Show Up and Make Something Good Happen!


MadreTeresaCalcutaconpobres-485x363The other day I attended the funeral of my best friend from childhood’s Mother.  Her name was Carolyn.  She was quite the woman, having an impact on so many lives during her time here on Earth.  Now, when I was young, I looked upon Carolyn with different eyes or at least a different set of values.  The manner in which she approached everyday life appeared, well, kind of calloused and very non-nuturing.  Of course,  that’s coming from her son’s best friend, who was on the outside looking in, but it was always Mark do this, Mark do that….right before we were ready to go out on the boat…Mark, you have to (and a list of 5 things would spout out)…I mean really, it was quite the inconvenience.  You see, as is with most young folks, when the plan didn’t go as expected, well darn it, we didn’t like it.  Let’s just say, the plan rarely worked out the way  we (Mark or I or any other friends that were around for that matter) expected it to if Mrs. Carolyn was around.  Therefore, my opinion of Carolyn at that time was, well, much less than favorable.

You see, the thing I didn’t give any importance to about Carolyn were the things that went on beyond my petty inconveniences.  I mean, I knew she did Meals on Wheels and did things with several other charitable organizations, but that was the extent of it, I knew about it.  Man, but there was so much more.  The list went on and on as I read the obituary the family put together and as I talked to some folks at the funeral.  Not to mention, she cultivated four absolutely spot on kids.  Successful in career, successful in family, darn it, really just successful in life.  Of course, we cannot forget the marriage that she and her husband kept going for so many years, through the thick and the thin, between two very strong-minded folks, a miracle in itself.

Now that I am older, and much, much, much wiser, well, I have been able to venture beyond the cover of this book.  To see Carolyn for what she really was, and that was a beacon of selflessness and compassion.  A woman, with the strength and persistence to always do the right thing, and let others know when they weren’t.  A trait rarely seen today in any part of the world.  A woman whose expectations for the world around her were not to gain her favor, but to enable those she touched to live a better life.  A woman who rarely if ever wavered in the face of adversity.  A woman who lived her life not asking “what’s in it for me” but “how can I make something good happen for another.”   Yes, certainly her delivery could often seem callous, but behind that delivery was a volition filled with only good intention.   Really, someone we could all learn a few lessons from.

So, during the funeral, my friend Mark chose to get up in front of the congregation to speak a little bit about his mom.  He started out with a little humor, but then gave one of the most amazing and inspiring pieces of oratory goodness that I had ever heard.  Its simplicity was the magnificence of its brilliance.  He told everyone (I am paraphrasing here, as I could only wish I had been recording it but this is what i got from it), that the greatness of his mom was very simple and that he wanted to share it with us and that it was going to save us a lot of money.  He said that we didn’t need someone like Tony Robbins, or a therapist and so on to motivate and help us through life.  He said, that we only need to encompass our lives with one simple phrase….SHOW UP and MAKE SOMETHING GOOD HAPPEN (of course, when he says make something good happen, he means for those other than yourself).   Man, he said that, and I nearly lost my breath. Something super simple, yet the most powerful words I had ever heard!   He went on to say that his mom never planned on doing the things she did in life, she didn’t graduate from college and  have some list of things she wanted to do, a bucket list per say.  He said, she would feel drawn to a cause, SHOW UP and MAKE SOMETHING GOOD HAPPEN!  Whether it be a charitable cause or just going over to a person’s  house that was in need and spend an hour or two with them. She would just SHOW UP and MAKE SOMETHING GOOD HAPPEN!  Man, I so wanted to give a standing ovation when he was done, but I guess that didn’t seem apropos for a funeral.

Wow, SHOW UP and MAKE SOMETHING GOOD HAPPEN!  This should be the new slogan for selflessness.  Actually, this should just be the new slogan for Life.  How much more in the moment can you get.  Show up to your experience and just focus on  making something good happen!!  Not focused on the past or the future or the results for that matter…damn it, just SHOW UP and MAKE SOMETHING GOOD HAPPEN.  I mean really, just take a few minutes and think about how this could impact your life in general.  How, in your family, social and career life if you incorporated this way of life,  the moment you open your eyes in the morning until the moment you close your eyes to sleep at night.  Wow, how things could change for the better in all facets of life.

