Honor and Dignity – Priceless
reflections of those who live in virtue and values
The other day I was listening to an interview of a man who traveled with the body of a deceased American Soldier from Iraq all the way to his burial place in the United States . Along the journey he interviewed personnel responsible for the proper care and burial of this soldier. These bodies are coming home from battle have seen combat and need a lot of work to make them presentable to the families. And most times this is impossible.
What really moved me was the level of pride and honor all of the people had who worked within the logistical side of this grisly and often thankless job. One woman had a particularly poignant story. She was shining the brass buttons on a deceased soldier's uniform in which he would be buried in. As she did with such care, she remarked “how honored she was to be part of the soldiers coming home to his final resting place”. The interviewer said “I am sure the family will appreciate the amazing job your are doing there” with out hesitation or pride she replied “his family will never see my work, he is being cremated”.
I was deeply moved by her level of honor, dignity and commitment to excellence. It inspired me to reflect, dig deep and find my personal meaning behind all of this. It seems to me that in a world that pays such homage to tabloid twits and the ultra rich that the people that don't seek recognition that give of themselves willing and expect nothing in return often go unseen and unappreciated. People of true honor and dignity find no purpose in press, lavish lifestyle, flashiness or even recognition for that matter. They simply act from a place of deep and solid virtue. They show up on time, they keep their word, they help when needed, they fix what's broken, they pick up what's been dropped and along they way they respect the honor and dignity of others.
I wonder how I can improve my honor and dignity. I have seen these values in my grandfather. He and my grandmother live a simple life on a lake in Northern Wisconsin . He collected social security in case they needed it but, found that they did not need it and attempted to send it back to the government for somebody else to use. When I first heard this story I was shocked. He earned that money. Why would he not just take it? But, then I realized that he comes from a place of rock solid values and virtue. And I am proud to say, this is the stock I come from. I can only hope that I can live up to his example.
Today I will examine my core values and recognize the virtue in others. And in so, I will celebrate today that the world is filled with good people with honor and dignity that is priceless.
Live well and have an excellent week.
Steviva Brands, Inc.
Seeing The World As It Is
The truth is what it is.
It's neither good nor bad.
It's simple reality.
Tailor your concepts to fit reality,
instead of trying to stuff reality into your concepts.
No matter what you believe,
it won't change the facts.
If we all worked on the assumption
that what is accepted as true is really true,
there would be little hope of advancement in the world.
Facts do not cease to exist because they are ignored.
If fifty-million people say a foolish thing, it's still a foolish thing.
Successful people are realistic
and aren't trapped by false appearances.
Stay realistic on the road to success.
Yoga - Yo Gotta Try It!
Yoga offers many benefits including: improved flexibility, posture, balance, circulation and coordination; increased self awareness; reduced risk of injury for other activities and relaxation and stress reduction. With all this going for it... don't you think it's time you give yoga a try?
Yoga is an ancient philosophy or discipline that originated in India. Most people think of yoga as stretching, breathing or a meditation activity only to be enjoyed by people who eat granola and wear sandals. The truth is yoga has many benefits that can be enjoyed by everyone. The concepts of yoga can be difficult to translate and often refer to concepts rather than concrete definitions.
There are three main types of yoga but there are different ways to practice each type. Hatha yoga is the most popular in the U.S. These are the three types of Yoga:
- Japa refers to the yoga of the mind. It's practiced with meditation and chanting. This type of yoga is more of a spiritual or religious type of yoga and doesn't involve stretching and flexibility.
- Karma yoga deals with healing and emotions and is also practiced through meditation. The emphasis is the effect of a person's actions or conduct and the positive effects towards others. This is also a more spiritual or religious type of yoga.
- Hatha yoga is considered the physical yoga and is usually practiced by stretching and breathing but can also include some chanting. Most people are only familiar with 2 of the stages of hatha yoga but there are actually 8 different stages. The first 2 steps (yama and niyama) deal with ethics, morals and personal conduct. The 3rd step (asana) is the stretching and flexibility portion and the 4th step (pranayama) has to do with controlling breathing. The 3rd and 4th steps are most commonly known in the U.S. The next three steps help you control your senses (pratyahara), concentration (dharana) and meditation (dhyana). The last stage (samadhi) is sort of a combination of the previous stages and results in reaching a new spiritual level.
Although the different styles of Hatha yoga may use the same positions (known as postures or asanas), they can be practiced differently with the emphasis changing from breathing technique (known as pranayama), the alignment of your body or the movement from one asana to another. Below are just a few of the different styles of Hatha yoga named for their founders:
Iyengar yoga focuses on the how the asanas are done, paying close attention to the alignment of the body, strength and flexibility. The goal is to balance and strengthen the body and improve muscle imbalances and posture.
Ashtanga (or Astanga) yoga uses a fast paced series asanas (sort of like "circuit yoga") that are designed to improve strength and flexibility but also to warm up the muscles. This is less relaxing than Iyengar yoga but can be an excellent workout.
Bikram yoga, which is becoming more popular, is done in a warmer room and uses 26 different asanas. This type of yoga is also designed to stretch the muscles and connective tissue (ligaments and tendons).
Just learning the asanas and practicing can improve your flexibility, reduce stress and prevent injuries. Practicing asanas and pranayamas requires concentration and over time this will lead to an increased self-awareness. All of these things are helpful for athletes, people who exercise, a mother of 3, students, busy professionals... basically anyone.
This information and other information on this site is intended for general reference purposes only and is not intended to address specific medical conditions. This information is not a substitute for professional medical advice or a medical exam. Prior to participating in any exercise program or activity, you should seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health professional. No information on this site should be used to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any medical condition.
Living Like Water
The journey of water as it flows upon the earth can be a mirror of our own paths through life. Water begins its residence on Earth as it falls from the sky or melts from ice and cascades down a mountain into a tributary or stream. In the same way, we come into the world and begin our lives on Earth. Like a river that flows within the confines of its banks, we are born with certain defining characteristics that govern our identity. We are born in a particular time and place, into a specific family, and with certain gifts and challenges. Within these parameters, we move through life, encountering many twists, turns, and obstacles along the way—just as a river flows.
Water is a great teacher that shows us how to move through the world with grace, ease, determination, and humility. When a river breaks at a waterfall, it gains energy and moves on. As we encounter our own waterfalls, we may fall hard, but we always keep going. Water can inspire us not to become rigid with fear or hold fast to what is familiar. Water is brave and does not waste time clinging to its past but flows onward without looking back. At the same time, when there is a hole to be filled, water does not flee from it, fearful of the dark; instead, it humbly and bravely fills the empty space. In the same way, we can face the dark moments of our life rather than running away from them.
Eventually, a river will empty into the sea. Water does not hold back from joining with a larger body, nor does it fear a loss of identity or control. It gracefully and humbly tumbles into the vastness by contributing its energy and merging without resistance. Each time we move beyond our individual egos to become part of something bigger, we can try our best to follow the lead of the river.
Sugar Free Low Carb All Natural Hazelnut Cherry Tart
Carbs Per Serving: 6.3 g
Prep Time:<45 minutes
Skill Level: moderate
Ingredients Pastry Crust:
1/2 cup - (100 g) soy flour
1/8 tsp - (0.5 ml) salt
2 oz - (60 g) ground roast hazelnuts or almonds
2 Tbsp - (30 ml) Steviva Blend or equivalent
2 oz - (50 g) butter
1 egg yolk
2 tsp - (10 ml) water
4 egg yolks
1/4 cup (50 g) Steviva Blend or equivalent
1 tsp - (5 ml) vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups - (450 ml) cream
3 tsp - (15 ml) gelatine
2 Tbsp - (30 ml) water
2 lb - (1 kg) no sugar added canned or fresh cherries (lowest glycemic effect) or berries of choice for variety
2 tsp - (10 ml) gelatine
2 tsp - (10 ml) rum
1. Sift soy flour and add all dry ingredients together, with the Steviva Blend or equivalent in the centre, on a pastry board.
2. Add the butter (softened), egg yolk, and water. Work the liquids into the Steviva Blend or equivalent, until it is creamy.
3. Now work in the soy flour mixture, as you would for any sweet pastry.
4. Press the dough into a greased cupcake or muffin tin. Prick the base of the pastry all over.
5. Refrigerate for 30 mins, then cook in a moderate oven (375F or (190C for 15 to 20 mins (until golden brown)
1. Put egg yolks, Steviva Blend or equivalent and vanilla into a bowl and beat until thick and creamy.
2. Heat cream carefully until almost boiling.
3. Combine the two mixtures, beating until smooth, then add the result to the top of a double boiler and simmer until it thickens (STIR CONSTANTLY).
4. Dissolve the gelatine in the water, and add to the cream mixture, stirring well until it is well mixed.
5. Allow this mixture to cool completely before adding to the pastry case. Refrigerate until it sets.
1. Soak the cherries in Steviva Blend or equivalent for 20 minutes. Drain and and reserve 1 cup (250 ml) of the syrup.
2. Arrange the pitted cherries artistically over the top of the tart.
3. Put the reserved syrup, gelatine and rum (we usually use cherry brandy or kirsch) into a saucepan and heat (stirring) until gelatine dissolves.
4. Cool the liquid and pour over the cherries. Refrigerate until set.
Don't be put off by the complexity of the recipe -- it is well worth the effort.
Serving Size: 1 tart
Total Calories: 94
Calories Per Serving: 94
Total Fat: 6g
Saturated Fat: 2g
Total Carbohydrates: 9.2g
Carbohydrates Per Serving: 9.2g
Dietary Fiber: 4g
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