Just a bit of background – I met Anita through one of my teachers, Rose Rosetree. Rose had the idea to put up what she calls the Portal of Deeper Perception and invited many of her students to create blogs if they were so inclined. Of course, I was down with that! :) And so were Anita, Ryan and several others!
Anyway, Anita jumped back into the Thursday Thirteen with a vengeance today and I was BLOWN AWAY by this post (and not because she mentions me at the end, either!) She truly “gets it” and I could not have said it better myself. If she’s not on your blogroll, check her out. She’s going to be a famous doctor someday and you can say you knew her when she was just a’blogging away like a regular chick!
So, Bubbles, this one is for you with a big ass hug for POST OF THE MONTH! (I think I will make up my own awards and go around giving them out! Anita is my first winner!)
Thirteen Lessons from My Foray into the World of Metaphysics
About 2 years ago (right in the middle of what seemed like the most hellish part of medical school), my life started “falling apart” in ways I couldn’t understand. Even though everything seemed perfectly fine on the surface, I knew things were changing radically – and the fact that things looked the same on the surface made me feel even more confused and discombobulated.
Without knowing what to do, I started “paddling” – and hard! After doing that for a while and growing tired of that, as well as falling into a deep state of unhappiness that I could not understand or articulate, I realized I wanted to understand what was happening to me and why – I went through a period of introspection, then I started to try to find other like-minded people, finally I started to consult people in the metaphysical world.
These are some of the lessons I learned in that process.
1. The only person you can truly change is yourself. I have been doing a lot of venting and kvetching with another friend – particularly this week, for some reason (is there something astrological going on?) – and what we have both realized is that complaining about what others are doing or aren’t doing is senseless. It generates a lot of negative energy that isn’t directed in any purposeful or constructive way. It also takes away the focus of one’s energy from self-awareness and self-change and directs it toward the very people we not only cannot change, but perhaps have no business attempting to change.
2. No matter how good our intentions, psychic coercion is still psychic coercion. “Psychic coercion” is a term that Rose Rosetree coined, but coercion is a term that I have heard many metaphysicians use and caution against. There is sometimes a desire or tendency for people to feel they know what is best for their friends or loved ones and to “wish” these things for them. Psychic coercion is often used in a religious context – for example, wishing that a loved one would convert to your religious faith – but it can be used in any context. Any intent that involves trying to impose your desire over any other human being outside of yourself is a form of coercion. Better to wish others love and the highest good for them… and then detach. On the flip side, having been on the receiving end of psychic coercion, it feels terrible – especially when the other person tries to convince you, lovingly, that they are trying to do what is best for you – something that you do not want them to do for you or something that you do not believe in or want for yourself. Such examples, for me, include being told, “If you were a good Christian, you would do…” and “I am telling you this to save your soul from burning in hell” and “Anita, I am really trying to help you because your sense of reality is completely deluded.” Thanks, but, umm, no thanks? Actually, on a more serious note, Chrissie and Gary Blaze talk in their book Power Prayer about how prayer that coerces can actually have the potential to cause serious harm to people.
(Edited to add Anita’s comment: “Please, though, correct that “Rose” developed the term ‘psychic coercion’. It comes from Teaching of the Inner Christ. They just made me a lay minister.” Thank you, Rose, for the correction in attribution and in accuracy.)
3. Example is more powerful than any words. More than anything that could ever be said, living what you believe is what it’s all about and where true power resides. People who don’t understand or speak your language will see what you do, even if they cannot understand what you say. This category of people may include very young children, perhaps including your own!
4. More important than talking the talk is walking the walk (corollary to #3). Whatever you say, especially if you are a spiritual teacher and believer, is meaningless if you don’t practice your beliefs by the life you lead.
5. “Religion is the shell, spirituality is the essence.” This is something Amma said during one of her talks this year in Marlboro, MA. What she means is that no matter what your religion is or what your faith is, the fundamental essence of every religion is the same: love and compassion for all living beings.
6. Let go, let go, let go. This is the advice that Chrissie Blaze gave me in my astrology session. While it was specifically meant for me, it really applies to just about anyone. Let go of the things that are holding you back, especially negative feelings like anger or resentment. In order to move forward, you cannot hold onto things from the past that keep you locked into negative thoughts and patterns. The past cannot be changed. The power is in the present and in the future. 2006 is an especially good year to do this and this summer, in particular, is an excellent time to be working on this.
7. No matter what you say or the image your project externally, your aura holds the real truth. These aren’t exactly Rose’s words, but it is something she expressed to me once. I was talking about something I found unfair – that someone was acting one way and really wasn’t that way at all but had seemed to “fool” everyone. Rose was trying to reassure me that the real truth cannot be hidden, in fact, it is right there in front of us – encoded right into that person’s aura. Learn to become an aura reader, and you will see the real truth – it will not only generate more discernment and understanding of that person, it will surprisingly generate a great deal of unexpected compassion. I’ve sometimes asked Rose to read the auras of people who are very difficult for me in order for me to avoid projecting my own powerful feelings onto those people and how I interpret their auras, and in every single reading of every single person, there is always a kernel of compassion that has been generated within me (and it wasn’t because Rose was trying to toy with my emotions).
8. You can learn from a lesson – or not. I’ve had a lot of really difficult things happen to me in my life, especially in the past five years. But when I’ve had these lessons re-framed to me in various metaphysical consultations, I’ve been able to see what these experiences were really about. For example, I have been the victim of acts of aggression from people in positions of power. Chrissie told me that the reason this happened is that I am here to learn about the lessons of power – because, eventually, I will be in a position to wield power. So, of course the lessons of power came my way. Carol Fitzpatrick told me that I was to learn the lesson of integrity – it is one of the reasons I experienced what it felt like to have people be dishonest to me or to act with deception. Carol even commented that if I had not learned this lesson or if I had chosen not to learn it, it would have been my downfall and everything I would have been meant to create in my future would have become totally distorted. Sometimes experiences are painful because the lessons are so important that they are meant to be learned – deeply. But you always have free will (including the option not to learn a life lesson), and that will never be taken away.
9. People “wake up” at different times. While the energetic vibration of the planet is increasing as a whole, each individual’s process of “waking up” and raising his or her level of consciousness and vibration happens at different times and at different rates. We can gently nudge people on their spiritual path, but forcing people to wake up or to wake up in the way we want them to is coercive (see #2) and goes against spiritual light. It also violates their free will. Carol had a great explanation for me in our session together: If it’s any consolation, people eventually wake up to the pain that they cause others because something similar will happen to them, and they often decide to raise their level of consciousness as a result. If they choose not to do this, life often becomes really hard or they sail on through and become vaguely unhappy without knowing the real reason why.
10. Don’t hide your spiritual light. This is something Rose told me – though not in those words – in a session we had before I started blogging for her. I wanted to see how I would do in an integrity session – spiritual integrity, communication integrity, and power integrity – and what areas I needed to improve. I scored a 9/10 on spiritual integrity – I lost one point because Rose told me that while I possess wonderful spiritual light and integrity, when I encounter people who intimidate me spiritually (for me, those are pushy evangelical Christians – nothing against the Christian folk here, I actually attended a Christian school for a long time…), rather than shining my spiritual light, I run away and hide it under a bush! This is true, BTW. Now, when I’m at spiritual or religious gatherings, I try to shine my spiritual light – and speak up!
11. Be who you are – and express your integrity the way that you are meant to – even if that is different from everyone else. This comes up in a lot of sessions I’ve had. One of my biggest lessons in life has been to learn not to be afraid to be different from others. I constantly try to conform and be like everyone else because I have a powerful belief that it will make me more accepted, more well-liked. Not only does this not always happen, trying to be someone I am really not has proven to be my downfall, time and again. I’m repeatedly told: You are not here to be like everyone else. That’s OK. You’re here to be you, which is different. It’s not the status quo. But it’s good.
12. “Know fear,” not “no fear.” This is also supposed to be one of my biggest lessons in life: to become so familiar with fear that I am unfazed. Not to ignore fear or pretend it’s not there, but to know it so intimately it is like a close friend. Elizabeth Hermon is the one who first used this expression and told me that this was an important life lesson for me.
13. Focus on positive energy and how to contribute to make the world a better place. Not on negativity and what is wrong with the world and what other people are doing or not doing to make the world go to hell in a handbasket. Full circle back to #1. As Mahatma Gandhi said, “Be the change you wish to see in this world.” (Also the title of Lisa W’s wonderful blog, “Be the change you wish to see in this world”) There is no end to the negative things that we can focus on in our daily lives. Instead, be radical and focus on what’s good, what’s going right. Better yet, focus on how you can share your gifts at your workplace, in your neighborhood, in your community, in the world at large – in other words, be the change you wish to see in this world. As Snarky mentioned in #13 of her TT, “Remember that what you say, even if it’s small and (to you) insignificant, could be a catalyst for something great.” You can change the life of just one person – that person just might be (or start with) yourself.