We Aren’t Enemies, Let’s Stop Acting Like We Are!


Welcome to May everyone. Summer is just around the corner. You haven’t heard from me other than an occasional note since January! I hadn’t noticed how long it had been! For better or worse, my life has taken on more tasks, responsibilities, and focus and I have dearly missed this communication with all of you.

It is my intention this year to transform my life, (and yours if you’re game) to a brilliant expression full of prosperity, ease and wellbeing. Let’s all upgrade.

First, laying some ground rules below.

I was going to write about post pandemic PTSD, but frankly, those of you who have been following me for years know what I’d recommend, i.e. take care of yourself, limit news, meditate, eat well, get good sleep, get outside, move etc.

What is going on is so much deeper than COVID. We are in a major transition to something new. So many authors, teachers, and spiritual leaders have written about moving through these upheavals, attempting to explain how the state of chaos in the world came to be, how it is affecting all of us, and what will happen next.

We have been going through a unique period in our lifetime. Information and events have been exploding into our lives faster than we can adapt to it. Not only the health issues with the pandemic, the political storms, lack of consensus on facts (knowledge commons), and the economic issues from lock downs, but also the effects from the stress caused by it all; more divorces, eating disorders, depression, drinking, and anxiety among them.

The media chooses stories to dwell on, magnify, exaggerate and cover day after day after day, until we feel like the whole world is in some sort of hell. Depending on what source of information you tune into the stories vary widely.

In a true democratic system, there is knowledge commons and there is a base line of consensus for what we are, as a nation, attempting to create, what democracy means, and how the government works. Our disagreements have normally been on what government can do to protect that and how.

We’ve entered, over the last decades, a period where we act like those who have different ideas to solve problems are ignorant, enemies, or just plain evil. Groups, organizations, colleges, media sources, and social media, censor opinions they don’t want to hear; we have lost the ability to hear opposing views.  We have fractured pieces of ‘reality’ wherein extreme conspiracy theories gain millions of followers. There is an abundance of mistrust in the ‘others’. Author Charles Eisenstein noted, “How can we have a democracy if we are being incited to hate each other by the very media we depend on to tell us what is real, what is “news” and what the world is?”  The political party in power tries to repress and censor the opposing party’s views.

Our cultural blemishes have risen to the forefront and are being seized upon by different sides. We live in a story that there are good guys and bad guys, and everyone thinks they are the good guy.

And yet:

  • We are all one in the human family
  • We have all been the good guy and the bad guy
  • In our world there are opposing beliefs in which both are true
  • What we call ‘truth’ shifts with levels of consciousness

The likeliest explanation for the current state, upon the revelation of the destructive stories we’ve been hiding, covering up or ignoring, are hopefully, the last gasps of the most primitive of consciousness, as it raises its ugly head for all to see.

For example, there has always been a percentage of people who are drawn to law enforcement and military because of the sense of power and control it gives them over others. (There are ways to screen out these individuals in the application process with psych tests for social pathology.)

Yet we can’t fix what we aren’t aware of. Those of us in the spiritual community are painfully aware of all the world’s atrocities, from the horrors of war, famine, prisons, devastation of lands, all kinds of violence, to the insidious, subtle discriminations and everyday insults by all manner of journalists, bloggers and everyday people.

When I was young in the 60s and 70s, we were filled with energy and ideas for creating a new world: just, safe, environmentally healthy, with gender equality and healthier food. We saw women were treated unfairly and often as sex objects, minorities experienced deep discrimination from every level, senseless wars, and guns and violence exploded in the streets. We charged forward to change this.

We failed. There are more guns, still wars, more sexualization of young girls, still inequities, and we are less healthy.

We have to tell a new story. One not of good and evil, us versus them, but a culture of compassion, listening, patience, creative problem solving, and understanding. It is time for transformation. We know in our hearts that the way society has been isn’t working, and it’s making us sick. It’s making the Earth sick as well.

And not tell a story of what we’re against. The against position is already coming from behind, a weakened state that makes opposite forces strengthen more. Instead of pushing against opinions, beliefs or thoughts, manifest a powerful new vision that encompasses a beautiful story.

