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Your Faith Has Cured You: Receiving the Healing

Excerpted from God Stories; Inspiring Encounters with the Divine By Jennifer Skiff When I was twenty years old, I was in a serious car accident. I remember looking down from a place of love at a team of medical people frantically and roughly working on my lifeless body in an operating room. I seemed to be accompanied by a presence that I could not see but which was beautiful beyond words. I was being given a choice of staying or going back to my body when I received a m

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Working with the Koan

Excerpted from Bring Me the Rhinoceros: And Other Zen Koans That Will Save Your Life By John Tarrant Zhaozhou was a minimalist. He must have expected his one-word reply to be enough to open the gates of the heart. "The thought that he knew what he was doing," I reasoned, "is more interesting than the opposite." So, what to do with this one word? It is said that once, when Robert Creeley gave a reading as part of a class he was teaching, one of the students asked, "Is th

Women Surviving Auschwitz

Excerpted from Love Carried Me Home; Women Surviving Auschwitz By Joy Erlichman Miller, Ph.D How Mady D. Coped Affiliation with her mother and believing that she would be reunited with her family played a large part in Mady's ability to cope emotionally with her early Holocaust experiences. Mady's mother, always protective of her daughter and extremely intuitive, was very supportive of and caring toward her daughter. Mady's mother was a driving

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Willpower - The Power to Change

Excerpted from Everyday Enlightenment: The Twelve Gateways to Personal Growth By Dan Millman Life's greatest challenge-one you face in each of the twelve gateways-is turning what you know into what you do. You know the importance of good diet and regular exercise; you know it's best to treat others with kindness. But until you reclaim your will-assert your power to act upon what you know-even the best plans remain unrealized. "St. Nike" Was Rig

Why You Must Learn to Set Goals

Excerpted from The Four Spiritual Laws of Prosperity : A Simple Guide to Unlimited Abundance By Edwene Gaines In order to harness your new wealth and good fortune that tithing brings you, you must learn the next spiritual law: goal-setting. Goal-setting and developing directed faith can have truly spectacular results. Like tithing, however, goal-setting works only if you actually do it. When you start tithing, the windows open and a shower of go

Who Are You Working For?

Excerpted from Overcoming Life's Disappointments By Rabbi Harold S. Kushner When I ponder the greatness of Moses, the first word that conies to mind is perseverance, perseverance in the face of frequent criticism, dedication born of keeping his mind constantly focused on the presence and the promise of the God who summoned him and assured him that He would be with him. One of my favorite stories tells of the prominent rabbi who ran into a member

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Where, When and With Whom to Meditate

Excerpted from Journey of Awakening; A Meditator's Guidebook By Ram Dass Where to Meditate Meditation is work. It helps to have a physical space to work in-a room or corner set aside for meditation. All you do there is meditate, study holy books, or chant. Do nothing there that's not part of your spiritual practice. If you have the choice, you may want to keep this corner of the room simple, just bare white walls. Or you may decorate it in keepi

What is Religion?

Excerpted from Religion By Martin Forward The answer to the question 'What is a religion?' seems obvious. A religion is: Hinduism, Buddhism or Jainism; Judaism, Christianity or Islam; Confucianism or Shinto; one of the primal, original faiths of humankind, still found in Africa, North America and elsewhere; or one among other self-contained systems of faith. If, however, we remove the indefinite article and ask 'What is

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What Is Jewish Meditation?

Excerpted from Be Still and Get Going: A Jewish Meditation Practice for Real Life By Rabbi Alan Lew I often ask this question at the beginning of a workshop just to get a sense of where everyone is coming from. The answers are usually quite various. Meditation is becoming still. Meditation is becoming more focused and concentrated. Meditation is becoming more aware of yourself. Meditation is becoming relaxed. Meditation is becoming more aware of God, becoming centered,

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What is Astrology? Relationship Signs

Excerpted from Linda Goodman's Relationship Signs By Linda Goodman Astrology is the study of man in relation to celestial bodies or, to be precise, the planets. It is a system of thought that attempts to show a relationship between man and all things. Long ago, about 10,000 B.C., hunters noted the phases of the moon by carving notches on reindeer horns. Of all the many things I have read about the history of astrology, I find this the most fasci

What Is a Prophet?

Excerpted from Prophecy: What the Future Holds For You By Sylvia Browne, Lindsay Harrison The one thing he couldn't argue with, though, was that, whether he knew how it had happened or not, he'd cured himself somehow, and thanks to some follow-up hypnosis sessions, the cure became an obviously permanent one. If he really did have a gift that would allow him to offer diagnoses and remedies to people, how could he live with himself if he refused to at least try? 

What Does the Pope Do? Religious Leader

Excerpted from Conclave: The Politics, Personalities, and Process of the Next Papal Election By John L. Allen, Jr. While religion is still a powerful force in shaping culture, it no longer controls the culture in the West. The dominant realities of the modem period are secularization and pluralism. Institutions such as the media, education, social services, and the courts operate independently of ecclesiastical control. Governments no longer compel membership in a parti

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What Are the Benefits of Prayer Partnering?

Excerpted from Prayer Partners; How Praying with Someone Can Multiply Your Blessings By August Gold If there weren't benefits to Prayer Partnering, Jesus wouldn't have suggested it, and millions of people wouldn't be practicing it. What are some of the real benefits? Kath prayed for forgiveness: "I thought I'd go to my deathbed blaming my mother for how miserably she treated me as a little girl," she said. "Until I prayed with Beverly I just cou

What Are Demons?

