Rebel Girls: 95 Photos of Feminists around the World


I found these images posted by Carmen at AutoStraddle.com — 95 images of women protesting against their poor treatment, against their subjection and for their right to be equal.

 

Here in America we call it the Equal Rights Amendment.  Across the world it is called Human Rights, and it is the most universal right of all — the right to self-determination, regardless of sex or economic class.

 

We are not alone in our struggle, the struggle exists across the globe, wherever women are seen as objects and possessions, instead of equals and partners.

 

Could you look these women in the eye and say:  you are not as good as a man?

 

Namaste,

Barbara

 

 

 

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A Thought on Comedy


I believe that we all can say that the world is stressed. Both in the sense of hatred, violence, and bigotry and in the sense of the wars going on. It causes a sense of negative energy and anxiety for many people. If we add in the outbreak of Ebola, there is much pain in the world. There is a War on women started by the GOP. It is not limited to America. I don’t want to belabor these facts.

 

My father always said that laughter was healing. It is very good at balancing negativity and allowing our bodies and souls to exhale. I have decided that I wanted to give my readers something to make them laugh and laugh hard before going back to reality. It is important to detach and allow our bodies to destress. I hope you enjoy these videos.

 

The first video was one of my father’s favorite skits. It is very funny and I am sure many will remember it. The second video is one of my favorites. It is from the Carol Burnett show. From left to right you will see Tim Conway, Carol Burnett, Vicky Laurence and Dick Van Dyke. I hope you have a few minutes of stressless bliss. Feedback would be appreciated so I know if this is something that you feel is helpful.

 

 

 

 

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Reality Check


 

 

Welcome to the real world.

 

 

The Milky Way. If we destroy ourselves, what happens to the universe?

The Milky Way. If we destroy ourselves, what happens to the universe?

 

 

 

Dolphins living free until we completely destroy our planet

Dolphins living free until we completely destroy our planet

 

 

 

Twilight on boat launch at Avon. Photographed and copyrighted by Barbara Mattio 2014

Twilight on boat launch at Avon. Photographed and copyrighted by Barbara Mattio 2014

 

 

California Poppies. Another gift from Mother Nature.

California Poppies. Another gift from Mother Nature.

 

 

 

Upper Waterfall in Letchworth State Park. The Genesee River has formed a gorge. We must take care of the gifts from Mother Earth.

Upper Waterfall in Letchworth State Park. The Genesee River has formed a gorge. We must take care of the gifts from Mother Earth.

We have to take care of our planet. It is more important than oil, money, arms, greed, jealously, bigotry, injustice, hatred and war. We must take care of Mother Earth. Our planet has changed greatly during just my lifetime. There is a supervolcano under Yellowstone National Park. If it blows, it will destroy most of America. Yet we continue fracking, mining, polluting the earth and the air. We must stop. To choose not to stop is to commit suicide.

 

 

 Great Spirit

 

Great Spirit,

give us hearts to understand;

never to take

from creation’s  beauty more than we give;

never to destroy wantonly for the furtherance of greed,

never to deny to give our hands for the building of earth’s beauty;

never to take from her what we cannot use.

Give us hearts to understand that to destroy earth’s

music is to create confusion,

that to wreck her appearance is to blind us to beauty;

that to callously pollute her fragrance is to make a house of stench;

that as we care for her she will care for us. Amen     —U.N. Environmental Sabbath Program

 

 

 

 

Praying for Mother Earth.

Praying for Mother Earth.

 

Only a self-destructive species would do to our planet, what we have done.

Only a self-destructive species would do to our planet, what we have done.

Song of the Open Road


 

Song of the Open Road

 

Afoot and light-hearted I take to the open road,

Health, free, the world before me,

The long brown path before me leading wherever I choose.

 

Henceforth I ask not good-fortune, I myself am good-fortune,

Henceforth I whimper no more, postpone no more, need nothing, Done with indoor complaints, libraries, querulous criticisms,

Strong and content I travel the open road.

 

The earth, that is sufficient,

I do not want the constellations any nearer,

I know they are very well where they are,

I know they suffice for those who belong to them.

 

(Still here I carry my old delicious burdens,

I carry them, men and women, I carry them with me wherever I go,

I swear it is impossible for me to get rid of them,

I am fill’d with them, and I will fill them in return.)

 

You air that serves me with breath to speak!

You objects that call from diffusion my meanings

and give them shape!

You light that wraps me and all things in delicate equable showers!

You light that wraps me and all things in delicate equable showers!

You paths worn in the irregular hollows by the roadsides!

I believe you are latent with unseen existences, you are so dear to me.

 

All seems beautiful to me,

I can repeat over to men and women, You have done such good to me

I can repeat over to men and women,

I will recruit for myself and you as I go,

I will scatter myself among men and women as I go,

I will toss a new gladness and roughness among them,

Whoever denies me it shall not trouble me,

Whoever accepts me he or she shall be blessed and shall bless me.   —excerpted from Walt Whitman, Leaves of Grass

 

 

Acrylic painting of courtyard in the French Quarter. Painted and copyrighted 2009

Acrylic painting of courtyard in the French Quarter. Painted and copyrighted 2009 by Barbara Mattio

 

 

 

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The Bahamas. Photograph taken and copyrighted 2013

The Bahamas. Photograph taken and copyrighted 2013

 

 

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Our Journey in Life


Autumn color

Autumn color

          Presque Isle, Pa.

