Fibromyalgia According to “Doctor’s Guide to Natural Medicine” by Paul Barney, M.D.

I have friends and family that suffer with Fibromyalgia symptoms everyday, and there’s hundreds more beyond them. I sincerely hope the information posted here helps you.

Under various photographs of the columns are links to the type of natural medicine products Dr. Barney discusses in the book. Please feel free to leave comments in the below section if you have tried any of the below suggestions, and did they help you with your symptoms?


If you would like to purchase the book, it is available on Amazon; click here.


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Nature’s Life Malic Acid

     Produces energy, Single minerals, Contains 250 veg capsules. Malic acid is easily absorbed and completely metabolized to produce energy. Malic acid is one of the alpha-hydroxyl acids found in fruits, including cranberries & grapes. Malic acid is also an intermediary product in the body’s energy production of foods. 

Doctor’s Best High Absorption Magnesium Glycinate Lysinate

     Doctor’s Best High Absorption Magnesium supports bone density, helps maintain a normal, regular heartbeat and supports overall cardiovascular health. Made with TRAACS, a patented, form of bioavailable magnesium that is chelated to optimize bioavailability. As many as 75% of Americans are deficient in magnesium and magnesium deficiency increases with age. Doctor’s Best High Absorption Magnesium is “not buffered”, a term meaning that is it not mixed with less expensive and less absorbable magnesium oxide. Vegan, Non-GMO, and Gluten Free.

Nature Wise 5-HTP 100 mg

     5 HTP is a building block of serotonin, the “feel good” neurotransmitter that regulates our moods and sleep cycles. Nature Wise 100 mg 5 HTP supplement includes vitamin B6, which assists the conversion of 5-HTP to serotonin.

Dr. Tobias Super Digestive Enzymes

     SUPPORTS PROPER DIGESTION WITH EACH MEAL: Helps digest multiple food groups. As one of the most complete digestive enzyme formulas on the market, Optimum Digest is formulated with a diverse range of 18 different enzymes to help you digest more easily QUALITY MADE IN THE USA, ACCORDING To cGMP STANDARDS. Use with pride and confidence. HELPS SUPPORT GLUTEN DIGESTION WITH ASPERGILLOPEPSIN. Supports overall digestion and immune system for you to feel healthy.

Jazzee Grape Seed Extract

     MAXIMUM VALUE / MAXIMUM STRENGTH: Each bottle contains 180 veggie capsules, each capsule contains a healthy 400 mg of Grape Seed Extract, and the extract contains a minimum of 95% Polyphenols. This combination means you are getting the most antioxidants per bottle possible!

Life Extension Pycnogenol French Maritime Pine Bark Extract

Pycnogenol promotes the integrity and normal characteristics of cell membranes.1-4. DNA function: Pycnogenol helps support normal DNA function through antioxidant activity and possibly other mechanisms. Easing inflammation: Pycnogenol helps ease inflammation by normal modulation of inflammatory cytokine molecules. 

NusaPure SAM-e (S-Adenosyl Methionine) with a 100% Money Back Guarantee

MAX STRENGTH SAM-e: NusaPure’s maximum strength SAM-e supplement contains 500mg of SAM-e per capsule, and 180 capsules in each bottle. SAM-e (S-Adenosyl Methionine) is mostly consumed and produced in the liver, and acts as a regulator of processes including DNA methylation, amino acid metabolism, & immune reaction. Don’t settle for other tablets or pills that only offer 200mg or 400mg of SAM-e per dose. We offer 500mg of SAM-e per capsule for a tremendous deal.

Nature’s Nutrition Omega-3 Fish Oil with a 100% Money Back Guarantee

     Triple strength 2000mg, ultra pure DHA & EPA, & best Pelagic fish oil. MAX STRENGTH SAM-e: NusaPure’s maximum strength SAM-e supplement contains 500mg of SAM-e per capsule, and 180 capsules in each bottle. SAM-e (S-Adenosyl Methionine) is mostly consumed and produced in the liver, and acts as a regulator of processes including DNA methylation, amino acid metabolism, & immune reaction. Don’t settle for other tablets or pills that only offer 200mg or 400mg of SAM-e per dose. We offer 500mg of SAM-e per capsule for a tremendous deal.

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Thorne Research Vegan Manganese Bisglycinate

     Supports antioxidant function, protects cell membranes from oxidative damage, and is an important mineral for connective tissue health.

Qunol Ultra CoQ10 3x Better Absorption Patented Water & Fat Soluble

     #1 Cardiologist Recommended Form of CoQ10. Qunol Ultra’s specially-formulated (solubilized) CoQ10 dissolves 100% in water and fat, providing 3X better absorption. With Qunol Ultra CoQ10, optimum blood levels of CoQ10 are reached in just weeks—not months as with regular [5] CoQ10.

Superior Labs Alpha Lipoic Acid

     Zero synthetic additives, fillers, heavy metals, or micros. All ingredients are tested for heavy metals polution and harmful bacterias. All products are produced in a certified NSF facility & are GMP & FDA compliant.

Vimerson Health Glucosamine Chondroitin, Turmeric, & MSM

     Vimerson Health’s Glucosamine Complex is a complete supplement for the joints. Our product can ease the pain and discomforts that come with age, fibromyalgia, weight or athletic deterioration of the joints. Vimerson Health’s unique formula is designed for anyone who has joint pain, joint stress or experiences joint stiffness, and it may help repair cartilage, boost joint mobility, increase joint flexibility, support joint structure, protect joint tissue and reduce inflammation. 

Grandma’s Night Nervine

     Best herbal supplement for soothing nerves from daily stresses that keep you from a good night’s sleep? Grandma’s NIGHT NERVINE is a great all natural way to calm and soothe the nerves and help the body to relax so sleep comes more easily.

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Bulk Supplements Devil’s Claw Extract Powder

     Provides pain relief & Anti-inflammatory aide. Product is native to Africa, Devil’s Claw is a spiny plant that uses its hooks to attach to animals in order to spread its seeds. It’s also known as a grapple plant or hook plant and surprisingly is a member of the sesame family. Item can be used with lotion or oils as a topical treatment for skin conditions as well.

Starwest Botanicals Yucca Root Powder

     Originates from Mexico and comes with a 100% satisfaction guarantee. Contains simply 4 ounces of wild crafted Yucca Root Powder.

Endocrine System Support Alcohol Free with Alfalfa Leaves & Seeds Extract Included

     Also contains borage flower and herb, burdock root, licorice root, stinging nettle root, and wild yam root. Alcohol free herbal extract, super concentrated, tincture supplement, liquid form. Can be mixed with tea, other beverage, or quickly dropped under the tongue for fast absorption.

