Remembering Infinity

Spirituality | Metaphysics | Consciousness | Life


5 Comments

Remembering Infinity: The Compassion of 9-11


When I think of 9-11, I’m humbled and amazed by the resilience and strength of the human spirit.

When I think of 9-11, I’m humbled and amazed by the resilience and strength of the human spirit.

It’s hard for me to imagine that fifteen years have already passed since the New York skyline was streaming with smoke and two gleaming symbols of American might were torn asunder. In many ways, the destruction the world witnessed on September 11, 2001 spelled the end of humanity’s innocence. Millions of people all around the world watched in abject horror as shattered glass, building debris, and the bodies of living human beings rained down on the panic-choked streets of Manhattan.

Although I was thousands of miles away at the time, I’ll never forget how it felt that day. Unable to tear my eyes away from the television as the tragic scenes from New York, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C. played out on the screen, I felt intense and unrelenting waves of disbelief, anger, and grief. On that one fateful day, nearly 3,000 innocent men, women, and children lost their lives because of the hate, intolerance, and arrogance of a very few. What struck me as being especially bitter, however, was the death of over 400 of our finest first responders, our fire fighters and police officers. It was they who made the greatest sacrifice—for they were ones who rushed into the fray for the sole purpose of saving the lives of others.

In my community, the fire department honors the loss of these responders every September 11th by placing a small flag with a biographical profile for each on the firehouse lawn. Impressed by the display on our way by last night, my son and I stopped for a few moments to pay our respects. As I made my way slowly through the hundreds of flags, I thought about these fine men and women, their surviving colleagues, friends, and families. I could scarcely imagine the horrors they experienced that day and my heart was filled to overflowing with compassion for all of them.

When I awakened to a perfect, brilliantly blue sky this morning and thought about how I felt, the word “cathartic” immediately came to mind. It’s not a word I usually use and, to be quite honest, I had to look it up to be sure what it meant. The dictionary generally defines “cathartic” as a purging or releasing of emotional tensions. The Greek root meaning for this word is something on the order of “cleansing”. I’m not exactly sure why, but I felt the word was perfect for the way I felt. For some reason, I felt a strange and profound sense of peace over the events that occurred fifteen years ago today.

As I sometimes do on this day, I sat down to watch the movie, “World Trade Center”, starring Nicholas Cage and Michael Peña. It’s the true story of New York Port Authority Police Sergeant John McLoughlan and Officer Will Jimeno, both of whom became trapped in the rubble of the World Trade Center when the Twin Towers fell. Both survived and were rescued, rather miraculously it seems, by two former U.S. Marines who were unofficial volunteers at the site. As I watched the movie again, this time I was able to see it through a slightly different viewpoint than I ever have before. Today, I saw it through the eyes of one who has been spiritually healed.

I suddenly realized that, for me, the cause of this tragedy didn’t matter nearly so much as the fact that millions of people from across the globe came together as one family—all of them filled with Love and Compassion for so many others who were suffering.

At the end of the movie, Sergeant McLoughlan (played by Nicholas Cage) narrates over scenes of a reunion party that was held two years after his rescue. As he and Officer Jimeno are welcomed by their guests and loved ones at the reunion, Sergeant McLoughlan says, “Nine-eleven showed us what human beings are capable of.  The evil? Yeah, sure. But it also brought out the goodness we forgot could exist. People taking care of each other; for no other reason than it was the right thing to do. It’s important for us to talk about that good. To remember. ‘Cause I saw a lot of good that day.”

To this day, I’m humbled and amazed at the resilience and strength of the human spirit. I’m held in utter awe by the selfless courage and compassion of those who risked and lost everything for the sake of people they didn’t even know. That is the face and future of humanity. That is the hope for a new world—and it’s one where such cruelty and such heroism need never be repeated. As compassionate human beings, we can rise above the differences that separate us.

We are one people, one spirit, one family.  And it’s long past time we started acting that way.

With Love,

stargazericon

Please feel free to redistribute, repost, or otherwise share this post, providing it is credited to https://rememberinginfinity.wordpress.com.


10 Comments

Remembering Infinity: Born to Fly!


One day, we too may be surprised to find that we were born to fly!

Like a caterpillar, one day, we too may be surprised to find that we were born to fly!

I‘ll never forget one of my grandmother’s favorite stories–one she would often tell us grandkids when we were small.  We’d usually be in the park or her rather overgrown backyard when she’d spy a wooly caterpillar on a bush or a butterfly flitting by.

“Oh,” she’d exclaim excitedly,”look at that!  How beautiful!”  Then she’d laugh to herself and say to us, “That reminds me of one of my favorite little stories.”

As we’d gather around to watch the little creature going about its business, she would begin.

“Once upon a time, there was a little caterpillar.  Every day, he’d wake up, creep out from under the shelter of his little home among the rosebuds, and begin munching away at the leaves.  Soon he’d be joined by several other caterpillars and they’d all enjoy each other’s company as they ate.  Weeks went by and, one by one, the plump and happy caterpillars would each spin a chrysalis to begin their transition into a butterfly.

Before too long, there were only two little caterpillars left.  One day, as the two chatted and ate, a beautiful butterfly floated by, gracefully fluttering its wings in the warm sunshine.  One of the caterpillars stopped eating and stared in awe at the glittering, brilliant flashes of color on its wings.

‘Wow…would you look at that?’ He stared in amazement.

His friend glanced up briefly and returned to his meal, unimpressed.  ‘That’s nice,’ he replied, ‘but you’ll never get me up in one of those things!'”

It was at this point that Grandma would always break out in laughter–and all of us would too, for we all well knew that the silly caterpillar was destined to one day spin his own chrysalis and become a butterfly himself!

As I’ve grown older, I’ve grown to appreciate Grandma’s caterpillar story even more–for it reminds me that, in order for us to truly grow, we must expand our thinking and open our minds and hearts to new possibilities and change.  One of the important things to remember about the nature of Life is that things will change, whether we want them to or not.  If we let our doubts, worries, or fears stop us from trying new things, we may never know how many of Life’s greatest adventures we might miss.  It is only through looking past our fears, opening ourselves to new opportunities, and embracing the idea of change that we may discover these experiences are actually wonderful!

So the next time you see a caterpillar or a butterfly, why not take a moment to appreciate the mystery and magic of Nature?  If you keep your mind open to all kinds of new and exciting ideas and energies, you may one day discover that your own metamorphosis has been just as miraculous as theirs!

With Love,

stargazericon

Please feel free to redistribute, repost, or otherwise share this post, providing it is credited to https://rememberinginfinity.wordpress.com.


16 Comments

Remembering Infinity: Blank Pages


The fresh, blank page or canvas in front of you isn’t the insurmountable challenge you may think it is.

The fresh, blank page or canvas in front of you isn’t the insurmountable challenge you may think it is.

This post is dedicated to my friend, “Bookworm”.  May she find the inspiration she needs to become the next great sci-fi/fantasy author!

Blogging has been an interesting experience for me.  Through the discovery of many like-minded people here at WordPress and other blog providers, I’ve had the opportunity to explore, learn, and express myself through the simple exchange of thoughts and ideas over the Internet.  I’m consistently amazed by the inspiring creativity of others—and it’s wonderful to be able to engage people from all over the world in such a constructive and meaningful way.  While I’ve only been blogging for a short time, I’ve come to know a number of truly special people and I’m grateful to find that I consider so many to be my friends.

Now that I think of it, I can remember as a child, when my mom would write long letters to her “pen pals”.  These were long-distance acquaintances with whom she would exchange letters or photos in the mail.  Many of her pen pals lived thousands of miles away—in other parts of the United States and sometimes even in other parts of the world.  Back in those days, a letter could take at least a week or two to make its one-way trip, so correspondence was extremely slow by today’s standards.  Many now take instant electronic communication for granted, since that is all they’ve ever known, but I can truly appreciate the speed with which we may all stay in touch today.

