Our World in Miracles I – The Affirmation Spot for Monday August 3, 2009

Ray’s Daily Affirmation:

“My world is conceived in miracles and today I remember to see them.”
(Choose from 100s mp3 affirmations at The Affirmation Spot)

Today is the first in a series of posts where I plan to highlight some of the amazing miracles around us. It’s easy to take things for granted, but our world and our Universe is a pretty amazing place.

While our goals and dreams and lives are very important, they are not the only thing going on. It’s always refreshing to step back and watch the miracles in action.

Sunrise over the Atlantic Ocean at Ocean Park, Maine (to Pachelbel’s Canon in D Major)

Sunset into the Pacific Ocean off southern California

The Earth rising over the moon as videotaped by the Japanese Lunar orbiter Kaguya in 2007.

Sunrise in orbit taken over eastern Australia by Space Shuttle Discovery in 2006

See the miracles in your world today.

Stay inspired!

Ray

2009 Affirmation

“This year I am absolutely committed to being the person I came here to be!”

India Goes to the Moon – The Affirmation Spot for Wednesday October 22, 2008

Today’s Affirmation:

“Determination…I push my limits and I achieve great things.” (click to hear it now)

Space represents such an opportunity for humanity. It is chance for us to work together on something important to all of us.

As The United States has largely rejected its space heritage in recent decades, other nations have stepped up in its place.

Today India took a major step forward in its space program by launching its first unmanned mission to the Moon. It joins its Asian counterparts Japan and China who already have craft orbiting our nearest celestial neighbor.

India’s craft dubbed Chandrayaan-1 – “Mooncraft” in ancient Sanskrit – lifted off today from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota, India. The launch site is located on India’s southeast coastline near India’s largest city Chennai.

For longtime readers of this blog, you know I love space. It is my belief that space exploration poses challenges and offers economic opportunities that could fundamentally alter how humans interact on Earth.

It is my firm belief that the global war economy – sadly still far and away Earth’s largest industry – could easily be replaced by a global space economy. In fact, I would argue that economic reasons are the primary driver of wars on our planet. Our planet could be fundamentally improved by the substitution of space exploration for war.

Chandrayaan-1’s two-year mission is to provide the most detailed maps ever of Earth’s nearest neighbor and set the stage for landing an unmanned craft on the Moon’s surface by 2012.

Last October Japan successfully placed it’s Kaguya moon vehicle in orbit around the moon (view Earthrise and Earthset videos from Kaguya). The Japanese have set a goal of 2025 for placing a manned mission on the surface of the moon.

China’s Chang’e vehicle has also been orbiting the Moon for nearly a year now. Russia has announced plans to land on the Moon around 2025 and even NASA has announced plans to return by 2020.

This transition to a spacefaring race is a positive step. Just as human beings the world over took pride in the accomplishment of landing humans on the Moon July 20, 1969; everyone can take pride as other nations continue to push the envelope of exploration in our Solar System.

So it is in a spirit of common cause, common hopes, and common dreams that I congratulate India on its accomplishment today. May Chandrayaan-1 expand human knowledge about the Moon and bring closer the day when humans work together to travel the stars.

That’s one giant step for India and one giant leap for humans in space.

Stay inspired!

Ray

Going Back to the Moon: Replacing the Global War Economy – The Affirmation Spot for Sunday November 25, 2007

Welcome to The Affirmation Spot. If this is your first time to the site, be sure to click one of the subscription options (top left) to be notified each time the blog is updated. Thank you for visiting. Tell your your positive-thinking, motivated friends and your not-so-motivated friends about the blog. There is something for everyone.

There are direct links to downloadable mp3 affirmations at The Affirmation Spot.com on the right menu. They are set to music and allow you take positive thoughts with you wherever you go all day. Enjoy today’s post.


moon2.jpgToday’s affirmation is:

“I identify the things and the people that inspire me and I make them the centerpiece of my life.”

What inspires you? What are the big dreams you have for yourself, your family, and humanity? Do you ever take time to visualize them in your mind and think about how to make them reality?

It’s difficult in our work-a-day world to make time for such considerations. Between work and soccer games and dance recitals and bills, making time to define a vision for the next day is sometimes a challenge. Next year? The next 10 years? These can seem like a lifetime away.

Inspiration is one of those human intangibles that causes us look beyond the immediate to something bigger.

The American Heritage dictionary defines inspiration as, “stimulation of the mind or emotions to a high level of feeling or activity.”

Who are the people, what are the ideas, what are the things in your life that inspire you? Consider making a list and keeping it around you as you go through your day.

Some people are inspired by physical activity, the joy of creating, or a challenging puzzle to solve. Others are inspired by a great speech or an inspirational leader delivering a call to action.

Just as individuals need inspiration, so do nations and humanity as a whole. One of the struggles of our present era is that we are so caught up in our petty differences – “the immediate” – that we are not looking at the big picture. Looking to our leaders seems a lost cause because, in many cases, they are the chief purveyors of the immediate. They have no vision for the future or for finding a way through our difficulties to the civilization we are capable of achieving.

We have a global economy that is largely based on war and conflict. Our economies and our technology development are driven by our desire for control of resources and minds rather than aspirations for something more. Developments in our world happen around profit. When asked why we cannot have peace in the world or why we cannot move towards solar power; I often quip that it is because we have not found a way to make peace as profitable as war or charge for sunlight. While a bit of an oversimplification, there is a lot of truth in it.

I’d like us to create a peaceful world for its intrinsic value and out of obvious self-interest. Unfortunately, the fact is that the global economy would collapse tomorrow, if we declared peace today. The interests that control our current global order are not going to allow that and so war (along with the ever-present excuses for it) are a reality until we can develop ways to employ people for peaceful means. 

