Monday, June 8, 2009

What Does God Really Want?

In many a philosophical conversations with people about religion and the Bible's view of animals, I hear many interesting arguments on various sides. The one view point that amuses and angers me the most is the idea that an entity, known as God, put everything on this planet for us to do with as we wish.

The plants and animals are ours to manipulate and utilize however we see fit, without worry or recrimination on the method in which we choose to use. Now, understand this, I am a moderate person, I try not to force my lifestyle beliefs on anyone, because I would not want that done to me, but let us look at this argument objectively.

If you believe in this theory as it states in the bible, do you really believe that God meant for his creations, yes animals would classify as his children too, to live and die in pain and agony? Victims of the numerous cruel animal industries across the world?

Why is the pain and suffering of non-humans so irrelevant to us? Whether you eat meat or not, suffering should not be a plight that is ignored. Once we separate ourselves from another being for any reason, whether for species, religious, cultural, racial, or geographical reasons, we set ourselves on a path of "dehumanizing" them. This path can lead to many things, including genocide.

Maybe "dehumanizing" is an outdated word, because it seems that the compassion we should feel for our fellow man and woman, we should also extend to all species on this planet that share our same fate in the world.

We are all connected, once we see that, the world as we know it will forever be changed. I hope to see that day before my eyes fade, and I move forth from this existence.

Voting for change is not something we only do during elections, but steps we take everyday in our lives to improve the world that nurtured us. A friend said to me today, that the only person who was not 99% self-centered, was Mother Theresa. I disagree with that statement.

Indeed Mother Theresa was a selfless individual. She was most likely not a perfect being, none of us are. She made a choice to see what good she could be to the world. In fact, we all have our Mother Theresa's inside of us. We choose to silence her, because the path is not always easy, or fun, or lead to personal gain as we understand it.

The process to true understanding takes lifetimes, and we are all in different places in our journeys. Enlightenment occurs once we are aware of our place in the journey. Where are you?

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Alright MAC, we get it already!

OK, I get it! Mac is better than PC. If there is any point those annoying Mac ads have drilled into our skulls, it is that. The simple fact is, it may be a better machine, but they still price themselves out of the average person’s budget. Let us also not forget that there are numerous compatibility issues with Macs.

But the main focus of this rant is those ads. I wants to smack the freakish smirk off that pompous twit’s , Mac’s, face. The little twerp is arrogant, and mocking most of the American public.

Recently there was an ad where PC travels into the future to see if he still sucks. All they focus on is that PC still does not work as preferred. No one mentions the fact that PC has the ability to traverse the space time continuum. HELLO??

Mac may have less trouble, but hell, PC has performed a miracle! So, screw you Mac!?

OK, maybe I should not have had that 12th latte. :-p

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Universal Harmonics

If you put forth positive energy it is returned to you. Sometimes small, sometimes not. I personally love those smaller return moments. There is something intimate and gleefully personal in the experience, whether it is you on the returning or the receiving end. For a small moment in time, you have truly connected with another being. Just one, maybe two, but that moment can affect you in the most profound way.

Let me explain based on my own experience. Now please understand, I am NOT discussing this to toot my proverbial horn. I simply wish to share with you the experience. These types of events can happen to anyone at anytime. The trick is to be conscious of those little, yet significant, gifts we receive in life’s unmarked wrapping paper.

One day, I was going to meet a friend at Tysons Corner Mall. I was parked and heading for the mall entrance when I saw these two older ladies inching their way towards the mall and looking about to find a way to get to the appropriate level of the garage.

One of these women was supporting the other who was moving very slowly and with great difficulty. I stopped and asked them where they were heading, and I was informed that indeed the mall was their desired destination. Considering the labored gate of the one woman, I knew the stairs were definitely out of the question, and I could not remember where there was an elevator.

I requested that they wait until I could fetch my car, which was parked only a few paces away from where we were standing. I could drive them right to the overpass from the garage to Macys. From there I could contact the customer service desk and have a cart brought directly to her. After making the call, we waited. Several minutes passed and I asked her to have a seat on the stairs while I kept watch for their arrival.

We spoke while we waited, and it turned out that it was her birthday, and for her birthday, she wanted to go to Tysons Corner mall. They were sweet ladies. During our conversation, I also gleaned that the one woman with limited mobility had suffered a stroke, and that was the cause of her impaired movement and speech. I was late meeting my friend, but it was well worth the delay.

