Heart to Heart 341

What Would You do?

There was a story on Facebook today that had an interesting conclusion.  A man was asked to answer the following question in a job interview.  What if you were in your car and you pulled up to a bus stop and there were three people waiting there.  One was to be your soulmate.  The person you would love and with whom you would spend the rest of your life.  The second was your best friend who previously had saved your life.  The third was an elderly lady who was ill and needed medical attention.  Who would you pick up?  Here was his answer. He gave his car keys to his best friend to take the elderly lady to the hospital.  He remained behind to meet and get to know the person he would love forever.  He clearly answered outside of the box.  We don’t always have to make one choice.  We can use our innate ability to find a solution that supports everyone.

This Facebook article was shared by NTD.TV Inspired Life. Here is who they are:

At NTD we believe the integrity of our world hinges on the accurate and truthful spreading of information. We dedicate ourselves to provide a source of truth, no matter the odds, and shed light on major issues that the world deserves to know. We cover the stories that others don’t. Our unbiased news provides critical information and insights. Our focused, exclusive analyses cut through the complicated political landscape and provide a clear perspective. We are responsible to society by steering clear of the sensational and producing our news with the utmost integrity.

We try to bring humanity into everything we do and to better understand who we are today by looking at history, culture and our civilization. We are inspired by timeless stories that promote universal values and humanity. We believe that if the stories and ideas we take in embody positivity, we can create change for a better future.

The human spirit is one of positivity, resilience and hope. We believe this spirit needs fuel. That’s why we do our best to provide content that moves you, brings more light into your life and helps you become a wiser, brighter person. If every one of us can foster deeper understanding and compassion towards one another, this world will be a better place.

This service has at its purpose the same kind of mission as does my blog.  I am happy I found it and to share it with you folks.  From my informed heart to yours, Thomas

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Mental Illness

I have had the privilege to undergo a lot of mental and emotional counseling in my life,  At one point, it occurred to me that most of us would be well served by having feedback about our choices in life.  We are all the result of our environment, our parenting, peer pressure and our uninformed choices.  The world is a challenging place to be in at times.  However, there are those among us who genuinely have mental illness, that need attention.

Lou Ann and I went to a movie tonight put on by the local mental health association titled Beyond Silence.  There were three people featured in the film.  One was diagnosed with Bipolar 1, one with Bipolar 2 and one was schizophrenic.  One of them committed murder by following the voices in his head, the other two wanted to kill themselves.  They were about as sick as one can be.  However they found their way back to wholeness.  One found his way by getting a Golden Retriever.  The lady in the film used Yoga as a vehicle to wellness.  The third took up bicycling to find his freedom.  Yes, they all went through traditional therapies.  However their hearts were opened to the possibilities of life through service to others.  It is often, that those who become the finest teachers, leaders or therapists are the ones who have experienced the deepest amount of pain and worked their way through.

I encourage anyone who feels like they are unable to cope with life, to seek counseling.  Don’t go through life in a lot of pain and try to get through it yourself.  We are here for each other.  It may be as simple as getting a loving dog or other animal that loves us unconditionally, that allows us to open our heart to the possibilities of our magnificence.  If you see others in emotional distress or behavior that does not serve them. please get involved and help them find support.  Underneath the silence of our broken hearts is a place of love for all of us.  From my heart to yours, Thomas

Heart to Heart 339

Tough News

Those of you who regularly read this blog, know that I mostly focus on the positive side of life.  For me, there is too much attention given to all the things we do wrong.  Today would be an exception.  Another mass shooting in a school.  Parents sent their children to school today and ten priceless treasures didn’t return.  It is unfathomable for a parent to experience this.  Today’s episode was done at a high school, where Lou Ann’s niece teaches and 2 grand-nieces attend.  There were anxious moments before we heard that they were okay.  I know that pro gun folks say, that guns don’t kill people, people do.  However, there is always a person at the other end of the gun who pulls the trigger.  A person who is in so much pain, that they would commit a horrible act of violence; often to people they know.  And there is also many innocent youngsters gunned down because they got on a yellow school bus and trusted.

I admit that I am an anti-gun person.  I would love for all guns to be collected, even from governments , and melted down and we would build statues to all those who have lost their lives to gun violence.  I realize that I have an extreme view.  My extreme view is, for humanity to day by day, learn how to love.  Learn how to love the unlovely.  The perpetrators of these heinous crimes, were lonely people, that didn’t feel loved in some way.  Even if they were mentally ill and incapable of experiencing love; we as a society, let them down. A famous psychiatrist said once, that people we call insane, are like us or we are like them in some ways.  He said, that if we had experienced the exact same life as they had, we would probably have made the same choices.  We literally do not know the heart and soul of another, totally.

Here we are again.  There will be lots of discussion following this incident and not much will ever be done, to prevent it from happening again and again.  Until most of us model for others how to live from a place of love, it won’t end.  Until we find a way to care so much for those who do not love themselves, it will continue.  I don’t choose to enter in to the argument here about the pros and cons of gun control and personal freedom.  I know this, I once lost a step-son to suicide many years ago.  When I found out it was like the world had ended.  Let us find a way to love so much, that eventually no parent will ever have to experience what happened at Santa Fe High school.  From my very sad heart to yours, Thomas

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Another wonderful movie we are presenting at the Illuminate Film Festival is  MAY I Be HAPPY.  It is a movie about mindfulness.  It is being shown on Saturday, June 2nd at 1:00 pm at the black box theater in the Sedona Performing Arts Center.

Mindfulness means maintaining a moment-by-moment awareness of our thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment, through a gentle, nurturing lens.

Mindfulness also involves acceptance, meaning that we pay attention to our thoughts and feelings without judging them—without believing, for instance, that there’s a “right” or “wrong” way to think or feel in a given moment. When we practice mindfulness, our thoughts tune into what we’re sensing in the present moment rather than rehashing the past or imagining the future.

Mindfulness helps you to cultivate happiness from the inside out. It also allows you to be better in touch with who you truly are. Even more so, the habit of self-reflection will help you find more meaning in your life’s experiences.

This can be accomplished by picking up the habit of meditation, or by simply trying to pay the greatest attention to the present moment. But you can also find yourself the time to reflect on your life and your actions. It will help you to identify patterns that help you to find what is really important to you.

MAY I BE HAPPY reveals the significance of mindfulness practice in transforming the lives of young people. Covering varying approaches to mindfulness by a range of San Francisco Bay Area programs, this feature documentary reminds us of children’s natural capacity for well being, resilience and happiness.  I invite you to come and be thrilled to see that there are wonderful things being taught in our schools that will change the world forever!  You will be thrilled!  From my hopeful heart to yours,  Thomas


Heart to Heart 336

What to Write

Lou Ann has been writing just about every morning of our married life.  She has also used the Three Morning Pages system that Julia Cameron began sharing back in 1992 in her wonderful book The Artist Way.  The Morning Pages idea, is to sit and write longhand,  on three letter sized pages about whatever comes up.  Cameron suggests doing it in the morning when we can access parts of our mind that have not quite started their daily judgments and habitual thinking.  Do it anytime if your morning is too busy. Morning Pages is a powerful tool to help any one get unstuck and find a new way of being. It has been a wonderful tool for Lou Ann over the years and has allowed her to create results in her life that have served her well.

When I sat down tonight to share my blog with you, I couldn’t come up with an idea.  I like to keep things fresh and not repeat myself.  When I used to give a Sunday morning talk at Spirit Church, I never gave the same talk twice in four years.  I did share many times, about the same ideas and concepts, but always from a different perspective at the time of my talk.  Here too, in this blog I attempt to say many things about life in a little different way.  I know for me, it is important to say whatever is in my heart in a spontaneous way.

Perhaps I will just ask you folks how you are doing?  What is going on for you?  Are there places in your life that you feel stuck?  It might be a good time to try out the powerful Morning Pages.  It would also be great if you write back and share with me, what is up for you?  Private message me if you so desire.  I am here to support you in creating the most loving, caring, joyful, amazing, abundant life possible.  From my caring heart to yours, Thomas


Heart to Heart 335

Keeping the Dream Alive

Back in 1995, I had the opportunity of going to Los Angeles to the Income Builders International training seminar.  It was a seminar that taught people who had a dream, a book, a business or a passion to create a plan to market it.  We were living in Sedona and we met Gloria Reeder in February in a brainstorming circle to help folks create their desires.  When it came my turn, I said “You know the talk shows on TV, including the better ones like Oprah and Donahue, mostly focus on what is wrong with society. I shared, what if we had a television program that focused on what is wonderful about our world?”  We began to create the show and it took us a couple of years and we eventually ran out of funds.  I had a chance to do it again in 2000 but that didn’t work either.

It is still a good idea.  I know that the media people believe that negative things sell.  It is often tragedy in some form or other that gets the headlines.  However, the world has changed a lot in the last twenty years.  Good things are happening, as well as the challenging events.  It would be exciting to see  a program about the local heroes all over the globe, who are making a difference in a positive way.  I got news tonight that I will be in the filmmaker lab after the upcoming Illuminate Film Festival.  The lab is an immersive, hands-on workshop in conscious cinema, ideal for filmmakers with a project in development. This three-part lab involves experiential exercises allowing you to tap into your creativity, set intentions and goals, and provide you with practical solutions to sharpen story and find your audience. Among other things, you’ll discover the Seven Perils & Opportunities in Conscious Content.

I will be presenting my still excellent idea to celebrate the beauty and magnificence of our planet.  I would encourage any of you who still have a dream to not give up on it.  Mine may never come to pass as I picture it.  However it makes a difference in consciousness when we make the effort.  The energy we send out even in attempting to do good, is never wasted.  There is a song that goes “You were born with a dream that lies deep in your soul.  You were born with a need to reach out to a goal.  Swear by all that you know, that you’ll never let go of your dream”  From my never ending dreaming, heart to yours,  Thomas

Heart to Heart 334

Treasure Hunt

I have a Fit-bit exercise watch.  I wear it to keep track of my steps during each day.  My goal is to have a least 10,000 steps daily.  My children and some of their children and their friends engage in a friendly competition called the Workweek Hustle.  Most of all of the people in the group have full time jobs, so I have an advantage.  I get to create each day, even though I have made some commitments to be certain places at certain times.  Most days, I either play tennis or walk to get in the majority of my steps.  Today I did neither.  We remodeled our home last year and left a lot of things in our garage to either sell, donate or give away.  I got to work on the task this morning around nine and finished about six.  I currently have 17,742 steps completed just cleaning and organizing our garage.

Last fall, Lou Ann and I traveled back to Virginia by car, where we had lived for seven years.  We picked up about twenty boxes of assorted books, mementos, writings, art work and clothing, that we had left behind. We were also looking for two necklaces that each of us had, from some thirty five years ago.  They were gifted to us by a wonderful woman named Helen Dimit.  They are 24 carat gold and they have a metal piece which has a six pointed star.  In ancient days the two equilateral triangles were symbols of the seven original planets in the Zodiac.  It is now referred to as the star of David.  In the center of our medallion is the Christian cross.

We had thought we had lost these beautiful gifts.  When I was unpacking today, I discovered them in a colorful cloth bag.  I got goosebumps when I saw them because the bag had lots of dragonflies embroidered on it.  Many of them blue, the symbol of my oldest brother Bud, before he left the planet on May 8, 1985.  This is often the way my life works.  I had intention of cleaning up a mess and making our living space better.  Then, as often occurs, we receive a gift from Universe!  I have shared with you folks before that a powerful way to create, is to just do something.  You don’t have to have a goal or reason.  Take action and Oneness shows up in all of it’s magnificence!  I encourage everyone to surrender and let The Great Spirit give you its gifts.  From my magically overwhelmed heart to yours, Thomas

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What the World Needs Now

Mother’s Day is the third biggest retail holiday of the year.   And rightly so! Mother’s are celebrated highly because we know in our hearts how much they love.  I was the youngest of three sons with an alcoholic father.  My mother worked constantly to keep the family fed and together.  She had to, as far as she was concerned.  I will always be grateful for the amount of time and energy and love my mom Gladys, showed me in my sixty years that we shared in this lifetime,  Most mother’s have gigantic hearts that do not have the word ‘quit’ inside them.  They are all in!  I watch how Lou Ann is with her daughter Uma.  She is always there to support her, no matter what. There isn’t anything she wouldn’t do.  She has indomitable energy to serve her daughter, and of course, her grandchildren as well.  Mothering is the epitome of the feminine energy.  And sometimes it is done by men.

There are a lot of problems in the world, mainly caused by men.  Women, whether or not they are mother’s are what keeps the world from totally unraveling.  The nurturing aspect of motherhood or the feminine is the link that makes the planet strong.  Even Mother Nature is threatened by the masculine desire to conquer and obtain.  Of course, Mother Nature will never lose.  No matter what we humans do to her.  She will survive.  It is time for the world to not only honor and love mothers on Mother’s Day, but to do even more.  We have a paltry percentage of women in our primary governmental offices in the United States.  We would not have the crime, corruption or current prison system if women were in charge.

Men need to open their hearts and learn the lesson of the divine feminine.  The Divine Feminine is experiencing a re-emergence—a rebirth into the collective consciousness. For centuries she has been downplayed, demeaned, removed from her place of honor and reverence by the dominant patriarchal culture. We are now in a time when the Divine Feminine is the subject of intense interest and many conversations and she is beginning to receive the veneration and devotion she deserves. The Divine Feminine represents the supreme level of feminine expression and manifestation in the universe. She comprises the best of the feminine in all its measure.

