The Bliss Blog

The Bliss Blog

Hug From The Heart


Hugging is an easy, free way of showing that you care. I have a friend whose birth name is Larry but his ‘real name’ is HUGMAN. Every day he hugs bunches of people. Larry has two rules when it comes to hugging.

  1. Always ask first.

  2. Always be the last one to let go.

When Larry hugs, it is as if nothing and no one else exists in that moment, Connect heart to heart. Embrace life full out! is the website for another hugmeister….Juan Mann who courageously took to the streets…armed with..well..his arms and loving heart. He inspired me to do the same a few years ago, with my friend Ondreah, in the suburban Bucks County, PA town along the Delaware River, called New Hope. There, in a 2 hour period, we estimate that we each shared hugs with 60 people! Biker dudes, grey haired elders, little kids, hand holding couples strolling the streets. A kool-aid pink, spiky haired, multiply body-pierced young woman even stopped a phone call she was on behind the counter of a store in which she was working and said, “Hold on a minute, I need to go hug some customers.”, when Ondreah and I waltzed in with our FREE HUGS sign. By the time we headed home on a windy February day, we were warmed from the inside.


Gay and Kathlyn Hendricks, directors of the Hendricks Institute  offer a beautiful primer for how to and how not to…hug.


We need 4 hugs a day for survival. We need 8 hugs a day for maintenance. We need 12 hugs a day for growth”, according to family therapist, Virginia Satir.




B’shert-  This wonderful Yiddish word tickles me every time I hear it or say it, because it poses a question that I have yet to answer and perhaps never will. It translates to: “a person’s soulmate, considered as predestined or ideal, any good or fortuitous match.” I extend this concept beyond the romantic relationship realm. I often wonder how much of our life events occur at random or if indeed they are preplanned by a Divine script writer. An ancillary question: are we co-authors of the story or at the whim of a Source outside of us?

While on the phone with my 86 year old mother recently, we were speaking as we have many times, about the way she and my father met in 1955. Mom had been involved with another man for 7 years and although the subject of marriage had arisen, he had yet to ‘pop the question’. He then stood her up on New Years Eve which had her writing him off as reliable husband material. Later that year, she was invited to a party given by a friend who had just returned from her honeymoon and had gathered together those who had not been at her wedding reception. ‘Mr. Unreliable’ was there as well. He beckoned my mother over to talk to him. Her self assured response? “If you want to speak to me, you come to me.” Way to go, Mom!


Another man was witnessing this interaction and thought “This woman has chutzpah!” (another Yiddishism that translates as ‘guts’) He walked over to her, introduced himself and by the end of the night, he drove her home. When my Mom arrived, she informed my grandmother “Tonight I met the man I am going to marry.” Their first date was at a Chinese restaurant and when she cracked open the fortune cookie, it read: “You’d better prepare your hope chest.” Now, it gets even better than that. As they compared notes, they found that not only did they have this one friend in common, but both of them worked out regularly at their local Y and had never crossed paths. The relationship proceeded and the next year they were married…and the rest is history. Had she married this other man, I would not have been the ‘me’ that is writing this entry. But then, that’s a whole ‘nother life observation piece.

I asked my Mom how two people from different sides of the track, my Dad from working class Russian immigrant, Orthodox Jewish stock and my Mom from culturally, but not strictly observant middle class, American born Jewish background were able to create and grow a nearly 52 year marriage. She responded as she always does: “We just loved each other.” We mused about something even more mysterious. I asked her how both she and my Dad knew this woman who had invited them to the same party. My Dad had grown up with her in South Philadelphia and my Mom didn’t recall how she herself had met her. I asked her what if they had met her, so that many years later, they could both be invited to this party, meet and marry?

So often in my own life, I ask that question. Yesterday, I got together with two dear friends (separately) and explored this concept. They are accustomed to my “Edie questions”, that are rarely on the surface. They each came into my life at a time when I was deep in self inquiry and re-invention. Each of them were door openers to other people and ideas that have enriched my life and brought me to the next level of evolution and they acknowledged that I did the same for them. I call it the Hansel and Gretel breadcrumb trail that I follow with curiosity and delight, wondering where it will lead me. What if it truly is be’shert that we were to meet and enrich each others’ lives? Hard to imagine my life without either of these amazing men and even though I don’t see them that often, we are inextricably linked by a Force that I don’t completely comprehend.

As you gaze in the reflection of your own life, are there people and events that seem to wear the label of be’shert?


Personal Space


Recently I was gathering books to bring to work to share with my clients.  Inspirational authors such as Alan Cohen, Shel Silverstein,  Gregg Braden, Judith Orloff, Michael Beckwith, Dr. Seuss, Neale Donald Walsch, Marianne Williamson, Joan Borysenko, Karen Drucker, Jim Donovon as well as ecstatic poets Rumi, Hafiz and Gibran are my literary housemates. I realized that I have more of those treasures than any other item in my home. A friend uses the term ‘verbivore’ to describe himself and I would have to say that I fit into the category as well, since I was raised reading and being read to. Words fill my soul to overflowing and I can’t help but share them. It is hard to imagine my life without them; how infinitely enriched I am with them. So, it occurred to me to consider this question: If someone walked into my house and knew nothing about me, what would they discern about my life? They would see an eclectically decorated home, many windows and a skylight to usher in the sun and stars, with copious amounts of books, music filtering through the air, incense wafting at times. Green beings (a.k.a plants) drink in the light and thrive. It has a welcoming feel to it. While I do have a wee bit of clutter, there is a spaciousness about it. My take is that the way we keep our environment is a reflection of how we live. When my surroundings are clear, so too are my thoughts. When I have excess ‘stuff’ around, my monkey mind is more likely to have a field day.

So what will people imagine your life is like if you were to welcome them to your space?

Blissful Being-KAren Swain


KAren Swain felt like a natural for the Bliss Blog, since she works with energies that she calls Blissful Beings. Her name is pronounced ‘car-in’ and is spelled the way you see it, since her mother wanted to be sure that it was understood. She refers to herself as “a teacher of the teachers, as everyone who is attracted to my work is passionate about contributing to others in a powerful way.”

She shares: “I’m all about the JOY of Deliberate Creation. I do not call my teaching channeling, as I believe we are all doing this all the time, although some more than others. Teaching feels so very natural and easy to me, no need to create a different personality to speak higher guidance. I am a qualified Naturopath, Inspirational speaker and metaphysical practitioner living in Sydney with my daughter Anika, Malcolm and our cat Puss or startree, named by my daughter when she was 4! I am passionate about sharing what I have come to know in, what I call, the Reminders from Home gatherings. Having studied many healing arts including Medical Intuition, Soul Journey meditation, Naturopathy, Theta or Orion Healing, Reiki, Yoga, Pranic Healing, oh you name it, I did them all in my quest to find answers to life, I found the best course of all is LIFE!”

KAren came upon The Blissful Beings in a simple way, as she relates: “I have always had a two way conversation going on in my head, as does everyone, but I have been intensely curious about how life works ever since I can remember. The questions I was asking were along the lines of: “why are we here? where did I come from? what is my purpose? what is the meaning to life? what happen when we die?  and even though I was given the answers many times from within, I was not listening to myself, to the thoughts in my own head, I was searching for the answers out side myself.”

She eagerly absorbed spiritual books and then came upon “Conversation with God.” by Neale Donald Walsch. When I stated reading the CWG books I found that as Neale was asking the questions to God I was receiving the answers before I had time to read them on the page. Often I would put down the book and just listen to the conversation going on in my head, and I would ask more questions, to which I would receive profound and life changing answers. It was fantastic and felt so very natural to me to have this conversation within, and I realised while I was so busy going around looking for answers, I always had this connection to an infinitely wise broader self, who had been trying to communicate to me for years. Well, all my life, only I didn’t TRUST my own thoughts or that I had exalted wisdom flowing through me. I thought I had to find an enlighten one to show me the way.”

She incorporates the Law of Attraction in her personal and professional life: “ASK, then get out of the way, and It is given and says “The Blissful Being share ideas that interest me, and the thing I have been most interested in since I hit the planet is “How do I get what I want ?” or “HOW DO I CREATE MY OW REALITY?” The answers to this come in extraordinarily varied ways. There is only one answer really, with a million different ways in which to say it.”

This brilliant woman finds that people from all spiritual perspectives, from the mainstream to the metaphysical can comprehend her message. “This is something I am passionate about. To make life affirming profound exalted spiritual wisdom available in a language that is understandable and accessible to the masses. I find it all very simple really and I want to present it in simple ways, with easy language, which is what I do and how I teach when speaking in a gathering. I teach from my personality, with my vocabulary.”

She explains the genius creator concept, one of the principles she teaches: “Everything in life is Energy. There is nothing in the universe that is not. Science has shown us that the stuff life is not stuff, it is all energy and information swirling around in a infinite universe. There is a power that is directing this energy, some have called this power “God’s power on Earth.” I call it “thought.”

Every being on the planet, including the animals, is creating their own reality from the the thoughts they are thinking. Thought holds vibration and vibrations are attractive in nature. Like vibration attracts similar vibrations. And so because we are thinking all the time, even when we sleep, we are attracting all the time and creating the life we see around us.

We are the writers, producers and directors of the movie called ” My life” and everyone we encounter is playing a roll in our movie. When we are deliberate with our thinking by choosing thoughts that hold a good feeling vibration, we will attract more good feeling things into our life. We have been given a navigation system to guide us through life and this system is our emotions. E-Motion is energy in motion. Our emotions are constantly communicating to us what Vibrations we are emitting. When we emit a vibration that will attract things we do not want, we feel negative emotion. When we are on track to achieving our dreams, and connected to the energy source, we feel it as positive emotion.”

We are always creating, we are always evolving and expanding. We are all Genius Creators, for we hold the power of manifesting energy into physical form with our focus. We have an awesome power that few are aware of, and even the aware ones seldom take responsibility for it.

Deliberate creation occurs “When we understand that every thought we have creates our reality, it will be important to understand that we are the creator of the thoughts! We are the ones in control of how we think and feel. No one and nothing has the power to think for us, no one can choose our thoughts, this is a power that is given solely to us.

If we are creating, or attracting all the time by the nature of the thoughts we think, then it would stand to reason that it would benefit us profoundly to be deliberate with the thoughts we choose.”

Napoleon Hill called this “a spiritual power.” ,this ability to choose thought…. He said “Regardless of how many times we have failed in the past, whatever the mind can conceive and believe we can achieve.”

He called this ability to be deliberate with our thinking “the greatest power in the universe. Greater than poverty, greater then the lack of education, greater than all our fears and superstitions combined. The power to take possession of our own mind and direct it to what ever ends we may desire. A profound law by which we can chose our vocation in life and achieve it.”

The JOY of Deliberate Creation.

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