This may be a corny message, but it a message that needs to be shared. The key to fulfillment is not something you will find just in yourself. For this is a universe of balance. No act of kindness is insignificant. To the individual(s) you bestow that kindness, you are a hero.

Positive energy is like a cloak of protection you wrap around yourself, and you will discover that the universe finds a way to send some of that compassion back to you. It is not cosmic payback, but simply balance and harmony working as it should, like an intoxicating dance. I extend my hand. Care to take a spin about the room?

Thursday, March 26, 2009

I have had it! A declaration of FREEDOM!!!!!

Recently I paused for a moment in my “busy” life, and I asked myself, “What am I doing?” I looked around my crowded abode, and I could not understand how things had gotten so out of control.

In our society, we are programmed to want. We want money, a prestigious job, the newest gadgets (Yes I know I was the worst on that front), the greatest car, you name it. What all that boils down to, is that what we really want is for everyone else to think we are important. By having all these things, by rushing around like a mad person in our swanky cars, we appear to be, somehow, more vital. However, this is not usually the truth. This is just a mind game we play with ourselves, and truth be told, everyone might see you as more important if you have all those things, but it will not change how you really see yourself.

That is what I came to realize. All this time I had been striving to climb that corporate ladder, and when I searched for my real motivation, I discovered that I did not really know or understand it at all. I was trying to show the world that I was OK, that I was just as valid as everyone else. That realization floored me. How could I think so little of myself?

For it is not my job, car, or clothes that define who I am, and they definitely do not define who I want to be. I honestly asked myself, when I look back at my life, what do I want to see. I realized that none of those ideals and goals I had for what I considered success, even made the cut. I was not living MY life; I was living the life I thought I was supposed to be living. That ends now.

The fact is; I am tired of playing this game. I do not care if you make more money than I do, and have a Lexus and a 3000 sq foot home in Great Falls. Acquiring things will no longer be my motor. Instead, I plan to achieve the ideals to which I have always wanted to aspire. I want to slice away the unnecessary excess and release myself from the bonds of avarice. I no longer need things to define who I am.

In the past, I based my worth on outside validation at work, etc. I believe this revelation about my life came from a recent hiccup in my upward climb in the corporate world. I hit a wall, maybe two, and it shredded me. It was then I realized why all this crap kept happening to me, and how I could get it to stop. The things that kept falling in my path were a message that I was doing it all wrong and for all the wrong reasons. I had to stop looking to the outside world to validate my life and me.

You might ask yourself, “How does she plan to accomplish this task?” Well, nosey, I will tell you. I have decided to take up a practice called Voluntary Simplicity. This “movement” is not easily definable. It means different things to different people. There are varying degrees of voluntary simplicity. One definition that I think encompasses it best for me is, a lifestyle characterized by minimizing the 'more-is-better' pursuit of wealth and consumption. Adherents may choose simple living for a variety of personal reasons, such as spirituality, health, increase in 'quality time' for family and friends, stress reduction, personal taste or frugality. I would also add environmental impact to that list.

Very soon, I will be ridding myself of the burden of excessive possessions at the Reston Association annual garage sale. I think I will find this endeavor liberating and satisfying on many levels. I no longer wish to receive physical gifts, for any occasion. I think a gift card to Target for every day needs, or a donation in my name, would be more appropriate. I am not saying you have to buy me gifts, this is just on the off chance, you feel like doing so.

There is only one item I am pining for right now, and that is a professional grade camera. I have taken up hobbies again, such as photography, this will be the first time I have done so in many years. It is exciting to want to enrich my life with activities not work related. For so long my self esteem had been wrapped up in work, well no more.

I have always wanted to do my part to improve the world, so I am returning to a love I had not seen in a while, volunteering. I occasionally volunteer at an animal sanctuary in Maryland, and I will be helping the feline rescue group where I adopted my sweet little furry babies (Feline Network in Springfield). It feels good to have a positive influence on this world we currently inhabit. It feels like coming home…. Maybe you wish to join me on this quest, and maybe not, I will keep a warm seat by the fire for you when you are ready.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

The Final Exam

Finally the time has come to face the fear I had been avoiding for two whole years. I figured if I never brought it in the house, I would be safe, but I always knew I would need to stare this demon in the eye and let him know that I was no longer his bitch.

