The Tragedy of These Tears (remarks on Parkland School shooting)

I feel I ought to weigh in on the Parkland assassinations. The 17 souls who lost their lives to this senseless massacre ought not to have. We all agree. These young people went to school expecting the day to be regular and normal only to be assaulted by a fellow student with unrecognized madness. He was an unbalanced ,angry and troubled youth seeking some illogical satisfaction in randomly shooting his school mates with whom he had no bond. He shot and killed” in wicked scattershot ”the sons and daughters of hardworking parents, the sisters and brothers of fond siblings, the classmates and friends that passed by in the familiar halls, day after day following the aspiring routines of high school.
 
Imagine the discord, the havoc, the terror, the sudden agony of Death stalking these teenage lives, To know that one is about to be killed, to know that one is about you be deprived of life and its promise before you have barely dreamed it. Even the adults who died in this unkind, unprecipitated slaughter lost their dreams, their families, their livelihood (no pun here). It hurts me. It hurts me.
 
I tuned into the “listening session” on CNN with the President last night. It was good, therapuetic, a release, and it was motivating. Aside from the appeals for action and the demand for solutions, those student surviviors in all of their pain, those parents and school authorities from other scenes of massacre, ie. Sandy Hook, Parkland and other notorious scenes of unexpected gunslaughter, were brave and strong in the face of their grief. They spoke through the tragedy of their tears to propose fresh ideas and share their pain with the President, who,for once, seemed to be humbled and silenced by the magnitude of their intention. He asked for open dialogue, for suggestions, for insight.
 
So I came away with one or two of my own: as we put labels on cigaret packs and bottles of medicine, as we give warning to parents for R rated movies, and post Beware signs for guard dogs, so must we now attack the prevalence of films and television shows, and violent video games that feature the romanticized and vicious use of guns for good or ill. This will be one finger of a handfull of incentives to reduce gun violence. Others suggest gun training for school officials, still others suggest new laws, others want to retrofit schools for any likelyhood of danger, and others want to recall guns, extend the background check or age at which one can buy any gun. All good. I join the youth in saying, “Never Again”. May the grace of God heal your broken hearts and dry your tears. This tragedy must be the last of its kind.
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2. The Black Woman Who

A Black woman, out and about, with errands to run in Copenhagen, Denmark, shivered a bit under her short-length warm coat. It was black, yet decorated like a chalk board with unusual colored-stripes, traveling loops, and spirals, suggesting the first letter of her name. This assertion of Self was antithesis to the repeating black motif  of the  bundled passersby in their long, cloth and leather coats, some ribbed, a few jackets.  All seemed impervious to the teasing cold breeze and waspish rain. Occasionally, genderless people–in close-fitting , fiber-stuffed coats, wearing both blue jeans and ankle high black boots, with matching black gloves– punctured the lines of the passing mass,  their heads encircled by  hoodies of wirery animal hair. The cold rain of  January slid beneath their clothing as it did the winter wear of the Black woman who also wore a brightly colored knit cap and torkelader. The droplets stung like alcohol on an open scratch.

The Black woman peeked out from beneath her throat and nose wrap, eyes seeking a common connection between herself and any other of these many people, who like her, were feeling the rain, suffering the elements for cause on a winter’s day. No eyes met hers, no empathy between the passing walkers. Each to her or his own business. Each to the private self,  to winter’s dark hedgemony.

Yet, a wayward sight comforts her, makes her smile, keeps her company as she hurries on, past two weathered dames –both privileged, among elders and youth, among the driven motley stream.  As if on runway–wearing old seasons of full length saga mink which has been treated against water–, they walk self-contained beneath umbrellas sustained by an insistent way of life.

The Blackwoman Who: Stories of race and culture in Denmark

I.

A Black woman was passing in the Danish crowd at the Christmas season. The windows of the shops were already in the spirit with huge red hearts and candle-white bulbs strung like popcorn above and across with the tradition. Folks bustled by in knit caps and furry tams, in blue jeans and fashionable leather slacks. Boots and gym trainers, layered jackets and bundled fur hoods caressing their, by and large, windswept, cherry-red faces. A Blackman–as far as the Blackwoman was concerned–crossed her path awkwardly. She saw that he was losing his balance because one of his shoe strings was loose. He was having neither success at bending nor grasping them. And the asphalt beneath his splayed legs did not help his balance because a slippery frost coated the soles of his brown workman’s boots.

The Blackwoman watched him from only a body’s distance away. She saw now that in addition to badly managing a wide-legged straddle, nearly tripping while sliding into  about on the icy ground, he was drunk. The Black woman took a step back, looked at him compassionately. She knew this reality, God rest her father’s soul.  Perhaps this evoked her compassion; it could have been amusement. It may be it was pity. Taking a step back…could have been caution. That is the confusion with being a Blackwoman who sees, trying to name what is seen in truth. Well, a touchable truth that can be shared– as  a now.

The Blackwoman, suddenly possessed, felt strong and sure. Where such possession comes from, she has never been able to say. She is after all,only a Black woman, with eyes to see . She watches. This is the watch report. She watches from her own watchtower. She stands guard when she isn’t standing guard. “Brother,” she said, “let me help you.” “Sister,” he said, his right leg sliding away, close to graceless split. “I can do it.”  And again he made a hapless, ineffectual lunge for the loose strings of the shoe on his left foot. He floundered.

The Blackwoman took charge. “Brtother, come over here. Here. Let me help you. ” She intended to direct the traffic of his floundering. She took his left hand and arm, quite without permission. “Here now, put your hand against this wall to balance. There you go. There.”

She got him propped up against the building with just a little tug of his wool coat sleeve. This stopped him from those fruitless attempts to bend down to tie his shoe without falling over. Then she knelt, found the wayward shoe strings that were preventing his own success. One end of the lace had escaped the little eye which otherwise would equalize the string length. She threaded the shoelace. She crossed and double-bow tied it.

“There.” she said again. “Sister, you did that for me!” said he. (His accent making him African). “Yes,I did.” said she. “But why?” said he. “Because you deserved it.” He looked dumbstruck. He reached for her, to give a hug of gratitude. She allowed it, hoping not to be trapped by their strangers’ embrace. She trusted. After all, she initiated the intervention. Then, without struggle or awkwardness, without looking into each other’s eyes, they let go. She went on her way, not looking back, a Blackwoman (leaving a Blackman to his path) both melting like first snowflakes in the Norreport crowd during the Christmas season in Copenhagen.

The Peace Garden in the Hood Shariananda’s Meditation on a Life Journey

S garden headshot.JPG The road back through time and memory is fraught with the demons of the past and the wonders of rebirth in the present. This summer just past, I left my five-year–new home in Copenhagen,Denmark to revisit my natal home in Illinois, including parts where dwell my family, and friends-who-are-like-family. This was July 1, 2017.

No matter how many times I have returned to Chicago,in my mind’s eye, and in reality,  it is always the city by the lake where the iconic skyline stands silhouetted against a distant sky, pregnant with moody clouds; it stands against harsh Northern winds off Lake Michigan. The summers are deceptive, ever so hot, ever so busy, with traffic streaming along the lake front;  while other vehicles grunt along the packed, serpentine expressways. Day or night time, the city is lighted by it’s own reputation, by the gossip of midnight-good-times, and the sound and gabble of the all–too–frequent gun horrors. From this memory and opinion, I had long ago escaped. Though my brothers, who made their lives there, at a point, could have easily become a Laquan McDonald, a Treyvon Martin, or a Michael Brown. God be praised, not all the sons of the women in my family have been as fortunate: two of my once young male relatives live off and on behind bars; another one, older than I, is now deceased, having lived the hip life of a player too fast,too long.

I was born in the winter in this city upon the Illini plains, and the Hawk blew me away to the South in the 60`s.  Once I had returned from the red clay and uncivil wars of  Alabama, (l970), I taught and lived in the Windy City for three years. Living within me was the pressed ugly memories of  the death of Emmett Til, and the horrid brutalities of errant law enforcement; chilling me was the reports of drug crimes deaths in alleyways; and the reports of miscreant political dealings in high and low places, all of which established the furtive lowering of blinds, the redundant front door and back door blockades with wrought iron;  each resident of those times became a resigned witness living in suspicious neighborhoods, domiciled in anxious, unsafe households. This is my picture, this is the attitude. Or shall I say was.

