Monthly Archives: July 2011

The "Master Teachers" of Unveiling (The "Best of the Best" – in the World!)

The Master Teachers of Unveiling: The Inner Journey

Beginning today, I’m introducing – and thanking – the “personae dramatis” of Unveiling: The Inner Journey; the “cast of characters” who’ve made it all possible.

Each person whom I’ll acknowledge – in today’s and several forthcoming posts – actually is mentioned in the “Acknowledgements” of Unveiling. So continuing with the “personae dramatis” analogy; each of these persons will be “cast” (Master Teachers, Wise Men and Wise Women, Heroes, Heroines, and Healers, and many others), or they will be the “support team” – the production crew, the people who helped make it all happen. So just as you read a stream of rolling credits at the end of a movie, we’ll have “rolling credits” for Unveiling, starting today.

unveiling inner journey

The two Master Teachers whom I reference the most throughout Unveiling are Anahid Sofian and Elena Lentini, both based in New York City.

And now, since one of the great joys and privileges of running my own blog (and company) is that I can plug those whom I believe deserve extra-special attention: Anahid is hosting her 5-day intensive in New York City later this August, from Weds., August 17 – Sunday, August 21st.

A brief run-down of the topics that she’ll teach (with two special guest teachers) is:

  • Zill drills & techniques,
  • Oriental “port de bras” (positioning of arms; VERY important and too few teachers give a structured foundation in this; Anahid is one of the very best),
  • Classical Arabic dance (Awalim),
  • Drum solo strategies,
  • The “Art of the Veil” (an Anahid-specialty; I love how she introduces and builds on various “veil patterns”,
  • Turkish cabaret karshilama, and
  • Classical & contemporary Persian ballet (taught by Special Guest teacher Sharzad Khorsandi).

Guest teachers will include Eva Cernik (whom I adore, and who is also mentioned in Unveiling), and Sharzad Khorsandi (Persian style) – I think she’s teaching on Saturday(?).

There will be a gala performance event Friday evening, August 19th, at the Lafayette Grill in downtown Manhattan.

The price for the entire 5-day intensive is only $375, and daily rates (space permitting) are available.

For more information on Anahid’s workshop, go to the Anahid’s website or contact her via email; sofiana (at) tiac (dot) net.

"Unveiling" is Finally Here!

Unveiling: The Inner Journey Released July 19, 2011

Dear Ones –

Fabulous, fantastic good news!

Unveiling: The Inner Journey is finally here. And you can get order your copy today through any of three different e-stores:

  • For a signed, dated, and early-numbered copy: Order through Cleo’s Closet,
  • For fast delivery directly from the “print shop”: Order through CreateSpace,
  • For easiest ordering – with a vendor whom you know and trust: Order through Amazon, by going to the image below.

unveiling inner journey

The Risks in Practicing "Unveiling" (And Yes, They’re Real)

I had coffee this morning with a young colleague; a woman who is truly brilliant; an “out-of-the-box” genius-level thinker, and who is also the mother of a very active son. I showed her the proof copy of Unveiling.

“Weren’t you scared to write this?” she asked. “After all, you’re saying everything in this book.”

“Yes,” I told her. I was scared, and I still am. I wrote and rewrote, figuring that I was going to be ostracized by the scientific community forever. “The only solution,” I told her, “was that I had to go big and bold. I couldn’t hold back.”

I came home, and after a bit, went down to the “Diva Den” to watch a movie and stretch out. It turns out that Agora, the story of Hypatia of Alexandria, was on. I nearly wept as I watched it, already knowing Hypatia’s story.

She was a brilliant mathematician and astronomer. And she was murdered by a mob of Christian monks, who stripped her naked, skinned her alive with potshards, dragged her body through the streets, and finally burned her. (Accounts vary as to whether or not she was burned alive.)

Hypatia was brutally murdered not just because she was an intellectual leader and an abstract philosopher, and not just because she didn’t convert to Christianity, but because she was a woman.

Yes, it is very scary for all of us women to reclaim our inherent wholeness, and with this, our intrinsic power.

From Unveiling: The Inner Journey, Chapter 9, “A Real Woman’s Path – Really Does Exist” (p. 128):

It is not that we expect to be burned at the stake for taking time for our inner selves. However, history is replete with examples of women who have been burned at the stake, for crimes ranging from knowing their own sexuality, to spending time with animals, to having healing wisdom and knowledge of herbs.

The famous Venetian “honored courtesan” Veronica Franco was persecuted by the Inquisition. Although she survived, the experience broke her spirit (and ruined her financially), and she left Venetian society. She died in poverty some ten years later.

The Miletan philosopher Aspasia was renowned for her intellectual leadership as well. She influenced Socrates and other leading thinkers of her time. She was put on trial for “impiety.”

One crucial thesis of Unveiling is that Oriental dance is a women’s body/mind/psyche/energy integration pathway. And since our dance form is intrinsically sensual, we are denigrated for practicing it. If we were doing karate, we’d be respected. That is, if we did a martial art, we would get respect; if we do a “Venusian art,” we are trivialized.

And yes, I’m coming out with a book that puts all of who I am on the line. My scientific identity and my “dance” persona; my research into esoteric practices and my latest “discoveries.” All in one big (544, but easy-to-read) volume.

And yes, I’m scared.

Your thoughts? Your comments?

Unveiling – Chapter 17: "We’re Worth the Effort"

“We’re Worth the Effort” – Lessons from Unveiling

A lot of Unveiling is about deconstructing – and re-constructing – our lives. The two go hand in hand. For example, when we clean out our closets, or even a drawer, we “de-construct” a situation of messiness or chaos, or we move out those things that no longer fit. Then, we’re open to bringing in something new; something that suits who we are just a little bit more. We can’t do one without the other.

Author’s Sidenote: There are some who try. One gentleman was very concerned about keeping the “what he had” in his company, even while he moved out to conquer new ground. He didn’t want to let go of any aspect of his personality, or his creation. Not a healthy attitude, and not (really) a healthy person. You’ll read about him in the Introduction to Unveiling; he’s “Mr. Jack.” (He’s “30-second Jack,” to be specific. And yes, the reference means exactly what you think it does. Just read the Intro.)

Back to the Main Topic: The biggest practice that we can undertake, as we start to develop ourselve from within, is to regard ourselves as being sacred and holy. (See Chapter 17: “We’re Worth the Effort.”) And this literally does mean “sacred” – in the sense of being “set apart.” (Go look up the etymology of “sacred” – it refers to the sacrum – which is the central element of all of our dance techniques – and also is the generative word for other words – such as sacrifice.)

We also become “holy”; whole-unto-ourselves.

This is a powerful root life-practice.

And we implement it in very simple, straightforward practical terms.

Right now, it is Friday afternoon, almost 4PM. I’ve been cleaning house all day; all the myriad little chores in closing out the work-week, and getting ready for the Sabbath. I try to keep Saturday as a “Sabbath,” not so much out of a religious orientation, but because I’ve learned the necessity of regular, scheduled down-time. And Saturday has become my day.

And to approach our Sabbaths with a calm, clear mind – a peaceful state of being – it helps if our surroundings are clean and clear. So I’ve spent the morning, with two housemates, deep-cleaning and “fluffing” the downstairs dining areas. Now, I’m taking a quick break from doing laundry, cleaning out the sewing/design area, and completing lots of little pre-Sabbath chores. Even down to making a pot of chili, so that there’s good food to eat and I don’t have to worry about finding something when I’m hungry.

All these “little things” mount up.

Bit by bit, I’m circling around and nibbling the edges of the “paperwork giant” that sits on the table near my desk; the overwhelming, intimidating pile of “get-back-to’s.” Even that is getting diminished.

All of these “little steps” are a part of creating my life, just as you create your own life.

And the way in which we best create our lives is to treat ourselves as something very special; as the beautiful, glowing jewel in the heart of the lotus. We imagine everything in and about our lives as a gorgeous Faberge egg, and we are the central jewel, nestled within, and shown off in all our gorgeous splendor!

And even though I’ve written about this (See Chapter 17 in Unveiling), and am now even blogging and telling others about this (see this morning’s FB post), I still need to apply what I’ve learned and written to myself. Hence today’s little “mini-journey,” being carried out as a house-cleaning.

Think simple, practical, and specific. Respond to what bothers you the most; a pile of unanswered letters, a dresser top that needs to be cleaned and re-arranged, extra clothes that need to be taken out of the closet and dropped off at Goodwill. Respond to your inner nudgings, and note what you’re doing in your journal or day-planner.

A few months from now, a year from now, you’ll look back – especially if you keep your journal to prod your memory – and marvel at how much cleaner, lighter, and overall juicier your life has become – and how the people, things, and events in your life are working so beautifully well for you!

And if you haven’t ordered your copy of Unveiling yet, go to, and order your copy with the fastest delivery method possible. Join me in going through it. I have a “Seasonal Study Guide” posted, and am using it myself; go to We’re in the middle of Chapter 18 (“The Ritual – And Why We Need It”) and Chapter 19 (“A Sacred Time, A Sacred Space”). Read along with me, and comment on this blog!

Unveiling "Unveiling" – It’s Finally Here!

It’s not yet 5AM. But the news is so good that I can’t wait to share it with you.

Yesterday, for the first time (in the history of the universe!), Unveiling: The Inner Journey became available on the web. You can now order it directly from CreateSpace, the production house within Amazon. To do this, go directly to the Unveiling page in the CreateSpace e-store. This is a regular e-store; you can place your order, select your timeframe for delivery (slow = cheap, fast = expensive), and have your own Unveiling as soon as you desire!

And if you have PRE-ORDERED, please bear with me – I’ve ordered my copies to send to you (some will be sent through Cleo’s Closet), and you’ll get them as soon as we can get them into the mail.

But truly and finally, you now have options. You can be one of the first to get your hands on the book that will, ultimately, sweep the world.

Consider how we woman have evolved in our thinking:

  • Relationships: Early 1990’s – 2000’s – We all read John Grey’s Men Are from Mars, Women Are from Venus. (This book sold over 13M copies, worldwide). We were focused on men, and our relationships with them. In addition to Men are from Mars, we read books like Feldhahn’s (2004) For Women Only: What You Need to Know About the Inner Lives of Men.
  • Empowerment: Mid-1990’s – Late 2000’s – We read Steve Covey’s Seven Habits (1989, over 15M copies sold), and stayed with the “how to live our lives successfully” theme through Rhonda Byrne’s The Secret (2006, several M copies sold).
  • Wisdom: 2010’s onward – We’ve already read Dr. Christiane Northrup’s Women’s Bodies, Women’s Wisdom, Suzanne Somers’ books (think The Sexy Years), and even The Female Brain, by Dr. Louann Brizendine. Each of these has sold over 1M copies, and have been working their way steadily higher. By now, we understand men (and relationships). We have become “empowered”; we are living our lives “successfully” and we’ve even mastered the “Secrets.”

What we’re reaching for now is a new level of “wisdom.” We know about our bodies. We know how our hormones change, and even how our lives change. We understand that the transition point, beginning sometime in our mid-to-late 40’s, is not just about menopause and the children leaving home. Instead, it is a time of growing, deepening, and ripening. And, it is a time for accessing a potent new form of energy, our “vital energy” or ch’i. (We may no longer have the bouncy sexiness of youth, but we can and do access something very new and different!)

What we want, what we need in our lives right now, is a sense of inner wisdom and direction. A means for “setting a course” for the next stage of our life-journey.

When we were younger, it was easier to “set course.” We “got our degree.” We married (or not), had children (or not), and followed a fairly typical, well-known path of career and family.

But as a friend said to me, “It’s not ‘What’s next?,’ but rather: ‘What now?’”

Really, What NOW?

Is there a roadmap? Is there guidance? Is there a “path to follow” once we start having enough time in our lives to actually do some inner digging and “follow” something?

It turns out that a “roadmap for wisdom” really exists! And for all that I’m a scientist and inventor (my “day” trade; I have four patents to my credit), I didn’t “invent” this.

In fact, I didn’t even “discover” it.

If anything, I was led to rediscovering the secrets.

And yes, there really ARE secrets.

What I learned, in the course of researching, writing, and (the “big” secrets came late!) even rewriting Unveiling – was that there really was (and still is, I’ve just unearthed it) an ancient pathway for self-knowledge.

My job has simply been to find the pieces and re-assemble them.

It’s been a lot like finding an ancient artifact, or a magnificent statue, that had been broken into bits. My job was discovery: find pieces, see how they fit together.

A segue: The lifetime of work that I’ve had up until now – as a scientist, a researcher and an inventor, and even my personal studies in a wide range of “esoteric” disciplines (from chemistry to alchemy, from T’ai Chi to yoga to Oriental dance; the list goes on), have all formed the “substrate” that let me do this. If I hadn’t spent years of study, in such a wide range of areas, I wouldn’t have recognized the “pieces” when I started to pick them up. It would be like walking through an area with lots of fossils. Only a trained eye can discern that a piece of rock is a fossil, not just a hunk of stone. And only a specially-trained paleontologist would know that she (or he) was looking at a brand new fossil, versus the many expected ones in an area.

Similarly, by the time that I was wrapping up Unveiling, I had enough scientific background (and background in other areas) to know that when I found a new clue, I was on to something interesting. Something very unexpected, and a whole new set of insights. We can say that the initial insights came as hunches, or perhaps a form of “guidance.” However they came about, they took a lot of work to follow up; to trace sources and verify. Writing this book was a lot like doing field archeology – albeit in written form!

