Roman Numerals

Elegant but not so simple . . .

Don’t flinch, I know this page looks like Egyptian hieroglyphics but, today I’m dipping into the numerical system of the early Romans,

It seems the craziest, numerical system ever, but it worked back then and once you catch the rules, it still works. I’ve always dabbled with it, but this time I found an expert, Ellen Wilson Thayn, at the Murray Public Library, who gave me a set of rules, and once I began using those rules, it didn’t seem simple, no, but at least understandable.

To begin with, I called one of my smart acquaintances, and then another, and another, but, dang it, they all got that glazed look (yeah I can tell a glazed look over email) and all backed out. Each a Triple AAA intellect in their own fields, but not in Roman Numerals. I tried ‘Ye Olde Editor’, Jim Cornwell; Dean Fairbank, brains to spare; Tom Smith, Teacher who specializes in oddities; Wayne Ursenbach, Physical Chemist; that smart Dr. Bruce Parsons; and with all those brains not a one knew about Roman Numerals. Not even MMXIV.

So, with advice from my old boss, Jim, I turned to the place that has been the haven of knowledge since ancient Alexandria, The Library, and there in that place of all wisdom, Ellen Wilson Thayn didn’t even blink, but began revealing secrets as if she had grown up in ancient Italy. My answers came right from where I’ve gone for information ever since my Daddy used to take me as a child, The Murray Public Library.

Everything that’s correct, thank you, thank you, came from Ellen Thayn, the errors are what I’m good at and, with a shrug, must claim any.

roman numerals chart2romannumeralschartBBV- With a line over it, is 5,000

X-with a line over it, is 10,000

M- with a line over it, is 100,000


Feel the Force . . .

ESP is so commonplace that we don’t blink an eye about it. We know it’s Extra Sensory Perception, the Sixth Sense, but it’s different from the other five, Taste, Hearing, Smell, Touch, Sight, where no explanation is needed. It’s been called Gut Instinct, Third Eye, Hunch, Telepathy, Clairvoyance, Precognition and ad infinitum, but that still doesn’t tell us what it is.

However, when it hits, we need no explaining. One time I answered my phone and it was Margaret, from Seattle. Our acquaintance was so casual that I wondered why she’d called, but as she was getting ready to say goodbye, she asked if I knew where Florence could be reached.

“No,” I answered, “I haven’t seen or heard from her for over a year.” And she said, “Well, take down my phone number and if you happen to see her, tell her to give me a call.”

Now, hearing from Florence was so unlikely that I almost didn’t write down the number, but I carelessly scribbled it, while knowing I’d garbage it within a day or two.

However, believe it or not, before I even moved from the phone, it rang again, and yes, and you have already guessed that, of all people, it was Florence. She, too, had no real reason to call me, and it amazed us both when I told her what had just happened and she said, “Yes, I do need to talk to Margaret and had no idea how to do it, but, really, Ethel, I wasn’t thinking of her when I called you.”

In a daze I sat there and felt as if I had been used by someone or something. That I had been nothing but a Tool. Because, with no conscious thought, I had been the connecting link between two people who needed to reach each other and didn’t know how. It has remained one of those things that puzzle me to this day.

Another ESP ‘thing’ that we disregard, but if we live around animals, we know they have it.   Tales abound. My brother-in-law Jake had a Dachshund, and they read each other’s minds, and when Jake was returning from being gone for a day or week, that dang dog sensed his coming and sat by the door, and when he began jumping up and down and whimpering, Gram knew Jake was near. And he was. Again, don’t ask me how it happened, but it did.

There was a time when there were Milkmen, who using horse-drawn wagons. delivered our milk early in the a.m. and the tales told are many. It took but a week or so, for the horse to ‘know’ the route and so the man could leave the ‘stops’ up to the horse and he could nap, read, whatever, and the horse would stop at the right places.

As a young man my Granddad, as all men did, had a horse, and he said that at night, and no matter where he was in the valley, he could go to sleep and the horse would take him home.

And there’s the life-saving tale of a man on horseback, who lived in Bennion, when the valley’s west side was entirely open fields and, he got caught one night when an unexpected blizzard hit.

Blinded by snow and freezingly cold, he knew he could never find his way home, and so  put his life in the hands of God and his  horse.  He dropped the reins, gave his horse a ‘slap’  on its  rump,  huddled down to get any warmth he could get  from the back of the horse and, resigned his life to Fate. Within  half an hour they were at the barn and safe..

Without lights or other landmarlks,  the man was helpless but the horse knew where they were. Whatever ESP is, it’s hard to prove, that is, if it needs proving. It isn’t scientific, but far, far more than that, and don’t ask me to tell you ‘how’, because I can’t. I only know that it always was and still is.

The brain, as well as the heart, stomach, lungs, kidneys and on and on, can be weighed for size, heft and dissected, But the Mind? It uses the brain, but it is not the brain. And so vital that, no matter how good a body, or how much money one has, without the Mind we are just a body, nothing more.

Traveling the inward pathway to the Mind is the longest journey we’ll ever take.   But, so often without our permission or request, it uses me and it uses you and if you ever find out what ‘it’ is, tell me. But in the meantime and whatever it is, isn’t it great?????

Notes From My Refrigerator Door


I died as a rock and was born as soil,

I died as soil and was born a plant.

I died as a plant and was born an animal.

I died as an animal and was born a human.

I will die as a human

And become One with The Source.

(There may be millions  (billions?) of lives at each stage, but evolution is eternal)


Courage doesn’t always roar.

Sometimes it’s the quiet voice

At the end of the day, saying

“I will try again to-morrow.”


         The Masters are returning to earth, but they are coming unannounced. One might be on a lonely farm in some far off country. Any country. Any color skin. A taxi driver. Any degree of education. Waiting upon you in a store. Maybe a leader in some small church. They are everywhere.

         Monasteries are becoming empty, but Masters and their disciples are springing up everywhere, like mushrooms in some moist field. We do not find them because they do not want to be found.


Be careful how you live.

You may be the only Bible

Someone else will ever ‘Read’.


There isn’t God and you

It is always God as you.

And you are That.  Right now.


Life is the only Reality.

Death is but a process in Infinite Life.

And it is not that the dead will live again,

Rather, that those who Live . . . . shall never die.



1. The Man (Woman)

2. The Message

3. The Movement

4. The Monument

5. The Money

6. The Museum Piece

   The further the Teaching grows away from the First   Message, the more hidden That Message becomes,  and is the reason why new Teachings are constantly being  born, as people strive to eliminate all the confusion of rules and regulations and get back to that first, sweet Message of Loving God,  ourselves and each other.



Saddest Words of Tongue or Pen

 “It Might Have Been”

          A Cook Book is simply a cook book and unless you want to find a new recipe or check up on old one, it just sits on your shelf.

But I saw how a cook book restored an entire language to a man. A language long forgotten for it had not been spoken by or to him, since he had been a child of nine, and there he was in his 80’s.

That man was my father, Carl Ohlin, who came from Sweden with his parents, Peter and Maria as a 9 year old, and from that day forward, never heard Swedish spoken. The adult family worked hard to change their speech, and even in the  home, tried to speak nothing but English, and swiftly. Swedish  became a foreign language.

It wasn’t difficult for people coming here from other countries. because everyone, the church speakers, in stores, work places and the kids playing in the streets, all spoke English and so there was no use, time or interest, to continue with Swedish language.

To aid him, within just a year or two of his arriving here, Carl found a used, torn book in a gutter. Though he couldn’t read it, the book was obviously a discard, so he picked it up.   It was the adventure book of   “SHE”, written by Henry Rider Haggard, and with the help of an older friend, he learned to read and understand English from that book..

Dad, eventually became an avid reader of books of any and all genre, and one day, sitting at my kitchen table, enjoying the national drink of Sweden, a cuppa coffee, he told me of that book “SHE”. and how he had learned to read it.  And I laughed for that book has lasted through the years and I had read it not too long before.

Anyway, it was at this time that Dad told me that he had forgotten Swedish, the language of his childhood, and try as he might, could not remember even one word.

I was a young woman at that time, and Dad, who married late in life, was decades older than most parents, and was like a Grandfather to me.  I heard his words, but what he said seemed so remote that I couldn’t see what they really had to do with me. It took  years for me to realize of what value his words had been, and now  I would give much if I could spend a day with him at my kitchen table and a filled Coffee pot nearby.

But then, one day as I prowled the used books in Deseret Industry, I came upon, of all things, a Cook Book, written in Swedish. and bought it. thinking Dad might get a kick out of it. Which he did, and far more too, for it wasn’t more than a week or so later that he, again at my table, told me the Cook Book had given him back his native language

See, food is food and a cake cooked in Sweden, France, Italy or any other country is a cake and made in the same way,  So, if it says 1 cup of something or other, it wasn’t hard for Dad to figure it out when it meant flour, sugar or milk. And the same going on with the entire recipe.

