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Learning to See with your Heart and Feel with your Soul


Costanza

Jason Alexander

George Costanza of Seinfeld (Jason Alexander) had an epiphany in one episode where he brilliantly realized that everything in his life would be made right if he simply did the “opposite” of what his initial thoughts were.

Subsequently instead of answering “no” to someone’s question, he would answer in the affirmative; instead of deciding not to go somewhere, he would choose the opposite, and go.  And although that was merely a story line and fiction, it is conceptually thought-provoking and intriguing.

sandy-hook-cemetery_465

Sandy Hook Cemetery

In a few, critical aspects of our lives, George can be that role model for us.  In the most profound way, it applies to how we perceive our world.  Specifically, when we observe events, people and situations, when bad things occur, many times, our initial reaction and thoughts gravitate toward “why is the world so full of apathy, hatred and violence?”.

Case in point, the Sandy Hook Elementary School Tragedy, where an autistic young man with a personality disorder, used his mother’s unsecured firearms to take the lives of 20 children and 6 adults prior to ultimately ending his own.

In Truth, these conditions indeed exist, however, on the surface, not as the result of the Catholicpresence of emotions and actions, but rather, as the direct result of the absence of God and His spirit.  And so it is with many situations in life, i.e., domestic violence, divorce, abusive relationships, juvenile crime, civil unrest, bullying, etc.  Taking that unconventional “out of the box” approach, many of the scourges of life, society and culture can be considered the outcome of an absence rather than a presence of factors.

The invitation and presence of God in our lives manifests itself in the form of human beings with self-esteem and respect, humility, faith, love, positive attitude and sound family and friend support systems.

In reference to a previous post on this site, Seeing is really not believing, but rather, Believing causes us to See in an unique manner.  In many respects, we have it backwards from a cause and effect perspective.  We have effectively pushed God out of our schools, government and public places and then in the same thought sequence or breath, fail to comprehend why violence, hatred, crime and immorality are increasing at alarming rates in our society.  It is as if we have become blinded by the negative to such a degree we have voided any room in our minds to hold the positive, the religious, the just and the spiritual.

We have likewise traded worshiping God for the false gods of entertainment, flesh, technology, science and mind-altering substances.  Collectively, these addictions consume our being, slowly forcing out the one true and real God.  And we have no one to blame but ourselves.

I’ve always considered myself to be a sincere, positive and genuine person, so it is easy for me to make that cognitive and theological leap toward believing in God and that we truly see with our hearts and feel with our souls.  Our heart and soul is our GPS guidance and navigation system to life and living, and people that have reached and accepted that conclusion are the happiest and most peaceful and content people I have ever met or interacted with during my lifetime.

In closing this thought, our challenge is to humbly acknowledge that our lives are meaningless without God in them, to guide, console, spiritually nurture, learn, grow as human beings and most importantly, Love.  Love is the ultimate energy force in the universe.  Nothing less will be acceptable if we are to be successful in slowing down and eventually reversing the alarming, dangerous and devastating trends in our existence.

“We live by faith, not by sight.” -2 Corinthians 5:7

God bless us all.  Be well.

Melting a Hardened Heart begins with Forgiveness


Heart_in_Hand_ValuesOur lives abound with the callings of Love as we welcome newborn infants into the world; join together to introduce a newly married couple to our community; share our food, goodwill and financial resources with others in times of need…  Yet our lives likewise experience darkness and evil as we introduce hate into the world via killing; discrimination, abandonment and apathy.

What are we to learn and take away from this reality?  I contend that evil unfortunately serves an important and unique purpose and role in our lives as a constant reminder of the need for good, for positive energy toward others and to enhance our limited awareness of the stark reality of what our lives are like, absent God and Faith.

As peace is contrasted by violence and light unto darkness, the lives we lead must equally reflect that balance.  And that balance is necessary as a result of our existence being inextricably melded with sin.  I will be the first to offer that I am not a perfect human being, I am a sinner as are we all.  Yet, that knowledge does not only prevent me from striving on a daily basis to offset that curse with positive thoughts, but in fact, motivates me to transform my positive thoughts into actions and behaviors of goodwill toward others.

lotus_hi_resAs atoms comprise molecules and molecules form matter, from the infinitely tiny, progressively to large, significant and impactful; each positive thought, behavior and action, from one person to the next, synergistically combine to form a peaceful, calming and equally positive environment for all of us to share and enjoy.

Yet, this eloquent soliloquy cannot be collectively “heard” by others without consistent energy being applied by many in unison.  Evil acts, events and momentum have increasingly been witnessed in our world in the past century; blindingly in the past week.  For many, the unfortunate fate and future for our world, has already been accepted as inevitable and the will, conviction and resiliency to continue toward peace and Light has been all but squelched into complacency, desensitizing many and creating a numbness of spirit.

I proclaim to you that Now is the time, to recommit to the Truth, to recognize, realize and envision the positive outcome we still hold dear in our hearts, of a world where peace is the norm, where people willingly and regularly extend a helping hand to their neighbors and likewise to those they do not know.

“Evil is as real as the air we breathe and unfortunately, as necessary to remind us of our singular purpose and destiny in life.”

ForgivenessWe are all children of God whether or not we care to admit and accept it.  And as sure as the sun rises each day, we will be held to account for our lives once that light ceases to permeate our physical being.  It is never too late to melt a hardened heart, yet it will not materialize without Love and Compassion, and most importantly, Forgiveness.

So let us each find the courage and energy to identify those areas within our lives where we desperately need to forgive someone of a wronged past, perhaps a hurtful word or failure to support or console us in our time of need.  Let us recognize the root of forgiveness is to “give” to others of ourselves, to rid our souls of the blackness that is in truth, an absence of Light, and to replace that dark void with warm feelings of camaraderie, goodwill, peace and Love.

Amazingly, we will find a new wealth that is defined and valued by the warmth it creates and the goodness it resonates.  Let us reach heal-the-world-posterout now to mend those broken fences, comfort those that have hurt us or that we have hurt, lift up our hearts to that higher vibration and energy known as Love.

Genuine Peace of the world is within our reach; if indeed, we only in fact, reach out for it.  I call it Spiritual Maturity and our world desperately needs it now.

Please, listen and meditate on the lyrics of this Angelic Song emblazoned by the late Great Ray Charles…  and then; transform those positive and heartfelt emotions into visible actions and an enduring behavior of goodwill, camaraderie, and Love toward others.

The Power of Forgiveness is REAL; the Truth of Love is each of our responsibilities.   When we eliminate the darkness of sin that is characterized by hate and apathy, only Love remains…  Be well.

The Blurring of America – Technology Bends Reality


If someone were to ask you what is the temperature outside today, you’d likely look for the answer on your radio, television, computer, smartphone or the thermometer hanging outside your kitchen window.  And chances are that most, if not all of these sources would be identical or very close to each other.

When you really think about it, however, each of these historically referenced sources rely on technology or something made by humans to provide information; and answers.  The fact is, that we (humans) create or fabricate literally everything in our world that we consider ‘real’.

Using our core senses (see, hear, smell, touch and taste), we fabricate the experience of the world and environment around us.  Our mind interprets and transforms the information from our physical senses into meaningful and understandable thoughts we then use to generate behavior and reaction to stimuli.

How do we truly ‘know’, however, whether the information we have come to be very, very dependent upon, is in reality, accurate?  The truth of the matter is that we do not know, yet we accept the information as being correct.  And herein, lies the foundation of the ‘blurring’ down of our society.

Every aspect of our lives is impacted, whether it be our jobs, our family, our relationships and profoundly… our future.

When you go to the theater today or play a movie from a DVD, you witness modern technology in all its grandeur, from Avalon, Inception and the Avengers, to E.T., Star Wars and Independence Day.  Contemporary advancements in 3D technology make each experience all the more ‘real’.

And it doesn’t end there; programs like Photoshop and Magix provide the capability to warp or bend reality into something out of the depths of our imagination and make it appear ‘real’.   Teen Vogue and Seventeen Magazines were recently in the news addressing accusations from models to stop ‘photo-shopping’ images of subjects in their magazine to make them slimmer, visually more appealing and well, near flawless.  Is this reality?

Click Me!

Another example of the blurring of America is the current political climate amidst the competition for the next President of the United States that will be elected in less than four months.  Not only is reality being challenged by adverse television advertising by the candidates, but also by the recent hoopla over the digital ‘Birth Certificate’ of our current president.

And  if that isn’t enough to cause you to bang your head repeatedly against the wall, then the major television networks (ABC, CBS, NBC, CNN) have provided blurring nirvana as a result of the spin they place on political stories of the candidates as well as what stories (they call it News) they decide to cover and what they choose to avoid or overlook in support of their desired political preference.

Artificial Intelligence has become the most blatant and best example of an oxymoron since Jumbo Shrimp.  Today’s world is fast becoming an alternate reality via video games, android robots, animated movies, diet food and artificial leather.  Our lives now better resemble a fiction novel than true living.

You might ask, what is the purpose of life, then?  More importantly, what is the value of life?   ‘We’ can now create new realities via cloning sheep and dogs, growing artificial human organs, generating or reproducing bacteria for study and producing entertainment that can effectively replace what used to be called ‘reality’.

Click Me!

There is one surefire approach to truth and reality in its empirical form and it exists inside each of us.  Call it your spirit, soul or conscience; it remains the one and only thing in this world that cannot be fabricated or artificially reproduced.   Accordingly, it is the one thing that each of us must cherish more than our physical life as it transcends us into eternity.

Following, the most visible and meaningful manifestation of our spirit or soul, certainly the one way we can best relate to eternity is Love.  Expressing it, experiencing it, sharing it, teaching it, living it, losing it and accepting it are the keys to maintaining a focus on what is real and what is not, along with what is important and what is not.

Rest assured, what is real is what is in your heart and your soul.  Technology is a cheap, insincere and temporary illusion.

Live well, Love well, Think well, Be well.

Is Reality Television the Scourge of America and the Family?


 

The buzz of Hollywood, the fatal attraction of entertainment, the mesmerizing capture of our attention by television and video.  It has lured us in, stimulated our senses, and in some cases actually entertained us.  But mostly, it has altered our sense of what is real and has blurred the line between reality, fantasy, fiction and entertainment.

Most disturbingly, for many individuals, it has largely REPLACED true reality as truth.  If you contrast most of what is available on television and in movies, you will find it does NOT reflect the reality of mainstream America nor the real lives of most Americans.  It is primarily “wishful thinking”.

The increasing stresses and pressures we all face as human beings, with our families, jobs, neighborhoods, schools and friends have collectively made it very attractive to seek outlets to relieve the stress, or make it completely go away, at least for an hour each week, as we watch these reality shows.

The “inconvenient truth” of this reality is that we watch an inordinate amount of television each day and week of our ‘lives’.  According to a U.S. Government, BLS (Bureau of Labor Statistics) study in June, 2012 (using 2011 data), the average person over age 15 spends 2.8 hours/day watching television.

Considering work, travel, sleep and miscellaneous daily activities associated with normal living, i.e., laundry, cleaning, cooking, prayer/spiritual health, administrative/financial, personal hygiene; I would offer that the average person realistically possesses at most, less than 6 hours of ‘free time’ every day.

Doing the math, then, 2.8 hours of watching television equates to roughly 47% of our discretionary time every day.

If we consciously choose to invest that amount of time every day for this single activity, it will consequently and realistically impact or alter our sense of reality, our ability to think, apply logic and ultimately influence how we make decisions.  Much like the age-old saying, “You are what you eat”, I propose that cognitively, “You are what you watch”.

The BIGGER question is what impact Reality Television has already had on the ‘Family’ as the core social unit for us as human beings?

 

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