Make the Ordinary Come Alive

Buttercup
Do not ask your children

to strive for extraordinary lives.
Such striving may seem admirable,
but it is a way of foolishness.
Help them instead to find the wonder
and the marvel of an ordinary life.
Show them the joy of tasting
tomatoes, apples, and pears.
Show them how to cry
when pets and people die.
Show them the infinite pleasure
in the touch of a hand.
And make the ordinary come alive for them.
The extraordinary will take care of itself. 

By William Martin, The Parent’s Tao Te Ching: Ancient Advice for Modern Parents

Thank you, David Lose.

Second post: Card version

Blue Sky

What’s up? 
One colleague constantly asks me: What’s Up? 
Being English is my second or maybe third language, I take this question literally.  I look up and the response I give him is: the ceiling, the light, the air blower or anything that’s above me.  He seems to get a kick out of these answers. 
Yesterday, we were outside and he asked me the same question.  And I look up and said: blue sky. 
Yes, 26 straight days of blue sky, hardly any clouds in the sky.  I love the blue sky but I cannot tolerate being in the sun.  
I would think coming from a tropical place close to the equator would make me immune to the sunshine hoping that the dark pigmentation of my skin will deflect all the UV rays.  It does but I’d sooner be in the shade. 
In the meantime, the grassy area of the board is covered with white bodies trying to soak up the sun. 
I hope they are wearing Sunscreen. 
 
 
This post is inspired by Claudia ~ July Peace Post.

July Peace: A letter

Dear Ann:  Please repeat your column. The Ten Commandments of How to Get Along with People.  I read it every day for years whenever I opened the medicine cabinet, and as you can see, my copy is faded and torn. – Faithful in Florida. 
Dear Florida:  Here it is.  Thanks for asking. 
1. Keep skid chains on your tongue.  Always say less than you think.  Cultivate a low, persuasive voice.  How you say it often counts more than what you say. 
2. Make promises sparingly and keep them faithfully, no matter what the cost. 
3. Never let an opportunity pass to say a kind and encouraging word to or about somebody.  Praise good work regardless of who did it. 
4. Be interested in others: their pursuits, their work, their homes and their families. Make merry with those who rejoice; with those who weep, mourn.  Let everyone you meet, however humble, feel that you regard him as a person of importance. 
5. Be cheerful. Don’t burden or depress those around you by dwelling on your aches and pains and small disappointments. Remember, everyone is carrying some kind of burden. 
6. Keep an open mind. Discuss but don’t argue. It is a mark of a superior mind to be able to disagree without being disagreeable. 
7. Let your virtues, if you have any, speak for themselves. Refuse to talk about the vices of others. Discourage gossip. It is a waste of valuable time and can be destructive and hurtful. 
8. Take into consideration the feelings of others. Wit and humor at the expense of another is never worth the pain that may be inflicted. 
9. Pay no attention to ill-natured remarks about you. Remember the person who carried the message may not be the most accurate reported in the world. Simply live so that nobody will believe him. Disordered nerves and bad digestion are a common cause of back biting.  
10. Don’t be anxious about the credit due you. Do your best and be patient. Forget about yourself and let others “remember.” Success is much sweeter that way.
Article I kept

Article I kept

 

May Monthly Peace ~ Peace is like a river….

Sit back, relax, breath in and out and let the music sink into your being as you watch the following Art that depicts peace.

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Peace be with you                                                  
Pax Tecum
Assalm Ayakhum
السلامعليكم
que la paix soit avec vous
שלוםלהיותאיתך
la pace sia con voi
мира будет с вами
สันติภาพจะอยู่กับคุณ
vrede zij met u
Friede sei mit dir
शांतितुम्हारेसाथहो
damai dengan Anda
平和はあなたと一緒に
pokój z wami
la paz sea con vosotros
和平与你同在
Barış seninle olsun
kapayapaan sa iyo
ειρήνη να είναι μαζί σας
amani na awe nanyi
امنآپکےساتھ
Rauha teille
 
 
 

Forgiveness in Action – March Monthly Peace

The monthly Peace Challenge for the month of  March 2013 is about Marching Towards Forgiveness. 
Forgiveness is just a not a word for me.  I can only forgive through action.  I can think about it, I can meditate about, I can wish about it; none of these would work for me.  I can only show it.  And here is a great story about forgiveness. 
As John Paul II took the hand of his would-be-assassin, he showed us that a Christian must forgive his enemies, even when they do not want forgiveness. 
One of the bullets that struck John Paul II remains in the crown of the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary at Fatima, Portugal. 
 