While our modern communication methods are indeed terrific, I’ve found that blogging does have its challenges.  The one I seem to be facing lately, I like to call “Blank Page Syndrome”.  While this affliction may be better known as “Writer’s Block”, the challenge is still the same no matter what one may call it.  As much as I may want to write, I’ll sit down, pencil and pad in hand (yes, I still write my drafts the old-fashioned, low-tech way) and stare at those smug, blank pages.  I’ll typically begin to write with hesitation, sometimes a sentence or two, perhaps even a paragraph, then I’ll find that I’m completely dissatisfied with what I’ve written.  I’ll try again and again, often in fits and starts, only to wind up with two or three pages of eraser-scrubbed, lined-out gibberish.   Many times, I tear the pages off my pad, crumple them up, and toss them away in frustration and self-disgust.  How can it be that, at some times, the words flow forth with ease and fluency—and other times not so much, if at all?

So to my online blogging friends and the faithful few who follow “Remembering Infinity”, please know that I’m still here, reading and appreciating your creative posts, commenting and supporting where I can, and seeking inspiration wherever it may be found.  I’m not letting “Blank Page Syndrome” get me down, for I’m sure that many others experience it too—and I’m sure it’s only a temporary phase for all of us who are so afflicted.  I simply take it as a sign that my focus is meant to be elsewhere for the time being and work on some of the many other things that seem to require my attention.

If you’re a fellow blogger or an aspiring author and you find yourself staring at empty pages or a vacant computer screen as I’ve been doing lately, take heart.  Know that you’re in good company and you’re not alone.  There are lots of us out here in a similar situation and state of mind.  So don’t be discouraged…and above all, don’t give up! For this too shall pass. The fresh, blank page or canvas in front of you isn’t the insurmountable challenge you may think it is.  Just consider it to be the birthplace of the world’s next great masterpiece—and get started on it!  Before you know it, you may be surprised to find that the words have begun flowing through your pencil, pen, or your keyboard with the force and momentum of a mighty river.

Hey, would you look at that? I think I may have finally written something that’s worth sharing.  Will wonders never cease?  I suppose I’d better get this posted right away—before those pesky second thoughts get in my way!

With Love,

stargazericon

Please feel free to redistribute, repost, or otherwise share this post, providing it is credited to https://rememberinginfinity.wordpress.com.


8 Comments

Remembering Infinity: The Fun House


Sometimes, life can make us feel as if we’re trapped inside a giant, ever-changing kaleidoscope.

Sometimes, life can make us feel as if we’re trapped inside a giant, ever-changing kaleidoscope.

When I was a kid, I loved going to “Playland”. Playland was the quintessential beachside amusement park, complete with all kinds of carnival-style rides, a thrilling, twisty roller coaster, head-snapping bumper cars, and all sorts of skill games and prizes. On some special occasions (such as a birthday) my family and I would spend the better part of a day there. Dazzled by the lights, screams, and laughter of fellow revelers, we’d stroll along the Midway, eating hot dogs, popcorn, and cotton candy as we went.

Of all the attractions, the Fun House was my favorite. Everything was padded, even the floor, and you had to take off your shoes before you could go in.  In addition to many other things, it housed a huge, polished wooden slide, a giant spinning “record player”, and a dark, tunnel-like rolling barrel. The slide was several stories high and, if you were brave enough to sit on a burlap sack and let go at the top, the slippery ride down—with its several air-catching humps, would make your stomach feel a bit queasy. The giant “record player” was a blast, for people would sit on its flat wooden surface and squeeze together in the hope of staying on as it spun. The circular platform turned slowly at first, then it gradually gained speed, spinning faster and faster. One by one, we’d all fly off and careen into the padded walls. Only those in the center of the “record” stood any chance of staying on for the full ride—and that was only if they could somehow manage to endure the disorienting spinning motion. Finally, everyone would try to walk through the rolling barrel without falling down in a helpless, laughing heap. The latter two challenges always left us dizzy, giggling, and barely able to walk—or even stand up straight.

Everything in the Fun House, it seems, was designed to confuse, distract, disorient, and entertain—and it all worked marvelously! Bold stripes, vibrant colors, and sudden, hissing puffs of air from hidden nozzles assailed us from all angles as we raced from one attraction to the next.

