Flowing with the Flow – 3

How do we get in The Flow?

I guess no one knows the definitive answer to this question, but this little recipe may be helpful…

  1. Figure out who you are, what you were brought here to do, and follow your bliss. Do what you love and love what you do. Express yourself. Be creative. Apply yourself, refine your craft, and become the best you can be. Then, immerse yourself totally in what you are doing, enter that dimension where time and space are altered, and lose yourself in it.
  2. Meditate. Practice stillness, silence, mindfulness, present-moment awareness. Pay attention. Be alert. Be present. Be a master in the art of mindful living. See the beauty. See the Magic, the Mystery and the Miracles. Be amazed. Be grateful. Be happy.
  3. Don’t get distracted by thoughts that don’t pertain to the present moment. Catch your thoughts, acknowledge them, release them, and return to this moment. Be here, now. Do not spend too much time in the past, replaying old mental tapes of an unsettled and unsettling past. Let go of memories that bring up feelings such as regret, resentment and remorse. Don’t think too much about what lies ahead either, and if you do, think positive. As much as possible, be here, now. Remember: Be not afraid. Don’t worry, be happy!
  4. Simplify. Unclutter your life. Get rid of distractions. Let go of lives that have played themselves out and do not serve you anymore. Focus on what is important for you now, at the current stage of your life.
  5. Immerse yourself in nature. Never underestimate the power of nature to bring you to a flow state.
  6. Practice gratitude. Cultivate a grateful heart.
  7. Clean your vessel. Become the hollow bone. Remove the inner obstacles — negative feelings such as envy, anger and hatred — and allow Love to flow freely through you. Send love, all the time, to everyone. Send love to yourself, and do this regardless of time: send love to your old and to your future self.
  8. Empty yourself. Operate with a beginner’s mind. Don’t let your past experiences and ideas taint the here-now. Approach every moment as a new moment, every situation as a new situation, with the freshness and curiosity of a little child.
  9. Be present to another. Give your undivided attention to whoever may be with you at any given time.
  10. Practice kindness, patience and generosity. Become one who beams rays of light and love.
  11. Practice optimism. Believe that everything is getting better. Believe that Heaven is here if we want it to be.

mountain landscape

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Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

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– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

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– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

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– “Silent Peace Walk”

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Flowing with the Flow – 2

What is “The Flow?”

“The Flow” are those moments when we feel that we have been transported to another dimension — another place or sphere of existence — where we experience an intensification of senses, feelings and emotions so powerful as to produce a kind of trance that leads to a dissociation from everything but the experience itself. Those are moments of total immersion in the here-now, when we feel as if we are out of ourselves, observing ourselves doing great things, and feeling that we are not doing them, but they are being done through us. In sports, we say of athletes who are operating at this flow state as being “in the zone.”

The Flow are those moments of:

  • rapture
  • transport to other dimensions
  • altered and heightened perception
  • unrestricted self-confidence
  • masterful performance and execution
  • joyful ecstasy and delight
  • overpowering emotion
  • intense feeling
  • euphoria
  • bliss
  • elation
  • exaltation
  • poetic inspiration
  • supreme happiness
  • utter joy
  • peaceful contentment

flow green

 

Remember : This is our Garden and our Playground. Let us enjoy the beauty of the Garden and have fun in the Playground. Let us make the Garden more beautiful and the Playground more enjoyable. And let us share our toys, because our friends’ joy increases our own.

Remember: We have to work on ourselves and hone our skills, but we also have to remember that the flow is a state of non-doing, of non-striving. We don’t get in the flow through our efforts, our willpower, our thinking, our mind, our intellect. Going after a state of flow does not work. The more we chase it, the more it moves away. We experience the flow spontaneously through our soul, our heart, our acceptance, our mindful living. Stop, and let it come to you. Say, “I allow. I am ready to receive.”

Remember: The best thing to do is to engage in the process of “emptying ourselves,” doing this diligently and continually, letting go of thoughts, ideas, expectations, desires, in order to live every moment as a new and fresh one, allowing he Life Force Energy to flow freely in us and through us.

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Let’s stay in touch. Like Peaceful Ways on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peacefulways

Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

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Book Cover Image

– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

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– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

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– “Silent Peace Walk”

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Flowing with the Flow – 1

To be “in the zone” is to be in that desirable state in which you are fully immersed and completely absorbed by the activity at hand, feeling energized and focused. When you are “in the zone,” you are “flowing with the flow,” achieving great things effortlessly, enjoying the process, and feeling happy.

To be “in the zone” is to be totally “in the here-now,” without entertaining any thoughts that do not pertain to the present moment. When we are “in the zone,” we are completely immersed in what we are doing, and we don’t think about anything else. In fact, we feel that we are not actually doing anything; we feel that the doing is being done through us. Our perception of time and space is altered, and we feel that time slows down, that everything is unfolding in slow motion, and that we are mere observers of ourselves while we do extraordinary things. We become one with our environment, and our sense of being a separated self vanishes; we merge with the Universe and experience oneness. This state of expanded awareness allows us to do amazing feats.

To “be in the zone” is a profound experience that can be labeled as spiritual. This deep connection and communion with everything gives us a new understanding of life and prepares us to face death as a peaceful transition.

Our goal should be to be “in the zone” as often as possible.

The paradox is that we have to first put in some effort in order to break through a threshold and reach that state in which effort is no longer needed. Then, we are taken over by a Higher Force that uses us — this refined instrument that we have become –to effortlessly bring what needs to be brought to the world.

I believe that before we reach that ‘flow state’ in which we surrender and allow the Divine Force to flow freely through us, we have to improve ourselves. In other words, we have to do some things in order to reach that level in which we don’t do anything, and great things are done through us.

Apply yourself to learn, but live in a state where you don’t struggle to learn because you have realized that knowledge and wisdom are already in you, and that you already know what needs to be known. Apply yourself to do, and reach that point when you don’t do, but simply allow the Divine Force to do through you. Experience the wondrous shift from human-doing to human-being… a human who is in the zone, flowing with the flow.

may-the-flow-be-with-you

P.S. The desire to be better is praiseworthy, and the commitment to do what is necessary to improve oneself is honorable, but let us be aware that the motivation to improve ourselves is, most of the time, a selfish one. That’s OK, as long as we are cognizant of the arrogance of the ego that takes us to compare ourselves with others in order to give us emotional rewards through feelings of superiority. For instance, even on the journey to attain spiritual enlightenment the ego wants to feel that it is “better than” someone else… “I am obviously more evolved and more spiritual than her because I do this and that and she, clearly, does not.”

Pay attention and be aware of what the ego is engendering. Change your focus from selfishness to selflessness, and make of the effort and dedicated work you are putting into your personal development your sacrificial gift for the betterment of others and the world.

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Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

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– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

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– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

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– “Silent Peace Walk”

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We Are Not Our Thoughts

To live mindfully is to deliver on the commitment to live with the intention to pay attention to the present moment, every moment, moment after moment, without judging, criticizing, liking or disliking, but just calmly accepting whatever is given to us. To live mindfully is to live fully awake, alert and aware of what is going on in the here-now.

Unfortunately, we have the tendency to give too much attention to our thoughts, especially frightening ones. By allowing our minds to run out of control, a sense of despair and that we are powerless to control our lives, many times, takes hold of us. In such moments it is important to ask ourselves, “Why am I feeling this way? What is the thought that is creating this feeling in me?” and remember that the dramatic plots with tragic consequences that we have imagined in the past rarely came true.

The practice of Mindfulness Meditation develops in us the ability to better observe our thoughts and emotions.  By becoming  more aware of what we are thinking and feeling, we become better able to control our moods, which, ultimately, enhances the quality of our lives.

As you get better at observing your thoughts, you will conclude, as I did, that we are not our thoughts, and that we should not pay too much attention to them. You will realize that thoughts are mysterious entities with a life of their own: they spontaneously appear and vanish, and no one really knows where they come from and where they go. You will also realize that thoughts are not always accurate. For instance, have you noticed how our minds can entertain contradictory thoughts? Have you noticed that you may be thinking one thing, one moment, and in the next moment you may be thinking another that is the total opposite of what you were thinking before? We have to realize that we have the ability to imagine the most absurd things, and that what we may be thinking is not always correct, and that what we may be afraid of is not certain to happen. And since our minds are like blank canvases upon which we can paint anything, we can choose not to get too involved with thoughts that produce fear and anxiety, but, instead, use our imagination to populate our minds with positive thoughts.

Mindfulness meditation is a great tool of awareness and mind control that can really enhance the quality of anyone’s life. I encourage you to meditate with regularity and to be mindful of what you may be thinking and what may be happening in the present moment. Practice CARR. Catch your thought or feeling. Acknowledge it, examine it, take a good look at it, and see what is behind it. Then release it, and return your attention to the present moment, to the here-now. And don’t criticize yourself for feeling a certain way, one that you think you should not be feeling. Be gentle with yourself, honoring and accepting what is, all the time. And remember to remind yourself often, “I am not my thoughts.”

Namaste. ~ Piero

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Let’s stay in touch. Like Peaceful Ways on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peacefulways

Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

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– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

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– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

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– “Silent Peace Walk”

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www.SilentPeaceWalk.org

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The Miracle in Your Mind

“In the wisdom of uncertainty lies the freedom from our past, from the known, which is the prison of past conditioning. And in our willingness to step into the unknown, the field of all possibilities, we surrender ourselves to the creative mind that orchestrates the dance of the universe.” ~ Deepak Chopra

Recently, I got together with some friends, fellow spiritual explorers, and Wally told us, “I wish you all a good case of amnesia. I wish that you all may be able to completely forget the past and live totally, or as much as possible, in the here-now.”

There is great wisdom in these words.

We must let go of the past to live in the present. We must interrupt the constant playback of memories and old stories in our heads in order to appreciate the present moment, being grateful for all the magic, mystery and miracles it contains.

Our friend Kevin reminded us of the power of our thoughts, and the beauty and wisdom of populating our minds with good thoughts, with images of health, happiness, prosperity, wealth and peace. He reminded us to stop wallowing in our self-pity, and to stop telling those stories of our suffering, distress, or misfortune, the ones we tell to evoke sympathy. He encouraged us to let go of those “poor me” stories and replace them with stories of success and victory. He reminded us to look at those who have it worse than we do, and to express gratitude for all that was given to us, always. He talked about giving thanks for the good that we already have and all the good that is coming our way. He encouraged us to engage, or reengage, in a daily discipline of meditation, imagination and visualization of the life and world we want.

