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--Max Ehrmann

Desiderata

Go placidly amid the noise and haste,
and remember what peace there may be in silence.
As far as possible without surrender
be on good terms with all persons.
Speak your truth quietly and clearly;
and listen to others,
even the dull and the ignorant;
they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons,
they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others,
you may become vain and bitter;
for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans.
Keep interested in your own career, however humble;
it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs;
for the world is full of trickery.
But let this not blind you to what virtue there is;
many persons strive for high ideals;
and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself.
Especially, do not feign affection.
Neither be cynical about love;
for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment
it is as perennial as the grass.
Take kindly the counsel of the years,
gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune.
But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings.
Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline,
be gentle with yourself.
You are a child of the universe,
no less than the trees and the stars;
you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you,
no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.
Therefore be at peace with God,
whatever you conceive Him to be,
and whatever your labors and aspirations,
in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul.
With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams,
it is still a beautiful world.
Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.

Providence

Acceptance is:full story

"And acceptance is the answer to all my problems today. When I am disturbed, it is because I find some person, place, thing or situation -- some fact of my life -- unacceptable to me, and I can find no serenity until I accept that person, place, thing or situation as being exactly the way it is supposed to be at this moment.
Nothing, absolutely nothing happens in our world by mistake. Until I could accept my humanity, I could not be complete in living; unless I accept life completely on life's terms, I cannot be happy. I need to concentrate not so much on what needs to be changed in the world as on what needs to be changed in me and in my attitudes."

adapted by DonInChelsea

practice acceptance as a key:

Acceptance is a daily task as we live life to our full extent. And the practice of acceptance has many elements we learn as we progress our emotional and spiritual development. Two forms of practical steps to acceptance help us in our daily living.

1. Accepting day to day experiences as they occur, as life offers them to us. When we accept our day, how we feel, why and what we can do about it, we see our part in our daily experiences with others. Acceptance is not blind to our personal choices, merely making sure we respond and not react to what we encounter. Ask how am I feeling, why and what can I do?

2. Accepting long term experiences which affect our daily living is part of daily life. Our past will bring up issues for us, sometimes daily, sometimes less frequently. How we feel about ourselves generally, why and what we can do to let ourselves be free, overcome old denials and just live for this day, this takes time and often support and help from sources we trust.

When I ask myself:

How am I feeling

Why

What can I do

I am asserting my "being here and now", and helps to acceptance of my real situation.

DonInChelsea Blog Global Local
BBC DonInChelsea's A Day in the Life


November 2004

copyright© don oddy

Chronicles November 2004

November 1st 2004

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~ serenity ~

There is only one thing that matters: to understand that nothing matters too much, so long as we keep our serenity and peace of mind.

And of course in my part of the world its Monday. Tuesday for some I know in another hemisphere. I don't forget and I guess neither will they that times have changed so remarkably. Journeys never end, the days slip by and new forms on top of old. The old never quite goes away. Yet we change and for good or bad we recall the best of and the worst of times. Times gone, and I have had a few near misses with endings. Glad somehow to mention I have been as awful as I would ever wish to be, not myself, driven by dark thoughts, confused by silence and rendered useless by imagination.

It is good to recall the harshness, of my treatment of others, the harshness complicated by not knowing. Self inflicted own goals when no one could reach me in my torture. And the torture ended. No more the victim of silent imaginary concerns, beyond me in my powerlessness. Powerless, a new understanding and a letting go of turgid mishaps premised on lesser regards. And regarding and caring, supplant and nurture welcome beginnings.

These past years of shaping and excoriating events enable acceptance and understanding, no bitterness to scab and scar my soul. Gentleness and good sense restored amongst the memories as doubt fades and dawning yet again to emerge different and aware.

Walking with care, attentive to my fellows and cautious with wit and noise, let loose to wander without the fetters of burning sorrow. Loose upon natures thrall, patient, calm, walking across the oceans of this world.

November 2nd 2004

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~ humility ~

bow down to conquer

I am not sure why humility comes to the fore today. It has been a great day seeing people I have met over recent times, by accident and not design. And with great conversation the day has strength and tinges of rawness. It is good to be reminded who I am, what I know and the absurd as well as the humility of life. Now there are crashes around me, and disturbance time to move on in this day to another location, the atmosphere of calm is lost.

A recrudescence of old experiences, sometimes too close for comfort I feel my hackles raised and defences mobilised.

November 3rd 2004

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~ respect ~

The respect you can earn is no lesser or greater than your own self-respect. Therefore, respect yourself and God and the world will respect you.

I suspect a call to equality driving through my thoughts. The surprise is no surprise as the world witnesses the re election of Mr G W Bush. It is fascinating, its like a gamble that we enable events to be influenced by so few. And the billion dollar election process for election to the biggest job in the free world.

I have mixed views, and so do many others. The fix these days is much is not changing, we seem solid in our divided and chaotic world. Maybe as we mature, as nations, as people, then this calamity of activity will form different, without competition in its current meaning. The meaning being losers and exclusion. America is full of smart people, how on earth did it elect a dumb leader? Simple, he is open to manipulation, or so some would think, they will have four years endurance and a lifetime's circumspect reflections.

America, who would want to live there now? Most people I would guess, because it has one thing above all else, opportunity and a semblance of democracy. How we squander our democracy, is our journey, hard won notions of freedom and enshrined and diversity is winning the minds of those the age of majority. It takes time...

November 4th 2004

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~ be light ~

If I allow my mind to carry burdens, I will experience heaviness and become tired easily.

The blame game. Its going on all around us and by us much of the time. They did, we did, what we did was, and so it goes. Blame falls heavy on some and its burden can be carried a lifetime and then unfortunates carry it on again. Blame screams down the centuries as cultures are embroiled defending, and reconstructing blame.

What for? Families become enmeshed, cultures, society, countries in the unnecessary blame we place upon those who are most probably a product of another blame.

Wipe where we can, the blame, and let go the possibilities. The more we let go our blaming behaviour and deal with today, how sweet life becomes. No one forgets what they have done, no one wants reminding of harms way, and no one in their right mind makes us a hostage to ill fortune. Forgiven is magical, forgotten never achievable, hindsight our curative, foresight an unforeseen legacy yet to harvest.

November 5th 2004

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~ be content ~

Wherever I am is wherever I am meant to be, whatever I am doing is whatever I am meant to be doing and whatever everyone else is doing is exactly what they are meant to be doing - this is contentment. If you do want to change where you are, or what you are doing, the first thing is to be content with wherever you are and whatever you are doing right now! Paradoxically that's what attracts opportunities and invitations to be somewhere else! Why? Because you are a living magnet, and contentment is one of your most attractive qualities. And the law of attraction says that according to your dominant thoughts so you will attract the people and circumstances into your life. Being content right now attracts the best possible future.

November 6th 2004

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~ self-respect and regard ~

If you develop your sense of self-respect, then regard will follow you like your shadow.

A strange morning. Off to another part of the Capitol to meet someone and attend a meeting of the fellowship. I have a mixture of emotions. Some there I knew, yet I was unable to speak to them as other business was afoot. It was good to hear from another where the drift of life had taken them. And it was right to feel as I have always inside, about many complicated matters so close to me it still hurts. And another I had help peel from the pavements not long ago and visited in hospital. Strange times these Saturday morning adventures. My mission accomplished and plenty more, not one of the outcomes expected, except one, Just for Today, the world is as it is meant to be, and I am still in it, with a humble heart, strengthening and yielding to the day as it unfolds, just so...

November 7th 2004

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~ old friends - small universe ~

I have many friends from times oft remembered, as my juggernaut of thoughts rumbles. Memories of yester year and this year prick my feelings and unleash happy sad glimpses of times etched into my life compartments. My mind wanders to the nuance, the feeling, less the event, more the excitement felt with every new touch of anotherís thoughts. Climbing amongst the strewn rather than neat wreckage of my minds eye, I have scintillating flashes of happiness. Tinged with filters, some happy reckless thoughts merge and profound sadness oozes for losses over the years. Overlapped with new starts and startled changes, my horizons move afresh to vistas never dreamed.

