Saturday, April 15, 2017

The Mystical Light of Easter and Passover

I love and cherish the Divine Spirit that is the inspiration for the sacred rituals, celebrations, ceremonies, traditions, and faith within all religions. This week and time of year is holy week, and while I am not exclusively Christian or Jewish, I honor and respect this sacred time of the year happening now. The hymns, songs, music, liturgies, chants, prayers, benedictions, and blessings are all beautiful in their own way, developed and created to celebrate life, freedom of the spirit, and love of the Divine.

Is the Mystical Light Inclusive?

The mystical light of the Divine Spirit is not exclusive to any time of year or to any particular faith. It is eternal, a "living light",  and is always shining upon us and within us, beyond the quantum physics of measurement of time and space. However at this time of year there is a collective focus around the world of the symbols and rituals of faith.

Is the Resurrection of Life Happening Now?

Is it possible that the resurrection of life beyond death is already happening now within everyone in that our spirit is eternal beyond the aging and death of physical reality?

Even though this could be seen as a belief, by "living in the question" it opens up possibilities beyond our comprehension, and we can acknowledge that there are mysteries in creation that we do not yet know, and that we have an open mind to explore. Imagine the journeys of a life beyond this one when we experience the exodus from this world into other kingdoms.  

The Mystical Light of the Kingdom of Heaven and Passover

Light in the Hebrew tradition represents Divine presence. The light of candles during Passover and Easter represents the Divine presence of protection during the exodus as well as the mystical light of the Divine Spirit within us. It has been said that the primary calling of Jesus was to initiate the kingdom of heaven. Jesus fully embodied the mystical light of the Divine Spirit with healing, teachings, and the Divine presence or kingdom of heaven within him. He stated that the kingdom of heaven is also within us.  

May the Christ consciousness of the mystical living light be celebrated as the kingdom of heaven within us, and may the love of the Divine Spirit be with us now during these sacred holidays and within every eternal moment.  Amen

Sunday, March 26, 2017

Inspiration - The Keyword for 2017

If you think that another keyword describes what is going on with news and views out there, then you are spot on. However, what keyword is needed for 2017 to balance things out a bit?  This is an invitation to get inspired this year, even in the midst of uninspiring news.

We all need inspiration for happiness, good health, and to enjoy life. To live life without being inspired is just not as fun. Inspiration is like a waterfall. It is always flowing beautifully into the river of life below, waiting to be discovered and enjoyed.

Here's ten ideas to get inspired or remain inspired for the rest of the year, if this is something that you want more of in your life.

1) Take time for your inspiration
It is important in our busy schedules to make time for inspiration. Block out an hour or two half hours and turn off the cell phone. Manage your inspiration time as well as you manage the rest of your day. You deserve it. 

2) Love
Love can be experienced in so many ways to receive as well as give inspiration. Use love with the ideas that follow, and possibly as an ongoing reminder of the joy it can bring and is bringing every day.

3) Music
Not just any music. Music that is inspiring. Music that you love. Your favorites. Google it if you want more ideas.  Some classical music can be very inspiring. Pachebel Canon in D Major, Elgar Nimrod from "Enigma Variations", Beethoven, Mozart, Bach, and many others.  Using headphones could be another idea, while sitting, focusing on just the music, and letting go of all other thoughts.

3) Inspiring quotes
Your favorites, new ones, printed out to view daily, or used in your communications. Sharing inspiring quotes. Googling inspiring quotes. Checking out Goodreads as a source of hundreds of inspiring quotes on any topic. Sign on to the daily emails that send out inspiration into your inbox every day.

Brene Brown - The Power of Vulnerabilty
4) Inspiring YouTube Videos or Movies
On YouTube there are quite a large number of inspiring videos such as singing flash mobs, people overcoming challenges, or your favorite songs being performed. The most popular Ted Talks of all time has some inspirational talks such as Brene Brown's "The Power of Vulnerability".  View a Google search result for lists: "most inspirational movies"

 5) Get Out in Nature with Friends or Family
The ones who will help support your inspiration. You know who they are. Any activity together that is inspiring such as a sunset walk, a hike to a waterfall, a scenic road trip, or even a week in Cancun or Hawaii. 

6) Stunning photography and Art
A photography website such as can be searched based on your preferences. Search for waterfalls, flowers, ocean, rivers, and other inspiring topics. Enjoy the view.

7) Books
Enjoy an inspiring story with a new novel, or great novel that you loved can be read again. Self help books are abundant and there's so many to choose from on  Goodreads, your Amazon wish list, or browsing a bookstore or library. Books can be very inspirational and take us on a journey that we have not been on before.

8) Animal companions or contact
If you own a pet, share the love in new ways that inspires both of you. If you don't visit a pet store or zoo.

