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Started by maureen. Last reply by Jane Young Jul 12, 2010. 4 Replies

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Comment by myron joshua on January 13, 2009 at 10:54am
My father was at a dinner for some charity. My Dad never like publicity..so he walked out before they started declaring donations, etc..

When the master of ceremonies called out my father's name and there was no reply, he didn't relent..Every so often he checked to see if Mr. Joshua is in the room. "Mr Joshua has made a donation. Are you in with us now?"
Finally when my dad returned after that part of the dinner was over the MC got up once again and made a big to do..thanking my father for the donation (with or without mentioning the sum, i dont remember)..

Later a friend told my parents that she heard people say, "My, how much mileage the Joshua's get out of their donation!"

Stories are smiles from the past..Donating now will add a smile on your face today..and on the faces of others tomorrow.

IPeace has ways of doing this, for example David's group: Aid to the Children of Gaza.
Join the group.......and donate.
Comment by Easy on January 13, 2009 at 6:44am
I travel all over the country (USA) with my job as a photographer and I thought you would get a lesson from this little story.

I have visited a lot of places in the last 5 years and learned a lot from just being myself. I visited a city in Northern Michigan last summer that was one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. I always arrive early to get a feel for the area where I will be working and this day was no different. I have the uncanny ability to feel people and know my surroundings very easily. I am usually very happy and it takes a lot to get a reaction from me.

This particular town and this story is amazing. I was walking through one of the main stores in town an a little girl of 5 or 6 walks up to me and grabs my hand. She then asks me am I okay. Puzzled, I asked her what did she mean ? She told me I had got burned and wanted to know if I was alright.

About this time I noticed a lady and a man standing close with their mouths hanging open in surprise. I asked her if she had ever seen another person like me and she said no. I have been in towns and cities where the were no black people before but nothing like this. Trying to figure out how to handle this so she would understand what I was trying to say was a little challenging at the moment. I asked her if she watched t v. She said no she wasn't allowed to. She could only watch videos that were picked out by her parents.

Then I remembered Dora the explorer , i asked if she knew who that was and she said yes. Then I said do you remember the princess ? Yes was the response. I said okay Did you notice that the Princess and Dora were different but the same ? What do you mean she asked me ? I told her that the Princess was close to her color and Dora was close to mine and did she see that we are all different but the same. She said I got it and ran to her dad and started to tell him what I said.

Her mother walked up to me and asked if I was offended by her daughters comment. I told her no, because She was innocently expressing concern for another person. I told her that she was raising a good child but that she needed to be exposed to more than just cartoons. She was really surprised that I was talking to her very calmly and said that she expected me to lose my mind and blow up at her.

Now I was starting to understand myself what was going on. This town had very little if any interaction with a black person and only knew what they read or saw on television.

My little visit made an impact on just about everybody in the town. When it was time to setup and do my shots just about everyone in town had heard about what had happened, knew my name and it was just a great experience. The Manager of the area where I was set up was even surprised. He told me later that he had never seen anything like this before. The feeling in this place was very warm and welcoming for the rest of my time there.

I guess what I am trying to say is don't shelter your children, Hatred ,prejudice,selfishness and anger are Not in children when they are born. They are taught to them by their surroundings. Educate them. Let them know the truth and show them We are all the same no matter how different we are. There is good and there is bad everywhere. Don't assume that because you think something that, that is the way it is. Don't judge everybody by one person, for that matter don't judge anyone. accept them for who they are. If you can't do that then they aren't the problem, YOU ARE.

One person can make a difference.

Easy
Comment by Stephanie on January 13, 2009 at 12:51am
Wolf
I really think your story is a great one. THAT IS THE KIND of story we should be looking for here....like I said SMILE making
It is a beauty and thanks for sharing it, and its lovely meaning.
Stephanie
Comment by Fayssal Chafaki on January 13, 2009 at 12:09am
This is a story I have written in 2003 entitled The Scary Night Visitour.

The Scary Night Visitor.


Not every night could have passed safely since once a Shadow showed to break my warm sleeping. It was first around two after midnight when I jumped out of the bed, that unreasonably. Why have I been awake at such time; whereas, I know only the morning to do so? There may be something wrong about this unexpected disturbance, especially when one is comfortably dormant. It may also be a danger, knowing that I had no company except my books, myself and a big house empty but from walls. Plenty doors, many windows , and rooms that I could not count, alongside with a backyard garden , were all under my eye surveillance day -and- night and nobody else for I really locked myself inside that house . That special night, I remembered but my finger moving to turn the light on. I stood towards a cup of water. I drank. And I plunged again into the bed, trying to recognise sleep as death's brother. However, suddenly, a touch on my shoulder changed this recognition into an overt realization about horror.

It was what I have never imagined to see. Not a monster, not a ghoul, not even a demon whom a prayer may cast off, but rather a body of dense grey smoke that reached the roof. I struggled to be on my feet, to have the room lit again, to chase away this fear that kept all my moves paralyzed. It was impossible for me to stand, and I was still under my bed cover, when that thing began to grow bigger, producing some weird utterances, no human language, a mixture between cry and hissing. These words were to give some meaning somehow close to being understood when they fell this way in rhyme:

Prepare thineself to fear
Before thy face 'nd hear
The screamful calls o' doom
Down 'The Bridge of Khazad-dum'.

I hath of fire a whip
To skin the sinful imp,
To show 'm the depths o’ Hell,
And to burry 'm there well.

‘Bless my soul be alive! ‘, shivered I. ‘For the sake of heaven, what have I done to be wretched by this never seen creature?’ All those calls and answers were as if cut from my breathing, and I could not, of course, remove the cover. It started to weigh heavier as if a mountain upon my chest, squeezing painfully. I visited the depths of underground, the darkness beneath the surface of earth, the Realm of the Dead, and every narrow path leading to sorrow, being in another state of mind. I saw the gates of the Blazing Fire. I could not run. I could not escape. I was as still as a statue and the ground began to swift under my feet. Happenstance, and by a twinkling instance, had I found myself stuck to a half-broken trunk, down an endless valley. ‘By heaven, what more perils may be awaiting me? ‘, was my last call when a silence reigned over.

That silence before every tempest; for this Enemy has caught my leg and thrown I to nowhere. My body splashed against a great rock. I tried to be up but another one knocked my head, and it was all inside darkness. I let my hand guiding me into this grave-like room that could not even fit a dwarf. It was rounded _ I did not know how I found myself there in total dimness, blind though my eyes were open to see _ and like a cage made of stones with only a hole allowing few air. I realised about my loss. ‘Shall I stay here for an eternity? ‘, wondered I with tears able to drop. Nothing else was heard then, but my weeping, my loud broken sobbing and my infinite wailing that made me soaked to the skin by the fluid of my eyeballs. I asked for the help of Himalone: ‘Rescue this weak servant of Thine, O One! Find him a way out! Show him Guidance, for none but Thee can do!’

After a while, I saw a timid gleam, through the small hole, shining tenderly over a strange writing carved on the ground of the cave. It needed some cleaning, but I had myself to scrabble roughly to make it readable. Doing so, my eyes first fell on a word well-known, See, and an expression beyond the reach of my understanding, be 't no Hell, and more ye shall see ! There was another writing but not in our words. It may be the secret say by which this prison shall open its door. It was hard to grasp. A unique form, gathering, like a tree, more than four words at once. Each word was circled by five others, and it stretched forth to three separated sentences. No one could read it under such stressful fear, but I managed to have a clear sight of it. It helped no meaning for me as there was no way to know whose language was this. I stayed there in dismay, loathing the days that made my fall so easy, the fact of being a coward rather than a brave one, and blaming my own self for the lack of courage I did not have. Desperate as I were, my decision to look through the hole was finally taken. I saw really nothing bringing hope. The same gleam disturbed my vision of the so other-world. ‘One may live to see one's end potted like this!’ said I in disgust, ‘Damn it, useless words, shall I be repeating “See, be 't no Hell, and more ye shall see!” for the rest of my existence? Then my life ...’ I was interrupted by a vociferous noise to which everything responded by quaking, shaking, cracking, and collapsing into pieces. This was the second unforeseen fall. This time, I kept bounding, leap after leap, on an already burned ground. The grass itself, not green, was a glue-like one. I was full of dirt, even to my nose. I stood with pain and, to my frightening, saw a giant body holding the leach of two giant dogs, to which my blood completely dried up. One bark was enough to make me kneel; more barking and they were unleashed. They came straight to swallow me. I fled hurrily; for shouting whup was not to drive these dogs away. I added to my speed but they were still behind me. Sometimes their biting was too close; sometimes their sharp claws tore my clothes. One more steps and I found myself trapped like an easy prey. The dogs’ feet were upon my body, waiting for their master to show. ‘What are you waiting for? ‘, shouted I, ‘Devour me! Make me your food! Do it!’ Now my hands were able to drop the bed cover out of my face. Now, I woke up almost breathless and trembling like an old. ‘My sakes! Was this really a nightmare, or what? ‘, have I replied to myself earnestly.


To say that this was a simple nightmare sounded doubtful inside my mind. By this moment, the sun began to rise chasing every sample of fear. The room itself was nourished by a humble light. That grey smoke that scared me left no trace, as if nothing has appeared at all. To feel more secured, I disengaged from the bed and went to prepare some hot drink. Once done, I sat by the kitchen window dosing and thinking. ‘Unbelievable! ‘, I said to myself, ‘This place may be haunted, or am I little bit troubled trusting such illusions? It is so harsh a dream to endure, or telling me a dream may come true, I cannot believe it!’ So, I made up my mind, with the last poughs that filled my lungs, to have my hands busy rather than annoying my thoughts by who dares not loom up in daylight. I opened all the windows, which seemed to welcome the day, swept all the dust away, washed some yesterday dishes and entered a room full of tools ready to stay in for the rest of the morning. Not even a fly came to harass me during my work, not even after I had a perfect meal .Later on by the afternoon, everything was silent except some singing birdies, some passing vehicles by intervals of time and a couple of noisy cats meowing as they fought beside a trash . I spent hours balancing in an armchair, turning the pages of a book about plants, contemplating over the neighbourhood and feeling the comfort of the day. The sun did her duty and started to leave. The first flickering stars took place, one after the other, forming a luminous dance in the sky. Then came the night. Everything had to be reordered, windows shut, rooms checked and locked _ two of which were kept lit on purpose _ and the big front door tightly fixed, beside the alarm set in case a burglar may aim the house.

It were no bed time yet. Having brought a woolly carpet and a pillow to one of these countless rooms, I laid myself before a screen changing channels every five minutes. To my pain added the news of a calamity. The loss of hundred lives made me suffer for a considerable time. ‘All the sadness of the world comes by night!’, I said to myself with much grief. ‘Mercy! What is wrong with these days? Fear that thing may show again and I shall have a weapon, a very effective weapon indeed!’ At that I descended the staircase to arm myself obviously with a sword, a real reflecting blade, through which one's face may be perfectly mirrored. I came back to where the news were still announced and put gently that ancient grandparents’ gift beside me, adding a touch of tenderness. ‘Let any one be an inch from me, then I will spare him apart.’, have I told myself in a brave manner when at the same time, unanticipated this befell, I heard a door slumming abruptly. It was that of my bedroom. It repeated opening and closing more than four times, I got startled, as if someone wanted to destroy it.

End of First Night.

Fayssal Chafaki.
Comment by wolf brolley on January 12, 2009 at 11:06pm
i was traveling in Tibet ~ part pilgrimage and part medical relief trip for nomadic communities. We (the medical practitioners) had set up shop in a temple courtyard and the crowd of seekers was quite overwhelming. Despite the hollering and corraling of our own Tibetan friends trying to maintain order, the situation was chaotic at best. It was nearly impossible to tell if people were circling around to obtain "seconds" on meds that we were dispensing. Minor elbowing and position jockeying were raising a tension level that shouldn't have been present. Some locals seemed to be intentionally milling and loitering very close to our large duffel of supplies. One very difficult aspect of medical relief work is to let go of expectations and attachment to the outcomes. All the wonderful plans and dreams of heroic measures that will change lives can boil down to digging latrines, or teaching people to wash their hands, or ventilate their cooking areas, etc. As i've told others contemplating doing this kind of work abroad: you do what is needed --- not necessarily what you thought was needed.

Back to Tibet: in an effort to keep the situation under better control, to make sure that we didn't lose our supply of meds (some of which we would need for our own health concerns while on pilgrimage), and to ensure that people got the right medicines we moved the supply up some very rickety stairs to the courtyard balcony. And i became the guardian keeper of the pills and ointments -- and there were constantly pushy individuals that thought they could come up to me and point at their heads or their stomachs and then put out their hands and i would simply hand over magic pills... Unfortunately, this situation required my being hardnosed and refusing anyone that hadn't seen one of our medical staff first. Time and again one particular individual would be coming up the stairs, smiling at me and nodding his head. Time and again i would have to shoo him back down the stairs, trying patiently to tell him he would have to see one of our staff before i could/would give him anything.

Time and this fellow's unceasing persistence wore me down... i finally allowed him up to the balcony ready for some dramatic display of a hacking cough, or an Oscar award winning headache... My guess was leaning towards a suspect stomach complaint as he reached his hand inside his voluminous outer robe. He drew his hand out and gracefully draped a ceremonial kata around my neck ~ honoring me and the work we were doing for his community. Surprised and humiliated by my suspicions --not to mention my repeated and steadfast refusals to allow him up-- i bowed to him in gratitude. A bow for the kata, and a bow for the lesson.

Peace,
wolf
Comment by Stephanie on January 12, 2009 at 10:23pm
MISS MABLE, sewing teacher
I was a child, about 13 or so. My sewing teacher Miss Mable was not very likeable, in fact, she seemed to be mad at the world. She was grumpy, and unpleasant, but still, she taught us how to sew in our class in the San Fernando Valley, outside of Los Angeles.
I liked to sew but wasn't good at it. I made a few things, but the sleeveless shirt I made was sewn inside out. I just knew that she was going to give me a low grade, and I didn't deserve any better.
For Christmas the girls in the class put their money together to buy her a present: a wastepaper basket (trashcan, rubbish bin, for our foreign readers).
She opened it, and CRIED!!! She was so touched by our generosity. I remember that moment with a touching bit of happy/sadness. And after our gift, she gave me the average grade of "C". And years later I became pretty good at sewing, and definitely even better at creating things with fabric, perhaps thanks to her.
Comment by ♥ Sara ♥ Raleiah ♥ on January 12, 2009 at 5:42pm
The Secret of Happiness

A certain merchant sent his son to the wisest of all men to learn the Secret of Happiness. The youth walked during forty days by a desert until he arrived to a beautiful castle, at the top of a mountain. There lived the wise one he was looking for.

However, instead of finding a holy man, our hero entered into a large room and he saw an immense activity; merchants entered and left, people conversing at the corners, a small orchestra playing soft melodies and a table full with the most delicious dishes of that region of the world.

The sage conversed with everybody, and the youth had to wait two hours to be attended. The sage listened attentively to the motive of his visit, but said that at that moment he did not have time to explain the Secret of Happiness. He suggested him to take a walk through the palace and to return two hours later.

"But I want to ask you a favor," added the sage giving him a little spoon of tea in which he poured two drops of oil. "While walking, carry this little spoon with the oil and take care that the oils does not get spilled."

The young man started to climb and descend the stairs of the palace maintaining always his eyes fixed on the spoon. After the two hours had passed, he returned to the presence of the sage.

"How are you? " asked the sage. "Did you see the Persian tapestry in my dining room? Did you see the garden that the Master of Gardeners took ten years to create? Did you notice the beautiful parchments of my library?"

The youth embarrassed, confessed that he had not seen anything. His only worry had been not to spill the drops of oil the sage had entrusted him.

"So then go back and know the marvels of my world," the Sage said. "You cannot trust a man without knowing his house."

Already more relaxed, the youth took again the spoon and went back to stroll through the palace, this time looking with attention to all the works of art adorning the ceiling and the walls.

He saw the gardens, the mountains surrounding them, the delicacy of the flowers, the care with which every work of art was placed on its place. After returning to the presence of the Sage, he recounted in detail all he had seen.

"But where are the two drops of oils I entrusted you?" asked the Sage. The young one looked at the spoon and noticed he had spilled them.

"So this is the only advise I can give you." said the Wisest of all the Wise One. "The Secret of Happiness is in looking to all the marvels of the world, but without ever forgetting the two drops of oils in the spoon."

