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Posts Tagged ‘connection to divine’

Greetings, my friends!

psychic.photoIntroduction to Evidential Mediumship will be offered again, beginning Saturday January 20, meeting weekly and running for 8 weeks. If you’re in Los Angeles, this is your chance to begin the process of unfolding and developing your innate psychic and mediumistic abilities.  

In this class, you’ll learn to work with subtle body and Spirit energies for improved intuition and sensing. You’ll develop your ability to interpret metaphysical phenomenon and begin decoding communication from the world of Spirit via your 6 senses. You’ll experience excitement and a deep sense of purpose as you learn to make contact with Spirit entities in the Light, bringing comfort and healing for others through the application of evidential mediumship.

Dates & Times

  • Session 1 –  8 Saturdays from 1/20 – 3/10, 2018  10:30am-12:15pm
  • Session 2 – (if demand requires) 1/20 – 3/10, 2018  1:30pm – 3:15pm

Where: Just blocks from the Hollywood Bowl or Hollywood/Highland Red Line Metro stop. Specifics will be sent to registered students.

Learn more>>

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Happy New Year, my friends! To start the year, I have a very special story to share with you – one of deep love, inspiration, and enlightenment that I’m certain you’ll enjoy.

Sally’s Story

Sally

My dear friend, Sally.

In early November, my college friend Sally kept popping into my head. We hadn’t checked in with each other for a while, so I wrote a quick “How are you?” email. To my surprise,  Sally responded with an extraordinary story of Spirit communication! And the wonderful news is that she has generously agreed to let me share it with you.

Sally has had one of those years. You know what I mean: when the Universe throws everything at you all at once. Sink or swim in the deep end of life. But just as the Universe takes away, it inevitably gives back in unexpected ways, often accompanied by the realization that all is as it’s meant to be.

Here is Sally’s incredible story that lies at the intersection of love and faith.

The Pact

Last winter, Sally moved in with her elderly mother, Donna. At 81, Donna was becoming increasingly frail and needed some loving assistance. The blessing in this arrangement was that for the first time in decades, Sally

SONY DSC

Sally’s mother, Donna

and her mother were able to spend leisurely evenings and weekends together, exploring all manner of topics in a way they had never done before. One evening, the conversation moved to the topic of “what happens after we die.”

Mother and daughter decided to make a pact: whoever died first would try to communicate across the veil to the other. Sally and Donna didn’t go so far as to set up a code word or even a specific means of communication; they just decided they would try, because they believed it was possible.

Donna passes into Spirit

In March, Donna took a fall that put her in the hospital. It was a fall from which she would not recover, and Sally’s mother passed unexpectedly, yet peacefully into Spirit. Donna had  often said over recent years that she was happy to go on to the realm of Spirit, that she was ready. For Sally and her siblings however, it wasn’t so easy.  The experience of losing one’s mother can leave one feeling like a ship without anchor on wind-tossed seas, but one miraculous event in the midst of Sally’s grief gave her strength she didn’t know she had.

Breaking through the Veil

It was 10 days after Donna’s passing, and two weeks before a larger memorial service was to be held. Sally got into bed that night, leaving her laptop within reach. Normally, the laptop spent the night on the dresser, but this was no normal night.

In the wee hours of the morning, Sally was woken by her mother’s voice, “Wake up, Sally! Wake up! Sally, wake up!” The voice got louder and stock-footage-hands-typing-on-a-laptop-keyboardlouder until it pulled Sally out of a deep slumber. At the urging of her mother, Sally felt compelled to turn on her laptop.  She opened a blank document and just started typing and then her mother took over. The words flowed rapidly through Sally’s fingers and onto the page. The awaited contact!

Now, if this were to happen to me, a trained medium, you might think it wasn’t anything particularly out of the ordinary. But Sally is no “traditional” medium. In fact, despite being a good friend of mine for over 30 years, Sally wasn’t yet to the point of feeling comfortable sitting for a reading with me. I just waited for the day she might be. And never did I imagine, and certainly nor did she, that Sally would be her own medium!

Below is the dialogue that ensued between Sally and her mother, Donna (in Spirit) on Sally’s computer. Ellipses (…) represent comments personal to Sally that I removed.

April 2, 2015 – 3:18am 

Sally: OK, here’s some weird stuff. I feel like Mom is channeling through this computer to me. I feel like she is keeping me from falling asleep. She is trying to tell me…

Mom: I love you all so much. I know you did your best for me. I tried to do my best for every one of you, but I had to go. Take care of Tom (Sally’s brother). … You and I said that we would try to contact each other once I was dead, so this is what I’m trying to do. I am happy. My soul is happy, but I’m trying to do what I can for all of you. Just take care of Tom. You will know how to do it when you have a question, because I will speak to your soul. I love you all.

