Monday, January 15, 2018

Tortoise helps friend who's flipped over


This Video Was Originally Sent by the late Elizabeth Cutler!

Saturday, January 13, 2018

The TWELVE STAGES of the HUMAN LIFE CYCLE


The Twelve Stages of the Human Life Cycle

Which stage of life is the most important?   Some might claim that infancy is the key stage, when a baby’s brain is wide open to new experiences that will influence all the rest of its later life. Others might argue that it’s adolescence or young adulthood, when physical health is at its peak.  Many cultures around the world value late adulthood more than any other, arguing that it is at this stage that the human being has finally acquired the wisdom necessary to guide others.  Who is right?  The truth of the matter is that every stage of life is equally significant and necessary for the welfare of humanity.  In my book The Human Odyssey: Navigating the Twelve Stages of Life, I’ve written that each stage of life has its own unique “gift” to contribute to the world.  We need to value each one of these gifts if we are to truly support the deepest needs of human life.  Here are what I call the twelve gifts of the human life cycle:
  1. Prebirth:  Potential – The child who has not yet been born could become anything – a Michaelangelo, a Shakespeare, a Martin Luther King – and thus holds for all of humanity the principle of what we all may yet become in our lives.
  2. Birth:  Hope – When a child is born, it instills in its parents and other caregivers a sense of optimism; a sense that this new life may bring something new and special into the world.  Hence, the newborn represents the sense of hope that we all nourish inside of ourselves to make the world a better place.
  3. Infancy (Ages 0-3):   Vitality – The infant is a vibrant and seemingly unlimited source of energy.  Babies thus represent the inner dynamo of humanity, ever fueling the fires of the human life cycle with new channels of psychic power.
  4. Early Childhood (Ages 3-6):  Playfulness – When young children play, they recreate the world anew.  They take what is and combine it with the what is possible to fashion events that have never been seen before in the history of the world.  As such, they embody the principle of innovation and transformation that underlies every single creative act that has occurred in the course of civilization.
  5. Middle Childhood (Ages 6-8):  Imagination – In middle childhoood, the sense of an inner subjective self develops for the first time, and this self is alive with images taken in from the outer world, and brought up from the depths of the unconscious.  This imagination serves as a source of creative inspiration in later life for artists, writers, scientists, and anyone else who finds their days and nights enriched for having nurtured a deep inner life.
  6. Late Childhood (Ages 9-11):  Ingenuity – Older children have acquired a wide range of social and technical skills that enable them to come up with marvelous strategies and inventive solutions for dealing with the increasing pressures that society places on them.  This principle of ingenuity lives on in that part of ourselves that ever seeks new ways to solve practical problems and cope with everyday responsibilities.
  7. Adolescence (Ages 12-20):  Passion –  The biological event of puberty unleashes a powerful set of changes in the adolescent body that reflect themselves in a teenager’s sexual, emotional, cultural, and/or spiritual passion.  Adolescence passion thus represents a significant touchstone for anyone who is seeking to reconnect with their deepest inner zeal for life.
  8. Early Adulthood (Ages 20-35):  Enterprise –  It takes enterprise for young adults to accomplish their many responsibilities, including finding a home and mate, establishing a family or circle of friends, and/or getting a good job.  This principle of enterprise thus serves us at any stage of life when we need to go out into the world and make our mark.
  9. Midlife (Ages 35-50):  Contemplation – After many years in young adulthood of following society’s scripts for creating a life, people in midlife often take a break from worldly responsibilities to reflect upon the deeper meaning of their lives, the better to forge ahead with new understanding.  This element of contemplation represents an important resource that we can all draw upon to deepen and enrich our lives at any age.
  10. Mature Adulthood (Ages 50-80): Benevolence – Those in mature adulthood have raised families, established themselves in their work life, and become contributors to the betterment of society through volunteerism, mentorships, and other forms of philanthropy.  All of humanity benefits from their benevolence.  Moreover, we all can learn from their example to give more of ourselves to others.
  11. Late Adulthood (Age 80+):  Wisdom – Those with long lives have acquired a rich repository of experiences that they can use to help guide others.  Elders thus represent the source of wisdom that exists in each of us, helping us to avoid the mistakes of the past while reaping the benefits of life’s lessons.
  12. Death & Dying:  Life – Those in our lives who are dying, or who have died, teach us about the value of living.  They remind us not to take our lives for granted, but to live each moment of life to its fullest, and to remember that our own small lives form of a part of a greater whole.
Since each stage of life has its own unique gift to give to humanity, we need to do whatever we can to support each stage, and to protect each stage from attempts to suppress its individual contribution to the human life cycle.  Thus, we need to be wary, for example, of attempts to thwart a young child’s need to play through the establishment high-pressure formal academic preschools.  We should protect the wisdom of aged from elder abuse.  We need to do what we can to help our adolescents at risk.  We need to advocate for prenatal education and services for poor mothers, and support safe and healthy birthing methods in third world countries. We ought to take the same attitude toward nurturing the human life cycle as we do toward saving the environment from global warming and industrial pollutants.  For by supporting each stage of the human life cycle, we will help to ensure that all of its members are given care and helped to blossom to their fullest degree.
Adapted from Thomas Armstrong, The Human Odyssey:  Navigating the Twelve Stages of Life.  New York:  Sterling, 2008.
Something you may enjoy!

