Monday, December 26, 2011

The Messiah – The Prince of Peace is Born

As we celebrated Christmas over the weekend, I have been thinking deeply about the meaning of this bible verse:

~ Luke 10:27

To me, the words of Jesus represent the true meaning of Christmas.  Jesus came to introduce us to his Father, the God of Heaven and Earth, and to teach us the true way of life.  Making that vertical relationship with the Father and the horizontal relationship with people here on earth is the most important accomplishment for us humans. 

Over the holidays I listened to the glorious music of “Messiah” by Georg Friedrich Händel.   Even though Mr. Händel was a prolific composer, this composition became his most famous.  Georg Friedrich Händel (1685-1759), was a German born Baroque composer who lived in England during the latter part of his life.   In 1742 he cooperated with Charles Jennens (1700-1773) who had assembled text for the Messiah in 1741, mainly from the Old Testament.  It is an English text oratorio (large musical composition for concert with choir, orchestra and soloists).  Here is a link to a performance of: “For Unto Us a Child is Given”

1) How do we love the Messiah?
I like to focus on the two aspects of the above saying of Jesus.  Loving God establishes our faith.  It takes our 100% effort to figure out how to manifest the words of Jesus into our everyday life.  God being a spirit came to earth in the body of Christ to teach us the way, the truth and the life.  He came to cut us off from the blood lineage of Satan (the ruler of this world) and connect us to our true blood lineage with God.  By studying and believing in the word we can be reborn through Jesus and the Holy Spirit.  Through this kind of a lifestyle we can become adapted into the family of God and be reborn.

A week before Christmas I had the opportunity to join a True Family Values seminar with hundreds of clergy and believers in Chicago at the historical Hilton Hotel.  These ministers and other guests brought down an amazing spirit and truly showed their faith in their savior.

2) How do we love each other?

Jesus gave us the instructions to love each other as we love ourselves.  That means we are to substancialize his words.  There are several ways to do this.

a)Take a larger view-point
I was just recently reading an article on how we can all benefit from taking a larger perspective.  Like the astronauts who went to the moon, even though they were scientists, they couldn’t help but come back changed people and gaining a higher point-of-view regarding the situation on the planet earth.  From out of space they looked upon the earth as one global unit, not structured into countries, religions, cultures, races, etc.

"That the only thing that really matters in life are your relationships to other people."
~ Dr. George E. Vaillant – conductor of the Grant Study Men

b) Adapt social skills for an harmonious life
Have you ever heard of the Grant Study Men?  Dr. Vaillant has been conducting studies on human behavior over many years.  With the financial support of William Grant, the study charted the lives of 824 men and women for over 60 years. He found seven major factors that predict healthy aging, both physically and psychologically: education, stable marriage, healthy weight, some exercise, not smoking, not abusing alcohol, and "employing mature adaptations." (Vaillant believes social skills and coping methods are crucial in determining overall satisfaction.)

However, his most important finding was revealed in a 2008 interview. He was asked, "What have you learned from the Grant Study men?"  Dr. Vaillant's response: True success "is more about us than me."

For me that has been beautifully demonstrated in my favored Christmas movie: “Its’ A Wonderful Life” which you can watch through this link in its full length:


c) Love yourself by forgiving yourself
We have so many demonstrations of a Christly life.  I find it hardest to love and to forgive myself.  This is our greatest challenge today; to let go of our heavy baggage and believe that we are worthy of the love of God.  A friend of mine, Doris Crompton, wrote a beautiful article this Christmas.  She is conducting emotional release sessions.  Doris has helped many people to let go of unwanted emotions. 

Let’s prepare for the New Year by ending unfinished business.  The Messiah is here to help us clean our slates and make a new beginning.  By loving God and loving men we can receive our Messiah.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Be a good Planter…

 You may wonder why I am talking about planting in the middle of winter.  I am not talking about a physical garden at this time.  During this Christmas season I find it very appropriate to re-evaluate one’s faith.  I recently came across this composition which I believe was originally written for children’s education.  In our secular society today it’s not politically correct to talk about one’s faith.  Unfortunately, we have thrown out the baby with the bathwater and thrown out virtues, too. 

  • If you plant honesty, you will reap trust.
  • If you plant goodness, you will reap friends.
  • If you plant humility, you will reap greatness.
  • If you plant perseverance, you will reap victory.
  • If you plant consideration, you will reap harmony.
  • If you plant hard work, you will reap success.
  • If you plant forgiveness, you will reap reconciliation.
  • If you plant openness, you will reap intimacy.
  • If you plant patience, you will reap improvements.
  • If you plant faith, you will reap miracles.


  • If you plant dishonesty, you will reap distrust.
  • If you plant selfishness, you will reap loneliness.
  • If you plant pride, you will reap destruction.
  • If you plant envy, you will reap trouble.
  • If you plant laziness, you will reap stagnation.
  • If you plant bitterness, you will reap isolation.
  • If you plant greed, you will reap loss.
  • If you plant gossip, you will reap enemies.
  • If you plant worries, you will reap wrinkles.
  • If you plant sin, you will reap guilt.
A few weeks ago I wrote about doing things anyway, at the advice of Dr. Kent M. Keith and Mother Teresa. 

