Faith

The dictionary would define faith as having complete trust or confidence in someone or something. For those with a religious bent it is strongly related to a belief in a god and the dogma or doctrines of their chosen religion. For those indoctrinated into their religion as well. Faith to me simply means trusting something or someone without evidence they are worthy of that trust. And I generally don’t do that because I question everything that has not supplied me with reasonable evidence to be trusted.

Roots of Hope by Shantanu Baruah inspired me to think a bit deeper on the topic of faith and it also elicited this comment from me…

The roots of faith are steeped in commitment.

What a person believes deeply without evidence is their prerogative. I’m okay with that. That’s why my comment reflected what I felt about faith. Most believers of anything are committed to what they believe. It feels natural, correct and unquestionable. That last bit – unquestionable – is the part I’m not okay with.

Since the beginning of time, we have seen simple beliefs overturned with explanations as to why they are not the truth. As we increase our foundation of knowledge, beliefs get tossed out right and left, leaving us with more surety than what we had before. Belief in something then just becomes silly. As an example, how many of us were told that Santa Claus existed? And how many of us still do? If you do and are no longer a child, please seek help! But seriously, you understand the concept of “When you know better, you do better.” that Maya Angelou was referring to – when truths make themselves known, you can’t simply continue to believe in what is not true. It doesn’t make sense.

Many of you know that I don’t subscribe to the supernatural. I prefer a life based in reality and knowns but I realize that there are still many unknowns to contend with as I go about living. What I feel I do know is that those truths haven’t been understood or discovered yet, and may never present themselves in my lifetime. And that, makes sense.

Engaged

The piece below by Walt Page prompted this comment from me –

We should empathize with our eyes, our bodies giving full attention, letting the sounds
 of sincere words resonate in our ears.

– as well as embroiling me in more thoughts about listening. Thank you for the inspiration, Walt!

He is so right that it’s time, beyond time. I wonder why it’s always been such a difficult thing for us humans. Communication is such an important aspect of relationships. Yet, we shy away from it initially, fail miserably when the thresholds of civility are pushed, and feel hampered when trust is thin. I’m generous; probably more than a small minority is afflicted.

After letting my mind wander through possible reasons for this, I go back to being a small child, when I was chastised or told to be quiet way too often. My opinions were shot down often, me frequently having to defend them in heated arguments, taken seriously rarely or worse criticized for having them. I honestly think it hampered my ability to listen and limited my desire to communicate sincerely. There was no genuine intention for all parties to be heard. My upbringing and my incessant need to prove myself was far more important. I was, more often than not, considered a hothead at the very least, argumentative. Thanks, Mom and Dad.

As I grew older, living on my own, raising children after two marriages, I feel like I softened. Not right away, more like when I reached middle-age. First, I had to admit to myself that it’s not always fun to embroil myself in heated arguments. Secondly, I finally got to the point where I felt the need to be heard wasn’t just the communicator’s responsibility. My ears had to be in the conversation too.

My parents may have screwed up in their parenting, but being an adult, I realized how important it was to engage and to do it sincerely. Most people are horrible communicators, but maybe I need to remember that maybe they had terrible parents too.

It’s Time

It’s time to listen
to really hear
to pay attention
to what’s being said

too often we pretend to listen
while our minds are wandering
worrying about money
the corona virus, our children

even when we are alone we don’t really listen
we don’t hear the sounds of silence
the songs of the birds or the power of the wind
what our animals are saying with their eyes

so listen… really listen
hear the sounds around you
the music of the night
the time has come

it’s time to listen

~The Tennessee Poet~
©Walt Page 2020 All Rights Reserved

Sticking To It

When I was younger, I followed the adults before me and made a New Year’s Resolution or two. It’s as if January 1 were some magical day, which that alone ensured success for those things I’d wanted to change. More often than not, I’d fail to follow through. Eventually, I stopped doing that. On the day I decide when I’m frustrated or dissatisfied enough to warrant some change within myself, I do it, whatever that day of the year turns out to be. It seems it works better for me this way.

Friends And Family

Picking the closest one is like choosing a favorite. Now, that might hurt feelings, and I don’t want to do that. Plus, I really can’t say I have just one, nor are they all blood relatives! I consider my real friends family.

I will feel close to people and open up to them when I know they accept and love me and allow me the space to be myself. The friends and family who feel the closest to me are those who can let me be just who I need to be at any given moment. Those relationships where I can let my guard down and feel safe. It’s been a process, literally years, to understand what I needed and get to this point of surrounding myself primarily with those who respected my thinking.

So that’s me, in a nutshell! 🙂

Words

Recently, my dear friend, Chuck, posted about The Magic Power of Words, which prompted me to comment…

“It took me years to become a writer. I didn’t know what I wanted to be when I grew up until I was in my late 40s but what finally pushed me in that direction was finally understanding what I loved so much – words – how they sounded, their definitions, how I enjoyed forming sentences or thoughts and what made music and reading so special to me. I had been in love with words all my life. It was time to honor them.”

… and he later asked me to expound on those thoughts. Interestingly, I had already created a draft to do precisely that! I will happily double down on the view that words are special and wonderful and every positive adjective out there – in other words, they are indeed magic to me! But I will also compliment my friend on putting into words for himself how divine words are—then capping off his last sentence with the title and intention of his blog – sublime!

Furthermore, I felt it was important to delve deeper into the subject on a more emotionally-evoking aspect of it for me, and purely because words are that exciting. I see many new blogs on WordPress, where it feels like the commitment to writing and using those precious words well is lacking in the presentation of their work. I’m not just talking about me being a Grammar Nazi (which, at heart, I am) but just taking words and placing them willy-nilly without any forethought to whether they rightly belong in that order or in that thought process. It feels like massive disrespect to those words I hold so dearly. Add to that, they sadly also don’t care enough to spell them correctly, in the right context, or even in a flow that makes sense. It diminishes the glow I feel that words deserve to be bathed in.

Now, I’m fully prepared to be called out that reading is subjective, and maybe the things I’ve mentioned here, another writer could feel about my pieces – I’m not perfect, I do make mistakes in my writing, and gotten called out about it to which I happily thank them. What I’m referring to primarily is a gross misunderstanding of how to write a coherent thought. Words are meant to deliver information about the subject matter, concept, or story idea – not take away from the purpose of what those definitions are relating. Sadly, I’ve read many who, as I said, don’t seem to be that committed to pulling off a sound thought. That makes me sad because I revere words. I hope that we all remember how unique and magical words are, letting this opinion and concern of mine be recognized the next time a post begins to percolate in a writer’s brain.

Thanks for reading! Comments and/or slap downs encouraged. 😉

Will As A God

pxhere.com

we all ponder what is truth
not one of us with the same outlook
theories or hypothesis’
as varied as the lives which surround us

haven’t we all witnessed people
who have such a zest that life never seems to end
and have written a multitude of stories over the norm
possessing a zeal which feels absent in us
accomplishments being even fewer

and those at the end of a relatively long life saying “it’s enough”
with a need or a want to move on
having endured so much hardship and pain
just wanting it over with

or those who just plod along
living relatively simple
but meaningful, loving lives
contributing a harmony of sorts

if god is life and life is nature and nature dictates our decisions
then maybe it’s the sheer will to remain alive
that what drives us should guide us
deciding our ultimate purpose or names this so-called god we want to prove

this belief of having a much-needed pull
for when the chips are down
something we engage with
when it’s all too much

i would submit that sheer will is supreme
this internal force is a pressure to endure
and can be what rules us
wow, what a concept to get behind

they say you can manifest what you want
yeah, but not without effort
i would submit you are your own god
and that god is will

These thoughts were inspired by this conversation about belief systems between Ricky Gervais and Russell Brand. The bit about it starts at approximately 33:40, but feel free to listen to it in its entirety as it was an interesting conversation.

Letting It All Go

Inspired by Sadje’s Sunday Poser #2

Relaxation can occur when I put my mind to it. Sounds silly, doesn’t it? But I really do have to plan for it! And the place where that is best accomplished for me is at the beach. Give me blue water, palm trees, white sand, a cabana to relax and there is literally nothing that will stop me from relaxing. How could I not think I’m in my personal paradise laying next to my semi-conscious hubs listening to the sounds of the ocean and the wildlife circling above? To me, a cloudy day at the beach is better than being embroiled in the day-to-day of the hectic life or even doing the things I enjoy in the privacy of my home. It’s a sense of completely letting go of control, and that is very relaxing to me. The beach is the only place my mind seems to just dispense of the focused habits I force myself to manage in my “real world”. The pics above are from our favorite resort in Cancun and a trip we took to Tulum, Mexico.

Say it with me “Aaaaaaaahhhhhhhh!” Thanks, Sadje! I will never tire of talking, thinking or being at a beautiful beach! 🙂

Reflecting On Thankful Things

pxhere.com

Inspired by Sadje’s Sunday Poser #1

Many things have gotten me through these last 58 years in no particular order of preference or admiration. A lot has tried to take me down too, but here I am anyways. 😉

In 2020, I’m grateful for my good friends even though the hugs, the conversations, and the interactions are few and far apart. Thankfully, my husband is my rock and a strong support person, as well as my boys, who I’m in contact with just about every day. I’m genuinely missing their hugs, though. But we’ll get there!

Working from home was the norm for me before Covid-19, so that hasn’t changed. I will always be immensely grateful I get to do my gig in the comfort of my surroundings. My “prison,” which some people might call it, is my she-cave, and it’s safe. It works for me!

My family and close friends have, until this point, been spared in this pandemic, and that calms me. I’m hoping that a vaccine will soon reduce the cases and the death rates we are currently seeing. I would be most grateful for that!

Even with all the health issues I’ve dealt with and am dealing with so far this year, I’m glad that I have a strong will and determination to overcome these challenges. Although my outlook has not always been positive, it has remained solidly in the corner of “you can get through this.” So, that’s something I’m eternally grateful to possess.

When I look back over the last three years, the WordPress community also gives me much to be thankful about. The friends I’ve made, the incredible work of others I get to read, the conversations – good and bad – I’ve had, all of it has made me a better person. I thank you all for that. Being able to create, to articulate my world and my thoughts, and do it in such a loving and supportive environment, well, I’ve not had it this good in a long time. I’m truly grateful for what I’ve gotten out of this writing journey.

Going back even further, I’m thankful to be here. Life is draining, but it’s also thoroughly excellent. So, I’m grateful to be able to take the good with the bad. Here’s to the next moments that await me. 🙂