Knights Of Awakening Live show 03/30/2016: Afterthoughts.

KOA RadioSo today we had our first Live broadcast in about 2 years.  I have to admit a couple of things right off the bat;  1. I forgot how nerve racking it can be, to go Live on the air (no matter how many times you have done it before).  2. After listening to the show a few times during the editing process for the YouTube channel, just how rusty I am after all that time of being away from it!  3.  Most importantly, man I forgot just how much FUN it is!  The only thing I wish I could change in the whole process, is that I wish speaking on the air was as easy as writing.  What I mean is, you don’t see a lot of “ummm” when you are reading stuff.  I may have to go back to the game where I have people count the number of times I say “ummmm” on the air.

Even though I was really rusty, and had a rough start to the show, I really did have a great time today.  It took me back to a time where it was just me and my Compatriot David, taking on the whole entire universe with nothing more than fire in our bellies and a mic in our hands.  That is one thing I will be always grateful for; Some of the best moments in my life, were captured to be enjoyed for eternity.

In today’s show, I spoke with Derek Thompson of Ashla Knights, Alethea “Ally” Thompson host of the Let’s Regroup page and series, and former Host and Friend Charles “Lightning Stike” McBride from Papahood Sorcery.  I also spent some time, talking about the series that I am hosting, “The Road to Recovery and New Beginnings”.   Speaking of the interview with Master Derek Thompson of Ashla Knights, I will be posting the bonus audio of the interview in a video over at our YouTube channel.

 

The Road to Recovery and New Beginnings: Series break

Road to recovery break

As we come to a break in the series, capping off with Episode 4: Compassion and Empathy, I wanted to take a few minutes to look back at what we covered thus far.

In Episode 1: An Introduction, I shared a incident with you that created a situation in where I was forced to contemplate where I was on my personal journey and the lessons I had to face.

In Episode 2: Gratitude-Fixtures in the Background, I shared how I realized how the moments and little things in my life and been taken for granted in a way.  I realized that I was missing out because I didn’t take time to be grateful.

In Episode 3: Mindfulness-Choose to Participate, taking the lessons learned from not being in the moment, we shared a few ways to develop being in the moment.  Being in the moment requires active participation and attention.

In Episode 4: Compassion and Empathy-You feel me?, we talked about achieving a Compassionate state of Being.  Using Empathy in a way that transforms not only the way we see and interact with the world, but the effectiveness of how we can help others.

I want to be clear, this is NOT the end of this series!  I am simply at a point where the series has caught up with my healing thus far.  As the healing continues, and I begin physical therapy, the series will pick back up until completion.  In the meantime, the Knights Of Awakening will still be offering content as planned.  We will have our first LIVE show next week and we hope you will join us then!

Take care Knights, and until next time……

Awaken the Knight Within!

 

 

The Man That Cried for Their Amnesty

As ISIS builds their terrorism resume and the world reacts in anger, I’m reminded of Christ’s continuing ministry upon the cross.  While the crowd watched Jesus upon the cross they felt he was talking to God as though he was making his case to get into heaven.  But he wasn’t.  In Matthew 27 (and Mark 17)

45 (34) Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? (My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?)

Luke 23:

34″Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.
and again, when a thief asked that he be remembered, Christ responded
 
43 “ Verily I say unto thee, To day shalt thou be with me in paradise.”
and finally
46 “Father, into thy hands I commend my spirit.” ; John 19:30 “It is finished”
John 19:
26-27 “Woman, behold thy son! Brother behold thy Mother!
 
Let’s start at the beginning.  It’s such an odd statement, isn’t it?  But this is the quote of the beginning of a Psalm (22 to be exact).  The Psalm is not just a teaching though, it is the final thoughts of Christ upon the Cross.  Seriously, look at the Psalm, see any parallels to his crucifixion?  It should, because it’s a prophecy of what was taking place.  Instead of reciting the whole of the Psalm, Christ points it out for others to read and stare in awe that the prophecy had been fulfilled, and it brings us to a knowledge of Christ’s final view of his role.  To Christ, his role was nothing- but God’s role was ever present in his life.  It’s a profound understanding of just where we also need to put ourselves in order to allow God’s glory into the world.
 
