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Your Gifted, Sensitive Body! Next Friday!

Can’t make it? Sessions are recorded and come with a pdf.  Individual follow-up is available.
Gifted and sensitive people are crucial to healthy community. We become teachers, healers, spiritual guides, activists and artists. But without mentoring and guidance for our initiations we tend to struggle, isolate, become ill, discouraged, enraged and pulled toward addiction. Increased violence toward self and others may result from the lack of supportive, sacred grounding for gifted, sensitive bodies. 
Statistically, one in five feel more and sense more than our peers. W. Thomas Boyce MD  calls us the Orchids and the Dandelions. I believe this math is part of nature’s design. But without recognition, tools,  creativity, and community support we are misfits with abilities that some call weird. We get “diagnosed” for being too big or too small, and struggle with balancing energy. We get overwhelmed or grow calloused.  

Are you gifted and sensitive? Know someone who is?  The upcoming 90-minute trainings help us shift from labeling ourselves or others as overly sensitive to being credentialed members of the “One-In-Five Gifted, Sensitive and Body Wise Club.”

We’ll incorporate tools from InterPlay, a creative framework for body wisdom full of supportive strategies that make sensitivity understandable, manageable and fun.  I’ll survey the initiations that sensitive bodies encounter and give you a peek at How to Live Your Glorious Life No Matter What with instruction on the art of ensoulment using the Self-Care Playbook for Sensitive Leaders and Mystics.

Join either 90-minute training to receive the 24-page Spiritual Instruction Module, Credentialed as Mystics: How to Honor Gifted and Sensitive People covering

• What are Your Soul Credentials?
• You’re Not Sick, You’re Sensitive! Recognizing the 1-in-5
• How to Make Sensitivity More Fun
• Playing with Initiations
• Initiated by the Nature of Life
• Initiation Inventories for One-In-Fivers
• How You Are Credentialed to Serve


This offering is through Cynthia Winton-Henry, not Body Wisdom.

Workshop, recording, and pdf $25
With an Individual session $75                      
available at lower prices.


To register

or send a check to Cynthia Winton-Henry
2273 Telegraph Ave, Oakland CA 94612
Venmo payments also accepted.

Wisdom for Gifted and Sensitive Bodies



In an hour-long training, we shift from labeling people as overly sensitive to getting recognized as members of the “One-In-Five” Club, Those who are Gifted, Sensitive and potentially Body Wise People. We will meet on zoom’s easy to access visual, live internet meeting space. View the recording at your convenience.

Afterward, join the live Q and A time to explore these gifts and sensitivities and learn about the SelfCare Playbook for Sensitive Leaders and Mystics. 
You may also choose to sign up for an individual session.

We’ll incorporate tools from InterPlay, a creative framework for body wisdom that offers supportive strategies to make sensitivity understandable, manageable and fun.  I’ll point you to initiation rituals for sensitive bodies that explore Your Glorious Life and  “How To Be Credentialed to Serve.” 

Registrants receive a 24-page Spiritual Instruction Module, Credentialed as Mystics: How to Honor Gifted and Sensitive People that covers

• What are Your Soul Credentials?
• You’re Not Sick, You’re Sensitive! Recognizing the 1-in-5
• How to Make Sensitivity More Fun
• Playing with Initiations
• Initiated by the Nature of Life
• Initiation Inventories for One-In-Fivers
• How You Are Credentialed to Serve

This offering is through Cynthia Winton-Henry, not Body Wisdom.



Workshop recording, and pdf $25 Total
Individual session $75 Total
Are you an InterPlay Leader? Get coached to lead this material with resources for sensitive parents and/or kids.  $195                         

All available at lower prices.


To register

or send a check to Cynthia Winton-Henry
2273 Telegraph Ave, Oakland CA 94612


Self-Care Playbook for Mystics and Sensitive Leaders: A Year on the Art of Ensoulment

In the coming days, how will you, as a mystic and sensitive leader, dance in body, mind, heart and soul? How will you stay true to the ethic of love, play, and your sacred relationship with life without succumbing to fear, despair, or rage?

I invite you to spend the coming year, starting in January, on your Glorious Life. Learn the things that mystics and sensitives need now more than ever. 

I’ve spent the last decade designing these 12 Online Workshops to help you track and lead the way to ensoulment. Workshops always include time for movement, voice, storytelling, and stillness.

In addition to a monthly two-hour workshop. you’ll receive chapters from The New Self-Care Playbook for Mystics and Sensitives, occasional Videos, and a Forum for Online Community Support. You can consider adding monthly coaching to address your unique experience. If you have been working with me, I am going to give you a big discount to continue to study and practice.

You’ll meet leaders who know the challenge of mysticism and leadership to share with us as we go along!

Purpose of the Course

To be ensouled is to dance the wise beauty of the cosmos. This is not an individual task. All of Life initiates and teaches us our place in the dance. To be centered in your Soul is to know your challenges as initiations.

To find the blessings of the dance depends on how you meet your initiations. You do not have to be perfect. You only have to dance.

The dance of ensoulment is a journey of fully opening to the joy and suffering of your human body. As you do you attune to the physicality of your Soul. It’s here that you gain strength to endure, rejoice, and know peace. A big secret is that Nature, Dance, Song, and Sacred SIlence are the fastest ways to sense soul or what some call fundamental consciousness.

The ancient initiations into embodied wisdom can be tricky to find. That is why I created the Hidden Monastery, to make it a teeny bit easier to practice the artful dance of body AND soul.

This course attunes you to

  • your primal desires of body and soul: to create, play and rest
  • your readiness to heed the Three Directives: efficiency of energy, clarity of vision, and courage to love.
  • 12 arts in the dance of ensoulment and how to practice them.
  • your spontaneity as the signature of your free will, and how to return synergy and synchronicity to center stage.

To enroll for this year-long course send your deposit of $80.00 to
Cynthia Winton-Henry at  2273 Telegraph Ave, Oakland, CA 94612
or through PayPal . I also accept Venmo payments.

You’ll receive monthly module documents, videos, and coaching support starting in January.  Time TBA. I’ll arrange your monthly coaching appts with you when you enroll.

  • $80/month includes a monthly online workshop
  • $120/month include one-to-one monthly coaching

To repeat this program I’ll discount the course. And, I suggest one to one coaching as most of us need ongoing support with these 12 initiations.



12 arts in the dance of ensoulment and how to practice them.

Your Core Lifeiations

Initiation One: If You Don’t Pray It Can Kill You: Invoke Your Soul TeamCommunity, Teachers, Ancestors, both seen and unseen. Honor them, and you will be on your way to supportive, divine initiations.

Initiation Two: Don’t Count on Your iPhone for Wisdom: Activate Your Real Flow-Power the power to move, tell, voice, and just be. Upload the unique hidden and visible gifts that generate the flow that allows you to listen in and learn from mystery.

Initiation Three You Really Here Are Here On Purpose–You just need to differentiate your gifts, calls, and your needs to divine your purpose. Put on your seatbelt as you activate the poetry of the purpose shining through your soul credentials.

Initiation Four: Don’t Get Over Yourself, Be Human: Bow to Your Human Limits– Everything from this point forward embraces death and appetite as part of body wisdom. All you have to do is practice the art of bowing.

Initiate Your Super Powers

Initiation Five: Denounce Forced Integration and the Socialization of Bigger and Higher is Better–Learn to InterPlay Between Your Big and Little Bodyspirit, Honor Ordinary Life and Find Serenity.

Initiation Six: Break Out of Old Narrow Ways of Seeing that Inhibit Soul to Claim Your Soul Sight– Your brain sees in all directions. Practice seeing from both your higher and your ordinary self using your mystic gyroscope.

Initiation Seven: Recover from Being Overly Responsible for Things You Cannot Change: Know Your Body And Release Things Inside You That Are Not Yours– Honor mirror neurons. Practice shaking and dancing to neutralize, cleanse connections.

