Sunday, August 29, 2010

Mojo Monday ~ Blessing

A blessing, (also used to refer to bestowing of such) is the infusion of something with holiness, divine will, or one's hope or approval.

Here is a beautiful blessing I heard for the first time this weekend.

Pueblo Blessing

Hold on to what is good
Even if it is a handful of earth

Hold on to what you believe
Even if it is a tree that stands by itself

Hold on to what you must do
Even if it is a long way from here

Hold on to life
Even if it is easier to let go

Hold on to my hand
Even if I have gone away from you

Blessings appear in many different forms and exist in most, if not all, cultures.

Here is a beautiful Irish Blessing.

Lastly here is an artistic depiction of a blessing by Visionary Artist Willow Arlenea.

 The artist's description of the painting: "An elder woman is blessing a young woman during a coming-of-age ritual. While bathing in the cleansing springs words of advise and support are offered to her. The elder woman channels cosmic energy from the source through her bowl of flower petals. This energy spirals around the maiden, protecting and supporting her through this transition."

Write a blessing for something or someone in your life and share it here.

Perhaps you already have a favorite blessing and you would like to share it.

How do you feel you have been blessed?

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Mojo Monday ~ Women's Equality Day * August 26th

On August 26, 1920 Congress passed the 19th Amendment and women finally obtained the right to vote. The 19th amendment states "The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any state on account of sex."

The passage of the 19th Amendment was due to the many women and men who worked diligently within the Women's Suffrage movement. A powerful film that captures a small segment of time within the movement is called Iron Jawed Angels.

Here is a clip from the film.

In 1971, Rep Bella Abzug led the effort in Congress to officially designate August 26 as Women's Equality Day.

According to the website of the National Women's History Project (

"The observance of Women's Equality Day not only commemorates the passage of the 19th Amendment, but also calls attention to women's continuing efforts toward full equality. Workplaces, libraries, organizations, and public facilities now participate with Women's Equality Day programs, displays, video showings, or other activities."

This resolution passed in 1971, designating August 26 of each year Women's Equality Day:

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have been treated as second-class citizens and have not been entitled the full rights and privileges, public or private, legal or institutional, which are available to male citizens of the United States; and

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have united to assure that these rights and privileges are available to all citizens equally regardless of sex; and

WHEREAS, the women of the United States have designated August 26, the anniversary date of the passage of the Nineteenth Amendment, as symbol of the continued fight for equal rights: and

WHEREAS, the women of United States are to be commended and supported in their organizations and activities,

NOW, THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED, the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, that August 26th of each year is designated as Women's Equality Day, and the President is authorized and requested to issue a proclamation annually in commemoration of that day in 1920, on which the women of America were first given the right to vote, and that day in 1970, on which a
nationwide demonstration for women's rights took place.

Consider doing something special to celebrate Women's Equality Day this Thursday, August 26th.
Share what you plan to do or return after Thursday and leave a comment sharing what you did.

What are your thoughts about women's equality?

Had you already seen the movie Iron Jawed Angels? Did it have any impact on you?  Did it change the way you thought about voting?

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Mojo Monday ~ Love

Love may well be one of the most written about, most discussed, most sung about, most pursued experiences of all time.

Take a moment to consider what the Beatles thought about love in this video:

Or consider what Engelbert Humperdinck has to say about love in the song Love Is A Many Splendored Thing:

Even the Bible provides a very detailed description of love:

How do you define Love?
Have you experienced one or more love stories in your life?
Do you have a favorite quote about love? What about a love poem?
Have you every written a love letter?
Have you read any good books about love?

Leave a comment and share your thoughts.

There is an author named Gary Chapman who has written a number of books about love. A few of the titles are: The Five Love Languages: How to Express Heartfelt Commitment to Your Mate, The Five Love Languages: The Secret to Love that Lasts and The Five Love Languages of Children.

Gary Chapman worked as a marriage counselor for more than 30 years and during the course of his work he identified five love languages: Words of Affirmation, Quality Time, Receiving Gifts, Acts of Service, and Physical Touch.

Whether or not you are in a relationship or are a parent it can be interesting to explore and discover your own love language. Do words of affirmation from a friend or loved one make you feel loved? Perhaps someone spending time with you is how you prefer him or her to show their love. It could be that flowers or a thoughtful gift mean a lot or someone doing a kind act and helping you with something touches your heart. You could also be a person who needs hugs and kisses to know that someone loves you. Quite often most people are a combination of two, three or more. Learning the love language of those around you can be very helpful in understanding what others need in order to feel loved.

I leave you with two final thoughts.

One is a beautiful quote by Shiloh Sophia McCloud and it graces many of her works of art and publications ~ "May love be at the center of all our choices."

And the last is my belief that there is something greater than us all in this world. There is some spirit, magic, energy, what have you, that connects us, that links us, it is that Red Thread that is woven through the Universe, it is that which links us to one another, and when we are connecting to that higher place of consciousness, permeating throughout that magical woven web of spirit, is LOVE.

