Over the last few weeks, I have been pondering over the issue of diet and health and honouring my mind, body and spirit. As we progress into the 21st century, eyes are turned towards how food is affecting our health. Top of the list is Obesity and Cancer, followed closely by Diabetes and many autoimmune diseases such as Fibromyalgia.
But above all the rules about what to eat and what not, is knowing the truth for our own bodies that count.
I have studied the subject of food and diet for over forty years, not least because I have a weight and food issue myself. I have been very overweight, and very slim, now at the age of seventy-five I am somewhere in between. Funnily enough, I am the weight that I was when I went on my first slimming diet at the age of nineteen. So, on the one hand, I have wasted my time and effort, but more importantly, I have learnt a lot about my body that I would not have known without having to watch my weight
And I have written books and blogs and done a few radio interviews. And my life has been enriched because of what some may see as a problem. When I see people who are suffering because of misinformation over the years about what works and what does not, my heart goes out to them, because I can see that I too could have suffered because of the lack of knowledge about what suits my body.
I am not talking about any particular way of healthy eating, but experimenting and finding what suits our individual needs. Some may eat meat, others not. Some may eat raw food and others not. A low carbohydrate diet is for many people, and one reason for that is that most carbohydrate food these days is high in sugar and refined.
What is almost certain is that eating the processed junk that saves time and money, whether they are proclaimed healthy or not, is damaging our health.
We simply need to be more aware, conscious and experiment on what suits our bodies, way of life and beliefs and honouring them.
We have been misled for many years now about what we should and should not eat.
Take fat, for instance. In the 1970s we were led to believe that we should not eat fat. There was even a slimming empire based on that and based their diet on no fat at all, and we are still trying to break the habit of eating low-fat products.
But eventually, scientists have realised that low fat is unhealthy and that the body needs a certain amount of healthy fat.
What about those who eat a lot and get away with it?
That is a myth. There are people who seem to get away with it, but eventually, find that they have not. My husband was skinny all his life, but after years of a bad diet, he had Type 2 Diabetes.
However, I have observed that people with no food issues are aware of when to stop eating, what to eat, have consistency around food and probably eat very little. Even those who we may think to eat a lot, and remain slim and fit have a point where they stop eating for a while. Most people with weight issues, most likely have a history of dieting one minute and binge eating the next.
But I believe that finding the truth about your own needs is paramount for healthy eating. I wonder how many people who live on the processed junk sold to us, give a thought to the damage that they may be doing to their health?
So, in general, I am convinced that if we eat a healthy diet, we are already somewhat conscious.
Now I have realised that at least for me, I want to take this a step further, and turn my consciousness into honouring my body, mind and spirit.
I do this by asking myself before I eat three questions.
Am I honouring my body mind and spirit by eating this particular food?
If my creator was standing in front of me, would I offer this food to them?
Am I eating this for comfort or nurture?
Let’s take them one at a time.
Am I honouring my body mind and spirit by eating this particular food?
In other words, I have studied and experienced the results of eating wheat. I know that I can eat a little, especially products made with Spelt flour. But because I had an eating disorder, namely Bulimia, in the past, I know that it can lead to a binge, and secondly, it bloats my body and leaves me very uncomfortable and lethargic. So; would I be honouring my body? No because of the damage it can do to me. My mind? Yes, because it leaves me in a foggy state. My Spirit? Yes, because I feel that I will have dishonoured my body.
If my creator was standing in front of me?
Is this food pure enough and as clean as I can make it? Or is it Frankenstein food that can damage this wonderful creation that is taking me through my time on earth?
Am I eating this for comfort or nurture?
Well in a way they are both the same up to a point. But if I am not really hungry, and eating for comfort, is that viable at this moment? Will I be able to stop at just one or two, or go on to a binge? However, if I am really hungry or my body clock is telling me something, then eat.
I may add here that there will be times when our body craves something. Usually, that is a sign that we need something in that particular food. Also, four o’clock in the afternoon is a very popular time for sugar cravings. I usually have a cup of tea with some stevia in it. (However, there are some people who would not be able to do that because it would set off a craving for sugar.)
So there are no rules with healthy eating. We need to learn about what is suitable for our body. There will be times when we get it wrong, but that is the part of the learning process.
And to do this, we can learn to trust that process.
I am still learning, but can suddenly see where I have been going wrong.
At the end of my book, The Truth Has Set Me Free; I talk about how I finally overcame my problem of depression. And it was to stop beating myself up over being depressed in the first place. And it is just the same with what I eat.
What I have been doing all my life is trying to live by a set of rules, and in some regimes, you could call it dogma. When I have gone wrong in the past, I have beat myself up because I haven’t stuck to my diet, I have gone onto binge eating and not caring. I am writing this to myself as well as anyone else.
So now I am finding that those three questions have become a daily habit that has made me more aware, and perhaps it may work for many others too.
An example of Ageing With Vitality Monty Shulberg.
The Years pass by
How quickly we dare not say
They come and go
A journey that seems so long
But stay strong
‘Cos the moon not visible in the day
Spreading its beauty just at night
Charming and bright
Painting and poem by Monty Shulberg.
In the last three months, I have met a remarkable man; Monty Shulberg.
He is an artist, and wonderful conversationalist, and also a poet it seems. And he is ageing with vitality. He is 91 years of age.
He is frail in body and also is in the early stages of dementia. But he is out and about, and is a remarkable man, and not ruled by disabilities. He uses a frame to walk and seems to know a lot of people.
I feel so privileged to have met Monty, and we meet regularly, sometimes with Tom, my husband, either in Tavistock where he lives or in Plymouth, to chat about the meaning of life. We have so much in common on that ground,
His history is of teaching deaf children to listen with vibration. He was trained as an audiologist and travelled all over the world, helping parents and children when it seemed that others had given up on them.
