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The Power of Gratitude

Gratitude is a renewable energy. It is a magnetic, attractive and transmutative force that becomes self-perpetuating, engendering even more things for which to be grateful. In Spanish the word for “thank you,” gracias, also means grace. We can say that gratitude is a state of being, a state of grace. Living in gratitude—a gratitude attitude—transmutes challenges and situations we wish had turned out a different way. These are learning opportunities, the grain of sand that…

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The Power of Commitment

Breathwork Training

One of the quotes which participants of Soulful Purpose retreats find most helpful is from William Hutchinson Murray’s The Scottish Himalayan Expedition: “Until one is committed, there is hesitancy, the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness. Concerning all acts of initiative (and creation), there is one elementary truth the ignorance of which kills countless ideas and splendid plans: that the moment one definitely commits oneself, then providence moves too. A whole stream of events issues…

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Moving Through Fear

Breathwork Training

Fear, in one of its many facets is what has kept us in stuck in stifling jobs, soul-devouring mediocrity, suffocating relationships—in “lives of quiet desperation,” as Thoreau wrote. The issue of fear and how to transcend it almost always comes up with clients and during retreats. Contrary to what many believe, fearlessness does not mean the absence of fear; it means that we no longer give fear the power to hold us back. How do…

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The Power of Vulnerability

Breathwork Training

If we need to prove we are powerful it is safe to assume that we are compensating for feeling powerless in some way. There is power in conscious vulnerability. We are so confident in our power that there is nothing to defend: we are not worried about others’ opinions or about being attacked. There is a Buddhist story about a monk who was falsely accused of impregnating a young woman who faced being ostracized by…

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The Power of Self-Expression

Breathwork Training

The journey of self-discovery is the most important journey we can take. It is an inner journey, and a heroic one. The dragons to be slain are our own fears and insecurities and outgrown belief systems, behavior patterns and life situations. Challenges to be overcome include family, social and cultural conditioning. The journey is an on-going one and entails identifying our own inner blocks–misunderstandings we bought into when we were very young: that we were…

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Just Keep Breathing

Breathwork Training

My body is still recovering from the SMART Ride, a 165-mile fund raising bike ride from Miami to Key West. With the support of an extensive and dedicated volunteer crew, more than 450 riders raised over a million dollars last weekend for South Florida HIV/AIDS treatment and prevention organizations. I’m deeply grateful to those of you who supported the effort by sponsoring me. Thank you! I learned a few things from the effort. For one…

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Never, Ever Give Up!

Breathwork Training

As a former competitive swimmer, I’ve followed the career of Diana Nyad since her Olympic days. With roots both in Cuba and South Florida, I’ve watched her multiple gut-wrenching and until now heart-breaking attempts at crossing the Florida Straits. That she finally accomplished such an extraordinary feat at age 64 is inspiring. “Never, Ever Give Up!” were the words out of her month when she finally stumbled out on Smather’s Beach in Key West after…

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The Soul of Travel

Breathwork Training

I love to travel. Place me on a plane toward just about any destination and I am a happy man. Even though I am a frequent traveler, each time I look out of an airplane window I am still awed and humbled by the raw, dramatic, and sometimes painfully fragile beauty of our planet. I am deeply moved both by our home’s expansiveness and by its smallness, when contrasted to the mind-boggling, unimaginable scope of…

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Breaking Free

Breathwork Training

Last week was fraught with mixed emotions for many of us who dream of freedom and equality for all. The Supreme Court’s rulings on the Voting Rights Act and affirmative action were a bit of a buzz kill for the high that followed when DOMA and Prop 8 were repealed. A quote from Dr. King helped me put things in perspective and take the long view: “The arc of the moral universe is long, but…

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Tending Love’s Fire

Breathwork Training

Have you ever witnessed the creation of fire? It is such a profound privilege, one that strikes a cord deep in our ancestral memory. Fire, to our modern minds, is as simple as striking a match, flicking a lighter or — going back to elementary school science experiments — using the sun and a magnifying glass. The actual creation of fire, however, is a complex endeavor that requires much effort, preparation and focus. Similarly, though…

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