I found after my arrival, that the front porch in the neighborhood on the Southside where my 100- year -old aunt still lives, dares to be a rampart for fresh air, where she and my cousins, other neighbors share an unguarded hoot and holler with neighbors who have lived “on the block”,”in the hood” for more than 40 years. The streets have the familiar curbside litter, but not the degradation of  a destitute ghetto, No, contrary to the broad national reports in the news, in the newspapers, about gun violence and the terror in the streets, in this Chicago neighborhood, residents, carry on as if there is not a worry in the world. They maintain routines of waking, eating, cleaning, talking, tv watching ,ignoring the worry of an addict behind the boarded up windows. They blot out the would-be drug dealer or a gun totting loser waiting to pounce, burgularize, murder or batter. No, not even  the careless parking of cars on unimproved city-owned lots seems to be an affront to their casual acceptance and promotion of life as it ought be, life as life goes on. Bills are paid, children are born, barbers cut hair, block parties blare, and the grey stone houses stand.

 It is a sunny day in July, the 4th of July to be exact. The City of Chicago is partying non-stop in every neighborhood and downtown in the Loop. Flags fly Bar-b-que fragrances the air; folks stroll in miscellaneous outfits of red, of white, of blue, with wreckless stars  and strips on caps and shoes to described their independence. I get brave. I take a walk. It is up the block and, lo!

I discover, a little set-aside cove. It is quiet, slightly surrounded by modest bushes, and with a stone slab pathway–a labyrinth–placed in an S-shape on the ground. There are wooden benches in the manner of the Japanese . There are lotus plants. I am amazed. On the wall of the building, which belongs to St. Stephens Church, reads the word: PEACE. I look around. There is a man seated in a comfortable lean,thinking, maybe, waiting. But there,out in the open. He is not under assault. He is free to sit, to meditate.

The church itself sits across the empty street which welcomes little traffic, so today there are no hot rods zooming, across the speed bumps.  Next to the church, is an empty lot of children. They’re playing kickball; Several t-shirted men laugh and jive, and mothers watch a few girls jump rope. It is astonishing to me. It is so normal and wholesome, and I wonder at my prejudice. I am of a mind to sit in the garden, to trust the Spirit that has allowed a new vision for this neighborhood, for myself. I have found a living possibility. It is there for whomever seeks.

I walk the labyrinth, it is short, but not without meaning in slow motion.  I sit, and trust to close my eyes. On another day, an SUV will roll through with the speaker blaring rap music and it will disrupt the peace, but not today. Today “the Hood” is in nearly an imperceptable motion toward. It is a future born in the present. This little copse of stone and flora offers a different pathway of  being; today the Peace Garden testifies to hope. I have come back as a witness.

 

Peace Wall.JPG
Labyrinth.JPGPeace Garden2.JPGMeditator2.JPG   

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The Right Wing–Winners and Losers: The Second Republican Presidential Debate,Part 2

The Right Wing–Winners and Losers: The Second Republican Debate  Part 2

As I said, I gave each candidate 1 point for making a point, for answering the question well.  And among the values previously listed, I also subjectively decided which was more Presidential, credible, and assertive overall.  If you missed the beginning of this discussion please check the blog/post that preceded this one: The Right Wing, Part I

So who won and why from my spiritual point of view? Well, there were close competitors and there were poor scorers. Below I list the best debaters in alpha order as I have no favorite because I am no Republican even though I appreciated the Presidential quality, informed preparation, passion, and fair-mined courage of  Marco Rubio.

Jeb Bush 10

Ben Carson   2

Chris Cristy 11

Ted Cruz 3

Carly Fiorina 9

Mike Huckabee 4

John Kasich 3

Paul Rand 8

Marco Rubio 10

Donald Trump 3

Scott Walker 2

Chris Cristy (11)  bashed Hillary Clinton and President Obama, but talked an unifying theme. That seemed hypocritical and though he had the most points, his energy was vituperative.He spoke best on the need for rehab for marijuana users not jail.

