Unconditional Love For Sale

Photo by: Gerry Kahrmann, Vancouver Sun

Photo by: Gerry Kahrmann, Vancouver Sun

His name is Brice Royer, and earlier this year he posted an ad on Craigslist.

The ad quickly went viral with over 1 million viewers. Brice posted the ad because after he was diagnosed with stomach cancer in 2012, the reality of living with cancer set in and the pain became more severe. He found it more difficult to get up each day. The depression got so bad, he was actually thinking about suicide. It was too much to try to figure out how to successfully take his own life, so he told himself he would endure for just one more minute. And then another. Eventually, he chose to live.

Thinking he’d been handed a death sentence, Royer was inspired to take a vacation.He went to a cottage in North Vancouver for a month and while he was there, he researched the causes of serious illness, and discovered they ranged from toxins in the environment to stress and loneliness.

After much contemplation, he concluded that the root cause of his illness was a lack of love in our society. When he discovered that the healthiest people in the world live in places such as Okinawa, Japan and Ikaria, Greece, and that they have a lifestyle of caring for one another via what they call a gift economy, Royce wanted to experience this where he lives in Vancouver.

“They all have big families and small communities … they give freely and they receive freely. They are isolated from the market economy…and they make things themselves,” he says.

On March 12, 2015, he posted the following ad:

Hello, I am selling unconditional love for $0. Infinite square feet lot. Includes refreshing air, sunshine, the Earth, beautiful mountains and the ocean. A stunning ‘classic’ heritage made 4.5 billion years ago.

Address: Earth, Solar System, Milky Way.

Available now to serious buyers. Perfect for the first-time buyer and experienced investors feeling empty and trapped with stress and pressure to maximize Return on Investment because of family and stakeholders’ expectation.

HISTORY: I received it a long time ago when I was born. I received the gift of life from my parents, the sun, the water, the Earth, the air, a smile, a hug, a helping hand, without being asked anything in return. I didn’t earn any of them. They belong to the public domain, the commons, ‘Mother Earth’ or God, if you’re religious.

At some point, my ancestors were afraid and decided to own land that once belonged to everyone, sell services that were once freely given, and even own humans through debt. Since it was claimed or stolen by those who made the laws themselves with a series of ‘legitimate’ transfers, than any law that enforces private ownership is perpetuating a crime. Not all laws are morally just. Only recently, slavery was legal and women weren’t allowed to vote. Why pay for something that was stolen from you? They made a mistake. I’m sorry. Let’s start fresh with this new sale.

Although I am only one human and my time and resources are limited, my soul and the intention of love is eternal, and so is yours…and I would like us to share that experience.

PAYMENT: I don’t accept cheques or mortgage payments, only cash payments of $0. You are also welcome to re-sell it for $0. But I must warn you…it will multiply once you do.

Royce discovered that when he started giving unconditional love to strangers, gifts came back to help him, often in unexpected ways. Some of the projects he has been involved with include paying someone else’s rent for a year (even though he is currently living with his fiancée’s family) or paying a war veteran’s dentist to remove the dental amalgam fillings from her teeth that were making her sick so that she could better care for her autistic son.

Royce can only eat a few foods without getting severe headaches, rashes, heart palpitations and other symptoms. Carrots are one of those foods, and after he posted the ad, people all over the world started posting pictures of themselves with carrots to show their support. A Surrey farmer who grows food for the hungry offered Royer as many carrots as he needed before the two ever met in person.

When Francesca Murray, a homeless single mother, read the ad, she was inspired by his positive attitude and willingness to serve others. Via Facebook, she offered to come to Vancouver and help by cooking for him. Royer was so moved by her gesture, he set up a fundraiser site hoping to raise $100- to provide a two-month supply of vegetable deliveries for Murray and her young daughter. The goal was far exceeded, raising $2000- which allowed them to provide 250 meals to the women living in Francesca’s shelter.

The Power of Unconditional Love

The Power of Unconditional Love (Royer in the center, Francesca on the right).

Royer later learned that Murray’s time in the shelter ends in February 2016. She and her daughter will have to leave, whether they have somewhere to go or not. Royer and his friends are now looking for a way to find permanent housing for Murray and her daughter. They have started a new fundraising site with the goal of raising $25,000 in order to build Murray and her daughter a sustainable tiny home (for $20,000) and provide her with $5000- to cover her short-term living expenses until the house is ready. They want to reach this goal by December 25th. (In the few hours’ time it took me to write this article, the site has  raised almost $1000- dollars towards their goal.)

The greatest hope for our collective future is our humanity, that thing that stirs inside us that moves us to reach out to help another. When we share what we have, especially when that isn’t much, this Spirit multiplies exponentially.

