The Living & Dying Consciously Project

2525 Arapahoe Avenue E4-811

Boulder, CO 80302

The Living & Dying Consciously Project

2525 Arapahoe Avenue E4-811

Boulder, CO 80302

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Ayni Communications

© 2019  The Living & Dying Consciously Project

November 20, 2018

"Gratitude awakens another way of being in the world, one that nurtures the heart.”  

~ Angeles Arrien

As I prepared to write our November newsletter on the practice of gratitude, I looked up the etymology of the word. Surprisingly, I misread the dictionary definition.  I read, “The quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and return to kindness.” Return to kindness inspired me.  (The definition actually read, “…to return a kindness.”) 

For many years I have incorporated gratitude practices in my daily rituals. The thought of expanding it in...

October 9, 2018

“We remember our ancestors because it is an easy thing to forget: that we are not the first to suffer, rebel, fight, love, and die.” 

~ Alice Walker

This October I will honor my ancestors with others.

I recently moved into a co-housing community. There are 36 living units with 106 ways of doing things. Sometimes it is challenging to get anything done. But, we all agree that honoring our ancestors is an important activity.

So, we will celebrate Dia de los Muertos together on November 1, 2018.

Creating a ceremony that everyone can participate in takes time and energy. We...

July 27, 2018

Ritual and ceremony are ancient human activities. Some anthropologist think rituals are a basic human instinct.  The wisdom keepers knew that ritual ceremonies invoked a visceral experience of both the visible and invisible worlds. The bonds of community were strengthened through the use of rituals. Ceremonies provided an opportunity to be filled with a sense of wonderment.

Modern researchers have demonstrated that people who practice rituals can lower their level of anxiety and gain confidence in their own abilities to solve problems.  They better navigate the di...

April 13, 2018

“Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap but by the seeds that you plant.” 

~ Robert Louis Stevenson

I would like to say that I have been hibernating this winter but instead I have been un-settling.  In a way it has been an inward journey of digging deep into the past, releasing all that no longer serves, and honoring all the gifts that have come my way over the years. In truth, I am moving out of my home of 35 years, downsizing into a condominium in the middle of town. 

I had no idea what an enormous task this would be.

In order to live a conscious...

September 30, 2017

“May your values, memories, and life experience become the wisdom by which you bless the future.” - Rachael Freed

I attended a beautiful wedding this weekend and had the opportunity to sit with and old friend I had not seen in many years.  After catching up on life events, we settled into a discussion of the changes we witnessed in our culture and what values may have been lost along the way.  While my friend and I come from different political spectrums, we found common ground when sharing the values that are important to each of us.

I suggested that we should...

August 22, 2017

“To meet everything and everyone through stillness instead of mental noise is the greatest gift you can offer to the universe."

– Eckhart Tolle

Is your life full of drama?

According to the HeartMath Institute, drama drains your energy and makes it harder to maintain your resilience.

Drama happens on many levels. There is the initial drama during an actual event. More drama is created when you revisit the event or rehash it with your friends and colleagues. Sharing one’s reaction to drama on social media allows it to reverberate creating an environment of drama.


June 11, 2017

Summertime is always the best of what might be."

– Charles Bowden

The Summer Solstice – marking the beginning of Summer and the longest day of the year in the Northern hemishpere – is a time of magic. On the night of June 20/21, we celebrate our sun’s journey to its northernmost point, directly above the Tropic of Cancer.

It is an auspicious time, a time to balance the elements of fire and water, and long celebrated by the ancient wisdom keepers whose sacred temples were designed to align with the sun’s trajectory at this time of the year.

Even to...

June 9, 2017

“Your emotions, like a painter, color the way you see the world.” 

Our June 9th full moon is in the house of Sagittarius.  It is a time to broaden our experience of ourselves.  Full moons are often associated with the full expression of emotions.  They can encourage romance and true love or inspire raging anger and terror. 

What are you feeling today? 

Modern neuroscience reveals that our emotions define our lives. Did you know that decisions you thought were rational are actually based on your emotions?  Research now shows that both our vision and hear...

May 10, 2017

“Ann was a southern girl with a radical heart. At the center of everything she did was a true sense of compassion and caring for people.” 

~ Ann Dudley

A eulogy is a remembrance spoken at a funeral by a close friend or relative of the person who has died. It is not an obituary printed in a newspaper listing accomplishments and those who live on. A eulogy is a testament to the meaning in your life.

As an exercise, writing your own eulogy allows you to pause and consider, “How will I be remembered? Does my life reflect the values that are important to me?”  It can hel...

April 10, 2017

“I will not die an unlived life.” 

~ Dawna Markova

We are fortunate to be a part of a tipping point in our culture.  Approaches to dying, death and grief are beginning to shift; people are talking.

Conversations on death can be found everywhere – in numerous articles, bestselling books, TED talks, and among regular people who attend Death Cafés. Even the National Academy of Medicine has an ongoing conversation focused on Dying in America: Improving Quality and Honoring Individual Preferences Near the End of Life.

Much of the wisdom that comes out of these conversatio...

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