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Archive for November, 2016

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This Thanksgiving when we meet with our families and friends, no doubt the conversation will turn to politics and the latest election. There will likely be differences of opinion and we will each be met with a choice . . .

to walk the High Road or the Low Road.

When we choose the Low Road, everyone always loses.

When we choose the High Road, the Universe always provides.

Let’s be an example of what we want for our children and for all future generations.

Seek to understand before wanting to be understood.

I send you my loving commitment to understand you and perhaps you, too, will then choose to understand me.


Let’s remember. . .
“Fighting for peace” is an oxymoron

“Standing for peace” is enlightenment.

Martha Signature - first name only

Happy Thanksgiving

2016

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Here’s Why We Grieve Today

By John Paylovitz

November 9, 2016

“I don’t think you understand us right now.

I think you think this is about politics.

I think you believe this is all just sour grapes; the crocodile tears of the losing locker room with the scoreboard going against us at the buzzer.

I can only tell you that you’re wrong. This is not about losing an election. This isn’t about not winning a contest. This is about two very different ways of seeing the world.

Hillary supporters believe in a diverse America; one where religion or skin color or sexual orientation or place of birth aren’t liabilities or deficiencies or moral defects. Her campaign was one of inclusion and connection and inter-dependency. It was about building bridges and breaking ceilings. It was about going high.

Trump supporters believe in a very selective America; one that is largely white and straight and Christian, and the voting verified this. Donald Trump has never made any assertions otherwise. He ran a campaign of fear and exclusion and isolation-and that’s the vision of the world those who voted for him have endorsed.

They have aligned with the wall-builder and the professed p*ssy-grabber, and they have co-signed his body of work, regardless of the reasons they give for their vote:

Every horrible thing Donald Trump ever said about women or Muslims or people of color has now been validated.

Every profanity-laced press conference and every call to bully protestors and every ignorant diatribe has been endorsed.
Every piece of anti-LGBTQ legislation Mike Pence has championed has been signed-off on.

Half of our country has declared these things acceptable, noble, American.

This is the disconnect and the source of our grief today. It isn’t a political defeat that we’re lamenting, it’s a defeat for Humanity.

We’re not angry that our candidate lost.

We’re angry because our candidate’s losing means this country will be less safe, less kind, and less available to a huge segment of its population, and that’s just the truth.

Those who have always felt vulnerable are now left more so. Those whose voices have been silenced will be further quieted. Those who always felt marginalized will be pushed further to the periphery. Those who feared they were seen as inferior now have confirmation in actual percentages.

Those things have essentially been campaign promises of Donald Trump, and so many of our fellow citizens have said this is what they want too.

This has never been about politics.
This is not about one candidate over the other.

It’s not about one’s ideas over another’s.
It is not blue vs. red.
It’s not her emails vs. his bad language.
It’s not her dishonesty vs. his indecency.

It’s about overt racism and hostility toward minorities.
It’s about religion being weaponized.
It’s about crassness and vulgarity and disregard for women.
It’s about a barricaded, militarized, bully nation.
It’s about an unapologetic, open-faced ugliness.

And it is not only that these things have been ratified by our nation that grieve us; all this hatred, fear, racism, bigotry, and intolerance-it’s knowing that these things have been amen-ed by our neighbors, our families, our friends, those we work with and worship alongside.

That is the most horrific thing of all. We now know how close this is.

It feels like living in enemy territory being here now, and there’s no way around that. We wake up today in a home we no longer recognize. We are grieving the loss of a place we used to love, but no longer do. This may be America today, but it is not the America we believe in or recognize or want.

This is not about a difference of political opinion, as that’s far too small to mourn over. It’s about a fundamental difference in how we view the worth of all people-not just those who look or talk or think or vote the way we do.

Grief always laments what might have been, the future we were robbed of, the tomorrow we won’t get to see, and that is what we walk through today.

As a nation we had an opportunity to affirm the beauty of our diversity this day, to choose ideas over sound-bytes, to let everyone know they had a place at the table, to be the beacon of goodness and decency we imagine that we are-and we said no.

The Scriptures say that weeping endures for a night, but joy comes in the morning. We can’t see that dawn coming any time soon.

And this is why we grieve.”

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The Worst of America

Written by Charles M. Blow, Op-Ed Columnist,

New York Times October 17, 2016

Donald Trump has virtually stopped trying to win this election by any conventional metric and is instead stacking logs of grievance on the funeral pyre with the great anticipation of setting it ablaze if current polls turn out to be predictive.

There is something calamitous in the air that surrounds the campaign, a hostile fatalism that bespeaks a man convinced the end is near and aiming his anger at all within reach.

