With a deep breath of Love expressed, let us ponder, just a moment, what it is to do our work in this world …
Today, the first Monday in September is always set aside in America to honor workers and a now, mostly forgotten long, old battle with worker’s rights, fair wages and treatment. According to the US Department of Labor, this day is the “yearly national tribute” to the “contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity and wellbeing of our country.” At the least, it’s good to remember that this holi-day is more than BBQs and shopping sales. Inthe heart of existence, can we breathe into what it is to have a life’s work of being the Creator’s Love expressed? I think about this a lot and thought it a good time to share some musings. The recent response to Hurricane Harvey comes to mind with regular folk going to ‘work’ to rescue folks with their personal boats, trucks. In the wake of disaster, the best of who we are as humanity often rises up to shine. For me personally, I have been showing up to do non-paid work for a very long time. One example is the daily Play & Pray Calendar at New Thought Families, now in it’s 10th year! This September, we remember we are one on the calendar. In re-visiting oneness, I am reminded of being oneness blessed. After all these years, I’m not sure how much this daily offering serves the world yet it is work I still feel is worth showing up for.
Like many, if not most or all of you, I have a lot of family work. Spiritually parenting my 17 year old son and 92 year old father in particular. These are jobs that have and do pay me some, in terms of monetary dollars yet they are a 24/7 kind of commitment with immeasurable compensation due and (sometimes) received. I am also called to keep clearing ancestral ‘treasures’ on this earthly plane. This work is not always met with understanding or appreciation by some in my family which can feel like a slap in the face. Whatever the deets, family is always work. From the logistical chores and upkeep to the emotional treading and threading as we weave the web of relational oneness. It is a labor of Love that can feel rewarding or extremely challenging. What keeps my heart straight is aligning with Spirit as the family heartbeat. From this place I am more able to be compassionate, caring … and willing.
Why We Do The Work We Do Jobs! Work! Career! Life Calling! Life Path! Showing up day in and day out to give of ourselves and our gifts. We all know plenty of peeps on the spectrum of labor and labor of Love. I have been one to follow my heart with work, most of my life. Always a creator with a prolific body of work in the Leaping Literacy Library, I have to say the ‘ordinary’ job of being Jeremiah’s mom is one of the best jobs ever and I have been doubly blessed by a generous compensation of child support. I know that so many on this planet haven’t been afforded this aspect of freedom in choosing how they feed their children and themselves. We often work … just … for the money. I have found that many, including most in my family, seemingly only value the jobs I do that actually pay money. Which is funny when you think about how someone like Mother Teresa is revered for her life’s work. From our PeaceMaker page on Mama T:
Do not think that love, in order to be genuine, has to be extraordinary.
What we need is to love without getting tired. ~ Mother Teresa
When thinking of work and the kind of giving she did, it is remarkable to know that not only was Mother Teresa not in it for the money, she spent many of her days in darkness … feeling empty in her giving. This has been well documented and so I hope that after she left this earthly plane, she did indeed receive her just reward, aka in her soul journey, she experienced her great work as worthwhile.
Good works are links that form a chain of love. ~ Mother Teresa
To You Who Gave~ By Me (Laurie Story V)
Mother Teresa who gave to the poor …
did you ever wonder what it was all for?
When you listened to your heart, was it always true?
And in your endless giving, who gave to you?
In your selfless living, did you feel the grace?
Were you filled with the same mercy that you gave?
Did you ever soak in a warm bubble bath?
Did you have a good friend that made you laugh?
Were there arms to hold you? A voice in your ear?
Did anyone speak to your doubt and fear?
Were you blessed with at least one comforting friend;
someone you could trust in and forever depend?
Beautiful Mother Teresa, you ministered to us all,
even if your faith faltered, you answered the call.
And if you ever wondered what it was all for,
know now that your love, loves you back ever more. ~ Laurie Story
So! Does a labor of Love have to involve suffering and selfless giving?! Let’s hope not! Or we would never plant flowers or paint pictures. I hope that whatever your work is in this world, you honor the inner creator as well as the Great Creator that breathed life into us all! From the spiritual perspective, our job is to keep affirming and living, “I am one with all that is” in an honoring of all expressions of the divine, especially the ones that prove hard to see the aspects of their divinity.
For my part, I’ll just keep being me; showing up for many in my life as well as for Leaping Literacy! Below is our September Free Shelf super stocked with a celebration of creativity, spirituality and trees! I also am posting our new offerings for Creativity Classes locally. The studio is new. The offerings are newly revised for the fresh space. The leap of faith is ancient. I am showing up to do the work with a playful invitation for others to come and experience their own joy and creativity. It’s good work. I am grateful for it. And so grateful for you ~ for ALL the work YOU are called to do. Namaste, Love!
