Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Bali’s Spiritual & Creative Pull: An Interview with Mooh Hood & Lori Goldberg

In March 2015 Mooh Hood and Lori Goldberg will be leading a “Women's Spiritual Art Journey in Bali”. Here, we catch up with Mooh and Lori to talk about what keeps drawing them back to Bali and the effect of this beautiful country on their own creative processes. We also delve into what participants can expect from the journey, from a spiritual and creative perspective. 

KB: What is it about Bali that captivated you and keeps drawing you back?

Mooh: Bali feeds my soul on many levels. It is alive with devotional rituals from the daily placement of beautiful offerings, to the dance, music, and art that is created for the enjoyment of the Gods and Goddesses. When I experience these unique ways to keep their world in balance it allows me to make sense of my world as well.

It is rare to be able to witness and also participate in such a rare culture that was created by “the Goddess birthing the world”. I find this constant awareness of their physical world seen and unseen the invoking the spirits of nature extremely compelling.

KB: What are you most excited about for this journey?

Mooh: I am excited about the timing of the March journey this year, as it will include the amazing holiday of Nyepi when the Balinese do an island wide cleanse of any negativity to enter in their New Year. Following an amazing night of giant Ogoh Ogoh mythical monster effigies, paraded around Ubud, we enter into a most unusual and sacred period, 24 hours of complete silence. We will use this time to create, meditate and just be quiet rare in our busy world. This is unique to Bali and must be experienced imagine!

This year will be exceptionally special with Lori bringing her own perspective; guiding us in our art focus, in her informed and playful way!

Lori: To share with a group of like-minded women a Bali experience. And to co-lead the journey with my dear friend Mooh. 

KB: What’s your favourite thing to do in Bali?

Mooh: My favourite things to do in Bali are walking early in the a.m. in the 
rice paddies and through the local villages, witnessing the beginnings of another glorious day.

I love going to the temples for prayer and beautiful ceremonies  (I can't get enough of the visuals of the Balinese in their temple finery) and getting blessed by the priests and priestesses.

Oh, did I mention the delicious fresh, local food we savour daily?

KB: What can participants on this journey expect from a creative perspective?

Lori: The creative process is intended to enhance our Bali experience. It does not take over, it adds. By committing on paper a visual response to an experience we had, it brings another layer of meaning and therefore enhances the experience and opens up new senses.

The best thing about the art part of this journey, you do not have to be an artist or have any experience. I have an approach to guiding that brings the intuitive, playful and fun side to making art. Yes techniques will be shown and support will be there.  I will teach techniques on drawing, composition, colour mixing, how to create a travelogue/a memory book of your Bali experience. Also included is collage, writing and photography. Each participant will have an art book/drawing tools that include pencil, pens, felt pens, oil pastel and a watercolour kit. I will augment with other materials, and other treats that will enhance the experience of creating a Travelogue. After the trip is completed, all participants will be invited back to my studio (Skype for those out of town) to take ideas from the art book and start a painting or mixed media art piece.

Mooh: I am hoping participants will take away with them a personal sense of opening to that precious balance within their own life.

They will have the memory of travelling in Bali with a group of like minded women, sharing deeply from the heart, in our rich circle time, and returning home with that soul-filled feeling. 

Journals, art notebooks, and cameras will be loaded with visuals to remind us of the rich experience of Bali from an insiders view and to nourish further creation. On a more frivolous note, they will be also bringing home incredible treasures they may choose to buy in the markets we visit.

KB: What effect does being in Bali have on your own creative processes?

Lori Goldberg: When I had the opportunity to visit Bali twice in the 80's I was struck by the Balinese and their beliefs about animism and that everything has a life force even their bicycles and paint brushes. Matter of fact they have birthday parties for these objects! I took it for face value and it completely resonated with me regarding the way I approach the creative process. I do believe everything has a life force and so the meaning behind my painting practice became deeper and I had more clarity about my own way of working. It was an amazing experience to go to a place where in the Balinese language there is no word for Artist, they just are. They are under divine obligation to make beautiful things. So I felt I had found my tribe... so to speak.

KB: Have your visual depictions of Bali changed significantly since your 1988 series of paintings Out of the Blue? If so, can you talk about how they have changed.

Lori: I still believe that everything has a life force and that my work has changed in that I explore different subject matters but the underlying sensibility is the same. When I approach a canvas, I am aware I am in a dialogue with my paint, brushes, canvas and of course the vision… though the vision can change... I think going back to Bali will inspire me to become freer in my work when I return. I am curious what will happen. And excited!

KB: Is there anything else about this journey that you’d like to share with us?

Lori: If you always wanted to go to Bali and you were waiting for the right time to go, then you do not have to wait any longer. Mooh and I are beautiful, kind-hearted, knowledgeable and fun women who are committed to giving you that amazing inside, no hassle for you, uplifting Bali experience that you deserve. 

Mooh: Something I would like to share is that we will have the opportunity to work with a healer women can choose to have that experience if they wish, everything is always optional. I always support each individual's desire to take personal down time and leave lots of room for it in our 12 days together.

I make sure women have a sweet place to stay the first few days if they come earlier to adjust to the journey and time difference. I also ensure that women are directed to good lodging if they wish to stay on.

To Read more about this creative, spiritual journey visit our website. To find out more about artist Lori Goldberg you can visit her website, and to read about Mooh Hood, including her Bali-inspired jewelry line follow this link.

~ Kim Bridgett


Thursday, October 30, 2014

Spiritual Journey to Bali Ignites Soulful Creativity

From March 12 - 23, 2015 artist Lori Goldberg and tour leader & jewelry designer Mooh Hood will travel to Bali with a small group of women for a journey of art, culture, spirituality and fun!

Women's Spiritual Art Journey in Baliwith Mooh Hood and Lori Goldberg” is an opportunity to spend time in one of the most beautiful places on earth with tour leaders who will nurture your own creative spirit and inspire you to see beauty with fresh eyes.

As Goldberg says,

"There is nothing better than to take a group of like-minded people to beauty spots like Bali where there is no word for Artist, they just are. The Balinese are under divine obligation to make beautiful things. So what better place in the world to be if you are a creative person than in a place like this."

Goldberg herself was touched by Bali early in her career, and the 1988 exhibition “Out of the Blue” was inspired by her travels there. This “spirited, playful and open-ended” exhibition captures a textured, multi-layered beauty, with figures floating in an “ethereal bath of light [and] luminous colour”.

Juluka Shuttle by Lori Goldberg

 For participants on this journey there will be plenty of time to explore creative processes with daily art journal sessions led by Goldberg as well as advice from the artist on techniques and creative documentation. A follow-up full-day session with Lori in her Vancouver studio is also included in this trip to help participants put together all that they have discovered in Bali.

Making Offerings in Bali

 This journey will also nurture your spiritual side through visits to sacred sites and temples, daily Circle Time for sharing from the heart, and 24 hours of silence to celebrate Balinese New Year in the traditional way. Spirituality is completely intertwined with creativity in Bali, and this journey honours both with time for quiet devotion combined with fun, leisure activities. Dancing, snorkelling, walks with a Naturalist guide are all on offer as well as an intriguing workshop on the “100 Uses of Coconut”!

Whether you’re involved in the creative industries on a daily basis or haven’t picked up a paintbrush since high school, this journey has much to offer. To feel true happiness, our bodies need to be in balance and our creative souls fed as much as our bellies. On this “Women'sSpiritual Art Journey in Bali with Mooh Hood and Lori Goldberg” you will join like-minded women who will support and inspire you as you re-connect to your true self in harmony with your exquisite surroundings.

This journey truly is a transformative travel gift to yourself.  

In an upcoming blog we will feature an exclusive not-to-be-missed interview with tour leaders, artist Lori Goldberg and Mooh Hood!

~ Kim Bridgett


Thursday, October 16, 2014

Applying the 13 Principles of KuKuulKaan

A New Message from Miguel Angel Vergara ahead of our journey, December 1-9 2014: “SacredPath Of Quetzalcoatl-Kukuulkaan with Miguel Angel Vergara: A Journey to Discover Your Potential in the Land of the Toltec & Maya”.

“The identity of the Maya Kukulcan with the Mexican Quetzalcoatl and the Mexican origin of the worship of this culture-hero have been well established.” — From the Chilam Balam of Chumayel

When the Spanish arrived in Yucatan, the Maya had many books telling of their history, science, medicine, and spiritual beliefs and practices written in Maya hieroglyphs. Most were destroyed but some were first transcribed in Maya using the European script taught to them by the Spanish in the 16th century.