I thanked him for re-igniting in me the desire to do what is important: to be grateful and give thanks. I am now motivated to reengage in a more diligent practice of expressing gratitude and imagining the great outcomes I want for my life.

Here’s something that Kevin wrote years ago, and that he recently rediscovered:

“The miracle is in your mind. But just the same, so is every negative outcome. Think you can’t and you won’t. It is time to shift your awareness. It is time to expect miracles. It is time to have gratitude for what you have. Without gratitude, we live in a state of want. We need to wake up to the fact that what we THANK about, we bring about. If you turn over your lives and your thoughts and your desires to God, you are going to be amazed and astonished by what comes to you. This is where the magic and the miracles happen. You and I are the only ones who create our reality. God gave you and me free will to become and have anything we want. He believes in you. He believes that you should be happy, healthy and prosperous. Is that what you wish for yourself? It is time for change. It is time for renewal. It is time to realize that the miracle of your life, the miracle of your destiny, the miracle of your dreams lies in the miracle of your mind. Ask for it. Seek it. Knock on the door. And be prepared to receive the many gifts and blessings that are waiting for you. It is the promise of God. It was the many stories told by Jesus. It is the many people who have come to pass in and through this world that have given us the continued revelation of God. It is time for action! It is time to believe in the miracle in your mind.” ~ Reverend Kevin McGee, in his sermon “The Miracle in Your Mind.”

I love the part when he says, “what we THANK about, we bring about.” There is great wisdom in these words. We have to constantly remind ourselves to practice to imagine that we are in the future, already living our ideal lives, while seeing ourselves giving thanks for every good thing that happened to us. In other words, we must mentally project ourselves to our ideal futures, and, then, feel how good it feels, “remember” how we got there, and give thanks, because what we THANK about, we bring about.

We are called to think properly, to let go of unhealthy thoughts and to populate our minds with good thoughts. Paul, the apostle, instructed us to do that. He said, in Philippians 4:8, “And now, dear brothers and sisters, one final thing. Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise.” Pause and think for a moment about it. Isn’t this a very, very clear instruction?

Practice mindfulness. Be conscious of what you are thinking. Let go of the negative and embrace the positive. Change your thoughts, change you mind, change your choices, change your life!

Namaste. ~ Piero

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Let’s stay in touch. Like Peaceful Ways on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peacefulways

Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

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Book Cover Image

– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

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– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

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– “Silent Peace Walk”

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www.PieroFalci.com

www.SilentPeaceWalk.org

www.peacefulways.org

www.DAPAdiversity.com


 

Perceptions and Reality

EXPERIENCES, PERCEPTIONS, INTERPRETATIONS, MEANINGS, MEMORIES, AND THE CREATION OF STORIES AND WHAT WE CALL “REALITY”

I just read “The Woman on the Beach in Guaymas,” a short story by Sylvia Boorstein in her book, “It’s easier than you think.” It tells the story of two women in the middle of a storm, and how while one is full of fear, the other is relishing in the beauty and power of nature’s spectacle. It shows how different people perceive what happens differently, and how our upbringing and past experiences shape our perceptions and the ways we interpret events.

It seems that reality — everything we assume as indisputably real — is merely a construct of our minds. What we call reality is what our brains create from the way we perceive and interpret what happens. We create stories based on how we interpret our experiences, and they become for us our ‘reality.’ That is why it is said that if we change the way we perceive and interpret events — if we change the meanings we attach to occurrences — we will inevitably change our stories, which will bring about new realities for us.

You probably heard this maxim, “When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”   

Experiments in quantum physics, for instance, demonstrate that the actual act of observing particles changes the particles. So, it makes sense to ask ourselves, “Do we, observers, change the world by merely observing it?”

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CREATING NEW STORIES: PICKING AND CHOOSING, REARRANGING AND ATTACHING NEW MEANINGS TO EVENTS

We have to realize that we are constantly creating all sorts of stories, constantly trying to extract meaning from what happens.

We need to be aware of the stories we create and tell. Sometimes, when we are craving for sympathy and affection, we tell stories of our victimization, stories that highlight our wounds. Other times, when our egos are craving admiration and adulation, we tell stories that highlight our heroic courage in overcoming difficult times. These are the times when our egos are craving to be revered and remembered, which may come from an unconscious desire: the desire to outlive physical existence and be eternal.

We must realize that we are constantly rewriting our stories, and adapting them to different audiences. We pick and choose our memories, and arrange them in new narratives, without taking into consideration that our memories are changing all the time. We would be doing ourselves a favor if we started to doubt the veracity of the stories we tell, and came to conclude that stories are not really true: they are all made up.

Have you heard of the negativity bias, the propensity of our minds to give much more attention to what is negative than what is positive? Well, many of us are always catastrophizing. No matter how good the present moment may be, we are always imagining that something bad is about to happen, that tragedy is just around the corner to hit us. We live in fear, building unnecessary stress and anxiety, which in turn have detrimental effects on our mental and physical health and well-being.

The practical advice for the improvement of life that comes out of all this would be, “Pay attention to the stories you hear, and practice to be skeptical of the stories you are being fed with. Observe deeply, and be extra careful of how you choose to make meaning of what happens. Choose to see thoughts just as thoughts. Choose not to engage, not to allow yourself to be carried away to the future or the past by worrisome stories. Choose to let the stories go and come back to the present moment, always remembering that both the past and the future do not exist except as thoughts in the present moment; they are only thoughts. If you are not happy with your current reality, choose to interpret what has happened to you differently. Attach different meanings to your experiences, and create different stories. By changing your stories, you will create new realities, open up to new possibilities, and change your life.”

But what if we didn’t do any of these things? What if we didn’t judge, didn’t try to derive meaning from the events, didn’t create stories? I believe that we would improve our lives immensely if we let go of our stories, and realized that our attachment to our stories is an impediment to our growth, liberation, and transcendence.

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WHAT REALLY MATTERS

One good advice is to focus on what really matters. And how do we know what really matters,  you may ask? Well, ask Death, the wisest adviser. When faced with impending death, 99% of the things we deemed important lose importance. This is when we will be ready to let go of a series of attachments, desires, and “unnecessary needs,” such as the need to find meaning, the need to create stories, the need to be recognized and remembered, and the need to leave a legacy.

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THE COMPULSION TO DERIVE MEANING FROM WHAT HAPPENS

I think that it is fair to state that we think too much, and spend too much time trying to extract meaning from the occurrences. Can we pause, analyze and come to the conclusion that this is a dis-ease; something that does not allow us to live with ease?

In order to regain our sanity we must curb this compulsion to think, and overthink, and create stories, and engage with them, and be carried away by them. We must see thoughts just as thoughts. We must slow down, meditate, and learn to observe our thoughts. We should befriend the idea that occurrences are just that: occurrences, and that we are the ones attaching either positive or negative meanings to them. We should realize that there is a difference between what happened and the many stories we tell about what happened.

We should realize that we have the power to choose the stories we tell, and that we can tell stories that either empower or dis-empower us. We should realize that we can curb the habit of attaching meaning to our experiences and that we can even refrain from creating stories altogether.

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We also have to be mindful of how much time we spend criticizing, judging, and condemning. We have to realize that we go through life like slaves under the domination of our cravings and aversions. “I like this. I don’t like that. I want more of this. I want none of that.” We are the ones unable to accept “what is,” always wanting something else. We are the ones who trapped our own selves in this never-ending quest for pleasure and avoidance of pain, constantly wanting to maximize what is pleasant and minimize what is unpleasant.

But what would happen if we decided to stop classifying things, people, and events? What would happen to us, and the quality of our lives, if we curbed this impulse to state what is pleasant and what is unpleasant for us? What if we exercised equanimity, and simply accepted people, things, and events as they are, without having to tell ourselves, or anyone else, that we consider them good or bad?

I believe that as we move to empty ourselves of the unnecessary and self-imposed load of overthinking, meaning-attaching, and story-creating, we begin to open space in our lives to receive the blessings of the Universe. It is only when we become able to accept “what is,” that we will be open to receive and appreciate the gifts.

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My good friend Jack, again and again, reminds me to stay in the present. He made a copy of the following passage from Eckhart Tolle’s book, The Power of Now, and gave it to me. “I have learned to offer no resistance to what is; I have learned to allow the present moment to be and to accept the impermanent nature of all things and conditions. Thus have I found peace.” ~ Eckhart Tolle

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FILTERING OUT INFORMATION

We have to realize that although a vast amount of information is coming our way all the time, we are only able to process a small part of it. Our conscious mind can only absorb a fraction of reality, mainly what matches our understanding of what life is. It seems that our brains accept what is in accordance with our knowledge and reject what does not harmonize with our memories and expectations. It is as if we had filters that allow the entrance of that information that matches our stored experience, and keeps out what does not make sense to us. What is new and unexpected has little chance of breaking through and making its way to our conscience.

This explains why different individuals looking at the same event have different perceptions, or see different things altogether.

Have you heard the saying, “people hear what they want to hear?” I am convinced that people hear what they are predisposed to hear. When listening to someone, we all look for those pieces of information that sustain our beliefs, and we reject the majority of those that go against them. Our filters are allowing some bits of information to pass through while keeping others out. We don’t absorb everything that is being said because our brains are selectively looking for what confirms our understanding of the world.

On the other hand, if we have a predisposition to oppose and find err in others, we listen to detect what does not match our beliefs, so we can solidify our position and increase our sense of self by opposing views we don’t accept.

We are not really open to listen to what others have to say. What we do is to pick and choose, and reinterpret what was said so it matches our preconceived ideas. It is very difficult to hear with an open mind — a “beginner’s mind” — with curiosity, attention, and freshness, without judgment, because our beliefs, past experiences, accumulated knowledge, and memories look for those pieces of information that are in alignment with what we already know.

Again, we hear only what we are predisposed to hear.

We have to understand that we don’t hear with our ears; we hear with our brains. We don’t see with our eyes; we see with our brains. Our perceptions are shaped by the things we accept as real and true, by the stories we tell ourselves. We all have our own views of the world, and because we crave security and comfort, we compare our beliefs with each other, we surround ourselves with people who think and understand the world as we do, and we come to agreements of what reality is. We, then, embrace this collective perception, the paradigm of our tribe,as ‘reality.”

This explains why it is so difficult, especially for those of us with untrained minds — those of us unfamiliar with intellectual exploration — to change deep-seated opinions; the moment our understanding of the world is challenged, we feel threatened; fear kicks in, and we close ourselves up.

