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Zen Master Seung Sahn

Zen Master Seung Sahn

Back in the mid-90s, I was in my mid-twenties and living in Hollywood. For the most part, I had no idea why I was there or what I was going to do. All I knew was that my mother had just passed away and most of my friends from Emerson College were working in one capacity or another in the film business. So I made the decision to drive my seafoam green Mazda from Austin to L.A. to find out what to do next.

I ended up living two blocks from Melrose Avenue in a very quaint “Melrose Place” type efficiency apartment. I did some PR, read screenplays and took temp assignments at various studios. It was fun, but somewhat silly at times and definitely at odds with my aspirations to be a serious spiritual student and creative. I was always very unclear about my creative path, but crystal clear about the need to find meaning and purpose in my life.

Then one day I did something very simple. I picked up the phone, dialed 411 and asked the operator for the number for Dharma. And you know what? She gave it to me. She gave me the number for the Dharma Zen Center which happened to be a few blocks away from me. Now, if you know anything at all about Los Angeles, having a convenient drive anywhere is a miracle in and of itself.

So the next evening, I went there to sit. I was not prepared for the enthusiastic and complicated Korean chanting, but I fell in love with it almost instantly. This began a very intense and joyful chapter of my life. It was also a strange and wonderful backdrop to working in a city that sort of chewed up and spit people like me out. The irony of my peaceful evenings juxtaposed against my super-stressful days of being “the assistant” or “temp” or “reader” was certainly not lost on me. In fact, I felt like this place provided a perfect balance to what I was trying to accomplish in the material world.

I was then introduced to the teachings of Zen Master Seung Sahn. To me, his pictures made him look like a kindly grandfather, a very happy Buddha. He was not intimidating at all, but radiant and joyful. I had the opportunity to mediate, sit and eat with Dae Soen Sa Nim and I consider myself extremely privileged to have been among such a enlightened and pure soul, however brief.

But what impressed me most about the Dharma Zen Center was the people I met and practiced with and the intense loving care that everyone put into deeply connecting to their true nature. It was refreshing.

The inner journey can seem very scary at times, and confusing. But within the walls of Dharma Zen Center, there was friendship, reality and safety. I enjoyed being a layperson among monks and nuns and I actually lived in the center for a few months sharing house duties like cooking and cleaning the altar. By the time I left I knew every chant by heart, and many of the customs of this very rich tradition. I thought I would learn a lot, but I suppose what really happened was that I remembered a lot.

I found out that my body was strong (108 prostrations every morning at 4:30 a..m. sure helps); that my mind was strong (I could sit for two hours and look at the floor without freaking out); my spirit was strong (I could sense a deep connection with people and sounds and the natural world which I had never experienced before); and my heart was strong (I knew love was the center of it all and that the way of compassion was a deep truth I had been longing to understand).

Here are some books by and about Master Seung Sahn, the champion of “I don’t know.” What a beautiful thing to let go of needing to know it all and moving in the direction of being.

Dropping Ashes on the Buddha

Only Don’t Know: Selected Teaching Letters of Zen Master Seung Sahn

And there is a wonderful documentary about Dae Soen Sa Nim called Wake Up! On the Road with a Zen Master. Here’s a clip:

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Where were you when you first learned about the Law of Attraction? For many of us, The Secret brought perspective, familiarity and organization to a universal principle that was somewhat elusive and undefined. It was an exciting starting point which introduced a new generation of seekers to the power of deliberate, positive thinking and the undeniable abilities we have to manifest whatever is in our highest good. In The Secret, we were delivered a variety of teachers offering personal experiences and perspectives to help people begin to put into practice this powerful law in practical and unexpected ways.

Dr. Joe Vitale was featured in The Secret and is a world-renowned motivational speaker, author, teacher and entrepreneur. He is the author of the international #1 best-seller, The Attractor Factor, the #1 best-seller Life’s Missing Instruction Manual, the #1 best-selling e-book Hypnotic Writing, and the #1 best-selling Nightingale-Conant audio program, The Power of Outrageous Marketing, among numerous other works.

I had the opportunity to ask Dr. Vitale a few questions regarding his current work and how his understanding of the Law of Attraction has evolved.

CL: In your latest book, Zero Limits: The Secret Hawaiian System for Wealth, Health, Peace, and More, you talk about the how people settle into self-limiting beliefs that keep them from leading their best life. What are some of the pillars to the Hawaiian System that help people overcome this tendency, and how did you discover it?

JV: The system erases any and all limiting beliefs, without you needing to know what they are. I discovered it from Dr. Hew Lew, who teaches workshops on the subject. The whole idea is to take total responsibility for everything in your life and ask forgiveness for it from the Divine. Dr. Hew Len was able to help heal an entire ward of mentally ill ciminals using this mehtod, as I reported in our book Zero Limits.

CL: You speak a lot about intention and how important it is to establish a solid intention before one can manifest desired results in any area of one’s life. Is there an optimal way to set an intention?

JV: The best way is with what I call an Inspired Intention. There are intentions from your ego and intentions from the Divine. The stronger ones come from the latter. Align yourself with that and nothing is impossible. I talk about this in my book The Attractor Factor (second edition).

CL: Since participating in The Secret and the publication of several of your books including the second edition of The Attactor Factor, has your personal understanding of The Law of Attraction changed or evolved? If so, how?

JV: Yes. I see that the Law of Attraction is a good start but not the ending. There’s also the Law of Right Action. There’s also the reality that you aren’t in charge of the entire universe; the Divine is. I explain this in my new audio program, The Awakening Course. At some point you have to surrender to a higher power.

CL: Is it possible for someone to manifest great financial abundance while working passionately in a traditionally low-paying job? In other words, how can someone committed to a career with modest income enjoy the benefits of financial wealth and freedom?

JV: Easy. I have a new audio program explaining all this called The Secret to Attracting Money. Money can come to anyone through products they create. I wrote my first books and products while working a full-time job.

CL: In The Key: The Missing Secret for Attracting Anything You Want, you talk about counter intentions. What are those, and can you share a couple of ways to overcome them?

JV: A counter-intention is the direct belief oppposite of what you say you want. An example is you want to lose weight. That’s the intention. But the counter-intention could be, “If I lose weight, I won’t feel safe.” Counter-intentions will stop your intentions from happening. I offer ten ways to get clear in my book The Key and seven ways in my audio program The Missing Secret. The easiest way to get clear is to love yourself and your limiting beliefs.

CL: What are some simple steps that individuals can take within one week that will begin to help them on the path to personal fulfillment, prosperity and happiness?

JV: The simplest thing is to feel grateful for what you have right now. Too many people want to feel grateful after they attract something good. It doesn’t work that way. In the movie The Compass I tell the story of shifting my life by feeling grateful for a pencil. It all begins right now, with what you already have.

CL: What are just five of your all-time favorite books that you would whole-heartedly recommend and why?

JV: The Book of est changed my life by putting me into the est seminar; Why Is This Happening to Me Again?explained how we keep creating the same problems; The Magic of Believing taught me the power of belief; 177 Mental Toughness Secrets of the World Class (is) a masterpiece; The Dark Side of the Light Chasers (is) eye-opening about how we have shadows to our public selves.

My brilliant friend Jana Christy (artist extraordinaire) forwarded me this incredible link to a talk that Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Eat, Pray, Love) recently made at the TED conference. She talks about her own rise to fame and what she knows about how we often ruin genius. Great talk.

somewhere-in-time-movie-748483

Last night we were going to kick off Valentine’s weekend at an expensive downtown restaurant. But as the afternoon unfolded, I couldn’t help but have an uneasy feeling about it. Did I really want to get dressed up, fight the traffic, lay out $100 for a heavy meal and then get home tired and stuffed? It just didn’t appeal to me. So instead, I went with my instincts and decided to cancel the reservation.

A new farmer’s market just opened right down the street, so I checked it out for the first time. I picked up a fresh baguette, artichoke hearts, marinated mushrooms, brie, dill havarti, strawberries, blackberries, assorted nuts, dried salami, chocolate rugalah and a nice bottle of orange seltzer. I laid out a beautiful picnic in the living room and filled it with candles. My husband had given me a CD called Bossa Nova for Lovers, and on it went.

When he came to the door, I told him I canceled the dinner reservation. When he asked me if I felt OK, I said “Yes!” and ushered him into the house. He loved it. And so did I. The whole dinner picnic felt luxurious, simple and abundant. Then he did about the most generous thing a man could do… he actually watched Somewhere in Time with me. One of my all time favorite movies. I’ve got to hand it to him. He sat through the whole thing, God love him.

loacards1living_the_simple_lifeSo this morning (the real Valentine’s Day) I awoke to several sweet gifts including a beautiful new journal, Law of Attraction cards by Esther and Jerry HicksA Writer’s Toolbox and Living the Simple Life by Elaine St. James. These were extremely thoughtful presents and I’m really going to enjoy them. Oh, and don’t forget the roses and truffles. What a beautiful way to start my day. I felt deeply rested and knew that our young son was having the time of his life at his grandparent’s.

And tonight, we had an actual dress-up date. We went to see the amazing performance troupe, Circus Oz. The acrobats, musicians, aerialists, etc. were stunning. It was inventive, funny, energetic and mesmerizing. And, of course, I love those Aussie accents! We left the theater in such a good frame of mind. Tomorrow, we will pick up our son and give him his very own valentine surprise… lollipops, trains, a frog and too many kisses to count.

circus-oz1

Peggy McColl is a speaker, consultant and an internationally recognized expert in the area of goal achievement. She is the author of the New York Times best-seller, Your Destiny Switch and has also written On Being… The Creator of Your Destiny; The 8 Proven Secrets to SMART Success; and 21 Distinctions of Wealth: Attract the Abundance You Deserve. Her most recent book, Be a Dog with a Bone (Always Go for Your Dreams) offers canine-inspired analogies for some essential life lessons. (Hay House, Jan. 2009)

She is the President and Founder of Dynamic Destinies, Inc., an organization that trains individuals, authors, entrepreneurs, corporate leaders and employees in compelling and strategic goal-setting technologies. Her work has been endorsed by some of the most renowned experts in the personal development field, including Neale Donald Walsch, Bob Proctor, Jack Canfield, Jim Rohn, Mark Victor Hansen, Caroline Myss, Gregg Braden, Debbie Ford and many others.

CL: You have been writing about and teaching people how to set and achieve goals, become successful and attract great wealth for many years. In your experience, how can striving to be financially prosperous be a part of one’s transformational journey?

PM: “Striving to be” anything (to be financially prosperous, be successful, in a loving relationship, at your ideal weight) is a process of “acting as if.” When one “acts as if” they are experiencing the joy and gratitude (and other positive emotions) of already achieving their goals. This is why they say “success is a journey.” It’s true, but it is equally true to enjoy the journey. When you are enjoying the journey and acting as if you already have all that you desire, you are truly living the experience in the moment. And, when you do, success will be drawn to you faster than you can imagine. It will seem that you are a gigantic magnet drawing to you all that you desire.

dog-with-bone1CL: In your latest book you use the behaviors and dispositions of dogs as a way to communicate some important ways people can achieve any goal. Why did you decide to use canine wisdom?

PM: I use dog metaphors because these animals represent beautiful, admirable, and desirable goal-achieving qualities such as persistence, playfulness, loyalty, and unconditional love. So to be a dog with a bone means that you’re someone who wants to achieve a specific outcome and remain steadfast in the pursuit of that goal, overcoming roadblocks, refusing to give up, and maintaining unwavering faith. 

CL: How can people who are stuck in self-limiting beliefs begin to shave away the fear and doubt that has prevented from living their most authentic life?

PM: Read my book Your Destiny Switch (smile). In all seriousness, there is a danger in answering this question with a short answer because there is so much to this. The best way to serve you and your readers is with this short excerpt from my book Your Destiny Switch to shed some light on this answer: [Every moment that you’re alive is one in which you can make a choice about what you want to feel. You can start creating new habits by mastering the art of switching your emotions, a skill that involves a three step process. When you’re ready to actually make the shift into a better, more positive emotion, there are several strategies you can use – alone or together – that are wonderfully effective at helping you make the switch. First, however, let’s look at the three steps in this process.

Step 1: Observe
The first step in making an emotional switch is rejecting a disempowering feeling, and you can’t do that unless you observe it. You have to be aware that you’re in a negative (or indifferent) state.

Step 2: Decide
In any given moment, you have a choice: Do you want to continue feeling the way you do, or do you want to switch?

Step 3: Switch
You can switch your emotions immediately if you choose to do so. No matter how strong the negative feeling you’re experiencing, the more you practice observing, deciding, and switching, the more quickly you’ll be able to make the transition to a positive emotion, because you’ve created this healthy habit.]

CL: In this latest book, you speak a lot about “dogged determination” in approaching your dreams, and what an essential attitude it is in being someone who can “make things happen.” Yet you also discuss the need to be flexible or “faithful” in trusting that you will achieve that goal without the need to constantly control what and how things actually happen. How do these two important principles work together?

PM: These two important principles go hand in hand (they BOTH are essential parts of the success recipe). Being dogged determined is setting a clear intention (state or claim that which you desire). At that point, you must detach yourself from the outcome and switch into the emotion of faith. This is sometimes referred to as “Let Go and Let God.” But letting go and letting God doesn’t mean that you can sit back and wish for things to happen without doing anything about it. On the contrary; you have a responsibility for what’s going to show up for you in your life. To create success, you need to align all of the factors for it in a fashion that will produce your desired results (which includes practicing and growing the emotion of faith).

CL: What are a few techniques or actions that someone can use when beginning to manifest their dreams?

PM: The first step is to decide to do something! And, then take the first step. Sit down and decide what you want and find the tools that will help you get there. My website has many resources and tools available and some of them are are available for free. No tool, no matter how powerful, can help you change your life if you don’t use it. Many people read self-help books, become excited about the promise of improving their quality of life and creating happiness for themselves, and start to practice the program they’ve just learned but soon wander off the path to their goals. They have the resources they need, but they’re locked away in a toolbox that’s covered with dust and cobwebs. If you want to build your dream life, you’ve got to implement effective goal-achieving tools (follow the guidelines in my books), and start working!

CL: For many people, simply identifying what it is they want in life is the hardest part of the success equation. What are some good ways for people to discover their true passions or life purpose?

PM: Here is a great excerpt from Be a Dog with a Bone that will answer this question perfectly:
[A deep desire comes from the soul, and you’ll recognize it simply by the way you feel about it in your heart. When you uncover this dream (bone), you’ll have deep determination, because determination is fueled by desire. Short lived wants don’t run deep, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But it’s vitally important to connect with the deepest dream of your heart, for when you do, you’ll access your dogged determination. Think about the following questions: Do you know what you want? Do you have a dream that you wish would come true or a goal you want to achieve, one that you’re truly passionate about? Connect to your deepest desire, your biggest dream. What is it? If you could have anything, and I mean anything, what would it be?]

CL: What are you reading now? Are there any books or authors currently on your radar that you would recommend for those inspired to move in the direction of their dreams?

PM: Believe it or not, I read my own books. Please don’t misunderstand me. I’m not bragging, but my books contain three decades of my own discoveries and I’ve learned from many of the greatest masters on this planet. Their wisdom has helped me to create an extraordinary life, and therefore, not only did I write about it, I live it! Your Destiny Switch / 21 Distinctions of Wealth / Be a Dog with a Bone (all published by Hay House) and available everywhere.

peggysfamily

Erik Satie is one of my favorite composers and the Gymnopedie trilogy is music that settles the soul and soothes the heart. Enjoy!

At one point or another many of us come to a crossroads in our professional and personal lives. We sit back, sigh deeply and ask ourselves “is this all there is?” For Renee Trudeau, the deep inner calling of her life became louder and louder until one day she decided to leave a successful corporate career and change the direction of her life forever. What happened next not only took her own family in an entirely new direction, but her powerful message of motherhood and self-care has changed the lives of thousands of women worldwide. Now, Renee is exploring the world of everyday spirituality. And somewhere in the process of being a student, she has become the teacher.

 

CL: You left behind a lucrative and very stable career in order to pursue your passions. Can you tell me about that decision, what you decided to do and how leaving the corporate environment changed your life?

RT: Gregg Levoy, author of Callings: Finding and Following An Authentic Life says “Generally people won’t pursue their calling until the fear of doing so is finally exceeded by the pain of not doing so. But, it’s amazing how high our threshold is for this type of pain.” I knew after a stable, 14-year career in the marketing communications field that there was another way I was meant to use my gifts and talents.

I had coached professionals (for free) for years on how to develop and leverage their personal brand and I had a strong desire to help others express their potential. So, after much soul searching—more on this journey in my book– I launched Career Strategists in 2000, based on my strong belief that we are truly meant to integrate “who we are” with “what we do” in the world. Yes, like all that make the leap to self-employment, I had a lot of fear come up. But I knew that the life I desired (one where I was the master of, not the slave to my life) was more important than the fear. Ultimately, I had no choice but to take this leap.

I believe we all receive these taps on the shoulder throughout our life. The question is, next time you receive a tap, will you shrug the feeling off, or say yes (to your life)?

CL: How did the concept of personal renewal groups and your book, The Mother’s Guide to Self-Renewal, initially come about and what has been the response?

themothersguide_cover_000RT: After having my son at age 37, I was shocked to realize how profound the transition to parenthood is. I believe having a child, literally changes you on a cellular level. Who you are will never be the same. And, at the same time, it really rocks you to your core and challenges you to get clear on why you’re here, what is your path and what does the life you truly desire—look like? (My video talks more about this.)

After searching for resources and books that support mothers in nurturing their essence while taking care of their kids, I found nothing and was ultimately guided to start a Personal Renewal Group (self renewal circle for women) in 2003. Five years and countless groups later, after repeated requests from my Personal Renewal Group members, The Mother’s Guide to Self-Renewal was born. Now thousands of women around the US/Canada and beyond are leading these groups, which are based on the Guide, and supporting women in nurturing their emotional well-being. The response has been phenomenal (many therapists, coaches, doulas and women’s empowerment advocates are being called to lead groups.) Everyone seems to immediately get how important and needed a life coaching program like this, is. The book will be published in Korea later this year. It seems that the messages that came through me are resonating on a universal level.

CL: When people come to a crossroads in life, they are often told to pursue their passions and the money will follow. Do you believe that’s true?

RT: Yes! After working now for more than 20 years in this arena (I started helping family/friends with career strategy when I was eighteen) and having supported thousands in both big and small career and life transitions, I absolutely believe it is our job, our responsibility, to give birth to the best that is within us. And when we do this from a place of truth and authenticity, we will prosper.

I also work with clients a lot on marrying their passion with their brilliance (what you innately “do best”). This is where the magic happens! When we leverage our innate God-given talents, we’re in flow. We’re doing what we were put on the earth to do. And, when this happens, we can’t help but prosper financially. Interestingly, for most of my clients, the hard work isn’t around manifesting, it’s around “receiving” (believing that you’re worthy to be paid for these gifts).

CL: We all know how important it is to take good physical care of oneself in order to be effective in life. What else do you advise people to do to take care of themselves? What is your definition of self-care?

RT: Self-care is the practice of self-nourishment and self-nurturing. It’s essential to feeling whole and to being human. Cancer survivor/activist Audrey Lorde says “Self care is not about self-indulgence, it’s about self-preservation.” Taking time to fill our cups first before helping others is essential to our well-being and to optimal living.

Start by cultivating an awareness of how you talk to, treat, think about and care for yourself—physically, emotionally and spiritually. I have found the practice of self-care is a portal for many of us to our deeper selves. Loving ourselves and treating ourselves as if you would treat a small child, requires a deep honoring of spirit, of our essence (you can learn more about the transformative power of self-care in The Mother’s Guide to Self-Renewal). Begin with baby steps, be gentle with yourself and know that developing a self-care practice takes time and being around others who believe this is essential, too.

CL: What are you reading right now? What are some books that you can recommend for people interested in personal/spiritual growth?

RT: Life coaches Jennifer Louden and Cheryl Richardson are two of the original self-care advocates/pioneers and all of their books are wonderful and highly recommended, particularly if you’re just getting started on your self-care journey. In terms of physical self-care, I am reading Quantum Wellness by Kathy Freston and The Wisdom of Menopause by Dr. Christiane Northrup—both are very holistic and integrative in their approach to physical/emotional/spiritual well-being. I am also reading (I’m a multiple books at one time reader) Practicing The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle, Soul Signs by Diane Eichenbaum, Conversations with God (again) by Neal Donald Walsch, This I Believe: The Personal Philosophies of Remarkable Men and Women and Open Heart, Open Mind by Father Thomas Keating (who will be in Austin Feb. 21-22).

CL: I understand you are working on a new project. Can you tell us about that?

RT: Since last summer, I have been researching and exploring the theme of “everyday spirituality”—the idea that the sacred is present and accessible everyday, through simple daily rituals and activities like walking in nature, playing with our kids and artistic expression, etc.

I think most Americans are overwhelmed, overworked and overscheduled. They are craving meaning in their lives, but when they hear the term “spiritual practice,” they think forget it, who has time to go on a ten day silent retreat or go sit on a mountaintop! I’ve got kids to get to soccer and bosses to appease! I believe strongly that there are many avenues for nourishment on the“spiritual practice” continuum and that each of us just needs to get quiet and hear what spiritual renewal looks like to us.

I was raised in a very interesting family (my latest blog posting on Spirituality talks about this)—I have a brother named Shiva and a sister named after St. Theresa. Questions around spiritual renewal and fulfillment have been sitting with me for a long, long time. I believe this is the direction my work will be taking me over the next 5-7 years.

Upcoming Events:

Renee Trudeau is holding a Career Mojo workshop on 2/26/09 as well as a women’s self renewal retreat on 3/24/09. Current Living readers can enjoy a special early bird rate for the women’s retreat through April 10th!! But register early because these workshops fill up fast. Please go to www.reneetrudeau.com for more info.

benjamin-robenalt2I have to admit that I stole that headline from my good friend, Sonya Feher who writes an amazing blog called mamaTRUE: Parenting as Practice. I had the great privilege of being pregnant at the same time as Sonya and our first and only sons are one month apart. She has dedicated herself to exploring the power of motherhood as a spiritual practice which can help us reclaim what was wiped away and lost in our own childhoods.

For me, being the mother to an innocent, pure and precious being has given me a profound mission in life, and produced a deep awakening in my soul. Where my creative ambitions were once dilluted and dulled by the mind chatter of my relentless ego, I can now see a clear path for myself and how my husband and I are choosing to raise our son. We want to preserve and protect his true nature, his inherent and deep knowing that all is well, that joy is a birthright and that there exists an army of guides available to him for support and love whenever he needs it. He will never be alone, because we are all connected– and he is connected to all things.

I am lucky that his father is a deeply peaceful, playful and compassionate man who values creativity, exploration, fun and simple pleasures. What we want for Ben is not something that society, the media or the world at large necessarily models or overtly teaches. Certainly there are values that institutions feel obligated to instill: teamwork, sacrifice, loyalty, respect, honor, responsibility, dedication, honesty, etc. I believe these values are overall quite good– but they can be tricky. Instead of mottos and mission statements and oaths, I want Ben to use his intuition, instincts and faith (and we modeled for him) to help guide him in the direction of compassion and truth. I want his to be a very joyful life experience based on a commitment to being the most authentic person he can be. I want him to be true to himself, and to let love flow freely in and out of his heart.

I hope that one day he knows that he saved my soul. He inspired me to look deeply within to try to be the best possible role model in this physical existence. As a parent, my job is not to control my child. My job is guide him, and allow him to remind me of how beautiful a sense of wonder and joy can be every single day. My job is to lovingly point him in the direction of his true purpose– whatever that is.

Once, all I wanted for Ben was to be happy, healthy, go to a prestigous college or university and get married (to someone I really, really like!) Yes, that’s normal. But two years ago when I first gazed into his big, blue, crystal clear eyes a bigger, newer dream was born. I want my son is to know that he is a child of a vast, wondrous and beautiful universe. I want him to know everyday that he is literally a miracle. I want him to feel, deeply feel, that anything in life is possible and that the music of the world was made for him, and for all people. My hope is that he knows how perfectly amazing it is to just be exactly who he is… right now. I want him to listen to his own higher self, his own personal guidance and not direct his life based on other people’s opinions or fear. I want Ben to love himself and feel the love that we all have for him.

And you know what? I want that for all children. We are the guardians of their pristine and loving spirits, and each and every adult needs to take that responsibility extremely seriously. A child’s natural state is to be loving, curious, creative, receptive and joyful. This is what I strive for now. Let the natural tempo of a child’s imagination and energy help slow us down, remember what’s important and encourage us to contact the deep divine voices that are guiding us back to our true selves each and every day. Live with the open, forgiving, and loving heart of a child, and life can be very, very good.

Sandra Yancey, Founder & CEO, eWomenNetwork

Sandra Yancey, Founder & CEO, eWomenNetwork

I was invited by Patti DeNucci to a great women’s networking event today produced by eWomenNetwork. The founder and CEO, Sandra Yancey gave an inspiring and powerfully honest speech on weathering the current economy by focusing on using this time to re-tool, re-examine, refine and redefine what we are doing with our lives. There is so much opportunity out there, and it was nice to be among positive, passionate women who are choosing not to let themselves be frightened or paralyzed by the news of apparent and imminent economic disaster.

We also had the opportunity to see the trailer for her new movie, GLOW, which includes a series of interviews with powerful and successful women including Cathie Black, President, Hearst Magazines and Dr. Helene Gayle, President and CEO, CARE (among many others). They all understand that unique and elusive formula for personal prosperity and fulfillment.

I was fortunate enough to spend time with Sandra in her limo on the way to the airport. Down to earth, insightful and rich with experience, her life has been dedicated to empowering women to be smart, be authentic and to be passionate. (Check back here soon when I post an interview with Sandra)

In the meantime, I urge you to watch the trailer. Check out information about the 9th Annual eWomenNetwork International Conference and Business Expo.

Here’s the trailer:

I’m relatively new to the world of oracle cards and what they are designed to bring to a personal development/meditation/self-awareness practice. The only cards I really ever had any experience with were tarot or regular playing cards when I would get a psyhic reading once a year.

2375_c1But after I read “Ask Your Guides” by Sonia Choquette I discovered the accompanying oracle cards and I was intrigued. The card meanings were gentle, clear and above all extremely relevant. I was incredibly impressed with the overwhelmingly pure insight that Choquette provided in the guidebook that came with the deck and thought “how can something that looks like a Valentine’s Day gift include such simple and sustaining advice?” This is amazing! Whether I am pulling one card or doing a simple spread, I always find crystal clear guidance from my spirit guides, particularly if my own mind chatter or physical exhaustion is preventing me from hearing these messages through meditation.

I then discovered Doreen Virtue’s decks which at first seemed a little too “out there” for me. But I was guided to get both the “Messages from Your Angels” and the “Ascended Masters” decks from my extremely gifted neighbor and from a medium, respectively. 3047_c1What I’ve experienced is that all of the decks synchronize so perfectly when I ask a specific question. I am able to go from deck to deck seamlessly and find information, guidance and insight which is inspired by great spiritual masters who have passed or highly beings or streams of thought– the angels– who can provide positive perspective which I sometimes have difficulty grasping through my personal ego lens at given moment. If anything, the cards have the ability to efficiently direct me back to my true still small voice inside that resides separate and apart from the ego that wishes to direct me through hesitation, fear and worry. The “Ascended Masters deck “includes gorgeous paintings of 44 male and female cross-cultural deities, such as Ganesha, Merlin, Saint-Germain, Apollo, Pallas Athena, White Buffalo Calf Woman, Jesus, Moses, Yogananda, Green Man, and Kuthumi. The enclosed guidebook gives expanded explanations of each card’s meaning, and a brief history of each ascended master. As with each of Doreen’s oracle-card decks, the messages for each card are positive, accurate, and life-affirming.”

104_c11Cards are tools only– they have no inherent power other than being the microphone for Source Energy to communicate simple human truths in order to keep you in the current of universal truths that can positively impact our experience on the physical plane. In my experience, there is no separation from “out there” or “in here.” It’s a beautiful thing to be plugged into universal intelligence and positive personal development tools like these are uplifting and energizing to the seeker.

February 2009
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