Saturday, December 19, 2015

Christmas, Yule, Solstice, Saturnalia and the Traditions of Light

Celebrations of the light at this time of year have been natural developments for humankind since ancient times. By the time of the Harvest Moon in September every year, the Fall Equinox begins the shift of the time into the longer nights, the colder weather and the transition into winter.

You can see how all this began. During the deepest, darkest, coldest time of year, the Sun pauses for a moment and then begins to shine more light on us in doses that seem imperceptible at first, then increase. It is for that reason that we express hope for the coming year by bringing evergreens into the home to affirm that even now, we know that the world will warm up and turn green again and that the bonds that connect us will help us survive and prosper.

Ancient Romans celebrated Saturnalia, a week long tradition of holiday parties from December 17-23, which encompassed the time of the Winter Solstice. People were celebrating their abundant harvests and successes and bringing light and joy into their homes and their towns and giving thanks to their god Saturn. There was much frivolity, drinking and sexual play, mischief, music, dance and feasting. Today, many of the old pagan customs have survived as folk lore.

Ancient Germanic people give us the word Yule, which was a 
12 day celebration held at this same period of time. It was from these people that we got the traditions of the wassail, yule log, bringing evergreens inside the house, wreaths, garlands and trees, as well as the roast boar, which is why some people prefer ham as a holiday meal. The toast Wassail! means "to your health" and was usually made with a hot cider, often spiked with alcohol, of course.

It was in the 4th century that the new religion of Christianity had tried unsuccessfully to get the people to give up their old pagan traditions, so they moved the feast of Christ's birth to the same date as these old pagan holidays. So they simply declared all celebrations at this time of year to be celebrations of Christ's birth. The church used the psychological ploy of "if you can't lick 'em, join 'em."

Metaphorically, it all fit together. Saturnalia, Solstice and Yule were all celebrating the return of the Sun, because technically, from that day forward, the amount of sunlight in a day begins to grow, although it is not really visible until February 1, Groundhog Day. For Christians, the holiday was about the return of the Son, referring to the son of God. 

The parallel traditions work well together, because from both perspectives we bring light into the darkest time of the year by bringing light and joy into our homes. We light candles and fireplaces, decorate with lots of electric lights, and we invite family and friends into our homes to bring the light of good spirits and warmth. In the better aspects of Christianity, the holiday is about sharing love and good will and lighting the way with positivity and a giving spirit. The addition of Christmas to the previous holidays continued the concept of the spreading of light.

The themes in all of these traditions were about lighting the way for others, giving and receiving, and great expressions of joy. 

The holidays in the quarter of the year that encompass Halloween/Day of the Dead, Thanksgiving, Christmas/Yule, and New Year's are the most emotionally charged holidays of our year. 

Everything from traditional family recipes for treats and special food and drinks, to gift giving to seasonal songs are a part of this combined heritage. 

Just as the predominance of Christmas overshadowing Yule, Saturnalia and Solstice while absorbing elements of them, during the last century or so, various commercial enterprises came to overshadow spiritual elements of sharing the light. In a way, it is easy to understand how our bubbling over with expressions of joy, love, friendship and generosity at this time of year gave birth to the slew of Christmas themed movies and popular music.

However, as we return to the core of the traditions, we share light with others, lighting the way with not only decorations, music and special treats but the humor, open heartedness and sense of connections, welcoming and helping each other.

As we revel in the celebrations of light at this time of year, it is an optimum time to reflect on what old habits, relationships, and difficulties we want to burn off in our fires, and what kinds of light, love and joy we want to continue to expand in our lives during the coming year. 

May you enjoy all of the ways we energize each other's lives in the spirit of this season, and may we continue this throughout the year.

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Lighting the Way

One of the beautiful aspects of this time of year are all the lights that decorate both public places and our residences. The lights work a sort of magic with us, inspiring us to simply enjoy moments of visual beauty and also trigger moments of reflection.
Reflection then lights our way forward, just as lanterns along a path do. Thoughts prompted by the winter evenings and lights find us making ourselves cozy at home in the evenings, and as we relax with a warm beverage, a fire or candles, we may suddenly find our minds recalling a person we have not seen in a long time, or things that we did long ago.

At these moments, remember what the best aspects of that person are (or were) and how that helped you on your path. When recalling something we have done that we are proud of, and things that brought us great joy, notice how our hearts fill with love and the warmth we feel is directly related to those memories.

Now as we contemplate what we are about now and what we are going to do and wanting more of in our life, keep that same warm feeling of joy, pride, satisfaction and peace permeating those thoughts about what we really want now. This is the fire in the belly that fuels our engine and propels us forward.

So in this way, the outer lights lead to our inner light and propels us forward. Bear in mind that when we light the way for ourselves, we also light the way for others. When they see us enthusiastic and enjoying life, they may get inspired to pursue their dreams too, in addition to picking up attitudes from us, like our habit of being grateful and happy every day.

