A number of years ago I went through a phase where I was craving an NDE (near-death experience). I did not want to leave my body permanently, but there was a desire to have more understanding about life and death, and I thought the best way to gain more understanding would be to actually have the experience of dying. I had read about near-death experiences and noticed that those who came back had a refreshed outlook on life, felt more spiritually awakened, lived life with more awareness, had a greater sense of purpose, and no longer feared death. [Read more…]
I legally changed my name a couple of years ago. It may have seemed hasty to onlookers, but I had been thinking of changing it for a number of years before I actually did so. The very first time I thought of changing my name, I wanted to change it as a way to distance myself from my family; I felt I didn’t fit into their world and that I should just create my own. But, I knew that wasn’t the right reason to change it, so I held back my impulsive nature.
I went on to spend months and years in spiritual communities where name changes were common. There was that person would try on a new name every year, some who chose a new name and stuck with it, and others who waited for a name given by the teacher, as an acknowledgment that they reached a new point in their evolution. Although the motives or methods for changing names varied, the idea that one could call themselves something other than the label they were given at birth appealed to me. I pondered names in those years but let it go until a time when I felt more inspired. [Read more…]
I don’t know where the time has gone – today marks four years since I was officially diagnosed with Lymphoma. At that time, I was told I could recover in six months; I thought that seemed like a dreadfully long recovery, yet here I am… four years later, still in this situation. It’s not the same situation though, life has changed – I have changed.
Usually, I don’t think much about it; in past years, this day has come and gone without much acknowledgment on my part. I’m thinking more about it this year, perhaps because now I can actually see an end to it. It’s not that I wasn’t positive or hopeful before, I was, but something feels different this year. It’s more than hope or a positive outlook; I feel the confidence in myself to finally get through this. I have witnessed myself get through everything until this point, and reflecting back on what I have pulled myself through so far, the rest just seems easy now; it’s quite a contrast to the impossible endeavor it once seemed. I also feel like I’m in a better place than I’ve ever been. I feel able to do what I need to do in order to move on with my life – or, perhaps I should say that I am ready to move on with my life; it’s become apparent that I wasn’t ready before. [Read more…]
Saas-Fee, what to say? For three intense weeks, I called you home. After waking to the sound of cow bells each day, I got ready to step out into the crisp morning mountain air. Making my way down to breakfast, I strolled alongside the fields of wildflowers, gazing at the 360° alpine view, I was filled with a sense of freshness and awe. The hills of Saas-Fee certainly are alive!
Most mornings I was excited and energized, eagerly awaiting the offerings of the day. But there were also days when weariness took over my body and mind. Slowly sipping coffee with my classmates, we would try to delay the day’s happenings. But, no matter how tired I felt, once I was back up the hill and settled into the EGS classroom, it was easy to remember why I came. [Read more…]
I’ve been up since 5 am, is it excitement or ? Both, I suppose. I also could not wind down and get to sleep last night, but when I did, I slept hard and well. I wasn’t willing to try and sleep more. For my first night, I am happy with five hours; I don’t want to waste a moment here in Saas-Fee, there is no time to roll around in bed. I got up, made myself a cup of tea and did sun salutations as I watched the golden glow of the sun slowly illuminate the snow-capped mountains. [Read more…]
Recently I spent a week at “The Haven”, a retreat centre located on Gabriola Island. Gabriola is one of the Gulf islands nestled between the mainland and Vancouver Island. I love getting away to the islands for any reason; they are magical to me because anytime I visit one something shifts in my life. The Haven itself is a magical place. A place where people gather to improve themselves and the way they relate to others in this world. [Read more…]
This holiday season I took part in a powerful 10-day meditation retreat. The first nine days were an incredible opportunity to interiorize, reflect and deepen the meditation practice, but the real jewel of the retreat was our last night which was December 31st. We began a special meditation that evening, then continued meditating through the night and ended on the evening of January 1st. One might wonder why a group of people would subject themselves to an entire day and night of sleep deprivation just to meditate, but our lengthy meditation session gave us the chance to connect with each time zone of the world at the corresponding time of their midnight. Most people do not consider that this crossing point between December 31st and January 1st is the most powerful energy wave of the year. [Read more…]
Year after year I would dread the approach of the holiday season. The stress and chaos that accompanies this time of year always overwhelmed me and I began to see as a materialistic, wasteful, over-indulgent event that I did not want to take part in. Although I always respected that many people see Christmas as a time for connecting with family, or for getting into the spirit of giving, I always felt that there was much more to Christmas than that. This year rather than spend another Christmas over-eating and over-purchasing, I sought to meditate on the original significance of this time of year. [Read more…]