A Travellerspoint blog

Entries about god

I believe we all have a higher purpose...

Dear Brothers and Sisters,

I believe we all have a higher purpose in this life, one that stems from our Divine Origins, and it is greater than any career, any material thing, or anyone for that matter. Over the last few years, a veil has been lifted before my eyes, and I, along with my husband and son, have realized what that purpose is for our family. Over the last two years, we have traveled across the world in search of the Source of all Life, yet ended up finding it only within ourselves. And now, we feel “a fire in our bellies” to embody, to manifest, our dream into our reality.

This comes at a time when our world is increasingly being destroyed on many levels. We have been taught to believe that competition is our nature and we must struggle to survive. Because of this, our planet, our home, is being ravaged in the name of capitalism. All the while, humans are becoming more and more disconnected from each other, from Spirit, and from nature. Yet, there is hope. I know that things can change for the better. More people are waking up to what is happening on our planet. Humans are waking up to their true potential. We are realizing that we are all connected and we are all interdependent. When our planet suffers, so do we. When the animals suffer, so do we. And most of all, when we allow the suffering of other human beings, so do we. So what does this mean for me and for you? I have woken up and am ready to put into action what my purpose is. We are all connected, and I need your help.

To begin, I’d like to introduce myself and my family. My name is Jessica Parks. My husband is Tracy and my son is Elijah. About two years ago, we were your average American family. We had a nice house, two cars, and great jobs. But there was something missing. Our life lacked meaning. Then after the birth of our son, Elijah, in 2012, we came to the conclusion that we couldn’t raise him this way. Something had to change. We had to change. So we decided to sell or give away everything we owned down to one backpack and travel in search for the Source of Life. We traveled to Peru and back, and then across the entire United States. We weren’t quite sure what we were looking for; nothing seemed to satisfy us completely. Don’t get me wrong, we saw a lot of amazing people and communities changing the way they were living to be more sustainable and more in line with their values and with the Earth. And it inspired us, but it wasn’t until we were holed up in an apartment in the winter that we began to find what we were looking for. We begin to look within ourselves. And that’s when we discovered true happiness and the Source of Life! We learned that we could be happy anywhere, and we could create the reality that we dreamed of!

So with that, we are now living in northeast Missouri. This area of the country attracted us, as there are a number of sustainable intentional communities here, like the Possibility Alliance and Dancing Rabbit. My husband, Tracy, is a licensed counselor and currently providing therapy to individuals and families in Kirksville, MO, while I am staying at home with Elijah and growing an abundance of vegetables and fruits at our rental place. All the while we are patiently waiting for Source to provide us with the perfect piece of land and resources for us to begin creating our vision. My family and I are dedicated to creating a sustainable, modern homestead, a model of what life can be like, if we work together and if we work with the Creation all around us. Our vision is threefold. The first component is the homestead itself. We will create a modern homestead incorporating plants, animals, renewable energy, and the synergy of ancient wisdom with new permaculture concepts. We want to be a model of what is possible and how regular families can live more in line with their values and with all of Creation.

The second component is community outreach and education. To do this, we will offer organic, nutritious food to our local community with prices that are less than or equal to conventional food. This would be done with farm to table dinners at the homestead or with a stand or food truck at local markets. Our goal is not to make money; our goal is use good food as a way to invite our community to learn about sustainable farming, “beyond organic” food, and ethical business models.

The final and third component of our vision is a healing or retreat center. This is the most critical piece. Just as my husband and I began healing when we dug our hands in the Earth for the first time, we want others to experience that too. There will be no TV, no internet, and no distractions, just the quiet whisper of nature and Spirit. And a whole lot of farming and fun too. I believe that when we take away all the distractions and devices of mainstream life, most people are left with an emptiness that desires to be filled. That is where Spirit comes in and really fulfills that longing. Our healing center would offer individuals or families a stay on our homestead, so that they could experience what they really need. Maybe that includes milking a cow each day or digging in the dirt. Maybe it includes quiet meditation. Maybe it includes doing some therapy or tapping (EFT) to release past trauma. Maybe it just includes being with others and really connecting to one another over a meal. Whatever the case may be, I know that the experience will heal the individual because that’s what Spirit does. Spirit, God, Source, whatever you call it, it is pure love; it’s where we came from and where we can go back to. Pure love only knows how to restore and heal.

As I come to an end, I want to ask you if this vision resonates with your higher Self, your Spirit? My family and I have an abundance of love, creativity and passion to put this vision into action. And we are looking for someone who feels a similar calling to use their resources to move our world towards a better future. Maybe you can’t come live on the homestead with us, but rather have an abundance of financial resources that could help fund this vision. It takes all kinds and all people to bring our world into a new way of being. We are all connected and we all desperately need each other, if we want to see humanity flourish to its highest potential. So if this rings true to you, please connect with us. We are ready now, and we’d be more than happy to go into many more details about our vision and about ourselves. I am actually writing an entire book about it, detailing our physical journey and my spiritual journey that brought us to this vision. Whether it’s buying land, funding just one piece of the vision, or just offering advice, we are open to accepting any resources that you have in abundance and want to funnel towards creating a new, Spirit-filled, world.

In Gratitude,

Jessica, Tracy and Elijah Parks

Posted by jessp2386 12:51 Archived in USA Tagged food change god community faith farming search vision spirit missouri source homestead sustainable organic abundance connected Comments (0)

Whose Really in Control Here?

Becoming a Vessel for Spirit to Work Through Us

"Perfect obedience would be perfect happiness if only we had perfect confidence in the Power we were obeying.”
Hannah Whitall Smith

It’s Friday morning. One day after arriving in Portland, Oregon. We are sitting in a slightly dirty motel room. We are wondering what God has in store for us now. Knowing this is another test of faith, we still resist it slightly. We have no internet connection, no phone, and no way of knowing where to go or what to do; we are not in control. We can’t use our pop-up camper because of a city rule about RVs needing to be self-containing. We can’t find a tent campground; they’re either full or too far away. We are hungry too. It’s time for breakfast. So we start to drive. We have a very tiny map of Portland in our road atlas and try to decide which way to go, searching for a café…

Our journey up to now has brought us to this point, we know this. We know God is asking us to trust in Him to guide us to where we need to go. But man, it’s hard! All our programming tells us that we are in control of our lives. What are we doing?!? Why is it so hard to “let go” and let God lead us?

We’ll get back to this morning in just a minute. Let’s back up now, and bring you all up to speed, to how we got here in the first place. Last you heard, we were in Missouri. We had visited three different intentional communities, all very different from one another. We ultimately decided to keep journeying. We didn’t feel we were done yet. We really liked Sandhill Farm community in Missouri, and still may go back there to visit again, but felt called to check out one more community near Eugene, OR called Circle of Children. We’ll be headed there the beginning of August. Until then, we trucked it across the Great Plains and Rockies, visiting Yellowstone along the way, to make it to Spokane, Washington, where we would stay with Jessica’s family for a few weeks.

After a long and exhausting week traveling, we made it to Spokane. We were ready to take it easy for awhile, relax and let the grandparents smother Elijah with hugs and kisses. But alas! God had other plans for us, as we’ve become accustomed to now. Just as we thought we would relax in Florida when we came back from Peru, God decided we were not done learning and growing (and never will be). We won’t go into the details. Long story short, this whole journey up until now has been about ridding ourselves of our egos, attachments, and the illusion of control in our lives. We said in the beginning we were giving our lives up to follow God/Spirit wherever he may lead us, and He took us seriously.

If you’ve forgotten, we’ll sum it up nicely for you. First, we gave away or sold everything we owned, down to one backpack for the three of us. This got rid of our attachment to things, stuff, material possessions, plain and simple. Next, we left the country, our friends and family, the comforts of our “home” and everything familiar. That stripped us of many attachments, like TV, phones, the English language, our urban farm, our culture, etc. the list goes on as you can guess. Then, there were little lessons along the way, like when Jessica has a freak reaction to a sunburn that left her looking like Quasimodo for three days straight. If she had any attachment to how she looked, it was gone after that. Or one we didn’t mention yet, when Tracy got giardia for about two months, lost 20 pounds, and some days couldn’t get out of bed at all. If he was at all attached to a sense of strength, well-being, or “manliness,” it was definitely lost then. We’ve had little reminders from God that he is looking out for us and keeping us on our path. In Spokane, the message was the same. We needed to empty ourselves of our former identities, our egos. These are false senses of self and ultimately unfulfilling. What we needed was to get out of the way and let the Spirit fill us to make us whole again, truly whole, to be in touch with God. But all we felt at this point was empty.

Where was this Spirit that was supposed to fill us and where was God??

That’s when we really “let go” and cried out to God to fill us up with His love and His Spirit. We had little to nothing left. We couldn’t go any further trying to figure it out ourselves; we couldn’t doubt His plan for us anymore. We need God in our lives. And it was that simple. Of course, there are ups and downs to anything, good and bad days, but after that moment of ultimate surrender, life has been a little better every day. We know God is taking care of us, no matter what. That’s what Jesus was talking about when he said you must take up the cross and die each day. If ever a doubt, a negative thought, a worry comes into your mind, simply give it to God. And it really goes away!! We’re not kidding! For a long time, we were still holding onto this idea that we knew better, that we had to make a plan, but when you really give it all up to God, life is way easier!

Back to our story. We had just arrived in Portland and God was giving us the ultimate test of faith. What would we do in a situation where we forced to rely on God’s divine guidance? Would we panic? Would we stress out because we couldn’t look up a map, or Google a place to eat breakfast or stay the night? Would we just leave town because we could camp somewhere else instead? If you asked us a few months ago, the answer to those questions probably would have been, “Heck yes!” But no, we decided to stay relatively calm and let God literally guide us to where we needed to be.

So we drove. And ended up at a small café in NE Portland which (of course) didn’t have wifi. So we ate. And as we were eating and enjoying our breakfast, a little girl about Elijah’s age and her mother sat next to us. Naturally the toddlers brought us all into conversation. “How old is he?” “What’s her name?” You know, the usual.

Then silence.

Some believe that in every encounter we have with another human being there is a message for and from each individual, but it’s up to us to figure what those messages are.

Then just as they were getting ready to leave, the mother speaks up. “Do I know you from somewhere (to Jessica)? You look really familiar.”

Some also believe that when you recognize a stranger or get a sense that you know someone when you don’t, the Universe is trying to tell us something about the encounter. There is a message, a connection to be made, if we would just listen…

“No, we actually just got into town yesterday,” Jessica replies. It’s at this point that both of us knew that God was trying to work His magic through this conversation. After a little small talk about our current situation, the mother says with a slight hesitation, “I know this is a little weird, but we have an extra bedroom you could stay in.” And that was that.

So here we are now, staying with this wonderful little family. We ended up having so much in common with them, it can’t be a coincidence. This is Divine Intervention at its finest. We have children three weeks apart in age. We practice attachment parenting, like breastfeeding, cosleeping, etc. Okay so far, you could say that is just coincidence. We’re in Portland for one and lots of people do that here. But then it gets strange. They are also looking for intentional community, have very similar spiritual beliefs, want to live off the grid, and grow their own food! They actually just put a “meet up” request on meetup.com for fellow community seekers because they had recently been feeling so isolated from living and being with others.

So if that’s not proof that God exists and still works in our lives today, we don’t know what is. We’re convinced. And from now on, we’re giving every doubt, worry or problem over to God. We want to be vessels for God’s love and Spirit to work through us. He’s got a much better plan for our lives. Until next time!!

Elijah had his 1st Birthday
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Hot Springs and Yellowstone
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Spokane
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Posted by jessp2386 14:07 Archived in USA Tagged meditation family god yellowstone spirit spokane submission acceptance divine_intervention ego empty_vessel Comments (0)

Don't Waste Your Hate....

....Rather Gather and Create.

We wanted to start this entry off with some partial lyrics from the song, “Manifesto” by Nahko and Medicine for the People. I highly, highly recommend listening to this song.

You can do so at this link:Manifesto
If that link doesn't work, copy and paste this into your browser: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qsP2hPVOuZ8

“I see people stressin’ over space and possessions,
Out of fear and a need for visual aids of our abundance.
Give me examples or somethin’ tangible,
Something I can get my hands on and find real meaning.

Where is the medicine?
Well I’ve been searching,
And I suppose each will find their own kind.
Well everything’s at stake,
It makes it hard to concentrate.
And there are men who see a war and see a paycheck,
Such different programming,
To live so fearfully,
Terror this and terror that, terrible reality.
There is no medicine on the television,
So turn it off and turn yourself around.

And let’s just face it,
The world’s fucking racist.
Even the most peaceful of us gets caught in the trend.
To live cohesively is almost a fantasy,
And we oughtta know it starts with humbling our egos.
What is the medicine for cultural wounding?
Has its moments, has its melodies, has its time.

Well I was listenin’ to the outgoing seasons,
About climate change and some other reasons.
When the sky opened like I’ve been hopin’
And there came horses by the thousands,
And there was thunder on their tongues,
And lightening on their minds,
And they were singing this old melody from some other time.

They sang, Don’t waste your hate, rather gather and create.
Be of service, be a sensible person,
Use your words, and don’t be nervous.
You can do this, you’ve got purpose,
Find your medicine and use it
.”

So we’ve been on this journey to find our medicine, our source, our provider…God. He surrounds us, yet he is so hard to really grasp in today’s world. When we got back to the US we landed in Tampa, FL, and we were immediately overwhelmed with distracted and stressed out Americans rushing around the airport. After 24 hours of traveling, exhausted and hungry, it was a whirlwind to say the least. Luckily, we have an amazing baby, Elijah. He somehow didn’t even cry or complain the entire time, and stayed up way past his bedtime (usually 7 PM) to almost 1 AM when we boarded our last plane to the US from Lima.

Before we really get into the essence of all this, we want to say that this is in no way meant to offend anyone who is an American. We actually love Americans! We came back to America because we like Americans; however, don’t get that confused with America as a country or a whole though. We believe that this system created in America (and other Western nations) was purposefully set up to keep people distracted, brainwashed, separated, dumb-downed, and immature (spiritually, developmentally, etc). Luckily, humans are amazing and resilient, and despite so many very well thought out attempts to keep us sub-par, many of us have still managed to evolve and awaken to realize our full potential as human beings on this planet. Right now, we, as in Tracy and Jessica, are simply trying to explain our perceptions and experiences along this journey in hopes of opening up someone’s eyes and possibly awaken more Americans to what we believe is the real nature of the toxic system that we are living in. And of course, how we can rise above it and live peacefully and happily together.

So with all that said, it was in Tampa that we were bombarded with a reverse culture shock coming back into the US. This poisonous culture was even more apparent to us now that we had been out of it for three months. Nearly everyone we came into contact with was angry, depressed, stressed, or annoyed. Road rage rules the streets and everybody else is driving horribly (get the sarcasm?). It’s a culture based on money, fear, and control, and that’s the bottom line. It’s not about people or relationships or love. It’s definitely not about God. And if you don’t like the rules, you better shut up or get out. The saddest part of it all is that most people don’t even realize they’re in it, that they’re being duped and controlled, and that they can break free.

Long story short, it immediately starting pulling at our souls.

Originally, we thought we were going to have a happy-go-lucky mini vacation. Unfortunately that’s not in God’s plan for us. So off we went, in our newly bought minivan, to check out some off the grid intentional living communities, and hopefully find some like-minded folks living with nature and with God. Our first stop would be an eco-village just outside Gainesville, FL called Gaia Grove. They were also having an Intentional Communities Conference that weekend we were there, so we signed up for that too. We were pretty excited!

As we drove up, it looked promising. We were finally going to be staying in nature, as it was in a very rural forested area, and hopefully we’d be talking community very soon! We set up camp and met Mark and Joanna, the two people that run the place. Mark basically does most of the construction that’s on site, while Joanna owns the place. We were a little surprised to find out that no one else lived there, permanently or temporarily. As Joanna began to show us around the 92 acre property, we started to see what this place really was. There was no community. It was essentially just an empty piece of land that she owned and wanted people to invest their money in it. She wasn’t the least bit interested in actually forming community, or a conversation for that matter; she cut us off every time we tried to say something just so she could try and sell us the property or some business idea she had for it. It was pretty depressing. But we were hopeful for the conference and to just relax and be in nature.

We were wrong again. The conference was awful; Joanna had nothing planned at all. We did meet some really awesome people though, like Ken, Paul, and Rebecca, and learned a little firsthand how difficult it is to even have community and conversation for two days with differing opinions and ideas. In America, we haven’t been taught to live with one another. We’re taught the opposite, how to be an individual, how to take care of ourselves, but what about us as a whole? Where will this individualistic system lead us? It can’t go on forever because we actually do need each other; we can’t be self-sufficient on our own. So the million dollar question is: can Americans really have community and live successfully with one another? One couple at the conference did have hope for humanity, Paul and Rebecca. They were such a wonderful and loving couple living and farming near Tallahassee. If it weren’t for them, the first day of the conference would have been even worse. They brought forth a method for discussion called “circle way” which really helped the discussion progress that day. We hope we’ll be seeing them again soon as we make our way north!

So after the conference came to a dwindling end, and we had been rained on for four days in our leaky tent, we were feeling pretty down and lost. We hadn’t heard back from the next farm community we wanted to visit. We were feeling frustrated with this plan, wondering if we were ever going to make it to an actual functioning community. We felt very alone at the moment, without friends, family or community. We weren’t sure what we were doing wrong, but we didn’t feel connected with God at all. Just at that moment, Jessica had a random thought to go by this Hare Krishna temple we had seen on the way to Gaia Grove; we didn’t have anything else to do, so why not? Maybe there would be some wise spiritual leader willing to give us some insight into our plan.

Immediately upon arrival, we were greeted warmly by a man that informed us there was an impeding community feast, which happens every week at that time, and soon there would be a couple hundred people there. He then introduced us to a woman Caitanya, who seemed to have all the right answers for us at that moment, and could help us along our path, if only we would try chanting the name of the Lord, Krishna (God in Sanskrit), using their maha-mantra? We thought it couldn’t hurt to chant God’s name, so we’d give it a try. Meanwhile, about a hundred or more people showed up for the weekly feast; we were so happy to be around so many wonderful and welcoming people! It was exactly what we needed!

The Hare Krishnas believe that there are two basic principles for knowing and loving God and that’s to chant God’s name and to do service; their saying is "live simply, think highly." That's exactly what we've been trying to do; live simply with nature and others, and get closer to God. So we volunteered for the week to do service with them as they serve out lunch to nearly 1000 people each day, and we started chanting God’s name using the maha-mantra: Hare Krishna, Hare Krishna, Krishna Krishna, Hare Hare, Hare Rama Hare Rama, Rama Rama, Hare Hare. In Sanskrit, it basically means Oh Lord, please engage me in your service. If you do this, you will be able to reach Krishna Consciousness (or God Consciousness), which is the ultimate goal of Hare Krishna, the original state of our souls, to be at one with God.

So we never can predict where God will lead us next. We’re still not sure what our next step will be, but we’re at least for now, enjoying God’s plan for us (and next time, we’ll have a little more faith that God does know what he’s doing, we’re just a little impatient sometimes). We’re reminded of the song, “Manifesto,” again when they sing:

“Don’t waste your hate, rather gather and create.
Be of service, be a sensible person,
Use your words, and don’t be nervous.
You can do this, you’ve got purpose,
Find your medicine and use it.”

Who knows, maybe we have found our medicine with the Hare Krishnas? We’re at least going to use this opportunity to get closer to God and to be able to serve Him, as we discover the right path for us.

Here's some cute pictures of Elijah for now!
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Posted by jessp2386 21:59 Archived in USA Tagged god community hare_krishna faith spirituality find_your_medicine Comments (1)

Searching for the Source

Why We are Headed on this Journey

Whether you call that source God, Allah, Mother Nature, Gaia, the Divine Father and Mother, the great “I Am,” or maybe you don’t know what you believe in, there is something undeniably bigger than us, greater than us, yet within all of us. It connects us, it makes life worth living, and it makes us get up each morning and choose to live another day.

But unfortunately, that Source, that life force, has somehow escaped us in our modern lives. We work tirelessly day in and day out, buying the latest gadgets, and becoming ever further in debt to a system that has never given us anything of substance. We all say the most important things in our lives are our family and friends, yet somehow we continue to put up barriers, walls, and distractions that keep us from enjoying them fully. Things like Facebook keep us “connected” but disconnected. iPods, iPads, smart phones, the internet have “improved” our lives so much, many people have difficulty holding a real conversation anymore. We’ve become so scheduled and busy, multitasking five things at once, we don't have time to enjoy what life is really about!

So our small family has decided to do something different, and search the world for what life is really about, enjoying, living, experiencing, and remembering. We want to truly experience life to the fullest; we believe that we are capable of knowing and experiencing God on earth and we're set out to do just that. Here's a quote from Pierre Teilhard de Chardin that we really like:

"We are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human experience." large_IMG_1077.jpg

Posted by jessp2386 09:20 Archived in USA Tagged god journey why source Comments (0)

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