The magnificent holidays that come at this time of year are invested with many fond memories and good thoughts and so we literally and figuratively bring light and joy into our lives during the deepest, darkest, coldest time of winter.

We bring the light inside to remind ourselves that this darkness is seasonal, and that as it passes, we shed burdens and redirect energy as we reconnect with people and create new events. As we dance, sing, tell stories and jokes and the atmosphere is filled with lightened spirits and humor, we light up wherever we are.

In our fires, we can burn off those things we are done with, whether they are things, attitudes, or ideas. And then we can light our way with fresh energy, warmth and light, letting go of what no longer serves us while welcoming in that which will expand our sphere of influence for the better.

There are not just little bits of light reflecting off decorations, windows, ice and snow but off of us as well. When we light up, we invite more people to share in our energy and we see more smiles all around us as we light the way for ourselves and others.

Monday, November 9, 2015

November, the Month of Gratitude

November to me is an entire month of celebrating gratitude, with the civic holiday of Thanksgiving as the crowning event in the month. This year I am also happy to see a growing list of companies that are closing for Thanksgiving so that their employees can also spend time with their family and friends, reversing the ugly trend of just turning this magnificent holiday into just another shopping day.

One of the best things any of us can do to improve our lives on a daily basis is to cultivate an attitude of gratitude. It helps me to maintain a pleasant atmosphere and improve the results I get in my business. How does that work?

Easy. When you smile and are easy to get along with, people like to talk to you, do business with you and be kind and happy in return. When we express gratitude to our spirit guides for all the help and good they have brought into our lives, they appreciate our expressions because that makes our interaction more of a dialogue rather than a one way communication from someone who only calls on us when they want something.

I am grateful for having a good landlord who keeps the building where I live in good working order.

I am grateful for an auto repair shop that keeps my car in good working order and is honest and efficient, so I am happy to recommend them to family and friends.

I am grateful for the helpful and knowledgeable people who work in the grocery stores where I shop because they help me find things and offer useful advice.

I am grateful that my chiropractor, massage therapist, doctor and dentist are all people who not only do their work wonderfully well but they also have good attitudes and I am happy to work with them.

I am grateful that I have family and friends who live nearby and I enjoy spending time with them, and help them when needed.

I am grateful to live in a city that does a fine job of providing service to us, including the rec centers and the library which I use daily.

I am grateful for all my clients who have provided me the opportunities to serve them, and in turn I am grateful that being able to do so helps me make a living by doing work that I love.

Notice how when we express gratitude that everyone seems more cooperative and pleasant.

Notice how when we express gratitude that more and more unexpected good things happen for us or to us.

Notice how when we express gratitude that even things that at first seemed difficult or troublesome can often produce something good before it is over.

Notice how expressing gratitude fills the air around us with vibrations that are loving, kind, cooperative, compassionate, happy and good natured and these vibrations draw more of the same back to us. Like attracts like. Law of attraction. Sympathetic vibrations.

So if there is one thing that I could share with each one of you that would help you create more positive and beneficial results in your life right now and every day from now on, this is it.

Express gratitude every day, and watch developments in your life blossom and thrive.

Discover more joy every day, in every way. Life is good.

Welcome to the month of gratitude and Thanksgiving!

Friday, October 16, 2015

October, the Month for Spirit Dances

Here we are at Halloween, a beautifully dark fall evening. What began as a Celtic holiday, Samhain, for remembering our dead and wishing them well on their journey into the next world, is also celebrated by Mexicans as The Day of the Dead. Two different cultures, half a world apart, yet at the heart of the holiday is exactly the same sentiment. For those of you who wish to make the journey, The Longmont Museum always has an excellent exhibit created by various members of the community, which features displays created for the Day of the Dead. I go every year because it is always an inspiring display.

In the Mexican tradition, people set up a table with a photo of the person they wish to remember. On the table, they have a plate of that person's favorite food, plus other things they enjoyed during their life. So the table could include a deck of cards, a favorite book, a musical instrument, piece of sports equipment, whatever would help remember that person. In the Celtic tradition, there was the Dumb Supper, which is when a place was set at the table for the person who died. And perhaps a photo of that person would grace the room. People might tell stories about that person or sing a favorite song of theirs. In both cases, the idea is that we are inviting the spirits to join us in preparing a going away offering to that person, acknowledging that we will miss them and wish them well on their journey into the next world.

The Day of the Dead celebration traditionally features a character named La Calavera Catrina, a skeleton wearing a fancy hat and a dress who is dancing her way from this world into the next. It is an affirmation that life goes on for our spirit when it leaves the body.

All month long we dance with the spirits whether we actually do one of these rituals or not. As we head into the dark and cold of winter, we acknowledge that we are interacting with spirits as they take one last look around where they used to live.

We also dance with spirit in other ways. We dress in costumes and take on another persona for evenings when we go to Halloween parties, and there are Halloween parties all month. Our spirits dance as they play out some other character that we would rather be for an evening. It is a way of summoning other spirits while we let our imaginations play and for a brief while we try on the feeling of being someone else.

We also dance with spirits as we face the onset of winter, and we see in nature the trees and shrubs whose leaves have turned many beautiful colors that are now letting go of its summer adornment, and the leaves fall to the ground, revealing the skeletons of the trees.

Many of us engage in our semi-annual sleep disturbance brought about by the silliness known as daylight savings time, so we set our clock back and enjoy the darkness. This is also a season when I crave a night of classical music that summons richness and the orchestration of many different instruments, many different sounds into one coordinated sequence of movements celebrating harmony and beauty, especially in pieces featuring a violin as the lead instrument.

We let our playful spirits use parts of nature to make colorful and whimsical decorations with pumpkins and leaves. Color and music dance with our spirits too. Our spirits really feel like dancing in the season of colorful change that we are celebrating.

It is fun watching all the little kids in their costumes continuing the tradition, even though they do not know yet the roots of the traditions they follow, that of the soul cakes and the dumb supper. They celebrate the harvest of candy, and it is a great holiday for kids as a fun time to dress up and get treats from their neighbors.

Falling leaves signal the shift in seasons with more certainty every day, as less leaves are on the branches and more on the ground. We celebrate all that we have harvested this year as well, and we have some food on our shelves for the winter and we work and look toward the future, pulling a card for the year.

We know that this lifetime will end one day, and these festivities encourage us to celebrate the life we have now, dancing with the spirits of those in our lives now, the spirits of those who have left recently, and the spirit of things to come.

Spirits always dance in this season, and we dance with them.

Wednesday, September 16, 2015

The Magic of Saying Yes

An interesting development I have noticed is that my spirit guides are prompting me more and more to say yes to unusual requests.As a result, the results are usually very beneficial.

One example is that for many years, my past life sessions were mostly regressions. This process just takes a while, and must be done in quiet, thus requiring a private session lasting one and a half to two hours in length.

However, many clients kept asking for a shorter faster method. They wanted to know more about their past lives but they wanted to find out something within shorter time frames. So I began doing clairvoyant past life readings within the confines of the metaphysical fairs that I do and also shorter clairvoyant readings at my home office or via Skype. I need the visual contact in order for the clairvoyance to show me pertinent information for each person. And I am getting confirmation from the clients that these are very effective and helpful. For those of you unfamiliar with the term, clairvoyance is simply clear seeing, using psychic vision and no other tools. My spirit guides are helping me bring through excellent readings for my clients.

Recently another unusual choice was when the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art invited me to participate in a special program this summer doing readings with a poet whom they assigned. I have never done anything like this before, and the performances turned out fantastic. The museum and the clients were thrilled with the results. The assistant curator described our collaboration as amazing and we were invited to do this not once, but three times. The poet and I are open to doing more of this and are looking for more opportunities of this nature.

A third request seemed very odd yet, I immediately felt my spirit guides to say yes. I was at a business expo a couple of years ago and a woman was manning a table to recruit help for the home health care service she was working for. I was set up as usual to do tarot readings. So this woman came over and got a reading, and remarked that she thought that maybe some of her co-workers might also be interested in getting readings. So the following week she called me and I thought this is what she was calling about. But her reason for calling was much different. She told me that she had two male patients who needed a male caregiver and all of her staff was female. She asked me if I had ever thought of doing that kind of work. I said no, I had never thought about it. I did not know why, but I felt certain that spirit had sent her to me and wanted me to help her. So I said yes, and for a year I took care of these two men. I did it part time in addition to my readings. The pay was awful, which is why caregivers are always needed, but that was not my reason for doing the work. I also did not tell most people that I was doing this. I did it for one year and it was an unusual learning experience.

I have a few more experiences that I will share in another post, but the key point is this. Often when we are presented with an unusual request, spirit is behind it. There is some life lesson that they want us to learn. Even when we may say no at first, the question may be asked again. Spirit may be presenting these opportunities because we needed some other stimulus for opening our awareness and raising our perception. Saying yes to even the odd or at first unappealing requests may open doors that yield psychic treasures, amazing real life developments and gratifying discoveries.

Saying yes keeps our energies flowing.

Death as a Gift

Earlier this year, a new neighbor moved into the apartment next to mine. He was a polite and pleasant person, so we would get together and chat a couple of times a week. 

Then Saturday morning, just as I was heading off to work, a stranger stopped me and asked if the dumpster by the parking lot is the one we are supposed to use. I answered his question and then told him that I didn't recognize him and wondered who he was. He then told me that his brother had just died two days before of a heart attack. He said that he had called 911 but that he was gone by the time the ambulance got there. He was talking about my neighbor. 

I was shocked because he did not look like he was struggling with physical health. In fact, he had just gotten a bicycle a month ago and was enjoying riding it. 

How odd it seems when a person a good bit younger than myself, about a dozen years younger, was just hanging out and talking with me just a few days ago suddenly dropped dead. Sudden deaths and young deaths are always the ones that jolt our consciousness the most, compared to a person who we know has been struggling with a serious disease for a long time.

A quote that I have found helpful in these types of circumstances is one by the groundbreaking and influential author Carlos Castaneda.

“Death is the only wise advisor that we have. Whenever you feel, as you always do, that everything is going wrong and you're about to be annihilated, turn to your death and ask if that is so. Your death will tell you that you're wrong; that nothing really matters outside its touch. Your death will tell you, 'I haven't touched you yet.”

Carlos Castaneda, Journey to Ixtlan

When we are jolted by the unexpected death of someone near us, I keep my perspective by knowing that I am still alive because it is not my time to die yet. This awareness wipes out the fear that a person may carry around for a while when they think thoughts like "I wonder how much time I have left?"

Knowing that it is not our time yet, we can get up every day and embrace the fact that we still have more time and more to do, and take a look at what those things are that we most want to do. This helps us make the important choices and silences the question that some people ask when they ask "I wonder what I am supposed to be doing?" You are supposed to be doing whatever you feel is most important to do. Amazing how the answers change when we tell ourselves that it is important to act decisively and shake off lethargy and clarify our visions for ourselves.

In this way, death can be a gift reminding us to be more conscious in appreciating and fully living this day we are in. 

Monday, August 17, 2015

Is Your Heart as Light as a Feather? Part 2

I don't know about you, but I feel as if I have lived more than one lifetime in this lifetime.

Yes, I feel that there is truth and useful information in recalling and considering our past life stories.

Yet, when I look at some of the events of this current lifetime, I can see them from a distance, as an outside observer, and it is as if several other people have lived lives using my name and my current evolution is light years apart from those earlier lives.

In my experience, my spirit guides are becoming an increasingly active influence in my readings. They are assisting me in delivering ever better readings.

The individual mentoring sessions I am doing with those clients who are working with me in ongoing ways are producing ever better results. How is this happening?

Think of it this way. We often think of talking with spirit when we want something. But to develop this communication, it must be a dialogue, a two way street.

Consider, when we have a friend who only calls on us when they want something from us, after a while, do we get tired of getting calls from this person? Yes, of course, and eventually we drop them and replace them with new friends.

So too, with our spirit guides. When we take a little time to thank them every day for what they have done for us, and spend a little time just listening to them, they are more receptive when we ask for some help, same as real life friends who are there when we need something same as when they need something, as well as sharing the joy of companionship.

It pays to remember the law of attraction, like attracts like, sympathetic magic, we get back what we put out.

Who are your friends? Who are your spirit guides? Do you feel that this current version of your life is a vibration higher than our earlier life? Are we experiencing more joy? Are you operating from a higher consciousness? Is your heart more open now? Are you less judgmental and more compassionate, more kind, more considerate?

Are your current experiences resonating in a whole different way than earlier experiences?

Is there more joy and peace in your life now? Would you like to have more of that feeling? Notice how many of your choices come from love and how many come from fear. Watch how the flow of energy in your life shifts when you make more choices out of love.

Notice how your spirit lifts you up. Notice how you feel like you have a whole new life while you are still living in this one, except you now feel yourself living on a lighter level seeing everything in a whole new way.

Would you like that?

Tuesday, July 21, 2015

Is Your Heart As Light as a Feather?

In the Egyptian mythology, the goddess Maat weighs a person's heart, which they equated with the soul, at the time of their death, and if their heart is light as a feather, that person gets to move on to the next level of consciousness, the next level of existence.

Is your heart as light as a feather? Do you do the things that make your heart sing? Or do you plod through life not believing that you could be more or do more? Have you ever said things like "I hate my job, but at least it's a paycheck?" Have you ever said "My marriage really sucks, it has been that way for years but I don't want to leave until I get a better offer?" Have you ever said "I have always wanted to dance, but I don't think I am coordinated enough?" Have you ever said "I have always wanted to see that place, but no one wants to go with me?" Have you ever said "I have always wanted to learn more about that, but I never seem to have the time?"

Your heart will never be as light as a feather until you ask different questions and get different answers.

All of us can make our hearts light as feathers if we choose from love instead of fear. We can make our hearts lighter if we are kind to other people. We can make our hearts lighter if we do things that bring more joy into our life.

When we are living with joy and love, we are radiant and others can see that inner light glow through us. When we are living with light in our hearts, we enjoy all aspects of life: our work, our relationships, our play, our life in this world.

Changing our thinking is the first step on the way to lightening our heart. Positive thinking can light the light. Would you like to make your heart as light as a feather? How do you think it would feel to live that way?

Friday, July 3, 2015

Mentoring Your Manifestations

I have been thinking about how we can continue our relationship in the most flexible and useful way.

What I mean is this. One of the main types of service I offer at metaphysical fairs is tarot card readings.

However, for steady growth and development, you probably could use other of my services, beyond tarot readings.

