Saturday, May 02, 2009


Wordle: mother's love
(click to enlarge)
image created by:

Thursday, May 29, 2008

where were you before?

i saw dr. phil today. his guest asked a group of young kids if they knew where they were before they were born.

i was curious to know what shuggie would say, so i asked her.

"do you remember where you were before you were born?"


"where were you?"

"in Jesus."



we don't usually use that phrase, "in Jesus" so this startled me a little.

"what was he like? was he nice?"


then she giddy-upped down the hall.

Friday, May 09, 2008


here is a video we made for our moms called "ladybug"...

here are some quotes that inspired us about moms...

"A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie. " -Tenneva Jordan

“A mother is the truest friend we have, when trials heavy and sudden, fall upon us; when adversity takes the place of prosperity; when friends who rejoice with us in our sunshine desert us; when trouble thickens around us, still will she cling to us, and endeavor by her kind precepts and counsels to dissipate the clouds of darkness, and cause peace to return to our hearts.”
--Washington Irving

"The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new."
- Rajneesh

An ounce of mother is worth a pound of clergy. - Spanish Proverb

"If evolution really works, how come mothers only have two hands?" - Milton Berle

Sweater, n.: garment worn by child when its mother is feeling chilly.
- Ambrose Bierce

The sweetest sounds to mortals given
Are heard in Mother, Home, and Heaven.
~William Goldsmith Brown

"There's nothing like a mama-hug." - Adabella Radici

"Who ran to help me when I fell,
And would some pretty story tell,
Or kiss the place to make it well?
My mother."
~Ann Taylor

"I cannot forget my mother. She is my bridge. When I needed to get across, she steadied herself long enough for me to run across safely." - Renita Weems

"Whatever else is unsure in this stinking dunghill of a world a mother's love is not." - James Joyce

"All that I am or ever hope to be, I owe to my angel Mother."

- Abraham Lincoln


Friday, April 18, 2008


"The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quiet, alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple beauty of nature..." -Anne Frank

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

deep grief

i lived across the street from a girl named amy when i was a little kid (age 4-9). she was 4 or 5 years older than me (and much taller than me), so the kids in the neighborhood called her called her "big amy", and called me "little amy".

just a couple weeks ago her angry unstable ex-husband drowned their three beautiful children in a bathtub at a hotel room during his visitation period with them. he then attempted suicide himself but he survived. he made threats in the months prior to the murders that he knew killing her children was the worst thing he could do to hurt her. he was right.

here is more of the story:,0,5664001.story

i really can hardly even go there in my mind.

my heart aches for you tonight, amy.

may those kids come to you in a dream and let you know they are just fine, with the Lord.

Heavenly Father,
i am welling up with tears in my attempt to connect with you about this. i know if i plug into the reality of what amy is going through i will just break down. i am afraid....

Lord, thank you for giving me courage. thank you for keeping your hand on amy during this time of grief. thank you for providing the comfort and the peace that seems so unbelievable during a horrific tragedy like this. you give us the peace that only you understand. thank you for helping us have faith. thank you for helping us forgive. thank you for helping amy forgive the man who dragged her though hell and murdered her babies.

thank you for helping her forgive you for allowing this to happen. thank you for helping us all trust you, and know that you are able to bring awesome things from horrible situations and deep pain like this. we really can't understand how you can let things like this happen, but we trust you, Lord, and we know you are with us. we are so grateful for you.

thank you for using my family in any way that we can be used to bring comfort and peace to amy's heart. thank you for helping me get my tears out. i just am so sad. it's just so awful. i'm just so sorry, amy.

(weeping... sobbing... can't type)

thank you for hearing me, Father. i love you. i wish you hadn't let this happen. but i trust you and i love you. thank you for helping us all learn what we need to learn from it.

in the name of Jesus i pray. AMEN and amen.

please give to the LOVE fund for amy:

Monday, February 25, 2008

come out of hiding

i recently changed my icon on myspace and youtube to this picture of me with my little family. this was kind of big for me, as i have a history of hating pictures of myself. most of the time i would try to avoid them all together, but with the digital revolution, i now see a zillion pics of myself on my computer. in the past, i would scrutinize them, sometimes delete them, or keep them but never share them with anyone. they'd pop up on my slideshow, and i'd cringe and look away. for some reason, i just never quite looked the way i wanted to.

i've been working on this problem for as long as i can recall. i have a master's in psychology, and my interest in this field has been, in part, to free myself from issues like this. but psychology can only take you so far. for this deep, longstanding issue i've needed the same kind of help that enabled me to quit smoking cigs.... the supernatural help that only God can offer. like the "good book" says, through Christ, all things are possible. so i've been trying the same thing that worked before... i've been handing it over to God through Christ.

the problem really came to a head when i had my baby (almost three years ago now). my post-pregnancy body is much curvier and larger than it was before (even my feet are bigger). it's been a real challenge. i've been praying about it, sometimes very intensely, mostly because i don't want to hand this self-consciousness down to my little girl. each time it crops up again (that cringing feeling) i hand it over to God and thank him for healing me. slowly, quietly, patiently, God is working inside of me, and has been changing my mind about it. he is helping me see myself in a new light: one that more resembles the loving way that he sees me. (one kind of miracle is a "shift in perception", as marianne williamson says)

this issue came up again over the weekend. i had to wade through a bunch of video footage, and i'm in a good bit of it. i've had to make some decisions as to what parts to include in the videos. yesterday, as i watched my excited little girl and myself gallop like "little horsey and mommy horsey" toward one of those big moon bouncers, i felt that cringe again, and i had the urge to delete it. just then, a clear, resounding thought filled my eyes with tears:

"come out of hiding"

so, today, i am completing that video, and including that footage of us galloping along as a leap of faith. i am making a conscious decision to let go and stop worrying about how i look. i've also decided to stop being concerned with other people's judgements of me. i will no longer fear ridicule and criticism. i have decided that other people's opinions of me and my appearance, in the grand scheme of things, are totally irrelevant.

i choose to be free. i am what i am, and i look how i look. some days i look better than others. and, as morrissey sings, "some girl's mothers are bigger than other girl's mothers". and that's just fine.

i'm already starting to get used to seeing myself. i'm already feeling better about it. it's a real relief. i'll be including more and more footage of myself in our videos, so one day my little girl can watch them and see me there too, not just hear my voice or catch a glimpse of my sneakers. i'm sure she'll want to see me there laughing and playing with her. the sight of a mommy having fun with her little girl is one of beauty, no matter how you dice it. i want her to look at these videos and see a woman - her mother - who, no matter how she looks on the outside, feels comfortable in her own skin. to me, that's what makes a confident, courageous, beautiful woman.

besides, my girl doesn't seem to mind at all that i'm not some glamour queen. she loves me just as i am. (although sometimes she says "mommy, take those glasses off! i want those eyes to be free!" maybe i'll stop hiding behind those one day too.)

so.... i'm just fine, as i am. i don't need to be perfect to be beautiful in my own way. and i'll keep reading these words as long as i need to for them to really truly sink in.

i'm a bit thick headed. it may take a while... ;)

Sunday, February 03, 2008

we are builders

(y)our words
hold a mighty power
to build up
and to tear down

of the spirit
gives the strength
to control the impulse
to destroy

so the gifts
of words
and wit
and wisdom
and where-with-all

aren't used

in a harmful way.

we can give

with our words


(thank you God.)

photo: "road to heaven" by john watson

Thursday, January 31, 2008


(a poem for mary,
with Love)

with grace

and faith
and patience,
am i
we're no longer

then one day
through Love
and humility
we see
that "those others"
are really "our selves"

so we embrace
and are embraced

we judge
and are judged

we attack
and are attacked

we forgive
and are forgiven

we Love
and are Loved

and all parts
of our selves
are eventually


photos chosen especially for shuggie, artists unknown.
- lone horse found here
- mommy & baby snuzzling found here

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

rose colored glass

rose came by for lunch today,
and brought us some beautiful gifts...

thanks rose!

Friday, January 25, 2008

toltec wisdom

The Four Agreements

1. Be Impeccable with your Word
Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the Word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your Word in the direction of truth and love.

2. Don't Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering.

3. Don't Make Assumptions
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.

4. Always Do Your Best
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse, and regret.

Author: Miguel Ruiz

Thursday, January 24, 2008


sometimes when it's been a few days i forget how good stretching feels. i don't mean ordinary in-your-seat kind of stretching. or like the stretch that accompanies a big yawn. i mean down on the floor yoga-ish kind of stretching.

one thing i love to do is to stand up and tilt my head all the way back. then i let it hang there and breathe and let gravity pull on me. i stay there longer than i would if i were to heed the first thought of coming back up, which usually translates to about 30 seconds or so. when i come back up i get a huge head rush that fills my body with energy. sometimes it's so powerful it knocks me down (i've learned to do it near a chair so i can hang on) the feeling of it reminds me of one of those glo-sticks that fills with light when you crack it.

i'll never forget the first time i saw a glo-stick. i was just a kid, and it was a brand new invention being featured at a patent show (one of the perks of having a dad who works for the patent office) . at the time, they just came in green. my dad got us a couple samples to take home that day. we thought they were so cool.

i can't remember what happened to mine. i probably kept it in it's package. maybe forever. i did things like that...wanting to save stuff for a special occasion. (what i didn't know is that special occasions don't just show up... we have to create them.)

sometimes i'll go a while without stretching, like my tension is somehow serving me. then i remember the glo-stick, and i stop what i'm doing to stretch a bit. there's nothing quite like that feeling of being all lit up inside.

Monday, January 21, 2008


move more
eat well
move more
eat well
move more
eat well
move more
eat well
move more
eat well
move more
eat well
move more
eat well

(even when it's cold outside)

Sunday, January 20, 2008


If you do lack in wealth be not grieved. You have with you the wealth of contentment. You can remove every shortcoming of yours with this wealth. The discontented heart knows no peace. Every gain, no matter how big, is too small for it. From the empty branch to the leaves, from the leaves to the flowers, from the flowers to the fruits--all these are different stages of ambition.

The branch that has flowers but no fruits is discontented, but when it is reminded that there are other branches that have not even flowers, its discontentment is abated.

Yet, if it be content with what it has and wait, surely the coming of fruits is not far off.

Gulam Rue Zamin (Servant of the Earth)
"The First Rays of Dawn" Daily Devotional
January 20th, p. 8
Published by Priya Nath Metha; 1973

photo: "laura flowers" by laura

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


shuggie loves snowflakes...

Sunday, January 13, 2008

tea party

we've had a bad cold now for a while. we've been up to our ankles around here in kleenex. we passed the time watching movies, playing games and having tea parties. it's the best fun we've ever had with a few clumps of dried up play-doh.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


shuggie loves to spin. it's a natural high.

this is some footage we came across while cleaning up our hard drive. it's about a year old...

Wednesday, January 09, 2008

the crown

pulling into the driveway of her grandparents house, shuggie spots poppy in the yard waving at her. this is her response.

poppy is one of shuggie's three grandfathers. he is a brilliant, accomplished, and dignified man. i'd never seen him so fun and playful until shug came along. it's funny how little ones do that to us. it's wonderful actually.

"children's children are the crown of old men, and the glory of children are their fathers." ~ proverbs 17:6

Saturday, January 05, 2008

my pyramid

my little (almost 3 year old) girl walked in on me in the bathroom yesterday. she said "do you have a maxi pad mommy?" i said "yes babe. thanks." once i had her go into another bathroom to fetch one for me. she remembered what it was called. that made me smile.

then she said "mommy's having her pyramid." that made me laugh out loud.

i said "honey, go tell that to daddy." she did. i knew he'd laugh out loud, too. he did.

photo: by cjphoto on zooomr photo sharing
"the red pyramid of dahshur in egypt"

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

a new day

God Calling Journal: January 1
I stand between the years. The Light of My Presence is flung across the year to come - the radiance of the Sun of Righteousness. Backward, over the past year, is My Shadow thrown, hiding trouble and sorrow and disappointment.

Dwell not on the past - only on the present. Only use the past as the trees use My Sunlight to absorb it, to make from it in after days the warming fire-rays. So store only the blessings from Me, the Light of the World. Encourage yourselves by the thought of these.

Bury every fear of the future, of poverty for those dear to you, of suffering, of loss. Bury all thought of unkindness and bitterness, all your dislikes, your resentments, your sense of failure, your disappointment in others and in yourselves, your gloom, your despondency, and let us leave them all, buried, and go forward to a new and risen life.

Remember that you must not see as the world sees. I hold the year in My Hands - in trust for you. But I shall guide you one day at a time.

Leave the rest with Me. You must not anticipate the gift by fears or thoughts of the days ahead.

And for each day I shall supply the wisdom and the strength.

"God Calling Journal" recorded by Two Listeners,
Edited by A.J. Russell; Barbour Publishing Inc. (c.1996)

Monday, December 31, 2007

new year's eve

...we'll be ringing it in with a little magic milk ...

...and some words of Love from a dear soul...