Starwest Botanicals Wild Yam Root Powder Organic

     Botanical name is dioscorea opposite, this product originates from China and is USDA Certified Organic, and is certified Kosher.

Bixa Botanical Sarsaparilla Powder (Hemidesmus Indicus)

USA Certified 100% Organic from India. Extremely useful as a blood purifier and cooling agent. It contains antioxidant properties, helps lower hyperacidity and gastric problems. Comes with a 100% Replacement Warranty.

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Additional Resources:

American Fibromyalgia Syndrome Association (AFSA)
P.O. Box 32698
Tucson, AZ 85751
(520) 733 – 1570

National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association (NfmCPA)
31 Federal Avenue
Logan, UT 84321
(801) 200-3627

Please feel free to leave comments below! Have you tried any of the below suggestions & did they help you with your symptoms?


If you would like to purchase the book, it is available on Amazon; click here.





The information on this site is not intended or implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. All content, including text, graphics, images and information, contained on or available through this web site is for general information purposes only. makes no representation and assumes no responsibility for the accuracy of information contained on or available through this web site, and such information is subject to change without notice. You are encouraged to confirm any information obtained from or through this web site with other sources, and review all information regarding any medical condition or treatment with your physician. NEVER DISREGARD PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE OR DELAY SEEKING MEDICAL TREATMENT BECAUSE OF SOMETHING YOU HAVE READ ON OR ACCESSED THROUGH THIS WEB SITE. does not recommend, endorse or make any representation about the efficacy, appropriateness or suitability of any specific tests, products, procedures, treatments, services, opinions, health care providers or other information that may be contained on or available through this web site. WANDERLUSTANDSMOKE.WORDPRESS.COM IS NOT RESPONSIBLE NOR LIABLE FOR ANY ADVICE, COURSE OF TREATMENT, DIAGNOSIS OR ANY OTHER INFORMATION, SERVICES OR PRODUCTS THAT YOU OBTAIN THROUGH THIS WEB SITE.





5 Researched Facts About Out Of Body Experiences (OBE’s)

There are a variety of ways to experience out of body experiences, as well as many different reasons why they might occur. Here is a list of facts to get you started on your acquaintance with out of body experiences. If you have experienced one, please feel free to share you experience in the comments below. I look forward to hearing from you!


05. Spontaneous Out Of Body Experiences (AKA: OBE) During Sleep

They often happen during or near sleep, and can sometimes be described as sleep paralysis. When a person is about to go into an OBE state either during sleep or when they are about to sleep, they go through a phase of lucid dreaming. Lucid dreaming is when you have the opportunity to control your actions during your dream, interact with it, and reason with it. Often times people experience a floating sensation as if seperated from the body and floating in the air. Sleep paralysis is a term applied when the person feels themselves in their bodies but cannot move, speak, or do anything.

Have you ever felt like you were floating above your body during sleep or while dreaming?


DMT: The Spirit Molecule: A Doctor’s Revolutionary Research into the Biology of Near-Death and Mystical Experiences

04. Near-Death Experiences

This is another form of OBE where you experience being outside of your body while avoiding death. This type of OBE is often times caused by a detrimental trauma to the physical body. It’s often reported after surgery, near drowning accidents, automobile and motorcycle accidents, and others. Another common thread included in near death experiences is the ability to see deceased loved ones, religious figures like Jesus, Buddha, or Krishna, a feeling of being dead, the inability to experience pain, encountering angels, intelligent light forms, God-type entities, and many other sensory experiences.

Have you experienced a physical trauma that caused you to experience something unexplainable?


Adventures Beyond the Body: How to Experience Out-of-Body Travel


03. Extreme Physical Effort & Physically Demanding Environment

This sort of OBE is experienced after pushing ones self through extreme physical limitations, such as marathon running and high-altitude climbing. There have been reports of being able to perceive both air and ground-based views of their environment simultaneously.

Has completing a physically draining task ever put you in an OBE state?


Out-of-Body and Near-Death Experiences: Brain-State Phenomena or Glimpses of Immortality? (Oxford Theology and Religion Monographs)



02. OBE’s Can Be Induced Using Your Own Mind & Calibrating Your Environment

Binaural beats, delta waves, 4 hertz brainwave frequency, and many other brainwave synchronization sounds can be used to induce a powerful mind awake body sleep mental state. The Monroe Institute did specific research utilizing 4 hertz brainwave frequencies and found them to be extremely effective in supporting OBE initiation and contiuum. They were able to uncover that by combining these brainwave sounds, meditation, and mental focus a person could easily guide themselves into an OBE mental state.

Some other methods regularly used that work similarly to 4 hertz brainwave frequencies, binaural beats, and delta waves include, but aren’t limited to:

Sensory depravation, sensory overload, pink noise, strong g-forces, vestibular cortex stimulation, light forms of torture, head-mounted displays with touch that confuses proprioception (the ability to feel other limbs, or not feel limbs at all), and even repetitive Native-American drums and chanting or Indian flute music have been successfully used to initiate OBE mental state.

There are so many different recordings on YouTube that you can experiment with and see which ones work for you. Start with a search for “binaural beats,” “4 hertz brainwave,” or “delta waves.” Good luck!



Science and the Afterlife Experience: Evidence for the Immortality of Consciousness



01. Meditation & Visualization Can Induce OBE’s

The most common term used, mantra repeated, and phrase shared to induce OBE during meditation and visualization is “Mind Awake, Body Asleep.” There are other phrases and visualizations you can use to induce OBE, but this is the most recognized one.

Thomas Edison utilized this mantra to solve issues he experienced with his experiments and inventions. His technique utilized resting a silver dollar on his forehead and sitting with a metal bucket straight up in a chair. The sound of the silver dollar hitting the metal bucket would bring him back to mind just enough to get him into an out-of-body experience. Salvador Dali was well known for also using similar techniques to reach an out-of-body mind state to help develop his artistic creations.

Many other common methods include meditation, deep trance, visualization techniques, and many other tried and true variations.


Astral Projection: The Beginner’s Guide on How to Quickly and Successfully Experience Your First Out of Body Adventure

If you have experienced astral projection or an out of body experience, please feel free to share you experience in the comments below. I look forward to hearing from you!

Top 5 Of The Most Expensive & Interesting Metaphysical Items I found On Amazon

I don’t know about you, but when I get bored I catch myself just flipping through websites and basically window shopping. Nor do I ever intend to buy most of the things I see, but often times I just want to be entertained.

One of my favorite things to window shop the internet for are odd spiritual, metaphysical, ancient healing (you get the picture) sort of items. They always come with some sort of exaggerated promise of mystical powers, and some sort of divinatory or spirit-guide driven message to confirm what a special unique snowflake you are. Nothing entertains me quite like metaphysical odds and ends.

