Perhaps there was some special seasonal magic in the air on the evening of December 15th, or perhaps it was simply the joy of gathering together in person after two years of online carol celebrations.  Whatever the reasons, we proved to be in unusually fine voice for this beloved annual tradition.

This year we were ably organized by Catherine Woodward and Sally Bullas, and led with joyful exuberance by our Carol-Master Leah Hokanson. From our initial chorale offerings at the Garden Homes, to boarding the Gertie Bus to carol outside the homes of community friends who are less mobile, to gathering at the Bolton’s hearth for our traditional hot chocolate and festive treats, the spirit of cheer and goodwill to all prevailed.  

The spontaneous harmonies of traditional spirituals and folksongs that filled Gertie as we drove back to the Garden Homes, still under the spell of our fellowship, proved to be a special highlight this year.  The power of communal singing to express caring and harmony once again shone through at this darkest time of year.

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December’s book at the Spiritual Book Club was Spiritwalker by Hank Wesselman. It generated some interesting discussions as to whether it was fact or fiction, and the group differed greatly in their opinions of the book. Jennie Shillingford provided some background information, as she had met the author and also took a year-long course with him in 2020 before he passed.

Don’t forget to register if you are interested in attending our January book club session on Jan. 20 to discuss The Nature of Personal Reality, A Seth Book by Jane Roberts. This book is world-renowned for being one of the most profound books ever written on the true nature of reality. Although this book was first published in 1974, it continues to be relevant today and it challenges our assumptions about the nature of reality, stressing that we each create our own reality.

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On Saturday, November 12th, 21 of us gathered together for a six hour experiential workshop journeying through the chakra system, with Jennie Shillingford leading the way. 

The day started with a Zoom visit with Fran Correa, a multi-talented musician from Toronto who described the sounds that relate to each chakra. Fran led us in sounding the chakras, assisted by Paul Gellman, while Brenda Gaertner played her crystal bowls. 

Next we had a group discussion about the first seven chakras, with a visual representation of the chakras identifying the relevant colours and qualities that each chakra represents. 

We partnered up to learn and share the experience of chakra balancing. Using small pendulums, we held them over each chakra point to find areas of balance and imbalance, and perhaps inform ourselves of the ultimate balance within each of us. 

A short yoga practice incorporating partner and chair yoga once again directed attention to each chakra, ending in a brief silent meditation.  A delicious pot luck lunch followed, with teas, tonics and smoothies for each of the seven chakras.  

After lunch, we continued to explore the lesser known higher chakras, followed by a chakra-guided meditation to close the session. It was a powerful and enlightening experience, and we all gained insight and awareness of the power of chakra focus in terms of healing, grounding and growth.   

Thanks to the generosity of the group, this event resulted in a sizeable donation to the Tibetan Nuns Project.

 

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