Sunday, April 29, 2012

LOVE makes us brave
          Kony, the sadistic, Ugandan warlord, who has become famous because of the YouTube video about him, was challenged by the bravery of Sister Rachele Fassera. 

Kony raided a boarding school for girls and abducted 139 girls to use them as sexual slaves.  Sister Rachele Fassera, the deputy headmistress of the school, hiked through the Ugandan bush in search of them.  When she found them, she confronted the rebels and pleaded to have them release the children.  She even urged them to take her in place of the girls.  Moved by her courage and implacable love for the children, the rebels released 109 of the girls to her. 

Sister Fassera knew that she was risking her life without any assurance that the children would be let free.  But she could not stop herself because her love for the children was so great.  The propulsive might of divine LOVE moved her to act boldly and selflessly. 

Each one of us is inexorably linked to LOVE.  Whether we know it or not, act like it or not, the provable fact is that our intrinsic, spiritual essence is an instrument of LOVE’s beneficent purpose in the world. 

This understanding gives deeper purpose and spiritual power to our lives. 

Saved by “angels”

          He was eating alone in his tiny apartment, stooped by the heaviness of so many unresolved issues, bewildered by their complexity, and afraid. 

          Suddenly he could not swallow the bite of fish.  A piece of fish bone was choking him to death.  He felt impotent to get up to get a drink of water. 

He regretted dying without having been able to do more for those back home who depended on him. 

He said mentally to himself, “I may be dying, but I cannot be separated from infinite, divine LOVE.”  He also remembered Jesus Christ’s reference to the many “angels” protecting him, which Jesus declared when speaking to Pilate. 

He intuited that these same celestial, benevolent forces of LOVE were rescuing him.  Then the fish bone slid right on through.  Now he felt safe and comforted by loving, divine agencies (“angels”).

Instead of dying, he lived.  Feeling grateful and safe within LOVE’s sovereignty, he fell asleep. 

An hour later he woke up and his outlook on his troubles was changed.  He was convinced an army of compelling, intelligence influences was directing his life, and available to everyone. 

Friday, April 27, 2012

The immeasurable LIFE-force manifests us

The Greek Orthodox theologian, Philip Sherrard, has written that "Creation is nothing less than the manifestation of God's hidden Being."  We can add that to a spiritual, infinite outlook the wonders of LOVE’s ongoing creative process become increasingly tangible. 

Every life-form is evidence of the irrepressible, teeming, time-free, life-process of the uncontainable and preeminent ARTIST/DESIGNER/INTELLIGENCE.   

The illimitable richness, magnificence and vigor of existence are hidden from us by the filter of materiality.  A spiritual, mental lens reveals a majestic view of our incorporeal and immortal range of being. 

Our happiness, health, talents, love-relationships, and purposeful and rewarding engagements are also unstoppable manifestations of the boundless LOVE-PRINCIPLE. 

These enlightened concepts enhance our spiritual ken, which then propels us to be bold, inventive, wise and successful. 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

An ever-evolving and healing Church

Church: A network of caring participants engaged in a spiritual, propulsive, improvisatory “dance” with SOUL and with one another.  This dance expresses and communicates SOUL’s energizing, intelligent, loving and sanative rhythms. 

One may also think of it as a spiritual conversation.  This never-ending and exciting dialogue can unlock our mental traps, educate us with new concepts, sharpen our spiritual sensibility, broaden our sense of community, and motivate us to bring more Christly justice to our world.   

At the center is incomparable and preeminent LOVE-SPIRIT.  A SPIRIT-anchored community acts like an intellectual and spiritual womb of experimentation and innovation.  Then we are humbled and amazed by the successful accomplishments that come from this Christ-nurtured matrix. 

Alterative, life-expansive ideas do not come down from a top-down, ecclesiastical hierarchy, but flow out to everyone from the infinite SOURCE-INTELLIGENCE.  Ever-evolving inspiration and understanding impels us to challenge past assumptions and abandon our comfort-zones.  This keeps us alive and relevant.  We transcend the death that ensues from petrified, dogmatic, and ritualistic behavior.   