Hence the painting at the bottom which he titled “The Sorcerers Apprentice” Which spoke to me from a shelf in a coffee shop in Tavistock. I like to think that it was Monty speaking to me because I contacted him for details of the price and we met up and bonded straight away.
For more on Monty, and to see more of his paintings, here is his twitter account.
I am so excited that my book has been published at last. All the reasons are on my previous blog.
I am writing now to let you know what is happening with the book.
It was launched successfully today, and it is with grateful thanks to Vanessa, my editor and publisher, for working into the night last night and pressing the “publish” key on Amazon at three minutes to midnight!
So, it is now on Kindle. And here is the link.
The Kindle version is on offer for the first week at £1.99. The full price will be £5.99.
Please bear in mind that this is the initial launch version.
In later versions and in the Printed book, which will be ready in a couple of weeks, there will be pictures, and I will also be sending out signed copies for those who have already paid me, and for anyone else who would like to order one from me.
The Printed book will be £9.99 plus P & P if required if you order through me.
Pay in advance, for the printed copy, please.
While I am here, would you please write a review for me? It will help to get the book up the charts, and Amazon will start to promote it too. If you buy the book this week while it is on offer, then you can go to the section “Before You Go” and an opportunity will come up.
I am still evolving into finding The Truth works for me.
It has set me free, but still continues to evolve. The book has evolved even more in the two and half years, that it took to write it, along with me. But now we have a publishing date at last. The description on the back of the book reads;
Finding the Truth over a lifetime freed Patricia Cherry from the narcissistic teachings of the Christian fundamentalist churches she belonged to as a child and young woman. This is the moving story of love, compassion and forgiveness on her part for everyone concerned. Painting a vivid picture of life as a child in the 1940’s and 1950’s and as a mother in the 1960’s and 1970’s, Patricia candidly shares her journey to freedom from indoctrinated beliefs.
I began to write this book two and a half years ago. I thought that it was done and dusted. But then life happened.
In July 2017 I was privileged to meet Vanessa Squire Kaliski, at a local meet-up of The Silver Tent, which is a worldwide group of women, over Fifty and it was still in its infancy at that time. As soon as I told Vanessa about my book, she became interested, and I sent her the first draft. She immediately sensed it’s power and how it would support other people in finding their way out of the trap of living with dogma. She was very excited about it. And so she offered to edit it, and go on to support me in the publishing.
Then at the end of August, my beloved Mum became very ill which led to her death in October 2017. At that time my brother and I became devoted to making sure that we made her end of life as comfortable as possible, which proved to be more difficult than it can seem. But this event changed how I felt about my purpose and Mum.
How was I going to do that?
I had begun that year with a Kundalini Yoga Retreat run by Jane Oppegard and Su Bear, in Glastonbury. (Shining Lights) and I felt drawn to this retreat because its purpose was to start the new year with Intention. And to bring that intention to the retreat. Mine was to be able to deal with Mum with love and compassion and not resentment and duty. It worked, and straight away on returning home that very afternoon, it was to find that Roger had already begun to look at the changes that were necessary to Mums welfare.
It proved to be a challenging year, and somehow the timing for publishing The Truth was not right.
So having given myself three months or so, to digest the events of losing Mum and evolving even more into the Wise Elder-woman that I am, I added an epilogue at the end of the original book.
The Universe has my Back.
At the beginning of 2018, my husband became ill, and for the rest of 2018, we were focusing on his health, and for me to adjust to being a caregiver. And so once again the book was shelved.
However, through life’s events, I have learnt that The Universe has my back. When I can surrender, (not always easy) things will fall into place. I had believed that the book would be published in November 2018, but there was yet another lesson for me to learn before I could take the step of showing the world that it is possible to free.
I began to realise that it’s normal to have down days as well as up. I learnt an alternative way of seeing depression. I now call it deep rest, for except for people who are medically and chronically depressed, it’s normal to need to rest and recuperate at times. Our bodies will dictate to us when we need to rest,, and if we ignore those signals and carry on, we can become ill. Most importantly, I realised that I was making it worse by beating myself up for being depressed when I was supposed to be free! Which was a leftover feeling from the days when the churches that I belonged to, taught us that it was a sin to be depressed, irritable or angry! I had internalised that and lived under that spell for most of my life. In the jargon of the upbringing I had, I was not a good witness for the Lord.
I learn about the need for forgivenss and love.
I realised that the book was not so much about my life, the hurts, the fear or the resentment, but more about how I learnt the need for love, forgiveness and recognising that deep down I had always known the truth. I am the Universe. I am free, and I am good enough. I am a spiritual being spending time on earth to experience being human. Most of all I don’t need fixing! Which is the message of the Christian churches that I belonged to as a child and young adult.
Somewhere along the line, I took out a sacred contract with the people who have been so much an influence in my life, for every experience. Some of those experiences were painful; some were joyful. But they were all part of my learning.
How did I see the truth at last?
Most of all I’ve realised that we all need to know from the heart what our truth is. And not from what we are taught.
Yes, books and teachers will come along to help us in our seeking. But it’s the “Yes” moments that show us the truth.
When you are reading or listening, and you suddenly feel your heart leaping within you, that is your truth. Hence the title of my book was born.
Once we know that, then it frees us from the chains of having to obey rules, particularly human-made rules, to be good enough.
No matter what your religion, culture or background, if you feel trapped I hope that this book will show you that there is a better way.
Details for the book as follows.
Publishing day is May 14th 2019. On that day, you can come to my Website to find out the link for Amazon kindle. It will be FREE for the first three days. If you feel so inclined, I would be very grateful if you could write a review, the more reviews I get, the more Amazon will promote the book.
After a while, (hopefully not too many days) it will be available on a print to order basis, and you can also buy a signed copy from me for £10. + £2.50 for Postage and packing. Keep an eye on my Website for the latest developments. To order a printed signed copy please contact me on my email address, to be found on my website.
