To Heaven and Back

To Heaven and BackTo Heaven and Back, by Mary C. Neal, MD, is a beautiful “extraordinary account of her death, Heaven, angels, and life again.”

Although pretty spectacular in and of itself, the author’s death experience is not the only facet to this book.  Dr. Neal relates events from her childhood through life past that singular death event, how they all intertwine for her, and how that relates to each of us.  She writes in a flowing, easily read manner that is about what she has to say and not about who is saying it.  You will not be disappointed when you are not reading specifically about her death experience, which is why you picked it up in the first place!

Her writing and message transcend occupations and lifestyles, instead directly accessing hope, joy, and love.  The book is about each of our personal spiritual journeys.  Our journey encompasses this life and crosses over into the next, she shows that the two are not at all separate.

My dear friend Wendy loaned me her copy, and because I trust her book recommendations implicitly I gave it a shot.  It was one of those deals where I didn’t really have the time, and I kind of forced myself to start it–and found I absolutely could not put it down!  I did have to set it aside and breathe a little throughout reading, giving my spirit the chance to absorb such beauty.  It is more profound than heavy, as it is incredibly supportive and uplifting in such a strong and gentle way without weighing down the reader.

The back of the book tells me that the author made the national media circuit with this book, and I am disappointed I missed that!  I’m going to search Google and YouTube to see if I can find those clips on the Internet.  After reading her story, I’m interested to see and hear her talk about it!

Activate Your Goodness

Activate Your Goodness

English: Israeli-American businesswoman Shari ...

English: Israeli-American businesswoman Shari Arison עברית: תמונה של שרי אריסון. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Activate Your Goodness: Transforming the World by Doing Good by Shari Arison is based on the premise of “think good, speak good, do good.”  This philosophy is explored at all its levels: individual, family and friends, community, country, humanity, and planet.  The idea that thinking, speaking, and doing good is a concept that works personally as well as in business is also discussed.  I especially like that she says “doing good is good business”–and as a hugely successful businesswoman, she has the credentials to prove this!  In addition to her business success, she has created the annual International Good Deeds Day, as well as the internet Gateway to Doing Good–www.goodnet.org.

Simply by reading this book my goodness began to accidentally get activated, as I find myself with the concept running through my head like a mantra.  It is easier to catch my thoughts and redirect them because this book specifies my awareness.  It is easier to remember in the moment to speak consciously as well, as this book focuses application of the concepts.  And, I find myself following through on ideas rather than remaining in the “wouldn’t this be great to do” phase, again because of heightened understanding of the process and choice of activating goodness.  That’s a triple threat to insidious negativity within everyday living, woo-hoo!

I encourage you to pick up this book!  It is a quick read that flows well.  One individual activating their goodness could just be the tipping point for all of humanity, and even if you are already on that path this book will help you take it to the next level in a subtle and personal way that greatly affects all.

I received this book from Hay House in exchange for my honest opinion of it, for goodness’ sake!

Hay HouseAmazonBarnes & NobleChapters Indigo

Promptly Writing

In our community electric co-op’s monthly newsletter is a section of want ads.  Today I read one that absolutely stopped me in my tracks for its sheer creative writing potential.  There’s a story in here.  Heck, there are a thousand stories in here.

What’s yours?

WANTED TO BUY: Steel fence posts and a double barrel shotgun

Photo courtesy of Focus West Gallery

Photo courtesy of Focus West Gallery

Grace Under Attack Forges A Warrior

Just as I was going to bed last night I got a phone call.  The woman on the other end called me by name, gushed about how it’s been ten long years since she’s been in town, and when she finally identified herself I still was fuzzy on why I was getting this call.  Then she asks to speak to my son Joe.

I don’t have a son Joe.

It turns out she is looking for the school-aged son of my ex’s current wife, and thinks he might live here.  (What?!?) Additionally, she is calling on behalf of the church we escaped from last year.  Then she shares how much my neighbor really hates me.  Because I got divorced.  (Yes, all those actual words were used.  It’s also been over 8 years.)  I am not making any of this up.

Have you ever found yourself in a situation of balancing grace with defending your boundaries?  Here’s how my internal conversation went:

Grace: Okay, this woman is a little off-kilter, let’s be understanding and just end this conversation.

Warrior: This is an invasion.  I need to protect and defend. Now.

Grace: Well yes, but let’s give her the benefit of the doubt, she probably feels pretty awkward and is looking for an escape.

Warrior: I don’t care, she Just. Keeps. Going.  I’ve had enough, and she needs to stop. Now.

Grace: You’re doing a great job keeping in check, I keep politely shutting her down, I’m sure she’ll bow out now.  Okay, maybe now.  Hmm, likely now?  Wait–no way: is she really talking about and asking after my kids…?!

Warrior: That’s it–out of my way.

Grace: Here’s your sword.

At this point in the conversation Warrior bluntly said that I am not discussing my family, and that this conversation was over.  The woman on the phone finally got the message, apologized for bothering me, and Grace was able to not hang up in her face.

Warrior Woman Silhouette

It is not a question of either being kind or defending your boundaries, the two are the same.  Grace reminds the Warrior that a sword can point as well as chop.

Flow in Peace

Isn’t it great how we get to practice all the time?  My balance is challenged lately, with a vengeance.  I’ve slipped into a state that I like to think of as temporary–as in, “this too shall pass.”

My problem is that I seem to have accepted that this is how it is, even if for now.  I think I told myself it’s best for my sanity, or at least it’s how to make it through the right now-ness.  I’d like to slide back into the mindset of creating my reality, and choosing each day (or moment!).

I don’t want to embrace the chaos: to me that means joining in on it, or at the very least accepting it as okay.  I want to flow in peace in the midst of the chaos.  I want to let go of feeling like I must conquer it in order to then have peace about it.

I’m home now, breathing easy in the comforting arms of my family.  Good news, I get to practice my renewed approach tomorrow!

I am peace.

Image courtesy of DarkJade at The Written Word

Image courtesy of DarkJade at The Written Word

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