Quality of Life

Some people like to say, "Eat well, do good, get exercise, and die anyway," as some sort of excuse for partying, being unhealthy and/or being inconsiderate. This logic has no place in a happy, fulfilling and successful life. Regardless of when you die, you want the life you live today, and tomorrow to be the best life you can possibly have. There is no excuse for not doing the best for yourself and the best you can for those you love. Even if I were going to die in six months, I still would continue my diet exactly as I do (if not do even better) because I want the highest quality for my life. The quantity is quite irrelevant.

~Raederle Phoenix Jacot

"Are you really sure that a floor can't also be a ceiling?" ~ M. C. Escher

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

A Hot Bath

About an hour ago I was doing some yoga on my hot-pink yoga mat and thinking about what positions and movements to do in order to give my abs a full work out. I became really sweaty and felt I needed a shower. I went to the bathroom and decided that I actually wanted a nice hot bath.

Hot baths are excellent. I've come to realize that it ought to be the third thing you do when you have a physical ailment, not the very last thing you try. (The first thing should be a glass of water. The second thing should be a large bowl of your favorite sort of salad which should be made up of at least half green leaves.)

I find that despite the many pills available, none of them work as well on cramps as a hot bath. Although, I've love to try putting silk tassel to work on cramps, but unfortunately it doesn't grow in the middle of apartment-complex-central.

I've also found hot baths to sooth stress, any form of muscle cramp, irritated skin, infections, and so forth. It seems like the cheapest and most effective quick-fix than anyone with a bathtub has lying around.

Baths are also excellent for reflecting. I had this amazing realization while I was pondering the evils of Monsanto and other corporations in the tub. I suddenly caught the word 'evils' and paused on it. The evils of who exactly? And then it hit me...

No person is evil. The situation is what's evil.

I'm certain that the people behind creating such awful chemicals have really rough situations and traumas that have led them to make depraved and difficult choices in their lives.

On a slightly unrelated topic;

An old friend of mine asked me for a run-down on my current life. I wrote;

"I'm recently married. I'm spending most of my time writing my new health blog and researching for it. I've started an indoor edible garden including strawberries, tomatoes, thyme, sage and basil. I'm working on becoming more and more informed about everything I buy now that I fully understand that the vote doesn't happen in the poll-booth, it happens in the store. I'm thinking about going back to working on a fantasy novel I was writing a few years ago.

"I'm doing yoga daily and going out to do it about once a week. I'm having raw food potlucks at my apartment and attending them as often as I can. I'm learning how to eat as much raw and fresh produce as possible, and learning the dangers and idiocy of cooking food (or worse, microwaving it), and am about to start researching stocks this week so my husband and I can make some informed investments in some forward-thinking companies."

My Indoor Garden

And yet, I still wish I could milk more hours out of every day for more digital painting, poetry, blogging, researching, dancing, singing, making love, thinking and playing.


A political cartoon I found moving;

And here is an article I found to be very, very well informed and well written. Eliot Spitzer discusses how the incentives we create drive corporations to do what they do, and how it won't change if we don't change the regulations. The best read I've seen that had anything to do with the oil spill.

Bayer; Advertisements Are Misleading

I don't usually watch any advertisements since I rarely watch any television, and when I used to, I had a DVR and I recorded everything I watched and fast-forwarded through all the ads. Now, however, I watch a bit of anime on Hulu which has "limited commercial interruption."

I think this is great, in theory. I love that I can find anime streaming high-quality on the net with the small price of non-skipable advertisements. The concept is fine, and I have no argument with that in and of itself.

What bothers me is the content of these advertisements. There is one I just watched showing women touching a rhino (or perhaps an elephant; I was thinking about what the ad was saying more than I was focusing on the animal being touched) with blindfolds on. The women report guesses as to what they're touching. They suggest it might be things like a "wall" or a "pipe" and the narrator goes on to say that you should get the full picture before making judgments.

Yes. You should get the full picture - what a wonderful message. It would have been warmly received if it wasn't an advertisement for Bayer birth control. First of all, to get the whole picture, you have to consider that birth control is dangerous.

I'm not saying I don't use a form of it, but I certainly don't use Yaz, or get a shot loaded with three months worth of contraceptive stuck in my rear either. Those are just bad life choices, really and truly. (A friend in high school actually lost her period entirely and required more drugs to get it started again after using the shot, not to mention gaining twenty pounds.)

