Tamed

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A month ago, they were fighting so much we had to muzzle them when they were in the same room.

What changed?

A slow transition to unmuzzled company.

Daily exercise.

Firm but loving handling: sitting before going out a door, sitting before feeding, etc.

Immediately redirecting any aggressive behavior.

Lots of positive reinforcement of good behavior.

 

Dogs are a lot like humans!

Divided We Fall…

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Responsive Drawing Doodle

Labels separate us.

I’m typically identified in my country and community as “Asian-American” because I’m 100% ethnically Korean (but I was born in Iowa). We have Mexican-Americans, African-Americans, and Native-Americans but rarely do we ever call white people European-Americans. What is the ramification of this?

Why not do away with these labels?

Who cares if someone is gay or straight? Religious or not? Conservative or Liberal? Poor or rich? Why not label everyone simply “human” and treat each other humanely?

A religious woman I know told me, “I love my gay son, but too bad he’s going to go to hell.” Labeling her son and categorizing him as a sinner effectively created an unnecessary distance and one I believe she could regret.

Labels are used to create differences. It’s time we emphasize how we are the same.

Here is an in-depth, research-based study on the effects of labeling people:

Why It’s Dangerous to Label People (Psychology Today).

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

No Two Are Alike

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“The middle one is pregnant,” says the husband.

Every zebra has unique stripe patterns – much like humans’ fingerprints. 

If we could just appreciate our singularity – and the originality of others, this world would be a more peaceful place.

I like Ram Dass’ observation: When we go out and see trees, we don’t judge them. We don’t say this one is better than that one. We appreciate every tree. We should do that with people. Appreciate every person. 

Judgmental people tend to judge themselves fiercely. They believe it makes them work harder and be better. In fact, judgmental people possess an insecurity and sometimes a level of self-hate that disables them to love others.

There is strife in America right now. There is a great divide. But ignorance is being met with consciousness and ultimately, awareness will win.

 

 

 

The Basics of Happiness

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Jars (Watercolor)

 

“Happiness is a living thing. You need to feed your happiness in order to have happiness last. It’s like love. If you don’t feed your love, it will die. Understanding and compassion are the foundation to happiness.”

Thich Nhat Hanh

Free Spirit

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Waiting on my white gel pen to finish this piece.

 

Another way to look at your day’s purpose (and string of those leads to a life’s purpose) is to be mindful of your “vibrational frequency.” Yes, that might sound like hippie-speak, but consider it. (What’s wrong with being a Flower Child or Free Spirit, anyway?)

I read Light Watkin’s blog and this is how it inspired me:

If you’re into positive thinking and purpose, think about the present moment in terms of the vibrational frequency you’re putting “out there” (into your world). Are you giving off positive vibes? Or are you complaining or worrying?

When we talk about people giving off “vibes,” we’re often addressing their general energy, not something that said or did specifically. We have all felt someone’s energy as positive or negative before that person said a word.

Appreciating your present moment in terms of energy can get you out of your head (when you’re worried or upset about a specific event). Sometimes, it can be easier than identifying your current thought and catching yourself thinking non-productively. Am I giving off good vibes? Easy to answer. And thus, easy to change.

 

 

 

But What Can I Do?

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At first, he was a reluctant civil rights leader.

He had (very legitimate) fears: personal safety, the safety of his family…

But he served anyway.

It only took one person to lead a nation and provide inspiration for decades thereafter.

But what can I do? You might ask.

When you hear hate, speak up.

When you see injustice, take action.

When it’s election time, vote.

Thank you, Martin Luther King, Jr., for your leadership.*

*from Light Watkins