Here’s a wild fellow in a tuxedo truly worth celebrating this Friday: the penguin! January 20 is Penguin Awareness Day, and I plan on doing what I can to honor, protect and spread awareness about how we can help these sweet little seabirds.
They need our help. Penguins worldwide—from Antarctica, Argentina, Australia and Chile to New Zealand, South Africa and the Galapagos Islands—are facing some serious threats, including:
I don’t really do New Year’s resolutions—but a new year does always feel like a fresh start in some ways and an opportunity to check in with my big-picture goals: What do I want to achieve this year? Is there anything in my life I want to do differently? Am I as happy as I can be?
For me, happiness is intrinsically connected to living with purpose and meaning. I work with animals every single day because that adds value to my life. My dog, horses and even the shelter and sanctuary animals I encounter remind me the importance of kindness, of mindfulness, of compassion. And of the goodness in this world (which sometimes feels very hard to find). So with the animals as my guide, here are my five goals for a happier 2017:
I am a Reiki teacher who works with animals. Some might ask me if I’m an “animal healer,” but I don’t like that term: Partly because I respect the wisdom and power of animals too much to claim that I’m the one doing the helping, and partly because of what some amazing cats in my Reiki journey have revealed to me.
For those of you new to Reiki, the word itself literally translates as “spiritual energy,” which points toward our inner self. I see Reiki as our beautiful light of compassion, or our “heart.” Reiki meditation helps us remember that we are all connected, and in that place of Oneness, all healing possibility exists.
The word Reiki can be translated as “true self,” which points towards our inner power of compassion. One of the misunderstandings of the way Reiki works is that we, as practitioners, are somehow “doing” the healing “to” someone else; however, from a traditional viewpoint, Reiki is seen as a path to rediscover our own inner self-healing power, which when practiced, can create a certain radiance of healing around us, from which others can benefit.
Tonight’s New Moon reminds us that times are a changin’. With 2017 almost here, we know that there are so many new beginnings ahead of us. Reiki can help us release those things that hinder us and create a beautiful healing space for new things to enter.
Reiki meditation can help us to become balanced and centered amidst all of the change. Instead of descending into worry about the newness ahead, we can practice Reiki and find our courage again. Instead of being angry at things that are beyond our control, we can practice Reiki and remember all of the things we are grateful for in this moment.