But it’s the other parts of his speech that intrigue me, especially in the growing insanity of the Middle East that is making it’s way to other nations- Christ spoke of truly only two things: Others and God.  Psalm 22 was regarding God’s glory.  In another he glorified God demonstrating that the crucifixion was not at the control of those which put him upon the Cross, but God’s.  Every other thing he said was for the plight of others.
 
He looked out for his mother.  Gave her someone that would comfort her, and his brother would have someone that he could take care of.  Which was quite important for their grieving process.  In another verse he forgives and grants salvation to a thief.  
 
And the truly inspiring quote is one that a few weeks ago I found myself asking the following in regards to: In that final moment, when a Christian is praying to God and ISIS murders them- are they asking God of themselves?  Or are they asking God to forgive their transgressor?
 
“Father, forgive them; for they know not what they do.” 
 
Christ’s words are at the heart of the discussion on prayer in the face of an adversary.  Surrounded by those which sought to have him killed, Christ looked upon them all, and turned to God to plead with Him that He take mercy upon them.  That Christ as a sacrifice would be the only thing that was needed for them to have an opportunity to find God again without the binding of meticulous servitude which had become nothing more than monotonous ritual.  In just three days, Christ would be able to bring a full understanding of his message on the Cross that day- but we don’t have that in a similar situation.  Our lives are not meant to return here unless God deems the necessity for a miracle of restoring our lives before the non-believers.
 
There is just one opporunity when a Christian is facing certain death at the hands of a murderer.  If we take the lesson of Christ on the Cross, we see that the ultimate compassion of his entire life were his final prayers, when he cried for their amnesty.

The Road to Recovery and New Beginnings. Part 4: Compassion and Empathy-You feel me?

 

A Knights Of Awakening radio and blog series

Hosted by Justin Bane

Listen to the show here!

It’s no coincidence that I choose Compassion to be the 4th installment in the series. I wrote a couple of years ago, that Compassion is not just a “feeling” we have towards others. If practiced and cultivated, it goes far beyond just an emotional response to an outside influence. If understood completely, Compassion becomes a state of Being. You may find a few instances where I borrow from that original piece, but for me it is still relevant to this day and relevant to this series.

Compassion such a powerful word for some. For others, just a fancy buzz word that we like to throw around to show others how much we know, how much we “care” for others, to show how much we “belong” to a certain philosophy or group. Sure most people would argue that everyone knows what compassion is, but to those who really know what the word means, do we really know what it is? Do we take Compassion one step further from our minds and put it into action wisely? Or is it yet another just another fancy buzz word on the parchment of some one’s philosophy? Understanding that Compassion is not something that can be applied like a blanket to all situations, Compassion is a very difficult state to be in all of the time.

Many of you who have been around for awhile can relate to what I am talking about. We see people opening up fly by night “academies” and teaching and preaching terms like “Compassion”, but it often times feels like they are just talking about it because they think it sounds cool or they are just trying to fit in to the latest and greatest path or philosophy. I don’t want you to think that I am hating on these folks, I am pointing this out because these are the people that we need to take under our wings and help them understand that Compassion, when cultivated and forged, can be a powerful weapon in the arsenal.

For most people, I would argue that they fit into the Websters dictionary (dictionary.com) definition of Compassion; “A feeling of deep sympathy and sorrow for another who is stricken by misfortune, accompanied by a strong desire to alleviate the suffering.” This is the normal emotional response that I think most people have when they encounter a situation where this applies.

As an emotional response, Compassion can not be used as a bandage for all of the horrible things we may encounter in our daily lives. There are circumstances where this type of Compassion is helpful and useful, but when we use this type of Compassion as a blanket for all of the worlds problems, we do so at the risk of making things worse for others, and putting ourselves at risk as well. When we transcend beyond the emotional response, Compassion becomes a state of Being rather than just a knee jerk reaction to a situation.

I would like to take the word and meaning of Compassion one step further. For a Knight, the word Compassion does not just mean to help others through the toughest times in their lives, the word Compassion means for us, an undying Love and Respect for others. To be able to treat others in the highest regard, not for any other reason other than our Compassion for them, for all things. Understanding that to have Compassion, is to have the highest of Respect for Life. Compassion is a powerful weapon and tool, and very good attitude to have when dealing with the world and all of those who share it with us. It does not mean that you have to give your last dollar away and it certainly does not mean that we have to all join the peace Corps.

