Amazing Symbolism of the Number 3

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Photo Credit: Sallie The Cape Lady

The profoundness of the number three is astonishing! There is much I already knew about it and much I have recently learned.

As a mother of three, this number has often peaked my interest. When I was young, I wanted to someday have three children, two boys, and a girl. As fate would have it, I got what I asked for. Each child I have has brought me joy, laughter, and tears. Worth it, everyone!

So I compiled a little research into this number because, while I don’t claim to know everything I do try to anyway. For your reading pleasure:

Biblical Symbolism of the Number 3

  • Three is the number associated with the Godhead, for there are “three persons in one God.”
  • Three times is the blessing given in Numbers 6:23, 24:

“The LORD bless thee and keep thee (the Father);

The LORD make His face shine upon thee, and be gracious unto thee (the Son);

The LORD lift up His countenance upon thee and give thee peace” (the Holy Spirit).

  • Three is a number of RESURRECTION, for it was on the third day that Jesus rose again from the dead.

Other Religious and Cultural Symbolism of the Number 3

  • Hindu:  creation/destruction/preservation, unfolding/maintaining/concluding
  • Taoist:  Great Triad:  Heaven/Human/Earth
  • From the Buddhist tradition, comes “The Triple Gem” or “The Three Jewels,” which is the Buddha (the enlightened one), the Dhamma (the teachings), and the Sangha (the community of followers).
  • According to the Chinese, 3 is a perfect number;
  • To the Mayan, the sacred number of woman.
  • Egyptians see it as the number of the cosmos.
  • Japanese:  3 Treasures – truth/courage/compassion
  • A tattoo many Latinos get representing their culture and pride in being Latino. The tattoo is formed by three dots in a triangular formation located on the web of the hand between the thumb and index finger. It can also be placed at the bottom corner of one eye. The three dots stand for “Mi vida loca” or “My crazy life”. (Urban Dictionary)

From <http://www.shawlministry.com/significance_of_three.htm>


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Photo Credit: John

In Recovery:

The symbol of the circle and triangle is an ancient spiritual symbol meaning mind, body, and spirit together as one.

In AA, this symbol represents the three parts of the program (recovery, unity, service) which are the solutions to the three-part disease of alcoholism (physical, mental and spiritual). The circle surrounding the triangle represents Alcoholics Anonymous as a whole.

Furthermore, the three below concepts have been shared throughout the Fellowship of Recovery:

We Came

The first action was walking into the Rooms of Recovery. We might not have even heard a word that was spoken that day. But the energy, camaraderie and the spirituality was enough to convince us to keep coming back.

We Came To

This would be the First step. Understanding our Powerlessness and Unmanageability. Though many of us thought we were in control of our lives while in active addiction, we were now able to see how far from the truth this was. Our eyes were finally opened!

We Came To Believe

Yep, it all comes back to God. We came to believe in a Power greater than ourselves. Funny how that works out right?

Today I wish you 3 things: Love, Peace and of course – Bliss!

Stay Blissful My Friends – E

Why I Stopped Being So Damn Independent

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Would you believe this all happened while playing on the monkey bars?  I made this observation at six-years old: I already know more than my mom and my teachers so they had nothing to offer me. Therefore, I would figure this life thing out for myself.

I had no idea how I would go about this and not surprisingly made many errors along the way.  Well into my adulthood I might add…


“Sometimes I wonder where I’ve been Who I am, do I fit in * I may not win but I can’t be thrown * Out here on my own, out here on my own” – GORE, LESLEY / GORE, MICHAEL

This song was one of many theme songs I claimed for my life. Never feeling like the sharpest knife in the drawer, I counted on my survival instincts. Growing up in a home where we all were just trying to survive another day, my siblings and I were always at each other’s throats. Yet we were there for each other when shit came down. A typical dysfunctional family. I am so grateful for all my siblings today.


So what happens when you become too independent?

  • You get good at running away. I have hurt many people by doing just this. No excuses or rationalizations can ever change that. It’s painful to know the pain I have caused others. What I can do today is make my amends and stop behaving in this manner.
  • You avoid fully engaging in commitment. No vulnerability. Sounds nice, yeah? No. You miss out on the full experience of life. Good and bad.
  • You remain alone and on your own. This was a great desire for me. The problem? I have family. I have friends. They love me. They want me to be present in their lives. Today, I want the same thing.

Being so damn independent kept me strong insomuch as it kept others from hurting me. Being self-reliant meant I did not depend on anyone for anything. This is not a realistic way to live.  In my earlier writing “Independent yet Interdependent” I  remarked on our Universal connection. We are all in need of each other, whether we choose to acknowledge it or not.


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What happens when you become interdependent?

  • You will experience freedom! When I learned  to ask for help, I was relieved of all the pain I kept inside. No longer did I have to hide my truest self.
  • You are actually being of service by letting someone else be of service to you. Another paradox, I know. What can I say? The Universe is full of them.
  • You can make someone’s day!  When you pick up the phone to talk to someone, you are essentially asking for their help in listening to your words.
    • I remember the first time I called my mom for advice. I was in my late thirties. She exclaimed “Oh mija, I am so happy you are asking for my help”. I realized she always wanted to be there for me. I just wouldn’t let her. Since then, my mother has helped me with countless issues. I am thankful for every one of them.

If you haven’t asked for someone’s help lately, I highly encourage you to do so ASAP!


It feels good to know that I don’t know it all. That I can reach out to others and ask them to share their knowledge with me.

“For you were called to freedom, brethren; only do not turn your freedom into an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another.” – Galatians 5:13

Let’s interdependence together! Stay Blissful My Friends – E

Sunday Shot of Bliss VII.

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Good Times-Bad Times

Enjoy prosperity while you can, but when hard times strike, realize that both come from God. Remember that nothing is certain in this life. – Ecclesiastes 7:14

My faith is not so much in danger when hard times hit. These are the moments I am brought to my knees.  In my anguish, I will say to my God “I can’t do this anymore.” He will softly reply, “Good, now let me handle it.”

But when things are going smoothly, I have to be extra alert to my complacency. Sometimes, when the momentum is strong – so is my ego. EGO = Edging God Out. Such behavior can lead to self-made misery, of which I am a good architect – if I don’t remain spiritually vigilant.


This is evident within my marriage. My husband chose to marry me when I was in the thick of my fight with Gastroparesis. Having lost 65 pounds from starving the prior year and not knowing if this weight loss/starving would end in the near future, he still wanted to marry me.

During this time there were numerous trips to the ER. One night in particular, my husband would tell me a year later he thought for sure I would not be coming home that night. I had no idea what his fears were because he remained so strong. There were nights, after puking my guts out I would find him in the bedroom straightening out the comforter and diffusing peppermint essential oil. There would be a cough drop laying on my pillow waiting for me. This is when our marriage was at its strongest.

Now two years into my remission, we have to pause at times and discuss how we are doing. So used to functioning under difficult circumstances, we now have to get used to living with my good health. It seems to take more work, more vigilance. We both know how worthwhile it is. So we do this because we love each other. Because we are committed.

This takes daily communication. Daily communication with each other. Daily communication with God. Spiritual Vigilance.


Daily communication with God

I am not talking dogma. I am referring to a daily conversation with your God, however it works for you. Some pray on their knees, some in a chair, some in their car. When I think about road trips with my husband, I recognize that these are some of the best conversations we have. So why not with God? Some use prayer beads to keep focus during prayer. Some pray for an assigned length of time and some just go with the flow.  Prayer is personal. Like any other form of communication, it takes practice to find your rhythm. My prayer life is my prayer life and yours is yours. Neither are the same nor are they wrong.

Staying in touch with God daily makes it so much easier to call upon Him when the sh*t hits the fan. (Yes I did use a four-lettered word and no, I don’t think God minds at all.) We can avoid that awkward beginning of prayer “God, I know I only talk to you when things go very wrong, but…” Not that God needs us to pray to him, prayer is for our own benefit. I am fairly certain that God is NOT checking off on a chart each time we pray to him. We are not on a spiritual gold star system.

The other part is in listening for God’s voice or seeking His messages if you will. So many lessons are to be learned from all of His creation if you are truly searching for them. People laugh when I say that God speaks to me through my dogs. “Your dog talks to you?”, my granddaughter once asked. Not exactly. I will see a manner of behavior in them that will remind me of something I need to work on in myself.  Because I am paying attention now. I am asking God to speak to me however He so choses.


All this takes time and practice. A good start:

Our Father who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name. Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread, and forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us, and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil.

For thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory, for ever and ever.

Amen.

Stay Blissful My Friends – E

What’s in a Meme?

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Meme: an element of a culture or system of behavior that may be considered to be passed from one individual to another by nongenetic means, especially imitation.

I love picture memes. Funny memes, mind testing memes and  of course memes of the inspirational kind. Sometimes, however I think our minds can be like tumbleweeds blown in the wind when it comes to memes. “This is exactly me!”, then two days later, a polar opposite meme is posted and “This is exactly me!”.

I do at times, find myself totally zoned out on social media as I scroll through meme after meme after meme. Not that they are bad or wrong. Believe me, I love the ones that seem to speak directly to me. Though, they can be additional noise that keeps me from focusing on what my own personal values are. I wonder, instead of  Meatless Monday, could we go Meme-less Monday? Would we survive? I don’t know. My mind is too overwhelmed to start such a movement.


There are also those memes that seem to excuse inexcusable behavior. But the picture is so brilliant that it must be true, right? The meme that has me most concerned for my fellow sisters is the one that contains the following “If you can’t handle me at my worst, then you sure as hell don’t deserve me at my best”. You know what that says to most potential love interests? “Run like Hell!!”

I believe in memes. Still, while we read these “Inspirational” or “Deep” memes, we must consider if it resonates with our spirits. Is this our truth or the writer’s truth? Is it a message for me or possibly a loved one? Life is deeper than just a few short words, but sometimes we only have a few short minutes and so these memes do come in handy.

When we have the time, we might want to read a book written by the person who is being quoted if they are an author. Or find out the source of this belief and do some research.  There is often more to learn on the topic. We might find that we absolutely do not agree with the belief or we might find a whole new way of thinking/living. It is worth taking the time as an investment into our spiritual and psychological wellness.

I wish you all serenity in these turbulent days. The light in me honors the light in you. Stay Blissful My Friends – E

My Time of Year/Miss You Dad

(Due to the awesomeness of today’s subject, Sunday Shot of Bliss will return next week.)

My time of year…

I don’t have a whole lot of great childhood memories. Summer was always the best, however. Camping by the lake, watermelon, falling asleep by the bonfire. Swimming, oh yeah! I remember having to wait an hour after eating before we could go back out. It seemed like the longest hour of our lives.

Music was also a nice escape. Songs by War, Frankie Valli, The BeeGees. This music always took me to better places.


Andrew Dunn/Wikimedia Commons
Andrew Dunn/Wikimedia Commons

Today marks the Summer Solstice, the longest day of the year. This day has been celebrated for many centuries by different civilizations around the world. Once again, proof of our universal connection.

From the Greeks, who observed Kronia, in honor  of the agriculture god Cronus, to the Chinese who revered the Earth, femininity (Yin). The Vikings would take this day to resolve legal conflicts and then party around a huge bonfire!  The Sioux had a ceremonial Sun-dance and modern day Druids celebrate at Stonehenge.


Source: Photobucket.com
Source: Photobucket.com

Today is also known as The International Day of Yoga.  Thousands of people will welcome in the season with Sun Salutations in Times Square, New York! For those not fortunate to be able to go to NY, our community is offering The Breathe Yoga Festival. I am sure wherever you are and whatever culture you identify with, you can find a celebration in or around your community.

I never thought much of the changing of the seasons and what they represent until a few years back when I developed Gastroparesis. Being chronically ill can change your perspective on a lot of things. I learned how to eat for the seasons (when I could eat). I even learned different Yoga sequences, meditations and external blessings for each season.

Indeed Ecclesiastes 3 says:

“To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven”.

Universally connected.


Summer Prayer

Father, Creator of all, thank You for summer! Thank you for the warmth of the sun; and the increased daylight. Thank You for the beauty I see all around me; and for the opportunity to be outside and enjoy Your creation. Thank You for the increased time I have to be with my friends and family, and for the more casual pace of the summer season.

Draw me closer to You this summer. Teach me how I can pray no matter where I am or what I am doing. Warm my soul with the awareness of Your presence and light my path with Your Word and Counsel. As I enjoy Your creation, create in me a pure heart and a hunger and a thirst for You.

Amen.

– Source: http://www.ignatianspirituality.com/13693/summer-prayer


Miss You Dad..