One morning last week I woke up feeling incredibly liberated and the title of my new book came immediately to mind.
The Truth Has Set Me Free is about how I found freedom from the shadow of Christian Fundamentalist teachings.
Don’t get me wrong. This article is not an attack on any particular religion, or even on the variety of churches and denominations within the Christian Religion. It is more about the psychological effects that the dogma of some of these denominations can have on people, and my story in this book is about how it affected me and two previous generations.
In my book I have written about how I broke the chains of those beliefs and freed myself up so that my children would not, in turn, inherit the anxiety and depression that comes from believing that you can never be good enough. And that God is a God of love and not fear.
I found a book which described what I was taught.
I have been reading a very interesting and eye-opening book called The Darkening Age. By Catherine Nixey. It is about the destruction of Greek and other classical arts and philosophy in the first five centuries.
In it, I pondered over whether, it is more important for all of us to realise that “I am who God created me to be, and GOOD ENOUGH.”
But it took me the whole of the first forty years of my life before I began to realise that. I had been indoctrinated with being unworthy, and a sinner who would go to hell unless I was “Saved” and lived as a Christian.
I was led to believe that all other religions and beliefs were false, and I must not even read about them, because that would damage my faith.
I spent the last week, reading and listening to The Darkening Age with mixed emotions. Crying, laughing and angry at times.
Angry, because the book describes in detail the damage, slaughter and persecution that Christians imposed onto those who would not become Christians and be baptised. We hear a lot about how the Roman Empire was persecuting the Christians, but very little is said about the far greater slaughter on the Christians part.
I cried because I felt it was so sad that people were taught that way and did not have a choice, such as we do these days.
I laughed at times at what they used to say and believe and found it incredulous that some fundamentalist churches still teach that.
Quote “As preachers in the fourth century started to warn congregations, Gods all-seeing gaze followed you everywhere. He didn’t only see you in the church; you were also watched by Him as you went out through the church doors; as you went out into the streets and walked around the marketplace or sat in the Hippodrome or the theatre. His gaze followed you into your home and even into your bedroom – and you should be in no doubt that He watched what you did there too.” End of quote.
That quote brought back some pretty painful memories for me when growing up. It was exactly like that. I was not allowed to move without being reminded that God was watching me. Or warned that if I was going anywhere, that I was to consider whether I could take Jesus with me. Imagine how it felt, having this hanging over my every move.
In the preface of my book, I tell how it is similar to the Christmas song, about Santa.
“You better watch out, you better not cry, you better be good I’m telling you why. Santa Claus is coming to town.” Except that for me it was a case of “God will judge you and if you’re not “Saved” you will go to Hell.
Another quote from The Darkening Age; “To allow another person to remain outside the Christian Faith was not to show praiseworthy tolerance. It was to damn them.”End of quote.
That quote reminds me of the time when as a teenager, I found myself having to stand outside the NAAFI building in Plymouth telling them how wonderful it was that I was a Christian — and do this humiliating task in the belief that I needed to share the good news. I must add that being a Christian did not mean culture for us Pentecostals, but a born again Christian, living every moment of our lives, being a witness to bring others to the Lord as well as having to be aware that this angry God was watching our every move.
I felt angry that so many people still have those beliefs and try to impose them onto others.
Have things changed I wonder?
The only difference (and it is a vast difference) is that these days we would not be killed for refusing to become a Christian, but we would be living under the threat of a judgment day when we would be judged and sent to Hell and damnation if we don’t “Get Saved.” Either when we died, or when Jesus comes back again.
I want to believe that things have changed since I was part of this setup sixty years and forty years ago.
I would like it if I discovered that God’s love is more in the light these days, and not an angry God who is out to destroy the people He created, no matter what they believe.
So much of The Darkening Age reminds me of the attitude from born again Christians. And I can see that these teachings have come down through the ages, even to today’s Fundamentalist groups.
I think that the Jesus we read about in the Bible, would be shocked at how humans have taken His teachings far from what He Said. They certainly lost the most important one, which is love, accompanied by forgiveness.
There is so much more I could tell you about this book, and the writer Catherine certainly seemed to have done her homework!
A group on Facebook for discussion.
I am looking forward to a group of us on Facebook which I intend to start, discussing this without fear of anyone preaching at us. Therefore it will be an application-only group. For anyone who would like to ask questions, or has been involved, or affected by what I am saying here. Also, I would like therapists and healers to belong too with their contribution.
See you again soon. And please comment if you would be interested in joining “The Truth Has Set Me Free” group.
The book is getting nearer to being published, hopefully in May. There is no link yet, but there soon will be. Watch this space.
The Gospel Of Inclusion. by Bishop Carlton Pearson.
Just to make it clear, for many years I considered myself a Carbohydrate and sugar addict.
But just recently I have become aware that sometimes I enjoy certain foods. And perhaps I need to be kinder to myself. However, there is more behind the addiction than meets the immediate attention. So for example, an addict to alcohol may never be able to have just that one drink. Or the drug addict can never have just the one fix.
The word addict is used commonly in the 21st Century, and I am beginning to think that it just may be too common.
Let’s start with the Wikipedia description of addiction.
Addiction is a brain disorder characterised by compulsive engagement in rewarding stimuli despite adverse consequences.
The most frequent addictions and those who do the most harm, because they affect people around them too, leading to crime for the individual who needs their fix; are alcohol, drugs and gambling.
But we now use the word addiction to many other things. Such as sugar, food, internet games and so on.
But do you think that there are certain words that have become distorted from their true meaning? Are we giving the name to certain behaviours that are really quite harmless, and is only a desire for something nice, particularly for certain foods or our favourite computer game. Is the word addiction becoming overused?
I know that addiction can begin with not just liking something, but finding that it gives us a high, and we are more aware now of making sure that we don’t become addicted to certain activities. Even reading books has become something to be wary of. How often do you hear people say that they are addicted to reading, running, walking, exercise, and many healthy and useful activities?
