Beliefnet
A Reason to Smile

On July 7, fresh of watching videos of the murders of Alton Sterling and Philando Castille, I wrote the following post on Facebook (note, if you are offended by those incidents being referred to as murder, then keep reading because this 13619945_1306892279339591_6909013594495857444_narticle is for YOU):

“You know, normally I’m all hugs and light with the things I post. And I do that on purpose; life is hard enough as it is, so I try to post things that will make your day a little brighter and the way a little easier.

But this time, there is no silver lining. This time, as a black male who’s spent his entire life with the knowledge that here in the greatest nation on Earth, the country I love more than anything else, my life is essentially expendable, I have to say something:

Hey All Lives Matter people, wasn’t Alton Sterling a life? Philando Castile?
Where are the protests? Where’s the outrage? Where’s the ANYTHING even remotely constructive?
That’s right. Nowhere. Hypocrites.

Dylan Roof shot up a church and was taken alive.
Robert Louis Deer shot up Planned Parenthood and was taken alive.
James Holmes shot up a theater and was taken alive.
Brock Turner raped a woman, and jail was deemed too harsh a punishment for such a ‘promising athlete.’

Someone like Alton Turner gets executed by two cops ON CAMERA and people can’t bend over backward fast enough to publish his criminal record.

You know what? None of the things he did were death sentences. Those cops didn’t try to cuff him, tase him, pepper spray him, or even club him; two grown men sat on his chest and murdered him.

Good cops should be leading the charge of outrage, but they’re silent. “All Lives Matters” people should be lining the streets, but they are silent.

We live in a country where a black child with a toy gun is shot on the spot, and a confirmed mass murderer gets a trip to Burger King. None of this is new; only the cameras are new.

Pay very close attention to the people who are trying *a little too hard* to justify why these men deserved to die.

“The glaring injustice is there for all who are not blinded by prejudice to see.” -Bram Fischer.””

In the days since, I’ve received several comments and engaged in several conversations about these events, and the horrific events in Dallas, which compel me to say more about these events, and the things we are facing as a society.

The murders of Alton Sterling and Philando Castille
It would seem there was no more to say, since the testimony of your eyes should be sufficient; but considering how many people are still struggling to justify their executions, a few words.

Yes Alton Sterling was a criminal. What exactly on his record constituted a death sentence?
“We don’t know what was in his right hand.”  Unless it was a hand grenade, his murder was unjustified.  Also, I am going on record now to say there was no gun. Why? Because they’d be repeating it constantly as the Officer’s justification.  Philando Castille had a gun he wasn’t reaching for, and they can’t stop talking about it; therefore Alton Sterling was unarmed.

And a side note: The latest bit of propaganda was that Philando Castille was stopped for a bolo that he matched the description of an armed robbery suspect.  Again, no he wasn’t, or that would have been the story from the beginning before the Governor held his press conference.  And second, why would being a suspect be a death sentence?  The law in this country is supposed to be founded on a presumption of INNOCENCE, remember?

As written above, pay very close attention to the people who are arguing a little too hard as to why these men deserved to die.  And one other thing, this man was killed for having a lawful weapon on his person; where’s the outrage from the Second Amendment advocates?  The NRA?  That’s right: Nowhere, and it’s *not* due to ‘not wanting to comment on an ongoing investigation’ since that hasn’t been the benchmark of their communications up until now, has it?

Black Lives Matter vs All Lives Matter
Imagine if the ASPCA was going to break up a dog fighting ring, but a group of counter protesters showed up saying 32b“whoa, whoa, whoa, ALL animals matter.  Why are you singling out people killing dogs?  Cats get run over every day.  And I love dogs; I own a dog!  Stop discriminating against non-dogs!”

Or, a group of people were chaining themselves to a 5,000 year old redwood tree to prevent it from being cut down, and a group of protesters showed up saying “but wait, the polar ice caps are melting, which is going to flood thousands of miles of coastline, killing all kinds of plants!  We can’t save this tree until we prevent global warming!”

Or, a man was being arrested for beating his wife, and the conversation immediately shifted to “what did she do to get punched in the face?  I never burned *my* roast.  What kind of person doesn’t have the house clean before her husband gets home? I was raised to know my place.  And he didn’t beat the children, only her; so he can’t be THAT bad.”

Of course these examples are laughable.  And if anyone started trying to justify why she deserved to be beaten, you’d assume they were at best heartless, and at worst complicit.

The supreme hypocrisy of the All Lives Matter movement is that it should never be used as a counter.  Anyone who truly believe in the sanctity of all lives should be equally outraged by injustice towards blacks as towards anyone else.  But notice how many All Lives Matters rallies there have been in the wake of these recent tragedies, or after the tragedy in Orlando.  That’s right, zero, because it was never about the sanctity of human life, but the justification of the patently unjust.

There are ultimately two types of people who are offended by the Black Lives Matter sentiment.  1. Racists.  If I say ‘all child molesters deserve to be beaten and left on an island covered in broken glass and hot sauce,’ do you know who that offends? Child molesters.  Only people who are overtly or indirectly involved in atrocities defend atrocities. There is a reason why misogynists are so staunchly opposed to women’s rights, because they are terrified of someone treating them like they’ve treated others.

2. People who are inserting an imaginary ‘Only’ in front of Black Lives Matter, or an imaginary ‘More’ at the end of it.  In this Law Professor’s excellent defense of Black Lives Matters they wrote “there are some implicit words that precede “Black Lives Matter,” and they go something like this:

Because of the brutalizing and killing of black people at the hands of the police and the indifference of society in general and the criminal justice system in particular, it is important that we say that BLACK LIVES MATTER.”

Let it be stated outright: All white people are not racist; not even most.  But if you find yourself put off by the Black Lives Matter sentiment, ask yourself which of those two camps you fall into, because there is no third option.  And if you still feel compelled to argue that neither of these things applies to you, read this.

The murder of police in Dallas
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This was horrible, wrong, completely unjust, and had nothing to do with Black Lives Matter. Any and everyone involved in this attack deserves to be caught and punished to the fullest extent of the law.  Violence never has and never will solve anything; an eye for an eye truly does make the whole world blind.

To be clear and state outright: All, or even most police are not bad. They have a very difficult, often thankless job where split second decisions can mean life or death.  But that doesn’t  give them a free pass to shoot first and ask questions later, nor does it excuse them from the consequences of their actions.  Those officers almost certainly didn’t set out to murder Alton Sterling or Philando Castille, but that doesn’t make them any less dead.

But, anyone who feels compelled to blame all or most of the black community for this attack, is also on the hook to blame all or most of the white community for the actions of Dylan Roof, Robert Deer, James Holmes, and Brock Turner.  And if those realities seem contradictory, it’s time to take a long hard look in the mirror.

As a black male, and a proud American, this feels awful.
It can be easy for white Americans to feel somehow offended by the (often imagined) implication that they are racist.  For the rest of us, we have to worry about getting killed because of it.

I am from Little Rock, Arkansas.  I learned early to relate to the police as someone would relate to a tamed tiger in the circus.  It probably won’t eat you, but still move slowly and don’t bother trying to pet it.  I have raised my children to believe the police are their friends, and the first person they should go to if they are feeling scared or lost.

I also live in a nice suburb of Los Angeles,  but for the first time in my adult life, I was scared to go outside.  I was scared of ending up like Philando Castille, who did everything right, and ended up dead.  If we run, we die. If we stand still, we die. If we put our hands up, we die. If we put our hands down, we die.  The next time I am stopped by the police, I literally have no idea what to do.  And statistically speaking, I will be stopped—and sooner than later.

If that feeling has not been a part of your common life’s experience, understand that that is a privilege.  Even Newt Gingrich recently commented on how little the average white person understands about the average black person’s life experience.  Just like the average man doesn’t understand a woman’s average life experience, or a rich person understand a poor person’s.  The undeniable fact is that by an accident of birth, some of us have more problems than others.

And, anyone who says “but I have problems, too!” that is absolutely true.  White America has its own struggles, difficulties and injustices.  The thing is, it very rarely includes the ever present reality of getting murdered for nothing and then having the media and the internet bend over backwards to justify why you had it coming.

I love this country, and I wouldn’t want to live anywhere else, or at any other time in history.  But we have got a real problem with our obsession with guns, and our willingness to easily accept discrimination as long as we didn’t personally do it.  I’m upset about Alton Sterling and Philando Castille because they were ME.

Black Lives Matter protesters are upset because every new dead person is US; our fathers, brothers, mothers, children, aunts and uncles.  This is not an ‘anti police’ position, because it’s possible to be against the murder of citizens and the murder of police, and there’s such a thing as black police.