9) Church, or Other Organizations and Events
Based on your preferences there are many places to get inspired. Seminars, workshops, support groups are a few ideas.

10) Meditation, prayer, spiritual inspiration
Whether it is a guided meditation on a CD, or your own meditation or prayer, inspiration came come up from the depths within your soul. Depending on your beliefs or faith, a Divine Spirit is always a source of inspiration.

Although inspiration can be important at any time, it is especially needed now, individually and collectively. The adventure of discovering new inspiration every day, and throughout the day can be a fun and rewarding experience. Inspiration is the keyword for 2017.

"The invitation of the keyword “Inspiration” is to ask how we can be uplifted, encouraged, motivated, and moved deeply in ways that allow us to be invigorated or energized to love our life and live with more passion, awareness, confidence, creativity and happiness."
 ~ David Lawrence Brown,  333 Keywords to Change Your Life 


Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Sacred Activism - Why I Stand in the "Eye of the Hurricane"

John Lennon's song Imagine is a song of sacred activism
The eye of the hurricane is that still calm center surrounded by turbulent winds. As a metaphor, it works for me as to how I show up and choose to be with news and world events.

On November 12 2016, the day after the election, I posted some modified lyrics from the song Imagine by John Lennon on Facebook. The whole country was in an intense emotional state. That intensity continues to this day. The lyrics that I posted were :

"Imagine ALL the people in our country
praying for healing our country every day
When there is a will there can be a way
It isn't hard to do or say or is it? we choose our own way
You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one
Thank you John Lennon for the lyrics....I changed them a bit just for fun"
David Brown

In 1973 I walked into the student union of Chico State University and told the organizers who were  planning another "peace" anti-war march the next day that the march will not be effective if they are yelling negative slogans to the public and other students such as  "1-2-3-4 we don't want your f____ing war" which happened the day before.

I said that the example of Martin Luther King to march in silence would be ten times more powerful and that people would "listen to the silence" rather than being offended at being yelled at. I left the meeting after saying what I felt compelled to say. The next day there was a silent march. Hundreds participated and experienced it. It was a powerful expression of "sacred activism".

Today I stand in the eye of the "hurricane" in full awareness of the turbulent winds of opinions, news, fear, negativity and divisiveness. This is not a passive stance. I choose what organizations, events, and people that I want to support. I choose what thoughts, vibes, prayers, and feelings that I have towards the "turbulent winds" of the hurricane. These are ways in how I engage in sacred activism. The other is meditation.

Today I stand for love and respect, forgiveness and compassion, justice, happiness, health, freedom, and life for all of humanity including all world leaders.

Sacred activism for me is not being against something. It is being for something. It is unifying not divisive, loving not fearful, compassionate and not violent. I love the vibe.

Conscious spirit-led activism honors the divine spirit (or whatever name is chosen for that subtle connection)  within all humanity and all living things, including the earth which supports all living things.

I honor and have deep respect for those leaders who have demonstrated this in their own lives and changed the world including Mahatma Ghandi, Martin Luther King, the Dalai Lama,  John Lennon and Mother Teresa to name a few. I honor and respect all views including those different than mine recognizing that everyone has the right to believe, choose, and have their own opinions whether they are informed or not, or have studied all the issues or not. There is no shame or blame or judgment as this seems to perpetuate divisiveness.

I acknowledge that a spiritual revolution is going on that is affecting all areas of life in positive ways and it is not organized or controlled or led by any one movement, organization or faith or belief system. It is a global conscious awakening to new possibilities, solutions to challenges, economic sustainability, and a blessing to all people in the world, especially children.

" Imagine all the people, Living life in peace". (John Lennon, Imagine)
Peace in our lifetime is already starting to happen now. Can you imagine it? Feel it?

Friday, March 10, 2017

Why Meditation is Amazing

Back in the day, I taught Transcendental Meditation as part of the popular trend at that time when the Beatles had moved on from drugs and decided to pursue a spiritual path. Many followed their path in their own journey. Between teaching it to hundreds of people in Pasadena, California, I was able to go on retreats where we would meditate and do yoga extensively. Three years before that I was given the book Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda, and learned about meditation then. Over the years I practiced various forms of meditation. In recent years I had gotten out of the regular practice every day.

It was not until October 2016 that I finally established a regular meditation practice twice a day for about 24-30 minutes each. Before then it was sporadic and not regular. Now it is a regular practice twice a day. If you feel that you want to meditate and yet everything else gets in the way, who is allowing things to get in the way? That was my epiphany.

Meditation is a perfect practice for everyone, especially seniors and baby boomers, as life can become one of reflection in middle age, and going deep might work for some folks. For others, maybe not. We each have our own choices as to what we enjoy.