Words can mean different things to different people.
Take the word “Diet”. It simply means eating regime. So we are all on a diet! But this word has now taken on negative connotations. Because we now know that slimming diets are futile, and we need to simply change our eating habits.
Now don’t get me wrong. I have written a lot about “not dieting”. I have three books on the subject on Amazon Kindle. And there are many blogs about it on my website. http://www.patriciacherrylifecoach.com.
I am the first to say that dieting is futile and that healthy eating for a lifetime is the best way to go. But the point I am making here is that we have made “diet” almost a dirty word.
So I wonder whether we are doing the same with the word addiction?
Are we too worried that behaviour, or liking something means that we are becoming an addict?
Let me give you an example.
Recently a friend said to me that she has started to have a scone in the afternoon for her tea. And followed this with the words “I’m becoming addicted to them.”
Then a few days later the same friend said to me that I (meaning me) am becoming addicted to oatcakes. That was because she had heard me say often lately that I love humous and oatcakes and often have that for my lunch. But it was my reaction that startled me. I immediately went on the defensive and said that actually I had made the packet last a month!
Why did I do that?
Because I have been struggling with addictive behaviour around food all of my life, and now that I consider that I am mostly in control (another word that has negative connotations for addicts and dieter alike) I felt that she was being unfair and insinuating that I was an addict. But her remark was not meant to be derisory.
I see a society that is making us into victims, using the word addict to control our behaviour. We stop kids from enjoying games on the computer because we fear addiction. (I do believe that needs to be limited of course, but we need to think more about why.)
We are beginning to feel guilty if we eat cake in public. And many find themselves using words such as good, bad or too much cholesterol, or worry that they are becoming addicted.
We are still in the grip of not eating saturated fat, and the biggest sellers in supermarkets are still low-fat products. Even though it was proved two years ago that it is not harmful unless processed. Natural yoghurt, butter, olive oil, and other saturated fats are good for us. But in my generation, there are many sick people who lived on low-fat products for a very long time in the belief that they were doing the right things. Better to eat the grey, dull, so-called healthy margarine than butter which tastes good and does you good.
But I digress. I wonder how many of us deprive ourselves of the occasional treat of cake or a scone because we fear addiction.
After a lifetime of dieting, and feeling guilty over eating certain foods, and fearing that people will think I am an addict, I have been pondering recently about whether I really am an addict to certain foods, or whether I simply like them.
I must admit though that I need to watch myself. Because the occasional treat comes around to more than just occasional, I easily pile on the pounds. But, is that really addiction? Or do I just need to be more careful?
I haven’t got the answer of course, because I still have to control what foods I have in the house because I know for sure that sooner or later I would eat them all. Probably in one go!
But I count myself Free. That means that I have learnt what freedom really means. If I want a scone when I am out, I have one. If I need painkillers to dull the constant pain of Fibromyalgia, I will take them. If my husband needs strong painkillers at times, it is a comfort to both of us that we have the ones that work.
I might reiterate here about the advice we have been given down through the years about what foods are good or bad for us. The debacle with eggs twenty years ago led people to believe that they should not have more than two eggs a week. That was eventually disproved.
We all know the one about red wine and how the advice changes from day to day in the press.
Cholesterol is also a sworn enemy. But did you know that the body needs cholesterol? It is our friend. And no, it won’t be controlled by diet. Yet we have been conned into believing that we should keep the levels down. But the older you are, the higher your cholesterol is naturally. It is the body’s way of healing. Yet authorities are hell-bent on making even the frailest of us keeping our cholesterol levels down.
In case you are wondering why I say this, listen to Zoe Harcombe talking about it. She was the woman who wrote the paper three years ago, on Saturated fat, and led to a lot of media cover about Butter not being harmful.
And what does Society use to make us believe all this? Fear! Pure and simple. And the word Addict is a very useful tool for them.
So am I an addict? Well up to now I have said that I am, but now I believe that I simply love refined carbohydrates, but I need to limit the amount that I eat.
I also love games such as Colour by Numbers, and also Solitaire on my computer. Recently I have been playing them and listening to audio-books at the same time. But all that means is that I have a desire to do that to help me relax. I just need to be careful that I do not spend more time than is sensible, to prevent me from doing the other things that I love.
So, perhaps we need to be aware of how much we deny ourselves the things we desire, by worrying about becoming an addict.
But please don’t see this as carte blanche for having anything you want, to the detriment of your wellbeing. I am only sharing my thoughts, not teaching!
If you want to know more about the way to find what diet suits you as an individual, try this;
I have not written a blog now for some time, but today I feel from the soul that I need to write this.
Am I a heretic?
I have written a book called The Truth Has Set Me Free, and there has been a delay in publishing, for many reasons, the most recent one being that God knew that there was a Post-script to be added.
And now, I have just finished reading a book called Beneath a Heretic’s Wings.
In The Truth Has Set Me Free I share the experience of growing up in a Pentecostal Fundamentalist family and church. And how that upbringing in no way prepared me for what was to come in later life.
I always felt an outcast. I never felt like one of them while in the church, yet was afraid to say anything or leave. On the other hand, neither did I feel at home in the other world because I had been taught that I was separated from other people because I was “Saved”. That I had given my heart to the Lord and therefore I was better than everyone else.
The book “Beneath a Heretics Wings,” is written by two women who were right there in the path of the persecution handed out to a man called Carlton Pearson, who is featured in the Netflix film, Come Sunday.
He is a Pentecostal Bishop in the USA, and until the year 2001 went along with the teaching that there is a hell and only those who are “Saved” would not go there.
To quote Carlton’s words, “The whole world is saved, they just don’t know it.”
