Meditation Helps Special Needs Students Control Behavior

The Benjamin Franklin Freshman Academy in Levittown, Pa. is taking part in a district program this summer to help 25 students – first grade through eighth – with special needs conditions such as autism and attention-deficit disorders (ADD), according to a report by

Students with these conditions often have difficulty reading the social cues of language, voice and behavior in others, and may react in inappropriate ways, as well as experience anxiety at a higher level, according to the report.

Occupational therapist Charles E. Gallagher, who studied Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and trained at the Mindfulness Institute at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital, is teaching the children meditation techniques and deep breathing exercises to help them cope, according to the report.

“They feel out of control,” JoAnn Allison, the district’s supervisor of special education said in the report. She explained the strategies being taught help the children feel in control of both themselves and their surroundings.

Meditation can help children control anxiety enough to reduce medications they are taking, Christina DiNicola, a pediatrician with the Myrna Brind Center of Integrative Medicine at Jefferson told, explaining that early studies show “promising results” in children with ADD who practice yoga and biofeedback to relax.

New Show “A Gifted Man” Coming to CBS This Fall

Imagine this: a successful surgeon reconnects with his ex-wife right before her sudden death … only to begin communicating with her spirit as she tries to teach him life lessons from beyond the grave.

This is the premise of a new CBS series called “A Gifted Man,” premiering in the fall and set to run on Friday evenings.
Two-time Tony award nominee Patrick Wilson, who will play the surgeon named Michael Holt; Tony nominee Pablo Schreiber; and two-time Tony winner Jennifer Ehle, who plays the ex-wife, have been cast in the new series, according to

Check out the video below to see a sneak peek of what is coming soon!

Yoga Enthusiasts Take Over Times Square

Organized by the Times Square Alliance, the annual yoga event “Mind over Madness,” took place yesterday in Times Square on Broadway and 48th Street in Manhattan — historically called ‘the crossroads of the world’ — to celebrate the first day of summer, and the longest day of the year.

Sponsored by Lucy Activewear, the first 1,000 attendees received a free yoga mat and gift bag, and the event offered three classes with local New York yoga instructors, as well as special guest speakers, including Nicole Nichols from Yoga Studies; Patrick Lynch from Bikram Yoga NYC; and Douglass Stewart from YogaWorks.

“We’re trying to create a little ocean or perhaps just a little lake or just a drop of serenity in the midst of all this madness,” Tim Tompkins of The Times Square Alliance said in a report by The Telegraph. “It’s an attempt, on the longest day of the year, when the sun is shining brightest, to tap into that energy and have it help carry us through the rest of the year.”

Watch the video below to see the amazing event in action!


World Peace in Washington

In July, His Holiness the Fourteenth Dalai Lama will confer the Kalachakra for World Peace ritual in Washington, D.C., at the Verizon Center — all to inspire harmonious relationships and abiding peace in the hearts of people throughout the world. “

The initiation to the Kalachakra is one of the most important [practices for world peace] … because it takes everything into account: the body and the human mind, and the whole external aspect — cosmic and astrological,” the Dalai Lama said. “We firmly believe in its power to reduce conflict, and we believe it is capable of creating … peace of spirit and therefore peace in the world.”

While the Kalachakra Tantra teachings date back more than 2,500 years ago to the time of the historical Buddha Shakyamuni, this will be the 31st time the Dalai Lama has given the empowerments since initiating the Kalachakra gatherings in 1954.

The 11-day event launches July 6, 2011 — the 76th birthday of the Dalai Lama — and he along with monks and senior lamas will conduct rituals to prepare and consecrate the venue during the first seven days. These include chanting of prayers and the creation of the colorful Kalachakra sand mandala.

Additionally, there will be three days of teachings by the Dalai Lama where he will present the foundations of Buddhist thought from July 9 – 11. On July 16, the final day, the Kalachakra for World Peace 2011 will close with a ceremony offering prayers for the long life of the Dalai Lama and a long-life blessing will be given to all in attendance.

For more information or to purchase a ticket, visit

Move Over Groupon – is Here! is a recently launched social coupon platform featuring coaching, metaphysics and healing services, as well as a variety of other personal development and spirituality based offers — and its FREE to subscribers!

“SpiritSavings fulfills a great need in this industry by connecting customers and merchants with a wide variety of related goods and services,” said creator Amy Scott Grant.

Examples of offers found at the site include life coaching; spiritual healing; energy work; metaphysical books and supplies; personal development courses and seminars; audio programs; meditation audios; and new age resources.

Unlike most daily deal sites, is not divided by geographic location – it connects worldwide subscribers with participating spiritual vendors and life coaches all across the globe, offering them the opportunity to test and discover new providers that fit their interests, according to the creators.

The platform leverages the power of social media, e-mail and group buying power, giving merchants the opportunity to connect with their target audience in a comfortable, low-risk environment.

Unlike Groupon, SpiritSavings does not charge any up-front “initiation” fees to participating merchants, and the service is completely free of charge for subscribers, the company said. Additionally, in keeping with the site’s spiritual theme, each day’s deal listing also includes an inspiring quote of the day.

If you are looking for a deal, or want to offer your product or service to a targeted audience, check them out!

Actor Derek Luke Puts “Spirit First” in Life

Derek Luke recently joined the cast of “Hawthorne” on TNT, starring Jada Pinkett Smith (who plays Christina Hawthorne). His character is a doctor from Chicago going through a divorce, and the new love interest of Hawthorne’s daughter.

When interviewed by “Shadow and Act,” a blog on, Luke discussed his personal views on spirituality, explaining: “It allows me to have peace no matter what kind of storm is happening … I believe when you find a plan and purpose that God has for your life, there’s not anything man can do to you …”

He also explained in the interview that his character on the show, Miles, is going through a divorce and facing “tough decisions,” after his move from Chicago to Richmond, Va.

“It’s a right career move but he’s finding out if it’s correct for his family. He’s presented with some escape routes and he has to decide whether or not those escape routes are appropriate to whom he is as a person,” he said in the article. “That’s what I love about having spirit first … when you put spirit first, you have a reason for why you do heart.”