*** Please Note: I have shifted my blog to http://juliecomber.com. My new posts are there! ***



L’organisme Families of Sisters in Spirit (FSIS) – Les Familles des Sœurs par l’Esprit, en français, est en train de faire une vidéo musicale ! Découvrez notre projet en ligne: http://igg.me/p/201877?a=1011401

Au Canada, les femmes autochtones sont cinq fois plus susceptibles que les autres femmes de mourir à la suite d’actes de violence. Désirant changer cette statistique, la FSIS est une organisation bénévole, populaire et à but non lucratif dirigé par des familles de femmes ou de filles autochtones disparues et/ou assassinées.

Les objectifs de la campagne de la vidéo musicale For Our Sisters (Pour nos sœurs) sont les suivants:

1. Sensibiliser et promouvoir le développement d’une inspiration pour agir au sujet de la problématique des femmes autochtones disparues et/ou assassinées au Canada,

2. Promouvoir le FSIS et le travail que cette organisation accomplit,

3. Promouvoir les deux grands événements annuels du FSIS sur la Colline du Parlement : la Veillée du 4 Octobre et le Jour de la Justice le14 Février.

Nous avons donc besoin d’argent! Votre contribution permettra de financer un magnifique et fascinant vidéoclip, ce qui aidera la FSIS à assister plus de personnes. La chanson “For Our Sisters”, par Julie Comber, est un appel à l’action pour tout le monde afin d’aider à stopper la violence contre les femmes et les filles autochtones.

Vous pouvez consulter la page http://igg.me/p/201877?a=1011401 pour en savoir plus sur le projet. Nous vous remercions d’avance de vos généreuses contributions!

S’il vous plaît partagez ce lien pour la vidéo avec votre entourage.

À partir de la page de la Campagne Indiegogo, vous pouvez utiliser l’outil «partager» pour faire passer le message sur Facebook, Twitter, email, et plus encore!

Merci beaucoup ! Nouveau “teaser” de la chanson: http://snd.sc/NCUkVg

As the feather falls, my heart falls. The pain and sorrow of Algonquin Grandmother Louise Wawatie and her brother Joseph, in a video of them just released from prison, radiates off the screen. They were imprisoned for 8 days, and the Land they stood up for has been logged in the meantime.

While I suppose it is fitting they were released on International Day for the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, the fact they were arrested at all and held for so long is proof Canada has a long way to go when it comes to respecting Indigenous Rights.

Louise and Joseph were arrested on charges of mischief and breaking an injunction forbidding them from protesting the clear-cut logging by Resolute Forestry Products near Lac Poigan. They both refused conditions of bail, asserting their sovereign rights over their unceded territory where Resolute continues to clear-cut. The sister and brother were held in Maniwaki, Quebec, until this morning when they appeared in court and were released. The video of Joseph explaining the conditions of his release means he can’t even go home, and of Louise dropping the feathers, were shot outside the courthouse.

Louise’s brother, Jacob (Mowegan) Wawatie explains that “the meaning of the feathers falling is: Who is going to stand up for the collective nation that walks upon Mother Earth? This Grandmother is calling to all Nations to stand for the future generations. It is for the world of the future and may the youth of this world voice their own destiny.”

While our hearts sink to see Elders treated with disrespect, and to see beautiful Land destroyed, this is a call to action, not to wallow in despair. The feathers must be picked up, and we must fly together to a future where we live in harmony with the rest of Creation, a future where we can each flourish.

Will you answer this call and stand up for future generations? One small but important step: share the video and Louise’s message, far and wide.

Keep Shining,


Note: see this post for more background, and a video illustrating why they sought to protect this Land.

In the bright Sunday sun in Strathcona park, Jacob (Mowegan) Wawatie draws maps of Algonquin territory, of his family’s territory, as rivers that branch off a main artery, just like the veins of a leaf branch from its stem. This is the land he is fighting to protect, for his family and for future generations.

Huddled in a circle on parched grass under the shade of huge Oak, we have just watched the video from the July 26 confrontation on the logging site near Poigan Lake, on unceded Algonquin land, on Jacob’s land. Mr. Dion (representing PF Resolute, a logging company from Montreal, Québec) and Sergeant St-Louis from the Sureté du Quebec, confronted the people protecting the wildlife and culture being destroyed and displaced by the company’s logging. Although the police officer claims to not take sides, it is clear in the video he is standing with the people from the PF Resolute company and mediating on their behalf, though paid by peoples’ taxes.

Eight minutes into the video, Jacob brings forward the baby hawk he found in one of the clear-cut areas: “This is the reason. How many nests have you knocked down this summer? Did you even consider that? How many other creatures have you dislodged from this territory? So what are we going to have to eat? What are we going to have to show to our children? This is why we were trying to do something about it. Its not because we are against the system. Its not because we are against your logging. We are trying to make you aware of this thing. To bring it into the consciousness of the Forestry Industry. And the government. And you that represent Justice [speaking to the Sergeant], supposedly. Now you understand our position. You see our goal. Our dream.”