He believes from the heart that we are all saved. That God loves everybody, no matter what race, creed, religion, belief or otherwise. And that a loving God is not going to send anyone to Hell.
I first came across his book with the long title GOD is not a Christian, nor a Jew, Muslim, Hindu ….. and with the subtitle, God dwells with Us, in Us, Around Us, as Us.
He has also written a book explaining his convictions, called The Gospel of Inclusion.
I had already started writing my book The Truth, and Carlton’s words blew my mind and my heart.
Where is the love of God?
Now two years later I have just finished Beneath a Heretic’s Wings. And I am shocked at the testimony of these two women, who stood by him, Cassandra L. McLellan and Teresa L. Reed. The way that the Pentecostal Church treated Carlton and those who stayed with him was abysmal.
I am shocked that Christian people could not show the love that God has for themselves, and yet they could not share it with someone who had the guts to speak out. He was a Pastor of a church of Five thousand or so people, and after being cast out, was preaching to one hundred and fifty people. He lost everything, including friends and money. But he never lost his love of God, or anybody else.
And he was accused of being a Heretic and a False Prophet.
He has now slowly recovered, and is gracious, forgiving and loving to everyone, and is preaching the Gospel of Inclusion – everyone is included in God’s love, and not just those who are “saved”. You can see him on YouTube.
Time to be authentic
So, I have decided that it is time for me to speak out. I am aware that when my book The Truth Has Set Me Free comes out, there will be some who are dismayed that I seem to have given up my faith. I have already had a close friend and a cousin who have written to me about my lost eternity (another way of describing Hell). Their emails are preachy, and they believe that only what the Bible says is right.
They forget that the word ‘hell’ is rarely seen in the Bible. And that if I or anyone else wants to prove a point, they can always find something in it to support their point. That is the secret of the Bible and why it has always been a best seller. And may I say; why it has always been an inspiration to so many. I thank God that I live in an age, where we can check it out and not just listen to what we hear from the pulpit, both in the history of how it was written and the content. Something that we all need to do.
Time to be of courage
The book Beneath a Heretic’s Wings has made me realise that it takes some courage to be a Heretic, but if that is what I am in certain people’s eyes, then so be it.
Heretics in days gone by were killed, burnt at stake, tortured and so on. So I must admit that I don’t know if I would have been brave enough to be one in those circumstances. But in the 21st Century there is a Spiritual shift, and I am glad that I am part of it.
There will be more blogs to come of this nature, and there will also be a Facebook group based on The Truth. I do not claim to know all the answers, but I know that The Truth for me has been a wonderful, soul experience. It has changed me, I am always at peace, even when I become distressed, or depressed, or seemed to have got something wrong (depending on who’s eyes are judging that last one).
One of my specialist subjects on my Website, blogs, and Facebook groups is “Ageing With Vitality” so I was particularly interested when I came across this quote from The Gospel of Inclusion.
“The first thing that goes when you begin to think is your theology. If you stick too long to a theological point of view, you become stagnant with no vitality.” OSWALD CHAMBERS
That is so true, because just listening to the preacher and not studying and finding out for yourself, is a cop-out. I have been studying and researching for myself for the last twenty-five years or so, and have come to see the Truth for myself. And what is more, I will continue to be openminded, loving and accepting of people from all backgrounds, and all belief systems. And I will give them the respect that I hope they will give to me.
Therein lies the peace of God
I know for sure that I am free from all the trappings of the fear of hell, and not being good enough. And I am loved by God.
Do you sometimes wonder whether you are a heretic? Or perhaps you may still want to be a Christian, but don’t want all the trappings of an old doctrine that has misrepresented what a true Christian can be.
In the next few weeks, my book “The Truth Has Set Me Free” will be published.
Although I recently posted a synopsis about it, I thought that perhaps I could add a few more thoughts. So here goes.
Many of you have seen that synopsis that I sent out on the week beginning 15th October 2018, and there has been a great response to it, with many pre-orders coming in. For which I thank you.
Firstly a little more about what the book is about and not. I have had one response from a person who said that they would not want to read the book if it is a rant about the Pentecostal church. It is not. What it is, however, is the story of how the teachings of Christian fundamentalism, including other denominations, damaged my judgements and my self-image, right up until the age of forty. And how these poor judgements had dire consequences. Resulting in Divorce, bankruptcy and succumbing to two con men.
I take sole responsibility for those bad decisions and do not in any way blame the church. The story is all about forgiveness and love, both for myself and for those people in my life, who may have hurt me.
Just like anyone else in this human experience, I had choices. There are many people who are happy with the teachings of those churches, and I will not say who is right and who is wrong. Just like me, they have a choice.
Secondly, it is a picture of my childhood in the forties and fifties. I grew up in Cornwall and Devon in the UK. At this time, the UK, as well as other countries, were still recovering from the second-world-war, and there was a tremendous sense of lack. But we had freedom and the countryside was not so far away as it is these days with towns and cities expansion.
I describe the games we played and the many hours of enjoyment exploring the woods and fields, And I also describe the mischief I got up to which got me into a lot of trouble.
Jumping ahead to my teens, that freedom was curtailed. Thanks to misunderstandings and my Mothers and the church I belonged to at the time, intransigence and being influenced by what I see as narcissistic teachings, which the family adhered to in every way.
Then I became a very young bride, and at the age of nineteen moved away from home to a new city. Because I had been taught that the world was a nasty, frightening place and I should keep away from it, I was very naïve. And unprepared for real life. I became homesick, depressed and began bingeing on food for comfort.
These feelings were to stay with me until the age of forty or so. Then at a very difficult time in my life, someone said to me “You need to ask yourself, who is Trish and where is she going?” At the age of seventy plus now, I am still evolving, but can see more clearly that I am good enough and that is one reason why I wrote: “The Truth Has Set Me Free.”
Since becoming a Life coach and studying what makes people tick, I have seen what had been amiss in my life. But life had changed for the better after a divorce, loss of all my worldly possessions and a new marriage, to a well-read man.
