Wednesday, December 31, 2014

The Matriarchal Order

I have been thinking the last few days about the idea of ordaining women. I didn't really follow that whole hoopla earlier this year, for the same reason I don't follow most campaigns, political or social--because they are a sideshow. It's all part of maya--the illusion-- and the really good show is not happening on the level of maya. You have to go inward. (The Kingdom of God is within you-kind of a thing.) But lately I was thinking how Satan always has a counterfeit. An illusory, maya counterfeit. And in this case, what not many people were aware of, is that that there is an ordaining of women happening. But it's not happening on the worldly plane. And no amount of protesting will get you in.

The truth is, we have entered the feminine, heart centered age, and there is a kind of Matriarchal order which is being restored. I don't know all that this means. But I do know that Heavenly Mother, and couple other amazing women, specifically Mary, the earthly mother of God, and Mary Magdeline (who are acting as her counselors of sorts), are going around and calling up and chosing women--humble, meek, loving, charitable, obedient, unsuspecting, yet powerful women, and anointing them to be queens and priestesses.

In the holy temples of God, where we make covenants, this is something we are promised we can become. So it can happen. In this life. And is happening. Right now. What exactly this means for the world, or for each individual woman or her family, I don't know yet, but I do know it is beautiful and right and peaceful and not a sideshow. And it is certainly something that is a righteous desire for all women, and I hope you go inside and ponder if for yourself.

When I was pondering this I was led to these scriptures in the Doctrine and Covenants 78:

For if you will that I give unto you a place in the celestial world, you must prepare yourselves by doing the things which I have commanded you and required of you.
And now, verily thus saith the Lord, it is expedient that all things be done unto my glory, by you who are joined together in this order.... sit in council with  the saints which are in Zion;
Otherwise Satan seeketh to turn their hearts away from the truth that they become blinded and understand not the things which are prepared for them. 
.... Behold, this is the preparation wherewith I prepare you,... [skipping lots of good stuff here you should go and read]...That you may come up unto the crown prepared for you, and be made rulers over many kingdoms, saith the Lord God...
Verily, verily, I say unto you, ye are little children, and ye have not as yet understood how great blessings the Father hath in his own hands and prepared for you. 

Every time I read these verses there is more here to discover. I skipped some parts for the sake of online reading ease and attention span. But they are good. The whole chapter is great. I encourage a deep reading of it for a few days in a row.

Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Spreads From the Book

Today I finally finished publishing all the chapters and stories of my book online. Which is just in time because now you are going to desperately want the manual, which you can only get by buying the book. Which is so close to being in your hands. Here are some screen shots of the proofs I am proofing right now. This is the last round of proofs so it should be really done after this and once all the page numbers are fixed I'll have to add them to the index. And a few other last details. And then it will be in your hands. It is going to be so beautiful. And bigger than I thought. It is about 313 pages plus all the front matter. And it will be full color, which means it won't be cheap, but if you donated to the cause you get as many as you want at cost. So get excited and pray for a January baby.

This is the top mantras section

This is the beginning of the manual part of the book. 

Tuning in

A kirya

Some meditations

I Had a Dream - Janice's Story

I Had a Dream
by Janice Madsen

About six months before Felice started offering online meditation classes, I had a dream. This is what I wrote in my journal:
I had a dream last night. Not a regular kind of dream where nothing makes sense and nothings is quite what it seems, but a telling dream, an important dream, a message from God. This dream was filled with people I know and love. It was a very clear dream.
The most important part of this dream was the feeling I had of peace and tranquility that was repeated throughout my dream. I felt so loved and so happy. These feelings are not often present in my daily life. In my dream, I was filled with the knowledge that I was doing exactly what Heavenly Father wanted me to do to best serve and help those around me––to share with them the love of Heavenly Father.
I woke up knowing what I am to do with my life––or rather, what would make me the most happy and what Heavenly Father would have me do [my life’s mission]. This is something I have spent a great amount of time trying to figure out through high school and college.

