Sunday, February 27, 2011

Ask Parvati 1: Getting Unstuck and Finding Your Passion

Getting Unstuck and Finding Your Passion
February 27, 2011

Thank you very much for your submissions to this first in a series of ‘Ask Parvati’ blogs. The lucky winner of the first draw asked a wonderful question that I believe many can relate to about finding your life’s passion.

If you would like your question answered next Sunday, make sure you send it to me by Thursday, March 3rd at: I will draw one question to answer each week.

Have a super week and enjoy the read.


Dear Parvati,

I feel stuck. I want to find my life passion, something that makes me spark, but I feel like I am in the dark. I have many ideas, but none really stick. I'm capable of doing many things, but nothing seems like it could develop into a passion. Why do I feel like I'm destined to be in search of a passion for the rest of my life without ever finding it?


Dear Friend,

Thank you for reaching out, especially when you are feeling in the dark. There are many who would harbor resentment and live in that darkness for the rest of their lives. The fact that you are open to asking questions, to searching, to knowing yourself better, to discovering what brings you joy, is wonderful. It means that you are at some level moving, growing and receptive to possibility.

The desire to find your passion is beautiful. I do believe we each are born with unique talents and gifts that we are called to both personally enjoy and also share with the world. Due to conditioning from our past, we can learn to suppress our inner voice. We can live our lives for others rather than being inwardly guided by our unique soul voice. It usually takes time and practice to learn to honour an authentic expression of our true self. So please, take heart and give yourself a gentle pat on the back for being open to finding your voice.

The idea of “finding your passion” may feel a bit overwhelming because perhaps you have set up an all-or-nothing scenario for yourself. With that pressure on, you may find it hard to give yourself the permission to explore and trust how things make you feel. From my experience, life is constantly evolving and unfolding. Most of us are taught to think in terms of ‘arriving’, like we will ‘get there’ and our lives will be perfect and all will be in order. But it is not so. Just like nature is always responding to change, we grow, we shift and we evolve. Change and evolution are life.

When life feels dizzying, my motto is to put my feet on the ground. When inner stakes feel high, it is useful to start doing something that makes you feel expansive, right now. Chasing illusions of perfection tomorrow can lead to an empty and endless search. So choose to do something today that makes you feel like you want to get out of bed this morning.

Doing one simple activity that makes you feel alive is like switching yourself on to what makes you feel connected, in this moment. From that choice in the moment to connect to your joy, a life based on inner connection can flower. It is like the journey of a thousand miles starts with a single step. A single step feeling connected to something begins a life feeling connected. Life is one moment unfolding after another. In that place of greater lightness and expansion, your deeper joys will become clearer to you, one breath at a time.

It is very powerful to remind ourselves that we are constantly co-creating our life. We are not victims of something "happening to us". What we experience in the outer world is a reflection of what we think and believe. Inside and out are beautifully interconnected. If we are willing, open and ready, life provides us with a powerful opportunity to learn and grow deeply. Life is like a mirror that constantly reflects ourselves back to ourselves. Trouble is, most of us are attached to seeing things or living things the way we want them to be, the way we think will make us happy.

Many people think that one thing will make them happy, like that one perfect partner, or that one ideal job, that one glam outfit or car or hair cut or whatever! But it won't. All things in life are fleeting. We tend to "want" rather than be. When we let go of the grip of "wanting" (like a closed fist) and allow ourselves to truly begin to open (like an open palm), we touch a place of infinite fulfillment that is not limited to the activity we are doing in that moment. Our lives flower from the inside out as an expression of our deepest joy, our interconnection to all of life. Our lives become soul-directed, in service, expansive and alive, rather than wanting-directed, based on fear, disconnect and constriction.


I believe in the power of writing your own obituary. I don’t mean this in a morbid way whatsoever. I find it a very powerful exercise. Make a list and keep it in a safe place, like on your shrine, or in your diary, or frame it to see it every day. Write down how you want to be remembered. Answer these questions:
  • What do you leave behind when you go?
  • How do you want to feel when you leave this fabulous planet?
  • What do you need to do now to feel that way?
  • What do you want to do, see, touch, feel like?