By Brother Randall J. Meissen, LC
4/27/2011 JohnPaulMoments.com (johnpaulmoments.com) 
ROME, Italy (John Paul Moments) – On December 27, 1983, as John Paul II sat in a bare, whitewashed jail cell of Rome’s Rebibbia prison, he was unprepared for the question voiced by an unshaven prisoner to his side, “So why aren’t you dead?”  
Why aren’t you dead? 
Death had appeared all but certain to bystanders when three bullets fired by Turkish gunman Mehmet Ali Agca tore through the pope’s flesh on May 13, 1981, staining the pope’s white cassock with deathly scarlet. 
Ali Agca was a professional assassin, he had aimed at close range, and he had aimed well.  But somehow, the bullets missed lethal targets, one grazing the pope’s right elbow, and another deflecting off his left index finger before passing through his abdomen, a fraction of an inch from a major artery.  
By John Paul II’s assessment, “It was a mother’s hand that guided the bullet’s path,” and permitted that “the dying Pope. stopped on the threshold of death.”  The assassination attempt had taken place on the feast of Our Lady of Fatima, and the pope had no doubt that his survival was due to the intervention of the Blessed Virgin Mary.  
In gratitude, the Pope gave one of the deadly bullets to the bishop in charge of the shrine at Fatima, Portugal.  To this day, that bullet remains in the crown of the statue of the Blessed Virgin Mary housed at that shrine. 
However, as John Paul II sat at the side of his would-be-assassin, Ali Agca expressed fears that this Lady of Fatima might come after him next.  The pope stated the contrary; he himself had come to forgive, not to harm.  But Ali Agca did not ask for forgiveness.  
Thus, as the pope took the hand of the gunman, he showed us that a Christian must forgive his enemies, even when they do not want forgiveness.
 
Source: Catholic.Org

Pretty in Pink

We need you. 
Yes, You. February 27, 2013 is PINK SHIRT DAY.  Wear Pink. 
What is Pink Shirt Day? 
Pink Shirt Day is inspired by two grade 12 Nova Scotian students in 2007 who decided to take action after witnessing a grade 9 student being bullied for wearing a pink shirt to school.  The students bought 50 pink t-shirts and encouraged schoolmates to wear them and send a powerful message of solidarity to the bully. Six years later, the Pink Shirt Day campaign continues to raise awareness and provide education and funds for anti-bullying programs in BC and Western Canada. (source: CKNW  and CBC), 
Support, stand up and be counted. 
Pink Shirt, pink tie, pink ribbon, pink shoes, pink hair, pink tutu, you name it. 
Wearing pink is showing your Love, Acceptance, Respect and to STOP any negativity towards one another.  I am pretty in pink.  See for yourself. 😀 

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 Pink is a Peaceful Colour.  Pink is Action.  Action speaks louder than words. 
Come and Join me in this Peace Movement.
 
Check these out:
Make a Noise
VSB: Massive Pink Day Dance
VSB: Pink Day stronger than ever
Vancouver Giants: Flash Mob Hockey night
Peace by acting – summer4soul
B4Peace 
 

Gifts of Hope

A homeless 13-year-old Filipino won a very prestigious award for his commitment to improving the lives of fellow street kids. Cris “Kesz” Valdez, who lived off a trash dump and slept in an open tomb for the majority of his childhood, was awarded last year’s International Children’s Peace Prize in The Hague on September 19, 2012. 
 
