Photo via Beliefnet
It’s been quite some time since I’ve shared what I’ve been up to over on Beliefnet, so today I thought I would do a link round-up to all of my posts there since I began writing back in January! I’m very excited about my May contributions and will be sharing those soon as well!
One of the most confusing and conflicting truths that I’ve come across on my spiritual journey is the idea that we are all one while at the same time we are all individual souls that have come here to live a human life and experience humanity in this form.
Let me repeat that….
We are all one.
Our souls are individual in the sense that we’ve come here to learn/teach a specific lesson(s).
Carolyn Myss touches on this in her book, Sacred Contracts, and sure it makes sense, but it’s still confusing to the mind. I guess, that’s the problem – trying to use the mind to grasp something that can truly only be understood by stepping outside of the mind-chatter.
I work hard to do this; to step outside of myself and observe without judgment and labeling, but a learning obsession (even when it’s about spirituality!) is a learning obsession, and that uses the mind.
The mind wasn’t always the enemy it can be today, and lately I’ve been thinking a lot about evolution. Modern evolution.
I mentioned to a friend this morning that I believe that our modern technology that has brought so much awareness to the global concerns occurring such as poverty and human rights is a part of our evolution. On a global scale many are growing more compassionate and striving for equality for all (in every sense of the word.) We are beginning to understand the true meaning of oneness and dissolve geographical boundaries.
The man-made environmental issues that plague us are another form of our evolution. As a species we’ve made some grave errors, and they need to be corrected if we are to sustain here on earth. The threats to our oceans and our food supplies are very real and I’ve heard the term “evolve or die” used many times before – harsh but many argue true.
Our health is making us evolve too. As humans we like to look outside of ourselves for the answer, and it’s hard to accept that we are alone responsible for our health. Our food choices, what we put on our skin, and how we nurture our spirits.
I’m really beginning to understand that our physical health is directly linked to our personal growth and the two go hand in hand. Sure one can exist independent of the other, but when the two meet magic can happen.
I’ve experienced it myself and am still going through it with my son. My health and spirit directly effect his health and spirit. He’s making me question, and challenge and ultimately, grow.
But right now I’m convinced that physical health is the new path of spiritual Evolution.
Last week I stumbled on an interview with Marianne Williamson and Marie Forleo and was once again, struck by how well-spoken and thoughtful Williamson is. Of the many spiritual authors out there Williamson is one of the very few who mash up Spirituality and Humanitarianism. Personally I believe the two go hand in hand, so I am always eager to hear her perspective and learn from her.
If this were three years ago, I may not have been as open to her work – she uses the Christian terminology that is rooted in the metaphysical text A Course in Miracles; namely, Miracles, Prayer and God, (not to mention the word Divine is in the title). This would have scared me off at one point, but I urge readers out there who are not used to using/hearing Christian terminology not to dismiss it because it has truly valuable lessons.
If there is one word I could use to describe this book, it would be this one: succinct.
Williamson utilizes every sentence to its maximum potential, and I love her for it. It’s right to the point, but at the same time it makes an impact.
This book is an important one that I wish was mandatory for all. I don’t know one person who doesn’t have some sort of money-related issue. Whether it is judgments of those who have money, fear of not having enough money, or uncertainty about how to make money, this book covers it all in perfectly built layers intertwined by prayer.
Williamson uses lesson from ACIM and real life situations as examples of how we hold ourselves back from abundance and how fear ultimately derails us from this path. As I listened to the audiobook (a short 3.5 hours), I found myself pausing frequently to take in her words. It’s been a long time since I’ve had this experience and it was exactly what I needed. In fact, I purchased a hard copy so I can highlight away and study further.
The Law of Divine Compensation is a gem, and we’d all be doing ourselves a favor if we picked up a copy, regardless of what our money situation or belief system is. And I love it so much I’ve decided to give away a copy.
Giveaway is now closed! Congrats to the winner Chris!
(Disclosure: All my thoughts & opinions, and giveaway provided by TCP)
Many were blindsided by this event, particularly Canadians, many of whom felt deceived by the Joe Fresh brand. Unlike the era of Nike and the Gap being at the forefront of child labour accusations, something still fresh in many of our minds today, Loblaw has nowhere to hide. Within moments, Twitter, Facebook, and texts were flying out spreading the word, and the Joe Fresh Facebook page was booming with responses of shock and dismay from consumers.
Today, the CBC reported that Loblaw will be compensating the families of those who were killed, and the company has met with the Retail Council of Canada to discuss changes. They released a statement saying, “We are committed to finding an approach that ensures safe working conditions, drives lasting change in the industry and [helps prevent] other tragedies.”