"May this year
and the coming year
bring emancipation
from all sorrows,
and may thou live
in peace and happiness
forever." ~ Nath

Gulam Rue Zamin (Servant of the Earth)
"The First Rays of Dawn" December 31st, p.209
Published by Priya Nath Metha; 1973

Saturday, December 29, 2007

remember you're dreaming

the video pasted in below is a note for shuggie in the future.

it's dedicated to my mom's side of the family. after years apart, we met up over the holidays. it was awesome.

we all talked about how much we miss the lake house that's featured in the video. it's where we used to spend a lot of time together. my grandaddy built it by hand, along with the stairway and the dock. when he died we scattered his ashes off that dock.

we couldn't afford to keep the house, so we sold it. we took the pictures of it when we visited recently for the first time in many years. as soon as i saw the house i burst into tears.

i want to send special thanks and love to grandaddy and grandma. we miss you guys. we'll see you in our dreams...

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

christmas moon

we hope everyone has a wonderful day.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

a prayer for friends

Heavenly Father, thank you for helping my friends find the spiritual home you have prepared for them. thank you for helping them know which way to turn, and if, when, and where to move. thanks for reminding us that you will speak to us through our hearts, and convict us of our best course of action. thank you for guiding us one day at a time, one step at a time, and taking on all of our worries, cares, and concerns of earthly things. thank you for your great sacrifice of the Christ Jesus that we are preparing to celebrate. now that we have a child we understand how great a sacrifice it truly is. thank you for Loving us THAT MUCH. we owe you a huge debt of Love. we are grateful you've made it possible for us to give Love to one another in so many ways. thank you for helping us forgive everyone that hurt us, and for helping us forgive ourselves when we hurt other people. thank you for helping us be a beacon of your Light and Love wherever we go. thank you for the Joy of the Holy Spirit. thank you for helping us feel that Joy, regardless of our uncertainty of the future or our difficult circumstances. we trust you completely, and are so very grateful for you. WE LOVE YOU SO MUCH. thank you for working wonders and miracles in the days and weeks to come. thank you for aligning our thoughts with yours, and our vision with your vision. you wow us with your mighty power every day, and we don't have the words to express our gratitude. thank you for hearing my prayer today. may this prayer increase in strength and power each time it's read. in Jesus' precious name, Amen.

picture credit: this lovely stained glass creation was not made by me, but i am sadly unable to give proper credit as it's just a picture i ran across one day and loved. if anyone knows please leave me a comment here.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

makes me smile...

come, cuddle your head on my shoulder, dear,
your head like the golden-rod,
and we will go sailing away from here
to the beautiful land of nod

~ ella wheeler wilcox (1850-1919)

Saturday, December 15, 2007

a fond farewell

i learned a couple weeks ago that my contract at school would not be renewed. they're getting rid of a bunch of adjuncts, and i've been there the least amount of time, so i'm pretty much out. it's no big surprise. adjunct work is temporary by nature. and it's good in many ways. i'm ready for a change.

i wrote a farewell note to my students on a course blog i created. i wanted them to know that they have touched my heart and changed my life for the better. i also wrote a list of some things i've learned since i've been there. i thought it would be nice to post it here for posterity...

- i love making people laugh, especially groggy eyed students in the morning

-i made some good friends that i love and trust

-people sometimes get confused between studying war and studying peace

- the faculty and the administration could work together better

-the town and the university could work together better

-some of us hold back our creative energies because we're scared

-there are many challenging professors and not as many caring ones

-it is extremely stressful not to be able to find parking before having to do any kind of public speaking

-it's very challenging to be a substitute teacher for any length of time

-it's tough to teach while people in class whisper to each other, and it takes effort and strength to stop it

-this job didn't pay nearly enough

-some of us could believe in our students more than we do

-there is racial tension that could use some attention

-i find topics like prejudice and racism very hard to teach, and have come home to shed tears over it many times

-there are many students and faculty who could use some love

-when people have problems they are afraid to seek help through formal channels

-lots of people trust me with their secrets

-i've gotten pretty good at public speaking

-i'm not very good at grading people (too many A's)

-i am good at telling stories

-i truly care about my students and my colleagues, and many of them seem to notice and appreciate it

-i have truly enjoyed teaching

-i love improv comedy, like asking people to write questions and then answering them on the spot

-sometimes when i'd tell a joke i'd hear crickets, but i always kept trying

-my husband is awesome - he always helped me when i needed it

-i needed a lot of help

-we all need help sometimes

-i have a big stack of anonymous mental health questions from the beginning of this semester that i intend to answer and put on a blog for everyone to see

