Giving Thanks


We, in America, are getting ready to celebrate Thanksgiving. It is tomorrow but I have company coming in for the feast. So I will not be blogging tomorrow. Every person on Mother Earth will be on my mind and in my heart.




I would like to wish all of my American readers a very joyful and happy holiday.

To my readers around the world, I would like to wish you a safe, healthy and happy weekend. May all put aside differences and focus on gratitude and the miracle of being alive. I wish to thank all of my readers for your loyalty and your wisdom as you leave your comments. You have all blessed me greatly.


We give-away our thanks to the earth

which gives us our home.

We give-away our thanks to the rivers and lakes

which give-away their water.

We give-away our thanks to the trees

which give-away fruit and nuts.

We give-away our thanks to the wind

which brings rain to water the plants.

We give-away our thanks to the sun

who gives-away warmth and light.

All beings on earth: the trees, the animals, the wind

and the rivers give-away to one another

so all is in balance.

We give-away our promise to begin to learn

how to stay in balance with all the earth.

—Dolores La Chapelle


The joy of color. Photograph and copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

The joy of color. Photograph and copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

True Nature

Our minds have a true nature and it is enlightenment and peacefulness. So what happens to us as life continues in its flow? The oceans are calm and clear until they are stirred up by a storm or several storms. So what stirs us up?


When we mentally grasp onto things, problems or trials and cling to our wants, desires and worries, we lose our enlightened freedom and healing power. When we do this, we gain stress and exhaustion, suffering and overexcitement. It is as if a storm were sweeping the surface of the ocean.


Buddhists call this grasping at self. And we do and the harder we grasp, the more stressed and traumatized we become. Our minds do have the power to be joyful and to blossom into peace and contentment. We, our minds, are what makes the difference. Our minds can heal us or can make us very ill emotionally and physically.


Rich and poor alike can suffer from stress caused by external worries. Even millionaires suffer from anger, despair, and depression. They really do not get to enjoy true rest and peace, but they worry about how to keep what they have. They can’t enjoy who and what they are but are living for what they desire. Making money does not enslave us, but giving our lives over to what we are attracted to does.


Poor people become trapped by the struggle of life. They struggle to pay bills, keep a roof over their heads and food on the table. These are all important things. Often they can’t even enjoy the little they have for fear of incurring more pain.


Mother Teresa told a story about a small boy who was brought to the missionary sisters in Calcutta.  They gave him a piece of bread and he hungrily ate half. He refused to eat any more. The sisters asked him why he wouldn’t eat more and he said because he might not get any more. The sisters assured him he could have more and he quickly ate the other half. This orphan was clinging to that half piece of bread because he understood what starvation felt like and that half slice was all he thought he had between him and starving.


We accumulate items for our homes but take little care of our minds and bodies. A Tibetan monk  told a story of a friend of his who was chopping wood and he lost control of one chop and it cut through his new leather shoe. His foot was uninjured and that was good. The monk looked at his friend and expressed his gratitude about his foot and then said that if his friend hadn’t had the shoes on, he would have cut his foot. The monk’s friend looked at the monk and declared that if he hadn’t had on his new shoes, he would have injured his foot but it would have healed. The shoe would not heal.  In a poor country like Tibet, shoe leather is valued.  It is a funny way of looking at things, but we often put material objects before our minds and bodies.


Relaxing our hold on self brings us peace of mind, and with peace of mind nothing can harm us. Even if we suffer, the right attitude will help us carry our emotions more lightly. Simply by opening our minds, we can be surprised by our own inner strength.


Neurologists are working hard to understand how the mind works and they are making real progress. Letting go of things and the people who are toxic in our lives does make a difference. The difference is being free to discover and enjoy the wonders in the world and in our lives.


Meditation does help us with the letting go and it helps us to hold on to love, peace, enlightenment and compassion. There is no one right way of meditation, but it is the act of opening oneself up to experience Divinity that enables us to let go of what is causing us suffering.


Along our journey in this life, we can serve others, create organizations which will help others, provide protection, give gifts, say prayers, and pay respect to others and to Mother Earth.


“When you speak, speak with ease, relevance, clarity, and pleasantness,

Without desire and hatred,

In gentle tones and at moderate length.

When you look, look with honest and loving eyes, thinking:

‘By depending on this kind person

I will become fully enlightened.’ ”



“God said to Moses, ‘You saw the moon rise from your chest.

I filled you with Divine light. I am God, Yet, when I got sick,

you never visited me!’

Moses said, ‘Transcendent one, I don’t know what you’re

talking about. Please set me straight.’

God repeated, ‘When I was sick, you never came.’

Moses said, ‘Perfect One, You have no imperfections! I don’t

understand. What are you talking about?’

God said, ‘One of my lovers was ill, and you ignored it.

I am him. His sickness is my sickness. Think it over.’ ”

   —Rumi, from Rumi Wisdom






The suffering of humankind. The storm sweeping the ocean. Photograph and copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

The suffering of humankind. The storm sweeping the ocean. Photograph and copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015


The peacefulness and beauty of the beach. Photograph and copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

The peacefulness and beauty of the beach. Photograph and copyright by Barbara Mattio 2015

Life is Important

A few days ago, I posted a piece about ISIS deliberately impregnated a nine year old girl. This little girl experienced rape and trauma to her little body. Today, ISIS is surrounding another Iraqi city. I want to thank you all for your comments on my initial post. Please add your prayers to your comments.


There are many people in the world who have lost their respect for human life. All life is created by Divinity. All life, human or otherwise, is precious and does not deserve ill-treatment. Impregnating a woman or a girl is power and control. It is humiliating the female and wanting her family to shun her. This is a way to destroy the life of the female and to devastate her family. It also raises a new generation that would be damaged emotionally by the circumstances of their lives and families.


Now that ISIS is surrounding another Iraqi city, the city may collapse. If it does, there are thousands of lives at risk. Men and women captured and tortured and possibly killed as so many others have been. Women and girls raped or gang raped. Why? Because they are different, they call their God a different name.


Yet, down through history, the different names of a Divine Being have separated human beings from each other. These Divine Names are the reason for wars, atrocities, rapes, and mass murders. Hundreds of humans have died throughout the centuries because civilizations and countries have at times lost their respect for human life. WWII is one example. Millions of people were killed because of who they were but also because of who and what they weren’t.


For people to rape and impregnate children, there is a disconnect between their minds and their emotions. Many are psychopaths and feel no emotion. Not just people in ISIS but even some American citizens. The elderly have no use or meaning to these people and neither do women of any age. A world where life has no meaning is a terrifying and devastating place for us to be in.


Life is important. It has meaning that many don’t want to acknowledge. The meaning of life carries us to kindness, compassion, love and joy. These attributes carry us to peace. A lack of these attributes carries us to war. What is war good for?  NOTHING.

Eastern Thoughts

Many of us enjoy reading the poetry of Rumi, Hafiz, Kabir and others. I always feel as if I have been in the presence of God. Whatever form of the Divine you follow, their words take us into his/her presence. This is the same kind of experience. I hope you can enjoy these beautiful Zoroastrian words.


In Thy image let me pattern my life, Oh Ahuramazda,

Let me awake with Thy name on my lips,

In my eyes let me ever carry Thy image,

To enable me to perceive Thee and

Thee alone in everyone else.


Let my mind never waver elsewhere except

to hold Thee in mind.

Let me ever sing songs of praise for Thee.

Let me dance with joy ever in Thy presence.

Let me await Thee patiently for Thy coming

Let that be my everlasting joy.

To be with Thee forevermore.


I await Thee, Thee and Thee alone.

I seek none but Thee.

I long for Thee, I yearn for Thee.

Bless me with Thy vision and let me hold

That enchanted Vision every in my memory,

To Thy Glory, Oh Ahuramazda.


Teach me to knock, teach me to sing, to clim

So that the door may open with sweet music,

That will lull me to the world of creation,

World of geniuses, who all sing one song,

the song of Praise to Thee.


Oh Ahuramazda, I long for Thee,

I await Thee in patience, when shall I perceive?

When shalt Thou bequeath?

I patience I kneel and bow.

I await in silence, in expectation.


Have mercy on this aching heart.

Transform me with Thy Divine Touch.

My aching heart calls out to Thee.

My anguish can only cease with Thy Divine Touch.

I await Thee, I surrender to Thee.

I look forward to They coming in silent meditation.

–A Zoroastrian Prayer which is recited before meditating





The Dove of Peace.

The Dove of Peace.




joyful song

joyful song


Quiet yourself.

Reach out with your

mind’s skillful hand

Let it go inside of me

and touch


Don’t be shy, dear.

