Inspiration for Personal & Planetary Transformation

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** DECEMBER 21   **
11 :30 AM
Keeping the Soul Fires Burning for Peace 
A free family friendly event 
Grand Army Plaza,
Exotic Brooklyn
At the Fountain

** DECEMBER 21 **
11 :30 AM
THE SUN IS BORN! A Multicultural Celebration of the Winter Solstice
Edgar Cayce A.R.E Center, NYC

** DECEMBER 7 & 28** 
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Giving Thanks 


When we grow and the situations of our lives start to flow, when the going is good and the living gets easier, it seems only natural to be thankful. But what about all those times when nothing seems to budge? When we are stuck in the rush hour traffic jam of daily life and our bodies and souls start to feel like banged up bumper cars? When we are tested and pounded and pummeled. When things seem so crazy we wonder what do we have to be thankful for?


The greatest gift of the mind is, perhaps, perspective. Our reflective, rational side keeps us in balance, helps us from running away with our emotions. "Well," my best friend Daile once calmly commented in the midst of an intense work disaster that would normally have driven her quite mad, "at least nobody died." That's it, exactly. If we have a healthy sense of perspective, our lives become infinitely more precious to us and we automatically operate with an attitude of gratitude.


People who have themselves been ill, or who care-take others, have earned a certain understanding of this point of view. Aging helps, too. Even so, for most of us it is a daily, hourly, minutely learned lesson - one that we easily forget. One that we would be wise to remember.


Lest you forget to be thankful at every turn for every gift, grand and small, here is a suggestion for A Moving Meditation of Appreciation.

Take a walk someplace nice. Alone.


With each step you take, name one good thing that you have in your life. Something for which you are thankful. Recite this ;lst aloud or silently.


Step. My health.      

Step. My friends

Step. My job.

Step. My dog.

Step. A new friend.

Step. A secure home.

Step. The clouds.        

Step. The beautiful moon.                  

Step. That certain memory.

Step. Not knowing war.

Step. Two feet.


This is a great cure for depression, self-pity and envy. Use it daily.  


We all have an amazing abundance of abundance in our lives. Let us give thanks.


What better time to connect with our gratitude than Thanksgiving? So many people sit at the table and dig into the feast without the tiniest awareness of appreciation. Others mutter a throw away "Grace." Why not use the holiday as it was intended - to express gratitude for our lives? How about going around the table before eating and inviting those gathered to share what they are thankful for?


Take a beautiful ear of dried corn and pass it around. As each person names a reason for giving thanks, she or he pulls off a kernel of the corn and places it into a dish. As the dish fills up with colorful kernels, it becomes a visible reminder of the bounty our lives, a graphic symbol of gratitude. This makes a perfect centerpiece for the occasion.


Or, as each guest talks about the harvest of her life, s/he lights a candle. With each candle, the light of love and appreciation grows, creating a glowing atmosphere of sincere cheer.


Thanksgiving is great time to reconnect with our roots, the stories of our own ancestors (who were probably neither pilgrims nor Turtle Islanders). It is important to celebrate the sacrifices made by those who came before us and enabled our lives. This Thursday, take some time to thank your forebearers - those who have helped to shape and form you with their inspiration: your family, your teachers, your mentors, your s/heroes. Those who made the world a better place.


Thank you Gramma, for always loving me best, no matter what, and for slipping me the occasional $5.bill.


Thank you Grandpa who I never met for being a revolutionary and setting the example for struggling for the greater good.


Thank you elementary school principal Wilma Bayes for championing the understanding, respect and celebration of cultural diversity, thus inspiring my life-long passion.


Thank you grad school instructor Sherman Drexler for seeing the real me and giving me permission to express my truest self and to be proud of my quirky individuality.


And thank YOU, my dear circle of celebrants, where ever you are, for sharing my reverence and awe for All That Is.  



And on and on.The list is endless, gratitude boundless.


Thank Goodness!


With gratitude and bountiful blessings,         

 xxMD signature

Talk Turkey 

Here is a great insight from the Interfaith Center of New York:

We encourage people to keep the wishbone from their Thanksgiving Turkey in one piece. Make your wishes without breaking the bone. 


The game of breaking bones yields only winner and loser. Keeping  the wishbone whole is a prayer for peace.


A wishbone serves to protect a bird's heart and provides balance in flight - something we all need.  


 Welcome Morning  

 Welcome Morning


By Anne Sexton


There is joy

in all:

in the hair I brush each morning,

in the Cannon towel, newly washed,

that I rub my body with each morning,

in the chapel of eggs I cook

each morning,

in the outcry from the kettle

that heats my coffee

each morning,

in the spoon and the chair

that cry "hello there Anne"

each morning,

in the godhead of the table

that I set my silver plate, cup upon

each morning.


All this is God

right here in my pea-green house

each morning

and I mean,

though often forget,

to give thanks,

to faint down by the kitchen table

in the prayer of rejoicing

as the holy birds at the kitchen window

peck into their marriage of seeds.


So while I think of it,

let me paint a thank-you on my palm

for this God, this laughter of the morning,

lest it go unspoken.


The joy that isn't shared, I've heard,

dies young.


Estate of Anne Sexton

Ritual Round Up 

October and November has been an intense time  of recovery. My wrist and hand are beginning to respond - albeit sloooowly and with much pain - to all the physical and occupational therapy, acupuncture and massage I have been receiving. (Thank you Sarah, Boris, Sally and Amy.)

This period's concentration on healing my body has been  punctuated by four incredible Blessing Rituals that fed my soul and gave me the energy that I needed to heal - myself and others.

Blessings Galore!

Greenwich Village Halloween Parade

Once again for the fifth year, my remarkable Blessing Band and I led the huge Halloween Parade  with blessings of goodwill and peace.

Thank you to Jeanne Flemming, the parade director, for charging me with the awesome response-ability to set the spiritual tone for the tens of thousands of paraders and the two million bystanders. And a huge thank you to the spirited Blessing Band.

That is the part I love the best. Blessing the crowds. Making eye contact. Connecting energy. Sharing an open-hearted lightness of being with so many souls. I often get carried away and would be there for days blessing each one, one by one, if I had my druthers. Luckily, my Blessing Band keeps my enthusiasm in check and herds me along.

Photo: Meryl Meisler
House Clearing and Blessing

I spent several hours one evening clearing and raising the oppressive energy plaguing an extremely large and extraordinarily beautiful apartment.

Four wonderful members of the household participated as we processed from room to room dispensing smudge, healing waters, bells, blessing oils, invocations and cheer.

By the time we were finished, the apartment felt every bit as as luscious as it looked.

The bonus was the astonishing calming effect it had on one of the dogs, who apparently had been extremely hgh-strung and "problematic!"

40th Birthday Love Fest

Dear Mama Donna,
I just wanted to thank you for the beautiful ceremony you created for my sister's 40th. It literally created a wave of love. People have been communicating back and forth, expressing their love, admiration, and gratitude. I can't get people's loving blessings out of my mind. I keep replaying it. You have inspired a whole group of people. There's no telling how far this wave will travel. May it make it's way back to you many times over. Much love and gratitude,
xo Lisa R.

Personal Cleansing Ceremony

One of my counseling clients reached a milestone in her spiritual growth and wanted to sanctify it by ritually releasing everything that no longer serves her purpose, passion or personal power. So we engaged in a three part ritual - a deep cleansing - body, mind, heart and soul. What a relief it was for her to finally drop her oppressive load.

Thank you to all the lovely people who trusted me to create a transformational ceremony to celebrate a momentous personal  passage. It is an incredible privilege to share such such holy

Please and Thank You

The 2013 Winter Solstice begins my 39th annual cycle of celebrating Celestially Auspicious Occasions. (1975-2012)


During this time, it has been my path and my privilege to produce hundreds of free, public, participatory ceremonies in more than 100 cities. These rituals celebrate the cycles of the cosmos and the seasons of life on planet Earth. They promote connection on three levels: among people, with the universe and with our own deepest, best selves. Connection, communion, compassion.


So far there have been:


76 solstices

76 equinoxes

152 cross-quarter days   

100+ full moons

100+ new moons

7 lunar eclipses

1 partial solar eclipse

1 total solar eclipse

90 chants for peace

12 tree plantings

5 blessings of the Halloween Parade

4 blessings of the Hudson River

A blessing of the Angel at Bethesda Fountain

A blessing of the Angel at Columbus Circle

A blessing of the Angel on the arch at Grand Amy Plaza

A blessing of the Viet Nam Memorial

A blessing of the Stock Exchange on Wall Street

A blessing of the IRS Headquarters

A blessing of Ground Zero

A blessing of the Fleet

A blessing of the NYC Olympic Ticker Tape Parade

A blessing of the presidential inauguration

A blessing of the United Nations

A satellite peace blessing orbiting in space

And counting!


The New Yorker magazine once dubbed me the "Unofficial commissioner of public spirit of New York City." They nailed it! That, precisely, is the perfect definition of my role as an Urban Shaman - my lifetime assignment from the Universe - to opportunities for connection, communion, communication, cooperation, commiseration, commitment and celebration.


But I cannot manage to sustain all of this alone. To be able to provide for such and extensive offering of spirited reverent celebrations, it really does take a village. Your kind donations will allow me to continue to provide free, public, participatory rituals and blessings for millions of folks in cities across the country and around the world.


I thank you most gratefully for your support of my mission and message.






November 3, 7:50 AM:                                       New Beaver Moon
November 17, 10:16 AM:                                   Full Beaver Moon

*Unless otherwise noted, all times are in the Eastern Time
Zone and refer to the Northern Hemisphere.  

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