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    December 2008
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Prayers to Light Your Way – for BJ

empire-state-chanukahThe Empire State Building, lit up for Chanukah

in NYC’s first snow storm of the year, December 19, 2008

Dear Readers,

Chanukah, the festival of lights, more than any Jewish holiday I know of, celebrates miracles. In ancient Judaism, circa 168 BC, the second temple was destroyed in a war between the Jews and the Syrian-Hellenists, when they forced Jews to assimilate. Although the sacred items of the temple’s altar were decimated, enough oil was recovered to light the flame of remembrance for one night. But instead of lasting for just one night, the flame burned for eight days and eight nights. It was called a miracle and Jews made a holiday, and with that, of course, they/we eat.

In remembrance of this time in history — when what seemed like the darkest hour, light emerged, propagated by a small flame. Jews celebrate by lighting candles and partaking of delicacies fried in oil: latkes in the US and doughnuts in Israel. The Jewish calendar is lunar, thus different each year, and this year, the winter solstice coincided with the first night of Chanukah. On the shortest day and night of the year, where darkness prevails, the light of hope was kindled. And now, the year has turned and daylight will continue to increase. In that same vein, may our ability to produce good in the world, in the “square inch field” and in the grand scheme of things also increase.

In this spirit, I ask that you to turn your attention and prayers to one of our own PUMA family members who’s in need. I’ve been sending prayers and thoughts toward BettyJean Kling, her daughters Louisa and Denise, and her whole family since hearing of their horrible family tragedy.

Last week, Louisa was violently assaulted by her sister Denise’s estranged husband. Riverdaughter stickied her poignant vigil post that described the situation: Louisa, who had been caring for Denise who is in an advanced stage of cancer, is now in the hospital fighting for her own life and brain function. If you want to read more of the story, you can find it here. And, last Friday night, December 19, Sheri Tag broadcast a special interview with BettyJean on Puma United Radio that you can listen to here. The show had me reeling, shaking my head in disbelief. It’s hard to believe that such assaults occur in our world, but indeed, they are all too common.

BettyJean welcomes all prayers. She asks that “no infection take hold, and may the left brain take over for the right with some time, God willing.” The latest update gives us more hope: on Monday night Louisa squeezed BettyJean’s finger and the doctors are now concerned with brain function instead of removal from life support.

Great Spirit, please provide strength and healing to Louisa, Denise, BettyJean, and her entire family. Amen.

Please take this time to click on and play the Moody Blues track below, listen to the words with your eyes closed, let the music inspire you, and try to contact Louisa, and anyone else in your circle that you’d like to send energy to or connect with.

Thank you for all you do! With love, and may the lights of Chanukah and Christmas shine upon you all, and brighten your nights, LBNYC

I Know You’re Out There Somewhere

[. . .] The words that I remember
From my childhood still are true
That there’s none so blind
As those who will not see
And to those who lack the courage
And say it’s dangerous to try
Well they just don’t know
That love eternal will not be denied

I know you’re out there somewhere

Somewhere, somewhere
I know you’re out there somewhere
Somewhere you can hear my voice
I know I’ll find you somehow
Somehow, somehow
I know I’ll find you somehow
And somehow I’ll return again to you

Yes I know it’s going to happen
I can feel you getting near
And soon we’ll be returning
To the fountain of our youth
And if you wake up wondering
In the darkness I’ll be there
My arms will close around you
And protect you with the truth

I know you’re out there somewhere
Somewhere, somewhere
I know you’re out there somewhere
Somewhere you can hear my voice
I know I’ll find you somehow
Somehow, somehow
I know I’ll find you somehow
And somehow I’ll return again to you

[cross-posted from LadyBoomerNYC]

24 Responses

  1. Thanks for a beautiful post, LB! Happy Chanukkah to you and yours!

  2. Thank you so much, MB! Same to you! And may all the travelers be safely guided along their way!

  3. Time to get going to and finish cleaning up for my hubby!

  4. Well, have fun. I don’t think there are many people around, but the post will be around for later. Tomorrow, I’m getting together w/ all three of my “kids” and their bff’s for a Christmakah Party in DUMBO/Brooklyn. I can’t wait! xo

  5. I’m off to celebrate Christmas eve with fcriends and family at a wonderful Irish restaurant. We started off with 8 and are now up to 20, with more arriving each year. Anyone with no place to spend Christmas eve is welcome, either in person or in spirit.

  6. Ah, wonderful chatblu! A growing gathering. I’m going to light candles at my family friends’ tonight but would love to join you in spirit, if I may. What city are you in, BTW?

  7. may God grant the family the strengh to deal with this terrible thing and i pray that all will be well with them.



  8. Amen, helenk.

  9. LadyB: Hollywood FL.

  10. chatblu: Ah, thanks. I was just in Boynton Beach over Thanksgiving, visiting my mom. It was SOOO nice, even though the temp only reached mid-70s, to run on the beach, get some color on my face, see palm trees, and collect shells mid-winter.

  11. I cannot believe you used “I Know You’re Out There Somehere!”

    That song figures very prominently in a little something I’m working on.

  12. Just wanted to drop by and say thanks to all the posters at the Confluence for all the insight and first-class commentary. With best wished for the Klings and all families who are suffering. My prayers and gratitude during this holiday season.

  13. LBNYC- beautiful sentiments and sincere words to bring us all together to support BJ’s family- I’ve never met her but feel close and pray daily for all of them, that they may get through this awful ordeal and that someday women will not fear for their lives or their sanity from those who “love” them.

  14. Jonelle, AniEm, thank you for your beautiful comments.

    Brad–Ah, must be “telepathic radio.” Do you mean your movie or . . .?

    It’s weird: I’d been re-playing the song over the last couple of months on my iphone. (I’m kind of compulsive that way and will replay a song hundreds of times, then drop it.) Then when this tragedy happened, it was the pull of connecting with people on other planes that this song evokes, and trying to draw Louisa back.

  15. Hey all, gotta go run errands. Will check in when I return in about 1/2 hour or so. May the weather gods shine upon you and let you get to where you’re going safely. xo LB

  16. Chag Sameach LB, and thank you for your beautiful post. Here’s to a prayer for Louisa, the end of violence, and the kindling of the light of compassion.

  17. Ah, thank you, Shtuey. And to you, too. And beautifully said about “kindling the light of compassion.” I wanted to write something a gazillion times to you when you posted your in-depth articles about the Lakota Sioux. A very close friend of mine, Gary Rhine, who passed away tragically a couple of years ago, plus an org, Plenty, have done a lot of great work with and on Pine Ridge to further their rights, health, farming, freedoms, independence. Thanks for you compassionate work on their behalf. More later. LB

  18. Music is like that – it connects us. Very interesting that we both had that song pop into our heads. Yes, I use it in the film, to kick in the third act. It’s very effective, almost makes you want to jump out of your seat.

    The Betty Jean situation is so bizarre. I posted a brief bit with her from the film on youtube and got a few absolutely loathsome comments. You’d think that folks could just let someone along in their grief.

  19. Sorry, my last post was for Lady Boomer.

  20. LadyB: Temp. pretty much 70’s and 80’s here this week also. Welcome to winter, SoFL style.

  21. It is so difficult to deal with a family emergency at a time like this; I cannot imagine how this will taint Christmas memories for BJ and her family forever.

    Best wishes to all of you this evening. I’m getting ready for a Christmas Eve service of lovely music and readings at my church.

  22. Thank You all- You are my blessed Angels tonight and every night- Merry Christmas – Happy Chanuka- Kawnsa- I love you all for this- Thank you . I only come home for 4 -6 hours to care for Denise and so little time to check the web- there is so much love out here for my girls – I want you all to know I feel it – we feel it – we thank you!
    Peace be with you tonight and forever- for your kindness and love.

  23. BJ – hang in there and give your daughters a kiss from us. You’re in our thoughts.

  24. Good to hear from you, BettyJean! Keep the faith, we’re with you all. Over and out, and try and catch the Mormon Tab Choir on the telie — the angels are singing tonite, and are an amazing inspiration. xo, LB

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