Malas & Miracles

Creating Malas & Miracles Retreat Menla June 15-17th 2018

During this weekend long retreat at the beautiful Menla Retreat & Spa, Satya Scainetti, Founder of Satya Jewelry will lead you through the sacred art of mala making and how malas are used in daily practice to help manifest miracles. Creating a personal mala works to open the heart and serves as a talisman for individual empowerment and well-being. Each attendee will leave the retreat with an intention infused, one-of-a-kind mala that they are encouraged to use for a 40-day meditation.

The mala is a traditional garland of 108 prayer beads. Every bead represents a truth, and meditating on them with an affirmation, or mantra, is used to bring peace of mind. The mala can also be seen as a metaphor for life: a small knot between each of the beads represents a challenge between the smoother, more beautiful aspects of life.

Surrounded by thousands of acres of Catskills forest preserve, Menla is nestled in a magical hidden mountain valley in Phoenicia New York. Throughout the year, guests can enjoy deep serenity and abundant wildlife, explore many different levels of hikes, and take advantage of unique classes and services offering integrative healing -merging Tibetan, Ayurvedic and other holistic traditions. Menla features a conference center, yoga studio, sweat lodge, meditation sanctuary, and the wonderful new Tibetan Dewa Spa & Healing Center specializing in rare and ancient Tibetan therapies.

Menla is affliated with the cultural embassy for Tibet, the Tibet House in NYC, and operated by Robert AF Thurman, Professor of Indo-Tibetan Buddhist Studies at Columbia University as well as co-founder and President of Tibet House. In 2006 The Dalai Lama blessed the land and the stated mission at Menla: to be a place for health, healing and spiritual evolution, based on the wisdom of Tibetan medicine.

Satya Scainetti is the founder and designer of Satya Jewelry. A philanthropist, yoga teacher and Reiki healer, Satya lives a lifestyle dedicated to giving back to the world community. The name Satya, meaning “truth” in Sanskrit, inspires each wearer to their individual truth. With a global following, she creates beautiful, inspiring and meaningful jewelry that resonates with each customer’s own personal journey. Satya’s background in social work and passion for early childhood education sparked the creation of the Satya Foundation, a non-profit organization that provides children all over the world with hope, change and the opportunity to fulfill their destinies.

Earth Day 2018

Earth Day April 22nd 2018 Campaign For Ending Plastic Pollution

Earth Day Network, the organization that leads Earth Day worldwide, announced that Earth Day 2018 will focus on mobilizing the world to end plastic pollution, including creating support for a global effort to eliminate single-use plastics along with global regulation for the disposal of plastics. EDN will educate millions of people about the health and other risks associated with the use and disposal of plastics, including pollution of our oceans, water, and wildlife, and about the growing body of evidence that decomposing plastics are creating serious global problems.

From poisoning and injuring marine life to the ubiquitous presence of plastics in our food to disrupting human hormones and causing major life-threatening diseases, the exponential growth of plastics is threatening our planet’s survival. In response, EDN has built a multi-year End Plastic Pollution Campaign. The goals include ending single-use plastics, promoting alternatives to fossil fuel-based materials, promoting 100 percent recycling of plastics, corporate and government accountability and changing human behavior concerning plastics. As a catalyst for global action the campaign includes four major components:

  • Leading a grassroots movement to support the adoption of a global framework to regulate plastic pollution
  • Educating, mobilizing and activating citizens across the globe to demand that governments and corporations control and clean up plastic pollution
  • Educating people worldwide to take personal responsibility for plastic pollution by choosing to reject, reduce, reuse and recycle plastics
  • Promoting local government regulatory and other efforts to tackle plastic pollution

Be The Change. Take Action. Get Involved. Give To The Cause. Spread The Word. Choose An Option To End Plastic Pollution On Earth Day & Beyond! Here

Wellness RX

Mind Body Spirit RX Wellness Prescriptions. Seven Non-Negociables For Wellness From Yogini Activist Seane Corn.