Deep down inside, we all know if Alton had been a blonde guy named Todd, or Philando Castille was an Irish guy driving a Benz, they’d both still be alive.  And if you know that, you see the problem. But guess what? We already know how to fix it, all we have to do is do it.

I love you, America.

And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!

B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host

Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters

Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters

Become a supporter of my work: http://www.patreon.com/bdavewalters

Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog

Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)

Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!

 

 

 

 

One day at a time.

One day at a time.

Here is a letter a I wrote to someone close to me, on the day of her wedding.

So, I’ve been married for 13 years now, which is no small feat.  13, or even 10 years from now, your life will be completely different.  You won’t live the same place, you won’t work the same place, you won’t drive the same car, or

watch the same shows. Look back to where your life was 10 years ago, and you’ll see this is true.

You’ll also probably have a few children by then, too!

And yet, in the midst of this, you’ll have to find a way to stay together with your husband and stay in sync when the whole world turns around you both.

Contrary to what we’ve been told, marriage isn’t some lifelong binding contract that you’re just FORCED to endure.  It’s also not some iron clad obligation to God, either; plenty of holy people have grown apart, and gone their separate ways.

So what is marriage, then, and how do you make it work?  Marriage is an agreement between the two of you to choose each other.  7 Billion people walk this Earth, and you choose each other.  And you stay together by *continuing* to choose each other.  You will have good times and bad, ups and downs, and changes the likes of which you can’t even begin to imagine (see the above comment about children for starters!).  And the only, only, ONLY, way to make it through that sane and happy is to make doing so a conscious choice.  To work to make your relationship a conscious effort to keep growing in relation to each other, and always stay in each other’s orbits.

And really, that’s all there is to it.  A conscious willingness to choose each other, to communicate, and to trust, respect, and love each other.  Notice, I put love last on that list, since although it’s vital, there are PLENTY of people who love each other, and are TERRIBLE for each other.  And you can respect someone you don’t trust, but you can’t trust someone that you don’t respect.  Always keep that in mind, and you’ll be all set.

And last, but certainly not least:

“Let there be spaces in your togetherness, And let the winds of the heavens dance between you. Love one another but make not a bond of love: Let it rather be a moving sea between the shores of your souls. Fill each other’s cup but drink not from one cup. Give one another of your bread but eat not from the same loaf. Sing and dance together and be joyous, but let each one of you be alone, Even as the strings of a lute are alone though they quiver with the same music. Give your hearts, but not into each other’s keeping. For only the hand of Life can contain your hearts. And stand together, yet not too near together: For the pillars of the temple stand apart, And the oak tree and the cypress grow not in each other’s shadow.”
― Kahlil Gibran, The Prophet

I love you; congratulations, and enjoy this day, and all the days to come.

You are great, and I love you!
And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!

B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host

Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters

Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters

Become a supporter of my work: http://www.patreon.com/bdavewalters

Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog

Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)

Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!

 

Every day is special if you make it special.

Every day is special if you make it special.

“Amateurs sit and wait for inspiration, the rest of us just get up and go to work.”
-Stephen King, On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft

Motivation can often seem like a mystical force that some people just seem to possess in abundance. Or, something that can be gained by sitting through a weekend seminar, or a tenth viewing of The Secret. Or worst of all, something you feel the need to wait for, before taking action.

The truth is that it is none of these things.

Motivation is a wonderful state where things come easily, like sailing over smooth waters with the wind at your back. However, you still have to keep sailing even when the sea is choppy and the winds are blowing you all over the place! For the record, it may not sound as exciting but motivation is nowhere near as important as discipline.  Discipline is what makes you get up and do what you need to do, whether or not you ‘feel’ like it at the time.

A little while back, on an episode of Rise UP with B. Dave Walters, we talked about:
How to do the things you know you should, and stop doing the ones you know you shouldn’t!  How to change in an instant, and much, much, more!

After I got off the radio, I realized I had more to say so I made a video about why your New Year’s resolutions haven’t worked in the past, and how to make them work every year from now on! Although it’s not New Year’s currently, the truth is every day of every year is the beginning of a ‘new’ year.

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So today, I’d like to give you a few pointers on how to get motivated to do the things you really want to do.  Notice what I said there: The things you WANT to do, not the things you should do.  Since as I pointed out in the video, anything you ‘should’ do is never going to happen.  Everything in your brain is wired to rebel against being forced to do anything.

