Wednesday, November 29, 2017

The Generosity of Being Yourself

We have this flower on the porch. It’s impossibly resilient to the cold, and totally mesmerizing. Vibrant sacral chakra orange leaves curl slightly and she looks at me, urging me to just look back, making me wonder about the wonders of life. Especially about generosity, and what generosity really is.

Nature is generous, constantly giving, if we keep our hands off destroying her flow. This particular flower got a little help on the way though, one of hundreds and hundreds of multicolored miracles that has lit up the garden all summer and fall. Not planted by me, mind you, but by a real gardener, my landlady Sandi LeGoullon. “Pick how many you want. Pick more!” says Sandi. “The more you pick, the more will grow.” So, I have. And she is right. I showered the porch, the whole cabin, sometimes even the stairs with this richness, all through summer and autumn. Now they’re all gone, except for this orange ball of resistance. As if her mission is to make me think.
That this is true generosity. When you give of something you love, it creates ripples. It creates abundance. It creates more. Sandi loves planting. I love picking flowers. Works out fine, for me. I think for Sandi. This is not the only way she is generous, though. Sandi and her husband Roger are the most generous landlords you can imagine. You would have to be, to have Michael and me renting the house just beside you.

Now, “our” part of the garden is … let’s say, more shamanic. With this I mean - often a mess. Things grow. But, hardly in rows. We’re also chanting by the creek, have fires late into the night, have a peculiar taste, are always up to something and have magazine boxes come and go from the front of the house as if they’re going out of style. Occasionally we invite all of Virginia for parties, and shaman classes. Sandi and Roger just smile. And join the party.

There are many ways to be generous. Jeffrey Norford – aka Santa on Mountainview Street in Charlottesville, Virginia, spends most of his “free” time creating an all-inclusive Christmas event at his totally outrageous Christmas house. I have no idea how much Jeffrey works with this over the year, or how much effort he puts in, but there are more Christmas lights, blow-up Rudolfs, and jingle bells than I ever knew could exist in this one place. There are also lots and lots of gifts for children, wherever they come from. And people literally come from all over the world, to enjoy this one spectacular spectacle. Funny thing is: When you talk with Jeffrey about what he does, his eyes glitter brighter than any Christmas lights. He loves what he does. Therefore, he can give, feeling, it seems, that he gets the most out of it. It’s like growing and picking flowers. If you do it for the right reasons - everybody wins.

There are many ways to be generous. I have noticed, over the years, that when I go into unstructured places, and give myself the luxury to create for the sake of creating, and give these creations away - that’s when they seem to mean something. People have thanked me for stories, spells and whip-off-in-the-moment collages years after I did them, long after I forgot I made them. But, they seem to have made a difference. I do, however, have a hard time recalling anyone thanking me from the bottom of their hearts because I did “the right thing,” or “what was expected.”

Be generous. Your own way. Only do what you love, and the rest will follow. That’s how you will survive the holidays. And if you do what you love, people will probably thank you for it. The impossibly resilient orange flower nods her head and agrees. Kid you not. Happy holidays.

From December editorial of December issue of The Echo World

Saturday, November 25, 2017

Linnea Star is coming to Charlottesville and Kezwick, Virginia 1-3 December

Do You Want to Communicate with the Other Side?

Linnea Star brings through exact and detailed information from people’s lost relatives, and even acts as a conduit for the deceased loved ones to show themselves, or images they want to communicate, such as pictures on cell phones.

1st Dec. Friday Night Unity of Charlottesville Lecture 6:30-8:30
2nd Dec. Saturday Morning Unity of Charlottesville Workshop 9 to 12:30

2nd Dec. Saturday evening Open Heart Yoga Studio Lecture 6:30 to 8:30

3rd Dec. Sunday Morning Bridge Between the World retreat center Lecture 9-12:30
3rd Dec. Sunday Morning Bridge Between the World retreat center Workshop 1:30 to 4
3rd Dec. Sunday evening workshop in Open Heart Yoga Studio 6:30 to 8:30
Tickets: $35 Lectures $55 Workshop

Linnea Star is coming to Charlottesville and Kezwick, Virginia 1-3 Dec.

