The official blog of Susan Landis-Steward, writer of whatever she likes, and co-founder of Puddletown Publishing Group

Posts tagged ‘Desmond Tutu’

Happy New Year 2010

Okay, I’m a day late. And, after TWO trips to the mall today with the Divine Miss M (aka the Malliwog), a dollar or two short. But I do plan to do more blogging this year. For starters, I just want to post something I found on someone else’s blog. It’s by Dr. Frank Lipman.

20 New Year Resolutions

  1. More Real Food, Less “Food-like Substances”,
  2. More Fruit and Vegetables, Less Sugar, Wheat and Corn
  3. More Organic, Less Toxic
  4. More Chewing, Less Eating
  5. More Water, Less Soda
  6. More Recycling, Less Waste
  7. More Walking, Less Driving
  8. More Exercising, Less Watching TV
  9. More Outdoors, Less Indoors
  10. More Sleep, Less Worry
  11. More Calm, Less Chaos
  12. More Being, Less Doing
  13. More Consciousness, Less Ignorance
  14. More Smiles, Less Anger
  15. More Love, Less Hatred
  16. More Play, Less Serious
  17. More Letting Go, Less Holding On
  18. More Forgiving, Less Blaming
  19. More Generosity, Less Greed
  20. More Ubuntu, Less Me!

Ubuntu means what makes us human is the humanity we show each other. It is a Xhosa (South African) word and philosophy emphasizing community, sharing and generosity.

As Archbishop Desmond Tutu says
“Ubuntu is about the essence of being human, it is part of the gift that Africa will give the world. It embraces hospitality, caring about others, being able to go the extra mile for the sake of others. We believe that a person is a person through another person, that my humanity is caught up, bound up, inextricably, with yours. When I dehumanize you, I inexorably dehumanize myself. The solitary human being is a contradiction in terms and therefore you seek to work for the common good because your humanity comes into its own in belonging”.

Let 2010 be the year of UBUNTU.”

So, just as “TOWANDA” was the word of the decade for me back in the 90s, UBUNTU is my new personal slogan. (Don’t we all need those?)

This year I’m planning to do a lot of reading and reflecting on my own life and the way it impacts others.  I’m sort of in a family mode as my older daughters prepare to welcome new children into their families, and my youngest prepares for her great adventure: joining the circus.

I’m using several tools for the journey. Naturally I have journals, sketchbooks, watercolors, pens, and colored pencils. I have some nifty rubber stamps I won from my friend, Mar. I have several books stacked by my desk and several more recommendations courtesy of my Facebook friends.  I have a great therapist for exploring the weird parts, and a great partner for exploring the fun parts (although she might think those ARE the weird parts!) I have a deepening sense of who I am theologically, ethically, and in relationship. I’m ready.

For a framework, I’m using Carolyn Myss’ Sacred Contracts and her archetype cards. I’m not a big believer in divination, but I’m a huge fan of intuition and I’ve found that images are great triggers for my intuition. I will most likely share some, but not all, of what I discover in this blog. Some will remain just fodder for my journals.

The cards are laid out much like an astrological chart, in three levels. The first level contains the archetypes at work throughout your lifetime. Myss calls these the chronos archetypes. The second level is archetypes at work in the current situation (the kairos archetypes and, in this case, the coming year), and the third level are the cosmic archetypes, those chosen by the divine. It’s all sort of complicated but also quite intuitive. (Even if I do disagree with her use of the words Chronos and Kairos, two words I understand from a Christian theological perspective and have a hard time grasping the alternative meanings she has ascribed to them.)

So, in January (ain’t it convenient that a year has twelve months and a chart has twelve segments?) I will be exploring in depth the first house of the ego and the personality. My chronos archetype is the Addict, kairos archetype is the Scribe, and the cosmic archetype is the Alchemist. I can already see that this is going to be interesting.

Addict? Oh, my yes. And lots to address there. Scribe? Not in the writer sense, but in the recorder sense. Since I’d decided that a journal, blog, sketchbook, and lots of jottings and musings were in order on this journey long before I found a framework, I think it’s serendipitous that the scribe appeared where it did.

Alchemist? Ah! Transformation. My goal in all of this, after all. Yes, I see some interesting days ahead for me.  And, since you won’t be seeing the journal, I’ll just let you know that the particular rubber stamps I won off my friend, Mar, are absolutely perfect icons for some of the work I’ll be doing.

Back to the cards. Once you do the chart, you start looking at the interactions. And, wow, do they interact. My intuition is on overdrive just thinking about it. Should be an interesting year.

But right now I’m headed for bed. I’m worship associate tomorrow and the Desmond Tutu quote above is part of what I’m reading. That and a part of MLK’s Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech. Then we’re going to set the place on fire (for you UUs out there, it’s fire communion).

Ubuntu!

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