i am

"Who could be so lucky? Who comes to a lake for water and sees the reflection of the moon." Rumi


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Big Mama

“Big Mama has three sons of her own, Christopher, Brennan, and Sam. The Reed family experienced hard times of its own after being abandoned by the boys’ father when Christopher was only one month old. “We lived in a fish market for a while,” says Sam, “so we know what it’s like to have no home.” Brennan added, “Our experience made us realize how important it is to help others in need.” All three of Big Mama’s sons help out in many ways, from directing the Boys’ Step Team and running errands to driving neighborhood kids to school each day.” [Team of Life]

Last year, I had the pleasure of honoring Big Mama with a poem during the tenth anniversary Christmas toy drive and fundraiser for her nonprofit organization, Team of Life. Their mission is to simply give back. They do this by becoming involved in the lives of youth in the community. Many have no stable homes, some have been school drop-outs, others seek for parental guidance / role models, etc… they also provide transportation when needed. They mentor and donate school supplies, clothing articles, food, toys and provide shelter for those who need it.

This year, The International Holistic Center, whose partnered with Team of Live since last year, has asked me to recite my poem once again for Big Mama, tonight! I am delighted to be part of this event once again.

Here is a photo taken from last year’s event which was printed in The Sun Sentinel Newspaper. I am the one in pink, on the bottom of the page.

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And the poem as follows…

Like the might and size of an eagle

As it soars through the Heavens,

So is your heart as is spreads abundantly

To become an extension of our future.

Dismantled yet shaken you were not.

Your passion to battle misfortune and betrayal 

Kept the sun shining through your overcast days.

Your brave soul and will to survive made you stronger,

And here you are:  a mighty woman.

You carry the titles of

Mother, father, mentor

Activist, leader – an angel even.

You. Are. Powerful.

Because you saw the forest for the trees.

See, you possess a green thumb

In this garden of life where our children

Run wild and resources are scarce.

But you aspired to inspire our youth

Through your blood, sweat and prayers.

Only truth has transpired from your work.

Only good has been reaped

From every seed that you’ve sowed.

Only pure growth can come about

From someone who devotes as much time,

Effort and love at the drop of a dime,

Such as you.

You. Are. Love.

Because you’ve whistled past the graveyard.

Like a minstrel in the spotlight,

You are a blessing to life.

How can one conceive the immensity

That is your heart?

You’ve made yourself readily available

To kids whom others have overlooked.

You’ve tended to their necessities;

And despite being misunderstood,

You’ve shown compassion through your interaction.

Adversity was of no hindrance to the faith you gave.

Big Mama, through prayer your strength transcends.

Your community outreach rises above preaching

For you’ve centered your teachings on the quality of life –

On dreaming in grand scales and seeking truth.

You’ve introduced meaning to the existence of our youth.

Fortunate are those to be part of you.

Thank you for being Big Mama,

Thank you for being Team of Life!

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Adding to “How Standardization Screws You Over”

The illustration in the reblogged post below reminds me of Albert Einstein’s quote that says, “Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid.”

With that being said, I looked up the meaning of standardization on Wikipedia.

Standardization: the process of developing and implementing technical standards.

What does that even mean? Do kids really know why they take all these standardized tests? All they’ve been brainwashed to believe is that passing those tests is the only way to secure a future. Now, what does that mean? If you asked me, our children are being set up for failure. Sure there are exceptions, but aren’t there exceptions to everything else in life? Kids are programmed to think a certain way, and after they’ve reached adulthood and begin to experience what life outside of school can be, they realize that it was all BS. And then there are others who feel like failures because they couldn’t comply with what was expected of them.

All these new technologies and gadgets and things are great, I guess. But what do they really prove? Changing the education paradigm right now would be the real innovation in the recent history of man. There are so many things that aren’t flowing in our education system, and as a consequence, kids grow into adulthood with a conditioned state of mind, lacking the proper skills and inner knowledge necessary that allows a person to just be.

While I can agree with almost everything stated in Inspiration Avenue’s post, I have a slightly different opinion on the things our children should be learning. For example, connecting with nature, in my opinion, is such a crucial part of life, period.  We ARE nature. We, like everything else on this Earth, are made up of energy, and if we saw the correlation between us and all other living things, we’d have a more conscious outlook on life. Why not have more nature field-trips, have class outdoors more often, experience nature at its core?

Nutrition is also important.  Unfortunately, we have forgotten what it’s like to eat real foods. I speak from the western world because that’s where I reside. If we taught proper nutrition in school, as opposed to the watered-down , ever-changing food pyramids and lobbied versions of what we should be eating, the health problems that are now exponentially worsening in our society wouldn’t be a major issue.

Also, the arts shouldn’t be a privilege. Charter schools and magnet schools offer great arts programs. Regular public schools offer an hour, maybe, and I’m not sure if it’s only by election. When cutting back on school programs, the arts or physical education are the ones that should least be considered for removal. Being creative and physically active has more benefits for a child than math, science and history combined. Kids love to express themselves, and sitting in a classroom for 8 hours a day with their little eyes stuck on a chalk/marker board, book, or computer screen represses all other healthy functions. It is said that creativity is enhanced by an increased use of the whole brain. Music, writing, drawing, sculpting, acting, singing, dancing… all these creative activities enhance every part of the brain. It allows children to tap into their inner selves and experiment, learn, create and be.

While learning other subjects like the ones mentioned in the reblogged article could be of great use, I firmly believe that those having to do more with our nature will make more sense and be more beneficial to every individual. These natural skills, when enhanced, can make such a difference in a person’s overall self; and in turn, would be of greater collective value.

**I know this post is already long, but I highly recommend reading my previous post of the reblogged article and watching the video at the end of this post. you won’t be disappointed. Blessings – Moon**

“This animate was adapted from a talk given at the RSA by Sir Ken Robinson, world-renowned education and creativity expert and recipient of the RSA’s Benjamin Franklin award.”

I found out about the video through Ideastheisia’s blog some months ago. His blog is also worthy of following.