The Healing of Politics - A New Vision and a New "Vibe"

Really? The healing of politics? Impossible? Hard to believe? So was the election. Read on.


I think it needs to be put out there so I decided to write this from a perspective of inspiration and healing, not any particular political position.

What if we witnessed the greatest breakthrough in political history?
What Would Mark Twain Say?




This is actually not an authentic quote from Mark Twain. However let's use this quote anyway and apply it to the politics of today. Mark Twain had quotes about politics. Mainly humor and satire. Those have their place.

Obviously, politics may never be healed in the sense that everyone agrees on everything exactly the same way. However, what the vision is for the purpose of this blog is that everyone who is a decision maker agrees to work together with compromise and negotiation with a goal to create one of the most surprising and amazing moments in our political history. Yes. Imagine that.

Imagine what would happen when it becomes "cool" for both sides (Congress, Executive branch) to start working together. The news and media focus starts to shift from what's wrong to "look at what is being done to make things right". The public consensus starts to warm up to the idea. Hard to believe? So was the election. 

The Vibe Shifts to a New Paradigm
The vision is that the "vibe" shifts and everyone who represents us (Congress, White House) starts working together through compromise to create positive changes for our country. The voice of the American people who they represent start encouraging it. This starts happening now, not four years from now. As Mark Twain reminds us, "life is short, break the rules". The vision for this is the realization that the "same old same old" style of polarization and opposition (rules) will not work for getting things done for those represented.  "Life is short". Who wants to wait four years? Let's break those "rules" now! Again, in the December 2012 Huffington Post article "Healing America's Political Divide", the ideas were put forth for this. That was four years ago and here we are today, with the same challenge. Is it time to be open minded about a shift? A new paradigm? A breakthrough?

"It’s going to be difficult, but not impossible. Instead of demonizing each other, Haidt’s view is that we need to make the effort to understand and respect each other’s views even if we disagree. That doesn’t mean capitulating. It’s called being open-minded." - Huffington Post 2012.

"Forgive Quickly, Kiss Slowly, and Love Truly"
Then we have the next part of the "quote" from Mark Twain that when applied to politics may be the most healing of all. The vision of "forgive quickly, kiss slowly, and love truly" is when the past is forgiven, freeing up a huge amount of energy to create positive changes together through compromise. Then the metaphor of "kiss slowly and love truly" applies to the what the healing of the politics would look like metaphorically as it shifts from division and stalemate to working together for positive change. Imagine that. Working together for positive change.

The process becomes something that once started, takes on a life of its own, and everyone (well almost) in the process loves the new dynamic, and the new vibe. The release of positive energy into the process of compromise and getting things done is amazing. The whole country gets excited over the "new vibe". Songs are written about it. History is made. Everyone wins. The world changes.

The Big Changes Coming May Take a Few Years

"What this means is that the current global frustration, cynicism, and despondency over current conditions is likely to remain present until real innovation, novelty, and the pursuit of unity associated with newness and a new era get markedly underway at the start of the next decade. However, that doesn't mean that the awareness and demand of necessary changes to be made cannot start before then." - Ray Merriman, 2017 Astrological Forecast

However the stars line up, there is always great resistance to change, and that may continue to grow until a point where the demands for change outweighs the resistance and a major reset starts to take place. For example, if nothing is done to make positive changes in our country for the next three years due to a stalemate in Congress, and the media's negative focus, the forces for change may create the opportunity for new leaders, new systems, new styles of government, and new economic models, not just in the U.S. but worldwide. Holding a positive vision for positive change for three years is the challenge if needed, even if we want it to happen now.  Imagine the media focusing on positive changes that are happening. For three years. 


The Unspoken Keyword for 2017
The vision is that inspiration becomes the unspoken keyword for politics in 2017 and beyond. Just like innovation in business creates new openings and solutions, inspiration and innovation in politics creates a new opening for positive negotiation and a compromised and fair results-driven agenda.

Imagine that if this kind of paradigm shift started to happen, what the results would be. Imagine one of the most amazing positive moments in political history happening and everyone getting credit for it, not just one person or party.

This is just a vision. An idea. What is your vision? What do you want to see happen? Maybe we can all collectively create something that would not only happen here in the U.S. but have ripples across the world with other countries.

