This is what language is…

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Each morning, I read poems — sometimes, a single drop of a poem that widens and ripples through my life all day; sometimes, a dancing river of poems that sweeps me towards a glimmering horizon.

Poems restore my soul, return me to my beating heart, to my breath and body. They deliver me home to the lineage of bards and poets who sang around hearth-fires and campfires, who loved the everyday world and told of its mysteries in ancestral caves, and whispered their songs down the mouths of sacred wells.

Here’s an excerpt from Eavan Boland’s poem, A Habitable Grief, that rings like a pebble flung into a great, copper vat, this morning:

“This is what language is:
a habitable grief. A turn of speech
for the everyday and ordinary abrasion
of losses such as this

which hurts
just enough to be a scar.

And heals just enough to be a nation.”

This is soul food. Drink it in. Let it settle into your cells, into your hungry bones. Feel the golden nourishment of truth, eloquently spoken.


Cheek to cheek: Partnering with your Business Deva

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The single most important element in the world of your business is you. Your energy, vitality, and creativity, your vision and heart, give birth to your business. Your love supports the life of your business.

You partner with the Deva of your business to unfold the miracle of its pattern in the world. You, and the relationship between you and your Business Deva, are the central elements in this creation that is your business.

Your life is your kingdom to shape — to cultivate, to nourish, to grow. The more skillfully you care for yourself, the more fully you access your soul and all of its qualities, including creativity, grounding, abundance, wisdom, strength, clarity and purpose. The more you embody these qualities in yourself and in your business, the more successful your business will be.

Your soul encompasses the whole ecology of your being. It holds your uniqueness — that which makes you who you are.

This includes your personality, your history, your family, your lineage, your likes, your dislikes, your strengths, your challenges, your physical body, everything that makes you, you. Everything in your personal ecology is the particularity of your being.

This is the realm of what we think of as the real world, the three-dimensional world. It is bound by laws of nature, of time, space and gravity. It is a world of differentiation and opposites — of light and dark; day and night; male and female; positive and negative. That aspect of your soul that is incarnate encounters all of the polarities and contradictory realities of this world in which we live.

But your soul also includes, in its ecology, the dimensions of subtle energy and of unity. In this aspect of your soul’s ecology, you are one with Source and with all of Creation. You are one with all that is, was, or ever will be.

Time and space function very differently in this portion of the soul’s ecology. There is no gravity or resistance—the laws of nature in our 3-D world don’t apply to the subtle energy worlds. This means that you can transform patterns very quickly here.

This is why energy technologies work so brilliantly. It is also the reason why, when you know how to work with the subtle energy realms, you can create things very quickly, and in seemingly magical ways.

To bring those creations into manifestation you have to engage the powers of your incarnation — your particularity, which lives in the 3-dimensional world. You have to create structures and forms that hold the essence of what you want to bring into the world.

When the pattern and form of your business — its shape and structure — flow organically from its essence, the world of your business is elegant and whole. This makes your business irresistible to those who truly want what you have to offer. In order to shape it in this way, you have to know how to bring your business into the world of form, skillfully and effectively.

There’s a difference between creating things on an energetic level and creating things on a physical level. There is great creative power in knowing how to navigate the whole ecology of your being so that you can use the skills and capacities of every aspect of your soul, including its subtle and physical energy realities.

On the 3-D end of the spectrum there are a limited number of things you can create. You have a limited amount of time, you have a limited amount of energy — that’s the nature of physical reality.

It’s important to make the very most of your capacity by knowing your true desires, and anchoring them in a clear and concrete intention. Because once you set something in motion in the subtle-energy dimensions, you begin gathering around you a vast array of allies and powers to help you bring your creation into form.

If you set things in motion randomly you will waste an enormous amount of energy and you will end up either creating things you don’t want, or not having the resources you need to carry your creation to completion.

Being clear about your intention helps you align your desires with your soul’s purposes. Partnering with your Business Deva helps you fulfill your intention with the help of all the powers of wholeness.

Take some time each day, to connect with your Business Deva. Deepen your relationship with it. Together, you can develop a unified vision for your business. Your Business Deva can help you with everything from envisioning the world of your business to shaping an effective business model, to creating a winning campaign for your signature offering. It can help you with both planning and implementation.