If we hope to create that world we need to find endeavors so big and all-encompassing that they inspire coming generations to look beyond “the immediate”. These endeavors must fire our imaginations and be on a scale that consumes all the petty struggles that now divide us. They must drive innovation that can employ billions around the planet. 

There are very few things that could conceivably replace the global conflict economy. The two that immediately come to mind are solutions to our energy situation and space exploration.

Space exploration once inspired Americans and humanity. In the 1960s, the race to the moon, the moon landings, and even the near-disaster of Apollo 13 riveted the world’s attention. It truly brought a sense of “us” rarely seen in this world. When we see the world as “us” hurtling through space on a tiny marble in a vast blackness (the reality of our situation) rather than “us” versus “them” for some transient benefit or philosophical point, our perspective changes.

Ask any of the men and women who have been to outer space, regardless of nationality or faith, what their main take-away was. Nearly without exception, they will convey a sense of how small our world and its problems are compared to that vast blackness. You hear them talk about this “tiny marble” hovering in space.

Space exploration holds the potential to grant more and more of us the wisdom of the “tiny marble paradigm” and to replace the war economy. To me, that seems like two very positive steps in the right direction.

orion_spacecraft.jpgDuring my recent visit to NASA, I was privileged to take part in “Lunch with an Astronaut”. Retired shuttle astronaut, Jon McBride, spoke confidently about plans to send humans back to the moon by 2018. The program dubbed Project Constellation is part of the space strategy announced by President Bush in January 2004 called Vision for Space Exploration. The goal is create a permanent human presence on the moon by 2020 and to use it as a launching point for manned missions to Mars and beyond.

The cost, the technology, and the sheer scale of a project to explore and populate the solar system is far beyond the means of any single nation – even The United States. Such an endeavor would have to be a global effort and would be the beginnings of the kind of global economic and philosophical shift I am describing.

The first step is to convince the U.S. Congress and other governmental bodies around the world to work together and fund such a project. Our leaders have, unfortunately, demonstrated a decided lack of vision in this area for many years. After the ‘hey day’ of the space race, nations and people lost interest in space.

We were drawn back into “the immediate”. We had no time for grand visions. The argument has been for 30 years that we have problems here on Earth and money spent on space takes away from our ability to address those issues. This view holds space exploration as a resource drain rather than a resource provider – true to this point.

The money we took from the space program has not resolved those issues we argued it was needed to address. The problems are still very much with us, and we traded in our vision of something more.  

Just as we need inspiration as individuals to move ahead in life, we need inspiration, challenges, and goals as a species to excel. Our leaders need to take John Kennedy’s example and inspire us to do great things again. We need to allow ourselves the guilty pleasure of being inspirable again.

It will take time, but I believe everyone can have what they want and need from this endeavor. The markets and the corporations can make their profits on something positive rather than death and destruction. Science and technology can grow to new heights to meet the challenges of space exploration rather than expending its genius on better ways to kill.  The people of the world can be employed by industries engaged in the single largest endeavor in history.

earth_space3.jpgI am not naive enough to suggest that human selfishness, greed, and criminality will suddenly evaporate in the dawn of this new day. However, I do believe we can all enjoy a saner, safer world firmly planted in the “tiny marble paradigm” rather than the self-absorbed, dogma-driven ego. 

Are we going back to the moon? I sure hope so! Can you imagine how inspiring it will be to watch the first humans live on the moon or set foot on Mars? We need to gain back our sense of adventure and push ourselves to new heights – as individuals and as a civilization.

Take a few minutes today to create your list of things that inspire you and make them a centerpiece of your life. And every once in awhile, give some thought to what might inspire our world to be something more than it is now. Make your voice heard and let’s bring a more positive world to fruition.

Peace…

Ray
The Affirmation Spot.com

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Amazing NASA – The Affirmation Spot for Thursday October 11, 2007

rocket_night_launch.jpg The past two days have been absolutely amazing! April and I spent the day yesterday touring NASA and reliving much of the history and glory days of the U.S. space program.

We were honored to attend a lunch with retired shuttle astronaut Jon McBride who provided a hopeful outlook for the future of the space program with plans to go back to the moon for good and then on to Mars by 2030.

Today we were making our way through another theme park (the third in four days) and decided to leave and drive to the ocean. We didn’t set out to wind up at Cocoa Beach. It was one of those synchronicity things.

We had dinner and went out to the beach to enjoy the evening. There was rocket launch scheduled for this evening and we thought Cocoa Beach might be a good place to view, as it is only a few miles south of Cape Canaverel.

We were not disappointed! About 30 minutes after dark, the entire northern sky lit up and the rocket slowly rose into view. The rocket was moving so fast that the sound of the launch and all subsequent sound did not reach us until as much a 30 seconds after the rocket had passsed a certain point. In other words the sound in the sky was coming from well behind the visual on the rocket. It was astounding.

I speak about goals and dreams and such often on this blog. The Affirmation Spot is all about producing audio pieces to help people achieve things in life. I cannot remember the last time I was as inspired as I have been these past two days during my contact with the space program.

It is so much of what we need so much more of in this world. We need a bigger vision that is centered on pulling together to accomplish something bigger than ourselves. Space can do that! It has the potential to replace war as the world’s number one industry. It has the potential to expand our minds and our possibilities. It reminds us that our petty differences on this planet are miniscule in comparison to our common goals and dreams.

If you ever have the chance, I hope you will visit NASA and that you will contact your elected officials to support this important program for the future of this nation and humanity.

May this Thursday find you peaceful and prosperous.

Ray 

The Affirmation Spot

P.S. – Be watching for a large number of new affirmations coming to The Affirmation Spot in November in December. Sports, Learning, and Personal Empowerment will be the key categories with many new additions coming.

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