A backstory on a journey that began July 9, 2018.
Our gift to shine our uniquely own light here in this life sometimes gets overshadowed. Having spent a week in March at an intensive coaching course with 10 other women, and 1 very open-minded guy, I am blown away by the messages that we all somehow internalize, prohibiting us from shining true. I watched several of my classmates process inner blocks, emotions, and reach for growth. It was beautiful. It was freeing. The general theme throughout these blocks included the I am not enough, I am not deserving, I shouldn’t shine.
About Arial Starr:
When I wrote and released my first book this year, Dream Big, Live Large, Love More-15 Lessons Learned: Memoirs from a Truck Driver’s Daughter, my vision was to empower others by sharing my story, provide writing and art prompts, to encourage others to be true to themselves. I wanted to be a voice of empowerment for people to share their inner love and light. By being your true, raw self, you are providing this world with the energy that we all need to stay interconnected with divine love. And when I wrote this book, I don’t know that I believed in myself to share my story with the world. I just wanted to put it ‘out to the universe’ and see what happened.
Vision of Inner Peace on a Bigger Level:
Last fall, right after the shootings in Las Vegas, I was reading a lot of research discussing the role that social isolation and loneliness plays in our health and mortality, and, learning that the feeling of shame can play a major role in violence1-2. I began to think about the role social media and the internet plays in these topics. I started doing research on how social media can be a positive connector if it provokes interaction amongst others, but can contribute to feelings of social isolation, loneliness and negative self worth if people simply peruse and consume social media feeds without interaction3. I have thought about the strength and power in numbers positive thinking. What if, as a collective whole, we vibrated at a radiant strength and power of love? What if that meant self-love, self-recognition, and permission to be our true, shining, vibrant selves without shame or guilt? What if fear was set aside for just a portion of the day, with masses of people just being their genuine loving beings? Could we override the negative shit that fills our brains, our comparison-itis, negative self talk that ensues on a daily basis? What if we could honor our true light, without shame or guilt? And, how do we get to this place of peace and inner acceptance? Well… my best guess is through the power of positive thinking, positive reinforcement and meditation to calm those beastly negative thoughts that get in our own way.
I was intrigued. The inner researcher in me started looking into the possibility of trying to reach more people to spread this message of love. Hutcherson et al that determined that spending just a few minutes of love and kindness meditation has the ability to impact our social interconnectedness 4. I came across a landmark study from Hagen et al conducted in Washington DC in the 1990’s. In this study a group of Transcendational Mediation experts sat for 2 weeks, holding positive intentions for the city in efforts to reduce homicides, rapes and assaults (HRA crimes). The result? It worked. Over the 2-week period of time, these HRA crimes dropped at times as much as 23.3% 5. Further reading on the Maharishi Effect determined that there is a critical number shown in some research referred to as the super radiance equation where there can be a positive impact. The equation suggests that in order for there to be an effect on the meditation, the number of people required to come together with positive frequency is estimated to be the square root of 1% of the population 6. In the case of the United States this would have equated at the time to approximately 1700 people meditating during the Hagen et al study. However, over the course of the 2 week study, nearly 4000 people showed up at the Capital to participate (essentially 57% more people than the predicted threshold of the radiance).
With a little math (not my strongest suit) and the help of a few websites to determine the square root of the US population (currently estimated at 326,141,301 by http://www.worldometers.info/world-population/us-population/), I have decided that I would like Arial Starr to reach at the very least 1800 to spread the message of love, self love and appreciation, mediation and peace on the same day. However, just as the threshold of radiance was exceeded in Hagen’s study, my goal would be to actually reach 10,000 people with this message. My vision to help mitigate violence, promote interconnectedness and peace will begin by trying to reach at least 10,000 people on July 9, 2018. On this day at 8:00 AM PST, I would like people to stop what they are doing, take 2 minutes to pause, close your eyes, and focus on breathing while honoring your inner light and respecting you. I will put together a guided meditation for this day and occasion and will post here online and through as many resources as I can. However, a simple Kundalini saying may help guide the practice:
May the long time sun
Shine upon you,
All love surround you,
And the pure light within you
Guide your way on.
There are so many ways that we can help support each other and promote a more peaceful and loving existence. Spending time to believe in ourselves and in each other is just one simple and beautiful way that we can have a positive impact on the world.
1) Brown, B. (2017). Braving the wilderness: the quest for true belonging and the courage to stand alone. London: Vermilion.
2) Valtorta, N. K., Kanaan, M., Gilbody, S., Ronzi, S., & Hanratty, B. (2016). Loneliness and social isolation as risk factors for coronary heart disease and stroke: systematic review and meta-analysis of longitudinal observational studies. Heart, 102(13), 1009-1016.
3) Social Network Sites and Well-Being: The Role of Social Connection. Jenna L. Clark, Sara B. Algoe, and Melanie C. Green. Current Directions in Psychological Science. Vol 27, Issue 1, pp. 32 - 37.
4) Hutcherson, C. A., Seppala, E. M., & Gross, J. J. (2008). Loving-kindness meditation increases social connectedness. Emotion, 8(5), 720.
5) Hagelin, J. S., Rainforth, M. V., Cavanaugh, K. L., Alexander, C. N., Shatkin, S. F., Davies, J. L., ... & Orme-Johnson, D. W. (1999). Effects of group practice of the transcendental meditation program on preventing violent crime in Washington, DC: Results of the National Demonstration Project, June--July 1993. Social Indicators Research, 47(2), 153-201.
6) Schneider, R. S., Charles, B., Sands, D., Gerace, D. D., Averbach, R. E., & Rothenberg, S. (1997). The significance of the Maharishi Vedic Approach to Health for modern health care and medical education. Mod Sci Vedic Sci, 7(1), 299-315.