From where I am sitting, it seems like Loblaw got the message from its consumers. They know that they are practicing business in a time where any error in judgment large or small can easily come back to hurt them in the long run. I don’t believe for one second that Loblaw as a corporation is concerned about the health and safety of workers in developing nations. Not for one second.
I do however, believe that they understand that we as consumers do care, particularly Gen Y’ers. In fact, corporate social responsibility is near the top of our list when it comes to making purchasing decisions. So really, it doesn’t matter if the shareholders care, it matters that they understand that we care.
This situation with Loblaw is a perfect of example of how powerful our purchase power is collectively, and how a corporation will move toward progress when presented with no other option. With the many obstacles we as a society face in trying to make change, from food laws to changes within the education system, our money is our most powerful asset.
We make the decisions with our money here in North America, and it isn’t enough that companies greenwash, or pinkwash or simply donate to philanthropic causes; these companies need to be truly responsible and held accountable for every aspect of their businesses.
The days leading up to Mother’s Day always seem to serve as a time of reflection for me.
Last year I waxed poetic about how lucky myself and all of the Mother’s in my life are – for being given a fair shot at happy, healthy, and full lives simply because of the country in which we were born. How much we have to be grateful for, and how we need to direct that gratitude into helping other Mother’s throughout the world.
This year is no different.
I’m sitting here on a warm and sunny Sunday afternoon, pausing an interview with spiritual author Marianne Williamson and business guru Marie Forleo, and thinking Marianne just hit the nail on the head in her talk when she said that women truly have an instinct within us that is a force so great that we could end extreme poverty in the world.
As a witness to the evolution of the “Mommy Wars” over the years, this idea has struck a chord in a way it hasn’t before. Imagine we could redirect all of the judgments we have toward one another and the comparisons we make and put that energy into something greater?
If we could harness all of the energy put out there that is doing no one any good, and instead, band together and focus on one task – ensuring not one more child has to die from starvation – it could be done.
On this note, there are two things I want to share today.
A lovely blogger, Lacy Stroessner of Living on Love has created this gorgeous print and is donating half of the funds to Edna Adan Hospital in Somaliland. You may recognize the name if you read the book, Half the Sky.
Here are some details of the hospital:
“The health of the people of Somaliland is among the worst in Africa, with one of the highest Maternal and Infant Mortality rates in the world. Every year, one baby in eight dies in infancy while nearly 4000 Somali women die in childbirth. This tragedy can be attributed in large part to the long civil war which brought about the death or departure of nearly all of the country’s trained health care professionals.”
Please consider buying a print for a Mother in your life! You can order online here.
Lastly, there are many individuals out there who have signed up to participate in the World Food Program’s Living Below the Line challenge. For five days these bloggers will be literally living on $1.50 for food per day – literally living below the line of poverty. This is an intense challenge for those of us who live on much more than that per day, and admire those who are partaking in it. If you’d like to support the cause please consider donating to The Mission List’s team here.
You can follow along with those participating by searching the hashtag #BelowTheLine.
(Editors Note: The following is a contribution from Krishann Briscoe.)
As a mother I am passionate about investing in my babies. I realize that they will grow up become contributing members of society. They might grow up to be leaders, innovators, and philanthropists — agents of change.
The potential I see in them is limitless.
And yet the same potential I see in them can be seen in the faces of children across the globe. Because I know that my children will not grow up and walk the world alone I realize the value in investing in all of our children not just the ones we tuck in bed at night. And by investing in all children I am investing in the future.
April 25 is World Malaria Day 2013. It is a day in which a worldwide effort is made to reflect on the advancements made in the efforts to prevent the spread of malaria and other infectious diseases. And with reflection comes the desire to look ahead to a future, concurrently developing a plan of action so that the time might come when malaria is no longer a threat to the lives of our children.
According to WorldMalariaDay.org, malaria deaths in Africa have been “cut by one third within the last decade” and in numerous countries impacted by malaria there has been a case reduction by 50%. Additionally in countries where access to malaria control interventions has improved most significantly, overall child mortality rates have fallen by approximately 20%.
That information is huge and filled with hope and promise much like our world’s children. However, with less financial support for malaria control the advancements made are “under threat.”
That means that there is still so much work to be done in order to ensure that the goal to eradicate Malaria becomes a reality.
When we see that change is being made and statistics seem to be in our favor it is easy to get comfortable and pull out of the fight; however, the threat is till very real and the desire to keep fighting ever present. How you fight, is up to you.
Whether it be raising awareness and/or donating funds there are numerous ways we can unite with the world April 25th and after as we look to the future, a future in which all children have the chance to grow up and carry the torch for the various nations that make up this amazing planet we all call home.
For more on World Malaria Day visit worldmalariaday.org.