For yoga teachers and everyone interested in transformational change, Seane Corn -international yoga teacher extraordinaire and co-founder of Off The Mat Into The World, an organization dedicated to bridging yoga & activism, will be at Kripalu -the premiere yoga & health center in the Berkshires, co-teaching with Kerri Kelly founder of CTZNWELL -a movement to mobilize the well-being community into a powerful force for change. Together they offer a valuable program, instrumental in translating the tools of well-being into practical application & social action in the public sector: Teaching Transformational Yoga; Bridging Personal Practice & Collective ChangeMay 4-6th, 2018.

The personal is always political. There is never an instance where we are separate from everyone & everything around us. Our lives are interwoven, and so our practice must allow for the interplay between who we are as individuals and who we are as a collective; between personal healing and transformation (inner work) and collective well-being for all (outer work).

Kerri Kelly Founder of CTZNWELL Explores The Privilege of Well-Being at TEDxBend.

This training is designed for leaders on the front lines of transformational work, including yoga teachers, community leaders, organizers & facilitators, who are ready to take their work to the next level. It is an immersive experience demanding radical healing and truth telling, calling each of us to reach our highest human potential as catalysts for real, long-term change. Using a whole-systems approach, Corn & Kelly will cover the following core components:

  • Teaching: The art of designing a transformational yoga class that bridges the personal & the political
  • Facilitating: Building skills to hold space & cultivate courageous conversation about issues of social justice & liberation
  • Speaking: Finding your voice, connecting the dots & telling your story
  • Expanding: How to decentralize the conversation, spread seeds & ignite the movement

If you only have the time & resources for one life-changing yoga training this year, The Artful Living Blog recommends this one. Note* Seane Corn is a Kripalu visiting yogini rockstar thus this program will sell out quickly.

I’ve Been Thinking

I’ve Been Thinking… Reflections, Prayers, and Meditations for a Meaningful Life by Maria Shriver, 2018.

The Artful Living Blog became an admirer of Maria Shriver over the years through her bestselling books and journalism, recognizing that she was a thoughtful, reflective, honest interpreter of our current world. Also in being a subscriber to The Sunday Paper -a weekly newsletter from her self-described digital home powered by inspiration for people with passion and purpose, where she shares information, reflections, news stories, viewpoints & more. One quickly learns therein that observing the week through Maria’s lens is refreshing, always interesting and optimistic. Inspiring read encouraging hope that we can all be activists in some small way and make a positive difference by becoming “architects of change.”

As a prominent woman juggling many roles, Maria Shriver knows just how surprising, unpredictable, and stressful everyday life can be. In her moving and powerful new book: I’ve Been Thinking, she shares inspiring quotes, prayers & wise reflections designed to get readers thinking, feeling, and laughing, to guide them in their journey to what she calls The Open Field -a place of acceptance, purpose, and passion, a place of joy. I’ve Been Thinking is ideal for anyone at any point on the continuum of life. Whether you feel like you’ve got it all together or like it’s all falling apart, whether you’re taking stock of your life or simply looking to recharge, this is a book you can turn to again and again. The perfect daily companion or weekend pick-me-up, and an exceptional gift for the graduate, or someone looking to move forward in life with hope and grace.

Mantra Sounds

Mantra is an amazing medicine for the mind. ~MC YOGI

Mantra: Sounds Into Silence, A New Documentary Exploring The Music & Social Phenomenon of Chanting & Healing.

Rockstars of kirtan Krishna DasDeva Premal & MitenSnatam KaurJai Uttal & MC YOGI and other beloved kirtan artists appear in the documentary “Mantra: Sounds Into Silence,” making its world premiere at the Rubin Museum of Art NYC, with screenings March 16th-25th, 2018. This film delves into both awareness through music and communal chant as a social phenomenon. Sharing stories of people reconnecting with their true selves through shared experience. 

