START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good

What the Animals Taught Me – Book Giveaway!

What the Animals Taught Me – Book Giveaway!

We are giving away a copy of What the Animals Taught Me: Stories of Love and Healing from a Farm Animal Sanctuary by Stephanie Marohn. Check out this excerpt and don’t forget to leave a comment for your chance to win the book!

Unconditional Love Lesson #10:
Every Moment Is a Sanctuary

The heart of the healer is a four-chambered heart, says Angeles Arrien. It is not enough to have an open heart. For health and healing in all realms of body, mind, and spirit, the heart must be full, clear, and strong as well.

My heart gives a leap of joy when I greet an animal. My heart jumps in joy to meet the heart of that animal. I feel my four-chambered heart open, full, clear, and strong. It could not be that way if the animals had not taught me how to create a sanctuary within. With an inner sanctuary, my sight is the vision of my heart, which, heedless of accepted practice, guides me to ever more openness, strength, fullness, and clarity.

With an inner sanctuary, we welcome ourselves home in each moment of our lives. With an inner sanctuary, we can create sanctuary everywhere we go.

The Animal Messenger teachings revealed to me the true meaning of sanctuary: a place to feel safe, a place where one can be completely oneself, a place of supported independence, a place to live and die in peace, a place of deep connection on a heart and spirit level, a place of love, honor, and respect for all beings.

With an open, strong, full, and clear heart, we can create sanctuary in every moment of our lives. Welcoming each moment, we walk the Way of Welcome and extend sanctuary to everyone we meet, offering a place of peace even in a passing interaction. You might think it is exhausting to walk through your days bringing love to every moment, but it is actually energizing. What saps our energy is the energy it takes to try to ignore the pain of the world and to shut off the connection that is our natural way. If we meet the world with love in our hearts—and a silent communication of caring takes only a second—we return home feeling stronger from the moments of acknowledgment that we are all connected.

In the Way of Welcome, in the unconditional love of the full, open, clear, and strong heart, we bring love and respect to all our relationships. A traditional Lakota Sioux prayer begins “Mitakuye Oyasin,” translated variously as “All my relations” or “All my relatives” or “We are all related,” an acknowledgment that all elements of the natural world are connected, that every tree, rock, plant, animal, person, insect, bird, frog, snake, and so on is our relation.

In passing each heated stone into the sweat lodge for sacred ceremony, the fire keeper says, “Mitakuye Oyasin,” in recognition of the stone people. Those praying in the lodge often begin and end their prayer with the phrase, honoring all our relations and the oneness of all. Some people use it as a sign-off in letters and emails. I say it in thanks to the moment because, when I am welcoming the moment, I am feeling one with all creation. “Aho Mitakuye Oyasin,” I say, in gratitude for the beautiful world around me and for the joy of living life with the Animal Messengers.

All my relations.

Reprinted with permission from Red Wheel/Weiser, LLC, What the Animals Taught Me by Stephanie Marohn is available wherever books and ebooks are sold or directly from the publisher at

WIN THE BOOK! Enter a comment below and you will automatically be entered to win a copy of What the Animals Taught Me by Stephanie Marohn. Winner will be announced on March 20 (winner will be notified via Care2 profile). Good luck!


Mandi A.

Winner: Please email Samantha at to claim your new book. Thanks to everyone who entered!

Read more: Contests & Giveaways, Nature, Nature & Wildlife, Pets,

have you shared this story yet?

go ahead, give it a little love

Healthy Living Editors

Healthy Living offers more than 10,000 ways for you to improve your life, your home, your community, and even the world. From the latest healthy and green news to simple DIY tips, our informative and inspirational content empowers you to make a difference.


+ add your own
5:41AM PDT on Sep 4, 2012


7:10PM PDT on May 13, 2012

Giveaway's over, think I'll buy it :)

6:19AM PDT on May 13, 2012

Excellent Book! It sounds amazing!

5:36PM PDT on Apr 27, 2012

Just noticed "Winner will be announced on March 20 ."

Congratulations on your new book Mandi A! (Can I borrow it when you're done reading it?)

5:33PM PDT on Apr 27, 2012

Intriguing book ... Pick me! Pick me! Pick me!

6:00PM PDT on Apr 17, 2012

Aaahhh to be more in tune!

7:07AM PDT on Apr 15, 2012

I love the animals. I never miss an opportunity to interact with or read about the animals, any animals. I hope that I am learning the lessons they teach, but would love to win this book, too! Thank you!

1:17PM PDT on Apr 8, 2012

thank you

8:13PM PDT on Apr 7, 2012

I need to get a hold of this book for sure.Animals are indeed my passion!!

3:12PM PDT on Mar 26, 2012

Yay! So excited! Thank you again!

add your comment

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are solely those of the author and may not reflect those of
Care2, Inc., its employees or advertisers.

people are talking

Thank you for sharing

I have always wanted to start learning yoga and someday plan to do that. We all know not to over-do …

I have never really followed all of these rules and I have always had thriving houseplants. I guess …


Select names from your address book   |   Help

We hate spam. We do not sell or share the email addresses you provide.

site feedback


Problem on this page? Briefly let us know what isn't working for you and we'll try to make it right!