Tag Archives: California

October Angels in Germany – A Taste of Eternity becomes A Scent of Angels

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It has been a long road, the one that leads to Eternity… and to Germany. I feel so blessed in both cases, and am blessed yet again in the month of October.

 Book CoverIt was in October 1999 that I had my Taste of Eternity, which lead to my wanting to write and publish my book about sharing the beauty I know awaits us in Heaven. Three years later in 2002 in October I was blessed, again, to be able to compete in the Dublin Marathon, to also be one of the top fundraisers in the US for the American Diabetes foundation.

Now finally… I am blessed, yet again in the month of October. This time that blessing comes in the form of my book making its debut. The title has changed, the language has changed, but it is going to market at The Frankfurt book fair, the world’s largest book fair. The title has changed from “A Taste of Eternity” to “Der Duft des Engels” which translates to “The Fragrance (or the Scent) of Angels”. So it will be on the wings of Angels that I fly to Frankfurt in 2 days on October 14th, 2015.

There are thousands, if not hundreds of thousands of authors who wish they would have their book printed in a foreign language, or make it to print at all. I am one of those very lucky few, that not only will achieve this, but it will be to release my first book. I feel like a southern bell making her Debut at the big ball. I want to dance and twirl and sing out loud I’m so pretty, I’m so pretty but really changing the words to I’m so lucky, I’m so lucky. Twirling just the same.Frankfurt City PIC

Please don’t think that the coincidence of all these wonders of good fortune happening in October is lost on my blonde California head. I accept that we are not the ones in control of our fates. I do completely believe that these gifts were a blessing from above. While reading a review on the book festival in Publishers Weekly, I had to take pause because there was a paragraph, which spoke directly to me. Now as I pack my bags to fly to Germany for this live time event, I do take pause, and review all the wonders of this life. I wanted to share this with you.

{Frankfurt Book Fair 2015: A New Era Begins.  Welcome to the 2015 Frankfurt Book Fair—and publishing’s next act}

Whether you’re hurrying from meeting to meeting or just wandering the halls, try to pause for a moment to take it all in. Publishing has entered a new era. And the conversation is no longer about print or digital, Kuyper says—it is about meeting the needs of the consumer.

Frankfurter Buchmesse, a.k.a. the Frankfurt Book Fair; Vibrant, Inspiring Memories and Discoveries

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Books create worlds and new ideas. They help to shape our society and its values.

My desire in writing my book A Taste of Eternity is to do just that: I want you to experience (as much as a book will allow) my view of the Love I experienced and which is offered to each of us in Heaven.

Now, I get to do it halfway around the world, when A Taste of Eternity makes its worldwide reveal at the Frankfurter Buchmesse, a.k.a. the Frankfurt Book Fair, one of the three largest in the world.

I can’t believe my lucky stars that this is the place of my book’s debut! The Frankfurter Buchmesse takess center stage of Frankfurt every October (October is an auspicious month. My accident that led to my taste of Eternity happened in October 1999, and I completed a 26.2-mile full marathon in Ireland three years later — after being told I would spend my life in a wheelchair). Located on the banks of the river Main, with its skyscrapers intermingling with the historic part of town, it is often jokingly called “Mainhattan”.Frankfurt City PIC

The most famous son of the city by far is novelist, playwright, poet and philosopher Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, who was born there in 1749. During his lifetime, Goethe wrote the equivalent of 140 books 400-pages long (a task now fully appreciated). His protégé, Rudolf Steiner, established the education philosophy we know today through the Waldorf Schools. Now, Goethe’s legacy is preserved by the book fair.

The Fair is a vibrant publishing landscape, Dynamic! It’s international, interactive and inspiring. The gathering place for the Who’s Who of publishing — publishers, agents, film producers, booksellers, and authors! It’s clearly the most important marketplace for books, media, rights and licenses worldwide. The industry comes together to create something new.

