This new year, have a closing ceremony

December ends with many of us in a frenzy…not just from the holidays but from the pressure we put on ourselves to set goals for the coming new year.  For many years, I would sit down with a blank notebook and stare at the vast “blankness” of the page…a blank slate upon which to dream and vision what the coming year would bring for me.  I’d make a list of my intentions that would make “The Dream” a reality.

I’d start the year off with the proverbial bang, affirming my intentions every morning and checking-off the little boxes on my to-do list of actions…moving me one step closer to “The Dream”.

And then, around the 25th of January, I would begin skipping the morning affirmations.  I wouldn’t even look at my fancy new planner with the little boxes to check-off as actions were completed.  “The Dream” would get buried under the mundane tasks of daily life.  That is…until the end of December when the whole cycle would start again.  Pretty depressing.

But last year, I decided to take a different approach.

I decided to have a “closing ceremony”.

Yes…similar to the Olympics, I decided to celebrate the losses and victories of the year that had just passed…to honor my mistakes and my accomplishments…to recall all the emotionally charged moments–good and bad–from the past year.  I thought about the conflicts I’d had with others…the times when my words and actions fell short of reflecting my highest and best self.  I also thought about all the loving and joyful interactions I’d had with the people in my life.

By doing this, I reviewed the lessons I needed to learn and saw things about myself that I hadn’t realized before.  I addressed the hidden reservations and unconscious agendas that had sabotaged “The Dream” in the last year…so they wouldn’t sabotage it again in the coming year.

In short, I contemplated the 12 months…the 52 weeks…the 365 days that had passed, acknowledged all that had happened and all that hadn’t…and released them.  By clearing out the old year, I made space for the new one just beginning.

Yes…a closing ceremony makes all the difference.

Have your own this year and connect with me to let me know how your closing ceremony went.  I’d love to hear from you.

Wishing you joyful new year,

Dr. Avanti

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It’s the end of the world as we know it…why you should feel fine.

“It’s the end of the world as we know it…and I feel fine.” -REM

Catchy tune from the 80’s.  It’s been on repeat in my head for the last month.  I woke up this morning and it’s the first thing I said to myself, my husband…my kids…who tried not to laugh at my very off-key singing.

And despite the fact that I’ve been singing those words since I first heard the song in high school, it dawned on me that until the past month, I’ve never actually stopped to think about the words and what they mean.

December 21, 2012.  The end of the Mayan calendar.  The end date of 5,125- year-long cycle that would be marked by cataclysmic events that would cause the end of the world we live in.  Throughout 2012 you’ve probably heard various doomsday prophecies that have captured the world’s attention and imagination.  Hardly anything to “feel fine” about.

So why do “I feel fine”?  And why should you “feel fine”?

Because December 21, 2012 is “the end of the world as we know it”…not the end of the world.

It’s the beginning of an extraordinary spiritual awakening, a shift in the collective consciousness of humanity.  It’s an evolution to a higher vibration from the current limited and fear-based existence of humans on Earth filled with the low vibration of violence, conflict, war and struggle.  It’s the start of a new era in which we begin to see beyond the illusion of separation from others and instead see the reality of a world connected by a web of relationships…or “oneness”.

It’s the beginning of a kinder, more peaceful and loving world…and I feel fine.

That’s your Rx for today.  Be well.

Dr. Avanti

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Albert Einstein, Marianne Williamson…and the Sikh Temple Shooting in Wisconsin

I’ve spent much of the past 12 hours thinking deeply about the tragic events that took place today at the Gurdwara (“Sikh temple”) in Oak Creek, Wisconsin.

What happened today was tragic at so many levels…tragic because my family and friends belong to the sangat (“congregation”) of the Oak Creek Gurdwara…tragic because it was an act of violence in a place of worship…tragic because it was an act of violence that will not only affect the victims and their families, but will forever affect all of humanity.

Albert Einstein once said “the most important decision we make is whether we believe we live in a friendly or hostile Universe.”

Today it probably seems that we live in a hostile Universe…where fear is the basis of most human interaction.  Fear of people from other cultures, fear of people who dress differently…fear of people with different beliefs.

But do we really live in a hostile Universe…filled with fear?

