Archive for Mithras

The Poverty of the West

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My words for meditation today:

“He awoke each morning with the desire to do right, to be a good and meaningful person, to be, as simple as it sounded and as impossible as it actually was, happy. And during the course of each day his heart would descend from his chest into his stomach. By early afternoon he was overcome by the feeling that nothing was right, or nothing was right for him, and by the desire to be alone. By evening he was fulfilled: alone in the magnitude of his grief, alone in his aimless guilt, alone even in his loneliness. I am not sad, he would repeat to himself over and over, I am not sad. As if he might one day convince himself. Or fool himself. Or convince others–the only thing worse than being sad is for others to know that you are sad. I am not sad. I am not sad.”

– Jonathan Safran Foer (Everything Is Illuminated)

~~~

“The greatest disease in the West today is not TB or leprosy; it is being unwanted, unloved, and uncared for. We can cure physical diseases with medicine, but the only cure for loneliness, despair, and hopelessness is love. There are many in the world who are dying for a piece of bread but there are many more dying for a little love. The poverty in the West is a different kind of poverty — it is not only a poverty of loneliness but also of spirituality. There’s a hunger for love, as there is a hunger for God.”

– Mother Theresa

~~~

Religion4All is an idea: that every human being (no matter their race, religion, sexuality, social status, lifestyle, or any other possible factor) is LOVED by God; just … as … they are.

We all are loved by God, and NO religion or person has a monopoly on it. Every single person on this planet is loved equally by God … SO many are cut off from God because they are told they don’t belong. God loves everyone … we ALL are beautiful creations … we don’t need to cringe when we hear the words “God”, or “religion”, or their judgments … God LOVES us all!

There is no requirement to change in order to be LOVED by God, or to LOVE God. God is LOVE, and LOVE is God … period. There is no one who God loves more than anyone else … there are only those who choose to LOVE more … to love God more, and consequently then to love each other more. In doing so, we grow closer to God … and know God.

By opening our hearts, and minds to God (free of boundaries like religion, or social trends); by LOVING God … we are exactly where we are meant to be. If we maintain that openness, never allowing any person or event to make us close our hearts, we will be guided by God to be who we are meant to be.

In that space of openness we can then live a life of LOVE, and be guided to where we are meant to be … forever in LOVE.

Southern California, Northern California,Mission ViejoIrvineLos AngelesSan FranciscoMarinSan JoseSan Juan CapistranoSanta AnaPalm SpringsLong Beach

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The Tortured Self – A Vision

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I had a vision today. These visions have happened to/for me since I was 20 … I never know when they are going to happen and I cannot make them happen at will. I can however put myself into a state where I am more open to seeing them … this often happens for me through meditation.

Today, however, I was not meditating. I was on a teleconference with a dozen or so other people, discussing topics around self awareness, personal development and duality.

– Flash back a couple of weeks ago –

I had a vision while focusing on my first chakra in a prolonged meditation session. I was exploring a cavern and I had recently discovered a new room. In coming out of this room I had the awareness that to my right was darkness … just darkness. I kept trying to look to my right, and it was as if I couldn’t even turn my head to the right to see. I continued with this intention for at least 15 minutes … waiting for the time to come where this cleared and I would be able to see into this place. It never happened, I was blind there.

– Now back to the teleconference –

One person was talking about the need to accept ones self. The leader interrupted and what she said sparked off this vision for me … while she was talking I felt energy pulsate from her through my heart chakra, which tightened and tingled all at the same time … it was as if I was experiencing the vision and listening to her at the same time:

“It is not enough to simply accept oneself.” she said, “It is much deeper than that. We are trained to view ourselves through our accomplishments … through our results.”

I am back in that underground chamber now … walking toward the place that has been blackened out from my mind’s eye.

“So if you tell anyone that they need to accept themself, they will immediately refer back to what they know … what their results are: how much money they have, what their relationships are, their power, their charm, etc. These are the things they have always used to feel accepted.”

I am rounding the corner and look to where the blackness was … and still is.

“What really needs to happen, what I had to take on for myself, is that we have to accept that we are spiritual beings in a human form. We have both a soulful essence, a spirit, and a human nature. That spirit is ALREADY whole and complete … right now! There is NOTHING that needs to be done to improve on it. YOU are already whole and complete … and you have a human nature that will always be there as well … and that human nature is flawed. You can’t focus on the human nature and exclude the true nature, the spirit … but that is what we do when we base our sense of worth on our results and our accomplishments.”

