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gif of tree and sky representing growth and fear

Making Growth-Choices instead of Fear Choices. Article number 3 in Self Transcendence Behavior Series based on the work of Abraham Maslow


We hope that all the choices we make move us toward personal growth and away from fear. However, the Law of Attraction states that Like Attracts Like. It is our current energy state that creates the energy we experience in the future. But often when we make a choice we tell ourselves is for our own growth while being in a state of fear. And what we attract is just what we feared.

How do we tell when a choice is coming from Growth of Fear?

Growth Choices

Growth Choices give us a “tingle” of excitement, a feeling of “this is right”! Often growth choices are not “planned out”. They are spontaneous and follow our deepest feelings. After we’ve made a growth choice there may be a moment of excited doubt, when we laugh at ourselves and our actions. We find ourselves saying “OK, I did this. Now what do I do?” and laughing!

Years ago I was living in Augusta, GA. I had just finished my Doctoral Degree at University of Georgia. My dissertations was titled “Development and Learning for Transformation”. I thought I was going to continue working as a faculty member at Medical College of Georgia. Then a growth decision occurred. I “felt” that to move on I needed to resign my faculty position, which I did. A couple of weeks later, I was driving down Bobby Jones Expressway and noticed a sign in the window of a store. I pulled in and the owner was present. I look around at the store, looked at the owner, and said “I’ll take it” and handed her a check. Then I drove home with a wry smile on my face, wondering what I had just done. In fact, it turns out, I had just opened the first metaphysical store in Augusta, Georgia. Over the course of the next few years we offered books and services for Well Being. Music and Classes and Workshops brought the community together and allowed our participants to explore their own versions of Self Healing and Well Being. I had made a Growth Choice.

Fear Choices

Years after that, my husband Charlie and I made another Growth Choice and purchased land in the Mountains of North Carolina. But instead of honoring that choice, we panicked and began to make a series of fear choices. “Money, we need money” we said. So instead of developing the land, we both found jobs we didn’t like, but paid good money. We worked these jobs about 3 years, exhausting ourselves, and then were fired (we had never been fired before in our lives!). Instead of looking at the land and what we wanted to do (growth choice), we immediately found new jobs that pain good money and began to work again exhausting ourselves (fear choice). Once again, after a time, we were both fired from these second jobs. And we woke up and looked at the land. Finally, in growth choices, we build a Labyrinth on the Land and opened at store and website, which are going strong 20 years later!

Fear Choices are made in a state of panicked “what if”.  In that state we stop trusting ourselves and the Universe and begin to imagine worse case scenarios. These images take over. The more we send energy to “I’ve got to do this or that will occur and ruin me”, the more we attract just what we feared. We know, we’ve been there! Our advice? Be mindful of your energy, your feelings when making choices. Is there a feeling of dread, or hopelessness about a choice? Is there a feeling of sacrifice, of martyrdom?  Do you find yourself saying “I should do this so ____ (blank) will approve of me, or like me, or even love me” Or even, I’ve done this all my life and its too late to change now”.

No Choice is Truly Bad unless we Make it That Way.

It is possible to make a choice out of fear and then grow. A bad job may teach us that we never again will belittle anyone. A bad relationship may teach us that never again will be belittle d ourselves. When this occurs, growth choices help us move away from just tolerating life into living life with joy and abundance. The bottom line is, the more we are aware of our own energy, the more we can monitor our choices, and the more we can choose growth and feel grateful of our choices.

Tips for Making Growth Choices

The next time you need to make a major (or even minor) choice, sit a minute and breathe. Take 3 or 4 deep breaths. Ask yourself “Am I ready to make a choice now?” If no, stop and come back to it later. If yes, choose and see how you feel. Are you relieved that you made the choice, or are you starting to tense up because of the choice? If you are becoming tense, then wait awhile and ask again if you are ready. Don’t confuse excitement with tension. Excitement sends you mind fantasizing good outcomes and great ideas. Tension sends your mind fantasizing worse case scenarios. Let your choices percolate until there is a knowing deep inside that “this is right for me right now”. That’s enough. All we can ever do is follow that calm knowing that ‘this is right for now”. And that’s a growth choice           !

Jill N. Henry, EdD

Owner, Mountain Valley Center. com

Experiencing Fully creates the Well Being atmosphere for Self Healing to Occur.

There is an innate desire in all of us to be involved in something that takes us beyond our isolated, small self.  To be free of the limitations our subconscious mind imposes on us in its remaking of the past day after day. There is a need to expand our consciousness to include more than just ourselves. Abraham Maslow called this a state of Self Transcendence and identified 8 Behaviors and 14 Values that are seen in a Self Transcendent Person. (see initial article).  When we reach this state of Transcendence, we naturally express these Behaviors and Values. The way to reach this state of Being for most of us is by practicing these behaviors and values in our own lives. (Every once in a while someone gets there through dramatic revelation -  an out of body death experience, or a spiritual experience, or 40 days and nights in the wilderness, but most of us do it one step and a time).  The path to Self Transcendence is the spiral path of life and, I believe, the reason we’ve chosen to be here now.

Unwrapping the Behavior of Experiencing Fully

Today we are going to explore Behavior # 1- Experiencing fully, vividly, selflessly with full concentration and total absorption.

Experiencing Fully implies experiencing with not only the mind, but all the senses. Seeing the experience, Feeling the experience, Smelling the experience, Touching the Experience, Hearing the Experience. When you think about the last time you experienced something fully, what comes to mind? Take a moment and let the image surface from below into your conscious mind. One image that comes to my mind is from hoisting a sail on windjammer ship to the sound of a bagpipe playing when I was in my 20’s. If I let myself, I can feel the rope, see the sail, hear the music, smell the ocean and the canvas of the sale. What is your experience.

Experiencing Vividly brings to mind an almost overpowering sense of the experience. Sometimes these attributes of experiencing fully can be negative. Vividly, for me, is an experience of receiving very bad news about a person I loved who was in the hospital. I remember going out to the car, sitting behind the wheel, and crying ‘vividly’. In fact, I was crying so hard that a stranger, a little old lady, came up and tapped on my window, asking if I was all right. “Sure” I said, smiled until she went away, and then went back to crying!

Experiencing Selflessly is about what we do in service of other beings. It’s a mother changing her newborn’s diaper. Or a nurse or therapist caring for a patient. Sometimes it’s just taking the dog for a walk when we really don’t feel like it, but once on the walk we notice we feel better. Its comforting a friend even if it makes you late for an appointment. Most of us do hundreds of selfless acts a day, but we don’t value them and therefore we forget them.

Experiencing with Full Concentration and Total Absorption is what happens whenever we are doing what we love to do! Time no longer exists. The world outside our focus does not exist. We are alone with our Being. We are “In the Flow” of our Life. What we are doing is unimportant. Maybe we are painting a picture, or meditating, or listening to music, or dancing, or… The rest from the world that Concentration and Absorption give us is the frequency of Healing. We have no room for worry, doubt or fear in that moment. Being one with what we are doing allows us to be One with everything in the Universe.

Final Questions

How many times during your week do you experience your life fully, vividly, selflessly with full concentration and total absorption?  What can you do to increase this experience in the coming days and weeks? Developing this awareness, this Be Here Now as Ram Dass says, will enhance your Well Being and set the stage for your Self Healing.

Dr. Jill Henry, EdD

Year of Transcendence into Well Being

 The Big Problems are:

  1. To make the good person, the “responsible for himself and his own evolution” person; 
  2. To make the good society – one species, one world.

-Abraham Maslow, 1969


Abraham Maslow and the Hierarchy of Needs

             You may remember Abraham Maslow, who in the in the late 1960's developed a hierarchical theory of human needs. Maslow was a humanistic psychologist, later a transpersonal psychologist, who believed that people are not controlled by mechanical forces alone. He focused on human potential, believing that humans strive to reach the highest levels of their capabilities.  As a humanistic psychologist, Maslow is most recognized for his pyramid of needs. He investigated what motivates people. At the basic level, humans are motivated by Biological and Physiological Needs - the need for oxygen, food, water- basic survival. Once these needs have been satisfied, the next motivation comes from Security and Safety Needs - the need for shelter, clothing, a consistent daily life style. Next are Social Needs - the need for love, affection and belonging. Ego and Self Esteem Needs follow - the need for respect from others, to feel satisfied, self confident and valuable. The top of Maslow's original pyramid was Self-Actualization and Fulfillment Needs - the need for work or vocation, the need to be involved in some cause beyond themselves.


Prior to his death in 1970, Maslow was working on a final "need", that of Self-transcendence. In studying self-actualized people, he found a unique group that had gone beyond the others in their development. This group was characterized by higher spiritual values and behaviors. In addition, this group reported more moments of "peak experiences" happening in their daily lives. Peak experiences have certain basic characteristics that include: a giving up of the past and future; an innocence of perceiving and behaving, a connection to the Real Self through the loss of ego and self-forgetfulness; strength and courage; acceptance and a positive attitude, spontaneity and expressiveness; integration of B-values; and trust.


             Only by going beyond one's self, can one discover the ultimate Self that is Source.

Maslow went on to list the behaviors he discovered that lead toward peak experiences and a spiritual way of Being in the world.

Behaviors leading towards self-transcendence include:

  1. Experiencing fully, vividly, selflessly with full concentration and total absorption.
  2. Making growth-choices instead of fear choices.
  3. Understanding that there is a self to be actualized and listening to the impulse voices within to let the self emerge.
  4. When in doubt, being honest.
  5. Choosing wisely by listening to own self at each moment in life.
  6. Using one's intelligence - working to do well the thing one wants to do.
  7. Inviting peak experiences to occur in one's life.
  8. Opening oneself up to oneself and making oneself "sacred under the aspect of eternity".

Being Values

Maslow concluded that there are 14 ultimate values - Being Values - that enable the problems of the individual and the world to be resolved. These values include: Truth (honesty); Goodness (benevolence); Beauty (rightness); Wholeness (interconnectedness); Aliveness (spontaneity); Uniqueness (individuality); Perfection (nothing lacking); Completion (fulfillment); Justice (fairness); Simplicity (essentiality); Richness (nothing is unimportant); Effortlessness (ease and lack of strain); Playfulness (humor and fun); and Self-sufficiency (not needing anything other than itself in order to be itself).

Being Values are the characteristics of being fully human, the preferences of full human people, the characteristics of selfhood or identity in peak experiences. They are characteristic of ideal art, ideal children, ideal theories, ideal science and knowledge. They are the far goals of all psychotherapies, the far goals of all education, the far goals of religions. They are the characteristics of the ideally good environment and of the ideally good society.

Imagine a world of self-transcendent beings. Imagine every store you shop at, every company representative you deal with, every person in every car on every highway, and every family member demonstrating the Being Values. Hard to picture? That's OK. Because we will all be there one day. It is a basic need of every individual. And every person works in his or her own way to try and fulfill that need. That's why we are here on the earth plane. That is what our Souls are guiding us towards. So begin the journey within yourself. Feel the Flow, practice daily, and watch miracles unfold in your life.

excerpt from Energy SourceBook, The Fundamentals of Personal Energy, by Dr. Jill Henry, Llewellyn 2014


May You Be Well, May You be Happy!

Blossom Festival at Mountain Valley Center

Blossom Festival at Mountain Valley Center

Blossom Festival has been re-scheduled to the Spring of 2019

Blossom FestivalFri Aug 10, 2018 12:00 pm - Sun Aug 12, 2018 11:00 pm
at the Otto Labyrinth Park and Mountain Valley Center,  43 Shambala Way, Otto, NC 28763
"When we shine the light for others the light shines back on ourselves".
Blossom is Imaginationland's first ever "Imaginationland presents…" event. This is a fundraiser to raise money for The Imaginationland Project. The event includes playfulness, seed planting, dream sowing, local artisans, and is rooted in family fun. During the day will be "Blossoming" related workshops, healing services, classic outdoor children's games (like our giant Twister board), and local vendors. Come evening there will be a central fire with drumming, dancing, and fire/flow zones. The focus is on sustainability on a personal and collective level, this means "Please bring your own needs (BYON) and then take them back out again!!!!" Otherwise known as Pack it in Pack it out!
General Admission includes camping is $111.00.  Day Pass for Saturday August 11th is 44.00
More Information at:
If you would like to help out, donate time, skills, wares, etc...please message us at

2018 Otto Labyrinth Park Gatherings

The first Gathering at the Otto Labyrinth Park was in the Summer of 1998. We had just completed building the Labyrinth, and 5 of us Gathered to walk it, build a fire, drum and sing. Over the past 20 years we have offered Gatherings throughout the Spring, Summer and Fall. Sometimes 5 people attend, other times 60 people come. Always the perfect number for the Energy that's needed at the time.Gathering at the Otto Labyrinth Park

This year we return to our roots -the original Labyrinth Gathering We will meet at 7 pm at the Labyrinth. A brief visit to the Faerie Forest starts the Gathering, followed by a group walk Gathering at the Otto Labyrinth Parkto the Center of the Labyrinth. At the center a guided meditation allows us to lift our Energy in service of the World as well as ourselves. We then walk out to sit around the fire, drumming, talking and sharing as the night approaches and the moon comes out.

Gatherings are always Free. We do appreciate any love offerings you make to support the maintenance of the Park.

So plan to join us this year. What the world needs now is the Energy of Peace and Renewal. We are pleased to offer a place to connect throughout the years.

2018 Labyrinth Gathering Schedule

Saturdays, 7-9 pm

Note: Gatherings are held on the Saturday closest to the Full Moon

May 26~ Flower, Milk or Dyad Moon - Flowers come into full bloom and corn is ready to plant. Actual Full Moon Date is May 29th

June 30 ~ Mead or Strawberry Moon - In late June the  meadows, or meads, were ready to be mowed for hay.  Also called The Strawberry Moon, as Strawberry picking season reaches its peak during this time. Actual Full Moon Date is June 28th

July 28~ Hay or Buck Moon - Hay is gathered to be dried and stored. and deer start growing velvety hair-covered antlers in July. Actual Full Moon Date is July 27th

August 25~ Sturgeon or Barley Moon - Sturgeon are most readily caught during this month. It was also called the Green Corn Moon or Grain Moon. Persephone, virgin Goddess of rebirth, carries a sheaf of barley as a symbol of the harvest. Actual Full Moon Date is August 26th

September 22~ Corn or Harvest Moon - Harvest Moon, occurs closest to the Autumn Equinox. The chief Indian staples of corn, pumpkins, squash, beans, and wild rice are now ready for gathering. Actual Full Moon Date is September 24th

rainbow in trees gidA Healing Place allows you to type your first name into a comment box to receive healing  prayers from others while at the same time giving healing prayers to others. It is a tool for connection, sharing, and community.

We are all connected! We are like drops of water in an Ocean of Life.  An invisible field of Energy connects each of us, all the time.  Distant Prayer and Distant Healing work through this mystical, magical and scientific Energy connection.

When you are in need of Energy, of Prayer, comment  below with your first name.  When you read a name, send a Prayer to that person (or pet, or organization, or….)

You may listen to/watch the following video created by Charlie as you give and receive prayers to help align your energy for the highest good of each and all of us!

Many Blessings on your Path!

Jill and Charlie