Update

Watch this oil painting “Painting Colors” come to life in 1 minute (time lapse)

I’ll be working on new projects this week. These projects require that I be in high energy, full of light and positivity, and confident in what I’m sharing. This can be hard to live up to when I’m feeling worn, discouraged, demoralized, and doubtful about the future. Any vocation is harmed when we don’t put our full and best selves into it. Our energy goes beyond careers or projects and into our homes and relationships as well. A big part of our future success, fruitfulness, prosperity, and influence for inspiring others requires that we live a life of healthy balance.

A great deal of my painting schedule is the time that I spend when I’m not painting. My choices affect who I am, and if I can be the person I need to be to produce the kind of work that I’m meant to share. Or, if I’m so consumed with my small life that I can’t create beyond my own needs and inner circle. And sometimes that’s all that’s expected of us: there are times when we must prioritize ourselves and our families. No one has regrets about work on their death bed. It’s the people we love and the dreams we didn’t act on that really matter, those are the things we may regret.

We all have a role in the bigger picture beyond what we can see; and our personal dreams may be important to the age we’re living in. Work must be a vocation; everything should have meaning. I’ve worked many other types of jobs, and I felt the same about those jobs as I do about being an entrepreneur, even when I hated those jobs. It’s something my dad used to say: “if it’s worth doing, it’s worth doing right.” He was pushing for integrity and excellence, but I’d like to think about this as something more. Whatever we’re given to do, if we don’t do it well, it is not worth doing at all, as it wastes our life’s energy and brings our spirits into a rut that can be hard to come out of. 

Whether seemingly trivial projects or something more meaningful, everything we share becomes a part of something bigger. When we contribute goodwill, we add to the collective positive energy that helps humanity. When we fail to contribute, or when we contribute negative, fearful, and unemphatic work or actions, we hurt humanity. Our lives are bigger than ourselves; we must strengthen who we are so that we can fulfill the purpose for why we are here.

So, while it doesn’t seem related to my goals as an artist, when I spend time gardening and feeding the wild birds, I am putting work into my spiritual self, which is a big part of whether or not I succeed in my vocation. When in healthy balance and feeling strong, we can better handle the demands on our time, whether it is home related or work related- or handling unexpected crises events. 

After a flurry of other things to focus on and manage, I’m ready to re-focus on the painting schedule. One of the paintings on the schedule is a long term project, the other is a short term one that I’ll likely share with you by the end of the week. These will put me two more oil paintings toward my lifetime goal of 1k finished paintings. I’m also working on the next show, the 2021 Holiday Show (another variety show featuring live oil painting, but also singing and dancing). 

My goals are to be joyful, encouraging, and a reminder that you are loved, that you were born to love others, and that love is the greatest blessing we shall ever have. When we focus on the love from those we lost, from those we nurture, and from those who love us, we live in gratitude. No darkness can swallow this light. It is a gift that shines in the deepest pit. It is a light that pulls us through excruciating pain, intense anxiety, and the starkest of fear. It is my hope that my work inspires you.

Some of my work is casual, average, mediocre, or unfinished and rough. Some of it is just a frog or an odd composition for a project. But every now and then, I paint a masterpiece, as defined by the person who connects with it and feels understood. When my work becomes something bigger than myself, I have done what I’m meant to do. It is with this in mind that I paint the next project, and the next, knowing that not all of my art will hit the mark, but each painting is one painting toward the ones that do.

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New Painting

Are you enjoying autumn treats? My daughters love the specialty coffee and snacks that come out this time of year. They especially love their sister

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Autumn in 2021

Watch oil painting “Autumn Tree” come to life in under 2 minutes This short project began with an abstract background. Next, while it was still

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New Painting

Watch my new painting “Pumpkin Carving” come to life in just over 2 minutes (time lapse) Father and son enjoying an autumn custom of cleaning

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Worn

Watch this “Armor of God” oil painting come to life in 2 minutes (time lapse) There’s a lot going on in the world today, and

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New Painting

Watch me paint this “Autumn Leaves” oil painting in 2 minutes (time lapse) No matter what is happening in the world or in our personal

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Lion of Judah oil painting by Natalie Buske Thomas

Quiet Lion

Watch me paint this lion oil painting in 2 minutes (time lapse) I changed the music for this video today. Whatever you’re experiencing, you probably

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Not Again!

Watch this oil painting about the dark side of the animal kingdom come to life in 2 minutes (time lapse) I don’t have a painting

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Happy Grief?

Watch this hedgehog oil painting come to life in about 1 minute (time lapse) You might remember when I painted this one and shared it

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Melancholy

Watch this lighthouse painting come to life in 1 minute (time lapse) I share this one when I’m feeling melancholic, flitting back and forth between

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History

Watch this oil painting of the day (July 23, 2020) that the Statue of Liberty in New York City looked to have been struck by

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Things we See

Watch this jellyfish oil painting come to life in just over 1 minute (time lapse) You might remember when I shared this one in April?

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Inspiring

My oil painting of my daughter reading in the butterfly garden… this one doesn’t have a video because I painted this before I started filming

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Sunday Rest

Watch this Irish Angel oil painting come to life in about 2 minutes (time lapse) The image in the video above is a photograph of

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Not Much to Say

This oil painting is called “Silenced”. I originally painted it to express what it feels like to be censored, blacklisted, etc., but as it often

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Unfinished

If you missed my new painting video that I shared yesterday, here it is again. I did something different this time… I took pictures at

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Bad days

Watch this deer oil painting come to life in 2 minutes, and then see below for the real life video I took today! Even when

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Feasting

Watch oil painting “We Gather Together” come alive in about 1 minute (time lapse)

Inspired by my family… that’s me in the red and my husband across from me. Our son in the green, and our two girls nearest to you. Of course this doesn’t look like us exactly, and is out of proportion and perspective, but it captures the warmth and love I feel when I cook for my family. The candlesticks are inspired by real ones I have that were my parents. Dad brought them back from the war and Mom would save them for “good”, which means that she didn’t actually use them. Both my parents died young. I have decided never to save anything for good. Every day that I am alive is a good day.

I spent today cooking up a feast for my family. The plan was to cook up a variety of meats and then use those in different recipes. A full day of cooking and baking that will provide meals for the week ahead. So, I made three dishes from sausage: an egg, red pepper, and sausage scramble for eating inside warm tortillas, a baked pasta dish, and as topping on a homemade pizza. I made three dishes from ground beef: meatballs with egg noodles and gravy, a second topping for the pizza, and part of a second baked pasta dish. And so on. I made cookies also, thumbprint sugar cookies with jam baked in.

The pizza was absurd! It was so heavy because I crammed it with enough toppings to be a meal all by itself: fresh mushrooms, red bell pepper, chopped sweet onion, sliced red onion, sausage, seasoned ground beef, ham, bacon, pepperoni, fresh mushrooms, tomato sauce mozzarella and Parmesan cheese. All of that on a hefty thick homemade yeast crust.

Cooking in a large batch like this can save time and money because each single package of meat was stretched into three or more meals. I plan to start my next painting tomorrow and I won’t have to set aside time to cook. My kids often cook for themselves, but that ties up the kitchen and makes a lot of noise behind my head. My “studio” is just the back wall of the kitchen.

So, there are practical reasons to occasionally take a day for cooking multiple meals ahead, but… the best reason is that the day of cooking means that all of these meals are fresh from the oven at once, like a giant feast. When my family walked in the door after a long day, much of it spent in heavy rains, they were happy to walk into a kitchen bursting with food. They said it smelled like a pizzeria in here.

Holiday times are a wonderful escape. Feasting with family and friends can feel like nothing else matters, and the stress of our lives is far away. Every now and then an ordinary day comes along, and there’s no holiday in sight, and it’s too long to wait for a season that’s months in coming. Why wait for the right time? Why wait for permission, convention, or a date on the calendar? The only day that matters is today.

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What is fun?

Watch this oil painting of my son jumping in leaves come to life in 48 seconds (time lapse) You might remember when I shared this

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Are you Safe?

