Stories

There are 7 main categories of stories or articles. Just below the title of each, you'll see the name of the author and one or more of these categories they checked off as relevant to what they wrote, all in purple lettering. You can do a search on any one of these categories and pull up all the stories/articles that have it listed. These categories are: Personal Transformation, Earth & Nature, Family & Relationships, Housing & Intentional Living, Health & Wellness, Law & Civics, Wealth & Abundance. Enjoy!

gayatri's picture

CBS Came and Filmed My Community!


Living Outside the Box of the Single-Family Home

When CBS producer Jeanine Ibrahim called from NY and asked whether they could film us for a “Golden Girls” segment on their CBS Early Show (link at end), I had no idea they would interview us over the phone first and then film us for an entire day. Nor did I know that it would be edited down to 3.5 minutes (aired on March 2, 2011. See link below). While Lotus Lodge, our community of about 9 people has always included men, at the time five of the women living here were in that age range. So four of us said yes!

Initial Interviews
Before the news crew converged on our home from New York and Atlanta, Jeanine called and talked with all four of us, starting with me. “Yes, we are all quite independent, each with our own jobs and schedule, our own bank accounts, our own food, and our own private room, much like 'The Golden Girls' TV show.

gayatri's picture

Morning Musings - July, 2013

Morning Musings

Many of you know my good friend Raphael Peter (former partner and co-publisher of Spirit in the Smokies Magazine for 12 years) who now lives in Virginia. He emailed asking what I am up to. As I replied, I realized how passionate I am about this catalyzing community thing. To me, this work is the culmination of everything I’ve done so far in this life and it represents no less than our collective next step in consciousness. So, if you have the time, here’s what I wrote - rather like Spirit in the Smokies days!

“Dear Raphael,
I understand Bonnie not wanting to move out of her nice big home there, or move away from her grandkids to be in an “intentional” community. Very few want to move, or can afford to. The point is, she and all of us can have community right where we live.

Johnny's picture

How Abandoning Belief Rocked My World

What I believe isn’t important.

The fact that I can put order to my thoughts, sort them into opinions and fan them into beliefs is hardly impressive. In fact, such thinking is unavoidable. It’s what our highly evolved human brains do. They compare and contrast and judge in an endless attempt to make sense of the world around us. Believing is as automatic as walking or talking or sneezing, and about as noteworthy.

There was a time when I considered my beliefs to be something more than just an assemblage of thoughts. I mistook them for something much more important. I thought they were me.

At various times in my life I believed I was a Catholic, a Unitarian, an agnostic and a secular humanist. I was a liberal, a feminist, an environmentalist and a pacifist. I took on new identities in search of a higher self and, down deep, I think, to distance myself from certain vulgarities that characterize the human condition - qualities like greed and aggression.

How Our Dreams Can Heal Us

By Sue Frederick, Author of I See Your Dream Job

Many times when I’ve been in pain, a departed loved one has come into my dreams to heal me. Here’s my most powerful example:

I met my lifelong best girlfriend Crissie in second grade on the swing set of our Catholic elementary school playground. Her crazy brilliance and insane wit bonded us instantly.

Laughter Outside the Box
Our first conversation went something like this (although she was doing all the talking): “Don’t you think the word nunnery is weird, like a cannery? Why would a girl choose to be canned…er…nunned? Do you think nuns all come out the same from a nunnery like peas from a cannery? What if Shakespeare said, ‘Get thee to a cannery!’”

lynnwoodland's picture

The Miracle Rose

Just five days before I was scheduled to leave for a month-long healing and seminar tour of Europe, my husband called from work and asked me to pick him up—he wasn’t feeling well.

I struggled not to panic as he described stroke-like symptoms of losing function in his hand and leg. 
I rushed out the door and within twenty minutes we were on our way to the emergency room. With one hand on the steering wheel and one hand on him, I calmed myself by going into a familiar healing state.

