Book Review:When Spirit Leaps ~ Navigating the Process of Spiritual Awakening by Bonnie L. Greenwell PhD
Many books and articles about the awakening journey make assumptions about their audience. Either they elevate their knowledge base and throw theories and terms around without proper explanation or they appeal to the lowest common denominator and dumb down the content. When Spirit Leaps is so appealing because the author treats the reader with care and respect. This book is both comprehensive in scope, without sacrificing the personal element. I think this is one of the reasons why I highly recommend When Spirit Leaps.
Dr. Greenwell, a transpersonal psychotherapist, non-dual spiritual teacher and former student of Adyashanti, draws from her extensive experience to create a book that will engage and support anyone who is looking for clarity about embodied consciousness. She has a great reputation as a longtime Kundalini expert and her emphasis on Kundalini activation makes this publication especially valuable. The book is divided into three sections: How We Awaken, Navigating the Challenges of Awakening, and The Continual Unfolding of Liberation. The reader can choose to read this book using intuition or approach it from cover to cover. I assure you there is something of interest for anyone eager to learn more about the awakening process.
I was especially fond of the How We Awaken material. Chapter 2 Energy Moves Us Along the Way, was so informative and rich in details about the “mechanics” of Kundalini. Many people are aware of the concept of Kundalini and have heard accounts of how people are transformed after a Kundalini activation. However, many are still left wondering “Have I experienced this energy myself? “or “What does this process look like? “I am one of those people and was hungry for some sound explanations. Learning about the various nadis (lines of energy) was new information for me and Greenwell’s explanations were very helpful. I also appreciated her take on the chakras through the tantric yoga tradition. Section 1 also includes insightful material on the various portals to awakening consciousness that is both practical and heartfelt. The content on the Dark Night of the Soul and moving into the void is also well executed.
Section 2 explores the challenges of living fully embodied while undergoing gradual or sudden waves of heightened awareness. The author does a great job helping one discern the differences between dysfunction (psychosis) and enhanced function (increased consciousness). This topic is controversial and difficult to get a handle on, but Greenwell covers it with respect and care. The exercises included are also a wonderful resource as well.
In the final section, the book addresses where to go from “here”. The losses inherent on the spiritual path are addressed, inviting the reader to acknowledge and accept that gains are a byproduct of letting go of what no longer serves a more evolved way of being. Chapter 9 covers the complexities of living in unity consciousness in a 3D world that appears dual in nature. The following quote resonates strongly for me: “In the stillness between extremes, we’ll discover who we are. Possibilities will arise from the heart and the deeper intuition of the gut, so a new birthing can happen. Our natural impulse towards life as an expression of love, wisdom, and creativity can emerge without barriers.” When Spirit Leaps takes the reader on an adventure with heart, wisdom, and integrity, allowing the space for integration, peace, and further exploration.
Quakerism is a faith built upon on the premise that everyone can have direct access to Spirit and that the Divine is always revealing itself ” in real-time.” Marcelle Martin is one of the first people I met when I began attending Quaker Meeting ( that is a huge story in itself ). She quickly became a trusted friend, role model, and mentor. She was instrumental in integrating me into the larger community and made it possible for me to take workshops at Pendle Hill , which led to many incredible experiences including my time spent with James.
Marcelle Martin’s book Our Life is Love: The Quaker Spiritual Journey takes the reader on an adventure back in time that chronicles the bravery and challenges faced by seventeenth century Quakers. The adventure continues into the present day where contemporary Friends share personal accounts of their spiritual awakening. The writing is raw, honest, and insightful, allowing the reader to feel the material and discover the universality of living a life with heart. The author proposes a 10 step process of awakening that describes the internal transformation one undergoes as they seek to know the Divine within. The majority of the book is organized into three main sections: Awakening, Convincement, and Faithfulness. Each section unfolds as a comparison between the historical and present day Friends as they sacrifice a conventional, material life for a soulful one comprised of simplicity, authenticity, and service to Spirit. The author does an excellent job bringing early Quaker experiences to life. She has an ability to take each individual’s struggles and joys and make them accessible and relatable. This ability gives the reader a rare glimpse into a time that was heavily entrenched with slavery, a strict societal hierarchy , and no separation of Church and State.
The chapters on The Refiner’s Fire and Leadings are incredibly rich with descriptions of how individuals must make life – defining choices based on discernment and reliance on the Light. I certainly have experienced many situations on my path that resulted in the stripping away of what I no longer needed ( while my ego screamed with resistance) along with many tests of my ability to choose my soul’s desires over my ” personality’s” needs. Martin provides a framework for the seeker so that a safe container can be established when the going gets rough. As many already know, the emotional element of the mystical path is not easily navigated and can often divert one from progressing if the no container is available.
This is a fascinating read for anyone, regardless of religious affiliations. The Quaker faith is a mystical path and Martin’s model of awakening can be followed by any seeker on the path to self-realization. The reflection questions at the end of each chapter serve a guide to delve deeper into the material. The author shares her own mystical journey by incorporating the 1o stages into her story. The spiritual path is truly a difficult one, inundated with paradox, loss, and allegiance to the Truth. Our Life is Love illustrates that this challenging path was chosen by those who were called to live a life with heartfelt devotion; where worship translated to service with the intention of creating a more enlightened world.
BIO: Since 1996,Marcelle Martin has been traveling to Quaker meetings and retreat centers across the country to help individuals and communities increase awareness of the presence and activity of God within and among us. A teacher, writer, and workshop leader, she served for four years as the resident Quaker Studies teacher at Pendle Hill. She is the author of the book Our Life is Love: The Quaker Spiritual Journey, and the Pendle Hill pamphlets, “Invitation to a Deeper Communion” and “Holding One Another in the Light.” Her blog, A Whole Heart, is at http://awholeheart.com.
Our Life is Love: The Quaker Spiritual Journeycan be ordered from Inner Light Booksin both paperback and eBook formats.
As we continue to be tested and challenged to rise up in the wake of chaos and “alternative truth”, this post flashed in my mind. Please check out my book review and consider how current events may be cajoling the collective to blossom into our totality of consciousness. Mercury retrograde cycles are great for anything “throwback”. Hope you agree!
Happy Saturday everyone! It has been almost one week since I had my Sound Bath healing and the energies are still moving in unpredictable ways. Thanks for those who have offered some assistance on this kundalini trip. I continue to seek inner guidance about what is happening with me currently. Meeting with my spiritual director was helpful. She also assists me with my dreamwork and boy has it been jumping lately. I found a book yesterday that contained material by David Lukoff that was very useful. David Lukoff is a transpersonal psychologist and leading expert on Spiritual Emergencies and knows what he is talking about His writing is among the best I have found thus far on the subject. It is balanced, focused, and easy to understand. Lights are still flickering and my heart is still racing, but not as often. I also ” by chance ” ran into Tracie the…
I have been hinting for some time that the state of our planet is a symptom of our collective shadow. This book review of Dispelling Wetiko by Paul Levy truly articulates my ideas in a grounded, cohesive format. Thank you Jessica for this fascinating post.
This week Zoe is reading Dispelling Wetiko by Paul Levy, which explores the collective psychosis now gripping our culture and challenges us to look inside ourselves for answers. The name ‘wetiko’ comes from Native American cultures and refers to a spirit or wicked person who terrorises others through its evil acts. Wetiko is an archetype that arises from the collective unconscious, a psychic virus that represents the nightmare we’re all dreaming up together.
I am very pleased to present my interview with Barbara Franken, blogger and new author of Your Magnificent Self, A Journey to Freedom. This interview is part of litebeing chronicle’s Interview Series, an occasional feature where I do of one of my favorite things, ask questions. If you would like to be included, please contact me and we will get the ball rolling. Bask in the limelight and get your latest project or talent noticed.
Barbara has been spreading the word of self-love and awakening for a while now. Her brand new book delivers her message beautifully, with colorful characters intertwined in a fascinating tale of discovery and enchantment. It takes the reader on a powerful journey of the heart, supported by exquisite soul art and helpful resources and meditations. Her unique story will evoke the yearnings of the inner child and unleash hope for the future of our planet and the continuing expansion of consciousness.
Enjoy our interview:
Thank you Barbara for giving me the chance to learn more about your fabulous new book, My Magnificent Self : A Journey To Freedom. I know my readers will be delighted to learn about your quest.
Can you start off by giving us a brief summary of the plot?
I left home at the age of 17 with the burning questions… Who AM I and What is life about. I left my family home in England to travel Europe and explore answers. I eventually settled down in Holland where synchronicity brought me into contact with people who helped point me within and I began to perceive a whole new world, a Magnificent Consciousness that IAM and all life is a part of and discovered magical moments and my own answers.