Jeb Bush (10) was very dignified,brought a mollifying energy and I appreciated that he is politically seasoned. He is fighting the perception that he will not be seen as “his own man” because both his brother and father already held the office., but he countered that his brother kept us safe after 9-11. He was composed

Marco Rubio (10) was present to the moment, had his facts and was informed. He was prepared studied, and astute. He spoke on immigration and the Iranian deal calling Putin “that gangster in Moscow” for his interference in the Ukraine. His tone was bitter in regards to Obama’s seeming rebuff of Netanyahu and his warmth and welcome to the Iranian spiritual leader by contrast.

Carly Fiorina (9) was prepared,intense, and assertive. She advocated upgrading and restoring the US military. She focused on policy, advocated for us standing with our allies. She brought a personal revelation on the drug rehab issue. It balanced the sharpness of her edge in trying to slice through the combative male energy.

Paul Rand (8) had considered ideas, the confidence of his political experience, and a passionate, well-thought out response to most question. He was attentive and unflappable. He was a leader by example spoke on the Tenth Amendment, and also advocated for less incarceration of drug users.

Mike Huckabee (4) was exemplary and grounded by his sense of right. He spoke against same sex marriage even though the law validates it now. He was passionate and unabashed. His stand was moral and he embodied the electorate who think like him without venom.

John Kaisch (3)–He seems easy, honest, authentic with his talk of unifying and his record in Ohio as governor. He said more than once America’s strength lies in in unity, abroad as well with our allies. His carriage or body language was easy and stood out from the rest,but his assertions were simplistic by contrast.

Donald Trump (3)–He was out of his depth in this debate, holding back on the usual argumentative hyperbole and name calling.  He seemed to have pulled back and was less sophomoric about name calling, taking back his insult to Fiorina about her looks. He advocated for English as the national American language and spoke again for his intention to raise a wall against Mexican illegal immigration. When asked which woman he’d put on the new US ten dollar bill, he said his  wife. He repeated, he wants “to make the country great again”.

Ted Cruz (3) With every chance to speak, he bashed Obama, and argued against planned parenthood and abortion, advocated for war, and strict constitutional. He said he’d tear up the Iran deal on his first day in office. He’d repeal Obama health care program.  He’d abolish IRS. He did a great deal of fear monger. He was ineffective.

Ben Carson(2)–His views come in from left field, in a sleepy, cracker barrel style. His persona is sweet, and understated. He has strong views on the Syrian war now, saying if we (Obama) had gone into Syria after Afghanistan was, the current displacement of Syrians (refugee) crisis wouldn’t be happening. He is a quiet controversial candidate, saying he’d not want a Muslim in the White House.

Scott Walker(2) He spent the debate selling himself, and the Reagan legacy as it lives in him. Of all, he bashed the president each time he had a chance to speak.He had no authority of his own.,even though he had his Wisconsin governorship to recommend his ability to take a hard line. It was not evident this time. *[Since September 16, he has dropped out of the race.]

What I Advise

Psychic source – Where do you get your answers from?…

Question:

Shariananda, When you do psychic readings, where do you get the answers from? Do all psychics get their answers from the same source? I’ve heard psychics on television say they get it from their spirit guides. I heard Dr. Phil, a talk show hosts, say that women have the ability to just know things. Where does the knowing come from? Thanks

​Gina

Answer:

Dear Gina

​I am so glad you asked me that! That is one of the best questions I have ever been asked on this site.

When I started as a “psychic” it came upon me like a bolt of lightning. I was doing a performance pretending to give answers to a warm up audience who came to see my one-woman show. One of my characters in that show was a “fake’ psychic who was giving stupid and obvious advice like “you’re going to get a letter.” “You will get a new pair of shoes.” “Your food will taste good.” (This was generated from my brain and sense of humor.) But then, without knowing how or why, I started to say things I had not thought of nor was I aware that I knew them. I told one lady that she was pregnant and afraid because she didn’t have a husband. And she was shocked! It was true and she said no one knew that but her. You think she was shocked, I was too! I got so scared. I didn’t know what had happened to me. But there I was on stage giving instant readings into people’s lives without a clue as to how I knew these things.

Because I am a Christian, I was afraid this was a demon possession, but as I got used to things and prayed and went to several other psychics and people in the field to ask. I began to read and I trusted that if I had been given this gift of knowing it was for the best.

Since then, I have gathered new beliefs in angels and the idea that my deceased relatives speak to me.