These have survived and are now translated into Spanish and some also into English. Chilam Balam is believed to be the name of the Maya scribe who put these books together shortly after the Spanish arrived. Working from ancient books and oral traditions he left us an amazing look into the past. 

There are nine books, each is named for the town in which they were found. The above quote is from the Chilam Balam of Chumayel, a town not far from Mayapan where we will be visiting on our journey in December.

From these books come the teachings of the 13 Principles of KuKuulKaan.  These principles teach that we are not alone, that everything is interconnected, we are one with the universe. He teaches that everything is vibration and it is through vibration that we are connected. KuKuulKaan also talks of the need to connect with the 4 Kingdoms and on the journey I will lead us in meditations and practices to do that, to connect with the spirits of the air, earth, water, and fire.

The 13 principles also teach that everything has its rhythm and how smoothly things go when we recognize our personal rhythms and flow with them. KuKuulKaan speaks of the importance of the Heart as the nest for our inner serpent. The serpent is the symbol for the great wisdom found in unconditional love.

On our journey I will bring alive all 13 of KuKuulKaan’s Principles in meditations, practices, ceremonies, and visits to the sacred sites. Putting these principles into practice in your daily lives will help you rise above all obstacles or situations that are currently holding you back from fulfilling your purpose and expressing who you really are.

~ Miguel Angel Vergara Calleros

To read more about this life-changing journey to Mexico with Miguel Angel please visit our website.


Thursday, October 2, 2014

5 Earth-Friendly Travel Tips

At Sacred Earth Journeys we’re constantly looking for new ways to improve our travel experiences while leaving a lighter footprint on the earth. In this blog, we share 5 tips that have helped us prepare for our journeys.

1. Pack Re-Useable Water & Snack Containers

Re-useable containers are a great way to cut down on plastic waste when we travel. Snack containers also help you make good food choices when travelling – it’s easy to buy fruit and veggies from a local market and take them with you on daytrips when you have something safe and secure to put them in. Make sure your water bottles are empty before going through airport customs or, if you’re concerned, pack them in your suitcase.

Good places to buy:

2. Rest and Practice Meditation

When we’re tired, stressed or overly excited, we tend to make poorer choices in all aspects of our lives. Travel decisions such as “what to pack”, “what do I really need?” become easier with sufficient sleep, rest and, ideally, a regular meditation practice. By caring for our minds in this way, we can avoid unnecessary purchases saving us money and helping the earth.

Good websites to help with your mental & spiritual self-care:

3. Buy Local Souvenirs

Shun the airport stores and bargain outlets when you travel, and choose to buy your souvenirs and treats from local artisans instead. Do a little research before you leave to find out what might be available or ask your local tour guide for advice if you’re travelling with a group.

There are a wealth of beautiful, handmade objets and textiles in every country, and buying directly from the maker or smaller business keeps your carbon footprint low and helps the local economy in a healthy way.

Good places to browse:

4. Shop Consciously for Must-Have Travel Essentials

Sunscreen, passport holders, carry-on bags, hats… there are many items that we do really need when we travel. If you’re buying any of these items new ahead of your next trip, take a moment to see if you’re buying from a store or choosing a brand that values the planet as much as you do.

Many stores offer online shopping so even if you don’t live in a big city or have access to the store you’d prefer, you can plan ahead a little and mail order your travel essentials.

Shopping destinations to consider:

5. Choose Your Destinations Carefully

The local newspaper may have a fantastic deal on an all-inclusive vacation to the current hot spot, but is it really where you want to go? Air travel can take a heavy toll on the planet – and on our bodies – so it’s important to ensure you’re choosing a destination that has real meaning and true value to you.

If there’s a once-in-a-lifetime trip you’d love to take in the next 5 years, why not try a “staycation” or shorter local trips for a couple of years to help save for that journey you really want. You’ll never regret spending money on a travel experience that is meaningful and… it really could change your life!

Websites to help you choose your dream destination:

Do you have any earth-friendly travel tips you’d like to share? We’d love to hear them!

For more travel tips and inspiration be sure to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter! Let’s ensure conscious, earth-friendly travel is part of everyone’s travel itinerary.

~ Kim Bridgett