“The Secret of Happiness is in knowing to enjoy the greatest pleasures of life without forgetting the little things we have in our reach"...
Comment by Stephanie on January 12, 2009 at 5:23pm
Hello everyone
Doesn't everyone have a little story to share? It doesn't have to be a huge one, just one that ends in a smile - walking outdoors and meeting someone, a phonecall, a letter, something when you were a child.....a happy remembrance. So that anyone, anytime can come and read something that will pick up their spirits.
Shouldn't be that difficult to remember just one story.......
Thinking of us all
Stephanie
ps I really am trying to keep this just to happy ending stories, no videos, no sad stories, no other stuff. Thanks
Comment by Dave Willsey on January 12, 2009 at 5:22pm
Stephanie,
This is a story I've read many times for inspiration. It is from from Rachel Remen's book My Grandfather's Blessings. It reminds me that even our worst suffering may have something to teach us.
Dave
---------------------------------------------
Wrestling With the Angel
by Rachel Naomi Remen

Sometimes a wound is the place where we encounter life for the first time, where we come to know its power and its ways. Wounded, we may find a wisdom that will enable us to live better than any knowledge and may glimpse a view of ourselves and of life which is both true and unexpected.

Almost the last story that my grandfather told me was about a man called Jacob who had been attacked in the night as he slept alone by the banks of a river. He had been travelling and when he had stopped to make his meal and settle down to sleep, the place had seemed safe enough. But it was not so. He awakened to find himself gripped by muscular arms and pinned to the ground. It was so dark that he could not see his enemy but he could feel his power. Gathering all of his strength, he began to struggle to be free.

"Was it a nightmare, Grandpa?" I said hopefully. I often suffered from nightmares back then and had to sleep with a night-light on. I moved closer to my grandfather and took his hand. "No, Neshume-le," he answered, "it was quite real but it happened a long time ago. Jacob could hear his attacker's breath, he could feel the cloth of his garments, he could even smell him. Jacob was a very strong man, but even using all of his strength he could not free himself and he could not pin his enemy down either. They were evenly matched and they rolled on the ground and struggled fiercely."

"How long did they struggle Grandpa?" I asked with some anxiety.

"A long, long time, Neshume-le," he replied, "but the darkness does not last forever. Eventually it was dawn and as the light came, Jacob saw that he had been wrestling with an angel."

I was astonished. "A real angel, Grandpa?" I said, "with wings?"

"Yes Neshume-le," he told me, "a strong young man with wings." With the coming of the light, the angel let go of Jacob and tried to leave but Jacob held him fast. 'Let me go,' the angel told Jacob, 'The Light has come.' But Jacob said 'I will not let you go until you bless me.' The angel struggled hard for he wanted badly to escape but Jacob held him close. And so the angel gave him his blessing."

I was very relieved. "Did he leave then Grandpa? Is that the end?" I asked. "Yes," my grandfather said, "but Jacob's leg was hurt in the struggle. Before the angel left he touched him on the place where he was hurt." This was something I could understand, often my mother did this too. "To help it get better, Grandpa?" I asked. But my grandfather shook his head. "I do not think so, Neshume-le. He touches it to remind Jacob of it. He will carry it all of his life. It is his place of remembering."

I was very puzzled by this story. How could it be that one might confuse an angel with an enemy? But grandfather said this was the sort of thing that happened all the time. "Even so," said my grandfather, "it is not the most important part of the story. The most important part of the story is that everything has its blessing."

In the year before he died, my grandfather told me this story several times. Eight or nine years afterwards, in the middle of the night, the disease I have lived with for more than forty-five years declared itself in the most dramatic way imaginable. I had a massive internal hemorrhage. There was no warning at all. I was in coma and hospitalized for months. The darkness and struggle lasted for many years afterwards.

Looking back on it, I have wondered if my grandfather, old and close to the time of his death, had not left me with this story as a compass. It is a puzzling story, a story about the nature of blessings and the nature of enemies. How tempting to let the enemy go and flee. To put the struggle behind you as quickly as possible and get on with your life. Life might be easier then but far less genuine. Perhaps the wisdom lies in engaging the life you have been given as fully and courageously as possible and not letting go until you find the unknown blessing that is in everything.
Comment by ♥ Sara ♥ Raleiah ♥ on January 12, 2009 at 5:17pm
Thanks Steph,
for inviting me here.

Love, Light & Peace to all

Sara
 

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