Dec 062011
 

I used to have an ambivalent relationship with holidays.

I loved them because I got to be away from work, do some special activities, and see friends or family that I didn’t get to see regularly.

At the same time, I dreaded holidays because they always got stressful. Even when I made reasonable plans, my commitments inevitably multiplied like bunnies and before I knew it, I was frazzled and distracted, doing things I’d rather not, and all with an obligatory smile plastered on my face.

But all that changed soon after I met my husband. He had begun a practice of going to Yosemite for Christmas.

When I first considered going, I knew immediately it wouldn’t work. I mean, what about all my holiday “stuff”?

Getting together with family on Christmas eve?

Christmas dinner and all it involves?

What about all the presents I had to buy? And wrap? And pack? And send? And give in person?

The cards I had to write and mail?

The tree to buy and decorate?

All the boxes of Christmas decorations to unpack and put out, and then pack away again.

All the cookies I had to bake?

All the Christmas parties to flit around to?

What about donations to the needy, the service work to do?

On and on. And on and on. Aggh!

But alas … Christmas in Yosemite sure did sound heavenly!

So I began thinking about how to do most of my other stuff ahead of time. Yes! I could do it before and while preparing for the 5 day trip to Yosemite! But the thought of that just freaked me out.

And then it hit me.

I had been moving through all my holiday activities like an automaton. Sure, I enjoyed some of them, and some of them touched my heart.

But most of them were not enjoyable or meaningful at all, or they added so much stress and took so much time or money that they were just not worth it to me.

A New and Improved Way to Do Holidays

And for the first time, I began to make conscious choices about how I wanted to spend the holidays.

I let all the had-to’s and shoulds just fall away in favor of the want-to’s.

We went to Yosemite at Christmas for a number of years and it was *magical*. We used the heater in our little cabin as our imaginary fireplace and opened our few little gifts to each other. We went to the fancy Bracebridge dinner at the Ahwahnee, a lavish affair with an 8-course meal. We ate bad food in the brightly lit and nearly empty cafeteria and had lovely exchanges with the cafeteria workers, and oddly, that remains one of our happiest memories. And I’ll never forget being in the tiny chapel there with snow falling gently outside, while 2 young kids in front of us fought loudly over the candles for the candle-light service. My heart soared and I laughed and cried at the same time.

Those experiences enriched my life and made me a better person.

This was the point of Christmas.

Connect with the Holiday Spirit

You, too, can trade in your stressful pile of obligations for free time (*gasp*) where you can connect with the special meaning that each holiday embodies by nurturing its lovely spirit and bringing it to life.

You can make the holiday spirit a significant part of your experience instead of something fleeting you try to grasp or catch a quick glimpse of in-between commitments that have gotten out of control.

Examine Your Assumptions

Examine each thing you do and every person you connect with and ask yourself why you do it.

Did you merely “inherit” it and now just do it without choosing to do it? Without realizing you don’t have to?

Are you allowing others’ expectations to overly influence you?

Do you enjoy doing these things?

Do you enjoy being with these people? (Yes, ask this about family. Maybe especially about family.)

Can you afford it easily or does it add undue stress?

What are the results? Are they worth the investment of time and money?

Maybe you’ll find that some of these things really are where you want to put your energy. Good! Now you know. And the rest you can consider letting go of.

What Makes Your Heart Sing?

There are always trade-offs. So it helps to consider if there are things you might like to do instead.

Maybe you want to leave the newly freed-up time alone. Allow it to just be there and spontaneously enjoy it when it comes around … or not.

Or use your creative spirit to brainstorm some fresh, new ideas that have some life to them.

What does this holiday mean to you? How can you express that?

Who do you love? What do you care about? Do you want to make a connection or contribution?

What do you enjoy? What makes your heart sing? Don’t you deserve to commune with the spirit of the holiday for your benefit as well as for others’?

With just a little deliberate forethought, and feeling into your own heart, you can make the holidays a time to go deep instead of wasting them on meaningless, superficial activities.

Unless you like superficial! It does have its place. The point is to make conscious choices.

Give Yourself Permission

You’re a grown-up now, and no-one is the boss of you.

You don’t need to follow in the old traditions automatically. Of course, if you love them, then yes, indeed!

But spare yourself being an automaton for as long as I was. You can break free now.

Watch What Happens

If you’re like me, you’ll be surprised to find that the things you cut out are not missed. And if they are, well, you can do them next year. You can even do them just because. If they have value, do they need a holiday to go with? Maybe not.

As to the people you usually spend holidays with, perhaps they need to adjust to your new way, but they’ll come around before you know it. You’ll likely find that it’s not nearly so traumatic on them as you imagine.

And the time you do decide to spend with people is much more meaningful when you do it because you genuinely want to be with them.

Nowadays, my list is pared waaaay down. This year, we’re having a low-key holiday. We may or may not decorate, we’ll have a delicious meal that is simple to prepare, and I’ll give a few heartfelt gifts to my son and his family. (They may do a road-trip and arrive on our doorstep. If they do, I’ve got plenty of extra time to spend with them.) Lots of children — too many — in our area need hats and gloves (can you imagine?), and that’s my service/donation priority this season.

And that’s plenty.

It leaves me space to touch in regularly with the spirit of this beautiful season, and see where it takes me in the moment.

I wish you many spirited moments of your own this holiday season.

Thanks for reading!

How do you spend your holidays? Are they spirited? Would love to hear!


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That’s it!

I’ll draw 2 qualifying recipients on the Solstice (Dec. 21 here in NM). Please feel free to spread the word until then.

Thanks so much — and good luck!


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Dec 022011
 

Did you catch a glimpse of your elusive spirit this week? The one that sometimes hides out when you’re looking the other way?

This is the end of Week 1 of the 10 week online course “The Answer is Simple”. And week 1 was precisely about how to recognize that spirit of yours!

(The entire course is offered free by Sonia Choquette, and some of us are working it together here with a discussion at the end of each week. Join us!)

This Week’s Concept

Here are a few notes I jotted down as I watched the first Week 1 video:

• Who you are is not your story, ego, history, accomplishments, family, personality, community, etc.

• You are a spirit. You are unlimited! All those other things have limits, but you don’t. So change your identity. Say I am a divine, glorious, unlimited spirit!

• Spirit has personality. There are different kinds of spirits, e.g. Sonia says she is fiery. Some are calm, soothing, grounded. What kind are you?

• The key is to know that you are divine.

• Recognize and enjoy spirit. It’s beautiful and perfect. It is so powerful it gives you life.

• We’re here to grow. Life is school.

• Understanding your spirit makes life and lessons easier to navigate. It makes ups and downs more pleasurable to engage in. You’re immune.

• Notice Spirit frequency vs. Ego frequency

• Ego is insecure, etc. When you’re in ego frequency, you feel separate and pull away. You’re fearful, judgemental, etc.

• Spirit frequency is always peace, love, etc. You want to connect and participate.

• Practice and concentrate on recognizing your spirit.

• What do you love? What do you enjoy? What leaves you feeling inspired? Notice how your energy opens up.

My Comments

OK, yes, I’m going to do it. I’m going to disagree with Sonia on a few nuances. :-)

1. I think our spirits are a part of us (a more subtle version of our physical bodies), but I don’t think we are our spirits.

I think that our essential nature is even more basic than our spirits.

She says our spirits are all different (i.e. hers is fiery, some are calm, etc.) and as I understand it, she is speaking of something that is manifesting at some level. If it weren’t it wouldn’t have characteristics, even subtle ones. (Then during the practice video, she says that our spirits are all the same spirit, which sounds a little like a contradiction to me. I do agree we are all one, but our spirits exist as subtle energy bodies and are not the same spirit any more than our left thumbs are the same thumb.)

I think that at our core, we are pure consciousness. That might not even be the right word for it, but it’s a beingness that doesn’t have any “qualities” that we can perceive. It doesn’t change at all that I can tell. It’s always the same.

And I said I “think” that, but I’ve come to that idea through experience. It’s not just something I read or heard.

The best I can do to describe what I’m talking about is to refer you to John Sherman’s conversations so you can see for yourself.

2. I’ve been playing with getting the word “unbound” (or something similar) into my tagline. I take all her talk about us being unlimited as an encouraging nudge.

3. Another slight disagreement. I used to agree that life is a school, but now I’m not so sure.

I think we’re here to simply participate and enjoy (I like the Sanskrit word “lila” for this, the divine play) even more than we are here to learn and grow. We automatically grow and evolve just by being.

4. I agree that at our core, we’re immune. I don’t know that I believe our “spirits” are totally immune. Our spirits are still energy patterns (albeit subtle ones) and still subject to impermanence. Our basic selves are not; they are — or it is — immortal.

So, all that said, sometimes I “look at me”, or sometimes to my spirit. It depends on the application.

What do you think about the concepts she talked about?

This Week’s Practice

Here are a few more notes I jotted down when I watched the second Week 1 video:

Breathing brings you into spirit frequency. When in ego, you hold your breath.

  1. Breathe
  2. Share a breath with several different people (or pets). There’s only one spirit. (Here’s where I saw that contradiction I mentioned above.)
  3. Notice how doing this lifts your vibration and opens your heart.
  4. Energize yourself with breath when you’re in ego.

My Experiences this Week

First, I did pay more attention than I would have if I were just doing this on my own, so thanks to all of you who jumped in to do this with me! :-D I do think I got more from it as a result.

I made it a point to revisit the idea that I am not this personality; I am much more essential and basic than that. And more than just revisiting an idea, I actually did more of the “Looking” this week.

Monday I found myself in a total funk. Total. Funk. (On Weds. before Thanksgiving I impulsively decided to take Monday off. Now I know why! I knew at a deeper level than my conscious mind did that I was going to need it!)

I felt really pissy but at some level was still compelled to examine what was going on. I also did some Emergence which included some Channeling about it, and the results of that session were marvelous. Within the next few hours I just kept feeling better and better.

I took some time to do the breathing like Sonia suggested. I did notice that when I was upset in some way, my breathing was shallow … and I was in ego frequency like she said. When I focused on my breathing, and on breathing deeply, I was able to easily get in touch with my spirit as she described it. It felt good.

Your Turn

What do you have to say about the concept? What were your experiences? Can you make any suggestions or have some ideas for others?

Anything goes!

Please feel free to reply to each other, and maybe we can get a discussion going. (If it’s especially substantial, I’ll make a post out of it.)

If you’re not working the course, you can still jump in with your thoughts. And next week you might want to join us!

Also, since this is the first week, I’m playing around with the format of this weekly discussion/report post. Fellow-ettes: Let me know if you want to see something different. ;-)

Thanks for joining in! :-D

And now: On to week 2! See you next Friday!

Quick note: Thanks to Lindsay at The Daily Awe, Lightspirited Being has been nominated as the “Best Personal Development Blog of 2011“!

I’d be thrilled to make it into the top 50 but can’t do it without you.

If you like this blog, I’d so appreciate it if you’d head over there and cast a vote for it. All you have to do is say you “vote for Lightspirited Being” in their comments section. Thank you!


> > > Special GIVEAWAY Announcement < < <

I’m finding that a lot of people who like my services hang out on facebook instead of blogs. I’m trying to spread my wings there and would appreciate your help. :-)

To that end, I’m giving away 2 readings, YOUR CHOICE of 3 types! You can choose a:

All I ask is that you:

1) “Like” Lightspirited Being on facebook (button to the right if you’re reading this from the blog) AND

2) Write on Lightspirited Being’s facebook wall that you want to be in the “Solstice Drawing”

That’s it!

I’ll draw 2 qualifying recipients on the Solstice (Dec. 21 here in NM). Please feel free to spread the word until then.

Thanks so much — and good luck!


 

Nov 172011
 

Sometimes our pets will act peculiar, either for a little while or for an ongoing period.

Did you know that often it has more to do with what’s going on with you than with them?

They do what they can to keep you and your family in balance.

A few years ago someone asked me to use my Animal Communication skills to find out why her dog wouldn’t eat. She’d already had him to the vet (an important initial step) and knew it wasn’t a physical issue.

As I tuned in I got that his hesitancy to eat was somehow related to her (his owner). He was feeling her stress and anxiety which got the ball rolling, and then her stress around his not eating just made the situation worse.

I can’t remember all the details anymore but she was also trying to get him to eat certain things … things that were good for him, but ultimately I got a sense of her being a little obsessive about his food.

As I relayed this information to her, gently suggesting she not be so rigid about his diet because her anxiety about his food and his eating was actually a big part of the issue, she “happened to mention” to me that she was in the throes of an eating disorder. OMG!!!

In this situation, not only was her dog picking up her own issue around food, but also her anxiety around his food plus her anxiety in general. It doesn’t always happen that they act out in the same area of life where we’re having our issues (in this case, food), but this example was just too perfect not to share.

Even when the connection is as obvious as this, we sometimes don’t notice because our issues are not the first thing we think about when our pets have issues. In this example, even with the symptoms being so similar, it didn’t even occur to her that they even might be related until after we’d talked.

Our Pets Act Out Our Anxieties

Any anxiety you’re experiencing will be sensed by your pet and if it’s strong enough, they will begin to act it out.

Anxiety Not Related to Your Pet

In most cases our pets are acting out our stresses that don’t even have anything to do with them.

Maybe you’re worried about financial issues, health issues (your pets often match your symptoms almost exactly), or you’re just out of balance.

These things will definitely affect your pet.

Often they just help us process these things and are no worse for it. In fact that’s a supportive thing we all do for each other in general as part of a social unit. Just like a mobile, we all do our part to keep our family in balance, and our pets are very much a part of that dynamic.

But if it’s intense or prolonged, they’ll begin to show signs in their behavior or their own health.

Anxiety Related to Your Pet

Sometimes they act out anxiety that is related to them.

When it’s because of something they’re doing, it can create kind a mad cycle if what they’re doing is originally related to your anxiety. It just gets worse and worse until you stop the hamster wheel.

But often it’s simply something you’re concerned about because you love them so much and you want them to be happy all the time. (See, I have pets, I know!)

Like you’re going to board them and you don’t want them to be bored (interesting pun, don’t you think?), so you worry.

Or you’ll be traveling and you think they might miss you, so you worry.

Or they’re limping a little bit all of a sudden, so you worry.

Essentially, you have to stop that!

Easier said than done, I know.

What to Do Instead of Worry

First, just reading this and being aware is going to go a long way toward preventing or correcting this situation.

But here are a few ideas for when you see them acting out or even suspect it’s happening.

Better yet, doing these things as a matter of course will prevent your pets from needing to act out your anxiety to begin with.

1. Take care of yourself

If you’ve got deep, ongoing issues of some kind, try to make sure you don’t keep pushing them into the background. Do what you can about them now. What that might be is beyond the scope of this particular blog, but you know what I’m saying.

As in my example with the eating disorder, there can be things like addiction, depression, a bad marriage, a job you hate, etc. that can easily be affecting your pets. Please take care of yourself and they will benefit as well.

This goes for ongoing, serious things and passing issues as well.

2. Take it lightly

As to things related to your pet, be aware that they are very likely to reflect your attitude right back at you.

Are you a parent? Remember when your child took their first few steps, and landed *plop* right on their butt? You find out quickly that if you gasp and panic and run over to soothe them, they quickly pick up that it’s a scary thing and start to cry every time they fall. But if you make a surprised, fun face and say something like “Go boom!” and laugh like it’s fun, they’ll soon be laughing each time and scrambling up to do it again.

It’s the same with our pets, and using this little trick works in all kinds of situations.

3. Be optimistic

Once, during a turbulent flight, my young son and I were both getting nervous. I talked about how planes handle this all the time, and put on an unconcerned attitude. I was surprised to learn that pretending to be brave for his sake not only calmed him, but it had the wonderful side effect of actually allaying my fears too! Soon, I didn’t even have to pretend. And guess what? There was nothing to be nervous about!

Again, just like with our children, this dynamic works with our pets too.

So even if it’s something that might have a difficult outcome, you have a choice. You can make a conscious decision to focus on the positive. New or tentative situations can be an adventure rather than a threat. If and when difficulty actually develops, you can always deal with that then.

In the meantime, keep in your mind that right now all is well.

(If you’re familiar with the Law of Attraction you’ll recognize this as also being a way to help assure a good outcome, and you probably practice this already anyway.)

4. Remember your positive motivation and goals

If you find yourself anxious or concerned about an upcoming activity, remember that you’re doing it for a positive reason.

What is that reason? Keep it in the forefront of your mind.

This is important for personal situations but especially those related to our pets.

For example, your pet needs to go to the vet. We can think about how scared they’ll be when they have to ride in the car (ya right — this is cats, not dogs ;-) ), get examined, get a shot, etc.

But better yet, we can think about how lucky we are to have good vet care, their ears (or whatever reason they’re going for) will feel better, the vet is doing this for them not to them, etc. Even if it’s for euthanasia, they will be relieved of their pain and can fly free, etc.

Or if you’re going to board them, instead of worrying that they will miss you or that they’ll be bored, think about how safe and protected they are in a nice warm building with regular meals and that cozy blanket you left with them.

There’s always a positive or you wouldn’t be doing it. So stay focused on that.

All that said,  it’s important to also remember that animals are sovereign creatures just as we are. They have their reasons for being here, they are strong and magnificent beings, and they deserve to be able to grow through challenges just like we do. It helps all of us when we honor that. We can’t and perhaps shouldn’t try to protect them from everything.

5. Deliberately communicate positive ideas to them

If you haven’t already, you may want to develop the basic skill outlined in my first article of this series “The Very First Step in Communicating With Your Pet“. It gives a simple way to communicate telepathically with them so you have proof and confidence that your pets really are connected intimately with your inner goings-on.

If you commit to practicing it even a little, it pays off in the long run with greater peace of mind for you and like we’ve discussed here, with your pet’s peace of mind as a result of yours.

There are more things you can do that help you be at peace in relation to your pet, for example, touching in with them when you’re separated. But these things are skills (and articles) in themselves, and we’ll cover them and more in later articles in this Animal Communication series about how to connect more consciously with animals.

For now, the idea that you affect your pet profoundly is an important concept to be aware of and revisit often. The suggestions I’ve given are good skills to practice for the duration of your relationship with your pet.

Do you have any examples of when you were mirrored by your pet, or others by theirs? Were you/they aware of it at the time? If so, what did you/they do about it?

Oct 302011
 

Tonight is the 5th and last night of Diwali, the Festival of Light, which is both a harvest festival and a joyous celebration of the Hindu lunar New Year.

This auspicious holiday celebrates light and prosperity.

The focus on this final day and night is to see the good in others (including those you’ve had issues with).

I’m appreciating you very much, and all you’ve added to my life.

To celebrate and to thank you, I made an audio for you today of the prayer “I Open” that I posted awhile back in written form: A Two-Minute Opening to Inspiration and Guidance.

I say it almost every morning while I warm my muscles in the jacuzzi in the backyard.

It’s a beautiful way to celebrate each new day and open to its gifts.

You can listen to it below, or right-click to download it here, and I hope you like it as much as I do.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

I wish you much light and many blessings in the year to come.

Namasté.

Oct 142011
 

If you have pets, you already know that talking to them in a way they can easily understand would be an especially useful skill to have.

Here’s a basic technique in how to send a message and get confirmation that it got through.

No matter what the ultimate purpose or situation, this is the place to start.

Later, when you really need to communicate something important, you’ll already have a connection established. What’s more, you’ll have confidence in that connection, resulting in greater peace of mind.

There are more advanced ways to communicate complex messages for complicated situations, but this is a perfect exercise to begin with. It’s a basic skill that you’ll need to have in place.

You’ll also find that even as simple as it is, it’s a valuable ability to have in its own right. You’ll use it all the time in all kinds of situations.

You’re Already a Team

In some ways, communicating with your own pet can be trickier than with an animal you don’t know. But that’s more true when you’re listening to them.

When you’re talking to them, you’re already connected and they are naturals at telepathic listening, so you’ve got an advantage right away.

That’s why learning to talk to them first is not only easier, but it’s also a fundamental skill to master if you want to advance to two-way communication.

A Strong Foundation

For the most peace of mind on both your parts, you want to practice together and develop your skill well before you actually need it. You want to know you’ve got it down.

Here’s how you can do this and get undeniable confirmation that they hear you and understand.

7 Easy Steps to a Basic Skill

Do this exercise when all is calm and nothing is at stake.

Choose something to tell them ahead of time; something very simple. It should be something positive and something that they would react to, such as a special treat or activity.

Make sure it’s something you’re able and willing to follow through on right after they get the message.

1. Be in the same room as your pet (or near them if you’re outdoors) when they’re relaxed and not involved in anything.

2. Relax and be still. Make sure you’re not giving any explicit or subtle subliminal messages about what you’re thinking.

3. Say their name to yourself, as if you’re calling them. This is to get their attention. Don’t worry if there’s no response … there usually isn’t at this point.

4. Give them the message you’ve already decided on. Do this primarily by imagining it in pictures. But don’t stop there. Use all your senses that can apply to conjure up the full experience. And feel it emotionally too. The more energy you can put into this step, the more chance of success you’ll have.

(It can help to visualize from your pet’s point of view rather than yours, but this isn’t always necessary. Experiment.)

5. Pay attention to your pet, and watch for any change at all. You want to get familiar with how they respond when they get the message. They’ll respond to different messages differently, but often they’ll at least turn and look at you. If it’s something they want, they’ll sometimes get up and come to you.

6. If you don’t see a response yet, you can form all the conjuring you just did into a “ball” and mentally toss it to them.

7. If you do get a response, or even if you suspect that maybe they got your message, then follow through on your promise right away! It’s very important not just to build trust but to confirm to them that you really were talking to them.

Don’t be disappointed if nothing happens yet. Repeat a few times. If still nothing after about 10 min. or so, then try again some other time. Maybe you weren’t really relaxed, or were preoccupied, or some other factor wasn’t in place. Sometimes it takes a few sessions before it all comes together.

When I experimented with these steps in preparation for writing this article, I was able to get confirmation from our lab, Ollie, that he had heard me within 5 to 10 min.

I didn’t get a response with one treat, so the second time through I envisioned a different one. (Oddly, the first is his favorite.) But even though he was snoozing and facing away from me, he just suddenly lifted his head, turned it toward me, and stared at me. It was as if I’d just called his name out loud.

Keep the Lines Open

You can also tell them that you want this to be a regular thing you do with them. Some animals are enthusiastic practice partners and you’ll notice a difference in them when you begin to practice regularly. They love the attention.

Since going through these steps with Ollie, I’ve noticed him reading my thoughts more. I was typing here at my computer and thought about taking him for a walk. He came over right then, sat by me, and just looked at me. This happened a few times. And then, just a few minutes ago as I was typing about the treats, it happened again! (That means he needs a treat now, right? Right!) We’re building a stronger rapport very quickly.

Practice Makes Perfect

So try this out as often as you have time for. Try to remember to do it for little, unimportant things that you would be doing anyway … Before you pick up the leash or the car keys. Before you reach for that special treat.

Once you’ve had success with this, branch out to things that aren’t necessarily positive or exciting for them, such as before you leave the house for awhile. Show them that they’ll be home alone. Notice that their response is different than if they’re going to go for a walk. Make a mental note of it and learn how to recognize their various responses.

Please come back and give me a report. Were the steps clear? Any questions? What happened? I’d love to hear.

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Sep 012011
 

If you have pets, you appreciate the value in being able to understand what’s going on with them.

And given the comments and emails I got after my recent animal communication post, it seems a lot of you wish you could hear what they’re saying to you.

Well I’ve got news for you: You can!

It’s a natural ability, and all it takes is a little coaching and for you to begin to experiment with it.

So I thought I’d give you a few pointers about how to receive messages and let you try your hand at it right now.

A Practice Session with Ollie

Our sweet yellow lab, Ollie, has agreed to talk with you today. (He’s not talked with strangers like this before and thinks it might be interesting.)

Believe it or not, it’s easier to get unbiased impressions of an animal you don’t know personally than one you do, so this is a good way to start out.

I’m going to give you one question to ask him; one that we can verify which is important when you’re learning.

You can leave your impressions in the comments (or email them to me if you prefer).

If you get any additional impressions, even if you don’t know how to interpret them, leave those too.

I’ll reply to each comment (or email) with individualized feedback on your impressions, much like I did for the example online practice sessions I showed you here.

So you’re essentially getting a free lab class. (Agh! Excuse the pun.)

[Note: My replies are on a special feedback page so you won't inadvertently see the answer to the question before you do the exercise. Do NOT go to that page until after you've done your session and commented with your impressions. The link to it is toward the bottom of this post.]

Ready to have some fun? Good! Let’s get to it!

A Step-by-Step Animal Communication Session

Go somewhere you won’t be disturbed. You might want to have something to jot down some notes with, or have an audio recorder handy.

1. Calm yourself. Use any technique you normally use. This doesn’t have to be extreme; just so you can focus calmly.

Ollie

2. Look at his photo. Look him in the eye and softly examine him — but not with your intellect; with your heart. You’ll likely get a few impressions right off the bat. Make a note of them.

3. Say hi. See if you can feel a connection.

4. See if he feels available to talk for a minute. Just like a person, if an animal is intently involved in something, he won’t be too communicative.

If yes, proceed. If no, try later.

5. Ask if he’ll talk to you.

If yes, proceed. If no, try later.

6. Ask the question.

Here’s the question for Ollie:

What do you get immediately after dinner every night?

If you want to make sure you’re getting through to him, you can ask with an image. Picture him just finishing whatever’s in his dog bowl (in the kitchen) and then looking at me.

You can prompt for details too if you’d like, e.g. Do you like it? How do you feel when you get it?

7. Pay attention to everything.

You probably already know that your first impression is important. Always note it. Often, that’s all you need.

If you don’t get an impression or if you get one that’s weak or “iffy”, you can specifically ask him to give you sensual information (e.g. What does it look like? What does it smell like? If it’s an activity, what do you see or how does your body feel?)

You can also probe for other details (e.g. Is it a thing? Something he plays with? Does he eat it? Is it an activity? Is it a job?)

And a simple yet effective technique that’s a good foundation for any intuitive work is to run through your senses one by one and see what you get.

a. Sound

You may “hear” a word or phrase describing the object or activity. This is common with animal communication.

Or you may hear him getting the thing or hear what someone in the vicinity would hear.

b. Sight

Watch for any visual impressions. You may sense a shape, a color, or maybe some thing(s) you recognize. You may see what he does once he gets the object or activity.

If you see something that’s unique to you, then it’s likely that it’s symbolic, so see if you can get a feel for what it might mean. If it’s something common or something new to you, then it’s probably a literal answer.

c. Smell or Taste

Physically breath in and see if there’s a scent in your “mind’s nose”.

Move your tongue around in your mouth while still in touch with him and see if any tastes come to mind.

Sometimes, you really will smell or taste things. It will seem like you’re experiencing it with your normal sense (vs. 6th-sense).

d. Touch

The best way to do this is ask him to relay how it feels to him. If an object, how does it feel in his mouth right after he takes it, or in his paws or near him afterward? If it’s an activity, what does it feel like as he does it?

You can also just see if you get a sense of how it would feel to you. If an object, imagine it in your hands. Soft? Fuzzy? Hard? If an activity, what does it feel like? A breeze? Is it wet?

It helps to run through questions like this, especially if you’re new.

Accept the impressions you get and make a note of all of them.

8. Now say thank-you and goodbye … and then disconnect. You can do this by seeing the connection between you as something visual, and then just watch it come apart as you both go your own way.

You’ve done it! So, how did it go for you? What answer(s) did you get?

Whenever you do this kind of thing, it’s helpful to tell someone what you got. It acts as an acknowledgement to your subconscious that you pay attention and value your subtle senses.

If nothing else, make a written note of the session for yourself. Keeping an “intuition journal” can be helpful for you to begin to see proof in black and white that you are indeed intuitive.

In this case, of course, give us the scoop!

So now, leave your impressions and notes about your conversation with Ollie today. I’m eager to hear what you got and to give you feedback. After you leave your comments below, you can go to this special feedback page for the answer and a little while later for your individualized feedback.

And if you like this kind of thing, we can do more in the future. Be sure to let me know.

Thanks for playing! (And Ollie says Woof! ;-) )

+ + + + +

I almost forgot to say that I now offer animal communication services, and the low introductory rate is still in effect for a little while longer.

Thanks to Lindsay at The Daily Awe (and her sweet dog, Chester), who helped me experiment with how to structure the sessions. She wrote an article about the experience today. Do your session with Ollie, then go check it out!

And while I’m at it, thanks to Angela at Powered by Intuition too for suggesting a practice session here. I’ve modified her idea a bit but still: thanks, Angela! And go check out her blog too, she writes super-useful articles!

+ + + + +

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on a special feedback page
Aug 162011
 

Are you itching to be intuitive but that secret ON switch just keeps eluding you?

Let’s get to the bottom of this so your intuition can guide you like it’s meant to.

Our Senses

In order to survive as humans, we’ve developed very sophisticated senses.

We’ve needed them so we could keep our attention on what’s “out there” lest we be hurt by something or miss something helpful.

It’s natural for us to continually scan our environment, take it in, and decide what’s relevant.

Our Subtle Senses

Just like our 5 senses that everyone acknowledges, we’ve also developed other senses, and for similar reasons.

They’re much more subtle and we tend to experience what they perceive as being “in here”.

But make no mistake. You do have them. They’re natural. We see them at work in the animal kingdom all the time.

They’re sometimes called your “sixth” sense, or your “extra” sensory perception (ESP).

And they’re also known as “intuition”.

The word “intuition” has a root that means to “perceive directly without reasoning”. Do you ever do that? Of course you do!

And you couldn’t turn it off if you tried.

The BIG Secret About the Switch

So the biggest secret is that there is no switch.

You don’t need a switch.

Your intuition’s already ON, and you’re already intuitive!

I know, I tricked you with that headline. Sorry. But really, there must be some doubts lurking around in there, a part of you that sorta-kinda thinks maybe you’re missing something, or else you wouldn’t have been so eager to find out how to turn your intuition on.

Am I right?

If that’s the case, then stick with me. ;-)

I know, I know. Lots of you do acknowledge that you’re intuitive, and your curiosity got the best of you. Well, I’m still glad you’re here because I think you’ll like this next section a lot.

We’re Intuitive In Spite of Ourselves

Here’s a remarkable example of our intuition at play, even when we’re not paying it the least bit of attention.

Many years back, a long-distance friend and I played a weekly intuitive game.

Each of us would choose an image, place it in a silver frame, and focus on it. At the same time, we would email a photo of the framed image to the other, but the recipient wouldn’t look at the email right away.

During the week, we would see if we could sense intuitively what was in the other’s frame. We would jot notes or sketch images. When we were ready, we would look at the email of the image and see if we intuited it correctly. Simple.

The image I drew & tossed

One week, I decided to draw the image to put in my frame. I had a vague idea in my head and sat down and played with getting it on paper. In the end, I didn’t like it at all. So I crumpled it up and threw it away, and then I made something else and framed that instead.

While I was doing that, I wasn’t even thinking about what was in my friend’s frame. That wasn’t the point, after all.

Her email had arrived that morning but I still hadn’t looked at it.

I didn’t know until later what a remarkable thing just happened.

“Accidental” Intuition

It was days later when I finally looked in my email and I could not believe my eyes.

Her framed image was almost exactly like what I had originally drawn for my frame soon after she had emailed hers.

I dug through my wastebasket and found the crumpled drawing. Sure enough. Almost a spittin’ image! And I certainly was going for that same feeling of joy.

Framed image by my dear friend, Linda Rae. (Used with permission.)

This is a perfect illustration of us being intuitive even when we’re not trying to.

When I was drawing what I planned to send her, I wasn’t trying to intuit what she sent me yet. (And the fact that we were preparing to play an intuitive game is beside the point, too.)

I was, however, relaxed, in a slightly playful mood, and apparently receptive even without knowing it. (I’ve since noticed that the creative state is much akin to the intuitive state. And both involve alpha and sometimes theta brain waves.)

This fluid state left me naturally open to a mixture of the subtle senses of telepathy (reading her thoughts) and/or clairvoyance (seeing the image).

And by accident!

Or more to the point: Naturally and effortlessly. All on its own.

Just like with our more obvious senses, our subtle senses are continually scanning and receiving, whether we pay attention to that or not.

Claim Your Magic

So acknowledge that you’re intuitive. And if you still doubt it, there are stories like this everywhere. Allow them to convince you.

If things like this happen by accident, surely you can also tune-in intentionally.

Once you claim your natural subtle senses, it’s just a matter of strengthening and refining your skills. A wine-taster may have such a well-developed palate that s/he can describe all kinds of nuances that might escape you, but that doesn’t mean you can’t taste.

Same with your intuition.

Do you have some examples to share of “accidental” intuition?

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Aug 112011
 

Does your intuition lie limp a lot of the time?

Want to keep your intuitive muscles primed and get regular feedback from other involved intuitives?

Here’s a fun and useful way to do that.

Animal Communication

If you have pets or are an animal lover, you can connect with animals and exercise your intuition at the same time.

What a great combination.

I’ve had pets since the late ’80′s (not counting the numerous animals we rescued and nurtured when we were kids), and as an intuitive I’ve naturally wanted to be able to connect with them intuitively and energetically.

When I first ran across the T.V. show on Animal Planet called “The Pet Psychic” (no longer on the air), I thought it was nutty. But once I’d “accidentally” ;-) watched it a few times, I decided it was fascinating. How ever did she know those things?

It wasn’t long before I was studying and practicing animal communication myself. For those of you unfamiliar with that term, it’s an intuitive practice of two-way communication with animals (or any other sentient being).

How Online Practice Works

One of the things I did that was invaluable was to join a Yahoo group that was created specifically for the purpose of practicing. We had a great moderator who kept us on track … You had to qualify to join (it was just for people with training) and participation in the exercises was mandatory.

Someone would sign up to host a pet or animal (some hosted farm animals or neighbor’s animals) every week, post a photo and a handful of questions, and then we all would do our animal communicating and write up what we got for all the questions, and other impressions if we got any. The host would then provide feedback for each communicator as to their accuracy.

It was a safe and non-judgemental environment. We were all there to increase our skills (not because we were already supposed to be *perfect*) and many for our love of animals. Intuitives are a great bunch of people, I keep finding. ;-)

Benefits of Online Animal Communication Practice

Participating in an online practice group has lots of benefits and learning opportunities.

• It keeps you practicing regularly which is the magic ingredient for strengthening your skills

You learn to connect with a broad range of different types of animals

You’re exposed to a broad range of circumstances the animals are in or were in in the past

You get to see how other intuitives interact with the animals and you can try new methods

You get to see how other intuitives interpret their impressions and you learn from that

You learn how to summon up the courage to “put it out there”, which is a biggie

The non-judgemental feedback you get helps you hone your skills

You apply your lessons immediately because the next animal is ready before you know it

• When you have a “hit”, it feels great, it’s encouraging, and you learn from it

• When you’re off target, you can often glean what it is you were picking up and how you could interpret it differently — or you learn how to tell when you’re getting false information

The instant feedback keeps you involved — and accurate or not, you get right back “on the horse”

You’re in the loop about online classes and such (free and otherwise) by skilled communicators

If you have an animal that you host, you get lots of interesting and sometimes helpful info about them

• If you have animals of your own, you all benefit from your improved communication skills

I highly recommend doing something like this if you’re at all inclined.

It works especially well if you’re simultaneously using some other training materials to learn or grow your skills, since there’s no actual teaching or even coaching that goes on in the group itself.

Recommended Online Groups

Unfortunately, the group I was in ended after I was in it about a year and a half because the moderator couldn’t keep up with it.

But here’s another that was recommended by our moderator at that time. Just like ours it’s about practicing, and participation is required (not for every single animal, but they want relatively active participation).

http://pets.dir.groups.yahoo.com/group/ACPractice2/

A few others I found as I did research for this post are more for animal communication information and stories than for practicing, but that might be a fun place to start if you’re not real familiar with doing this yet. Both of these are fairly active groups.

This one looks big as there are over 2000 members.
http://pets.groups.yahoo.com/group/animalcommunication/

This one’s smaller with just over 500.
http://pets.dir.groups.yahoo.com/group/AnimalCommunications

Jasmine

Example Practice Session

Just for fun, I’m including an example of a Q&A session with a brilliant communicator who was in my practice group. It’s from a few years ago when I hosted our boxer, Jasmine (Jaz), for group practice.

Note that s/he knew nothing about me or Jaz and only had one photo of Jaz to go on.

It’s a great example of how a light-hearted, playful approach to opening to your intuition lets it flow and serves you well.

My responses are indicated with “***”. (Most practice reports are not this long. I had a lot of optional questions for people to pick and choose. This communicator did them all!)

