StarFire Teja’s StarFire Friday Blessing: May You Feel the Warmth of the Sunshine Blogger Award!

 

May you feel the healing rays of sunshine illuminating your mind.

May you smile and laugh with the sun in your heart.

May your weekend include some special moments with shiny happy people!

May you feel the warmth of the Sunshine Blogger Award!

 

Thank you so much, Andrea, of The Hummingbird’s Journal Blog, for nominating the StarFire Teja Blog for the Sunshine Blogger Award!

Andrea, I understand you were nominated by Julie Krupp (of the Blog, Julie Krupp: Enhanced Perspective), who said, “The Sunshine Blogger Award is peer recognition for bloggers that inspire positivity and joy. The Rules: Thank the blogger who nominated you; Answer the 11 questions the blogger asked you; nominate 11 new blogs to receive the award and write them 11 new questions; list the rules and display the Sunshine Blogger Award in your post or on your blog.”

Since reading your post, “The Sunshine Blogger Award,” I have read several other bloggers’ posts from when they received this award, and the image that came to me was of the R.E.M. song “Shiny Happy People,” so I just watched that video before sitting down to type this post. (If you’re ever feeling grumpy, watch that video and you’ll feel better!)

Each of us is approaching the task of this Sunshine Blogger Award post uniquely, and yet there is a common unifying thread among the posts, which is the spreading of happy sunshine throughout the blogosphere! I am grateful to be part of this sunshine spreading, although I confess that I’m not much of a rule follower. I even regularly break the rules I make for myself! So I won’t be following all the rules exactly, but my intention is to help you happy up through reading this post.

In my life right now I am working on several creative projects simultaneously. While revising my next book, Reaching for Orange: Practices, Visualizations, & Blessings to Help You Happy Up Your Life, I am still blogging occasionally (which has kinda turned into more than occasionally), plus planning to lead healing circles again soon, volunteering for hospice, and visioning an online ministry in which I will offer spiritual care support sessions to the dying and their families via video calls. So, it is really challenging for me to keep up with Facebook, Instagram, and WordPress Blogs… which means that I only follow a few blogs, and the ones I would nominate for the Sunshine Blogger Award have already been nominated…

So, I spent some time searching on WordPress for some new blogs to follow… This was challenging for me because for one thing my computer is really old and slow… and also I am rather particular. Because I am an HSP (highly sensitive person), a blog has to be very pleasing to my eyes and calming to my system for me to be able to read it. When blogs are too flashy and there’s too much going on visually, my nervous system flips out. And, I am committed to reducing the suffering of the animals, so if a blog has anything about eating meat, I can’t support it…

So! After an hour of tedious searching, I found a blog that felt really good to me energetically. It was called “Sacred Touches” and I loved the black background with the bright sunflower. It was so simple and artistic, and while scrolling through it I really liked Natalie’s vibe… and then, I saw the post called “My mom Natalie,” and my heart just sunk. I knew immediately that Natalie had died… and sure enough, the post was written by her daughter, nine days after her mom had passed away.

I do not believe in “coincidences.” Here I am, volunteering for hospice, sitting with dying patients and their families, and reading book after book on death and dying. (Currently reading Grave Matters: A Journey Through The Modern Funeral Industry to A Natural Way of Burial.) And after an hour of searching I finally found a pleasing blog… whose creator just left this earthly plane on April 8th.

After bowing to Natalie’s beautiful, artistic spirit, I continued searching, and I came upon a blog created by happy shiny people. So I am nominating Lee and Jane of the beach house kitchen blog for the Sunshine Blogger Award. They look like some seriously positive, good vibes people who I would love to meet someday, and I’m looking forward to getting to know their blog and recipes!
I hope you will check them out also!

Jane and Lee, you look like you are quite busy peeps, so I will only ask you 4 questions (and then I will answer the 11 questions to me from Andrea).

1. What is your favorite place on Earth?

2. Which of the 5 elements (Earth, Air, Fire, Water, Space) do you feel most drawn to?

3. Do you have any daily spiritual practices that nourish you?

4. What are your favorite healing stones and crystals?

 

Lastly, I’ll answer the questions from Andrea

Sunshine_Blogger_Award_StarFireTeja

1. What is one of your life dreams/goals? ~ To spend three weeks enjoying “My Dream Vacay in Sedona, Arizona.”

2. Who do you look up to? ~ So many! I could really get carried away here, but I’ll just limit myself to Oprah, and to my current hero, Thich Nhat Hanh.

