Monday, January 31, 2011

Without my friends and family I am nothing...

Ok, so the argument could be made by some that God is all you need; but then are these people not a part of God?
Religion and Spiritual debates aside it is a basic human truth that it is though the love and support of the people we share our lives with that we find hope, faith and strength.  So I dedicate my first blog on this site to that truth.  It is my way of thanking all of you for your patience, your kindness and your faith in both me and my work.  It is my way of giving back just a little to all those who have in the last year and throughout my lifetime given me so much.
Giving back...
Another universal truth; for all the blessings you receive, all the luck that comes your way try always to remember to both  be grateful and to give back as much as you receive.  Call it karmatic harmony, the Golden Rule or whatever your beliefs translate this particular truth into; the basic fundamental principal remains the same.  Give as much if not more than you have received.
Do it for yourself, to encourage your own growth, to ensure your own continuation on the path...
 Do it for others, to share the light you have received...
Do it out of gratitude for the opportunities you have been given...
Do it to maintain the balance that is so essential to the continuation and evolution of the human race...
Do it because your soul, your spirit knows this to be the best thing for you...
Never has there been a time when peace and unity been so important for the advancement and wellbeing of the human race; and yet though the battle rages behind the scenes the true war will be fought and won within.
For only one Victory guarantees rebirth.  Only one war waged balances a new life birthed for every life taken.  Only one battle sees life burst forth from the ashes of death.   Your battle, your war, your internal struggle towards the light...Your personal inevitable Victory over your own personal dark is also your ‘egg of the Phoenix’; it is your doorway to change.
All you need to is step through...
Welcome, to life, to light, to you...
Until next time,
Love, light and laughter to you all
Jean Victoria Norloch

When the student becomes the teacher...

What happens?   Better yet how does it happen?   
There is a balance here in our world that must be maintained – a very precarious balance that defines who and what we are – what  in fact makes our world so very precious...  a balance between all things opposite that make up the diversity and colourful tapestry that is life on our planet.  In among the obvious; light and dark, male and female, good and evil, exists something many of us do not stop to consider. It is the realm of knowledge – I know vs. I do not know...
How hard is it for the average person to say those words?  I don’t know...
How difficult is it for one to admit? I do not know...
So how does the one who has always had the answers suddenly become the one who is asking the questions?  I don’t know, but I do know it happens...
More often than people are willing to admit the ones who have always been around to show us the way, to lift us up, to nullify our fears and reassure us in times of doubt, can disappear, fall, become fearful, lose confidence or become lost themselves.  When this happens what in the world is a student to do?  Take it as an opportunity to test your newly acquired skills and knowledge.  Accept it as a test of your abilities.  Were you listening?  This we would very much like to know...
There is a danger in thinking you have all the answers – a danger in thinking your truth is the only right and real truth.   A danger in fact in believing your message is the only valid message.  This is not to say that your message is not important, of course it is or you would not be driven to share it yet who is to say it is the only message or the only way for others to find their way.
I met a man once; he was a good man with a good heart and a drive to help those in need.  A healer he was who wished for all the world to see it as he saw; beautiful and full of light.   He had a gift, an ability to see into the hearts of others and to recognize their sorrows.  He made it his life’s work to focus on their pain, to explore the cause and effect of it, to work with them regardless of the cost to self until their pain was gone.  He knew that he was only a vessel and a tool for the healing energies that others may not be able to for the moment for themselves control.   He understood that deep within them they knew already the answers to their dilemma, that somewhere buried within they were aware of what caused them grief.  He accepted that these things that they had ignored, pushed aside, refused to recognize were in fact poisoning them on a level that they may not for the moment comprehend or understand.  He found himself in a position of a fond father, worried perhaps for the future of a child who he cared for, seeing a better way and all the while knowing that the answers when given may not be received willingly. 
A good man, concerned for the wellbeing of his fellow man, having lived a full life and having seen a smoother path for those that would follow, intent on sharing what he had learned.  A good man...
Yet somewhere along his path, this man who loved so deeply, this man who cared so much forgot to care for the one person who was in his life the most important.  In looking into the hearts and minds of those he encountered he forgot for the moment to look into his own...  In his attempts to heal other he forgot the importance of healing himself. 
It is all too often proven true that in our attempts to ignore that within ourselves that is not complete we find it so much easier to focus our energies on that within others that seems to us to need to be fixed.  This is how I think the student becomes the teacher, for when the teacher and guide has forgotten to care for that which in turn cares for and heals others it is up to the bravest and boldest of students to say – ‘no – wait stop...’ 
Do we?
Do we in life have the courage to face those who we have looked up to, admired, entrusted our health to?  Do we as students of this life have the courage to tell them that perhaps this moment is not so much about looking at that within me that needs fixing but that within yourself that needs be addressed... Do we as students have the strength to let them know that they cannot not help us if they cannot help themselves?  If we do not, then we were NOT listening...
I met a man, he cared for all those he met, dived deep into their hearts and did his best to heal the hurt that he found – why – because he was not yet willing to dive deep into his own and face the hurt he too had long ago buried and left behind...
I met a man...
Jean Victoria Norloch

To be or not to be... Enlightened? That is the question...

A wise hobbit once said “it’s a dangerous business going out your door, you step onto the road and if you don’t keep your feet there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to...”
Why pull a whimsical quote from a fantastic tale? Only to validate the rest of what I’m about to share with you.  Admittedly J.R. Tolkien’s classic tale of good versus evil would not be considered by most to be a serious teaching tool for those inclined to step onto the path of enlightenment but if one really digs beneath the surface story to the wisdoms buried within the truth cannot be denied; the man knew more than he was letting on.
A journey into self is wrought with danger and it takes a strong will indeed to face the powers of darkness and not be pulled from the path. 
Dangers? Powers of Darkness?  What’s this you say?  Are we at war?
Yes, and no; for those who make the choice to never look in the mirror, there is no battle to be fought.  For those who choose to remain as they are there is no threat to self.  They are as they are and quite content to be as they are will stay as they are wrapped safely within their state of...
I could say complacency, or use the word acceptance yet it does not seem fair nor does it seem appropriate to use those terms.  Obviously one cannot be complacent about issues one has not faced nor can one accept things one does not know to exist.  Whatever you wish to define the state of those who have not yet chosen to step onto the path it cannot be denied that two things are true.  They are exactly where they are supposed to be or they would not be there and they are there because there is where they have for the moment chosen to be.
But wait you say, how can they make that choice if they do not know there is a choice to make?  To this I say, the inner you, the deeper you, the hidden you, that you that is connected to all of us and all that is does know... and it will decide without you what in the end is best for you.  That also is a truth.
What about the others?
The intrepid explorers who brave the unknown, the fearless souls who dive head first into the river of life that flows into the sea of knowledge; what happens to them? When they step out the door away from the safety and security of all they know to be real and true; where is it the wanderer goes?  What do they see and ultimately where do they end up?
That is the ‘key’ question and one that will forever go unanswered buy those who do not take the chance to step onto the road and see for themselves.  For each individual the experience is unique and must be honoured and embraced for its individual nature.
I s this quest for Truth an easy one? Certainly not, for one to begin the first step and often the most difficult is the long hard look into self.  An honest exploration of where you are now is required, an often times harsh remembrance of where you have been is a must and most importantly a free thinking ability to dream without limits about where you are headed is needed if you wish the freedom to get there.
So you take that first tentative step, you look behind you longingly at where you have been, convincing yourself that perhaps back there is not so bad.  It may not always have been easy or pleasant but at least it is a place you know, a place you are comfortable with, a place of familiarity that you have for so long called home.  You look down and see where you are, reflect a moment that this too may not be such a bad place; surely it would be simpler to sit and rest awhile here than to expend the energy needed to take the next step.  Then you look ahead and there off in the distance is a light that catches your eye; a glimpse of what could be.  Suddenly it occurs to you that in order to get a closer look you must will yourself to move forward.
There are a few things you will have to do, some obstacles you may have to overcome but as with any form of exercise (either of the mind or of the body) the more you challenge and push yourself the stronger you become.  There will be much to learn, both about you and the world in which you live, some of which you may take time to digest; fear not, time is always given.   You may find yourself in need of assistance from time to time yet you will quickly discover that you are not alone and as you venture forth you are guaranteed to encounter others like you who are willing to walk a while by your side.  It may happen that they do not stick around for long but those you need will always be there for as long as you need them.  
It doesn’t sound so bad, and perhaps you are thinking then what is this battle I speak of.  It is within you, this war that must be waged.  Some things about you will have to be accepted and embraced by you, some perhaps dissected, questioned even altered.  Eventually there will even be things about you that will need to be forgiven by you, yet in the process of doing so you will in the end learn to love you and that will free you up to be more you than you have ever been. 
It can at times be painful, even scary; there may be that in your life you wish to let go of.  There may even be those you share your life with who you will feel the need to leave behind.  Some of your friends, your family may not understand, some may not wish you to change, some will not wish to accept but then they are not why you are doing this.
Which leads us back to our original question: To be or not to be enlightened...
Is the quest for inner peace, the quest for truth worth the risks, worth the sorrow, worth the loss?  Is it worth the effort?
That you will have to decide for yourself, as I myself am still taking the long stroll down the twisted winding pathway of life and have not yet decided where it is taking me I cannot as of this moment tell you where you will end up.   Of course, as I have explained, each person’s journey is unique and though we may cross paths for a time, share experiences and learn from on another it is not for me to decide how it is you should get where you are going, nor for you to tell me where it is I should be.  I do know, I don’t wish now to go back to where I was, nor would I give up any of the experiences I have had along the way.  I have found that there is more joy than sorrow, that wherever there is darkness there is light and that for every loss endured a new treasure is found.  As for the effort, when you realize part way down the road how strong you actually are, your feet will get lighter, your steps more sure and your pace will quicken; the end result being that before you realize it you have forgotten you were walking and remembered that  you can fly.
Jean Victoria Norloch

They call it Simply Spiritual

And it is...
Simple I mean; but we’ll get back to that.
Lets’ explore that other word for a first.  Dissect it a bit; discuss for a moment its meaning.
Spiritual: defined by the experts at Merriam Webster as being;
1)           Of relating to, consisting of or affecting the Spirit
2)       a) of or relating to scared matters
        b) Ecclesiastical rather than lay or temporal
3)         Concerned with religious values
4)         Related or joined in Spirit
5)     a) of or relating to supernatural beings or phenomenon
        b) Of, relating to or involving spiritualism
Which leaves us where?  In my view nowhere close to simple.
The word itself has so many different meanings that are perceived by the masses in such a vast variety of ways that it would seem impossible for some to accept the word as being simple.  Yet when we get back to the basics, take it down a notch, do away with all the hype and fancy explanations we can find ourselves in a place of simplicity.
There seem to me to be a lot of rules and rituals tied up with this one simple word.  There are a whole collection of do’s and don’ts, instructions and expectations that cause confusion and division.  The trick I think to keeping it simple is to get past all the outside influences and get back to inside where the spirit actually resides.
They call it connected, a state of oneness, being enlightened; I could go on since they call a lot of different things but I feel at the moment as if I would be wasting your time.  You see it is in my heart to tell you today that it doesn’t matter what they call it, all that matters is what it is in your heart that you feel it is.  After much contemplation and consideration I have come to the conclusion that I myself have grown weary of the teachings and guidance of self appointed spiritual leaders.  My reasons for this are my own yet I imagine that if I, a curious soul who is always asking questions has grown tired of those who would force on me their answers then perhaps there are others out there who have also become disillusioned by the whole scenario.
Now don’t get me wrong, the spirit within me is very much alive and well and still at one with the flesh, but then too so is yours.   Perhaps that’s where in lies the confusion, that in this quest for knowledge and inner peace we forget that it is already ours.  There within you, at your core, is the part of you that is, always has been and always will be connected to all that is.  When we tap into the creative side of who we are we discover that our connection to the spirit ties in with our ability to create.  Now in an age when we are being told if we want a better world we have to create it we struggle to figure out with the help of others how exactly to go about it. 
We seek answers outside ourselves; we go out into the world and look for that connection.  We rely on the wisdoms and guidance of others to lead us to it yet it has never been something that we need to find.  It’s yours, right here, right now and it’s not going anywhere.  You see as much as we are human, prone to mistakes and full at times of doubt and fear we are also all born of the spirit.   Being born of it, we are a part of it, it is a part of us and therefore our connection to it can never be severed from it.  Immortal, never ending, not needing to redeemed or saved we are as we are perfect and complete and simply cannot be anything else but that perfection.    
I guess that’s what makes it simple.
Simply put whatever it is in within you that dreams of a better tomorrow, that yearns to create a better world, whatever is in you that envisions something greater, more beautiful and more profound ; that is your you.  Make it your reality...
Pick up a pen, write a tale that tells a story of love, a story of hope, a story that inspires.   Pick up a brush and paint a picture that causes the viewer to stop and ponder it’s meaning.  Write a poem that whispers to the reader the secrets of the ancients, the secrets of your soul.  Sing, full of joy and gratitude for all that we have been gifted, or just hum a tune that catches the ear of those walking by. 
That is your connection, your creation done by you for you and benefitting all of us. 
I will never understand why we choose to complicate matters, why we choose to add things to the mix that seem to confuse the issue.  It’s really not that hard.  Basic and simple, a thing we all feel in our hearts to be a truth that when you walk out the door you are connected to all that you see and when you lay your head down at night to rest you are connected to all that is, it will never be any other way.
Spirituality and religion are often used to teach us things like compassion, understanding, empathy and love but honestly your heart already knows these things; perhaps it is only that today your you has chosen not to listen to your heart; or perhaps you were listening but have been afraid to allow others share in what you have heard.
We are all here together, and we all hold within us a magical ability to be and do whatever it is we wish, through our art, our vision, our creative energy there flows forth the change that our world needs, longs for and will have if we learn to let go and flow with it.
They say peace comes from within which means that it’s already there within you.  So maybe, just maybe the time has come to stop searching for it and just start living it.
That would be keeping it simple.
Jean Victoria Norloch

The Spreading of a Young Warriors Wings...

When is the last time you asked a child’s opinion?
When is the last time you sat down with one of our youth, looked them in the eye and asked them “what do YOU think?”
My next question is why?
I’ve spent a large part of the last year diving into the minds of our youth and I have to tell you it was a highly educational experience.  I ask why  only because I know that many of us, myself included, neglect to give attention to the very real needs and concerns of those we are planning on giving this world to when we are done with it.  The very people we have in fact borrowed this planet from.
Shortly after asking the question of ‘why’, I am forced to follow up with the very pointed question of ‘what took us so long’.
They have a right to be involved in the decisions that affect them.  They do live here with us; they share our space, our energy, our world.  At times as unfortunate as it is, we forget.  We push them aside, we say things like “you wouldn’t understand”, “you are too young”, or “or let the adults deal with this, we have seen more, have more experience, in short, we know more”.
Do we?  Who is more closely connected to the source that created us all?  Our Youth; pure,  not jet jaded, tainted or embittered by the ‘realities’ of our world.   Realities created by us and defined for us by our years of experience.  They see more clearly the vast potential, beauty and power of our world than many of us ever will; unitl that is we twist their minds with doubt and fear. 
Often thought by adults as not being capable of absorbing, understanding or being able to handle the ‘facts’ they exist in a world where they see a clearly defined need for change and feel powerless to do anything to initiate that change. 
Angels with wings that have been temporarily clipped, this is how I view the majority of our youth today.
It is often said of late that humanity needs unite; that here and now in this place and time a massive battle is underway.  War is being waged in defence of our planet and our survival as a race.  A revolution of spirit, fought by an army of earth angels disguised as human fighters for freedom.  Sadly we have left out our most potent and powerful ally.  There on the sidelines of the battle ground sits a contingency of our army that have not yet been allowed to join the fray.
Why; who are we protecting?
Are we protecting them?  Are we thinking they will get hurt emotionally, scarred and damaged by the things they see?  Are we really so blind as to assume that they don’t already know; that they have not seen what our world has become?
They see it and they want something done about it.
Are we perhaps protecting ourselves, our precious ego...?
If we ask them for help, then we will have to admit both to ourselves and to them that yes, we messed up, and no, we cannot fix it alone.  That has to hurt our pride just a little, being the all powerful adults that we must ask a mere child for help.
Thing is, they are ready, they are waiting and many of them already know what needs to be done. Though it may surprise some of you, they are in fact already doing it. 
One excellent and eye opening example is Simon Jackson, founder to the Spirit Bear Youth Coalition.  He was a tender age of 13 yrs when he began his war against the mighty logging companies that were threatening the habitat of a rare breed called the Spirit Bear.  Not only did he win, not only does he now head up one of the largest youth coalitions for environmental awareness but his life (yes all 13 precious years of it) and story made such a large impact that they made an incredibly inspiring movie to tell his tale.  You can check him and his organization out at the following link –  or Google ‘The Spirit Bear Youth Coalition'.
Or watch a short clip of him here...
Once you are done taking this amazing tour of what it is to find your voice and use it; reflect for a brief moment on the fact that this incredible man was only 13 when he chose to turn the world he knew on its head.
My point?  That’s one kid, one young person who believed his contribution mattered.  One small voice raised above the noise of society to shout, “I can, I will, I AM”.  One small child who realized he could fly.
What happens when we encourage them all to spread their wings and take flight...?
Jean Victoria Norloch

The Blame Game...

There is much discussion of late with regards to the true nature of ‘reality’ and what it means to be human.  Often we are told by the masters of self that our world is merely a reflection of our own thoughts and feelings and I wonder is there tangible physical proof of this wide held ancient belief.  I think that this universal truth is never so evident than in our relationships to those who are closest to us.   It is often said that a smile may be passed onto another, that a life lived in peace and harmony will in turn bring a sense of peace to those touched by that life.  We see it all the time, in the beauty of a kind word or good deed, a smile offered to a stranger; the proof as they say is in the pudding and once all the ingredients of a happy life are put together it is easy to see what such a life is able to create through the simple act of merely being.  As with all things in our world, a world built on balance there is however a part of this universal law that produces the opposite effect and that is the reflection of our own fears and doubts manifested in how we interact and react to those around us. 
Although it may seem too complex a theory to some when we discuss it in terms of lower and higher vibrations there is a very basic natural truth in the way people respond to people.  They do so as a direct result of how they feel about themselves.  As difficult as it is to believe it is in fact a very simple and easy to understand principal that once reflected on and understood can change the way anger and resentment when experienced can affect you and those you love.
One of our most commonly used forms of self destruction is a little past time that humans delight all too often in playing; a little game called blame.  Think back to the last time you had an argument with somebody close to you, and dissect not only how the argument played out but how the argument began in the first place.  Explore what issues seemed at the time to be the cause and then dive deeper into the emotion and events that lead up to that argument; you may find that it was in fact your own insecurities that allowed another’s actions to cause your own negative and aggressive reaction.  Simply put, a mild comment made by another when married with our own doubts can manifest into a defensive accusation by us. 
Say for example there is a young married couple and as is often the case one or the other has put aside their goals or ambitions so that the other may in turn achieve theirs.  This is a common thing as all good relationships are built on give and take.  One is working full time, the other going to school and relying for the moment on their partner to cover the cost of their living expenses.  Perhaps the person who is paying the bills is not precisely happy in their line of work yet they have chosen to remain there as it is a stable source of income that provides a safety net of security for the family.  An opportunity comes up for the individual to leave their job and go into a field that is more to their liking but the amount of income will be less and if the chance is taken it may interfere financially with the comfort level within the home.   The person has a choice, take the job and with it the risk of not having a way to cover all the expenses in the home or stick out the old job a while longer until their partner is finished school and able to contribute more to the household.  It’s really not a hard call to make and most would stay in the old job in the interest of supporting the dreams of the one they love.  It is a sacrifice made knowing full well the costs of the sacrifice and it is very likely that there will be no ill will harboured by the person working because it is an act done out of love for another.  Both parties are aware of the sacrifice and both have no doubt had to consider the costs and emotions that come with the choice being made.  A few months go by, the student is still in school and the person who is working is finding it exceedingly more difficult to be happy with regards to the environment they work in.     As relationships go it is expected that when one is having a bad day, one will vent occasionally to the one person they trust the most, the person they share their life and their home with.  The problem lies in that the student is well aware of the position the other is in at work and may be harbouring some deep seeded (though unwarranted guilt) with regards to being responsible on some level for the others misery.  Sadly this can lead to a defensive attitude when it comes time for the other to unload their issues and concerns, and a benign comment not intended to be an attack can seem to the other person to be an accusation.  i.e.: the working partner is discussing their troubles at work and muses that they will be glad when the other is done school so they can explore other options and the student immediately fires back a comment about ‘if it is such a burden the I will just quit’...
Now where is the anger coming from? Certainly it is not due to an ungrateful attitude towards the person who has made the sacrifice, nor is it based on the fact that there is an attack being made on the student by the partner who is working.  For if both parties were working one or the other discussing an unhappy situation at work would not be uncomfortable for the other, in fact the outcome would be entirely different as it would be natural for one partner to feel protective of the other and would more than likely agree that ‘yes – your job sucks – maybe it is time to go’...
Because of the situation however it has suddenly become unsafe to discuss this topic and it would seem that the person who has done the giving must ‘suck it up’ and not mention the fact that they might for the moment not be particularly happy doing what they are doing.   Of course the argument can be made that the choice has already been made and the person who is working having made the choice should not be complaining about the choice made yet I argue that where is there harm in discussing the repercussions and costs of choices made.  Is it such a sin to make such statements?  To say ‘yes, I gave up something I wanted for the sake of somebody else and now I am paying the price’; why is it wrong to do so?  Perhaps it boils down simply to the fact that the receiver is not comfortable with the sacrifice made, and although that seems a far stretch to some it is not so hard to imagine if the person who is going to school is feeling guilty about the other person having to work in a place they do not like then they may become very defensive and irritable at the mention of the others unhappiness as they see it as a reflection of their own inability to provide for themselves.    
The truth is most of the time this defence mechanism is not needed, if you take the time to really consider the spirit with which something was done you can actually appreciate the sacrifice made or the gift given and do your best to give back as you are able.  This could be as simply a thing as hearing the other person out, letting them unload and allowing them to discuss and explain their own discomfort without assuming that they are doing so with the intent of making you feel as if you owe them something. 
It is an odd cycle this thing we call blame, for the person working can certainly NOT blame the person who is going to school for their unhappiness at work since it was the choice of the individual and made in a state of full awareness of the price that had to be paid.  Nor can the student blame the other for needing an outlet and an ear for their frustrations at work as it is part of our interactions with others that we naturally share our troubles with those we love.  So how do we stop such a destructive cycle?   By being aware of how it happens and what it is about our own emotions that allows us to feel as if others are attacking and accusing.  For in the game of life what it really boils down to at the end of the day is that you cannot control another’s actions but you can control your own reactions and if you allow your own fears and insecurities to get in the way of an open, understanding, supportive and communicative relationship then quite frankly you have nobody to blame but yourself.
Jean Victoria Norloch

The Beauty of a Shared Experience

I have a friend who lives on the other side of the world, a good man, simple and true.  I have not spoken to him in some time but he is often on my mind as I move forward in my life and my work.  There are few people out there, though admittedly the number grows every day who truly appreciate the basic simple things in life.  People who have a base understanding of the importance of family values, compassion and understanding are very precious to me and very much respected regardless of their age, race or background.  I would wish for him to forever be in a state of joy, so that he may continue to share that joy with others.   Being the pen that I am I feel I have no better way to honour the man that he is than to pass his message to me onto to you so that we may all remember the meaning of the times in which we now live.
He told me a leader walks ahead of the people expecting that when he turns around they will still be there behind him.  He chooses the road to walk and shows others where to step.
He told me a good leader walks among the people and talks with them so that they may choose their road together.  They walk side by side so that if a step is taken that causes them to stumble they may hold each other up.
He told me a great leader walks behind the people, nodding silently to himself in quiet satisfaction and joy as they choose the road they wish to take.  If they stumble and fall he is always there to help them get back on their feet.
He is wise, gentle and kind and the world will likely never know his name.  Yet to the family and friends who know, love and respect him, he will forever in their hearts be a great leader.  Why?  Not because he has a position of power, status or wealth.  He does not; he manages a restaurant in Manila, and works 12 hrs shifts before travelling two hours by bus so he may spend time with his family.  What makes him so special is that he understands that to lead sometimes means to stay behind.
How many different leaders does our world have?  Spiritual, religious, political and social; it seems there are literally thousands around the globe who stand ready to show us the way.  Which leads us to ask the question; who is it that we should choose to follow.
We were warned to beware of false prophets; warned that a time would come when only the whispers of our heart could be trusted to be our guides.
In the last few years the number of people claiming to be messengers has grown by an alarming rate, something that may cause concern for those who are leery of being led astray.  Yet it cannot be denied that the messages of peace and love seem pure, and much of what is now being taught is quite logical.  It stands to reason that if we wish to survive and move forward in our evolution that we must make peace with ourselves and the world in which we live.  It makes perfect sense that we must learn to love ourselves, our world and each other; to know ourselves, our world and each other.
If you really think about it, the most common sense teachings of our time are also the most commonly taught.  We are all one – connected – united – what you do to others you also do to yourself – what you do to our world you in turn do to you...
Still we were warned and many may be wondering where the false prophets are and how one can tell if they are false.  I wish I could give you that answer but I am not you, I do not see through your eyes and even though I am a part of the world of which you are also a part it is not for me to choose your path.
So if each person’s journey is their own why now more than ever does there seem to be so many different guides.  Why now more than ever does there seem to be some many teachers and lessons available for others to learn.
I imagine it is merely so that we may choose what in the end works for us.
Perhaps if our perceptions of those who have come before could be altered just a little we may begin to view them more as friends and not as somebody that should be raised above us.  Many of them have made it clear they are no different really from us, in no way more special than us and not so long ago probably just as lost and confused as us. 
That my friends is where the magic in the message is.  They have not come to tell us how to make our lives better or even so much that we should.  They have only come to show us how they improved their own lives so that we will know when we choose to do so that we can.
It would seem the days of complex rules and regulations are coming to an end.  The do’s and don’ts of yesterday are no longer seem to be something  people wish to concern themselves with.  There is a freer, more creative way of looking at our world and each other; judgements and condemnation are no longer welcome.  Instead of focussing on our faults we are now spending time recreating ourselves and our world.  Things are being flipped around, altered, the artists and musicians, the outcasts of yesterday are now stepping forward and using their talents and skill to help those in need.  Having always lived out of the box, they have long ago forgotten the box is there and are now using the energies they have always used to create entertainment for the masses to co-create and new world for the masses.   Thought and feeling are merging and becoming one and balance is being restored.
Through the shared experiences of others that reassures us that we are not alone and the creative force of those who have set out before us in the interest of freedom of expression we are leaping into a brave new world.  Through the open hearted discussion of all our various beliefs and ideals and the common interest of sharing our gifts and visions we open the magical portal to our future.  Through our new found acceptance of ourselves and each other our new world begins to emerge, lives transform; love and laughter are again reborn,  All because we stopped saying this is where you should go and started just going, then sharing with others where we have been.
So we come to time when leaders no longer walk ahead of us and into a time when through the sharing of experiences they walk among us.  We have come to a time when teachers no longer tell us what we should learn, but encourage us to remember that which we already know.  We have come to a time when the guides no longer point the way but instead wait patiently on us as we choose the direction we wish to walk.
We have come to a time when the guide may be led down a new path, where the teacher realizes that there is much yet to be learned from the student and the leaders fall to the back of the line so that none may be left behind.
Jean Victoria Norloch

The Balance...

Cry if you feel like crying – that was her advice – Write the truth about your feelings even if they are not filled with light, you don’t have to share them but who is to say it will not help others for them to know that they are not alone.
Smart lady I am thinking and once again blessed I am to have her in my life.  Of course she is not the only one these days who seems to be sharing this wisdom and so perhaps it is in my best interests to stop and listen to the meaning behind the words.  Another friend, who spent an afternoon doing his part at advancing my healing shared with me his observations and in the sharing encouraged me also to take a deeper look at my own.   I mentioned in another blog the importance of acknowledging that which upsets us.  As I spoke to my friend and told him my story I began to get angry, but it wasn’t long before the anger turned to tears and as the tears flowed he offered gentle words.
“You see now don’t you, that behind all your anger there is a deep underlying sorrow; a sadness that needs to be addressed and dealt with if you are going to find your way past this place in which you are stuck.”
We discussed the fact that often there are a multitude of blogs and wirings focussing on light and love but seldom do we see an honest representation of human emotions.  We wondered who it is benefitting to pretend that we are not creatures of feeling, who it is helping to pretend that life is always full of light.  Another piece of advice then came to mind that I think I had misunderstood until now.  Another much respected friend had offered a help full hint with regards to my troubles,  something I think perhaps now as I dive deeper into the why of where I currently am is an important lesson for us all and one that makes a great deal of sense.  He had told me not to give into my emotions, not to let them overcome me or control me.  At the time I took it as a warning to not accept anger, hate, fear as part of my world; I took it as instruction to work at forcing them out of my life.  Love he said when I asked is not an emotion; it is a state of mind so it is acceptable to live in love; not so he said with hate, fear or sorrow.
When I look back now however and combine his words with the advice of others I have grown to respect and trust I realize that shutting these things out entirely can be extremely dangerous to our advancement spiritually.  As many of us accept that we are a marriage, a joining of the physical and the spiritual it does us a great injustice to ignore that within us that is human.  Often we hear how important it is to strive for a state of peaceful acceptance of all things, and this I do not deny is what we are all working towards yet to get there we must understand a few things about ourselves that are not so often discussed openly.  As much as forgiveness of self and forgiveness of others is extremely important it does not do to beat ourselves up when we are not able to reach or live in that perfect state of calm all the time.  I think that too often we push aside our true feelings about a situation due to our desire to live in a state of harmony, we ignore the things that hurt us and we forget that in our human state it is quite normal to feel pain or fear.  Yes of course there will be times when all is aligned as it should be and we will feel so powerful and at peace that nothing can harm us yet what happens when we back track? What happens when we lose that feeling and come crashing back to the reality that for the moment we still live in the world in which we live and in that world there is still suffering and loss?  It can be a crushing blow if we have somewhere along the way convinced ourselves that it is not longer acceptable for us to be affected by the things that happen to us or in our world.  That is where the danger comes in; a danger at not accepting that sometimes we are affected and that we must be aware of who and why we were affected in order that we might learn from the experience.
You can choose to ignore your feelings but in doing so a few things may happen.  First they may become buried so completely that you may not be aware that they are affecting you spiritually or physically.  Once buried you might have a bit of trouble digging them back out once you get to the point where they have affected you so much that they are damaging your ability to move forward. Once you finally manage to dig them out (and you will have to actively search for them, face them and force them to once again come to the surface) you will have to deal with them; which means you are no further ahead than you were when you first began to feel them.  Second, you may actually begin to act on those feelings but being as they are buried deeply you may not be aware of what you are doing.   This too may slow or stop the healing process, it may even in fact set you to moving backwards from where you are, as if you are acting on feelings that you are not prepared or willing to accept as your own you may inadvertently take an action that you will in the future find yourself regretting.  It becomes another vicious cycle that needs be both addressed and stopped; difficult to do if you are unaware that it is happening.  Your feelings then if ignored come to have a power over you, as they direct your actions and reactions without you being consciously aware; you no longer give yourself the option of having a choice, and as choice is the basis of all that we do and are when you take away your ability to choose, you take away your ability to live as you were meant to live. 
I don’t believe for one minute that it is in any way healthy to ignore our feelings or to pretend that they do not affect us.  It is living a lie and though the argument has been made by many that it is also not healthy to allow the actions of others to control or direct our emotions and well being; let’s face it, here in this life, in this reality we are human and as humans we feel a fantastical range of emotions. It is in fact one of the beautiful things about being human, this ability to feel.  All of this boils down to one little thing that we often do not discuss or explore; the reason that we are so set on ignoring the emotions that are such an integral part of being human in the first place; fear.  Is it perhaps that we fear them? Do we think that if we accept them as they are that we may lose control of who we are?  Is it that we think that it is a step towards perfection on a spiritual level for us not to feel?  Even in the bible it is written that Jesus himself felt fear and doubt, and He is held by many in their hearts to be the purest example of human perfection that ever lived.  If He felt fear why then are we also not allowed to feel fear? 
The power that emotions hold over us is not in the recognition or acceptance of them as part of our life, it is in our choosing to ignore them and push them away.  Accepting them allows us the power to choose to act on them, or to not act on them; ignoring them as I explained takes that power away.  Just because somebody hurts you does not mean you have to act out of anger towards that person, it does not mean you have to seek out revenge or take action that may in turn hurt the individual that first hurt you.  You have that choice, yet choosing not to act on your anger does not mean that you have to ignore the fact that you are angry.  If you are – you are – and you have every right to be...
Fear in all shapes and forms stop us in our tracks, prevents us from following our dreams, living true to our nature and existing in a state of honesty.  Fear of accepting and embracing our human emotions is no different and in the end may be more dangerous to our state of wellbeing than any other fear; to fear our emotions is to fear ourselves.  To fear ourselves is a sure fire step onto the path of self destruction, a path that none of us wish to walk...
In all our teachings about being true to our purpose, all our studying about being true to our hearts, all the work being done now to encourage others to accept who and what they are we sometimes are so focussed on telling others how beautiful they are, how filled with light they are, how much of a blessing to our world they are we forget sometimes to tell them that we mean exactly as they are not as they interpret us to wish them to be...
So my friends in order to honour the part of us that is human, the part of us that brings balance to that part of us that is spirit; I am passing on some words of wisdom...
If today you are sad, even if you don’t know why, if today you find that tears seem to come unwanted or even unwarranted to your eyes, if my friend you feel today as if you want to cry - go ahead, cry... trust me in this world of humans who feel  - you are not alone.
Jean Victoria Norloch

Pain sucks – yes that’s right. I said it – it sucks...

Oh sure I can hear you now... but where’s the light?  She always writes to inspire... Pretty words, stories of incredible people who survive against all odds... be good to your fellow man – and above all don’t forget to be grateful...
Confused aren’t you... you know I’m laughing right. 
Ask me a week ago if I was feeling blessed and I would have told you to go suck on a lemon and feel blessed about that.  Ask me now and well I say absolutely but before I get into what I feeling blessed about let me explain one little thing... I do not think that no matter how sweet and caring – no matter how compassionate – empathetic – loving a person is that if they are subjected to long term ongoing intense pain they will maintain a sweet candy coated disposition.  That’s why I’m wiring.  I might be getting better (and we will get into my illness later as well) but there are countless people out there struggling with the same thing every hour of every day and how can others possibly understand their agony and anger if nobody will talk openly and honestly about the effects of it. 
Now I am not talking about (oh my belly hurts kind of pain) nor am I talking about a irritating headache that goes away in a few hours – or the aches that come with having the flu – no I am talking about the mind numbing, wish I could curl up in a corner and die, can’t walk – talk – sit – lie down – breathe – wish I was back in labour kind of pain.  As a side note that is saying allot (ladies with babies I did 60 hrs of hard labour with no drugs for the first two days – last week I really wished I could suffer through that again instead).  As to the why of the pain – well not that it matters but apparently I have some serious issues with my muscles and my spine – enough that the doctor has decided that at the age of 35 that I can no longer work due to a  few little problems that have come up.  Though I thought that my herniated disks between my shoulder blades were gone – according to the doctor – no such luck – sorry lady those you are stuck with for life.  He had more good news too, the muscles not liking the fact that I have been working a very physically demanding job with a damaged spine thought they would help me out by over compensating for my weak back by tightening up – barring that fact that tight muscles hurt like hell – they had an odd affect on my spine and the natural curve that used to be there – that is supposed to be there - is gone – bones are touching bones and pinching things they should not pinch and oh by the way – sorry lady we can’t fix that either...
Well then what the hell are the doctors for...?
Oh they can give you drugs – yup that they can do – and they can sign papers that you can then bring to the government and they cut you a small check every month – give you a drug card and do their part at trying to keep you semi  fed and clothed while the doctors keep you stoned.
Does not seem to be the prettiest of pictures so far does it...
Where is the light?
Well the light comes in when your friend gives you enough money to buy a laptop self so that you can lie in bed and write...
The light comes in when your family and friends don’t get mad at your moods swings, when they forgive you for not responding to emails, and for generally forgetting that anything other than the pain exists in your world.
The light comes when our roommate works all day then comes home and cooks you dinner – or leaves extra already prepared food in the fridge so that you have food to eat while she is away.
The light comes when you are surrounded by healers and energy workers who can assist the doctors in their efforts to heal your troubles by healing your spirit.
The light comes when people from every race color creed and belief are praying for you because for a long time you have prayed and cared about them – that my friends is the light...
The light comes when you the reader pass this on – in every way you can to everybody you can because the light also comes in me being able to put my thoughts about this little experience on paper so that the family and friends of others out there who suffer from chronic pain may come to understand how it affects the individual.
First off – it scares the hell out of you – because you know there is something wrong – terribly wrong with your body and you usually do not have an answer as to what it is.  Not right away anyways – there will be tests and medications – it is a trial and error process and that is only if you are lucky enough to get the right doctor.  If not you get pills shoved at you and you are expected not to push for a diagnosis – just take the pills and feel the false euphoria they give you.  Don’t give into that – not for one little second – if you hurt – you push – and when they finally tell you they have figured out what is wrong you keep pushing – you need it fixed – not in a year – not in a month – now – right now and you are not going to take no for an answer....
So you are scared and it hurts – now what?  I am guessing after a few weeks if not days of hurting you are going to get tired – very very tired – you see if you hurt your body can’t rest and the less rest you get the more it hurts.   It’s a vicious cycle – one that needs to be broken because the more sleep you lose the less will you have to fight this.  You will get cranky, than angry – sometimes you will cry and you won’t know why except to say that you are perhaps really tired of being in pain.  Really tired of nobody understanding... the long and the short of it is you are really tired...
Exhaustion sets in and whatever small ounce of hope you held in your heart for ever getting better begins to fade... Now you are at the point where the drugs are looking really good – and anything else you can find that will make the pain seem less.  Alcohol works but trust me after watching my mother drink and pill herself to death I do not recommend mixing the two – it is a deadly combo...
Now the good news is – take the meds – they will help for now and it’s ok to get help.  Once you are feeling better, a little lighter – once you have had some sleep your little ounce of hope will begin to grow and suddenly there will be options available for you.  In fact they were always there you just were so wrapped up in the pain – lost in it in fact that you forgot that there are always options.  Our physical wellbeing is often a direct result of our spiritual wellbeing, so while the doctors are working their miracles with pills and therapy you will be researching ways to heal yourself on a spiritual level.  In fact it really is as easy as asking the heavens for help – because once you ask it is given and there will be people come into  your life that will offer their time and their energy – offer themselves to help your cause – all you need do is believe.  Problem is that while you are locked into a prison of pain it is a little hard to believe, that I understand. Others though – they may not imderstamd – so I offer this advice as well – be honest with them – tell them you are scared – tell them you feel alone – cut off – helpless – tell them what you are going through and DO NOT think you have to do this ALONE...
If you have a family member who is in chronic pain – let them know – they are NOT ALONE – tell them you are there – that though you may not understand you will try if they will let you... Be there and I know that as you watch them suffer you too may feel helpless – I watched my mom for years with no clue how to help – she suffered from fibromyalgia – osteoporosis – osteoarthritis and that was 20 years ago when the only way they knew how to help was to give the patient narcotics.  Narcotics do not solve the problem – nor do they take the pain away completely and over time you need more and more because you build up immunity to them.  They are addictive and they kill your liver, your kidneys your heart and your lungs... so where does one go from there?  I could not help her – nor did I understand why she was so angry – I had never felt what she was feeling – not until now and so I could not possibly understand.  Still though you may not be able to take your loved ones pain away you can find ways to help them.  Being there for one, listening and offering a shoulder to cry on when it becomes too much to bare.  That is just a start, help them explore alternative answers, help them understand that if they really truly wish to get better they have to help heal themselves.  They have to not give up and you have to not give up on them.  That is vitally important because you see they will want to give up – they will want to give in – they will want to hide and cut themselves off from the world because the world they once knew no longer makes sense.  They can’t do the things they love to do, they can’t find joy in the things that used to make them smile and laughter, our most important gift will be illusive for a time... Be patient – and if you are the patient be patient – with yourself – go easy on yourself – understand that yes for now you have limits – yes for now there are things you cannot do but there are other things that you can do – figure out what they are and do them – if you want to take a break – take it – don’t push yourself and don’t feel guilty for not being able to do the things you used to do – that will not help you – guilt kills.  Life might be different for you now – and things may look a little scary but there are things you can do to help yourself... 
Gratitude they say heals – so make a list of the things in your life that you are grateful for.   Make a list of the people in your life you are thankful for and keep that list with you.  Cherish it – love it because it is your reminder that there is a reason for you to survive this.  It is a reminder that you are cared for and loved and that you are important to others and for that reason you will find a way to pull through this.
It s sounds simple – it is not simple – not one little bit...
Chronic pain does not allow it to be simple – it is a struggle – every minute – every hour of every day – it is a struggle ... Just please, please do not give up.  
I hurt – every day – I wake up and it hurts – I go through my day no matter what that day holds and it hurts – I go to bed and it hurts.  I live on a couch, with a heating pad, and my computer and a TV – my books – and that for the moment is life... But I am determined that it will not always be that way...
I figure the powers that be gave me a pen for a reason, so that as I work through this I can write about it and pass on what I learn as I go to others so they may work through it too.  That makes it not hurt so much.
Yes as I said pain sucks – but what would suck more is giving into it – giving up...
Do I feel blessed – yes I do because as much as it sucks at least I can let it go by writing about it and sharing my story to help others.  Suddenly my pain has a purpose and it starts not to suck so much but maybe instead is something else to be thankful for...
Jean Victoria Norloch

