Goodbye, frosty mornings and puffy parkas. Hello, baby animals and blooms! To most of us, spring represents a time of new beginnings and optimism—a time for celebrating fresh, new starts. It’s also a powerful opportunity to recommit to those areas of our life that may have chilled over the bleak days of winter. Here are five ways to do just that:
1. Volunteer Reiki for the baby animals at your local shelter. Baby animals: Need I say more? Who wouldn’t want to spend an afternoon helping (and cuddling) these cuties? The spring season often leaves shelters coping with an overflow of kittens and puppies needing adoption. I have seen Reiki boost adoption rates time and again. Helping these kittens calm and find loving homes then opens much-needed space for older dogs and cats that take a bit longer to adopt out. This actually leads right into my next point …
Friday is St. Patrick’s Day—a fun day that always reminds me of my Irish ancestry. Though I haven’t seen the Emerald Isle yet, I hope one day to visit its famed castles, museums and—of course—its shelters and sanctuaries! Here are four inspiring organizations dedicated to helping make animals’ lives better. This St. Patrick’s Day, consider supporting one of the following (even a small donation helps!):
Eden Farmed Animal Sanctuary
Eden promotes “liberty, equality, veganism.” About 100 rescued farm animals now live in peace at this sanctuary, which started in 2008. In addition to rescuing animals from farms, Eden is committed to spreading the word about veganism; its inspiring Go Vegan World advertising campaign uses billboards and TV ads to challenge people to reconsider their use and acceptance of animal products. See Eden’s beautiful farm and animals here:
Last month, as I do every February, I had the honor of teaching Reiki 3 at The C.A.R.E. Foundation in Apopka, Florida. This beautiful sanctuary is home to more than 200 exotic animals, including bears, monkeys, big cats and even a friendly skunk!
The interesting thing about working with animals (not just the ones at C.A.R.E.) is that even though I am teaching animal Reiki to humans, the animals are truly the ones teaching us. In fact, I’ve come to realize that the special animals at C.A.R.E. perfectly model the five Reiki precepts, as illustrated in the following photo essay:
Wednesday, March 1, was National Pig Day—and whenever I think of pigs, I cannot help but remember Harley, an amazing pig who touched my heart and the hearts of many lucky enough to know him.
Harley was a beautiful, 800-pound black-and-white pig who lived many happy years at BrightHaven sanctuary in Northern California. Five years ago, on July 11, he passed away—and is still sorely missed by me, so many of my students, and everyone who knew him. He was such an amazing soul that I feel the need to write about his life for those of you who didn’t get the opportunity to meet him in person.
This past Sunday, February 5, was our second-annual World Animal Reiki Day—and the day was a massive global success! Thank you to everyone who participated!
One of the ways we celebrated was with our Facebook photo contest of the World’s Most Adorable Reiki Animal. Our winner this year was Odin the hedgehog (pictured above)!! Odin was one of 45 entries this year and received 278 of the 878 votes cast.
Odin’s human is JulieAnn Lee, and she tell us this story about how they came to find each other: