Friday, April 13, 2007
Carnival of Hope: Volume 1, Number 8
Welcome to the April 13 Carnival of Hope! I hope your Friday the 13th is very lucky indeed.
The next edition will be posted on Friday, May 11; the submission deadline is 5:00 PM PDT on Thursday, May 10. I don't yet have a theme for this issue, so send me your best posts and let's see what develops! You can either use the BlogCarnival submission form or write directly to SusanPal(at)aol(dot)com. Please include the permalink for your post and a two or three line description of what it's about.
This month, I asked bloggers to send me stories of how seemingly bad luck turned out to be good luck. Okay, so it's a pretty obscure theme. I did get some submissions that fit it, though!
Elliot shares some painful losses of faith in his post The Little Boy and the Egg. It's hard to keep having our systems of belief smashed apart, but, as Elliot reminds us, "I remember, though the memory doesn't necessarily bring hope, that a Faberge egg is an egg, and that sometimes, sometimes, when an egg gets smashed open... a little baby bird comes out."
Poet Tiel Ansari continues the theme of breakage in her haiku Misfortune, which succinctly explores the loss of narcissism made possible by splintered mirrors.
And Craig Harper learns the same lesson, in less metaphorical terms, when a shattering tragedy gives him a new perspective on What Really Matters.....
Perspective is also the point of Conan Stevens' Massive Size As An Actor -- Good Or Bad?. "Often bad luck or good luck is all a matter of perception. This is a personal story of how one person saw my height as a disadvantage but I had only ever seen it as an advantage." Good luck with your career, Conan!
Most of us would consider becoming homeless the worst luck we could endure. But as blogger J Bradley shows us in his podcast interview Rob 4/4/2007, living on the streets can be better than being in prison. This blog has some links to thought-provoking sites about homelessness, and I encourage you to visit them.
In her post Praise Be To God, Sundance argues furiously with the notion of giving thanks to God when other people's bad luck becomes our good luck. "We should not praise Him for the misfortunes of others, we should ask, 'What more can I do to ease their suffering?' We must change our perspective from one that is egocentric to one that is sympathetic."
To be able to do that, though, we need to heal ourselves first, as Walks The Edge illustrates in her own post about prayer, Prayer can be healing (whether or not you believe in “God”). She moved from being egocentric to being sympathetic, but first she had to understand -- and let go of -- the knots into which her ego was tied.
On a more everyday level, Riversider uses an ad campaign urging workers to Take A Preston Minibreak to remind us that "Green spaces are a great place to find hope, even on your lunch hour."
Rajesh.P.I tells us about another easily accessible form of healing in her post about the Hugging Saint. I've heard that six hugs a day can boost emotional and physical health. If that's true, imagine how much health this woman is spreading!
Another way to make people feel better is to tell them what you love about them, what they've done well. Families staging interventions for addicts are usually advised to use the opposite technique, to tell their loved ones everything they've done wrong. But Praveen advocates the first method in her post The Anti-Intervention, and I think I agree with her.
The Internet is a powerful tool for communication, and also for helping others. Kate shares her post Read this Blog for Charity: Week One, telling us, "Babylune is hosting a charity campaign to benefit mothers. For every 1000 page views served up at the blog between March 18 and May 13th (Mothering Sunday to Mothers Day), $1 goes to one of three charities of hope that benefit mothers as chosen by people who vote in the poll." That gives us exactly a month to put our browsers into overdrive!
And Zechary tells us about another cyber-humanitarian scheme in his post Chat to help people.
That's it for the April edition. Enjoy your spring, and please come back in May!