Inside the Fun House, the Hall of Mirrors was one of the most challenging obstacles of the entire park. With its floor-to-ceiling polished mirrors and unpredictable twists and turns, only the bravest of souls dared enter. In many ways I suppose, a trip through the Hall was like being trapped inside a giant, ever-changing kaleidoscope. Some of the mirrors were perfectly smooth and clear, while others presented us with distorted reflections of ourselves. In one mirror, for example, one might be tall and thin. In another, one might be short and fat. In yet another, one might be wavy or even top-heavy.

Once inside the Hall of Mirrors, it sometimes felt it as if I’d never find my way out. The brilliantly-designed, holographic labyrinth frustrated every attempt at escape. I’d walk forward, only to crash into a reflection of myself or someone else. I’d turn a corner, thinking it was the way out, only to find it was a dead end. In this distorted world of confusion and false images, I felt nearly overwhelmed by feelings of fear, anger, and frustration. Once my older cousins began to help me along however, I gradually learned to overcome my sense of panic. I gained the confidence that allowed me to more carefully and patiently find my way out. Once through, I was gratefully reunited with those of my family who had waited outside. It took several successful trips through the mirrored maze before I finally felt comfortable enough to even begin enjoying the challenge.

Many years later, it occurs to me that life in the “physical realm” is a lot like a journey through the Hall of Mirrors. Things are rarely what they seem, the Truth of our path is cleverly hidden, and it’s exceedingly difficult not to become immersed in and confused by all the panic and commotion that surrounds us. At those times when I feel most lost in the maze of Life’s mirrors, I’ve learned that it helps to just stop for a moment and seek my own inner calm. The quiet sense of peace and reassurance I find reminds me that this is all just a game—and that everything here is just an illusion. I even seem to recall that I chose to be here—just so I could have this very experience. This soon helps me realize that I needn’t be afraid and, once I re-discover this, my journey quickly becomes fun again! I’m then able to move forward in confidence, knowing that one day I’ll eventually find my way out—and back to the Home I’ve always known.

So if the illusion of Life ever overtakes you and you find yourself feeling even a little afraid, just remember that it’s perfectly OK. Everyone feels that way from time to time.  Just grab my hand or the hand of the person next to you. We can all make our way through this amazing and wonderful House of Mirrors…together.

Respectfully,

stargazericon

Please feel free to redistribute, repost, or otherwise share this post, providing it is credited to https://rememberinginfinity.wordpress.com.


7 Comments

Remembering Infinity: Taking Back Our Power


We are, as wildflowers in a field, beautiful, unique, and sovereign aspects of All That Is.

We are, as wildflowers in a field, beautiful, unique, and sovereign aspects of All That Is.

A post from another blog, “Behind the White Coat” by Victo Dolore, got me thinking about authority—and how so many of us have learned to give so much of our power away to others.  In her blog post entitled “Big Butts”, Dr. Dolore considers the natural characteristics of our human bodies that many perceive to be flaws and asks the question, “Who gets to decide what is pretty and what isn’t?”

It immediately occurred to me that we’ve allowed society, industry, government, and so many others to make those kinds of decisions for us. Their nearly impossible standards of “perfection” always leave us wanting—and willing to pay quite handsomely for more.  Unfortunately, we’ve all been taught that we’re less than perfect.  We’re constantly and subtly being told that we’re sub-par—that, no matter how hard we may try, we’ll never quite be good enough.  We must always look to someone else to love us, heal us, protect us, “save” us, and even judge or approve of us.  I don’t remember giving my “vote” away to anyone else.  How is it that someone else gets to decide for me what’s beautiful, what’s necessary, or even what’s morally right?

As I thought about the issue, I realized that the roots of my own behavior patterns, quite naturally, began when I was a child—at a time when my parents, teachers, and other “authorities” knew a great deal more about life and living than I did.  At that time, I had no choice but to accept their viewpoints and submit to their wills.  If I didn’t, I either wouldn’t get the things I wanted (usually food, toys, or love and attention) or I’d suffer some form of punishment and disapproval instead.