Like any relationship, your relationship with your Business Deva will deepen and flourish if you nourish it with your love, appreciation, willingness to listen and to communicate. Devas do not impose themselves, so ask for help when you need it. Then follow through and act on the guidance it offers you.

Your relationship with your Business Deva is a partnership. You are no less sacred or powerful than it is. You each have your own spheres of power and influence. So use your discernment. Feel free to say No to anything it proposes that doesn’t feel right to you, or that isn’t in right timing for you. You are sovereign in your own life.

Once you’ve called on it to collaborate with you, pay attention to the people, places, situations and experiences that show up in your life. These will be responses from your Business Deva to the help and partnership you have invoked.


Dream Team : Hiring for your Soul Business

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This past month I’ve felt spring burgeoning in the world of my business, even as winter storms blanketed our part of the world in ice and snow. My business is growing, and I have been in the process of hiring essential new members of my team.

A great working relationship doesn’t just happen. It requires work on both inner and outer levels. Like a good marriage, it is based in a clear vision of what is truly important to you — those qualities, values, skills and ways of being in the world that are essential to you and your business.

So, if you’re getting ready to hire, start by making a list of all the qualities and characteristics that are essential to you, in a co-worker and collaborator in the world of your business. You’re not seeking perfection, here, but rather those qualities, skills and attributes that are both necessary and sufficient to grow the world of your business in harmony with your vision and values.

Think right fit for the job, rather than Mother Teresa!

Once you’re clear about the essential qualities this person must have, make an organized, itemized list of everything their job encompasses. Structure this into relevant categories: project management, team management, website design, writing, and so on.

Add to this a list of all the major systems, software and processes you use in your business, that this person will need to know in order to function effectively in the world of your business. Obviously, if you’re hiring an operations manager they will need a different level of skill with your systems than if you’re hiring a copywriter, so keep this list focused on the requirements of the job.

Based on the above, generate a list of skills and experience that are essential — and a sub-list of skills that would be nice to have — in candidates for this position.

Now that you are clear about the qualities and characteristics, as well as the skills, knowledge and experience this person must have, create an ad for your ideal person. Speak directly and compellingly to them. Tell them about your company and your team: Who you are; what you value; and whom you would love to hire. Let them know how to apply, and if it is relevant, provide an online form with a skills list that they can check off and submit, along with their application.

Give them enough concrete information so that they can discern whether this job might be a good fit for them, and vice versa.

Now, call on your allies – your Business Deva, other members of your team, your friends and colleagues, to help you connect with the right person. Share the link to your job ad with your tribe – online, and in person. Post it on your Facebook and LinkedIn pages, on your business Twitter feed, on your blog, and on any forums to which you belong.

Have a process in place for handling applications. As they come in, divide them up into categories – Definitely not. Maybe. Yes, I want to talk with this person.

Stay open to serendipity. You might connect with the right person because someone you know knows someone they know, and they help you make the connection. Or they’ve been on your team for a while, but are now ready to take on more creative responsibility.

Do your homework. Meet with people on your short-list, be receptive to the quality of their presence, and be guided by your intuition about whether, where, and how, they belong in the world of your business. Look for chemistry, ease, flow — and trust your gut.

When you talk with them, ask questions and listen for how they respond. Give them the opportunity to ask you questions as well. Share your own heart and hear theirs in return. An interview is a place to connect and explore, to discover if there is enough common ground for a fruitful relationship to unfold.

Ask for and check references — talk to people they’ve worked with. Here are some things to consider, as you talk with referees. Has your candidate done similar work for them, or are you comparing apples and oranges? Are the referee’s standards for his or her business comparable to yours? Are there things the referee might hesitate to ask your candidate to do, because they aren’t sure of their ability to do them? What do they love/find challenging about the candidate? What can they tell you about the candidate’s working style, their learning style? If this person is no longer working for their organization, why and how did the relationship end?

Use your discernment to sift through all of this information, while paying close attention to your intuition. Inner and outer work go hand in hand, in this process.

