START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good
START A PETITION
x
Feb 28, 2006
The garden is my favorite metaphor as I start to look forward to spring. If we are to be the gardeners of our own intentions, the planters of abundant, joyful, beautiful lives, then we can look to the wisdom of gardeners throughout the ages that says we must prepare the soil before we plant. So what does that mean for us, exactly? Here are a few playful, simple ideas to help us prepare for a spring-like new beginning in our own lives.

1. Collect old seeds. Before we begin setting intentions for the new growing season, it can be useful to reflect on the past year. What were the projects, ideas, or relationships that you nurtured? What bore fruit? What died on the vine? What were the lessons you learned? Are there any seed ideas that you would like to try planting again? Are there any ways to build on what you have already accomplished?

2. Clear the debris. We need to be sure there is room in our lives for new growth before we plant. Take stock of the commitments and activities that clutter your life-garden. What has grown dry? What no longer feeds you? Most of us have a lot of dead stuff rattling in the breeze of our garden that does nothing but take up space. It is never too late to learn the fine art of saying no to things that deplete us. Clear things out! You will feel so much more spacious.

3. Till the soil. Earth needs to be loose and aerated for it to host new life. When we get hardened and stiff in our ways of thinking and behaving, the likelihood of anything new taking root in us is pretty slim. But we can counteract the tendency toward rigidity by taking time for small eye-opening experiences. Life can be such an adventure! Try driving home a new way, or opening a magazine you’ve never read before, checking out an unfamiliar author at a library, or renting a DVD you wouldn’t ordinarily watch.

4. Make the soil fertile. When the ground is warm, ready, and expectant, all it needs is a little nourishment. What are the things that feed your soul? What is the fertilizer for your life? Some of us love reading poetry, or listening to music. Others of us take nature walks for inspiration, or cook special meals. Take time to nourish your garden with the things you love.

5. Dream your garden. Some of us love this step best of all! The power of the human imagination is truly staggering: put yours to work for you, imagining what you want to grow in your life-garden this year. Is it a new relationship? A creative project? A healthier, stronger self? Most gardeners need a visual image to be their map and guide, so you could try making a collage of photos or quotes that embody your longings and put it where you can see it and be reminded. These intention-collages are extraordinarily powerful.

6. Plant. Once you know what you truly want to grow in your garden, it only remains to take the appropriate steps. Want a new relationship? Tell all your friends that you’re ready to date and see if they know anyone. Want a creative project? Begin jotting down ideas as they come to you. Want to feel healthier? Start taking a brisk walk every day. The Spring season is so filled with promise and opportunity. So are you.

Visibility: Everyone
Tags:
Posted: Feb 28, 2006 9:20am
Feb 15, 2006
A recent poll shows that one fifth of the American people believe the government has listened in to their phone conversations. Do you think you've been wiretapped?
( responses)
Visibility: Everyone
Tags:
Posted: Feb 15, 2006 5:37am
Dec 27, 2005
New Year makes optimists of us all. When we make our resolutions and prepare to start a fresh new chapter in our lives (as Anne of Green Gables said, "With no mistakes in it") we embrace the hopefulness of the clean slate, the chance to do it better, to do it right.

But. . .what if doing it “right” isn’t really the goal? What are the behaviors we can embrace that could truly create a better, more peaceful, more spirit-centered world? Here are some radically loving, liberating ideas to help us be the change we want to see; it really can begin with each one of us.

1. Embrace yourself right now, just as you are, with love and compassion. Period. Not, “I’ll be okay after I lose that last ten pounds.” Not “I’ll be terrific once I conquer this or that bad habit.” Embrace the splendor of your very human imperfection.

2. Embrace the concept that perfection is not the goal. It is impossible, anyway, and it becomes an excuse for mean-spirited judgment of self and others. Once we free ourselves from the tyranny of perfectionism, we become so much more relaxed towards ourselves and everyone around us.

3. Embrace kindness. This is not the same as being “nice” all the time. Sometimes, the kindest thing we can do is to speak a home truth that a striving for “niceness” might have avoided altogether. But even home truths need to be spoken with kindness and compassion, not mean-spiritedness. And if, in your splendid human imperfection, you sometimes speak unkindly, own up and try to undo the hurt you caused, with love and empathy.

4. Embrace the truth of your feelings. They’re often not very pretty; maybe you‘re feeling hurt or resentful, angry or vindictive, scared or hopeless. The perfectionist will often try to deny or push those feelings down out of sight, but there they often fester and stew, only to boil over and make a mess of things. Instead, be patient with your feelings and see if they are signals that something wants to change in your life. When we can simply accept what we feel, we are no longer as likely to act out in destructive ways.

5. Embrace unity. Our culture is one of divisiveness. Most fundamentalism of any stripe is based on the belief that there is only One Way and if you‘re not on it, you‘re not quite human (and, therefore, terrible things may be done to you with impunity.) Instead, we could hold on to the image of the earth seen from the moon--like a small bright jewel floating in an immense dark sky--and the thought that all of us who are fortunate enough to be here now are deeply connected, no matter what beliefs or circumstances divide us. The fact of our presence together on this planet is reason enough to connect.

6. Embrace connection. Do what you can to feel re-connected to nature, to others, to your own inner wisdom. Turn off the television and take a moonlit walk. Sing with friends. Try meditating. The shamanic beliefs that underlie all of humanity from its earliest beginnings spring from the certainty of a great web that connects all things. Take comfort in this.

7. Embrace What Is. Take time every day, if you can, to slow down and be present to whatever is going on. Just breathe and pay attention, without judging or evaluating, just being with it, gently and mindfully.

8. Embrace gratitude. Be grateful, if you can, for your senses, your mind, your upspringing energy. Be thankful for the gifts and blessings in your life, whatever they are. Take time as often as you can to open your heart in gratitude for the great gift of this life, this continual opportunity to grow, this heartbreakingly beautiful planet.

Visibility: Everyone
Tags:
Posted: Dec 27, 2005 6:06am
Dec 19, 2005
We at Care2 want to do the right thing for the planet. So what do you feel is the single most important thing you can do, or are already doing, to make a positive difference to the future of the world? Please share!


( responses)
Visibility: Everyone
Tags:
Posted: Dec 19, 2005 12:18pm
Dec 14, 2005

If you spend most of your life chained to the computer, like me, it can be a real challenge to meet Mr. Right. Unless, of course, you use the computer to do just that. Yep, like millions of others, I’m thinking about joining an online dating site--but my alarm bells are ringing. I hope I’m intuitive enough to weed out the criminally insane but, threats to life and limb aside, the combo of photos and emailing just seems to promote being in your mask, and it’s a time-waster: you can tell so much about someone in just a minute of face-to-face than you can in months of sending emails. But that’s the problem: how do you go about meeting people? In the old days, your friends match-made for you, but most of my friends are either happily married or looking, too. So then it hit me: Care2 attracts people of a like mind, so I could be pretty sure anybody who is a member would have lots in common with me. You can tell so much about a person on Care2--you can read blogs, look at albums, see what groups they belong to. But it’s not immediately apparent that there is a singles component to Care2, and there aren’t enough members in my area. So what I want to know is: do you think Care2 ought to promote and develop the dating feature of Care2Connect? Please share.

Visibility: Everyone
Tags:
Posted: Dec 14, 2005 11:13am
Dec 12, 2005
So many of you responded to a recent poll about the causes of stress in their lives. So how do you cope with it?


Please share what you find the most helpful for reducing your stress. And may we all have a relaxing and stress-free holiday!


( responses)
Visibility: Everyone
Tags:
Posted: Dec 12, 2005 10:06am
Dec 5, 2005
It seems everyone I know is worried and stressed. What’s going on? What is your biggest source of stress? Please share.


