Happiness and Values

Happiness and Values

monk values buddhism

Monk in the Portola Palace, Tibet

Mastering others is strength. Mastering yourself is true power ~ Lao Tzu

Originally posted in August, 2017

So today my friends I’m on the horns of a dilemma, you see a potential opportunity has come my way and I’m torn.  This is not so unusual, we all go through times where we have to decide whether or not to take the left fork or the right.  The choice is always a bit tough, but once you’ve sat down and weighed both directions the right choice is usually forthcoming.  I’ve always been one who believes in looking forward and once you’ve made a decision you live with it.  This time however I’m having a bit of trouble, you see I’ve been sitting here in the road between the forks contemplating and I can’t seem to come to a decision.  The situation has been weighing on me and has really wrecked my sleep over the last week or so.

It has taken me some time but I have at least identified why this particular decision has caused me so much anguish.  You see once you break down a decision to its principle components it is easier to decide because it is easier to figure out which of the two options most closely allies itself with your core values.  We here about core values a lot, we talk about how much we value things in common conversation, but deep down there are some things that are core to who we are as a human being.  For many of us that is family, (genetic or chosen), friends and hopefully for a lot you the work you do.  The decision I have to make at this point is so difficult because the options both reflect core values that I have.

Living a happier life occurs when we live closer to our core values.  It is important that each of us get to know ourselves so that we understand what truly drives us, and therefore what truly makes us happy.  So today my friends I want you to take a few minutes to think about what is truly important to you.  Keep those things in mind as you continue on your journey and as always, have a happy day my friends. ~ Rev Kane

Other Posts You Might Enjoy!

Happiness and the Benefits of Gratitude

Fear is Killing Your Happiness

Happiness is a Choice


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Miscellaneous Mardi Gras 2016

Miscellaneous Mardi Gras 2016

IMGP0169Another batch of my photos from NOLA – Mardi Gras 2016, enjoy and have a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane


Hippie fishing in the quarter

IMGP0173 IMGP0141 IMGP0159 IMGP0149 IMGP0148 IMGP0145 IMGP0144IMGP0160 IMGP0161 IMGP0162 IMGP0163 IMGP0164 IMGP0176 IMGP9933 IMGP9944 IMGP9945 IMGP9948 IMGP9965 IMGP9967IMGP9971 IMGP9977 IMGP9988 IMGP9997 IMGP9998

Other Posts You Might Enjoy!

Mardi Gras 2016: Street Musicians & Bead Tosses

NOLA: Krewe of the Bossom Buddies

Mardi Gras in Mobile

NOLA is Mardi Gras

Fantasy Fest

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Happiness and Pain

Happiness and Pain

zToday I choose life. Every morning when I wake up I can choose joy, happiness, negativity, pain… To feel the freedom that comes from being able to continue to make mistakes and choices – today I choose to feel life, not to deny my humanity but embrace it.~ Kevyn Aucoin

Today my friends an odd title for a blog on happiness, happiness and pain seem about as far apart as two things can be.  We all have pain, we’ve all lost love and loved ones and for some of us those losses might be quite fresh.  Sometimes we feel as though pain is all that there is in our lives.  Pain is a part of life, we all will experience it at some time in our life and if may feel as though we can’t survive it.  That’s my first point tonight, you have, you will survive the pain in your life.  As the Taoists say, no storm lasts forever, no matter how fierce.  So first, you know this, keep that in your mind.

For me pain has a second edge and that is creativity, I write my best poetry when I’m in pain.  The blacker my mood becomes the more I write, it’s become a psychic survival tool for me.  The writing helps, it burns out the negative energy and brings light into the darkness through art and creation.  My second point, find a way to create when you’re hurting, write, paint, take photographs, build, knit, crochet, hell grab a coloring book and color.  There is something life affirming and positive about the process of creation, even if what you create isn’t all that beautiful.

So tonight my friends, as I write this I’m dealing with some pain of my own, the effects are being exacerbated by a medical issue messing with my brain chemistry.  But I’ve been writing and exercising, eating right and doing the things I know to do to keep my mood up.  This storm, as have all the previous ones, will pass the clouds will part, the sun will come out again and life will be even better than it already is today.  A little of my writing below.  If you’re in pain I’m hoping your storm will pass soon my friend, know that someone cares and look forward to happy days. ~ Rev Kane

Alone in the Depths                                                                                        9/10/16

I miss her
like a drowning man
misses oxygen
at first scrambling for the light
there is pain
finally, utter panic
as I dig for the surface
not enough progress
only to remember
I tied the anchor to my ankles
forced separation from the light
the only hope for my sanity
but I find myself
unable to give myself over
let it come over me
I ache
I sink
I’m alone in the depths


Other Posts You Might Enjoy!