Enhancing Western Medicine
Once we were in the emergency room, an MRI test was quickly scheduled to scan his brain. The medical team asked Bill repeatedly if he was claustrophobic—the test involved a forty-minute wait in a narrow tube—and he said it wouldn’t be a problem. But once in the MRI, he panicked almost immediately and couldn’t go through with it.

lynnwoodland's picture

A Miracle Experiment

This article is an experiment in miracle-making. It’s an invitation to suspend disbelief, let your mind be boggled, and have an experience of reality beyond what you think you know for certain.

Miracles are more readily found in the slightly unsettling territory of paradox than on familiar ground so, if you’re game, let the experiment begin right now by imagining the earth shifting just a bit underfoot and that nothing you see is what it appears to be.

The more of this article you read, the more deeply you will enter into a miracle-making experiment. Modern science is demonstrating that we can’t change our minds without affecting the world around us and, as easily as reading these words, your mind, and your world, are changing. If it’s your will, you will become a miracle-maker. And if you’re feeling excited, it’s already begun.

Connecting to the Miracle of Oneness

Suffering ~ A Path of Awakening: Dissolving the Pain of Incest, Abuse, Addiction and Depression

In June of 1997, I swallowed every prescription in the medicine cabinet (there were quite a few) and chased them down with tequila – after drinking all day with a “friend.” In the wee hours of the morning, wearing only a tee shirt and my underwear, I dragged my blankie and curled up on the railroad tracks out in the woods to die.

Somehow someone found me and I was rushed to the hospital and stomach pumped. I spent two days in progressive care and then four days in the ward where they take all sharp objects and shoelaces away and have only one handle on the door – on the other side.

For years I could not recall anything about that event but awareness began leaking into my consciousness. Now I know that I was crying out to and was praying for help like I had never prayed before - desperately, and from the depths of my soul.

Fast Forward to 2008

Paving the Way

The universe was trying to tell me something. But all I heard was noise–the commotion that was coming from across the street. My neighbor was demolishing his driveway. He was breaking old pavement into pieces with a jackhammer; I could feel the vibration in every room of my house.

There was no escaping the sound of reconstruction. No matter where I went, it followed me. Leaving home was not an option. My husband had taken our only car to run errands.

This was not the quiet Saturday I had planned. I couldn’t read my book or write in my journal. I couldn’t meditate or take a peaceful walk around the block. All I could do was take aspirin and pray for the noise to stop.

The project continued for hours; the noise was relentless. At one point my head was pounding, so I sat on the basement stairs, closed my eyes and made myself breathe. While I was covering my ears with my hands, thoughts surfaced out of nowhere. Maybe I’m hearing this noise for a reason.

Would Buddha take the Swine Flu Vaccine?

As of October 23, 2009, The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continue to inundate us with chilling swine flu tales: 46 states report a swine flu outbreak; 20,000 hospitalized with the Swine Flu since April; 1000 swine flu deaths in the US alone. In response, President Obama declared the Swine Flu outbreak a national emergency.

Chilling facts but There's Other Information

Behind this statistical mask, the pharmaceuticals tout their latest miracle drug to combat this enemy. In turn, our government urges and even demands our participation in a massive inoculation.

Panicked, many of us respond in fear. Due to this, people across the country wait in line to receive the swine flu vaccine. In Los Angeles County, according to Dr. Jonathan E. Fielding, the county's director of public health, the county clinics vaccinate about 300 people an hour.

Given this information, what would Buddha do?

Travels to West Africa & Home to Myself

We landed late in the evening and yet it was hot. A dry heat hugged me when I stepped off of the plane and first touched her. I know now why Africa is called the "Motherland".

I first truly felt her about 12 hours after we landed. She moved so slowly and deeply and anciently. I felt the vibration reach through me and touch a place within and deeper than my bones...a place I had not yet consciously visited in this lifetime. She felt more like the Great Great Ancient Primal Grandmother to me as I allowed myself to experience her.

This was not the vibration of Mother Earth that I was used to feeling in the mountains of North Carolina or at the edge of the ocean or even in the western US. This was deeper than the deepest resonance I had known.

She worked diligently in my bones the entire time and birthed my energetic and physical systems from new depths. Frequencies I had not yet experienced burst forth from beneath my flesh and moved through me.

Ancient Memories