One Strike Zone or Having a Moral Compass – Day 279 of 365 Days to a Better You

Whether you believe in astrology or not, I am the very embodiment of my sun sign. Being a Libra, I’m cursed with the perpetual need for balance, justice, and fairness. I mean, heck, our symbol is the scales, right?

My brand of justice is not harsh or judgmental. It is, however, fair to a fault. I call it having one strike zone. Others might call it having a consistent moral compass.

In the games of baseball and softball, there’s something call a strike zone. It’s the rule-defined area above home plate and between the knees and shoulders of each batter where a strike will be called on the batter whether he swings or not. It’s the same for each, batter based on his or her height.

I use a similar principle when I evaluate ideas, political positions, or moral actions. My strike zone for your words and actions is the same whether I like you or agree with you or not. My strike zone isn’t expanded for people I like and contracted for people I don’t. My view is that would be gross hypocrisy on my part.

Experience, though tells me not every operates that way. For many people, it’s hard to separate their personal feelings about a person or idea from the person or idea. Further, they tend to give those they like a massive ethical strike zone, while granting opponents a tiny or even non-existent strike zone.

You know these people. Their religion has all the truth. Their political party is always right and virtuous and the opposition party wrong and evil; even when we’re talking about actions that are precisely the same. The call that goes against their sports team is always wrong and the one that worked in their favor is always right.

You must know that for we Libras, this is practically human malpractice. LOL. Beyond my personal distaste for the inability to be objective, in keeping with my Libra credo, it’s very damaging to our society and out individual lives.

This mindset allows:

  1. “Our” corruption to persist, while “Their” corruption is pursued to the bitter end.
  2. People to be harsh, cold, and uncaring about people not in their circle of agreement.
  3. Us to miss good ideas and adopt bad ones because of WHO proposed it.
  4. Division in a way that makes dialogue, compromise, and resolving big issues nearly impossible.

Sound like any society you know? All of this occurs in an environment when people see only sides and feel a need to defend their side even to the point of absurdity, while attacking the other side to the same extreme degree.

My goal is not to point fingered in this post. If you’re a Libra or Libra-like in this way, you’re probably not contributing to this. However, if you see yourself, your social media interactions, or personal interactions in what I’m saying, I’d humbly ask you to reassess.

It doesn’t mean you have to lose your passion. I’m one of the most passionate people I know. I simply refuse to allow my passion to stop me from seeing the other sides in a debate, giving them their point while taking mine, and working toward harmony and solutions instead of just another partisan argument where tired old talking points are trotted out in lieu of working toward an answer.

One strike zone…it’s where justice, integrity, and ethical consistency hang out. If you’re not quite there now, it’s a very worthy aspiration.

In case no one told you today, you ARE amazing!

Ray

Ray
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Co-Exist – The Affirmation Spot for Thursday July 2, 2009

Ray’s Daily Affirmation:

“Right this moment, I am choosing an open heart over a narrow mind.”
(Download this mp3 affirmation or 100s of others at The Affirmation Spot)




Our world CAN live in unity. We have it within our power to live in peace with each other on this planet. And yet, too often, we choose conflict, anger, and violence. Humanity’s destiny is not written in stone or in a book somewhere. It is written in our hearts, our words, and our choices every day.

It is written in the way we think about each other, talk (or don’t talk) to each other, and act towards each other. Fearful perceptions are reinforced or loving awareness replaces the fear. The world remains stuck where it is or progresses towards a place we all aspire to.

One of the biggest stressers in human relations is our differing ways of worship. For millenia we have fought and killed in the name of God. This was never a particularly wise or productive use of our human, intellectual, spiritual, and material treasure.

Today more than ever we face an increasingly clear choice to learn to get along and share this planet or to destroy ourselves. It really is that simple. One simple mantra serves us well here….”Live and let live.” Is our need to be right so powerful and so insistent that we risk destroying ourselves over it?

Or, can we reach a higher place where I live fully and freely according to my beliefs and allow you to do the same?

Today’s video shows the commonality of our spiritual aspirations. If only we could practice the love, compassion, and empathy that all of our spiritual traditions teach; how much better off we’d be.

Stay inspired!

Ray

2009 Affirmation

“This year I am absolutely committed to being the person I came here to be!”

Affirmational Prayer for A Better World – The Affirmation Spot for Thursday January 22, 2009

Today’s Affirmation:

“Right this moment, I am choosing an open heart over a narrow mind.”
(Click the affirmation to hear the mp3 version)

meditation_prayer_rsI ask this day that I might be an instrument of peace in the world. May I take care to think only thoughts that lead to a positive world for myself and others. Help me to bear in mind the effect my thoughts have on the world I come to experience.

May I join with other compassionate beings to lend my thoughts and efforts to creating a better tomorrow for us all. I am taking action to make the world a better place in every way I affect it today. May I find peace and healing for myself as I work to be part of the solution in the world.

Grant me the strength within to love all living things and to make a positive impact on all I encounter today. May I attract positive people and circumstances to me that I may be more effective in my undertakings. May no one be too important nor too unimportant to greet with a kind word.

I seek the strength to live completely in love, as I release all my fears. I grant forgiveness for all I hold against myself and for all I hold against another. May I be a tool for healing in the world. I ask for the fortitude to be the embodiment of selfless harmony to the extent I am able today.

I will generous with my time, my resources, and myself to the best of my ability without resentment or reluctance. For I know that what I give others I give to myself as well.

I seek happiness, peace, and freedom from suffering today. As such I wish it for all other beings as well. I am thankful for all that I have been given. I am especially grateful for the beauty and harmony that exists all around me, if only I am willing to see it.

Finally, I see a patient acceptance as events unfold in my life. Help me to see the big picture and not get bogged down by unimportant details. I understand that all my experiences are chosen by me at some level for my benefit. Thus, I seek to understand, to learn, and to open myself to every wonderful possibility.

Amen

Ray Davis  (written circa 1993)

2009 Affirmation
This year I am absolutely committed to being the person I came here to be.”

Message from the Desk of God

Today’s Thought:

If your God tells you to harm others for your cause, you need a new God.

Child watching the fireAs I surf the web most days, it’s nearly impossible to avoid stories of angry human beings doing hateful and harmful things to their neighbors. Conflicts that are ethnic or religious in nature seem to be seeded with particular venom and a complete loss of wisdom and common sense.

Generation after generation of “us” kills generation after generation of “them” and vice versa. Anyone in either group daring to stop and ask why or show a shred of humanity to the other side is labeled a traitor.

Of course, the Middle East represents the longest lasting and perhaps the sorriest example of this behavior. However, it is endemic to many places in the world.

I got to thinking what would God say to these people, many of whom are convinced they are doing God’s will. No, I don’t have a God complex, but I thought it might be interesting to speak directly to these angry, hurting, misguided people who refuse to put down the rock or the gun.

To all people everywhere!


loving_godDo you think Me so small that I cannot handle being called different names by different people? Do you believe Me so arrogant that I cannot handle prayers in different forms and different languages? So selfish that I would choose the friendship of one of you over another? Whatever you call Me, I shall answer.

Your anger only eats you up and wastes your life. And when it boils over, it sends you out to kill, sometimes with weapons and sometimes with words. You rally around those who speak of violence and “solving our problems by eradicating ‘them’.”

You swirl around such words like sharks in a feeding frenzy and then you run off and do things in My name that I have explicitly asked you not to do. You commit suicide to kill others and think it brings you closer to me. Ridiculous! You dress in uniforms like it is a game and use machines – created with the very genius I granted you – to kill innocent people and call it righteous and justified. Outrageous!

When you kill and hate in My name you had better find the person – religious leader, politician, whoever taught you this – and tell them this IS NOT My teaching or My will. They have taken their hatred and prejudice and projected it off as God’s will. This is utter nonsense!

My children, you are never far from Me. Your “enemy” is never far from Me. I allow you all to rest your weary heads on My cloak. As you sleep, I see your dreams. THEY ARE THE SAME DREAMS! I weep because I know when you awake you will try again to steal the dream from each other. The dream is big enough for everyone. The world is big enough for everyone.

These are YOUR thoughts again. You are not closer to Me here than you are there. I AM THAT I AM and I AM EVERYWHERE.

Everywhere and every time I have ever communicated with humanity (in your scriptures, through another person, in your own heart and mind) I have taught you to love each other, to share with each other, to live in peace with each other. If that is not the message you received, you are NOT following a true teacher.

I have sent my teachers in whom I am well-pleased to teach you how to live together and you have twisted their words and used them as a means to tear yourselves apart.

You think you must send others to hell so you can go to heaven. Where do you get this stuff? Certainly, not from Me!

STOP IT!

You are all brothers and sisters, sharing a planet, sharing a common life experience. Your commonalities are vastly greater and more important than your differences. Yet, you seek out the differences and despise each other for them.

I see, now, that I made your desire to be right too strong. You would rather be right and think all others wrong than simply accept MY teaching to “Love thy neighbor as thyself”.

Your true potential will be forever hidden as long as you find only reason to hate. Follow your dreams rather than your hatred. Live together as brothers and sisters and give up all claims to the only truth, to your self-righteousness, and to Me.

I am big enough to accept all of you. You created the walls where none existed, now you must tear them down and live as ONE!


This is my word. Amen.

God

cc: all departments
cc: all human beings where ever they may be

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_colorRay’s 2015 speculative fiction novel, Anunnaki Awakening: Revelation, is turning heads. Where did humanity really come from and where is it going? This is Book 1 of a trilogy. The Awakening has begun!

Learn more about the trilogy and order your signed copy today at AATrilogy.com.

10 Steps to World Peace

Peace ZeichenWorld peace. It’s such a big topic that most people chastise its conceivability. “How,” they ask, “can I possibly contribute to it and how can we possibly achieve it?”

There is an anonymous story of a man who came upon a meditating sage. The sage looked so peaceful and serene that the man had to know his secret. After a brief conversation, the man said to the sage, “I wish I had your faith so that I could live as you do.”

The old sage smiled and said, “Ah, if you lived as I live, you would have my faith.”

We’re all imperfect. We have good days and bad, but these 10 steps are guaranteed to lead to a more peaceful and just world. Here are ten very simple things you can do to contribute to world peace. The great thing is they are totally scaleable. They work in your individual life and, working together, they can change our world.

Ten Steps to World Peace

  1. Live and let live.
  2. Transform religion from a force for division to a force for personal growth and development.
  3. Find a viable replacement for the global war economy.
  4. Respect the rights of every individual.
  5. Respect the needs of the group.
  6. Develop you instead of worrying about everyone else’s flaws.
  7. Find peace within, it will shine without.
  8. Love your neighbor as you love yourself.
  9. Recognize we are really one tiny planet -we’re all in this together.
  10. Demand that leaders and would-be leaders talk beyond labels. Most arguments for war and hate fall apart without the labels.

Ray

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Peace and the Global War Cult – The Affirmation Spot for Tuesday March 25, 2008

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




ray_launchpad.jpgDownload 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.

Today’s featured affirmation is:

“My thoughts, my words, my actions really do create my world. That is why I think great thoughts, I say great words, and I take great actions.” (repeats 4 times)
“Your thoughts, your words, and your actions really do create your world. That is you think great thoughts, you say great words, and you take great actions.” (repeats four times)

Hear an audio mp3 version of this affirmation right now.


Edwin Starr asked the question in his famous song. “War! Good God y’all, what is it good for?” Well, the answer is clear and has been for millenia. War is very good for board rooms and bottom lines. It is very good for politicians and self-proclaimed religious leaders wanting to make names for themselves. Afterall, who remembers the peace makers in history? It is conquerers and barbarians who go down as the great figures.

War is very good for uniting populaces and disconnecting their critical thinking skills. It is wonderful for obscuring agendas and pursuing policies a sober, empowered, and knowledgeable citizenry would never allow.

Viewed from the perspective of the global war cult, war is a very good thing and the only solution to problems in the world.

And so, war is presented to ordinary people on this planet wrapped only in the finest patriotic, religious, and safety-conscious garb as the only alternative to destruction of “our way of life”. You might call this the universal mantra of the war cult. “We must kill them before they kill us.” Like a bad joke we don’t get over and over and over again, we fall for its self-serving rhetoric time and again.

All the while, there is an alternative solution to the world’s problems. One that does not rain death and destruction on unsuspecting innocents. One that does not need to be wrapped in patriotism or religiosity like to make it pallatable.

That alernative is peace. Peace needs no emotional wrappings because it possesses its own instrinsic value. It is a virtue unto itself. Peace is the overlooked, underprivileged solution to the world’s problems.

Not surprisingly, the global war cult that benefits from killing people, breaking things, and stealing resources from others (as well as their millions of adherents who derive some sense of pride and self-esteem from being part of it) roundly mocks peace as unrealistic. They deride those who advocate peace as traitors and call their ideas sophistry.

The global war cult – whether it be powerful governments with massive military machines like China or the U.S. or ad-hoc wannabes like Osama bin Laden – have one very key characteristic in common. They have no capacity for “live and let live”. It’s not OK for those people over there to believe something different from them. It’s not OK for those people to have a resource they want and have the power to take from them. It’s not Ok for people to rule themselves in a land they greedily claimed by an agressor government or entity.

“Live and let live? Never,” says the war cult. “I will kill, I will take, and all the while claim God and justice are on my side. I will deny that peace is ever possible with ‘those people’. Afterall, ‘you can’t reason with them'”.

War and its mindset are a disease. The disease afflicts two-bit dictators and democratically elected leaders in $500 suits. It appeals to the masses when they are expertly convinced that “those people” are to blame for some ill in the world.

Peace is far less glamorous, far less profitable, far less interesting to cover on the nightly news. Yet the principles it embodies – live and let live, love thy neigbor as thyself, do unto others as you would have them do unto you – are the true measures spiritual development. They are the true test of enlightened leadership. They are the true hope for a humanity burdened and battered by the death and destruction wrought by the global war cult.

The time for peace is now. The global war cult has had 7,000 years of recorded human history to demonstrate the efficacy of its solution and it has utterly failed. The peaceful majority needs to stop being silent. It needs to stop revering these people as religious leaders and electing them to high office. We need to reach a point where the global war cult are the crazy men roaming the streets calling for death and destruction and NO ONE LISTENS.

That world is right there for us. We simply need to put our brains in gear and our fears in idle long enough to remove the spell cast upon humanity by the global war cult.

Be peaceful Be positive Be prosperous!

Ray

Dictionary of Human Behavior – The Affirmation Spot for Thursday March 13, 2008

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




ray_launchpad.jpgDownload 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.

Today’s featured affirmation is:

“My world is what I make of it and I choose to make it a peaceful place to be.”
Download an audio mp3 version of this affirmation right now.


I hesitated greatly before deciding to post today’s article. The dictionary is a bit – but only a bit – tongue-in-cheek. My analysis is dire, but hopeful. I try to keep this blog positive. I want people to find in it place they can come every day to be inspired, englightened, or reminded how special they are.

Sometimes, however, light comes along with heat. Satire is a tool for awakening. And so, I present a dictionary of words that might differ slightly from the definitions you’ll find in Webster’s or at Dictionary.com. Unfortunately, these definitions are,  all too often, closer to the truth.

You may find yourself chuckling because it describes someone you know or even you at times. Actually, it describes all of us sometimes.

What I’d ask you, make that implore you, to think about as you read these is whether a world in our current situation can long survive while so many still embody these definitions? The weapons of mass destruction genie is out of the bottle. The choices we continue to make in our own self-interests on this planet are very soon to have consequences, if we do not mend our ways and our fences.Omar Bradley

General Omar Bradley
once said,

“Ours is a world of nuclear giants and ethical infants. We know more about war than we know about peace, more about killing that we know about living.”

We need to be quickly about the business of reversing that trend. So, read, laugh, enjoy, and think today.









Dictionary of Human Behavior

  • Evidence – a set of facts neatly arranged and carefully worded to support your  point of view.
  • Proof – “independent” verification of  your evidence by those who share your point of view.
  • Truth – the set of evidence and proof you are not willing to part with no matter how much evidence and proof others presents to counter it.
  • Lies – the label given to any evidence or proof contradicts or disagrees with your point of view.
  • Traitor – the label given to others who present legitimate reasons why your point of view may not be valid. The label is a last resort to silence them.
  • Peace – a beautiful, but ultimately, impossible dream shared by children and the naive.
  • Naive – people who just can’t understand why we must kill all of them because they are a threat to the world. 
  • Hypocrisy – a word used to describe how they don’t live up to their principles without requiring a careful evaluation of how closely you live up to yours.
  • Sinner – the practicioners of any system (political, religious, or otherwise) that does not precisely conform to your point of view.
  • Evil – a label used to describe the practicioners of other systems used to rally support among us for attacking them.
  • Nuclear war – 1) a war making use of highly destructive devices designed with the extinction of your opponent in mind. 2) The unthinking person’s answer to every world problem as in, “We should just nuke’em.” 
  • Enemy – see Them.
  • Me – the center of the universe where all truth resides. An individual ego structure that gives  you the unalienable right to believe that your nation, religion, political system, culture, family, needs, wants, or dreams are of more value than those of others on the planet simply because they are yours.
  • Us – we (as opposed to them) those who look, think, believe, and were, by fate, born in the same place as you. A group ego structure confident of its complete and eternal superiority to them. A group thus blessed because of its good fortune to have had you born in it or join it.
  • Them – see Enemy. Those who look, think, believe, and were, by fate, born some place different than you. They are lesser than us and should conform to our world view of the world or face the destruction they deserve.
  • Religion – an institution invoking God as the final arbiter to prove the superiority of everything about you and us over the inferiority of everything about them.
  • Politics – an instrument used for implementing your point of view as the official policy of a political entity up to and including the entire world.
  • Justice – the justified act of exacting revenge upon them by us as redress for a real or perceived wrong.
  • Murder – the unjustified act of exacting revenge upon us by them as redress for a real or perceived wrong.

Now, I can already sense fingers starting to rise and point at the opposition and the words, “BUT, THEY…” forming on your lips. Fine. That is working well for us. Let’s keep it up. In another generation or two (maybe sooner), that should have us and them nose to nose ready to unleash nuclear, biological, or chemical war on each other.

General Bradley has another famous quote that is applicable here, “We have grasped the mystery of the atom and rejected the sermon on the mount.” Was he right or was he wrong?

There are four camps that allow this situation to persist and put all of us in peril. Keep in mind that both them and us have all of these factions.

  1. Profiteers – those who profit from the global war economy and see profit as superior to an end to human suffering.
  2. Partisans – those who really, honestly believe that our problems will be solved by killing all of them.
  3. Moral High Grounders – by far the largest group, these are the enablers of the first two groups. It usually derives some benefit from the status quo (economic, political, or spiritual).  This group recognizes the problem I’m describing but sees no options. This group doesn’t really think peace is possible. It has really bought into the idea that they get up in the morning with nothing more on their minds than to hurt us. We have no option but defend ourselves. However, this group sticks to the moral high ground that, “We will put our weapons down and stop killing them right after they put their weapons down and stop killing us.”
  4. Activists this is the small group of people in every society who recognize the precipice we dance upon.  This group speaks and acts to wake the other three groups. This group goes by names like reformer, protestor, social commentator, poet, prophet, sage, writer, radical. Generally, they are people ridiculed by the status quo for daring to challenge it. Others are discouraged from joining or thinking such blaphemous thoughts about the established order.

Albert EinsteinAlbert Einstein said, “The significant problems we face today cannot be solved by the level of thinking that created them.”

The U.S., China, or Russia cannot solve these problems by adding another $100 billion to their “defense” budgets and engage in a “surge” to solve these problems. This problem is not just caused by “Muslim extremists”, “American imperialism”, or “UN inaction”.

It is a crisis, as it has been from the beginning, of the human heart. It is a crisis created because our fears are bigger than our dreams. It is a crisis driven by the belief that killing each other is simpler than co-existing and respecting. It is a crisis that will only be solved by thinking at a level beyond the thinking that created it.

The stakes for the planet and for our species are huge! We are facing change or extinction – plain and simple. The problems are large, but the promise that lies within each human heart dwarfs them. The cumulitive promise of 6 billion human hearts is incalculable.

I know only this, in closing, if 6 billion people decided today that we wanted a different world. We would have it in an instant. Why shouldn’t we?

Be peaceful Be positive Be prosperous!

Ray

The Affirmation Spot.com

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