Donna's Spiritual Inspiration
I have learned so much about my spirituality from my family.  Don't we all? Whether we move toward it or away from it as far as we can, our families (birth or chosen) influence us.
Raised as a New Thought Christian, some of my earliest memories are of my grandmother taking me to a movie theater in Los Angeles, California where we attended church services at The Church of Religious Science. We actually heard Ernest Holmes (founder) and Dr. William Hornaday speak there. And I can remember Mickey Rooney being called up from the audience to give testimony to how spirit was working in his life. (I loved Mickey Rooney because I was a big fan of the movie National Velvet!) We also attended the Unity Church together over the years.

My grandmother loved the practical application of Christian principles. It was about action according to Christ-centered teachings. I grew up witnessing her strength and personal power fueled by her belief in partnering with God, co-creating, with love and assuredness.

My mother was raised a Baptist and was a Job's Daughter in her teens (before my grandma found New Thought). She never participated in gossip or negative dialogue. My mother demonstrated love and generosity her entire life. With gentleness and persistence, she believed in the goodness of all people. What an example of unconditional love and compassion!

My dad's spiritual base may have truly originated with Alcoholics Anonymous back in the 1950's. Between the 12-Step Program and the Serenity Prayer as a foundation for living, he has touched the lives of many family and friends in his giving of time and sincere concerned counsel. He has been a living example of love and forgiveness.

My younger sister chose the Salvation Army before she turned 10 years old and surely is a "saint-in-the-making". She is devoted to the gospel of Jesus Christ and the overall mission of SA to minister and serve the material, emotional and spiritual needs of people everywhere. She and her husband have been SA officers, ministers, facility administrators, camp directors, and new project coordinators amongst a million other high-ranking duties and have earned the respect and admiration of this global organization. With their three lovely children, they "live by example" to better the lives of families and, especially, children throughout this country. If you can't tell, I am proud and truly inspired by all that she has done and continues to do.

I am grateful for the blessings in my life...a wonderful family where we have chosen love above all else. I have experienced unconditional love (and, actually, sometimes it was pretty "conditional") along with a respect for hard work and responsibility, commitment to doing what you say you are going to do, tolerance for the differences, and a sense of abundance.

Some of my favorite spiritual teachers in addition to Jesus are: Mohandas Gandhi (peaceful civil disobedience, non-violence, truth); His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, Tenzin Gyatso (compassion); Thich Nhat Hanh (mindfulness); Caroline Myss (power, energy, healing); Sogyal Rinpoche and The Tibetan Book of Living and Dying (sharing Tibetan wisdom and guidance for how we live and how we can better understand death); Deepak Chopra, Joseph Campbell, Mary Mannin Morrissey, Marianne Williamson and many more. Thank you thank you thank you.

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