Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-30-16

"The essence of optimism 
is that it takes no account of the present,
but it is a source of inspiration, of vitality 
and hope where others have resigned; 
it enables a man to hold his head high, 
to claim the future for himself 
and not to abandon it to his enemy."

-- Dietrich Bonhoeffer

Note: A friend sent me the original German citation of this quote,
so I thought I would include it:

"Optimismus ist in seinem Wesen keine Ansicht
über die gegenwärtige situation,
sonderen er ist eine Lebenskraft,
eine kraft der Hoffnung wo andere resignieren,
eine kraft, den kopf hoch zu halten,
wenn alles fehlzuschlagen scheint, eine Kraft,
Rückschlägezu ertragen, eine Kraft, die die Zukunft
niemals dem Feind lässt ,
sonderen sie für sich in Anspruch nimmt."

-- Dietrich Bonhoeffer

"Optimism doesn't wait on facts.
It deals with prospects.
Pessimism is a waste of time."

-- Norman Cousins

[Classic post from 10-30-10]

No matter how optimistic you think you are, there is probably someone to help you strengthen it. For me, that is my business partner, Ryan Stone.

I've always considered myself an optimist, looking toward a brighter future, but a lot of that was smoke and mirrors for a long time. It was a trained response. You see, I got into sales as a career when I was 22 and then at 25 became a sales manager, so I had to learn to be optimistic, to encourage and to be a leader--or try to be a leader. As a newbie in this field, I studied and studied and read books, listened to records and did everything I could to become an optimistic person and lead accordingly.

As a result of the constant study, (which I have yet to stop over 30 years later) I have to say that I think I succeeded for the most part. But, there are days. . . You probably know what I'm talking about--days when you feel pessimistic and doubtful; days when you just didn't get enough sleep, or feel like you need a vacation from the hustle and bustle of life, you know. . . escape!

I have to admit that I have those days. I am also very pleased that they are few in comparison with my past; however, when they come, sometimes I just need a little help from my friends, you know? Ryan is that. He can turn me back around toot sweet and have me laughing and cashing imaginary checks and what not. I think we do that for each other actually. It seems he gets that way too sometimes, and I help him get back on track.

We all need some friends sometimes. One of the most awesome things we can all do is to surround ourselves with people who, for the most part, are uplifting, optimistic, and encouraging. It can make all the difference, I know it for a fact.

Thanks, Ryan! The best partner I can imagine having. I'm blessed.

Optimism Doesn't Care Anything At All About Facts. 

Spread Some Joy Today--Think about the people you surround yourself with. How do they affect you? They absolutely have an effect, the only question is what? Maybe, some more optimistic people could be a benefit.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-29-16

"The most revolutionary act one can
commit in our world is to be happy."

-- Hunter Patch Adams

[Classic post from 5-22-11]

Yesterday, I went to an outdoor BBQ event in another city to pay my respects to the people putting it on. It was an absolutely beautiful picture perfect 75 degree California day. There was music playing, tri-tip, hot dogs, chips and drinks along with tables and chairs to take a load off and enjoy the food. It was a free event and most of the people that came were workers. There were raffles with prizes and I even won the first one: a baseball style cap. There were vendors showing off some trucks and I got to see some people I haven't seen in a while. I spent a leisurely hour and a half and had a good time.

As I was eating my food a couple of guys sat down, and I mentioned what a perfect day it was for this event. The first thing out of one guy was, "so much better than the rainy weather yesterday, and I wish it were warmer--it's still kind of chilly for this time of year." And his friend says, "yeah, you'll be happy for a rainy day when it's 105 degrees!" I didn't say anything vocally, but it made me think how humans just love--I mean LOVE to complain about just about everything.

Next time you're out and about, listen to some of the conversations going on around you, or say something very positive and upbeat about something and then listen. It will be interesting and full of complaints I predict.

I was enjoying the beauty of an area and mentioned all the beauty around us and a person with me says, "why is that branch over there cut off like that?" I said, "why in the world, with all this beauty all around, would your eyes go to that way over there to focus on?" They said, "because it's not beautiful, it would be beautiful if that weren't there." I said nothing further.

The more I get into this happier person that I have become and am becoming more of, I see what Patch Adams meant. It truly is a revolutionary act to choose to be happy on purpose. Of course, that is also the key: choosing to be happy rather than having things make us happy. John Mayer says that so well in his song, Waiting On the World To Change. Many people I talk with are doing just that. When the world changes they will be happy. Of course, it never does, so complaints just become a part of our frustrating, disappointing experience.

However, we can change that anytime we like--in a moment it can change. We change it only by changing our thinking about it and making a decision to be happy and to look for the beauty instead of the flaws. That is why I see beauty each and every day now because I have just decided to see beauty where ever it is and the more of it I see, the more of it I see until I see it all the time virtually everywhere I go. It's just a decision, a very simple, yet so monumentally powerful decision.

We All Have So Much More Control and Power Than We Ever Thought Possible.

Spread Some Joy Today--Choose to be happy, just for today. Then, do it again tomorrow. Then again. It's habit forming!

Monday, November 28, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-28-16

"Receive and ye shall give." 

Check this out from Abraham, Esther Hicks:

"As you set a financial goal, it is not only about the expansion for yourself; it's about the expansion of all of those who are involved in that which you are about. In other words, it creates this nucleus, this machine, that allows so many to begin to thrive along with you. It's much bigger than finances." 

This will make the next level so much more fun!

What Comes Around, Goes Around. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by becoming more joyful. It's an automatic win-win.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-27-16

"Nostalgia is a file 
that removes the rough edges 
from the good old days." 

-- Doug Larson 

"Remembrance of things past 
is not necessarily the remembrance 
of things as they were." 

-- Marcel Proust 

I was watching a TEDed video by Clay Routledge, titled, Why Do We Feel Nostalgia? He said that nostalgia used to be considered a debilitating disease. It was named in 1688, and until around 1850 or so it was treated as a disease in some interesting ways.

Nostalgia is often associated with the idea of the 'good old days.' Remembering fondly something from the past and wanting to be there again, and so we are feeling that place now as we spend time in the past feeling.

I spent several hours on YouTube yesterday afternoon watching many of the Kennedy Center honors of famous musicians and so enjoying the musical tributes given them by other famous musicians. I think I went through at least a half of a box of tissues and felt emotionally drained when I stopped. And, obviously, I absolutely adored watching them with the volume up trying to see through my teary eyes of joy. I think my favorite was Steven Tyler leading a medley of Beatles hits from the White Album as an offering to the honoree, Paul McCartney. Number two was Heart doing Stairway To Heaven for Led Zeppelin. They were both spectacular.

This caused me to remember musicians and groups that I've experienced in person over the years like, Elvis, Boz Scaggs, Rick Nelson, The Eagles, Tommy Emmanuel, Paul McCartney, Celine Dion, Neil Diamond, and more. I remembered one of the earliest when I was invited to a senior prom by a girlfriend who lived in Tiburon, now a very high-end area across the bay from San Francisco. Their prom was held in San Francisco and they had three groups playing, all of them along one wall, taking turns. This was 1968, and there was Tower of Power, Sons of Champlin, and Vince Guaraldi. Wow. I was blown away. Our proms had Ralph Rawson and his orchestra. . . so sad. I went to five junior and senior proms, and four of them had Ralph Rawson.

