Thursday, June 9, 2016

Spiritual Evolution

Central Alabama Pride, Inc.

It's Pride week here in Birmingham, Alabama and I find my thoughts turning to a subject dear to my heart. Spirituality.

Often, as youngsters (and some oldsters) struggle with their sexuality, they turn to religion for answers. This door is sometimes slammed so hard in their face that the person simply gives up on their Spiritual Quest and sometimes, even themselves.

Other times, the passive aggressive approach is taken and the person speaking with a forked-tongue is much more subtle and no less vicious in their remarks. "That sure is a nice shirt. It would like GREAT on someone else!". Ah yes, there's a highly evolved spiritual person if even I saw one!

I had the honor of hearing the Dalai Lama speak in person. Even when talking about something bad, he attempted to find solutions and put a positive spin on the issue. He led by example and it was kind. He wasn't afraid to tackle the tough issues and he laughed a lot!

I was reminded of that by a dear friend today. Don't take life so seriously. If they aren't sleeping with you or paying your bills, they don't really matter!

So don't give up folks! There are many paths through life and many people waiting with open arms.

Here's mine: Unitarian Universalist Church of Birmingham

Namaste!

Monday, May 30, 2016

Memorial Day and MY DADDY



This post is a long time in coming. That's my daddy in the picture above. I think he was quite a handsome man! Loyal, BRAVE, Loving. If you knew me, you'd wonder how I turned out so different. I'd suggest you just read my book when it comes out!



In the above picture, my dad, Almon Fuller Adams, is front row, far right. He was a Navigator in World War II. I used to play with his metals and finally lost them. I still have his bombing flight records somewhere but haven't scanned them in YET. They say I favor him and it has remained a mystery to this day if it's accurate (though I soon plan to reveal the truth!).

My dad's mom also served (I'm pretty sure) in war as the Head of Nursing up North somewhere. I don't recall at the moment. Everyone including my sister (who lived with her for a while when my mom went to Florida for a job) said she was a wonderful person. She was also a member of the Eastern Star, the women's branch of the Masons (which I have always wanted to join!). Here's a picture of her:





The picture above is my mom, Margaret aka Marjorie aka Marge Julia Frey (maiden name) Adams and her brother Arthur.



The picture above is my dad and my Great Uncle Ivan Culp whom I am named after. I believe he served in the Coast Guard since that's the branch of service he always wanted me to go into. I wanted to fly like my daddy.



Above is the grave stone of my dad's dad, Almon P. Adams. I never had the privilege of meeting him since he died before I was born.

The following are here for posterity until I take the time to add them to our family tree on Ancestry.com





The following is what little I know of my mom's dad, Arthur Frey. I have yet to determine if he served in the military:



Here's a picture of him:



I don't know my mom's mother's name though I suspect it was Julia since that's my mom's middle name. For completeness, here's a picture of her. I think she is holding my mom and that is her brother, Arthur, standing next to them:



So there's a bit of my family history with an emphasis on military service and support. For what is a Soldier without family and community?

I miss my dad and wish I had had the maturity to have a better relationship with him before he left too soon (I was 19). All four grandparents were also gone before I was even born. I was a "mistake", being born 16 years after my sister.

So I honor all people in saying thank you for your service and I hope however long it takes, that we become a world of LOVE and PEACE and PROSPERITY that becomes a shining example that reaches throughout the Multiverse.

Blessed Be.
Namaste.
Amen.

Wednesday, April 27, 2016

Slave labor OR Why I regret not having kids...


Recently, I have had family members that have children begin to struggle with the "empty nest" syndrome. Having just put in a load of 43 pairs of underwear, I can sympathize!

You see, being a guy with OCD and naturally quite lazy to boot, I wash underwear separately. Twice or not at all. They're the dirtiest so I don't want them in a load with anything else. In fact, so dirty, even a double washing really isn't good enough. So not having a trained child to do my bidding, I am faced with a half-day task of laundry or going to the store to buy another pack of underwear. Now you know why I have 43 pairs of underwear!!!

Of course, it goes beyond cleaning or cooking or mowing. Eventually you expect your love to return to you somehow. That your kids will keep YOU as the focus of their lives knowing good and well they'll be just as self-centered as you were when you spread your wings to fly.

Now I know, some don't fly too well, for whatever reason so if that's you, you have your own blog to write! For this topic, will talk about the ones raised right and able to go out and leave the nest. The ones we're proud of and resent at the same time.

Because now we have the hardest task. Letting go and hoping they do fly high and well, not looking back but forward into the vast future of a long and wonderful life. And we, the elders, are left behind, forgotten and we think, unloved.

We have to find a new path in life, without the responsibility of kids nor much of their attention, their needs, their help, and their love. It's all still there, but mostly focused on their NEW family, not their old.

So kids, take every chance you have to tell your forgotten family you love them. Let them know you still need them and always will. And you "empty nesters", don't worry too much. They do still love and need you even if they forget to reassure you as often as you'd like. They're just busy with the new life you helped prepare them for!

Friday, April 15, 2016

A Coat of Many Colors

One step forward, one step in the mud...

How not to use your words.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QqrQQfsCEgE

Although the video above is a short clip so we don't know how this got started, it seems people are much more likely to frown and spout hateful things for even the simple misunderstanding of who is next in line at an ATM.

Do these same folks, at all other times, smile and say polite "Hello"'s to strangers or is this hate their normal attitude to certain individuals or most everyone they meet? It seems to outwardly display the exact opposite of the principles that people in the South supposedly hold in so high esteem. Or is it okay to act this way 99% of the time as long as you put your hour or two of repentance into the week somehow?



In the above picture (left to right) are Almon Adams (my dad), Marge Adams (my mom), Peter Dinett (Mr. Peter to me), and Emily Dinett (Tete to me).

Mr. Peter and Tete were a couple that were from Grand Isle, LA. and lived in the French Quarter of New Orleans, LA. whom my father had befriended when the ship he worked on had docked in New Orleans. We became very close friends when my parents moved to New Orleans where I was born.

I suppose the terms Cajun could be applied to both Tete and Mr. Peter although it never came up. My father took great pleasure in claiming that Mr. Peter was black and Mr. Peter insisted he wasn't a "nigger". It was very confusing to me to hear them all talk about black people (only in private) in such derogatory ways and then tell me (and show me) that I was to treat everyone equally with kindness and respect.

One day, after one of these arguments, I asked Mr. Peter a question. He turned and gave me his full attention like I was an adult instead of an eight year old kid. Knowing that Mr. Peter was a Christian (often walking to Jackson square to go to church), I asked him "When you get to heaven, will there be a fence separating the blacks from the whites?". He sat back in his chair as if stunned and said, "I never thought about it.". After some thought he finally he said "No, I guess there wouldn't be." so I said "Well then we should treat them the same way while we're down here.".

After that, my dad still tried to tease Mr. Peter but it didn't seem to bother him. He had looked at the world through the eyes of a child and was changed. He seemed to be more at peace with himself and the world. He went back to being the kind man that taught me much about the ways of gardening well and probably a good appreciation for the rich soil found in the many reclaimed areas including his enclosed garden that was once pasture for the old vehicles of the French Quarter (yes, I mean horses).

The point is, I grew up influenced by prejudice and love tempered with the ability to think and choose which path to follow. The dark side is SO easy to slide into but I have also been privileged to experience the immense power of love. I may fall, but when I get back up, I try my best to step back onto the path of LOVE.

Monday, March 21, 2016

Is this a dream?



As part of my spiritual growth, to raise awareness of my surroundings, I was taught to do things to keep from falling into a rut.

Since most of us travel, whether it's from the bed to the bathroom, a job, a store, or a friend (to name a few), we quickly slide into an automatic mode and stop observing things around us because we think we've seen it all before.