Thanks for joining me here; let’s begin with a group hug! From the depths of shadow, let us align with full moon light reminding us of the Love we are. Deep breath. When we are stressed individually, collectively ~ both! ~ shadows, aka dark side, sabotage, negative patterns can grow incrementally feeding on the energy. Are you wrestling with shadows or rising up to shine? Most likely, some of both? My shadows and risings are showing up here after at least a week of repeated attempts as I show up over and over … overthinking, overeating, overdoing, overwhelming! Yes, I have been sitting in extras with some of my shadows as I navigate the intense energy that has been of late for most of us here in the States. Ultimately, I also believe in divine order and the omnipresent good that is always speaking to our hearts. The personal & collective shadows are just the things to call us home to the best of ourselves.
What a wild couple of weeks it has been since the last voting voices blog post here … today, as we honor the whimsical, wise Letter W in keeping with our alphabetic year, we will also speak to the current climate still swirling since our U.S. election. The discussion here includes the usual spiritual living applications mixed with history, the Electoral College, witches, wounds, words, grace, gratitude, ThanksLiving … weaving it all through Spirit & shadows! There are 3 new songs embedded in this post ~ woo hoo! And I know, I know, overwhelm, whew! 😦 Deep breath … and full permission to skim through this absurdly long offering to whatever part(s) serves you!
Perhaps the volume of what I am sharing is best said in this brand new song that speaks to the shadows and how we are called to shine through them ~ indeed, rise above them:
Shadows tall and long are all around.
Even ones you love have let you down. Feelin’ dismayed, betrayed, broken apart …
Let the cracks allow more light to shine through your heart! (Chorus)
How deep is your shadow today? Do you feel ancestors alive in your DNA? Painful blame, shame, name casting games … Justice grows and knows how to chase all our shadows away! So rise up and shine! Darkness is at the door.
Answer with your light; shine brighter than ever before! Shine the light that seeds your soul! Shine the Love that makes you whole.
Shine the Love … that shortens your shadow … Shorten your shadow … Shine brighter than ever before!
Shine more … explore the shadows …. How long and deep … your light … your shadow …
Hear the song here:
The volume of voices we spoke of last time has been turned up with many engaged in a war of words crisscrossing the world wide web and the concrete streets themselves. America is experiencing some of the biggest birthing pains we’ve felt in a while … maybe since 1968?! This election and the president elect have given rise to a wealth of voices spewing intolerance and hate. It’s as if the sleeping giant was awakened with voices ringing out in every corner. Of course, there are so many examples out there that I will not feed energy to by repeating them here. The spotlight is on the shadows so we can see better who stands where. Families refusing to sit together at Thanksgiving, FaceBook friends unfriending each other are some of the more benign yet prevalent fallout. The clock seems to have been turned back as a backlash against the inevitable global family we be with all people treated fairly; freedom and justice for all! Ultimately, it is all a cry for Love and healing. So many of us felt truly heartbroken at what seems to be a victory for racism, misogyny & demagoguery. I have been experiencing heartbreak yet at the same time the incredible rising that is the formidable human Spirit. Yes, the good is always present and Love always prevails. We are all of us the walking wounded and all capable of and willing for wellness. The pain body shadow we all carry is like much of our lives, largely unconscious. We carry the pain of our ancestors, as well as the sins of our fathers. The word sin is an archery term that means to miss the mark, to make a mistake. As human beings, we certainly all make mistakes individually and collectively. We all have the scars of oppression. Our souls remember it all. One of the reasons I kept crying and feeling betrayed was the shadow of my own sexual abuses and harassments that had been green lighted in this campaign. So many men ~ and women! ~ were willing to accept Trump’s behavior and “locker room” talk. Indeed, they gave him their vote for the highest office in the land with a willingness to turn away from that and all of his other hurtful, hateful talk and bullying demonstrations. At the least, we have all seen manners were given a backseat when the biggest bully on the playground was elected to the highest office in the land. And again! Coming out of the shadows into the light, is part of transformation! One of the positives that has arisen is the willingness to be a warrior or warrioress for any of the disenfranchised people the Trump campaign targeted. Included in the positive stirrings are personal calls to action for so many of us along with the expanded education and awareness of the election process itself. Voter fraud and suppression are real and being investigated in many states. Hillary Rodham Clinton won the popular vote and the % numbers continue to rise. In case you don’t know (I didn’t!), our President will be elected on December 19th. I am among millions with the hope that history will once again be made that day.
The President has not been elected yet. This will happen with the Electoral College Votes due on December 19th. If you have been wondering how it works when someone like Clinton (or Gore) win the popular vote but lose the Election, that’s due to the Electoral College. That is also how a race with so many millions of voters is called within hours while weeks later, votes are still being counted.
There are indeed some great YouTube videos explaining the Electoral College ~ and more being made by the day! Here are 2 by a sharp lawyer, CPG Grey who describes everything in detail. In this 1st one, he talks about the December vote starting around 3:00 min.
As spiritual beings having a physical experience, is it wise to be caught up in all the workings of government and social injustices? As someone who lived in a spiritual bubble for a long time, and still do to an extent ~ it is much easier to be at peace and joyful in living when you look the other way or la la la it away out of earshot. Yet! We belong to each other. To fully take care of each other, it requires speaking up and acting as necessary. We must always figure out what’s ours to do ~ I didn’t start or run the petition above but I am choosing to share it. Like everything else, there are layers to this. The hope of a different outcome (however small) helped me move on from heartbreak into action. Truthfully, Jeremiah showed me videos about the Electoral college earlier this year and I remarked how messed up it was but did not engage with any amount of passion or action ~ until now.
What? When? Where? Why?
Many on this New Thought path say to just ignore and rise above it all. We each must decide for ourselves. At one point Jeremiah said, “Mom, you function much better in your bubble.” My teenage son had never seen me so sad and undone. I explained to him that I feel called to balance being aware of (some of) the unfair without allowing it to tear me apart. I am called to speak up and do what I can while also being in joyful ThanksLiving as much as I can. I have been wearing feathers in my hair as I affirm, “I stand with you Standing Rock”. As told last post, I hold the wise buffalo energy for the water protectors as I can from where I am.
Witches Were Wise Ones
Also mentioned in the last post, and saved for this W discussion, the week before Halloween, I was part of a church service about witches with an interfaith minister friend. Most of us have no clue about the true history of what a witch is, what really happened with witch trials, etc. It is explained beautifully and succinctly here:
From Kate Marks in Circle Of Song: It is important for us to reclaim the word witch; to associate it with true wisdom, positive power and healing. Witch originally comes from the Celtic word Wicca. It means the wise one, the one who practices the craft of the wise. Witches (predominately women) worshipped nature and the Goddess. With the rise of Christianity, especially in Europe, witches came to be seen as heretics, as a threat to the power of the church and the growing patriarchy, many were persecuted and murdered. The height of the witch hunts occurred from the 14th to the 18th centuries, killing between nine and eleven million people. It was not until 1951 that the last anti-witch law in England was repealed.
Part of what happened in this unprecedented election, was that for the first time a woman ran for President. The unconscious shadow was not ready to accept this possibility. It is still widely held at least in the subconscious ~ that a woman should not have this kind of power. The media ran story after story about how untrustworthy she was and people believed it all though it was mostly speculation ~ some see it as a witch hunt. Obviously, we all see the world and have our truth the way we do ~ I’m pointing here to some of the subconscious programing that makes up our truth. I have been reminded of Mary Magdalene who is disputed throughout Christianity for who she was and who she was to Jesus; Prostitute? Disciple? Bride of Christ? Ultimately her message is about unconditional Love; showing up as you are in all your good despite what others think of you or say about you. I believe that Hillary Rodham Clinton is a very wise and strong woman who does indeed live by the beautiful Methodist creed her mother taught her, ‘Do all the good you can, for all the people you can, in all the ways you can, as long as ever you can.’ She will keep doing that good ~ as will we all!
So! Spiritual teachings! In the church service I led Bonnie Lockhart’s wonderful “Who Were The Witches” song as part of our education. I led a meditation speaking the words of the new song of mine that follows here. The calling of this song is to holy restitution ~ as we know that we are all in the circle of persecution as both persecutor & victim … at different points in our lifetime(s). Song MP3 and lyrics are here:
Fires are burning, yearning for justice. Our hearts are timeless flames of forgiveness. We’re all in the circle of persecution. We meet in the center … now … for holy restitution.
For all of the wise ones burned as false witness. For all of the witches, we beg your forgiveness. For all who’ve been enslaved. For all who are brave. We honor you now for the lives that you gave.
We wipe all the tears cried in times of trial. We sift through the ashes of fearful denial. We won’t be afraid of all who are wise. For all who were denied, we bring justice to the lies.
And so we go with the wisdom we know. In memory of the wise, Love won’t be denied. We honor the divine, in the circle of time. Chorus We are the center … NOW … of holy restitution.
And so it is that we can continue to expand the circles of time, within our own hearts and minds. We can be the holy restitution right here, right now. And we can reach back in the circle of time for all of the wounded ones in our ancestry … especially as the backlash reminds us to do so.
Working it out!Our Leaping Literacy Library alphabetic expressions have crossed into the Letter X, who, for our purposes is inseparable from silent e. We’re going to keep the W offerings on the Free Shelf and add the (e)X’s in there tomorrow! Beautiful UK mum and spiritual teacher/healer Kate Beddow has a wonderful adventure in the SoulPlay section ~ a full 30 minute video, Wishing In The Woods ~ woo hoo! One of the brand new alliterative Laurie StorEBooks is there too. The work of Leaping Literacy Library & Creative Spirit Families is looking toward 2017 with expansions and perhaps a few omissions … Continue the daily Play & Pray Calendar after 8.5 years? Keep showing up to this blog after weekly or bi-weekly posts for nearly 6 years? For who? You?! Blessed to have so much freedom of decision and expression! Change is always an option for new good to rise up and shine from the shadows!
