The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

Eagle Scout

I am increasingly amazed at the quality of young people I have in my life.  Ian Montgomery and his dedication to being a force for good in the world, give me hope for the future.  He happens to be yet another teen cousin who has taken the values and guidance of his parents and turned it into positive action
How do you live your bliss?

At this point, I am still finding myself and setting goals. I am achieving some of them and making new ones. For example, I am an honors student, I am working towards my Eagle Scout rank, I am involved in the care of my elders, and I am continuing with my goal-setting.

As a teen, what are some of your interests and activities?

Some of my interests include camping, video games, and being with my friends.

Please tell me about the Eagle Scout project you are doing.

My Eagle Scout project entailed me working in an inactive cemetery. What this means is that no more money is going in to the upkeep of this cemetery due to no more plots of land being sold. What I did was that a group of volunteers and I removed the creeping ivy from the gravestones to prevent further damage to them, and photographed the stones. The pictures and ledgers were transcribed and the information was uploaded to a genealogy website – http://www.facebook.com/l/6c1bb2mBHjDBhbwi3WXKycn9ekg/findagrave.com

The fully transcribed ledgers will be going to the Jewish Genealogical Society of Greater Philadelphia, who will put them on the world-wide burial registry.

What motivated such an act of love?

My mother is very involved in genealogy and she has found long-lost family members in nearby areas. She found her great-grandmother at this cemetery and invited me to come along. I was interested in it and when I saw the state of the cemetery, I was astonished. There was extremely thick ivy around the stones, some gouging out pieces of the granite and marble of them. There were multiple trees, which were overgrown weeds, around some of the stones, uprooting many adjacent ones. This made me feel that someone should do something about it, and I felt that I would be able to accomplish making this cemetery better.

In our conversation, you mentioned that this is something you are doing for which the recipients will never be able to directly thank you. What inner satisfaction are you experiencing as a result?

Some inner satisfaction that I am experiencing as a result of this project is that I feel I understand my heritage better and it puts a sense of humility in me. I also have the realization that a small group of volunteers can make a world-wide difference.

What values are you being taught at home that fuels your beliefs and actions?

Values I am being taught at home are cheerfulness, humility, honesty, faith, and the greater good.

How can others get involved with this project?

My project specifically is finished, but being on a street corner, there is trash that will continue getting caught on the fences. If anyone has a low-power crane or something similar, some of the knocked over stones could be righted up. The name of the cemetery is Mount Carmel Cemetery, and it is on the corner of Frankford and E. Cheltenham Ave in Philadelphia, PA.

Ian let me know: “On a side note, there are 17 recorded Weinsteins in the cemetery, if you are interested.”

 
 

People You Love

 

Take a moment in the stillness of your mind and the fullness of your heart to recall those you love who are no longer in body. Whatever your spiritual belief tells you about where they are or what they might be doing, you know that they are always going to be part of you since you carry a piece of them with you. However long or fleeting your relationship with them, their influence informs your every day interactions. Give a listen to these powerful words and let them reach deep within you and soothe your soul~ 

People You Love by Eric Bibb and Pura Fe

 

http://youtu.be/rogfICQJZVg

Only Love

“There are four questions of value in life… What is sacred? Of what is the spirit made? What is worth living for, and what is worth dying for? The answer to each is the same. Only love.” –Don Juan de Marco

 

http://youtu.be/SoJUCuNewRs

 

I recall watching this 1994 movie starring Johnny Depp, Marlon Brando and Faye Dunaway with a sense of awe, delight and validation of what I have long known to be so; that ‘reality’ is subjective. In case you missed the film; Johnny Depp’s character, dressed as a latter-day Zorro, attempts suicide and is found by Marlon Brando’s psychiatrist persona. Brando’s doc-self listens with rapt attention and fascination to the stories shared by the love-struck young man claiming to be ‘Don Juan’, the world’s greatest lover. As he attempts to sort out ‘truth’ from alleged psychotic delusion, his life and relationship are transformed.

How would your life be altered if you knew for certain that regardless of the question, love was the answer?

 

Soundtrack music:    http://youtu.be/8UaDd1yl_io

Our Real Full Time Job

 

This experience harkens back a few years, but it is every bit as timely today as it was

then; a journal entry of sorts…

 

“I received an email from my friend Peter Moses a few weeks ago, as part of a

request to  forward a press release for a fundraiser for an organization we are both

part of, called Rubye’s Kids that creates a holiday party and other gatherings

throughout the year for inner city Philly kids. Emotional marshmallow that I am, I

cried when I read it:

 

 

Thanks, as always, for spreading the Love (your real fulltime job:)” and then it

occurred to me that there really is no more important job in the world than that. The

cool thing is, we all applied for it at birth and whether we know it or not, we are on

the payroll, and the job description might look something like this:

 

smiling at strangers

 

cleaning up after yourself (physically and emotionally), or at least not expecting

anyone else to clean up after you

 

offering a supportive ear, an open heart or shoulder to cry on

 

unconditional positive regard

 

seeing and honoring the highest in yourself and each other (the meaning of the

 

Sanskrit word ‘namaste’)

 

listening with the ears of the heart (not second guessing what someone else will say

or formulating your response)

 

being both a generous giver and gracious receiver

 

allowing others to grow from their experiences without rescuing, fixing or saving

 

sharing the best of who you are

 

living with compassion, both toward yourself and others

 

being trustworthy and in integrity

 

finding ways to make someone’s day

 

being fully present with whoever is presented to you

 

offering hugs, knowing that they are heart to heart resuscitation

 

facing each day with wonder and anticipation

 

I’ve been authorized by the Boss (no, not Bruce Springsteen:)…you know

 

the Big Boss to offer you these bonuses that come along with the job:

 

 

Know that there is no where you can go, where love won’t follow

Adore the person in the mirror, who is really embodied love

Let yourself be fully seen

Unbridle your creativity, let it run free

Treasure your dreams

Cradle yourself

Be your bliss

Swim in your deepest passions

Cry (my friend Dianea is a therapist who believes so strongly in the healing power of

tears that her license plate reads :CRYBABE)

Play big in the world

Scatter love like wildflower seeds

Welcome your heart’s desires

Bring the light INTO the tunnel with you instead of waiting for it at the other end

Live with a heart-on

 

There is a Rubye’s Kids fundraising event coming up on March 19th, so if

 

you would like to know more about this extraordinary organization, please go

 

to www.rubyeskids.org

 

 

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