Peace: Let it begin with someone else…

Quote by Albert Einstein picture from WikiImages public domain

Quote by Albert Einstein
picture from WikiImages public domain

“Peace can become a lens through which you see the world. Be it. Live it. Radiate it out. Peace is an inside job.”
Wayne Dyer,Woman’s Day Magazine, Jun. 1, 2007

Peace….one of the aspects of Advent. In order to have peace, true peace, let us suspend some of our prejudices. Let us start with the words God, father, brother. If you let these words stop you cold and turn off your mind, you’ve already stopped the process of peace. You are letting Peace begin with someone else.

We all want peace but we can’t have it in ourselves, in our lives, in our homes, in the places we live, in the world until we open ourselves to it – until we clear our brains and hearts of words that stop us from listening to the thoughts of other people, to the beauty around us, to living in the moment instead of living in a small place called Prejudice.

it’s okay if you don’t believe in God of any kind. It’s perfectly fine if you’d rather say Sister, Mother, Goddess. As long as you say and live and promote peace, you are fine. And once you skip over all the gobblegook, psycho-babble, labels  – you come to the end of the road that says: The End. That’s it, the end. Turn around in a different direction. Open your mind and your heart. Share those dreams of peace. Start anew.

But…but…why can’t somebody do something about…..???? Why can’t YOU do something about….??? Until peace truly begins within, it can’t spread to others. Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with…..ME.

Blessings to you all.  Let there be peace on earth and goodwill to all.

Hope: We all are one

I am not always the fastest or brightest of the group. I freely admit this. But when I do – I am forever changed. It came to me last night, while watching, of all things, 60 Minutes. A segment was on the war in Syria, refugees, starvation – the whole gamut of horrible. The UN has a world feeding program trying to do what it can. In the midst of the desert, in a huge refugee camp, this organization has established a feeding program. No, it is not the usual feeding en masse people bowls of the same food at the same time. A grocery has been built with food the refugees can shop for with vouchers. They get to choose what food they want.

Tears flowed when I viewed a simple image: a woman sprinkling mint(?), parsley(?) over a dish she had prepared for her family. Really? A starving baby brought tears but this woman fixing a meal for her family made me weep? Yes, it did; gut wrenching sobs as I thought of this family’s trek over miles of desert, hunger, fear of separation…and here they were: safe, together, fed, filled with…Hope. By the simple act of being able to prepare this meal, to put her personal touches on the dish, for them to sit down and be able to eat together as a family. I cannot tell you how this moved me. That image reached across an ocean of culture, age, circumstance and reminded me of what it is that keeps us all going: Hope.

On this first Sunday of Advent, the spiritual meditation is Hope. We don’t have to be Christians or have a Christian based belief for Advent and its seasons: Hope, Peace, Love, Joy. Anybody out there disagree with those dreams of Hope, Peace, Love, Joy? These dreams are for us all. Hope is for us all. We hope for a better world, even when we are at our most cynical.

Hope for those of us with a chronic or fatal disease or watching someone we love with that disease, hope for those of us who are hungry, hope for those of us filled with sorrow, hope for those of us struggling with addiction, hope for those of us crushed by guilt, hope for those of us who want to be loved, even animals in rescue shelters get a certain look on their faces when they see someone coming towards them – we all have hope. We all are one.

In the midst of all the rampant consumerism of this time of year, the urgent crazy busy activities, business stuff, party stuff, buying stuff….in spite of this HOPE is still the motivator. Hope for a world where we all are fed, housed, healed, loved, needed. I will not let my Hope be overwhelmed by all the craziness. I will take time to be still, to look at the stars, to gaze at the blue sky, to notice even pigeons flying overhead. They may be a part of a crowded grey cityscape, but still they soar above it. They spread their wings and move on the wind. HOPE. Take a moment and send thoughts of Hope out around you and let it become part of the world at large – scream the word HOPE into the wind, whisper it into the ears of your child, give it to someone who needs it, give it to yourself.

