A dream come true

Earlier this week I visited my state capital and had the immense pleasure of attending an event with psychic-medium John Edward. I am very lucky that my mom is not only interested in the New Age and spiritual movement, but that she also has the inclination to buy tickets before asking me if I would like to go. The event sold out very quickly after it was first announced and I believe 600 people were in attendance Thursday night.

This type of event was what I believe is called a gallery reading, and was very similar to what I had seen on his show, Crossing Over. The stage provides a significant area for John to move around and scan the audience.  He introduced himself and described how his process works. There were a few instances where he could have been a bit clearer – for example, after he finished his opening spiel, he said he would take 4 questions from the audience. Those four people who had questions wanted to ask about relatives, when he was only answering questions about the process. As he felt compelled, John went to various sections of the audience to begin reading. The first people he read for were two rows behind us, directly at the end of the aisle. I believe there were two women and one man. John started by referencing a young male who had passed with a J name (he thought it was ‘Jack’ but the boy’s name was actually Zach). Throughout the process of the reading, it was revealed that Zach had died in a house fire, with the man, his father, blaming the boy’s mother for his death. Several other family members ‘came through’, and John described how even though the people you came with may not be related, you do have a social network on the other side, which enables the spirits to all make an appearance.

Now here’s where I don’t think that John has any information pre-given. During the time he was attempting to convey information to this family, the woman at the end of the aisle kept editorializing. This means that he would say ‘do you have an aunt or sister or close friend who passed with an A name who is related to February?’ and she would pause and think and say ‘I kinda have this friend who was born and died in February’, so John would ask for her name (which was an A name) and she very slowly acknowledged it. I don’t remember exactly what she said or what the information was, but the point was, she didn’t know what he was talking about and it didn’t appear that she was very coherent. At one point, after she had tried explaining one thing or another, John changed his posture on the stage and asked, “let me ask you this – do you think the rest of the audience cares? This sounds mean but I know everyone else is sitting here, wishing you would hurry up so we can move on and I can read someone else.” She beat around the bush and repeatedly did not appear to have been paying attention to what he was giving her, nor did their entire group seem very convinced of what was going on.

I think part of this stems from being a little on the spot, and a bit from being the first group John worked with. It’s totally understandable to be caught off-guard and to stammer your words a bit, but the way she spoke so slowly and deliberately made me feel like she was waiting and expecting something very specific. Unfortunately, she wasn’t the only one that night who really dragged her feet. In fact, the event ran over by almost half an hour because John was trying to deliver a message to a woman who just wasn’t… I don’t even know how to describe her. John would say ‘it’s someone West of here – where are you from?’ and she replied with ‘the..city? I’m …from here’. He actively discourages people filling in the blanks with information. John does not want you to tell him anything about the sitter or the spirit besides ‘yes’ or ‘no’ unless he asks.

We had a fantastic time. I didn’t learn a lot (because this is my nerd hobby) but my mom and our cousin both learned a few things. John mentioned spirit guides, psychic protection, auric vision… he also talked to a few women about how they were fixers or healers, how they felt personally responsible for other people’s problems and wanted to fix them, and ultimately how this wasn’t very healthy. He also talked about the law of attraction with a woman who feared she has or is developing breast cancer. I have no words to express how grateful I was to be there, in the same room with him, as he gave readings… I have no words to convey how validating it was for me to hear the things he talked about and recognize that I already knew most of them, nor how validating it was to see that he and I conduct readings with a similar style. It was a priceless experience I won’t soon forget.

Reiki & Alzheimer’s

As an avid Reiki practitioner, I regularly search the internet for recent articles that talk about Reiki. Today I found one that talked about working with Alzheimer’s patients, and thought you might like to see what the article said. (source) Here’s the clip that talks about Reiki;

Many studies and clinical reports have shown the benefits of music with dementia patients, and some recent findings have demonstrated positive effects from therapies like reiki, which are designed to clear away stress and balance subtle energies. Therese Silva Johnson, a gerontologist and owner of a facility that treats many Alzheimer’s patients, began to provide reiki treatments at her facility. As she experimented with these treatments she noted that although the disease progressed, her patients did not suffer the usual level of symptoms of anxiety, agitation, pain, and physical discomfort. Pacing and wandering were drastically reduced. Paranoia began to subside. The mere laying on of hands allowed patients to become completely relaxed, more present, and lucid. Wounds healed in half the time with daily 5-10 minute Reiki treatments. Johnson found that even those patients who normally resisted different kinds of touch (bathing, dressing, grooming, etc.) welcomed and even asked for Reiki. Reiki can even be given as a long distance treatment for those with special needs as it does not require physical touch – it only requires a spiritual or energetic resonance connection. Therese developed a program for reiki therapy to be applied by caregivers, which can be found at www.reikimastertherese.com/TreatingAlzheimers.pdf

M. Deborah Salach at San Francisco State University found in her research, published in 2006, that reiki reduces depression & anxiety in Alzheimer’s dementia patients. Meanwhile, study authors Crawford, Leaver, & Mahoney found benefits of reiki provided to Alzheimer’s patients at a Native American Indian reservation in Maine, sharing their findings in the Journal of Complementary and Alternative Medicine in 2006. With patients and caregivers experiencing stress and emotional depletion, this type of therapy can help foster peace and harmony and replenish the energy of those addressing the everyday challenges of Alzheimer’s.

