Challenge is a necessary part of life. And no one is exempt. That includes people like author-teacher extraordinaire Jean Houston. Being “famous” didn’t allow her to opt out of the process. So here are some of her conclusions after meeting difficult times:

1. “It is absolutely essential to look at what happened in fresh ways. A change in perspective can lead to the way out.”

2. “As much as you can, stop mentally re-living what happened that was so painful. As long as you focus on the pain, you will have pain. When you look for a broader landscape, you open yourself to potent opportunities for growth that await you.” While this is particularly difficult to do when working through grief, it is an essential part of our growth. Acceptance is part of the lesson inherent in grief, which makes Jean’s next suggestion even more important.

3. Jean suggests asking “hard questions,” such as: “Are you in a cauldron of pain or a chalice of opportunity?”

4. “Then try to re-frame the event so you can see it from a broader point of view. If you can do this, you open yourself to the activity of grace.”

Jean concludes, as have many others, that “personal wounding opens us, as nothing else can, to the larger reality that we all contain. Suffering cracks the boundaries of what we thought we could stand. Yet, through those cracks sprout the seeds of our growth and transformation and, yes, even the larger meaning of what happened.”

Speaking from my own experience, that “larger meaning” is always there, and it is drawing you to it with a love beyond description.

Donna Miesbach

I have been on a spiritual path all my life. I was first introduced to meditation when I was seventeen. I knew this was an important tool, but I wanted to go deeper than that particular method allowed, so my search began. I attended workshops and classes, read books and tried every form of meditation I could find, to no avail. Then in 1994, my life changed dramatically. My husband died very suddenly. Soon after that, I lost both parents, too. They say when the student is ready, the teacher appears. This student was certainly ready. About a year after my husband’s sudden death, I learned about Dr. Deepak Chopra and his teachings. It was like finding the light at the end of the tunnel. I took meditation training from Dr. Chopra and began attending his courses. They fed my deep roots and made such a difference in my life that I committed to being certified both in meditation and yoga so I could share these wonderful practices with others. I have studied with Deepak and also Roger Gabriel both here and in India. I also studied sound healing with Jonathan Goldman, and remote viewing with Dr. David Morehouse, having completed all five levels of his training. As my teaching became established, doors began opening that allowed me to teach meditation to at risk youth. Then another door opened and I found myself working with Playmakers Mentoring Foundation, a Sacramento-based outreach. Together with their Executive Director, we wrote a book and then opened a chapter here in Omaha. In addition to my work with Playmakers, I continue to teach meditation in the Omaha NE area, offering both private and group instruction. I also hold group meditations and programs five times a year, and speak to groups on various aspects of spirituality upon request.   It has been an amazing journey, one I never could have anticipated. I didn’t know it then, but I know now that it is possible to get to the other side of grief, and that is what my book, “From Grief to Joy, A Journey Back to Life & Living,” is all about.

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