Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Drafting Peace

I was looking at some old photos from the 1960s today on a website, and that prompted some thoughts on what happened then.

For example, there were some huge peace demonstrations to end the war in Vietnam back then and I participated in many of them myself. Why? Simple. Back then we had the draft, whioh meant that every male over the age of 18 was required to register and having done so, you could be ordered to report for duty in the army and sent to Vietnam. Guys I knew were dying in Vietnam as soon as the summer we graduated from high school. And for what?

The simple fact of the draft gave both young men and their parents cause to be concerned, and brought many to the demonstrations.

Many people, when considering the question of whether they would be willing to die for Vietnam, decided that they would not. Eventually, popular opinion caused our politicians to end the war.

Which brings us to the present day. There were no massive demonstrations when either of the Bushes were launching wars in Iraq. Why not? Because there is no draft, so all young men are not in danger of being shipped to Iraq to face possible sudden death or permanent injury. If there was still a draft there would have been large protests.

Support is stronger for the war in Afghanistan because the terrorists who were responsible for 9/11 had training camps in that country, and there is a lot of agreement that retaliating against them is the correct thing to do.

When we don't have a vested interest in an action or series of events, we are less concerned about how it turns out. If we don't personally have to go and fight in a war, then how it goes is somebody else's problem.

At the root of that activism and idealism in the 60s was a very personal interest in making the world a better place. We cannot control what everyone else in the world does, but we can control what we do. I still look forward to a time when we are not involved in any war with anyone.

Here is a related thought. If we consider terrorists to be enemy combatants then we are elevating a handful of deranged suicidal people to the level of worthy adversary.

If we were to treat them instead as criminals to be tracked down, the violence would be smaller and more contained. If coordinated police and military forces tracked down mad bombers, saboteurs, kidnappers and murderers and treated them as such, they would have a much harder time portraying themselves as heroes.

Another current example is the horrendous spate of killings by the drug cartels in Mexico who are fighting for the rights to be our illegal drug suppliers. So now there is talk about lending military aid to the Mexican government to try and end this carnage. However, legalizing drugs would end the carnage more quickly and efficiently than a fleet of helicopters and battalions of soldiers.

Apprehending criminals rather than declaring wars could be a better way to do what needs to be done. So we can act in our own self defense and work toward peace at the same time. We can do it.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Flash Cards for Adults

When you are trying to visualize your future, your goals, your dreams, tarot cards can be useful props to help you remember and see where you want to go.

With so many fabulous designs to choose from these days, you can find cards with contemporary imagery just as easily as cards with medieval or renaissance imagery, whether you prefer oracle decks or regular tarot. Just to clarify, a standard tarot deck has 78 cards, 22 major arcana (major life lessons, and 56 minor arcana (scenes from everyday life), which are divided into 4 suits, with numbers from 1-10 and court cards (kings, queens, etc). Oracle cards are any kind of deck that can be used for similar purposes but may not have suits, numbers, court cards, major and minor arcana and they may be comprised of 36, 40, 52 or some other number of cards. Whatever your choice, they can all be used the same way.

What is important to do is be able to picture yourself being successful in your desire, or your quest, whatever that is. So by selecting a card that has a message that fits with your purpose, (usually cards have an image and a keyword), you have a handy visual aid to reinforce your positive thinking and strengthen your resolve with a handy reminder that you can prop up on your desk, or by your bed or in the kitchen or wherever you think it would be most effective. When we were in grammar school, we had flash cards to help us remember things. So these cards could be flash cards for adults.

If there is not just one card that would present exactly the right message for you, combine a few to create a combined sequence like a phrase or message.

There are lots of uses for tarot cards besides fortune telling. Here is another.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Imagine Your Future

Taking advantage of this natural cycle of expansion, it is important to be able to imagine our own future.

If we are having difficulty doing that, an adjustment in our plans, or a change of direction may be indicated.

Yes, of course, there may be developments down the road that we are not aware of at this time, but we still can imagine what we would like our life to be like and how things would work.

Our imagination lays out the path that our conscious actions can follow. If we cannot envision ourselves becoming more successful in our chosen field of endeavor, then it may be time to choose a different field.

If we can see ourselves moving toward success, but not seeing how it will be done, then try imagining it from different perspectives and see which way allows a clearer vision of our path.

Our imagination is the blueprint for what we want to build. If we cannot form a picture of it in our mind, how can we possibly go about building it?

When our ancient ancestors painted those pictures of the hunt on the walls of their caves, they were picturing themselves having a successful hunt before going on the hunt. They communicated their desires to spirit and then acted as if their spirits and their bodies were on the same path to a successful hunt.

Way back then, they saw the importance of positive thinking and imagination foreshadowing successful accomplishments. We continue in the same vein as our ancestors. Let us do our hunting magic tonight. What is it you want? What will you do to get it?

Sunday, March 28, 2010

The Second Full Moon for Expansion

This is the last full moon of winter, which certainly fits the weather we are having in Colorado, although in some parts of the country, like the Southeast, gardeners would have their seeds in the ground by now. Spring Equinox and the moon nearest it would be the time to have done your playing in the dirt and getting this year's garden started.

Folk names for this moon include Chaste Moon, which refers to the purity of the new garden at the beginning, its new start, and it can also refer to the power of a simple design. Worm Moon due to the warming of the earth, which brings the worms back up closer to the surface, which brings back the robins. Another is the Sap Moon, a time for tapping maple trees.

All suggest the richness we harvest from the earth, the gifts of nature which are abundant and well appreciated. When we work with her, much is available to us.

Even if you are not a gardener or a farmer, what seeds do you want to plant and nurture into growth in your life? Perhaps the seeds you are planting are to sprout a new career, a new job, a new relationship, a new activity or hobby that you have decided to spend time developing.

View this moon as symbolizing your opportunity to expand your life in one or more of these ways. Let us focus on what kinds of ways we can grow this year.

Spend a little time with the moon energy this evening. Reflect on the beauty of the night sky and how she inspires us. Moon energy is soft, lending itself to the nurturing aspect of our selves. When we harmonize our energies with the cycles of nature, we can become more effective. Ask any successful gardener how well gardening according to moon cycles works.

Gaze at the moon and notice how she fills our view and lights our world when she is full. As you bathe in this light, picture your own expansion and rising to your full glory in the enterprise of your choosing. Doesn't it make the hairs stand on the back of your neck and your eyes shine a little brighter?

Dig in and do the work during the time the moon slides into her waning cycle and then goes dark again and by the time she is full and radiant again, notice the advances you have made on your goals. Be encouraged by this cycle of life to take action, and expect the best results.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Time to Breathe

One thing that I have found that works is to allow time for each thing we want to do. There have been many days when I have gotten up on the weekend and I do not have to go to work, but my list of things to do has grown so that I find myself rushing about, allowing myself a very tight window for one appointment or errand, and then if that takes a little longer, I must rush to get to the next appointment or the next store before it closes or whatever. Scheduling myself this tightly takes some of the pleasure out of each thing I need to do, since I am always needing to check the time. And then, at the end of the day, it does not always feel like the day off was all that enjoyable.

So now what I do differently is to schedule fewer appointments with more space between them, and if there is not enough time, then I let some things go for another day, and enjoy each one more.

So many times during our normal workday we have to rush from appointment to appointment from task to task.

Relax and enjoy your days. Leave a little breathing room so that you can enjoy the pleasure of doing each thing, savoring the experience. That way you don't have to drive faster to get where you are going, you don't have to feel like you threw yourself off schedule because you were enjoying looking around the bookstore or the produce section of the grocery store, or just kicking back with a beverage in your easy chair. Set things up so that if one appointment runs a little long it does not make you late for the next one.

We have to give ourselves a little time to rest so that we can return to our important work with renewed vigor.

When you give yourself time to breathe, everything that comes after that feels even better.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Quiet Knowing

It is in quiet moments that I am able to imagine the world as it was and may be.

Quiet times are gateways to knowing. When we are out of the traffic and busyness of business, when we are simply enjoying the small pleasures, these are the moments of insight and appreciation.

In quiet moments, we can simply look at pictures of art and enjoy it. In quiet moments we can appreciate the simple beauty of a cup of tea and a good book. The quiet moments seem to allow more flashes of inspiration, when we suddenly get the feeling that what we are doing was something that our ancestors were doing, whether it is using the leaves of a plant for healing or imagining ourselves as the successful hunters, or even in discovering a lost object, as successful treasure hunters.

Relaxing opens the way to envision, to sample, to savor, to hear music both in music and the sounds of life around us. Quiet moments let us seek order in chaos, beauty in fragility and even the sweetness of knowing that there is much we do not know.

It is in quiet moments that I am able to imagine the world as it was and may be.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

A Sweet Mystery

Here is an interesting thing to ponder. I have type 2 diabetes and it is controlled by a combination of diet, exercise and medications. I measure my blood sugars every day with a little blood sugar meter, the kind where you get a drop of blood from your fingertip.

Over the years I have observed how eating certain foods affects blood sugar. Those results are predictable, in the way that foods with lots of sugars in them make the numbers go up, but meats and vegetables let the numbers go to a lower level.

Exercise as simple as walking for an hour can make the blood sugar numbers go down by as much as 10 points. Any exercise will help regulate blood sugar and burn off calories.

To keep blood sugars stable, they recommend eating something every 4-5 hours.

So here is a mystery. I have noticed when I am busy doing a lot of readings, I have had stretches where I have not eaten for as much as 10-12 hours, and yet felt none of the symptoms of low blood sugar. No deliberate attempt to skip meals or anything, simply being busy and not having time to stop and eat, or maybe I should say I am happy to be busy and do not want to stop the flow for a meal break.

Of course I eat something at the end of the day. Next day blood sugar levels are normal. I have had this happen on more than one occasion, and it always surprises me, because, of course, I do not realize it until it is over.

Don't know if anyone else has had similar experiences or any insights to offer.

Friday, March 19, 2010

New Best Friends

There is no such thing as a beginner's deck. Sometimes people ask what is the best to begin with, but the best advice is to simply pick a deck whose artwork you really like. If the art speaks to you, you will be able to work with it.

Meanings and interpretations will come to you as you gaze at the cards and let your mind wander over all of the possible meanings a picture can hold. you will notice that a card can mean one thing all by itself, but then in various combinations with other cards, it can take on other meanings.

As you work with your spirit guides and let the feelings flow, other meanings will come to you which may seem at first to be totally unrelated to the pictures. We have to learn to trust our instincts and intuitions. Pay attention to your first impressions.

When teaching a person about working with cards, it often happens that when I have them draw a card and then ask them what it means, they tell that they need to look it up in the book first. I advise to set the book aside. Work with the cards first and read the book later. The cards will work with you and you may or may not agree with what is in the book.

This is the way I began. My fist deck did not come with a book, so I had to get familiar with them and learn to work with them without any instructions. Today, a great many decks come packaged with a book. Some books are wonderful and some don't offer a lot.

If you just focus on the central image contained on each card, you will be on the right track. Some designers include other symbol sets on cards, such as runes, letters of the Hebrew alphabet, I Ching hexagrams, alchemical symbols, astrological signs, playing card equivalents, and other things.

In my experience, these other symbols can in some cases deepen your experience of the cards, but they are extra, and not essential. A card set relies on the pictures, and the central image will always tell you something.

So if you are just beginning to work with cards, do not be intimidated. Just enjoy and appreciate the imagery and let every picture tell a story. In the constant shuffling, different combinations of pictures will tell different stories. Don't be too hard on yourself and think you need to understand every little detail.

If you see me at the fair, I will have a number of decks with me that I can read for you with, and if you wish to purchase a deck for yourself to use, I have some excellent deals. I love tarot and will be happy to introduce you to a fabulous array of decks that can become your own metaphysical tool box and tutor. Some of us even feel like our decks are our friends.

Think of working with a deck as making a new best friend and avail yourself of the wisdom, insight and beauty that each has to offer. Amazing how something that fits easily in a pocket or purse can yield such giant results, and grow with you over the years. A combination art gallery and book of wisdom that just gets better with age, revealing layer upon layer of beauty, truth, wisdom and advice, and your deck is always ready for you.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Living Tarot

Here is an exercise that you can use when you are drawing one card at a time to use as a self teaching technique. As you draw a card, ask yourself, how would you feel if this were you in the picture? How would things look from your vantage point? Do you hear anything? Do you smell anything? What happens in the scene following this one?

If you could talk to the character in this picture, what would you say? What would they say? What kind of tone do they use to address you? Are they stern? Humorous? Loving? Duplicitous? Are they shy? Arrogant? Insightful? Encouraging?

If these were people in your life, who would they be? Do certain characters remain constant in who they represent, or do they change according to the day, or the question?

What changes when you draw more than one card?

How do the stories read, when you place three or more together? Are there infinite varieties of stories? Or do the recurring characters seem to act the same and speak the same every time you see them?

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Irish Legends

Since today is a day when many thoughts turn to Ireland, here are a few interesting stories to consider. I personally will skip the green beer in favor of one of those wonderful microbrewed ales or a shot of Irish whiskey.

Ireland is considered to have been settled by successive waves of invasions of different people. Some say that the druids were more than simply the priests of the ancient pagan religion, but rather remnants of an earlier race of people who lived there before the Celts arrived.

Among the earlier races of people, there were some who were literally smaller, like the Picts of Scotland. one legend has it that the succeeding waves of invaders drove them underground, hence the beginning of the tales of the little people.

Often, we picture the progression of evolution of mankind to be orderly and linear, with people in each generation getting bigger and smarter than their ancestors. however, it is possible that different races co-existed for a time, such as the Cro-Magnon and the Neanderthals. Perhaps giants and little people were populations who intermingled and interacted. Today, we still have midgets, and there are also people who are over seven feet tall, although the vast majorityof us fall in between there.

Millennia ago, the tribe known as the Tuatha de Danaan, the children of the goddess Danu, were told that their future homeland was to be a beautiful isle top the west on the great ocean. These people named a might river that ran through their homeland after Danu, the river Danube, in what is now Germany. The isle to the west was Ireland. The final battle to determine rulership of Ireland was between the Tuatha and the Milesians, Celts who lived in what is now Spain.

One of the leaders of the Milesians was Amergin, said to have been the first poet of Ireland, and the beginning of the great legacy of Irish poets and storytellers. His poem, The Song of Amergin, was said to have broken the magical spell cast by the Tuatha and led to their successful landing and invasion of Ireland.

Amergin, Bard of the Milesians, lays claim to the Land of Ireland

I am a stag: of seven tines,
I am a flood: across a plain,
I am a wind: on a deep lake,
I am a tear: the Sun lets fall,
I am a hawk: above the cliff,
I am a thorn: beneath the nail,
I am a wonder: among flowers,
I am a wizard: who but I
Sets the cool head aflame with smoke?

I am a spear: that roars for blood,
I am a salmon: in a pool,
I am a lure: from paradise,
I am a hill: where poets walk,
I am a boar: ruthless and red,
I am a breaker: threatening doom,
I am a tide: that drags to death,
I am an infant: who but I
Peeps from the unhewn dolmen, arch?

I am the womb: of every holt,
I am the blaze: on every hill,
I am the queen: of every hive,
I am the shield: for every head,
I am the tomb: of every hope.

Song of Amergin translated by Robert Graves, from The White Goddess

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Laughing at Life

It is hard to overemphasize the value of laughter as a great stress relief strategy. It is hard to overemphasize the value of shared laughter as a bond between people. I use it at every opportunity.

One of the other benefits of laughter is that it has also been proven to increase our body's own healing abilities. Don't you just love those metaphysical effects? We engage in a kind of thinking that lifts our spirits and it also helps us heal.

Sometimes it is hard to be more absurd than real life. I heard one person say recently that he didn't need to go see Alice in Wonderland because he is on the other side of the looking glass already. He said that he can take a trip to Wonderland by pouring himself a cup of tea and watching the news.

The ironies of some news stories just beg to be parodied. On one day, you have someone proposing to pass new laws to regulate yoga teachers, and the next someone opposes regulations for payday loan companies. Last year political drag queens included a Libertarian running as a Republican and a Republican running as a Libertarian, while Sarah Palin kind of reminded me of a cross between Peter Sellers in Being There and a character from a Monty Python movie.

Various characters surface in the news who prompt new versions of blonde jokes and who hasn't seen or heard a Tiger Woods joke by now?

When we are feeling stressed, there is nothing that can break the tension better than a good comedy or stand up routine.

Stand up comedians are today's court jesters. The best have a knack for picking up on cultural trends and current events and evoking laughter through the recognition of the contradictions and absurdities posing as reality.

The number of new comedians seems to have increased during in recent years, perhaps because the news has become so absurd.

Laughter can make us feel better while we get on with what we have to do next and can prompt us to look at new solutions. We need to laugh so that we don't take ourselves so seriously. Often, truth is revealed in silliness. And it feels so good. Don't you feel lighter after a good laugh? Laughter is like love. Everybody appreciates it.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Artistic Challenges

People who love tarot and have a number of decks frequently use more than one, although most people have a favorite that gets used a lot. Some people have a few different decks and use them regularly. I know one person who draws cards from an angel deck and a tarot deck as part of her daily exercise. I keep one in my desk, one on my table, one in the car and use whatever I feel drawn to use from time to time.

There are people who have only one deck, use it for years and become so intimately familiar with it that they know all the nuances of those cards. And some never thought of using another deck until one day they discovered another that really appealed to them, and then they switched over to using that one mainly.

There are times when changing decks can really shift the energy of readings. A new burst of energy arrives with the images created by the artist, especially if the artist has made conceptual changes. Many decks are very similar in design, with the basic images and ideas staying the same, simply expressed with a nuance of style.

Some decks however, radically depart from traditional designs, and in so doing, stimulate fresh ideas in the users. Startling new images inspire fresh bursts of inspiration and insight. A new take on an image that we have seen many times can suddenly illuminate that familiar concept from a whole new angle.

In a radically different design, the mind may be suddenly taken in unexpected directions, and new channels of intuitive ability opened wide.

A person who is a gifted reader is not limited or bound by simply what is on the cards. They use the cards as a gateway to open to spirit and the messages that connection brings through. That is precisely why sometimes the reading can be driven by what is on the cards and sometimes what comes through may or may not be represented in those pictures.

So the adventure I have planned for this weekend is to display a number of decks on the table and let the people who want readings with me choose the deck that strikes their fancy for their reading. At the same time, I will be challenged to be in an even greater state of heightened awareness, presented surprises that come with the variety of art that will surface, and the intuitive doors they open.

It will be a novel experience, a distinctly different offering for most people. I am looking forward to sharing the joy of discovery with everyone.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Expressions of Karma

Karma is one of those concepts that people often picture as a balancing that is done from lifetime to lifetime, but sometimes there is a balancing that needs to be done within a single lifetime.

Just as our body will sometimes present us with a healing crisis so that we will have to take a day or two off and rest, it is the enforced rest that gives us time to think, and humbles us with the knowledge there are times when simply resting will heal us, rather than medicines.

Necessary rest and balancing can be presented to us in other ways as well. For example when we lose a job and are forced to do something else. A friend told me that she got her own business into high gear after her corporate job was sent to India.

Within our lifetimes we may also see a pattern in how things go up and down for us. Perhaps we realize that the place we have been in the business world has not really been right for us. Perhaps in one phase of our career we supervised people and managed facilities, and then in a later phase discovered great happiness in doing some small simple job with no management responsibilities. If our grander vision was driven simply by ego, it could be quite satisfying to find something to do that give satisfaction in the doing of the task itself.

Relationships, work, leisure time activities, avocations. Karma finds expression in all of them. When we embrace all of our experiences with gratitude, insights open to us, and opportunities.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

A Meditation on Money

Today I am working on my taxes. Like everyone else who makes at least part of their income as a self employed person, gathering all the receipts together so that you can calculate your income versus expenses is one of those tasks that demands a number of hours of time and attention and it can be frustrating if you have not kept your records and receipts where you can find them.

There are moments of enlightenment in this preparation. For example, identifying which expenses were a waste of money, and which brought a good return, thus pointing the way to be more efficient and more profitable next year.

Some people express a lot of anger over paying taxes, but I do not. Here are a few my insights on the subject.

Ask someone who used to have a good paying job and then lost it because their company moved that job to India or China, and I'll bet they would much rather have a decent paying job and pay taxes on that income rather than be on unemployment or working at some much lower paying job now.

If you think about it, every job that is off shored means one less income tax that a person will be able to pay, which, of course, reduces government income. On the whole, it also reduces the quality of life as people fall from an income bracket which would enable them to buy houses, cars, and make other major purchases. Another reason to be concerned about this corporate behavior.

Most people who start their own business have a dip in income before it rises again, unless they have someone who has given them money to use, or they have a spectacularly successful new beginning right off the bat.

There is concern about money wasted in pork barrel spending or earmarks. We probably never had a government budget that did not have any pork in it. Representatives will probably always be looking to get some of that for their home district, in the same way that lobbyists are always making donations to campaign funds in order to get laws passed that they want. Can we stop these practices? Unlikely.

One of the things that makes our country a good place to live and expresses our sense of decency toward other people is the use of our tax dollars to help those who are worse off get some help when they need it. Thus far, I have gone through my whole life without ever collecting one unemployment check or one set of food stamps. I am glad of that. I have seen or heard comments that some people would like to simply do away with Social Security and Medicare as a way of lowering their taxes. I do not agree. I have paid into Social Security since I was 14 when I got my first regular part time job and my Social Security card, and I certainly will be drawing out a monthly check when I get to be the right age for it. And if and when I am eligible for Medicare, I will use that too.

Here is a mystery of money to ponder. In all this discussion of reforming the health care system, some people raise the concern that if we covered everybody, where would the money come from? Did you hear this question before invading Iraq? Or Vietnam? Or wherever? When we have wars, where does that money come from? Or for that matter, questions of why we should get into a war. I would far prefer that my tax dollars help people get health care coverage than finance a war.

All in all, I regard paying taxes as just part of what it takes to live in this country. As I prepare my taxes, I keep an eye out for what I can learn from the process, and even though some money paid in may be wasted, I am sure that some of it is going for good purposes. I agree that our representatives do an imperfect job of managing our money.

As I look at my own expenditures, I never have a perfect year either. How would I define perfect? A year in which all of my expenses were wise and yielded great returns. No, every year I have spent some money wisely and some money foolishly and every year, I have made money on some investments and lost money on others.

This exercise is part of our learning process. Think of it as a meditation on money. And yes, I always have a professional help me prepare the forms and submit them. It is well worth it.

There is something to learn from all of the things we do, even the things we do not like to do. It is all part of raising consciousness.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

The Future in the Future

Do you remember long ago when you wondered what the future would be like? And now you are here. That future you were looking at is now. Is it like that?

I remember when I was in grammar school and they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I had no idea, so I thought about things I had seen on TV and said "I want to be like that." But my life did not look like anything I saw on TV. So I found a better way of looking ahead.

Now it is now, and I am looking ahead, for the future in my future. I look at what I might like, and what my life has been like so far. But that does not necessarily tell.

I have to relax and let things flow, let the visions come. They will be more true that what I might force.

Fractals. What small part that we see will mirror the big picture? What little detail will give way to the vision of what will come? What little moment that we capture, what bit of energy that we pick up on will reveal itself to be the big picture of the way our life plays out?

Now that we are in a future that does not look like we planned, we turn to the vision seekers to paint us the picture of what the future will look like in the future. And if we are in the future that looked like what we saw back then, what new future are we looking for now?

These cards hold fractals, bits of images that open up into panoramic scenes of wildness, color and vivid cross sections of life that awes us even to consider it. Yet it is true. Our future becomes our present, and then another future becomes the future. Your interlude with the reader is always at the threshold, the fractal coming to life, the bringer of dreams that begin to respond to touch. Take a deep breath, look through the window of the cards on the table. Life starts to stir the future in the future, and each fractal becomes a vision of a whole scene.

our old future is now. Your new future is coming.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Powerful Placebos

Scientists have recently agreed that the placebo effect is real and powerful. For those of you who have not been waiting for scientific proof, another way to say this is that the mind is a powerful tool. Stimulation of the immune system and the release of hormones can be triggered by our thoughts and feelings.

Why else do you think that sometimes in double blind studies, people who got the placebo did just as well as those who got the "real" medicine?

I have always maintained that sometimes we do need drugs and surgery, but sometimes changing our mindset can heal a wound as well as solving a problem. Relief from pain, anxiety, depression and more can be stimulated by non-invasive techniques. Some of the simple things I have written about before, from music to art walks in nature to reiki to ritual can work wonders.

For many years, the placebo effect was referred to in a context that implied that it was all fake and that only a fool would be happy with a placebo. Interesting that the tables are turned now that scientists have researched and reached the conclusion that the placebo effect can be real.

I know that many people reading this are either healers of some sort or have called on healers for their services. The fact that people choose from this variety of alternative techniques without insurance reimbursement is testimony to their effectiveness.

Here's another point to consider. Sometimes being with a person who seems to really care how you are doing makes a difference. If you feel that the healer is genuine in their concern and their effort, you could start to feel better even before the treatment begins and when you continue with that person, your feelings continue to improve.

Another way of saying it? Love, in the humanitarian sense of compassion and kindness that comes through the healer, is itself part of the healing mechanism.

Example? If you have experienced reiki or another form of energy healing and had nothing more than a drink of water, you could come away feeling much better than you did before the session, yet when you analyze it, what was done? No medicine was ingested, not even a lotion rubbed on the body, nothing more than a simple laying on of hands while the energy flows, and yet, you feel better.

It is my experience that all of this type of healing, when a person is really engaged in the process, is heart energy that is moving and doing the healing work. Heart. This might perfectly fit the definition of placebo.

When a person is going through a significant life change, especially a really trying time, a ritual can also serve as a placebo. The mere fact that you and a facilitator take time out from your daily routine in order to focus on the negative energy and shift it, can lift your spirits and help you creatively embrace and transform the changes in your life. Another placebo to the rescue!

The other joy and beauty that provide a practical aspect: placebos are usually very affordable healing sessions. Whatever it takes to feel better is very much within your reach.