I want to thank my friend Mark for sharing with us his mother’s simple formula for making a difference in the lives of those she touched and in turn making a difference in the world around us!  Such a special gift she has bestowed upon us all! A treasure in fact that I think could change one’s life for the better!   I encourage all of you, find a way each and every day to SHOW UP and MAKE SOMETHING GOOD HAPPEN!  No matter if it is at work, at school, in a social setting or at home, just do it man!!   I start today, as my fingers SHOW UP on this keyboard and are  MAKING SOMETHING GOOD HAPPEN!  Let’s spread it around!! Imagine if we could make a movement for all mankind to SHOW UP and MAKE SOMETHING GOOD HAPPEN!!  Every day…..heck…every moment!!  Yes, I know, quite ambitious….but hey, it can’t be any more simple than this….ya never know!!

Well, I wish much happiness and peace to you all on this journey.  May you find the strength to look beyond your self and find a little selflessness and compassion towards those you touch everyday.  I promise that in turn, you will experience a glimpse of true happiness in life!

Wisdom in the Midst of a Loved One Lost


lossI was reminded today, of a conversation I had long ago, with a very wise individual I had the pleasure of knowing.  It was not too long after my father had passed.  The conversation had such an effect on the way I looked at his passing and life in general, that I thought I would share.

I lost my father not too long after high school.  We had a super tight relationship and I was devastated.  I remember experiencing some of the very deep miserable feelings one has during a time such as this.  One day a very wise friend sat down with me to talk, (i remember this like it was yesterday) really just about things, not necessarily my father.  We were talking about what my plans were for the future, how baseball was going, i was about to transfer schools and we talked about that a bit, and it went on for a while.  Then out of the blue…he stopped, closed his eyes, and said very calmly, “have you noticed during this entire conversation you haven’t said one positive thing?”  I was kind of taken back by this, but it was true and he continued, “you have all these wonderful things going on and in your life, and all I’ve heard was how you are worried, how you are scared, how they cause you problems and misery, how you are not too sure about this or that.”  I sat there silent for a few seconds and started to cry, and of course after a bit, then the conversation about my father ensued and it went on for a little while.  Then again out of the blue, he closed his eyes and said very calmly, “have you noticed during this entire conversation you haven’t said one thing about your father?”  I was confused and again taken back, and he continued, “everything you spoke of was how it affected you, how this has burdened you, how you don’t know what you are going to do, how it’s not fair to you.”  Of course he was right again.

Then he said to me, ” you have an awesome opportunity here, a great and beautiful opportunity.  Your father, although physically gone, lives in you, lives through you, and is given energy by you, whether it be positive or negative.”  I sat thinking and probably looking a bit confused. Then he went on, “every moment you sit feeling sorry for your self, every moment you are negative about the beautiful life you have… well, that flows through you to him, he feels your misery.  Yet, every moment you go out into the world, live your life, enjoy every moment, do your best, have success, work through difficulties, the energy flows the other way.  His energy flows through you, to enjoy the good times, and give you strength to work through the tough times.  To one day watch your children grow.  To see you live a happy life. To see your light shine and live through the love you spread to those around you.  This is your beautiful opportunity, to live a beautiful life, so that he may live through you and your beautiful life…”

Man, such powerful words, such true words.  So, I say to you, if you are going through this sort of time, you have an opportunity here.  A beautiful opportunity.  Make the most of it, not only for yourself, but for all of those around you that you love, and of course, for that loved one that lives within you…that lives through you.

I wish much happiness and peace to you all.

28 Day Meditation Challenge


Hello out there, to all of you engaged in the experiment and to those not as well!  Someone passed along a Facebook link to a 28 Day Meditation Challenge.  So many folks spend so much time making an effort to better their bodies through some sort of physical exercise challenge (especially during this time of the year) , how about putting some energy towards a mental exercise challenge.  Give it a try, it can”t hurt!  If you have any questions about meditation, feel free to contact me or leave a response on this post.  The link is as follows.

http://www.facebook.com/#!/28DayMeditationChallenge

Much Peace and Happiness to you all.

The Dying Art of the Creative Moment


My eyes opened, as the sound of Moonlight Sonata, so eloquently created by a Mr. Ludwig Van Beethoven, calmly gave introduction to a new day.  The shadows of the ceiling fan fluttered as if there were a butterfly, readying itself to land upon the window cill. I turned over to the warmth of my little Pug Ling, as she shook her head and greeted me with a gregarious snort as her imperfectly curled tail tried to follow the wiggle of her back end.  As blurred visions of the grand adventure of epic proportions I experienced before my waking moments, drifted off into the lost Dewey Decimal System of my mind, I came upon a faint moment that struck a conscious vibration of disapproval and even anxiety.  This moment of intensity quickly dispersed as two familiar spheres of green and yellow and brown came into sight, encompassed by a halo of soft light, and the sound of “good morning daddy”  that reverberated a flow of the most enlightening vibration of peace and happiness, nourishing every cell in my body, from this little light of my life, as if she were the sun giving life to the avocado tree outside the window.  I reached out to embrace this little light of my life, Luciana her name, the Italian equivalent for light, so appropriate, so true to life, and she expressed a whimsical  ahmmm which let me know that all was good in the world and that she was now ready for her day!

Talk about being in the moment!  Its amazing the detail that comes into focus during an experience such as this.  Ah, the creative process, what an amazing tool, an amazing gift, an amazing discovery.  Simple really, just allowing oneself to be completely in the moment and create, not bound by any future or past limitation….this is where the masterpiece is, well, created!  Likely, why it is the starving artist that so often is the true creator of such bliss.  For to create for the purpose of gaining favor or income for that matter, will always taint the process.  Creativity is a flow, a flow of the sum of all that is, and then an attachment to something in that flow….ah….a creation is born.  Then how, can i give full attention to this attachment if I am anywhere other than in the moment?  Ah, I cannot, therefore my creation is distorted by its insignificance.

Writer’s block for example, what is writers block?  Most of the time, i think it is due to the desire to create.  Sounds crazy, right?  Maybe not,.  For the creative process is being bound by not the desire to create, but for that entity, that attainment, that goal in the future that has elicited this desire to create….unfortunately no longer allowing the artist to be completely in the moment.  Maybe why we see the creative process becoming a relic, a cyclical copy of what has been.  As the creative process has been hijacked by the almighty dollar.

When I write, i am in the moment , for if I am not, i no longer have anything creative to say.  For just as creativity, wisdom is only found in the moment.  It is the essence of the flow, it is the constant that can be observed, only in the moment.  Not bound by the noise beyond the flow.  Find the flow my friends, embrace it, live it, be it……and CREATE!!!!

Theory of Limitation….the bridge between God and Science


A friend shared this quote today from Mr. Einstein…”A human being is a part of the whole, called by us “Universe,” a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feelings as something separate from the rest—a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. The striving to free oneself from this delusion is the one issue of true religion. Not to nourish it but to try to overcome it is the way to reach the attainable measure of peace of mind.”

We often refer to Mr. Einstein as brilliant, a genious, yet even more impressive was his level of wisdom.  This illustrated of course in this quote, but specifically for the purpose of this post,  “the universe, a part limited in time and space.”  Ah, limitation,  something I have been thinking a lot about lately.   A few weeks ago while sitting in meditation,  I became attached to a thought that arose (yes I know, the antithesis of meditation).  This thought struck a very deep chord withiin this very fickle mind of mine.  It produced an idea, a concept, of an observable description of, well, existence.  How conceited I thought, but its simplicity illicited further exploration, as I contemplated, “imagine if one could bridge the gap between science and God, the ramifications….would it lead to a more peaceful existence for the inhabitants of this earth, would the inhabitants even want to know?”

infinityI have often spoke of the description I use when posed the question “What is God?”.  My thoughts on the entity referred to as God…., ” the absence of limitation.”  During this time of meditation, this thought came up, followed by a thought about Nirvana, Nibbana, (however you care to say it,)  which literally is the complete cessation of attachment….or without any limitation.  Of course, if these things are the essence of no limitation, then life, existence and all things contained in its illusion are the opposite, or limitation.

