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My Birthday Wish List

TODAY, October 15, is my birthday (I’m a Libra Girl), and I am hoping the next year will be transformational for me. Below are the gifts I am wishing for. I have wished for them before, but I like them so I am wishing for them again. 

Four of the gifts I want for my birthday are:

  1. The gift of weight loss and incredibly good health for myself.
  2. The gift of good health and happiness for my family and friends.
  3. The gift of empathy, clarity, compassion, wisdom and good will for our world political, religious, and community leaders.
  4. The gift of peace and happiness for all others.

But I also have other less tangible things for myself on my #BirthdayWishList: Creativity; Imagination; Purpose; Motivation; Meaning; Empathy; Humility; Discernment, Kindness; Peace; Happiness; Joy; Zest; Compassion; Tolerance; Patience; Wisdom; Mercy; Forgiveness; Courage; Protection; Safety; Serenity; Balance; Friendship and Fun; Bliss.

       GOD grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference. 

AND A GIFT I WANT THAT SEEMS IMPOSSIBLE: To start a #WorldEmpathyDayWhat if we started a movement to get as many people as possible, in as many countries as possible, and in as many institutions as possible (schools, hospitals, jails, mental institutions, newspapers, internet providers, churches, synagogues, mosques, covens, corporations, governmental entities, country clubs, social media outlets, factories, museums, movie theaters, financial institutions, skating rinks, etc.) to practice empathy towards all they come into contact with for just one day. ONE DAY! 

By empathy I mean putting one's self into the shoes of another who is of a different race, age, religion, nationality, gender, age, physical ability, economic status, mental ability or political persuasion, and feeling so intimately and compassionately what it is like to be that person that the separation between you melts away and you begin to comprehend his/her feelings, thoughts and motives, and understand their pain, aspirations or dreams.   

What would change? Would anything shift in the global consciousness? Could this start a domino effect of tearing down the divisions that cause us to see and vilify and otherize anyone not like us? Would this, at least temporarily, reverse the Atomic Clock ticking towards midnight and total destruction?

Would it allow us to tap into the supposed unified consciousness that predates our physical bodies? Would it halt increasing acts of terrorism? Would we open our hearts to more love, less war, more compassion, less selfishness? Would it allow our world leaders to see solutions to problems that were heretofore hidden from their view (or their hearts), and embrace them as an antidote to the increasing warring industrial complex? 

Would it let us peep through the membrane between this world and the next and allow us to merge with it for just a second and glimpse infinity? Could we begin to practice the ideas that I am my brother’s keeper, I am my sister’s salvation, and that society is better when we are all better?

Well, whether or not we actually accomplish this, it is my birthday and that is what I want to fantasize about today.

Chaz Ebert

Chaz is the CEO of several Ebert enterprises, including the President of The Ebert Company Ltd, and of Ebert Digital LLC, Publisher of, President of Ebert Productions and Chairman of the Board of The Roger and Chaz Ebert Foundation, and Co-Founder and Producer of Ebertfest, the film festival now in its 24th year.

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