Sunday, December 21, 2014

Resiliency in Action – The Story of Phoenixville and the 2014 Firebird Festival

by Elizabeth Venart

The town of Phoenixville has been hosting an annual Firebird Festival for ten years. The ceremonial lighting of a magnificent 30-foot sculpture of a wooden phoenix is the pinnacle of the festivities, which also include music, crafts, and a parade through town. Amidst dancing and drumming and in front of crowds of thousands, the enormous bird is set ablaze and burned down to ashes.

An Ancient Myth that Speaks to Phoenixville’s History
The ceremony dramatizes the mythical Phoenix Rising, a sacred firebird that lives for 500-1,000 years until it builds itself a nest where it meets a fiery end. From the ashes rises a new, young, or re-born, bird that lives as long as its original self. 1 During the Phoenixville ceremony, small ceramic “peace birds,” which have been created by community members of all ages, are placed at the base of the sculpture and fired in the kiln of its flames. Like the mythical phoenix, these little birds carry the promise of new life. Twelve months later, from their ashes, the phoenix stands stories high and is burned again.

Phoenixville organizers created the ceremonial burning of the as a way to honor their town’s resurgence. Phoenixville named itself after the Phoenix Iron Works and had a strong iron and steel manufacturing history until 1976 when the renamed Phoenix Steel Corporation closed due to rising competition and falling demand. Phoenixville experienced a period of tremendous struggle, yet it faced these challenges with creativity and determination.

The Firebird Festival celebrates Phoenixville’s rebirth and, like Phoenixville itself, it has grown steadily over the past decade. This December 6th was scheduled to be the 11th Annual Firebird Festival, with predicted attendance of over 12,000 people. However, in the early morning on that Saturday, vandals burned down the giant phoenix statue that artists and builders had spent months constructing. In a true testament to the strength of this local community, volunteers donated their time, money, and wood to aid in the heroic reconstruction of a new Firebird in time for the evening’s festival.

A Wonderful Metaphor for Resiliency
Initially horrified and saddened by the news that the beautiful sculpture had been destroyed, I was profoundly moved to see how people rallied behind the event organizers and actively worked to create the new structure. In this photo, taken that rainy evening among a large crowd of enthusiastic supporters, I see the phoenix rise and a resilient community further empowered.

Life will undoubtedly throw curveballs our way. We strengthen our resiliency not by avoiding the inevitable bumps and detours along the journey but by growing to face them – and transform ourselves in the process. The people of Phoenixville demonstrated the vibrancy of their resilience this December. I was honored to witness and be a part of it.   

To learn more about the event, check out this article by NBC10 who covered the story, focusing on the outpouring of support that insured the 11thAnnual Firebird Festival would still happen [Insert link to:].

1 Phoenix Mythology,

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Staying Relaxed during the holidays?

by Delia Nessim

It seems ironic that on Thanksgiving Day we give thanks for all the riches and bounty in our lives, and then the very next day is the “biggest shopping day of the year”. If we truly believe we are blessed, why the mad dash to keep buying more? 

While we may enjoy holiday shopping and even derive satisfaction from choosing the perfect gifts for friends and family, this time of year can also bring tremendous stress. There are the crowds, the extra time required for cooking and shopping, holiday-themed school activities, and the financial strain of extra money being spent. Add to the list all the expectations we have to make everything perfect for the holidays – undoubtedly strengthened by Hallmark movies featuring a large, happy family gathered around the table enjoying each other’s company. Given all this, the holiday season can certainly take its toll on us physically and mentally.

When we are frustrated or stressed, our clarity and mental capacity are diminished. Our immune system is compromised. It is easier to have accidents, make more mistakes, and use poor judgment. Maybe we didn’t need to buy that third present for our niece, bake pies for three different gatherings, or offer to pick up Uncle Walter at the airport when he was okay catching a cab.  In the midst of juggling all the competing demands of the season, we may lose our perspective on what is most important, spending too much time, money, and energy on things and activities that deplete us rather than bring us meaning and joy. 

During this holiday season, it is critical to make our emotional health a priority. Here are a few simple strategies to help you stay relaxed as you move through the coming month:

·      Wake up a little earlier than usual to meditate, read an uplifting poem, or go for a quiet walk in nature.
·      Focus on your breath, noticing its reliable in and out, deepening it whenever you are feeling stressed during the day. 
·      Build yoga, qi gong, or some form of regular exercise into your daily routine.
·      Practice laughter yoga – laughing at any time for no reason at all – to help you keep perspective and a sense of humor.

·      Bring a feeling of love into your heart by focusing on your gratitude for the people and animals dear to you.

Delia Nessim, MFT, is a Marriage and Family Therapist with a private practice at The Resiliency Center in Flourtown, PA. In addition to individual, couples, and family counseling, she offers a group for divorced woman and leads workshops on Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT/Tapping). She is also trained in clinical hypnosis and offers individual sessions in both EFT and hypnosis. For more information, see her website at 

Generosity in the Season of Giving

by Elizabeth Venart

Generosity is a big part of the holiday season. Movies often highlight the theme with humor and poignancy. In A Christmas Carol, Scrooge is a curmudgeon who never cared for anyone but himself, yet, by the end of the film, he is transformed into an openhearted, generous, and kind man. Miracle on 34th Street concludes with Macy’s Santa “Kris Kringle” delivering a desired new home to the cynical young girl, causing her to believe in magic after all.  It’s a Wonderful Life shows an entire community of people coming together to help save the beloved main character, a giving man who, in his desperation, had doubted the value of his own life.

Invitations to be generous in December are numerous. Christmas, Hanukkah, and Kwanzaa are celebrations with distinctly different origins and traditions – yet all include the exchange of gifts. Toys for Tots collection sites are scattered along our commutes to and from work. Men dressed as Santa greet shoppers as they enter stores, ringing bells and asking for money for the Salvation Army. Adopt-a-Family programs like the one organized by the Kelly Ann Dolan Memorial Fund ( invite us to buy clothes, presents, and other needed items for struggling families in our community. Nonprofit organizations count on people being willing to do a little more for others this time of year. And, consistently, we prove them right.

What prompts us to be more generous now?  Is it simply the season? Does the month of December (like the ghosts of Christmas Past, Present, and Future) have the power to make us a little softer, a little kinder, and a little more willing to give? Probably not. Perhaps, instead, we have within us a natural desire to be giving and, between Thanksgiving and the end of the year, we simply receive and answer more invitations to be generous.

Our natural generosity is evident in the outpouring of support that comes following any local, national, or international tragedy. It can also be seen in the behavior of young children, expressing joy as they help bake cookies, make presents, and share gifts with those they love. The drive to be kind is an intrinsic part of being human. While sometimes it may be thwarted or distorted by painful early experiences, the vast majority of us continue to be kind. Giving is natural, and being generous feels good.

This season, as you consider how you wish to express your generosity, you may want to reflect on the kind of giving – and receiving – that feels most joyful and satisfying to you. Consider being mindful and intentional with your giving, not simply from the perspective of “what would I like to give” but equally evaluating, “What are the ways I can be giving that will also be uplifting and nourishing for me?”

Giving mindfully doesn’t involve spending more than we have or overextending ourselves and ending up depleted or sick. Mindful generosity asks us to acknowledge giving and receiving as an exchange – and to be intentional with where and how we direct our energy. Often, the best gifts are gifts of time, thoughtfulness, and companionship. Consider baking a loaf of cranberry bread for a neighbor, making soup for a sick friend, extending an invitation to dinner, making a book of free babysitting coupons for a friend who is a single parent, or connecting by phone with a long-distance family member.

As you contemplate the many ways to be generous this year, consider also giving to someone very deserving: You. Be kind and gentle with yourself. Lower your expectations to “find the perfect gift” and consider instead carving out time for yourself to simply be. Take a walk in nature. Spend time with people who make you laugh. Sleep in. Go to bed early. Listen to your favorite music. Re-read a beloved book. Spend time enjoying the dark, sitting in candlelight and sipping a cup of hot tea.
The joy and magic of the holiday season comes into focus more clearly when we listen to and honor our own needs, cultivate a spirit of generosity with ourselves and others, and slow down to fully experience the present moment. Today and throughout the year ahead, I wish all of us true presence, mindful generosity, happiness, and deep, abiding peace.