Whenever you put any drug in your body, you are putting yourself at risk. That's why it's called a 'drug' as opposed to a 'food.' No drug is 'safe' - not a single one. They all have some risks.

Now, let's talk about Bayer, as a company. Just as a quick run-down; Bayer became a big name when it became part of a conglomerate company owned by Nazis. Bayer creates a pesticide shown to be destroying bee colonies. Bayer had a drug created that they knew was contaminated with HIV, and after taking it off the market in America they turned around and sold it in other countries (the FDA was aware of this, and did nothing.)

Are you thinking to yourself, "Bayer... That sounds familiar?" You probably have a Bayer product in your home right now;

Advertising; Made To SELL, Not to Educate

Yes, they're the company that makes the Asprin you mostly likely buy. Do you really want to keep giving these murderers your money?

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Imagination Fitness

"The power of imagination makes us infinite." - John Muir

"The exercise of the visualizing faculty keeps your mind in order. It attracts to you the things you need to make your life more enjoyable in an orderly way. If you train yourself in the practice of deliberately picturing your desire and carefully examining it, you will soon find your thought and desires come and proceed in more orderly procession than ever before. Having reached a state of ordered mentality, you are no longer in a constant state of mental hurry. Hurry is fear and consequently destructive." Genevieve Behrend, "Your Invisible Power"

"Your family and your love must be cultivated like a garden. Time, effort, and imagination must be summoned constantly to keep any relationship flourishing and growing." - Kim Rohn

The Brain

When you use your brain, little electronic signals are emitted. This has been scientifically proven. It's widely believed that these signals have a much wider effect that science can explain through electronic signals.

"It is well known that the brain is an electrochemical organ; researchers have speculated that a fully functioning brain can generate as much as 10 watts of electrical power. Other more conservative investigators calculate that if all 10 billion interconnected nerve cells discharged at one time that a single electrode placed on the human scalp would record something like five millionths to 50 millionths of a volt. If you had enough scalps hooked up you might be able to light a flashlight bulb." - The Function Of Brainwaves

Water Crystals

Although there have been some studies, such as the ones with water crystals reacting to thoughts and words. Startling pictures reveal that water reacts tremendously to our words and thoughts. Some have devoted their life's study to water, such as a man called Emoto who said;

"When I was a child, I learned from my mother that 'water is a reflection of your soul,'
"In remembering that experience, I decided to embark on this current research for and with water." - The Mystical Properties of Water


It's widely believed by those who practice Reiki (and other forms of spiritual healing) that there is great power in one's intention. That through intention we may use our energy to heal others. I personally can attest to having a physical affliction healed through this method that was very memorable to me.

Personal Experience

I was around nine or ten at the time. I had gotten a bug bite of some sort, and hadn't had the sense to leave it alone. The first day it was perhaps the size of a dime. After two days of scratching, applying Benedryl, anti-itch creams, and using ice, it was around the size of a child's palm. After another couple of days the pain had become unbearable, as it has swollen up, and began to burn constantly. It stretched from an inch short of my wrist to an inch short of the inside of my elbow. It was disgustingly hideous to see.

I tried to stop scratching by using ice, and by wearing long-sleeve shirts, but I was having difficulty with using any will-power against the more and more overpowering urge to scratch.

I remember vividly that I was in my mother's office and I was complaining about how much it hurt. She was telling me something along the lines of how it served me right for scratching it so much, and then adding that there was nothing she could do about it.

My father walked in and inquired as to what the problem was. I showed him my arm, looking for sympathy. He asked what it was, and I told him that it had started as a bug bite nearly a week ago. He quietly took my arm between his hands and covered the entire sore area with his hand. It itched terribly as he held it, but there was also a soothing sort of feeling as well as a sensation that I can only describe as feeling like one's circulation is being sped up.

He held my arm for what felt like an interminably long time. At some point the itching stopped, but the 'rushing of blood' sensation continued to grow stronger. Then, finally, with a long exhale he released my arm. To my astonishment (and my mother's) the redness, and swelling was completely gone, and so was the itching. There was no sign whatsoever that it had ever been there.

There are two explanations for this, either of which I believe are correct, but one is more easily swallowed by people who think 'scientifically' and the other is more easily swallowed by those who think 'spiritually.' Although I personally think there is no real separation between science and spirituality except the separation that we make in our perceptions.