As I sat down trying to remember all the artists I've experienced in person, I found some really hard to remember, and I'm sure I haven't recalled them all. Then I thought about what I was doing and started laughing, and though I was thinking of something else, I decided to write about this mind wandering through the somewhat cloudy waters of nostalgia. Then I thought, what makes something memorable? I answered because I'm the only one nearby, that what makes something memorable is that it is something that is incredibly easy to remember.

Then, I thought, duh! You can see the depth of my analytical mind. This came up because I was putting in some mental labor trying to remember more of the artists that were not memorable. One of those was Donny & Marie Osmond. I had sort of forgotten that show for the most part, although they put on a heck of a show once I remembered, and yet some of the artists or groups came to mind in a heartbeat. Interesting how memorable my memory is.

Is It Real? Or, Is It Memorex? 

Spread Some Joy Today--by letting your emotions run freely for a while. No-stalgia, Yes-talgia, what-eva.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-26-16

"Quit trying to be a better person.
Love and accept yourself just as you are, 
and you will become better without any effort." 

-- Alan Cohen 

I love this quote by Alan Cohen. As I found this quote, I saw another on the subject of grace. And, even though Alan's latest book just published is titled, The Grace Factor - Opening the Door to Infinite Love, I thought I'd share something about grace from writer and theologian, Frederick Buechner:

"Grace is something you can never get but can only be given. There's no way to earn it or deserve it or bring it about any more than you can deserve the taste of raspberries and cream or earn good looks or bring about your own birth." 

"A crucial eccentricity of the Christian faith is, the assertion that people are saved by grace. There's nothing you have to do. There's nothing you have to do. There's nothing you have to do." 

He continues, "The grace of God means something like: "Here is your life. You might never have been, but you are, because the party wouldn't have been complete without you. Here is the world. Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid. I am with you. Nothing can ever separate us. It's for you I created the universe. I love you." 

Of course, we get to choose to accept the gift or reject it or ignore it. I dearly love the last part: "Beautiful and terrible things will happen. Don't be afraid. I am with you. Nothing can ever separate us." To accept this grace is to accept unconditional love.

I think when we accept this gift, that is not an exclusively Christian gift, but a gift from the God that is God to all, our path is open to enjoy this life that has been given, for it was given us to enjoy. Beautiful and terrible things may happen, but we get to determine that and choose as we will, and I believe that as we accept this grace and this power, we will most often choose the beautiful.

Enjoy The Grace You Are Given As You Choose, For Grace Is In The Choosing. Paying It Forward Might Be Fun. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by injoying yourself, while enjoying all that is around you.

Friday, November 25, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-25-16

"Imagining is perhaps 
as close as humans get 
to creating something out of nothing 
the way God is said to." 

-- Frederick Buechner 

Frederick continues, "It is a power that to one degree or another everybody has or can develop, like whistling. Like muscles, it can be strengthened through practice and exercise." 

"If imagination plays a major role in the creation of literature, it plays a major one also in the appreciation of it. It is essential to read imaginatively as well as to write imaginatively if you want to know what's really going on. A good novelist helps us do this by stimulating our imaginations--sensory detail is especially useful in this regard, such as the way characters look and dress, the sounds and smells of the places they live and so on--but then we have to do our part." 

Bob Proctor on an audio taught me how to practice imagination. He said something like this: Imagine yourself on the beach of an enchanting tropical island, lying in a hammock strung between two palm trees with the shade of the trees keeping the hot sun at bay. You feel the warm soft breeze flowing over your body. As you are looking at your perfectly tanned body, you realize that you are looking better than you ever have, and that feels oh so good. You reach down and grab a handful of the fine white sand and feel it sift through your fingers as you move your fingers and squeeze your hand closed. You hear the gentle rhythmic lapping of the water against the shore, and you can hear seagulls mewing not far away. In the distance, you hear music with the unmistakable sounds of someone playing steel drums. You can smell there is some outdoor cooking going on near where the music is coming from. That delightful smell causes you to feel a bit hungry. Just then, your favorite island cocktail arrives, and you feel the icy cold glass and take your first sip through two of those skinny little straws as you notice the little bamboo umbrella in a piece of fresh pineapple . . .

Could you imagine any of that, sense it, feel it?

This morning, I was reading a bit from Abraham, Esther Hicks that makes perfect sense; albeit, we often resist it. They said:

"Whatever your focus of attention, it is summoning the Life Force--and it is the feel of the Life Force that life is about. The reason that you are summoning it is inconsequential. In other words, it is every bit as possible to feel as much joy in the preparation of your taxes as in the planning of an ocean cruise." 

They continue, "There is no value in using happy-sounding words if you do not feel happy. The Law of Attraction is not responding to your words, but instead, is responding to the vibrations that are radiating from you. It is quite possible for you to use all the right-sounding words at the same time that you are in a state of powerful resistance to your own Well-Being, for the words you use are not important--how you feel is what matters." 

When we want something or something different than we are currently getting, the most positive self-talk, written affirmations, or even reading the words written by the most spiritual of teachers is of very little use. The words at best can only entice you toward a feeling within you and it is that feeling that is attracting more that is like that feeling. How we are feeling is our vibration that Abraham, Esther Hicks and many others refer to all the time.

How we change our vibration to match what we really want, and this is true especially when we are trying so hard to be positive, is to practice our imagination. As we develop and exercise our imagination to the point that we are smelling, hearing, touching, tasting, and thereby experiencing in our mind that which we are imagining, this is the magic that leads us to change our vibration and via the Law of Attraction to attract more of that which we want.

At the same time, it is completely unproductive in the direction we want to go to give any energy to what we do not want, or what is now that is not to our liking. Pushing against anything only draws more of that which we are pushing against. Here's where dropping the rope is key to change. Then, begin imagining what you want until you are feeling it as fully as you can. No need to spend all day at that, just a few minutes each day will do perfectly.

The Imaginative Mind Is The Tool Of Experience. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by focusing on that which brings you joy.

Thursday, November 24, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-24-16

"Nothing is more honorable 
than a grateful heart." 

-- Seneca 

As I awoke with my eyes still closed early this morning, I asked myself a question. I asked, "what am I really thankful for in my life?"

My first answer came very quickly. I said, "to be me, in this life, learning, and all in all, to experience all of it--the learning; the expansion; the sensory acknowledgement, and I am especially grateful for living to the point that I have come to understand myself as the creator of what I experience."

Well, it was very close to that, but I've had some breakfast and coffee to think it through just a bit more. . .

In all my past, the answer would have been quite different. I would have been thankful for things, for certain people and having a relationship with them. There would have been some obligatory mentions, and sound bites that increased its sounding wise over time. Nonetheless, they would have all been outside of myself.

In all my past, I've not been especially thankful for me, and I've come to know for sure and for certain, that this was a habitually repeated mistake.

After all, what matters more than my experience of my life? There would be no one or no thing to be grateful for without my experiencing this life.

As I am inside my body looking out, I see things, circumstances, opportunities, and people that I am thankful for, and I have learned to consider and express that more and more, and yet have so rarely thought of expressing my gratitude for the opportunity to be me, to live this life that is me, to share this life that is me, to simply and exquisitely be me.

It is not ego. Ego is always trying to be better than, worse than someone or something else. This isn't the ego talking. It is awareness.

