Calm Down…We (Still) Feel Fine

A human outpost that constantly inspires:

“Since August 2005, We Feel Fine has been harvesting human feelings from a large number of weblogs. Every few minutes, the system searches the world’s newly posted blog entries for occurrences of the phrases “I feel” and “I am feeling”. When it finds such a phrase, it records the full sentence, up to the period, and identifies the “feeling” expressed in that sentence (e.g. sad, happy, depressed, etc.). Because blogs are structured in largely standard ways, the age, gender, and geographical location of the author can often be extracted and saved along with the sentence, as can the local weather conditions at the time the sentence was written. All of this information is saved.”

http://www.wefeelfine.org/

A Doctor’s Take On Stress

Stress

A definition, friends, of stress:
Your own reaction to a mess
Stresses may be large or small
Sometimes they’re not perceived at all
Examples: Say a lack of cash;
A just-avoided freeway crash;
An allergen that’s in the air;
The barber says you’re losing hair;
Fifty on a spavined horse;
Attorney’s letter re divorce;
Wetness, dryness, heat or cold;
Callow youth or getting old
Stress from pains to pleasures range
The common element is change
Adapt or die, and that’s a fact
And so our bodies must react:
The heart speeds up, the gut slows down
Facial muscles snarl or frown
Bronchial tubes expand and then
The blood absorbs more oxygen
Widened pupils search the void
Adrenal glands secrete steroid
Serum glucose starts to climb
More insulin works overtime
Stressed physically or mentally
Muscles tense to fight or flee
The midbrain boils with rage and fear
While cortex plans to save your rear
The point is, stress is not unique
It doesn’t mean you’re dumb or weak
A part of mankind’s constitution
Bequeathed to us by evolution
Common both to man and beast
It proves you’re still alive, at least.

By William Goldsmith, MD

Ten Old Ideas And A New Prayer for 2009


As we start of the tenth year of the new millennium, consider ten old ideas and a new prayer, offered as a small thanks:
1. More than ever, we’re in it together.


“The new electronic interdependence recreates the world in the image of a global village”
Marshall McLuhan, from Understanding Media The Extensions of Man
(He wrote that about 30 years before the internet)

2. Compassion sets us free.

“A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.” Albert Einstein

3. Seek strength to forgive.


“Am I not destroying my enemies when I make friends of them?”
Abraham Lincoln

4. Get less things.

“You can never get enough of what you don’t need to make you happy.”

Eric Hoffer

5. Dream ideas that are unstoppable.

“An invasion of armies can be resisted, but not an idea whose time has come.”
Victor Hugo

An example of an unstoppable idea is electronic freedom. As John Perry Barlow said, “The Internet treats censorship as a malfunction and routes around it.”

6. Change the world.


“Never doubt that a small, group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has.”
Margaret Mead

7. Take the right path, not the easy road.

“You gain strength, courage, and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You must do the thing which you think you cannot do.”
Eleanor Roosevelt

8. Try something new.


“Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”
Mark Twain

9. Pick the right fight.


“Pick battles big enough to matter, small enough to win.”
Johnathan Kozol, On Being a Teacher

image from betterworld.net

10. Inspire the planet!

A new prayer, that after a difficult year, may 2009 bring you:

Community that connects
Compassion that lifts spirits
Strength that forgives grudges
Priorities that prize people
Faith in big dreams,
Courage to changes the world
Inspiration to take more chances
Focus to give direction
Wisdom that chart a sound course
Character to do what’s difficult and right
Love that light your world and mine

The Roots of Violence

Wealth without work,
Pleasure without conscience,
Knowledge without character,
Commerce without morality,
Science without humanity,
Worship without sacrifice,
Politics without principles.

Mohandas K. Ghandi

Reinhold Niebuhr

Nothing worth doing is completed in our lifetime,
Therefore, we are saved by hope.
Nothing true or beautiful or good makes complete sense in any immediate context of history;
Therefore, we are saved by faith.
Nothing we do, however virtuous, can be accomplished alone.
Therefore, we are saved by love.
No virtuous act is quite as virtuous from the standpoint of our friend or foe as from our own;
Therefore, we are saved by the final form of love which is forgiveness.

Calm is all Nature as a Resting Wheel.

Calm is all nature as a resting wheel.
The kine are couched upon the dewy grass;
The horse alone, seen dimly as I pass,
Is cropping audibly his later meal:
Dark is the ground; a slumber seems to steal
O’er vale, and mountain, and the starless sky.
Now, in this blank of things, a harmony,
Home-felt, and home-created, comes to heal
That grief for which the senses still supply
Fresh food; for only then, when memory
Is hushed, am I at rest. My Friends! restrain
Those busy cares that would allay my pain;
Oh! leave me to myself, nor let me feel
The officious touch that makes me droop again.

William Wordsworth

Calm Down!

Calm down,its just words.
People say them i know it hurts.
They just tell you them to bring you down.
Give them a smile in stead of a frown.
Calm down and let it pass by,
Don’t listen to them there all lies.
Calm down and don’t speak, roll you
eyes and turn your cheek.
Calm down see its over, now if
it happens again read this over…

Miriah M Hayes

Walt Whitman

Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to everyone that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown, or to any man or number of men [sic] — go freely with powerful uneducated persons, and with the young, and with the mothers or families — re-examine all you have been told in school or church or in any book, and dismiss whatever insults your own soul; and your very flesh shall be a great poem, and have the richest fluency, not only in its words, but in the silent lines of its lips and face, and between the lashes of your eyes, and in every motion and joint of your body.

from the 1855 Preface to Leaves of Grass

Riprap

Lay down these words
Before your mind like rocks.
placed solid, by hands
In choice of place, set
Before the body of the mind
in space and time:
Solidity of bark, leaf, or wall
riprap of things:
Cobble of milky way,
straying planets,
These poems, people,
lost ponies with
Dragging saddles–
and rocky sure-foot trails.
The worlds like an endless
four-dimensional
Game of Go.
ants and pebbles
In the thin loam, each rock a word
a creek-washed stone
Granite: ingrained
with torment of fire and weight
Crystal and sediment linked hot
all change, in thoughts,
As well as things.

Gary Snyder

Pine Forrest

Let us go now into the forest.
Trees will pass by your face,
and I will stop and offer you to them,
but they cannot bend down.
The night watches over its creatures,
except for the pine trees that never change:
the old wounded springs that spring
blessed gum, eternal afternoons.
If they could, the trees would lift you
and carry you from valley to valley,
and you would pass from arm to arm,
a child running
from father to father.

Gabriela Mistral