Monthly Archives: December 2011

2012: The Year of Forgiveness

I’ve been naming my years for a while now. 2009 was The Year of Hesed (lovingkindness).2010 was The Year of the Tao. 2011 was The Year of Living Simply, and for 2012, I’ve chosen The Year of Forgiveness.

I’ve heard that to forgive someone means to merely allow them their path. Very simple, and my experience says that what is simple is best.

Many years ago, I hurt a lot of people who got caught up in my tsunami of self-destruction. I am soul-sorry about that, and everyone that I’m aware of has forgiven me for my actions during those dark times, for which I will be eternally grateful. I needed those times; they were a part of my path to today. Surely I can allow someone else their path.

I find that it’s easier to forgive someone the big transgressions, but what about the guy who cuts me off in traffic? I am usually outwardly calm, but in my head, I’m screaming: “You idiot!” I really don’t want to do that any more, so I’m going to stop it in 2012. I’m going to let the little things flow over me, making “allow them their path” my mantra for the year.

And I’m going to forgive myself, too, on a daily basis, for being imperfect and doing all the stupid things I do. I say the wrong thing all the time, I eat the wrong things, I still am tempted to slide into old behavior patterns. I no longer burn with resentment, but I can chew on a good one for a while before letting it go. I don’t want to do that any more, either, and so I won’t in 2012. Forgiveness is sustainable; resentment is not.

Living consciously is a decision. Each of us is faced with a million tiny decisions every day as to how to react to a million tiny situations. So in 2012, I will react with love in my heart and the perspective that while we all might be on different paths, the goal is the same.

I have a good feeling about what 2012 has to bring.

Happy New Year!

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Filed under Discipline, Learning, peace, Possibilities, relationships, Resentment, Social Consciousness, Spirituality, Sustainability, years

Something Happened To Grandma

My new true-crime book, Something Happened to Grandma,  has just been released in e-book form from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and all electronic formats. Rosetta Books did a fine job, as did Marilyn and Elliott Bardsley from Crimescape.

The Foreword by Marilyn Bardsley:

Gabriel Morris was a rambunctious but adorable child who was probably sexually abused by his father while his mother tried to win back custody of him. He grew into an intelligent and gifted adult, but there was something very wrong. As he grew older, serious character flaws and emotional problems emerged which caused made it impossible for him to hold a job for any length of time. Eventually his deceptions and deep-seated anger caught up with him, precipitating a tragic family crisis.

Elizabeth Engstrom is uniquely positioned to write this story. She lives in Oregon and attended Gabriel Morris’ recent trial, observing both Morris’ behavior and the impact that his crimes had upon his family. Known primarily as a novelist of mystery books with dark psychological landscapes, the chilling story of Gabriel Morris is one that dovetails with both Engstrom’s fiction and nonfiction accomplishments.

As the author of 13 books and more than 250 published short stories, articles and essays. Her most recent novels are York’s Moon, a critically acclaimed mystery, and The Northwoods Chronicles, a wonderful tale of dark fantasy. An author, teacher, editor and former publisher, she is a sought-after panelist, keynote speaker and instructor at writing conferences and conventions around the world. Since she completed her master’s degree in applied theology, she has begun a small interfaith ministry called Love and Mercy Ministries. She is on faculty at the University of Phoenix.  www.elizabethengstrom.com

“Something Happened to Grandma” Cover

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Dear Mr. President:

Dear Mr. President:

As the leader of the greatest nation in the world, I implore you to set politics aside and do the right thing on a variety of issues. Forget Congress. Introduce legislation and let the angels and other celestial planetary advisers do the heavy lifting with regards to encouraging congressional members to do the right thing. Take your case to the American people. They will recognize sustainable changes when they see them.

  1. No more war. Our Department of Defense is for the defense of the citizens. It is not a department of offense. Bring our soldiers home, close foreign bases and spend that money here. War is not sustainable. It is stupid, wasteful and against every spiritual principle there is. We can take a stand of non-engagement.
  2. No more casual, haphazard and wasteful use of finite resources such as fossil fuels. This is irresponsible for our future. Put a harsh progressive tax on these resources and let that inspire and provide incentive for the great minds of American entrepreneurs to come up with inventive ways to create nonpolluting energy sources.
  3. Pollution is ruining our planet and sickening our people. Be bold in legislative regulation of pollutants, regardless of what other countries are doing. We must lead in this regard.
  4. Outlaw cigarettes. It’s crazy that we spend so much money on health care for sick smokers while subsidizing the tobacco industry.
  5. Introduce legislation that allows for term limits in congress. Your office has a term limit; so should each seat in the House and the Senate. The gridlock we are currently experiencing would never happen if there were term limits in congress.

I know that you know that this list could go on and on. We need common sense leadership with an eye not for this term or the next term or for our grandchildren, but we need a visionary who can look 500 years into the future and make plans for our planet that are sustainable. We can’t just keep kicking these cans down the road because it is politically expedient.

Be bold, Mr. President. Be brave. Lead the world.

God Bless.

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Filed under politics, Possibilities, Social Consciousness, Spirituality