Need An 18-Hour Bra?

Finding Consistent, Effective and Loving Support

Remember the Jane Russell commercials for the 18-hour bra from Playtex®? I know; it’s a totally off-the-wall question for a spiritual column, right?

By now you know who you’re dealing with here, so I doubt you’re shocked. My blog is called, “Making Sense of Life” for a reason. We can look at life from the reality of human joy and excitement, as well as from the pain and suffering we sometimes encounter.

Being spiritual beings having a spiritual experience on the human plane of existence means we get to experience the full range of human emotions and sensual understanding. We will have pain at times, often for our own protection.

However, remember this:

Pain is a given.
Suffering is optional.

One of the ways to avoid the agony that accompanies our pain is to seek support. The beauty in the teaching of Ernest Holmes philosophy, The Science of Mind®, is that our healing can come from wherever, whomever and whatever our consciousness allows.

The healing can be the pill; or the affirmative prayer, also called “spiritual mind treatment” by Holmes; or, through the chiropractor, physician, therapist, counselor, etc. We have so many possibilities. It’s up to each of us individually to find what works for us in our current circumstances.

There is an interesting support system that happens in the waters off of Mozambique. Brittle stars, normally a sea bottom dwelling creature related to starfish, attach themselves to drifting jellyfish, living safely among the stinging tentacles of their host. Does the brittle star do this for protection from predators? To glean food not consumed by the jellyfish? For transportation, just hitchin’ a ride? And, why doesn’t the jellyfish eat the brittle star? What’s in it for the jellyfish?

Marine research scientists are unsure of the answers to these questions. What we can learn from this example is that what’s happening in this interspecies support relationship is obviously working for the ones involved. We don’t have to understand it for it to work for them.

In our lives we might need more support at times than others. It’s up to us individually to determine what that support will be. And, just like the brittle star, no one has to understand what works for us.

At times we might have to call in the 18-hour bra support, while other times a sports bra, the latest from Victoria Secret® or we might just decide to run through life nipples to the wind! (To my few male readers, substitute jockstrap, cup, briefs, boxers or commando – didn’t want you to think I forgot you!)

Do you feel the need for support to move you through and beyond something you’re going through? Reach out to someone or some practice that you know works for you. Get the help you need to move through the dark tunnels to the light of Truth and beauty that awaits you!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

P.S. If you need a review of Jane’s commercial, here’s the link.

Copyright © 2017 Terry Drew Karanen. All rights reserved.
This message may be re-printed, copied and/or forwarded without permission, as long as the content is not altered in any way and credit is given to the author.

“Only In New York”

I'm home for a week and using part of my time working on a new project I plan to have available to the public before the end of the year. In my research I ran across a piece I wrote in 2001. In light of the contentiousness of current times I thought you might enjoy it.

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

"Only In New York"

“Only in New York” is a phrase hard to explain unless a person has had the joy of living in Manhattan for any length of time. Yesterday I was taking the 1 train down to Midtown to run some errands. An older, black woman burst into our car right after I’d boarded the train, ran into my shoe with her over-filled shopping cart of worldly possessions and screamed at me, “MOVE YOUR GODDAMN FUCKING FOOT, ASSHOLE!”

Charming, I thought.

I reacted as any other New Yorker would:  I avoided her glance, moved my foot, turned up the volume on my CD player (Dixie Chicks, in case you wondered) and continued reading my book. I began mouthing the words I was reading so as to focus on my material rather than the political tirade upon which our homeless picture of ebony femininity had now embarked.

Okay, so when she got to that part about the evil white Devil in the White House I had to nod slightly (forgive the political commentary), but the truth was that this woman was becoming somewhat compelling. She was preaching and I suddenly realized I was the choir. I just had to be amazed at how focused she was on her message about politics, poverty, the rearing of children and healthcare for the elderly. No one else dared to look at her or respond to her, though snickers were abundant.

At 110th Street I turned off my CD player, replaced my book in my backpack (black, of course, as was my outfit — this IS Gotham after all!), and headed for the door — the one next to Miss Congeniality. “What’s this stop? 86th Street?” she hollered.

I looked down at her, the filthy clothes and the pieces of this and that which made up all her worldly possessions. Apparently, I saw something no one else did at the time. Her face opened and revealed something no one else saw.

I smiled at her, not a condescending smile, but a sincere and painless effort to show her affection. “No, my love”, I said, looking straight into her angry brown eyes, “It’s 103rd Street — you’ve got a few more stops to go.”

The anger peeled away, her face brightened and I saw the Christ in that dirty, brown face. “I love you” she said, looking up at me. I smiled back and said, “I love you, too! Now you have a blessed and wonderful day.”