ThanksForgiving & ThanksLiving
So, since my processing and beach time bring this ridiculously long sharing up to a few days before our (U.S.) Thanksgiving, lets settle in the good grace of this holi-day and what it offers us before I close. In giving thanks, we are able to raise our vibration and appreciation for this sacred gift of life. We all have incredible blessings to be thankful for! In reaching for gratitude, we can invite our hearts to let go of whatever is in the way … practice some ThanksForgiving at the table as we allow all the judgments that keep us in our righteous anger to soften into compassion … Allow ourselves to let the grace of goodness bring us home into unconditional Love with the trust and knowing that the higher good is ~ always ~ unfolding. Living the art of ThanksLiving is to be in a grateful flow of appreciation for ALL that is! Look to our youngest teachers … very young children are in the joy and wonder of the now. They burst into anger or tears when they feel it and they just as quickly let it go to return to Love and joy. We ARE so blessed! Let’s sing it! Here’s one of the simple, alphabetic Short Spirit Songs of 2016:
Yes, we are blessed! Yes, we are blessed!
Blessings fill my life and we say yes, yes, yes! Yes, we are blessed! Yes, we are blessed!
We receive, We give thanks, We pass it on, We are blessed!
May your Thanksgiving be full of blessings, ThanksForgiving as needed and lots of ThanksLiving moments of Love, joy, and goodness. May all of our wistful wonderings and wonderful wishes find their truth in the shadows and in the light of Love that we are made of. The Light Of Love that is … always … and in all ways. Namaste, Love!
PS! 4th Song ~ For Humanity!
Our 2016 theme song got a bit of a tweak this week ~ check it out here! Thanks for singing … for humanity!
Thanks for sharing a mindful moment here … I am posting in the afterglow of the July 4th celebrations~ Happy Birthday America! For any who like to reach a bit beyond the BBQs into the heart fireworks of true freedom, I salute you! And bow to you. Namaste.
For as much as I celebrate the freedoms of our free nation, and appreciate all the freedom fighters who have gone before us to make it so …. I truly treasure the inner freedoms more ~ forgiveness, allowance, alignment … the freedoms of imagination, inspiration and celebration itself! In that Spirit, here’s a little voice from our New Thought Families spiritual literacy video sectionof the Leaping Literacy Library:
Home Spirit Celebration: Freedom Of Forgiveness Passcode: LJFree
Jeremiah’s young voice in that video is narrating and celebrating from one of our daily, multimedia calendar pages, way back when, even as the now 16 year old Jeremiah is winging away from our home nest all summer! Our current calendar and Free Shelf at Leaping Literacy Library feature Letter N which has us nurturing nature and letting nature nurture us! From imagination celebrations to Niagara Falls to nesting to natural beauty Lake Tahoe and an Earth Gym demonstration from SoulPlay Rachel Flower, N is naturally nourishing!With our daily, multimedia New Thought Families Play & Pray Calendar, we are reminded to notice newness and reverently kneel with nature negating the negativity of life which seems to be working overtime these days! In this celebration of freedom and life ~ especially in the face of what can feel so oppressive ~ we are reminded to rise up like fireworks in the sky, rising from the inside out, naming and claiming the truth of the splendor of who we truly be!
Negate Negativity: Denials And Affirmations
In New Thought, the use of denial and affirmation can be powerful when focused on the inner truths of freedom. To deny is not to insist that something doesn’t exist, rather, it is to focus on the positive affirmation of the highest and best you while you disallow the outcome or impact in your life of the negativity you negate or deny. In this way, forgiveness is a denial. You are denying anger or resentment to eat away at your peace and joy. Whatever thoughts and emotions we experience ~ especially repeatedly ~ we are using them to shape our outer reality. When we focus on what we truly desire from the inner truth of who we be, we deny the power of negativity to bring us down as we affirm the holy presence that is always present in divine order. For a (more!) clear explanation of Denials and Affirmations, see this post from Finding Unity. And so it goes that we mindfully measure meaning of what we’re nourishing … For more about New Thought … our webpage is here. And! The Association For Global New Thoughtis hosting a weekly webinar that begins this Monday, July 11. Check it out and sign up here~ it’s free!
