Posted by: estheramy | August 3, 2012


“Start from where you are,” said “Ox Cohen” (Esther’s brother and my Spiritual Advisor) when I told him I was so overwhelmed with material for our blog (and hopefully, my forthcoming book about our mother/daughter journey to Abadiania) that I didn’t know where to begin.  Where I am right now is standing on the deck of my Casa, our Casa: my Casa, “Ox Cohen’s” Casa, and your dad’s Casa.  I’ve nicknamed your dad “The Bird” or lately, “Blackbird” because he often wears black (known to be the Master Color, the color of Alpha Dogs, the power-color) and because his moods are often “black.”

My lower back is aching, probably because since our return from Abadiania, I have taken only one walk, and not been to the Fitness Center to swim or do yoga.

Last night, Dad and I went to a lawn party hosted by one of Dad’s high school friends, “Billy.”  The party was the annual one that is similar to a high school reunion, except not everyone in Dad’s high school class is invited.  The wife of one of the guests (her name is Donna but she’s not the Donna we both know, Es) mentioned two “coincidences” involving her and I, though she didn’t refer to them as coincidences.  In the “Tao of Psychology” such “coincidences” are said to be more than coincidences; they are fated.  Donna is not my friend.  I see her only at “Billy’s” party once a year and occasionally at the restaurants “Charcoal Oven” or “Bonefish”.  She mentioned that one of her friends told her she’d bumped into me at a yoga class at the Fitness Center.  (Before we went to Abadiania.)  I remembered this morning, that her friend, who I’d met a long time ago at a fourth of July party held at Donna’s house, used to be the receptionist at Dr. Bloom’s (Ox’s former doctor) office.  “Small world” as the saying goes.

Meditation Garden

Since coming back from The Casa, Esther, my long held belief that there’s a reason for everything that happens to us in life, has been fortified by circumstance.  Like a lot of people (and as I’ve already mentioned) I don’t believe in random events.  I believe that our lives are a symphony—either a harmonious or discordant one– of people who are meant to help us become more giving, people who are in our lives to help us overcome obstacles (some of which are our fault, some not) and people who can help us develop confidence in ourselves and lessen our loneliness—loneliness L–part of the “human condition.”  You are too busy to be lonely; I remember your sharing that fact with me.

I could easily list ten lessons I’ve learned, since coming back from The Casa de Dom Inacio de Loyola, starting with the lesson that I need to observe Sabbath. Yesterday, I was observant by waiting until Sabbath was over to e mail Brooke (our tour guide in Abadiania) and I’m glad I did; I definitely needed the rest from “Mac” (my computer).  I’m positive that my day of rest was mandated by the powers that be, Esther, because I had such a troublesome night’s sleep on Friday night that it would have been impossible to work on our blog.  When I’m exhausted, I don’t trust myself to do a good job on whatever I’m doing—writing, playing the flute, or absorbing what I’m reading: (Currently, “Max Kolbe: The Saint of Auschwitcz).  My night’s sleep was not wrecked by visits from the lower entities, (disembodied spirits) but nevertheless, I woke up continuously throughout the night, so that “Yesterday”  (everything’s a songJ )  I was too tired to do anything but lie on a golden sheet in front of the house, making sure my knees were locked together, so that all the Orthodox Jewish men who were passing by our house with their babies in strollers wouldn’t be offended by my bare legs (Orthodox women wear long skirts) or tempted to give me a glance. (I’ve found that Orthodox men avert their eyes from mine as I’m walking.)  So, one lesson I’ve learned from our visits to The Garden of Saint Ignacious, is to observe a day of rest, as I’ve read in “Spiritual Cures” John-of-God himself, does.

If people reap what they sow, then it’s no wonder that “Billy’s” house is on such a magnificent piece of property.  His “Casa” is on several acres of land—a portion of his backyard reminded me of the rainforest in Brazil our tour group visited—Perinopolis, Vagafogo Park—full of leafy foliage; and brightened by a splendid garden with gorgeous purple asters and rose bushes. He has a loverly, above ground pool with a fountain in the middle and multi colored light floater lights.  But, without describing in more detail “what he has” what he gives is a marvelous party every year for “all the guys” and their wives.  He bought and prepared a virtual feast: lemony Greek potatoes in an a garlic sauce, similar to the bottled garlic sauce that we enjoyed on our salads and steamed vegetable at the Casa buffets, small chicken breasts (like the chunks of chicken served at the Casa) salad (I scooped some on my plate—it consisted of marinated celery, onions, tomatoes, and I thought, initially:  “Oh, no! Peppers!”  (I’d thought peppers were prohibited from our diets along with pork and alcohol, but I’ve read recently on Brooke’s webpage that we can eat sweet bell peppers; not black or red peppercorns, and not chili peppers.) But, I swear to G-d that when I examined my plate, no peppers! The powers that be ferreted them out for me!  I’d contributed yummy hummus purchased from a Middle Eastern restaurant on Kedzie Ave. (“Saalam”) that Lee, one of the cafegrrls listed on our writing blog (cafegrrls) had recommended.  Thanks, Lee.

Yesterday was a difficult, almost unsupportable day, but I definitely felt I was being guided by The Entities present at the Casa de Dom Inacio and elsewhere. The reason I suffered yesterday from so much malcontent is that I was fighting the demons of anxiety and depression due to my contentious marriage with your dad, “Blackbird.”  What saved me from The Abyss was my thinking of the movie, “Losso Nar”, particularly of the black and white scenes taking place in Hell, where the protagonist, Andre, is shown suffering for his sins (mental absentia from his wife and family) until he reviews his life and repents.  Then he reaps the reward of eternal life in the celestial spheres. My view is that the scenes in Hell were meant to represent our internal states when we are not doing what we are supposed to be doing, fulfilling our higher purpose.

Yesterday, I told “The Blackbird” that I couldn’t ask “Ox Cohen” to move a heavy lawn chair for me out on the deck  “because it’s Shabbos….”

“Shabbos, my ass!” he said.

“Please move the chair on the deck for me, Honey Buns,” I said sweetly, “so it’s facing the sun.

He was nasty as a biting fly, Esther, as he bourched (Yiddish for “complained”) about having to get up from the dining room table where he was reading the Tribune.

“What’s the point?” you sometimes say, when I complain about him, or about a situation I’m not willing to change, but persist in lamenting about, nevertheless.  And you’re right! What is the point?  I guess just venting, though disparaging others is never a fruitful practice.

I so believe in Karma.  Going back to the lawn party we attended (I’d like to; I wish “Billy” didn’t live so far away; I’d love to be his neighbor and visit his pool and blissful backyard garden.)  The benefit of communicating one’s disgruntled state of mind to another—family or friend—is that doing so is better for one’s health than letting a depressed state of mind linger and turn into immobilization, possibly weight gain, or other manifestations of ill health.

“Billy” is such a good, giving person that he’s been amply rewarded with vast acreage, and appreciative and loving friends and family.  He’s a teacher and has been devoted to helping kids attain their athletic goals for years.

I’ve been trying to figure out what “mitzvahs” (Good Deeds; Yiddish) I can do.  A “mitzvah” office has opened near our house, so I should go over there and ask what I can do to help.  Read to blind people?  Play my flute in a Senior Citizen’s Center in a Casa for the Elderly?

What else did I learn at the backyard party? To emulate other women who are “their own person” who are not afraid to parade their preferences, despite possible objections from their “hubbys.”  “J.S.” who you know, mentioned to me at poolside that her hubby “hates” her glasses—they’re maroon and thick and “hates” her purple toenail polish—but “I don’t care,” she said.  They’re my toes!!”  I complimented on her not caring that he doesn’t like the color green, but is “independent” and wears what she likes.

I’m so tempted to look up, right now, Esther, because I hear a cardinal and I so adore their crimson color (if they’re males!) and especially love to listen to their song.  But, I’m trying to stay focused on my writing, like you do.


What else did I learn?

That even though I’m not a “Spring Chicken” guys still think I’m sexy J

Several of Dad friends made inappropriate (your word; remember?) remarks to me, and I loved hearing them, not a surprise, right?  I have to admit, I’m such a narcissist.  L

I’d decided not to wear my old chartreuse knit tee with black bra straps hanging out; I opted for a black tee with nice crisscross straps on the shoulder instead—I didn’t want the guys to think I was “looking for action”.

“Har! Har! Har!” says Laughing Buddha, the Buddha who appreciates absurdity and who keeps me laughing, especially in the evenings, before I go to bed.  Just what the doctor, ordered, your Acupuncturist and Chinese Scholar, Dr. Rick.

My wind chimes are chiming.  I wish now Id bought some chimes in a positive key at The Casa, but “Oh Well…”


In tribute to Laughing Buddha, I’d like to mention a hilarious incident that occurred yesterday, the same day that “Blackbird” was so unpleasant to me.  The happening was delivered by Laughing Buddha to cheer me up.  In addition to the lawn chair episode, Dad told me on the way over to the party that he was never happier in his life than when I was away in Abadiania, and I told him that I felt exactly the same way, that I was never happier than when I was away in Brazil “With Esther.”  (Look at the photos of us!)


After our argument, I said, “I hope that you’re happy now that we’re in total accord; we both feel exactly the same way; we both wish we didn’t have to live in the same house.”

“Lovely” I can hear your hubby saying.

But today, “Tra lah lah la la” we’re going to see the new Woody Allen movie, “To Rome With Love,” either the 2:00 or the 5:00.

What happened was that someone e mailed me: “You’d be cutting off your nose to spite your face…”  I emailed back: “If I cut off my nose to spite my face, then I’ll get a fake nose like Clarabell or Bozo.”

And then, when we were driving to “Billy’s” party, I saw a white van that had lettering on it:  “Clowns for Hire.”  Not only that, Es, but the best part is that I’d also been thinking about someone we both know who is fascinated by young Afro American men, and on the side of the same van was a picture of a black man’s face in clown makeup.

Synchronicity!  “The Tao of Psychology.”

Wish I had some of the Casa water right now; I’m parched.

That’s hilarious!” I hope you were thinking about “The Magical Mystery Tour” van.



Crystal Bed







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