The Man (or Woman) Who Thinks They Can by Walter D. Wintle


If you think you are beaten, you are;boy with super powers
If you think you dare not, you don't;
If you'd like to win, but think you can't,
It's almost a cinch you won't.
If you think you'll lose, you're lost,
For out in the word we find
Success begins with a fellow's will,
It's all in the state of mind.

If you think you're outcasted, you are;
You've got to think high to rise.
You've got to be sure of yourself before
You can ever win a prize.
Life's battles don't always go
To the stronger or faster man;
But soon or late the man who wins
Is the man who thinks he can.

Opening to New Realities

whittles ear

This is a photo of Harold Whittles -- hearing for the very first time after a doctor placed an earpiece in his left ear.

What an experience this must have been for the beautiful boy. In one way frightening...in another mesmerizing. The comfort of his soundless world forever lost, yet a whole new world presented.

The process of self-discovery is just that -- both thrilling and terrifying. New experiences, feelings, and truths push us to our limits. No longer can we look at the world or ourselves the same way.

When this occurs, we must dig deep and find the courage to progress -- dare ourselves not to hold on to our pasts or former mindsets. New information and experiences offer the opportunity of a lifetime -- a true, heartfelt  journey.

May we look within and without our beings to notice our many blessings -- the people from which we draw strength and those we give it to -- beautiful skies and natural wonders -- animals that lick our noses -- the food we have to eat -- and the journeys yet to be taken.

With eyes wide open, we can be thankful and live with purpose...


And then the day came,
when the risk
to remain tight
in a bud
was more painful
than the risk
it took
to Blossom.

Anaïs Nin

- By Jen Engevik

My Encounter with a Kind Sage...

I once met a sage...

He had a twinkle in his eye,

and his heart was in his smile.

Looking for a rhyme and reason to the many pains, trials,

and frights

that were entangling me...

I asked, "Why is life not easier? Why can't it be better?"

He could tell I was pained and troubled.

A tear welled up in his eye, yet he smiled in the softest of ways...

"I'm sorry you hurt,

I'm sorry you feel pain,

but this is a part of existence on this planet."

I reached out my hand,,,he reached out his own. Our palms touched.

I began to weep.

He began to weep.

And then he pulled me into his arms.

"Child, child...you are strong.

More so than you know," he whispered.

"I'm not so sure," I replied.

He put has hands on my shoulders and pushed me softly an arm-length's away.

He stared into both of my eyes.

"Yes, you are strong. You must believe."

Sliding his right hand from my shoulder,

down my arm,

to my wrist,

he turned my palm up and directed all of his energies there...

right into the palm of my hand.

"The secret of happiness is to use this hand

in conjunction with your mind...

and to build something that will better the life of your brother

and your sister.

You know, everyone is your brother and your sister.

Don't forget this.

Miseries will come

miseries will go...

but if you keep steadily working

and with this hand



it will begin to make sense."

He turned my palm and placed it on my heart...

"Your most precious gift is your heart pumping in your chest.

It continues to give you life,

and if you dare to pay attention,

dare to let it lead you where you are meant to be,

you will find yourself living the most amazing of existences."

He continued...

"The heart knows what is right,


and noble.

It is those who with ignited heart

pour themselves into their work,

touch the lives of their neighbors,

and understand the power of creation

that find true freedom.

All too many know what it feels like to miss their calling

because of fear.

Everyone has the same chance...including you."

I was so very silent

stared at the ground

knowing that so many times I have failed.

The sage put his fingers under my chin

and he raised my eyes to look into his.

Fire blazed within his soft brown gaze.

"No need to be ashamed.

Just go and do what you're supposed to do.

Your dreams were planted for a reason.

Your heart beats to serve your purpose.

Let your heart guide your hands,

let it guide your mind,

and then your feet will naturally follow.

Don't be a slave to fear.

Open your arms and embrace what is to come,

and with kindness and humility

do your work."

He reach down once more,

took my hand,

gave it a warm squeeze,

and went on his way with purpose...

I've never seen him again,

yet a part of him blazes within me.

I see his eyes,

his heart filled smile.

I am now certain beyond belief that

Sometimes we all need a sage,

and sometimes we are the sage.

-By Jen Engevik

The Invitation by Oriah Mountain Dreamer

It doesn't interest me what you do for a living.

I want to know what you ache for
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart's longing.

It doesn't interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn't interest me what planets are squaring your moon...
I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened by life's betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn't interest me if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,

It doesn't interest me
to know where you live or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn't interest me who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn't interest me where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like the company you keep
in the empty moments.

- By Oriah Mountain Dreamer

Some Words from a Weary Soul by Jen Engevik

Today marks the end of the 37th week of this year. Once again I find myself a bit weary after working on several large projects for clients. Finally, I feel as though I can breathe a bit.

Yesterday was a wild one that found me writing the following in my notebook:

It is another day in the hood,

another day of experiencing,

feeling my heart beating,

stomach churning....

Today I started off by feeling so centered and sure...

As time rolled on I became stressed,

then really stressed,

then very stressed.

Wrapped up my work and then tried to catch a train to San Berdoo...

ended up quickly climbing the stairs of the metrobridge-

Once at the top,

across the bridge I sprinted in my heels,

almost tossed my cookies (boy I felt out of shape)...

was running so fast,

but before I even had a chance to get down

the other side of the platform...

the damn train took off yonder -

I wanted to cry...

But now I'm on a train to the City of Angels

Skipping along the tracks and writing too..


For whatever it's worth, sometimes I feel as though life is a never ending challenge...just willing us to remain centered and sure. It's not easy. It's not always fun.

After my train landed in LA, I was walking toward the street when I crossed paths with an African man with a turban on  his head & huge smile on his face. We both said "hi," and I couldn't help but ask, "What makes you so happy today?" His answer...

"I'm like this everyday...I just have this strong sense that everything is going to work out just fine. I look at it like this...sometimes good things just come along when you least expect them."

By the time I got to the street, my ride swooped me up and we were off to the Dodger game. A block past Union Station, there was a sign wrapped around a post that read "BOLD"...and something told me it's all going to be Ok...

- Jen Engevik

Project BE Bold

If I Could Share a Thing or Two with the World

If I could share a thing or two to the world I’d share 
That a smile is worth more than gold
A soul should be treated with utmost care
We should love one another as though we are each precious treasures
Life can be lived in the present
(That’s where true happiness is found)
The heart is fragile
Our barometer for what is
Good, right and true.

If I could stand on the top of a mountain and shout a message out to the world,
I would invite everyone to live
Out their dreams
To treat each moment with respect
To stop pretending to be who they aren’t
To invest in positive thought
And courage
And hope.

I’d suggest that we stop focusing on drama
And start focusing on possibility
To pour ourselves into projects
A better world
I’d encourage others to leave the places
They visit in better condition than
When they first arrived.
(picking up a bit of litter may be a start,
Rather than walking over it and pretending it
isn’t there.)
To invest in better behavior
Rather than investing in the idea
that we are a doomed, sinful race.
Taking responsibility should be our
goal – rather than blaming it on
the devil or some other “sinner.”
Don’t you think if there is a God,
He'd would want for his children
to transform the world rather than
wait by aimlessly for a magical solution?

If there were religious groups standing by,
I’d want to remind them that
above all things LOVE is the most
important virtue
And gift that they can give the world
(Judgment isn’t going help their cause…
it will alienate those who need their message most)

If there are doubters out there –
Those who think there is nothing to live for
That there is no hope…
I’d like to invite them to
look around and see the simple beauties
that the world has to offer –
Blue skies
And so much more…
The way to move away from a funk
Is to dive in
and dare to look beyond one's self
know that you aren’t alone.
There may even be someone out there
Hurting more than you.
You can make a difference in his or her life
and then you will have sublime purpose.

Happiness comes from our ability
To move beyond ourselves
And into a pursuit for some sort of

If I could teach the world a thing or two,
I’d  share that
living from the soul is most important -
from the soul there springs,
Everything that we
will ever need.
No matter how much we think
Things and attainment will bring us joy
without tapping into the soul
everything is meaningless,
And false.
Within the soul resides
And hope.

To tap in into its deep well
Find moments of silence
and contemplate
on the truth it reveals.
Then live from it…
Energy will fill your bones
as you begin to live with

By Jen Engevik

Dharma by Billy Collins

The way the dog trots out the front door
every morning
without a hat or an umbrella
without money
or the keys to her doghouse
never fails to fill the saucers of my heart
with milky admiration.

Who provides a finer example
of a life without encumbrance--
Thoreau in his curtainless hut
with a single plate, a single spoon?
Gandhi with his staff and his holy diapers?

Off she goes into the material world
with nothing but her brown coat
and her modest blue collar.
following only her wet nose,
the twin portals of her steady breathing,
followed only by the plume of her tail.

If only she did not shove the cat aside
every morning
and eat all of his food
what a model of self-containment
she would be.
what a paragon of earthly detachment.
If only she were not so eager
for a rub behind the ears,
so acrobatic in her welcomes,
if only I were not her god.

- By Billy Collins