An Offering of Beauty to Life

Giving gifts to life. 

Consider this -- Balinese make beautiful handmade offerings every single day to entice, appease and appeal to the Spirits -- to keep the world in balance.  To bring good fortune.  To show appreciation and gratitude. 

Women of The World; a summit

Early last spring, we  (Andrea Steffens, executive director and Wendy Hawkins, operations director)  attended The Women in the World summit.  

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your favorite blog thus far

After reading through the blogs and looking at the numbers of you who read them, we found that the blog on The Calming Breath has the most "reads."   What we take from this is that you want more practical "what can we do to feel better:" sorts of blogs.  Toward that end, we are beginning a series of "how to" use our arts processes for your own healing beginning with a review of The Calming Breath. Scroll through the blogs until you find it. 

And then what?

After going through Ashlar's educational trauma remediation and Self Care program, we ask our graduates to spend the last two sessions asking these questions: the first series are about personal exploration:  what does it mean to have your life back? How and what have you gained from your experience now you are no longer locked into survival?  How do you want to spend your time now your your mind is no longer a personal and private mine field?  Did your family have a difficult time adjusting to your newly claimed emotional and physical clarity? 

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Something to remember

The Paradoxical Commandments by Dr. Kent M. Keith

 

People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered. Love them anyway.

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Vet to Vet -- an arts driven approach to healing the trauma story

We are very excited to announce the launch of the Vet 2 Vet program with and for vets suffering symptoms of traumatic stress.  We are teaching vets to be Narrative Arts Specialists.  Our goal  is that they take what they have learned and experienced themselves to help other vets suffering symptoms of PTS. Our lead person is Jim Famalero, an artist and Afghan combat vet.

 

Trainings  involve our students going through the processes they will use. Though few in number, our rules are chiseled in stone.  The first: one: Always experience in-depth the processes you are going to use with others. 

When we seek for connection, we restore the world to wholeness and our seemingly separate lives become meaningful

Yesterday was a day of contact with vets  and a reminder of the meaning of what we do at Ashlar:  giving hope and experience in resolving the all too often debilitating symptoms of Post Traumatic Stress.  It is such an honor to be a "player" in supporting people to re-inhabit their lives. Hurricane Sandy was  such a metaphor illuminating the devastation and destruction of  home and community and a very literal vision of the work that lies ahead-- both with the metaphor and the reality.  Making art, making peace.  Rebuilding devastated lives.   

Who We Are

We believe that those who dive deeply into the personal story will emerge in the human story.  

Ashlar Center for Narrative Arts is an arts driven non-profit educational organization that serves the Personal Story.

We are Peace Builders working with the individual and community. 

Our goal is to create the global story of war as experienced through women and children.

Our desire is to nurture relationship, encourage learning, healing  and teaching by exploring and telling the personal and collective Story.

We come to our clients by invitation and with them develop culturally relevant programs.

The goal is building resiliency and capacity through the story telling process and creating a relevant Self-Care program. 

We use spoken word, writing, and arts processes  to extend  language and give voice to the unspoken, to make coherent the life story.  

Our purpose is to give these stories public exposure across platforms.  

While our work is highly therapeutic it is not psychotherapy.

Our processes lie closer to anthropology, and spirituality with their mythological underpinnings.

We invite you to invite us.

Cruise the web page and stay tuned.