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Anam Cara’…soul friend.

John O’Donohue wrote a book called “Anam Cara”

“Anam cara” (Ananchara) is a Gaelic word that translates as “soul” friend. Anam cara is a partner of your soul, an equal who discuss problems and share advice with you. The ancient Celts often practiced the ritual of Anam Cara to formalize friendships in the same way that marriage rituals formalize the bond between lovers.

In the Celtic tradition, there is a beautiful understanding of love and friendship. One of the fascinating ideas here is the idea of soul-love; the old Gaelic term for this is anam cara. Anam is the Gaelic word for soul and cara is the word for friend. So anam cara in the Celtic world was the “soul friend.” In the early Celtic church, a person who acted as a teacher, companion, or spiritual guide was called an anam cara. It originally referred to someone to whom you confessed, revealing the hidden intimacies of your life. With the anam cara you could share your inner-most self, your mind and your heart. This friendship was an act of recognition and belonging. When you had an anam cara, your friendship cut across all convention, morality, and category. You were joined in an ancient and eternal way with the “friend of your soul.”  John O’Donohue

John O’Donohue  explained that “Anam Cara’ and the meaning of these kind of relationships that are different than just being an acquaintance but “requires a purposeful presence – it asks that we show up with absolute integrity of intention.

Anam Cara Blessing video
I love this  video by  Doug Von Koss, where he sings a Anam Cara blessings
Send a blessing to your ‘Anam Cara’
Peacefully, Jane
Jane Brown Robertson, BA, CS
Conscious Aging workshop facilitator, graduate of IONS Conscious Aging Workshop Facilitator training
A Peaceful Way workshops and Retreats
Author – In Silence, Discovering Self through Meditation

 

 

Join me for the Spring 2017 Conscious Aging Workshops!  This series of 5 workshops can change your life!  This program has given me a new outlook for aging, taken away my fears of aging and most of all I discovered how unique this last third of my life is.  Last spring I offered this course and it had amazing results for the participants who were willing to reflect on their lives and to open to new ideas and practices that they can use as they age.  Best of all are the conversation circles where we share our experiences and gather the wisdom of others. We all experienced some insights into aging that we had not considered to make our lives more meaningful and vibrant.  The workshops are offered in Meaford, Ontario this spring. They are part of the Municipality of Meaford Lifestyles Programs.  Visit my Conscious Aging site for detailed information about this program and its benefits.  Registration info is on the flyer below.

Looking forward to sharing these workshops with you!    Jane Brown Robertson

conscious-aging-poster-spring-2017

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It is beautiful to be up at sunrise and to mediate along the shores of Georgian Bay on a cold winter morning.  There was a stillness and calm all around me on the morning of this photo. It felt magical as I looked out to the frozen water with the rising sun shining rays of pinks and oranges across the distant clouds. I felt a deep connection to nature and to spirit.

People often ask me what to expect from meditating.  Some say they cannot do it. Learning to meditate does take concentration and a willingness to sit quietly, to learn to breathe to relax your body and to move out of our mind’s busy thoughts and move into our heart’s consciousness of love and compassion.

I meditate to relax  and to calm myself as the world spins around and presents itself in ways that I am not sure what the outcome will be.  The US election and all the happenings this week with Trump as President can be unnerving.   So my meditation time takes me within my consciousness to a place where I can reflect and feel a sense of peace, a sense of connection with my loved ones, with spirit and with all life. I take time to send them love and to feel grateful for their presence in my life. I send love to all the people in the world who need healing and support and pray they receive what they need.  I visualize the world changing into a place of compassion and freedom for all. These thoughts and prayers brings me comfort and peace. They give me a vision of the future I desire and can help to create in my daily life.  I always feel that I have a guiding presence and that I am loved, always.  So meditation eases my fears and anxiety and brings me back into my daily life where I can face the challenges and do my best to create peace in my outer world.