Organic, grass-roots and democratic inventiveness meets the needs of each community.  But it also generates educational and curative cross-currents among participants across the planet. 

In an ever-evolving and transformational church, individuals and teams know that they are free to synchronize to the propulsive, therapeutic rhythms of unbounded SOUL, and that their unique “life-dances” are encouraged and supported. 

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Healing mother-daughter conflicts

          Daughters will say, “I find mom’s comments to be condescending.  It’s like she does not see me as my own person, able to make my right decisions.”  Mothers say, “I never meant criticism, I was trying to be helpful.”

          Mothers protected and nudged their daughter’s during their growing up years, and it is easy for them to continue doing so when their daughters are adults.  If their daughters don’t listen mothers feel powerless to help them.  Then they push some more.  At other times, mothers’ insistence is veiling some other feeling, like “I miss you; I wish you would call me more often.”

          Daughters can be sensitive to it all and may regard their mothers’ persistent and uninvited advice as disrespectful and rude behavior.   Naturally, mothers want their adult daughters to still need them, and to respect them, and to be close, if not best, friends. 

          Because mothers often want their daughters to have better lives than they did, they may place on them too-high and confusing expectations.  Even when daughters have successful careers and marriages, mothers may, unconsciously, see them as able to do better, and/or, as extensions of themselves. 

          Effective mother-daughter healing-therapy can with each of them individually, and together.  When done right, such therapy provides a safe emotional setting where they can honestly reveal and learn how their behavior affects the other. 

          Individual prayer can be a tremendous healing force when we permit WISDOM-TRUTH to change us with new ideas and approaches.   The universal and preeminent LOVE-INTELLIGENCE transforms receptive thoughts/hearts.  It replaces hurts, insecurities, fears and doubts with honest, generous and enlightened affection.  MIND’s intelligent and loving influences help us accept viewpoints beyond our own, and this makes us more sensitive to others’ needs and wiser in our responses. 

          Here are some proven solutions for relationship conflicts:

LOVE-WISDOM guides mothers and daughters to establish and accept each others’ boundaries.  Uninvited advice yields to an acceptance and appreciation of each others’ differences.  No hurt feelings will ensue when we learn to ask first: “Is there something I can help you with?” or “Would you like to talk about something that is troubling you?”  

It is also essential for healthy relationships for the one who is used to asserting control to ask the other for help.  Humility helps us do this.  By understanding that WISDOM-LOVE works through all of us, we can welcome each others’ help.

LOVE-TRUTH encourages us to be honest, even vulnerable, about our feelings, but without blaming the other.  For example, without anger or putting blame on the other, one can say: “I feel lonely;” or “I feel hurt;” or “I want to please you, but am feeling I cannot measure up to earn your approval;” or “I may be wrong about this, but I don’t feel respected for my own opinions and ways of doing things.”

Ever-expanding LIFE-SOUL can liberate from past habit-traps.  It can clean and change the mental filters through which we interpret and judge each other.  It teaches us how to encourage, help and celebrate each others’ evolving personalities and lives.  Then our relationships become SPIRIT-energized, ever-expansive LIFE-journeys which help us learn and adapt to new concepts, and these expand and enrich our relationships. 

Monday, April 23, 2012

Laughing at our Dilbert-type dumbness

Real-life Dilbert-type managers. These were recently voted the top ten quotes in corporate America:

"As of tomorrow, employees will only be able to access the building using individual security cards. Pictures will be taken next Wednesday, and employees will receive their cards in two weeks."

"What I need is an exact list of specific unknown problems we might encounter."

"E-mail is not to be used to pass on information or data.  It should be used only for company business. 

"This project is so important we can't let things that are more important interfere with it."

"Doing it right is no excuse for not meeting the schedule."

"No one will believe you solved this problem in one day ! We've been working on it for months. Now go act busy for a few weeks and I'll let you know when it's time to tell them."

Quote from the Boss: "Teamwork is a lot of people doing what I say."

"My sister passed away and her funeral was scheduled for Monday. When I told my Boss, he said she died on purpose so that I would have to miss work on the busiest day of the year. He then asked if we could change her burial to Friday. He said,'That would be better for me.' "

"We know that communication is a problem, but the company is not going to discuss it with the employees."

Are people around you acting like apes?

Are you witnessing selfish behavior whereby you give generously, but others do not reciprocate?  Have you found that you are not given credit for your good ideas, maybe even criticized or ignored, but that your ideas are stolen by peers and bosses?  Do you observe that some do not respond in a timely manner to your queries and comments while you do?  Have you dealt with people who ooze charm in public, but behave like venomous serpents in private?  How about tribalism  -- the us vs. them?  And do you know people who are driven to sabotage others' work?  Finally, do you witness strong resistance to positive change?

In his new book, "Games Primates Play," Dario Maestripieri of the University of Chicago (who is both a professor and a primatologist) describes, in detail, how much of human behavior apes primates in good and bad ways.  But he also says that visibility and transparency are contributing factors toward ameliorating bad behavior and accentuating the good. 

While human behavior may at times be quite animalistic, we also have proven ourselves to be capable of amazing goodness.  Everyday in our world there are billions engaged in precious acts of kindness, generosity, caring, and selflessness. 

Although human evolution and education have improved our behavior, there is something more to our capacity to live rightly.  It is this: at the core of our being we are divinely-engineered beings with a limitless capacity for doing good. 

INTELLIGENCE/LOVE is the unbounded source of a non-physical universe filled with immortal, spiritual beings.  Ever-creative MIND/SOUL generates our spiritual make-up, which possesses an inexhaustible arsenal of holy qualities and abilities. 

Divine awareness defeats bad primate behavior with SOUL-enabled ethical, intelligent and caring responses.  When we encounter bad, primate-like behavior we do not need to respond likewise.  Instead, we can choose to assert our intelligent and wise spiritual reasoning and attributes.  Unethical, immoral, selfish and malicious behavior proves itself powerless before our MIND-sanctioned, spiritual power. 

SOUL/MIND capacitates us to think intelligently and act effectively. 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

We are SOUL-anointed

      Paul wrote, “The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God” and “… if children, then heirs, heirs of God, and joint heirs with Christ …” 

      It is spiritual sense – God’s inner voice within – that testifies to our divine heritage and our oneness with FATHER-MOTHER-LOVE.  Illimitable LOVE is bearing witness to our spiritual purity, perfection and wholeness.  M. B. Eddy states that since we are expressions of SPIRIT-LOVE, we are immortal, harmonious and eternal. 

      We coexist with SOUL because we are its ideas, its immaculate representations.  As such, we have freedom from material conditions and dominion over all dilemmas.  Material difficulties, which are just mental deflections and inversions of spiritual facts, are erased from our experience by spiritual cognition. 

      As MOTHER-INTELLIGENCE is our determiner and the multiplier of creativity, health and wellness, we reflect its prolific, insightful and corrective capacities.  We are linked by spiritual sensibility to WISDOM’s inexhaustible creativity and efficacious healing action.  MIND’s spiritual laws outlaw material bondage – they elide sin, suffering and lack.  We are, ultimately, laws of GOOD.  We are MOTHER-INTELLIGENCE’s affirmations of health, abundance and goodness.

      All-determining LOVE is expressing in us spiritual freedom, completeness, wholeness and might.  Our genuine, matter-transcending lives are, at this instant, expanding within the infinity and permanence of SOUL’s goodness. 
MIND-INTELLIGENCE has infinite answers to the most befuddling and complex human problems.  To discern MOTHER-INTELLIGENCE's many innovative and effective answers we must abandon our ingrained biases and mental traps, be open to new insights, and flexible with experimentation.

Illegal drug trafficking, alcohol-related violence and accidents, and prescription drug dependency are complex social problems which require multiple creative solutions.  MIND's solutions can ameliorate the destructive, personal and social effects of imprisoning a half a million drug users; the devastating, drug-trafficking-related violence in Mexico and Central America; the thousands of yearly deaths and broken homes caused by drunkenness; and the lives damaged by the overuse of prescription drugs. 

