Aug 28, 2007

Just another Tuesday

I see it's been a whole week since I last posted. Sorry about that. Suffice to say there's nothing go on in my life, so basically doing nothing and writing nothing, leaves you, my dear reader, with nothing, so you are completely up to date. Isn't it nice to know you're caught up in at least one area of life?

So, what does a week of nothing look like? Well, I fasted from Saturday evening to Sunday evening. All I accomplished was to make myself very hungry (and wish I'd bought more of that veggie juice because it was very tasty). I've been trying to finish web pages with my vacation photos, somewhat thwarted by the fact that my computer is a little too old for such intensive graphics work. But perhaps something happened, after all. I feel like getting back into my old routine - or rather, my old routine of trying to create routines for myself. I feel like doing stuff in the home, is what I'm saying. It started last night: Doing the laundry felt so automatic and familiar. I feel back to normal. Finally!

In the getting back to normalness, there is the desire to cook more for myself, to read more and to further surround myself with only blessing things. To that end, I cut out a couple of newsgroup subscriptions and some blogs. I no longer want to read people's angry words.

A co-worker from the department next door asked me about my US trip today. Did it meet my expectations? I had none, I said. Did I sunbathe? No. (Norwegians like to sunbathe.) Shop? No. (I never do shopping as a separate activity for it's own sake). I probably sounded like the dullest person who'd had the dullest trip. Truth was, and I did wonder if I should tell my co-worker this, my focus was on family, what little I have. And my expectations for that (what little I had) were not met. Perhaps that's one reason why I haven't been myself since I got back. Something emotional was caught in me.

I know why and now I'm tired of hiding how I feel. Truth is, I don't get along with my mother, never have, and - as I sadly discovered this trip - never will. We have an odd competition going on, one that baffles me but that has always been there, thwarting any joy of being mother and daughter. I was wondering what the prize was, and how we'd know who won, and what does the winner get, anyway? But I couldn't avoid the competition. I kept getting drawn in, though I was proud of myself for not getting drawn in nearly as much as I once did. My hairdresser, who'd worked with women his whole career, was familiar with the phenomenon. Jealousy, he suggested. Well, my grandma said my mother was jealous of me, I replied. Oddly, I've never been in competition with other women; only my mother. It gets expressed as a constant battle to be right, to have the last word. It's stupid, and I try not to participate, but I couldn't avoid it every time. The really painful part is that I do not feel like she has to prove anything or that she's inferior in any way to me. I'm not jealous of her; I just want her to be Mom and my friend, but she never seems to see that. Instead, I spent my vacation walking on eggshells trying to avoid the digs, eggshells too reminiscent of when I was a teenager and still living at home.

So I came home, back to being grateful for 5000 miles between my mother and me. It sucks to be 46, feeling 16 for all the wrong reasons.

No, not just another Tuesday, after all. And yet, it is. There's nothing new in what I said above. Not at all. But it did help to write it down and get it said. Thank you for your attention.

Aug 21, 2007

Wanted: Change (and a new 'puter)

Well, now that Blogger's not acting up, and I'm not busy erasing my hard drive (on purpose), I can finally show you my new hairdo. I got tired of the blond stripes and wanted my brown back. And while I was at it, I changed the cut, too.

I'm ready for more change. I wasn't for a while because some change hurts too much (you know, losing people). But now I feel like I'm ready for something different. Question is, how drastic shall the changes be? Home, work, relationships, even health, are all areas that have been the same for a long time. I'm ready for something new, including a new computer. The quest for change is also spiritual, meaning I have spiritual reasons and will use spiritual methods for change.

Reformatting the hard drive was an attempt on my part to stop my aging iMac from freezing so frequently (seems to have helped). I have outgrown my pretty G4 iMac, the one that stands like a reading lamp. Too many files, and too many photos and work wanted to do on them. But first things first: Pay off the vacation's credit card debt(s) while drooling over this.

Aug 18, 2007

More on the Law of Attraction

I will admit that I'm still put off by the design of the "The Secret" movie. The movie, its message and its producer are also receiving criticism for other reasons, the main one being that it is focused on selfish materialism, the secondary one that it has ripped other people and other books off. And that was partly my criticism, too.

However...

As I said in my August 4 post, there is an old message that constantly gets reintroduced to new audiences. This time around, "The Secret" is the door-opener (or as some snidely say, the info-mercial) to a way of thinking that can truly change your life.