As I walked off the train, she sat quietly, still beaming, with the majority of the eyes in the car on her, mouths slightly a gap, eyebrows raised. I love New York.

Copyright © 2001, 2017 Terry Drew Karanen. All rights reserved.

#DrTerryMakingSense
#IAN1
@TerryDKaranen

So MUCH To Complain About!

Have you got complaints? “Have I got complaints? You should only HAVE the problems I have!” It’s not enough that we have our own issues to deal with. On top of everything else there’s the constant stream of bad news coming to us from social media. What can we do?

First of all, we can stop complaining. I realize, quite acutely, that you may have someone in your life that has made bitching about everything into an art form. It’s not healthy. What we focus on increases in our life. Do we really want all these personal and global issues to get worse? Hardly.

There’s a balance, of course. We don’t turn a blind eye to what’s happening around us or in our personal lives. The balance comes from the discernment we exercise in what to handle ourselves, what to allow others to handle with our help, and what to let go of. Michael Michalko put it this way, “Change the way you speak, and change the way you think.”

That’s a form of the famous Ernest Holmes phrase, “Change your thinking, change your life.” Michalko, however, brings a excellent point to our attention. It’s one thing to think about some issue or desire. It’s a completely different thing to speak those thoughts. Not only are we thinking them, but we are hearing what we say; in doing so we’re reinforcing the thought. Additionally we are putting those thoughts out so that others hear us, and thereby take those thoughts into their consciousness as well.

Unity minister, Will Bowen, created the “Complaint Free World” several years ago. The challenge is to be complaint free in our speech for a full 30 days. The first time I took the challenge I was doing good to get through 30 minutes. But, with intense practice, patience and determination, I finally made it to 30 days.

During the last few weeks I have found myself doing a little complaining here and there. Okay. I’ll fess up. I’ve been bitching my fool head off, as my Grandma Esther would have said. I decided last week to once again stop complaining about things over which I have no control. That encompasses about 98.9 percent of what I see on social media.

Would you be willing to do what you can for your personal, family, community and global effort toward peace this week? Start by being a citizen of action, instead of reacting through the bitchy cycle so many have found themselves wrapped up in. It’s a nasty little hamster wheel you don’t need to be on.

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#IAN1
@TerryDKaranen

Copyright © 2017 Terry Drew Karanen. All rights reserved.

#Resist

Have you seen the hashtag, #Resist? I’ve been using it, but today a colleague of mine brought up an interesting question.

We are both part of a group of individuals who believe in being for something, as opposed to being against anything. How, he queried, can we “resist” if our focus is on being a positive force for good by acting, not reacting?

It was an interesting question, one that I contemplated for a moment or two. I found it most jarring at first, because I felt like my use up until now was suddenly suspect to criticism I thought just might be warranted. (That’s a great place to be, BTW, no matter how uncomfortable!)

Here’s what #Resist means for me:

I’m not resisting a person, place, ideology or thing. I don’t believe in being a doormat. But I’m not going to waste time trying to teach a pig to sing; it doesn’t work and annoys the pig. Here’s what I’m resisting:

  • I resist thinking I’m clueless. I’m dedicated to challenging myself to lead, instead of being led all the time, and frequently by persons, organizations and ideologies which are far less qualified to determine my good than I am.
  • I resist being afraid. I will not succumb to worrying about what could happen. I will be focused upon what is happening and what I can do about it.
  • I resist thinking that I don’t make a difference. Even if I never know how my actions affect others I know that by acting instead of reacting I move from victim consciousness to empowerment.
  • I resist the temptation to take on more than I can handle, and acknowledge with joy the things I can do.
  • I resist blaming others instead of taking responsibility for being the force of change.

It’s a growing list for me. I’m glad I got challenged because it’s helped me to re-enforce my commitment to excellence and in my purpose. We all have a choice to make about how to respond to adversity and conflict. How we choose to do so will make all the difference in our lives and health … and for our planet.

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#IAN1
@TerryDKaranen

Copyright © 2017 Terry Drew Karanen. All rights reserved.

The Blessing of Limitations

Recently I’ve written about having problems as part of experiencing our humanity. I’ve also brought up using disempowerment as a tool of empowering our lives.

Both of these topics have resulted in numerous emails or comments on social media. Most have applauded my stand, but there are a couple of people (in the most severe of criticisms) who think I have no right to be a minister, let alone one who is a religious scientist.

The ones who are fighting about ideas and accusing me in their comments are of no surprise in a world that is tenaciously holding on to ideas that no longer serve our species. The same fear we see today being used to divide our nation and world is the same unnecessary reaction some people may experience to words or ideas held sacrosanct, even though everyone agree “sumpin’ jus’ ain’t right.”

So, in keeping with speaking my mind – even if it stirs the pot – I offer you this week’s blog. Enjoy … or not … but if nothing else I hope it causes you to think about the topic in a new, refreshing and healing way!

With Love,
Terry

The Blessing of Limitations

Have you considered seeming limitations in your life as blessings? You may, like I have in the past, seen anything limiting in my life as something to be overcome or dissolved. Is there another way to view limitations?

While you may at first be unwilling to admit it – as was I! – limitations can show up looking like our best friend. How? The limitations to which we give power enable us to get out of an awful lot of situations without question. Instead of having the clarity to say that we don’t want to do something we conveniently find a limitation that we expect to go unchallenged.

“I’d LOVE to go with you,” we convincingly lie, having absolutely no desire to attend the six-hour Mahler marathon, “But you know I have my sick father to care for.” (We leave out the part about having on-call caregivers available to watch dad.)

“That opportunity sounds AMAZING,” we gush, “But the way my arthritis is acting up I’m sure I can’t. You know how it is to be getting old.” (We neglect to mention how much fun attending our granddaughter’s hip hop class was and dancing all afternoon with her.)GO38

Does citing these limitations sound more like excuses? They should. That’s exactly what they are. But the way we use these kinds of excuses (costumed to look like irrefutable reasons), pretty much ends any further discussion. People are less inclined to challenge someone who has decided to live in a state of self-imposed victimization. Why, if we’re lucky, we might even garner a bit of pity in the process. Bonus points!

NOT!

We are better than this. We don’t have to use perceived limitations as excuses to avoid telling the truth. We can empower ourselves by having the hutzpah to tell it like it is for us with love and compassion for the other person.

So does limitation have a place in our lives, especially if we are of the mind that we are unlimited spirit beings having a spiritual experience in a human body? I believe they do! Entrepreneur, writer, philanthropist and unshakable optimist, Marie Forleo, tells us how and why:

Limited choices in your day can lead to limitless freedom in your life.

Take this sage advice into your day by using it to map out your game plan for tomorrow. If we avoid focusing on our true purpose we will easily get bogged down in the many choices being thrust upon us by social media, well-meaning friends and what we perceive to be societal obligations.

Start today using limitations in a positive, productive way, not to stop you from doing anything, but to empower you by freeing up time and energy. Then you’ll be more available to do the very things you came here to planet Earth to share with us!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AWorldThatWorksForEveryone

Terry Drew Karanen © 2016

Got Problems?

Okay, so first of all, the graphic here is a kinda true! Ernest Holmes taught us that our reality is a real as we need it to be. The question here is how "real" do we want our problems to be?

Do you have problems? “OH NO!!!” screams the metaphysician in horror. “We NEVER have problems! We have ‘challenges’ or ‘opportunities,’ but NEVER problems! That’s so NEGATIVE!”

Reality check. We in New Thought and metaphysics need to realize how afraid some in our movement have become of this little word. What IS a “problem” anyway?

9 BlogWhile we may avoid them or try to admit they don’t exist, problems pop up and ignoring them can be disastrous. Here’s the skinny on “problem,” according to the Oxford Dictionary:

A matter or situation regarded as unwelcome or harmful and needing to be dealt with and overcome, or an inquiry starting from given conditions to investigate or demonstrate a fact, result, or law.

It’s not the end of the world and having one doesn’t mean someone takes away your minister, practitioner or spiritual counseling license. Lighten up, folks! We didn’t choose to float on pink clouds and giggle all day. We chose to live in the corporeal realm here on a planet with exquisite joys and annoying pains. There are now more than seven billion other spirits having a spiritual experience on earth and it’s gonna get messy at times!

Don’t be afraid of the word “problem.” It doesn’t mean half of what some people would like you to believe. Other words that can be used are difficulty, trouble, worry or complication if you’re that terrified of a seven-letter word. And, it can also be a challenge as well as an opportunity.

But to tell someone, with a giddy smile on our face, so excited that we’re about to wet ourselves, who’s just been given a diagnosis of stage 5 cancer, or who’s just found out their house burned down, that they have an “opportunity for growth” is just plain wrong.

It’s unloving.

It’s unkind.

And, it’s cruel.

This is NOT the way to enhance The Global Vision:  A World That Works for Everyone. So what can we do? Love them. Support them. Refrain from sympathy and exercise empathy. Be there for them.

