Tao Tuesdays: Chapter 69

I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!
I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!

Who needs Taco Tuesdays when you can have Tao Tuesdays? I am sure that Einstein would have really loved this…

Here is How it Works

I will post a chapter of the Tao Te Ching each Tuesday.  (My version – you can see all of the chapters on my List of Chapters page if you want to work ahead!) I will put a Mr. Linky entry form with it so that you can write your OWN commentary to the chapter on your own blog and then come back here after you post and add your link! Simple! (Please add the DIRECT link to your post about that particular chapter to make it easy for our readers!)

Tao Tuesdays: Chapter 68

I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!
I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!

Who needs Taco Tuesdays when you can have Tao Tuesdays? I am sure that Einstein would have really loved this…

Here is How it Works

I will post a chapter of the Tao Te Ching each Tuesday.  (My version – you can see all of the chapters on my List of Chapters page if you want to work ahead!) I will put a Mr. Linky entry form with it so that you can write your OWN commentary to the chapter on your own blog and then come back here after you post and add your link! Simple! (Please add the DIRECT link to your post about that particular chapter to make it easy for our readers!)

Scattered Life Collective: Oct 3rd

scattered_life_collective

This post was inspired by a blogging adventure  called Scattered Life Collective by Cynthia Lee. It’s a great series and I hope that you will check out the rest of the participants and perhaps even join us!
——-

current time: 9:57 AM

on the menu:  ciabatta with hummus slathered deep & lots of veggies. My husband and I have been eating less than 10 grams of added sugar a day for almost three weeks now. We have both lost some weight, although our scales like to play tricks on us and test our endurance. I’ve loosened up somewhat on not eating meat or dairy since I am now also not eating sugar and my rebellious nature just can’t take too many shoulds at once. To say “loosened up”, I mean that I am eating an occasional bit of meat and an even more occasional bit of cheese. Cheeseits count. 0 grams of sugar. Ha. An allowable cheat. Box unfortunately within arm’s length of my couch spot. Danger.

So I think that I could safely say that “what’s on the menu” has been a pretty constant topic in our house lately. Before this, when my husband asked “what’s for dinner?”  it meant: “Are Tatia and I  going to be eating something on our own or are you going to find a way to cook something vegan for yourself while at the same time cooking something non-vegan for us?” Now, it means: “What can we all eat that has the least amount of added sugar as possible?” I must say that it is working – reducing sugar has definitely given all of us the opportunity to shed a few pounds and feel a bit lighter in this world and we are better for it. I am so excited for my husband and it appears that he is also excited for himself on this renewed interest in eating well. I am happy that my family is joining me and we can make decisions together about our food.

My lunches are pretty much all vegan and mostly 0 grams of added sugar now that we’ve figured out what those things are. Breakfast is still oatmeal, which is both vegan and 0 grams of sugar. My vegan self is happy with this.

 

Tao Tuesdays: Chapter 67

I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!
I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!

Who needs Taco Tuesdays when you can have Tao Tuesdays? I am sure that Einstein would have really loved this…

Here is How it Works

I will post a chapter of the Tao Te Ching each Tuesday.  (My version – you can see all of the chapters on my List of Chapters page if you want to work ahead!) I will put a Mr. Linky entry form with it so that you can write your OWN commentary to the chapter on your own blog and then come back here after you post and add your link! Simple! (Please add the DIRECT link to your post about that particular chapter to make it easy for our readers!)

I Ching Hexagram #13: Kindred

70px-Iching-hexagram-13.svg

 

The Ancient Duke in Chinese tradition was a great man. His grandson, King Wen, was the man famous for creating the arrangement of the I Ching as we now know it. That little broken line in this hexagram represents the Ancient Duke – a great yin leader amongst many yang players.  The Ancient Duke gave up his kingdom in order to save his people. When his territory was overthrown, he willingly left so that the invaders would not go to war with his people. His people loved him so dearly that they followed him and created a new territory, which later became known as the Zhou Nation. (See Deng Ming-Dao’s I Ching version of this chapter for greater details.)

Community groups that have a shared vision have great potential. This hexagram is about that sort of shared goal. What does your community stand for? If you live in one of the many residential communities in the U.S., that goal may not be clear. People are disjointed, each living in their own separated home with separated lives. Gaining a sense of community is sometimes harder for those of us who are not part of a church, synagogue, etc. I have struggled with this for some time.  For me, this sense of community has somewhat been filled through my friends, my work, my gym and through my wonderful artist and bloggers and through the healer’s retreat that we visit once a year, but it does not seem like that is enough for me. I often long for a time outside my own lifetime when people lived in tribal communities and shared many things – an ancient time that has not been part of my direct experience in this lifetime. I often wonder, do we all long for that? Is that a part of being human or is it just me?

My_Family

This is my family, taken a few years ago during one of our weeklong camping trips.

 

My family of origin is spread throughout the U.S. To me, this is my closest sense of community. When we get together, usually about once a year, we cook, talk and play together for about a week. It is wonderful. Next year, my oldest niece is getting married. She is the first of my niece’s and nephews to marry and start a new generation. Although I would say that we are a community, I am not sure that I could say that we had a common goal except to say that we want to keep each other safe and support each other throughout our lives.  We stay connected regularly through a website where we add notes to each other about our lives and through phone calls and visits.

I am curious… what has your experience been? Where do you find community? Have you found a way to find connection towards a common goal? Please let me know in the comments. I would love to hear more about your communities.

Tao Tuesdays: Chapter 66

I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!
I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!

Who needs Taco Tuesdays when you can have Tao Tuesdays? I am sure that Einstein would have really loved this…

Here is How it Works

I will post a chapter of the Tao Te Ching each Tuesday.  (My version – you can see all of the chapters on my List of Chapters page if you want to work ahead!) I will put a Mr. Linky entry form with it so that you can write your OWN commentary to the chapter on your own blog and then come back here after you post and add your link! Simple! (Please add the DIRECT link to your post about that particular chapter to make it easy for our readers!)

Scattered Life Collective: September 19th

scattered_life_collective

This post was inspired by a blogging adventure  called Scattered Life Collective by Cynthia Lee. It’s a great series and I hope that you will check out the rest of the participants and perhaps even join us!
——-

current time: 8:35 AM

on the menu:  Caribou Coffee’s Spinach & Swiss Mini. Only 1 g of sugar! OK, so you need the back story…

My sisters and I are participating in a social community called FatSecret (FatSecret.com) and we started a challenge this week that has us NOT weighing ourselves for two weeks so we can see how much we’ve lost in two weeks. Now, I could have just stuck with my normal food intake but I haven’t been doing very well in the weight loss department. I have been tracking my food intake (which is very helpful, by the way, if you’ve never tried it!) and my weight has gone down some but hasn’t gone down as fast as theirs did.

So, I decided that I would give up sugar for two weeks. My two sisters have given up sugar for months now and I just wasn’t ready. I was eating LESS sugar but not giving it up altogether. Sunday night, I was sitting on the couch with my husband and daughter looking for something to watch. As we reviewed the new releases, I saw the movie Fed Up appear. I had been wanting to see this movie about childhood obesity. To my great surprise, both my daughter and my husband were also excited to see it! (Generally, they do NOT get into any of my dieting ideas. They normally just want to eat whatever they want.) When the movie was over, both my daughter and my husband said that they wanted to join me in the no sugar thing! So what we decided to do was to eat less than 10 grams of sugar a day. The reason we chose this amount was because this is the amount that the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends. Actually, they WANTED to recommend this amount but it was never published because the U.S. government fought it and won. (Read this post to learn all about it.)

So we are reading all our labels and if sugar is on the ingredient list, then we look at how many grams it is. We are not counting fruit because that is healthy and if you eat it whole, the fiber content negates the negative effects of the fruit sugar. We are not counting whole foods that are naturally sweet like tomatoes, either. We are counting sugars from molasses and honey. I am not counting stevia, since this does not have the same effect on blood sugar that other sweet foods do. Our goal is to eat less than 10 grams a day and so far, it is has been remarkable.

Without sugar in our diet, food tastes much better! We are all somewhat foodies, and have been very surprised at how good everything is tasting this week! Fruit is a special treat. What I have noticed is that sugar is a distractor. If sugar is available, we want to eat it above all else. So we eat, say, a granola bar instead of an apple. This is the default for our brains after so much conditioning through media and habit. I have also noticed that, because food is tasting so much better in foods without sugar that I suspect that sugar is added to mask the taste in foods that are not really good tasting like processed crap. I have also noticed that, usually, the foods labeled as “for a healthy heart” or likewise, have more sugar added because they have removed the fat but added sugar instead!

I will keep you posted on our progress. It’s a great adventure.

Sacred Beginnings: Mystery

Fort

 

I am having fun with this random post idea from Mornings with Mary. Each day is a new word to consider and today’s word is Mystery.

The Tao Te Ching is full of mystery. Starting with its author, there has been speculation over the centuries as to whether or not Lao Tzu was actually a real person. Some say that it was many people who wrote the text. Certainly there have been many authors supporting the text throughout its history. Does it matter if Lao Tzu was real or not? I think the fact that his life is relatively unknown gives us an even greater appreciation of his message. Wouldn’t that be just how he would have wanted it?

From the very first chapter, it is revealed that the study of Tao is “a doorway to the mysteries of life”. What are these mysteries? In true Taoist fashion, these mysteries are contained within the most mundane things. We can observe our lives carefully to find the patterns that have been played out over all of human history. These basic patterns, which everyone ignores because they are so basic and normal, help us to figure out our world – but only if we pay close attention to them.

This type of mystery cannot be solved. To solve it would dissolve its value. As my husband commented the other day, “No spiritual seeker really wants to find the answer.” This is true. We just revel in the mystery.

 

 

Tao Tuesdays: Chapter 65

I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!
I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!

Who needs Taco Tuesdays when you can have Tao Tuesdays? I am sure that Einstein would have really loved this…

Here is How it Works

I will post a chapter of the Tao Te Ching each Tuesday.  (My version – you can see all of the chapters on my List of Chapters page if you want to work ahead!) I will put a Mr. Linky entry form with it so that you can write your OWN commentary to the chapter on your own blog and then come back here after you post and add your link! Simple! (Please add the DIRECT link to your post about that particular chapter to make it easy for our readers!)

Tao Tuesdays: Chapter 64

I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!
I got this great photo at www.hetemeel.com!

Who needs Taco Tuesdays when you can have Tao Tuesdays? I am sure that Einstein would have really loved this…

Here is How it Works

I will post a chapter of the Tao Te Ching each Tuesday.  (My version – you can see all of the chapters on my List of Chapters page if you want to work ahead!) I will put a Mr. Linky entry form with it so that you can write your OWN commentary to the chapter on your own blog and then come back here after you post and add your link! Simple! (Please add the DIRECT link to your post about that particular chapter to make it easy for our readers!)

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