Enjoy!

Q: What are your first impressions, feelings, knowings, sensations, etc.
A: Jasmine is a cool, no nonsense type of dog. She is calm, dependable and likes things to be a certain way.
*** That’s right. And she’s grown into her calmness beautifully.

Q: Does she want to talk?
A: She wants to walk with me, we walk for a while then she shows a pole in red dirt and says I tether myself down – when really freedom better suits my nature. I remind her this is about her, not me but I appreciate her wisdom.
*** Ha, that must have been your pole as she’s never tethered. There was a point where Zak (our other dog) had a broken leg but wanted to be out so we put a curly stake in the ground in the red dirt for him. She probably remembers that.

A: (cont.) Yes I love freedom to travel and just wander around and we agree, walking around in nature is the best. She draws my attention to an eagle.
*** We have 6 acres, fenced, and she is free to run. We also take regular walks in the bountiful nature around here. Never on leash. There are eagles around here, and/or perhaps that was symbolic.

A: (cont.) I notice she is limping a little on her back right leg and she tells me this is how it has always been, but she is ok.
*** YES, her back left is what is actually affected and she does limp (tho it’s sometimes hard to determine which side a limp is on from watching.) And YES, this is a condition she was diagnosed with very young (only 1 or 2) . She’s been very good with it.

These I know the answer to (or have at least observed and can get close):

Q: Describe her personality, at least the most prominent aspects. How does she view the world?
A: Life is an adventure to be lived, she takes me through a wall back in time – soldiers, horses ? Wild west I am unsure. She flashes many pictures at me and It is quite overwhelming. I feel like Jazzy is way better at this AC than I am. She laughs and tells me she has been doing animal communication much longer than I have.
*** She does seem to enjoy life immensely. It’s a little like the wild west where we live, complete with cowboys and horses. YES, I have known since beginning AC that she is my partner; she essentially told me this, and is very intense about communicating to us when she wants something.

Q: How did she come to me/us?
A: She came as a very young dog, after a few other homes – but yours has been her only true home.
*** RIGHT. She was 6 mos. old when she joined our family and had already been returned to her birth home about 5 times after failed placements.

Q: She had an unusual birth. Can she tell you about it?
A: She had to be cut out.
*** YES. Caesarean.

Q: Has she ever had a litter?
A: No and she does not feel like she missed out on anything. No need for her to be a mother this life. There has been plenty for her to do without getting pinned down with a brood of pups, more than enough or her to keep her eye on.
*** RIGHT. And I’m glad to hear she’s happy with that.

Q: Can she tell you about her family (i.e. who she lives with) and comment briefly on each of us?
A: You are her Mommy, you are kind and loving and most of all fun. Not always predictable and a little magical even.
*** That’s funny. I’m very gentle and loving with the dogs (firm when needed, of course). And definitely magical!!! ;-b

A: (cont) She shows me herself with a purple cape and a top hat – I don’t really know exactly what that means, but I guess she is magical too.
*** No doubt! And oh ya, once she did dress up with her siblings to pose for a postcard — I can’t remember what she wore, but maybe that!

A: (cont) She likes that and gives me a toothy smile. Anyone else Jazzy? A nice man, busy but kind, gentle calm energy – another dog and the !$$@$@ cat.
*** RIGHT. My husband and her seem to have a special bond. There is another dog, and there was a cat (whom she aptly described!) altho the cat has passed on.

Q: Can she describe my appearance (or personality or activities) for you?
A: You have wild hair and an exciting personality – I feel excitement from Jazzy about you. You were meant to be together!
*** I do have wild hair (ooo I love that description) and exciting? Well, I do speak in a very happy and enthused voice to her when we are doing anything even mildly interesting or if I am directing her somehow. I love having her in my life.

Q: What does she think of Ollie?
A: He is a bit of pain, but he will grow out of it. She loves him but at times could do without him. He is a great in small doses.
*** YES, This sounds exactly like what I would imagine she’d say. He’s younger than her (and came into our home after her) and is a bit goofy. More enthusiastic and inconsiderate than she’d like which can be bothersome when he’s a 75# lab! They are definitely good partners when exploring and guarding tho.

Q: Any thoughts or comments about Zach (or Zakkie)?
A: Aww she misses him, big love, lots of fun – her chest ached when she lost Zakkie and it is still tender.
*** YES, I so believe that. Zach is/was a dog — a yellow lab cross that we got as a pup from the Humane Association. He was about a year old when Jasmine came to live with us. They were very close, and he’s since passed away of cancer. He was always very sweet and gentle with her (except for when he was reprimanding her — for her own good, of course! ;-) . We let her see his body after he’d gone and I imagine that scene as you mention her chest aching. I think it was good for her to see him but I know it was a shock. (I had no idea then that I could forewarn her. Poor thing.)

Q: How is she with other dogs she is meeting for the first time?
A: She lets them know who is the boss and frankly they needn’t try any $$$!! on with her. (Assuming you know Jaz swears. Not really bad words – it could be to make me laugh, she is a great character)
If they give even a hint of a challenge, she will take them down. This is part of her no nonsense personality.
*** You put it perfectly well; even at her age she does not hesitate to let even the big dogs know she won’t take any — well, you know what word she would use. I’m delighted to know that sweeeet Jaz swears. Maybe she hides it from “mom” as we all learned to do…. ha.

A: (cont) Funnily enough I had a dog named Jasmine who was exactly the same! But she loved people, as does your Jasmine – again I tell her she is a cool dog and she agrees that she is!
*** Yes, she does love people. And yay for Jasmines!

Q: What are her thoughts on cats, specifically Schatzchen (or Schatzie)?
A: Yewww and a turned up crinkled nose! She lets her stay because you love it, but really would prefer it gone. The cat is rude to Jaz.
*** OMG, you’re right. Rude is the word. That cat was rude to everyone, actually.

Q: She’s had some special outdoor training related to a type of animal. What are the specifics?
A: She lets you know where snakes are? It’s her job to keep you aware.
*** VERY GOOD, she’s been trained to avoid them as we’ve got lots of rattlers around. (But she rarely lets me know about them as usually the dogs don’t even notice them and prance right by them. They let me practically step on them myself!) However, YES, she does keep us aware of other things, including other animals.

Q: Can she tell you about her relationship with her chewbones?
A: Omg Omg excited over chewbones!! She LOVES them with a passion and no other dog better try and take them if they know what’s good for them. She feels like a general over chew bones!! I see her in a uniform!!
*** RIGHT. And what’s especially funny is that if there is no other dog around, she couldn’t care less about them. It’s all about competition. But if there IS another dog, she will prance around with it and wag it in their face and lie down two inches from them to chew on it.

Q: What is one of her favorite things to do?
A: When she was younger she loved to run – she says she had loads of freedom and could run for miles.
*** YES. She ran like the wind and has always had lots of freedom. And we used to take many-mile-long walks with her frequently.

A: (cont) Now she still likes to walk but hangs closer to home, she likes hanging around the house – naps where she can dream lots of cool dreams. Again I see an eagle!
*** YES, she loves to be indoors with us even on gorgeous days and now that she’s older, well, we let her. She sleeps a lot — good to know she’s enjoying her dreams.

Q: What is her favorite thing to eat?
A: Beef – the smell of beef makes her back teeth water. I am almost drooling feeling her.
*** Good to know. I had a sense of that and trust your confirmation.

Q: In general, what are some things she likes? Dislikes?
A: She does not like baths or the cat trying to be superior. Well any animal trying to be superior she feels she is the animal boss at home and deserves respect.
*** Good, those are easy for us to avoid! I don’t think she’s ever had a bath. (Really. She’s never needed one.) She and Ollie seem to trade off the alpha thing and both seem comfortable enough with that.

Q: She’s had one chronic health condition most of her life. Can she tell you about it?
A: Stiffness in her back – but it didn’t hold her back, she could run REALLY fast she tells me! It has been an inconvenience – but not a disaster or anything.
*** EXACTLY RIGHT. It never held her back at all and she was really REALLY fast! I knew she loved that. At just about one or two years old she was diagnosed with a spinal condition called ankylosing spodylitis where some of her vertebrae are fused together with something similar to scar tissue due to inflammation. The area affected is near her tail and thus affects her left leg sometimes, causing that slight limp you saw as she warms up. It can be painful and is treated somewhat like arthritis.

Q: How does she feel physically these days? Are there any aches and pains?
A: Just the usual no big deal she says. I ask her to be specific – her neck is stiff, right shoulder , stiff back and right leg …Im not complaining she says. Her eyesight is not as good as it was and she misses clearer vision.
*** Great info. The back and back leg we’ve covered, so that’s definitely right on. I suspect that about her eyesight too — have seen signs of it, actually. I’ll make sure she gets more neck rubs and a few people have mentioned her right front leg.

Q: How does she feel emotionally? What does she “need”, if anything?
A: Glasses!! She is a great dog, great sense of humor! You have given her a great life, she is very content!
*** Wonderful to hear!

Q: There’s something that scares her; what is it?
A: Thunder, I feel her shaking – its something that she has become more afraid of over the years. Freaks her out because she doesn’t know what direction it is coming from or how to avoid it.
*** RIGHT. And YES, she does tremble sometimes if it’s especially booming and vibrating.

Q: Does she like her name (Jasmine or Jazzie or Jazz)? Comments about anything else I/we call her?
A: She loves her name, especially when she is called – “Jazzy Girl!” I ask why Jazzy Girl and it makes her feel soft and loved. Sometimes she gets tired of being big and strong and wants to be babied.
*** Good! And we, especially I, use the term “girl” with her a lot (sweet girl, good girl, beautiful girl) so good to know AND believable. And ya, she certainly loves to be babied.

These I can’t confirm but would love any impressions:

Q: Does she have a job/responsibility/purpose?
A: Yes she is the General, keeping everything in check, keeping you all and the home safe.
*** That she does, and I/we do feel safe because of her.

Q: Is there anything she’d like changed or improved?
A: She would like to walk or sit with you at night under the stars more? Or maybe you do this – I just see the picture and a feeling of peace.
*** Our jacuzzi is out back under the stars and we use it every night. She usually goes out with us and keeps an eye on things. It is very peaceful.

Q: Does she have anything else to say, either to you or me/us?
A: Thank you, I have a wonderful life – I could not of been happier than my life with you. She feels very emotional and she loves you very deeply, sincere gratitude for her life with you. She loves the location and the room to roam.
*** Wonderful, and as already mentioned, the location description is a match.

A: (cont) I thank Jaz for her time and ask if I can give her a cuddle and she accepts the invite – big sloppy kiss on my chin and she laughs and says “ I know you don’t let all dogs do that to you” I say nope but any dog called Jazzy is special to me! Thanks for the chat Jazzy Girl! love and blessings to you .
*** Thank you so much. I had such fun reading this and feel I can benefit too from what you were able to pass on to me. Best of luck in your further exploration of this. You are really good!

I hope you enjoyed this post, and would love to hear any comments, or questions you might have about online groups.

* * * * * * * * * *

Want to practice right now? Hop over to my mini-workshop. I give you 8 simple steps for making the connection and one question to ask our dog, Ollie. You tell me your impressions in the comments, and I give you feedback. Ready? I’ll see you there!

* * * * * * * * * *

And if you or anyone you know is in need of animal communication services, check out my new offering here!

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Jul 222011
 

I was listening to a business coach do a sample session this morning, and it was fascinating.

He was so good at helping people get past their blocks, and what he was doing seemed a lot like intuitive coaching to me (or how I would imagine good intuitive coaching).

I checked his website to see if he presents himself as an intuitive coach. Nope. Not a word about that.

But boy, did this guy listen.

He listened to what people said, and maybe more importantly, he listened to what they didn’t say. He read between the lines. He heard the thoughts and felt the feelings behind their words.

He then used his perceptions to help reveal, clarify, and organize. He worked with the callers to zero right in on areas where new awareness, decisions, and action can make the biggest difference. It was amazing.

And I got thinking…

Deep listening and intuition have a lot in common.

Do You Listen?

How well do you listen? If you’re like most of us, not very well. I often notice that very few people really listen anymore, and I’m just as guilty as the next person.

I think this happens because we’re usually on a mission of our own. We’re in active, output mode.

And then when we are in input mode, we’re often in a super-mental space (e.g. surfing the internet) or a zoned-out space (e.g. watching T.V.).

Or when we’re straddling the two modes, like when we’re in a conversation, we have our own thoughts going full-throttle in our head. “Ya, that’s right…” or “Well, that’s not exactly true…” or “When will he stop yapping so I can tell him about my much more interesting experience/thoughts/whatever…” Right?

And in groups, too often the person running a meeting has their own agenda and just does not give others their due.

Of course it’s not always this extreme, but I think most of us could listen much better than we do.

The Value of Listening

But oh, there are so many great reasons to listen. Here are just a few.

For the Other Person

Sometimes someone will want your counsel or advice. If you can really tune-in to what they’re saying instead of listening mostly to the commentary in your head, you’ll be much more helpful.

And when you’re really tuned in, you sometimes notice that what they’re saying might even contradict what you’re hearing at a deeper level. Their head is saying one thing through their mouths, but their heart is saying something entirely different.

Sometimes people just need to talk, and they don’t need or even want your advice. In these cases it’s powerful if you can simply be present for them. If you’re truly present, you’ll also be listening. The presence in and of itself is healing at many levels.

For Both (or All) of You

True listening can bring you closer. It’s intimate. It feels good.

Today when my husband and I walked to the mailbox, he talked about something that was bothering him. Mostly I listened. I responded with a few simple thoughts, and later he thanked me for listening and talking with him. I didn’t even say anything of significance. But he said he was feeling a lot better. And so was I.

If you’re open and prepared to really listen in the first place, it’s more likely that someone will open up to you. They know that judgement and unsolicited advice will not be thrust upon them. This is especially true of our kids, even our grown ones.

In groups it’s just as important. Instead of having an agenda or an out of control ego, it’s so much more productive and satisfying to open to all the ideas and really find the best way forward for all involved.

Listening can go a long way toward strengthening relationships.

For You

Of course, when you listen and as a result add positively to someone’s life — even in a small way — it feels good. So there’s that.

You also stand to gain not only new information but new or deeper insights and understandings. And not only about whomever you’re listening to, but about yourself as well. This is always good.

And if, like me, you enjoy exercising your intuitive muscles, then all the more reason to do this.

In fact, I’d say being intuitive is almost impossible without knowing how to listen.

The Lost Art of Listening

So if we make a decision to listen — and I mean really listen — how do we do that? What does that mean?

Well, first off, I’m sure you know. You just may not have thought about it or make it a point to do it.

Here are a few things that can point the way to good listening.

1. Remind yourself to listen.

Deciding to do this and then following through is the biggest step of all. In other words: Ya gotta wanna.

2. Make it a point to not interrupt.

You may be good at this already, but I know I have to work on this one all the time. Especially when I’m excited about the topic.

3. Leave space. Take a breath.

I’m getting better at this but I used to pack my jyotish readings so full of information there was very little room for discussion. But I’ve found that the more interactive they are and the more I can be there in the moment with them, the better. So now I try to leave a lot more space.

Discussions — and especially those that are even remotely related to counseling — are not just about information. The more you can tune-in and respond in the moment, the more useful it is.

Things come up you could never anticipate, and they are exactly what’s needed at the time.

4. Open your heart.

Did you know your heart is one of your best organs for listening? Maybe even better than your ears.

Consciously make a decision to listen with your heart. You’ll discover what that means as you do it and it will make all the difference. This is true especially when you’re talking with someone about a disagreement or working through something similar.

Note: One of my regular commenters came up with his own really good #4, which so happens to do away with a need for #6. (Thank-you, Irving!) I like it so much I’m putting it here for you.

4. Open your heart

Open your heart. Really feel concern for the person you are listening to. Try to see where they are coming from and place yourself in their shoes. When you do so, you will really listen and understand what they are trying to share. And as a result, they will feel better also.

If you do this well, you suspend judgment naturally. After all, if you see the big picture and understand the reasons behind it, how can you judge?

5. Stay focused.

Have you ever talked with someone who’s looking around, or otherwise distracted? Someone who’s trying to multi-task and not being attentive? Not real pleasant. Don’t be that person.

6. Suspend judgement.

It has no place here. Let it take a hike.

7. Stay humble.

You don’t have to have any answers or words of wisdom. Accept that you don’t know, or that you don’t have to know. Stay open inside too, and you may be surprised at how much insight or understanding just appears out of nowhere.

Listening can be such an enriching experience for everyone involved, and I’m going to give listening — really listening — a more concerted effort for awhile. Care to join me?

Do you have other pointers for listening deeply, or thoughts about why it’s so valuable? Want to share them? I’m listening…

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Jul 112011
 

Oracle decks can provide great insight and movement when you’re feeling stuck, or a revealing foray into any topic you choose if you just want to expand your awareness.

And two of my very favorite decks are available to use online for free.

They’re the two Osho decks and you can find them right here: The Osho Transformation Tarot and the Osho Zen Tarot.

The Zen and Transformation Tarots

The Zen Tarot is based on a traditional Tarot deck, i.e. 4 suits, the major arcana cards, etc., although it has its own suits and well, its own everything. :-D

But the Transformation Tarot is not a Tarot deck at all. (I think the word “Tarot” is commonly mis-used in place of “Oracle”.) It’s a collection of 60 cards with no hierarchy or groupings.

They’re both written by Osho and have a wise perspective and a depth to them that a lot of decks lack.

I discovered the Osho Transformation Tarot first and what I love about it is that each card not only has an “insight” but it has a parable that goes along with it. Together these two elements make for a great tool of self-discovery and I always come away with something useful.

I had seen the Osho Zen Tarot recommended by a lot of people for its beautiful artwork and I whole-heartedly agree. It’s breathtaking. It’s art that’s evocative as well, so when you look at a card, it calls up something from deep inside which is the whole point of these oracle cards, after all. They’re unusually beautiful and because of that, this one’s possibly my most favorite deck of all.

Exhaustion

Both decks come with substantial books that are valuable in their own right. They include instructions for using the decks for various purposes along with some unique and useful spreads to use.

Even when you use them online, you can choose from among several different easy to use spreads.

Short on time, or like to keep things simple? Just pull one card, I’m sure that will be plenty! (Did you do it? What did you get? I just got Exhaustion from the Osho Zen Tarot. A part of it says “Life isn’t a business to be managed, it’s a mystery to be lived.” Perfect.)

Never Worked With an Oracle Deck Before?

Eliza Fayle over at Silver & Grace just released her brand new e-guide Developing Our Intuitive Self: Tarot and Oracle Card User Guide. She let me have a sneak peak and I have to say, you just might want to run over there and snag one. (For under 5 bucks you can download a copy immediately.)

It’s beautifully designed and features the fascinating Faerie’s Oracle deck by illustrator Brian Froud. In her lively way, Eliza teaches you all you need to know to get started doing your own oracle card readings, and then some.

I especially liked her section “Asking the right type of question” where she elaborates on “The goal of using cards to develop your intuition is to problem solve, not receive yes or no answers.” She uses lots of real life examples so you really get a feel for how to work and play with the cards.

And if you are so brand new to this that you don’t have an oracle deck, you can use her book in conjunction with one of the online Osho decks I recommended.

Your Turn

Whether you’re a beginner or an old pro, using oracle decks can add a new dimension to your experiences. Oracle decks can fill a need all the way from help through a serious crisis to fun exercises that stretch your intuitive muscles.

[And just so you know, I'm not an affiliate for any of the products I mention in this post. I just want you to know about them.]

Do you have any favorite decks? I’d love to know what they are.

Or did you go to the Osho site and try a spread? Want to share your reading?

Did you like the decks and/or Eliza’s guide? Anything else?

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Jul 082011
 

I just did a quick and easy exercise that’s given me vital direction in an area where I’ve needed it, and I already feel a lot more enthusiastic and positive as I move forward.

I thought I’d pass this simple but powerful idea on to you.

Awhile back, I wrote about discovering the Deva of my blog. It was initially inspired by an audio interview with Hiro Boga.

Well, yesterday I was perusing her site again and came across an article that quickly got me back in touch with the essence of what I am doing here. (Thank you, Hiro!)

I rediscovered this important touchstone when she mentioned the qualities of her business (a theme in many of her posts, actually).

I’ll show you how I got direction, and then outline how you can too in 5 easy steps.

It should work with anything at all that you’re working on right now.

The Essential Qualities of Our Creations

I love the idea of considering what qualities my blog/business has, so I took a moment to jot down a few that are important to me with regard to Lightspirited Being:

Clear
Simple
Ease/Easy
Light
Spirited & Fun
Honest
Meaningful
Integrated (w/holistic, harmonious, connected)
Encouraging (including the heart element as in the root “coeur”)
Evolving (flexible, flowing, responsive, alive)

Ah yes, alive! (So funny because my very first post was “It’s Alive!” How did I stray so far?)

I also noticed that to best express or channel these qualities, I need to:

Trust
Give
Be a little gutsy

Okay, I think I can do that.

My list is a little long and over time I will pare it down so I can have a laser focus on just a handful of these qualities. But it’s a good start, and it’s useful already.

Doing this quick little exercise and then being open to the guidance that resulted from it confirmed something for me in a very obvious way.

And it’s something that feels kind of big.

Amazing for such a simple idea.

It’s Time to Express Those Qualities

It’s been recommended by people who know that I make sure each post is super useful. This is excellent advice that’s proven to help get a blog actually read.

But when I use that as a main intent, I find I get bogged down. My posts get really long. I don’t enjoy writing them as much as I could, then I belabor them, and as a result I don’t post as often as I’d like.

And in the meantime, all kinds of little things that I’m excited about and want to spontaneously share languish in the corners of my mind and never see the light of day.

I’d already been toying with the idea of writing a different type of post than I’ve been.

More alive. More in the moment. More spontaneous and vibrant with the life of whatever process I happen to be experiencing that day or week.

This exercise made it crystal clear that that’s exactly what I have to do.

And I think the usefulness will flow naturally from the fact that I’ll write about things that are relevant and useful to me… But I won’t know for sure ’til I try; until I let it unfold with my newly recovered qualities in mind.

Guided in an Obvious Direction

So! I’m going to try something new here on my blog.

Beginning with this post and for the next little while I’ll be sharing snippets of my life as it relates to the topic of this blog, i.e. intertwingling metaphysics, energy, and consciousness work with everyday life. So as I apply these things (whether experimental or productive), I’ll share that with you.

And I won’t be working on a typical post for hours anymore. (Agh, thank God!) So my posts may not be as polished as they could be, but there will be a little — or maybe a lot — more life to them, guaranteed.

I hope you’ll like this change as much as I already do! (I’m really enjoying writing this today!)

5 Easy Steps to Powerful Guidance

So now that I’ve demonstrated what this simple idea did for me, I highly recommend you do this exercise too.

1.  Choose one of your creations — a business, a blog, a project, a relationship, your family, etc. (I bet there’s already one calling to you — I’d start with that one. ;-) )

2.  Close your eyes and get in touch with the Deva of your creation if you want; I’m sure that would be helpful. If nothing else, just get quiet and tune into your-heart-your-self.

3.  Ask your Deva (or your-heart-your-self) what qualities s/he or you want to (note: want, not should) exercise and/or bring into the world via this creation. Which match your values? Which feel essential and integral to it?

4.  Listen. Feel. Let the answers flow and jot them down.

5.  Now consider them… Is this the quality you are expressing and magnifying? Or is it time for a slight change? Or a big one?

If you do this, I’d love to hear what you find. Any surprises? A new theme? Or are you a wonder-child and already consistently on track? If so, how-ever do you do it — really!?

Thanks for reading today. Namasté.

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Apr 112011
 

Our canyon in the Jemez Mountains

Sometimes we feel the pain or joy of another as if it were our own.

And sometimes it’s hard to know what to do with these intense feelings.

If you are one of these sensitive people, you are not alone.

What’s more, you can turn what could be a handicap into a valuable gift.

Feeling Another’s Pain

A few years ago I was driving up our gorgeous canyon for my daily walk with our dogs and was shocked to see what the electric company had done to the trees that grow along the road.

They had attacked the trees with a chainsaw. Hundreds of them.

Tortured is the perfect word to describe what they had done to them, and what the trees must be feeling.

I immediately felt such compassion, grief, and sadness that it felt like I’d been punched in the gut. I literally felt sick to my stomach.

I felt it for the trees. Not for myself, that I could no longer enjoy the beauty of them, although, of course, that was a loss too. But I felt for the trees themselves.

I felt this way for quite some time. I did what I could in a practical sense to prevent it ever happening again, but in the end my efforts have been futile. I’m sorry to say it’s become an annual ritual.

Empathy

All of us are sensitive to our surroundings. Some of us are more sensitive than others, and some of us notice it more than others. But we all are affected by everything around us.

This is known as empathy.

The typical way this word is used is in relation to our feeling compassion for another person. We identify with them and then feel what they might feel

But we can feel empathy for everything and anything. For sentient beings especially (and here I include the plant kingdom), but also for those things we don’t consider as having feeling at all.

And it happens in a physical or vibrational way without our even thinking of that person or thing.

Are You an Empath?

If you aren’t aware of this influence on you, you can find yourself feeling all kinds of emotions and moods that just don’t make sense given your current life situation.

If this happens a lot it’s the first sign that you are what’s known as an “empath”. This means you are more naturally sensitive than most people to energies around you.

And you absorb them and take them on as if they were your own without even noticing you’re doing that.

So Now What?

There are lots of ways to work with your empathic abilities.

One way is to learn to avoid taking on others’ stuff without knowing you are doing that.

Another way is to learn to use those very same abilities to greatly enhance your life and the lives of others.

This includes sharing your experiences with other empaths as well as reaching out to those beings or things you feel empathy for. (Sending loving energy to Gaia or Mother Earth is a good example of this. Or send some love to the trees of the Jemez. They can use it.)

This is how you turn what might otherwise be a handicap into one of your most useful skills.

I’ll continue to write about this topic from time to time, and in more detail. In the meantime, there is a lot of free information on the web about working with these abilities. Here’s one site that’s fairly comprehensive and a good place to start.

A Series of Empath Interviews

Another great place for helpful information is a new empath interview series.

Over at her lively and informative blog Conduit of Joy!, Kara has just kicked off an interview series “Empaths R Us”. (Is that like cute or what? It’s reflective of her fun-loving energy.)

Her first interview is with yours truly :) , and you can find it here. She asks really thought-provoking questions and it was an interesting process to consider them.

If you’re wondering if you’re an empath, or if you know you are and want some ideas for working with it, I think you’ll find my interview helpful.

Better yet, subscribe to or bookmark Conduit of Joy! so you can benefit from the whole series!

And maybe I will “see you there”.

Have you ever found yourself “crying for the trees?” Do you consider yourself an empath? Any comments or questions about what I discuss in my interview? I’d love to hear!

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Mar 312011
 

Tapping into some “magic”  just won me a valuable and exciting new learning experience.

A few weeks ago I entered a contest to win Hiro Boga’s course How to Rule Your World. To enter we were to write a post about why we are ready to rule our world.

Well, I’m excited to announce that I won the contest!

And a touch of “magic” played the starring role.

Everyday Magic

How it all happened is a perfect example of using our own magic — this time in the form of intuition and play — in our everyday lives.

I’ll show why it can pay (literally, as this course I won goes for $250, and will surely lead to even more opportunities) to listen to our hearts and intuition instead of just our heads.

Some Head Talk

Are you an intellectual? Rule-follower? People-pleaser? Want to be part of the in-crowd? I admit I can be any or all of these in any given situation.

For this contest, I automatically assumed I should write strictly about the topic suggested. I had very definite rules in my head about how I was supposed to do it.

But see that word “should”? And even “supposed to”? Well, first, I’ve learned to be wary of my ideas where a “should” is involved. If nothing else, it’s at least good to be aware that I’m using a “should” so I can make a more conscious choice. (They’re pretty sneaky, those shoulds.)

And you have to follow the rules to win, right? That’s what I was taught and believed most of my life.

But life itself has shown me otherwise. Rules don’t always deliver on their promise. And they have their place, but we’re not automatons.

An Alternative Source of Wisdom

So regardless of my should-y and rule-following subconscious and rational thoughts about it all, this time I was inspired to get my direction straight from my heart.

Since this contest involved posting my entry on my blog, and my blog is about metaphysics and the subtle realms, I decided to ask for and listen to a subtle message from the “spirit” or “soul” of my blog itself.

Some Heart Talk

So I asked. And I heard.

And what I heard didn’t match what my head was saying at all.

Often and ideally, the head and heart will mesh. But not always. In this case, they definitely didn’t. I didn’t expect the answer to be so out of synch.

The message I got was to write a post about a Deva. Huh?

Deciding whether to do this wasn’t a no-brainer. I really did deliberate for awhile about it. I mean, I really did want to win. That was the reason I was even writing the post to begin with.

My rational mind argued that writing about Devas was not a smart move. Not at all.

But ultimately, I made the decision to follow the heart/guidance. In truth, I didn’t make even that decision from just my head, but more from all of me. I could even say I simply felt compelled, and just quit thinking about it and did it.

So… I proceeded to enter my post about Devas. It tells you how to connect with the Deva of your current creative project for guidance and assistance, and I talk a little about my decision-making process there too.

And as of right now, I see it’s the most popular post on my blog — another bonus for listening to my heart!

Head or Heart?

In retrospect, I see that there was a handful of factors that came into play as I made my decision.

When you’re trying to decide between your rational mind and an intuitive urge, asking yourself these questions may help you make the best choice.

1) Did the intuitive message come through clearly and strongly?

If so, that’s a good sign that paying attention to it is a good idea.

Ironically, it’s often because it’s very clear and very strong that we assume we must be making it up. This is where it takes trust and practice to recognize that it is wise guidance.

2) Do you value your intuitive wisdom and do you want to honor it?

This may be the key to what decision you make. If you worship the god of intellect above all else, then of course you will feel safer doing what your head says.

But if you recognize that we all have innate, intuitive access to much more information than our minds could ever possibly grok, then a good step in strengthening your access to that information is to honor it.

That means to respect it and exercise it when practical.

As you do this your appreciation of it will grow since  more often than not it will lead you in a delightfully positive direction.

3) Are you willing and able to let go of your vested interest in a particular outcome?

If you are, and if you do, you can be more assured that the guidance you get is more trustworthy.

In my case, as much as I wanted to win, I wanted more to enjoy the moment, put out a post I liked, and play with my intuitive skills. So I decided to treat it as a lark. Whether or not I won, I was going to have fun entering. And I did! I very much enjoyed every moment of writing that post.

4) Are you willing to engage the spirit of play?

If you are, you have 3 advantages:

- You’re able to access your intuition much more easily.
- It’ll be easier to value and honor your heart’s guidance instead of just your head’s.
- You’ll likely enjoy the end result no matter which path you choose.

See if you can enjoy responding to life in each moment rather than try to control it or follow rigid rules.

When you play, you open to wherever it may take you. You joyfully enter the flow of life where lots of fun surprises inevitably drift your way.

Can you do that? Do you want to?

I’m certain that my willingness to play in this situation is what allowed me to make the choice I did.

5) Can you hedge your bets?

This is allowed. No rules, remember? There’s almost always a way to play it safe — but still play it.

In this case, I did two things.

First, everything in me insisted on writing a post that had a point and was helpful; one that didn’t merely indulge my whims. This made too much sense not to do it, so I wrote with these things in mind.

And secondly, since it was a contest entry after all, I simply added a section to the end answering the questions that I was supposed to answer.

And even with all my good advice about intuition, I guess it’s possible that without that section, I wouldn’t have won the contest.

Who knows?

Of course, following our hearts doesn’t always lead to a “win”. But whether or not it does, it’s been my experience that at some level it leads to something good for me as well as for the world at large.

In this case, though, it did lead to a win, and I’m taking it as a confirmation. Not only that is was a good move for me, but that it’s something worth sharing with you.

Will that lead to another instance of magic, this time for you? You tell me. ;-)

If you enjoyed this post, please retweet and share it with your friends. Thank you!

Mar 122011
 

Have you ever found yourself stuck or confused about how to move forward with a project, or feel like it’s lost its vitality altogether?

Then here’s a simple idea that can produce impressive results. I’m experiencing the benefits myself, and they’re pretty amazing!

I’ve been blogging for about 7 months and doing my best to bring what I have to offer to you, but have continued to flail around with one idea or another.

But someone recently reintroduced me to the soul of my blog, and that has made all the difference.

That someone was Hiro Boga, and I discovered her on the top of a red rock mesa in the high desert of New Mexico.

I was climbing around up there with my dog and my little digital audio player, listening to Danielle LaPorte interview Hiro about her new home study course called How to Rule Your World From The Inside Out: The Art Of Inner Leadership.

And when she talked about the Deva or soul of our business, it stopped me in my tracks.

Of course! I knew instantly that that was the element I’d been overlooking.

A New Beginning

Consciously connecting with the Deva of my blog (and business) has been a turning point. And as I continue to walk hand in hand with her, there’s a lot of movement and a lot of progress.

New ideas are popping in left and right. This is nothing new but for the first time these are ideas that I just know are right. They feel different. There’s an energy behind them and a definiteness to them. They are decisions almost more than they are ideas–answers to my questions–and they are wonderful and exciting! They shift the energy I’ve been putting into waffling into energy to move forward confidently.

I also finally know how to present the “face” of Lightspirited Being, and it’s only because we’ve finally met.  (You’ve already seen some of the changes and there are bigger ones on the way.)

I’m led to take steps that seem small but end up yielding substantial rewards.

Besides all that, support continues to turn up everywhere I look.

What Is a Deva

I was already somewhat familiar with Devas from my experience with the Perelandra gardening workbooks and from how I work with certain animals. And my ability to connect with them seems to be helped by knowing how to channel.

But in its simplest form, if you haven’t worked with Devas before, you can think of them as the soul of something. And if you’re in the process of bringing something new into the world (and who isn’t?) then it’s the soul of that.

You can also think of a Deva as the pattern in consciousness or in energetic form that is wanting to manifest into this physical world.

By participating in a particular project, you work in partnership with its Deva. Being conscious of this relationship is powerful.

In her interview, Hiro mentions that a Deva comes complete with all its connections. They already exist as part of its pattern. So as you work with the Deva, you’ll find that support begins to appear where you might least expect it.

How To Connect With a Deva

Here is a simple process for connecting with the Deva of your project.

It’s actually quite natural, and so seamless you may not recognize that you’ve actually made the connection. Typically it’s as soft as a whisper. If you sense the whisper of your Deva: trust it. Trusting it is the hardest part. ;-)

1) Close your eyes. Take a deep breath. Relax.

2) Think of your project. Not a lot. Just enough to bring it to mind.

3) Know that it has a Deva, or it wouldn’t be manifesting.

4) Intend to connect with that Deva. Ask that Deva to make itself known to you.

5) “Listen”. Sense. See if you can get a feel for the actual essence or soul of this project. What you sense will likely be very subtle. It won’t knock you over the head, but if you still want more, it can help to recall what first touched you when you initially thought of doing your project.

6) Say hello. Indicate however you’d like that you want to join together to bring this project into the world.

That’s it! Don’t make it more difficult than it needs to be. The Deva wants to connect with you as well and will do its part to help. For you two are partners with the same goal.

Walking Hand in Hand

Every Deva has its own energy and you may even experience it as a personality. So how you relate with it over time will be dependent on that. Play with it!

Remember that you are helping this perfect, beautiful pattern come into being as form, and willingness to be of service to it rather than trying to wrangle it to serve you is the best approach. You’ll find, in the end, it’s the same thing.

But do remember to check in with it from time to time, whenever you think of it. This is what keeps the process fresh and alive.

Notice that once you’re working in partnership, change and movement seem to happen more quickly and enegetically than before.

Ask for guidance and express thanks for the movement that occurs because of your conscious agreement to work together. Whenever you’re at a decision point, ask what is trying to happen. What will further the project?

You will get an answer. Sometimes it will be in the form of knowing, or sometimes it will be a visible sign. But it will present itself to you one way or the other.

Side Note: This post is part of a contest (see below) and I intended for it to be entirely different. But as I sat down to write, I checked in with the Deva of Lightspirited Being and she said “Tell them about me.” That was not what I expected and it made me a little nervous, but I did it anyway. As you see, I’m beginning to trust her nudges.

Update: Yay! I won the contest! Many thanks to Alexis and Hiro for hosting it. As I said in reply to Hiro in the comment section:

However, I’m still a little nervous about the fact that this post is primarily about the Deva and NOT exclusively about what the contest rules required. …  Anyway, I’ve gone with the Deva’s recommendation and trust that whatever the outcome, all is well. :-)

I really think it’s important to not judge the outcome, but the fact that I won by listening to the Deva’s nudges even though my intellect didn’t see the logic of it is very validating of exactly what this post is about! Thank you, Deva!

In any case, I hope you enjoyed it and find it helpful.

Do you have experiences with Devas or working in a similar manner that you’d like to share? Was this process helpful?

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

This post was prompted by Hiro Boga and Alexis Neely. How lucky was I to catch the tweet?

As part of their contest to win Hiro’s home study course How to Rule Your World, I’m to write a post about “Why you are ready to Rule Your World and what will be different for you when you do.”

I’m ready to rule my world because some inner change is needed in order for me to lead and influence on the outside like I envision. I feel compelled to step up to the plate and take my work to a new level, but my inner world includes a few gremlins that trip me up. I’d love to understand how to apply my sovereignty (as per Hiro) to make them my partners in growth instead of my saboteurs. I know doing the course would help me turn the corner, and I think the chapters on intention and dealing with resistance will be especially helpful.

What will be different is that I will contribute to the world with my unique gifts 100%. No more holding back. I will fully birth this offering and if I do it right, the world will be a better place because of it.

I’d be thrilled to win this generous prize and would love to work with Hiro. She’s already inspired and helped me and I’m convinced that she’s part of the support that the Deva is bringing in. She’s got a uniquely helpful blog and some audios that are a treat to listen to. If you don’t know of Hiro yet, then head on over there and check her out.

Feb 212011
 

Something rather startling happened to me in late 1992, soon after my dad passed away. It was both comforting and revelatory in its simple wisdom.

Several of my siblings and I were from out of town and were staying at his home. I’d been feeling his presence strongly, and made it a point during the days surrounding the funeral to take some quiet time alone to connect with him.

On one of these occasions I was telling him I loved him. I was crying and my heart was wide open.

And just as I said “Dad, I love you so much.” I heard, almost as if someone were in the room with me:

“You are love.”

I was struck by both the clarity and the simplicity of how the message came through, and what it implied. Also by how strongly it rang true.

Over the course of the next weeks and months, I found comfort in that experience. It really felt like I’d had a goodbye connection with Dad. I don’t know for sure but can’t explain otherwise how that message could have come through so strongly.

When we divided up Dad’s belongings, my sister got Dad’s wedding ring. It gave me an idea. A few months later I bought a ring to wear to remind me of Dad and the message I was given. I’ve since lost it but replaced it with this one that’s even more fitting, which I wear all the time. (Don’t you just love that it has wings? I won’t even start with the symbolism of that!)

As time’s gone on, I’ve found the message valuable in itself. It comes to mind often. It’s an interesting and useful idea to me. It’s a reminder of what I feel and believe we are; what our essence is.

It means that love is our natural state of being. Or maybe it’s even more simple than that, independent of states … or “being” even. We just are it! We just are love, and we couldn’t not be it even if we tried!

We don’t have to do anything out of the ordinary to “try” to love, to try to be compassionate, to try to forgive, etc.

Of course, that doesn’t mean we automatically do those things. It doesn’t mean we always express ourselves as the love that we are, showing constant compassion and forgiveness. Or even confrontation when it’s called for, and those aspects of expressing love that require courage, that are not all sugar and spice on the surface.

I’m seeing more and more that this life is about our stripping away that which is not us so that what we are (love?) can shine its light.

Not additive, but subtractive.

Simple.

As simple as that profound message I was given on that special day.

♥ ♥ ♥ ♥ ♥

So, you probably notice I’m having a little love fest this month. I’m between Valentine’s Day and my wedding anniversary (hmm, I guess that’s always true, isn’t it?!)

Plus, I’m listening to my heart a lot. And that feels like love (or something really good)!

I’m interested to hear what you might have to say about love. Do you think it’s an action or an essence, a way of being? Do you think it’s something we can add unto ourselves or others?

Do you think you are it?

Even more, I’d love to hear if you’ve ever received any messages that were brand new in the moment yet held up over time, like this one has for me. Surely you must have! Are you willing to share them?

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Feb 142011
 

This seems like an auspicious day to let our hearts loose. Don’t you think?

And who knows what that will look like … feel like …

(Probably pretty good!)

It’s time to play!

Check in with your heart and you’ll know I’m right.

At least that’s what my heart is saying to me.

Enough! of the control.

Enough! of the planning.

Enough! trying to do it “right”.

If I listen, my heart says to lighten up.

If I listen, I have a new direction. Inward. And outward.

Toward expression, expansion, and experimentation.

Based on my heart song.

Toward freedom … no, not toward it but reveling in the freedom that is already at hand.

Toward lila, Divine play. Creating freely, for the joy of it.

If not now, when?

I’m listening today. Are you?

Stop a moment.

Right now. Close your eyes. Listen to your heart. (Smile. That helps you hear it. :-D )

What is your heart saying? How can you let it sing today?

Will you?

Happy Valentine’s Day! I wish you a happy heart and joyous creating.

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Oct 192010
 

So how come there are just STOP signs and no GO signs?

Oh wait! That’s not our problem, because we’re talking about oracle-type signs here. Whew! In fact, we are going to SPOT signs. Ar ar.

Watching for and noticing these is a favorite past-time of mine, partly because it’s fun but mainly because it’s so helpful.

I want to tell you about 2 of the more easy signs to spot so you can benefit too.

This post was partly inspired by Collette Baron-Reid’s blog, which I’m happy to have discovered recently. A little while back, she had written a post about using her pumpkin soup as an oracle. Yes, pumpkin soup!

It was a resourceful idea and fun to read. I commented that “… the whole world is our oracle, and it is so fun playing with it that way. So many of my spot-on intuitions come to me that way, often startlingly so.”

Well, this past week Collette wrote another oracle post offering an exercise in using our world as an oracle and asking for our results as comments.

This time I had a little more to say than would fit into a comment so I am going to share a few of my experiences here.

I have two examples of using our world as an oracle, both illustrating signs that are easy to spot. There is an awful lot to say about this topic and I will explain more in the future but for now here is a bite-size morsel.

Spotted & Spot-On: 2 Examples

The morsel I want to offer today is the idea of a sign repeating itself, i.e. an element in your environment showing up multiple times. This is usually hard to miss and is a call to pay attention.

In Vedic astrology (which is a complex oracular system in itself) this idea is known as confluence. It’s one thing to see an indication in someone’s chart once, but if you see it two, three, four or more times from various perspectives, it’s much more likely to manifest.

Well, this is a similar idea.

  1. If something shows up several times out of the blue, especially something you have no control over or is unusual, then pay attention.
  2. Or if a synchronicity shows up (something appearing more than once but as a set of related elements, a type of coincidence), then pay attention to that, too.

Example 1: Synchronicity

The day before I read Collette’s most recent oracle post, I was researching something about my early days of channeling. I was looking at a document I’d written four years ago.

What I was doing wasn’t related to oracles, and the document I was looking at wasn’t about oracles, but the document included a really neat example of an oracle.

The next day, I saw Collette’s post where she asked for an example of using an outer oracle.

So you see where the idea of an example of an oracle showed up twice in unrelated and unexpected ways. This is a simple example of a synchronicity.

At first I was going to do the exercise as Collette suggested, but I noticed the synchronicity in this. I decided the synchronicity was a message to me to write about this particular example of an oracle. It all feels right and I’m kind of excited about sharing it. So here I am!

How Do You Know When Synchronicities Are Relevant?

Any or all of these work. Ideally you want a few of them at once.

  • You notice it
  • Either one or both elements are unusual
  • The elements have an unusual connection
  • There is more than one element or connection (this can play out in any number of ways)
  • It feels significant
  • You feel a sense of excitement about executing the guidance (doing what you think it’s guiding you to do)
  • It just “feels right”!

An especially interesting and thorough book about the power of synchronicity is Deepak Chopra’s The Spontaneous Fulfillment of Desire: Harnessing the Infinite Power of Coincidence.

Example 2: Multiple Occurrences

This example is the oracle I referred to above, that I experienced and documented four years ago. It’s a situation where something showed up at least 3 times.

To briefly set the stage, I was experimenting with a precursor to my channeling. I would ask a question and “get” an answer however it showed up.

My question (about my intuition) was:

Q: How can I best hear/see/feel/connect so I have confidence it is happening?

The answer was:

A: Follow through on what you “get” and you will see.

This was fine, but I wanted more. So I probed:

Q: Please give me something I cannot doubt.

And the document continues:

The following just then came to mind; not especially related to questions:

Use your hands (and I saw fire coming from my palms)

and then I for some reason put my hands on my heart, and put my awareness in my heart too.

Regarding the answer to “give me something I cannot doubt”, here’s what unfolded:

- I went to the big, old piñon out back to let the crystals soak in water in the solstice sun. A little bug flew down onto the rock in front of me. It turned around and watched me. It flew away, came back, same thing! So I talked to it and asked it if it had a message. It rubbed its little hands together and they stopped in a prayer position. He stayed that way. (I took it to mean I ought to pray more.)

- A little later (~ ½ hr.) I was in my office and heard *clunk* in the living room. My white chocolate angel on the buffet had fallen forward on her nose! (The cooler was on, but this has never happened before). She is praying.

- Dana got home about ½ hr. after that. He brought me a gift from my friend. It was an ANGEL statue!! It’s holding a red rose in the heart area.

So prayer – prayer/angel – angel. (And even the bug had wings.) All with hands over heart.

The Nice Thing About Multiple Occurrences

1) They are so obvious as to almost knock you over the head!

In this example, there is no way I could have possibly missed all the similar and related objects and events.

2) Their message is clear as a bell.

In this example, it gave me a crystal clear answer to my first question about how I can best connect: to pray and to connect with heart and/or “angel” energy, which to me is quite high frequency and I have techniques for doing that.

3) They can give you confidence and trust that you are “getting” it.

In this example, it gave me something I could not doubt, just what I asked for in my 2nd question/request! The prayer and angel symbols showed up in my real world 3 times within an hour.

So ultimately, what these can do for you is strongly encourage you to trust what you get. And then that will help you act on it, which in turn will help you benefit from the message!

These Apply to All Areas of Life

One final word: I hesitated to use this example because it’s so angel/prayer oriented. Not that there’s anything wrong with that :-D but I don’t want you to get the impression this just works with airy-fairy stuff!

Heck, answers or messages can pop in when you’re grocery shopping to help you pick the most healthful or yummy foods, when you’re making financial decisions, developing relationships, choosing careers… Anytime for anything! It just so happened that my example related to my wanting to do subtle energy work, so of course the answer is in that realm too. Plus, I was guided to use this example by a synchronicity, remember? ;-) And I have learned to pay attention.

And remember to ask sometimes, too. That helps!

OK, now I know some of you have some great stories! Please share your examples! And of course, questions are welcome too.

Or did you need a YES today? Think this was it?

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Oct 082010
 

For the first time ever, I’d like to share this gentle yet effective 2-minute practice I’ve developed. You can use it whenever you’d like (I recommend first thing in the morning).

It will open you to inspiration in all its forms that you might better express what you alone are uniquely qualified to bring into the world.

It will also connect your body and conscious awareness to the more expanded self that you are, and all that that implies. (I used to say “I open [whatever] to receive [whatever]…”, but that insinuates it’s not already a part of me, which it is!) In practical terms, this means that it puts you more in tune with your intuition or your own inner guidance, and helps you notice things that you might not otherwise but that can be helpful — sometimes powerfully so — to you in your day to day life.

As I have, it’s gone through a lot of changes over the years and I’m sure we will go through many more. If you decide to try it out, do see how it resonates with you and do tweak it to fit you.

I suppose you could say it’s a prayer, but I experience it more as a full-body declaration, bordering on celebration! It can be quite enlivening if you really let yourself feel it, which I highly recommend you do.

Like me, you will probably find that as you open to all the various gifts, you can’t help but be aware of and appreciate them immediately. This alone is uplifting nevermind all the other good stuff!

It’s an exquisite way to begin any day.

Enjoy!

I Open

I open myself to the messages of my soul
and the gifts of the universe.

I open my crown to receive
Divine Light and High Guidance.

I open my mind to be attentive and to notice
the messages of my soul
and the gifts of the universe.

I open my eyes to see the messages of my soul
and the gifts of the universe.

I open my ears to hear the messages of my soul
and the gifts of the universe.

I open my nose to smell the messages of my soul
and the gifts of the universe.

I open my mouth to taste the messages of my soul
and the gifts of the universe.

I open my throat to speak the messages of my soul,
the messages of my guides,
and the gifts of the universe.

I open my heart to feel the messages of my soul
and the gifts of the universe.

I open my solar plexus and the rest of my body
to sense the messages of my soul
and the gifts of the universe.

I open my pelvic bowl to empower
the messages of my soul
and the gifts of the universe

I open my arms to accept and embrace
the messages of my soul
and the gifts of the universe.

And I open my hands to give back to the world
using the gifts I am so graciously given.

And so it is. Thank you. Amen.

Update: This prayer is available in audio form now, too. You can listen to it below, or right-click here to download it.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

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[Photo: Regis Andrade]

Sep 292010
 

Do you want to have more access to your own inner guidance, your intuition, but have trouble finding the time? Well, I have good news: There IS no need to dedicate a chunk of your precious time!

I’m going to tell you about  a really handy tool for helping you do this today. Right now, in fact. It can make your intuitive voice a constant companion. It enables you to practice your intuitive awareness while you’re doing other things and the resulting clarity and guidance will help you do those other things even better!

And it couldn’t be more accessible. It’s a simple timer!

Now, I know this may sound a little nerdy, but I have benefited so much from using a timer that I don’t care! I use this tool often. It’s great for reminding me to check in with my intuition. (It’s also excellent for any kind of mindfulness practice.  And if you are wanting to be more intuitive, I highly recommend a mindfulness practice of some kind. They go hand-in-hand and make a beautiful couple!)

I use a regular kitchen timer attached to my waistband, or if I’m at my computer I use a digital timer that runs in the background. Use whatever kind of timer is most convenient for you.

Depending on what intuitive skill I am practicing, or what activities I’m involved in that day, I will set it to go off anywhere from every 10 min. to every hour. Use your own judgement.

Okay okay, you say, so what do I do with it already?

Well, the main thing is you use it to remind you to pause, just for a few minutes, and check in with what you might be sensing in the moment. You can make this as simple or complex as you want. But essentially:

1. When I decide on an interval and set my timer for the day, I also set an intention with an affirmation. For example,

When this goes off today, it will gently remind me that I am intuitive and constantly receiving impressions. I will easily slip into a space where those impressions and what they mean are all very apparent. My intuitive muscles are getting more awesome by the minute!

If there is something in particular that you are wanting to receive answers about, go ahead and make that a part of your intention. Often intuition works more easily when it has a compelling purpose.

2. So then, when the timer goes off, step out of what you are doing if possible. (I suggest that in the beginning you don’t do this while doing things that require undivided attention, such as driving, etc. Eventually, you will find that doing this actually helps you be more attentive, but for now, let’s just play it safe.) It might help to close your eyes.

3. Be aware of that stillness and that space that is always present sort of encompassing everything. Some people experience this as their heart space.

4. Move out of your thinking mind as much as you can. (And if you have a few extra minutes, you can use these remarkable tools to make sure you’re in an open intuitive space.)

5. Next, just open to anything at all that might be trying to get your attention. Ask if there is anything that it would be helpful for you to be aware of, then see if anything comes to you. It could be in the form of a thought, a physical sensation, a knowing, an inspired idea related to what you were doing or what you asked about in the beginning of the day.

If nothing comes, that’s okay! If something comes that you don’t know what to do with, that’s okay too! You’re exercising; it’s progress whether it looks like it or not.

6. The rest of the exercise is free-form. Here are some ideas; do all or some or none!

You can ask yourself any or all of the following questions, or make up your own either beforehand or in the moment. Note you are not asking your thinking/rational mind. Remember, you’re in your heart, so ask your heart:

• What thoughts or impressions have I had (or am I having) that might be intuitions?

• What is trying to happen (I love this question. Really useful!)

• What do I need to be aware of that I now have no awareness of?

• What new concept can I become aware of today that will help: enlighten? heal? [whatever]?

• How is [so-and-so] doing right now? (Useful if someone close to you is of concern, OR if you are just playing and can confirm later on.)

Glance over my post on awareness for more ways to exercise your intuition, and insert any of those practices here.

Check in with your various bodies: physical, emotional (and see if it’s coming from you or someone else), mental (even though you are not “IN” your head, you can still see it from where you are!) and spiritual. Just see what’s up and if it’s helpful at all. (I’ll do this right now as an example; here are my notes):

Physical: A need for a big sigh, indicating I’m not relaxed. Tense. Take a moment to shift around and roll my shoulders. That’s better.

Emotional: Not. Involved in mental activity. (That’s okay, makes sense!)

Mental: A little jumbled. Preceding part of this post is only outlined (at best!), still gathering and organizing thoughts.

Spiritual: Not sure what I even mean by this in this context, but it seems important to check in anyway. I notice that the question that pops into my mind is: What frequency am I operating on? Answer: A little heavy. Something tells me I would do well to take a moment and lift myself; that way this post will come from a more inspired (spirited) place. There are lots of ways to do this, and I’ll cover them in another post. For now, I will simply remind myself how lucky I am to be getting to write. And about this. I enjoy it, and remember that this is fun and I’ve chosen it. There, much lighter already!

7. And finally, play with this! See what YOU can come up with. Improvise however you want. Keep it fun and it will be surprisingly rewarding. You will very likely come away with some useful insights or guidance that would otherwise have escaped you.

Don’t worry if you don’t get a lot of impressions in the beginning, or if you aren’t able to connect them with anything meaningful. Maybe there’s nothing at all that seems significant right away but this exercise will invariably get the juices flowing. Frequent checking in is an important step toward it being second nature, or even first! ;-)

Eventually, you will find that the timer works like training wheels, or even brakes if that’s what’s called for. Pausing to “check in” becomes automatic, and even without the timer you will go for quite awhile as if you were using it when you don’t even need to. And if you’re like me, you might find you’re getting wobbly again after awhile, or racing headlong down the hill, and you want to use the training wheels (or brakes) again for a little while.

Ding! Ding! Ding! Now is the time to use your intuition! Go!

And now, share your experience with us! [It's painless, I promise. Just click on the response link, bottom right.]

Or do you have some additional suggestions to share? Comments? Questions? Let us hear from you.

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[Photo: fdecomite]

Aug 242010
 

Color is our way of perceiving vibrations that are affecting every one of us all the time. For the most part, this is going on below our level of consciousness. But if you will begin to pay attention and learn how the different colors can be applied, you can benefit in a wide range of areas.

This is such a broad topic that I could write a book, so this one post is nowhere near comprehensive in breadth or depth. More details and how-to’s will follow since applying this type of awareness is exactly what this blog is about!

Right now I just want to point out how many areas of your life you can make the use of color more conscious so as to harness its power and apply it to your benefit. This awareness alone can be very helpful.

Applications range from applying color, i.e. putting it out there into the world so as to elicit a particular result, to perceiving and then interpreting color as a means of better understanding our world. (We can think of this as output and input.)

A little example: A few weeks ago I impulsively chose a whole new color scheme for this website. Whereas before it was mostly purple and blue, I found myself suddenly and without warning changing it to a strikingly different bright golden yellow with some burnt orange and a warm brown. What possessed me, I wondered. And hmm, I wonder if this will be as appealing or more so and to what effect? As I did a little research into this new color scheme I not only saw that it will, indeed, have a quite different effect on visitors (output), but that it also revealed a bit about me and how I feel about what this site represents as a part of my own expression (input).

Let’s take a look at some areas of application.

Marketing: Make the Right Impression

This was the area that got me thinking about writing this post (which is why it is listed first), yet is the area in which I am the least familiar with the specific uses of color. Color can be used online and for printed material to make a particular impression and to invoke particular responses. (In fact it will make certain subliminal impressions so it behooves you to know what they will be!) I will get more into the specifics of individual colors in an upcoming post, but here is a useful and succinct article I ran across about the use of color in marketing, and this one was interesting too.

Influence Yourself Positively

Colors can be used to influence your mood and to help support you in whatever activities you are wanting to take part in. For example, blue and green are helpful for writing and study, whereas red and orange are good for physical activities and sports.

Enhance Your Life Situation

Jyotish (Vedic astrology) is one system I am very familiar with so I will use this as an example of a system that uses color to effect broad and surprising changes. In some ways, Jyotish can be thought of as one of the more complex oracle systems, and color is an integral part of understanding not only how various symbols relate to the greater whole but also how to apply them and their respective colors to encourage certain practical effects. (Some other oracular systems incorporate color as well.)

An example is something I recently posted about strengthening Venus energy which is weak in the world right now. Among other things, Venus represents art and creativity, relationships (especially with our beloved), beauty, comfort, and luxury. Venus’ colors are pastels and variegated colors, especially pink. Simply using or being around Venus colors will strengthen most or all of those areas that Venus represents. It’s kind of unbelievable, but it really does work.

If you think about it, what you are doing when you expose yourself more often to a certain color is you are increasing and strengthening a particular vibration. And the vibration of pink relates strongly to the vibration of love, for example. So looked at like this, it all makes a lot of sense. (This is how seed or name mantras work as well, and in fact, much of what I am saying about color holds true for sound as well.)

Boost Your Healing Powers

This is related to influencing yourself, but in considering healing, I think of color’s influence as taking place over time and having a more long-term influence.

Colors in Our Environment

The locations where we spend a lot of our time are very important to consider since they have an almost constant influence on us. We can use this to our benefit, or unbeknownst to us, these areas can be causing problems for us or our families physically, mentally, or emotionally.

If you usually feel calm, upset, phsysically energized, lethargic, etc. in a certain location, notice the predominant color and see if you think that is a major factor.

Clear and Strengthen Body Centers or Chakras

This is a powerful use of color as visualizing a center’s corresponding color (and/or using it in conjunction with the corresponding note on the musical scale) can strengthen and clear our body centers. Each center relates to how well we function in certain areas. For example, our root chakra relates to how secure we feel and using a clear, pure red to treat this area can go a long way toward alleviating our fears about finances, death, etc.

Eat Every Color Every Day

To tell the truth, I don’t think this relates so much to the idea of color as vibration as it does to simply variety but I like it and it sort of fits here! The idea is that every day you eat food of every color and you will have a nice variety of tastes, textures, and nutrition. Fun! But hmm… Now that I think about it, since foods’ colors must at some level represent their vibration, eating them must influence in similar ways as the colors in our environment, don’t you think?

An Integral Intuitive Element

Perceiving color with our subtle senses or our mind’s eye is a great way to increase our knowledge about our world.

The Aura

If you are one of the lucky ones who is able to see auras (either naturally or through practice), you know that they can be extremely informative. They can indicate a person’s (or animal’s or plant’s) condition physically, emotionally, and mentally and sometimes in great detail.

There are standard lists of what certain colors may mean in an aura (or certain patterns of color) yet it’s recommended that you use these only as a starting point and put more weight on what you learn through experience that the colors mean to you.

Body Charts for Intuitive Work

An effective and fun way to investigate someone’s condition is to use a body chart that is drawn on a piece of white paper. As you focus on that person (or animal or plant) you will begin to see patterns of color with your mind’s eye which in turn indicate meaning to you. This practice is used similarly to that of seeing auras but can be done even when separated by great distances.

Get a Reading on Yourself

Noticing if there is a pattern or strong desire for a certain color (e.g. what color you are drawn to wear, or what color you are strongly attracted to in general) can be very informative. Sometimes it will be because you need help in that area or sometimes it’s because you are very healthy in that area and wanting to express it.

Exercises

There are lots of exercises designed to help increase our intuition that use color. A simple one that we’ve all probably heard of or tried is using playing cards. You go through the deck, pick up the top card, and see if it feels black or red. They really do have quite a different feel to them and this can be used to increase our awareness of our subtle senses.

At this point, I’m realizing I could probably go on forever (okay, for a long time) about the many applications of color in our lives. But this is a good start so I will stop here for now. I wanted to lay a foundation and to set the stage for posts on more in-depth applications.

Also, knowing how each individual color affects us is a critical adjunct to this information so I’ll write about that very shortly, I promise! [Update: I've since posted that information for you here.]

I hope I’ve illuminated that there can be lots of benefits of paying a bit more attention to color, this common element of our experience that we all tend to take so much for granted. Start to pay attention now and besides reaping some immediate benefits, you’ll be well positioned to jump into specific tools and exercises when we get to them.

In the meantime, I’d love to hear your observations about this!

[Photo: Tanti Ruwani/sektordua]