Seeing two young children fighting over a toy, rather than make one right and one wrong, an effective parent will work out a solution that reduces upsetting emotions, makes them feel understood, and invites them to help come up with a peaceful one. We are no different. If we are told we are wrong we dig in our heels, don’t we? We are more determined to prove we are right and they are wrong. What you push against grows stronger.

So, I challenge everyone to create a new story.

  • Make one up. Call it fiction. There are always truths in storytelling.
  • Think, talk, write, read, stories with beautiful answers.
  • Envision the world how you know it could be.
  • Be fierce in your determination.
  • Don’t stay silent when others try to drag someone or a group through the mud.

Ask the hard questions when they complain about the ‘other’. Ask why they think the other is that way, challenge them to go deeper.

  • Tell personal stories to exemplify your points.
  • Flood the internet with good stories.
  • You don’t need to defend or explain what your personal politics are, democrat or republican, independent or libertarian. It’s all fine. This isn’t a process for one political persuasion.

In my book, The Light of Grace, two of the characters lived in future time periods: one in mid-21st century, and one in the 26th-century. It was great fun working out how many of today’s problems were solved. So, inadvertently, I’ve already begun this process!

One of the efforts of the spiritual community is to encourage people to go inward more, study scriptures and develop practices that raise one’s consciousness and the desired effect will be the raising of mass consciousness. As the teachings go, when it reaches critical mass, this will change our culture, change society for the better. And we can see the emerging effect. You can find results all around.

But I think we need to do more. I hope you’re with me. Thank you.

Photo by Obie Fernandez on Unsplash

Let’s Do This!

Dear Friends,

This is more and more feeling like hurricane prepping and aftermath for me. Not only are we physically limited as to where we can go and the closures of most businesses, but now my home electricity is out! The Universe, Divine guidance, God, is throwing some big blocks in my normal path!

Fortunately, I have a second place to go, our closed to the public office. Here I am sitting with a/c, internet, and a refrigerator. Therefore, don’t feel sorry for me.

I now have time to sit down and write to all of you. And there is a lot on my mind! I’d like to share all the great information coming in to my inbox, the informative articles I’ve gathered, but frankly, we are all overwhelmed with more to read than we ever could. So, let’s not do that.

What a beautiful time to re-evaluate where we are in our life. We have this time for inner reflection. We can engineer a sort of reset; we have an opportunity to make changes-some of us will have to by necessity-in more than one area of our lives. Career, personal growth, relationships, healthy practices, financial health, and spiritual growth.

I am going to pull out and dust off some tried and true exercises to help me envision where I want to be 6 months from now, or a year from now. What will that look like? How will that feel? What will I be experiencing? More health? More peace? More joy?

When I began a serious meditation practice 18 years ago, I routinely filled out the Goals Worksheet. I had to rewrite them every few months because old goals were attained and I set new ones!! Let’s do this together!

It is best to read your goals daily, especially before meditation, then put them aside and don’t think about them. Your higher-self, inner-being, soul, consciousness, (your term) will take it from there.

Here is the worksheet you can print out. It is on the  Resources page on my website as well. There is also a recommended reading list on this page.

My Goals Worksheet

Let’s all meet in the spiritual realm, where our consciousness merges with mass consciousness, where life energy itself comes from. And we don’t need to set a time when all are meditating, because in the unmanifest, the spiritual realm, there is no time. When we touch upon this dimension, it is always the present. When you make the intention to connect, we’ll be there. See you then!

Oh, and I just found out the electric is back on. Bless the utility people.

Peace, Love and Wellbeing,

Kasey Claytor



Oura Ring Review



I mentioned in the last newsletter that I had purchased an Oura ring. It is an interesting piece of equipment.

My only experience with a tracker before was a Spire that you clipped inside your belt and it quit working after several weeks. I’ve never gotten a tracker since, until now. So, I can’t really compare it to the Fitbit style wrist products. I first read about the Oura ring in an article written by a physician, Dr. Sara Gottfried, in the March-April issue of Spirituality and Health Magazine. She mentioned in an aside piece that she always wears this ring to track her readiness for the day and finds it a good indicator for how hard she can push herself or perhaps she needs to take it easy.

One measurement is the heart rate variability which is now the subject of great study because it seems to be a good gauge of health. It is the measure of variability between your sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous system. The balance between the fight-flight-freeze response and your rest-digest-calm-down-and-heal response as Dr. Gottfried describes it.
It also tracks your resting heart rate during sleep, body temperature, activity, rest periods during the day, steps and what I find most intriguing, sleep stages.

The first hours of your sleep are of the utmost importance because your body/mind usually falls into deep sleep. During deep sleep there are no dreams, and your brain is busily cleaning itself of waste like beta-amyloids and nuerotoxins, flushing them out between the cells. There is growing evidence this is when the brain rids itself of that plague that is blamed for Alzheimer’s and dementia. It handles long-term memory function. It is thought that 1 to 2 hours of deep sleep is ideal. Interestingly, this occurs during Ayurveda’s Pitta cycle, 10:00 PM to 2:00 AM which is thought to be the time of metabolizing, transforming, and cleaning the mind and body.
Then there is the light sleep, which is also integral for health, accounts for half of our sleep time. During light sleep it is easy to wake up. This is the rest and recuperation we so need.

REM sleep or rapid eye movement sleep is when the brain is active but the body is paralyzed. Vivid dreams happen and heart rate and respiration increase. It normally happens toward morning, after your deep sleep period. Learning and problem solving, memory consolidation and good mental health benefits are noted during this stage. According to Ayurveda, this usually occurs during Vata period, 2 to 6 AM. If you awake during this time your mind may be very active and you may have a hard time falling back asleep.

As I wore this during the night, I found it very accurate in noting my readiness for the next day. Especially when I got a 24-hour bug. It noted my raised temperature, interrupted sleep and other signs that I was not in condition to go out and expend myself in any great way.

It notes if your timing is good, bedtime and wake time, and whether you experienced the beneficial stages during the night. When my deep sleep cycle was short, less than an hour or so, I recounted my habits the night before. Did I eat too late? Eat too heavy? Drink alcohol? Have screen time too late? All these things can affect the quality of your sleep. Deepak Chopra has told us that if you do want an alcoholic drink, have it early enough in the day so it’s out of your system by bedtime. So, have it by 4 or 5 PM at the latest.

For me, I learned a heavy meal was my biggest detrimental habit for less than a great night’s sleep. The next biggest issue for me was screen time past 8:30 or 9. That’s TV, iPad, etc. So, I turn them off and read, meditate, etc. It’s a nice, peaceful practice. And the next day my readiness is high! 80s or 90s. (Sometimes, even an exciting part in a book I’m reading gets my respiration and heartrate up and it takes quite a while for it to settle down upon going to bed, cutting my deep sleep shorter than it could have been.)
If you are intrigued by the topic of sleep stages you can follow this link to more detailed info.

The ring works flawlessly. It keeps track of activity during the day, low medium and intense exercise. It only needs to be charged once a week for an hour or so. If you want, you can set it on the charger for 5 minutes a day and that works also.

I have discontinued wearing it during the day though, because I know when I am active and when I need to move. Frankly, it keeps ‘red lining’ on the lack of intensity of my exercise. I follow the recommendations of my mind/body dosha and my age. My dosha is Pitta/Vata, but as we age Vata can rise more easily, and intense exercise can be a problem for me. My best form of exercise is more gentle yoga and walking. Pitta’s may add swimming and biking, and Kaphas can do the intense, endurance and weight lifting type of exercise.

Another minor problem is when I roll out of bed, clean up and sit to meditate, the ring erroneously thinks I’ve gone back to bed, with my yogic breathing skyrocketing my respiration numbers! I contacted them about this and they told me they are working on adding software that will be able to detect pranayama and meditation. Very cool.

The ring is priced fairly high, starts at $299 for the silver version, which is what I bought. I watched a YouTube review by The Body Weight Warrior. And he gives a code that gives you $50.00 off. It worked, and I paid $250.00. So, you can too. The code for the discount is warrior.

In reading the reviews the biggest problem noted was the time it takes for delivery. They manufacture the rings by size, so if you wear a size nine and they just completed making all nines, you have to wait until all the other sizes are manufactured before the nines come around again. I ordered the ring sizer and it came in about 5 days. Then I completed my ring order with size and it took 13 days. From Finland. Pretty timely I thought.