Thursday, July 31, 2008

The Prism that is Goddess

Greetings, gentle readers...

A rabbi with whom I am familiar was writing in response to a series of posts in a forum. The posts were started by a woman who seems to be firm in her personal faith and path, but is pushy, domineering and intolerant of others whose journey is different than her own. The back and forth has continued for days, with no relenting on anyone's part. Well, the rabbi wrote some of the best words I've read in a long time and I wanted to share them with you:

"We all dance in different colored rays of light that all trace their way back to the prism of reality which refracts the one light that comes from beyond. If we are open we realize this fact and appreciate the other rays, even though we are most secure within one
ray of color. We travel not only different paths, but even those of who share the same pathway are not standing at the same point on the road."

His writing is always eloquent and I wish I could sit under his teaching. He has a way of looking at life and the differences in people that astounds me. It is true; we all dance in different colored rays.

The word "dance" first caught my attention. We are in a dance with the Divine. A dance can be quite intimate. Have you ever truly watched a ballroom dance competition? There is a look in the eye, a movement in the step that brings a heart to the performance. It is that intimacy that we all seek along our personal path, be that songs of worship or ritual in the forest.

The rabbi continues to describe "different colored rays of light." We all have a journey. It is a personal journey; a spiritual journey that is different for all. The different colored rays are like the paths: Judaism, Paganism, Christianity, Buddhism, etc. And the differences within those paths are colored, as well. Each has it's own flavor, a way of worship that is Divine in nature. No one ray is better than the other because...

The colored rays all trace back to the "reality which refracts the one light that comes from beyond." I don't necessarily think it matters what name one gives to the Divine. We all experience Goddess (God, Creator, Divine, etc.) in a way that is different...but the same. I used to dislike that phrase, "different but same." But it is true here. We worship. We offer time, talents and treasures. Some of us pray. Some meditate. Some use the mind to find peace. Some use the heart. Some experience their faith loudly. Some, quietly. But all in all, we all seek the same: an experience with the Divine that brings health to our bodies and comfort to our souls.

And "even those of us who share the same pathway are not standing at the same point on the road." How true. Many look down their noses at those who they feel are not as enlightened. Within our same paths, there is elitism which quelches the desire of the follower. What a shame, truly.

When did we become a faith of destruction and not rebuilding and replanting? What happened along the way that turned our hearts to stone when it comes to others? Being accepting of another's personal journey is part of being secure in our own! And being secure in our own faith doesn't mean we try to convert all we see to our way of faith! It's not about how many people you convert to your path. It's about loving everyone with whom you come in contact on your path and your journey.

Maybe it's time we all put down the hatchets and turned our swords into plowshares. Maybe it's time to learn to love and accept and not beat down and degrade. Maybe it's time to be people of faith; faith that loves all humankind, seeks to respect Mother Earth and be creators rather than takers of Her bounty, offers care to the sick and in despair.

That is what faith is about: reaching out. We ought to try it sometime. And great thanks to the rabbi who challenges me with each word he says.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

Presidential Politics

This is the face of the man who wants to continue to see your children killed in Iraq.

This is the man, the one with his sleeves rolled up, who wants to bring our children, mothers and fathers home from an unjust war.

The choice seems so obvious. But some won't get it. They'll hang on to the Republican party, party of hypocrisy, for all they're worth. Somehow the reality of what has happened to our beloved country is lost on them. They are oblivious, preferring to live by what they are told rather than see for themselves.

So many of my friends, gay and straight alike, lean towards the Republican party and nominee because they're so afraid of seeming "liberal" in their politics, theology and perceived lifestyle. It's an exercise in futility; going around and around and getting nowhere. Rats on a wheel. Follow the leader. Lemmings.

Now, I'm not saying that the Democrats have a grip on the market. Democrats (label them Liberals) can get smug and annoying with their "we are the world" stuff. Liberals have a broad spectrum of followers, just as the Conservatives do. You'll find everyone from tree huggers to lumberjacks. But, for the most part, from my observation, Liberals tend to be realists.

