Published by Atria Books, A Division of Simon and Schuster, Inc.
“Albert Clayton Gaulden is wise, insightful, straight, and committed to the authentic expression of each and every one of us. Join him on this journey and discover a surprise about your authentic nature.” --Debbie Ford, NY Times Bestselling author of Why Good People Do Bad Things: How to Stop Being Your Own Worst Enemy
There have been so many requests recently, especially due to the rollercoaster financial markets, crumbling housing crisis, and other life challenges, that we at the Sedona Intensive™ have begun to offer Extended Sessions. In weekly sessions we are able to see how you and your planets in angulation and aspect are compatible or incongruent to what’s going on in the world. We take the planetary movements for the week ahead and see how Void of Course Moons, retrogrades, New and Full Moons and Eclipses affect you personally. Having this information can mean the difference in being caught up in pandemonium and panic that is not applicable to you but you don’t know it.
Call the office at 800-647-0732 and inquire about the Extended Sessions.
Light Foundation Scholarship Fund Needs Your Help
There are a lot of people who need help; oftentimes it is getting sober or straight and in other instances it is coming to terms with lifelong issues that keep them from being authentic. The Light Foundation, a not-for-profit IRS-approved organization, would like for you to be a part of this effort to help others clear away the wreckage of their past through help in the Sedona Intensive. All donations are tax-deductible.
Please send donations to:
Light Foundation Scholarship Fund,
PO Box 50, Sedona, AZ 86339
I have known Robert Hunter more than ten years. He met a client and close personal friend of mine, Diane Ladd when he came to Sedona to go through the Sedona Intensive™, and married her one year later to the day, on Valentine’s Day. Robert is a savvy man and a brilliant assessor of what will fly in the spiritual hemisphere and what is too questionable for his taste. His new book, CURIOUS JOURNEY—ORIGINS, is an incredible survey of the religious and spiritual developing worlds and his insights are very valuable even for the seasoned seeker or searcher. Hunter distinguishes for the reader between what he feels is true and what is someone’s vivid imagination. Buy the book and read it and you will want to give it to your friends.
Bob Natiello and his Dog Fight
I met Bob Natiello and Peggy, his adorable wife of umpteen years, swimming at my health club. He is tall and affable—a true aficionado of opera and a former advertising executive from New York. One night I was reading my monthly issue of Destinations Magazine from American Express and lo and behold there was a nameless mention of a writer from Sedona in a writer’s conference in Positano, Italy. I put Bob’s bio together in my head and sent him the article. Sure enough, it was Bob. I asked to read one of his short stories, and since I thought it good enough for one of my favorite magazines, The New Yorker, I asked to interview him and to share his funny and brilliantly written story, Dog Fight.
Q. Bob, were you a copywriter when you worked in advertising? Is that how you got started writing short stories?
A. Ever since high school, I've wanted to write short stories. But the writing I did for major NYC ad agencies focused almost exclusively on marketing plans for such clients as General Electric and Procter & Gamble. This kind of writing is helpful to the degree that it teaches you the importance of clarity, grammar, and paragraph construction. Aside from that, it's little help in fiction writing. For fiction, I had to learn a whole new set of skills. Being selected to attend the Positano (Italy) workshop placed me among a group of professional novelists and script writers. I learned a great deal about the craft of story telling.
Q. The story that appeared about you in the New York Post was about how you got into ball games free when you were a kid. Do you take real people and real events and turn them into fiction?
A. The story about my experiences as a youthful Brooklyn Dodger stile boy appeared in the Sunday New York Times this past fall. It took the form of a memoir--non-fiction. All of it was true. I could walk to Ebbets Field, the Dodgers home stadium, from our apartment. So a job that paid 50 cents and allowed me to see the Dodgers play was a coveted summer job for a 14-year old. But being hired was so competitive, I had to change my name to get it. That was the peg I hung the story on.
Writing a memoir is easier than writing fiction. All of it is true. Writing fiction requires the writer to "make it up." That's where observations of real people and real events play an important role. All fiction writers color and embellish people and situations they've personally experienced.
Q. Do you have an agent? If the rest of your stories are anything as good as Dog Fight you have a treasure trove of resources to make golden years income.
A. I don't have an agent yet. But the ones I've talked to tell me a book of short stories has to feature at least a few that have already been published in major magazines like The New Yorker, Esquire, etc. That's what I'm working on now.
Q. You are in a writers group in Sedona. Do you find these workshops helpful or are they vanity opportunities for untalented writers to get praise from their peers?
A. Praise from my writing group fellows? Anything but. They are very demanding. And very realistic. They call a spade a bloody shovel. And in their destructive way, they are very helpful.
DOG FIGHT By Robert Anthony Natiello
Any morning, any day of the week, I can tell you exactly where Frankie is and what he’s up to. He’s inside Manhattan’s Astor Garage changing into his work clothes--top hat, white tie and tails.
Notice I only gave you his first name. Other than relatives and a few close friends, hardly anyone knows Frankie’s last name. I know it, but only because he swore me to secrecy. So before I tell you, I have to swear you to secrecy. It’s Sassone. Frankie Sassone. You can’t tell anyone.
Know why he’s so tight-lipped about it? Because people shorten it to Frankie Sass.
“By itself, there’s nothing wrong with Frankie Sass,” he says. “But you get wise guys. They get tongue-tied on purpose, and Frankie Sass comes out ‘Frankie’s Ass.’ Like I’m supposed to think that’s funny. You know, cute.” Frankie’s an unusual guy: a proud man with low self-esteem.
By the time you get this issue of the newsletter Scott and I will be in Egypt with ten clients and friends—stepping back in time to see what the past has to reveal about our future. I will celebrate 29 years of sobriety in Lower Egypt, Cairo on February 18th. In my drinking years I could not get out of either the bars or my bed at the end of my active alcoholism. What a difference a day at a time makes.
It is so hard to imagine that a Southern chap, taught to fear God, to go to church every Wednesday and Sunday, who never drank a drop until he was 20 years-old, chose to end the alcoholic bloodline. There were many alcoholic men on my father’s side, yet my brothers and sisters never drink. Go figure.
Every year that I am another year older without a drink or a drug I celebrate my birthday by making myself available to help the alcoholic-addict in any way I can. If you or someone you know is suffering from the disease of alcoholism, call the office and let’s see how we can start you on the road to freedom from the bondage of self and others. I have done a lot of incredible things in sobriety but only because I found a Higher Power within me and I came to know that I am an ordinary man—living an extraordinary life.
If you or a loved one is struggling with life challenges-a career change, divorce, grief, addictions or compulsions-give us a call and let the Sedona Intensive give you the help you need. Don't face these problems alone. Let our support team of professional therapists help you today.
When I got the call from the ranch manager, I just knew it wasn’t going to be good news. “Magic doesn’t look good and the vet is on the way”, Chuck mumbled. I tried to think positive by not fueling the barrage of ‘what ifs’ that filled my head, but a knowing deep inside of me began to accept that Magic was ready to say goodbye. At just thirteen years old coupled with an even more youthful spirit, I thought he would live much longer. I had hoped his life would be long enough so that his loving spirit would at least see my children enter this world and touch their lives as he did mine, and so many others. But that wasn’t the case. My friend Magic died suddenly, yet comfortably on February 9.
Magic was my first horse, and as the saying goes, “Everybody’s first horse is the best horse”, certainly held true for me. We were so compatible and so similar in so many ways. We both liked to be in the lead, and both grew anxious when we couldn’t be. We each loved the company of other horses and riders, yet also enjoyed the solitude of being alone with nature.
Magic changed my life drastically. That doesn’t mean our relationship didn’t experience its’ share of challenges. Not only was I a new horse owner, which he was well aware, he had a strange new home with unfamiliar surroundings that included many more horses, more noise and teenagers—a lot of them. It was in the first week of owning him that I thought I got the wrong horse. He was highly spirited, hyper sensitive and strong willed, all of which produced at times a neurotic, insecure and fearful being. Hmmm, it all started to look too familiar. He is a mirror of me. At this point, I thought I could either take him back to his previous owner, or I could love and support him, to which thankfully I chose the latter. Thus was started an incredible journey of self-discovery. I was honoring a whole new part of myself through the acceptance of Magic as he was, imperfections and all. Through it all, I became a better person while Magic matured to be a safer mount.
So it is with a heavy heart and vale of tears that I say goodbye to Magic, yet I do know that our time together was short yet incredibly sweet. It was rich with lessons, deep with meaning and above all it produced an amazing connection to each other built on mutual trust and respect. What more could I ask?
by Andrew Bell
Whenever we feel lost, or can’t summon the intelligence necessary to answer a vital question, we always look for the one person we know, who must have some idea how to answer it. In my life, I have always turned to my family, who seem to always have some notion of how to approach a dilemma, or my teachers, who have years of experience in trying to solve them. However, sometimes there are those stumping problems that seem completely unsolvable, and not even those you admire can truly conquer.
Some of those you question may have some vague notion of the answer, but it’s clear that no one can reply confidently. Whenever such a quandary occurs, I always realize man’s limitations and turn it over to God. In life, some questions can’t truly be answered, and I always feel like when you realize you have approached such questions, God must be called upon and trusted to answer such predicaments.
In many regards, the U.S. Economy, and the correct path to its resurrection is in many ways, one of these truly unanswerable impasses in which, although advisers are lending years of hand on knowledge and research, none of us can truly know what path we must take in order to better our future. When I hear constantly, the arguments and contentious bickering between Democrats and Republicans over the Stimulus, I realize that the Stimulus represents a major moment, where I can’t really find the answer to whether or not we should pursue such drastic measures.
I have asked teachers, family members, and almost no one seems to know whether the Stimulus will work, or even how we can determine success, under such unpredictable circumstances. As such, I believe that we have found ourselves at a standstill, in which we as a nation should argue our own viewpoints, and once the votes are cast, let God determine the answer. While some like Karl Rove, so confident in their expertise are already deeming an unresolved bill a failure, I will reserve my opinion, and turn it over to God. Only then, in my opinion, can the truth be discovered, the correct path illuminated and our nation finally be restored.
Thank God that the planet Mercury is now direct in motion. The three weeks it was in retrograde made life for a lot of us confusing and out of kilter. Saturn is the only retrograde planet through the Aquarian Sun Cycle, which means that Virgos and other mutable planets like Pisces, Gemini and Sagittarians will have a break from all the tough lessons that Saturn has to teach us.
There will be a New Moon on February 24th at 6 degrees of Pisces; new moons mean new beginnings for Pisces, Taurus, Capricorns, Cancer, Virgo, and Scorpio. Pisces enhances vision and creativity. In the cold and dank days of February the inspiration of Piscean influences can lighten the otherwise depression of this cycle.
There will be a Full Moon at 20 degrees of Virgo on March 10th that will put at ending to certain affairs for Pisces and Virgo. Perhaps it will be the end of waiting and delays and the momentum will pick up with work projects and general cohesion of one’s life. Other earth (Taurus and Capricorn) and water (Cancer and Scorpio) signs will benefit as well.
I will remind you that Pluto in Capricorn is requiring that all of us do our part to rebuild and reconstruct our nation financially. The biggest sink hole to recovery is the Fear Factor. Hoarding and stockpiling as many did during tough times of the Depression is not the answer. With the newer and more closely monitored stop-gaps that the Federal Government will implement in banking and financial markets will give greater protection against malfeasance and crooked schemes that eventually heretofore bankrupted its depositors and investors.
March 14-15, 2009
Lecture and Book Signing
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University of Arizona Campus
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THE WALK THAT
LEFT A TRAIL
When Scott sent me this video to screen I had no idea it would be about a man who was born with feet and legs that make it hard for him to walk—and yet in one season he walked every hole of every PGA golf tournament. The video is inspiring (keep your Kleenex ready for the tears) and I wanted to share it with all of you. The irony is that I have lived on a golf course for almost nineteen years and have never played a round of golf. And I was born with club feet, but this man and his journey will stay with me forever.
‘U @ 50’
At a meeting of the AARP (American Association of Retired People) they showed a video that was submitted in a contest by a 20 year old. The contest was Titled 'u @ 50'. This video won second place. When they showed it, everyone in the room was awe-struck and broke into spontaneous applause. So simple and yet so brilliant. Take a minute and watch it. Be sure to read along both foreword & backwards. Sound on! www.youtube.com
A Book WE RECOMMEND
Peaks and Valleys: Making Good And Bad Times Work For You--At Work And In Life
by Spencer, Johnson, M.D.
Light Foundation Scholarship Fund
A 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization created by several Sedona Intensive graduates, providing recovery services for alcoholics, addicts and other dysfunctions and disorders to those who need such assistance but are unable to pay.
Send us one specific question you want answered and by
Scott or Albert will give you some insights every month in the Newsletter.
Albert has a unique way of pulling audiences in with many astrological insights.
Capable of speaking on a variety of topics, he can also shape a talk to match your needs.
Call us at 1-800-647-0732 for more information.
Pisces (February 18 - March 20)
Hallelujah! Hallelujah! Hallelujah! With the New Moon at 6 degrees of Pisces on February 24 you should be ready to roll; take the Good Ship Lollipop to your favorite destination. You have grown so accustomed to the shake, rattle and jolt of Uranus in Pisces that the earth moving beneath your feet can only sweeten the pot for what you want to accomplish. Now that Saturn is retrograde in Virgo the harsh realities of life have slowed to a crawl. Review the roadmap before you get in the car for exciting destinations, but otherwise, go for it!
