Thursday, November 24, 2011

Wednesday, November 23, 2011 - Transform Your Life - Discover Your Roots With URBAN ROOTS YOGA!

Concerned the amount of "UM"s I say on camera may inspire a drinking game, I've decided to chant a more uplifting, high-resonated "OM" instead.  According to Melanie,  a registered Yoga teacher and a graduate of The School of Yoga Therapy and Natural Medicine, many people avoid "OM" as a meditation device. 

"I don't want to do any chanting, or any weird sounds," they say.  One of Melanie's favourite students admits she loves Yoga, loves the benefits, yet proclaims, "There's no way I'm every going to OM!"  Luckily, OMing is purely optional.

"OM stimulates various parts of the body," Melanie explains, "While studying Yoga Therapy in India, the mantra 'OM' was used for people with heart trouble as the vibration helps to heal tissue and regulate blood pressure."

The founder of Urban Roots Yoga, Melanie believes Yoga can heal and transform your life.  CAMH (The Canadian Addiction and Mental Health Centre) for youths in the Concurrent Disorder Program and the Yellow Door Learning Centre (operated by Seeds of Hope Foundation) certainly agree.  Offering, at no charge, several 16-week Kundalini Yoga for Addiction Recovery programs to participants (in life transition) who visit the house for arts and wellness programs, Melanie's community support changes lives every day!

Toronto businesses such as Sunlife Insurance, Toronto Western Hospital, Flight Centre, Children's Aid, Wellness Inc., MCIS, Hansa Language Centre and Embody Fitness reflect the diversity in Yoga, and its benefits for both young and not-so young clientele.

Originating in India, Yoga (derived from the Sanskrit word 'Yuj' meaning connect or unite) dates back approximately 10,000 years.  "The script of the Vedas," Melanie states, "Eludes the idea of practicing a Yogic Spiritual Lifestyle.  Over 2,000 years ago it was written and described in full detail by Patanjali.

With over 194 aphorisms, Yoga Sutras (otherwise known as Yoga Darshana, the vision of Yoga) express the art and science of traditional Yoga meditation for Self-Realization.  Patanjali, credited with writing the Yoga Sutras, presented Yoga as Ashtanga Yoga, meaning 8 limbs.  "It's eight different aspects for leading a Yogic Lifestyle," explains Melanie, "Which leads to enlightenment."

"Yoga creates a sense of space in the mind and body, allowing you to find clarity." 

"Growing up in a small town, my thirst for spirituality and a connection wasn't being quenched," recalls Melanie.  "Always searching for a higher meaning, I had a deeper longing for something more."  Realizing a turn down the wrong path was a blessing in disguise, Melanie changed direction after a brief interlude in a little church courtyard.  "During this dark time, I had an epiphany.  I was to study and teach Yoga, passing these teachings on to others." 

Finding the truth within is a spiritual aspect of Yoga.  "Truth leads to trust; in the universe and within ourselves." remarks Melanie.  Knowing we're all connected, she believes Yoga will help achieve the "understanding of a higher power - a spirit, in the world around us; in other people." Whether religious or non-religious, Yoga benefits everyone.

Click here to view our interview with Melanie Woosley.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Wednesday, November 16, 2011 - Paranormal Activity

Unexplained manifestations unmeasurable by Science, aka paranormal activity continue to induce screaming, running, fear, panic, excitement, curiosity, and questions; lots of questions.  Do ghosts exist?  Why are they here?  How do I eliminate an unwanted presence?  Can investigations increase activity?

Returning guest Michelle Desrochers, (Canada's Most Haunted/Burlington Ghost Walks) believes ghosts "are definitely out there, judging by everything we've captured in regards to spirits; photographs, voice recordings..." Michelle continues, "We ask the questions, and they (the ghosts) are actually answering us.  This is known as intellegent hauntings."  Some spirits mimic the researchers.

"We have recordings that are residual energy.  They keep playing leftover sounds, over and over again; with no one answering back," concludes Michelle, "There's no rhyme or reason as to why they are there."

"There's a theory we tend to leave imprints of ourselves wherever we go," reflects Michelle, attributing this to our individual life source and the energy in everything around us.  "It definitely raises the question, are ghosts there or not, and why are they there?  It definitely warrants further research. That's what paranormal is all about - continuing to decipher things that can't be explained."

