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Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing since she was a hippie. She began writing for OpEdNews in Feb, 2004. She became a Senior Editor in August 2012 and Managing Editor in January, 2013. In June, 2015, the combined views on her articles, diaries and quick link contributions topped one million. She was particularly happy that her article about Bree Newsome removing the Confederate flag was the one that put her past the million mark.
Her art in a wide variety of media can be seen on her YouTube video, "Visionary Artist Meryl Ann Butler on Creativity and Joy" at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UcGs2r_66QE
A NYC native, her response to 9-11 was to pen an invitation to healing through creativity, entitled, "90-Minute Quilts: 15+ Projects You Can Stitch in an Afternoon" (Krause 2006), which is a bestseller in the craft field. The sequel, MORE 90-Minute Quilts: 20+ Quick and Easy Projects With Triangles and Squares was released in April, 2011. Her popular video, How to Stitch a Quilt in 90 Minutes with Meryl Ann Butler can be seen at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PrShGOQaJQ8
She has been active in a number of international, arts-related projects as a citizen diplomat, and was arts advisor to Baltimore's CIUSSR (Center for Improving US-Soviet Relations), 1987-89. She made two trips to the former USSR in 1987 and 1988 to speak to artists, craftpeople and fashion designers on the topic of utilizing the arts as a tool for global wellbeing. She created the historical "First US-Soviet Children's Peace Quilt Exchange Project" in 1987-88, which was the first time a reciprocal quilt was given to the US from the former USSR.
Her artwork is in collections across the globe.
Meryl Ann is a founding member of The Labyrinth Society and has been building labyrinths since 1992. She publishes an annual article about the topic on OpEdNews on World Labyrinth Day, the first Saturday in May.
"Creativity and Healing: The Work of Meryl Ann Butler" by Burl Hall is at
Burl and Merry Hall interviewed Meryl Ann on their BlogTalk radio show, "Envision This," at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/envision-this/2013/04/11/meryl-ann-butler-art-as-a-medicine-for-the-soul
Archived articles www.opednews.com/author/author1820.html
Older archived articles, from before May 2005 are here.
Friday, December 4, 2015(2 comments)
How Dickens' Message Applies Today: Scrooge, Tiny Tim and the Arrogance of Wealth
"The shameless piling up of wealth, the poor struggling to survive, the penny pinching of welfare, and the lofty contempt of our rulers." These words describing Charles Dickens could also be applied to Bernie Sanders. OEN explores these comparisons between Victorian England and the US today in an interview with actor Chris Van Cleave, currently playing Scrooge in Virginia Musical Theater's production of A Christmas Carol.
Wednesday, November 25, 2015(6 comments)
The Thanksgiving Farce and What We Can Do About It
The actual Thanksgiving story goes something like this: illegal immigrants came to this country, pretended to be friendly to the inhabitants as long as it served their purposes, then killed, mutilated and subjugated the original citizens. We cannot change the past, but we can change the effect it has on the future. This Thanksgiving, perhaps it's time to set intentions for actions we can be thankful for in the future.
Thursday, November 5, 2015(1 comments)
The Power of Positive Music - Free Downloads in November!
November is Positive Music Month and you can get a free download of a fabulous positive music song by award-winning musicians every day of the month at emPowerma.com If you are a believer in the power of positive thinking/listening, you'll love this treasure trove! Series: Positive Music (7 Articles, 19929 views)
Friday, October 16, 2015(4 comments)
Wicked: DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz
The Democratic National Committee is shown to be neither democratic nor a committee, it's more like an oligarchy run by DNC Chair Debbie Wasserman Schultz. "I'll get you, my pretty, and your little debates, too!"
Wednesday, October 14, 2015(2 comments)
Sanders Rocks Vegas
Bernie Sanders rocked Vegas and broke records at the debate Tuesday night. His campaign reported that more than $1.3 million was raised in the first four hours after the debate began. They report that at the peak of the fundraising frenzy, there were 10.25 contributions per second. Series: Bernie Sanders (7 Articles, 12669 views)
Friday, October 2, 2015(2 comments)
Nautical oddity in Virginia Beach
A friend spotted this nautical oddity in the Broad Bay area around Virginia Beach yesterday. Neither of us are sailors, but we've both lived on the coast of Virginia for decades, and neither of us has ever seen anything like this. Trump's in town - could it be his? Series: Nautical & Maritime (5 Articles, 8574 views)
Saturday, September 26, 2015(6 comments)
Handicap Hack: Hearing Aids
If a hearing-impaired loved one has trouble keeping track of hearing aids, here's a fun and simple thing you can do to help. Series: Health & Wellbeing (7 Articles, 61461 views), My Dad (4 Articles, 6303 views)
Sunday, August 9, 2015(8 comments)
Bayou Corne Sinkhole Still Swallowing Louisiana 3 Years Later
It's the biggest ongoing disaster in the United States you have never heard of. When the Bayou Corne sinkhole was discovered on Aug 3, 2012, it spanned a couple of acres. A year later it covered more than 24 acres and was 750 feet deep, and continued to expand. The evacuation order has been in effect for over three years. Now the sinkhole is over 32 acres. And no one seems to have a clue about how to fix it. Series: Bayou Corne Sinkhole (21 Articles, 120567 views)
Thursday, July 23, 2015(1 comments)
Thom Hartmann: Bernie Sanders Could Be the Next FDR (video)
"For much of the 20th century - American presidents built on the policies of FDR's New Deal. That all changed with Reaganism in the 1980s. So which presidential candidate can bring about a new age of American progressivism?" In this enlightening video, Thom Hartmann clarifies some important points Series: Bernie Sanders (7 Articles, 12669 views)
Sunday, July 5, 2015(12 comments)
There's No Place Like Om -- the Dalai Lama, Dorothy and Me
A colorful exploration of the processes of creativity, art, and risk-taking on the path to joy: My deep interest in the Dalai Lama and the people of Tibet, and my understanding of their sense of displacement was enhanced during my own decade-long adventure in homelessness, and resulted in the concept for this unique work of fiber art, "No Place Like Om." Series: Art & Creativity (15 Articles, 29447 views), Dalai Lama (4 Articles, 5052 views), My Personal Journey (6 Articles, 6436 views) (View All Series)
Monday, June 22, 2015 Bernie Sanders on Bill Maher - Video
He's "Berning" up the campaign trail, closing the gap between himself and Hillary. At 612k, Sanders has more members on his Facebook page than any other United States Senator.
Bill Maher says. "You're a Rock Star now " you've already got Hillary Clinton talking like , I guess you are going to say that it's because you've got the right message. Series: Bernie Sanders (7 Articles, 12669 views)
Monday, June 22, 2015(13 comments)
"Berning" Up the Campaign Trail in Denver
A crowd of thousands - one of the largest of any presidential candidate so far in this campaign - showed up for at University of Denver's Hamilton Gymnasium on Saturday night. He spoke to an estimated 5,500 people in the gym, atrium and lacrosse field. Series: Bernie Sanders (7 Articles, 12669 views)
Saturday, June 20, 2015(52 comments)
Should the Charleston Shooter be Forgiven?
Relatives of those gunned down in Charleston, SC, earlier this week have offered forgiveness to the shooter, amidst a flurry of support as well as disbelief from people who do not think the shooter deserves forgiveness. But who really benefits from forgiveness? Series: Peace & Nonviolence (9 Articles, 13281 views)
Monday, May 11, 2015 Security Breech Horror at the Office Supply Store
A potentially devastating security breech during mundane photocopying puts a wealth of unintended information, including Social Security numbers, onto an unsuspecting customer's flash drive.