I became so accustomed to pleasing others that this behavioral pattern became the template for my success.  In our judgmental, hierarchal, and close-minded society I quickly learned that, where my personal advancement or acceptance was concerned, conformity was everything.  At home and school, in church, and eventually in the workplace, this lesson was only reinforced.  I learned, little by little, that I often needed to sacrifice my individuality, curiosity, and even personal values for the sake of a class grade, a relationship, my immortal salvation, or a paycheck.  Sad as it is to say, every time I allowed my consent, my voice, or personal power of choice to slip away, there was some person, some institution, or some other “authority” there who was ready, able, and more than willing to take it.

While I greatly understand and appreciate the need for human beings—and indeed, all God’s creatures to respect, accept, and work cooperatively with one another, none is above any other and all are entitled to their own Free Will choices and voice.  I’ve discovered that each is a unique wonderful expression of our Divine Creator and that each should be free to express itself as such (so long as it doesn’t harm or violate the Free Will choices of another).

I don’t know about you or anyone else, but I’m through letting others speak and act for me.  I’ve had more than enough of letting someone else decide what’s “best” for me.  Only I get to do that. I AM a sovereign being in my own right and I AM the only master of my destiny.  We are already powerful, resilient, and sovereign beings—we’re just not allowed to remember this because those in power wish to selfishly keep that knowledge for themselves.

So who gets to decide what anything is? I do. You do. We each and all do. I hereby cancel any and all “proxy votes” I may have unwittingly surrendered and I’m now standing tall in the brilliant Light of Truth—the Truth that we are, as One, beautiful, unique, and sovereign aspects of All That Is.

Oh…and while some may try, don’t let anyone convince you that you’re anything less!

Respectfully,

stargazericon

Please feel free to redistribute, repost, or otherwise share this post, providing it is credited to https://rememberinginfinity.wordpress.com.


3 Comments

Remembering Infinity: Give Yourself A Break


Sometimes, a simple break might allow you to see an open gate that awaits–just around the corner! (Artwork credit: Lisa Burns)

Sometimes, a simple break might allow you to see an open gate that awaits–just around the corner!
(Artwork credit: Lisa Burns)

In quite a few of my blog posts, I write about the many opportunities we have to make choices in life—and I’m quickly coming to the conclusion that we have much more power in our choices than we realize.  In fact, while we may not always be able to choose the specific things that happen to us, we may certainly choose the way we feel about them and the manner in which we react to them—and that can often mean the difference between success and failure, no matter what the endeavor.

Many times you may be confronted with situations or circumstances where you might wish to make a change.  Perhaps you’re dealing with health issues, financial difficulties, or relationships that just don’t seem to be working.  It may seem as if you’ve done everything possible to resolve things—and they still don’t seem to be working out well.  Perhaps you’ve sought assistance from those qualified to help, redoubled your efforts to bring about the change you wish to see, or tried a variety of conventional remedies to correct the situation.  You may have even tried less common approaches, such as trying to change your own outlook or attracting more desirable circumstances through positive thinking, visualization, or prayer.

In these situations, there often comes a point where there’s a choice to be made.  Do you keep working on the issue, perhaps changing tactics, seeking new information, or committing even more energy to the effort?  Or do you shrug your shoulders, say “It is what it is”, give up on it, and let go?  Believe it or not, there’s a perfectly valid third option—one I wish I’d taken a bit more often over the years.  It’s called giving yourself a break.

In thinking back over the number of times I’ve butted my head against a proverbial brick wall or gotten upset and given up on something in utter disgust, I now realize that those challenges were just Nature trying to tell me something.  In many cases, it was trying to tell me, “Lighten up, it’s not that big a deal!”, “Just have some patience and wait—the time isn’t quite right for that”, or “Hell-oh-oh, you’re headed in the wrong direction entirely!”

Now, when I’m faced with a significant challenge and I don’t seem to be making any progress, I try to remember to take a break.  I sit back for a bit, take a breather, and try to understand the lesson this challenge may be trying to teach me.  Or I distract myself for awhile by doing something I really enjoy doing.  In taking a bit of a time-out, I often lower my stress level, allow creative intuition and inspiration to express themselves in surprising ways, and become more “in tune” with the Divine Universal Flow of things.  Sometimes when I do decide to go back and tackle my challenge again, I find I’ve been re-energized and am in a much better frame of mind.  Many times too, in setting a difficult problem aside for awhile, I suddenly discovered the solution was right there in front of me the entire time—I just couldn’t see it because I was so stubbornly focused in another direction!