“So what you are saying is that we should only feel Compassion towards others and not act on that feeling?” No, that is not what I am saying. What I am saying is this, Compassion as an emotional response, cannot be applied to every situation that we will encounter in our lives. Matter of fact, if you do blindly apply Compassion as an emotional response to every situation in your life, you will find your self suffering at some point and also finding yourself in a position to where you are now no longer able to help anyone. What we should strive for and develop is a Compassionate state of Being. That state of Being where we understand and respect others and the things that bring us together, the common threads that hold us all together and not so much on what makes us different from each other.

In the Video/Spoken portion of this topic, I will share a few ways that we can develop a deeper understanding of Compassion. We will talk about how to work towards achieving a Compassionate state of Being. We will discuss how Empathy fits into the equation of transcending into a Compassionate state of Being.

Thanks for reading and listening to the Spoken portion of this series! I look forward to your personal stories and comments on the topic. Stay frosty Knights, until next time………

 

Awaken the Knight Within!

The Road to Recovery and New Beginnings. Part 3: Mindfulness- Choose to participate.

The Road to Recovery and New Beginnings. Part 3: Mindfulness- Choose to participate.

A Knights Of Awakening Radio and Blog series

Hosted by Justin Bane

Welcome to part 3 of this new series! In the last episode I shared with you how in the blink of an eye, everything changed for me. How lessons come at us from all angles and all places, sometimes hard and fast. I hope you enjoyed it and I look forward to continuing with this second part with you!

As we talked about in part 2, being in a state of Gratitude requires a few parts to make it work. Today we are going to talk about one of those parts…being Mindful and being present in the moments in our lives. Life is a sum total of moments, whether we are aware of the details or not. Like most people, I fall into the numbers trap most of the time, focusing more on the tick marks rather than the details. Moments in our lives are governed by numbers on a clock or dates on a calendar. I’m not saying that it is wrong or bad, because these numbers are important to sync us together with each other and with the important stuff in our lives that we need to do and places we need to be.

I talked about how being grateful requires us to be present within the moments, being mindful to the details and people who we are sharing those moments with. I know that we become so busy day to day, paying bills, working, taking care of family and friends, fulfilling our commitments, and so on. We put so much on our plates that it becomes very difficult to devote quality time to the individual moments in our lives. It gets to a point where, like I said in part 2 of this series, that the people start to become fixtures and everything else starts to become background noise. Most times, we are jarred into the moment by both good and bad things that happen in those moments. We snap out of the trance of everyday life most times by outside factors rather than internal influences.

Many faiths, philosophies, and life paths teach, promote and practice mindfulness. Usually it is practiced through different forms of meditation and prayer. There are also practical exercises that can be found through different disciplines, authors, and all over the internet. Each of us have a preferred methods, so the point of this article is not to tell you what methods are better. Use and practice what works for you. I will share with you a few of my favorite exercises that I have and do practice in my life. Before we get to that, I just want to point out that no matter how much we train and practice in our lives, there is always room for improvement and betterment. Even though I practice and train, I still fell victim to complacency and stagnation in more ways than I can count.

First off, I need to mention that it is imperative that we all need to take time for ourselves from time to time. We get so busy in our lives doing stuff for others that we forget and even neglect ourselves. If we neglect ourselves for too long, we then find ourselves being of no use to anyone else. Mindfulness is a personal and internal process that requires our focus and attention. It requires for us to go to those places deep within ourselves, if we ignore and neglect ourselves, this place can become dark and scary if you haven’t been in there for some time.

I practice Prayer and Meditation on a daily basis. My favorite meditation practice is a walking meditation. A walking meditation uses a different main focus point other than breathing, it uses the action and motion of our feet and body and uses breath as a secondary focus point. When you focus on the motion and movements of your body, it becomes much easier to start to notice all of the other things that are going on around you. For me when I practice a walking meditation, I start to notice the sort of ballet that is going on around me, I start to notice how I fit into that ballet.

One of my favorite practical exercises that I practice, might make me sound like a creep or stalker or something like that (LOL) but rest assured that I am not! I go to a busy place, like a mall or park, or someplace like that and I sit and observe. I focus on what people are doing, how they are acting, feel what they are feeling, try to think what they are thinking. Not only is this a good exercise in mindfulness, but a great exercise in practicing empathy. It was very difficult for me at first because there is a lot going on in those kind of places. After a while it becomes easier and you will find a whole new world open up to you when you learn to focus and attune yourself to the moment.

I hope you enjoyed the article! Listen to part to the radio broadcast of this topic over at the Knights Of Awakening Youtube channel. Stay tuned for part 4 of this series coming soon! Until next time………..

Awaken the Knight Within!

Let’s Regroup Protestors! Pt. 1

As promised, here are the sources you can check out:
Megyn Kelly with Jorge Ramos of Univision
Ted Cruz Twitter
Latest Polls

Looking for Community works!

As part of our commitment to community outreach and awareness at the Knights Of Awakening, we are looking for original stories, articles, blog posts, discussions, art, music, teachings, or other that you have come across in your groups or communities that we can feature and help bring attention to in a future Knights Of Awakening project.

These works are not limited, and can be anything you find inspirational, insightful, useful, or worth sharing. All attributions will be given to the original authors and creators. These works would be used across all of our platforms (Video, Shows, and others). We would need the original authors/creators permission to use. The purpose for this is simple, there is some great stuff going on out there and we want everyone to know about it!

You can send your submissions to knightsofawakening@gmail.com

Thank you so much for your support for the Knights Of Awakening! Until next time……

Awaken the Knight Within!

 

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The Road to Recovery and New Beginnings. Part 2: Gratitude- Fixtures in the background.

The Road to Recovery and New Beginnings. Part 2: Gratitude- Fixtures in the background.

A Knights Of Awakening Radio and Blog series

Hosted by Justin Bane

Welcome to part 2 of this new series! In the last episode was an introduction to the series and a little background to bring us closer in understanding. I hope you enjoyed it and I look forward to continuing with this second part with you!

It’s not like I somehow forgot to be grateful and thankful in my life. But I certainly had found myself somehow taking many things for granted. We get to points in our lives where things seem to become automated in a way. Everyday tasks become background noise to a point and people in our lives become fixtures. I would go about my daily life as if everything would always fall into place and arrogantly take all of the credit, as if it were simply my Will that made everything the way it needed to be.

I get up in the morning and grab a cup of joe, turn on the TV to the local news to check the weather and happenings of the day. I slept in as I do many days of the week on the days I work, because I didn’t get home until around 3AM. When I have had my fill of TV, I go to the computer and check out what is happening with my friends and family. Daily routine, filled with background noise and fixtures. I look over and see a clean uniform waiting for me hanging up in the living room ready to go, simply waiting for me to put the pins, name tag, and badge on it so I can look sharp and professional for work. Just another typical day, filled with background noise and fixtures. This day was going to be different, this day I was going to be awakened…..

I am walking along and out of nowhere, I am on the ground looking at my left foot which was now completely turned the opposite way and pointing at my right foot. What the hell just happened!?!?! I turn my foot back into the position it is supposed to be. I gain my bearings and do everything I can to drag myself out of harms way and to my patrol car to call for help. Funny how all of those “fixtures” become real again when you are suddenly snapped into the moment. People rushed over to help and try and comfort me. Arrogantly I tell them that everything is ok and that they all need to calm down and be careful because of the ice that was completely invisible. I asked one of these so called fixtures in my life to call my friends at the Fire station for help, because I am starting to realize that this one may just be bigger than me.

Counting my fire buddies, Family, Partner, Chief, bystanders, and the hospital staff nearly 30 people fawned over me. Most trying to keep me comfortable, others doing the work they had to do to stabilize me and figure out just how bad it was. Of course I kept telling them that it will be ok and that I will be fine. They reassured me that they were going to check just in case. They knew how bad it was, they just didn’t want to worry me. They all were just looking out for me.

I go home that night with my wife and mother-in-law. Telling me how tough I was and how brave, given that I nearly broke the bone so bad that it nearly came out of my leg. My wife kept telling me over and over again. She knew I was scared, I think that scared the hell out of her too, given that she had never known me be scared of anything.

The next few days I laid around trying to keep my foot elevated and iced down. She fed me, clothed me, covered me to keep me warm, helped me take my medicine, took all of my phone calls, handled all of my business and affairs, and never left my side. She stayed up with me at night because I was not sleeping mainly due to the nightmares that I was having. She was my guardian, my rock, my foundation. All of the things that is usually my job and burden to bare. I understand that she was suddenly doing all of these extra things for me because I could not do them for myself. It is no different when she had her many surgeries and I provided the same care for her. That was not the important lesson that I was going to re-learn, it was the wake-up call that I did need though.