Jacob told the loggers’ representative (who refused to go get his workers to see and hear Jacob in person) that they were not seeing these things, the terrible impact they are having on the Land. Insulated within their giant machines, or deafened by their chainsaws, they work on the land but are hardly more grounded in the land than the average corporate employee under fluorescent lights in a cubicle.

Jacob spoke to them, but his message in the video is for all of us who have lost our connection to the Land.

He and many others who still understand and thrive from the vitality only Nature can give are calling us to our true selves. To be human beings who are grounded in and grateful to the Land, grateful to all the other beings we share her with. Each animal and plant species is a unique expression of the energy that animates us all. Each species has a unique way of being in the world.

When we let ourselves see them, truly connect with them, feel what it might be like to be them, we open up the doors of our own perception. Can you imagine what it would be like to fly? To senses things through electricity? See through sound or with heat? Breathe water?

Will we truly SEE beyond our collective materialism and indifference? See the people and wildlife who are still connected to the Land? We may forget in our Cities, but we still depend on Nature for our life.

The baby hawk could not survive without her parents. She was named Mamwi for “Together”. Here is your chance to come together to defend this one part of the Land, part of the larger goal of shifting our relationship with Nature so that we can all flourish on this one precious Earth. Please share the video: http://www.dailymotion.com/video/xsimtg_mamwi-unedited-uncut-version_news

Keep Shining,


UPDATE, 9 August: Louise and Joseph were released after 8 days of imprisonment.

2 August: Please SIGN & SHARE this petition to free Louise and Joseph Wawatie: http://www.avaaz.org/fr/petition/Free_Louise_and_Joseph_Wawatie_without_conditions/?cKQhPab

1 August 2012: Sureté de Québec arrested Elders who were standing for the Land. Grandmother Louise Wawatie and Joseph Wawatie were arrested this morning.

I will keep updating this blog post when we know ways you can support Jacob and everyone protecting the Land. Meanwhile, PLEASE SHARE the petition and the video, and you can see more shorter videos over several days at the Standoff here: http://www.youtube.com/user/CDurare. For Jacob’s speech alone, see http://youtu.be/r5TuHM9AE2w

I just had a healing epiphany.

Knowing Meaning in Chaos

Its hard to remember all those passwords, right? 10 years ago when I was still a geneticist, I came up with a little saying, and used various combinations of the letters from it with numbers and symbols so that I would (be more likely to) remember all those passwords. The idea was the statement would be a meaningful to me, but not something anyone else would guess.

Here, for your eyes only, is my secret statement: Wrench Meaning From Chaos.

I admit I really did have that lofty goal at the time: “Damn, Life is Confusing! So part of my Life’s mission will be to find the Meaning in that Chaos.” Remember, I was a geneticist and all those mutagens, carcinogens, toxins, and radiation in the lab might have contributed to delusions of grandeur.

Fast forward to today. It started to rain in the afternoon. I got sleepy. I’d gotten solid work done on my Dissertation, so did as my body asked and went home for a nap before dinner.

The nap took over, I just couldn’t wake up, kept resetting my alarm. Then at 6pm, in that state between waking and sleep (theta brain waves?), “Wrench Meaning From Chaos” popped into my head. And it was like I really understood it for the first time. And literally smacked my forehead. Duh! Why hadn’t I thought of this before?!?

Finding meaning in Chaos could be a fine public service. Except that’s not how I wrote the statement. “Wrench Meaning from Chaos” implies struggle, implies trying to wrench secrets out of the Universe, out of Nature.  Its… kind of violent. Kind of arrogant. Kind of disrespectful.

And it certainly doesn’t serve the kind of Life I want to live now! But I hadn’t thought about it for years. And everyday, for the past 10 years, when I login to my email, withdraw money, check FB, those passwords always remind me of their root: Wrench Meaning From Chaos.

So a decade later, I admit my life has often been a Struggle, with a lot of illness, frustration, setbacks, just feeling stuck and “off”.  But there has been incredible joy, breathtaking experiences, fabulous opportunities, and a lot of love and friendship. And especially in the past two years when the illnesses wouldn’t let up, a LOT of learning and evolving.

I have indeed wrenched some Meaning from Chaos, and the price has been this underlying feeling of Struggle. That things are disproportionately difficult. Even though I am identifying and changing limiting beliefs, eating well, meditating (well, sort of), learning how energy works, going to bed earlier, etc.

What impact has that ever-repeated statement had on me? One of the reasons we enlist Healers to help us on our Journeys is because we often have blind spots, and its easier for others to notice them and give us the opportunity to overcome them. But this was my secret protected statement, and no one had found it.