When someone asks the question, "what do you value?" Would you be first on the list? Or might you think that egotistical? Yet, to not consider ourselves in this value list, gratitude list, and even at the top of it before anything else, I think diminishes that value and thankfulness.

I've written about loving myself, having unconditional love for ourselves, to accept being perfect in our imperfection, to allow our uniqueness to be pure, and that love begins with appreciation of ourselves. From this place, any love we feel for and share with others, any appreciation we have for things, events outside of us is exponentially expanded.

It seems from my life passed that I've more often been down on myself in many ways, from being not enough of this, too much of that, insecure about all manner of things, not understanding and appreciating the value of the ego, but instead being at war with it. I was very much into manipulation, of my inner talk, and my outer actions. My intent might be one thing while the result another.

Now, I am enamored in that I have lived to the point that I understand that I am in control--that I am the creator of my own life--and even more important, I am the experiencer of my life. I am not negating one bit the Creator who created this that I call me. In fact, I am even more in awe of that gift as I accept and appreciate that which is me, and also recognize the ongoing and grander awareness of that connection still in force, and having never left me for a moment in time. 

From This Place, I Am More In Touch With What It Means To Be Thankful. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by fully accepting yourself as the pure delight that God created.

Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-23-16

"Who looks outside, dreams; 
who looks inside, awakes."

-- Carl Jung 

After yesterday's post, I was contemplating the duality of our world here on this planet, in this time-space environment. It is said that we cannot truly know joy without knowing pain, or that we cannot know love without knowing hate or fear, and so on. And though this might be true for many, it is not a requirement. It is much simpler than this.

I think it is true that what is going on outside of us is a direct reflection of what is going on inside of us. We see with our eyes that which is outside of us, and all the interpretations of that information is done on the inside. We use our brain to recognize and extrapolate what it means. We interpret based on known information and experience what anything means to us.

I was specifically thinking last night and this morning about the adage that we cannot know happiness without knowing unhappiness, or that we cannot really know joy without knowing fear, and so on. In other words, we cannot know this feeling without having experienced the opposite feeling as if it is a requirement in order to feel something. Is it really necessary to feel bad so that we can understand and experience what it is to feel good?

I love Abraham, Esther Hicks' emotional scale found in their book, Ask and It Is Given, as well, I have shared it a few times in these Daily Inspirations. It has 22 places, and goes top to bottom where at number one is love, joy, freedom all the way to depression and powerlessness at number 22, with various improving or degrading emotions in between. It isn't meant to be a complete list because we have hundreds, maybe thousands of words to express a feeling point. But, I think it is helpful and has been for me.

At one point, I felt that I agreed that to know and appreciate love, feeling those emotions that are the opposite enhances what it is like to really know love, and although that can certainly be true, it is not a requirement. We get to choose all day, every day of our lives how we want to feel.

I interpret Carl Jung's quote this way: Looking outside at what is going on and paying much attention to it is dreaming. It is happening to us. We often react to it one way or the other. It's sort of visually like being a pinball in a pinball machine. And, looking inside is awakening. This is where we realize that we have much more control than we imagined as we were focused on the outside. We have guidance within to help us change, rearrange, or reinterpret the events outside of us, and we realize that within is where everything is interpreted. Inside is where we realize that we are in control of our life here to the point that we accept that control and make use of it. And, the really good part is that we are not alone in that task. In addition, we can create from the inside that which is going on outside, or rather, where we can create what we want to see on the outside by accepting and practicing that idea.

Just after I wrote and published yesterday's post, I received this message from Abraham, Esther Hicks, and I thought it was perfect:

"Source is there for everyone at all times. We are always there. And so when you are aware of the presence of Source and when you are not offering a vibration that prevents you from your alignment with Source, then you have those wonderful moments. And you can do that all the time. And people refer to those who are doing that as masters. But all of you can do that. It is the mastery of focus. That's what it is." 

So my experiences at the grocery store and the clouds, were not so much what was outside of me, but what was inside. It was how I interpreted it. It was what I was looking to see. I have learned that I want to feel good, and I now find all manner of ways to feel good. I am not required to feel bad in order to feel good. I get to choose all day, every day.

I'll add this affirmation from the sign on my wall that I've shared many times, also from Abraham, Esther Hicks: "Today, no matter where I'm going, and no matter what I am doing, it is my dominant intent to see that which I am wanting to see." 

I am wanting always to feel good, and feeling good to me is all about seeking to find things to appreciate, realizing that we are all from the same Source, being injoy as much as possible because joy is feeling good regardless.

I Now Spend Most Of My Time On The Feeling Good Side Of The Stick. I Don't Need To Feel Bad To Experience What Feeling Good Is Like Or To Try To Enhance It That Way. I Just Like Feeling Good. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by choosing to feel how you want to feel, and I'm guessing that feeling good and being injoy is really your desire.

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-22-16

"Enveloped in Your Light, 
may I be a beacon 
to those in search of Light. 
Sheltered in Your Peace, 
may I offer shelter 
to those in need of peace. 
Embraced by Your Presence, 
so may I be present to others." 

-- Rabbi Rami Shapiro 

I would like to share just a bit of my day yesterday when I was out doing errands. I needed just a few things, so I stopped at the grocery store. The parking lot was almost full, and still I found a spot near the door. I went in, pulled out a cart and was a bit surprised how many people were in there. It was actually kind of crowded, so I thought, well, this is interesting, and it must be people getting ready for Thanksgiving.

I have a smile on my face and I am having a good time being courteous to cart traffic, looking people in the eye and smiling at them. Almost everyone in there had such a serious look on their face. This made me smile all the more. To be so serious looked out of place. A few who recognized that I was looking at them smiling, chose to accept some of that love and smiled back, if even for a few moments.

I wasn't trying to change them. I was enjoying watching them. I wasn't smiling at them so that they would smile back, I was appreciating each one, as each was unique. It was fun for me, and it was also pleasing when one would return the smile.

I got what I needed, check out was busy yet timely, and I got in my truck to go home. As I pulled out into traffic there was enough space in front of me that I had the opportunity to look up. We've had a bit of rain and cloudiness for the last few days, and today was mostly sunny, but in the afternoon, there were some clouds coming through the area.

As I looked up, in one moment I took in a cloud formation in front of me that the setting sun's light hit just so that it was like the grandest painting you could imagine. Parts of the cloud formation were shaded and part was brilliantly lit up, and it took my breath away. It's funny how clouds do that quite often to me these days.

My day, although very good, instantly went from a seven to a ten. And, it was only a moment because I had to watch the traffic in front of me. As I drove, I wanted more, but it wasn't the same. It was good, but nowhere near the spectacular sight I saw just moments ago.

Then I thought, isn't that fascinating! It is amazing how much power, joy, and depth of experience I can notice in but one single moment. It caused me to think of so many things that I experience and how when something feels really special in some way that I want to experience it longer, wanting it to last, to savor it. Sometimes I can and do, because, why not? But, what I realized during this experience is that I don't need to. Yes, I want to, I would love to extend that joy, but even only to touch it for a moment is a full experience. I had never realized that fullness before. And as I contemplated all of that, I was in pure joy.

