I began studying metaphysics and astrology in my teens.
I graduated high school at the top of my class and then chose to
pursue a career as a musician. After 10 years in the music
business, I felt I needed a change and began working as a
health food chef. This was a time of spiritual awakening for
me. I began practicing meditation and Taoist energy
enhancement techniques which resulted in a totally unexpected
kundalini activation (spontaneous experience of spiritual
awakening) and a very blissful opening of my heart chakra which
changed my life forever. At this time I expanded my studies into
the more esoteric aspects of many great spiritual traditions.
In 1986, while working as a cook, I began giving astrology
readings. As my cooking career continued, it had it's ups and
downs, and gradually, the downs became more frequent than the
ups. I dreamed of opening my own restaurant someday but
couldn't figure out how to do it. Meanwhile, my addictive
tendencies kept dragging me down, resulting in a long dark night of the soul which progressed from unemployment into
homelessness and full blown drug addiction.
During the WTC attacks on September 11th, 2001, my life had spiraled so far out of control that the only viable alternative was to enter a rehab program. My rehabilitation process lasted about 2 years and resulted in a spiritual rebirth and the healing of my disease of addiction. At this time, I decided that I wanted to devote my life to bringing healing and spiritual guidance to my community. I was living out the wounded healer archetype. By healing my own disease, I could feel deep empathy and compassion for others and enter a life of service to relieve suffering.
Through prayer, I was guided to Reiki. A friend introduced me to Reiki Master Teacher Louisiana Zinn and I received my first Reiki treatment at her Reiki circle. After that first treatment, there was no doubt that Reiki was the right path for me. I took level 1&2 Reiki training with Louisiana and Reiki Master Teacher and Karuna Reiki Master Teacher training with Carlos Gonzalez of the International Center For Reiki Training.
Over the next 4 years, I decided to expand my energy healing repertoire by taking several levels of VortexHealing® training with Lorraine Stobbe - Goldbloom. I have been certified in Basic, Magical Structures, Karmic Intensive, Multi - Frequency / Merlin's Jewel and the LifeForm levels of VortexHealing®. During this time period, I also studied at The Soul Mastery Foundation of NY under Mohini Arlene Broska, who is one of the most advanced students of Swami Kaleshwar , one of the greatest healers and teachers of modern India. Under Mohini, I received initiation and training in the use of many mantras, yantras, meditations and healing techniques in the ancient Vedic tradition.
In 2007, I met Reiki Master Teacher Rev. Raquel Algarin while volunteering as a Reiki provider at an event at Hostos Community College in the Bronx. Raquel invited me to provide Reiki at The Lower East Side Harm Reduction Center, where she was the director. I gratefully accepted her offer and still work there part - time to this day. In 2010, Raquel encouraged me to take the 80 hr. training for the ear acupuncture detox protocol at the Lincoln Hospital Acupuncture Detox Center in the South Bronx. I completed my training there in August 2010 and began providing ear acupuncture for the clients at LESHRC.
In 2009, my good friend Peter Panken LAc. invited me to assist in his newly created free clinic for recovery from addictions at Third Root Community Health Center in Ditmas Park, Brooklyn. I teamed up with Peter and as the clinic slowly grew in popularity, we recruited more practitioners to handle the patient load. As the leader of the Reiki team, I now supervised as many as 12 of my students and Reiki Master friends every month in the clinic to serve the 50 - 60 patients.
In the winter of 2009, I created The Deer Spirit Newsletter. The newsletter, which originally came out monthly on the New Moon, was not only a way of informing my audience about my services, classes and events, but served as a vehicle for my interpretations of the New Moon astrological influences and guidance on how to set intentions on the New Moon. My passion for writing blossomed over time as I included a wider range of articles on various spiritual topics, and I also found pleasure in welcoming the contributions of creative and inspirational articles by my students and other healer friends.
