WHAT I CHOOSE.

There are many things that I choose on a daily basis, here are some examples:

I choose…..

  • who I want to become friends with.
  • what to read.
  • what to eat.
  • where to go shop.
  • how I do my hair.
  • what I wear.
  • what to watch on television.
  • what music to listen to.
  • where to go for dinner.
  • what websites to visit.
  • when I go for a walk.
  • when I go to bed.
  • when to relax and unwind.
  • when to have a cup of coffee, tea or alcoholic beverage.
  • when to be a listener and when to be a talker.
  • what religious ideologies to believe.
  • to become vegan.
  • to practice saving the lives of animals by becoming vegan.
  • the place in which I live.
  • the job that I do.
  • the day I decided to live my authentic life.

The one thing that many people believe that I chose – was my sexuality.  THAT IS SOMETHING I DID NOT CHOOSE – that specific ‘thing’ about me, was something I was born with.  I didn’t, one day, suddenly decide to choose that I liked people of the same-sex.  I don’t believe the writings of any religious denomination and what was written.  Therefor – you can’t preach what YOU believe onto me.  If you believe there is a God – and you have an issue with my sexuality – blame HIM, not me.

People need to STOP projecting their religious beliefs (or choices) onto others.  Nothing good comes from telling others that the way they live their lives and how they were born is wrong.  Most importantly – your religious CHOICES should not have any impact on civil rights.  There should always be a separation of what you choose to believe religiously and government policies.

When YOU project your beliefs onto your children – it only hinders them and may potentially kill them.  Instead encourage your children to explore and to have different viewpoints, thoughts and to be their own individual.

My heart goes out to Tyrone Unsworth, from Brisbane, Australia and so many others who have taken their own lives due to bullying because of their sexuality.

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Together, we can make the world a more positive one!

KINDNESS IS NOT A SIGN OF WEAKNESS.

It is inevitable – as we are born, so shall we die.  There was a time I feared death so much I would sink into a deep depression, for different reasons.  Religion taught me to fear death because of what we did during the time we lived.  Being bad and going against ‘the word of God’ would land you in Hell, where you would burn to infinity.  For a long time, I thought I was going to burn for eternity because I lived a sinful life as I broke some of God’s rules but mainly for the curse of being born homosexual.

Needless-to-say, I learned a better way than the fearful tactics of organized religion.  I am not hateful to those who believe and practice organized religion, as long as they don’t impose their views onto me.  I learned that being agnostic was the best way I could describe myself in terms of spirituality.

An agnostic is one who believes it impossible to know anything about God or about the creation of the universe and refrains from commitment to any religious doctrine. An atheist is one who denies the existence of a deity or of divine beings.

How can I commit to something that offers no proof?  What I do believe, is that the world in which we live in is magnificent, majestic and complicated.  There are scientific explanations of how we came to be – I understand that and believe those ideas. But, I also believe there is something more unexplainable, spiritual and much more bigger than what we can explain.  I guess that is what people believe to be God.

Whatever our beliefs are in regards to how we came to be, shouldn’t we have a fundamental belief that we should all be respected, cared for, loved and taken care of?  Shouldn’t life and living be that simple?  Imagine if we took the time to not judge the homeless man on the street or shaming someone for being fat, a woman, gay, disabled, native or black?

There is nothing wrong with showing kindness – IT IS NOT A SIGN OF WEAKNESS.  Showing kindness is confirmation of the strength and love we have within us.  What is more full-filling than helping someone in need without thinking about what we can get in return?  Imagine the positive change we can instil in others when we give kindness.  By giving of ourselves – we can potential save lives.  Imagine the one day we happen to reach out to someone who craves any type of love, that we change their mind in taking their own lives?

You may think you have nothing to offer – but giving of ourselves doesn’t only have to be of the materialistic nature.  You can show kindness by giving someone your ear (not literally), I’m talking about listening to them.  Being present and acknowledging what they are saying without any judgments. How about offering a smile when you look at a stranger?  So many of us have become disconnected, we don’t engage with one another anymore because of modern technology.  We are constantly on our phones updated our FaceBook status or sharing pictures on Instagram that we forget to be present and in the moment of the company we are with.

Take a moment and think about what positive change you can create in the world with all the kindness you have within you.  What can you do to make the lives of those around you better?  Maybe your kindness, love, compassion and caring comes from the humour you provide to others.  Maybe it’s your empathy, sincerity, honesty and your ability to be the most authentic person you can be.

Again, I reiterate – KINDNESS IS NOT A SIGN OF WEAKNESS.  It’s a sign that you are present, connected, authentic, compassionate, caring and full of love to give to others.

Together, we can make the world a more positive one!

Path To Love

I AM…..

I am FORGIVENESS

I am COMPASSIONATE

I am SILLY

I am FUNNY

I am HOMOSEXUAL

I am in love with the EARTH

I am an activist for ANIMALS

I am VEGAN

I am not PERFECT

I am a good FRIEND

I am AUTHENTIC

I am LIGHT

I am NATURE

I am TRUTHFUL

I am an ARTIST

I am a LOVER

I am COMFORTABLE

I am CONTENT

I am POSITIVE

I am HOPEFUL

I am LOVE

I am GOD

Don’t allow the negative perceptions of others determine how you see yourself.  Once you are comfortable in your own skin, it will not matter how others see yourself as long as you know how much you shine!

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MY TRIALS and TRIBULATIONS IN WANTING ACCEPTANCE.

I remember a time in my life where everything I did was to either please friends, family or anyone who would pay attention.  My behaviours, the way I dressed, how I acted all depended on how others viewed me and how they would accept me.  If treating someone like crap or gossiping about another person would benefit me or garner me acceptance, I did not have a problem doing either.  There were moments when I caught myself bullying others in order to avoid being bullied myself.  Why should I be in the line of fire when I was able to put someone else there?

In high school, I clearly remember inflicting cruel words on another student.  Her name was Marla and she wasn’t very popular.  She was what many considered ‘a nerd’.  She didn’t wear clothing that most of us wore, she wasn’t very social and didn’t have many friends.  She also wore a headgear which really made her stand out.  I don’t quite remember what I said but, it was cruel and unjust.  I remember regretting what I said immediately after I said it but I didn’t let the ‘cool’ kids see my regret besides, they were too busy laughing at what I said to Marla.  I visibly upset Marla, who quickly scurried and disappeared down the hall.

Did my words have a lasting impact on Marla?  Could what I have said be the words that pushed Marla over the edge?  Did what I say further encompass Marla with despair, depression and loneliness?  I think of Marla quite often and imagine myself apologizing to her whether she remembers that moment or not.  My heart aches at the cruelty I inflicted towards Marla.

I think about the times I used many derogatory words to describe others – probably to deflect the hurtful words that I was being called.  My cruelty towards others was a way to mask my pain and a way to escape in not dealing with my sexuality and authenticity.  In addition to treating others with cruelty in order to be accepted, I managed to find another means of escape and acceptance in alcohol.

I escaped the woes of being a teenager, my sexuality, my father’s abuse and reality with alcohol.  Wanting to be accepted creates strange bedfellows.  Alcohol was a great escape, so much so that there were moments in my life that I can’t even recall or remember.  It is quite embarrassing when people from the past recall stories of things I did that I don’t even remember.

I had such a huge craving and desire to be accepted that I not only treated others like garbage but, I also treated myself like garbage.  I had no respect for others so why would I have any self-worth or self-respect?  I can’t pinpoint the exact moment in my life when this changed but, I am glad that it did.

Am I still seeking acceptance from others?  I am seeking acceptance but in a completely different way.  I want acceptance in the positivity I want to create in the world.  I want acceptance in the LOVE that I want to spread into the world.  I don’t want to inflict any emotional or physical pain on anyone.  Today, I imagine how it would feel like to be treated without respect, without love, without compassion and with only with judgments – I remember the moments in my life when I lived without love, without compassion and only judgments, it was very lonely.  I never want to be responsible for someone’s withdrawal from life and from a social connection.

If I had the opportunity to see Marla today – I would take it with open arms and apologize.  If this opportunity never comes, then my apology comes in form of the goodness and the love I will continue to spread.  I will be kind, considerate and compassionate and I will always remember that we are all Marla in one way or another.

Live with love, kindness and without judgment and you will truly be accepted.

Together, we can make the world a more positive one!

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HOW DO YOU IDENTIFY YOURSELF?

If you had to write a brief description of yourself, what would you say about yourself?  What are your greatest attributes?  What are the things you don’t enjoy about yourself?  Have you really ever thought about how others see you?  Do you even care?

I’m going to take a look at these questions and answer them as honestly as I can. 

What are my greatest attributes?

My loyalty, my passion, drive and desire to create positive change into the world, my empathy, my honesty and sincerity.

What are some things I don’t enjoy about myself? 

I like everything about myself.  I like the direction my life took.  I love that I advocate for the ethical treatment of animals.  I love that I have made the choice to become vegan.  I love that I think with my heart.  I love my strong convictions in creating positive change into the world.  I love being in love.  I love learning and growing.

Do I care about what others think of me?

The only person that matters in my life is ME.  Without trying to create the best possible me – I would not be able to motivate others into creating positive change in the world.  I do care about how other people view me – especially if they view me in a negative way.  I encourage feedback in order to ensure I become a better person.  What I don’t care for is when people make judgments about me.  I don’t care if you do not like what I am wearing, the colour of my eyes or hair, that I have gained a few pounds or that I raise my voice a bit when I am defending the earth, our environment, animals that have no voice or people who are oppressed because they were born with certain uniqueness. 

A brief description about myself:

To expand on what I have said above – my commitment in my life is being the best partner, husband and friend to my partner of 21 years.  I want to continue to advocate for the things I am passionate about (animals, environment and the LGBTQ community).  I want to become a beacon in creating positive change in the world – if I have influenced just one other person to be kind to animals, our planet or to each other – my job is done but I’m not going to stop.  I am comfortable and love living my life in the most authentic way possible.  I am not afraid to share my views about many of the injustices in this world.  I really believe that we should treat others in the same way that we want to be treated.  I am not afraid to be expressive and passionate in my convictions and have been known to get into heated discussions about those passions and beliefs.  I am avid believer that ‘one person can make a difference’ and get quite offended when people say that a problem is too big to solve.  I get annoyed when people also say, “you can’t change the habits or thoughts of so many people.” – I don’t think Martin Luther King Jr., Nelson Mandela, Mother Teresa, Gandhi, Rosa Parks, Jane Goodall, Ingrid Newkirk or so many other influential people thought this way.  Even Adolf Hitler didn’t think this way. 

I believe I am honest, caring, loving and passionate.  I am overly sensitive – which is an amazing attribute considering most people think that being overly sensitive is a negative trait and a sign of weakness.  Sensitivity is a sign of strength and empathy – people who are sensitive can really put themselves in any situation and act to ensure a positive outcome is not too far from reach.

Today, so many people are too concerned about how others see them and are afraid to live an authentic life.  Imagine the changes we can make in the world if people would just live authentic lives.  Imagine if more people cared about the environment, the poor, the ethical treatment of animals, child poverty, income inequality and other issues that are more deserving of our time and efforts.  More people care about Hollywood gossip than the possible extinction of certain animal species.  We can make huge strides in protecting our declining forests, lakes and oceans but we need to raise our voices and we need to raise them LOUD and STRONG!   The time is now.

Together, we can make the world a more positive one!

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WHERE HAVE YOU FOUND LOVE TODAY?

“You can find love everywhere, you just have to be open and receptive of it” – Robert Pavao

Where have you found love today?  I see it everywhere I look;  in the trees, the sky, the birds, other people, the animals around me, in art, in books, in film – it is everywhere.  Why focus on the things that deplete our positive energy when we can enjoy the energy that makes us happy?  Choose to see love, happiness and joy and you will guarantee a life that is authentic and compassionate.

So, I ask you again;  where have you found love today?

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**original art by Robert Pavao** – contact me if you are interested in a print.

Together, we can make the world a more positive one!

 

 

LOVE and FAITH

What guides you through your daily and life challenges?  Money, need for success, career goals, activism, fame or fortune?  FAITH to guide you towards your goals.  Be compassionate, helpful, loving and honest without comprimising who you are.

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Image and photo courtesy of Rob Pavao

Together, we can make the world a more positive one!

WORDS HURT – CHOOSE THEM WISELY.

How often have you made a comment about someone and never really thought of the impact it would have on that person?  Words hurt – I know.

I remember a difficult time in my life where I realized that I was not quite the same as everyone else, I knew there was something different.  I was gay.  The way society, family and religion viewed homosexuality made it very difficult for me to live my true and authentic life.  Why would I publicly admit to being a homosexual when all I heard of the topic was negativity and things like;  your family will turn your back on you, your friends will hate you, you will be beaten, you will die of AIDS and that God didn’t accept gays.  So I decided to live a lie based on what society and religion dictated.

During my life in hiding and not choosing to live my authentic life – I began to hate myself and others who were able to live their authentic lives all because I could not.  I remember being called ‘faggot’, ‘homo’, ‘cocksucker’ and ‘fairy’, I would fiercely deny this and re-assure the people who called me these names that I would never belong to such a deviant group.