This random boredom driven flipping around on the internet has opened my eyes to things I had NO idea was a “thing”.

So, I thought I’d share some of my most interesting finds with you. Enjoy!

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Collectible PRIEST KILLER Kachina Native-American Statue

Yes, you read that correctly. This very unique and beautiful statue is an artistic and hand-made image of a person in the process of stabbing a Native Priest. In all bold, on the very front, it reads “PRIEST KILLER”  For only $6,500.00 YOU can say you own a priest killer….

Okay, in all seriousness, it is a rarely seen Kachina representing the Pueblo Revolt of the 1600s and it’s gorgeous! I love turquoise.

“Painstakingly inlaid with multi-colored stones and shells. Made from sterling silver. Removable parts. Stamped sterling handmade. Maker is unknown. Stands approx. 8 inches tall and a total of 9 inches wide. The total weight is 1539 grams or 3.6 pounds. A true one of a kind piece and stunning addition to any collection. As with all handmade and natural elements please allow for imperfections.”

Priest Killer Kachina Native American Statue

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The Elder Futhark Runes – “An Instantly Accurate And Powerful Divinatory System”

If you don’t know what runes are, they are an extremely old method of divinatory reading utilized by the Norse and Scandinavia historically speaking.

They pre-date tarot cards, but the concept is quite the same. Each separate rune has its own unique message to tell you. The message is usually all about your future, fate, and destiny.

What I didn’t know, was how incredibly expensive they can go for. Which leads me to wonder, is anyone buying these and do they work any better than any other type of divinatory tool? If you have the answer to these questions, I beg you to please answer them in the comments below. 🙂

So what sets these runes apart from the homemade Etsy wooden and rock runes? Pure Silver with their backs in 24k Gold!

There is a very rich person somewhere in the world that really likes their future handled in only the best metals the world has to offer.

It also states right on the front of the box that they, “Read the future, Heal yourself & Others, and get Connected to Divine Beings!” 🙂 Oh, I forgot to mention the price. It’s $899.00!

“The Futhark Runes by Skydin Zeal can be individually placed to Protect your Home or yourself. They can be used to heal various parts of the body against the known ailments. They can be used in conjunction with Yoga, Mantra, Mudra Song, Earth and Feng Shui practices!”

Elder Futhark Runes Silver 24k Gold ExpensiveElder Futhark Runes Silver 24k Gold Expensive CLAIMS

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Aqua Aura Quartz Crystal Tuning Fork with 24k Gold Leaf! One of a Kind Hand-Made Sound Healing Wand!

This seems like a very intense product just based on the pictures and advertisements on Amazon. Very much like the runes up above, it has details all throughout it, and also claims to do a great deal of miraculous stuff for $899.00.

All Quartz Crystal Tuning Forks improve one’s intuition, psychic ability, healing gifts and clairaudience. They can easily and instantly remove anger, and can also be used in dream work. We’ve found them to be physically healing as well, it noticeably and quickly removed local stress and muscle tension in the areas where it was brought near and focused.”

Expensive Tuning Fork Crystal Fancy

Expensive Tuning Fork Crystal Fancy CLAIMS

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Wooden Meditation Pyramid 8 Ft Base for Spiritual Healing

Okay, this next item is actually REALLY COOL in my opinion. It’s basically a tent but has been constructed to be the exact replica of the Great pyramid at Giza, which means that it has precise 51.83° slope angles. Those facts alone make me want to purchase this, if I had an extra $569.00 laying around, but I don’t. I guess I’ll just settle for internet window-shopping instead! It also is appealing to look at without the material on it. The frame alone offers an interesting geometrical perspective to an outdoor setting. The clean shaping is sleek and its color is very earthy.

pyramid giza spiritual tent FRAMEpyramid giza spiritual tent

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Angel Trident, One of a Kind, Hand-Made, Sterling Silver, Sound Healing Wand – AKA a “Tuning Fork” with a Gemstone Handle

Again, metaphysical promises:

“Helps put You in Contact with your Higher Self, Archangels & Spirit Guides. Drives away any Discordant or unwanted Frequencies, Instantly Heals You and Your Clients, Clears Living Spaces of Negativity, Creates Balance and Harmony in All Environments! Stellar Vibrations! Angelic Symbols! The Angel’s Trident is adorned with many Angelic And Kabbalistic Symbols. It is our indisputable experience that when a Metaphysical Instrument follows one Celestial Objective in both Form and Function a much higher Success Rate can be obtained!”

All this for $499.00.

angels trident wand expensive

What is some of the most expensive odd metaphysical stuff you’ve seen for sale? Did you buy it, and did it work for you?


Dong Ahn Geo (Winter Zen Retreat)

There is a documentary on the Amazon Fire Stick that is titled “Zen Buddhism: In Search of Self (English Subtitled)” and its the first ever video recording of the Zen Tradition that dates over 1,000 years. Nuns meditate, fast, and contemplate deeply for ninety days in the mountains of South Korea.

The documentary shows footage of the extremely strict rules they follow while on this retreat on November 29,2001 to February 26,2002. The Nuns goals while at the temple and retreat is to attain enlightenment like Buddha did. This video shows the retreat happening at Baek Hung Buddhist Temple in South Korea. This temple was built during the Silla Dynasty (AD 57-935) and has been practicing strict Zen Buddhism since.

IF YOU WANT TO BE SURPRISED BY THE DOCUMENTARY DONT CONTINUE READING. The below text is recapping information from the documentary that might be beneficial to someone who would rather read about this historical winter Zen retreat.



Dong Ahn Geo – A 1,000 year-old Winter Zen Retreat for Buddhist monks in Korea.

The documentary was filmed during the 90 day meditation of Buddhist nuns at Baek Hung Temple, Palgong Mountain, Daegu, Korea. Baek Hung Temple was built in the 10th century by the Great Monk Hyecheol – the most revered Buddhist monk during King Kyungmoon’s reign of the Silla Dynasty.

This documentary is the first ever recording of this yearly winter retreat that has been happening for thousands of years. [You need to get an Amazon FireStick so you can watch this documentary.]

It starts off with a zen riddle;

“What is this?”

Dong Ahn Geo:

  • Initiation – November 26, 2001
  • Making Kimchi Together – November 27, 2001
  • Settling for Retreat – November 28, 2001
  • Pre-Retreat Ceremony – November 29, 2001
  • Meditation Begins – November 29, 2001

This documentary records the very secretive 90 day journey in which nuns are in search of self.

Baek Hung Temple – has a sign on the door that reads “Meditation Temple. No Trespassing.” Sim Kum Dang is the name for the meditation room. All the nuns sit around the room in grey outfits on large square pads. The room is extremely silent.