I am to study natural healing––particularly the mental/subconscious/spiritual side. I know nothing about this and don’t even know what to call it for sure. But I know I will be led to the specifics when the time is right. I need to learn all I can in the areas of yoga, meditation, and hypnosis healing. This will be for my benefit and for the benefit of those around me. Now for my dream.
In my dream, I was in a class. I am not exactly sure what all this class entailed, but it was on the subject of yoga and meditation, along with some degree of hypnosis and offering suggestions to the mind on a subconscious level. I was taking this semester-long class and was feeling very frustrated because I had joined late and had missed some important information. I felt I has missed so much of the class and didn't know what was going on.

The teacher didn't mind at all that I had missed part of the class. She was just so happy that I was there. She was someone I knew very well, a dear friend. During our meditation, she spoke directly to my mind and spirit. The words she spoke were very specific and distinct. During my dream, I could remember them word-for-word, although I wasn't sure what the words meant. It was almost as if it was in another language that only my spirit and heart could understand. Now that I am awake, I can no longer remember the words. But what I do remember is the great feeling of peace and happiness and the love that came over me as my teacher impressed these words upon me. These feelings stayed with me throughout the rest of my dream and when I first woke up….
Upon waking from this dream, I felt it was so important and was compelled to get up immediately and write it down. As I have thought through this dream and what it means, the thing that keeps coming to me is that I am to study and learn to meditate. Through this, and more so through the associations and great friends I will meet on my journey, I will be able to best help and serve others. I will gain a great knowledge and testimony of the Savior and the love, peace, and happiness He has to offer. Through my journey I will be able to share His love with others and bless their lives as well.
After I had this dream, I spent some time thinking about what specifically I should do. I looked into different yoga teacher certifications, but nothing felt right. Six months after I had this dream, I came across Felice’s online meditation webinar. I immediately knew that this is what I needed to learn and the direction I should take. Up until that point, I had never heard of Kundalini Yoga and had no experience in meditation.
It was a year ago this month that I started my first forty-day meditation. It has been a year of learning and growth, a year of healing and forgiveness, and a year of understanding and drawing nearer to my Savior. Through this journey, I have been reminded time and time again of the love that our Heavenly Father has for me and for each of His children. I have been blessed many times to feel the same feelings of peace, happiness, and love that I felt in my dream as my teacher spoke to my heart. I still have so much to learn, but I am beginning to be truly happy each day and to trust and rely on my Savior. I am so happy to be on this meditation journey. What a wonderful journey it is.   

Weird, But Amazingly Effective - Bryenn's Story

Weird, But Amazingly Effective
by Breynn

I have no idea why I decided to start meditating. I came across Felice’s website through The Gift of Giving Life blog, which I found through another friend’s blog. A round about way to get there, I know. I really was feeling out of touch with my life and needed some way to release the pressure that was building. I decided to give meditation a try even though it sounded weird to me. I am glad I did.
I have been meditating for about seventy days at the time of this writing. The first thing I noticed that changed was some of my habits, particularly my nail-biting habit. I haven't bit my nails since about the second week, when I started doing the meditation for releasing addictions. It feels great. I have tried to stop so many times. I am thirty-four, and I have bit my nails since forever. My mom tried to get me to stop when I was little. As an adult I have tried everything I can think of to quit––yucky nail polish, self-determination, pretty nail polish, anything else that promised to work. But nothing did. So when I started meditation and soon after was able to stop biting my nails, I was amazed.
Some other things I have noticed that have changed in my life are things that I have wanted to change or implement for a long time but have never had the ability to really make them work. I have been studying my scriptures every morning. I have always been good at reading everyday, but I had gotten into the habit of reading two verses or so before bed. Not so much studying, but more or less not wanting to give up what I knew could be good for me. Now I have been studying every morning. It has been nice. I am enjoying it more too. I hope to just get better and better the more I read.
I have also started reading the Book of Mormon with my kids every morning. We have talked about doing this for a while, but I have just never had the energy to really pull it off. We have been reading for about three weeks or so now. It’s just a little bit––some days a few verses, some days more. But the kids are enjoying it and asking good questions. We have also been doing scripture lessons at night before we read books. The kids are actually learning a lot about the teachings of the scriptures and LDS church history. They are very tuned into the lessons we are learning. It is nice to see them understanding the church and the gospel.
I have noticed that my dishes are getting done so much more easily now. I used to have a pile of dishes left for me after the kids were put to sleep. It was really depressing to be tired after getting them to sleep and realize that I had a mountain of dishes to do. I have been getting dishes done right after dinner now. It hasn't been hard or a huge change or anything that I have felt. I just have gotten them done. We haven't been turning on the TV at nights as much anymore. Not that I have stressed about it or anything, it just hasn't been turned on. Positive changes.
One big thing for me was watching late-night TV. I had a love/hate relationship with late-night TV. At night, I felt pulled to just sit and veg in front of the TV. I needed my "me time." During the day when I was very conscious, I realized that I really hated the effects that came from watching TV at night. I hated how tired I was. I also hated the shows I was watching. They left me with bad feelings and with bad images in my mind. Other shows were just not morally good. During the day I could tell this practice was not good, but at night I just couldn't stop. But I have finally stopped. I haven't watched late-night TV for a while now. Occasionally I will watch something small, but it is always uplifting and usually short. I don't feel the same pull anymore to the TV. I have been going to bed instead. Sometimes I will read for a bit first, but it feels great to go to bed now. I feel so much better.
After writing this all out, I can see there have been many things that have changed in my life. The only thing that I have really made myself do daily is meditate. I really do make sure that I do that. The rest has just fallen into place more or less. It is all stuff that I have been wanting to change or implement for a long time. None of these things were new goals for me, but they have all started working in my life after I began my daily meditation.
Interestingly, none of these things were my top priorities for why I started to meditate. I have three things that are incredibly important to me that I need divine help with. Three things that I know I cannot do on my own. None of these three things have been changed (that I can see right now). Maybe things are changing and I just can’t see it yet. It would be easy to look at those three things and not see any change and decide that meditation just isn't helping. But I can’t ignore all of the other things that have been changed so far. The three things I am still waiting on are big—like really big. Maybe they will just take time, or maybe some prep work needs to be done first before they can change. I don't know really. But I have seen too many results from meditating to quit now. I am really enjoying it. To be honest, I still find meditation a little weird, but I also find it amazingly effective.



The light shineth in darkness, and the darkness comprehendeth it not.—John 1:5

Ever since Adam and Eve were cast out of the Garden of Eden and were separated from God, humans have lived in a world of opposites. Sometimes when people begin to meditate, they experience an opposition response, or what some people call interference. Interference is basically the darkness in and around you that is having a hissy fit about all the light you are adding. Your subconscious is also programmed to resist change, regardless of its value, and the devil and his angels don’t want people to clean out their minds, commune with God, or practice or teach any science that can lead to becoming more like God.  
Interference can manifest in unique ways. I won’t give you any examples, because I don’t want them to become suggestions. The important thing to remember is that if anything strange (in a bad way) starts to happen, don’t stop. Keep meditating, and cast out the scorner and his minions.
From the beginning, Satan threatened to do everything he could to posses our bodies, and he’s following through. The reality is that dark spirits can access our bodies any time we sin or invite them in through dark emotions, like hate, anger, and unrighteous judgment. These emotions, even though they may be buried in the subconscious, create an emotional back door through which these entities can enter. Often these dark spirits work very subtly to avoid detection (sometimes for years), and at other times, though less frequently, they use a lot of dramatic flare and scare tactics to prevent forward motion.
Even when we are doing what is right, Satan may try to attack, as Elder Jeffrey R. Holland reminds us. He explains that opposition turns up almost anyplace something good has happened or is about to happen. He reminds us of two examples of the adversary trying to stop righteousness from progressing:

Joseph said he had scarcely begun his prayer when he felt a power of astonishing influence come over him. Thick darkness, as he described it, gathered around him and seemed bent on his utter destruction. But he exerted all his powers to call upon God to deliver him out of the power of this enemy, and as he did so a pillar of light brighter than the noonday sun descended gradually until it rested upon him. At the very moment of the light’s appearance, he found himself delivered from the destructive power that had held him bound. What then followed is the greatest epiphany since the events surrounding the crucifixion, resurrection, and ascension of Christ in the meridian of time. The Father and the Son appeared to Joseph Smith, and the dispensation of the fulness of times had begun. (See JS—H 1:15–20.)[1]

