Barbara’s spiritual and metaphysical journey

Only when we cross a bridge, we make new encounters in our lives. Barbara Bullock

Only when we cross a bridge, we make new encounters in our lives.  Barbara Bullock

Only when we cross a bridge, we make new encounters in our lives. Barbara Bullock

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Tina – Das Tina Turner Musical A personal review

I cried again – this time in German. Barbara Bullock 

It was May 26th. Some of you may know why the 26th is significant. When it was announced that the Tina Turner musical would open in Germany, there was no doubt in my mind that I would just have to go see it there. Tina/Anna Mae had said how important Germany is to her. I knew that I wanted to support her and started planning my trip to Hamburg. After having the privilege to go to the musical in London several times, I was really curious how the musical would turn out in Hamburg. At first, I wasn’t sure how a story from Nutbush, Tennessee to the world’s biggest stages would be interpreted in another language given the iconic Tina songs many people around the world love. Quite honestly, I had read quite a few posts that criticized the songs being sung in German. I had an open mind. I knew that; however, the show was translated, I would probably compare the show to the premiere in England and its huge success there anyway. Stakes were set high for sure! However, I would also know that nothing that Anna Mae Bullock from Nutbush, Tennesse does is done half-heartedly. In addition, Anna Mae’s story is German too. Come with me to Germany.  

Beginnings in Germany 

Ever since I was a little girl, I have been very fond of Germany – a beautiful country (especially countryside with its lush forests, green meadows, and crystal-clear lakes), its people, products, food (yes, those pretzels and sausages) and language. For me it was a foreign country and crossing the border into Germany was exciting! In those days you needed German Marks (Deutschmark) and a passport. I couldn’t wait to spend time there. Over the years many travels would bring me back. I would stay with friends on their couches, spend vacations with relatives in a single-family home, house sit a fancy apartment in a big city, and stay at the finest hotels from Munich, Cologne, Hamburg, Berlin, Gelsenkirchen, Duesseldorf, Karlsruhe, Frankfurt, Mannheim, to Bremen, and a little in between.  What all the travels had in common was love. Love of people and love of music. Some of the brightest stars in pop and rock music would see me at their concerts in Germany. Little did I know back then how my love story with Germany would connect me to little Anna Mae from Nutbush, Tennessee. 

The story 

Having seen the show in London before gave me a pretty good idea of what to expect in terms of music, dialogue, and story. Once again, Tina – Das Tina Turner Musical is not just a tribute to one of the most successful artists of all time. To me it is the very personal story of little Anna Mae, her adversities, obstacles, and pain and how she, through her God-given talents, audacity, faith, hope, and love not just survives but literally thrives. Last but not least, it is also a praise of all people in her life who saw the real Anna Mae and her immense potential when others looked away.  

The difficult times are once again shown quite graphically. I thought I should get used to them by now. Prepare tissues if you have not yet. So here I go again. At times, I could no longer watch. That’s how real it gets and how amazingly gifted actors and actresses we see are. I won’t give details as I do hope you get to see it for yourself.  

The story builds up and we still remember the little girl from Nutbush filled with a beautiful heart of big dreams but asking herself whether she should indeed leave and go out into the big world. We see her humble beginnings picking cotton. Then, everything changes with Ike Turner (the Hunter…..played by Mandela Wee Wee) who changed everything including her name to make her his own. Hard work, devastation, prayer, faith, hope and success follow breaking any barrier on the way. By the time the story is in Las Vegas, I do feel like dancing as I am celebrating Anna Mae’s freedom. It comes with a hefty price though and lots is still to come.  

A cast that makes the story become real 

Once again, the casting is superb and each of the members deserves the entire Stage Operettenhaus clapping just for them. The evening I came to Hamburg, Adisat Semenitsch totally convinced as Zelma Bullock, Adi Wolf touched my heart and soul once again during one of my favorite scenes of the entire story, the love story between a grandmother and her granddaughter little Ann. Denise Lucia Aquino was the beloved sister Alline who would always see her sister Anna Mae through everything. Protective yet powerfully standing up when needed, one could see that Alline was a rock in Anna Mae’s turbulent life and career. Whenever I think of Alline, I am certain that she still watches out for her sister today from the Great Beyond. I am so happy that we often see her character in the musical so audience members who might not have known her well have a chance to do so now.  

I’d like to also thank the following cast members: Michael B. Sattler, Sarah Schuetz, Stefan Preuth, Alex Bellinkx, Mario Wehmeier, Kristofer Weinstein-Storey, Yasmin, Lina, Issa, Kerry Jean, Kellianna Jay, Donielle David, Tina Ajala, Kristel Constant, Claudio Goncalves, Dinipri Etebu, Philip Nowicki and conductor Broder Kuehne for an incredible evening in Hamburg.  

Nyassa Alberta 

I had not heard of Nyassa Alberta prior to this musical, so I looked forward to seeing her in certainly the most significant role on the Reeperbahn. In pictures and videos of the premiere I had instantly liked her and a good feeling. Tina and Erwin Bach surely must have approved of her, and I trusted their judgment as well. In the musical, we see various versions of Anna Mae/Tina Turner from the teenager ready to leave her nest, in her famous stage clothes and wig, fighting for her life, and sitting on the floor chanting. Once again in Hamburg, the star becomes human, a personality a person, and the story of little Anna Mae from Nutbush, Tennessee, USA touches hearts of the audience over again.  

Nyassa Alberta is a star in her own right. Not only immensely talented, her voice sounding very close to Anna Mae’s singing voice, so much so that I got goosebumps. Is this Tina or Nyassa singing in front of me? Neither actually. I believe that Nyassa must have drawn from Anna Mae’s inspiration that it swapped over to her for everyone to see. For those who did not have a chance to see Tina perform live during her career, check out Nyassa Alberta. She will give you goosebumps for sure too. I personally thought that Nyassa is a very likable actress and did a fantastic job at the musical. Her acting is real and I really felt I was back in time. I always wonder in amazement how artists remember all the dialogue and lyrics? I certainly was not made for this.  

Furthermore, I would soon experience another highlight when Nyassa interacted with the audience and allowed us to photograph and film her at the end of the show during the concert like part during the famous songs of “Nutbush city limits” and “Proud Mary”. Needless to say, the musical felt more like a concert now, audience dancing and singing along, Nyassa so kind to even shake hands. It cannot be easy to perform and act sometimes every single day in a show like this, so it is good to know that some of the energy is returned from the audience to the performer. Not only that, but I thought that it is the interaction with the audience that made Nyassa Alberta into Tina Turner even more so, who no matter how exhausted and weary she is on stage, would never forget her audience. Not only had Nyassa indeed turned into Tina that evening. She has a heart of gold, a shining light, and immense talent and charisma to take her career higher and higher. I am so grateful to have seen Nyassa Alberta live and will never forget this incredible evening. I wish you, Nyassa, all the best for your future, keep shining. I would love to see you again someday. 

Iconic Tina Turner songs in German 

So did the Tina Turner songs in German work for me? Absolutely. A few songs are not translated. Of the ones that are, most I thought are interpreted quite literally so there isn’t really that much of a difference lyrically. One song that I particularly liked is the German version of Private Dancer. The German text changes the meaning of the song to I will continue to dance. I really loved this change in the musical because it shows that things were not as easy as they seemed for Anna Mae. I thought that is was absolutely fitting to let her sing that she would continue to dance. In my understanding, this means I will continue no matter what. 

Last but not least, Simon Mehlich as Erwin Bach.  

When Simon Mehlich came on as Erwin Bach, the audience almost cheered, naturally we are in Germany. Surprisingly, many scenes in the musical are also very witty and funny. So also, the scenes between Anna Mae and Erwin. My heart filled with love and my mind became thoughtful though. Everyone knows their love story. I reminisced my being in Germany. Germany means many positive experiences and emotions and is the home of beloved husband Erwin, so Anna Mae says in the program that you can purchase at the merchandise booth. Tina or Anna Mae, which ever it is, Erwin Bach has saved both. One particular scene at the Tina Das Tina Turner Musical shows him believing in her as an artist and with his knowhow of the record business seeing her success with What’s love got to do with it to be in reachable distance likely saving her career for good. And recently in her book Tina Turner My love story she revealed that it was her beloved Erwin who saved her life not long ago. What’s love got to do with all this? My heart fills with admiration for an amazing man who stands by the person Anna Mae no matter what happens. Without a doubt without Erwin Bach the record executive, there was no Tina the way audiences know her. Without Erwin the caring husband, we wouldn’t have our beloved Anna Mae anymore. And so, as I fly over Germany back home, looking out through the window I know that far in the distance over the clouds there must be Erwin Bach’s birth place somewhere. I smile. Oh, how I wished I could thank you, Erwin, in person and hear your beautiful German accent. As I say a prayer of gratitude, I now know that it was love of people and music that brought me to Germany again.  

