November 2016

Welcome to the November 2016 issue of Horizons Magazine


It’s hard sometimes to recognize when your prayers are being answered, isn’t it? That’s because we’re being answered in ways we didn’t expect. Lotsa folks saying they want to shake up their life, they want a new beginning, to just wake up and have it be a new day, to be able to start fresh. They seek a new perspective or a spiritual reboot. It seems Hurricane Matthew has been a great catalyst for both this week for some of us. Shaken out of our habitual routine by having no power, by having no wi-fi, no internet access, no running water, by water and gas not being readily available — and not knowing when we’d get it restored — we are forced to look at who we are without the overlays we’ve grown comfortable with. If we take these as the soul lessons they are and contemplate the thoughts that arise in the silence, we will be guided to thoughts and ideas that will allow us to lead happier lives and answer all our internal questions.

storm-changes-youHURRICANE MATTHEW came in at lower winds than predicted so our area got off easy. An oak came down in my east garden and a young pine branch snapped, falling on my power line and pulling the meter box off the wall. It would be 4 days before power was restored. During that time I chose to rough it at home with no power rather than hang at a the home of a friend a block away who had power. While power was down for 4 days, I ran a 100 feet orange extension cord run from my neighbor’s home to mine. It was attached to a power strip where I hooked up a fan, a lamp, a phone charger. When I was in the living room, I had the cord in there. When I went into my bedroom, I unhooked the fan and the lamp and hauled the giant cord with me to the other end of the house. When I woke up and went into my office, I picked the big cord up and I carried it all in there.

Being in charge of carrying the power around with me was kind of exhausting. The metaphor was not lost on me. Since I’d been doing a lot of yard clean-up and raking post-hurricane, I was aware of how heavy the power cord felt because my arms were kind of tired. But I didn’t have a choice if I wanted power in each room as I went about my day and night. I reflected that though sometimes I got tired of “hauling the power around” with me — not just with electricity just now but in my life in general as well. It beat the alternative of having no power at all. So when you’re feeling worn out and worn down from having to be the one responsible for the power in your life in every single moment, remember what an honor and blessing it is to have access to it at all.

you-will-have-bad-timesBeing on a well and pump, when my power goes out, so does my water. I had the use of a friend’s shower but chose to rough it and shower at home using pitchers of water poured from a 5 gallon water bottle I keep in the bathroom during power outages. To flush toilets I manually fill the tank, and to shower I stand in the tub pouring pitchers of cool water over me. It reminded me of camping. When I get too comfortable, I go camping. Hurricane Matthew gave me a chance to camp out at home. For the next time, I just ordered a Coleman 5-Gallon Solar Shower that I can just hang on the wall. I can also hang it outside — I have a very private, wooded yard — and it will keep the water warm as well. The evenings were cool, temperatures had dropped about 10 degrees after the storm so nights were mild, in the mid 70’s. Days were spent hauling fallen tree debris to the street and moving fences back into place, clearing more debris, and more debris.

Healing comes when we keep energy in motion

After the storm, I saw on Facebook that my spiritual brother Tod McNeal had offered chainsawing of downed trees in his area. My first thought was to yell at him because he has a severe cut injury on one hand that was just repaired last month. He should be resting it for 6 weeks while it heals, not doing heavy duty work with it. And then I remembered that I was buying into the illusion. Strength and healing comes when we keep energy in motion. No matter what limited resources you have, no matter what little bit of strength you have left in your body, if you use it to help someone in need, that can only be healing to mind, body and soul, despite any appearance in the temporary. Tod is a generous and gracious gentleman who always, and I mean always, goes out of his way to help those in need. May he always be blessed with those who appreciate him and show him love in return.


After 4 days with no power or water, on October 11th I woke up to 4 big handsome men stomping through my east garden. Which I could now see since the oak that had come down and been chainsawed away the day before. I heard big truck engines and got excited, then I heard crunching of work boots right outside. They were there to restore my power and rehang the power cable that a pine branch brought down during the storm. It pulled my box off the wall as well. Grand Electric came out and upgraded my meter box and riser, which I’d been meaning to do anyway. When I saw the damaged box, my spidey sense said $800 and I was only off by $3.50. An hour later, power was on, wi-fi was on and the water heater was heating up. I took a lap through the house checking all light switches. I flipped all breaker switches and reset all GFI and everything worked. I had to replace the small bulbs in my salt lamps, but they were the only ones blown.

Since I now had power and water, the focus turned from outside yard clean up to getting everything inside back to order since I had 1 week to get this November Horizons to the printer. I moved office equipment from the closet back into the office and hooked everything back up. I had wi-fi, I was in business! It only took about 20 minutes to clean the freezer because before the storm I’d packaged everything in grocery bags to easily lift out and discard if I needed to. I needed to. It was only a few Lean Cuisine meals, one chicken breast and 4 packages of frozen vegetables. The fridge was the same. I’d put perishables together in a grocery bag for easy clean up. There wasn’t much. I like my food supply to get way down and it was way down. I lost maybe $20 worth of food, total. I noticed that most of what I use my fridge for is as a pantry for my Asian spices and condiments, mustards, vinegars, pickled stuff as well as the bulk seeds (fennel, cumin, basil, tarragon) that I buy. Also things like bread crumbs, protein powders, molasses, go in the fridge. The freezer I use to store most of my leaves, grasses, roots, seeds and sticks: rosemary, lemongrass, ginger. cinnamon, mustard seed as well as my coffees and herbal teas.

I felt pumped that my power was back on! I enjoyed the few days roughing it but a huge weight of relief dropped as soon as they threw the switch. I ran the dishwasher and although the outside air was nice and cool, I ran the a/c to dry out the house. I ran over to my rental — a virtually unscathed-after-the-storm mobile home — and repaired a screen in the porch, the only real damage. I also stuck another few screws in the panel over the water heater. Then I came home to a hot shower and washed my hair. Ahhh! There was nothing that couldn’t wait and no more utility guys to wait for, so I got to crash. I awoke to find the 3-days-after-a-workout muscle soreness was setting in but I didn’t care. It felt good to have spent time rushing around, being unexpectedly active, using muscles I’d not used in awhile. Times like this show me that even when I think I’m getting lazy, I can just get up and get done what needs to be done.


A Facebook friend asked why a particular country might have continued hardship over and over weather wise and asked if it might have to do with soul contracts and the pre-planning we do in between lifetimes. That’s a good question I’ve been asked before. Soul contracts and pre-planning before each birth certainly are factors but it is so much more than that. When we realize that the physical form dies over and over while the essential self or Soul lives on, it becomes less heart-wrenching when one physical form leaves because we know it will be reborn and we will continue to know them and be part of their soul group again. Of course most people not only don’t believe that, they’ve probably never heard the idea so it sounds weird.

hamster-wheelAlso factoring into it is, you ask why does any country or person for that matter who experiences hardship why does it happen again and again and again? It’s kind of like if you’re on a hamster wheel, if all you see is the next step on the wheel and you cannot envision a future any different than what you experience right now, there’s not much chance of escaping the path you’re on right now.

It all boils down to choice of focus of attention. But what if you live in a remote 3d world village and all you see are the same 13 family members every day of your life? You may not know you have other choices available to you. You literally see the same thing day in and day out. No wonder you think that is the only way your life can be.

Why then do some get out and not others?

When we stop to reflect on life around us and begin to wonder or ask internally “why,” that query activates our internal guidance system which brings new thoughts and ideas into our conscious awareness. Having a question you want answered attracts into your experience some one or some thing to respond.

In Haiti, for instance, often devastated by hurricanes, it’s too easy to say “Oh, the answer is you know where the storms are, so move away from there.” It’s often generations of families all living together in the only place they’ve ever known. Where are they all going to go and how will they all support themselves when they get there? But all that can change when one restless and curious kid has the thought “there has to be another way to live.” When someone internally has that thought and begins asking around, they will attract answers out of people who did not know they had answers. They will attract info out of strangers and through symbolism. There may be some lost hiker wander through their remote village and give them a glimpse of a different kind of life, maybe thru photos. More internal questioning attracts more answers. “How can I live there? How can we all live elsewhere, out of danger?” It can be as easy as having one person ask that and another get an agency involved who can help. But they have to be asking for it. If they are not asking, they may not attract it.

Faced with inevitable change, the choice is yours.
You can fight until you’re spent or you can
release all resistance and create something
new in your changed world.

It’s the path of least resistance to have the same type things happen if you are looking at the same things around you everyday and thinking the same thoughts about the same things you are seeing every day. You have to begin practicing having a different thought before you can begin having a new experience. That is why it is so important to pay attention to what thoughts you plant in someone else’s head. Like tv weatherman scaring folks about the approaching hurricane, saying, “If this storm moves 20 miles to the west, you are dead. All of you.” His uneducated opinion, and not true. But he said it on tv so people got panicked. The thoughts we plant in people’s minds helps direct what their future experience will be. Like gravity, it works whether you believe it or not. People who are hopeful of a good outcome are far more likely to have one. People who are running scared willy-nilly not taking responsibility for their own safety are likely to have a far different outcome.

Storms are good because they shake us up, they interrupt our habits, they yank us out of our rut and show us things we may not have known we are capable of.

Enjoy our offering this month.
Hari Om.