Miscellany of thoughts

It has been a strange week with lots of things to think about so here are a few of my thoughts from this week.

I have written about respect before but a brief thought here about it. I was watching a television programme this week when the subject of respect came up and how important it was to respect yourself and each other whatever age, creed or colour you were. No-one should feel superior to someone else because of colour, age or creed. Cheddar Man was brown as were most of our ancient predecessors. We all come from the same source.

Listening to my body has been important this week. Since I moved house I have ignored the listening and just got on with things, housework, gardening and eating junk food. This week my body rebelled so I had to listen. Too much pain and an upset stomach made me realise that I cannot go on as I have been doing. So hand some things over to others and look at my diet, cutting out the junk food.

Other thoughts have been about courtesy which is again about respect. If you are asked if you are coming to an event via email it is courtesy to respond. even if you are not coming. I run a group with about twelve people as members and after my last email about the next meeting I had five replies. Some of course will turn up even if they have not replied. I find this not good at all. After all I need to know how many teas to book!

But now I am listening to my body and going to make a decaf green tea and have a plain biscuit with it!

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Friendship

I don’t know what happened but all my writing just disappeared so I shall start again.

If you use social media then you may have hundreds or even thousands of friends but are these really friends? At one time you could organise your social media friends into groups so I had a craft group, a healing group and a group of close friends. I’m not sure you can do this nowadays. But what is friendship?

I like this definition I found; ‘Friendship for most people is a combination of affection, loyalty, love, respect, and trust. The general traits of a friendship include similar interests, mutual respect and an attachment to each other, and in order to experience friendship, you need to have true friends.’ This definition represents how I feel about friendship.

For me it is important to be able to have deep discussion with my friends, to share with them my thoughts and feelings, to cry with them and laugh with them. I want to help them to achieve their goals and of course this all works vice versa.

So what about the other ‘friends’? Some of these might be people I see regularly but do not have that deep connection with them, others are just acquaintances. A true friendship can last many years even if you don’t see each other very often. I have friends I meet occasionally sometimes after many years but our conversations carry on as if we had only seen each other the previous day.

So I am grateful for those true friends that I have, with whom I share my feelings and thoughts on a regular basis. They have supported me and still do, through times of stress and upheaval. I hope I do the same for them.

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Communications and our elders

Technology has made us a different people. We text on the phone and do not communicate via our voices any more. I much prefer to talk on the phone or face to face. That way we can communicate our emotions and use our body to communicate our feelings as well. Texts are so impersonal. Those who prefer to text have their reasons as one woman said this morning on the TV, she did not have to know whether the person she was sending a text was ill or not. I found this statement rather sad.

This brings me to the way we communicate and treat our elders. In days gone by and still happening in other cultures, our elders were respected and allowed to use their talents even though they might be very old. The youngest grandchildren talked to their elders and respected them but also loved them and were loved in return. The elders played a part in family life and also community life.

There are many in the older generation who cannot or will not use mobile phones. They like to see their family and talk to them face to face. Here in the UK, at a certain age you retire from working life and then what? If you do not have a hobby or some kind of interest then you can stagnate and fall into depression. But what happens when you find your home too large to look after? So many older people are now in retirement homes which are generally very small and have little space for hobbies. Of course these places are secure and have emergency pull cords so the rest of the family feel that the older members are safe and so do not visit or worry about them so much. But the joy of sharing with family members is no longer there and for me that is an important part of life. Sharing with friends too is good and also important but as older people are we the same as the elders of other cultures? Do we get the respect that we deserve and the treatment by others that we deserve?

Many are happy in their retirement homes and enjoy the activities that go on there but others like me are frustrated by the lack of space to enjoy my hobbies and the lack of encouragement by others who think I am a bit weird! Should we be more aware of how different we, as the elders, all are? We all have something to offer to those younger than us but often this is pushed away. It is so easy and I have seen it done, to push Granny into a retirement bungalow and then forget about her. What has happened to our feelings of family and our love for them?

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Alone or lonely?

This week there have been several articles in the national newspapers about dealing with loneliness. But there is a difference between being alone and being lonely. I have been with lots of other people, friends supposedly, yet I have felt quite lonely in that crowd. I live alone and have done for over twenty years now but I am alone not necessarily lonely. I do get out at times, not so much in the winter but in the summer I get out as much as I can despite the difficulties of getting on buses and moving around.

I enjoy being alone a lot of the time but there can be days when I would really love to chat to somebody, not on the phone or email, or texts but sitting together and chatting. If you are with someone then there is a difference in the way you react to the words that are said and you can read about groups of people having brain storming sessions where ideas are bounced around between all those taking part. Conversation works in the same way. Texts do not have the same reactions because of the time lag, likewise with emails. Phone calls can be good for conversation and for bouncing ideas around but they are not quite the same as being with someone. So if I ask for this type of contact does it mean I am lonely? No, it does not; it means I want to discuss something with someone face to face so that my thoughts can be made clearer or muddier as the case may be.

Older people living on their own can be lonely but just putting them together with others for a coffee morning is not always the answer. I have been to these kind of coffee mornings and barely spoken to anyone else. Meaningful conversation relies on having things in common to talk about. Many older people, those much older that I am, often spend a lot of time watching television and they can then talk about it with others at coffee mornings and when out shopping. I read and don’t really watch the television apart from specific programmes. This can make me seem boring when with older people who do watch the TV. Loneliness is not easily dealt with and there are organisations around that try to help. However just because you are over seventy doesn’t mean you will get on with all those others of the same age. We are all different and we all have different thoughts and ideas. Being a druid sets me apart from many people my age as my perspective on life is so different from theirs.

What are your thoughts on being alone and loneliness?

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Questions and more questions

I had thought about the theme of the ancestors for my blog but this morning I changed my mind as I felt I had more important things to say. Most of this blog will be questions, some of which you might like to think about, some of which you might like to answer. So my first question is this;

How have we managed to let our world get in such a mess? Not an easy question to answer in a few words but thought provoking.

Why do we leave things too late to get them changed? It is only when we see the actions done on our behalf that we think about their effects and that we should not have allowed this to happen.

Why don’t people register to vote and then vote so that things can be changed?

Why do we listen to the rubbish spouted by the mainstream media and believe it is true? Are we unable to think for ourselves?

How have we allowed greed to take over our world? I saw a child’s tee shirt last year. On the front was printed the following words -‘I scream, I stamp, I get.’ I saw something similar this morning ‘ I like, I want, I asked Grandma, I got’. I don’t need to say any more as I am sure you will see what I am getting at.

Some of you might think I am a grumpy old woman but I hate the way our world has changed. We buy things and throw them away after a short while or if they go wrong. We used to repair items not throw them away. Why don’t we change our shopping habits so that there is less rubbish to dispose of? Some countries are good at this.

Why do we allow companies to bottle water which should be free?

Why do we allow long pipelines across land which is not ours and on which the pipelines might leak (which they often do)?

Why do we use man made drugs when natural medicines are better for us and cost less?

I could go on but I am sure I have given you food for thought. I hope so.

Yesterday I found a leaf on the ground. I brought it home to press and took a photo at home. The colours are beautiful and remind me that as humans we are all different colours and should mingle together like the colours on the leaf.

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Respect or not as the case may be

Respect seems to be one thing that is missing in the world at the moment. It is not just young people who have no idea what respect means but often older people who have forgotten. So what is respect? There are several definitions which vary slightly but the main two definitions are as follows;

due regard for the wishes, feelings and rights of others;

a feeling of admiration for someone for their abilities or achievements.

For me it is something slightly different but I think that words do change their meanings as the years go by. Sometimes it feels the same as courtesy, another thing long forgotten. This means holding doors for the next person or helping others with heavy bags, or allowing someone else to get on the bus before me because they may be older or have heavy bags. To me it also means that I respect the religions of others, their food choices, their clothes, and so on.

At the moment our world seems to be full of people finding fault with others because they don’t think the same way or dress in a way that is thought to be the right way.OK  of course there are some things that would have no respect such as bullying but I am thinking of things in general. It is good to look at ourselves and see how others perceive us. Do we come over as good, kind, tolerant, gentle and compassionate or are we seen as bullies, dominant, nasty and so on. How do you see yourself? Do have the respect of others and do you give respect to others? I think there is a lot of food for thought here.

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Ripples

Have you ever thrown a stone into a pond or river and watched the ripples spread out? They go on for ages and ages. I find watching these is a wonderful way to think about how we live our lives. Over the last couple of weeks here in the UK large stones have been thrown into the pond and the ripples are still moving along reaching all parts of the world.

These ripples affect everything they come into contact with and we do not know what that effect will be. We need to have faith that all will be well, that whatever the effect of the ripples it will be for our own good. But this is hard to do. The future is uncertain and we need to have trust and faith. We need to come together, to forgive others for their harsh words and to move forward in peace. But those who have been badly hurt by the throwing of the stone are finding it hard to forgive. But forgiveness is important. If we don’t forgive and move on, then hate and anger fester inside us making us ill and also making us hurt others who we see as enemies.

Those of us who work at higher levels of  consciousness often see what is not seen by others We know that the way forward is not via hate and anger but is by love, peace and understanding. We need to be united and work together to help others to understand this. Anger and revenge is not the way to go. Time out in nature can help us to reflect on the ripples that go out after the throwing of the stone and how they interact with other ripples thrown by other stones. Take time now to contemplate on your actions and your way forward.

(the only good photo I could find with lots of ripples is this one.)

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