Archive for November, 2012

Compassion Conversation 3

Tuesday, November 27th, 2012

Is it strike 3 and you’re out? (Hope not!:) What possibly could one still have to say about compassion? Haven’t i exhausted that topic yet??? Sorry, but nope. Up to bat again…

THANKS for tuning in/listening!:) For Compassion Conversation 3 context, please check out: Compassion Conversation 1 and Compassion Conversation 2

Compassion and sovereignty go together or should. Who rules the world? Do you feel like: “everybody wants to rule the world!” and if one cannot rule the “world” as in: “the earth, together with all of its countries, peoples, and natural features.” (on-line dictionary definition)…some at least want to rule “their” world! Are you shedding tears or fears ruling your world?! Who really rules your world? COMPASSION?!:)

Welcome to your life
There’s no turning back
Even while we sleep
We will find you
Acting on your best behaviour
Turn your back on mother nature
Everybody wants to rule the world

It’s my own design
It’s my own remorse
Help me to decide
Help me make the most of freedom and of pleasure
Nothing ever lasts forever
Everybody wants to rule the world

I can’t stand this indecision
Married with a lack of vision
Everybody wants to rule the world
Say that you’ll never never never never need it
One headline why believe it ?
Everybody wants to rule the world

Tears for Fears Everybody Wants to Rule the World by Celtiemama

Who has the right to rule? And who’s rule is right or best: compassion for everyone? War mongers? Big business? The winner of the most votes? The most popular? The topdog? The underdog? The one with the most (energy) gas? The one who cares the most and loves the most? The one who has sacrificed the most? The one with the most accurate knowledge (smartest)? The strongest? The richest? The one here first? The oldest? The youngest? Who decides?!

One wise king (Solomon) with “happy” subjects said: “man has dominated man to his injury.” Another person (who some considered a …


Compassion Conversation 2

Sunday, November 25th, 2012

Thanks for joining me for our Compassion Conversation 2. To bring You up to speed, have you read 1 Compassion Conversation yet?…

The limbic (meaning “ring”) system is located in the forebrain and is virtually identical in all mammals. It sits just above the brain stem, with the two structures somewhat resembling a bagel with a finger (the brain stem) passing through it. This “system” is not composed of a single large brain structure. Instead, the limbic system is comprised of a large group of complex and oddly shaped smaller structures surrounding the upper portion of the brain stem. Each structure has an immense number of critically important circuits linking them to one another and to the cerebral cortex. These interconnected structures are intimately associated with our basic drives, bodily temperature control, hormone production, and emotions.~Brain Basics for the Teaching Professional by Kenneth A. Wesson

We discussed in our previous compassion conversation the role our limbic system plays in assigning emotional priority to auditory input and how our desire(s) determines our listening. Basically, we listen (pay attention/heed) to what we “want” to hear–what has Top Emotional Priority to us individually.

To examine our listening skills, perhaps, we should examine our emotional priorities?! Because listening is learning and unless we can broaden our emotional priority (to include concern for others)…our learning (i.e. compassion) and listening will be limited at best.

Are our desires selfish? Unselfish? For example, if #1 (me) is my top emotional priority then i listen/pay attention/learn and/or practice what will benefit #1! or if my top emotional priority is unselfish and/or concern for other fragile-breathing life…i listen (pay attention and learn and/or practice) what will benefit not just myself, but all breathing-fragile life!

This #1 talk reminds me of an old joke a friend told–let’s see if i don’t mess it up: “When you’re looking out for #1, you’ll step in #2!” :)

Who likes words/thoughts/behaviors/patterns that degrade and strip us or others of dignity and respect?! Compassion conversation is the usage of words that are thoughtful, non-offensive, a uniting language …


Compassion Conversation 1

Saturday, November 24th, 2012

As one grows, learns, develops, changes…so does one’s language. From mumbling to baby talk to lecturing. *It’s always in a state of flux as are we.

[*language/speech/communication/conversation]

As Caregivers and Partners, breathing-fragile life, we use a specific, particular set of words and vocabulary to aid/help other breathing-fragile life. How wide or cramped is your “caregiver” vocabulary? (Caregivers should speak compassion!:) How fluent or fluid is your compassion conversation??

Thoughts, words, speech, language, communication…obviously, interest me much as a talker!:) (If you wish, you can check out my previous posts: A Leader’s Language: Are You Fluent? or A Compassionate Caregiver Cries)

Talking is one means of learning. Listening is probably a better way of learning! Yeah, you’re correct, I need to listen more, eh? :)

Researchers have found that while the limbic system of our brain helps us focus on one thing while sustaining ability to hear various sounds–differentiating between many sounds becomes difficult when it involves simultaneously listening to human speech. When 2 voices compete for your ear to whom do you listen?!

 Creative Commons License photo credit: ScoRDS Creative Commons License photo credit 1: mavnjess

I read this eye-opener point or rather ear-opener: “What we desire influences the way we hear!”  What do you desire? We select the speech we listen to/focus on depending on which one (person) we “want” to hear!

Do you pay attention?…

Part of our regulatory auditory mechanism, which tunes and de-tunes our attention process, is the limbic system. It is responsible for assigning more or less attention to a given auditory input. So, if there are multiple auditory inputs, the input most relevant to our conscious and subconscious mechanism receives top priority. When the limbic system detects new and/or more relevant information, it passes …


GRATITUDE: Year-Round Attitude!

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

A New Gratitude Journal CollageGratitude: a year-round attitude!:) One does not need a “specific” day or “time” to limit their expressions of appreciation and thanks! Gratitude is a way of life that brings benefits to: day-long, month-long, year-long, life-long living and giving!:)

Professor Robert Emmons, of the University of California at Davis, says: “Gratitude research is beginning to suggest that feelings of thankfulness have tremendous positive value in helping people cope with daily problems, especially stress, and to achieve a positive sense of self.

Time magazine highlights something else: “People who describe themselves as feeling grateful . . . tend to have higher vitality and more optimism, suffer less stress, and experience fewer episodes of clinical depression than the population as a whole.”

Everyday one can find many reasons to give “THANKS!” Personally, for me, I’m choosing not to let certain traditions, national pressure (and/or) peer/family pressure dictate what I eat and when or when I give and what or when I say Thanks and why.

How would you measure your depth of Gratitude? Check this out from:  Professor Robert Emmons & Michael E. McCullough of the University of Miami:

MEASURING GRATITUDE

“Much of our initial work on gratitude has been devoted to examining the disposition to experience gratitude as a relatively stable affective trait. To measure this affective trait, we have developed a short scale called the Gratitude Questionnaire, whose current incarnation consists of six short self-report items. The GQ-6 is available here for download in PDF format. This document includes some interpretative material that allows one to determine where a person’s score on the GQ-6 falls relative to a large sample of adults who recently completed the measure. Finally, this short technical document describes the psychometric properties of the scale, including some of the most important evidence for its reliability and validity.”

Appreciation and gratitude must be cultivated and grown. As a parent, i strive to set a “Gratitude Attitude” example for my kids. THANKS …


Leaf Peeping or Heart Peeping?

Monday, November 19th, 2012

Autumn BranchesAutumn–I like fall. Not too hot. Not too cold…ah, just right!:) It has been a favorite season/time of the year for me for a while. As a kid, loved the fall foliage…The exquisite fall colors and crisp air. Something invigorating about breathing in crisp, cool, cold air and seeing my breath in front of me…evidence of life. Crisp air and apple crunch (a freshly picked apple) you bite…simple pleasure. (Can’t take for granted the simple pleasures.) Every breath taken: an undeserved privilege…

I actually miss that: breathing cold air. I’m full of hot air here in Fl. -lol:)

Autumn, it’s not an extreme season..yes, i like Spring, too. What’ s your favorite season? Why? Actually, aspects of all seasons one can appreciate their beauty.

Growing up in New England, autumn became a favorite season/time of year for me for various reasons mostly positive ones. Oh no, here i go again–”Falling” into the trap of naivety once more (being a friendly extrovert has its particular set of risks, so does being stupid -lol:)…letting You my readers, peep into my heart (inner person)! Will you guard my heart? Will you safeguard your own heart?

One must safeguard their own heart for…“out of the heart are the sources of life.”  (FYI: King Solomon (referred to in my last post) said that which illustrates the treacherousness and desperateness of the “human” heart–showing that even the best hearts can be enticed without constant vigilance.)

Heart basketCreative Commons License photo credit: victoire_za Creative Commons License photo credit 1: pamhule

While respecting You my readers/a fellow beating heart/s– how smart is it for me to expose to relative “strangers”…my beating heart?! (“If you are an adult, your heart likely beats over 100,000 times a day. An elephant’s heart beats, on average, 25 times a minute, while that of a canary virtually buzzes at about 1,000 beats a minute. A mouse, with …


Mmm, mmm GOOD–a Cup of Comfort Soup!

Saturday, November 17th, 2012

Hungry? Of course! We all are. Some are learning to cope with excruciating hunger pangs! Some are sadly in a state of starvation; self-inflicted or other.