Cham Sun – the contemplation of profound questions (Hwa Du) to attain enlightenment

Hwa Du – Profound riddle that causes great doubt leading to enlightenment

The most popular Hwa Du is “What is This?”

Po Hang – walking in a circle to release the fatigue from meditation

The nuns are shown leaving the Meditation Room (Sim Kum Dang) and walking in a circle in the center of the temple. The nuns constantly keep their eyes on the ground when they are walking in a circle or sitting and meditating.

Yong Mang Jung Jin – rigorous meditation without sleep or rest to commemorate Buddha’s Enlightenment from December 1st to 8th by Lunar Calendar

The room is full of nuns again and they are sitting on their pads as they were before. The lighting is dimmer, maybe because the sun is setting? I can’t tell.

Jung Gun Juk Bi – A large bamboo stick is used to awaken or correct the posture of practitioners

A nun walks around the room with the large bamboo stick. She taps the meditators on each shoulder with the stick a few times and then they bow to one another. They aren’t terribly hard hits with the stick… just enough to make noise and create some sensation in the meditator. The meditator goes back to meditating and the walking nun moves to the next person who needs to be awakened.

During Yong Mang Jung Jin, the nuns sit face to face to stay awake. They don’t seem to be looking at one another though. Their gaze seems to be on the ground directly in front of them.

At this point in the film, it is night time, and the nuns are up walking in a circle again to awaken. There isn’t much light present; seems to be just enough to see the path.

Zen Buddhist Nun

Reverend Moo Jin is a Buddhist Nun at the Baek Hung Temple. She says that “Sung Do Jul is the day when Buddha attained enlightenment. Sung means attainment. Do means the way. Buddha was originally an average human being. He suffered greatly. To annihilate his suffering, he performed penance for six years. On December 8th, he attained enlightenment. On December 1st, we begin Yong Mang Jung Jin, the most rigorous meditation. We all wish to be the Buddha on the 8th.”

Sung Do Il Do Ryang Suk – Awakening mankind at 3:00AM on December 8th

A man is standing in the center of the temple banging a circular item/drum with a stick. You can hear someone singing as well.

Daybreak Bell – Praying for all mankind to have an easy passage to paradise

A nun sits in front of the daybreak bell after ringing it saying prayers.

Sung Do Il Daybreak Homage – At 3:30AM, bowing to pay homage to Buddha

All the nuns in the meditation room repeat standing and bowing, bringing their heads all the way to the floor. There is a person who makes a sound with a bamboo stick… each sound encourages a separate movement in the bowing.

zen buddhism sign on door

Reverent Ji Um is a Buddhist Nun at the Baek Hung Temple. She says, “After Yong Mang Jung Jin, it is our custom to cook rice gruel at 5:30AM to protect the pure spirit from the evil spirit. On the day of enlightenment, we eat rice gruel instead of a regular meal for breakfast.”

She sits stirring the pot with a giant wooden spoon. It moved to show her scooping the resin/cinnamon colored mush out of the pan and into another metal container. Rice gruel is a thick dish that is similar to porridge. It is made by cooking white, long grain or glutinous rice in water, stock or both.

The nuns are no longer wearing the all grey outfit they had on earlier but now one with a cinnamon/saffron red color. They go back to repeating the bowing process of standing up and crouching all the way down, bringing the forehead to the floor with hands palms-together. The sun is barely rising and they’ve already accomplished so much.

Zen Korean Buddhist Temple Rural Private Hermitage

Call For Hiking – 8:00AM, Day 54

A nun is wearing a zip up jogger type jacket and sweat pants and is ringing the drum with a stick. You start to see the nuns gathering in the center of the temple, palms together, repeating mantras in unison. All of the nuns are in grey again, with hats, thick clothes and hiking shoes.

They all start to leave the temple and they look so happy and full of joy. They are free to laugh, converse and look around and observe the environment. One by one they all start heading up a hill to follow through with their hike.

At the top of the mountain the nuns chitter chatter and enjoy the scenery. They are all drinking from little metal cups, eating little bars of food and smiling. The scenery is beautiful, showing miles of the Korean landscape full of greenery. They post for photographs and giggle. The ground is covered with snow… its winter and very cold. It shows a close up as they trudge higher into their hike, their pants are tucked into their thick winter socks. The terrain has hard snow and areas that look slippery if not paid attention to. At the top they bow, but this time just the upper body, instead of bowing all the way to the ground as they do in the meditation room.

Reverend Myo Sun is a Buddhist Nun at the Baek Hung Temple… she starts singing a song in Korean which inspired laughter, joy and dancing amongst the other nuns.

They all start heading back down off the mountain towards their temple. One by one in a row on the trail.

Bal Oo Gong Yang – Bal Oo: Buddhist Bowl, Gong Yang: Eating.

Upon their return they sit in the room and get to eat a bowl of rice. Amazon has a similar bowl for sale here, so you can reference what it looks like.

It looks like their silverware has been wrapped to the bowl. I am unsure though. Some of the nuns gather in the center of the room towards the large metal containers of rice. They walk around serving the rice to the other nuns. They always end with a bow.

They eat in silence.

In a drop of water is a cosmic blessing, in a piece of grain is the sweat of 10,000 men. As this meal keeps me healthy I vow to save people from suffering.

When they all were done eating they took the towels that were wrapped around their bowls and start wiping them clean. They put all their items back together and wrap them up tight with the grey cloths. A nun makes a few slapping sounds with a wooden stick and all nuns bow together at once without saying a word during the entire process.

It appears as if the weather has become dreary at the zen monastery. You can see clouds crawling over the mountain tops and the rain drops fleeing from the roof creating trickling sounds on the ground below.

Call for Meditation – 2:20PM, Day 60

Despite the rain, the nun stands outside beating her circular drum. The sound of her beat seems intentional in the spaces she creates between each beat. They start off slow and then picks up speed. She hangs these items up on a post.

The movie moves back inside to the nuns meditating in order around the room. They sit with their left palm on top of their right palm with thumbs touching each other. Their eyes are closed. No movement. No sound.

Zen Nuns Meditating

Here is a thing that is so bright and divine.
Never born. Never dying.
No name. No form.
What is this?

It’s snowing outside the meditation room. It’s silent but seems peaceful. The snowflakes float through the air onto the ground.

Po Hang 8:00AM, Day 61

The meditators maintain their meditation until a nun hits a bamboo stick with her hand. All the nuns begin to stand up and move their way out of the meditation room. They put jackets and scarfs on. Their shoes stay outside of the building under the awning.

