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The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

Like A Handprint On My Heart

 

Although I have never seen the musical Wicked (it’s on my bucket list), one song in particular echoes so clearly with the ways that I feel about the people who have touched my life in the past half century. I remind folks that everyone they now know and love was once a stranger and that there are new people every day waiting to meet them and vice versa. I consider the thousands of folks with whom I cross paths each year, some in cyberspace and some face to face and my mind reels at the idea of overlapping soul circles. On facebook, it becomes an exponential process, since not only am I connected to 5000 people, but anytime I post something on someone else’s page, their friends see it and if they pass it on, their friends see it….. and it becomes like the Herbal Essences commercial…”She told two friends and they told two friends and so on and so on.” I treasure these relationships and welcome kindred spirits.

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I am also fascinated with the six degrees of separation concept, that each person on the planet can track their connection to someone else with no more than six people between them. In my case, it sometimes one degree of separation, since I often know someone, with no one between us. Such was the case tonight at a cozy gathering spot in Doylestown, PA called The Zen Den. There I met Marcia and as we spoke, she shared that she had been taking yoga classes with Maria Starr, a treasured friend whom I have known since the late 1980’s. I met Maria when my then husband Michael introduced me to her as he was friends with her then husband Bruce. As it turns out, Maria was also a wonderful vegetarian cook for someone with whom I was to become close friends later; Sandy Levenson. Sandy connected me with Kathy Tooley who in turn opened the door to her studio and heart where I met a group of women who now call themselves ‘Yoga chicks’. Glad to be flapping my wings as one of them.

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Around the same time that I met Maria, I became friends with a delightful 14 year old who I met at the home of the woman who had introduced Michael and me. Our friend Ute Arnold hosted open house events and Ruth Anne Dilley (now Wood) was there accompanying her mother Catherine Werth.  “Ruth the Poet” (since she wrote such profound poetry) is what we called this precocious teenager who is now a mature 30 something year old coach, writer and interviewer. When Ruth and her husband Jason decided to marry, I officiated at their wedding.

In  September of 1979, I set foot in a single story building along a busy highway in the college town of Glassboro, NJ. Little did I know that nearly 33 years later, I would maintain friendships that have existed for more than half my life. Although we are all over the country, our hearts remain connected and although three of our circle of friends are now on the Other Side, we are still family of choice who revel in each others’ joys and support each other in times of challenge. Together, Inc. was the name of the  counseling center and it is a perfect reflection of  the impact we have had and continue to have on each others’ hearts and souls. As I am writing this, my friend Gina Foster is about to become a a grandma for the second time since her daughter Amy Foster Riggs is soon to give birth to her new little one. I remember when SHE was the new bambino.

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As a result of writing my Bliss Book, I have connected with my wondrous editor Pam Maliniak and my soul sistah Joan Schaublin, who invited me to publish it with Balboa Press. Because I know them…..the book is dancing its way out into the world.

I could go on marveling at these overlapping soul circles, but it really could take all night to enumerate them all. Suffice it to say, that they have all left handprints on my heart and changed my life for good.

http://youtu.be/XScNGy5y5TE For Good from Wicked-Kristen Chenoweth and Idina Menzel

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Kindness Boomerang

 

This morning I saw a beautiful video that called out to be shared as powerfully as the need to do what is portrayed here. Imagine a day in which you see opportunities to do a good turn and could step back and watch the ripple effect on the world around you. I’ve heard it called Random Acts of Kindness or  Pay It Forward, as was evidenced in the movie by that same name, but this can be done simply in a spontaneous way, at the speed of thought. Paying the toll for someone behind you, leaving an extra generous tip for your server in a restaurant, helping someone carry a package, open a door, find their car keys, offer a hug, a listening ear…all are fair game. See how many you can come up with.

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A few years ago, I was driving in Philadelphia with a friend, on rain slicked cobblestone Germantown Avenue (Chestnut Hill), took a skid and ran the car up on a curb, narrowly missing a wall in front of a church. As I sent forth a reallllyyy fervent prayer, I felt unseen hands guide us to safety. Unfortunately, my right rear tire didn’t fare as well as my friend Pat (a.ka. Harmony) and I did and it required changing. As we took turns holding an umbrella, we struggled to get the tire and jack out of the truck, getting wetter by the minute. Again I sent out a call, this time for an angel to assist us with task of getting back on the road without becoming drowned rats. Within 5 minutes, a young man pulled up in a white car behind us. Smiling, he went to work, changed the tire as we held the umbrella over him. While he was doing his Mitzvah (Hebrew for ‘good deed’), he was telling us how his parents had taught about being of service. I smiled since mine had modeled that for me as well. When he was finished, I offered him money and he declined, asking me to pay it forward. We hugged him and went on our way. Harmony and I looked at each other and smiled knowingly that we had indeed been sent our angel. I don’t recall how I paid it forward that day, but I do it daily, knowing that there is more than enough of everything to go around.