3. What is your favorite color? ~ It is a tie between Orange and Red… and then I love accents of bright emerald green, violet purple, and gold!

4. What is your favorite writing-related memory? ~ I can’t say that I have a favorite one… there have been so many since I’ve been writing for so long. I am really enjoying writing the next book; it is definitely my favorite so far. And my favorite blog post is “Into the Fire.”

5. Where do you find inspiration? ~ In trees, birds, sunshine, coffee, good conversations, books, online articles, Facebook and Instagram posts, and so on.

6. What do you love the most about blogging? ~ I love being able to help others while being creative at the same time. I have so much to share, after decades of studying and practicing, that my binder with ideas is swelling! I look forward to helping you happy up your life through many blog posts to come!

7. What’s one thing that keeps you motivated? ~ I almost typed “coffee” but then I thought if I can only say “one” thing, then I’ll have to say my awesome sons. They are the bright spots in my life. They keep me going, keep me inspired, and keep me real. (They are 19 and almost 22.)

8. Dogs or cats? ~ At the heart and soul levels, I love all animals, and my compassion for them is so deep that I do not eat any animal products, and I choose to not have pets. Growing up on a small farm, we had many cats, and one time we had a dog briefly but he was kinda wild and ran away. We also had chickens, rabbits, goats, and sheep, and I loved them all. My favorite animals are elephants, bears, and cows. I also really adore all birds (especially crows), as well as bees and butterflies.

9. What’s your favorite holiday? ~ I love all the holidays so much, so this is a tough one, but I’m going to go with Christmas. I just really delight in getting out all the sparkly red and green decorations the day after Thanksgiving, and it’s usually late February before I can bear to pack them away again!

10. What’s one thing you can’t live without? ~ Chanting… Every day, for the past fifteen years, I’ve been singing along with chanting CDs, mostly by Krishna Das, and I love that practice so much. (Coffee is definitely a close second here!)

11. Who is your favorite writer? ~ Even though I do a lot of reading, I don’t have a favorite writer. Back in the day when I used to read fiction, I loved Isabel Allende, but for the past couple of decades I’ve been more into studying spiritual teachings, and I can’t say that I have a favorite writer. Although I do like Deepak Chopra…

Well I hope you have enjoyed this journey through my version of the Sunshine Blogger Award!

Thanks again, Andrea, for nominating me!

 

May All Beings Be Free of Suffering
May All Beings Be Happy

 

 

 

Double Coffee Days Ahead

Are you in need of some special sanctuary time? If yes, you will benefit from reading my upcoming book…

I have decided to continue blogging regularly while writing Reaching for Orange: Practices, Visualizations, & Blessings to Help You Happy Up Your Life, so it is going to be double coffee days ahead for me!

Do you drink coffee? Did you know it has many healing benefits? Packed with health-giving antioxidants, coffee also has a peculiar way of connecting us with positivity and with unity consciousness. Read more in my previous article, “Coffee is Good Medicine.”

My new book, Reaching for Orange, will begin with a letter from me to you. I am sharing that letter below to spark your interest and to ask for support. If the following letter resonates with you, please consider donating to my work, by simply clicking here: Donate. I will be so very grateful for the support.

 

Dear You,

My new book, Reaching for Orange, is for ~

~ people who work with traumatized populations such as teachers who work with traumatized children; social workers who work with trauma; advocates who work with abused women; therapists who work with wounded people; doctors; nurses; medical assistants; those who respond to emergencies, natural disasters, and crimes; and those who work with prisoners and veterans…

~ people who are agonizing over what is happening to this sacred planet Earth and to the animals and to the abused children, and so on…

~ people who are highly sensitive persons (HSPs) and are struggling to survive in the workplace that is not suited to their sensitivities, and people who are non-HSPs, who are stressed and burnt out in their jobs, and/or are experiencing disharmony with their co-workers…

~ people who are caring for the dying: as caregivers, family members, social workers, chaplains, nurses, aides, and doctors…

~ and anyone else who needs a special sanctuary where they can nourish themselves deeply… a place where they can connect with the Divine Source of healing energies.

This book, Reaching for Orange, is that sanctuary.

It is your special holy place… a place for you to learn, to reflect, and to go deep inside your own being. Letting go of the outside world for a while…

Bringing crayons, markers, colored pencils, jewel stickers… whatever you like to decorate with… Blank pages are included throughout this very special book… for your unique explorations… You are invited to write, draw, and have fun in this book. You could even glue photos or magazine images onto the blank pages…

This book is 100% for you… for your healing, for your replenishment, for your happiness.