"You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one" - John Lennon , Imagine

For similar perspectives, see the blogs:

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

Inspiration - The Keyword for 2017 


notes/ resources etc
In December 2012 the Huffington Post published an article "Healing America's Political Divide". That was five years ago and here we are today...are they discussing it now?

Yes, sort of...after the election...11/21/16 Three Ways to Heal a Divided Trump America
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jeff-singh/3-ways-to-heal-a-divided-_b_13069740.html

March 14 2017 - Changing How We Heal Political Divisions Just Might Help Us Heal Them
- Our Democracy may Depend on It
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/political-science-research-michael-neblo_us_58c1d1e1e4b0ed71826b5854
     








Stream of Consciousness and Dancing in Love

“Dance when you’re broken open. Dance if you’ve torn the bandage off. Dance in the middle of the fighting. Dance in your blood. Dance when you’re perfectly free.” ~ Rumi
Where is the time for those special moments of transcendence, deep joy, meditation, prayer, and reflection? Why are special things like reading a book hard to fit into our schedule? A stream of consciousness, of thoughts, words, feelings, and reflections...


It's like we need to to fit it in as we are so used to multi-tasking, ear buds, looking at cell phones, browsing, texting, interruptions, watching TV or YouTube, avoiding Facebook spam, and so many thoughts are streaming through our heads like a torrent of cascading feeder creeks into a waterfall of distorted moments of what we think is reality, felt in our minds, seeping into our bones, bleeding from our hearts that may have been shut down momentarily just to survive the challenge of daily life and yet behind all of this, or in between, or in full conscious mindfulness we see the realities of our culture, our programming, our social media jargon, our ways of communicating, the same old same old stories but what about our real story, the life that we have lived, the story that we thought defined and created us as someone else's story so that now we are living it, carrying our past with us, maybe like baggage or maybe like a freight train full of unnecessary memories, experiences, resentments, that we have not let go of....yet....and then we consciously recreate our story, we process, we meditate, we let go, attend a workshop, get therapy, see a guru or a therapist, exercise, talk it out in meetings or to Divine Spirit, or to ourselves in the middle of the night, or in Nature, at least on the surface like an iceberg that may melt at any moment and then reveal the depths of its underside holding us afloat in the deep waters of our soul, which is beyond time and yet contained within it and we stand in the moments of eternity when we start to see clearly as if everything is transparent, reality behind the illusions, and then joy and bliss of the Divine Spirit within revealing to us in or out of meditation the subtle, sublime, sensual, and beautiful moments that we cherish no matter what happens now and forever and our hearts are opened even wider and then we are dancing in love with the Divine Spirit every day.
- David Lawrence Brown

Living in the Question - A Liquid Elixir of Life ?


The Elusive Elixir of Life

The elusive elixir of life concept has a history in ancient traditions, especially in China and India, where legends and scriptures over thousands of years described various herbs and other substances that would have a healing effect or increase the longevity of life, or even bestow eternal life. The holy grail is also an example of a sacred elixir that grants eternal life. Using the word "liquid" as an acronym, we can explore how living in the question is one form of a spiritual "elixir of life". L-i-q-u-i-d refers to living in the question under the influence of the Divine. 

If You Were a Young Poet

If you were a young poet and you received a letter from your mentor that encouraged you to live in the question rather than the answer, how would you respond?

When we are younger in life it seems that we are seeking answers to all the questions that we have about life. It's a normal part of learning. It's interesting that the search for answers becomes a lifelong process as we change and age and may seek to experience life on a deeper level. The self-help industry has boomed because of this. There's always a new book, another event, workshop, or podcast to help us with answers, or to ask new questions. Are we are all like young poets when we live in the question?

Is There Secret Wisdom Contained in the Question?

Is there is a secret contained in the question that has all possibilities of the answer? Could the answer sometimes be framed in the shapes of other questions? The Zen masters knew this. The wise use of questions would cause the mind of the student to leap outside of the box of intellectual understanding. The parables and riddles and use of questions in the Jewish tradition and also by the master Jesus of Nazareth are also excellent examples. Many traditions recognize this as a way of sharing wisdom.