Here are some fresh, effective solutions reported by experts such as Kleiman, Caulkins, and Hawken (Dr. Kleiman is professor of public policy at the UCLA Luskin School of Public Affairs. Dr. Caulkins is Stever Professor of Operations Research and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University. Dr. Hawken is associate professor of public policy at Pepperdine University. They are co-authors of "Drugs and Drug Policy: What Everyone Needs to Know." ):

1. Raising the federal alcohol tax. It lowers drinking among most teenagers.

2. Persistently educating the public about the dangers and misuse of prescription and over-the-counter drugs.

3. The 24/7 Sobriety program in South Dakota which requires people who commit alcohol-related crimes to present themselves twice a day, every day, for a breathalyzer test in order to remain out of jail. If they fail to appear, or if the test shows they have been drinking, they go straight to jail for a day.

4. Judge Alm's program, called HOPE, applies swift, but moderate, sanctions to repeat offenders.  Probationers are required to call in every day to see if it is their day to be tested.  It has led to "reduced drug use by more than 80% and days behind bars by more than 50%, according to figures from the National Institute of Justice. Offenders quickly learned that drug use was no longer something they could get away with, and even most long-term users were able to quit. The program freed them from the cycle of use, crime and incarceration."

5. The Drug Market Intervention program.  Deeply established drug markets have disappeared quickly when the police rounded up the drug dealers, jailed the most violent ones, and gave the non-violent ones the choice to either stop completely, to move their business underground, or go to jail. 

6. The Boston Ceasefire program.  With this program gang violence and murder has been vastly eliminated.  When every member of the gang feels intense police pressure on all their illegal activities, the gang leadership finds it beneficial to enforce a non-violence pact.

Spiritual, intelligent cognition causes us to abandon the worn-out platitudes, prejudices, and ignorance common to obstinately repeating ineffective solutions.  We have the ability to perceive and implement effective, new solutions from supreme INTELLIGENCE.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Mass media inundates us daily with the latest medical advice.  But most of the medical research the advice is based on is incorrect.  As the Atlantic reports, "Much of what medical researchers conclude in their studies is misleading, exaggerated, or flat-out wrong. So why are doctors—to a striking extent—still drawing upon misinformation in their everyday practice? Dr. John Ioannidis has spent his career challenging his peers by exposing their bad science." 