I experience these events throughout my day now. Whether I am glancing at the squirrel in my courtyard chewing on a succulent, birds feasting, the sun setting, the sun rising, the rain--it pretty much doesn't matter what I see anymore--I see beauty, magnificence, and I'm enchanted with it all. It makes me feel like I have arrived at this place where I want to savor it all, even if many are but moments in time.

"Every Natural Object Is A Conductor Of Divinity." -- John Muir 

Spread Some Joy Today--by finding things to appreciate that are all around you every moment of every day. Delight in them or not, but joy is in the delight.

Monday, November 21, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-21-16

"I did have difficulty 
with someone telling me they loved me, 
and then putting a limitation 
on what I can do or be. 
Love shouldn't diminish you, 
it should enhance you." 

-- Carole Bayer Sager 

In a relationship, we often give the other more power than they deserve. It's as if we have this amount of power between us, and then we shift much of our own power over to the other, leaving us with less. But, there is plenty to go around when we accept our own power, while also allowing the other their own. When we try to impose our thoughts and needs on the other, we give them a responsibility that is not deserved, and many times, they just mess it up.

Anita Moorjani was talking with someone in her book, What If This Is Heaven? about choosing joy. She offered some questions for that person to consider. "How can I love myself more? How can I support myself more? What would I be doing if I did love myself? What can I do each day to show myself how much I love and support myself. And then I would write down what comes to me and actually do these things each day." 

She adds, "I've also learned that it's important to feel that what I'm doing comes from a place of love and not from a place of fear; that is, I make whatever choice I make because I love myself, treasure my life, and want to feel good again--not because I fear what will happen otherwise." 

As I look at the newspaper, it is a a place to advertise for some of our clients, but more than this, it is an instrument of fear. It is so biased toward fearful events that have happened, and a good number that might happen, that it would be easy to think that this is the way the world is. As we look at movies, television, social media, and the Internet, the mix seems so similar. It's hard to know what is real or not sometimes because people publish things out of context, and ignorance, and negative emotion. This is often true with how relationships are shown in the supermarket tabloids, and popular magazines. Who's divorcing whom, who's cheating on whom, and so much more.

It would be easy in paying much attention to all of this to ask, where is the love? But, at the very least, each negative thing or statement we see, there is a minimum of one positive one that may not be shown. The Ying and Yang, the plus and minus. We live in a world of duality.

But, we get to choose what we focus on. Equally, in a relationship, we get to choose for our own health, happiness, and well-being--indeed, loving ourselves as fully as we can, or hoping the other will do it for us. At best, they could only succeed sometimes. It's too much for them to take care of themselves and us at the same time with the fullness of that which we seek from them. It's not really their job. It's ours.

The quote at the top came from a just released book by Carole Bayer Sager, titled, They're Playing Our Song: A Memoir. They became lovers and collaborators, and soon enough their hopes of what the other would be for them became the impossible dream--unless. . . that is, unless they gave up themselves and gave it all to the other. And, of course, that would only play for so long too. We easily lose respect for people who give up themselves. 

I see this all the time in movies and books and if I read them, in magazines and other publications. As well, I've seen and experienced it in my own life too.

The part that was missing in my own life was loving myself, respecting myself, caring for myself, which affected the other and visa versa. We can't be selfless and be ourselves, can we? When we give up ourselves, what good are we to a partner? It's like taking all the flavor out.

Let's go back to the questions above. How can we love ourselves more, care for ourselves, do and be what we need to be? How can we do this and share a life with another? I think it makes sharing a life with another as perfect as that can be, providing we are both loving ourselves as much as we love the other.

When We Give Up Ourselves, We Have Nothing To Give. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by finding ways in which you can feel more joy, feel more love, injoy yourself, love yourself--even up to how God is loving you and injoy about you.

Sunday, November 20, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-20-16

"You do not have to conform 
to a particular idea 
of what success represents. 
You are successful exactly as you are." 

-- Bashar 

Bashar adds, "remove the expectations! It doesn't have to manifest exactly as your ego or your habits think it should. It doesn't have to! Let it manifest along the path of least resistance. Stop fighting yourself. You do not have to push yourself into a mold. You fit exactly where you are." 

Sometimes, we might think that we are not deserving enough, or that we aren't this or that enough, or that it isn't in the cards, but that's just putting obstacles in our own way.

Let's let go of that whole deserving idea. According to Bashar, "You deserve anything you can conceive of just because you have the ability to conceive of it. You don't have to earn the right to deserve happiness; you already have that right because you exist." 

We often create 'rules' for success, happiness, or whatever we say we want in our lives. It will come when __________, I have to get to ____________, I have to pay my dues, and a thousand and one more. There is only one rule: Decide.

By deciding what we want, by acknowledging how it is feeling to us as if it is accomplished right this moment, it cannot not come. As Abraham, Esther Hicks has often said (in my minor paraphrasing), "be as specific as you can and still feel good, but if you are not feeling good, let go of the specifics, but hold on to the way it feels as if you had it." When the specifics start causing us to feel off, have anxiety, bringing up that old deserving aspect, we are encroaching the part that is not our job, or as Mike Dooley calls it, "the curs-ed how's."

We have so much more power than we think. We get to make it all up. We get to choose how we will feel. If we are feeling bad, or off, we can instantly change that by recognizing it is happening, then pivoting toward something that feels better. When we try to conform with someone else's idea of what success is or happiness, or anything else, we are trying to take on the curs-ed how's. Our job is what, not how, and it's a good thing too, because how is full of problems for us, but for God, whose job how really is, it is child's play.

You Are Perfect The Way You Are. You Are Perfect The Way You Choose To Be Next. 

Spread Some Joy Today--Relax. Enjoy the ride. You're the driver.

Saturday, November 19, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-19-16

So, the story of young George Washington 
goes like this (from my memory in school): 

George's father: 
George, did you cut down the cherry tree? 

Father, I cannot tell a lie. 
No, I did not. 

Is George telling the truth? Does George's father believe that his son is incapable of lying? Or, could it be that there are quite a number of versions of the truth? Is anyone truly honest all of the time, or do we make all manner of judgments and develop countless punishments only for the very few?

When I was a young kid, my mom or dad would ask if I had done something when they knew darn good and well I did it, as they listened to me say I did not. Much of the time they knew I was lying, and I got the board, belt, sent to my room to contemplate the next move, etc. That is, until one day as I was somewhere between 10 and 12 years old I think, my answer to the question from my step-dad was, "what's it to ya?" Well, I don't know if you can guess what happened next, but he slapped me so hard in my face that my glasses flew all the way across the room. That quelled the bolder new me for a while.

Do kids lie? Do bears do it in the woods? Do parents lie? Do bees make honey? Does everyone lie? Hmmm, I can't speak for everyone, but my guess would be yes, under certain circumstances at least.

I ran across this piece from Abraham, Esther Hicks that sheds some beautiful and colorful light on the subject of liars and truth-tellers:

"If you feel drawn to someone, but you are annoyed because you think that they are telling you some lies, try to look beyond the lies and try to focus upon the feeling. People offer all kinds of words for all kinds of different reasons. Most lies are offered to try to keep things in alignment. We're not encouraging it, but the motive behind lying is usually a pretty honorable motive. In other words, when a child lies to their parents, it's usually because they want to be free to do what they want to do, and they don't want their parents to be upset about it. It's about wanting an alignment. Physical ears have a hard time hearing this. You keep talking about "We need to be honest." And we say, we don't meet any of you who are honest. Even those who claim to be the most virtuous, are not honest, but your vibration always is. We would trust the feeling more than the words." 