And above all, pray with them to know the Truth. This week’s theme is, “Communion With God.” While prayer is one of the ways we can do this, there are numerous other ways as well. Some of these other methods will be of interest to those reading who are agnostic or atheist, as there’s virtually no reason to commune with an entity one thinks doesn’t care or who doesn’t exist.

Throughout the week over at the Facebook® page for Spirit, Mind and Body Foundation we’ll be looking at embracing spiritual guidance – both guidance from what appears outside us as well as what is already available in our own consciousness.

Returning to our topic here about problems:  Do you have any? Probably. We all have situations in our lives that we’d rather not tackle. Often those issues are brought about through means that seem totally out of our control. Either way, there’s a fool-proof way to handle them.

  • Acknowledge the problem.
  • Approach the situation like a medical triage unit – figure out what MUST be done right away, what SHOULD be done and what COULD be done.
  • Do what MUST be done.
  • Delegate authority and/or responsibility for what someone else could do for you.
  • Get professional or experienced help if you need it.

We don’t have to tough it out when stuff happens and it’s going to. Like everything else, however, how we deal with the problem will determine whether it gets resolved quickly and easily, or whether it gets morphed into a huge issue that could affect our health, wealth and well-being.

Like with everything else in life, the choice is ours. How will you choose to handle your next problem?

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AworldThatWorksForEveryone

Do You Want to Be Alone?

Theme for the week of April 11:
You Cannot Disconnect From Life

Affirmation:
We see a world in which we live and grow as One Global Family
that respects and honors the interconnectedness of all life.

Do you ever want to get away from it all? As complicated as our modern lives can get at times it’s no wonder if you do. We all deserve a break from the daily grind. Or not! We could talk about when we let ourselves get into jobs or lives that are a grind, but that’s not our topic.

11Apparently, Greta Garbo has been mis-quoted for decades – that happens a lot more than we’d like to admit! She didn’t say she wanted to be alone; she said she wanted to be let alone. There IS a difference!

I once heard a saying, “Wherever you go there you are.” In other words, we can't run away from our problems, at least not for very lone. The same is true if we try to completely disconnect from life. It’s not possible. Sure we can go camping for the weekend in the woods, or go completely off the grid, but we are still interconnected with all life around us.

To some that might feel like we can never be alone with our thoughts. To others it might be a comfort to know we always have the support and energy of others with us. How do you feel about it?

It can be exhausting if we think we have to do it all, go it alone or tough it out. As long as we can get our ego to suspend judgment, asking for help or working with others provides something that we all crave on one level – connection. The physical, social, philosophical and sexual connections we experience nurture and sustain us as we move through our spiritual experience in our human forms.

Over the next week on the Facebook® page of Spirit, Mind and Body Foundation we’ll be discussing how to increase our awareness of the interconnectedness of all life. And, we’ll look at new ways of using our connections to have truly amazing lives. Join us!

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,
Terry

#DrTerryMakingSense
#TheGlobalVision
#AWorldThatWorksForEveryone

Divine Compassion

Our thoughts become things. Most religious and spiritual beliefs teach this concept in one form or another. But what happens when tragedy or harm occurs in our life?

Here’s what does NOT work: “That’s horrible! What do you think was in your consciousness to cause THAT?”

NOT cool … or kewl, either!

I know because that’s what someone said to me the day after I received a gunshot wound in my face over twenty years ago. If hadn’t still been in shock I’d have probably slapped the snot out of her. My ministers at the time offered to do just that, though I declined to give them her name.

We are not here to analyze why something has happened in the lives of others. It’s compassionseriously none of our business. The 224 passengers and crew of the recent Russian Metrojet airliner accident didn’t have some collective death wish. Neither did the six million Jews and the five million non-Jews who died during the Holocaust.

We are here to love one another.

We are here to comfort one another.

We are here to be of service to one another.

Ellen Debenport recently put it this way:

I … understand the need for God with skin on, and that’s who we can be to each other. It’s who we are anyway, the divine in human form.

At the same time we must insure that our well-meaning empathy does not deteriorate into a form of sympathy and pity. We are not here to encourage or foster a victim consciousness, one that is completely disempowered of any change or healing. If we are to be of service to others then we remember we are each “the divine in human form,” as capable of change, growth and self-respect.

I invite you this week to consider yourself as “the divine in human form” on a deeper level than ever before. Not from a place of authority and judgment, but from the mindfulness of divine compassion. How might you be able to be of service to another this week? What might you say to someone in pain that you yourself would like to hear if the situation was reversed?

In Spirit, Truth and Playfulness,

Terry