Thankfully this darkness didn’t send Joseph running or stop his quest for truth. Joseph’s example shows us what to do when Satan shows up: Hold stronger to the light.
Satan also attempted to interfere with righteous progress after Moses had a face-to-face conversation with God and the Glory of God was upon Moses. Though it seems ridiculous that Satan tried to tempt Moses after such a spiritual high, Satan’s pattern is to constantly oppose the light. If he can’t stop you from beginning, he may show up at the end of a spiritual high, as he did to Moses, saying, “Worship me” (Moses 1:12).
Moses of course didn’t buy it, and he dismissed the devil (Moses 1:16). But Satan only became more nasty, and for a brief moment when Moses began to fear, he “saw the bitterness of hell” (Moses 1:20), which is instructive about the affects of fear. When Moses finally called upon God, he was able to pull himself together. Then, in the name of the Savior––those were the the magic words––Moses commanded Satan to depart (Moses 1:21).[2] Satan left, and Moses had another amazing vision wherein he beheld God, and God gave him the power to command the waters (Moses 1:25), which as you may know came in handy later on in Moses’s life.
May these examples give you hope and also help you stay strong. Elder Holland encourages, “After you have gotten the message, . . . go forward. Don’t fear, don’t vacillate, don’t quibble, don’t whine.”[3]  
Kundalini Yoga and Meditation might be new or strange to you, but many of the Lord’s mysteries might be considered strange to outsiders. We can follow the example of Jesus Christ, who always did the will of His father, regardless of how unusual the instructions. For example, Jesus never questioned His divine intuition to heal by spitting in a blind man’s eyes (Mark 8:23) or by sticking His fingers in a deaf man’s ears (Mark 7:33).
Trust in God. Trust the feelings of the Spirit as you read this book. Forty or one thousand days from now, keep trusting those feelings. Kundalini Yoga and Meditation has been the answer to the prayers of many worthy and active members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. As Elder Holland says, “Stay the course and see the beauty of life unfold for you.”[4]

[1]Jeffrey R. Holland, “Cast Not Away Therefore Your Confidence” (devotional, Brigham Young University, Provo, UT, March 2, 1999), accessed March 21, 2014,
[2] The scriptures and the temple ordinances are full of examples of how to cast out devils. Other resources are listed in the resource section at the end of this book.
[3] “Cast Not Away Therefore Your Confidence.”
[4]  Ibid.

Forever Changed - Bonnie's Story

by Bonnie Hansen

When I first decided to do the Intro to Kundalini Yoga Meditation Webinar, I had no idea how it would change my life, my perspective, and my soul. I just wanted more peace, more clarity, a closer relationship with God, and a greater ability to handle the everyday stresses of life.
Just this morning as I pondered what I would say if someone asked me to stop my meditation practice, I realized that to give this up would be like asking me to stop saying my prayers. It would be like asking me to build an impenetrable wall between me and my Savior. It would be asking me to return to the depressed, discouraged, frightened, wounded little girl I had been most of my life. It would be asking me to give up my newfound ability to stay calmer with my kids, my ability to now truly see and appreciate their awesomeness and their worth to Heavenly Father. It would be taking away a valuable tool to help my husband heal from his own childhood wounds. It would be like asking me to sever the connections between me and Heavenly Father, my Savior, and my higher self that I have built and formed one daily meditation session at a time for over a year now. I hope I am never asked to give that up, because I never could give up the sweet, blissful connection to God and myself—my true self—I feel each morning.
Meditation hasn’t always been easy or blissful. Some days, especially in the beginning, I learned things I didn’t want to know, things that ripped my heart out, things that filled me with grief. But I was never alone. Always, God was there with me, guiding me, comforting me, holding me. Ancestors were there too, and so were angelic friends I have no mortal memory of. I felt loved and cared for and knew that I was on the right path. After each new revelation and subsequent healing, I was lighter, happier, and more in tune with who I really am. It was time for the darkness to leave, and I was ready for it. The beauty of it was that it came gently, only as fast as I could handle, only as fast as I had the faith to believe that, with God’s help, I could overcome it.
Every new webinar Felice offered I signed up for. Each class always had one more song or mantra, one more meditation, one more tidbit of information that I needed just at that time to help me continue and progress on my healing journey. I learned again how completely God is involved in the details of our lives, how He brings people into our lives just at the time that we need it. I learned in my heart, and not just my mind, that I am strong, that I am valued by the One who matters most, that I have a divine purpose to help heal all my brothers and sisters.
I stand up straighter and taller now. I look younger. I am healthier and fitter. I am happier. I love people more. I am gaining a greater ability to forgive myself and others, no matter how grave or serious the offense. All of it is covered by the Savior’s Atonement, and I have learned that on a deep, personal level during my daily sadhana. I have learned that He has never left me, that I can give Him all my pain and He can heal me, no matter how deep the pain or the wound. I knew these things on an intellectual level before, but now I know them deep in my heart because I have felt them. Kundalini Yoga and Meditation has awakened my true self from a deep sleep. I now feel truly alive. I know Kundalini Yoga and Meditation can change the world because it has forever changed me.

I Asked That They Leave -Chelsea's Story

I Asked That They Leave
Chelsea Proctor

Meditating has changed my life. That's probably not a super uncommon thing to hear, but it's huge for me. Before I started Kundalini Yoga, I very rarely prayed and I couldn't remember the last time that I had read my scriptures. It's kind of embarrassing. I have not been able to finish the forty-day challenge yet because I keep missing days, but I do know that from meditating I have been able to draw closer to the Lord. My prayers have changed in how I say them. My scripture study is still very minimal, though I do it almost every day.
I don't mean to focus on the dark side, but I think it is worth sharing. A week ago I was going strong with my meditation. The problem was I started feeling miserable and guilty but couldn't remember what it was that I had done wrong because there wasn't anything to merit those feelings. When I'd meditate, I’d started feeling like there was someone else there and I didn't feel safe. One night I went to bed without meditating but couldn't sleep, so I got up and did my meditation. I felt a bit better and went back to bed and decided to pray. I prayed about those feelings I was getting, and I felt that it was probably due to bad spirits making me feel the way I did. I then asked that if this was true that they leave. Almost immediately after asking that, my mind cleared and my body relaxed dramatically so that I could finally go to sleep, which I did promptly after praying.
I don't know why these things seem to happen to me (it isn't the first time), but I am grateful for what I have learned so far with meditating while implementing the other very important things I need to do to grow closer to God. I've seen in my own life that Kundalini Yoga and Meditation and the gospel work together, and miracles can and will happen if put together. I love it!

Lifting the Fog - Robyn's Story

by Robyn Allgood

Negative thought patterns are like cancer in the brain. After the death of my son, I didn’t realize how many negative thoughts I had allowed to grow until I initiated the Forty-Day Meditation Challenge at the urging of my friend, Felice. And while I don't think that I held on to negative thoughts about my son’s death, there were other kinds of negative thoughts that I had fed myself that needed healing.
Other than missing meditation while very sick and for a time after having my baby, I have been meditating for almost a year. I am letting go of the negative thoughts bit by bit and allowing the Atonement to heal my mind. I believe that is what meditation (among other spiritual endeavors like prayer, scripture study, and singing a hymn) do. They allow the Atonement in to heal. So the fog is lifting, little by little, and I thank heaven for it.

One thing I have noticed is that whenever I am nearing a milestone, I run into some form of opposition to complete the 40, 80, or 120 days. Once I realize that I am almost to the milestone, I realize why I have been doubting myself or feeling unmotivated. Satan does not want me to experience the change and transformation that come by sustained, diligent meditation. For me, this becomes the catalyst to see it through. It is after climbing the wall that I see the blessings.

