10 episodes

Alchemical Dialogues are live and unscripted conversations recorded on Zoom brought to you by the great folks of Amber Light International. We choose topics from our current social and cultural climate, with an emphasis on humanism and spirituality.

Alchemical Dialogues - from Lead to Gold Henry Cretella

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 5.0 • 1 Rating

Alchemical Dialogues are live and unscripted conversations recorded on Zoom brought to you by the great folks of Amber Light International. We choose topics from our current social and cultural climate, with an emphasis on humanism and spirituality.

    Podcast #18- Finding Your Own Way

    Podcast #18- Finding Your Own Way

    Listen to Henry’s lively and humorous conversation with Iqbal Jonathan Lewis, a meditation teacher and disciple of Murshid Samuel L Lewis.

    Warning: This podcast contains occasional mild language that may be uncomfortable for some listeners.

    It may sound like an oxymoron, but Jonathan Lewis, Iqbal, believes that we are already spiritually “awake”; we just don’t know it. This ignorance is a mask. We search elsewhere for what is inside each of us or don’t seek it at all. Our wanderings, when successful, bring us back to ourselves, sometimes with quite a surprise!
    Iqbal Jonathan Lewis is an original disciple of Murshid Samuel L Lewis, having lived with him at Sufi Khankah, the Mentorgarden in San Francisco. Sam was a Sufi Murshid, as well as a recognized Zen Master, and gained illumination at the Anandashram in India under the guidance of Swami Papa Ramdas. OM SRI RAM, JAI RAM, JAI, JAI RAM.

    After Murshid Lewis died, Iqbal studied (hung out) with Joe Miller (Zen) for 20 years, and then Don Gilbert, the 77th Patriarch of the Choe Ge Jong Zen tradition.

    So, what does all of the above have to do with Iqbal Lewis? Nothing and everything. The teacher’s illumination is not the student’s illumination, but it helps enormously to study with a realized teacher. Each of these streams offers incalculable wisdom and methods toward living and realization. If you keep looking through real keyholes, eventually you will see and wake up to the real goal of all life.

    • 1 hr 4 min
    Podcast #17- There is always Hope

    Podcast #17- There is always Hope

    Listen to Henry's candid conversation with Dellenna Harper, a Licensed Master Social Worker and author.

    Warning- This podcast contains sensitive material that may not be suitable for some listeners and listeners with children. Discretion is advised.

    To say that Dellenna Harper’s life has been a roller coaster ride, is a massive understatement. As she so openly describes in her autobiographical work, God’s Teardrop: My journey of healing from addiction and prostitution published in 2020, she barely survived from one day to the next until, in her words, she became “spiritually bankrupt.” Dellenna held on dearly to her values, but was not living them. When she finally bottomed out spiritually, she managed to find that hope and light others had seen in her. From then on, the roller coaster became more like a bullet train, not without its curves, but with a clear direction led by her heart.

    Dellenna Harper is a Licensed Master Social Worker whose passion is advocating for and working with formerly incarcerated women who struggle with mental health, substance abuse, trauma, and other difficult issues. Her former lifestyle that included many of these struggles became the fuel for her healing work. Dellenna is currently Director of Hope Harbor and Harvest Hill Programs at the Salvation Army in Minneapolis, Minnesota. She was previously the Director of Spiritus Christi Prison Outreach Jennifer House in Rochester, N.Y. where she had been a resident in 2006. Dellenna is a proud alumna of Monroe Community College, Nazareth College, and The Greater Rochester Collaborative of SUNY College at Brockport and Nazareth. She was one of the first graduates of the Addictions Counseling Program at MCC. Dellenna was also the recipient of the 2013 Jessica Shackelton Maclay Distinguished Alumni Award, presented by the Nazareth College Social Work Department and was also an honoree for the prestigious Rochester Women’s Network “W” Award.

    God’s Teardrop: My journey of healing from addiction and prostitution is available from booksellers and in e-book formats.

    • 1 hr 1 min
    Podcast #16- The Shift in Human Consciousness

    Podcast #16- The Shift in Human Consciousness

    Listen to Henry's enlightening conversation with Shahabuddin David Less, a meditation teacher and author.

    It is now common to hear how quickly the world is changing and that we aspire to a “new normal.” Despite this, the reality is that we have been conditioned to see and reach for traditional goals. These goals and our conditioning do not serve the evolution required to embrace this revolutionary change in humanity. Without modifying our lens, we will not embody what is needed for the possibilities that lie ahead.

    Shahabuddin David Less, author of Universal Meditations, has taught meditation across the globe for 45 years. He has brought his meditation expertise to directing Whole Heart at Whole Foods Markets, recording over 150 guided meditations to The Winter Feast for The Soul, founding and directing Rising Tide International, a nondenominational meditation and consciousness center in Sarasota, FL.

    David promotes understanding instead of blame as a path to peace in Israel and Palestine via the Abrahamic Reunion, an interfaith peacemaking nonprofit he co-founded in 2004. He is currently Chair of the Board working with a team of Muslim, Jewish, Christian, Druze, and secular peacemakers.

    In 2001, David founded Rising Tide International, a universal spiritual community in Sarasota, FL. He spends the year offering group and individual retreats, workshops, seminars, and classes on inner awakening in the US, UK, Germany, Switzerland, New Zealand, and Australia, in addition to spiritual pilgrimages and tours throughout the world.

    For more information about David’s work or to make a donation:
    Rising Tide International https://risingtideinternational.org/
    Abrahamic Reunion https://www.abrahamicreunion.org/

    • 1 hr
    Podcast #15- The Power of Music to Bring us Together

    Podcast #15- The Power of Music to Bring us Together

    Listen to Henry's conversation with musicians Moksha Sommer and Jemal Wade Hines of the band HuDost, whose transformative music stirs the heart and lifts us into new states. Their journey is an inspiration to all of us to pursue our passion. It is often said that music is the spirituality of the future. The future is here.

    HuDost has a folk quality yet is quite postmodern; the band offers new takes on ancient words and melodies, cross-cultural hybrid transcendental chill-out music with an edge.… This is not fluffy new-age music—it’s serious, complex fare with no aversion to addressing agony. Sommer’s vocal execution is precisely orchestrated, her voice-opening, hollow-toned vortexes piercing through the tough spots… a journey of music and spirit.
    — Chronogram Magazine

    HuDost’s core musicians are Moksha Sommer from Montréal, and Jemal Wade Hines from Kentucky. Having toured the U.S., Canada, and Europe constantly since April 2006, HuDost has grown and expanded. In this time, they have grown as artists, as seekers, as a couple, and as a family. HuDost's music is a powerful expression of life's journey and discovery. In 2008, Moksha went through a painful process of brain surgery due to a tumor. The healing from this included re-learning language skills, losing and regaining proper sight, and experiencing seizures. This could have been staggering but instead served as learning that has fueled a potent desire to bring healing through sound. It is through music that the losses and gains, pains and triumphs, and excruciating beauty of life can be given a voice of empathy to the synonymous lives of all people. Both critics and fans have said time and again that the music of HuDost is this very expression. HuDost’s message comes from real experience, real emotion, and real concern for the world— from the birth of a child, to the healing of the body, to the healing of the planet, their words and music echo the human experience.

    HuDost functions as a duo or as a band, including guest musicians of varying sensibilities and backgrounds, and often including dance in their shows. As a duo, their instrumentation includes vocals, harmonium (Indian Pump-Organ), NORD Keys, guitars, Dulcinet, percussion, and a slew of sonic ambient effects. Their music is a rich, eclectic blending of pop and rock with traditional Sufi music, Bulgarian, Croatian, Macedonian and Balkan folk music, Farsi, Turkish, Arabic, and folk. Their sound crosses all borders and barriers, taking the listener on a journey they will never forget.

    Since 2015, HuDost have also been highly engaged activists, doing advocacy work as KY Congressional District Representatives for ONE, a non-profit organization working to end extreme poverty and, specifically, the sexism of poverty.

    Visit HuDost online!
    Website: www.hudost.com (support the pre-sale campaign for their new album!)
    YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/c/HuDost/
    Instagram: http://instagram.com/_hudost
    Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/hudost/

    • 1 hr 6 min
    Podcast #14- Spiritual Transformation: What it is and How it Happens

    Podcast #14- Spiritual Transformation: What it is and How it Happens

    There is a lot of conversation about spiritual transformation, but what is it really? This podcast explores what actually changes when people pursue a spiritual path and how that change manifests in the world. It has been described in many ways, but what actually changes is how we see ourselves, how we view the world, and how others see us.

    Mahdiah Esther Jacobs-Kahn, LCSW is a teacher of Universal Sufism in the lineage of Hazrat Inayat Khan. She is also a teacher of the Diamond Logos work founded by Faisal Muqaddam. She is a graduate of Hunter College and of the New York University Graduate School of Social work.

    Mahdiah has explored issues of growth and transformation for over fifty years. She is an experienced therapist who holds a certificate in sound healing from the California Institute of Integral Studies. Her current focus is on Ancestral Wounding and Healing and how epigenetics may offer us new tools for transformation.

    • 1 hr 3 min
    Podcast #13- Decolonizing into Oneness

    Podcast #13- Decolonizing into Oneness

    For Dr. Aude Chesnais, decolonization is more than restoring political and governmental independence to present and former colonies. We must decolonize across all areas of our lives, and to do this one first must confront the distinctions and differences our present predominantly white, western, patriarchal worldview imposes on ourselves — on how we perceive, think, relate, and act. True decolonization is rooted in a deep respect for both our uniqueness and our interconnectedness. In actuality, its foundation is spiritual. We must fearlessly deconstruct ourselves and how we have been colonized from independent beings with an easy connection to each other, nature and the cosmos into rigid belief systems emphasizing separateness and dominance, forcing allegiance to other than what is natural. This solid spiritual base affects our perceptions and informs our actions, but it confronts systems of power which resist its emergence in so many dimensions: personal, cultural, political, religious, gender, sexuality, racial, and more.

    Aude Chesnais, Ph.D. (Aziza Noor) has encountered various spiritual traditions before finding her family on the Sufi path since 2017. She also is a political ecologist and senior researcher for the Native Lands Advocacy Project, and has been working closely with native communities in the USA for the past 10 years on issues of land sovereignty and Traditional Ecological Knowledge, particularly in support of regenerative food-systems transitions. In her work, Aude has had to strongly reflect on her positionality as a white researcher working in indigenous settings. Although her spiritual path has led her on the quest to understand oneness, Aude's professional path and commitment to social justice constantly reminds her of the real social impacts of human distinctions on their lives. Reconciling these two coexisting realities is her lifetime quest.

    Dr. Chesnais received her MA in social and solidarity economics from Université de Haute-Alsace, France and her Ph.D. in sociology from Colorado State University, CO, USA.

    For more information about Dr. Chesnais's work or to make a donation:

    • 53 min

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Collaborative and authentic

What really stands out about this podcast is the invitation to participate and ask questions. It’s more about mutual inquiry and discovery than broadcasting “truth”. A real delight!

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