Initiation Eight: Refuse Getting Boxed In: Enjoy and Balance Your Power Centers and Enneagram Points– Check in with your Kundalini Driver, Belly Collaborator, Heart Organizer, and Crownstar Visionary. Use the EQ quiz to foster a more beautiful dance across all nine points of the Enneagram.

Initiation Nine: Liberate yourself from the Western Clock, Take Your Time & Take Your SpaceSlow down and speed up time. Learn how to expand and contract physical space and enjoy life.

Your Sacred Interactivity

Initiation Ten: No Trespassing, even those who love me, Tend Your Sacred Cords and Body Agreements. Are you troubled by your relationships? We’re connected kinesthetically, in an energetic field alive with cords. Rules of engagement across systems, seen and unseen, are needed to respect your body wisdom.

Initiation Eleven: Navigate Worst Nightmares of Shunning, Rage, and DespairBuild Your Courage to Love. Attach to Guidance that loves your highest good. Learn What it is to Trust Your Power. Dance 5 Dynamics of Change: Instead of trying to let go, invite bodies to play with change.

Initiation 12 Play as if Life depended on it: Dance with Your Magical Spontaneous Hook-Up. Play the Field– Use your Heart Mic. Practice the art of ecstatic following Connect and drop connections. Stream the Field. Direct your kinesthetic imagination to track soul.

With you in the mystic and everyday dance both hidden and revealed,

Link here to enroll.


Join me next Spring in Santa Fe for a week of Renewal and Amazing Spiritual Teachers

I am pleased to announce that Soyinka Rahim and I will offer a workshop at the 30th-anniversary conference of Spiritual Directors International next April 21-24 in Santa Fe,  with the additional possibility of a quiet Hidden Monastery Retreat beforehand.

The Spiritual Directors International Conference days are full of offerings from Sr. Joan Chittister, Dr. Barbara Holmes, Roshi Joan Halifax, Fr. Richard Rohr, Woman Stands Shining (Pat McCabe), Mirabai Starr, Lucy Abbott Tucker, Adam Bucko and workshops by people like Bayo Akomolafe and other diverse, embodied, contemporary wisdom teachers. Several of us are InterPlayers including Chris Copeland and Jane Vennard. Click here to see the workshop teachers. 

As you know a conference is not a retreat. That is why I want to offer additional, affordable, quiet days beforehand  (89 for room and board per night) at Pecos Benedictine Monastery’s Our Lady of Guadalupe Abbey located in the Pecos River Canyon 25 miles east of Santa Fe. To hold the space I’d like to know if you would enjoy time with our Hidden Monastery of body-wise mystics, artists, and contemplative activists. There will be earth time, solo time and group space for artful reflection. (You may choose to attend this retreat and not the Spiritual Directors Conference.)  Please respond if you would choose to come Monday, April 20 or Tuesday, April 21 through Thursday, April 22, the first day of the SDI conference. Would you email me your thoughts?

If you want and haven’t registered yet for the conference, see what’s on offer.*Super Early Bird Pricing of $499 for SDI Members, $599 for non-Members until 11:59pm PST on September 15, 2019. Early Bird: $575 SDI Members, $675 for non-Members from September 16 through January 31, 2020. Regular Price: $649 for SDI Members, $749 for non-Members.

Why I’m a member of Spiritual Directors International. 
I receive support from therapists, coaches, body-workers, and energy healers. When I entered seminary, it became clear that my focus is Body and Soul. As I attune to the sacred in myself and others I am able to companion others in a unique and profound way. As it turns out my spiritual director is my supervisor and primary witness whether I am struggling or feeling great.  
The origins of Spiritual Directors International came out of the bay area. I know the leader as wise and beautiful people and am gladdened by the growth of SDI. It is good to be in a professional community of people who are reflecting and occasionally meeting together. 
I recommend the work of spiritual direction to you in gratitude for all the hidden monasteries that we tend. 
Much Love,

What do the movements of Thrust, Hang, Swing, and Shape have to do with ensouling one’s life?


In one of the Ensoulment Initiation monthly sessions, I focus on ensouling the diversity of Thrust, Hang, Swing, and Shape by teaching where each movement pattern centers in our body. As we attune to body AND soul we don’t let go of our body wisdom. We seek to embrace joy, suffering, and challenges as paths to wisdom. I’ve found that in order to do this, we often enter an “initiation” as we take on the support and tools needed to incorporate wholeness.

How does bringing them into balance assist in letting soul shine?

In my body when I presence all four centers of these primal patterns, I feel like I do when I dance. Yum. I’m grateful that I can play with each pattern and its offering both on the individual and collective level. And I am REALLY grateful to call the patterns into cooperative alignment.

In what way do you ensoul the wisdom of Hang (the “open to the field” visionary), Swing (the community-based collaborator), Thrust (the warm, earth-grounded driver), and Shape (the heart-centered organizer)? 

When we resist any life experience within or outside of us, an initiation awaits. You may choose to engage with your resistance or let life work on you indirectly. (What we resist persists). Either way is fine. Soul is in no rush. But I find that the fruits of ensoulment –peace, compassion, joy, connectedness, presence, love, and happiness– are worth engaging the harder stuff.

InterPlayers are lucky because we play with the language, idea, and experience of the four patterns every time we meet. We are initiated in their presence. Sometimes, we get stuck in saying we are one thing or another. Over time, I found that my most relaxed and soulful way of being, swing and hang, required a deep incorporation of thrust. Until my thruster could express its energy and be loved, a graceful balance wasn’t possible.

I am so thankful for colleagues like Marcia McFee who dance and teach from Soul. Her research is included in the 12 sets of ensoulment initiation tools in my year long course on ensoulment initiations. Coming from a background as a professional dancer, she ably joined InterPlay’s Wing It! Performance Ensemble and did the Life Practice Program. There she learned about the movement patterns and went on to complete a Ph.D. at the Graduate Theological Union in Liturgical Studies with an Allied Field of Ethics. Her focus on ritual featured the Four Movement Patterns as The Primal Patterns. Today, Today, Marcia travels all over offering a powerful worship design studio helping church leaders to bring body and soul, wisely, fully, justly and beautifully into the community.  As Marcia knows, it isn’t easy to speak in the language of body and soul. I so appreciate how clearly she names this challenge and is helping people to move personally and collectively into soulful, embodied practice.

In regards to the Primal Patterns: Towards a Kinesthetic Hermeneutic, Marcia says,

“Kinesiologists have found that a person’s dominant pattern (called a “home pattern”), based on their particular neuromuscular excitation,[1] affects the energy with which they move in the world, perceive the world around them, and thus, behave in relationship to that world. They are patterns of “somatic integration” and are a psychomotor connection between movement qualities and cognitive/affective processes of the brain.[2]

Like the best sense of the word “home,” a home pattern is one in which we find our greatest ease of expression and resonance in terms of energetic identity. The difference in energy between persons depends upon the amount of force and timing with which their muscles “fire.” Although we use all the patterns, our home pattern is one in which we feel most like “ourselves.”   Cynthia Winton-Henry describes her experience of finding “home.”

I was forever trying to hold myself in. I felt too big and too weird most of the time. I judged my energetic bursts of joy, anger, and opinion. I was self-conscious about my high level of activity… When I realized that thrusting was an intrinsic part of my unique nature and not a personality defect, I was relieved. The more I let my energy move out from my center in strong, joyous beams, the more I felt inner peace and clarity in my body.[3]

In Winton-Henry’s account, we see that each home pattern has its own characteristics that make it distinct from other patterns in its formative effects.   Energy patterns are characterized by “what you can feel and what works in and around people… It is the power and motion that is inside a person and that also combines with the power inside other people too.”[4] Because the dynamics of ritual are created by individuals who “body forth” the power and motion at work inside them through various media in the context of community, the dynamics of ritual may also be described in terms of these Primal Patterns. Various ritual strategies carry dominant patterns of energy dynamics, each having their own characteristics and effects. The energy dynamics of ritual are produced as bodies enact these various kinesthetic attributes through ritual performance. Thus, we can observe and describe dominant patterns of energy dynamics as ritual strategies that are determinative of particular energetic effects. In other words, variations of energy patterns have implications for “what ritual effects.”[5] 

[1] Neuromuscular excitation refers to the stimulation of the nerve cells (neurons) of the muscular system which creates the particular force and timing of muscle movement.

[2] For more on the neurophysiological process of formation through ritual, see Marcia McFee, Primal Patterns: Ritual Dynamics, Ritual Resonance, Polyrhythmic Strategies and the Formation of Christian Disciples, Graduate Theological Union, dissertation (Berkeley, 2005), 146-184.

[3] Cynthia Winton-Henry with Phil Porter, What the Body Wants (Kelowna, BC: Northstone Publishing, 2004), 72.

[4] A Macumba-Christian priestess as cited in Valerie DeMarinis, “Movement as Mediator of Meaning: An Investigation of the Psychosocial and Spiritual Function of Dance in Religious Ritual,” in Doug Adams and Diane Apostolos-Cappadona, eds., Dance as Religious Studies (New York: Crossroads Publishing Company, 1990), 201.

[5] In Ricouer’s discussion of hermeneutics, there is always a “dynamic, relative tension” between “sense” and “reference.” The “sense” is “what is said”–in our case, the kinesthetic attributes of the patterns themselves. The “reference” is about its “extra-linguistic reality”–the “about which” of the patterns that is the associative images produced by particular dynamics. The dialectic here is the confluence of physiology and a “philosophy/theology of the flesh” for a kinesthetic hermeneutic. See Joyce Ann Zimmerman, C.P.P.S., Liturgy and Hermeneutics (Collegeville: The Liturgical Press, 1999), 37-39 for a brief discussion of Ricouer. For an extended treatment, see Joyce Ann Zimmerman, Liturgy as Language of Faith: A Liturgical Methodology in the Mode of Paul Ricoeur’s Textual Hermeneutics (Lanham: University Press of America, 1988).

Always keen to hear your thoughts and comments. 


Love, Cynthia





What is Soul? Ask a poet.

I am so pleased I found Ursula LeGuin’s rendition of the Tao te Ching: A Book About the Way and the Power of the Way published in 1997. The very first poem, “Taoing” gives us sage advice

The way you can go
isn’t the real way.
The name you can say
isn’t the real name.


Sarah Carlson


And yet we try.

In contemplating soul almost daily, I track and “want” soul. Or is it that I need soul as never before in times of climate threat and human cacophony? The same poem says,

So the unwanting soul
sees what’s hidden
and the ever-wanting soul
sees only what it wants.

Aligning body and soul to the Beloved Power and Mystery beyond human chaos IS needful. I feel it in my body. But as the poem goes on,

Two things, one origin
but different in name,
whose identity is mystery.
Mystery of all mysteries!
The door to the hidden.

So there is a door.

I recently began seeing quotes on soul. I wrote them down. To my delight, Rob Brezny was way ahead of me. He recently sent a gaggle of soul quotes. Thank you, Rob, master artist of the English Language, astrological wizard, trumpeter for the Truth and Beaty Lab, and author of Pronoia! You can get his weekly readings here. Most of the quotes below were in his last newsletter.

Mystics, contemplatives, young and old sensitives, attendants to what can’t be named, innkeepers of the holy, it’s our job to keep the light on for The Way as others did before us. Whether we do it with touch, a glance, a kindness, a breath a song or a word– we know something hidden.

There is a door.




The entire universe contributes incessantly to your existence. Hence the entire universe is your body.

—Sri Nisargadatta Maharaj


One in body and soul, . . Though outwardly separate in form. As the Source strikes the note, Humanity sings

—Mechtilde de Magdeburg


“I call the high and light aspects of my being spirit and the dark and heavy aspects soul.”
“Soul is at home in the deep, shaded valleys. Heavy torpid flowers saturated with black grow there. The rivers flow like warm syrup.”
“Spirit is a land of high, white peaks and glittering jewel-like lakes and flowers. Life is sparse and sounds travel great distances.”

—The Dalai Lama, as quoted by James Hillman in “A Blue Fire”

Soul is something creative, something active. Soul is honesty. I sing to people about what matters. I sing to the realists, people who accept it like it is. I express problems; there are tears when it’s sad and smiles when it’s happy. It seems simple to me, but to some, feelings take courage.
—Aretha Franklin


let my body dwell in poverty, and my hands be as the hands of the toiler;
but let my soul be as a temple of remembrance
where the treasures of knowledge enter
and the inner sanctuary is hope.”

― George Eliot


The soul is shy

―Trish Watts


Love’s mysteries in souls do grow, but yet the body is the book.

―John Donne


The self is something we lay claim to. The soul is what lays claim to us. Soulfulness is not a human quality. It is a quality that human beings partake in, a quality that can be found in how you move, how you see things, how you talk and ponder and eat and love. Soulfulness is the tea and rice of your life. It is a kind of language, and in its calm face we can recognize ourselves and each other, and we can see the way of the holy and the way the natural world has of being itself. The souls way makes and sustains our kinship with the world and with strangers, and as we have seen, there is hell to pay when this kinship is forgotten. the world soul contains and embraces and sustains all those things that human beings find are implacable and opposite, and it gives humans a means of understanding how to live inside their contending ways. With this quality of soulfulness in our minds, we are now on the track of our soul’s desires.

―Stephen Jenkinson, Money and the Soul’s Desires: A Meditation


The soul will not be confined; nor will its explosive power be contained: “The soul has moments of escape – / When bursting all the doors – / She dances like a Bomb, abroad, / And swings opon the Hours.

―Emily Dickinson


The dream is the small hidden door in the deepest and most intimate sanctum of the soul, which opens to that primeval cosmic night that was soul long before there was conscious ego and will be soul far beyond what a conscious ego could ever reach.

—Carl Jung, The Meaning of Psychology for Modern Man (1934).


And god said to the soul
I desired you before the world began.
I desire you now
As you desire me.
And where the desires of two come together
There love is perfected.

—Mechtild of Magdeburg


I am the poet of the body,
And I am the poet of the soul.
The pleasures of heaven are with me, and the pains of
hell are with me,
The first I graft and increase upon myself — the latter I
translate into a new tongue.

—Walt Whitman, “Song of Myself”


How prompt we are to satisfy the hunger and thirst of our bodies; how
slow to satisfy the hunger and thirst of our souls!

—Henry David Thoreau


The soul should always stand ajar,
That if the heaven inquire,
He will not be obliged to wait,
Or shy of troubling her.

—Emily Dickinson


This earth is honey for all beings, and all beings are honey for this earth.
The intelligent, immortal being, the soul of the earth, and the intelligent,
immortal being, the soul in the individual being—each is honey to the

—Brihadaranyaka Upanishad


Ondinnonk is an Iroquois word with two related meanings: 1. a secret wish
of the soul, especially as revealed in dreams; 2. the spiritual part of our
nature that longs to do good deeds.


In the best-known version of the Greek myth, Persephone is dragged down
into the underworld by Hades, whose title is “Pluto.” But in earlier, pre-
patriarchal tales, she descends there under her own power, actively
seeking to graduate from her virginal naiveté by exploring the intriguing
land of shadows.

“Pluto” is derived from the Greek word *plutus*, meaning “wealth.”
Psychologist James Hillman says this refers to the psyche-building
riches available in Pluto’s domain. Hades, he says, is “the giver of
nourishment to the soul.”


