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The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

Passionate Life

What are you passionate about?  What lights you up from the inside and turns you into a human sparkler? Is there something that you simply can’t wait to do when you get up (after taking care of necessary bodily functions, of course)?  For me, it is writing. I found my calling pretty early in life as I toted around books as often as I did dolls and toys. My parents and grandmother would read to me daily and I practically lived at the library down the street, sitting at tiny tables as the ‘library lady’ (although I first heard the title as ‘li-berry’ when 3 or 4) presented story hour. Dr. Seuss, Little Golden Books, Highlights Magazine, Grimms Fairy Tales were all staples in our home. My father would refer to the bathroom as ‘the library’ at times; a relatively quiet place where he could read for a bit. My parents were avid readers as well; my mother’s interests leaning more toward mystery and romance and my father immersed himself in health, fitness, WWII novels and spirituality. They both read until a few weeks prior to their deaths over the past 4 years.  My father was buried with his bible and a book of Jewish prayers and concepts.  I read to him from that one while he was making his transition. Mine has been eclectic: sci fi, adventure, poetry, romance, spirituality, sexuality, bio’s and personal growth/self help. Much of my own writing combines those genres.

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I can’t imagine a life without the wonder of words. They feed my soul, heal my heart and give voice to thoughts that fill my head, threatening to spill out of my ears if I wasn’t willing to put them on paper or screen. I never get writer’s block…sometimes just the opposite occurs and it parallels that commercial “I’ve fallen and I can’t get up.”….”I’m talking (writing) and I can’t shut up.” Can anyone here relate to that? My mind is almost constantly whirring/whirling/swirling with ideas that often awaken me in the wee hours, daring me to jot them down, lest they disappear back into the mish -mosh pit, getting swept into the rowdy crowd. I am blessed that I have outlets (this one included:) that allow me the opportunity to be heard and the joy of knowing that some of them spur people on to discovering their own purpose and passion.

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A grateful nod to the wordsmiths who have inspired me over the years, including Richard Bach, Dan Millman, Mary Oliver, Thea Alexander, Rumi, Hafiz, Robert Heinlein, Elizabeth Lesser, SARK, Elizabeth Gilbert, Barry and Joyce Vissell, Ram Dass…and way too many more to mention. Just listing their names could be a blog entry. I am delighted to be among them as I know I will always be passionately, decidedly, affirmatively, deliriously interested  in crafting word pictures.

http://youtu.be/x_f56CZ99JY What A Feeling-Flash Dance by Irene Cara

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Outrageous Requests

“Great things are only possible with outrageous requests.”-Thea Alexander

This morning I woke up considering what it is I would be sharing in the Bliss Blog today and a thought crossed my mind, that had been lingering for the past few days. What is it that I settle for, rather than asking for what I really want?  Do I usually only request what I am fairly certain I can receive, rather than risking hearing ‘no’?  Yup, there are many times that I play it safe and go for what seems attainable. What if I could truly dive into the Universal Pool and splash about in the uncertainty and simply be brave in asking for what I desire? And as things go, the Source responded with the message I most needed to hear. Although I had never read this quote, attributed to one of my favorite writers, it was the perfect answer to my query. Thea Alexander is the author of a pivotal book in my metaphysical journey. 2150 A.D. is the allegorical Hero’s Journey of Jon Lake; Ph.D student in the 1960’s whose service in Viet Nam cost him his leg. He shares an apartment with his best friend Karl Johnson who acts as a guardian angel of sorts and the skeptical mind that challenges Jon’s new perceptions that are awakened while, paradoxically, Jon is asleep. In his dream state, Jon travels to the year 2150 in which the people he initially encounters seem unattainably super human, endowed with exquisite beauty that reflect their inner divinity, possessing abilities that go far beyond his beliefs of what he is capable of achieving. He is brought there in order to become a greater force for good and to heal his own wounded places. What he discovers is that within him and within all of us, lie the seeds of magnificence. The community is referred to as The Macro Society that evolves following the Earth Changes that we have been hearing about for so many years. It is a natural outgrowth of the acknowledgment of what we were meant to be.  Jon has discovered that he can remain in that time period so long as he develops some of those same abilities as his ‘classmates’, with the added bonus that he will be re-united with his soul mate. I don’t want to give away too much of the story, but suffice it to say that it has many twists and turns and is a reflection of how I endeavor to live. The characters share this belief as expressed below and it seems to me to be a good guide for living, regardless of the era.

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The Macro Creed

I Believe in the Macrocosmic oneness of all, and in myself as a perfectly functioning aspect of that Macrocosm. I Believe that I and only I have the honor and the power to determine, to design and to alter whatever my daily life contains, for it is the result of my own thoughts. I Believe that there are as many paths as there are people to walk them, and that each person is the best judge of which path they will walk at any given time. I seek the adventure of interaction with others knowing it is the classroom of my evolution. I joyously receive this and everyday knowing it is the canvas upon which I am painting my life.

Back to the outrageous request concept;  keep in mind that outrageous doesn’t mean ridiculous or impossible, just heart and mind stretch-y….what would you ask for if you knew that it would stretch your comfort zones, whether or not you received it?

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My outrageous request list includes:

Meeting and growing a relationship with a Life Partner this  calendar year

Travelling to Hawaii  and Ireland on vacation

Workshops and classes that I teach, filled to capacity every time

Speaking at conferences

Writing for whatever publications I choose

Interviewing Oprah and Ellen

Publishing another book

Chapters included in Chicken Soup For The Soul books

Having my current Bliss Mistress book picked up by a major publisher

Reaching people worldwide with the message that they deserve to live their bliss FULL OUT!

www.donalexander.com/MacroSociety/Pages/TheaA.html

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://youtu.be/q098txAt-MA 2150 A..D

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You-niverse

“Do not feel lonely. The entire Universe is Inside You.” ~Rumi
When we are born, we enter into a multi-sensory realm that is quite different from the cozy, contained watery world in which our tiny bodies and beings floated for 9 months or so. As we emerge from our chrysallis, in many ways like a butterfly, spreading our wings, we gaze around in wonder, taking in all that is around us. Yesterday, while doing grocery shopping, I encountered a mother and her 6 month old son. She had been playing peek-a-boo with him as he was lounging in the baby carrier attached to the shopping cart. I love that game, because it is universal and regardless of the culture, the little one is delighted and since I am easily amused, I get vicarious joy from it as well. I introduced myself to the mom and spoke with the baby, telling him that I was aware that he ‘knew stuff’ and that by the time he was old enough to speak, he likely will have forgotten most of it and would be spending the rest of his life in an attempt to remember it. That is my intention for my own life and what I endeavor to teach others.
If we are fortunate, the adults around us encourage our curiosity. We take in our environment by tasting, touching, hearing, seeing and smelling it all. Sometimes we are admonished not to do so and we shut down our inner explorer. While there certainly is a need for rules and boundaries for the purpose of safety and respect, it is important that we continue stretching our comfort zones so as not to be so restrained as to miss out on the bliss. Clearly this little one wasn’t about to do so as he gave me a big ‘ol gummy grin. I commented to him that there might come a time when he would have a flash of memory about this strange woman talking to him from once upon a time and his soul would make a connection with mine.
That sense of union or re-union with kindred spirits across time and space is one that I value highly, since I meet them all over the everywhere. I rarely feel a sense of loneliness, since I know that everyone I encounter is a potential friend with whom I  can co-create wonder.
What if  we all truly grokked that?  Then there would all of these marvelous little You-niverses intersecting with each other.
Art by Michael Divine
http://youtu.be/4xjPODksI08  One Love by Playing For Change

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Outrageous Eldering

 

“Speak your mind, even if your voice shakes, for well aimed sling shots can topple giants.”-Maggie Kuhn, 1905-1995

I was just thinking about Maggie Kuhn who I had the pleasure of interviewing in the 1990’s. She was the outspoken founder of The Gray Panthers  which evolved out of  her experience of forced retirement from a career in peace and social justice . I love this quote:  “The older you get the more outrageous you can be because you have nothing to lose.”  She told me she wanted this inscription on her tombstone:  “Here lies Maggie Kuhn under the only stone she left unturned.” She passed in 1995 and I imagine she is still raising consciousness and maybe a necessary ruckus somewhere. What most touched me about Maggie was how unapologetic she was (and why should she be?) for living in defiance of  the stereotypes assigned to older folks. She surrounded herself with people from multiple generations; living in what I call a ‘family of choice’ home in Philly; with people in their 20’s and 30’s. She never married and had lovers many years her junior. By taking a stand for elders, she took a stand for all, since there will come a time when we (if we are lucky), reach our 70’s or 80’s. There are times when I think “I want to be like her when I grow up.” She seemed not to shrink, but rather, to expand when faced with challenges, facing up to naysayers. She was quite a force of nature and spoke openly about sex, which created discomfort in some who listened. According to this WWWOW (what I refer to as Wise, Wild, Wonderful Older Woman), “Sex and learning end only when rigor mortis sets in.”
Maggie feels like a kindred spirit in many ways to the elders that have been in my life, from maternal and paternal grandmothers, aunts and a cousin who were young widows and who recreated their lives as a result (kinda like me, when I was widowed at 40 and started anew). I have been blessed as well, with having my parents in my life into their 80’s and they were marvels at fresh starts following ‘retirement’ at 65 that led to nearly 2o more years of paid and volunteer work in their community. My Dad worked in their Town Center gym, bowling alley and skating rink and my Mom taughter water aerobics and senior stretch class called Stretching With Selma. Their resilience in the face of change and challenges has always inspired me.
These days, I have friends in their 70’s and 80’s, including Hannelore and Bob Goodwin who run Circle of Miracles (an interfaith spiritual community of which I am a part);  beloved mentor Yvonne Kaye, veteran radio talk show host, author, speaker, interfaith minister; Denny Daikeler; interior designer and writer who with another friend, minister and educator, Gary Culp create exquisite dance perfomances. He and his wife Jennifer moved from Pennsylvania to Mexico and run a  multi-cultural school for children of ex-pats. Jim Donovan (likely the youngest of the bunch), wrote a book called Don’t Let An Old Person Move Into Your Body, that speaks about the outdated ideas around aging and the ways in which we can maintain not only longevity, but quality of life.
These friends inspire this about to turn 54 year old, to live each day as outrageously as possible as I recognize my role as family matriarch and fellow WWWOW!
http://youtu.be/jQ15y_OZ9ns End Of The Line-by the Traveling Wilburys
www.graypanthers.org
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