Why can meditation be amazing? Deep, Silent, Relaxing, Subtle, Opening, Insights, Breath, Awareness, Releasing, Joyful, Peaceful, Stillness, Being, Health benefits, Spiritual inspiration, Consciousness growth, and Creative ideas to name a few.

There are many different types of meditation techniques. We seem to be guided sometimes to what we need to learn about anything, meditation included. If it becomes too structured then it may not allow that spontaneity of Spirit to open up. It may be a combination. The structure of setting aside the time and space and length of meditation and what the intention or purpose is can be helpful in our busy lives. We need to be gentle and loving with ourselves and how we approach meditation. It is usually in meditation that we receive insights into different areas of our life, including creative ideas about our life, our work, our relationships, spiritual inspiration, or how to let go of those busy thoughts and use subtle thoughts, mantras, or words that resonate with our soul on deep levels.

A meditation may take on a “life of its own” and we may only be a witness to where it leads us, even though we had thought before the meditation started that we knew where we were going with it. That is a fun part of the journey.

A few things that I enjoy doing during meditations in general are acknowledging the reality of the Divine Spirit, acknowledging the oneness of my spirit, using subtle or quiet thoughts at deeper levels as affirmations, prayers, various mantras, and gratitude. I also enjoy feeling love opening up as I do this, love of myself, my body, my life, of others, sending love out to certain people, leaders, countries, love of the Divine Spirit, and forgiveness of myself and others that may come to mind that need forgiveness. Certain prayers, either spontaneous or favorites can be used. By mixing it up, and also allowing for spontaneity of letting go of a structured or planned meditation, it opens things up and sometimes allows for a deeper experience. 

Being open to a deeper experience are those moments of meditation in which I am not “doing” anything, such as those things listed above, and just “being in the moment” without thoughts, allowing the silence and stillness of the perceived or known or mysterious presence of the Divine Spirit to reveal itself in whatever ways without expectation and sometimes with expectation.
Another type of meditation that may be included as a part of the experience is visualization. This can be subtle and specific, or a planned story. There are so many types of visualizations and creative ideas about the how, why, and what that it is like a menu of visual possibilities that you can create to use in meditation.

A theme or focus for the entire meditation can also be another approach. For example, a love meditation would only focus on feelings and thoughts of love during the entire meditation. Any thoughts or feelings that come up that are not related to your intention of love can be loved and then let go. A visualization of anything related to love can also be used such as seeing yourself loving your life, the different areas of your life, another in your life, family, friends, co-workers, everyone.

Forgiveness is a powerful process and when done with love will allow for release of energy that you may have had about another person and have carried for years. A "forgiveness meditation" would focus on just that - forgiveness - on anything that comes up that needs to be forgiven. It can be  amazing on how something can be released when recognized as it is coming up in meditation, with love and forgiveness about anything that was said or done. It is a healing process to love those things that are being held in your heart towards any person, political leader, different beliefs, events, or anything that comes up that needs to be loved and forgiven and let go. Another theme would be gratitude. A meditation combining love, forgiveness, and gratitude as the main focus can be powerful and healing.
Meditating in nature can be a powerful experience

Prayers for yourself or others, affirmations, visualizations, and just being still are some of the various ways that we can meditate. It does not need to be structured, or even timed. I use a timer for 24 minutes. Today I did not use a timer at all, and just let go. Sometimes with a timer, I have reset it after I have had so many random thoughts that when they finally settled down, then I started from there.  Being flexible and spontaneous with meditation is always a good balance to the structure and planning of it. 

An Ancient Practice- Yoga and Meditation
The essence of the yoga of meditation is experiencing or acknowledging the oneness or yoga-union of our spirit with the Divine Spirit. It is a celebration of creation happening in the moment, of the eternal love and light that is already here and now, beyond our perception. It is joy, bliss, awakening, and a type of devotion that is unique to you and your relationship to the Divine Spirit. It is an ongoing journey of going deeper into the heart of God. This and many other benefits is why meditation is amazing.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

My Dog Shaman Spoke to Me (after he had passed)

Can animals communicate to us after they have passed?

I met Amy Miller at a pet grieving meeting after our dogs had passed about the same time last

October 2016. She is an expert at subtle communications with animals during life and after they have passed. She published a fascinating and inspiring book about it -  Beyond Companionship - Connecting with Kindred Souls of Animal Companions. After reading that book I was convinced even more that this is possible with Shaman.

This is a story that must be told. It is on my author profile on Amazon and also on a Facebook page that I set up for Shaman some years ago that has accumulated 342 likes!

