The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

Vivid Life

 Shayne Traviss describes himself as “just an authentic guy doing my best to live my ultimate life and lead the way for others.”  He seems to walk the talk in both the personal and professional  realms.   He is a team player, believing in unity rather than separation. He invites people to play along regardless of history, baggage or belief in limitation. He helps them to view themselves beyond their victim tale, instead using it as a jumping off point for healing.                                                     

How do you live your bliss?

I live by bliss by constantly connecting to who I am at the core of my being. By reminding myself who I am and what my purpose is at every choice point and correcting my course if I am off path. I accept every experience as an opportunity for growth, to provide me with the wisdom I need for living a life filled with spiritual joy while being aware that life brings many experiences both light and dark and not to judge the experience or make it my goal to obtain a certain state but to stay present and enjoy each step along the way.

 What does it mean to have a vivid life?

To me having a vivid life means being clear on whom you are and what it is that you are here to achieve, in Yoga they would call this your Dharma or Life Purpose. You have attained spiritual clarity and are not obstructed by outer influence or judgment. You stand your ground and are not afraid to go confidently in the direction of your dreams.

You are more than a survivor of abuse and trauma; you are indeed a thriver who has reached out to help others. What got you through those dark nights of the soul and helped you to emerge triumphant?

As a survivor I always knew deep down in the depths of my soul that everything was going to be alright. I seen the light at the end of the tunnel and always had an inner knowing that there was something greater for me. I would pray and affirm to myself that all that I was going through was preparing me for something much greater and that through my challenges would come the resources for me to help others. 

Even as a child I felt within me the burning desire to serve people. Whenever someone needed me I was there, whether I was being the jokester to try and dry their tears or I offered them a listening ear, or shoulder to cry on. I felt it my calling to be there to show them the light even when I had little light to give.

I looked for the good in everyone, no matter if they raped, beat or called me names. I truly believed that they were just misguided souls that had been exposed to only darkness and only needed but a glimpse of light. 

Although life has brought me many challenges, I always knew that in the end I would be OK and that I needed to be because there was someone out there in the world that had it worse than me and needed my strength to stand beside them and show them the light, so that they too could discover the spiritual joy that is inherently all of ours to claim.

What do you find that people allow to get in the way of being fully expressed ?

What limits us from expressing ourselves fully is a silent self talk I call “Monkey Mind” which is usually based on stories and lies we have told ourselves or have been passed on by others. We are guided by lies, constant lies that we repeat to ourselves over and over for fear of becoming what we truly are. We are in our own way, afraid to shine our light for fear of being judged or not fitting in to the “norm” but what is normal anyway? and who’s the judge? I believe we all have a purpose on our planet and that purpose is to be the best version of you that you can possibly be and I believe that if you stand fully in that purpose you offer up the space for others to do the same and begin to create a planet that operates at its truest intention.

How do we stop the “monkey mind”?

We simply stop and give ourselves the opportunity through every experience to be silent and question our minds, cut through the story, the illusions and other people’s opinions and go deep within yourself to that place of inner knowing, to that little voice inside of us that says yes or no and really feel our truth, stand our ground and not be afraid to fully express the truth of who we are from the depths of our soul. 

You call yourself a visionary; what vision do you have for yourself and the people you serve?

My vision for myself and my vision for the people I serve is that we all come to the understanding that we are spiritual beings having a human experience and that this school we call earth is a place where we gather to learn about the truth of who we are, through every triumph or challenge, and that we hold a place where people are free to express their highest self and stand together as one for the greater good of the whole.

What is VividLife.me?

VividLife.me is an online inspirational resource center designed to help visitors all over the world in living their ultimate life.

We do this by combining over 150 conscious-minded visionaries and businesses who are interested in personal growth, spirituality, conscious living, environmental conservation and protection, and working towards being the absolute best that we can be.

Since VividLife.me began in June of 2009 we have been growing by leaps and bounds. Not only can you find engaging materials from bestselling authors Mike Robbins, Rick Hanson and Janice Taylor, but you can also find musings from New York Times bestselling author  Neale Donald Walsch and his wife, Poet Em Claire.  We have over 150 contributors and are always looking for more.

What you will find…

VividLife will connect you to the most current, optimistic and inspiring stories, news and research that pertain to opening your mind: eliminating “no’s”, “can-not’s” and “impossibles” and empowering you to achieve your ultimate life.  Whether through reading articles, watching inspiring video, or listening to enlightening radio interviews, visitors will have no shortage of media on VividLife.

