Category Archives: mystical micheal musings

Memorial Day Musings on Strength & Honor

MemorialEagle

What began just after the Civil War as a day of remembrance for our country’s war dead sure has morphed and changed since the time of Lincoln. 

Today, Memorial Day seems forever tied to backyard barbecues, swimming pools, and appliance sales.  Ironically, here in metro New Orleans, at stores on Veterans Memorial Boulevard.
 
MemorialCookoutYes, the last Monday of every May has now become the unofficial start to America’s summer. As the true meaning becomes lost along with the ashes of yesterday’s cookout.
 
What needs to be remembered – and indeed commemorated on this day – is the Strength & Honor that drove America’s war dead down the path to becoming America’s war dead.
 
Thumbing through the pages of history it becomes very apparent. People come and go. Causes come and go. What is perceived as Right & Wrong comes and goes.
Strength & Honor are universal constants that do not.
 
Ya know, when Abe Lincoln was a little boy, you or I could have gone down to the French Market here in New Orleans… and purchased Shaquille O’Neal!
And, no, not to play on our basketball team.
 
What is Right and what is Wrong, indeed all man’s laws are founded and based on man’s myopia, his nearsightedness  … on the ever-shifting sands of human perspective.
 
20120531-bbqday1Universal Law, some would call Divine Law, works from another level altogether. And this is the level where Strength & Honor LIVE!
 
Strength & Honor do not recognize skin color, nationality, culture, time or space … or even a uniform.
 
From ancient Greece through the Roman Empire … from Britain’s mastery of the world’s oceans to America (England, Junior) and her not-so-civil war … the dead have piled-up in the countless billions! 
 
Causes, Empires, Cultures, Countries and what is perceived as Right & Wrong have shifted with the winds of change down through all the centuries.
 
Strength & Honor have not.
 
America’s heralded General Patton once remarked that “No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country.  He won it by making the other poor bastard die for his country.”
 
On this Memorial Day weekend 2019 let’s you & I send up a prayer.  A prayer to the Father – to what Napoleon Hill termed ‘Infinite Intelligence’ – to remove ‘bastard’, ‘war’, ‘death’ and ‘country’ from this equation. 
 
And let me raise a glass,  possibly a leftover beer from your backyard barbecue, and propose a toast.
A toast – To Strength & Honor!
 
~ With respect & prayers from the new Jer-USA-lem, New Orleans,
     
    Micheal G. Ziants
memorialday_observe
 
Airlift Productions ~ a Catalyst for Positive Change since 1984
*************************************************************
“Mike, thank you for 25 years of successfully teaching Algebra to children of color and students who were living in poverty. They aren’t living in poverty anymore thanks to you and the mathematical skills you gave them. They are doctors, engineers and scientists today.” ~ the late John R. Lee, Founder of the I CAN Learn Mathematics E-Learning System

Things I’ve Learned About Life From Deepak Chopra

BFFs Wayne Dyer & Deepak Chopra, and a program that changed my life, “Beyond Miracles”

I first “met” Deepak Chopra through the writings, teachings, and lectures of Wayne Dyer.

As fellow mystics & metaphysicians, these two were BFFs (best friends forever) until Wayne’s untimely passing  three and a half years ago in Maui.

Together, through my now decades of study, these two have helped to unravel many of the mysteries of life – as well as death – for me.

But chief among them is the thought process that is the subject of this blog.

As astonishing as it seems upon first inspection… it is now a scientifically proven fact that there is not a single atom in the human body today that was there seven years ago!

That is YOUR body and mine.

While at first blush this sounds absolutely mad, pause to consider but a few facts from our everyday lives…

Every time you clip your fingernails, or get your hair cut, or exfoliate in the bathroom daily… where was that fingernail, or hair follicle, or skin cell last week or last month, to say nothing of last year?!?

That’s right. It was latent, born, and growing inside of you.

Just as the spring flowers in the garden return every year, or the apple that ‘magically’ appears on the tree, as humans, we are constantly reinventing ourselves from the inside out every day, 24-7-365 from every single thing that we eat, drink, and breathe.

As they say in New Orleans, ‘for true’!

As further proof of this scientific fact, the drug testing world now routinely clips hair from a suspect to determine marijuana use.

For the hair follicle will show conclusive proof of its use – and where was that hair months ago, but being fed by and grown from the inhalation of marijuana smoke.