After I read this, I instantly got some insight into children lying, and speaking for myself, my own lying even as an adult when I felt the need to do so. Then I thought about the parent and child situation, and wondered, what if the parent understood what Abraham understands about this situation, and they did not react, but responded with love? What if there were no consequences? Interesting. What if the parents taught alignment with our inner being as our guidance system and that this was the most important thing to understand and learn to follow? What a different world that would be, at least in that one world.

I think lying is as natural as breathing when it comes to communication. Heck, look at the most recent election. But, regardless of what words come out of a person's mouth, it is their vibration that is key and we can all sense the vibration of others when we allow ourselves to do that, which allows us to know a great deal more than the words tend to speak.

Liars Are People. People Are Sometimes Liars. Unconditional Love Sees No Problem. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by laying down the resistance rope. We all do what we think is best, and we also know everyone has an opinion. Just take a chill pill and let it all go. We are all connected. We understand more than we will admit.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-18-16

and it will be given to you; 
and you will find; 
and it will be opened unto you."

-- Matthew 7:7, NAS, The Bible 

What a magnificent quote from the Bible. Notice what it doesn't say. It doesn't say, "complain, and you will have more to complain about; close your eyes and mind and you will be blind to opportunity; forget about your power and you will experience powerlessness." No, it doesn't say this, but these would be equally true with the words from the Bible.

It has been said, and I have heard it, and read it many times over the years that, "it is better to give than receive." You've probably heard it and maybe even said it yourself, but do you find it to be true? And, if so, why do you believe it? Is it because you think this is the right thing to do, to be selfless, or is it because of how you feel doing one or the other? Was that feeling taught you, or did you experience it on your own?

Here's a better question: Is it possible to give without receiving? Likewise, is it possible to receive without giving? And, another: is giving really better than receiving? Is there something selfish about receiving?

Some of us who have believed that very old adage that it is better to give than receive, are leading lives with a huge lack of receiving. We are not getting what we want because we somehow think that we don't deserve it. We might even think that we deserve the lot in life we have become accustomed to--never enough money, unsatisfying jobs, and a very long list of lacking this and that and the other. Is giving really better than receiving? Why is receiving lacking when compared with giving?

I think it is purely training. Perhaps well meaning training. It may have been passed down generation to generation. Yet, it is only real as we say it is real.

Abraham, Esther Hicks in their first published book, Ask and It Is Given, is exactly as the Bible quote from Matthew 7:7. Abraham says that whatever you ask, it is gladly given. They say, that there are three parts to this simple, yet profound teaching. Step one: Ask. This is our job. Just like the sign on my wall that begins with, "WHAT is my job." Asking is always our job. If we are not asking, there is no getting.

Step two: It is given. This is exactly what the Bible quote says, isn't it? It is given. Ask, and it is given. There isn't any negotiation. It is done. It is given. As soon as we ask, it is given. Gladly. With unconditional love. No magic, just fact. This part is not our job, and as the second part of my sign on my wall says, "HOW is God's job." I don't need to know how because that is not my job. My job is to ask. When I ask, it is given. Done deal.

Step three: Receive. Now, here's where it gets dicey. God says, ask, and it will be given; seek, and we will find (with our eyes and mind open!); and, knock, and it shall be opened to me. All the same thing. We say what we want, it is given, and asking, seeking, knocking are not activities as they might seem, but expressions of our desires. Abraham, Esther Hicks from a seminar in 2001 said this:

"You might say, "How do I know if I'm in a receiving mode or not?" And we say, you always feel good when you're in a receiving mode. When someone offers you a compliment, do you receive it, or do you sort of just shrug it off? There's something about believing that you must justify your existence through your effort or through your perseverance, through your struggle. And many of you just have not practiced the receiving mode." 

Most of us who have always believed that it is better to give than receive, have taken that to heart to the point that they are not allowing themselves to receive in many different ways. Some are not feeling deserving, not loving ourselves, not believing they can have what they want, feeling powerless, unworthy, and many more. But receiving is part of the three step equation, and it isn't just Abraham, is it? What comes next from the Bible quote is receiving. Ask, and it is given. Receive and you shall accept the gift that is given.

Part one is our job. We must ask. But, as Jesus said, we are so enhanced in the power of our asking as we ask in believing. I want this, and I believe I can have it because when I ask it is always given. I don't even need to trust. It is always given.

Part two is not our job. God, the Universe, All-That-Is will be fully in charge of this part. It is given. Every time. All we need do is ask. However, if we are complaining, lamenting, not believing, we get that too. The asking part is our choice and whatever we ask is okay, and whatever we ask is given in love, even if we are not loving ourselves.

Part three is our job. Are we ready to receive? Will we feel deserving to receive? If God says whatsoever ye ask is yours, then what point is there is arguing with this by feeling undeserving. Receiving is as important as giving. It is not more important or better to give than receive. They are both equally important. We have much to share (giving), and we have much to learn and delight in (receiving).

Trust. Trust that the Bible verse and Abraham's plan is true. Consider what you're asking, and take joy in that it is given, while accepting that the asking is given by receiving with equal joy and confidence.

What's The Difference Between Asking For What We Want Or What We Don't Want? Joy! 

Spread Some Joy Today--by receiving the joy that is offered to you every day, everywhere you go, even as you are standing still.

Thursday, November 17, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-17-16

"How often do you find yourself 
paying a lot of attention 
to the cracks in the sidewalk, 
when to focus on the horizon 
would be so much more beneficial?" 

-- Terry Minion 

The other day when talking with a client's representative, I said to her much the same thing as above. We were discussing the idea of following web stats on their site, and I said that giving that a lot of attention is like watching the cracks in the sidewalk when to give most of our attention to the horizon can be much more beneficial. It's true. Web stats change so much and so dramatically, and after a while it becomes like the tail wagging the dog instead of the other way around.

When I was a kid, probably between the ages of 7 and 11, we made our own skateboards. This was long before the kind of skateboards you can buy now. We took a piece of 2x4 of sufficient length, took those old steel roller skates that you could put on to any shoes with clamps and straps, pulled them apart and nailed them on to each end of the board. That was our skateboard, and it was fun--and scary at the same time.

Those old, inexpensive steel wheeled skates were problematic on anything except smooth concrete. You had to watch the cracks in the sidewalk, and raised portions of the concrete so that you wouldn't hit them wrong and have the skateboard suddenly stop and due to momentum, I would keep going, soon enough falling down, skinning something or another. The worst thing was little rocks. They would stop those boards no matter how fast I might be going.

So, it became obvious to watch out for trouble. . .

Yet, if one was to become really good at skateboarding, he or she would have to pay far more attention to the horizon, or the bigger picture, and the faster you wanted to go, the more this was true. If you wanted to get good at it. You could say that it was trusting, looking on the bright side, not worrying, enjoying the process, believing it would be just fine.

Isn't this a great analogy of our life in general? The horizon is the place to focus. When we give more attention to the cracks, the pebbles, the changes in rising and lowering of things, we often lose track of where we're going, why we are doing a thing. The horizon is where growth is, and watching the cracks is anticipating lack of growth. The horizon is having hope and confidence, and watching the cracks is not trusting, worrying, and then you look up for a moment and there is a mother and her baby carriage, toting a young child holding her hand taking up the whole sidewalk. . . React quickly!

