The Mission Continues
As a Christian, I have to evaluate everything I think, say, and do, according to whom did it before me. And the only way for me to manifest that reality, is to "become" what it is He was talking about. As time goes on, I begin to look more and more like Him. I have heard that Jesus had a "ruddy" complexion and was not what many would consider "handsome"; it was His "life" that was "Beautiful" and what He did and how he did it, with love and compassion. Living through some of the same sufferings or disadvantages as He did in His time, is teaching the homeless lessons that many of the wealthy will NEVER know. When it comes to living in harmony with those that have different beliefs we must all remember that we are forbidden to judge. My life and my responsibility is what I will be held accountable for, YOUR life is none of my business. If I approach you and we agree to talk, I will tell you only what I know out of love for you and the possibility that a life path is endangering you and or others. At the present time I see this as a big part of the lesson I am being shown. And now you can also share this in my life as well. In the past 2 years being a homeless advocate and volunteer service worker, if you watch whats been happening through the Humanity Hub, you will see that it's not me doing a lot of anything, it's being done as the Spirit moves us to act, and as people respond to the call. I'm just a guy standing in the middle of a catastrophe crawling on my knees asking God what to do.
Dead Amongst the Living 2/02/15
Dirty clothes, the smell of unwashed bodies, and the occasional person vomiting near you where the norms that I'm pretty sure nobody chooses to exist in, but find themselves in. I've sat with families in tears along curbs scrounging for enough change to get them a motel room so that they wouldn't have to be exposed to some the potential savagery that happens at night. There were times when I have had to use violence to protect people that were not able to protect themselves. Your sense of awareness is set on "high alert" 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and for many 365 days a year. My life for the past 2 years have been blessed by people that have supported my project from the beginning and along the way. I have had times indoors so as not to take to hard of a toll on my psychological and physical health. But even then, I suffered a certain measure of slowing mental processes and a decrease in decision making abilities from fatigue and sleep deprivation. People suffer from forms of PTSD and Secondary PTSD due to either being brutalized or witnessing friends and loved ones being brutalized or even killed. And once you have lost SLEEP you cannot get it back, non regenerative sleep causes anxiety, stress, depression, paranoia, and an exceptionally high risk of suicide. Being on the streets day by day with your neck on a swivel takes a slow grinding toll on any human being.
There exists in the homeless population what I think the term "houseless" fits well when speaking of those people that have become homeless but have taken a liking to it. They "want" to just be left alone to live their lives "outside". They don't want a house to live in nor do they want to be stuck with a lifetime of struggle to keep it. Many of them have already had what many of you will never have, and decided it wasn't worth it and want to live without it. It's very simple, any human being actually has that right to live that way if so be it, and they deserve space to be that. Where, when, and who said that it was wrong to live "outside"? Besides, you know damned well that you yourself, the reader, has probably sat at a campground around a fire, looking into the sky's thinking how fun it would be to live outside. Why???? Because isn't that where we all come from? I for one, want to be one of those people, and when I'm ready to come indoors for the winter, I should have that right to do so. And now its criminal? We have a system that dumps it's mentally ill out onto the streets with nothing more than an appointment and a prescription, and expect them to survive. Well, from what I've been living amongst, I've seen up close whats really going on. I've been victimized by other people as well as the police, and I fear the police more than the homeless. We all know that if a homeless person kills someone, they go to prison for life. And of course recent news headlines prove cops that kill a person, gets a vacation.
The living are not just those that have had great success in life or have invested a lifetime of hard work to attain their idea of material and financial safety. Some of us have had those but lost id in dirty dealings and illegal methods that get away with it still to this day with no end in sight. So, many of us want nothing to do with that anymore, and for many, it's just that simple folks. Many are here on the streets because of addictions and alcohol reasons and they still deserve continuous help until they 'get it". For most of you, if someone wasn't there for you, you would be sitting next to me. Some of us have nobody, like me, all of my family other than my children are all dead now. And it's a very lonely and scary feeling sometimes. Those of you who have gotten to know me and meet me know what kind of person I am for the most part. And most of the people are just like me, once you let them know you love them. And so I have chosen to live my life as an "Outsider", but because of my aging, I will be more and more indoors as time comes upon me and I must leave.
