Dandelion Effect Podcast - Donna Eden: Self-Healing with Energy Medicine

Donna Eden: Self-Healing with Energy Medicine

Donna Eden is a pioneer in the field of Energy Medicine, and she was born with the gift of literally being able to see the body’s energies, in the forms of colors and geometrical shapes. After five specialists told her she had 9 months to 2 years to live, she healed herself from multiple sclerosis, allergies, asthma and the effects of a heart attack at age 27. She then honed her skills and learned how to accurately determine the causes of physical and psychological problems based on the state of a person’s energies, and devise highly effective treatments for her clients and students.

She’s co-authored several books with her husband Dr. David Feinstein, including Energy Medicine, Energy Medicine for Womenand The Promise of Energy Psychology. Donna has taught tens of thousands of people all over the world how to engage with the healing and restorative power of their own energies, and her time teaching at the Feathered Pipe Ranch played an instrumental role in catapulting her career.

Her personal story is fascinating and inspiring, and yet, she believes that each one of us is born being able to see energy and that it’s a tool that lies dormant if it’s not used. Throughout her career, she’s seen over and over again that we all have the capacity to tune into energy—what she calls “The Language of the World”—and use it for experiencing mental clarity, physical vitality and joy.

In this conversation, I ask Donna to read my aura—I just couldn’t help myself!—and she shares her opinion on why so many people suffer from modern dis-ease. She also graciously walks us through four incredibly simple tools for alleviating stress and calming the nervous system.

Donna admits that year 79, her age as of this interview, has been her best year yet, and you will hear it in her voice, her laugh, her tone—she is full of energy. You can practically see her smile through your ears.

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Episode Transcript

Donna Eden  00:01
You know something about me that I think some people have a hard time grasping? I have to look at the news every day. I want to be a witness to what they’re going through and see even the terror. If anything, I just want to pulse a little bit of joy and healing and love, and just be there. And that is with my whole life. I like to be there for somebody who’s going through something. That being with one another—we are one in this world, and it just makes me cry. It makes me happy and joyous. It isn’t being stressed out that’s going to save us; getting to joy will save us.

Andy Vantrease  00:58
Welcome to the Dandelion Effect Podcast, a space for organic conversation about the magic of living a connected life. Just like the natural world around us, we are all linked through an intricate web, a never-ending ripple that spans across the globe. Here, we explore the ideas that our guests carry through the world, remember who and what inspired them along the way, and uncover the seeds that helped them blossom into their unique version of this human experience.

This podcast is a production of the Feathered Pipe Foundation, whose mission is to help people find their direction through access to programs and experiences that support healing, education, community and empowerment.

Donna Eden is a pioneer in the field of Energy Medicine, and she was born with the gift of literally being able to see the body’s energies, in the forms of colors and geometrical shapes. After five specialists told her she had 9 months to 2 years to live, she healed herself from multiple sclerosis, allergies, asthma and the effects of a heart attack at age 29. She then honed her skills and learned how to accurately determine the causes of physical and psychological problems based on the state of a person’s energies, and devise highly effective treatments for her clients and students.

She’s co-authored several books with her husband Dr. David Feinstein, including Energy Medicine, Energy Medicine for Women, and The Promise of Energy Psychology. Donna has taught tens of thousands of people all over the world how to engage with the healing and restorative power of their own energies, and her time teaching at the Feathered Pipe Ranch played an instrumental role in catapulting her career.

Her personal story is fascinating and inspiring, and yet, she believes that each one of us is born being able to see energy and that it’s a tool that lies dormant if it’s not used. Throughout her career, she’s seen over and over again that we all have the capacity to tune into energy—what she calls “The Language of the World”—and use it for experiencing mental clarity, physical vitality and joy.

In this conversation, I ask Donna to read my aura—I just couldn’t help myself!—and she shares her opinion on why so many people suffer from modern disease. She also graciously walks us through four incredibly simple tools for alleviating stress and calming the nervous system. Donna admits that year 79, her age as of this interview, has been her best year yet, and you will hear it in her voice, her laugh, her tone—she is FULL of energy. You’ll be able to practically see her smile through your ears.

I also want to take a moment to say a huge thank you to everyone who has followed along with this show over the last year and a half. It began as a way to stay connected when the Feathered Pipe Ranch had to cancel their season in 2020, and now here we are, this episode wrapping up Season Two of the podcast. We will be taking a break for the summer as the busy season at the Ranch runs from June 1st to October 1st. If you haven’t visited the Feathered Pipe Ranch yet, visit FeatheredPipe.com to see which programs still have openings.

Without further adieu, I’m Andy Vantrease, and you are listening to The Dandelion Effect Podcast with our friend and special guest, Donna Eden.

Andy Vantrease
I’m really honored to be talking with you. I’ve heard your name so many times. I have spoken with and worked with Lauren Walker quite a bit over the last few years, and it feels like I’m going straight to the source of some of the things that I have been able to study with energy medicine yoga over the years. It’s exciting for both me and the Ranch, so I appreciate you being here.

