"the feet of Bhagavan are everywhere. So where can we gather except at his feet?
Time and space are no barriers to the gathering of hearts." Sri Ramana Maharshi

Celebrating the life of David LaChapelle

Celebrating the Life of David LaChapelle: Visionary teacher, see-er of souls, wisdom keeper and devoted follower to the great stillness. Friend to many. Dream coach, author, publisher and speaker. Chanter, painter, builder, philosopher and patriarch. His body let go. His gifts live on...

Submissions to this blog greatly appreciated:

To post your entry:
- email text and/or photos to ananda@jeffnet.org
(specify "for blog" and specify if anonymous or not) -or-
- comment in two places directly on blog: on left-hand panel or end of each post

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Ashland, Boulder and Princeton circles on July 21

From: Barbara Cecil (Ashland)
Date: July 22, 2010 7:37:45 AM MDT
To: Ananda Elise Foley
Subject: yesterday and today and tomorrow

Dearest Ananda, I wanted to write to you about our gathering last night at Carol and Paul's. You were so loved and cherished there. Please know the home home you have here. (Ashland)

We chanted, through open heart and eyes brimming over. Present were Carlos, Huly, Serena, Melanie, Carol Carlson, Carolyn, Paul, Carol, Steve, Rita, Norton, Suzanne, Michael, Carol H., Sandra Faulk, Jeralyn. Many more wrote in who were present in spirit. It was a needed, exquisite time of remembering specific moments in our personal and collective lives here, articulating the nature of the seeds planted in each of us, finding peace with unfinished segments of the story, seeing the truth of one another as the truth of David was pieced together through all the ways we have known him. We chanted Om Nama and We Are Coming Home. I would say the enduring river of spiritual connection with our own Selves and with David was strengthened.

Please know Ananda, that you are ever present as the weave of the past, present and future braid through your new life. Hugs, Barbara


From: Linda Weber (Boulder)
Date: July 22, 2010 9:20:12 AM MDT

Subject: Re: our circle

We had a celebration and remembrance circle for David on Tuesday night. It was sweet and beautiful with chants and a talking circle and of course meditation.

Yesterday I drove up Sugarloaf mountain just outside of Boulder in order to sit on the side of the hill at the same time that Silverton was having its ash ceremony. A few miles up the road I had to pull over and sit for there was a camel munching on brush near the other side of the road. A CAMEL. Not a llama, a camel. It was the kind with two humps. Never have I seen one in the area and I was stunned. A camel in the Rocky Mountains? How really strange and funny. The animal turned its head and looked me straight in the eye for a few timeless seconds. I sat and watched it for a little while as it went back to its eating, and eventually went on to my sit where I prayed and rattled. Last night, a friend of mine reminded me that David had quite a sense of humor. Yes he did, didn't he.

care and love,



From: "jan Birchfield" (Princeton)
Date: July 22, 2010 3:21:22 PM MDT
To: "'ANANDA Foley'"
Subject: excerpt for sending

Ananda, I just got your voice mail, and it would be fine to send out what I wrote. I spoke to someone from the circle, who suggested that I include the story of how the intention for that circle arose. If you have not yet sent something out, please send what I wrote, below. It was sweet to hear your voice! Much love, jan

This month, I had the honor of spending time with Amma. During a question and answer session with her in Boston, someone asked, “Amma, I have heard that when someone dies, if we continue to mourn them we can actually keep them tied to this plane of existence. Is this true?” Amma responded, “It is natural to feel sad when someone we love dies. However, if we do not release our sadness we actually do hold them close to this plane of existence. The greatest gift that we can give someone when they pass away is to pray that their soul moves to the highest level of consciousness possible. Releasing them from our grief is important for this reason.” I immediately thought of July 21st - the anniversary of David’s passing - and decided to devote our celebration of his life to the healing and upliftment of his soul, and the release of any residual attachment or unfinished business that keeps us tied to him.

I bought 12 white balloons, and filled the living room with them. Candles were lit and flowers were set out. I invited the circle to use this as an opportunity to offer prayer, that David's soul might transcend to the highest plane possible. We chanted alleluia with joy - great joy. We meditated together, and it was a soaring silent meditation. We then went outside to a fire in silence, saged, and prayed to the 7 directions. About 10 people turned and prayed to the directions with me, and so each time I turned, I spoke the direction. After praying to the north, I lifted up my arms and said, "Father Sky, hear our prayer." About 3 seconds went by, and in perfect timing we began to hear the rumble of thunder. There had been none up until this time. The thunder gently rose in pitch, gathering energy, lasted for about a minute, and subsided. It was absolutely stunning. We were all utterly transfixed. I had put out corn meal and tobacco, with an invitation that people offer to the fire a pinch of each, with a prayer either for David's transcendence, or to release any attachment to him or residual mourning. The invitation was to do this either in silence, or out loud. I then kept a steady drum beat, deep in meditation. People went up one at a time, and most of the prayers were in silence. There were 3 prayers that were not, but what was amazing was that these were all offered in another language - Arabic and Spanish. After this found its completion, I continued the drum beat, and said that prayer and healing coming from this earthly plane to the spirit world comes only through humans, and that it was therefore a great gift to offer a spirit out of the body, healing from this plane. I asked people to meditate on the drum, sending its medicine to David. The drum broke out from the rhythm that had been held, and went into a more ecstatic rhythm, with a few chants arising as well. This found its conclusion. We sat in silence for about 10-15 seconds, and all of a sudden it thundered, and began to rain - large cleansing rain drops. All elements were present - air, earth, water, fire - in unity. We began to laugh, and ran inside, and the dining room table had been set with tea and sweets, and so we moved right into informal celebration. People sat together in small groups and talked for about 20 minutes or so. Jeff asked if he could read something, and so we regathered for a short time, and I invited anyone that had something that they wanted to read or say to do so. Jeff read beautifully, and Cynthia read a story she had written. We all went back over the thunder moment, and there was great joy in the room. I asked Samar to end with an Arabic prayer. We were holding hands, and she said, "first I have to kiss Yvonne." She smacked Yvonne with a kiss, and told Yvonne to pass it on. The kiss went around the circle, followed by Samar's prayer, and then “om, loka samasta...”

It was such a celebration of David's life, and we were full of gratitude - grateful for the wordlessness of the evening, the opportunity to serve him, and the chance to enjoy the way in which he had tied all of us together through his love for us. Throughout the day I kept saying to myself, "we are celebrating David's rebirth day." Ah ho.

Much love, jan


  1. Thank you, dear Ananda, for sharing all the awe and beauty. And for holding the energy of peace.
    I held a ceremony in my heart where I keep both you and David. Always.
    Much love,

  2. Thanks Anandaji!!!!! great to see you all and taste the essence of the gathering! love Dani

  3. Thanks Ananda,
    We were there with you in spirit and prayer. Popped some prayer from Halemaumau in Volcanoes Park that day.
    Love all waysssssssssss
    Joel and Michelle

  4. With appreciation and love.........

  5. I thought of David that day with great appreciation. I am so glad he is on the other side helping us along....I miss and love him so much!

  6. Thank you Ananda for sharing the love that is palpable in the hearts of those who were physically present in Colorado.
    Blessings to you,