How often do I give so much attention to the details that often don't really matter very much? When I predict the future based on the past, I am immediately putting stones in my path. There is only now, and as I enjoy what is right now, enjoy the view and the experience of whatever I am doing without worry or concern, I am fulfilling the grand purpose of life. When I trust, like the sign on my wall that says, everything is always working out for me, it does, and it will.

How often might you be paying attention to the cracks in the sidewalk, when the horizon gives you the best view?

Loving Life Eyes Wide Open. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by raising your vision to the joy that is all around you.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-16-16

"A belief 
is just a thought 
you keep thinking." 

-- Abraham, Esther Hicks 

Let's say you're from the San Francisco bay area, and you go to a San Francisco 49ers game where they are playing the Miami Dolphins. You like the 49ers and you came to cheer them on. The Dolphins make a great play and score. Would you stand up and cheer? Most likely not. If the roles were reversed, most likely you wouldn't cheer the 49ers in Miami when they make a good play or score a touchdown. You're either for or you're against, right? You're probably not for and for, enjoying the whole of it, happy for every move that works well. No, you're probably happy when your team does, and not happy, maybe even quite upset when the other team does.

That's a belief. That's your team. They're the best even when they are not doing well. Loyalty counts. Faith counts. Just like the really loyal Chicago Cubs fan who has been a fan for 50 years, until 2016 at least. You believe.

But a belief is just a thought that we keep thinking.

Why do race relations continue to be problematic after thousands of years of evolution? Because of beliefs. Beliefs can be really strong things. They are held together by so many thoughts that to unravel them and adopt another point of view as a new belief is so difficult for so many. It is so much easier, convenient, and comfortable to hold our beliefs even in the face of absolute proof that they are in error.

I like how Mike Dooley, a.k.a., The Universe said it in this morning's, Note from the Universe. He said, "Actually, everyone is reasonable. They just have their own reasons." 

Is a belief the truth? It is while we believe it, regardless of fact, competing opinion, or even current reality. It doesn't matter how much I believe your beliefs are bogus, insane, or at least, unenlightened. When you really believe something, it doesn't matter what others believe.

This came from a thought that popped into my head this morning: Have you ever had a belief and then let go of that belief and chose another?

Maybe an obvious one would be believing in the Easter Bunny or Santa Claus, or the Tooth Fairy. Maybe some we sort of naturally grow out of from peer pressure or our own questioning. Others, such as what we believe about certain people, organizations, or ideas, we may hold firm for as long as our entire lives, partly because of our constant association with people of similar beliefs. There is a strong desire, I think, for people of like thinking to gather, and it is even deeper and simpler than this as I associate the Law of Attraction into the scene. From Abraham, Esther Hicks, here's a bit on that influence:

"Law of Attraction is Universal, and every person is affected by it. And it is always true that what I think and what I feel and what I get are always a match, and there is not a person on the planet that did not know that when they were born, and there is not a person on the planet that would not benefit by knowing it. But many, many, many are not yet asking and therefore are not yet ready for the answer. And so, we would say that - although everyone wants this information - everyone is not necessarily ready for it. We would not spend any time trying to convince anybody of anything because if they're not asking, your answers are just irritating." 

The Law of Attraction is, that which is like unto itself is drawn. So like attracts like and whether it is a positive or a negative is of no consequence. As I think about what I dislike or hate about a people, a person, an idea, an entity, the Law of Attraction unerringly attracts more of the same thoughts, people who think the same way, circumstances, the kind of neighbors we have and so much more. Equally, it does the same exact thing in the more positive realm. As a thought is acted on by the Law of Attraction and more is drawn, it makes it easy to become a belief because our current reality shows us that it is true for us and so many around us too.

As Abraham says though, not everyone is ready to understand how this works. Once you understand it, you can see it at work constantly in our own life as well as those around us.

Beliefs are very powerful accumulated thoughts. They become like a rope instead of a length of string. And, because they are our own, they can only be changed from the inside. Something outside may create a spark, but the ignition is on the inside.

Real Change Is From Within. 

What Do You Believe? Only You Are In Charge Of Keeping Them, Discarding Them, Or Changing Them. And, It Begins With As Little As One Thought. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by noticing how you are feeling, then choosing if you will, to focus on feeling good.

Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-15-16

"The ego is our best friend." 

-- Anita Moorjani 

Yesterday, I mentioned that I would write about an enlightening view of the ego in Anita Moorjani's latest book, What If This Is Heaven?

Her chapter structure is based on accepted myths and she offers a different point of view for each. Chapter eight is, Myth: Spiritual People Don't Have Egos. It's a common idea for spiritual people to overcome or rise above the ego as if the ego is something undesirable and therefore to move away from.

During Anita's near death experience, she saw and experienced unconditional love, and a oneness, a world without the duality we have here. There an ego has no reason to be, but in recognizing this difference from the life here, she realized that "the ego gives us our sense of identity, our individuality. It's what allows us to know who we are as individuals and to express our uniqueness." She adds, "In fact, were it not for our ability to discriminate--to differentiate through comparison and contrast--nothing would exist in this world." 

Anita states that "When we come into our bodies, we have consciousness and we have an ego. That's why we call this a state of duality." Then after some more discussion with others and their curiosity, she comes to a part that I love because it has it make sense in a simple and visual way.

She says that when we are born it is as if we have two dials, like the volume dials on a stereo, with marks from zero to ten. One is called awareness (another word for consciousness), and the other for the ego. She says that "Having the awareness level set to full blast means we are well aware of our connection with the universe and everyone and everything in it." 

At birth, she says that both dials are turned to ten. But, after a while in this environment with other people influencing us in many ways, one or both dials are more often turned down. We might call this shyness, or one way up and one way down, where if the ego was up and awareness down, this is where we call people egotistical, or full of self.

She adds, "it's not that they have huge egos or have become more egotistical. It's just that they appear that way because their conscious awareness knob is turned way down while their ego knob is still on full. Our empathy for those around us is muted. We believe the ego is who we are." 

If the awareness dial was brought up to the same level, the egotism goes away, allowing the awareness of those around us and for us to be confident in that awareness, and at the same time, our uniqueness.

With the awareness knob way up and the ego way down, we might be a recluse, or could even become a doormat for others so to speak, where we don't consider our own needs and allowing others to take advantage. We need both awareness and ego, and when they are aligned equally, we are at our peak of allowing our own unique expression, and aware of and allowing others that same privilege. 

Anita realized that she spent the majority of her life trying so hard to fit into other people's expectations while rebelling at the same time. Both her awareness and her ego knobs were very low. This is also the breeding ground for shame, depression, unworthiness, and powerlessness.

She goes on to explain some ways to see these indications within our own lives and those of others, and where and how we might be of service to others to help them balance their awareness with their ego without trying to fix them. They aren't broken. They are just a bit out of balance.

In the space I have here, I've given but an overview, and I highly recommend this book is worth picking up, even if only for this one chapter. It has certainly opened my mind to a better way of visualizing my own past and present, and how other people may be affecting me, with some methods of creating even better relationships within and without.

Diverse Points Of View Can Be Perfect Toward Greater Understanding. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by allowing your own uniqueness to thrive.