So, the key is to set your mind on things that pull your forward, rather than push you from behind.  Ideally a good goal has a bit of pushing and pulling, the stick and the carrot as it were.  For instance, if you have a goal to lose 20 lbs, my first question would be why do you want to lose 20 lbs?  The number on the scale is meaningless, it only has what power you give to it.

ANYTHING outside of yourself only has what power that you give it.

So maybe you want to lose the weight to fit into a certain outfit for a certain party, or to be ready for beach season.  But why does that matter?  To turn heads? Why does that matter?  Keep drilling down until you get to the core of what your motivation is.

I’ll tell you another secret, though: If your ultimate goal is some sort of external approval, you’ll never be satisfied.  This is one of the main reasons goals fail: Ultimately it wasn’t for YOU, but to get someone else’s approval. You don’t need anyone else to accept you, you only need to accept yourself.

So knowing that, maybe you instead frame it as “I want to lose 20 lbs in the next four months so that I can feel healthy and strong, and I can prove to myself what I’m made of.  I don’t want to feel like a prisoner in my own body and like I’m forced to hide from the world anymore.  I want to be able to step out on the beach and feel proud of all my hard work and everything I’ve accomplished!”

See the difference?  There’s a goal, a deadline, a compelling ‘why’, AND a focus on how it will feel when it’s done.  Any goal you set should have this level of richness and detail.  And I’d submit that as you look back on the things you’ve accomplished in your life, you probably had this level of clarity as you worked at it.

Now, let’s say the things you want feel like they are so far away that you can’t even get started.  We talked recently about how to get up when you hit rock bottom, but more than that I’d say start with smaller goals.  If you are on the edge of being homeless, setting a goal to make a million dollars is the wrong goal; start out with focusing on stabilizing your current situation.

Small, *consistent* progress is what makes the difference.  Remember to do SOMETHING every single day towards accomplishing your goal, and victory is guaranteed; and even better, you’ll enjoy the process.

One last thing: If there is some old habit or painful memory holding you back, this video will help you change it once and for all.

You are great, and I love you!
And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!

B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host

Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters

Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters

Become a supporter of my work: http://www.patreon.com/bdavewalters

Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog

Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)

Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!

 

If you look at your life, you might start to notice a pattern emerge: Certain kinds of relationships, certain kinds of job

it really is that simple

it really is that simple

situations, certain kinds of body difficulties, and all sorts of other things.  Sometimes these patterns can work to our advantage, but more often than not, it’s the same sorts of problems that occur again and again.

It’s all too easy to give into bitterness and blame other people for our troubles, but once it becomes clear that not everyone has these problems, there must be a way out. More often than not our problems are rooted in the past; in our own unresolved baggage, issues, and trauma.   But if there is a problem, there is also a solution (just like Buddha told us with the Four Noble Truths)!

In a recent episode of Rise UP with B. Dave Walters we talked about  how to stop making yourself miserable, what to do when the thing doesn’t make you happy, how to get unstuck; how to deal with painful emotions, release painful memories, and much, much, more! Click here to listen.

Give this a listen and find out how to release the things that are weighing you down, so you can move on and fly free.

What do you think? Feel free to comment down below!

You are great, and I love you!
And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!

B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host

Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters

Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters

Become a supporter of my work: http://www.patreon.com/bdavewalters

Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog

Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)

Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!

  

Tomas Prower, author of La Santa Muerte: Unearthing the Magic & Mysticism of Death

Tomas Prower, author of La Santa Muerte: Unearthing the Magic & Mysticism of Death

Tomas Prower is the author of La Santa Muerte: Unearthing the Magic & Mysticism of Death, a book about how to

tap into the power of the Ultimate Mystery to bring peace and healing into your life.

In this exclusive interview series, we discuss the ‘true’ meaning of Death, and how it gives meaning to life; how to go about creating the life that you really desire, why so many feel powerless and unhappy, and much, much, more.

These are the first 3 parts of our interview series, but you can find the complete audio recordings here.

 

Part 1:
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Part 2:
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Part 3:
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What do you think? Feel free to comment down below!

You are great, and I love you!
And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!

B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host

Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters

Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters

Become a supporter of my work: http://www.patreon.com/bdavewalters

Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog

Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)

Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!