Law of Cause and Effect
And there's nothing wrong with wanting more money. The only thing that ever matters is your motive. If you want to get fabulously rich so you can show up former bullies at your next high school reunion, then that is past hurt and anger talking and motivating, and you won't get the satisfaction even if you get the money. The best way for the Law of Attraction to work, is through selflessness, not selfishness. And why is that? Because the "Law of Attraction" is a name put to the phenomenon in "The Secret". It really is the Law of Cause and Effect. In physics, there is no action without an opposite and equal reaction. The spiritual law of cause and effect acts no differently; it acts on human behavior vs. physical objects.

This is what is good about "The Secret". It clearly explains why and how your attitudes produce the life you live. It shows you the cause - your habitual thinking - and it shows you the effect: A world that corresponds to your beliefs. There are non-material examples given, like the one about the gay man who kept experiencing homophobia from others, until he stopped expecting to.

Critics of the movie say it is too superficial, too materialistic. My initial impression was the same, but the movie does go into the mechanics of the mind and the Law of Attraction/Cause and Effect in such a way that any viewer must understand it's not as simple as wishing, and it's not just about wishing for money. Money, or the lack of it, can be a powerful motivation for seeking out spiritual solutions - as it was in my life. The other big motivation, from what I've seen, is marriage (you thought I was going to say "love"; I'll get back to why I didn't).

About abundance
Let me digress for a moment: I grew up with one woman who had books published by the Rosecrucians (subliminally referred to in "The Secret", and one of the keepers of it over the centuries, apparantly), and who never complained about money. I then went to live with another woman who did complain about money, and I, as a student, did not have much of the stuff myself. This other woman was my mother and she befriended another woman, D, who was a member of Science of Mind. One day, sharing a meal in a restaurant, D told me that God wants us all to be prosperous. The universe is abundant, she said, and ensures that there is enough for everyone. My Lutheran influence told me this couldn't be right, so D gave me this analogy:

An oak tree produces, say, 1000 nuts. Of those 1000 nuts, 900 are eaten by the squirrels, 80 by other critters, 10 are rotten, 10 land someplace where they can't grow, 10 do sprout, but only 5 avoid being eaten and become new trees. Each new tree eventually produces 1000 nuts each. Fivefold the original. And there are new nuts, sprouts and saplings every year. The abundance just keeps going on. There is plenty for the squirrels without destroying the oak tree population, and like the squirrels, we humans can partake of all the abundance without upsetting the system. In fact, if 1000 oaks sprouted every spring, they'd choke off all the other oaks. The oak tree intends to feed squirrels.

D laughed at me when she finished, because she could see the wheels spinning furiously in my head. And they were. Was it really true, that God intends for us to receive easily right here, right now, rather than work hard in this life and receive our reward only in heaven? Is that fair? What kind of god are we talking about, anyway? And how do I get me some of them nuts???

End digression, but now there are questions to be answered.

Why your thoughts matter
The scariest thing you can say to someone is, "You create your life." Why is this scary? Because in the midst of fighting with spouses, of worrying about sick kids and unpaid bills, of dealing with the residue of a less than happy and healthy childhood, the idea that we created all of this for ourselves is simply appalling. And so people get mad at you for saying such a thing.

But it is true that we create our own lives, and here is why: Attitude and perspective. Most of us go around believing that what we see and hear and experience is pretty much what everybody else sees and hears and experience. And yet, when you listen to two witnesses to a bar fight, or to two politicians addressing a local issue, or read about the same event in a conservative newspaper and then a liberal one, you realize that people do not see, hear or experience the world the same. Most of us think nothing of such an expression of difference in reality. After all, we are all in agreement that water is not for walking on unless frozen, and that 2 + 2 = 4.

Are you sure about that? Most of what any of us know, has been handed down systematically to us (through traditions and/or school) by people who had it handed down to them in the same way. In other words, we take an awful lot about our existence for granted, simply because other people do, too.

Think about that for a moment: You see the world the way you do, because you were taught to, and so was everybody else so you get confirmation that the way you see the world is the way most everybody else does.

What attitudes do you have and where did you get them? Here are some that circulate in the reality I am surrounded by:

  • Men are dickheads.

  • Women are whiny and greedy.

  • You can't trust anybody.

  • Being a woman is hell, especially once a month.

  • Money talks so get money.

  • You may work hard but The Man will always find a way to keep you down.

  • There's nobody out there worth marrying.

  • There will never be peace on Earth.



To address the above:

Gender differences have been shown to be far less than personality differences. Make sure you aren't harboring attitudes that make you automatically assume the worst about a group of people. Look closely at people displaying a behavior you don't like, and ask if that's due to their gender or their personality (or even childhood) or just because it reminds you of someone else - perhaps yourself.

Trust is important, and why one doesn't trust others can be past hurts or projection. Projection is a psychological term meaning that whatever we won't acknowledge in ourselves, we project onto others. We accuse others of having the very shortcomings (or even strengths) we don't want to address in ourselves. So, if you suspect people of being thieves, liars, and fakes, and so not worthy of trust, you may want to ask what it is about yourself you feel comes across as a thief, liar or fake. See also below about "The Man", since that belief often has to do with not trusting the system.

As for trusting politicians, they cannot live up to campaign promises because the nature of government is more akin to a hostage negotiation than anything else (they shouldn't promise so much, true). As with men and women, it's really more of a question of the individual's behavior, rather than their group at large. But the media and our lack of understanding of how politics work make us think we're being had.

All those female troubles that so many seem to have, have not been a part of my family. I did not grow up with any women who referred to menstruation as "the curse" or other derogatory terms, nor did any of them get other "plumbing" problems. I therefore did not have any expectations of being sabotaged by my own body. Quite the contrary: My body has expressed good health and good healing abilities throughout my life. I do not take any drugs to stay healthy; this has surprised some others my age (46 going on 47 as of this writing). Many of us are surrounded by the health issues of today's lifestyle: Obesity, diabetes, hypertension, heart disease and more. We assume that growing old automatically involves pain and illness. But there is research suggesting that illness (and addiction) is a reaction to stress (including emotional stress that can date back to childhood), and there is also evidence that suggests that illnesses in old age appear as early as middle age and are not caused by aging, only exacerbated by it. That stress part is certainly within our own control.

Money does talk - to the greedy. And like junk food, it's great right then and there, but you want more in a very short while. Most people would rather talk to people, and people do listen. Most folks understand that someone who offers only money, is extremely superficial and even weak. If you do have money, consider what you want to express with it. "An idealist is a person who helps other people to be prosperous." (Henry Ford)

The idea of "The Man" (not to belittle the struggles of minorities) - a person or system with power that won't give a regular person a break - can be found in many areas of life. For some, it's as close as a parent or spouse; others see "The Man" as their boss or the company's CEO; still others see "The Man" as whoever is in charge of running this country (into the ditch); and some see God as "The Man" and feel like they're being punished for being human. What all of these perceptions have in common, is that they have one thinking like a victim. That in itself will keep you from feeling you have choices and possibilities. You are basically believing that someone else has more power over your happiness in life than you do. Doesn't that sound just plain wrong to you?

I mentioned above that money and marriage - not love - are big motivators for seeking out spiritual solutions to lack. Why not love? Because people looking for love are usually looking for it in the traditional places: Parents, family and marriage. So what family can't give, you try to find in a marriage. What most people are really looking for when they say they are looking for love or someone to love is validation. What they really want is to be seen and appreciated and valued and respected, things they probably didn't get or get enough of during childhood. They want a spouse to make up for what parents couldn't give. That's a tall order and it never gets filled completely.

Another adult with his or her own baggage cannot fix your childhood for you. Only you can do that. Most people who set out looking for love in others discover that they must first find it in themselves. Love yourself or you'll never understand why anybody else would want to love you, and you'll push them away (see, Law of Attraction at work). You have to be the nurturing, caring, accepting grown-up in your life now, picking up where your parents left off. You have an inner child that needs your adult validation and acceptance, so give yourself that. I've been there and done that and it can be done and it feels both liberating and empowering to truly be the adult in my life, and not a neglected child or teenager in an adult body.

Lately, I've been reading that phrasing is everything: "War on terror" has nothing peaceful in it or about it. Neither does "Fight for peace". And stating, "I want peace on Earth" is a tad vague. No deadline. Stating "Peace on Earth" or "We are at and in peace" are more here and now, like a good affirmation. And that's what was stated in "The Secret": You must act as if it is already true. It also helps to double-check one's facts. According to the Washington Post, the number of armed conflicts on our beautiful blue world has steadily decreased since the end of the Cold War. The IRA lay down its arms after 70 years of conflict and bombings. It is far more productive to believe enemies will stop fighting now, than to shrug and say, "It's always been that way". "That way" has changed and ceased many times in history, partly because enough people wanted it to.

To sum up most of the above: Be aware of what's in your mind, of where you got it from. And ask yourself if what you believe and think is really you, is really good for you, is leading to good for you.

Using Law of Cause and Effect
There is something else I want to say about using the Law of Attraction, or more correctly, the Law of Cause and Effect: You cannot use it to hurt or hinder someone else. You would be setting up a cause ("stop the other guy") that will have an effect on you (you get stopped, too). Remember, there are plenty of oak trees and nuts because the Universe is set up so, so you can get your needs met without hindering anybody else in getting their needs met. There is more than enough to go around. (Yes, even food. Food shortages are actually due to a lack of distribution, not a lack of crops.)

Blaming the victim
"The Secret"'s critics point out that it can create a "blame the victim" mentality. This is always a risk, much like suggesting that stress-induced illnesses could have been prevented by the patient himself, adding guilt to the list of symptoms. Let me go back to the beginning of this post, where I said that the movie "shows you the cause - your habitual thinking - and it shows you the effect: A world that corresponds to your beliefs." Now let me say this:

You are not responsible for what you don't know. Until you know better, you cannot do better.

The only thing to do with this knowledge now - if it has stirred up feelings of guilt or remorse or anger - is to say:

The past is past. All I have is this moment and this moment is showing me I can make a better future for myself. I am grateful for my past, for the experiences it has given me. I now move forward into a better life for myself without guilt or blame or remorse. I am fine right where I am, with who I am right now, and lovingly accept this moment as my starting point for anything I want to do from now on. I use this wonderful moment to set up future wonderful moments.

Aug 15, 2007

Missing summer already

In spite of four weeks off from work, and 22 days away from home, I'm missing summer already. Maybe I'm missing summer here at home. The rain came back in July, a week before I started my vacation, and is still here - now with renewed strength. The forecast suggests autumnal downpours and temperatures, i.e. cool and wet. I'm just not ready for that.

I'm also struggling with getting back into the routine of home. It's been almost a week, and I still feel jetlagged and restless and "unarrived". Could be the weather. Could be the shock of no more bright mornings: Dawn is as late as 05:49 now, but hidden behind heavy clouds, making my room dark to wake up in.

Yes, autumn is taking me completely by surprise. Could I have some summer back, please? To help me adjust?

Aug 13, 2007

The same and yet not

I went on a trip, I visited my mother and my childhood friend, and it could have been the usual. "Did this, saw that, and oh, guess what happened when we...", while passing the photo album around. But something happened under the surface, and the result was that I dreamt I was pregnant, a very pleasant dream (even though the reality of nearing 47 lurked).

I'm not pregnant, but dreams are loaded with their own (quite obvious) symbolism, so this means a seed has been planted and in a little while, I will see the results. What seed? Well, let's just say I saw "The Secret", and it gave me a lot of inspiration, inspiration I do not want to let go of.

I'm dreamin' big, baby! No more "Think big. Shrink to fit." (my long-time signature on Usenet). Now it's, "Think big and then ask for more."

Aug 12, 2007

Oh! Wow! Awesome!

I'm going through the circa 1000 photos I took on my trip to Alaska, Nevada and California, and I realize that they can't capture what I felt, looking at wide, unspoiled vistas, or details of human creativity and endeavor:

Oh! Wow! Awesome!

I will eventually get some photo albums published, but here is a wee taster:

Humpback whales engaged in a group fishing and feeding style called bubble net fishing, and which is a fairly rare event. We sure lucked out seeing this during our whale-watching trip.

I discovered something about ice floes: They are like looking at clouds. In this one, I see the Loch Ness monster.

Impossible to describe how this really feels to see in person. Photos never do the awe justice. But I was really happy to get this quiet and dramatic trip into one of Alaska's most beautiful fjords: Tracy Arm.

A musher adjusts the sled dogs in a summer musher camp. The dogs get so eager, they end up crossing the line (literally) and have be put back. Amazingly, they do all usually keep their place and pull coordinatedly once they start pulling. Sixteen dogs pulled us on a wheeled cart over bumpy dirt roads and what fun that was! I think I was as thrilled as the dogs.

Mono Lake, California. I found myself on a one million year old lake, surrounded by dormant volcanoes four to six times as old. Can you teld I held my breath?

America has ghost towns, and plenty of them. For some reason, America is good at creating ghost towns (it's pretty good about creating towns out of thin air, too). Bodie, California, is one of America's more famous ghost towns. We didn't see any ghosts, though. I love the pastels in this photo.

Santa Cruz's boardwalk. That's me in the rear, screaming my head off on a simple log ride because it's a lot scarier when you can't see where you're going. Whee!

Photographed on one of the formal nights on the cruise ship. Wave to Keera!

Aug 9, 2007

Mindless still-on-vacation meme

Well, it's mindless for me. I just got home from vacation this afternoon, wiped out from umpteen hours in dry airplanes and too many timezones at once. So I'm doing a bit of laundry, eating noodles, and catching up on all my friends' blogs since I didn't read a one while away. And that brings me to this meme over at Beep's, now done here:

  1. Do you still talk to the person you lost your virginity to?
    Nope.
  2. Is it harder to be rejected or to reject someone else?
    Both suck, but it sure is easier to understand why when you are the rejecter.
  3. What kind of music did you listen to in elementary school?
    Nat King Cole, C&W, Hawaiian, Boston Pops, Lawrence Welk because those were the records my folks had. I didn't really discover current music until I was almost 11 and got a radio to myself, and then it was top 40 songs, mostly.
  4. What is the best thing about your current job?
    Everything from great people to work with to only 10 minutes' walk from home.
  5. Do you wish cell phone etiquette were a required class?
    I sometimes wish etiquette in general were a required class. And I'd attend it, too.
  6. What's the last thing you drank?
    Water. And lots of it because I indulged in a 20 minute massage at the airport in Amsterdam today and was told to drink a lot of water afterwards.
  7. Have you been on a date in the park?
    No.
  8. Where are you going on your next vacation?
    Don't know yet, but I'm thinking somewhere in Europe.
  9. Have you ever thrown up from working out?
    No.
  10. Are most of the friends in your life new or old?
    Well, even my new friends are getting to be old friends. :-)
  11. Have you ever gotten so wasted you didn’t know what was going on?
    No. I don't have to drink to be clueless.
  12. Do you like pulp orange juice?
    I have no preferences regarding OJ.
  13. Are you touchy-feely?
    Sometimes. I cry at the movies but I don't necessarily hug immediately.
  14. Did you cry at your high school graduation?
    No.
  15. Do you prefer the tanning bed or the sun?
    The sun.
  16. What are two of your favorite places to eat?
    Don't have any.
  17. What could you tolerate, someone who snores or a sleepwalker?
    Well, I have some experience with snorers and they scare me. I have no experience with sleepwalkers. My answer is honestly "neither".
  18. Do you consider yourself bi-polar?
    Heavens, no! I'm as healthy as a fruit loop!
  19. What's something your friends make fun of you for?
    Being gullible.
  20. What's your worst personality flaw?
    Withdrawing.
  21. Have you ever gone to therapy?
    Yes.
  22. Would you ever parachute off of a plane?
    No! If the plane can land, then I'm landing with it!
  23. Have you ever ridden an elephant?
    No, but I would like to.
  24. Are you Irish in any way?
    Oh, yes! Maternal great-grandmother was fifth generation Irish-American, and on my father's side, an Irish ancestor came over on the Mayflower.
  25. Have you ever ridden in a U-Haul?
    Once.
  26. Do you like to play Scrabble?
    Yes, but I wish I were better at it.
  27. Have you ever been to a nude beach?
    Yes. Have you ever seen any other kind? ;-)
  28. Have you ever drunk Jack Daniels?
    Not to my knowledge. The only time I'll have whisky is in an Irish Coffee.
  29. Have you ever had sex on the beach?
    No.
  30. What are you saving your money up for right now?
    Nothing. Now I'm facing credit card bills after my vacation.
  31. What was the last gift card you received?
    Too long ago to remember.
  32. Have you ever gone skinny-dipping?
    Nope.
  33. Does the number of people a person's slept with affect your opinion of them?
    Somewhat. It depends on whether it's serial lovers or one-night-stands.
  34. Have you ever gone to a party where you were the only sober person?
    Yes, and it sucks.
  35. What do you do when you spot a bug in your house?
    Depends on the bug. If it's harmless, I either leave it alone or try to move it outdoors. More harmful kinds get killed.

Aug 4, 2007

New habit for August

I have been on vacation, one reason for few posts here. Another is, I write only whenever I am inspired.

My vacation has been inspiring. It is fun to see the Universe in action, to manifest the best for oneself and, in spite of what seem to be problems, get exactly what you need and want, whether it be cooperative weather, good company or a well-functioning credit card.

During my vacation, I watched "The Secret". I had seen the first 20 minutes of the video (offered free on several websites) and was put off by its introduction and design, so obviously based on "The Da Vinci Code". However, message of "The Secret" is as claimed: Old, universal and doable.

The whole movie explains the Law of Attraction very well. In other teachings, such as the one that is my background - Science of Mind - it is called the Law of Cause and Effect. The point is, the cause is always your own mind, your own thoughts, your own feelings. If you want something different to happen in your life, you have to think differently about your life and you must feel differently about it to the point that whatever change you want feels like it is already true. That's the secret.

Seeing is not believing - believing is seeing, as wiser people than me have said.

The movie does explain the mechanisms behind how your own thinking can make something apparantly beyond your control come into your life. Basically, like attracts like. Or as the Bible put it, as above (in your mind), so below (in your body). In other words, your physical and material experiences have a mental and emotional source or beginning and the source is in you.

We all know that if we feel bad, the day just seems to be worse than usual. A bad mood makes everything worse. Conversely, a good mood makes everything better. Now, most of us think that our moods are a response to our experiences. Rarely do we hear that our moods create our experiences. But I can personally attest that framing your mind so that it is focused on what is good, constructive, loving and peaceful (basically, I affirm that my day will be so when I get up in the morning) brings situations into your life that echo that thought. Like attracting like. The Law of Attraction in action.

This is a scary thought for most folks, though. Most of us know we are critical, negative, grumpy, irritable, etc. at times - that these are the thoughts we have. The good news is that idle thoughts - good or bad - do not matter. The habitual thoughts do. The habitual thoughts also involve our emotions, giving us habitual moods. And the other scary thing that puts many off is that if our habitual thoughts and our emotions determine our day, that means we can't blame the spouse, the newspaper deliverer, the jerk who cut us off at the light, or our co-workers for how our day goes: The responsibility for what we go through is on our own shoulders because it comes from inside our own selves.

Not a comforting thought for many, and victims of crimes and abuse will understandably protest. Let me say this: We all have or had bad experiences; we all have scars, bad memories that haunt us, habits we got from our parents/family without thinking whether or not those habits suit us. Realizing that our own thoughts determine how any experience will continue to influence us gives us power. Whatever you've been through in life, if you are reading this, you are now being given the key, the power, to have the rest of your life be far better than anything you've had so far. And past experiences will only make you more aware of the difference between feeling weak, lonely, useless and lost, and feeling strong, capable, included and loved.

Nobody wants to go through hell twice (or more), but we do, because we are not aware of our own contribution, how we repeat past mistakes. Take your experiences and make yourself aware. Do not blame yourself, or the other person; just be aware of who you were, how you felt about yourself at the time, and make it better for yourself now.

We all have an inner critic. Instead of letting this inner critic natter on, find your inner best friend. Talk to yourself the way a best friend would, with patience, support and acceptance - and remember: friends don't care what's wrong with you or they wouldn't be your friend. Pay yourself a compliment, remind yourself why you are friends with yourself and go have fun!

"The Secret" is one source of information on how to do this. Gary Zukov, Deepak Chopra, Iyanla Vanzant and others are among today's spiritual leaders in the published world. I came of spiritual age with authors like Gerald Jampolsky, Louise Hay and Stuart Wilde. "The Secret" introduces you to today's metaphysicians, today's living and breathing examples of how the world really works. And that is the point of the same old information arising again: Each generation needs to hear the message, wrapped in packaging the current generation can relate to. Rhonda Byrne, the woman behind "The Secret" has basically done what Ernest Holmes did back in his day (c. a century ago): Read about many philosophies and religions, and discovered a common theme - the common theme - among them, and then put it all together for the rest of us. (Thank you, Rhonda. Thank you, Ernest.)

Having seen "The Secret" all the way through, I got over the da Vinci Code-inspired design and enjoyed the movie immensely. It was well put together, and never dull, and is definitely a feel-good movie. And it does tell you, in no uncertain terms, exactly how to attract what you truly want in your life, and also tells you the most common ways we (accidentally) sabotage the Law of Attraction in our lives. ("The Secret" started as a book, also available as an audiobook.)

Here is the gist of The Law of Attraction: If it's in your mind and your feelings, it will be in your life.

Using the Law of Attraction:
1. Ask - know what you want
2. Believe - have faith, do not wonder or worry
3. Receive - imagine getting, feel getting, as if it already is happening

Make using the Law a habit.

I, for one, happy as I am, nevertheless see room for more growth and happiness in my life, so my new habit for August is to focus on the Law of Attraction, to discover, use and delight in my own power to direct my life and my experiences more than ever.

Join me in making a new habit this month!