The holiday period is bittersweet for many. While for
some, there is personal meaning, ritual and
celebration at this time of year, for others it is a very
sad, empty and even lonely time. If the holidays bring
a reunion of loved ones and special friends, they can
be joyful. If the holidays mirror losses, disconnections
and isolation at a time that is "supposed to be
celebratory," they are painful.
The media culture makes the holiday season larger than
life, which can increase feelings of alienation. Finding a
way to be of service to others can add special meaning,
and serve as an antidote to the media blitz.
I do find the practice of taking time to be thankful for
the good things in my life a valuable one. And even
when I am grieving losses, it is still important to be
thankful for what I've got.
In this special Thanksgiving issue, I wanted to share
with you some inspirational words I have gathered,
including a poem written by a Somalian woman I had
the privilege of having in my Fall semester class at
UMass Boston. Safia, has lived through more trauma
than most U.S. trauma survivors can even imagine,
both in Somalia, and in the United States. Yet, her
faith remains strong, her heart remains pure, and her
spirit keeps leading her to be the best she can be.
I hope to see many of you at the Holiday Party
on December 6.
In the meantime, Happy Thanksgiving!
Your comments and feedback are always welcome!
Words For the Heart. From the Heart
"And when you get down to it...that's the only purpose
grand enough for a human life, not just to love--but to
persist in love."
-- Sue Monk Kidd, from The Secret Life of Bees
"Personal mastery means approaching one's life as a
creative work, living life from a creative as opposed to
"Personal mastery is not something you possess. It is
a process. It is a lifelong discipline. People with a
high level of personal mastery are acutely aware of
their ignorance, their incompetence, their growth
areas. Paradoxical? Only for those who do not see
that 'the journey is the reward.'"
-- Peter Senge
"The purpose of life is to live it, to taste experience to the
utmost, to reach out eagerly and without fear for newer
and richer experience."
-- Eleanor Roosevelt
"When you see the world through the eyes of love....of
compassion...you realize there are no strangers in the
world....only people who need LOVE."
"Everything begins and ends with love."
"Gandhi said BE the change you want to see in the
world. You must first become the love that you wish to
see in the world."
"The cure for all the ills and wrongs, the cares, the
sorrows and the crimes of humanity all lie in one word:
LOVE. It is the divine vitality that everywhere
produces and restores life."
"Love is the master key that opens the gates of
happiness," says Oliver Wendell Holmes.
-- Nick Ralls
Please share your thoughts...
Dream to Be the Best You Can Be
by Safia Abdinur Mohamed
I was my mother's 9th child, and I lived in a rural area in
the East Africa countryside. We did not have schools,
colleges, universities, hospitals, technologies, or
chemicals. We had inherited love, pride, and dignity.
That was the life we enjoyed. We were so happy,
anything we didn't know, it was like it never existed.
When I was four years old, I was lost for a month. I was in
the jungle. There were only wild animals and me, too
little to understand the death; that made me stress free.
Moon was the only light in the jungle; only, few nights
had full moon. I was drinking from the rain, also eating
the naturally growing seeds.
I was only four years old, but I had to manage to survive
and lived. I was sleeping on rough, hard soil. I was
securing my shoes, using them as pillows, before sleep.
All I had were my shoes and dress; I could not take steps
without the shoes. That year, there were 8 children who
had gotten lost; I was the only found.
The other 7 children were eaten by lions, even, 3 of them
were siblings. Lions or hyenas were not the only risk in
the jungle. Reptiles were another danger during the
night. There were small mountains, made by termite.
They had soft flat ends. Average mound has 15 - 25
holes, and every hole was the home of a reptile family.
Every spot of the jungle was covered by stones, rocks,
and mountains. Because of the mountains' flat end, I was
sharing space with the reptiles. God saves who he
wants. American says, "What you don't know can hurt
you," but in my case, it helps me that I did not know the
risk, but I still dreamt to be the best I could be.
My family moved to the small town. I was 6, but I
enrolled school myself. Enrollment system was easy.
Our town only had elementary school, middle school
and very limited facilities. Best student of every class
was the head of the class. I was the head of my class.
Because I was the best student, That was why I
dreamt to be the best I can be.
Before I finished the school, war had hit our town; we
moved to bigger and safer city. I never let my dream
die before me. For limited resources, I could not enroll
in the university. I started private schools to learn
English and Computer, that was all I could have done.
We didn't have private universities and colleges, but
still I dreamt to be the best I can be.
Our government collapsed in January 1991. I had
been displaced, still in my homeland. I remember
night we had slept on the street. It was not a good,
safe place, but we enjoyed. Night before that we had
slept on unsafe cargo and that made street feel like
clean lodging. I escaped to another country, alone. I
stayed with non-blood related family.
I secretly did housework for food and place to sleep; it
was embarrassing to live in that condition. It was the
only way I could save my family and female dignity.
Many girls were in the same situation. Some of them
gave up their purity, safety and values for food or a
place to sleep. December 1990 my family had a maid,
but March 1991 living like a maid saved my dignity.
Living with family gave me security, and that helped
me to be a pure girl. Being modest, and pure gave me
high self-esteem. I was hapy, that I didn't sold my
body to sleep lodging. I was a worker with neither
contract nor wages. I lived in that situation and for my
Immigration Status, I had to choose between refugee
camp and deportation.
I was in the camp, waiting hours to be called to eat. I
stood long line for the bathroom. I never felt hopeless.
I came to America as refugee; I felt like I came to
another planet. Everything I had seen made me
shocked. I could not get job for my Islamic dress.
Other reasons were my English, or maybe not
knowing the best job search methods.
Stereotype is a big challenge, but it did not block
my dream to be the best. I had a terrible car
accident with my friend. We were in coma. Doctors
could not find our identifications. We were in the
hospital a week, before anyone heard about the news.
Our friends assumed that we went on vacation; I was
in coma over a month.
Neither of us had families in USA. No one took time to
find where we were. My car accident was very bad. I
had brain injury. Doctor said, my chance of suriviving
was 1%. Even that 1% was being paralyzed. God could
create something out of 0%. America saved my life.
That time I could not have dream; I was in coma.
I lost some of my memories including driving. Even I
forget that I was in America. I was born in Islam. I
have been performing my daily prayer 5 times a day
since I was 8 years old. That car accident made me
forget how to pray. I couldn't even remember about
the car crash. But I did not forget my dream to be
the best I can be.
Why do I dream all the time? I had dream, because I
knew my internal ability. I dreamt, because I was
happy being who I am. I believe God is my
unchangeable internal power. Now I am in the land of
opportunity. I have more than one dream. I am the
best I can be: I am mother, wife, student, I am
community volunteer, employee, all I can be.
I am feeling good, but I am dreaming to be better than
good. I am dreaming because I am a positive thinker.
don't focus other's people's belongings. I do not
myself with the others, because I am special and
I do only count what I have; it makes me feel good and
give me courage.
Daily advice for dreaming and working for the best
one could be
Your internal power is yours alone. You are the only
one who has control over that power. Others may
have inspired you doing something. Remember, the
final decision of your life is yours. Understand your
power and limitations. Be positive thinker. Use your
past experience to improve your present condition.
Improve your present condition to form better future.
Prepare and work for better. Don't underestimate
power of your experience to feel proud of yourself,
even if it's unpleasant one use it to avoid repetition.
Then dream and plan to be the best.
Blame yourself before you blame others. Do not
blame yourself to feel guilty, because it could lead you
commit crime. Challenge yourself before you try to
change others. Count your actions before you count
others' actions. Challenge yourself more than you
challenge with the others. Take credit of examining
yourself; it will help you grow. Use all your power
before you ask help. Then plan and dream the
©2005 Safia Abdinur Mohamed
Share your thoughts on this article...
When Dreams Suffer
A Song I Wrote When I Was 20 Years Old
In our lives, none can escape obstacles, worries
and fears. They can consume, they can deter and
they can compromise our lives.
Holding on, yet letting go, trusting that time will fulfill,
our truest needs, our deepest dreams, will keep us on
When dreams suffer there must be fear in their way.
So, close your eyes until you realize your dreams, in
time, guide your way.
Giving space, believing while nothing supports your
beliefs may test your faith, but in time will bring your
dreams in full to you.
When dreams suffer, there must be fear in their way.
So, close your eyes until you realize your dreams, in
time guide your way.
The road's been long for you and I, each with our
lessons to learn. But in my heart, I've always had faith
in myself, in time and faith in you.
And when my dreams suffered, my worries and fears
let me stray. I gave them faith and worked a long my
path, and now, perhaps, my dreams can guide my
©1978 Linda Marks
December 6, is the next Healing the
Traumatized Heart Workshop, from 1 - 5 pm in
Newton. Join us for an afternoon of heartful healing
The EKP Community Holiday Party is on
Saturday, December 6 from 6 - 8:30 pm. Bring a
contribution to a potluck dinner, and any favorite music
musical instruments. Friends and loved ones are
welcome. RSVP to LSMHEART@aol.com, so we
who is coming.
Linda will be leading Embracing the Power of the
Heart, a weekend retreat at Rowe Camp and
Conference Center in Rowe, MA the weekend of
January 9 - 11. Rowe is the most warm and
welcoming place to go for a workshop! We hope you
can join us! Register Online at www.rowecenter.org.
On Saturday, January 24, Dan Cohen and Linda
Marks will be leading Healing the Traumatized
Integenerational Heart. This workshop integrates
Hellinger Family Constellations work with EKP to
provide an incredibly powerful opportunity to heal
integenerational enegy doing soul work and oversoul
EKP Apprenticeship Training will begin in
January 2009. The apprentice
group meets one weekend a month. The program
four year cycle. The first two years focus
skills and concepts of EKP with ones peers,
the very popular second year study of
developmental psychology. The second two
clinical years, where apprentices get to work
guest clients in our student clinic. If you
in apprenticing, contact LSMHEART@aol.com. An
interview and one EKP session are required to
to the first year apprenticeship training group.
Sunday, March 1 Linda will be leading
Body Psychotherapy and the Heart for Health
Professionals at the New England School for
EKP opportunities in Newton include:
- Being a guest client in the Student Clinic
- On-going Thursday night EKP Body
Psychotherapy Group (which currently has room
couple new members)
- On-going Sunday EKP Monthly Process
Group (which also has room for a couple new
If you would like a Healing the
workshop near you, or have a group of people
who you would like to bring EKP to, please
To find out more....