The War of Art

Abundant Love Flows From Within

Abundant Love Flows From Within

The years 2012/2013 can be described as magnified milestones in my life that have allowed me to gain higher ground and higher consciousness. This is one chapter, of an even longer journey, that signifies my capability to be accountable. It is only I who can make the necessary changes in my life in order for my happiness, love, and compassion to flow freely, and abundantly!

My New Year’s Resolution for 2013 was to live and love more, and let go of fear. After some serious brainstorming and list creating, I reflected on all that I’ve accomplished this year. I left a serious relationship; I graduated after 5 ½ years of University, packed my dog and I then up and moved to Canada! I am learning major life lessons of unconditional love and compassion; I reserved a spot for this spiritual quest, regained independence and discipline towards my self-practices, and have committed to the consistency of a happy and healthy livelihood. I’ve seen my light and love make this world a better place, and I don’t want to live it any other way.

The War of Art represents my worst enemy, that whom is thyself. If I am to be accountable, then no longer will I stand in my own way. In the past year, I have lost 50 lbs by changing my eating habits, eating organic and homemade meals, and regular exercise. I know me. I know me around the holidays. I know that I cannot resist all the amazing sweets and overindulging. In fact, I’ve already fallen off track, and there’s nothing more disappointing when you disappoint yourself. I have committed to Michelle Greenman’s Loose Weight, Gain Health challenge, will blog each week with my new assignment, and push past my plateau this winter!

This week’s goal was to drink at least 10 glasses of water a day! I feel good becoming more focused, and taking control over the aspects of my life I want to improve. I am back and ready. I also recognize that the changes I want to make are life-long goals and not going to change over night! I am looking forward to honing this new chapter, and sharing it with all of you!

So in honor of the new changes, and letting go of the past and any fear I’ve been conditioned to… Here is the final song off my newest demo, Accelerated Healing!  Enjoy 🙂

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I AM Divine

Full Blue MoonTonight is the Full Blue Moon, and my mind has been all over the place. Distracted with questions I already know positive answers to, clouded by emotions from my haunting past, and jabs of insecurities that no longer serve me. Coming into 2013 has been the hardest transition of my life, I know I’m not alone, and the work has just begun.

This weeks goal: Stay focused and disciplined towards my self-care and self-love practices. 

Because I am a unique being of sorts, I have adjusted my spiritual practices to serve my multidisciplinary interests and needs. Therefore, ranging from daily to monthly, my spiritual practices include the following: prayer, singing, writing, cooking, gardening, quality time with my Bella, dancing, meditating, running, yoga, swimming, hiking, canoeing/kayaking, etc. When I feed my creative spirit intently with these activities, I am in my highest and happiest state of being.

It is in these moments of my life where I can naturally take a deep breathe in….arms to the sky…. exhale….ahhhhh pure gratitude. I have also taken it upon myself to look at my list of strengths and weaknesses daily.  Then, I pick one weakness to “practice”; such as, patience, trust, compassion, unconditional love, and listening.  We all know the saying, “practice makes perfect”. I think, if we  truly care about being our highest selves then it will take practice too! If you find this to be a constant, and self-structured guide- please by all means use this method for yourself!

This brings me to Oprah and Deepak’s 21-Day Meditation Challenge! I have been following, and I am so thankful to have a guide through these new transformations and in the re-creating of MY relationship with MYSELF and others. Since coming to Canada, I have been going through intense healing and in a short few months, I have come so far. Although the work is never really done, I am proud of the strength I’ve gained by leaving the comfort of my friends and family in the Midwest to explore my own interests, skills, and talents. Sometimes the hardest things are exactly what we need, when we need it most importantly.

Here are a few outlets I follow regularly that you may also find helpful:

Tom Lescher Astrology Forecasts/Pele Reports

Mystic Mamma

Brave Archer Films Documentary- 2012 Crossing Over: A New Beginning

With profound appreciation, joy, and gratitude for the people around me and experiences I’ve faced, I would like to now include an Honorable Mention. The people listed below are relationships I have developed over the years that have truly shaped who I am. I want to honor you for truly being inspirational, and showing me unconditional love that transcends time and place. Because of the Divinity within you, I AM Divine.  Thank you!!!!

Honorable Mentions (In no particular order):

Lavonna Davis

Selika Ducksworth-Lawton

Diane Roberts

Maegan Boss

Sassan Zaker

Emily Baugus

Reed Grimm

Alexia Larson

Shannon Pitzele

Jennelle Donnay

Jesse Dixon

Allie Farnhammer

Craig Rice

Adrian Larkin

Kristina Kelly

Sophie LeCorre

Beth Inman

Rachel Francois

Kaila Sanders

Emma Richerson

Helen Widdicombe

Pia Bayetti

Bri Smith

Britt Smith

Brittany Schoenick

Jeff Bailey

Michael Olson

Emily Peterson

Casie Lamorie

Tyler Baumgart

Brooke Colby

David Olson

Chad Walters

Susannah Tedesco

Sara Pisa

Mikayla Shroeder

Dirk Gibbs

Nick Schultz

Abby GiggleGypsy

Harry Philburt

Janani Logendran

Carly Clemurphy

Mark Levandoski

Mary Levandoski

Tania Halbersma

Zach Liebenstein

Blake Auler-Murphy

Melissa Hartung

Holly Stro

Heather Boritzke

The list could go on forever! Not trying to leave anyone out, but really just wanted to shine some light and love on you all! Happy Full Blue Moon Friends, may your transformations be challenging so we can grow into our highest selves together!

Live.Laugh.Love

❤ Namaste

Let Go of Fear. Live and Love More.

I AM relieved to have so much free time now that I’ve graduated! It’s an incredible feeling; knowing my great accomplishments, and how far I’ve come. I mean, I packed my dog and I in one suitcase, 4 bags, and a kennel. Somehow, I’ve ended up in what the people call, “The Palm of the Creator”.  Haha, what a trip!

Lillooet is a small, St’at’imc native community in Northeast British Columbia. After I graduated from McNally Smith College of Music this April, I was offered an Arts Contracting position for the Ucwalmicw non-profit. My good friend, Susannah Tedesco, is the coordinator for the Ucwalmicw Voice and Vision in Unity – 6 month Hip-Hop program.  It was like she picked me fresh out of the liberal, and artistic crop the Midwest has to offer. I knew in my heart this was an opportunity of a lifetime, and I seized it.

I’ve been here 10 days now, and I can FINALLY feel the ability to slow my mind down from the city life! I’ve been waiting for this place of quiet serenity, and I AM now so thankful. I have TIME! I don’t think you understand. I have time to do all the things I love; like gardening, reading, writing, singing, outdoor activities, did I mention tending to homegrown green? Lol

I already swam in the clearest glacier lake I’ve ever seen, and I haven’t even been horseback riding or hiking yet, (the bears are pretty hungry right now…One bear even stole someone’s Llama!) See and there I go again.

Then… I have to remind myself to slow down again

It’s not easy, but it’s one of the many things I’m learning to practice. The months ahead are going to be the grandest moments of my life!

This year’s resolution was simply: “Let go of fear. Live and love more.”

I truly believe since coming into 2013, something has changed in the collective conscious. We are becoming awakened. We are all going through major life transitions of challenge, growth, and love. I AM not alone.

I AM reading When Things Fall Apart, by Pema Chodron, for the second time through now. The part of what I read today, I thought was especially beautiful, is as follows:

      “The essence of life is that it’s challenging. Sometimes it is sweet, and sometimes it is bitter. Sometimes your body tenses, and sometimes it relaxes or opens. Sometimes you have a headache, and sometimes you feel 100 percent healthy. From an awakened perspective, trying to tie up all the loose ends and finally get it together is death, because it involves rejecting a lot of your basic experience. There is something aggressive about that approach to life, trying to flatten out all the rough spots and imperfections into a nice smooth ride.

     To be fully alive, fully human, and completely awake is to be continually thrown out of the nest.  To live fully is to be always in no-man’s-land, to experience each moment as completely new and fresh. To live is to be willing to die over and over again. From the awakened point of view, that’s life.  Death is wanting to hold on to what you have and to have every experience confirm you and congratulate you and make you feel completely together.  So even though we say the yama mara is fear of death, its actually fear of life.

     We want to be perfect, but we just keep seeing our imperfections, and there is no room to get away from that, no exit, nowhere to run.  That is when this sword turns into a flower.  We stick with what we see, we feel what we feel, and from that we begin to connect with our own wisdom mind.

 Without the maras, would the Buddha have awakened? Would he have attained enlightenment without them? Weren’t they his best friends, since they showed him who he was and what was true? All the maras point the way to being completely awake and alive by letting go, by letting ourselves die moment after moment, at the end of each out-breath. When we wake up, we can live fully without seeking pleasure and avoiding pain, without re-creating ourselves when we fall apart. We can let ourselves feel our emotions as hot or cold, vibrating or smooth, instead of using our emotions to keep ourselves ignorant and dumb. We can give up on being perfect and experience each moment to its fullest. Trying to run away is never the answer to being a fully human being. Running away from the immediacy of our experience is like preferring death to life.

     Looking at the arrows and swords, and how we react to them, we can always return to basic wisdom mind.  Rather than trying to get rid of something or buy into a dualistic sense of being attacked, we take the opportunity to see how we close down when we’re squeezed.  This is how we open our hearts.  It is how we awaken our intelligence and connect with fundamental Buddha nature. “   – Pg 92-94

I think the universe sends us signs along our paths as a form of guidance.  Living in a big city, and an entire life of institutionalized education has made me believe I had to know everything. I also confidently surrender my role as a perfectionist.

I AM consciously aware, and thus choose to participate in developing a strong foundation for a healthy community; all while continuing to challenge, grow, love, and learn.

The Bone Collector

As the days move forward after my first native sweat lodge ceremony this past Sunday, things are becoming more clear.

I came to Lillooet, BC with intent to spend my summer after graduation in the majestic mountains, inspiring youth, and healing as an individual. Coming into 2013, and the winter solstice, my paradigm has been completely altered. I realized I needed to learn to love myself again, before I could be in a healthy relationship with anyone else. In doing so, I went into my first sweat lodge in search of healing from things in my past that I’ve never worked through. I knew I’ve been holding onto my “story”, and my past experiences because they make up the very fabric of who I am. However, I never understood the simple principle – “We only know what we are taught”.

I wanted to start out my day right today, so I pulled a tarot card while drinking my coffee. This is what it read:

The Bone Collector:

“You are whole and have everything you need within.”

“When the Bone Collector appears, she is asking you to look closely at your circumstances to see if you’re fully present or reacting out of past conditioning and unconscious expectations.

Whenever we’re wounded, especially when we’re young, it’s as if something essential is stolen from us. We adapt, and accept a particular version of the truth that then sets us up to behave a certain way in the future when faced with a situation that reminds us of the original event.  What we know about ourselves thus becomes influenced by a perception of limitation.

You may feel unworthy or without courage; you may see yourself as flawed or unlovable, or expect to be criticized. No matter what your question, the Bone Collector reminds you that the truth is that you are a powerful being with limitless possibilities. She has kept safe what was stolen from you in the wounding and is here for you as you reclaim it now. You have everything you believe you lack, and the Bone Collector is your inner resource. Act as if you have what you need and you’ll find you have it after all. Anything is possible. With awareness, the wounds of the past need not define you.”

 

I’m still baffled by how dead on this is for me! Maybe some of you are feeling the same, and if so, I hope this helps you find clarity.Image

The New Rules to “Higher Education”

I’ve come to the point where I can’t sleep because my mind is racing with innovative ideas. For me, the best method of expression, is writing everything down and making structure of whats going on in my brain. No, I’m probably not your average full-time student, working two-jobs, all in between an internship and some kind of social life. But with a lot of practice at this college thing, Im able to process what I want for my future, imagine what it will take to get there, and create my own destiny.

You see, four years at the University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire, studying Broadcast Journalism with a minor of Environment, Society, and Culture, was more than a defiant experience in my history. Not because my  Advisor told me, “If you think you will ever make a change in the television industry, you’re in for a rude awakening”. But it was like magic when I realized that I had the passion, educational tools, talent, and natural intelligence to go against assumptions made of my capability.  I decided I would make the change I wanted to see in the world, and I would do it on my own terms.

So I stopped trying to convince myself I needed some type of corporate career to be successful, and I used my life, with positive mentors and friends around me, as a new higher education. I pursued my hobby of writing music again, and I emerged myself in the local music scene. Almost instantaneously, I moved to the Twin Cities, transferred to McNally Smith College of Music, and started working with the non-profit, Environment Minnesota.

As If my heart always knew I would eventually, “come home”, I was welcomed with open arms by other amazing, talented, and aspired people, who enjoy the same pleasures the cities in the Midwest have to offer- Art, Culture, History, Food, and Music. I am learning from great people in the industry, and I can see clearly ahead to where this path will take me!

I’m currently  in the process of  combining my world experience with my education. I have tapped into the resource in my mind that holds imagination, creativity, love, and humanitarianism. All the work I’m putting into releasing a demo, establishing a band, and starting a non-profit, is for the greater good and comes from the most genuine place. My question is, “What happened to the Talented Tenth”?

As I move forward, I would like to focus my purpose with a deeper responsibility. I have been strongly influenced by a recent TED Talk I watched titled, “Ken Robinson Says School Kills Creativity”. I encourage people watch it, because he goes under the surface about our education system; for example he discusses the hierarchy of subjects taught  in concurrence with industrialism, the education system is focused on university acceptance, and that intelligence is diverse, dynamic, and distinct.

I think, people will resort to new experiences for education. Since we don’t know what’s going to happen in five years, its undeniable that degrees aren’t the most important criteria for having a successful career. Experience, skills, image, professionalism and networking is what employers are looking for, and gives a fresh perspective on how you should pursue a career.

Robinson says, “I believe the only hope for the future is to adopt a new conception of human ecology. One in which we start to reconstitute our conception of the richness of human capacity. Our education system has mind our minds in the way we have strip mined the earth for particular commodity.  And for the future, it won’t service.  We have to rethink the fundamental principles on which we’re educating our children.”

Ken Robinson says school kills creativity

Mikel Wright and the Wrongs – CD Release!

Released July 20th 2012

Last night, July 20th 2012, marked one of the best CD Release parties of the summer! A night filled with familiar faces, and friendly greetings, it was no doubt a great success. Mikel Wright and the Wrongs released their album “We Get Down”, and there was a big dance party, as expected!

One of the best things about the MidWest Music Scene is the deep-rooted, collaborative community that is found here. Mikel Wright demonstrated this type of community perfectly with his opening bands!   For example, Dj Nimo Thehooligan, Duenday, Down Lo, and P.B. & The Jam.  He took the event to a different level by having special guests super jam during each set! Special guests included, Big Zach of Kanser and More Than Lights, Mammoth Jackson, Culture Cry Wolf,  Sine Circle, Tom Alane from Circle of Heat, Mark Joseph from Mark Joseph Project and Down Lo, Sean Anonymous, not to mention, Reed Grimm and Ben Peterson from Shoeless Revolution.  This was a great way to mass support local artists, and the perfect place to do it- The Twin Cities.

Beyond the special experience of being surrounded by such wonderful musicians, collaboration is the leading theme for Mikel Wright’s album, “We Get Down”. Mikel Wright & The Wrongs first broke onto the Minneapolis Music scene in 2007.  The currently tour the MidWest and play at multiple music festivals. Together Mikel and the Wrongs are continually creating a sound of their own. Mikel has the vocal depth of an old blues man with the heart of a twenty-two year old musician. His dynamic voice enforced by the talented band creates a unique funk-filled reggae rock sound that is one of a kind. The bands charismatic rhythms and fascinating lyrics are guaranteed to captivate any audience.

Mikel Wright and the Wrongs’ live shows are always a treat! Fun and interactive, Mikel has a whole “Wrongs Family” that he plays with on different nights at different shows! If you would like to know more information about the “Wrongs Family” check out their info! But no matter who plays, its that kind of music that revives your soul in just one night! Their positive message is refreshing after a long week!

Make sure to follow Mikel Wright & The Wrongs on Facebook, and Twitter, and for more information on the album and band members check their BandCamp.

Sine Circle “Aqueous” – Album Review

Releases July 27th!

I’m extremely happy for the opportunity to take a sneak-peak-preview of Sine Circle’s new album, “Aqueous”! Starting from the first song, it took me on a visual journey. “Aqueous”, is primarily instrumental with concepts that make a unique impression in the world of Contemporary Music. Each song was present with depth, irony, and a melted sense of culture. Of course, I’m going to tell you my favorites, but first, who is Sine Circle?!

Sine Circle is a member of Last Triumph. A collective of artists, musicians, dancers, designers, photographers, producers, chefs, skateboarders, graffiti artists, and engineers, Last Triumph is paving a revolutionary road in the heart of Minnesota’s Twin Cities. Sine Circle was founded by a dear friend, talented percussionist, and skilled producer, Sassan Zaker!

Founder of Sine Circle

Sassan is relentlessly attempting to discover an elevated future sound while blending organic musical elements. “Aqueous”, is a great example of the musical sophistication Sine Circle has to offer. “Aqueous” is releasing on July 27th 2012, on iTunes, BandCamp, Amazon, and in stores for only $5.99.  It will also be available to listen to for free on Spotify. You should also follow Sine Circle on Twitter, and Facebook!

As a singer/songwriter of lyrics, my composition process is quite different from that of a musical producer. I would like to give respectful credit for the concepts derived within this album. Creative energy flowed from song to song, and took me to a place that lyricism never has. Visions filled my  mind with each concept, and it was a smooth experience that captured my senses.

My top three favorite songs are Chase the Sunset, The Origin and The Evolution, and Roots and Wires because of the way they mesmerize. I imagined incredible things inspired by their individualism. Music truly is life, and I love those moments when music can make you feel emotions so real.  “Aqueous” spoke to me, in what seemed like another language, but one I needed to try to find the right words to describe. I also loved the instrumentation of the wooden flute throughout the album. It has a scent of husk, with an organically-ambient character; similar to the ambience of candle light. I can see myself listening to this album doing just about anything, and will on repeat! Thank you, Sine Circle, for sharing your heart through music!

If you’re just as excited now for this album, take a sneak peak on their recently released video below!