Mother Love

“All living beings have been your mother in a former life” say Buddhist teachings that encourage altruism toward others. On Mother’s Day, we practice learning to see all beings as our mother -or whoever cared for us when we were young, in order to shift toward a kinder way of being. The more we engage in this type of contemplation, using rebirth as a metaphor, the more we develop a sense of equanimity and can relate with compassion and empathy.

‘Bodhicitta’ is the aspiration to realize enlightenment for the benefit of others. “The jewel that is the seed of pure happiness in the world and the remedy for the suffering of the world.” Enlightening beings, called bodhisattvas, altruistic heroes of the mind, seek to generate the thought of awakening and then maintain the thought as they fare on the Buddha path. In Tibetan Buddhism, bodhicitta is said to have six causes: 1) Seeing All Sentient Beings As One’s Mothers, 2) Remembering Their Kindness, 3) Repaying Their Kindness, 4) Love, 5) Boundless Compassion and, 6) Altruistic Intention.

Pollinator Power

For The Love Of Spring. Pollinator Power.

For the love of  Spring. Let’s all be eco-conscious and wait to clean up our gardens until after temperatures are consistently above 50 degrees. Many bees, butterflies, and other pollinators are currently overwintering in the dead leaves and hollowed out stems of last year’s plants. Please leave the leaves! If you clean out your gardens now you will be destroying habitat to this year’s bounty of beneficial beauties and critical creatures that make countless contributions to our everyday world. Allow pollinators to wake on their own carefully calculated timeline. This small act of mindfulness will help them to survive and thrive.

The Overstory

The Overstory: A Novel, By Richard Powers, Published By W.W. Norton & Company, The 2019 Pulitzer Prize Winner For Fiction

The winner of the 2019 Pulitzer Prize for fiction receives Wonder. Wisdom. Words. worthy recommendation. A wise, deep, impassioned novel of activism and resistance, that is also a stunning evocation of, and ode to, the natural world. The Overstory is the quintessential eco-epic for the climate change era, whose win couldn’t come at a more pivotal time in history. It’s been called “An ingeniously structured narrative that branches and canopies like the trees at the core of the story, whose wonder and connectivity echo those of the humans living amongst them.” An allegorical ecological masterpiece writ large that the Pulitzer committee praises for approaching trees and the threats facing them with reverence and an urgency that could be enough to change minds.

The Overstory: A Novel By Richard Powers

From the roots to the crown and back to the seeds, The Overstory unfolds in concentric rings of interlocking fables that range from antebellum New York to the late twentieth-century Timber Wars of the Pacific Northwest and beyond, exploring the essential conflict on this planet: the one taking place between humans and nonhumans. There is a world alongside ours that is vast, slow, interconnected, resourceful, magnificently inventive, and almost invisible to us. This is the story of a handful of people who learn how to see that world and who are drawn up into its unfolding catastrophe. The Overstory is a book for all readers who despair of humanity’s self-imposed separation from the rest of creation and who hope for the transformative, regenerating possibility of a homecoming. If the trees of this earth could speak, what would they tell us?

Care Of The Soul

Psychotherapy As Care Of The Soul: A Training In Thomas Moore’s Soul-Based Approach At Kripalu Center April 26-28th 2019. This program is mainly for practicing counselors, therapists + healers, but students of the therapeutic arts looking to deepen their work may also be interested.

The word psychotherapy means to serve or care for the soul. In soul-based therapy, we recognize the autonomy of the soul in a person’s life as a source of guidance and healing. The soul is central to our humanity, intimate connections, spiritual vision, and pleasure. When the life of the deep soul is blocked, we suffer. Soul-based therapy requires an ability to see what is going on beneath the surface. Since the language of the soul is poetic, we must learn to attune to artistic, literary, mythic, and dream imagery. Intense immersion in therapies that zero in on underlying narratives and themes playing out in a person’s life such as Alchemy, Renaissance Magic, and other esoteric systems provide rich guidance for soul processes. Specially designed for mental-health professionals, this program with Thomas Moore explores the journey of becoming a soul-sensitive human being, able to guide others with depth. 

About

Thomas Moore is the author of Care of the Soul and 25 other books on spirituality and depth psychology. He holds a PhD in religious studies from Syracuse University. Moore is a lecturer, author, and psychotherapist working in archetypal psychology, world religions, spiritualities, and the arts. 

Kripalu Center, nestled in the Berkshire mountains of Western Massachusetts, attracts more than fifty thousand people a year as North America’s largest all-inclusive yoga-based healing and education center. The premiere destination renowned in wellness circles for healing body mind spirit.

Namaste Nuance

Namaste. You hear it often. You might even say it. But do you know what it truly means? Namaste (nah-mah-stay) is a Sanskrit word which literally translates to “Salutation To You,” or an amplified version, “The Divine In Me Bows To The Divine In You.” The gesture Namaste represents the belief that there is a Divine spark within each of us that is located in the heart chakra. An acknowledgment of the soul in one by the soul in another. An affirmation with an element of deep respect, that brings about the essence of oneness, and an understanding of the true nature of reality. When someone says Namaste, the word itself carries the vibration of true seeing.

To perform Namaste, we place the hands together at the heart chakra to increase the flow of Divine love, close the eyes, and bow the head. Bowing the head and closing the eyes helps the mind surrender to the Divine in the heart. One can use Namaste for oneself as a meditation technique to go deeper inside the heart chakra; and it is also a beautiful, albeit quick, salutation and meditation in action, to express gratitude and reverence toward others.

Seeds Of Love

Seeds of Love: Special Evening With Deepak Chopra & World-Renowned Environmental Leader Vandana Shiva,ABC HomePlant-Based Restaurant NYC, February 5th, 2019. Evening includes high vibration tonics, mezzas, and music + poetry by Haleh Liza.

Ecologist, philosopher, and founder of the Navdanya environmental conservation movement, Dr. Shiva was named by Forbes magazine as one of the seven most influential women in the world today. Celebrated for her plant intelligence seed freedom curriculum that focuses on the reclaiming of traditional methods of seed saving, sowing, growing and harvesting to insure a healthy future for us all. Highlighting the inherent rights of people to practice indigenous, organic, and biodiverse farming as an alternative to industrial agriculture. With a dedication to renewing a sacred food system, one that is aligned with the natural rhythms of Mother Earth, ecology, human health and global social justice. Deepak Chopra and Dr. Shiva will discuss themes from her new book, One Earth, One Humanity Vs. The 1%.

One Earth, One Humanity Vs. The 1% by Dr. Vandana Shiva, Forthcoming March 2019.

Dr. Vandana Shiva’s most radical and important ideas are represented in lucid form in this essential primer for those who wish to understand the forces that threaten our planet. Her vision of “one earth, one humanity” and its scientific and cultural roots are explained in depth; the monopolistic economic machinations of the 1% are exposed; the genetic manipulations of Monsanto are uncovered; and “philanthropists” are exposed as the new Robber Barons. Vandana Shiva’s struggles on the streets and in homes and farms across the world have yielded a set of principles based on inclusion, nonviolence, reclaiming the commons, and freely sharing the earth’s resources. These ideals, which she calls “earth democracy,” serve as an urgent call to peace and as the basis for a just and sustainable future. Unafraid to confront authority and name names, this new book exposes the global elite, uncovering their links to the rising tide of fundamentalism, violence against women, and planetary death.

About

Deepak Chopra is a world-renowned pioneer in integrative medicine and personal transformation, and the founder of The Chopra Foundation, the Chopra Center for Wellbeing, and co-founder of Deepak HomeBase. He is the author of more than 85 books translated into over 43 languages, including 25 New York Times bestsellers.

Haleh Liza Gafori is a poet, composer, vocalist, and translator born in NYC of Iranian descent whose work reflects her Persian mystical roots as well as a deep reverence for nature. Her poetry has been published by Columbia University Press and Rattapallax Press and she has recently completed a manuscript of new translations of poems by Rumi and Hafez.

American Home

A Place To Call Home: Tradition, Style, And Memory In The New American House By Gil Schafer III (Author) & Eric Piasecki (Photographer), Published By Rizzoli, 2018.

For award-winning New York-based architect Gil Schafer, the most successful houses are the ones that celebrate the small moments of life, houses with timeless charm that are imbued with memory and anchored in a distinct sense of place. Essentially, Schafer believes a house is truly successful when the people who live there consider it home. It’s this belief, and Schafer’s rare ability to translate his clients’ deeply personal visions of how they want to live into a physical home that reflects those dreams, that has established him as one of the most sought-after, highly-regarded architects of our time. Wonder. Wisdom. Words. has long-time admired Schafer’s comfortable, gracious, and understated New England projects and collaborations with interior designers.

Detail Pages Of Interiors From A Place To Call Home: Tradition, Style, And Memory In The New American House.

In this big, beautiful new book, A Place To Call Home Schafer follows up his bestselling The Great American House, by exploring the ways in which place is fundamental to the idea of home, sharing his process, taking readers on a detailed tour of seven beautifully realized houses in a range of styles located around the country. Each in a unique place, and each with a character all its own. 250 lush, full color photographs of these seven houses and other never-before-seen projects, including exterior, interior, and landscape details, invite readers into Schafer’s world of comfortable classicism.

Detail Pages Of Interiors/Exteriors From A Place To Call Home: Tradition, Style, And Memory In The New American House.

A Place To Call Home: Tradition, Style, And Memory In The New American House, Schafer shows how traditional and classical principles can blend with a sense of place to create homes in a range of styles, all with the satisfying tensions of fancy and simple, past and present. “I am, to be sure, a classical architect,” says Schafer. “As important as a commitment to classicism has been to me, no less meaningful is the desire to create architecture that is effectively responsive to a set of circumstances.” While Schafer is absolutely a classical architect, he is in fact a modern traditionalist, and A Place To Call Home showcases how he interprets traditional principles for a multiplicity of architectural styles within contemporary ways of living. Creating a cohesiveness that shortchanges neither history nor modernity.

Oak Tree Recipe

Ever wonder how to grow Oak trees from acorns? It’s easy! Late Fall is the perfect time of year to collect acorns to start growing new Oak trees over the Winter. Late dropping acorns (October and November) are typically healthiest. A healthy acorn specimen suitable for growing an Oak tree is one that is plump with a cap that is loose and/or easily removed. A naturally split or cracked acorn is fine, but do not collect damaged or crushed acorns.

How To Grow Oak Trees From Acorns:

  1. After inspecting the collected acorns, place them in a mixture of 1/2 peat and 1/2 loose barley in a clear zip-lock plastic food storage bag. Do not crowd the acorns. They should be loose in the mixture and the bag should not be more than half-full.
  2. Seal the bag and store it in the refrigerator throughout the Winter. Periodically check the moisture level -it should be damp, but not wet. At some point during the winter, the acorns should split open and white sprouts should begin to appear and grow.

When To Plant Acorns:

  1. In early Spring (late March to early April), fill individual plant pots with clean potting soil. Place the sprouted acorns horizontally in the soil about 1 1/2 inches deep and water. Place the pots in a south-facing window or under an artificial light source and keep the soil moist.
  2. During the next few weeks, the acorns will sprout into a sapling, with a few tiny, yet visible Oak leaves. As the trees grow, transplant them into larger containers. Do not allow the trees to become root bound, or dried out.
  3. You may keep your trees in plant pots indefinitely, or until they have reached a desired size to plant outside. Before planting them in the ground, introduce the trees slowly to the outdoors by placing them in cooler areas such as on a porch, or in a shed or garage for a few days at a time. Transplant them outside in the early Fall before danger of frost.