Daring to Land

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin is widely quoted as having said, “We are not human beings having a spiritual experience; we are spiritual beings having a human experience.” But so many fear truly committing to life. It is as if they are hovering slightly above the earth, afraid to touch down and make contact with the soil. So, they keep themselves distanced from real life with Kardashian gossip, tempests in teapots, and other illusions. It takes the courage of an astronaut to embark on the adventure of life. Make a friend, fall in love, birth a baby, plant a garden. Breathe all the way out and all the way in. Develop your wildest, weirdest talents. Look in the mirror and behold the beauty that you are. Look outside your helmet and see it in your neighbor. Life is a privilege. Your most eloquent way of saying “thank you” is to live it.

via GIPHY

 

Planning Your Halloween Wedding Ceremony

wedding costume halloween hat

I’m the grandmother of a little three year old boy, and I’ll want to be with my family on Halloween, but (as of this writing, anyway) I still have the weekend before Halloween open for wedding bookings. Friday Oct 28, 2016 Saturday, Oct 29, 2016 and Sunday, Oct 30 2016 are all available! I’d love to work with you to help you make your theme and/or costume wedding wonderfully fun!

photo by Drumzandspace Photographyphoto by Drumzandspace Photography

Life is the Gift

c Kanta Bosniak

c Kanta Bosniak

Thank you so much to all who have sent birthday greetings. I feel grateful to be alive and to be so blessed with family, friends, and a crazy sweet wardrobe. :-) The older I get, the sweeter I find each moment and the more I want to use it well and and wisely.  My birthday wish is for all people everywhere to feel honored, supported, loved, and renewed each day, knowing that just as life is a gift to them, they are a gift to life.

Attached is my 2006 self-portrait with 2016 embellishments.

Happy Summer!

c Kanta Bosniak

c Kanta Bosniak

With Summer Solstice, we get to celebrate the start of summer. This year the Solstice kissed the Strawberry Moon, so named by Algonquins because it occurs at strawberry harvest time. It’s unusual for the full moon to coincide with the Solstice. It happened in 1967, and it will next happen in 2062. Here’s wishing you an unusually juicy and sweet summer!

And to all of the couples whose weddings I will be officiating this summer, I wish you a lovely time enjoying your engagement and look forward to being part of your special day!

“Love is the Answer”

As I was looking at some photos from a Ringo Starr concert some friends recently attended. I noticed iconic singer/songwriter and producer Todd Rundgren on stage in one of the photos. I’ve been a fan since my college days. Met him once. He was buds with Dennis, my upstairs neighbor during sophomore year. We share the same birthday and grew up in the same city. But despite these random and tenuous connections, the same thing that connects him to me connects him to you, you and me to each other, and to everyone else on this orb. We are all human beings. Our human connection may seem random and tenuous, but it is anything but. We all have the capacity for love. Without love, we are without a home. Without love, we cannot be heard. Without love, we are prisoners of our basest emotions.

“Hello, It’s Me,” I Saw the Light,” “Can We Still Be Friends,” I admire Mr. Rundgren’s work so much. But this is the one that seems most relevant now.

“Love is the Answer” by Todd Rundgren

Name your price a ticket to paradise
I can’t stay here any more and I’ve looked high and low
I’ve been from shore, to shore, to shore
If there’s a short cut I’d have found it but there is no easy way around it
Light of the world, shine on me
Love is the answer, shine on us all
Set us free, love is the answer
Who knows why someday we all must die
We’re all homeless boys and girls and we are never heard
It’s such a lonely, lonely, lonely world
People turn their heads and walk on by
Tell me is it worth just another try
Light of the world, shine on me
Love is the answer, shine on us all
Set us free, love is the answer
Tell me, are we alive
Or just a dying planet
(What are the chances)
Ask the man in your heart
For the answer
And when you feel afraid
Love one one another
When you’ve lost your way, love one another
When you’re all alone, love one another
When you’re far from home, love one another
When you’re down and out, love one another
All your hopes run out, love one another
When you need a friend, love one another
When you’re near the end, love one another
We got to love one another

Light of the world, you got to shine
Love will be a means, yeah, yeah
Shine on us all
Know that love can save the day
Just give it one more chance
Lord you just cant let it stop lord
Love is the answer
Got to be free to let love into your life
Let it shine

What I Learned From Dance Training

I have learned some of my most helpful lessons from dance training. From my earliest ballet classes in NYC at 5 years old, I learned that respect for the learner is important. if the teacher is cold, without affect, or humanity, I’m not interested. Made me a better learner and a better teacher to be aware of this. Respect must be in the equation.