Are ghosts trapped here?  Do they have unfinished business?  Michelle suggests a number of reasons as to why spirits seem earthbound.  "It's all hypothetical.  I don't think we'll ever definitively have all the answers.  Spirits on average can be here because they are trapped.  Maybe they love the place so much they choose to stay there?  Perhaps they're afraid to cross over so they stay behind.  Those who have died suddenly, whether it be a car accident or murder, who don't realize they've passed on, may need to be told."  No doubt you've heard of cases where couples die within minutes, days, weeks or months of each other.  "Sometimes they're waiting for the one left behind."  Michelle attributes this to twin souls who most likely can't survive the trauma of losing one another to death.

Do you believe in ghosts?

Celebrating 10 years of paranormal research, Burlington Ghost Walks is hosted by Michelle Desrochers and Patrick Cross.  Patrick called into our show to give insights to paranormal activity observed during tours of Emma's Back Porch.  Before Burlington Ghost Walks, Patrick visited Emma's to investigate a number of reported hauntings.  Inviting CTV for media coverage, Patrick says, "We found a lot of activity.  After that, half the Burlington community jumped in with reports of ghost activity."  Supported by City of Burlington, Patrick gathered folklore from local residents and built a tour around it.  Investigations into Burlington and Halton Region's Most Haunted Places and it's Ghosts, Burlington Ghost Walks was established in 1999.   Michelle and Patrick are also the current Paranormal Representatives for Casa Loma.

Active in TV and Media, Michelle also organizes large paranormal events in CA and the US.

Amateur Ghost Researchers are advised to stay away from old, potentially unsafe buildings as many deaths have resulted from carelessness or faulty structures.  Joining a reputable ghost walk ensures the best results!  Bring along a camera, flashlight, comfortable walking shoes and any prefered ghost hunting equipment such as a dowsing rod, digital recorder, EMF detector and so forth.

"A dowsing rod, going back decades, is used to find water sources," explains Michelle.  "You can make them out of wire hangers or buy them. Whenever you hit water or spirit energy (cold spot) the wires will cross.  I'm a bit skeptical but many people swear by them."

"EMF Detectors will measure the electromagnetic field," says Michelle, prefering this method. "Whereas some detectors will blink and make all kinds of racket, these will speak."  Accrediting the EMF dectector and its 2000 word vocabulary to much of their success, Michelle shares their findings when collaborating with the Toronto Star.  In the stables of Casa Loma, the EMF detector spoke to Michelle.

EMF:        "No children.  Quarantine.  Up."
Michelle:   "Were the children sick?"
EMF:        "Yes." 

Further research concluded in 1919 there was an outbreak of influenza.  In quarantine, the children resided upstairs.  6000 Torontonians died.

Spirit Orbs captured by camera enthusists on the Ghost Walk are described as a "ball of energy".  Michelle clarifies how these globes can be misinterpreted. "Scientifically, so many things can portray an orb; dust, pollen, moisture, dander, dirt and particles.  Insects, sometimes captured in the camera lens and lighting (at the right angle) will appear as a glow of light."  Orbs can reflect patterns, faces and various colours, yet "most times they can easily be explained away.  In research you have to find that fine line, take a step back and view things logically.  It's a process of elimination, and what you have left with is what you work with."

It's evident Michelle enjoys researching paranormal activity, both intuitively and scientifically.  If there's a ghost of a chance there's something out there, Michelle will find it.  ;)

Click here to view our interview with Michelle Desrochers.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Wednesday, November 9, 2011 - You Can Dolittle or Do a Lot!

Frances the Talking MuleDay of the DolphinMister Ed, Alvin and the Chipmunks, The Shaggy Dog, Babe, Bolt...the list goes on.  For decades we've dreamt of communicating with animals.  In our animal-lovin' hearts, we all want to be Dr. DolittleElaine Turner, like many other animal whisperers, turns fantasy into reality. 

"Why is my cat psycho?" one viewer asked.  "Why is he such a finicky eater?"  "Why does my cat have an attitude?"  "Is my cat planning an escape?"  (and my personal favourite) "What do you think of people who paint their cat like Pikachu?"  Questions from viewers pertaining to dogs, cats, horses and other 4-legged companions reflect the need to know, what is my pet thinking?

Elaine, from Pawsitive-Connections explains we all have the ability to hear animals; are we listening?  With an open mind, anything is possible.

Sharing her own experience, Elaine recalls a time when a particular cat urinated and defacated everywhere.  Not pleased having their home utilized as a giant litter box, his owners contacted Elaine.  During a session,  Elaine discovered the cat's actions were premeditated.  An older cat within the home had a similar accident on the rug.   Knowing the aging cat would not appreciate him letting the cat out of the bag, ("She's going to be angry", he said) the urinating cat brought attention to the concealed ailment.  Working with the family, Elaine brought information to light, resulting in a veterinary visit.  Receiving much needed medical attention, the older cat thrived.  Mission accomplished, our compassionate hero reclaims his litter box.