Aries (March 21 - April 20)
How can there be any good news even for you rams when the world seems to have gone topsy-turvy? Hold on a minute, Mr. Fire Sign “the Sun is exalted in Aries” big shot! Haven’t you always said that you have a zillion ways to start a fire—or to put one out? With the Solar Eclipse in Aquarius in January in a great position to enable you to do whatever, and the Lunar Eclipse Full Moon on February 9th in Leo to fill your tank—and with Jupiter in Aquarius also in a fabulous configuration to aid and abet you, all system’s are on go for you. Just beware that Pluto in Capricorn lurks to keep you honest.
Taurus (April 21 - May 20)
You may want to pull your hair out before you pull your money out of whatever sink hole you put it in. Those eclipses and the path of the Sun through Aquarius were not too good to you last month. Do what this Moon in Taurus fellow is doing: paying off debt rather than giving it to the investment man. If I were you, I would rather have less debt than continue to feed the kitty while the heavens seem to be stacked against me and my portfolio. Now that the Sun is moving into Pisces, the stars and asteroids will bless you where your money lives. Still, caution is the bi-word.
Gemini (May 21 - June 20)
When President Obama promised change, change, change, he must have had Geminis in mind. You won’t know what to do with all the luck and love that is coming your way—with the euros, pounds and American dollah to pay for what’s on your mind. Those eclipses in Aquarius and Leo lifted your boat into the deepest waters and your sails have unfurled to catch the energy of what the stars have in store for you. It’s about time you were able to get out of that funk and find a roadmap that leads somewhere exciting and fun-filled. The work opportunities are going to multiply for you even in these harsh and unsteady times. Your secret to success is when the world gives you a challenge motivation is your middle name.
Cancer (June 21 - July 22)
The groundhog saw his shadow so you might want to tend to house chores and delay spring cleaning for this zodiac cycle. However, the New and Full Moon are both making favorable aspects to Cancer so you’ll begin to feel as if luck is on your side when you want to see where to invest your nest egg. The markets are going to drag for awhile so use caution when you place your bets on what’s going to pay off. This is also a good time to be aware of any health issue—is it time for a check-up that you’ve been delaying? If you get a good report, take a break from your routine and treat yourself to massage or a week-end getaway to your favorite spa.
Leo (July 22 - August 22)
If you’re still reeling from investment losses under that Lunar Eclipse Full Moon on February 9th kick back and regroup. Although you are known to be one of the zodiac’s risk takers, you might want to cash in your chips and sit on the sidelines rather than risk your cold hard cash on another turn of pitch and toss. Since Leo rules the heart and loves to be in love, make sure that you are paying enough attention to your main man or the lady in your life. Revisit how to keep romance in your world. Financial woes can never put out the fires of passion unless you let them.
Virgo (August 23 - September 22)
Now that Saturn is retrograde (the harsh lessons of life will abate for a few months), count your blessings instead of seeing what’s wrong with you and the world. If you are trying to sell property, you are in a better cycle to do so now that Mercury is out of retrograde. Needing to make a career change, do so after the 7th of March. Where you are going to need more practice is in learning to put your best foot forward as you monitor your mouth to draw the world to you rather than repel. Virgos are always better off remembering that God is in charge of the universe not you or your sever critic.
Libra (September 23 - October 22)
After having had all the power moves from those eclipses last planetary cycle, it is now time for you to make some super efforts to get your authentic self onto stage center. Your days of always having to be with someone—anyone will do—not to be alone—are over. The real self is connected to the shadow partnership, the only relationship you will every need until you are ready to seek a true partnership with the man or woman of your dreams. Since Pluto in Capricorn is asking the infrastructure of the world to be retooled, it is time for Libras to make peace with his or her invisible partner.
Scorpio (October 23 - November 21)
There are a lot of plans on the horizon for you this month so now comes the time to discern. Choose what you want to do carefully because you are going to have to stay with it or them for awhile. With all the water planets in this planetary cycle you could find yourself being a bit overwhelmed—too many people want too much from you. If it is your momma closing in on you, ask a sister to help out; if it turns out to be a friend who is asking too much one more time, sit him down and explain the facts of your life—‘it is your turn and my time’. Always ask, “What can I do for you?” But be judicious enough to know when there’s no more to give.
