Tag Archives: spirituality

High Hopes for the New Year

3 Jan

Anyone who has read my stuff or known me for any length of time know that I don’t do resolutions for the new year. I do resolutions, just not based around what month/day it is. About mid-December I decided to make one of these resolutions, but I haven’t quite had the ability to begin working toward my goals because of moving and finances and so on.

That goal is to buy an item to donate to homeless shelters/food banks every time I go shopping. I know firsthand that people donate more around the holidays. In fact, the Christmas season is enough to keep us stocked for most of the year in things like toys and treats, and we really don’t get too much the rest of the time. While that is great, this is something that we really should work on. Hunger and homelessness are something that are always an issue, not just when it’s cold out (though that is especially awful). Now, the next thing that I have to say might be a little on the unpopular side, but I really have a hard time getting on board for giving toys to kids for Christmas. I’ve also seen firsthand how some parents can afford several gifts, but not as many as they’d like to give so they ask for more. I’ve also seen children who get a “cheap” toy (think off-brand) and they scoff at it and don’t want it. Toys are important but I also think it is important to focus on something other than the commercial aspect of Christmas, and find better ways to teach them giving, caring, and family values.  That is why, when I heard about a program called “Gifts for Grands” I became so excited!

This program focuses on elderly people in nursing homes similar facilities. Think about how sad it can be when family stops coming for these people. The things they want aren’t extravagant, either, but every day necessities like soap and socks. I didn’t hear about it soon enough to be useful, but in the future I’m hoping to focus on giving in this manner.

I’m not here to preach, but I am here to share in knowledge, experience, and growth. I often ask my readers to join in with me on any challenges I do, and this one isn’t any different. I have a short list of things that I hear are really high in demand, so I’m not only buying food, but other daily necessities, too. Socks and tampons/pads are high up there (let that sink in for a moment). Non-perishable foods are always important, too. I have my eye on things like canned green beans and corn, but also things like beans, and even Craisins (just recently discovered and they are so delicious!).

Finally, before I’m finished, I don’t want to reflect back on 2015. I want to talk about 2016, and I have high hopes for this year. I woke up in a wonderful mood, and while I’m looking forward, I always have to give the disclaimer that this is how I feel now. That is the problem with resolutions. We make them with our best intentions, but times and people and situations change, so what is right January 1 might not be right June 1, or even January 2.

My hopes for the new year are to cut down on some debt that I’ve accumulated, and begin saving again. I have my sites set on a new car come the end of next year. I want to make my friendships a priority again (I started this a few months back) and see more of each of the people that I love so dearly. I also hope to finally get that significant other I’ve been pining for, and I think I’ve already taken some positive steps toward getting there. I also want to become more spiritual (for those of you who don’t know it, I’m actually a very spiritual person). I’d like to cook more (how many times have I said that) but I don’t foresee that changing in any less than 3 months. I’d also like to become more active. More hiking this summer, more yoga, and I’d like to pick up something fun like kick-boxing.

Those are my hopes. That is how I’m feeling now (and does it feel nice, indeed!). We’ll see where the year takes me!

Are you going to join me with my donations goals (we can totally co-blog about it!)? Any other ideas of hot commodities to buy? What are your hopes for the coming year? 

Why the Single Life isn’t for Me

12 Sep

This post is in response to @buddy71, who on my previous post The Road to Peace, was interested in why having a significant other is so important to me.

It is a common question, especially from folks who either “love being single” or are currently in a relationship and “miss being single”. My disclaimer is as follows: I am a strong, independent, whole human being. I know who I am and I know what I want in life. I know where I’m going and where I’ve been. A significant other, while nice, does not define who I am, just as my choice in music does not define who I am.

The reason having a significant other is so important to me is actually quite simple. If you take all of the things I am and all of the things I do, you’ll find that some people bring out certain things more than others. I’ll use my love of video games and my love of being outside as an example. When I have strong relationships in my life, one of those may lie “dormant”. This means that if my best friend (or lover, or close sibling, etc) loves video games, I’m going to spend much more time playing video games than if my best friend (etc.) loves going hiking (in which case, video games are more likely to lay dormant because I’m spending so much time outside). Neither is more “right” or “better”, I am just able to express different parts of myself at different times.

This is why I like having a significant other. While my love for video games is great, as is my love for being outside, my desire to have someone to care for and love is a much more integral part of who I am. It is a part of myself that is very difficult to express without having a nice fellow in my life.

And it is a part of myself that I very much like to express, akin to my love of animals, and my quest for knowledge.

So yes, I am whole. That part of me is inside, and while unable to be fully expressed, I find myself caring very deeply for friends and very passionate about the things that I do. I just would like the ability to fully express it.

What are some pieces of yourself that are integral to your being? Do you ever find yourself in a similar situation to mine?

The Road to Peace

10 Sep

To say that I’ve been struggling lately is quite the understatement, as the universe seems to have handed me the perfect storm. Feeling the need to find a new job is one thing, as is feeling the need to move. But the overwhelming urgency to find a new job, a new car, a new place to live in a new town, a boyfriend, and wanting to get rid of your pets without the support of friends, said boyfriend, or said pets is a different story entirely.

I’m no stranger to this, though, and after a somewhat embarrassing gush of emotion to a friend I discovered that nothing would change unless I centered myself and focused my efforts on something. The problem isn’t these things. 

The problem was me.

I spread myself so thin worrying about all of these things, that everything was crumbling and slipping through my fingers, no matter how desperately I tried to hold on and pick up the pieces.

I needed to do some soul-searching and find my center again. Most people wouldn’t describe me as “spiritual”, if for no other reason than the fact that I’m atheist.

I would, though. I am a very spiritual person.

[Some might also call me superstitious, but that is a story for another day.]

What did I do? Well, I sat down on my bed and did some brief meditating over my tarot cards, and I did 3 spreads. In those spreads, I found my answer. I found what I needed to let go of, and what I needed to work on. And it was wonderful.

The next day, I got home from work, and did my very first yoga session, armed with nothing but me, a towel, and a very excitable, very eager dog.

Rinse, and repeat.

Today, I had a tai chi session, followed by a yoga session, followed by a delightful session of writing. Sometimes you strive for so much control, that you begin losing control. That was where I was. The universe had different plans for me, and to gain the control I am looking for in my life, it just turns out I had to give up the control, first.

Inter-Religion Marriage

4 Sep

A comment, made by @ANVRSADDAY, on my previous blog about mistakes made me think about something I don’t often think about: inter-religion marriage.

In my own life, I can’t say that I would never marry someone with religious beliefs different than mine, but if I did he would have to have pretty relaxed beliefs, and could in no way be a die-hard religious fanatic. For me, though, its a little different because I don’t believe in God. That, in itself, pins me against almost every religion. With those people who do believe in a God, there is a vast number of combinations of denominations and religions that can work together.

Even if I did believe in God, the implications of having different religions would be minimal. I think the biggest reason its a complication in a marriage, is the decision of what to raise the child as. I’m not having children, so that is of no concern to me (although I do believe children should be exposed to as many religions as possible, and allowed to make their own choice).

Would you be comfortable marrying someone of a different religion than you? Do you think its okay for other people