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My Story

by Dragana Van de Moortel-Ilic

Chiron and healing journey

1. Before the storm
2. The beginning of the end
3. Meeting Chiron
4. The translation - living on the high heels
5. Stopping with the translation - the hell
6. The healing - back to the normal life
7. The baby is born


1. Before the storm

Let me introduce myself first: born in Kikinda, a small historical town in Vojvodina (northern province of Serbia), as a child very disciplined and ambitious, good in natural sciences and literature, raised in the country which looked ideal to me. Powerful president Tito, with the famous sentence "Every country which has young people like we should not fear for it's future", beautiful nature from the Alps via the Adriatic Sea and Danube, to the warm lakes of Ohrid or Dojran... Can someone need more? I was happy to grow up in such a progressive and rich country, in Yugoslavia.

In 1988, being for a long time occupied with astrology, I realized that Pluto just came into my forth house. In this year as an au-pair I lived with a rich Jewish family in north London and, yes, I connected the influence of Pluto with the power of this family, some other world, which, luckily, was in tune with mine. In this period of time I watched on TV the "yoghurt revolution" in Novi Sad, the city where I graduated in chemistry and which later became my resident place. Many people on the street protested against the autonomy of our rich province Vojvodina and wanted to melt with central Serbia. A surprise to me because Vojvodina was always a very specific part of Serbia. Before WW1 it was a piece of the Austro-Hungarian monarchy. Multicultural, calm, peaceful. "Who is this Milosevic who became a very popular politician in Serbia? He obviously finds many people who are rather nationalistic." - someone asked me. On TV in London I followed a report about hundreds of thousands of people who loudly supported his sentence: "Nobody may touch you any more!" (as the answer to Serbian people living in Kosovo who claimed that Albanians terrorized them and forced them to immigrate from Kosovo to central Serbia). "I do not know. Never heard about him." - I answered to the question honestly, looking at the strange reports from Serbia.


In the beginning of 1989 I returned to Novi Sad and started to work at the university as a research assistant. This had always been my dream, to do something useful on a high level, and the synthesis of new medications in a group of enthusiastic and intelligent people, with the leadership of a man with a vision, Prof. Miljkovic, was the realization of this dream. When in May 1989 I went to our flat on the Croatian coast to rest a bit alone, one of my Croatian friends from this village came immediately to visit me, obviously worrying about me. "Go directly back to Novi Sad, do not play with your life!" - he told me without even greeting me. "What is it? Why should I go? I came as always, to walk along the beach, to breath some fresh air. Hey, kiss first with me, say welcome, relax, rather than explain your silly paranoia!" - I tried to calm him down because he was nearly shaking from angst. "Did you fall from Mars, or don't you really know anything? People here are seriously trained for the war, there are solders everywhere! And you are Serb!" This was a real culmination. "And then? Should I go back to Serbia because I am Serb and not enjoy in our personal flat next to this wonderful sea, where I spent the most beautiful part of my life?" - I started to be angry, considering that we are all Yugoslavs.

He suddenly calmed down, understanding that I really do not know anything. He sat next to me, took my hands in the most friendly way and started to explain: "Dragana, you know that we have been friends for more than 20 years. You know that I love you as a sister and that I respect your family. Like your best friend I recommend you to go away because nothing is as before any more. People from your side (Serbia) threaten my people (Croatia) with war, and they are both crazy. There are serious weapons everywhere and the moment can come when I will have to go to the war and maybe shoot to your brother! You come here alone and you provoke those extreme people from here and it is safer for you to go home immediately. I tell this to you because I love you and I do not want you to be surprised or attacked." His eyes filled with tears and I started to understand that he was deadly serious and that I definitely had no idea what was going on. We did not speak any more, just gave the last hug, holding each other firmly, at once knowing that this can be the last time that we were together. He followed me to the bus and I went back.

From this moment I started to look around me. Yes, definitely, things changed. I spent a lot of time at the university, making my Master thesis, and, hidden in the mysterious atmosphere of the laboratory, like real alchemists, we had a lot of discussions about the situation in the country, hoping that we, with our discoveries, could help to improve the situation. There was some heavy uncertainty around, the news on TV started to sound threatening and polarized to only one side.

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2. The beginning of the end

Then, things started to develop very quickly. Our salaries at the university became so small that I had to leave the job. On the other hand, people started to ask me to do their horoscopes and I decided to do it professionally. I also enrolled the Faculty of Astrological Studies because I wanted to do it on a high professional level. The situation in the country went out of control and my understanding. During the night I could hear shooting in Vukovar, Croatia. I went to the Radio Novi Sad thinking that people have to understand that everything can be looked at from many sides, I spoke about Saturn in Aquarius and Pluto in Scorpio which could be used in a positive way, and that we have to be open to positive thinking and new solutions. Someone wanted a direct telephone contact and in the program thousands of people listened how some desperate man from one shelter in Vukovar gave all compliments to my wise speech and asked me if he would survive (we heard also a very loud shooting).

In April 1992 female members of my family from Mostar, Herzegovina, came to my parents' house and I gave my room and all my clothes to them. My world started to fall down and I understood that I could not follow all deaths and blood on TV, listening on the foreign news how Serbian people are the bad side and seeing thousands of desperate Serbs coming as a flood to Vojvodina. Everywhere were pain and desperation. This "Serbian aggression" I couldn't see anywhere around me even if I observed terrible things that happened. I became hopeless and decided to go to London, to settle down there, study the FAS and then see what I had to do. I felt like a ghost which had no connection any more with reality, somehow I lost my identity and the only firm piece of land I could step on was London. Looking out from the train which was leaving the station in Novi Sad I noticed new thousands of desperate people and my tears could not be controlled any more. In this moment Pluto from my 4th house started to make a square with my Sun; Chiron was in Cancer going into my 12th house and I felt such a deep grief, being completely overwhelmed by it, not thinking any more, just feeling such terrible sorrow…

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3. Meeting Chiron

London again. The same buses, taxies, buildings. I felt at home, my friends opened their doors for me and said that I could stay in their home as long as I wanted. I was still like a ghost. I communicated, even laughed, but I was not really present. I realized that I needed help to recover myself. Of course, because I believed in astrology, I made an appointment with a respected British astrologer. She was friendly and nice but I sat as a mummy not being able to say where was my problem. I invested an enormous lot of energy to stop my tears and, luckily, she was enough experienced not to force anything. "Did you hear about Chiron?" - she asked me carefully. "What is it?" - she finally could hear my voice. "A planetoid, connected with wounds, who don't not have to be physical. In your horoscope, Chiron has a close conjunction with your Jupiter in Pisces in the 7th house, all making a trine with your Scorpio Neptune on the IC. The pain connected with your roots, father, country… Can you tell me something about it?" "My father is a psychiatrist, not an easy person, and country, you see, actually I have no country any more..." - a curiosity about Chiron helped me to melt. I spent 6 months in London and recovered a lot. I met this charming lady several times, learning about the inability of my Mercury in Virgo to say simple words if I feel too much hurt, because it was squeezed between Uranus and Pluto and had an opposition with Chiron.

Finally I decided to go back and fight, helping people to discover their own nature, to step back from the sad reality and in their own micro-world make the best they can. And God helped me. In Serbia I started to appear on TV "Novi Sad +" every second Saturday evening. This was a light program created to amuse a lot of people and I intertwined mythological stories with wise words of our religious people. I always tried to say something useful, to give a practical message to the people in difficulties, still not touching directly any politically sensitive theme's. Healing myself, trying to express my thinking by words, I tried to heal the others as well. I gave lectures to local astrologers about Chiron because they also never heard of him. Thousands of clients passed through my small flat in Petrovaradin, the oldest part of Novi Sad, and I learned a lot about the difficult reality of the new life there.

Chiron. He started to penetrate deeper and deeper in my mind. Obviously, there was no book in Serbian which talked about him, and his influence was so obvious there. I went regularly to London and someone there recommended a book about Chiron written by Melanie Reinhart. I bought it and read it in a few days, nearly not sleeping before I had seen the last page of the book. Accidentally, I noticed that Melanie was to give a lecture in Caledonian Road and, of course, I wanted to meet her personally. "This is Melanie." - John from the astrological shop showed me. "So natural. Like a nymph." - I thought, looking at a mysterious women who managed to write such a book. I was thinking about old Serbian folk stories about nymphs who live in woods, who always have long hair and help to people that are lost showing them the way out and healing their wounds if there were wounded. Our eyes met each other. "Excuse me, may I introduce myself?" - I asked her. "I come from Serbia and I would be so proud if I could translate this wonderful book into Serbian." We started a conversation and she explained to me that I had to ask Penguin Books for the translation rights and that she would contact them to introduce me.