-most students are challenged by and worried about the same kinds of things

-there's always at least one person in class that doesn't dig me or my teaching style

- i was always early for work

- even on the days i dreaded teaching, it went ok

-even though i had a whole bunch of students, i learned many of their names

- it feels good to call people by name

-i love making videos and sharing them with people

-a bunch of people at school seemed to enjoy our videos

-i'd rather stay at home with my girl when it snows then brave the roads

-i really miss my little girl when i work a lot

-i miss my mom too

-it was surreal coming to work after the incident at tech. i was glad i did, but i'm not sure i'm completely over it. i look around and pay attention more than i used to.

- i am much less self conscious about my appearance than i used to be (which makes public speaking much easier!)

-i enjoyed the identity of "college instructor", and am not sure what to call myself now

-i said a prayer for all of my students during my last minute in the classroom

-i cried on the way home that day

-i'm getting choked up typing this

-i'm not sure what's coming around the corner

-i have faith it will be something great.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

she is the dreamer

she's imagination
(she had heaven)
through the light projected
he can see himself up close

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

would you love me anyway?

sometimes we play the "would you love me anyway" game.... it's a silly sort of game that consists of questions like ...

if you had to carry me around in a backpack all day, would you love me anyway? if my lips got blown off in a plane crash, would you love me anyway? if i suddenly turned into a squirrel, would you love me anyway?

(that last one came from a student of mine... turns out he'd be a talking squirrel, which makes a huge difference in the "would you stay with me anyway" version of the game.)

of course, this game usually arises from silliness and a touch of insecurity, but it challenges the importance of our appearance (the look of our "meat suit," as we say). it asks about a deeper kind of love. it also asks questions about beauty: what is it? how important is it? what does it look like? what does it feel like? where does it come from?

with this in mind, and in the silliest of moods, i took a potato and drew a face on it, pretended it was me, and asked "would you love me anyway?"

(i invite anyone who writes or makes videos or whatnot to send me some of your own "would you love me anyway" stories. i'd love to see what you come up with.)

the idea of beauty always reminds me of a young woman i saw on oprah once. she was what anyone would consider physically gorgeous, until her entire body was badly burned when a drunk driver hit her car. her little face looked like it had almost melted away, like the way one of those really fancy detailed candles look after they've been used a few times. there was something permanently damaged about her eyes, though now i can't recall all the specifics. she had lots of health problems as a result of the accident, as you can imagine. honestly, she almost didn't look like a person anymore. it was so so so sad.

if i were burned from head to toe in a terrible accident, would you love me anyway?

i can't seem to locate a picture or any info from that show at the moment... (if anyone has info on this please pass it along) but i do remember that she wore a big sweet looking hat. i remember being horrified at what happened to her, naturally, and thinking, wow, she was so beautiful. that's so sad! what an awful awful thing....

then she spoke. and giggled. and giggled some more. and smiled an electric smile.

everyone in the audience that day was deeply affected by this young woman. she talked about the ups and downs. her story made us weepy. but with a joke and a chuckle, she made us laugh and feel good again. by the end of the show we all boo-hoo'd while she embraced the person that made the terrible choice to get behind the wheel that night.

that person (the "drunk driver") ... my heart goes out to them as well. it must be a tremendously hard thing to live with, much less to talk about openly. for some reason i can't even remember if that person was a he or she. there's just a blank spot in my memory there. (maybe that's a blessing.... maybe it's a good thing to let people start over again. let it be a mystery...)

even though much of the details elude me now, i will always remember the feeling i got when i saw that young woman hug the person who did this horrible thing to her. i remember thinking, now THAT is beautiful. SHE is beautiful. now i get it.

if i had a few drinks and hit your car on the way home, causing you to be burned from head to toe, would you love me anyway?

... oh my.....

picture credit: michael osborne, designer of the 2002 Love stamps
you can read more about the love stamps here:

Friday, November 30, 2007

long winter's nap

“It is good to realize that if love and peace can prevail on earth, and if we can teach our children to honour nature's gifts, the joys and beauties of the outdoors will be here forever.” - jimmy carter

Sunday, November 25, 2007

hugs & love

here's a video we just finished last night. it's got lots of hugs and lots of love it in. it's a bit of a tearjerker actually...

Friday, November 23, 2007


here is a video we just finished called "big, brown, and beautiful."