What does freedom mean for you?
Freedom from being trapped in the Human game.
Why is it so precious?
I have always been a rebel and needed to be able to be and do things my way, outside the limitations and rules of society. It would have been so much easier if we were taught differently, but then again this might have affected the driving force behind my own exploration. Nevertheless, I remain passionate about sharing and inspiring our children about the Magnificent Consciousness each person is a part of and their place in it. Money raised from my books and Master Creator Class will go into my Spanish Non-Profit Association, The Magnificent Consciousness and will fund my creative art project that I take into local schools to help the children explore, question and discover their place in life.
What motivated you to write this book at this point in time?
Moving to my new home in Benalmadena early 2014 seemed to be the end of one amazing journey and the beginning of something completely new. I just knew it was time to write about it all; the past, present and future, and to share and inspire others to resonate with their own magnificence and Master Creator self.
Can you tell us how the opening futuristic vision came into being?
For a long time I have envisioned Humanity living on the Earth plane in peace and harmony and as my consciousness expanded, I began to understand how easily it is achieved. There is a fine line between what is real and fantasy and what I choose and allow becomes my reality.
Have any of these potential timelines materialized for you?
Yes, time is coming together now and allows us to experience whatever we choose in each moment.
The illustrations are stunning and really compliment the text. How did the vibrant color palette emerge for your Soul Art?
I have always loved vibrant rich colours and continue to play a big part of my life. My Elemental friends portray this as part of their vibrant potential and since publishing my book I can now allow myself to stand out and shine my colours.
Were the elementals literal, metaphorical or some combination of both?
All physical life is originally created from an idea, imagination or fantasy, having beginnings in the non-physical world. My elementals and my New Earth exist for the most part in the non-physical world but when I choose I sense them here too.
Did you engage with them using your third eye or some other way?
My 6th multi-sensual knowing allows me to sense at different times all the senses… to feel, to see, to hear, to taste, to smell. It is important for me to allow my whole body consciousness, body, mind and spirit to work together and sense all life.
I was inspired by your bravery to leave home for a foreign country at such a young age. What led you to take that leap of faith?
I believe when we are young we are brave, we don’t fear life and nothing would have stopped my incredible urge to move, to explore and discover myself and life. My real leap of faith came much later as an adult, leaving behind my comforts and fear of the unknown… which I write about with Axiel and Max.
From what I’ve gleaned about your lifestyle from your book, it appears that you have plenty of freedom, adventure, and creative pursuits. Often there is more happening behind the scenes. What was missing that prompted you to dig deeper?
In the beginning I didn’t feel anything was missing, only answers to my questions because I felt there was more… What I eventually discovered was my lack of self love and how self love is so important to unlock the door to the magnificent consciousness where everything… All That Is, is found.
One of the major themes is love of self and moving from one’s head to one’s heart. What would you say to those who may not understand why making this shift can be so life- altering?
Self Love is what opens up the potential of the magnificent and interconnected world of consciousness that can only be perceived from a quiet and peaceful state of being.
You incorporate scientific principles into your work, which adds another layer to the mystical content. What made you decide to include Bruce Lipton’s material?
I have always been fascinated with science, the universe, quantum physics and have read many books but I resonated with Bruce as he explained in a simple manner his findings of cell research when cloning Dolly. His story confirmed to me what I knew and literally blew my mind away.
One of my favorite chapters is the one about Ormus. I was fascinated by the synchronicity that led you to discovering his place in nature. Can you share how this knowledge has added to your awareness of the magic of the natural world?
Similar to Bruce, I knew a lot about the new energy consciousness from various sources, so when Ormus came along and confirmed it all, my consciousness leaped beyond everything I had known and allowed me to tap into deeper truths of the magic of the unknown, the natural world and The Magnificent Consciousness we are all part of. At this point of my journey, there was no going back and everything truly began to make sense. A wonderful moment in my life.
It was a pleasure discovering more about you and your excellent adventure in this incredibly ethereal yet practical book.
What is the major takeaway lesson from your experiences documented here?
That life is simply about making choices, being clear of your ‘heart and soul’ desire and allowing it all to unfold as the unique expression of you.
What parting words do you have for those who may be skeptical about a new Earth in their lifetime?
Life is not about what others think and say, it’s about how we each feel and how we want to live our life in each moment. As a child we can all remember moments of play, fantasy and imagination that we can reconnect with and allow ourselves to feel the magic and bring it back into our life. It is time for many more Humans to remember we are the true creators of life.