Spiritual Explanation

The spiritual explanation is that he used his chakra (chi, energy, light, etc) to send direction to my energy to heal. His energy sucked out the negative energy from the inflamed area, and gave direction to my body to flow the blood out of the swollen area, and to cease itching, since there was no further use in doing so.

Scientific Explanation

The scientific explanation (although not provable at this time, I'm quite sure that it could be proven given funding and time) would be that his brain transmitted imagery and information throughout his body, affecting the water in every cell of the body. The information can then be transmitted to the cells of another person's body given that their mind is relaxed and not over-riding the information with thoughts like 'this won't work' or other negative thoughts. The information flow will grow stronger and stronger as both the giver and receiver imagine that it is happening. The "imagining" is not separate from what is actually happening, since the brain-signals are what is directing the occurrence, although the imagination could be exaggerated from the actuality by quite a degree.

Thereby, the 'healer' uses the discipline of their mind and focus, and the strength of their body's energy to send the right signals to the other person.

Pay It Forward; With Imagination

Consider the implications.

Your mind has the power to influence the particles of everything your body comes into contact with. It's the same principle as "pay it forward" only with thoughts.

Self-Fulling Prophesy

When you think negative thoughts, you are creating a self-fulfilling prophesy. "How can a prophesy fullfill itself?" you ask. Let me give you a short personal example;

An ex-boyfriend of mine whom I was deeply in love with was always paranoid that I would leave him. I couldn't understand why; he had the potential to be everything I had ever wanted in a mate, but somehow he came up short via broken promises and a lack of real commitment.

He claimed I was everything he wanted in a woman, but continually proclaimed that it didn't matter what he did because I was going to leave him anyway. He said he didn't want to give up drinking and partying 'with the boys' because that would mean that when I left him he wouldn't have friends to fall back on. But this was the exact behavior that led me to leave him close to two and half years into the relationship.

It was literally his paranoia that I would leave him that caused the string of events that led to breakup. A perfect example of why fear is the enemy of love, as well as a perfect example of a self-fulfilling prophesy.

Becoming Orderly

If you want to have a life that is not only filled with material wealth, but also with the wealth of the soul and heart, you must have a strong imagination. This does not mean you need to be creative. This only means you need to take the time to visualize your future.

When you take the time to visualize something, you will see any errors in the design and automatically change them. For example, if you visualize yourself going to the beach on the morning you plan on going to the beach, and you imagine lying on your towel in the hot sun next to the hot sand, and walking through the hot sand and letting the water lap over your toes, then you won't forget the sunscreen, the towel (the extra towel for after the one you're lying on gets sandy) or the bottled water. If you imagine the wind picking up and blowing your hair you might think to bring a wrap in case it becomes windy. If you imagine the feel of the sun on your face, you'll remember your sunhat.

These visualizations organize your brain and keep your focused. Your memory improves, as well as your direction and happiness. What you imagine will be a preview of what will come to pass. As Genevieve Behrend stated, you won't be in a constant state of mental hurry when the mind is orderly. Orderliness comes with using your imagination daily in a constructive manner.


Your day should be a mental stroll, not a sprint. The difference between people who get angry at tangled cords and people who simply find the knot, and untangle it without so much as ruffling the contours of their face, are the pace as which they think. When you slow things down and take the time to visualize where you are and contrast that with your goal, the answers become clearer and clearer.

Imagining what you don't want to have happen; bad traffic, trouble at the office, not having time for breakfast; will cause it to happen. If you think those thoughts in vivid detail each night (and/or morning), and then fear them coming to fruition... Bang! Manifestation. If you take the time to construct a mental picture of how you wish your day to begin tomorrow before you go to sleep, and visualize the best possible day first thing in the morning, then you'll find that your day goes more smoothly. You'll also find it easier to parry those unexpected glitches in the system and find ways to be productive and peaceful when held up by mundane and unchangeable things such as traffic.

Strengthening Your Imagination

When you first begin to do mini-meditations, your mind will wander quite often. This is fine, and you shouldn't let it bother you. Just try to stay present and aware of yourself and your thought patterns. Pay close attention to how one thought follows another. Pay even closer attention to how you end up thinking negative things and redirect your thoughts towards gratitude.


Grateful people tend to be more optimistic, a characteristic that researchers say boosts the immune system. "There are some very interesting studies linking optimism to better immune function," says Lisa Aspinwall, PhD, a psychology professor at the University of Utah. - Boosting Your Health With Gratitude

Being grateful has actually been shown to boost many aspects of your health and functions of your life. When you find yourself at the crux of a serious issue, instead of dwelling, create a deep vivid image of something you're genuinely grateful for. Not something you think you ought to be grateful for, but something you are truly grateful for.