"Animals not only look after us, they also look after each other," states Elaine, who points out it's always important to praise your animal for a job well done.

"A RUNAWAY rooster - its crowing at dawn heralds each new day.The rooster, which set up home in Styvechale after apparently straying from its owners, was lassoed after a month-long reign as cock of the walk. The squawking squatter had made its home in back gardens around Asthill Croft and Michaelmas Road. But residents were not so happy about their new neighbour and his raucous welcome to each new day. Now everyone can sleep easy, for the rooster has moved to a new home at an animal sanctuary," reported The Evening Telegraph on May 24, 2005.

"My parents contacted me to let me know they were moving him to a farm."  Communicating with the rooster, Elaine found "He was quite upset about having to move at first. Once he settled with the chickens in the coup he was quite happy."

Growing up, a tortoise held a special place in Elaine's heart.  "He always wandered off,"  Elaine remembers, "So much so, that we had to write our phone number on his shell."  When that method didn't bring results, Elaine relied on her intuition to find the runaway.  "I saw a vision of his location.  When we went to pick him up, that's where we found him."   

Although intuition is a valuable part of the animal communicative equation, Elaine also finds animals respond well to Reiki treatments.  The intent is to gently heal emotional, physical or behavioural illnesses or injuries.  Administering Reiki for three consecutive days, Elaine's healing energy extended her son's hampster's life.   Reiki can be performed in person, hands on or at a distance. Reiki is not limited by time, space or distance, therefore, Reiki energy can be received just as effectively the other side of the world as it can when the practitioner and animal are in the same room.  Animals decide how much Reiki they want to accept and for how long. They determine where they want the Reiki to help them, either physically, emotionally or both. Reiki is not intended as an alternative to veterinary care.

Accepting our invitation to appear on the show, 11-month old Jonah  (who recently joined our family) was the purrfect guest.  A loveable orange tabby, he transitioned well to his new environment.  One Sunday afternoon, Elaine asked Jonah's permission (very important) to engage in conversation.  We learnt Jonah takes his "job" seriously and prides himself on being a "warden", watching over our family.  Jonah teaches my 8 year old son (diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder) manners, anticipating Dorian's success in overcoming the ASD label by exceeding expectations.  Acting as a liason between my two sons, Jonah plays peacemaker, happy to be one of Three Muskateers (his words).  Pleased to hear Jonah loves his nickname Puss Puss, our family thanks Elaine for her wonderful insight.  We also thanked Jonah for sharing his thoughts and unconditional love.

Elaine is inspiring, so much so, I asked, "How may I communicate with Jonah?"  I've always felt a special bond with animals and pride myself on reading their expressions.  I rely on animal totems to receive messages.  Reminding me to keep "open", Elaine's encouragement gave me an incredible gift.  I highly recomend Elaine Turner and invite you to visit her website at  Since Jonah's session with Elaine, I've felt more in tune. 

One morning, sitting at my feet, Jonah suddenly jumped to attention.  I mentally asked, "What's up, Puss Puss?"  In my head, he responded, "Dorian's into the candy."  Although the Halloween candy was locked up, I trusted Jonah's concern.

Mommy (calling downstairs):  "Dorian, what are you up to?"
Dorian (from downstairs):  "Nothing."
Mommy (disbelieving):  "Really?  Jonah told me you're into the candy!"
Dorian (slinking up the stairs, peeking his head around the corner):  "Don't be mad, okay?"

The day prior, my parents dropped off some maple sugar treats.  Dorian found them.  I thanked Jonah for a job well done!

Click here to view our interview with Elaine Turner from Pawsitive Connections.

Dr. Dolittle - If I Could Talk To The Animals

If we could talk to the animals, just imagine it
Chatting to a chimp in chimpanzee
Imagine talking to a tiger, chatting to a cheetah
What a neat achievement that would be.

If we could talk to the animals, learn their languages
Maybe take an animal degree.
We'd study elephant and eagle, buffalo and beagle,
Alligator, guinea pig, and flea.
We would converse in polar bear and python,
And we could curse in fluent kangaroo.
If people asked us, can you speak in rhinoceros,

We'd say, 'Of courserous, can't you?'

If we could talk to the animals, learn their languages
Think of all the things we could discuss
If we could walk with the animals, talk with the animals,
Grunt and squeak and squawk with the animals,
And they could squeak and squawk and speak and talk to us.