Secrets to Life

Secrets to Life articles by Chris Emmanuel.

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Love is sunshine for the soul; the sun shines on all, even on dark days it’s still behind the clouds.

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Kindness to animals and to all living things is one good way of expressing true religion.  -Joseph F. Smith Many times we are all so wrapped up inside our heads that we don’t notice what is going on around us. And other times we witness something so emotionally charged it jolts us back into the reality outside ourselves. This was the case on this particular day I boarded the water taxi heading to San Pedro from Belize City.

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We do not inherit the earth from our ancestors; we borrow it from our children.  ~Native American Proverb  

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Maybe So, Maybe Not. - Ancient Taoist ProverbOne day, a farmer's horse ran away. His neighbors expressed sympathy, "What terrible luck that you lost your horse!" The farmer replied, "Maybe so, maybe not." A few days later, the horse returned, leading several wild horses. The neighbors shouted, "Your horse has returned, and brought more with him. What great fortune!" The farmer replied, "Maybe so, maybe not."

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It's not hard to make decisions when you know what your values are.  ~Roy Disney One of my ceiling fans stopped working. A quick trip to the hardware store placed a fan in box on my living room floor waiting to be installed. It all seems easy enough. Taking down the broken fan, I came upon a screw that wouldn’t loosen. After numerous consecutive tries I finally got some movement. I discovered a bolt attached to the screw that kept spinning not allowing me to loosen its’ hold.

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“Worry often gives a small thing a big shadow.” Last week as we watched the sea boil up and the storm surge crash against the shore; we wondered how much rain is really going to show up here in San Pedro. Earlier on talking with some of the locals I could see how lost we really are to what nature is doing. CNN had us all hooked to the TV as we watched Tropical Storm Matthew. But do they really know what the great mother is doing?

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“Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” Because of the present economic uncertainties, a lot of people are unsure about their future and feel insecure about themselves. These are tough times to be living in, but not as harsh as the past. A key element in surviving turbulent times lies in how much investment we make to our faith.

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“When mistrust comes in, loves goes out.” Villagers gone mad? Reading this story in last week’s newspaper left a sickening feeling in my stomach. A community psychic who said the children Onelia and Benjamin Rash were fed to the crocodiles by American couple Vince & Cherie Rose, stirred up villagers who then burned the couple’s home and crocodile Sanctuary.

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“Contented are those whose joy is not dependent upon the changing nature of the material reality.” Banana trees don’t care about money, they live by the seasons. Rain and sunshine, their power is patience. They know waiting long enough the season will change. We live in a world of opposites, to every turn of the earth there is a season turn, turn, turn. And a time for every purpose, under Heaven.

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"People turn to God when their foundations are shaking, only to discover that it is God that is shaking them."

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"Stress is nothing more than a socially acceptable form of mental illness." ~Richard Carlson “I don’t care!!” She yells out at the girl behind the counter. It’s always uncomfortable when you walk into a situation where two people are arguing. You know nothing about what’s going on. I wanted to get something in the store, but I am at odds with the shouting. I decide to come back later and leave. No one likes to be around stress. Though, some people enjoy watching confrontation just to see what will happen.

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"It is not flesh and blood but the heart which makes us fathers and sons." ~Johann Schiller

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"An apology is the superglue of life. It can repair just about anything." - Lynn Johnston Most of the time we feel we can control life. This is the illusion we all enjoy called choice. But truth is there is a bigger player orchestrating what we call life. Life happens whether we make plans or not.

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"Silence is the source of great strength" - Lao Tzu There are beautiful flowers in Belize. Each one a unique variety, it’s hard to remember them all. Orchids are especially astounding some almost extraterrestrial looking show us the brilliance of nature’s simplicity. When you see these flowers you can only stare in amazement, as their silent beauty takes your breath away. That’s why flowers are a great way to show specialness without talking.

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“Watch your thoughts, for they become words. Watch your words, for they become actions. Watch your actions, for they become habits. Watch your habits, for they become character. Watch your character, for it becomes your destiny.” Thoughts are like virus floating through the air. One must be careful what you pick up and take into the mind.

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There are no conclusions, just constant continuation Last week I wrote about remembering what has value. Thinking about it all we all fall asleep to our personal truth at times. This column is called secrets to life, but as I have said before, most of what I write is no secret instead it is an internal scrutiny of the world around us. Looking into ourselves we are able to see truth. The kingdom is within.

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“It’s never about what happens to you, but what you become through it.” - Emmanuel  As we sat watching the whirling vortex called “Alex” on CNN approach Belize’s shoreline, I thought to myself how little we are compared to the vastness of the earth. We are so dependant to the very thing we often mistreat. The earth provides all the elements we need every day. The basic four: fire, water, air, earth, is the backbone of all life. We take for granted that they will always be there.

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“All I have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I have not seen.” - Ralph Waldo Emerson 

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“I discovered that when I believed my thoughts, I suffered, but that when I didn't believe them, I didn't suffer, and that this is true for every human being. Freedom is as simple as that. I found that suffering is optional. I found a joy within me that has never disappeared, not for a single moment. That joy is in everyone, always.” - Byron Katie

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 "We all should know that diversity makes for a rich tapestry, and we must understand that all the threads of the tapestry are equal in value not matter what their color.” - Maya Angelou

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