Every aspect of Light

we are meant to know.

The calm hand holds


than baskets of goods

from the market.

The calm soul knows


than anything this


can offer from here



–By St. John of the Cross, taken from Love Poems from God: Twelve Sacred Voices from the East and West, translated by Daniel Ladinsky

St. John of the Cross has been long recognized as one of the world’s great mystical poets. His verse reveals a profound, tender experience of divine communion.


A heart of love

A heart of love





What a Wonderful World


Life is a glorious adventure. We are given opportunities to learn lessons and to face challenges. We are given happy times to make joyful memories and we are given times of such amazing joy, we need to pinch ourselves to see if it is real.  Life is golden and bright white light and it is such a good thing to be alive.


Life is also like that coin in your pocket. The one you flip and choose heads or tails with. Life can be painful and terrifying, it can be a waking nightmare. Ask a veteran what they think. Life can break your heart into small pieces. You can hear it crack open in the silence of your life. Life can produce as much darkness as it can light. It can take away your ability to trust and it can give you the friend who will be by your side for a score of years or more. Life can bring you shock or happy reverie and smooth sailing or rough seas.


So, in reality, life is a combination of events which can enrich and strengthen us or break us and leave us like a wounded bird at the bottom of a tree. What makes the difference?  We do. We are responsible for the outcome. We are not responsible for what life drops in our laps, but we are responsible for what we choose to do with it


Some people have rough lives and have a struggle year after year. Some of these people will rise up out of the mire and pull themselves up. Some will reach up to pull another person down with them. Some face terrifying heartache and loneliness and will do all that is humanly possible to make everyone around them as miserable as they are. Some choose to fill their hearts with an acid that damages their broken hearts even more than they were and are guaranteed to make someone else’s heart hurt as much as their own heart does.


Some people allow themselves to be so damaged, and seek no treatment for their damaged bodies, hearts and souls. Others will choose to seek help. To seek medication if necessary. Some will turn from the light that is in their lives and will seek to blot out that light wherever it can be found. Science hasn’t figured out yet why two people can go through the same horrible experiences and yet one will become a serial killer and one will spend their life trying to make the world better. Doctors and scientists are trying alternative measures to help people completely heal so that the remainder of their years on this plane can be filled with more light and love than they would otherwise have. Some choose to sneak around in the dark and making others suffer for what has happened to them. It is the innocent that they hurt. Perpetuating the problem and the pain.


It doesn’t matter if you believe in God, or which God you believe in. It doesn’t matter if life bent you or broke you. Each day is your choice. What are you going to do to make this world a wonderful place for yourself and for others? Tomorrow morning is a chance for you to make a new choice or to reinforce the ones you have all ready made.


No one can make this choice for anyone else. Never allow anyone to make it for you, even if your life is on the line. Each day wake up knowing you are what you are and you will make life easier, smoother and more loving for someone else. Or you will wake up, angry, resentful, bitter and try to make someone else feel the same way you do. I choose the love, joy, compassion, kindness and peace. That is my decision every day no matter what happens.











Fleetwood Mac

This is the video from the Fleetwood Mac tour we went to see last night. Rhiananon is my song and has been since the seventies. It is my fall back song during trying times and what makes me lift my voice in joy. Everyone who is at all musical has a song, I think. Music is important to my life. It is the soundtrack for my bio. I love many kinds of music. Classical, blues, jazz, Zydeco, Swing and rock. Classic rock, hard rock and hair bands. But this song touches my heart every time I hear it. Musician friends have often played it for me. Music is part of the beauty that I incorporate into my life’s journey.

My first Beatles concert was when I was 13 and music renews me and keeps me young at heart. My inner child is alive and well according to my grandkids. My inner child still loves the rock concerts and I can scream and sing with the best.

I don’t think we need to completely grow up to be responsible adults. Love is one of the best reasons not to. Too many adults have forgotten how to laugh, love, and accept the events in this life which we cannot control.  This love helps us not to see the differences in people, but to lovingly include them into our friendships, families and worlds. It doesn’t matter what is beautiful to you, just surround yourself with what works for you and share it with all of the people you meet. Love is the glue of the cosmos and available to everyone. Thanks for letting me share my concert with you!

The idealistic teen years

Don’t ever lose your joy in life

Jimi Hendrix quote

Jimi Hendrix quote