Posted in Authentic Freedom, Authentic Freedom Academy

Mission Possible!

Our Mission:

Authentic Freedom Academy is a center for experiential education, supporting the transformation of human consciousness through the integration of Western psychology and Western Spirituality, equipping students to be agents of positive, non-violent change in the world.

We accomplish this mission through:

  • writing and publishing
  • one-on-one mentoring
  • local and online courses
  • on-going service to the community


Outer change begins with inner change.

Inner change begins with self-knowledge.

Self- Knowledge leads to self-actualization.

Self-actualized individuals, are inherently non-violent, cooperative and collaborative, and are naturally motivated to use their unique gifts in service to the betterment of the world.


Authentic Freedom™ is a trademarked protocol developed by Lauri Ann Lumby, OM, MATS, founder and director of Authentic Freedom Academy. Authentic Freedom™ integrates specific tools and practices of Western Psychology with those of Western Spirituality, resulting in a powerful process through which participants are supported in becoming self-actualized and are then empowered to share their unique giftedness in service to the betterment of the world.


Specific Tools used in Authentic Freedom™:

  • Western, Eastern and Indigenous Mindfulness, Contemplation and Journey practices
  • The Spiritual Exercises and Rules of Discernment of St. Ignatius
  • Creativity Practices
  • The Myers-Briggs Personality Profile
  • The Enneagram Temperament Tool
  • The Spiritual/Personal Gifts Inventory
  • The Authentic Freedom™ protocol



From Western Psychology, Authentic Freedom™ draws from:

  • Carl Jung’s creative imagination, archetype and shadow work
  • Abraham Maslow’s hierarchy of needs and theories of self-actualization
  • The humanistic theories and creativity practices of Carl and Natalie Rogers
  • The stages of spiritual development of James Fowler and John Westerhoff
  • Bill Plotkin’s development of the human Soul

From Western Spirituality, Authentic Freedom™ has its roots in the original teachings of Jesus* which were then formalized into the meditation, contemplation and service practices of Western Monasticism, specifically those favored in Benedictine, Franciscan, and Ignatian spirituality.

*The original teachings of Jesus are those rooted in the universal (and non-religious) call of love:

  • love of God (the God of your own understanding)
  • love of Self
  • love of Neighbor – recognizing that all of humanity is our neighbor

and then:

  • lived out through acts of compassion
  • working for justice


What Authentic Freedom is not:

  • Authentic Freedom is not counseling.  Whereas counseling focuses on treating “disease” and supporting behavior modification and recovery, the focus in Authentic Freedom is self-awareness and deep, enduring transformation. Authentic Freedom may include the healing of old wounds and unresolved trauma, but it is accomplished through supporting deep, inner change.  In Authentic Freedom, anxiety, depression and panic attacks are not pathologized but are acknowledged as symptoms of the Soul longing for its fulfillment, symptoms that subside on their own the closer we get to the purpose of our Soul.
  • Authentic Freedom is not life-coaching.  While encouragement and support are a big part of Authentic Freedom, the emphasis is on personal responsibility, accountability and empowerment.  The goal of Authentic Freedom is that one day you will no longer need our services because you will have all the tools you need to fly on your own.

NOTE:  If you are under the care of a licensed therapist or life coach, you will find that Authentic Freedom complements this work by providing you with additional tools in support of your overall goals of self-care.


lauriprofilecolorwebshot2013Contact Lauri Lumby today to find out how Authentic Freedom might be for you. or (920) 230-1313.

Posted in church, Jesus, Mary Magdalene, Raised Catholic, Returning book

Returning: A Fire in my Belly

Today’s review of my upcoming book Returning – a woman’s midlife journey to herself, comes to us through writer, artist and editor extraordinaire, Nina Catanese.  ( (see Nina’s fun bio below!)  Nina and I met through our mutual love of Anne Rice and passion for all things gothic.  I have found in Nina a sister in spirit, not only in writing, art, music and literature, but also in the shared tension that arises between our love of the Catholic faith in which we were raised and frustrations over the shenanigans of the Institution.  Thank you Nina for sharing your own inner fire through this review and in all the work that you do!

Nina Catanese
Nina Catanese

Lauri Lumby has a fire in her belly. You can call it the fire that ignites the Wild Woman Within. You can call it the fire that forges creativity. You can see it as the flame that burned above the heads of the Evangelists, spurring them on, inspired, to share their message of hope and love. You can see it as the fire of Creation Herself.

Lauri has identified this fire and she stokes it, invokes it, and is galvanized by its power. And like Prometheus, she has taken this fire and is – thank God – sharing it with all of us. She lays bare its power in our lives – the recklessness, the passion, the creation and destruction as it holds us all in its grasp.

Lauri has tapped into her primordial Self that lives within that fire in her belly and calls upon her aspects to come forth and speak. In her poetry all the Archetypes she holds within are exorcized. She introduces us to hers in a very intimate and fearless way, inviting us to look upon our own – Mother, Child, Destroyer, Creator, Teacher, Rock Star, Lover, Sister, Healer, Spiritual Guide, Sophia the Wise, Brigid of Kildara, Kuan Yin, Magdalene – they are all there, with strong voices raised in song.

Lauri’s voice resounds in me because it speaks to the hunger I feel, having been born and raised Catholic, only to watch my faith and devotion in an irreverent and irrelevant Church wither on the vine of lies and suppression. Lauri gives voice to the frustration I feel with the Church while singing tenderly the praises of Jesus and Saint Francis and the other pure, ignited souls, and I feel like a little lost lamb having found my flock within the folds of each poem. Her words comfort me, give me hope, validate my feelings, and strengthen my resolve that the fire that lives in me is pure and is given to me by The Source. Her words invite me to sing along, to reach within to find my own Authentic Self. I have found a spiritual home, a kindred Spirit, someone who embraces the good and, with mighty scorn, denounces the wrong that has been exacted upon women throughout history. Lauri is, like John the Baptist, The Voice who cries in the wilderness. Lauri is the voice of the wilderness itself, echoing what many religiously disenfranchised women today feel.

I rejoice in her celebration of Women and of Spirit, I revel in her candor, and embrace her strength and weaknesses which she lays bare for all to see, grappling with Fear, Forgiveness, Beauty, Abundance, Receiving, Giving, to name but a few, which is what Self is all about.

Nina’s Bio…in her own words!  🙂  

I am a Carl Jung and Caroline Myss enthusiast who regularly toys with the idea of one day becoming a therapist. It is very rewarding to help people realize their strengths as well as the areas that need strengthening or forgiveness, as it helps them find their Spirit, their Spark. My literary editing profession calls for that skill – guiding people through their story to the places of strength, come to terms with or strengthen their weak parts, and locate that Spark that enables them to become better writers. I enjoy what I do, which is write, ghost write, and edit books for my editing business, Launch Pad Media. I am a published editor, having been in the business for over fourteen years. Joy is revealed to me in the flower and vegetable garden, in cooking, singing, drawing, reading, taking walks, celebrating time with loved ones, and discovering the Spirit in all of life. This year’s goals are: make meditation a discipline and get my beloved bicycle a tune-up and hit the trails and roads once more. Namaste!