Metaphysical Lecture:
In this lecture, Linnea Star will talk about the history of mediumship and its origin, that goes back to ancient Egypt. You will get to know about some of the famous mediums in the early years, such as the Edgard Cayce, Eileen Garrett, Arthur Ford and more. You will learn metaphysical terminology, and what it is like to be a medium. The event includes a demonstration, where Linnea will receive messages for willing participants, and get to know what their beloved on the other side want to tell them.

Linnea Star - One of the most amazing mediums today.
Workshop Spirit Photography and Crystal Readings:
In this workshop with Linnea, you will get to experience Spirit Photography and Crystal Readings. Bring a cellphone with a photo of someone you love, living or dead. Hardcopy works fine too. Linnea will read images in the personal photos of everyone present. Sometimes these images become visible also for you. You will also get to experience the Mystical Crystal experience. You will get to hold an opaque crystal ball, thereby connecting with the energies of the other side. A cellphone picture will then be taken, and images in the crystal ball will be interpreted by Linnea. Often, everyone present can see these images.

Do you see The Blessed Mother in the Crystal? I do.

Find out more about Linnea Star at:

Tuesday, November 21, 2017

November Moments

You know those moments, when time stretches wide and the air thickens with small glimpses of glittering electricity – even though you seemingly do nothing out of the ordinary? Perhaps you just do that one little extra act – like lighting wax-candles in the evening, picking some flowers and arranging them on your kitchen table, or watching the trees turn into shapes and faces, blinking at you from leaves. All while you breathe deep and want nothing more than this particular moment in time.
I bet you do. Sometimes, for me, those moments are accompanied by flashing dots of royal blue, happily showing themselves off around the face of a loved one during soft conversation, dancing over crystals, polished sea stones or a flowering plant. Flashing over whatever I happen to give my full attention to. Whatever I happen to gaze into.

Have you had this happen to you?

The phenomena with the flashing blue dots started occurring for me almost two decades ago. At first, I thought maybe I had gotten some rare eye-disease. But I never went to a doctor with this curious problem, as it wasn’t really a problem at all. It only happened when I felt totally at peace, almost serene. And I had my doubts that trying to explain this to an eye-doctor would have no other effect than a blank stare and the suggestion I should see a psychiatrist instead. So, I just let it be. And through all these years I never read or heard any kind of explanation to my “condition.” Not until just recently, when I read a book by a friend that described the same thing, royal blue color included, and referred to it as a result of reaching a “higher vibration.” Deeper vibration would probably be more my language, or maybe even more accurate, deeper connection. Language aside, this author and I mean the same thing. What a relief it is to get confirmation of some of your more queer experiences!
A deeper connection involves those moments – blue dots in the air or not – when you, perhaps a loved one, and your surroundings become enhanced, full of spirit, and there is no telling where you end, and the world begins. All is safe, and you communicate with all, beyond words.

At the end of November, Thanksgiving is celebrated in the United States. We do not have this holiday where I come from. Actually, we have no holidays of significance in November, and I always enjoyed that fact. As far as social obligations and expectations go, November is a pause in time - a time of many pauses, full of blue sparkling dots shivering over tea-cups and loved ones alike.
However, I cannot think of any better reason to celebrate a holiday than to give thanks. What a great invention. Thanks to the United States for the idea, and also for the delicious turkey, sweet potatoes and cranberry sauce. What a treat!

Bringing the month of no-holiday, and the month of giving thanks together I think November is a beautiful pause in time for us all – reflecting on all we have, and giving time to the small moments. That may be the big moments, when all is said and done.
Whatever you do this month, there’s always lots to give thanks for. I give thanks especially for those moments, when the air thickens with spirit, and I connect to all.
I wish you many precious moments this month, however you choose to spend them. Do enjoy all the reflections of life available in this issue. They are as soft and intense as November itself. And as always, I give thanks for you co-existing with me, Michael and The Echo World.

Editorial by Sofia Karin Axelsson from November issue of The Echo World.
Images: Courtesy of Pixabay free downloads.

Monday, October 9, 2017

Caverns - the Deeper We Go

The deeper we go
into autumn
the deeper 
we fall.

Fall into caverns of endless silence,
evenly cool,
calming our bones. 
No sound, no sound,
but a chatter-box guide.
Never mind, never mind.
We move him out of time.

The rocks still my mind,
while the cavern  opens  
her generous crevasses

Stone gods engaged 
in slow conversation

Silence, silence
behind it all.
Silence -
and total darkness.

The beginning of visions,
large and small,
sparkling like underground stars,
on our deep under walk.

Photographs: From Endless Caverns, Virginia, by Sofia Karin Axelsson.

Monday, September 11, 2017

The Panther who Jumped over the Moon

The Panther who Jumped over the Moon. You might have heard the story. It is very old. So old indeed, you have to listen closely, just before you fall asleep, or when the firewood crackle, or when grace touches your heart at that exact moment you thought you were utterly alone and realize - just as the sun-rays of dawn (or sun-rays of dusk, or rays of moonlight, or starlight - it matters not) touches the surface of the coffee in your coffee-cup (or the surface of your tea, your water, your wine, your rum -it matters not ) - that you might have heard the tale. But if this has not happened to you lately, this is how the story goes.

Panther was black and fiercesome. No one hunted like him, no animal was his like in stalking, sneaking and moving like a shadow, no one's bite was as strong. For a long time Panther took pride in his superior abilities. To be honest, why shouldn't he?

One day Panther was resting by the river, sun-dappled fur warm and sleek as he gloriously licked sweet blood drops from his paws. Suddenly, he heard movements in the grass, small flickery movements, nothing for him to be concerned with, this was to small a prey for him. He also heard chatter. Mice chatter.

"Listen," said one mouse quite high-pitched. "I know you're adventurous, but this is just silly. You cannot reach the moon, even in that ridiculous suit."

Panther pierced his yellow eyes and saw, to his surprise, a mouse dressed in a feather suite, carrying a kite over his head.

"Of course I can," said the brave, little mouse, "anyone can do anything he sets his mind to. Anyway, how will you know if you haven't tried."

Panther watched as the strange mouse started to climb a tall pine tree. The feathers got caught, the mouse struggled with his kite, but somehow managed to keep climbing, while his mouse friend watched nervously from the ground. Panther was curious now, holding his breath when the mouse swayed, cleansing and un-cleansing his paws when the mouse lost his grip and got hold again. Watching intently as the mouse climbed higher and higher up in the pine tree. Finally,the mouse reached the top of the pine tree, and it just so happened that the moon rose in this moment, full and round, quivering like a welcoming mother, illuminating the mouse from behind as he stood high on the highest branch of the great pine.

“Here I go!” yelled the mouse in the tree and threw himself out. “Here I gooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooo ….”

He fell like a leaf, or perhaps like a small stone would fall, would the stone for some reason decide to throw himself out of a high tree. The mouse landed in a soft, wet pile of buffalo poo. The mouse waiting on the ground put his small paws over his mount, while Panther held his breath. There wasn't a sound to be heard in the forest until the brave little mouse started howling and spitting buffalo poo out of his mouth. “Hey! That was fun!” he exclaimed. “Though it didn't work,”he continued, a bit more subdued, looking longingly up on the moon.

“Oh, don't think about it,” said his loyal friend, as he ruched forward and helped his friend up to his feet. “I've heard from the most dependable sources, that not even Panther can jump all the way to the moon.” He put an arm around the brave, little mouse, ignoring broken feathers and poo as well.

Panther watched them walk away. Soon he was alone with the moon hovering over the pine tree as his only company. From that day, nothing felt quite the same for Panther.

Stalking and moving like a shadow still had its joy. How could it not? Crushing bones, the delicious flavor of meat and blood still created surges of excitement through Panther's body. Still, ever so often, Panther found himself resting his head on his paws at night, staring longingly at the moon.

As time went by Panther's movements became slower, the strength of his bite weaker and white hairs grew around his whiskers, showing age. One night he fell asleep, his fur illuminated by the light of an especially pregnant, full moon. It just so happened that he was on that same riverbank where the brave little mouse had tried to fly. The moon was hanging over that same pine tree, that now was even higher and prouder. Panther woke up seeing the moon hanging there. “Now or never,” he thought, not sure where the thought came from. Neither did he fully understand this new strength that filled him. He rose and felt better than he had in his most vigorous days. He leaped up the pine tree, dug his claws deep into the bark as he went up, and up, until he finally got to the top and there he …. jumped. Like he never jumped before.

He flew threw the sky, not to, but over the moon, stars were flashing around him. “Oh, yes,” said Panther as he found his way, as he stalked and moved like a shadow among the stars. And the moon smiled gently beneath him.