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“The test of a first rate intelligence is the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function.” F. Scott Fitzgerald, “The Crack-Up”, Esquire Magazine (February 1936).

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The persistent questions are: “Why don’t we allow ourselves to explore and examine what is new? Why do we resist to consider other worldviews? Is it due to fear of the unknown? Or is it because we don’t want to dissent with our group, and be perceived as disloyal? How do we get out of the habitual mind, the one that keeps replaying and running the same old programs and coming up with the same old [and mostly bad] solutions, and begin to take new looks at reality from different angles? Furthermore, since we have been trained to accept what comes through our five senses as real, and to pay little or no attention to our feelings, how do we train ourselves to pay more attention to our intuition? How do we hone our ability to listen to our inner voice, and reach a point where is not so much about making right decisions, as it is about making decisions that ‘feel right?’ Why don’t we pay more attention and take action on our inspirations?”

And the great question, then, seems to be: “Knowing that individual and collective perceptions keep us stuck, and do not invite us to consider new ideas, new visions of life and the universe, new ways of relating to one another and organizing ourselves to live in community, how can we open our minds and begin to absorb new information that challenges our paradigms, and can lead us to embrace new ones?”

SOME ADVICE

I don’t claim to have an answer, but I believe that in order for us to open our minds we must first come to feel, as Socrates did, that an unexamined life is not worth living, and pledge that we will put our fears aside and boldly launch ourselves on a journey of exploration.

We have to accept responsibility for our realities, believing that they were created by us through our chosen thoughts and perceptions, through our own, or our tribe’s interpretation of the occurrences, through the meanings we attached to the events, through the stories we created.

We must commit to deliberately remain open to listen and analyze other points of view with curiosity.

We must decide that we will engage in a practice of questioning ourselves that will lead us to consciously unlearn the self-defeating beliefs we have unconsciously learned. Curiosity, doubt, and skepticism should be our companions.

A good place to begin may be to ponder on the impermanence of all things, and on the unending cycle of birth and death. We should also consider the vastness of the universe and Einstein’s views of unified time, because such reflection has a humbling effect that tames our egos and sets the stage for some radical transformations.

I believe that the process that leads to those life-changing experiences — the epiphany of oneness — demands the practice of some sort of inner work, which, based on my experience, involves silence, solitude, a reverence for nature, and, among other practices, those of mindfulness and gratefulness; a commitment to stay in the present moment, appreciating the simple things in life, while opening ourselves up to receive and to give love.

We should practice and get good at observing and controlling our thoughts, at refraining from comparing, hastily judging, and quickly reacting. We must practice and get good at becoming the masters of the space between stimuli and responses, developing the ability to make time (yes, “make”), ponder, and choose the best responses to the challenges of life. Our goal should be to develop ourselves so we can live mindfully, responding thoughtfully instead of reacting mindlessly to what happens to us.

We have to practice mindful living, paying extreme attention to the here-now, to this present moment, in order to enhance our perceptions, see beyond what we see, and see magic, mystery and miracles everywhere, all the time.

Then we will experience that awakening that allows us to realize that we are, at the same time, body and soul, solid matter and vibrational energy, mortal and immortal, human and spiritual, earthly and divine, separated and united, independent and interdependent, many and one.

We will gain a better understanding of this physical life, of the impermanence of all things, of the cycle of birth and death, and will be blessed with the revelation that life is more, immensely more than what we were ever able to imagine. And once we experience this enhancement of understanding — this awakening, this enlightenment — our perceptions, ideas and beliefs will change, and all fear will subside. We will look at the world and see it differently. Those things we once thought were desirable will seem meaningless. We will look at all the struggle for power and privileges in the world, and will consider it senseless. We will look at all conflicts and squabbles and see them as absurdities. We will realize that when we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change.

When we seriously give consideration that what we accept as reality may not be real, and that, in fact, we may be living in a construct of our own minds — an illusion, if you will — our ability to perceive begins to enhance. And each individual shift in perception will add to the critical mass that will eventually tip the scale, and bring about a great planetary shift in the collective consciousness, when a whole new world — new perceptions and realities — will arise. Then, we will discover Heaven right here on Earth.

“I’m doing my best to remove my filters and remain with my eyes, ears, and mind open.” ~ Piero

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Let’s stay in touch. Like Peaceful Ways on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peacefulways

Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

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Take a look at my books at the Peaceful Ways online store

http://peacefulways.org/store/

Book Cover Image

– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

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Pay Attention Book Cover

– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

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Silent_Peace_Walk_Cover_for_Kindle

– “Silent Peace Walk”

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www.PieroFalci.com

www.SilentPeaceWalk.org

www.peacefulways.org

www.DAPAdiversity.com


 

 

Manifest the conditions

Dear God,

rays of sun in the sky

I hear you. I hear what you want from me. You want me to be who I am meant to be, and do what I was brought me here to do. You want me put to good use the talents and skills you have given me, be the best that I can be, and give my best contributions to the world. You want me to share the gifts that you have given to me, and bring more of your gifts to the world. I hear you. You want me to serve.

Your will be done!

You know who I am and what moves me. You know that my intentions are pure. Give me the humility to surrender, put myself at your service, and allow you to bring joy and serenity to this world through me. I ask that you manifest the conditions for me to do all that while living joyfully and fearlessly.

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Let’s stay in touch. Like Peaceful Ways on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peacefulways

Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

///

Buy my books at the Peaceful Ways online store

http://peacefulways.org/store/

Book Cover Image

– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

///

Pay Attention Book Cover

– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

///

Silent_Peace_Walk_Cover_for_Kindle

– “Silent Peace Walk”

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www.PieroFalci.com

www.SilentPeaceWalk.org

www.peacefulways.org

www.DAPAdiversity.com


 

 

 

Be who you are

“This crystal will remind you of who you are and what you came here to do.”

Who are you? What did you come here to do?

Each one of us is an unique package of talents and skills; no two are alike. No one can give what you can give, nor you can give what others can.

Figure out who you are. Remember what Howard Thurman said, “Don’t ask what the world needs. Ask what makes you come alive and go do it, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” Discover what you are passionate about, and follow your bliss.  Be who you really are, and do what you really love. Choose to do those things that give expression to your truest self.

Ask yourself the fundamental questions proposed by Wayne Muller: “Who am I? What do I love? How shall I live, knowing that I will die? What are my gifts to the family of the Earth?”  Wake up! Stop ‘sleepwalking through life,’ and find answers to these questions: “Why am I here? What is this thing we call life? Why do we make it so complicated? Why do we live in such fear? Why can’t we simply help and support one another to be the best that each one of us can be, so we all can give the best and unique contributions? Why can’t we all be friends, play together, and live in harmony?”

Be the best and help others be the best

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“Often we want to be somewhere other than where we are, or even to be someone other than who we are. We tend to compare ourselves constantly with others and wonder why we are not as rich, as intelligent, as simple, as generous, or as saintly as they are. Such comparisons make us feel guilty, ashamed, or jealous. It is very important to realize that our vocation is hidden in where we are and who we are. We are unique human beings, each with a call to realize in life what nobody else can, and to realize it in the concrete context of the here and now. We will never find our vocations by trying to figure out whether we are better or worse than others. We are good enough to do what we are called to do. Be yourself!” ~ Henri Nouwen

Thank you, Penelope Arango, for sending me this text of Henri Nouwen.

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“Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate. Our deepest fear is that we are powerful beyond measure. It is our light, not our darkness that most frightens us. We ask ourselves, Who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous, talented, fabulous? Actually, who are you not to be? You are a child of God. Your playing small does not serve the world. There is nothing enlightened about shrinking so that other people won’t feel insecure around you. We are all meant to shine, as children do. We were born to make manifest the glory of God that is within us. It’s not just in some of us; it’s in everyone. And as we let our own light shine, we unconsciously give other people permission to do the same. As we are liberated from our own fear, our presence automatically liberates others.” ~ Marianne Williamson

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Become-Who-We-Really-Are

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Let’s stay in touch. Like Peaceful Ways on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peacefulways

Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

///

Buy my books at the Peaceful Ways online store

http://peacefulways.org/store/

Book Cover Image

– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

///

Pay Attention Book Cover

– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

///

Silent_Peace_Walk_Cover_for_Kindle

– “Silent Peace Walk”

///

www.PieroFalci.com

www.SilentPeaceWalk.org

www.peacefulways.org

www.DAPAdiversity.com


 

What is Life?

It seems that we live in a society where the majority of people is suffering from an consumption addiction, a compulsion to acquire as many goods and have as many pleasurable experiences as possible. We are desperate to succeed, to be someone — to be number one — because we want power, position, possessions, prestige and privileges. It seems that we live with the need to prove that we are good and worthy of love.

Is this what life should be? What is life? What is the purpose of living? Is it to accumulate? Is it to compete and prove that we are better than others?

Many years ago I heard the saying, “He who dies with the most toys, wins.” And I also heard the comment, “He who died with the most toys, is dead, just like everyone else.” I’ve also heard, “He who wins the rat race is still a rat.”

Why do we live? Why are we alive? Why are we here? What are we here for?

Is it to learn to give love?
Is it to learn to accept love and allow ourselves to be loved?
Is it to have fun, laugh, and be happy?
Is it to learn to pay attention and to be awake, aware and alert?
Is it to learn to live consciously, appreciating the simple things?
Is it to develop gratitude and appreciation?
Is it to learn to be less selfish and more selfless?
Is it to help others?
Is it to grow in compassion, and to care and share?
Is it to learn to be kind, generous, patient, loving, giving and forgiving?
Is it to leave a contribution to humanity, to leave an honorable legacy?
Is it to repair what is broken and make things better?
Is it to promote justice, peace and unity?
Is it to awaken ourselves from our sleepwalking through life?
Is it to help awaken humanity?
Is it to bring Heaven to Earth, or to reveal the heaven that is here already?
Is it to teach?
Is it to learn how to live?
Or is it, simply, to learn how to prepare ourselves to die?

We need to constantly remember to ask ourselves, “Who am I? What do I love? How shall I live, knowing that I will die? What are my gifts to the family of the Earth?” as Wayne Muller beautifully stated. We need to remember to ponder on the following questions: “Why am I here? What am I am doing here? What do I want from life? What is this thing we call life and what does it demand from me? Why do we make it so complicated? Why do we live in such fear? Why can’t we simply get along, help and support one another to be the best that each one of us can be, so we all can live together in harmony, giving the best and unique contributions that we can give?”

what_is_life

John Lennon - Is Being Happy the Key to Life

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Live fully.

Love wastefully.

Listen attentively.

Learn permanently.

Laugh profusely.

Lead compassionately.

Leave an honorable legacy, one that will be a blessing to others, one that you can be proud of.

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Be awake.

Be alert.

Be aware.

Be alive.

Be mindful.

Be amazed.

Be grateful.

Be happy.

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Let’s stay in touch. Like Peaceful Ways on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peacefulways

Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

///

Buy my books at the Peaceful Ways online store

http://peacefulways.org/store/

Book Cover Image

– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

///

Pay Attention Book Cover

– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

///

Silent_Peace_Walk_Cover_for_Kindle

– “Silent Peace Walk”

///

www.PieroFalci.com

www.SilentPeaceWalk.org

www.peacefulways.org

www.DAPAdiversity.com


 

 

Mindfulness, Epiphany of Oneness, and Peace

For many years now, I have been working to improve the way people treat one another. Among other things, I facilitate Diversity and Sensitivity workshops whose aim is to reduce hostility and foster more harmonious learning and working environments. (if you want to know more about these workshops, check www.DAPAdiversity.com )

During those sessions we explore the harmful consequences of prejudice, discrimination, intolerance, harassment and bullying. We discuss how we, human beings, divide ourselves in us and them, and gather in all sorts of groups, clans, clubs and gangs. We analyze how those alliances augment power that, ultimately, is used against others. We look into our obsession with competition, on how we derive a sense of worth from winning. We reflect on our need to put others down in order to feel superior. We talk about the pain we inflict on each other, and how hurt people hurt people. Finally, I invite the participants to consider that we, all of us, carry prejudices, that we all isolate ourselves in our little tribes, that we all discriminate, act with some degree of insensitivity, and play and fight to win the Power Game. In the end, we all come to agree that prejudice is learned and can be unlearned, and that we can do a lot better in the ways we relate to one another.

After teaching, reflecting and writing about diversity and inclusion for many years, I am now convinced that the betterment we want in human relations cannot be achieved solely through education. Something more is needed, and that is that deep, honest, introspective investigation that leads to the inner knowing that we are all very similar, that we are all connected, that we all are parts of one same whole, and that treating others the way we want to be treated makes absolute and total sense.

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If I knew you and you knew me–
If both of us could clearly see,
And with an inner sight divine
The meaning of your heart and mine,
I’m sure that we would differ less
And clasp our hands in friendliness;
Our thoughts would pleasantly agree
If I knew you and you knew me.

If I knew you and you knew me,
As each one knows his own self, we
Could look each other in the face
And see therein a truer grace.
Life has so many hidden woes,
So many thorns for every rose;
The “why” of things our hearts would see,
If I knew you and you knew me.

~ Nixon Waterman, “To Know All Is To Forgive All”

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The transformation in human relations that we desire demands transformation at the personal level. It is through introspection that we come to realize our own discriminatory behavior. It is through inner work that we come to consciously unlearn the prejudices that we have unconsciously learned. It is through a journey within our own selves that we experience oneness, and start to see separation and exclusion — and the violence they bring about — as complete absurdities.

So, I invite you to take the time now — and many more times throughout your life — to go to that place of peace inside yourself and ask these four simple questions: “Who am I? What do I love? How shall I live, knowing that I will die? What are my gifts to the family of the Earth?” (*)

I encourage you to look deeply within your own self for answers to the following questions: “What am I am doing here? What is this thing we call life? Why do we make it so complicated? Why can’t we simply get along, help one another to be the best that we can be, and live together in harmony?”

The truth is that the betterment of human relations stems from the awareness of our oneness, an epiphany that comes from the practice of diligent inner-work, and from a gentle, mindful and contemplative way of living.

The realization that although education is important but not enough to bring about the change we want in the ways we treat one another is the reason why I have decided to promote the practice of moments of silence and stillness through mindfulness meditation in schools and workplaces.

I invite you to meditate and improve yourself in order to become a bringer of harmony to the groups you belong. I invite you to become a bringer of peace to the world.

Just do it!

Namaste ~ Piero

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(*) I encourage you to read the book How Then, Shall We Live? Four Simple Questions that Reveal the Beauty and Meaning of Our Lives by Wayne Muller.

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Let’s stay in touch. Like Peaceful Ways on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peacefulways

Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

///

Buy my books at the Peaceful Ways online store

http://peacefulways.org/store/

Book Cover Image

– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

///

Pay Attention Book Cover

– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

///

Silent_Peace_Walk_Cover_for_Kindle

– “Silent Peace Walk”

///

www.PieroFalci.com

www.SilentPeaceWalk.org

www.peacefulways.org

www.DAPAdiversity.com


 

 

 

An Overwhelming Sense of Oneness

Astronaut Edgar Mitchell, who was part of the Apollo 14 space crew that flew to the moon in 1971, and one of just 12 human beings who walked on the moon, died late Thursday, February 4, 2016, in West Palm Beach.

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Mitchell founded the Institute of Noetic Sciences, which sponsors research into the nature of consciousness, or studying the unexplained.

In his 1996 memoir, “The Way of the Explorer,” he described the experience on his return to Earth as life-changing. “What I experienced during that three-day trip home was nothing short of an overwhelming sense of universal connectedness. I actually felt what has been described as an ecstasy of unity,” he said.

Mitchell was 85.

I quoted Mitchell in my book “Pay Attention! Be Alert!” which was published in 2008. I saw him in the movie “In the Shadow of the Moon,” and his words had a deep effect on me. I thank him for being such a great explorer and inspirer, and I wish him a nice flight. Thank you, Ed.

Here’s from my book…

WE ARE DIVINE, WE ARE ONE

We are all human beings. Our common humanity precedes our nationality, ethnicity, ideology, or any other category. We could say that we are human before we are anything else, but this would be an incomplete statement because our divinity precedes even our humanity. We are divine before we are human. We are divine before we are anything else.

We break away from agony the moment we become conscious of our heavenly nature. This is what brings us ultimate tranquility: the conscience of our divinity. This is what brings us ultimate ecstasy: living out our divinity. This is what brings us ultimate happiness: making others happy. We must come to realize that our fate is linked with that of everyone throughout the Universe. We are all related, and the full realization of our divinity and oneness is one of the greatest insights we might come to, one that raises our consciousness to new heights and forever changes the way we see reality, and live our lives.

“The biggest joy was on the way home. In my cockpit window, every two minutes, [I could see] the Earth, the Moon, the Sun, and the whole 360 degree panorama of the heavens…, and that was a powerful, overwhelming experience… and suddenly I realized that the molecules of my body, the molecules of the spacecraft and the molecules in the bodies of my partners were prototyped and manufactured in some ancient generation stars… and that was an overwhelming sense of oneness, of connectedness… it wasn’t ‘them and us;’ it was, ‘That’s me! All of it! It’s one thing!’ It was accompanied by an ecstasy… “O, my God! Wow! Yes!”… An insight! An epiphany!” – Edgar Mitchell, Apollo 14 astronaut – Quote featured in 2008 documentary “In the Shadow of the Moon”, a film by David Sington, presented by THINKfilm

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If you would like to know more about Edgar Mitchell, read this article by Cassandra Vieten.

In Memoriam: Edgar Mitchell, ScD, PhD, by Cassandra Vieten, 5 February 2016

When he returned from space forty-five years ago, Apollo 14 Astronaut Dr. Edgar Mitchell committed his life to supporting a sustainable future. He worked tirelessly to understand and promote what he viewed as an absolutely necessary collective shift in consciousness. To those of us who knew him well, Edgar was an enthusiastic, loving, dedicated, courageous, generous, and brilliant man who inspired us to be bold in our exploration of the further reaches of human potential, to fearlessly challenge inadequate paradigms, and to carry his spirit of adventure into investigating our inner lives.

Most people know Edgar Mitchell best as an Apollo 14 astronaut and sixth person to walk on the moon. A US Navy Captain, MIT-trained aeronautics engineer, recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the NASA distinguished service award, and 2005 nominee for the Nobel Peace Prize among many other honors, Edgar Mitchell was a hero in the truest sense of the word.

What fewer people know is that Edgar’s spirit of exploration extended well beyond space travel to his lifelong dedication to increasing our scientific understanding of the nature of consciousness.

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Let’s stay in touch. Like Peaceful Ways on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peacefulways

Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

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Buy my books at the Peaceful Ways online store

http://peacefulways.org/store/

Book Cover Image

– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

///

Pay Attention Book Cover

– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

///

Silent_Peace_Walk_Cover_for_Kindle

– “Silent Peace Walk”

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www.PieroFalci.com

www.SilentPeaceWalk.org

www.peacefulways.org

www.DAPAdiversity.com


 

Sense of time, sense of order, sense of the future

Question – “What time is it?”

Answer  – “Now.”

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Now Clock

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O God, I Need You

I need Your sense of time. Always I have an underlying anxiety about things. Sometimes I am in a hurry to achieve my ends, and am completely without patience. It is hard for me to realize that some growth is slow, that all processes are not swift. I cannot always discriminate between what takes time to develop and what can be rushed, because my sense of time is dulled. I measure things in terms of happenings. O to understand the meaning of perspective, that I may do all things with a profound sense of leisure — of time.

I need Your sense of order. The confusion of the details of living is sometimes overwhelming. The little things keep getting in my way providing ready-made excuses for failure to do and be what I know I ought to do and be. Much time is spent on things that are not important while significant things are put into an insignificant place in my scheme of order. I must unscramble my affairs so that my life will become order. O God , I need Your sense of order.

I need Your sense of the future. Teach me to know that life is ever on the side of the future. Keep alive in me the forward look, the high hope, the onward surge. Let me not be frozen either by the past or the present. Grant me, O patient Father, Your sense of the future without which all life would sicken and die.

Amen

~ Howard Thurman (1951)

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Let’s stay in touch. Like Peaceful Ways on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/peacefulways

Learn about upcoming workshops and retreats at the Peaceful Ways website www.peacefulways.org

///

Buy my books at the Peaceful Ways online store

http://peacefulways.org/store/

Book Cover Image

– “Peaceful Ways – The Power of Making Your Wishes Come True”

///

Pay Attention Book Cover

– “Pay Attention! Be Alert! Discovering Your Route to Happiness”

///

Silent_Peace_Walk_Cover_for_Kindle

– “Silent Peace Walk”

///

www.PieroFalci.com

www.SilentPeaceWalk.org

www.peacefulways.org

www.DAPAdiversity.com