The present moment, the here and now moment is the most important moment. Each moment is fleeting and passes us by very quickly. When we are children the present moment is their entire world. As adults, we know that each fleeting moment will be followed by another moment and another and another. The present moment of time in the history of the universe because it is the only time we have any control over.  This is why it is important to teach our children what is important, which values really count, and hope we have given them what they need to carry on after we are gone.

This means walking our path and traveling our journey. A major part of our journey in life is figuring out what our purpose is.  Just what is the reason we are put here? If our lives have not been enchanted, we wonder what is wrong. If we have experienced violence and abuse. Even though we are almost at the end of October, Domestic Violence Awareness Month,  Abuse can and will happen at any time during the year. You may not hear as much or read as much about it as you have been this month but those of us who  do work or did work in DV are still here and caring for your safety. Once again, I have to say you are never alone. If attempts are being made to isolate you, we are here. The hotlines will still work, the shelters will still be there and nothing will ever change this fact.

Purple ribbons signify that we do not accept Domestic Violence

Purple ribbons signify that we do not accept Domestic Violence

Be assured you were not put on a path of slavery, abuse and other forms of violence. The strength and determination to get yourself out and to a safe place is inside you. God wants none of us to suffer. You must not listen to the abuser who is telling you how stupid, and ugly you are. Emotional abuse will include that no one else will want you, you are a terrible parent, no one cares about what happens to you. If you are hearing lies like this know that they are not true. The Divine One is within you and you are strong, you are beautiul, you are intelligent.

So what is the reason we are here? Where is our journey taking us and what are we to discover? Some people find their answer with work, others with their avocation. Some form a link between the two.  To change the world for the better you don’t need to be a king, a prince, president or a prophet. God’s plan is that it only takes one human being, doing good right in the present moment.

Inside of yourself are seeds for you to sow. Seeds of hope in your own heart and in the hearts of people around you. This is how you build bonds by the ties of hope and trust. When you put yourself into a place of hope and trust it builds not only within  ourselves but also for the world. A positive, hopeful countenance to the world, then the small world that we call our everyday life can become richer with meaning and filled with the positive presence of hope.

 Truly Magestic Tree that come from a seed someone sowed to make their world a better place to be.

Truly Majestic Tree that come from a seed someone sowed to make their world a better place to be.

The Prognosis for Mother Earth


Our planet as it really is

“More things are wrought by prayer than this world dreams of.” —-Alfred Lord Tennyson

Invoking the powers of the Universe or bestowing our blessing on the Earth or other beings is neither a simple benevolent wish nor an act of hubris.. It is an act of creative consciousness. .As we shake off all other desires, we can proceed on our relationship with the whole Universe.

Peace be to earth and to airy space!
Peace be to heaven, peace to the waters,
Peace to the plant and peace to the trees!
May all the powers grant me peace!
By this invocation of peace may peace be diffused!
By this invocation of peace may peace bring peace!
With this peace the dreadful I now appease,
With this peace the cruel I now appease,
With this peace all evil I now appease,
So that peace may prevail, happiness prevail
May everything for us to be peaceful.”
——–Atharva Veda XIX

Prayers and blessings bring us into alignment with the rest of creation. They directly express our intentions and and utter wishes we hope to be achieved. We offer an invocation or blessings and we become mindful co-creators in this unfolding Universe.

“This is what I want to happen,
That our Earth Mother may not be closed in ground corn four times over…
In order that the country may be this way
I have made my prayer sticks into something alive.”
——–Zuni prayer

There is some magic to some prayers. Not the superstitious sort we usually think of, but rather in the ecological sense of the creative flux of all things. Through our blessings and superstitions we acknowledge this network of forces that flows through the world. This awakens the deeper levels, of our consciousness to affect these patterns of change.

It is an act of creative confidence, these invocations and prayers. It empties us of the needs of our personality, our ego, or the demands of our society, we free ourselves to come into a dynamic relationship with the whole Universe.

The color of Earth;  Photo by Barbara Mattio

The Journey of life can take us down beautiful paths

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Choose Peace


Life is thankfully full of choices for us all to make. I am sure we make hundreds each and every day. Each of us can choose peace or we can choose greed, a desire for money and power, or not to love or care for anyone else in life besides ourselves. This might well be said to be the most important choice we will ever make in our lives. Our choosing to reject war may even save lives. Yes, I realize I am idealistic. I confess, if you hadn’t already guessed. :) There is much on the line, innocent lives, returning soldiers who will never be the same mentally and emotionally. There is also the physical cost of sending our young bright kids off to a war that could be avoided.

“Let us be united,

Let us speak in harmony,

Let our minds apprehend alike.

Common be our prayer,

Common be the end of our assembly,

Common be our resolution,

Common be our deliberations.

Alike be our feelings, 

Unified be our hearts,

Common be our intentions,

Perfect be our Unity.”

                         —–From the Rig Veda of the Hindu path

” Life and death,

a twisted vine sharing a single root.

A water bright green

stretching to top a twisted yellow

only to wither itself

as another green unfolds overhead.

One leaf atop another

yet under the next,

a vibrant tapestry of arcs and falls

all in the act of becoming.

Death is the passing of life.

And life

is the stringing together of so many little passings.

Rabbi Rami M. Shapiro

Use this time for recreation, to look within and see if you are everything you want to be. On this full moon, it is a good time for a little inner tweaking. Blessings to all.

Beaver Moon is a time of preparation for winter and reminder to recreate ourselves. Photo by Barbara Mattio