From ballet classes as a young kid and young teen, I learned one-pointed focus. The way to keep yourself from losing your balance or becoming dizzy as you do spins across the floor is to pivot your head and keep your eyes on one specific spot with each turn.

When my life gets busy or I’m going through lots of change, I turn to the spiritual principles that what I know to be true from intuition, experience, and practical application. That’s my “spot.”

In my mid and later teen years, I wanted to explore another facet of dance and gave up my toe shoes in favor of bare feet fully connected to the floor. From modern dance, I learned to express my inner passion and energy. As the terribly shy person I was back then, this was not an easy or quick process. But I stuck with it, because I knew it was good or me and it was working. Getting right down to the real nitty gritty of expressive movement helped me find my fire. That and the music. I listened to Philadelphia R & B radio stations WHAT and WDAS, Brazilian jazz, Debussy, and Ravel. The music itself teaches us the rest of the way, where words cannot go.

“I hope you dance.”

30 Seconds

A judge just sentenced a Stanford University star athlete–who was caught in the act of sexually assaulting an unconscious woman–to only six months in jail. The rapist’s father lobbied for a light sentence because his son’s crime involved only “20 minutes of action.” Since when do sentences relate to how long it takes to commit a crime? I’d venture a guess that most mass murders in schools, universities, fast food restaurants, and government buildings take only a few awful seconds to actually commit. I wonder how long it took the judge, who had been a Stanford student athlete to pass the sentence?

Perpetrator, judge, and bike-riding interveners were like anyone who does a good deed or commits a crime. It takes a mindset. It takes a way of thinking. “I can get away with predation” for the rapist. “Predation is not a real crime” for the judge. “Hey stop that!” for the two grad students who observed the crime being committed and chased down the fleeing rapist. According to the police report, one of these heroes “said it was a very disturbing event for him to witness and be involved in, but he just reacted to the situation at hand without really thinking.” Why? Because he was already on a path of integrity. Patterns are created. Momentum carries these patterns forward.

Each of us takes actions based on the path we are already walking and have been walking choice by choice, until we no longer think about it. The future is only predictable in terms of likelihood based on continuing our present path. But we have the power to change it, because we have freewill. We can change our path by deciding to make a different choice and keep making similar new choices.

This is how character change and soul growth occurs. We stop in our tracks and we start thinking about where our steps have taken us and where, if we keep on making the same unconscious choices, we will end up. This is how smokers stop smoking. How alcoholics stop drinking. How racists wake up from the nightmare they live within. How men who are brought up in misogynistic families of origin and rape culture become fair-minded and considerate men, or even heroes.

Usually, these changes are prompted by the natural and appropriate consequences of our actions. To take away the consequences, or soften them so as to make them inappropriate and an insult to those who have been harmed condones and enables bad behavior. It doesn’t stop the karma bus, it just earns you a ticket for an appointment with that vehicle.

Part of the natural and appropriate consequences for bad behavior is how people in community respond to the public actions of others. How we acknowledge good work and how we repudiate that which causes harm to others. Here is an opportunity to respond that will take you maybe 30 seconds of “action.” http://act.weareultraviolet.org/sign/stanford_judgeperskyrecall/?sp_ref=.39.169697.f.535905.2&source=sp_fbook

Thank you and God bless,

Kanta

Trautes Heim, Glück Allein. Home Sweet Home

Web Ready Certificates Menu

c Kanta Bosniak

A sampling of my “NeoDutchy art!”

c Kanta Bosniak

c Kanta Bosniak

Since my family came to the colonies in the early 1700s from Germany and I knew that Floyd County Virginia was populated about that time with many German immigrants, I was curious.

A little digging showed me that while some German settlers came to the colonies directly from Germany, many came by way of Pennsylvania, where so many German immigrants landed and contributed their arts and culture to the rich mix of early colonial life.

At the time, my Lutheran forefathers and mothers settled in Germantown, PA (a part of what is now the City of Philadelphia) and the counties west of Philadelphia that are known as “Pennsylvania Dutch Country”: Lehigh, Berks, Bucks, Lebanon, and Lancaster Counties, Tourists think of this area’s barn art as Amish. It is not. Amish do not decorate barns. It is the “fancy Dutch,” like my forbears who did (and still do). “Fancy,” that is, because of their penchant for beautifully decorating furniture, homes, and barn exteriors. It is their work that has most influenced my “NeoDutchy” art and design.

Many of these pioneers came down to Floyd and Montgomery Counties and other areas of Southwestern Virginia, bringing their skills of arts, weaving, woodworking, building, and farming, My Dad loved American history and loved Floyd County. We visited these gentle mountains when we lived in Salem when I was a kid and he sometimes he came here on his own as well, to hike and enjoy nature. I think if any of our family members had come down the Shenandoah Trail pre-War of Independence, he would have known it and told me about it in our conversations about the area. But one thing he told me and I can still feel. He is happy that this is where I made my home. I don’t know why this is all so front and center for me today. It’s not his birthday or the anniversary of his passing. But sometimes you can just feel the presence of someone you love and who loves you and this is one of those days.

“My Name is No”

I watched a couple Meghan Trainor songs on YouTube and noticed a plethora of impassioned vile comments by men who were clearly not just meh about her and her music. Their posts revealed the deep rage of people who feel threatened. For a misogynist, women who cannot be controlled by fat shame or the imagined “needs” for approval by a man and relationship at any cost must be terrifying, They provide no avenue for domination and no availability for abuse. All that remains is to become a congressman or senator and try to legislate control of the feminine. Or lacking the means, education, and aptitude for that, to post mean comments on the sites of successful women (who would never date them).

I’m seeing a world where men appreciate confident women, because they themselves feel happy, whole and strong inside. Let’s raise our boys to know they are loved and to know how to love. Love themselves, love others, love life and engage with all of the above with appreciation and respect. And in the meantime, let’s teach our girls that the appropriate response to anything less than respect merits a response of “My name is no. My number is no.”

Birds, Flannel, Rock, Paper, Sandals

That weird feeling you have when an unexpected change occurs and you get shaken up at the earth level but your spirit says, “Relax. All is well.” Listening to birds sing in the pre-light morning. I changed my spring nightgown for comforting flannel so I can enjoy the cool morning air coming through the open window and feel both cozy and free.You breathe out. You breathe in.

Today, I get to officiate a wedding of a couple who in the middle of their ceremony, are going to rock, paper, scissors to determine who goes first in reading his or her special message before the I dos. A perfect demonstration of not needing to know what is next. And they want me to read both the Corinthians “love” passage AND a poem by a Buddhist monk named Wendy. Two unpredictable toddlers are involved and the couple is totally happy with whatever shenanigans and rebellions may occur down the grassy aisle. At the rehearsal the two year old flower girl danced to the Beatles in snazzy silver sandals.

This feeling is reminding me of when I first walked outside after cancer surgery had me housebound and not walking much at all. The feeling of sun, and the intensity of greenness and life force overwhelmed me with gratitude and happiness to be alive. We get so numb and complacent in the the day-to-day sameness of what we think we know and what we are used to doing. Sometimes it takes a bump in the road to awaken us to the beauty of the drive.

I am well now and grateful for all I learned during that time nine years ago, I can only imagine what beauty I will see in this week’s events nine years from now. But I won’t hold my breath, still and waiting, freeze-dried in the illusion of false certainty. You breathe out. You breathe in and you know, there are singing birds who want to be heard, fabric that wants to surround you with softness, and love is all around, calling you to put on your snazziest sandals and dance. Whatever my plans are for myself, there is truly only one thing I know.

The mysterious force we call God can and does improve on those plans and all I have to do is breathe and not be such a knucklehead that I forget to enjoy the moments between the breaths.