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What’s your spin? What’s your story?

October 16, 2019

 

According to Martha Beck, in “Finding Your Own North Star, 

“You’re inevitably going to “spin” the story of your life, so you might as well spin it in a cheerful direction…tell yourself a lie story in which you, the hero, are primarily a problem solver rather than a helpless victim.

Neither story is the absolute truth; all our life narratives are based on selection and “spin.”

I just came back from France where I competed on the US Wine Tasting Team in the World Wine Tasting Championship held at Chateau Chambord, one of the world’s most impressive castles, located in Loire, France.

Organized and sponsored in part by La Revue du vin de France, the challenge was to taste and identify six white wines and six red wines. We received points if we could identify what kind of grape was in the wine, where it came from in the world and which region in the country,  who made it, and in what year.

The US Wine Tasting Team: Californians Gwendolyn Alley and Sue Hill, and Texans Jacob Fergus and Taylor Robertson.

Read more…

How To Fill Yourself with Hope: Breathe, Take Action, Build Common Ground

September 30, 2019

“The best way to not feel hopeless is to get up and do something.

Don’t wait for good things to happen to you.

If you go out and make some good things happen, you will fill the world with hope, you will fill yourself with hope.”

~ Barack Obama

With so much conflict in the world, in our country, in our communities, and even within ourselves, it can feel hopeless. A place to start is to build common ground between different viewpoints and perspectives. To do so, we must periodically ask the question:

How do we build common ground?

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Victor Frankl: In Our Response Lies Our Growth and Our Freedom

September 25, 2019

 

In these troubling times, we are invited to take action:

“Between stimulus and response there is a space. In that space is our power to choose our response. In our response lies our growth and freedom,” argues Victor Frankl.

“You could say that river cleanup was child’s play compared with the melting of the ice caps—and I would thank you for sharing and get back to doing what is possible. Those who say it can’t be done should get out of the way of those who are doing it,” writes Anne Lamott, author of Bird by Bird, in an essay published this month in National Geographic.

Or,  as Abe Lincoln says, “I’d rather be playing video games.”

Read more…

Fall for Books — Especially Banned Ones!

September 23, 2019

 

Today is the first day of autumn — and the perfect day to fall into the leaves of a book as it is also Banned Books Week!

Censorship leaves us in the dark. Keep the lights on!



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Godin Defines Art, Anzaldua Discusses Art, Art City Displays Art: Portal at Burning Man

September 16, 2019

 

 

A useful definition of art by Seth Godin

Art is a human activity. It is the creation of something new, something that might not work, something that causes a viewer to be influenced.

Art uses context and culture to send a message. Instead of only a contribution of beauty or craft, art adds intent. The artist works to create something generous, something that will change us.

Art isn’t painting or canvas or prettiness. Art is work that matters.

It’s entirely possible that you’re an artist.

Everyone can be, if we choose.

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Is this the real life? Is this just fantasy? Bohemian Rhapsody at Burning Man 2019

September 11, 2019

 

 

“Creative artists … are mankind’s wakeners to recollection: summoners of our outward mind to conscious contact with ourselves, not as participants in this or that morsel of history, but as spirit, in the consciousness of being. Their task, therefore, is to communicate directly from one inward world to another, in such a way that an actual shock of experience will have been rendered: not a mere statement for the information or persuasion of a brain, but an effective communication across the void of space and time from one center of consciousness to another.”

Joseph Campbell, from The Masks of God, Volume IV: Creative Mythology

Read more…

Take Action to Save Earth: Read a Book!

September 9, 2019

“Our heart grows cold,” wrotePope Francis in the 2015 Lenten message. “As long as I am relatively healthy and comfortable, I don’t think about those less well off. Today, this selfish attitude of indifference has taken on global proportions, to the extent that we can speak of aglobalization of indifference. It is a problem which we, as Christians, need to confront.” Angaangaq Angakkorsuaq, an Eskimo-Kalaallit Elder in Kalaallit Nunaat, Greenland, says Only by Melting the Ice in the Heart of Man does Man have a Chance to Change and begin using his vast Knowledge Wisely.”

 

In addition to getting a real strong dose of nature, reading up, finding solutions, and taking action really helps! Read more…

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