And the divine feminine is in all of us, women and men alike.  People are coming together in refreshing ways to nurture the planet, create sustainable communities and work for social change. Veganism has hit the mainstream; yoga and meditation studios abound on every corner. In lieu of sticking it out in corporate jobs, more professionals of all ages are walking away from empty paychecks to live their dreams and nurture their truest soul callings. This awakening of human consciousness is creating movement towards greater creativity, compassion, wellness, communion with nature and a sincere respect for religious, ethnic and gender diversity.

On this Mother’s Day let us celebrate the wonderful, nurturing, giving, loving, caring women who have chosen to be mothers.  Let us also celebrate those women who have chosen not to be mothers and still exemplify these traits of the divine feminine.  What the world needs now, is love sweet love, not for some but for everyone!  And mothers always do that! From my nurtured heart to yours,  Thomas


Heart to Heart 332

Loving Life

We went to a local restaurant here in Sedona the other day with one of our dearest friends Ellie Cooper.  We have known Ellie since 1995 when Lou Ann and I were sharing Spirit Church.  We also collaborated on the development of the Positive Place Television Talk Show.  Later on, I had obtained a job as a medical courier after the TV show didn’t fully materialize.  After four and a half years, Ellie took over that position when we moved back to Northern Virginia.  When we all come into the restaurant named Picazzos, we are greeted by the server and one of the food bussers named Bertha comes and gives us hugs and kisses.

Tonight we went into another local restaurant and several of the waiters (who were not our servers) came by to say hello and greet us as if we were family.  It is like a Hallmark movie!  We are so blessed to be loved and nurtured by such wonderful people.  When we go out to restaurants, we always want to know about our servers.  We ask them about their work experience and their personal lives.  We also ask them about whether they will continue to do food service or do they have other plans and dreams?  It is a wonderful exchange of energy and it makes our life richer for it.

When we humans take the time to know others at a deeper level, we appreciate it and the world becomes a more loving and beautiful place.  In some ways, it is like paying it forward.  The more that all of us take time to be present with each other, the more we will all feel loved,  and peace on Earth will be easier to achieve.  From my well nourished and grateful heart to yours, Thomas

Heart to Heart 331

Change the World

Those of you who regularly read my blog, know that I am involved with the Illuminate Film Festival.  We are in our fifth year of operation.  Each year we choose about twenty five films out of a possible six hundred, to show here in Sedona.  Lou Ann and I are on the film programming team.  We are the team who searches for potential movies for several months.  Once we have found about a hundred suitable films, a team of screeners watch and evaluate the movies.  The movies that receive the highest scores are sent back to our team for further evaluation.  We narrow down the list to about one hundred movies.  Then our programmers discuss and anguish over which films to include.  There are three criterion for inclusion.  They have to be well made.  They have to be conscious and inspiring and informative.  They have to be marketable.  In other words, picked up by distributors and marketed to the public.

We have arrived at that place right now.  The festival will be from May 30th to June 3rd.  The tickets are now on sale!  In addition to watching films, there are other wonderful activities for attendees.  We have what we call reel healings.  These are interactive audience participation events that allow attendees to experience the healing nature of a film in a personal way.  Other films have question and answer sessions following movies.  It is exciting to get into a dialogue with filmmakers and find out the heart and soul of why they made their film. There is also a healing lounge where about a dozen local healers share their skills with the public.  There is also delicious organic food available for theater goers.

The world is in trouble.  We humans have caused the harm to the environment and it’s inhabitants.  There are folks all over planet Earth doing wonderful things to help heal the damage we have done.  Illuminate Film Festival is an organization totally dedicated to being a part of the healing of our fragile planet.   This is who we are.

Mission Statement

Our mission is to elevate human consciousness and inspire lasting transformation through cinema.

ILLUMINATE is the world’s premier film festival for conscious cinema. Dedicated to spreading enlightened ideas and pushing humanity forward, ILLUMINATE is a landmark destination event and centerpiece for conscious content. Founded on the premise that the language of film is universal and a dynamic force in carrying messages to the masses, the Festival showcases the best of conscious media to uplift, inspire and transform.

I encourage all of you who are able, to come to the the festival and be inspired to make a difference in our world.  You can also become part of this wonderful team by volunteering.  You get credit for your service by receiving movie tickets.  There has never been a better time than now to do something for the whole planet!  From my inspired heart to yours, Thomas