Author Archives: JoAnne Dodgson

Manaole U Manaole

Manaole U Manaole

The traditional greeting in the native language of the tribal peoples who live Ka Ta See is such a beautiful way to say hello:

Manaole U Manaole (mana ~ oh-l ~ oo ~ mana ~ oh-l)
(in English: from my heart to the heart of the mother earth to your heart)

Inside this greeting lives the description of an ancient way of life. These few words hold a universe of understandings of who we really are, how we are connected, and of the relationships we naturally weave. With every interaction. With every exchange. In every crossing of paths.

This heart-centered greeting is quite different than our common “How are you?” Though the question can be filled with caring, it’s often said while rushing on to the next thing. The person asking isn’t really listening for much more than a sound-byte response.

And the person who’s been asked is expected to share some sort of evaluation or news report about their life. The frequent “I’m fine” is often devoid of much feeling or truth.

Even our most fleeting interactions get distorted by facades, competition, seeking approval, and fears of what others might think.

Feel again into all that’s being expressed in this traditional greeting:
Manaole U Manaole ~ from my heart to the heart of the mother earth to your heart

What has touched me in learning this greeting is how our natural connectedness has nothing to do with determining who’s better or less, worthy of love or not.

With just a few words, in this heart-centered ‘hello,’ everyone is seen, honored and respectfully acknowledged. There is equity and harmony in the exchange. No need for news reports. No jockeying for power and approval. No questions and answers even have to be conjured up.

And our mother earth is understood to be an intimate companion, an integral participant, in every relationship we have.

So give it a try. Say the words out loud, if you’d like. For sure, say them on the inside. And feel the energy, the vibration, the medicine, in the words that you speak: from my heart to the heart of the mother earth to your heart.

Whether you are greeting
your neighbors,
your friends,
your lover,
the person ahead of you in line at the grocery store,
the trees and rocks,
the four-leggeds who live in your house,
the rivers and lakes,
the prickly plant or poisonous snake you give ample space as you walk by,
the people with political beliefs that are different than yours,
the soil beneath your feet,
the sun, moon and stars.

We’re reweaving our connections and changing the world (inside us and all around) one ‘hello’ at a time.



Share the Magic

Share the Magic

Recently, on my way to offer a ceremony in Santa Fe, I was pondering life in that roadtrip-state-of-mind kind of way. As I headed south through the river canyon, I reflected on where I am, where I’ve been, and what I’m seeking in my life.

And I reached out to my dad, who has been in spirit for a few years now, asking for some indication that I’m doing okay in finding my way through the passages of change.

I listened and watched, waiting for a sign, yet nothing in particular indicated a response. I didn’t feel my dad’s presence or sense any communication.

Spirits are not bound by the limitations and rush of our google-it-to-know, instant gratification, fast food world.

We had a beautiful ceremony. Afterwards, I stayed awhile talking with a friend. A woman and her dog stopped by the open door to the healing center. When I knelt down to greet the little four-legged, I heard the woman say, “His name is Mike.”

That’s my dad’s name too.


Keep sharing the magics. It’s so vital to see, feel and remember the beauty and magic that lives in our hearts, in our world, in our relationships, in life itself. Let this be what occupies our minds. And fills our conversations. And becomes our headline news.

Your stories are welcome here.

Manaole U Manaole,

from my heart to the heart of the mother earth to your heart,




Join My Book Give-Away

Join My Book Give-Away

Please join me in the Chocolate Book Give-Away!

For $5 to cover the shipping costs, you’ll receive a bundle of 5 books to share.

When you travel by train, plane, car, bicycle or bus, leave a copy of Spirit of Chocolate somewhere along the way. Leave in your local coffee shop. At the gas station pump. Tuck inside your neighbor’s mailbox. Place in the waiting room at the doctor’s office. Give to caretakers of nature centers. Share with teachers and healing practitioners. Bank Tellers. Park Rangers. Cashiers at the grocery store. Follow your inspirations!

Chocolate is heart-opening medicine. And stories are meant to be shared.


For online payment, click on this button:

If you prefer to pay by check, please send to: JoAnne Dodgson PO Box 323  Dixon, NM 87527

Be sure to include your mailing address to receive your bundle of 5 books.

Thank you for sharing the dream for weaving a world filled with harmony and love. ♥️

From Here to There

From Here to There

I cherished the pristine beauty, even after all these years, of Jasmine’s burial grounds beneath a tree in the wild lands. I’m not exactly sure what called me to visit on this particular afternoon, to step away from my insistent list of to-dos, from the social plans on my calendar, and from the unfinished and un-started projects still waiting.

Along the road to the red rock mesas, following the mystery of the calling, my sense of adventure was joined with sadness. A subtle yet present grief. My linear mind wanted to figure out the why of my emotions. My heart said: Just let it be.

I pondered the many changes I’ve been witnessing in people’s lives. Self-initiated changes. The ripple effect of others’ decisions. Changes that have come about suddenly. Changes that have unfolded through carefully mapped out plans. Each change requires the reweaving of personal webs of relationships, health, home, finances, work, and even dreams.

I pondered the many voices calling for broad, global, social changes. This too requires taking apart old webs and redesigning, rebuilding, the new.

I felt my hunger for the shiftings too.

So how do we make the journey from Here to There?

With any change, there will be letting go. A leaving behind. Something coming to completion, dying away. Something fulfilling it’s purpose, no longer needed. Like a snake shedding skins and trees dropping their leaves, the letting go opens space for growth and movement. Even though change is natural, in our human lives, we may feel grief. We may feel fear. We may awaken our sense of aliveness, creativity, freedom, and passion for the adventure.

Change can be understood as a passage through a doorway, moving over the threshold toward the mystery, and stepping into the new. And interestingly, once we take steps across the threshold, the mystery of where we were heading is no longer completely unknown. We have a taste of the new terrain. We touch the possibilities. We open our eyes to the universe of potentials that haven’t yet been explored.

When I was with Jasmine, my four-legged friend, as she found her way through her dying, one of the lasting gifts she shared was showing me there can be love in the leaving. Love carried her over the threshold from her canine existence into the Great Beyond. She was loved through her passage. She left a pathway of love in her living and in her dying. And she never stopped loving the world she left behind.

There can be love in the leaving. We can bring love into our passages from here (wherever we are) to there.

As I wandered the muddy mesas, I relished the hint of spring in the air. I circled back to visit Jasmine’s sacred site. Peace filled my heart. Comfort and connection. A deep inner quieting held in the expanse of wide-open horizons and brilliant blue skies.

Maybe this is why I had come. Maybe this is what called me here. The homecoming. The remembering. Leaving behind the shoulds, allowing space for the grief, opened all the more fully my heart.

I said my goodbyes and gave my offerings to Jasmine, to the rocks and the trees, to the nearby river, to all the wildly diverse beings who are part of my pack. And with love filling the leaving, I continued on my way.



What’s the Legacy You’re Leaving?

What’s the Legacy You’re Leaving?

When Osprey came into my life as a spirit guide, this magnificent river hawk kept asking me: What’s the legacy you’re leaving behind?

Osprey wasn’t talking about physical things – money, heirlooms, property – to be distributed after death. Judgments are often made about people’s worth at the time of their death and the value of their lives. Great importance is placed on the external and physical – what’s seen, accumulated, countable – while devaluing the energetic and internal. We’ve made up complicated laws, taxes, and courts which hold positions of power-over authority. There are winners and losers. Family feuds. Evaluations of who’s worthy of receiving something or not.

From the spirit’s perspective, we’re not understanding the whole of our legacy. We dismiss the riches of our inner worlds, the preciousness of the hard-to-hold-onto here and now, and the rippling effect we’re having. We’ve forgotten our influence as co-creators, as weavers of the web of life.

Osprey wants us to know: We’re leaving a legacy with every moment of our lives.

Though I’ve only crossed paths with Osprey in the wild a few times, the medicine of Osprey has flown directly into my life. Osprey’s question echoes through my mind, whispering in the winds and calling to my attention, in ordinary moments and unexpected circumstances.

I find myself asking what Osprey asked me: What’s the legacy I’m leaving behind?

…with the thoughts running through my mind;
…with how I’m feeling about myself, about others, about the news, about the future or the past;
…in how I’m relating with someone I just met;
…in conversations with friends, family, neighbors, clients;
…with choices I’m making about food, words, time, health, money;
…in how I’m finding my way through challenges and transitions;
…in how I’m in relationship with trees, rivers, land, birds, humans, ancestral spirits, and all those beings who I’ve never met.

Osprey’s question about my legacy calls me to pause, reflect, and take a closer look: How, in this moment, am I touching all life?

With fear?
With judgment?
With loving acceptance?
With stress and resentment?
With curiosity?
With awareness of connection and natural cycles?
With nourishment?
With shoulds?
With respect for uniqueness?
With acquiescing and giving in?
With lies?
With genuineness?
With humor and delight?
With appreciation and gratitude?

What, in this moment, am I weaving into the web of life? How am I giving and receiving? What are the patterns, the emotional and energetic imprints, the footprints and pathways, the potentials and possibilities that I’m sharing?

Is this something I want to continue? Is this the world I really want to create? Or is there something else that would be more in keeping with my purpose, my passions, my dreams, my heart?

Because the legacy I’m leaving is what I’m living right now.

Osprey calls us to remember our legacy is a choice we are making every minute. There’s interaction and relationship, giving and receiving, not just a one-way exchange.

How we are being – who we are being – weaves the world in the now and for the generations to come. And whatever is given and received physically after death is just icing on the (chocolate) cake.

Invite the medicine of Osprey into your life. Explore the universe of possibilities in this sacred quest: What’s the legacy you’re leaving behind – now? today?

And remember you have the power to choose.


Into the Mystery

Into the Mystery

We’re moving into a New Moon, an organic new beginning. Whoever we are ~ human, tree, ocean, bird, migrating whales, hibernating bear ~ and wherever we are on the earth, we’re touched by the shifts that this new cycle brings.

Moving into a new beginning involves opening to the mystery. We’re stepping into new territory. We’re awakening new possibilities.

Though beginnings and unknowns are a natural part of life, we’ve often learned to fear the mystery. It’s not okay not to know. We fail in school if we don’t have the answer. We’re a failure in life if we’re ever uncertain about the next step in our path. We’ve been trained to fear what’s beyond, out of sight, and not yet manifested. Even if what exists is uncomfortable, unhealthy, disturbing, or inauthentic, we work hard to keep everything in place. At least we have something to hold onto, something familiar and known.

Yet, what I’ve come to see is that in most of our lives there are ways we naturally seek out the mystery. We thrive in the adventure of exploring, creating, and being engaged in diverse kinds of transformation and change.

Painting on a blank canvas. Writing the first words of a story. Setting off on an open-ended road trip. Hiking through new lands. Spending time with a new friend. Planting a garden. Nurturing the growth of a child. Considering somebody else’s point of view. Making a meal or playing music. Being a midwife to births and deaths. Watching the night sky. Sharing more openly from the heart with family and friends. Visioning and dreaming, reaching beyond what is known into the realm of possibilities.

When and where are you drawn toward the mystery and unknowns? What comes alive in you?

What would it be like to remember this feeling when fears about the mystery are getting evoked?

New Moon offers us an invitation to befriend the mystery. To allow space for the not knowing. To take a deep breath and feel with fresh eyes the sweet aliveness of all that can be.

Welcome your curiosity, your hunger to experience and explore. Play around for awhile in the realm of possibilities which is so incredibly vast.

Remember you too are a piece of creation, creativity, a co-creator of life.

And when you are ready…dream new dreams for your life, for the earth, for all life.

Manaole U Manaole,

from my heart to the heart of the mother earth to your heart,




Unleashing Love

A Gift For You!

A Gift For You!

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