Living in the Question Now

Questions can be both empowering and frustrating. It depends on who is asking, and what the response is. Living in the question is being open to all possibilities. Questioning something out of criticism or doubt is a whole different vibe. The concept of living in the question was referred to in a letter to a student by Rainer Maria Rilke, a mystic and renowned German poet:

“Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves, like locked rooms and like books that are now written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer.” ― Rainer Maria Rilke , Letters to a Young Poet

Rilke encourages the young poet to "live the questions now", and not seek the answers. To love the questions even though the answers may not be forthcoming. 

Is Living in the Question an Invitation to View Life as a Young Poet?
This may be a good idea to add into our "toolbox" or approach to how we live our life here and now. By "living in the question" we don't need to know all the answers, and it leaves the question open- ended for more insights and possible deeper meanings when we are ready to receive them. The "answers" may also come as insights, aha moments, or subtle openings of wisdom within our heart and mind. Is living in the question an invitation to view life as a young poet?

By "living in the question", we can experience a deeper hidden knowledge or wisdom that may be experienced as an inner knowing, or  a state of consciousness or being that cannot be defined by words as answers.   

Although there are sophisticated methods and systems that use questions such as the Socratic Method, a simple approach is to always be open about new possibilities with whatever information we receive, knowing that there are many possibilities of the information that may not have been revealed yet.  

We have access to vast amounts of information - more than ever before in history - with the internet,  websites, YouTube, podcasts, seminars, workshops, books and blogs. It is easy to take all the information that we have on a topic and set limits on it as if we know enough about it. 

The concept of "living in the question" is to be open about the information that we receive. To know that there are possible new insights, and a new awareness of deeper understanding. It can be a refreshing new perspective and experience compared to "living in the answer". If we are open to a Divine Spirit within life then is it possible that questions help to create an opening to receive in ways beyond our own control?

LIQUID is an acronym for Living In the Question Under the Influence of the Divine. Could living in the question be one of the many sacred liquid elixirs of life?


Initiation - A Keyword for Sacred Experience

"One of the more subtle and profound initiations is not conducted by people, but by a Divine Spirit in which we can be transformed, renewed, reborn, or energized into a new level of knowledge and experience. This can happen outside of any organized religion, as a mystical experience, to anyone at any time. Dogma and authoritative belief systems are not required."
~ 333 Keywords to Change Your Life - "Initiate"

What is a Sacred Initiation?

The traditional reference of a formal initiation is to mark a rite of passage, by admission to a group or organization. Sometimes a reference to birth and death are used to describe dying to the old self and being reborn. Examples include baptism, bar mitzvah, secret vows, ceremonies, physical challenges to overcome, or a realization of the quest to drink from the metaphorical cup of the Holy Grail. Commonly there is a teacher/student, guru/disciple or Master/initiate relationship with a ceremony or ritual. A sacred initiation is not formal. An example is an "informal" baptism by the Divine Spirit compared to a ritual baptism by water. 

"The wind blows where it chooses, and you hear the sound of it, but you do not know where it comes from or where it goes. So it is with everyone who is born of the Spirit.” - John 3:8

A sacred initiation is a spiritual experience that seems to help you cross a threshold, and changes your life in some way. This can happen without a human intermediary, through acts of a Divine Spirit. In this type of informal initiation, we can be transformed, renewed, reborn, or energized into a new level of knowledge and experience. 

When Does an Initiation Happen?
Anything can be a catalyst or trigger for an initiation experience. It does not need to be a formal ceremony or ritual, although those have evolved to give external symbolism and reverence to represent or affirm an internal or external change in life. It can also be something that seems "normal" at the time but in retrospect it may be seen as an initiation as a result of what happened in consciousness. It can happen at any time or place.

Can a book can be a catalyst for a sacred initiation?

At age eighteen, a few years before I had a sacred puja ceremony initiation experience, I was given the book Autobiography of a Yogi by Paramahansa Yogananda and just reading it was a dramatic  experience for me. It had the effect of taking my very limited consciousness and awareness of spiritual realities to a whole new level. I looked at life differently after that, inspired by the possibilities of learning and having deeper levels of experience. It was like a sacred initiation as it was the beginning of a spiritual journey that continues onward and upward. On this journey I have had different types of initiations, and they continue occasionally to this day. Writing is a form of initiation, when a threshold is crossed and new ideas or words come into the mind to create, express, and share with others, inspired by a muse or Divine Spirit.