         More than 7,000 exhibitors are expected from over 100 countries. Frankfurter Buchmesse will be home to publishers from Asia, the Arab world, Australia, Canada, France, Greece, India, Iran, Ireland, Israel, Italy, Latin America, Netherlands, New Zealand, Portugal, Scandinavia, Spain, Southeast Europe, Turkey, UK, and the USA.Frankfurt PiC  Having my Book debuted there offers the opportunity not only wished for by authors worldwide but hopefully (I pray) will give me an opportunity to expand my network, build bridges into the future, and make new memories and discoveries.

I promised God, and my ‘Pop’s” Ray Brookhart that I would write this book. They asked me to share all the memories I could layout there, describing the Divinity of Heavens Colors on my empty white pages. Feeling guided all the way, God has made this Heaven sent.

The Dead Sea Scrolls, Angels, and the Ten Commandments.

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USC Trojan PICLA Times Festival of Books 2015 -PIC Dead Sea Scrills PIC

We hopped across the street to the California Science Center from the Campus of USC, where I was talking with writers and publishers at the LA Times Festival of Books.

On display were The Dead Sea Scrolls, the oldest copies of the Hebrew Bible, also known as the Old Testament. They are written in Hebrew, Aramaic and Greek. Greek is the predominant language due to nearby Ancient Greece. The Essenes are the sect regularly identified as the Dead Sea Community. The Community had Rules one of them was “All who submit freely to His truth will convey all their knowledge, their energies, and their riches to the community of God.” The Dead Sea Scrolls original writers and copyists considered Jerusalem polluted and profane. They lived secluded, austere lives of piety, and were the founders of the Essene religion (secret order to which Jesus belonged)

The Scrolls were written mostly on parchment, with some written on papyrus. They’re incredibly important documents. They are central to the belief system for Christians, Muslims, and Jews. Wow who’d a thunk it…  that they had so much in common?

The story goes in 1947 a Bedouin shepherd, tossed a rock into a cave and heard a pot shatter, which led to the recovery of more than 900 scrolls. They date between 150 BCE and 70 CE. The traveling “Dead Sea Scrolls” exhibit featured more than 600 ancient artifacts, including selections from 10 scrolls, housed in low light and dry conditions similar to the caves near Khirbet Qumran, where they were preserved for 2,000 years. The Dead Sea is the lowest point on Earth (1,400 feet below sea level).Getty Museum- PIC

I had some favorites, first was the song of Sabbath Sacrifice. These 13 songs were for the first 13 weeks of the Sabbath each year. Yeah now we are talking, these songs were songs of angelic praise, angelic priesthood, and heavenly temple, which gave the community’s sense of engaging in a common worship with angels.  The Scroll known as the Angelic scroll, is apparently loaded with Jewish mystical imagery, and descriptions of angels. It is potentially more important than any of the other scrolls so far examined, and is thought to be around 2000 years old. The text describes a ‘tour of the heavens’ undertaken by its author in the company of an angel named ‘Pnimea‘. The author of the Angel Scroll is taken on a journey where he is shown the “secrets of the universe.” He is taught to contemplate signs in the sun and the stars and through them forecast events. To notice the signs in the raging waves of the sea, and in the clouds of the heavens, and how to use medical plants and stones to cure disease and predict the future.

This was amazingly similar to what I was shown when I had my review.  It was almost eerie to read such a straightforward guideline so close to how I feel when I’m walking in nature, along the beaches of Carlsbad, where the majestic energy and strength of the Ocean can be overwhelming.

My personal favorite is: “a vision was revealed to me from the Most High, and Pnimea, Prince of Angels lifted me up in spirit and I ascended Heavenward above the high places of the clouds, and he showed me the great world and the image of the gods. And I pondered the appearance round about and there was no time and no place and their appearance from the dwelling places of light was like a rainbow in the clouds.”images-25

Well needless to say WOW…when I read a description like this and knowing it is nearly 2000 years old, I feel its descriptions chill me to the core, because it is so similar to what I saw and knew during my Taste of Eternity – it makes me feel normal. No I’m not crazy, I did have a normal experience with and Angel. My Guardian Angel and so have others, even way back than 2000 years ago.Angel- PIC

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The difference between a writer and an Author? A Book contract

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March 26th 2015

Today was a momentous day for me. I signed my book contract with Sorriso Verlag to have my book A Taste of Eternity published in German. It is set to come out this Holiday Season. I am so delighted to have my book represented and published by them.