I’m aware that Reiki has helped me with my own issues, so I wasn’t surprised to see that other people are experiencing benefits from Reiki. I was, however, quite pleased to see the variety of situations the article addresses, especially the part where Alzheimer’s patients who didn’t typically like to be touched were asking for it. I downloaded the PDF and will be saving it for future reference, and I recommend you do the same if you are a Reiki practitioner. There is more great information and treatment advice in that 3 page document which makes it a fabulous freebie. It’s just one more reason I hope to someday offer Reiki in hospitals or health clinics.

Because Quantum Mechanics says so

This past weekend I had the pleasure of going with my mom to our annual scrapbooking retreat. It’s hosted by the Village Creek Bible Camp in a beautiful valley in Lansing, Iowa. Coming to camp is a mini-vacation. The valley is gorgeous with all the fall colors, and there’s something very special about the camp experience itself; meaning the shared lodgings, cold showers, sleeping in bunk beds and of course, being knee-deep in friends we haven’t seen in a whole year.

Mom and I have done this for a few years – her scrapbooking, vending, teaching, and helping other ladies put their memories on a 12×12 paper while I run around the camp – but this was the first year I had Reiki under my belt. I was so thrilled to offer some Reiki treatments on the side as everyone else worked on their pages. Since recently receiving my Practical Reiki Master attunement, I really appreciated the opportunity to practice on some very deserving women. I’m hoping next year I can bring my massage table and have a dedicated space for ladies to come experience the wonder that is Reiki.

I’ve been hesitant to share about my time with VCBC because it’s a Baptist bible camp, and I’m not Baptist. I’m fully aware that I am not Baptist and I’m also fully aware that the camp IS Baptist, therefore I am aware I will be hearing things I might not otherwise choose to encounter. However, after doing this for a few years, I’m comfortable being there, and I sort of know what to expect. This weekend’s speaker talked about giving things to God. Essentially, I interpreted it as, there are times in our lives when we try very, very hard, and we might be wasting our efforts by trying so hard, so learning to let go and trust in the process can go a long way towards getting us on or keeping us on the path we need to be going on.

I’d like to share with you a 9 minute clip I recently found on another blog. It talks a LOT about quantum mechanics so I had to watch it twice – once to learn there’s a lot of things I don’t understand about quantum mechanics, and the second time to go back and make sure I understood the message it was trying to convey – so please don’t let the highly technical jargon scare you off.

 

Religion has been telling us for years that giving up our focus on the outcome of a problem will open us up to the infinite possibilities that MIGHT happen. Sometimes they say it like ‘let Jesus take the wheel because he knows where the curves in the roads are’ or ‘trusting in God is a lot easier than trying to plan out every second of your life’, but they’re still saying it if they use different words. Quantum mechanics says that when we try to force things into a specific identification (i.e. trying to find the exact location of the basketball on the court), we limit the possibilities to fit our perspective.

Quantum mechanics phrases it a bit differently. In the video, they talk about how inappropriate it would be to ask the specific location of a basketball when it’s size is uniformly distributed across the basketball court, when no one can see it, because no one is there to observe where the basketball exists. It’s very trippy, don’t be embarrassed if you don’t understand it right away. Our position as an observer, in any situation, changes the outcome of events.

This is identical to one of the core operating functions of Reiki. We are told repeatedly through our studies and in classes that all we have to do with Reiki is to set the intention for it to be present – and then we let it do it’s thing. We can intend healing for a specific issue, but we cannot control the solution that Reiki will achieve. Lots of people (myself included) have tried to do otherwise and it’s a complete waste of effort. The Reiki will go wherever it’s supposed to, and that’s all we can ask of it. Like I told the people that I worked with this weekend, we come to VCBC and we hope to scrapbook. VCBC doesn’t do the scrapbooking for us. But it DOES allow us the opportunity to scrapbook, if we so choose. And if we’re not too concerned about scrapbooking (being productive), we might actually have a good time, reconnect with old friends, and have a few laughs.

The point is, we can save ourselves a lot of grief and struggle if we trust in the process and allow things to happen as needed. Louise Hay has an affirmation I like to say a lot – “Everything is happening in it’s own time”. Repeating this affirmation, and reminding myself that sometimes things don’t work for a reason, brings me a lot of peace and comfort. Life doesn’t need me constantly making it ‘go’ in order to keep things running. If there’s something I want… I’m okay with letting it happen in it’s own time and possibly being greater than I could ever imagine, rather than stressing out about it when there’s nothing I can do about it.

I know one thing, that I know nothing

When I began looking for a spiritual teacher, I think I was under the impression I’d only have one teacher. I think it was a dreamy notion but it certainly wasn’t practical. Case in point, the first spiritual person I really met managed to get me to buy a book or a crystal or a box of incense whenever I visited, but didn’t teach me a thing. The second one is a medium working around here and she wanted to charge me $200 if I wanted more than a few minutes of her time on her lunch break. The third one seemed to be more of a teacher, since she offered to teach me Reiki. But unfortunately, she’s just as human as the others were.

In my previous blog entry I talked about my experience with Reiki was so far. I didn’t talk much about the people I encountered. The reason I am hesitant to bring up this area of discussion is because I don’t want to come off as a wholly judgmental person or that I am ripping anyone apart. That is not my intention at all and I hope that I can convey that through the way I talk about specific people. But I do want to talk about a few things so that others might have this knowledge in mind before they go see another teacher, or to connect with others who may have had similar issues. Continue reading

My journey with Reiki – so far

So far, my journey with Reiki has been a bit sporadic, compared to others. I remember reading about Reiki when I was in high school, in particular, the areas where the symbols were addressed, and that particular day, fellow students became interested and ended up saying ‘ooh, what sacred symbols they are if they’re published in a book’. I got to a point where the authors of both books I had said I needed to find a teacher in order to actually learn Reiki. So I put the desire to learn Reiki up on a shelf. You know, that shelf of things that you think about but can’t see yourself doing? I have a lot of things on that shelf, sadly, but that’s for another time. Continue reading

I have returned!

Okay, only sort of.

I’m in the process of updating my blog a little bit – it really needs a good dusting since I haven’t touched it in at least six months. I have a new layout in the works, and I need to make a few tweaks to the settings, namely so that I get a notification when someone comments on a post. The good news is, I finally got a new computer, and it’s an iMac, so not only is it functional with minimal requirements for the user, it’s very shiny and cool and LOOKS cool to play with. Plus I invested in a netbook that I can take with me to blog on the go. It’s been going quite well, except I’m posting my best stuff on Tumblr, and I shouldn’t be. I have very much enjoyed my time on Tumblr, and it’s helped me connect with lots of people, but it’s just not an area where I can do a lot of core text-related posts. It’s very difficult for me to get feedback, to track views and users, and to keep track of everything else I have going on. I’ll still be using Tumblr so if you’d like to follow me, my url is constantine319.tumblr.com.

Other good news is that I undertook and completed all three levels of Usui Reiki training this summer. I’ve also broadened my tarot expertise just a smidge, and I’ve definitely done some more networking. And I’ve actually been using that Kindle of mine a bit more, too.  (For those of you who don’t know, I’m a bit of a bookaholic. Rearranging the apartment this summer yielded a hefty 200+ count of spiritual books, and quite the backache the day after.) So, I’ve got a few book reviews in the process that I can’t wait to share with you. Plus I’ve acquired a few new tools – crystals, a Tibetan singing bowl, a massage table, and some new oracle and tarot decks – that I’m excited to talk about, also.

A few more things I’d like to share – I’m currently taking classes with Alice Langholt of Reiki Awakening Academy. I found Alice’s blog shortly after I began exploring Reiki this past January, and recently inquired about her Energy Healing Certification Program. I’m three classes in and I had my first Practical Reiki attunement yesterday – I am really loving the journey so far. Everyone in the class is really cool, and I’m glad to be a part of a wide spectrum of ages and experience. Alice really knows what she’s talking about, and she has a very charming way of connecting you with the material. (I think that’s a Sagittarius thing.) There are a few more classes I’ve got my eye on. I really should have been sorted into Ravenclaw on Pottermore, because this thirst for knowledge is what’s kept me going the last few weeks. (PS! If you sign up for a class, tell them Jessica Bowman sent you! I get $10 towards the next class I want to take for referrals.) I also created a paranormal investigation group with a few of my friends. We’re in the process of setting up the website, designing the shirts and business cards, and getting the organization itself all established. It’s been a bit meticulous, but being so detail-oriented, I’ve actually enjoyed the process so far.

I think that wraps it up for now – blessings!

What makes one a good friend?

This morning, I asked this question on Twitter: “does a true friend support you no matter what, or can they tactfully tell you when you’re making a mistake?”

This particular question has been weighing on me for several weeks now, in more ways than one. In fact, it’s an issue I’ve always struggled with. I wonder if it is one I will continue to struggle with after the course of this month, or whether I’ve learned my lesson. Continue reading