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The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

New World

 

From the first words “We are embarking on a sacred journey. Walk beside me. Walk beside your true Self. Walk beside your guides. Walk beside your angels. Walk with God into the realm of waking dreams,”,  classically trained Soprano Elisa Brown ushers you into a new world, which is the title of her co-created CD. Partnering with Grammy Award winning producer Barry Goldstein and a host of  talented musicians with phenomenal credentials, including Goldstein,  Brown is a guide into a realm of serenity, spirituality and sensuality. The intial piece is entitled Invocation, which gathers the listener in with misty beckoning fingers. Unable to resist,  the listener is slow danced  into the Cullins of Rhum, a traditional Celtic piece. As it ends, one can hear the twittering birds as a segueway into the mystical So Much More that contains a zen chant and the reminder that  “We are the love, we are the light, we are the vision in the night….we are so much more, than our locked up prison doors. We have always held the key. Now the door is open to set ourselves free.”  The etheric image on the CD cover shows Brown holding a glowing key. A child’s sweet voice echoes those lyrics at the end of the song, and then merges with Brown’s.  Music For Life is a Latin influenced hip swaying offering.  “Now’s the time to sing with joy, with music for life.” Namaste Fever  (the Sanskrit word which has several translations, my favorite being “the Highest or Divine in me, recognizes and honors the Highest or Divine in you.”) is a repetitive chant that burrows its way into the listener’s heart and beckons the feet to dance. This would be an ideal song for an improv movement session, as overlapping voices and instrumentation weave sonic silk scarves. One of the most exquisite versions of Ave Maria follows with the intermixing of the words “Mother of the light, fill my heart, hear my prayers.”  with the well known lyrics sung in Italian as Brown reaches operatic heights. Butterfly has a lullabye quality to it, as it invites the listener to “dance under the moon” as does the winged wonder named in the song.  By far, my favorite song on this CD (so hard to choose, though) is the anthemic Through the Eyes of God that I can  envision being performed by large choirs. “Through the eyes of God, I have learned to see, that I am everything and everything is me…I am the song within your heart and I’m waiting just to sing.”  The title piece New World has the feeling of wandering in a forest and entering into a peaceful glade in which “a new world, that we’re creating, weaving the spark within the night….to dance and celebrate our light”, is one to be desired and sustained. Fiddle-led Wiggle Your Toes is a lilting piece  “Celebrate your life with love. Be the joy that you desire. Wiggle your toes in the water…embrace the joy within you and be grateful all the while.”  New World closes with Namaste Integration, a far more peaceful chant than its predecessor that could easily accompany the yoga posture of svasana that closes out most practices as it carries the listener on a magic carpet of sound.

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As I listened to Brown’s voice, I was reminded at times of Julie Andrews. No spoonful of sugar, this CD. Instead, New World is a rich soup pot of world music flavors and textures that nourish the listener…body, mind and spirit.

www.elisabrownmusic.com

www.barrygoldsteinmusic.com

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Lost and Found

Today I encountered a techno challenge that I know will resolve itself in the perfect way and with great grace and ease. A few hours ago, I wasn’t so sure. I had gone to the gym, toting with me, my backpack that contained my wallet, headset and cellphone, all of which I checked to make sure accompanied me both into and of the building. I was on my way out the door long about 6:30 to meet up with friends for dinner. I felt around in the backpack once again and……no phone.  Growling, grumping, scrambling around my house and car, asking my son to call my number…no brand new iphone4 s answered. Adam reminded me that getting upset wouldn’t help me find it. He has to pick this time to throw my own words of advice at me, as I have said the same thing when items of his have gone missing. I called the gym and asked them to keep an eye out for it. I drove there and looked around the parking lot, checked the street here, no luck. “Ok, universe,”, I called out….”Angels, St. Anthony, whoever can offer assistance, please help me find my AWOL device.” and then drove to AT &T, praying all the while that I had the good sense to purchase a protection plan.  I had and the salesman was one of those angels who helped to pave the way for a replacement and an itsy bitsy go phone to tide me over in the meantime. Still holding out for the likelihood that the phone will show itself…come out, come out wherever you are.

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A few weeks ago, my yahoo account had gotten hacked and I was unable to get back in and retrieve my email addresses, nearly 2000 of them that I had collected over the years. So I am rebuilding that list now. The question I ask, since this is too coincidental not to have a meaning or purpose, what the heck is this about?  I firmly believe that things happen for a reason. Am I too dependent on technology?  Perhaps I am and this is Spirit’s way of reminding me to tap into the heavenly hotline. So I shall. I am considering the idea that I need to feel more connected with those around me without relying on wires and fiber-optics. Maybe it is telling me to connect to my intuition. Still seeing the phone back in my hands, easily and effortlessly.

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In the meantime, I continue to trust the highest possible outcome, grateful for whatever it is. Magical thinking? Miracle mindedness? I’m all for it <3

A friend suggested this prayer for assistance from The Koran.

By the Glorious Morning Light – sung by Jerry Forman http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ghc4H7KF2Gw

 

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Plan For The Week

 

Since today is Monday, it made sense to begin this week’s Bliss Blog with some intention setting. What is an intention?  It seems to me that it is far beyond a goal or a resolution. Goals may feel daunting and most people break resolutions within a short time of stating them. When I set an intention, it is a full sensory experience. I see it, feel it, hear it, taste it, touch it and smell it as if it is occurring in the here and now. I read recently that a visionary is someone who experiences something they desire in that way even if it hasn’t yet manifested in a physical form. One intention that I create each morning before rising from the covers is to “have extraordinary experiences and connect with amazing people.” and each day I do. I have no clue some of the time, how it will unfold, but unfold it does, like fresh, clean sheets drying in a warm breeze on a clothes line. Sometimes things play out word for word and action for action as I have imagined them and others are such sweet surprises that I find myself laughing and smiling like a child with a new toy.

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This weekend was one such experience and it spilled over into today. My 54th birthday was Saturday and into my home came phenomenal family and friends from all aspects of my life. I had wanted to bring them together so they could enjoy the magnificence of who they all are with each other too. All are creative souls-musicians, artists, writers, healers, therapists, yogis and yoginis, teachers, health care practitioners, singers, drummers, dancers….and blend they did, like the unique and varied cuisines that presented themselves at the table too. All kinds of fascinating conversations took place, a massage chain, music offered by my friends Rick Denzien and Debra Lee (Lyra Project). Later they were joined by my friend Rich whose guitar mastery and recollection of forgotten and sometimes mangled song lyrics were helped along by Fran’s handy dandy ipad.  My son Adam made hearty  and savory veggie chili and the densely decadent, apple, cinnamon, walnut, pecan, drizzled with brown sugar birthday cake. For many hours, my house was filled to overflowing with folks who laughed, danced, munched, talked, sang, played, hugged and cuddled. Not surprising that I attract snuggly souls into my world. Two days later it still resonates with those magical feelings as we were all swimming in love soup.

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On Sunday, sensationally sleep deprived, I rose to get breakfast together for my overnight guests, and then headed out to another friend’s Goddess themed birthday gathering. Fabulous women joined Carole Tollen who calls herself the Comedian Medium, gathered to honor her. A wildly outrageous woman who knows who she is and is darn proud of it, really out there in the world, Carole is a role model for me.

Today, I am immersed in writing while listening to another type of music…the sound of two year old Colin, who is the son of my own son Adam’s girlfriend Rochelle who are visiting. Elmo has been entertaining him on tv, setting his little feet to dancing. We were just blowing bubbles (than you, Carole for the purple bubble wand since it made a 2 year old, 25 year old and 54 year old very happy) and Colin’s face lit up every time they issued forth from the wand) and he called out “Bubbles, bubbles, bubbles,” taking great delight in chasing and popping them.

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What if you decided to live your life as an exclamation point?  Amazing! Fabulous!  Extraordinary! Wonderful! Magnificent! Incredible! How would you interact with the people and experiences you encounter?

To all those who so enhance my life:

http://youtu.be/ZN3E9Yyd1HA Thank You For Being A Friend by Andrew Gold

 

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Another Turn Around The Sun

 

This morning, 54 years ago, my mother was likely looking like a Jiffy Pop container, belly out to here, ready to burst. It was the day before I was about to make my appearance in this earthly incarnation. She and my father, who had married two years earlier (the very next day-October 14th) were eager to meet the first of their two children. A red haired munchkin got herself born 2 1/2 years later. The joke in our family was that among dark haired family members and the occasional blondie, my sister Jan must have been the proverbial ‘milkman’s daughter’. The truth is, she WAS, since for many years, that was my father’s profession. When I was a child, I used to say that I was born the day before my parents got married, to which they would rush to follow up with “Two years later,” so as to avoid embaressment.

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My mother  loved to tell the story of my arrival. She and my father had gone out to dinner at a Chinese restaurant, which is actually the cuisine they were enjoying on their first date when after cracking open her fortune cookie, my mother’s fortune read “You’d better prepare your Hope Chest”. Clearly, the Universe knew what it was doing and they married the following year. After dinner, she had some decadent ice cream dessert. Within a few hours, (as my friend Teddi who is anticipating the birth of her little girl as I am writing these words, referred to it in her own gestational process) we were doing “the uterine mambo”. She was rushed to the hospital and then things settled down a bit. Walking the halls of what was then called Lying-In Hospital as the maternity ward of Pennsylvania Hospital (the first hospital in the U.S.), founded by Benjamin Franklin and Thomas Bond in 1751, she stopped in front of the window to look at the newborns. Many were active, except one tiny boy. A doctor was standing over his crib, changing a diaper, and as soon as he took it off (or put it on, I forget which), he started to wail. At that moment, my mother laughed, her water broke and shortly afterward, 5:34 p.m. on October 13, 1958, I arrived on stage. I’ve often wondered if my bizarre sense of humor, ability to laugh at strange circumstances, comfort being out front, loving Chinese food and ice cream, was connected with the experiences surrounding my birth.

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So, as I type these words, the morning prior to my birthday, I am filled with a mixture of feelings. I am listening to music that I will be reviewing next week for The Bliss Blog. The CD is called New World by Elisa Brown, produced by the Grammy Award winning Barry Goldstein. Ave Maria is issuing forth from the operatically trained Ms. Brown.  “Mother of the Light, fill my heart, fill my soul…” transposed over the classic lyrics. Wondering what Mary was musing about the day before the birth of her Divine Child. Did she know that he would be a world changer?  Does any mother know that?  I imagine that if she is consciously aware of the awesome responsibility of raising a child, and not simply going through the motions, then she does have some inkling.

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I look back at the last year, since turning 53 (an age that was nearly incomprehensible when I was a child…it felt so OLD) and marvel at the re-births that occur daily. Book published, touring in support of….writing, teaching, leaving a long time full time job, adjusting to being an ‘adult orphan’, missing my parents, becoming the family matriarch, meeting phenomenal souls, questioning nearly every aspect of my existence, seeing almost nothing at face value, diving deep, renovating my home and my life, clearing out, de-cluttering, making room for the new.

Tomorrow I will gather with friends from those lovely overlapping soul circles, I so treasure and celebrate our connection. That’s how I see birthday parties. When I turned 50, friends had given me a party at which they showered me with loving sentiments that I couldn’t fully absorb and they bounced off my teflon shields.  My prayer is that this year, I can truly let it all in and immerse myself in love soup. In honor of my mother and father who I know will be there with us in Spirit, perhaps there will be Chinese food and ice cream…most certainly laughter.

www.youtube.com/watch?v=mIRtrR7LW7g Happy Birthday by Tom Chapin

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