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Arnold Schwarzenegger and the unbearable lateness of monogamy

An up-close and personal account of infidelity from a Soul’s Code contributor goes deeper than the public contritions of governors, celebrities and other cheaters

BY CASSANDRA KELLY — Sometimes, to amuse myself, I think about the parallels between my life and the lives of those that our society has deemed “famous” or “stars.” For instance, I grew up in poverty — so did Gloria Estefan.  I’m a pilates lover and so is Jen Anniston.

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The new improved way to get stoned

The new improved way to get stoned

Hint: It isn’t meth. Simply holding a few colored gemstones healed my mind, body and spirit. Crystals rock!

BY SUSANNA BELLINI — I once met a woman, a former geologist who after years of handling stones eventually discovered they held energetic and spiritual properties. She left geology to become a healer.

Years later, at a very low point in my life where I struggled in an unhappy relationship and was about to lose a big freelance IT contract, that woman—and my own experience with her healing stones—kept coming to mind.

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Lot_and_his_Daughters

A brief history of my post-childhood sex life

“I had flings with over-sexed football players, a boss at a TV station — and now see them as fallout from sexual abuse in my Catholic home”

Lot and his daughters: a Baroque depiction of Genesis-19

MARINA GIULLIANI (Read part 1 , 2 and 3 of this Soul’s Code excerpt from the book, Sins of my Faith) Being sexually-pleasured as a young child meant I was always very uncomfortable in situations where using my sexuality to get my own way was not an option.

The thought of heading to a segregated Catholic high school was pure torment.

My sister Angela had chosen the school a year earlier, and I was stuck with it. Now four to five years of nothing but girls and nuns loomed ahead of me. I was completely disillusioned by all things Catholic, and I hated the boxed-in feeling of girly stuff.

In high school I’d soon be totally engulfed by both.

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A West Coast lawyer’s first-person account of race and reconciliation

A West Coast lawyer’s first-person account of race and reconciliation

Childhood friends, then ‘tribal’ enemies, come to terms with a history of violence

In 1960, a few months before a life lesson

BY DANIEL D. WOO — In 1960 when I was in 7th grade, a bunch of kids started the “Boo for Woo” club.  I was furious.

Our family moved to the United States in 1953 when I spoke only Mandarin Chinese and not a word of English.  The Geary Act extended the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act until 1943 when the laws were amended allowing up to 105 Chinese immigrants a year.

We came into the US as political refugees and became citizens in 1963 under a special bill passed in Congress. It wasn’t until The Immigration Act of 1965 that the immigration laws were reformed allowing Chinese and other Asians to come into the United States in large numbers.

Our family wound up in a neighborhood in San Jose where there were almost no other Asians, a small number of blacks, and a few Hispanics.  The majority were predominantly white Protestants, and at my school there were also Catholics and Jews.

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On relationships: need versus fidelity

On relationships: need versus fidelity

If trust is about truth, no wonder we find it more difficult to look into each other’s eyes than to have sex together

BY DAVID RICKEY – In Woody Allen’s latest film of dysfunction, You Will Meet A Tall Dark Stranger, Gemma Jones’ character says, “My husband walked out on me for one simple reason. I was too honest with him. I refused to allow him to delude himself.”

Truth, lies, seeing, blindfolding . . . having too much of one, and too little of the other, can tip the scales in a relationship, destroying trust.

Trust is really a question of energy flow.

When I truly love you, my energy flows positively out toward you. When I trust you, I believe that your energy will flow positively toward me.

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Serenity in a blizzard

Serenity in a blizzard

How I survived a near-death road trip with my hillbilly Zen Master

BY AUGUST TURAK – I was 21 years old. And for the first and only time in my life, I was sure I was about to die. I was in the passenger seat of my 1963 day-glo green Ford Econoline van with a bubble-shaped skylight on the roof and a madman behind the wheel – a West Virginia hillbilly who happened to be my Zen Master. We had been on our way out West when he’d gotten news that his son was in trouble back in Wheeling, and now he was barreling home with me in tow to do what he could.