Yesterday I was learning about NLP, and was playing around with the statement “I recognize profound healing is happening right now.” And so it is. I know what to do. My new secret statement is “Knowing Meaning in Chaos”. I’m changing all my passwords.

And if that doesn’t work, I’ll figure out what does. Because the only thing that is certain is change. And our answers truly come from within.

Keep Shining,


I was supposed to be working on my Thesis. But when Lissa Rankin’s newsletter sailed into my Inbox, I couldn’t resist reading her post. The ever-inspiring Lissa’s uber-inspiring post was about what she was going to do with Chris Guillebeau’s surprise $100 investment in each of the participants at his World Domination Summit (this is Good Domination, folks, not Dark Side Domination). He asked everyone in the audience to invest the $100 he gave them in changing the World.

Lissa decided she would pay it forward and invited everyone reading her blog post to share how they would use the $100. So I patted my Thesis on the head and told her I’d be back later, and posted how the $100 could be used to help spark one of my Dreams: to found Flourish Youth Centre in Georgetown, Guyana, for disadvantaged children and youth.

The idea is a youth centre that would provide a loving, inspiring, and enriching environment for youth. It will be a drop-in centre to offer supplemental programming to existing homes and orphanages in Georgetown (such as Joshua House, where I have volunteered).

Kids (& a puppy) at Joshua House who could benefit from Flourish Youth Centre. Sept 2011

There are so many kids out there who just don’t get a good start to life. Maybe they are AIDS orphans. Maybe they are abused at home. Maybe they live in grinding poverty.  Whatever the case, if they have a safe, loving, stimulating environment to go to, that can go a long way to helping them flourish, to become everything they can be. I want to be part of a place like that, in partnership with local friends who believe, like me, that things can be even better in Guyana.

Part of the mission of Flourish would be to help children and youth connect with the more-than-human-world, so with animals and plants. There is little infrastructure in Guyana to take care of unwanted animals, and I do not know of any therapeutic use of animals there (for example, caring for horses, dogs, and so many other species has been found beneficial to traumatized children and youth). There are so many possibilities to create an enriching environment for young people; I see especially animals, permaculture gardens, and lots of music and arts.

I see Flourish Youth Centre as part of a network with other similar organizations, projects and centres. For example, I am inspired by Projeto Sol and Boikarabelo (featured in documentary, Angels in the Dust), and the rural residence of the Dogo Dogo Centre I visited in Dar Es Salaam, Tanzania.

Today, I was supposed to be working on my Thesis. But when Lissa Rankin’s newsletter sailed into my Inbox, I couldn’t resist reading her post. And discovered Flourish Youth Centre will get one of the $100 investments generously donated by Lissa’s readers!!!

I cried. This is the first investment in Flourish. One more beautiful step towards the Dream becoming Real.

To Lissa and the generous donors inspired by her post, thank you with all my heart and soul!

Keep Shining,


Working horses in Georgetown, Guyana, could also benefit from linking youth with the more-than-human-world through Flourish Youth Centre.

It’s my b-day, and this has been quite a year of learning. as i marauded around in my rainbow tie-dye dress on my broken bike, enjoying a beautiful day with family and friends, i thought of all the time and money i’ve spent learning, and some things i just feel i need to share ASAP, because they could be so useful to you. so i decided to just fire off a short little post of Things Everyone Should Know.

1. the every day World is absolutely magical. many of us take that for granted.
2. for example, breathing is amazing. there are advanced techniques to learn, for sure, but even just noticing your breath is so grounding. Breathe deep!!!
3. Drink lots of water. but make sure its filtered or distilled or from a safe natural source! that chlorine kills off the bad bacteria that could be in City water… and kills off your microflora that you need for healthy digestion.

4. The Industrial Agri-Business has way too much power over our food. those nice “percentage of daily value” on vitamins and minerals? that is what the food contained BEFORE it was processed. For example, with canned fish they make great promise of the Omega-3s you’ll reap, but those values were measured in the fish BEFORE canning. canning at high heat destroys heat-labile Omega-3s. why do they get away with this misleading labelling? because they have a powerful slick effective Lobby.

5. live according to your values. humans are self-justification machines, and we can convince our rational mind, for example, that it is OK to eat factory farmed meat, or buy clothes made by child-labour, or drive a car when we could walk/bus/bike, but your heart & soul know that every dollar is a vote.  we shape our reality in many ways, and money is just one way to exchange energy. right now, in Western culture, your consumer choices largely determine what corporations do. so tell them to play nice, ‘K?

6. i listened in on Bec Robbins recent telesummit with 30+ health & wellness, spiritual, and financial experts. as per a lot of previous learning, a key to happiness that kept coming up: express gratitude. whatever you express sincere gratitude for, you’ll get more of it.

7. another key to happiness: have your own meaningful Daily Practice.

more on all that soon!

Keep Shining,