When I meet old friends, are they, were they ever so, my friends? I suspect they are and were at the time, bands of people thrown together to make something happen. And marvellous happenings, new beginnings and stretching across the breadth of human doings, so many moments to evoke and treasure. The treasure chest, not like Pandora's Box, the treasures of experience, do bring strength and hope, cluttered among sad remnants, where awkward thoughts occur. The night hours where torture captures my insecure moments.

The wonderment not lost to experience, where practice makes not perfect outcomes, for I remain, ever surrounded by the learning of others, I am shaped again, thrown into the thick of life. To explore that which works for me and to move on from that which I cannot fathom... how time changes my innermost thoughts.

I value my friends from the past and I value the similarities which brought us to share extraordinary times, made ordinary by time itself. And so time marches to its own tune, not mine or theirs, to the beat and rhythm of the universe, simple sounding but as complex as the touch of cosmic dust wafting the face of humanity. And humanity basks awestruck to the thrum of nature.

November 8th 2004

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~ why do things take so long? ~

We don't have much of it, its always slipping away, we feel like we need more of it and one thing is for sure, our time expires.

In our modernity it seems so many things are linked together, dependent and necessary. We are obliged to use our time for many things we feel unimportant, a waste of and really not good use of time. The essence I am learning is, the world is not fast enough to run to my clock, that my clock and others time.... others time is slower than mine? No, others have time for themselves and their priorities. Things do run like clockwork when we regulate our time and become aware of others time.

I learned long ago that impatience with people was of no practical value, patience with myself and a weather eye to using time proves very helpful. Every possible hindrance is a moment of reflection, not a demand to be heard. Listen to that inner voice chattering in my head and I find that I don't have time on my hands. A moments reflection puts my world to order, that in due course all elements will fall into place or be discarded.

Time, the one thing I never gave to myself, becomes a friend savoured in reflective moments, evens my perspective and sees me through the day. What a gift my friend time has become.

November 9th 2004

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~ love all ~

Love can never be exclusive. The sun does not choose to shine on some flowers in the garden and not others. Love is inclusive and has many faces - caring, listening, sharing from the heart, just accepting someone for what they are right now, are all acts of love, as long as you seek nothing in return. It all starts with acceptance of yourself - you're just fine as you are right now, warts and all. It's not that you will stay that way for ever - but you might, if you don't accept. The secret key to the greatest door called love is acceptance. First your self, then others (especially the ones you currently resist) and eventually ...all.

I am having morning coffee in central London sat wrapped in writing my diary. A man I know from the street wanders in and sits and asks a neighbouring man at his table for a cigarette. I see the defeated and reluctant man hand over the cigarette. He hears another say to the borrower that he does this all the time. The man takes the cigarette anyway, lights up and then wanders off. The atmosphere is tense with anger.

In my lifetime, I guess the man who asked and the man who gave, they will not be able to change those feelings of that moment. The beggar, he will remain indifferent to his impact and continue requests, the giver, he will modify his thoughts, the heckler, he will remain embittered. And in a second, prejudice is profound.

I was contemplating the plight of the less regarded, the ill, who without physical defect, run a thousand times round in their minds, the trouble they have and misunderstanding of others. I don't anticipate in my lifetime a change in attitude to mental illness, for the prejudice runs hard and cold. Dealing with physical ailments are indeed imaginably hard, mental illness baffles and is unimaginable. Both intense, oft permanent, excluding the afflicted. It is a sadness, and an opportunity, one day there will be change.

November 10th 2004

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~ lightness ~

If the mind is light you will feel carefree, no matter how the body feels.

And in these winter months, the light is needed from within. The dark, it draws in so quickly as the afternoons disappear, and gloom falls. A cheery voice, a bright fire in the grate, soft illuminations help our weighted brows. Quick to grumpy taciturn scuffs with each other, we bundle along. Its a peculiar time of year! Those who pester do so at their peril, those who slow the hurried steps to warmer moments best bite their lip and be slow to speak up if at all, and so the hurry to warmth discloses.

Feels like winters breath has found a northerly bluster, fog, damp and not yet winter crisp, the air hangs heavy, clawing and grimy.

