Musings and Reviews of Metaphysical, New Age and Meaningful Writings

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Become Who You Truly Are: YOU CAN TRANSFORM YOUR LIFE #BookReview and #AuthorInterview


You Can Transform Full Cover FINALrevWhat is your plan for transforming 2018 into your best year ever? Have you thought about it? Do you have a plan?

Imagine if you could have a year of inspiration mapped out for you. Well, Darity Wesley, a Modern Day Oracle™, has done just that for you. You Can Transform Your Life was written as a guide to support your personal and spiritual growth over the course of 52 weeks… so it’s a perfect time to start using it at the beginning of a new year. Of course, you can start at any time, go at your own pace, or even open the book at random for an Oracle message to answer a question on your mind in the moment.

The first Oracle message relates to Creating a New Way of Life, with the affirmation mantra: “I AM releasing the old so I can build the new…And so it is!!!” There’s also a circle for you to draw your goal or intention as a simple symbol.

Each Oracle message is followed by space for you to answer four questions of self-inquiry – to explore what the message means to you, to create your own personal mantra, to plan how to integrate the message into your life, and to direct your attention to any messages from your own inner voice.

The book’s design is so well thought out – I found that answering the questions and using this space to journal my emotions and thoughts on the Oracle message made it so much more powerful for me than just reading the message. This personal writing is therapeutic, helping you let go of the things that are holding you down, inviting you to freely express how you feel – which will make you feel better.

Spinx Darity with copyright

Love and Trust, my dear ones … Love and Trust! ~ Darity Wesley, Modern Day Oracle™

At the end of the 52 Oracle messages, there is a guided Personal Transformation Journal template that takes you even further, offering inspirational prompts for your writing. I think you will be amazed at how far you’ve come on your personal journey by the time you reach the last journal page, which prompts, “Free yourself from what is holding you back! Be who you truly are!”

For those seeking to go even further on their journey of transformation, Darity Wesley has designed a Companion Workbook for You Can Transform Your Life, that provides more in-depth questions for each of the 52 Oracle messages, bonus exercises to help increase intuition, spiritual strength and inner balance by exploring such topics as Tuning In, Gratitude, and Forgiveness, as well as practical advice on how to apply these tools of transformation to all areas of your life. It will be available on December 26.

What a great way to start 2018 with one or both of these books in hand or gifted to others!

Many thanks to author Darity Wesley for answering my many questions about her work here…

Can you explain what Oracle messages are?

I feel that the Oracle messages are communications written to stimulate and encourage thoughts and feelings that will support and assist us in our personal and spiritual development. I think of the Oracle messages as signposts. They point the way for our own consciousness, our own Soul self to discover, guide and change our behavior, our way of thinking, our way of feeling. Everything is possible and Oracle messages support whatever resonates with the heart of its reader.

What inspired you to become an “Oracle?”

In the late 1980s early 1990s I enjoyed a book by Shakti Gawain entitled Reflections in the Light. This book contained inspirational messages for every day of the calendar year. It felt good to think about or contemplate whatever she had written for that day. I liked it very much and thought it may be of value to others.

In 2006, I heard of the social media site called MySpace which was gaining in popularity in the tech industry I was working in. I put up a profile on MySpace and began posting what I called ~The Daily Oracle~: Inspirational messages by Shakti Gawain, Louise Hay, Eckhart Tolle, Ram Dass and many others. I allowed my spirit to be my guide in picking what to post for each day. At some point in the postings, someone asked if they could receive the messages by email and I said “Sure” and began the email subscription service. I stopped posting on MySpace somewhere along the way but continued with the email subscription service sending the messages of others.

In August of 2012, my treasured friend of many years, Cristina Smith, suggested I might like to write the Oracle messages from my own spirit as opposed to using the work of others. I was flabbergasted and immediately rejected the idea that I do that on my own. “Who, me?”

That “suggestion” was a seed that grew and blossomed, so I faced my fears and decided to do exactly that. Well, to at least give it a try! So, on September 5, 2012, I launched Oracles from the Spirit of Darity. While that space was always there, within me, it was my friend Cristina who inspired me to become a Modern Day Oracle™.

How do you access these messages or divinations?

Having been on the path of self-discovery and inquiry for over 50 years, I have experienced much support from my angels, guides and Spirit. Because I have “tuned in” for so long and “turned up the volume,” I feel I recognize and, therefore, trust, the voice within me. So what I do is just tap into that place where I hear Spirit and say “What?” “What are the energies and directions for …?” I then write or type the words or directions that come through.

How can the reader best use your Oracle messages?

Each Oracle message focuses on some area of self and/or spiritual discovery. Since inner work is very personal, the Oracle message will simply help the reader’s own intuition look at what they need to look at in that area or what they can focus on as a tool, a process, a step to work on, integrate or a practice to include in their life to support them along the way. As I said earlier, Oracle messages stimulate thoughts and feelings for us to investigate or assimilate or even relegate to another time if it causes us any resistance when we are reading it.

That is what the companion workbook: You Can Transform Your Life – Go Deeper (available on Amazon on December 26) will add to the process. It is intended to help us navigate these changing times and facilitate our journey to becoming our True Authentic Selves.

What are the benefits of using the affirmation mantras?

Affirmation mantras are the seeds of our intentions. We use them to support us. The main benefit of an affirmation mantra is its ability to bypass the “monkey mind,” the “ego,” the “personality” … that part of ourselves that is “rational” and “controlling” and caught up in the illusion of the way it really is. That part of us which will surely tell us why it won’t work or why it is something other than “love and trust,” for instance, or “I firmly stand in my determination to …” or “I am kind to others and myself.”

Another benefit of affirmation mantras is their support of the transformational energies of self and spiritual discoveries. They help us access higher levels of awareness. No matter how you use them, affirmation mantras have the ability to bring the seed of your intention into full bloom to support what it is you are wanting to do, be or have.

What are the different ways readers can use your book?