  

TemperheartRadhika Vekaria is one half of the singer/songwriter duo TemperHeart. Ms. Vekaria left behind a successful career in England in order to move to Los Angeles and pursue her lifelong dream of being a professional singer.  In this exclusive interview series, we discuss how to go about creating the life that you really desire, the number one reason why most people are unhappy, why most people are unhappy, and much, much, more.

These are the first 3 parts of our interview series, but you can find the complete audio recordings here.

Part 1:
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Part 2:
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Part 3:
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What do you think? Feel free to comment down below!

You are great, and I love you!
And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!

B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host

Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters

Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters

Become a supporter of my work: http://www.patreon.com/bdavewalters

Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog

Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)

Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!

  

Question submitted via About.me/BDaveWalters:
“Okay, your post said if I am struggling with online dating to message you. Here I am struggling with online dating!

It's time to change the game!

It’s time to change the game!

My problem is that I’m not attracting people I am interested in. Maybe it’s the site, or my profile, I’m not sure. Help!”

Online dating is a wonderful thing, since it removes time and space from the dating equation.  In the past, the only way to meet someone was to be in the same place, at the same time, have an attraction, and a chance to interact.  Now, thanks to the power of the internet, you can sit back and ‘custom order’ that special someone.

However, first and foremost you have to understand how men think, and once you understand that, look at who you are being in the relationship.  The reason why this is, is even if you found the right man today, but you don’t understand him or how to relate to him properly, you’ll lose him anyway.  So it’s better to look at this as a time to prepare yourself to create the exact kind of relationship you want to have.

Once you are clear on those things, ask yourself, exactly what kind of man are you looking for?  Is he tall or short?  Very fit and active, or a stay at home type guy?  What does he do for a living, or at least what kind of money does he make? If you want to meet a grad student who works at Starbucks, you’ll have to do very different things than what it takes to meet a 45 year old surgeon.

Once you know the kind of man you are looking for, then you can start to ask yourself if the sites you are on, are the kinds of sites he’ll be on.  Wealthy men aren’t on PlentyOfFish, and guys looking to settle down aren’t on hookup sites, like Tindr, either.  Once you figure out the sites you want to setup profiles on, then you need to look at how you’re presenting yourself.  Again, if you want to date a music producer, dressing like a school teacher in your photos is probably not going to catch his attention.  By the same token, if you look like a video vixen in all your photos, don’t expect to attract high-end men who value you for your personality.

If you aren’t sure what to say about yourself in your profile, ,ask your closest friends what they love most about you, and emphasize those things; be sure to ask men what they think, since it’s a man who’s attention you are trying to catch.

One last, but definitely not least thing: Do not lie about anything in your profile! Don’t say you love ‘camping, and quiet evenings at home’ if you don’t.  Don’t say you are into jogging and going to football games if you aren’t.  Your job is to figure out your best mate, and present your best self in a place where he’s likely to see it, and everything else will take care of itself.

What do you think? Feel free to comment down below!

You are great, and I love you!
And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!

B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host

Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters

Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters

Become a supporter of my work: http://www.patreon.com/bdavewalters

Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog

Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)

Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!

  

12359991_1169559669739607_2901022396509338385_nOn a recent episode of my radio show, Rise UP with B. Dave Walters we discussed the true meaning of Christmas, and how to deal with some of the negative emotions that can come along with it.  I got so emotional while talking about the meaning of Christmas that I cried on the radio; something I didn’t think was possible!

We have also talked about some of the more…controversial aspects of religion, such as whether or not it’s a sin to be gay or whether or not pornography or masturbation are sins, too.

So of course, now it’s time to take on Christmas.

First, let me be clear about one very important thing: Christmas is the most important day of the year, and I believe that the birth of Jesus Christ is the most important event in human history.

Just not for the reasons that you have been told.

So before we can answer if Jesus himself would celebrate this holiday, we have to look at why he *wouldn’t*.

My own personal path has evolved from rejecting any of the pagan elements of the Holiday (and there are several), to being disgusted by the commercialism of Christmas, to where it is now.  So let us look at each of these in turn, and how I see it now.

First, the Pagan elements of Christmas:

It is important to understand that Christmas trees, Yule logs, singing carols, giving gifts and having holiday feasts were done for a very long time before Jesus was born.  People have been celebrating the ‘birth of God’ on December 25th for thousands of years.  Add to that the fact that there is substantial evidence that Jesus wasn’t born on December 25th, but sometime in September.

Here is an excellent (and a little scary) video that gives a short overview about how many elements of Christianity come from earlier religious traditions.  It is important to note: understanding history doesn’t mean you aren’t a Christian, it just means you are informed.

