The Total Human

The Earth-Heart Institute of Vision and Healing
Vision Quests, Spiritual Retreats, Women's Retreats, Kundalini Yoga & Meditation, Personal Intensives

January 2006

Welcome to the quarterly newsletter of the Earth-Heart Institute of Vision and Healing. We offer Vision Quests, Spiritual Retreats, Women's Retreat, Kundalini Yoga and Meditation, Personal Intensives, Healing, and Spiritual Counseling. This newsletter will offer thoughts on a chosen topic with simple awareness exercises, meditations, or yogic tips that relate to the topic. We will also update you on our class schedule, recommend books or products that relate to living a healthy and conscious life, and offer some web links to check out that support a greater and more unified Vision of the world, the expansion of the human spirit, and the protection of the environment. If you are not interested in receiving these newsletters once each season, you can click on the “unsubscribe” button at the bottom. Click on our name (above) to visit our complete web site.

We must consciously travel only part way toward our goal,
and then leap in the dark to our success.

--Henry David Thoreau—

Even if our efforts of attention seem for years to be producing no result,
one day a light that is in exact proportion to them will flood the soul.

--Simone Weil--


Here it is once again, the beginning of a New Year, the time when many of us are making our New Year’s Resolutions. It’s a time of year often met with mixed feelings of both dismay at how quickly time seems to be passing, and also relief that we’re at a new “beginning,” and that things will somehow be different this next time around. “This year will be the year when I finally …..” Only to be met a month or two from now with disappointment in ourselves that we have failed at our resolutions for change.

But the fact is that “New Year” is really a state of mind, not a date. There is great truth is that old cliché “Today is the first day of the rest of your life.” That statement is true not only on January 1st, but rather every single day for each and every one of us. I don’t say that to put a damper on your well-intentioned New Year’s Resolutions, but to remind you that your “New Year” begins every single day. If you don’t meet all the goals you set on January 1st for the rest of the year, remember that tomorrow is also a new beginning. And frankly, in that same vein, your “New Year” can start in a single moment – you don’t need to wait until the next day.

At any given moment in time,
your “New Year” begins, your new life begins,
if you choose to see that reality and the tremendous opportunity it contains.

Time as we perceive it isn’t real, it’s all relative. It’s a human construct, so choose to use it in a way that works in your favor. Change your perspective of time so that you don’t use it as a marker of how much of your life has passed, and how much you’ve failed to achieve in the artificial time constraints you’ve set for yourself, but rather as a reminder of how you are in a perpetual state of beginning and creation… now… now… now… Right now, in this moment, you can begin to enact all the change you have the courage to make in your life.

On a practical note, why do we fail at our resolutions to change? The factors needed are: 1) the inspiration to change, 2) clarity to see what it will require of you, 3) willingness to surrender into the process of change, and 4) enough energy to follow through. Look at those 4 areas and take an honest inventory of your relationship to each step. If you still cannot find your answer, I would suggest going back and taking a closer look at #3, the process of surrender.

Often, we feel that we want very much to change in a certain area, but we can’t seem to make it happen. At those times you need to ask yourself, “What do I get out of not changing? How does staying stuck in this place serve me?” That question often elicits an indignant response. You may say, “That’s ridiculous! Of course I want this to change. This is making my life miserable, and I can’t stand it anymore.” But the fact is, if 100% of you really wanted to change it, you would. Maybe 98% of you sees the need for the change and is completely ready for it to happen, but there may be a very stubborn 2% of you that is refusing to budge, refusing to surrender. That’s the part of you that I’m speaking of. That’s the part of you that is somehow served by the present state of affairs, the part of you that gets some benefit out of staying stuck.

Find that small, stubborn part of you and honestly ask those questions. Maybe the answer is that if you stay in the same patterns, you don’t have to move fully into your own power. (That’s a frightening step for many people). Maybe it’s fear of the unknown, of not knowing who you would be in the world if you had to release all the old definitions and perceptions of yourself. Maybe staying stuck enables that small part of you to feel justified in complaining and feeling like a victim rather than taking responsibility for your life and your choices in it. It’s clearly not the most the most enlightened aspect of who you are!, but perhaps it’s a part of your reality at the present time that you need to work with. It’s a starting point you can identify.

Then again, sometimes the lack of change is just a matter of not being the right time. In the bigger picture, perhaps other elements need to fall into place before the particular change you are focused on can happen for you in the best possible way, even if you can’t see what the other elements are yet. This is also part of step #3. Surrendering into the process of change means coming to terms with the fact that sometimes change doesn’t happen in the way you think it should, and in your perceived (and arbitrary) time frame. When something becomes important enough to all of you, and the time is right, it will happen. In fact, it’s happening already. Change is always in progress, even when it’s occurring on more subtle levels you haven’t yet noticed. Be patient.

Our greatest wish for you at this time of year (and always) is the continued unfolding of your greatest gifts, the parts of you that are unique and essential pieces of this puzzle and adventure called Life. Keep doing your deep, personal work. Remember that it’s not ALL work, and keep participating in things that bring you joy and great delight. Remember that the more healing and transformation you undergo personally, and the more you allow yourself to experience joy and delight, the more you carry those energies, and you carry the possibility for others. They will feel that possibility for themselves within you. You will become a Light, and every person you meet and situation you are in will be blessed by the deep, personal work you’ve done. We wish for you to be in situations and in company that bring you more alive, and that support who you are at your core, for each of you deserves nothing less.

And so your New Year begins…now… now… now.
Happy New Year. And Happy New Year tomorrow.
We hope our paths will cross with you again.



Stop wearing your watch for a week (or forever ).

Yes, I know, you’re a busy, important person with places to go and things to do and meetings to attend. Take off your watch anyway. Reconfigure your relationship to “time.” Trust me, there are plenty of clocks around when you need to pick up your kids from school, or be at a meeting; but you really don’t need to be aware of it minute by minute. You can always ask someone wearing a watch if you really need to know (you might even meet someone new by reaching out and opening a conversation). See what happens when you begin to move through your day and through each activity without the pressure of time as your motivator. It’s very freeing. You’ll begin to be less aware of the minutes, and more aware of the moments.


Take a walk out in nature without the constraints of time or destination. Wander.

Some of you will be familiar with this exercise, but you cannot do this too many times.

If you have a problem you are wrestling with, before you start out set the intent that you would like to receive information that will help you in your struggle. And then just wander out in nature. Even in a city you can find a place to hike not too far away. Do it when you don’t have anything scheduled afterward which would force you to be aware of the time. Wander. Sit. Relax. Notice the small things around you. Notice what they have to tell you. Keep an open mind and see what happens.


Our 2006 brochure was mailed out in October and November. If you’re not already on our annual brochure mailing list, and would like to receive one (or if it got lost in the sea of holiday catalogs), just email your mailing address information to us at and we will send one out to you with a full list of our programs and dates. Our addresses are never shared or sold, and remain strictly private.


Click on the underlined links below to read about a particular class, or go to Earth-Heart Programs to read about other classes not listed here, and Student Comments to read comments from past participants.

NEW CLASS! Our first Small Group Intensive, with the theme “Fear” is scheduled for March 5-10 in Malibu , CA. Fear is the root of all problems in life, whether physical or spiritual. It is the root of our insecurity, anger, and depression, and it weakens our health. We will be dealing with the many guises of fear and the tools to resolve and heal it. The class will be limited to a maximum of 10 people, and because it is in a group format, it is a chance to experience the work done in a Personal Intensive for a slightly lower cost, with camping fees and food included in the price. If fear is holding you back, this is a great program to work with it very directly.

NEW CLASS! Our creativity retreat Your Wild Creative Soul: Free Your Mind And the Rest Will Follow will take place March 23-26, 2006 (Thurs-Sun) at the Holy Spirit Retreat Center in Encino , CA (a 10-acre retreat center in the Los Angeles area). You have no idea how powerful you would be and how much your life would change if you would unleash the enormous creative flow within you. If you learned how to surrender into a sense of spontaneity and play and fun. If you learned how to let go of self-judgment and allowed your soul’s creative expression. Your work will become dynamic, your relationships will deepen, your level of abundance will increase, your health will improve, your level of happiness will rise… your life will change. This class is going to be FUN. And messy! (“Do one thing every day that scares you.” – Eleanor Roosevelt)

Personal Intensive dates are available sporadically now through early June. Only 2 Intensives are scheduled per week. Currently, the dates available are:

Tues Jan 3 - Sun Jan 8
Sun Jan 8 - Fri Jan 13 (only one spot left)
Mon Jan 16 - Sat Jan 21
Sun Jan 22 - Fri Jan 27 (only one spot left)
Sun Jan 29 - Fri Feb 3
Sun Mar 12 - Fri Mar 17 (only one spot left)
Sun Apr 2 - Fri Apr 7

Dates filled up very quickly last year.

The Women’s Retreat is filling up quickly. Last year there was a waiting list, so don’t put off sending in your application if you’re interested in joining us. This is a program that many women choose to share with a family member or female friend, though many come alone as well. Either way, it’s a fantastic week! And you learn a lot about how uniquely powerful you are as a woman in the way that ancient cultures understood. We already have a number of people returning after last year’s program. And this year it’s at a beautiful retreat center in Lucerne Valley , CA . We still have 2 half-scholarships available. ( Lighten Up, our retreat focused on health and creating dynamic energy, will be held at this same retreat center in June). You can check out the retreat center photos on the website from either of these program pages.

Dates of Allyson’s upcoming Kundalini Yoga and Gong Meditation workshops at Yoga Desa in Topanga , CA are: Saturday, Jan 28th

And then in mid-March (check website for finalized date).

Land Needed! Hidden Creek Ranch, where our Idaho Vision Quest has been held for years, has been sold to a corporate group, and we will no longer be able to run our Quests there. If you know of some land in the Idaho or Washington or Oregon area where we might be able to run our 2006 May Vision Quest, let us know!


We want to support organizations out there who are working for the uplifting of humanity. If you know of web sites that are doing really good work in the world, email them to us for possible inclusion in a future newsletter. We’d like to help get the word out.

To join the campaign to require the labeling of genetically modified foods (GMO’s), so that we can have an informed choice when it comes to what we decide to put into our bodies, check out for some action steps.

The images we choose to put into our heads stay there, even if they’ve “gone underground” and work at a subconscious level. If you’d like to make an informed choice as a parent as to what you feel is appropriate for your kids (or for yourself), offers a comprehensive list of movies rated in different categories (sexual situations, violence and gore, and language) on a scale of 1-10, with detailed descriptions of every example in that category. It’s a fantastic resource in a world where children and adults alike are bombarded by images of violence and by sexual situations beyond their age-appropriateness.

Check out, a nonpartisan group representing diverse religious and spiritual traditions – Christians, Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Buddhists, Sikhs -- over 70 different faith traditions in all as well as Agnostics and Atheists. They work together in an effort to encourage civic participation, freedom of religion, and diversity, transcending traditional “right/left” arguments in the search for common ground -- allowing spirituality to be a healing and constructive force in society.

Many blessings to you all,

Allyson and Malcolm

Copyright 2007Earth Heart Institute of Vision and Healing and The Total Human All Right Reserved

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