Propelling Pro-action in this New Year & beyond!

People who used to be very generous, kind and gentle are sometimes struck deeply by exploitation and manipulation that they either react too much or withdraw themselves into a solitary place. Emotional out bursts could be present when one’s limits are tried. I was surprised to see some of my strong negative reactions some years ago when I felt exploited beyond the limits. People who knew me to be a person full of heart approaches and gentleness were hurt by some of my over reactions. And it took some months of inner journey and integration to reconcile with the hostile realities I was facing.

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While facing a stark reality of life where one may tend to lose the existential grip can be very painful. Take the example of people who have to suddenly leave their homes and native country due to an emergency may tend to be reactive.

Proactive approach proposed by Stephen R. Covey is a great source of strength and resilience. I got many insights from his well-read book “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People.” After that the very word ‘proactive’ used to bring new surge of energy into my being.

https://www.stephencovey.com/

http://www.franklincovey.com/leadership/

It is an attitude of response with conscious awareness of the realities of life that had led us into pain and accept the weakness if it is true and also bear the pain with resolve to achieve something. He asks us to use our imagination to do the brain storming to try different possibilities and never give up gaining support from the independent will. If we continue to be optimistic and pro-active. In our world of competition one could be led to react everyday if he is under stress but one can also make up one’s will to be passionate positive. We need integrated initiatives to see beyond obstacles the hope of arriving at our goals. For more insights in this way you may also visit my other blog: www.charlesalphonse.blogspot.com

Is this way a to lasting happiness…?

We all are searching for lasting happiness. But some people are remarkable in their ways that go beyond ordinary comprehension in their heroic attitudes and generosity. Here in this picture is an example of true generosity that transcends ordinary levels and all religious barriers. It proves that in all of us there is a humanity that can unite our hearts and mind. Hat off to these noble people!

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During the moments of Anxiety & fear … What can we do?

In all our lives there could be moments when our roots are shaken due to some untoward happening or failure. During those painful or frightening moments the predominant emotions like fear and anxiety surface in great proportions.

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“I am afraid that my reputation will be gone. I fear terribly that someone my tarnish my name in the web by publishing materials against me. What will my family think about me if it happens? Will I be able to stand the calumny of my opponents? How could I safeguard my good reputation? I think it is better that I run away somewhere to the unknown place…” Thoughts of this nature are sure to surge in times of great agony, accusation and fall. Have you had these moments in your life? How to help people who suffer similar moments of uncertainty and anxiety?

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The possible responses:

-Talk to someone who care about you. A Good counselor, a friend, a caring family member who can understand or a spiritual companion

-Inhibit: Mind will crowd you with too many anxious thoughts so try to set priorities and say that you will deal with one issue at a time.

-Positive whispers to boost the inner child: Tell to yourself that you are in control of yourself. You are a good person, sincere, noble and genuine. You will do your best to improve the situation. There are people to support you… etc.

-Deep breathing: deep breathing is said to be of great help to handle a crisis moment. I used to ask stressed people to inhale and exhale slowly and deeply as often as possible specially during the moment of deep stress and anxiety. It has calming effect on our whole person.

-Handling anxiety: Too many things will bring more anxious thoughts and to handle this one could just doing some relaxation exercise, sing a song that gives hope and optimism, go for a free walk.

-Meditation: I would recommend a ‘Harmonic Integration Meditation’ Try to find a quiet place in your vicinity and sit quietly there for a while  if you can. Then being there slowly become aware of the Creator God’s presence in and around you. In fantasy go to a comfort zone and be there with the beloved Creator God in a way that pleases you. Allow the healing grace and warmth of HIM/HER flow through you and into the persons/situations that make you suffer. Surrender everything and be there as long as you wanted. Reminding yourself that you rely on God’s help and will overcome this agony with His/Her help. You may also visit: http://charlesalphonse.blogspot.co.il/2016/11/purnarita-dhyana-harmonious-integration.html

-Plan out a course of action/response with the help of friends and others who can be of support and help to you. Believe & remember that you have the potential within to respond appropriately!

‘Miracle’ by Stephanie Norgate

You are right Stephanie! Miracles are present every where specially in places where we least expect. Because most of the time our horizons are narrowed down due to our prejudices and may be from wounds.
Let us become miracle workers through our love filled attitudes and generosity. It’s time that we start doing something to touch the hearts that are closed in rigidity and selfishness.
We need miracles & eyes to recognise them.

