Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Paying it Forward - "Flight to Hartford"

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One of the most important spiritual principles involve the cycle of giving and receiving, which represents the true nature of the universe. So my question for you today is: "How are you 'paying it forward' this week?"

A little over a year ago, I relocated to a small sleepy town of Akron, Ohio to undergo special flight training which eventually resulted in aviation history. In Feb 06, I defied the nay-sayers who said it couldn't be done and became the world's first deaf instrument rated pilot. You can read more about this by visiting the aviation biography section at: http://www.sjhopson.com/bio-flying.htm

When I first arrived to town, I looked everywhere for a spiritual place to worship where I could get away from the enormous pressures of making aviation history. My desire was a non-denominational church where no one was judged - another very important spiritual principle. I wanted a place where all people were welcome regardless of their race, gender, faith, nationality, creed, disability, sexual orientation, political affiliation, occupation, education and so forth. I've always believed that God loves each and everyone of us. Many of the world's religions would have you believe that God is like the discriminating bouncer at a popular nightclub; accepting only the beautiful and powerful while rejecting everyone else. That never made sense to me!

One day I stumbled onto their website by accident and learned that approximately five years ago, Pastor Bob Dreese of First Grace United Church of Christ blew away traditional norms by declaring the church to be open to all, just as how I believe God intended. At that moment, I knew I had found my spiritual home away from home.

But I soon learned how this very bold statement came at a terrible price. More than half of the congregation fled in fear because their way of thinking was still deeply rooted into the "discriminating bouncer" concept.

Since then, First Grace has been busy rebuilding its congregation. True to their word, NO ONE has been turned away. NO ONE. Because of this, I want to "pay it forward" in a very special way by helping First Grace refill the pews and make someone else's dream of flight come true by using my God-given aviation talents.

That "someone" is Ryan Mathews who is also a member of First Grace UCC. He uses a motorized wheelchair to get around. Like me, he has never let his disability stop him from achieving his dreams. He recently graduated with top honors from the University of Akron with a degree in music education. Ryan now lives out his life's purpose as a talented musician and educator, touching countless of lives. And would you know that one of his dreams is to actually go for a flight in a small plane?

We are renting a small plane in June 07 and flying ourselves to Hartford, CT to help United Church of Christ celebrate 50 years in existence. Also aboard will be Ron Hoff, a talented videographer who will tape the flight for a documentary to be made at a later time.

Imagine this...a deaf pilot at the controls with a disabled man in the right seat acting as a "co-pilot"! What a better way of paying it forward and showing the world that people with disabilities can achieve their dreams?!?!

We have dubbed this project "Flight to Hartford." If you wish to help, please visit First Grace's website for more information - there is a link on the site where you can download a donation card to send your contribution by mail if you are inspired to do so:


Side note: UCC has many prominent members across the United States including Presidential hopeful Barack Obama, Howard Dean (former Presidential candidate and Natl Democratic Chair), Marilynne Robinson (Pulitzer Prize winner) and Reverend Andrew Young (US Statesman) plus many others.
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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

"The Secret" DVD

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Have you heard of the "Law of Attraction"? No doubt you have. Even before this fantastic DVD came out (it was featured and the most talked about on Oprah recently), most of my adult life has been operating on universal law of attraction principles.

If you haven't seen it, I highly recommend you get it for your DVD library. Here are some of the highlights:

1. Your life is based on what you are thinking and feeling - you attract in your life everything that is happening right now. This is hard for a lot of people to swallow because instead of looking at themselves, they want point their fingers at other people and circumstances.

2. The power of visualizing what you want cannot be underestimated. Long before "The Secret" came out, I used visualization techniques to become the world's first deaf instrument rated pilot, to win sales trips while a rookie at Merrill Lynch, to become a pilot long before I knew deaf pilots existed and to attract people in the literary world and many other things. I know from experience it works!

3. There is one universal law for everyone on this planet and that's the law of attraction. It is always in operation whether you believe in its existence or not, whether you understand how it works or not. Take electricity for example. We know it works. Like Bob Proctor says in "The Secret," we know it provides man with electricity to cook and we also know it can cook the man. We do not know how it works but we get the benefits of electricity. It's the same with the "law of attraction."

4. You've seen from previous articles that if you ask, you shall receive. You can speed up the process by visualizing the end result (with vivid images, emotion and feeling) on a daily basis. I've also written about the visualization process in this blog. Start by writing down what you really want in your life. Write them in present tense - for example, "I am grateful that........" Act and feel as if you already have what you want.

5. The "law of attraction" does not distinquish between good thoughts and bad thoughts. Like the law of gravity, if you jump off the Empire State building, regardless of whether you are a good person or not, you will still fall to the ground. It's the same with the law of attraction. Regardless of whether you think good or bad thoughts, you will attract them. In essence, you've placed an order with the universe.

6. The most powerful principle with the "law of attraction" is that it is important to focus on what you want; not what you don't want. If you think about getting out of debt, you will never get out of debt! Why? Because the more you focus on how it makes you feel sick to your stomach, the more you talk about how awful your life is because you're laden with debt, the more you will attract it because that's what you're focused on. Your wish is the universe's command! Instead of focusing on how much debt you are in, focus on prosperity. Visualize your mailbox filling up with checks rather than bills. Set up an automatic debt repayment plan and just forget about it!

7. Your job is to change your thought process, focus on what you want and don't worry about the how. That's the universe's job. If it's money you need, you will attract it. If it's people you need to help you, you will attract that as well. If it's equipment, materials or supplies to make your dream come true, you will bring them into your life. The universe will rearrange itself to bring forth the results you ask and visualize for yourself. The universe is like one giant catalog!

7. Another thing that I've repeatedly written about in this blog is the attitude of gratitude. The more you are grateful for what you have, the more you will have it. Gratitude is a powerful emotion, the energy of which goes out to the universe and comes back to you many times over.

We are entering a very exciting time of our lives on this planet. "The Secret" is waking up millions of people and letting them know they can have a prosperous, happy, joyful life if they just make some adjustments with the way they think.

I've already purchased the DVD and I also have the hardcopy book coming. You can read about it by going to either Oprah's website or the official site of "The Secret."
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