The underlying connection between the various donuts, representing the different facets of my work, is my deep love and respect for Mother Gaia and for our magnificent Universe. My intention is to help awaken and sustain a sense of wonder and reverence for life as we journey through our time of immense "breakdown and breakthrough."
My work embraces Thomas Berry's and Brian Swimme's notion that we are at a crossroads where a new "Ecozoic Era" can emerge. The Ecozoic Era comes about as humans recognize their role in creating and maintaining attitudes, policies and behaviors that are mutually beneficial to the planet and to us.
My dad once had a company that had a group called the "MBA: Mutual Benefit Association." I'm an advocate of us creating an MBA in all aspects of our lives! As we recognize that all life is sacred and interconnected, we can design our human activity from a perspective of mutual enhancement rather than domination and “scare-city.” Care and conscious regard for the effects of our actions on other humans, other species and the very Earth herself can displace callous indifference as we realize that matter is a living presence rather than lifeless, inert "stuff" for us to manipulate and control for exclusive human ends. All my "plork" (combination of play and work, a term I didn't create but love) has its source in gratitude for the great gifts of life and a desire to deepen our appreciation of these gifts by furthering creativity, joy, beauty, love and celebrating the unfolding of the Cosmos.
The Holographic Donuts is the name of my musical publishing company and band. I incorporate the music from my first CD, "Mother EARth Calls," in my presentations. I have numerous other original songs that I also love to share. Songs began coming to me in 1981 but it was not until 1994 that I dared share them with anyone. I was convinced that I "had a bad voice" but realized the songs had to be sung if they were to be shared!
I was joined by wonderful friends who formed our first "batch of donuts" and birthed the songs into the world. This launched me on a journey of moving through my fears to discover my voice, my courage and to dispel the false "spell" set on me in third grade when I was the only one out of twenty nine students not to be accepted into the glee club!
I must acknowledge my teachers Amy Fradon, Julie Parisi-Kirby and Daniel Woerner who have been powerful allies and friends, guiding me throughout this process. I can once again sing with the joy and enthusiasm that I felt as an eight year old and I am deeply grateful for this healing.
Eco-Astrology: Awakening & Awareness utilizes the ancient methodology of astrology to assist in understanding life cycles. The advances in modern cosmology, physics and biology affirm the interconnections between what was previously thought to be separate. From the perspective of one living universe, astrology no longer seems so esoteric or strange. Years of practice have shown me over and over that this ancient tool can help people in self-acceptance, relationships and in the recognition of their "calling" and challenges.
I especially love working with groups and young people and find Eco-astrology a way to discover how the universal archetypes and the powers of the Universe live within us and can foster community, harmony and appreciation of the gifts and opportunities of self and others.
Earth Is My Cathedral is the name of my green, inter-faith ministry. No matter what religion we follow we all share the same home - our precious Earth. I welcome opportunities to visit your sanctuary and to share “Earth-Gospel” songs and stories that celebrate our Earth and each other. We are all part of the human family. Our focus is mutual appreciation that embraces both our differences and our unity. I concur with the Dalai Lama in his statement that his primary religion is kindness.
My calling into an interfaith approach to spirituality began early. I was born into a family with a Jewish father, Christian mother and was raised by an Afro-American with a deep faith who was a living embodiment of love. I went to a Quaker school and became a student of Tibetan Buddhism, Vedanta and Siddha Yoga. In a three year Human Capacities Program with Drs. Jean Houston, Gay Luce and Robert Masters, we studied the major spiritual traditions in depth. While working at Omega Institute I was able to attend many workshops with outstanding spiritual teachers, shamans and visionaries.
A-MUSE-IN’-EXPRESS: Mystery School on Wheels
In 1995 I had the opportunity to host a radio show that I called “A-MUSE-IN-EXPRESS,” which was dedicated to the emergence of planetary awareness. I was fortunate to have many cutting-edge teachers and visionaries on the show. I’ve found that one of my primary classrooms in the 21st Century is within the confines of my car where I listen to recordings of profound teachings! I wish to add to the library by transcribing these tapes into CDs.
I still have a few audio-tapes of interviews with Father Thomas Berry and Dr. Jean Houston available and hope to be able to offer CDs in the near future.
EARTHARTISTRY: ELEMENTary Education for the Ecozoic Era. Education is a primary way we are shaped and/or shape our world. We are in an era unprecedented in its challenges and opportunities. It is not enough to be educated to “fit in” to a work force. As we transition out of the industrial age into an integral, planetary era, we need a new educational format to allow us to unfold our potentialities and genius.
My vision is education based on the natural elements of Space, Fire, Air, Water and Earth. We need to learn how to listen, to be, to feel, to sense, to create, to be joyful, playful and engaged in the learning process. We are not an empty storage tank to be stuffed with information but rather like flowers, whose intelligence is within. We unfold best when our environment recognizes our genius and provides us what we need to grow and blossom. We also learn how not to be overly dependent on the immediate conditions of our life and to tap into our powers of imagination and ingenuity to create what has not yet manifested. Visionary poet and artist William Blake put it this way: “What is now proved was once only imagin’d.”
Earthartistry embraces “The Universe Story” as related by cultural historian Thomas Berry and cosmologist Brian Swimme. We also incorporate the ZERI fables by Gunter Pauli, the work of the ZERI organization and Esther’s original songs, poems and stories, to provide young and old with the opportunity to learn how science and art complement each other in the joy of learning and to bring about design breakthroughs that are mutually enhancing to humans and to the earth community.
The work of Drs Jean Houston, Gay Luce and founder of the Wisdom University, Matthew Fox, have also been a big influence on the vision of Earthartistry. My unconventional educational experience, beginning in a one-room school house and including the receiving of a BA from Antioch College in San Francisco continues into the present. I love to learn and welcome any opportunity I can get to expand and deepen my awareness.
Esther Frances is an interfaith minister, a singer/songwriter, eco-astrologer, writer and author of The Anatomy of Woodstock. She is a graduate of Antioch College, San Francisco, a certified practitioner of Jean Houston's Three-Year Program in Human Capacities, Dream Change Coalition's Shapeshifting: Into the Ecstatic You and Your Mission, Gunter Pauli's ZERI Foundation, Robert Master's Psychophysical Method Exercises, Amy Fradon's Vocal Visionary Training, Permaculture Institute's Design Course, Hospice Volunteer Training, Advanced Vortex Healing, Yuen Method Full Spectrum Healing and has completed two weekends of Sacred Activism: Hope in the Darkness with Andrew Harvey. She was astrologer in residence at Omega Institute in Rhinebeck, NY from 1997-2005. Her first CD of original songs, Mother EARrth Calls was released July 2005. The entire collection of songs can be sampled at cdbaby.com.