Paying It Forward Video Series #1 – Watching YouTube Ads

We live in a world where the mainstream is actively seeking to squeeze out independent content creators – especially those taking a different look at important topics.

Here’s something small we can all do to help our favorite YouTube Channels.

 

Follow your bliss. Experience your bliss. Become your bliss.

Ray

Ray Davis is the founder of The Affirmation Spot, co-founder of 6 Sense Media, and author of Anunnaki Awakening: Revelation and The Power To Be You.

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Memorial Day Post: We The People Owe Veterans a Double Responsibility

Thought of the Day
“You are the leaven which binds together the entire fabric of our national system of defense. From your ranks come the great captains who hold the nation’s destiny in their hands the moment the war tocsin sounds. The Long Gray Line has never failed us. Were you to do so, a million ghosts in olive drab, in brown khaki, in blue and gray, would rise from their white crosses thundering those magic words: Duty, Honor, Country.This does not mean that you are war mongers. On the contrary, the soldier, above all other people, prays for peace, for he must suffer and bear the deepest wounds and scars of war.”

~ General Douglas MacArthur – Duty, Honor, Country speech

Memorial Day. In The United States, it is the day we set aside to honor those who lost their lives previous wars and to honor those risking their lives today. This is as it should be. When people are willing to put themselves on the line for the good of others – in military service or other endeavors – we have an obligation to respect that.

To all veterans, THANK YOU for your service! I hope all Americans will spend a few moments today contemplating the very real sacrifices these people have made for all of us.

WE THE PEOPLE owe our service members and veterans more than their support in wartime and even more than their honor in death. We owe it to them to compel our leaders to put their lives at risk only when it is necessary and hold them accountable when they don’t. We owe them our commitment not allow their lives to be needlessly risked.

Going back to the mid 1960s, WE THE PEOPLE have been derelict in our duty.

MacArthur makes an important point here. He is speaking to West Point cadets. He reminds them that they must be ready when called to defend the country. However, he places a caveat on that. He declares that soldiers above all are not war mongers and pray for peace.

The first few lines to the preamble of the Constitution read:

we_the_peopleWE THE PEOPLE of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”

WE THE PEOPLE and the Constitution are very important to the calculations of war and peace.

While there are times, when war is unfortunately unavoidable at the current level of human development, it is necessary far less often than it is proposed as “the only solution” by our leaders. The honest truth is that most wars can be avoided if WE THE PEOPLE hold leaders accountable to us and to the Constitution before, during, and after the decision to fight them.

US soldierThe soldiers of the past that we remember and the soldiers of the present who we cannot forget rely on us – you and me – to make sure that when they are sent into battle it is truly to defend our country. You see, they are bound to follow the orders of the Commander-in-Chief. They count on us to be a check and a balance to that person’s judgment that war is necessary. WE THE PEOPLE are responsible for holding our leaders in check FOR our troops.

Remember the President of the United States is the Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces not WE THE PEOPLE. The President is our servant not our boss.

I’ve heard so many journalists, especially before the current war, say something to the effect that “We must support our Commander-in-Chief.”

The Founding Fathers would have scoffed at such nonsense. They endowed WE THE PEOPLE and the people’s representatives in Congress with all kinds of tools to prevent this “Commander-in-Chief” syndrome from taking root or thriving.

Examples include Congressional Funding of wars, states raising troops, Congressional declaration of war, impeachment, regular elections. WE THE PEOPLE and the Congress, have unwisely and unconstitutionally ceded these powers to the Commander-in-Chief.

When this power rests in the hands of one person who may not be questioned we might as well call the president Caesar because that is a title worthy of such unwarranted power.

War, it turns out, often benefits the elite who start them, but only rarely benefits the average citizen who must fight them. Leaders make a name for themselves by engaging in war.

Let’s do a little test. Grover Cleveland, Chester Arthur, or Howard Taft. How many Americans don’t even know the names? How many who do know the names could tell you anything about their presidencies?

Franklin Roosevelt, Abraham Lincoln, Woodrow Wilson, Harry Truman, Teddy Roosevelt, Dwight Eisenhower; most Americans readily recognize their names. They were either war presidents or came to prominence through their participation in a war.

War makes presidents historically noteworthy. They say the first thing lost in war is the truth. That’s because many wars are started by mistruths that play on the fears, greed, or prejudices of the population. WE THE PEOPLE must become more wise and less easily manipulated. WE THE PEOPLE must demand better evidence before our troops go into harm’s way.

For it is our sons, our daughters, our brothers, and fathers, and mothers who will be memorialized on future Memorial Days. Let us make sure that we only permit that sacrifice for the right reasons.

