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random observations, thoughts on life, humorous stories....from the studio while I paint.
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Posted 08/13/2010 at 06:27 AM by superkat

So last night was the Perseid Meteor Shower. There are three major ones every year, the Perseids (August), Leonids (October) and the Orionids (December). A little background for you:

"The Perseid meteor shower has been observed for about 2000 years, with the earliest information on this meteor shower coming from the Far East. Some Catholics refer to the Perseids as the “tears of St. Lawrence”, since August 10 is the date of that saint’s martyrdom. Originating from the constellation Perseus, Perseid Meteor Showers are active this year 2010 from July 23 to August 24. However, it will peak on the night of August 12, 2010 where 60 or more meteors per hour will be visible in the sky."

It is quite a show. I spread a blanket out on the driveway, a few camping pillows...some combos, binoculars...and coffee and watched as the streaks of blue white light cascaded across the sky. It brought to mind a couple of quotes by Carl Sagan:

“Are we an exceptionally unlikely accident or is the universe brimming over with intelligence? (It's) a vital question for understanding ourselves and our history,”

And when i thought about this...I realized that I am only a minute portion of what could be. It was a humbling thought. I've watched closely over my lifetime, especially within the last year, how people's egos or inflated attitudes about themselves can infiltrate other people's lives to the point of destruction. How people can become so wrapped up in finding ways to vindicate themselves, or to seek retribution, that they forget the simple ripple theory.

It would not be a rare occurrence in our lifetime to engage in some type of group, or group activity. We could encounter these groups in the work force, a social activity, or in the educational setting. However, it does not matter what type of group we may encounter, the entity of the group itself will remain the same. Each group will be a system composed of parts that, in all reality, affect each other and the system as a whole. That is why as parts of a group we must understand different ways the "interconnected" parts can influence the groups in which we engage. The ripple effect is a great analogy for describing how one single part of the system can influence the entire system. The ripple effect would extend across the entire system just as if you were to take a rock and throw it into a pond. The initial force of the rock would cause not just one ripple throughout the pond, but also many ripples that would expand throughout the entire pond. Depending on the size of the get the idea.

Regardless of our intentions, if we are not inclined to think of others, or are so caught up in our own misfortunes, we can cast a stone into the water at a specific target and yet disturb something else perhaps miles down the shore, again, depending on the size of the stone.

No matter how you perceive this, we all, at one time or another, have created a ripple. It disturbs the natural motion of the water, the tide...the life under the surface...and sometimes we carelessly engage in what we have not thought out...the consequences of our actions that can occur long after the visible ripple is gone. I could go into a long diatribe on semiclassical and quantum physics, but some of you may not understand...and it is my intent that you DO understand. Confounding the simple with science would probably defeat my purpose here.

Dear Carl, so many good quotes, "For me, it is far better to grasp the Universe as it really is than to persist in delusion, however satisfying and reassuring." He really had something here. Some people can "grasp" things better than others. And it is important to recognize that not everyone catches on at the same rate of speed or under the same conditions. That is the essence of forgiveness. It is also significant that some people THINK they've got a grip on reality. Or SOMEONE ELSE'S reality. And this is where things get dicey.

“It is one of the commonest of mistakes to consider that the limit of our power of perception is also the limit of all there is to perceive.” ~C. W. Leadbeater

The worst mistake someone can make is to judge based on perception. Judgements prevent us from seeing the good that lies beyond appearances. Lawrence G. Lovasik said this, "It is just as cowardly to judge an absent person as it is wicked to strike a defenseless one. Only the ignorant and narrow-minded gossip, for they speak of persons instead of things.” This is so true. I grew up in a household FULL of narrow-minded people. My father, the biggest one of all. So stubborn in his cruel to those who did not agree with him, share his convictions...that when he got sick, when the rheumatoid arthritis began to eat away at his health, he had very few friends left to help him. Only the people that loved him despite his faults hung around..and even then, they were afraid to help because they were so used to him lashing out while he was strong and healthy. However, as his health declined, so did he narrow-minded viewpoint on life. He softened.

My father and I were not close. We hardly ever spoke to each other. Until I was 21, I didn't even think he knew my first name. Honestly. But I loved him. More than anyone else in my family...because his love was so very hard to get in return. It made me work harder to prove myself to him. It took energy and strength and forgiveness to overcome the walls he put up and to ignore the ripples from the stones that others cast on him. The best i could do was to NOT engage in any activities that would further hurt this man. I could only offer my heart to him and promise him that no matter how he hurt me, my mom, my brothers, or anyone else, that I would never stop loving him. It wasn't easy. And I wasn't perfect. We had horrendous arguments. We threw things at each other...and yet...I could still go to him when I was hurt, or scared, lay my head on his chest and say, "Daddy, I need you to hold me." And he was there.

On May 28th, Dad gave up his fight with 56 years old. Later on, we discovered that he stopped taking all his medications almost 3 months before he was admitted to the hospital. He literally allowed himself to die. The last real conversation I had with my Dad was when I had returned from Singapore where i had been on business. We sat at the kitchen table and he told me how to "handle" my life. He said that he never wanted me to be what he had become. He said, "Kathi, not only must you keep an open mind, but you must have an open heart, because if you don't, you will wind up alienating the very people you love." He also told me I was stubborn and spoiled, but that I was always his little girl, and the most beautiful child, young woman, he had ever seen. He was taken to the hospital the next day. A stroke. Many strokes. He was hooked up to a respirator...such a robust full of life when I was a child..and here he was, hooked up to all sorts of machines...weak, thin...dying...and I cried. My mother, so cold, had distance herself from him years was just me...and my Dad...and a notepad and pencil. The doctors were flying in medicine from Los Angeles to try and save him...but as I looked in his beautiful blue eyes...I knew. He knew. He was frightened...and I had never seen that. It broke me. He took the pad and pencil and wrote simply, "I love you." Three words he had NEVER uttered to me in my entire life. Never. And in minutes...he was gone. You wanna talk about ripples? Try that one. Think about that...and realize...that the greatest ripple one can one of love...and understanding and loyalty.

I've thrown a lot of rocks in my lifetime. Some of the ripples have been good, some bad...some incredibly bad. But if you can get to the shore before the consequences of your ripple'd be surprised at what you can prevent...or...if you've tossed the right stone...what you can reap.

“Blessed are they who see beautiful things in humble places where other people see nothing.”
~ Camille ****arro

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  1. Old Comment
    superkat's Avatar
    i feel a theme coming on.....

    "The Eisenhower interstate system requires that one mile in every five must be straight. These straight sections are usable as airstrips in times of war or other emergencies. "
    Posted 08/29/2010 at 08:59 PM by superkat superkat is offline
  2. Old Comment
    Mmckibben's Avatar
    lol, that would be hard to do in the mountains.
    Posted 08/29/2010 at 10:44 PM by Mmckibben Mmckibben is offline

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