Best wrap up well and face thin sun, watery on the horizon and stoke our inner light with friendly touches, gentle moments, silent prayers of wisdom and a weather eye to guide us home.

November 11th 2004

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~ singularity and risk ~

As we get older, we become less open to life's risks. At least I thought so. Now, less sure and still a single being spinning along in the universe, I realise the singularity we all have. So often we avoid and revamp our inclinations to take account of others feeling, we loose our self, our identity along the way. Or we develop an identity which encompasses our love and sharing with family and friends. Our identity is well known in the context of our fellows, our identity fits with common purpose. Inside though dwells our real identity, so close to touch and so far it feels like a dream lost in time.

For the UK, its a day of remembrance, for those who fought in wars since the end of World War I. Its a sad day across the world and many conflicts are very active. Arafat died this day. So many hopes and aspirations are ground into dust as new thinkers, new warlike and war making factions take up arms to fight for their freedom. Dashing the notions of years gone by, that the world would end persecution and become safer for all citizens.

Sad news indeed, and remembrance too of those who fought on behalf of powerful governments, weak with mistaken leadership squandering life for the sake of their righteousness. Thank God for time.

Our singularity, if we were a phenomenon, which is held to be the final state of matter falling into a black hole might be the sum of our being in this world, as we teeter off into the light or dark. We arrive and thrive in the company we encounter, we leave without that host, a vessel of memories forgotten till the transition may permit. As we leave abruptly, we hear that our lives flash before our eyes. It is a most comforting notion that we take with us every nuance of living, compressed in a flash of time, and nothing forgotten. For if it were greater than the spectacle of life caught in a split second, what room would we have for an after life, an eternity. Comforting to know that these building blocks of memory so captured in the minds eye form part of an infinite journey to understanding on a cosmic scale.

If we open our mind to the risk, to the new moment, to comfort from familiarity, to wonder at this spectacular day, we transcend the age of reason and join in with the irritable power of destiny.

November 12th 2004

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~ stability ~

The foundation of stability is looking after my mind - making it peaceful, loving and thoughtful at all times.

We are touched everyday by things closest and with a world so connected we become aware what we do in our part of the world directly impacts across oceans. So hard then to keep house clean in ones own head, and be alert to our family, our community and the world. It is oft forgotten, that keeping our inside clear, our thoughts and feelings with our nearest and dearest is the much of the answer we can understand. We keep our side of the street clean, and the rest is outside our control. Keeping oneself together is as much any one of us can do. By example we encourage, by example is the best we must expect. We will not change anyone or anything, we can just change ourselves. Free will is a precious element we all have, tread with care if you would bend the will of others...

November 13th 2004

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~ cleanliness ~

The most important places to keep clean and tidy are my mind and heart. If I allow thoughts to flourish that I wouldn't want to see the light of day, I can never have any real self-respect. By starting each day in quiet reflection and pouring positive, loving thoughts into my mind, I gradually clean out cynicism and unkindness.

A beautiful November morning, the Sun as strong as it can be, creeps across a low arc this time of year. The thin air, the cold, the crisp breath we take snatched in case it burns. Wrapping up well to keep warm, the elements of nature make us sleepy, taken back to times when sleeping away the cold was all we had. Celebrations of the season take shape, as reminders of faith appear. How strange these times are as the world connects more closely, each in the global village share more thoughtfully, feeling the touch of distant eyes. What we see, as hope emerges, are similarities, understanding dimming differences with the passing of time.

November 14th 2004

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~ get busy ~

Instead of losing sleep over whatever I have done wrong, let me get busy doing something right

November 15th 2004

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~ humility, humiliation and power ~

Humility is one of the most powerful gifts we learn. Humility is the gift of being able to see our errors of action and in acknowledging them, changing our behaviour and moving on, we grow as individuals. Our humility enables great depth of learning about ourselves, our adoption to new possibilities and ways of living.

Humiliation is quite different. The error of our ways pointed out by others, where the power is placed upon us leads to pronounced feelings of inadequacy. Humiliation is the product of others over us. Humiliation often leads to anger, frustration and the desire to even the score over time. Humiliation damages, it has no long term useful purpose, it enables schisms and untold abominations of behaviour. Humiliation is the path of aggression and lends others to be hostage to ill fortune.