A reader can use the Oracle messages in the book however they feel drawn to use them. The book, and its companion workbook, is structured as a 52-week program beginning any time you want, however, they can be used and applied randomly, you can skip around, and let your very own spirit be the guide. Mix and match or go in order. It is all up to the reader.

You write of the New Reality – can you explain that and offer an example of that in action?

The New Reality is a term that comes up a lot in the Oracle messages. Quite simply, it is a shift in focus. This shift is from an external focus, which has been the way of life on this Planet for a very long time, to an internal focus that is a new way of life. The New Reality is a focus on an internal, higher level of consciousness. That “higher level of consciousness” may be your own creative sovereignty or that of a higher power or energy or just All That Is, the Universe, God, depending on your particular belief structure. When we step into consciously allowing that creative power to move through us, rather than resist it or not acknowledge it, we find such things as fulfillment, balance, happiness. What you need, what you want, comes from within, not “out there.”

As more and more of us step into the New Reality, as often as we can, we will feel there is more to be discovered about ourselves and our world. That can bring a calm joyousness and excitement to our lives.

An example of that would be my personal experience when I came to the realization that nothing “out there” was really responsible for my happiness. Not money, not things, not relationships. No. Nothing outside of me. I realized I was responsible for making me happy. I am the creator of my own reality and I choose, from inside, my happiness. That is stepping, a wee step for sure, into the New Reality.

What brought you to the decision you say you made, “to wear my heart on my sleeve and the world can just get over it?”

I will never forget the experience so many, many years ago. I was 33 years old. At that time I was a person who wanted everyone to love her. Mostly because I felt so unlovable. I had no real sense of myself. My need for love and approval was so great that I was like a chameleon. I had no opinions of my own. I would assume the likes and dislikes of whomever I was with. I was a Republican with Republicans and a Democrat with Democrats. I went along with whatever was happening. God forbid I would say what I thought or felt in a social setting.

Having been exploring myself and growing spiritually for many years prior to this, I was not totally devoid of self-inquiry, self-discovery and spiritual growth and so this was, evidentially, my next step.

At that time in my Buddha year, 33, I had a life changing experience at the foot of Mt. Shasta in California. Part of that life changing experience was “I am going to wear my heart on my sleeve, allow myself to be vulnerable, people will like me or not like me but they will like me or not like me as I am.” No more pretending, no more affectation, no more not saying what I think or feel. Nope! I began to step more and more into my True Authentic Self.

What would you most like readers to take away from this book?

Whether someone desires a complete life makeover or just wants to learn new ways to feel more in harmony with themselves and their world, this book and the companion Workbook, provide processes, tools and practices to take your life to a new level. Self-discovery and self-awareness are critical tools for these changing times and absolutely support our evolution as conscious beings.

As we evolve as conscious beings, we not only change ourselves, we change the lives of those around us and as that change energy moves out to world, it changes the world. That is my desire for my readers. To grow and change. To feel better, to feel more alive, to feel more at peace with themselves and all that is going on in the world. To become more self aware and to grow spiritually. To become more and more who you really are.

How can one subscribe to your Modern Day Oracle™ messages?

If someone would like to subscribe to ~The Weekly Oracle~™ they can email me at Darity@DarityWesley.com. Simply put “Subscribe” in the Subject Line or go to our website www.DarityWesley.com and subscribe there.

You Can Transform Your Life is available now on Amazon, and the You Can Transform Your Life – Go Deeper Workbook will be available on December 26.

Namaste!

Becca Chopra, author of The Chakra DiariesChakra SecretsBalance Your Chakras-Balance Your Lifeand The Chakra Energy Diet
www.theChakras.org

The Chakra Blog

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Mind and Soul Satisfying Puzzles: The Word Search Sage, Yoga for the Brain #BookReview and #AuthorInterview


Screen Shot 2017-11-17 at 10.32.21 AMThe Word Search Sage is the second book in the series of word puzzles, known as Yoga for the Brain, that offer a creative, fun, meditative respite from the busy chatter of the mind… while flexing your brain.

You can read my review of The Word Search Oracle, which won the 2017 Pinnacle Book Achievement Award, and download a sample puzzle here.

The Word Search Sage takes you a little deeper into your thoughts and spirit, as the solutions to these word puzzles are called Meta-Thoughts, providing insights and deep wisdom.

I like to open the pages at random, and undoubtedly, Cristina Smith’s introductory comments on the topic of the puzzle and mystic Ingrid Coffin’s Meta-Thoughts are always relevant to my life at that moment in time. In fact, each word in each of the clever puzzles put together by Rick Smith relate to the Meta-Thought and help you discover your own truth, your own purpose in life.

For example, the puzzle on Love is introduced with a note that includes:

“Affirm your love for yourself. Shed all of the self-negatives that life has draped over you. When we fear criticism, we are not free to be ourselves. If we feel less than, our lives reflect that.”

The Love puzzle on page 30 is a little harder than those in the beginning of the book. You’ll see that after you’ve found all the applicable words in the puzzle, the letters remaining make up this Meta-Thought:

“Be thankful for being yourself.”

These puzzles sound magical and mystical and they are. I’m amazed at how they are both relaxing and good exercise for the mind, while providing inspiration and profound introspection for the soul.

MT Puzzle
Strewn throughout the book are also beautiful photos with words of wisdom from Ingrid Coffin, like the one above, “You are the finest puzzle in your life…. Enjoy putting yourself together.”

Enjoy this book whenever you need a little time to yourself, a break from work, to keep entertained while waiting for someone or something, or as a daily ritual to give you food for thought and inspiration.

INTERVIEW with Ingrid Coffin, author of the inspirational Meta-Thoughts you reach at the end of each puzzle in The Word Search Sage

The solutions to the word searches in these puzzles are called Meta-Thoughts. Can you explain that term?

Meta-Thoughts are broader, more abstract thoughts that address life from a higher level than the thoughts we might have about what to have for lunch.  They are intended to be a bit cheeky.  Kind of like a sassy Jiminy Cricket reminding us that we create our own world and that much of what we create begins with our thoughts.

Where do you get the inspiration for the Meta-Thoughts?

I communicate a lot and hear myself saying Meta-Thoughts almost every day while working with other people. The trick is to catch them before they float away. I’m finally getting pretty good at that after more than 15 years of practice.

How can the reader best use these Meta-Thoughts?

I use Meta-Thoughts in a variety of ways.  Often I write them in my journal. Sometimes I just print them from my computer and post them in strategic places in my home and office. Of course, they are also there every Monday waiting for me on my phone.  The secret is to place them as a constant reminder of what I am working on.

For instance, if I am starting a new venture, I might post “First Feet. Then Wings” to encourage myself to start at the beginning and carefully navigate my way to successful completion.  Or I might choose “Have I left myself out of my schedule?” to remind me of my priorities.

The way you can use them is limited only by your imagination.

What do you think is the most important benefit of the Yoga for the Brain puzzle books?

Keeping your brain sharp and active is crucial to enjoying a long life.

Exercising the mind is the way to do that, and Yoga for the Brain provides the exercise it needs.

Personally, I use the word puzzles to help me relax at night and get to sleep, to keep me occupied in waiting rooms and on airplanes and just generally to enjoy a pause that refreshes.

Cristina Smith, author of The Word Search Sage, describes you as a “mystic.” What does the description mean to you?

Everyone is part mystical and part magical. The right-brained people are more mystical. The left-brained more magical. I am a right-brained, mystical person, which means I create the image of the result I desire in my own imagination, using my intuition as a drawing board.

Fortunately, I have been trained to work magically as well as mystically. I am able to take the vision from within my imagination and craft it in the physical world. In my opinion, a cooperative relationship between mystical and magical is what works best for everyone in all aspects of life. This is what I teach to those who work with me.

How can readers learn more about Meta-Thoughts?

It’s easy to subscribe to my weekly Meta-Thoughts.  Just go to http://www.Meta-Thoughts.com and provide your name and email address.

What other ways can readers connect with you and learn about your work?

In addition to my love of Meta-Thoughts and The Word Search Sage, I am an evolutionary astrologer, a teacher in the western esoteric tradition and the founding director of Blue Sky Ranch in Lakeside, California.  More information is available at http://www.ingridcoffin.com.

The Word Search Sage and The Word Search Oracle are both available on Amazon.

Namaste!

Becca Chopra, author of The Chakra DiariesChakra SecretsBalance Your Chakras-Balance Your Lifeand The Chakra Energy Diet
www.theChakras.org

The Chakra Blog

 

Surviving Undiagnosed Illness – A Few Minor Adjustments #BookReview and #AuthorInterview


A Few Minor Adjustments front coverA Few Minor Adjustments is the tongue-in-cheek title of Cherie Kephart’s memoir of surviving undiagnosed illness. Her beautifully written yet brutally honest story starts with her time as a young Peace Corps volunteer in a remote village of Zambia where she has to adjust to absolutely no sanitation (she’s sent there to help build community latrines) and where she contracts malaria as well as a variety of grotesque ailments.

After recovering back home in California, her adventurous spirit and desire to know more of the world and its people take her to graduate studies in New Zealand. Once back home in San Diego, she works as a technical writer until a severe, mysterious illness lays her at the door of death.

Her persistent health challenges (ranging from unrelenting neck pain, seizures and tachychardia) led to years of suffering, during which her symptoms were continually undiagnosed by medical doctors and alternative healers who were sometimes competent, sometimes careless, sometimes absurd, and always baffled.

She was cared for by faithful friends and a mother who showed her unconditional love and kept her from simply giving up and ending her life – although she came close. But, having lost so many people in her life at a young age, she wrote:

“I had to find a way to alleviate my mental anguish, and live, if not for me, for all of my friends who were no longer able to experience the wonders of this world.”

A Few Minor Adjustments is an astonishing story of how many of our modern diseases (such as chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, Epstein-Barr virus and Lyme disease) can easily go undiagnosed or disregarded.

Kephart’s account of her own incredible journey to find life-saving answers should inspire anyone to continue to fight on all levels – physical, mental and spiritual – to heal.

Here, Cherie Kephart answers questions about A Few Minor Adjustments

What transpired during your time in Africa, and how has your experience as a traveler influenced your personal journey on the road to better health?

When I traveled, I was forced to open my mind, to pay attention, and to be adventurous. I had to learn to be comfortable with my fear of the unknown. Living in Zambia taught me that. I stayed with a local Zambian family, ate dishes such as boiled millet and fried-caterpillars. I built makeshift wells and latrines near a crocodile-infested river close to the border of politically unstable Zaire. Each day was an adventure, especially when it came to my health. I had giardia, dysentery, a putzi fly infection resulting in maggots in my butt, and almost died from an uncommon case of malaria. Almost dying in Africa was a pivotal point for me. I realized I needed a fierce will to live if I was going to survive. Now all these years later, that has never changed. It’s the one constant that has kept me going.

After you returned to the United States from graduate school, you had to cope for several years with dramatic, mysterious health issues. What were some of the high and low points of that time when you were first struggling to figure out what might be causing your symptoms?

The worst part was the not knowing why I was so sick, if I would ever heal, or if I was going to die. Every day I woke with the same questions, and each night I went to bed with no answers. It was terrifying. And it went on for years. I saw hundreds of doctors, healers, and therapists: rheumatologists, cardiologists, integrative medicine specialists, neurologists, acupuncturists, naturopaths, and eccentric healers such as a Russian ex-physicist who waved fertile chicken-eggs over my chest to try to reset the rhythm of my heart.

I came close to committing suicide. But that’s the miraculous part. We don’t realize what we are capable of until we are faced with enormous challenges. I learned to respect my inner strength, to know how much I could endure and how much I could rise above. I kept finding ways to change myself and my situation, like changing my attitude, changing the foods I ate, trying new therapies and treatments, including an exploratory heart procedure. I stayed open and stopped looking back. What a magnificent lesson.

There are many individuals, including medical personnel, spiritual healers, therapists, family members and friends, who helped you along the way. What impact did these people have on your attempts to both live with and diagnose your illness?

That was one of the most beautiful gifts I’ve ever been given; to see how much people cared and feel their compassion and love. My family and friends never gave up on me. That kept me strong. Without them, I wouldn’t be here. I’m certain of that, especially with regard to my mother and my grandfather. Both of them helped me financially, since I lost the ability to work. They were also there for me emotionally. My boyfriend Alex, the one I dedicated the book to, was amazing. He went to doctor appointments, did research on my health, cared for me while I was bedridden and unable to walk unassisted. I will never forget it. People often tell me how strong I am. I always reply the same way, “I’m only as strong as my support system.” As horrendous as my physical health was, I always had love.

During the course of documenting what was happening with your health, you decided to turn your personal story into an inspirational memoir. What do you find the most fascinating about the memoir genre, and how has writing this book helped with your own healing?

I’ve always been fascinated with memoirs. Reading a memoir, I get to dive deep into someone else’s world, to understand their most intimate struggles and triumphs. I got to know them. It’s like I get to live another life for a little while. I also feel that memoirs connect us, bridging the gaps between different aspects of our humanity.

Writing a memoir is deeply cathartic. I believe we write a memoir twice. The first time we write it, we write it for ourselves. We write to release emotions and energy surrounding everything we have endured. Then, when it is at the point where we feel clarity around it, we re-write and fine tune it to make it accessible and ready to release to the world. We prepare the story in such a way that enables people to easily come along our inner and outer journeys and gain insights from them. Ernest Hemingway said it best, “Write hard and clear about what hurts.” That’s what I did.

It’s difficult to explain how writing this memoir contributed to my healing. I certainly don’t think it made the process go any faster. But it made me go deeper into the crevices of pain where I didn’t necessarily want to go. So the healing I’ve experienced is more profound and lasting.

What would you like readers to remember most about your story?

We all have pain and suffering, but we all have joy and beauty. It’s really about perspective and choosing each day to show up in a positive way and to have more compassion for each other, and for ourselves. If we don’t understand something, like an undiagnosed illness, then it is our duty as human beings not to turn away, or reject the unknown, but offer compassion, even if it is something we don’t understand. Actually, especially if it’s something we don’t understand.

You’ve often said that you would like to give a voice to those who are also struggling with an undiagnosed illness. What would you say to those who are on a similar path as yours?

If I could survive all that I have, and it’s a lot for one person to endure, then anyone else can, too. Even when we feel like ending it all, we have to find a reason to live for just one more sunrise and then one more sunset. Because we never know what is around the corner. There were so many times I was ready to end it all. I was barely alive. Now, I look back, and I’m so glad I didn’t give up. As long as we have the will to live, you can heal.

Are you working on a new book and, if so, what can you tell us about it?

Absolutely! My next projects are companion books to the memoir: The Healing 100 and The Symptoms 100. The Healing 100 is the top one-hundred things I did to heal, and The Symptoms 100 is the top 100 symptoms I had and what helped me. I also have a collection of poetry, Poetry of Peace, which chronicles four stages of life, Seeing the World, Through Darkness, Into the Light, and With Peace. It’s really about the emotional and spiritual aspects of healing. Lastly, I am creating a cookbook filled with allergy-free recipes: The Cookbook for People Who Can’t Eat Anything. I’m excited about these projects since the goal is to provide insight, a touch of humor, and ideas on ways to heal. I believe people can learn from my experiences, be inspired, and have some tools for their own healing journey.

For more information on the author, see www.CherieKephart.com.

A Few Minor Adjustments is available on Amazon in Kindle, paperback and hardcover.

Namaste!

Becca Chopra, author of The Chakra DiariesChakra SecretsBalance Your Chakras-Balance Your Lifeand The Chakra Energy Diet
www.theChakras.org

The Chakra Blog

 

 

 

 

 

Magic Realized: #BookReview of Poems on the Human Spirit and #AuthorInterview with Louis Alan Swartz


Screen Shot 2017-09-05 at 7.50.09 AMHow can a book of poetry bring magic into your life? Louis Alan Swartz has done this, writing of life and death in a way that stirs your soul and makes your heart sing in Magic Realized and Other Poems on the Human Spirit.

Reading this volume from beginning to end, you feel like you’ve had a glimpse of a blessed life, as the author touches on Love and Marriage; Children; Grandmothers, Grandfathers, Mothers and Fathers; Human Sanctity; Aesthetics; Ideas, Images, and Places; and Death, the Spirit and Immortality.

Each section has an intriguing note under the title. For instance, Love and Marriage is subtitled, “I intend to make you ridiculously happy.” Under the section title Ideas, Images, and Places, are the words: “Living is the finest art.”

I found all of the poems uplifting, even when I skipped ahead to read about Death, as I mourned the loss of a dear friend. In Eulogy, I resonated with his words: “I do not mourn a loss. I protest an interruption.”

All of the poems gave me another way to look at things, “An idea of what living could be. A small inkling of infinity.” ~ from Claire at the Piano

The poems in Magic Realized are accessible, their meaning, their message, instantly clear and full of color and feeling. The author even provides definitions of words at the end of some poems to make sure they are not misconstrued. And the beautiful poetry is embellished with beautiful illustrations throughout the book by Diane Woods.

Here, Louis Alan Swartz answers my questions about Magic Realized:

What message would you like readers to take away from this book?

My overall intention in writing is to draw out the magnificence in individuals. It is my firm certainty that each person is an immortal spiritual being. I also believe that each human is possessed of abilities much greater than they have been permitted to believe. Their ability to perceive, understand, create, love, help, know and do good is for each one beyond our current earth imaginations. There is a Hindu myth about the god, Shiva and the goddess, Maya. In short, they had a loving relationship for 9000 years and then they ran into some trouble and things got a bit rocky. First of all, I believe that story is true and second of all, I believe that a “regular human being” here on this earth is capable of a love of that duration and magnitude. I won’t go into all the other legends and myths. Suffice it to say, it is very real to me that these things really did happen and that we can return to that level of intensity of life.

What I want the reader to take away from this book is that he is wiser, kinder, more loving, more creative, more useful and more beautiful than he ever imagined. I want to help him regain his capacity for amazement, astonishment and awe. My purpose in writing this book was to speak to the miracle each person reading it is.

Is your poetry based on your own life experiences?

Definitely. I have travelled widely to South America, Europe, The Middle East, Africa, India and back and forth across the U.S. countless times. I saw many things. I learned many things. I know that each individual, living being has great value because I observed them at their work and lives. I listened to them. I eagerly heard their stories. I witnessed their suffering and their elation. I tried to save a young boy from dying for no reason along the Nile in South Sudan. I saw a food riot in India. I ate with the farmers in Madhya Pradesh in India. I told them about the miracles of America. They brought a child to me and asked me to cure her of polio. I could not.

I have been married for 30 years. I have a joyous marriage. My children are walking miracles. It is all there in the writing.

Why did you select the title – Magic Realized?

It is my belief that there is vast magic in each individual. By magic I mean able to create things not explained by nature, even able to create miracles. I am talking about the outrageous expression of genius. I do not believe this is limited to a gifted few but that each person walking this earth has these abilities inherently. I use both definitions of realized in the title. The first one is to become aware of. I want them to become aware of their own personal magic, such as He realized he could sing. The second meaning is to accomplish or achieve as in He realized his goal to be a concert

pianist. I am looking to accomplish both meanings in the reader. I want him to become aware of his personal magic. Then I want him to accomplish magical things in his life. Thus – Magic Realized.

Why do you think people these days need to hear that “You matter.”?

I think that in the main people have lost belief in themselves. I found this by listening to people. I have been told too many times to count things like “I used to have a dream but I lost it and it’s too late now.” That is plain not true! And it pisses me off. They might as well tell me that they are dead and would I please close the coffin. Each individual on this earth does matter! You cannot tell them that too much. My tenth grade English teacher, Miss Helen Hilliard, got up in front of the class with a paper I had written and said, “This kid can write.” That changed my life forever.

Why did you select poetry as your means of expression?

I believe poetry is a concentrated, fine language with which, if you make yourself very understandable, you can communicate directly to the spiritual being.

Where do you get your inspiration?

I get it by looking and listening. I look at wild flowers like the bright yellow California Poppy or the blue Mountain Lilac. I look at the Maple trees and Birch trees in the New England Fall. I listen to the old man from Italy in the restaurant telling me about the Second World War as if was yesterday. I devour what has been said and written whether it’s good or bad. I do not wait for inspiration. I go find it and eat it up.

How would you recommend someone read your poetry?

It doesn’t matter to me in which sequence they read my books. Sometimes they may have need of a poem about love or loss or death or immortality. I am thrilled if they find the one that helps them. It is important to me that they understand the words in the poems. I recommend having a dictionary at your side and using it.

Can we expect a Volume 3 of your Magic poetry?

Yes, there is a Volume III in the works. I am well into it and very excited about it. It goes deeper down into the themes of the first 2 volumes.

Do you have a favorite writer or poet who has influenced you?

The poet I most admire is Rainer Maria Rilke, a German poet who lived at the end of the 19th Century, beginning of the 20th Century. My favorite work by him is The Duino Elegies. It was from this book that I got my first inkling that a spiritual world existed. By the way, the best translation I have read is by Stephen Spender and J. B. Leishman.

What advice do you offer to aspiring poets?

Write! Write a hell of a lot! Don’t worry if it’s good or bad to begin with. Just write, write tens of thousands of words, even 100,000 and more. Read, live, see, hear. If you’re going to be a poet read all kinds of poetry. See what you like, what you understand and most importantly what moves you. Listen to the people, children, old people, people of all ages.

What I feel is most important is to make your poetry very understandable. It is my personal viewpoint that cryptic, obscure, vague and esoteric poetry is garbage and has given poetry a bad name and turned people off to it. MAKE YOURSELF UNDERSTOOD!

Magic Realized and Swartz’ s first volume of poetry, Constructed of Magic and Other Poems on the Immortality of the Human Spirit, are both available on Amazon.com in Kindle and paperback.

Namaste!

Becca Chopra, author of The Chakra DiariesChakra SecretsBalance Your Chakras-Balance Your Lifeand The Chakra Energy Diet
www.theChakras.org

The Chakra Blog

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Learn to Thrive – Joyful Transformation #BookReview and #AuthorInterview


Screen Shot 2017-09-12 at 11.39.46 AMAre you living the life that you truly want? We ALL need to improve certain areas of our lives, but HOW? In Joyful Transformation, Debra Meehl, D.D., and Kristin Smith, L.C., help you figure out what you want to do differently and how to more easily make that happen.

The 22 Keys to Reclaiming Your Authenticity contains offer a holistic, positive approach, focusing on what you want, not on what you don’t want.

The book begins with a heart-wrenching introduction in which Debra Meehl takes you through her own life experiences after her husband began exhibiting bi-polar behavior and their study of Distress Tolerance and Dialectical Behavioral Therapy:

“…to move out of suffering and into joy. Together we were going to be developing our own emotional maturity and our ability as both a couple and as individuals to tolerate distressful events, people and things in our lives with some measure of grace.”

The Keys to reaching joy begin with mindfulness of the self-limiting, critical consciousness that winds its way through our thoughts, becoming aware of the power of such thoughts and replacing them with loving, peaceful, empowering affirmations and mantras. The author provides a total of 22 tools to work with to grow smarter and build a more authentic existence. These range from profound advice on finding your life’s purpose, learning to meditate and including spirituality in your life, to common-sense recommendations on sleeping, exercise and nutrition.

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The book includes exercises and a place to journal at the end of each chapter to help you see what “story are you living” that may be keeping you from the life you want. The authors invite you to take an inner adventure, a step-by-step journey of discovery and re-envisioning of your story and the meaning you give to events in your life. Joyful Transformation is a true guide to global healing and transformation, one individual, one reader, at a time.

AUTHOR INTERVIEW WITH DEBRA MEEHL:

What do you hope readers take away from Joyful Transformation?

I want people to really understand that change isn’t “hard” as we’re traditionally taught, and that with simple strategies like those outlined in the book it can become much more comfortable than what most people believe or expect.

What inspired you to write this book?

To put it simply, life.

How would you recommend this book be best used?

Exactly as it is written. Joyful Transformation was designed to be a road map for your own journey of change. A road map doesn’t tell you where to stop or which route is best. It shows you ALL of the stops and routes, but leaves the final decision up to you, based on your intention for the trip. Joyful Transformation is the same way. It’s meant to give you a glimpse – a little taste – of all the things you CAN do to make changing your life more comfortable and effective. But in the end, you choose what works best for you based on your EXPERIENCE with the text.

 Why do you think we as a society generally have such low tolerance for distress?

Personally, I think the reason is really two-fold. Neurologically we, as mammals, are hard-wired to avoid distressing situations. Because, as a general rule, situations that cause distress are perilous to our health and wellbeing. Our distaste and intolerance for distress is a biologically programmed mechanism that developed to help us survive.

In modern society, that urge still exists, but it serves a slightly different function. We no longer have the same need to struggle for basic survival. Now we struggle for emotional and psychological preservation. People will do almost anything to not feel misery, suffering, or other unpleasant sensations. We are driven by neurological and biological chemistry to do whatever we can – as quickly and effectively as possible – to feel better. People know that. And somewhere along the way, figured out how to exploit it. So, whether it be for personal comfort or for corporate gain, we have created a society that plays into those basic urges in a way that nature never intended.

Now we live in a society of instant gratification where instead of dealing with the root of the problem (which is often a longer and more uncomfortable process), we shop, we drink, use drugs, eat, have sex, etc. Because they work immediately. When you never have to deal with distress… when you can simply shop, or smoke, or eat, or gamble, or hump it away EVERY time, then you never learn how to really deal with it or how to teach your children to deal with it. And as a society we have become so accustomed to instant relief that we readily accept the “fix it now” solution instead of embracing real change. And this mentality has slowly eroded our societal tolerance for distress.

You offer 22 keys for a person to reclaim their authenticity… is it necessary to work on all of these or how can a person tell which will be most important for them?

Yes and no. Overall the book is structured much like a map or a program, and is intended to be worked through in order and in its totality. Because all the keys combined is what really lays the foundation for a lifestyle that promotes, supports, and eases life transformation. However, some people will find that they already practice some or many of the keys provided, and those will obviously require less work than other areas.

The chapters are quite short and are designed to be very manageable. So I would encourage readers to at least take a precursory look at each one, but also to not feel obligated to give each one the same attention. As a general rule, the chapters that feel the hardest are those that you should really dial in on and devote more attention and effort to. Because mastering, or even just beginning those will like present the greatest growth.

Why do you think journaling is so useful a tool in working with your suggestions for transformation?

Well, it’s a lot of information, quite frankly. Journaling helps process what is most important to the individual at that time; separate the wheat from the chaff, so to speak. Also, if a person if truly committed to working through each key and to work for transformation, there will also be a lot of things that “come up.” Those may be emotions, or they may be physical life experiences. Either way, they are absolutely invaluable learning experiences. Journaling allows the reader to kind of snap shot that experience; to crystalize its essence, as it were, and preserve it for future reflection, as well as providing a running record or picture of their development.

What benefits can this book offer the reader?

I’d like to think that it helps people understand two things:

First, how your everyday lifestyle contributes to your overall health and happiness.

Secondly, how choosing a lifestyle that works for you is the only way to really change or be satisfied with your life.

You provide very inspirational quotes at the beginning of each chapter. Is there one that is your favorite?

Well, actually, I have two:

“My character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through action and acceptance can my soul be strengthened, my vision cleared, my ambition inspired, and my success achieved.” – Chapter 22 on Tolerating Change (Inspired by and adapted from Hellen Keller)

“My body is my temple, and my life is my creation.” – Chapter 15 on Affirmations

How did you work with the other contributor to the book?

Kristin was actually part of our treatment team at the Meehl Foundation well before the concept of this book came into being. She happens to handle a lot of our Facebook posting and blogging on top of her other responsibilities. So pulling her in on this project was just kind of a natural progression. 

Can you tell us more about your work at the Meehl House?

It’s pretty straightforward, really. The Meehl House is a luxury transitional residential group home for individuals struggling with a range of mental health diagnoses. We specialize in treating Borderline Personality Disorder and Bipolar Disorder using Dialectical Behavior Therapy (also known as DBT), but we also work pretty extensively with people suffering from PTSD and addiction – occasionally all at the same time. Basically, we provide a living space for them wherein they learn therapeutic and life skills, as well as a structured lifestyle, to help them lead more stable and successful lives at home. And for individuals in need of less intensive services, we also provide traditional outpatient services.

What ways can readers connect with you?

Visit our website: http://www.meehlfoundation.org

Like us on Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/MeehlFoundation

Follow us on Twitter: http://www.twitter.com/Meehlfoundation

Or for more information about the Meehl House’s available services:

Call (979) 798-7972 or email meehlfou@meehlfoundation.org

Joyful Transformation: 22 Keys to Reclaiming your Authenticity is available on Amazon.com in both paperback and Kindle.

Namaste!

Becca Chopra, author of The Chakra DiariesChakra SecretsBalance Your Chakras-Balance Your Lifeand The Chakra Energy Diet
www.theChakras.org

The Chakra Blog

 

 

Healing is a Spiritual Pursuit: BE YOUR SELF AND BE WELL #BookReview and #AuthorInterview


 

Hiebert_cvr_comp3One of the most useful guides I’ve ever read for self-healing and for energy healers is Be Yourself and Be Well: Connecting with your Soul’s Power to Heal. Dr. Steven Hiebert provides inspirational words and exercises to help the reader access the power of their own spirit… the power that makes healing possible.

Dr. Hiebert emphasizes the loving energy that is the basis of everything, the energy that provides all the answers to who you are and what you want. The transformation he writes of is achieved by starting on the soul level, where you can access your full potential, working outward from there.

“Once you see your Self as whole and undamaged, you will begin to create that image in your life.”

This powerful yet easy-to-follow book shows you how to achieve a deeper awareness, and transcend the obstacles that afflict the body and mind. It will teach you to quiet the busy mind/ego so you can reconnect with the divine energy within, focusing your attention on how you feel and how you want those in need of healing to feel.

The exercises at the end of each chapter range from Seeing yourself as a Spiritual Being, to Listening to Pain to find the deeper meaning behind it, and Finding and Living your Dreams. I found these exercises extremely helpful — they can be applied over and over again, making this book an invaluable resource you’ll want to keep on your shelf.

“If you can access the healing power the creator placed inside you, you can heal anything.”

This book could change the way you think about health and healing, helping you find the peace and contentment within your “Self” that are the most powerful tools for creating health and well-being… while releasing the stress that creates pain and sickness.

AUTHOR INTERVIEW: Many thanks to Dr. Hiebert, a healer, teacher, and doctor of chiropractic in St. Paul, Minnesota, who answers my questions here.

What overall message would you like readers to take away from your book?

You can heal! Healing comes from the power of your own soul which is timeless, eternal, and capable of almost anything. There is a quote from Walter M Miller, Jr. I include at the beginning of chapter two. “You don’t have a soul… You are a soul. You have a body, temporarily.” In other words, you’re not the body you live in. You’re the soul or inner-spirit. As such, you are the life-force that animates the body you live in. That is where healing comes from. There is no limit to what you can do when you access the healing power of your own soul. This is why the healing exercises at the end of each chapter are so important. When you connect with your true Self, you initiate your own healing.

What would you say is the difference between being “healed” and “cured?”

Many people think being healed and cured are the same thing. If you’re healed, you’re cured. And if you’re cured, you’re healed. But it just isn’t the case. I make this simple distinction: cure is for your body; healing is for your overall Self. Modern medicine can cure many illnesses. But, there is little to no healing involved. Cure is done to you. On the other hand, healing comes from you and requires your full participation. Healing comes from the awakening of your soul.

I love the way you explain the difference between the voice of the ego and the true self. Can you summarize that?      

The voice of the ego is the one that speaks in your head using a human language. It judges, categorizes, criticizes, and is the source of every negative thought. If you find you’re being hard on yourself for making a mistake, that’s your ego talking. It demands perfection yet rarely gets it. The true Self doesn’t use a human language. You can’t hear it in your head. It speaks quietly using feelings, sensations, and simple awareness. You experience it in your body; most often in your chest. The true Self is always open and accepting. It seeks understanding, connection, and is aware of the interconnectedness of all things. When you love someone no matter what they’ve done, that is an expression of your true Self.

You repeat several times in your writing, “You were made by love, as love, and for love.” Can you explain that further?        

Oh, I’m so glad you asked this question! People accurately say that the divine is love. Any time you see the words divine or creator, you can replace them with love. You were created by the divine (love), who made you in the same image (love). Your first and most important task in life is to be who you were created to be (love). Another foundational purpose of the healing exercises is to help you connect with the love the divine has for you and placed within you.

What would you say energy healers do to assist another person’s healing?   

Energy healers, each in their own way, call forward the spirit of the person being healed. That is what facilitates the healing. The things an energy healer does can be useful. But they are not what creates the healing. The power isn’t in the technique or method. The power is in the person. The most effective energy healers appreciate that their most powerful tool is their own spiritual presence and awareness. For example, if I listen carefully and ask the right question, it will often help a client discover they already know a solution to their problem. They feel empowered and take charge of their own healing.

How does one “return to the pain and express it” in a healing way?   

Most of our inner pain is a combination of beliefs and feelings. When those feelings are unexpressed they get swept under the rug, but their energy lives on. Under the rug is not gone. You will need to lift up the corner of the rug to see what’s under there. Then allow whatever it is to be expressed. The feelings are an energy looking for expression. By giving them voice, through purpose and intention, that energy gets released. As it is released, it no longer covers up the love and beauty of your true Self, and healing takes place.

While you offer many healing exercises, what would you say is the best way for a person to access the power of their own spirit?      

All the healing exercises have the same foundational purpose. They are specifically designed to help you deepen your connection with your own spirit. The healing journey is inward. To access the power of your own spirit, you must be quiet, look inward, and listen. But it’s a different kind of listening than most of us are used to. Because it’s not listening to words. In the beginning, it will most likely seem like you’re listening to nothing. But that “nothing” is filled with life. And that life is you. The healing exercises are guides to aid you in gaining a deeper awareness and connection with your true Self.

How can readers connect with you and purchase your book?          

I can be reached by email at drstevenh@aol.com. My books are for sale on my website at drstevenhiebert.com/authorYou can also connect with me on Facebook at DrStevenHiebert.

Namaste!

Becca Chopra, author of The Chakra DiariesChakra SecretsBalance Your Chakras-Balance Your Lifeand The Chakra Energy Diet
www.theChakras.org

The Chakra Blog

 

 

 

 

  

 

Yoga for the Brain? #BookReview and #AuthorInterview on THE WORD SEARCH ORACLE


CoverCombine a fun word game with profound insights, and you’re given a remarkable tool for spiritual development and self-realization.  The Word Search Oracle: Yoga for the Brain offers a creative, fun, meditative respite from the busy chatter of the mind… while flexing your brain.

What’s really unique is that each of the 60 word puzzles in the book is introduced by a philosophical Oracle on topics ranging from Fearlessness to Forgiveness.

And once you’ve worked out the puzzle, the words remaining in the grid make up a corresponding Mantra (yoga asana for the mind). These Mantras serve as positive affirmations to reprogram your mind for greater mindfulness, joy, health and love.

The Word Search puzzles provide cognitive training, cleverly disguised as fun. And the inspirational Oracles and Mantras help reprogram our thinking, replacing negative old thought patterns:

“…solving puzzles engages our ability to compare new information hidden in a puzzle with what is already dowloaded in our memory. As a result of our amazing neuroplasticity, neurons make new connections inside our brains, blending imaginative association and memory. We alchemize that data to pioneer new perspectives, conclusions and ideas… It is a kind of puzzle vision super power.”

TRY OUT PUZZLE VISION SUPER POWER, TODAY, FOR FREE.

Download and play with a sample puzzle from the book, titled Blessings, read the Oracle, find the hidden Mantra, and see how it can change your day:

Word Search Oracle Sample

The object of the game is to find and cross out all the words from the list below the puzzle. The words in this easy example can be found horizontally or vertically. Hidden within the puzzle is a secret message created by the letters not used. Place these letters in the blank lines to discover your Mantra… repeating this Mantra throughout the day will reinforce the Oracle Message about Blessing, and increase your awareness and appreciation of the good all around you.

INTERVIEW WITH AUTHOR, CRISTINA SMITH:

What inspired you to create the “Yoga for the Brain” books?

Travel, Sudoku and my brother were the inspiration for the series. A frequent flyer, I was bored with all of my reading material so, in true desperation, I turned to the puzzle pages of the inflight magazine. I saw the Sudoku and had an almost visceral reaction to them. My inner voice said something like, “Number puzzles- yargh! I don’t do those.”

Then I noticed how strong my opinion was of that innocent little puzzle and decided to try one. I was terrible at it. When my math genius brother Rick picked me up at the airport, I asked him if he was good at and liked Sudoku. The answer was yes. By the end of the visit, I decided to do an experiment. I wanted to see if I could train my mind to shift to a logic mode and learn to do Sudoku with a book of 300 easy puzzles.

It’s fascinating how sometimes the most unexpected things can trigger the deepest insights.

The most amazing thing happened. I delved into the puzzles and unexpectedly, deeply spiritual intuitive information came into my consciousness. Doing puzzles. I began to approach Sudoku as a path to spiritual awakening. It became a form of yoga. Yoga for the brain. I finished the puzzle book and suddenly, it became clear. I was writing a Sudoku book. I have been a freelance writer my whole career and have started numerous books. It was a totally crazy, surprising idea.

The Tao of Sudoku: Yoga for the Brain and our series was born. I asked my game creator brother Rick, to be the Puzzle Master and away we went! Since its publication, we have earned several literary awards. The book was so well received and we had so much fun creating the book, we decided to keep going. I invited my friends to play with me. Darity Wesley agreed so here we are now.

How did you work with the other contributors to the book?

The group synergy is an essential element of this book. Oracle Darity Wesley is my longtime colleague; Puzzle Master Rick Smith is my brother, and our Editor Extraordinaire is my lifelong friend Melissa Morgan. We collaborate, communicate and cooperate. We are highly supportive of each other’s expertise and perspective and enjoy highlighting our unique gifts. There’s a lot of love flowing in the veins of the entire process. Creating this book was an alchemical process. We all poured our best selves in to offer you our gold.

How would you recommend this book be best used?

The best way to use this book is one that feels right to you. It may vary depending on where your life is at in the moment. It could be used as a divination. Open the closed book and see what message comes to you. It could be used as a mindfulness practice. Notice perceptions and actions while doing a few puzzles and see what you can learn about yourself. It can be used as a personal mastery tool. You can pick a topic, work with the mantra for a period of time and see what happens. It is a wonderful way to entertain, maintain and train your mind. It’s great fun to do while traveling or waiting. Or you can just zip right through and enjoy the pure pleasure of puzzling.

What are the benefits of using Mantras?

Mantras are the yoga postures of the mind. They can quiet the mind so we can go beyond our brains to hear wisdom’s whispers. Like forms of hatha yoga, there are a variety of types and practices that can produce different results. They can help us shift our core beliefs by intentionally reprogramming our thought patterns.

Why did you use the Eye of Horus on your cover?

The cover of each book in our series, created by Rick, features a sacred symbol. The Yin/Yang is on The Tao of Sudoku: Yoga for the Brain. Our third book, The Word Search Sage: Yoga for the Brain, publishing in September 2017, will feature the ankh. The ancient Egyptian Eye of Horus on this book cover is particularly meaningful to Darity. It was part of the logo for her privacy and information security technology firm, Privacy Solutions, Inc., and now her A Modern Day Oracle™ logo. The Eye has a variety of meanings including protection, wisdom and health.

Please share your advice to readers.

Here are 10 tips to increasing your happiness quotient:

10. Nourish your curiosity.

9.  Offer your gifts.

8.  Give yourself credit for your successes.

7.  Fuel your love of learning.

6.  Think about what brings you joy.

5.  Be kind to yourself and others.

4.  Connect with your spiritual world daily.

3.  Remember you have a body.

2.  Have fun! It will sustain you as much as work.

1.  Know yourself better every day.

The Word Search Oracle: Yoga for the Brain and The Tao of Sudoku: Yoga for the Brain are both available on Amazon.com. To learn more or connect with Cristina Smith, see

https://www.facebook.com/CristinaEnergy/

https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/9831520.Cristina_Smith

Namaste!

Becca Chopra, author of The Chakra DiariesChakra SecretsBalance Your Chakras-Balance Your Lifeand The Chakra Energy Diet
www.theChakras.org

The Chakra Blog

 

 

 

 

 

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