Why Does The Caged Bird Sing?

Happy Friday … and … Thank God It’s Friday!

Yes, yes I am very grateful today … for many many reasons. How about you all? I hope you are feeling the same way, om shanti (peace)!

So, the University of Miami has an issue … a BIG issue … to handle in regards to the convicted panzi schemer who bilked people of hundreds of millions of dollars – Mr. Shapiro – whom one critic says has a Napoleon complex! On the news last night, a gentleman who is obviously a supporter of the football program there at The U of M said he was “three foot three”! There were pictures of him, Mr. Shapiro, amongst some of the football players and he looked child-like with them! He brings a new meaning to “Why Does the Caged Bird Sing?”, a line from the original poem by Paul Laurence Dunbar, later inculcated as the title of a poem by the esteemed author, Maya Angelou, right?! Now that Mr. Shapiro is in prison … for 25 plus years … he is singing like a bird! May we not forget the young players who succumbed to his “game” to “have all, know all and provide all”! There will be some trouble at the University of Miami’s athletic program due to this “bum of a booster”!

I must mention the event of the Rakhi Celebration which was held at the Hillcrest Community’s “Playdium” in Hollywood, FL Wednesday night, which was nicely done by the sisters from the Brahma Kumaris from Miami, Hollywood and Miramar. Sister Ganga, who gave me personal classes in Raj meditation, touched our foreheads with a drop of oil as we went one by one onto the stage, and then placed the traditional bracelet on our wrists in silence. Then, Sister Marianne, who was next to Ganga, sat with each of us a moment in peace and silence until she gave us a card and a sweet bread. Finally, Sister Roz, the Public Relations person for the Hollywood group and other Brahma Kumaris centres, meditated a moment and gave brief inspirational words to each of us personally as we stood near her until she gave us a piece of fruit before we each departed the stage. There were maybe 100 of us more or less … festive and peaceful … two hours of meditation and quiet music as well as tiny lights and incense filled the air! Om shanti!

Tomorrow afternoon, here in FTL, I will be working with H.E.R.O. who is providing local needy youth with book bags and supplies to go in them for their “Back to School” program. I intend to speak with them a bit about keeping in mind the “Stop the Violence” campaign that many groups, including my own spiritual entity known as Educational Excellence, are advocating as the youth prepare for another exciting school year.

In addition, Ms. Tanya Simons-Oparah, Director of Community Outreach for the Broward County Libraries, informed me that tomorrow, Saturday at 6pm, at the Joseph C. Carter Park on Sunrise Blvd. near I-95 in FTL, there will be a celebration for historical icon Marcus Garvey, whose birthday was Wednesday. We expect to have a blood relative of Fredrick Douglas there as well as Marcus’s son, Dr. Julius Garvey, to be a part of the celebration.

Have a fine weekend … and send the kids back to school with class and style … and … peace!

Om shanti,

John I. Cook, Director

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