This is why Unveiling took fourteen years, just to produce a rough draft. And then two years of nearly full-time work, just to go from raw draft to finished manuscript. (Two years, including some major “re-discoveries.” The extra research, the writing, the “making sense of it all” and putting it into Unveiling; all this took time.)

So, dear one, Unveiling is not about “belly dance.” Rather, it is about who we are as women; our becoming; our emerging into a very new stage of our lives.

And after fourteen years of writing, two more of further research, re-writing, and editing, and after four major proofing rounds, and two rounds of cover art – it’s finally here.

You can order your copy today, and be reading it by this weekend. Go to the Unveiling page in the CreateSpace e-store. And settle in for the best summer read that you’ve ever had, ever!

Transitioning from "Writing" to "Communicating"

For Introverted Authors – The Transition from Writing to Connecting with People – In Person, and on the Web

To all my friends, business colleague, and even random strangers with whom I strike up conversations – I encourage everyone who has a “knowledge resource” to write, publish, and somehow make their “knowledge resource” available as a “product.” There are many reasons for this, and I’ve discussed them in previous blogposts. (You may want to see some of my postings from both this blog and my other, “scientific/technical/business” world.)

In short, whether you write a book, produce a DVD, or offer any kind of unique knowledge – the one where YOU are the expert – I encourage you (and all others “like” you) – to make a stand-alone product.

With a “product” standing behind you, you become more recognized as an “expert.” Also, your “product” becomes a “personal surrogate.” It can train many others on your behalf; this means that you can reach many people, much more effectively over time. People all over the world – those who could never make it to your regular classes, private coaching sessions, or even your occasional workshops, can order your product, or download your DVD, and connect directly with you.

You reach more people. And you shorten their learning curve.

These are two huge benefits – for them and for you.

However, there is a huge upfront cost involved. In order to produce a product, of any sort, you have to pull back from connecting with people and doing your “regular business,” and focus on product creation. You can get a lot of this done at night, on weekends, during vacations, and during various other “slow times” in your life.

But there comes a time, when in order to guarantee – to yourself more than anyone else – you must pull back from your “regular life” and focus exclusively on product creation. This can be a short timeframe – a few weeks, perhaps. Or it can be months. Or, it can take years.

A “big product” takes a long time for completion.

It’s like growing a garden. If you grow a simple “salad garden,” you’ll have a bumper crop of lettuce, radishes, and baby carrots within 60 days. And it’s easy; plant, water, harvest. But healthy though salads are, we do not live on salads alone!

We need heartier fare as well. Even from a farmer’s garden, we need things like fruits and nuts.

And fruits and nuts grow on trees.

Trees take a much longer time to grow than lettuces. The time-to-produce (or “product development time”) is measured in years, not months or weekends.

So to build a more powerful, more effective product, takes comparably more time.

All logical so far, and no surprise to any of you.

But I’m working my way up to the crucial, main point.

Some of us have the tenacity, the focus, and pure, sheer endurance and will-to-succeed that it takes to produce a major product, such as a book.

But during this time of “product creation,” something happens. We become – necessarily, and through an absolute requirement of focusing on getting the product done – very introverted.

We do what we have to do to succeed, and this means pulling back from many social interactions.

The result is that we move into a prolonged introverted state; a state-of-mind that is characterized by intense focus on a single objective. Think of it as becoming “laser-like.”

Very, very effective for getting a book written.

And absolutely horrible for getting out, connecting with people, marketing, schmoozing, networking, staying active on Facebook and other social media — and all the other things associated with promoting (whether you’re promoting yourself, or your book).

So — this is exactly the situation in which I’m finding myself right now.

And a main, MAJOR reason that I write this blog is NOT JUST to share the actual “Unveiling message,” but to share with you what it is like to actual DO the process. Not just write a book, but now, to transition from writing to marketing.

And this is a “sea change.” It’s HUGE.

It’s going from introversion to extroversion.

It’s going from tight, laser-like, mono-manaical focus to extremely broad spectrum.

But what it is NOT (I’m learning this right now) is going from long-range rifle to “buckshot.” Going from product-completion to marketing is NOT going into a “scattershot” mode.

Instead, the NEW approach has to yield maximal results for your time.

There are secrets to this, and I’m devoting much of my time to learning, and implementing them.

And I’ll share them with you, from time to time.

And of course, I’ll continue to reveal – and discuss with you online – the “secrets of Unveiling”!

To your health, wealth, happiness, and personal fulfillment in every way –
my very best wishes —

yours – Alay’nya