The Creative Compass: Writing Your Way – from Inspiration to Publication ~ Dan Millman and Sierra Prasada

How can I become more disciplined? How do I know if I’m talented? Should I self-publish? These are just a few of the perennial and contemporary questions addressed in this delightfully different guide. The authors — from different generations and writing genres — first help the reader assess where they are on their path. They then walk aspiring writers through five universal stages — Dream, Draft, Develop, Refine, and Share. While these stages apply to writers of every stripe, the emphasis is always on the reader navigating his or her own challenges, process, and goals. Insight-producing prompts and the wisdom of diverse artists (from Steinbeck and Thoreau to Spike Lee, Marilyn French, and Tom Clancy) help make every writer’s journey of creation as rewarding as its destination.

This book, written by father-daughter co-authors, reveals the five universal stages to creative mastery to guide you on the writer’s path. For writers, storytellers and other innovators, this book answers nearly any question you may have about the process. It will help you to: pursue ideas with which you strongly connect; learn what works best for you; overcome obstacles including doubt and anxiety; appreciate drafts as layers leading to quality craft; and find, in your practice, a metaphor that will enrich your life.

Chapters include: The Cycles and Layers of Learning; Sweat Trumps Talent; Never Surrender; The Master Metaphor; When the World Becomes Your Teacher, and much more.

Most people who’ve read Way of the Peaceful Warrior (or seen the movie) already know a few aspects of my life. And you may have seen my summary bio at my website, as follows:

“Dan Millman, a former world champion athlete, coach, martial arts instructor, and college professor, is author of Way of the Peaceful Warrior (adapted to film in 2006), and numerous other books read by millions of people in 29 languages. Dan teaches worldwide and has influenced people from all walks of life, including leaders in the fields of health, psychology, education, business, politics, sports, entertainment and the arts. Dan and his wife, Joy, live in Northern California. His most recent book is The Four Purposes of Life.

Dan’s website – peacefulwarrior.com — features a link to the “Life Purpose Calculator,”and to my online courses and other resources.”

Click here to browse inside.

The Creative Compass – Dan Millman and Sierra Prasada on Writing

In this short interview, Dan Millman author of WAY OF THE PEACEFUL WARRIOR and his daughter and co-author Sierra Prasada talk about their new book THE CREATIVE COMPASS: Writing Your Way from Inspiration to Publication.

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Everything I Needed to Know I Learned from My Six-Month-Old Awakening to Unconditional Self-Love in Motherhood By Kuwana Haulsey

There is a tribe in Africa where, the first time a woman leaves home following the confinement period after giving birth, everyone she meets along the road greets her with a sacred song otherwise reserved for warriors returning from battle. She’s honored as having lived through a rite of passage that will forever mark her womanhood as abundant and powerful and blessed. She’s respected as a fully franchised member of the most ubiquitous and yet most extraordinary group of beings in our collective experience: mothers.

Everything I Needed to Know, I Learned from a Six-Month-Old: Awakening to Unconditional Self Love in Motherhood is an Eat Pray Love for moms. It fuses memoir, spirituality and self-development into the unique perspective that babies are actually extraordinary spiritual teachers who are capable of showing their caregivers the way toward inspired living. Kuwana Haulsey imparts this deeper understanding of a universal truth of love , in which motherhood is explored as a means of waking up to her innate potential for personal transformation.

Kuwana Haulsey is the author of The Red Moon, which was a 2002 finalist for the Zora Neale Hurston/Richard Wright Legacy Award for Debut Fiction. Born and raised in New York City, she graduated with a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Rutgers University magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa. Kuwana has led seminars for the PEN/Faulkner Foundation in Washington, D.C., and at Rutgers University. She’s taught writing at UCLA and Agape International and is also an actress currently living in North Hollywood where she co-teaches classes on spirituality with Reverend Michael Beckwith.

Michael Bernard Beckwith is an American New Thought minister, author, and founder of the Agape International Spiritual Center in Culver City, CA, a New Thought church with more than 8,000 members. He lives in Los Angeles.

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Kuwana Haulsey and Kingston at six months old

Ten Questions/Topics of Discussion for Kuwana Haulsey, Author of Everything I Needed to Know I Learned from My Six-Month-Old

1. What prompted you to write about motherhood and spirituality?

Becoming a mother changes every facet of a woman’s life and I felt that there was an unrealistic paradigm being held up for women, which said that you can have it all and do it all—all at the same time—and that it should look effortless to boot. I talked to so many women who were struggling with the realities of parenthood and their changing roles in life and feeling unworthy, like they weren’t measuring up to this external standard. That paradigm is a total lie. On the other hand, it’s fashionable these days to try to “demystify” parenthood (i.e. say how lousy and over-hyped it is.) That too is a lie. I wanted to start a new conversation about living day-to-day in the joy and perfection of reality.