In June 2010, one of my students named Rik Lim came to the Third Root Clinic to observe. Rik, who was a student at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, had recently completed my Reiki program and earned his Reiki Master Teacher certification. After the clinic, the team of healers went out for dinner. Peter and I were seated next to Rik when he began to talk about the website he was building for his new project called Healer2Healer, which involved bringing a team of healers to Guatemala to provide free clinics. I became very excited upon hearing about Rik's project because one of my dreams was to be able to do this kind of international non - profit healing work. Both Peter and I expressed interest in participating and Rik welcomed us. The project, which was originally conceived as a way to bring acupuncture teachers and students to Guatemala for a clinical learning and teaching experience, now began to take form and the first trip was scheduled for August 2010.
It turned out to be a life changing experience for the group with wide ranging ramifications. Rik, who had lived in Guatemala for 7 years, was able to make arrangements for the trip through his many contacts. The group consisted of 15 people including acupuncture teachers, students, Reiki practitioners and a massage therapist. We stayed in the eco - lodge at San Marcos Holistic Center on Lake Atitlan. Lake Atitlan is a large volcanic lake, high in the mountains of south western Guatemala. I was thrilled to be staying at Lake Atitlan, which is a Mayan power spot and considered to be one the most beautiful lakes on the planet. Rik had made arrangements for the group to take classes at the center on Mayan calendar, cosmology and healing with Mayan elder Chus Ixim Toj. Rik had made it known that we would be available to provide free clinics for the indigenous Maya, but nothing had been firmly arranged in advance of our arrival. So we were pleasantly surprised when on the 2nd day at the lake, we found ourselves loading into vans and on our way to our first free clinic in a neighboring village. We didn't not know what to expect. Would anyone show up for treatment? What would they think of a group of Americans wielding needles and practicing a strange Japanese healing touch modality? Would the language barrier be a problem?
The group stopped for lunch on the way to the clinic. Halfway through lunch, Rik called ahead to touch base with the small community center where we would be holding our clinic. After the call, Rik told the group that 50 people were waiting for treatment and we better get going! I will never forget the moment when we walked into the packed waiting room of the center. We got to work quickly and ended up treating over 70 patients of all ages. Our team provided free clinics in 2 more towns on Lake Atitlan on that trip. One of the highlights for me was leading a shamanic ceremony; a 9 dimensions activation on the Full Moon in Pisces at a ceremonial site on the mountain overlooking Lake Atitlan. I had received the teaching of the 9 dimensions from the world famous astrologer and author Barbara Hand Clow in her books The Pleiadean Agenda and The Alchemy of Nine Dimensions. I had also attended her Alchemy of Nine Dimensions workshop at Lilydale N.Y. in 2005 and it was a life changing experience. I had many conversations with Barbara and her co - teacher / husband Gerry during the workshop and they encouraged me to teach the material when I expressed an interest in doing so. The activation ceremony at Lake Atitlan was the first of many I have led since then.
The first Healer2Healer trip was a big success which led to many more trips to both Guatemala and the Peruvian Amazon. I participated in the second H2H trip in Dec. 2010, in which we attended the Unification Maya Winter Solstice Ceremonies with Mayan elders at the pyramids in Tikal and then gave free clinics in Antigua and at Anne Lossing's Project Ix'Canaan in El Remate. I also went on the group's first trip to the Peruvian Amazon in August, 2011. In Peru, we stayed at Paititi Institute for the Preservation of the Amazon Rainforest & Indigenous Culture, where we learned much about the Amazonian medicine traditions. We gave 5 days of free clinics at the neighboring village of Cahuide. Rik Lim's Healer2Healer project has provided thousands of free acupuncture, Reiki and massage treatments as well as many classes in which indigenous people have been taught basic Reiki, ear acupuncture, Chinese medicine and massage techniques. The great success of Rik's project has inspired many other NYC healers to form their own groups and provide free clinics and classes in Guatemala.
Roxanne Seitz interviews me on her Tell - A - Vision show which airs on White Plains, NY cable TV channel. I talk about my work at the Lower East Side Harm Reduction Center in Chinatown NYC,, my healing, teaching and counseling practice, my teaching and healing trips to Guatemala and Peru with Healer2Healer and Global Healthworks Foundation.