Gifts of Hope
For his seventh birthday, Kesz didn’t want any presents for himself. Instead, he wanted to give something to other street children: Gifts of Hope. That same year, Kesz started his own organization, Championing Community Children, aimed at giving street children hope and showing them that they can take their future into their own hands. Every week, he and his friends go to underprivileged communities to teach children about hygiene, food and children’s rights. He even takes things a step further, by teaching children how to teach each other. He has so far helped more than 10,000 children in his local area.   Source:  International Childrens Peace Prize. 
Kesz was presented with the prize by Desmond Tutu.  According to Desmond Tutu, Kesz is a deserving and inspiring example of “a new voice for the voiceless”. 
Spread this video
          Spread hope
                     Spread peace 
Peace by acting – summer4soul
B4Peace

Friday Meditation (38)

The Master held that no words were bad if they were used in an right context. When he was told that one of his disciples was given to swearing, he remarked, “Profanity has been known to offer spiritual relief denied to prayer.” — Anthony de Mello, SJ 
MORSEL:   If you judge people, you have no time to love them.  —  Mother Teresa 
BONUS MORSEL:  Watch your thoughts; they become words. Watch your words; they become actions. Watch your actions; they become habits. Watch your habits; they become character. Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.     — Frank Outlaw 
Desert Wisdom  Nouwen/Nomura

Desert Wisdom Nouwen/Nomura

One Love, One Heart

On the way home last night, I went to Church for Lenten blessing.  It’s just like Christmas on Ash Wednesday.  It was a crowded service.  I can only assume we came to Church to be redeemed and be forgiven for all the “sins” we have committed in our thoughts, words and deeds. 
I went to be reminded that I am a mere mortal being, impermanent on this Earth and to receive the sign on my forehead.  This sign is given by the Priest.  He dipped his thumb in an ash, made a sign of the cross on my forehead and told me “Remember that you are dust, and to dust you shall return.”  This line is derived from the story of how God made Adam, from a pile of dirt. Then I went home with a dirt mark while people stare at me with puzzled look.  And I just smiled. 
Meditating while walking and what came up to mind is the heart.  Is the heart the most important part of the body?  How come I have only one heart?  I have two hands, feet, eyes, lungs, ears; a pair of lungs, left and right hemisphere of the brain, etc.  It must be valentines, I brush off my thoughts. 
It’s a good thing that they came up with Valentine’s Day to distract people from the history of Valentine.  Personally, it’s my father’s death anniversary.  We will have a Celebration of Life but I won’t be able to make it due to work obligations.  I know, it’s only once a year.  Father will understand.  I do keep him in my prayers. 
My offering to you for Valentines is this heart: 
St. Francis of Assis

St. Francis of Assisi

Peace be with you.  Seeker

Fasting or Feasting (40)

For Catholics, today is Ash Wednesday, first day of Lent.  It is a period of reflection living Lent.  It is a time of prayer.  It’s about dying to our self, all that negative attitude and thoughts. 
In one of my retreats, Lent was defined as:
L – Lets
E – Eliminate
N – Negative
T – Thoughts 
Having said that, I learned to use soft words, less on exclamation point to make a point, bite my tongue.  For those who are familiar with cognitive behaviour, this is what they teaches in the course.  It all makes sense to me. 
This period is not all about me; it’s all about God whoever you conceive him to be, from Abba to Zen.  They said God lives in us.  Can you see the reflection of God in another person?  Or let’s not even mention God.  Can you see the goodness of a person? 
You see, I believe that we are all inherently good. 
Since you told me in my post Tell me and I will tell you mine, I will tell you the title of this list: Fasting and Feasting.  I choose Feasting.  Instead of giving up, I will give in and listen to the prompting of God. 
I will leave you with something to think about, a poem: 
“I shall pass this way but once; any good that I can do or any kindness I can show to any human being; let me do it now. Let me not defer nor neglect it, for I shall not pass this way again. “   Etienne de Grellet  (1773-1855); Quaker missionary
 
 Something to read:
We can make a difference right now
A Genie in a bottle or 12 steps program
Kindness of a stranger
 

