Lynne Serafinn | The Garden of the Soul
October 6, 2009
Dr. Kent: Welcome back to Dr. Kent and friends. As they say on the little announcement, this is Sound Authors, and my next guest on the show is Lynne Serafinn, and she’s written a book called The Garden of the Soul: Lessons From Four Flowers That Unearth the Self. She’s a best seller in the UK with this book, and I’m excited to talk to her about it. Welcome to the show, Lynne.
Lynne Serafinn: Hi there, Dr. Kent. Thank you for having me today.
Dr. Kent: Absolutely. Well let’s talk about this book. Tell me a little about it.
Lynne Serafinn: Ok, it actually made, it squeaked into the bestseller list in the United States as well, in the Self Help category. It was, here in the UK it was in the Spirituality and Mind, Body, Spirit categories as well. It’s actually a book of my own personal transformation. It uses metaphors of the four flowers to represent different aspects of the self that are parts of us that need to bloom in order to be whole people. They’re aspects that unfolded for me as I went through my own transformation. People always tell me, “How did you think them up?” I didn’t, they kind of found me.
Dr. Kent: And what is it like for you, the process of writing a self-help book? I’ve often heard that it’s a real transformative process for the person writing as well.
Lynne Serafinn: Yes, that’s true. Well, I never intended to write a self-help book. I just wanted to write. And actually I was writing lots of little stories for many years, like really short stories. I called them vignettes. And they were like, you know, I’d go somewhere and I’d see something and I always see metaphors in things. I see metaphors in real life things. In the book for instance, I’ve used the metaphor swinging on a swing as a child for being stuck in a situation holding onto the chains and not letting go of (inaudible), not being able to fly. Or I watch the river quite a lot here in Bedford, I lived in England, too, you may not know from my accent, but my accent kind of floats in and out, but I lived in Britain. I’m American, but I’m also British, I’m dual citizen, and I lived here for ten years. So anyway, by the river, I might watch the river and see things in that that makes me think about life. And just different metaphors that hit me. But the process of writing a self-help book never came into the picture at all. But one day I literally just woke up and I had written a fairy tale some years before that was quite spontaneous and I didn’t quite know what to do with it, in which these four flowers had appeared. And the four flowers were the rose, the iris, the daffodil and the lily, and I kind of sensed that they had something to do with personality and self and being a whole person, but I didn’t know exactly what. And then about two and a half years ago I just woke up literally woke up in bed one morning and I said, Well, I understand this emotionally and on a personal level. You know, I could type metaphorically what they represent. And what they came to represent were the four principles of give, receive, become and be. And I found that they’re very rich principles, because they’re not quite as straightforward as just giving and receiving, that one might think that you give to somebody and you get back. It’s not like that, giving, for instance, I won’t go into them that deeply, but giving, for instance, is anything that comes out from you. Like personal expression. Life purpose, drive, courage, boldness, all these things that come out from you that are like an arrow coming out. That’s giving. And then receiving is being really open, really aware, it’s about holding your senses open so that you can see opportunity, you can appreciate and you can feel all of the things around you. You can see the gift in every moment. So to flow between the two become a balancing act, it’s how we interact in the world. And becoming and being our symbolic (inaudible), a chance to change and growth and expansion. And from that also means letting go and rebirth. And being is the opposite, in that it’s a sense of continuity and intimate. You know, just being self and always knowing who you are. And those two things are very important, too. You’re not happy in life if you’re stagnant, and you’re also not happy in life if you don’t have a sense of continuity. So having these balances between these four principles are what I found were the key to my own transformation and also to recovering when invariably life makes you wobble and you may fall out of balance. And these are ways that I find that I can bring myself back. And also I’m a coach, I’m a personal transformation coach, and I use these principles with my clients, amongst many other things. But these are ways that we can sustain ourselves when we actually have found a reasonable amount of self-awareness, these are the kinds of things that we can use to sustain ourselves. And yes it was a transformative business. I wrote the book three times, I did three drafts before I was finally convinced that I had shown up fully in the book, and I had let go of all of my hang-ups. So it was a very interesting process of writing, just surrendering to the writing, surrendering to the metaphors, and not getting into a place where telling the reader what to think. I didn’t want to do that. That’s why I don’t actually call it a self-help book, it reads like a novel. It actually reads like a novel.
Dr. Kent: Well you’re, you have a very interesting background, and actually quite similar to mine.
Lynne Serafinn: Yeah, I noticed that.
Dr. Kent: You’ve spent a lot of time in the music industry.
Lynne Serafinn: I sure did.
Dr. Kent: And now you’re an author and a speaker, and a radio host as well. Tell me about your transformation from studying music, classical, going into pop music, starting to work with people, studying in India, you know. How do all these things hang together in your life?
Lynne Serafinn: I’m 54 years old, so you know the older you get the more you tend to live racked up in the experience category. Well, I started as a classical musician when I was very young. I started as a violinist, classical violinist. I was a professional violinist for many years in various symphonies and opera companies, I also sang opera and stuff. And just performed classically for a long time. And it was in my early 20’s that I traveled to India and wanted to learn more about Indian music. Well, I loved Indian music, I kind of never really focused home with it because it was such a complex system that I had to unlearn so much of what I already knew. So on the intellectual platform I loved it, but on the playing platform I didn’t have that much fun with it. But I really got into the philosophy and religion for quite some time. And for 20 years or more I combined, I was married at the time, and my husband and I combined the East West things into the music and also I went into, I kind of got back into my writing gradually by transcribing lectures of various Indian teachers and kind of being a ghost writer for upscale published books. You won’t see my name anywhere because I was actually a ghostwriter for them. And that kind of opened me back into the writing. In the 80’s I got into electronic music and then I really discovered my love for that. Because I got tired of, I kind of said one day I woke up and said, if I wake up one more Christmas and realize that I have to play the Nutcracker Suite one more time, I’m absolutely going to, you know, just bash this violin into a thousand pieces. And so I really wanted a change musically, I was really in a rut. There wasn’t enough challenge for me. And I never really felt myself, I did talk about this in the book, I talk about how I could not find my self-expression through the music because the music industry, at least at that point in time it was the classical industry that I (inaudible) in other aspects of the industry. The music industry I felt was very for me, restrictive. And especially the classical industry. It became too critical. And I was top critic. I could hear, I was a really good analyst and stuff, I had the best ears, I taught so many students, I’ve taught tone-deaf students how to hear. It’s just, I got really, really, really into hearing the sounds, the music totally left me. But when I got into trance music in the early 90’s, that’s when I really started getting connected again to composition, and we actually had a number one transcript in 1994. And then after a while, I kind of burnt out on that and I quit music altogether and kind of drifted around teaching and trying to find myself and went through a huge life change. After the death of my father I went through a divorce, I went through a change of life, a change of career, a change this, a change that, I changed location. And then eventually I (inaudible) the educational system and I started my life completely over again with nothing but my computer and a box of clothes and moved up here to Bedford and became a, and eventually became a coach. And now that’s what I do. And I decided yes, I want to finally be a writer. That’s what I want, finally, finally, give myself that opportunity. And to speak. To speak in public, to do workshops and tell people that you know what, you’ve got this life, step into it and have fun with it, love it, live your purpose, find your purpose. Claim it, go out and live the life you were born to live. And it’s not a selfish thing to do. The world actually needs you. The world needs you to be happy and fulfilled and to help others to be happy and fulfilled. That’s what the world is asking you to do. That’s really what the book is about. It’s a call to action for everybody to live the life they were born to live.
Dr. Kent: Well, the book is called The Garden of The Soul: Lessons From Four Flowers That Unearth the Self. And clearly Lynne Serafinn is a worthy author, and you’re going to have to check her bio out online. It’s fascinating and deep, the things she’s done, and they’re certainly also revealed in the book. And you can visit her online where?
Lynne Serafinn: Well, my book blog is at www.give-receive-become-be.com. And those are all hyphenated. So those are the four principles in the book: give, receive, become, be, dot com with little hyphens between each word. And my coaching site is at create-a-life.co.uk, that’s create, hyphen a, hyphen life dot co dot uk. And lastly if people are fans of Blog Talk Radio, please come and hear my show on Wednesday nights. I have a great show, I interview a lot of authors too, and I interview coaches and spiritual speakers and healers and all kinds of interesting people, artists of all kinds. And that’s on Wednesdays at 6:00 p.m. UK time or 1:00 p.m. Eastern time. Every Wednesday. It’s called Lynne Serafinn’s Garden of the Soul.
Dr. Kent: And of course Lynne Serafinn is also on Twitter, and you can find out all of what’s going on, I’m also on Twitter and I just added her on Twitter. It’s a fun thing for me to be involved in Twitter and see what authors and all sorts of journalists are saying live. So that’s pretty neat, too.
Lynne Serafinn: Yeah, and I follow anybody who engages me. So if you find me at Lynne Serafinn with two n’s in each name, and anyone who engages me saying, “Hi Lynne, it’s me,” you know, I’m a real person, I’m not just somebody trying to get your name. I’ll follow anybody who contacts me.
Dr. Kent: Cool.
Lynne Serafinn: And the other thing, just one last thing, Kent. I do have a Facebook called The Garden of the Soul, and the people in that group are actually helping me write my next book, which is the companion guide to the Garden of the Soul. So if anybody’s on Facebook, go look up the group The Garden of the Soul and you can help me write my book, and you might get your name on the radio, and also might get your name in my next book.
Dr. Kent: Well that’s pretty neat. So go visit her on Facebook or on Twitter or on the web. I think Google will send you to many of those places as well. So thank you so much for chatting with me, Lynne Serafinn, and her book is The Garden of The Soul.
Lynne Serafinn: Thanks so much, Dr. Kent. Have a great rest of the show, and thanks for asking me.
Dr. Kent: And my next guest on the show is going to be the author of Astrology for Enlightenment. She has been an astrologer to some pretty unbelievable people. And I’ll talk to her about her latest book, her name is Michelle Karen. Come on back for that.