The Rubin Museum of Art is an arts & cultural hub in New York City’s vibrant Chelsea neighborhood that inspires visitors to make powerful connections between contemporary life and the art, cultures, and ideas of the Himalayas & neighboring regions including India. The Rubin provides immersive & engaging experiences that encourages personal discoveries to spark new ways of seeing the world. With an emphasis on cross-cultural connections, the art therein traverses Asia’s diverse cultures, regions, and narratives. Five gallery floors provide room for looking & learning, while innovative programming, concerts, workshops & conversations inspire dialogue that fosters personal connections with the concepts behind the art on view.

Winter Beauty

Elevate your mood health well-being & aesthetic Winter into Spring with these Artful Living Blog fabulous finds from near and afar. Who couldn’t use a beneficial beauty and beyond boost this time of year? The idea of deep rest, to replenish and renew the body mind spirit & recharge during this at-times-sluggish season is appealing, as is enhancing your beauty routine with nourishing & aromatically rich products, while adding a few essential seasonal pieces to your environment & wardrobe to refresh and organize, Artful Living Blog style. Comfort calm citrine calendula cream chakra curios country couture candles & more.

Magic Organic Apothecary Green Bath Potion & Balm

Fall in love with award-winning, artful artisan Magic Organic Apothecary, skincare products made in England, inspired by old herbal folklore with a sprinkling of magic! Therapeutic green bottled beauties that combine organic Yarrow with other herbal extracts & botanical oils to help nourish & invigorate the body mind spirit to improve well-being. Cult-classics include a multi-purpose beauty balm: The Green Balm, a decadent daily cleansing ritual, and some might say a miracle with all its weird & wonderful uses + healing powers. And a Green Bath Potion with refreshing Peppermint, detoxifying Fennel, relaxing Fir Needle & Birch to ease achy muscles & soften the skin. MOA spell for feeling balanced: Pour capful into the bath. Immerse in water, breathe in & let the natural essential oils clear the mind & lift your mood = magic!

Ursa Major Golden Hour Recovery Cream

Elevate your Winter skincare game with Ursa Major’s Super Natural hydration boost plus fast-absorbing Golden Hour Recovery Cream. An Artful Blog absolute favorite for its unisex qualities, healing Sunflower, Calendula & Sea Buckhorn properties + aromatics of Neroli, Sandalwood & a touch of sour Rose anchored with fresh-soaked Earth. Crafted by a great Green & grounded grooming line free of synthetic chemicals and toxins out of Vermont, with a brand ethos that comes from a desire to live a healthy, active, stress-free natural life close to the land. A stand out cream and brand in an increasingly crowded field for its philosophy, simplicity, efficacy, clean packaging & quality.

Sundari Neem Hand & Chamomile Eye Oil

Ayurveda teaches that the balancing of mind, body and spirit will ultimately lead to peace, harmony and lasting beauty, as will picking up Sundari’s stellar new floral citrus Neem Hand Oil & best-selling Chamomile Eye Oil. Positively potent travel-friendly essential oil aromatic botanical treats to quench thirsty skin. Skin is instantly relieved upon contact while the essential oils soak deep into the dermis to boost natural repair and defense processes. Sundari encompasses a complete line of Ayurvedic luxury spa treatments with worldwide distribution, that will help you discover truly healthy skin & encourage you to find your own sense of well-being.

Gülsha Rose Perfecting & Regenerative Elixirs

Discover distinctly divine & luxurious Rosa Damascena flower oil potions that are highly effective skin-enhancing elixirs for day & night. Formulated by French skincare experts & made in the Isparta region of Turkey famous for its Roses, using traditional techniques handed down through generations, with only a limited number of bottles being produced each year. It takes approximately 4000 kilograms of Roses, hand-picked before the sunrise, to produce just one kilo of pure Rose oil in an incredibly labor-intensive process. Gülsha perfectly distills this fragrant skin-loving essence & combines it with other powerfully healing & protective seed oils to nourish dehydrated skin with vital nutrients to restore radiance.