Good buddies (and ‘Buddhas’?) L-R. Wayne Dyer, Eckhart Tolle, Deepak Chopra

Furthermore, as Deepak so eloquently instructed me, especially here in the West, we mistakenly equate the human brain with the MIND, when they are, indeed, separate things!

While the brain is roughly three and a a half pounds of grey matter, driven by chemicals and electricity at the top of the spine… the mind exists in and, in fact, drives every cell of the human body.

And this ‘mind’ is constantly eavesdropping on every thought and emotion entertained by the brain.

Metaphorically, our bodies would then be the hi-tech, latest, state of the art airplane, while the ‘mind’ would act 24-7 as the air traffic controller!

So, we all need to control and be ever vigilant regarding the thoughts we allow ourselves from moment to moment.

Too much?

Well, the rishis, yogis, and spiritual masters who populate the ashrams of the far East would beg to differ.

Pause to consider, what the Carpenter from Galilee was really trying to get through to his 1st century posse on that ill-fated last supper in the upper room was that when He drank the wine – it would literally become His blood. And when He ate the bread, likewise, it would become His flesh!

We must all either view food as our medicine… or we will have to view medicine (Big Pharma) as our food.

New stomach, new skeletal structure, new organs, new skin, new heart, new brain.

Every seven years.

In fact, the very words you are reading right now are being written by the new 2019 version of Micheal Ziants’ brain!

What a marvelous revelation and epiphany this is for an otherwise clueless 21st century man – driving through the Wendy’s pickup window and scarfing down Tombstone frozen pizzas from the Rouse’s.

To the point?

Perhaps it indeed is true! We are what we eat… literally!

So, let’s all give more thought to EVERY thing that we eat, drink, and, yes, breathe on a daily basis.

For if you – the reader of these words – is not ultimately and totally responsible for every morsel of food and every drink that passes your lips, as well as every thought that you carry in your mind, I’d like to respectfully ask you… who is?

(Come on, guys, I can’t write only about VoiceOver and recording all the time. Especially when physical shape and excellent health certainly contribute to great on-mic performance, right?…mgz)

~ Micheal Ziants – Airlift Mike, NEW Orleans, LA, USA

***************************************************************

Airlift Productions – Audio Alchemy from NOLA since 1984

Size Counts! Or Does It? Get A Grip … On This.

Chichen Itza Pyramid

Long before the days of the white man, in fact when all of Europe was still a wilderness – to say nothing of what we today call ‘America’ –  the Maya in the Yucatan had a thriving commerce based on silver & gold … and charted the heavens with a stunning accuracy that still stands today.

From their observatories on the temple mount high atop the jungle, in a society that revered nothing if not time – they were the very first to witness the sunrise ….  and the last to admire and pray upon the sunset. 

My studies with the Maya have taught me many things, but chief among them is this thought process that I share with you here:

With talk of the recent ‘Super Blood Wolf Moon’ still fresh, travel with me on a meditation of the mind as I walk you through some ‘Spiritual Aerobics’ – a stretching exercise as it were – and yet use science, facts & logic all along the way…

AirliftProductionsTheBlueMarble

Our Moon in the night sky is roughly 240,000 miles from Earth, while our sun is 93 million miles away. The Speed of Light clocks-in at 186,000 miles/second! Really. So, it takes our sun’s rays a little over 8-and-a-half minutes to make the journey from their origin until they reach our Earth.

Now, if light travels that FAR that FAST, can you even begin to get your mind around the distance light would travel in an hour? A day?  A week?

How about a year?!?

This is what the scientist ~ in the days before Columbus, before Galileo ~  the Mayan astronomer would call a ‘Light Year’.

Now, picture yourself camping on a star-filled night under the stars’ heavenly canopy. Pick out a star. Among the billions of possibilities, for the sake of example, let’s choose Betelgeuse, which sits in the middle of the Belt of Orion.

This ‘star’ – this SUN – is 642.5 LIGHT YEARS from Earth!  So, in the same way as our sun’s rays take just over 8 minutes to make their journey, here’s the punchline — 

That ‘starlight’ touching your eye left Betelgeuse BEFORE your grandparents’ grandparents’ grandparents … were BORN!

 

AirliftProductionsBetelgeuseToSun
Earth, the 3rd rock from the sun, is but a very small grain of sand on a rather immense & intense beach.  And it is not our final home.  Even the Carpenter from Nazareth would talk of the fact that His Father’s House had many rooms.  H-m-mm….

So, past all the science, numbers & math … ‘at the end of the day’ as the white man is often wont to say, what’s the take-away message?