( responses)
Visibility: Everyone
Tags:
Posted: Dec 5, 2005 6:17am
Nov 22, 2005
What is the single most important action we can take to make life on this planet better for all beings? My friends have weighed in with quite a range of responses so far, including: find inner peace; vote with your dollars by buying green and organic products; donate money, time, or services to those in need; impeach Bush; and practice loving kindness.

Please share what you think is the most important thing you can do.

Visibility: Everyone
Tags:
Posted: Nov 22, 2005 6:00am
Nov 16, 2005

"Oh, sure," I can hear you say, "how am I supposed to relax when holidays mean having five times as much to do as usual? I mean, just living my everyday life is busy enough! Now on top of everything else I have to shop for and cook several huge holiday feasts, clean up after them, decorate, buy gifts, wrap gifts, and send holiday cards. If I relax, I’m likely to collapse in a corner and not come out till after New Year’s." Which might sound sort of appealing, actually.

But the holidays are meant to be sources of joy, right? So what do we do to rediscover the joy?

Here are some of my suggestions--with an invitation to share yours, too. Really, all of these ideas are variations on a theme. You’ll see.

1. Go to Roots of Your Holiday Traditions. When I remember to bask in the candlelight, to see that light reflected in the faces of those I love, to spend time singing carols with my community of creative mavericks, and to be grateful for the return of new light and hope and joy in the darkest time of year, then my heart settles. Reach deep into your own heart for the images, symbols, and activities that give the holiday meaning to you.

2. Say No. For many years, I persisted in trotting out activities that my son had really outgrown, all in the name of tradition. (In that case, he was the one who said "No" in his way, by refusing to participate!) And I did so many time-consuming things (sending holiday cards, for example) that I truly didn’t want to do. And somehow the roots of the whole holiday season started getting lost in the muck and mire of my own exhaustion. You may truly enjoy sending holiday cards, so in your case, go for it! But I finally gave it up, and that gave me more time to take walks in the snow with my family or to sing a carol or two beside the tree. And I’m not much of a partygoer, so saying no to the fifth one this week means saying yes to more time connecting with the quiet.

3. Accept Yourself--and Your Limitations. When I really looked at my reasons for doing so darned much every holiday, it all boiled down to this: I was afraid. Afraid of not being a good-enough mother, or hostess, or person. Afraid of not pleasing people, or being liked. Aging has given me many gifts, not the least of which is making peace with who I am. I figure that people will either like me for that or they won’t like me at all, but knocking myself out trying to please everybody is not likely to help anybody much. My work schedule is insanely busy these days--and mine isn’t the only one: just yesterday, a friend and I agreed that the best gift we could give each other this year is to say "No gifts!" for each other. If you have a big family, you might consider doing a "children only" gift-giving, or do what my mother’s numerous relatives do: put names in a hat and have everybody pick one. Gone are the days when I had time to labor for hours over handmade presents for everybody on my list. I actually love making gifts and wrapping them, so I will try to fold some of that in, but I have to accept reality, and my life is just not as spacious as it once was.

4. Simplify. A friend told me she would be spending a relaxed Thanksgiving with her loved one cooking all day, because that’s what they enjoy doing together, and then eating leftovers the rest of the week. But the meal itself, she said, would be simple, just things they both love to eat. What if we took this as our watchwords for the holidays? Make it simple by only doing what you love. I remember my mother slaving away for hours making elaborate holiday meals that were consumed in fifteen minutes. Then, utterly exhausted, she would seethe with resentment. Resentment is poison, and I could feel it all through my childhood. What was the point? If it feeds you, do it. If it exhausts you, don’t. Which reminds me: I want to give my mom the gift of a massage or a spa-day this year, to replenish. She deserves it after all those holidays.

5. Buy Less. It occurred to me several years ago that it wasn’t up to me to keep the machinery of the retail business moving along at a brisk clip. Most of the folks I know have enough "stuff," and are busier trying to get rid of it than wanting to add to it. Plus, times are tight, and some of us loathe shopping malls. So, we’re opting for gifts of an experience (tickets to a concert, or a trip to an art museum together, or a full-on astrological chart and reading). And if we do buy gifts, we try to support local artisans and shop-owners, rather than big chains or corporations.

6. Reach Out. One thing many of us like to do is sit down with our families and decide which good cause we want to donate to this year. We have so many choices. Some of us adopt a wild animal through Defenders of Wildlife. Others sponsor a hungry child. Others put in a few hours cooking at a homeless shelter, or dropping off clothing donations to a battered women’s center. It can give us a lot of joy to know we’re making a difference, and the more joy we feel, the more our very hearts and souls relax.

What are your ways to relax during the holidays? Please share!


Visibility: Everyone
Tags:
Posted: Nov 16, 2005 8:22am
Nov 10, 2005
Care2 had a booth at the Green Festival in San Francisco recently, and we were so impressed by all the people there who are trying to live in greener, more earth-and-spirit-centered ways! It got us thinking about the things that inspire us. For some of us, it may be a new idea for composting efficiently, or a chic line of hemp clothing. For others, it may be a plastic bottle made of cornstarch that will break down eventually rather than adding to landfills, or the beauty of Native American drumming heard from across the room.

Even if you weren’t at the Green Festival, it can be inspiring to think about our sources of inspiration! Do you get inspired by quotes, or prayers? Artwork or the beauty of nature? Please share your thoughts!

Visibility: Everyone
Tags:
Posted: Nov 10, 2005 12:28pm

 

 Next >
 
Content and comments expressed here are the opinions of Care2 users and not necessarily that of Care2.com or its affiliates.

Author

Cait Johnson
, 0 1 child
Rhinebeck, NY, USA
Shares by Type:
All (16) | Blog (10) | Poll (4) | Recipe (2)
Cait's Tags:
groups:annie
SHARES FROM CAIT'S NETWORK
Feb
21
(0 comments  |  discussions )
gotcha
Feb
3
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\n\\r\\n\\r\\n\\r\\n\\r\ \nA simple one page website has gone up with a very intriguing and important message. The site, Patriots for America is organizing w hat could be the march on Washington that all of the others have been a lead up to. The anger...
Jan
1
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\n\\nCapitalism is so... twenty-five years ago!\\n\\n\\nIf you want 2014 to be any different from 2013 you absolutely have to CHANGE...First step: let go of ego free yourself from GREED and for Christ\\\'s Sake d...
Dec
24
by Good H.
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\nNorthern California Beach Reading 500 CPM on 12/20/2013 - Fukushima Radiation Is Here. Via @ AGreenRoad. \\r\\nFr om Rense; \\\"The above video was taken today with an Inspector Plus Geiger counter by \\\'Dave\\\', giving readings on a Northern Californ...
Dec
22
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\n\\n
Nov
21
by Good H.
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\n\\n\\nAntimatter  \\n\\nAccording to wiki; \\\"A classic staple of science fiction and superhero stories, anti-matter  is matter composed of antiparticles, subatomic particles that have mostly exactly the same properties (mass, intrinsic angu...
by Good H.
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\nBeginning in the 1950s, American and Soviet scientists engaged in a dangerous race to see who could build and detonate the world\\\'s largest bomb. In the Soviet Union, Andrei Sakharov was the architect of this bomb. \\n\\nAccordin g to the movie, A...
Nov
19
by Good H.
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\nAccording to NIRS; \\\"Marine life in all forms, from endangered manatees and sea turtles to essential microscopic organisms, is being harmed and killed by once-through cooling systems, used to remove waste heat at nuclear power stations. \\n\\nA t...
by Good H.
(0 comments  |  discussions )
\\n\\n\\n\\n\\n3/18/11: \\\"The source term provided to NARAC was: (1) 25% of the total fuel in unit 2 (SFP) released to the atmosphere, (2) 50% of the total spent fuel from unit 3 (SFP) was released to the atmosphere, and (3) 100% of the total spent fuel wa...
Nov
16
by Dan M.
(0 comments  |  0 discussions )
\\nNew Show !\\r\\nhttp://www.buzzspr out.com/18233\\n