Picture: Courtesy of Pixabay free download.

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Heavens on Earth

The beauty of the place Michael and I live, the place we call Magic Land, is absolutely striking this time of year: at the end of a dirt road, with the creek flowing by creating a constant symphony of moving water, the intense green nuances of the grass on the field, and of the trees standing tall and proud all around. Deer are coming closer to the cabin than ever, looking for apples from the apple trees. Fireflies flash their mating lights in the evening. First they appear as small golden lights over the field and garden, later into the evening they seem bluish-white, like sparkles from a very playful Faery Godmother. It feels like we are living in a flourescent green, benevolent heart-chakra. 
Some nights ago we sat on the porch and the rainclouds rolled in. But just as sudden as the rain had started it stopped, and the sun shone over the treetops. Appaering in this weather-drama was a perfect rainbow, stretching over Magic Land. At the very same time, on both sides of the rainbow flashed electric white lightning. I have never seen anything like it. This was two nights after I came back from an almost month-long stay in Sweden. I felt like a happy kid who was thrown a welcome-home-surprise-party.

Subtle Sweden
 Sweden has another kind of beauty, more subtle, with softer colors, winds that whisper silently in the birch trees, lakes and rivers that glitter on sunny days. Even the birds sing differently, more melodious, but also more quiet. As if they are afraid of disturbing the gentle harmony of the land.
On my trip home from Sweden I got stuck a couple of hours extra at Zurich Airport because the flight that was going to take me to Washington, D.C. was delayed. Those were long hours, eager as I was to get home to the love of my life who was waiting for me. They were also long because Zurich Airport, as most airports, is an artificial world, with seemingly endless rows of stores with luxuries that no-one really needs, and a chemical level in the air that makes it hard to breathe. I hadn’t gotten my gate announced, so I walked back and forth in this strange world, passing the same stores over and over. Interestingly enough almost all sitting possibilities are gone in this in-between area, if you don’t pay loads of money for food or beverage in the neon-lighted restaurants. You are not supposed to sit down when you are there – you are supposed to spend money on over-priced goods. 

Magic Land
Zurich Airport is also, as all airports, a place where people pass through: nervous, excited, scared, or happy, depending on what is waiting for them at their destination. Some are sad (perhaps they left someone they love,) some are joyous, having vacation, leisure or adventure waiting for them at the end of the flight. 

It occurred to me, that at this time in my life, being stuck in this airport was like being in limbo, knowing that heaven on earth was waiting for me at my destination, and also knowing that heaven on earth was a place I had just left. Only there, in that artificial waiting-ground, did I feel cast out of heaven, isolated from my worlds, utterly lonely, even though hundreds of people were on the move around me. I thought that maybe this is what hell would be like for me. Then I thought that if I had to be in hell for some extra hours to be able to move between my very own heavens on earth ... well, 
then so be it. 

Birches, Sweden and rainbow over Magic Land
I got out of hell ... I mean, I got out of Zurich Airport. I flew over the Atlantic. I got to go home. I’m with my love, in a place I love, thinking fondly of the most recent memories of another place that is also my home. I think about how lucky I am, how rich I am, who can say that I haven’t only found one home, but several. That there is no place I would rather be, than the place I am right now. And how lucky I am that I can say that there was no place I would rather have been, than home in Sweden some weeks ago. 

I have found my very own heavens on earth. The only thing I pray for, is that I do not have to spend too many more hours of my life at Zurich Airport.

My parents garden, Sweden
I wrote this editorial for The Echo World, July issue 2017, when I just came home from a beautiful trip to Sweden. That was several weeks ago - but the conclusions still hold true.

Photographs by: top - Lina Ekstrand, the rest - Sofia Karin Axelsson

Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Fly Higher - Mantras for Ascension FREE download

Four days left  for a beautiful, cleansing Free audio download Mantras for Ascension.
Until the 30th of June 2017, you still have the chance so don't miss out.

The FREE download gift from Maureen J. St. Germain for the June issue of The Echo World is Mantras for Ascension.
Go to and sign up for your download of these beautiful mantras.

Below you can find my review of Mantras for Ascension, from the May issue of The Echo World.

Mantras for Ascension by Maureen J. St. Germain
review by Sofia Karin Axelsson The Echo World, May issue 2017

Mantras for Ascension contains two healing chants, especially made to clear out old emotional pain, that can hold us back from experiencing our lives at the fullest level.

The first is the Hathor chant, “El Kar Leem Om.” This is an ancient Egyptian chant. Each sound represents one of the four sacred elements: El is earth, Ka is fire, Leem is water and Om is space or air. The elements are the building blocks of the universe, and this chant is supposed to help us get to a place where we can feel reverence for all the possibilities, and get closer to creation as a holy place. Beautiful, female, translucent voices repeat the chant.The second chant is Kadosh, Kadosh, Kadosh, Adenoi, Tsebayoth. This is a Kabbalistic chant, said to activate the grids in our bodies, and help us clear out “All that is not God.” This chant is built with a blend between female voices and a background of calm, supporting male voices.

So the big question is then – does it work? Let me say this. Late in the evening, with a deadline coming up, I started feeling a little low energy and discouraged. After listening to the thirty-five minute soundtrack I felt lighter, my head was clearer and I experienced that tingly feeling in and around me that we do when life is just the way it’s supposed to be: sweet, interesting, in the present and connected to the world as it is.

Find out more about Maureen J. St. Germain at:

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

The World Tree, or “The Axis of Evil”

There is a World Tree at the center of the universe, a core of creation, from which the cosmos is organized: there’s an “above,” a “below,” and a “middle.” The middle is where humans live, together with all our relatives on Earth, together with seen and unseen forces. Or, so many indigenous peoples around the globe believe. From the Desana people in the Colombian Amazon, to the Sandawe people in Africa, to the Yakut people in Russia, the motif of this World Tree as an organizing principle of all-there-is can be found. The tree is the basis of creation, the place where humans can communicate with the gods. Today many pagans, new agers, and spiritual people have adopted, or re-constructed, this belief as a point of reference. With this worldview it is easy to see existence as structured, meaningful, and animated. All has soul, and all is connected. The motif of the World Tree always suited me personally. I use it as a way of orienting myself in many worlds. The tree makes it easy to know what is up, and what is down, however far into magical realms I may travel.

For the longest time, the worldview of the scientific community has been in opposition to that of the World Tree, or any other “primitive” ideas of a structured universe. Creation started with the Big Bang and the cosmos - with all its life-forms - isn’t anything but the result of random acts, sometimes ending in unprobable things like DNA and advanced cultures. Creation then, is a mere stroke of luck, so to say. But alas, some years ago scientific evidence started pouring in that indicated that there actually is something at the center of the universe: an axis, a polarized force, actually even a structuring force. Scientists quickly named this something “the axis of evil,” (with an unfortunate correlation to politics). This naming might be a result of the infamous, grim scientific sense of humor, but it also reflects the shadow side of a purely scientific worldview: a reluctance to admit that there might be anything else than a mechanical, random cosmos with no meaning. I do not blame scientists for this. It is their job to scrutinize every hard fact.

Meanwhile, if we are to look for meaning, we have to turn to more spiritual ways of moving in the world. The shadow side of such a way of moving is, of course, to view anything as meaningful, as well as the lure of claiming to have found deep truths, based on little more than a whim and a prayer. When we move in the vast space of spiritual beliefs, we have to scrutinize what we experience in a different way than the scientific community. We have no one to trust but ourselves. As the writers and wisdom keepers of The Echo World keep insisting, be it Terry-Cole Whittaker, Maureen J. St. Germain, or Frank DeMarco, we all have to keep listening to our inner voice, find what feels right to us, or ask our Higher Self for guidance. If we do not, it is easy to fall victim to those who try to tell us that they know better than we do, what is true and right. There are many cults and religious fanatics out there who would love to take over our life, if we are not careful.

Remember, whatever ideas and opinions presented in our magazine The Echo World, or that you read anywhere else, only you know if they ring true and are meaningful for you. Only you know if they fit into your personal view of the World Tree.

This is a slightly edited version of my editorial in The Echo World June issue 2017. Top and bottom with courtesy of Pixabay free download. Centre image is an Ash tree in my parents garden in Sweden, taken by me: Sofia Karin Axelsson.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

FREE Meditation - A Gift for the Blood

I hope you didn't miss the article in the May issue of The Echo World by Maureen J. St. Germain:
What Is the Purpose of Blood and Why Should I Care? 

Obviously this is not your everyday subject. The blood of the human body has life-giving properties,carries fluids and removes waste. Yet there is a spiritual significance and that’s what this article is about. It’s important to be aware, and know you can do something about it – if and when you need it! ...
- Maureen J. St. Germain

You find the whole article at The Echo World digital version of the magazine, p. 24.

With it comes a FREE gift for cleansing the blood. A beautiful meditation for anyone you need may need this help. Go to: and get your free download.

Monday, May 1, 2017

There Are Only Two Kinds of People in the World

There is a popular saying-game, especially from know-it-alls that enjoy one- liners. It goes like this:
“There are only two kinds of people in the world … ” fill in whatever you heard someone state most recently. It is probably a nice feeling to categorize the whole world’s population, and have some kind of sense that it is easy to pin everybody into two massive pigeonholes. I should know. I played the game myself. Just for fun, let’s try it out.

“There are only two kinds of people in the world, those who want nothing but to be normal, and those that want nothing but to be special.” Or how about this? “There are only two kinds of people in the world, those that are desperately trying to fit in, and those that are desperately trying to stand out.”
I think that the need to fit in is deeply rooted in our cores. We are, after all, pack animals, created for cooperation, totally dependent on each other. The fear of being thrown out of the pack is a real fear, insofar that not being part of a group can be a direct threat to our physical survival and our overall well being. I also think – reflected in myths all over the world – that the need to stand out, to be our own, to go on the hero quest and be the savior of all, is just as deeply rooted. We are basically made to evolve beyond mere everyday business. 

The fear of being different, and the need to be special, is not exclusive to people moving in areas that we sometimes refer to as alternative. But working with personal spirituality, trying to be part of creating a future-society built on more sound values, can certainly make these questions more visible. How many of our readers, as well as my spiritual friends and acquaintances, haven’t I heard over the years struggling with this issue? It’s easy to fall into loneliness, and worse, it is very tempting to fall into vanity, letting the “special,” translate into “better than.”

There’s a movie I like, since I tend to like most movies that have a mystical twist, called The Devil’s Advocate. The setup is simple. Young, upcoming, but small-town lawyer finds himself in a moral dilemma in the courtroom. He knows the man he’s representing is guilty of an awful crime, and has evidence to prove it. Will the lawyer continue to represent his client, or renounce the case? The lawyer makes the less moral choice, and suddenly his life takes of. He’s offered a position i a big-time law firm, with all the luxury and power going with it that you can think off. The man he’s working for turns out to be the Devil, brilliantly played by Al Pacino. If the young lawyer only gives the Devil his soul, he can have all he ever dreamed of. In the end, the man chooses to leave, finds himself magically back in the courtroom where he strayed off, and can make the right choice. He officially declares he cannot defend the man he knows is guilty. The courtroom goes wild. A lawyer with a conscience!? Outside the courtroom he’s approached by a journalist, who wants to feature this unique and heroic man. The lawyer accepts. The journalist turns to the camera, transforms into the Devil and says, “Vanity, my favorite sin.”

We do not have to claim that we are enlightened, or better, just because we choose a path which feels right to us. Of course there is a price to setting ourselves apart. But there are prices to everything. If we do not choose to be who we came to be, we might, for example, lose our souls.

There are only 7.5 billion kinds of people on the earth. Each unique, different from the rest, and at the same time each one of us shares similar struggles, joys and victories.

This piece was first published as the Editorial of May issue 2017 of  The Echo World

Thursday, March 16, 2017

"Antidote Affirmations," FREE for Download. "Make Your Year a Good One!"

Author and practical mystic Maureen St. Germain shares a FREE gift of "Antidote Affirmations," called Make Your Year a Good One! CLICK HERE.

For those of you who have read Maureen's article How Do You Keep on When You're Tired of Trying, in The Echo World March issue 2017, knows the fascinating story of the young mother who lost all faith in herself and where her life was going. You have also read about how Maureen created Antidote Affiramtions for this woman - and about the amazing story that unraveled (For those of you who haven't read it you can find the March issue online - Maureen's article is on p.16).

Maureen is sharing these "Antidote Affirmation," FREE during all of March. They are created with a certain, powerful breathing exercise to make the most of the affirmation magic. Take part. CLICK HERE and make a change.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

East of the Sun and West of the Moon

When I write this I have just woken up. The moon is shining through the window, creating a path on the bedroom floor in otherworldly white – that cold moonlight that touches on blue. It’s five in the morning, and I’m waiting for coffee, as Michael is an early riser, and makes much better coffee than me. While I wait, and slowly wake up, I watch the path of the moon. I’m only halfway out of the dream-world. I come to think of a fairytale, a Norwegian folktale called “East of the Sun and West of the Moon,” that I read often when I was a kid. This is a story with a Beauty and the Beast theme; it includes meetings and partings, deals and deal-breakers, and centers around a heroine whose curiosity brings the story forward, and whose persistence seals the deal. She makes a long journey to find the castle that lies east of the sun and west of the moon, where she can find her lover and break his curse, so that they can be together.

 Fairytales and folktales are built on the language of the magical world, the language of the spirit and the soul. I never grew out of fairytales. Instead, I simply added a somewhat more sophisticated understanding of what they tried to say, by immersing myself in symbology, mythology, dream-interpretation, Jungian psychology, and different magical systems from around the world, as well as ceremonies and rituals. All aiming to create a language to bring ourselves closer to ourselves.
The moon-path on the bedroom floor – for a brief moment – brings me to that place, the castle east of the sun and west of the moon. A place we have to go through many trials to reach, a place where our soul speaks clearly. 

There are many languages and paths to get there. They are all a life-long learning. They are all spiritual. They all contain the knowledge that there is more to life than what we see with our physical eyes and hear with our physical ears. In The Echo World we try to create a space for these voices – be they the voice of the healer or the reader of Akashic records, the persons who have chosen the road of Tantra, or astrology. We have many great voices and themes this issue: for example, Margot Anand who finds her way to enlightenment through sexual practices, Simon Hayes who works with spirit guides and energy-healing, and Steven Cardoza who works with ancient Chinese medicine. 

Most of us strive to go to that place of knowing, of feeling, of being close to soul, as much as we can in our everyday life. To find our way to the castle that lies east of the sun and west of the moon. To find our way to those moments when the natural world speaks to us and makes us whole, be it misty rain on our face, a warming sun or a moon-path shining on our floor early in the morning. 
I get my coffee. I’m waking up, getting ready for the day with all its fixings and dealings and sometimes tedious details and pressing deadlines. But I will try to hold on to that feeling, that language of soul, that touch of the divine, and bring some of it with me into the day. Because the castle east of the sun and west of the moon is always with us, waiting within us, and never lost. It’s only the path there we have to figure out, by being curious and persistent. Any path works. Be inspired and find one that works for you.

This text first appeared as my Editorial in The Echo World, March issue 2017.

Illustrations top and bottom by Kay Nielsen illustrations for East of the Sun West of the Moon, first published 1914. Photo middle courtesy of Pxabay - 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Idun Says - It's Spring

Idun says - It's Spring, time for rejuvenation.

Time for art - wild and bold. 

Time for stories - yet untold.

Sap is rising. 

Inspiration just started flying.

Seeds rest on the altar still.

Idun knows the secret of life: be young, be young, be young, 

(It's all in your mind.) 

and you're treasure chest will fill ...

Always open, always new. 

When fancy strikes you.

Take a practical view.

Be clear. 

No need to hesitated with nothing to loose.

Whatever happens - all you can be is you.

You are the miracle.

Ask Idun to hold your hand.

Don't fear, don't fear,

nothing can go wrong.

When you give  voice to the most precious of gifts.

Your very own song.

Photographs: "Every Goddess in every woman - Sofia Karin Axelsson as Idun."

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

The Telling of Stories Creates the Real World

The telling of stories 
creates the real world.

Alberto Manguel

I live in stories, with stories, by stories. Telling stories, taking part of stories is the fabric that defines my world. Since the days of fairy-tales - a childhood fixation that I never quite left - the importance of stories has just grown. Today I choose stories for The Echo World on a monthly basis, edit my second book, and write new stories - about life and death - whenever I can carve out the time.

Stories can conquer fear you know.
They can make the heart bigger.

Ben Okri

My husband, author and co-publisher of The Echo World, Michael Peter Langevin, shares this passion with me. He is full of stories, they seep out of his pores, leaving a scent of exotic flowers, ancient ruins and rainforest moist lingering in the air. 

We are experimenting with telling stories. We film interviews, on the porch, in the cabin that we fondly call The Tree-House. In this interview Michael tells tales about traveling with teenagers in the Amazon rainforest, meeting shamans and experiencing real magic beyond most people's imagination. These stories are part of the fabric that has shaped Michael's life. The interview starts off in Michael's book Secrets of the Amazon Shamans: Healing Traditions from South America.


Great stories happen to those
who can tell them.

Ira Glass

Photos from The Tree-House by Sofia Karin Axelsson
Film by Sofia Karin Axelsson

Friday, February 24, 2017

A Gift from the Angels - This Is a FREE Download from Maureen St. Germain

Meet the Archangels. 
Enjoy beautiful music and the voice of Maureen St. Germain. 
Make miracles happen!

Many people that are on a spiritual quest, and have dedicated themselves to the life-long work of personal growth, feel drawn to Angels especially, and Archangels specifically. For me they have never been highest on my list of the multitude of spiritual guides and helpers out there. Nevertheless, I have a sweet time every time I listen to Rainbow Angel Meditation – Meditation to the Archangels, by and with Maureen St. Germain. Perhaps this is because she presents the Archangels in an easy manner, associated with the seven rainbow colors - the seven rays - making them approachable even for an old heathen as myself.

One of the privileges of publishing The Echo World is that we often collaborate with our writers and authors, and they offer gifts to our readers that wouldn't be accessible otherwise. Below is a gift from Maureen St. Germain and the Archangels.

This is what you do to access this download:

Scroll down to Meditation to the Archangels, click on purchase MP3 Download and enter code ANGEL.


Image: Cover of Meditation to the Archangels - Copyright Maureen St. Germain.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Love - What Is It?

“I don't do romance,” I stated early on to Michael, when we were just getting to know each other. Something he mildly, with a bit of a jest, reminds me of on a regular basis.

So, I'll admit, I softened up a bit on the “not doing romance” over the years. Romance can be a neat thing, if done right. I think that what I really meant, is that I have little faith in the classic, western world idea about romance. After all, the most well-known story about romance we have, is about two overly tensed teenagers who die at the end. Which is telling. Western culture overall, seems to have a very vague notion of what romance means, and especially what it's supposed to lead to – love. There's usually a sunset, a marriage, or death, and not much else.

The idea of romance, and its correlation to love, as described in the western world, is seldom enlightening. The idea of love, it seems, is often confused with egocentric, overcharged longings and desires. Love, if separated from these childish notions, must be something grander, obviously. But what is it?

One of my favorite books on the subject matter is written by activist and feminist Bell Hooks, namely All About Love: New Visions, published 2001. In it Hooks makes the case that the idea of love is so confused in the western world, and so inter-meshed with power-structures, that it can include totally inappropriate behaviors, such as control and abuse, which can't possibly have anything to do with the concept of love per se. We would be better off, means Hooks, if we thought of love less as a feeling, and more as action, less as a noun, and more as a verb.

I agree.

One of my favorite descriptions of love is made by M. Scott Peck in his book The Road Less Traveled, first published in 1978. He defines love as: “... the will to extend one's self for the sake of nurturing one's self, or another person's, spiritual growth.”

Thus, if we embrace this notion, it means we have to put aside our carefully crafted plans of what we want someone to be for us, and instead concentrate on what they want to be for themselves. At the same time, we have to surround ourselves with people who want to nurture our spiritual growth. That is, who want to help us become as much as we can be.

Somewhere in the tension between the nurturing of other people's growth, and our own growth, is where the great adventure begins. Somewhere in the space of mutual support there is room for love. For me.

To see people you love take on the world, and grow and prosper, to celebrate their victories, and hold them close, body and soul, when they struggle … could there be anything more satisfying in the world? Not for me. And I'm a rich woman, having people in my life that do the same for me.

Perhaps, one of these cold February days, I’ll even buy some oysters, pop that champagne, and play Aretha Franklin's “Natural Woman” on repeat. Because romance, if done right, can be a great way to show your appreciation for that one person who shares all your victories, and all your defeats, every day, and every night.

From Your Editors - February issue of The Echo World
By Sofia Karin Axelsson

Photographs: top and middle - courtesy Pixabay. Bottom - Sofia Karin Axelsson, coverpic for The Echo World, from ceremony at Rachel Mann PhD.