Happiness is Poetry: Ashe Vernon

Happiness is Poetry: Warsan Shire

Happiness is Poetry: Sapphire

Happiness is Poetry: Doug Draime

Happiness is Poetry: Rev Kane


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Happiness Moments: Children Playing

Happiness Moments: Children Playing

joy quote

So a little writing experiment for the blog. I’ve been wanting to find a way to do some free writing as practice. And I’ve been wanting to capture the moments in my life that have brought me true happiness. I need that little pick me up right now with everything going on in the world and no real chance to travel. So, some writing about happy moments in my life, hope they bring you a little happiness too.

The easiest way for me to raise a smile, to feel happy is to watch children play.  Particularly toddlers, the way they interact with the world is intoxicating.  They have some so much curiosity about everything, so many things amuse them and their emotions are pure and exaggerated.  And while that makes an unhappy toddler a potential nightmare to deal with, when they are happy and at play the come to joy so quickly and expressively.  Seeing that, remembering that state brings me incredible joy and the absolute most wonderful thing in the world for me is when babies and toddlers laugh uncontrollably.

One of my favorites is of a baby laughing at ripping paper.

The other day I had a wonderful moment seeing just this sort of thing.  While I was jogging at the park I saw young mom with her two kids.  One was three or four, the other about eighteen months old.  The little guy was sitting on the grass looking up at the sky and it became apparent quickly that he really digs birds.  A bird flew overhead and he was so focused on it that he fell over on his back.  He was so happy to have seen the bird he burst out laughing when he fell over.  He then spotted a couple of ravens about fifty yards away in the park and off he went.   Now, he knew he wasn’t supposed to go that far away from mom, I could tell by the way he was moving.  He would spring toward the birds, stop, look over his shoulder, spring a little further and do it again.  He got about half way to the birds before he got busted and mom came running after him.  Now it may seem that, that would be the end of his bird joy, but it wasn’t.  As mom came running up, he made one last dash for the ravens and they flew up into the air.  Apparently causing them to fly was the point because he burst out laughing again as they did.

It made me so happy to see someone get so much joy from something as simple as a bird flying up into the air.  We can learn so much from munchkins.  Have a happy day my friends. ~ Rev Kane

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Happiness is Keeping to your Values

Happiness is Keeping to your Values

honesty quote

We don’t know where we’ll end up, but making moments matter – taking a step back to see something from a different vantage point and investing in your core values – can lead to a world of surprises. ~ Nina Tassler

An important part of being happy is knowing yourself.  You have to know what’s important to you, what types of things make your happier, what types of things sabotage your happiness.  Very often, as we examine these things, we start to get a good sense of our core values.  By core values what I mean are those things that are most important to you.  For many people a core value is connection to family.  For many people, loyalty to their friends, being someone who gives back, being kind or religious are things that may be core values to them.

For me, one of my deepest core values is honesty.   This means that I make a significant effort to be honest with people.  Sure, we all tell the occasional white lie to spare someone’s feelings, or stay quiet rather than say something hurtful.  However, I really try to do as little of that as possible.  This makes me a bit too  direct, a bit too honest for some people and it definitely means that people who know me, well, they don’t ask questions they really don’t want an honest answer to.  Of course that has it’s upside as well, I am someone that people depend upon when they want truly honest feedback.

The thing about this value for me is that it’s something that’s very much a two-way street.  I have an expectation that the people close to me will also be honest with me.  When this doesn’t happen, when there are conflicting core values at work, it creates for disappointment, bad feelings and a loss of happiness.

