Searching for a Heart of Gold?

Searching for a heart of gold is a worthy quest, and not just for Neil Young. Neil Young might have been singing about a romantic connection, but we are all searching for hearts of gold in people we meet. It is like a quest for home.

A heart of gold is about honesty and authenticity. It is about loyalty and honor and about refusing to become small or vindictive in our words or actions.

And people with hearts of gold are not doormats, they are strong people who refuse to stoop to hatred.

To show respect to all people, even those who have disrespected us or treated others disrespectfully, is sometimes torture and often counter-intuitive. Yet, the reward of having that caliber of character is worth the exertion.

Bring Day of the Dead Alive!

The Day of the Dead  (Día de Muertos) is a Mexican holiday celebrated from October 31st-November 2nd that focuses on gatherings to pray for and remember friends and family members who have died and to help support their spiritual journey.

I was cynical about the holiday until I watched Disney’s Coco. Now I really get it! What an entertaining way to learn culture and appreciate death and forgiveness in a new way.

If I had seen this movie as a kid, it would have helped me get over my fear of death! And, it might have helped me learn more forgiveness and compassion, too.

If you haven’t yet seen Disney’s Coco, today might be the best day to do so.

The music alone is worth seeing the movie for.

Remember Me (Recuerdame)

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Who Will Stop the Rain?

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Actor Bryan Cranston (a.k.a Walter White) tells the story about a week-long rainstorm that inevitably led to the discovery of acting as his vocational calling. If he had not been stranded at a roadside picnic area in a pup tent during a motorcycle trip, he would not have been forced deep into his soul for answers.

The next morning: sunshine.

Suffering is inevitable. Leaning into it, learning from it, and really experiencing it sounds miserable, but ironically, is the least painful way to address it.

Who will stop the rain?

I guess it will have to be me.

“In the world you will have trouble, but, be cheerful because I have overcome the world.”

It is going to rain anyway, we may as well do more than get wet.

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“Find out What It Means to Me”

Preach on, Aretha.

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Where we mess up most often as humans is assuming it means the same thing to everyone.

Of course there are common elements, hence the Golden Rule.

Yet, personality communication preferences and “love languages” are so different, that we have all had colossal failures “doing to others as we want others to do onto us.”

Taking time to learn how different (not just women and men think) but task-focused and people-focused and introverts and extroverts think is a giant step into maturity and relationship success.

Learn fear-triggers. Learn love languages. Use the Platinum Rule: Do onto others as they want others to do onto them.

Find out what R-E-S-P-E-C-T means to me.

Two-Minute Tune-Up 11.13.12 Getting Along Better with Relatives (and Other Unmanagable People:)

What We Think of You

What we think of you doesn’t really matter.

In the early 1700’s people thought Johann Sabastian Bach’s music was “mediocre, too complex, and unsatisfactory.”

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Huh. So glad Bach didn’t get discouraged and quit before I had a chance to hear “Sheep May Safely Graze” three-thousand (okay, three hundred) years later.

Gee, I guess public opinion can be wrong.

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I can, and should, learn and grow from what other people say about me, but if I start measuring my worth by it, everyone loses.

When Music Invades Our Hearts

  • Jolted by a song?

  • Unexpected tears at a harmony?

  • Moved by Gregorian Chants?

  • Hearing a haunting melody in your mind?

Whether you believe this quote or not, music is mysteriously connected to our inner being and has the power to right our mind if we allow it.

Times when I need music most:

  • Feeling lost and overwhelmed
  • Surrounded by trouble and pain
  • Out of energy and joy

The challenge is remembering to stop and make time for the healing.

When I do, the return on investment is astounding.

Hear the Healing in The Music Shop

Normal people just want something to love and look after, he thought; that’s all they want.

– Rachel Joyce in The Music Shop

I wasn’t sure about this book. Now I know.

And the best way to read this book is to listen to each piece of music as it comes into the story. I found myself asking Alexa for Puccini in one breath and Sex Pistols in the next.

I found The Music Shop to be an enlightening journey into ordinary life and into (sometimes unlikely) music that lifts ordinary life into the extraordinary.




Johnny Cash University

This morning, in my meditation, I listened to the soundtrack of Johnny Cash’s story, Walk the Line. Never a country music fan, I am surprised that the movie was so inspiring and that the lessons in his story still brought a big smile to my soul.

A few of the lessons I learned from Walk the Line (Johnny Cash University):

  • childhoods are filled with tragic loses that are sometimes very difficult to unearth and process
  • our untutored coping methods are usually destructive
  • messy lives still tell the truth
  • if we sing the song no one else is singing we will bring hope to others
  • hang on ’til the end

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“I Saw Her Standing There”

Listening to the Beatles yesterday took me back to my first dance. I was 11. I stood against the wall most of the night wanting someone to ask me to dance.

This song started to play and a boy asked me to dance. I was euphoric, but, I spent the entire dance worrying about how I was dancing and what he thought of me. After the dance, my new friend vanished.

How much easier my life would have been at that sock-hop had I just accepted myself and noticed people more! But, alas, all my energy was tied up in a desperate attempt to justify my existence.

In the end, the biggest revelation for most of us will be…life was a lot less complicated than we thought. 

I could have been “standing there” with joy.