Or is the hostile Universe simply an illusion- behind which the friendly Universe is hidden away?  Perhaps the friendly Universe is “a world beyond the world we see with our physical eyes”, as Marianne Williamson wrote in her book, A Return to Love.

Perhaps the hostile Universe we experienced today is one in which people don’t feel love…because the world has become a loveless place for them.  And where love is absent, fear is present.

Perhaps replacing fear with love is the way to uncover the friendly Universe…a Universe in which acts of violence like those today at the Sikh Gurdwara in Oak Creek would not happen.

Perhaps love is the answer.

That’s your Rx for today.  Be well.

Dr. Avanti

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The Fork in the Road…you never know what your choice will mean until you have lived it

Two roads diverged in a wood, and I–I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.

The roads that diverged in Robert Frost’s poem, did so at a fork in the road.

At the fork in the road, you have a choice of paths.

The path you choose triggers something within your spiritual being that then shapes the course of your human experience.

But.   You never know what your choice will mean until you have lived it.  You never know where your choice will lead you until you have lived it.  You will never know why a choice presents itself to you until you have lived it.

So…why do you worry about whether you made the “right” choice.  Why do you worry about what will happen?  Why do you continue to believe that you have control over the how?

Why not just trust that the path you choose at the fork in the road, whichever path it is, will be the path you are supposed to choose?

That’s your Rx for today.  Be well.

-Dr.Avanti

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We Are Spiritual Beings Having a Human Experience

The wisdom of these words took my breath away when I heard them today.

“We are spiritual beings having a human experience.”

Most of us are programmed from an early age to believe that we are human beings that, if lucky enough, will have a spiritual experience during our lifetime.  We believe that we are defined by our humanity…by our bodies and our minds…and it is this belief that limits us from understanding our own limitless-ness.

Our spiritual beings choose to have a human experience, inside of a physical body on this earth, to learn things that cannot be learned any other way.  When we remember that we are more than our human form, that we are formless spiritual beings, we understand that we are one with the limitless source of the universe.

And that’s when coincidence becomes cosmic synchronicity…that’s when “luck” becomes divine grace…that’s when life becomes a spiritual journey.

That’s your Rx for today.  Be well.

-Dr. Avanti

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Why Meditation is Good Medicine

Yup…meditation is good medicine.  Actually it’s the best medicine out there.

It has no side effects, it doesn’t cost anything and you don’t need a prescription or a pharmacy for it.  You can prescribe it to yourself.

And if you use meditation everyday…if you sit still and get quiet enough…you will begin healing yourself.

Because you’ll be able to hear yourself without all the noise of the world.  You’ll hear your “inner m.d.”- your inner advisor – that knows what you need to heal yourself.

You’ll know if you need rest or nourishing food.  You’ll know if you need the advice of an allopathic physician or that of a shaman.  You’ll know if you need to feel your emotions more or love more or forgive more.

You’ll know what will help ease your symptoms of pain…or sadness…or anger…or fear.

And that’s when your healing will begin.

That’s your Rx for today.  Be well.

-Dr. Avanti

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Making Peace With My 13-Year-Old Self

It’s that time of year…new notebooks, new clothes, new teachers…back to school…

You would think that after the years and years of school that I’ve gone through that I’d be less nostalgic about this time of year.  But something about the new school year still excites me.  Maybe it’s that in some ways September, rather than January, still feels like the start of a new year.  Maybe it’s the memory of my parents telling me “great things will happen this year” and the feelings these words still evoke inside of me.

But…if I’m really honest…this time of year also evokes feelings of anxiety and insecurity inside of me.  The feelings that came from not knowing what the new school year would bring.  Of not knowing if I’d be able to keep up with the work in my classes while playing sports and being involved in clubs.  Of not knowing if my friends from last year would still like me this year…of not knowing if I’d have anyone to eat lunch with.

Funny isn’t it…how those feelings of anxiety and insecurity can follow you from the age of thirteen to the age of forty?  The memories of the junior high school girls who made fun of me because my mom wouldn’t let me shave my legs or because I was more interested in books than boys still haunt me.

But then I remember…I’m not thirteen anymore…and I don’t mind eating lunch by myself.

That’s your Rx for today.  Be well.

-Dr. Avanti

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