The trip had started out two days before on an almost comical note. On a cold dark morning at 5:30, his usual starting time, I was coming up his front steps to pick him up. My van was parked across the street and according to his careful instructions, was full of enough tools, extra tires, and spare parts to rebuild it on the fly if necessary. And because of the Arab oil embargo that year, it was stocked with fifteen gallons of spare gasoline in three five-gallon cans.

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The Ice Storm still

Living in fear: We appeared to be the perfect family

My mother’s first hospitalization for attempting suicide came before I even knew what the word meant

BY SUEANN JACKSON-LAND — I can close my eyes and see myself at around 8 or 9 years old, sitting with my knees scrunched under me on the floorboard of a 1974 Dodge Coronet. The first poem I wrote was a prayer. Rounding the corner in that same old big brown boat that disguised its ugliness as a car, I can also clearly remember hanging on to the interior door handle as the door swung open and I looked at the pavement racing past me.

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10 things that make a workout spiritual

10 things that make a workout spiritual

A real hockey mom shares her search for exercise that tunes her body and soul.

BY MICHELLE MORRA-CARLISLE I am not tough. If a gang of men with sticks repeatedly pelted me with a rock-hard projectile you might find me on the ground in the fetal position, pleading with them to stop.

What I actually mean by that is that, unlike Sarah Palin, I am a real hockey mom. I live in Canada. And when I first saw my husband play goal and assume the iconic, fearless “bring it on” stance, I was in awe. As well-rounded as I consider myself to be, in that moment I saw that in my non-athletic development I had missed out on something important.

The fittest of the fit are sublimely aware that for the mind to be in optimal shape, so must the body, and vice versa.

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The King’s Speech? We analyze the King’s pain

The King’s Speech? We analyze the King’s pain

Loving someone hurts when we can’t slay their monsters. The King’s Speech is about coming through the worst of it alone.

BY MICHELLE MORRA-CARLISLE – Movies want audiences to sympathize for their characters, and I usually oblige. My heart sank right along with Leonardo DiCaprio in the Titanic. I ached for Jamie Foxx as his character battled schizophrenia and homelessness in The Soloist. I even mustered some emotion for Angelina Jolie as she screeched about her stolen son in The Changeling. Pretty heavy subject matter compared to public speaking – yet I have never felt such agony for a character as I did for Colin Firth in The King’s Speech.

The actor reportedly had a similar response when he watched a newsreel of the real King George VI stammering through a speech. Though the King did a good job of making his stutters sound like dramatic pauses, his obvious struggle brought tears to the eyes of Firth and director Tom Hooper.

This isn’t a story about someone being mocked for his impediment. The King had support. The British masses in stadiums and in their livingrooms sat with bated breath, respectfully rooting for the King. Yet all of their collective good will and that of his loving wife and daughters could not help His Majesty get those words out smoothly and painlessly. For me, it’s a story of not only the King but those who loved him.

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Humbug to Dickens

Humbug to Dickens

Multiple divorces don’t doom everyone to Britneyhood. At Christmas time broken homes, too, can be merry.

BY MICHELLE MORRA-CARLISLE – I wonder how many people feel cheated every Christmas because there is no fluffy snow outside, no cozy fireplace and no Tiny Tim. I must confess that I was down on my own family for years. If ‘A Christmas Carol’ had starred us, Tim and his siblings would have lived with Mrs. Cratchet and only visited Mr. Cratchit on weekends.

This is by no means a sob story. I am, in fact, about to brag about the Christmas I’m about to spend with my mother, husband, sister, stepsister, half-brother and his girlfriend, stepfather and stepfather’s first wife (stepsister’s mother). As my sister puts it, “all three of our parents are twice divorced.” Yet I challenge any nuclear family out there to have a more fun, more loving time than we will have.

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