The whole process with the rights was easy. I had to pay the sum they told me and I could sign the contract: I was so happy to see that I had full 18 months time, more than enough. My friend Jane Rachael Malcolmson, who came from London to Novi Sad to teach in my astrological school (not asking any teaching fee), organised the money transfer through her VISA card because I could not do any foreign payment from Serbia. The deadline was somewhere in autumn 1998.

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4. The translation - living on high heels

The translation began much slower than I thought. Without any experience in translating a book of this size, I did not realize that there were nearly 400 pages to translate and that this was a lot of work. Before, I translated many texts from science for my university work, also many texts from the FAS for my own use and I was quite confident in translation, but such a lot of work... I asked my friend Olivera Jankovic from Belgrade, who had lived in America and spoke good English, to help me, for a friendly price, but she did not have a computer, so I had to type her texts, which meant more time... Still, in 1997, during my frequent appearance on Channel 3 in Belgrade, I had to travel regularly there and I could collect the texts from Lela and in the evening type them in the computer. Because I had to work with my clients (from students to high artists, scientists and politicians) I could translate only late in the evenings and sometimes in the weekends. By autumn 1997 a large part of the book was already translated and I have to emphasise that I had the most interesting period in all of the '90s. This was not only connected with the book, although I knew that I was doing the right thing and that people from there would read the wise words of Melanie and understand and heal their own pain. In my personal life I met constantly very interesting people, from highly spiritual people, artists, enthusiasts who saw the world in an original way to alternative healers. Rachael came constantly from London to help me in my work. I felt loved and respected, absolutely not isolated, even if I was aware that the surrounding was quite dangerous. On TV I constantly cheered up the people trying to move away their concentration from the isolation of Serbia, criminality, change of morality, desperation.

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5. Stopping with the translation - the hell

The fatal year of my life, 1998, started with warnings. The isolation of Serbia became more unbearable, more people started to feel nervous. Someone from TV told me discretely that I should stop temporarily with my appearance: "You will understand the situation, England is also guilty for the sanctions against Serbia, and you are an English student..." They did not have to tell me this twice, I was aware of it and I stopped, and some strange fear started to surround me. I looked in my horoscope and noticed that some strange combination of transits was going to come: Jupiter was on the way to make a conjunction with my Chiron/Jupiter conjunction and Pluto from the 4th would make a square to my Jupiter-Pluto opposition. "What can happen with it?" - I was thinking. I knew about many sides of Pluto and Chiron but still, if I had to experience such energies on my own skin, I was not relaxed completely, even if I knew astrology...

Then, I was invited to go to Mostar. I knew about the war in Bosnia and Herzegovina, I had already seen different programs about all the destruction, and I thought that I could not be surprised. All those years I saw many refugees and heard their distressing stories, but I personally did not see the war. My bus went through Bosnia. Destroyed houses, poor people, no laugh. We came to Sarajevo and because the bus came from Serbia, it could only go to the station of the Bosnian Serbs. My uncle was supposed to wait for me a bit further because he arrived by car from the Croatian part of Mostar and he couldn't park on the Serbian part. Someone told me: "If your uncle doesn't come, you can easily go to the Muslim part of Mostar by bus, but you have to pay a taxi to drive you 500m further from the Serbian bus station to the Muslim bus station." (it was too dangerous to walk this way). Luckily, my uncle was there. He came with a friend and I saw the fear on his face because I came late, the day was on its end and it would be dark when we travelled. I knew that officially the war was stopped but I did not ask anything. We came to Mostar late, but without any problem. My family wished me welcome but they all had become much older. I realized that they had nearly no money to buy food for me, but being PROUD, they did not want to show it and they put everything they had on the table. I was absolutely not hungry, but being polite I ate and even tried to make jokes. They asked me to be firm and not completely shocked when I would see the town. "If you want to go to the Muslim part of Mostar, please go alone, we can not go with you. There are international troops there, it is safe, but we are not allowed to mix with the other part..." They did not have to explain to me. I was aware of the painful destruction of Mostar. I thought I was.

Before the war I spent a lot of time in Mostar. I knew that my friends had different religious roots, but who cared? I remember nights and nights when my friends, late in the evening, would follow me to the flat of my aunt singing songs for me. They would even come from Mostar to the village on the sea where we had a flat, find me somewhere after midnight, sing a few songs to me with a guitar, and go back to Mostar, 70 km far, while they had to work the next day early in the morning. I never felt any national problem there.

I breathed the air deeply in and stepped out, to the destroyed streets. Some buildings were still there, full with holes of shooting. I went to the streets which did not exist any more. Only burned ruins and my memory witnessed that this was a street full cafés and happy people, a long time ago. An invisible stink of death started to surround me. I started to feel the ghosts of the destruction and could not go further. I had no energy to see the ruins of the Old Bridge, I had a feeling that I would fall down if I would see more.
"We had such a difficult time here. I killed more than 100 Serbs with my hands."
"I hate Muslims. Even my mother because she is also Muslim."
I heard voices of people I ever considered as friendly, modern, without boundaries... There was a complete chaos in my head and I desperately needed a fresh air, a place where I can have a connection with God because there was no God there. I was sitting in the middle of hell and to those who never felt it I cannot explain how frightening and dangerous it was there, and certainly would never advise anyone to try it.

Medjugorje. The closest spiritual place to Mostar, where millions of Catholics come every year to pray because it is believed that the Virgin Mary appeared there. The right place for Her to preach about peace, I think... The church there was new and all those people who came to find some hope left a very visible, I would say healing energy. I took a bit of energy to go further.

The next stop is Cetinje, Montenegro. It was not easy to reach it; again because the buses went only to stations which belonged to the people of similar ethnic roots and in Mostar there were no Serbs any more, so I could not travel to the border with Montenegro which belonged to Bosnian Serbs. I managed to find the bus organized by UN troops, went to the border, then waited a few hours until someone passed by car and drove me to the first town where I could take a bus, and after nearly 10 hours of travel I reached Cetinje (around 100 km far from Mostar). In the old Orthodox monastery of Cetinje I fell on my knees before one of the most holy relics of Christianity, the hand of St. John the Baptist.
"Oh, God and all saints, please help those people! And help me to stay normal"
I was praying.

In the first night in my bed in Novi Sad all ghosts of death came back to me. I was so frightened that I was not able to move. The whole night I was reading the Bible, feeling the terrible pressure on my chest. "Am I becoming crazy?" - my rationality tried to find the explanation while I could sense horns and tails of evil creatures around me. I did not want to become overwhelmed by this terrible energy but "it" did not want to go away from me! The next few months I tried to work, and I did it correctly, also I translated a bit more of the book, but in the moment that I stayed alone without a serious occupation I was so nervous that I had to go out and walk, hoping that this pressure on my chest would leave me. I walked along the Danube, between two bridges which connected Petrovaradin and Novi Sad and I felt worse and worse. I was always fascinated with the beauty and power of this long river and it's deep water had a power to calm me down, but those months I felt so anxious looking at all the cars and people who passed those bridges...

By the end of April my translation was completely stopped.

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6. The healing - back to the normal life

"The light bodies are concentrated on many holy places. We find them in the whole world, from the old temples of Mayas to Thailand, but their closest dwelling place is the half-island Athos in Greece and there we will try through a deep meditation to integrate our light bodies with them. Through this process we receive a sort of code, which we need in our spiritual development which helps us to integrate and develop in our practical life... "

Ljubisa Stojanovic, a man who has a doctorate in alternative medicine from Russia, explained this, asking me to join his spiritual group on the trip to Greece. I did not have to think about it and at the end of May I appeared with closed eyes on the boat cruising around Athos. Soft and pleasant spring Sun, a little bit of wind, nice smell of the Mediterranean surrounding definitely helped me to relax, the first time after more than two months. I did not expect a miracle, but surprisingly enough, it happened! In the same evening in the hotel room I started to breath without this terrible tension on my chest. Not only this night, but never more this returned again! I was completely healed!!!

Even if I was completely aware that the situation in my country became worse and worse, personally I was not influenced by this any more. I was very worried but this summer I spent a wonderful time in Tunis, swimming in the warm sea and riding a camel in the Sahara... I started to notice that men were around me, that they laughed and could be interesting. I became a normal girl, full of life and joy. I started to laugh, too.

In August I had enough energy to go further with the translation and publishing of the book, but the atmosphere in the country was so full of tension that the selling of books nearly stopped, like all other trade. This was the worst moment to publish a new book and I gave up the project. Still, I managed to sell my flat in Petrovaradin, next to the military bases, and buy a house in the beginning of the national park Fruska Gora, a small mountain range full with old Orthodox monasteries. Moving the things from the old flat and driving many times along the military bases, looking at the solders which were also moving something, I was very aware of a presence of this frightening energy, but I was sure that "this" could not reach me any more.

"Serbia will be bombed, it is openly spoken about it in Belgium, come here and be safe!" my friend from the British astrological conferences Koen was shouting via the telephone.
"But, I am not afraid and I do not want to run away. If everyone stays under the bombs I can also do it!"
I tried to avoid a decision, knowing that my coming to Belgium would have to be connected with a personal relation with this man who started to come closer to my heart. Still, thinking more about the idea to go there I could find less and less reasons not to go.

"Do not avoid love, and you will never know if he is the right person for you if you do not try." - my friends advised me.

Everything further went without any force, like that God's hand was holding and leading me. In the time when the book was supposed to be published the Belgian embassy rejected my application for visa and Koen came immediately to Novi Sad. We married without having any relation before it, because this was the only way I could leave the country. Still, I was waiting next four months for the visa and left the country four days before the bombing.

The spring of 1999 was very challenging. On the one side, starting to know my husband and being really at once married, I had to adapt to this change. On the other side, listening the news I was days and nights under a terrible stress. So many lies on TV made me crazy! "Today was successfully destroyed the bridge in Petrovaradin, Novi Sad, which was the main route for the Serbian army to send tanks to attack Kosovo." - brainwashed the speaker talking about the small bridge next to my past neighbourhood which was 500 km far from Kosovo, which was used only by the local inhabitants and would definitely fall down if a few tanks would even try to pass over. And even if those few old tanks would try to go such a long journey they would not have to pass the bridge because Petrovaradin is already on the right side of the river.

" Many Serbs nurse a centuries-old anger toward the Moslem world because of the occupation of their land by the Ottoman Turks in the 13th century... as though they have ingested these archaic memories through their mothers' milk..." - even some famous astrologers spread over politically coloured opinions, being involved in anti-Serbia politics, not even checking in the history books that this was in the 15th century and indeed not trying to understand the archetype of the people from the Balkans, full of remembering of love and pain, passion and wars.

"Is it possible that the politics of nationalism and destruction on the territory of ex-YU is caused by the collective memory about the occupation by the Turks and the fact that they grabbed mostly Serbian but also Croatian male children from the nest of their parents, changed their religion and made the best Turkish army against Serbs and Croats?" - I asked the best known Belgian expert about the situation in the Balkans, professor Mon Detrez from the University of Ghent.
"Such a sentimental expression you can use for poetic texts, but the war is always connected with politics. If you know the interests of the big countries you will easily predict many wars, but this is very difficult and very sensitive." - he confirmed my opinions.

From the beautiful French cliffs where I would walk hand in hand with my husband I would run to the anti-war demonstrations in Brussels. I still could not understand why Novi Sad had to be bombed 77 days, with all bridges destroyed, with half a million of people around still living in ecologically changed conditions as a result of the bombing. The NATO did not reach any aim, if their aim was really to make a damage to the army. They only made a life long trauma for millions of people who live there and more millions of their friends and families who live abroad.

Being conscious of my inability to change anything there I tried with all rest of my energy to create my own life on the best possible way. Rachael visited me in August 1999 and we went together to France to look at the fascinating Total Sun Eclipse and I felt less alone so far from my country. From September 1999 I was able to start to learn the Flemish language (Dutch) and to integrate better in the new country. The "down on earth" mentality of Flemish people, mostly farmers during history, was something completely new for me and not easy at all. My free life full of enthusiastic fights for change had changed into a classical marriage life. People around were friendly but oriented to their own life and their own personal problems and joys. Discussions about something "paranormal" or "from the border of the science" were only present on some organized lectures, mostly in the association "The Round Table" organized by my husband. Beautiful concerts, extremely tasty food, magnificent architecture of Ghent, the city where we still live, and constant exchange of love with my husband were definitely pleasant to me.

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7. The baby is born

There was one positive side in such earthy way of living. In this surrounding, feeling emotional stable, we attracted a new soul to come to us, to help him to realize himself as a person. In November 2000 our son Boris was born. Holding the baby in my hands, some deep feeling of injustice started to occupy me. I was so happy and fulfilled as a mother but... My other baby, the book which nearly was born and in which I invested a lot of love and energy, stayed as a file in my computer which was not opened for a long time. In March 2001. My dear friend Rachael, who was always so supportive and who believed in my work, left us forever, adding more sorrow in my heart, but also reminding me even without being physically with me, that I did not finish my work. When Boris became a little bit less dependent on me and I had more time I contacted Melanie and Penguin Books asking if I could have additional time to publish the book. I received one more year to finish my work.

Rachael and Melanie meet: a note from Melanie.

In February 2000, I was sitting in a café in West Hampstead, feeling very miserable, as my lovely office had been robbed. I knew I needed to move on, and quickly, as the office manager was implicated, and was behaving in a weird and threatening way. I was afraid, confused and upset, and had walked to the café for solace. Rachael walked in. I had not seen her for a few years, although I had known her as a colleague in the astrological community in England. She walked up to my table, and said "Oh it's you! I was told by Guidance that there was someone I needed to speak to in a café down this road. I'd been into all the others, and didn't see anyone, but here you are." Rachael was always a deeply intuitive woman, and this was a wonderfully literal example. At that time she had been already struggling with cancer, trying to heal the tumours that had developed. In the course of the conversation, Rachael mentioned her work in Serbia, and it was then I learned of her connection with Dragana. I was very excited, as I had lost contact with Dragana, and neither had Penguin heard from her. I often thought about her, and worried and prayed and hoped that she was all right. I learned that Dragana was alive, well and living in Belgium with her new husband. I asked Rachael to make sure that Dragana had my Email if she wanted to make contact. So Rachael and I sat a long time drinking coffee and listening to each other's stories of recent difficulties. We left laughing and happy, marvelling at the universe with its elegant play of synchronicity. This was to be the last time I saw her. Then the following year, I was thrilled to hear from Dragana, requesting an extension of the translation deadline. I immediately rang Penguin and after hearing some of Dragana's story they were very willing to give more time.

The hard work began. Reading all texts one more time, translating the last 30 pages. My husband made all the horoscopes for the book from his astrological program and prepared the texts for publishing. I chose one of his artistic photos for the cover. Very pleased I went to Serbia to publish it but... I forgot that earthy projects cannot be so easy realized in Serbia. "According to the rules, you have to find a lector to read all the texts, then a corrector to check all the changes. The cover must be done by a professional agency. The printing cannot be done in the format you have, but all the preparation for printing must be done by the printing company itself. The Ministry of education has to give a permission for publishing and to judge if the book is useful for the readers, so you have to have a review written by a professional person..." - my head was full with unexpected requirements. Of course, all this additional work cost a lot of money... When I finally had the completely finished book in the computer, I did not have enough money to print it and I nearly started to cry. My mother loosened her secret purse-string and gave me all money she had which was just as much as I needed. Finally, in May 2003, 6 years after my first contract with Penguin was signed, the book came to the readers.

Now it is possible to find this book on 3 continents: Europe, America, even Australia. My greatest pleasure is to know that people from Bosnia, Croatia, Slovenia, Serbia and Montenegro have the opportunity to buy this book and that many books are already there, by the readers. During all these years the situation in ex-YU changed and many other foreign books were also translated and published there.

"People from Slovenia know you via this book. This is so wonderful that you did such a useful work and gave this book to us." wrote Sergeja Traven from Bled, Slovenia, with a honest respect and enthusiasm.
"Congratulation for finishing this hard work and thank you for the book!" - Matjaz Regovec, director of the Astrological Institute from the same country encouraged me.
"I am here to help you in the distribution, if I can." - said always friendly Karin Baloh from Rijeka, Croatia. Aleksandar Imsiragic from Belgrade offered his help, too.
"I feel honoured to be a reader of this book, which came into my life as the final part of the puzzle. At the end of the reading of the book I was able to understand and logically explain many difficult patterns and situations in my life." - excitedly wrote Smilya Koldzin - Jovic from Melbourne, Australia.

At the end of my story, I would like to repeat a part of the introduction to the Serbian translation written by Melanie:

"... we do not need to project our own pain on to the collective, which in turn leaves us stronger and freer to participate in collective change in whatever way we feel called and to be there for those who suffer the wounds of history..."

This is exactly what happened to me during the translation and publishing of her book.

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