Attune to the soul essence of your short-listed candidate, as well as to their personhood — everything that makes them who they are, unique and irreplaceable. Consider the alignment between them and the soul of your business.

Throughout the process, ask yourself a few fundamental questions: If I hire this person, how will I feel? Check in with your body, to get a felt sense of your response to this question. Ask yourself: Will this person add to the sum of harmony, wholeness, creative power, and coherency in my business — or not? And, can your business offer this person what they need to truly flourish? Will they be happy in this job? How will you help them grow into the job, but also how will you support them in becoming more fully themselves?

There is an element of serendipity and magic in connecting with the right people for your co-workers — those whose vision and values, skill, knowledge and experience are in harmony with the world of your business.

Business — like any creation — is an ecology of relationships fostered through love and devotion, clear communication, integrity, willingness, reciprocity and partnership, generosity of spirit, and a host of other soul qualities.

Different people in your business’s ecology may embody these qualities to greater or lesser degree. We are all individuals, and we bring our souls as well as our personalities to work with us.

If too many essential qualities are missing, if the person you’re considering isn’t sufficiently mature or skilled, doesn’t have the skills and knowledge you need, or if there’s a large energetic discrepancy between you, it will cause friction and difficulty in your business.

On the other hand, if the person has the practical skills, genius, and experience your business needs, there’s sufficient resonance and alignment between you, and you have clear agreements and strong systems to support you, your business and everyone in it will flourish.

To summarize, here are some essential elements to consider, in crafting a soul-centered business relationship:

Is there harmony and resonance — a good energetic fit — between you and the person you’re considering as a potential ally and co-worker.

Do you have the means, capacity, willingness and structures in place to support each of you, so the relationship serves both of you and your business in becoming more whole, integrated, creative and joyful?

Is there clear and honest communication between you? What are your expectations, needs and responsibilities towards each other, towards your business? What is your reporting and accountability structure? How do you negotiate differences? What process do you have in place for handling challenges?

Once you’ve hired someone, offer them welcome, appreciation and hospitality. You are making a commitment to their well-being, and you contribute to the quality of the relationship by your own attitude toward them.

Give them time and support to find their place in the world of your business. Hold qualities of flexibility, appreciation and patience, as you build trust and negotiate the differences between you. Be clear about expectations and responsibilities, and demonstrate that you hold everyone on your team — including yourself — to the same standards of impeccability and excellence.

The best business relationships are those in which each person feels safe, cherished, and encouraged to grow according to the inner pattern of their being; where boundaries and agreements are clearly delineated and understood; and there is a foundation of love, flexibility, trust, humor, good will and clear communication.

A soul business hires by committing to the well-being and fulfillment of everyone involved. Wholeness embraces everyone and everything in your business’s ecology and provides a container for everyone’s perfect unfolding.


Hidden treasure: When what you long for seems out of reach

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The light of our souls veils from us that which we are not yet ready to receive or to participate in.

If you’ve ever wondered why that thing you so want remains just out of reach, or why a particular project doesn’t yield the results you had hoped for — even though you’ve done everything you know of, to make it happen — it may be because your soul is waiting patiently for you to grow into the person you must become, in order to have the thing you most desire.

The interesting thing is that during that journey of growing yourself, you encounter a wider horizon of Desire. So that the thing you thought you wanted reveals itself to be an aspect of the Sacred that is so much vaster and more profound than anything you could have imagined.

That product you thought would help your tribe write more efficiently, or would help them create winning graphics for their next ebook, turns out to be an invitation to express the power and generativity of the Source within. That goal of speaking at a glittering gala to a rapt audience finds its true expression in your soul’s desire to illumine and awaken the pathways of grace.

This process unfolds in Divine Timing. What we think of as stuckness, failure, or procrastination is often an evolutionary process through which you and your desire both grow into your soul’s pattern, until you embody the power and presence necessary to co-create what’s next.


What sustains you?

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The Deva of Sustenance offers us its companionship this week.

Who or what sustains you?
Feel the miraculous ways — big and small — in which you are held, nourished, and provided for.

Feel the earth beneath your feet.
Feel the presence of the Deva of the Earth, which holds you, provides for you, and sustains you throughout your life.