Sally: What else can I do mom? What should I do?

Mom: Know that I am watching you, all of you. Don’t fight. Keep everyone together. Know that I am here. I love all the grandkids, every one of them the same. Help them all, trust your instincts.

Sally: Mom, help me give you the best eulogy I can.

Mom: I will and you can do it well. You can be a writer if you really want to be. I am with you. I will help you.

Sally: What was it like to die?

Mom It was weird. I went on a journey through a tunnel. I am on The Other Side but I can try to communicate with you once in a while, if you are hearing me. And you are hearing me, Sally. Sally, you wanted me to try and communicate with you, so I am.

I am excited to go to the next step. It is so great not to hurt anymore. I hurt more than I told any of you I did. 

I am not your mother anymore. It is wonderful here. It is wonderful where I am going. I’m still not all there yet.

Sally: Can I go to sleep now? What else do you want to say?

Mom: Just that you should do your best by everyone. Don’t forget. Now go to sleep.

Did you just say, “Wow”? Because that’s what I said when I read it. It’s a fabulously clear communication filled with love — and it provides us a rare insight into what happens to a Loved One after so-called death.

There are many lines of communication from Donna that support, in surprisingly candid terms, much of my own work as a medium and Life-Between-Lives hypnotherapist, reaffirming the work of Dr. Michael Newton, as shared in my favorite metaphysical book, Destiny of Souls.

So, let’s break this conversation down a little bit, and see what Donna is really saying.

On Spirit Communications

“You and I said that we would try to contact each other once I was dead, so this is what I’m trying to do.”

“You will know how to do it when you have a question, because I will speak to your soul.”

“I am on The Other Side but I can try to communicate with you once in a while, if you are hearing me. And you are hearing me, Sally.”

Contrary to the premise of the once popular TV show, Ghost Whisperer, where Spirits finally cross over to The Other Side never to be heard from again, this message from Donna makes clear that our Loved Ones in Spirit are as near as we need them to be, for as long as we need them to be. In truth, our Loved Ones speak to us often in response to our needs or prayers. All we have to do is to find the quiet within and listen when they speak to our souls.

Did you notice the time? 3:18am. Spirit is most active between 2am and 4am,when the ambient noise and Earth energy is at a low, so it’s not surprising that Donna chose this time to communicate. Meditating in quiet and calm nature settings may also bring you the same ease of communication.

On Spirit Presence

Know that I am watching you, all of you…Know that I am here.”

When we call on our Loved Ones, when we grieve them or just think of them, they are immediately at our sides with love and support for all we do.  Have you ever experienced the sudden shift in emotion when you think of a Loved One? One moment you’re fine, and the next you’re crying, and you say to yourself, “Where did that come from?” It’s the energy of pure love that those in Spirit share with you when they are close – it opens and softens our hearts, and tears often follow.

Now, there is what mediums refer to as a “black-out” period, which extends somewhere between 2 weeks after one’s passing to as long as 6 months, when the Spirit is less communicative. Why? Because they are busy reintegrating their current life soul-energy into the whole of their soul, and moving through life review and reflection with their Spirit Guides and counselors. Don’t be dismayed; he or she will be back and around as soon as their own energy is whole and healed again. When they come back, however, they will be communicating with you from the a much higher perspective, and undoubtedly with greater knowledge of your soul’s goals in this lifetime. The personality may persist, but the level of spiritual awareness and light energy is significantly heightened.

On Spirit Support

“You can be a writer if you really want to be. I am with you. I will help you.”

All we need to do is ask for our Loved Ones to help us, and to be very specific with our requests. They happily volunteer their time and work in tandem with our band of Spirit Guides for our benefit. All those synchronicities that happen to you…give thanks and gratitude to your Loved Ones and Spirit Guides for lighting your way!

On the Process of Passing into Spirit

“It was weird. I went on a journey through a tunnel. I am on The Other Side… I am excited to go to the next step. It is so great not to hurt anymore.

Donna, as all souls, went through the tunnel of light to The Other Side. The next step she refers to is the reintegration of her current life energy and personality with her Oversoul or Higher Self, the greater part of her energy body that always resides in the realm of Spirit.

YoungFamily

Donna holds Sally in this 1962 family photo. Sister Sue and their father hold baby Tom.