So the next time you find yourself banging your head against a brick wall and trying to break through, try giving yourself a break instead.  If you’re like me, the step you take back might be the very thing you need to see a much easier way through—like the freakin’ gate that’s standing wide open, just around the corner!

Respectfully,

stargazericon

Please feel free to redistribute, repost, or otherwise share this post, providing it is credited to https://rememberinginfinity.wordpress.com.


3 Comments

Remembering Infinity: Forgiveness


forgiveness

The next time you’re feeling frustrated, angry, or resentful, why not try forgiveness instead?

As we travel through this experience of life, we’re certain to encounter situations that result in our feeling frustration, anger, or hurt.  Some people, it seems, thrive through the creation of discord, pain, and anguish—or at the very least, don’t seem to care very much about the feelings of others. In many cases, the people who harm others are simply lashing out because they feel they have been mistreated—and they know of no better way to deal with their own feelings of angst than to take them out on others.

Nearly all religions suggest that we follow “The Golden Rule”—that is, treat others as we would like to be treated.  This is an excellent way to live, for it allows us all to form relationships based upon understanding, grace, and mutual respect. There’s another important tool that may help us live in a more enlightened way. It’s called forgiveness—and it may easily be applied whether a perceived wrong was done today, decades ago, or even eons ago.

So let’s think about the value of forgiveness for a moment.  If you’re driving to work and someone cuts you off in traffic, you’re likely to feel angry—for they risked your safety and the safety of others through their carelessness.  If you don’t deal with this anger and fully resolve it, what happens?  It will usually “simmer” for awhile just under the surface.  Then, a few minutes later, when someone ahead of you at the light is too slow in pulling out, your impatience and unresolved anger quickly boils over.  Suppose you pound on your horn and they, in turn, make a rude gesture.  Now they’re angry and you’ve become even more angry—and so on.  When you finally do arrive at work, the day hasn’t even really begun yet and you’re already ticked off!  Worse yet, you’ve now upset someone else—and this ugly chain of anger is likely to expand and spread throughout our world like ripples in a pond.

If we can detach ourselves from our emotions for just a moment, perhaps we can discover a better way to respond to this “lesson”.  First, we don’t really know why the person cut you off in the first place.  Perhaps a close friend or loved one was just taken to the hospital and they were in a panic, racing to get there.  It may be that they are upset over a recent breakup or falling out with a friend.  Or perhaps they really were just being rude and inconsiderate.  So what?  If you become angry over their perceived mistreatment, the only person you’re hurting by feeling this anger is you.  They don’t care—in fact, by now, they’re long gone.  If you think of this situation at least a dozen more times throughout the day and you feel a resurgence of anger over it each time, you will have let yourself be victimized by the situation a dozen more times!  Not only that, but each time you allow yourself feel this anger you become even more likely to pass it on to someone else.

So now, whenever I’m feeling angry, frustrated, or resentful, I try to find and express forgiveness instead.  If I’m faced with a situation similar to our previous example, I consider that the person who cut me off may not have done it intentionally—and even if they did, it will be something that they will eventually have to face (karma-wise, that is).  I let that be their burden–not mine.  Instead of hurting myself with anger, I wish them safety and wellness, forgive them, and let the situation go.  At the same time, to have a truly “clean slate”, I forgive myself for any ill feelings I may have initially felt.  They may not suggest the best way to address the situation, but they are perfectly understandable.  Finally, I’m grateful for the opportunity to help someone else (by forgiving them and offering them well wishes) and appreciate the fact that I’ve taken one more step toward breaking a self-destructive habit.  By taking “the high road”, I’ll have overcome a rather difficult challenge and maintained a positive attitude despite circumstances to the contrary.

So the next time you feel frustrated, hurt, or angry, why not try to accept, forgive, and let go instead?  Once you’ve pulled that simmering pot of emotions off the stove, it won’t boil over—and no one will get burned!

Respectfully,

stargazericon

Please feel free to redistribute, repost, or otherwise share this post, providing it is credited to https://rememberinginfinity.wordpress.com.