We can do vastly more for our overall health by aligning our lives with the spiritual equipoise of LOVE/SOUL.  A LOVE-directed life is engaged in wellness-multiplying activities.  For instance, we learn new ideas, discover new activities, nurture loving and mutually supportive relationships, participate in helping those in need, eat a healthy and balanced diet, and engage in consistent, moderate exercise.   Activities like these evidence spiritual and physical wellness.  We possess an underlying spiritual essence which emanates from LOVE/SOUL, and living a life of wellness makes this evident. 
Spiritual womanhood/manhood is triumphant over human adversity.  When early Christianity's St. Catherine was confronted with malicious attacks she repelled them with MIND-derived power and grace.  The Roman Emperor's advisors were so influenced by the logic and conviction of Catherine's spiritual explanations that some of them converted to Christianity's matter-transcending gospel.  Then there was the time when she was going to be executed by being runned over by a large, spiked wooden wheel.  The wheel crumbled when she touched it because she was coruscating with an inspired, bold, and triumphant spirit.
While psychiatry and the pharmaceutical giants promote that mixing chemicals to spark the brain's electrical impulses is the answer to mental problems, SOUL-sense pacifies, corrects and harmonizes the human mind.  Contrary to popular material impressions, SOUL produces in us a healthy and peaceful nature. The NYTimes reported (on 4/20/2012) this: "Fast forward to 2012 and the same antidepressants that inspired such enthusiasm have become the new villains of modern psychopharmacology — overhyped, overprescribed chemicals, symptomatic of a pill-happy culture searching for quick fixes for complex mental problems. In “The Emperor’s New Drugs,” the psychologist Irving Kirsch asserted that antidepressants work no better than sugar pills and that the clinical effectiveness of the drugs is, largely, a myth."  Spiritual meditation/prayer, on the other hand, is being proven by thousands every day to be a harmonizing force to the brain/body.  When we bathe consciousness with SOUL's transcendent ideas they correct and cleanse the inner workings of the mind and body.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Our wholesome convictions can cannonball us past the most insidious and invidious conditions to outstanding success.
Artemisia, the 17 century woman painter, is an example of this: Her mother died when she was 12, she was of lower class origin and grew up in a rough, sometimes violent, household. She was raped as a teenager and later confronted her rapist, a member of the aristocracy, in a greatly publicized rape trial.  Society ostracized her for her stand.  In spite of this, she went on to become an accomplished, lucrative painter, who obtained aristocratic commissions from all over Europe.    
Life's struggels/competition can drain our "emotional tank" when we approach them with the win-at-all-costs ethos of professional sports. We can fill our emotional tank by remembering that our education and personal development, and the lifting up of others, is a moment-by-moment joy.  SOUL/LOVE fuels us.
Neuroscientists, Kahneman and Tversky, have shown us how the human mind is a wildnerness of biases, presumptions, ignorance, misperceptions, false memories, and habit-traps.  These limitations are overcomed by educating ourselves with opposite concepts, being at ease with contradiction, and pursuing spiritual enlightenment.
We can walk in the midst of the human crowd, but choose to live spiritual values.  This is a Wisdom-story: "There are these two young fish swimming along, and they happen to meet an older fish swimming the other way, who nods at them and says, ‘Morning, boys, how’s the water?’ And the two young fish swim on for a bit, and then eventually one of them looks over at the other and goes, ‘What the hell is water?’

Spiritual laws/forces/values are the "water" we swim in every day.  The ALL-SPIRIT/LOVE can sometimes be "hidden in plain sight." It is, therefore, imperative and salubrious to remind ourselves, "I am moving in SPIRIT/LOVE!" 

A pearl of Wisdom/Truth from novelist David Foster Wallace:

"The really important kind of freedom involves attention, and awareness, and discipline, and effort, and being able truly to care about other people and to sacrifice for them, over and over, in myriad petty little unsexy ways, every day. That is real freedom. The alternative is unconsciousness, the default setting, the ‘rat race’—the constant gnawing sense of having had and lost some infinite thing.”

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

1 Chronicles 16:27, New International Reader's Version (NIRV)

27 Glory and majesty are all around him. Strength and joy can be seen in the place where he lives.

Eddy: “In the order of Science, in which the Principle is above what it reflects, all is one grand concord.”

PRINCIPLE/MIND is sovereign intelligence, love, dominion and harmony.  We live in the prosperous and concordant ambience of PRINCPLE, and are endowed with its illimitable qualities and resources. 

Romans 8:2, New Life Version (NLV)

2 The power of the Holy Spirit has made me free from the power of sin and death. This power is mine because I belong to Christ Jesus.

Eddy: “In the illusion of death, mortals wake to the knowledge of two facts: (1) that they are not dead; (2) that they have but passed the portals of a new belief.”  And, “Mortals waken from the dream of death with bodies unseen by those who think that they bury the body.”  Finally, “One moment of divine consciousness, or the spiritual understanding of Life and Love, is a foretaste of eternity.”

We have SPIRIT-impelled lives.  We are time-death-free, non-physical, expressions of SOUL.  We thrive with SOUL’s irrepressible health, love, intelligence, purpose and achievement.

John 3:16, New Century Version (NCV)

16 "God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son so that whoever believes in him may not be lost, but have eternal life.

Eddy: “Life is deathless.  Life is the origin and ultimate of man, never attainable through death, but gained by walking in the pathway of Truth both before and after that which is called death.”

LIFE produces in us its full and incessant splendor.  Our incorporeal, ever-lasting essence is the one and only outcome of LIFE, (is the only “Son/Daughter” of LIFE-GOD).  Our SPIRIT-drawn wholeness and vitality defines us, and this view overrides hindrances, losses, decay and death.