This reminds me of the parable of the Widow’s Mite. For those of you who are not familiar with the story in Mark 12:42, Jesus and the disciples are present at the temple where the offerings were made. A poor widow put two small copper coins equal in value to a farthing in the basket while the wealthy were throwing in large amounts. Jesus comments on this to his disciples, and conveys the message that the widow’s gift was all she had, while the wealthy were giving offerings of no critical consequence to their lives despite the fact the amounts were considerably larger.

You are Loved...

                           You are Loved…

A homeless woman shares what she has with other homeless women. A seriously ill young man is moved to help others as part of his healing process. Both are enriched by their generosity. Spirit responds to our intention with incredible swiftness these days. There is something of powerful goodness building in our collective consciousness: an awareness of just how rich the Field of Plenty is, especially when we open our hearts without expectation of a return and give without hesitation.

I’m going to be a part of this one.

If you are moved to buy some unconditional love at $0., consider paying it forward here. One of Royer’s friends said it best: “By helping one person, we are helping all humanity.”

                                                                 A Generous Soul

You have not lived today until you have done something for something for someone who can never repay you. ~John Bunyan

All original material posted to this site is (c) 2015, Julia Marie. All rights reserved.



How Much Is Enough?

Peace for Paris. Peace for the World.

Peace for Paris. Peace for the World.

There was another attack on the soul of humanity. It struck in the heart of one of the most beautiful cities in the world: Paris.

This Eiffel Tower peace sign was drawn by French illustrator Jean Jullien. Around midnight, he posted this simple rendering of the Eiffel Tower inside a circle to his Twitter account with the words “Peace for Paris”. It is reminiscent of the Peace sign popular in the 60s. Seems collectively we still yearn for it. Perhaps someday we will experience it.

I was 12 when I visited Paris with my parents. The Champs Elysses, the Arc de Triumphe, Tour d’Eiffel, the River Seine, Versailles, the Louvre with all its treasures including the Mona Lisa, The Last Supper, and the Winged Victory. These sights and experiences are as vivid to me today (some 50 years later) as they were when I had them.

My prayers for all those who lost their lives on 11/13/15. My heart goes out to all the families left behind to mourn.

On Saturday morning, German pianist David Martello rode up on a bicycle towing a portable piano. He parked in an area near the Bataclan concert hall where just hours earlier, over 100 people died in a senseless act of mass murder calculated to engender fear and anger. David quietly began to play one of the most well-known anthems to peace written by John Lennon in the 1970s: Imagine. When David was done, he left the same way he came.

Imagine Peace

If there is a ray of hope here, it is in the natural tendency of humans to come together as one global family in the face of tragedy. Homeowners in Paris are opening their doors to those who may need a place to stay in the wake of the shockwave that hit their city, their home. People in the United States are offering their couches to those who may be stranded here due to the cancelled flights to Paris. We do care for one another. We have it in us to rise above the circumstances of the moment and demonstrate our compassionate side.

And from Auckland to the United States, the colors of the French flag are lighting some of the most famous landmarks in the world: The Sydney Opera House, The Auckland Museum, London Bridge, One World Trade Spire. The world was there for us when we lost our fellow Americans. The world is there for the people of Paris, the people of France, as they move through grieving their national tragedy. May we one day come together in co-operation, not mourning.

Be a light unto the world, and hurt it not. Seek to build, not destroy. Bring My people home.                                                                              ~Neale Donald Walsh, CWG, Vol 2

All original material posted here (c)2015, Julia Marie. All rights reserved.

Morning Coffee-12/17/12

Mirror, Mirror

Foam on a cappucino.

I have a reflective cup of coffee for you today. The post-tragedy pattern is following the predictable trajectory: “We must assure that this never happens again…” A story written by the mother of a troubled child tells the chilling truth about what we are dealing with here. She could have been, she is, Adam Lanza’s mother.

No, not his actual mother, but this woman’s experience is hauntingly similar. Yes, we mourn the loss in Newton. Yes, we will be there in spirit to provide support and comfort. But what about the elephant in the room that no one (except those who have a personal connection to the issue) seems to be talking about? No, not gun control. The elephant I’m talking about is mental illness and the lack of resources available to those with troubled mental states, or help for the people who love and care for them.

What we are facing today is traced back to changes in mental health policy that began in the 1960s. It is a complex issue and beyond the scope of this article, but I mention this here because we are our brother’s keeper. We are responsible for the well-being of our neighbors. If Adam had been in in-patient treatment, he would not have had the opportunity to commit the act in the first place.

We are asked to look in the mirror. After Ronald Reagan rescinded (August 31, 1981) the landmark Mental Health Systems Act signed into law in 1980 by Jimmy Carter, the number of homeless increased dramatically. It is estimated that 1/3 of the homeless population is mentally ill. It appears that there is a higher proportion of mentally ill in the prison population as well.

Are we addressing this challenge in a considered, compassionate way? We are still warehousing our mentally ill, only now they are caged in prisons if they are not on the street. Or, in the case of many young (mostly) males, their mothers are left to search for help when almost none is available. But we love our children, so we continue to try despite the sometimes terrible results. Adam Lanza needed help. Adam Lanza’s mother needed help. Where were we?

We cannot continue to ignore this problem. The issue is screaming for attention, and every time the focus is on the guns and not the person wielding the weapon, we are not doing much to prevent other, similar tragedies from happening.

To the mothers of all the Adam Lanzas out there, my heart goes out to you. Continue to be a champion for your charges, but do not sacrifice the well-being of your family or your health.

I pray that somehow, some day, some way, we face the image that is looking back at us from the mirror: pay attention, please. We need help. Help us.

(NOTE: I am not advocating more top-down system-wide sweeping changes. That obviously hasn’t worked. Will post more in the next article.)

All original material posted here is (c) 2012, Julie Marie. All rights reserved.

Photo credit: Wikipedia

Morning Coffee – Love, the Most Powerful Force in the Universe

Up At 4 AM Today

So what do you do when you’re awakened at 4:00 AM and can’t go back to sleep?  Used to be, I’d toss and turn.  Now I come and write.

English: Screenshot of The Beatles from the U....

Although I don’t have my cup of coffee handy (I’m still hoping sleep will come in a little while) it is morning.  When I wondered what I should write about, I immediately heard the Beatles singing in my head.

Love, love, love.

One of the most important things I learned early on in this journey came from what I can only describe as a vision.  I saw myself in another time, in another place, likely another dimension.  I had the feeling I had been in darkness for what had seemed like forever.  When I expanded my awareness out in the darkness I could feel nothing but myself.  And I was alone.

Just as I brought all of myself back together, something from behind me dug long claws into my right shoulder, shredding it.  My immediate response (I was in a semi-crouched position at the time) was to roll away from the attacker and attempt to draw my sword.

I struggled, because it was my sword arm that was damaged.  I did get the sword out and prepared to attack, but as I raised the sword above my head, I heard very clearly one word: “HOLD!”  (I figure if this was just my imagination, I would’ve heard the word “stop”.)

I slowly lowered my sword, pointed the tip at the ground, and rested my hands on the hilt.  My opponent didn’t move, this beast I was facing.

Cheshire Cat vanishing (detail)

As I looked up into the eyes of this creature, recognition dawned.  I was looking into the eyes of myself.  And my heart opened up. As I stood there radiating love, I noticed the beast began to fade.  And as it faded, I found myself becoming stronger.  Soon, only the eyes remained.  It was like the Cheshire cat in the story of Alice in Wonderland.

And just as the eyes winked out, I heard I heard very clearly in my head:  Love is the most powerful force in the Universe.

And suddenly, with that awareness, I was no longer in that place.

I was awake when I had this experience, so I cannot call it a dream.  I do understand that symbolically that beast would’ve represented all my fear, my shadow, the parts of me I judged, and the parts of me I battle.

The sensation of the strengthening of myself when I loved that beast into nonexistence felt real, and to me was a demonstration of the power of love.  Love in its purest form.  Love that is mixed with generous amounts of compassion.

This is what you get when it’s a morning without the coffee!

All original material posted to this site is (c) 2012, Julie Marie. All rights reserved.

Photo Credits: Wikipedia

It Really IS the Simple Things

New York City Cab Drivers…

New York City taxi cabs

New York City taxi cabs (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

For the first time here, I am sharing something I did not write.  I do not know the source of this article.  If it is copyright and cannot be used in this way, please notify me and I shall remove it at once.  It was such a touching, inspirational story, I just wanted to share it.  We never know how much our presence can mean to another in any given moment.

Continue reading

The Planet is Ascending and So Are You – Part IV

What You Can Do to Help Yourself Get Through this Shift

Planet example

Image via Wikipedia

     Finally.  Here it is. Part IV.  I did not realize when I started this one what a massive writing project it would be.  I read over what I’ve written, however, and can see how it needed to be put out in this manner.  I hope you can hang in there just a little longer.  This installment will be considerably shorter, as the complicated information was all in the other segments.  This segment will address the things I have learned through trial and error over the years that have been helpful to my body and my spirit as I have made my way through this process.  I hope there will be something in here that will assist you as well. Continue reading