Maitri Libellule



~ My Mysterious Mondays List ~
The Last One In August, 2009

(And, fyi, the mysteries need not have happened
ON a Monday, we are just designating Mondays
as the day to speak about these awesome, mind-
blowing mysteries, and in the process we might
save the Universe...)


* I have been wondering all manner of strange things this week, which has a lot to do with my current state of body and mind which you can read about over on Maitri's Heart, my other blog that I updated last night. Bear with me because this may go from the ridiculous to the sublime -- well, I'm not sure that it will come close to the sublime, but I'm almost certain some of it will be ridiculous. Let me start with toes.

I am one of those people whose 2nd toe is longer than the big toe. I've been told that that means something but I'll be goshdarned if I can remember what. I mean, really, all of our toes and fingers are different lengths and sizes. Why does that second toe somehow change our fate and the whole tenor of our lives? If this is true I would like someone to write in and tell me why, what this means, and if the meaning is fractured like my feet have been, having had serious surgeries on my feet, then falling down the stairs and shattering them (My doctor's word for it, not mine... He said, "Honey, you didn't just break your feet, you shattered them."). He wasn't just whistlin' Dixie either. I couldn't walk for a year and my left big toe will never bend again, and my feet, like various other parts of me, have turned out cattywompus and lopsided. I'd like to know how the 2nd toe theory is affected with these mysterious things factored in?

* I find it mysterious that places like grocery stores keep the air conditioner low enough to give you frostbite during the 100 degree weather in summer. It's foolishness to have to carry a sweater with you into the grocery store and then as soon as you step outside again your glasses immediately fog up and you run someone down with your cart. It can't be good for anybody to go back and forth between heatstroke to frostbite and back out again into the former. What were they thinking? I think it is a plot to make you do a 180 and have to go back in for cold medicine, but that's just my theory and I haven't found a way to prove it yet.

* I found it extremely mysterious and unseemly when, having grown up in the midwest and then spending over a decade in the Blue Ridge mountains where we actually had 4 seasons, that to drop down only one state it would be so warm at least 9-10 months out of the year that you can get your Christmas tree in shorts. That's just wrong. I'd speak to God about it but I think he has more important things on his mind these days. But while my family in the midwest is snowed and iced in, I have been outside gardening in January in 70 degree weather. Now, I've sort of liked that part, though I'm loathe to admit it, what with the poor family having icicles dripping off their noses while I'm planting seeds, but I've wondered if I were going straight to hell when I talked to them on the phone and they were moaning and depressed because the weather was dreadful, and then they'd ask, "How's your weather there?" I start fidgeting at that point, cross my fingers behind my back and say, ahem, "It's cold here too, brrrrr.... why, they're predicting snow any minute."

I grew up Catholic and I'm sure that must be at least a "venial" sin and I'll spend time in purgatory for it, but not being Catholic anymore and having no one to go to confession to over it, I think I'm doomed. You have to be more forward thinking about these things. It's too late now though. I haven't gone to the Catholic Church since I was 20 and now I'm 55. I think that means I'd be in the confessional for 3 years trying to wipe the slate clean, and be out in a pew afterwards saying "Our Fathers" and "Hail Marys" for the rest of my life to make up for it. I just look heavenward and say, "I'm sorry about everything, even the things I've forgotten, but don't send me to purgatory because I've already been doing a kind of penance for some long time now. I have to go outside in 100 degree weather, when things smell worse than normal, and do 'Poody Duty' for five dogs several times a day, year round, no matter what the weather. Phew. If you don't faint from the heat you will from the smell. That will wipe at least part of the slate clean, won't it?" I'm so confused about these things.

* I find it mysterious that a fairly intelligent woman, such as myself, could have started something called "Mysterious Mondays," and then only the third week in do nothing but bellyaching and moaning not to mention blathering on about the weather, and that's the best I can do. I feel the need to direct you, once again, to the post I wrote last night on my Maitri's Heart blog. I think I have written this in my sleep (again, refer to, you got it, Maitri's Heart.) I'm embarrassed to look so bad at this only three weeks in, but I guess some weeks are more mysterious than others. I'll try harder next week. If I can. If I remember. If I haven't moved to Mars. These days, no one has a clue when they wake up in the morning where they will go to bed that night. Now that's mysterious if you ask me. At least I hope so. Or perhaps no one will notice. That's the ticket. Maybe the readers will be sleeping when they read this too. I think I'll go to sleep now and read with you...

Not so...


