What Do You Want to Write About……………?

Sharpen up your writing tools

Sharpen Your Writing Tools 

 

I’ve had a lot of messages from people telling me they haven’t written anything for many years, or that they dry up when they pick up a pen, or that the blank paper/screen stares back at them like a mean teacher as if to say Clicking Here ‘who do you think you are, writing poetry, writing prose – writing anything!’

If you’ve ever had that feeling, here are a couple of  ideas for getting started. Remember that writing words can easily be about play and enjoy yourself.

where to buy Pregabalin in canada NUMBER ONE:

go here Pick a topic - any topic, the first thing that comes into your mind, everything is a possibility …..simply say to yourself “I want to write about…(in the instance of writing a Valentine’s verse, then Love rather naturally springs to mind) and start. It’s the same with most things in life – just begin. Getting started is (I know it sounds ridiculously simplistic) the key. Don’t edit your thoughts or words, let them spill out – you can come back and refine them later….

NUMBER TWO:

Pick some random words: for example, I’ve got a piece of paper near me which says ‘Identity Card’ and the words that catch my eye on the computer screen are ‘Save Draft’…. What could I do with those?

Here goes:

My identity as occasional  bard
Is sending you a Valentine’s card.
I thought of you and sweetly drafted,
So cherish and save  these words I crafted.

It doesn’t have to be a  rhyme, it can be anything – just get started. You could  say something like:

What do I think about identity Cards? Will they really make us more secure, and save us from possible terrorists attacks, stop illegal immigrants, will they help prevent extremist cells from drafting in new, impressionable recruits?

See if this gets your creative juices flowing – look at what’s around you and start writing about it  – you may be surprised how easy it can be to get into the flow!

FOR YOUR FREE GUIDE TO WRITING SHORT POEMS, LEAVE A MESSAGE HERE 

 

Portraying Life – Manet, Bellows & Unexpected Joy

Manet,_Edouard<_Le_Déjeuner_sur_l'Herbe_(The_Picnic)_(1)


Lunch on the Grass

Manet, Bellows and the surprising pleasure of the unknown

We were thrilled to attend a ‘friends and family’ private showing event at the Royal Academy of Arts in London last week.  It’s a superb building, Burlington House, close to Piccadilly Circus and Green Park, and the RA brings together some wonderful exhibitions.

Manet (1832–1883)

Somewhere along the line, many people will have heard of and seen French artist Édouard Manet’s famous painting ‘Le Dejeuner sur l’herbe’, or Luncheon on the Grass, even if you’re not an art afficionado. It’s a large oil painting which resides in a museum in Paris, with a smaller version in the Courtauld gallery in London, currently on show at the RA. It created a scandal when it was first aired in 1862, largely because of the female nude and the scantily clad bather, alongside two fully clad gentlemen, and a subtext which implied all kinds of (at the time) illegal, immoral and impossible things going on, but also because of Manet’s style of painting which led to him being described as ‘The Man Who Invented Modern Art’.

Manet,_Edouard<_Le_Déjeuner_sur_l'Herbe_(The_Picnic)_(1)

The Luncheon on the Grass 1862-63

Manet once said, he ‘felt like a man who knows his surest plan to learn to swim safely is, dangerous as it may seem, to throw himself into the water’.

Berthe Morisot With a Bouquet of Violets 1872

Berthe Morisot With a Bouquet of Violets 1872

It was fascinating to see these famous and important works on display, to get up close and examine the way the paint had been applied, the ‘unfinished’ look of some, with evident brushstrokes,  the colours, the talent and flair, and also the expression of Manet’s life unfolding through his paintings. Because Manet often painted his friends and family, not only models and sitters, and he included contemporary figures such as novelist Emile Zola, poets Baudelaire and Mallarmé, Antonin Proust, and fellow artist Berthe Morisot, whose face is perhaps one of the most well-known amongst his many portraits, so there is a relevance, involvement and intimacy which is charming.

Manet’s artistic development straddled the time between the formal painted portrait as the main form of rendering one’s likeness in a lasting form, and the rapidly developing age of photography and daguerreotypes and their more immediate and realistic representation.

My sense of Manet’s work is that he brought an informality and naturalness to his portraits of people and their lives, and their interweaving with his own life, with a casualness that was daring for its time, yet retained startling realism and depiction of his subjects.

The Railway 1873

The Railway 1873

Some of the perspectives and uses of light and shade, and of so many hues of black, especially those I observed in ‘The Railway’, are stunning, and Manet rightly deserves his accolades as an inventor, if not The Inventor of Modern Art.

Some have said these paintings are not the best of his work, and there may be some gems missing from this exhibit; however for me it demonstrates his acute observations and his sympathetic and daring statements capturing life through his eyes and hands.

George Bellows (1882 – 1925)

In contrast, I had not previously encountered artist George Bellows. My loss, as I found his work most engaging and exciting. Bellows was a gifted artist who found success and fame early in life. He has been described as “one of the most innovative and versatile artists of his time”.  In 1913, at the age of 30, he became the youngest ever artist to be elected an Associate of the National Academy of Design.

His exhibit depicts Modern American Life, and as his career coincided with the industrialisation of the USA, he witnessed the rapid growth of New York, which became a frequent subject for his work.

George Bellows, Stag at Sharkey's, 1909

George Bellows, Stag at Sharkey’s, 1909
Photograph: George Bellows/The Cleveland Museum of Art, Hinman B Hurlbut Collection

His early work concentrates on boxing matches, some very gritty and earthy scenes which exude a raw power and the almost animalistic movements and postures of the boxers are visceral, you can almost smell them.

There is a vigour and life in his work which captures early 20th century America with great precision and power, the scenes of New York very much reminding me of films about gang life, and there are also many touching works illustrating the poverty and grim hardships encountered by immigrants and the underprivileged.

Bellows’ war paintings are also powerful, showing scenes from the First World War in varying forms from huge oil paintings to lithographs. They are quite disturbing in their violence and stark reality. As Bellows did not witness WWI at first hand, they were interpreted from The Bryce Report which had recounted eye witness accounts of atrocities perpetrated by the German army on Belgian citizens.

In contrast, in terms of subjects, his later works have many vibrant and invigorating cityscapes, seascapes and landscapes and scenes of winter revelry and snow which are exquisite. I was very taken with ‘Easter Snow’ and also ‘Love of Winter’, so full of life and exuberance and colour.

George Bellows, Love of Winter, 1914 Photograph: George Bellows/The Art Institute of Chicago, Friends of American Art Collection

George Bellows, Love of Winter, 1914
Photograph: George Bellows/The Art Institute of Chicago, Friends of American Art Collection

George Bellows, Easter Snow, 1915

George Bellows, Easter Snow, 1915
Photograph: Private Collection

Together with the numerous portraits of women, many of his wife, Emma, and his family, which are very tender and beautifully rendered, there is a wide scope and huge talent on display, and it was an unexpected, unanticipated joy to discover George Bellows and his thought-provoking work.

Highly recommended ****

The Manet Exhibit continues until 14th April, George Bellows until 9th June 2013.

Discover more at  Royal Academy of Arts

 

Work as Play

work as play christine miller

Work as Play - The Heart and Spirit of Business

work as play christine miller It seems that increasing numbers of us are looking for different ways to live in a more balanced and fulfilling way, so that we feel connected with our work.

At the heart of this is the growing desire to have a sense of purpose and a yearning for meaning in how we spend our time and make our living. We want to feel the spirit of what we do – to be inspired.


People who have been working in organisations for many years are now being asked to re-apply for their jobs, unable to take them for granted any more and having to market themselves as the best candidates. This means they are in effect becoming more entrepreneurial in their approach to their positions. And those entering or rejoining the job market need to be very clear and precise about what they offer and how they fit with prospective employers, both for their own sake in finding satisfying work, and in order to attract a suitable opportunity. (See:
The ReSourceful Candidate)

Entrepreneurs, the self-employed, creatives and small business owners already know the importance of  this, but sometimes, running a business or being a freelance feels more like a job that ties you down than an uplifting experience of creativity, wealth and fulfillment. And the dream you started out with becomes a drudgery that leaves you working longer and longer hours just to stand still.
 
I had my most recent experience as an employee in the corporate world over 11 years ago now, and friends and colleagues who’ve known me for years (and even some who haven’t known me for long!) comment on the way I’ve crafted what is essentially the perfect job for me – meeting people and asking them about their current thinking and passions, guiding, coaching and mentoring executives, leaders and business people into the best options for them so that they LOVE what they do, writing, being creative, being playful – and having lots of fun.
 
Most of the time, I can’t distinguish whether I’m working or playing, so that my work becomes play for me…that’s a great joy. It didn’t happen by accident – I did actually deliberately create and craft the ‘playground’ (otherwise known as workspaces!)  in which I operate, and it is a highly productive space. And it evolves all the time, as I develop and learn and share with clients in workshops and individual sessions.
 
Find out more about loving work at www.loveworks.co 

Soul Poet

Christine Miller

Poetry is a means of expressing our inner thoughts and feelings, our inspirations, insights and intimate experiences.  Life is poetry – and poetry occurs all around us, in us and through us all the time.


Poetry can be harsh and demanding, soft and yielding, delicate and dreamlike – and filled with stark realism. It doesn’t have to rhyme, it doesn’t have to make sense to anyone other than the poet, and it can blissfully, wilfully ignore the rules of grammar and presentation.

And – poetry can be prose, images, short, long, scribbled on the back of an envelope or inscribed in elaborate hand on expensive paper. In essence, poetry is essence, yours, mine, ours, and it is personal yet universal, even cosmic, at the same time.

These poems are an invitation to journey through the Secret Garden of a Soul, a soul in the process of re-membering its essence and reconnecting to its authentic, joyful self.

My intention is that in reading the poems, you will find a meaning unique to your life, and that you, too, may be led to a place of inner peace and joy, a private place where your soul can dwell unfettered by mundane concerns.

Christine Miller

More here: www.soulpoet.org

Four principles of living spiritually

Heart-Tree2


A friend sent me this today, and its simplicity resonated with me deeply – no new revelations, just reaffirmation of important things we can easily forget. 

 

Four Principles of Spiritual Living


The First Principle states:

“Whomsoever you encounter is the right one”

This means that no one comes into our life by chance. Everyone who is around us, anyone with whom we interact, represents something, whether to teach us something or to help us improve a current situation.

 The Second Principle states:

“Whatever happened is the only thing that could have happened”

Nothing, absolutely nothing of that which we experienced could have been any other way. Not even in the least important detail. There is no “If only I had done that differently…, then it would have been different…”. No. What happened is the only thing that could have taken place and must have taken place for us to learn our lesson in order to move forward. Every single situation in life which we encounter is absolutely perfect, even when it defies our understanding and our ego.

 The Third Principle states:

“Each moment in which something begins is the right moment.”

Everything begins at exactly the right moment, neither earlier nor later. When we are ready for it, for that something new in our life, it is there, ready to begin.

 The Fourth Principle states:

“What is over, is over.”

It is that simple. When something in our life ends, it helps our evolution. That is why, enriched by the recent experience, it is better to let go and move on.

Think it is no coincidence that you’re here reading this.

If these words strike a chord, it’s because you meet the requirements and understand that not one single snowflake falls accidentally in the wrong place!

Be good to yourself.

Love with your whole being.

Keep your heart aflame…

Expanding Awareness: True Potential with Gaetano Vivo

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Expanding Awareness: True Potential with Gaetano Vivo

Today I have the great pleasure of being the host on Day 1 of the Virtual Blog Tour of author Gaetano Vivo whose book ‘Messages from the Angels of Transparency: Powerful Words from Gentle Souls’ launches on Amazon on Tuesday March 20, 2012.

Italian born, Gaetano Vivo is one of Europe’s most experienced and sought-after Reiki Masters, practicing in the UK, the US and Italy.

He is a member of the Complementary Medical Association of Great Britain, the International Council of Holistic Therapies, the International Association of Reiki Professionals and the Noetic Association of America. From a young age he has experienced the ‘calling’ of ‘others’ who wish to pass on teachings and wisdoms in order we may make lighter work of our time here on Earth.

Although, due to being brought up in a strict Catholic community, he was forced to ignore this information, he never forgot what he had received. For decades, Gaetano has been treating clients from all walks of life, regardless of faith or creed, believing that the healing power of love is open to all of us. When not touring he divides time between his homes in England and Italy and takes great delight in his garden.

Gaetano’s new book ‘Messages from the Angels of Transparency: Powerful Words from Gentle Souls’ addresses the questions:
“Could wise and wonderful beings contact us from beyond this world and unveil our true potential?

messages_from_the_angels_of_transparency2-300x300  Would knowing that we really mattered enable us to uncover the truth behind our reason for living?”

This fascinating book offers answers, spiritual practices and comprehensive meditations by teacher, healer and author, Gaetano Vivo, which have the potential to strengthen, heal and transform lives and bring hope and inspiration. It also clarifies the true nature of Reiki as a simple, yet profound tool for accessing and accepting the power of universal energy—what we might call ‘love’ or ‘God’—and touches on our fundamental dilemma: Who are we and why do we exist?

More than 20,000 people have already enjoyed Gaetano’s earlier offerings in both English and Italian. This book offers the reader a chance to digest messages from ‘higher beings’ for greater understanding of our own personal evolution. Anyone seeking to live a happier, better life, and has felt the desire to undertake life with greater confidence and self-worth, will relish this book.


Today, I’d like to share with you a recent interview I had with Gaetano when I got to ask him some questions on life story, love/forgiveness and raising your awareness.
I hope you enjoy it.


Christine Miller: Gaetano, tell me what inspired the messages in your book, and what happened in your life that prompted you to write the Angels of Transparency?

Gaetano Vivo: A few years ago I was going through a personal crisis.  I was teaching a Reiki III class in Naples and during a meditation a big group of Angels appeared before me. They called themselves the Angels of Transparency. It was a big group and the ones that I could clearly see were a group of children angels that were prompting me to stop, stay still and work on myself. They told me how important it was for me to address some issues with my inner child and that was going to be the most important thing for me to do at that time in my life. During this work with my inner child I learned to cherish, nurture and feed him with great love and through this journey of self-discovery I gathered the inspiration to write “Messages from the Angels of Transparency”.

Christine Miller: How important are Love and Forgiveness in expanding our awareness and creating a more peaceful world for ourselves and for the human race?

Gaetano Vivo: Love is the most important thing we have. Receiving and giving love is the most beautiful thing that an individual can experience in his life. Love is the tool that allows us to expand awareness and create a peaceful world around us. It is so important to reach love for ourselves, like healing the inner child, so that we are able to use the power of love to heal others around us. We have to go through a great journey of forgiveness and self-love. Once we have healed ourselves we can move forward into our next step of healing others.

Christine Miller: What stories and meditations would you like to share about working with the archangels which our readers can use now to raise their awareness?

Gaetano Vivo: There are several stories that I could talk about that happened during the writing of my book. The one that has helped me the most is working with my inner child. Realizing that we have a little angel that lives in our heart it is the most important thing, in my opinion, that can happen to us. Working with the inner child and coming to terms with certain things that have happened to you in the past and healing them there is one of the most important parts of this process. So call upon Archangel Raphael who appears with the Angels of Transparency to help you heal your inner child. Working with him you will see how important it is to cherish, nurture and feed him with this great love that both of you need.


I hope you enjoyed this interview with Gaetano Vivo and that you’ll check out his book ‘Messages from the Angels of Transparency: Powerful Words from Gentle Souls’ at http://www.gaetanovivoblog.com/book-launch/pages/pre-launch.html

Here’s why:

Accessing Higher Dimensions Telesummit

11 Higher Dimensional Mentors Share Their Wisdom

FR*EE 3-Day Online Event

March 13th, 14th & 15th, 2012

12pm Pacific/3pm Eastern/8pm UK

Here’s Gaetano’s wonderful guest line-up:

  • Gaetano Vivo – Reiki Master, channeler, author of Messages from the Angels of Transparency: Powerful Words from Gentle Souls
  • Lynn Serafinn – Coach; marketer; author of The 7 Graces of Marketing and The Garden of the Soul
  • Wayne Kealohi Powell - holistic health educator, speaker, minister, author
  • Dr Jude Currivan - cosmologist, planetary healer, author, futurist
  • Asia Voight – intuitive counsellor, animal communicator, teacher, author
  • Barbara Meiklejohn-Free – shaman, author, custodian of ancestral wisdoms
  • Lorraine Recchia - angel communicator, angel reader, television host
  • Eva-Maria Mora - medical intuitive, author, founder Quantum Angel Healing
  • Susie Anthony - spiritual mentor, super-luminal guide channeler
  • E.Dee Conrad – channeler, bestselling author of A New Dawn Awaits
  • Celia Fenn – Channel for Archangel Michael, spiritual facilitator, writer, speaker

This special 3-Day telesummit is Gaetano’s FR*EE gift to you,

to celebrate the launch of his book, which is coming

Tuesday March 20, 2012.

FREE GIFTS TOO!

When you buy Gaetano’s book on Tuesday March 20, 2012, Gaetano would like to give you the MP3 downloads from the “Accessing Higher Dimensions Telesummit” PLUS an invitation to attend a special 1-hour “Inner Child Meditation” led by Gaetano in April.

AND… you’ll also receive a complete library of beautiful personal development gifts from authors, speakers, coaches and other enlightened professionals from around the globe including one from me:

‘Secret Garden of the Soul’
A Selection of Poems
To Move Hearts, Minds and Souls

To claim your FREE pass to the

Accessing Higher Dimensions Telesummit

and read about the fre*e gifts, go to:

http://www.gaetanovivoblog.com/book-launch/pages/pre-launch.html

Thanks for reading! As usual, please feel free to share your comments and thoughts below. I love reading your feedback.

AND… be sure to follow Gaetano tomorrow when the next stop on the Virtual Blog Tour is Kate Beddow, who will be interviewing Gaetano on his inspiration, working with your inner child and reiki. To visit that “stop” on the tour, go to Kate Beddow’s Growing Spirit.