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Vulnerable Exposé of Personal Life Experiences


OK - How did this happen?


How did I go from 0 to 65+  ...And this quickly?! 

My personal life trail has lead me - like so many of you with whom I have had the great honor to mentor - through a lot of ups and downs, over and outs! ...All those "worthy teachers" (aka life struggles) hold the keys to our emerging life genius...when we awaken "the eyes to see".

A thread throughout the winding trails and lessons in my life, is an irrefutable direct experience with self-healing, inner peace, and realization of a deeply personal (and universal) spiritual ground that rests in awareness and is alive and on the move in every day, real life.

A creative esthetic by nature and a fanatic researcher by training, I've been my own best "lab rat" in a lifelong study into brain chemistry and social research alongside nutritional and lifestyle factors, including most every modality of healing (both conventional and alternative, medical and spiritual). 


I have read many many hundreds of books and have been a deep student of inquiry, world religion, eastern awakening philosophies, western psychology and mental health research.


That said: The best teachers - by far! - have been the places I have most struggled and hurt to understand.

I share a few of those "worthy teachers" here because you'll know many of them too:


Some WORTHY TEACHERS in The Awkward Teen Years and Early 20's:

  • The early awkwardness of feeling "different or outside" the norm;

  • The prickly ledge of early sex and drinking exploits in my early teens;

  • A high school teacher who manipulated confused and seduced me at 16;

  • An attempted rape; 

  • A naively-unprepared-for way formal big marriage in my 20's; 

  • The guilt and painful process of divorce;

  • The crazy culture of graduate school with all nighters (both on the academic and on the social side);

  • The exciting "best and worst of times" in PhD program where I fell headlong into an immoral (and intensely creative) love affair with a married professor. (That one led to cancer biopsy, emotional breakdown, and the end of my chosen PhD academic route). 


Some WORTHY TEACHERS in The early "feel your power" 30's

  • Escaping loss, heartbroken and stripped of career, a move to California;

  • The seemingly innocuous (almost expected) nightly California wine with dinner or where an invitation was always "would you like to come over for a glass (aka bottle or 2) of wine"?

  • Slow recovery: waiting on tables until, sticking my neck out, I landed a job with an international high tech medical planning think tank up in the hills of Malibu in my early 30's,

  • Regaining my lost health: training 2 years and running in the Big Sur Marathon,

  • Taking the Leap: In an ever so type A kind of way creating a corporate consulting & analysis business (InfoVision Systems) which I owned and ran for 27 years,

  • Creative Blossoming: Becoming known regionally in Southern California for my large "in your face" social commentary art installations (see Galleries on this site) ...

  • A second heart-ache followed by radical Illness from a trip overseas which left me without job, unable to walk for 6 months and now home or income. (OK that was bad.)

  • Escaping to Ojai and remarrying. (yes a repeated pattern: heartbreak - loss of health/income - escape - start over)

  • And everything else that goes with the 30-something high paced and often faux sense of mature adulthood (which can only be recognized for what it was not hindsight).

Some WORTHY TEACHERS in The "Is that all there is?" 40's - (and "my Shaman awakening years")

  • Moved to Ojai, continued my consulting for cities and corporations;

  • Self hatred and shame at my nightly wine habit (addiction) and inability to either conquer or accept it;

  • Significantly stepped up my art and spiritual inquiries trying to make sense of life;

  • Hallmark triumph as an artist: Creating a series of ceramic portraits and private showing with famous ceramic sculptor "Mama of Dada" Beatrice Wood. 

  • ...It was during those hours in the studio in a deeply inward expansion that I catapulted myself right down the rabbit hole of "my shaman awakening years";  

  • This Dark Night of Soul  e v e n t u a l l y blossomed into a mystical opening which I managed to set to pen in the writing account in my first book: Remembering Who You Really Are.

  • It was at this time in my late 40's that more and more people began seeking and asking to work with me - a blessing that has evolved into my SoulArts teaching and life work which takes me beyond the limits of self and into the eternal pulse of life.  


Some WORTHY TEACHERS Hitting 50: "Half a Century Reality Check"

  • When my (then) husband of 13 years suddenly unexpectedly died, I was alone in my home and starting over in many ways. I watched as I sat with a house I could not afford payments, a property I could not maintain, a new vocation that did not have the high earning of my previous business and yet was clearly my life calling, and in a home where literally everything but me had left or died;

  • A friendship and home partnership at this time evolved into new explorations of relationship, intimacy, and turning half a century 5 0 years O.L.D. together...and (OMG) "is it too little too late for us to open to love with our panoply of life's baggage?" 

  • During this era we saved my step son from a life threatening opiate addiction at the expense of our mortgage and grew in deeper applied spirituality in real life practice.

  • I don't want to admit this but - menopause - is really a thing and had a decade of bizarre health issues and have had to apologize to the sky and to all woman I used to call "wimps" - SORRY, I was wrong!

  • My SoulArts life work became more in demand and grew to where individuals and couples were now traveling to work in private with me each month from all over the world.

  • There was a notable maturing into a gentler sense of being with life.


Sexy Surprising 60's:

At 60 and after 6 decades of life experience with things that have given me perspective and compassion:

  • health crisis,

  • addiction,

  • death of loved ones,

  • depression/anxiety,

  • big successes 

  • big losses and worries of financial future,

  • being known as a spiritual teacher

  • and very much aware of the shared humility and grace that is the lead in my unique teachings... 


I have arrived at:

  • a stunning sense of new vitality, calm mind, spunky spirit'

  • compassion (and sorrow) for a crazy lost and lovely species;

  • greater humble potency as spiritual mentor;

  • shell-shock (after my parents' passing) that "I am next in line"

  • and gentling into the dance of love in the making.

Now, having given up my home community and international retreat work of 30 years in Ojai, California and moving first to upstate NY to help my parents pass (a 3 year, difficult new set of training), we have found our new home in magnificent Ashland Oregon.... Here to harvest and share the culmination of these latest years with the previous... and to serve as guide to help others at this often awkward next doorway as well!...

Why I write this? 

Because too many teachers seem to hide the human side of themselves ...and because the humility I share with you has become key to my unique transforming SoulArts process, understanding, and teachings.

Because I am called to walk the talk and live from that which I teach others.

(...And, damn if your own "thinking you've got it" doesn't come back and bite you - again and again :)


I stand for real ...And for me, that 's a high reverence.  


I'm for that which is genuinely grounded, studied and real - not for pretentious piety or new age fundamentalism; I'm for humility; for awe; and for the art of applied paradox as the doorway to true and every moving wisdom and understanding.

As mystic/scientist, Carl Jung realized:


My life is my art. And so is yours.

I am here to cast a light (often times by way of the dark shadows) onto that living artistry and the gifts that arise from our failures, tragedies and unconscious choices... I am here to help you see in the dark places, the small golden keys of Grace that open the door to a living spirituality: one with personal integrity of heart, in an ever opening and unfolding expression of True Self. 

For those who seek to open the gift and genius of your life 
This is for you. 
spiritual teacher author Rounda LaRue Center for Soul Arts Ojai California


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