The point of the book is that I want people to understand that they can change. And with that change comes new perception.
It is now twelve months since my Mother died, and I finished the book a few months later, having had new insights into why my Mother had been so myself unhappy in life.
Since then I have not only done more reading and learning, I have applied the truth to my life and freed myself up from the bounds of depression, bingeing on food and the feeling of abandonment and not being good enough.
At the time of writing, I am taking care of my husband as he ages and succumbs to vagaries of illness and ageing. And I can do it with joy and compassion, thanks to the grace and love that I know flows through me. And knowing that the past is in the past, and I am truly living in the present, in the “Now”.
I would like you to read this book with an open mind, remembering what I said here about love and forgiveness. I do not have any bitterness or issues with anyone who chooses whatever beliefs or teachings they want to, except in the case where they impose those beliefs onto others.
The Dalai Lamma once said that doing that is a form of abuse.
If you want to read the book, and own a signed copy, please would you support me by making a Pre-order. This means that I will send you one the moment I receive them from the publisher. You can do this by bank transfer, Pay Pal or cheque. The amount is £10 Please email me or contact me on Private Messaging on Facebook. email@example.com
On my birthday this year, I can truly say that “The Truth Has Set Me Free.”
Life in my older years is proving to be the very best ones of my time on Planet Earth. I am healthy; I am living in Abundance, I am loved, and I am full of the joy and peace that passes all understanding.
Like everyone else, I do have adversity and challenges along the way, and at times I doubt and fear. But I know for certain that everything is here to help me. And underneath it all, I know that the Universe has my back.
I have my new book coming out very soon now. Publishing a book is a long drawn out process, but I promise that it will be here in the next couple of months.
“The Truth Has Set Me Free” (the illustration above has one word change, because its a draft copy of the cover) is a story of how I was brought up in a Christian Fundamentalist faith. It describes my upbringing in the fifties, my engagement and first marriage at the tender age of sixteen and nineteen respectively.
There was fun as a child, and that fun is described in the book, including the games we played and the physical freedom of children in the nineteen fifties.
But as I got into my early teens, life became lonely and experienced an isolation which lasted for many years.
I describe how the fundamental upbringing had affected two previous generations. Which resulted in heartache, narcissism and for myself late adolescence at the age of forty, having not had one as a teenager.
The truth for me has come about since I saw the light at the age of forty, which like many other women, was followed by Divorce. But I was also conned out of thousands of pounds because of my naivety, became bankrupt and lost everything I had ever accumulated, including a large business, houses, my dogs and furniture.
But the fact that everything is sent to help us is so true. I met a wonderful man, who became my second husband, and he set me on the road to learning. In the last twenty-six years since I met him, I have developed a thirst for knowledge. Part of my upbringing was that knowledge was not important. The main aim in life was to be saved and get to Heaven which carried on into my first marriage and becoming totally immersed in those beliefs. That meant that many books that threatened to reveal anything other than the teaching in those churches were banned.
Then in 2011 at the age of 67, I studied at University to become a Life coach. The learning there opened up a whole new way of seeing life.
All along, the Truth was setting me free from the bondage of the past, and the chains that had bound me to the belief that I was not good enough.
Now, I have reached a point in my life that is another transition. From the rush and pressure of being the best, and having to work at it, I can now trust wholly in the Divine.
Just before I left any established church, I had what I realise now was a light bulb moment, when I told other Christians, that the teachings of the church limited God. I realised that God was the Universe and everything around us. But fundamentalist belief attempted to trap God into a set of beliefs, a building, a set of people who thought they knew better than anyone else. Most of all that only Christians and “Saved” ones at that; could inherit the Kingdom. They taught and still do, that there is an Apocalypse coming and only Christians would be saved from that because they would be taken up into the air to meet the Saviour. Known as the Second Coming.
If you don’t know what I am talking about, I should give it a miss!
What I know to be the Truth, is what I had said then, without all the knowledge that I have accumulated since then. There has had to be a lot of forgiveness on my part, both for others, and myself.
The book has taken me over two years to write, and in the last year, the end of the book took on a life of its own, describing my Mothers death and how my brother and myself at long last understood why she had such an unhappy life.
Simply because she had never allowed herself to be loved, both by God and her beloved husband, my Dad. And in turn us and anyone else who wanted to show any compassion for her in her last days. She never understood that; We are all one; we are all part of God; we are all equal; we can all become conscious of those facts, and we are all loved. That love is a vital force; stronger than faith or hope.
We are all created to be the person we are, without having to be saved again by the same being who created us.
God is bigger than having to send someone to die, to correct the mistake he made when he created humans.
I have not accumulated a fortune; I do not live in a mansion, I don’t even own a car. But I feel as if I have riches beyond measure.
I feel quite amused now when I hear people who already have more than enough money say; When I win the lottery I will ………………………………….
I feel as if I have won more than the lottery. Because I know the Truth and it has set me free.
By the way, you may be wondering why the new word “Wizzdom” is included in the title of this blog. It is my new brand name, to cover all the hats I wear in supporting people. My specialities are; Weight and Food Management, Ageing with Vitality, Facilitating end of life planning and I am a Funeral Celebrant. I think that word “Wizzdom”, suggested by a friend, just about covers the wisdom I have gained over a lifetime of experiences and adventures in living.
Before you embark on any programme for losing weight, it is worth while asking yourself why?
Once you decide that you are in no doubt that you want or need to lose, and you are not just jumping on the proverbial bandwagon of not accepting and loving yourself, the next step is to make an intent. But we shall talk about that in another article.
There are many reasons why people want to lose weight. Among them are the following:
A special occasion
Your own wedding
Modelling or dancing
You are obese or really overweight
You just want to have a flat belly
Post baby fat.
Post illness or surgery
Read on and consider which ones you think apply to you.
Do you look at yourself in the mirror and wish you were seven pounds or so lighter?
Are you being realistic about this?
Have you ever been 7lbs lighter than you are today?
If so, how long ago was it?
Do you have two sets of clothes, one each of the bearing of the 7lbs, or its absence when you have starved it off?
Will being 7lbs lighter help with all other problems in your life? If so, which ones are they?
Would you really be healthier? Would the 7lbs less help with such things as arthritis, for instance?
How would you plan to lose the 7lbs?
What are your plans for your future eating habits, when you have lost it?
In this day of television, magazines and social networks, it is becoming more common for girls even at the age of ten to be looking at themselves and asking their friends if they are fat. Recently I was with a thirteen-year old in a restaurant, asking her mother how many calories were in a particular food on the menu. She has taken on board the message that to have a rounded womanly body is unacceptable.
Young girls talk endlessly about what they look like in a particular outfit, fretting more about whether it makes them look fatter than the colour or style. A lot of damage is done through peer pressure, and a lot of misinformation is handed out too!
People suffering from eating disorders, such as Anorexia or Bulimia often begin their problems by worrying about calories. But losing weight by counting calories is a myth and this subject will be covered in more detail later in the book.
Consider how much you allow other people to influence what size you think you should be.
Nearly every day newspapers or magazines feature a celebrity who has either put on or lost weight. Too much on or too much off. Do you think it is fair that these celebrities have to live their lives forever having to worry about being caught on camera and personal details about their bodies discussed by all? Sometimes it can just be the camera angle. Or a certain look on their faces and the camera has caught something that the journalist interprets the wrong way. But it sells papers, and that is the excuse they give time and time again!
What is so tragic about this is that people are taken in, especially young girls and increasingly young men too. In June 2012, there was a story about a fourteen-year old girl who had committed suicide. She had developed Bulimia and even though she was beautiful, she had been worried about her weight. She had ended up loathing herself! After this event, one or two magazines started to change their ways, but still the tendency is to spot the skinny celebrity and how she did it.
Consider what you think about how the media treats celebrities.
Which magazines could be having a negative influence on you and how you perceive your body?
A SPECIAL OCCASION
Do you have a holiday coming up?
Are you going to a friend or a relative’s wedding?
Are you going to be the mother of the bride?
So you want to lose weight for that. Do you really think so? Because if you are only losing the weight for the holiday bikini then you will most likely soon put it back on again. If you buy an outfit for the wedding, lose the weight, look and feel your best after a lot of starvation and then put it all on again, would you consider that to be a waste of time and money? The outfit worn only once ends up at the back of the wardrobe!
Consider how many times you have done this, or know someone who has.
YOUR OWN WEDDING
You really want to lose weight so that you will look your best on the big day, which is understandable, and many people do it. But my observation is this; time and time again, the bride or groom or even both go on a diet. They may even join a slimming club to do it.
They get down to the desired weight, and they walk down the aisle looking their very best. Then when the reception starts, it is time to let their hair down, and all thoughts of the diet are put into the past, and forgotten. It doesn’t matter anymore; they achieved their goal for the day so now it’s time to eat, drink and be merry. The diet is over and within a matter of days the weight starts to go back on and within weeks they are right back to where they started before the diet!
Why do people do this? After all, the couple loved one another enough to decide to get married before the diet! They then decided that they really needed to change. They needed to look better than they already did. So in order to commit to each other they needed to look different?
That one day as a slim person was good. They looked good. They were slim. But suddenly once they were married it didn’t matter. By losing that weight, they lowered their metabolism. Their bodies went into famine mode and started to preserve every little bit of fat, and from the wedding onwards it is downhill all the way! They have got themselves into a lifetime of struggling with their weight for the sake of one day!
What are your thoughts about this?
Have you or someone you know ever lost weight for their wedding?
How successful were they and did they keep the weight off afterwards?
What excuses did they have if they put it back on?
Do you consider that it was worth it?
Are you thinking of losing weight for your own wedding? If so, maybe you could consider what I have just said and decide that this won’t be just another diet, but will be a change of
MODELLING OR DANCING.
Many people in these professions are living on starvation diets. They strive to be an unrealistic weight, which can lead them to becoming emaciated. Models have become so thin that they seem to look all skin and bones. Eating disorders such as Anorexia and Bulimia are very common within these professions.
Have you or someone you know been in danger of doing this?
In these cases, many people need professional help.
What are your thoughts about this?
YOU ARE OBESE OR REALLY OVERWEIGHT
Now we come to the people who really need to lose weight. They are obese or overweight more than the odd stone. They may have already been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. Perhaps they may have had a heart attack or some other heart problem.
Or they might have got to the point where getting about is very difficult. Seats on public transport are getting too small, or they cannot walk very well. Their joints are playing up and painful.
These people have a vast choice in how they are going to do it. There are so many diets around that they just do not know where to start. Each diet is giving them different information.
The magazines feature people who have lost the weight, and they look terrific! I featured in one myself and had a wonderful day having a makeover and being pampered for the photo shoot, and it made me feel fantastic!
Bookshops and the internet abound with different diets. Headlines in the paper scream at you. Special editions include a new diet. But most of them are just a different version of a low calorie regime.
Whichever diet you choose, if you survive beyond the first few days and stick to it strictly, and it is your first diet, you will lose weight. You may lose 10% of the weight you want; you may lose it all. If you do get close to your goal, you may find losing the last few pounds just as big a struggle as the whole diet put together.
If you are with a slimming club, you may, as I have a few times, have the members cheering and clapping when you can shout “I’ve done it!” It’s a great feeling! Then the leader hands you your badge and explains the maintenance programme, and so begins the struggle to keep the weight off!