I know I have someone with me all the time (guardian angels) because in 2006 I was struck by lightning and a voice spoke to me to lie still, and that prevented me from having a heart attack. So who are my guides? I do not know them all, but i accept that they are of the Good. I like thinking they are angels and my relatives and my unseen guardian, but some comes in dreams some in daydreams and during meditation. So, I am open to receive and trust, as I said, that it all comes from the good. God is Spirit. That which comes from him comes in spirit and truth. So, my answer to you is that my answers come from God, from his tools and means. I am protected and I do not fool around . I an honest and if I do not know, I do not say I do. Hope this helps.

Deeper and Deeper–Undercover Consciousness

Deeper and Deeper–Undercover Consciousness

It has been nearly two weeks since I last wrote you a note about my progress in the Winning the Game of Money program. Our instructions are to review the entire program for 21 days, after we finish the first 90 days. In the interim between the first week and the second, I was involved in a car accident and it set me back a ways. I tried listening to the the tapes, but my body and mind revolted. I felt like I was trying to bend steel with my hands or push down a huge iron door. So, I stopped pushing. I just decided to keep my usual transcendental practice of meditation going, but even that was too heavy for my head and inner reflections. I stopped listening.

In this period of healing, I had a great many childhood and young adult remembrances. They called to mind times when I was psychologically or emotionally injured, places where I felt I was wounded and not nurtured. It occurred to me that many of you working through the program, especially trying to access your blocks or remove unwanted habits and beliefs about money, may be unprepared for the removal of toxic thoughts and absorbed behaviors that have poisoned your inner emotional waters. You may even be unconscious about just how deeply you have been affected or how those days and times have influenced the way you look at life, how you forgive or do not, how you love or cannot, how you act and do not.

It is important to know you are detoxifying with this program, whether you intend to or not. And it won’t be everyone’s experience to know what is happening to herself or himself, nor will you be always to be able to ask the neighborly online participant if they have felt or feel what you are experiencing and get a clear, confirming, or comforting answer. It is really quite unique to each of us. So you will need to take care of yourself. If you have had no transformational work or do no meditations or no yoga nor even see a therapist of other professional,then, you ought think twice about jumping in, raising cane, and dealing with what may yet be hidden from you. The program takes no responsibility for your experience except to stay you can earn all the money you want and you can create a millionaire’s mindset. Otherwise, if you have deep unresolved issues linked directly to your finances or not, it is not in the purview of this program to address them.

When the audio repeats that you are going “deeper and deeper.” Know that’s true, and it will out in one way or the other. Stay alert to your own thought and take care of the undercover things that are only yours to know and acknowledge. In the spirit of healing and love and sharing–Sharimeditation within

Proof in the Pudding–Review of Level 4– Increasing Wealth Feelings

Proof in the Pudding–Review of Level 4– Increasing Wealth Feelingsbanana pudding pudding saying

I last reported to you that while clipping words and images from newspapers and magazines for my vision board that I had found an advertisement for an English instructor listed by a well-established language school, called The Cambridge Institute. Today I went for interview. It was easy, welcoming, fair, and direct. I got the job–this is my money making frequency drawing known and unknown sources of money to me.

What makes it fit in with the outcomes of this brain-retraining is that it is within the scope of my vision plan. I have the choice of when and for how long I shall work, and beyond the set pay scale, I can determine how much I shall earn. While this is not the entire scope of my vision, it is a part, a new beginning toward earning as much money as I desire. I see this as a stepping stone to higher income and greater out-reach. So I am delighted, especially since I love to teach, I am a gifted and creative teacher, and I have wanted to teach here in Denmark since I came. It is an honor to use my credentials in another country.

Meanwhile, I will use the money I earn to forward other aspects of my vision and goals. The brain retraining program says nothing about old fashion axioms like “the proof is in the pudding” but there are plenty of beliefs and habit- money axioms that inhabit our deep conscious:such as “it takes money to make money”–or “money talks”–and “money don’t grow on trees”. But it’s been through searching my inner thoughts for these drawbacks to prosperity that has brought me to this plateau. Pudding, did I say? Sweet.

what’s for you, you will get, Review of Level 9–Accelerating Wealth

“What’s for You, You will Get”, Review of Level 9–Accelerating Wealth

I have two brothers. I am close to both of them and for all of our years apart, pursuing our dreams and lives, we remained bonded by the blood of our parents and the memories of their import in our lives. I am the middle child, a female, I am book-ended by each of them, one older, the other younger, but all of us within a workable age range: 75, 69, 65. It’s comforting to have them be alive. I think of them and our parents because the car accident this past week-end threw me backwards into my mind during my continued review of the levels of our brain retraining program. As I listen, I remember odd snippets of life as a youth, as student, a young adult, and as a teacher.

In sharing my recent challenge with my youngest brother, Weddie, who is a very kindred spirit, he quoted something my mom used to say,”One step forward, and two steps back.” That was surprising as I had never heard her say that and I said so. Then my brother said, it was just something he adopted as a catch phrase, something attributed to my mom only. I guess this was a strategy to bridge the loss–he was only 11 when she died. But to me it seems to be the kind of belief to dissolve in the Beliefs and Habits Generator.

Upon learning that it was just a faux axiom for general use in his life, I asked him if he wanted to know some of the axioms that I recall which my Mom did, in fact, used to say. He said, yes.
One of them was “What’s for you you will get.”

And in fact, that has proven to be so. What has been mine to have from jobs to possessions, from lovers to points of travel, I have realized by miscellaneous means. For example, when I was making my Vision Board, that included a desire to instruct with images of classrooms of students, I had run across a job notice for a English language school seeking teachers. I cut it out, and put it aside. After my board was done, I called the school. Lo, they were receptive and encouraging, and today they invited me for an interview. It is an opportunity born of my work with this program, and an answer to a prayer for more money while being an exact reflection of one goal imaged on my vision board.

I ought to be calm and well enough to go for the interview next week. But I guess I ought remember not”to count my chickens before they hatch”
and “to cross that bridge when we get to it.” Her sayings have carried me a long way,and I know she’d be happy that I was trying to “keep some money in your[my] pocket to keep the haunts* off of you.”

*(broke demons,pronounced ‘haints’)IMG_0461 11954607_10207775727537401_7043628276373928011_n 11914956_10207775769978462_3629305132889882734_n

Levels of Review, Review of Levels 5-6-7-8–Parallelism

Levels of Review, Review of Levels 5-6-7-8-Parallelism

You may have missed me for the last few days. I have been quietly healing. On last Saturday Vivi and I were involved in a car accident. We hit another vehicle from behind as we exited the freeway. The car in front appeared to be about to move on from a slow down,and then it didn’t. Wham! So, we got snatched pretty fiercely by the seat belts, and we were traumatized by the loud bang of the smash, but nothing deeply serious. No air bag deployment or screeching tires.The other vehicle’s passengers were shaken up but not hurt (but pretty pissed!)

We were on our way to Bon Holm, a little island land of Denmark. We had planned a 4 day get away. Stopped cold. Between Denmark and Sweden.
The ambulance came, the cops came, two Samaritan drivers came (one with license plate TLC),after talking to the insurance company on the cell phone, the wrecker came. We rattled but in one piece,deliberated a return trip strategy.

It was,after all the tension and upset, an adventure. The wrecker driver dropped us off at the Swedish train station where we figured out the train schedule, and while we waited we had ice cream–such a comfort in times of stress. Oddly, people kept asking us for directions and making small talk with us. It seemed to be a day to help others. Then we took the hour and a half ride back to Copenhagen, relaxed, silent, and blessed to be alive. The view outside the window was blissful, collectively lovely. A man on the train voluntarily put my bag in the rack above–such a kindess. I was unable.

In this recovery week since, we have been very,very quiet. We were both so traumatized by the loud bang of the crash that every little noise set us on nerve. The entire experience gave us cause for review. Viv has reviewed the past traumas in her life:death and loss, and I reviewed mine: many that were in fact auto accidents. It is coincidental that I am reviewing the wealth audio, completing my first 7 days of the 21, and I see the parallels. Sometimes you have to go back to go forward or stop and review to see where you have been. Yet and still all things work together for good (to those who love the Lord). We are glad to be alive.

Two damage cars after accident
Two damage cars after accident

ice creaming licking 2