Overview Table of Contents Prologue Reader Reviews
Tailor-made rituals can give divorced people the ability to keep what they value from the relationship, let go of what was hurtful and be free to go on with life rather than staying stuck in bitterness or putting chidren in the middle of ongoing power struggles.
Overview Reader Reviews
A collection of 73 poems for all people, on claiming the legacy of our lives, exposing our illusions, and healing our hearts. Also Book on CD as Download = Set of 3 CDs.
Overview Reader Reviews
This chapbook includes four poems about the four seasons and their relationship to "the cycles of our lives." The combination of water color paintings, calligraphed poems, and Monza's poetic wisdom make Exultation "a modern tool for meditation in the ancient tradition of illuminated Books of Hours."
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Must We Say We Did Not Love?
The Need for Divorce Rituals in Our Time
In Must We Say We Did Not Love, you'll find moving stories while learning the steps for creating a wide range of "rituals," from the very simple to more involved, alone or with one or more others. These rituals offer people the ability to make successful transitions that allow them to identify and keep what they valued from the relationship during or after a divorce, let go of what was hurtful and be free to go on with life rather than staying stuck in bitterness. The rituals can be as simple as a letter and conversation between a step-dad and a son, or involve a whole family of parents and children.
Table of Contents
Prologue: Why I Am So Committed to Divorce Rituals—Monza' Personal Story
Reader Reviews for Must We Say We Did Not Love?
~ I perceive the practice of closure rituals to be the last crucial step in the psychological healing process. Dr. Naff is truly a gifted and brilliant expert. —Dr. Gisela Bergman, Licensed Psychologist
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~ Dr. Monza Naff’s writing is beautiful. It engages the heart with moving stories and the mind with a detailed structure for creating simple, yet profound rituals of transition during the process of divorce. It asks us to re-examine our beliefs about ritual and recognize the full potential of it’s power for healing. This book is invaluable for divorcing couples and their families. It also provides Collaborative Family Law Professionals essential tools and sage guidance with which to facilitate the deep peace and lasting agreements that earmark the highest potential of Collaborative Practice.
— Suzan Barrie Aiken, Collaborative Attorney and Mediator
~ In a society that privatizes loss, leaving people ritually empty and ignorant of the power of symbolic acts, I am in desperate need of resources that offer compassionate hope and healing. Dr. Naff recognizes this chasm of grief and brings her sensitive spirit and brilliant mind to the task of providing words and actions that allow people to ‘come full circle’ in their lives filled with change. I am grateful for this upcoming resource and will recommend it highly to my colleagues.
—Rev. Tiare L. Mathison-Bowie
~ In the collaborative practice community, we hold out the possibility that a couple can experience a dissolution process that is deeper, more profound and more meaningful than a mere settlement of their financial and parental rights. Dr. Naff invites us to offer our clients even more – sensitive, customized rituals to mark a life transition that can be more life-changing than those we traditionally have rituals for - births, marriages, and deaths.
Dr. Naff’s talent lies in creating a safe context that respects all the current feelings of each affected person. Whether the whole family participates, or each party creates their own separate ritual, each has the opportunity to honor the past, affirm the positive things that will continue, and set powerful intentions for the future. I believe that introducing our clients to the wisdom and mystery that ritual can offer will not only benefit them and their families, but will contribute to the healing and well-being of our greater community.
—Nancy J. Foster, J.D., Exec. Director of the Northern California Mediation Center, attorney, mediator, trainer and collaborative divorce attorney
Throughout my 25 years as a clinical psychologist in private practice I have been aware of the need for closure rituals. Once clients have worked through loss, abuse, trauma, or life passages, they need to take the steps of integration, transcendence, and, finally, closure.
Many of my clients have expressed the wish to share rituals with a group of loved ones or friends at the end of their therapeutic work in order to have witnesses to this final step, to be surrounded by a circle of compassion.
I perceive the practice of closure rituals to be the last crucial step in the psychological healing process. Because of this, I am delighted that Dr. Naff is writing a book about such rituals. Due to her wide range and depth of knowledge in the fields of counseling, retreat and ritual facilitation, ministry, public speaking, university teaching, and creative writing, Dr. Naff is truly a gifted and brilliant expert. Mental health professionals will profit greatly from this resource.
—Dr. Gisela Bergman, Licensed Psychologist
Comment from a Conference Attendee Who Heard Dr. Monza Naff Give a Keynote Based on Must We Say We Did Not Love?
"I recently had the opportunity to hear a presentation at the CPCal Celebration III by Monza Naff. Her presentation was titled "Must we say we did not love? Divorce Rituals to Complement and Complete a Collaborative Process." Monza spoke about the value in helping clients develop ritual for change for themselves and their children. I was honored to be present for her thoughtful presentation. Monza's style of presenting was warm and engaging. I found myself riveted during her speech. She provided a sense of hope for professionals working with clients at a difficult time in their lives. Her presentation was one of the highlights of the conference.
—Randy Cheek, Marriage and Family Therapist
Healing the Womanheart
Healing the Womanheart is a collection of poems about the three interwoven phases women undertake in the process of empowerment. First, claiming the legacy of all we have inherited and experienced. Second, exposing the illusions we have cherished or combated—from our culture, our families, and of our own making. Third, the intentional focused process and rituals for transformation and empowerment that heal the heart.
The three sections correspond to what Monza Naff believes are the major
phases in a woman's healing: first, we must claim all we have inherited
and experienced; then we need to expose the illusions our culture, our
families, and we ourselves have held onto; and, finally, intentionally
and carefully, we can heal our hearts through rituals, times of focused
attention, that transform and empower us.
As Monza Naff has given public readings from this work, women of all ages
and backgrounds resonate with its stories,
images, and candor, and they have spoken repeatedly of never before seeing
a collection of poems outline their own process of recovery and growth
at the same time it so clearly describes one woman's journey. While the collection focuses on women's experience, the themes are more universal.
This is a collection that will hold appeal both for people who love carefully
crafted poetry and people who are committed to personal growth.
Reader Reviews for Healing the Womanheart
Healing the Womanheart is for lovers of poetry who rejoice in
words woven with skills and precision, variety in form and wit. But since
all hearts have known wounds, the collection is for all of us even if
it should be the first book of poetry we own. Marjorie D. Lewis, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus, Texas Christian
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The kindest poetry a heart could imagine this
is indeed a book of healing.
Ursula K. Le Guin, Author
A work of courage, challenge and joy . . . In these poems Monza takes
up the inconsolable suffering of the world and transforms them into song. Mara Faulkner, OSB, Ph.D., Associate professor of English,
College of St. Benedict
Monza has a very big heart, so big it must burst open and like a flower
spread its seeds. This is the impulse behind her poems: the act of giving,
sharing, linking hands; imagining, and making believable, the kind of
life we would like to live. Mimi Khalvati, Director of the Poetry School in London
Exultation: A Poem Cycle in Celebration of the Seasons
This chapbook includes four poems about the four seasons and their relationship to "the cycles of our lives." Originally published in Monza's book, Healing the Womanheart, many people said they were so inspired by them that they should be "a book of their own." In response, Monza joined with artist, Katherine Witteman and calligrapher, Carol Erickson DuBosh to create Exultation. Most poems about the cycles of the seasons as metaphors for life start with Spring as a symbol of birth and end with Winter as a symbol of death. Monza starts with Fall and ends with Summer, translating the lessons we can learn from the seasons with profound vision, highlighting the gifts of healing and growth.
Fall ~ Letting go of what we no longer need
Winter ~ Accessing insight from the unconscious and letting it germinate
Spring ~ Breaking through the barriers to new growth
Summer ~ A time of growth, abundance, and fulfillment
The poems are lyrical, wise, honest, passionate and hopeful. Drawing upon Taoist principles, Monza Naff’s quartet shows us how to listen to what nature calls us to do in each season, how to process the struggle and find freedom. They go to the core of the recurring cycles in the life of the human spirit—humanity's seasons of despair and exultation, doubt and faith, fear and hope, death and life, those cycles all human know but often fail to honor.
Exultation can become a treasured little book for reading again and again, a resource for meditation, an exquisite gift for anyone in transition, marking a milestone, or committed to growth. The combination of water color paintings, calligraphed poems, and Monza's poetic wisdom make Exultation "a modern tool for meditation in the ancient tradition of illuminated Books of Hours."
Reader Reviews for Exultation
~ The poems of Exultation act as shofars to the soul, calling upon
us to remember: to feel, sense, know in our very beings that we are connected
through our cycles to all that is alive. Read these words aloud.
Chant, sing, intone them and experience a spirit that comforts and quiets,
uplifts and inspires all at the same time. This quartet is a masterpiece. Vicki Dello Joio, Chi Kung Master Teacher,
Founder of the Way of Joy
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~ The seasons perfecting the woman who prays, the woman who prays perfecting
the seasons these poems by Monza Naff inspire hope and humility
that reverberate in our senses like bell tones. Ann
Jauregui, Ph.D., Co-Founder of Marin Creek (Multidisciplinary Healing)
Center, and Faculty, School of Clinical Psychology, John F. Kennedy University
~ These poetic prayers express the classically tragic feeling of life,
that life moves toward both endings and new beginnings, toward death and
new life. Where Ecclesiastes saw that while there is time for all
things yet all is vanity and striving after the wind,
Naff sees within the transitoriness of life the promise of fulfillments
in the eternal now, until I recognize eternity in single breaths
. Glenn Routt, D.D.,Professor Emeritus of Theology,
Brite Divinity School
~ These poems of Exultation are the modern ode at its best and provide
a deep well of reassurance for all who hope for healing. Marjorie D. Lewis, Ph.D. Professor Emeritus, Texas
Exultation Audiobook Download:
Read by the Author with Guided Meditations
Audio Download: The Poems of Exultation
Read by Monza, with a meditation following each poem
(48 minutes — 14 tracks)
You can listen to Monza's exquisite reading of the four poems in Exultation, followed by a meditation she has created for each poem on the cycle, with the poem repeated once more at the end of the meditation.
The audio download of Exultation contains inspiring meditations
for each of the cycles we go through. While these cycles energetically
correspond to external seasons, they may occur at any time in our own
lives. They are cycles that involve: loss and letting go, hibernation
and deep internal contemplation, breaking through into a new cycle, and
feeling the fullness of life. Each of these meditations is a rich source
of inspiration and guide to both transitions and healing. (48 minutes — 14 Tracks)
Audiobook Download with meditations
for each poem $7.95
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NEW Audio Download!
Let Us Not Wish Away the Winter
Hear Monza Read the Winter poem from Exultation and interpret each stanza and the meaning it has for our lives. (40 minutes)
It calls us to glean the gifts from the wintry seasons of our emotional and spiritual lives. This presentation offers profound insights about the how the seeds for change can come from accessing the depth of our unconscious mind, heart and spirit.
Participant Comment: What an extraordinary opportunity to hear such a gifted writer share her achingly poignant poetry . . . Dr. Naff further illuminates her words by sharing with us the impetus for her writings and encourages us--the grateful listeners — to thoughtfully and patiently determine the meaning and impact of the words on our own lives. The insight, the imagery, the vision will change your heart for good. ~ DD