Monthly Archives: January 2013

3rd Eye Rising

Review originally written and published with The Witches’ Hour eZine in the debut issue from 2011.

3rd Eye Rising3rd Eye Rising: A Journey Through Ascending Realms – Paradiso & Rasamayi of 5th Element Music – A review by Philipp Kessler of Pagan-Musings Podcast Channel

As a radio and podcast host I have gotten the pleasure of listening to many different musicians over the years. Rarely have I been disappointed; rarely have I been blown away. 3rd Eye Rising is one CD that blew me away.

After it arrived in my hot little hands and I popped it into the CD player I was just mesmerized by the beautiful combination of instruments and sounds that I heard coming out of my speakers. I had not been exposed to Paradiso’s earlier works until after listening to 3rd Eye Rising. I had no expectations other than what I read in the cover letter that was included with the CD. Descriptions of ethereal music using crystal singing bowls, didjeridoo and gongs. Sounds pretty typical for new age music, right?

WRONG! In this wonderful selection of music by Paradiso and his beloved Rasamayi you will find an elegant take on the typical new age musical format. Simply put, you will be transported into a bright, light, and healing place within yourself.

3rd Eye Rising consists of eleven tracks of pure healing music. Each track takes you deeper into a place of light and peace. Starting with their piece Bliss and moving straight through the entire CD to Purpose, 3rd Eye Rising will definitely take you on a journey that will calm the mind, sooth the nerves, and bring about change in your daily routine.

Each track is designed to heal and take you one step closer to oneness with yourself, your surroundings and the universe. Bliss (track 1) starts you out with an ethereal sound that reminds me of what I hear in my head when I think of traveling through space and time. Gratitude (2) will help you to realise everything in your life and to be thankful for it; featuring Rasamayi’s beautiful vocals and Paradiso’s didjeridoo. Invocation (3), which could have very easily begun this CD’s journey, sets the tone for the rest of the experience and creates a sacred space where ever you are listening to the music. Abundance (4) adds to the thankfulness of Gratitude by showing you more of what you already have and helping you to realise the love of everyone in your life. Transformation (5) does just that, it transforms your consciousness into something that is more ready and able to embrace the healing sounds of this collection and opens you up to share more of yourself with those you love. Which leads wonderfully into Love (6). Guidance (7) can be used for meditation by itself. Guiding you on an inner journey or quest to learn more about yourself. Flow (8) simply flows over you and helps you to return to yourself after your meditation and sets the mood for reflection. Wisdom (9) will allow you to sit back, think, and understand what it is that you have learned on this journey. Whether you have been holding yourself, or someone else, back from what you need to do to be happy and healthy in this life, you will have a better understanding – more wisdom – in life. Power (10) reminds you that you have the power within yourself to heal. To heal yourself and others, if you will only take the time to learn and grow. Finishing the CD is Purpose (11), giving you a sense of purpose – if you will pardon the obvious statement.

If you take the whole CD as a meditation journey, you can broaden your horizons and bring a level of healing into your life. This same CD can also be used for past life meditation, lending a healing light to the hurt and pain of the past, as well as revealing better knowledge of the lessons learned in those past lives.

Enough praises for the CD itself. On to the artists!

Paradiso & RasamayiI, and my cohost on Pagan-Musings Podcast, had the pleasure and privilege of interviewing this wonderful musical duo on June 4th (2011). Just the sound of their voices brought about a dramatic shift in my consciousness and enabled me to complete the interview without going off on tangents and yawning too much. (I work over nights, and the podcast was at 2pm Central.) Shortly after the show, they left for the first leg of their summer tour. They have performed in Ogden, UT, Denver, CO for INATS (International New Age Trade Show) and elsewhere this summer.

From 5th Element Music’s website (http://5thelementmusic.com): Paradiso
“Virtuoso didjeridoo artist, producer and composer, Paradiso Turturici, is the founder and owner of the 5th Element Music publishing company and record label. Paradiso’s music has been featured in movie soundtracks, nominated for multiple “best of” categories by the prestigious New Age Reporter, and consistently ranks high on satellite and radio charts. He has released several albums, including three solo CDs — Healing Vibes, Shaman’s Trance, and Middle Path — which feature the didjeridoo accompanied by keyboards, percussion, vocals, the theremin, and other exotic instruments.

Rasamayi“Acclaimed sound healer Rasamayi, has been trained in the healing art of sound in the Vedic, Shamanic and Himalayan traditions and is further informed by past-life memories of the practice. She has performed with renowned artists including Steven Halpern and Kai Eckhardt and for prestigious institutions nationwide. Her clients have reported transformative visions of Divine Mother and current and past-life healing.”

Paradiso and Rasamyai take their music further than most other new age musicians I have had the pleasure of listening to. They help their audience to heal, whether they are listening live or on a CD. Each peace of music from 3rd Eye Rising will take you a step closer to healing, balance, harmony in your life. Both combine their love you music and performance with their love for the people around them, incorporating subtle musical shifts with energy flows that wrap around you and go through you.

“I believe music can heal the mind, body and spirit and liberate us. My vision is to inspire all of us to rediscover oneness with each other, our environment, and all of creation through music”, says Paradiso.

Listen to the CD in whatever manner pleases you most. I have had it playing in the background while writing this review for you. I hope that the peace and love that Paradiso and Rasamayi have put into their music has come through in my words here. Remember to visit their website at http://5thelementmusic.com and check out their musical offerings. Check out their interview with KaliSara and myself on Pagan-Musings Podcast Channel at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/pagan-musings/2011/06/04/paradiso-rasamayi–3rd-eye-rising.

Updated since original publication: I had the pleasure of experiencing one of Paradiso and Rasamayi’s sounding healing sessions in August 2012 in Omaha, NE. It was a very enjoyable experience. I attended with an older lady friend of mine. We were at a yoga studio and were sitting on pillows on the floor. My friend, who has bad knees, was able to get up from the floor without help and without pain.

Paradiso and Rasamayi have recently released their newest project, Attuning to Oneness. I will be reviewing that CD in an upcoming article on this site.

 

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Second Son

Second Son: Transitioning Toward My Destiny, Love and Life by Ryan Sallans
I’ve had the pleasure of meeting Ryan Sallans a couple of times over the last year or so. He is a soft-spoken, charming and compassionate man. My first meeting with him was in February 2012. He was a featured guest on Lavender Hill, a GLBTQA news and talk program I co-host on KZUM in Lincoln, NE. He was on as part of our Transgender Issues series. This was before his book had come out – we hope to have him on again now that the book has been out for almost a year.

Second Son is an autobiography, no way around that. It is the story of Ryan Sallans’ life from birth to nearly the present day. It is the story of his struggles and triumphs, how his family came to understand him and how he found his place in this world. Ryan tells his story honestly and without holding back.

When I picked up Ryan’s book I knew I would be in for an emotional roller coaster ride. So I took my time reading and always made sure I had a box of tissue nearby. Not say that the book is a tear jerker. It is real. It is heart warming in places, heart breaking in others.

Ryan opens himself up to the reader and lays it all out for them. His confusion over his sexuality as a child and teenager. His battle with an eating disorder. His obsession with his body’s appearance. His struggles as a lesbian. His heartbreaking relationship issues while transitioning into who he really is. All the ups and downs that come into a person’s life are magnified when you read them coming from the perspective of a person who is living in the wrong body.

His frankness about his transition is especially refreshing. Going through all the stages of transition. You have to read the book to understand it all. I simply cannot put it into words, words that are not mine. This is a must read for anyone who is transitioning, has transitioned, works with or in the transgender community, and for anyone who wants a better understanding of transgender issues.

I am not transgender. But I am a gay man. I have had some of those same battles, but not all of them. Reading Ryan’s words made me realize just how convoluted things can be for anyone who is transitioning. I feel proud to have met Ryan and hope to continue to build a friendship with him.

Listen to the entire Lavender Hill Transgender Issues series from February 2012

Part One, Part Two, Part Three, Part Four

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What I Do

Among many other things that I occupy my time with, I read and listen to music. A lot. My book library is larger than some small public libraries and my music collection has exploded in the last four years.  Monthly I receive new books and music from the authors and musicians. I am honored and thankful that they want to send me their works. That is why I have decided to start this blog.

There are hundreds, even thousands, of blogs out there that review either books or music. Some of them even combine those two topics into one blog. I’ve even written some of those blogs, or submitted articles to their owners. So what makes this one different? I take a different look at what I read and listen to than many of the amateur reviwers in the interwebs. I try to look at the works from the perspective of the potential audience. I’m not a professional, I don’t get paid for any of this.

I often receive the music or books because of my work in radio and internet broadcasting. Musicians and their promoters send me CDs or digital downloads. Authors and publishers send me hard copy or ebooks. I sometimes solicit the works, but they are usually sent to me without any effort on that end. I put the real effort in when I read or listen to the work.

My book tastes vary through almost all genres, as you will see by reading the reviews you will find here. My music taste is a bit more specific, though I am open to almost anything. As my radio and internet broadcasts are focused on Paganism and LBGTQ+ issues you will find that most of the music I review here will be somehow connected to those areas. For the most part, anything goes.

Check out the About page on this blog for details about the broadcasting and other projects I am involved in. For now, it is time to dive into a good book while listening to some excellent tunes!

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