From His Hands to My Mouth 2/02/15
On march 1st it will be the two year anniversary of my walking out of my home and into the streets to take up residence with other homeless people to best be of service to the community. It has been the hardest thing I have ever done in my life and I have come to love it so much. The creation of The Humanity Hub was birthed from this and it sustains people that would have surely died in the streets and continues to serve them today. It has had it's ups and downs, but I am still here as others who have joined me had to attend to their families from time to time. The thing is, I am attempting to create my own living that makes it's living off of helping other make their living as well. It is a sort of symbiotic relationship with it's final goal to put itself out of business, not to rake in huge profits. But just enough to serve the needs of the people as it slowly increases in its ability to perform more various forms of outreach. Because I am in close touch to the movements and whereabouts of some of the homeless camps that move around, I can become a liaison to those outreach workers that can't find the people they are supposed to be helping...because they don't want to be found. They do not trust city workers or police for obvious reasons considering the regular homeless sweeps that are done. Tarps, Sleeping Bags, Hygiene Supplies and Backpacks are always the most needed items. Please help us with collection those as we move from the winter to the wetter spring time coming. I will be looking at the death numbers for this year to see if we were successful in our #zerodeaths campaign. I have not had any reports of death by exposure as of yet, but there was one death by violence that I know of this year.
We must continue to be supportive of the homeless while we are also working along side organizations that we are partnering with that will be building tiny house communities and homeless rest areas. I have been doing a lot of research into some of the ideas we have been talking about and I have been indoors this past few months while Cheeto and I heal enough to continue for another year into my commitment to the homeless. I believe that if we throw people at the problem more than money, we can make a bigger difference. I think that's why I don't spend as much time fund raising as I probably should. Not to mention that's my weak spot. If you know how to do that, I could use your skill set, and you could use the volunteerism...right?
Please feel free to contact me at anytime on facebook or at [email protected] I could use the help for the coming increase in population when the weather warms up. People come back out from hiding a lot more. And it needs will increase as well. Help!!!!!! I have found that it provides me with a way to live my life the way I want my world to be, so can you.
As I heal and respite I can go over the emotions and experiences I have just witnessed. It was savage at times but for the most part, it was a community struggling to learn how to survive. In the beginning I held no real faith in peoples ability to want to react to another homeless persons needs. But I was surprised when people started to donate, and I was making just enough to keep my smart phone going. I found that being n touch with people was going to be the most important thing I could do, so that the average person could see and know what it was like outside of what they had stereotyped in their minds.
If there is nothing left worth dying for, then there is nothing left to live for.
We are recreating our world as we see it to be fit for all of us to dwell in. We take the good things inside of each of us and we add it to another, and we deal with the negative things later when we know how to do so without adding harm to others. I can live with myself knowing that I have paid the price for my mistakes, and I'm about to commit more.
Showing compassion on others is WHAT I live for. It's what makes me feel like I "belong" to something greater than myself. When I sat down to write this, I had "faith" in the chair, that it would support my weight. We place our faith in so many things that it boggles my mind. But the faith that I have that Love will conquer over evil and Freedom is what I am will to die for. I don't have the convenience of not being "involved". If I really care about my children, I will be involved to death.
I've discovered that I'm not too good at blogging. It seems more like a mood thing, and I have to force myself to doing it. But there is a book that I'd like to write about my life outside on the streets. I've started it but seem to have flattened out in motivation.
I find myself thinking about when I began to see my father notice the slow loss of his friends in their old age. I now find myself doing the same thing. I now know the sadness of knowing the time for all of my generation will one day cease. I continue to strive for a better world in peace, and one day I too will enjoy my rest in peace.
The past few years have been filled with happiness, but usually birthed out of struggle. I see now even deeper how the "having joy in the midst of suffering" works.
On February 21st, word had reached me that one of my best friends had passed away. Joe "Hayseed" Deevers, died from terminal cancer that he learned he had after being hospitalized for frostbite. I'm considering changing the name of the humanity hub to "The Hayseed Foundation". I'm still considering the name but the name Hayseed will be in it.
Most educational programs are just memorization and regurgitation from a lot of books that are still historically incorrect.
Rants and Rages
It appears that the only solution left to us is to allow ourselves time to come out of the fog that has been spoon fed to us and our parents for generations, and find a place and cause against social injustice's in our communities where we can do the most good. Apparently large bodies of people gathering in the streets to protest are smashed before the voice of freedom has time to reach every ear. Those we have entrusted to notify us of the behavior of our government are owned and controlled by the ones they were supposed to be watching.
