Category Archives: Uncategorized

Anger only a wake up call, wisdom motivates

I interviewed a candidate for 19th District Congress in New York. We talked about the bigger picture, this election year’s uproarious campaigning.

It was noted that some candidates behavior is reckless, but it spotlights an anger in America.

Maybe so.

Even I get disgusted with immoral politicians. But egos, greed, and self-service aren’t new to humanity. Big money people don’t have a monopoly on dishonesty.

Anger does seem to be in the air, however. People are ready for change. We are ready to get out any vicious cycle that demeans the good in humanity.

But unless anger is seen only as an alarm clock to wake up, and not a motivator, that vicious cycle continues.

Anger never provides an inspiring or logical answer or reason to do something, or not.

Anger is only the extreme opposite of passivity, indifference–the habit of repeating the same behavior because that’s the way it’s always been done.

I don’t ignore my disgust, but I know it’s only a warning to wake me up to follow life, truth, and love. I need to get out of the bed of anger or inaction and get up with wisdom.

 “In your anger do not sin: Do not let the sun go down while you are still angry.” Ephesians 4:26, NIV

Quoting from science & religion to God: The manifestations of evil which counterfeit divine justice, conjure the picture of an angry God. “And in anger and wrath I will execute vengeance on the nations that did not obey.”[1] Correctly interpreted, the Bible verse shows that catastrophes, famines, and plagues are the self-destruction of error, not the destruction of God’s children. We have the ability (matter doesn’t) to demonstrate the strength and permanency of Spirit We can witness the brightening light of Truth, harmony, and the entireness of God.

orange sky

[1] Micah 5:15

Midlife joy

Vowing not to be those parents who hang onto the family farm with the hope that the children return to continue the tradition, my husband and I put our farm up for sale after our girls were out of college and told us they had no interest in farming. The property sold in five days. Stunned, my husband and I stared at one another and said at the same time, “Now what do we do?”

I believe that question was the beginning of a premature midlife crisis. It led to a year of colossal upheaval. The disruption in our life, however, bashed the typical definition of midlife crisis referred to by the public.

Boston psychologist, Lynn Margolies, PhD, wrote, “A sure sign you may be in a midlife crisis is if you are feeling trapped and very tempted to act out in ways that will blow up your life.” Margolies likened this phenomenon to a rebellious teenager and warned against jolting loved ones or pursuing unrealistic, hurtful goals.

A midlife crisis can be boiled down to a person discovering or rediscovering their identity and self-confidence.

Discovery is not a bad thing when taken by the horns and wrangled to our benefit rather than bane. Four fundamentals to motivating a positive crisis comes to mind when recalling my midlife predicament:

Family can be separated from the job. Family and farming were my identity or so I believed. We raised our children on the farm and fostered children, all of whom thrived, surrounded by nature, animals, and fresh fruits and vegetables. When the day came in which welled up inside me a storm infused wave of desire to escape the farm, I was able to see that I could escape the farm without leaving family.

Realistic goals are priority. My husband and I were unable to retire, financially and mentally. We needed to remember when making decisions that we were unemployed empty-nesters who needed to be practical. To start a new career meant starting at the bottom.

Stuff had to go, but not good memories. With no children in the house, there were less material demands. We also no longer needed a lot of the stuff we had. Getting rid of stuff made it easier to start at the bottom. Because my good memories are not attached to the stuff, I still have them today. This freedom made it easier to discover. It also made it easier to move across the United States, for the fun of it.

Take on a challenge. We decided to move to a whole different community. Mapping out a strategy, we met fears head on and it left me with a feeling of accomplishment. Piling it on, my husband said to me, “Let’s ride our motorcycles from Washington State to New York.” My brain could barely process his comment, but it did sound motivating. I agreed only to almost back out at the last minute. The idea of riding my motorcycle 3,000 miles was daunting, until I realized if I only made it to Montana, fine, I’ll sell the bike and fly in an airplane the rest of the way.

The motorcycle trip across America is indelibly marked in my mental databank as the best two-weeks in the history of trips and vacations. We rode Highway 2, a northern route that took us through Glacier National Park, over the Bitterroot Mountains where Lewis and Clark traversed 200 years previous, on foot.

I learned that I could ride in rain, wind, over snowy roads, and under blasted hot sunshine. I spent $9 to fill my gas tank at the station, while a camper owner at the nearby gas pump spent $232 to fill his tank.