After an explanation of Orange, this entire book is filled with practices, visualizations, and blessings to help you Happy Up your life.

May All Beings Be Free of Suffering.
May All Beings Be Happy.

With Much Love,
Teja

 

Please help to support this work by clicking here: Donate.
Thank you so very much!

Does Coffee Give You Bear Power?

I joke that Coffee is my spirit animal, but actually I think it might be Bear. Do you drink coffee? Did you see my blog article in January about the health benefits of coffee? (“Coffee is Good Medicine”)

And do you love bears? Recently I discovered a fun Facebook page called Bears Make Me Happy, so now I can enjoy seeing photos of bears in my feed, while drinking my hot black Organic, Fair Trade, dark roast coffee!

In their book, Medicine Cards: The Discovery of Power Through the Ways of Animals, authors Jamie Sams and David Carson write, “The strength of Bear medicine is the power of introspection.” They say that the special energy of Bear has to do with their hibernation in wintertime. Just like Bear, I feel as though I’ve been going deep inside my cave this winter. How about you?

Here’s a short little Bear visualization to bring comfort… imagining you are curled up in a cave with a Mama Bear and her cubs… you feel peaceful and completely at ease… and so do they… the Mama Bear pulls you close and cuddles you, just like one of her own cubs… you feel so much love… you melt in that love… and you send some of that Big Bear Love out to all beings…

May All Beings Feel Loved
May All Beings Be Happy!

 

Bear image by mlorenzphotography/Getty

 

 

Your Future Self: A Visualization Practice

Where would you like to be six months from now? On September 10th, 2019 who would you like to be?

Visualizing your future self is a powerful practice that can help you to achieve your goals. First, write down your visualization, and then read it out loud daily until you memorize it. Once you memorize it, then you can just think it in your mind, or continue reading it out loud if you prefer. Either way, include multi-sensory aspects, such as how you feel in your future self’s body, as well as what you are seeing, hearing, smelling, and tasting in the body of your future self. Continue this practice daily for 3-4 weeks, or until it begins to feel complete.

Here is an example of my future self visualization for six months from now. I wrote mine in third person, but you could write yours in first person if that feels more comfortable to you.

On September 10th, 2019, Sister Teja is a StarFire Superstar Dynamo! Sri Rama healed her nervous system and re-calibrated her body so that now she is able to handle doing a lot of work with ease and grace. She is stronger on every level, and now she efficiently runs all that energy that surges through her. She is harnessing the positive aspects of being an HSP (Highly Sensitive Person), through her work: offering spiritual care to the dying and their families; posting helpful blog articles; leading StarFire Healing Circles in which she shares do-able spiritual practices with others; AND happily promoting her new book, Reaching for Orange: Practices, Visualizations, and Blessings to Help You Happy Up Your Life. Through it all, she is enjoying the Happiness & Radiance of the Spiritual Life. Her body feels vibrant and healthy. She sees the Divine in everyone and everything. She enjoys the color orange, the scent of vetiver, and the taste of hot black coffee.

Sharing your future self visualization can give it a boost of energy. When others witness your vision, that gives it even more power. So I encourage you, if you feel comfortable, to share your future self vision in the comments below, down where it says “Leave a Reply.”

May All Beings Be Happy!

 

image Courtesy NASA Goddard

StarFire Teja’s Suggestions for a Gift Set

Practice Self-Love! This Valentine’s Day (or any day), why not treat yourself to this yummy self-nurturing care package ~

~ Books:
The Oracle of Rama: A Divination Deck and Companion Guide Booklet by David Frawley
The Tejaswini Ramayana: The Way of Rama in the Shakahara StarFire Universes by Teja Shankara (that’s me!)

~ CDs:
Bhakti Bazaar: Music for Yoga and Other Joys Volume 2 by Jai Uttal and Ben Leinbach
Trust in the Heart by Krishna Das

~ Incense:
Cedarwood by Morning Star
Nagchampa Agarbathi by Goloka

~ Coffee and Tea:
Kicking Horse Grizzly Claw Coffee (Organic, Fair Trade, Dark Roast)
Rooibos Chai (caffeine free) by Numi or Choice Teas

I hope you will enjoy this gift set! Perhaps you will be inspired to send it to a loved one also. Spread the joy!

And Happy Chinese New Year of the Pig!

May All Beings Be Happy!