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Forks Over Knives: What Does It Mean For Us?

Do you ever wonder why you try to follow the conventional wisdom of recommended dietary guidelines and your health still declines? The brilliant documentary “Forks Over Knives” and the book “The China Study” provide the answers.

“Forks Over Knives: The Plant-Based Way to Health” has been getting a lot of well-deserved positive press lately. The bottom line: we would all be healthier if we eliminated meat and dairy products from our diets.

The film presents excellent research to support the claim that most, if not all, of the degenerative diseases that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by eliminating animal-based and processed foods from our diets.

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Relationship with water — how to protect it and use it

“Pure water is the world’s first and foremost medicine.” Slovakian proverb

It seems to be an axiom of life that we take for granted those things that are always present. Our bodies are made primarily of water, as is planet earth. Yet how often do we think about our relationship with water? Or how to protect it and use it?

It is universally accepted that there can be no life without water.

It is the first thing we use every morning and the last thing we use each night. It comes to us in the form of lakes, rivers, streams, ponds, springs and sacred rain.

Ancient prophecy told of a time when we would have to buy our drinking water – that time is here. So that indicates to me it is time to stop taking it for granted.

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Hopi Prophecy, the Mayan Calendar and the Weather in 2012

Ancient Hopi prophecy warned of a time of “earth changes” – a great cleansing involving all four elements. The Mayan Calendar also calls this a time of transformation. Might they explain the interesting weather we’re having in 2012?

Is it a scary thing, or part of the natural evolution of the planet and our consciousness? Let’s take a look.

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The History of the U.S. Constitution We Weren’t Taught in School

If you’re like me, I learned in grade school that the U.S. Constitution was based on ancient Greek democracy. Which was nowhere close to the truth. The government of ancient Greece was not a democracy.

My research as to what children are taught today about the origin of our government is also disappointing.

Apparently the Founding Fathers simply created it out of thin air, or were influenced by European governments even though there was no democracy anywhere in Europe at that time.

THE TRUE HISTORY OF THE U.S. CONSTITUTION

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The film classic “Psycho” and the value of clearing the clutter

Ever wonder how the classic Hitchcock thriller “Psycho” is related to clearing the clutter? Probably not, so read on.

If your nerves were on edge while watching “Psycho,” here’s why: every time director Alfred Hitchcock cut to the house on the hill, something was different.

In each shot he would change the location of the door, or the number or placement of windows, or the number of panes in each window.

The shots weren’t held long enough for the viewer to be conscious of what the changes were, only that something was “wrong” with that house. The result? An uneasy feeling throughout the film. That’s why Hitchcock was such a master director.

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How’s your cup? How to learn to be optimistic

Can we learn to be optimistic?

I believe so, and researchers agree.

But it will take some undoing of early programming.

The average fourth grade child has heard the words “no, you can’t do that” over 70,000 times. So we have to work to overcome that negative imprint.

THE RESEARCH

Not only are optimists happier than pessimists, research shows they are healthier, live longer and make more money.

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Stop the presses! Pessimists throughout history proved wrong!

Today I’d like to offer some historical anecdotes about all the times pessimists were wrong. Hopefully it will give you more inspiration to hold onto your dreams in spite of the naysayers:

For starters, remember how absolutely certain people used to be that the earth was flat!

In 1847, Dr. Ignaz Semmelweis was the head of Vienna General Hospital’s First Obstetrical Clinic, which at the time had a mortality rate of 10-35%! When he suggested doctors and mid-wives wash their hands before attending mothers and newborns, he was ridiculed by the medical authorities of the time, and fired by the hospital that employed him. In 1851 he moved to Hungary where his theory was accepted and hand-washing reduced mortality to less than 1%!

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Can pessimism be helpful?

“Don’t ever let somebody tell you that you can’t do something. You got a dream, you got to protect it. When people can’t do something themselves, they want to tell you that you can’t do it. If you want something, go get it. Period.” Will Smith, actor

Can pessimism be helpful?

I think not.

Not that there’s anything wrong with critical thinking and trying to be aware of potential obstacles.

But I’m talking about people who are negative for the sake of being negative. Because they have not succeeded, they don’t want anyone else to succeed either.

AN EYE-OPENING COMMENT

I like to increase my odds of success by being a thorough researcher. So when I was working on The Wind Is My Mother, I took a class on how to get a non-fiction book published and did absolutely everything suggested. It worked.

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Earth Day: Mending the Sacred Hoop

“Everything is part of the Sacred Hoop and everything is related. Our existence is so intertwined that our survival depends upon maintaining a balanced relationship with everything within the Sacred Hoop.” Bear Heart

Earth Day is the perfect day to focus on the Sacred Hoop of All Creation and how to establish a relationship with the natural world around us.

In indigenous cultures, the circle is sacred — when we sit in a circle there is a spirit of oneness and everyone is equal.

The elders teach that the universe is in harmony as long as the Sacred Hoop, the circle of life, is intact.

The Sacred Hoop includes all of life: the four directions (West, North, East and South), the earth, trees, plants, rivers, oceans, two-leggeds, four-leggeds, winged creatures, swimmers (fish) and “creepy crawlers” (insects).

They all bring their own unique contribution to the earth and one another.

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Social activism: the good, the bad and the ugly

“An eye for an eye makes the whole world blind.” Gandhi

I’m a big fan of peaceful social activism. Having marched in the 1970s in opposition to the Vietnam War, I’m proud that my generation helped end it.

We have even more opportunity today, with the advent of online petitions that are getting lots of results, fast.

UGLY SOCIAL ACTIVISM

But there is also un-social activism that causes me concern. I’m thinking specifically of Spike Lee’s ill-advised re-tweet of the supposed address of George Zimmerman, who shot and killed Trayvon Martin.

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A New Take on April Fool’s Day

Traditionally, April 1 is “April Fool’s Day,” an opportunity to play harmless and fun jokes and tricks on others. Frankly, I’ve never been a fan.

Not much is known about the origin of this holiday. One popular origin tale is that when the Gregorian Calendar moved the first day of the year from April 1 to January 1, not everyone got the message, or simply chose to ignore it.

After all, there was no internet then to spread the word. Those who continued to view April 1 as the first day of the year were called “Fools”.

But this story doesn’t hold water because the history of pranking on April 1 started long before the Gregorian Calendar came along in 1582, and it also has traditions around the world.

Another theory is that the timing of a day of pranks is tied to the arrival of spring, when nature “fools” humankind with fickle weather. That explanation makes sense to me, particularly this year.

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Human potential – are you living up to yours?

Are you living up to your full potential?

“Everyone has inside of him a piece of good news. The good news is that you don’t know how great you can be! How much you can love! What you can accomplish! And what your potential is!” Anne Frank

One of my earliest childhood memories is of sitting in my second grade class at Our Lady Help of Christians School in Brooklyn, New York during a lesson on the human body.

During the class, my teacher said something that knocked my socks off! It was that human beings only use 10% of the capacity of their brains [that was wrong; it’s now understood that virtually every part of the brain is active most of the time].

But when I heard that statement, I made a decision right then and there to get to using 100% of my brain power in my life. That declaration led me on a circuitous exploration of personal growth, alternative lifestyles and spiritual paths, much to my parents’ chagrin.

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The 30-day “No Gossip” Challenge!

“Gossip is black magic at its very worst because it is pure poison.”
Don Miguel Ruiz, “The Four Agreements”

Years ago I read an interview with actress Susan Sarandon in which she told a story about her daughter’s 11th birthday slumber party. The girls were full of gossip so Ms. Sarandon suggested the ground rule that they not talk about anyone who wasn’t there.

The astonished reply from one of the little girls was, “Then what are we supposed to talk about?”

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Attitude of Gratitude. Huh??

“If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, “thank you,” that would suffice.” ~ Meister Eckhart.

Most of us know what an “attitude of gratitude” is. But do you know how it can change your life?

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Do you know the “Original Instructions?”

“The thing that is wrong in the world today is that people have forgotten their instructions.” Onondaga Chief Leon Shenandoa in “To Become a Human Being”

And what instructions might those be, you ask? Every indigenous person would know: the instructions passed down from the Creator, the elders, the ancestors, on how to live a life in harmony and balance with the world around them.

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Why New Year’s Resolutions Fail and How To Make Them Succeed

“Without goals, and plans to reach them, you are like a ship that has set sail with no destination.” Fitzhugh Dodson

The concept of making “new year’s resolutions” has become something of a joke in our society for about as long as I can remember — the joke being that people never follow through so the “resolution” will never come to fruition.

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