Hawaii Part II: Your Personal Road to Hana – The Affirmation Spot for Tuesday May 6, 2008

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Today’s featured affirmation is:

“I am a visionary. I see and respond to trends well ahead of the pack.” (repeats 3 times)

“You are a visionary. You see and respond to trends well ahead of the pack.” (repeats 3 times)

Hear an audio mp3 version of this affirmation right now.


Good morning! My apologies for the sporadic posts of late. We returned from Hawaii to a lot of work and then I got blasted with some bronchitus. I’m human like everyone else.

Today is part two of our Hawaii trip and, of course, it would not be The Affirmation Spot if I failed to tie it to something in our lives.

We left our intrepid voyagers sailing from Hilo to Maui on Day 3 of their trip. We awoke to see the beautiful Western Maui mountains from our balcony as we cruised into Kahului, Maui.

The harbor in Kahului is a working harbor. Normally, you find ships and barges being unloaded by giant cranes and lines of trucks ready to supply island’s ever-growing need for supplies.

It’s also not unusual, morning or night, to see some of the local canoe racing clubs practicing on the course laid out in harbor.

Our Day 1 Maui excursion was the Road to Hana. Hana is a small, remote town on Maui’s southeast coast. The area was one of the last on the island to be modernized. There was no paved road to the area until 1926. The town is situated between a giant rainforest and the coast. It is also the heart of Maui’s cattle industry and you can see the odd sight of cattle grazing right next to white sandy beaches.

For those of you who have never been, “The Road to Hana” spans 52 miles from the port and features, 617 curves, 56 one-lane bridges, many more two-lane hairpin turns around jagged rock, and sheer drops that reveal some of the most unspoiled coastline in the islands.

There are places along the Hana Road that are just too beautiful not to stop. April snapped these photos during our stop at Honomanu Bay.

   

There was lush rainforest foliage and majestic jungle waterfalls. The African Tulip Trees were in full bloom.

   

 What begins as a 52-mile drive turns into quite a journey and experience. Because of the mountain roads, it takes about 3 hours to get to Hana (and that was on a nice day). The road, the awesome beauty, the changes from jungle, to jagged coastline, to farmland remind me of our lives.

We start with the best of intentions on a straight line towards our goals in life. Along the way, life has its twists and turns like The Road to Hana. We have to adjust and deal with the curves and not let them distract or deter us from our goals.


 As we gain wisdom, we come to understand that the unexpected detours are often what adds the value and the meaning to our experience of life. Without them, our lives would be mundane and boring even if they might be easier.

In the end, if we ride the curves and stand by our dreams we are rewarded for the effort. On the Road to Hana that reward comes at the magnificent Halekala National Park. The O’heo (Seven Sacred) pools and an awe-inspiring view of the untamed Pacific are the reward on this journey.

   

 Here nature fills your senses demanding that you take stock and reflect on your journey. The sound of the wild Pacific pounding against the Maui coast drowns confusion and doubt. It washes away care and concern and leaves you feeling at one with all you see. This is definitely worth the journey!

This is the feeling we experience when we achieve our goals and dreams too. All the hardship we experienced along the road is graciously welcomed as experience. All the naysayers and negatives vanish like the ghosts they always were. We are left in awe that we could be so blessed.

Maybe today you are only on curve 201 of 614 on the way to your dream. That’s Ok. Maybe one of the beautiful sights along the way has momentarily distracted you. Don’t sweat it. If your dreams have meaning, you will continue on the road. You will get back on track and you will finish your personal Road to Hana.

I know you can do it! Those who turn back never see the dreams. Those who continue the journey one day at a time will find their reward.

Stay inspired!

Ray

 

 

 

 

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Thinking Inside the Box


Today’s Affirmation:
Million dollar ideas are as common as grass. My million dollar idea is coming to me today.


How inventive are you? Do you see a roadblock or an opportunity when you encounter a challenge? When your million dollar idea comes along will you recognize it or dismiss it as crazy?

Innovation is not always miraculous. Sometimes it’s simplicity. It’s born of necessity and an otherwise ordinary idea meeting in the right time and place.

We’re all constantly told to “think outside the box” when we need to be creative. Sometimes, though, innovation requires us to think inside the box.

My friend Gerry passed along an e-mail she received about a recent Japanese innovation – square watermelons!

Japanese grocers had a problem. Their stores are much smaller than American stores and so space is limited. Watermelons take up a lot of room and they don’t stack neatly in a tight space.

A natural response would be to say that watermelons are round and that’s just the way it is. However, Japanese farmers decided that if the grocers needed square watermelons they would come up with a way to do it. As it turns out, watermelons will grow in the shape of a square when they are planted in a square box.

Japanese consumers, who also have smaller refrigerators, loved the new watermelons. Farmers were able to sell the melons at premium prices. Everyone won.

At the bottom of the e-mail, its originator offered some outstanding analysis that benefits all of us when confronting a challenging issue.

  • Don’t Assume: The major problem was that most people had always seen round watermelons so they automatically assumed that square watermelons were impossible before even thinking about the question. Things that you have been doing a certain way your entire life have taken on the aura of the round watermelon and you likely don’t even take the time to consider if there is another way to do it. Breaking yourself from assuming this way can greatly improve your overall life as you are constantly looking for new and better ways to do things. This was one of the most difficult things for me to do because most of the assumptions I make, I don’t even realize that I’m making them. They seem perfectly logical on the surface, so I have to constantly make an effort to question them.
  • Question habits: The best way to tackle these assumptions is to question your habits. If you can make an effort to question the way you do things on a consistent basis, you will find that you can continually improve the way that you live your life. Forming habits when they have been well thought out is usually a positive thing, but most of us have adopted our habits from various people and places without even thinking about them. I have changed a large number of habits that I have had after taking the time to question them and continue to do so. Some of them I have know idea where they came from while others I can trace to certain people or instances in my life. It’s a never ending process, but by doing this, you can consistently strive toward making all aspects of your life more enjoyable instead of defaulting to what you have now.
  • Be creative: When faced with a problem, be creative in looking for a solution. This often requires thinking outside the box. Most people who viewed this question likely thought they were being asked how they could genetically alter water melons to grow square which would be a much more difficult process to accomplish. By looking at the question from an alternative perspective, however, the solution was quite simple. Being creative and looking at things in different ways in all portions of your life will help you find solutions to many problems where others can’t see them. I am not a creative person, but I’ve found that the more that you look at things from different perspectives, the more creative I have become. It’s a learned art and builds upon itself.
  • Look for a better way: The square watermelon question was simply seeking a better and more convenient way to do something. The stores had flagged a problem they were having and asked if a solution was possible. It’s impossible to find a better way if you are never asking the question in the first place. I try to ask if there is a better way of doing the things that I do and I constantly write down the things I wish I could do (but currently can’t) since these are usually hints about steps I need to change. Get into the habit of asking yourself, “Is there a better way I could be doing this?” and you will find there often is.
  • Impossibilities often aren’t: If you begin with the notion that something is impossible, then it obviously will be for you. If, on the other hand, you decide to see if something is possible or not, you will find out through trial and error.   Take away the lessons from the square watermelons and apply them to all areas in your life (work, finances, relationships, etc) and you will find that by consistently applying them, you will constantly be improving all aspects of your life.

The famed starfleet captain Jean-Luc Picard once said, “Something is only impossible until it’s not.” Square watermelons are not impossible and neither, more than likely, is your challenge. You just need to look with a fresh pair of eyes. And whether in or out of the box, let your spirit of invention lead you to success.

Be peaceful Be positive Be prosperous!

Ray

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

He is the author of the Anunnaki Awakening series (2015). Book 1 – Revelation – is now available in paperback and on Kindle. This trilogy takes Ancient Aliens out of the past and into the present. An interstellar, interdimensional journey ensues with humanity’s future hanging in the balance.

A Challenge to Change – The Affirmation Spot for Wednesday March 5, 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.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 began Monday March 3. The program begin each Monday evening at 9:00 eastern, 8:00 central time in the U.S. They recommend reading the book before the class. You can register for free at Oprah.com



Big March MP3 Affirmation Sale!

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! 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! Click here to view, hear excerpts, or download affirmations.Today’s featured affirmation is:

“A new sense of purpose is totally permeating my being. I am upbeat and moving toward my goals.”
Download an audio mp3 version of this affirmation right now.



I hope everyone is enjoying the last gasps of winter. Now the time has come to begin moving into a Spring mentality.

Seasonal changes are gentle reminders that change is an inevitability in our lives.  The question for us to answer is whether we will be the authors of the change or its victims? Change is a hot commodity right now. The presidential candidacy of Barack Obama has focused on change as a theme.We seem to want change, but we must embody any change we hope to see in ourselves or in the world.

Mahatma Gandhi said, “We must be the change we want to see in the world.”

Here is a question for you.

Are you where you want to be in your life? Personally, spiritually, financially? Are you ready to be the change you want to see in your life?

You know the changes you want to make. Somewhere you probably have a list of changes you want to make. They’re probably left over from some New Year’s resolutions or the plan you started planning a new life strategy last summer. Human nature, though, is to put them off. We convince ourselves to wait for a better time.

Mark Twain once said, “I fully support progress. It’s change that I object to.”

As ever Twain was speaking tongue-in-cheek, but his statement is true of many of us much of the time. We want t to improve our circumstances. We are simply unwilling to make the changes necessary to bring the improvements about. And so, we miss out on tremendous benefits that we might have enjoyed.

Change is a difficult because we find, upon reflection, that we operate a large portion of our lives on auto-pilot. Our modern society often has us so stretched by external concerns that addressing our interior life takes a back seat. We find ourselves lacking the energy and the insight to shift our perspectives in ways leading to the kind of personal growth we want to achieve.

Is that how you really want to go through life?

So, challenge yourself this week to take the time for some self-reflection.  Focus on the changes you would really like to see in your life.  Develop the insight necessary to make them happen. If you start now, by the time the grass starts to green and the temperatures start to change for the warmer, you will be well on your way to changing too. 

Be peaceful Be positive Be prosperous!

Ray

The Affirmation Spot.com

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If We Want Change, We Must First Question – The Affirmation Spot for Tuesday January 15, 2008



Today’s affirmation is:

“I question assumptions and long-held beliefs to discover new and beneficial ways to live.”
 

If we are to have change in the world or in our lives, we must learn to question. Questioning is difficult. The group does not like to be questioned. So much so, that in many instances the questioner is ostracized or even put to death. Jesus, Martin Luther King,  and Gandhi are all examples of those who challenged the status quo and felt its wrath.

The ego is not much more forgiving. When we challenge its dominance the ego can be nearly as viscious as the group. Stress, depression, and self-destructive behavior are defense mechanisms used by the ego to maintain its control.So, questioning is scary. Nonetheless, a failure to question is an invitation to slavery, tyranny, and unhappiness. We must question so that fresh ideas can be aired and new possibilities created.

Questioning is not the same as not believing. In fact, questioning is really an empowered type of believing that takes belief to a whole new level by verifying it and testing it against reality.Today we have three very short stories. The first two illustrate the trap of failing to question. The final story offers one way to test the validity of our beliefs and assumptions and come out stronger because of it.

The Ham  ham.jpgThere is a story of a woman who was preparing a ham to be baked. Before placing it in the oven, she sliced an inch off the end of the ham.

Her daughter was watching her bake a ham for the first time. She asked, “mom, why did you cut an inch off the end of the ham before you placed it in the oven?”

“I don’t know,” replied the mother, “my mother always cut an inch off a ham before she put it in the oven.”

Curious, the mother picked up the phone and called the grandmother to ask why she cut the end off a ham before baking it.

The grandmother answered that she had no idea why she cut the end off hams before baking them. “My mother always did it,” she said.

Finally, the mother and the grandmother got the great-grandmother on the phone. The grandmother asked, “Mom, why did you cut an inch off the end of the ham before placing it in the oven?”

The great-grandmother replied, “I cut the end off the ham because my oven was too small to fit a full ham.”

We learn by watching and absorbing the thoughts, actions, and beliefs of those around us. Often we don’t even stop to question them. Two generations of this family always cut off the end of the ham. They never quetioned it. They did it because they had seen their mothers do it.

Nothing changed until the great-grandaughter finally asked, “Why?”

Blind Leading the Blind 

buddha_teaching2.jpgWe have generational blindness leaning on generational blindness.

The Buddha once spoke to a group of young Brahmins (priests) about their “belief” in Brahma (God). “Who among you has personally seen or spoke to Brahma,” asked The Buddha?

The Brahmins answered, “None of us has seen or spoken to Brahma.”

Buddha continued, “Well then, which of your teachers has seen or spoken to Brahma?” Again, the youths answered that none of their teachers had actually seen or spoken to Brahma.

Finally, Buddha asked, “Who in your lineage going back seven generations has seen or spoken to Brahma?” The young Brahmins admitted that no one even going back seven generations had actually seen or spoken to Brahma.

“Then,” said Buddha, “If not you, nor your teachers, nor their teachers going back seven generations has seen or spoken to Brahma, you are but the blind leading the blind.