The fact is yes, MANY elements of this celebration were borrowed from other places; but after 2,000 years they are our traditions now.  Anyone who truly wishes to celebrate the way the first Christmas was only needs to go out and do it in a barn!

Second, the commercialization of Christmas:

It is hard to deny that Christmas is big business.

Considering most of our economy is built upon convincing you that you aren’t good enough, it follows naturally that Christmas marketing centers around trying to spend money to fight that fear.

Somewhere along the way, we lost track of giving gifts to show our loved ones that we care, to trying to buy their love and approval.   Ask yourself, when you went Christmas shopping this year, how often did you think about how much they would love and appreciate the gift, and how good it would make you feel to give it?  Or how much did you think about giving gifts because you HAD to?  Because if you didn’t, or didn’t spend enough, what would they say?

Chances are you did a bit of both, and any parent knows there is no feeling on Earth like seeing your children’s faces light up when they open up that special gift.  I would simply invite you to keep the love and appreciation you are trying to express at the front of your mind instead of the commercialism.  Rather than just give the gifts, or even writing it in a card, try telling someone how much they mean to you and how much you care.

That is a real gift.

So, what is the true meaning of Christmas?

I opened this article by saying Christmas is the most important day of the year, and I believe that the birth of Jesus Christ is the most important event in human history; now let me tell you why.

Because no matter how much has been added or subtracted to it over the years, Christmas symbolizes the fact that God opened a way for people to be able to connect with Him completely and directly.  It also celebrates the birth and life of a man who was so completely filled with the Spirit that he provided us with an example we could use to pattern our lives around in order to server God and our fellow human beings.

So would Jesus celebrate Christmas?

Well, the obvious answer is no, he’d be celebrating Hanukkah because he was Jewish!  But, for his 33 years on Earth I am sure he celebrated his own birth; but if he were here in the flesh today he would probably do things much differently.

It is clear in the Gospels that Jesus enjoyed celebrating and having a good time, but it is also clear that he kept serving God at the center of his heart.  So whether he observed Hanukkah as an observant Jew, or Christmas as a Christian is actually secondary to the fact that he would remind us of all the tremendous blessing God has given us, and how important it is to keep that love and gratitude at the forefront of our hearts and at the center of our lives.

I want to leave you with something special: the greatest story ever told.  It’s about a young girl chosen by God, her new husband, and a tiny baby they brought into the world in the humblest of surroundings; in a barn surrounded by animals.  That little baby would grow up to teach us to love one another fearlessly; and to forgive anyone who has slighted us.

To always work to be a blessing to our fellow human beings, because God has so richly blessed us.

So now, I wish you peace, love, and happiness; peace on Earth and good will towards men.   I truly love you, and thank God for you every single day.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to you and your loved ones.

The Birth of Jesus (Luke 2:1-21):

1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.

4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.

8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.

13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,

14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,  and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”

16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

21 On the eighth day, when it was time to circumcise the child, he was named Jesus, the name the angel had given him before he was conceived.”

 

What do you think? Feel free to comment down below!

You are great, and I love you!
And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!

B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host

Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters

Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters

Become a supporter of my work: http://www.patreon.com/bdavewalters

Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog

Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)

Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!

  

Everyday should be Thanksgiving

Tomorrow is Thanksgiving here in the U.S., but I want to take some time out from cooking turkey to have a quick talk about what you’re grateful for.

On a recent episode of Rise UP with B. Dave Walters: Simple Answers to Life’s Hard Questions we talked about “Hope During Dark Times”:

Why World War 3 isn’t breaking out, how to stop being afraid, where anxiety comes from and how peace can be found; the one and only place to find happiness, how and why bad things happen in the world if human beings are innately good (and we are), and much, much, more!

Click here to listen.

So for now, let me say that even though Thanksgiving is set aside as a day to give thanks you should take some time every day to review all the things you’re thankful for.

Just in case you don’t realize how good you’ve got it, here, in no particular order, are 10 great things you may not have considered:

1.You woke up this morning
This one seems simple but the fact is thousands, if not millions of people woke up this morning and didn’t know it was their last. Just being alive is a tremendous blessing, and means you still have at least a little more time to enjoy your life and everything in it.