May the Divine Spirit be like a wind or breeze in our life, even though we do not know where or when it may happen. And as initiates, may it bless our soul, spirit, and consciousness with an initiation as a sacred experience. Are you ready?

~ David Lawrence Brown



A Mandala of Life - Changing the Future Now


The greatest discovery of all time is that a person can change his future by merely changing his attitude.” ~ Oprah Winfrey

The mandala is an archetypal image whose occurrence is attested throughout the ages. It signifies the wholeness of the Self. This circular image represents the wholeness of the psychic ground or, to put it in mythic terms, the divinity incarnate in man… I saw that everything, all paths I had been following, all steps I had taken, were leading back to a single point — namely, to the mid-point. It became increasingly plain to me that the mandala is the center. It is the exponent of all paths. It is the path to the center, to individuation. I knew that in finding the mandala as an expression of the self I had attained what was for me the ultimate.” ~ Carl Jung

An interesting idea to reflect on is that we are living now in the future of yesterday.
A mandala represents the sacred
 geometry in all creation

We made decisions, created plans, worked on issues, removed limitations in our beliefs for change, maybe moved to a new location or changed jobs, and whatever else to be here now. This also applies collectively.

What are we doing now to create or change the coming weeks, months and years in our life?

In our world?

The following is an excerpt from the keyword "future" in the book 333 Keywords to Change Your Life.    

Future as a Keyword for Positive Change
"The invitation of the keyword “Future” is to consider if our present life was the result of our previous and present thoughts, desires, and emotions. What if the programming of advertising, culture, limiting beliefs, and negative emotional experiences in the past affected our future then – and we are living it now? What have we already cleared? How can we change our future more powerfully than we previously thought?

What if by using faith, belief, affirmations, visualizations, meditations, a positive attitude, and a wide range of resources you could neutralize or delete past programming and transform your life today and in the future? What if you started to see results in the future – one week from now? One month? One year? For the rest of your life?" (1)

Changing Our Future Collectively
This also applies collectively. How are we creating our future by our collective thoughts, ideas, beliefs, and views? With all of the turbulence of news and views in the past year and ongoing this seems to be relevant. Peace in our lifetime is a beautiful goal. A vision of a world without war? Why not? End world hunger? Yes. Sustainable growth? yes. Biotechnology and stem cell research? yes. Innovation in solving global challenges? Yes! 1977 was forty years ago. Back then organic was a fringe idea. Now it is mainstream. Imagine an amazing world forty years from now. Does fear get in the way? Maybe we can replace that with love. Love of the earth. Love of the Divine Spirit. Love of others. Love of our self and all living things. And love of the future possibilities for humanity. 

Our love and our life can be like a mandala. We create patterns of thoughts and feelings. May these patterns be aligned with the Divine Spirit and sacred geometry of all creation. And so it is. Amen.


(1) Brown, David Lawrence (2017-01-27). 333 Keywords to Change Your Life (Kindle Locations 2960-2964). David Lawrence Brown. Kindle Edition. 

Why 333 Keywords?



People often ask why there are 333 keywords in the book that I wrote and self-published. It's an interesting story, and not as unique as I had thought. Many people see different number combinations on a regular basis. It's a form of synchronicity as well as a mystery.

For about fifteen years I have seen the number 333 on a regular, spontaneous basis. I know, it's not something that is your usual event during any given day or night. Many times I have woken up and looked at the clock and it is exactly 3:33 am. It took me a while to get used to it as a regular occurrence. It also has has shown up in a variety of ways over the years. My driver's license, the three digit CSV code on the back of my credit card, the room capacity at a P.F. Chang's, car license plates, gas prices, a Starbucks receipt, the time of text messages, are a few examples.

If you Google it, there are different interpretations of what 333 means. Doreen Virtue says that the true meaning of 333 "refers to the Trinity, and means that you are receiving divine protection, help, and guidance....if you are seeing a lot of 3's then it is an Angel Number sign." It is also considered a sacred number in numerology, has a geometry of three triangles and was mentioned in the writings of Pythagoras.