Remember always that…

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Mojo Monday ~ Art

All art requires courage. ~Anne Tucker

Art is defined as:
1. Human effort to imitate, supplement, alter, or counteract the work of nature.
a. The conscious production or arrangement of sounds, colors, forms, movements, or other elements in a manner that affects the sense of beauty, specifically the production of the beautiful in a graphic or plastic medium.
b. The study of these activities.
c. The product of these activities; human works of beauty considered as a group.
3. High quality of conception or execution, as found in works of beauty; aesthetic value.
4. A field or category of art, such as music, ballet, or literature.
5. A nonscientific branch of learning; one of the liberal arts.

Art can be viewed very subjectively.  Al Capp, an American cartoonist and humorist, had this to say about one type of art "Abstract art is a product of the untalented, sold by the unprincipled to the utterly bewildered."  That is really just his opinion though, as there are many who would say they love abstract art.

This past year an amazing traveling art show called the Art of the Brick by Nathan Sawaya came to town. 
Nathan creates all of his art using little plastic legos.  The same lego toys that children have been playing with for years.  Some of his creations are three-dimensional and life-size.  Others are more flat, such is the case for the portraits he creates.

I can appreciate many forms of art and I thoroughly enjoyed and was amazed at Nathan Saway's creations. Yet there is some other element that makes art touch one on a deeper level and leads the admirer to really connect with a painting or sculpture or perhaps even piece of music.
I experienced the "WOW" factor when I walked into Shiloh McCloud's gallery The Wisdom House in Mendocino. It is the only word that could come out of my mouth for several minutes. There was an immediate draw to her paintings.
Do you connect with a certain artist, type of art or medium?

Is there something in particular that has touched upon the "WOW" factor for you?Besides Shiloh's art there are a couple other women artists who work touches me on a deeper level. I would like to share a couple of samples of their art.

Queen of Hearts by Melissa Harris

Love who you want.

Dress how you choose.
Eat what you like.
Give your mind a rest and
Let your heart be your guide.

Anything Is Possible by Melissa Harris

Stream of Compassion by Mara Friedman

Open Heart by Mara Friedman

I will be gentle with myself
I will love myself
I am a child of the universe
Being born each moment

To visit Nathan Saway's web site click here.
To visit Melissa Harris' web site click here.
To visit Mara Friedman's web site click here.

Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up. ~Pablo Picasso
Creativity is allowing yourself to make mistakes. Art is knowing which ones to keep. ~Scott Adams

Monday, August 2, 2010

Mojo Monday ~ Fear

“Do one thing everyday that scares you.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience by which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, 'I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along.” ~ Eleanor Roosevelt

"Fear is not something to be conquered or eliminated -- or even tackled, for that matter" writes Harriet Lerner, author of The Dance of Fear. "Instead, we may need to pay close attention to its message."

Another passage from The Dance of Fear states, "We may believe that anxiety and fear don't concern us because we avoid experiencing them. We may keep the scope of our lives narrow and familiar, opting for sameness and safety. We may not even know that we are scared of success, failure, rejection, criticism, conflict, competition, intimacy, or adventure, because we rarely test the limits of our competence and creativity. We avoid anxiety by avoiding risk and change. Our challenge: To be willing to become more anxious, via embracing new situations and stepping more fully into our lives."

The message I take from this passage is that we can't outrun our fears. We can't vacuum them up and throw them away. Fear is part of being human. It is more about what we do with our fears. Do we let them control us? Do we sit in the chair tapping our toes when we really want to cut loose and dance? Do we stay in a daily rut instead of signing up for that class, pursuing that dream job, starting our own business, moving cross country or asking a certain someone out on a date?

What if we embrace our fears and do it anyway? What if we say to ourselves every morning "This may be my last day living. What do I want to accomplish? What do I want to do with these precious 24 hours?"

I have found that taking a risk and doing something that is out of my comfort zone can reignite my creativity, my zest for life and inspire me to new heights. After tandem skydiving I felt incredibly alive and walked on clouds for days. When I boarded a plane to go study in France for a year I was honestly scared, but I was also thrilled to be doing something incredibly different and challenging.

Share an experience that required you to overcome a fear?
Is there something you want to do right now that is daring and risky?
Commit to doing one thing this week that scares you and share what that one thing is going to be!

Activity ~ Visualize that you are no longer afraid. Make a list of things the new FEARLESS you would do. Here are a few ideas:

Go to a hot springs with some girlfriends and dive in the water naked.
Take dancing lessons.
Tell the truth to your family about being molested as a child.
Really belt out a song on karaoke night while sober.
Apologize and try to heal a relationship.
Tell the people who mean the most to you that you love them, while staring them in the eyes.
Ride your bike without any hands.
Take a trip by yourself.
Stand up for yourself when someone is rude.
Apply for your dream job.
Go skydiving!
Ride in a car, the windows down, your hair flying and your feet hanging out the passenger window.