Happy Passover and Easter

Posted Thursday, April 21st, 2011. Filed Under Voices of wisdom | 1 Comment

I love this time of year. I celebrate Passover and when this time comes each year I think about the choices I make and want to make and how I want to live my life.

I sent around a note wishing my friends and family a wonderful Passover and I received a reply from a friend of mine, Susie. I wanted to share with you what she said to me: “I also love this time of year and the story of Passover. We can all relate on a personal level. Unlike ancient times, we are no longer oppressed, but many times we CHOOSE to keep ourselves in bondage. Let’s hope it doesn’t take us 40 years to realize we can break those chains!!!”

Life is about choices … this week in my daily dose I added a story around this topic. We have the choice to be the victim, to be unhappy, to be down, to feel not good enough, fat, stupid and so on. That is the voice of our inner critic that we are allowing to keep us in the “bondage” and “chains” of what we believe and think. The great news is we do have the power to change this and change our thinking, feeling an beliefs. It is something that is simple, NOT EASY. Why, because to really break the chains and come out of our self-subscribed bondage we need to break cycles, shift paradigms and begin to love and honour ourself.

This is true whether it is on an individual level or macro, country level. Our limiting beliefs can hold us back OR we can choose to break those cycles and beliefs and begin to create what we want. We are seeing this around the world in Libya, Egypt and other parts of the Middle East. I find it ironic that with Passover taking place in Egypt that currently the youth and others are fighting against their oppression. May G-d hear their cries and listen to the peope and bring about democracy and freedom.

It does all begin with gratitude for where we are at and what we have. Be thankful for all that is in your life. From there you can begin to make the changes you want to make. It is baby steps and does take time.

For me this year, 2011, is the Year of the Breakthrough. I have been doing that, personally and professionally. When I think in terms of time how long I have been working to do this it is relatively a short period of time. While you are in the thick of it, it seems much longer. It is worth it. Having a great support group around you is crucial.

Let’s be in the here and now…. Happy Passover and Happy Easter to all my family and friends.

All my love,

Sandra

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I have read so many articles from How Feminism changed the world to Will an Arab awakening empower women? to (Saudi) PRINCE QUESTIONS BAN ON WOMEN DRIVERS to finally Why do Western feminists forget their Mideast Sisters?.

I wanted to start with the Feminist movement and what it did for women in the Western world. Robert Fulford, in his article, How feminism changed the world, posted in National Post on Saturday, March 5th, 2011 stated,”Only feminism can claim to have broadened, permanently, the lives of half the humans in the West. Its success, based on earnest arguments and improvised political strategies, is without parallel in the last century. Nothing since has done so much to expand opportunity. Feminism has altered a whole culture’s ideal version of sexual roles. It has changed the professions, most strikingly medicine and law. It has affected how children are raised, how the law deals with domestic life, how corporations and public institutions are staffed”.

As a women in her 40s I am grateful for all that has transpired for I know without the strength of these women who “fought for me”, my life may be totally different.

Over the course of the years I do find that the women’s movement took on a very “male energy” – women must be tough, work harder, prove themselves, at times be aggressive (versus males who are assertive). Some of my women bosses were down right rude and mean. If feel that women felt that in order to be seen as equal to men they needed to act like men. This energy was consistent with what we have seen over the last 30 years. This is changing.

The world energy is shifting and we are seeing systems breaking down, physical impacts through hurricanes, tornadoes, earthquakes and tsunamis, and finally political uprisings – change is needed and wanted. The male dictators of the past – driven by their egos – are no longer wanted or needed. Myself, and many others are seeing major shifts in energy. As we move towards 2012 we are moving to a more balanced energy. Male energy is shifting to one of speaking our truth, setting boundaries, stating our value and worth and most importantly transparency and walking our talk. There is also the feminine energy which is more apparent: respect, compassion, collaboration, caring and people coming together to make a difference. There are more social entrepreneurs than ever before- where you can create a business around an idea that is making a difference.

The uprising in the Mideast is a movement that I hope women benefit from. For too long their basic human rights have been denied. In his article, , Avi Benlolo talks about a great influence on the feminist movement in the West. Mary Wollstonecraft published in 1792 the first feminist declaration of independence, A Vindication of the Rights of Women. She took advantage by seizing the moment and connecting with the cathartic social revolutions already taking place in England (end of monarchy/Industrial Revolution and social and parliamentary reform) , France (French Revolution 1789) and the United States (American Revolution 1775). By publishing the manifesto she gave a voice to women and eventually lead to their full and equal rights.

Avi Benlolo states, “In similar fashion, this is the time for the Wollstonecrafts in the Arab world to raise their voices and demand their freedom…. If the Arab protesters are truly calling for freedom and democracy, it must surely include women.”

We are living in a great time — yes upheaval in the Mideast – that is how change happens and we can begin to create the world we want to see: where are humans are equal and have the right to their basic needs being met. One article that really stuck out for me is a comment by Lesley Shore, Why do Western feminists forget their Mideast sisters? What struck me about this article in response to another article is that the author brought up food for thought. She says, “Why the silence from the feminists about the lives of Middle Eastern women? Because for Western feminists to take a stand regarding the lives of women – for example, the 40 Million, Saudi women who can neither read nor write, let alone drive a car – would be cultural imperialism.” She goes on to tell a story. One student, a teacher who spends her summers building and advising a school in Tanzania, described how the mothers of the community came to her for help in saving their daughters from female circumcision. Another student, an avowed feminist, argues that we women of the West were in no position to judge the practice of a culture different from our own. A third student from China, spoke: “My grandmother had her feet bound. It crippled her. That was a revered cultural tradition but it was not a good thing.”

I love this story. Do we allow our fellow women to suffer because of a cultural or political choices that are accepted however not good for them.

I hope that the Arab women in Diaspora begin to speak out and say ENOUGH. I also encourage all women, to join their voice and say that the cultural practices are not in the best interest and health of these women.

Women of the West we are fortunate and lucky. Let’s return to our intuitive, compassionate and loving ways and come together regardless of socio-economic, political, religious or cultural backgrounds. If we unite we can make a difference.

Have a wonderful weekend.

All my love,

Sandra

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The Shift In Energy In the Middle East

Posted Thursday, February 24th, 2011. Filed Under Voices of youth | Leave a Comment

I was not happy that the price of gas is $1.21 a litre today. To fill my car costs $72.60. If I really look at what I am paying for it is the price of freedom and democracy for countries like Libya, Egypt, Yemen and so on. People are dying and I am worried about the price of gas? We are all affected somehow; Some more directly and others, like Canada, are really only feeling the superficial wounds.

I do not want to see people die however history has dictated that freedom/democracy has its cost — often the cost of human life. If you look at any revolution or coup life is almost always lost. It is sad, however, we must be grateful to those that give their lives so that others can live as free, democratic souls.

Egypt was the catalyst for change in the middle east. The people, mostly young, are saying ENOUGH — we want change. The domino effect has been tremendous and swift. The collective energy in this part of the world is vibrating so high — change is imminent.

What we can do for these countries is to send lots of love and light; Pray that change happens for the best interest of human kind and where the most basic of human rights is met. Let us hope that there is as little bloodshed as possible in order to bring about this tremendous change. We can sign petitions and make sure our voices are heard – that we care what happens to our brothers and sisters. Stop the bloodshed!

As for the dictators — they are so ego driven that losing their stature is more than they can bear. Yes, most have stolen enough money to live in a life of luxury. The truth is that they will be isolated and living in their own prison. I hope that those that deserve to be tried are and that justice prevails. The more important fact is that by deposing these dictators we are opening up room for new leadership.

First will come transition and it will likely not be easy however with patience and guidance these countries can begin to create a thriving environment full of jobs, creating infrastructure and more. The raw talent is already in these countries — they may just need our help in guiding them. Let’s empower them, teach and guide them so that they can take the reins for themselves!

So, for all those grumpy people who are unhappy about the price of gas… it is the least we can do to contribute to helping the countries of the Middle East create a democratic and free country where the most basic human rights are met.

Have an amazing weekend!

All my love,

Sandra

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We are very fortunate in Canada and take a lot for granted. I was just speaking with a friend of mine and we were talking about the situation in Egypt. The outcome can change the course of the Middle East which has some very concerned. I believe it can also be a good thing.

The youth is speaking up and they are demanding democracy – freedom of speech, jobs, ability to make choices, and so on. We in Canada, what can I say, our apathy is prevalent. There is SO MUCH to be grateful for yet we take so much for granted. We wake up, choose what we want to wear, what we want to eat, where we want to work (for the most part), who we want to see and so on. These luxuries are not common to all humankind. Yet so many Canadians are stressed and unhappy. Meanwhile we have every freedom available to us. It is up to us to make ourselves and our lives the way we want it.

We, as humans, like to blame others for our condition yet we always play a part. I find it ironic that I see ads on tv or read an article in the newspaper how we as Canadians need to be more responsible on how we spend. Granted I do agree with that. Our debt/equity ratio is poor and more and more Canadians (as well as peoples from so many other countries) are not in a good financial position. SAYING THAT, what about our Government with a Deficit that will take 7 years to clear. Mirror mirror on the wall.

I have talked about this before, accountability and responsibility is something that seems to be going by the wayside. Not just here in Canada but all over the world: U.S., Greece, Ireland, Spain, Egypt and the list goes on. We must get back to that and in doing so we can begin to walk our talk and make better choices: personally, in our businesses and in our Governments.

The National Post ran a series talking about Canada, “the Nanny State” – discussing how because we have access to things, for instance our health care, that we do not feel compelled to take care of ourselves better and thus take advantage of an already stretched system. Going to the doctor is easy however if it cost us each time we might think otherwise and only go when we really feel something is wrong.

You cannot blame Canadians completely we have so much propaganda thrown at us by the Medical and Pharmaceutical companies and we buy into their “stuff”: the flu shot, H1N1, and so on.

It will be nice to see that as humans we take control and full responsibility for our choices. By doing so we can begin to change things: our environment – less reliance on oil and find a substitute that is more environmentally friendly, health – be more proactive and move away from the idea of “cure” and move towards healing, innovation – reduce the red tape that exists especially in Ontario and allow our entrepreneurs to thrive and grow and compete on a global level.

We do not need to rebel like the Egyptian youth for they are fighting for basic human rights. We, in Canada, have this luxury. What we need to do is on a personal level begin to take responsibility for our choices and outcome. By doing so will shift everything – the reflection of this will be seen in our businesses, our economy, our politics and especially in our Government.

If not for you then for your children, begin to walk your talk — make yourself accountable and responsible.

I want to wish you a “personally responsible” weekend – you make it whatever you want!

All my love,

Sandra

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