In the art of Tantra (a yogic practice designed to increase happiness and to especially increase sexual satisfaction and spirituality in the bedroom) is often taught to include the practice of the Mini Meditation.

This is a mental practice where you take time to notice how your body feels; where are you warm, where are you cold, are you comfortable, are you stiff, do you feel you use a glass of water? And so forth.

And then, after taking a moment to notice, listen and adjust your body, then take the time to notice your mental state. Are you happy, are you feeling down, do you feel optimistic, do you feel centered, are you annoyed? And so forth.

After taking a minute to contemplate your physical well being and another full minute to contemplate your mental well being, take a third minute to visualize what you would find the most desirable. It can be what you desire right now, what you desire tomorrow, or what you desire ten years down the line.

In the course of this three-minute mini-meditation you will come closer in contact with your wants, needs and goals, and thereby automatically come closer to reaching your wants, needs and goals. By doing this three minute meditation several times a day, or even daily, you'll find you have a better and better understanding of yourself.

"Knowing others is intelligence; knowing yourself is true wisdom. Mastering others is strength; mastering yourself is true power."

"Know thyself." - Socrates

"It is wisdom to know others; It is enlightenment to know one's self." - Lao-Tzu

Create A Vivid Metal Image

Imagine yourself. Don't force the image to appear any certain way. Just let it come naturally as it does. Using force will agitate the mind and distort your mental imagery. Allow your thoughts to be dream-like images. Use all of your senses.

If you're imagining the hypothetical trip to the beach as I alluded to earlier, then your imagination should include the sounds of the waves, the screeching of the birds. It should include the smell of the salty ocean water and the scent of sunscreen, deodorant and/or sweat. It should include the taste of what you will bring with you for lunch. (Hopefully a healthy raw snack!) It should include the sensation of sand in between your toes, and the feeling of the water rushing up over your feet and washing that sand away, as well as the feeling of the sun on your face and body.

Attracting Wealth

This practice will attract wealth. As your senses and imagination becomes more sharp, it becomes more real. You'll have more inspired ideas, and you'll feel inclined to act on them immediately. The right people will meet you at the right times. You'll experience what other people call 'luck.'

Things will neatly




This will happen as a direct result or organizing your mind through imagination. Use the three minute meditation whenever you have three minutes to kill in order to increase your awareness, and thereby your health, wealth, wisdom and happiness.

Friday, June 11, 2010

How To Love Your Life

An old friend from high school asked me if I was still living where I grew up. I replied;

"No, I've moved actually. I'm near San Fransisco in Northern California. I might be in Buffalo, NY for a while again sometime in the next year. It might just be for two weeks while I gather the rest of my stuff for when my fiance and I move to Boston, or it might be for six months or so while we save up some more money for the move to Boston."

(I promise I'm going somewhere with this, otherwise I wouldn't post it.) She said;

"Wow, I wish I had that much excitement in my life :(
"If I had full custody of my son (and the extra cash) we'd move south.
"Have I ever mentioned how much I hate Buffalo?"

I frowned as I read this response, for several reasons. But the most unexpected reason I frowned was because I dislike when people are down on my home city. It's a negative attitude that just seems to spread and doesn't help anything. I replied;

Buffalo isn't the issue. I actually miss the city a lot.

It's all about the network of people you associate with. I just stopped talking to anyone who had 'drama' in their life. I wasn't mean about it, but I just stopped going out of my way to talk to anyone who was constantly making trouble or attracting trouble.

Then I went to meetup.com and found groups on yoga, writing, meditation, nutrition and went out and met people completely unconnected to the people I knew before and started a new life. It's the best thing I ever did for myself.

I gained a new perspective. I discovered that Buffalo is full of wonderful people. It's just that when you're hanging around people who party all weekend, smoke pot all week, steal from their friends and stab each other in the back, then you just keep meeting more of the same kind of people.

The networks of people who are kind, level-headed, educated and interesting don't generally associate with the networks of people who do drugs and party all the time. It's sad, but it's true.