Topics that are covered…

VividLife.me will be covering topics such as current health and wellness issues, spirituality, eco and green living, yoga, meditation, travel, conscious parenting, pets and everything that contributes to YOU living your ULTIMATE LIFE!

 I know it is a bit down the road, but please share about Global Oneness Day. (although I believe it can be everyday)

 Global Oneness Day was celebrated for the very first time on October 24th, 2010. Created as a way for the world to come together and celebrate our connection to each other by one of VividLife.me’s partners Humanity’s Team, an organization founded by global thought leader and New York Times Best Selling Author of “Conversations with God” Neale Donald Walsch, and is a venture I solely feel driven to champion as I am a strong believer that we are all one, all originating from the same source and an extension of that source on earth and therefore solemnly commit to spread the word, align and collaborate with others that have been awaken to the same truth.

www.vividlife.me

Twenty five Random Things

                                                                 As  I was doing research for interviewing Susan Piver who will be featured in the Living Their Bliss entry, I came upon something on her website that seemed like so much fun, that I decided to re-create it here. She called it Twenty five Random Things About Me.  Here are mine:

1. I can pick things up with my toes, as a result of having to do exercises for being pigeon toed and flat footed as a kid.  I have very happy feet now:)

2. According to my Mom (bless her Soul:), I spoke my first word at 6 months old and she would add “And you haven’t stopped since.”

3. When I was 7, I rode my bike without training wheels for the first time and when my father (bless his Soul too:) ran with me and let go of the back of the bike, I crashed into the tree in the front yard.  It didn’t stop me from getting back on the bike and riding again. That’s kind of how I live my life.

4. I have  had a series of fun jobs: including lifeguard/swimming instructor/swim team coach, greeting card text writer, clown named Feather who is a faerie, ice cream parlor scooper, doing organic skin care product demos and being an artist’s model.

5. I do alot of ‘emotional bungee jumping’, never having done it physically.

6. I have more books than any other type of item in my house. 

7. I interviewed The Dalai Lama in 2008, living out a 20 year journalistic dream.

8. My first pets were goldfish and turtles. My most recent were a Schnauzer-Terrier named Merlin and an Abyssinian named Amira. Both crossed the Rainbow Bridge a few years ago.

9. I have read Stranger In A Strange Land at least 30 times.

10. I have seen The Rocky Horror Picture Show more than 40 times.

11. I won second prize in a Rocky Horror Picture show contest in college, dressing up as the character Magenta, complete with bodice and fishnet stockings.

12. I swam a few marathons for charity in my teens.

13. I marched for the ERA  (for those too young to know….Equal Rights Ammendment) and always thought it was silly that it was defeated based on the idea that it would mean co-ed bathrooms rather than equal pay for equal work.

14. I met Philly area celebrities Gene London (was in the audience on his show)  and Sally Star  (and had my picture taken sitting on her horse) when I was a child.

15.  I was in a hula hoop contest around 12 or 13 and kept it going non-stop for 3 hours.

16. Chocolate is my drug of choice.

17. I played the wicked step mother in a 5th grade version of Cinderella.

18.  I played a ‘Mission Doll’ in Willingboro High’s version of Guys  and Dolls and I really wanted to be a ‘Hotbox Dancer’. Is that telling or what? Always the ‘good girl’ who wanted to be a little wilder:)

19.  I took 3 years of Latin in high school so I could become a better writer. Maybe it helped:)

20. I used a computer for the first time in grad school. Pre-k kids use them now.

21. I facilitate a workshop called Cuddle Party where people attend wearing p.j.’s

22. Mint chocolate chip is my favorite flavor of ice cream.

23. I received a white plume feather from a member of a New Year’s Day Mummer’s Parade string band when I was clowning at an event for Gilda’s Club.

24.  I am connected with 4400 people on facebook. I love networking and meeting kindred spirits.

25. Love is my religion.

See if you can enjoy creating your list…let us know what some are:)

For those who are thinking…”What the heck is the Mummer’s Parade?”  it is a Philadelphia New Year’s Day tradition.  Check out this sampler video: http://youtu.be/g18sY5t_Syk

Charge Of The Star Goddess

                                                                      

I was visiting my friend Cindy Greb this past weekend and found myself in her healing room that has the feeling of a haven, a cave of repose where one can come and let go of the cares of the world. Pine cones, drums, books, rocks gathered from her travels, photographs that she took on her travels and at home, candles, spiritual icons and a container of drying nettles, (I was particularly grateful for that, since she made tea later that night which helped with my allergies) among the elements. An interfaith minister; her spiritual practice is eclectic and it shows up in her art work and photography as well. Cindy is creating the beautiful cover art for my Bliss Mistress book. I had come over to do a photo shoot for the cover as well and had an amazing time playing in nature, peeking around trees, meandering through green fields and lying beneath a shower of flowers at Cindy’s expert instruction.

Afterward, I perused a table filled with various guidance cards with insightful messages and gorgeous imagery. Some bore vivid paintings of angels, nature beings, tree spirits, animals, elementals and Goddesses. One of Cindy’s areas of deep interest is The Divine Feminine and she teaches classes on the subject. I was drawn to  The Motherpeace Tarot cards: a circular deck embellished with beautifully  painted graphics that had messages from that Source. The words on the particular card that I drew from the deck delighted me, partly since I hadn’t seen them in awhile, but when I was initially introduced to them, they resonated with a sense of familiarity, as if I had taken them as vows in a previous incarnation.

Starhawk’s Charge of the Star Goddess

I who am the beauty of the green earth

And the white moon among the stars

And the mysteries of the waters,

I call upon your soul to arise and come unto me.

For I am the soul of nature that gives life to the universe.

From Me all things proceed and unto Me they must return.

Let my worship be in the heart that rejoices, for behold-

All acts of love and pleasure are My rituals.

Let there be beauty and strength, power and compassion,

Honor and humility, mirth and reverence within you.

And you who seek to know Me, know that your

Seeking and yearning will avail you not, unless

You know the Mystery:

For if that which you seek, you find not within yourself,

You will never find it without.

For behold, I have been with you from the beginning,

And I am that which is attained at the end of desire.

 From The Spiral Dance, by Starhawk.

From  Wikipedia:

Starhawk (born Miriam Simos) (June 17, 1951) is an American writer and anarchist activist.[1] She is well known as a theorist of Paganism, and is one of the foremost popular voices of ecofeminism. She is a columnist for Beliefnet.com and On Faith, the Newsweek/Washington Post online forum on religion. Starhawk’s 1979 book The Spiral Dance was one of the main inspirations behind the Neopagan movement.

Listen to a lovely musical version of the chant

http://youtu.be/KoYbdxbr4Cg

Peace Out and In

                                                                           

May 30 is recognized as Memorial Day in the U.S.; a day that honors those who have served in the military, as well as their families whose support has allowed them to do so. While I certainly hold them in my heart, I don’t glorify war. I prefer instead to honor peace and as well, those peaceful warriors who see unity rather than divisiveness, reconciliation rather than conflict.

As I was putting out a call to the Universe for inspiration for this week’s Bliss Blog’s entries, a response came instantaneously from my highly intuitive friend Liora Hill who must have been listening even as she lives 3 hours South of me in the Baltimore area. It is on a subject near and dear to my heart.

This was her email:

PEACE
“Harmonious Relations”.
“A state that is calm and tranquil”.
“The absence of mental stress and anxiety”.
“A treaty to cease hostilities”.
“The state prevailing during the absence of war”.
“Peacemaker- someone who keeps peace”.
Definitions from the dictionary.
Peace is a virtue we all possess. Many times it has to be activated, acted on and expressed. The more we do it, it becomes a way of life. We then are Peace! Wherever we go, Peace Is!
Enjoy the Sistas singing
Let There Be Peace”
Sweet Honey in the Rock™ – Let There Be Peace
http://youtu.be/QrXB3xD8NRI

When I consider the idea of peace, I have come to learn that it, like most other things, is an inside job. No one gives it to me and no one has the ability to take it from me. When I have lost my footing and gotten toppled over in a less than peaceful moment, I know that I can regain it, by allowing serene thoughts to flow through my ever so buzzy mind. I have been known to disturb my own peace with images of shoulda-woulda -coulda, what if and if only?  I have been at war with myself when battling with the armored soldiers of criticism and judgment. I have sacrificed myself on the altar of self deprecation.  I have thrown myself on the sword of separation. Unless I am peace with myself and my various ‘warring factions’, I am unable to have peaceful relations with anyone, so fraught with hard and jangly energy am I. It is easy to see ‘enemies’ when I am in separation mode and easier to see compatriots when I am in unity consciousness. In truth, there is  ‘no one out there’…we are all us.

Peace is not some lofty ideal somewhere out there. It is born in each moment, each thought that crosses our minds. Are we harboring war-like thoughts that pound away at us, and by extension all of our relationships or are we holding out our hands in acceptance of the ‘other’?  Are we putting out wounding weaponry with our words or are we offering an olive branch? Collectively, our thoughts are powerful.  Are we willing to be that ‘greater force for good in the world? The choice, as always, is ours.

Likely one of the first songs on the subject that I was introduced to  is Let There Be Peace on Earth. (Seymour Miller & Jill Jackson, “Let There Be Peace on Earth,” 1955)

My friends Peter Moses and his lovely wife Jackie Hurley revised the lyrics which we sing at the close of services at Circle Of Miracles, an interfaith community that I attend. I like them even better than the original, because they speak of the present moment awareness and experience of peace.

“Now there is peace on Earth and it has begun with me.

Now there is peace on Earth, the peace that was meant to be.

With God as Creator, united all are we.

Let us walk with each other, in peace and harmony.

Peace has begun with me, and this is the moment NOW

With every breath I take, now this is my joyous vow.

I take each moment and live each moment, in peace eternally.

Now there is peace on Earth and it has begun with me.”

James Twyman, known as The Peace Troubador who has traveled worldwide, sings a powerful tribute to peace, beckoning all to the table where there is enough for everyone.

May Peace Prevail on Earth

http://youtu.be/xwgLldU9_zs

My friend Deb Chamberlin co-wrote a song with her husband Robert Wynn that is my favorite peace anthem called The Time Has Come. She has performed it with a talented group of Philly local performers whose enthusiam spills forth. Can you see them singing this at the U.N. and the White House?  I can. 

www.thetimehascome.com

Some peace quotes to plant the seeds in your own heart…

We look forward to the time when the Power of Love will replace the Love of Power.  Then will our world know the blessings of peace.  ~William Ewart Gladstone
 
If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.  ~Mother Teresa
Peace cannot be achieved through violence, it can only be attained through understanding.  ~Ralph Waldo Emerson
 
 

 

You cannot shake hands with a clenched fist.  ~Attributed to both Golda Meir and Indira Gandhi

I think that people want peace so much that one of these days government had better get out of their way and let them have it.  ~Dwight Eisenhower

 
Maybe we should develop a Crayola bomb as our next secret weapon.  A happiness weapon.  A beauty bomb.  And every time a crisis developed, we would launch one.  It would explode high in the air – explode softly – and send thousands, millions, of little parachutes into the air.  Floating down to earth – boxes of Crayolas.  And we wouldn’t go cheap, either – not little boxes of eight.  Boxes of sixty-four, with the sharpener built right in.  With silver and gold and copper, magenta and peach and lime, amber and umber and all the rest.  And people would smile and get a little funny look on their faces and cover the world with imagination.  ~Robert Fulghum
 
 
 
 Circle of Miracles www.circleofmiracles.org

 

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posted 10:24:20pm Sep. 18, 2014 | read full post »

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posted 10:10:09pm Sep. 16, 2014 | read full post »

Enjoy Every Moment
Feeling emotionally raw at the moment, having just returned from a day of honoring my friend Delane Lipka. I had written about another extraordinary day in a previous Beliefnet article called In the Garden of Eden that described a gathering of kindred spirits that had been organized by Delane. For d

posted 10:03:50pm Sep. 15, 2014 | read full post »

Cardia-versary
This morning marks 3 months since I experienced the kind of pain that cracks you open and has you revealing the emotional viscera that had long lay dormant. Literally at this moment, I was captured by the symptoms of a heart attack- searing heart burn pain, jaw tightness and wringing wet sweats. I s

posted 10:56:19am Sep. 12, 2014 | read full post »

Cosmic Coincidence
My definition of cosmic coincidence are those events that have me shaking my head in bewildered awe, asking "What are the chances that such a thing could happen?"  My answer is always the same. "100%, since it occurred." It is that encounter with just the right person, hearing a song on the radio r

posted 10:05:23pm Sep. 10, 2014 | read full post »


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