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In times of crisis, people tend to come together to take care of each other. Flood, famine, terrorist attacks…seem to draw folks together, having them reach into their pockets and their hearts. What if we just did it naturally, all the time, every day? There are so many people on the planet who feel lonely, un-needed, unwanted, hopeless. I’m convinced that some of the mental health challenges people face come from believing that they don’t matter. Everyone has something to offer. How about you?

In the video, you can see how the kindness shown comes winging back at the originator of the loving act, just as a boomerang tossed out, returns to the hand that lofted it outward.

http://www.godvine.com/Kindness-Boomerang-This-is-What-Life-is-All-About-966.html The music is by Hassidic Hip Hop Reggae Rapper Matisyahu which is a beautiful juxtaposition since the film was created by a Christian organization called God Vine(:

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Angels In Our Midst

                                    

When you hear the word ‘angel’, what image comes to mind?  Likely that of a glowing, winged being, adrift on a cloud, playing a heavenly harp or singing in a celestial choir. Not quite ‘real’, nebulous, the stuff of fairy tales or hallucinations seen only in the minds of those who are struggling with mental illness.

 

A Reader’s Digest story reported the following: “Survey after survey shows public belief in angels is as strong
as ever in this country. A Harris Interactive poll in November 2005 found thatnearly 7 in 10 Americans believe. Gallup reported in 2004 that 78 percent believe, compared to 72 percent in 1994 and 54 percent in 1978″.

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“It was in the early 1990s that angels truly seized the nation’s spiritual consciousness. Almost overnight, it seemed, these heavenly creatures were everywhere. There were angel festivals, angel craft conventions and angel books
by the hundreds. Hollywood got into the act with Touched by an Angel on TV and Angels in the Outfield at the multiplex”.

A TIME Magazine story in 2008
reported:

“More than half of all Americans believe they have been helped by a guardian angel in the course of their lives, according to a new poll by the Baylor University Institute for Studies of Religion. In a poll of 1700 respondents, 55% answered affirmatively to the statement, “I was protected from harm by a guardian angel.” The responses defied standard class and denominational assumptions about religious belief; the majority held up regardless of denomination, religion or education”.

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Three angel ‘experts’, each knowledgeable, grounded women, have remarkably similar experiences and ways of expressing their own angelic encounters.

 

Cecily Channer is the author of The Complete Idiot’s Guide To Connecting With Your Angels, which is far more than a compendium of angelic lore.  It serves as a primer on many of the subjects that might be considered on the fringes, but are really quite grounded and practical, setting the stage for tapping into angelic guidance.

 

Channer describes angels asmade of pure energy and are eternal spiritual beings sent directly from God. God made angels to serve as one of our greatest heavenly resources. As long as our desires are aligned with God’s will
and our individual soul purpose, the angels will work tirelessly to help us, guide us, and intervene on our behalf. The angels are in service to raise our consciousness, help us with our spiritual growth, keep us on track, and assist
us with every aspect of our daily life.”

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With finely honed intuitive skills,  Channer is able to “connect to their energy and they work with me to heal, guide and
inspire others and myself. When I tune into someone else’s guardian angels to give that person guidance, communication happens in different ways. Sometimes the angels show me a quick vision or symbol in my mind’s eye, other times I hear words telepathically, or I just instantly know a bit of information to pass on to my student or client. Occasionally, angels will show themselves to me, but only if it is appropriate or necessary for a higher purpose.”

Her first exposure to angel communication was through her teacher Tina Michelle. “I was amazed by the information she gave me in a reading and decided to invite the angels into my life. Wonderful synchronicities started
showing up in my life. A couple months later I went to a workshop by Doreen Virtue, felt angelic energy around me, and within a month’s time I had a profound and life changing angel visitation. I then had confirmation that I was
to continue working with the angels and became a Certified Angel Therapy Practitioner through Doreen Virtue in Summer 2002.”

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Based in South Jersey, Kathy Milano offers Angel Healing Sessions, Angelic Harmony eCourse, and meditation CDs. Trained by Doreen Virtue, as well, she is an Angel Therapy Practitioner®

She expressed; “Across spiritual traditions, angels are described as messengers of the Divine, emanations of love, and helpers for humanity. In my communications with angels, they consistently remind us that they are composed of Divine love, light, and intelligence and are here to freely share these Divine gifts with us. They often call themselves “cells in the Body of Love” and invite us to remember that we, too, are made of that same Love. Angels are representatives of Divine Love who wish to empower us to remember our own worth, see the light within each person,
and live in joyful harmony.

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She speaks of a seeming serendipitous encounter that led her to her current relationship with the angels, which  “began when I received a mailing from Hay House for their “I Can Do It” conference. I noticed books about angels by Doreen Virtue and intuitive living by Sonia Choquette. My curiosity led me to purchase these books, travel to attend the Hay House conference, and ultimately wind my way through many books, workshops, personal explorations, and time spent studying with Doreen Virtue, Sonia Choquette, and others. I never planned to become an Angel Therapy Practitioner®, share messages from the angels, or teach others how to open intuitively to connect with angels. As I remembered my natural intuitive gifts, my life and work shifted to honor my soul purpose of helping others to remember that they are made of Love and fully capable of communing with the Divine. By the way, I never again received a mailing from Hay House after this initial “invitation.”

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Milano explains the interest in angels in this way; “People long for connection with the Divine, however that is defined
for them. We long for communion with something greater than ourselves, just as we long for meaningful connection with other people. The angels have a tremendous appeal as they can be understood from various spiritual belief
systems and also as nondenominational beings of light. The angels honor all sacred traditions and spiritual belief systems as all paths have the potential to lead to the remembrance of our personal connection to the One Divine Source.”

 

Candy Danzis  refers to herself as The Mainstream Mystic and is the creator of several CD packages, including “Angel Alignment™ Meditations”, “Cord Cutting and Release” and the “One Minute Meditation™” (OMM).

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She says that angels are “not fairy godmothers with fairy wands that bop us on the head and grant our wishes; rather they are present to help us create that which we truly desire to create in this lifetime and to remember that we are one with God and all beings. Many students have asked me what’s in it for the Angels.  The Angelic Realm is also growing and expanding as we are in our human existence.  So truly we are helping them by allowing them to help us. It’s a win/win for all of us.

Danzis delineates between the various categories in the Angelic Realm.  “The first connection is our very own
Guardian Angel (s) The next group or realm of Angels is the Archangels.  These Angels work as over-lighting or manager angels. They each have a special area of service such as healing, protection, strength or forgiveness.  They assist our very own Guardian Angels and all of humanity. Angels are not inhibited by time
space constraints they can be with many people at one time so we never need to worry that we are taking them away from some more important purpose.  It is not necessary to know the Archangels names or areas of service. Simply ask for their help and the right Archangel will come to assist you.”

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How to engage with angels

Cecily Channer

*Ask

Angels cannot intrude on our free will, so we must ask them to assist us. You may be as formal or informal as you like when you request their help. These heavenly helpers will answer to a prayer, a thought, or a verbal cry for help in an instant.

 

*Partner with Your Angels

The angels are willing to assist us, but they are not here to do all the work. Although these heavenly helpers delight in making us happy, if we expect them to be like Santa Claus or a genie in a bottle granting us all our wishes, we will be sorely disappointed.

It is not enough just to ask for things; we have to partner with the angels and do our part. The angels can put us on the path to success, but ultimately it is up to us to take the first step.

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*Trust

Trust that the angels are working on your behalf. In cultivating trust, we remember that God and the angels love us unconditionally and always want the best for us. No sincere request or prayer goes unanswered. There is always a grander plan than we can imagine or conceive of.

 

*Release

Surrendering is an essential part of the process. After we do what we can on our end, the angels want us to release our problems and wishes to them. It is then that we can take comfort in the fact that we do not need to know everything and that we have done all we can. The quicker we let go, the quicker we see results.

 

*Allow and Receive

It is a well-known fact that when we get in “the zone” we can do great things. The zone is really a position of allowing and receiving. An important ingredient in getting what we want is allowing ourselves to take in all the goodness the universe has to offer.

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An angel’s job is to give us what we need, but we must believe it is our inherent right to accept all the wonderful things that they bring to us. Allowing calls for us to acknowledge that we are deserving and worthy of receiving our desires.

 

*Thank Your Angels

Remember to thank your angels when you receive their assistance. Only when we are grateful for each blessing we receive will we be in the flow to receive other blessings.

 

Candy Danzis:

 

The simple answer here is ASK! The asking can come from a prayer to God or asking the Angels directly, either way works. We are always honoring God by asking these beings for help as they were created to assist us. Not asking the Angels for help is like having a personal assistant but never giving them any work to do and trying to do the job all by yourself. We all have freewill, so the Angels do need our permission to assist us. Say it, think it, pray it, write it or sing it; any method works.

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The next step after asking is to pay attention. The Angels will use any way possible to connect with us, so look for the signs. The Angels often use our “connection” gifts of seeing, hearing feeling or knowing to deliver messages to us.  Sometimes the signs or help come from books, media, a friend or a person that says just the right thing at the right time. The last step is to act on the signs or information the Angels give you.  If you miss the sign or feel confused, simply ask again and the Angels will do their best to make the response clearer for you. So the steps to engage the Angels are:

Ask, Listen and Watch for signs; then take guided action.

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Kathy Milano:

Invite the angels into your life:

Create the space for a sacred relationship simply by opening your heart, centering in the love of the Divine, and inviting these Divine messengers to enter our lives. Do it your way whether that involves a simple prayer, a letter, or an elaborate ceremony.

 

Ask for what you desire:

Move into stillness as your Higher Self always helps you clarify what you desire for yourself, others, and the world. Express your request in whatever way feels most natural to you.

 

Trust, Allow, and Pay Attention:

The angels are expert communicators, so trust that they can respond. Simply move through your day in a state of relaxed attention and notice internal and external signs.

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Take Inspired Action:

Once you discern the loving, empowering guidance of the angelic realm, act on it!

Express Gratitude:

Amplify this process with delightful anticipation, grateful receipt of assistance, and joyful application. Playfully
practice these steps and cultivate your own angelic partnerships.

 

Candy Danzis  www.CandyDanzis.com

 

Kathy Milano  www.kathymilano.com

One of my favorite angel songs comes from my friend Lew Doty called 10,000 Angels http://youtu.be/utofJxaTR1A

 www.lewdoty.com

 

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With Abandon

 

Somewhere in the past ten years, I wrote a manifesto of sorts, called What I Learned About Love, as a Valentine’s Day gift to my friends. A few of the items were these:

“Love without limits begins with self love.”

“Love never dies even if the person does.”

“No one will ever love you enough to make up for you not loving yourself.”

“Love with adbandon without fear of being abandoned.”

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I pull them out on occasion as a teaching tool for workshops and to remind myself how I choose to live. This being human brings with it ample opportunity for that refresher course. How often do we encounter situations in which we hide our light, our passions, or dreams so as to ‘protect’ ourselves?  This past week, I gave myself the gift of that message, as it came through my friend Arlene Curley. I am going to be teaching at the center that she and her husband Jim steward in beautiful Bucks County, PA called Greenshire Arts Consortium. As we were putting together the promo material, I sent her the delightful photo that my friend Cindy Greb had taken for my book jacket. I am playfully peeking out from behind an ancient tree in my friend Durwood’s yard, butterfly wings tipping out. My leg is extended behind me as if I am ready to take off.  I thought that it represented the free flight on which I was embarking. When Arlene looked at it, she asked: “Do you want you standing behind the tree? Or do you have a full-forward face – presenting your entire self to the world!”  Gulp. Being a highly intuitive woman, it seemed that Arlene was able to see into my soul as she also encouraged revising my bio. As a career journalist, I have had the honor of interviewing notables in the fields of transformation, medicine, entertainment, the arts, politics and peace. I had always included their names as if somehow THEY gave me credibility. Arlene reminded me that my experience was sufficient and that I was incorporating what I had learned from  hundreds of encounters in the past 24 years and THAT was affirmation enough. WHEW!

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I believe in the maxim “We teach what we need to learn.” and this is certainly a life lesson for me as I encourge people to come out, come out wherever they are and show their beautiful faces to the world.  Although I am doing so more readily, there are times when I retreat to the safety of the tree. Being public means being vulnerable. When I interview folks, I take the moral high road and don’t share information about them that is tabloid-esque. I recall interviewing Nell Newman who is the daughter of Joanne Woodward and Paul Newman. She and her proud papa had just founded Newman’s Own Organics. She laughingly told me a story about something that happened in their home. I felt it was a bit too private a glance into their lives and I asked her if she was sure she wanted that in the article. She thanked me and it never went in. I desire that same respect for my work and my life.  I do want to be fully seen and known for who I am, realizing that being on the ‘big stage of life’ brings with it people’s interpretation of who I am. I endeavor to be low maintenance, easy to work with, open and receptive in all areas of my life.

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I grew up in a family in which expressions of love were everywhere. My wise parents knew that there was always enough to go around and that by sharing it generously, it would grow. As a result, they had many friends. That sense of abundance has served me throughout my life and yet, there are times when I have felt embarressed by effusive expression of love winging back at me. My friend Deremiah *CPE  used the term The Law Of Reciprocity last week; the idea that what we put out into the world, returns to us, like a boomerang. My father called it “One hand washes the other.”  Although the idea isn’t ‘give to get’, but when we offer our gifts and talents to the world, it can’t help but return to us, perhaps not directly from the person to whom we have given, but most certainly from the true Source.

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What is that you are called on to do with abandon?  I choose to do most things that way. One of my favorite shows was Northern Exposure; this quirky, creatively genius series about ‘life, the universe and everything’, explored relationships, physics and metaphysics, life and death, light and dark, fantasy and fear. I was perusing old episodes last night and re-disovered this clip….I invite you to dance with abandon and may that offer you the courage to live the other aspects of your life in that glorious way…

http://youtu.be/Lx3NN_AFV5E  Dance With Abandon from Northern Exposure

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