Life is temporal. We all leave at some point. So why not know what you want to feel like when you do and start today working towards that goal? I find this keeps a strong life-focus. It is like working with the idea that hindsight is 20/20. And start there. Forget the rest. Life does go quickly. So it is good to keep focused on things that make you say yes to life.


I do believe that you are meant to live your heart’s joy. There is time to enjoy, to do what you love. In this way, life is perfect. Start right here, right now, exactly where you are. Take small steps, one foot after the other, with an open heart, a ready mind and in a willing state. Your life then unfolds, one moment after the other, into a deep joy that you can share with the world.

Here are some things I know to be true from my life that you may find useful along your path:

1) We are complete, infinite, abundant beings that are attached to the illusion of separation, fear and scarcity
2) All actions from a place of wanting and disconnection create suffering
3) All actions from a place of joy bring healing, connection, abundance and fulfillment to ourselves and all beings
4) When you have a choice to make, ask yourself, ‘Does this make me feel rooted, vital and expansive?’ Only do things that make you feel grounded, alive and evolving.
5) There is no job that is too small or unimportant. If you love it (and it does not break any law), then it is perfect.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Introducing "Ask Parvati"

Sunday February 20, 2011


Thank you to all those who have followed my North Pole journey on this blog page and through the video blogs at This blog would not be active without you taking the time and care to read it. I very much value connecting with you!

I also want to again thank Sunanda and Rishi for being so steadfast along the journey; the Earth Team (ET) for being an essential group of volunteers who wholeheartedly supported the journey from afar; Satish Sikha for his drive and determination to gather the Earth messages on his fabric and go to the Arctic to showcase it and for suggesting I join him to sing at the top of the world. The journey was for our Earth, the mother to us all. It was possible only because of the efforts of many. We are all connected.


Over the years, I’ve received many questions privately (email, phone, Skype, etc) asking for guidance on handling various life challenges. Much of the advice I wished I had published. It contained valuable insights that would have benefited more than one person.

So I have an idea. I want to hear from you! I open this blog page to you as a forum where you can ask me questions on a wide range of topics. I will answer you honestly, relying on my life experience. My intention in all my answers will be to support you living your I AM, the fullest life you were meant to live. Life is short, so why do anything else?


Email me

Throughout the week, please send your questions to Submissions close on Thursday. Anything sent after that will be considered for the next week. I will pick at random one question to answer. I will post the answer on Sunday so everyone can enjoy and benefit. Then we start that same process over the following week. I respect your privacy so names will not be published.

Pick a topic

It is best to ask me questions from your heart on topics I know most about such as the arts, music, performing, culture, healing, yoga, meditation, personal growth, self-help, complimentary medicine, working with the unseen world and conscious living. Please make the question no more than a paragraph, a sentence being ideal.

Sound like fun? It does to me, so I hope it does to you too.

I look forward to hearing from you!
Have a great week.


Thursday, February 17, 2011

North Pole Journey: Epilogue

A week after my return: Friday, October 7, 2010


It has been about a week since I have been back from the North Pole. Though I’ve slept well these past days, I feel very tired and strangely, I think I feel something like culture shock. My heart is heavy having seen even more clearly and palpably the effect of human ignorance. Yet there is new life being born in me beneath the undeniable process of grieving I am experiencing. Perhaps that baby Inuit I felt wiggling in my soul while in the Arctic is shape-shifting into a wiser, more compassionate self. Though my eyes these days are continual fountains that do not run dry, my chest feels like a chrysalis bursting into freedom. The force moving through me feels like the power of Life itself. As I evolve, I am charged with an even stronger pull to wake up and inspire positive growth for all.

I know that when my heart breaks, I have a choice. It can either break to close down or it can break open. I feel my heart is breaking open after seeing a much bigger picture of the ecological crisis than I previously knew existed. This week doing the media circuit, people seem interested in the problem, but also bound by the perception of helplessness and disconnect. I know my tears are my own, yet I feel acutely aware of the pain of the planet. This may sound grandiose, but it is true: the pain I feel feels like the pain of the world. There I was at the North Pole, praying to be a vehicle for transformative healing for the living Earth and for all beings, offering myself completely to Her. I understand that the spiritual purge I am going through now is the result of the prayers I did from the bottom of my heart at the top of the world asking that our world may be free from all interference. I am part of the world, literally. Resistance to life in the form of fear, judgment, anger, shame…all those painful emotions that disconnect me from my truest beauty, adds weight to my health and well being and also to that of the Earth.

We use this expression commonly: to feel the pain of the world. But when we say that, we mean the pain of the people on the Earth, but not the pain of the planet itself. Yet, the people who live on it are also made of it. I understand now within my very cells that there is no pain in the world that Nature itself does not feel. We speak about being one people, interconnected. Yet we are also intricately connected and interdependent with the living earth as a conscious being.

I knew before going that the planet is in trouble. What I saw at the North Pole makes me even more aware of how big the problem is. Unanimously, elders, healers, politicians, hunters, pilots, environmental activists, scientists shared the same message: the ice is melting very quickly, the animals are dying and people must stop polluting. The winds carry our pollution to the Arctic. People there are experiencing what we will see soon. This is serious and we must take action now.

What my heart is teaching me is that the environmental crisis is a gift to learn to connect more deeply. It is like the call from the planet, our mother, teaching us, yet again (as a mother would), how we must grow up and become wiser and more compassionate beings. She shows us that we are all connected because when we act in a disconnected manner, life dies and so do we. What I do affects you. What you do affects me. What we all do affects the planet. We are not isolated islands but one Earth family.

Through this process of potential awakening, I see that there are two levels of change we are being called to implement. One is external and one is internal. They inform each other. Externally, we must reduce CO2 emissions. This is not new. We have known that for some time now. But it is more urgent than ever. There is a saying that what we resist persists. Similarly what we avoid gets bigger until we must give it due attention. It is like life drops a tiny feather on our shoulder to remind us to wake up, then a pebble, then a stone. Finally a huge grand piano comes crashing down on our head to help us wake up. I see the natural disasters like the ice caps melting, the Tsunamis, what happened in Haiti and Pakistan as the grand piano. We can be easily complacent in Canada and other developed countries because we have not yet personally experienced these horrors where we live. It is happening “over there”. It may well take people turning on their taps and seeing purple water before everyone understands that there is a global ecological crisis and we must change. I do hope not.

Yes, we must plant trees, turn off lights and electrical devices when not in use, conserve water and take shorter showers; look for alternative transportation to cars, such as car pooling or taking the public transport. Beyond these external things, I believe we are spiritually called to awaken to realize we are part of a much bigger whole. When we begin to see that each decision we make, we don’t make for ourselves alone but that we affect everyone on the planet, we naturally begin to act with more compassion. When we have more compassion, turning off the lights when not in use, or riding a bike becomes more natural. We realize the full impact of our actions.

The realization of our interconnection inspires personal responsibility and transformation. That in turn creates global change. We must realize that we are connected and what one person does affects everyone and the planet. We all breathe the same air and live on the same living organism. Varied in race and creed, we are one Earth family, children of the same mother, our planet. On this Earth, there are wonderfully rich cultures, races, creeds that are like a beautiful tapestry window dressing. Let’s look through the window and welcome the light of possibility, of interconnection into our lives.

I wrote on Satish’s fabric, “we are wealthy when our world is healthy”. I believe the ecological crisis is happening now as a call to change, not because we can’t, but because we can. We can meet this as a powerful opportunity for tremendous personal and global transformation.

I am so grateful to all who have supported this North Pole journey. It has been so very graced. May we continue to wake up, connect to ourselves and to each other and realize our true nature. Mall beings be free of suffering.

With Grace, may it be so.


Monday, February 14, 2011

North Pole Journey: Back in Toronto, a dream of the Goddess

The morning of September 30, 2010

The morning after I arrive back home from the North Pole, I wake up having had a most potent dream:


I was far north. I had no sense of bearing. I was just very north, looking for my spiritual community. I met the Goddess there in a co-op building with food supplies.

When I saw Her, I was surprised and overjoyed but I did not lose my breath or feel an energy rush as I have in the past when seeing Her. Instead, I felt equal. She was open, present, looking at me just as I was looking at Her.

She embraced me and told me good job, that She was very pleased. She said I must be careful about feeling not enough. This was an impossibilities trickiness tendency and would wear me down to the point of not being able to do this work. I thought of my health and the need to make sure I remain caring of my own physical needs. Then She let me massage Her feet and adore them for a long time.

She spoke to me about my next lessons, that which I am to embody. But it was as though She suddenly spoke in another language. I told Her I did not understand and asked Her to please repeat the teaching. But again the words transformed into a language I could not understand. I told Her so and She said I was not ready yet to know but that She would show me. There is no need to worry. I realized that I thought I knew so much but now I see I know nothing. The immensity of the Goddess!

Her eyes looked wild. I was filled with awe in understanding that I was looking into the eyes of Death. I felt like I had seen that brilliant, dark flash in the eyes of the Inuit hunters. But this was not the flash of darkness I have seen in the eyes of many who call themselves spiritual. When I saw this, I understood and Her eyes became those of the Goddess Kali.

Then She put Herself playfully into a bag of rice, like a child in a placenta. We were giggling together and playing. I picked Her up in the bag and held Her on my lap like a small child. I had a moment of concern that She could not breathe so I opened the bag and stroked Her hair. Though Her body was Her usual size, She was completely weightless. It was as though we merged.

Through this exchange, She had given me a stack of papers that I needed to deliver to the store of my spiritual community. People would value these. I gave them to the store but people were confused. They were expecting money instead of receiving these blessed papers. I did not know what to do. I just knew I had to not be attached and now deal with practical matters. She will show me the next steps.

Monday, February 7, 2011

North Pole Journey - Day Seven

Day Seven: Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Performance at Inuksuk High School IQALUIT

We fly back to Toronto today, but first, we have one last stop. I am scheduled to perform and Satish will present his fabric at Iqaluit's Inuksuk High School at 11am. It is already 8am. We must check out of the hotel and head up the hill for my sound check, costume change and walk through the show in a space I have not yet seen. Satish has a few personal pieces to tend to and encourages us to go ahead. He knows it takes me an hour and a half just to get into costume.

Our taxi pulls up to a large, electric blue building that looks like a large block of Lego, marked only by a few small, circular windows. The day has already begun for students. The halls are empty as we walk towards the administration offices to check in. I feel a sense of familiarity here. I remember this, the feeling of hormones and agitation in the air, the tension between the students feeling “I really don’t care but I have to be here” and “this is where my best friends hang” – and the teachers doing the best they can in jobs that are not easy.

Sunanda and I are shown into my makeshift dressing room, a small office that appears to be the guidance counselor’s office. The bookshelves are lined with information about birth control methods and tools for teenage pregnancy and parenting techniques. Here Sunanda begins to unpack the costume elements as I join Rishi for sound check.

Rishi is in the auditorium with two drama students. They are doing their best to tweak the sound system so that my music fills the space and feels juicy. I walk over to sing into the mic. There I tweak some knobs and bring to life a mixer covered in dust, with hidden magic elements these students knew nothing about. We are in better technical shape than I had thought. This will go over well. The sound is good.

I head back to the dressing room where Sunanda and I launch into transforming me into the mythic creature Natamba. The drama teacher has told us that her students are really excited about the show, since she told them I am a cross between Lady Gaga and Madonna.

The school bell rings and triggers a Pavlovian response in me. A feeling of excitement and freedom surges through my body. The halls fill with noisy, boisterous, vibrantly alive students who emerge from small rooms. Soon the auditorium is flooded with dynamic bodies full of the very hormones I felt pulsating through the halls when I first walked in. I peek out of my dressing room door and see a room agitated and full of energy. This is fabulous. I am ready.

The lights go out and Rishi walks on. He announces my presence and shares a brief introduction to the meaning of my trip. I walk through the cheer and break into song. The crowd is generous, palpable and vital.

After my four songs, I call over the mic for Satish, who I had not seen since morning. In the dark room, he had been patiently waiting through my performance in the front row of the auditorium. He walks onto the stage and together we unveil his fabric, explaining his mission. The auditorium is silent as the students are glued to his presentation.

Then we open a dialogue and welcome questions. The one I get the most is about the wig and costume. This is never dull, especially now with this spontaneous wig creation on my head made of recycled mayonnaise lids! It’s a great green promo piece, I joke. Satish is asked about the breadth of his travels and where he goes next. The kids are clearly inspired by our presence and shout out “great work!” and “keep going!”. This is why we have come: to touch, to inspire, to heal, and to transform. Another success as we come to the end of our North Pole journey.

As I walk off stage, CBC TV is waiting. A producer had come to televise the show and now wants to ask questions. I love the feeling of being able to reach and touch many people through the media. We live in a blessed age where distance does not matter.

Rishi is busy redirecting various teenagers that surround us. As I leave the CBC interview, students ask for my autograph. The many faces show differing stories but all have the light of hope in their eyes.

I peel myself away from the group and slip back into the dressing room. Our flight leaves in just over an hour. Sunanda helps me get out of costume as quickly as possible and we hastily make our way into a cab.


This time however, we are not all going the same direction. Just as we came separately to Resolute Bay, now we go our separate ways. Satish is on his way to Ottawa while we go home to Toronto. After this adventure of a lifetime and working in such close camaraderie, sharing the common vision to serve our planet, leaving Satish is hard. We make sure he is safely on his flight and then run to ours.

Just as our trip started barely making it to our flight Northbound, we now return home barely making it onto this flight. When we left home, our delay getting to the plane was due to the amount of tasks we had to prepare for a completely unknown experience in a very short time. Perhaps too, it was an expression of some fear of the possibility of death we could meet in the journey. Now, the tight timeline to get to our flight feels like a result of us trying to savour every last morsel of this adventure of a lifetime.

Nunavut, we will greatly miss you. Your story moved us to come to the top of the world. Now, your story is part of our own personal story. Each one of us carries within us new-found love for the Inuit, deeper love for our planet, our Mother Earth and growing gratitude for the power of friendship. Individually we are strong. But together we are One Earth family.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

North Pole Journey, Day Six

Day Six: Tuesday, September 28, 2010


Satish, Sunanda, Rishi and I greet this, our last day in Resolute Bay, before sunrise. Out the breakfast room window, the wind blows powdered snow across the rocky ground and out over the frozen Arctic Ocean where yesterday we walked on icebergs. Today the sky is cloudy, still darkened by the remains of the night. Our bags are packed, awaiting us at the front door of the inn so that we may catch an early flight to Iqaluit today, en route back to Toronto. Tonight we will rest in Iqaluit, Nunavut territory’s capital city and largest community located on the south coast of Baffin Island at the head of Frobisher Bay.

We say our goodbyes to Chris at the inn, then Meghan at the airport who drives us to our departure. There is no doubt we are sad to leave. This has been an enormously important trip for each one of us, the likes of which seems still masked by a cloudy feeling that draws across my inner sight. I cannot quite see the magnitude of what this all means. All I know for sure is, like a child who marks their growth with lines on the inside of a doorjamb, the growth of my Self is marked on the doorjamb of my life by this trip to the North Pole.

The flight, which left the ground at 6:30am, is relatively uneventful. It retraces our Northbound steps, now moving back over land that we saw just a short time ago with the miracle of virgin eyes. Today’s clouds partially masks the view of the geographic magnitude we were privy to witness on the way up. Despite the cloud, I can still very much feel the expansive, harsh rock and ice that rolls out in broad, carved strokes below me. This is the land of the Inuit people where humans have survived for thousands of years. Like a child that intuitively knows its mother, I feel a connection to this part of the world, our Mother Earth, as though within me a baby Inuit soul is being born. I understand fully how I heard Her call that drew me on this journey. I am connected to the planet, to these people, to all people through my humanity, through my reliance on this majestic planet’s selfless generosity for my very survival.

The 6000-plus populated Iqaluit, by comparison to the Resolute Bay community of 200, seems like a booming metropolis. But still, the modern buildings are laid out over rough roads and sidewalks, which lend some insight into what perhaps most cities were like in early inception. Founded in 1942 as an American airbase, Iqaluit, meaning "place of many fish" in Inuktitut, is a young city.

As we arrive at the new Nova Inn, we are told that there are no rooms left to accommodate our needs. Somehow Sunanda creates magic and soon we are up in our room. The day is yet young, so we head out for a planned meeting at the Elder Centre. It is I in particular who wants to visit with the Inuit elders to hear what they have witnessed in environmental changes, to learn from their insights, to see if there is a way we can serve them and in so doing, serve the Earth.


A bilingual, middle-aged Inuit woman greets the four of us at the Center. She is our translator. Most of the elders speak only Inuktitut. Some of these people are over 100 years old.

The large, bright room with a bay window at one end is filled with perhaps people, mostly women, who sit at tables and chairs playing cards, conversing and sharing time. Rishi asks if he is allowed to videotape our visit. We are given permission.

Two women, perhaps eighty or so, become spokes people for the group. They share stories about the enormous changes they have seen over the course of their lifetime, illustrating how snow used to be pure white but is now dark, dirty and yellowed. They speak of life living off the land and how they now no longer live in igloos but in built houses. They share stories from their grandfathers, how their elders saw the coming of the white people and how they would bring this environmental change.

These elders say they have hope, that is, hope for their children. They see the Inuit children now more educated and as such, with more ability to deal with the environmental problems. For them, the future depends on the health and strength of the children.

Satish reaches into his jute bag to pull out his eco-silk fabric message, dedicated to children. Sunanda and I help open it up and walk around the edges of the room so that the elders can see the many signatures from around the world it showcases. We talk about Satish’s work and share the reasons we have come to the North Pole. I share how my music is dedicated to helping people remember the good of life, awakening to who we are, how we are all interconnected as one human family. I am asked to sing, so I spontaneously choose “You Gotta Believe”, a song I wrote on 9-11 and had the privilege to sing in New York City at the world famous Madison Square Garden. As the sound pours out of my mouth, I feel my whole body shiver with waves of energy moving through. I am reminded and humbled yet again that there is a force here that is so much greater than our limited selves can see.


The next meeting that Sunanda organized for us is with City Councilor Simon Nattaq. We make our way over to the government building. Shaking Simon’s hand is like touching the strength of the Earth. Like Sam the hunter who brought us yesterday out to the ocean icebergs, Simon feels made of the land itself. This is not a feeling I have had shaking any other politicians hand. I soon find out that Simon is not only a politician, but a respected elder in the community. A government employee translates Simon’s native tongue Inuktitut into English and our words into Inuktitut.

Satish and I speak of our mission to help awaken people to the necessity of understanding our interconnection, how we are all children of the same Mother, the planet Earth. Simon is open to this message and warm to our communication. We spend a generous half hour together. He signs Satish’s fabric in traditional Inuktitut geometric writing. His penmanship stands unique among other signatures in various languages on the electric-green silk.

We are offered a place to speak at the City Council Meeting today. At the meeting, Satish and I individually step to the microphone and each share the call of our parallel missions. As I speak, I watch the Inuit women on the board resonate with my words:

I am not a scientist who works in external laboratories. I have no clinical evidence to prove the agitation that is in Nature at this time. I am an artist. My laboratory is within. Through my inner, quiet, contemplative practice and meditation, I have felt called from within from the Earth herself to make this journey. We are one Earth family, all inter-connected through Nature, our Mother Earth.

Being a singer, songwriter and performer, what I can offer is my voice. I am here to help give voice to the environment and bring with me a message from the North. Being in the media, I am in a position to help raise awareness of the melting polar ice in people all around the world, many of whom are disconnected from Nature and are unaware of the role we each play as Earth Walkers. I am here to be present with you, to connect, to listen, to honour your ways, to respect those that are acutely aware of our interconnection with Nature. The reason we have come is to build a community of mutual trust and support. We know that only when we listen and work together can we bring about the change that is so urgently needed. I would like to hear from you if there is any way you feel we may serve you and our shared Earth.

The message from the council members echoes what we have heard unsolicited from the elders, hunters, healers, environmentalists and politicians: tell the south to stop polluting. The world’s pollution ends up in the North, at the top of our world. Nature is dying; the animals are leaving; and as such, we are suffering.

After our City Council talk, several young adults at the meeting who are part of Katimavik, an organization that educates Canadian youth through community involvement, come up to us to share how touched they are by our North Pole mission. Yes, hope is in the children. And this environmental crisis calls each one of us to make positive change in our own lives, in what we think, in how we treat ourselves, in how we listen to each other and in how we respect our planet. Yes, now more than ever, hope is born from awakened consciousness in all we do.