Years passed and in order to save myself from a life of depression and possible suicide – I decided that I needed to live my life as my true and authentic self.  I couldn’t change who I was – I know, I’ve tried for 21 years.  I finally allowed myself to feel, live and be the person I was born as.  It was so relieving finally being honest with myself.  But the name-calling didn’t stop.  I heard people use the words faggot, homo, cocksucker, fairy and so many other names that were meant to hurt and demean but, I decided that I needed to start standing up for myself and for other people who were being called these names.

I am not perfect – none of us are…what we need to do is really think about the impact of the words we use and how they affect others.  We are not BITCHES, NIGGERS, FAGGOTS, WHORES, FAIRIES, PAKIS, SAND MONKEYS, DYKES, SPICS, FROGS, FRESH OF THE BOAT, SLUTS, FATSO, LAZY and whatever else we are called.  Those who call us these names are insecure and can’t face their insecurities, that is why they bully and feed off the weakness of those who can’t stand up for themselves.  NO MORE!

It is our responsibility to ensure we stop those who use these hateful and degrading words to demoralize another group.  Imagine a time when you were the topic of bullying/name-calling.  Remember how you felt and let that be your guide to speak out against people doing the same to others.  The easiest way of doing this is to imagine someone calling your mother, brother, sister, aunt, uncle, friend, niece, nephew or anyone you love – these hateful words.  Empathy is powerful.

Together, we can make the world a more positive one!

A TIME TO REFLECT.

This time of year is a time of reflection – a time to look back and reminisce about days, months and years gone by.  For myself – I don’t look at my past with regret as my past was about learning and growing.  Looking at my life now, I can’t believe how much I have changed – all for the greater good.  My blog today is emotionally therapeutic (for me) and I hope that it allows you to perform the same exercise to determine how much you have changed and hopefully for your greater good and for the planet.

Here is a list of what I wanted or desired at the age of 21:

  • To become wealthy.
  • Have a great job that paid really well.
  • Have a really expensive car.
  • Have friends that were influential and wealthy.
  • Buy a big condo or house.
  • Party, party, party.
  • Have expensive clothing.
  • Have expensive furniture.
  • Have a rich partner/boyfriend.
  • Be away from my family.
  • Have the latest gadgets.
  • Travel.
  • Not care for anyone else but myself.

Today – my priorities have changed.  Maybe it’s because I learned that many of the things I wanted would only bring me temporary satisfaction.  I was at a place where I didn’t really like too many people and didn’t really like myself.  I was too busy trying to be liked and to please everyone else but myself.  I only cared about how I looked, what I had and how drunk I was.  Well, that has completely changed (although, I still love my shiraz, but in a completely different way).

What is important to me today and what do I really want……

  • I would love to have friends who don’t judge me on my lifestyle choices (especially being vegan).
  • I want to be more connected to the planet and help her heal.
  • I want people to be authentic about who they really are.
  • I want to live a more sustainable life.
  • I want people to start a REVOLUTION OF LOVE.
  • I would love if people turned off their televisions.
  • I would love if people really thought for themselves and not be distracted by government and corporate lies.
  • I would love if people spread love and positive energy.
  • I love that I value family more than ever before.
  • I don’t need MORE, I need LESS.
  • I am satisfied in whatever I do.
  • I am not plagued by wanting or needing more money or financial wealth.
  • I don’t need a BIG car.
  • I don’t need a BIG house.
  • I don’t need superficial friends who only care about themselves and being distracted.
  • I love those who are eccentric.
  • I love people who don’t conform.
  • I love people who think outside the box and without judgements.
  • I love being GAY.
  • I love being authentic.
  • I love ME.
  • I love animals.
  • I love the planet.

There is no point in thinking about the past anymore – it is gone and there is nothing any of us can do about it.  The past has passed.  There is nothing I can do about the future – I have no idea what will happen.  I don’t enjoy making long-term plans.  I don’t want to work my life away to save money for a future I can’t foresee.  What I can do – is live for this moment.  The moment that is happening right now.  I love that I am expressing myself via the words I am typing right now.  I feel alive, I am in the moment and I am enjoying every minute of it.  Should I die right now – at least I  would have died doing something I love.  I am doing what I am meant to be doing – at this moment, right now.  I am writing these words, every once in a while – glancing at my dog and feeling the warmth of my fire.  I am so glad that I have changed and am living the life that is no-one else’s but my own.

What will you find out about yourself by reflecting on your past?

Together, we can make the world a more positive one!