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Our Earth Home: Seven Billion Strong

When we offer kindness to a friend or a stranger, when we teach children how to care for the environment, when we seek solutions to problems, when we discover better ways of responding, when we eat healthy foods, when we plant trees in urban areas, and when we act with awareness and compassion, we bring beauty to the world.

2017-07-24T07:49:23+00:00 June 5th, 2017|Categories: Current Events, Daily Living|Tags: , , , |6 Comments

Peaceful Earth Warriors: Our Spiritual Awakening is Here, Now

We plant seeds of universal accord when we remember that we are here, as guests, for only a brief while. What makes us truly happy is never that which destroys. Rather, it is the connection to our Source and to our hearts that nourishes a deep, abiding love for humanity, for wildlife, for nature, and for our planet.

2017-07-24T09:55:47+00:00 February 7th, 2017|Categories: Current Events, Daily Living, Spirituality|Tags: , , , |6 Comments

Seeking Solace

Our hearts seek comfort from things of beauty. We find solace in metaphors, stories, prayers, and songs. We gain strength from those creative souls who remind us, again and again, why we are here. They show us that we can do this hard thing: We can get up each day, do our work in this world, and stay awake to both our sorrow and our joy.

Love is Stronger than Hate

Our heart will let us know what is being asked of us. Maybe at its source our anger is actually fear: fear that our loved ones are at risk, fear that we are not enough, fear that we are powerless, or fear that we cannot solve our current problems. Fear wears many masks. Mindfulness practices may also reveal the deep love or sadness hidden beneath our anger.

2017-07-24T10:09:10+00:00 August 8th, 2016|Categories: Current Events, Daily Living|Tags: , , |6 Comments

Doing Good in the World: High School Graduate Emil Risk

Make your corner of the world a little happier, and, no matter where you end up in life, you’ll have done better than well—you’ll have done good. Don’t worry about building a monument to yourself and your accomplishments, it’ll be built anyway; first and foremost, give joy to the people around you, love deeply, be honest, be upright, be worthy of admiration, devote yourself to being a force of good in a world that all too often feels indifferent to the very concept of goodness. Minor Myers Jr. said it best; “Go out into the world and do well. More importantly, go out into the world and do good.”

2017-07-21T13:43:28+00:00 June 17th, 2015|Categories: Current Events, Daily Living|Tags: , |1 Comment

Strengthening Our Communities:  In Love

Our cultural, race, religious, gender, and ethnic differences are not the enemies. The real enemies are: ignorance, greed, hate, fear, and prejudice. Alice Walker says, “I think we have to own the fears that we have of each other, and then, in some practical way, some daily way, figure out how to see people differently than the way we were brought up to.”

2017-07-21T13:44:59+00:00 December 2nd, 2014|Categories: Current Events, Daily Living, Spirituality|Tags: , , |4 Comments

Overcoming Obstacles: Meet Johnna and Tay!

Married in June, Johnna and Tay Tidwell are young newlyweds—though their wedding didn’t happen exactly the way they envisioned. When they became engaged, their original plan was to wed in Canada, where same-sex marriages are legal. The wedding plans changed when an Indiana federal judge struck down the ban on same-sex marriages on June 25, 2014. Johnna and Tay married the next day at the clerk's office, shortly before a judicial stay halted any further marriage licenses for same-sex couples in Indiana

2017-07-21T13:45:13+00:00 July 28th, 2014|Categories: Current Events|Tags: , , |Comments Off on Overcoming Obstacles: Meet Johnna and Tay!

Waves of Great Change Are Always Moving Us Toward Love

That insight hit me as I was standing near friends and the House voted to delete one sentence banning civil unions from the proposed amendment. It was an important partial victory for those in attendance. The next thing that happened surprised me. A close friend began sobbing, a body-racking, heart-felt release welling up and pouring out from a place deep within. It was humbling to witness her vulnerability and raw, uncensored human emotion. It was as though she had been holding her breath, sealed off tight in a protected vault somewhere, and someone had finally told her it was safe to breathe.

2017-07-21T13:45:32+00:00 January 30th, 2014|Categories: Current Events, Daily Living|Tags: , , |14 Comments

A Different Holiday Idea Worth Exploring

While honoring and celebrating the birth of Jesus, some people also thoughtfully reflect upon the message of a man whose life was taken because he spoke out publically for those who were suffering. His message remains one of love. For others, the Solstice celebrations, Hanukkah traditions, and arrival of a New Year bring enormous gratitude for all the gifts received throughout the year, as well as thoughtful decisions on how to be of service to those who are less fortunate.

We All Have to Eat: A Thanks Giving Story

When you strip away all the nonsense of political affiliations, religion, money, skin color, etcetera, we are all humans. Just human beings with personal struggles trying to find our way in a world full of poisons flying at us from all fronts. So who am I to discriminate? I hope to never forget where I came from. My mission became free organic food for anyone who wants it. We feel grateful and so fortunate to be able to help improve the health of people in our community. We grow enough for everyone.