I can live in the question about the various meanings, and accept it as well as other possibilities that are not yet known. Another interpretation is that it is a message that I need to keep all three parts of my being in balance; mind, body and spirit. I'm working on it.

Since I am also fascinated with words, writing, and books, I thought at one point if I could find 333 words in the dictionary that could relate to making positive changes in life, then maybe a book would come out of it. And it did. Having a background in Internet marketing, I decided to use the term keywords. For each keyword in the book, there is an inspiring quote, an expanded definition, an affirmation, a one minute meditation, and three questions to provide ideas for journaling about the keyword or thinking about how it is integrated into your life. The book is 612 pages long.

The book has had several reviews and one in particular was done by a professional book reviewer, Tim Larison, quoted below. The price is $3.33. That just seemed to be the right amount for the Kindle edition on Amazon. There is also a free "Look Inside" feature.
Amazon Link: 333 Keywords to Change Your Life

"I received a complementary copy of this book for review purposes. The opinions are completely my own based on my experience.

“Words and affirmations can change your life,” writes David Lawrence Brown in his book 333 Keywords to Change Your Life. “Words that are positive in themselves or that elicit positive thoughts, memories, and experiences are important to add into our ‘self-talk,’ thoughts, goals, and communications with others.” For anyone who values the power of affirmations, Brown has created a wonderful resource to enhance your own spiritual growth.

Each of the “333 keywords” is a word you might think about on any given day. Say you are holding a grudge against someone and you realize forgiveness can get you out of your funk. Look up “forgiveness” in 333 Keywords and you’ll find a quote related to forgiveness (“The weak can never forgive. Forgiveness is the attribute of the strong,” – Mahatma Gandhi). You’ll find a three paragraph description of what forgiveness is all about, you’ll find a forgiveness affirmation, a one minute meditation related to forgiveness, and a writing exercise to help you through your own forgiveness process. Brown gives a similar treatment to his 332 other key words, with short one or two page treatments on words from Abundance to Yoga.

I was impressed with the amount of research that went into 333 Keywords. From my twitter feed you know I love inspirational quotes, and the quote associated with each key word is worth the price of the book alone. I also found the affirmations powerful, the meditations useful, and the writing exercises helpful for each key word.

333 Keywords is best used as a reference book, to take off the shelf when you need help in a particular area of your life. Or read a one word treatment each day as part of your spiritual practice. 333 Keywords is not a book to be rushed through – rather savor each word and the wisdom Brown imparts related to that word.

“Everyone has their own journey in life and we are blessed with the freedom of choice as to how we want to live,” the author writes. “Whatever we need to change, or work on, or seek improvement in, affirmations and keywords can help us on the journey.” Brown’s 333 Keywords will certainly aid in my spiritual journey – it has a prominent place on my bookshelf and I will refer to it often." - Tim Larison , Amazon Review 




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. 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

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 500px.com 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 

#inspiration

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?

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. Meditation can be amazing, and can add depth and a variety of benefits to those on a spiritual journey.


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! https://www.facebook.com/MyDogShaman

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.

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.






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.



Launching a New Year, a New Book, and a New Life






The term "reborn" may have a religious context, and there is nothing wrong with that. I like the description of being reborn in the Divine Spirit since that can also transcend religion as well as be a part of it. No one person or organized religion can exclusively define someones experience of being reborn and Lady Gaga nails it when she states that it can be a choice as well as an unexpected gift of grace from the Divine Spirit.

As we start this New Year, already five weeks in, I celebrate launching a new book - 333 Keywords to Change Your Life, self published on Amazon. I also just launched this new blog to share some thoughts and write and rant and shout out and inspire and live in the question and just let loose with whatever words and thoughts stream through.

We are our own sanctuary in that we can create our own sacred space in our home, our minds, our hearts and our soul. During meditation I feel like I am in a sanctuary of the spirit, and it is a very special time of the day.  In fact I am going into meditation right after posting this.

It is 3:44pm, Wednesday, Feb 8 2017. Time to visit a sanctuary.