As we are all unique, yet deeply connected, we view life in our own way so every meditation will be unique and for you only.  No one can know what we are thinking.  In the same way, no one can really understand you meditative experiences.  But there seems to be some commonalities that my groups share after meditating. They all feel a sense of relaxation and peace.  They feel a connection to spirit that brings them comfort. This connection to something spiritual leads them to feel connected to all life.  Some have visualizations of peaceful places or people or colours.  Some hear a guiding voice that shares love and peace. Many write after their meditations so they will remember the images or thoughts from the meditations. They begin to meditate daily, if only for a few minutes in the morning or evening.  Some do walking meditations in nature. Others meditate at their yoga or art classes…tapping into the beauty and love around them during their day…so the energy and peace of their meditations is carried outwards…

Here is a prose I wrote after a meditation about ‘I thought I knew who I was’…but my meditations showed me a new way to feel and understand who I am…

“I thought I knew who I was

Until I entered into the space within

There I met a different image of myself

I found a person I that I loved

No masks or veils in this space

The truth revealed in simplicity

Revealing me as a being of light,

As a being of life, as a being of ages

With a human purpose of awakening…”

The prose goes on and is quite long, but you can hopefully see that as I meditate I have a greater sense of my self, my being, who is here to awaken to love, to be more conscious of how I am living.  My life has been full of awakenings and I hope it always will be.  It is the unknown that makes life exciting and keeps us creative and vibrant.  So life is a mystery…yes!  Meditation brings me some clarity by revealing peace, love and unity within each of us. What a gift!  Remember you have all the strength and creative power to live a peaceful life, in spite of what is happening in the world.  We are awakening together to greater love and caring for all life.  It is the only way forward…

Peacefully, Jane

 

 

 

 

I Just Woke Up

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I found this picture on Facebook so I am not sure who created it, but it did stimulate me to reflect on the meaning of the words, “I didn’t change. I just woke up.”  When I awaken to a new thought, vision or perception, it is an exciting moment.  It’s an ‘aha’ moment.  I have discovered something new that can change my life or encourage me to try something new. I think to awaken my consciousness, my feelings and emotions change as I see a broader picture of our life.  Sometimes, I feel a deeper connection to others, my spouse, children, friends.  I may awaken to how to solve a problem.  I may awaken to words for a poem or a blog article that flow easily out onto the paper.  I may awaken to a deeper connection with nature and its beauty.  I may awaken spiritually and feel a greater connection with God or the universe.  I may awaken to my inner being, my soul self and all the wonders that come with that awakening.

Our consciousness is in a constant state of awakening to new ideas.  We can shut new ideas out or we can say ‘aha’ to a new thought…”I just woke up to…”  This constant creative consciousness is what keeps us moving forward, seeking new adventures, being grateful for each day, embracing the unknown mystery we call life.  By allowing ourselves to wake up a little each day, our lives become enriched with new energy.  Life always has hope and newness!  We don’t have to do anything spectacular but some of us may.  We do have to be willing to awaken and unglue old fixed ideas so more vibrant, healthy and creative ideas can flow.

How are you awakening each day?  You do not have to change but awaken your mind, open your heart,  breathe…the change will come naturally as your heart and mind open to greater love and peace.

Peacefully, Jane

 

11709538_10152829565162303_6161609573751527717_nJane Rosalea Brown,BA, CSW, USUI Reiki Master

Author ~ In Silence, Discovering Self through Meditation, Jane Rosalea Booth (author name)

A Peaceful Way Gatherings and Retreats

12115553_10153664369192422_7716424410471290604_n

Conscious Aging Workshops

Jane Rosalea Brown   Follow me on twitter @janerbooth

 

 

Stay in Love

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Here we are at the beginning of a New Year with lots of people promoting programs to change us, to help us create the life we want by encouraging us to live fully and to make affirmations or intentions about how we would like to be and how we can be our authentic Self. I am in this group of people with Conscious Aging that starts in April.

Now all these ‘intentions’ and programs can be good for us. Positive energies bring positive results in our lives.  Affirmations keep us focused on our visions or dreams. Self- reflection and meditation takes us within and helps our to calm and feel connected spiritually.  But sometimes we can feel bombarded by all these suggestions no matter how well-meaning these practices may be.

However, I am going to offer my Jane’s Peaceful Path tip. For today, stop trying to be something different.  Everything in this moment is what is best for you…even though it may not appear that way.  For today, simply stay in love…all day…every moment…with everyone you meet, with nature, with all life but most of all, with you.  For today, observe how your life is unfolding as you stay in love…magical things happen when we stay in love.

Here is a lovely video that I have played at my retreats…just what we need to stay in love! Enjoy

“Love, Peace, Wisdom” by Bliss

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=elzh8cUOImc

Bliss – Love Peace and Wisdom lyrics

“If Love were a bird, I would stroke her bright feathers

Then I’d watch her fly free, cross the still of the dawn

And if Peace were a mountain, we’d gather around her

To bathe in her silence, her power, her call

If Wisdom could sing or whisper his secrets Eternity teaching the ways of the free

In my mind I can see them, I hear them and I feel them

For Love, Peace and Wisdom are all part of me

If Love has her freedom, and Peace her expression,

Surely Wisdom will grow like a flower in bloom

The seed has been planted, and tended and watered

By the prayers of the hopeful and the tears of the brave

We long to return to that place of still waters

And sit on the banks under some shady tree

In my mind I can see it, I hear it and I feel it

And Love, Peace and Wisdom are all that we need

Some call me a dreamer, some will call me a seeker

One who follows her stars on a quest for the truth

But every believer holds a deep hidden memory

Of a time when the earth was a flower in bloom

We long to return to that place of still waters

And sit on the banks under some shady tree

In my mind I can see it, I hear it and I believe it

And Love, Peace and Wisdom are the three golden keys”

Stay in love so peace and wisdom will flow.

Have a beautiful, loving day,

Peacefully, Jane

 

11709538_10152829565162303_6161609573751527717_nJane Rosalea Brown,BA, CSW, USUI Reiki Master

Author ~ In Silence, Discovering Self through Meditation, Jane Rosalea Booth (author name)

A Peaceful Way Gatherings and Retreats

12115553_10153664369192422_7716424410471290604_n

Conscious Aging Workshops

Jane Rosalea Brown   Follow me on twitter @janerbooth

cute-love-bird-picture-for-facebook-share-1-6f7eb

I am going to share a poem I wrote about Depression.  No one really wants to discuss depression, not even people who are dealing with it.  But it is a topic that needs some understanding as it is part of all our lives.  I have gone through periods that I call my ‘dark night of my soul’, where all I wanted to do was pull my blanket over me and sleep.  But those periods did not last long.  My inner spirit always called out to me in my meditations to wake up and face the world.  I have been able to rise up and face the world.  But for those who have greater challenges, deeper hurts, illnesses, this is not easy.  They need deep compassion, love and understanding of the feelings of depression.

So as I was thinking about depression and trying to discover a deeper understanding of it, these words flowed out.

Depression

Dark days that no one understands

Filled with disappearing hours

Empty like a dried up well

All alone, yet surround by those who care

Kind words help for a moment

Then they drift far away

Only the dog’s whine arouses me

My heart stirs feeling loved

 

But what is there to love now?

A cold shell surrounds me

My protective armour

Designer house, Designer clothes, Designer life

False images, emptiness, unworthiness

Today the pills arrived to lift me

From this depressed and lonely state

I long to smile a true smile

To laugh at life’s joker

Who pokes his twisted smile at me

Ah ha! Gotcha!

 

I want courage to step out into the world

Fearlessly, to enjoy life

Like I am in my hazy memories

Fading…fading away

My body trembles, wanting to sleep

So tired…so tired

 

But no rest, just taunting questions

Can I reach inward to find my soul?

Can I open my vulnerable heart to love?

Will I be well and healthy?

I want to answer “Yes”

Yes, tomorrow will be better

Yes, I will be strong

Yes, I am alive and well

But for now my ‘yes’ remains silent

 

Only my warm blanket comforts me

Like an old friend’s embrace

Bringing some needed assurance

Hope that I will awaken

To remember who I truly am

To love myself once more

To embrace a new way to be

To heal my body, mind and soul

Somehow…sometime…

Perhaps today

 Dedicated to those who suffer from depression, Jane Rosalea Brown, Dec.30, 2016

 

So how do we lift ourselves out of depression and into love of our true self?  We can begin by nurturing ourselves in a new way.  To move out of depression and to move into love with our Self, our inner self, spend a few minutes each day meditating.

Begin your meditations by focusing on your breathing…breathing in…breathing out…breathing in…breathing out.  This practice will begin to relax your body…allow your mind to calm, allow all your muscles to relax their tension…breathing in and breathing out…then take your awareness to your heart…and simply have a quiet moment.

Taking your thoughts out of your mind (where depression dwells) and into your heart brings a shift in our consciousness.   Begin gently to think of one thing. It can be a person/place/animal/plant/stars or cosmos or a poem or art work, music…that you like and concentrate on that ‘one thing’…feel it, sense it, love it…even if you have to fake the feeling of love.  Remember your true essence, our heart and soul, is love…this is who you are.  Imagine this ‘one thing’ is loving you and you are returning love to it. “Yes, I love you.” Stay for a few minutes in this feeling of love.  As you practice each day increase this time.  The time will expand naturally as your heart begins to open to receive love and to give love.

To change we must let go of our fears.  In your meditation, release a fear…just say…take this fear of…..whatever your fear is….away…”I release my fear of……”  These meditative practices take effort but slowly you will notice a difference.  I had a huge fear of failing and for years had to work at releasing this fear.  My ‘what ifs’ stopped me from going to university for years.  I was 40 years old before I had the courage to go to University.  I was terrified I would fail…but guess what…I didn’t.  I had 2 wonderful years of studies.

Daily meditations will ease your depression and bring comfort and perhaps some new insights.   Meditation is not in place of medications but will assist you if you are on medications. Talk to your doctor about meditation and seek out a person or group near you that practice meditation.  There are many ways to meditate.  You can combine exercise, yoga, dance, music, drumming, chanting to your meditation time. I walk each morning and connect with nature and people whom I see on my walks. On my walks I feel gratitude for the beautiful forests and water where we live. I smile at the birds, squirrels and trees and plants…”Yes, I love you”…this is my walking meditation.  It leaves me feeling connected to life, to spirit and to my soul.

In Meaford, I am offering Conscious Aging Workshops Series in April, 2017.  Join me for these workshops that are fun and insightful to assist you to live with greater ease and happiness as you age…by living consciously…living with more awareness and inner peace.

I also offer private Reiki sessions for relaxation and Meditation sessions for inner peace by appointment.

Remember light always outshines darkness.  Visualize light, sunshine, as you meditate. You are loved and protected always.

Blessings of well-being, love and inner peace.

Peacefully, Jane

11709538_10152829565162303_6161609573751527717_nJane Rosalea Brown,BA, CSW, USUI Reiki Master

Author ~ In Silence, Discovering Self through Meditation, Jane Rosalea Booth (author name)

A Peaceful Way Gatherings and Retreats

12115553_10153664369192422_7716424410471290604_n

Conscious Aging Workshops

Jane Rosalea Brown   Follow me on twitter @janerbooth

 

hart-dancing-eternity

Visionary Artist Francene Hart http://www.francenehart.com

As I was making preparations for Christmas, baking, shopping, decorating, wrapping gifts, I took a few minutes this morning for quiet reflection and meditation.  As part of my spiritual practice, I write what I have heard in my meditations.  My inner voice continues to speak to me after my meditations and I am always lifted by what I hear.  Our inner voice is the voice of our soul, our essence, our inner wisdom. We all have come into this life as wisdom carriers (listen to a 3 year old, you will know this is true) with much to share with one another if we take time in our relationships to listen…to our self…to others.  Taking time and trusting your inner wisdom brings peace even in our most difficult moments.

I was thinking about ‘gifts’ this morning and what gifts in my life do I truly value and what has heart and meaning in my life.  This is a conscious aging practice that I use to bring me into my core and truth.  I opened my binder where I had recorded these words from a meditation in last Dec. 26, 2015.

“The gift of your presence

Fills me with joy

Lifts my heart to see

What I Am

Light within light

Creation upon creation

Waiting to unfold

A step into timelessness

A dance in the moonlight

A beginning, an ending

Endless revolutions

Stillness of space.” Jane Rosalea Brown

This time of the year brings up lots of emotions for many people as Christmas has transformed into a commercial circus.  Take some time to see who in your life is a ‘gift of your presence’.  Take some time to connect with your inner presence and realize that you are a ‘gift’ to all who know you.  Stay in love with all around you…soak up the beauty of nature…the kindness of neighbours and family…create your own dance even if it is just in your imagination…feel the loving presence, the stillness of our inner space, that is always supporting and guiding us.

Christmas is about the birth of a miracle…a baby who went on to teach about love.  Each of us is a miracle.  May we all pass on that Christmas miracle of love in each moment.  However, you celebrate or pass this holy time of the year, I send you…

Season’s greetings, Happy Solstice and wishing all many miracles, joy and peace,

Merry Christmas, Love and Peace, Jane

About artist: Francene Hart is a wonderful visionary artist who connects deeply with spirit through nature and sacred geometry.  Please visit her website to see her amazing works.  She lives in Hawaii.

11709538_10152829565162303_6161609573751527717_nJane Rosalea Brown,BA, CSW, USUI Reiki Master

Author ~ In Silence, Discovering Self through Meditation, Jane Rosalea Booth (author name)

A Peaceful Way Gatherings and Retreats

12115553_10153664369192422_7716424410471290604_n

Conscious Aging Workshops

Jane Rosalea Brown   Follow me on twitter @janerbooth

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