It begins and ends in silence...

Much like the miraculous cycle we call life a Deva Premal and Miten with Manose concert is born, comes to life, grows, expands then slowly fades into the darkness of night.  So it is from a place of feeling I write as to do anything else would not fairly honour the love with which they offer their gift of music.
Of course, I use the term music lightly since it seems to me that the melodious mixture of rhythm and beat transcends that which is merely heard; this song, this beautiful soulful offering is one that must be felt.
Blessed are those who get the chance to hear them play, blessed more so are those who meet them.  Peaceful, balanced, grounded and open...  Those words might do them justice if not for the one word that supersedes all the other words that come to mind.  It is the one word that describes the feeling of being in the room with them.  It is the one word that describes what one senses when you sit down with them to talk. It is the word that describes their journey, their relationship with each other and those who they allow into their lives.  One precious word – LOVE...
The best part about having the chance to meet them in person is in the knowing that the description above may make them smile, they may accept my words with a slight bowing of their heads and a whispered Namaste yet adoration is not their hearts desire.   Interaction with the crowd is what I felt drives their energy when performing on stage.  I believe they embrace the chance to blend their energy for a time through the sharing of their gift with the energies of those who would otherwise be strangers. 
It is the creation that stirs the soul within, the dream of unity that empowers the work and the humble spirit of the connected messenger that allows for the purest delivery of their message of love. 
In honour of that same spirit it is fitting that as serious as both the music and the message are the joy with which they are both delivered lightens the burdens of those who would wish in their hearts to create a better more peaceful world.  There is a light hearted humour, thanks to Miten a spattering of comedic relief not to be out down by Manose who offers an easy banter with his fellow artists.   Combined with the gentle motherly nature of Deva these elements create a space of inner stillness.   Their approach in performing is simple and honest and it is obvious to all watching that they are very much in love with each other and their art. 
They encourage the crowd’s interaction both with themselves and each other throughout their performance.  There is an intense energy that is built up as the ones sitting in the place of the audience join in and become performers.  That is the magic moment, the moment of now when an entire theatre full of strangers stands together and sings as one.  Accompanied by the remarkably moving flutes of Manose the songs take the crowd to a new heights; peace for the moment seems attainable, in fact to sit and look into the eyes of Manose as he plays means that peace seems inevitable...
One voice, one message and one heart; that is what one feels upon leaving a Deva Premal and Miten with Manose concert and how I think after meeting them that they would all wish us to feel long after the music stops.
Jean Victoria Norloch

My tribute to Mr Woodyard....

Once upon a time there lived a man.  He was a simple soul, never asked for much and always gave more than he got.  He played a pretty mean guitar, sang a soulful song and along the way he touched the lives and hearts of thousands.
He wasn’t famous, he wasn’t rich, you won’t see his name in lights yet his life shone a bright light into the lives of so many others.
I’m sitting here on my deck tonight writing to you so that his memory will be kept alive.  You see, I received word yesterday that he has passed on and was not able to put pen to paper until today.  The shock was just too great.
I spent 5 years of my life under the watchful eye of this caring individual.  5yrs protected and sheltered by him from the harsh realities that were my teenage years.  Long talks behind closed doors brought comfort in times of need. Always encouraging with never a harsh word he often took more time then he had to dry my tears.
There were a lot of those growing up and many a time when growing up seemed so much more difficult than giving up.  He never did, give up on me that is and regardless of how much trouble I caused him, he never walked away.  I was a pain; rebellious, self centered, thinking that I had all the answers, yet by my side he remained.  He had my back and life at home became too much to bear he would quietly convince me to stick it out just a little longer.  He always said some day I would understand, I now I think maybe I do. 
He never judged or condemned me, only tried desperately to understand.  He got through, when nobody else could reach me.  He burrowed a small spot into my heart and there he remains one of the biggest influences of my youth.
Don’t quit – don’t give up – you are better than this – take care of you – follow your heart – follow your dreams – be you – and be happy while you are doing it...
That was his advice and though I did not always listen then, I have remembered it often as I grew.  Life can be hard but love is free and that is what his love meant to me; the freedom to be the best me I could be.  I’m still working on it, his guidance and strength still in my heart.  I was looking forward to the day I could come to him and say thank-you; show him what I’d become.  I’ll never get the chance but I know he’s watching and I’ll keep working hard to honour his memory and all that he stood for.
I am only one person, only one life touched with only one part of the great legacy that was his life’s work.
Imagine what kind of impact he made on the hundreds of students that walked the halls of our small school.
Who was this man?
He was our high school vice-principal and he is one of the reasons I have made it this far.
Mr Woodyard this is my way of saying thank-you.  To all of you out there reading this, please remember his name; let it be a reminder to us all that a man does not have to be a great man to make a difference but he does have to make a difference to be a great man.
Jean Victoria Norloch