Feel the air entering your nostrils, filling your lungs, sustaining your radiant life with every breath.

Feel the presence of your soul, in your body, in your energy field.
Feel the great, sparkling stream of Sustenance in which your soul dances.

Sustenance is a quality of soul — your soul, the World Soul.
Feel Sustenance flowing into you, filling and nourishing the cells of your body.
Feel it nourishing, supporting and strengthening your physical, emotional, mental and spiritual energy bodies.

Feel Sustenance flowing through you, flowing out to hold, nourish and support the life of all that you love.
Feel the great river of Sustenance, and the current that is you, within it.

Feel the love and partnership between you and the Deva of Sustenance.

What do you know about the relationship between what sustains you, and what you sustain?


What are you settling for?

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I’m astonished at, and saddened by, how little we are willing to settle for. We are fractals of the Sacred. Yet we settle for a living instead of a life. Fitting in, as a substitute for belonging. Approval, fame, stardom — each of these is but a pale reflection of our radiance, our deep longing to offer our soul’s creative presence to our world, and to be received with joyous celebration.

If you were to lose everything that you’ve settled for — all the roles, identities, possessions, relationships, and functions that define you — you would still be unmistakably, irreplaceably you. The Sacred incarnate.

Can you really be satisfied with less?


Untether yourself from false identities

Untether yourself from false identities


The Gifts of Difference

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We are each at different places in our life’s journey, yet when we choose to share our stories and travel together, the companionship we offer each other is invaluable.

We learn so much from each other, precisely because we bring our unique personhood and widely disparate experiences to the task of forging new pathways. The richest learning takes place at the boundary between us, where our differences call us to expand, so we can embrace wider horizons, and deepen into greater understanding.

The gifts of journeying together in a conscious way are evolutionary — new growth, richer relationships, the birth of true stories.


Dance Me: Responsibility Troll, Meet the Deva of Responsibility

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Responsibility.

Ta-duh.

The word lands with a heavy thump of burden and obligation. It stands hunched-over and stiff-necked with shoulds and expectations. A painfully bristling virtue that leaves us feeling bad about ourselves because its standards are so high, we’re afraid we’ll never be able to live up to them.

A grim Troll of a word with a Calvinist edge to it, its arrival strikes a sting of reproach — our failure to meet its exacting standards seems inevitable, built into its structure.

So what is responsibility, really? Who or what are we responsible for? Do we get to choose? Or do our responsibilities arrive pre-ordained — the mighty Troll who casts a long shadow over family, work, relationships, business, life…

Part of the confusion we feel arises because responsibility is both a body energy, and a spiritual quality — and the two are very different from each other.

As human animals — particularly if we’re female human animals — our bodies are genetically programmed to be responsible. This is Nature’s way of ensuring the propagation of the species, of making sure we’ll take care of our children through the long years it takes for them to grow to maturity and be able to survive in the wilds of the world.

It’s this Responsibility Troll that brings my whole being into a state of instant alert when I hear a child’s panicked voice calling: “Mommy!” at my local grocery store. Even though my sons are grown men, happily living their own lives, that cry of “Mommy!” raises the atavistic hackles of my body. My heart beats a quickstep and adrenalin surges through my arteries. Mommy is ready to leap into action — to protect, shelter, comfort, respond to a child’s distress.

Because the Responsibility Troll is a body energy, you can’t will it away. It has its own purpose, its reason for being. To function effectively, we must understand its nature, honor it, and negotiate a working relationship with it.

When there’s no obvious place for the Responsibility Troll to direct its considerable power, it fixates on work, or on the people around us. It’s convinced it knows what’s best for everyone, and also convinced the world will fall apart without it.

When it’s doing what it’s meant to do, it’s an evolutionary and useful being. Not so helpful when it lumbers in where it doesn’t belong.

You can experience the Responsibility Troll by thinking of something or someone you feel responsible for. That sinking feeling in the pit of your stomach? That heaviness, that sense of overwhelm? Or that punishing self-righteousness. All of these point to the presence of the Responsibility Troll.

On the upside, it is hard-working and reliable, determined to make things work no matter what.

If the body energy of responsibility is a troll toiling in a coal mine, the soul quality of responsibility is a creature of sunlight and wings. Because it emerges from wholeness, as all soul qualities do, it understands that you — and the situation and everyone involved in it — are a radiant soul, filled with infinite power and potential. It knows that each of us has everything we need to be whole, healthy and fulfilled. No-one is broken; no-one needs to be fixed.

The Deva of Responsibility knows this. So when you fill yourself with its presence, you naturally respond to people and situations in ways that honor your own sovereignty and that of everyone else as well. You experience yourself and everyone else as already whole.

This doesn’t mean you turn a blind eye to pain and suffering. Suffering exists. You meet it with kindness, honoring your own and other people’s vulnerability and need as aspects of wholeness.

When you become part of the activity of the Deva of Responsibility, you respond with empathy, support, respect, and love — offering what your heart calls you to offer. Knowing that the person to whom you are offering your support, is also supporting you — that you are in a dance that weaves together call and response, love, support and kindness, giving and receiving.

Both you and your partner are participating in the activity of the Deva of Responsibility, learning the steps to the dance so you can dance it more effortlessly, with greater joy.

Ultimately, our responsibility is to cultivate those qualities within ourselves and in our lives that bring us to our natural state of wholeness. This requires discernment and choices.

We choose what we say yes to, what we say no to. And our yes-es and our no-es shape who we become. They also shape what we offer to the world.

If you work on your business hunched over as the Responsibility Troll, gritting your teeth to make it through that next project, pushing yourself harder, you add to the suffering of the world. Each time you treat yourself unkindly, telling yourself the end justifies the means, you increase the sum of unkindness in the world. You contribute to a lack of empathy and generosity.

How you do what you do determines the quality of your life. So when that Responsibility Troll shows up, give it something to do that lets it fulfill its natural function. Then invite the Deva of Responsibility to dance with you too. Become its shining, winged self, and see what happens next.

Oh, and listen for the tune that brings the Deva and the Troll onto the dance floor together.


I’d love to hear your stories. How do you feel when the Responsibility Troll shows up in your life? Do you have rituals for welcoming the Deva of Responsibility? Share on my Facebook page, or write about it on your own Facebook wall, with a link to this post.

Money & Me: A tale of romance & lasting love

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Last fall, my dear friend Bari Tessler Linden invited me to share the story of my relationship with money with her Art of Money community. The insightful questions in the interview, below, are hers. The responses, and the unfolding story, are mine. I share them with you because our stories have the power to heal and transform. My wish is that this post will invite you to explore your own money story, and move you to discover the rich possibilities of a deeper relationship with the Deva of money.

1. How would you describe your relationship with money?

My relationship with money is an intimate relationship between sovereign, loving, co-creative partners. Together, we shape a life, a business, a body of work and a world that serves wholeness, kindness, generosity and love.

The Deva of money has its own pattern of unfolding, as I have mine. I participate willingly and gratefully in its activity in the world, and it supports and nurtures my life and my creations.

We are soul-friends, sovereign and free, and devoted to each other. We love, support and nurture each other. Together, we are committed to shaping a world that serves and supports the perfect unfolding of all forms of life.

2. What are your strengths around your relationship to money? What really works for you in this area? Where do you rock with money? What are you proud of?

My greatest strength lies in my relationship with the Deva of Money. I love and appreciate the soul-essence of money, as well as its presence and activity in the world. I foster a culture a wholeness, integrity and sustainability in relationship to money through my own business practices, and through my writing, teaching and mentoring.

I’m proud of creating a body of work that helps conscious entrepreneurs transform their stories around money from tangled, painful patterns to clarity, belonging, right relationship and radiantly sustainable prosperity. I’m delighted to see my folks thrive and serve vibrant communities with their soul’s work.

It thrills me to see my folks welcome a consistent flow of money into their lives, and to develop ease and a sense of being at home with money.

I am grateful for the ways in which money nourishes my life. I honor its soul-essence, which is love, and am fascinated by its pattern and form — the ways in which it functions in the world.

My earliest experiences with money left me feeling outraged, shaken and powerless – they impelled me to understand and evolve a generative relationship with money. I was born and raised in India, where the uneven distribution of wealth distorts the lives of generations of people who have no hope of ever fulfilling their potential because their growing bodies don’t have the basic nourishment they need to survive, let alone to thrive.

In Bombay, the rich live in mansions or – increasingly – in luxury high-rise apartments, while outside the walls of their compounds, entire families are born, raised and die under makeshift shelters cobbled together from hammered tin cans and sheets of cardboard. Money, and the lack of it, shapes lives – profoundly — in ways that broke my heart over and over again as I was growing up.

How we approach money, individually and as a society, determines the kind of world we help to shape. On its own, money cannot create a just, generous and abundant society. But, with conscious human partnership, it can contribute to a world that provides beautifully for everyone.

To me, money is a creative force with the potential to help manifest any vision. The more holistic, expansive and generous the vision, the more positive the effects that money can have. I partner with the Deva of Money to give concrete shape to my values, and to support and nurture the people, places and causes that I love.

My gift is the ability to partner with money to create containers for deeper connection between soul and the incarnate world. With the help of the Deva of Money, I have created a home, a life and a business that offer spaciousness, ease, prosperity and beauty; delight, safety and support – as well as knowledge, skill, and creative mastery to everyone who enters my world.

3. I believe everyone has money shame. What is the Money Shame story you tell yourself? How does this show up in your life and business?

I honestly don’t feel shame around money. Even when I was young and surrounded by so much inequity and injustice, I was outraged and heartbroken, but not ashamed.

However, my stories about money have been shaped by my life experiences, and have evolved over time.

My dad used to say, “Money is like the dirt on your hands — brush it off before it clings to you.” Inevitably, he made and gave away several fortunes during the course of his entrepreneurial life. He was the first businessman of his generation to offer ownership shares to his workers and staff. He was incredibly generous with money, did not value it much, and played with money like a fish on a line – reeling it in, releasing his catch, casting again.

I don’t think it ever occurred to him that his ambivalence about money affected his family. Growing up, I never asked him – or anyone else — for what I wanted, because I knew that sometimes we were wealthy, and other times we were not. I didn’t want to embarrass my dad, or add to the tension that pervaded my parents’ marriage each time he gave away everything he had to a friend in need.

Instead, I turned to my Source for what I truly needed. I knew from a very young age that my provision, safety and security came from the Sacred, rather than from my family. This has been both a great blessing and an ongoing challenge in my life.

When my dad died, dozens of people came forward with stories about how he had paid for their children’s education from kindergarten through graduate school, through medical school, through law school and beyond; how he’d helped them build a home for their family, paid their medical bills, covered the expenses for their mother’s funeral; how he’d supported their work as artists so they could sculpt, carve, paint, make their art.

I understand his generous nature, because I share it. And, I have learned — through my life’s experiences, through my relationship with the Deva of Money — to temper generosity with discernment.

For a time, my money story was colored by my dad’s money story, until I reshaped and refined it to reflect my own truth.

Until I was in my thirties, I thought that right relationship with money meant detachment from desire. That I should not want it; that I should give it away freely when I had it, and be content with whatever came my way. I strove to live in a state of surrender and grace, trusting that what I needed would be provided, so long as I continued to do my soul’s work.

Like most stories, this one holds the nectar of truth in its heart. I did receive what I needed. And I was indeed provided for in miraculous ways.

But as I have grown in sovereignty, power and agency, my money story has changed. I understand now, what I had intuited at a very early age — that money is part of the activity of the Sacred in the world. And that right relationship with money is a dance of flow, of giving and receiving, of power and choice, of generating, creating, dissolving and birthing. It is grounded in love and respect, harmony and sovereignty, generosity and discernment, and co-creative partnership with its Deva.

My money story continues to evolve. For now, it is this: The more fully I embrace money — enjoy it, love it, appreciate it, and participate actively and generatively in its unfolding — the more fully it supports me in doing my soul’s work and contributing to the creation of a world I love. When I am in right relationship with money, I am able to joyfully support the people and causes dear to my heart, be generous and generative, and share the fruits of divine abundance with others.

4. What was a really tough money experience you went through? Please share the gory details. What did you do to get yourself through this time? What did you learn from it, and what are you doing differently because of it?