Healing My Childhood - Hannah's Story

by Hannah

When Felice started doing the meditation webinar, I felt a strong urge to join the class, but I put it off, being too busy with small children, having a husband with a low-paying job, and scraping through with finances. I put the webinar out of my mind for a year or so, until a good friend pestered me to join the class as it was repeating. She kept telling me to e-mail Felice. And so I did (eventually), and I will be grateful forever for that friend and for Felice. Meditation, and knowing how to do it effectively, has changed how I think, and it's still changing me and making me a better me.
When I started my first forty days, my intention was to find myself easily having more patience. I realized that for years, I was instinctively reacting to my children in the same way my mother had reacted to me as a child. Despite my rational belief in gentle, positive parenting, I was still failing. I was lashing out and being angry over things that I felt I ought to have been able to cope with rationally and patiently. By the end of the forty days, I no longer felt the urge to lash out. Not ever. The instinct had been totally driven out of me, to the extent that I am amazed when I look back on the day and how challenging things have been and how calm and patient I have remained. I know it is my practice of Kundalini Yoga and Meditation, working through the Atonement of Christ, that this is possible.
My favorite part of the forty days was the time at home-education camp. I sat in the back of my car with the boot open and chanted Kirtan Kriya to the setting sun in the middle of the Peak District. The experience was beautiful. I remember during one meditation session, as I was chanting I felt the Spirit so strongly. I felt it testify that Jesus had atoned and given His life for us. I knew I was loved and a cherished sister.
I always feel far more positive, energized, and ready to face whatever is in store for me after Felice’s classes. It always feels like there is something there just for me, just what I needed to hear or the exercise my body needed to experience.
After my forty days, I added in a meditation for releasing childhood anger. I can feel it working in me. My face tingles, and I feel my body shedding the incorrect beliefs and the cellular memories it has been holding onto. During a difficult time at the beginning, after much prayer and a lot of tears, I felt the presence of my Heavenly Parents, dressed in white, on either side of me, holding me and letting me know that They loved me. I knew in that moment that I would be okay, that this was something that would pass, and that I could come out stronger when it was finished.

Keep Up And You'll Be Kept Up

Keep Up and You’ll Be Kept Up

Susan thought that after forty days of meditation, all of her problems would go away. But they didn’t, so she quit meditating. They definitely did not go away after that.
Ashley completed forty days of Kirtan Kriya, and it changed her life significantly. She stopped meditating because she figured she had already received all the benefits. Her life quickly changed back to the way it was before.
I think that forty is a nice round symbolic number, and it’s fun to do a forty-day meditation. But the fortieth day is not meant to be the end, or a one-time event, and expectations should be managed or should be released to God. Here is what the teachings of Kundalini Yoga say:

It is written that, in 40 days, a practitioner using Kundalini Yoga as an experience creates uplift and liberation. It may take 20 years using other techniques. But that was assuming the person who engages in this should first be mentally stable, have strong habits, have a clear mind, and a pure body. Most people do not fit these qualifications and it takes a little longer to use the same practices to clear the subconscious and organize the mind toward the soul and the Infinite, instead of toward our finiteness and neurosis.[1]

The above quote explains why results vary and why religious people who live a clean life and who are stable are able to accelerate faster. However, even though the technology is fast, it is not always helpful to look for proof of your progress or to compare your progress with others. Of course, proofs will come along the way and you’ll take note of them, but don’t get hung up on proof. Some people may see colors or feel sensations in their bodies, and while these experiences can be fun, Yogi Bhajan called them “glitter at the bottom of the ladder.” They don’t necessarily indicate a mighty change or awakening, which, through the technology of Kundalini Yoga as taught by Yogi Bhajan®, can often happen very subtly and without fireworks.
There may be days that nothing at all seems to be changing, but things are happening outside of your awareness. I challenge people to complete a forty-day meditation because forty days in a row is the right amount of time to make a change from one state of being to another, but your own personal meditations can be done for ninety days, one hundred twenty days, a thousand days, or your entire life. Real transformation continues to unfolds in layers as each beat of the heart rewrites your destiny.
There may be a honeymoon period with meditation, there may be interference, and there may also be times when it seems your “progress” has fallen off. Maybe tragedy strikes, challenges arise, or unhealed parts of yourself come up. It is important to remember that these things are sacred too. After all, happiness and sorrow are the opposing forces that swirl the heart chakra. In difficult times, the only thing to do is to keep up. I have been through dark times. I testify that if you keep up, you will be kept up and there will be glorious days ahead.
I love the following quote from M. Katherine Thomas:

With eyes to see, we find that we are participants in a highly interactive universe, a dynamic laboratory, in which the Governing Powers lead us and even provoke us to ‘be conformed to the image of [God’s] Son’ (Romans 8:29). To this end, the Lord, knowing what we do not yet understand about our own soul, what has not yet been healed or resolved in us, allows circumstances and events to provoke the tutorials which will set us free in love. [2]

I’ve found that if you want to assess your progress, the best practice is to circle a date on the calendar nine months from now. We travel through life in nine-month cycles, and it seems the right amount of time for rebirth. On the date you’ve circled, look back and assess your progress. You might find that the landscape looks quite different.

One part of the sadhana should stay constant long enough for you to master, or at least experience, the changes evoked by a single technique. Each kriya and mantra has its individual effects, although they all elevate you toward a cosmic consciousness. Learn to value the pricelessness of one kriya, and all others will be understood in a clearer light.—Yogi Bhajan, The Aquarian Teacher: KRI International Kundalini Yoga Teacher Training Level I Yoga Manual (Santa Cruz, NM: Kundalini Research Institute, 2007),150

[1] Kundalini Research Institute, KRI International Teacher Training Manual, Level 1, 4th ed. (Santa Cruz, NM:  Kundalini Research Institute, 2007), 286.
[2] M. Catherine Thomas, Light in the Wilderness: Explorations in the Spiritual Life (Salt Lake City, UT: Digital Legend Press, 2010), 164.

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

You Already Are What You Are Becoming

This is is re-post from a few years ago. It was a talk I gave in church on Christmas Day. It's one my all time favorite and most popular posts. I hope you enjoy it no matter what time of year you read it. 

Good morning and Merry Christmas. My name is Felice. I would like to honor everyone for being here today on this beautiful Christmas Day. And I would like to invite everyone age 4 and up, (because this talk is for all ages,) to put down whatever you may have in your hands, unless it’s a baby,  place both feet on the floor if you can, and take the deepest breath that you’ve taken all week. And whatever it took you to get here today, just let that go, and just listen as I read you a poem:

4. Mary’s Visit with Elizabeth

It all went well from the very start,
Although sometimes when climbing she was aware
Of the amazing thing far inside her body.
Then she would stop, and breathe, on the top of a high
Hill in Judea. It wasn’t the land around her,
It was her own abundance that surrounded her.
As she walked she felt: No woman will ever
Have any more largeness than I have now.

And she recognized a longing to place her hand
On her cousin’s big belly, farther along toward birth.
The two women bent toward each other;
Each touched the other’s dress and touched the hair.

Each one, full of her own holy treasure,
Found a safe place at the side of her kin.
Ah, the savior in Mary was only a blossom
But the joy of it roused the little Baptist
In the womb to hop and leap about.

That poem was from Rilke.

And now, I have an important message for everyone here. And it is that you are all smart and good and you have within you the ability to achieve beyond your wildest imaginings. And because it’s December, and the New Year is just around the corner, perhaps you have already been thinking about some of those dreams or resolutions for change and that you’d like in the New Year.

Well, what I am here to tell you, is that what you project onto the future, is actually here now. In this moment. The dream or change that you desire, has already entered your heart and is no longer even there any more. It’s now in your blood stream.

I shared this part of Rilke’s poem from "The Life of the Virgin Mary," because I love the image of baby Jesus as a little blossom in the womb. And how Mary is just beginning to feel the wonder and awe of her pregnancy and the changes to her body.

We know, but we sometimes forget, that Mary did not become Christ’s mother at the moment of his birth. He had to grow inside her, underneath her heart for 10 months, just like all babies get here.

And that is how almost everything works. Almost everything grows inside of us, and then is born. In fact. Rilke, the same poet who I just read, is famous for saying “Everything is Gestation and then birthing.” Gestation, for the kids who are listening is just a big word for pregnancy. And when he’s saying that, he’s not talking necessarily about human babies. But we grow and birth other kinds of babies all the time--like, a beautiful art project, or a book, or a change in behavior. All these things grow in our hearts for a while before we may actually make the art piece or decide to get baptized or to get married or become a superhero.

My daughter told me 9 months ago, when she was 4 years old, that when she grew up, she wanted to be a prophet. And so I asked her if she knew what was involved with prophet work. And she said no. So I told her, that according to the Bible Dictionary prophets (not to be confused with THE prophet), prophets teach righteousness, and they testify of Christ, so any of God’s people can be prophets or prophetesses. And she thought about that, and she realized that she was already doing that, and I agree, she is a great prophetess.

She also wants to be a mom when she grows up. And even though she doesn’t have a real baby. She is such a good mama to her kids.

So whatever your intentions are for the new year. I’d love to invite you to embrace the idea of how you already are, or do or have what you want and hope for.

We know that Jesus Christ, as a wee little baby, did not know everything about of his divine mission at first--the scriptures say “from grace to grace.” But that didn’t change the fact that even as an infant he was the Savior of the world.

Another example is Adam and Eve? Both Adam and God, when they were talking about  Eve, called her the mother of all living, before she ever had a baby.

And thousands of years before Jesus was ever born and did his Atonement for our sins and sadnesses,-- everyone on earth including Adam and Eve, could use to the benefits and power of the Atonement, as if it already happened.

When I think about the young Virgin Mary, I’m sure that that the angel’s visit to her was the beginning of her relationship with Jesus. She had to have already known that he would come, and loved him.

Just like even though my daughter is 5 years old. My relationship with her has been much longer than that. And, I was an author long before I ever published a book. And I was a healer, long before I ever knew I would become one.  

I think it’s wonderful, that even though we know Jesus was really born in the spring time, that we celebrate His birth in December, just a week before the birth of a new calendar year when so many people decide to be better. And it’s because of Christ and his life, that we can do that.

Birth stories are magical and inspirational (especially the ones in my book). And I think it’s no mistake that one of the most powerful and most told stories in the Christian Cannon, is a birth story. And that baptism, that first ordinance that gets us in the door to Christ is likened unto birth.

If I could have one wish for everyone this Christmas day it would be that we could all take that pure, wonder and awe and miracles-are-possible spirit of Christmas with us into the New Year, and remember that everything is gestation and then birthing. And whatever your goals, even if you can’t tell the birth story of that goal yet, remember each step of the journey has value. And by appreciating each day and each step, you honor the pregnancy as well as the birth. And if you ever feel stretched or heavy along the way, perhaps you’ll stop on a hillside to breathe and recognize that you are carrying holy cargo, and perhaps it is not heaviness, but abundance that surrounds you.

And if I could have a second wish it would be that we can all recognize in each other, the good fruit we are each gestating. And have joy for each other and for what we are becoming, like the little John the Baptist, who hopped and lept about for joy in Elisabeth’s womb.

And I say all of this in the name of our savior Jesus Christ, amen.

Friday, December 19, 2014

The Symbolism of the Sheepskin

The Symbolism of the Sheepskin

Through the ages, yogis have sat on animal skins for meditation. In the story of Gideon in the Hebrew Bible, a sheepskin was selected as a sacred sign between Gideon and God in Gideon’s request for a second witness of the Lord’s words:
Behold, I will put a fleece of wool in the floor; and if the dew be on the fleece only, and it be dry upon all the earth beside, then shall I know that thou wilt save Israel by mine hand, as thou hast said. (Judges 6:37)
It is traditional (though not required) for many Kundalini Yoga practitioners to sit on a sheepskin while meditating and practicing yoga. The sheepskin is great for yoga because is soft and comfortable for the ankles. Yogi Bhajan recommended sheepskin for meditation because it is a natural fiber, it grounds the practitioner, and it blesses and liberates the soul of the dead animal. Indeed, many people experience deeper states of connection to God when using a sheepskin rather than a sticky yoga mat[1] or cushion.
I find it difficult to ignore the symbolism of the sheepskin. Starting in the days of Adam, men were required to offer a blood sacrifice to God—an unblemished, first-born male animal, which of course, was symbolic of the sacrifice of the coming Christ. Then Jesus fulfilled this law and ended the need for blood sacrifice:
And ye shall offer up unto me no more the shedding of blood; yea, your sacrifices and your burnt offerings shall be done away. . . . And ye shall offer for a sacrifice unto me a broken heart and a contrite spirit. And whoso cometh unto me with a broken heart and a contrite spirit, him will I baptize with fire and with the Holy Ghost. (3 Nephi 9:19–20)  

One student, Kylie, described her relationship with sheepskin as follows: “I got sheepskin and used it first on a new moon. I had a big realization that His sacrifice is the foundation that makes my sacrifice possible. He is our foundation for progression and enlightenment. It makes it all the more meaningful to sit on a literal foundation reminding me of the ultimate sacrifice upon which all my life and progression rest. So great!” [2]

[1]It is said that synthetic yoga mats can shrink the aura by one third.
[2] Personal communication via Facebook group. Accessed March 8, 2014.