Thank you Barbara for spending some time here with us at litebeing chronicles. I wish you magnificent success with Your Magnificent Self : A Journey to Freedom.
To learn more about Barbara or to purchase her book, visit her site here.
Happy Saturday everyone! It has been almost one week since I had my Sound Bath healing and the energies are still moving in unpredictable ways. Thanks for those who have offered some assistance on this kundalini trip. I continue to seek inner guidance about what is happening with me currently. Meeting with my spiritual director was helpful. She also assists me with my dreamwork and boy has it been jumping lately. I found a book yesterday that contained material by David Lukoff that was very useful. David Lukoff is a transpersonal psychologist and leading expert on Spiritual Emergencies and knows what he is talking about His writing is among the best I have found thus far on the subject. It is balanced, focused, and easy to understand. Lights are still flickering and my heart is still racing, but not as often. I also ” by chance ” ran into Tracie the nature channel while shopping yesterday. Have not seen her in about 2 years. I initially met her when I began to attend the Sound Baths several years ago. Seeing her yesterday ~ Coincidence? I don’t think so!!
I do not want to alarm any of my readers. While this is a challenging time, I am certain that this is just the latest of a series of openings I have experienced during the course of my life. What seems different now is that I was able to link it to a specific event and have different language for it, and that there seems to be a very fiery component at play ( super combustible grand fire trine).
Today is the first day of Mercury Retrograde. It is also World Animal Day and Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of Atonement. I prefer to write it ACIM style ~ at-one- ment. I have written before on the Course in Miracles teachings on the illusion of separation and how it has decimated our sense of unity as a people and as the source of All There Is. This particular time of year can be used ( especially in 2014 with Mercury stationing retrograde in Scorpio) to heal the divisions within us by embracing the shadows and healing the splits and factions within. There are some interesting articles written about this today on the blogosphere, very timely indeed.
MINI BOOK REVIEW:
Speaking of timeliness .. It was nearly nine years ago when I first was introduced to The Little Soul and the Sun by Neale Donald Walsch. After gazing at it on Amazon for a long time ( could not find it offline) , I finally ordered it. The package arrived a few days ago and we had a joyous reunion!To read it again after all this time is so empowering and certain passages triggered a profound crying spell. These were tears of recognition of the power of the Source and my longing for that complete connection. Shortly after I had my awakening during the Summer of 2005 I returned to a very chaotic work situation. Many people had moved on and the entire leadership team of my department was in flux. One of my supervisors ( one of the few who remained) was led to bring me a book to borrow. He had never done so before. He came to my cubicle and said that he wanted me to read this book because it will help me deal with a very difficult dilemma. He handed me this children’s book. I am thinking ” Why is he giving me a children’s book?” When I saw that the author was Neale Donald Walsch, creator of the Conversation with God series, I was happy to dig in.
This beautifully illustrated tale is about the purpose of the human experience and the contracts we make with one another in order to help us fulfill our unique expression of the Divine. It tells the tale of one soul who wanted to live the wonder of his being through physical expression on Earth and chose to experience the nature of forgiveness. This short story succinctly explains the role of darkness in the Universe and why this physical world is ” all pretend.” It is indeed a children’s book, but I enjoyed it as much or more that many of the heady metaphysical material that I pore through on a regular basis. The main theme is to forgive one another for any perceived wrongdoing and to recognize that we are all loving beings of light.
I understood the reason my supervisor lent me this book, yet I was unable to forgive this coworker who was to play a powerful role in my work group. I did not have the support necessary to deal with her daily, and look beyond her current persona that was quite untrustworthy and manipulative. While I understood that a great life lesson was before me, I simply was unprepared to take this challenge on. Not at this time.
I ultimately used this situation to once and for all make a clean break from a system that I had outgrown. This coworker actually did me a huge favor by being a catalyst that set these events in motion. By the way, I lent my supervisor Dan Millman’s The Way of the Peaceful Warrior in exchange for his kind gesture. It was the least I could do!
I highly recommend this book to anyone who wants a major heart opening. This may seem paradoxical to many, but often the simpler texts teach me more about life than the scholarly ones. Perhaps this is why I am so drawn to poets like Rumi. He packed millenia of lifetimes condensed into mere sentences. Sometimes less is more. Check out Sindy’s post here to read the entire story!