 

She comments on the physical pain being gone, now that she’s out of the body, which served as the vehicle for her Spirit while on Earth. Donna chose the family she would be born into, her husband, her children – all prior to this life. They would provide her the opportunities she sought for spiritual growth.

On Soul Re-integration

“I am not your mother anymore. It is wonderful here. It is wonderful where I am going. I’m still not all there yet.”

I was especially excited to see this concept shared by Donna. It’s another reference to Donna reintegrating with her Oversoul – the larger and complete soul that recalls all lifetimes lived, including time lived on The Other Side. Since it had been several weeks since Donna passed, she was already mid-process and therefore cognizant of this fact as she speaks to Sally. Donna clarifies that she “is still not all there yet” meaning, the re-integration is not yet complete, but she shares with Sally that it’s a wonderful process and place to be.

Donna

Donna

Donna would be known on The Other Side by her soul name. That said, the love she feels for Sally and her other children in this lifetime does not reduce, but rather grows as she goes through her transition. Mostly likely, Donna and Sally lived many lifetimes together, and have loved each other through their various roles, relationships and experiences. We don’t choose our family members lightly prior to birth;  there’s history and deep abiding love developed for other souls through millenia. We enter into Sacred Contracts with these souls to play various roles in our Earthly lives, roles that help each member learn and grow spiritually. Donna is now again privy to all this hidden knowledge.

Donna’s State of Being

Just look at the various adjectives Donna uses to describe her current experience of transition: happy, excited, wonderful, great.

Joyful, indeed! 

Sally’s State of Being

I asked Sally if she remembered typing the document. She replied, “I remember opening a blank Word doc, then started typing. I only remember writing the first entry, then I was suddenly SO tired. I do recall typing, ‘Can I go to sleep now?’ Then I closed the computer and fell into a really deep sleep. Not until I opened my computer the next day, did I remember I’d had this experience. Usually I have my computer on the dresser, but that night I had it on the floor before I went to bed.”

Best guess? Donna had a hand in guiding Sally’s decisions before bed and keeping the computer nearby — all so that Sally would stay in a semi-conscious state while typing. The simple action of Sally getting out of bed to get her computer from the dresser could have brought her too close to full conscious awakening and thereby less effective as a Spirit channel.

“It was the only thing that kept me going.”

In the initial email from Sally, she spoke of the role her mother’s communication played in her own healing process:

I would read the message over and over. It was the only thing that kept me going. I don’t even know why it kept me going, but it did.

Sally keeps a copy of the channeled dialog with her mother on her phone and pulls it up whenever she needs a little  extra dose of the strength and inner peace it brings. Works every time.

There haven’t been any more late-night chats with Donna, but I won’t be too surprised to hear from Sally that Donna has come through again. When I was home for a family Christmas last month, Sally and I finally sat for a reading. In the reading, Donna came through and offered some suggestions on various means of more conscious communication. I’ll let Sally share any updates in the comments section below.

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Sally and Donna

Granddog Rainy knew…

On the last day that Rainy, the granddog, would see Donna, he refused to leave Donna’s side. And much to the amusement of all, he insisted on sitting very close to her on the sofa, protecting her. Did he know Donna was headed for a fall? Perhaps. Our animals have a second sight that goes beyond the average human, and Rainy is clearly no exception.

Donna_with_dog

In closing

Despite the “sink or swim” string of events of early 2015 (of which Donna’s passing was just one), I am happy to report that Sally has swum to shore and has found firm footing once again.

Sally, thank you from the bottom of my heart for sharing your story with me and my friends around the globe. It is filled with love and hope and strength for us all. And it reminds us that there is no death, only a transition to a “wonderful” place, where our lives continue with great purpose.

Love and light to you all, my friends~

Renee

 

 

 

 

 

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Greetings my friends,

scosThe following is a lecture I delivered while serving at the Swampscott Church of Spiritualism (in Swampscott, Massachusetts) a few years ago. I’d forgotten about it and just today found it on a thumb drive. I’d like to share it with you because these themes are coming up often in my readings. It’s rather long…so don’t feel like you need to finish in one reading!

“Why?”

As I pondered my topic for today, I kept coming back to this question: “Why does Spirit take time to communicate with us?” Besides the healing of grief and the proof of continuous life, I was wondering about the higher purpose in it all, and how this communication serves our spiritual development. Here we have a religion formed around the phenomenon of Spirit Communication, but with only 10 guiding principles, and no dogma or creed. As a result, we don’t often delve deeply into  the “why” of it all.

