Guns Don’t Kill

It’s not the guns that are coming over the border that are killing people, it’s the mentality that is leaking upwards into Canadians that is making people desire weapons.

We are not American….yet. If we begin to emulate their behaviour, how will we be able to distinguish our identity? I would love to believe that the tragedy in Florida this past weekend would never happen here, but I know that’s delusional.

So, what do we do?

Ignorance is the only thing that leads to our self-destruction not only has a culture, but as a human race. Living in the information age where any piece of data is at our fingertips, we need to change how and what we learn in schools. Perimeters and Shakespeare are still relevant, but we need to focus on how to evolve the human spirit so that we can take all that we learn and build a utopian world – not one bent on being the best.

Margaret Heffernan’s “A Bigger Prize” should be taught in schools. I often refer to it as my bible not because it preaches, but it teaches how we can grow in alliance and collaboration and still be successful and profitable. It’s not difficult as long as you are willing to give up this notion that being “the best” is worth selling your soul for.

We need to stop focusing on the guns. Let’s turn our attention to what triggers the brain into thinking that picking up that gun is the answer to any problem.

My prayers go out to all the family and friends of the mass shooting in Florida. Let’s work together to make sure this never happens again.

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A Pope By Any Other Name

What’s in a name? Well, before I try analyze a text, be it fiction or not, I investigate the history of the author. What is his perspective on things? Where does she come from and what challenges have led her to this piece of writing? We are all made up of our experiences and our surroundings.

Pope Francis chose his name as a reflection on St. Francis of Assisi. If you haven’t watched Brother Sun Sister Moon, I highly recommend it in order to better understand the pope. He had no desire to be in the spotlight, he sees the Vatican for what it is: human, thus flawed; yet, he demands more of its congregation just as St. Francis. He wants the people running the show to live as followers of Christ the Almighty, not followers of the almighty dollar.

Is Pope Francis perfect? Is any human perfect? No, but in the name of the saint that was disgusted in the riches of the church, Pope Francis shows no fear in calling out the greed and corruption that has spread like a virus throughout the institution.

Listen to pieces of his speech:

I hope that the pope will include women as leaders in the church just as St. Francis did in order to bring understanding to the world that a strong faith does not lie in men alone.

(As an aside, I believe God chose a male to represent Him not because He is male Himself, but a man stood a much better chance being listened to 2000 years ago than any woman.)

 

You Gotta Love It

So, are you gonna love it or list it?

I’m not talking about your home in the fashion of the show of the same name, but the abode in which your soul resides.

Are you going to tweak a few traits and hang ups, or are you going to give up and sell out? Renovating can seem like more work, but there are lessons to be learned in the process that will enlighten you and make you wiser.

Whatever you decide to do with your life, be sure to be kind and forgiving not only with others, but with yourself as well.

I hope you love it!

Let It Be

I do believe that things happen for a reason.

I do not believe that we are meant to know or understand the purpose of these incidents as they happen. It can often be difficult trying to figure out why tragedy occurs or why a selfish egomaniac wins the lottery. Faith means knowing that there is a bigger plan, more than our eyes can see and our mind can gather.

I have exhausted asking “why”; instead, I now try to continue rolling with life’s waves and keep my eye on that light on the horizon that shines for all of us. It’s always a choice as to whether you reach for the hopeful light or turn your back into the futile darkness.

It’s not easy, but we mustn’t dote on the hurt and feed it with venom and hatred. In meditation we can find the spirit and learn to let what unfolds just be.

Be The Bringer Of Joy

The third candle of Advent is lit this week to represent JOY!

Many work hard at achieving monetary gains, higher status in the workplace, being popular and filling in every moment of the day with tasks. How many of us work at finding joy in everything we do?

It’s easy to be jolly when someone cracks a joke or when your favourite song is playing, but can you find joy when things are not going your way? Can you be happy when you’re in physical pain or psychological anguish? Finding contentment and bliss during these trying times takes work.

Here’s some hints on how to find cheer when you need it most:

  1. Have a strong faith. Belief in a greater good will boost your brain and drag you out of self pity.
  2. Do something that energizes you. We all have those things that makes our skin tingle and our souls want to dance. It could be watching movies, going for a jog, listening to your favourite tunes, gardening or climbing a tree. Whatever it is, DO it!
  3. Remind your support group to bring smiles only! Don’t let well-intentioned family and friends bring you down. Tell them you need only good news at a time like this.
  4. Most importantly, think of this list daily so when you most need joy in your life you will naturally refer to these steps.

Joy is contagious so carry it with you where ever you go and spread it around. I’ve never heard anyone complain about being too happy!

Be Prepared

Watching The Walking Dead has reminded me to be ready for any emergency that may occur. I have to consider the equipment and food supplies I might need to have on hand as well as considering the people with whom I trust most to share space and resources. There’s one other aspect that continues to run through the series and I’ve mentioned in a previous blog: the show forces me to examine my own conscious and determine what kind of person I really am. Am I someone who will strive to survive and do what it takes to keep myself at the top of priorities no matter who it hurts, like Merle, or will I uphold a righteous personality and help the weak and needy, like Rick?

This second week of Advent we light the candle that represents PREPARATION. Not much unlike a zombie apocalypse, I need to prepare for the coming of Jesus Christ. Am I living a life of love and peace now or do I think I can wait for my soul to be tested before I begin living as God has asked us? Why wait for a zombie outbreak, or a visit by three ghosts, or my death bed when I can be living as I should today? Am I prepared to meet my maker?

Hmm. Heavy stuff. Yet, this type of reflection is makes my vision much clearer and gives me strength in knowing who I am in order to move forward in this sometimes seemingly scary life.

First We Hope

The first candle is lit on the advent wreath representing HOPE. No matter what denomination you believe in, HOPE is what will keep your spirit going when your body isn’t able.

HOPE is what we turn to when we enter a contest, go to an audition, wait for test results, or walk onto a plane. HOPE is the verb form of faith. Humans hoped for God to send us our saviour, and He did. We light the candle to open our eyes again to the HOPE of seeing God in our lives.

God, Universe, Higher Being – no matter how you imagine the ultimate source of light, clarity and love, we are all connected to this entity. My HOPE is that we can all see the light that shines in each of us – see it in ourselves and in every person that you meet.

Keep HOPE’s candle burning.