Monday, November 14, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-14-16

"How did we come up with the notion 
that life is not okay just the way it is, 
or that it won't be okay the way it will be? 

Who said that the way life 
naturally unfolds is not all right? 

The answer is, fear says so." 

-- Michael A. Singer 

The questions and answer above is one of the more powerful things that I have learned from Michael A. Singer. The other is to not shut off part of ourselves by resisting.

I was rereading a bit from Bashar about beliefs and how powerful they are, and, as well, how malleable they are, and he came to a place that seemed to mirror Michael Singer's thoughts. He said, "feelings are a reaction to a belief; they are secondary to beliefs. Feelings are not the primary experience of reality; beliefs are the primary interface. First you believe something is true; then you get the feeling; then you have the reinforcing thoughts--which may re-reinforce the belief; and then you regenerate more of the same feelings." 

There was an objection to his explanation about how many negative thoughts come up and the voices in his head saying, what about this, and that, and the other, etc.

Here's where he mirrors Michael Singer. He said, "Let them come up! So what?!? You see, you are trying to shut portions of yourself off. You think that when you integrate, you will never hear those voices again. and that's not true; you will always hear those voices. As a matter of fact, the more you integrate, the more you will hear them because you are accepting everything, every way you are, into your life. And those are some of the ways you can exist. They come up not to show you you have failed, not to show you you are stuck; they keep coming up to give you the opportunity to realize how much you must have changed. You don't relate to the them same way you used to--unless, of course, you choose to do so." 

As I read that and remembered what I learned from The Untethered Soul, I realize how much I've grown even though the negative talk persists in my head. I think that I must have been thinking that once I get to a certain level of awareness, that the positive would be predominate and that I would overcome. I see now that is not true. Yet it is true that I have become a much calmer, more enlightened person who loves life openly. It is not one or the other, it is simply how one is allowed to pass through without resisting, or turning it into a problem, or stuffing it to chew on later and such. You could say accurately that it is just less resistance, and more allowing. The talk remains, but I simply watch it go by just like sitting at the airport watching people come and go.

In most of my reading of this type of material, it has seemed to me that one big goal was to overcome the ego. As Wayne Dyer said, "EGO is an acronym for Edging God Out." It seemed that the idea of more enlightenment is to negate the ego, or rise above it, but in Anita Moorjani's newest book, What If This Is Heaven? she says that the ego is a primary part of us which is what makes us unique in this plane of existence, that we don't want to overcome it. I'll write more about that tomorrow because it is absolutely fascinating and a radically different point of view that makes a lot of sense.

To think the talk will stop is sort of a false objective I think. What is more important than trying to shut it off, is to allow it to pass through without getting stuck inside. Just like the airport analogy, here they come, here they are, there they go--oh, and here comes another and another and there they go. How interesting. . . And just like sitting at the airport watching the diversity of people going by, we have this tendency to like ourselves better and better, and this is equally true as we allow those monkey mind thoughts to flow unobstructed. 

I Am Not My Thoughts; Although, They Are A Part Of Me. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by resisting not. There is no joy in resistance.

Sunday, November 13, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-13-16

"The privilege of a lifetime
is being who you are." 

--Joseph Campbell 

I cannot think of many other statements than this one by Joseph Campbell that express the magnificence of life as we know it. We may not always appreciate our lives in this way, but we are certainly worthy of that appreciation.

Wayne Dyer in his book, Living An Inspired Life, states that "it's imperative to eliminate self-perceptions that might cloud our vision or makes us question our Divine magnificence. . . If we want to move from disenchantment to inspiration, or from apathy and indifference to passion and enthusiasm, then it's necessary to alter our awareness of ourselves." 

A Course in Miracles, states in lesson 94 of the workbook an empowering thought for peace within: "I am as God created me."

In all of these thoughts, here is a wonderful affirmation to print out and put on your bathroom mirror, or on you wall, in your purse, or wallet. It is three huge words:

I Am Enough. 

How often do we allow our 'monkey mind' to say how many ways we may not be enough. Words and phrases like 'should,' 'could.' 'need to,' 'ought to,' drag us away from being enough. It might be saying that we aren't slim enough, not smart enough, have made poor decisions in the past, wishing we were healthier, could fit into clothes we still have in our closet but haven't been able to wear for years, have the wrong job, don't make enough money, and the list is pretty much endless left to our monkey mind's own devices.

Let me affirm: I am enough. I am as God created me. 

Whether we believe that this life is the only life we will ever have, or that we have been here many times and many more to come experiencing all manner of lives, in either case, to affirm that we are enough and that we are as God created us, and accept our Divine magnificence, and appreciate the privilege of being who we are at this time in this life, are among the most worthy thoughts we could state as true for us. 

I think that is what an affirmation is. It is a statement of truth for us, even though we may have been ignoring it for some time, or simply forgotten it temporarily. In any case, affirming your Divine truth will bring you back to your magnificence in short order.

You Are Enough. You Are As God Created You. You Are Magnificent. 

Spread Some Joy Today--as you know it is your own true natural state.

Saturday, November 12, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-12-16

"You must learn that nobody can control 
everything in the flow of life," said Dart. 
"Control is something we all strive for--but you will find, 
as you become more experienced with magic, 
that you gain more control over yourself 
by releasing your need to control life." 

-- A. Grace Martin, Spirit Rider 

Last Tuesday's election is among the most fascinating in U.S. history--at least in my studies.

I have to say that I didn't vote for the president-elect, and I was aghast at his rhetoric during the campaign, but I also feel similarly about the other party. Negative political messages are sickening to me, and thank God, I don't have cable TV anymore, but that negative stuff often works, just like sales manipulation often works, although, I think it is condescending.

But, as I have thought about this turn of events in the last few days, I am excited, enthusiastic, and I find myself in great anticipation of how life will unfold in the near future.

I could not think of a President in history that had no political experience, or who was not a military leader. To have one upcoming who doesn't have that experience is quite interesting. He's not experienced in this job, but he does know how to lead, and as with many of us taking on tasks with which we have no prior experience, we most often rise to the challenge, as I know Trump will. I can hardly wait to watch this unfold.

I watched a short video of the meeting on Thursday of Trump and President Obama. I was surprised to learn that they had never met. How strange it is, and so very real how we can demonize someone that we have never even met. All we know is what we've seen in the news, or word of mouth, or through their writings and public accomplishments. It made me laugh and remember one of my top ten quotes of all time by Abraham Lincoln: "I don't like that man. I must get to know him better." I know I can appreciate that wonderful advice and probably I am not alone.

There's a lot of anguish from what I see online or in the newspaper; albeit, I'm not really giving it any attention. Some are still waging the war I think. Albert K. Strong says, "fighting for and fighting against are two very different things, and yet in one thing they are the same, and that is, struggle, resistance, and fear. Peace contains no struggle. Joy contains no resistance, and love contains no fear."

I am amazed at how I am feeling about this election, and though much that I did vote for did not come to pass, I am joyful, peaceful, and loving toward everyone and everything. I've learned that there is a flow of life and we can either flow with it, or struggle, resist, and be fearful.

I learned from Abraham, Esther Hicks that life is much like a river flowing, and that we can try as long as we want to go against the current, or to swim upstream, push against the tide, but they say, "everything you want is downstream."