Donna Eden  04:41
It’s exciting for me. I feel a deep connection and bond with the Ranch. It’s interesting—the years go by and I’m not going there anymore, but I want to again. I’d like to go again.

Andy Vantrease  04:55
Yeah, we have quite a few people that haven’t been there in a while, but they were like you in that they got their professional start at the Ranch and are now deciding to come back to not necessarily teach, but just visit.

Donna Eden  05:10
I am believing and hoping that I will get to the Feathered Pipe again. I want to—I really want to.

Andy Vantrease  05:18
Later in the conversation, I’m excited to get into how you even heard about it and all of that, but I want to start with your personal life and journey. I’ve heard you say before that you were born to a mother that also saw and felt energy.

Donna Eden  05:35
Yes.

Andy Vantrease  05:36
And so, it was something that you were born with, and it was nurtured in your life?

Donna Eden  05:41

It was so normal.

Andy Vantrease  05:42
Do you have early memories of knowing that you had this ability to see energy and auras?

Donna Eden  05:50
First of all, I thought every human being on the planet saw energy. I had no idea that this was different. I was 20 years old before I found out that other people didn’t see energy. I was stunned. I didn’t know how they made up their minds to do things. I didn’t know how they figured out anything. I came to understand that they were developing their brains, and some of them got very left brain, so they moved away from their more intuitive side. Well, I was so on the intuitive side that in my later years, I’m really liking going into my brain a bit.

Andy Vantrease  06:28
Yeah, which is kind of the opposite of our society and what we’re taught in school, and this path that we’re led down. What was it like growing up? Where did you grow up? Do you have early childhood memories?

Donna Eden  06:41
Yeah, I had a brother and a sister and a mama and a daddy. We all felt sorry for daddy because we knew he couldn’t see energy. We thought he was this one little person in the world who was without any handle on anything. So, we did feel sorry for my dad. My brother and my sister see energy, and my mother always talked about it. “What color do you see around that man?” Or, “Did you see how it changed, that color?” She just always talked about it. I always thought my mother saw energy because she was orphaned very young, when she was just turning four, and then she was raised in an orphanage. Nobody told her that you couldn’t do that. She just thought that was what was, and that would help her survive in this world without parents if she was never adopted. She wanted to be the best mother in the whole world, and she’d have to make up what it means to be a mom. And one of the things is to really prepare your kids about what colors mean.

Andy Vantrease  07:47
When you say you see energy, it’s colors around people? Some people have heard the word aura. Can you try to break it down?

Donna Eden  07:54
Color is only part of it. I see geometrical shapes a lot of the time, and I’ve come to understand what they mean. I think the one that is really important to me right now, because it’s growing for me and I’m seeing it around people now and then, is what I call the diamond inlay. I think because of the world we live in today, that’s help from some other place. That’s all I can say. It helps you to do a whole bunch of stuff: It widens your consciousness. It helps you to see into other people and what they’re going through. It connects you far away—you can send healing energy so far when you’ve got that force in your field. And it’s very bright and wonderful when you see it. Sometimes you’ll see it around somebody who you’ve never seen it around before, and you know that they’re expanding and widening. I think it’s because we have to evolve. We have got to evolve, and we don’t have another million years to get it together, which is how long it usually takes. So, I think we’re getting out—I really do.

Andy Vantrease  09:09
You mentioned that seeing the energy helped you make decisions, and you realized when you were 20, like, how are other people navigating their lives? Were you looking for certain colors, certain shapes, or just a certain feel in your body? How did it help you make decisions throughout your life? What were you following?

Donna Eden  09:29
It’s everything; it’s another intelligence. It really is the language our body speaks—energy. When you’re born with it, you just learn over time what different things mean, like you learn language. The one thing I was sure I would never do is teach—never in a million years, because I’d never be able to find the words to be able to say everything I’m seeing and feeling. I’ve had to find words. For example, I remember when I was tiny and sitting on my front porch. I couldn’t walk yet, so I was very young. Right next door to us was a little boy named Sammy Hinka, who was about five years older than me. He was about six, probably. There were three girls that came walking down the street that were about his age. They were mean, and they were saying, “We don’t like you, Sammy Hinka,” and all these horrible things. I watched Sammy’s aura shrinking back down into him. And, I wondered, “How in the world could they ever say those things to him when this is the result?” It really hurt somebody. Later on, I got married once before my present husband, who I’ve been with for over 40 years now—and I realized that my first husband couldn’t see energy, so he didn’t have a natural help to know that, “Wait a minute, I’m hurting this person.”

Andy Vantrease  11:10
Yeah, that’s interesting. And what was the experience that you had when you found out that not everybody saw it? What was that interaction?

Donna Eden  11:20
It was such a shock to my soul and my spirit, and I felt sorry for everybody in the whole world. Maybe that’s why they judge each other, or why they say something mean to somebody, because they can’t see how the colors and energies are reacting in their body and around their body. My first husband was going to have me committed, because in the state of California at that time, a man could commit his wife without getting a doctor’s note.

Andy Vantrease  11:50
Oh my goodness!

Donna Eden  11:52
But he was going to do it because he was so afraid people would think he was married to a nutcase if I ever spoke like that to people.

Andy Vantrease  12:00
Was he the first person that made you realize that not everybody saw the things that you saw?

Donna Eden  12:06
Yes, he was the first person because it was such an issue in his life. He was just freaked. Our marriage didn’t have a chance, let me tell you. But I have one daughter who does aura readings, and she’s been out at the Ranch a lot of times. When she was little, she could see colors and energy. And then when she went to school, she literally got put into a corner for talking about colors around somebody. And then it just went dormant. That’s what I see happen for people. It’s not that it’s gone and it’s not there, it’s just gone dormant and asleep. We have five different certification programs around the world, and what I’ve seen is people who start studying for a long time, very often they’ll start seeing the colors again. So, it just opens again. My daughter is opened again, so she is doing aura readings.

Andy Vantrease  13:02
Do you believe that it’s an ability that every human has?

Donna Eden  13:06
Yes. And if you think about it, have you ever picked up a baby and had them look all around your head, but they’re not really looking at you? They’re looking at your aura, and those pretty colors around your head.

Andy Vantrease  13:19
I’m thinking of my niece—she’s seven months now—and I’m thinking of what she’s looking at. I’ve never thought about that before. I’ll have to pay closer attention.

Donna Eden  13:28
I used to have a private practice. I don’t any longer—no time—but in the old days, I had a private practice. And when a couple would come to me when they were pregnant, they’d say, “We’d really like this child to be able to see energies.” And I’d say, “Then keep talking about it. Don’t quit talking. From the time they’re born, talk about it.” Talk about the colors around a person, or ask “What do you see here?” Because by the time they’re at least a year, it’s dormant.

Andy Vantrease  13:58
Oh, it happens that quickly.

Donna Eden  14:00
It happens that quickly, because people have so much to learn in that first year of life. I mean, everything. And so, when that one is not being used, it’s just chucked for a while. Sometimes you’ll see it stay alive in somebody, but for most people it doesn’t. It’s gone by a year old.

Andy Vantrease  14:21
I would be remiss if I did not ask you, because I don’t know if this is the only time that I will be in your presence or not. I’m curious if there are any colors that you see in me? I’m curious because I feel like I’m going through a color transition in what I’m drawn to. When it comes to energy, a lot of it has to do with what I’m drawn to in my fashion. I used to be orange.

Donna Eden  14:49
Yes, yes. It’s not orange. You’re not orange. You’ve got lots and lots of colors in your aura. And all of the other colors change when you’re going through something, or when you’re evolving. Those colors change. There are two colors that never change—the one that’s closest to your body is the etheric field, and it kind of mirrors you. And the other one is the one that is furthest out, or what I call the life color. The life color is the one that I think you’ve probably had for lifetimes upon lifetimes. You’re evolving in it, and all of your challenges come up in that color. That color is violet. You’re a violet life color, and violets are very old souls. They’re old souls, but they didn’t learn everything they needed to learn from their last lifetime. My own hit is that violets either ran the world or were the victims of the world in all these other lifetimes. And whether they ran the world or they were the victim of the world, when they got to the end of that life, they said, “Was that all there was?” They didn’t get to experience it and feel it in their bodies and souls enough. And I think that this is a lifetime that violets are trying to get free. It’s a good lifetime for you. Your next lifetime is going to be unbelievable.

Andy Vantrease  16:19
Interesting.

Donna Eden  16:21
India was a purple—an advanced being.

Andy Vantrease  16:24
Yeah, even thinking of the chakras, isn’t that the color of that highest chakra?

Donna Eden  16:29
Yeah. I wish I could tell you everything in your whole field, but it’s harder for me to look through electronics.

Andy Vantrease  16:36
I was wondering that.

Donna Eden  16:38

Yeah, it’s hard, but I can see the violet because it’s very loud in you. It’s funny you said you’re moving away from orange. It’s usually when there is change happening. I can see it straight through electronics; it doesn’t matter. So, you’re going through changing.

Andy Vantrease  16:52
Yeah, that is for sure. One of the things that I’m really interested in when I interview people is essentially the moments that shaped them. I know that you’ve had a really interesting personal health journey. Can you tell me a little bit about that?

Donna Eden  17:11
Yes, yes. Let me get a drink of iced tea here.

Andy Vantrease  17:15
Wet your palate, this might be a big story.

Donna Eden  17:17
Yes, that was big. The first thought that came to mind when you asked that was from when I was four years old. In those days we lived in a place called Hollydale, which is just out near Downey. There wasn’t a lot of city around there—it was a little suburb. And my mother was in the hospital, dying of tuberculosis. She lived—I’ll tell you that. We were told she wasn’t going to live, and to prepare. My dad was gone somewhere. I don’t know where my brother and sister were, but down about two blocks away, they were having a church revival and I could hear the singing. It was nighttime, and at four years old I walked down and went to the church revival. I walked into a section for teenagers, and this 16-year-old boy was leading everybody in song. I can’t sing, but the song he sang changed everything because I was terrified of losing my mom. I was also thinking, “Well, nobody knows me. I’m too young yet. I could go ahead and die in her place, and then come back another time.” I was thinking those things.

The world couldn’t live without Mama. And so, I was thinking this as I was walking through the revival, but I was so sad. I didn’t want Mama to die. And the song was, “You can S-M-I-L-E, when you can’t say a word. You can S-M-I-L-E, when you cannot be heard. You can S-M-I-L-E, when it’s cloudy or fair, you can [smile] anytime, anywhere.” And I began to sing with them on this chant. I could feel a smile come up from my soul, and it had nothing to do with smiling at people. It was just the most heavenly experience I had ever felt in the whole world. I knew it was going to be okay no matter what happened. No matter what happened, I would still be linked with Mama. I was in joy like you can’t believe.

Andy Vantrease  19:38
Wow, and so you said your mom ended up not dying at that time?

Donna Eden  19:43
Well, she came home. Gosh, I can’t believe I’m saying this one, but I always had this angel who walked next to me. She was seven feet tall, and we were together wherever we went. Mama had just come home, and we had actually gotten a court order to let her do so that said if we were quarantined, she could stay with us. Everybody was afraid of tuberculosis at the time, so they just assumed she was going to die there. And I said to the angel, “If I was an angel like you, I could heal her.” I just swallowed that angel that day, and Mama got well!

Andy Vantrease  20:23
That’s a fun story.

Donna Eden  20:27
Well, as time went on, I really had a lot of ailments, and I did get tuberculosis. She got well, and I got it. And then I was allergic to everything. When I did get well, I was allergic to everything. I just couldn’t eat anything other people could eat. It didn’t make sense, because you always heard that vegetables and fruit are so good for you. Well, those were the things that I was allergic to. Everything that grew out of the ground, I couldn’t eat. And I had hypoglycemia really bad. I was always told I was on the edge of sugar diabetes. Once, I went into insulin shock and the hospital gave me some insulin thinking that I was sugar diabetic. It nearly killed me because it was exactly the opposite—I had way too much insulin.

Andy Vantrease  21:13
Wow. And what age was this, Donna?

Donna Eden  21:16
Well, it began around five and then it went all the way up, and I continued to be allergic to everything. So, that was just a part of everything. I ate nothing but the best stuff. I never tasted sugar until I was in seventh grade, and boy did I want it then when I tasted it. Sugar never bothered me like vegetables and fruit bothered me, though. I think it was because my body craved something to keep the energy going, and sugar could really rev it up. And then I got multiple sclerosis at 16. Years before that we had moved to Ramona, California. It’s a little town an hour and a half in from San Diego, up in the mountains. And a man moved there who had retired, who was considered the number one endocrinologist in the world. He was the first person who told me about my multiple sclerosis, even though we already knew it. My mother took me to see him. He took all these tests, and he said, “You can’t ever eat fruit and vegetables again,” but I knew that because I’d get so sick from them.

I was always just a little bit chubby, and I didn’t eat much. But he said, “Here’s what I want you to do. I want you to get off of every kind of food. Just eat straight meat. That’s all—just straight meat. You can eat as much of it as you want, morning, noon, and night. Don’t ever let yourself go hungry. Just eat, eat, eat. And then let me check all your vitals in a couple of weeks.” One of the things that happened was I lost 17 pounds, just eating, eating, eating. Anyway, I saw a few doctors, and nobody could really help me, and neither could he. Nobody knew what they could do with multiple sclerosis. And I was getting worse and worse. I had a hard time walking, and then I had a heart attack at 27 because all my organs were breaking down. First of all, my mother was never worried. She always said, “Heal yourself, for goodness sakes. Just heal yourself. What are you thinking, you would go to somebody else? Heal yourself.” And really, my mother got herself completely well, a second time. When I was 16, she got TB again. This time, there was no chance she would ever walk out of that hospital again. And she decided, “Okay, I have to heal myself.” And she did. Anyway, that’s also what I did. When I had the fifth specialist say to me, “There’s nothing that we can do for you. All your organs are breaking down so quickly. You’ve got kids. Find homes for them. Find a way.”

Andy Vantrease  24:01
Didn’t one of them give you an estimate of nine months to live?

Donna Eden  24:05
Yes. And somebody else gave me maybe up to two years, but that was the most. For whatever reason, I didn’t feel frightened when that fifth doctor said that. I heard Mama saying, “Heal yourself.” I thought, “I’ll go home, and I’ll heal myself.” I did not have a brain to tell me what to do. I just started laying my hands on myself in different places and noticing what happened then. Every time I did something, what happened then? I wanted to get my legs stronger so I could really get around the house easier and not have to be in a wheelchair, so that’s what I did. I just started working on my legs. But what was interesting was the multiple sclerosis didn’t heal first. The first thing that happened was all my allergies went away. All of them. And it was amazing. I was eating bread, potatoes, and string beans, for God’s sake! I loved it so much.

Andy Vantrease  25:03
Yeah, everything probably tasted amazing.

Donna Eden  25:06
It was so wonderful. And eating all that food, I kept losing weight. I realized my metabolism had been turned off all those years. Probably if my body tried to metabolize something that was poison, it would have killed me. I think there was some intelligence that I knew was inside of me. I also had asthma really bad, and my asthma went away. And then my multiple sclerosis started going away. I had buzzing all over my body, all over my face, everywhere. You know that feeling when your foot or hands fall asleep? That’s what I felt everywhere. Sometimes I couldn’t talk because the buzzing was too much, so I couldn’t move my mouth. And that went away. I was getting more and more excited about everything. I was obnoxious when I was well because I wanted to tell everybody so badly.

Andy Vantrease  26:01
Yeah, it’s just such a contagious feeling of, “I cannot believe that this just happened, and I have to shout it from the rooftops!”

Donna Eden  26:09
Yeah, that’s exactly it. And that’s what I did—I’d drag people into my house. I’d see somebody on the street, and I would say, “Here, let me tell you what you can do for that!” And they didn’t know how I knew that they had it. Nobody was aware that I was seeing their energy, but I could see if they had cancer, or whatever it was. And so, I just started teaching classes. In the beginning, my very first class was five bucks for the whole weekend. I wanted a whole lot of room to make mistakes, because I knew I couldn’t find my words, but I knew I had something that I could tell them about and share. In the beginning, I didn’t think I was teaching. I thought, “I’m just sharing with people what they can do for themselves.”

Andy Vantrease  26:55
Yeah. So, tell me a little bit more about what that process was like. You said that you came home from getting these diagnoses, and you’re like, “I’m going to heal myself.” And you mentioned that you put your hands on different parts of your body. Were you putting your hands on places that you could see things?

Donna Eden  27:15
Yeah, on my quadriceps, my thighs, I could see it. But also, when I tried to walk, there was no energy in my quads at all and it just wouldn’t hold me up. So, I sat there, and I put one hand at the top of my legs and the other one around my knee. I would hold them just like that with my whole hand. And I noticed it only took three minutes for energy to start moving through there, and just be strong and vital. I thought, “Oh my god, this is so easy.” I was stunned that nobody had told me this. We live in a culture that lost this natural ability that is for everybody. This is our birthright, and it was gone. I was so excited. It was thrilling to continue to find places. Later on, I even found out where the Lung 1 point was.

Andy Vantrease  28:16
Chinese medicine meridians?

Donna Eden  28:17
Yes, and I would find wherever it hurt, and I would just stay there. Sometimes they’d be a surprise from something from so far away in my body. I’d be in one place, and somewhere else the reaction or the response was occurring. For example, holding here, my toes would come alive.

Andy Vantrease  28:39
Holding them right between your eyes?

Donna Eden  28:42
Right, my third eye. That really is the beginning of bladder meridian, which governs your nervous system. It all makes sense, but at that time, I didn’t know how it made sense. I just knew it worked.

Andy Vantrease  28:54
As you were trying things were you writing them down? Or were you just memorizing what worked for certain body parts? It sounds like at this point, you hadn’t studied energy systems yet. You hadn’t studied the meridians, or the chakras, or anything.

Donna Eden  29:09
No, nothing. Three years into it, I was walking, but I couldn’t climb hills or anything. This is one of those magical things—I met somebody at an airport, and she had a t-shirt on with two hands crossing here. It said underneath, “Touch for Health.” I went to her and I said, “What is that?” And she was real flighty and she said, “I’m so excited. I’m going up next week to become a Touch for Health instructor.” I felt like lightning struck me and I said, “Me too!” I asked how I could find out about it, and she gave me a phone number to call the Touch for Health Foundation. I called them, and they got my address and they had made a mistake. They wrote me and said, “Well, we understand you have passed all the classes to take your teacher’s training, and it starts on Tuesday.” I said, “Wonderful, I’m coming!” Now, I’d never taken a class.

Andy Vantrease  30:15
Yeah, you had taken your own classes.

Donna Eden  30:18
And it was an amazing, almost two-week training. You go and you live there. I was lost in some ways, and in some ways, it was exciting because I learned about the same places that I touched, and the names for them. And then there were a lot of things that nobody had. I’m still learning, and I continue to learn. You never get to the end of energy—it’s always there. This morning, I saw on the news that astronomers found the black hole in our solar system. They had never found it before, but they just knew it was there. They have a picture with all these stars around it that look just like bright suns. And that was kind of me. I knew it was all there, I just didn’t have the names for it.

Andy Vantrease  31:06
Yeah. Donna, did you ever go through any periods of time where because this wasn’t as mainstream or popular as it is now, or you didn’t have language to it, was there any challenge to your mind doubting it? Or were you just like, “I’ve seen this work, and I am strong in my conviction”?

Donna Eden  31:29
No. There was no doubt in my mind, ever. Not ever. It’s as if you were to doubt your brain or something. But you know what’s in your brain and what you’re thinking. I also was really fortunate. My mom would say things to me when I was young like, “Donna, all your life, people are not going to see you. They’re not going to be able to see you. It has nothing to do with you. Don’t try to do something to make them see you. It’s just where they are in their evolution.”

Andy Vantrease  32:01
That is huge for someone to hear.

Donna Eden  32:04
It was huge. I credit her with so much.

Andy Vantrease  32:08
Yeah. I’m curious to hear about when you went from using this energy to heal yourself, to then starting to share it with people and teaching. Where did your teaching converge with the Feathered Pipe Ranch? And where were you in your process with that?

Donna Eden  32:28
I don’t think I had my book yet. My book came out in ’98, so it was before the book. India called me up. She actually, at one point, came to Ashland, Oregon to see me. She said she just knew she wanted to get me to teach there. It was scary and exciting. I went, and it was so wonderful. She did have words—she had extraordinary words that she could put to my energy. And at one time I even suggested maybe I should be showing people what energy does, but she could say it all.

Andy Vantrease  33:07
Yeah, we’ll co-teach.

Donna Eden  33:09
She said, “No, no, no, no. You’re going to be saying it.” But what she did do that first class that I taught at Feathered Pipe—there was a whole bunch of people who were really up in their heads. And she knew that they were having some trouble believing me. She did interpret. She was so wise and smart, and she just interpreted me. She made everybody ashamed of themselves.

Andy Vantrease  33:39
And did things shift after that?

Donna Eden  33:41
Oh, yeah. That was on the first night. It was on a Friday, Saturday, and Sunday. Friday night, she came in and she did that. And then she came in to just sit and be in the class after that. I loved her. For me, in my life, because energy is what is normal, I thought everybody was in my situation. I thought everybody saw energy. So, if you also had words, along with the energy, it’s like you had two languages that you could speak fluently. I can speak this language fluently, but not words. But as I’m getting older, I’m getting more and more words.

Andy Vantrease  34:17
You’ve taught all over the world, so you’ve had to find the words. I’ve just been introduced to energy medicine through Lauren, maybe three years ago. When I did her workshop last summer at the Ranch, I did the whole week. And there was just a profound shift in my tuning into myself. There were places where she said, “You might feel this, you might feel this,” and I went through the whole disappointment of not feeling things or seeing things, and then I just accepted that it was okay and just part of a process. I’m in my 30s and I’ve never thought about this stuff before. So, it’s going to take a while to surrender the mind and really to get into the body in that way.

Donna Eden  35:02
Yeah, we’re just in different places with it. Having to go up into my brain and have my brain give me the thoughts instead of my energy tell me is thrilling. And it’s just a learning.

Andy Vantrease  35:14
I know that you mentioned that at one point, India told you, “You’re not going to be here forever. This is going to be big time, and you’re going to be needed all over the world to help all over the world.”

Donna Eden  35:27
That’s what she told me.

Andy Vantrease  35:28
Was that after a few years of teaching at the Ranch?

Donna Eden  35:32
I’ve gone down to teach in Mexico about three times. And I love teaching in Mexico. I love teaching at Isla Mujeres.

Andy Vantrease  35:42
Okay, when they would do the travel programs?

Donna Eden  35:44
Yeah, it was just so fun, and I love that. Maybe there was even a slight bit of judgment of anybody who would ever say no to the Feathered Pipe. These people have the highest integrity, the biggest souls and hearts, and they really wanted to spread it. I never dreamed I wouldn’t be coming there, but it just was out of my hands. I felt like David and I, my husband—there was a movie once about the tail wagging the dog. We were just holding onto the tail, and that dog was wagging us all over the place. We didn’t know what we were doing. We didn’t know how to run a business. We didn’t know anything. We just answered the call.

Andy Vantrease  36:30
That’s beautiful. I think that one of the things about India—this has been my experience with her too—is just that deep belief in people that their gifts are needed in the world. And if that means that you are associated with the Ranch, and it’s one of your venues for a couple of years before you go off, that’s what’s needed. I’ve been a writer forever, and I would freelance write part time, and then I’d work at natural food stores or get these other little gigs. And she’d be like, “Stop working in grocery stores. You have to be writing. You have to be writing.” I still remember that to this day, because when somebody believes in you before you believe in yourself, it’s that catalyst.

Donna Eden  37:14
Yeah, she is an evoker of your spirit and your direction. She believes in people. She was incredibly wise. She may not have seen energy, but she knew it. Things would bubble up out of her and then find a way out of her mouth. It was astonishing.

Andy Vantrease  37:32
Do you have any memories of teaching at the Feathered Pipe Ranch or anything that comes to mind when you just reflect on what your time there was? Was there a certain energy there that you liked to play with when you taught, or anything in that realm?

Donna Eden  37:49
Wow, that’s a good question. Let me think about it. Do people teach in the same place as they used to teach…

Andy Vantrease  37:56
In the main lodge?

Donna Eden  37:57
Yeah, I really loved that space. It was a very healing space. And when I’d go out and start walking in the forest or around the grounds, I would always come back so replenished that I was ready to teach another class. It was really good. It was a very healing space for me.

Andy Vantrease  38:19

It’s wonderful to think about the fact that that place has been around, and people have been teaching there for almost 50 years. To think of all the people who have sat in a circle in that main lodge, and all of the people who have walked the grounds, and the healing that has happened there. It really is this vortex.

Donna Eden  38:40
It really was. It was an amazing thing. There’s something else I remember, and I never knew whether it was the space, or it was because India did it: We had a lot of left brain people in that very first class that I taught there. They were throwing questions at me. And suddenly, I didn’t know where those answers were coming from. They weren’t anything I’d ever thought of. I either felt that India gave it to me, or it was the space, that there had been so much healing in that space that I was just in the field and here it was coming.

Andy Vantrease  39:18
Were they like science-based questions?

Donna Eden  39:21
Yeah, they were much more rational, that people would be able to understand.

Andy Vantrease  39:25
That’s understandable, being introduced to something that is totally new. So as far as I know, your foundation of understanding of energy is a nine-system methodology. What I’m most interested in when it comes to your work, is that when you go out into the world and you’re teaching people and you’re experiencing people and hearing from them, both hearing their stories, but also, tuning into their energy and what’s going on with their bodies… what is it that you see the most of? Do you feel like there are modern ailments that majority of people are suffering from that has to do with the ways that we live these days?

Donna Eden  40:13
I’ve got a whole bunch of answers for that. One answer is that we evolved for a world we no longer live in. The world we evolved for was natural, and now everything is unnatural. The energies around us are man-made, and there’s pollutants in the paint and in the world around us. So, our bodies have had to figure out how to either adapt or throw it off. I think usually people get sick for one of these main reasons, that they can either adapt quickly to something that they’ve never been around. They didn’t evolve with some pollutant, so they don’t know how to adapt or throw it off, and so they’re vulnerable to it.

Another thing that I think makes us vulnerable is that, gosh, people are so much better and more wonderful than any of them know. People question themselves and are hard on themselves, or aren’t feeling safe in this world. All of that is an energy that interferes with the natural flows. Sometimes I’m just blown away with somebody so beautiful. My favorite seeing is somebody’s soul coming up. They’ve got this glorious soul, and yet, they’re talking nuts because that’s not what their soul is about. And I just think, “Gosh, that’s part of education that should have happened for everybody.” Underneath all of their stress levels are the radiant circuits. You’ve got to move those stress levels out of the way, and the radiant circuits often tap onto your soul. So, your soul comes up, and you can feel yourself more connected to something spiritual, or something bigger, or something more whole.

Andy Vantrease  42:06
Maybe what would be fun is just telling us one or two exercises, one or two points, something that you work with, that would begin to allow those stress levels to move out of the way of the radiant circuits in the soul.

Donna Eden  42:23
Okay, there’s a whole bunch of things you can do. I would tell everybody to just look up the daily energy routine on YouTube, or you can also put my name with it. It’s taught all over the world now, and it really helps train your body, your energies, to come up to date and evolve more quickly. You are suddenly more able to adapt or throw off energies, whether it’s somebody else’s negative energy, or if it’s something biological. I would say that first of all, but one real easy thing to do is if you’re not feeling connected up to yourself or anything around you, if you put one middle finger at the third eye, and the other one in your belly button, push both of them in and pull them up. And breathe. It may even make you want to breathe because it does move the oxygen. If you sit that way, for even a minute, it will connect up your nervous system. And things will just process better and a lot of stress will go out.

Here’s something else. In every system, they teach you about breathing. But a simple thing to remember, when you breathe in, more important is to breathe out. So, you want to breathe in deep and then let go. This one I learned when I had asthma. If I couldn’t catch my breath, even when it felt like there was no breath there to let go, I would start letting it go. And what that does, is that engages your vagus nerve, and your vagus nerve brings calm. Everything’s good. Everything’s safe, and it gives the message to everything in your whole body. It gives the message to calm down, then you can relax. That happens when you yawn as well. When you let your breath out, let that breath out from the back of your throat. So, if you can’t relax, if you have anxiety, you just can’t get out of something, see if you can just breathe out as far as you can, even to the point of coughing almost. And then do it again. You might get a little bit of a breath in because you need something to let go. It’s really, really good for you.

I’m going to talk you through an exercise I really love. I’ll see if I can say it well. Okay, everybody, close your eyes and place your fingers sideways over both of your eyes. Take a deep breath in, and as you let your breath out, drag your fingers to your temples. Now take a deep breath in and push your fingers above your ears. Let your breath out and go around behind your ears, and come down the side of your neck. You’re right on your vagus nerve, and also something called Triple Warmer. You’re going backwards on it. Then come down to your heart chakra.

What you just did, as you go across your eyes, that’s something called the regulator flow, and it helps regulate energy differently than you’ve been regulating it. When you come to your temples, that’s a Triple Warmer point that just helps you calm down. Go around your ears, you’re going backwards on Triple Warmer, that governs fight, flight or freeze. Then you go down your vagus nerve, Triple Warmer, and you come home to yourself on your heart.

I have one more, just one more. You know how kids all over the world make a heart [shape], that’s not really our heart? There’s a reason they do that. Come down to below your ribcage, take a deep breath in, up the central meridian around your breasts, go down and make a heart on your chest. A lot of people tell me they start to smile. That shape is the shape of an energy. It’s in the radiant circuits. It’s called the “bridge flow.” It bridges you to the center of you, bridges you to a safe world and other people that you feel good about. And kids do it all over the world because they may not see energy, but they know something. There’s a knowing, and that’s how they make a heart. I always love that. And when I’ve gone to areas of the world where they’re far less technological than we are, where there are more Indigenous people, they know that that’s an energy. We’re catching up to Indigenous folks.

Andy Vantrease  47:09
So much of those ancient wisdoms are being researched and proven in the left brain, proven with science and with modern technology. It’s interesting, because it really feels like there’s a resurgence of these innate understandings.

Donna Eden  47:28
Yes. There’s two beautiful women—I don’t know if you’ve ever heard of Jean Houston?

Andy Vantrease  47:33
I have, yeah.

Donna Eden  47:34
She’s an extraordinary soul, an extraordinary being. And she’s written a zillion books. One of my favorites is “Search for the Beloved.” And that’s really you. She and a woman named Anneloes Smitsman, I think, are writing a trilogy right now. They’ve just finished the second of the trilogy, and it’s “The Future Human,” of where we’re all going. It’s really good. It’s worth reading. And I think that with all of these things happening in the world right now, it’s a scary time for so many people with Ukraine and the unknowing, and COVID, and just everything. It’s a dying of the old world, and I think it’s just trying to break through. That diamond inlay is about consciousness, too. They write about consciousness, and it’s good.

Andy Vantrease  48:26
You are such an embodiment of joy and radiance, even just in your voice and in your smile. Every time I’ve heard you on any kind of podcast or video, I think, “Can I have even one ounce of the energy that she has? This is incredible.” Amidst all of those things that you just mentioned, all of the things that we experience right now, how is it that you stay connected? How is it that you continue to find some peace and joy?

Donna Eden  48:59
One of the things is to really see it, but know it. If you can’t see it, everybody should know it. The souls in everybody, even rotten human beings, their souls are much more pure [than we think]. When somebody’s doing something bad, you can remember that their soul was just trying to learn and get past this and be better. Also, I do think the world is so wonderful, it takes my breath away. I just get happy being in it. And you know something about me that I think some people have a hard time grasping? I have to look at the news every day. I want to be a witness to what they’re going through and see even the terrors. If anything, I just want to pulse a little bit of joy and healing and love, and just be there. That is with my whole life. I like to be there for somebody who’s going through something. That being with one another. We are one in this world and it just makes me cry. It makes me happy and joyous—and I love joy. It isn’t being stressed out that’s going to save us. It’s getting to joy that will save us. It makes your body healthier. It makes you like aging. I’m 79 years old, and I love being this age. I love it. It is not at all anything I was told it was going to be like when I got this age. It’s my best age so far.

Andy Vantrease  50:45
Donna Eden. What a fascinating person. Her joy and energy are so contagious! I practically floated away from my computer after that conversation and am so excited to dive into the new book on my nightstand The Energy to Heal, written by her student Lauren Walker, who developed Energy Medicine Yoga based on her experience with Donna’s work.

With all of the challenges we face in the world today, in the personal and the collective, I’m inspired by this episode with Donna and all of the other amazing people I’ve gotten to talk with this season. About food, technology, mental health, Native American spirituality and healing traditions, travel, sustainable building, the beginner’s mind, energy, and so much more. These conversations are proof that really good people are out there, leaving the planet just a tiny bit better than how they found it–or at least trying, as we all are, to do our best.

If you enjoyed this podcast, please give us a rating and review on Apple Podcasts and go back and listen to any episodes that you missed from seasons 1 and 2.

A special thank you to Matthew Marsolek and the Drum Brothers, whose music you hear at the beginning and end of this podcast, as well as Dr. Jean Shinoda Bolen, who first turned us on to the phenomenon of the Dandelion Effect and how ideas move through the world.

This podcast is a production of the Feathered Pipe Foundation, a 501c3 dedicated to healing, education, community and empowerment. If you’d like to help support this project, please visit FeatheredPipe.com/gratitude or leave a review on Apple podcasts and share with your friends. Be sure to tune in to our next episode in two weeks. We cannot wait to share another amazing conversation with you. Until then, have a beautiful day!