For some reason, maybe triggered by the annuals passing across my desk for review this last month, I want to create a personal calendar. Not a wall calendar, but a daily one for reflection and meditation.

This is going to be several months in the making, and I’m not sure how I will share it with anyone… but I am excited at the possibilities.

Step 1: Find out which days are related to sacred to devoted to, what or who, and why.

Did you know that October 23rd is National Mole Day and that it has nothing to do with the animal? “Celebrated annually on October 23 from 6:02 a.m. to 6:02 p.m., Mole Day commemorates Avogadro’s Number (6.02 x 10^23), which is a basic measuring unit in chemistry. Mole Day was created as a way to foster interest in chemistry.”

Step 2: Create projects or projections celebrating an aspect of each day.

I’m at a loss for a meditation about science or molecules, at least at this moment. Maybe a future edit will occur.

(because its too embarrasing for words, otherwise.)

Seattle unveils slogan: ‘metronatural’ 

 

SEATTLE – When Washington state announced its new tourism slogan last spring, Pike Place Market vendor Kenny Telesco was willing to give it a chance. He practiced saying it with “jazz hands” and asked tourists to “SayWA” as they posed for photos. But he’s not sure he can stomach Seattle’s new tourism slogan, unveiled Friday in 18-foot-tall letters atop the Space Needle: “metronatural.” 

“How do you use that in a sentence?” Telesco asked. “‘Welcome to Metronatural.’ … It’s an airport where you can buy organic bananas.” 

Others suggested “metronatural” evoked an urban nudist camp and speculated about whether it would last longer than “SayWA,” which the state dropped recently because it failed to catch on. 

“Metronatural” is the result of a 16-month, $200,000 effort by Seattle’s Convention and Visitors Bureau. The bureau plans to spend $300,000 marketing the slogan, which will largely be targeted at generating business for the Washington Convention and Trade Center. 

The idea behind “metronatural” was to capture that “Seattle offers the best of both worlds,” visitors bureau president Don Welsh said in a statement. “We have a vibrant urban center surrounded by pristine wilderness and outdoor recreation.” 

A sampling of vendors and tourists at Pike Place Market, one of the city’s premier attractions, suggested that Seattle doesn’t need a slogan, let alone one that plays on that buzzword of yesteryear “metrosexual.” 

That’s the approach that Vancouver, British Columbia, took when it updated its tourism marketing. Instead of having a tag line, advertisements simply say “Tourism Vancouver,” with a large “V” styled to resemble an Olympic medal hanging from an athlete’s neck. 

It was Vancouver’s decision to update its slogan that prompted Seattle to follow suit. Seattle’s seldom-seen old slogan, developed in 1999, was a picture of an eye, an “at” symbol and the letter L: “See-At-L.” 

A look at the city’s tourism industry would seem to suggest it’s been doing fine without the new slogan. A record 9.1 million people visited Seattle last year, according to the visitors bureau. The cruise port is bustling, and the convention center drew nearly 400,000 people last year. 

“Metro” and “natural” are “not two words that impress me as words that are going to stick out in someone’s mind, like you want a slogan to stick out in someone’s mind,” said John Silas, a 30-year market veteran who makes and sells hardwood cribbage boards. “The idea feels sterile and commercial and it’s lacking the heart of Seattle.” 

Tour guide Dick Falkenberry said he had heard all about the new slogan. 

“It’s ‘SayWA.’ No, wait, it’s worse than ‘SayWA,'” he said. “It’s ‘urban-metro.'” 

Close enough. 

By GENE JOHNSON, Associated Press Writer 

On the Net: http://www.metronatural.com/

Kuan Yin (觀音; Pinyin: Guān YÄ«n) is the bodhisattva of compassion as venerated by East Asian Buddhists, usually as a female. She is also known as the Chinese Goddess of Compassion by many. Kuan Yin originated as the Sanskrit AvalokiteÅ›vara, which is her male form. Commonly known in the West as the Goddess of Mercy, Kuan Yin is also revered by Chinese Taoists as an Immortal. The name Kuan Yin is short for Kuan-shih Yin (Py.: Guānshì YÄ«n, 觀世音) which means “Observing the Sounds of the World”.
 In Japanese, Kuan Yin is pronounced Kannon (観音) or more formally Kanzeon (観世音); the spelling Kwannon, based on a pre-modern pronunciation, is sometimes seen. In Korean, this incarnation of Buddha is called Gwan-eum or Gwanse-eum, and in Vietnamese, the name is Quan Âm or Quan Thế Âm Bồ Tát.
Kuan Yin is the Chinese name for the Bodhisattva Avalokiteśvara. However, folk traditions in China and other East Asian countries have added many distinctive characteristics and legends. Avalokiteśvara was originally depicted as Buddha when he was still a prince, and therefore wears chest-revealing clothing and may even sport a moustache. However, in China, Kuan Yin is usually depicted as a woman.
 In China, Kuan Yin is usually shown in a white flowing robe, and usually wearing necklaces of Indian/Chinese royalty. In the right hand is a water jar containing pure water, and in the left, a willow branch. The crown usually depicts the image of Amitabha Buddha, Kuan Yin’s spiritual teacher before she became a Bodhisattva.
There are also regional variations of Kuan Yin depiction. One of these is that of Kuan Yin with fish. In this depiction Kuan Yin is depicted as a maiden dressed in Tang dynasty style clothing carrying a fish basket. This is popular in the Fukien region of China.
Along with Buddhism, Kuan Yin’s veneration was introduced into China as early as the 1st century CE, and reached Japan by way of Korea soon after Buddhism was first introduced into the country from the mid-7th century. (from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kuan_Yin)
From Goddesses and Heroines by Patricia Monaghan:

It was said that Kuan Yin was so concerned for humanity that, upon receiving enlightenment, she chose to retain human form rather than transcend it as pure energy. And so she would stay until every single living creature attained enlightenment. Her name translates “she who hears the weeping world”; Kuan Yin sat on her paradise island P’u T’o Shan answering every prayer addressed to her. The mere utterance of her name in prayer was said to assure salvation from physical and spiritual harm. Even better was the observance of Kuan Yin’s own testimony of peace and mercy; her most devout worshipers ate no flesh and lived entirely without doing violence to other beings.

Sometimes it was said that Kuan Yin originally lived on earth as Miao Shan, a young woman of unearthly virtue. Although her father wished her to marry, Miao Shan decided to visit a monastery, which, contrary to her expectations, was a hotbed of vice. Her father, hearing of her presence in the convent and suspecting the worst, burned it to the ground. A rainbow carried her to heaven, where her innocent death earned her transmutation into the divine world. (from http://www.hranajanto.com/goddessgallery/kuanyin.html)

Kuan Yin’s birthday is celebrated on the 19th day of the second, sixth and ninth lunar month. Bake a sweet cake and lay it before her, or pour a bowl of milk in her honor. Light a stick of incense – flower-scented or sandalwood are especially please.
Most importantly: contemplate compassion and its role within your life. Work with the heart chakra, to open and cleanse it completely, allowing you to give – and receive – compassion’s gift in your life.

(my thanks to Diane Saarien for sharing this — its too late now, but for next year…)

Love Your Body Day Celebrates Women’s Bodies, Takes On Advertisers

October 17, 2006

October 18, 2006, marks the National Organization for Women Foundation’s ninth annual Love Your Body Day.

In response to unhealthy and exploitive images of women in the media, NOW Foundation established the Love Your Body Campaign to promote positive, healthy images of women and girls, protest harmful and offensive advertisements, and raise awareness about women’s health issues.

“Love Your Body Day is a day of action designed to combat the impossible beauty standards promoted by airbrushed advertising, Hollywood and the fashion industry,” says NOW Foundation President Kim Gandy. “We encourage women and girls to celebrate themselves on Love Your Body Day and every day,” says Gandy.

The goal of the NOW Foundation Love Your Body campaign isn’t to sway women from purchasing and wearing cosmetics or trendsetting clothing. Rather, the campaign advocates for women to be informed consumers—defining clearly what makes them feel healthy and comfortable with their bodies, on their own terms.

According to the National Eating Disorders Association (NEDA) 80 percent of women express dissatisfaction with their appearance, and the Love Your Body campaign is taking steps to reverse the trend.

Women and girls across the nation will be leading a variety of actions this Wednesday, October 18. Some groups are throwing parties to design posters to use for rallies. Others have decided to create and wear “beauty pageant-style” sashes with positive messages. Campus groups are planning a variety of events to raise awareness about body image.

From the email I sent to the TBPReaders list:

Dear Friends and Colleagues, I woke up this morning and reflected on Friday the 13th – a day of lore and superstition. I am not prone to numerology, but even I know that 13 is a magical number, for so many reasons.

The Beltane Papers’ next issue, #39, is the thirteenth issue I have contributed to as the Review Circle Coordinator. After these many years it is time for me to move on to other projects. It has been a pleasure working on this publication, and particualrly in seeing this issue come together so intimately and so directly.

I will remain a devoted reader, and I look forward to seeing what the new volunteers will bring to us.
* * * * *
My decision to leave was a difficult one, but is the correct action for me at this time.

I have given my time, my money, and my best efforts to manifesting a professional, respected, organized, and useful review section for TBP over the course of many years now. In all of the areas that were under my control, I succeeded. I know that Marione was deeply pleased with my abilities and contributions. She trusted me and we worked well together. 

When I came on board TBP the review section was a random collection of writings, most of which were written by Marione and the other volunteers because there was no one else. I envisioned a circle of women that changed in personnel, but remained steady and were held to deadlines that allowed for plenty of production time in each issue. Marione had faith in my vision and my first issue as Coordinator fulfilled that goal. My next ambition was to create a website where our ‘overflow’ reviews were published. This was a direct response to our having between 50 and 75 reviews ‘on hand,’ and room for maybe 20 in each printed issue. It seemed to me that it would increase our exposure, make the website a repository of useful data, and increase the visibility of both our review circle and the artists we were discussing.  My website was hard to update, but functional and again Marione and I were pleased with the result.  It was given over to Krishanna a number of years ago, and then to Lise.

I won’t make any bones about it: Lise’s site is distressing, and has been for years. She and I don’t see eye to eye in how it should function, or its importance, and I have given up that fight. Don’t get distracted, though: it is also not the main reason I am leaving. I am leaving because Lise and I do not work well together. Marione was the buffer between us, and without her the tension is too high for me to function well within. 

I remain a subscriber of this wonderful magazine, and I have plans to support the community in the ways I know best: I am using my work to create the review site I have always wanted to create for TBP (www.facingnorth.net/index.php is the beta site).

And so, in joy and sorrow, I am closing one chapter, and opening another.

Blessed be!

(If you are interested at the beginning of this portion of the tale, please see my blog entry on August 23rd)

One of the fundamental rules of life is this: The wife always wins. This is not a bad thing, and I’m a wife myself so I support this rule wholeheartedly . Its reality, and a good way to go through life. (OK, the spouse always wins, is that better?) I am not referring to some dramatic moment of tension within a couple’s history, but the fact that each couple must choose to stand together, rather than allow others to come between them.

And if that means that your partner doesn’t like one of your friends (or used to, but no longer does) then: the wife wins. And you no longer have that friend. A wife/spouse/partner is a person to be celebrated and cherished and the one with whom you must stick — for better or worse, through wealth and famine, in sickness and in health. That is a sacred vow and a sacred obligation

My friend’s spouse remains to angry with me to communicate, and that breach will (from this vantage point) never be healed. My friend has always done her best to be honest with me, and has worked as hard as she could to heal the gaping wound that appeared. No fingers need point, there is no more to be done. The wife always wins. 

The patient died on the table. We did our best, but there were no signs of life, and so we pulled the plug. We did so in sorrow, but also with honesty and a sense of necessity. This is the season of endings and our farewell has the feeling of rightness that accompanies correct action.

Blessed be.