I am embarking on a new adventure to explore various spiritual paths and beliefs, starting with my own notions. It will start with blog posts and will likely involve interviews with a wide range of seekers and thinkers. There could be a book or two. There could be a documentary.
Let’s see where this path takes us.
Spiritual Free Agent
My mother fled the farm and the Catholic church when she was 18. She raised us to be independent thinkers and make our own choices choice about religious or spiritual beliefs or lack thereof.
When asked, I will often give the following smart-ass answer:
I am an Existential Christ-ian Taoist Shaman with a Buddhist Interpretation. Or perhaps simply a Free Agent.
I say it mostly as a joke, though it begins to hint at a very broad range of enquiry and experiences.
A Pattern Emerges in the Rearview Mirror
Although I seldom had a plan, there are a few interesting patterns visible when look at the ground I have covered in my life:
Watched the interviews of Joseph Campbell by Bill Moyes on The Masks of God. I have the books in the locker.
Visited the headquarters of the Theosophical Society in Adyar, India where they have manuscripts from many different spiritual traditions and a tree descended from the Bodhi tree where Siddhartha achieved Enlightenment and became the Buddha.
Attended and done video projects with Unity churches, United Churches, and Anglican Churches.
Did projects with the Masons and Shriners.
Shot video of a Muslim marriage ceremony and related celebrations.
Read the Koran, The Book of Morman, the Tao Te Ching, the Tao of Pooh, some of the Old Testament, different translations of the New Testament, and tried reading the Bhagavad Gita. Not a master of any of the texts.
Used a passage from Kahlil Gibran’s The Prophet in my first wedding. There was a line about “Let there be space in your togetherness.” Indeed, there has been a few partners and over 5,000 Kilometres between us. We are still connected, though.
Been willing to try to understand the beliefs of any woman I was involved with.
Spent time in Hong Kong, Singapore, and Malasia.
Have some Buddhist connections.
Spent a considerable amount of time with a Native artist shaman.
Have participated in and witnessed various Native ceremonies.
Am in awe of the natural world. As Albert Einstein said: “Not only is the universe stranger than we think, it is stranger than we can think.”
Always a guest observer, never a member.
The Path Ahead
There will be blogs and articles on topics that include things like:
New Thought and the Unity Movement
Why Christ-ian and not Christian
Prophets and Enlightened Masters
Why Taoism Resonates With Me
First Nation Wisdom On Multiple Levels
We Are All Related
Bizarre Interpretations of Jesus Feeds the Five Thousand
Rumi, Kahlil Gibran, William Blake, and other writings.
Wonder of the Cosmos
The Miracle of Life
Why Many Eastern Traditions are Not Religions
The God of Your Understanding
Past Life Experiences
If you are inclined to dogma and fundamentalism, you will probably resist almost everything I will write about.
If you want to explore a range of perspectives, then this could be for you.
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Like many of you, our plans A, B, and C evaporated with the Coronavirus lockdown.
We have to adapt. The meteorite has hit the planet. Many people, families, and businesses will be devastated by the likely global recession. Millions more will die of COVID-19 and its variations. Millions more will be on the streets or succumb to depression and suicide.
The dinosaurs will go extinct, while other life forms will adapt and thrive.
The blessing in all of this is that humanity needs to figure this out and help each other through this.
And some people will survive and thrive with this. Some will succeed by serving and others will succeed through exploitation.
Why We Are In a Position to Help
Bonnie and I have been working to learn skills and acquire tools to help people and businesses.
And we have a natural instinct to help others, even when we need help.
I will give you a recent example. Bonnie got in the car and drove to a grocery store to get groceries for a friend who is shut-in due to the coronavirus.
We are not sure how we are going to put gas in the car or pay for insurance or buy food for ourselves next month. But today we can help.
There is a lot of need right here right now. Many of you are shut in afraid and need a helping hand.
Bonnie and I will do what we can to help. And we can help in a lot of ways.
What We Can Do To Help
People in Isolation
Shopping for the necessities and delivering to your home. We will practice social distancing and safe protocols.
Gardening. We can help put in a Victory Garden which could be a lifesaver for you.
One of our services is to create personal, family, and business story productions.
Now maybe the time before the opportunity passes.
Bonnie and I have a head start on many businesses in terms of being mobile and online.
Here is how we can help:
Transform your presentations from in-person to online with live streaming, social media, and webinars.
Video production. We teach people how to use video with what they have.
Adapt from in-person to online delivery of services through online courses, membership sites, and online delivery of services,
Help with copywriting and marketing to make the needed adjustment.
We have tools and expertise to take the right idea from start to generating hundreds of thousands of dollars to millions of dollars.
Maybe you have the right idea for this time?
Help Us Help You
We are prepared to do any and all of that according to need and means:
We will help individuals who need help on a donation basis. We will help if you can’t afford anything. If you can make a donation, great.
We will help businesses with free advice and resources.
We may also choose to help businesses with a contribution and joint venture agreement.
Contact Greg Dixon at email@example.com to request help.
Help Us Help Others
Here is your opportunity to pay it forward or pay it back.
Make a contribution to help us help others.
Offer services or supplies.
What can you offer to help?
Contact Greg Dixon at firstname.lastname@example.org to offer help.
Join The Team
The need is much greater than what we can do ourselves.
Please let us know if you want to help with your time or expertise.
Contact Greg Dixon at email@example.com to join the team.
One of your first impressions of Vancouver, British Columbia, will be that there is water everywhere. Burrard Inlet to the North, the Fraser River to the South, and False Creek in the middle.
Seawall with paths for bicycles and pedestrians follow the entire waterfront around False Creek.
Two companies operate cute tiny ferries to take people between eight locations around False Creek. Each stop has its own charm.
We bought a day pass and shot photos and video of all eight stops served by AquaBus ferries. Here are the highlights.
Granville Island was an industrial area important during World War II. Today you can get fresh produce, seafood, unique arts and crafts and much more in the Granville Island Market.
Restaurants, Granville Island Brewery, theatres, art galleries, funky shops, and an art school for kids provide a lot to see.
The next stop on our tour is Stamps Landing just West of the Cambie Street Bridge.
In June 1867, Edward Stamp build Vancouver’s first industrial operation, Stamp’s Sawmill.
Today the area features apartments with a fabulous view of the water and boats, Mahoney & Sons Irish Bar and Grill, The Wicklow Public House, and the charming Branas Mediterranean Grill. Eat, drink, and be merry!
Orca whales are a rare sight in False Creek. We caught 4 on camera just West of Stamps Landing.
Kartra is now celebrating it’s One-Year Anniversary.
I was part of the beta program and have been using it for a year.
Here are the top 10 additions to Kartra in the last year:
Calendars: Kartra’s built-in Calendar functionality allows your clients to self-book and reschedule based on your availability, and even sends automated reminders, so no appointment is ever forgotten. And, since Kartra Calendars and Kartra Checkouts are part of the same family, you can charge for your sessions straight from within the Calendar App — ensuring your time is always worth something.
Marketplace: Want to score some extra income on the side? Kartra offers an awesome affiliate marketplace to both FIND affiliates to sell your products AND become one yourself! And if you really love Kartra and want to promote our product…well, we now offer you 40% commission on affiliate sales.
Sell/Share Your Campaigns: If you’re a seasoned marketer and other members could benefit from your expertise, Kartra now allows you to export your funnels and campaigns directly from your account to theirs. This means you can charge for your knowledge and sell your campaigns to other users. Or, if you don’t have time to put in the work, simply buy a campaign from one of your fellow marketers.
BAM: Since Kartra stores your contacts, sends your emails, and sells your products, Kartra Pages knows who your visitors are: their profile details, their tags, the mailing lists they’re subscribed to, etc. Our new BAM (behavioral adaptive marketing) technology allows you to use this profile intelligence to adapt the contents of your page dynamically for each particular visitor, creating the most unique and personalized experience yet.
Date-Based Sequences: The sequence update allows you to trigger a sequence, or a sequence step, based on a specific date and time. This means you can continue to funnel people into your sequence, without worrying about the timing being off. This update is especially powerful for launches, quarterly, semi-annual and annual campaigns. And, if you’ve got some extra time to spare, you can even pre-set holiday campaigns for the whole year, and not have to worry about remembering them.
Kartranaught Training: We know there’s a lot to learn with Kartra. Our new Kartranaut Training Program is designed to train our customers on every setting available inside Kartra — dripped out every week in the order they need to know it to be successful. Each lesson will build on knowledge learned in previous lessons. By the end of this course, you will have total knowledge of the Kartra-verse and what can be done inside it.
Internal Email Notifications: Your internal email notifications are now organized into three distinct categories — leads, affiliates, and team members — so you can quickly shift between the three without any confusion.
Lead segmentation by level of engagement: Thanks to Kartra’s “Level of Engagement” superpower, you can now pinpoint customers by very specific measures of how engaged they are with your marketing and content — and then custom-tailor your offers and messaging according to their level of interest. It’s the surest way to boost the likelihood of sales and increase the loyalty of your current customers!
Membership Progress Tracking To Set Expectations And Reward Activity: Progress bars are a powerful way to visually show your users what they’ve completed, and how much is left. Kartra now allows you to enable the progress tracking, to either force a linear progression for your users to follow, or for less structured programs, allow users to complete courses in any order they choose while still being able to visualize their progress. You can even choose to display a completion badge once a user has finished.
New Heatmap Tool Helps You Uncover What’s Engaging Your Visitors: Kartra’s new heatmap analytics tool lets you see at a glance the percentage of visitors that have stayed on your page for longer than 10 seconds, your visitor’s average time on a page, and (if you have a page that requires a bit of scrolling) you can see the average scroll percentage for all visitors and those who stayed past 10 seconds. To get a more in-depth idea of where on your page people are dropping off, check out the colored heat map bar on the side that shows you the percentage of visitors that viewed that section.
And those are just my 10 favorite, but there have been DOZENS of other additional, smaller upgrades to the platform.
Pretty cool, huh?
But I didn’t just post to TELL you about all the cool things you might have missed over the last year. I want to give you a chance to play around with these features…and for much longer than a few short weeks.
For a VERY LIMITED time, Kartra is having a one-year anniversary sale where they’ll be giving you 6 months of Kartra for the price of 3 — that’s 50% off.
Bonnie and I had missed the memo, “Thou shalt not leave the black tank valve open while living in an RV park.”
All was good for months until one day the toilet would not flush.
Search for “how to unclog an RV toilet.” led to quite a few explanations and remedies. Some were quite amusing and enlightening.
It turns out that leaving the black tank valve open causes all the liquid to run out, leaving the solid materials behind.
Cameras like colonoscopy cameras for RVs revealed that a Great Pyramid of Poo could build up and block the toilet.
Remedies ran from running near-boiling water down the toilet to using tank cleaning chemicals not available in Canada.
I reasoned that hooking up a water hose to the ‘enema’ connector may erode the pyramid enough to get things to flow again.
So Bonnie was inside on the phone watching as I turned on the water.
“Stop! Stop! She cried.” as the sludge overflowed into the grey tank and started coming up the sink.
We were in a stinky mess. Couldn’t use water for anything. Possibly may need to take the unit into a shop to get the tanks cleared and possibly replaced. The costs could be in the thousands of dollars.
At least there were toilets and showers at the RV Park.
The Great Wall
It was evident that what we had was more like a Great Wall at the tank outlet than a Great Pyramid.
Various remedies came to mind. One was to move the RV next to the sewage dump at the RV park and poke something in from the outside.
I had visions of creating a YouTube-worthy Fountain of Poo in front of the office and lounge, like Robin Williams in the movie RV (no, they did not get their deposit back on the rented RV).
A friend offered to loan us some plumbing snakes and we went to Canadian Tire to see if they had something that would at least direct the geyser downward towards the drain.
They had the perfect attachment, the Rhino Blaster.
The device is intended to go between the tank outlet and the sewer hose, with a connector to attach a hose and flush water into the tank from the outside.
It turns out that the snake with a 1/4 “ flat metal ribbon and a scraper at one end would fit perfectly through the water valve.
There is a rubber seal to help avoid backwash that I kept open with a straw to allow me the feed the snake ribbon back through the valve.
I then connected the Rhino Blaster to the tank outlet and the sewer hose to the other end.
In the very least there would not be a fountain of poo and we could try the operation where we were sitting and not in front of the office and lounge.
You do not want to be witnessing a fountain of poo while sitting in the hot tub!
It took about 5 minutes of working the snake to get a tiny flow of fluid to come out.
There is Hope After All!
Bonnie was dumping boiling water down the toilet to help loosen up the sludge. Many of the online remedies recommended this.
It took close to an hour of working the snake to get enough of the sludge out to risk running more water down the toilet and sinks.
We then carefully filled up the tanks and flushed out repeatedly until we got good flow and nearly clear fluids.
We will repeat every day for a while, then go to the usual practice of draining and flushing the tanks every 5 days or so.
It is safe enough to leave the grey tank open all of the time, though an occasional flush would be good.
A few of the videos we watched described an alternative to dropping treatment pouches (bog candies) down the hole using variations of the Geo Method. One used Borax and Dawn dish soap with a chemical explanation why the Borax was able to break down sludge and oxegenate the layer where anaerobic bacteria generate the stinky gases.
Makes sense to me.
Here is a good video that adds the use of water softener to the Geo Method.