Show and Tell

This is in response to Daily Prompt: Teachable Moment. You have to learn a new skill. Do you prefer to read about it, watch someone else does it, hear someone describe it, or try it yourself? 
From time to time, at work, we are cross trained and switch duties.  
At the beginning of this year, I switched duties with someone in our team.  As for teachable moments, all of the above is how I learn.  Just reading the “how to manual of procedures” doesn’t cut it, because the manual is written after the fact that it has been tried. 
Even people in higher level, when I explain a certain process to them, I’m asked “show me”.  If nobody shows me the proper process, I am bound to make mistakes at work.  And I could easily say “not my fault, I wasn’t trained or nobody told me”.  I dislike saying this statement; therefore, all of the above.  Show and tell; then read the manual. 
I just remembered a beautiful poem about when children learn and here it is: 
Children Learn What They Live 
If a child lives with criticism, he learns to condemn
If a child lives with hostility, he learns to fight
If a child lives with fear, he learns to be apprehensive
If a child lives with pity, he learns to feel sorry for himself
If a child lives with ridicule, he learns to be shy
If a child lives with jealousy, he learns to feel guilt
BUT
If a child lives with tolerance, he learns to be patient
If a child lives with encouragement, he learns to be confident
If a child lives with praise, he learns to be appreciative
If a child lives with acceptance, he learns to love
If children live with approval, they learn to like themselves
If a child lives with honesty, he learns what truth is
If a child lives with fairness, he learns justice
If children live with recognition, they learn to have a goal
If children live with sharing, they learn to be generous
If a child lives with security, he learns to have faith in himself and those about him
If a child lives with friendliness, he learns the world is a nice place in which to live 
WITH WHAT IS YOUR CHILD LIVING
 

Source: Circle of Moms

 

R.U.L.E.S – Blog for Peace February 2013

In my site, there is no badge on Bloggers for Peace because I did not join.  I mentioned to Kozo, if it’s okay to write just about it.  Request accepted.  
I am not much of a joiner, follower or a member of any kind of organization.  I am not even a registered member of the church I go to.  The reason being, my belief is we are all One Body, One Mind.   By default, I am a member, no need to sign up. 
Whew, now I have said, I feel peaceful. Ah…. 
A few years ago, I volunteered as a Big Sister for one of the students at False Creek Elementary School.  My little sister’s name is Megan.  We were sisters for at least three years. 
What I want to touch upon is how I valued the school’s R.U.L.E.S.  It stands for:
R – Respect
U – Understanding
L – Learning
E – Education
S – Safety
The school has a Code of Behaviour: Keeping our school safe, healthy, happy and a productive place to learn. These are basic rules that elementary students understand.  It is a basic training on growing up as a future peacemaker. 
I remember when I was in elementary, we were taught Good Manners and Right Conduct in a public school.  The title of the program is different from today’s education but in essence it’s the same principle.
Since religion is not part of the curriculum in a public school, it teaches peace and compassion.  Recently, I received an e-newsletter about children’s choir.  I’ve asked for permission if it’s okay to share it. Request granted. 
In my own personal opinion, we have to teach peace early to our children.  I don’t have any children.  Megan, my little sister, was the only child I became closed to at the school and we had so much fun in our peaceful ways. 
Here’s the video of the children singing just one candle for peace.
 
And here is my candle for everyone.
 What does it take to be peaceful articles:
Love is the answer
A call to service

Tell me and I will tell you mine.

A week from now, Wednesday, February 13, 2013, is the beginning of abstaining from what we like most for 40 days and 40 nights. 
When I ask the kids what they will give up, they normally choose chocolate, candy, pop, television, Facebook (right!), etc. 
On a higher scale, Patricia from Called by Joy provided this list to give us other ideas. 
Give up worry – trust Divine Providence
Give up discouragement – be full of hope
Give up bitterness – turn to forgiveness
Give up complaining – focus on gratitude
Give up pessimism – become an optimist
Give up harsh judgments – think kind thoughts
Give up hatred – return good for evil
Give up negativism – be positive
Give up anger – be more patient
Give up pettiness – become mature
Give up gloom – enjoy the beauty that is all around you
Give up jealousy – pray for trust
Give up gossiping – control your tongue
Give up sin – turn to virtue
Give up giving up – hang in there 
Let’s pretend for the sake of this prompt, more importantly,  for the sake of Daily Peace, what will you give up?  Tell me and I will you mine.
Hang in There

Hang in There

This is in response to Daily Prompt: Open ending.  Come and join us, it’s fun.

