On the podcast…

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Fred Giles went to church 7 days a week as a kid. His mama was a pastor, so when he signed up for Bible college and began to study under a bishop, it seemed he was destined to follow in her shoes. And he did... but not really. Today, he's the pastor and founder of The Meeting Place Church in Greenville, SC where he's expanding the notion of what 'church' can be.

On the blog…

There's an old Irish story that says that over in HeavenTown, each soul walks up to God and tells God exactly what it wants its human life to look like.

The souls request the specific bliss and tragedies they want to experience on Earth. And God, being all beneficent and easy-going says, "Sure thing, sweetheart!" and gives each soul exactly what they've asked for.

So let's roll with that concept for a moment and talk about the Phoenix.

We all know the story. She's a bird who dies to be reborn, over and over. And since we're sticking with the Irish narrative above, the Phoenix has not been forced to be a Phoenix.

She knew what she was doing when she chose to stand in the Phoenix section of the Cosmic Checkout Line. Clear choice. "I choose to be a Phoenix".

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Creating a family spiritual date. Ep7: Tanya Geisler

Tanya Geisler is the kind of woman who argues with Sunday School teachers and then doles out mama bear hugs like no other. In episode 7 of The Sacred Podcast, Tanya and I talked about going to church some weeks and not others - and being entirely okay with that, creating a spiritual date with her family (I'm OBSESSED with this idea), how to know whether you're having a spiritual experience, and much more.

Have you ever forgotten to "be" spiritual? Maybe it was a day or week or even longer, where that thing you do to foster divine connection fell right out of your mind. Your gajillion and four other priorities and responsibilities had your attention, so your spiritual practice was straight up forgotten.

I used to feel like the worst kind of spiritual seeker when I forgot my own practice. I'd berate myself for dropping the spiritual ball.

It's THE UNIVERSE, for crying out loud. Consciousness. Mama Gaia. Your Higher Self. God. What kind of soul do I have that it could forget to spend 5 minutes connecting with the motherflippin' UNIVERSE?

Your soul is not malnourished or covered in coal if you forget to meditate. Or chant, or pray or whatever.

More than likely, the habit muscle of that particular practice is not yet fully developed, which is why you still need reminders.

You can do something about this. You can create a new habit - or deepen an existing one - so that the moments of forgetting...

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Merging science + spirituality. Ep6: Pace Smith

For most of her life, Pace Smith defined life through the lens of science and rationality. Until... she didn't. In episode 6 of The Sacred Podcast, Pace and I talked about transitioning from science geek to spiritual Sufi, enjoying the variety of the spiritual buffet vs choosing a single path to devote to, having conversations with people who don't share your spiritual beliefs, creating your own spiritual ceremonies + much more!

Strong attraction, solid eye contact and stimulating conversation. Easy, flirtatious, first date bliss.

And then… He doesn’t call.

No invitation on a(nother) magical date. No followup email or text message. Radio silence and goodbye forever.

Maybe he got a cancer diagnosis the next morning. Maybe his ex showed up on his doorstep that night and he said yes. Or maybe, he didn’t feel what you felt. -- Bummer, I know, but it’s possible.

And even though you will more than likely never know the full reason, all is not lost. Here are 4 possible ways a first date dead-end could actually be a POSITIVE, spiritually uplifting experience, that propels you forward:

#1. You are not a problem to be fixed. If they were your One, they would see that. It doesn't matter if there were a couple awkward moments. Or you told a story they couldn't relate to. Or you stuttered. What someone else finds embarrassing, your One will find endearing. What someone else interprets as insecurity, your One will see the courage in your vulnerability.