I learned from Michael A. Singer, Eckhart Tolle, Buddha, and others that though the mind never stops in its chatter, if we will but let go of our attachment to that and the problems that are created in that chatter, we will rise above and have a more enlightened view.

Though there are many things that I may have disagreed with, the flow of life has demonstrated that it is in charge, and I know that I am in full control of my own choices to flow with that flow of life, or to struggle against it. As I flow with it, I find myself looking for things to appreciate in all of that flowing, and as I appreciate those things and people, I find myself loving all of it.

A few days back, I ended a post with this quote from Brother David Steindl-Rast, which I fully understood as soon as I read his delightfully brief and loving quote: "Joy is the happiness that doesn't depend on what happens." I find myself joyful as I flow with what life is bringing, and I am in joyful anticipation as I flow with it.

"Change Always Comes Bearing Gifts." -- Price Pritchett

Spread Some Joy Today--by flowing with life. There is joy in the flow because everything we want is downstream.

Friday, November 11, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-11-16

[Classic post from 11-29-10]

I thrive on 'em!
I beg for 'em!
I wallow around in 'em
like a pig in slop!"

"I gotta percolate a little. . ."
(referring to a dilemma where there
appears no solution possible
that was pleasing to him.)

-- Paul Newman, as Gov. Earl Long
from the 1989 movie, Blaze

"We are all faced with a series of great opportunities--
brilliantly disguised as insoluble problems."

-- John W Gardner

"The problems of the world cannot possibly
be solved by skeptics or cynics whose horizons
are limited by the obvious realities. We need
men who can dream of things that never were."

-- John F Kennedy

Tonight I watched a movie I don't recall ever seeing before with Paul Newman, called 'Blaze.' I loved it. What a great actor and the story was quite interesting. One part of it just jumped out at me and I had to write it down. It is the first quote above. He said he thrived on problems, begged for them and liked to wallow around in them like a pig in slop. I had to laugh and it was a powerful lesson at the same time.

How many times have we problems and they just get us down and sometimes they even seem to be so hard to solve, or maybe even seem insoluble. I say, 'we,' but maybe it's just me, so I'll use first person: sometimes I've had a pile of problems all at once, some problems have been big, some small, and some that seemed so difficult, I felt like I needed a miracle. Sometimes I would ignore them and hope they would go away, other times, I'd be brave and face them and deal with them as best I could. And, all my life, though the specific nature of the problem may change, the problems yet persist and make themselves well known.

It's enough to get a person depressed, cause to drink, fodder for anger and self-pity, and generally feel crappy about. Phrases like, "if it's not one thing, it's another," have been said many times--in fact, I recall hearing my mother say that when I was small. As they are solved, and it seems they always finally get solved one way or the other, others take their place, and that ever present worry stirs the pot with vigor and delight.

Well, enough of that.

I'm embarking on a new journey: I am developing a love affair with problems! I want to get excited, stimulated, enlightened, and joyful about them! I want to see them for what they really are, to strip them bare and welcome them with open arms. I am learning to truly appreciate problems for what they truly are: contrast.

With my new attitude about problems, I see that which I don't want and that is enlightening. The trick here is to appreciate the messenger, while turning away from the message and focusing on what I really want, which quickly enough becomes the solution.

Now the difference is this: I used to focus on the message, or the problem itself. I would stew about it, repeat it, tell others about it and generally spend a lot of time with it. Now, I appreciate it's arrival, and turn to focus on what I want instead. I respect the contrast of the problem showing me what I don't want, so that I can then choose what I do want and go focus on it.

It is making all the difference. In fact, one of my clients told me how calm and peaceful I looked today. Very interesting. . .

Without Problems, There Would Be No Anything.

Spread Some Joy Today--Get excited about some problems today! It's just the thing that can fire you up if you will let it excite you in that way. The solutions come easily that way.

Thursday, November 10, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-10-16

"We might learn 
from the idea and value 
of having a cabinet of advisers 
like the President does." 

-- Albert K. Strong 

This morning, I was very briefly meditating and I thought of the book, Think and Grow Rich, by Napoleon Hill, and his "Master Mind Group," which he learned from Andrew Carnegie, his mentor and benefactor in the creation of that book, along with others he would write.

I haven't thought about this in a long time, and so this morning, I decided to assemble my own non-physical cabinet of advisers. I imagine being at a large table with my respected and admired advisers. With careful and delightful consideration, here is my cabinet:

Abraham Lincoln
Andrew Carnegie
James Allen
Jim Rohn
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Robin Williams
Harriet Beecher Stowe
Mahatma Gandhi
Mark Twain
Wayne Dyer
Abraham, Jerry Hicks
Eleanor Roosevelt
William Shakespeare
Albert Einstein
Thomas Jefferson

Of the millions that I could have chosen, I think this group is as good as any group could be as a Master Mind Group of Advisers. I intend to spend some time coming together with this diverse group.

Someone might say that there are only two woman on this panel, but I don't see them as male or female. Instead, I see them as they are beyond that limitation.

If you were to choose your Master Mind Group, or your cabinet, who would you choose to consult with?

Diversity AND Wisdom. What A Grand Combination. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by imagining yourself spreading joy.

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

Daily Inspiration 11-9-16

"As I grow older, 
I pay less attention 
to what men say. 
I just watch 
what they do." 

-- Andrew Carnegie 

Wow! I was blown away when I picked up the newspaper this morning. My first reaction was total surprise. Well, not total, because yesterday I considered the possibility that Donald Trump could win. It seemed unlikely, but it was possible, and then. . . there it is on the front page: Trump Wins!

The secondary reaction was laughter. Not laughing at Trump, but laughing at how interesting this was. And, after January 20th, just over two months from now, I will be fascinated more at what he will actually do.

It's quite interesting how many people seem to think the President has so much more power than he or she does. Talk, talk, talk during the campaign, and then when it matters, it is often wrought with problems, road blocks, and a lot of resistance in the game of tug-o-war that is main stream politics. 

The newspaper and online sources say things about how the country is divided. When was this ever not true? As a student of U.S. history, I see that it has always been divided, and perhaps even more divided in times gone by. It will always be divided; however, it is never divided equally, and even then it is never simply one side against the other, as there are many facets dividing each of those segments.

Thinking about that reminded me of a paragraph I recently got from Abraham, Esther Hicks:

"Esther said to us, "Abraham, how come you guys (meaning nonphysical entities) can't get your stories straight? This one says this. That one says that. If we have been talking to God, why doesn't God say the same thing to everyone? Why isn't everybody getting the same message?" And we said, "Everybody isn't asking the same question. Everybody is not at the same point of understanding. Everybody is not even wanting the same thing." We are all about eternalness which means we are about difference. It is in our difference that desires of all kinds come forth, and as all of these new desires pop up, every one of them, even in their difference, is important."

As I teach and promote unconditional love, I find that I am loving the people that were involved in this grand process of the 2016 elections. I am happy for the winners, and I am happy for those who did not win. I am also loving the voters who took the time and energy to make their choices known, one at a time.

I don't have to agree to love them, for to have the need to agree with people to love them is one of the best definitions of conditional love. Instead, I am loving them regardless. We are all asking and wanting different things a good deal of the time, and all of that is worthy of love.

The Older I Get, The More Fascinated I Become, And The More Loving I Am. 

Spread Some Joy Today--by finding peace in what is regardless of the noise that might surround you.