Who is Houseless
We daily walk the streets in our routine of life, distracted by all of the worlds advertisements and promises of wealth and stability. We go to schools that teach us that there are careers for us to follow, that will allow us to create that stability, many of us earn degrees. But as it goes; “A journey never follows a straight line”. The twists and turns of life seem to be in control and we seem to be in a constant state of waiting. Waiting until we earn enough, waiting until we have the time, waiting until the time is right. But that time also never seems to come for many, and sometimes it gets pushed farther and farther down the lifeline, until you realize, I was too busy serving the paycheck to “take” the time to live, or to make a difference, and now it’s too late,and I’m to old. And I have no problem telling you that that is one of the biggest lies that we tell ourselves. For some strange reason, When I see the huge numbers of homelessness, I don’t think of “what they have done wrong” I think more along the line of “ Dear God… What have we done wrong??? And when they die on our streets, that’s when I know… We didn’t do enough!
Many factors play a role in why people become homeless. The economy, bad decisions, bad investments, as well as the unforeseen. We cannot see everything coming at us, and sometimes we can only react to things that happen. But what is it like when one has ran out of options and there is nothing left to do, except survive? We appear to be living in a time where huge corporations are taking away that time and wealth, and a vast population is now seeing no end to the taking away of what they have earned or, they have no chance of ever earning.The faces of homelessness has changed. It is no longer the “rejects of society”. It is the ex-business owner, ex-homeowners, couch surfers, basement dwellers; relatives that have had to move in with one another, and those too ashamed to be visible in public.
According to the picture I get when I read the Constitution of the United States, I see a country that has reached a point where it has become not only our right, but our duty to no longer give the politicians and corporations “consent” to usurp the power that “WE” gave them, that power needs to be returned to it’s rightful owners..US!The present policies of the City of Portland denies a person (with no options) the human need for sleep for survival. THIS IS NOTHING MORE THAN AN EXAMPLE OF INHUMANITY TO MAN and must be abolished to allow a human being SLEEP!
Imagine with me for a moment, a place where others are only watching you to see if there are any needs you have; and where you are also doing the same, watching to supply a need to another person. Suddenly, we find ourselves in a place where all of our needs are being met, and that's what happens when a “community” has come together. WATCH!!! and you will see, within your own circles, that you have something that you don’t use, that someone else needs...give it to them. It was never yours in the first place. Our air belongs to no person, our water belongs to no person, and your life was meant to be shared.
The darkness through the neighborhood was pierced by screaming accusations and venomous words of disgust and anguish. The cries of children in the background wrenches your stomach to the point of wanting to investigate. Laura whispers in my ear “it sounds like they’re at it again”. Ever since Dimitri lost his job and the factory closed they’ve been struggling and he’s been drinking a lot. All I wanted was a quiet nights sleep. So I got up and tripped over the dog and into my slippers to venture out to see what was going on. Standing on the front stoop I could hear the shattering of something fragile. Also approaching the front of the house were four other neighbors, Luke, Amy, Mike and John. We all stopped at the front door to listen; It was like each one of us was waiting for somebody to be the first to reach for the door knob. I knocked…
The volume dropped dramatically as to a whisper. The door swings open and Dimitri is standing tightly up against the doorway and the door, cutting off a look further inside. But Mike being 6’5” towered over him and could clearly see Angela standing in the hall with a streak of blood streaming down the side of her mouth, and dark hand prints around her throat. Without a single warning, Mike moves up to the front of the door and say’s “Dimitri why have you done this to her”? Dimitri opens his mouth and Mike speaks over him in a loud voice “Angela” come here please”. Angela slowly begins to step towards the door when Dimitri tells her to stay there, she bolts herself to the ground. Amy steps up and walks through the door daring Dimitri to stop her. As Dimitri’s muscles begin to tighten in resistance Mike and John immediately grab Dimitri by the shirt and drag him through the door and walk him to the sidewalk. Amy goes into the house and walks with Angela through the door and out the door. All the while Mike and John were standing in front of Dimitri like a wall staring at him in righteous indignation.
“THIS IS NONE OF YOUR BUSINESS”!!! Dimitri screamed. YOU HAVE NO RIGHT!!! As john looked at Dimitri he said in a low calm voice “Dimitri, it’s you that has no right to do what you did, Now, it’s perfectly within our right to stop you, even more so… it’s our responsibility as a community. I’LL SEE YOU LATER ANGELA!!! Dimitri yelled. “You’ll see her when she feels like it, and when we know you're not going to ever hurt her again. Until then… Your single