It is simply this:  let’s you & I let the ego go. E-G-O … Earth Guide Only, Edging God Out, Eliminating Golden Opportunities … Forget the silly turf wars, dial-down all the drama & conflict,   and at least TRY to Increase The Peace.

Pause to consider, it’s called the ‘Universe’… break it down – ‘Uni’ {One} …. ‘Verse’ {Song} .

We all need to learn to sing the same song.

After all, in the ‘Big Picture’, from the ‘Slippery Slope, at the  ‘End of the Day’ (dare I say ‘literally’?) ….

You and I are but germs on a rock ball spinning around a ball of fire!

~ Micheal Ziants

Putting in time here on the 3rd rock, from the New Jer-USA-lem

AirliftProductionsMilkyWay

          To Communicate is the Beginning of Understanding.

Airlift Productions Communicates.

Questions For The Angels from Brother Paul & Airlift Mike

It’s been awhile since I last posted a full-on, space-cowboy, metaphysical musings blog, so on this fall Sunday morning in 2018, let’s have at it.

 

As a cradle Catholic & life-long Truth Seeker, I have many questions for the angels, but for the sake of brevity let’s focus on but a couple.

From ” the Gospel of Paul” – Paul Simon that is – he opines…

“If every human on the planet, and all the buildings on it should disappear… Would a zebra grazing in the African savanna care enough to shed one zebra tear?”

If you’ve never experienced this song before, do yourself a revealing, enlightening treat here….

** Paul Simon’s “Questions for the Angels”

And, Paul, as you walk away this year from your fantastic odyssey, many thanks for your inestimable contributions to the American/World Song Book. Much love and respect, my brother.

Now, a few questions from yours truly, Airlift Mike.

Why is that when man talks to God, we call it prayer… but why, should God ever decide to talk back to man, do we have to call it schizophrenia or bipolar disorder?

The psychiatric community, as it is practiced today – from the local “shrink’s office” to Big Pharma’s billion dollar yearly take – is but a scant hundred years old!

Sigmund Freud and Carl Gustav Jung

These very same issues of the ID versus Spirit were argued about back and forth last century by Sigmund Freud and C. G. Jung. (These two actually rode a steam ship from Europe to the US in the early 1900s and analyzed each other’s dreams along the way.)

EGO vs. Spirit.

OK, then, if you’ve run with me so far, let’s take it a bit further.

What if the young maid from Domremy had been sitting, somewhat agitated, in a psychiatrist’s office five hundred years ago? I picture the conversation going something like this:

“Well, gee, doc, I don’t know exactly what’s going on here, but lately, I haven’t been sleeping well. And last night, Archangel Mike was talking to me. He was! And he told me that Charles the Dauphin should be the King of France! Really. And he also told me that one day I would lead my country in revolt!”

Whoa! Wait a minute. When women here in America couldn’t even vote in an election a hundred years ago… this is a 13 year old peasant girl from the farms of Europe over five hundred years ago.

Well, there’s little doubt that the psych community would have intervened – and that’s putting it mildly.

Straight jackets. Haldol. Lithium. Leather restraints. Padded cells. Perhaps even some electro-shock therapy…

And the revelations & accomplishments of young Joan of Arc – now romanticized, mythologized, and marbleized (as in statues) –  as the church took the Maid of Orleans down to the stake, would simply have never happened.

Also for your consideration…

While Jesus of Nazareth’s exploits, shrouded in the mists and myths of time, continue to be speculated over by scholars, the story of young Franceso is historically well documented.

Francis, as a late Italian teen, returned from war, committed to never again make that mistake. And as the son of a wealthy clothier, was expected to follow in pop’s footsteps. But, did it happen?

Uh-no.

What Francis did do – after angelic intervention – was to deny his mother and father’s wishes, walk away from the family business – and in front of the town’s people, the church elders, as well as mom and dad… strip himself stark naked and walk into the woods to seek enlightenment!

Now, what would the psychiatric community today have done to young Francis… seven hundred years ago?

Same deal. Same results.

Only this time, the results would have been considerably more dramatic.

We would not, here in 2018, have a worldwide order of monks known as the Franciscans. The AA meetings would not have their famous 12-step recovery prayer.

Oh, and that quaint city on our west coast would never have been known as… San Francisco!

Too much? 

Perhaps, but certainly grist for thought.

So, the next time you encounter someone on the streets of America, perhaps homeless… lost, talking seemingly to themselves (and they’re not on a cell phone) ….

give them your understanding, and a wide berth, because you never know – do you – who…

or to Whom they may be speaking.

********************************************

~ writing with humility, love and respect from the new Jer-USA-lem,  New Orleans, LA, USA,

Micheal Ziants

 

A ShoutOut to Sister Thecla in the Spirit World From Airlift Productions

SisterTheclaMichealZiantsAirliftProductions2008
Sister Thecla celebrating her 75th year as a nun in the Order of the Holy Family ~ along with Micheal Ziants in 2009

Today, January 10th, 2018, would have been Sister Thecla’s 104th birthday.

Born Agnes Bonner in 1914 in Scott, LA, Sister Thecla was a nun in New Orleans’ Order of the Holy Family for 75 years!

I first met the good sister through mutual friend John Lee in the aftermath of a rather painful divorce.  We took to each other immediately.  She wore her air of peaceful equanimity and compassionate non-judgment like a crown.

Calling the house every night for 7 straight years, she consoled and comforted, listened and directed, laughed and cried … and prayed with me.

Would that we all could make the ‘other side’ so clearly visible from this one.

SisterThecla1934AirliftProductions
Sister Thecla in 1934, as she took her vows to be a nun. I always used to tease her that we would get Halle Berry to play her in the made-for-TV movie! 🙂

Never one to proselytize, catechize or evangelize – ‘Sister Tee’ showed by her example, the way she lived her life every minute of everyday … the way to a Kingly life.

After all, True religion is not something to be ‘put on’ for an hour or two a week in a building, but rightly used is knit into the day-to-day fabric of our very lives.  Wow!  Did Thecla ever get that.

Through her 75 year run as a nun she led the posse at the Order, in the French Quarter originally, and then on Chef Menteur, through quite a litany list of soap operas … as they tended to the temporal, as well as the spiritual, needs of everyone!

That’s everyone.  From hookers, homeless and drug addicts … to abandoned children and severely abused women.  The Sisters of the Order of the Holy Family even took in Louis Armstrong at one point in his life.

SisterTheclaRecordsHerLifeStoryAtAirliftProductions
In 2004, on her 90th birthday, Sister Thecla visited the Airlift Productions Studios to record her life story

 

*** Thecla Therapy  ~  “What a Wonderful World” from Airlift ***

Sister Thecla’s unyielding faith, relentless compassion, and inner strength are captured in her voice.  Listen to just a bit of this remarkable spirit – the patron saint of Airlift Productions –  in this recording made on her 90th birthday in 2004.

SisterTheclaMichealAndBenZiants2004
Sister Thecla hanging with the sinners – the Ziants boyz Ben & Micheal – on Thanksgiving 2004

Though she dropped her body in 2009, I won’t say ‘rest in peace’ at this point.  Because she’s still at it today … planning her work, and working her plan.  That’s what that Roman Catholic concept of ‘communion of the saints’ is really all about.

Let me just say God Speed, ‘Sister Tee’!  And thanks ever so for helping me to be a little more than just human … and for helping Airlift Productions in NOLA to be  a little something more than just a recording studio.

MichealZiantsAndSisterTheclaAirliftProductions2008
Airlift’s Micheal Ziants and BFF Sister Thecla hanging around the Order of the Holy Family commissary on Father’s Day 2008

 

*************************************************************************

“Mike, thank you for 25 years of successfully teaching Algebra to children of color and students who were living in poverty. They aren’t living in poverty anymore thanks to you and the mathematical skills you gave them. They are doctors, engineers and scientists today.” ~ the late JOHN R. LEE, founder & creator of the I CAN Learn Mathematics Educational Software

 

***********************************************************************

Airlift Productions ~ Audio Alchemy & Digital Magic from New Orleans… since 1984

Easter Weekend Reflections from Airlift Mike

Whether the reader of these words be Christian, Jew, Muslim, Buddhist, Hindu, Atheist, Agnostic, or none-of-the-above – there is one thing in which we all must be in agreement: this Jesus of Nazareth’s impact on planet earth and it’s history is undeniable, quantifiable, and measurable.

Through all these now twenty centuries, his messages of Peace, Love, Hope & Redemption have reverberated strongly, from the blood-soaked sands of his birth in the Middle-East to the church steeples on the corners of Anytown, USA.

And as you and I dance every day on a whisker-thin bubble that separates this life from the afterlife, Easter weekend reminds us all of his hopeful, joyful promise of that life which follows this one.

