Currently viewing the tag: "belief"

“I don’t care what you say,” said Viola. “It’s just not fair.” –Minnie’s Mincemeat Pie by Dale T. Phillips

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story with this as the first line.

Journaling Prompt: Write about something you feel is unfair and write what you think should be done instead.

Art Prompt: Unfair!

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience a humorous story about something that was unfair.

Photo Credit: Paul De Los Reyes on Flickr

I must reveal to you that I am not one of the Divine who march into the desert and return gravid with wisdom. –Women Who Run with Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estés, PhD

Fiction Writing Prompt: How does your protagonist feel about mysticism? How does this express itself in words, actions, and relationships?

Journaling Prompt: Write about a mystical experience you’ve had or would like to have.

Art Prompt: Mystic experience

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about the tradition of the Desert Fathers and Mothers, and give them suggestions about embracing the mysticism in the busyness of modern life..

Photo Credit: Bill Dickinson on Flickr


Diwali or Deepavali is the Hindu festival of lights celebrated every year in autumn in the northern hemisphere (spring in southern hemisphere). It is an official holiday in Fiji, Guyana, India, Pakistan, Malaysia, Mauritius, Myanmar, Nepal, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Suriname, and Trinidad and Tobago. One of the major festivals of Hinduism, it spiritually signifies the victory of light over darkness, good over evil, knowledge over ignorance, and hope over despair. Its celebration includes millions of lights shining on housetops, outside doors and windows, around temples and other buildings in the communities and countries where it is observed. The festival preparations and rituals typically extend over a five-day period, but the main festival night of Diwali coincides with the darkest, new moon night of the Hindu Lunisolar month Kartika in Bikram Sambat calendar. In the Gregorian calendar, Diwali night falls between mid-October and mid-November. –Wikipedia

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story set during Diwali or create a festival for the world you have created.

Journaling Prompt: Write about what candles and lights symbolize to you.

Art Prompt: Diwali

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about Diwali and compare it to a festival or holiday that you celebrate.

Photo Credit: Aeikesh Ghosh Dastidar on Flickr


The Shroud of Turin or Turin Shroud (Italian: Sindone di Torino, Sacra Sindone [‘sa?kra ‘sindone] or Santa Sindone), a length of linen cloth bearing the image of a man, is believed by some Christians to be the burial shroud of Jesus of Nazareth, although three radiocarbon dating tests in 1988 dated a sample of the cloth to the Middle Ages. The shroud is kept in the royal chapel of the Cathedral of Saint John the Baptist in Turin, northern Italy. The Catholic Church has neither formally endorsed nor rejected the shroud, but in 1958 Pope Pius XII approved of the image in association with the devotion to the Holy Face of Jesus…

…The image on the shroud is much clearer in black-and-white negative than in its natural sepia color, and this negative image was first observed in 1898 on the reverse photographic plate of amateur photographer Secondo Pia, who was allowed to photograph it while it was being exhibited. A variety of methods have been proposed for the formation of the image, but the actual method used has not yet been conclusively identified. Despite numerous investigations and tests, the status of the Shroud of Turin remains murky, and the nature of the image and how it was fixed on the cloth remain puzzling. The shroud continues to be both intensely studied and controversial. –Wikipedia

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story involving a mystery around a religious relic.

Journaling Prompt: Are mysteries surround religious relics important to your faith or not? Why?

Art Prompt: Shroud of Turin

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience the history of the Shroud of Turin.

Photo Credit: Shroud of Turin on Wikimedia


In the Ancient Near East along the Tigris–Euphrates river system there were many shrines and temples or “houses of heaven” dedicated to various deities documented by the Ancient Greek historian Herodotus in The Histories where sacred prostitution was a common practice. It came to an end when the emperor Constantine in the fourth century AD destroyed the goddess temples and replaced them with Christianity. –Wikipedia

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write the story of a sacred prostitute.

Journaling Prompt: Write about your feelings about sex as a sacred act.

Art Prompt: Sacred prostitute

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about the history of the houses of heaven and the women who worked in them.

Photo Credit: Wikimedia

children in Angola

I had traveled to Angola as part of an effort by the World Bank… the destruction of the people and their way of life had been so complete, the loss and pain so debilitating that they had lost the capacity to celebrate or affirm their lives in a way that we might recognize as recovery. The traditional sources of ritual and cultural teaching – the tribal shaman or medicine man, the death rituals, spiritual practice, music, dance, and tribal arts, for instance – had been wiped out or severely disabled in the war. Without these key elements of cultural survival, the struggle for individual survival was made even more difficult. –In the Moment: Celebrating the Everyday by Harvey L Rich, MD

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write the story of a people that has lost its culture. 

Journaling Prompt: Write about one aspect of you personal culture that you could not live without.

Art Prompt: My culture

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about your culture and what makes it special to you.

Photo Credit: wilsonbentos on Flickr

The Holy Pool of St. Fillan

At Strathfillan, there is a deep pool, called the Holy Pool, where, in olden times, they were wont to dip insane people. The ceremony was performed after sunset on the first day of the quarter, O. S.,* and before sunrise next morning. The dipped persons were instructed to take three stones from the bottom of the pool, and, walking three times round each of three cairns on the bank, throw a stone into each. They were next conveyed to the ruins of St Fillan’s chapel; and in a corner called St Fillan’s bed, they were laid on their back, and left tied all night. If next morning they were found loose, the cure was deemed perfect, and thanks returned to the saint. The pool is still (1843) visited, not by parishioners, for they have no faith in its virtue, but by people from other and distant places. –The Book of Days: A miscellany of popular antiquities in connection with the calendar, etc , W & R Chambers

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write the story of a miraculous healing at a holy pool.

Journaling Prompt: Do you believe in miracles?

Art Prompt: Miracle

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience the story of a pilgrimage to a holy place.

Photo Credit: Willie Angus on Flickr

For, you see, so many out-of-the-way things had happened lately, that Alice had begun to think that very few things indeed were really impossible. –The Complete Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

Fiction Writing Prompt: What impossible thing has occurred to your character that is causing him or her to consider other impossible possibilities?

Journaling Prompt: What do you believe is impossible that you are learning may be possible?

Art Prompt: Impossible possibilities

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about the power of believing the impossibility.

Photo Credit: cea + on Flickr

Most people have a tendency to believe that they’re more knowledgeable about a topic simply because they’re more familiar with it. They may have years of experience in a field, but still lack the detailed information required to accurately explain it. Teachers often discover this flaw when they attempt to explain a topic they thought they knew. To counteract someone’s claims that they “know” a field or subject they might not actually be that knowledgeable on, ask them to explain their position in detail first…

This strategy has two advantages: for starters, by allowing the other person to speak first, you open them up emotionally. Rather than starting off on a confrontational tone, allowing them to voice their perspective makes them feel more validated and, thus, more willing to listen to outside input. Secondly, it gives you a better look into how well they understand a subject, and where you can offer specific information that conflicts with their understanding. The more detailed and specific information you can offer contrary to their viewpoint, the easier it may be to persuade them to your side. –Eric Ravenscraft

Fiction Writing Prompt: Use this principle to put your protagonist in an uncomfortable position.

Journaling Prompt: Write about a time when you learned that you didn’t know as much as you thought you did.

Art Prompt: What you don’t know

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about this principle and share the technique for validating others in conversation.

Photo Credit: PhotoAtelier on Flickr

“People seem to have no idea how biased they are. Whether a good decision-maker or a bad one, everyone thinks that they are less biased than their peers,” said Carey Morewedge, associate professor of marketing at Boston University. “This susceptibility to the bias blind spot appears to be pervasive, and is unrelated to people’s intelligence, self-esteem, and actual ability to make unbiased judgments and decisions.”

They also found that people with a high bias blind spot are those most likely to ignore the advice of peers or experts, and are least likely to learn from de-biasing training that could improve the quality of their decisions. –Science Daily

Fiction Writing Prompt: Write a story with a protagonist who has a high bias blind spot.

Journaling Prompt: What are some of your biases? How do you think they affect you?

Art Prompt: Blind spot

Non-Fiction / Speechwriting Prompt: Tell your audience about blind spots and biases. Give them some strategies to notice their own biases in order to root them out.

Photo Credit: Thomas Hawk on Flickr