SoulCollage® Community Update

September 2016    
A Soulful Synchronicity
by Jennie Oppenheimer

Seena and Jennie,

photo by Diana Arsenian

When the idea of synchronicity enters SoulCollage circles, many of us nod and smile knowingly. For me, it has become so commonplace that I no longer bat an eyelash when those strikingly meaningful coincidences show up, but welcome synchronicity warmly like an old friend. It was one such experience that led me to SoulCollage® in the first place.


For many years I had led art and creativity programs with my husband, but five years ago I was designing my own course for Esalen with a new co-leader. As I searched for words to describe our process for the catalogue, the phrase "collage of the soul" circled my thoughts, and I typed "soul collage" into a Google search to see what would come up. I got goosebumps as I entered the portal into Seena's world. Though this was my first introduction to SoulCollage®, it was immediately familiar, as though I suddenly understood a foreign language. Without hesitation I registered for an upcoming Facilitator Training and had a distinct sense that my life was about to take a major turn. Leap and the net will appear.

My personal backstory juxtaposed against this rich and generative time was much more somber. A 30-year marriage to my husband, also my best friend, was unraveling and tremendous sadness and uncertainty weighed on me.

Fast forward to Santa Cruz and my first-ever introduction through an image. After a brief welcome, Seena invited us to select a handful of images, and then to introduce ourselves by choosing one to speak from - learning the I Am One Who..., which allowed us to claim the wisdom offered by the image.

The image that immediately spoke to me was of a boy, joyful and exuberant, with his arms raised toward the sky as he danced in the surf.

I Am One Who is salty and sandy and in love with life! I Am One Whose arms are raised in joy toward the sun, who is unfettered and free!

Did I actually say that? The words that emanated from my soul surprised me. I had been mired in so much sadness, yet as those words of exuberant joy tumbled out, I sensed that I could be a witness to my own experience. My true nature, calm and clear, was untouchable by any circumstance. Suddenly I could bear what felt unbearable, as I profoundly understood that my situation did not define me.

Surrender, by Jennie Oppenheimer

I Am One Whose grief has the weight of stone, whose heart is dark and heavy, suspended by a thread. I Am One balancing on a frayed rope held together by one strand, close to a fiery blaze that is burning everything to the ground. I Am One Who looks to the heavens for guidance, whose arms are raised in surrender.

My Esalen workshop, called Alchemy and the Art of Intuition, was a rich confluence of mixed media painting, SoulCollage®, and group process. It was a workshop I would have taken had I not been leading it, and creating it was a wonderful step toward my own healing. Enter Jean Houston, one of Seena's early mentors, who happened to be teaching at Esalen beginning the day my workshop ended. Synchronicity again! I extended my stay. It was an enlivening three days with more insights than I can describe here. But there were two take-aways that changed how I view my life and that continue to inform my work.


The first was the concept of the sacred wound, referring to our stories of past pain or trauma that are capable of being transformed so that we can grow into healthier, more whole versions of ourselves. Jean said, "The sacred wound is a big beautiful arrow pointing us in the direction of our purpose."

At that moment the random stars in my life made a constellation. My trajectory, beginning with childhood wounds, then becoming an artist and educator whose passion was to witness and validate others in their own journeys, suddenly made sense. I realized that the tender places within us are themselves our strength and our gift.

Asleep in the Box,

by Jennie Oppenheimer

I Am One Who cannot ignore my calling to step outside the box. I Am One Who is resting. I appreciate a structure that has kept me upright and given me a place to dream, but when I awake it will no longer serve me. I will dance into a world of my own making, filled with brilliant color, a little mischief, aliveness and synchronicity!

Jean used the Greek word entelechy to describe the process by which we come to discover our life purpose. Coined by Aristotle, entelechy means the unfolding of something to its highest potential. Like an acorn to an oak tree, all the information is there like a blueprint, waiting for our voice to be empowered and our potential to be realized. Connecting with our entelechy taps into our native intelligence, our soul. And SoulCollage® is the perfect tool for this work.

It is not only our positive experiences that matter. It is by standing in discomfort, living fully into our grief and challenges, and enduring the dark night that transformation comes and our path is illuminated. Every experience informs our entelechy, and if we are brave enough and willing to listen and act, we will find the way to our greatest unfolding. And with that, as Jung professed, synchronicity will accompany us, delight and validate us.


I recently left a job, a decision that was informed by this SoulCollage® card I made. I am trusting that if I remain open, allies, guides, and challengers will show up everywhere; opportunities will continue to find me. As Wendell Berry says in his beautiful poem, "The Peace of Wild Things," "I feel the day-blind stars waiting for their light/And for a time I rest in the grace of the world/And am free."


Jennie Oppenheimer is an artist, educator and leader of mixed media and (since 2012) SoulCollage® workshops. It is her passionate belief that creativity and play illuminate our strengths and originality and help us discover our unique life purpose and potential. She leads retreats and classes at her SF Bay Area studio, at Esalen Institute, in Spain and Bali, and for many private clients.

From the SCU Archives:

Each Pack contains 12-8" x 5" quality blank mat board cards, 24-pack of Clear Card Sleeves, a Pioneer glue stick, a SoulCollage® logo pen and a SoulCollage® mini-frame.

Keep your SoulCollage® cards with you, make notes about any card, share your cards, and do readings on the go.  

"At first I couldn't imagine using this app, when I have my deck close at hand. This morning I did an actual 4-card reading. Oh my, I loved it! It was as powerful as any of the readings I have done with my actual deck."                      

              ~Ginette D'Silva, Edmonton, Canada

An award winning book, SoulCollage® Evolving gives the basic instructions for how to make and do readings with SoulCollage® cards, and describes how individuals and groups are using this intuitive collage process with various groups.

A SoulCollage® Retreat by the Sea
A SoulCollage® Feast for the Soul  

October 14-16, 2016

Creativity + Community = Sweet Medicine

Will you give yourself a weekend SoulCollage® retreat this Fall on the ocean in Santa Cruz CA? Beauty, camaraderie, healthy food, and playful creative options are a powerful mix. SoulCollage® fosters authentic connections even among strangers, and each card we make builds a bridge of self-knowledge, love, and acceptance among the many facets of whom we truly are. The results are usually a pleasant and nurturing surprise. This retreat is for anyone who wants to learn SoulCollage® or dive deeper into their own ongoing SoulCollage® practice. Enjoy a relaxed schedule which may include walks on the beach, healthy food, and time for reveries. This retreat is sponsored by SoulCollage Inc. and facilitated by SoulCollage® Trainer Mariabruna Sirabella, MFT, who studied and collaborated with SoulCollage® Founder Seena Frost for two decades and who travels the world offering programs as a Facilitator and SoulCollage® Trainer. This weekend's attendance qualifies as the experiential pre-requisite for taking the SoulCollage® Facilitator Training. 16 CA CEUs for MFTs and MSWs. Space is limited. Register early.

Want to take the Facilitator Training?
Purchase and download this recorded video course - Fundamentals of SoulCollage® with Kat Kirby - to start your SoulCollage® deck or to prepare for the Facilitator's Training.


You will receive an overview of SoulCollage®: the Suits, Transpersonal Cards, history of the process, and examples and discussions. A 16-page handout to be used for your own SoulCollage® practice is included as well as two videos and two audio files of the interactive course. The Fundamentals of SoulCollage® course is a pre-requisite for the SoulCollage® Training.


September 24-27, 2016 - Lucy Schaaphok

BELGIUM (Kappelle Op-Den Bos) - In Dutch - CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

8-11, 2016 - Lucy Schaaphok & Mirabai Kolari


October 9-13, 2016 - Andrea Thuler, Art-Therapist FMH
GERMANY Bayern (Allgäuseminarhaus Nähe Isny) - In GermanEMAIL TO REGISTER 
October 13-16, 2016
 -   Catherine Anderson  
SOUTH AFRICA Ixopo (KwaZulu-Natal) Buddhist Retreat Center

October 20-23, 2016 - Linda Woolfson,  M.A., Ph.D.    
PORTUGAL Cascais (Hotel Baia) In English with Portuguese translation - EMAIL TO REGISTER

October 21-23, 2016 -
Mariabruna Sirabella, M.S., LMFT  
CANADA Ontario (Guelph) - In English - EMAIL TO REGISTER

December 8-11, 2016 Mariabruna Sirabella, M.S., LMFT
TAIWAN Details to be announced - In English and Mandarin - EMAIL TO REGISTER 


September 7-11, 2016
- Anne Marie Bennet 
Massachusetts (Westfield) - CLICK HERE TO REGISTER  

September 8-11, 2016 - Mariabruna Sirabella, M.S., LMFT & Sue Gelber  
California (Los Gatos/Santa Cruz area.) CLICK HERE TO REGISTER

October 13-16, 2016 - Diane Karen Born 
Washington (Seattle) - EMAIL TO REGISTER

October 20-23, 2016 - Kat Kirby, M.Ed., ATR-BC  
Arizona (Prescott) 2KatStudios THIS TRAINING IS FULL

November 3-6, 2016 - Kat Kirby, M.Ed., ATR-BC  
Arizona (Prescott) 2KatStudios  REGISTER HERE

November 10-13, 2016- Mirabai Joan Kolari,  
California (Sonoma County) St. Dorothy's Rest


November 18-20, 2016 - Audrey Chowdhury, M.S., ATR-BC 
Wisconsin (Madison) - CLICK HERE TO REGISTER 

February 2-5, 2017 - Diane Karen Born 
Texas (San Antonio) Four Points - EMAIL TO REGISTER 

February 9-12, 2017 - Catherine Anderson 
North Carolina (Charlotte) Catherine Anderson Studio - CLICK HERE FOR INFO 

*No degrees or certificates are required to attend the SoulCollage® Training. The purpose of the Training is to prepare people to share SoulCollage® with others.  The pre-requisites for  the SoulCollage® Facilitator Training are your own active practice of SoulCollage® and your enthusiasm for sharing it with others, as well as reading SoulCollage® Evolving by Seena B. Frost and listening to her CDs: Introduction to SoulCollage® and Facilitating SoulCollage® in Groups.

Before attending a Training, we want you also to have a SoulCollage® basic workshop experience with a trained SoulCollage® Facilitator or listen to a recorded class Fundamentals of SoulCollage®, make some cards, do the exercise, "I Am One Who...", with your cards and do some SoulCollage® Readings, letting your cards answer at least one of your questions.

SoulCollage, Inc. | PO Box 8051 | Santa Cruz | CA | 95061