I thought back to the basic idea of the beginning of this illusion we call existance.  Science describes it as the “big bang.”  The formation of the universe, starting from the size of a pin hole so eloquently defined as singularity.  Of course, we can thank Mr. Einstein’s Theory of Relativity for expanding on this for us.   I then progressed to the concept of the black holes.  What are black holes?  The description I use is that they are formed at the point of collapse of a star, and take on the characteristics of …well…a drain, pulling all things that surround it, into its void.  I have read a little of Stephen Hawking’s ideas on Black Holes, originally he thought that all information that was taken into a black hole was lost to nothingness, but recently he has come to the “conclusion” that the information that goes into black holes, traverse into an alternate universe such as those discussed in quantum physics..(I promise this is as complicated as this post will get with respect to science references.)  He has also stated that black holes can form “within the individual”  as well.  Pretty heavy, eh?2013-black-hole-d-full-hd-wallpaper

Alright, so where am i going with all of this?  Remember my thoughts on limitation?  Well, first let go of all pre- concieved notions or ideas of existance.  Go beyond all concept of universe.  Now, draw a picture in your mind of an immense sphere of energy, (maybe what you would picture as the perverbial light at the end of the tunnel), spinning with an eternal flow.  Yes, my thought is that this sphere of pure energy is that which we perceive and label as “God” or “heaven”.

So, now picture in your mind, some form of limitation arising within the flow.  The limitation creates a blockage in an infinitely small area of this sphere of energy.  A pin hole, yes a singularity.

5772919-landscape-with-river-and-fallen-tree-in-the-forestNow picture a river, a steadily flowing river.  Within this river, a large tree falls and creates a diverge in the river.  Initially the river continues on like normal.  Yet, through the years this diverge created by the tree, slowly increases in scope as the river’s flow of water drills at the blockage created by this tree, this “limitation” of the flow of water.  Eventually some level of tributary is created, that flows parallel along the main river.

Now, back to our sphere of energy, picture our infinitely small pin hole of limitation .  As our sphere of energy continues its flow, at this point of limitation, the flow of energy keeps grinding into this blockage until, BOOM! “big bang”.  A new tributary is created, and voila, the birth of a universe.

big bangSo, we now have the birth of a “universe”.  What then defines this new, infant universe?  The charachteristics of the limitation that caused the whole thing to happen.  Therefore, all things, this universe, this existance,  are “created” ultimately by the basic charachteristics of that initial limitation..

Now, let’s go back to the the river and its new tributary.  As is with all tributaries, there are areas that are formed between the river and the tributary, whether small or large, underground or above ground, that connect the two.  Some happen immediately, some take years to form, yet the water flow of the tributary, eventually flows back to the river from the various voids.

So, picture this new “universe of limitation” as it receives its constant flow of energy from the point where the “big bang” was initiated, the singularity.   The flow of energy defined by the initial limitation, creating the observed reality.  Considering the reality of our own universe, picture what we define as “black holes”, solar systems, and galaxies.  These would be the “voids” that connect the universe (tributary, small river)  to the “sphere of energy” (main river).

sunIn the solar system, the sun, like a big plug, in the drain of the black hole. Once the sun can no longer sustain its viability or resist the pull back into the sphere of energy, it falls into the drain back into the sphere of energy (along with all that’s around it.).  That would kind of explain the cyclical nature of solar systems, or from whence the gravitational sequence is initiated.

Now, on a personal level.  As I have talked about before, what exactly defines life, as we experience it?  Really, it is broken down into two concepts, fear and desire, (or whatever description of the two you choose to hold onto.)  If you observe the true nature of reaction to experience, they are defined by either of these two…limitations.

The concept of reaching nirvana, is ultimately being able to observe this reality, moment to moment, and have complete objectivity…equinimity..to the experience.  In other words, the complete eradication of the fears and desires that define the individual. Hence, to train oneself to not react to the experience that elicits the feeling of fear…the feeling of desire.  Through this, you methodically let go of attachment to this illusion, by the observation that it is the fearful or desirable reaction that lay the framework for ones definable self.

prayerNow, with respect to God and heaven (i will reference christianity here, as this is my most familiar), although I am certain much of the magnificent wisdom that flowed from the mouth of Jesus has been lost to agenda and dogma, one thing has stuck through the years, certainly misused and misinterpreted, but one word, “FAITH”.   What does this word mean?  Ultimately, let go of your fears.  Let go of your desires.  Accept them, welcome them, observe them and then let them go.  Have faith that God will handle them for you, and then, you will enter the Kingdom of Heaven .  Back from whence, ultimately, we came…(minus all of those limitations.)

I think this describes the idea of a “black hole” within the individual.  Once all limitations are “let go” or the awareness of the illusion of “limitation” is observed and attachment to these things are let go, we go on the wild ride down the drain, into the wild rideinfinite…well…until the next limitation bubbles up in our little sphere of energy…and then..BANG….Wow….what a ride!!!

Is this a scientifically provable theory?  I have no idea,  for my proficiency in physics is limited.   What I do know is that ,it is an observable theory, for through the training, (or un-training) of the mind, one can experience the complete cessation of attachment.  The rest can be deduced from the idea of limitation, hence my reason for calling it the Theory of Limitation.  I guess I will have to talk to a physicist one day about the theory and see. (I must admit though, it would make for a great sci-fi film!)

lossIf nothing else, use this as a guide, a motivation, to limit the limitations in your life.  For it can and will give you a glimpse of true peace…true happiness…and who knows….maybe we can somehow bridge that gap between science and spirituality….and maybe, just maybe…the world will live as one!!!

So you wanna know about meditation….eh??


ImageLast week I wrote about an experience I had during meditation, and of course this produced a couple of messages asking about meditation.  What technique I practiced?  How does one get the same experience I described?  Is there one meditation better than the other?  We human beings are such funny animals, often confused with the concept of simplicity and have this funny little way of creating complexity out of it.

When I first started my quest for meditation, I had many of the same questions and spent so much time analyzing the different practices, different sitting positions, different sitting areas, you name it…I analyzed it!  Of course, I eventually realized that this is my nature, but that discussion is for another day!  Well, finallly after going through all of the analization process, I picked a particular discipline and dove in! (I’m not going to get into specifics, as to not lay influence, one must find their own path.  If you truly would like to know, send me a message and I will happily go into it further.)  I will say, it was one of the most difficult things that I have done in my life, but of course one of , if not the most important as well!  As I have mentioned before, it is the most important tool that I have, as I meander through this river of life!

So you wanna know about meditation…eh???  It is very simple, in fact its the backbone of this experiement I have been talking about!  It is the objective observation of your point of focus, moment to moment.  No, really, its that simple, but as I mentioned above, we are very complex animals, whose minds, well,  just don’t like simplicity…or atleast fight it, tooth and nail!!  You see, meditation is the retraining of the ole noggin.  Well, the ole noggin, its kinda fond of those old habits of the mind (some refer to that as the ego) and isn’t real interested in this retraining!  So, well, its a gonna fight ya!   But rest assured, persistance and patience will prevail!  Just like a child, persistance and patience will always give better long term results!

So, the objective observation of your point of focus, moment to moment.  Hmm, what exactly does that mean?  There are many forms of meditation, in fact I am pretty sure most reading this post have engaged in some sort of meditation at one point or another.  There are those that do mantra (chants), those that focus on an object, those that focus on bodily sensations, those that focus on breath, those that focus on sound.  So, what do all of these have in common?  Well, there is a point of focus.  So, how about prayer?  How about physically working out?  How about playing a video game?  How about a crossword?  How about doing a painting?  How about working on a physics problem?  These are all things that one often becomes completely absorbed, completely focused in the moment, and in my opinion are all forms of meditation.

Now, the real tricky part, the objective observation, becoming third person, really…just being.  Where one is able to allow things (feelings, thoughts, fears, desires)  beyond that point of focus, to materialize, quikly observe them as they materialize, and be completely objective towards them, accept them for what they are and really allow them to eventually pass, all the time keeping the attention on that point of focus!

Yes, your mind will wander!  Yes, you will give more attention to those thoughts rushing through your head!  Yes you will react to that funny feeling in your leg, or that itch on your arm!  That is where the objectivity is most critical!  That is where going, okay, I lost focus on my point of focus for a bit, no big deal (get used to saying no big deal to yourself), and reset and begin your meditation again!  Little by little, with great patience and persistence, you will start to experience the beauty in retraining that ole noggin of yours!  For this is the immediate goal, retrain the mind to be focused, moment to moment!  Eventually you will observe your true nature, and it will be easier and easier to accept it for what it is, and when this happens you will see the retraining process become easier and easier.

So, why is it that I am retraining?  Do an experiment on yourself and I promise you will understand why!  Although our greatest asset in the creation of our masterpiece, the mind, it is also our primary source of misery, really our only source, our greatest enemy!  Throwing anchors of fear in the past and shooting arrows of desire to the future (or vise verse), not allowing us to experience the only true reality of what is going on moment to moment!  So picture each one of those anchors and arrows with a big rope attached and the other end hooked to you!  Yow-ch, sounds pretty painful!  The beauty of retraining the ole noggin, is that it gives us the opportunity to let go of those ropes, pop those hooks, accept those arrows and anchors for what they are, and just let go of those ropes that are attached to them with the power of objectivity, the power of…well…”no big deal”!  Understand, you will throw those anchors and shoot those arrows again!  But, now you have gathered this beautiful tool of meditation, of awareness, of retraining the ole noggin and maybe you won’t throw or shoot them as often, or maybe you will not hold onto the ropes as long as you once did!

This has been my observation of meditation.  I hope it helps in some way.   I wish you all strength, patience and persistence on your journey through this beautiful river of life, but most of all I wish you much peace and much happiness!

The Essence of Life…Your Masterpiece!!!!


I posted a comment on Facebook yesterday in response to, “If only science and reason were easier to get people to believe in than flying men, a kingdom in the sky, ..virgins…and such..”.  My response, I think may have been taken a bit out of context, but it went something like this.. “Imagination is the mother of creation!!!  Desire and fear are her tools!!!  The human mind is her soil!!  And Chaos is her bloom!!!.”

Since embarking on this journey of self-realization and experiment of self observation, I have been fortunate enough to see things for what they are and use this information to better meander the path I follow.  Many times, the observations made are completely contrary to the reality I understood…I lived.. at one time or another.  The truth is, this beautiful thing we call life, is very much like a never-ending canvas, to use to create our own little…or grand…(depending on one’s nature)….masterpiece.

Imagination, most certainly is, the mother of creation.  For it is that imagination, which allows our energy, our true nature, to flow upon the canvas.  Fear and Desire are at the very root of our soul…..our mind….and these are the tools that are used to paint upon this glorious canvas.   For it is the essence of these two words that give color to the medium we choose for our masterpiece.  They are the ebb and flow of every stroke that is made!  This magnificent planet of ours, universe for that matter, so completely perfect, is ripe to offer the artist an unlimited palette of sensory experience, that the possibilities are limitless.

The mind is her soil, ah, this beautiful garden of creativity, so fertile with the descriptive that define one’s footprint.  The blueprint for which her tools are used.  Transforming with every moment, with every reaction to the plethora of sensory experience presented.

Chaos is her bloom.  As formally defined… Behavior so unpredictable as to appear random, owing to great sensitivity to small changes in conditions… this work of wonder, this masterpiece…with the illusion of control…has quite the opposite.  For as any true artist knows, creativity flows from the depths of the mind, of the soul, of nothingness…with reckless abandon…with chaos…to form the most randomly beautiful bloom from the seed once planted in the soil.

So I say to he, that lies waste to the flying men, kingdom in the sky…virgins…and such… Wait just a minute!  For the day may come that science and imagination come to the realization that they really are one!! For one day, they will meet upon the understanding that it is one thing that separates, as well as combines the two, and that is limitation.  For it is limitation that is the essence of fear and desire and to get beyond this limitation is to experience that for which many call God.  For it is this essence, this limitless entity that provides the canvas to create ones masterpiece.  It is that constant flow of energy in the river of life and beyond.

Allow this energy to flow through you.  Make proper use of the tools, with as fertile a mind as possible. Let the creativity of your imagination cultivate and bloom into a masterpiece…bursting with the vibrance that defines the one and only you!!!  But most of all…smile…and BE HAPPY! (or not..your choice!)