I thought to myself, ‘If I can identify the primary themes that come through again and again from Spirit, then perhaps I can put my finger on the “why” of it.’ So Thursday night, I grabbed a notepad and pen, settled into a comfortable chair, closed my eyes and took a few deep breaths. I allowed my mind to relax and trace back over the years of mediumship studies and of receiving and recording messages, seeking common and significant themes. I let myself be “inspired” to work in league with Spirit. Very quickly, themes began flowing in and I wrote them down, and as I did, I would ask, “Why is this theme important? Why does Spirit focus on this? How does it help us? What are we to do with these messages?” And in response, a thematic hierarchy emerged that would form the basis of today’s lecture.

At the very top of this hierarchy a very specific, and somewhat surprising expression was impressed upon me. It’s one with which you are probably all familiar, but may not have understood or even considered in the context of Spirit Communication. It’s just two words: “Know thyself.” That’s it. “Know thyself.”

KnowThyselfAre you surprised as well? It doesn’t seem at first blush to encompass all that we consider to be the goal and purpose of Spirit communications or communion with the Divine, so further research was clearly needed. To begin, I had no idea to whom I should attribute this expression. Googling revealed that it was so much more interesting and certainly more relevant than I had anticipated. It all began to make sense, particularly in light of my recent studies in Mexico, but I’ll get to that in a moment.  So let me share with you why this simple phrase, “Know thyself,” can be offered up as supporting affirmation  and benefits for Spirit Communication in our lives.

The expression, “Know thyself” is attributed to Pythagoras, Socrates and many later philosophers, but it has its earliest-documented appearance in the ancient Egyptian Temple of Luxor, which dates20120214-LuxorTempleEgypt_2007 back 3400 years ago. I happened to visit this temple in 1981, and I can tell you it is magnificent. Sacred teachings are inscribed on walls and pillars all around the temple. There are two parts of the Temple of Luxor; the outer temple where the beginning initiates were allowed to gather, and the inner temple where one could enter only after being proven worthy and ready to acquire the higher knowledge and insights.

One of the proverbs in the Outer Temple is, “The body is the house of God.” In the Inner Temple, we find inscribed, “Man, know thyself … and thou shalt know the Gods.”[21]

So that was ancient Egypt. Now let’s jump over to Mexico for a minute. I recently spent 3 weeks in Mexico completing my yoga teacher training at Present Moment Retreat. I went there very focused on the yoga postures, on the idea of teaching and integrating this teaching meditationinto my understanding of healing through the chakras. What I didn’t anticipate was how Sadhana Yoga, or the yoga of spiritual practice—one of the 8 limbs or areas of yoga— would so capture my attention. Sadhana Yoga is the Sanskrit term for spiritual discipline, or “The Path to Realization.” The Path to Realization? Hmmm. That sounds a little like, “Know Thyself,” doesn’t it?

The Yoga Sutras are the core teachings of Yoga, and discuss among many things, the importance of releasing distractions of the intellect, emotional self, and the ego, to find equanimity in our lives, and once achieved, to find greater connection to the Conscious Absolute, to God, the Divine–or Infinite Intelligence, as we Spiritualists say.

What does it mean?

To “Know thyself,” as the ancient Egyptians proclaim or to “Practice the Path to Realization” as the ancient Indian sages teach, both represent the soul’s journey toward inner knowing. It is acknowledgement that we are a spark of the Divine, and that we carry this God light within us at all times. The purer we can be in thought and action, the closer we can follow our soul’s goals in this lifetime, and not be derailed by fear, grief, addictions or other negative influences. The human race, and the human body itself, has reached a point of evolution in this millennium where connecting with our higher self, our God self, is increasingly possible. We are indeed in the age of enlightenment. Through meditation, through spiritual music and mantra, through mediumship and prayer, we may attain our connection to Spirit and to our inner spiritual selves much more readily.

Each of us has a purpose in this lifetime, and if you are here, in this church today (or reading this on my blog today), you have been called upon to ignite your light, to know thyself, and to illuminate and find your purpose.

What’s the process?

And how does one come to “Know Thyself?” The answer with which Spirit inspired me was also simple:  “Be Present. Live in the Present Moment.” To know thyself requires full attention to the present. I used to wonder a lot about this idea of “Living in the Present” because we need to learn from our past, no? And if I’m not planning my future, it will surely be a mess. So, I didn’t really get it. But what I’ve learned through my spiritual quest is this:

  • Yes, we need to learn from our past but Spirit encourages us not to dwell there.
  • And yes, we need to attend to our future, but to not dwell there either, longing for things we don’t have in our lives today, and missing out on what today offers us. How we live today has a tremendous impact on the success of our tomorrows, and this is a message that comes through often from Spirit.

Now, back to my brainstorming. Under the category of “Be Present” emerged a list entitled: “How to live in the present.” From there, it was easy to see the connections to our lives and practices as Spiritualists. Certainly, none of these are exclusive to Spiritualism or any religious philosophy for that matter, but it’s very comforting to think about how much Spirit works with us in this task, and how the practices of Spiritualism promote “being present,” so that we can “know ourselves” and evolve spiritually toward that best expression of ourselves.

  1. The first strategy to living in the present is to release negative emotions that tie us to the past. In Principle No. 4, we affirm that the existence and personal identity of an individual continue after the change called death. Connection to Spirit allows us to ease our grief, to heal the pain of loss, to more easily detach from wanting to live in the past and to gradually find joy again in living in the present. In pursuing this goal, Spirit utilizes many means of communicating with us: the most obvious being through message work, but then it broadens dramatically from there to communication in meditation, in dreams, via hypnosis, everyday inspiration, physical signs, music lyrics, energetic promptings to follow one path or another—and even through the mouths of young children and strangers.
  2. The second strategy to living in the present is: Quieting the mind through meditation or meditative practices. Every week in our service, we have the opportunity to be guided through meditation, to let go of everything we are thinking and feeling, and to just BE. The Yoga Sutras tell us that “the Practice of Meditation is direct knowing (of thyself) through intuition” It’s a window to our higher self and Spirit. It also teaches that “when the mind is busy with thought, it cannot know itself, and so cannot know the God within.”
  3. The third strategy is Being Fully Present with Others: I first came to the church in Spring of 2002, and in the summer of that year, I and several others from the church headed to Camp Etna for a long weekend. While there, I sat for my first long reading from a gifted medium, who is now the pastor of the Greater Boston Church of Spiritualism, Rev. Mary DiGiovanni. I recall only one aspect of that entire reading, and it was about being present. My grandmother Irene, in Spirit, presented a model of communication that contained a wheel within a wheel. I was the inner wheel, but there were many colors of me, each representing my various roles in my relationships with others. The outer wheel contained all the key people in my life, colored to the counter role. My grandmother taught me that when I align myself, or my inner wheel with another, it should click into place, and I should not be continuing to spin the inner wheel, even in my mind.Irene’s wise advice was this: when you are present with someone, you are not checking your phone, or ruffling through papers, or watching TV, or browsing the internet, or thinking about what you are going to eat for dinner, or all the things on your to-do list. Find the purpose in your conversation, in your meeting, in your relationship with them. Know that person, respect that person, and give that person your undivided attention. Get your ego out of the way, and be yourself. Know them and let them know you. It is in these moments of presence that our energy is whole. Give yourself over to that moment, and learn who you are in it—as a mother, father, brother, sister, spouse, friend, employee. Who are you? Know thyself.
  4. The fourth strategy to being present is to focus on a task, event, or happening without distraction: Who was here last week when Troubadour Shawn Madden played with our musicians?  The joyful energy was so compelling that we were all really PRESENT in that experience, together. We were alive in that energy—and I don’t know about you, but I carried that with me for days. How many of you sang, “Lighten up…whoa…lighten up. Don’t take yourself so serious!” Talk about a message of Being Present, and knowing yourself, right?  That joy, that bliss – that is our souls’ natural state, that is the state we are meant to live within, and when we create these opportunities for ourselves, we tap into that inner Divinity, that light within; we connect with our higher self, and we remember who we are. Yeah…that’s being present. Being present is also when we are really focused on a single task in solitude – that’s when we tap into our purpose, into a stream of inspiration from both our own higher self and from Spirit. We get in the ZONE, we listen, we co-create our futures with the Divine Intelligence, and come to better know ourselves.
  5. Become the watcher of your life: One of the spiritual practices I took away from my yoga training was learning to rise above and detach from external drama around me, and to become an observer so that I may maintain my equanimity and sense of personal purpose. It’s so much easier to think and to just BE when you are not involved or implicated in difficult life dramas around you, dramas that you didn’t start and have no way to control. How many of you have gotten messages from Spirit about exactly that? “Release,” says Spirit.” Allow. Step back. It’s not your battle, not your decision, not your life. Let go.” Right? Sound familiar? Become the watcher of your life, the impartial witness; give yourself permission to step away and detach from negative dramas unfolding around you.
  6. Discover and embrace your life purpose: Many of the messages from Spirit have to do with overcoming current challenges in our lives, and offering words of encouragement, love and support. But there’s a bigger picture to your life, a strand of purpose that threads itself through all your life experiences. If you practice being present in all these ways, sit quietly in meditation, releasing negative thoughts and emotions, and listen carefully to the promptings of your soul, you know what your purpose is. And if you’re not sure, in your meditation just ask Spirit to show you. Then, follow the signs that Spirit puts before you. Listen for messages. Pay attention to your dreams and to the sychronicities that occur in your life. And don’t just say, “Oh, that was cool,” but rather, “Oh, that was cool. Now what does it mean? What is Spirit saying to me? What can I do and learn from this?” Sometimes the message is just, “We’re here, so relax. Things are going to be fine. You’re on track.” And we then allow ease to displace anxiety and dis-ease.