I am posting a video along with this. It is not your typical religious Advent video. I know in my heart, Advent – the coming of Hope, Peace, Love, Joy – is for us all, regardless. This video is by World Order, one of my favorite music groups. They are Japanese. Frequently, their music and dances take place in the middle of busy life – dressed as “salary men”, World Order is anything but the general salary man. All around them, busy busy busy – people moving fast, running to work, being crammed into commuter trains. In the middle of this, the men move slowly and deliberately, apart from the hectic world around them. It is easy to be overwhelmed by all the machines, the noise, the tasks, the must-buy-this mentality.

“Machine Civilization” was written and filmed after the horrific earthquake and tsunami of several years ago. The “main man” of the group, Genki Sudo, urges people to rise from the destruction and rebuild. He also warns of that machine civilozation taking control and of humans losing their hearts, souls, awareness of…HOPE. At the end of the video, we see and hear a bell being rung for those who were lost, but also, for those who survive. “We all are one”. We all desire peace, hope, love, joy: we all are one. I have provided a translation for you below the video.

Machine Civilation
In the morning of machine civilization,
lost shadows, behind their red shields,
wrapped in their grey uniforms,
are imprisoned in the mechanical rhythms.
It’s always the same scene everyday,
where production lines march on nonstop.
However, something is missing
in the twilight of machinery.Where’s the world going?
Won’t somebody tell me?
Are these thoughts illusion?
Are we all one?
Will this world be able to change?
Are these thoughts illusion?People find work to be done.
Humans work, birds sing,
and then they fall into a deep slumber.
“Open your eyes!” He shouts.
It’s always the same scene everyday,
and we live in this brief moment.
Someday we’d surely want a revolution
in the twilight of machinery.Where’s the world going?
Won’t somebody tell me?
Are these thoughts illusion?
Are we all one?
Will we be able to change these thoughts?
We will always smile to our dreams.(Are these thoughts illusion?)Where’s the world going?
Won’t somebody tell me?
Are these thoughts illusion?
Are we all one?
Will we be able to change these thoughts?
We will always smile to our dreams.break through
in your mind
white shirt
white shirt
white shirt
black shirt
black shirt
we are all one
are we all one

Advent: Joy!!!…Yowzer Y’all

This candle is the candle of Joy or the candle of the shepherds. People ask, why shepherds? Why not someone…more important? Shepherds were not outcasts, but they were smelly, kind of rednecky, low on the totem pole of professions. But King David, from whom Jesus descended, was once a shepherd. Jesus was often likened, in prophecies, to be the shepherd of His people. Two songs for you today – Angels We Have Heard on Highand Joy to the World (Unspeakable Joy).

And Bethlehem? Little backwater Bethlehem? David was born in Bethlehem. Prophets said the Messiah would come from Bethlehem, and He did!!! When Jesus was born, in a very messy, human way in a stable, He became accessible to all of us. He was one of us – people put their children in His lap and to play around Him, His feet were callused from much walking, His hands knew hard work.

In God’s perfect time, in the perfect place, Jesus was born. Angels appeared to the shepherds and gave them news of very great joy. Right now, in the city of David, a Savior is born. Run! Go see Him! Be joyful!  Joy for the World.

Advent: Love

This second candle is sometimes called Mary’s candle or the Bethlehem candle as well as love. I stand in amazement and awe that God loves us all so much. His Son came willingly to dwell among us because He loved us so.

The Magnificat – Mary’s Canticle of Praise Luke 1:46-55

My soul magnifies the Lord
And my spirit rejoices in God my Savior;
Because He has regarded the lowliness of His handmaid;
For behold, henceforth all generations shall call me blessed;
Because He who is mighty has done great things for me,
and holy is His name;
And His mercy is from generation to generation
on those who fear Him.
He has shown might with His arm,
He has scattered the proud in the conceit of their heart.
He has put down the mighty from their thrones,
and has exalted the lowly.
He has filled the hungry with good things,
and the rich He has sent away empty.
He has given help to Israel, his servant, mindful of His mercy
Even as he spoke to our fathers, to Abraham and to his posterity forever.

Advent – Hope


December 1 is the first Sunday of Advent. The candle of Prophecy, of Hope. We find Hope in the Light of the World, a way through the darkness.

Psalm 33: 20 – 22
20 We wait in hope for the Lord;
he is our help and our shield.
21 In him our hearts rejoice,
for we trust in his holy name.
22 May your unfailing love be with us, Lord,
even as we put our hope in you.

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