Let’s be honest. This is the part that hangs us all up the most. 

TheLaughingChristViaAirliftProductionsNOLA
The Laughing Christ – an artist’s rendering that has adorned the Airlift Productions Studio Walls for over two decades

Life after Death? Really?

When I’m often questioned on this one, I respond, “Well, where do you go when you dream? We already spend a third of our lives (sleeping) existing in pure consciousness. What’s the big deal about going from one third to three thirds?”

We will all do the math.

Life is but a parenthesis in eternity.  From cradle to grave, sperm to worm, womb to tomb … in the final reality – Eternity – no more real than an eight hour nightly dream on your Serta perfect sleeper. For true.

Jesus of Nazareth got that! He lived that. He died that. Or did he? 

Truth be known – You and I are but ghosts driving  meat-coated skeletons made from stardust! Let that one sink in a bit. The biggest part of any of us will never show up in an autopsy. And it’s not about the name on your driver’s license, or how much water you displace in a hot tub. All things must pass. You and me included.

What fights the realization that these words I write are true is Ego. E-G-O – Earth Guide Only, Edging God Out, Eliminating Golden Opportunities! Merely one of the teachings that the Nazarene – in his too-short tour of duty – was trying to get through to mortal man.

And I continue to be amazed by some of our sayings, like “Hey, I’m only human!” No, you’re not. We’re all more. Much more.

But here’s the big caveat – only to the extent that we realize this, internalize this, and make it our day-to-day reality. 

Yeshua, along with the Lion and the Lamb ... and a promise of 'swords to plowshares' ... death to the EGO and a promise of everlasting Life
Yeshua, along with the Lion and the Lamb … and a promise of ‘swords to plowshares’ … death to the EGO and a promise of everlasting Life

If you’ve run with me this far, let’s take it a bit further.

I’ll never understand the Christian who makes fun of the Jew, when Judaism was the incubator for all Christianity! While many will agree that Jesus to his death was still a Jew, few realize that St. Paul (Saul of Tarsus) to his beheading by Nero in 68 AD Rome – was still a Jew!

So, if looked at from a different perspective, all what we term ‘Christianity’ today could be viewed as a rather elaborate and magnificent Jewish sect.  Yes,  the two great faith traditions are inextricably and deliciously intertwined at the root forever.

Easter, Passover – from solemn seder meals to Good Friday crawfish boils – we all need to find a way to come to the same table!

And 9-11 & Osama Bin Laden no more represented sacred Islam than David Koresh at Waco or a hooded Klansman at a lynching represented sacred Christianity. But that is the subject for another holiday weekend blog, another day.

"I am in the Father... and the Father is in Me" ~ 21st century style
“I am in the Father… and the Father is in Me” ~ 21st century style

Yes, this Jesus of Nazareth sure did teach us all to “color outside the lines” … and think “outside the box”. Wait a minute, you mean there’s a box?

Yes, the one humans call a coffin.  

And the everlasting promise of this Easter weekend – no matter what your faith or belief system – is that ‘the box’ is not the end … of … the … story.

(to be continued)

Airlift Productions & Airlift Mike wish ALL across the planet a Happy, Peace-full, Easter Weekend!

                To Communicate is the Beginning of Understanding! 

                               Airlift Productions Communicates.

Merry Christmas! And An Open Letter From Jesus of Nazareth

NativitySceneAirliftProductionsNewOrleans

I am the one called Yeshua and was born some twenty centuries ago in a sleepy village known as Bethlehem, Israel, Middle-East on planet Earth in the backwaters of the Milky Way. And times were hard.

Slavery. False gods. Racism. Prejudice. Violence. And most of the known world lived under the boot of the Roman Empire. Today in 2017, sadly, these same problems persist – only the names have been changed to protect the guilty.

Ironically, I drove the money changers out of the temple all those centuries ago, only to see that the religions founded in my name have today all opened the doors widely. And let them all back in!

It would seem that my message of Love, Peace, Brotherhood, and Equality of all men has been hijacked by otherwise well-intentioned men who claim to follow me – only to use it to their own ends.  And all from separate camps.

JesusLooksDownFromCloudsAirliftProductionsFrom the Roman Catholic to the Protestant, from the Southern Baptist to the Jehovah Witness, from the Mormon … to David Koresh’s Branch Davidian compound at Waco – all have built WALLS to keep their believers IN, and the non-believers OUT.

A True Faith, a True Religion, indeed a True Spirituality should build bridges – not walls. The bridge, by definition, must touch both banks of the river, and allow for two-way traffic. I came to the 3rd rock from the sun to serve as a bridge … God the Father in Me became Man … so that one day man could become … and return to God.

And as to this fixation on the Cross? Way too much emphasis has been placed on the final ugly twelve hours of my life (from Gethsemane to Golgotha, thanks, Mel Gibson) fostering centuries of guilt, when the emphasis should be placed on the glorious, Joy-full, Joy-US way in which I lived each and every day of my Life!

After all, should I return today and be found guilty of similar ‘crimes against the state’/sedition and be sentenced to death, twenty centuries from today, would you be wearing an electric chair or a gurney with a syringe around your neck? I think not.

If there should be any symbol at all for my true followers – it should be the Open Tomb, for I came indeed to grant ALL the keys to eternal life.

Jesus-Earth

Yes, of course, my blood was shed for ALL  that fateful Friday on the ‘hill of skulls’, but what I wanted remembered and commemorated was the way in which I lived, not the excruciatingly painful way in which I “died” and went to the cross.

My LIFE is my message. Consider, as a case in point, my very first miracle – at the wedding feast at Cana.  Many know of the water that became wine in the jars of clay. But few realize that I was the very last to leave the dance floor that night.

And as to this Micheal who purports to put these words into my mouth?

Well, frankly, the Father & I have through all man’s centuries always chosen to work through plain, ordinary, salt-of-the-earth types – fishermen, shepherd boys, whores, even tax collectors.  Simply add one more sinner to the list.

Finally,  your Faith in me should not be relegated to an observance, head-bowed once a week in a building, in a church or temple. It should be knit into the everyday fabric of your daily life … and lived!

After all, I came to your planet not to be venerated.  But imitated.

Follow me.  Please?

img040

Oh, and I almost forgot. Merry Christ-mas to ALL from the New Jer-USA-lem!  And thanks for all the neat presents. You really shouldn’t have.

————————————————

Respectfully, and with prayers for the 3rd rock to IncreaseThePeace ~

Micheal Z

Menasche, Ziants & Carell – Take #2

DavidMenascheThePriorityListAirliftProductions
Educator-Author-Brain Cancer Activist-Major Mensch David Menasche before doctors and Life had their way with him… proud, defiant and topless – displaying his “I Decide” tattoo

Hard to believe, but this past Thanksgiving weekend 2015 marks one year since my pal David Menasche dropped his body … and moved on.

Oh, not that it was any surprise – diagnosed with terminal brain cancer in 2006, he/we often joked as he would come for recording sessions at the Airlift Productions Studios, that here came a “Dead Man Walking”. He knew he was on borrowed time for some time. We all did.

But it was the things, the issues, the subjects we talked of endlessly that continue to reverberate and resonate still today through all of my waking, and yes even sleeping, hours.

Emerson, Thoreau, Shakespeare, Gandhi, Buddha, Jesus of Nazareth, even Scot William Wallace from Mel’s “Braveheart” and the concept that “Everyone has to die … but not everyone truly LIVES.”

Case in point, pictured above, David even had his body tattooed with the words “I Decide”, so even while unconscious on an operating table, he was letting the attending doctors know who, indeed, was in charge of the flesh he carried around.

Cajones? Guts? Tenacity? Courage?  I don’t think the average man walking around today in America even has a concept or a clue.

And to think that he dragged his body across America – SOLO – from south Florida … all the way to the Golden Gate bridge & Hollywood, then back east & north to New York City, before coming to crash in New Orleans for awhile – all in a quest to figure out if his life, his very existence, even ever mattered.

DavidMenascheRecordsThePriorityListAirliftProductions
David Menasche in the Airlift Productions Studios, November 2013, recording “The Priority List: A Teacher’s Final Quest to Discover Life’s Greatest Lessons”

Rest in Peace and rest assured, brother David, it certainly did.

As you scramble across the holidays to find that perfect stocking stuffer, and you’re looking for something to make a difference, consider “The Priority List: A Teacher’s Final Quest to Discover Life’s Greatest Lessons”  from that wacky Amazon crowd.

Or, alternately, you can grab the AUDIO download for your ipod or digital device here – “The Priority List” Audiobook – in David’s own resilient words captured in November 2013 at the Airlift Studios.

A teaser from the Airlift-produced prologue is here ….

David’s take on working with Airlift and me? While I’m certainly gratified and humble regarding my contributions, the testimonial he gave me after days spent recording his audio book is a tad embarrassing, but very heartfelt and sincere —

“I would like to thank Micheal Ziants and Airlift Productions for making the recording of the audio version of my book such a pleasure. Not only is Micheal an incredible audio engineer, he is my new best friend. This guy is one of the coolest cats I have ever had the honor of meeting. He made me comfortable, he made me feel talented, and he actually made my book into a product I can actually imagine people enjoying listening to. So far, the opportunity to work with Michael on a future project is my best incentive to write another book.” ~ David Menasche

Meanwhile, Hollywood and Steve Carell are laying plans for their adaptation for a cinematic treatment.  Having worked intimately with David, and being a fan of Steve’s work through the years, I feel he is the perfect choice for this heroic, poignant drama-dey in-progress.

SteveCarellToPortrayDavidMenascheThePriorityList
Warner Brothers selects Steve Carell to portray David Menasche in the movie version of “The Priority List”

Norma, if you’re reading this – stay strong and keep your faith. Paula, if you’re reading this – David understands. Jennifer, if you’re reading this – call me, let’s compare notes and catch-up.

 

SteveCarellTweetsReDavidMenaschePassing11-20-14
Actor Steve Carell’s Tribute Tweet to  David Menasche

 

In closing, just one of David’s and my favorite thoughts that we spoke of, meditated on, and laughed often about continues to reverberate and resonate – “You’re a ghost driving a meat-coated skeleton made from stardust. What do you have to be afraid of?”

 

MichealZiantsDavidMenascheThePriorityListAirliftProductions
Airlift’s Micheal Ziants & Author/Bud/Educator/Major Mensch David Menasche sharing recording studio stories and after-dinner laughs in the Airlift commissary, November 2013

 

Airlift Productions ~ Audio Alchemy from New Orleans since 1984

The Immortal Wayne Dyer & His Airlift Legacy

WayneDyerHandsClaspedA week ago last night a candle went out in Maui, as Dr. Wayne Dyer drew his last breath and proceeded to drop his body an ocean away in Hawaii.

I first “met” Wayne through a series of audio cassettes I’d ordered from Nightingale-Conant in Chicago.  The series was called “The Awakened Life”. The year was 1987.  And my life was never the same.

Wayne introduced me to eastern, metaphysical, transcendent thought, he opened my eyes – and spirit – as he challenged me to take chances with my life that I would have never dared in the past. I learned to jump off cliffs … and build wings on the way down.

Emerson & Thoreau came alive for me,  sacred scripture never rang so true, mystical sages of history spoke clearly in my ears,  as night-after-night I listened to Wayne unraveling and demystifying thought concepts that for so long were so foreign to me.

That’s all changed. Thanks, Wayne.

Through now-decades of his lectures, writings & teachings, he introduced me to Alan Watts, Deepak Chopra, Ram Dass, Carl Jung, and many others.  Together, we’ve traveled the shores of Galilee with Jesus of Nazareth, meditated under the bodhi tree with the Buddha, and ridden camel-back with Muhammad across the sands of Mecca.

WayneDyerAutographToMichealZiants
My autographed copy of Wayne’s “The Secrets To Manifesting Your Destiny” program

We first met, personally, in March of 1997 at a Life Expo here in New Orleans. I confessed to him that he had very directly inspired me to ‘roll the dice’ and move my Airlift Productions business from my closet to a bonafide store-front with shingle out front on Iberville Street back in ’89.

He laughed and would take no credit whatsoever, saying that he never wanted to be anyone’s ‘guru’.  Further joking that if he ever took credit for anyone’s success …  that he’d also have to share the blame for their failures! 🙂

It was roughly a year later, while I was leading a  production team working for a NYC-based ad agency recording radio commercials in Toronto, Canada that we met again.

This time the visit was much more personal.

Through our days-long, sleep-deprived job in Toronto, I had quoted Wayne’s most incredible body of work extensively to the team I’d traveled with to Canada. At the end of the convention, we then rushed off to the airport to catch our flight back to New Orleans.

Dr.-Wayne-Dyer-RIP-at75_8-30-15Dog-tired, with my head down, waiting for our plane, a pair of sandal-ed feet walked past my field of vision. I looked up – and it was Wayne Dyer!

Together with his assistant Maya, he was en-route  from addressing a seminar in Amsterdam, headed back to his family in south Florida. As I shook my head in surprise and astonishment, he joked, “Well, Micheal, it would seem that you manifested ME!”

We proceeded to talk and laugh together for a half-hour!

About EVERYTHING:  Life, loves, disappointments, divorce, enlightenment, authorship, radio, recording, music, the Book of Tao, the Gita, days of future passed … he even was very complimentary about my voice.  Wow.

WayneDyerSeriousLookThen, called to our respective planes, we parted.  I will always treasure this remarkable day, and my not-so-coincidental conversation and time spent with this most remarkable spirit.

Dr. Dyer, quite frankly,  I am at a loss for words to describe the impact you’ve made on my life.  And, through my life and my Airlift Productions – and the lessons you’ve taught me – the impact I have then made on countless hundreds of other lives.

BuddhaCandles

It has been said that when the student is ready, the teacher will appear.  From the bottom of my heart and the height of my spirit, brother Wayne, thanks for appearing in my life… and sharing your candle with me.

 

Airlift Productions ~ Audio Alchemy from NOLA since 1984 (with a special assist-on-the-play from Dr. Wayne Dyer)

 

WayneDyerFacebookPicMemorial

Mother’s Day 2015 & The Hand That Rocks The Cradle

Many thoughts are rambling around my head on this Mother’s Day 2015, so I came here to unpack  a few of them.  Allow me to wish you & yours a Happy One, as I attempt to sort some things out.

aaa-motherearth2It’s been said that “The hand that rocks the cradle rules the world”, and indeed mothers – and the way in which they raise their children – most definitely mold and form society and the world in which we live.

Rightly or wrongly (and yes, there are bad mothers), through motherhood women leave their indelible mark on the planet.  Some seek to leave their footprints in the sands of time … while others leave but skid marks at the intersection.

Did you know that America’s first people, the Tribes – from the Sioux to the Cherokee – had quite a different view when talk of the planet and mothers was involved?

e5871399b6d1a59cbec107dc5635ba43To them, four simple words summed-up all of existence – “Mother Earth, Father Sky”.

ALL food, all sustenance – indeed all life – grew from the Earth! Berries, fruit, maize, corn, wheat ALL came from the dirt beneath their feet.  Mother Earth.

And all this nourishment, the very essence of life, would not be possible without the rains and the sun to make it grow.  Father Sky.

Pretty simple, huh?  And pretty true, too.

Well, if you’ve run with me this far on this Mother’s Day, let’s run just a bit further.   I’m haunted as of late by a line from Paul Simon’s tune “Questions For the Angels”, wherein he poses this question…

“If every human on the planet and all the buildings on it should disappear…  would a zebra grazing on the African savanna care enough to shed one zebra tear?”

Wow! Ponder that one a moment.  Let that one sink-in a bit.

fb112df7fe4157dff7836f18d9dd8297And I realize that it’s more than a tad on the dark side (for Mother’s Day 2015), but couple that thought with this troubling nightmare that persists… in my New Orleans nights.

The whole planet Earth – all 7-billion+and counting – all humanity … the very planet we call home – gone! Disappeared.  And the epitaph on the tombstone says rather succinctly – “Well, it seemed like a good idea at the time.” ~ the Father.

No. Despite all human ‘advancements’ and technology and progress and religion and culture … in the eyes of the Creator Spirit that is All — we just didn’t cut it.

1401389338528328800And the kicker?  In the Big Picture?  In the eyes of the vast universe… the disappearance of this one little planet in the backwaters of the Milky Way, here in what we call the 21st Century … didn’t even make the front page in the Sunday Universal Times.

Yet, from the palaces of Kim Jong Un to Vlad Putin, the games persist. And from the streets of Ferguson, MO to Baltimore, MD… peace, love & respect for human dignity increasingly get lost in our crazed, frantic and hyper-connected digital world.

And the beat goes on.  Until it doesn’t.

I only wish that I had a rosier picture to paint this morning, but we’ll save that ‘rose’ for the Mother’s Day bouquet sitting on kitchen tables all over the world at this moment.

*** Airlift Mike’s “This Is For the Mothers” ***

KatyAndSophieTuckerAndPumpkins

 

MichealZiantsNewOrleansVoiceOverTalentArtistRenderingAnd along with it, a Hope and a Prayer … for your Mother Earth and mine.

IncreaseThePeace …  with Love & Respect ~ Micheal Z

To communicate is the Beginning of Understanding.

Airlift Productions Communicates.

… from the new Jer-USA-lem