Savor Life’s Sweetness!

lollipopLet me close today by sharing a message that I brought to another in circle recently. It began with the image of child and a large lollipop—one of those big flat round ones that spiral with color, and take a very long time to finish off. Firstly, it was interesting that it was this type of lollipop, for the spiral represents the journey of the soul and is found on antiquities around the world. But the message itself was simple, “Just as children so easily do, take time in your busy life to savor its sweetness. All the sweet moments that come to you—be present with them, take in all the joy they offer and  live those moments fully.”

Be present, know thyself and through this, know God.

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“And suddenly…God breaks into our lives, if we only notice it.”
~Rev. Kim K. Crawford Harvie

Candlelight Service at Arlington Street Church

Christmas Eve Candlelight Service Arlington Street Church in Boston

Last night I attended the beautiful candlelight service at the Arlington Street Church in Boston. Rev. Kim Crawford Harvie delivered the sermon entitled, “And Suddenly…” in which she spoke about the many subtle ways in which God reaches out and touches us; we need only be aware of how [s/he] works through us in love. It is that spark of God’s light and love that we can then pass along to our fellow travelers.

A few weeks ago, ‘God broke into my life,’ and certainly in cahoots with my Loved Ones in Spirit, delivered the most amazing Christmas gift for me to share with my family. For me, as for many of you, Christmas is a time of mixed blessings and emotions. It’s wonderful to get swept up into the hustle and bustle of the season, searching for those perfect gifts, decorating our homes with strings of lights, preparing and sharing our favorite foods, and wrapping ourselves in the love of friends and family and the good humor that flows sweet through these special days. But for many, there’s also that subtle sadness that creeps in as we remember our Loved Ones who have passed into Spirit—their absence still heavy in our hearts.

Catharsis

Catharsis

I too, was feeling that subtle sadness creep in. I’d visited some of my family in Minnesota over Thanksgiving, but this Christmas the family was to be scattered across the country, and I was on my own. I had hoped that the loving energy and happy memories of my Thanksgiving trip would carry me through Christmas, but I had underestimated the emotional power of the season. It was Saturday, December 8th to be exact, when I woke up feeling undeniably blue. And when I feel blue, I clean my house. As I go through the motions of cleaning my physical home, my mind is freed to roam over and through and around what is troubling me, seeking solace and resolution. It’s a ritual of catharsis, and it always lifts my spirits, so after a hearty breakfast, I pulled out the vacuum and my dust rags and went at it with every bit of energy I could summon.

If you know me, or have been following my blog, you may have learned that in the past few years my parents, Dennis and Elva, and my sister, Laura, passed into Spirit. During my early teen years, my sister Susie and brother Merle also left our Earth Plane for The Other Side. So when I say I was feeling a little sad about not being with family—I mean all of them, here on the Earth Plane and in Spirit. As I pushed and pulled the vacuum through the rooms of my house, my mind was tracing back to the many joy-filled Christmases of my past. As an adult, I would travel from the far corners of the Earth to get home for Christmas, to share those few special days with my family. What a pleasure it was to sit around the formal dinner table set with family heirloom china, silver, and crystal goblets, plates piled high with favorite family recipes. How fun it was to give out the presents I had so carefully selected. Every year, I’d marvel at how my nieces and nephews had grown, I’d catch up on the latest news in my siblings’ lives, and I’d swap favorite books with my father. And I always looked forward to those special heart-to-heart talks with my mother after everyone had gone back home. Oh, how I missed those Christmases. As the vacuum whirred and whined, I kept telling myself that I needed to learn to “live in the present,” to accept and allow for change, to build new traditions and not grieve what is no longer…but I couldn’t. I wasn’t ready, or I just wasn’t strong enough. Either way, all I wanted was to go back in time and experience our family Christmas just once more. I let the tears flow as I went about my cleaning, waiting for the catharsis, knowing I’d feel better when the whole house was clean.