To the entire production team, I bow and say thank you for not just an amazing night out but most surely the best musical I will ever see.  See you on Broadway.

Thank you, Anna Mae, for being you. 



Barbara Bullock  

Copyright © 2019 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer 

Have you been inspired today? 

Photo credit Tina – Das Tina Turner Musical and Barbara Bullock May 26, 2019 

Work cited:  

Tina – Das Tina Turner Musical Hamburg 

Venue Stage Operettenhaus, further credits see London team 

Tina – The Tina Turner Musical  

Director: Phyllida Lloyd, Venue Aldwych Theatre, Choreographer: Anthony Van Laast, Music director: Thomas Kelly, Producers: Tina Turner & Erwin Bach, Joop van den Ende, Stage Entertainment, Tali Pelman, Book by Katori Hall  

June 2019

Tina Turner My love story, book, Atria Books; First Edition edition (October 16, 2018) 

What’s love got to do with it, song, Capitol, 1984, Terry Britten, Grahan Lyle writers. 

Disclaimer: This post states the author’s opinion only for a free personal blog that serves to inspire others and is not meant to represent Ms. Tina Turner, Erwin Bach, her associates nor the producers of Tina The Tina Turner musical/Tina Das Tina Turner musical. No harm or infringement intended. Barbara Bullock. 

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

The miracle of Anna Mae on November 26

Little Anna Mae

Anna Mae Bullock from Nutbush, Tennessee.
Experience her story in the Tina – Tina Turner musical.

Little Anna Mae and I would have gotten along so well as children. The little girl from Tennessee, the cute tomboy escaped to nature when times were lonely, the same I did when I was so. I know she was beautiful inside and out, braids, dress and all, running over the meadows in her rural community. Little did residents know, what a treasure God had planted there. I must have watched this precious little girl from the heaven’s above as I can still hear her laughter, far in the distance of past times still echoing and incomparable to this day. Clearly, little Anna Mae was born with the drive and joy of life she would need to take her through all trials and tribulations ahead. Beginnings were not easy, but she was born with an army of heavenly helpers such as angels surrounding her to assist her on her path. It must be so. Otherwise, I cannot explain her everlasting God given strength, courage, and tenacity with which she masters every unbearable challenge thrown at her in her life to this day. And there would be many.

Keep going no matter what

During her career, she gave the world her all as Tina. And still she goes on. Anna Mae is talented beyond measure in everything she touches. Whatever Anna Mae does, coordinates, and decorates, is changed forever by her immense wisdom, unique style, grace, and sense of beauty. She makes everything beautiful and magical. Empty houses become cozy homes, simple stories become fairy tales, unpretentious melodies become hymns, strangers become family.

Dear Anna Mae,

This Thanksgiving, I have had so much to be grateful for. This year has not been easy with changes in my life, new challenges, and the huge loss we all, but of course especially you as a mother, suffered in the summer. But we have a lot to be thankful for. I am so thankful that I could be of support to you; for Erwin, your ultimate life saver; God and your spirit guides who guided everyone to make the right decisions. I am thankful for your doctors’ knowledge and experience to help heal you. I am grateful for the moment in time when Erwin was wheeled into your room to realize that he still had you and you him when you opened your beautiful eyes.

Thank you for opening your heart and telling the world your love story. Knowing what you have been through is heartbreaking. I cannot imagine how difficult the past few years were for you, but I see clearly the love that saved you. The recent revelations of many health challenges over the last few years made me realize that our beautiful Anna Mae is not a queen in a fairy tale who lives forevermore but a human being worthy of cherishing as such. With strenuous working days behind you, hopefully, everyone agrees that it is not the time to be asking for more unless you agree and it keeps you motivated. Nothing will make me happier than to see you, Anna Mae, healthy and joyful in your garden enjoying the sunshine in your life for many years to come.

You are wanted

You have given so much love to so many throughout your life so far, and I hope that it is returned to you multiplied and reaches your beautiful heart. I know very well that no one can replace someone’s missing love, be it from a parent, a partner, or someone you thought was your friend. I know what it feels like not to be wanted. You are wanted. You are needed.

We still need you. Your Erwin, your family, your soul family, your friends and Tina’s fans still need you here on earth happy and healthy. You are our wife, mother, aunt, grandmother, great grandmother, friend, neighbor, earth mother, soul mother, and so much more. Please don’t give up just yet. Whatever life throws at you down the road we can’t know. But know this: You got this because we got you. Always remember my promise. And the miracle of Anna Mae goes on.

November 26

Today is a day of celebration. My favorite day of the year. The year was 1939 in Tennessee and Anna Mae was born on November 26. What a miracle! Every day is a miracle of life. Of your life, little Anna Mae. And still, you go on. A prayer for many mornings to come when you open your beautiful eyes. A prayer for many more joyful times that make you smile. Because when you smile, the world is a better place. When you smile, you warm my heart when I know that Anna Mae is happy. Happy birthday beautiful Anna Mae.

For those who happen not to know Anna Mae Bullock’s/Tina Turner’s story, you have not been at the Tina The Tina Turner musical yet. Then it’s time to go!!! Bring tissue with you though. You’ll cry happy tears for little Anna Mae from Nutbush, Tennessee when her story touches your heart.

With all my heart,



Barbara Bullock
Spiritual writer

Follow my blog at:
Copyright © 2018 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer
Have you been inspired today?

Photo credit by Tina: The Tina Turner Musical
Tina – The Tina Turner Musical 
Director: Phyllida Lloyd, Venue: Aldwych Theatre, Choreographer: Anthony Van Laast, Music director: Thomas Kelly, Producers: Tina Turner, Joop van den Ende, Stage Entertainment, Tali Pelman

Disclaimer: This post states the author’s opinion only for a free personal blog that serves to inspire others and is not meant to represent Ms. Tina Turner, her associates nor the producers of Tina The Tina Turner musical. No harm or infringement intended. Barbara Bullock.

Posted in Uncategorized

A message to Craig with love from Barb – The day the world lost its soul brother

Sunrise 1958
Sunset 2018
Love = eternal

The day the world lost its soul brother

These posts are the most difficult to write. Yet I have been hearing the cries of many in need of such imprinted support. I hope that this message to Craig Raymond Turner will leave many with a bit of healing and inspiration.

Dear Craig,

When I got the news, I almost screamed. Frantically searching the Internet for the truth, I kept looking for the “forget it, just a hoax” sign. But there was none. Instead, more and more messages of broken hearts, RIPs and symbols of sadness started pouring all over. So, sudden, so unexpected, so tragic. This just could not be real. And yet it was. No relief in sight. My first thought was all family. Oh my God. Unimaginable sorrow came over me. My heart broke for your mother Anna Mae. This must be the worst day of her life so far, and I felt completely helpless. What a nightmare to go through for a mother, any mother. I so wished I had wings to put your family under for comfort. I held everyone tight with love in my thoughts and prayers and reached out to those I could. The worst is that, when we lose such loved ones, there is no going through. This loss is forever.

Time to heal

Not long after the terrible news, I dreamed of you, Craig. Thank you for coming into my dream. I am sorry to learn how you were hurting. I hope you find the peace you could not find here back in our spiritual home surrounded by loved ones and the angels. Your soul and heart need a lot of healing and recuperation in our heavenly home now. I am certain that your guardian angels will help you get to the light out of the darkness you seemed to see all around you on earth. Many of us will never get answers to the questions we have. What I know for sure is that this is not the time to judge, blame, nor speculate but a time to forgive and heal.

One day at a time

 For weeks, my tears kept falling every day especially in a moment of silence and late at night. Loneliness crept into my being as nothing made sense anymore. I did not feel like doing anything anymore. The world without Craig was not the same anymore. How to go on? I took your Buddhist advice by trying to live in the present, by letting the past go and not worrying about the future. Tears might not fall every day for the rest of my life, but my heart still wrenches and my throat tightens when I think of you and realize that you are indeed not among us anymore. My tears are drying, but I will always cry for you.