Elizabeth Venart, M.Ed., LPC, is the Founder and Director of The Resiliency Center and a Licensed Professional Counselor who offers individual, couples, and group counseling. Her focus is on enhancing resiliency, cultivating compassion, and supporting people in healing through comprehensive, trauma-informed care. Elizabeth provides clinical supervision and EMDR consultation to therapists seeking to deepen their understanding of the complexity of human struggles and to respond in meaningful, effective ways.  To learn more, visit her website at  

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Periscope View by Dean Solon

sitting, with an unfolding to a wider view, to a larger, broader, more extensive perspective of landscape, of mindscape.

sitting...rising above the easily a spacious view of  big sky stretching to distant a view of a vastness of ocean, opening expanding reaching out to distant a view that fills, and spills over the banks the barriers and the boundaries of our limited awareness;  is a view that transcends belief and logic and scientific theory.

ripples in the sunlit pool.
you are seeing ripples in the sunlit pool...ripples streaming from left to right...
a perfectly manifesting expressing of a spaciousness
for a seeing, in this         this         this         moment---
              that all concerns and cares
             of this world
             are ripples in the sunlit pool.
             are ripples in the sunlit pool of human time.

a raised view, looking down upon a planet whose surface is mainly water.
waves---ripples on the water---streaming on a great expanse from left to right.
all of it---all of this---attractions, distractions, all of the movement and motion, all of the light allowing a seeing of the motion, all of the expressing and embodying and manifesting of the increasing activity that is the living of the planet and is the living of you...ripples on the water.
grist for the mill.

the dance---Shiva's dance,
the rocking and rolling and swaying of zikhr (remembrance)---
the only dance there is.
ripples on the water.

it is a view of loosening the reins.
it is a way of letting go.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Exhale into Gratitude with QiGong this Thanksgiving Season By Karen Steinbrecher

With inspiration from the Rumi poem, “the Guest House”, I share my Thanksgiving story with you.  From Rumi, “This being human is a guest house.  Every morning a new arrival.”  In September, I experienced a surprise health challenge.  I fainted in my home and fell across a bookcase, hitting the floor on my forehead.  My husband found me immediately and did all the right things.  I broke my past record, having never been overnight in a hospital since birth.  Results from the many tests, X-Rays, CAT scans, etc., and bloodwork showed nothing broken and no concussion.  Low blood pressure and blood sugar may have caused this.  I was a scary sight with two black eyes and facial bruising.  With much gratitude and thankfulness I share this story.  Through all of this I practiced and danced Qigong, whether it was in my mind’s eye in the hospital bed, or physically standing and practicing the flowing movements after arriving home.  People are amazed at how well I have healed and how fortunate I am.  I agree.   Traumatic experiences and worry can cause more worry, problems, and block the energy flow.  Remembering what I tell people I practiced more Qigong.  It is so much more than the physical movements.  The slow and flowing movements send a signal to your brain, your body’s repair and maintenance center to rebuild.  Hold these thoughts, and when you are feeling “out of sorts” practice more Qigong.   A little “pre-Gong” suggestion to empower yourself with Qigong practice, is to turn off all distractions.  Say a big “thank you” to the Universe for the opportunity to be present of mind and body. This heart centered practice helps us connect to a deeper state, the stillness that holds everything together.  Qi dao Yi dao. Where the Qi goes, the mind flows.   Inhale to your heart.  Let go of the personal [worries].  Go inwards and allow your inner arms to support and enfold you with pure love.  Rest in balance in the here and now. Exhale gratitude.                                       
To quote Rumi from the “Guest House”:  Be grateful for whoever comes
                                                                   Because each has been sent
                                                                   as a guide from Beyond.

As Thanksgiving approaches I want to express and shout out my appreciation to the Universe and to all of you, my gratitude for reading my story.  Namaste.

Karen teaches QiGong on Thursdays at 2 P.M. and at 6:15 P.M. for a 1 hour class @  $10.00 per class. In addition to the WuJi QiGong movements, I am incorporating the healing TaiJi Hua Gong practice.
On Wednesday Nov. 19th Karen Steinbrecher and Dean Solon offer a Free Resiliency Center Workshop. Resiliency through Meditation and Qigong   7 P.M. – 8:30 P.M.   Come join us!

Tending to the Inner Landscape Seasonal Reflections by: John Muraco

“In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer.”
-Albert Camus

One true fact: We all deal with the changing seasons differently.  As it stands true with life’s challenges and changes, ups and downs, and ebb and flow, people have very unique and important ways in which they meet the changing of the seasons.  As we leave summer behind and replace the warm weather with cooler and more ‘biting air’, I become fascinated with the approaches that each one of us has toward this change.  Perhaps merely reading this article creates some angst for you as we delve more deeply into fall and the beginning of winter.  At the same time, others may be ecstatic knowing that they get to pull the sweater out of the closet and enjoy warming drinks, rich and filling foods, and more time indoors.  I wonder though, how can this become a season of understanding ourselves more deeply?  What things can we integrate into out lives to make the darker and colder seasons more inviting?  By witnessing natural landscape changes outdoors we find many clues to the changing landscape within us.  Perhaps with some noticing and a little motivation for self-care, we can begin to harmonize with the cooler seasonal change, as we say goodbye to the golden light of summer, and go inward.

This is a great time of the year to harvest all that was accomplished in the past five months.  No matter what your experience has been, allow yourself a chance for a deep breath and gratitude for arriving to your life today.  And look back on the accomplishments made. Perhaps for you, summer was fraught with challenge, change, and some discomforts.  Now is a great time to allow yourself some time each day for quiet reflection.  Consider journaling, working with collage, drawing, or whatever you choose.  Proceed without judgment, like nobody’s watching- this is your time.  It could be that your experience during the summer was one with many positive changes, a lot of time outdoors, late nights, and high energy.  Again, reflecting on all that has taken shape in the ‘lively’ months of spring and summer, and reaping the benefits of what life has delivered, can go a long way.  Winter can be your wind down period that allows for restoration.

Just like the falling leaves, our energy too can be downward and inward-moving as we transition into fall and winter.  And as we near Halloween, a holiday ripe with ghosts, goblins, and skeletons, I ponder the possible connection to our inner life.  Let this be a time to honor the letting go or passing of choices that might no longer serve us, or take a closer look at relationships that feel non-sustainable.  Further, give yourself freedom to share gratitude for the ones who have had positive impacts on our lives. 

Perhaps you have heard the Yogi Bajan quote “When you don’t go within, you go without.”  This is a wonderful quote to exemplify the quiet inward drawing effects of the winter season, and the nourishing benefits of withdrawing our senses from the outer world to gaze within. Challenging though it may be, the colder and darker months reflect to us, that in order to be born anew we must go within.  Inner stillness and nonjudgmental self-observation empowers us to become available to new ways of being and maybe even open to the parts of ourselves that remain unseen in our shadow.  Be it in stillness, self-reflection, or support from others, we might find there some reverence and light. By that inner light, we may gaze at the things in life that have held us back, noticing what is working and what isn't, and integrating more of what makes our hearts sing into our lives. 

Here are a couple things you can begin to do right now!!

1. Allow yourself 5 minutes (go for more if you can!) of deep belly breathing.  By placing your hand on your belly, inhale through your nose and exhale through your nose.  This will activate the parasympathetic nervous system and allow the body to relax and restore.  If your mind is wandering (that is normal!) bring your attention back to your breath or the rising of your belly into your hand.

2. Self Expression – This is totally up to you!  Maybe the way you want to express yourself is by cooking a warming soup for yourself or the meaningful people in your life.  If journaling is your thing, (or something that you want to make your thing) allow yourself some free-write sessions where you can release whatever has been on your mind.   What expands you?  What contracts you?  Making art, moving your body, and enjoying your time can be very rewarding at this time of year.

3. Cleaning out closets, pantries, drawers, etc.  It may sound funny, but again, this is a great time of the year to ‘go within’ and the nook and cranny parts of our house can be symbolic of the aspects of ourselves that could use some tending to.  It is possible that by cleaning and clearing unwanted clutter might make some space within your inner world!

Remember, there is no right or wrong way to experience anything.  There is only your way.  Be gentle on yourself, listen to your needs, and move forward in the changing seasons in whatever way feels best to you.  Please stay tuned next month when we delve into some ways to use food as medicine, learn about helpful cold & flu winter remedies and ways to beat the winter blues! 

John Muraco is an art therapist and holistic health counselor at The Resiliency Center located in Flourtown.  For more information about John or to schedule a free consultation please go to or reach him by phone at 315-329-9838.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Your Body is your Vehicle in Life. Is yours in need of a tune up?

As winter approaches we are often reminded to tune up our cars.  Fill the washer fluids, check the air in the tires, and test our brakes, all in preparation for the upcoming weather shifts that occur with seasonal changes. 
Your body is your vehicle in this life.  It has been with you since birth.  The make and model may change over the years, but it was, is, and will remain all yours.  Trade-ins are not an option.  You are the driver and your memories, beliefs, spirit, and life events are your passengers.  It’s likely you’ve even picked up a few hitchhikers over the years; the shoulds and shouldn’ts and beliefs that belong to someone else. 
So how is your car running?  Have you checked in lately to see what it needs? The best way to keep the cost of repairs down is to listen to your body and lighten the load.  Drop those hitchhikers off at their own destination, they were never yours.  Pay attention to the flashing lights and listen for the warning signs your body gives you that are saying to stop, turn here, change directions or maybe even take a rest because your engine has been revved up or in idle for too long.  Listen to your body and LIVE your life instead of spending your time and money fixing it. 
There are many wonderful ways to learn to listen to your body.  Meditation, movement, breath, and touch are just some of the ways you can tune in to your needs.  Another powerful pathway to awareness is Rubenfeld Synergy.  Rubenfeld Synergy uses talk and gentle touch to help you access the body’s wisdom and utilize the awareness that develops to generate new options for how to move through life.  Connect to your inner wisdom with a FREE 50 min. Rubenfeld Synergy session (for all new clients) by contacting Brittiney George @ 610-389-7866 or

Brittiney George, BS, CRS, CEIM is a Certified Rubenfeld Synergist and Infant Massage Educator offering Rubenfeld sessions, movement classes, body-mind integration workshops, and infant massage education at the Resiliency Center.  As a corporate trainer/manager for 11 years & movement practitioner for over 15 years, Brittiney believes in the resiliency of the human spirit and the body’s unique ability to heal.  For more information or to schedule a session please contact Brittiney George at 610-389-7866 or via e-mail at


By Katie May

We all experience feelings, both positive and negative. Being mindfully aware means having the ability to acknowledge these feelings without judging them or trying to change them. Helping children feel understood and validating their feelings is the first step in decreasing tantrums and acting out behaviors.

As a parent, you are the mirror for your child's emotions. From birth, your child has learned about his or her feelings in terms of how you have responded to them. Teaching children how to recognize and identify their feelings is the building block for emotional regulation. The most helpful way to do this is to verbally reflect what you think they are feeling at any given moment. The first step in achieving this harmony is to tune in to how your child is feeling.

When your child was an infant, you may have learned to decipher different cries or sounds that let you know your child was hungry, wet or tired. By tuning in, you can continue to use your parental instincts to decode your child or teen's feelings. Look at your child's face for clues to her feelings. Is she pouting? Smiling? Rolling her eyes? Take note of any noises your child may make that will let you know what emotion he is experiencing. Do you hear a grunt of frustration? A gasp of surprise? Certain words or phrases can clue you in to your child's feelings as well. "I hate you" can mean "I'm angry at you and I don't know how to express that."

Finally, a child's actions will most times speak louder than his or her words. Tantrums are an outward expression of a child's pain, rejection, frustration or anger. Isolating, cutting and risk-taking behaviors are a teen's way of letting you know that he or she does not feel balanced emotionally.  For the next week, take note of your child's feelings. Just the simple act of tuning in to the way he or she feels will begin to change your interactions for the better. 

The Resiliency Center has a variety of services to help you learn more about how to listen to and respond to your child in a way that makes him or her feel safe and understood, including Family Therapy and Parent Coaching.  If your child is struggling with how to recognize, identify and manage intense emotions, individual therapy can benefit your child.  It will help you find ways to connect with him or her while developing ways for you and your child to feel happier. 

Katie K. May is a Nationally Certified, Licensed Professional Counselor who specializes in working with children and adolescents.  She uses play therapy and expressive arts activities to help clients communicate difficult emotions and decrease problem behaviors.  Katie offers individual therapy for children ages 3 through 19, as well as a Teen Group Therapy Circle, a Creative Kids Yoga Story Time and a Mindfulness-Based Expressive Arts for Stress Reduction program for Teens.  Contact: or610-813-2575. for more details on services and programs offered by Katie K. May.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

The Miracle of the Actual by Dean Solon

he is more interested in science.  perhaps.  i am more interested in people.  perhaps.
we are the same.
he dropped acid hundreds of times.  i did lsd once.
we can see for miles and miles and miles.  we are the same.

when i started to write, it was with an intention to write space fiction.  inner space fiction.
and i write space fiction, with a poetry, with words of peace and love and mercy.
he writes space fiction, of a different sort, in a different way.
each of us in a fever dream.
we are the same. 

nothing is the same as it was forty years ago.
nothing is the same as it was a moment ago.
words passing like clouds across the big sky.
each of the seven billion of us, breathing in and breathing out, with craziness inside.
a touch of craziness.
a touch of wisdom.
a touch of possibility
riding on the wind, everchangingly
the same
as it was a moment ago.

we believe we need the Word to awaken
when we need nothing but this moment
to awaken.

the miracle of the actual.
it always surprises.  

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Building Resilience in Response to the Challenges of Today’s Families

by Kathleen Krol, MSS, LCSW, RPT-S

Being a parent and raising a family has never been easy. Today’s parents, like those of past
generations, face many challenges. Whereas, some parenting issues have been around for some time, today’s modern world presents many unique, complex challenges of its own. What are these challenges and how can a family be resilient in the face of them? This article will explore some options.

There has been for some time an explosion of knowledge readily available at one’s fingertips, with everyone and anyone giving advice on how to effectively parent and improve one’s relationships. Dr. Phil is a well-known name whose business is offering this advice. As part of this trend, many people are also diagnosing children now, so any child with behavior problems must have Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) or be Oppositional Defiant and need medication. As a parent, how do you sort through what information is valid and going to be beneficial to your child/teen and what will be detrimental and harmful?

Advances in technology not only bombard us with information but our children as well. The world of children and teens often revolves around this technology, connecting through Facebook, Twitter, and chat rooms, making them vulnerable to cyber bullying and exposing them to the latest unhealthy fads like “cinnamon” and self-harming sites. Parents may find it challenging to know how to connect with their teen who may prefer constantly texting with friends – or find it hard to find stimulating enough activities for a child hooked on videos and games.

Even if you are fortunate not to have these concerns, there are still the typical parenting issues that arise at different developmental stages such as sibling rivalry, school separation anxiety, peer pressure and bullying. Or perhaps an adjustment to the addition of a new family member, changes with home or school, family separations, divorce or becoming a blended family.

Parents may also feel challenged by how not to repeat what they didn’t like about how they were parented or find it difficult to handle well-intended but unwanted feedback from extended family members. Yes, being a parent and raising a family has never been easy and still isn’t!

Wait, there is hope! Resilience in the face of challenges is something you do possess! Resilience in dealing with these many challenges involves trusting in yourself, recognizing what has got you through past obstacles, using experience as a learning opportunity, levering the resources and strengths of your family, accessing your support system, and, most importantly, patience and kindness with yourself when you feel like you have failed.

Resilience also includes knowing when you don’t have the answer, recognizing the need for support, guidance or expert advice, and taking the steps necessary to get the help you need. The Resiliency Center can provide the support, guidance and expert advice families need to feel resilient again – through practitioners who offer counseling, educational and holistic interventions. Our practitioners are genuine, caring, and really committed to a strengths-based approach to helping parents and their families.

Practitioners can help you narrow down and implement strategies that will work most effectively for you as a parent or couple, assist you in identifying family patterns, and helping to normalize your experience. They can support you and your family through the process of transition and change and assist you and your child or teen in managing problems through solution-oriented outcomes and coping skills. Our wellness education programs and community offerings will teach you how to better take care of yourself, whether as a parent, partner or both.

The family-oriented services offered at The Resiliency Center include: family therapy, child and teen counseling, Play-Family Therapy, teen groups, parent coaching, and mindful parenting classes. For new parents, mom’s groups and infant massage education classes are offered.  Couples in the early stages of relationship formation may find premarital counseling beneficial. For relationship transitions, we offer pre-baby counseling, couples counseling to renew your relationship, as well as counseling on navigating the difficulty of separation and divorce. A divorce support group offers community and strategies for resilience. If you are seeking overall life satisfaction, informative and restorative workshops or classes are offered periodically along with regularly scheduled classes like Qi Gong, meditation, and laughter yoga. We look forward to supporting you on your journey, wherever you are.

This article was written by Kathleen Krol, LCSW, RPT-S, who is an independent practitioner at the Resiliency Center with over eleven years post-graduate training and experience. She is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker and Registered Play Therapist/Supervisor with specialization in Contextual Family Therapy, Play Therapy, Sand Tray Therapy and EMDR (for anxiety, self-esteem and trauma issues).  She offers individualized assessment of a parent/family needs, practical solutions and interventions, parent coaching, family therapy and individual child and teen therapy. For a free personalized consultation to see if her services would be a good fit, contact her at or 215-289-3101, #1.

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

The Real Way to Have More Money

by Delia Nessim

These days a lot of people are talking about not having enough money. The more we hear that the economy is bad, the more fear it evokes. People become afraid to spend their money. A collective consciousness builds - one of fear, lack, and even panic. Energy therapies teach that energy attracts physical evidence with a similar vibration. According to this view, people who worry about their lack of money may seem to have more experiences to worry about. Then they feel even more justified in worrying. So what’s the solution? The solution is to change your mind. Change your thoughts. Change your consciousness. That may seem difficult, because it involves changing your current behavior patterns, but it’s not as hard as you think.

The first step in changing any behavior is to pay attention. We can all become more aware of our words, the messages of people around us, and the media we watch. When we are regularly exposed to messages of lack, we can come to believe them and then instinctively repeat them. Do your thoughts and the words you speak contribute to a dialogue of scarcity and fear? I invite you to take a break from these thoughts. Sometimes it IS as simple as saying “Stop!” when the worries arise. After you have some practice noticing and stopping those thoughts, it’s time to play “make believe.”  

Create a vision of what you would like your financial life to look like and feel like. If your imagination is failing you, try to think of a time that you felt rich. Maybe it was when you were 8 years old and your grandmom sent you $10 in the mail. You lit up thinking about all the candy you could buy for ten bucks! GO there… GO there every day… GO there many times a day. The details of how it’s going to happen or how much money you need or want doesn't matter. All that matters is how rich you feel. It’s really fun. There is no harm in pretending. 

Of course, the more you practice feeling rich, the more real it feels. Your energetic vibration begins to inform the world that you are rich, and it’s time for the universe to provide evidence to support that vibration. Within a day or two, you will find money in unexpected places or opportunities will come your way. Don’t discount anything. It might start with finding a dime in the street. Accept it all with gratitude. Say “yes” and “thank you” for everything that comes, big or small. Do not resist it by insisting it look a certain way (e.g., that you get a raise at work, sell more products or services, or win the lottery). Let the universe work out the details. Your job is to pretend, enjoy, and accept with love and gratitude. When you shift your consciousness, you will know it. You will intuitively sense that your world is about to change for the better.

If you need help releasing old patterns, Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) can help. Call (610-416-7535) or email Delia Nessim at for an appointment. 

A Delicate Truth by Dean Solon

"what the gods and all reasonable human beings fought in vain wasn't stupidity at all.  it was sheer, wanton, bloody indifference to anybody's interests but their own."  (john le carre, in his most recent novel "A Delicate Truth")

so much trouble in the world.  syria, ukraine, israel and palestinians, iraq, africa.  i hear larry kane saying on the radio this is certainly not the summer of love.

our world a science fiction world, where a human being on the ground fires a surface-to-air missile that hits its target, a jet 33,000 feet above the earth, and destroys the plane and ends the lives of nearly 300 sentient beings.  what are to make of ourselves?  is this the way we want it to be?
a question that reverberates inside me:  "is this the way you, i, want it to be?"

the.Buddha, Jesus, the hebrew prophets, Meher Baba, Krishna, Muhammed, the embodiers of Mother energy wisdom, are saying:  "We care."

and we care.  and so we are to care, about all living beings with whom we are sharing an experience of residing and abiding on the earth-plane.  our hearts are to be open, wide-open, to and with the cries of sorrow and suffering, here, now.  there is no need for explanation, for discussion.  is simply true---if we are not caring, if we are not bleeding tears too, we are not awake, we are not fully alive.

wisdom and compassion are the heart and whole of our being present, of our being witnesses and participants.

wisdomcompassiom the core and crux of all of it, of all of this.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Allowing Space by Dean Solon

a week ago a sitting-in-circle at the resiliency center.  am remembering now we may have come to a way of unraveling the seeming puzzles and paradoxes of living in this world:  with an allowing of space.

sitting comfortably and with ease.
closing your eyes.
allowing your body to be at rest
and your breathing to be natural.
easing into spaciousness, into expansiveness.
relaxing in this openness.

the world arising, in this moment, as always it has been, and is, arising...
in the deepest within, the most infinite beyond.

no one sitting, nothing happening.
you sitting, you happening.

you sitting, with an allowing of space...

allowing space for joy           allowing space for grief

allowing space for confusion          allowing space for clarity

allowing space for petulance          allowing space for surrender, allowing space for acceptance

allowing space for whatever arises unfolds and reveals

allowing space for anything
allowing space for everything

an all-inclusive path.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Celebrate the Joys of Summer with Qigong

by Karen Steinbrecher

Now is a time of Light, Joy, Elation and Happiness.  Find the magic within as you practice and dance QiGong. This is a time to fully express the new ideas and goals, the seeds we planted at the start of the year. Summer is the season of the heart according to Traditional Chinese Medicine.  This is the season to step into your joy. An important teaching of Chinese medicine is that there is a seamless continuum between the body and the environment around us.  In Five Phase Theory we have entered the cycle of summer, the time, cycle, greatest Yang, and this season is also called ‘Fire.’ All cycles are manifestations of the movement of Yin and Yang, and the seasons are no different. The time of Yin in autumn and winter is a time of resting while both spring and summer are Yang seasons. Yang represents growth, expansion and outward movement. Spring begins this movement of growth, and summer takes over to allow growth to expand to its fullest. During summer we stay healthy trying to mimic this Fire/Yang movement of nature, yet we want to be mindful, to not overdo things. Both too little and too much divert us from harmony. Thus with QiGong practice we work to balance the Yin and Yang. 

Fire stands for heat and the color red. In the body Fire is the Heart, representing a Yang organ and the Small Intestine represents the Yin organs. Stepping into your joy means that it is okay to take a moment away from your busy schedule. Remind yourself that no matter what is going on, it is always possible to feel peace in your heart.  It is good to nourish your being, your spirit, to be kind to yourself. Remember also to nourish yourself with foods.  That is the Yin organ, the small intestine.  This is the organ where the most extensive process of digestion and absorption of foods and nutrient take place.

With Qigong we dance/practice movements to nourish our being with compassion towards joy and happiness.   Some of the many movements connecting the  Heart meridian are  the “Coming and going of the waves, Letting up a balloon, the Swan spreads it wings, Turning your body to view a distant  Full Moon and the Lotus is Rising from the Water.” “Turning the Ball of Light” connects the Small Intestine meridian. These flowing and peaceful stretching movements with the breath work feel so good. For example, the Lotus flower symbolizes Harmony and Love, Peace and Compassion and more. When we practice the Lotus movements, we envision rising up through the muck and the mud to become a flower resonating with purification and growth and happiness. This is a favorite movement with my classes.

Come join us to return to your Heart during these Lotus days of summer with Qigong on Thursdays at 2 P.M. and at 6:15 P.M.
The class lasts for 1 hour with a charge of $10.00

With Qi Blessings and Gratitude,