WE THE PEOPLE owe it to the troops in the field today, those who have sacrificed in the past, and those who will be asked to do so in the future to make our leaders accountable. Congress must re-establish its Constitutional authority in matters of war. The people must think logically and not allow themselves to become the victims of their own emotions.

Today politicians who currently hold high office and those seeking high office will offer solemn and respectful speeches for the fallen.

What WE THE PEOPLE need from our leaders is not speeches in front of white crosses or banks of flags.

What WE THE PEOPLE need, indeed demand, from our leaders is more than feigned soberness about putting young men and women on the battlefield.

What WE THE PEOPLE need from our leaders is not heroic speeches one day a year, but a commitment to taking care of veterans when they come home.

What WE THE PEOPLE need from our leaders is not stirring rhetoric, but leadership that owns up to the government’s responsibility for soldiers exposed to Agent Orange, the still unknown causes of Gulf War Syndrome, and this war’s version depleted uranium. Instead, we have been given 30+ years (starting with Agent Orange) of denial and calling the people who made these sacrifices the politicians give speeches about “crazy” for claiming that their exposure to a proven weapons grade pesticide might have impaired their bodies.

The unfortunate truth is that while politicians are giving speeches today, millions of veterans are forced to live with the memory of things they should never have seen at 19 or 20 years old and things they should never have done in places they should never have been.

An empowered WE THE PEOPLE must be prepared to question our leaders at every turn, demand answers at every opportunity, and punish leaders when they abuse their solemn duty to prevent war.

WE THE PEOPLE must not be cheerleaders for war, but guardians against its unwarranted use. War is a disease that humans have lived with throughout time. In fact, its longevity and it ubquitousness are used as excuses for not stopping it by many. You’ve heard it – the “We’ve always had war and we always will” mentality.

The suffering war causes the soldiers and the victims is horrific and inhumane in the most ideal of situations. WE THE PEOPLE should view war like a hideous plague among us. We worry about bird flu and other calamities that may never befall us and over which we have little control. While WE THE PEOPLE allow the scourge of war – something that is happening and over which we have ultimate control – to go on.

WE THE PEOPLE need to support and extoll the value of the peacemakers as well as the warriors. Jesus said, “Blessed are the peacemakers.” Buddha added, “Few know that our purpose in this world is to live in harmony. Those who become aware of this cease their quarrels immediately.”

WE THE PEOPLE need to demand that our leaders be peacemakers first and warmakers a distant, distant second.

WE THE PEOPLE may have to celebrate a day in memory of the fallen for some time to come, but if we live up to our other responsibility, we can at least do so with a clearer conscience that we did all we could to prevent and minimize the need for our solidiers and their families to sacrifice so much.

WE THE PEOPLE need to take General MacArthur’s words into accout and be the defenders of our troops just as they are our defenders. For today is not only a time for memory of the fallen, but of how WE THE PEOPLE have failed them.

Follow your bliss. Experience your bliss. Become your bliss.

Ray Davis is the founder of The Affirmation Spot. He’s spent more than 25 years studying personal development and especially writing, recording, and using affirmations to achieve his goals. His eBook – The Power to Be You – offers 416 life-changing and original quotes, ideas, and affirmations to take you to new levels of achievement and reflection.

anunnaki_cover_full_colorAnunnaki Awakening: Revelation, Ray’s first novel,  is turning heads and opening minds. Humanity’s past is checkered, secret, and dangerous.

White House Correspondent Maria Love is on to the story of her life and with the help of an Anunnaki leader seeks to unravel and reveal history’s biggest conspiracy. The Awakening has begun!

The Financial Crisis and What We Can Do About It – The Affirmation Spot for Thursday September 18, 2008

Even in the face of great difficulty we have within us an ability cope, overcome, and succeed.

I’ve written a number of articles recently about going beyond positive thinking and happy thoughts on to empowered thinking. Empowered thinking includes being informed among its three elements. Being informed is about honestly assessing a situation – not candy-coating it – so that you can make sound decisions and take strong actions to deal with it.

We are quickly approaching a moment when being informed means looking honestly at the economic situation we are facing and recognizing that we must engage the other two aspects of empowered thinking – positive thinking and committed action.

The Situation

This evening a Wall Street Journal article declared the current financial crisis the worst since the 1930s. While the signs of trouble have been apparent for a couple of years, such statements can no longer be considered hyperbole against the backdrop of recent events.

  • Share prices plummeting
  • Home prices plummeting
  • The dollar plummeting
  • Companies exchanging debt and bets on debt and counting it as revenue on their balance sheets
  • Financial powerhouses gone in a day.
  • Great American corporations like GM and Ford hanging on for dear life.
  • A government already trillions of dollars in debt and borrowing every day to fight wars around the world acting as though it can bail everybody out.
All of this and our “leaders” still can’t bring themselves to even utter the word “recession”. The two major party presidential candidates Barack Obama and John McCain – awash in money and influence from Wall Street firms – are trying to “get their messages right” on the economy. They want to put the best face on it or make sure that the other side gets the blame for it.

The bottom line is that the people we elected to protect our interests have not done so. Companies we trusted to be responsible with our savings and our investments have not so either. And, we have all been guilty of thinking that perpetually rising home values and easy credit are a norm.

Let me be clear. Wall Street turned into Las Vegas over the past few years while both parties in Washington turned a blind eye and even poured gas on the fire. Bluntly, Wall Street bet our collective house and lost. Now they are coming to the government (the American taxpayer) and saying, “You have to save us because the whole ship will sink, if you don’t”.

So far the bailout has nearly doubled the stated federal government debt and its not over yet. When the federal government owes money guess who that means really owes it – yep the taxpayers.

Some in Congress are finally responding against the move by the Treasury Department and The Federal Reserve to rescue the financial giants. That is a good, if belated, thing. After all, The US Constitution clearly gives only Congress the power to appropriate government funds. Here we have the executive branch and the central bank overstepping their Constitutional authority. Congress needs to act and act swiftly to stop these actions.

What We Can Do

Being informed allows us to use positive thinking and committed action to create change. There are several things we can do right now and several things we can learn for the future from this situation.

  • Don’t panic – markets are all about human psychology – i.e. “the herd mentality”. In good times, the herd grazes until it is full. In bad times, the herd gets spooked and does things as stupid as running off a cliff. When panic takes over a bad situation becomes a spiraling cycle of negativity. We need to stay calm and carefully consider our moves.
  • Demand Congress assert itself – Congress has the Constitutional authority to appropriate funds – not the executive branch and not The Federal Reserve. Congress has direct responsibility to the people and they need to reassert that Constitutional authority.
  • Demand oversight – we probably thought our government was doing due diligence in overseeing the financial markets. Purely and simply it was not. We need to demand a return to sensible oversight of the markets and not double-talk from politicians beholden to those markets.
  • Reduce or eliminate debt – with markets and credit tightening, it is not going to be a good time to owe people money. We should all do what we can to reduce or eliminate as much debt as possible.
  • Demand justice – people who have been irresponsible and even criminal in bringing about this crisis need to held accountable.
  • Decentralize the economy – this is paramount. The keys to our economic fate lie in too few hands and in hands that do not have the peoples’ best interest at heart. This must change. I’ve had recent dialogue with a number of people promoting a new wave of entrepreneurialism. The idea of independent business ownership has given way to giant box stores and massive government and extra-governmental organizations (i.e. The Federal Reserve) managing the economy. This has taken peoples’ economic destinies out of their hands and given it over to these entities.
  • Control what we can control – we cannot control the macro situation, but we can do everything in our power to make things better as we can affect them. Evaluate your own situation and take positive steps forward towards expecting the best and preparing for the worst.
  • Focus on the best possible outcome – we can align our thoughts with the best possible outcome for ourselves and the nation. We severely underestimate the power of our individual and collective thoughts to alter the reality we receive. If we focus on the best possible outcome that is what we can expect to experience.
We may be in for some stormy seas in the short term. The key is that with empowered thinking – positive thinking, being informed, and taking committed action – we can change course and push towards a better future for us all.
Stay inspired!
Ray

Time for Humanity to Remove Our “Training Wheels”

Our society needs to be about developing better people not better laws. As long as we ignore the former, the latter will not matter.

Laws and the governments that write them are training wheels for the development of people. When you were learning how to ride a bike you needed the training wheels to keep you steady. The expectation was not that you would continue to need the training wheels forever.

The best preserved of ancient law codes is the Code of Hammurabi created around 1760 B.C. Since then we have had the 10 Commandments, the Buddhist Noble Eightfold Path, the Magna Carta, the United States Constitution, and many other secular and religious attempts to help humans behave properly.

Even in this brief catalog of these attempts, we cover every major culture on the earth and a span of nearly 4000 years.

The fact is that we can try to reform from the outside for another 4000 years and I predict we would find humanity in the same boat. Reform must come from within. We must look at ourselves and the world with new eyes. We must commit to wanting something different, something more for ourselves, for our children, and even for others.