So what’s the lesson in this brief discussion tonight?  Well simply, it is that if you want to maximize your happiness, it helps to align yourself in life, to spend time with people who share your core values.  While diversity in many things is a positive, in this particular instance, aligning with similar minded people can be a positive impact on your happiness and lead to happy days my friends. ~ Rev Kane

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Happiness & Standing Up for Yourself

Happiness & Standing Up for Yourself







We all know the concept, the old biblical saying, Whoever hits you on the cheek, offer him the other also; and whoever takes away your coat, do not withhold your shirt from him either. I’ve always really struggled with this concept. On one hand I would like to be the type of person who could instantly forgive people who have done me harm or even something Drew Carey has talked about, forgiving people in advance. However as someone who’s a teacher by training I wonder how people learn if there are no consequences to their actions?  A lot of times I feel more like this quote from Margret Cho.

happiness quote





People are naturally afraid of conflict and have been taught to turn the other cheek. Unfortunately far too many people take advantage of this and push the rest of us around. They drive like jerks, cut into lines and generally treat the world like they are the only ones in it. So should we turn the other cheek, or should we stand up for ourselves?

As I said above, I really struggle with this; there are times when I am able to let things go, in the end does it really matter that someone cut you off in traffic? Really, in the scheme of things it’s a moment, a truly irrelevant moment in your life. But if you react and get angry then it stays with you, bounces around in your mind. However, if someone is driving like an idiot and there is no price to pay, then what have they learned? And if they haven’t learned that it’s a problem, what incentive do they have to stop what they are doing?  Doesn’t this just lead to this?

happiness quote orwell





Where I’ve come down on this issue is as follows; where there is truly no opportunity for anyone to learn anything, let it go. If the person you’re dealing with truly looks like they might be violent, let it go, very little is worth actual violence. However when it comes down to it you don’t want to become a doormat and destroy your own happiness. So when there is an opportunity for someone to learn or when your own person or self-worth is at stake, stand up for yourself. In the end I think you’ll feel better about yourself and be a happier person. Just my two cents tonight, have a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane

happiness quote ghandi


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Random Happiness: Happy Facts

Random Happiness: Happy Facts

happiness animals

Sea Otters hold hands when they sleep so that they don’t drift apart!

I prefer to be a dreamer among the humblest, with visions to be realized, than lord among those without dreams and desires.  ~ Kahlil Gibran

Tonight a collection of links to random happy facts, things like every year hundreds of new trees are grown because squirrels forget where they hid their nuts!  Check them out and have a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane

Sixty-four Mind Blowing Facts to Make You Feel Incredibly Happy

Sixty of the World’s Happiest Facts

Thirty of the Happiest Facts Ever, with pictures for each.

Fifteen Fact to Make you Smile, number one is the greatest one ever!

Twenty Surprising Facts about Happiness

Thirty-two Cool & Happy Facts



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Helen Keller, Happiness & Optimism

Helen Keller, Happiness  & Optimism

You learn about Helen Keller in elementary school, you see the Miracle Worker at some point and you’re impressed.   However, I never knew or retained much about what this amazing woman accomplished as an author and even as a political activist.  So take a look and have a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane

helen keller, happiness, quote

Helen Keller should be your hero.

Here’s a piece from Hub pages discussing her unshakable optimism:

As a deaf-blind individual who prospered in a world that very much relies on sight and hearing, Helen  retained her happiness by always placing stock in remaining an optimst. For many, optimism is simply remaining positive during a bad day, but for Helen, optimism was a way of life – a necessity. More importantly, Helen believed pessimism to be dangerous, never allowing herself to lose hope. “If it be true that optimism compels the world forward, and pessimism retards it,” Helen once wrote, “then it is dangerous to propagate a pessimistic philosophy.

Just after graduating from college at twenty-three, Helen wrote her second book, My Key of Life: Optimism. Released to widespread critical acclaim, the book was simply a guide to obtaining and retaining optimism and hope. Nearly overnight, Helen became a beacon for hope and overcoming indescribable odds.

Using this recognition, Helen began to travel the world, sharing her story and optimism with others. And for Helen, this was no small feat. Imagine a time speaking in front a large audience, now imagine you cannot hear yourself, or see your audience. This was just one small challenge in Helen’s life.

helen keller, optimism, happiness, quote

Helen Keller a true believer in happiness and optimism

After years of voice coaching, and tremendous concentration, Helen was able to speak. During one early lecture, however, Helen began to lose her composure and lost control over the tone of her voice. Realizing this, Helen ran crying off stage. Yet, Helen did not let this event, unthinkable to many, stop her. Just moments later, she walked back on stage and continued her lecture. For the rest of her life, Helen gave thousands of lectures all over the world.

Throughout her life, Helen believed it was her lot in life – her “sacred duty” – to share her optimism with others. In her book on optimism, Helen wrote, “If I am happy in spite of my deprivations, if my happiness is so deep that it is a faith, so thoughtful that it becomes a philosophy of life, – if, in short, I am an optimist, my testimony to the creed of optimism is worth hearing.”

Helen Keller truly lived a life of happiness and optimism.  Here’s hoping her story has helped you have a happier day my friends ~ Rev Kane

Other Happiness Posts You Might Enjoy!

Happiness and Becoming Who You Are

Fear is Killing Your Happiness

Our Best Happiness Posts for 2015

Revisiting Some of Our Best Posts & Pictures

There are Angels Among Us: A True Story of Giving & Kindness

Remember the Sweet Things

Happiness is Not Safety

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Happiness and Dancing

Happiness and Dancing

bliss, dancing, happiness, burning man

Bliss Dancing

And those who were seen dancing were thought to be insane by those who could not hear the music  ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Today let’s not talk about deep things, lets talk about happiness while dancing through simplicity, life can be all too complicated.  Even our search for happiness can be complicated, we can over think things, read too many books, listen to too many people in blogs spouting off about happiness.

So today do something simple and easy to make you happy.  Steal a few minutes and eat a cupcake or take a quiet moment and drink in the sunset.  Turn up the music in the car and sing like crazy, or play air guitar at traffic lights or dance.  If you can truly dance unbridled you can’t be sad, lost in the movement and the moment and the music nothing else can matter, a few minutes of unrestricted happiness can be yours.  We all know this quote and we all know it because it states the simple truth we’re talking about today.

You’ve gotta dance like there’s nobody watching,
Love like you’ll never be hurt,
Sing like there’s nobody listening,
And live like it’s heaven on earth

~ William W. Purkey

And as always, have a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane

happiness dog wisdom

Happiness is the wisdom of dogs

We should consider every day lost on which we have not danced at least once  ~ Friedrich Nietzsche

Other Fun Posts!

Happiness and Dancing with Matt –  a man dances his way around the world

Kids explain Christmas and Santa – really adorably funny kids

Funny Signs – images of funny signs, the first one will crack you up!

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Happiness is Poetry: Sapphire

Happiness is Poetry: Sapphire

happiness poetry sapphire





Tonight we return to the land of outlaw poetry and a really brilliant poet named Sapphire.  Her stuff is raw and intense and amazing, but be warned her language and visuals are shocking and of an adult nature, so have a read and a happy day my friends ~ Rev Kane

Originally posted March, 2019

Humpty Dumpty Heart

my heart leaks knowing
since you shot my sheets
with light,
lifting me out my skin
past sky.

i look for your tongue in light
& listen to tales of a new daughter
apartments, mortgages, wife;
knowing i was just a blurred night–
black, whited-out & lost.

Out the blue you call back the years
like a movie reel rewinding,
after six deaf years i hear
you want to come over.

the silence of blind rooms
goads me to balance
humpty dumpty like
one more time the weight of light.

& i would,
but for the bleeding yolk
that lies in cracked knowing–
once it’s eaten
it’s over.


Wild Thing

And I´m running,
running wild,
running free,
like soldiers down
the beach,
like someone
just threw me
the ball.
My thighs pump
thru the air
like tires
rolling down
the highway
big & round
eating up the ground
of America
but I never been any
further than 42nd Street.
Below that is as
unfamiliar as my
father´s face,
foreign as the smell of
white girls´pussy,
white girls on the bus,
white girls on TV
My whole world is
black & brown & closed,
till I open it
with a rock,
christen it with
the music
pops thru me
like electric shocks,
my sweat is a
river running
thru my liver
green with hate,
my veins bulge out
like tomorrow,
my dick is
the Empire State Building,
I eat your fear
like a chimpanzee
ow ow
ow whee
My sneakers glide off
the cement like
white dreams
looking out at the world
thru a cage of cabbage
& my mother´s fat,
hollering don´t do this
& don´t do that.
I scream against the restraint
of her big ass sitting on my face
drowning my dreams in sameness.
I´m scared to go
it hurts me to stay.
She sits cross-legged
in front the TV
telling me no
feeding me
clothing me
bathing me in her ugliness
high high in the sky
18th floor of the projects.
Her welfare check buys me $85 sneakers
but can´t buy me a father.
She makes cornbread from Jiffy box mix
buys me a coat
$400, leather like everybody else´s.
I wear the best, man!
14 karat gold chain
I take off before I go wildin´.
Fuck you nigger!
Nobody touches my gold!
My name is Leroy
bold gold
I got the goods
that make the ladies
young & old
sign your name across my heart
I want you to be my baby

Rapper D
Rapper G
Rapper I
my name is lightning
across the sky
So what I can´t read
you spozed to teach me
you the teacher
I´m the ape
black ape
in white sneakers
hah hah
I rape
I do the wild thing
I do the wild thing
My teacher asks me
what would I do
if I had 6 month
to live.
I tell her I´d fuck her,
sell dope & do the wild thing.
My thighs are locomotives
hurling me thru the
underbrush of Central Park,
the jungle.
I either wanna be a cop
or the biggest dope dealer in Harlem
when I grow up.
I feel good!
It´s a man´s world,
my sound is king
I am the black man´s sound.
Get off my face whining bitch!
No, I didn´t go to school today
& I ain´t going tomorrow!
I like how the sky looks
when I´m running,
my clothes are new & shiny,
my tooth gleams gold.
I´m fast as a wolf
I need a rabbit,
the sky is falling
calling my name
Leroy Leroy.
I look up
blood bust
in my throat
it´s my homeboys
L.D., C.K. & Beanbutt!
Hey man what´s up!
I got the moon
in my throat,
I remember when
Christ sucked my dick
behind the pulpit,
I was 6 years old
he made me promise
not to tell no one.
I eat cornbread &
collard greens.
I only wear Adidas
I´m my own man,
they can wear New Balance or Nike
if they want,
I wear Adidas.
I´m L.D.
man with the money
all the girls know me.
I´m classified as mildly retarded
but I´m not
least I don´t think
I am.
Special Education classes
eat up my brain
like last week´s greens
rotting in plastic containers.
My mother never
throws away anything.
I could kill her
I could kill her
all those years
all those years
I sat
I sat in classes
for the mentally retarded
so she could get
the extra money welfare gives
for retarded kids.
So she could get
some money,
some motherfuckin´ money.
That bitch
that bitch
I could kill her
all the years
I sat next to kids
who shitted on themselves,
dreaming amid
rooms of dull eyes
that one day
my rhymes
would break open
the sky
& my name would
be written
across the marquee
at the Apollo
in bold gold
me bigger
than Run DMC
Rapper G
Rapper O
Rapper Me
„Let´s go!“ I scream.
My dick is a locomotive
my sister eats like a 50 ¢ hot dog.
I scream, „I said let´s go!“
„It´s 40 of us
a black wall of sin.
The god of our fathers
descends down & blesses us,
I say thank you Jesus.
Now let´s do the
wild thing.
I pop off the cement
like toast outta toaster
hot hard crumbling
the park is green
combat operation
lost soul
looking for Lt. Calley
Jim Jones
anybody who could direct
this spurt of semen
rising to the sky.
flying thru
the rhythm
„Aw man!
nigger please
I know
who I am.“
My soul sinks
to its knees &
howls under the
moon rising full,
„Let´s get a female jogger!“
I shout into the twilight
looking at the
middle-class thighs
pumping past me,
cadres of bitches
who deserve to die
for thinking they´re better
than me
You ain´t better than
nobody bitch.
The rock begs my hand
to hold it.
It says, „Come on man.“
T.W., Pit Bull, J.D. & me
grab the bitch
ugly big nose white bitch
but she´s beautiful cause she´s white
she´s beautiful cause she´s skinny
she´s beautiful couse she´s gonna die
cause her daddy´s gonna cry
I bring the rock down
on her head
sounds dull & flat
like the time I busted
the kitten´s head.
The blood is real & red
my dick rises.
I tear off her bra
feel her perfect pink breasts
like Brooke Shields
like bitches in Playboy
Shit! I come all over myself!
I bring the rock down
the sound has rhythm
hip hop ain´t gonna stop
till your face sees
what I see every day
walls of blood
walls of blood
she´s wriggeling like
a pig in the mud.
I never seen a pig
or a cow
´cept on TV.
Her nipples are like
hard strawberries
my mouth tastes
like pesticide.
I fart.
Yosef slams her
across the face with a pipe.
My dick won´t get
hard no more.
I bring the rock down
removing what she
looks like forever
ugly bitch
ugly bitch
I get up
blood on my hands
semen in my jeans
the sky is black
the trees are green
I feel good baby
I just did
the wild thing!

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