L.L. Bean Upworthy Down Jacket & Hunter Boots

Stay warm dry & stylishly seasonal in these Loden Green rural landscape classic wares. Artful Blog favorites for Gray Green rugged riding style perfection. L.L. Bean, the quintessential American company based in Maine known for its iconic boots and catalog, plus clothes & gear designed for getting out there, with cutting-edge technology for staying safe & warm. Whose motto is the outside is inside everything they make. At some point the typical New Englander stops letting the weather ruin another pair of boots and picks up a pair of Hunter boots. Then wonders how they ever did without them! Founded in 1856, Hunter is a British heritage brand renowned for its iconic original boot, and Royal Appointment to HM The Queen & HRH The Duke of Edinburgh. The brand has a rich history of innovation and continues to forge designs that shield pioneers from the elements and bleakest of landscapes.

Dooney & Bourke Florentine Collection 

Dooney & Burke = vintage vibes Florentine gift to self or other that will stand the test of time. Inspired by America’s rich history in leather goods, ranging from mail pouches to saddle bags & early military gear, Dooney & Bourke known for its New England roots and heritage, designs & crafts instant classics with the perfect union of timeless American style, the highest regard for the finest raw materials & time-honored techniques of old world craftsman. The Florentine Collection with Vacchetta leather, matte Gold hardware & micro-suede detailing, has the look & feel of fine saddlery leather, and develops an even richer patina with time and use. The Artful Living Blog’s favorite pieces rich with enduring style, timeless versatility & effortless functionality.

Satya Jewelry Chakra Collection

Satya means “truth” in Sanskrit, and that sentiment beautifully inspires the New York-based designer yogini jewelry line of the same name, handcrafted for the modern & fearless woman in mind. Offering necklaces, bracelets, malas and earrings with symbols & semi-precious gemstones within specialty collections such as: Mandala -that embodies the divine spirit of this age-old art form, and Chakra -that delivers powerful messaging, mantras & inspiration to tap into empowerment. This year The Artful Living Blog chose Citrine & Yellow Jade as its empowering crystal allies for 2018. Both Solar Plexus Chakra stones -or Manipura, which governs health, self-worth & energy. The solar plexus chakra is located right above the naval, and honors the life force, self-esteem & confidence. Manipura infuses the body with energy, balance & strength. In wearing these stones, you are supported to blossom in your growing spirituality, with inner peace, joy & happiness.

Farmhouse Pottery Candles & Match Striker

Farmhouse Pottery, Vermont based artisanal potters offering unique one-of-a-kind handmade pottery, décor & gifts. With original shapes brought back from another time when storage was done with handcrafted vessels. Rooted in traditional American pottery styling, basic in design, with many purposes for the home and entertaining, Farmhouse Pottery vessels are household essentials, that bring pleasure to everyday utility. Nothing celebrates seasonal nostalgia & the Winter Solstice –The Artful Living Blog’s second favorite season, with simple sophistication better than Farmhouse’s carefully crafted candles. With woodsy notes of Balsam Fir, Cedar & Sandalwood oils inspired by Vermont’s rural landscape, preserved natural beauty & seasonal change.

Edens Garden Single & Synergy Blend Essential Oils

While there are a lot of essential oil companies these days, only a few brands manage to get the real seal of approval when it comes to being utterly trustworthy & favored by their customers. Known for having an amazing variety of therapeutic-grade essential oils as well as beautiful gift sets & beneficial carrier oils, it comes as no surprise that Edens Garden is considered one of the best in terms of quality, price-point, selection & service. The expert aromatherapist crafted & curated collection of synergy blends are particularly noteworthy remedies, also included are 18 thoughtful OK For Kids blends, prompting everything from calm to sleep to joy. Edens Garden seasonal diffuser blend recipe: 4 Drops of Cedarwood + 4 Drops of Pine. The Artful Living Blog loves to drop this blend atop the woodstove this time of year for scentsational seasonal ambiance!

Alicia Adams Alpaca Baby Alpaca Throw

A 100% Baby Alpaca Handmade Throw that is softer than cashmere is just sublime. Alpaca is one of the world’s most luxurious fabrics, cherished the world over, not only for its scarcity but also for its natural attributes, its fineness, durability, and hypoallergenic & lightweight qualities. Adams’s gorgeous accessories suit any season, a swoon-worthy collection of hand-spun sweaters, blankets, robes & accessories perfect for stepping up your Winter wardrobe or gift-giving. The Artful Blog finds the throws especially comforting, perfect for Winter into Spring evenings by the fire. Alicia Adams Alpaca raises & manages its own herd of over 200 Suri Alpacas at The Artful Living Blog’s favorite family farm in New York’s Hudson Valley.

On Yoga

YOGA The Secret of Life by Francesco Mastalia, Cloth Hardcover, 224 Pages, Published by powerHouse Books, Worldwide release October 2017.

YOGA The Secret of Life is a photo-documentary about the spiritual and physical journey of yoga. Through photographs and text this fine art book explores the personal experiences of 108 of today’s leading practitioners and how this ancient practice has transformed their mind, body, and spirit.

The photographs for the project are taken on glass plates using the wet collodion process, a photographic technique dating back to the 1850’s. With the use of a large format wooden camera and antique brass lens, glass plates are hand-coated to produce one-of-a-kind ‘ambrotype’ images. The collodion process transports us to another place and time. When the light-sensitive chemicals absorb the sun’s ultraviolet rays, we enter a mysterious world where art and alchemy embrace. The photographs take on another dimension with the words that accompany them. The text provides an intimate and enlightening account of each yogi’s personal journey.

Elena Brower from YOGA The Secret Life by Francesco Mastalia.

Beyond the physical postures, YOGA The Secret of Life delves deep into the purpose of our existence and how to live a happy and fulfilled life. It explores understanding who we truly are, why we are here, and what our ultimate purpose is on this planet. Included are world-renowned yogis Radhanath Swami, Sharon Gannon, Davide Life, Gurmukh Kaur Khasla, Sri Dharma Mittra, Yogi Amrit Desai, Yogiraj Alan Finger, Shiva Rea, Rod Stryker, Seane Corn, Rodney Yee, Colleen Saidman Yee, Dana Flynn, Elena Brower, Krishna Das, Jai Uttal and more.

About

Italian-born Hudson Valley New York-based Francesco Mastalia is a documentary photographer and author that has traveled the world photographing tribal, religious, spiritual, and indigenous people. His first book Dreads, published by Workman Artisan is a photo documentary on the history of dreadlocks, which includes an introduction by Pulitzer Prize-winning author Alice Walker. His recent book Organic: Farmers & Chefs of the Hudson Valley published by powerHouse Books is a photo-documentary of the Hudson Valley’s organic sustainable food movement. The portraits of the farmers and chefs therein were also photographed using the wet plate collodion photographic process resulting in a beautifully evocative narrative with a nostalgic feel.

Arise Festival

ARISE Musical Festival 5th Year Celebration August 4th-6th, 2017.  A musically diverse, festival-wonderland experience. Featuring 8 stages of live music, yoga, workshops, provocative documentary films and panel discussions, art installations, live painters and art gallery, performance artists, theme camps, a Wisdom Village and a Solution’s Village -showcasing ecological and social justice solutions with practical on-site demonstrations designed to make our world a better place, and more on 100+ beautiful mountain valley acres. Located at Sunrise Ranch -a 350-acre organic farm and retreat center located in a stunning Colorado mountain valley just west of the town of Loveland, this breathtaking Rocky Mountain oasis is the perfect container for participants to entertain and be entertained, explore their creative potential, connect with nature, stretch out, dive in, and dance. #arisethisaugust

About

The consummate summer camping festival for conscientious music fans -ARISE is renowned for bold and progressive “global cooling” initiatives, such as a long-held commitment to planting one tree with every ticket sold, staging a pre-festival permaculture training, local sourcing, an organic farmer’s market in the campground, and a leave-no-trace ethos. More than a music festival, it’s a movement. See here for lineup & tickets.

Note: The Artful Blog’s alma mater Naropa University has aligned with ARISE and is offering a discount on festival tickets to the Naropa community -current students & alumni.