The lingering 80'sAs I tucked a blanket onto the lower shelf of my TV armoire, my eyes wandered over to an old cassette tape storage box sitting on the same shelf. Day after day I ignore it, but on that day it finally captured my attention. All those old cassettes! Why did I still have them? They needed to go. Time to purge! I pulled out one drawer, then another, and another, and pretty soon six little drawers were lined up on the living room floor before me. Michael Jackson, Madonna, Falco, Whitney Houston, Culture Club (remember them?!), Pat Benatar, Smokey Robinson… Yep, the 80’s. It was fun running my fingers over the labels, pulling them out one by one to read the song list, and thinking back to those crazy years of my youth living in Japan.

And then I saw it. The last in a row of tapes was one that had been personally recorded, with the label “Christmas 1986 (Dec. 24th eve),” in my mother’s handwriting. 1986—one of the very few years I did not come home for Christmas. I’d been living in Japan, my first year out of grad school, and simply couldn’t afford it. I didn’t recall what was on this tape, so I took it over to my stereo system and dropped it in.

The tape: Christmas Eve 1986

The tape: Christmas Eve 1986

My sister, Connie, was the first speaker. She provided the setting: Christmas Eve at Mom and Dad’s. She introduced me to her daughter, my new niece, Jaclyn Susan, whom I’d not yet met for she was just 10 days old. My mother, Elva, then piped in that dinner was over, that Dad had done a good job as “Chief Bottle Washer,” and that they were all about to settle into the living room to open presents. My father, Dennis, then entered the room, and asked what was going on. Quite naturally, he took on the role as my narrator for the next hour—interpreting the hubbub in the room, telling me about the new Day in the Life of America book in which his singing group appeared, and at one point, even humming a little tune with his rich baritone voice. Brother Jim instructed Dad on the use of the recorder, while my sister, Laura, lamented the tear in her little daughter, Sarah’s, new dress.

I pulled the blanket back out of the armoire, curled up on the sofa and closed my eyes. I let the sounds and voices take me there—back to the living room of my family home on Christmas Eve of 1986. As I listened, all my senses became engaged. I could see everyone as they were in those years. I could smell the lingering aromas from the traditional Christmas dinner. I could hear the fire crackling in the fireplace as the Concord Singers Christmas album—with whom my father performed—played in the background. I saw the lights twinkling on the tree and I smelled the boughs of evergreen on the mantel. I saw the children opening their presents and through their shouts of glee as the paper

Daruma-san

Daruma-san

fell away, imagined expressions of joy and excitement on their young faces. I watched and laughed as my late brother-in-law, Rich, read the note I’d attached to the traditional New Year’s gift of a Buddhist Daruma-san I’d sent from Japan. Such wry humor he had! I chuckled as Dad instructed my nephew Lance, “to just read the directions,” printed in Japanese, of course. I took it in, all of it. I let myself be bathed and surrounded in it – the love, the humor, the laughter, the joy, the song, and even the tiny cries of infant Jacklyn. It was a part of me, and I of it. There was no time; there was just this moment, just this little miracle, just this beautiful gift from Heaven—evidence of God and Spirit breaking through.

Spreading the love: if there was ever a gift of God’s love and light to share, it was this one. The very night I discovered the tape, I bought a tape cassette converter and created CD’s for all the members of my family, that they may experience once more the happy voices of their siblings, parents, and grandparents now in Spirit. They are opening their gifts as I write this entry. I can’t wait to hear their reactions.

So, yes, I got my wish for Christmas. I wanted to relive a family Christmas from my past, and I did—again and again and again. God understood my sorrow, heard my prayers muttered over the noise of the vacuum cleaner, and led me to the one thing in my house that could console me, a gift of Christmas past I had long since forgotten. The vibration of the human voice is a very powerful vehicle. It is the energetic stream upon which we connect with Spirit through the divide of time and space. It is the vehicle of prayer, by which God or Universal Intelligence, our Guides, and our Loved Ones in Spirit hear what we hold in our hearts.

So trust. Let God break into your life, and let the miracles unfold.

Happy Holidays, a Merry Christmas, and a Happy New Year to All!

With Love and Light,
~Renee Buck

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Have you ever thought about what it means to be “inspired” or to rely on “inspiration”?

