ten poems to set you free- here’s one.

Self-Portrait

by David Whyte

It doesn’t interest me if there is one God

or many gods.

I want to know if you belong or feel

abandoned.

If you know despair or can see it in others.

I want to know

if you are prepared to live in the world

with its harsh need

to change you. If you can look back

with firm eyes

saying this is where I stand. I want to know

if you know

how to melt into that fierce heat of living

falling forward

the center of your longing. I want to know

if you are willing

to live, day by day, with the consequences of love

and the bitter

unwanted passion of your sure defeat.

 

I have heard, in that fierce embrace, even

the gods speak of God.

 

FANTASTIC poem! It sums up the message I have been trying to spread; trusting yourself, just like the poem The Journey by Mary Oliver.

And I bring up this poem in particular because it is the first in a series of ten, as the title of the post suggests. It is contained in a novel named ten poems to set you free (click the title to purchase on Amazon) written by Roger Housden. FANTASTIC book! The very first poem got me hooked!

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ten poems to change your life- here’s one.

The Journey

by Mary Oliver

One day you finally knew

what you had to do, and began,

though the voices around you

kept shouting

their bad advice-

though the whole house

began to tremble

and you felt the old tug

at your ankles.

“Mend my life!”

each voice cried.

But you didn’t stop.

You knew what you had to do,

though the wind pried

with its stiff fingers

at the very foundations,

though their melancholy

was terrible.

It was already late

enough, and a wild night,

and the road full of fallen

branches and stones.

But little by little,

as you left their voices behind,

the stars began to burn

through the streets of clouds,

and there was a new voice

which you slowly

recognized as your own,

that kept you company

as you strode deeper and deeper

into the world,

determined to do

the only thing you could do-

determined to save

the only life that you could save.

 

FANTASTIC poem! It sums up the message I have been trying to spread; trusting yourself.

And I bring up this poem in particular because it is the first in a series of ten, as the title of the post suggests. It is contained in a novel named ten poems to change your life (click the title to purchase on Amazon) written by Roger Housden. FANTASTIC book! The very first poem got me hooked. If you go and seek out the book (which I highly suggest) you’ll know it from the blue cover with the white pitcher and the inside cover:

This is a dangerous book. Great poetry calls into question not less than everything. It dares us to break free from the safe strategies of the cautious mind. It opens us to pain and joy and delight. It amazes, startles, pierces, and transforms us. It can lead to communion and grace.

Through the voices of ten inspiring poets and his own reflections, the author of Sacred America shows how poetry illuminates the eternal feelings and desires that stir the human heart and soul. These poems explore such universal themes as the awakening of wonder, the longing for love, the wisdom of dreams, and the courage required to live an authentic life. In thoughtful commentary on each work, Housden offers glimpses into his personal spiritual journey and invites readers to contemplate the significance of the poet’s message in their own lives.

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What If Money Was No Object? -Alan Watts

What If Money Was No Object? -Alan Watts

By Gav on January 8, 2013

Alan Watts (1915-1973) was an English philosopher and writer who played a large part in popularising Zen Buddhism in the west. He gained a wide following after moving to the United States where he published numerous books on Zen and Eastern philosophy. During the 60s and 70s he toured extensively on the college lecture circuit and became a celebrity among the growing youth movement. Watts had over 25 books published and recorded over 400 lectures, many of which have found a new audience on YouTube

This is another example of my readers educating me. I had never heard of Alan Watts before so thanks to everyone who suggested I look into him and adapt one of his quotes.

– Watch the great YouTube video this quote was taken from.
– There’s a ton of Alan Watts stuff on YouTube, some of his lectures have even been animated by Trey Parker and Matt Stone.
– You can also get an Alan Watts app for the iPhone containing all his lectures.
– The official Alan Watts website.
– I’m finally on Google+, check out the new Zen Pencils page.

School Is a Prison For Your Mind

School Is a Prison For Your Mind

School is a prison for your mind

CATEGORIESHEALTHNEWS JANUARY 16, 2012

And what is a good citizen? Simply one who never says, does or thinks anything that is unusual. Schools are maintained in order to bring this uniformity up to the highest possible point. A school is a hopper into which children are heaved while they are still young and tender; therein they are pressed into certain standard shapes and covered from head to heels with official rubber-stamps.

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The Myth Of The Absent Black Father

The Myth Of The Absent Black Father

The_Myth_Of_The_Absent_Black_Father

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently published new data on the role that American fathers play in parenting their children. Most of the CDC’s previous research on family life — which the agency explores as an important contributor to public health and child development — has focused exclusively on mothers. But the latest data finds that the stereotypical gender imbalance in this area doesn’t hold true, and dads are just as hands-on when it comes to raising their kids.

That includes African-American fathers.

“Every Good Lie Has At Least 80% of the Truth In It”, Just Like Disney’s Frozen

“Every Good Lie Has At Least 80% of the Truth In It”

Disney’s Frozen is a perfect example.

To start off, I would like to explain to you the title of this article. Previously, I wrote an article with the same title, click here to see, but it was about one of my favorite game series, Dragon Age.

“Every good lie has at least 80% of the truth in it” is something my father has been telling me for as long as I can remember, but he also taught me, “All you have is your word; you break that, you’ve got nothing.” To some, that would seem contradictory, but, in reality, he was teaching me how to spot the “good lies”. If you feel a little off when someone tells you something, but it also sounds like it could be true, you’ve probably just found a “good lie”. They 80/20’ed a lie. They gave you enough truth for the lie to be believable.

That’s why I am writing this article. I feel this same 80/20 can be done with and applied to fiction. There is entertainment in the 80/20. A lie is a lie, sure, but then I think about the graphic novel AND the movie V for Vendetta. While as separate entities, they are forces that can stand alone, but looking at them as a whole is also valuable. They talk about truth, lies and, the most interesting topic, using a lie to tell the truth. They talk about revenge and payback, too, but the truth and lies discussion is more important for this article.

My favorite quote from the movie, said by Evey Hammond is:

My father was a writer. You would’ve liked him. He used to say that artists use lies to tell the truth, while politicians use them to cover the truth up.

To those of you who have seen this movie, “A man after my own heart,” indeed. If you have not seen the movie OR read the graphic novel, you should. I do not think you will understand the rest of this article any less, but they are good to have in the background as you read.

Disney’s Frozen is the perfect example of an 80/20; of a “lie”, a fiction, being used to tell the truth.

What possible truths could be in Frozen with all that magic? The magic is the 20%. Everything else is possible.

“Huh?” you might ask. Well, here are 10 of the truths [the 80%]:-

  1. Children believing everything their parents say and doing everything that they are told even if the advice doesn’t work? Possible.
  2. The king and queen of a kingdom keeping a secret to the point of isolation? Possible.
  3. Isolating their children so they can’t blab said secret? Possible.
  4. A [trading] partner wanting to know you secrets in order to exploit them? Possible.
  5. Someone being so desperate for attention that they’ll marry someone after meeting them once? Possible.
  6. A prince (anyone, really) exploiting someone’s desperation for attention to marry into the [royal, wealthy, powerful] family? Possible.
  7. A prince planning to kill the reigning royal to gain control? Possible.
  8. Someone being “dumb” enough to chase after their sibling when they run away? Possible.
  9. An entire kingdom/country turning on their leader after one mistake? Look at Clinton.
  10. Your parents not always being right? All but parents are aware of this possibility.

Everything on the list are possible real life events that are taking place in the fiction. And I didn’t even mention the [trading] partner attempting murder or the prince winning over a kingdom to the point of being allowed to commit treason. The entire movie really only has two things that could be the 20% (if that): Elsa’s magic and the trolls.

What truth could the “lie” of Elsa’s magic and the trolls be trying to tell? The trolls are a little more obvious. For some odd reason, we need trolls to remind society that we need to love. Oh. Wait.

All the trolls talk/sing about is love,

Only love can thaw a frozen heart.

But Grandpappy troll does bring up a point about the head being “easily persuaded”. We see that a lot don’t we? Especially with point 1 where Elsa grows up doing nothing but what her parents tell her despite the fact that IT ISN’T WORKING and no one ever thinks of finding a new tactic.

But not only do the trolls discuss love, they also discuss fear. Grandpappy troll tells Elsa, after she accidentally hits Anna in the face, that fear will be her undoing. Again, “Only love can thaw a frozen heart.” It is reiterated in detail when Anna goes back to the trolls again, this time for frozen heart.

Throw a little love their way and you’ll bring out their best!

That’s the only line I ever remember after listening to the song, which isn’t a bad thing because it sums up my entire point about the trolls. Their part of the 20% is used to diminish fear and spread love! That’s easier to do with a bunch of trolls and a catchy tune than a human being telling us over and over. Unfortunately.

Now, with all this in mind; all this 80/20 business and using the lie to tell the truth, I have a question: taking a look at the time period the movie takes place in, what secret could Elsa and her parents have been trying to keep that would cause the same amount of chaos the blizzard in summer caused?

Need a hint?

What community has been going nuts since this movie came out? Hmm?

Elsa could have been GAY!

Think about it: look at the time period. Being homosexual would have been considered a sin just like it is to some people today. But back then? WHOA!

But that’s how the 80/20 pulled most of us in! No one would have watched the movie if it was 100% possible. Especially not a Disney movie. Disney, whether they realized it or not, used the 20% to deliver a truth; only love can thaw a frozen heart.

If your friend; relative; child is gay and you reject them because of it, you have a frozen heart. And only an act of true love, accepting them for who they are, will thaw said frozen heart.

Let them “Let It Go” and you will all be free.

Every good lie has at least 80% of the truth in it. And this particular “lie” was used to tell the truth.

Impressive, don’t you think? Let us all know in the comments below!

The 10 Lies We Tell Ourselves

The 10 Lies We Tell Ourselves

The_10_Lies_We_Tell_Ourselves

“The worst lies are the lies we tell ourselves. We live in denial of what we do, even what we think. We do this because we’re afraid. We fear we will not find love, and when we find it, we fear we’ll lose it. We fear that if we don’t have love we will be unhappy.” ~Richard Bach

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Violence against women—it’s a men’s issue

Published on Feb 11, 2013
Jackson Katz, Phd, is an anti-sexist activist and expert on violence, media and masculinities. An author, filmmaker, educator and social theorist, Katz has worked in gender violence prevention work with diverse groups of men and boys in sports culture and the military, and has pioneered work in critical media literacy. Katz is the creator and co-founder of the Mentors in Violence Prevention (MVP) program, which advocates the ‘bystander approach’ to sexual and domestic violence prevention. You’ve also seen him in the award winning documentary “MissRepresentation.”

To learn more about TEDxFiDiWomen, whether to attend, volunteer, speak or sponsor, please click on the following link! http://tedxfidiwomen.herokuapp.com/

To learn more about Jackson Katz, please visit http://www.jacksonkatz.com

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized.* (*Subject to certain rules and regulations)