2.You can see and hear
If you are reading this, that means you can probably see! If I get around to recording a podcast of this, we can find out if you can hear, too! For my blind or deaf Brothers and Sisters out there, you can still be grateful for the fact that you live in a time where technology exists that still lets you live an independent and self-sufficient existence.

3.No one shot at you today
It’s very easy to take for granted that you don’t live in some sort of a war zone. Right now millions of people live in a constant state of fear that some sort of violence will break out, and if you aren’t one of them you should be thankful. Realize that some of those people live right here in this country!
The fact that we have police and military who are willing and able to protect us and come to our aid in and emergency is a luxury that not everyone has.

4.You didn’t go to bed hungry
Self explanatory, but I can guarantee unless you live in an ultra wealthy area, someone within 1 mile, if not 1 block of you, did go to bed without enough to eat.

5.You have a roof over your head
Whether or not you live in your dream home, it is probably a lot nicer than a park bench or an underpass!

YouTube Preview Image

6.You’re healthy
We all have our bumps, bruises, and issues; but by healthy, I mean you haven’t been diagnosed with a terminal illness. If you have been diagnosed with something, refer to the earlier points: you’re still alive and have access to healing the likes of which the world has never seen!

7.You got educated for free
Kindergarten through 12th Grade education was probably yours on Uncle Sam’s nickel. Remember, large portions of the world will never even get to learn to read, much less read Shakespeare or Voltaire.

8.You can decide who and what you want to be
Economic down turn aside, if you live in the “Western” world, you have a level of freedom and self-determination that people would be willing to die to have (and many do just that trying to get what you were born into!)

9.You know someone loves you
If you can’t think of at least one person who loves you (including dogs and cats), then at least know that God loves you and so do I!

10.You live in the single greatest time in history to be alive
There has never been a better time to be alive then this.
Technology has made it possible to travel further in a few hours than we could have in months by horse, train, or ship. Hollywood studios spend hundreds of millions of dollars just to entertain you for a couple of hours! All the knowledge of the world is available at your finger tips through the wonder of the World Wide Web.

And, in case you don’t believe me that you’re lucky to be here right now, I have a simple test:
Is there anyone on this Earth that you’d be willing to switch places with, 100%? And I don’t just mean their fame or fortune, everything. You give up all your friends, all your family, everyone you know and everything you’ve got to take on their life. Their face, their body, their ups and downs.

For all the people I’ve ever asked this question, the answer is always no. If you think the answer is yes, message me  and we’ll talk about it.

Otherwise, there you have it; plenty of things to hit your knees and give thanks for.  I’ve attached a short video to help you keep things in perspective, too.

Enjoy your Holiday, and have some extra cranberries for me!

 

What do you think? Feel free to comment down below!

You are great, and I love you!
And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!

B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host

Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters

Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters

Become a supporter of my work: http://www.patreon.com/bdavewalters

Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog

Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)

Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!

  

October 27 will mark the last of three consecutive ‘Super Moon’ full moons of 2015. This month has already been a very high-energy time, which may have resulted in thin skins, and more than a few sleepless nights. 

Beautiful, isn't it?

Beautiful, isn’t it?

This full moon will be in the sign of Taurus, which brings our focus to things like finance, and concrete, tangible things.  The Sun, however, will be in the sign of Scorpio, which deals with emotions, sensations, and pleasure among other things.  This could result in conflicts between what we want, and what we know we can afford; do you really need those shoes?  Is that big date night outing really in the budget?

Full moons are always a time for introspection, but this one will be especially powerful.  Because Venus, Mars, and Jupiter are all in Virgo, emotions will easily bubble to the surface.  ‘I love you’ will be easy to say, but be careful, because getting angry and lashing out will be just as easy.

And finally, as always Taurus is the sign of stubbornness; be wary of people digging in their heels and refusing to budge, especially if they aren’t getting what they want.  And be just as careful to make sure you aren’t the one who’s being unreasonable!

What do you think? Feel free to comment down below!

You are great, and I love you!
And if you love me back, click ‘share’ up at the top!

B. Dave Walters Writer, Life Coach, and Talk Radio Host

Find out more about me: http://about.me/BDaveWalters

Ask me anything: http://formspring.me/BDaveWalters

Become a supporter of my work: http://www.patreon.com/bdavewalters

Pages I support:
Jesus and Buddha — Interfaith dialog

Gnostic Theism — Religion and Spirituality for the 21st Century (Join the Movement!)

Love One Another — A group for the coolest Spiritual people on the Internet!

  

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