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Inspirations

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A LOVE-LY February Not Church

Love was in the air…Erin, as always offered some meaty considerations sprinkled with a good dose of self-effacing humor on the topic of blaming.  We had sharings on the importance of self-love, some helpful hints from Anna (see below), Carol and Jim’s readings of four short and poignant Mary Oliver poems,  Kevin’s metta meditation on extending loving thoughts to others and Steve’s deep talk on how our attitudes about our self and lack of compassion for ourselves manifests in our words and actions directed to others.   Ellen and John led us in a group sing of the Nat King Cole’s L.O.V.E. complete with flashcards and Ellen finished off our meeting with a powerful heartfelt rendition of La Vie en Rose. It was a beautiful day…Paul left us with a sweet taste of home-grown citrus (yum!) and Felix and crew at Poco Cielo served up a tasty brunch menu. It was a great one!

10 Simple Ways to Practice Self-Love Daily

From The Self-Love Experiment by Shannon Kaiser

1. Lighten up.
Emotionally, spiritually, mentally, even physically, ask yourself, “Where am I taking life too seriously and how can I lighten up more?”

2. Look at yourself the way your dog (or cat) does.
Ever notice how your furry friends seem to think you are the best thing on the planet? They see your greatness—it’s time for you to see yourself the same way. If you don’t have a pet at home, learn how to see yourself the way loved ones do.

3. Listen to your inner guide.
Your inner voice is your truth, and it’s always giving you guidance. Whether it’s to reach out to a friend you haven’t seen in years or change careers, the most loving thing you can do is to start to trust your inner guide, because it knows what will make you the happiest.

4. Replace judgment with curiosity.
When you feel as if you are judging yourself (or even another person), go inward and ask yourself, “What does this situation bring up for me? Why do I feel the need to attack emotionally?” When we judge, we remove ourselves from love. Return to love by turning to curiosity instead of fear-based thoughts.

5. Smile more.
Look at the things that are going well in your life instead of what isn’t working. Smile at the good and grasp it daily.

6. Share your story.
Being honest and open about your experiences will help you heal and grow. When you share your experiences with others, you connect on a deeper level, which gives you purpose. Plus, your personal story can help others.

7. Write a letter to your future self.
Sit down and visit future you, the one who is through the struggle, over the pain, and has it all figured out. She/he will offer you guidance and comfort.

8. Schedule “Me Matters” time.
Creating a “Me Matters” list—a feel-good list of the situations when you feel like your best self—and doing some things on that list daily will help you feel more balanced and alive.

9. […]

By |2020-01-31T16:39:11-08:00February 15th, 2018|Events, Inspirations, Uncategorized|Comments Off on A LOVE-LY February Not Church

Courage in February

“Grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change
Courage to change the things I can and
Wisdom to know the difference”

Steve Wayles - CourageThank you to all who participated…

The serenity prayer is well-known, but only in its abridged form.  You might be interested in the full, unedited version by Reinhold Niebuhr (1892-1971)

God, give us grace to accept with serenity
the things that cannot be changed,
Courage to change the things
which should be changed,
and the Wisdom to distinguish
the one from the other.

Living one day at a time,
Enjoying one moment at a time,
Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace,
Taking, as Jesus did,
This sinful world as it is,
Not as I would have it,
Trusting that You will make all things right,
If I surrender to Your will,
So that I may be reasonably happy in this life,
And supremely happy with You forever in the next.

Amen.

As Steve Wayles told us, Neibuhr was quite the courageous fellow.  If you’re interested in knowing more you can find details here

Choir-oke was spontaneous and fun…who knows??  We may see them again.  We’ll see what John has in store for us next month.

By |2020-01-31T16:32:19-08:00February 8th, 2017|Inspirations|Comments Off on Courage in February

Where the Music Comes From

Garden of Earthly Delights

Carol Clary presented and performed a moving song entitled “Where the Music Comes From” by Lee Hoiby

I want to be where the music comes from
Where the clock stops, where it’s now.
I want to be with the friends around me,
Who have found me, who show me how.
I want to sing to the early morning,
See the sunlight melt the snow; (Feel the Love inside me flow)
And oh, I want to grow.

I want to wake to the living spirit
Here inside me where it lies.
I want to listen till I can hear it,
Let it guide me, and realize
That I can go with the flow unending, that is blending, that is real;
And oh, I want to feel.

I want to walk in the earthly garden, far from cities, far from fear.
I want to talk to the growing garden, to the devas, to the deer,
And to be one with the river flowing,
Breezes blowing, sky above;
And oh, I want to love.

Hoiby dedicated this song to “The Guide” and has mentioned that the song came to him on the subway, I believe, in nearly one fell swoop. Please note that Carol changed a few words…the ones about the “morning sunlight” and the “snow.”

By |2020-01-31T16:37:56-08:00November 7th, 2016|Inspirations|Comments Off on Where the Music Comes From

Not- Church Expands Mindfulness Studies!

Mindfulness

Not Church is pleased to announce new (and continuing) opportunities
to explore Mindfulness, the energy that makes it possible for us to be aware of what is happening in the present moment.

Alicia Dominguez4-Day Workshop – Listening and Talking with your Heart with Alicia Dominguez
February 11 & 12 and February 18 & 19, 2016

Listening and Talking with your Heart is a powerful process for inspiring compassionate connection and action.  It provides a framework and set of skills allowing us to speak from the heart and talk openly about what is going on for us without judgment, without provoking defensiveness, resistance and counterattack.

In his book Aware Awake Alive, medical doctor and philosopher, Elliott Dacher says two of the components of integral health “…relate to our interaction with others—our interpersonal relationships and our relationship to the larger culture and planetary community.”  As Dr. Dacher points out, numerous recent studies have shown the effects of relationships, good and bad on our physiology and well-being.

Alicia Dominguez taught this course and other personal empowerment workshops to groups of 300-500 people for 13 years all over Mexico and South America.  We are fortunate she has agreed to run a small private intensive workshop here while visiting her sister, Carmen.

SPACE IS LIMITED to 10 people!  It will begin each day at 10am and end at 5pm with a ½ hour lunch break.  Cost is $80 US for the Workshop.

Contact Carmen Dominguez mcdomdur@gmail.com to reserve your space!

Matthieu RicardMindfulness Study Group – La Misión
February 16, 2016

After completing two sections on  Aware Awake Alive, by Dr. Elliott Dacher, we continue our study of mindfulness with an exploration of Mathieu Ricard’s, Happiness: A Guide to Developing Life’s Most Important Skill.

Matthieu Ricard  is Buddhist monk, French translator and right-hand man for the Dalai Lama, author of books, published photographer and was one of Dr. Elliott Dacher’s spiritual teachers.  He has been the subject of intensive clinical tests at the University of Wisconsin to prove the effects of meditation on the brain, as a result of which he is frequently described as “the happiest man in the world.”

Ricard  is the son of the late Jean-François Revel, a renowned French philosopher and the lyrical abstractionist painter and Tibetan Buddhist nun Yahne Le Toumelin.  He  grew up among the personalities and ideas of French intellectual circles.

Ricard  worked for a Ph.D. degree in molecular genetics at the Pasteur Institute under French Nobel Laureate François Jacob, but in 1972 decided to forsake his promising scientific career and concentrate on the practice of Tibetan Buddhism in the Himalayas where he has lived and practiced for over 40 years.

The study group will be held Tuesdays 2pm – 4pm starting February 16.  Contact Nadine de Jong – nadine.lockitch7@gmail.com for more information.

**We request you obtain the book and read at least the first chapter by the start of the first class. The book is available in Kindle, […]

By |2020-02-15T12:53:17-08:00February 4th, 2016|Happiness Study Group, Inspirations|Comments Off on Not- Church Expands Mindfulness Studies!

Spring

PelicansWe’ve had wonderful celebrations, sad losses and have events coming up.  We have some catching up to do.

Today we celebrated the life of our dear friend Leslie Harris who sadly lost her battle with cancer at the end of April.  We will miss her indomitable spirit, her wit, humor, her many contributions to the community and most of all the company of our good friend.

Ron’s meditation class continues 8:30 am on Mondays at Hacienda del Encanto.

dacher-aware-awake-aliveOur study group of Elliott Dacher’s Awake Aware Alive has six more Tuesdays at 2:00pm.  If you weren’t able to participate this time, we’re doing it again!   Even though we will start again from the beginning, with many having already read the book and participated in discussions, it is highly recommended that you read it beforehand.  The new group will start the second week of July so you have plenty of time to get the book if you’re interested in joining us. And…please email Nadine if you are interested in participating along with your preference for Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday afternoons.

We’re fully into Spring now—it’s practically Summer. Passover and Easter are distant memories, but here are a few photos to remind you what fun we had!

Don’t forget…Not Church May 10th.  Hope to see you.

By |2020-01-31T16:35:33-08:00May 7th, 2015|Inspirations|Comments Off on Spring

Please Don’t Cry

Erin Dunigan -  Photo by Marty Harriman Erin Dunigan – Photo by Marty Harriman

Who would think that the topic of “Loss” could be anything but a little sad? We should know by now that any topic in the care and thoughtfulness of Erin would be thought-provoking and inspiring, help us dig a little deeper into long-held beliefs, make us laugh, and of course include wonderful metaphors from her passion for permaculture and gardening.  Afterwards, many were heard saying, “It was the best ever.”

We missed Bernie, Kathy encouraging us to “be a little better,”  Ron leading us in meditation,  and Steve’s final comments, but it was another great topic and another stirring Sunday overlooking the beautiful Pacific at David Gee’s Hacienda del Encanto.

Erin found a way to lighten the topic without glossing it over, Ross’s music was spot-on, Doug’s poem touching and Carmen’s presentation from the beloved Macristy of Mexicali , “To My Friends,”  all came together to help us see that there is more to loss than grief and crying.

TO MY FRIENDS
IF YOU LOVE ME, PLEASE DON’T CRY……..

IF YOU ONLY KNEW THE UNFATHOMABLE MYSTERY OF THE HEAVEN WHERE I AM NOW.

IF YOU COULD ONLY SEE AND FEEL WHAT I FEEL IN THESE INFINITE HORIZON AND LIGHT THAT REACHES AND PENETRATES EVERYTHING.
I AM ABSORBED BY THE ENCHANTMENT OF GOD AND BY ITS INFINITE EXPRESSIONS OF BEAUTY.

IN THIS NEW LIFE, ALL PAST THINGS ARE SMALL AND INSIGNIFCANT.

BUT MY AFECTION FOR ALL OF YOU IS STILL INTACT AS WELL AS THE TENDERNESS THAT WAS HARD TO REVEAL WHEN I WAS WITH YOU.

EVERYTHING THAT I LIVED WHILE ON EARTH WAS FLEETING AND LIMITED.
NOW I LIVE IN THE SERENE EXPECTATION TO SEE YOU ALL HERE, SOME DAY.

THINK OF MY NEW ABODE WHERE DEATH DOESN’T EXIST AND WHERE I AM WITH THE UNENDING FOUNTAIN OF JOY AND LOVE.

IF YOU REALLY LOVE ME, PLEASE DON’T CRY FOR ME.

I AM IN PEACE,

MACRISTY

Not Church Oct 12, 2014 Photo by Marty Harriman Not Church Oct 12, 2014
Photo by Marty Harriman

 

By |2014-10-14T09:20:21-07:00October 14th, 2014|Inspirations|Comments Off on Please Don’t Cry

Compassion

Compassion Il-GuercinoSeptember 8, 2013

Erin said it best…What a ‘blessing’ to share our time together as we explored ‘compassion.’   “Wow.”  It was another really great, inspiring Not Church.

Erin’s sermon was fantastic.  She’s recreated it here in case you missed it.

And here is a link to the Inspirations page where you will find excerpts from Kathy, Ron, Teena, Molly & Arthur.  Unfortunately, we haven’t yet arranged to record our gatherings, so we don’t have a sampling of Ross’s awesome selections. But keep checking back…

The next Not Church gathering will be Sunday, October 13th.

 

By |2020-01-31T16:11:05-08:00September 11th, 2013|Inspirations|Comments Off on Compassion