Thanks for your invitation to enter further into the world of miracles!

And Other Poems

Miracle

In supermarkets, strapped
in a trolley,

on the motorway,
belted in the back of a car,

under the foundered houses,
open mouthed and fed by drips,

in a box drilled with holes,
in the hold of a boat,

in fish crates and on cardboard,
on pallets and straw,

on a bed of needles
on the forest floor,

in the curve of a rosy scarf
tied to a woman’s back,

in a line of walkers
along railway tracks,

under a tarpaulin
on mud and sand,

a child is sleeping,
a child is sleeping.

(This poem was first read at the Chalk Poets Reading at Winchester Poetry Festival, Friday 7 October 2016)


Stephanie Norgate leads the Creative Writing MA at Chichester University. Her most recent collection is The Blue Den (Bloodaxe)

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A Brother who sang peace songs with the birds! — Holistic and Creative Optimism

Yesterday I read an interesting article in BBC website with the title: The Magpie that saved a family by Vibeke Venema. According to her: “Sam Bloom fell into a deep depression after a fall from a roof terrace during a family holiday left her paralyzed from the chest down. But help was to come from…

via A Brother who sang peace songs with the birds! — Holistic and Creative Optimism

Harmonious Integration

What does this mean?

In one of my recent seminars one of our participants raised this question. Today we hear a lot about integration and so what does this mean? Another person asked what does this mean to be an integrated person in this violence filled & exploiting world?

Like once a middle aged person approached an elderly person and began talking about the world conflicts and particularly the political and religious conflicts that affect the world. Immediately the elderly person closed his eyes and said: Leave me alone and don’t disturb my serenity.”

Respecting people for their age we need to also ask a serious question about what does it mean to be an integrated person in this world of ours. Is it to close ourselves within a protected shell and avoid facing the reality ?

Harmony could come by individual and common initiatives of integration. Truly inspired people cannot keep quiet, they have to do something and be somebody to make this world little more harmonious place. In this process one may have to make big sacrifices, sometimes loose the comfort, power and even very life. There are some realities where there is no other choice than to be pro-active if not one may be led to violent reactions.

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Important target groups are our Children & Youth: Our present and future youth need attention and affection along with other motivational educative measures to have a global mindset while growing up in a local context. Some of them are deprived of safer, conducive and affectionate environment to grow healthily. In all the war & conflict ridden countries, children are the worst affected persons who are in danger of becoming rigid, violent and cold. They are disintegrated in many ways. All truly sensible and faith-filled people have the responsibility to come together to transform this world a better place of respect, love and dignity. Running away is neither the solution nor the sign of integration. What we need is global collaboration for a just and safer world.

 

Musings about Mother Teresa (2)

Pope Francis said, “Let us give face to God through our service to the needy and the poor…let us carry the smile of Mother Teresa in our hearts. Today she is made a Saint but many who knew her are so used to call her affectionately as ‘ Mother’ and that will remain.” (During the Canonization Ceremony at St. Peter’s Square, Rome, Italy on 4th September 2016)

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I happened to meet two Missionaries of Charity sisters this morning and they asked me the way to go to St Peter’s Square. Since I was also heading closer to that direction it was a blessing to meet these two daughters of Mother Teresa. As we started our journey by bus I asked one of them namely Sr. Anna from Poland who works now in London to share with me her impressions about Mother Teresa. She happily shared this story from the life of Mother Teresa that she read from a book written on her.

Once her sisters were trying to prepare Chappatti (a food made into round shaped pieces, prepared by Indian mothers out of wheat and other flours). They were four sisters and the sisters wanted to prepare only three to do some penance and share. But Mother Teresa asked them to prepare five so that they will have each one and also one to share with someone in need.

It is also said about Mother that when she wrote the first rule of sisters life she was very frugal and ascetical with their food which has most often water mixed items. And at the advice of her spiritual directors she added some more nutritious items so that sisters would have strength to do the hard work they regularly take up in serving the sick and the needy.

Sr. Anna said that she was touched by Mother Teresa’s humility and simple life style. Her truthfulness was manifest always in accepting the areas in which one needs growth and listening to others. What strikes is her humanity and humility.

You are also welcome to read my other article about her on our official blog:

http://www.ofmcap.org/en/contenuti-sito/ordine-ofmcap/curia-generale/nostri-blog/segretariato-generale-della-formazione/item/827-she-was-crazy-and-different-like-brother-francis-sister-clare