To nurture a soulful, creative life that is of benefit to others we need to reconnect tenderly with our wild soul. We need to create a loving, open, nonjudgmental space for our tender parts to gain footing and courage. We need to create a clear path for the flow of Spirit through our lives.   - Annie, 2003

Who are We and What is a Soul Flare?

"We" are a small group of people who believe in the power of small things, the ripple effect of being a person in the world who is fully lit with his or her own Essence and wiling to let that shine and inspire others. Two of us currently promote this work while two others make up our board of directors. I am the founder and president who is rejoicing in the opportunity to collaborate with Kelly Ulrich, an inspiring person, brilliant light and kindred soul who has decided to join me in furthering the Soul Flares mission. This year we are working together to offer a series of Heart Speak circles in Burlington, Vermont and exploring other ways we can be of service to the community using the Heart Speak model.

The term "Soul Flares" was inspired by an essay by Clarissa Pinkola Estes called, "Letter to a Young Activist During Troubled Time" in which she writes:

The light of the soul throws sparks, can send up flares, builds signal fires, causes proper matters to catch fire. To display the lantern of soul in shadowy times like these—to be fierce and to show mercy toward others, both, are acts of immense bravery and greatest necessity. Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it. If you would help to calm the tumult, this is one of the strongest things you can do. To read the entire essay visit here.

Specifically, a "soul flare" is any act of kindness, creation, expression that comes from our true nature, from an undefended state of presence. Soul flares are created by people who dive deep inside themselves, beyond the layers of fear and the judgment, to find and to offer their beauty to the world—no matter how small—a smile, a song, a beautiful painting, an act of kindness. No special degree is required to make a difference in this world, no training or special gift—the world will be changed by the daily, accumulated acts of kindness and beauty.

ws_4_boys.jpgSoul Flares was born out of the belief that the change we need to see in the world begins inside each of us as a small light —as this "soul flare" waiting to be expressed. This is our true nature. When we dissolve the boundaries that separate us from our truth and beauty, from each other and from nature we create the conditions for positive change, in ourselves and in the world around us. Motivated by love instead of fear or shame, we become a collective force for good. 

Soul Flares currently serves over 5,000 people who are trying to be part of this collective force for good, but who often feel outside of a one specific group, spiritual practice or religion (althouth many have found and are committed to one path.) Soul Flares supporters do not fit into any mold. They are: religious, agnostic, spiritual, realists, dreamers, new age, conservative, liberal, highly educated and hardly educated, male and female, young and old, rich and poor. But..they are curious, openminded, willing to open their hearts. and wanting to live purposeful, soulful lives in service of something greater than themselves.

For more information about Annie visit here.

Our work at Soul Flares was inspired by people like Rosa Parks who wrote: “I will no longer act on the outside in a way that contradicts the truth that I hold deeply on the inside. I will no longer act as if I were less than the whole person I know myself to be." With one humble act of courage, Rosa showed the world the power of shining the light of her own truth. I founded Soul Flares and continue to offer what I can through it as a reminder to myself and others that such "humble acts of courage" change the world.

Annie_09-.jpgPlease enjoy this website. If you have interest in posting new content, and have good tech instincts please let me know at annie(at)

Blessings and Love,


Annie O'Shaughnessy
Founder of Soul Flares, a 501(3)c nonprofit .