Nothing can cure the soul but the senses, just as nothing can cure the
senses but the soul.

—Oscar Wilde


“There is a saying that when the student is ready, the teacher appears,”
writes Clarissa Pinkola Estes. But the magic of that formula may not
unfold with smooth simplicity, she says: “The teacher comes when the
soul, not the ego, is ready. The teacher comes when the soul calls, and
thank goodness—for the ego is never fully ready.”


What is the “soul,” anyway? Is it a ghostly blob of magic stuff within us
that keeps us connected to the world of dreams and the divine realms? Is it
an amorphous metaphor for the secret source of our spiritual power? Is
it a myth that people entertain because they desperately want to believe
there’s more to them than just their physical bodies?

Here’s what I think: The soul is a perspective that pushes us to go deeper
and see further and live wilder. It’s what drives our imagination to flesh
out our raw experience, transforming that chaotic stuff into rich
storylines that animate our love of life.

With the gently propulsive force of the soul, we probe beyond the surface
level of things, working to find the hidden meaning and truer feeling.

—Rob Brezny


Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life.

—Pablo Picasso.


“The works must be conceived with fire in the soul but executed with
clinical coolness,” said the painter Joan Miró in describing his artistic process.


“Sentiment without action is the ruin of the soul,” wrote environmentalist
Edward Abbey.


“I had tended to view waiting as mere passivity,” wrote author Sue Monk
Kidd in her memoir. “When I looked it up in my dictionary, however, I
found that the words ‘passive’ and ‘passion’ come from the same Latin root,
*pati*, which means ‘to endure.’ Waiting is thus both passive and
passionate. It’s a vibrant, contemplative work . . . It involves listening to
disinherited voices within, facing the wounded holes in the soul, the denied
and undiscovered, the places one lives falsely.”


If you need to visualize the soul, think of it as a cross between a wolf
howl, a photon, and a dribble of dark molasses. But what it really is, as
near as I can tell, is a packet of information. It’s a program, a piece of
hyperspatial software designed explicitly to interface with the Mystery.
Not a mystery, mind you, the Mystery. The one that can never be solved.
By waxing soulful you will have granted yourself the possibility of
ecstatic participation in what the ancients considered a divinely animated

—Tom Robbins


As part of the Beauty and Truth Lab’s ongoing crusade to wrestle the
English language into a more formidable servant of the ecstatic impulse,
we’re pleased to present some alternate designations for “soul.” See if any
of the following concoctions feel right coming out of your mouth:

1. undulating superconductor;

2. nectar plasma;

3. golden lather;

4. smoldering crucible;

5. luminous caduceus.

If none of these work for you—or even if they do—have fun creating your
own terms.


“Each person is a story that the Soul of the World wants to tell to itself,”
writes storyteller Michael Meade.


At times it seems to me that I am living my life backwards, and that at the
approach of old age my real youth will begin. My soul was born covered
with wrinkles — wrinkles my ancestors and parents most assiduously put
there and that I had the greatest trouble removing.

– André Gide


The soul moves in circles.—ancient Greek philosopher Plotinus


Sensual pleasure passes and vanishes, but the friendship between us, the
mutual confidence, the delight of the heart, the enchantment of the soul,
these things do not perish and can never be destroyed.

—philosopher Voltaire in a letter to his partner Marie Louise Denis


You will never be able to experience everything. So, please, do poetical
justice to your soul and simply experience yourself.

—Albert Camus


I note the echo that each thing produces as it strikes my soul.



I am not quick moving. I have to wait for myself—it is always late before
the water comes to light out of the well of my self, and I often have to
endure thirst for longer than I have patience. That is why I go into solitude
— so as not to drink out of everybody’s cistern.

When I am among the many I live as the many do, and I do not think as I
really think; after a time it always seems as though they want to banish
me from myself and rob me of my soul—and I grow angry with everybody
and fear everybody. I then require the desert, so as to grow good again.

—Friedrich Nietzsche