The Holy Days

Chihuly exhibit at Denver Botanic Gardens

There’s a vulnerability on the planet during the holiday season. I see it in people’s faces: beneath the stress and tightness and frantic pace lives the softness of an open heart, as if the emissaries of grief travel from broken heart to eyes and softening the edges. I see the longing for connection, the most basic human desire to break through our isolation and sit comfortably in others’ company. I see the desire for peace. I see the longing for love.

It happens in small moments as I walk through my day. I catch the eyes of a driver in the parking lot and smile. She smiles back. A meeting of strangers. I drive out of the parking lot and wave at the homeless man on the corner. “Can we give him anything, mommy?” my son asks. I know I don’t have any small … Click here to continue reading...

The One True Constant

My dear friend, Elaine Hall of The Miracle Project, connected Diane and I several weeks ago, and I’m so glad she did! Diane leads “Magic of Mandala” workshops in Los Angeles which, as she explains in this post, utilize the age-old power of mandala-making to assist people in accessing their subconscious and their true self. I’ve often talked about making mandalas as a powerful ritual that can be utilized for all of life’s transitions and I’m thrilled to have a place to send people who are interested in exploring this art further.

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Each one of us is a work in progress. In a physical and spiritual sense we are in a constant metamorphosis. Some changes are micro and some are macro, some internal others external. Our very existence is a perpetual transition. Much of this goes on quite quietly and uneventfully, but sometimes we get a heads up … Click here to continue reading...

Walking the Labyrinth: A Birthday Ritual

“Your life is a sacred journey. And it is about change, growth, discovery, movement, transformation, continuously expanding your vision of what is possible, stretching your soul, learning to see clearly and deeply, listening to your intuition, taking courageous challenges at every step along the way. You are on the path… exactly where you are meant to be right now… And from here, you can only go forward, shaping your life story into a magnificent tale of triumph, of healing, of courage, of beauty, of wisdom, of power, of dignity, and of love.”

– Caroline Adams

Birthdays are often a time of year when I yearn for an ancient spiritual community who can guide me or those around me through the rituals that they’ve enacted for thousands of years. The traditional American birthday rituals  – opening presents, having a party with balloons and cake – is fun for kids but in … Click here to continue reading...

Meaningful Rituals: Blessing Way

Over the next couple of weeks, I’ll be publishing several posts on meaningful rituals. Please read the initial post on rituals before reading the specific ideas for ways to incorporate a ritual into your ceremony. Although these are written for women getting married, they can be adapted or modified for men and for other transitions, like becoming a parent. And I’d love to hear about rituals that you included in your ceremonies.

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Blessing Way is an ancient Native American (Navajo) ritual that honors a woman’s transition into motherhood. Because of the emotional parallels, in recent years the ritual has been adopted by brides to honor the wedding passage. As with all transitions, the woman needs to feel the support and guidance of her community as she crosses over into the unknown.

The ceremony is simple and beautiful and combines both the cleansing element of mikvah and the speaking element … Click here to continue reading...

Summer Solstice

Today we transition into summer through the portal of the Solstice, the longest day of the year. Like the wedding day, a mother’s labor and baby’s birth day, and moving day, today is the transitional marker that separates the old stage of life or season from the new. As such, it carries a vulnerability and potency that is available to us when we intentionally choose to connect to its energy.

In honoring the Solstice this year, I turned to one of my favorite books for celebrating rituals with children called “Circle Round”, by Stawhawk, Diane Baker, and Anne Hill. They write:

“The Summer Solstice reminds us that nothing lasts forever. We do not live in the unchanging twilight realm of Faery, but in the living, dying, fading, and growing realm of earth. Whenever something is completed we must let it go.

“Because the things we love don’t last forever, we … Click here to continue reading...