You may ask, to what I am referring? Meat. Now do not get upset, I am not talking of eating the meat. Do not get ahead of me, it is rude. For the past 2+ years I have successfully stayed on the wagon; neither stumbled, nor faltered. It is the result of a lifetime of trying.

Strangely enough, even though I still crave it terribly, I have only had a handful of incidents where my flesh sobriety had been seriously in danger. I continued to make Noah meat based dishes, within reason, but never tackled my drug of choice.

Tonight this will change. Already I can smell the tender roast cooking in the oven, but I feel okay. I think I can endure this "torture." This IS to be the final test to see if my convictions stand strong. If I can make it through with out giving into the temptation, I will have jumped the final hurdle.

If this seems like I am making more of this than I should. You would be very mistaken. Red meat, and shell fish were my biggest vice. So wish me well, loyal readers. Let me rise tomorrow truly free of my addiction to flesh. ;-)

Friday, January 23, 2009

What a Mess!!!

Okay, it is time to get back to what I do best, ranting.

I am positively sick to death of hearing about the Israeli crisis. Everyone has an opinion, and most opinions are valid, but logic rarely figures into these opinions at all. It is infuriating.

I am so done with the media blathering on about the big bad Israelis beating up on the pathetic and defenseless Palestinians. Stand back from your own opinions for a moment, and look at this objectively. The Palestinians are not defenseless; they just lack the skill, and military brains the Israelis have. They ARE shooting like 30 rockets into civilian territory, the fact that they aren’t able to hit more of their desired targets and kill more people, only shows what bumbling idiots they are. What would ANY other country do if a neighbor started shooting rockets at their denizens? What would we do? If Canada started bombarding our cities, I can tell you that we would not just roll over and let them defile us.

I am very sure that Israel knows this will hurt their image, but they cannot let another group of people murder their innocent. Asking them not to defend themselves is asinine. If I were Prime minister, I might have done it differently, sure. Israel has an amazing military, capable of great stealth. I would have sent several stealth teams in at night to kill the Hamas thugs quietly. It would be more likely to get only the intended targets, less likely to have civilian casualties.

On every news channel all they seem to talk about is the Israeli bullies. I would be very interested to hear one of these commentators give one reasonable suggestion of what Israel should do instead of trashing them to the public. Israel must defend its people. If you do not like it, what effective method could you suggest?

I know this point of view may not be PC, but we do not live in a PC and peaceful world. How I wish we did. The fact is, you cannot reason with terrorists. This conflict will not end anytime soon, if at all. If people could look at an issue with a logical mind, conflict would cease. But humans are not that good at disconnecting their emotions from their perception. For this reason, we will most likely always have strife and misunderstanding. Yet I hope…

Monday, January 19, 2009

Tassimo's Away!!!!!

Well, for Christmukah this year, Noah and I received a giftcard that enabled me to get a Tassimo single cup brewer. Let me say this is a fantastical device.

The last two years have been spent drooling at Linen's 'n Things with visions of lattes dancing in my head. There was always some bill, some reason I could not make the "minor" investment in the object of my desire. Finally that cycle has come to an end.

So you may ask (or not, but I will tell you anyway), why did she want the Tassimo and not Keurig or some other single cup coffee brewer/espresso machine/tea maker/hot chocolate device? Well, for one, I had tried it before when they were sampling at the Target, and second, they carry one of my favorite coffees, Kenco.

This coffee, normally impossible to get here in the States, is an import from the good Ol' UK. I tried it when I went to London back in 2001. The most amazing thing is the coffee is INSTANT. I had sworn off American instant years ago because it is vile. This coffee did not taste like instant. It was full bodied and smooth, an absolute perfect cup.

The one problem I encountered, is that importing it into the US was more difficult than smuggling a sex slave who ingested over five grams of heroin as a mule. Then the Tassimo brewer was released. All I did was wish for one. Now I finally have one.

Tonight I christened it, her name is Oh My God, cause I kept saying that over and over. The latte was more like a cafe au lait, but it was a perfect cafe au lait. I have to say that her most impressive feature is the way in which she knows what the drink is, and therefore, how much hot water to dispense.

The coffee, and other beverage making materials, come in something called a T-disc that has a bar code on the top. When you place the disc in the machine, it reads the bar code and dispenses the right amount of water. Man I wish all things worked that perfectly.

It may be endorphin related joy, and it may not last, but for now.... all is right in the world. Thank you Oh My God.