I am busy creating away (something BIG is coming), but I wanted to touch base and share some powerful links that feel like the sweetest music to my eyes and ears. Click on the articles below and read how some huge feminine truths are hitting the mainstream:
First, Monica Lewinsky (yes, Monica Lewinsky) recently spoke at TED and her heroines journey is just epic. Watch this video where she delivers the home run of home runs on compassion.
This incredible piece in The New York Times about medicating women’s feelings. The publication of this piece makes me look up and whisper “thank you, thank you”.
In Fortune, we have a female company president apologizing to all the mothers she used to work with. Katharine Zaleski writes:
‘I read Sheryl Sandberg’s Lean In, thinking it would motivate me. It only depressed me more. To me, the message was clear: put up with the choices made by a male-dominated work culture if you want to succeed. I reread Anne Marie Slaughter’s piece on “Why Women Can’t Have It All.” It just painted another reality that I had contributed to until it became my own problem.’
Then this stunner from The Huffington Post: Seven Reasons Why Your Wife is Stressed Out All The Time. I love this one so much. Men have an immense desire to fix their wife’s problems and this article shows them how.
Finally in Time.com, fitness classes all over the country are inviting sisters to let it out. Our physical health is not just about physical fitness.
I hope at least one of these links helps you feel saner, freer, braver, and friendlier to your emotional realm.
Much more to come….
March 29, 2015
I’m having a love affair with the word “sorry”. Truly, we can’t get enough of each other. And it’s so, so, so good. It wasn’t always so hot between me and this wonder word, but my divine feminine obsession led me to her. Now that I’ve really gotten to know her, we’re inseparable.
“Sorry” exists to heal conflict, unleash love, and create connection. So straightforward, right? But when our ego’s lead the way “sorry” often gets tangled up with condemnation, blame, judgement and all the other intense players of either-or thinking. This means that when conflict arises, instead of saying “sorry” many folks immediately go to a rational defense which typically looks like some variation of these deflections:
“But that’s not what I meant, you’re misunderstanding”
“I didn’t do anything wrong”
“I’m doing the best I can”
“This is your issue, not mine”
It’s like stepping on someone’s foot and then saying, “Oops! I didn’t mean to do that. Good luck with your pain.” If you accidentally stepped on someone foot you would simply say “sorry,” but for some reason when we accidentally step on someone’s heart – many of us get defensive, withhold “I’m sorry”, and argue.
In the Spanish language “sorry” is “lo siento” which means “I feel it.” It does not mean “I’m wrong”. In English “sorry” is an offspring of “sorrow” – meaning you empathize with the emotional world of another. It does not mean “I screwed up and I lose.”
Used as it is was designed, sorry conveys,
“I see you,”
“You are important to me,”
“I feel it,”
“I feel you,”
“I know that my behavior affected you and it matters,”
“If I could change how things went down I would,”
Wow, right? All of this divine feminine juju in one little 5-letter word.
When I catch myself in defense-land, a.k.a. when my logical mind insists I did nothing wrong, stepping forth with “I am sorry” anyway, always takes me to a greater experience of love…and isn’t that what we’re all ultimately after?
Another way to view this is to always honor the emotional world first and after it is seen, then you can process rationals.
So I hope this inspired you to research your own relationship with this power word. Notice when you say it and when you don’t. And maybe research what happens if you say it when your defenses are super high. You may discover something wondrous.
January 21, 2015
My posts seem to have an important theme this fall -> honor how you feel. Not in a self-indulgent way, but honoring how you feel on behalf of healing/health.
In the world of feminine reclamation honoring how you feel is a big deal as unhonored emotions are an immense obstacle to the flow of authentic feminine power. So with this said, I would like to talk to you about the wildly cosmic…Inner Bitch.
All women have an Inner Bitch and she is a doozy. She is at the root of all PMS jokes. She can be an incredibly effective protector, but often she slips into righteous anger and like a feral animal trapped in a cage, she paces back and forth ruminating “why, why, why?”
When the indignation of my Inner Bitch rises, my Higher Mind always gets embarrassed and tries to intervene with, “It’s all part of a divine plan. Will you just relax!” Despite my Higher Mind’s good intentions, there is not a wise word in the universe that could get her to chill. She is human animal: primal, defended, and convicted.