And on that note I wish you peace amidst the wilds of this October 2014. May we all become wiser, stronger, more conscious and kinder to ourselves and everyone who crosses our path.
I am pleased to present my review * of Julianne Victoria’s Butterfly Journal. It has been wonderful to work with this lovely lavender book that captures the essence of Julianne’s intuitive spirit.
Butterfly Journal by Julianne Victoria ~
Butterflies tell us the story of being in flux, lingering in darkness, feeling isolated, embracing the state of limbo and then finally and miraculously emerging brilliantly reborn and free. Meta – morphosis means beyond form. This interactive journal takes the reader through a monthly process of prompts that support the inner work required for lasting personal transformation. Each month builds upon another as you reflect, write and/or draw and then reflect some more, taking with you the wisdom gleaned from the previous month. For example, the first month focuses on self – reflection and taking a self- inventory, month two is devoted to an examination of truth, and month three is an invitation to live in faith and love of self. You can start the journal whenever you like. I started mine immediately after the Autumn Equinox .
The journal is big enough to really dig in and write and doodle and explore to your heart’s content. Each page is decorated with a stunning butterfly image. This beautifully illustrated book is designed to gently encourage the reader to see their potential while gazing at the butterfly on every page. I was certainly inspired to pour my heart into each page knowing that I am on the path to transformation.
Why you should buy this journal: It is thoughtfully organized, beautifully designed, and embodies Julianne’s unique recipe for self-realization. The monthly prompts are very effective and the format is quite cohesive. I am really enjoying this process, knowing that Julianne’s energy is encouraging my self-exploration. Come join me and you will see how this delightful book can jump-start the progress of stepping into your true nature.
Please visit juliannevictoria.com to learn more about the author and her amazing blog. Her blog also showcases her professional services , creative projects and publications, and ordering instructions.
UPDATE – I found this charming children’s song about metamorphosis that I preferred over my initial choice ( Mariah Carey video). Your feedback is always welcome; let me know if you enjoyed listening to this song .
* I was given a copy of the book in exchange for this review.
I am very pleased to present my review * of When Stars Die by the exceptionally talented Amber Skye Forbes of amberskyeforbes . I am very inspired by this modern renaissance woman who divides her time as ballerina, college student, prolific author, and savvy social media navigator! Her writing reflects her ideals: increasing awareness of teen and young adult challenges with depression and other mood disorders, authenticity, passion, tenacity and willingness to color outside the lines of predictability.
When Stars Die by Amber Skye Forbes –
Amelia leaves home with her younger brother Nathaniel to a convent to become a nun. She makes this choice to make up for her parent’s sins and to protect her brother and his identity – he is a witch! When it appears that Amelia kills her best friend Colette in a fire, she learns the truth that she is also a witch. Amelia is unable to tolerate the trials on the path to becoming a nun, and sees figures that are invisible to others. These figures are after her. Oliver appears on the scene and agrees to help her. They eventually become lovers after Amelia is asked to leave the convent. Eventually Oliver’s true identity is revealed and Amelia does what she must to protect her brother and save the witches from a dire fate.
I am new to this genre, but I was very invested in the story and believe it will be quite popular. My lack of familiarity with this genre may have impacted my ability to follow certain plot points.
The characters are intriguing. Amelia is a loyal sister, a strong, determined young woman, and a reluctant witch. Oliver is hopelessly smitten with Amelia, but cannot give into his love because of past sins and obligations. But what I found problematic about some of the characters is that I didn’t think Nathaniel was well-developed, and that I was also confused about Oliver’s motives. However, I liked the bond between Amelia and Colette. I also liked the loyalty Amelia displayed towards Nathaniel.
I loved the author’s incredible attention to detail. Her ability to create this fictional world drew me in and kept me interested. I became invested in the romance between Amelia and Oliver. I was also curious about why she left home and her background. I was also fascinated by the background of these invisible figures only Amelia can see.
As for the pacing, the first few chapters were a bit slow-moving. I also wanted to know more about Amelia’s parents and the relationship between Amelia and them. I was also unclear about the time frame. Was it an actual period in history or some type of composite? References to trains, cigarettes, apartments, and cabs made me wonder more about the setting for the story.
Overall, anyone who enjoys YA paranormal romance, or any stories of the paranormal genre, will enjoy this book. I give this book 5 stars since most readers are likely to enjoy it.
To learn about Amber’s creative process and interest in the paranormal , plus pre-order information :