As a mentor, there could be a number of things I can help you with. For example, perhaps you would like to spend some time looking into your past lives to see what you can learn in this way.

Then again, maybe you would like to spend time doing some energy work, learning about your chakras, learning ways to clear, strengthen and heal your energy fields.

Another beneficial thing would be to spend some time doing meditation with light percussion or visualization.

Maybe you would like to do some dream work.

Mentoring can also include sessions where you simply want to explore possible paths and life choices that are presenting themselves. A combination of discussion, accessing my clairvoyant abilities and insights based on experience. During major life changes in career, relationships, spiritual development and more, this flexible mentoring approach can be most helpful.

I am offering a special bundles of sessions at a significant discount as a way of expressing my gratitude to you and to be able to offer you a variety of ways to help.

There is a maximum amount of freedom here. You are buying some of my time and energy, but how you use it is totally flexible.

Package of 3 half hour sessions for $129 (my normal rate for these would be $150)

Package of 3 one hour sessions for only $199 (my normal rate for these would be $300)

Package of 3  90 minute sessions for $299 (my normal rate for these  would be $450)

If you would like to engage in a mentoring program that encompasses a larger view and a longer term of development, consider this:

A series of 24 one hour sessions, consisting of 
2 hour life assessment session to clarify your life purpose
2 sessions on your vision for your directions, your goals
2 sessions to explore pathways to achieve your dreams
2 sessions focusing on your spiritual gifts
5 sessions on personal energy development
5 sessions of developing intuitive skills
4 sessions on self healing practices specific to you

This is a total of 21 sessions, and 2+1 = 3, the number of manifestation, the power of change in your life. The initial session would be 2 hours, and all the other sessions 1.5 hours each, or 32 hours of my time, for a total of $1899. This same amount of time, purchased one session at a time, would normally be priced at $3200.

If you would prefer to make all of your sessions one hour each (after the initial 2 hour session) for a total of 22 hours, the tuition would be $1299, compared to the normal price of $2200.

Because of the huge discount I am offering to mentoring clients, I am requesting payment for these bundles of sessions in advance.

Are you ready to manifest your dreams?

If you have any questions, please ask.

What Do We Mean By Freedom?

Every year at July 4, we set off fireworks to celebrate our freedom as a nation. It is always fun to watch those bursts of color in the sky and as we look at them, think about the limitlessness of the universe and the joys of creation and the excitement of victory.

What a great time to think about how we want to use our freedom to create the future direction of our lives. So in that spirit, I have created new offerings for all of you, my present and past clients, to find better ways for us to work together.

One of the things I like best about doing my work is knowing that I have helped others. Working together through a number of sessions helps you achieve more of what you want to achieve with a plan tailored to meet your needs.

When we have a clear vision of our lives and a sense that we are following our path to that goal, notice the increased feeling of freedom! Isn't that what we really desire?

Monday, June 1, 2015

Summer Magic and Spiritual Refreshment

It is summer and the time when many of us break from our routines to enjoy entertainments that refresh our spirits. Summer vacations and activities are meant to lighten us up and let the joy of the season bring a lighthearted break from work. 

One of the most popular plays of all time is Shakespeare's Midsummer Night's Dream, which is about the characters slipping in and out of different versions of reality, traveling in alternate universes to the delight and amusement of audiences.  

 Do you think that is worth a few moments of consideration?

For example, we often ask ourselves questions about our life's purpose and why we have taken on some of the patterns we have in our work and our love life. Many of us have changed our religious and spiritual practices. Some of us have also included new activities in our lives, especially creative activities that we had put off and now decided to finally use to express ourselves and give ourselves a creative outlet. New joy and energy come into us when we finally decide to quit thinking about something and do it. When we dance, make music, art, start writing or just go for more walks, we suddenly feel the flow of joy and healing.

What are these other dimensions? They could be parallel worlds where things seem to operate differently.

Consider the distance or closeness you have in various aspects of your life. Do you feel sometimes that you are an observer here? That your point of view is fluid? This often happens when we are in a major transition, and has everything to do with our progress in adjusting, changing or verifying the path that we are on.

We are spirits having a human experience rather than humans having a spiritual experience. Have you given any thought to the ramifications of this concept? How do you view your life? 

If you would like to talk about this, give me a call. 

Dreams do come true and the experience of fluidly moving between dimensions can be as magical for us as it is for Shakespeare's characters.  

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Create or Discover?

We don't discover our life purpose, we create it.

Often we know what we want to do, but allow interference because the interference allows a reason for postponing action. Going forward takes courage, so the reluctance is simply a fear of failure.

If we have thought about resuming something that we once were good at and we felt good about, then doing that again will inspire us and stimulate good feelings about ourselves. So why not do it?

If we have been thinking of writing, playing an instrument or taking dancing lessons for some time but not acted on it, what stops us, fear that we might not be great? True, not everyone will be great, but with practice, we can be good, good enough to entertain ourselves and others.

And what if we have often had thoughts of starting our own business? If we take steps in that direction, doing what needs to be done and perhaps starting by doing a few small projects before tackling bigger ones, we can find a way to manifest our dreams.

Thoughts that keep coming back to us are ways that our spirit guides communicate with us.

Whether it is about expressing our creativity or starting a business, we already have a feeling about what we really want to do. We already have a feeling about those things we are good at or want to be good at. We know that being good at those things and going ahead with our dreams will also be helpful to others and enhance our relationships with people, so it is not that we do not know that.

We just have to act on those thoughts. Yes, there may be times when we have to give some thought as to what is next, but once we have that vision, the next thing to do is act on it. This is how we create our life purpose.

Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Our Foolish Experiences

I feel the vibrations of life moving along faster all the time. I know that many of you are feeling it too. It seems as though we are inspired to make decisions quicker and take action on things we have been postponing. All this is good because it clarifies our focus.

Some who have undergone a sudden shift in careers are still adjusting. Some who have been muddling along in relationships that are unsatisfying have decided to opt out and search for a relationship that is more spiritually and emotionally aligned with their persona.

During these times of transition, we may often catch a glimpse of old traumas, feelings and thoughts  that need to be healed so that we can move on to greater freedom and happiness.

Times of turmoil often present us with opportunities to find out what we can do. Challenges force us to dig deeply into our perceptions of ourselves and our situations to discover ways to resolve our difficulties and discover talents, skills and abilities that have been dormant. Once activated, we find that we are able to see things differently and recognize opportunities that we had not previously seen because our previous circumstances may have obscured our vision.

When difficulties have interrupted our life, we may have let that instance make us feel like a failure, but that is not the truth. What appears to be a huge setback can actually be a way for spirit to get us to stop, step back, take a deep breath and examine other options which can lead us to an evolved state of consciousness.

Consider for a moment the character of The Fool in the tarot. Although the first impression of many viewers is that this character is foolish, stupid, childish. Not necessarily. The dog is warning him or her not to fall off because he or she is busy letting his mind wander rather than watching where they are going.

However, the image could also be that he is stepping to the edge to enjoy the view. I once had a hiking buddy who would sit on the edge of cliffs, with his feet hanging down, eating a sandwich while taking a break. That was a bit too edgy for me, so I sat back on a rock and enjoyed the view without sitting on the edge.

Another thing we see in the picture is that the fool travels light, with only a small bag. He is out to experience and enjoy life. For a large portion of history, people would live and die within 20 miles of where they were born. Some still do. My mother has lived in the same house her entire life, while I have lived in several different parts of the country, learning new terrain, different customs and traditions and making new friends. When travelers are about to set out on their journey, the ones who are staying put often warn them that "it is dangerous out there. You don't know who you will meet or what will happen to you." This is true, and not necessarily bad.

Of course, many of our journeys that are more introspective cause people to think that we are foolish. Friends, relatives, lovers and others may question why we would want to learn about past lives, reiki, dreams, runes, tarot, psychic development and other subjects they view as "far out." But the journeys we take by reading metaphysical books, taking classes, or participating in groups stimulate a different kind of growth that comes from exploring our own inner resources. Some people simply have only learned to see things one way.

For example,back when I took up drumming as a spiritual tool, I bought my drums from a drum shop, and the owner of the shop asked me if I was in a band. When I told him no, he looked puzzed. "Then what do you want to buy drums and rattles for?" he asked. I told him that I like to play drums in circles with friends and that anyone who wanted to join in with us was welcome and I brought more than one drum to the circle both to experience different kinds of sounds and also so that people who didn't have a drum could borrow one. He responded that he had never heard of anything like that before and asked why we would want to do that. "Just for the fun of making music together, and building connections with new people, a simple way of creating unity with a bunch of strangers." Eventually he came and checked it out for himself and he really liked it, becoming one of our friends, and gaining new customers. I smile whenever I remember this because originally he could not imagine what we were up to because it was a whole new world view for him.

Another view of The Fool as depicted by different artists, is that he is a very powerful character because even though he has learned many important life lessons through his variety of experiences and his life journey, he knows that he does not know every thing. Our life journey is both internal and external. For all the lessons we may have learned, we know that there is still more to learn.

One of my favorite illustrations of this principle is the World Card from Ciro Marchetti's Tarot of Dreams. Here we see the fool, further along in his journey, still the fool, the adventurer, the traveler, the explorer, with many miles behind him, yet many more to go. This is an example of why some scholars say that the fool is numbered as zero, because he or she is both the highest and lowest card in the deck. The fool can pop in and out of sequence at any time to learn lessons and then continue on to the life journey which is never ending.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Why I Like Stand Up

Laughter certainly is good for us, and it feels like it. Comedy is often hard to recommend because one person's idea of funny may be totally different from someone else's.

I think that stand up is the highest form of the art because when a person is doing that, they are engaging the audience and entertaining using nothing more than their wits, their voice, and their body language to put on the whole show. They have to be sharp and dancing on that razor's edge or else the audience will know it right away.

The best are always coming up with new material and the ones who show up and simply repeat what they have already released on video will disappoint the audience.

I have also noticed how some who are great at stand up can become stale and boring in sitcom type shows.

And on the other hand, some comedians tear up those sitcoms and crack us up so hard that the audience wants more and we really get to see them cut loose on the road in a stand up role.

I appreciate these performers who can crack us up on laughter using only their wits. I think that is what keeps them sharp. I think that one of the reasons that sitcoms can get boring is that they have these scripts that crawl from the set up to the punch line and sponsors who may want to make sure that none of the jokes are too edgy. Sometimes they depend on the music, the sidekicks, straight men and props to carry the moment which can bury the real comic genius under a blanket of fluff.

Listening to a bit of stand up can lift the spirit and mood of a day pretty quick for me, and then I can always share the good times by retelling the jokes to someone else. What a great way to spice up a day or a conversation.

Ernie Banks & Picasso

When Ernie Banks passed away recently, I had this sudden recall from my youth because when I was growing up, I was an avid Chicago Cubs baseball fan and Ernie was for years, one of the most outstanding players on the team.

Later on, back in the 1970s, I worked for one season as a security guard for the Cubs. And that was a fascinating experience from a whole different angle.

Memory works in strange ways some times, because the incident my memory landed on was this.

Back in the 1960s, Chicago like other cities, was adding art to public places, so of course, going for a big name since they are a big city, they hired Picasso to create an original work of art.

I was at the unveiling, and I remember people in the crowd looking at the Picasso saying "what an ugly piece of shit! What a hunk of junk! We should have put up a statue of Ernie Banks and it would have cost a whole lot less."

There are a lot of us who still agree with that assessment.

Monday, February 16, 2015

Inspiration in the Atmosphere

I am working out every day, getting fitter and healthier all the time. I am motivated and will not allow myself to get lazy. And I notice that by doing so, I develop a rhythm to my days.

There is something I notice, and perhaps you have noticed this too. When I am working out and there are lots of other people working out, the whole place has an elevated energy level, so that even though I am doing different exercises than they are, I feel more energy from the whole atmosphere and it pushes my performance up a notch. That's a good feeling.

It is inspiring to know that I am succeeding in my goal and at the same time notice that other people are working to improve themselves too. We all have goals and we are working toward them, going about it differently in the shared space and there is a common sense of determination to do what it is we came here to do in the company of like minded spirits.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Keeping the Faith in Ourselves

One of the trickiest parts of achieving our goals and dreams is not to give up when we hit a speed bump or someone throws us a curve ball. If we keep the faith in ourselves and the goals we set, then we focus on our vision and keep moving into it.

The most important principle to remember is that all things come from either fear or love. When we choose from love it is always our best choice. Choosing from fear is always a lesser choice.

During my time developing my business, I have frequently been tested in this way. For example, when an opportunity came my way that I felt was not quite right for me, I passed on it, and within a day, other opportunities came my way. This has happened several times over the years. I keep reaffirming my vision and that energy of “like attracts like” brings more good developments my way.

Aligning with your vision is a very important thing. There are practical actions we can take to make our dreams come true, such as putting up a good website so that people know what we are about and what we have to offer. Handing out business cards to people we meet and attending events that appeal to like minded people are certainly positive steps toward bringing our dreams into reality.

Whenever we find ourselves presented with a choice that does not really suit us but we fear that if we do not take this option that we may not get any other good offers, then we are letting fear make our choice. Times in the past when I gave in to those fears and did something that didn’t really align with my vision, I usually regretted it. Time wasted acting out of fear is time not spent in a more positive way, in alignment with our dreams.

Notice how when we choose from love, even if the progress we make is small, we feel good because we know that we are making progress. When we choose from fear and people see us doing something else they begin to wonder if we changed out minds and we wouldn’t really rather be doing something else. So the signals we send out can start to put out a “like attracts like” message in a way that leads us away from our goal rather than towards it.

Obviously, some visions take a longer time to manifest, and we may be heading toward that goal by taking small steps at first. So whether you are at the stage of taking small steps rather than big ones still keep reaffirming your vision. Eventually small developments lead to bigger developments.

Another important thing to remember about this process is that sometimes we may discover that the way we make progress toward our goal may vary from the original plan. The important thing is that if our goal or vision for ourself is something that we really want then we will find a way to get there. The thing is that we may be provided a different route than the one we originally planned. As long as we see it leading toward our goal, rather than away from it, this change will serve the purpose.

Sometimes it is hard for us to keep the faith in ourselves because we may have a belief that we are not smart enough, strong enough or good enough to achieve higher levels. Perhaps others have said things like this to us in the past. That does not make it true. If we accept these judgements that others have put on us, then we are allowing these obstacles to block our path. We have the power to remove these self imposed limitations. We have the power to change our beliefs about our selves.

Notice what happens when you give yourself permission to succeed. Notice how all of a sudden this person who was told that they are not a good dancer is suddenly dancing and enjoying it. Notice how this person who was told that they were not a good singer way back when they were younger, all of a sudden is standing there singing and other people are enjoying hearing it. Notice how the person who thought that they didn’t have what it takes to be a salesperson now sees no obstacle being a great sales person now that they are selling something that they really believe in. Notice how a person who didn’t think that they were strong enough or creative enough to start their own business is now running their own business and making a living with it.

When you keep the faith in your own vision, you are giving yourself the gift of a happier life. And doesn’t it feel better to choose from love rather than fear when aligning your thoughts and actions with your vision? Remove those self imposed obstacles. Keep the faith in your self.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

The Interwoven Fabric of Reality

We all have those moments when we look back at our life and try and second guess the choices we made. We wonder how our life would have turned out if we had taken this job instead of that one, or if we had chosen to form a relationship with this person instead of that one.

Yes, there certainly are things we have done that were triumphant, brilliant and beautiful and there are other things we have done that were mistakes, errors in judgment, and screw ups.

Thinking like that is nothing more than indulging in fantasies because we are who we are now because of the sum of all the choices we have made in our lives. We can start over fresh right now by making new choices, we can refocus and rededicate ourselves to setting out on a new path now.

In my own personal journey, my path took turns that I had not planned on. For example, years ago I worked for a corporation that transferred me to different cities to work. These were raises and promotions for doing excellent work. However, personally it meant moving to places where I had no friends, no relatives, nothing but the job they sent me there to do.

So during the weekends I looked around for interesting things to do and meet new people. In one city, my best option was to join Sierra Club, go to their meetings and go hiking with them. That opened up a fresh perspective in my life, not just getting out and getting some great exercise, but also seeing other perspectives on the world that were totally separate from anything I did in my work. I began to notice more aspects of nature than I ever had before. I got a close look and listen at stuff that usually would not have captured my attention, and found that extended experiences like that were very calming.

In another city, I went to my first psychic fair and had my first readings. I had no expectations because it was an entirely new experience for me to be in a room with a whole array of different kinds of readers and healers. I not only got my horoscope chart done for the first time, but I also started getting massages regularly. Who knew? I didn't grow up in a world where people did these things. I had been experimenting with doing tarot readings myself before then, but I regarded it as a hobby or experiment. I didn't know that there were all these kinds of people doing this stuff professionally all year round. And I was amazed at what I discovered.

So I began to assimilate these new experiences into my life on a regular basis and little by little, the old me evolved into a new me. The old me that used to like to go to bars for drinking and dancing was eventually replaced by someone who liked to take long walks, do more readings with tarot cards get astrology readings and massages.

Then later on I was working in advertising and just to add a little variety to my life, volunteered to write articles for a metaphysical magazine, a music magazine, an arts magazine and a book review magazine. I craved other assignments besides writing ad copy and brochures. Then one day my mentor at the metaphysical magazine died and they asked me to become the editor and take his place, and I got paid to do it. So my life changed again. Who knew that fun would turn into a work opportunity?

So then my whole schedule became busy with meeting and interviewing all kinds of people, trying different things, going to workshops and talks, experiencing rituals and experiments in living that I had not known about before and being totally immersed in a world where all this was normal every day. I was always learning how to do new things myself because of this. And then I was responsible for giving other people assignments that changed their lives and mentored them as they changed. I helped create events as well as publications. Who knew?

As I look back, I could have taken different career turns, moved to other parts of the country, formed relationships with different people. But I did not. I made my choices, and that is why I am here now.

When I was younger, I never had any inkling that I would ever make a living reading for other people or doing healing work for other people. On another level, these arts that we choose to practice may stir something undefinable up inside us, something that hints at deeper meanings, profound lessons, and realizations that emerge out of the fog and darkness.

The level of communications from spirit, we are in a zone that electrifies our senses. There is a quickening and excitement of suddenly getting a flash that lets us see in a different way.

Reading cards, healing with reiki, doing house blessings, mentoring writers, reading without any tools, helping to mentor people as they shift into more positive thinking and exploring possibilities, our visions expand as our horizons expand. There is an aphrodisiac quality to it all, to be in love with life to be able to go beyond the immediate to the other currents that swirl around us and energies that flow through us. There is a beauty to the way art opens the soul and touches our core.

Sometimes there is humor as the meanings unravel themselves, and sometimes there is sadness at the changes. Whatever the specific answers to specific questions, there is always a mystery to the process as we unwrap these gifts from spirit.

And who knew years ago that the path we were on would lead us here now? When it looked like our path was defined and there was a track to follow up ahead, we thought we knew. Then when we shifted our path, whether by design or by accident, everything changed. Even our mistakes became opportunities.

This is what synchronicity means. There are no accidents in life. We are just not always able to see the pattern until someone else helps us see, then the whole world looks different and we change the pattern of our life.

I am happy to be where I am now. Are you happy with where you are now?