Luckily, my Higher Mind has had enough experience with my Inner Bitch that it has come to know this very important thing: my Inner Bitch is sacred. Like, MEGA sacred. She’s so sacred that you could even call her a divine conduit. Yep, this seemingly petty, quasi-illogical part of me, is a doorway to the other side.
When she’s in a tizzy, if I can muster up the awareness to turn towards her and say “Yes, what you are standing for right now is totally legit…” (even if my Higher Mind secretly believes otherwise), she deeply exhales.
Then, if I let her say every single thing that’s on her mind (and I mean every. single. thing.) she eventually steps aside and something very cool happens…my Inner Knowing beams bright.
After my Inner Bitch has had her due, intuition and I have a graceful and vivid dance. As if every cell in my body is connected to the currents of divine conspiracy, I can suddenly can see my soul’s code/my karma/my divine plan with significant clarity.
Trying to rationalize my Inner Bitch does nothing but inflame her, but honoring her liberates divine order. Go figure. It’s nothing short of miraculous.
This was the way of the witch. Though our society has come to associate the word “witch” with sinister old women, witches were actually divine portals. They connected to the unseen universe by consciously diving deep into their emotional world.
Witches knew what most modern women are just beginning to reclaim today: that subjective emotional truth is extremely valuable.
So here are five ways to honor your Inner Bitch:
1) WRITE – This is my favorite. I write everything down that my Inner Bitch has to say and then I burn it while reciting a prayer for divine resolution. Here’s a post about it.
2) MOVEMENT – Put on a fierce song and dance it out.
3) CREATE – Put all your betrayals and heartache into form and create a piece of art.
4) SPILL IT – Ask a trusted friend to give you some Inner Bitch time. Have her set the timer for 10 and let your Inner Bitch say whatever it wants (WARNING: THIS FEELS AMAZING). Then when your done, switch and give your friend a chance to let it rip for 10 minutes.
5) RITUAL – This one is super creative. What does your emotional world yearn for? Justice? Connection? Security? To be seen and loved? Partnership? Figure out the answer and create a ritual that symbolically satisfies that yearning.
Witches didn’t have to go to church and listen to a preacher in order to commune with the divine. All they needed was awareness, some time and space, and their Inner Bitch.
Love, love, love,
November 22, 2014
It is exciting times – I am hiring my very first full-time-ish employee!
I am seeking a Denver-Boulder, Colorado resident to help with technical aspects of raising up and marketing The Goddess Process online brand.
The ideal candidate must have good graphic design, customer service, organizational and editing skills to help manage:
- Social Media Campaigns
- Plus all other aspects of an online presence
This is a 30+ hour position that pays $18 an hour.
Candidate must be able to create systems for a growing online biz and enjoy problem solving.
This is a great opportunity for someone who wants to use their technology gifts towards benefiting others and to grow with a promising brand.
Please send your resume, a cover email explaining why you would be great for this position, and submit three Facebook quote blocks that you created from any of my site content. Please go to Byron Katie’s Facebook page for an example of quote blocks.
Looking forward to meeting you!
November 6, 2014
In the world of psychology it is commonly believed that anger, fear, shame, and guilt are secondary emotions. Meaning they are not what is truly happening for a person. Just scratch the surface of these four (which is what all good therapists know how to do) and you will almost always find grief.
For many reasons most humans can’t stand feeling grief (which is such a bummer, cuz grief is some magical stuff…but that’s another post.) Grief is so disliked by our logical mind that it sends in these four emotional states to distract us:
Anger: who says grief is unacceptable
Shame: who says there is something wrong with you for experiencing grief
Fear: who claims that grief is scary and dangerous
Guilt: who says don’t pay attention to grief, focus on how terrible you are instead.
Anger, shame, guilt, and fear definitely have their valuable place in the world, but if you frequently suffer from one or more of these four – check yourself for unattended grief.
Is just reading this post making a part of your body tense? Do you believe being grief-stricken is wrong or it’s not for successful/cool people? Do you ignore the (abundant) sadness of being alive? Do you believe if you allow your grief, it may never end?
This time of year, as much of Northern Hemisphere watches the leaves die, the days shorten, and the winds sweep in – grief is just in the air. This makes for a potent time to consciously be with it.
As I contemplate nature and grief, wolves come to mind. Wolves are so bad-ass for many reasons AND they rock grief. When they need to howl, they howl. No buts. No ambivalence. Just pure broken heart.
If this post speaks to you, take some time to simply be with your body and scan where some grief may be hiding out. Say hello, do a simple candle lighting ritual to honor it, feel the tenderness of your heart, write your feelings down on paper, and maybe…you know…cry.
Befriend the sadness of your heart and truly be free.
On a final note, here is an awesome video about the benefit of re-introducing wolves to Yellowstone National Park. I see it as a metaphor for grief (the wolves) and the human body (Yellowstone). Re-introduce grief and watch the eco-system of your body thrive.
Happy new moon,
October 24, 2014
If you asked me what my favorite holiday is I would have to say El Dia de Los Muertos – The Day of the Dead.
Not that I am morbid, but compared to other holidays, the really-realness of the Day of the Dead just wins me over every year. It is a complete match with my values in the following three ways:
- It’s authentic: There is typically very little pretense at a Day of the Dead party. Everyone’s emotional truth is on the table: someone they loved crossed over. They are participating to honor their loved one and their grief.
- It’s connected: Everyone who attends is instantly connected to each other because they have all met the incredibly surreal world of love+loss.
- It’s healthy: Coming together with a small group to honor one’s grief is very healthy thing to do. Your emotional world (which greatly affects your physical, mental, and spiritual worlds) will thank you.
The Day of the Dead celebration is a stunningly elaborate creation in Mexico that requires weeks of preparation. I have some U.S. friends who go to town re-creating Mexico’s traditions: sugar skulls, homemade chocolate, traditional altars. They would all attest that the preparation is as nourishing as the actual event.
But if you’re like me – with a very fixed amount of time and energy – you can pull off a super meaningful night without all the traditional embellishments. Here’s all you need:
- An altar made from a black box – You can cover a cardboard box with black material or paint it with black spray paint. If you can make a three-tiered altar (a very large box on the bottom, a medium box in the middle, and a small box on the top) that is ideal.
- Candles — A dozen tea lights are sweet and easy.
- Chocolate – Buy a handful of assorted chocolate bars for dessert.
- Fresh flowers
- Small plates
Invite a group of close friends. The smaller the better, so try to cap it at twelve. Ask invitees to bring:
- A picture of a loved one they would like to honor
- The loved one’s favorite food for a potluck dinner
- A fresh flower
After your guests arrive, have them put a small piece of the meal they brought, a piece of chocolate, and their flower (trim the stem with the scissors) on one of the small plates. Then giving everyone a turn (about 5 minutes each), invite them to:
- Hold up the picture and introduce who they are honoring.
- Tell a story about their awesome loved one.
- Toast the loved one’s quality that they miss the most.
- When they are done, have them place the picture on the shrine next to the small plate which is an earth offering to the loved one (according to Shamanism our ancestors LOVE when we make offerings of food and nature because they miss it so much.)
- Finish by lighting a candle for the loved one and place it next to the food on the shrine.
After everyone has had a chance to share, the evening is finished off with the potluck, chocolate, and more informal sharing.
There it is.
I hope this inspires you to celebrate this special evening. You’ll be so glad you did.
October 15, 2014
I think one of the most difficult and detrimental aspects of modern society is the lack of rites, rituals, and reference points that help a grieving human thru.
Life’s little disappointments happen often and are provocative enough, but then there are the major losses: marriage ending, loved one dying, losing one’s innocence…to name just a few.
Considering that we all will face grief’s intensity at multiple points in our lives, modern society seems to set us up to:
1) deny grief (which then channels it into illness/anger)
2) meet our grief with fear and anxiety
Shortly after arriving to Seattle eleven years ago, my father was diagnosed with cancer. My husband and I rushed our wedding to ensure my father’s attendance. Prior to the wedding my dad and I would listen to the radio, seeking the perfect song for our father-daughter wedding dance. One day we heard “Forever Young” by Rod Stewart and we both immediately agreed it was the one.
My husband and I were married in January 2003 and my father passed away the following August. After he died I felt conflicted about my grief. While he was a nurturing father, he was also a very unhappy man and seemed without any inclination/awareness to change that.
I felt burdened by his discontent, so when he passed away, my ego developed a very thick belief that he was “better off on the other side.” This thought took precedence over my tears. My rational mind trumped my emotional world and my grief was placed in the backseat.
Fast forward to this past summer when, just before leaving Seattle, I began the process of forgiving my father for being unhappy. Then on August 10th, as my family and I were pulling into our new Colorado home, “Forever Young” played on the radio. I felt happy to hear it and that was a good test that my forgiveness process was coming along.
A month later, with a seeming bazillion transitions (new house, new schools for kids, new routines, etc.) I suddenly began feeling super anxious and afraid at night.
My passion for emotional health came in quite handy and within a week I was able to decode my anxiety. Since I had forgiven my father, the grief I refused to feel eleven years prior was finally flowing. As soon as I got my mind on board with that, the fear subsided and the tears released.
This is a good time of year to intentionally honor grief. Autumn vividly illuminates the dying cycle of life. Between late October and early November the veil between worlds is thin. Halloween and Mexico’s Day of the Dead celebrations are ultimately about this phenomena.
So this autumn I am making it a priority to welcome the grief around my father’s departure by:
- Listening to my father’s favorite music. I’ve created a playlist called “Dad” (Bob Seger, anyone?) which includes “Forever Young” (and makes me weep every time.)
- Journaling about my father: I write honestly about anything I am feeling/remembering about him.
- Journaling to my father: I write him letters about whatever comes to heart and mind.
- Attending a Day of the Dead party: I will gather with some friends, make his favorite meal, and share a story about his life.
- Most importantly and in my super busy life, I am carving out space and giving myself 100% permission to be a blubbering, sobbing, sorrow-filled goddess, for as long as needed.
P.S. – Need a little help with honoring your emotional world? Got something that needs forgiving? The Goddess Process rides again Wednesday October 29th (weekly format!)
October 8, 2014
Today, inspired by the most awesome find, I am writing about the phenomenal world of self-pleasure.
A huge piece of feminine reclamation is
1) to unabashedly own the fact that the feminine essence is a highly sensual force
2) that sensual forces are designed to receive and exude pleasure
This means that exploring and revering your unique sensual terrain is a ultra bright move towards health and wholeness. The wondrous world of self-pleasure is a mighty path to this end.
Endorphins are released, oxytocin is emitted, stress is relieved, intuition is accessed, and sensuality is expressed. Instead of the ego’s harsh edges, the feminine power of connection reigns.
Self-pleasure seems pretty holy to me.
I am not a sensuality expert, but here’s the little I know about self-pleasuring options:
- Hand/Fingers – As we all know, they work well.
- Vibrators – I’ve never owned one, but they seem super popular.
- Rushing water – If/When you can score a source, it is probably the best way to self-pleasure.
And, I am super excited to add to the list:
- The Chakrub – The Chakrub is made from pure energy crystals and as I hope you are imagining…it has many talents. As soon as I laid my eyes on this divine creation it was love at first site. I bought mine in Indian Jade.
Chakrub’s mama is named Vanessa and she is extending my readers a 10% discount. Just use code “Goddess10”.
A SPECIAL NOTE TO “INORGASMIC” SISTERS: Don’t fret, loves. Sensuality heroine Nicole Daedone has eradicated the “inorgasmic” label by redefining “orgasm.” Instead of “the achievement of climax”, it is simply and profoundly “the reception of pleasure.” This means in the world of female orgasm, there is nothing to achieve and lots of pleasurable sensations to receive. Check it out;-)
Speaking of the sensations of your body…do you revere yours? If not sister, I have a fabulous experience for you: The next Goddess Process Live course is in Seattle and it’s the weekly version! Beginning Wednesday, October 29th – Wednesday, December 10th (no class on November 26th).
The Goddess Process Live is for you if…
- There is something about woman nature that eludes you
- You doubt your emotions and your sensitivity
- You desire better relationships that truly see you
- You are interested in decoding the messages your body is communicating
- There is something about being “spiritual but not religious” that is lacking
- Realizing the path of self-love seems arduous
- You feel somewhat disconnected from your value as a woman
- You desire to heal/restore your health
“Thank you. Your work is so powerful and healing and I flew home on my bike like I was one with all of humanity, the earth, the sky, and eternity.” A.S. Seattle, WA.
“I just had the privilege of spending three magical days in The Goddess Process where I was masterfully and joyfully guided through the re-enthronement of the Feminine Essence within myself, my relationships and my community. Thank you Dara, your work is empowering, transformative and kissed by the Divine.” Lauren Herold, Seattle, WA, Intuitive Healer
October 1, 2014
Prior to June 2012, I was among the millions of folks who would rather get a root canal then forgive. Before that fateful month, when anyone ever suggested the idea to me my inner teenager would roll her eyes and quietly scowl “wow, you really don’t understand.”
Today the tables have turned and now I am the one suggesting forgiveness and receiving the incredulous looks. When I mention the “forgive” word, people act like I just handed them a sock that was stuck in the washer for 10 years. Every muscle on their face contorts and says “ew.”
Why is this forgiveness thing such a buzzkill?
Forgiveness is often defined as pardoning an offense, but the truth is that pardoning is just part of the forgiveness equation, and more often then not, pardoning is the result of the forgiveness process. Forgiveness’ true definition is that which heals betrayal.
Betrayal is intense, right? Google defines betrayal as “…the breaking or violation of a presumptive contract, trust, or confidence that produces moral and psychological conflict…”
All true, but I don’t really feel it.
So here’s my really-real definition: Betrayal arises when someone or something you trusted fails you, often without any notice, leaving you up against a dark void of loss that your mind fervently struggles to compute.
And if that isn’t hard enough, betrayal almost always paves the way for divine rupture (“How could God let this happen to me?”) and self-aggression (“There must be something wrong with me that this happened/I let this happen.”)
The world of betrayal is super intense and life seems to betray us often.
So as trite as the word “forgiveness” is for so many, it’s true definition is designed to tackle a world of immense confusion, incomprehensibility, and emotional suffering. Thus, this can only mean that forgiveness is…a total badass.
In June 2012, I read something on forgiveness that framed it in a way that I was able to get. I had been carrying the pain of a major betrayal for way too long and it seemed that forgiveness could help. Since I still had no clue how to forgive I said a little prayer that bascially declared I was willing to be shown. And shown I was.
I imagine you are now wondering “OK, So how do I it?” There is no exact prescription as it all depends on the person and their unique situation. However, the numero uno essential ingredient is desire.
This post invites you to answer two Q’s:
1) Do you cringe, wince, bubble with anger, flush with shame, and/or fill with fear when recalling certain events of the past?
2) Do you desire to heal them and feel peaceful again?
Often the answer to Q number 2 is “no” or “no, not now” and that’s legit.
If the answer to Q number 2 is “yes”, no need to rush out and “do” anything. Just let yourself marinate in the “yes”. It’s a major declaration and the universe is listening.
So today, to the disbelief of my inner teenager, I am a forgiveness guide. Being that I have always been a junkie for emotional health, the divine, and all things magical, it makes perfect sense that I have arrived to this point.
One piece of the ever dynamic Goddess Process Live course is to invite participants to begin a serious contemplation on forgiveness. Then any Goddess Process Live grads who decide it’s time to lighten their emotional load are invited to do a Forgiveness & Freedom 4-week follow-up course that journey’s participants down the river of forgiveness in face-to-face soul-sisterhood. It’s hot.
I will be writing more about this topic in the future, though if you’re ready to heal a betrayal now, The Goddess Process Live is where to start and it delivers in spades. The next course is September 26-28, 2014 in Seattle, WA (click here to register!)
“Dara’s spirituality is so alive, you can almost see it, taste it and smell it. By the end of the Goddess Process, I had a very real sense of my own feminine strength and wisdom, which I realized I had lost somewhere along my spiritual path. How silly to think I could’ve carried on much further without it. Dara was the perfect muse to help me re-birth it back into the world.” Rev. Allison Anton, Author of True Healing
September 5, 2014
It’s a huge moment in the rise of The Goddess Process. I have contracted with the most phenomenal facilitator. I can hardly believe 1) that this day has finally come and 2) how incredible this woman is.
Without further ado: I present to you the WORLD’s very FIRST Goddess Process Facilitator: The ever-evolutionary Carissa Morris!!! Read on and see why I am beaming with pride:
1) Describe your path to becoming a Goddess Process facilitator?
The first Nia class I ever took was taught by Dara and the minute it started I knew I was in the right place. In front of me was a strong, tall woman (it’s rare to see a woman my size leading a fitness class) leading us in a spiritual and athletic dance movement class.
I knew there was something special about Dara and I proceeded to soak up whatever passions and guidance she doled out. From her first retreat in Mexico, which was magical, to taking the Mama Gena’s Mastery Course at the School of Womanly Arts, to the current version of Dara’s teachings, The Goddess Process.
I’ve taken Dara’s courses multiple times and never tired of their profound wisdom. I remember thinking “I want to teach this some day!!” and here I am, teaching this genius material to anyone who’s genius enough to sign up.
As someone who is trained as a coach and therapist, who’s work has a strong spiritual leaning, and who is constantly and continuously committed to the raising up of the feminine, I am the perfect goddess for this job. And I am SO honored that Dara saw that in me.
2) What does feminine power mean to you?
Intuition, inner knowing, gut feeling. There are so many different names for it, but I think intuition is at the core of feminine power. Feminine power is both soft and fierce. That’s the magic of it. It’s impenetrable, yet surrendering. Obstacles and issues melt away in the face of pure feminine power.
3) If you had the ear of every woman in the world for one sacred minute, what would you want them to know?
Your feelings are right. Your desires are holy. The emotions you are experiencing are there for a reason. Your power lies in the honoring of ALL your feelings, desires, and emotions.
4) If you could spend 24 hours with anyone, alive or dead, who would it be an why?
Dr. Martin Luther King. Whenever I hear his speeches, I cry. I’m not much of a crier, so the fact that I burst in to tears when I hear him speak gives me an indication that he is/was a direct messenger of the divine. Also I think he embodied the divine feminine in such an elegant way – nonviolence, power, compassion, change, courage, grace, love, and forgiveness. He epitomized ‘power from within’ versus ‘power over’.
5) What gets you most excited about being a Goddess Process Facilitator?
Being able to deliver such profound information in such a sacred setting. Flexing my priestess muscles. Changing lives with the information that has changed mine. Being a part of re-enthroning the feminine in our world!! I can’t think of anything better or more important.
Do you see why I’m in love???
Carissa is getting right to work with re-enthroning the feminine for twelve very special women Sept 26-28th in Seattle WA. I’ve had the privilege of being facilitated by Carissa I know firsthand that she delivers the goods with grace and power.
“The Goddess Process is a deep dive into everything that we should honor in being a beautiful Goddess of this compassionate planet. Every female I know should take this class and realize their true gifts and once and for all, claim their brilliance!” - Trina Gadsden, Photographer
“As a healer and witch who has lived and breathed all things Spiritual and Goddess for years- I thought I had the feminine essence allll figured out, I thought I had my Inner Goddess down. That is until I arrived at the Goddess Process. Through the course of the weekend I learned that I had been working with my Inner Goddess via a masculine approach- thinking, willing and efforting to connect with her. Learning that the way to really listen to her (which is listening to the Divine) is through my emotions, my body, my impulses, and my visions changed everything. My feminine nature doesn’t make sense because “making sense” is of the mind, the ego. From this course I allowed myself the spaciousness of not making sense – and in so doing, walked away from the course feeling validated and divine in the wild, cooky, visionary, unnameable and unwilling to conform woman that I am! I feel for the first time I have tools to get my ego/mind on board to manifest my Goddess Destiny!” – Lauren Herold, Healer
Click the image below to secure your sacred spot!
August 26, 2014