Sunday, December 19, 2010

Can Psychic Work Affect Your Health?

Whenever I sit down for a reading, my mind and body have to go through a type of “ritual” before information finds its way into my being. For a 1-on-1, usually a few hours before the scheduled meeting, my skin begins to lightly tingle, and the focus of my mind gently shifts. It’s typically at these moments when I am granted a glimpse as to who is going to come through, such as a deceased sibling, parent, or former lover. Not wishing to get into the specifics of the reading (and normally because I’m busy doing other things at the time), I will try to ignore the energy and wait for the actual moment of the sitting. However, once this subtle vibration hits, things happen.

You know that feeling that someone is watching you? All eyes are staring at you, and suddenly you’re on high alert? Yeah, that’s what it feels like. This sensation usually doesn’t happen with groups, but for individuals, just about every time. Sight becomes a little clearer, as well as hearing and feeling things internally, too. For group sittings, usually within 45 minutes of starting, my body will tire, as if it needs a nap. I’m not sure why this doesn’t happen for 1-on-1’s, but for groups the body gets very relaxed and then all it takes is grabbing the hand of the first questioner and all the senses come to full alert.

Now, for groups, the other ritual that has to be done is a thorough washing of the hands. Since most of the connections done in the group settings are by holding the hand of questioner, I need to make sure there isn’t any kind of residual energy or energy blockages existent in my hands and arms, as this is being used as the initial “portal of entry.” A good 60-second to 2 minute hot water hand-wash clears that. I also do this during the intermission breaks, as by then I will have grasped anywhere from 8 to 12 different hands, and received equally as many different types of energy through that portal. Water, being a conductive element, is awesome in taking the energy and flowing it out of the hands and down the drain, clearing the entry-way and providing revitalization to the tissues and nerve-fibers being affected by incoming energy. These days, I prefer to let go of the hand as soon as I feel a certain threshold amount of energy received, and then conduct the reading by standing a few feet back, as I typically would during a 1-on-1. (I don’t ask to grasp the hand of the sitter in 1-on-1’s; I just sit back and let the energy come to me).

During the process of giving a reading, the functions of the body are clearly affected. If I have been suffering from a cold and battling congestion, stuffy nose, etc., during the course of the sitting, all of the symptoms disappear. Headache? Gone. Yesterday, my head was throbbing from a wisdom tooth. I took a pain pill about an hour ahead of what was going to be a two-hour sitting. When my clients arrived, my face was still aching. However, due to past experiences, I knew there would be no pain once things got going. True to form, within five minutes, it was as if there had never been a tooth-ache whatsoever.

Now, some would say this is an excellent way of staying healthy! Feel a little sick, go conduct a reading!

Actually, this may not necessarily be the case. Yes, psychic energy might be aligning certain frequencies in the body and forcing toxins out prior to giving a sitting, but this may not be advantageous for the body over the long haul.

We are all vibrating energy beings, and when we come into contact with psychic forces – in particular other people (whether dead or alive) – we expose our auras and energies to their frequencies. This exposure is unusual in terms of our typical sense of communication and integration of energy information. Our normal route of communication is through verbal speech, mental symbolism from the talking, and then integration based on our personal psychologies. The amount of psychic or spiritual energy transmitted between a typical conversation is negligible. However, psychics and mediums have to open themselves up – their bodies, their auras, the psychological structures of their minds – to much more. The energy has to (in a sense) invade the space in order to excite the psychic’s perceptive mechanisms and transmit the message. The entry into the auric field, body, and mind definitely can have its consequences. Here, you will typically come across the notion of “putting a bubble around yourself” or “see yourself in white light.” Though these protective techniques might help, let’s face it – the energy still has to mingle with the psychic on some level, and this will have consequences.

People always ask me after groups or long 1-on-1 sessions how exhausted I must be. It is true, especially after groups, that my mind becomes a mush; I can’t concentrate or think with clarity – so here is an example of effect on my brain and probable psychological mechanisms. And within an hour my body will become heavy and in need of deep sleep. (And certainly, before doing anything the next day, a good long hot shower upon rising to hopefully clear away any residual energy).

What does all this mean?

It means that doing psychic work can expose you to certain health risks. Though on the surface it appears the effects are positive and/or negligible, over the long-term this may not necessarily be so. The continued assault of psychic energy could actually wear the body down quicker. In other words, your body may actually age at a more rapid rate, as the constant fluctuation of energies expands and contracts you like a rubber band, which guarantees a higher potential for lowering life expectancy. Think of Indiana Jones, when he said “It’s not the years, honey, it’s the mileage.”

I am also reminded of Jane Roberts, who is known for channeling Seth. She died at age 55, with some debilitating physical health conditions. Some could argue that her health was the result of several multi-pronged personal belief systems and other natural conditions, and not a result of channeling. But one must not dismiss the possibility of the psychic energy that took over her body several times a week as possibly contributing to her demise. Are we seeing this in other channelers, such as Ramtha, or other mediums?

Health can be a tricky thing. We would hope that dealing with what we perceive as “spiritual energy” would be more of a help than a hindrance in regards to the effects upon the body. However we must remain mindful. Though we perceive the energy as “spiritual” and thus give it a connotation that is positive, we really don’t know if it’s “spiritual” at all. It is, as far as I’m concerned, just energy. And this energy does impact cells and tissues. If psychic communication is ever accepted by mainstream science, this we must look in this direction of how it affects health.

We must weigh the pros and cons of what we do. If psychic energy does wear the body down quicker over time, then we must consider why we should interact with it in the first place? For me, it is to try and answer some of the deeper questions about life, humanity, the nature of the cosmos, and share it with whoever is willing to listen. It is my personal hope that when my time on this earth is over, I have contributed to the best of my ability an opportunity to change earth for the better, leaving it in a more positive state than what it was when I was birthed into it. (Boy, do I still have a long way to go. Better get to work!)

Remain vigilant. If you’re pursuing developing psychic abilities, define why you are doing it. Make sure it is worth not just your time, effort, and reputation, but also your health. I think it’s wonderful that for a short hour or two, any kind of negative health condition I may be having completely disappears. But I have to wonder – do these hours also contribute to a shorter lifespan?

Could psychic communication, on some level, be akin to smoking a cigarette?

Admittedly, it’s a troubling thought. And we currently have ZERO research to answer that question. But when the tissues of your body are being “plugged into” a metaphorical wall outlet day after day, week after week, year after year, you must consider the long-term consequences.

Is it possible that it could extend your life, or have no adverse impact at all? Well, I do believe anything is possible. Leonora Piper did live to the ripe old age of 93, Geraldine Cummins, 76. Like I said, we don’t know.

But it always pays to be mindful. It’s a serious thing to open your body to so many different energies. Be aware of why you’re doing it, and ask yourself “Is it worth it?” For me, it is. For others, it might not. This kind of work requires a certain mindset, psychology, and self-esteem.

It’s not just your livelihood that could be affected, but the very health of your body, all the way down to the cellular level.

Until next time,

Sunday, December 12, 2010

The Life and Love of a Cat - A Tribute to Ms. Kitty (? - Dec. 7, 2010)

This was one of those weeks … A week you never look forward to: saying goodbye to one of your pets.

Ms. Kitty was a short-haired black cat (with a unique scar across her nose) that chanced upon me over 11 or 12 years ago. She was a cast-off, left behind at a boarding house by an owner who couldn’t take her when he left. Instead, she went from tenant to tenant on a daily basis, hoping for food and shelter, and in many cases was left abandoned and locked down in the basement. Nevertheless, she still loved people and wanted to be pet by everyone.

When I discovered she didn’t have a bonafide owner, I took her in. I will never forget the first time she came into the house. She plopped down in front of the couch and rolled joyously about on her back, grabbing the carpet with her paws and doing circles of bliss. She was definitely saying “Thank you for giving me a home! At last!”

At first she was an indoor/outdoor cat, and was always racing to meet me as I pulled into the driveway when I arrived home from work. She was an excellent companion, and in many ways understood me better than most people did. From her, I learned to distinguish when a cat smiled and when they felt scared. When I arrived at the vets to pick her up from her first checkup, the vet told me she must think very highly of me, as she behaved incredibly violent toward him and his staff J

There were times she gave me hope and a reason to keep going, as she walked the darkest paths of my life with me – a separation and divorce, isolation from the family, coming to terms with the realization that I wasn’t “normal” due to developing psychic abilities. When I felt other people couldn’t relate to me, or when I felt a total outcast amongst the rest of the world, she would look me in the eyes and tell me in her own way “I get you, and I love you.” I will never forget, during the height of my isolation living in a small apartment, I had fallen asleep on my futon – only to wake up and discovered she had climbed onto my chest and fallen asleep with me. That’s the kind of companion she was.

When Heidi and I got married, she carried that love over to her (though she hated her cat). In these last few years, before running downstairs for breakfast, she made a point of greeting Heidi – going out of her way to jaunt into the bedroom and meow as if to say “Good morning, mommy!” She would sometimes follow Heidi around more than me, looking for a nice snack or an occasional “pick me up and pet me.”

Over the last year or so, things started to change with my beloved feline. She lost practically all her weight and stopped using the litter box (something I could tell she wasn’t happy about. I could see some humiliation after catching her in the act). She became more brazen and bold at trying to get more food, as if she were starving 24/7. The vet told us her thyroid and everything was normal; she was just getting old. She started sleeping more and more, keeping to only one or two places in the house.

On Tuesday during morning meditation, I decided to ask my guides how Kitty was doing; I could see she was tired, and every day was more of a trial than it was a joy. Still, I was not prepared for what they told me: “Today is the day.” I didn’t want to believe them. I mean, sure, she had slowed down, but there wasn’t any other adverse medical conditions that she displayed. I figured she at least still had 3 or 4 more weeks left – maybe up through the new year, and that she would just fall asleep and not wake up when the time came. In their kindness, my guides said “If not today, then 3 or 4 days, maximum – but today is really it.”

When I let the cats out of their room (we keep them locked up overnight), I totally expected her to bounce out like she normally would – run to Heidi to greet her – then clamor downstairs for her morning meal. Upon seeing that, I could say to my guides “See, you’re wrong.”

That didn’t happen.

She didn’t come running out; she sauntered. She didn’t go into the bedroom to greet Heidi, rather she wandered to the stairs and slowly jogged down them, versus her usual dash. I also noticed her front paws looked like they might be swollen.

My heart sank.

At breakfast, she ate up, then made her way to the usual sleep spot and hunkered down. I told myself, she’ll be all right … Yep, that’s what I told myself, but not what I truly felt inside. Still, I went to work … battling in my consciousness what my guides had told me and what I wanted to believe. It was one of the hardest days at work in my life, having that cloud hang over me. I bawled in my car at lunch.

When I got home, she still greeted me at the door, like she always did. But instead of circling me to feed her, she went back to her sleep spot. When I laid down her food, she didn’t eat it all at once – and that certainly wasn’t normal. She came back for bits at a time, alternating between her sleep spot and the food bowl. And indeed, I could tell for certain now, her paws were swollen. I still argued, though, that today was not today … Maybe tomorrow, maybe the next day, but not today …

I spent every moment I could with her that evening. I scooped her up and we watched three-quarters of a movie together, like we always did (though we used to finish the film). At that three-quarters mark, she jumped off the couch – but refused to get back up. She tried to stand … wobbled … then laid back down. I took her to her sleep spot, where she laid her head on her paws and just stared off into oblivion, as if waiting for the inevitable. I knew my guides were right. She was dying.

Heidi rushed home from her engagement when I called her to tell her what was happening. When she arrived, Kitty acknowledged her by lifting her head ever so slightly and feigned a meow - yet it came out silent. She refused to stand; all she wanted was to lay there with her head down.

Now, one of our unspoken agreements from years ago was that when the time came, I wouldn’t let her suffer. I knew then, I needed to follow through. She didn’t protest when I placed her into the cat carrier. Nor did she scream in fear as we drove through the rain-soaked streets at 10:30 p.m., in sheer darkness, to the emergency vets office.

I got to hold her in my arms as the vet administered the solution, her little head gently in the palm of my hand. I knew if I was holding her, she would feel safe, and I believe she felt she was. Somewhere during the course of the injection, my senses registered an immense field of wondrous joy bursting open – as if she were suddenly screaming “I am free! I am free!” I looked up and saw in my mind’s eye, Ms. Kitty being picked up by a woman; it may have been one of my relatives or a guide, I wasn’t sure. But the intense feeling of freedom pervaded all my senses; that she was happy was evident -- though that sense of happiness still left me with my own sadness.

Around the same time as she passed away, Heidi’s mom – who had no idea what we were going through – dreamt about Kitty in her sleep. She saw her strutting with spunk, weight back on her bones, and filled with energy. She immediately woke up and wondered if something had happened. Indeed, something had.

That night, sleep was tough for me. Maybe three hours at most. However, twice during the deepest rest periods, I could swear I heard Kitty meow in the darkness. The next day, I came home early to catch up on some sleep. I passed out on the couch, then woke up to the unmistakable sound of her purring. In her own way, she was performing ghostly antics to tell me she had made the journey in good form and was quite happy.

Friday morning, I was finally ready to meditate again before starting the day. When I reached the meditation state, my pajama legs physically moved – Ms. Kitty had arrived and was rubbing against me, and it was a real movement of the cloth. In my mind, she then jumped onto my lap and curled up, as she used to do when it was just the two of us. She showed me she was frolicking through grassy fields on the Other Side, playing with mice and birds – all the things she missed since I decided to turn her into an indoor-only cat. She thanked me for taking her to the vet Tuesday night, and made me feel like it was the most loving thing I did for her; that I gave her back her youth. Inside my being, I also felt (and knew) it was right. I had no regrets about putting her to sleep. And, in fact, I’ve emotionally held up amazingly well through the whole ordeal. I figured I would be a blubbering mass for weeks over the loss of Ms. Kitty, but somehow, my internal barometer has made me feel like everything is right with the Universe – I fulfilled my role with her life as she had fulfilled hers with mine.

Yes, it still doesn’t look right not seeing her rush out of the cat room in the morning, or taking her up there at night, or not having her creating an obstacle course at our feet while we’re in the kitchen. Her absence is a void in our lives, no matter how many ghostly meows and purrs I may hear with my physical ears, or sensations of her presence and images she may send me through my senses as a medium. Even so, like I said, there’s a part of me that feels everything is exactly as it should be.

The real interesting thing is, that void of her absence was partially removed Saturday when I brought her ashes home from the vet (we asked for private cremation). It’s something we noticed with Heidi’s cat that passed away a few years back … Even though we know the body is a shell, their ashes still contain the feeling of their presence. I can only think it has to do with the notion of quantum entanglement. Their life force filled their bones and body for so many years … it does leave an impression after they die. Bringing her ashes back … made it feel like home, at least provisionally. I know that may sound a bit morbid, but it’s the truth.

Our two other cats, I think, are adjusting. No doubt, they have been wondering where she went.

One thing I know for sure – she’s not too far away. I do physically miss her around; we all do. But her presence is still here in many ways, and I know she’s happy and loves us.

No need to say goodbye, Ms. Kitty – how about, “I’ll see you around.”

Until next time,

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Does Being Psychic = Being Spiritual?

There’s an unspoken danger lurking in the metaphysical community … It is an assumption harbored by many seekers who procure the advice of the many practitioners within the psychic healing/communication and energy-working arts. That assumption: the psychic or healer has an advanced knowledge of spirituality.

The assumption springs from the ideas circulating around the nature of the work. Speaking as a medium, a client will oftentimes assume that if someone has the ability to communicate with deceased relatives, then that presents a picture of having a unique connection to spirits, hence the practitioner must have a more developed sense of spirituality. Additionally, if someone seeks the advice of other types of psychics, it is perceived that if such people can have “supernatural” access to information (past, present, and future) or able to “read the cards,” or can do things seemingly outside the bounds of normal western medicine, that this unique talent must mean the person is a spiritual savant.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Let me explain.

Psychic abilities – or the ability to perform any kind of a task – does not necessarily reveal the inner knowledge or disposition heralded by the practitioner in regards to spirituality or higher wisdom. To say that any psychic, medium, or energy worker is an evolved spiritual person would be the same as saying just because a young boy can shoot a basketball through a hoop makes him an all-time athlete on par with Michael Jordan. Quite frankly, it doesn’t.

The first hurdle in this quagmire is to define what being “spiritual” means. It could mean many things to many different people. Those clients who walk in off the street may feel that being spiritual is about having a deeper sense of the unity and oneness among all things; an understanding of forces somehow “outside” the normal scope of human perception and our relationship to them; unlimited compassion; charity; an unending supply of grace; and lack of prejudice. Yes, each of these (and potentially more) are great qualities, but is it safe to assume that everyone who is a practitioner in the metaphysical community has them or engages in them? Someone’s perception of spirituality may also be black and white: it isn’t about unity among God’s creations, but really the perception of separation between good and evil, and how things stack up and the battle that rages between them.

In either case, can we assume someone working within the metaphysical community is an ultra-spiritual being? Not at all.

There are those out there who choose to use their psychic gifts more for ego aggrandizement and self-serving needs than for truly helping others and behaving in a pre-defined “spiritual” manner. There are those practitioners who do believe that because they have a unique ability, it makes them somehow a “better” person than someone without the abilities. They wear their talent on their sleeves, consistently drawing attention to it like a spotlight to the lead actor on a stage. It’s more about them and not really about the client or helping others. As a friend of mine once said, when it comes to purchasing services in this field: “buyer beware.” It’s one thing to go to a psychic and try and hear from a deceased relative, or get another perspective on the past, present, and future … It’s another to assume the practitioner is going to have some higher knowledge or wisdom to impart that’s beyond your own life and understanding.

Instantaneous wisdom and advanced spiritual knowledge is not something that just “happens” or is granted just because someone has some psychic ability or is working to develop in that field. Since we do not know exactly how the psychic signal functions, we cannot say that the ability itself is anything spiritual, in the sense that we’re talking about here; it is more of a function and doesn’t necessarily come with a plaque that reads “guru.”

Plus – and here comes the real downer – there have been numerous cases of fraud and deception throughout history when it comes to practitioners. Whether it be by deliberate action or simply naivet√©, not everyone is legitimate. Some do take advantage of others; there are crooks and fiends in any type of business scenario, and the spiritual/psychic/energy healing business is no different. And when it comes to a field of endeavor where much of what is discussed has to be taken on faith because it can’t be physically proven (at least not initially, and even then the outcome may only be circumstantial and still not definitive), it makes it that much more difficult. Where do the bounds of reason and reality end and fantasy and outright falsehoods begin? It can be an extremely tough call.

There are human tendencies which do find their ways even into those fields where you would think such tendencies would be shunned: ego, ultra competitiveness … arrogance – those things you’d typically consider contradictory to spirituality. In the end, people are people, no matter what they’re doing, so we must be cautious. These things do exist in the metaphysical community – it’s one of the reasons I got out of doing psychic fairs many years ago.

In my opinion (take it or leave it), being spiritual is a choice, a way of being, and an attempt at understanding the relationships within all things in the universe and how it’s all connected. Again, that’s my definition … but guess what: the answers don’t just fall into place because I have some ability as a psychic.

We often talk about “walking the spiritual path.” Like any type of deliberate lifestyle, it requires discipline and a commitment to study, research, and – when it comes to spirituality – inspection of daily experiences in relation to a perception of the universe and creation; to become aware of how our lives unfold and are either supported by our hypothesis or how they aren’t, forever altering and becoming and learning more and more.

And it takes time.

To walk the spiritual path doesn’t simply mean the universe gives up all its secrets the moment you take your first step. To me, it’s constant work. Can we assume everyone in the metaphysical community is doing the work -- Steeped in the search for spiritual answers, or simply spouting what someone has told them or they’ve read about in a book? Is it work or regurgitation? And how do you know?

Experiences can definitely inform one about the nature of the universe … and, yes, psychic experiences can bring ideas and clues as to how things might be interrelated or what-not. But that doesn’t mean psychic equals spiritual (psychic = spiritual). Do all psychics pay attention to their experiences to glean what they can and learn more in regards to the nature of spirituality, or do their interests lie in showing off – getting from one client to the next, as if to say “look how cool I am! Am I not the greatest?” Is it possible that some walking the spiritual path may only be tiptoeing along, are shallow in their tread, and are not in the middle of the road but rather off to the side, looking to get more personal validation rather than learning and serving others? It’s a sobering thought.

Here’s an idea to help overcome this: No one needs to be psychic to be spiritual. A gardener, just by living and watching the seasons and their plantings could gain more knowledge and wisdom about the nature of life and spirituality than someone who talks to the dead. Someone who gives of themselves in love and compassion – who has no idea what the future might bring – may actually be living a more spiritual life (and thus have greater insights) than someone who can “read the cards.” Someone who watches what they eat and how they exercise may know more about bodily health and stress than someone who does energy work.

As the saying goes – “Never judge a book by its cover.” Though you may be entering a world where it appears everyone is walking a spiritual path and might have a deeper awareness of spirituality, the reality is – once you peel back the cover and start turning the pages, this may not actually be so.

The power and course and destiny of your life is always within you. In seeking advice from outside sources, don’t automatically believe, latch onto, or otherwise accept what you’re told without carefully weighing it within your life’s design, your mental framework, and your sense of being. And even if what we in the psychic/energy field tell you sounds good, cheery, gloomy, or even halfway intelligent, our perceptions are strictly our own and should never be used to supersede your own judgment. As you would be cautious letting your child stand at the bus stop with other strange kids (not really knowing what the strange kids are like), consider your mind, being, and spirituality in the same light when visiting anybody who presents themselves in such a glorious, amazing, and enlightened manner. Yes, they may be authentic … but then again, they may not.

As mentioned earlier, one slam-dunk at the basketball hoop doesn’t make you Michael Jordan. It takes years of study, practice, and commitment. Unfortunately, some are in it for the sake of appearances -- for personal validation to address their own issues with self esteem or other mania.

Remain true to you, for your life is your own, and you have to make the call. In the end, someone else’s advice is only an opinion to an alternative point of view or action. You are not required to believe it, accept, or act on it; it is only a possibility. In the end, your life is yours. It’s not about the psychic, the healer, or any of the others. They may provide clues, but they aren’t always the wise and powerful Oz. (Pay no attention to the guy behind the curtain).

Until next time,

Sunday, November 28, 2010

The Gift of the Senses

Over the course of the last week and a half, I have been doing more research into the history of mediums and mediumship, ranging from the late 1890’s to the 1930’s. I have discovered a few more well-regarded mediums that received their information through automatic writing, trance, and even the Ouija board. These mediums, such as Gladys Osborne Leonard, Rosalie Thompson, and Hester Travers Smith, were researched for several years by the methodical scrutiny of the Society for Psychical Research (as well as others) and gained many supporters for the authenticity of their craft – both from researchers and the lay person alike (naturally, they also had their detractors – you can’t please everybody).

Some of the information I came across – the kind I’m always on the look-out for – was how these mediums “received” their information, particularly those in the trance state and automatic writing. This modus operandi was explained, according to the records, by the spirits coming through the mediums, and occasionally by the mediums receiving an impression within their consciousness. Now, one would think that with automatic writing (and even the Ouija) the entity takes either partial or full control of the medium (or the object being used as the indicator) and dictates the contents of the material as if slipping into a glove and moving the fingers without effort. Alas, that isn’t the case. As has been previously discussed in other blogs, it’s all about “impressing the mechanism.”

From the Thanksgiving blog, you’ll recall how I mentioned our five senses are part of the process in understanding our sixth sense. Many of these mediums, whether in trance or through writing, reported their information as coming through the process of mental imagery, inner dialogue (hearing), scent, touch, or inner feeling. “She is showing me an ‘S’, and the name sounds like ‘Sarah’” that sort of thing. Or “I’m feeling a hoarseness in my throat, and it’s burning. She had bad tonsillitis” or “She feels very antagonistic – she hated the guy.” Even those entities that tried to take control of the medium, particularly through automatic writing, reported that in the process of molding their energy with the medium’s, thoughts became harder to focus on and memory itself was sometimes affected. Several reported that the easiest way to convey their message was to pull from the context of the medium’s own memories – a somewhat obscure sense of alignment with the spirit’s intended message being clothed within the makeup of the medium’s mind.

At any rate, the method of reception was an impact on the medium’s five senses. Imagine my surprise when, in meditation last Monday, the message I received was “Too many people see the body as a hindrance to receiving spiritual communication; when in fact, communication into your realm wouldn’t be possible without it.”

We have been conditioned for centuries to believe that our bodies were akin to a prison; dirty; soiled; and not worth much when it came to spiritual awareness. Yet, my communications in this meditation made it quite the opposite.

It makes sense. We are all spiritual beings living a physical existence. That which is physical does rise out of – is birthed from – the spiritual realm. We oftentimes blame our physical bodies and curse them as being barriers between the seen and unseen; however, it is the senses couched within our bodies that are the exact pieces of communication equipment we need in order to access and dialogue with these other “unseen” realms.

“You are not separated from that which you cannot see,” I was told. “That which is unseen can be made manifest through the communicative equipment within the body – the five senses.” Every reality, they explained, is accessible through the very material that is dominant in the system. Realities are not “closed loop” systems; they do overlap and can be accessed to varying degrees. In other words “there are no barriers, and the pathway to accessing them can be found within every system, somewhere in its makeup” as everything is somehow interconnected. This access from an outer reality, when it comes in contact with dense physical matter (or rather you come into contact with it), is going to affect that matter through the mechanisms inherent in the individual’s perceptive qualities – namely the senses (if one is paying close enough attention).

The only way we register what’s happening around us is through our senses. The only way we can have access to any kind of information is going to be through such senses – information is going to require an observation of some kind in order to obtain it. Even an instantaneous knowing is going to require a type of observation – how else would you know? If you instantly know the name Sarah, how did you come to that? Did you hear ‘Sarah’? See it spelled out in front of you? Feel it inside your tissues? In any case, one or more of the senses would have to have been impressed and engaged, and your conscious mind got the answer.

Typically, our point of observation in using our senses is an “out there” perception within the dominant framework of dense physical matter. However, that observation can be turned “inward” to also have the same five senses look a bit “beyond” the dense atomic tapestry into other realities. Of course, the question becomes: is it a valid perception, or just a figment of the imagination? How do you distinguish between the two? That takes practice, time, trial and error. In some cases, you may get nothing for validation, and will either be forced to take the information received at face value, or toss it aside for lack of confirmation.

Through the process and continued practice, you can learn when something from a different reality impacts your senses to a varying degree. As you have learned to be keenly aware of what a bass note sounds like from treble note in music, you can distinguish with some clarity the impact of psychic phenomena from the mundane world, and what the message is that’s being transmitted.

This doesn’t mean there won’t be cloudy days. As previously stated, the merging of energies between your senses and that of a discarnate individual is not always a clear-cut proposition, especially if your reality observation extends to those on the Other Side. Sometimes there is “static” that affects the channel, and there could be any number of reasons for this: lack of practice on the discarnate’s side with impressing the medium; emotional frequencies on both parties making it difficult to concentrate; energetic interruption from other surrounding energies (such as expectations, extreme skepticism, etc.)

Still, our bodies have been granted the radio and television gear needed to keep communication lines open to these other realms. Some schools of thought suggest the sixth sense is actually the first; that our five senses are outgrowths of the intuitive, and that even though we may go blind or deaf later in life, the faculty itself within the context of intuition and psychic functioning would remain active (and perhaps even enhanced).

With enough determination, practice, and humbleness, we can attenuate our current senses to perform these additional functions. It is only because we have become so enraptured and hypnotized by the dense physical realm before us that we have made our observations habitual in that direction. But they don’t have to be. For sure, we cannot and should not deny the reality we are in – we are here on purpose for a reason – but that doesn’t mean you can’t sometimes connect and “call home” or perceive “trans-dimensional.” As I said, like anything, it takes practice, and we are all connected anyway, both to “here” and “there.”

But your body and its physical senses are not here to block or impede you. Your body is to help you maneuver and observe the universe – that is its functionality. Our predominant universe is dense matter … But it’s only predominant and not all-inclusive. And neither are the uses of our senses in that direction. The universe encompasses many great and wonderful things, and by extension, so do you, and you have been given the equipment to maneuver and observe such vastness.

As always, you are a perfect being. You have perfect senses. You just haven’t perfected using them yet … Or maybe you have (and just don’t realize it).

Have a great week!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving - What Are You Thankful For?

Thanksgiving is this week, and so I thought “What a wonderful blog this could be!” I did some research into the history of Thanksgiving … Finding stories of the European settlers and how they shared good bounty with the Native Americans; honoring the wealth of the harvest and the work achieved throughout the course of the year. It made me consider my own “harvest” and what I’ve achieved in the past 12 months.

But … this blog isn’t about me tooting my own horn (at least not all the time), so I’m not going to do that. Instead, I would like to turn the mirror around so it forces you to see yourself; to honor all that is about you and the grandeur of your life in a manner of thanksgiving. Stay with me for this – it’s more than what you think.

Have you looked at your reflection in the mirror today? If you have, then you have the wonderful gift of sight. Be thankful for it, as it gives you the ability to see such wondrous colors and forms – brilliant gardens and night skies, shades of red, yellow, blue ... It is also the adjunct to another form of sight you have – the third eye. Would you be able to understand the images that flash through this sense had you been born blind? I don’t know … But I am thankful to have my sight, as it has led to many epiphanies regarding images I see from sources outside the mundane (Okay, yes, I’m tooting my own horn again). Think of times that you have received a visual message – a hello, a warning, whatever – through that image in the mind, then ask yourself would it had been so possible without having the experience of normal sight? What a gift.

You could do this for hearing, too. What a dull, lifeless planet this would be if I could not hear the roar of the ocean … or the music of chimes in the wind, or the voice of my sweetheart. How would your world be if sound had no meaning and silence was your song? Without voice, could you talk to yourself? What would you hear inside your ethereal ears? How could you think words if you had never heard them to begin with? (Which, in some cases, doesn’t seem like such a bad thing.) Yet, thankfully, because of hearing, you are able to capture that voice which calls to you – not from the cellphone glued to your hip – but from that special voice when it tells you of danger, or congratulates you on a job well done.

Yes, we could apply thankfulness to all our senses. They do, in a way, guide us into understanding our own intuitive abilities. The psychic senses cannot be fully understood without first knowing our original five. When we begin to heighten our awareness of the normal senses, we can then become attuned with what our supernormal senses are telling us; we can have a better grasp of what colors, forms, shapes, tastes, smells, and feelings are telling us as they emerge from the void into the knowingness of our psychic beings. To that, the body is a wonderful instrument and teacher, and for that, I choose to stuff it with lots of food later this week! But seriously, we all too often take our five senses for granted, without realizing the huge role they play in not just our ordinary lives, but also our extra-ordinary talents and gifts.

More so than that, when the combination of these senses can be tuned to the betterment of others, that is truly something to be thankful for. It’s one thing to have abilities and use them to your own advantage, it’s another to use them in an act of service. To serve – to give of yourself – is an honor, and it is with enormous thanks and gratitude to the one desiring your service that such love flows. That friends, relatives, and sometimes complete strangers call upon your character, knowledge, and skills, is a testimony to something special about you within. And instead of it being a stroke of the ego, it really is a cause to be humble, for we all are great, powerful, wonderful beings. When someone requests of your skills, talents, and character, it is as if the greatness of God – for the person is an aspect of such glory – has chosen not to go within themselves for a solution, but instead has trusted you and garnered faith in you to help supply their needs. That is truly an awesome gift. Think of this when co-workers have asked you throughout the year to help them on projects, to brainstorm, to lend a helping hand. Think of this when customers have chosen to do business with you. Think of this when your significant other plants a warm kiss on your lips. They have given you the gift of their trust and faith – something so incredibly awesome, it is humbling to the spirit.

Then there’s also thanks to those that have helped in your own growth. As you have helped others, so too, others have given of their time, energy, and wisdom, and you have benefited. Would you have risen to the next level without others’ support? Would you have gained new knowledge, skills, and talents throughout the year without the efforts of someone else to guide you or inspire you? Professional speakers, trainers, authors, store clerks, friends and family … The people who put together that audio CD you listen to in the car that helps you curb negativism and think more positively … The list could be endless. Again, when you look at so many contributors to your life, you cannot help but be humbled. The “I am” of you could be perceived as the summation of various parts of others’ gifts that you have accepted into your being. To them, the vast contributors of such wealth and wisdom, I will toast a big glass of wine this holiday!

There is so much to be thankful for. When you begin to shine the lights of acknowledgement onto all those things that make your existence possible – the wonders of your body, being, the amazing knowledge, talents, and giving nature of others into your life – it exposes a map where the roads all lead: love. No, this isn’t romantic love, or possessive love, but it is expressive and most definitely expansive. Call it the love of the universe, the love of God, whatever suits you, but the reality is the same – the ability to gather unto your spirit all the necessities of forming a life worth living. It is joyous. It is stupendous. It is – by the very definition of the word – miraculous.

All this giving and receiving that we do amongst ourselves, both on a personal level and a social societal level, is a gift for this planet. Or at least, it can be (When we’re choosing not to blow each other up or limit another’s life experiences). So this week, on Thanksgiving, please take a moment to reflect upon everything and everyone that has contributed to the vast amount of air within your expanding balloon of conscious existence in the universe. You are beautiful because of all those that have given unto you, and additionally because of all you have given unto others.

Thank you for sharing your beauty with me in reading this blog.

HAPPY THANKSGIVING!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Celebrating the Big 40

Wow, I reached my 40th birthday a few days ago (November 11) and my wife – gracious, wonderful, and adoring that she is – thought it would be a great idea to throw a party to mark the occasion. I never really had a birthday party growing up; my family’s birthdays were always with grandma and grandpa, mom and dad, brother and sister … I never really had a party with friends. I never complained about it growing up; it never was that big a deal to me – so long as I got cake and presents (every young kid’s dream).

When my wife and I sat down to come up with a guest list, we were both wondering if anybody would show up, for the simple fact that my social life is about as active as a garden slug’s; I don’t get out much and am really quite an introvert. I think we were both stunned and amazed at the turnout – the house was packed – and though a lot of the cards and gifts were done as purely humorous jokes (LOVE the Boo Box and Whoopie Cushion), that everyone spent so much of their time, energy, and money on the cards and gifts (no matter how silly they were) and then deliver it all and play in our crazy games and stay late into the evening was such an amazing blessing. For someone like me who doesn’t get out into the world all that often, I am truly humbled by everyone who held me in their thoughts and celebrated this day with me. And there were some who couldn’t make it, but they did send their congrats through email and phone, with some warm and heartfelt messages (more than just a simple Happy Birthday) that I am truly honored and blessed to have received … As morbid as this may sound, it actually gives me hope that someone might show up when it’s time for my funeral!

I guess you never really know just how much of an impact you make on other people’s lives. Whether it’s really big or really small, it doesn’t matter in terms of size, but what matters is that some kind of an impact has been made, and it is an honored one. That’s what happened to me at my 40th birthday party.

This notion of impact is much larger than that of my own birthday party, however, because it is two-fold. I believe the impacts you have made on other people are greater than perhaps you may realize. You are all valued in so many ways and are such a blessing in this world; not just for me, but for everybody and every day that you interact with people. That you came out to celebrate with me, I hope to reflect back to you the worth that you are in my life and to possibly consider just how magnificent you are to everyone you come in contact with.

In being an introvert and a self-proclaimed shut-in, it’s a wondrous “wow” moment to see all these people you honor, admire, look up to, and respect, suddenly turn out to celebrate your 40th birthday. On the inside, we are always second-guessing ourselves, almost waiting for someone to come and find something “wrong” about us that forces us to slink into a fetal position and say “You’re right, this is how bad I am.” Okay, that might be an extreme example or caricature, but at any rate, it’s still a wonderful moment to see, read, and realize just by having everyone show up and send such gracious comments that perhaps you do have things to contribute, an honored part to play, a sense of value and worth outside the walls you keep yourself confined in. In writing this, I know it makes me sound like I have zero self-esteem – that’s really not the case – but it does make one realize that you do go beyond your own little world, your own little walls, and affect others. Too often we are reminded of how we do that in a negative fashion; this weekend was a snapshot of how we do it in a positive light.

WOW. WHAT AN ABSOLUTE BLESSING. I hope you, dear reader, will take a moment and reflect upon yourself, and honor that spark within you that does go out into the world and bless others who you meet. And maybe, just maybe, grant yourself a special precious nanosecond to accept that, and understand that you are an amazing blessing, even when you may not realize it.

Another reason I wanted to celebrate my 40th birthday was to acknowledge something within my soul that I knew to be true – there have been other lifetimes where my spirit never reached a 40th birthday. Somewhere deep within me, I knew there to be many such incarnations. In celebrating this event, it was to honor those portions of my being that never made it this far, and to hopefully in some small way carry them with me as I go forward into the future. Whether or not my reincarnational selves are aware of this, I can only hope, but I know somewhere inside me (as I’m sure you do, too, within your own self) other lives my soul has lived never got to see this part of existence – 40 years old. And that is, truly, something to celebrate.

When I consider my last reincarnational self – a young man blown to pieces in the Pacific theater of WWII, who never made it to the age of 25 (and my terrible fears of booming fireworks every July 4th reminding me of the blast of the cannons that shattered that soul into death) – is it poignant that I have my birthday on November 11, veteran’s day? Hah! Just goes to show, you may be down, but never out! (And to think, it took me nearly 39 years to realize the significance of my birthday being on veteran’s day! I never really made the connection before.)

There was a lot to honor in this celebration … Other portions of the self, friends, family … At 40, I know I am moving ahead with something I lacked earlier in life (not creaking bones or aches and pains), but a greater awareness of magic, love, and the realization of just how blessed we all are to have each other on this journey, in this time, in this life, on this planet.

Now that’s a Happy Birthday.

Until next time.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

The Medium's Lingo

Sometimes I think people have this erroneous idea that when a medium is talking to a deceased person, they think the dead is right up next to the medium’s ear whispering information. “Tell him my name is Joe, and that I had a heart attack.” Indeed, I believe some people think this is the way it should be. Though in some instances, information can come through the auditory senses (clairaudience), more often than not, various other methods are used to “speak.”

During the heyday of spiritualism in the late 1800s and early 1900’s, the investigators of the Society for Psychical Research in England and its American counterpart ASPR worked with many talented mediums that left them astounded believers. Richard Hodgson, a staunch skeptic, came to the US to study an enigmatic Boston housewife, Leonora Piper, who had confounded one of ASPR’s founders. Hodgson’s sole intent was to find out how she was fooling everybody; he even went so far as to hire private investigators to shadow her around town to see how she was “stealing” information about potential sitters. He is quoted in an article from 1914 as saying “I had but one object, to discover fraud and trickery … of unmasking her.” Through years of blind experiments and tests of unimaginable conditions (such as being poked with needles during a trance, or having foul smells placed under her nose to trip her up), Mrs. Piper turned Hodgson into a believer, as well as the highly regarded and respected psychologist William James, who declared Piper his “white crow.”

When Hodgson collapsed on the hand-ball court and died of a massive heart attack, it took eight days to make his way for communication through Piper to a new SPR investigator: The former Hodgson took control of the medium’s body and started writing. It was very tough at first (initially breaking the lead of the pencil due to uncertainty and heightened emotions as he tried to scrawl his initials). But eventually – through perseverance and practice – he got the pencil flowing and proved his identity by offering information Piper had never known about him, but could be validated. He also revealed how difficult it was for spirits to get information across to those here on earth. He said he had to “impress the mechanism” in order to get information through, describing Piper’s body as a field of light that scattered things in a random fashion; it took concentration and effort. He said there were certain spirits that, with much practice, were able to impress the energy easier than others to get the information into conscious awareness. He alluded to the notion that those of us on earth really have no idea as to what the medium has to go through, and so he did his best to describe the process; it wasn’t perfect, it was prone to errors, mainly due to the fact that consciousness is so variable and can distort the incoming impressions. I find now difficulties such as a blind man would experience in trying to find his hat,' Hodgson told Professor William Newbold in a July 23, 1906 sitting. “And I am not wholly conscious of my own utterances because they come out automatically, impressed upon the machine (Piper’s body)…I impress my thoughts on the machine which registers them at random, and which are at times doubtless difficult to understand. I understand so much better the modus operandi than I did when I was in your world.

Indeed, F.W.H. Myers, who is credited with starting the cross correspondence phenomenon (see my earlier post “Telepathy, Super-psi, or Talking to the Dead”), wrote through a medium after his death how hard it was to send a transmission. “The nearest simile I can find to express the difficulties of sending a message – is that I appear to be standing behind a sheet of frosted glass which blurs sight and deadens sounds – dictating feebly to a reluctant and somewhat obtuse secretary.” In cases like this, the message seems so clear, but apparently, it can be a game of hit-and-miss. The cross correspondences spell this out through many examples, as similar messages were received through various mediums, with only slight alterations between imagery or words, which would be expected by such limitations as “frosted glass that blurs sight and deadens sounds.”

As we can see from these early pioneers, it’s not as simple as someone speaking into your ear. Mediumship is its own language that oftentimes has to be “built” individually per medium. According to these initial explorers and modern mediums of today, a spirit will oftentimes show the medium something relevant to the medium’s life as an analogy to the spirit’s own. For instance, the medium may see an image of his own grandmother, simply to reference that he has a sitter’s grandmother coming through. The medium may see a shot of fireworks going off connected to a calendar date, giving him the impression of a birthday or anniversary – and it’s the same image for different spirits. Same with bodily sensations – heat may mean illness, or heaviness or blackness suggesting “Things aren’t right.” In other words, each spirit has access to symbols, feelings, sounds, from a personal library attached to the medium. How this works, how a spirit accesses this and understands how to impress the medium’s consciousness with the symbols, I can’t begin to imagine.

But the overall process seems to be understood: Images, feelings, smells, sounds … These are all techniques employed by the discarnate in order to get through. And they come in quick snapshots – rarely is it like a piece of film being thread through a projector that lasts from the beginning of the reading to the end. Yes, sometimes I see moving pictures, but they do not tell the complete story; the complete story can only be discovered within the context of all the images, sounds, feelings, etc., being experienced. Some add onto the others, creating a larger picture and meaning, while some are at times disjointed and require deeper examination.

Communication, as we all know, is a two-way street and we can assist our friends in spirit in developing this dialogue.

How?

Since a good percentage of clairvoyant perception comes in symbolic images “plucked” from the medium’s life history, the medium can create new memories, thus new symbols, to give spirits a greater vocabulary to choose from. I tried this technique over a year ago, and it has worked surprisingly well. Since I believe everyone has this ability, this means you can do it, too.

How to do this, you ask? It’s actually quite simple, in principle (the work comes in practicing mediumship itself, overall). Choose a picture (say an image of ballet slippers) and write beneath the image what it means as a symbol (“Dancing or dance.”) And then, during the course of a reading, if a snapshot of those ballet slippers appears, when you place it within the context of other messages coming through, you can piece it all together into a message that might say “He says you love to dance.” All it takes is creating an image, defining its meaning, and then committing it memory (that may take awhile).

Will these images be used all the time, every time? No. For instance, I have a symbol for being a musician and liking music. I had a client whose mother was an avid musician, yet the symbol never came up during the reading, but it had come up in other readings before. That’s okay; with all the other information she gave, there was no question that she was communicating. Again, since we don’t know all the fine details of how this process works, we can’t say why some spirits use the symbols while others don’t – when it seems they could have. Similarly, we have millions of words to choose from (according to Webster) yet we don’t always choose the most appropriate and instead stick to what we can use “off the cuff.” Since the act of communicating through a medium has its limitations (time, energy, and process), it may very well be whatever a spirit thinks they can grab more easily and transmit through the energetic matrix, and thus certain possible cues are abandoned in favor of others perceived as “easier to transmit.”

It may not be an easy method, or it might require education, practice, and skill. As Hodgson stated through Piper, some spirits are very practiced at communicating while others aren’t.

The other ingredient to making this communication happen more “smoothly” is the relaxation process within the medium. Since it appears the spirits have to impress our energies, the less chaotic and frantic we are, the better this process is going to be. I notice when I let go of expectation, stress, or even mild concern during a sitting, I get information a lot quicker, with deeper nuances. This is partly the reason why so many professional mediums suggest meditation as a daily practice.

Early mediums used a form of trance state in order to get out of their own way. It was within this trance that their consciousness would be suitable energetically to have spirits come through – either in automatic writing or direct channel. The trance medium usually declares no recollection of the sitting, as if they had left the body.

In many cases, the early mediums employed what they considered a “control” spirit, like a spirit guide, who would deliver the message on behalf of the deceased. It was believed that the control spirit had more practice in impressing the medium’s consciousness, plus aid in keeping the body of the medium protected. Today’s mediums are considered mental mediums, where they are consciously aware of the Now moment and are still in complete control of their faculties. Some claim to use spirit guide controls as the messengers, while others don’t. I, myself, feel I am communicating directly with the individual and not through a control, based on several factors happening at the time of communication, such as location of where the information is coming from, feel of the individual’s personality, etc.

In either case, the method of communication seems to be similar, if not altogether identical. It’s not talking like you and me having a conversation, it’s more like watching, listening, and feeling … And when things impress upon the consciousness – that feeling of heat, weight, accompanied by a visual image and maybe a memory of a sound or a familiar fragrance or a word which is completely unique within the stream of your regular mental awareness – that’s when the messages begin.

Until next time,

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween: What About Evil Spirits?

Halloween has arrived and I thought it would be an excellent time to talk about something that I get asked about every so often: What about evil spirits?

Yes, indeed, there are those spirits or entities who would like to do some people harm. However, when it comes to the word “evil,” we must realize that such a term is relative to the observer. In many cases, there’s a fine line between evil and good. We all know the term “one person’s good is another person’s evil.”

“Well, when you have a ghost throwing things at you, hitting you upside the head, or trying to gain possession of your body, is that not an evil spirit – or worse yet – a demon?”

It is certainly frightening and harrowing to the person being harassed, and in line with traditional thinking and storytelling, we would want to label such an entity as “evil.” In fact, anyone (dead or alive) wishing to harm another could truly fall under such a designation. There are certainly bad people in every walk of life, so why shouldn’t there be bad spirits?

The trick lies in the label “evil” or “demon.” We have created an entire industry around such titles and descriptions (thank you, Hollywood), and it has really done a disservice to our wiser selves and how to handle such entities if they are encountered.

“Evil,” as alluded to earlier, is assigned based on the ego-value systems we have set up. In other words, if the person being harassed were a fine upstanding citizen, we would say the spirit was “evil.” However, if the victim were to have just committed adultery, theft, or something much worse, others might argue he was getting his just rewards at the whims of a righteous angel. In this case, we’re just talking semantics, but in the end, what about those entities that do seem to instill utter dread, fear, and seemingly attack the living? Do they not reveal the truth of evil in the universe?

No, they reveal the truth of what evil is only a messenger of: Ignorance.

Spirits or entities that engage in behaviors designed to be destructive, divisive, or otherwise steal another person’s power from him/her and are meant to invoke fear are displaying an effect labeled “evil,” however this effect clearly highlights the real problem with such forces – the entity’s ignorance of everything being connected and One Being. This is the Spirit’s ignorance, that It fails to recognize the interconnectedness of all things and would rather play upon the illusion of separation. The thrust of anger, hate, or whatever negative things the spirit is engaged in directly relates to how the entity thinks and feels about Itself in relation to the universe, and is thus acting out in these manners, in my opinion.

In metaphysical terms, things in the spiritual realm (to which we are an outgrowth of) are not seen in terms of good or evil, but rather knowledge or ignorance. If someone is knowledgeable, they are aware of the divinity and interconnectedness within all life; if someone is ignorant, they do not, and indeed their behaviors reflect such lack of wisdom. Evil spirits and demons are the embodiment of this ignorance.

The other end to this spectrum falls upon the person in the role of “victim.” Here’s where “evil spirits” make their play – if someone is in the right vibration to be effected by their deeds. If the victim, too, is ignorant of their own divinity and validity throughout the multidimensional universe and attributes themselves to being “separate from” or “cut off” from the “forces of good” and also believes themselves to have “lesser power” than forces unseen, and worse yet, believes somewhere within themselves that they simply “are prone to bad luck” … You can see how an ignorant spirit could play havoc with such a person harboring this kind of psychology.

It could also fall to ignorance woven within a bad belief system. For instance, if a person believes in a hierarchical system where humanity is at the bottom, and then angels and demons above (in terms of abilities, strengths, etc.), instead of realizing it’s all wrapped up and interconnected, again we have the perfect mix for an ignorant spirit to display his foolishness through wicked means.

I’m not saying wicked spirits don’t exist or that things they do can’t scare the holy bejeezus out of you. I’m just saying the nature of the behavior reflects the level of knowledge they have regarding the nature of Being in the universe. Such spirits delight in tormenting only those they know will respond in the manner they are seeking. That is, if they were to try and attack someone who IS knowledgeable about interconnectedness and the validity of their own individual self in the universe in combination with everything else – the “evil” spirit would lose, hands down.

Put simply, if someone is knowledgeable of their divinity, their immortality, their interconnectedness to all life, then they know at any given nanosecond they are At One With All Life Everywhere, are Eternal, and Can Never be Limited. This person, in essence, accepts the ignorant entity and its existence, and instead of reeling against it in defiance, actually calls it in to themselves to dissolve it within the vastness of the entire cosmos – of which the enlightened individual is part and parcel of, and a gateway to; there is no separation, no division.

Or, if the individual isn’t interested in “dissolving” but is still looking for a form of personal protection, can still “link up” to the vastness of the multidimensional universe (they already are anyway) and simply say to the evil spirit “There’s one of you, but now I’ve called my brothers and sisters – and look how HUGE we are. You wanna play?” I believe this is what’s happening in those instances where (if the situation is legitimate and not mental) an exorcist calls upon Christ to dispel an evil spirit. At that moment, the priest is connecting himself to that which he perceives as the greater spirit of the universe, and thus gains the interconnectedness and vastness of power great enough to frighten an ignorant entity away. There are tales going back thousands of years prior to the gospels where evil spirits were dispelled by calling upon the name of the chosen god, be it Ra, Zeus, Zarathustra, what-have-you. It isn’t that these gods or saviors are really dispelling the entities themselves, it’s what they represent within the minds of both the person making the call and the evil spirit doing the deeds. It becomes a drama of beliefs, energies, and vibrations.

Evil spirits and demons are strictly the ignorant aspects of unwise individuals who still have much to learn about his/her nature, divinity, and connection to all else in the universe. And as is the golden rule, in hurting others, you are only hurting yourself.

It will, indeed, take them a long time to grow – but they will, as all life moves through stages of evolution. The good thing about ignorance is that it can be completely wiped out through education; ignorance can (and will) eventually be transmuted into knowledge. Unfortunately, for some, they will still do heinous acts that reflect stupidity in the face of a much larger, grander, and connected cosmos, and their education may proceed at a slow crawl ...

… At least to those who live in a universe bound in Time, hierarchies, and believed-of separation.

Until next time …

P.S. In many poltergeist cases, researchers have discovered that the ghostly activity may actually not be the result of an angry spirit, but rather the undeveloped aspect of a living person’s psychokinetic abilities. Fascinating!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Dreams, Forgiveness, and the Power of Attachments

It’s been over a week-and-a-half since I followed through on inspiration, and it has been truly enlightening. An immense weight has been lifted from my shoulders and I am exploring new ideas in regards to how we enmesh ourselves into the identity of our personal experiences.

For my close friends, this has been a truly remarkable occurrence, in terms of my actions. Astonishingly, it took me over a year and a half to do it. Not so surprisingly, we all are engaged in it throughout many areas of our lives. What am I talking about? Holding onto attachments and allowing them to control us, define us, be us – in ways we may never have imagined.

My own personal attachment was to the angst, pain, suspicion, and just downright bigotry and distaste (I won’t say “hate,” because I don’t think I ever reached that pinnacle) towards one of my co-workers at my job. Let’s just say, over the course of these past few years (close to two years) we always dreaded coming to work – mainly because of the other person. I hated having to come in and “deal with her,” while likewise she hated to come in and “deal with him.” Our defense shields were always up; I was wondering when she would go on the next offensive, and I believe she always felt the same way. Oh, we could work together and be civil, but it was obvious we were just “tolerating” one another, and always had a general suspicion of what the other was doing. It has always been a thorn in my side. Why is it I could get along with everyone except her? We have all heard the saying “there’s one person who always throws off the balance of the group.” I wasn’t the only one who had misgivings about her either. But it was a huge struggle for me, especially since I believe everyone is a divine perfect being; yet I eternally battled trying to reconcile that fact with what I was dealing with in my egoic perceptions and emotion surrounding her.

At any rate, she was just coming back from a week-long vacation and I was beginning to feel stressed the night before her return. The week she was gone – I’ll be completely honest – was wonderful. No stress. I could relax and do my job in peace. So when that last day came to a close, my inside was tossing on the record of dread. And I was so tired of listening to it.

This sense of anguish must have triggered something deep inside me, for that night I went into a deep lucid dreaming state. In the final episode of the night’s drama, I met with my co-worker outside the office and did what I thought would have been impossible: I apologized and asked her forgiveness. In this dreamstate, I listed a whole range of reasons why I felt we were different and at odds with each other, and explained that none of that mattered; that we needed to heal the rift; that our differences simply weren’t worth the weight of anxiety, the dread, the negativity that we were assaulting our bodies with. In this dream, by performing this action, the angst and pain completely washed away and a whole new day dawned for the both of us. We could then talk, laugh together, and honor the uniqueness of our individuality as opposed to using it as a focus of dis-ease and distrust.

When I awoke, I knew I had to do this in real life. Yes, scientific experiments have shown that you can affect others just by the nature of your own consciousness, but I wasn’t willing to simply leave it at that. I needed her to know that she could take down her guard and feel safe, as I was willing to be vulnerable enough to take down mine. In other words, I was finally willing to let go of it all. It didn’t matter who was right and who was wrong; it was a matter of mental, emotional, and physical health for the both of us.

Two opportunities came up right away that morning, where we were left alone in the cubicle room. I took this to be a sign that, yes, it was right. Plus, I was aching to get it out. The dream was so inspiring, I couldn’t wait for the possibility of having the pain be gone and replaced with some sense of relief and – to my hope – joy.

11:50 am. I knew there would be a good amount of time; circumstances had poised us to be alone without much interruption for at least 15 to 20 minutes. So I called her over to my desk. I didn’t waste a single moment. I mirrored my memory of the dream as best I could, starting out with “I need to apologize and ask for your forgiveness.”

She was admittedly confused and asked “About what?” I responded, “For the rift that has come between us.” From there, I launched into everything that I said in the dream. I talked about how we were different personality types – she’s an extrovert, I’m an introvert – but in the end, it wasn’t worth the angst and pain we were carrying from month-to-month. Our work, let’s face it, doesn’t require the breadth of concentration or mental capacity of trying to land a man on the moon or save someone’s life, so what we were hanging onto just wasn’t worth it.

As an aside, she could have completely shot me down – called me every name in the book – and I was open to having that happen. Being willing to let go of all the angst meant that she might have needed to unload onto me everything the she had been feeling, and I was willing to allow that. Incidentally, it didn’t come to that.

And things haven’t been the same since. As it happened in the dream, the pain, angst, suspicion, was instantly transmuted into peace … and laughter. We talk everyday now; we honor the other’s differences, rather than downgrade them; we help each other in projects we do, versus letting the other go it alone. Before, she walked around with a dark cloud – one of the things I always complained about – now, her eyes are bright and there’s light behind her. And the interesting thing is, all it took was the act of forgiveness. She said at the end of that first day “It was such a relief to have that conversation.”

Yes, it certainly was.

I started to realize, once all that anxiety and pain had gone away just how much I had identified with it elsewhere in my life. It was a vibration, a feeling, a perception that not only dominated my working life, but also found its way in things I did outside of my job. I had become so used to feeling in my consciousness some form of the angst and pain that started with my co-worker, imagine my surprise when I noticed the transmutation exceeded beyond the workspace. I didn’t fret about projects at home; I felt like I could relax more with my time and myself. Somehow, in some way, holding onto that pain for so long allowed it to ooze into other portions of my being. What a wake-up call!

It made me wonder about all the other attachments we hold onto. We may think certain feelings and thoughts are confined only to certain places and things, but based on this experience, I would have to say “Not necessarily.” Those same feelings can also creep in to other areas of your life, and you may not be aware of it.

When my co-worker and I let go of all that had been staining us, light came in and blossomed into our beings. I felt lighter, freer, and an overall sense of greater happiness – not just at work, but in other areas. This also led to a major spiritual/psychic event that would take too long to speak about here.

Since that dream and that coming together, I have experienced the true power of forgiveness; how it can transmute energy, emotion, and consciousness. Indeed, it’s not just simply forgiving the other person, it’s also about forgiving yourself – to acknowledge what you’ve held onto, and instead of berating yourself for it, coming to the conclusion that it really doesn’t serve you, that it is not you, and simply letting it go. The excuses you may have had to hold onto such negativity were simply that – excuses – no matter how logical they might have seemed. In hindsight, it was a process – I had to go through stages – until finally saying “I’ve had enough. I am willing to do anything not to feel this anymore.” In that declaration, the only thing I hadn’t tried yet was (you guessed it) forgiveness.

It’s also made me keenly aware of how we identify the nature of our existence with the lenses that we choose to perceive reality through; that what we identify as our experience is often a choice; it is an attachment to a perception we have about ourselves or about the nature of a condition – an attachment that we can easily let go of, if we choose to take that out-of-our-comfort-zone leap of faith. In my own sense, I am beginning to realize that who I think I am may be completely invalid; that my thoughts regarding myself and my feelings are simply just attachments that my consciousness has grafted itself to. What were I to become or be like if I were not to identify with my chosen attachments? It’s an interesting thought. Something inside of me says “You’ll be free. You’re much larger and greater than your attachments.” I don’t know, but it sure is interesting. It’s a common universal phrase we hear in spiritual teachings. I think too often we identify ourselves with our attachments, instead realizing our attachments are just expressions of us that are things we have total control over in changing.

One thing I do know: if there’s something that doesn’t feel right, I can forgive myself for aligning with it and move on. And indeed, that is freedom. At that point, there is no attachment – there is no prison cell to confine yourself inside. It just requires the desire to leap beyond the pain, hold onto the inspiration, and have faith.

Until next time …

P.S. In this process, I also noticed how much of a creature of habit I am. It took two or three days to remind myself NOT to feel the angst and anxiety. Parts of me almost tried to forget my co-worker and I had actually had that conversation, as my body was so used to automatically going into that reactionary mode of feeling the pain. Indeed, there was a sense of awkwardness, as it wasn’t “normal” or customary not to feel such energy. My guides instructed me “don’t feel like you need to go out and replace her with something else, just to deal with the same stuff all over again. Keep the message of the lesson in your being.”