Journey to Peace and Overcoming Mediocrity

I am so proud of my friend, Valerie Mrak! She is a contributor to a book called “Victorious Women – Overcoming Mediocrity”. She has also done a talk on Tedx called “Peace Inside/Out”. I saw her today at a reunion for an organization we both volunteered for called Youth Technology Corps. I officially met her weeks before our trip but got to know her better while sitting next to her on a plane ride to Mexico for YTC’s annual trip in partnership with a network of schools in Durango. I knew that she worked with film and taught students film-making.

Valerie had given me permission to share the story about our conversation on the plane. I had asked her what kind of work she did as a filmmaker since I hadn’t really heard her speak about her work in our previous group meetings. She told me in a very nonchalant way that she did a documentary about the Dalai Lama called “Shadow Over Tibet” where she traveled to India to interview His Holiness the Dalai Lama and that the documentary was narrated by Richard Gere. I was baffled at how she had never shared this before, so naturally I stood up in the plane and announced to everyone about her great achievement. She told me how embarrassed she was from that incident, but how it had ultimately changed her life. Now, I am not sharing this because I want you to know how great I am, but for the purpose of expressing the importance of speaking up, being bold, adding value and uplifting other people – because a world leader may arise from you taking action and opening your mouth.

Valerie’s book – you can purchase it here
Me with David Finkel (Founder of Youth Technology Corp.) and Valerie Mrak
Us in Durango, Mexico

What are you thankful for?

This week is Thanksgiving. I’m so glad I came across this article on LinkedIn by Forbes. Normally this week I would be going through the motions of starting the holiday season and looking forward to relaxing a bit, but reading this article has made me look into the inquiry of being grateful. It has been an interuption to my routine. Sometimes we need interruptions like that to actually make a stop and take a moment to acknowledge and reflect. Sometimes it seems like we even go through the motions of being grateful and not let it really sink in.

Here’s a great clip from the article that really got to me:

“In fact, it is precisely under crisis conditions when we have the most to gain by a grateful perspective on life. In the face of demoralization, gratitude has the power to energize. In the face of brokenness, gratitude has the power to heal. In the face of despair, gratitude has the power to bring hope.”

I know that you may have read something like this before, but gratitude really does create the space for abundance. It’s for real. Yes think it’s the sense of feeling humbled and being in wonder of life.

Read the full article on the Forbes website here

Reiki Master Teacher

I became a Reiki Master Teacher this past weekend. It was a life changing experience. I have been practicing for ten years and getting attuned to the Master Teacher Level is the culmination of all the practice and study that I’ve done. It has been quite the journey and it’s ongoing. My intention for being a Mater Teacher is to share the Light of Reiki with others who want it and to raise the vibration of the world. This is a gift and I certainly do not take it lightly. It is a responsibility to bring light to the world. Thanks for all your guidance over the years, Robin Shapiro!

Amma ❤️

I got to be with Amma for the first time this past weekend at her ashram in Elburn, Illinois. They call her “the Hugging Saint” because when you are in her presence and she has you in her embrace, it’s like being enveloped in pure love. I was really moved by the her life’s work. Her organization, Embrace the World has donated millions to help disaster victims around the world and to provide housing and food for the poor. So many world leaders have been around Amma and her embrace. I was amazed by how organized her event was and the duration of her hugging sessions. She would sit all day and just hug people. I really felt my heart open when I got to embrace her and I feel like she will always be with my after that. This is how impactful it can be to be around her space. I highly recommend it. I really felt like I was home in her environment. I will never forget the experience.

Repost – You. Me. Some. One. Now.

Right now there are Tibetan Buddhist monks in a temple in the Himalayas endlessly reciting mantras for the cessation of your suffering and for the flourishing of your happiness.

Someone you haven’t met yet is already dreaming of adoring you.

Someone is writing a book that you will read in the next two years that will change how you look at life.

Nuns in the Alps are in endless vigil, praying for the Holy Spirit to alight the hearts of all of God’s children.

A farmer is looking at his organic crops and whispering, “nourish them.”

Someone wants to kiss you, to hold you, to make tea for you.

Someone is willing to lend you money, wants to know what your favorite food is, and treat you to a movie.

Someone in your orbit has something immensely valuable to give you — for free.

Something is being invented this year that will change how your generation lives, communicates, heals and passes on.

The next great song is being rehearsed.

Thousands of people are in yoga classes right now intentionally sending light out from their heart chakras and wrapping it around the earth.

Millions of children are assuming that everything is amazing and will always be that way.

Someone is in profound pain, and a few months from now, they’ll be thriving like never before. From where they are, they just can’t see it .

Someone who is craving to be partnered, to be acknowledged, to arrive, will get precisely what they want — and even more. And because that gift will be so fantastical in it’s reach and sweetness, it will quite magically alter their memory of angsty longing and render it all “So worth the wait.”

Someone has recently cracked open their joyous, genuine nature because they did the hard work of hauling years of oppression off of their psyche — this luminous juju is floating in the ether, and is accessible to you.

Someone just this second wished for world peace, in earnest.

Some civil servant is making sure that you get your mail, and your garbage is picked up, that the trains are running on time, and that you are generally safe.

Someone is dedicating their days to protecting your civil liberties and clean drinking water.

Someone is regaining their sanity.

Someone is coming back from the dead.

Someone is genuinely forgiving the seemingly unforgivable.

Someone is curing the incurable.

You. Me. Some. One. Now.

~ Danielle LaPorte via Mary Standing Otter