Category Archives: Life Inspiration

Betty Boop in the Andes

Twenty-plus years of traveling and living abroad have taught me that the world is full of surprises, and it’s the incongruous bits you discover in unexpected corners of it that are the real travel treasures.

Yesterday I was privileged to do a tour of a small organic farm high in the Andes Mountains, run by an Ecuadorian lady farmer named Fanny. She was introduced as the owner of the establishment, which in a typically machismo society was my first surprise of the day.

The tour of gardens and animals was very interesting, but upon entering the front hall of Fanny’s humbly charming house, the tour took on an intriguing twist. There I was collectively greeted by largish renditions of Mary, Mother of Jesus, (not at all surprising in a predominantly Catholic country), Marilyn Monroe, and Betty Boop.

Betty is the proud main feature of Fanny’s front vestibule, positioned notably front and center above a doorway to the Van Gogh yellow living room. Mary and Marilyn observe Betty from a nearby side wall, and two corners display other little treasures that further speak of Fanny’s love of art and creativity. She likely doesn’t have time for her own, though, with a young babe in arms and a busy farm to run. Or perhaps that’s not true. It seems to me that being that connected to nature and growing food is an art form unto itself.

In any case, the juxtaposition of these three female icons immediately set my mind to whirring. I could only postulate what the connection between them might be for Fanny. Is there one? The permutations of possible meaning in a grouping of Mary, Marilyn, and Betty are practically infinite. I do know that the unexpected puzzle of this trio in a rural Andean farmhouse made it a particularly memorable visit for me.

I am also pretty sure of this: All of the data points I took away from this 4-hour excursion suggest that Fanny is not only a strong woman and capable farmer of the Andes, she is also a dreamer. I’d love to have a 1:1 conversation with Fanny over a spicy cup of horchata tea some time, and learn more about the woman behind this little corner of the world.


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© Susan L Hart 2022

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Yesterday’s post on Hart for Humanity: A Meeting Place of Peace

Eduardo & the Green Obsidian

Meeting Eduardo was a delightful surprise. So, for that matter, was the green obsidian.

On a bright summer afternoon, I walked down an El Centro street just after a lunch with my friend Barbara. In that moment I was in a very good mood. The city streets were already quiet by then, as many shops had closed at 1 pm. Sunday starts on Saturday in Ecuador!

I casually noticed a young man sitting on a stoop as I passed him. He appeared to be one of the transient travelers often seen on the downtown streets, selling their handmade jewelry to make travel money. About four paces past him, I was stopped in my tracks. A voice in my head said clearly, “You MUST go back. This young man needs your help.”

I continued to pause and I listened. The direction was repeated. I have learned not to ignore my intuitions, so…

I about-faced and walked back. He looked up from his work and smiled warmly. Rather than displaying his jewelry on a ground cloth, he had devised an upright stand so it could be viewed at eye level. Aside from his beautiful handmade necklaces and bracelets, he was also reselling some cheap trinkets. The first thing to catch my eye was a small, silvery Eiffel Tower.

Thought to self, “Ah yes. Paris. Some day…”  But I knew buying a $2 charm was not going to make Eduardo’s day a whole lot better.

I continued to look. Many of his necklaces featured turquoise, but as much as it is my favorite stone, nothing really grabbed me. Suddenly Eduardo handed me a necklace from the other side of the stand, and the moment my eyes fell on it, I knew it was meant for me. Sleek and smooth, largish and tear-drop shaped, the stone set in the necklace was a dark, lustrous opaque green. Held up to the light, I could see faint rainbow colors. There was a magic to it.

I told him in Spanish it was the piece I wanted. I did not dicker on the price in this case. I was happy enough with what he quoted, and, I had a deep sense that Eduardo badly needed the money. I expressed my delight at the beauty of the stone. He seemed pleased. He told me it was obsidiana (Spanish for obsidian), and that it was very special to the Mayan people.

Eduardo had woven the obsidian into a thread neckband of olive green and black. He invited me to sit beside him so he could fit the length to me and add the clasp. But when he took out his lighter to burn the thread ends (as I had just seen him doing on a bracelet as I walked up), the flame failed to ignite. At that exact moment, Eduardo reached his completely broke point. He embarassedly asked to borrow a dollar so he could purchase a new lighter.

I said sure. He procured one from the store next door, then sat beside me again. I asked his name and where he was from. Peru. He had only been in Ecuador for a couple of weeks. We chatted happily while he worked, me in my broken Spanish and he in his imperfect English. It didn’t matter about the gaps. We understood each other in all the ways that were important.

As Eduardo was making the final fitting, a young couple walked up and the woman exclaimed how beautiful the necklace looked. It was me! I paid Eduardo the money, and we cheek kissed in the Spanish way before I departed.

He looked at me. “Esta fue una reunión de corazones, si Susanna?”

I smiled. “Yes Eduardo. It was indeed a true meeting of hearts.” I hugged him, then proceeded on my way.

As it turned out, this meeting was not just about Eduardo’s predicament. I also had been working through a rough period in my life. When I later researched it, I discovered that green obsidian is a Gaia Stone and is sometimes called “The Soul of the Earth”. It is associated with the heart chakra and is said to promote loving relationships between people. Green obsidian is therefore held very sacred by the Mayan people.

Later I had the stone mounted on a silver wire so I could wear it more often. Because of the special way it came to me, the green obsidian represents my love for humanity. When I wear it, I feel connected to the All and loved in return.

It magically found me at just the right time, and the messenger was Eduardo.


Eduardo & the Green Obsidian © Susan L Hart 2017

HartForHumanity3b

My post on Hart for Humanity yesterday: Humanity Standing at a Crossroads

Our Natural Life Rhythms

Our cat, who likes to arise around 5 a.m. every day, reminds everyone in our household that there are Earth rhythms. I’ve come to the conclusion that he hears the first bird’s chirp way before we do. The remarkable thing is, he and the birds are accurate within minutes of the hour, every single day! They are very tuned into the Earth’s daily cycles.

With eyes half open, sun soon to rise behind me, moon saying hello (and soon goodbye) over yon rooftop, I let him out to survey his garden territory. It gives me pause to think, how many of life’s natural rhythms are we missing out on, every single day, as we run around like mad people being slaves to the clock?

Yes, I hear your retort already… We need clocks to get to our jobs, keep our lives organized, get things done. Indeed. But the next point I will make is, when we’re not tending to those essential tasks that need doing, how many precious “real life” moments are being stolen by the technology that lives at the end of our wrists? That technology is also stealing our health.

Did you know? The Earth’s “heartbeat” (called the Schumann Resonance) is an electromagnetic wave that circles her circumference, and it is closely connected to (and communicates with) our brains.

This from a Gizmodo post, The Earth has a heartbeat we can see from space:

“The wavelength is the circumference of the earth (or twice the circumference, or three times, or four, and so on). This means that the troughs of these waves will always line up, as will the crests. When crests combine, they get bigger. And with lightning hitting the earth over four million times a day, these waves keep getting the boosts they need. The waves don’t sweep across the surface of the earth. Instead they’re like standing waves, that just pulse at their troughs and crests – a resonant heartbeat.”

The Schumann Resonance (the base atmospheric electromagnetic resonant frequency is 7.83 Hz) is closely in sync with our Alpha brain waves (8 to 12 Hz). Alpha waves “are dominant during quietly flowing thoughts, and in some meditative states. Alpha is ‘the power of now’, being here, in the present. Alpha is the resting state for the brain. Alpha waves aid overall mental coordination, calmness, alertness, mind/body integration and learning.” (From What are Brainwaves? – Brainworks, Train Your Mind.)

The scientific study of the full effects of interference with the Shchumann Resonance ELF waves on our well-being is still in its infancy. But, studies to date suggest that when human vibration is out of sync with the Earth’s resonant heartbeat, we are not in a prime state of health. There are many articles outlining the interference and possible detrimental effects played by our synthetic technologies.

There are also theories that staying in alignment could play an important part in the future expansion of our collective human consciousness. The heartbeat of the Earth is connected to us in ways that are only starting to be understood.

Do you notice how you feel when you spend too much time around TV, computers, cell phones, etc? (They are sucking the life force out of us!) Comparatively, the next time you’re out in nature, really tune in to how the images, colors, and sounds are affecting your mind and body.

Our cat would tell you, listen to the Earth’s heartbeat. Nature is communicating with you, so get to know and feel her language. Whether you realize it or not, she is calling you back to your organic essence.


© Susan L Hart 2020

HartForHumanity3b

Our Divine Nature

When we really tune into nature, we hook into the divine energy (whatever we each believe that to be) that breathes in all living things. We feel connected. Our souls transcend the mundane and we remember our infinite essence.

The divine is evident in the tiny dragonfly, but sometimes it takes a mighty mountain to awaken our souls. When we gaze upward at that magnificent rock face, we feel small and big, all at the same time.

The sublime grandeur within and without is undeniable. If such a thing exists in the world, then surely anything must be possible. And yes, it is.

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”  (Henry David Thoreau)


“There is a pleasure in the pathless woods,
There is a rapture on the lonely shore,
There is society, where none intrudes,
By the deep Sea, and music in its roar:
I love not Man the less, but Nature more,
From these our interviews, in which I steal
From all I may be, or have been before,
To mingle with the Universe, and feel
What I can ne’er express, yet cannot all conceal.”

Lord Byron, from Childe Harold’s Pilgrimage


The indigenous peoples of the world believe that Nature is not only our provider, but she is also our teacher.

What has been your most profound experience with Nature? What has been the most important lesson Nature has taught you?  Please comment.


Today’s post on Hart for Humanity: Don’t give us hope. (We deserve more!)

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Message in a Bottle

Chisel not my name
onto elegant stone,
so you that I love
might become slave
to a time and place
that no longer holds
my soul, to which you
could become tied,
lost in sorrow and
life’s limitations.

Rather, joyfully cast
my dust to the wind, so
I may dance on the breeze,
and one day as the leaves
rustle gently overhead,
you will feel me there,
riding a ray of sunshine
kissing your face, and
I’ll whisper in your ear,
“Remember to live free.”


Message in a Bottle © Susan L Hart 2022

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My recent post on Hart for Humanity: The Connectedness of it All

Feel the Surging Wave

A spiritual revolution brews in the heart of humanity. This surging wave is moving around the world. Can you feel it? We have entered a time of deep questioning. Some of it isn’t pretty, so we may be inclined to turn our eyes away. But wait! Isn’t that what we’ve been doing for too long now? Trusting that the “formula for life” is the only way to do it or the best we can hope for? Trusting the message that we shouldn’t trust in ourselves?

Feel that surging wave that connects you to humanity. Hear its song, while at the same time listening to your own head, heart, and gut. There has never been a more important time to trust in your own wisdom and speak your truth. When you do, you become a light for the world.

You are not meant for crawling, so don’t. You have wings. Learn to use them and fly.” (Rumi)


Wholly

Living life wholly, fully, completely,
is a process of learning,
with full awareness
and reverently,
for life IS holy –
I don’t mean religiously,
but yes, spiritually,
and respectfully
of all of Life,
not sacrificially
of yourself,
your own soul,
your learning,
but cooperatively
with humanity,
compassionately,
understandingly,
gracefully,
lovingly,
becoming
wholly
One.


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Recent related post on Hart for Humanity: The Connectedness of it All

Agape, Love for Humanity

Love is the force that draws us inexorably together, the glue that will not allow us to give up on each other. It is our greatest challenge and biggest source of miracles. Infinite love already exists in everything that is alive, including you and me. Our love lessons are about removing the obstacles to love. They teach us out how to access, express, and live it. That is, if we choose to learn.

This can sometimes feel difficult in a world that is expressing so much dissension and “un-love”, but each of us is a potential key to healing humanity. Fear, anger, and prejudice – we employ a myriad of padlocks to hold our love hostage. Every experience around love is an opportunity for self-examination, and for us to grow.

Do you realize? Your love gives you immense personal power to change the world. The mass media news is too often rife with division, hate, and fear. Some people just wait and hope for an external power or institution to cure the big problems of the world, because the events feel too big and out of their control. They will have a very long wait.

Consider that perhaps the high tension in the world right now is a challenge to each of us to work on unlocking our love. Together we could collectively unleash a world of love that has never been seen before.

If we don’t care enough to personally get in the game, the world we desire will slip through our fingers like quicksand. It begins with each of us, with one random act of kindness, a single word of compassion, a step upward on the stairway of understanding.

It’s one bit of love at a time. It ripples outward and builds. It comes from you, and me, and anyone else who chooses to participate, instead of just complaining about how bad things are. It’s what the ancient Greeks called “agape”, a selfless love for humanity, and the world sorely needs more of it.

Adopt a global consciousness. Choose to be a living example of love, compassion, and understanding. Work to bridge the divides you encounter. As Gandhi said, “Be the change you want to see in the world.”

That which you give to the world, you ultimately give to yourself.


This post is an excerpt from one of my recent Hart for Humanity posts. I send them out 2X per week by email from my Hart for Humanity account on Substack. If you’d like to receive the full posts in your inbox, please sign up. It’s quick and easy!


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