Moving Beyond “Us vs. Them”

How do we raise issues of injustice and prejudice, while remaining respectful and loving toward those who are of a different race, class, ethnicity, religion, or sexual orientation? How do we live so that at the end of the day, we feel good in our hearts about our actions? Are we brave enough to stand by those who are treated unfairly, when it is not easy to do so?

Why Not a Woman Pope?

If a woman, of any race, feels called to follow a life of God, then maybe she will be the next Pope, Buddha, Prophet, or Messiah . . . as she lovingly tends to all in her care and gently nurtures Mother Earth. Arundhati Roy, author of The God of Small Things, says, "Another world is not only possible, she is on her way! On a quiet day, if you listen carefully, you can hear her breathing."

Models for Living a Life of Courage

"Who are your role models? Whose life do you admire? Who reminds you to stay strong when you feel discouraged or feel like giving up? Who models the values and life choices that inspire you to be your absolute best self? Who helps you have the courage to voice your deepest desires and heartfelt dreams?"

Love Letters to Indiana’s LGBTQ Youth

Wouldn't it be wonderful if we sent an outpouring of love to our LGBTQ youth? What if each one of us took five minutes to write a note to the youth at IYG to let them know how much they are loved? And if so moved, we could also include a check to show our care and support. Can you imagine how amazing it would feel opening all those letters and knowing that your community loved you—more than you knew? Perhaps one such small act will save a life at risk.

Toward Peace & Healing

Perhaps in 2013 we can find ways to bring peace into our lives and create more peace in the larger world community. To do so, we might have to examine our emotional triggers. We may have to understand the conflict and anger within ourselves. We might need to listen to the suffering we have caused others. We may have to share our own sources of suffering. “Practicing nonviolence is first of all to become nonviolence. … This applies to problems of the family as well as to problems of society.”

2017-07-21T13:51:00+00:00 November 11th, 2012|Categories: Current Events, Daily Living|Tags: , , , , , , |0 Comments

A New Political Conversation

At a recent event, Jill Bolte Taylor (author, Stroke of Insight), Sandy Sasso (Rabbi), and Carrie Newcomer (folk singer), shared their stories. They joined the stage in an effort to build community and embark on a public discourse regarding the human spirit. They asked, “What do we want our world to be?” and “How do we love the stranger, not just our neighbor?” and “If not now, when?” They spoke of embracing cultural, religious, political, gender, ethnic, and racial differences. How do we do so? We can start by telling our stories. We can listen to the stories of others. We can recognize the collective whole.

We Can Love Better – Lessons from Chick-fil-A

If we look back to the work of Jesus, in his time, women were the victims of disparate and cruel treatment. Individuals who were poor and individuals who suffered illnesses fared no better in those social structures. Jesus stood up for those who were oppressed. During the Civil Rights Movement of the 1950’s and 1960’s, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. spoke out for the freedom (and legal rights) of all people. Gandhi likewise spoke for the imperative right to equality for all who were considered outcasts. These men risked their lives on behalf of others . . . in service to justice and fairness. God does not discriminate is the message they carried. God is love.

Love Will See Us Through

If we want to see peace, then we have to learn inner peace. If we want to see love, then we have to give it. If we are in a position of influence (musicians, singers, actors, political leaders, parents, religious leaders, teachers), then we have to show our youth that we are practicing what we preach: that drinking, drugs, self-interest, greed, exploitation, hate, and violence are never the answer to our problems. We must live out our spirituality by actively demonstrating an all-inclusive love, expansion of heart and soul, care of the earth and all her creatures, and world peace: that’s the message.

Stepping into our Calling – Ordination of Maria Thornton McClain

Home > Blog Index > Stepping into our Calling – Ordination of Maria Thornton McClain “The changes in our life must come from the impossibility to live otherwise than according to the demands of our conscience.” -Leo Tolstoy  I’ve been thinking about the ordination of the former nun, Maria Thornton McClain. When we feel called in [...]

2017-07-21T14:26:02+00:00 April 19th, 2012|Categories: Current Events, Daily Living, Spirituality|6 Comments

Waging Peace

Home > Blog Index > Waging Peace "If we are to reach real peace in the world, we shall have to begin with the children." -- Mohandas Gandhi “Many think peace in the world is impossible. Many think inner peace cannot be attained. It’s the one who doesn’t know it can’t be done who [...]

2017-07-21T14:36:18+00:00 November 14th, 2011|Categories: Current Events, Daily Living|8 Comments

The Highest Love

Home > Blog Index > The Highest Love “Justice at its best is love correcting everything that stands against love.” --Martin Luther King, Jr. "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." --Martin Luther King, Jr. I recall an image from the civil rights movement of an angry [...]

2017-07-21T14:40:55+00:00 May 29th, 2011|Categories: Current Events, Spirituality|3 Comments

Compassion

We are like leaves on a tree: different colors, different shapes, and different branches that extend in various directions. We have different religions and languages. But we are all connected. We share the same planet. We share the same sky, the same need for food and water, and the same need for love and compassion.

2017-07-24T10:21:53+00:00 February 28th, 2011|Categories: Current Events, Spirituality|Tags: , |0 Comments