Spread the Word

The word is Acceptance. 
It doesn’t take too much to become excited when it comes to children of the world especially the students. 
The evening news the other night caught my attention and I immediately went on Global TV on-line to get the link.  Shared it on my Face Book and the next thing, my friends are commenting and sharing the video.  The video has now gone viral according to the news. 
First thing I did at work was shared this to my peers.  And Diana responded saying that her daughter is somewhere in that news.  Oh gee, Diana, tell me more.  Not much to tell because she did not attend Hockey Night in Canada.
I am very proud of these young generations for having the courage to dance in the largest crowd and wear pink to promote Anti-Bullying. It’s coming up soon next month, February.  I am not so sure of the exact date.
School is not just all about studying, the Board also teaches the kids the basic of life so that they may learn to be compassionate, kind, loving to any a few.  I am hoping these students will create a peaceful generation.Enjoy the video and here’s the Global TV News link should you want to read all about it.
 
 Global TV BC – Vancouver School Kids Stage Anti-Bullying Flash Mob at a Giant’s Game. 

A Call to Service – On Peace

As part of human process, there are times it’s difficult to have an inward peaceful disposition.  If that is the case, for me, I look up to others and listen to what they are communicating to me. 
I listened to JFK’s famous Inaugural Address.  It was on this day, January 20, 1961.  And I quote “And so, my fellow Americans: ask not what your country can do for you—ask what you can do for your country.” courtesy of Britannica.  To hear it, click on JFK delivering his inaugural Address. 
This speech is equally applicable to all nations, not just USA. 
I played this over and over to truly deeply understand based on my upbringing and personal belief.  I zeroed in on words that are meaningful to me: 
  • Prophet summons us
  • Call to Service
  • For all mankind
  • Rejoicing in hope, patience and tribulation
And I translate these to:
           God Calls me to be of Service For All Mankind.
           Rejoicing in hope with patience even in times
           of tribulation.
With this in mind, I part you with a Peace Prayer of Saint Francis of Assisi.  He was just a man whom the Prophet Called him to be of Service for All Mankind, always rejoicing the Glory of God. 
Peace Prayer

Peace Prayer

 To listen to the melody play the YouTube.  It was recorded at the birthplace of Francesco in Assisi. Italy. 
 
 
Related Links:
Britannica.com: John F. Kennedy
Biography of Francesco di Bernadone born on 1181 by Wikipedia
Huffington post by: Bansi Kara – A Prayer for Teachers
St. Francis, Friend of Muslim Sultan of Babylon
Notes on Peace by Seeker
Delicate minds about being Peacemakers
World Peace Conference – Culture of Peace by Louise Diamond
We Can Make A Difference-Right Here, Right Now by Kozo
January Post for Peace by Grandmalin
B4Peace – Love thy Neighbor by sarahneeve
Peace be with you today and all days by Tracy
Bloggers4Peace -Everyday Gurus

Monday’s Peace News Captured on Video

Share is the word I instill on the children in order for them to become giving or eventually selfless when they grow up.  Share your toys, share your food, share your clothes, and more sharing. 
One thing I have noticed ever since I joined the computer age is the “share” button.  The feeling of “I think it’s not so bad being to be in this age after all.”  I happen to like sharing and giving. 
I re-opened my Facebook account this year because I feel left out.  My family and relatives are now all connected in Face Book.  My intention is to make this site active to share my faith and to keep the faith alive in our family. 
One day my nephew shared a YouTube about “the good in people were captured on video”.  Isn’t that wonderful?  I love good news. 
And now it’s my turn to pass it on to you to spread Peace on Earth.  It will be the best 1:36 minutes of your Monday. 
  
More good news:  God loves you.
On this day, 1783 Peace of Paris was ratified.
In closing:
Peace I leave with you; my peace I give to you.
Not as the world gives do I give it to you.
Do not let your hearts be troubled or afraid. ~   John 14:27
In response to Daily Prompt: Ripped from the Headline:  click here for details
 
Related Articles / Links
Delicate minds about being Peacemakers
We Can Make A Difference-Right Here, Right Now by Kozo
January Post for Peace by Grandmalin
B4Peace – Love thy Neighbor by sarahneeve
Peace be with you today and all days by Tracy
Bloggers4Peace -Everyday Gurus
World Peace Conference – Culture of Peace by Louise Diamond