And! Yes, there’s more … Stephen Dinan, founder and CEO of The Shift Network is launching a new book that engaged my heart so fast, I did the Amazon 1 click! Yes I am excited to read “Sacred America, Sacred World” available with launch bonuses today and tomorrowhere! I am hoping this book lays out spiritual wisdom for nurturing our national nest. Here is author Stephen Dinan with the book trailer:
And as we nurture our nest with the best of us, so shall freedom rain and reign … with a true liberty and justice for all. Of course it’s a tall order but there is only infinity in divinity and I see, know, and affirm divine order ~ always! This ~ denial ~ and affirmation really help me align and realign with peace, joy, and freedom.
FREEDOM! Our Feathers Of Freedom Family Camp is coming! You can still join us for sacred Sierra time … Sacred You, Sacred Family! Our family nests are indeed naturally nurtured with time away to pray and play, connect and reflect. Ask your inner wise one; our camp may just feed a need for you and yours … heart and soul!
So, thank you again, for making mindful meaning and feelings of freedom as we nurture our nests with our highest and best. Namaste, Love!
Namaste Free Floating Feathers Of Faith Filled Fulfillment!
I greet you in celebration of Equinox, Spring, New Year & Christian Holy Week/Easter ~new beginnings all noted on our daily Play & Pray Calendarpages at New Thought Families. Wicca/PaganOstara & Mabon Equinox ~ March 20 Christianity Palm Sunday March 20
Baha’i Hindu Happy New Year~ March 21
This also comes with a prayer for all those in Belgium who suffered the latest, large scale terrorist attack from Isis this week ~ the insanity of humanity that can indeed, try our faith. As sad and unsettling as it is, I remain in humanitarian solidarity with the goodness and light that will prevail. May we all continue to send heart thoughts out to our global family.On the home front, I am still physically and mentally recovering from our Disney trip last week ~ and the cold that invaded my tired body upon arrival home. I am still processing how, in the happiest place on earth, there could be so much discontent. Here’s a shot from a parade that had me grinning ear to ear (Chesire Cat style!) the whole time. Check the crowd for smiles … ~!
I was a happy fairy flitting around Disney after being band mom ~ the kids did great in their workshop and performance and then they scattered throughout the park. I was left, that 1st day, for an incredible 8 hours by myself. In a sea of people, I didn’t see 1 familiar face yet I smiled and sparkled with many. I had so much fun! I was free. Free to be happy. Free to keep choosing happiness. Free to experience my beloved Small World: Come on! Take the cruise in your imagination right now! Or maybe your prefer to twirl in a teacup? There’s one waiting for you! Whee! Always free to be!
The 2nd and full day in the park , I hung with a buddy named Faith, who tortured me with riding Indiana Jones (I don’t do roller coasters!) and I tortured her with Small World (seriously, what’s not to love?! I went four times!) and we found ways to be in free flowing choice, cooperation and communication throughout the day. Faith was one of our students who is recovering from injuries so getting through the park was extra challenging for her. I think we made a good team and we both had a good time. It was a warm 86 degrees and that, along with long lines made for what seemed like an inordinate amount of grumpy faces all around. I did my part to remind people to smile and enjoy the ‘happiest place on earth’ though in the end, everyone always has that freedom of choice. The experience has made me deeply ponder the human propensity to suffer ~ even when we’re greatly blessed! Just what makes it so counterintuitive to fly free?!
On day 4 of our little spring break getaway, we spent a few hours at the beach before the loooooooooooooong bus ride home. I took a glorious beach walk, picked up some (art!~) seashells and some trash. I find the calling irresistible … there is that freedom to serve everywhere we go … In getting back home, I was piled up with the ‘homework’ of 2 homes (ours and my father’s) + the physical cold and the depressive darkness that sometimes descends upon me after vacations and times of visioning ~ which this trip was big on. It can be overwhelming for me to facilitate what is after seeing so much of what can be. In this Holy Week, I am reminded of the lessons of Jesus … as he goes from celebratory palm fronds through betrayal, his Garden of Gethsemane anguish and the horrible crucifixion and suffering endured before his ultimate Spirit Rising of Easter. I look around my personal circumstances and that of our world … the unspeakable Presidential primary voting in this country and all the violence and unrest in so many places worldwide. So much suffering and unfairness that seems to prevail and yet … I have faith in the light. I have faith that always and in all ways the light will triumph to free each of us and all of us from the darkness of our own imprisonment. And! We know that darkness is required for germination. So it is with faith that we allow our seeds to freely germinate in the darkness and grow with grace into the light. And we choose. We choose to know that humanity can overcome all darkness to grow on in grace filled light and Love. No matter what.