Buddha was not attacking their beliefs. He was trying to get them to examine their beliefs and ideas and to become a fully awake and responsible human beings. 

Challenge Beliefs and Put Them to the Test

buddha_teaching.jpgDuring a visit to the town of the Kalamas, the Buddha was asked a crucial question.

“Reverend Gautama, many teachers enter our midst teaching that their way and their way alone is the path to salvation. They extol the virtues of their own doctrines while tearing down the doctrines of other teachers. This creates doubt in our minds about all their teachings. For how are we to know which speaks the truth and which speaks falsehood?”

Buddha replied, “Kalamas, you have doubt in circumstances where doubt is understandable. Where doubt thrives uncertainty is born.” The Buddha proposed a test against which to measure any teaching including his own.

  • Do not believe something because it has been passed down and believed for many generations.
  • Do not believe something merely because it is a traditional practice.
  • Do not believe something because everyone believes it.
  • Do not believe something because it is written in a book and has been recited over and over.
  • Do not believe something solely on the grounds of logical reasoning.
  • Do not believe something because it fits your preconceived notions.
  • Do not believe something because you trust who is saying it.
  • Do not believe something only because your teacher says it is so.

“Kalamas, when you yourselves know directly something is unskillful, unwholesome, blameworthy, rejected by the wise, harmful to yourselves or others, leads to poverty or unhappiness, you should give it up.”

“One the other hand, Kalamas, when you know directly that something is skilled, wholesome, blameless, praised by the wise, and leads to well-being, prosperity, and happiness, you should accept it and practice it.”

We all need to examine the beliefs that are driving our actions in this world. When we look at the state of the world we must conclude that there is more each of us can do to make a difference. It all begins with questioning age-old beliefs. Even beliefs based in truth can become clouded by generations of unexamined hatreds, fears, and prejudices.

Every change, personal or global, begins with the courage to question.



 Be peaceful Be prosperous!


Ray

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Challenging Yourself to Be Great – The Affirmation Spot for Friday November 30, 2007

Welcome to The Affirmation Spot. If this is your first time to the site, be sure to click one of the subscription options (top left) to be notified each time the blog is updated.

Thank you for visiting. Tell your your positive-thinking, motivated friends and your not-so-motivated friends about the blog. There is something for everyone.

There are direct links to downloadable mp3 affirmations at The Affirmation Spot.com on the right menu. They are set to music and allow you take positive thoughts with you wherever you go all day. Enjoy today’s post.


green_leaves_sunlight.jpgToday’s affirmation is:

“Your life is coming together in a complete and perfect way. You are doing all that is necessary, accepting all that is necessary, and releasing all that is necessary for your life to come forth and blossom. Give yourself credit for your accomplishments; cut yourself some slack for your mistakes. Know that all leads to your growth and healing. Be happy an enjoy life!”

When you accept that your life is coming together just as it should, you are free to challenge yourself to stretch beyond your limits. 

On my journey this day, I follow in the footsteps of the immortals. The imprints they have left behind on the Earth are large and their strides are a stretch for me. Yet, if I dare not encounter them and measure myself by them, how shall I ever know the true immensity of my own being?

So, I step consciously into the light; walking the path they once walked. Leaving it, occasionally, and improvising. Adding to it qualities uniquely my own.

Breathing with the trees and conversing with the clouds, as once they did. Our collective wisdom grows until no distinction remains among the path, the immortals, and me.

 

“Whether you think you can or think you can’t, you’re right.” ~ Henry Ford

“There is no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather.” ~ John Ruskin

 

Right now is the time to open yourself to the possibility of ignoring limitations and going beyond self-imposed boundaries. For the fear and anxiety you experience are nothing but the shadow of unfulfilled promise.

arms_stretched.jpgThe world is full of opportunity and peril and a little of each in the other. It is ever forming and reforming; manifesting in precise accordance with our expectations. For your world lives in your mind long before it becomes visible; shaping itself to your perception of what is possible.

What is set in stone today is the dust in tomorrow’s breeze. Remember you are creating tomorrow’s results with every thought, word, and action today. Change is the catalyst for your betterment and your imagination its only limitation. Make the most of this blessing given you to personify the fruition of the promise that dwells within.

Each moment is a gift providing you with a fresh start on which to build a life filled with things more precious to you than your problems.

Peace…

Ray

The Affirmation Spot.com

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