Power, a most important asset is best kept, utilised and welded when outcomes empower all and not just a part of or one side. Power ill used embodies humiliation, destroys understanding and causes inevitable conflicts with lethal effects.

Oft people look for understanding, and humility best kept, owned and shared as a person sees fit will yield great personal discovery and serve as example to others. Pointing out defects of others, however well meaning will inevitably lead to loss of esteem and bitterness. Take care with human hand, enable humility in oneself and leave others to derive their own by your example.

Humility is an inner peace, a learning to befriend oneself even in times of utter despair at outcomes least desired. Humiliation born out of righteous indignation, it serves no one, fills our lives with egocentric aggressiveness. Breaking down and humiliating people is seen by some to be their gift of learning. Take care from whom we learn and take care of yourself. Judging others is wilful, extremely disturbing to inner peace and smacks right back in full measure. As humbly we walk and share our travels, so too others learn the similarities of paths to peace. The rod of righteousness delivers equal blows until humiliation is seen to be the master of no one, the hurry of indignation and the devil on everyone's back. Care of our inner humility is just your concern, a powerful gift shared by our own example, not making an example of others...

November 16th 2004

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~ belief power ~

If you are ready to alter some of the current outcomes in your life then you will need to start with your beliefs. There are many categories. First there are 'fatal beliefs' - "I can't, I'm not able, I never will." These are the beliefs we have about ourselves, that set the boundaries and limitations of ourselves. Then there are 'blocker beliefs' - "My kid is stupid...my boss is an idiot...did you see that crazy person?" These are beliefs about others and, for however long they last, they block the flow of energy in a relationship. They are bricks in the walls we build between each other. Then there are 'survival beliefs' - "Get what you can while you can....there is not enough to go around...you have to look after number one." These beliefs would have us live in fear and anxiety, otherwise known as insecurity. We can choose our beliefs. But first we may have to unchoose the ones that have crept in over the years, now living comfortably 'below stairs' and seem to be part of our inner furniture. If you want different outcomes in your life, change your beliefs first. Clean up down stairs!!

November 17th 2004

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~ Anger ~

Anger is the wall of sorrow that one must remove to enter the sphere of happiness.

It is so easy to become angry. As we grow in life experiences, we know what is right for us and we know emphatically what is wrong. So easy to access our stored notions of right and wrong. So easy to become angered at another. They simply might be doing the right thing for them, but that right thing is against our grain, our nature our preference.

And often anger comes with the thoughtless act of another. Stepping on our toes, letting us boil inside. It is so easy to be wrong footed and the anger eats inside.

We have to pause, to sit still or take a breathe. We need to get perspective on what angers us. We need to be open to why our anger bites so deep.

Letting go that frightful feeling, accepting the way things unfold and connecting ourselves to options and diversity, opens doors to serenity. So often our biting pang can be quelled simply with a breath, with an understanding, seeing through anotherís eyes, their intent is and never was to serve a volley of pain. So our feelings abate and calm returns, with opportunity to change our perspective, or remove ourselves from harm, leaving harm elsewhere or despatched to history and our mind clear for our day.

Not easy to pause and reflect, far easier and serene over time, let our anger go and enjoy the day.

November 18th 2004

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~ maturity ~

Your ability to recognize the specialities of others makes you a natural leader.

November 19th 2004

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~ combination and balance ~

I am learning about combination and balance all over again. This is no surprise, I knew it would be necessary. The Learning and experiences over the years are lessons maybe only learned in maturity. From an early beginning where there were no boundaries and the world felt limitless in my eyes, experience teaches me how I may limit myself.

True, we cannot be all things and master of them all. And we have choices and potential to excel and to master art, trade and commerce, every imaginable endeavour man might encounter. We must endeavour too to find a balance in all aspects of living.

