My husband and I have been in an epic philosophical battle for the past year over a particular subject.  The subject is something I hold to a high standard and is one of my core beliefs.  The individual is superior to the Collective. It started off as discussing the Common Good, Greater Good, and the like.  But as time went on, we understood that it came down to an old philosophical argument: Which is Superior (for the betterment of humankind) Individualism or Collectivism?
     What does this have to do with Yin and Yang being Superior.? Yin and Yang represent the positive and negative of life. It can also be seen as a difference in thought and ideals.  All too often we want someone to be on our side, we hang out with people that think and believe just like we do, thus we find ourselves in a rut.  (Side note, this is why I am so strong in my belief of freedom of speech, without debate, we cannot grow)
     Well...We could grow...We could learn...It's just harder when we get in that rut, thus making Yin and Yang a Superior way of life, listening, seeing, and attempting to understand both the dark and light.
     Here is an example of Yin and Yin, vs. Yin and Yang (You could also say Yang and Yang vs. Yin and Yang).  Let's say Jan and Ron are married and they happened to belong to a cult.  They are so use to this cult, and all their friends like this cult, that it isn't until Jim Jones tells them to drink the Kool-aid that Ron starts to question whether or not they should be in the cult.
     Take that example again.  Ron is not in a cult, let's make it even better and say that Ron is an atheist (the extreme left and right). Let's keep Jan as a member of a cult.  Let's say they date for 5 months and are so engrossed in each other that they don't even think to talk about religion until it is too late: They are in Love.  This first conversation might end in a bad way, Jan cries, Ron is upset, but they come back, because they are in love.  They start talking, each one wants to understand the other, so they begin studying, and before you know it, both know more about each others ideals.  Now of course it could end the same way, Jan drinking the Kool-aid, but I think the chances are low.
     This is NOT about religion, or atheism or any of that.  It is about 2 different ideologies coming together to help each person grow and learn, because either way, both know more about the world and can see different people's perspectives a bit more.  This is basically what is happening with Steve and I, we keep learning more in hopes, I think, of swaying the others stubborn mind.  (YEAH FOR STUBBORN PEOPLE!)
     Anyway, I hope this tiny little example helps you be open to listening to other people outside your box.  We live in an extreme world, and in the very least, listening to the other person gives you more knowledge, and as we know...Knowledge is power, it can protect us in a dire situations.  Simple example: Being stuck out in the woods in the middle of the night with no fire in freezing temperatures...you learned, in the past, how to build a fire without a match...you start a fire, with this knowledge, you live another day.  (Also, I am sharing a video on Collectivism vs. Individualism, for those who might not be aware of this Epic Philosophical Showdown)   Thanks for joining me.  If you liked this Article, Please Share it.  :) *E

Still on a writing break, however, this made me so mad that I had to share it with you all...lest you believe it is true.
     I was driving to the grocery store and happened upon a talk-radio station.  The voice wasn't familiar, thus I assume it was a stand-in.  Nevertheless, he was an idiot, and as you know, I don't think people are stupid, so he must have done something very wrong.  What was it?
     He was complaining that social media, you know the World Wide Web that has brought us closer (and further apart) the thing that gives free education, and a lot of bull$hit, is destroying us all.  And pray tell how?  Because losers are allowed to speak their voice, in fact every small, stupid, loser, crazy, nut job, is allowed to have a voice, and it makes it so...wait for it...no one can be popular very long.  What?  Popular?  After he has said that not being popular is destroying our world he prattles on about how Michael Jordan wouldn't have been popular in the age of information.  He of course justifies this by bringing up the popularity of the Canadian Prime Minister with a rating of I think (I'm just going off memory here) 56%...and he seems concerned and confused.  He said: How can the Canadian Prime Minister NOT be popular?  What does Canada even do?  It's not like they are America, the Superman of countries that has to go bail everyone out of trouble.   UGH!!!  At this point I had to turn off the radio, lest my mind turned to mush.
     One:  Everyone deserves a Voice.  Everyone Matters...Not just some pompous ass on the radio.  Two:  If people are unpopular, who cares, unless their politicians, and I think we all know why they aren't very popular.  One does not like someone that is fake and lies.   No one likes someone that constantly makes promises and does not keep them.  Three: What in the hell does popularity have to do with censorship?
Four: Google what the Prime Minister is doing to lose his rating.  and Five:  The Superman of countries?  Really?  Now I have just as much pride in the United States as the next person, but Superman?  I remember that Superman was helping to get rid of the Military Industrial Complex.  I remember watching Superman take nuclear weapons and throw them into the sun.  Superman would not drone children and call them collateral damage.  Superman was about freedom and justice, two things we have seen the politicians take away from us.
     So to all you: Losers, Crazy people, and the lot: Keep speaking up, obviously we are doing something right, if not, some jackass on the radio wouldn't be pissing and moaning about the ordinary man having a voice. 
      That is all.  Thanks.  XOXOX Elicia.

Saturday and Sunday, before I was struck down with this horrid illness.  (Just kidding, it was short and I am now operating at 80%)...I was cleaning my back yard, and even though I was tired, my skin full of scratch marks, I was at peace with the world.  Something about yard work makes me calm.  But then, I had to drive to the local garden shop and had to deal with road rage people.
     Question: If you had god-like powers, would you do anything petty?

     To explain: the rules.  You have god-like powers, but let us pretend that in order to live on earth with meager humans you have to keep it hidden, and no matter how much you want to save the world, you can't you are bound by laws of the universe, laws greater than even you.  (Come on this is imagination time).  You are however allowed to use your magic, so to speak, but in a limited way.  You know, you save a dead dog hit by a careless driver.  You secretly heal the old woman down the street
, and every once in awhile, when you are tired, your yard is suddenly perfectly pruned.   So you get it right: These are the rules.
       Now we go back to the Question: Would you do anything petty? 
       I would.  This question comes to me every time I get cut off in traffic.  I took a right hand turn, had plenty of room, and I see a white sports car coming up going at least 60 mph in a 40 mph zone.  I turn on my blinker to get in the left lane because I have to turn left.  Well the same man who was closing in on me tried to get over, without his blinker, at the same moment I did, he jerks his car to the right, I quickly pull into the left, he then, because we can see inside a car which I believe some people forget, starts screaming at me.  He turns beat red and zips by, only to be stopped at the very next light, with me to the right.  He is still screaming, his anger out of control, and when the light changes he zips away.
       Now in my youth I may have been like this man, I may have lost my temper, started screaming and yelling like a two-year-old being denied that third cookie...but I have learned to remain calm: How: I imagine being God-like, I imagine that I pop out of my car and into their car and say: "Well that wasn't very nice what you just did.  You should learn to control your temper."  Then, after they are scared, I pop back into my car and happily drive away, knowing that the person would be confused. 
     I know this may seem like a silly question, but I think in life, sometimes you need to find creative ways to handle people that are angry.   In the end, I have come to understand that it takes two to argue.  When someone loses their temper with me I try to remain calm, after all, one day, that same man that loses his temper so easily is going to give himself a heart-attack.  Life can be beautiful if only we slow down and learn to cherish both the journey and the destination, not simply the destination.  :)
     As always, have a beautiful day!!!!  Elicia
  And thank you for stopping by.     

The hand that rocks the cradle, rules the world?  I didn't know this was actually a poem, so I would like to share it with you first.

BLESSINGS on the hand of women! 
        Angels guard its strength and grace. 
      In the palace, cottage, hovel, 
          Oh, no matter where the place; 
      Would that never storms assailed it, 
          Rainbows ever gently curled, 
      For the hand that rocks the cradle 
          Is the hand that rules the world.


Infancy's the tender fountain, 
          Power may with beauty flow, 
          Mothers first to guide the streamlets, 
          From them souls unresting grow— 
          Grow on for the good or evil, 
          Sunshine streamed or evil hurled, 
          For the hand that rocks the cradle 
          Is the hand that rules the world.

         Woman, how divine your mission, 
         Here upon our natal sod; 
         Keep—oh, keep the young heart open 
          Always to the breath of God! 
         All true trophies of the ages 
          Are from mother-love impearled, 
        For the hand that rocks the cradle 
          Is the hand that rules the world.

          Blessings on the hand of women! 
          Fathers, sons, and daughters cry, 
         And the sacred song is mingled 
          With the worship in the sky— 
         Mingles where no tempest darkens, 
          Rainbows evermore are hurled; 
         For the hand that rocks the cradle 
          Is the hand that rules the world.

     The fact is, there are now many hands that rock the cradle.  Parents are forced to work long hours just to stay a float and the hand that rocks the cradle is usually a daycare and while some are great, many are not.  Most parents that have had to employ a daycare know this.  I honestly think that we could change the world in three-generations by figuring out how to create a society that has one person devoted to staying home with the child until that child is an adult.  By creating a society that teaches parents many different ways of parenting (As each child is unique and not simply a thing to be programmed).  Think about this: Do we teach stress management and communication to our children?  Maybe we should.  How hard is it to handle a crying baby, try to clean up a house, and jungle the stresses of the world: It's hard, even harder if you don't have the tools to first understand your emotions, then understand how to diffuse them.
     What can we do?  We start with us.  We start with our own family.  We reach out to our circle of friends.  We learn coping and helpful parenting tools.  I am a big fan of John Bradshaw if you Youtube his name you will find and endless source of information. 
     As a mother I have learned that the mother must not just be the sweet voice singing lullabies.   She must be strong, brave, and have an inner voice that she listens to.  And fathers, fathers must be allowed to love their children. They must be more than some looming figure that cracks the whip.  I honestly believe love is the key to raising children.
     In the end we are going to make mistakes, this is life, but that doesn't mean you throw your hands into the air and say; Well shit, this can't be fixed.  You continue to grow, learn, and educate your children, even into their adulthood.  If you make a mistake, don't be afraid to apologize to your children, but if you do, be sure that you correct whatever it is you are doing wrong. 
     That is all I have.  I would like to leave you with this quote:
You don't really understand human nature unless you know why a child on a merry-go-round will wave at his parents every time around — and why his parents will always wave back. ~William D. Tammeus

Last night was a critical moment in Raven's growth as a strong young lady who could choose to face the pain head on or quit. I'm not going to lie to you folks, I had to hold back my own tears, I can't imagine what it was like for her. 
    To set the stage: Raven lives a sheltered life.  Let me define sheltered as I am sure many will picture a bubble being placed around her, which is not the case.  Raven has never been physically hurt, we don't believe in spanking and she only went to public school shortly, thus she has never had the pleasure of being bullied by some little jackass.  Knowing this, you must understand how shocking it was for her when she received her first bloody nose because of a Karate move.
     What happened: First Raven gets a bloody nose, no big deal, we clean it up and she goes back in like a champ.  Next comes the real pain.  They are focusing on self-defense when facing a larger perpetrator.  This involves a painful move that involves the wrist.  Unfortunately, Raven is the new girl in the blue belts class, her wrists are not like water yet (no worries, we will be working on wrist flexibility).  And as she was brought down, her wrist was hurt, her face went pallid, she got dizzy, sat down, and had to really try hard not to cry.  Her Sensei was wonderful to her, talked to her, and told her to go out of the room and get a drink of water. 
     Here I stand, and I think:  This is it, this is her moment, what is she going to do?  Is she going to give up?
     I have her sit down, give her some water, and let her breathe.  I don't say anything, I simply kneel before her and breathe with her.  I can see she is deep in thought.  She is rubbing her wrist and processing a life decision.  After another minute everyone in the class has a break and the Sensei comes out to talk to her.  He shows her his wrists and how he can move them, and shows her that her wrists are very stiff, then he looks at me to have me show her my wrists...And I show her how flexible my wrists are,..and he nods, shows her some exercises and tells her about the first time he got punched in the stomach in class had the wind knocked out of him and though he was afraid, he continued on. 
      Then he looked her in the eye and asked, "Do you want to continue on?"
      She smiled at him, nodded her head and said, "Yes."
      Yes, one word that made all the difference.  She walked back into that classroom, and continued on, she was frighted to continue, but she worked through it, and afterwords she said to me: "Well I didn't want to waste all my hard work." 
     Bravo Raven. 
     So what is this post about: Well, as parents we walk a very fine line with our children.  Their future, for the most part, is precariously placed in our hands.  Will they grow up happy?  Healthy?  Able to handle the pitfalls of life? Will they have character?  Will they love and be loved?  Will they have self respect?
      In the moment that Raven was sitting, breathing and thinking, I realized I could easily sway her if I didn't give her room to think, and thought she did.  She thought about the pain, but she focused on all the fun and happiness she gets from the class.  She thought about when she watched her Sensei's perform and how much she admired that they were teaching her how to protect herself while also warning that they must never use what they learn to hurt others.  They were teaching her how to be a person that helps others up and doesn't knock them down: And that is the type of person she wants to be. 
     To put it in the simplest of terms: I allowed my child to be her own person and to have her own thoughts on the matter and she learned to face pain with her head held high.  Sometimes we must allow our children to come to their own conclusions.  (The trick though is ensuring they have the tools to make the "right" decision).  You may not be there in their moment of "test"....So you must give them the tools.  What tools had I given Raven before this life test.  I have taught my child how to think, and not what to think.  While we do home-school and we learn difficult lessons, I first explain to her why we are learning it and how this can translate into real world things.  I also (Wish I had taught my oldest this) how to earn something, this makes gaining something worth more.  (Many parent's feel guilty working so many hours so they often fall into the trap of buying their children's love, I did this with my oldest, lesson learned.)
     In the end, we must understand that children are braver, smarter, and can be so much more than we think they can be.  Sometimes, if we stand back, let them breathe, and let them think, they will come to the right decision....which in turn is the greatest reinforcement of life lessons.
     As always have a beautiful day.  Below is a short video created after she got hurt and went back in, you can see she is afraid...but she is working it out...and over the course of this week....she is going to be stuck doing flexibility training with her mom and practicing the "wrist" move on me.  ;)

 Hypothetical Question Today. (But one that could be brought into real, ever day, situations.)
      If you have not read The Hunger Games or watched the Movie, I will attempt to make this post relevant even to you.
     Imagine if you will every year 2 random children aged 12-18 from 12 districts were picked to fight to the death?  The numbers are lower as it is the end of the world…So each year for 7 years your child could die.  24 enter: 1 man leave. (That is the nature of the Hunger Games.)

My question:  If a parent has 2 children, one was picked the year before and dies; and the next year, or even a few years down the road, the other child’s name has been chosen.  Should that child be excluded from the “Reaping” ?

Second question:  Imagine you have 2 children.  Your eldest is called to the “games” and on the train ride there, they die. Now it really isn’t the games fault…it was the train that killed the child.  Should your second child be excluded in this case?

So what are your answers?  Any solutions?  What would you do?

Thanks for stopping by.  Have a great day! E

Yesterday I asked if we could make the world a "better" place by offing the right person.  To an extent, this may be true in isolated situations.  Think of Pol Pot.  Maybe the world would have been better off, but then again we have watched many a movie where a time traveler goes back in time, kills the "oppressor" only to find out that the oppressor was replaced by someone else.  As you study the trends of humankind you might find it really isn't the machine that hurts and controls the people, it is the cogs that move the machine which are really dangerous.  And sadly, there are many cogs.
     Could anyone really have "taken" over the world, without the consent of the little Ants?  No.  And there in lies our problem. 

What is the solution?  Why education of course.  If the masses can be educated to believe whatever they are told, certainly the opposite is true.  How do we begin?  We start with ourselves, then branch out with our children, our brothers and sisters, our real friends: Because let's face it, with Austroturfs, Trolls, Shills, and people who have been "indoctrinated" it's hard to know what to believe in anymore, not to mention Facebook and Google Plus and other "social" sites being censored all the time in new and clever ways.
     Thanks for stopping by.  Have a good day!!!  And if you have time please take a look at one of my older articles: A Child, Not a Cog

<<<<<  Oh goodness.  I use public domain pictures as I fear this ever growing world of "copyright infringement" .. I popped in the word: Mean (as in mean people suck, and not what does it all mean) and I found this little gem.  I posted it, because honestly I have no idea what it means (no pun intended) So side post: What in the world does this little picture mean: childhood is cannibals and psychotic vomiting?

     Real Post: Why are people so mean (okay some people)?  More precisely, why are people in relationships so mean to each other? To explain: On Valentines Day I went to pick up dinner for the entire family and enjoyed my wait (about 45-minutes) because I enjoy watching people.  In order not to seem too creepy, I usually, if I am focusing in (or rather being rude myself by eavesdropping) by looking at my phone, but intently listening.  (Again, I realize this is rude, but we are in a public place, so I rationalize it this way).  I was happy overhearing lovely things...Love, love, joy and excitement.  Yet there was this couple:
     A group of people strolled into the business.  They put their name on the long wait list, at that time I believe it was sitting at 59 minutes.  There were four couples, a couple young people, and a baby.  The business has a bar, as many do, and after about 5 minutes, they were all chatting amongst each other, save for one man.  He looked a bit tired, and kind of sad.  He decided to get up and walk over to the bar where he orders a soda pop, no big deal.  He walks back over, sits down and starts drinking his sugar.  Keep in mind the man isn't talking to anyway as they are gushing over the new baby one of them had brought in...no problems, perfectly normal.
    Then it happens, I kid you not: His wife turns her head as though she is possessed by a demon, I am not exaggerating, picture a woman standing with her arms neatly folded (this is normal in Utah, a lot of us walk around with are arms reverently folded) She is smiling, laughing, and as if she sensed someone vomiting, she whips her head around, the smile instantly fades and a stern look falls over her face: I liken it to a parent who turns to see their child doing something very wicked.  She marches (really she only takes five short steps) and begins chastising the man, scolding him as though he were in fact her child.
     "What's wrong with you?  Why are you so f-ing rude?  Did you even think to ask anyone else if they want a drink?"
     The man looks at her, tries to say, "I just didn't..."
      She interrupts him, "Don't you be rude to me!  You are the one being rude here, not me!"
     I would have laughed, but really, this isn't the first, nor will it be the last time I see dysfunctional people treating their lovers like a small wicked child. 
     Now, to be fair, I supposed there are any number of reasons that she could be lashing out on him, but it made me think: Why do some couples start behaving in this way?  Why is it that some of us learn to love and work with each other, while others seem hell bent on breaking down the will of another person? 
     I know this is a question that is not easily answered, psychiatrist have sought to figure it out, some going as far as drilling holes in the side of children's cheeks so they could measure if children could be trained like dogs.  (Too disturbing to post on my website if you would like, I will list some links below, but BEWARE they are extremely hard to watch!)
     Here is my point:  love is an action, and it isn't just the BIG things that make it work or not work, it is the little things as well.  Treating your lover like a child is a big red-flag.  She could have easily laughed it off and said: Well Jim's got the right idea, does anyone want something from the bar, I'll go order.  (I imagine his name is Jim)   Now I know, we have all been in a relationship with a brutish person who is constantly belittling us and as a defense, we often tend to lash back.  To this I say: We have got to stop.  We are constantly criticizing the world for being bullies, but we are the world, we are society, and we must start with ourselves if we are ever going to have change. 
     So what do you think:  Do you think we are mean to each other because we are nothing more than programmable machines?  Do you think we are mean to each other because we have grown tired of a cruel world and decided it is easier to join them?    Seriously?  Why do you think people are mean? 

As always, have a beautiful day.  XOXOX

Links to the experiments:  Here (6 minutes in)   Here   Here  <<<<< Remember these will be a bit skewed so if you want to know more about each one, study them.  

Today I have a question, rather than a memory to share. Raven and I started learning about World History, and as we walk, we ended up talking about how close the characters in Hetalia come to the actual countries. This led to a question.  Remember we walk from one to two hours, so our brains start cranking out weird and sometimes, scary questions.  Here was my question to Raven:
     Imagine if you will, you take all the Major Countries, no instead let's keep it small: Russia, United States, China,  England, France, Japan, Germany, Canada, Mexico, Scotland, Ireland, Sweden...Yes let's do these countries...You can add any you would like, but no subtracting. Let us also say that we take away all weapons except bows and arrows, knives, and maybe a few bats...but no guns.  No bombs, no chemical weapons, none of that. Then you take 1,000 people from each country.  BUT, here is the big kicker.  The 1,000 must represent the whole of the country.  Example: If you are from the United States: 233 would all be under 18. 141 would have to be over 65. 508 would have to be female.  9.4 would have to be from prison.  Here's where it gets fun.  Of the 626 people that are with in a reasonable fighting age (Would you really have under 18 fight or those over 65?) 318 women and 308 men: 190 of the women have to be overweight and 231 men would have to be overweight.  (Now this doesn't mean they aren't healthy, maybe they just have a high BMI, its just a fun thing to throw in).   And of those 626, some would have to have cancer, some would have to have diabetes, etc. So you catch my drift, right?  The 1,000 has to fully represent the masses.  (So yes, if the population has a BIG enough percentage of soldiers, you could have a couple of soldiers, but no Super Soldiers ;) )
     Which country would win?  We came to a startling conclusion. I won't say yet who we thought would win, because I want to know:  Who do you think would win?  Especially when you add in health issues? Populations, welfare people, people addicted to drugs, etc.
     Don't be shy!!!  And as always, have a wonderful day.

In order to be part of today's: Thought of the Day, you must, for argument sake, take the question as a fictional question (regardless of your faith or lack thereof).  If I asked: What would you do if, while cutting down a tree, it started talking to you and asked you not to cut it down?  Well you could answer that question—See, Fun! ;)

I went down the deep dark tube of YouTube the other day.  And as I was watching someone talk they said something that made me pause the video, rewind, and play again.  Yep, he said it, he said that The Light Is A Trick?!  HUH?

Okay, so for arguments sake.  Let’s us pretend that when we die, the soul leaves the body (remember keep the religious beliefs aside) and we first see our body, and then move toward the heavens.  We are greeted with a tunnel of light.  Now also pretend, in this moment you hear your own mind say: The Light is a Trick, don’t go into the light.

Two immediate thoughts come to mind, at least for me: One, why the hell should I listen to some random guy on the internet?  I don’t know him.  And Two, maybe I should reflect on the implications of this, because they are vast.

What I have learned over the years is this: When someone says something outlandish and contrary to what I think, or well…what I have never thought about before, because hey, why would I ever contrive that the light is a trick.  I don’t immediately search out any information.  I sit back and think about it intrinsically.  I try to block out the noise of everyone else and come to a solution.

 I think, well, that just wouldn’t be fair, I mean, if it is a trick and people I love (who I must now assume aren’t really them) are guiding me and pulling me into the beautiful light, the breath of God…why wouldn’t I go?  Then I think, well what would happen if I didn’t go into the light? If you have read my book: Soul Distortion, you might know about the Soul Snatchers.  The doomed souls that roam around in a realm unseen by most humans, waiting for you to fall asleep, so they can steal away your soul and occupy your body.  If I turned from the light and started walking around…wouldn’t I end up just a lost soul, and (going off my fictional model) I would slowly turn mad, bent on getting back to earth.

Then another thought came.  Who has seen the old black and white Twilight Zones? Well Season 3, Episode 19, entitled: The Hunt…brings up this point…well sort of. An old man loves his dog, they go hunting, and unfortunately they pass on.  The old man finds himself walking down a long road and comes across the Pearly Gates of “Heaven”…He is invited in, and oh it is tempting….but the dog can’t come in.  The old man said no thank-you, the man at the gate tells him, just come in and I will sneak the dog in around the side.  The old man still says no thank-you and begins walking with his dog until he comes to the second gate, which actually is Heaven.  Just before the man enters with his dog, he makes sure his wife won’t get tricked by the first gate, and the “real” Heaven gate-keeper said she would be fine and be along shortly.

I remember when I first watched it thinking, well how will she know the first gate isn’t real?  She doesn’t have a dog with her? 

And In this episode I realized: What if the White Light Was a Trick?  How in the heck would we know? So what do you do?  In this fictional situation…Let us say you die…and the light is pulling you toward it?  Do you go?

I will tell you that this scenario actually frightens me.  Why?  Well, the implications are vast.  If there really is an afterlife that means we are eternal creatures…and to get locked into an eternal future, without having all the facts…well that seems a bit odd…

So: I think, in this fictional thought of the day, I will pause just before entering the white light.  I will then call out in every direction…and maybe start walking…or floating around…just to take a look.  Of course in my fictional mind, I fear becoming a Soul Snatcher…so I will have to be very quick…and if I feel my mind slipping into a black abyss of bedlam…I will quickly run toward the light.

That’s it my friends.  Thanks for joining me.  And thanks for keeping this as a Fictional Situation…Its just a fun way to start thinking outside the box.