Buffalo is pretty awesome when you get into the networks of college students, yogi-folk, and nutrition-driven people. Plus, there is so much to see around there that there just isn't in so many other places in the country. There are so many free festivals and events all summer long it's hard to keep up with them all, just from memory; The Infringement Festival, Taste of Buffalo, Shakespeare In The Park, Juneteenth, Alan Town Art Festival, Dance Alive put on monthly by the Blood Thirsty Vegans, Urban Epiphany yearly at the UU church, and there are more but that's just off the top of my head.

I've been on two road-trips (one for 23 days when I was 17, and one for six weeks less than a year ago) all around the US with my father. (This is expensive, but not as expensive as you'd imagine. I used couch-surfing for a lot of the places we stopped to rest on the six-week trip in February/March 2010, and both trips we stayed with several of my online friends as well as family members and spent a lot of nights sleeping in the car as well. A lot of couch-surfing hosts, family members and friends are willing to provide food, so that can cut down on expense a lot as well. That leaves the only unavoidable expense being gas for the car and any car maintenance that may need doing. If you have an old honda that's good on gas like my parents do, it's a big help.)

We saw Sedona, Arizona, we saw Atlanta, Georgia. We saw Cary and Asheville, North Carolina. We've been lost in Oregon's massive national parks (where people have died from getting lost, no kidding), and wandered through the massive corn fields of Kansas and Iowa. We've been through Texas, and Alabama, and went 'shopping' in New Orleans (I bought an awesome trench coat). We spent a couple days in South Lake Tahoe on the border of California and Nevada, a few days in Oklahoma City, and in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

I'll tell you, Buffalo is an awesome city. It's not perfect, but no place is. You'll have the same problems anywhere you live if you hang out with the sort of people you and I used to hang out with back in high school.

Some of them are nice people, some of them have good intentions, some of them are intelligent; but it's just not worth it when missing money, broken beer bottles, and drunken arguing is a part of one's life. I really wish I could go back and help the better people who are still stuck in that place I used to be stuck in. I reflect on it often and am often left feeling very sad for quite a period of time.

~Raederle Phoenix

As a side note, it was during the first road trip when I was seventeen that I got so drunk I vomited all night. I was in Iowa. I have not drank since, except for a few sips of wine that didn't even get me tipsy, although they did upset my stomach a little. (2007)

I quit smoking weed around six months before the second road trip. As an ex-smoker I can testify that the drug is very enjoyable when used infrequently and when used with very good company. When random people get together who are mostly bad news to smoke together, it can be a very bad experience. I'd also like to state that I think it would be handled more responsibly if it were legalized. (2009/2010)

I stopped hanging out with my so-called high school friends mostly before I even left high-school in my Senior year. (2006)

At seventeen I had a rush of parties shortly before the first road trip because I had been feeling lonely and wanted to see if I could become popular. I became 'popular' with a large crowd of flunkies and realized that I didn't like it and started being as boring and un-fun as possible. (2007)

I started focusing on things I really care about such as art and writing, as well as love (of course) when I was eighteen and nineteen, and began to discover what my real priorities were, especially as I lost weight due to my change in diet. I became happy for the first time in my life during those years. (2008)

I took up yoga, and renewed my interest in meditation and positive thinking when I was nineteen and twenty. I started attending events with positive-thinking people. I hosted board-game parties and attending many as well. I joined a writer's group with bi-weekly meetings that renewed my interest in novel writing. I joined a Raw Food group and met a wealth of friendly, healthy and positive people. And overall, my horizons broadened and my priorities and goals became more defined. (2009)

And now, I can honestly say that I've never been more healthy in my life, that I've never been more happy in my life, and that everyone I know and communicate with is a positive light in my life. Sure, I still have days when I'm down, but generally those days are caused by eating something that doesn't agree with me - no kidding. (2010)

There are a lot of aspects of happiness. Some of them are temporary, external influences such as a death, or a pay raise. To get a lasting change in your happiness you need a lasting change in your understanding of life that results in a lasting change to your lifestyle.

If you're not happy, you have to admit that there is something wrong with the way you're living your life. You can blame it on others all you want, but there are people out there who have less than you do, who are very happy and satisfied. Why are they happy, and you're not?

One possible reason is that they recognize that being happy is the deepest meaning of life. That being becoming happy and staying that way is all they need to do.

Another possible reason that people with "less" are happier than you is because they recognize that helping others makes them happier than helping themselves.

Here are some further entries of mine that will help grow your understanding towards becoming happy (listed from very relevant, to the only somewhat relevant):

Keys To Happiness

Poisons: Things That Will Make You Miserable

Oxytocin: The Natural Chemical Reaction Creating Love

The Power of your Imagination

Changing Your Negative Habits

Drinking: It Affects More Than Your Health

The Cage You're In

Wednesday, June 09, 2010

The Best Activist Song Eva

To help you get your tail in gear...