Saturday, January 6, 2018

GRATITUDE!


8 Tremendously Important Ways That Gratitude Can Change Your Life







“If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, “thank you,” that would suffice.” Meister Eckhart

It’s amazing how one simple, easy, positive action can change so much in a person’s life.

One of the things that has had the biggest effect on my life is the realization of the power of gratitude. Simply giving thanks.

It has affected everything. It has made me a more positive person. A more productive person. A better achiever. A better husband and father and son and brother (at least, I like to think so). A happier person. I’m not perfect, but gratitude has made me better.



Can it change your life as well? I can guarantee it. You might not get the exact same benefits as I have, but there’s no doubt in my mind that the simple act of gratitude on a regular basis will change anyone’s life, positively and immediately. How many other changes can claim to be that quick, that easy, and that profound?

Let’s take a look at some of the ways you can incorporate gratitude into your life, and how it will change your life. These are just some examples, based on my experience and the experiences of others I’ve talked with, and not all will apply to your life. But pick and choose the ones you think will work for you.




1. Have a morning gratitude session. Take one minute in the morning (make it a daily ritual) to think of the people who have done something nice for you, to think of all the things in your life you’re grateful for. You won’t get to everything in one minute, but it’s enough. And it will instantly make your day better, and help you start your day off right. Can you think of a better use of one minute?

2. When you’re having a hard day … make a gratitude list. We all have those bad days sometimes. We are stressed out from work. We get yelled at by someone. We lose a loved one. We hurt a loved one. We lose a contract or do poorly on a project. One of the things that can make a bad day much better is making a list of all the things you’re thankful for. There are always things to be thankful for — loved ones, health, having a job, having a roof over your head and clothes on your back, life itself.

3. Instead of getting mad at someone, show gratitude. That’s a major switching of attitudes — actually a complete flip. And so this isn’t always easy to do. But I can promise you that it’s a great thing to do. If you get mad at your co-worker, for example, because of something he or she did … bite your tongue and don’t react in anger. Instead, take some deep breaths, calm down, and try to think of reasons you’re grateful for that person. Has that person done anything nice for you? Has that person ever done a good job? Find something, anything, even if it’s difficult. Focus on those things that make you grateful. It will slowly change your mood. And if you get in a good enough mood, show your gratitude to that person. It will improve your mood, your relationship, and help make things better. After showing gratitude, you can ask for a favor — can he please refrain from shredding your important documents in the future? And in the context of your gratitude, such a favor isn’t such a hard thing for the co-worker to grant.




4. Instead of criticizing your significant other, show gratitude. This is basically the same as the above tactic, but I wanted to point out how gratitude can transform a marriage or relationship. If you constantly criticize your spouse, your marriage will slowly deteriorate — I promise you. It’s important to be able to talk out problems, but no one likes to be criticized all the time. Instead, when you find yourself feeling the urge to criticize, stop and take a deep breath. Calm down, and think about all the reasons you’re grateful for your spouse. Then share that gratitude, as soon as possible. Your relationship will become stronger. Your spouse will learn from your example — especially if you do this all the time. Your love will grow, and all will be right in the world.

5. Instead of complaining about your kids, be grateful for them.
Many parents (myself included) get frustrated with their children. They are too slow to do things, they have a bad attitude, they can’t clean up after themselves, and they pick their nose too much. Unfortunately, sometimes parents will communicate that frustration to their children too often, and the kids will begin to feel bad about themselves. Many parents have done this, and while it’s not perfect, it’s a part of parenthood. But there’s a better way: follow the method above of calming down when you’re frustrated, and thinking of reasons you’re grateful to your child. Share these reasons with your child. And then take the opportunity to teach them, instead of criticizing them.

6. When you face a major challenge, be grateful for it. Many people will see something difficult as a bad thing. If something goes wrong, it’s a reason to complain, it’s a time of self-pity. That won’t get you anywhere. Instead, learn to be grateful for the challenge — it’s an opportunity to grow, to learn, to get better at something. This will transform you from a complainer into a positive person who only continues to improve. People will like you better and you’ll improve your career. Not too shabby.

7. When you suffer a tragedy, be grateful for the life you still have. I’ve recently lost an aunt, and my children recently lost a grandmother. These tragedies can be crippling if you let them overcome you. And while I’m not saying you shouldn’t grieve — of course you should — you can also take away something even greater from these tragedies: gratitude for the life you still have. Appreciation for the fleeting beauty of life itself. Love for the people who are still in your life. Take this opportunity to show appreciation to these people, and to enjoy life while you can.

8. Instead of looking at what you don’t have, look at what you do have. Have you ever looked around you and bemoaned how little you have? How the place you live isn’t your dream house, or the car you drive isn’t as nice as you’d like, or your peers have cooler gadgets or better jobs? If so, that’s an opportunity to be grateful for what you already have. It’s easy to forget that there are billions of people worse off than you — who don’t have much in the way of shelter or clothes, who don’t own a car and never will, who don’t own a gadget or even know what one is, who don’t have a job at all or only have very menial, miserable jobs in sweatshop conditions. Compare your life to these people’s lives, and be grateful for the life you have. And realize that it’s already more than enough, that happiness is not a destination — it’s already here.





“Everyday, think as you wake up, today I am fortunate to be alive, I have a precious human life, I am not going to waste it. I am going to use all my energies to develop myself, to expand my heart out to others; to achieve enlightenment for the benefit of all beings. I am going to have kind thoughts towards others, I am not going to get angry or think badly about others. I am going to benefit others as much as I can.”Dalai Lama

Monday, January 1, 2018

CHARTER FOR COMPASSION


---Thank you Karen Armstrong for bringing the ''Charter For Compassion'' to the world.

Wednesday, December 20, 2017

A CHRISTMAS CAROL - SCROOGE!



ALASTAIR SIM

''A Christmas Carol''


By C. Dickens




 ---I’m sure that we are all familiar with this story by Charles Dickens. We have the penny pinching Ebenezer Scrooge having very little spirit or love in his heart. He thinks that debtors prison is a good enough place for those who can’t payback loans. He sees death as a way to deal with the surplus population. He is really concerned having less people on the surface (of the Earth) to deal with.



---The night is Christmas Eve. He is visited by the ghost of Jacob Marley, who was once his business partner. Marley warns Scrooge of his miserly ways and how he will regret them in the afterlife. He, also, speaks of three ghosts who will visit Scrooge this night.

---The three ghosts visit named Christmas past, present and future. They take him through periods of his life. It is revealed how Scrooge's miserliness took shape and strengthened overtime. BUT…lo and behold he saw the pain and suffering that he caused over the years, also. This was increasingly painful for him to endure watching.



---He has a change of heart. Scrooge learns a very valuable life-lesson through all this. He realizes that mending his ways and being more other-oriented Is far more the way to be. He changes from his penny pinching demeanor to loving others and sharing his wealth. He has now opened his heart and you can see the joy and happiness abound. Though this story is quite well known, it is worth another reading or viewing by those so inclined. Be Well.

 





~~~~~~~~~


A CHRISTMAS CAROL



The THEME



---I’d like to share a theme that I see very often. It is the idea of going from selfish to selfless. I think that you have encountered this many times before…though it may NOT have been recognized.

---The famous book - Silas Marner has it. Old Silas was a miser who’d bury his money until LOVE came into his life in the form of a baby to care for left at his door. A Christmas Carol has the old miser Scrooge penny-pinching his way through life until he sees the error in that lifestyle.

---A baby going through the ‘’terrible two’s’’ encounters much the same. Actually, all rites-of-passage are for this - developing and transitioning into the next phase. If he goes through it properly and develops normally his life will be one of caring and sharing. If NOT a smooth journey than one may get ‘’stuck’’ and find it downright difficult to share. He doesn’t transition from the ‘’me’’ vs. ‘’you’’ to an ‘’us’’ space, easily. He gets stuck in getting his me space satisfied. He is still very self-oriented.



---The downside of this is that he never feels satisfied and never knows when he has had enough. The ‘’ideal’’ would be… ‘’me’’ vs. ‘’you’’ smoothly becoming an ‘’us’’ space. If this doesn’t happen, he is always trying to justify himself as a me. Unfortunately, one is a prime candidate for addiction - trying in vain to fill this emptiness by whatever seems to work. It is usually a ‘’feel good’’ distracter making false promises ’’to fill the void, but never does.’’ Ideally, folks go from me, me, me to us, us, us. When LOVE + KINDNESS of some sort comes into it, the transition occurs. When this doesn’t happen is when we continue the heartaches (the same-old, same-old.) Be Well.