I watched terrain change from desert to woodland. I felt a spiritual parallel as I changed from wishy-washy to “I can do this.” We rode into our new upstate New York hometown on our 25th wedding anniversary. We’ll be celebrating our thirty-third anniversary in a few weeks.

dandelion gone to seed

The glitch of complaint

Etta is in her eighties. An amazing woman who taught dance to our daughters when they were children.

I helped Etta last year when her husband was dying. It was a tough time, but she made it through and credits God’s love for being able to get through the death with grace.

On the phone yesterday, Etta told me, “Some days I miss Robert and wish he was here. Then I stop myself because I remember when taking care of Robert I would wish for time for myself.”

We laughed at the craziness of human mind, always wanting, always wishing.

We  talked some more and she helped me put a positive spin on something I’d been writing, a desire I’d been working on for weeks.

Connections such as these are powerful and make life purposeful.

Bing pink bush

What are you looking for?

Are you a peeping tom?

A fancier title for a peeping tom is a voyeur, a person who obtains sexual gratification from observing unsuspecting individuals who are partly undressed, naked, or engaged in sexual acts.

A broader definition of a voyeur is a person who habitually seeks sexual stimulation by visual means. Or, a prying observer who is usually seeking the sordid or the scandalous.

Whether looking through windows or on the internet for scandalous visual stimulation, we can ask ourselves, Can I look for something else? Can I see something other than the scandalous?

Yes, you can.

And, you don’t need to snoop around to do so. A voyeur is an observer. You are using your vision for communication, however, the satisfaction is short lived. To look for the sordid is to communicate the sordid, and it internally makes us feel nasty, cheap, and despicable.  Therefore, look for that which has more meaning. Look for qualities or character that really satisfy.

When we look for decency, patience, and honesty, we will find it. We don’t even have to snoop around to find it. I can sit on a bench in the middle of a busy park and watch people to find they are getting along and working together. I can see forgiveness and wisdom and courage.  It may not stimulate me sexually, but it does stimulate me spiritually and the satisfaction of being spiritually stimulated lasts.

If it is difficult to switch out looking at spirituality rather than sex, write down qualities worth looking at and practice doing so. You can and will see beauty, not the brutish. You can and will see form, not distortion. You can and will see respect, not prying. You can and will communicate that respect for others and yourself.

The eye of truth and love is at work. It sees integrity, not scandal.

 

Sadness over gay club killings

The distressing news about a gunman killing 49 people in a gay bar in Florida prompts me to express sadness and alertness. The notion that murder is an answer is very sad, and demands vigilant alertness. I want to see the bigger picture so as not to fall into the trap of spiritual amnesia.

Spiritual amnesia comes from broken memories consisting of a few imprints, whether detestable imprints or our favorite imprints. It’s an easy trap to fall into because our human minds are so limited, however, we can courageously and constantly stand with truths to counter these supposed answers that bring so much pain.

The gunman allegedly was affiliated with Islamic extremists and acted on homophobia. On the flipside, the gunman acted on tightly bound fundamental beliefs that heterosexuality is the one right and only way to live humanly and human beings who don’t conform to it will be damned.

Tearing apart those beliefs, if a person does believe heterosexuality is right, fine, they can live that way, but to impose their belief on others or disallow a loving relationship with others who think differently, is painful, unloving, ungodlike.

While we deal with this current gross tragedy, let’s not forget to break apart fundamental beliefs in their emerging stages at all levels, even those beliefs going on right now under the radar. Divorce won’t establish one right and only way of relating. Excommunication won’t promote a right and only way of behavior and thinking. A scientific invention won’t become a cure-all. Acting on those beliefs is also disastrous to humanity’s wellbeing.

Everyone seeks their understanding in different ways because there is no one describable truth to stand on or establish.

Spirituality broadens our views and keeps us from forgetting truth and love as it constantly unfolds. And, I’d like now to share some news so as not to be negatively influenced by my sadness. I do know personally a Muslim community in which are people who are loving and tolerant. I know a Muslim man who purchased a restaurant from a gay couple who he respects and appreciates immensely for their support and help in the business transaction.

I will not forget the good images.

Quoting from science & religion to God:

“People who insist on proving another method wrong, as if their way were the only way, will end up living out their condemnations. Like the person who adamantly opposes abortion, calling it murder, killing a doctor who performed abortions.

“The malicious instinct and morbid curiosity, with intents to kill morally and physically even fellow human beings, is unloosed, in order that the false claim of mind in matter might uncover its own crime of defying infinite, spiritual Mind.

“Does God create a material human out of Spirit? Does divine Mind commit fraud by making man and woman free to do wrong? Does God then stand on the sidelines waiting to reward the pious and punish the wrongdoer? Would anyone call it wise and good for God to create people and then condemn them to remain servants? Did God create human beings and challenge them to take control of, and dominate creation? No. No. No. No. No.