Kindness and encouragement in person

Craig, you will probably never know how much of a spiritual brother, friend, and mentor you were to me. You were so kind to me and so many others. I already miss your inspirational posts on Social Media on positive thinking, Buddhism, and success. Your thumbs up, birthday wishes and encouragement meant the world to me and were an honor. Seeing you online made my day like sunshine on a cloudy day. Your presence made me always wonder how you were doing on that day. You had an amazing, warm smile and bright light. Handsome as can be, all will be missed terribly on this planet.

On success, luxury, and traveling the world

I truly looked up to you and learned so much from you. I always looked out for your news of success and happiness, as I knew how much you deserved it all. Craig, you and I had so much in common. We liked many of the same things, luxury, music, good food, chanting, and traveling the world, and knew that not even the sky is the limit. You inspired me, encouraged me, uplifted me. You helped me to keep going because I knew that if you could do something, so could I at least try. I used your advice the other day and stood up for myself. Who is going to teach me now? By working on improving your life condition by chanting, working hard, and the law of attraction, you taught me so much. A true spiritual friend lost forever.

BBQs and Real Estate will never be the same again

Just before you left us, I saw a BBQ grill and thought of you. I wanted to send you a photo of it. But then it was too late. You were an amazing chef. Now when I see BBQs, soul food, and recipes, I think of you. Besides, I am still working on my goal to purchase my own home. Who is going to sell me my future house (better be a mansion) now? One day, I wanted to give you a call to show me around. I wanted you to get my commission. I saw how hard you worked to learn, advance, and make it in this business. I would have been so proud to call you my realtor.

The world’s brother

Here is another lesson you taught me.  Do what you can today. Enjoy life, have fun with your friends, hug your loved ones today and spend time with them. Life is so precious. You had so many buddies to hang out with, travel with, and enjoy the good things and moments in life. I believe that many people near and far felt your caring, loving, and fun energy. For so many, including me, you were and will always be like a brother, truly the world’s brother. A brother I never had but always wished for. Until I knew you.

Happy birthday in heaven – Mother Anna Mae’s baby

Happy birthday in heaven dearest Craig. This month it would have been your 60th birthday, and I looked forward to celebrating you and seeing where your new decade would take you. My heart is weeping for you, Craig, and my prayers up for all family and friends. 60 years ago, you were your mother’s baby. 60 years later you still are and will always be. I can’t take her pain but will make sure that she knows that her and the family, no matter what happens in life, will always be loved and supported as much humanly possible. May their faith and the love from everyone get them through this day and always, Mother Anna Mae and all family and friends missing you, our beautiful baby Craig.

Something beautiful remains

During her career, your mother recorded a song that I find is so fitting here. “Something beautiful remains”. Among the lyrics are “tears will leave no stain, time will ease the pain, for every light that fades, something beautiful remains”. Something beautiful indeed remains after your passing, Craig. That is friendship, community, and eternal love. Let me explain.

Not long after your passing, many of your friends and family gathered to celebrate your life. Loved ones from near and far said their goodbyes on one day and set your spirit free. On another, prayer halls at the SGI center were filled with chants for your life and soul. Finally, old friends and family reminisced their memories of you over your so beloved Soul food. In addition, those who could not attend in person got together and joined in by remembering, praying, and chanting for you around the world at their own location in their own time.


May you find the peace in your heart and soul in our heavenly home. I miss you and will love you forever. Your mother taught us to go Beyond. Prayer brings back peace to the soul. Craig, you have touched hearts worldwide with your wisdom, kindness, and smile. Gone much too soon from us, the world came together to chant and pray for your eternal life and lift your family and friends up in prayer during this difficult time.

Many of us now keep gathering now in your memory to connect, uplift, and inspire each other as friends, as brothers and sisters. As new friendships are formed and bonds of eternal love are deepened, I know it’s you. You must be smiling from above seeing us connected just as you did while among us.

Something beautiful remains indeed. This is the power of eternal, unconditional love that remains. While many of us will grieve for you forever, we also know that the love that remains among us is truly something beautiful. True love comes from the soul. On the soul level, it is pure, timeless, and unconditional. Peace be with you, soul brother Craig. We love you and we’ll see you again when it is our time to enter through heaven’s gate. Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. Rest in peace now and fly high. You are indeed free. You are home.

I love you, my Soul brother.




Barbara Bullock

Copyright © 2018 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer

Have you been inspired today?

Works cited:

Something beautiful remains, song, 1996. Songwriters: Graham Hamilton Lyle / Terry Britten Something Beautiful Remains lyrics © Kobalt Music Publishing Ltd., BMG Rights Management

“Prayer brings back peace to the soul. Go beyond”, Beyond Singing

Nam-myoho-renge-kyo. SGI – Soka Gakkai International.

Disclaimer: This post is dedicated to Craig Raymond Turner (1958-2018). It states the author’s opinion only for a free personal blog that serves to inspire others and is not meant to represent Mr. Craig Turner, Ms. Tina Turner, nor specific family and friends nor the SGI. No harm or infringement intended. Barbara Bullock.






Posted in AnnaMae, Baby, Chanting, Craig Turner, Emotions, Feelings, inspiration, inspring, kindness, loss, Love, luxury, memories, PositiveThinking, Prayer, Soul, soulbrother, Spirituality, Tina Turner, Unconditional love | Tagged , , , , , , , ,

Tina – The Tina Turner Musical – A review by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer

I cried. And that’s a good thing. Barbara Bullock

A love of musicals

I have always loved musicals as a medium of storytelling. To me, musicals provide the perfect combination of stories coming alive through music, songs, and dance, acting, and dialogue, complemented with props and visual effects. The story of little Anna Mae from Nutbush, Tennessee becoming the world icon Tina Turner deserved the best and got the best forum. A play, very well fitting for other stories, would not do justice here as music has played too much of a part in her life. The story itself, raw, rough, and real, perfectly told in a musical with real actors playing all life-defining moments out right in front of the audience setting the stage for a real understanding of the legacy and life of Anna Mae Bullock, better known as Tina Turner. I had looked forward to this musical for many months. I had the privilege to attend the premiere of the previews on March 21, 2018. Playing in beautiful Aldwych theater in London, one of my favorite cities always a pleasure traveling to, the chosen location could not have been more perfect.

I had seen quite a few musicals before, Broadway shows and smaller productions. Some of them are still running which means that they are quite successful. Many I liked, some I disliked. But none touched me like Tina – The Tina Turner musical. Tina – the Tina Turner musical has set yet another standard. A very high one. It is, as everything that Anna Mae does, simply the best. She gives her all in all she does and one can feel that her heart and soul goes into every production. I also never cried so much at a show before.


Adrienne Warren on stage brought back memories from seeing Tina on tour. During the latter part of the musical, the theater indeed turned a bit into a concert venue as the entire audience sings and dances with Adrienne. This certainly brought back memories of some of the happiest times in my life watching Tina on stage from the front row. Watching Adrienne made me miss Tina and those wonderful times traveling the world not just to see her but support her. I have to admit that I shed a few tears, which might sound silly to you but it comes from my heart. When I attend such shows, I am not merely there to be entertained. I do everything I can to support the artist. I cannot even imagine how much hard work went into the preparation and how cruel the life of a traveling artist actually is. I believe that most people are probably not aware of this. Many people in show business are very good at keeping it private unless the pressure of the business becomes so much that it shows and interferes with an artist’s career as well. So here I am to show my respect and support to an artist, who gives her all every single time.

I also cried because I became so thankful that Anna Mae was born in the first place and that she was equipped with the strength she needed. I am in eternal gratitude for her guardian angels for protecting her during her escape. I started to miss her as a person and wished she would have come.

The  most personal project ever

Tina – The Tina Turner Musical is not just a tribute to one of the most successful artists of all time. To me it is the very personal story of little Anna Mae with a heart of gold filled with dreams, her childhood and adolescence, her adversities, obstacles, and pain and how she, through her God-given talents, audacity, faith, hope, and love not just survives but literally thrives. Last but not least, it is also a praise of all people in her life who saw the real Anna Mae and her immense potential when others looked away.

An invisible thread of faith and love becomes evident when we see and hear Adrienne Warren, playing and portraying Tina Turner in her famous stage clothes and wig, sitting on the floor chanting. The star becomes human, a personality becomes a person, and the story of little Anna Mae from Nutbush, Tennessee, USA begins. This thread of faith, love and the connection to the past and to little Anna Mae, no matter how successful she may become, is seen throughout the musical as the celebrity standing in front of her grandmother GG and her own inner child, little Anna Mae standing on a tree. Certainly, one of my favorite scenes in the musical as I love such references to the past which give me a glimpse of Anna Mae’s life before she became famous. No matter how far we make it in life, I believe that we are all the result of everything that happened in the past and every single person we have met and every action they and we have done. The reflection back to the past makes it visual that all that happened, the misery and the success is all part of our greatest stories of courage and endurance as well as an unconditional love of our loved ones who help us get through it all. Besides, living with her loving grandmother reminds me a bit of my own childhood and how much a grandmother’s love means to a lonely child.

Many people were and still are very significant and influential in Anna Mae Bullock’s and Tina Turner’s life. Many are portrayed in the musical by actors and actresses, who with talent, charm, and a bit of humor, fulfill these roles perfectly. We see Aisha Jawando as Tina’s sister Alline Bullock, the big sister always by her side. Madeline Appiah totally convinces as Zelma Bullock. All actresses are amazing because, in my opinion, they portray Anna Mae’s true spirit. Anna Mae was there in spirit, the little girl that grew into one of the most successful artists of all times.

The difficult times

The difficult times are shown quite graphically. Prepare tissues if you have not yet done so. When Kobna Holdbrook-Smith comes on stage, my heart starts pumping. He could not be a better and more realistic Ike. I had to look away during some of the cruelest scenes trying and succeeding at beating Adrienne Warren as Anna Mae to the floor. At times, I even wished he would stop as I could no longer watch. That’s how real it gets and how amazingly gifted actors and actresses we see. But this is not just an act.

Yes, we have seen those scenes before in the movie or read about them. However, scenes being played out by actors live takes them to another level of reality. Yes, this really happened. Beautiful Anna Mae being tossed to the floor, beaten and hurt, seeing no escape other than ending her own life, and begging for help. Yes, beautiful Anna Mae indeed had to endure this. By now I am in tears wishing I could get up from my seat and hug two individuals, Adrienne Warren who so convincingly plays her part that Anna Mae becomes real within her, and the real Anna Mae seemingly far away from the London stage to give some comfort and to let her know that everything was going to be okay. The scene evolves and the story continues. Thank God the past is the past.

The story builds up and we still remember the little girl from Nutbush filled with a beautiful heart of big dreams but asking herself whether she should indeed leave and go out into the big world. It’s as if she asks herself whether she is indeed cut out to lead such a life. Yes, Anna Mae always was. We see her humble beginnings picking cotton. Then, everything changes. Starting out singing with Ike Turner changed her clothes, changed her shoes into high heels, even changed her name. Singing had become rather a burden than a pleasure, relationships seemed even more complicated, everything even more difficult than back home. Anna Mae had become Tina whether she wanted or not. Was this what little Anna Mae had in mind?


Once all trials seem over, Ryan O’Donnell as the manager Roger Davies provides much-needed hope refusing to give up on his newly found talent, and Gerard McCarthy enlightens as the record company marketing manager Erwin Bach. We know the love story that follows. Particularly enchanting I found the scene when we hear him say that he likes to meet artists in person, falls for Anna Mae and literally runs to Brazil to let her know that he loves her for herself. This means her past and all wounds included. This is the true love Anna Mae so deserves.

Motherly love

Some of my favorite scenes in the musical showed the deep bond and motherly love between her and her sons Craig and Ronnie. A beautiful, unconditional love between mother and child seems especially strong here, it is beautiful to watch. The child actors do a fantastic job, so I can only imagine the real sons. I love seeing them together with their mom. No more words could describe this motherly love.

Tina was there

The first time I could really feel the essence of Anna Mae’s presence was during Adrienne Warren’s performance of River Deep Mountain High, probably one of Anna Mae’s first attempt to break out of Ike’s chains of confinement through her own talent and willpower. Adrienne’s voice and dance performance could not have been closer to Tina’s. I literally got chills as if a spirit had entered Adrienne’s body and taken over. So, there I was crying again. Tina was there that night. I believe that Tina and the entire production team has found the perfect match to showcase the true spirit of Tina. Adrienne became Tina that night. I believe that Tina found her and that Adrienne found her inner Tina Turner. Adrienne is beautiful, charming and extremely talented. That night, she channeled Tina. I could not believe what I was hearing. Adrienne’s voice started to sound like Tina’s. She channeled her in a way not simply trying to sing and dance like one of our greatest performers of all time but she channeled the fact that Tina is not just a stage persona but a little girl from Tennessee who had overcome the unimaginable. In this sense, Adrienne channeled not only the essence of Tina in terms of performance but also the essence of Anna Mae, the person. Although two separate entities, the on-stage Tina and the private Anna Mae, I believe that it takes both personas to create the essence of what the world knows as Tina Turner. Like a set of twins, separate entities and yet one, it takes Anna Mae’s belief system and Tina’s professionalism to create what the world knows as Tina Turner, one of the most successful artists of all times.

Tina and Anna Mae

In my opinion, Adrienne could not have done better at portraying both, the stage persona Tina and the private Anna Mae, or at least as much of a glimpse into this world Anna Mae herself would allow. Adrienne’s performance brought tears to my eyes because, to me, Adrienne could not have channeled both, Tina and Anna Mae more authentically. What also is shown in the musical is how extremely lovable Anna Mae, the person, really is. Here once again, the perfect acting makes this quality visible to the audience. After experiencing so much misery in one’s life, many hurt people become tough, angry and bitter. Once again, we see that Anna Mae is bigger than that. She turned to her faith and kept on living and loving through it all.

I believe that many things in our lives happen for a reason even if we don’t understand it initially. I also believe that God equipped Anna Mae with incredible faith probably because he knew what she would have to go through. She got an immensely tough life lesson. But we also know the result. Anna Mae is not one to break. Anna Mae is one to rise above all. At the official opening of the musical in April 2018, we heard her say that she turned poison into medicine.  She indeed did.

Adrienne Warren

Adrienne Warren is the next generation of performance. Many young artists were inspired exactly by such success stories as Tina Turner’s. May Adrienne’s success continue to catapult her into the heights she imagines for her career just as little Anna Mae in the cotton fields of Tennessee once dreamed her dreams of being a star. I see a bright inner light on Adrienne’s face just as Anna Mae has an inner light that shines brightly on the outside. Adrienne is beautiful and incredibly talented herself and, with this performance, has made another step up high in her career. May your dreams come true, Adrienne Warren.

A story of audacity

Throughout the musical, we hear many of the world’s favorite Tina Turner songs delivered and woven into dialogue. One of my favorite songs of the musical is Don’t turn around not because it is a fantastic song, but the meaning of its lyrics and how suitable they are in this story. “I’m gonna be strong, I’m gonna do fine, don’t worry about this heart of mine, I will survive, I’ll make it through” (Hammond, Warren), sounds like little Anna Mae crying out letting us know that no matter what happens Anna Mae will always make it. As if she is saying to the audience “don’t worry about me”.  And yet we do worry. At least those members of the audience who came to pay tribute to the human being in the first place. The standing ovation in the theater was certainly to the entire cast for their remarkable performance but also to the essence of Anna Mae. Through storytelling the star became human.


As mentioned earlier, musicals are the perfect combination of sights and sounds on a stage. The already graphic story is accompanied by beautiful stage design and scenery from the cotton fields, scenes on the road, and home life to rainy days in London (of course presented with the hit I can’t stand the rain). I also have a particular interest in history and how people used to live, dress etc. I love the costumes and props in the musical that literally take one back into the 40s, 50s, 60s, 70s, and 80s! A delight and must see!

Faith in a better tomorrow

Most people around the world will never have the opportunity to get to know Anna Mae personally, but perhaps this musical is a glimpse into the life of little Anna Mae who, through her own audacity, hope, and love, turned into Tina Turner, one of the most beautiful and successful artists of all times. Thank you, little Anna Mae, for dreaming your dreams. Thank you, grown Anna Mae, for carrying on when you felt like giving up. Thank you for giving the world Tina. Thank you to everyone involved in the production of this wonderful project. Finally, thank you, Adrienne, for carrying the torch to future generations. I hope that Anna Mae will be encouraging you in many years to come just as her grandmother once took care of her and set little Anna Mae free to follow her dreams.