It was the days and weeks up until this point, 1 month after the accident, that I started to realize that the background noise and fixtures were there because I had taken many things and people in my life for granted. Once I was forced out of my routine, and I was forced to open my eyes and take a look around and see things for what they were. Sometimes being suddenly and completely mindful has a way of waking you up. But mindfulness is a topic for another discussion later.

Earlier I took you through a typical day in my life. Lets look at that again with a different lens; I get up in the morning and grab a cup of joe (that my Wife got up early to make), turn on the TV to the local news to check the weather and happenings of the day. I slept in as I do many days of the week on the days I work, because I didn’t get home until around 3AM (my Wife and children get up early and get ready for school and work taking great care that they do not wake me). When I have had my fill of TV, I go to the computer and check out what is happening with my friends and family (who take the time out of their day to send me things and keep me in the loop of what is going on, if only to put a smile on my face). I look over and see a clean uniform waiting for me hanging up in the living room ready to go, simply waiting for me to put the pins, name tag, and badge on it so I can look sharp and professional for work (a uniform that is washed and pressed, even though she has her own clothes to worry about).

I broke one of the Knights Of Awakenings golden rules; I allowed myself to get comfortable and stagnant. I allowed myself to take moments and people in my life for granted. As I continue the healing process, I vow to take it one step and one moment at a time, so that I can be present and grateful for those moments and people that make life great. I understand that being in an active state of gratitude is a choice, and that active participation is mandatory. I am grateful my eyes were opened to this oversight on my part. I am not happy I was hurt badly, but I am happy that I can now look at this from a different perspective and see what I have been missing out on.

I am grateful for the experience and being present within it. I am grateful that I was not hurt any worse than I was. I am grateful for the moments in my life that give validation but also the moments that give me grief and make me uncomfortable and push me to my limits. I am grateful for the people in my life who offers compassion, comfort, love, understanding, and the opportunity to show them my gratitude and love in return. I am grateful for the people who push me to my breaking point and force me to go beyond that. I am grateful that I am able to live my life in a way that no matter what happens to me, it is still always on my terms. I am grateful that you have taken the time to read this, without you, there is no Knights Of Awakening!

I hope you will listen to the show portion of this topic and I look forward to reading your comments! Please feel free to share your stories of a similar situation that you may have found yourself in. Until next time………..

Awaken the Knight Within!

Upload Schedule and KOA news

Hello everyone, I hope you are enjoying the new series!  I wanted to give you the upload schedule for the series so that you can stay in the know.  I also want to share some news about the KOA with you, but first things first!

Part 2: Gratitude-“Fixtures in the Background” will hit on Wed. March 16th around 12PM EST

Part 3: Mindfulness-“Choose to Participate” will hit on Mon. March 21st around 12PM EST

Part 4: Compassion and Empathy-“You feel me?” Will hit on Wed. March 23rd around 12PM EST

Part 5: Humility-“I’m only Human” will hit on Mon. 27th at around 12PM EST

There will be more than 5 episodes, but I wanted to keep you up to date on the days and times that the videos will drop in March over at our YouTube channel.  You might be seeing a pattern here (lol).  Any of the content that is straight to video, will be uploading on Mondays and Wednesdays at around 12PM EST for the foreseeable future.  We strive to be consistent with the times and days so that it is easier for all of us to stay on track and connected.

On to some Knights Of Awakening news…….

I am gearing up to offer a LIVE show 1-2 days a week, over at our BlogTalkRadio.com station.  This will allow you to call in and participate, share your thoughts and ideas, ask questions, or anything else you want to share.  For now, I don’t have any further details on when we will start offering a LIVE show, what potential topics we will cover, or who will be involved.  But I would anticipate that the first episode for us will be within the first two weeks of April 2016.  There are some scheduling issues I have to account for and work around for this to happen, but I wanted to share this with you so that you are prepared.

We are also working on some promotional deals with partners in the community, to cross promote and share content to reach an even larger audience then ever before.  We will go back to basics and work hard to get interesting guests for interviews, and offer our platform to the larger community so they are able to get the word out about their news and events.  We are planning on expanding the YouTube channel to grow the different types of content that you will be able to find there as well (Gaming, Reviews, Vlogs, and much more).

That is all I had to share with you for now, until next time………..

Awaken the Knight Within!