That’s a difficult, very adult journey and there are powerful arguments against it.

Some say that human beings simply are not capable of that kind of reform; that we are victims of a design flaw that forever condemns us to our current status. It’s our nature, they claim, and it cannot change.

Others say that these are fine academic concepts, but they do not address safety and security issues. They point out that there are dangerous people in the world and we must be protected. We must have government and laws, they argue, to protect us from criminals, terrorists, and bad people.

There is some validity to both of these arguments. The problem is we are not addressing the root causes and so we are condemning ourselves to a repeating and self-reinforcing cycle.

Do the laws protect us? Have they ever? 4000 years….have all the laws and government that have evolved solved the root problem? Since Hammurabi first enshrined his code government has been one of the great growth industries on this planet. We’ve had monarchs and despots, democratically elected governments and collective governments.

These secular systems have attempted to establish government as the arbiter between misbehaving and unreformed people. They are band-aids – an attempt to create some justice and peace in an imperfect situation.

The one thing they all share in common is that they have failed to create a happy, peaceful world full of empowered people pursuing their hearts’ content. Instead, governments have been the organizing forces behind wars over resources, religious beliefs, and for sheer domination and control. They have used their power to increase dependence upon their existence.

At least the spiritual attempts have recognized that reforming the person is the central issue in the equation. Both the 10 Commandments and the Noble Eightfold Path focus on prohibiting or encouraging types of behavior that are destructive to the person and the society.

Yet, they are still external attempts to enforce what must be an internal process. WE THE PEOPLE must choose to think and act in new ways. We must recognize that all change in the world and in our lives begins within us. No government or religious institution can substitute for our own desire to have a different world.

Am I advocating the overthrow of government and religion? No. They both still serve useful purposes at our current state of readiness for self-realization. Religion and government will never be completely obsolete, but their role will change and their control will be lessened.

Their top-down, centralized control approach is a relic of a previous era and must be replaced by a decentralized, democratic approach to life on Earth.

While many individuals are starting to realize what is possible, the overwhelming majority still live unaware of what lies within them.

I believe we are at a state where we can begin the transition away from the Age of the Institution and towards the Age of the Person. As more people begin to flower into their potential, this process will accelerate until we find our world in a place we never expected.

This change begins in you. No one else can do it for you. No one else can know the things you need to open in your heart and your mind to convert these potentialities into realities.

The world is changing and now we must change! Off with the training wheels! It’s time to see who we truly are.

Stay inspired!

Ray

Ray Davis is the Founder of The Affirmation Spot and focuses on empowering minds to think positively, achieve goals, and live dreams.

anunnaki_cover_full_color“My mind is officially blown!” “I’m loving this book. There’s only one problem. I was so into the story that I missed by bus stop.” “I need Book 2. Now!”

These are some of comments from readers about Ray’s new speculative fiction novel – Anunnaki Awakening: Revelation. This fictional novel follows White House Correspondent Maria Love on her quest to learn the truth of human origins and the Anunnaki’s role in our emergence. She discovers their intervention never stopped, but can she act quickly enough to change the destiny of two worlds? Author Graham Hancock said, “We are a species with amnesia.” Let your Awakening begin today.

What Does God Look Like? – The Affirmation Spot for Saturday March 8, 2008


ray_launchpad.jpgWhat Ray’s reading right now:

April and I are reading A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose. This is the latest Oprah’s Book Club selection. Oprah and the author Eckhart Tolle are hosting a 10-week online course covering this book. The next session is Monday March 10 at 9:00 eastern, 8:00 central time in the U.S. This week’s session covers chapter 2. You can register for free at Oprah.com


Download 2 Affirmations, Get 1 Free!

Take your positive thoughts with you wherever you go. During the month of March Download any two mp3 affirmations from The Affirmation Spot.com and get a third mp3 affirmation free. There are no limits! Simply type the word “blog” into the coupon field at checkout. Thanks for getting your audio affirmations at The Affirmation Spot! Click here to view, hear excerpts, or download affirmations.  


woman_relax_eyesclose.jpgMost Saturdays I pose a question to The Affirmation Spot readers. My goal is to give you all chance to share your ideas. Communication is two ways, not one.  I hope to keep the questions interesting and provacative.

Our whole business therefore in this life is to restore to health the eye of the heart whereby God may be seen.”

~ St. Augustine 

Today’s question is:

When you close your eyes and visualize God, what does God look like in your mind?

Click here to leave a comment describing what God looks like to you.

Be peaceful Be prosperous!

