Laura, Author at Experiential Online Animism Class - Page 9 of 15
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get lost

Get Lost

You know, some of my most favorite trips were ones where I had no agenda and no particular destination. It's just a kind of "get lost on purpose" or an "I'll know where I am when I get there" type of adventure. These are the types that encourage meandering, lingering, and savoring. When you don't have to be anywhere, you're more likely to take that turn down a wandering lane. You're more likely to talk to that delightful couple over breakfast or discover that wonderful cave. I suppose we all have a bucket list. And the wonders of the world aren't called that for no reason. So, I am not saying that making plans is a bad idea. Just suggesting that maybe, sometimes, it's good to just let life take you where...

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third world spiritual travel

The Joy of Third World Spiritual Travel

One of the greatest joys of third world spiritual travel is the rawness of life. The people don't have the luxury of first world distractions, so every day is real. They can't afford or can't get an aspirin for their aches much less a Xanax or Percocet so there is no escape from their feelings. This makes life rich. They delight in small things like rain on hot day. A feast day is a huge celebration. It doesn't matter how much is on your to do list or who you're mad at. Those things can wait. Today we feast. The view of the world always depends upon where you are standing. If you are standing in a sterilized world of plenty, the photo of these children may look pitiful and heart rending....

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how to be spiritual

I Don’t Know How to Be Spiritual

More and more often I hear people say, "I don't know how to be spiritual." This saddens me greatly. That's like saying, "I don't know how to laugh" or "I don't know what my stomach feels like." Not knowing how to be spiritual is a state of separation from yourself. Spirituality is not something that you do. It's something that you are. Like being emotional, physical, and mental. Imagine how alien it would feel to not know how to feel or to think! It's as big a deal to not be in touch with your spirituality. So, let's remedy that! Spirituality is an awareness and practice of being a connected energetic being. Your spirit is the conscious part of you that exists outside your body. A really great way to get in...

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Missing Bonnie Scotland

Some places hit you over the head. Some are softer and creep in like the fog in the night. For me, Scotland is the latter. It was certainly special while we were there, but with the distance of three months now, my fondness has only grown. The people are among the nicest I've met in the UK. I could listen to them talk all day. There is laughter in their voices and a twinkle in their eyes. There is sadness in their souls as well. This only gives them depth and character. They feel like whole people, not mannequins. The food is the best I've had in the UK. I love a Cornish pasty, but other than that, the cuisine of the rest of Great Britain leaves a lot to be desired. I...

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relationship with the dead

Creating a Relationship With the Dead

Fall is upon us. It's time when the dead roam the earth more freely (because there is more darkness after the fall equinox). And on the upcoming three day period (Halloween, All Saints Day and All Souls Day), contact with the dead is easier. So this is when the dead come back to visit - particularly those who are in the in between state who have not fully crossed over. (These are the scary, possibly unhealthy dead). It's the perfect time to cultivate  relationship with the dead. It's something we don't do well in this country because we don't really do death. So, how do you have a relationship with the dead? It's a great question. Let's look first at why you'd want a relationship with the dead. Why Have a Relationship With the...

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i deserve

The Poison of “I Deserve”

I see a lot of coaches, motivational speakers, and spiritual leaders who use the term "I deserve" to get people to create change. It's a strong statement that works to create movement. Let me explain why acting from this standpoint is poison. You're Already Worthy "I deserve" makes it seem like things only come to people who are worthy. It's a way to stand up and say, "I earned this, so I am going to let myself have it" or maybe "I am going to do this for myself." You're already worthy. We all are. You don't have to do anything to become worthy. We're all divine creatures who are part of a bright and shiny whole. Sometimes we forget that. Remember is not the same as earning it. You don't have to earn...

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Is Your Spiritual Group a Cult?

Someone recently asked me if I was leading a cult. Once I got over the shock, I decided to explore what makes a spiritual group a cult. Here's what I came up with. A “Cult” is defined as a group or sect bound together by veneration of the same thing, person, ideal, etc. Although the term is typically applied to religious groups, other types of groups can be considered cults such as multi-level marketing companies, political organizations, self-help groups, and spiritual groups! Cults tend to be viewed negatively by outsiders because they generally involve manipulation to get you involved and committed to the group. Most people say, “I would never get involved in a cult! I could see that coming a mile away.” If that were true, there wouldn’t be between 3,000- 5,000...

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spiritual growth

When Spiritual Growth Leads to Loss

People often think that as you become more spiritually aware, your life gets better in every way. While that can happen, it doesn't tend to be the norm. What's more common is that spiritual growth leads to loss. You lose old values, interests, and friends. This could make your growth really lonely. All growth requires sacrifice. That hermit crab has to get out of its shell and into a new one. It just won't fit in there anymore. If you want to get into that kindergarten class, you have to let go of your mother's hand and walk in alone. When you get there, it's scary! But you know what? The fear only lasts a moment. Then you're creating a new normal with new friends, new ideas, and a new you. If...

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man who can't dance

Never Give a Sword to a Man Who Can’t Dance

Confucius said, "Never give a sword to a man who can't dance." Oh, that confusing Confucius! Whatever did he mean by that? In some medicine wheels, the warrior energy is found in the north. The south is the direction of music, dance, beauty, creativity, and inspiration. It is the energy that allows us to feel joy and peace. Without this energy to temper and balance the warrior energy, the warrior can become a savage. Our current society is a warlike society, not a warrior culture. Warlike cultures focus on domination, control, and gaining dominion over others. Warrior cultures cultivate both the lover and the fighter so that a person knows when to fight, doesn't take small things as an affront, and knows the value of what he takes from another - whether...

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don't lose your stories

Don’t Lose Your Stories

If you look at all the ancient people, they are all steeped in story. There are stories about their heroes, why things are done the way they are, how things got to be the way they are, codes of conduct, and other things that are woven into every day life. These create the threads by which people are rooted and connected. The whole tribe was interwoven into those stories and believed in those stories. In modern culture we don't share common stories. We don't even have shared stories within our own families. Perhaps we don't even have relationships within our own families. This is why so many of us are lost. How can you know who you are when the threads that create you have been severed and lead nowhere? How can...

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