Here are copies of the wall posters at UK workshop for those who asked for them.



                                    THE INVITATION       


It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for, and if you dare to dream of meeting your hearts longing. It doesn’t interest me how old you are. I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dreams, for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me is true. I want to know if you can disappoint another to be true to yourself, if you can bear the accusation of betrayal and not betray your own soul. I want to know if you can be faithless and therefore be trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see beauty even when it is not pretty every day, and if you source your life from it’s presence. I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine, and still stand on the edge of the lake and shout to the silver of the full moon, ‘YES’.

It doesn’t interest me to know where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after the night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone, and do what needs to be done for the children.

It doesn’t interest me who you know or how you came to be here. I want to know if you will stand in the centre of the fire with me and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom you have studied. I want to know what sustains you from the inside when all else falls away. I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and if you truly like the company you keep in empty moments.


© 1999 Oriah Mountain Dreamer HarperCollins San Francisco


How  'The Invitation' came to be written.


A Life of Its Own

An Essay by Oriah Mountain Dreamer

I don't like parties. I rarely go to them. When I do, I often feel I should be somewhere else. Once in a while, however, berating myself for being antisocial and concerned for my dwindling social life, I take myself to a party with self-admonishments to mingle.

That's what happened in the spring of 1994. I went to a party--an ordinary party--and I made an effort, a real effort, to be sociable. I asked and answered the usual questions: What do you do for a living? How do you know the host? Where did you study? Where do you live? And I came home with the familiar, hollow feeling of having gone through the motions. So, I sat down and did what I often do to sort out what is going on--I wrote. Using the format of a writing exercise that had been given to me by poet David Whyte, I wrote about the party conversations--what really did not interest me and what I really did want to know about others, about myself. I went to the center of the ache for something more between myself and the world, and the prose- poem "The Invitation" poured onto the page.

A week later I included the piece in a newsletter I was sending to 800 students who had, over the previous 10 years, come to workshops I had facilitated on spirituality, sexuality, and creativity. I sent it exactly as it had been written that night. I didn't think much about it. I'd shared many pieces of writing with folks on my mailing list over the years, often hearing back from those who felt a particular piece spoke to them.

But this time, something different happened. People started copying and sharing "The Invitation," and I began hearing from hundreds of people I didn't know. A woman wrote from New Zealand where the piece had been read at a large spiritual gathering. A man in the States wrote of reading the piece at the funeral of a dear friend who had died of AIDS. Individuals as far away as Romania, Iceland, Greenland, and South Africa wrote that someone had sent them "The Invitation" via e-mail, handed it out at a wedding, or read it aloud at a workshop or conference. It seemed to have a life of its own.

It was Joe Durepos, a literary agent in Chicago who had contacted me to ask permission for the piece to be used in Jean Houston's book, "A Passion for the Possible," who suggested that I consider writing a book based on "The Invitation." I started writing, and Joe sold the first few chapters to Harper San Francisco.

The prose-poem had touched others with a voice that cut through to what really matters. I didn't want the book to be a watered-down version of the original piece or a heady analysis of its heart-felt sense of urgency. I wanted it to be as raw and as real as the prose-poem, to offer the receptive reader a chance to actually go to the places mapped out by "The Invitation." To fulfil this promise, I had to go to those places myself.

I went to a cabin owned by some friends and started writing, using each segment of the original piece as a doorway into deeper places--the longing, the joy, the sorrow, the fear-- reflecting with ruthless honesty on the meaning and struggles of a human life. I wrote what I need to remember, what I need to hear again and again: that life is full of beauty and pain; that the world will break your heart and heal it, over and over, if you let it, and that letting it do both is the only way to live fully; that we are not alone but rather deeply connected to that which creates and sustains all life. Aided by Harper San Francisco editor Karen Levine, I distilled the stories down to their essence and offered meditations at the conclusion of each chapter, meditations that had helped me walk through the doorways "The Invitation" had opened.

Life is hard. And life is wonderful. "The Invitation" is about finding what we need--the inspiration, the intimacy, the courage, and the commitment to live fully, every day.


* * *

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MY LAW -  Tieme Ranapiri                  
The sun may be clouded, yet ever the sun 
Will sweep on its course till the Cycle is run. 
And when into chaos the system is hurled 
Again shall the Builder reshape a new world.
Your path may be clouded, uncertain your goal 
Move on - for your orbit is fixed to your soul. 
And though it may lead into darkness of night 
The torch of the Builder shall give it new light.
You were. You will be! Know this while you are: 
Your spirit has travelled both long and afar. 
It came from the Source, to the Source it returns 
The Spark which was lighted eternally burns.
It slept in a jewel. It slept in a wave.
It roamed in the forest. It rose from the grave. 
It took on strange garbs for long aeons of years 
And now in the soul of yourself It appears.
From body to body your spirit speeds on
It seeks a new form when the old one has gone
And the form that it finds is the fabric you wrought 
On the loom of the Mind from the fibre of Thought. 

As dew is drawn upwards, in rain to descend
Your thoughts drift away and in Destiny blend. 
You cannot escape them, for petty or great,
Or evil or noble, they fashion your Fate.
Somewhere on some planet, sometime-and somehow 
Your life will reflect your thoughts of your Now.
My Law is unerring, no blood can atone -
The structure you built you will live in - alone.

From cycle to cycle, through time and through space 
Your lives with your longings will ever keep pace
And all that you ask for, and all you desire
Must come at your bidding, as flame out of fire
Once list' to that Voice and all tumult is done 
Your life is the Life of the Infinite One.
In the hurrying race you are conscious of pause
With love for the purpose, and love for the Cause.
You are your own Devil, you are your own God 
You fashioned the paths your footsteps have trod. 
And no one can save you from Error or Sin 
Until you have hark'd to the Spirit within.

Attributed to a Maori. 

After a while you learn the subtle difference

Between holding a hand and chaining a soul.

And you learn that love doesn't mean leaning

And that company doesn't mean security.

And you begin to learn that kisses aren't contracts

And presents aren't promises.

And you begin to accept your defeats

With your head held up and your eyes open,

And with the grace of an adult

Not the grief of a child.

And you learn to build all your roads on today

Because tomorrows ground is too uncertain

For your plans.

After a while you learn that even sunshine

Burns if you get too much.

So plant your own garden and decorate your own soul

Instead of waiting for someone to bring you flowers.

And you will learn that you can endure

That you are really special

And that you really do have worth.

So live to learn and love yourself

In doing so, you will learn to live.




as though

no one is watching you


as though

no one can hear you


as though you

have never been hurt


as though

Heaven is on Earth.



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Thank you for everything

I have no complaints whatsoever




If you can't see the inherent perfection in all things

and in all aspects of your life,

simply make yourself larger


Expand your perspective

until the full perfection

of everything becomes visible.



Live as if you were to die tomorrow

Learn as if you were to live forever



Do not believe anything  because it is said by an authority,
or if it is said to come from angels, or from Gods,
or from an inspired source.                                                                  

Believe it only if you have explored it in your own heart
and mind and body and found it to be true.    

Work out your own path, through diligence.


Guatama Buddha


In every moment we have a choice between the material and eternal worlds.

Choosing to walk the eternal spirit path sends a great call to the universe that we desire to live Heaven on Earth and awaken our full potential.

The degree to which we choose the eternal spirit will be in direct proportion to the degree we awaken our consciousness.

We are being challenged to walk a path of integrity, honour, truth, peace, love and compassion.

We are being asked to apply deep spiritual truths in every moment, with every breath: walking in the Light of our Inner Sun and the Light of the Masters who walked this path before us.

In these last days of the millennium, the choices are many - and confusion and fear is in a race to gain our spirits.

But fear has no hold on us, for the Light is growing within and victory is at hand.


The Master Jesus

Palenque, Mexico.




Invocation of Archangel Michael


Dear Lord Archangel Michael

I call to you and your legions this day

To wrap me in  the blue veil of your protection.


Let it descend upon me like a mantle

And be sealed and held in the grip of Mother Goddess Earth,

sourced by her white-fire core,

protecting me from all but the Highest levels of Light

of Mother - Father God.


Protect me

where this be for Higher Good

from all non-Christed sources,

from astral entities and negative energy

planetary, interplanetary and universal,

above and below me

to my right and to my left

in front and behind me,


on this and all planes of existence

in this and all levels of consciousness,

in this and all dimensions of time,

known or unknown,

now and forever.




We are the New Civilization

We are the New Civilization 
We are here.
We are waking up now, out of the past, to dream a bigger dream.
We are friends and equals, we are diverse and unique, and we're united for something bigger than our differences.
We believe in freedom and cooperation, abundance and harmony.
We are a culture emerging, a renaissance of the essence of humanity.
We find our own guidance, and we discern our own truth.
We go in many directions, and yet we refuse to disperse.
We have many names, we speak many languages.
We are local, we are global.
We are in all regions of the world, we're everywhere in the air.
We are universe being aware of itself, we are the wave of evolution.
We are in every child's eyes, we face the unknown with wonder and excitement.
We are messengers from the future, living in the present.
We come from silence, and we speak our truth.
We cannot be quieted, because our voice is within everyone.
We have no enemies, no boundaries can hold us.
We respect the cycles and expressions of nature, because we are nature.
We don't play to win, we play to live and learn.
We act out of inspiration, love and integrity.
We explore, we discover, we feel, and we laugh.
We are building a world that works for everyone.
We endeavour to live our lives to their fullest potential.
We are independent, self-sufficient and responsible.
We relate to each other in peace, with compassion and respect, we unite in community.
We celebrate the wholeness within and around us all.
We dance to the rhythm of creation.
We weave the threads of the new times.
We are the new civilization.





©Copyright Sandy Stevenson