“God remains forever and is our Mind. We can’t lose Mind. Our relationship with God is indestructible. We can admit these facts even if they aren’t supported by human beliefs. Our spiritual senses can detect our unity with the one Mind and its manifestation of truth.

“Prayer is a mental exercise involving spiritual understanding, not human understanding. Our prayers start with faith in God and become deep and conscientious acknowledgments of Truth. We acknowledge a knowingness that we are the image and likeness of Spirit, in full unity with Life and Love.”

 

Hand picking Bible verses

The Bible is used for many things, good and bad.

Maria Stewart (1803-1879) used the Bible to defend her right to speak. At a time when the public consensus declared women were to be silent in church and public. Before 1832, when Stewart spoke before an audience of women and men, she was orphaned by age five and became an indentured servant, bound to a clergyman until she was fifteen.

At fifteen, she began supporting herself by working as a servant. She married in 1826, but her husband died in 1829. Her inheritance was taken from her. Six months after her husband died, Maria Stewart felt a transformation. She experienced a religious conversion in which she became convinced God was calling her to become a “warrior” for God and for freedom and for the oppressed Africa.

God may have an ambiguous reputation, however, when a person is left alone after being treated sorely unfair, it helps to have someone or something to rely on for support. God.

While mass consciousness touted Bible verses that implied it godless for women to speak up, Stewart used Bible verses that reinforced her right to be equal and to be one with God.

We pick and choose our Bible verses, only it’s best to do so with a good intent for the whole of humanity, for the exercise of tolerance and ethics.

Why make vigorous claims that the Bible says we are doomed if we don’t follow outgrown social rules?

No one follows all the rules in the Bible. We can’t. We have no desire to offer 10,000 sheep for burnt offerings. Bigamy and a man with 200 concubines is ridiculous today. There is no inferior human being. Women are completely able to spiritually interpret Scripture or sacred text of any kind, and write and speak on the subject.

Using the Bible for exclusion, isolation, and restriction is a bane. We can use the Bible for equality, spirituality, justice, and happiness.

II Timothy 1:7, ESV

“For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.”

From science & religion to God: A briefer narrative of Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health

“The law of Truth annihilates idolatry and improves social, civil, criminal, political, and religious codes. Spiritual metaphysics equalizes the sexes, annuls curses, and leaves nothing that can sin, suffer, be punished or destroyed.”

Mike Noonan with Glenanore Farms Boer Goats 2 cropped

 

Mindful success

“All in good time,” we’ve heard it been said. All in good time will the goal be reached. But it’s difficult to be patient when we have bills to pay, a rickety marriage, or a crummy job. We want change right now.

“It’s the journey, not the end,” we’re reminded. Success isn’t a destination, but the road we’re on. But what if the road is full of ruts, rocks, and too many intersections? What if the journey feels like a big pot of boiling melodrama and anxiety?

We can simmer that pot with mindfulness.

The most important step to mindfulness, however, is putting aside our own mind and immersing our consciousness in divine Mind.

Too often, we let our human minds organize, categorize, and mull over who has done what, or not. But, this action of the human mind isn’t “action” so much as “reaction” to past events. Not very mindful.

We have a spiritual consciousness in tune with a mindfulness of the now, which is directly linked to a promising future.

Here are three ways to feel your consciousness in tune with mindfulness:

  • Don’t be patient with problems, but be patient with solutions.
  • Get over yourself. Be in and of the universal Mind that wants the best for everyone.
  • Look for and admit each tiny success in your journey.

Spiritual successes are true victories. They are those times when we forgive our enemy, the times when we let go of a bad habit, those times when we stop loving chocolate more than God’s goodness, those times when we let the driver cut in front of us without getting angry, those times when we don’t blame someone else for our problems.

Every second we exercise a spiritual success we are getting stronger. The good times increase and the journey becomes interesting, creative, and welcoming. I talk more about these powerful ideas in my new book, from science & religion to God: A briefer narrative of Mary Baker Eddy’s Science and Health.

We aren’t here to master the world as much as we are to master those thoughts that place limitations on our health, happiness, and peace. Because so many people in the past and present are able to overcome their limitations, that means we can too. The divine force is universal, available to everyone.

In my new book, core spiritual principles are stated. The timeless ideas are tools to use when on our spiritual journey. You can be patient with progress. You can be a deep and inclusive thinker. You can find each success in your journey.

cactus and palm trees

 

 

 

 

 

%d bloggers like this: