Someone once said that the passing of my dog, Pennylane, would bring extraordinary gifts. The catch is that I would not know what they were until it happened. Doglama is the story of the spiritual connection between humans and our companion animals, and the opportunity for personal transformation that can come only in the fire of our darkest hour. Using ritual and ancient prayers and protocols, like the Tibetan Book of the Dead, we find ways to support our own death process as we let go of the beings closest to us. Ultimately, bearing witness to their passing reminds us that no one is spared from death. Even this will happen to me. The gift in the passing becomes the ability to live this one beautiful life.
About the Film
And, I'm going to do all of that in less than 25 minutes. I plan to make a short documentary film. First, as you will see below, I have a deadline; and second, it's a much easier vehicle for viral distribution than a feature length documentary film. I will use some original footage of Pennylane (despite the fact that she found it uninteresting to sit still for photos or video unless food was involved). I will interview Dr. Gurney, Pennylane's vet, who frequently reminded me, "She is your teacher," as well as others who can give words to the personal and spiritual aspects that I expressed above. The challenge will be to keep it tight and refrain from the temptation to segue into other areas, as death, companion animals, and transformation are huge topics. Using the backdrop of my personal exprience and this one (awesome) dog, I will be able to keep it focused. In addition, I spent years watching documentary films and a few years producing them. It will give me great pleasure to create a piece, along side Ben Phelan of Luminous Media, who will do the shooting and editing, that is worthy of my relationship with Pennylane and the gifts she has given me. This film is the next step in our journey.
Distribution Plans - The Urgency of Doing it NOW!
We are making this film right away to submit it to the Telluride Mountain Film Festival (www.MountainFilm.org) for possible screening over Memorial Day weekend in Telluride, Colorado, 2013. The submission deadline is February 15, 2013. Your donation will be available to me immediately, so I do not have to wait until we reach our goal before beginning.
I have been going to Mountain Film for the past 5 years. The first time I went, I met Captain Paul Watson of Sea Shepherd and Charlie Russell, who raised orphaned brown bear cubs in Kamchatka, Russia. Their courage, dedication, and big love moved me and reignited my passion for animals. Since then, Mountain Film has become an annual spiritual Mecca where I connect with like-minded people, reconnect with my deeper self, and get inspired to bring my love into the world through action. Mountain Film weekend has been so profound and inspirational that I want to submit this film there first. If we get accepted, then one of the perks outlined below will be to come to a Doglama party in Telluride that weekend. If we do not get accepted to Mountain Film, we will pick another film festival or occasion to do the same. No matter what, this film is a celebration, and, as a funder, you will be invited to celebrate with us.
I also plan to release this film digitally over the Internet so that others may enjoy it free of charge. My hope is that people will watch it and pass it on to those who have lost or are in the process of losing a companion animal. In emptiness, everything is possible.
Many of you have already supported me in so many ways during her life, her passing, and my grieving. You know who you are, and you know we are bonded together. This film is the next step of the journey. Thank you, in advance, for supporting this project. It means so much to me.