Some Background

Shaman was the name that just came to me intuitively in Powell's bookstore in Portland Oregon while looking at pet names books. He was a majestic collie with the soul of a wolf. He would howl like a wolf sometimes (as pictured) and it was so cool to hear him do that. I would howl with him (in private not in public) We were together for ten and a half years. He wandered onto a farm at six weeks old and they took him in but needed to give him away after a year as they already had too many dogs. I found him at a Humane Society shelter in Corvallis Oregon with a letter describing his first year. It was love at first sight. He awakened a part of my soul and will always be with me in spirit.

An Amazing Experience
Although he passed on in October 2016, I felt that his spirit is still strong and connected to me. In Feb 2017, while walking on the Bear Creek bike path next to my home, I had an experience that I will never forget. I told myself before I went out for a walk that if I saw any dogs I would ask the owner if they are friendly and if I could say hello. Within fifteen minutes

on the bike path I met a woman who had two Aussies. One of them started to become very friendly and she said that she had never seen her dog Ruby respond like that to a stranger. Then while I was scratching the dog's back, the dog rubbed against my leg and put her head and body halfway through my legs. The woman was amazed and had never seen that before during Ruby's entire life of over ten years. Then it occurred to me later that Shaman's spirit was there because that is exactly what he did when getting a back scratch.

There are so many types of non-verbal communication. Even body language is considered to be a major part of communication, and on the spiritual levels, all possibilities exist for communication. I guess I may not have been receiving them from Shaman or conscious of them, so he showed me through another dog that he was there and is with me in spirit. I am so grateful for his doing that. I'm leaving his photo with me on my Facebook profile. I have a large poster that I made a few years ago with his name on it since I knew that one day it would be a memorial.

Monday, February 27, 2017

The Ancient Redwoods Spoke to Me

“To experience sublime natural beauty is to confront the total inadequacy of language to describe what you see. Words cannot convey the scale of a view that is so stunning it is felt.”
~ Eleanor Catton

On a second journey to the redwood forest at Jedediah Smith State Park in
California, I was shown something that   was so sublime and beautiful that the image of it is embedded in my memory and  my soul.

If you love trees and nature then the Redwoods are a must visit to experience their majesty, beauty, and subtle energies. These are ancient trees, that can reach the height of a thirty story building. Their trunks can be as wide as twenty seven feet. They are ancient in that their age can be as long as two thousand years.

"Awe" is one of the keywords in my book 333 Keywords to Change Your Life. I was in a state of awe during the entire time with the Redwoods but also especially during two experiences.

The first experience was in the early morning. There is a one lane dirt road that goes through the park and if you get there early enough before any other cars or people, you have the experience of being alone with this forest without other human distractions. At one point on the road I had to pull over and just walk towards one particular tree on the side of the road. The sunlight was coming through the upper canopy of the trees as rays of light that seemed like divine light. The experience was like I was in an ancient primeval forest, and I felt the presence of the trees in silence, and some unique energies that I have never felt before that cannot be described in words. It was a stunning experience. 

The second experience happened on the “Boy Scout Trail”, a hike on what has been called one of the most pristine old growth hiking trails on the planet. At one point my attention was drawn to a tree off of the trail. The trunk of the tree had a shape that was a profile of a Native American, and upon seeing it, I could not help but feel a whole range of mixed emotions. It was not carved by human hands, as it was an integrated part of the thick bark that the Redwoods are known for, which also take various shapes with burls and natural
changes. The eyes and eyelids, nose, mouth and chin are all there. It is an amazing display of nature that has a message for anyone who sees it. That message may vary for each person. For me it was in retrospect the deep connections that we have to both ancient trees and ancient humanity, and in this area in particular, it is sacred, and a reminder of the love and respect that we have for the Earth. The ancient Redwoods spoke to me in the deep and profound silence. And I am still listening.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Compassion,Tibetan Mastiff Puppy, and Facebook

Part of my plan to get the word out about my new book , 333 Keywords to Change Your Life, is to take each keyword, add an inspiring quote and then place them in a beautiful photograph with Photoshop.

When I saw this Tibetan Mastiff puppy in my search for photo ideas, it didn't relate directly to compassion, and yet the Dalai Lama is always talking about all of us creating more compassion in the world. So there is a tie in with this amazing looking dog.

I have decided to "adopt" this puppy as my "mascot" for my Facebook page, and if you go there you will see his photo at the top in the cover photo along with my book cover. His name is Rumi.
 Facebook page - @333 Keywords

With all of the chaos going on in the world, I prefer to stay within "the eye of the hurricane" - that still calm center surrounded by the turbulent winds. As a metaphor, it works for me as to how I show up and choose to be with news and world events (see blog - Sacred Activism - Why I Stand in the Eye of the Hurricane). I remind myself to "embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty". Then I see the wisdom in that puppy's face and know how we are all connected.