Have you heard of The Devoted Barn? This very special animal sanctuary may be less than five years old, but it’s already made a huge impact—saving animals’ lives, helping the community and even winning a prestigious national award (read more about it below). I’m excited because this week (May 5-7) I’ll be teaching Reiki III and Animal Reiki Teacher Training at The Devoted Barn (hope to see you there!). If you’re local but can’t make the class, please join me for a special book talk, signing, meditation and Reiki healing circle this Saturday, May 6, at Crazy Wisdom bookstore in Ann Arbor.
Following are some fun facts about The Devoted Barn, which founder and director Melissa Borden started in 2013 (though she spent more than 20 years prior to that rescuing abused and neglected animals):
These days, with our busy, multitasking lives and so many distractions in the media pulling our attention toward worry, there’s no better time than right now to harness the healing power of Reiki presence in your life.
You’ve probably heard a lot about the calming and balancing power of presence, or “mindfulness,” in the news, but did you know that Reiki meditation can bring us those same benefits? And even better, sharing our meditations with nature and animals can even enhance them!
One of my favorite things about sanctuary animals is their incredible ability to live in the moment. No matter their past, no matter their physical ailments—these special creatures understand innately how to embrace love, mindfulness and spirituality.
I see it time and again when I sit with animals at a sanctuary or shelter and share Reiki. And when I listen close, they have much to teach. In fact, it’s almost as if they want us to learn the ancient wisdom of finding happiness.
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 …
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: