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Sunday, December 21, 2008

Optimistically pessimistic

Giving Thanks...

Today I give thanks for my sinus infection.
Just don't look at my sickly reflection.
At least I am breathing.

Today I give thanks for my screaming babies.
Sick of the Yes, No, and Maybe's.
At least they are Healthy.

Today I give thanks for my Van window being stuck.
It can only be closed by that tape with the Duck.
At least I have a Van.

Today I give thanks for dog poo on the floor.
No need to worry, I'm sure there is more.
At least my dog is healthy.

Today I give thanks for a wet floor.
Water was seeping from under the bathroom door.
At least I have running water.

Today I give thanks for not being able to taste.
Eating like this seems so much a waste.
At least I have food.

Today I give thanks for the chills and aches
I know my children wont give me any breaks.
At least I have heat.

This isn't coming out as it sounded in my head
I guess it's time to go back to bed.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

My son was confronted by a classmate about his religious beliefs at school. My son said he wasn't quite sure why the boy brought up the subject of religion, as they were not talking to each other prior to the question, however the class was discussing the History of the Romans, and how religion played a roll in their lives. The boy bluntly asks my DS if he is a Christian. My DS says "No, I am not." The boy then asks "Do you believe in God?" To which my Son replies "I don't know. I have a hard time believeing in one God without evidence." "I tend to take a more scientific approach to life."The boy then tells my DS he will go to hell for not believeing in God. The conversation ended at that.

This has happened to my children on a few occasions at school. Someone challenges their beliefs and they get some fearful threats of burning in the firey pits of hell.My son asks me today to explain to him a bit more about Hell. I explained to him that many religions believe that Hell is a place where sinners go to suffer and that this is their punishment in the afterlife. Some religions think of the existance of Hell as forever, while others think of it as a place to pay your dues inbetween incarnation.I have told my children that they are Free to believe whatever they believe in. They know that they are free to feel differently than I do about any aspect of life. I want them to be able to make these choices on their own and when they are ready. I expect them to respect others of varying religions, cultures, etc. even if they completely disagree with their beliefs. I could never imagine a Secular child approaching someone, asking if the are a Christian, and then proceeding to say "Ha ha, you believe in a God that doesn't exist." or "Ha ha, you believe in Hell and there is no such place."

My children have been told that if someone chooses to challenge your beliefs that the only acceptable way to respond is with factual information, and with good intentions. I told DS next time he could reply with a simple "Well, I guess it's a good thing I don't believe in Hell." and walk away. Or he could say "I'm not disrespectful to you for being a Christian, so please respect my choice to not be a Christian."We don't question a person for believing in something that we do not believe in. My daughter has said many times that she feels sorry for one of her Christian friends because she isn't free to have her own thoughts, and that when she does decide something for herself that the childs Mother then has a conversation with her about it and she changes her mind. This is very frustrating to my DD because she has a hard time understanding why all children aren raised as Free Thinkers. I have tried to explain to her that this is every parents choice, and that she will find many who make a different choice in their parenting than I do. I have told her that it is not her place to pity her friend. I told her she might be suprised at how her friends beliefs develop as she gets older.

Anyway, I guess I am just wondering...do Christians raise their Children with the belief that it is okay to tell other kids that they are going to hell if they don't believe in God? What occurs to make a child think it is okay to tell someone that they will be sent to hell? What would your reaction be if a Non-Christian child approaced your Christian child and told them "God isn't real." or "Hell doesn't exist."? I'm having a hard time understanding how a Christian can think it is appropriate to attack a persons beliefes life this. I just couldn't imagine a Secular person, a Humanist, etc. just approaching someone and challenging their religious beliefs like this.

We ended up having one of those great conversations that left me feeling full. Full of accomplishment. Full of success. Full of appreciation. I really enjoy these thought provoking conversations with my children. I also enjoy where they lead to. This conversation about Christianity took us to conversations about other Countries, other Religions, Cultures, and even about Santa Clause.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Be awake and aware of each moment as it unfolds...

I am compelled by some deep hunger of the soul, driven by a desire that will not leave me alone, to live life to the fullest. I know this does not mean working endlessly, accomplishing the most, or consuming the greatest amount and variety of things and experiences. It means tasting each mouthful, feeling each breath, listening to each song, being awake and aware of each moment as it unfolds.

The Invitation, Oriah Mountain Dreamer

I want to live my life intimately with the world! The above writing is from my most fave book. It speaks to me daily, and I refrence it often. Oriah has taught me that living in the moments can truly enrich your life.

There are those moments that I am still unsure of what to do with. When I overheard that a supposed good friend of mine was telling lies about me and speaking about me in a negative manner, without the confidence to tell me to my face that which she had no problem lying to others about I found myself stuck. I've been stuck in this place ever since.

What do you do with that? This is a moment that I am not sure how to live in. When you are a dedicated friend and support system to someone and they stab you in the back with your own knife, what can you do with that?

Today I found my answer. I already lived in that moment. I already grieved the loss of that friendship. I sat with that pain, and I allowed myself to feel naked in front of the world. It's time to move on.

I will no loger allow this person to have a hold on me. I forgive her and understand that she must be suffering some internal struggle of her own. Perhaps she reflected the attention from her to me with the greatest intention. Perhaps looking at how I am living my life, and trying to live my life caused her great reflection on her own life, and she didn't like what she was forced to see.

I resolve to move on. To know that her problems are no longer my problems. To know that I can take the energy and effort I put into our friendship and give it to someone worthy.

Today is a great day. A weight has been lifted from my shoulders, and I am once again greatful to have The Invitation to reflect upon.