Note: If you sign the Linky List below, it is assumed that you will take part every Monday (or close to it) and if you don't you will be removed from the list. This is simply to keep an active group and you are always welcome to come back and sign in again if you can't keep up now. I will not delete you if you miss one Monday. I have been bumped from these sorts of things when I couldn't keep up which has been a lot lately due to family issues. But if you are signing up just to promote your site and it's obvious that you don't have the kind of site that participates in regular original postings and is not here to participate, you will be removed permanently. Thanks for your understanding...

Maitri Libellule


I started to think about Mondays, and how mysterious they always seem to me, and that if I started a "Mysterious Mondays" list others could join in and we could all talk about the strange and mysterious things in the universe. You know, important things, the tiny things in the world we might miss if we don't slow down and stop going at break-neck speed... So I am going to jot off as many mysterious things as I have captured in the net of my imagination and daily life from one Monday to the next. I hope you'll join we who find Monday's mysterious, and the world mysterious, and are seeking the answers to the unanswerable, and all that is magic and wise...

My Mysterious Mondays List...

(And, fyi, the mysteries need not have happened
ON a Monday, we are just designating Mondays
as the day to speak about these awesome, mind-
blowing mysteries, and in the process we might
save the Universe...)


* I have been witnessing miracles this past week. I am coming to life, vital and alive at 55. Very much has changed in my life this year and very much more is going to change in the months ahead. Most of these things are so tender and dear I will hold them very close and protect them under my old, worn shawl from Guatemala, worn softer and softer with time. This shawl is
The shawl is mysterious because when I put it on my world changes. I don't even remember where I got it and in the context of my life it is ancient. When I put it on my pug Sampson who sits with me in my big over-sized chair with the plump, soft arms comes and snuggles into the shawl. He puts his two little paws and face on my shoulder and his puggery face kind of spreads out. I write more, and better with this shawl on. In any case, this shawl is It's a bit tattered now, but I will never get rid of it, and I will never understand why things change when I put on this shawl.



* The last two nights I have been having very alive, sensitive, awake moments under the moon and the stars when I am out with the dogs. On my patio there are tiny frogs everywhere. They look just like the tree frogs that I love so much in the spring, bright green, their three wee little suction cup toes clinging to the outside of the glass on the kitchen windows. I stand mesmerized, washing dishes, and stop with a dripping dish in my hand staring at the tiny frog. For a brief shining moment time stands still and the frog seems to be staring at me as I am at him. Finally, I go back to doing the dishes and every time I look up he is still there, looking in. Perhaps he likes to watch a human do dishes. In any case, I find this Last night was particularly fascinating because when the dogs and I went out for the last time before bed, with the patio light illuminating everything on the white stucco walls, there were three of these tiny frogs and I stared at them for the longest time. These were a kind of brownish grey and I wondered if they were different kind of frogs. I read about them when I came in and if I'm not mistaken what it said was that the color changes as the frog begins to grow and metamorphose into a larger frog. I talked to them and told them that they were beautiful. I had never seen them before these last two nights this year, but we've had a lot of rain of late and the water forms little rivers that stand for a day or two in little gullies, and run-off water stands inside the big concrete tubular supports that go under the road. I wonder if these tadpoles-into-frogs were spawned there? I ran in the house and grabbed my cell phone and used the camera to try to take their picture but no matter how I adjusted the light setting they would not show up. There were just blank pictures. I remembered reading that native people in many tribes and cultures of the world did not like to have their pictures taken because they thought the pictures stole their soul. I wondered if the frogs were protecting their souls when I tried to take their pictures. I turned around and saw a much bigger and very beautiful frog on the glass French doors going into the cottage. I tried to take his picture to to no avail. I came in with the dogs disappointed, but as I believe that there is a reason for everything I thought no more of it. It was the frog's business, not mine after all.

The dogs and I have just come in again from our nightly walk, and there was only one wee frog, so tiny you would have missed him if you blinked. Again, he stared right at me, unafraid, and looked right into my soul. He had a message for me and this time I felt it. I believe in totem animals. The dragonfly has long been mine, but I've felt a new totem coming.

Recently I found a Zuni fetish, a frog, that I had purchased in New Mexico made by a renowned Zuni carver of fetishes some time ago, and brought home. He has lived with my collection of fetishes for many years. I liked him, but he didn't speak to me the way some of the other animals did. But now frogs are coming into my life and I had to know why. My little frog friend hopped off the wall onto the top of the handle of the broom leaning against the wall and then disappeared as the five dogs came trundling in, and I got everyone settled for the night and then looked online to see what I could find out about the frog as totem animal. When I read the information below on this website, my jaw dropped open. Every single word is so true of my present life that I knew I had been given a great gift. The gift is my new totem, friend and guide on the journey ahead. My life is about to undergo such a great transformation that it will be life-changing in a way so huge it is almost inexplicable, something that I have waited for all of my life, and it has been happening since the beginning of the year when I was ordained. I felt it when I married my daughter and son-in-law a week ago Saturday.

And something so extraordinary happened to me just this afternoon I had to call my best friend and tell him right in the middle of the grocery store what had just happened. My new totem is the Pied Piper leading me into my new life just ahead. The frog, as totem, represents Transformation (... not unlike my dragonfly totem which seems to be a theme in my life.). When I saw that I was so startled it took my breath away. That I would find him now, this presence in my life just on the threshold of a whole new life when I will move to a little cottage by the sea to write my books, is just as it should be. Surprising and not surprising at all. Just right. This is what I read...

"The frog is the totem of metamorphosis.
It symbolizes coming into your personal power.
It reminds us not to become bogged down with day-to-day living.

It is the totem of water.
Its voice calls forth the rains.
Emotions are associated with water and
a frog totem may be telling you to get in touch with your feelings.

People with frog medicine give support and energy
where it is needed.
They can cleanse the negativity from an environment."

I found this stunning. I find it
* Finally, just as I was walking out onto the patio with the dogs I saw the most beautiful little spider's web attached to the outer door frame and the patio light. From the inside where the patio light light illuminated the web, the spider's web was luminous, each woven strand shimmered, and at the center was a perfect orb. I am a weaver. I am guided by Grandmother Spiderwoman when I weave. I was always afraid of spiders until I started weaving. Now I feel a kinship with them and a fascination for them. The bright yellow and black Argiope spiders that build their huge webs in the garden in the summer delight me because down the middle of their web it looks like a perfect zipper. I call them Zipper Spiders and I didn't see any this year. I felt sad about it. I so loved to see the eggs and the tiny baby spiders emerge for a brief time before they disappeared. You have witnessed true magic if you get to see this.

There were many minuscule bugs caught in this little spider's web, but no sign of the spider herself who may have run into hiding when the patio light went on and the door opened. I walked out onto the patio with the four pugs and big dog Moe and I tried to see the web from the other side, from behind the light. Looking into the light I saw nothing. I could only see the web when I looked out into the darkness. The dark of night is where the most

things happen. I love the deep dark velvet night.

There is mystery and magic all around if only we have eyes to see. Join us here and share your thoughts and experiences on our Mysterious Mondays thread. Let's enjoy the magic together...




Note: If you sign the Linky List below, it is assumed that you will take part every Monday (or close to it) and if you don't you will be removed from the list. This is simply to keep an active group and you are always welcome to come back and sign in again if you can't keep up now. I will not delete you if you miss one Monday. I have been bumped from these sorts of things when I couldn't keep up which has been a lot lately due to family issues. But if you are signing up just to promote your site and it's obvious that you don't have the kind of site that participates in regular original postings and is not here to participate, you will be removed permanently. Thanks for your understanding...

Maitri Libellule
Grampy Spreads The Love...



WEEKEND LINKY LOVE


One of the things that just blows me away is what the blogging community has come to mean in my life. I came to blogging just to open my heart and share and hope to meet a few like-minded people. I now know people all of the world, have made wonderful and dear friends that I feel as if I've known all of my life, and sometimes, more often than you can imagine, you come across a precious soul whose whole blog just makes you GLOW... Such is Grampy's blog, and you can click on his graphic link above to visit his site.

This morning I was visiting his site and saw that he had a new "Mr. Linky" list set up for "Weekend Linky Love" and I loved the idea. Weekends are more laid back for me and I have more time to write and just Breathe... I am going to update both blogs and add a number of things to them both, expanding favorite links and blogs, and you can bet Grampy will be one of them!

This weekend, even as I type, everything outside in the garden is being dug up and potted, everything that can that is, weeded, cleaned up, and pine straw put down so the owner after me will have a fresh slate. I will be moving soon to a little coastal community where everything is in walking distance and I'm looking at little cottages now. It will be a whole new start for me.

It's hard to imagine that this time last week I was both mother-of-the-bride and minister as my sweet daughter and her longtime love Jeremy got married on the beach at sunrise. It was simple, beautiful, and there wasn't a dry eye in the place except mine (try staying composed when it's your daughter you're marrying and tears are running down her cheeks through the whole ceremony... sigh...). I will never forget that morning as long as I live. It was moving and beautiful and so full of love words don't do it justice...





It is a very emotional time because just as my daughter was marrying the love of her life, and they the parents of my precious grandson Lucas, my dear mother, 83, who has battled Multiple Myeloma for over 4 1/2 years, a terrible form of cancer, is now in her final days. It has been a long, drawn out battle and she has outlived every prediction and expectation, but now the end is coming very close. We didn't know even as days grew close to the wedding if they might also be my mother's final days, and it was like two worlds colliding, very, very difficult.

Once the wedding was over and the newlyweds off on their honeymoon, I picked up a rescue pug puppy. Oh my gracious she would absolutely break your heart. She had been left in a closed car in the heat, was almost dead, had had a heat stroke and a fever of 109 degrees when she was rescued and taken to the Humane Society where the amazing vet saved her. She is precious beyond belief and I had her until last night. She is such a bright, joyful spirit and loveable and kissing all the time, I fell madly in love. I knew she'd only be with me for a short time before the rescue worker came to get her, but I fell so in love I wanted badly to keep her and cried like a baby for hours after she left last night. I think that there has just been so much emotion, every kind imaginable, and she filled something in me and gave me joy when I needed it most. I know that it was right for her to go and she will be a precious angel of a girl for her new adoptive family when she is adopted out, but I will never forget that precious girl, and she will always live on in my heart. Here's a picture of Chloe asleep snuggled into my neck after we had had a great big lovefest. Quality is not great because I took it with my cellphone, the only thing I could reach without waking her, but I love it anyway!




Mother Maitri & Chloe...


Everything happens for a reason, even if we can't see it at the time. Even though I badly wanted to keep Chloe, I had a growing sadness and realization that a bouncing highly energetic pug baby was not what we needed in a land full of seniors (including me!), that the other dogs wouldn't get the attention and love they needed and deserved if I was always chasing after a puppy bounding through the air (She popped off 2 laptop keys, chewed all manner of things up, and nearly licked your face off every time she came near you. A sweeter bundle of love I have never seen, but WHOO, I didn't have that much energy when I was a kid!).

So things settled down and I kind of went from soft sobs to burying my nose in my soft puggy boy's fur, Sam my sweet man that is my velcro pug, and already the stillness set in and I relaxed. I will never, however, forget Chloe, and I will never stop loving her.

I just looked outside and nearly fell over on my head. A lush garden is GONE and flat pine-straw covered ground. It hasn't looked like that since I moved in here 7 1/2 years ago, but everything changes, nothing stays the same, and I am on my way to a whole new life.

And gee, it's only a little after 2 Saturday afternoon. Who knows what the rest of the weekend will bring?

Hugs to one and all. Have a beautiful weekend, especially you Grampy!





Maitri Libellule



Having now joined in on Random Tuesdays, which I love and will be doing tomorrow, I started to think about Mondays, and how mysterious they always seem to me, and that if I started a "Mysterious Mondays" list others could join in and we could all talk about the strange and mysterious things in the universe. You know, important things, like what ever happened to those paper straws they had when I was little (I'm 55, if you're too young to remember these you needn't go and get nasty, just go, as my dear friend would say, "There, there, pat, pat...." and forgive us poor doddering old fools our childhood memories...) that were flavored, and when you used them to drink a glass of milk it would make them taste like, say, strawberries? I don't remember what they were called, but it was certainly in the era of penny candy in the big glass counters in the old mom and pop stores. Sigh... Now there was magic for you.

So I am going to jot off as many mysterious things as my brain can handle right now (... which might not be many, as I just married, literally -- I was the mother of the bride and the minister performing the ceremony at sunrise on Saturday -- my daughter Rachel and her beloved Jeremy, and I think I still have sand in my ears and in my drawers.) and I hope you will do it on your blog as well and refer folks to this page to sign up and use the logo at the top of this post on yours on Mondays that should be linked back to this blog. I will be checking so if you mysteriously disappear from this list, it will be because you're not playing along. You can't play jump rope without someone holding each end!


My First Mysterious Mondays List...

(And, fyi, the mystery need not have happened
ON a Monday, we are just designating Mondays
as the day to speak about these awesome, mind-
blowing mysteries, and in the process we might
save the Universe... C'mon, don't leave me
standing out here alone with my 8-Ball all
alone!)



* Did you play the ouija board as a child? Do you now? Did you believe in it? Don't you find it fascinating that people who scoff at the ouija board will hand all of their money over to stockbrokers, their whole life savings, and let them take a chance with it? I'd sooner consult a ouija board...

* One of the most mysterious things to me as I get older are these peculiar little things that might pop up anywhere and certainly will SOMEwhere called "Skin Tags." Isn't that a very bizarre kind of thing to be sprouting? And stranger still is that my pugs have more than I do and I've never seen them on other dogs. I think this is very mysterious.

* I find it fascinatingly mysterious that the plants you spend a fortune on and tend with loving care and cluck over like a mother hen over her baby chick, die on you every time, while the 50 cent African violets (at least for me) that have gotten kind of ratty looking and have no flowers, I hoard and bring home and clean up and repot and feed and then every now and again when I remember I water them, and they get ENORMOUS and shock people who say that they think African Violets are the hardest thing to grow. This is almost always because they over-water. Benign neglect works very well on a great many things and the older I get I'm treating most things this way.

* I find the Dollar Store (or whatever it's called where you are) one of the most fascinating, mysterious places on the planet. I buy my hair color there for $3 and it's a name brand I can then go in the drugstore and pay $9 for. If the $ store can afford to sell it for $3 and still make money, why $9 at the drugstore? Likely right about now you are wondering if there has ever been a more inane, boring person on the planet, but then one of the great thrills of my pregnancy was that my innie (belly button) turned into an outie at full term, and the amazing stuff that I could clean out that I didn't know was even in there startled and delighted me no end.

I'm an easy person to amuse, everything delights me, I find everything mysterious, and if I end up playing this game alone that's okay too because I play well alone, and I even find that mysterious...

Maitri, on the prowl for other mysterious matters... I think I shall keep a "Great Mysteries of the Universe," notebook... That's the ticket. C'mon out and play!




Maitri Libellule
randomtuesday


Dear Ones,

I have just joined "Random Tuesday Thoughts" and I think this is a wonderful idea. It will prod me to post on Tuesdays which should then prod me on to other days. You see, my life lately has been cattywompus and lopsided (which is how I describe myself after having "come down with" Bell's Palsy in 1995, having the worst case that three doctors had seen (Oh Joy!), and still only smiling on one side and having an eye that droops on one side, leaving the person talking to me kind of standing on their head to see me alright. (The first thing I taught my little grandson to say when he was somewhere between 2 and 3 is "Grandma is lopsided and cattywompus." I don't know why his parents weren't amused. I'm one of those funny grandmas.



(Naked)


Now, you see, I'm new to this and apparently you are supposed to have a "theme of the week" and this one's got something to do with being naked. As I am rather shy and startle myself when I get out of the shower and look at myself in the mirror, I'll just insert the word now and again so as not to stray too far and get kicked out my first week. Sigh ... (Naked)

Actually all the animals around here are always what you'd call naked, as I don't even dress up the pugs like some do, and when two of them got groomed last Friday they sent them home in snappy little scarves which I immediately took off because the pugs were blushing they were so embarrassed. I mean really. Give the boys a break. So I cut the sailor-ish looking scarves off but all the other nine animals (6 parrots, 5 dogs) laughed uproariously in an unseemly manner much to Sampson and Harvey's dismay, and they went slinking around in funny noses and glasses so as not to be recognized. It didn't work very well because now they were, you guessed it....


(Naked)


Then there's the matter of my kitchen counter. I am a lousy housekeeper as I believe I've said before. Taking care of 11 rescue animals, being a Minister-Writer-Artist, spending most of my day writing and answering calls, getting the dogs in and out 150 or so times a day (And doing "Poody-Duty" afterwards which takes awhile with 5 little poopers (That's almost Naked talk, I think...) does take awhile. In my little cottage the kitchen counter opens up into the living room and has longsince become a receptable for most anything I don't know what to do with which is, sigh, sadly pretty well everything I own. A poor dear soul came in to clean my little cottage today because the whole family and then some are coming in this week for my daughter's wedding. When she got finished and left I just sat here gawking. I felt a little frightened. After all, the kitchen counter was now -- say it with me -- Naked. It can startle a soul half to death to have a place so clean when most people who know you call you "The Absent Minded Professor" and at least in disarray you can at least find things (... if you are muddle-brained, cattywompus and lopsided especially...). I, however, don't mind if I never find anything again, because it looks so neat and clean that I just want to sit here and gawk like the Queen of England were coming for tea, and I can pretty much be sure that she wouldn't be Naked.

Add to all of this, this Saturday, the 15th, at sunrise on the beach, I am not just the mother-of-the-bride, but the minister officiating at the ceremony. I'm pretty sure a minister is not supposed to show up Naked, but I'm afraid I'll be so nervous at 5 a.m. when I have to get up and it is usually just about the time I'm going to bed, that I'll run out the door all rattled, and be.... Naked. I think I should put billboards up all around town with my phone number on them and have everyone in town call me at 4:30 a.m. and say, "Reverend Mother, don't forget to put your clothes on." I shudder to think about it.

I'm afraid I'd better stop here. All of a sudden I'm getting the urge to throw off all of my clothes and run around the neighborhood stark Naked, and I'm fairly certain that's an unseemly thing for a minister or anybody to do, so I'm going to sit here holding my clothes on with a death grip so as not to go crazy running in the streets, clothes strewn all over the living room floor. Perhaps if I wore my Flamingo Hat it would startle everyone that saw me enough that they wouldn't look at my 55 year old body dancing and twirling about buck Nekkid (I think that counts too?)



I actually have this hat and
have worn it, much to the
shock and dismay of my
neighbors, as I went out to
get the mail. A minister in
a flamingo hat walking 4
pugs, I imagine, is quite a
sight...

Wish me luck...

Reverend Mother (Completely Clothed) Maitri

Maitri Libellule


We, the Council of Wisdom, affirm
• the spiritual essence of being and the magnificence of creation;
• the discoveries of science and the ongoing revelation of truth and wisdom through numerous individuals, institutions, works of art and literature, and systems of belief and religious practice;
• the inherent worth and dignity of every person regardless of race, creed, gender, economic condition or other distinctions;
• and our shared responsibility as members of the interdependent web of existence.
We
• renounce hatred and violence;
• support unprejudiced, empathetic dialogue leading to intelligent, humane, environmentally sound solutions to conflicts and problems in our world;
• and together reach toward a vision of global communion in peace and prosperity for all.




Mission Statement for The Council of Wisdom


I have been doing extensive research in my studies for building my ministry, and some weeks ago, I came upon The Council of Wisdom online. I applied to be a member and today found out that I was approved. Their goals are so in line with my own, I knew that being a part of their movement would help me help others, as my mission is global as well as local, it includes every race, creed, gender, sexual orientation and spiritual path around the world, as well as person to person, hand to hand, heart to heart. As I often write, Each one, reach one. Being part of the council will help me achieve my goals.

Two weeks from today I will be performing the wedding ceremony for my daughter and her beloved. At the same time I work online on the website, blog, and many facets of The Maitri Ministry. I will be working every day toward my goals, as I tend to my 5 dogs, 6 parrots, the garden, my studies, meditation, prayer, work in animal rescue, and tend the larger garden of the world. Every shape, color, and size. I extend my arms from an open heart to everyone I meet. As I've said, the world is my congregation, whether I speak to you for a few moments, counsel you for a period of time, or know you for the rest of my life, you will be precious to me. This is sincere and comes from the deepest part of me. This is my path for the rest of my life.

Performing my daughter's wedding ceremony is such a joyful thing that it has spurred me on to want to do more weddings. This includes alternative ceremonies of every type as well as those of gay men and women, or commitment ceremonies where it is not yet legal. All deserve the covenant of marriage, those who love and have a commitment to one another should have legal rights as well as the rights inherent in love and committing to a lifetime together. Those who belong to a church have a place and a manner in which to celebrate their marriages, and I celebrate with them. Those outside of the scope of organized religion need also have their union sanctified and recognized, and I shall be a minister who does just that. I am to unite the world in every possible way.

It is said that "United we stand, divided we fall." Never has that been more important than it is today. I dwell in unity, not derisiveness. In this fractured society I hope, in my own small way, to work toward wholeness, hope, compassion, love, and kindness. I believe that I can achieve my goals, for I shall join forces with the ranks of many others who are working toward just this in their own way. I am a minister of many colors, every color of the rainbow, not just one or two. I love, I give love, and, human, I seek love. You cannot move forward into helping another if you have not love for yourself. This, too, is part of the teaching of maitri.

I encourage you to visit The Council of Wisdom website. It is amazing. There is much to learn there, and, if you are open, it will help you grow and expand your thinking. All I ask, all I pray for, are open minds and an open heart. The rest will take care of itself.

With gentle love, with tenderness, with hope, and joy...