Celebrating our 20th - The TAC Story
Celebrating our 20th – The TAC Story
By Gord Riddell & Kathy Ryndak
This year we joyously celebrate the 20th Anniversary of Transformational Arts College. What an incredible, transformational journey it has been as I, Kathy, recall two decades of being of service for the spiritual and holistic community. In part, it reminds me of the lyrics from the Beatle’s song, “Roll up, step right this way, for the magical, mystery tour.” I would like to share some excerpts from the chapters of the TAC story with you to commemorate this milestone.
Deep Soul Connection
I met co-founder Gord Riddell in 1986 at another spiritual centre where we were both on the board of directors and he was president. When I first met Gord I knew we would embark upon a profound spiritual journey together given the strong resonance of our energies together and a deep soul connection. Unexpectedly, a couple of years later, we were not reelected at the annual board meeting due to philosophical differences. While it was upsetting to lose the board position, I knew it was an important sign that we were meant to create a unique spiritual venture together. This ‘cloud’ had a great fortuitous silver lining. It turned out to be the biggest gift I have ever received from the universe.
We started out very small in 1988 with many challenges to overcome. The first year we made less than our rent! Fortunately, we were freed from of our lease and were guided to take our classes into our own homes to ride out the recession of 1990/91. Our intention, desire and perseverance were so great that we were able to grow during the recession. We grew by leaps and bounds and became a College in 1998 recognized by the federal and provincial governments.
Current of Transformation
When the name of your school has the word ‘transformation’ in it you have to be prepared to follow and live up to its powerful energy. Riding the current of transformation is definitely stimulating with many twists and turns on the road – some expected and many unexpected. The path is chock-full of surprises and miracles as you commit to stepping into the mystery. You have to transform and change as you move along and insisting upon maintaining the existing status quo will not work. Obstacles and blocks need to be overcome as you keep on recreating and fine-tuning your vision.
The College much surpassed our original expectations and intentions. It is wonderful when your vision manifests into something grander than you initially conceived. This is the law of attraction in motion. We are a living, breathing template for spiritual education developed by focusing intention, holding a vision and the art of co-creating and manifesting with the Divine. We were able to create abundance and prosperity from a shoe-string budget for which we are eternally grateful.
The school has been my greatest teacher with many lessons that were downright difficult. They were the raw material or fodder for my own spiritual transformation. On the way, I have met many people who were catalysts for my own inner growth. My most challenging relationships were the ones that evolved my soul the most. When you are in a spiritual leadership role the lessons come almost too quickly. Just as you catch your breath and another lesson comes your way to master. Being in a spiritual partnership is like a marriage which comes with much learning. It only survives if you are willing to do the work. Gord, definitely, has been an incredible stimulus in my soul’s transformation.
Chakra, College Mascot
In 1993, the universe brought me one of the greatest treasures of my lifetime - Chakra, my dog, who became the College’s mascot. Chakra has left an indelible imprint on the College touching so many souls who have attended our school. Chakra passed in late April after 15 years of a joyous and enchanting life. She has taught us about unconditional love, the joy of being and how to live in the present moment. When Chakra was in the classroom everyone’s magical child came out. This furry little angel, with such a magnanimous joy body, forever lives in our souls and is in the eternal essence of the College.
The process of alchemy or changing ‘leaden consciousness to gold’ has been awe-inspiring at the College. It is magic. TAC has transformed many times in the spirit of co-creation, like a snake sheds its skin or a chrysalis morphs into a butterfly. Even more wondrous is to have witnessed the spiritual growth and transformation of the thousands of students who have come from around the world to attend our school. I do need to tell you how amazing our students are. They are luminous spirits with souls of great depth who have full-heartedly embraced transformation, truth, love, light, joy and empowerment into their lives. So many of them have gone on to create successful practices and centres helping to make the world a better place.
History as a Backdrop
When I look back at the last 20 years I am in awe. When we first started the school being on a spiritual path was considered ‘fringe’ and now it has become acceptable to so many in mainstream society. So much in the world has also transpired with history in the making being our backdrop. We have watched our Beloved planet go through so much upheaval and transformation whether it has been the dismantling of the Berlin Wall, freedom from apartheid in South Africa, the AIDS pandemic, 9/11, terrorism, tsunamis, global warming and going green. The internet has allowed contemporary spirituality to burgeon and expand. The planet is indeed in a healing crisis, yet as consciousness expands, so much opportunity for spiritual advancement exists.
It is has been extremely rewarding and fulfilling for me to co-pilot this engaging vision with Gord. It has been so much fun to be pioneers and trailblazers on this magical mystery tour. There has been no limit to our passion, inspiration and creativity. The ‘downloads’ from the Divine have been endless, guiding us along the way. There have been many sublime moments of bliss and joy through connecting to the Divine current and the wonders of the universe.
Most importantly, there is no greater honour and privilege than the opportunity to be of service to humankind. It is my dream that as we navigate through transitional, spiritual energies and this critical moment in history, humanity will emerge as the Sacred Human. With great gratitude, we thank all faculty and staff members, current and past students and Vitality magazine for whom we have been writing for since 1991!
We look towards the future with great excitement and anticipation as many more wondrous chapters in this book unfold. We welcome all to walk the luminous path of self-discovery, healing and transformation at the Transformational Arts.