About 15 years ago, I was badly injured in a car crash which left me with several fractured vertebrae, damaged muscles, joints and ligaments, a traumatic brain injury, loss of vision in one eye, and excruciating, unrelenting pain, among other things.

My life as I had known it was changed forever.

I had a flourishing business, at the time, with a full complement of staff and an educational facility that served hundreds of students. I also had a young son still at home, a large house and gardens that were expensive and time consuming to maintain, and a husband who had recently been diagnosed with a chronic illness, and who wasn’t able to share in the care and support of our family.

It became increasingly clear that I could no longer continue to run my business at its existing scale, nor support the complex life we were living. I didn’t have the stamina to do more than the barest essentials – provide for my family, take care of my children, and heal my broken body. My husband was adamantly opposed to downsizing our home to something more manageable.

Faced with the truth of my body and its greatly diminished capacity, I ultimately made the difficult decision to close my business, end my marriage, and move to a small, rented condo with my younger son, who was just entering his teens at the time.

The next few years were a slow burn of intense, often painful healing and recovery. I struggled to work in the face of constant pain, to raise my son and to deal with the financial chaos that followed in the wake of my separation and divorce.

I emerged from that time with a deep respect for the true nature and power of boundaries and limits. I also deepened my practical understanding of how to transform obstacles into resources, and co-create my day-to-day world with the help of Devas and other allies.

The energy alchemy skills and inner patience and stability I had developed over a lifetime held me safely when there was little external safety to be found. My friends helped put ground under my feet, as did the kindness and skill of my physician, osteopath, massage therapist and other healing practitioners. Slowly, I rebuilt my health, my business and my finances.

This experience blessed me with a deeper, more loving and intimate relationship with the Deva of Money. I have experienced the loss of everything I thought was mine, and learned that nothing that is truly mine is ever lost – and that I cannot hold onto anything that does not belong to me. Loss opens the door to clarity, faith, and the life of the soul.

I know that abundance takes many forms. I recognize and honor its rhythms and cycles. I’ve learned how to stay calm in the face of adversity; how to remain financially fluid and flexible; how to feel safe and supported, no matter what. I know how to celebrate and appreciate the goodness that life brings me; how to hold the brimming cup of enthusiasm and expectancy, prosperity and support, without tipping it over by clinging to specific outcomes.

In many ways, these experiences have helped me refine and embody more fully everything I’ve learned and taught over the past forty years. Our souls create every experience to grow us – mine created a crucible in whose fire my money story was completely transformed.

5. Do you have a money practice? What does this look like for you? (e.g. Do you attend to your money relationship through a daily, weekly, monthly, and/or yearly practice? Do you have money dates? Do you use a bookkeeping system? Do you have a ‘budget-plan’?)

I take care of my money much the way I take care of everything else in my life – with daily care, attention to detail, a system that works for me, and the support of skilled professionals.

Since I have an ongoing, intimate friendship with the Deva of Money, we spend time together each day, usually in the early morning, when I do my inner work. I connect with the Deva of Money in a more focused way when I’m working on a specific project, or holding space for clients or colleagues to bring greater prosperity into their lives and businesses.

I pay all my bills online, as soon as they come in. And as I make each payment, I bless the payee, and the services and support they provide.

My system for tracking business income and expenses is homemade and low-tech — I’ve used it for over thirty years, and it works well for me. I print out and file all invoices, receipts, bills and so on in pre-arranged categories, as soon as I receive them. My assistant pulls detailed monthly banking reports, which are added to these files.

At the end of each quarter, my book-keeper enters all these into her system, and prepares quarterly statements and reports. I use these reports to track the shape of my business, to plan the quarter or the year ahead, make decisions about hiring and staffing, budget for marketing, business development and other business investments, and make strategic choices about when to create and launch new programs, product offerings, and so on.

My accountant prepares my corporate and personal tax returns at year end. Periodically, I meet with my accountant to clarify some aspect of my business’s finances, or to create a tax plan for the year ahead.

