Sunday, May 30, 2010

Memorial Day and Dia de los Muertos.

The Aztec Holiday known as "Dia de los Muertos" is celebrated in November, but its symbolism of remembering and honoring the dead, is akin to our own Memorial Day.

"The Aztecs and other Meso-American civilizations kept skulls as trophies and displayed them during the ritual. The skulls were used to symbolize death and rebirth.

"The skulls were used to honor the dead, whom the Aztecs and other Meso-American civilizations believed came back to visit during the month long ritual.

"[During the Colonization of Central America]...the Spaniards, viewed death as the end of life, [but] the natives viewed it as the continuation of life. Instead of fearing death, they embraced it. To them, life was a dream and only in death did they become truly awake."

I have always found these ancient, non-christian customs from other cultures very interesting. Though I do not claim to be a serious student of Theology, I find that the more we dig the closer world religions get. Sure... there are glaring differences, but I find it interesting that Aztecs thought of this life like a dream, and the next life as being truly awake. Basic Christian beliefs are, that this life is but one step in the great scheme of things. Thanks to Christ and his Resurrection we will all live again and be in essence "truly awake".

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Friday, May 21, 2010

A Vision

The first time I met Sapna, I thought, “Oh…she’s 25-27 yrs. tops.” But then she started talking about coming to the United States from India, in the 60’s! “What!” I thought, “That just can’t be right!” Somehow mother nature has blessed Sapna with immortal youth. She is also very spiritual, and that’s why I wanted to interview her.
Sapna, what is your religious background?
Do you believe that the spirit lives on after we die?
Have you had any experiences that have solidified this belief in spiritual life?
Most definitely, we feel that we are not the body but the spirit. We are just housed in this body to experience life and learn.
Do you believe that we existed before this life?
Yes. We have had many lives as we are recycled souls. We are born to learn from our mistakes and to then finally merge with God when we get it right! It can take many births before we realize this.
Have you had any experiences that have solidified this belief in spiritual life? If so, would you share it with us?
Yes, my father recently passed away and he lives in California and we live inTexas. He had been ill in the hospital and right before he passed away he came to me in Texas. I was sitting on a Tuesday morning waiting for my daughter to get out of a class and I was waiting in the car. All of a sudden I saw this man he looked like my dad and was standing in front of my car on a busy road and was carrying two bags. He dressed like him, walked like him and had the same mannerisms. He looked lost and was crossing the "road". I almost got out of the car and asked him if he needs help...but I didn't. I just kept praying that this man did not get hit by a car. I watched him walk across a busy road with many cars until he disappeared. I could not shake the feeling that it was my dad. I came home an hour later and there was a message on my machine from my mom that dad had passed. It is said that some souls either come to you in a dream or otherwise to tell you that they are leaving now. My husband and daughter have had dreams but I had this experience. I know it was his way of showing me that he was going to the other side which the "road" symbolized. I believe he did not get hit by a car because I was probably the only one that could see him.
Wow! That just gave me chills! What an amazing experience. Like Jen, who shared another amazing experience, these glimpses into eternity are meant to not only give us hope; but also to teach us something.
How do our lives change by knowing we have not only lived, but will continue to live on after this life? How are our relationships affected by this knowledge?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

True Heroes.

I was recently reading a blog about a lady that suffers from Bipolar Disorder. She made the comment that she believed that Satan had given her this torment. This was my comment to her.
“I actually disagree with you about why we have disorders or any other handicap. I obviously don’t think God gave them to us, but I don’t think Satan did either—he can’t.
I believe we chose them. Why would we choose them? Different reasons, why do we volunteer for anything that is hard? Why do we challenge ourselves? Why do we want to learn at all? I think that some of us (me not being one of them) were too strong, too bright, too brave in heaven—the heaven where we come from. I think that God asked for volunteers among those brave ones, and they raised their hands and said, “I will do it.” “I will come to earth and live with a handicap, because I can do it, I will endure it, will survive.” I believe that these brave ones did it, so the hardship didn’t fall on the rest of us
I have members of my family who were among those, who chose this in heaven; and I believe I signed up to help them, because I knew then that they were overachievers that always get in way over their head. So here I am… telling them that reality is very different from what they see—and that they need to trust me when I tell them, that they are great!”
I am certain that one day we will see them, and they will no longer be burdened by their challenges—whatever they were in life—and we will be able to see with awe how truly great they are. Our standing in the next life might just be more enjoyable if we can learn to treat those with disabilities with the dignity and respect they deserve.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Scent Freak

I firmly believe in Aromatherapy--as far as believing goes--I don't pray to it or anything.
I'm the type of person who is always burning scented candles, incense and essential oils.
But my passion for the right smell does not stop there...nooo. It spills over into other things, like body lotions, bath oils and salts, car air fresheners, room sprays, herbal tea blends, spices and as of late salad dressings! Yes... you heard me... .

I am a little bit of a witch when it comes to aroma therapy and herbal teas, I'm usually bent over a container mixing and blending until it smells just right. I'm a purist, I like the basic smells, and then I mix them. Like those Scentcy bars, I love those! I just bought a scent called Sugar and one called Enchanted Mist, mix them together and voila--a perfect clean house smell.

When I lock my bedroom door to do Yoga, I light an incense cone called Amber-Patchouli that sets the mood perfectly for relaxing and meditating.

Then when my kids have a cold I buy this super powerful Australian Eucalyptus oil called "Eucal" from ebay that clears the nasal passages of everyone within a mile radius.

So you can imagine how exited I got when I learned about this aromatherapy beauty secret from a friend of mine that is from India. She has a 7 year old daughter, who is beautiful and always smells so good! I asked my friend what Sumi was using that made her smell like an exotic wild flower. She said that in India, when you bathe your daughter you perform a ritual of rubbing them with scented olive oil. She said that she has a tray of essential oils and she just mixes them in a small glass container full of olive oil and--depending on how she wants Sumi to feel--creates the scent. On that particular day Sumi was wearing Geranium,Lavender and a little bit of Frankincense.

I was so thrilled! I have a ton of olive oil in my kitchen! It just never occurred to me to put it on my skin. It makes perfect sense though... olive oil on your skin and hair is one of the oldest tricks in the book--the Bible--that is.

Well... since then I have been mixing essential oils like crazy! Now I can mix them as I go. I just ask myself, "do I feel minty today, fruity, floral or earthy? Do I need to chill or to be energized?"

I also ventured out and put it on my hair one day(just the tips), and it took the frizz out!

...What can I say, I am a scent freak!