The Importance of Forgiveness

August clearly has to be for many, a favorite month. “Summertime, and the Living is Easy,” as the song goes. A good time to unwind and enjoy life a bit more, feel young again while enjoying all those summer activities we did as children, back then perhaps with our loved ones who have since made their transition.

I know our DPs have a hand in showing us the beauty of Nature. Maybe you came from a family of fisher-people, sharing meals over a campfire under the sky, eating the fish that your mom just caught with lures your grandfather had made. Or perhaps your uncle was an avid bird watcher, and could whistle their sounds, and caw like a crow.

I might also remind some of you who say you’re city people, Teddy Roosevelt was raised in NYC. When he became sick, his father took him to the Adirondacks which is where he learned his love of Nature. The result is well . . . without saying, you should check out the amount of land he protected which led to the creation of the National Park, amazing for a so-called New York City boy! I would encourage anyone with “i-Generation” children (Hey! Did I just coin that term?) to encourage them to put down their i-everything’s (iPhone, iPad, etc.), and let them experience an incredible day or week in Nature – a wonderful way to experience or recapture the magic of youth.

I would also suggest that you never forget your childhood and mature dreams and visions. You have them for a reason, and part of the mystery is to figure out that reason.

One way I have found to connect to those dreams and visions is to take a walk through the woods, or ride in a quiet canoe or sailboat, or just gaze at the stars or a beautiful sunset. Of course, all oceans, lakes, and ponds are also part of Nature, and all so beautiful – unless of course the polluters have ruined things. But thank heavens for the environmental movement of which Teddy Roosevelt would be proud. We should all seek to preserve Mother Nature’s majesty and beauty. I have always believed, as many others do, that Nature is God’s true church and temple. Connect with Nature and you will be empowered, for Nature’s essence is empowering. I know with so many of you that I may be preaching to the choir, but it is worth remembering and reflecting on the fact that the Earth feeds and houses us, and provides much joy in our lives-we should never take that for granted. Rather . . . love, cherish and honor the Mother who provides so much for all of us.

On another subject, I wanted to personally share something that I recently experienced, involving the passing of one of my friends whom I’d known for forty years. Sometimes, during a session of mine, someone who has lost a loved one will quite literally yell at them for not taking care of themselves, and therefor allowing himself or herself to die before their time. Yes, people sometimes do get angry when a loved one passes. With my friend, I couldn’t believe how some folks sat in judgment of her decisions and actions that may indeed have contributed to her passing, but honestly who knows?

My friend’s soul of course knows her path but who else should be there to judge, or more accurately, condemn? As they say, “Those who live in glass houses shouldn’t throw stones.” Or, to put it another way, “You can’t really understand another person’s experience until you’ve walked a mile in their shoes.” Or, as Jesus himself said, “Let he who is without sin throw the first stone,” and “Judge not, lest you be judged!”

In any case, I must say it really threw me to witness all the anger and resentment because my friend was to me an amazing woman. One of the most independent and talented people you’d ever want to meet. Always up . . . maybe a bit too much for some folks, and yes, a Peter Pan aspect as well. But all in all, a good soul. She gave of herself to many, me included, sometimes with others to her detriment financially. However, the generosity she showed was rewarded at the end when so many people gave back to her when she got sick. When her time came, she didn’t burden anyone with her illness, said she was going to heaven, went to sleep, and passed peacefully.

It is so easy to sit in judgment of someone else’s life, decisions, or actions. We all do it now and again, whether we realize it or not, every time we say something like, “What in the world was he thinking?” But negative things happen in life, and like the old fashioned photographs, we develop from the negative.

Trust me, no deed or action or even thought goes unnoticed by Spirit. Of course it’s not easy for us to not be judgmental, myself included, but it’s important to try and minimize that tendency and especially to avoid condemnation of the person. Easier said than done but we should all try to be conscious of all walks of life, and to be caring even if it’s just with a smile.

And never forget that energy or Love does radiate and does make a difference. So, be as loving as you can.

On that note . . . think summer! Fun! And being free of whatever holds you back from having fun. Enjoy life in this glorious month of August. Remember God loves you when you work, but really loves you when you know how to play!

Take A Hike!

As I was preparing for my Omega Workshop this summer, I’ve been reminded of how many of our loved ones now in Spirit had a hand in showing us the beauty of Nature. As I discuss in my book “Medium’s Cookbook: Recipes for the Soul,” communing with Nature comes so easily if there was someone in your family who loved Nature and showed you the way.  Perhaps you came from a family that loved to fish.  If so, you may have sat under the magnificent summer sky sharing campfire meals of trout that your mom caught using lures that your grandfather had made. Or perhaps your uncle was an avid bird watcher who could whistle like a sparrow or caw like a crow.  If so, you know what I’m talking about.  If not, I hope you get the idea!

We are indebted to Teddy Roosevelt and all the others who had the dream and vision to create the National Parks.  (Pay attention to your dreams and visions…you have them for a reason.)  As a result, Yellowstone National Park so often prompts the comment, “This is God’s country!”  Indeed, Nature is God’s own “house of worship.” To be sure, the very essence of Nature can be so empowering.  I have no doubt that’s why “Omega”—the popular spirituality retreat in upstate New York—is set in the peaceful countryside, surrounded by farms, gardens, and open space.

I might also remind those of you who describe yourselves as “city people” that Teddy Roosevelt was raised in New York City, and was so very sickly that his father took him to the Adirondacks every summer.  That is where Teddy learned his love of Nature, and what led him to protect so much of the land as National Preserves.  So I would suggest that you self-described city boys and girls take a little trip to the country if you can.  Even you will be amazed and most impressed!  If you are “stuck” in the city and can’t get away, at least try to experience Nature in the form of the many wonderful gardens, trees, bird sanctuaries, etc. in your area.  No doubt you are aware that one of the greatest city parks in the word is located in midtown Manhattan—Central Park!

Wherever you can find Nature, go for it!  Nature can reconnect us to our deeper selves while reminding us of the essence of that “Love/God” energy that is everywhere.

I’m no biblical scholar but I know that “To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under Heaven.”  This message from Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 was converted into the song “Turn, Turn, Turn” by Pete Seeger and made famous by The Byrds.  The theme connects us to Nature, and its cycles of birth, death, and rebirth.  It’s all part of the process which guarantees that in some future season, we ourselves will be reconnecting in Spirit with loved ones who have passed before. But meanwhile…It’s summer!  Rock on!