Balance is not the natural path, balance is confined to the spread of experiences we have open at any time in our lives. It is finding a balance in the day, and a balance of foresight based on experiences. There are many who apply visionary techniques to achieve a given path and stick with their learning and mastery. We are often tutored to the future potential we will embrace, and fall short. Not just because we may not be imbued with the gift of achievement, but that achievement is limited to a few who can be placed in our desired role and career.

We do have boundless potential for ourselves. Something oft lost in the pursuit of happiness expressed by others. Chasing others dreams and what society sees as valuable may undo our boundless potential and mastery of self.

Self mastery is a combination, a formula worked out for oneself. Self mastery combines the day we have before us, the minds eye to the possibilities. And especially the enjoyment fulfilled in the present as we build a future.

Future, the unknown may be long and rewarding. The present delivers reward and fulfilment, self worth and contentment. The future may be moments, or decades, don't forget the present and active, demonstrable delivered and absorbed.

Balance is finding ones own unique formula, a combination of trust in ones openness and feeling.

the present perfect ~ perfectly present

November 20th 2004

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~ humanitarian ~

a person promoting human welfare and social reform

Every day we are confronted with the appalling truth that in many places on this planet there is suffering we will find hard to understand.

No single person who has humanitarian feelings inside them will ever want to see harm come to innocents. And a true humanitarian would wish to persuade those who make war with each other that they have not lost their humanity, and there is opportunity.

As individuals we are powerless over much larger forces for good or bad. Yet we can find and keep faith with our own humanity. We do not need to close our eyes to this chaotic world, we do not need to be feel guilt at others decline into war. We can keep faith with ourselves.

We may order our thoughts and feelings, we may consider and reflect on the world as we would wish, free of war and free of deprivation. We need only keep in mind these notions of what is humanitarian and ensure we live to these beliefs through our actions.

In a world so angry and so drained by perpetual chaos, we may ensure as individuals, our feelings and actions speak by example. Living a consistent life dedicated to peace and harmony is seen by others and absorbed slowly and surely, even tho' it may take generations. We may not eradicate or stop conflict, we may not have opportunity to slow the war against ourselves, we do have our inner sense of belief which guides us and our community towards peaceful existence.

Kindness will prevail, even if we take centuries. One day when the world is balanced with God and Nature, will Man walk the earth and see beyond the stars.

November 21st 2004

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~ A Frenchman speaks of Imperialism ~

Being an Englishman, sometimes wrapped in the warmth of my small yet significant life, I hear words which brush like paint to a canvas, to dry as a permanent reminder of history. It was not just a concern raised to our English nation, it was suggested that America had also adopted an Imperialistic approach to world politics.

I was not at all surprised that our small Island and America so omnipotent would attract a gentle repost and a reminder of our historical Imperialism. It was a Frenchman who said it, Chirac, and with a sting I recognised it, this notion of our world order and righteous behaviour so entrenched in our English heritage.

Without doubt we are challenged, and we should feel the brush of truth, as nerves send angry feelings, tempered with fear and most likely defiance, because we feel our taint to past, present and future history. We are culpable as a nation at war on terror, slipping back to old ways, supported by a rapacious nation hungry for vengeance, America.

I hope we hold our nerve and reflect and look to our misshapen notions of righteous war on terror. For we have unleashed shock and awe, followed by a shift to aggression and inhumanity the equal of those who make war as terrorists.

So quickly we descend to brutish acts of war. Now aggressor and insurgent forces have equality in their barbarity.

We might learn a thing or two. When rocks and barbaric aggression are wealded thus, the outcome is severe and never forgotten. Never in this millennium, as our global world records every moment, every nuance, every action of the conniving Trickster, whether he wears Religious attire or the Uniform of righteous politician, they will be exemplars.

Mendicants who turned our world to folly and near ruin.

November 22nd 2004

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~ the unexpected ~

When I am looking for solutions, I must always be ready for surprises.

Solutions often look familiar and we seek reassurance of what we know. Our surprises I guess come from an open mind, an inquiry into the unknown. We don't know what we don't know. Who would have thought we could record events on plastic and play them back instantly? Who said we would never fly?

Are we close to fabulous science creating opportunity and understanding? Most likely, yet its most likely man will determine the agenda forevermore, unless something or someone is recognised as more important. Now what or who might that be? Our planet?

November 23rd 2004

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~ persuasion ~

The act or process or an instance of persuading is as much we can really hope when we express our inner preferences of living. Often we wish for, think we have a right to expect and a whole host of notions about the world and what it may have for us. We want things from life, often we don't need these things from life.

Wanting leads to awkward notions of getting what we are due. In the the beginning we may adopt persuasion to get our want met. And as children we use our feelings to express basic needs, and to an extent those things we want more of.

Our life experiences will teach us what works. Our need for control often makes us determined to make our world our way. Control like any desire is often greater than we can achieve. To control our world is fraught with disappointment. Our desires can become unrealistic and our chasm between what is and what is wanted often is so great we retreat and harbour ill conceived notions and fantasy about the possible.

If we are able to understand our ability to persuade to an extent, be content to balance our wants and needs, we will find a brokered harmony.

If we regard ourselves as powerful over others, we may find discontent for ourselves and others. For persuasion is one thing in finding that balance, power over others will leave all parties unhappy and powerless as time catches us in our folly and leaves us breathless with discontent.

For in general we are powerless over people, we have persuasion in our skills of life, and a notion of balance serves all and is master of none.

November 24th 2004

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~ think big ~

Rise above little things. Be a big thinker. You are what you think. So just think big, believe big, act big, dream big, work big, give big, forgive big, laugh big, image big, love big, live big. Carry that list and you'll start feeling big. Be a believer and you'll be an achiever

Big is right size thinking, big is as big as it is. Sometimes we feel less than we are, we feel that the importance of me is smaller than others. This estimate of our bigness is directly related to our feelings of self worth. Everyone is big in their own way. Some have bigness thrust upon them, that is bigness to lead and to show by example. Never forget that your bigness is the equal of any others. Because someone can fly, means they have wings, we all have wings, its just that we don't see them always, when others do!

November 25th 2004

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~ thought vibrations ~

Every thought creates vibrations. Vibrations are like sound waves or radiations. No obstacles, no hurdles can stop them.

We never stop thinking and feeling. Onward, rapacious and delving, our thoughts tumble in our minds eye. Putting them in order to express and share is the most pleasurable gift we have. Feelings are the most difficult elements to share, they belong to us, to share our feelings involves personal risks. We may feel reticent to express our strongest feelings, too close to exposing our true nature. We may reflect and not share them in case we are thought less of by others and often the sharing of feelings might feel immature, especially to those of us who can be deeply hurt, and run the risk of ridicule.

Yet they are felt inside deep and powerful. Our feelings are our essence and their expression is liberating. As we learn to express we achieve balance, no pressure or stress and a freedom of mind to deepen our understanding of our true nature.

Taking a step forward to feeling and expression is a risky business, not taking the risk however, may be more costly to reaching our own truth and peace of mind.

November 26th 2004

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~ resentment ~

a feeling of indignant displeasure or persistent ill will at something regarded as a wrong, insult, or injury

Resentments occur, they are there. We get them from time to time, we can hold them close and nurse them, we can let them go and be liberated, its a matter of choice.

We are not so perfect in our feelings. We can often compare our situation with others and fall down inside when we feel we don't measure up to another. In our smallness we harbour resentful feelings.

In seeing the world, if we say to ourselves, the world is just the way it is meant to be right now, and everyone in it is in their place, we open up an understanding.

Its a simple understanding with our place in the world and everyone else. Its capturing the moment of now, right place right time and right for now. We may choose to move and change ourselves and our outlook. We may let go of others notions of how they would want us to be, and most of all stop looking for something outside us to fix a resentment we may feel.

Choosing to let go resentful feelings is liberating, giving us space to grow. Our growth of acceptance as how things are, and our options, enables others to change as they will, and we change and follow our own path enabling us to live now and move to our own rhythm of life..

November 27th 2004

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~ experiencing silence ~

where there is stillness there is depth.

When our minds are full of moments remembered its so hard to find the inner quiet where we are peaceful in ourselves. So many experiences tick by with a clock as long as life itself, adding piquancy to treasures stored. Every experience a priceless trinket to add to our powerhouse of understanding the world.

Every experience we feel gives depth to that blank unfilled mind we are equipped to fill. Feelings are so enriched, with moments of high drama, to the least significant and sometimes in the detail we are lost to our true nature. Nature fashioned us, nurture enriches us.

Our balance and depth comes from all life experiences, those which give pleasure as do those which burn our very essence. Without pleasure we cannot measure the burn, without the burn we cannot comprehend the pleasure. So life enables and informs us of the familiar of life.

Stillness is time to recollect the experience to add and broaden depth of feeling and thought. Reward in the stillness is time in reflection, spent understanding our life and moments deepening texture and context.

Silence, our greeting to remembrance and fancy. Emptiness, space to let our imagination soar and a roar into the echo of time.

November 28th 2004

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~ co-operation ~

co-operation comes when there is both love for the task and trust in the special part each person plays.

November 29th 2004

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~ wellbeing ~

the more I develop the habit of noticing goodness, the more my own sense of wellbeing rises.

Keep a weather eye to goodness, its always there, the right thing, the glimmer of hope. Even when invisible to us, it shines on, and on, lest we forget, darkness will pass

November 30th 2004

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~ seeing friends ~

Friends come in all shapes and sizes. And they have so many different ways of looking at the world. I realise more that as times goes by, the company I keep helps me see the world with different eyes. As seen by me, and seen by them, ever present are the subtle changes in outlook.

Often my world as I see it, its limited until, with exasperation sometimes, a whole new view opens and enables me to comprehend everything in a new light.

I realise the eyes I have are decades old, seeing so much and filtering the world to my view. So happily as I listen and see events from fresh perspectives I get enrichment beyond my wildest dreams. So broadened , outlook shifts and moves, we break the mold of prejudice and greet diversity with respect.

And so very Zen in times like these,

" the usefulness of any vessel,
is in its emptiness "

Now I get it! Again and again....

Copyright © Don Oddy
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--Rudyard Kipling

IF

If you can keep your head when all about you
Are losing theirs and blaming it on you,
If you can trust yourself when all men doubt you
But make allowance for their doubting too,
If you can wait and not be tired by waiting,
Or being lied about, don't deal in lies,
Or being hated, don't give way to hating,
And yet don't look too good, nor talk too wise:
If you can dream--and not make dreams your master,
If you can think--and not make thoughts your aim;
If you can meet with Triumph and Disaster
And treat those two impostors just the same;
If you can bear to hear the truth you've spoken
Twisted by knaves to make a trap for fools,
Or watch the things you gave your life to, broken,
And stoop and build 'em up with worn-out tools:
If you can make one heap of all your winnings
And risk it all on one turn of pitch-and-toss,
And lose, and start again at your beginnings
And never breath a word about your loss;
If you can force your heart and nerve and sinew
To serve your turn long after they are gone,
And so hold on when there is nothing in you
Except the Will which says to them: "Hold on!"
If you can talk with crowds and keep your virtue,
Or walk with kings--nor lose the common touch,
If neither foes nor loving friends can hurt you;
If all men count with you, but none too much,
If you can fill the unforgiving minute
With sixty seconds' worth of distance run,
Yours is the Earth and everything that's in it,
And--which is more--you'll be a Man, my son!


August 14th 2006

A month in Recovery

This link to my birthday, and the start of my diary on "30 days in recovery," this follows my journey over a month in my fellowship, Alcoholics Anonymous.

Unedited and written raw, no revisions or re-writes. Just as it happened and without prejudice.

Obsessions

fear of fear?full story

"I did feel the need to speak to a couple of people after the meeting to allay their fears of some things medical and what it means for me, a person who has some experience strength and hope to share about precisely those medical fears as they come along. And why?

Well because I have had some medical scares along the way and have ongoing medical conditions. I donít shout or complain too loudly about my medical conditions. For the record they fall into three categories. First I am in recovery from addiction and have been sober for some time, measured now in years. Second, I have clinical depression, an ongoing medical condition which has been around for most my adult life according to professional experts, and is now treated. And third, the one which makes life even more haphazard is Type 1 diabetes."