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5 Questions for Jalaja Bonheim

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Photo Credit: Elaine Derby

Circle work facilitator and teacher Jalaja Bonheim offers a fresh perspective on our egos in her new book, Sacred Ego: Making Peace with Ourselves and Our World.1. What happens in a circle gathering, like the one you facilitated between Palestinian and Jewish women?In my circles, we cocreate an extremely potent field of love that changes how we perceive ourselves and others—I call it “Seeing with sacred eyes.” We’re still Jews or Palestinians, Christians or Muslims, but more fundamentally, we’re women on a sacred path. Women have always gathered in hard times to heal, support, and comfort each other. So it feels very natural for us to connect in this way that honors each woman’s unique beauty.2. You describe heart-shame as a “huge obstacle to our collective healing.” What do you mean by this?Heart-shame is like a straightjacket around the heart that makes us suppress our tenderness and vulnerability in favor of a tough façade. It’s keeping us from enjoying the intimate, authentic relationships we long for, and worse still, it’s got us stuck in a suicidal cycle of violence and warfare.3. One of your stor …

Alma Tassi is the Digital Content Director for Spirituality & Health magazine. She has worked for several magazines and edited books on spirituality, personal growth, and women's issues.


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