He said it was easy to translate, oven, stove, stir, bake, the heat of the oven. Those words, in any kitchen are universal, and Dad found other words of that language coming swiftly to his mind. Once the door was open, he was able to step through and then, the way of reading and speaking Swedish came easily. Though long buried, once started, it came flooding back to him.

Yes, a cook book returned the language of Dad’s youth to him. Sadly, there was no one to speak it with, and I was too young, heedless. (stupid?) to bother. But now I wish I had asked him questions and had him respond in his first language. How I regret that I didn’t explore the miracle that happened at my own kitchen table.  And to my own father.

John Greenleaf Whittier said it best, “Of all sad words of tongue and pen, the saddest are, ‘It might have been’ “.


Think it over . . .

The Good Book says not to lie, but I betcha there isn’t one person on this planet who can go a day without lying.

Some lies we need, and there are times when they are demanded if we want to get along in the world. They are so much a part of being civilized that not to lie can be cruel and inhuman. For good or bad, our culture is built around the lies we tell each other, and without them, this world might be better in some ways—but it could be much worse in other ways. Read on.

If we didn’t tell a few, we’d soon have no friends, and peppering a few lies here and there, is the only way to keep them, and I mean the friends. There’s no way you can tell another what you actually think of the clothes she often chooses, or what you really think of her boy friend, or worse still, her husband.

The old adage says: “White lies are the oil that keeps life’s ‘machinery’ running smoothly,” and the one who penned those words had ‘been around the block’ and knew the score.

Who could be so cruel as to tell a bride that she isn’t beautiful? Or that the new born baby isn’t a living doll, even though everyone knows that most newborns look like Winston Churchill, and he wasn’t famous for his good looks.

Wars are started when nations tell the truth about their plans, and peace comes only when the leaders start lying. Think it over, think it over.

And politicians have only one goal, i.e. to be elected. And the slogan of everyone of them, in their words is, “This world, (Country, State, City, County) is in a mess and I’m the only one who knows how to fix it.”  And every other word they speak is an outcrop of that lie.

And then they start telling us what we want to hear, and they know they’re lying, as when the first President Bush said, “Read my lips. I won’t raise your taxes. Read my lips.” Shakespeare said it best, “What fools we mortals be.”

But inasmuch as few of us will ever run for high office, let’s get down to the everyday kind of lie. Routine lies. “How are you?” we ask. the other says, “Fine,” Lies, both of them, because you were only saying “Hello” and not asking about their health,

My mother told that lie, and as a child I’d get mad because I often knew she wasn’t feeling fine, and wondered why she lied, No one criticized her, but I got punished when I lied. But now I know.

If I’m ill or there’s something wrong, I lie and tell no one. But, once I’m well, I tell everyone, but until then, I lie, and lie and lie. And silently apologize to Mom. But, getting down to just plain old everyday living, lies are not only wanted, but needed.   You meet your best friend for lunch and as she enters the cafe, you wonder what in the world happened to her hair. Doesn’t she have a mirror? Is she blind?   But as she sits down, your first words are, “Oh, you have a new hairdo.’

No,  you didn’t actually lie, but it was implied and she beams, thinks you are wonderful, and that she looks terrific.. You keep your thoughts to yourself, and everyone’s happy. And thank heaven’s you don’t know what she might be thinking about your hair.

Then, as you witness the wedding vows of some dear friend, you can almost see the divorce papers waving in the offing, but did you tell the truth, when she gushingly asked, “Oh, isn’t he just wonderful?”

No, but you actually agreed with her as you inwardly thought, “I think he’s a drip, a gambler, a cheat and before a year is over, you’ll be wondering why you married him” But you smile and lie. After all, you want to have her for a friend after the fireworks are over. Marriages, you know, can be of short stuff, while friendships are for life.

I know, and so do you, of huge sad happenings and sometimes tell a big lie (i.e.”I don’t know”) to not reveal what is past and gone. And, striving for someone else’s happiness, and basically, none of my business, my lips are sealed forever. And I know, and you too, know that there are other tales that if not covered with a silent lie, would have caused only heartache and sorrow. You be the judge.

But I’ve seen when the white lie, that sweet lie, the kind lie, the blessed lie is actually the kindest words ever spoken and as time passes, you know it was the most needed ‘truth’ ever given and was a blessing for all.

Yes, there are times when the White Lie is the most wonderful words ever spoken.. Are you still with me?