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It's Our Birthday!!

Hi Folks!

It’s our birthday! Our blog is 7 years old today!! We’ve definitely moved beyond toddler stage; in the past seven years we’ve published 513 blog posts and 138 pages of stories and poems and the like, and there’s plenty more where those came from… 😉 In the past seven years we’ve written on a variety of topics, from photography and software tutorials to random thoughts, insightful news, and (of course) Free Hugs. Thanks so much to you for continuing to come and visit and share with us.

November is the beginning of storm season here in Victoria, and it seems the world at large is going through some tumultuous times as well. Still, even storms can bring growth and healing. There’s a saying that one cannot heal a wound by ignoring it; that may be true, but we don’t think it helps much to keep poking at it either. And while there are those who seem bent on bringing forward their own vision of a dystopian future, we leave them to it and celebrate the many blessings of life instead. We’re not alone… in fact we’re the majority. Everyone, no matter their race, creed or beliefs really want the same thing – a safe place to live and raise their families, love, health, joy, understanding.

And so today we wanted to share some stories of those people with you. People who are holding their heads up and doing what they can to bring beauty to the world – one word, one photograph, one poem, one act at a time.

First up, Seth Godin, whose daily blog highlights ways each of us – individually and collectively – shape the world we experience. In his post The powerful seduction of ‘powerless’ he writes:

“If we’re actually powerful, if our voice, our effort and our contribution matter, it’s time to get to work.

This is enervating. It would be so much more comforting if it were up to someone else. Whatever system we are living in or with, it would be nice if it were responsible for what happens next.

On the other hand, knowing that we can connect, publish, inspire, lead, build, describe, invent, encourage and (especially) teach, means that there’s no one better than us and no time like right now.

And if it helps, go find, organize and connect with others who feel as committed as you do.

Of course it’s frightening. But it’s important and it’s our turn.”

Second is HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, who took a moment to remind us of A Message of Tolerance. November 16 was the UN International Day for Tolerance and Sheik Mohammed pointed out that in the UAE:

“While we all respect opinion and discussion shared online, we cannot allow it to spill into intolerance. We do not differentiate between one another in the UAE, nor do we use race or nationality to discriminate against one another; we see all people as equal, as God created us. No preference or merit is given to anyone except for those who work diligently, respect our laws and constitution and contribute to our nation.”

This is a model we can all follow. A Minister for Tolerance sounds like a wonderful idea to us.

Our third example comes from John “Halcyon” Styn, an 18-year veteran of Burning Man. For those who don’t know, Burning Man is a temporary city of 80,000+ people built every year in the Black Rock desert in Nevada. The vision of the Burning Man organization is: “The Burning Man organization will bring experiences to people in grand, awe-inspiring and joyful ways that lift the human spirit, address social problems and inspire a sense of culture, community and personal engagement.” When the festival is over and final clean-up is done every year, there’s virtually no evidence that anyone was even there. In his post Be the Dust You Wish to See John highlighted the actions of several burners who are doing their part to heal a country fractured by the recent election. Among these are a group of people working to “Make America Kind Again” and Paul E. Amori, who is running for Mayor of Los Angeles:

“Times like these require that we do more than sit on the sidelines and escape into our beautiful festival bubbles where we have already created the world we want to live in. We need to help shepherd that world into reality and the only way we do that is by getting involved!”

Our final link here is for an article written by Healing Arts Facilitator Ginny Taylor. In her post A Eulogy for “Get Over It” she describes the angst she felt after the recent election in the US and also the steps she’s taking to move forward:

“A crack. Then light. Then love. It’s the only way I know of how to move forward in this new era I will never get over, cannot ever forget.

Instead, I will get through. So will you.

Together, we will get through by making the cracks opening to the light that will love us through these days. Ours won’t be a perfect offering. But it will be mine, and it will be yours.

Ring the bell. Watch for the cracks. Do love.”

As Amy Oscar wrote, “When drama arises in me, I no longer ask: Whose fault is this? I see that I’ve dropped the thread of love and I pick it up.” Practice Kintsugi as a healing technique, using light, love and healing to fill the cracks you feel. No birthday is complete without candles, but since we don’t have a cake here we can share with you we encourage you to take a moment tonight to look up at the sky. Rather than railing against the dark, focus on the billions and billions of pinpricks of light and know that each one of those is a star. Just like you.

Free Hugs Victoria!!

Hugs,
M&M

P.S. If you’re looking for some good news to share it’s pretty easy to find. Here are some places to get you started.

Good News Network
Happy News
Inspire Media Network
Random Acts of Kindness Foundation
Ripple Kindness Project
The Better India – Positive news. Happy Stories. Unsung Heroes.
Values.com

If you know of more sites providing inspiration and uplifting thoughts and ideas, please leave them in the comments!

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