"We're just fucking monkeys in shoes."

We'd be a lot happier if we just behaved like monkeys in shoes too!

Monday, June 07, 2010

So... The Bible Says Homosexuality Is A Sin... Hrm.

"The bible says that homosexuality is a sin. Clear as day; black and white in the bible."

You've heard that before, right?

Well, it's also a sin not to treat your body like a temple, and for women not to have their hair covered. In Deuteronomy, a marriage is only valid if the woman is a virgin, and she should be executed if she isn't. Anyone who commits adultery should be stoned to death. In Mark, divorce is prohibited. Homosexuality is mentioned in Leviticus 18:6: "You shall not lie with a male as one lies with a female. It is an abomination." And two verses later in Leviticus 20:13; "A man who sleeps with another man is an abomination and should be executed." Leviticus is a holiness code written over 3,000 years ago. It also includes prohibitions against round haircuts, tattoos, working on the Sabbath, wearing garments of mixed fabrics, eating pork or shellfish, getting your fortune told, and even playing with the skin of a pig. In other words; no more football.

Let's talk morality; up to date morality that makes logical sense in today's society. Let's look at the universal right; "Do unto others as you would have them do unto you." Everyone may choose for themselves their own morality, but I prefer to believe everyone does what they do because they, like I, just want to be happy and feel satisfied with their life.

Is it moral to judge someone because of what someone else said, or because a book told you to? I think not. "The Bible says so" is not a justification for hurting someone, talking poorly about someone, or judging someone. There is no justification for those things, ever. That person that is hurt, or talked down to is just as human as you are.

If you think they're less human than you are because they are different than you, then perhaps it's time for a good long look in the mirror. When did you become god?


Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell has rescinded ex-Gov. Tim Kaine’s order protecting gay state workers from job discrimination. This discrimination seems reasonable to people who believe that the Bible is the word of God, because the Bible says that male homosexuality is “abomination,” for which the penalty is to be “cut off from among their people.” (Leviticus 18:22 and 29).

A letter to Dr. Laura Schlessinger, who has in the past expressed similar views about homosexuality, has gone viral on the web. Although the letter—author unknown—has been around for at least ten years, and may never actually have been sent to Dr. Laura, its reasoning is worth thinking about, especially in view of Gov. McDonnell’s action and the battles about same-sex marriage. The biblical references in the letter are accurate.

Dear Dr. Laura:

Thank you for doing so much to educate people regarding God’s Law. I have learned a great deal from your show, and try to share that knowledge with as many people as I can. When someone tries to defend the homosexual lifestyle, for example, I simply remind them that Leviticus 18:22 clearly states it to be an abomination… End of debate.

I do need some advice from you, however, regarding some other elements of God’s Laws and how to follow them.

1. Leviticus 25:44 states that I may possess slaves, both male and female, provided they are purchased from neighboring nations. A friend of mine claims that this applies to Mexicans, but not Canadians. Can you clarify? Why can’t I own Canadians?

2. I would like to sell my daughter into slavery, as sanctioned in Exodus 21:7. In this day and age, what do you think would be a fair price for her?

3. I know that I am allowed no contact with a woman while she is in her period of menstrual uncleanliness – Lev.15: 19-24 The problem is how do I tell? I have tried asking, but most women take offense.

4. When I burn a bull on the altar as a sacrifice, I know it creates a pleasing odor for the Lord – Lev.1:9. The problem is, my neighbors. They claim the odor is not pleasing to them. Should I smite them?

5. I have a neighbor who insists on working on the Sabbath. Exodus 35:2 clearly states he should be put to death. Am I morally obligated to kill him myself, or should I ask the police to do it?

6. A friend of mine feels that even though eating shellfish is an abomination – Lev. 11:10, it is a lesser abomination than homosexuality. I don’t agree. Can you settle this? Are there ‘degrees’ of abomination?

7. Lev. 21:20 states that I may not approach the altar of God if I have a defect in my sight. I have to admit that I wear reading glasses. Does my vision have to be 20/20, or is there some wiggle- room here?

8. Most of my male friends get their hair trimmed, including the hair around their temples, even though this is expressly forbidden by Lev. 19:27. How should they die?