2. How do you define conscious parenting?

Conscious parenting is about mindfulness. It’s about committing to the practice of maintaining focused awareness, both to your child and his/her actions as well as your responses or reactions to what’s going on around you. It’s about choosing your responses rather than reacting to deep-seated triggers. Its about learning to be grateful for the challenges and the ugly stuff—in the moment, not after the fact—because you become aware that the gifts of life are not on the other side of the storms. They are the storms.

3. How does parenting consciously help caregivers to re-parent themselves?

Your children present you with delicious reminders of what your deepest triggers are, and probably on a daily basis. When you go within, it’s possible to look at those triggers and examine why certain circumstances/situations trigger you and why those circumstances/situations appear in your experience. At the same time, you can also step back and choose to dig deeper, to find out what it is that your child really needs in the moment. As you respond to the child’s real need, rather than reacting to their behavior, you heal the tensions of the moment and you also begin to heal the much deeper tensions and wounds within yourself. Because our children—and all the people in our lives—are simply mirrors of ourselves.

4. How do you feel some traditional child rearing practices undermine a woman’s ability to effectively parent her children?

In our society, we seem to have an almost pathological need to assert and maintain our independence. This shows up in so many different ways in our accepted child rearing practices—from feeding to sleeping to child care arrangements. When caregivers want to step outside those norms and practice more hands-on, heart-centered ways of being, people are quick to judge and give all kinds of unwanted advice. I can’t describe how many times people told me to “stop holding my baby so much” or he was going to turn into a “spoiled, dependent little monster.” Nothing could be further from the truth! I had no problem telling people “No, I’m not going to put my son down. Now mind your business.” But having your choices and decisions questioned can be daunting for many people. I think if we went back to more traditional ways of being (meaning prior to the mid 20th century, right-brained programming that comprise much of our child rearing “norms”) we would handle our children, and ourselves, with greater compassion and fluidity.

5. If babies are perfectly complete spiritual beings, does that mean that we’re all essentially perfect?

Yes, we are all perfect. Everyone is perfect exactly as we are. We are perfect in our imperfection. The Japanese tradition of Wabi-sabi describes beauty as that which is imperfect, impermanent and incomplete. The beauty is in the acceptance of what is. Likewise, I believe we’re all perfect emanations of God exactly as we are. That doesn’t mean that we don’t change or grow or improve our lot in life. It just means that we cannot be any better than where and what we are today. A lot of times, that concept is very difficult for us to grasp as adults. But it is immediately understandable and acceptable when we look into the eyes of a baby.

6. What is your relationship like with your son today?

It’s AWESOME! He’s amazing. He’s three years old and he’s challenging and crazy and full of jokes and amazingly astute insights. I wish I could take credit for his development. But I think the best thing we as parents can do is guide lightly and get out of their way. He already was all of those wonderful things when he arrived here. We just try to give him the space to remember that.

7. How has writing this book changed your life?

This book has helped me put into words the indescribable condition of motherhood. Through writing it, I started working through so many of the challenges that were occurring and becoming more conscious of my changing roles. Being conscious allowed me to stay in gratitude much more often and to have more compassion and accept more vulnerability. It is allowing me to step into my power as a woman, a mother, a wife and an artist.

8. How can reading this book change the lives/outlooks of those reading it?

Acceptance can be hard to come by in our society, which is constantly bombarding us with images of “more, bigger, better, faster…” I’d love to bring to the forefront a conversation about acceptance, reality and the true nature of joy. I think that’s what this book is about and that’s what I hope people walk away with: that unconditional love and acceptance is a birthright for us all. You don’t have to get anything or do anything to deserve it. It’s here now.

9. Is “joyful” or “blissful” parenting a fairy tale?

It depends on how you define joy and bliss. If you define joy and bliss as getting whatever you want and being without challenge, then yes it’s a fairy tale. If you define joy and bliss as a quality or state of being that is inherent within us all and needs only to be acknowledged and accepted, then it’s not a fairy tale. It’s the reality of this moment. And if you recognize that joy and bliss are most often born through challenge then you’ll know that it’s definitely not a fairy tale.

10. Now that you have two children, has your perspective changed?

Birthing another baby is like moving from your bachelor’s degree to your master’s. I hope the book is funny, because I sometimes fall out laughing when I think of the things that I was concerned about back in the beginning. The challenges and growth points are so much more acute now. My favorite quote from Joel Goldsmith is “There is no such thing as undemonstrated understanding.” With two children, life seems to conspire to make me aware of my learning curves and to show me the truth of what I actually understand about living on the growing edge. So my perspective hasn’t changed as much as it greatly deepens every day.

Source: vivaeditions.com

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