So in that Spirit … of allowance and acceptance of how humanity grows and how freedom rings, I will speak to my own horrified amazement that so many Americans are voting for Trump in our primary elections; a man who uses his freedom of speech to bully others and perpetuate racism and anti-American values of building a wall vs. continuing to embrace immigrants. Yet in this as in so many other instances, I look to the children to uphold the light of Love for the hope of humanity. With some reservation, I offer you this conversation:
As for our little corner of Leaping Literacy, there’s a few more days for featured F on the Free Shelf; we start the cross over onto G on Friday ~ Good Friday to be exact! Good Friday. Whether or not you observe the Christian observance of Christ’s crucifixion this Friday, may we all pause to bring the light of forgiveness, faith, fortitude, and freedom to the family of humanity … especially to those who perpetuate the crucifying insanity. We can and we will continue to grow a garden of goodness through the faith filled freedom of grace. It does indeed live in each of us. And so it is. Namaste, Love! P.S.! We’ve extended early bird pricing for one more week to save on Freedom Family Campregistration! And! Happy Easter Blessings, rollover surprises onsite here.
Thank you for being here for this week’s trust walk celebration of faith and the fearless letter F! Our daily Play & Pray Calendaris freely flowing faith this week and next. In our Creative Spirit Families alphabetic expressions, F has found us still and forever catching up yet fully tethered in faith trusting forward motion! For your part, I hope this finds you floating free as a feather … at least in this mindful, full breath moment … For my part, I spent the day on a bus with the (Jeremiah’s) high school band. In a hotel tonight, they’ll play at Disneyland tomorrow. I, the band mom, am here in service to many, sometimes frayed and frazzled, callings of my heart. In the freedom and fun loving part of things, I am here in service to being a mom to many, at least in tiny part, and I am here for the Spirit of fun and frolic. Feathers, stickers, wings, glitter … I’ve got it all … following the faith filled footpath of … fairy … ME! Playful me is here to experience and facilitate fun for others ~ in twinkling, trusting fairy style! Tired me is wondering what was I thinking?! Business me (yes, there is one!) is forlorn at the fallow efforts actually applied thus far for what was mapped out for Membership March. Yes, my money making efforts seem to (yet again!) be going by the wayside. And! In the midst of all of it, I sit here now tethered in faith and trusting divine order. The moments and days leading up to this getaway have been full to the brim with family service infused with ongoing fortitude and forgiveness for the work play of Leaping Literacy Library and gathering as Creative Spirit Families. This last week, a plan with beautiful partnership came together for our first local PlayShop of 2016+ some of our beautiful families are utilizing March’s early bird sign up for Feathers of Freedom Camp. YES! Faith … Freedom … And Feathers!
Last year, after 10 years, I changed the name of our fun filled family camp … from Feathers Of Faith to Feathers of Freedom … for a few reasons. Faith can sometimes be a misleading word. I view faith as an unshakable though sometimes fragile substance within that gives Spirit substance to our lives. Though many find faith through religion, faith is far more than a framework based on beliefs. It is an essence of our souls. Faith is not belief without proof, but trust without reservation. ~ St. Thomas Aquinas
In the case of our family camp, I got the feeling far too many times that the word faith brought a question of religion. Our camp (and other work) holds space for any and all religious tolerance, education & inspiration. Yet we are all about Spirit of the heart, Love expressed in so many ways … hence, the freedom! Our camp itself has a plethora of activities to choose from so denotes the freedom to choose the experiences most fitting for each family. We come together to be creative community, and to embrace the holy within each of us and all of us in playful, appreciative, celebratory ways. The sacred Sierras that nest us for the weekend are soul nurturing sustenance. The whole of it makes room for feeling more freedom. MMM good! My favorite fun and frolic! Do join us if you’re called!
And in a few hours … I’ll be in Disneyland for a different backdrop of family fun. Some years back, while in Disneyworld, I had a huge vision of Creative Spirit Families … theme park style! ~ And so in divine order faith and trust, I am open to whatever fun, frolic, and forward motion awaits me and our merry band tomorrow! Before I publish this and surrender to sleep so I can be fun fairy me tomorrow, I wish to briefly speak to 2 of our F fostered spiritual literacy lessons … family & friends … and faith filled manifestation. Ooh kinda big stuff for a few words … so it will be up to your meditative mind and faith filled heart to draw what you may need here to carry forward fostering with fortitude! And feel free to share your insights here with me and others too! Family & Friends!
The above picture is a much younger Jeremiah who I admit in hushed tones that I still miss. In being here now for my 16 year old ~ as well as my 90 year old dad ~ faith is the knowing that the changing landscape of our relationships is strongly tethered in divine order unfolding. The circle of life that holds and loves us can be trusted and is worthy of our faith. As family members and friends change, or even come and go, having faith in our hearts gives us the freedom to keep showing up for each other. As with most of life, I find that if I stay stuck in what is “supposed to or should be”, I will completely miss the blessing of what is. We are always free to feel Love or fear. And whatever doesn’t feel good most likely is (deep) rooted in fear. Fear can definitely be a very tricky bedfellow. Lurking in each of us, it often takes awareness to Love it into safety, surrender … and divine order co-creation. Ask In Faith The few words I will give this vast subject will mostly be sung below in a vintage music video of “Ask In Faith”. The actual recorded version sample with lyrics is here on the Trust What You Hear CD page. So as the video attends to, the basic formula for Law Of Attraction is found in a bible verse from Mark that reads, “Whatever you ask for in faith, believe you have received it and it will be yours.” For my part, I continue to (re)align all the callings of my heart with this faith filled belief. And you? Be with the song and see what comes up! Ask In Faith is also found on our current Free Shelfwith a total of 5 fab songs, Fay’s Gray Bay Laurie StorEBook and Freedom Tales with internationally renowned storyteller Luisah Teish. Thank you for sharing a mindful, faith filled moment here my friend. I pray that whatever you are asking for in faith, you are indeed able to not only conceive but believe and achieve it! For in this full circle of co-creation, we are truly FREE! Namaste, Love!
Namaste Shining Bright Lights!
Greetings to you this 2nd light filled day of December as we usher in this month’s deLIGHT as well as sing a final note on the series of Thanks Living we’ve been celebrating and remembering here this last November. And though we are shining in luminous light, this week’s musings begin in the dark …In the midst of our holiday Thanks Living last week, I found myself battling darkness and what ensued was a giant wall of resistance. Of course I know what we resist persists but sometimes knowing and acting can be a dark chasm apart. I did remember the November lessons in Thanks Living and they did help expand the light as Deepak Chopra puts so well. So in this Spirit of expansion and renewal, let’s review …
Our Thanks Living series began with giving thanks for our ancestors in a full circle of life ~ grateful for our own living breath even and especially through the eyes and experience of death. We looked at how our loved ones carry on in the world … pollinating in us and in our memories of them …Part 2 of Thanks Living was to be grateful moment by moment in the circle of time. Turning and returning to goodness and happy, loving thoughts each mindful moment. In part 3, we visited forgiving for Thanks Living. I found myself doing a lot of this in the triggered family moments. It is truly so freeing to accept people for who they are and release for peace.In last week’s part 4 Thanks Living post, we (re)visited what it is to be awake and aware and how nature is always calling us home to our hearts to experience more of this truth of who we truly be. Which brings us to part 5 … that Life itself is grateful for YOU! Now, as I ever choose to expand the light and allow this possibility in, the whole concept has been under scrutiny in the wake of the gobbling darkness vying for my heart. In the divine order of life, I am seeing how the persistent dark resistance has allowed me to go ever deeper into the seeds of me that seek the light. All of life is a call to growth and the light is ever beckoning … to every blade of grass … to every lost soul … grow, grow, grow! On today’s Oh Holy Light Play & Pray Calendar, we embrace both light and dark, knowing Love is in all of it. In my winter Solstice song, Light Of Love, we reach through the darkness towards the light of truth ~ us as Love expressed. You see, as the song sings, “the Light is Life itself calling us to grow.” And as we do, all of creation smiles and expands as more and more Love. Of course it can be argued that just as the skies glow with color whether or not we notice them, that life is doing life with our growth and participation or in spite of our resistance. From my human perspective, I can only liken it to what it is to be a parent … we love our children unconditionally though when they rise up into more fullness and goodness, we rise up too. I can’t help but think God smiles when we are kind, creative, loving … And every time we rise up against the darkness of our limitations to grow on, Life, Love, Creator rises up to meet us too ~ and even says “Thank you for shining you!”
So, for my part, I just had a round of familial judgements about my work and lack of ability to make money ~ my own worst fears and doubts. Then my computer has decided to no longer work with my old web design program. And! I am still called to the Leaping Literacy Membership Library! So here’s this week’s Free Shelf celebrating & singing Light: Sing with us and check out the super shiny, sparkly, SoulPlay playmate Jan Cercone ~ sure to brighten up any (dark) day!
What shine in your divine design is calling to you? Is there an insistence and persistence even through any and all resistance? Whatever darkness may be covering your shining light at the gateway of this Holiday season, may you know that Life is ever calling you to grow, to Love, to shine. And in the Spirit of Thanks Living, perhaps Life is ever grateful to shining, growing you! Maybe, just maybe, Life itself truly is blessed every time you shine yes. Namaste, Love!
Namaste Vibrant Voices of Leaf Dance!
In this beautiful fall moment, my heart is full of contemplation, celebration, and compassion. In the wake of another unthinkable attack on humanity, I have been holding heart space with our global brothers and sisters as well as many in my immediate family who are hurting. Ah, if only we were as deciduous leaves in our life and death cycle … glowing colors of change throughout the seasons ending in a rapid, victorious dance down to return to the earth! Fall leaves, I celebrate you!
