Wednesday, August 23, 2017

A Trillion

For most of us, it's difficult to fathom what a trillion dollars is.

Sure it's a million million, or a thousand billion, but beyond that, it is hard to understand what a trillion is except to say that's a lot of money or stuff, if you are counting things.

If we look at it another way, the understanding of the amount becomes mind boggling.

If someone started counting seconds, like one...two....three, the moment that Jesus Christ was born that person would be up to just over sixty-five billion seconds now.

That is six point five percent of a trillion.

It takes thirty-one thousand seven hundred years to count to a trillion seconds.

That is three hundred and seventeen centuries, and we are only in the very beginning of the 21st century. Somebody, maybe Congress, ought to count a lot faster for as of today we are over 9 and a half trillion dollars in debt.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

The Eclipse

America had its eclipse event yesterday. The Moon blocked the sun with its shadow swath across our land. People were excited to see the phenomenon both with protective glasses and with ignorant stares into the sun.

For me, I listened and watched the events that lead up to the moon’s passage as well as the passage itself. I am only reporting personally here.

Within twenty-four hours of the celestial experience, I was driving on a rural road in the Catskills mountains of New York State when an unusual event happened. A black bear was lumbering up in the middle of the road as my car approached. I have driven these roads for over fifty years, and I have seen many black bears, but never one sauntering in the middle of the road in broad daylight.

Next, the morning of yesterday's solar passage, I am sitting next to a pastoral waterfall watching a tricking gentle stream fall into tiny pools and then minutely cascade over rock and rill as the mesmerizing sound captured my spirit. Silently, a doe and fawn walked into to my reverie and stopped, stared and stayed within ten feet before they gently turned and stepped away.

Later just before the start of the eclipse. A wild turkey family. Two adults and two chicks tried to fly into my office window. After a few attempts,  they gathered themselves and strutted away.

I don't know about you, and I’m not saying anything, but something was different. I only have to wait seven-years for corroboration.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Sleeping on the Ground

Many years ago, I met the chief priest of the national forest of Togo. He came to a conference at Oxford College in Great Britain.

It was cold at that time in England. The priest wore no shoes. I asked him why he wore no shoes. He said, “to feel the earth.”

Recently I read an essay on spiritual ecology, and it talked about connecting to nature through the senses and feelings of the body.

It brought back atavistic sensations of when I was an adolescent camping with friends as a young teenager. In those days, we didn’t have the foam pads and air-mattresses of today. We had an old plastic table cloth as a ground cloth, and that was all we had between the earth and our sleeping bags. What power we experienced because of the cloth’s thinness. Body to body. Earth to near skin. We are 98.6 degrees. The earth at six feet depth is said to be 55 degrees.

The first thing you feel is cold as you twist and turn trying to find a comfortable synapse between the energy of your body and the vibrating power of mother earth. Then, slowly, there is a warmth of embracing energy from deep within the earth that envelops you in an embrace of oneness. You and the earth become ONE and no longer is the cold perceptible.

I am a believer that each of us and the earth is connected in ways our society and educational systems are unable to understand or haven’t remembered that we used to know our connections. We are nature and nature is us. As I have said time and time again. We are the nature we abuse. If you’ve never slept on or close to the ground, do so. It will change you.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Along the Road

Along the Road
© 2016 Rolland G. Smith

Bachelor buttons and Queen Anne’s lace
Astride the ways to every place.
Crocheted in white, the doily blooms
Beside the lanky Bachelor plumes.
Both thrive where few would like to be
Along the road for all to see.
A gift of grace for passersby,
Their whites and blues reflect the sky.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

It makes you wonder...

Somethings just make me wonder.

I just received a check from Verizon Wireless. It was apparently what I was owed from a surcharge judgment by New York State.

They spent 47-cents to mail me a 2-cent distribution.

Whatever happened to common sense?

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Trump's News Conference

After yesterday disastrous news conference in New York, by the President of the United States. I am ashamed at what I heard. Thus leadership still occupies my thoughts today.

From time to time we need to assess whether our leaders in business, and politics and even the leader in ourselves, measure to the definition.

Leadership is the ability to enthuse, to inspire, to create, and to accomplish goals for the greater good.

Some seek leadership, some are promoted to it, some are elected to it, and some have it thrust upon them. There is gentle leadership, ego leadership, benevolent leadership, partisan leadership, dictatorial leadership and inspiring leadership. Whichever one is chosen by any individual it is based on character and character is the outward quality of one's inner being.

Character is a visible piece of the heart that others see when action is required. The heart of Donald Trump was exposed to his detriment and the shame of America.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

What are we?

What should the America of today and the future require from its leaders. What are the non-partisan qualities of leadership we must demand and encourage in the actions and intellect of those we choose to lead?

To answer these questions we must each ask ourselves, what is in our own heart. Are we a nation of individuals where everyone is out for himself or herself, or do we still collectively embody the endemic truth and enthusiasm of democracy?

What so many fail to acknowledge is that on a spiritual level we are all ONE. We all come from the same SOURCE. The question each of us must answer is, are we willing to be the evidence of it?

America began as a nation with a noble destiny to show a divergent and burgeoning world that freedom, coupled with democracy, is a noble path to greatness and from that greatness comes benevolent power and global success.

On a subliminal level, America is also a profound chemistry to the alchemy of oneness, but the oneness is not the greatness of America. The diversity within the oneness is our greatness and the miracle of our republic.

Today, individual and collective fear abounds in our daily lives. Recent leadership sees fear as a mechanism for partisan control. Plain and simple, it is the wrong way to govern.

America was not founded on fear. She was founded on inspiration, the desire for individual and collective freedom, neighbor helping a neighbor and a belief that personal prayer is a graceful right of liberty.

The foundation of America is layer after layer of noble ideals, sacrifice, hard work, and a shared vision. Fear is something we embrace when we think we have something to lose, when in fact fear holds nothing but emptiness and want. Courage, the antithesis of fear, holds the abundance we seek and the future for which we hope.

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