Ray

Giving Barack Obama His Due – The Affirmation Spot for Tuesday February 26, 2008


Thank you for visiting The Affirmation Spot. Your comments on the blog or this article are always welcome. Please click here to comment on today’s blog.




ray_launchpad.jpgWhat Ray’s reading right now:

A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose (Oprah’s Book Club, Selection 61)




March Affirmation Sale!

Beginning February 28 Download any two affirmations during March from The Affirmation Spot.com and get a third affirmation free. There are no limits! You can download 20 and get 10 free. Simply type the word “blog” into the coupon field at checkout. Thanks for getting your audio affirmations at The Affirmation Spot!



obama.gifBarack Obama. His name seems to be on everyone’s lips these days. He has definitely been successful in (ugly marketing phrase coming) “creating buzz”.

Four years ago when he gave the keynote address at the Democratic National Convention there was talk that he might one day be a strong presidential candidate. No one anticipated it coming in this election cycle.

Afterall, Hillary Clinton was to be the next Democratic nominee and nothing in heaven or earth was going to stop her, if you listened to all the experts.

The experts did not anticipate Barack Obama. Mr. Obama is an outstanding orator. He is one of those rare speakers who can take a crowd and lift their spirits and raise their hopes. As he sweeps across the country like a Spring twister, he is doing just that to audience after audience.

What now seems inevitable is that Hillary Clinton has run into a buzzsaw of hope and optimism. The people are demanding something new and Senator Clinton only has more of the old to offer. Obama has taken 11 primaries and caucuses in a row and seems poised to leap Hillary Clinton’s Ohio-Texas firewall on his way to an historic nomination.

In previous posts, I have made clear my support for Ron Paul in this election cycle. His no nonsense and truthful description of the problems facing the United States are, in my mind, the best way forward. The Democratic big-government prescription proposed by both Obama and Clinton (as well as the big empire prescription proposed by McCain and mainline Republicans) seems to defy the Federal Reserves’ ability to print the money fast enough.

Still, I’ve listened and watched Mr. Obama with growing interest. He really does have some highly admirable characteristics as a speaker and a motivator. Many of us working in the field of human motivation and inspiration could take master lessons from him.

As Obama is now famous for saying, “Words really do matter.” People do need more voices out there offering the promise of a better tomorrow. Obama is filling a need for our nation right now. We have been desperate in recent years for a voice of hope and he is delivering. We’ve been existing on a steady diet of fear and more fear. That is toxic for a person and toxic for a nation.

Obama’s latest transgression, that has the establishment in both parties grimacing, is that he might actually talk to people on our “no talk” list. On this count, I am cheering. You cannot have peace or prosperity in the world when there are people you refuse to converse with. It is a ridiculous old line stance and Obama is rightly promising a new approach.

Barack Obama’s success, I believe, can be attributed to the fact that he is spreading rays of hope across the countryside. Even many Republicans now regard the Bush administration as years spent in the proverbial wilderness. Bringing hope in this envrionment is no small feat and deserves tremendous thanks. People are responding to Obama – the man – like flowers to the coming of Spring.

It is unfortunate that Barack believes government is the source of that hope. But for that one flaw, he might be the real deal. If we had a cabinet level position for motivation or inspiration, I think Barack Obama should be confirmed 100-0 by the Senate. There’s an idea – Secretary of Inspiration.

I wish Barack Obama only well. There is an increasing possibility that he could be the next President of the United States. From a domestic policy standpoint, that worries me. He seems a little nebulous on his position to undue the Constitutional damage created in the last few years. His spending proposals simply are not realistic given our monetary situation.

He does offer hope of a new direction in foreign policy. That is a positive that brings hope to millions. I hope he will follow through on those commitments.

However, I want to give him his due. He has added a positive perspective to this year’s election. For that, I salute him and offer my gratitude.

Be peaceful Be positive!

Ray

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What is Wisdom? – Saturday Survey Question for February 22, 2008




ray_launchpad.jpg

What Ray’s reading right now:

The Power of Kindness: The Unexpected Benefits of Leading a Compassionate Life




Today’s affirmation is:


“I cultivate the wisdom gained through my experiences and share it to benefit the world.”



hands.gif
The Saturday Positive Thinking Survey gives readers of The Affirmation Spot an opportunity to express their views on a survey question related to positive thinking or positive change.









This week’s question

Dictionary.com defines wisdom as “the quality or state of being wise; knowledge of what is true or right coupled with just judgment as to action; sagacity, discernment, or insight.”What is your practical definition of wisdom and where do you does your wisdom come from?


Your Answer


Share your wisdom by sharing your thoughts here.

Be Peaceful Be prosperous!

Ray

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