There are so many ways to celebrate life and navigate death and to forgive the injuries sustained along the way. In this 3rd post giving attention to ThanksLiving, let’s sit with life’s tears a moment and the freeing gift of forgiveness. How can we not cry when we are hurt, when our loved ones suffer, when our global family is harmed and heart broken. Forgiveness is a powerful force of the heart and can sound like an empty word or concept sometimes. Let’s practice some right now, this peaceful moment. Think of something that hurts your heart; something you have or are suffering yourself or something that may be outside yourself like the attacks in Paris. Hold the hurt for a moment and let your mind/heart go where it wants to … blame? Anger? Deep sadness? Now let’s think of forgiveness … if it’s just a word, let it be so. Maybe you are already great at this … bring that energy here. Ask your heart to open up room for Love to hold the wound/wounded … Ask your heart to allow the power of forgiveness to bring peace to all those you blame or feel anger towards. Let the peace envelop your heart in angel wings of light. Speak the words inside and/or aloud, “I forgive you.” And if necessary, “I forgive me.” Breathe into it and feel the peace and Light of Love fill you up. Do you feel lighter? Freer? If so or if not, know that it’s a start. Forgiveness like any spiritual practice comes naturally but usually after some time and choice to keep implementing it. Think of it as necessary heart, soul & joy maintenance!
The cleaning process of release and forgiveness can be important stepping stones to walking the path of ThanksLiving. Everything in this world needs some clean up now and again if not regularly like clockwork. I have written here before about some great tools like Colin Tipping’s Radical Forgiveness, Dr. Brad Nelson’s The Emotion Code, Alex Lloyd’s The Healing Codes, Access Consciousness to name a few. Prayer, intention, meditation, allowance and surrender are also right up there ~ linked within!
You see, I find for me, and I think this true of humanity, we cannot truly be in Thanks Living when we are harboring the heaviness of hurting hearts. We need the clean sweep to free ourselves up to live joyfully and gratefully. As I posted here in the September post, Balance Beckons, among the raging Butte Fire that devastated so many families’ homes, I believe that part of what is ours to do is to lift humanity up by gratefully living the blessings we are so richly blessed with. Yes hold heart space for the pain of others and absolutely do what we can to help but part of what we can do is to fully embrace the good we have joyfully in ongoing Thanks Living.
Our November PlayShop was yesterday and we did just that; we held the doors open for grateful celebration! We made appreciation chains and gratitude rocks as well as stone soup to eat and a creativity stone soup bowl:I love our PlayShops and the beautiful families who come. One of our moms had been in a serious car wreck and she was back with her whole family ~ thank you God! Her young daughter sat with her eyes closed and a beautiful smile in a heart filled space while I sang “Grateful For You” ~ it really filled my heart! We drummed our thanks, and sang We Thank You and Soup Of The Soul. We heart shared gratitude and blessings and colorful art creations. Here are a few invitations I gave the families, and now you too, for the old paper chains as holiday decorations ~ and family affirmations! 1. Take colorful paper strips of paper and decorate them with affirmations of Joy, Love, Peace or anything you are living and/or want more of.
2. Write wonderful words about your family members … Create the chain between now and Thanksgiving and then read them together. You can make it like a riddle and have everyone guess who each one is about!
3. You can simply write things you are grateful for and build your chain up over time. Jeremiah and I did this for a few seasons and a Home Spiritual practice video from our New Thought Families archives is on the Leaping Literacy Free Shelfthis week. Also on the Shelf is a Gratitude Walk I took a few years back on my birthday and the Laurie StorEBook Snake In My Birthday Cake in further birthday celebration ~ yes, happy birthday to ME! Whee! I’m turning (gulp) 53! Our SoulPlay featured fun one this week is Harriet Tubman Wright of The Wright Resortwho was our Spirit Sanctuaries Counselor for the SoulPlay Camp. 3 of Harriet’s videos are on the Free Shelf with her building altars and play, play, PLAYing with us! Yes, mixing 2 of my most favorite things ~ sacredness and silliness ~ thank you Harriet! Altars are a powerful way to super charge the energy of your home or any space to bring in … beauty, gratitude, mindfulness, peace … forgiveness! Anything goes!
So yes, this week is full of Thanks Living celebrations … tomorrow/today! (long post process!) is my birthday and I will be pretending to be 3 instead of 53, with no responsibilities, just painting, singing, a teddy bear picnic! On Wednesday, Jeremiah and some of his drama classmates are performing a preview for some of my family of the student written one act play entitled “14 Main” … remember the old store and home of my ancestors I’ve been cleaning out? It’s going onstage! I’m hoping my 90 year old father can be forgiving of the teenage poetic license! Jeremiah has also made his way into the community theatre production of “It’s A Wonderful Life” which opens Friday .. with lots of meetings, appointments … and a teddy bear picnic in between … indeed another full week of Thanks Living!
Whatever your week has in store, may you be filled with deep peace ~ through forgiveness if need be ~ and may you be fully free to enJOY a week of Thanks Living. Thank you for the gift of your presence here and in the world. Namaste, Love!