They walk in a circle still meditating in their minds but allowing their bodies to move. They continue down some stairs and through a walk way. The nuns all follow the leading nun holding the bamboo stick. No speaking, no noise… just the sounds of shuffling feet in the snow following the nun in front of them. The nun hits the bamboo sticks and the nuns break free from their form.

zen buddhism korean temple snow winter cold white

A nun wipes the snow off of large containers outside of the building. Other nuns sweep snow off of the pathways with elongated brooms. They cover a broad amount of space very efficiently. Still no talking… just silence and working on their task.

Eventually the nuns are back to meditating again. In their room, on their pads, still and focused.

What was I before birth?
Who am I after birth?
Momentarily a human I have been,
After this, who will I be?

There is so much self control. Not a single person moving or making sound. Just plain silence.

Some nuns are found on their hands and knees outside of the meditation room. They clean the floors on both hands and knees. They are meticulous and extremely detailed. Still, not speaking, just focused on the task at hand.

Ool Lyuk – physical labor after meditation.

A nun stands out front banging the drum again. The nuns are now talking again, moving about, putting mittens and beanies on.

They head out into a forested area and are seen carrying logs around. They work together, talking, laughing, and handing wood over. They eventually get to sit down and eat a meal. It looks like a soup with vegetables in it but I am not sure. After eating they continue working and the documentary shows them all working together to load the logs they collected onto a truck.  The logs are delivered back to their buildings and they work together to stack them up in an orderly fashion for later use.

zen buddhist korean nun grey hats sun

Evening Meditation 6:40PM, Day 68

A nun makes sound with the bamboo stick three times as they all are seated back onto their meditation pads and ready to begin again. They all are immediately silent again. All still, silent, not moving. Some nuns sits with their eyes slightly open, focused on the floor infront of them, and others keep their eyes shut. Some sit with their palms ontop of one another and thumbs touching while others simply have them resting on their legs.

One thought arising, it is hell,
One thought reversed, it is heaven.

The next day seems peaceful, birds chirping, clouds and bits of sunlight coming through.

The documentary shows all the nuns working together to make a meal. There isn’t any talking. They are strictly focused on the job at hand. Taking good care to do their jobs perfectly and mindfully. Every single person seems to know exactly what to do and how to do it. They all work collectively well and efficiently. The stoves they cook on are wood fire heated. One completed dishes looks like delicious dumpling’s which they end up laying in the sunlight. Other dishes look similar to Egg Foo Young. I don’t know if that’s exactly what it is they made, but that’s what it reminded me of when I saw it. Since this is a Korean monastery I doubt entirely it’s Egg Foo Young! 🙂 If you watch the documentary and know what it is leave a comment below and enlighten me please.

zen korean nun cooking

Reverend Yuk Moon – Head Priestess, Baek Hung Temple, walks over to the table covered in dishes and places a paper upon the table. There are nuns standing around and bowing and holding their own pieces of paper. There is a nun seated beating her drum. Rev Yuk Moon bows in front of the table, all the way down, forehead touching the floor.

Buddhist Mass to the Mountain God 1:00PM, Day 77

It begins snowing again, no more sunlight and spaced out clouds. The sky is completely grey and snowflakes fall onto the scenery as the nun continues drumming.

There are candles lit and various items in front of an image of a man.

A nun beats her drum and says mantras aloud.

zen korean mountain god art

Buddhist Mass to the Kitchen God 4:30PM, Day 77

There are two white candles on a shelf and some silver dishes, which are laid out under an image of a man. The nun beats her drums and says the mantras aloud. All the nuns recite the mantras together in front of their pots and wood burning ovens. Behind them are large orderly stacks of branches.

When they are done they bow to the image in unison.

zen korean kitchen god altar

Sung Bul Do Game On New Years Eve 7:00PM, Day 77

It is dark outside and all the nuns are collected in a building. There seems to be a playing board with images of Buddha. Each Buddha image has a red number on it between 1 and 4. They are connected to other larger numbers in writing I cannot read. They shake dice and drop them into the center of the game. The nuns are all excitedly gather around the game pieces. They all laugh, talk and cheer one another on. Some of the nuns chant a mantra while the nun shakes the dice and lets them go. They all clap and cheer joyfully.

The three winners receive three bows from other players.

Three nuns, with large smiles on their faces, begin bowing. They bow all the way to the floor, forehead touching the ground, their fingers point up to the sky in unison almost cupping the ear, and then they rise to repeat the process again two more times.

When they are done they all laugh together. All the remaining nuns take turns to bow in front of the three winners.

Hyang Soo Hae Rye – 3:30AM, On New Year’s Eve; paying homage to all Buddhist saints

There is a beautiful altar set up with gold statues, candles, flowers, and other items. There is a scroll beneath the altar hanging up with writing all over it. Unfortunately, I cannot read it.

Tong Al – 3:40AM, on New Year’s Eve; Bowing to Buddha and all mankind

There is a drum beating and all the nuns recite their mantra together in unison. They brow all the way to the floor once and continue the mantras and prayers.

Eventually one nun sings in the center alone for a moment before they all join in and bow while chanting and praying.

zen korean child monk buddhism

Jin Yung Gak Cha Rye – 5:30AM, on New Year’s Eve; Bowing Ceremony to the Founders

The nuns in a room full of food laid out on a table. There are candles and incense burning. They all bow in front of the food.

Late at night, a nun bangs her drum. It shows them all collected together eating food on the floor. They are all chatting silently and enjoying their food.

The next day the sun is shining very brightly. The nuns are gathered in a room and they are all bowing to two people seated up front, one of them being Reverend Yuk Moon. Reverent Yuk Moon hands out pieces of paper to the nuns that bow and they share words.

Reverend Yuk Moon – Head Priestess, Baek Hung Temple, has a cleanly shaven head, tidy clothes and glasses that frame her eyes. She speaks to the nuns who are sitting in an orderly fashion and listening with smiles on their faces.

“In this New Year, I wish all of you attain Buddhahood and all your dreams come true. I salute to your determination to endure hardships living in the monastery. You have only 15 more days to go. Thank you for your effort. I pray for your Buddhahood.” – Reverend Yuk Moon

All the nuns are walking and talking together towards another building. The building has elaborate rails and roofing. Its a dark red, green and white colored. There is writing on the top of the building but I cannot read it. It must be the temple though because it is the room with large statues, candles, incense, food and other items.

They all bow in unison and stay quiet.

buddha enlightenment

Reverend Bup Eui, Head Priest, Eun Hae Temple.

The nuns all bow in front of him and they give him a treat. These little treats look like they are made out of seeds. I am not completely sure what they are made of or called.

He hands a piece of paper over and he says “I have a small gift for you. Happy New Year!”

Eun Hae Temple; Oon Boo Hermitage

There are monks seated in meditation. This room looks quite different. A monk slaps the bamboo three times and all the monks rise.

On New Years Day, monks from the neighboring temples visit the nuns.

The nuns are seated on the floor, dressed in grey clothes. The monks are standing and bowing to them. They are dressed in white and dark cinnamon colored clothing.

The movie moves to a room where they are all seated eating at these small tables. The monks and nuns seem to be eating and enjoying each others company.

Yut Nori Game – Playing the 4 stick game

There is a large green rug laid out on the floor and the nuns and monks seem to be taking turns throwing the four sticks onto the rug. They laugh and cheer each other on throughout the game. One nun is so excited she is clapping the sticks together and chanting along in joy.

Reverend Bup Tah – Eun Hae Temple

Rev Bup Tah rises after the game and hands out little envelopes to the winners.

The next year’s game will take place at Oon Boo Hermatage. One says to the other, “We are not going to lose next year” with laughter and joy in her voice.

The monks gather their shoes outside of the building and they all start heading back to their temple.

Reverend Jung Ho – Director, Baek Hung Temple

They seem to all be serving tea to one another. They sit on the floor in a circle talking and sipping their tea.

Reverend Jung Ho says, “Last year, we won. The more we won, the more exciting it was. But this year, the monks from Oon Boo Hermatage won. Well, they were out guests… we were just nice to them. The monks from Gigi Hermitage never won but did well this year. Tomorrow, we have a long trip visiting many places…” all the nuns listen with smiles on their faces, “including Bup Joo temple… let’s plan accordingly.”

Call for Pilgrimage – 7:30AM, Day 79

A nun stands in front of the temple and hits the drum as they’ve done throughout the film. All the nuns, dressed in thick clothes and beanies gather outside and start walking.

Eun Hae Temple – Geo Jo Hermitage

The nuns all enter the temple in pairs of two.

zen buddha statues disciples

500 Disciples of Buddha, Yung San Temple

As the nuns enter and walk around there are (I’m guessing 500) statues sitting around the room with little bowls placed in front of each of them. Each statue seems to be white, some of them have black hair and facial features painted on, others are more simple looking. Some of them have very large smiles while others have calmer more meditative appearances on their faces.

The nuns, seemingly randomly, bow in front of the little statues. The documentary shows closeups of the statues, they are each incredibly unique. There is an individual being represented in each image, while there are also similarities. Some of the similarities are the materials they have been carved out of and they’re all wearing robes. Not all of the robes are the same color, but they are all robed none the less. They were not laymen.

Each bowl in front of the statue seems to have money or candy or trinkets in them.

Reverend Bup Deung, Head Preist, Temple of Three Buddhas.

The nuns head to another temple, the Temple of Three Buddhas. They visit a statue of Buddha which is accompanied by two other statues. Based on the name of the temple I’m assuming these are the three Buddha’s they are referencing.

johnnyontheroad whats up with the bowing three buddhas korea

Rev Bup Deung shows the nuns around and shares, “This is the original Buddhist seminary of the Silla Dynasty (AD 57-935).” As he speaks the nuns bow to the images.

Mi Ruk Bul, Stone statue of a merciful Buddha.

The scenery is absolutely beautiful. There are rainbows of color in the light that glistens in between the branches of the trees that surround the temple. There are splotches of snow on the ground covering the soil that is keeping these trees alive.

They come upon a stone statue of Buddha and all bow to it. The stone statue looks quite different from the other statues in the film.

At this point in the film, the nuns are again enjoying a giant feast. They all chit chat, enjoy their food, share commentary and enjoy each others company.

To know how it ends… I’m sorry, but you must watch the movie. I hope this shed some light on what happens behind the scenes at a South Korean Buddhist Temple for Nuns.

Meditation, World Peace, & Seeing Spirit Guides

I decided to meditate tonight under the stars. The moon is a waxing crescent (06/27/2017) which means it is a perfect time to say thanks for what you have, as well as making requests for what you would like to attract into your life, or pose questions. People get wrapped up in the asking for things and then they spend the next thirty days doing things to discourage whatever IT is into their life. Then they get mad because they didn’t get what they asked for. It’s a vicious cycle people find themselves in constantly.

I like asking questions and I like waiting for the answers to appear. I feel less greedy and the answers typically guide me towards previously unfound insight.

world peace 3

So, while I was meditating… my mind did what most peoples minds do when they meditate; they talk to themselves about the dumbest crap. Peoples minds do this because we haven’t taken the time to learn how to control our own minds (much less anything else in our lives).

With patience, perseverance and self-love you can, in time, overcome this obstacle. Right now I am finding myself in a position where I catch myself talking to myself, or in imaginary situations that are entirely unreal, and I have the mind to stop myself. My biggest trick in overcoming the self talk, day-dream-esque imaginary stories, and experiences, is saying, “We can have this experience another time. Right now it’s time for me to bond with the universe.” Then I force my ears to listen for sounds, I let my muscles re-relax, I keep my eyes closed while also moving my eye balls upwards towards my third eye… and that is when it happens.



I manage to shut my mind up long enough to feel something I’ve never felt before I decided to start meditating. Each time I meditate the feeling is slightly different from every other one, but they’re all similar as well. It’s like love… there’s love for your mom, love for your pet, then there’s intimate love… they’re all different, but somewhat similar. This is the same thing and I don’t know how else to describe it than me “bonding with the universe.” I hate using the word God because then it creates this image of whatever that person thinks “God” looks like. I like saying universe because it’s something we can look at after the sun has set and it’s something we don’t fully understand in science either. But when you find yourself sitting under the stars at 1AM; there it is… the entire universe and we don’t really get it. For centuries our ancestors have been looking at the same stars feeling the same thing you feel when you look at it. There’s so much we don’t know.

So to all the things we don’t know; I reference the universe. Our species will die off and repopulate the earth having lost all the information gained since the beginning of recorded history. It will all start over again.

world peace 1

Mother Earth is a real living thing. It has always dealt with a virus in whatever way it had to. Humans, in my opinion only, are a virus. We are overpopulating, polluting and draining the planet of all its resources. If we continue on this path and haven’t managed to blow ourselves up with a nuclear bomb, or whatever fun gadget people think up in our future, the planet will kill us off however it needs to so it can repair itself.

In my meditation I remembered a time when I had an experience with my spirit guide. I blacked out at a friends house. Yes, you read that right, my eyes rolled into the back of my head and I fell straight onto my back. That friend thought I died. While I was blacked out I found myself in a foggy space. There was an iron table with an umbrella and two iron chairs. My spirit guide was dressed like he always was. He had a dark navy blue suit on, bronze colored buttons, zippers and cufflinks. He had his pocket watch in his pocket and the chain hanging out. He’s very distinguished in the face while still having facial hair and light colored eyes. In his beard, mustache and hair there are random collections of white hair. He’s aging but not old.

world peace 2

I didn’t recall how I got there nor did it ever cross my mind to ask those questions. I wanted to know how to make world peace real. (What made me ask that questions eludes me to this day.)

After a small discussion, he said, “World Peace is possible, but only if every person on earth agrees and maintains to be compassionate, kind, and considerate. They don’t all have to agree, or see eye to eye, but they must maintain peacefulness. They can’t give into the feelings of greed, jealousy or hate. Peace comes when you have understanding. If you’re truly compassionate, you will be able to understand where the other person/party is coming from. If you are truly kind you will treat others the way you want to be treated; with dignity and respect. If you are considerate, you won’t fail to show that you are thinking about more than just yourself. As simple as that may be… people forget that they want to be happy instead of angry, or fulfilled instead of satiated, or thankful instead of self-defeating. People forget because it is easier to lay blame and people think they are happy while beating others down. It makes others feel powerful when they have pushed a person down for their own desires. They forget that those negative feelings leads to guilt and karma, even though they provide immediate relief. Life in its entirety is a test of patience. Be patient, be still, and be thankful.”

I started hearing my name echoing in the background but I couldn’t tell who it was. I continued the discussion on world peace but whoever was screaming my name was getting louder. It made it hard to talk and I couldn’t hear my spirit guide over the sound of my name being screamed out numerous times.

Out of frustration I stood up from the chair and held my index finger up. I yelled as loud as I could, “Let me find out what’s going on and I’ll be right back. I have so many questions.” He shook his head and said “sure” with a sarcastic tone. I didn’t understand.

world peace 4

That’s when my eyes shot open. I found myself laying in a bed, my entire body from head to toe was covered in sweat droplets, I felt like I was freezing, my body was as stiff as a board, and my friend was looking into my eyes screaming my name. I had muscle aches for about a week after that experience. My body was in excruciating pain immediately after the experience.

I obviously blacked out for a medical reason that I never really figured out but maybe the universe used it as an opportunity to have a talk. I couldn’t argue with my spirit guides words. It made perfect sense to me. None of us need to change our interests, clothes, beliefs or anything… we just need to change how every single one of us deals with one another. We don’t have to agree, but we should live and let live. We should choose love over hate every time. That’s all there is to it.

I thank the universe for that vivid dream. I’ll never forget it.

Love & Light to you all.



Yoga, Meditation and Healing

The Science and Spirituality of Meditation – a documentary that offers perspective on how meditation affects the psychological, physical and spiritual aspects of the human body. The documentary was filmed over a five year period where they traveled and interviewed many different people of different standing and experiences to understand their relationship and ideas on meditation. The documentary is intended to be an unbiased presentation of meditation in general. Filmed by G Productions. Available for viewing on Amazon Fire Stick as of May 24, 2017.

science and spirituality of meditation

We live in a time where we rely on science to explain everything. If science cannot explain it there is a chance we won’t take it seriously. Unfortunately, science can’t explain everything… at least not at the moment.

This documentary not only wants to help understand the scientific part of meditation but also the religious beliefs that accompany it.

Professor Fahri Saatcioglu from the University of Oslo (Department of Molecular Biology) explains that meditation is not just mental contemplation and visual thinking, it has an effect on the molecular structure and DNA encrypted in our bodies.

Dr Frederick Hecht, MD from the University of California San Francisco (Professor of Medicine) states that meditation has a direct effect on the cytokine genes in human tissue.

Jodhpur Rajasthan India

Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India


Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India – documentary visits an ashram outside of the city to discuss with attendees how meditation has directly affected them and their life. There are a few people there infected with HIV and they believe that meditation is helping them heal from this sickness. The man that leads the ashram is Guru Siyag. He believes that the meditation heals because it actives their kundalini. He states the kundalini lays dormant until it is awakened, which he assists with, and forces the kundalini to stand upright and awaken. He explains that in their philosophy of yoga the Sage Patanjali describes eight purposes of Yoga;

  1. Yama – ethics and moral code
  2. Niyama – study and self purification
  3. Asana – the yoga postures practiced
  4. Pranayam – the control of breath during yoga and all other activities
  5. Pratyahar – control of the senses
  6. Dharna – your intentions
  7. Dhyan – meditation
  8. Samadhi – thought and contemplation
Eight Limbs of Yoga

Eight Limbs of Yoga

In yoga, the movements are all regulated by induced by the awakened kundalini. The kundalini sparks all the functions of the human body and helps them develop into something more productive and helpful.


Kundalini Pinterest Unknown Artist.jpg

Kundalini – Image found on Pinterest, Artist Unknown

Guru Siyag also believes that within all of us lies a feminine source of energy which he calls the kundalini. This kundalini is visualized to look like a serpent with its tail in its mouth and as the kundalini awakens it unravels and starts working its way up the direction of the spine. As it travels each chakra slowly awakens and is activated.


Different faiths have a variety of beliefs on how to awaken the kundalini but this particular ashram believes it can be awakened with the assistance of a spiritual guru, who in this documentary is Guru Siyag.

Guru Siyag India

Guru Siyag


Many followers in this movie explain that they all experience involuntary movements when their kundalini was awakened and had no physical control over them. Their bodies would bounce, twist, stretch and move in ways they claim they didn’t do intentionally. They all believe that it is the functioning of the kundalini moving up along the spine towards the highest chakra which connects us to the universe as a whole.

In India the belief in meditation and the abilities of spiritual guru’s is so heavy that even physicians in the area recommend the Guru to help heal them of their illnesses; specifically in this documentary they state the Guru can help cure them of HIV.

One man claims he was advised by a physician to see the guru and practice meditation. He said that knowing he was going to die from HIV he saw no other choice than to give it a try. He claims that each day he meditated his illness and symptoms slowly started to disappear. He felt better as each day passed. The man provides documentation on film of his medical records showing the test results and also showing that he refused treatment from the doctor because of his faith in meditation as a cure.

San Fransisco California

San Fransisco, California, USA


San Francisco, California, USA – The visited San Francisco to talk about the biological effects that occurs during meditation and yoga. The Professor and Physician are trying to understand what we can do to maintain our health in ways that medication can’t do.

Dr Frederick Hecht, MD (Professor of Medicine, University of California San Fransisco) has seen that which meditation there is an effect on the cytokine gene that resides in tissue. He is aware that sometimes the state of mind can have a direct effect and create changes in the state of human body. These changes effect one another by allowing certain genes to be more expressed or activated.

Cytokine Gene.jpg

Image of a Cytokine Gene


Genes are what define how we are built and structured. Genes are the deciding factors in what diseases we can inherit and/or develop.

They did studies of meditation using people who were overweight and during these studies they observed direct changes happening on the genes of those patients while meditating. They observed more response to diet and exercise if meditation was included in their health regimen. The genes being affected were those that control inflammatory response.

Oslo Noway.jpg

Oslo, Noway

Oslo, Norway – There is a professor in Oslo Norway that has been studying the genetic effects of meditation and yoga that the documentary goes on to visit.


Professor Fahri Saatcioglu (Department of Molecular Biology, University of Oslo) explains the reason he decided to investigate the effects of meditation is because he learned of the genetic changes happening during studies of meditation. He wanted to understand it further – how it effects us on a molecular level.

The studies Professor Saatcioflu observed directly included people who learned and participated in a yoga program that included gentle yoga postures, powerful breathing exercises called prana yam and meditation. They practice this for two hours once a week.

They included another controlled regimen which was a one hour walk and a one hour of listening to music to the program to observe their effects as well.

They took blood from the patients, isolated the immune cells, then compared the gene expression patterns before and after the above listed practice for the controlled regimen. Based on the blood they collected they observed that there were approximately 4x more genes affected by the yogic practice than the controlled regimen listed above.

Meditation and Yoga directly affects our gene expression which is more than gentle exercise can do.

Jodhpur Rajasthan India 1

Fort Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India – google images

Jodhpur, Rajasthan, India – The documentary visits back in India to follow up with a follower of Guru Siyag, named Buddha Ram ji, to find out how the HIV recovery is going which happens to be 4 years after the initial interview. He states that he he has “become aware of the reality” after connecting with Guru Siyag. He says that meditation and yoga has helped him become more mentally and physically stronger. He is now running 10 KM in 44 minutes. He states he is still HIV + and hasn’t taken medication for many years AND hasn’t visited a doctor for the illness. He states that he didn’t believe Guru Siyag at first but continued meditating because he had no other choice and thought he was going to die. He now believes that meditation is the answer for all problems. He states that during meditation he undergoes “khichari mudra” where his tongue rolls up and goes to the pharynx which leads to a cold sensation throughout the entire body.


Guru Ram lal ji Siyag (at the time of the movie 89 years old) teaches Siddha Yoga Meditation completely free of charge. His only goal in life is to help people.

The film was created by Chayan Vinayak Goswami.

The Vet, Invisible People and The Trolley

So the statement in my previous blog post still rings true. I’ve wanted desperately to keep this job, do well at it and so far that has been happening. I haven’t come up with an excuse why I can’t do what I need to do and I have been pressing forward with life. There is no other option!

Although, riding to work on public transportation has not been what I thought it would be. I am not walking as much as I thought I would and it’s taking on average two and a half to three hours one-way every day I work. When driving in a car from home to work only takes thirty minutes. How does thirty minutes turn into three hours?

I’ve learned quickly; public transportation sucks.


Let’s start with the positive: I am lucky enough to have a ride to work in the mornings. So the morning three hour commute starting at 5AM has been cut down to meeting at the gas station at 6:45AM. Which to me is a HUGE blessing and I am extremely thankful for it.


Walking has always been a great way for me to think about my life, reflect on things and come up with solutions. I thought taking public transportation would follow a similar mental process. I was so wrong. I was so so wrong.

I have found myself falling into negative thought patterns since I’ve started taking the bus and trolley. My three hours one-way is filled with thoughts of anger and distaste. My patience for pretty much everything has lessened and I find myself constantly snapping on people without much hesitation.

My FIRST day on the trolley and bus was like the first day of an adventure. I was extremely observant of my surroundings, had a smile on my face, said my “excuse me” and “thank you’s.” Everyone looked at me strange and the ambiance of both the bus and trolley was that of a grey life-sucking cloud. Everyone looked miserable and annoyed. I didn’t understand why. The ride to work was less pleasant than I anticipated and so on my ride home I decided to keep to myself.

I put my ear buds in and stared out the window at the scenery flying by. As I sat there I noticed an older man in my peripheral talking loudly and rocking his entire body back and forth. I assumed he was speaking to someone sitting near him. Maybe a friend? As the trolley ride went on I noticed he approached people thinking they were someone other than who they were. His face would flood with the expression of disappointment when discovering he was wrong. As he walked away would people smile with unease. That smile that tells you they are forcing themselves to be polite despite how awkward they feel.

The older man got louder, moved from seat to seat and eventually I discovered he wasn’t speaking to anyone that any of us could see. He was speaking to people that weren’t there. He ranted the entire trolley ride about being a whore for the government, sacrificing life, and rambling on about things I couldn’t distinguish the meaning of. Maybe residual military musings? Who knows.

I can’t express the distress and anguish on this mans face. From listening to his words I determined he had to be a veteran and from the appearance of his age he could very easily be a Vietnam veteran.


My wonderful and amazing partner is a veteran and he is the only person I can talk to that will understand what I saw and speak knowledgably about it. Our veterans aren’t being taken care of properly and it hurts to see it. It hurts to know I can’t help that man. The first piece of advice was “Don’t talk to him. Don’t make eye contact. Leave him be. He could hurt you and he wouldn’t know any better.”

That was my introduction to the public transit system and I have to say… I’m upset. I’m not mad at the vet, I’m not mad at the people I’m sharing this transportation with… I’m mad that there is seemingly no help. That veteran’s needs have been neglected for so long if anyone WAS to try and implement help at this point it would be useless. He is long gone. He is fighting a mental fight NONE of us average Americans know anything about. His woe’s outweigh mine by the tons and I can’t do anything about it.

As the days go by and I spend more time involved in this three hour long daily commute my distaste for the way things are, is uncontrollably growing. I haven’t discussed everything I have witnessed in this blog entry but I have seen more than I expected to see. I was unaware of what struggles people around me are going through. My own are difficult enough and spending all this time on public transportation seems to only be growing the anger in my gut.

I am trying to pull myself together and change my perception. Perception is everything when it comes to “reality.” So… I’m trying; meditations, hypnosis tapes, positive-affirmation tapes, happy goal-oriented conversations with my amazing partner (he who has more resilience than anyone else I know) and whatever else I can come up with. But I have to say… It’s not really working and my patience is growing thin.

I’ve got to find a way to keep my mind bright and positive somehow. I don’t know how, but that is my goal. We’ll see how it goes and what I come up with…

P.s. Yesterday was a New Moon and we’re headed towards a Full Moon. Now is the time to ask the universe for what you want. The moon is waxing. 🙂 I’m making my request and let’s see if the universe hears it.