Excerpted from Feeding Your Demons; Ancient Wisdom for Resolving Inner Conflict By Tsultrim Allione When I first located my abandonment demon, she was a child of about five, with pathetic, shifty eyes. She had messy brown hair and big blue eyes, but she had the pointed teeth of a vampire. She said, "He's going to leave. Listen to me; you know I'm right. You know it's always going to come down to you and me. I'm the only real friend you have. I'll always be here, telling

Virgins of Venice; Broken Vows and Cloistered Lives in the Renaissance Convent

Excerpted from Virgins of Venice; Broken Vows and Cloistered Lives in the Renaissance Convent By Mary Laven The door stands open and the sunshine floods in. It lights a scene of gaiety: an elegant and airy room peopled with well-dressed nobles, and with servants carrying great platters of cakes and other delicacies-one waiter is poised with a live bird. From the wigs and costumes, it is not hard to guess that this is an eighteenth-century scene. The mood is relaxed and

Validating the Voice

Excerpted from Second Sight By Judith Orloff, M.D. I stood in front of my closet in turmoil. I had no idea what would be appropriate to wear to the meeting. It didn't occur to me that I could just be myself, wear whatever I liked. Instead, I saw my mother's eyes checking me out from head to foot. "It's such a shame," I could hear her saying. "You're so beautiful and you don't show it off." I always battled with my mother over clothes. She was an impeccable dresser in he

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Understanding Your Sun Sign

Excerpted from Secrets of the Signs: Astro-Analyze Your Life! By Stacey Wolf The Sun sign is the most important astrological aspect. The placement of the Sun at the time of your birth determines your personality and your operating style. This chapter describes each sign, beginning with the traditional first sign, Aries, and moving through to the last sign, Pisces. The dates listed for the Sun signs vary slightly year to year. These dates are the

Two Ways to Think About Meditation

Excerpted from Coming to Our Senses: Healing Ourselves and the World Through Mindfulness By Jon Kabat-Zinn, Ph.D. Having said that meditation is not a technique or set of techniques but rather a way of being, it may be useful to realize that there are two apparently contradictory ways to think about meditation and what it is all about, and the mix is different for different teachers and in different traditions. You may find me purposefully using the language of both sim

Turning Grief into Gladness

Excerpted from The Power to Prevail; Turning Your Adversities into Advantages By David Foster For most people, driving is about getting from one place to the next. But for me, twenty dollars' worth of gas can be worth two thousand dollars' worth of therapy. Nearly all my "eureka moments" have come after a few hours of solitude behind the wheel. I find it amazing how the subconscious can untie mental knots and smooth out emotional kinks during a

Tips on How to Throw an Unforgettable Holiday Party

Excerpted from An Idiot Girl's Christmas : True Tales from the Top of the Naughty List I was walking by the TV last week when an episode of a local lifestyle show caught my eye. The featured guests, two police officers, were explaining how several factors were essential to make your holiday party a successful one, and that's when I eagerly pulled up a chair to watch uninterrupted. Oh, good, I thought, they're going to fork over the recipe for J

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The Ten Commandments of Character

Excerpted from The Ten Commandments of Character: Essential Advice for Living an Honorable, Ethical, Honest Life By Rabbi Joseph Telushkin If you ask people what they most want from others, they will usually answer "good character" (whether they use precisely this expression or not). The knowledge that those with whom we interact are kind and honorable is the surest guarantee that we and our loved ones will be treated well. But if you ask peopl

The Sign of the Dog - Chinese Horoscopes Guide to Relationship

Excerpted from Chinese Horoscopes Guide to Relationship By Theodora Lau As a child, he is gifted with a great zest for life and surplus energy which could be directed to sports and group exercise. Enthusiastic, playful and happy, he would like to be involved in many activities, yet he can be reliable when given responsibilities such as caring for younger siblings or pets. He will worship his parents unabashedly and have many role models such as his teachers and sports h

The Shawmut River Baptist Church

Excerpted from Spirit and Flesh; Life in a Fundamentalist Baptist Church By James M. Ault, Jr. It was well over a month after first meeting Frank Valenti that I attended Sunday worship at his church. I had been occupied finishing up interviews with right-to-lifers and parents involved in the Fourniers' Holy Family Academy, and participating in our research seminar at Brown University. The seminar, the first offered by the university's new women's studies center, was mad

The Search for Meaning

Excerpted from Fire in the Soul; A New Psychology of Spiritual optimism By Joan Borysenko I was sitting in the dining room several weeks after my son's friend Mat Hitchcock died, looking out through a big picture window. Beds of petunias and cosmos, flowering and producing seed in their short season, blazed in pink and purple splendor in our quiet yard. The sweet scent of honeysuckle wafted in through the screen and I sat in a kind of reverie, thinking about how life ha

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The Priest - Exorcist as Hero

Excerpted from American Exorcism: Expelling Demons in the Land of Plenty By Michael W. Cuneo, Ph.D. While fascinating in its own right, evangelical and charismatic deliverance ministry never really succeeded during the 1980s in capturing the imagination of the broader American public. Deliverance inspired no blockbuster movies or bestselling books; there was no William Peter Blatty or Malachi Martin waiting in the wings to convert it into a full-fledged cultural icon. I

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