A great example of this is when we misplace something. When we finally slow down and begin to really "look" again, we find that something hiding in plain sight as if house elves had kindly returned something we're sure had actually been moved.

This is the brains filtering mechanism which is quite powerful and acts in many ways. It's trying to help us navigate a complex reality but if we let it, it can slowly close down a person's view of the world until nothing new and magical is seen anymore.



Thankfully, there are a variety of ways of opening up the energy centers of our bodies and no longer walking through the world with our eyes wide shut which may be why you've heard the remark that this is all a dream.

One simple way to wake your mind up is to change your routines. Do them in a new order or take a diffent path to the store. Don't let excuses lull you back to sleep. See how long you can raise your awareness. Shake things up and you may wake things up. Things you may not even realize you had or that you had stopped using.

To quote Wikipedia, "... what constitutes a sense is a matter of some debate...", https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sense

As they say, live every moment. There are other things that can help too and you need to be patient and observant to see what works the best for you. There are many things to arouse the senses and many senses to arouse! You don't have to be a mystic to benefit from the many practices out there. You can obtain results without seeing how they work or even understanding why. Just do it! It's time to wake up!!!

Sunday, March 13, 2016

The Root of the Matter



It seems to me that many of the youth nowadays are not taught by their parents such things as right from wrong. Manners, kindness, and love have taken a back seat to a very selfish attitude when interacting with the world. Parents are more concerned with being a friend instead of being a parent. They feel the best way to be liked is to give their children free range, getting everything, doing anything, never being guided or corrected, and not knowing what the word "no" means.

For some it's simply laziness. It takes less effort to have a child than to not have one. After that, it's easier to let it do what it wants without guidance than imposing rules and teaching their children right from wrong. In its place, television has become the new nanny and children more often view it from their selfish center, feeling that if it's on television, that makes it okay to do.

http://www.tickld.com/x/jaw/ryan-reynolds-has-something-to-say-to-parents?utm_source=tickld&utm_medium=facebook&utm_campaign=contentse&utm_content=inf_10_93_2&tse_id=INF_9cc7293f1f79464b86a6401dbf546793


Now we are focused on selecting a leader of our country from so many candidates that seem to represent the selfish nature and bad habits, and because our "nanny", television, shows these cruel role models to us, many think that makes it okay.

We are a leading nation of this world and electing such terrible ideals seems to me to be leading us down a very dark road. I don't understand why a person feels dedicated to vote a certain way just because they feel the same way. Does no one have a moral compass anymore?

Claiming a certain spiritual path and then saying and doing things that are contrary to the goodness of that path fools no one, especially the entity(s) you profess to worship. Even if you don't follow any faith, it should still be obvious what is right and what is wrong.

There really isn't an "us" or "them". We are all in this together and we should focus on the good, trying to raise everyone up instead of the need to push others down in our effort to raise up ourselves. It's not easy to do and many take advantage of any efforts, good or bad, to help people. That doesn't mean we should stop helping.

You usually don't know that the future may bring. It could be very different than your present situation. The more we show love and compassion to those around us, the better even the bad times could be. Let go of the anger and the desire to force everyone to follow your path. Each person is entitled to go their own way. Instead, truly walk the way you say you believe and your good actions can make this world a better place for the present and the future.

Monday, January 4, 2016

Morphine Dreams by Ivan J. Adams copyright 2006-03-02

Morphine Dreams by Ivan J. Adams copyright 2006-03-02

No more money
Time to go!
Such a burden
Don't you know?

It's for the best
They all do say
Insurance covered
The last day.

So take her home
She's happy there.
One last time
To brush her hair.

Say Good-bye
& you'll be all-right....
It's time to go
No need to fight!

Stick a needle
In her arm.
Rest assured
She is not harmed!!!

Quick and quiet
She goes away!
Eyes glaze over
I watch and pray.

Hours pass
and the body slows,
Bit by bit
we both let go.

Breathing stops,
no heart beat found.
My quiet sobs
the only sound.

Right or wrong,
It was her wish.
I say farewell
with my last kiss.