Are you experiencing a famine? I’m not talking just hunger for sustenance for the body (though that is critical to life, too). This is hunger for the soul, the mind, the heart. This is hunger for answers to deeper questions like Why?? Why are we here?? Why do we die?? Why do good people suffer?? Why are people so mean to each other?? Why do people scheme instead of honest communication?? Why can’t we all get along?? Why care about anybody but yourself?? Why do my efforts to help seem in vain?? Why war?? Why peace??

Why ask why?

Okay big deal, so we’re hungry and we’re thirsty, too! Those (ordinary) base needs must be filled. However, in order to be happy, i believe our Top (extraordinary) Need is a “spiritual” hunger that must be satisfied.

Yet, as caregivers and Partners in Wellness, we are constantly flooded/bombarded/force-fed information! We are drowning in info. It’s a Tsunami coming at us from all directions, all sources. i.e. the internet, the media, etc.

Is your head above water?! Are you staying afloat or being consumed/saturated or washed away, swallowed up?!

So how is it we can be force-fed/chugging/drowning/flooded by information for our mind, heart, soul and yet be in a continuous state of dehydration and/or polydipsia?! Are you compulsively drinking? Are you parched? Do you have an unquenchable thirst?

What do you process?? What do you swallow?? What do you swim (believe) as the flood waters engulf your ideas, beliefs, “comfort” zone of living/learning? Do you protect your “cherished” possessions (i.e. perceptions, preconceived-ideas, beliefs, traditions, knowledge) or do you run to higher ground? Do you attempt to paddle along with the popular/current/information flow of the day? What do you do to keep from drowning? Do you swim against the current? Will someone throw us a life-jacket?


Distraction can be Deadly!

Monday, November 12th, 2012

Teen DriverMillions are injured and/or killed by cars annually! According to World Health Organization:

“Every year the lives of almost 1.3 million people are cut short as a result of a road traffic crash. Between 20 to 50 million more people suffer non-fatal injuries, with many incurring a disability as a result of their injury.”

Have you or a loved one been in a car crash? Let’s hope not! However, the likelihood is probably or most-likely.

Are you a SAFE driver or  D`i~s/t*r=act.\>t.e.d  Driver/ DWD or DWT??

Texting while driving creates a crash risk 23 times worse than driving while not distracted.~National Highway Traffic Safety Administration

According to Distraction.Gov Official US Government Website for Distracted Driving:

Distracted driving is any activity that could divert a person’s attention away from the primary task of driving. All distractions endanger driver, passenger, and bystander safety.

These types of distractions include:

  • Texting
  • Using a cell phone or smartphone
  • Eating and drinking
  • Talking to passengers
  • Grooming
  • Reading, including maps
  • Using a navigation system
  • Watching a video
  • Adjusting a radio, CD player, or MP3 player

Text messaging requires visual, manual, and cognitive attention from the driver, it is by far the most alarming distraction. ~Distraction.Gov

We, in a motorized world, have a lot to learn from the behavior of a school of fish,” says Toshiyuki Andou, the principal engineer of a Japanese car manufacturer who designed tiny robot cars that move in a group without collision by using cutting-edge technology that recreates the friendly travel environment of schooling fish.

Yellowfin GoatfishCreative Commons License photo credit 2: PacificKlaus Creative Commons License photo credit 1: State Farm

An article: “Fish Schooling” helped me appreciate how we can reduce car crashes by imitating the behavior of schooling fish. The article mentioned that fish learn through their eyes and a special sense organ called the lateral line. Fish locate and perceive other fish and react …


Sovereignty Soup: A World Kitchen

Tuesday, November 6th, 2012

Pea soupSovereignty Soup..somebody’s cookin’ and serving it up! Do you like soup? Chicken or Italian wedding soup or vegetable soup or soup du jour? How about stone soup? Soup a comfort food. You don’t have to be homeless to enjoy a slurp.

Some are homeless in the sense of not belonging…not fitting in–lacking “home” or feeling “less”/inadequate…lacking a place to lay their head or retreat in times of trouble. Please know, you’re not homeless when you read my blog–you’re welcome here! i will always share some soup–”comfort” food!:)

Some are homeless by choice…they choose the freedom of travel, gypsy-like, temporary-resident existence. May be, that’s a key to their survival, being free to pick up and leave at their choosing/when they need to…a nomadic life-style of neutrality.

Back to Soup! Everybody has their favorite/partial soup (religious soup, science soup, academic soup, political soup, fiction soup, opinion soup, soul soup, sovereignty soup) Which soup do you eat?? which soup is the most nutritious?? most beneficial for your over-all health: short-term/long?! Which soup will prolong your precious life?? Which soup gives you peace of mind?!

