This blog updates at least weekly on any of the days below with the topics as follows:
On a Monday-Maniac Mondays = All Things that are All Things! Generally thoughts, ideas or tools we think can be useful to the personal or professional life.
On a Thursday-Tumultuous Thursdays = All Things Metaphysical
On a Friday-Funtastic Fridays = All Things Fun! (cartoons, stories about the Purple Elephant and the Little mouse...)
Studious Saturdays = All Things about the craft of fiction writing. Also we will give you little snippets about how our fantasy fiction novel in progress is going. Sometimes this can be told as a cartoon. We will be doing nanowrimo this year as well.

Also our Advent calendar will be happening this year as usual! Look for an interesting and new format!

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Thursday, 31 December 2009

Advent Calendar:7th Day of Christmas and Old Year's Day-Reflections!

Meady’s Musings Production apologizes for not keeping up with the calendar and the twelve days of Christmas from the 4th to 6th days of Christmas. However she (Meady herself), the Purple Elephant and even the little mouse have all caught some great big colds! The Purple Elephant believes we got it from Rudolph’s red, runny nose as we were nursing sick reindeer while Santa used our donkey with cart instead this year!

However with a whole house full of sick it’s hard to figure out who should nurse who? And so we were all very unclear as to what to do! Also in an attempt to keep bread on the table for all at the house Meady still had to go out to her full time job so it was near impossible to put up gifts of blog posts. Most of the house guests will be gone by the end of today as the 7th Day of Christmas and Old Year’s Day is here…and all are excited to usher in the New Year!

So, on the today calendar we have made it here, to give you a gift of a blog post olé! As we present…Reflections!

Here is how it will be presented on all three blogs our Reflections on 2009:

-On Meady’s Musings: Our favourite blog posts we shared with you or things we did!

-On UCP: Some of our most profoundly divine and moving moments in UCP!

-On Books and Films Corner: We recall some of the movies we enjoyed this year!



OUR FAVOURITE BLOG POSTS OR THINGS FOR 2009!


Before I look at the details in general I'd like to say this was the year new life was breathed into my Meady's Musings logo and my Purple Elephant and the little mouse really came to life thanks to my friend Adriana Ochoa! :)


JAN: In Jan things manifested as we followed our heart and we had Gone Gardening!

FEB:In Feb we took a jab at our reincarnation series again and heard of the works of Dr. Brian Weiss. Be sure we will be taking further jabs at that series in 2010!

MAR:
We asked American President Obama How Does His Garden Grow? Enjoyed the beauty of our Sunflowers aka Suraj Mukhi and discovered our (Primary) Theme Song!

APR:
We asked To Be a Leader? as we rolled over in laughter at the antics of Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez and his wing men Evo Morales and Daniel Ortega as they attended the Summit of the Americas here on our island under the watchful eye of US President Barack Obama who was all smiles and charm as he received arepas...ahem...we mean that infamous book from Chavez!:) As we asked that question we discovered we not only had a theme song but we had two! So from then on one would be called our primary theme song and the other sub-primary theme song! We also had those lovely refinery walks and saw a butterfly!:)

MAY: We volunteered at the Red Earth Eco-Arts Festival 2009 and made some new friends...

JUN-JUL:We left on a jet plane and toured a certain cavernous place i.e. the Grand Canyon via Route 66, engaged in UCP in New Mexico and walked the Santa Fe Trail of the old wild west! On the whole we also hung out in the American Southlands...confederacy anyone? We didn't blog much though as even on return we had this flu perhaps not swine but nasty all the same! Here are some more pics from that trip to make up for it though!







AUG:We explored Parallel Lives and Parallel Worlds and be sure to hear more about that in 2010 as we continue to follow, contemplate and discuss the works of Dr. Kaku and others!

SEP: Some say we may have slipped off into a parallel world during this month but we didn't blog here then! ;)

OCT: In October despite the busyness of the Diwali festivities we took part in Blog Action Day 2009 and wondered about our Carbon Footprint or was it about The Existence of Bigfoot instead!? We also saluted the beautiful Sarah Maria's book!

NOV: In Nov all month long we tried to be semi-raw again but realised if we couldnt do that we could be Vegan for Sure! We may have lost some weight and for sure gotten a bit healthier especially with use of our steppy thingy!Expect us to try a vegan diet again soon in the New Year!:)

DEC: Christmas was here and it again was time for our Advent calendar which takes us back to here! Ole! Bro Greg said the prayers and Adriana helped my animals don their Santa hats and it has been Christmas fun all the way! :)

Sunday, 27 December 2009

Advent Calendar:27 Dec 09-The Third Day of Christmas: These are Some of My Favourite Things!


copyright Meady's Musings Production 2009

Most of the animals and people are now dispersing from Meady's Musings Production house catching their respective flights, donkey backs or simply on foot like the monkeys heading back to the streets...hopefully reformed especially after witnessing miracles! The purple elephant and little mouse have helped them secure jobs in some tea shops and other places...One of them learnt to be a barber while in the house (trained by a bear). And one decided to go off with the shepherds to help them herd their sheep! So the house is getting quieter and quieter...the baby that was born is still with us but word has come through the shepherds that they too should be on the move soon since people are looking for them!

So things are winding down here on the calendar but we are still celebrating the twelve days of Christmas as promised! So on today the third day of Christmas I share with you three of my favourite things that I've discovered this year relevant to each blog...

-On Meady's Musings:Three things to eat!
-On UCP:Three of my favourite carols/bhajans/chants!
-On Books and Films Corner:Two Books and a Movie!


THREE THINGS TO EAT!



1. Awfully Chocolate!
- I found out about this as I got it for a birthday present yesterday! It was bought in Shanghai but seems that the store originates from Singapore! And it was awfully nice! You see I love dark chocolate...the one I got is a tin of tartlets it seems...see pic below...What I also like about the chain when I checked out their site is how they originated...nice story...or innovation! Check their site out on http://www.awfullychocolate.com

copyright Meady's Musings Production 2009


2. Lady Grey Tea
- Now I'm yet to taste a cup but some friends have and say it is simply delicious...I was just pleased to find out about its existence this year! I had always heard of Earl Grey tea but never knew there was a lady to it! :) But with hints of orange in there some how I know I'll love it! Might have to wait for March to get a cup out of the UK but know it will be well worth it! :)


3.Vegan Foods!- And one of the last but not least important lovely things I learnt to eat this year are vegan foods! It was great to find out how easily I could live on them...and plan to be vegan again in Jan 2010 I think! :)

Saturday, 26 December 2009

Advent Calendar:26 Dec 09-My Birthday and the 2nd Day of Christmas!

So it's my birthday! What I adore about the Purple Elephant and the little mouse is although they were so busy with all the Christmas celebs and preps and our umpteen house guests of all shapes, sizes and species they found the time to bake me a cake and get me an additional separate birthday gift other than my Christmas one! :) They are such caring animals and friends...a girl can wish for none better than those two! :)

Today is also the 2nd day of Christmas according to the old Twelve Days of Christmas traditions and we will be keeping it up on the Advent calendar. So we won't close until the Epiphany on Wed 6 Jan 2010 when we will celebrate with the Magi for the last time this Advent season! :) And it's been a busy one for me so I've not been able to dance with them as much as I'd have liked this year but I will try at least on that day!

However seeing as it is my birthday and I'm at that landmark that I personally consider to be middle of the road (since average life expectancy is 70)...tethering at the top of the hill...trying for it to not to go all down hill too fast at 35! Aah that thing call time...but it's fictional anyway just ask my metaphysics mentioning friends! :)

But the Purple elephant and the little mouse insisted that I relax today...so I'm going to try...but if I had left my calendar bare...they shan't have existed today you see...since they are imaginary...Oh dear! So I had to blog even today so you could see them appear! :)

So today on the calendar I'm not going to be as presumptuous as on last year's calendar and assume you want the gift of me on my birthday! Although to me that is what it is when you mark your birthday and friends cheer...it is that they are celebrating your entry into existence on the earthly plane and so like on that day you are the gift to them...no?

But instead this year I will just with you share some of the things that define me or are important to me...since I should be relaxing I might mostly reference blogs I've written in the past but with a new slant...so here is how we'll have it!:)

-On Meady's Musings: I will recall my primary and sub-primary theme songs! :)
-On UCP: I will recall my relationship with Shiv and pinch my cute Ishq Devata-Ganesh!
-On Books and Films Corner: I will list my top ten fav books ever and show some clips of some of fav films too! :)

So here it is Happy Happy to me! :)

MY PRIMARY AND SUB-PRIMARY THEME SONGS:


I would have spoken about them on this blog in April:

To Be A Leader?-My Primary and Sub-Primary Theme Songs! :)

And here now are the Youtube clips of them cued again for you here !:

I am the One and Only by Chesny Hawkes (Primary Theme song)

and

Wonder by Natalie Merchant (Sub-Primary Theme song)




Friday, 25 December 2009

Advent Calendar:Christmas Day!-The Gift of the Christ Child!


Christmas Bread copyright Meady's Musings Production 2009

Well you can just imagine the chaos at Meady's Musings Production house last night! I can say though that all my animals pitched in and it was the most loveliest thing all the same! My donkey (now magical) and his cart went off with Santa and a few of the smaller bears to do the gift giving. My purple elephant and little mouse were busy running a virtual hospital. A lady showed up saying she was the wife of Santa Claus...Mrs Claus if you'll have it...but she was the loveliest thing and she baked us the most delicious bread and other treats for dinner and to have today on Christmas Day!

For Christmas dinner we had invited Deacon Greg Kirk to give the prayers and bring Christmas greetings and that he did and even left us something to say today here on the calendar to ring in Christmas day! We also had some unexpected guests in you guessed it the three 'wise' men! They said they were following a star that had settled just above our tree grove where the animals had set up a carrat (leaf) shed. However my purple elephant had the spare porta camps so they had a place to stay but they kept being agitated about the star and what was to come...

Then just around midnight...we got word that a cousin of our very own donkey of Santa gift giving fame had a cousin in town...some of the monkeys and a few bears (to police them in case they got out of hand again) went out to find him! And that they did but he wasn't alone! He had with him a lady with child and her husband was leading the donkey (our very own donkey's cousin!) They also said they were following the star...and when they got to our house all the animals and people welcomed them and insisted they stay in our tree grove that seemed auspicious in some way! It had this presence about it with the brightest star up above! And we some how felt it so fitting that the lady with child stay at the roots of the great tree...so we made it very comfy as could be! And they really liked the space! Then just after midnight the baby was born...delivered in the loving care of my nurses...the Purple Elephant and little mouse...

All the animals came to see...the three shepherds...the three 'wise' men...all of them...

So today on Meady's Musings Production's Advent calendar we celebrate Christmas Day with just the one big blog post...same on all three blogs...I give you the great prayer by my Brother in UCP Deacon Greg Kirk, Christmas Bread baked by my mom in reality (but Mrs Claus virtually) and Joy to the World! The Lord is come...

Christmas Bread copyright Meady's Musings Production 2009

THE CHRISTMAS PRAYER By Deacon Greg Kirk

The Season of Light

Christmas is Light, the darkness has been overcome by one who came to love. Christmas is more than decorating trees, exchanging gifts and gathering with loved ones. Christmas is an opportunity to embrace the Light - to open to the power, bliss and peace the Light brings.

Jesus of Nazareth desired to know the Light and live within its embrace so deeply, he became one with the Light. He left a path, a way, for you and I to share in this bliss. "Love God with all your being and love your neighbor as you love yourself." Jesus assured us that we are loved completely, unconditionally. He encouraged us to root our lives in the hope and promise of this Love.

My prayer this Christmas is for people everywhere to experience the Light and Love within them, to know more deeply of their beauty and dignity, to experience the Essence or True Self within and to find the freedom to be the people they were created to be.

Darkness abounds in our world, in many circumstances and ways. Embracing the Light -being open to every person's truth, daring to love others, especially the vulnerable and marginalized, causes the darkness to recede and the Light to shine more brilliantly.

Dare to be Light, dare to be Love. Dare to be one with the One who is Light and Love as Jesus did. You will find new possibilities and power. You will find yourself. And you will find yourself within the heart of God.

Love, Greg


Thursday, 24 December 2009

Advent Calendar:24 Dec 09-The Gift that is Santa Claus!

Today the bears went out to the market on their own. They are my house guests and I would not have let them go shopping for food...which I consider myself obliged to supply but they sneaked out! A grizzly kept watch while a Canadian black bear and Polar bear took me to see some supposedly newly installed gadgetry in each of the tricked out mangers where the three shepherds and their lambs sleep. While I was on my way there...a Winnie the Pooh like bear, an Indian sloth bear (supposedly descended straight from the line of Jambhavan the bear king) and two other polar bears left in a donkey cart for the market! I was minorly irritated by the incident but then reconciled with myself that they were after all bears and so ate as such! They were all nice and apologetic about it when they returned and so I accepted the bouquet of sunflowers (two bouquets now) and their apologetic words!

But their whole sneakiness also seemed minor compared to the rest of the story! You see the Purple elephant and the little mouse saw when the bears left and knowing I'd not like it decided to follow them. When the bears realised it they agreed to all shop together in the market...and while they were having fun they heard big screams! They all ran to the spot where the screams came from to find a batch of ladies in tears complaining about a batch of monkeys of varying size, origin and nationality attacking them and taking their bags!

This really got the purple elephant and little mouse mad and the elephant used his towering size and big strides to quickly comb and survey the areas and dispatched the bears to find the monkeys. They were all found and the Indian sloth bear was asked to judge over them. He was chosen based on his royal lineage and the fact that some of the monkeys were also descended from Indian monkeys who were related to Lord Hanuman and other monkeys who worked on the Setu bridge alongside bears! So some of the monkeys felt him a fair choice. In the end all monkeys were found guilty but in tears agreed before all the animals and the ladies to reform their ways! They agreed to return all their stolen goods by going to homes all day long and to come back to the house tonight Christmas eve and to stay with the other animals for Christmas! The animals agreed to build a few tree houses so that they could be accommodated. So there you have it Meady's Musings Production house will now be housing monkeys of every shape and kind as well! :)

So my bears and others have been working on those tree houses since they came back from the market. While they were all busy I decided to take a break under one of the marvelous Samaans that reside in my yard. When at the edge of a nearby pond I heard and saw an old man sobbing! I went up to him to ask him what was wrong and it was then he explained to me that he was indeed (as I had suspected in my magical land this could happen)Santa Claus! But he was sobbing because all of his reindeer including Rudolph were sick...he suspected it could be swine flu but he really didn't know what to do!

Now I was really strained for accommodations at this point and I couldn't put my bears on more projects so the purple elephant agreed to go out and buy a few Porta Camps! In there we agreed to isolate and nurse the ailing reindeer and guess what!?

Santa Claus and I conceived that we could use his magic dust to make my donkey magical and able to fly! And so all the gifts to kids world over this Christmas Eve night are going to be delivered by my donkey! And will be stored in his donkey cart you see! :)

When the Purple Elephant came home with the porta camps an hour ago he said he had spotted the three big camels with the transformed men sitting on them (from yesterday's sighting)and he decided to buy an extra porta camp as he had a strong sense of Elephantitis that they were headed to our house! Hmmm...

By now you must realise Santa Claus is here! And also the Magi are possibly heading our way...so to celebrate the great saint and on the whole the loveliness of gift giving here is how we will give our salutes!:

-On Meady's Musings: I reminisce on the Santa poll that we ran last year on the UCP blog and ask you again to comment or vote in this year if you like.
-On UCP: We re-publish the post we did last year on the great saint...Saint Nicholas...
-On Books and Films Corner: We link to Youtube clips from our all time favourite Santa flicks! :)

SANTA POLL-Do You Believe in Santa Claus?

We asked it last year and this is the re-published results from that poll. Feel free to write in and tell us again this year how you feel...and perhaps some of you have changed your minds?

"I asked the question:

"Do You Believe in Santa Claus?"

to my readers allowing them to choose one response only of the following:

-YES
-NO
-MAYBE

I created the poll on Sat 6 Dec 2008 to compliment my post 'Do You Believe in Santa Claus?- Saint Nicholas Day' which I posted to commemorate Saint Nicholas Day and to join in Universal Collective Prayer with the great Saint who acted out his Universal Collective Prayer by giving gifts to children. I wanted to make his name unsullied from the commercialism that had done so while still embracing the fact that many American traditions that may have gone on to sully his name had also made him into the image he now is and perhaps preserved him so long too. So not all is bad in Americana and commercialism cause perhaps not for that the saint would be dead to our brain's memory although perhaps still in our superconscious hearts or soul...but as the American iconography keeps him so real it also reminds us of him much like iconography in Hinduism and in so doing perhaps opens us up a bit more to his spirit than if he had no form. You see giving him a form keeps him real to us on this material plane as much as an image of Baby Krishna stealing ghee does for opening up the heart of the Bhakti Yogi...one who practises pure love to reach enlightenment. So for this I salute the American Santa Claus! And in so doing I give you the results of the poll:

Out of 11 persons casting their vote here on Universal Collective Prayer...cause others did vote on Intent. Here is the break down:

Yes = 7 votes (63%)
No = 1 vote (9%)
Maybe = 3 votes (27%)

So the 'I s' have it! YES WE BELIEVE IN SANTA CLAUS! :)"

Come on tell us what you think this year! ;)

Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Advent Calendar: 23 Dec 09-The Gift of the Magi


A Shopping Centre in Spain (as taken in 2007 from Wikimedia Commons)

"The tradition in Spain and some Latin American countries is that the Three Wise Men are who bring gifts to children at Christmas. In recent years, as an assimilation of the Anglo-Saxon tradition of Santa Claus, they often appear at gift shops and shopping malls, where children have the opportunity to take a picture sitting on their knees and deliver the letter with their demands."



The purple elephant and the little mouse had gone off to the market to stock up on food for all the many house guests that Meady's Musings Production House has been accumulating over the last few weeks when the most funniest thing happened! So funny the purple elephant is rolling on the floor in laughter appearing as if he is in some circus stunt (God forbid he should ever be entrapped in one of those!) as he retells the story with the little mouse...

Apparently the little mouse sat on his shoulder as they went through the market and hid behind his ears every time they noticed a passerby that wouldn't understand that they could be 'clean' mouses in markets. They always do this...and the little mouse advises the purple elephant by whispering into his ear what looks good and what does not...what is too pricey...what is a deal!

So using that tried and tested approach they had already procured honey for the bears (we have since had to buy honey outside our contract after the bee colony strikes earlier on especially to prevent any further Winnie the Pooh impersonations!), bread for the shepherds and even a bouquet of sunflowers for me! :) When that most funniest thing happened!

They saw three men arguing in the middle of the market square! They all had come out of their SUV-sports utility vehicle...each with a smart phone in their hand...arguing that the tallest one who was the driver and the owner of the SUV did not know where he was going as each of their phones gave different directions and that for sure he must have mis-programmed his SUV's GPS! What made it so funny for the purple elephant and the little mouse was the whole scene and antics! The SUV had grinded to a halt right in the middle of the market square kicking up a considerable amount of dust and screeching! And the three men immediately exited from it popping out like if they were compressed hot air inside of there! And all three congregated in a circle pointing at smart phones and then the sky and each trying to out voice the other! But that was not all...

As they argued three large camels seem to appear from no where and used their long necks to scoop a man each up into the air and onto their backs! The expression on each of the men's faces as they all of a sudden grew beards and donned long silky robes is what still has the purple elephant rolling on the floor and I have to tell you my floor tiles are not faring well!

As you might have guessed from that little story the Three Wisemen or the Three Magi or the Three Kings whatever you like to call them are in town! :) And here on the calendar we wish to salute them! :) We had a lot of fun all of last year's Advent calendar long with them and must now again bow to them! And shall do it in this format:

-On Meady's Musings: Who were the Magi? as described on the New Advent (Catholic encyclopedia)and that lovely song with Hugh! ;)
-On UCP: The Time and Circumstances of Their Visit again as described on the New Advent (Catholic encyclopedia).
-On Books and Films Corner: A glimpse of them in the 2006 film The Nativity Story.

So here we go!:

WHO WERE THE MAGI?

As taken from the New Advent
"who the magi were
Non-Biblical evidence

We may form a conjecture by non-Biblical evidence of a probable meaning to the word magoi. Herodotus (I, ci) is our authority for supposing that the Magi were the sacred caste of the Medes. They provided priests for Persia, and, regardless of dynastic vicissitudes, ever kept up their dominating religious influence. To the head of this caste, Nergal Sharezar, Jeremias gives the title Rab-Mag, "Chief Magus" (Jeremiah 39:3, 39:13, in Hebrew original — Septuagint and Vulgate translations are erroneous here). After the downfall of Assyrian and Babylonian power, the religion of the Magi held sway in Persia. Cyrus completely conquered the sacred caste; his son Cambyses severely repressed it. The Magians revolted and set up Gaumata, their chief, as King of Persia under the name of Smerdis. He was, however, murdered (521 B.C.), and Darius became king. This downfall of the Magi was celebrated by a national Persian holiday called magophonia (Her., III, lxiii, lxxiii, lxxix). Still the religious influence of this priestly caste continued throughout the rule of the Achaemenian dynasty in Persia (Ctesias, "Persica", X-XV); and is not unlikely that at the time of the birth of Christ it was still flourishing under the Parthian dominion. Strabo (XI, ix, 3) says that the Magian priests formed one of the two councils of the Parthian Empire.
Biblical evidence

The word magoi often has the meaning of "magician", in both Old and New Testaments (see Acts 8:9; 13:6, 8; also the Septuagint of Daniel 1:20; 2:2, 2:10, 2:27; 4:4; 5:7, 5:11, 5:15). St. Justin (Tryph., lxxviii), Origen (Cels., I, lx), St. Augustine (Serm. xx, De epiphania) and St. Jerome (In Isa., xix, 1) find the same meaning in the second chapter of Matthew, though this is not the common interpretation.
Patristic evidence

No Father of the Church holds the Magi to have been kings. Tertullian ("Adv. Marcion.", III, xiii) says that they were wellnigh kings (fere reges), and so agrees with what we have concluded from non-Biblical evidence. The Church, indeed, in her liturgy, applies to the Magi the words: "The kings of Tharsis and the islands shall offer presents; the kings of the Arabians and of Saba shall bring him gifts: and all the kings of the earth shall adore him" (Psalm 71:10). But this use of the text in reference to them no more proves that they were kings than it traces their journey from Tharsis, Arabia, and Saba. As sometimes happens, a liturgical accommodation of a text has in time come to be looked upon by some as an authentic interpretation thereof. Neither were they magicians: the good meaning of magoi, though found nowhere else in the Bible, is demanded by the context of the second chapter of St. Matthew. These Magians can have been none other than members of the priestly caste already referred to. The religion of the Magi was fundamentally that of Zoroaster and forbade sorcery; their astrology and skill in interpreting dreams were occasions of their finding Christ. (See THEOLOGICAL ASPECTS OF THE AVESTA.)

The Gospel narrative omits to mention the number of the Magi, and there is no certain tradition in this matter. Some Fathers speak of three Magi; they are very likely influenced by the number of gifts. In the Orient, tradition favours twelve. Early Christian art is no consistent witness:

* a painting in the cemetery of Sts. Peter and Marcellinus shows two;
* one in the Lateran Museum, three;
* one in the cemetery of Domitilla, four;
* a vase in the Kircher Museum, eight (Marucchi, "Eléments d'archéologie chrétienne", Paris, 1899, I 197).

The names of the Magi are as uncertain as is their number. Among the Latins, from the seventh century, we find slight variants of the names, Gaspar, Melchior, and Balthasar; the Martyrology mentions St. Gaspar, on the first, St. Melchior, on the sixth, and St. Balthasar, on the eleventh of January (Acta SS., I, 8, 323, 664). TheSyrians have Larvandad, Hormisdas, Gushnasaph, etc.; the Armenians, Kagba, Badadilma, etc. (Cf. Acta Sanctorum, May, I, 1780). Passing over the purely legendary notion that they represented the three families which are descended from Noah, it appears they all came from "the east" (Matthew 2:1, 2, 9). East of Palestine, only ancient Media, Persia, Assyria, and Babylonia had a

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