The blackness disappears and I see an emaciated man shackled to a wall … bleeding as if he had been tortured. I ran to him and broke the shackles out of the wall. I picked up his form, which felt light as a feather, and carried him into the new chamber I had just discovered a couple of weeks ago. There now was a pool glowing with light in the center of that room, and I gently lowered that poor, tortured man into the waters … his head propped on a rock and light glowing all around him, as if it was a psychadelic bathtub.

“That is the nature of Duality,” the speaker continued, “we always have the perfect soulful essence laying down right beside this flawed human nature. It is together that they are beautiful. You can’t try to make the human nature wrong for not being perfect, and you can’t remove the soulful essence from who you truly are … they’re not seperate, you are both simultaneously. That is the edge we must walk.”

As the man begins to heal … I see that he is me. I SEE that I have been torturing the human part of myself by constantly measuring my self worth by accomplishments. EVERY TIME I don’t get the results I want I was whipping him bloody. I feel a hollow feeling in my chest … horror. I go to him, and hug him, and ask him to forgive me. I try to merge with him and make him one with me … but it won’t take. I have been the torturer for far too long … it will take time for him to trust me enough … so that we can be equal, and whole, and complete, and beautiful … together.

~~~~~~~

Religion4All is an idea: that every human being (no matter their race, religion, sexuality, social status, lifestyle, or any other possible factor) is LOVED by God; just … as … they are.

We all are loved by God, and NO religion or person has a monopoly on it. Every single person on this planet is loved equally by God … SO many are cut off from God because they are told they don’t belong. God loves everyone … we ALL are beautiful creations … we don’t need to cringe when we hear the words “God”, or “religion”, or their judgments … God LOVES us all!

There is no requirement to change in order to be LOVED by God, or to LOVE God. God is LOVE, and LOVE is God … period. There is no one who God loves more than anyone else … there are only those who choose to LOVE more … to love God more, and consequently then to love each other more. In doing so, we grow closer to God … and know God.

By opening our hearts, and minds to God (free of boundaries like religion, or social trends); by LOVING God … we are exactly where we are meant to be. If we maintain that openness, never allowing any person or event to make us close our hearts, we will be guided by God to be who we are meant to be.

In that space of openness we can then live a life of LOVE, and be guided to where we are meant to be … forever in LOVE.

Southern California, Northern California, Mission ViejoIrvineLos AngelesSan FranciscoMarinSan JoseSan Juan CapistranoSanta AnaPalm SpringsLong Beach

pic from Pinterest.

A Perfect Paradox

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“I am already perfect … I need do nothing to become perfect … it is only my actions that are imperfect.”

That is a very different mantra than what I grew up with!  For those who do not know, I grew up in a fundamentalist Christian missionary family.  There were good sides and bad sides to this, as there is to all things … Dualiity.  The wonderful side is that this upbringing is what introduced me to the concept of having a literal relationship with God … it doesn’t get any better than that!  One of the many down sides is that I was imprinted with certain mindsets which I have now come to see are false … not only are they false, but they are harmful.

The specific mindset I am referencing here is the mindset that “We all are born sinners!” … horrible, awful sinners who must bemoan their woeful state and flagellate themselves constantly with the lashes of shame and penitence.

This is false.

We all truly are beautiful creations … at our core we are the unique, sparkling beauty of a soul that God created us to be.  We have LEARNED to do evil things … but we are not evil at our core.  We have taken upon ourselves the structures of the world around us: how we were raised, who we find to love, where we go for acceptance and validation, what we choose to believe, who we choose to follow, and the list goes on.  These all are the structures we have built upon the fabric and foundation of our souls … and we will do ANYTHING to maintain the solidity and surety of those structures … even if it means doing things that are harmful to others.

It is in letting these structures dissolve we find the freedom to become the perfect and beautiful creatures that we were created to be.  The more we adhere to these structures, the more we keep that perfect creation buried deep, SO DEEP, within the sealed up wells of our inner psyche.  We do this thinking that we are protecting ourselves … if that True Self gets hurt it can be devastating.  So we submerge it, and hide it, we bury it, and bind it … so that we won’t be hurt in such a way again.

In doing so, however, we are denying the perfection that already IS.  We already ARE perfection … the perfection that God created us to be.  It is only our ACTIONS that are imperfect … and those actions are based on what we have learned, taken on, or been brainwashed to believe.

Will my actions ever be perfect? No, probably not. That still doesn’t mean that I am a horrible, awful person at my core … and neither are you.

When you were born and those innocent newborn eyes looked out into the world … do you really believe you were evil??  No … you were perfect … and you still are perfect … your actions simply do not reflect that perfection.  You have lost touch with the perfection that IS the LOVE of God. Love that is there for all of us, and LIVES in all of us already.  All we can do is strive to reflect that Perfection into the world around us … strive to embrace the fact that we are all beings with Duality and to embody the perfect Love that is already there at our core.

Doing this means LETTING GO of the structures that are learned or imposed … not clinging to them more desperately.

THAT is a HUGE difference … at least for me.

You are perfect … JUST AS YOU ARE.  God loves you … JUST AS YOU ARE.

Peace and Love.

~~~~~~~

Religion4All is an idea: that every human being (no matter their race, religion, sexuality, social status, lifestyle, or any other possible factor) is LOVED by God; just … as … they are.

We all are loved by God, and NO religion or person has a monopoly on it. Every single person on this planet is loved equally by God … SO many are cut off from God because they are told they don’t belong. God loves everyone … we ALL are beautiful creations … we don’t need to cringe when we hear the words “God”, or “religion”, or their judgments … God LOVES us all!

There is no requirement to change in order to be LOVED by God, or to LOVE God. God is LOVE, and LOVE is God … period. There is no one who God loves more than anyone else … there are only those who choose to LOVE more … to love God more, and consequently then to love each other more. In doing so, we grow closer to God … and know God.

By opening our hearts, and minds to God (free of boundaries like religion, or social trends); by LOVING God … we are exactly where we are meant to be. If we maintain that openness, never allowing any person or event to make us close our hearts, we will be guided by God to be who we are meant to be.

In that space of openness we can then live a life of LOVE, and be guided to where we are meant to be … forever in LOVE.

Southern California, Northern California, Mission ViejoIrvineLos AngelesSan FranciscoMarinSan JoseSan Juan CapistranoSanta AnaPalm SpringsLong Beach

 

Perfect Facade

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Living in this world is almost entirely comprised of proving your worth.  People like to pretend that this is not the case, that their “love” is really the stuff that True Love is made of … that being Unconditional … but this idea is disproved all around us.

Think about it … if you did nothing to prove your worth, where and who would you be?  If you didn’t shave hairs off your body, or spend hours looking just right, or get a job that garners respect, or lose weight, or act in the way that is most appropriate to those you have chosen to love … what would your view of yourself be?  What would their view of you be?

You have proving yourself to your family, or proving yourself to the Church … proving yourself to the government … proving yourself to the girls, or guys, or neighbors, or bosses, or co-workers, or strangers who you don’t even know but you don’t want them to look at your weirdly in the grocery store while you’re shopping for food.  We do EVERYTHING just to gain what passes for acceptance or love … but really isn’t acceptance or love at all.  It’s acceptance and love for the perfect facade you present … not you.

If all you did was sit on a street corner … could you live with that?  Could you face yourself each and every day?  Would the nagging, nay gnawing, diminish or grow within you?

What if I added something to that question?  What if all you did was sit on a street corner … and worship God … all day?  Does that change it for you? No, probably not.

Why is that?

When there is nothing more important that we can be doing than loving God and, through that, loving each other … why is it that EVERYTHING that defines us is about proving ourselves to each other?  It’s the OPPOSITE of loving God and, through that, loving each other!!

Even for myself with meditation … I have realized that so much of that is about DOING something … PROVING myself.  I have to be making myself into the epitome of what I believe God wants me to be … when all God wants is for me to BE … right there, in that moment, in the present LOVING and basking in the hovering afterglow that IS God.

Try it … see how hard it really is ;-).

Am I saying that we should all just do nothing?  Of course not … but we CAN at least detach that incessant inner source-wire that has become the pseudo pump for our life blood … dictating virtually every action we have.  What if the decisions you made in life were not about anything more than what is authentic to you … to who you were created to be?  To simply be the person that makes God smile.  That would be a wonderful place to step forward from …

~~~~~~~

Religion4All is an idea: that every human being (no matter their race, religion, sexuality, social status, lifestyle, or any other possible factor) is LOVED by God; just … as … they are.

We all are loved by God, and NO religion or person has a monopoly on it. Every single person on this planet is loved equally by God … SO many are cut off from God because they are told they don’t belong. God loves everyone … we ALL are beautiful creations … we don’t need to cringe when we hear the words “God”, or “religion”, or their judgments … God LOVES us all!

There is no requirement to change in order to be LOVED by God, or to LOVE God. God is LOVE, and LOVE is God … period. There is no one who God loves more than anyone else … there are only those who choose to LOVE more … to love God more, and consequently then to love each other more. In doing so, we grow closer to God … and know God.

By opening our hearts, and minds to God (free of boundaries like religion, or social trends); by LOVING God … we are exactly where we are meant to be. If we maintain that openness, never allowing any person or event to make us close our hearts, we will be guided by God to be who we are meant to be.

In that space of openness we can then live a life of LOVE, and be guided to where we are meant to be … forever in LOVE.

Southern California, Northern California, Mission ViejoIrvineLos AngelesSan FranciscoMarinSan JoseSan Juan CapistranoSanta AnaPalm SpringsLong Beach

A Wicked Trifecta

forgiveness, judgment, letting go, breaking bad habits, breaking patterns, allowing, inner work, healing

“Triad” – by Carla Parris

Of late I have been meditating on the issue of judgment: how it occurs in my life, and how much it needs to be allowed to come up, worked through, and let go of. Here is a note I dictated, on the fly, on the subject … in a moment of epiphany.

“If I hold onto judgment in any form then I end up judging myself even more cruelly. Because of my abusive past I have an inner voice that is incredibly destructive.

So if I judge other people I will judge myself ten times more harshly. If I judge myself that harshly then when other people judge me it will cut me to the very depths I have already judged myself.  From that state of self-judgment, I will proceed to pre-judge others as a defense mechanism.

It is a wicked trifecta of judgment … if I allow any one of them to exist in my heart then they will all exist … and consume me.

The only way I will ever be free is to give up judgment on all levels … in all forms … toward others, toward myself, and from others.”

Give it a try! 😉

Peace and Love

~~~~~~~

Religion4All is an idea: that every human being (no matter their race, religion, sexuality, social status, lifestyle, or any other possible factor) is LOVED by God; just … as … they are.

We all are loved by God, and NO religion or person has a monopoly on it. Every single person on this planet is loved equally by God … SO many are cut off from God because they are told they don’t belong. God loves everyone … we ALL are beautiful creations … we don’t need to cringe when we hear the words “God”, or “religion”, or their judgments … God LOVES us all!

There is no requirement to change in order to be LOVED by God, or to LOVE God. God is LOVE, and LOVE is God … period. There is no one who God loves more than anyone else … there are only those who choose to LOVE more … to love God more, and consequently then to love each other more. In doing so, we grow closer to God … and know God.

By opening our hearts, and minds to God (free of boundaries like religion, or social trends); by LOVING God … we are exactly where we are meant to be. If we maintain that openness, never allowing any person or event to make us close our hearts, we will be guided by God to be who we are meant to be.

In that space of openness we can then live a life of LOVE, and be guided to where we are meant to be … forever in LOVE.

Southern California, Northern California,Mission ViejoIrvineLos AngelesSan FranciscoMarinSan JoseSan Juan CapistranoSanta AnaPalm SpringsLong Beach

What “Judgment” Really Means

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The tricky thing about language is that we really don’t grasp or comprehend what somebody else’s interpretation of each word is. When I say “bliss” I think of floating with sea turtles while snorkeling on the north shore of Kauai. Somebody else’s version of that same word could be a remembrance of their first kiss … and yet another’s interpretation could be the adrenaline rush after an hours worth of strenuous exercise. I might personally use different words for each one of those experiences, but they use the word “bliss” … and I am instantly transported to my own personal interpretation.

When you think of all the other myriad of words (and combinations of words) in the English language, and in any other language, you begin to realize the importance of understanding the reality of how we literally live in language.

This was made crystal clear to me in the past few weeks. I experienced what I termed as judgment from a close family member. Fortunately I have done enough spiritual and meditative work that I did not react in a negative way at the time. However, this instance continued to bother me over the last few weeks. In talking about this with a mentor and a group of peers I began to see that my interpretation of “judgment” is very different than theirs. So for the past few weeks I have been meditating on just what “judgment” means to me … here is what I was very surprised to have come up with:

– “Judgment” for me taps into the emotions around getting caught by an abusive stepmother exploring what to me was completely innocent and new-found as a maturing 12-year-old … not realizing that this is considered “wrong” by many people. My stepmother proceeded to convince my father that I could not be trusted around children because of this … I was disgusting to her; I could hear it in her voice.

– Judgment, for me, is in my head; dating back to that same twelve year old being molested by an older man in the neighborhood who befriended me after my mother’s death. I should have DONE something other than sit there in a trance-like state of shock/horror … it was all MY fault (or so my mind repeated over and over).

– “Judgment” emotionally taps into a physically abusive older brother who, as a three hundred pound football lineman, would bruise me, slap me, or sit on me and spit in my face … or some variation of this type of treatment on an almost daily basis. Between him and my stepmother I abandoned my bedroom for the privacy and safety of rooftops.

– “Judgment” for me causes emotions to stir from that same brother, along with several other older siblings, admitting me into a religious program with the intention of “changing me” … there was something wrong with me, you see.

– “Judgment” for me is when I had a spiritual revelation and God told me that I am Loved, and beautiful just as I am, I was renounced by family and friends alike for believing it.

Is it any wonder that “judgment” has occurred for me as a thing of deepest dread … the stuff nightmares are made of??

Do you think that the family member I felt judged by intended THOSE feelings with what he said? I know for a FACT that he did not … but subconsciously that was what occurred for me when “judgment” happened.

The point of all of this is not to vent or be a martyr … the time for all of that in my life is LONG since past. I have worked it all through, forgiven and let go of most of it. No, this exercise for me was a matter of staid observance and rational detachment … sitting back in the seat of my consciousness and allowing these internal blockages to be released and flow out of me. Now that I am aware of my interpretations for the word “judgment” whenever it occurs within me I can now say,

“You are not being attacked, they are not intending what your personal experience of judgment is.”

I am now free of what before was a very powerful trigger … this, to me, is one of the primary benefits of inner work and spiritual connectivity.

If I had not gone through what I went through I would not be in the place that I am now; where I understand such a thing. The very dread voices that caused me SUCH despair are ALSO the voices that drove me to depend on God that much MORE. The intensely intimate, real and visceral relationship I have with God is a result of all of this … transforming me into the person who will contribute whatever it is that God wants me to contribute for the rest of my life.

Through this I can be grateful for everything I have experienced, or will … it all just brings me that much closer to God.

So what words do you have in your life where you might have a different translation than with somebody else intends?? The next time you’re triggered into an emotional response … think about it … see if you can learn to swim in the language you live in, rather than drown in it.

Peace and Love

~~~~~~~

Religion4All is an idea: that every human being (no matter their race, religion, sexuality, social status, lifestyle, or any other possible factor) is LOVED by God; just … as … they are.

We all are loved by God, and NO religion or person has a monopoly on it. Every single person on this planet is loved equally by God … SO many are cut off from God because they are told they don’t belong. God loves everyone … we ALL are beautiful creations … we don’t need to cringe when we hear the words “God”, or “religion”, or their judgments … God LOVES us all!

There is no requirement to change in order to be LOVED by God, or to LOVE God. God is LOVE, and LOVE is God … period. There is no one who God loves more than anyone else … there are only those who choose to LOVE more … to love God more, and consequently then to love each other more. In doing so, we grow closer to God … and know God.

By opening our hearts, and minds to God (free of boundaries like religion, or social trends); by LOVING God … we are exactly where we are meant to be. If we maintain that openness, never allowing any person or event to make us close our hearts, we will be guided by God to be who we are meant to be.

In that space of openness we can then live a life of LOVE, and be guided to where we are meant to be … forever in LOVE.

Southern California, Northern California,Mission Viejo, Irvine, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Marin, San Jose, San Juan Capistrano, Santa Ana, Palm Springs, Long Beach

 

– Mother Theresa

Architectural Freedom

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It could be said that we as humans are inately architectural. Everywhere we go, with every single activity, we are creating structures. These structures are comprised of our thoughts, intentions, declarations, and ultimately actions. When you are a child you are far more your own architect than when you are an adult. Sure, you may have the structure that your parents provide or whatever church or school you belong to … but really you’re allowed a level of freedom that is considered a luxury as an adult.

As an adult you are told that you must be responsible … and this basically means you must take on the structures of what everyone else deems acceptable. So all those areas of free thought that you loved as a child are ceded away to the structures of Work, Church, Political Party, etc., etc. … all the way down to the structure of whatever neighborhood you live in.

You “must” do these things in the name of being “responsible”. We CRAVE the days of our youth … but what we really want is Architectural Freedom!

For a very long period of my life I knew that I did not want to fit into any of these structures, so I rebelled against all of them … subconsciously thinking that this was the path to freedom. Ultimately though I was just choosing a different structure … I was choosing the structure of No Structure; of Chaos. So, while I was different and somewhat more free, seemingly, I still was a prisoner of a structure that was not composed of my conscious intent.

Now my structure is based on Love … the only infallible foundation that I have found. Now I am building my very own structure upon that foundation … and it is beholden to no one but myself. I can choose to take on other people’s structures or other organizations’ structures … but it will be based on my own personal decision of whether or not it fits MY personal structure that I have chosen to be Love.

True freedom is becoming your own Architect … recognizing the value and power of structure and then crafting and creating what you want that structure to be; with intention.

The “kicker” in this architectural equation is that you also are responsible for EVERYTHING. Everything that is a result of your structure is yours to own and live with the consequences of … to learn from, really. If you hurt someone it is because of your actions, not because the church you go to told you to reject or judge someone. If your chosen structure is working too much and ignoring your family, you can no longer blame the people who made you work too much. If people are denied equal rights it’s partially based on your decision … you’re no longer just a small part of the greater entity and therefore not responsible for such a thing!

Every … single … decision … becomes the result of your chosen structure.

See, we LIKE having these excuses. We might say that we want freedom, but we sure as hell don’t want the responsibility that comes with it! That scares people! Most people will go their entire lives without ever creating their own structure simply so that they don’t have to be responsible.

The other frightening aspect of becoming your own Architect is that you have to look at every part of your life … and let go of or, in some cases, even break down the structures that exist. This is painful to both you and the people involved in your accumulated structures. We don’t want to hurt people, so we just go on maintaining the structures that ultimately hold us back.

It is no easy task … in fact, it is incredibly difficult at first. Once you have done it though you FEEL the unlimited amount of energy that flows through you … energy that you never even imagined existed in the Old Way. Life, God’s Love, literally flows through you like a river … it guides you to where you are supposed to be … all based on the structure you have created for it!

Some might think I’m preaching rebellion, or anarchy … when in fact I am preaching exactly the opposite. We NEED structure … we simply don’t necessarily need the structure that everyone else tells us we need.

But that is up for you to decide … at least it is if you take the transformational journey of becoming your own personal architect.

Peace and Love.

~~~~~~~

pic of Disney Hall.

~~~~~~~

Religion4All is an idea: that every human being (no matter their race, religion, sexuality, social status, lifestyle, or any other possible factor) is LOVED by God; just … as … they are.

We all are loved by God, and NO religion or person has a monopoly on it. Every single person on this planet is loved equally by God … SO many are cut off from God because they are told they don’t belong. God loves everyone … we ALL are beautiful creations … we don’t need to cringe when we hear the words “God”, or “religion”, or their judgments … God LOVES us all!

There is no requirement to change in order to be LOVED by God, or to LOVE God. God is LOVE, and LOVE is God … period. There is no one who God loves more than anyone else … there are only those who choose to LOVE more … to love God more, and consequently then to love each other more. In doing so, we grow closer to God … and know God.

By opening our hearts, and minds to God (free of boundaries like religion, or social trends); by LOVING God … we are exactly where we are meant to be. If we maintain that openness, never allowing any person or event to make us close our hearts, we will be guided by God to be who we are meant to be.

In that space of openness we can then live a life of LOVE, and be guided to where we are meant to be … forever in LOVE.

Southern California, Northern California, Mission Viejo, Irvine, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Marin, San Jose, San Juan Capistrano, Santa Ana, Palm Springs, Long Beach