Is there room for others in this two-party system we've created? You bet. I'm listening. But I don't hear anything that hasn't been said before. No creativity. Same stuff, different day. If you're going to create a new party, or be a nominee from one, give me a good reason why I should care. Because unless you bring something spectacular to the table of discussion, all you're doing is trying to be a spoiler in the game. Nobody wins.

I'm doing my best to listen to all the speeches. I'm plastered to the nominees' websites, reading the political blogs, watching the pundits, etc. From Sen. McCain I hear jokes about bombing Iran. I hear him contradict himself over and over. Frankly, it scares me. From Sen. Obama, I hear a man with a vision of what can be again if we dream and work together.

And I hear the mainstream media picking their darlings and not reporting anymore. The days of Edward R. Murrow and Walter Cronkite are gone. Picking sides and slanting stories has become the way of the "journalist." Why can't we just go back to reporting the news instead of telling us what to think about it. It's an insult to intelligent people.

And in the end, is it really about Republican and Democrat, Conservative and Liberal, etc. or is it really about whether we put our collective heads in the sand and pretend we weren't taken for a horror ride by the current administration? I want on a ride towards freedom, civil rights, and reclaiming a place of honor in the World. I want on a ride that looks toward the future with bright ideas and expressions of peace. I want on the Peace Train! And, from my vantage point, it looks like Sen. Obama is going my way.

Monday, July 07, 2008

Let's Talk About Money...

I'm Becoming More Aware of My Feelings About Money. . .
Many people protest when we explain to them the power of telling the story of their finances as they want it to be rather than as it is, because they believe that they should be factual about what is happening. But if you continue to look at lackful what-is and speak of what-is, you will not find the improvement that you desire. If you want to effect substantial change in your life experience, you must think thoughts that feel different as you think them.

Hello again, Gentle Readers...

This was today's quote from Abraham-Hicks. I get their daily quotes and enjoy them immensely. I hope you'll check out their website.

I've been concerned about money lately. And yesterday, at the church service we attended, they were talking about choosing to view the world from the "shall be" and not the "is now." The pastor was speaking of free will. Now, as one who has been a hard-core fundamentalist in the past, we were taught that free will was one thing and one thing only: Our choice of whether we believe that Jesus was the Messiah...or not. We choose wrong and we get the hell-fire and damnation.

You know, I have problems with that free will. I have a hard time picturing God (or Goddess - you choose your diety) as an angry God who will simply throw you to the fire if you won't do as he says. But this pastor spoke of a different kind of free will: the free will to see beyond the now and embrace the future as it should be. No, I'm not talking of the whole "believe it and receive it" type of prosperity teaching. I am speaking of the free will to look at a situation, such as a financial one, and speak the positive into the world. For example, I may see that my dollars won't go as far as I would like. The electric bill is ridiculous. I can choose to be negative and gripe about the cost of it. Or I can choose (free will) to be positive and be grateful that I have heating, cooling and a way to cook my meals. It is the free will of the grateful spirit that brings positive results.

If we subscribe to the idea that all is energy, we now have the free will to speak positive into that energy. Okay, I know it sounds a bit "out there." But if our words and actions affect what we see and get in our lives, why not choose the way of free will? Choose to take up the positive instead of speaking the negative.

The pastor quoted a line in a musical. And, of course, I don't remember it fully. (That 50 year old memory glitch thingy!). But the gist of it was that it isn't the decision that is bad. It may be mistaken; a decision we can learn from in the future. So what? We take this moment and move forward to the next with wisdom.

So I encourage you this day to use your free will. Speak the positive. Be grateful for everything. And then watch the Universe operate on your behalf! Goddess bless!

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Things that make you go, "Hmmm?"

GW Bush, 12/18/2000

When in the Course of human events it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature's God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
Jesus General, a satirical blogger, has put the entirety of this on his most recent blog. It's well worth the read if it's been awhile. How quickly we forget our past and how, because of this president, we are doomed to repeat it. In that time, another George was asserting his dictatorship. Now we have this one.
Oh that we would rise up in disgust against the things this George has done to our beloved Country! He has caused us to be inhumane to other people. He has taken upon himself the whole of the Law controlling the Judiciary to suit his evil desires. He has taken away the rights of us, the citizens, through the Patriot Act and the repeal of Habeus Corpus. He has hamstrung the Congress and forced them through veto and executive privilege to support his desires. He has imprisoned, without due process, anyone who has looked at him the wrong way. Why do you think Gitmo is at capacity? He has used prison ships and other countries to hide prisons of "war." He is an evil man with an evil dream. Even though there are only a few months left in his "dictatorship" there is much more damage he can do to us and to the world.
Those who are called to prayer must pray. Those who are called to action must act. Those who are called to govern must stand against his tyranny. All of us are called to vote. It is our civic responsibility and privilege - and we must take it seriously. Let us not allow the presidency of our country be hijacked again by a despot.

Friday, July 04, 2008

Independence Day

My dear friends...

On this 4th of July holiday, I feel compelled to write on independence. More than 200 years ago, some very wise individuals came together to create a country. They took their ideals and put pen to paper. Those documents still govern us today. My question is whether the spirit of those ideals still remains? In my humble opinion, I think not. Here is why:

First, all people do not have the privilege of all of the rights guaranteed to our citizens. All minorities still suffer under prejudice and hatred. Gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgendered Americans remain without any civil rights or legal recourse. This should not be. The widest interpretation of those words given at the inception of our country should be accepted to understand that ALL people are created equal, and as such should be afforded all rights and liberties under our system of laws.

Second, we were given by these founders a tri-fold system of governance so that not one single part would gain control and create dictatorship and infringe on the rights of the individual. We suffer horribly under our present administration's dismissal of this concept. We have an appointed leader (not one supported by the vote of the people), who has taken to himself complete control including the decimation of civil liberties. This has been accomplished through government secrecy and violation of individuals by obtaining their bank records, phone records, and anything else the administration wants. This is done without regard to the law. And it continues to be done without the oversight of an emasculated Congress.

Third, our government was meant to provide representation for the public's taxation. We were to live within our means as a country. Thanks to the current war of aggression against the sovereign country of Iraq and massive spending by this administration, we as a country are in deep, deep debt. Much of this money is being borrowed through foreign countries, making us dependent upon their mercy financially, commercially, and politically. As individuals, you and I must live within the confines of our paycheck. We cannot simply give ourselves a raise. We cannot spend on a whim knowing our rent is due. We must be frugal. And with our economy as it currently stands, our status in life is certainly not improving. Yet...our government spends without concern for its citizens and their limited ability to pay taxes. What will be the outcome of this frivolity?

You want to know the state of this Union? It is easily found in the media reports from those who are not afraid of this administration and who will not be manhandled by a corrupt government. Unless something changes, and quickly, our beloved country may not be around much longer. We have become weak by spreading our defenses way too thin all around the world where they cannot defend us at home. We have become weak by becoming the slave to other countries' finances and commerce. We have become weak by giving away those very precious rights and privileges given to us by our founding fathers. The Patriot Act, and its subsequent reaffirmations, has stripped us of our rights and privacy. Yet, we keep on living in our own dream, rose colored glasses intact, hoping things will improve.

Wake up! Wake up, my friends. Unless we do, we will see all of our rights denied us. No more freedom of/from religion. No more right to privacy. No more right to a free press. Kiss them all goodbye.

Let us not only PRAY for relief that Goddess may deliver us from ourselves, but let us act! Use your vote wisely, for you have seen what can happen when it is taken away and the Supreme Court appoints a leader. Let this 4th of July, this Independence Day, signal a renewal of purpose to save this great nation. And celebrate the great nation that was...and will be again!

(A special note of thanks to all of our military men and women for their gallantry and sacrifice. You have the gratefulness of an entire country for your service. You also have my undying respect for all you give and are. You may say you're just doing your job. But, believe me, not all have the guts. And to my soldier, you are my hero.)

Goddess bless America...and the World.