It’s hard to imagine Nicole sheathed in latex. At just under 200 pounds, make-up free, with a big, friendly smile, she looks like the perfect suburban neighbour, the kind you’d trust with the keys to your house because you can rely on her to feed your cat when you’re away. Because her appearance is a world away from the slim, glossy-lipped women who populate YouTube when you type “Dominatrix” into the search engine, it’s hard to imagine her as the latex-clad, crop toting Domme she was for nearly ten of her thirty years. Read More Here: Whips and Stilettos
Every year or two I get a cold which turns into a cough which turns into bronchitis. Until it hurts to breathe, I don’t pay much attention to my breathing on a day to day basis. Same is true for most people … Unless it affects our quality of life, we take breathing for granted. Yet we do it– inhale and exhale—20,000 or so times a day. I found that figure astonishing when I first read about it. Is there anything else we do that frequently, ever? …Approximately 70 percent of our body’s waste is excreted through our lungs, breathing affects all sorts of physical conditions from Renaud’s disease to blood pressure and breathing expands inner awareness to the point where it becomes a form of psychotherapy. Read more about the power of our breath in The Power of Awareness – A Journey Through Breathing in Sibyl Magazine May edition.
We live in a world where we make judgments every day. We decide when to cross a street and when not to, when to speak to a stranger and when to pass by… This good/bad judgment can keep us safe. But what would it be like if, outside of these essential discernments, we were able to accept what is as it is – not good, not bad, not beautiful, not ugly, not right, not wrong. Most of all, what would life be like if we didn’t judge ourselves quite as much as we normally do.
Read more about Awareness without Judgment in The Power of Awareness – Witnessing Without Judging or in Sibyl Magazine’s March 2016 edition.
Like lots of people, I’ve often discovered bruises on my arms or legs and have no recollection of how they got there. Obviously I’ve bumped into something, bumped hard enough to cause bruising, but have no memory of my encounter with a chair or table or car door. This is a common experience for many of us who walk around so contained in our heads that we don’t notice what our bodies are doing.
Read more about the benefits of body awareness in The Power of Awareness – Body Awareness Sibyl Feb. 2016 or check out Sibyl Magazine for women.
We develop filters through which we see reality from the moment we’re born—some would say from the moment we’re conceived. Like the lenses opticians try out when we go for a sight test, our filters either blur or clarify our view of the world. And like my client, we often grow up unaware that we even have filters. We accept what we see as being an accurate assessment of the way things are and we action based on those assessments. Our precious lives are shaped by those actions. Being able to stand back and recognize that we’re seeing through filters is quite a skill, the skill of Awareness.
Read more about how to see life more clearly in The Power of Awareness – Liberate Your Inner Witness published in Sibyl Magazine
This year Mary Quinalty sold her home in an upmarket neighborhood of Albuquerque, New Mexico, gave away almost everything she owned, and moved into Trinity House, a Catholic Worker “house of hospitality” for people who are homeless in Albuquerque’s impoverished South Valley. Her new job as the administrator of Trinity House is full-time and unpaid. Mary Quinalty is eighty-one years old. I asked Mary what inspired her to give away her possessions and swap a comfortable home for a run-down building with a dodgy roof that she shares with and ever-changing set of housemates.
Read Mary’s inspiring story 0f how spiritual beliefs drive her passion for social justice: Innocence, Awakening and Social Justice – How One Woman Tansformed Her Piece of the World.docx in Oneing: An Alternative Orthodoxy ,a publication of the Center for Action and Contemplation.
I find it difficult to recall a family Christmas without some sort of conflict. I’ve spent Christmas with several different families from my own nuclear two parents, three kids family of origin to extended families of unrelated adults. At some point, somebody gets upset, testy or outright angry. It’s a common experience. One of my friends decided that staying at home alone on Christmas day was easier…For many years he spent the holiday in his own house, alone, phone turned off. But does it have to be this way?
Read more about how the power of acceptance can turn Christmas into a time of peace and joy for all the family in Creating a Peaceful Holiday Season Sibyl Magazine December 2015. Read the December edition of Sibyl Magazine here.
Two of the most powerful and effective tools of healing are the ones the client brings to the therapy session themselves: their body and their breath…Two modalities that put the body or the breath as an equal partner with the emotions and the mind are Sensorimotor Psychotherapy and Rebirthing Psychotherapy (breathwork). Read about how body awareness and breathing can transform therapy sessions and help people move through difficulties quickly and safely. Body and Breath: Two Gateways to Healing by Catherine Dowling and Brenda Doherty in Inside Out, the journal of the Irish Association for Humanistic and Integrative Psychotherapy.
Life seems exceptionally good to some people. Their lives soar on a tide of apparently endless luck. Those of us who belong to the ‘glass half-empty’ crowd can look on with everything from amazement to jealousy. Yet, in my experience, those ‘lucky’ people have ways of creating their own luck through by being open to the opportunities life presents to all of us, but we don’t always see or embrace. Read more about The Power of Acceptance – Relishing the Good Times in the November issue of Sibyl Magazine.
In our western society we grow up pushing pain away. We distance ourselves from pain through legal and illegal drugs, shopping, eating or not eating, caretaking, blame and even obsessively positive thinking. The list is endless. But every spiritual and wisdom tradition tells us that the dark times can be the most fertile periods of growth, the incubators of new life. Almost every day life throws up growth opportunities disguised as something we’d rather do without. Read more at Growing from Suffering – Sibyl Magazine October 2015 or at Sibyl Magazine.
Throughout her school years, Catherine, an avid reader, wrote many books –all of them in her imagination. Read More.
- Whips and Stilettos: One Woman’s Path to Body Confidence July 8, 2020
- The Power of Awareness: A Journey Through Breathing May 14, 2016
- The Power of Awareness: Witnessing Without Judging March 24, 2016