I believe in you, Anna Mae

This musical is not a simple tribute to a great artist. Performing and watching this musical is a tribute to an amazing human being and the opportunity to give a little bit back of what she has been given all her life. Everything she does is done with perfection. I started to miss Anna Mae, the person, terribly.

Dear Anna Mae,

I am sure it was yet another sacrifice you had to make in your life, and you have had to make plenty. You don’t do anything quickly and carelessly just so it is done. You are a true artist giving your all to your audience. You don’t stop when you are tired, have had enough, are unwell or hurt. It takes every inch of your body and soul to please others because this is who you are (at least as far as I know). You are a true mother. Giving your all never asking for anything in return. Francesca Jackson as Rhonda Graam singing Open Arms describes promises to always be there as a friend. All these and more people believed in Anna Mae. And so, as I leave the show, this is my promise to you, Anna Mae. I promise that I’ll always be your friend. No matter what may still happen in your life, know that you’ll be supported, know that you’ll be loved through it all. It is my promise to you that I will always turn around and never walk away. I will always have open arms for you. Telling your story with this musical means so much to so many and I truly hope that future generations worldwide can at least catch a glimpse of the amazing Anna Mae from Nutbush, Tennessee, USA and what can emerge out of a little girl and her heart filled with dreams, audacity, and love.

Thank you, Anna Mae, for being you. I love you.

To the entire production team, I bow and say thank you for not just an amazing night out but most surely the best musical I will ever see.




Barbara Bullock

Copyright © 2018 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer

Photo taken by Barbara Bullock in London, March 2018.

Have you been inspired today?

Work cited:

Tina – The Tina Turner Musical

Director: Phyllida Lloyd, Venue: Aldwych Theatre, Choreographer: Anthony Van Laast, Music director: Thomas Kelly, Producers: Tina Turner, Joop van den Ende, Stage Entertainment, Tali Pelman

May 2018

Don’t turn around, song, Capitol, 1986, Albert Hammond, Diane Warren, writers.

I can’t stand the rain, song, Capitol, 1984, Ann Peebles, Don Bryant & Bernard “Bernie” Miller, writers.

Open Arms, song, Sony/ATV Music Publishing LLC, Universal Music Publishing Group, 2004, Martin Brammer, Colette Van Sertima, Benjamin Barson, writers.


Posted in AdrienneWarren, AnnaMae, audacity, endurance, endurande, England, Gratitude, hope, Love, Musical, Nutbush, Spirituality, story, Tennessee, Tina, Unconditional love, United Kingdom | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Awakening Beyond – A review

Awakening Beyond

 A project by Regula Curti, TinaTurner, Ani Choying, Dima Orsho, Sawani Shende Sathaye, Mor Karbasi

A review by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer


Time to awaken to your soul

When I listen to music, I see the music. Images appear in my mind. A message from the divine is delivered through music. Come with me on the journey of Awakening Beyond.

A new way of seeing

A soft sound of a single flute seemingly out of nowhere is soon joined by an ever empowering crescendo. As our world sees yet another day, the first few rays of sunlight merge with the most powerful star of our galaxy to shine its life-giving light and warmth each day. Angelic tunes of the founder of the Beyond projects, Regula Curti, are accompanied by new, unknown yet the spirit of inquiry evoking vocal sounds that bring forth new thought forms. This time, it’s aim is to take the listener to places not yet explored by the Beyond projects while providing a thread to previous projects with spiritual messages and familiar voices. Followers have heard and learned to love various songs and prayers from a variety of religious traditions such as Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Judaism, Islam, and Sikhism.  Awakening Beyond further examines the deep roots of Heart Sutras, Sufi poems, Sephardic music, Syrian lullabies, Arabic traditions and additions from India and Spain and brings ancient sounds into our modern world. Like a river of time, Awakening Beyond tries to bridge the past with the present and creates awareness that will allow for hearts to open and choices made for a better tomorrow.

No coincidence

I think it is no coincidence that Tibet and Syria, two beautiful countries with history and traditions well worth passing on to future generations were chosen to be represented by the Beyond projects. The conflicts and endless destruction of cultural heritage, eradicating entire communities and assassinating countless human beings, many of them innocent children, have been occurring for so long. Images of such agony and despair on television and in the press, have almost become a part of our days. So much so that many people have literally stopped paying attention and even question their authenticity.

Are these battles so insurmountable that there is no end in sight and the only solution the complete elimination of entire cultures? As one of the answers to the problems, many countries around the world have opened their gates to provide refuge for the innocent bystanders. However, after leaving everything behind and voyaging deadly passages many face new challenges. Those who don’t seem to adapt to unknown cultures and traditions quick enough encounter everything but newfound freedom. Citing fellow human beings as too dangerous, which certainly some are, closed borders for them also means closed borders for the old shop owner whose livelihood was ruined by an unexpected aerial attack, a grandmother who is unable to visit her grandchild studying abroad to further her education unobtainable in her home country in order to serve humanity, and a child standing in agony, hungry, alone, and with nothing left except heart-breaking memories of having his home destroyed and entire family killed, waiting to be rescued by a stranger taken away into an uncertain future. There are many more.

It’s time to wake up

Listening to Awakening Beyond feels to me like a wakeup call for our society as it is today. As an empath, I am very receptive to invisible, mystical and metaphysical existences in our world. I can feel the energy of another person, a room, a place, nature, and sounds. At first, Awakening Beyond omits a new, darker energy to me. It is not a kind of music for the light-hearted or someone who just wants to be entertained for a while. Awakening Beyond truly awakens you to a new world of seeing, a new world of listening, a new world of thinking, and most importantly, a new world of feeling. Waking up is a term most familiar to those who learn about the law of attraction, spirituality, abundance, and the fact that we are indeed spiritual beings in human bodies having a human experience. We know we are eternal. We know that we don’t have souls, but that we are souls. We know that, in order to improve our world as it is, we need to educate as many people as possible about the fact that tolerance, love, and compassion for others and their lives, is the solution to the world’s problems, not violence, discrimination, and war. Understanding really does not take much science and learning. Rather, it takes an open heart and mind to comprehend that we are not that different from the person next to us or living on the other side of the planet. There are many ways to get to such a place in our hearts. Awakening Beyond is one of them. It does not deny the fact that traditions, religions, and customs differ, but, like a mantra, keeps chanting the teaching that the foundation and goal of all traditions are the same.  Human feelings and the eternal quest for the meaning of life is identical across all cultures and histories. As in previous Beyond projects, the message is clear once again. We are all one. We are all spiritual beings coming to planet Earth in different shapes, forms, colors, nationalities, likes, and dislikes. Yet we are all made of and a part of the divine and our vast universe. Ancient cultures have known this for eons. Our modern societies focusing so much on separation, exclusion, and selection, need to reawaken to this fact. I believe that it is one of the goals of the Awakening Beyond project to contribute its share to do just that. Have an open mind. Let the music sink into your consciousness. You might be surprised.

Earth Mother

As if these conflicts and contradictions were not enough, we cannot ignore other pressing issues such as climate change. While water gives life, drought diminishes it. It threatens our very own habitat – Mother Earth – more than many of its inhabitants are aware of. Animals and humans alike can no longer survive. The journey of Awakening Beyond begins Earth Mother Anna Mae Bullock. Tina Turner is the better-known name but is more familiar to most in company with song and dance on the world’s stages. Presented here is the spiritual message of what I believe to be a highly evolved soul. We have heard the stage persona to be retired; we have heard her sing her heart and soul out with the most touching interpretation of Buddhist chants and the Lord’s prayers. As spirituality has played a tremendous part in the person’s life, probably even her soul’s growth in this lifetime, I see our Earth mother as a teacher of her eternal wisdom. Listen closely to her soft yet strong voice. A lonesome soul cries out into the vast universe. Yet it is echoed by unconditional love returning to her multiplied. Many love her but are we really listening to our Earth Mother and her teachings?

As I do, I see land, a desert. Crops bountiful and flourishing last year, are now dying due to drought. Cultures of the desert all eradicated by segregation, war, and violence. Innocent people like you and me have nothing. Not even a drop of water.

Our Earth mother prays for rain so that crops can grow again. We need our Mother Earth. Don’t you see? We cannot keep destroying her, exploiting her. Otherwise, we’ll destroy ourselves. Our Earth Mother Anna Mae knows that.  Are we listening to her truthful, divinely guided words? We need the land to revive. Otherwise, we all will be dying of thirst on the way to freedom.


What really stands out for me on this album is the orchestra. I hear more classical crescendos which remind me of important points in a movie script. Filmmakers frequently use music to intensify a scene and make it appear more dramatic. Like a choir, an orchestra needs every single instrument to function as a whole to create the sound it is supposed to. Awakening Beyond seems to seek to achieve a similar effect. Throughout the project, we hear one voice then another, first single and together as a choir. Complementing each other, blending together and creating a new voice together which can only exist with all participants present. Two or more singers singing from different places on our planet. Like two birds singing the morning song, first one, then another one, then another one joins the conversation. Regardless of culture, religion, and background, singing together with one heart, the source of unconditional love, where all voices and all cultures come from.

Let your chakras and heart dance in peace

Everyone knows how good dancing feels. It connects us to our Mother Earth yet lifts spirits up high. Salutations is a trip to India with enchanting Sawani Shende Sathaye with a modern twist. A classic crescendo accompanies earthly drums, strings represent the connection to our divine. Let’s get up and dance! It is good for the chakras, the energy centers in our human bodies. Everyone feels good after a dance, feels more connected to others so unconditional love can flow more freely. Show your inner happiness with a smile to your neighbor.

Partos Trocados by Mor Karbasi is introduced with soft sounds like the raindrops we heard earlier in the project. Seemingly an innocent lullaby it soon turns into a melancholic melody reminding me a bit of French chansons trying to express a certain sadness of the heart. The English translation of the lyrics gives me chills. Diaspora and slavery are the topics here. A mother sitting in a rocking chair rocking her baby asleep. A beautiful image of motherly love. Not so in cultures experiencing uproar. Always in the awareness that her baby might be taken or their family torn apart as the real world out there is not a peaceful one but filled with sadness and the fading hope of a better tomorrow for our children.

Avalokiteshvara begins with suspension. In search of a way out of an uncomfortable, perhaps even scary situation such as being lost in a dark forest, Om Mani Peme Hung, a traditional Tibetan Buddhist mantra, is soon the savior. The regularity of chanting a regular rhythm is very soothing and comforting. Mantras offer a return to regularity, a comfort zone, a peaceful and relaxing yet uplifting environment in the mind and in the heart. Like a peaceful warrior inviting me to join a wave of peace through chanting. Peaceful resistance is likely the appropriate terminology here and, yes, I suddenly do think of the nonviolent actions of countless evolved beings during the civil rights movement standing up for what is right without violence and rage. The consistent chants and the comfort they bring to my ears invite me to join the movement. Something inside of the music and voice by Ani Choying is calling my attention. Like the nectar inside of a beautiful blossom attracts the bee, a flower field is surrounded by butterflies, so I am too attracted by this expression of divine, unconditional, universal love. An invitation by voice and sound – the audible expression of the divine – to join this movement. A movement of love. The longer I listen, the more I feel like chanting myself. I find myself in a different place. Higher somehow. Vibrating higher into the realms of divine unconditional love I start to feel more peaceful in my heart. I encourage the listener to listen to this powerful mantra in a place where one cannot be disturbed. Too powerful to be silenced, I feel like joining the choir and chanting out loud. Getting close to my heart and my soul I join the Beyond. Listening with headphones on my commute, I look around and don’t see just fellow passengers. I feel compassion for the beings next to me. This is the power of a mantra.

Wiegenlied, Regula Curti’s German lullaby is very soothing and comforting. An angel’s soft touch and embrace taking humanity into his wings and leaving a feather as a reminder that angelic help is always available. Regula reminds us that no matter what happens, we are safe and protected. I see an innocent baby in his crib looking back representing our world’s future.

Our children of today, especially those in war-torn countries, those innocent angel-like beings, are caught in the middle of fighting. Children don’t understand why adults see differences in each other and fight. The angels remind us that children only learn differences when adults teach them those. Children are also naturally curious and just want to try to understand their world around them and why things are the way they seem. Children don’t see differences because they don’t really exist. Children know unconditional love.

Nini Nini sung by Dima Orsho accompanied by a soft flute sounds like a gentle good morning kiss. As the world slowly awakens on a new morning, a new chance, a new day, is given. The sun rises slowly over the rooftops of an ancient city connecting its inhabitants with what has long gone, the past, with what is yet to be, the future. No one really knows what the day will bring. Human beings are once more awakened by the great Beyond to rise again. The opportunity of a new day should not be taken for granted, nor should free will. Free will is another chance for humanity to choose peace, to choose love on this brand-new day. It is up to all of us what we make of this new day. It’s time for Awakening Beyond. It’s time to go Beyond on this new day.

Sojaa Sojaa another sweet lullaby with Indian origin allows us to rise for a new day. Very uplifting and bright like the sun coming up fully now over the horizon providing light and love. The power of the sun gives life and is eternal. Eternal power, eternal love, wishing us all a powerful new day filled with light and love. Let’s all keep dancing as our Mother Earth has greeted a new day in our time and space. This is the opportunity to choose love and light. Seize the day and make it light and loving!

Mountain blessings is a further invitation sent from the distant corners of our galaxy to every human being on this planet. An intense crescendo is the wake-up call our world needs now. Regula Curti’s call from the mountaintop to humankind of all sorts all around the world cannot be overheard. This is the master’s invitation to get up and join the choir. No longer can we depend on others to save us. Instead, through music, let your heart open up and join the lightworkers to change the world for the better today. We were given a new day, but we also have to mobilize every person to contribute something to everlasting world peace.

The current challenges are too great for a few to bear. We need every voice, every opinion, every tradition, every trace, every culture, every language, every mind and every heart to join for a better tomorrow.

Lama Chenno feels, once again, very soothing, a Tibetan mantra that provides safety, regularity, and peace. Like a mother figure letting me know that everything is going to be all right even if it might not seem so at the moment. We, the human race, progress and evolve, but we certainly face uncertainty on the path to peace. Yet, as learned previously, mantras provide comfort along the way.

One soul is the reminder we need now. Opening drums invite the listener to join the dance of life. The blending voices of different cultures and religions remind us that we are all here in all our different shapes, shades, customs and beliefs yet we are all one from one soul. All of us contribute to the diversity in our world we live in. No one is inferior or superior. We are all one. The comparison to a chain like a necklace or a bracelet comes easy here. Each part connects with one before and one after. Each part is not just important for the whole peace. Each part is required so much so that the whole piece would not hold together without every single tiny part.

 Two Loves and Caritas Abundat are the last but not least reminders that we need to open our hearts to others. Yes, another being might be less familiar even unknown. Yes, it is possible to learn compassion for others no matter what the history, the background, the origin. Serving as reminders that we all one heart, one soul, one universe. Unconditional love is all there is and so I feel it in me, in you, around me, around you, for you, and for me, to the stars and back to Mother Earth and all there is. Love is all there is, ever was and ever will be. I feel compassion and love as I look into your eyes, fellow human being. I know I am guided on my path to peace by the angels of the universe. Heaven is not a place far away that we might see one day. Heaven is here right now. And so, it is. Amen.

Gone Beyond

As the journey of Awakening Beyond comes to an end, we step through the door and discover that this journey has just begun. Our Mother Earth teacher Anna Mae Bullock (Tina Turner) once again invites us to follow her voice. I listen closely to her heartwarming voice; Anna Mae teaches us that we have gone beyond. The music has changed us as we are not the same as before. The music we have listened to has made us feel comfortable. A beautiful journey through diverse religions and cultures has opened my heart even more. I feel calmer now, softer now, like the sound of the ringing of soft bells, I feel more compassion filling my heart even to the unfamiliar and new. As I realize that we are indeed all one. I thank God for our Earth Mother. I can listen to her voice forever. Strong yet soft, empowering yet comforting. A true gift from the great Beyond. I indeed have gone Beyond. Let Earth Mother Anna Mae keep guiding you with her eternal wisdom and spiritual messages. Try chanting with her.  It changed her life and can also do wonders for yours. It can change our world for the better. This is our time to do exactly that. We can have a better world. A more peaceful world. A more loving, compassionate, forgiving world. But it is also up to us!

One more time Regula Curti closes the circle back to previous Beyond projects with Kyrei Eleison Christe Eleison. Indeed, Lord have mercy, Christ have mercy. The last invitation follows. As was said before, we are completely gone, in the beyond now. The focus here for me is the now. We are in the Beyond right now! The journey of Awakening Beyond has brought us closer to compassion, forgiveness and unconditional love for others. We are gone. Gone in the Beyond. What that means for me is that there is no way back. Once in the Beyond, I must stay here. This is heaven; this is Nirvana; this is enlightenment. It is not a realm distant from us. It is right here. But it also takes our contribution. The world we live in can be a very beautiful place of peace and freedom for all religions and cultures in which we enrich each other’s lives by teaching each other instead of fighting against each other and exclude each other.

Keep singing

I certainly don’t have the solution to all the problems in our world. However, I do believe that each of us can contribute something for a more peaceful, loving, and forgiving world. As the beautiful Beyond sisters have taught us over and over: Keep singing and go Beyond. Listen to the Beyond projects and try to emulate the same compassion, tolerance, unconditional love and forgiveness they have articulated through song and voice. Our world is very blessed for their continuous efforts and contributions. Please support their projects and their foundations. Our world is already a little better. With gratitude, I close my review. With gratitude, I bow once again and thank the great Beyond for all founders, artists, producers, designers, and so many more. Through music and prayer, the Beyond projects enchant and uplift our homes, commutes, communities, and world. My life is not the same as it was before the Beyond projects.

I have gone beyond. I hope you have too or will soon.

With gratitude and the hope for a better tomorrow.



Barbara Bullock

Copyright © 2018 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer

Have you been inspired today?

Work cited:

Awakening Beyond

Edition Beyond Singing, Switzerland, administrated by BMG

℗ and © Edition Beyond Singing, 2017

Photo credit: Edition Beyond Singing, eyeworks, Zurich (graphic design), Nathan Beck, Knoepfel Indlekofer

#RegulaCurti #TinaTurner #AniChoying #DimaOrsho #SawaniShendeSathaye #MorKarbasi

#beyond #beyondmusic #singing #sing #song #spirituality #tolerance #compassion #love #unconditionallove #peace #chant #prayer #beyondfoundation #religion #cultures #chanting #review #album


Posted in album, Angels, anichoying, Artist, awakening, beyond, beyondfoundation, beyondmusic, chant, Compassion, cultures, dimaorsho, Divine, morkarbasi, peace, regulacurti, religion, sawanishendesathaye, singing, song, TinaTurner, tolerance | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

What about the next morning?

Keep shining after the holiday

Millions of people celebrated at least several holidays in recent months. From Halloween to Thanksgiving, from Christmas to Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, New Year’s Eve, and Valentine’s Day, these past months were filled with months of celebrations and the sharing of light and love. Many people around the world visited beloved families and friends, spent time off for relaxation and travel, followed holiday traditions, and prepared the most delicious dishes of the entire year. During the holiday season, many of us give thanks for the blessings received throughout the year and pray for more good fortune in the coming year.

During these cheerful moments, we make toasts looking into our loved ones’ eyes showing them our appreciation of their presence, drink, eat, and celebrate the good times of our lives. During these months of celebration and homecomings, many of us become very charitable as well, perhaps even more so than at other times during the year. Larger tips are given to people who serve us every day, money is donated to charities, food and clothes are shared with the homeless making sure they too have a cozy stay. There seems to be more kindness and unconditional love in the air during these times. We pick up a book that the person in front of us dropped; we give a smile to a child; we ask the store clerk how his or her family is doing. I could write a long list here. I am certain that you would have a long one too.

What about the next morning?

What about when the holiday season is over? What about the day after the holiday? Being cheerful, loving, and charitable during the holidays is not difficult. Who does not love celebrating and sharing a little bit of that bliss with others? The challenge begins the next morning. I believe that we are here on this planet Earth to love and be loved. I believe that we are here to make the best of our lives and enjoy the good times. I believe that many of us are blessed beyond our own needs in order to share our wealth with those less fortunate. Yes, holidays are meant to be celebrated. Houses are wonderful when decorated. Holiday meals and special foods not cooked every day are certainly among my favorites. I love holidays and celebrating. I think most people do. However, what about the next morning?

What about the day after the holiday when the party guests have gone home, leftovers stored in the fridge, candles are blown out, the music turned off, gifts put away, wrapping paper thrown out, and lights taken down? It is easy to share with others and celebrate with people we care about. Human beings have celebrated and followed holiday traditions for probably thousands of years. Humanity is sharing with and caring for others. Real humanity is doing so when the party is over. The real message here is to keep celebrating after the holiday.

The next morning, continue sharing your smile with the person next to you. The next morning, keep donating your food, clothes, or money. The next morning, keep donating your time by volunteering for a good cause important to you.  Keep caring about others. Take someone in who needs shelter, a warm meal and someone who listens. Be the friend anyone can count on in times of need and in times of cheer. Pick up what the person in front of you dropped with a smile. Ask the janitor how his or her weekend was. Give what you can to others. Share your holiday joy after the holiday. Keep celebrating life not because it’s a holiday but because it’s the next morning so that we never have to ask ourselves again what the world will look like after the holidays. If we all do our part of sharing and caring, just as during the traditional holidays, love is in the air everywhere and – every day of the year. Keep shining with your hearts once the holiday lights are turned off for the season.




Copyright © 2018 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer

Photo credit © 2017 by Barbara Bullock. Photo taken in Kuesnacht, Switzerland December 2017.

#blog #writer #holiday #tradition #christmas #hannukah #kwanzaa #valentinesday #celebration #love #charity #donating #donation #humanity #caring #next #morning #light #lights

Posted in caring, celebration, donating, donation, hannukah, kwanzaa, next, party, tradition, valentinesday | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The real souvenir


A selection of souvenirs from around the world

When I travel to other countries, I buy a lot of souvenirs. But not only the kind you would expect. You probably have been to another town, city, state, country or continent at least once in your life. If not, perhaps you have been a tourist in your own town visiting a famous site or discovering a place you had never been before.

Traditional souvenirs, the kind that has the name and perhaps a picture of the landmark, the city, state, or country imprinted, can be found everywhere. Souvenir shops are plenty around famous sites attracting almost every visitor and making it hard to leave without purchasing at least one item. I used to buy a lot of refrigerator magnets, which, many years ago, were more popular in the United States than other countries. Now they can be found everywhere. About twenty years ago, I started a collection buying one in each state I visited. I would return home and place them on my refrigerator. My first intention was to visit all 50 states. I had to because I wanted a magnet of each one of them. I did not want to ask other people to bring me one because that would have not been the same as visiting myself. Then I stopped collecting.

Although I have been fortunate to set foot on about half of the United States so far, I don’t believe I will visit each of the 50 states in this lifetime. I also have been lucky to visit many other countries of the world and once tried to create a map of all my trips. Knowing that my world map will likely never be complete, I stopped collecting magnets and counting states and countries. No offense, but, over the years, I have also come to prefer more useful souvenirs that I can actually use later on,  such as a mug for example. I also take on average a thousand photos during a weeklong trip. I love capturing the moment engraving it in our physical world to last at least a lifetime. Like the contents of a time capsule, such souvenirs are meant to serve as a reminder of a trip, an adventure, a vacation long gone no matter how many or few countries and states you visit.

Yes, I buy physical souvenirs wherever I go in the world. I also like buying clothes, food, and other things that people enjoy there. I love the variety that these things bring into my life instead of relying on local goods only. Bringing back everyday items feels like bringing a little of the everyday life of that place with me. My favorite souvenir, however, is something immaterial.

In addition, I fill my suitcase with memories. These recollections are intangible but last for eternity, longer than any magnet or mug. The experiences made on the trip such as sounds, scents, sights, and sensations, are imprinted in memory forever. They can never be destroyed, forgotten, discarded or left in clutter. Besides, whenever I find myself wishing to go on my next trip but find myself unable to go on one at that moment, I can recall these kinds of souvenirs whenever and wherever I like. I can always count on my memories of travels past whenever I feel like traveling again or long for a place I have visited.

Memories evoke a kind of gratitude that allows me to be thankful for these journeys and experiences. As you probably know, feeling gratitude in your heart makes you feel better, life in the moment, and look forward to your next adventure all at the same time. I hope that you will make many memories that you can cherish for eternity and hold on to until your next trip wherever it might take you.




Copyright © 2018 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer

Photo credit © 2018 by Barbara Bullock

#travelling #travel #souvenir #memories #homesick #blog #writer #country #foreign #feelings #trip #memory #journey #magnet #unitedstates #america #usa #visit #world #tourism #vacation

Posted in america, blog, country, foreign, homesick, journey, magnet, memories, memory, souvenir, unitedstates, usa, visit, world | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The dream of a wealthy world

I dream of a wealthy world.

Money is not everything. You probably have heard this phrase repeatedly. Perhaps you believe it and live by it. It is true that many beautiful things in life are actually free of charge. It is also correct that many things cannot be bought with money nor do they have to. Our Mother Earth supplies us with everything we need. True love, friendship, and compassion and more cannot be bought with any known currency. Nevertheless, I do believe in and dream of a wealthy world with lots and lots of money in it. Let me explain.

I grew up in a blue-collar family and neighborhood. Rarely did I experience or see anything that most people would call rich or wealthy in a monetary sense. I am talking about millionaires living a luxurious lifestyle. Truth be told, I only saw them on television. I was probably the biggest fan of the most popular soap operas of the 80s and 90s that portrayed wealthy families owning real estate, wineries, oil companies, multi-million dollar corporations and the like. I always loved marveling at their mansions, luxury cars, fancy clothes, and diamonds. I was so fascinated by the characters and stories that I would watch these shows over and over again.

I was so absorbed in the scenes that I almost forgot where I was. I was in my wealthy world. While I enjoyed watching the luxuries, I also understood that with such riches so much good in the world can be done. As I learned about giving, tilting, charity, and philanthropy, I started loving the idea of being wealthy myself. Ever since I was old enough to grasp the difference between rich, middle class and poor, I wanted more out of my life for this reason. From the time when I was a little girl, I wanted to help others, especially less fortunate people.

When I look around today, I see much wealth and luxury. I have also been very fortunate to enjoy it every once in a while. However, I also see a lot of poverty and need. It pains my heart that many children will die of hunger in their mother’s arms while you read this and while tons and tons of food are thrown away. It is unimaginable for me that millions of people don’t have warm clothes and shoes to wear, no homes to come home to, no education accessible to them to better themselves and so many other things that are quite affordable today.

This is why I dream of a wealthy world. This is why I dream of a wealthy me. I dream of being able to share what I have with the less fortunate. The more money I make, the more I can share. I dream of having my own foundation some day. I dream of a world free of poverty. In this sense, money is almost everything. This is my dream world. This is my dream of a wealthy world.




Copyright © 2017 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer

Photo credit © 2017 by Pixabay

#wealth #money #income #charity #giving #philanthropy #sharing #tilting #poverty #foundation

Posted in income, philantrophy, tilting, wealth | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How to stay calm when the train suddenly stops


Many years ago or today, train travel is an adventure

Finally, you are on your long awaited summer vacation. Finally, you are on the road getting away from stress and annoyances back home. You look forward to visiting a new destination, your family and friends, or getting pampered in a luxury hotel. Suddenly, your trip does not seem to turn out the way you had hoped. What are you going to do now? Here is my experience and point of view on how to stay calm when the train suddenly stops.

This summer, I was on my way from Vienna, Austria to Zurich, Switzerland, Milan, and Venice, Italy. I had traveled this route many times over. This time I chose to take the train. I looked forward to enjoying beautiful sights, being enchanted by magnificent scenery of majestic mountains, valleys, and prairies through panoramic windows of a modern high speed train, and enjoying upscale service from my first-class seat. What might seem an amazing train trip, came with a few travel problems.

After about three hours of train travel, the train staff announced that our train could not continue for the time being. A cargo train had lost its load on the tracks. In addition, for some inexplicable reason, our train would not have priority over other high speed trains traveling to certain destinations. We were literally stuck in a train station in southern Germany. I have always liked Germany, so why not spend some time there, right? Finally, after two hours of waiting, we moved again. Understandably, many passengers, most of all those who had connections to catch, started to get very worried about the two-hour delay our train had accumulated. About an hour later, we arrived in Innsbruck.

In Innsbruck, the next announcement was made. Apparently, our train was broken, and we all had to get off. At first, many passengers, including me and my company, did not believe the news and stayed on the train. As the train emptied more and more, I realized that, no, this was no joke. What happened next is the most inspiring moment on this entire journey.

During summer time when many passengers from all around the world travel together, various cultures and people were represented on that particular train. As you know, differences among mindsets can be great including handling problems in life, and in this case, on the train. A man got very upset and started yelling at innocent, unknowing personnel at the train station. A couple panicked over how they would catch their connections once in Zurich. Others, including me, swore never to take the train again. Then a group of American tourists came. Three generations traveling through Europe. Their leader did the only logical and efficient thing to do. Remaining calm, he went online and checked what time the next train would go out of the station of Innsbruck towards Zurich. Returning with the information that the next train would leave an hour later, he had dealt with the problem for all of us. I felt inspired by his rational approach of solving a complicated situation. No anger or panic needed.

Needless to say, I changed my mind over train travel. No need to get upset. No need to stop traveling by train. Next time your train stops unexpectedly, take a deep breath. Go to the information counter and check when the next train leaves for your destination. You’ll solve the problem for yourself and many others so all can be on the way to their destinations again.

Happy travels,



Copyright © 2017 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer

Photo credit © 2017 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A. Photo taken by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A.

#travel #train #traveling #trip #vacation #problem #issues  #inspiration #tourist #group #groupleader #inspiring #Vienna #Zurich #Austria #Switzerland #American

Posted in american, austria, group, groupleader, inspiration, inspring, issues, problem, tourist, trainride, travel, traveling, vienna | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

You are already approved

blog july 2017

          I am sure you can relate to this. Throughout our lives, we fill out numerous forms. Most of you have likely submitted countless applications, resumes/CVs, cover letters, and references in hopes of being among the few lucky ones making it through the first round of screening hoping not to be tossed into the garbage can right away. Many of you have submitted samples of your writing, articles, book proposals, lyrics, screenplays, poems, photographs or similar artistic work in anticipation that someone – anyone really – would discover your creative side. Many of you likely have applied for loans, and various forms of financial aid in hopes that someone would trust you with more money so you can make your next dream come true or, at least, pay your open bills if nothing more. In any case, it’s all about some sort of approval. At least most people think so.

            Once you have added even more copies to your already overflowing document folder, all you can do is hope (and perhaps pray) and whatever you have just applied for, will be approved. Time seems to stop while you wait anxiously by the telephone checking your mailbox several times a day. Day after day, no response. The waiting game begins. “Should I follow up?” you might be asking yourself. “Can I ask whether they even received my application? What if my forms got forwarded to the wrong department?” In our administrative, complicated world, these are justified questions of course. Papers, forms, documents, get filed wrongly or forgotten. Clerks are out the office or change positions having your file sit on their desks. Your analytical mind likely goes through all possible scenarios while you wait for your approval.

            Days turn into weeks; weeks turn into months; you are still waiting. What are you waiting for? “Approval” you might say. Let me tell you something. You are already wanted. You are already appreciated. You are already approved. The kind of approval I would like to remind you is that you are not the person with a name on the form, letter, or document. You are more than your work experience, education, circumstances, status, income, and address.

            You are already approved. When you were born into this world as the person you are today, you came from a beautiful place many call heaven, the spirit world, universal intelligence, higher self, or God. It is no coincidence that you were born and are here right now on our planet Earth. This higher realm makes no mistakes. You are here because you have a purpose here. You are talented. You are intelligent. You are needed and valuable. Look at a beautiful flower. You are perfect just like the flower. You are the right fit. You are wonderful. You came from the same place as the seed of a beautiful flower. No approval needed. You are already approved. I am glad you are here.



Copyright © 2017 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A., spiritual writer

Photo credit © 2017 by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A. Photo taken by Barbara Bullock, M.F.A.

#approval #approved #selfconfidence #confidence #application #job #resume #cv #spirit #heaven #perfection

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment