churches and spiritual places

Challenge Eighty Seven

Today’s challenge is to find a place where you can relax, let go, and be vulnerable.

So this idea came about because I passed the on-campus chapel this evening, and I decided to pop in. I just wanted to sit in the sanctuary, because it is very peaceful to me. During this time, I realized that I had been expecting too much of myself, that I was aiming for perfection rather than something realistic.

I want you to find somewhere that you can let everything go, ignore all of your to do lists, let yourself (or make yourself) stop worrying about something you did 5 years ago, and just be in the moment. Check in with yourself. I realized that I have been aiming for perfection, that I’ve been expecting too much from myself.

So find your place. Maybe it’s somewhere religious or spiritual (church, synagogue, temple, etc.), maybe it is somewhere in nature (hiking trail no one knows about, a hidden corner of the beach), or somewhere in your city that you love (or just live in).

It doesn’t matter where. It just needs to be somewhere that you can leave your stresses, doubts, and to do lists at the door.

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Séance

A séance /ˈseɪ.ɑːns/ or seance is an attempt to communicate with spirits. The word “séance” comes from the French word for “seat,” “session” or “sitting,” from the Old French “seoir,” “to sit.” In French, the word’s meaning is quite general: one may, for example, speak of “une séance de cinéma” (“a movie session”). In English, however, the word came to be used specifically for a meeting of people who are gathered to receive messages from spirits or to listen to a spirit medium discourse with or relay messages from spirits; many people, including skeptics and non-believers, treat it as a form of entertainment. In modern English usage, participants need not be seated while engaged in a séance. One of the earliest books on the subject of communication amongst deceased persons was Communitation With the Other Side by George, First Baron Lyttelton, published in England in 1760. Among the notable spirits quoted in this volume are Peter the Great, Pericles, a “North-American Savage,” William Penn, and Christina, Queen of Sweden. The popularity of séances grew dramatically with the founding of the religion of Spiritualism in the mid-nineteenth century. Perhaps the best-known series of séances conducted at that time were those of Mary Todd Lincoln who, grieving the loss of her son, organized Spiritualist séances in the White House, which were attended by her husband, President Abraham Lincoln, and other prominent members of society. The 1887 Seybert Commission report marred the credibility of Spiritualism at the height of its popularity by publishing exposures of fraud and showmanship among secular séance leaders. Modern séances continue to be a part of the religious services of Spiritualist, Spiritist, and Espiritismo churches today, where a greater emphasis is placed on spiritual values versus showmanship. x

Church is not the place you go to fulfill your spiritual needs. Church is not the grocery store for the things on your religion list. Church is not a club where you pay membership dues in order to get goods and services (e.g. the style of music you like, preaching that makes you feel better, social interaction with people who are similar to you). 

Church is the body of Christ. The building houses a community of people who are the body of Christ in the world and for the world. It’s not about you and what you want to get out of it. Church equips and nurtures disciples, yes. But not for their own sake.

You don’t go to church. You are the church. Act like it.

Horoscope for July 11th, 2016
  • Aries: You might look around your house and think of some new and exciting ways to spruce it up a little. Perhaps some new paint, wallpaper, or carpet, or even a small art object could make a big difference. You may want to try it. A romantic partner could spend a lot of time working on this with you and it might well bring you closer together. Have fun!
  • Taurus: A party or meeting of some kind could occur nearby. You might decide to go. You could feel like you have one foot in this world and one in another. The floodgates of intense communication could open between you and a close friend or love partner. A tight spiritual bond exists between you, and you'll really feel the effects of it now. It will almost be like you can read each other's minds!
  • Gemini: This is a great day to develop any latent talents you've wanted to explore, particularly those involving the arts. You might want to try working with friends who have the same talent. This could not only lead to some good advice but also bring you two closer. However, this isn't a good day to deal with practical paperwork, so let that sort of thing go for a little while.
  • Cancer: Today you might feel especially artistic, particularly regarding the visual arts. A lot of exalted ideas could come your way, perhaps inspired by the masters of the past. This is a great day to attend a concert or play or stroll through a gallery. Friends who share your interest might want to accompany you, so ask. Take time to write down your thoughts since you'll want to remember them. Enjoy!
  • Leo: You're a deep thinker by nature, and today your mind may not be in this world. Books on psychology and metaphysics could be appealing. Churches, meditation centers, and other places with a spiritual orientation could seem especially attractive. You might attend a program or workshop there, but mostly you'll just want to be alone with your thoughts. Write down any insights, as you'll want to remember them later.
  • Virgo: Group events taking place at churches, meditation centers, and other places with a spiritual orientation could draw you near. You might want to attend a service or program at one of them. Don't be surprised if some profound insights come to you that shed some light on a current situation you might be dealing with. Write them down or you might forget them later.
  • Libra: It's likely that the previous few days have been especially hectic. Today you're apt to entertain a few daydreams about getting away from it all. Perhaps there's another field that you've wanted to pursue. You might actually think seriously about it now. Don't make any plans until you're back in the material world. You might feel too fanciful to be your usual practical self.
  • Scorpio: Today your intellect is likely to be more inclined than usual to explore fields that seem a bit speculative. Ancient spiritual rites, prehistory, or strange stories could be on your mind. You might seek books on these subjects. Usually you tend to be skeptical about such things, but now you want to learn about them. Hang onto your logic and learn what you can! You'll enjoy yourself at the very least!
  • Sagittarius: Some intense dreams could visit you tonight. Keep a notebook and pen by your bedside. It's important you remember them. You'll want to visualize every single detail. In the morning, you might want to reflect on their possible meaning. They could give rise to new knowledge about yourself, a new spiritual revelation, or artistic inspiration. Books could be of particular assistance in understanding what your dreams are telling you.
  • Capricorn: Social events involving the arts or spiritual studies could take place today. New people who share your interests could show up. Love and romance could take on a fairytale aura. You might view current and potential love partners through rose-colored glasses, seeing only their endearing traits. This is fine, and you should enjoy it as long as you don't get caught up in unrealistic expectations. They're human just like everyone else.
  • Aquarius: Daydreams about your future could take up a lot of time today. Inspiration could give a real boost to projects you've been working on. These might involve artistic endeavors or perhaps some sprucing up that you want to do around the house and yard. Working together might bring you closer to friends, family members, and possibly a love partner. Conversations with them could take an unexpected turn.
  • Pisces: You might find yourself daydreaming about faraway places, perhaps toying with the idea of taking a long vacation by air to a place you've always wanted to visit. This isn't a good day to make definite plans. You aren't likely to be inclined to do that now anyway. Love matters may take an unexpected turn, as a spiritual bond seems to be forming between you and a potential romantic partner.
race for the sun

lokiwordsmith

He had to give it to his mother and the army of servants that she commanded. Even on such short notice they had been able to pull off perfection to this degree. It had been a busy few months getting everything ready, making sure every detail was checked and double checked. He was surprised she’d had the time at all to see this on top of ruling a country.

God knew his father would have been useless at this. Distracted by his work and experiments, it was a surprise he was even tolerated as the Consort-King. Tony was excused for his distractions as Prince, he wasn’t even supposed to be the heir to the throne, so they’d sent him off to school, to university. Though, this arrangement, Tony’s impending marriage, had been his father’s idea. And they had prospered for the promised alliance.

Of course, the engagement hadn’t been meant for Tony originally. No, it had been meant for the first born daughter of their Queen. Except, there hadn’t been a daughter after Tony was born. Oh, there had been pregnancies. All of them ending in miscarriage or still borns.

Until, at fifteen, Tony had come home during a break after the last stillbirth. He’d snuck into a closed court session where only the inner court had been called upon. And he’d watched his father cut them all down at the knees. Telling them enough was enough and he wouldn’t continue to put his wife - their Queen - through the pain and emotional turmoil of another pregnancy.

They had Tony. Fix the laws. They could make due with him.

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