Tag Archives: service

Going With the Flow

15 Jun

Personal Review: Journaled the desired outcome last night of an important meeting scheduled for today. Had some surprises along the way to the actual time of the meeting but stayed positive and refused to give in to defeatist thinking. Business Partner picked me up – just a tad late – and we were off to the designated place of meeting!

I sent a quick text off to my prospect, a friend, to let him know we were on the way. Then came the call in response. A crisis had developed presenting a fire that he had to put out. Very apologetic. Promised to call later. We turned around and came back.

As I walked into my apartment building, I weighed the events in terms of my personal desires. Then I started to consider the developments in terms of my friend’s dilemma and what it could mean in terms of some very important programs for which he was trying to get support.

Then it came to me. A very clear picture presented itself of how I might really be of service to this gentleman and provide him an alternative means of achieving his lofty goals. I clearly saw how I could be of service to him.

I shot off a quick text, knowing he would be on his way to a committee meeting, thanking him for his communication and letting him know that I hoped we would have the chance to speak or meet later as he had suggested in our brief conversation. Then I let him know that regardless of how things went this evening, I believed I had a solution.

I realized that I held an answer that might provide my friend a key to salvaging an otherwise dismal and potentially catastrophic development, affecting thousands of people who were depending on help from his programs. I filled with an appreciation of how all things work together for the ultimate good. I envisioned a scenario that strengthened his position and created an autonomy for his programs.

In his book, Change Your Thoughts, Change Your Life; Living the Wisdom of the Tao, Dr. Wayne Dyer speaks about “rearranging priorities to ensure contentment” in relationship to the 3rd verse of the Tao Te Ching by Lao Tzu

“Practice not doing…

When action is pure and selfless,

Everything settles into its own perfect place.”

Thus Dyer’s interpretation of this translation of Verse 3 is that we are being told to trust The Source (God/Creator) and know that there is something much loftier than our egos driving our existence.

He also suggests replacing our personal desires with the simple but profound “Tao-centered question: How may I serve?”

I was anticipating this meeting for days because I had placed an importance of its outcome to my success. It was all about what it meant to me and my goals. But then I heard the panic in my friend’s voice as he spoke of possibly losing everything in regards to what he was trying to build. As I began searching for what I could take out of all this that was positive…that’s when it became evident that I had a way to help to minimize his pain.

Paradoxically, I feel more enthusiastic because it’s no longer about me. It’s about how I can be of service to my friend. I just had to sit and smile because it reminded me of the many times my  spiritual mentor and Elder, Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha has shared with us the true way to happiness is through service to others.

“……. When man is strong enough to truly look at himself objectively, he will find it happened when he was totally involved in service to others.  This is when we remember and the question is answered of who and what we are.  Then and only then, can we see clearly and know Great Spirit.” -Pa’Ris’Ha Taylor*

* © 1994 Pa’Ris’Ha © Copyright 2007 Parisha Online. All Rights Reserved.

DISCLAIMER: All the opinions expressed in any articles, blog posts and Internet content written by me are my own and do not reflect the opinions or beliefs of any individuals or organizations with whom I associate.

©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: ALL quotes and/or materials from other authors or sources remain the sole property of the original authors/source.)

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What IS the Meaning of Life?

14 May

What I know for sure is that what you give comes back to you. –Oprah Winfrey

Betty White has shared recently in some TV interviews about her mother’s wonderful perspective on death. She says that her mother used to tell her that no one really knows what that moment is like until they go through it – so she used to call it “the Secret.”  When someone they knew died, Betty’s Mother would just say, “Well, now they know ‘the Secret’.”

When we’re in our twenties we think we have all the answers. The adults in our lives are clueless, or so we think. Or maybe they are. It seems the longer I live and the closer I move towards my encounter with “the Secret” – all I have are more and more questions.

Life is a Mystery.

When I contemplate the meaning of life – one single humanoid span of existence on the planet – against a backdrop of Eternity, it can seem pretty insignificant. Yet I know that we are each Unique, we are each Essential and, Everything has Purpose.

I also have come to realize, as my spiritual mentor and Elder, Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha, often states: Everything is exactly On Time.

One other thing I have come to appreciate is that our existence here is about Service. We are here to interconnect and interact and invest our energies, resources and time in the well being of others. It can be ongoing involvement or it can be a spontaneous act of kindness. It can be volunteering, participating in a “Walk for the Cure” or similar event, or holding a door for someone, or just smiling or taking a moment to listen. It is through such activity that fulfillment can be realized.

Whether or not I know the true meaning of life – I do know that living in service will give meaning to the time we spend living.

“Speak to all gently and with real compliment. See yourself in everyone and thus knowing God Is and Oneness as real. Love, love with the love you really are, fear not and let it flow and touch everyone and all things…” – Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha*

* © 2011  Pa’Ris’Ha.  All Rights Reserved

DISCLAIMER: All the opinions expressed in any articles, blog posts and Internet content written by me are my own and do not reflect the opinions or beliefs of any individuals or organizations with whom I associate.

©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: ALL quotes and/or materials from other authors or sources remain the sole property of the original authors/source.)

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Service Driven

20 Apr

“When we wish and seek to help others, our attitude is more positive and relationships become easier. We are less afraid and have less anxiety. Otherwise we remain shy and hesitant, and feel the need to take a thousand precautions before we approach people. When our intentions are good, we have greater self-confidence and are stronger. This is how we learn to understand how precious and valuable kindness is.”  –Dalai Lama

When you have something that you know will help others then you’re not bothering them by getting them the information. My job as the representative of a service that can benefit everyone is to get them the information. Their job is to act on it or not. My job is finished with the hand-off. I don’t need to convince, I just need to inform.

When I keep service uppermost in my mind then I am approaching people from a mind-set of helping them with a service. Zig Ziglar is known for saying you will always get what you want if you just help enough other people get what they want.

My business and spiritual mentor, whom I also call Elder, Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha has demonstrated, through a life of service, the empowerment of bringing service into every aspect of one’s life. Service is not a separate activity you do, but a way of life that is interwoven through your personal, professional and spiritual life.

If I am timid or shy about my services, then I will withhold information. First and foremost I have to believe in my product, my service, or I shouldn’t be offering it. I never know who is in need of what I have to offer, but if I offer it to everyone I encounter, I will find those who have been waiting for someone like me to show up in their lives.

“Vast opportunities are in the greatest chaos, and when you are in discomfort and fear. In comfort you are stagnant; in discomfort you cannot control and must meet the occasion called progress and development.” -Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha*

*© 1986-2011 Parisha Taylor. All rights reserved.

DISCLAIMER: All the opinions expressed in any articles, blog posts and Internet content written by me are my own and do not reflect the opinions or beliefs of any individuals or organizations with whom I associate.

©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: ALL quotes and/or materials from other authors or sources remain the sole property of the original authors/source.)

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A Good Day

5 Feb

I’ve had an extraordinary adventure this evening. It started with a casual meeting in a second-hand store a few weeks back. An older gentleman approached me and asked about a sweater he had tried on, if I thought he looked good in it. We got to talking and as one thing let to another I shared with him about our retreat and conference center in southeastern Ohio. He was interested in learning more, and he had also shared a pet project he was working on to start a jobs program for ex-cons to help them with re-entry into the work world. I gave him my business card and he gave me his number and we promised to get together to learn more about each other’s projects.

After a subsequent phone conversation in which it became apparent that we might be able to help each other out, we decided to meet. When the time came this evening, I found myself feeling a bit nervous.

So I called a man whom I call my Brother from my extended spiritual family who resides in town here and asked if he would be available to pick me up in case I needed to jump out of the car or run out of a building. My loving and supportive brother made no fun of my question but simply and emphatically said he would be available if needed. Then I promised to call him once I got back. Just knowing that someone knew where I was going and that I had back-up took away my edginess. And I felt loved!

I then called a woman back home at our retreat and conference center, one whom I call Sister as part of my extended spiritual family. She assisted me as we worked together through a formula we have to map out our intentions for an event. This helped to crystallize the outcome I had in mind when I agreed to the meeting.

I was ready.

My get-together with this gentleman went very well. He had agreed to stop at an office store where I had emailed some documents to be copied – information I wanted to give him to pass along to some others of influence. While waiting to pick up my copies from the desk I noticed a young man of Asian descent with a man who wore the garments of a Buddhist Lama.

I overheard as they presented en envelope to the clerk and asked about getting the address scanned and reproduced as labels. Knowing that this would be fairly expensive if done by the copy center, I offered my business card to the young man and told them to email what they wanted on the labels and I would make a template for them and email it to them. I told them it would be my service to them.

They were very pleased. I felt my spiritual mentor and Elder Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha smiling over my shoulder, as she so often demonstrates to us the value of a life of service.

As always, I stood in awe and wonder of the synchronicity of the moment – of all the elements to come together in Time and Space that I would walk into that store at the precise moment those two gentlemen would step up to the counter with their question.

“I trust that everything happens for a reason, even when we’re not wise enough to see it.” – Oprah Winfrey

We then proceeded to drive over to the near west side of the city to deliver some cakes that the gentleman had in his car. We arrived at a faith-based street mission. It was somewhat ironic since the gentleman is very “Old World Jewish.” But when we proceeded into the modest building, it was obvious the man was well-known there – through his service. We were both greeted warmly.

There was food and coffee and cookies and cakes. People sat at tables and in chairs near the entrance. The front of the room had a makeshift stage.

We stayed for a man to deliver the message of the evening – a minister who had recently lost his pastoral assignment and was obviously coming back on his own road of new beginnings. His message was sincere and simple. Basically, it was about Service. How may I serve as opposed to what can I get? I just smiled and kept feeling my Grandmother’s presence.

I looked into the faces of those sitting at the tables. Young, old, black, white. Many of them were undoubtedly homeless, others looked burdened. But they seemed to brighten with this humble man’s message. And for the moment, they were inside, away from the cold and getting a decent meal.

After the message, my friend and I went into the back where there were pool tables and children’s play things, but the room was deserted for the moment. We talked about the retreat center and as I had hoped, I was successful in conveying my passion for what we have achieved thus far and what the vast potential for it remains to be fulfilled. He caught the fire!

We went back out into the main room and I talked with the older woman who is the organizer of the place before we left. She was talking with a man who looked like he had been out in the cold for a while, and possibly had been drinking. She went down into the basement and brought up a bundle of clothes for him, and a small backpack, while in the background people continued to visit, play card games and eat around the various tables.

We said our goodbyes and went back out into the cold, but I felt a warmth inside that transcended the external temperature.

What a gift this evening has been! What an adventure! All because I dared to strike up a conversation with a stranger.

When I arrived back at my building I called my brother and shared with him a little about my experience. I’m sure I’ll be going back again to that little Street Mission with my friend – probably take my guitar next time.

It’s been a good day and my basket is filled to overflowing with blessings!

“Want success? Just count the good things of each day and give grateful acknowledgment that you have allowed it to be part of your day!” – Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha

To the Giver That Gives All I give deep appreciation!  -Deborah Adler/Great Doe

©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: All quotes remain the sole property of the original authors.)

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Living in the Now

24 Jan

Living in the Now means seizing every moment and being aware of the opportunities for connections and service.

My Father died in 1997. I had come home to be with him for his final months. We both knew I had returned to “spend the rest of his life” with him. The night before he died, there had been an awkward moment between us, very minor, but nevertheless it took place right before he and I both retired for the night.  On my way to the bathroom, I passed by his room as he was preparing to go to bed. He was seated on his bed, back to the doorway, no clothes on. I felt an overwhelming desire to say “I love you, Dad” from where I stood, but hesitated and then quietly went on my way, choosing not to “disturb” him.

That was my last chance. He died of congestive heart failure in the middle of the night.

When I look back on that night, I have come to realize that I was in observance of a Being who was contemplating its need to move on. Perhaps that was what was behind my instinct to say “good-bye.” I sensed there was something, but neglected to act on it.

I can’t change that sequence of events today. Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha has written:

“When you play with processes and continue to relive old wounds and habits, what is the value to it?  Is this intelligent?…STOP…Stop this waste of your sacred being.”

Today I use the experience to remind me of the importance of connecting with people when I am given the opportunity. Fact is I’m given the opportunity every single day over and over again. We all are. People pass us on the streets or walk into our space and instead of being oblivious to them we can treat them as an opportunity to greet God-Creator-The Source looking back at us.

It’s really important to take every opportunity we are given to let someone know they are a significant part of our life. “I appreciate you” is especially powerful. “I love you” even more so.

It’s so easy to become all caught up in our own little pre-occupations, like the lady who recently fell into a fountain at a mall while texting on her phone! That’s an extreme example, but it’s right on.

When I stay aware of my surroundings and tuned in to the people around me, I have an opportunity to enrich my life by learning from another, or helping someone.

At the end of the day, there is a sense of loneliness that can prevail if I’ve not reached out to others. But when I make it a priority to open myself to not only receive from those around me but more importantly I have looked for ways to give – to express appreciation, or find a way to assist someone or lighten their day – then there is a sense of Oneness that comes. That’s a good feeling. It’s one we can all benefit from.

“The more boundless your vision, the more real you are.”
— Deepak Chopra

©2011 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved. (NOTE: All quotes remain the sole property of the original authors.)

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Christmas Day 2010

25 Dec

It’s been a quiet day, but definitely a good one. Yesterday, after discovering that I was too late to be able to volunteer for one church’s dinner for the homeless or the local soup kitchen’s holiday dinner, I decided to make my own volunteer opportunity.

I called a local Senior Citizen Assisted Living Home and asked if I could come on Christmas Day to sing. Unlike the recorded messages I had encountered from the other organizations, I was greeted by a very excited receptionist who put me on brief hold and then came back to the phone with and enthusiastic response, “Is 1:30 pm okay?”

“Sure,” I said, trying to conceal my slight surprise. Wow. No having to clear it through an Administrator, no “gotta sign up weeks in advance” – just “Yes!”

I was really grateful.

This morning, I had to plot out my bus routes and coordinate transfers, etc. – then once I had that done, I pulled out my 12-string guitar and wrote out some Christmas Carol titles with keys I would play them in.

I set out on my adventure. The buses hardly had any people on them. Interestingly enough a woman boarded the first bus at the same time I did who was also on my final bus coming back. Turns out she had spent her afternoon visiting a woman at another nursing home, whose adult children are gone, that she has visited regularly for 14 years. What a gift!

Although I arrived a little early, the receptionist was glad to see me and they were already set up and ready to gather the residents. They assembled slowly – some arriving after I had begun, but everyone sang along even as we repeated some of the popular favorites.

At one point one of the ladies left her chair and knelt down in front of one of the other ladies in her chair. She started patting the woman on her arms and took her arms in her hands and started moving them to the music and the woman seemed to come alive after that. She sang along with the rest of us on each of the songs.

We had a wonderful time and it seemed as though no one wanted to leave – myself included. I went to each person individually and hugged and kissed them, wishing them Merry Christmas. I thanked them; they thanked me and invited me to return. It was really special.

Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha recently shared through Twitter (@Pa_Ris_Ha ) “There is joy always if we accept that life is none other than time exchanged for experience. Exchange it in service to all creation!”

I have also come to appreciate in my work with Grandmother that “Time” is the only thing we spend that once it’s gone, we can never get back. Our Time is the most precious commodity we have. To spend it with others in service is to give it the greatest value you possibly could.

Oprah Winfrey says, “I define joy as a sustained sense of well-being and internal peace – a connection to what matters.”

In the end, our personal connections are all we really have. Relationships are what we are here to experience and learn from. There’s no amount of money that could buy the joy I experienced today. My life is richer for being touched by each of those lovely people today. They will forever be a part of me, even if I never see them again.

But I’ll be back. Now we have a connection. 🙂

©2010 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved.

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We Are The Ones We Are Waiting For

13 Dec

In the present circumstances, no one can afford to assume that someone else will solve their problems. Each one of us has a responsibility to help guide our global family in the right direction. Good wishes are not sufficient; we must become actively engaged.  -Dalai Lama

I have a friend who constantly laments the fact that the government doesn’t take care of poverty, elder care, hunger, etc. “They should be doing something about that,” she exclaims in frustration.

That seems to be a commonly held belief. The problem with that, as I have tried to point out to my friend, is that if the government truly is “of the people, by the people, for the people” – then we, the people are responsible. We need to be active in solution finding.

As a child I was fascinated with African Cultures. I read every book I could get my hands on. I loved reading about how, in Traditional Societies, many of the “social welfare” functions handled by government agencies in our society were incorporated into the Community structure.

If a woman’s husband died, she and her children were taken into the husband’s brother’s household. There was no such thing as an orphaned child because they were taken into a household within the community. No one was left as an outsider – the circle of Family/Community simply expanded to encompass them.

We are all One in the Global Community. None has demonstrated that so clearly as the one known as Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha, my Spiritual Mentor and Elder. She is in constant service to others, and encouraging those who work with her to be the same.

One weekend a group of us put together box lunches, and a bag with notebook and pencil and some other personal items, and took to the streets in downtown Columbus, Ohio. Our mission: to find homeless people to share the food and items with.

We found plenty of them – in the cold of that wintery day. There were men and women of all ages and walks of life under bridges, sleeping in doorways.  Some of them were skeptical, some of them were gruff, but they all accepted our gifts.

Some of them shared their stories. One of my associates, Michael, was so moved when he found an entire family that was trying to stay together because the father had been downsized out of a job and there were no “family” shelters for them to go to – he removed the leather coat he had on and gave it to the man. More importantly, he listened with an open heart and mind to the other man’s story and showed him respect.

Maybe that doesn’t seem like much to some. But that man got a message that someone cared that day, and my friend’s life was enriched by his experience forever.

The point is: there’s no one going to rescue us from our problems – whether they’re personal, regional, national, or planetary. As I have often heard Grandmother Pa’Ris’Ha share, we are the ones we are waiting for!

As we take responsibility for our own circumstances, rather than play the victim, we free ourselves of constraints of time and resource that others buy into with a “lack” or “helpless” mentality.  Then we free ourselves to realize that as we give we receive. If we want more time, we need to give more time to others. If we want more love in our life, we need to extend love freely to others.

Giving of our time, being of service to others creates a ripple that emanates outward to impact “our global family.’ It’s in the one-on-one where we can truly make a difference.

©2010 Deborah Adler. All rights reserved.

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