Ramadan demands that Muslims be positively active and dynamic in their community and wider society. As a people of faith we have a unilateral obligation to work for the good of all. We have the obligations of good-neighbourliness, of being concerned for others, to share their joys and feel their pains and to provide support and help wherever we can.
The term that best encapsulates the dots I am trying to join up here - spirituality and home design - is well being: that is our 'elephant'. Whether it's the thread count of the Egyptian cotton sheets you're sleeping on, your newfound yoga addiction, or unquenchable prayer/meditation habit that keeps you sane, we're all essentially doing the same thing when it comes to these lifestyle choices.
Eclipses follow a pattern of sorts in that they occur in 'sets' of a pair of opposing zodiac signs, almost six months apart and usually over a two year period. As above, so below, and over the course of the set the themes of consciousness of the traits and life areas governed by the eclipse zodiac signs plays out in both our lives and the lives of those around us.
If you'd asked me five years ago what I thought my hen-do would have been like I would have said champagne, Ibiza, new bikinis and a weekend of debauchery. Instead I'm going to be in the middle of Stonehenge, banging drums, dancing like a wild woman and honouring my inner goddess with a ceremony led by a Shamanic practitioner and pagan priestess. It's on Friday and I can't wait!
Self love is a term often banded about in spiritual enquiry and I touched on what it means to me in my blog post on vitality last week. It is not some selfish indulgence, as our minds might lead us to believe: in fact, it is quite the opposite. In order to love others fully and without judgment, conditions or limitations, we must first love ourselves in this way.
New age spiritual language has become a bog of well meaning terms that in effect mean whatever you need or want them to need, or, in fact, nothing. As much as we all want to be the light, find our truth and let it all go, whilst mantra-ing our ass down to the local yoga dojo, it's sometimes not that simple.
On Tuesday my husband Ben and I took part in a magical cacao ceremony with Joel and Aiste from the Wild Food Cafe, supported by the beautiful music of our friend Antarma. We played the singing bowls, danced, sang, drummed and prayed and it transformed what had been a challenging few days into new horizons and rememberings.
At the heart of Christmas is the Bethlehem babe, who later went on to preach that we are to love our neighbours as ourselves. Not instead of ourselves or despite ourselves but as ourselves. The all-inclusive love Jesus was teaching, therefore, includes the call to each of us to look after "number one", too.
In the earliest days of humanity's existence, everything that happened beyond anyone's control or understanding was blamed on - or credited to - the gods. It was a deeply spiritual world until the pendulum swung well over to the side of science, with a new demand for facts, hard evidence and proof rather than mere belief.
If Harry Potter's not your thing you need only look up at the night sky to consider the concept of a whole other dimension. Astronomers refer to an observable universe for good reason. Because they know that there's an unobservable one as well - that there's more 'out there' than we're currently able to detect with a telescope, despite the technological advances of recent times.
The modern world is a manic place, juggling family life with work, keeping on top of the housework, the endless barrage of paperwork, not to mention keeping up to date with technology! There are so many things that demand our time and attention. And very often it leaves very little time for getting our own needs met.
He is among the most down-to-earth, humble people I have ever had the pleasure of meeting. Kind and warm, Tommy, or simply "T" is a compassionate and sensitive man, which I suppose is at least partially responsible for his success in the entertainment industry. But there was a time when success seemed out of reach.