VALERIEMAHA   50,870
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Relaxing with my comadre Rosita after her delicious lunch, Nov, 2014.





2013 Micaela and mom Sandra; soul sister Adelaida and her daughter, Amrita (my god daughter).





Grandma Rosita is carrying granddaughter Kealy for my godson Santiago and wife Aida in Otavalo,Nov14



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It is better to travel well than to arrive. --Buddha

DREAMS DO COME TRUE!

I sold my camper, bought my ticket to South America, and arrived to Quito, Ecuador, on September 25, 2014! Thus began the next chapter, with my current intention of gathering documentation to seek permanent residency in Ecuador.

May 24 heralded the beginning of the last big journey in my sweet little camper when I drove to California, rendezvoused with my soul sister Diana from Maui and we trucked up the California Coast Highway to San Francisco to ...
DREAMS DO COME TRUE!

I sold my camper, bought my ticket to South America, and arrived to Quito, Ecuador, on September 25, 2014! Thus began the next chapter, with my current intention of gathering documentation to seek permanent residency in Ecuador.

May 24 heralded the beginning of the last big journey in my sweet little camper when I drove to California, rendezvoused with my soul sister Diana from Maui and we trucked up the California Coast Highway to San Francisco to connect with many friends in the San Francisco Bay Area and Sacramento. My "2014 Trip" blogs have the details.

What elso is up with me?

~ Preparing for my 2014 return to Ecuador in consideration of permanent residence, in December of 2013 I completed a BA in Spanish.

~During my travels, thanks in large part to SparkPeople, I have had the joy to meet, and in many cases stay with, the first 5 rows of SparkFriends, ending with the Venerable Spark Guy, Chris Downie himself, who I met at a Spark Rally in 2009!

~I am committed to optimal body*mind*spirit health to help attune me to that "still small voice" within that is signaling the way to the next signpost on the Path.
An always useful tool for me -- The Seven Habits of Mindful Eating:
http://www.karmatube.org/videos.php?id=3
026

~ In the meantime, I intend to...

"...have patience with everything unresolved in my heart, and try to love the questions themselves as if they were locked rooms or books written in a very foreign language, not searching for the answers, which could not be given to me now because I would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now." (Rainer Maria Rilke)

~The shape my life will morph into in the foreseeable future is a mystery -- I'm trying to "live the questions now" with grace, letting go of all anxiety about the future. Oh, and anyway T. S. Eliot tells us...

"We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time."

Bottom line in all of this is:

"Don't take life too serious -- it's all just so mysterious!"
-- George Gershwin

******
******

And here's more "kitchen table" wisdom:

Your personal history is not your true identity. Don't let the past define who you are.
-- Eckhart Tolle
******
Live in rooms full of light
Avoid heavy food
Be moderate in the drinking of wine
Take massage, baths, exercise, and gymnastics
Fight insomnia with gentle rocking or the sound of running water
Change surroundings and take long journeys
Strictly avoid frightening ideas
Indulge in cheerful conversation and amusements
Listen to music
-- Aulus Cornelius Celsus (50-25 BC), Physician
******
My actions are my true belongings. They are the ground on which I stand.
-- Thich Nhat Hanh, The Fifth Remembrance
******
CARPE MOMENTUM! (Seize the moment!)
******
Happiness is when what you think, what you say, and what you do are in harmony.
-- Mahatma Gandhi
******
barn's burnt down;
now I can see
the moon
-- Masahide
******
Usually we think that brave people have no fear.
The truth is they are intimate with fear.
-- Pema Chodron
******
If you can change your mind, you can change your life.
-- William James
******
Where attention goes, energy flows.
-- James Redfield
******
Choices are the hinges of destiny.
-- Pythagoras
******
Self-conquest is the greatest of victories.
-- Plato
******
Strength does not come from physical capacity.
It comes from an indomitable will.
-- Mahatma Gandhi
******
He who controls others may be powerful, but he who has mastered himself is mightier still.
-- Lao Tzu
******
We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit
-- Aristotle
******
We are what we think.
All that we are arises with our thoughts.
With our thoughts we make the world.
-- The Buddha
******
Emancipate yourselves from mental slavery;
None but ourselves can free our minds.
-- Bob Marley, Redemption Song
******
The soul becomes dyed with the color of its thoughts.
-- Marcus Aurelius
******
The first rule is to keep an untroubled spirit. The second is to look things in the face and know them for what they are.
-- Marcus Aurelius
******
Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.
-- Plato
******
If the only prayer you ever say is "thank you,"
that would suffice.
-- Meister Eckhart
******
We often take for granted the very things that most deserve our gratitude.
-- Cynthia Ozick
******
To lengthen thy life,
lessen thy meals.
-- Benjamin Franklin
******
Never eat more than you can lift.
-- Miss Piggy
******
It's better to start at night than not at all!
AND
Losing weight is hard; maintaining is hard; pick your hard.
-- www.WeightWatchers.com Vegetarian Board friends
******
Procrastination is, hands down, our favorite form of self-sabotage.
-- Alyce P. Cornyn-Selby
******
******
Read More About VALERIEMAHA (Updated November 27)


Current Status:
VALERIEMAHA :(Cont'd) If there has been such a change in one person, there can be the same change in many. --Mahatma Gandhi
set 23 hours ago


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Profile

Member Since: 6/2/2006

SparkPoints: 50,870

Fitness Minutes: 43,804

My Goals:
~ know joy

~ no judgment

~ love and respect body-mind-spirit

My Program:
GOAL

~ Daily meditation
and pranayama practice

~ Daily gratitudes journaling

~ Exercise at least 10 min./day

~ 20 min. strength training every-other day

Personal Information:
I'm a California native, and I have lived primarily in northern CA/San Francisco Bay Area when not traveling or living out-of-state or internationally.

I currently live near Little Rock, AR. I returned to school to pick up a degree in Spanish, and finished it in Dec, 2013!

I'm a volunteer in a services project for women prisoners. I have also developed various service projects in Ecuador.

I am a Yogic-Buddhist-Sufi-Christian mystic -- heh heh. Swami Satchidananda is my primary teacher.

As a lacto-ovo vegetarian I have eaten a whole organic foods, plant-based diet since 1980. I enjoy cooking delicious food with *attitude.*

Other Information:
I love a good movie (e.g., The Visitor; Iris; The Man Who Sued God; Bella) or read (authors Mary Catherine Bateson and Jill Ker Conway are current favorites). I also read sacred texts and other spiritual books, and Swami Satchidananda, Pema Chodron, and Thich Nhat Hanh are among favorite wisdom writers.

As a wimpy Pisces swimming around in the cosmic ocean with lots of air influence, I don't like books or movies too negative, or intense or horrific. My delicate sensibility is easily thrown off-balance. Really.

Mary Oliver, Naomi Shihab Nye, David Whyte, John O'Donohue, Pablo Neruda and Rumi are favorite poets. And music! From Angelique Kidjo and Amadeus Mozart to Diana Krall and Krishna Das...and a world in-between!

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Member Comments:
FEEDTHEHUNGER
11/27/2014 12:12:44 PM

Great to see you again -- I rejoined SP in July and have been slowly reconnecting with people as I find them or they me. Happy to see your comment today and to be friends again!

Happy day!
Debra



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MTRACHEL
11/22/2014 10:38:48 AM

Hello friend!

Just thinking of you this week, thankful for your presence.
love, Rachel



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JOANNANOW
11/15/2014 12:20:03 AM

Hi I copied something for you from face book about Thich Nhat Hanh but the top of it is blank and I can't change it. I tried to edit the top out but it wont do it. I think you can scroll down and see it. I hope it works for you.



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JOANNANOW
11/15/2014 12:03:38 AM













































Hi Maha I just got the following post on Face Book and I thought that you could appreciate it. Thich Nhat Hanh suffered a brain hemorrhage and is in hospital in critical condition. The following was very touching:

prayers of healing for Thich Nhat Hanh. a beautiful offering by Clarissa Pinkola Estes, below:

One of my favorite human beings, Thich Nhat Hanh, is very ill. Here's a prayer for him by another one of my favorite humans, Clarissa Pinkola Estes: VIGIL for: Thay, Nhat Hanh, also known as Thich Nhat Hanh. Let us Pray Together for all souls in Intensive Care Units this night, and also for dear Thich Nhat Hahn, Buddhist leader of the way of peace, who in his late eighties has suffered a brain hemorrhage and is in hospital--able by most recent reports, to see, and talk, but in critical condition from which it is said at present, he may recover.... Let us pray strength to him, and mending... ... in whichever way each soul sees fit... THE ROSE OF COMPASSION Thay, Nhat Hanh teaches us that many true selves on our Planet are snagged by the grasping bony hands of anger and hatred and despair. Thay, Nhat Hanh teaches us that we do not have freedom when we are in love with the dank instead of reaching for the fresh air, taking in the blue sky, and “the fragrant rose.” Thay, Nhat Hanh teaches us if we do not just speak about, but practice daily compassion because we have put the effort to seeing and understanding others’ suffering-- that it will come to us, the right words, the soft eye-looks, the acts that will help those so caught, to suffer less. Thay, Nhat Hanh teaches us that compassion unlocks the jail door, lets us walk out under the blue sky into the fresh air, and be able to bend to take in the fragrance of the rose. Thay, Nhat Hanh teaches us, One day in compassion lived by the true self, is more than 100 days lived without compassion. Thay, Nhat Hanh tells us to enjoy the freedom of the breath that is ours every minute, to enjoy the freedom of the daily walk under the blue sky, in the fresh air, and to live ever near the rose of Compassion, every day and every day. Blessed Thay, and all others in similar circumstances, may you be touched with love and ultimate wisdom by the doctors and nurses and all who come to minister to you. May your peace you have given others, now gently also cover all your body, your mind, your heart, your spirit, your true self, your very breath. May you have no pain. And for Thay especially, may the sky you love so, be the most healing color of blue wherever you are, the air made fresh from the whirl of the happy and long-lived devas dancing, and that the very beat of your heart be for now, your walking meditation. May the long-rooted roses of the compassionate souls who love you, hold you gently on your course, as you find and know your way. with love, from us all who well know your story as exile from Vietnam, and now in your 88th year, having blessed so many of us with your words and books and songs and calm manner after all the savage war you knew. Not despite the war, your goodness. But because of war, your goodness still. We hold you in vigil prayer, knowing you know your way. In all honor and gratitude, we are breathing with you. As you taught us. For all who are in challenge, and who are coming back or going forward, as is meant, please lean on our prayers. We offer them from the little red filagreed chambers of our hearts with doors flung wide open in love. dr.e http://tinyurl.com/pfx6dcj



Rob Brezsny's Free Will Astrology



One of my favorite human beings, Thich Nhat Hanh, is very ill. Here's a prayer for him by another one of my favorite humans, Clarissa Pinkola Estes:

VIGIL for: Thay, Nhat Hanh, also known as Thich Nhat Hanh.


Let us Pray Together for all souls in Intensive Care Units this night, and also for dear Thich Nhat Hahn, Buddhist leader of the way of peace, who in his late eighties has suffered a brain hemorrhage and is in hospital--able by most recent reports, to see, and talk, but in critical condition from which it is said at present, he may recover....

Let us pray strength to him, and mending...
... in whichever way each soul sees fit...

THE ROSE OF COMPASSION
Thay, Nhat Hanh teaches us
that many true selves
on our Planet
are snagged
by the grasping bony hands
of anger and hatred and despair.

Thay, Nhat Hanh teaches us
that we do not have freedom
when we are in love with the dank
instead of reaching for the fresh air,
taking in the blue sky,
and “the fragrant rose.”

Thay, Nhat Hanh teaches us
if we do not just speak about,
but practice daily compassion
because we have put the effort
to seeing and understanding
others’ suffering--
that it will come to us,
the right words,
the soft eye-looks,
the acts that will help
those so caught, to suffer less.

Thay, Nhat Hanh teaches us
that compassion
unlocks the jail door,
lets us walk out under the blue sky
into the fresh air,
and be able to bend
to take in the fragrance of the rose.

Thay, Nhat Hanh teaches us,
One day in compassion
lived by the true self, is more
than 100 days lived
without compassion.

Thay, Nhat Hanh tells us
to enjoy the freedom
of the breath that is ours
every minute,
to enjoy the freedom
of the daily walk
under the blue sky,
in the fresh air,
and to live ever near
the rose of Compassion,
every day and every day.

Blessed Thay, and all others in similar circumstances, may you be touched with love and ultimate wisdom by the doctors and nurses and all who come to minister to you. May your peace you have given others, now gently also cover all your body, your mind, your heart, your spirit, your true self, your very breath. May you have no pain.
And for Thay especially, may the sky you love so, be the most healing color of blue wherever you are, the air made fresh from the whirl of the happy and long-lived devas dancing, and that the very beat of your heart be for now, your walking meditation. May the long-rooted roses of the compassionate souls who love you, hold you gently on your course, as you find and know your way.

with love, from us all who well know your story as exile from Vietnam, and now in your 88th year, having blessed so many of us with your words and books and songs and calm manner after all the savage war you knew. Not despite the war, your goodness. But because of war, your goodness still. We hold you in vigil prayer, knowing you know your way. In all honor and gratitude, we are breathing with you. As you taught us.

For all who are in challenge, and who are coming back or going forward, as is meant, please lean on our prayers. We offer them from the little red filagreed chambers of our hearts with doors flung wide open in love.


Comment edited on: 11/15/2014 12:16:44 AM

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FRECKS96
11/12/2014 9:00:30 AM

I've been catching up with you through your blogs. What an inspiration you are in the way you follow your dreams. All the best to you in Ecuador. It looks amazing!



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