9. I know from Lev. 11:6-8 that touching the skin of a dead pig makes me unclean, but may I still play football if I wear gloves?

10. My uncle has a farm. He violates Lev.19:19 by planting two different crops in the same field, as does his wife by wearing garments made of two different kinds of thread (cotton/polyester blend). He also tends to curse and blaspheme a lot. Is it really necessary that we go to all the trouble of getting the whole town together to stone them? Lev.24:10-16.Couldn’t we just burn them to death at a private family affair, like we do with people who sleep with their in-laws? (Lev. 20:14)

I know you have studied these things extensively and thus enjoy considerable expertise in such matters, so I am confident you can help.

Thank you again for reminding us that God’s word is eternal and unchanging.

Your adoring fan.

Sunday, June 06, 2010

The Cage You're In

This is highly well written, and worth watching.

The Cage You're In

Large government can be bad - but then, if we minimize the government, then who has the power? The large corporations - the ones that control so many jobs and products we rely on. If we take power away from one bully, as long as there is a controllable resource to be had, another bully will seize control of it. The only answer is for us to be less controllable.

Research the companies and countries you give your money to. Your money is your real vote.

The Dirty Fucking Hippies

Are you really going to trust someone, elect someone, give your money to someone who wants to send out our people to go get killed trying to kill other people? What's wrong with you?

Use your dollars to vote for peace, small business and local economic stability. Boycott Monsanto, bp, walmart, and so forth... Those are just the obvious ones; with a few hours of research into the things you buy, I'm sure you'll find you're much happier about certain products (and will feel good when you buy them) and will find yourself motivated to find alternatives to other certain products you buy.

Wednesday, June 02, 2010

No Food Shall Be Grown That Monsanto Don't Own

"In times of universal deceit, telling the truth will be a revolutionary act." - George Orwell

“All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident.” - Arthur Schopenhauer

You are beautiful.

Think outside the box.

Question authority.

Remember that everyone is seeking happiness, just like you.

Love is the key to all happiness.

Remember to ask, "What the fuck?"

Legalize The 'Dangerous' Pot

"Nobody ever died because of pot alone."

That's not true. I know someone who died of cancer of the lungs who only smoked pot. They didn't even live with someone who smoked cigarettes, so that's not a possible cause.

Also, a friend once told me how their best friend quit pot because they ran over three people in their car while driving intoxicated on nothing but pot.

I was in a car accident with someone driving who made a ridiculous stupid mistake while intoxicated on nothing but pot.

And besides all of that, over time it can make it impossible to produce serotonin in the brain on your own. My first love's mother isn't able to produce serotonin in her brain without pot anymore.

"What's serotonin?"

Serotonin is the chemical that your brain creates that makes you feel happiness. That's right; pot makes you dependent on it for happiness. Sure, that does take about thirty years of smoking every day (give or take), but that doesn't change the fact that it's a serious outcome for all the "stoners" out there.

That said, I still say to make it legal.

People will do what they want, regardless. If it's legal, then cops can stop stealing pot from kids, seriously.

More importantly, then people will stop smuggling, and will be able to trade it freely, which will also be much better.

If it were legal, people would be accustomed to the idea of it, and people would be able to choose to be a casual 'once a year' or 'once a month' smoker instead of sneaking it and hanging out with the wrong sort of people in order to get their hands on it.

Pot is dangerous. Caffeine in dangerous. Alcohol is much more dangerous than either. And to be honest, the sugar, and artificial sweeteners are much more horrifying that pot could ever, ever be. You think your brain not being able to produce serotonin is bad? You think lung cancer is bad? You think memory loss is bad? Research what refined sugar or aspartame will do to you.

Fuck the FDA & Monsanto & Assorted Other Power-Hungry Corrupt Murdering Corporations

Legalize the drug already. The sheeple will be sheeple regardless of pot being legal or not. Now let's talk about something that actually matters...

Disgusting Trends

"Exxon/Mobil reported the largest profit in the history of the corporate world last year; they make hundreds of billions of dollars. Few nations have the financial resources of these multinational corporations; the dollars to buy men, women and the power over lives without accountability for the death and ruin that they leave in their wake." ~Mark Karlin

That quote really hit me. Corporations are like their own monarchies. A dictatorship; each one standing alone as it's own country with more power than the countries that call themselves countries.