I know you’re hungry, but PLEASE choose your soup carefully!:) Will you let your hunger control you?! In case you didn’t know: you don’t have to eat ANY soup. One can choose not to eat from the choices forced upon one! i.e. Today, some may feel forced to choose their political soup. It’s either this soup or that soup…2 choices of soup: is that really the only choices you have?–i don’t think so! Especially, if you’re not sure of all the ingredients and you have serious allergies i.e. life or death ones.

Don’t forget, there are outstanding “historical” figures…men who have had great influence on the lives of millions (whether you personally believe/agree with them or not, that’s not the point) who had chosen to fast (from time to time) for what they considered important reasons:

“You wish to know what the marks of a man are who wants to realize Truth which is God,” he wrote. “He must reduce himself to zero and …


Migraine Monday? Manic Monday? or MARVELOUS Monday?

Monday, November 5th, 2012

Monday?! Do you like Mondays?? “Mon” (my) Day! Recuperating from the week-ends’ busy activity?! Migraine Monday? Meditative Monday? Marvelous Monday? or Manic Monday? (The Bangles come to mind.) Hope You, my Readers, are having a Marvelous Monday!:)

After my long book-of-a-post, was meditating about what could i possibly share of an uplifting, light nature…something fun and/or educational. Thought perhaps of giving you a link to a kid’s story written a while back. Chuck Brown are you out there??…FYI: that’s not the title, but the voice artist who brought, Petie’s Peanut Butter Pizza to life. What a Voice! I wonder how many kids have listened and enjoyed the story through the years? Do you know Mr. Brown? He will “light up your brain!”:)

Anyway, our son was going through an eating phase. Peanut butter. Loved the stuff and not much else. Hubby and I home cook food for our kids daily. We believe in the benefits of family meal time!:) We always try to expose the kids to a variety of healthy food. They like quinoa, eggplant, spinach, hummus, stuffed jalapenos, various veggies and fish, etc. Oh and pizza!:) They enjoy cooking with us as well and trips to the health food/organic store with Dad. (It can be pretty expensive for families to eat healthy–we try the best we can afford.) What about your family? So “thankful” to have food to feed my kids. My heart breaks for less-fortunate folks/families who go hungry!:( Can’t we all SHARE!:)

Creative Commons License photo credit: skolbwilliams Creative Commons License photo credit 1: oanabefort

Hubby likes to feed our brain while we eat (i.e. sharing encouraging points and things for us to read/discuss together as a family). This helps us stay close and grow spiritually/emotionally/academically as a family unit. When/if eating alone,  …


Significant Sky–Insignificant i

Saturday, November 3rd, 2012

The sunrise must be beautiful from up thereWhen one looks up at the sky at daybreak or sunset…what awesome artistry! The clouds, the stars, the moon and me. How vast and significant the sky, how insignificant i. Do you ever gaze at the sky and wonder: WHY??

When I look down life is beneath me. When I look up is life ABOVE me? (Independence and arrogance answer no!) What do i know that i haven’t been taught…where do my thoughts go? not? Beyond the sky, Beyond i…

“One can only marvel at the perseverance with which man has striven, throughout his history, to reach outside himself. His energies were never directed solely toward the necessities of life. He was forever questing, groping his way further, aspiring to the unattainable. This strange and inherent urge in the human being is his spirituality.” ~Ivar Lissner in his book Man, God and Magic

“Just 3.5 ounces of soil has been found to host 10,000 species of bacteria, not to mention the total number of microbes. Some species have been found almost 2 miles underground!” ~Journal of Industrial Microbiology, “Total Bacterial Diversity in Soil and Sediment Communities-A Review,” by V. Torsvik, R. Sorheim and J. Goksoyr, Vol. 17, 1996, pp. 170-178 & Science, “Environmental Genomics Reveals A Single-Species Ecosystem deep Within Earth,” by Dylan Chivian, et al, Vol. 322, October 10, 2008 pp. 275-278.

According to Scientific American Magazine, “Microbe Census Reveals Air Crawling with Bacteria,” by David Biello…the diversity of microbial life in the air is “on par with the diversity of microbes in the soil.”

Recently reading about Biomimetics…an interesting field of study and mimick/copy of the design features of various wildlife/creatures/species/kinds to produce new products and/or to improve performance of existing products on the market (i.e. “concept car imitates low-drag and stable design of the boxfish” or “aircraft wings already mimic shape of birds’ wings.”) New Scientist reports: “Researchers at the University of Florida have built a prototype remote-controlled drone with a seagull’s ability to hover, dive and climb …


 

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