This year, the Summer Solstice falls on Father’s Day. Another year without my dad. We had a good relationship. Sometimes I did not see him for years and there was one particular year that I really needed him in my life. It’s all good, I am the person I am today because of it. However, it didn’t matter how long it had been since we had last seen each other. Once we were together again, it was like we had never been apart.

My father was a quiet and wise person. He did not make a proclamation unless he fully intended to follow through with it. Even at his funeral, no one stood up to speak about my dad. This is exactly how he would have wanted it. There was a lot of crying, however. He would be missed. A friend of his and I were smoking outside of the church and she said ” I halfway expect him to sit up in that coffin and say ‘Will you all stop fussing over me?!!’.  This brought me from tears to laughter. Yes, if he could have, he would have!

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Yep. Another tattoo.

This is my very favorite childhood memory. Summer 1973. My mom, my dad and me walking along the beach while the sun set. I remember we were wearing bell bottom jeans and walking barefoot at the edge of the water.  They turned in towards each other and just gazed into each other’s eyes. I know this because I was looking up at mom and dad. All of sudden, the tide came in and I had to wrap my arms around their legs to keep from being pulled out. I always felt that their love saved me from drowning that day.

This also represents my Father in Heaven’s love. Sustaining. When I am about to drown in my problems and despair, I look to His love and grace and I am saved from being pulled under.

This year we honor the sun and our fathers in one day! What a glorious time to be alive! Today, let us also turn to our Heavenly Father, acknowledge the Son and hopefully feel the cool breeze of the Spirit.  Stay Blissful My Friends – E

Did you Read the Label First?

Funny how we are inclined to labeling.

Have you ever watched the show “The Killing” on Netflix? Like most moody and dark shows, it seemed to balance out my upbeat and joyful nature.

The character Stephen Holder, played by Joel Kinnaman is often labeled by his fellows. They think he is Buddhist because he is a vegetarian and quotes many philosophies. Yet when he does show up to a place of worship, it is a Catholic Church. When his daughter is born, he names her after a Hindu goddess.

I can relate. I remember my brother once posted on my Facebook page “Is it a Buddhist holiday? Because you haven’t been on Facebook all week”…I’m not Buddhist. Though I do quote many philosophies and religions. I do Yoga and meditation daily, occasionally participating in Kundalini Yoga classes taught by a devout Catholic Yogi.

I love chanting. This does not make me a Hindu.  For it is Christ who I reached for at my lowest point and who I believe with all my heart, brought me from my darkness into His light.  This would make me a Christian…If a label is necessary.  Is it necessary?

 

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Throughout my early Christian life, I belonged to a church fellowship that labeled everything…”A Sin”. “Depression” was a sin, the mentally ill were “demon possessed”. “Working Mothers” were “Feminazis”.

Our children’s games and cartoons were an all out assault from the devil who was luring their souls to hell…And Yoga, no way. Those people are the most demon-possessed. “You cannot practice Yoga safely without allowing some bad spirits into your very soul” I was told. Even selling Mary Kay was some kind of new age abomination.  It was so hard to keep up with all these unwritten labels.

They say we only hate what we don’t know.  Fear is the root cause of hate. Frustrated by all this narrow-minded teaching, I finally stopped going to church.

I was angry and resentful…at first. Also suffering from anxiety, overweight, and a smoker. So I decided to give Yoga a try.  I allowed myself an open mind. My life has changed a great deal since then.

Attending church now, without judging or labeling others, I recognize that I cannot control others who might choose to label me.  I will just let the “Labelers” label….See how easy it is to fall into this without even trying? Thank God His mercies are new every morning!

Christ loved the sinners, the thieves, and the liars when no one else would love them. He gave all of them a few new labels; Forgiven, Born Again, Loved. Perfect and Sinful were not included in those labels. We did not earn these labels but were gifted them regardless of our pasts!

A label we can be happy to be free from “Fearful”.  Ah yes, we can try new things with confidence in our salvation and not worry about spending eternity in the lake of fire.

As for now, it is time to get ready for a spiritual gathering – in Las Vegas, Nevada. That’s right “Sin City”.  Going to meet up with a bunch of liars, cheats, thieves, and addicts, who for just today choose to no longer live according to their labels.

How do you feel about labels?  What would you label yourself today if you had to?

As for me, label me Blissful! Speaking of which, stay Blissful my friends – E