Many Paths and One Truth
Vivian Quattlebaum's studio is nestled discreetly across the way from Sunrise CafÈ at Palmetto Bay Marina on Hilton Head Island. The envelope-sized space has a buzz of crackling energy, but with the hard edges worn like stones that tumbled down a mountain stream. In the background, gentle New Age music spreads through the air bathing her newly crafted jewelry in melodic contentment. Vivian, a petite, soft-spoken woman, is a gold and silversmith, and her one-of-a-kind jewelry is made with precious gems mined around the world. She even embellishes fossils found on our own beaches with gems as unique settings. She has just returned from Arizona, where she attended the annual Tucson Gem and Mineral Show, the largest in the United States, where thousands of dealers and buyers congregate from around the world. "It was a showcase of the best-of-the-best," Vivian comments. She has been a jewelry maker for 27 years and her craftsmanship is exquisite. She has just completed a pair of Peruvian opal earrings that are a soothing, beautiful, unencumbered pale blue.
Not only does Vivian create fine jewelry, she also practices and teaches Reiki, a Japanese technique for stress reduction, a relaxation that also promotes healing. "Everything in the world is energy. It has a frequency, a vibration. When people are sick they have lower frequencies. Reiki increases the frequencies which increases health," Vivian explains. She has practiced Reiki for twelve years and became a Grand Master a year ago. Reiki works in harmony with other healing modalities and helps improve results. "It is becoming more common in hospitals and along side other mainstream medical practices because they're finding it helps people heal quicker," added Vivian. It works on three levels: physical, emotional/mental, and spiritual. It unblocks pathways so energy can flow. She works with many cancer patients and has attuned close to 1,000 people over the last ten years to perform Reiki on themselves daily.
Vivian is both a spiritual and religious person. Due to her curiosities and desire to become more enlightened, she has followed many different paths. "I followed the Shamanic path and the Hindu and Buddhist paths and I came to one realization: They all are seeking the same thing-inner peace, wisdom, the love of and for everyone, and forgiveness. The different paths are just in different languages," she elucidated, adding, "There are many paths and one truth."
Her passion also runs deep for animals and she is a birds-of-prey rescuer. Fire fighters and security officers from the area plantations call her for help. Vivian dons herself with her shoulder-high gloves and scoops up the hurt animals and takes them to the rehabilitation center in Charleston. She has rescued many wild birds, including ospreys and hawks. She is a lover of all animals, and they too respond well to Reiki. "Horses are especially responsive."
Vivian has been blessed with a lifelong dialogue with a creative life. She is particularly thankful for what she calls the learned behaviors she has focused on, such as jewelry making. She began as a watercolorist, but realizing she may starve as a painter, she went to barber school and has been cutting and styling hair for 39 years, a creative art in itself. Vivian's studio includes her hair salon, Scissor Wizard.
A multi-faceted woman of many talents, Vivian has made a life-long quest of learning, teaching, and remaining open to any and all possibilities. Her many paths have led her to the one truth, that love, kindness, and openness lead to a happy, productive, and fulfilling life.
In the Lowcountry: A native South Carolinian from Columbia, she moved to Hilton Head 34 years ago. She visited with a friend and never left.
Family: Her son Todd and grandson Dakota Cage, age 11, live in Columbia, SC
Hidden talents: Plays the Native American flute and the Australian Didgeridoo
Favorite place to be: "My soul soars on the coast or in the mountains."
Most profound book: Autobiography of a Yogi opened her mind and her art. "You owe it to yourself to read this book."
Future plans: "One day at a time, honey. I don't waste any time in the past, and I'm grateful for exactly what is today because it is a gift." Sage advice.