Sagittarius (November 22 - December 20)
With all the restructuring and retooling of life all around you the challenge is to stay put, clear the playing field and begin to plant a new crop. It is not enough to walk to the beat of your own tom-tom or hum a melody that only you hear, it is time to make your mark in the world by being responsible for your actions, or in your case, inaction—or doing things that don’t get you anywhere. Sagittarians are known to have a lot of faith, waiting for God to bring the breadbasket to your door. I hear the Divine say to tell you, “If you are wont to eat vegan or close to it, pick up the hoe”. God helps those who know how to use the gifts He gave them.
Capricorn (December 21 - January 19)
We don’t want to knock on your door while you are snoozing, but we may want to remind you that we are coming into the planting season. No one can shift into action quicker than you Goats. However, every year even you Capricorns have to take a closer look to see what grew and what died on the vine; who’s on the same page with your game plan from who is a stumbling block. Some wise old sage once said ‘that a life not inventoried is a life not worth living.’ You’ve read in here for more than a year: Pluto in Capricorn put your sign in the driver’s seat. Don’t wreck the assignment before it starts.
Aquarius (January 20 - February 17)
No one and no sign can make the strides that you can this month. Jupiter has moved into Aquarius and it joins creative and imaginative Neptune to pave the way for your wildest dream to come true. Ordinarily if it’s too good to be true, it ain’t—but not for you Water Bearers. This whole year you will be able to dig out that manuscript and sell it or that song and have someone sing it. Listen to the voice of intuition. And if you are not stoned or drunk you might win the jackpot. Good luck with choices. One tiny caveat—Neptune is still in Aquarius for awhile longer. Don’t be hoodwinked by your own self-deception.
Spirituality: The Next Starbucks?
by Sarah McLean
Today I was so surprised to see that after 51 weeks, Elizabeth Gilbert’s Eat, Pray, Love is STILL #1 on the New York Times’ Best Seller List. And in 2008, millions of people from around the globe logged on to Oprah.com for Eckhart Tolle’s New Earth, Awakening to Your Life’s Purpose book study and webinar. What is going on? Is meditation and spirituality going main stream? I hope so. I’ve been waiting a while for this.
Spirituality isn't just confined to the New Age movement anymore; it is undeniably migrating to the center of mainstream cultural awareness. I mean, Oprah meditating live in front of millions of people? Yes, it happened. Last year you could have seen me in full color in the Escapes section of the New York Times meditating. Eyes closed, cross legged. It’s true.
What used to be considered a private aspect of life – spirituality - is spilling over into the public domain and onto the internet and mainstream media. Spirituality is becoming more popular, trendy even. And I am happy about that.
Why is that? People are actually shopping for meaning and purpose. And the hypnosis of television, shopping, and fixating on things that are transitory is wearing thin. My husband read Michael Moe’s book, Finding the Next Starbucks, that says spirituality is a trend that is growing dramatically. And I have to admit, I often imagine a meditation center next to every Starbucks. Meditation is a great way to start a day, better even than a grande half caf soy latte.
When I worked at Deepak Chopra’s Center for Wellbeing in California, we started and ended our day with a group meditation. It actually made my job easier. If for some reason I was late doing it, or had to miss it all together, I really felt it. It’s almost like not having your cup of coffee in the morning. I still meditate every day, twice a day.
Oh, and by the way, when I checked to see what Eckhart Tolle’s advice was on my ‘Life’s Purpose’ and it all boiled down to one thing: To become aware of my awareness (that goes for you too). I’ve known that for a while, that is why I am a meditation teacher. I believe the single, most significant step to awakening to who you really are is by meditating every day.
Don’t know how? Don’t worry, you can do it and you don’t have to join a religion, wear special robes, eat differently or believe anything. You don’t even have to stop thinking. (You can’t stop thinking by thinking about stopping thinking either) You can still your mind through meditation.
Take a meditation class that focuses on a type of silent meditation like watching the breath or thinking a mantra. Be sure that it doesn’t emphasize any particular goal – like finding your animal totem, spiritual guide, or figuring out your past lives. You can even sit silently and gaze at a candle flame to get started. (email me and I’ll send you easy instructions).
It is only when your mind is still, that you can truly experience your true essence, your true self, the one who is thinking your thoughts, making your choices, your awareness. That is the real you that is beyond the roles you play and your self-image.
The journey toward self-discovery that silent daily meditation activates will bring you inner contentment and clarity more quickly and completely than any other single activity I know. And once you experience the restful, deep stillness and peace that meditation provides (be patient, it does happen), you will radiate that peacefulness to others. And over time, you’ll want to meditate more than you want that cup of coffee in the morning!
Sarah McLean teaches stress management techniques to individuals and businesses in Sedona and Scottsdale Arizona. She can be reached at (928) 204-0067. For more stress reduction techniques, visit www.SedonaMeditation.com.