Jan 22, 2010

Checking In...

I've been inspired recently by my brother, whose example of transitioning to a vegan diet heavily influenced my own decision to become a vegan. You can read up on his progress here.

I'll be back soon to post some updates on Personal Challenge #3, which has to do with taking care of some financial business. I'll also be writing about my January Compact journey and what I'm learning throughout the process.

Jan 18, 2010

Injustice Anywhere...

Today I've been thinking a lot about Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. I've been thinking about the life he lived and the legacy he left behind.

This morning I was watching t.v. coverage of an MLK event taking place at the church in Atlanta, GA where both Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and his father were pastors. And I listened to Dr. Cornell West speak and I wish I could have recorded his speech or wrote it down because he said so much, so powerfully that I was actually moved to tears. Among many other things, Dr. West talked about how one of the things Dr. King was concerned about was the question of what it means to be human and to live a life of service. Dr. West also spoke about how love, when it is brought into the public sphere, becomes justice.

I'll leave you today with a few of my favorite Martin Luther King, Jr. quotes:
"Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere."
"At the center of non-violence stands the principle of love."
"History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people."

And a question: What have you done, are you doing, or will you do to keep the legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. alive?

Jan 12, 2010

Personal Challenge #3: Take Care of Financial Business (Week 1 of 4)

I'm back. Really. I am. And my third personal challenge is going to be all about getting my finances fit. Each week I will focus on one or two pressing items. This week, my focus will be:
1. Getting a handle on my student loans, including consolidating some of them (so that I can pay well above the minimum payment, but do not have to if a tough month or two comes up);
2. Resuming a committed effort to tracking my expenses.

My intention is to blog a few times this week about what I've learned that I think might be of use to others. Other than that, I'm also almost halfway through my month-long commitment to participate in The Compact and buy nothing new. It's been easier than I expected. I even returned a few unwanted items today and EARNED myself $33. Whoo, hoo! And I didn't even have the urge to walk around the clothing store... in, to the counter, nice exchange with a nice salesperson, and out. It was that easy.

Update: I'm still doing well at my first personal challenge, which is to donate/get rid of ten items a week. The second challenge, 10+ minutes of yoga/meditation a day has been harder for me to stick with, but I am recommitting myself this week. I'll let you know how it goes.

Jan 8, 2010

One Simple Way to Change the World

Since I've become a vegan, I've tried to be careful about not talking about it too much, not pushing my ideas on others, not coming across as all-knowing or off-putting. And then I watched this video. And I remembered that it is important to not only live your values, but to talk about them once in a while. Please watch it here. It will take eleven minutes of your life, but it might just show you or remind you about one simple way that you can change the world.

[Image available at http://www.csa.com/discoveryguides/design/images/earth.jpg]