It's as I said when I recorded this ages ago:

"It's time for a non-violent revolution of civil disobedience against the corporations who run the sovereign governments of the world; it's time for the resources of the planet to return to the people of the planet; it's time for democracy to flourish free of the toxic influence of greed and money concentrated in the hands of so few who care so little about the future of life and the planet." ~Mark Karlin

Yes! Stop buying Monsanto products. Go Really Raw. Stop shopping at WalMart. Say NO to chemo-'therapy'! Research. Read labels. Recycle. Revolutionize.

Novel Writing; Evil Adverbs

I wish I could still attend my Writer's Group meetings; I miss them more and more.

I once read the book, "On Writing," by Steven King. One of the most potent things the book taught me is about how 'less is more.' Each sentence and word needs to say something. If you take three paragraphs to describe something and the image is vivid, then that's great. If you spend three paragraphs describing something and the image is foggy as San Fransisco in the morning, then your writing isn't going to attract any readers.

I've found that I actually enjoy reading condensed writing better than most elaborate writing. Why is that? Perhaps it's because it's simply easier to write something good that is condensed than it is to write something good that is detailed. This may seem counter-intuitive, especially to anyone out there who hasn't ever been able to write enough to express anything, but let's look at this from the perspective of the 'evil adverb.'

Every article or book about writing I've browsed through talks about 'evil adverbs' in one way or another.

What's an adverb, and what is evil about it?

An adverb modifies verbs, adjectives, and other adverbs. They can also be used to modify whole sentences and prepositional phrases. Clear as day, right?

Modify a verb:
o She walked quickly.
o They ate quietly.
Modify an adjective:
o She was incredibly beautiful.
o The tree is very old.
Modify another adverb:
o The dog ran very quickly down the street.
o Martha hugged her Grandma really tightly.
Modify a whole sentence:
o Obviously, he can’t have seen us.
Modify a prepositional phrase:
o They found the locket just under the bed.

Most adverbs are created by adding the -ly ending to an adjective.

Examples: slowly, painfully, quickly, crazily, strongly, etc.

However not all; well, never, fast, very, always, often, still, just.

Why do editors cringe when they see an adverb? Depending on the writing style (there are some exceptions - and you're not one of them) adverbs are red flags. They replace concrete descriptions or phrases with words that don’t hold real meaning.

Writing with adverbs:

The very pretty woman was terribly afraid that she wouldn't be able to escape. She slowly came to standing from her crouching position. Quietly as she could manage, she crept forward and around the bend. When she finally reached the cover of the trees, she broke into a very fast run.

Let's see if we can do better than that.

Using visuals instead of adverbs:

The beautiful young woman shook with fear as she contemplated her escape. She rose from her crouch one inch at a time, daring not to make a sound. She spent an entire minute removing each boot, and then crept forward and around the bend. On the tips of her toes she slipped through the camp, not reaching the cover of the trees until nearly night fall. Once covered with the shadows of the trees, she broke into a run.

Now it's your turn; take a piece of your writing you know needs work and try replacing every other adverb in the passage with concrete description instead.

Tuesday, June 01, 2010

Engagement & Wedding

June 24th 2010 at 2:24pm;

Lytenian and I got married this Monday (June 21st 2010) with a small ceremony. The reception is going to be a raw food potluck party this Sunday (June 27th 2010). Here are a couple pictures from our wedding day (quite some time after the ceremony when we were goofing around):

June 1st 2010 at 4:41pm I wrote;

Engagement Rings and/or Wedding Rings

I guess some people get engagement rings and then wedding rings, or perhaps they use the same ones for both? I'm not sure. There is even such thing as 'promise rings' as well. Whatever the case may be for other people, we've got rings, and we'll keep wearing them until we decide we want new ones, if/when we decide that we do. So I'm clueless as to whether that makes them engagement rings or wedding rings or what. Perhaps they are engagement rings as long as we're not married, and then if we don't get new ones they become wedding rings at that time? Yes, that's probably it.

Click To See Fullsize In Another Window

They were nothing expensive or fancy, but they're handcrafted, and because we selected them together they fit perfectly and we're both happy with them. We got them on Telegraph avenue in Berkley on a Saturday morning at one of the lovely stands that they set up every Saturday. I couldn't be more pleased with them.

Lytenian's ring is one of those that has a spinning layer of metal over the part of the ring that sits against his finger. He's always playing with it. It's adorable. After the Aharata workshop we attended in San Fransisco on Saturday the girlfriend of the organizer asked how long we had been married because she noticed us both playing with our rings! I was so charmed.