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Why I became a foster parent

Why I became a foster parent

A gift I gave myself that keeps on giving: Opening our home and souls to our foster children

BY RICK LEED — Everyone understands the concept of ‘giving’ to a child in need by opening your home as a foster parent and potentially (though not necessarily) proceeding to adopt that child. The most common and simplest way to view this metamorphosis is that you are doing good by helping someone else — by sharing your safe, warm personal, family home with a child who might otherwise live in a ‘group home’ (the word that has replaced the word Dickens made famous, “orphanage”) .

It is true: you are doing good by helping another.  But the good you are doing is hardly one-sided.  There are many studies, much research, and a long social and spiritual history that shows that the biggest beneficiary is the giver of this gift.

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How to raise a “Dakota Fanning”

A child psychologist and mother of seven uses a method called, “show, remind and tell” to raise an ‘indigo child’

BY DR. CHRISTINE JAX-CASTILLO — If you are a parent, you probably question if you are making all the right moves to ensure that your children find their own spiritual paths, and reach their full potential.  You wonder how you can help your children to follow their soul’s code, while encouraging them to follow your rules.

How can you can teach them right from wrong, while teaching them to see the good in all things?  How can you keep them safe in a country where congresswomen and movie-goers are shot at malls, while relaying to them that fear is an illusion of the ego?

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Why ABC’s “reality show” The Bachelor is so un-real

Why ABC’s “reality show” The Bachelor is so un-real


Dating in America — an analysis of our collective consciousness from a couples counselor

BY DAVID RICKEY — As the 2010 season of The Bachelor nears its March 1 finale, curiosity about what Americans think dating is really about got the best of me. I am a psychotherapist and spiritual teacher, and hardly an avid watcher of Reality TV, so this posed a bit of a challenge.

My personal routine is getting up at about 5 a.m, and meditating. My day is then an exploration. I seek to heal, contemplate texts in preparation for sermons, which are a form of teaching, and generally try to stay aware.

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What do men really want from a woman?

What do men really want from a woman?

Truths my father told me: what men love in women are the same qualities that they seek in themselves

BY MICA AKULLIAN — I was blessed with a father who taught me that a man is what you make him.

My father was the kind of guy who cried when he was in pain, spoke out when he was feeling sad or angry, danced like a pink flamingo in a room full of metaphorical seagulls, and loved unabashedly all those things which moved his heart.

For my father, answering the call of what people in spiritual circles call ‘the divine feminine’ took all his courage — and rendered making meaningful friendships with other Baby Boomer men in the suburbs of central California distinctly difficult.  He found himself searching for water in a parched desert, and while his life was cut too short (he died before his time at 45), he passed a proverbial torch to me.

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How Oprah fixed my mom

How Oprah fixed my mom

Is it possible that the TV icon somehow succeeded where God and psychotherapy had failed?

BY TIPPI STRACHAN — I don’t watch Oprah. I have no real justification for this, but whether it’s her mega-sprayed hair or the adoring throngs of “go-girl” women in her audience, the show brings a lump of bile in my gut.

How do I know? It’s always on whenever I visit my mom. The same mom who raised us to watch minimal TV now quotes Oprah like the Bible, and brings her up in every conversation. But I put up with this because — and I genuinely believe it to be true — Oprah fixed my mom.

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How Sacred Contracts author Caroline Myss guided a Soul’s Code reader

How Sacred Contracts author Caroline Myss guided a Soul’s Code reader

“Before she was famous, a mystical neighbor changed my life”

BY ELLEN FENNER — We all have a moment we can look back on and see divine intervention that we didn’t necessarily recognize at the time. For me it was the day an angel (see photo) sat me down at her kitchen table and fed my starving soul.

In the spring of 1984, I returned home from my second year at college completely dejected. I had lost control of everything I’d ever imagined myself to have any control over. When I decided not to go back the next year, I gave up a full-tuition scholarship and set myself adrift.

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Marrying a Muslim man in post-9/11 North America

Islam means “submit.” I’ve used the code of my adopted faith to accept, and turn, public opinion

GUEST COLUMN: REBECCA JONES *— When I met my husband, then-roommate, he was living in the basement of our shared student apartment. We became friends simulating Star Wars battles with toy light sabers and fell for each other watching a Ghostbusters marathon. Sheltered from the world, we seemed to have more similarities than differences.

To be quite honest, it still sits strangely when I hear people say I married a “Muslim man.” I feel like I fell in love with a boy who happened to be Muslim. That was almost 10 years ago.

But just because I fell in love, didn’t mean I fell in love with his faith.

* Rebecca Jones is a pen name requested by the author to protect her family from any potential backlash.

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Barack Obama, the secret Good Samaritan

Flying to Norway to start a new life, Mary Anderson got a helping hand from a stranger: Barack Obama. In her own words . . .

For Barack Obama’s inauguration we call your attention to a little-publicized event in 1988, after the future president left his gig as a community organizer in Chicago and enrolled in Harvard Law School. The unknown Obama delivered a random act of kindness to a complete stranger at a baggage check-in line at Miami’s international airport.

The recipient: a former California girl named Mary Menth Andersen (left, with her husband, holding a letter from Obama). This story first came to light a month before the 2008 U. S. presidential election in Norway’s national newspaper, VG.

It was verified to Soul’s Code by H. Dagfinn Kvale, a long-time Lutheran pastor who knows Andersen.

Click here to read the remarkable back-story of Mary Andersen’s encounter with Barack Obama. In this special to Soul’s Code, Mary celebrates the against-all-odds inauguration of her Good Samaritan from 21 years ago:

GUEST COLUMN: MARY ANDERSEN — On the eve of Barack Obama’s inauguration, as domino arrays of disasters sit on our doorstep, I find myself strangely confident. Can a small act of individual kindness, so long ago, still compel this spirited optimism I feel for everyone?

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My divorce? A scary rebound relationship? Call them my “secret projects” for healing

CONFESSIONS: “When my little brother said I was like a T-shirt for women who shack up with abusers, I knew I had hit rock bottom”

ANONYMOUS — Sometimes I feel fondly — even grateful — for hitting what I consider rock bottom . . . so long as I never have to visit there again.

If there’s a contest between life’s ups and downs, ups are in. Some people pop pills to stay up.

Up is nothing to sneeze at, certainly, but I also believe that down is a place where you can do some foundation work for a personal renovation.

My downward journey started . . .

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Confessions of a billionaire: Shari Arison reveals why money can’t buy It

The Carnival Cruise Lines heiress and richest woman in Israel comes to terms with her wealth, her father and her faith

Shari Arison

SPECIAL TO SOUL’S CODE: SHARI ARISON, excerpted from BIRTH

— In my decades of seeking inner peace, I have become increasingly aware of the fierce battle raging within me — between sadness and happiness, between acceptance and frustration, between praise and envy, between strength and lack of confidence, between the adult and the child. I have recognized the evil inclination within me. The dark side. The closer we get to our inner essence, to the divine spark that resides in every human being, the closer we get to the basis of the evil within us.

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