See oil painting “Guardian Angel” come to life in 2 minutes (time lapse) I last shared this painting here with you in August, in a

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New Painting

Are you enjoying autumn treats? My daughters love the specialty coffee and snacks that come out this time of year. They especially love their sister

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A Month Ago

I painted this just over a month ago, you might remember when I shared it. It feels like much longer to me. Does it to

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Orchard Season

Watch this oil painting of an apple tree branch come to life in 1 minute (time lapse) Have you been enjoying pumpkin spice goodies and

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Autumn in 2021

Watch oil painting “Autumn Tree” come to life in under 2 minutes This short project began with an abstract background. Next, while it was still

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New Painting

Watch my new painting “Pumpkin Carving” come to life in just over 2 minutes (time lapse) Father and son enjoying an autumn custom of cleaning

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Experimentation

Watch this owl and rabbit landscape oil painting come to life in 2 minutes (time lapse) You might remember when I blogged about this. I

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Today is my Birthday!

Watch me paint “Autumn Angel” in 2 minutes (time lapse)

Since today is my birthday, I searched for an oil painting I’ve done that represents who I am. At first, I thought of the most obvious choices, such as ones where I make a cameo appearance, like “Come to the Garden” or “Natalie at the Fountain“. I also thought of paintings that others say represent me, or my most popular signature pieces, but in the end, I decided to go with the one above “Autumn Angel“, who doesn’t look like me, and has not been seen by many people.

At the time, the piece was just to fill a project slot for the collection “50 Oil Paintings Inspired by Savannah, Georgia“. It was inspired by the statues and monuments of angels that tourists like to visit in Savannah’s historic cemeteries. I love the beauty and hope of angels and I decided to paint a “real” one based on likenesses and poses I saw in statues.

I wanted to connect with this oil painting, but I was surprised when I actually, deeply, did. The music especially had a profound effect on me. I watched my own painting video over and over. Something about it feels so sad, so bittersweet, yet loving, peaceful, and kind. Why? Why did I feel this way about this particular painting, when I’ve done so many pieces that were just another project to tick off my list?

Interestingly, this particular painting video was one of the ones attacked by a mob who sought to cancel it because the angel is white. They said she is an “Aryan angel” and therefore racist. Am I not allowed to paint figures who might look like my own heritage? (Irish) I have very fair skin that I cannot change. I had blonde hair when I was a young child that turned light brown, then very dark brown (nearly black) like it is now. I have green eyes. This is just the coloring I was given. I was not born “wrong”.

I have painted diverse skin tones over my career. I do not paint exclusively fair skinned persons. But that’s not really something I have to say. I’ve volunteered it because I want to show that I am experienced in a range of portrait styles, but not to defend myself against something I am not guilty of.

The unprovoked attack by the mob against my artwork was seen only by me. I simply disabled comments and stopped using that platform for new work. It was not a big ordeal involving crimes committed against me, like other situations were. This really was nothing at all… only a few anonymous hateful trolls. It could have become something more if I’d engaged with them, but I didn’t.

However, the incident stirred an expected response in me. I felt violated, as if my personal diary had been read and condemned. I felt protective of this art and didn’t share it much. Why did I feel such a personal connection to this particular painting? I’ve had to reflect on this to write today’s blog post.

While this angel doesn’t look like me, and while no one has given any attention to it as a signature piece of mine, nonetheless, it is this one that I connect with the most. It makes me feel powerful emotions and brings tears to my eyes. This is how I feel about the beauty of life in an ugly and hostile world, a world where joy and grief exist alongside each other.

I love my family so deeply that I cannot bear the thought of them in pain, in fear, or gone from me. The joy of loving them, juxtaposed with the fear of losing them (or them losing me) is what living full out is all about. We cannot have joy without an awareness of grief. Yet every day that we are blessed to share life’s journey is full, happy, and even if woven with trivial irritations or concerns- ultimately beautiful when we are brave enough to love.

Love is like this angel. God’s creation, the elements of nature, surrounds her; ivy is a shelter above her head and autumn leaves cushion her feet. She is not consumed by fire. Though the flames may rage, she remains beautiful and kind. She holds peace of spirit in her hand. 

When I looked out my patio glass at this very second, I could see three, no FIVE, birds right now. Two of them are cardinals. The other three look to be finches. They were perched peacefully alongside each other, occasionally fluttering to change positions. They are still there, but continuously flutter and move, so by the time I finish this blog post they will have moved on. A hummingbird has now joined in, had a nip, and is already gone. This is how fast things move in the bird world of nature.

But there are times when I am among them, when I dare not breathe lest they fly away… when they trust me to stand very near them, sharing space in the natural world, where nothing matters except this moment. We are truly living when we stand in love, extending peace, when the flames of this world can’t consume us, and when God’s protection is over our heads and beneath our feet.

We are blessed to be alive another day, and for me, I’m marking another year. May we have many more years together, as you journey with me to reach my lifetime goal of 1k finished paintings. Happy Birthday to me.

🎂

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The Flag was Still There

Watch me paint “Flag on Tybee Island” in 1 minute (time lapse)

“This is a special roadside American flag on the only way to/from Tybee Island. It was saved from flood waters by police officers after Hurricane Irma, on the anniversary of 9/11 known as Patriots Day. The flag, attached to driftwood, had been a familiar landmark on that stretch of Highway 80 since the 1980’s. The officers knew that evacuees returning home after Hurricane Irma would find their beloved flag to be a comforting sight. They were especially grateful to residents who took care of the weary officers with coffee and encouragement, while first responders were working 12 hour shifts before and after the storm.

I had no idea of the history of this roadside flag when I was inspired to paint it. All I saw was our homeland’s flag waving on that stretch of highway, and I was stirred with emotion. I imagined someone had put that there with love and passion for our country and our people. It was only later that I learned about the story behind this flag. Now it is even more special and I’m happy to have painted it.”

-from book “50 Oil Paintings Inspired by Savannah, Georgia” by artist Natalie Buske Thomas

I’ve lived and traveled in other countries, and while in those nations I enjoyed making dear friends and embracing their flags, customs, and shared values for good food, good friends, and the passion people have for their homes. The people are not the government. Citizens love their flags because they love their homes and their families, their culture and their lives. This is healthy and normal. 

If we hate where our spirits reside, we must make plans to leave that space. Malice toward an entire nation for the sins of few, some, or even many- past, present, or future- is hatred nonetheless. There is no valid justification to hate others. “Activism” does not provide an excuse to hurt people. Change does not require disrespect, destruction, criminal actions, and frothing contempt.

Never take on shame that doesn’t belong to you. The evils of powerful governments are not ours to bear, nor must we destroy our history in order to atone for the wrongs. Communism, fascism, and totalitarianism are not compassionate, but enslaving. Enjoy your home, where your feet are planted. Never let anyone steal your joy. You were born in the right place, at the right time. Wave your homeland’s flag without guilt or fear.

Humanity has its good and bad, but always striving to be better is about creation, not destruction. It is good to love our communities, our homes. We can’t solve all of the world’s problems, but we can be good stewards of the place we live. We can love who we are, so that we may love others. We can appreciate our past so that we may let go of it, live fully in the present, and have hope for the future.

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New Painting

Are you enjoying autumn treats? My daughters love the specialty coffee and snacks that come out this time of year. They especially love their sister

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Be Mysterious

Watch me paint this coastal scene from Dingle, Ireland in 2 minutes (time lapse). I visited this area when I was living in Ireland in 2016.

If you want to win the right to remain fully human, you must first desire freedom from control, enslavement and the systemic breakdown of the human spirit. The first step to control someone is to know them, to predict their moves, habits, and responses. When we know someone, we can then manipulate that person into doing what we want them to do. We can deliberately steer them toward self-destructive paths, or toward a collective (hive mind) that supports our agenda. 

Therefore, the first step toward resisting control and breaking free of brainwashing, is to be mysterious. When we are unpredictable, even computer algorithms that apply scores to our predictive behaviors cannot determine who we are and what we will do. We must choose to be organic, authentic, raw, real, emotional, spiritual, and light-seeking. We must choose love over the absence of it, which eventually becomes malice. For when we are devoid of love, the void is filled by hate. The removal of light is darkness.

It is impossible to have no religion. What we serve simply has a different name. We may not care to name it, but even “nothing” is something. The religion of globalism does not respect the freedom of individual spirituality. We must fight for our freedom by choosing to be mysterious, uncontrolled. We must not comply with illegal orders that violate human rights. We must declare such orders as Crimes Against Humanity and stand firmly together.

We matter.

You matter.

Believe in the beauty that God created: YOU.

Be fully human.

Be mysterious.

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Are you a lion or a lamb?

Watch me paint this lion and lamb art in 2 minutes (time lapse)

A person of faith is meant to have the characteristics of both a lion and a lamb: mighty in spirit while also humble and merciful. But sometimes the balance is thrown. We may struggle to be strong, or struggle to be forgiving.

Character Checklist

The quest for balance in our lives is an everyday struggle, but we can see it as a challenge rather than a hardship. Sometimes all it takes is an attitude adjustment. How we talk to ourselves matters.

Attitude Checklist

  • When I have low energy, am I lazy or am I tired? If I’m lazy, I need to push myself. If I’m tired, I need to give myself permission to rest.
  • When I am passive, is it because I am cowardly and apathetic, or is it because I am wisely staying clear? I need to be honest in my assessment and then act according to my conscience.
  • When I don’t stand up to people, is it because I’m graceful, or is it because I fear uncomfortable situations? Am I avoiding a confrontation? If so, perhaps that’s a wise decision. Perhaps it’s simply the easiest one.

When mired in self-examination, we may forget that we need to treat our neighbors as OURSELVES. Therefore, if we treat ourselves badly, we won’t be up to the challenge of treating others well. We must show ourselves mercy and grace. We must hold ourselves accountable in strong leadership. We must defend ourselves as a mighty warrior of character.

When we show goodness, kindness and mercy to ourselves, we learn how to express these things to others. When we protect ourselves, we train to protect others. Mercy begins at home.

When I’m unsure of what to do, I ask myself “is this an action of faith or fear?” If I’m aligned with the character and attitudes of a lion and a lamb, then my decision is based on faith. If I’m not adhering to those traits, then I’m likely responding in fear. 

Fear is a healthy and normal response, but our actions cannot be ruled by it. Fear is a close cousin to vanity, narcissism, selfishness, and sociopath leanings; as fear can be the foundation for behaviors that place self over others, breeding a lifestyle that is devoid of empathy. When we put our own fears and concerns over the well-being of others, it’s a fast and slippery slope to malice. Apathy and indifference lead to hatred, as it is easy to hate those for whom we care nothing for, and have dehumanized in our hearts. We no longer see each other as people when all we see is a potential threat to ourselves.

We choose faith over fear when we choose love over hate. While dehumanizing leads to apathy, indifference, and eventually hatred, the opposite is true as well. When we see humanity in each other, we feel responsibility and connection. Kindness and the traits of the lamb are more easily cultivated when we grow close to each other. While it is unrealistic to love everyone with the same kind of passion that we love our family and dearest friends, there is a type of love that shows mercy. This is the love we give when we are as lambs.

When the rights of the lambs to live gracefully in peace are threatened, the lions must defend them. All of us are pressed upon to be both a lion and a lamb in character, but not always in corresponding action. Decisions about actions require discernment. Put any concerns to meditation, prayer, and careful listening for answers. Compare your responses to the checklists in this post. Be bold like a lion: act decisively when you know what to do. Be merciful like a lamb: if you are mistaken, forgive yourself.

When we do our best, that’s good enough.

When we live our best, that’s good enough.

Hold yourself to high standards, but be merciful when you judge yourself.

Be as brave as a lion, but as gentle as a lamb- not only to others, but first to yourself.

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New Painting

Are you enjoying autumn treats? My daughters love the specialty coffee and snacks that come out this time of year. They especially love their sister

Read More »

Autumn in 2021

Watch oil painting “Autumn Tree” come to life in under 2 minutes This short project began with an abstract background. Next, while it was still

Read More »

New Painting

Watch my new painting “Pumpkin Carving” come to life in just over 2 minutes (time lapse) Father and son enjoying an autumn custom of cleaning

Read More »

Worn

Watch this “Armor of God” oil painting come to life in 2 minutes (time lapse) There’s a lot going on in the world today, and

Read More »

New Painting

Watch me paint this “Autumn Leaves” oil painting in 2 minutes (time lapse) No matter what is happening in the world or in our personal

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Lion of Judah oil painting by Natalie Buske Thomas

Quiet Lion

Watch me paint this lion oil painting in 2 minutes (time lapse) I changed the music for this video today. Whatever you’re experiencing, you probably

Read More »

Not Again!

Watch this oil painting about the dark side of the animal kingdom come to life in 2 minutes (time lapse) I don’t have a painting

Read More »

Happy Grief?

Watch this hedgehog oil painting come to life in about 1 minute (time lapse) You might remember when I painted this one and shared it

Read More »

Melancholy

Watch this lighthouse painting come to life in 1 minute (time lapse) I share this one when I’m feeling melancholic, flitting back and forth between

Read More »

History

Watch this oil painting of the day (July 23, 2020) that the Statue of Liberty in New York City looked to have been struck by

Read More »

Things we See

Watch this jellyfish oil painting come to life in just over 1 minute (time lapse) You might remember when I shared this one in April?

Read More »

Inspiring

My oil painting of my daughter reading in the butterfly garden… this one doesn’t have a video because I painted this before I started filming

Read More »

Sunday Rest

Watch this Irish Angel oil painting come to life in about 2 minutes (time lapse) The image in the video above is a photograph of

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Dark to Light

Watch me paint “The Moon and the Stars” in 2 minutes

(time lapse)

The phrase “dark to light” is heard a lot these days. Often, people refer to the disclosure of a horrible, grim truth that they perceive has been covered up by those who gain by secrecy and lose with transparency. Some of those issues are factually proven to be the case (powerful persons, entities and governments hiding unfavorable information to evade justice, accountability and/or damage to reputation and standing). Others are propaganda causes that the populace has become irrationally loyal to (causes promoted to manipulate the masses toward political change by skewing statistics and exploiting events, using advanced marketing and profiling strategies along with community organizing and other masking terms to package and disguise the abuse of the citizenry). 

When filtering information to determine if a “movement”, “science” or a call to “civic duty” is real or not, consider the following:

  1. Who is promoting, supporting, and possibly excusing accusations or even concrete proof of wrongdoing associated with their favored issue/agenda/call to action? Are they profiting or benefiting in any way from the popularity of the movement or the response to a call to action? Political gain, monetary gain, notoriety? Where there is motive to lie, there is likely bias, deception, or even outright fraud.
  2. Among those who seem to have no motive to lie, what might motivate them to believe what they do? Do they cite the media or other supporters? In other words, do they trust those in the first point above, those who have motive to lie? In this case, the source is the same, as they merely repeat the same things that untrustworthy, biased sources have said.
  3. If the information is coming only from those motivated to lie, and those who repeat the same things from those same untrustworthy powerful sources, then it’s prudent to research the events, issues, and people ourselves. A wealth of information is found in public sources, meaning that we can simply look statistics up for ourselves. We can compare and contrast the numbers for various issues and see what the true risks, fears, outrage, or hatred level should be. Better yet, since all statistics can be accidentally wrong or intentionally misleading or brazenly fraudulent, it’s good to listen to real people who have experienced things firsthand. In many cases, it is clear that the populace is being deliberately manipulated to respond emotionally and react irrationally to information that has been exploited, skewed, or even invented. This is never for the good of the people, but always for the benefit of those who profit from pushing people to do what they want. Often, SOME of the information is true, which makes forming an opinion difficult (by design… the best con artists use truthful foundations to “sell” a lie that is added to that layer, so when people see the part that is true, they will likely believe that the lies must also be true).
  4. Is this call to action moving at a fast, manic pace, with coordinated messaging meant to push people to respond emotionally? Are the messages hostile, shaming, or fear inducing? Consider that people who genuinely, authentically care about others seldom use an abusive approach to coerce people to act. When truth and pure intention is on our side, we need only honest communication, delivered with respect.

But, the oppressive actions of others (governments, entities, or other organized agents of darkness) are not the kind of “Dark to Light” that I’m talking about. What I’m reflecting upon today is what we can control, which is our own thoughts, beliefs, responses, and actions. Even when it seems that we are powerless, we are not.

There are few instances in life when we are ever in complete and utter darkness. We are more aware of this during a power outage after our eyes adjust to being suddenly without a source of artificial light. Even without a flashlight, candle, or other illuminating tool, we quickly adapt.

Our eyes decipher light when we are in darkness. We see it in the moon and the stars, as it filters through nature and into houses. We see it in reflections bouncing off mirrors, glass, and glossy objects. We see it perhaps on our own bodies or clothing.

The darkness is not purely black, but also purple and blue, and splintered with yellows and whites. We are not in a colorless vacuum, even when it seems we are. This is a metaphor for life. No matter how dark it seems, there is always light if we train our eyes to see it.

Seek good people.

Do things that give you joy.

Work passionately.

Love fiercely.

Play hard.

The darkness of lies, deception, manipulation, greed, and evil cannot destroy us without our consent. We give consent spiritually when we comply with the call to live in fear, anger, and malice. We refuse to comply when we choose the opposite- when every call to live in darkness is countered by living in Light. 

When the world says “FEAR”,

we must say hope.

 

When the world demands “ANGER”,

we must choose self-control.

 

When the world screeches as demons, commanding we live in “MALICE”,

we must choose love.

 

Hate destroys, love creates.

 

When enough love is created, it outshines the hate. When the global focus is on destroying everything “bad”, destruction overtakes creation, leaving the world in darkness.

 

When the world is saying, “hurry, hurry, act NOW”, when the world is shaming those who do not respond, and when the world leverages others to do what they demand, this is an abusive relationship. A healthy relationship allows space for people to reflect and make careful decisions before acting. A healthy relationship doesn’t play around with emotions- using gimmicks and flattery, and manipulative language to entice people to act together as a group to feel as if we belong… and then if this fails, snapping and turning on reluctant citizens in psychotic anger. A healthy relationship is one that cares about the truth so deeply that the source matters. Anyone with profit motive, associations with those who have a profit motive, or who are merely quoting those who do, are not valid sources. This matters when one cares about the truth more than an agenda.

We must reject dysfunctional relationships, whether they come from people in our inner circle, our workplace, our communities, our governments, or our global society. We must be empowered to counter unreasonable or cruel demands with demands of our own. Demand these things:

  • Time: we must be granted the freedom to slow down, think, and filter information at our own pace.
  • Calm: we must be protected from shaming campaigns, hostility, and punishments. As they have all of the information and have the advantage, we must have calm as we process what is demanded of us.
  • Power: we must have the power to say no. We must have recourse if we choose not to believe in the positions that force change, in the science that forces change, in the doomsday scenarios proposed, etc. It is not our responsibility to prove our right to freedom. It is THEIR responsibility to prove us guilty of citizen crimes. It is THEIR responsibility to prove their claims and their supposed reasons for why the world must comply with their demands. It is THEIR responsibility to prove that we must change our thoughts, words, associations, and actions to comply with their agendas.

If, after thoughtful consideration of the data, facts, information, and personal experiences of all parties, we decide that we agree with the claims used to argue for change, then it becomes our choice to comply. We deserve that choice. This applies to any situation, as there is no such thing as a social crisis, health or climate emergency, or impending disaster great enough that there is no time or space for individual human freedoms. Anyone who claims otherwise is using panic, fear, and bullying techniques to push people to make impulsive illogical decisions that always land in favor of those in power who benefit.

Analyze if dysfunctional relationship traits are clearly visible in the darkness. If you see unhealthy coercion, it doesn’t matter how many people are doing it or how widely coordinated it is, it is wrong. There is always a better way. There is no such thing as hate for one’s own good. Goodness and kindness give time, space, and calm to people. We do not abuse each other in the name of progress.

Today, if you feel pressured and pulled, imagine yourself as that little figure I painted in the video at the top of this post. There you are, standing in a peaceful space, in which you see that the darkness has beautiful colors. You are not without light, as you have the sky to guide you. No one can keep you from this spiritual place, where you can choose calm and hope over mania and fear. You can look up at the divine order instead of down at the manufactured chaos.

Choose to be loved as you deserve to be loved.

If you make this commitment, pay attention to what you see.

I wouldn’t be at all surprised if you see something beautiful… a butterfly that flies directly in your path as if to communicate with you, an unexpected visit by a wild animal, a flower growing in an odd place where you never planted it, or something else. Just wait and see.

When we choose to see Light, we do.

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