As his path to victory grows narrower, his desperation grows more pronounced.

Last week a steady stream of women stepped forward to accuse Trump of some form of sexual assault, abuse or inappropriate behavior. Trump’s response has been marked by a stunning lack of grace and dignity, let alone contrition or empathy, a response much like the man himself.

Instead, he is doubling down on sexism.

On Thursday, Trump said of the People magazine reporter who accused him of forcibly kissing her: “Look at her. Look at her words. You tell me what you think. I don’t think so.”

He said on Friday of the woman accusing him of groping her on an airplane: “Believe me, she would not be my first choice – that I can tell you.”

He also said of Clinton, “When she walked in front of me, believe me, I wasn’t impressed.”

His response to these charges has been surprisingly – and perhaps, revealingly – callow. He has mocked, whined, chided, bemoaned and belittled. It’s as if the man is on a mission to demonstrate to voters the staggering magnitude of his social vulgarity and emotional ineptitude. He has dispensed with all semblances of wanting to appear presidential and embraced what seems to be most natural to him: acting like a pig.

Furthermore, everything is rigged against him, from the media to the election itself. He’s threatening to sue The New York Times. He says he and Clinton should take a drug test before the next debate.

These are the ravings of a lunatic.

Trump is back to carelessly shooting off his mouth and recklessly shooting himself in the foot.

It is sad, really, but for him I have no sympathy. He has spent this entire election attacking anyone and everyone whom he felt it would be politically advantageous to attack. Trump, now that you’re under attack, you want to cry woe-is-me and have people commiserate.

Slim chance, big guy.

The coarseness of your character has been put on full display, and now the electorate has come to cash the check you wrote.

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“This is love: to fly toward a secret sky, to cause a hundred veils to fall each moment.  First to let go of life. Finally, to take a step without feet.”

Rumi

“I knew this beautiful couple who always held hands. They were both so beautiful, serene and humble. Whenever you were in their presence, you could feel a burst of love coming your way. That’s how much love was flowing through them… They were my neighbors.

We have been living in the same building for more than 30 years. And ever since I was a little kid I felt there was something different about them. Their love felt so pure, powerful and honest. It felt like they had love not just for each other, but for all things and for all beings. They had so much love in their hearts to give, and I felt their love each time…

Wherever you are and whatever you do, be in love.

Rumi

Last year I ran into them while waiting for the elevator and I told them:

You are the most beautiful couple I have ever seen. I’ve been meaning to tell you this for so long. 

You are both so beautiful and serene… Just looking at you makes me feel so peaceful and happy…Thank you for being this way…’

They looked at me with their beautiful and peaceful eyes and they just smiled. That’s all they did. They didn’t say a single word, but it honestly felt as if they told me everything there was to say:

Love your life. Love yourself. Love all things. Love all beings…. Have a humble, pure and honest love for all things and all beings. That is the secret…

We spend so much of our time chasing all sorts of illusions in the hope that by having these things, we will eventually have it all – fame, happiness, recognition, love, success, approval, etc. And because we are so busy chasing these things, we fail to recognize that love is all that matters.

Life isn’t about grabbing onto things. Life is all about loving things. Life is all about loving who we are, where we are and what we have, without despising and rejecting the ‘little’ things, while idolizing the ‘big things.’

I have been living in the same building with those two beautiful beings for as long as I can remember. I don’t know who they were in the world, what they did for a living and whether they were ‘important’ according to the standards of our society or not. But what I do know is they knew how to love.

It happens all the time in heaven,
 And some day It will begin to happen
Again on earth –

That men and women who are married,
And men and men who are Lovers,

And women and women
Who give each other Light,
Often will get down on their knees
And while so tenderly
Holding their lover’s hand,
With tears in their eyes,
Will sincerely speak, saying,
‘My dear, How can I be more loving to you;
How can I be more kind?’

Hafiz of Persia

He passed away just a few weeks after I had that lovely interaction with them, leaving his wife to continue her journey on this earth alone for a little longer. And as I was reading the announcement about his death, I couldn’t help but think that one day we will all leave this world.

And when that happens, none of the things we stress and worry so much about will matter anymore. None of them.

So why wait until it’s too late to realize life is all about love? Why wait until it’s too late to realize life is full of beauty and the beauty you see all around you has always been in you, too?

Allow your eyes to see beauty – the beauty of you, and the beauty of all that is. And remember not to worry so much. Because in the end, none of us have very long on this Earth. Life is fleeting…. Make your life spectacular…”

Thank you to: Luminita D. Saviuc for this lovely contribution.

 

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