Monthly Archives: July 2012

What? Why? How? Because.

by Michelle Maynard Koenig
July 31, 2012

Question everything. Learn something. Answer nothing.”
Euripides (Greek playwright, c. 480-406 BC)

How often do we witness the barrage of the infamous question from children: “Why?” Children so intrigued by the world and everything contained therein that their “why’s” are non-stop. How often do we end up at a point where all we can respond with is “because?” That simple response doesn’t stop a child’s unrelenting search for answers … “but why?”

May I take lesson from a child’s curiosity and search for the truth of the Universe and life that compels them to question everything.  Looking back at the history of mankind, there was a time when everyone believed that the world was flat, but they were all wrong. I realize that the number of people who believe in an idea is no measure of the truth or falsehood of that idea.  The only way I can tell whether an idea is true or not is by looking at the facts and examining the evidence for myself, and from there judge the same against my own reason and moral code, instead of judging it against the reason and moral code of others.

“Believe nothing, no matter where you read it, or who said it, no matter if I have said it, unless it agrees with your own reason and common sense.” ~Buddha

This keeps me from taking the personal inventory of others.  Who I am, today, is largely a reflection of where I have been in life, what I have experienced (negative and positive), and the beliefs that I have formed therefrom.   What right do I have to impose my answers on everyone else, especially if those answers do not make sense to everyone else?

What I have learned thus far is that if I am not authentic and truthful to myself, a wall will be built up around me that will eventually have to be torn down again. Life always has been able to show me my own faults. To be authentic; to come from my own truth and experience;  and not buy into something outside myself blindly, is the path I choose to take in life.  May I always have the courage to question everything: “what,” “why,” “how?”  May I always have the courage to reflect on the deeper truth of my reality:  “Is this really true to what I know?”

May we all be encouraged to choose the pathway in life that “fits” within our own reasoning and moral code; may we find our own path(s) in life through self-understanding. May be we be like children and question everything!

You Only Have One Life To Live

by Donnalynn Civello

… this time around.

So you want to make sure you really LIVE IT. “No regrets” is the name of the game.

So often times we keep ourselves back from truly experiencing life. For example, we confine ourselves to an overly-burdensome work schedule (that seldom yields the desired payoff we expect) yet we trade years of our lives for many late nights sitting at an empty desk in front of a computer screen.

We put off our happiness for some “future date” e.g. “I will take that vacation at the end of the year.” “I will leave this horrible job after I have been here at least 2 years.” “When I have enough money saved, I will start to think about what I really want to do with my life.” Sound familiar?

Why wait to experience all that life has to offer? What are you waiting for? Things do not miraculously get better as you get older. You do not “gain” more time, flexibility or opportunities as the years unfold. You do not gain less obligation as time goes on either. The more set in your ways you become, the harder it usually is to uproot and explore yourself and the world around you.

We mistakenly think our responsibility in life is to everyone else. It is not. Your only responsibility in life is TO YOURSELF. If you do not do the things you want to do because your significant other or parent or friend tells you not to do it, then you have no one to blame but yourself. You are the one in control of your life. No one has control over you unless you give it to them. Why give your power over to anyone to limit your experience of life. As soon as you give control of your life over to someone else, you have lost yourself.

Life is too short to not live it the way you want to. It is too short to not see the world. It is too short to not spend time with those you love. It is too short to sit home night after night in front of the television watching mindless sitcoms. Get yourself off your sofa and get yourself into your life. Explore what that means to you. A unfulfilling life is simply not worth living.


Donnalynn Civello is the Executive Director of Ethereal Wellness – yoga + nutrition solutions for mind, body and soul – She is a Certified Holistic Health Coach, CHHC, AADP and Ayurvedic Nutritionist and RYT Yoga Teacher in New York City. 

What Goes Around, Comes Around

“This universal energy, that makes up everything in our existence, moves in a circular nature, which means that it returns back to itself.” Joe Rapisarda


The old adage, “what goes around, comes around” simplifies the concept. Applying this to me and my life,  it is clear to see that whatever I put out into the Universe and give to others, I receive back. Whether I am loving, honest and compassionate, or hateful, deceitful, and malicious, my actions in this moment and every moment is the catalyst creating my Karma.   I find it worthwhile before acting or reacting to a person, place or thing, whether in business, relationships, family, nature, etc., to just stop and breathe.

To read more on Karma, Joe Rapisarda has written a book entitled, “Awaken Your Power,” that is very insightful and is of great assistance for those looking inward for awareness.

Present Moment, Wonderful Moment

Breathing in, I calm my body.

Breathing out, I smile.

Dwelling in the present moment,

I know this is a wonderful moment.

Breathing in, I know that I am breathing in.

Breathing out, I know

as the in-breath goes deep,

the out-breath grows slow.

Breathing in makes me calm.

Breathing out brings me ease.

With the in-breath, I smile.

With the out-breath, I release.

Breathing in, there is only the present moment.

Breathing out, it is a wonderful moment.

In, Out.

Deep, Slow

Calm, Ease

Smile, Release

Present moment, Wonderful moment.

(from The Plum Village Chanting & Recitation Book, compiled by Thich Nhat Hanh and the Monks and Nuns of Plum Village; Art collage, “The Present Moment”, courtesy of Martha Marshall.)

Peace of Simplicity

by Michelle Maynard Koenig

Many say that it would be nice
to have a peaceful, stormless mind
when contention and angst connive
to conjure conflict and fears alight.

The gift’s at hand, it is within.
Peace of simplicity’s joyous grin,
serenity’s illumination,
returns one’s truth of life again.

Allowing love to merge with all,
friends and foe, says Samael Aun Weor,
protects against drama and brawls,
silencing the dark caterwauls.

The sun of truth rises in the human being and illuminates his world when he lifts his mind from the darkness of ignorance and selfishness into the light of wisdom and altruism. – “Aztec Christic Magic,” by Samael Aun Weor (1917-1977)

(Photo courtesy of Curiosities By Dickens.)

The Reach

by Michelle Maynard Koenig

To the infinite unknown I reach,
easier today than days long past,
further tomorrow than the day at hand,
within a divine Universe of abundant

Photo courtesy of The Lonely Dancer