Sorriso smile

The publishing company name alone was enough to draw me in. Sorriso is the Italian word for “smile”. This company consists of strong, highly experienced women that combine years of unbelievable creative talent. Their focus is to have all their books deliver what the company name implies… a smile. They want to uplift, motivate, encourage and bring overall joy to their readers. Which is why they acquired A Taste of Eternity: to bring a smile to its readers.

This has been a long road.  I have not blogged for awhile, because I felt and recognized such a negative backlash from publishers and readers questioning the authenticity of Dr. Eben Alexander’s NDE, or the authenticity of anyone’s NDE. Why is it we have so much trouble accepting experiences that range outside our five physical sentences? There simply was not a market for my book for the past past year and a half.

When asked what I thought after reading Alexander’s book, I first replied that there was much I could not relate to, since I am not a neuroscientist or medical doctor. I do relate to the time in my seven-week coma, and a few spots very much like my NDE experience.

However, I sometimes had a hard time determining which were his authentic NDE experiences, and which were experiences he had while in his coma. Furthermore, Dr. Alexander was never officially pronounced dead. I agree that each of us have our own unique NDE experiences, just as we each have our own experiences in life.

Over my whopping 56 years, I’ve noticed that every step, experience, encounter, and basically everything in life happens in order to prepare us for the next step.  There are no accidents. Knowing this is my belief; after a year of no interest in any books on NDE’s, I’m certain you can understand how I saw this delay, not as upsetting but rather as scripted by the heavens, which ultimately led to this publisher wanting my book. I see it as a completely guided direction.

The fact that a company that carries the happy, sunny name of “Smile,” will now publish my book, and its desire to encourage and uplift women, is more than meets the eye. The publisher, Karen Christine Angermayer, was working and vacationing in Southern California, looking for books from American authors. She was made aware of my book and given my proposal and four chapters; within three days, we were Skyping. After telling me how much she liked my writing, she asked for a complete manuscript within six weeks. (If you’ve never tried to publish a book, trust me, this is sweet music to the ears!) A week later, after she returned to Germany, the first version of my contract arrived.

This unique synchronicity was not lost on me.

Today, I get to fulfill the promise I made to God in 2000, and to my wonderful father Ray Brookhart a year later: I would share what I experienced through this book. I would relay His teaching” The most important thing we can do on Earth is to Give, Show, and Express Love. There is no greater accomplishment.Blog Angel - contract

Love is not just for people. Every body and living thing is made up of essentially the same energy, particles, and spirit matter. Look into the eyes of every creature, your pet cat, or a wild tiger. Take a detailed account of every mother-infant relationship, every friendship, every co-existence, every spirit, and you will see the need and desire for love. Love knows no boundaries! While having my life review and visit with God in Heaven, I saw that everything in life is connected and all things have a full life inside them – a kaleidoscope of color, light, love and praise.

Today my heart is full of this kaleidoscope of color, love, and happiness. I give praise that I was able to write and complete this book.

I certainly did not do it alone. I had friends who encouraged me in more ways than they know. They encouraged me to walk, run marathons, work, and accomplish so many tasks that aided in my resolve to write a book about my NDE. They helped me become brave enough to go public with my thoughts and experience, something that, in subjects like this, often lead to direct criticism — the opposite of what A Taste of Eternity is about.

Again there are no accidents in life. Just when I needed it, my life was gifted with the arrival, loving guidance and writing direction of Robert Yehling, a friend of fifty years who has written and edited many books through his Word Journeys business. For the past four years, Bob and I moved through every aspect of this book, shaping and molding my experiences into final form while sharing all the loving and spiritual or emotional energy behind it. It took several drafts and a few “back to the drawing board” moments, but we got there with a wonderful, final six-week writing spree this past winter. Bob acted as my cheerleader, coach, and fan. Without his help, I would not be able to say I am an author.

Blog Beach Chairs contract

Author… l’il old me? Wow. I cannot believe the energy that fills me, rushing up and down my spine. I want to cry, laugh, smile, and scream out in joy.

Today, after dropping my signed contract in the mail, I went body surfing with a good friend. We laughed and played in the ocean, floating in the calm of the Ocean and I could not get this stupid smile off my face. It was sheer ecstasy!!! I wanted to fly away, floating in the sparkling sun as it shined on the waves. I’m sure when I hold my first copy in my hands that smile will be just as hard to remove as it was today. I will experience this Bliss again. I love all the people in my life and remember daily God’s guiding premise: The Most Important Thing We Can Do On Earth is – To Give, Show, and Express Love. There is no greater accomplishment.

Now, I will get to share His love through A Taste of Eternity.

Writing about hard events and life challenges can be FUN.

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A Story of Change can be fun.

Writing about your past trials in life can certainly be taxing. It’s often difficult to re-live the physical pain I had to pass through and overcome. As I write more of my memoir, I have to view my writing as if I have no ego, or rather to say that ego is a part of doing this. That’s OK. I have to face my story, of a life that did not turn out to be the perfect dream I wanted it to be. It sometimes saddens me, but yet with a high degree of certainty I accept, that I will laugh, I will cry, I will love, and I will unreservedly share all that I am, the good and the bad.

Writing about these life challenges can also be FUN.  Life is whatever perspective I choose.

festival of books3This past week was one of those FUN kid-like moments. We went to the Los Angeles Times Festival Of Books.  This two-day event brings in 150,000 people. The Festival    is a true wonderland for writers, editors, agents, publishers and, most of all, readers who enjoy a good story.  I was completely amazed with all the booths from companies, groups, and of course individual writers selling their books.

The day began by entering the massive property of the USC campus.

We arrived early, anticipating the parking hassle that comes with a huge crowd.  Thankfully we got there early enough, hah… more than an hour before it began.  We drove right into what we thought was an optimum close-up parking space.  Ooops – it was the LA Coliseum parking lot – not the closest. Luckily, it wasn’t too far away.

With all this spare time, and the California sunshine streaming down, we set off to investigate and explore the grounds.   The place is full of museums (that weren’t open yet), architecturally wonderful buildings, and lovely manicured grounds. We walked around a corner and found ourselves at The Rose Garden – what a garden it is!  The central focus was a fantastic spouting fountain shooting straight into the air.  This garden is organized; each select variety of rose was noted, many of them towering over my six-foot height. These puppies have been around a long time.  The rows of differently colored roses are grafted out from this central point in what I’d estimate to be about two acres of land. Buildings that have a palace look to their architecture flank each end of the garden.IMG_7243

Remember, USC is the breeding ground of many of the film industry’s most noted art directors, visual effects artists, directors, and stars. No need to fly off to foreign lands to get that effect; we are in the land of make believe.

We wandered about as though within our own secret garden, no crowd yet. I breathed in and out, enjoying the freshness of the day. IMG_7232

One of the stunning buildings flanking this garden is The Library, a place where my dad spent many hours in the mid-1970s.  I’m reminded that starting life over again, starting from scratch runs in the family.  My Dad went back to college on this campus when he was about the same age I am today.  He came to USC to get his degree in Librarian Science.

IMG_7254As I look at this beautiful building, I can visualize him happily entering its hallowed hallways, happy as a kid in a candy store.  I giggle to myself, how proud my Pop’s would be of me, knowing I’m here and working on writing a book, my book.  Books to him were the key to life itself.  They did every thing you wanted, and could travel the world without leaving the comfort of your own special chair.  His mind traveled many lands, experienced many adventures, and embraced many romances via the white pages pinned between two leather bound walls.

It strikes me… thinking of my dad…how things change and we change with them. It’s up to use to decide how we choose to accept the change, either with an open heart and eyes, or to close ourselves to it.

A Higher Purpose: Not Fearing Death Part 2

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A Higher Purpose: Not Fearing Death Part 2 of Interview with ‘A Taste of Eternity’ Author Martha Halda

This is the second of a touching, life-affirming two-part interview with Martha, which comes at a most fitting time, as millions begin to celebrate Easter or Passover.

Word Journeys: Why do so many people find it hard to believe someone can have a near death experience, taste eternity, or have direct perception of God?

Martha Halda: I feel it’s because we are too busy judging.  Judgment causes the unbearable fear of non-acceptance.  Think about it, from our first day on the playground, all we want is to be accepted, to be part of the group, invited in.  Some people can’t accept what they haven’t seen, touched or felt themselves. Some need science to prove anything or everything before they will accept it, Often, people are afraid that society will think them odd or mentally off.  To talk about this, I needed the faith that comes from knowing that what I experienced was 100% real.   Faith can go a long way, but first we must to get out of our own way. We need to remove the mighty ego.  Many people still need society to accept it, before they are willing.

WJ: That’s a great point – and leads to my next question. A Taste of Eternity crosses all religious lines – and goes beyond them. When I read it, I saw how you touched and experienced the unifying point behind ALL religions. Could you speak to the essence of spirit, based on your experience?

MH: For me, the essence of spirit is sharing, caring, love, a unity of all things.  I mean all things: everything is energy, it is all particles or atoms or cells, and they are all part of each other.  During my experience, at one point, I had a mental vision or thought that a waterfall would be nice; suddenly, particles from all over a meadow came together and re-formed as a waterfall.  It was as if everything existed to bring pleasure.

 

WJ: Three years after your accident, after being told you would never walk again, you completed the Dublin Marathon. How did the marathon intensify your desire to live life to the max, without fear of what may or may not happen next?  

MH: I know that any day could be my last. When it’s my time, then it’s my time, I have no fear of death; in fact, I welcome the day.  I won’t do anything to bring it on myself, because I want to be sure I get to go to Heaven again, and I don’t want to feel the hurt I would cause my friends.

WJ: How does your family view your experience now, compared with how they first responded to it?

MH: They don’t really view it differently at all.  We don’t talk about it much.  It may have changed their views of life indirectly, but it is a personal thing.  I feel they have a beauty inside their souls knowing that God is there for each of us, and there is no reason to fear death.

WJ: How did your life purpose change from your experience?

MH: Today, I don’t know if I really have one, in the traditional way. I used to have a very clear purpose as a mother. Now, it is just to see life in all things with joy. I want to understand how and why religions say their way is the only right way; the loving embrace of the God I met was not that condemning.  I feel if people would open their hearts and minds to another’s way, they would see the commonality in our beliefs, customs, and lifestyles, and not the differences.

WJ: You came back with heightened senses, one of which is a particular affinity with animals, which you discuss in the book. Could you elaborate?

MH: I just look into the eyes of birds, dogs, cats, birds or deer and can tell if they are happy and well or not.  They don’t fear me, and some will become very assertive toward me in a good way. They know they are safe with me.  That’s all.  When you bring this up, I get the opportunity to feel the way some of the people in my life felt about me talking about my near death experience – shoosh! someone might hear you. (laughs)

WJ: When people read books like A Taste of Eternity, or talk with you about it, what would you like them to take away from the experience?

MH: Simply the Golden Rule: Do unto others as you would have done unto you.  To give, share, and express love; it’s the most important thing we have to offer! Love is the only Eternal possession we have. When we die, the only thing we take is the love we shared, the memories we make, and our integrity. Everything else stays here.  No U-Hauls in Heaven.

WJ: Finally, last year on your birthday, you did something not a lot of 50-somethings would do: jumped off a 50-foot cliff into the Ganges River near Varanasi, India – not once, but several times.

MH: Well, I was also the only high school girl skateboarder in the mid-1970s who bombed the steep La Costa hills in Carlsbad (Calif.), where I grew up! So it’s not that much of a departure for me. It was a spur-of-the-moment thing. I’d been white-water rafting all morning with two young ladies from Scotland who were also go-for-it women. I saw the cliffs, told our guide to beach the raft, walked past some Indian men who were thinking about it but were afraid to jump … and I stepped in front of them and jumped. I laugh every time I close my eyes and see the looks on their faces! It was one of those extraordinary moments. I’m always ready for them.