Have you considered that “spirit” is the primary root of these words? What would you say to the idea that inspired thoughts or ideas come to you from those in Spirit who have chosen to work with you, through agreements made before you descended into your life here on Earth? My question to you is this: are you hearing everything they are trying to tell you?

In the zone: Perhaps you’ve noticed that your best ideas come in the shower, or while driving to work, or maybe walking your dog. During such times, your mind is relaxed and between what is known as “alpha” and “theta” brain wave states in hypnosis terms. You’re “out there” or “in the zone” and that’s when the potential for communication to you from Spirit (a.k.a. inspiration) is highest.

What about meditation, you ask? Meditation is among the best conscious forms of relaxation, and affords a high level of readiness for inspired ideas. Deep meditation takes one into a full theta brain wave state, which means you’re pretty wide open for conversation or communion with Spirit. If you seek answers to a particular question, hold that single question in your mind as you allow yourself to fall into a relaxed meditative state. Maintain focus, and then just listen without expectation or judgment.

Prayer? Absolutely. Regardless of religion, the process of prayer can be seen as an active and typically more communicative form of meditation. By active and communicative, I mean that people are usually asking questions of the Divine, seeking answers or help.  The process of prayer is most like meditation when a person is quiet and calm and is actively sharing their heartfelt concerns and then listening with that same open heart for answers. This provides an opening for your Loved Ones, your Spirit Guides, for God to provide the inspiration you need to go on.  But remember, sometimes the answer comes not in words, but in future events–so be aware.

A healthy body raises your vibration and will improve your potential for divine inspiration. This can be done through a variety of means. Luckily for us, the best ways are also the simplest ways:

  • Eat a healthy diet of fresh, natural foods from the earth: fruits, vegetables, whole–and if possible–alkaline grains like millet, quinoa, or buckwheat.
  • Seek PH balance in your diet. Disease, inflammation, and cancer can only thrive in an acidic body–which is enhanced through the Standard American Diet (SAD) of meats, dairy, sugars, simple starches. Best resource I’ve found: The PH Miracle by Dr. Robert Young. Get it, live it. It changed my life.
  • Cut out, or at least cut back on animal protein (derived from meat and dairy) from your diet. Animal protein consumption, particularly in colder climates, where Vitamin D is often deficient, is statistically linked to cancer, MS, and a variety of other diseases. Dairy is also highly mucous forming, which inhibits the body’s absorption of nutrients through the colon. Read the new book, The China Study, by biochemist and nutritionist T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D. He’s a retired Cornell University Professor. It’s described as “the most comprehensive study of nutrition ever conducted.” I learned so much about what our bodies need to be healthy. A must read.
A healthy mind also raises your vibration, opening you up to greater inspiration. Things you can do:
  • Reduce stress through exercise and meditation. Stress is a huge detriment to clear communications from Spirit, so work it out of your system. A combination of yoga practice, aerobic exercise, and weights works great for my own personal physical and spiritual development, strengthening and alignment.
  • Sing! Play music! Surround yourself with sounds that “bring you up.”
  • Spend time with people who bring out the best in you, who are positive and curious, who love the life they are leading. Help your energy-vampire friends as much as you can, and then politely excuse yourself.
  • Do good. Research tells us that doing good, and observing others who do good boosts our immune systems and raises our endorphin levels, i.e. gives us a natural high, and we all like that!
  • Read books and magazines, or watch movies with uplifting and/or thought-provoking messages. Limit consumption of dark energy materials, e.g. stories of horror, violence, abuse and oppression. These produce feelings of sadness, fear, anger, or desire for revenge: all emotions that lower our vibration, and further separate us from Spirit.
  • Keep alcohol consumption to a minimum. It actively lowers your vibration.
  • Drugs. Just say no. They also actively lower your body’s vibration. Prescription drugs? Well…do your own soul searching on that one. If you’ve been relying on Western Medicine practices only, consider consulting a Naturopath, Medical Intuitive, or specialist in Orthomolecular Medicine to better  understand the mind-body dis-ease connection. Many natural remedies (like healthy diet and vitamin therapy) work as well or better and are not so acidic to the body.

And there you have it: a broad-based formula for enhancing your connection to divine inspiration.

Feel free to share your thoughts or experiences regarding your own personal inspiration below. Where do you get your best ideas from? How do they come to you? Do you actively put yourself in that space, or is it impromptu – like lightbulb flashes overhead?

With Love and Light ~ Renee Buck

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