The above words certainly fall into the same category.  Using positive words and statements are very powerful.  With a clear vision of what we want for ourselves and for others, we can create a successful life.  Our subconscious mind is very impressionable and doesn’t differentiate between positive or negative declarations. 
Anytime, we talk about values, it is good to remind ourselves of the consequences of our actions.  As we celebrate this Season of Love and the birth of our Savior Jesus let us go beyond doctrines and differences and look at faith in a new way.  As we discussed two weeks ago this is the time to open our spiritual senses and let us directly be guided by the spirit of God.  Expect the unexpected and be prepared for miracles.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Love Your Cup of Joe…

During this Christmas season you may have a stronger need for a cup of joe.  You may either feel tired from all the partying (?) or stressed out from the preparations of it all.  Or you may just love your cup of coffee every morning like me.

Where did the name come from?

Cup of joe is a purely American expression.  It was supposedly given to honor Josephus Danielswho didn’t want his sailors to drink alcohol on board of the ships; he banned it completely in 1914.  He encouraged the men to drink coffee instead.  Mr. Daniels was later appointed Secretary of the Navy during WWI.

"The morning cup of coffee has an exhilaration about it which the cheering influence of the afternoon or evening cup of tea cannot be expected to reproduce."

~ Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., "Over the Teacups," 1891

Health Benefits

Studies show that we may be benefitting from coffee in more ways than just the energy-boosting caffeine in coffee -- we might also be reaping its cancer-preventing and depression-lowering effects, just to name a couple.

Caffeine stimulates brain functions, especially in the right hemisphere which helps language, both spoken and understanding.  Tad Brunye, a senior cognitive scientist at the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research Development and Engineering Center in Natick, Massassuchets, explains that it doesn’t have to be a lot to get the desired result.

Some people believed that tea had more health benefits than coffee.  Suzie Cohen, R.PH. points out, that coffee-drinkers may be at lower risk for liver and colon cancer, type 2diabetes, and Parkinson's disease.  It’s a proven fact that both tea and coffee contain antioxidants which are necessary to fight free radicals in the body.

Donald Hensrud, M.D. from the famous Mayo Clinic suggests that like everything else, coffee consumption should be moderate.  The same news comes from a study at Harvard University 

"Over second and third cups flow matters of high finance, high state, common gossip and low comedy. [Coffee] is a social binder, a warmer of tongues, a soberer of minds, a stimulant of wit, a foiler of sleep if you want it so. From roadside mugs to the classic demi-tasse, it is the perfect democrat."
~ Author Unknown

History of Coffee

Coffee’shistory had its roots in spiritual practices.  Muslims in Yemen made a form of wine from the coffee bean which was consumed during religious ceremonies.  A possible origin of the name is from a region in modern day Ethiopia, called the kingdom of kaffa where coffee plants were cultivated.  Apparently, the benefits of the plant were discovered by accident.  Some stories say that shepherds chewed on the berries and found them bitter.  They experimented with it by boiling and roasting the beans and eventually enjoyed the energizing brewed drink.

We still can agree today that the properties of coffee drive away fatigue and lethargy and bring to the body a certain lightness and vigor.

The coffee culture in our days is including more than just the black drink.  It is in all the additions where we often find the “dangers” if not extra calories.

Anyway, moderation is the game.  I surely enjoy my cup of coffee every morning and next time I will thank Captain Joe for another name for it.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Entering the Spiritual Age

I believe we all can agree that the world is in a mess.  No matter which way we turn, things and situations aren’t working properly.   We are facing today unprecedented circumstances in the economy, ecology, politics, poverty and social issues, health, discrimination and human trafficking, terrorism, weather and natural disaster, etc.  No matter what I am going to list here, most people get overwhelmed by just thinking of a small section of these global issues.  One thing is for sure we are all affected and not just by local concerns. 

“The problems that exist in the world today cannot be solved by the level of thinking that created them."
~ Albert Einstein  (1879-1955) – German American Physicist

As Albert Einstein so rightfully put it, history has been made by focusing on physical problems, wars over territory and materials based on greed, power, and ignorance regarding our true human nature.

“Be the change you want to see in the world.” 

Mahatma Gandhi (1869-1948) Indian reformer for independence

1) You can only change yourself

If you have not learned that lesson yet, you can avoid a lot of frustration by not trying to change others.  This is the best time to heal yourself and your past, to let go of unwanted emotions and memories.  Once you are healed you can heal others or at least assist them in their healing journey.  We have to stop the blame game and not criticize and judge each other.  Hurt people hurt people.  Once we can break that cycle, true change can take place on the individual level.

"We're not human beings having a spiritual experience. We're spiritual beings having a human experience."

~ Dr. Waye Dyer (1940-) American author and spiritual teacher

2) The spiritual age gives equal opportunity to all

History was dominated by men who are task-oriented, authoritarian, and domineering.  The time has come for women to come forward and share their female qualities in communication, cooperation and consistency.  Neither of these qualities are better; they need to complement each other.  Now is the time where women can shine and contribute their leadership qualities.  By integrating the male and female energies and giving both sexes an equal chance, we will see true changes taking place.

3) Is December 21, 2012 going to be the end of the world?

According to different prophesies like the Mayan calendar at the end of next year great changes will take place.  Just like Y2K or other predictions, I don’t believe the earth will end.  That’s one promise we have from the bible:

“Generations come and generations go, but the earth remains forever.”

~ Ecclesiastes 1:4

We will experience great transformation though.  It is up to each one of us how we are going to react to these changes.  The important thing is that we connect to our source of life, God, our creator.  Everything else depends on our attitude.  Do we want to be victims to our circumstances and become depressed, shrink and withdraw or do we want to be become our true authentic self and become the victor?  We need a revolution from selfishness to unselfishness.  True Peace can only come through peace of mind. 

St. John of the Cross spoke of the “Dark Night of the Soul.”  It looks like we have to go through the dark night first before we can enjoy the dawn of the New Spiritual Age.