However, it is well known that 98% of people who lose weight this way put it back on again and many people put on even more than they have lost. I don’t want to play devil’s advocate here for those who are perhaps already struggling with losing weight on a diet, but you may want to think about what you are going to do when you reach your goal.
I am not saying at this point that you should abandon what you are doing. Just consider what you are doing is for life, and use the thoughts in this book to help you to map it out.
Find a way of eating that will be for life and not just to lose weight.
Remember the statistics say that 98% of people who lose weight, put it back on again and more besides.
This is because they are not adopting a new lifestyle and way of eating and the way that they think!This is worth repeating.
Think about your plans to keep the weight off, once you have lost it.
Read and research to find out what you will think would suit you if you could choose how to do this.
This book will give you a framework to make a start on designing a diet for life.
POST BABY FAT
Women are designed to have babies! Even if they do not want a baby by choice or cannot have them for some reason, women’s bodies have all the biological necessities for reproduction. Even before you conceive, your body prepares itself every month, just in case.
Women’s hips are wider than men’s. Her thighs are thicker. (That is why you will find that if you try to wear men’s jeans the waist is disproportionate to the hips and thighs.)
Her fat storage system is different; that is why men lose weight more easily than women.
When she has given birth, she is expected in nature to breastfeed the baby. So she preserves her fat and needs nourishing foods to do that.
The womb takes six weeks to revert to its nearly normal size. She has flabby skin around the abdominal area, which if she is lucky or works out at the gym will gradually retract back and leave her with a reasonably flat stomach. But most women find it very difficult and may not ever get that flat stomach back. So what do women do?
A lot of them put up with it, because they are too busy or tired to do anything about it, which is natural.
Or they go on a restrictive slimming diet!
Consequently, they are not getting the proper nourishment that their body needs at this time. Often they just give up and stuff themselves with takeaways or whatever they can get their hands on!
Women can end up feeling that somehow there is something wrong with them, when they see celebrities getting their figures back within a very short time. They fret and worry and talk endlessly about getting to the gym to get back in shape. Why?
I wonder if it is because they are trying to live up to a higher standard than nature intends. If she eats properly with good, nourishing, real food, she will find that she is nourishing the baby properly, and herself and her family. She won’t have to join a gym for weight loss, although she may want to tone up! She certainly will not do all this on crisps and takeaways!
But she will stand a better chance of gradually toning up and being healthy if she does not go onto a restrictive calorie counted diet.
If you have recently had a baby and are struggling with this, what ideas have you had to lose weight?
Do you have a plan for healthy eating?
AFTER ILLNESS OR SURGERY
Due to lack of mobility, boredom or just people bringing them too many chocolates, people often lose weight at first during an illness or after surgery and then proceed to put it back on and more besides.
Women who have had a hysterectomy often put weight on due to hormones being disrupted and causing depression, but more often than not it is because of eating comfort foods and because of boredom. However, if it is just the hormones then the amount of weight increase should be no more than about 5 lbs.
This can apply to any weight gain when hormones are involved, including taking the contraceptive pill. Many people who are grossly overweight will blame the fact that they are on the pill. But the difference is really only a few pounds.
I’m afraid that the rest is because of what they eat, which is more than likely processed, refined carbohydrate.
Take an honest look at the reasons why you think you may have put on weight if you have suffered from an illness or disability.
I JUST WANT TO HAVE A FLAT BELLY.
Nature designed women to be rounded. Only fifty years ago, Marilyn Monroe was hailed as a star. She would be referred to as a celebrity in modern times, but Marilyn was outstanding. The reason for this was her figure, of full breasts, narrow waist, wide hips, and a rounded belly.
What was referred to as an hour glass figure.
She was the equivalent of a size fourteen these days.
Not that we have to put up with a bulging belly, but we were not designed to have the flat belly that we seem to think we should have!
Now, fifty years later women have become famous for being the opposite. They want to look boyish, and they want to “choose” how to look. Fighting against what nature designed them to be. If they have big breasts, they want small ones, or if they have small breasts, they want big ones. They certainly do not want a rounded belly!
The Oxford Companion to the Body, which can be found on the internet, talks about the extremes that people go to, to change their body shape. Extreme dieting leads on to Eating disorders.
Plastic surgery is used to the ultimate degree, not only changing noses or face lifts, but tummy tucks, thigh tucks and so on. Millions of pounds and dollars are spent on trying to look good.
There is more and more discontent with the way we look. Some older celebrities look hideous as they attempt to hold back time.
Although much of this reading is directed towards women, men reading this can read between the lines and see where it can apply to them too. Men of course need to look at their belly, as that is where they generally store their fat. .
Many of us have lost the ability to accept our bodies and images for what they are. Society is obsessed with being thin. Lives are dominated by diets, what to eat and what not to eat.
Yet we are still in the midst of an Obesity Epidemic!
We have wandered far away from being natural humans. Our stores are full of junk food. Our bodies are unacceptable. We need to get back nearer to what nature provided for us. With both our body image and with what we eat!
We need to celebrate our bodies, not keep fighting them!
Which parts of your body would you change if you could?
Consider carefully whether you are being completely realistic?
Stand in front of the mirror and look at them one at a time and consider whether any of them could be changed in a natural way.
I have also decided to add in another factor for older women.
As our body grows older, there is no doubt that it will do everything it can to preserve itself.
The Primal need in our bodies will save and store as much fat as it can and as we get older and the body begins to break down, that will happen all the more.
Therefore, if you are over the age of about sixty, you may need to settle for a slightly higher weight than your mind is telling you to be.
So from that we can conclude that we have been led up the wrong path with NHS guidelines saying that we must be below 25 to be healthy.
The same can be said of our cholesterol levels. We do not need to constantly concerned about keep them low. But that is another matter, although it does give us some indication about how we have all been like sheep and led astray as far as our health is concerned.
So, while considering whether you really need to be constantly worried about losing fat, add this latest thought to your list.
Please follow and like us: