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Monday, January 25, 2016

#PeaceMatters and The World

How do you, a single person, impact the violence in the world?

The answer is the same as last week but at a different level.

First: Live a life of peace.

Second: Talk about peace. You can have conversations with friends, family, neighbors, etc. Write letters to the editor. Mount a campaign on Social Media.

I listened to a news analyst quote a statistic the other day that said people who are active on social media tend to be more angry than people who are less active or not active at all. If you are on social media – make sure there is a message of the benefits of peace in your words. Another way to phrase this is that those people who are angriest are also active on social media.

Third: Support others who promote peace. You may want to like or retweet their post. Comment on their blog. Vote for them in an election.

Fourth: Put yourself out there! Write that blog or other social media venue post.  Be a model in your family, neighborhood and community. Run for election.

Fifth: Don't give in to fear! Those who are instigators of violence often do so because they want us to be fearful. To give them power over us because we are afraid. There are very few, if any, situations that cannot be resolved if all parties want a peaceful solution.

If everyone who says they want peace (and that is the majority of people in the world if one is to believe the polls) takes responsibility for our own peaceful lives, the world must become a more peaceful place.

I grant you, it isn’t easy. Recently a militia took over a wildlife refuge in my home state of Oregon. It was disconcerting to see them with guns strapped everywhere and talking in what to me were hostile tones and words. Initially I thought how dare they! They aren’t even Oregonians! And what about my rights? Don’t I have the right to feel safe?

It wasn’t easy and it took several hours but eventually I was able to send positive thoughts that the siege would end peacefully and that the protesters would seek legal ways to promote their position. I internally acknowledged that sometimes it is difficult to withdraw when we know our position is not in the majority and we’ll never “win”.

But that’s part of living in a democracy! If you see the movie “An American President” with Michael Douglas and Annette Benning airing, watch it. Watch to the end when Michael as President Andrew Shepard makes a speech before the White House press corp. 

I won’t quote verbatim although I’ve seen the movie so often I could! He talks about how America is Advanced Citizenship and notes that Democracy isn’t easy. I do believe that speech, while written in the 1990’s, is pertinent to the world we live in today.

Living a peaceful life because #PeaceMatters isn’t easy but now more than at any point in my life time, it is important.

Please share your thoughts, comments and perspective. I truly do want to know.

Judith Ashley is the author of The Sacred Women’s Circle series, contemporary romantic fiction that honors spiritual practices that nurture the soul. 

Judith also posts the first Monday of the month at Romancing The Genres.

You can follow Judith on Twitter: JudithAshley19

Check out Judith’s website and her Windtree Press author page.


Judith also is on Facebook. Here’s the link

Monday, January 18, 2016

#PeaceMatters and YOU

#Peace Matters and YOU

How do you, a single individual, impact the violence in the world?

I won’t tell you it’s easy, but it is simple.

Live a life of peace.

That means giving up revenge for a wrong no matter how grievous. (It does not mean you do not call the police, press charges, or testify in court).

That means staying peaceful in mind and spirit when someone cuts in front of you while driving or scares you half-to-death because of some antic while on the road. No cussing, shaking of fist in the air much less “doing it back”. (You can call 911 if you can give a description of the car and driver.)

I’ve been working on this one this past year. My success is not quite 100% but close. I have my driving conscience in the form of this snowy owl that hangs from my passenger side visor. And I choose to say a quiet prayer for the safety of that driver. Why? Because if that driver is safe, the others of us on the road are more likely to be safe also. And because I do believe that all behavior is purposeful. There is something happening in that driver’s life such that how he or she is driving makes sense.

It also means finding ways past disagreements that are not resolvable (it does take two people to find common ground and put the disagreement in the past).

I’ve stewed for years over my neighbor’s unwillingness to take care of her hedge. When I made a commitment to live a life of peace, including peaceful thoughts, I knew I had to do something about the hedge which had grown over one-half of my carport roof. It cost me over $300 to have my neighbor’s laurel hedge cut back from my property but I no longer stew over the *!X)# hedge.

Stress is the underlying cause of many of our health problems so it makes sense to figure out how to reduce and eliminate as much as we can.

Here are some questions I ask myself:

What do I control?

What can I do about what I control?

How do I let go of what I cannot control?

I’m not saying it is easy to find our answers. But the process is simple. Take care of what we do have control over and let go of what we cannot and do not control are the keys to living a peaceful life.

What do you do to minimize stress in your life so you live a more peaceful life?


Judith Ashley is the author of The Sacred Women’s Circle series, contemporary romantic fiction that honors spiritual practices that nurture the soul. 

Judith also posts the first Monday of the month at Romancing The Genres.

You can follow Judith on Twitter: JudithAshley19

Check out Judith’s website and her Windtree Press author page.


Judith also is on Facebook. Here’s the link

Monday, January 11, 2016

#PeaceMatters

#PeaceMatters

It was dark when my granddaughter came in the door with a small package in her hand. “What’s this doing outside?”

I hadn’t gone out to get the mail – too much junk mail these days and it was cold, windy and icy.

Since she had her baby daughter with her, I was distracted so didn’t open the package until the next morning.

Once opened, I found a beautiful blue sparkly box inside with a card. When I opened the box I was delighted to see business size cards with the message “Peace Matters.” 

Upon further inspection, I found a larger sign with the same words. 

I’ve been blogging for several months about things we can do to create our own happiness and make the world (ours and others) a better place.

My friend had a similar idea – just coming from a different perspective.

Peace does matter. It matters globally as well as in our individual lives. If you live in a violent home or neighborhood, you do not sleep as well as you do when you feel safe. The tension in your body can create health problems which can affect your life in hundreds if not thousands of ways.

It is much easier to see the beauty around you and feel joy and happiness if you feel safe. And safety is a direct by-product of PEACE.

What are your ideas about the sign “Peace Matters”? I’m given away two “Peace Matters” business size cards to two people who leave comments who are in North America. Please leave your email address if you want a chance to win.

Judith Ashley is the author of The Sacred Women’s Circle series, contemporary romantic fiction that honors spiritual practices that nurture
the soul.
 

Judith also posts the first Monday of the month at Romancing The Genres.

You can follow Judith on Twitter: JudithAshley19

Check out Judith’s website and her Windtree Press author page.


Judith also is on Facebook. Here’s the link

Monday, January 4, 2016

Happy New Year!!!

There is a song with the line “another year older and deeper in debt”. I find that a depressing view of a new year so here is my mantra for 2016.

Another year is here and All is right in my world.

Having the view that our life is unfolding as it should is a double-edged sword.

When everything is going well, it is easy to lay claim to what is happening.

When everything is not going well, it is much more difficult to find the bits and pieces that still work; to stay focused on the positive; to still claim our lives and find our way forward.

Having had many disruptions in 2015, I know how hard it is to stay focused on the positive. However, those disruptions and the work I had to do to find and focus on what was still working was well worth it because I’m stronger in my determination to manifest my dreams into my reality in 2016.

Every Monday I’ll be posting a blog on something positive. I’ll invite you to join me on a quest to find ways to interact with other in such a way that our world and the world of others will be a better place.

Please accept my invitation and join me!

Share what you do to move from a negative mindset to a positive one.

Share what you see going on in the world around you.

Judith Ashley is the author of The Sacred Women’s Circle series, contemporary romantic fiction that honors spiritual practices that nurture the soul. 

Judith also posts the first Monday of the month at Romancing The Genres.

You can follow Judith on Twitter: JudithAshley19

Check out Judith’s website and her Windtree Press author page.


Judith also is on Facebook. Here’s the link