Monday, November 19, 2007

things i can't photograph

a lovely woman named kim posted this picture on the comments section of my myspace page. i was immediately inspired to write about it...

these are things
that mostly
i can't photograph

but it's all right
my broken heart
has healed

it breaks again
almost every day
over some thing
or other
and then heals again

my love for some one
any one
every one
love is eternal

my anger toward my mother
because i
forgive her

my tangled emotions
are captured in
poems that flow through me

the laughter
of my sister
is recorded
for posterity
a rainy day

my grandfather's
last breath
isn't as important
to me
as that last talk we had
before he left
or what he said
when he called me
in a dream
that time
my soul
lives and breathes
in every thing i create

my photographs

as for the sunshine....
it does feel good

Wednesday, November 07, 2007


(this poem is a response to a beautiful and thought provoking quote from Martha Graham that I just read on rblog )

it's true
there's a pain
that the artist

it's like the pain
of childbirth

or a kidney stone
or some other
creation inside

on easier days
it's like a splinter
in your finger
or a knot
in a favorite necklace
with which
you struggle

only struggling
is not actually
a requirement
of the job

True Peace
is God's Peace

it is real

it comes
from the inside-out

and it's available
to everyone

including artists

even during childbirth

so please
don't believe
that fear
and struggle
are part of your calling

we don't need
any of those things
to create miracles
move mountians
change lives
with artwork
and such

we just need God.

Photo: An artist's impression of Supernova 1986. The newly discovered nebula around the black hole or neutron star in the center is shown in blue,and is in the center of the expanding, fragmented shell of material thrown off in the supernova explosion, which is shown in red. CREDIT: Norbert Bartel and Michael F. Bietenholz,York University; Artist: G. Arguner

Thursday, November 01, 2007

rock paper scissors

there's a creature in my heart
and it's name is Love

there's a creature in my mind
and it's name is fear

i invite Love
into my mind
and it's

like paper
conquers rock
conquers scissors

conquers paper

only nothing
conquers Love

Love Lives Forever
Love Conquers All

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Thursday, October 25, 2007

e pluribus unum

the other day i was teaching my "lifespan development" class about encoding. (encoding is our ability to make a mental representation of something. in other words, to see something in your mind). i wanted to illustrate the idea that the encoding process is usually not crystal clear for any of us, so i drew two circles on the board and had them tell me what was on the penny.

this is always a pretty fun exercise. i make lincoln look like a goof, and they usually get big chunks of it wrong, which is enlightening for them. when we got to the stage where we examined a real penny to see how (in)accurate we were, i read the phrase "e pluribus unum".

i asked them what it meant and they stared at me like deer in headlights. i waited. finally one guy in the front row said "the many are one?"

"yes, the many unite into one." then i said "what's the phrase? united we stand..."

"...divided we fall!" they all chimed in, in unison. they sounded very excited to know the answer this time, despite the inherently sad nature of it.

"are we united or divided?" i asked.

"divided!" they said, without hesitation, like an ocean wave washing over me.

divided. it's so obvious.

"what does that mean for us?" i wondered.


"it's not looking good, i guess." they shook their heads. nope. not looking good.

what does this mean i wonder? are we falling? can we stop it?

a dear man in india saw one of our videos and later sent us a book that his father wrote. it's a book of daily devotionals. here is the reading for today:

October 25
"Khuda" (God) is an Urdu word. When it is written, a dot is placed above. If the dot be placed below, then the word does not change much, but changes entirely in meaning. It becomes "Juda" i.e. separate.

"Khuda" is the word in which resides the Greatness of God and which manifests itself in all, containing in itself the Universe, and containing itself in itself. "Khuda" is He who is in Union with Himself. "Juda" is a word that signifies separation from everything, even from itself, for it is separation.

A single dot when placed differently can create such a wide difference. A change in the angle of vision creates a complete change in meaning.

Thou who hast with thee the Perfect, place not the dot at the bottom!

But place the dot of "Juda" on top and let it become "Khuda"!

Why go from love to hate?

Go towards love and union from hate and separation.

By Nath
Gulam Rue Zamin (Servant of the Earth)

excerpt from the book: "The First Rays of Dawn"
Published by Priya Nath Metha; 1973

Thanks Priya for passing this beautiful book along to us.

(cue song: people get ready... )

picture of the penny borrowed from this page; picture of the train that transported lincoln's body from washington to springfield borrowed from this page

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

love is good

love sits in the center, balanced perfectly between justice and mercy.

i want to be love. nothing else matters.