Salute to all the Charlies

pen and sword 2The recent horrible events in France highlight how fear of free thought can drive some to violence.  We have
been fortunate in these United States to have the First Amendment on the books protecting the right to free speech.  Granted, writers have had to take to the courts from time to time to preserve that right, redefine it to meet a modern world, but it still shines its light across America and the world.

This is not the case in other parts of the world.  The Guardian article reads, “Nine hundred writers around the world were harassed, imprisoned, murdered or “disappeared” last year, according to PEN International…(1)  For a list of Freedom of Speech by Country see the Wikipedia link below. (2)

I believe that fear leads to violence. (3)  Writers often raise what are to some, uncomfortable questions, uncomfortable truths, provoking the uncomfortable truth that a closely held belief is laughable to some, untrue to others.  The unstable and insecure cannot take the hit to their esteem, so they lash out often violently.

I’ve always believe that old saw, “the pen is mightier than the sword”.  It does not mean there won’t be casualties, but I have to believe that writers the world over will pick up their pens on a daily basis and continue the volley of words, even when faced with guns.

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(1) The Guardian, US Edition  http://www.theguardian.com/books/2014/nov/10/authors-yann-martel-persecuted-pen-international

(2) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Freedom_of_speech_by_country

(3) Fear begets violence: http://projectlove.me/how-does-fear-create-violence/

Do You Do New Year’s Resolutions?

Although I celebrate New Year’s Eve and toast the New Year, I actually begin my celebration on IMG_7284Solstice – Darkest Night.

That’s when I light candles in each room and on my small altar.  It is also when I choose my One Word – that one word that will inform my intentions for the year.  My 2015 One Word is:  TransForm.  Below is my mini poster for fridge, desk and wallet

one word TransForm 1Solstice is also when I consider and pen my intentions (not resolutions) for the lengthening of days that lead to Spring and earth’s rebirth. I’m not going to begin them all on day one, but slowing work my way month by month through the 25 items on my 2015 Intention’s ToDo List.

  1. I intend to stock my Etsy Store this year.  So when an artist friend in Sacramento challenged me to join in the 30 paintings in 30 days January Challenge,  I’ll finally stock my Etsy on-line store this year.
  2. I intend to stick to my morning pages (read Julia Cameron’s Artist’s Way). I’ve been diligently doing since Solstice.
  3. I intend to keep up my Blog more consistently than I have this past year.  With this post being my first of 2015, I plan on posting at least 2 if not 3 days a week.

More to come – Happy 2015 y’all.

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