I also have an excellent lawyer who handles my business’s corporate reporting requirements, and who makes sure my will, power of attorney, medical representation, and other legal documents are up-to-date so that my executors can make financial decisions quickly and easily, if I should die or become incapacitated.

All of this is good governance, part of right relationship with money. It creates a stable financial foundation for me and my business.

6. I believe our money relationship is never “handled”. We’re always evolving, upgrading, tweaking and expanding our money lives. What are you working on right now? What’s new for you emotionally, practically, or spiritually with money? What’s the next level for you?

September is my birthday month, so for me, the New Year begins in September. This year, my mantra is: Make my life a celebration. A celebration of the beauty of this world. A celebration of sacredness and delight, community and profound relationship, abundance, prosperity and creative boldness.

Financially, this means enjoying the abundance I’ve created, letting myself rest in it, feeling the shifting boundaries of my money world, and being willing to show up and engage with what’s emerging there.

Right now, I’m adding to my team — providing my business with more solid, reliable, skilled support so it can keep growing sustainably, with wholeness as its central organizing principle, and serve even more of its right people.

The Deva of Money gently invites me to expand my understanding of the pattern it holds, for the unfolding of money in the world. And to participate in its work in a new way. In my program, Become Your Own Business Adviser, I offer energy alchemy skills for developing a deeper, more honest relationship with money. Now, I feel the call to explore and extend this work in partnership with others who are also working to create wholeness in relationship to money. It’s one of the main reasons I said yes, Bari, to your kind invitation to participate in this beautiful process of sharing our money stories.

As we heal our relationship with money, and shape new stories about its role in our world, we act powerfully to shape a world of sustainability, kindness, support and prosperity for all. I’m looking forward to how this journey unfolds, and what form my own contribution to this work will take.

7. What’s the most important nugget of money wisdom that you would wish to pass on to young people? What is the Money Legacy you would wish to leave?

Even in the narrowest of places, there lives a spirit of spaciousness, generosity, kindness, abundance and love. Money is an expression of the Sacred incarnate in the world. Meet it with curiosity, openness, respect, and love.

Your unique genius, gifts and talents are essential to the well-being of our world. Money gives you the support to cultivate your genius, and to express it in service to your community. Make it your sacred work to discover, honor, and express your soul’s gifts. Use them to co-create a world that is infused with the qualities you cherish. Develop a loving partnership with the Deva of Money, and become a generative, creative source of goodness and blessing.


The 2014 session of The Art of Money begins on January 15th. Although I haven’t personally experienced her program, I have enormous respect for Bari, and am honored to be a guest teacher in her program this year.

This is NOT an affiliate link — if you choose to take Bari’s program, I do not benefit financially in any way. However, I believe that healing our relationship with money can be the portal to healing so much else in our world. May you discover true love, and the deeper meaning of abundance, through your relationship with the Deva of money.

  • You are a sovereign being,
    a fractal of the Sacred,
    a fractal of Wholeness.
  • The flow of your life.
    The soul of your business.
  • Grow your business.
    Grow yourself.
  • Expand your life. Evolve your business.
  • The art of alignment. The miracle of action.
  • Trust in the power of your perfect unfolding.
  • Permission to grow, to flow, to know.
  • You learn about freedom by experiencing what it feels like to be bound.
  • Beyond your beliefs, beyond your drama — the truth of your life.
  • Success is becoming the person who can ask for hugs and holding when your own strength has deserted you.
  • Embrace the mystery at the heart of creation.
  • Your soul sends out tendrils of light and fragrance into the world.
  • You are the gift — and the giver.
    You are the Love, and the lover.
  • At the heart of all things — even limiting beliefs and painful programming — is wholeness.
  • Surrender is an act of will. It is aligning your will with the will of the Sacred.
  • You learn about sovereignty through the experience of being dethroned.
  • Love transforms.
  • Your soul's purpose is to participate in wholeness, to express wholeness.
  • True Desire is a messenger of your soul.
    It leads directly to your soul’s purposes.
  • Unfold the miracle of your life and business.
  • Business = Love in action.
  • Everything you need is already within you, waiting to unfold and express itself.
  • Your inner world shapes your outer world.
    Success is an inside job.
  • You are the story, and the story-maker.
    Your life is yours to shape.