Sunday, May 3, 2015(21 comments)
A Woman's Place is on the Money
2020 is the centennial anniversary of the passage of the 19th Amendment, granting women the legal right to vote. It's time our legal tender sported the image of a woman, and there is a grassroots movement to put one on the $20 bill. Series: Feminine Rising (11 Articles, 26600 views), HERstory (7 Articles, 12584 views)
Thursday, April 30, 2015(8 comments)
A Path of Peace Encircles the Globe on World Labyrinth Day
Saturday, May 2, 2015 marks the seventh annual World Labyrinth Day. An opportunity to connect with others throughout the world through time zone related activities, it is sponsored by the Labyrinth Society, an international organization of labyrinth enthusiasts. TLS invites people around the globe to share in a symbolic walk to encircle the planet with peace. Series: Labyrinths (8 Articles, 28347 views)
Tuesday, March 31, 2015(45 comments)
My Friend Decided to Die Last Week
My longtime friend decided to die last week, on the heels of the Spring Equinox, the archetypal moment of renewal and new life. He sent out a Facebook farewell with an invitation to his memorial service, scheduled for a few days after he would "pull the plug." Series: Aaron Winborn (2 Articles, 5154 views)
Tuesday, February 24, 2015(6 comments)
Seduced by Quilts: An Album of Art-stitch-tic Inspiration
The needlearts have belonged mostly to the mothers who patch us up when we are broken and to the grandmothers who are the weavers of life. Quilting has been woven into the very soul of America, since scarcity of goods and thrifty spirits inspired women to craft warmth from scraps. Now quilts are more often made for artistic value, and this feminine craft has blossomed with passion into its own art form: a photographic album. Series: Quilting and Fiber Arts (8 Articles, 21709 views)
Saturday, February 21, 2015(8 comments)
Train Wrecks, the "Real McCoy" and Black History Month
Born to escaped slaves, Elijah McCoy was a black American inventer whose committment to quality, excellence and integrity gave rise, in the late 1800s, to the term, the Real McCoy. His remarkable path took him from Canada to Scotland to the U.S., directly into prejudice and out the other side. Series: Black HIstory Month (3 Articles, 5003 views)
Thursday, February 19, 2015(41 comments)
How the Bible Supports Socialism
Anyone with the remotest understanding of the foundations of Christianity knows that the Bible has plenty of allusions to Socialistic perspectives. When conversing with Bible-thumping fans of Sarah Palin and Rush Limbaugh, it can be useful to have a few of these quotations at your fingertips. Series: Spirituality & Religion (12 Articles, 33850 views)
Sunday, February 8, 2015(2 comments)
Confessions of a Moonwalker: Apollo 14 Astronaut Edgar Mitchell on Inner and Outer Space
On Feb. 9, 1971, the Apollo 14 Command Module splashed down in the South Pacific. It was a half-a-million mile round trip which included 9 hours on the surface of the moon for astronaut Edgar Mitchell. His odyssey resulted in an "equal and opposite" inner journey--on his return to Earth, Mitchell had a "samadhi" experience--a sense of profound oneness with the universe--which left him forever changed. Series: Interviews (14 Articles, 27849 views), Quantum Sciences (7 Articles, 34976 views)
Sunday, February 1, 2015(5 comments)
From Wharf Rats to Lords of the Docks: the Remarkable Story of Labor Leader Harry Bridges
When teenager and Australian merchant seaman Harry Bridges disembarked in San Francisco for a visit in 1919 he didn't know that he'd stay for a lifetime, grace the cover of Time magazine and change the course of American history! It took a British-born actor-screenwriter to shine a spotlight on an Aussie-born labor leader who changed the face of American unions. Series: Interviews (14 Articles, 27849 views)
Monday, January 26, 2015(23 comments)
Vermont High Schoolers Cut Fox "News" Down Over Ethics in Journalism
The Quantum Leap Exhibit Program at Mount Anthony Union High School in Bennington, VT took a good look at FOX "News" in contrast to the published Ethics of Journalism per the Society of Professional Journalists. They concluded that FOX "News" failed miserably at practicing journalism on every level, as evidenced in their outstanding video, "Vermont High Schoolers Just Destroy Fox News About The Ethics Of Journalism." (Video) Series: Journalism (2 Articles, 3424 views), Solutions Activism (2 Articles, 3807 views)
Friday, January 23, 2015(30 comments)
Solutions Journalism and OpEdNews
If you've been hanging out on OpEdNews for a while, maybe you've noticed that we've been moving toward a kinder, friendlier, more positive model. We've encouraged more civil communication in comments and we are also integrating the more positive coverage of current events, via the "Solutions Journalism" model. Series: Journalism (2 Articles, 3424 views), Solutions Activism (2 Articles, 3807 views)
Wednesday, December 24, 2014(2 comments)
Enchantment at Dusk: Bruce Munro's Poetry of Light
Visions of light can fill yearning souls in the darkest hours of winter. Entering British artist Bruce Munro's luminous fairyland is like walking into an alternate reality of enchantment. The brilliance of his large-scale light installations reawakens the joys of childhood playfulness while it inspires respect for his remarkable artistic and technical achievements. Some viewers gasp, others weep, all are touched. Series: Art & Creativity (15 Articles, 29447 views), Christmas/Yule Season (5 Articles, 5749 views)
Saturday, December 20, 2014(2 comments)
The "Force" is with You in SF Musician's Home Holiday Light Show
A music teacher at the Conservatory of Vocal and Instrumental Arts in Oakland, CA, has created a holiday light show at his home in the Bay area. Over 100,000 lights are synchronized to a medley of favorite Star Wars Tunes. Tom BetGeorge uses it as a way to fundraise for the poor and homeless. He uploaded his video of the extravaganza on Monday Dec. 15, and got over 2.5 million views by week's end. May the Force be with you. Series: Christmas/Yule Season (5 Articles, 5749 views)
Tuesday, December 9, 2014(5 comments)
Restore your faith in humanity in 4 minutes flat
Amidst a sea of police brutality and government corruption it's important to remember that the essential goodness of individual people always rises to the top, like cream.
Each day the Flixxy team looks through hundreds of new videos to pull out a few they think are the best. They promote these videos specifically to raise spirits and bring more sunshine into the lives of their viewers. And it's working.
Monday, December 1, 2014(36 comments)
How Thomas Paine Still Fights for the Soul of America
Ian Ruskin is an actor, playwright, and producer on a mission (in the words of Thomas Paine) "to begin the world over again." In his stunning performances, Ruskin shows us that Paine's ideas speak to a long & vital list of current issues. If he were alive today, this Founding Father would be in the front lines of the Occupy Movement. And through Ruskin, Paine's words continue to inspire from beyond the grave. Series: Interviews (14 Articles, 27849 views)
Thursday, November 27, 2014(23 comments)
The Thanksgiving Farce and What We Can Do About It
The actual Thanksgiving story goes something like this: illegal immigrants came to this country, pretended to be friendly to the inhabitants as long as it served their purposes, then killed, mutilated and subjugated the original citizens. We cannot change the past, but we can change the effect it has on the future. This Thanksgiving, perhaps it's time to set intentions for actions we can be thankful for in the future. Series: Holiday Insights (4 Articles, 5140 views)
Monday, November 10, 2014(1 comments)
Veterans Day Freebies for Vets
As in past years, restaurants, retailers and other businesses are offering free deals to vets on Veteran's Day, Nov 11, 2014.
In most cases, vets must present proof of military service such as valid military ID or honorable discharge card, or be in uniform. Some offers are for the veteran only, and others include family.
Here is a list! Series: Veterans (5 Articles, 11636 views)
Saturday, November 1, 2014(4 comments)
Enjoy Free Daily Downloads During November, Positive Music Month
November is Positive Music Month and you can get a free download of one (or sometimes two) fabulous positive music songs by award-winning musicians every day of the month at EmPowerma.com
If you are a believer in the power of positive thinking/listening, you'll love this treasure trove! Series: Positive Music (7 Articles, 19929 views), Music (12 Articles, 27238 views)
Friday, October 31, 2014(50 comments)
Herbal Secrets from the Green Witch of NY
Herbalist and educator, Robin Rose Bennett is the author of two newly published books: "The Gift of Healing Herbs" as well as "Healing Magic: A Green Witch Guidebook to Conscious Living" (10th Anniv. Ed.) Herself a vibrant product of plant-based healing, she weaves together herbal wisdom, anecdotal stories and spiritual insights in her books & in this interview. Series: Green Living (8 Articles, 23591 views), Health & Wellbeing (7 Articles, 61461 views)
Thursday, October 23, 2014 Rick Weiland, S. Dakota's "Everywhere Man" is Singing His Way to the Senate
Rick Weiland, 56, has been visiting every city in S. Dakota in his mini-van since winning the Democratic nomination for the US Senate. Jim Dean, Chair of Democracy for America calls Weiland "an insurgent Democrat whose bolt-from-the-blue campaign for U.S. Senate is now the hottest race in the country and could be the tipping point that saves the Senate from GOP control." Even MSNBC's Rachel Maddow is talking about Weiland.
Saturday, October 11, 2014 #GoFundMe vs #DontFundHate: How Creative, Peaceful Protest Can Work
Shortly after Wilson killed Brown, two GoFundMe campaigns sprang up and in less than a month over $400,000 was raised for Wilson--more than the President makes in a year. And comments were considered highly racist and inflammatory. GoFundMe got their "fair" share. They automatically deduct a 5% transaction fee from each donation a user receives. According to calculations, GoFundMe collected over $20,000 from the campaign. Series: Peace & Nonviolence (9 Articles, 13281 views)
Wednesday, October 8, 2014(14 comments)
Election Looms for Bolivia's Incumbent Evo Morales
Democratic Socialist, Bolivian incumbent President Juan Evo Morales Ayma, is expected to win the election on Sunday, Oct. 12.
A former "cocalero" (coca farmer and activist), and continuing football (soccer) enthusiast, he has served as president of Bolivia since 2006 and has maintained close friendships with Cuba's Fidel Castro and Venezuela's Hugo Chavez. Series: Evo Morales (3 Articles, 13999 views)
Friday, September 26, 2014(3 comments)
Minnesota Vikings' New Stadium Will Kill Birds
The Minnesota Vikings' new stadium could kill thousands of migratory birds unless the stadium's builders take immediate action to incorporate bird safe measures, according to David Yarnold, President and CEO of the National Audubon Society.
Wednesday, September 24, 2014 National Public Lands Day Sept. 27: A Volunteer Opportunity
Sept. 27 is National Public Lands Day, an annual volunteer event hosted by the National Environmental Education Foundation, and which spotlights the environment and America's natural beauty. Entrance fees will be waived at many sites for both visitors and volunteers, who may also earn a fee-free day coupon that can be used for another visit at a national park during the next year.
Saturday, August 23, 2014(8 comments)
Aug. 24, 1814: The White House Ablaze, A True-Blue Matriot and a Red Dress
Two hundred years ago, on August 24, 1814, the British Army occupied Washington, D.C. and set fire to the White House and the Capitol. President James Madison narrowly avoided capture, and First Lady Dolley Madison made a valiant escape from the White House. Series: HERstory (7 Articles, 12584 views), Sheros (20 Articles, 32161 views)
Friday, August 22, 2014(15 comments)
Janet McKenzie: Sacred Art and the Feminine Spirit
Janet McKenzie's controversial painting, "Jesus of the People" was the first place winner of the National Catholic Reporter's global competition to identify an image of Jesus for the New Millennium. It has generated "shouts of praise and threats of death,", including hate mail and a demonstration by the infamous Westboro Baptist Church. The painting is currently on exhibit in the Vermont Festival of the Arts. Series: Interviews (14 Articles, 27849 views), Feminine Rising (11 Articles, 26600 views), Art & Creativity (15 Articles, 29447 views) (View All Series)
Friday, August 15, 2014(29 comments)
Turning 60: Desperately Seeking Something
The last thing I remember, Abbie Hoffman was telling me not to trust anyone over 30. Now, not only am I over 30 - WAY over - but all my kids are over 30. So when the big 60th birthday stared me down, I knew I had to do something before I became tragically and terminally unhip. Series: My Personal Journey (6 Articles, 6436 views), Rites of Passage (2 Articles, 3786 views)
Monday, August 4, 2014(11 comments)
Gazing on Gaza
"Gaza is the world's largest open-air prison. Even calling the action against Palestinians in Gaza a war seems lacking in description. A war implies some equality in combat. What is happening in Gaza is a massacre by one of the world's most powerful armies, abetted by the silence of western nations." - Dennis Kucinich Series: Dennis Kucinich (19 Articles, 28957 views)
Sunday, August 3, 2014 Relentless Two-Year-Old Sinkhole Still Swallowing the Bayou
August 3rd marks the 2-year anniversary of the discovery of the now-famous Bayou Corne sinkhole in Louisiana, the result of a Texas Brine salt dome failure. Ongoing work on the sinkhole gets halted regularly during increased levels of seismic activity. More than 350 people have been forced out of their homes since August 2012. The sinkhole continues to enlarge as it swallows more and more of the bayou environs. Series: Bayou Corne Sinkhole (21 Articles, 120567 views)