The next astrological topic I want to discuss is the Zodiac (and by Zodiac I am referring to the Western classic Babylonian Zodiac, not the Chinese Zodiac). There are two main types of systems of astrology: Western or tropical astrology and Hindu or sidereal astrology. Western astrology divides the Zodiac based on the Sun’s position as it moves through the ecliptic and celestial sphere over the course of the year. Hindu astrology does the same but also bases the positions of the zodiac on constellations and fixed stars beyond our solar system as opposed to corresponding with the natural change in seasons as the earth moves in it’s orbit over the year. My astrology articles are based on Western astrology rather than Hindu astrology as that system resonates with me more. While the Zodiac signs are probably somewhat familiar to many people due to the ever present horoscope listings in magazines, newspapers, and online, many people do not really understand how they were derived. The Zodiac can be divided up in several different ways:
THE GENDERS (DUALITIES): First, the Zodiac can be divided in two genders with six Zodiac signs making up each of the two genders: masculine and feminine.
Masculine: (Aries, Gemini, Leo, Libra, Sagittarius, Aquarius); These signs are direct and energetic. The energy expresses outward. Masculine signs find their strength from action.
Feminine: (Taurus, Cancer, Virgo, Scorpio, Capricorn, Pisces); These signs are receptive and magnetic. The energy expresses inward. Feminine signs are self contained and find their strength through inner reserves.
THE QUALITIES (QUADRUPLICITIES): Second, the Zodiac can be divided in three sectors with four signs making up each sector. These sectors describe a certain quality of each of the signs, and the three sectors are cardinal, fixed, and mutable.
Cardinal: (Aries, Cancer, Libra, Capricorn); Cardinal signs are enterprising and outgoing. They are initiators.
Fixed: (Taurus, Leo, Scorpio, Aquarius); Fixed signs are resistant to change. They perfect and finish things rather than initiate and originate.
Mutable: (Gemini, Virgo, Sagittarius, Pisces); Mutable signs are flexible, versatile, and adaptable. They are able to adjust to differing circumstances.
THE ELEMENTS (TRIPLICITIES): Third, the Zodiac can be divided in four sectors with three signs making up each sector. These four sectors are also known as the four elements: fire, earth, air, water.
Fire: (Aries, Leo, Sagittarius); Fire signs are active, enthusiastic, and are driven to express the self and to create.
Earth: (Taurus, Virgo, Capricorn); Earth signs are grounded, material, cautious, practical, and stable.
Air: (Gemini, Libra, Aquarius); Air signs are mental, intellectual, and communicative. They socialize and conceptualize.
Water: (Cancer, Scorpio, Pisces); Water signs are emotional, intuitive, empathetic, and sensitive.
OPPOSITES (POLARITIES): Fourth, the Zodiac can be divided up into six polarities, or in other words, six pairs of signs that are opposite each other.
- Aries (self) versus Libra (partnership, others)
- Taurus (personal possessions, form and the material) versus Scorpio (legacies and shared possessions, transformation, destruction)
- Gemini (self expression, lower mind) versus Sagittarius (philosophy and higher thinking; expression on a wider level)
- Cancer (home, private, domestic life) versus Capricorn (public life, career and reputation)
- Leo (personal pleasure and creativity) versus Aquarius (hopes and ideals on a larger group oriented scale)
- Virgo (work, service, and self improvement, physical health) versus Pisces (dreams and self delusion, vision, spiritual health)
THE SIGNS: You will notice above that no sign in the Zodiac has the same gender, quality, and element, thus we have 12 unique signs that make up the entire Zodiac. The 12 descriptions below are from an archetype perspective and will be very general. Pages and pages could be written about each sign (and indeed already have been if you go to the right website and/or pick up the right astrology book). My purpose here is to give a brief summary. The dates below are approximately when the sun is in that sign but it can change depending on the year. Also if you have planets within a few degrees (or few days depending on how you look at it) of when the planets change signs, then that planet is actually “on the cusp” of the other sign it is close to. In those cases, people with cusps have a blend of both energies from both signs for that particular planet. Also I am writing the symbol for each because if you think about the qualities of what the symbol for each sign represents, you get an idea of the sign itself.
Aries: (Masculine, Cardinal, Fire); March 21 to April 19; Symbolized by the Ram; Keyword is “I Am”; Opposite of Libra; Ruling planet is Mars; Rules the head. Aries is active, energetic, excitable, impulsive, optimistic, assertive, sexual, able to climb great heights, and open to change and new experiences. Aries is very self oriented and “me first.” The Mars aspects of this sign indicate war, aggression, conflict, courage, passion, competition, tension, accidents, and rules over fire and danger.
Taurus: (Feminine, Fixed, Earth); April 20 to May 20; Symbolized by the Bull; Keyword is “I Have”; Opposite of Scorpio; Ruling planet is Venus; Rules the neck and throat. Taurus is quiet, affectionate, patient, stable, determined, practical, stubborn, strong, plodding, both fierce and gentle, and resistant to change. It also is the sign of accumulating money, property and possessions, and experiencing the material world with all their senses. The Venus aspects of the sign indicate a love of beauty, luxury, arts, pleasure, emotions, and also exceptional creative ability.
Gemini: (Masculine, Mutable, Air); May 21 to June 20; Symbolized by the Twins; Keyword is “I Think”; Opposite of Sagittarius; Ruling planet is Mercury; Rules the hands, arms, shoulders, and lungs. Gemini is lively, energetic, versatile, and intellectual, lives primarily in the mind rather than the emotions, and is extremely adaptable to new situations. It is the sign of thought and communication on a personal level as well as duality and humanism. The Mercury aspects of this sign indicate communication, travel, quick cleverness, and a nervous temperament.
Cancer: (Feminine, Cardinal, Water); June 21 to July 22; Symbolized by the Crab; Keyword is “I Feel”; Opposite of Capricorn; Ruling planet is the Moon; Rules the breasts and stomach. Cancer is receptive, sensitive, moody, imaginative, sympathetic, kind, emotional and possesses an active, shrewd, and intuitive mind. They retreat into their hard shell exterior in order to protect their sensitive inside. Cancer is the sign of home and family life, and Cancers are happiest surrounded by the familiar and those whom they love. The Moon aspects of this sign govern emotions and intuition.
Leo: (Masculine, Fixed, Fire); July 23 to Aug 22; Symbolized by the Lion; Keyword is “I Will”; Opposite of Aquarius; Ruling planet is the Sun; Rules the back, spine, and heart. Leo is enthusiastic, expansive, creative, generous, extravagant, dogmatic, regal, brave, dominating, noble, proud, indolent, and fixed in opinion. It is the sign that governs pleasure and creativity. They look at what they can get out of life for themselves. The Sun aspects of this sign indicate light, heat, energy, vitality, and authority.
Virgo: (Feminine, Mutable, Earth); Aug 23 to Sept 22; Symbolized by the Virgin; Keyword is “I Analyze”; Opposite of Pisces; Ruling planet is Mercury; Rules the nervous system and intestines. Virgo is reserved, modest, practical, discriminating, industrious, analytical, painstaking, seeking to know and understand. It’s the sign of work, self-improvement, purity, service of oneself and one’s talents in helping others. Virgos are perfectionists who dissect facts in order to find truth and obtain all available information. The Mercury aspects of this sign indicate communication, intelligence, reason, and a high strung temperament.
Libra: (Masculine, Cardinal, Air); Sept 23 to Oct 22; Symbolized by the Scales; Keyword is “I Balance”; Opposite of Aries; Ruling planet is Venus; Rules the lower back, buttocks, and kidneys. Libra is active, artistic, balanced, easygoing, peaceable, prizes beauty and harmony, is diplomatic, polished, and very socially inclined. It’s the sign of marriage and partnership, and it’s natives function best in a union and lose their positive outlook and equilibrium when forced to be alone. It’s the sign of order and justice. The Venus aspects of this sign rule pleasure, social pursuits, art, adornment, self-indulgence, love, and luxury.
Scorpio: (Feminine, Fixed, Water); Oct 23 to Nov 21; Symbolized by the Scorpion; Keyword is “I Desire”; Opposite is Taurus; Ruling planet is Pluto; Rules the genitals. Scorpio is imaginative, passionate, emotional, subtle, persistent, intense, secretive, obstinate, and unyielding. It’s the sign of inheritance and legacies. It’s natives are given a sense of purpose and destiny and find happiness dispensing their life-force to others. The Pluto aspects of this sign rule regenerative forces, transitions, beginnings, endings, death, and destruction.
Sagittarius: (Masculine, Mutable, Fire); Nov 22 to Dec 21; Symbolized by the Archer represented as a Centaur – half man, half horse; Keyword is “I See”; Opposite is Gemini; Ruling planet is Jupiter; Rules the liver, hips, and thighs. Sagittarius is energetic, ambitious, generous, freedom-loving, direct, a seeker of challenge, and open to new ideas and exploration. Sagittarius is the sign of philosophy, higher learning, high aims, broad concepts, and a lover of outdoor activity and the chase. They are most happy discovering new ideas, exploring distant places, and not getting tied down with personal commitments. The Jupiter aspects of this sign rule good fortune, optimism, expansion, and abundance.
Capricorn: (Feminine, Cardinal, Earth); Dec 22 to Jan 19; Symbolized by the Goat; Keyword is “I Use”; Opposite is Cancer; Ruling planet is Saturn; Rules the bones, joints, and knees. Capricorn is reserved, prudent, patient, uses strategy instead of force, seeks security, is acquisitive, disciplined, determined, and quick to seize opportunity. Capricorn is the sign governing reputation, career, public life, and standing in the community. They seek honor, praise, and approval from the world at large but remain reserved in private relationships. The Saturn aspects of this sign rule obstacles, limitations, restrictions, discipline, and responsibility.
Aquarius: (Masculine, Fixed, Air); Jan 20 to Feb 18; Symbolized by the Water Bearer (a human pouring water); Keyword is “I Know”; Opposite is Leo; Ruling planet is Uranus; Rules the circulatory system, shins, and ankles. Aquarius is assertive, independent, progressive, analytical, original, inventive, and has strong dislikes and firm opinions. It is the sign of hopes, dreams, friends, and wishes. They tend to be idealistic humanitarians who are concerned with the larger issues of the world but remain personally detached in their own relationships. The Uranus aspects of this sign rule change, disruption, the unconventional, the unexpected, inventions, aerodynamics, modern science and technology.
Pisces: (Feminine, Mutable, Water); Feb 19 to March 20; Symbolized by Two Fishes connected and pulling in opposite directions; Keyword is “I Believe”; Opposite is Virgo; Ruling planet is Neptune; Rules the feet. Pisces is receptive, intuitive, emotional, imaginative, romantic, impressionable, mystical, adaptable, and very changeable. It is the sign of dreams, hidden depths, shifting emotional currents, conflicting desires, extremes of temperament, and mysticism. Pisces tend to trust their intuitions and feelings and tend to seek more spiritual values in life. The Neptune aspects of this sign rule illusion, glamour, mystery, secrets, and deception.
And now something fun to do! If you have not pulled up your own astrological chart, you can easily do that here. Once you get there, click on one of the free horoscopes (I recommend chart drawing and ascendant on the fourth page of the scroll at the top). You will need your exact day, time, and place of birth to be able to accurately pull up your astrological chart. Once you get your chart up, you can see what signs all the planets fall in on your chart as well as your ascendant (listed as AC on the chart). You will be able to read descriptions for all the planets in your chart now when reading horoscope articles and books. You can also go to my previous article here and read about each planet and then flip back to this page and read the sign listed above. You will then be able to get a sense of how the qualities of that planet are reflected in your personality by the Zodiac sign it falls in in your chart.
Sorry for the hiatus in blog posts, but December got a little crazy. Growing a business and working several jobs to support it leaves not as much time for blogging as I would like. I promise you, I will blog when I have time, and if you see me going long stretches without writing, don’t fret. I will return.
Today, I am going to start off a series of posts on basic astrology. I have had requests from people who want me to explain more about astrology and what it all means so I have decided to do that via my blog. Why do I think astrology is an important topic to study? Well I wrote some about that here. This post is going to focus on the planets, what they symbolize, and how their energies impact us here on earth.
If you have ever pulled up your astrological chart before, you will notice it will list out all the planets and what zodiac sign each planet was in when you were born. Each planet is an energy that symbolizes part of your personality and the sign it is in is how that energy is expressed in your personality. The planets also will reside in something called houses in your chart which also mean something. I will talk more about the signs of the zodiac and houses of an astrological chart in future posts, but this will help you to understand the planet part about what it means when someone says “I am a Gemini with my Mars in Leo and my Moon is in Taurus in the fourth house.”
THE BIG THREE
I am terming the following “the big three” because they are the most commonly quoted when you hear people talking about their charts, and they are the most influential and important when looking at the personality makeup of a chart. In fact, if I had to divide up the planets into their percentage of influence on our personalities, I would probably divide them up roughly like this: the Sun as 50%, the moon as 25%, the ascendant/rising sign as 15%, and the rest of the planets would comprise the other 10%. When you hear someone say “I am a double fire sign or I am a triple earth sign,” they are referring to the signs of their big three astrological influences being in multiple signs of the same element. Again I will discuss elements and the signs of the zodiac in a future post.
Sun: While not technically a planet in astronomical terms, in astrology the sun is called a planet (or a luminary) and it is the most important and powerful in our natal (or birth) charts. When you read a horoscope in a magazine or newspaper, or someone asks what is your sign, they are referring to your sun sign or the sign of the zodiac the sun was located in at your time of birth. The sun represents the fire and essence of our personalities and our individuality. It is our drive and central focus and determines how we meet our goals in life. It represents our creative life force, our will to live, and our conscious mind. If life is a play, the sun represents the role you play in this life. The house and sign the sun is located in can also hint at life purpose and the lessons being taught to you for this incarnation. The sun rules the sign of Leo.
Moon: The moon is also technically not a planet and rather a luminary, but it is the second most important point in our charts. It represents our inner self, how we feel about ourselves and the nature of our inner core. It depicts the shadow self, and how we deal with feelings and emotions. It pertains to our deepest personal needs and desires, our basic habits and reactions, and our unconscious mind. While the sun directs us outward, the moon directs us inward. It is often the part of us we keep hidden or locked away and do not reveal to others until they really get to know us. It is our inner child and inner mother. The moon rules the sign of Cancer.
Ascendant/Rising: While technically not a planet or luminary, this point is such a large makeup of one’s personality that I felt it best to place a description of it here. Anyone with a basic knowledge of their astrological chart will be talking about this point in their chart so it is useful to know what it is and why it is important. The terms ascendant and rising sign are used interchangeably, but they mean the same thing. The ascendant is the first house of your birth chart and determines where all the other houses fall. It is based on what sign was rising on the horizon in the sky at the moment you were born. This is different for everyone and is based on your exact time and location on the planet at birth which is why it is important for you to know your exact time and place of birth. This is what makes every chart unique to each individual. The ascendant is the window into your personality. It is the outward appearance you give to others when they meet you. It is the natural and personal defense mechanisms we use to adapt to our environments, and it indicates how we relate to new experiences and indicates our first impressions and our expectations of the world around us. I often tell people to read their horoscope for both their sun and their ascendant as this will give you a better picture of what the horoscope is forecasting for you.
THE PERSONAL PLANETS
The personal planets are the planets that are closest to earth and include the Sun, Moon, Mercury, Venus, and Mars. They move through every sign in the zodiac every year or two depending on the planet (every month in the case of the moon), and they have the most influence to our immediate everyday lives. Depending on the sign and house placement of these planets and how they interact with each other, these are the planets that determine how you think, communicate, act, feel, and love. They depict your sexuality, your drive, ambition, passions, aggression, likes and dislikes, looks, environmental factors, health, beauty, and style choices.
Mercury: Mercury is the planet of intelligence, communication, mental pursuits, writing, commerce, speaking, reason, memory, short trips, and day-to-day activities. This planet is known as the messenger, and its influence is shown in our very first interactions with people, from speaking to writing to listening. It tells how we approach others to exchange ideas. How we analyze, sort, and group our everyday world are depicted in our Mercury. When we are positively manifesting our mercury we are communicative, versatile, inquisitive, and curious. Negative Mercury influences include high-strung, nervous, judgmental, anal, critical, indecisive, and overly technical. Mercury rules the signs of Gemini and Virgo.
Venus: Venus is the planet of love, beauty, attraction, balance, sensuality, relationships, affection, sex appeal, artistic and creative talents, art, dress, decoration, adornment, comfort, money, and material possessions and goods. Our feminine sides are represented in Venus. Venus is key to understanding how we approach relationships and pleasure in our lives. It indicates how we spend our money and our leisure time. A strong Venus can also indicate a tendency towards diplomacy and peace making. Negative traits of Venus include self-indulgent, materialistic, vain, superficial, self-centered, narcissistic, and greedy. Venus rules the signs of Taurus and Libra.
Mars: Mars is the planet of physical energy, desire, survival instinct, sex drive, forcefulness, aggression, and action. Mars depicts the masculine in all of us. When someone is acting from a strong Mars influence, they are acting strong, direct, assertive, and forthright. On the negative side, they could also be rash, impatient, pompous, rude, egotistical, overly aggressive and violent. How we handle our anger and how competitive we are is indicated by Mars. Mars rules the sign of Aries.
THE SOCIAL PLANETS
The social planets are the planets in the middle of our solar system, Jupiter and Saturn. This is where the personal meets what is transpersonal or what is beyond us. It is where the collective or Universal oneness merges with what we experience in our everyday lives. These are considered more societal forces, and they indicate how we as individuals interact with community and society as a whole. The energies of Jupiter and Saturn are opposed to each other as you will see from the descriptions below, and throughout life we are learning to balance the lessons of Jupiter and Saturn to try not to tip too heavily towards one or the other. Jupiter takes approximately 12 years to travel through the entire zodiac and spends about a year in each sign while Saturn takes 27-30 years to transit the zodiac spending about 2.5 years in each sign.
Jupiter: Jupiter is the planet of luck, plenty, tolerance, expansion, generosity, optimism, abundance, fortune, hope, gratitude, morality, law, adventure, travel, philosophy and religion. Jupiter seeks insight through knowledge and wisdom. Jupiter is a fun planet that challenges us to get out there and experience the world and everything it has to offer. In our interactions with others, it challenges us to explore and grow. It can can manifest good will, a sense of humor, and mercy from a positive perspective. However there really is too much of a good thing, and thus negative traits from Jupiter influences include excess, blind optimism, irresponsibility, and over indulgence. Too much Jupiter can make us bankrupt, overweight, and create hoarding tendencies. Too much religion creates religious fanatics, and too much tolerance can create apathy towards immorality. Too much energy spent in outward pursuits with no rest will cause us and our bodies to get sick and exhausted. It is considered to be a lucky time when Jupiter is transiting your sun sign which happens once every 12 years. Jupiter rules the sign of Sagittarius.
Saturn: Saturn is the planet of constraint, restriction, work, rules and regulations, commitments, ethics, tests, discipline, responsibility, and patience. This taskmaster planet brings structure and meaning to the world and it shows us the limits of time, space, and matter. While this makes Saturn sound like a party pooper and buzz kill, these energies are actually necessary for our evolutionary growth. Saturn teaches us about boundaries, fear, oppression, handicap, maturity, and restriction in relationships. The Saturn cycle is often talked about in astrology and when Saturn transits a particular sign and house for 2.5 years, you will notice that it seems to constrict a certain area of your life and thus you spend those years working on the issues and themes of that sign and house. The Saturn return happens approximately every 27-30 years in life, and this is referring to Saturn returning to the same spot in the sky that it was at when you were born. The Saturn return often is accompanied by crises in many areas of your life in order to force you to evolve into your next Saturn cycle with a greater understanding of what you learned from the previous 27-30 years. In other words, Saturn will test to see if you learned all the lessons of the last Saturn cycle before you move forward, and the more off course you are from learning your lessons, the more intense and harder the tests will be. Saturn rules the sign of Capricorn.
THE TRANSPERSONAL PLANETS
The transpersonal planets are the planets at the edge of our solar system and are the only planets in our solar system not visible to the naked eye. They include Uranus, Neptune, and Pluto, and many astrologers are also looking at Chiron as well as other large asteroids in our solar system. The lessons of the transpersonal planets focus on spiritual evolution and the paths to higher consciousness available to all of us. These are higher vibrating planets which have an overarching effect that can last for generations. They are higher octaves of the personal planets whose energies can only be understood when we go beyond ourselves and become aware of our interconnectedness and oneness with all that is. Uranus takes approximately 84 years to travel through the zodiac and spends roughly seven years in each sign. Neptune and Pluto take 165 years and 250 years to transit the zodiac respectively, so their full cycles are not able to be witnessed in a human life span. Neptune spends about 14 years in each sign while Pluto spends about 22! It is easy to see how the lessons of these planets are generational in impact when they move so slowly through the zodiac.
Uranus: Uranus is the higher octave of Mercury and rules the sign of Aquarius. It is the planet of change, originality, quirkiness, surprise, shock, the revolutionary, inventiveness, intuitive awareness, and human genius in art, science, and technology. Uranus provides humans with the opportunity to become unstuck by forcing change upon us for our soul growth and lessons in life. While change is often times not fun or easy, this planet helps move us along so we don’t get stuck in a rut. Uranus promotes progressive thinking, originality, and individuality rather than tradition. Uranus challenges us to look forward with new perspectives and to awaken us to new possibilities.
Neptune: Neptune is the higher octave of Venus and rules the sign of Pisces. It is the planet of mystery, fantasy, illusion, disillusion, imagination, dreams, mysticism, occult and psychic phenomena, spirituality, idealism, drugs and alcohol, art, music, dance, poetry, and movies. Positively in may manifest as enlightenment, mercy, and compassion. Negatively it may manifest as deceit, confusion, trickery, deception, guilt, and addiction. Neptune inspires our creativity and asks us to look beyond ourselves for explanations in life. While Neptune may cloud us from being able to sense what is right and wrong or what is true or false, by doing so, it forces us to step out and test ourselves and to rely on our faith in a power higher than ourselves while simultaneously forcing us to have faith in ourselves and to take a chance on creating what we want to in our lives without fear.
Pluto: While astronomers may no longer classify Pluto as a planet, astrologers consider it to be one of great power. Pluto is the higher octave of Mars and rules the sign of Scorpio. This planet has the ability to influence and impact the masses and it will plunge to the depths in ways that no other planet will go to. Pluto is the planet of everything related to power and control, things hidden in the depths, transformation, the subconscious, dormant forces, death, rebirth, destruction, annihilation, and elimination. It rules natural disasters, world events, terrorism, mob violence, government, large organizations and structures such as churches and corporations, and the uncovering of secrets. While all of that sounds quite dreadful from a human perspective, from a soul or higher level perspective, Pluto does serve an essential function in helping to transform society and wipe away what no longer works in order to teach us lessons for our spiritual growth and to build something new. This is the planet that facilitates the proverbial phoenix rising from the ashes.
Chiron: Chiron has been called a dwarf or minor planet, an asteroid, and a comet and is located between the orbits of Saturn and Uranus. Chiron is known as “the wounded healer.” It depicts where we as individuals harbor our own wounds and our efforts we make in healing these wounds. These are wounds that are deep in our psyche which are resulting from not just this current life but many lives over the cycle of reincarnation. To heal these wounds, we must work on the issues indicated by the placement of Chiron in our chart and by overcoming our low self-worth and feelings of inadequacy surrounding these issues. Chiron can also indicate in what areas we may become good teachers, especially if we learn to overcome the lessons of Chiron in our lives.
How many times have you heard someone say something like “oh that person is an old soul, or “bless his heart, he is a young soul.” Have you ever wondered what terms like that mean? Today I want to delve into the evolution of the soul and discuss what exactly is meant by the words “soul age” and “old soul.” Different souls focus on different lessons based on what they have learned already and how evolved they are. A soul does exhibit certain characteristics as it evolves, and this can be described through soul age. A soul’s age can be characterized in much the same way as a human’s physical life. Just as a baby grows into a child and into an adult (all having specific characteristics in the physical realm), a soul will progress in age and have different lessons as it grows and expands.
Before I list out some descriptions of the qualities that make up an individual’s soul age, I do want to explain a few things. First of all, this article assumes that reincarnation is a fact, and that it exists. Whether or not you want to believe in reincarnation at this stage of your development or whether or not “science” has proven it is beside the point. Reincarnation happens. We are born again and again to continue learning lessons for our Soul’s expansion and growth. The ultimate purpose of this process is to move us to enlightenment where we give up our individuality and become one with the light and all that is. Eventually we may start the process of learning all over again by having parts of us born into another new soul, however this will not be the same soul we were in the previous cycle. We are not reincarnated as a punishment or based solely on karmic retribution. We choose to be born over and over again because our souls crave growth and expansion. We actually want to do this repeatedly, and nothing we experience is beyond what our soul can handle. It is true that Spirit does not allow us to take on more than we can handle at any given time, however many souls do get overly zealous when planning their lessons and may choose to opt out early due to the personality’s inability to cope with the magnitude of the lessons the Universe is handing the individual (this is frequently what is happening with suicide). Also we do not only reincarnate as just humans. We can and do have lives as other beings and animals. Our souls will choose whatever incarnation is best for our own soul growth. Look at our many animal friends who show up as pets? Many of these animals are actually souls we have lived lives with before (as humans or in other forms). While pets still have lessons in the construct of an animal’s body, they are often here to serve as more of a guide to us in our lives and to assist and teach us lessons about love and compassion in a different way than humans do.
Now what is meant by soul age? This type of age is not the same as human age as in “this soul has been in creation for longer than that soul.” There is no time on the other side so all of creation has all been in existence for eternity. What soul age is referring to is how many lives an individual has experienced through the process of reincarnation, or more specifically where that soul is on the process of learning and soul expansion. The truth is there are no set number of lives every soul experiences before they “graduate” to the next level of lessons. A soul has all of eternity to learn lessons and expand and grow to move on to the next level so it takes as long as it takes. Some souls expand faster than others, and some take longer to learn lessons. Often times we come back to teach or help others grow or learn lessons too, and we do this out of great love for others. Consider the individual who decides to incarnate as a child only to die in the first few months of life. This individual has came to the planet to teach great lessons about love, grief, and loss to the souls that experienced them while they were alive as well as to the ones who remain on the planet after their death. They are not going to gain a lot of their own soul growth in that lifetime, but they did come down anyway to help others to learn and grow. Often the amount of suffering a soul chooses to take on will correspond to how much growth that soul will experience during a particular lifetime. For example, a soul choosing a life with challenge after challenge and struggle after struggle will grow faster than a soul that chooses a life where everything seems perfect from a human’s perspective. We learn lessons through challenges and struggles so when we go through something seemingly terrible, that is actually when we have our greatest growth, and it is for our highest good. We are forced to find our inner strength, and these circumstances will test our faith and spirituality. What doesn’t kill us makes us stronger right?
The following is a list of ways to categorize soul evolution or age. Where do you fall on this scale?
New/Infant Soul: New or Infant souls are the souls that are just starting out on their evolution process here on the physical plane. They are in their first several lives on earth, and their incarnations are primarily dealing with the lessons of survival in the physical world. Learning how to grow and catch food and obtain fresh water, avoiding predators such as poisonous snakes, lions, bears, and crocodiles, building and maintaining shelter, going through disasters such as plagues, famines, hurricanes, volcanoes, earthquakes, and war are all lessons that new souls will take on. Morally, intellectually, and emotionally new souls come off as simple-minded, however they are simply lacking worldly experience. They do not know right from wrong and tend to be learning lessons about love, hate, fear, compassion, and remorse. New souls are not used to things like culture and group living so grasping the complexities of modern society and advanced cultures is mostly beyond them. They often do not even seek or desire employment, nor do they seek higher learning and education. They prefer to stick to learning based on a group mentality and/or via the family unit. They often need to be told the who, what, when, where, why and how of life and thus are drawn to religious and spiritual paths that allow for this. They usually adopt the religions of their parents as is, and they don’t question authority. Without this guidance, these souls often will make major blunders involving murder, rape, and the like. New souls accumulate a lot of karma due to their inability to have compassion for others. These souls may seem simple, but they are also often more connected to nature and spirit as they are more likely to remember where they come from. You will usually find new and infant souls in countries near the equator and in more tribal and indigenous populations. They can be found in more modern Western type cultures as well, but usually are seen more on the fringes of the normal population out in rural areas and in the back country. This is also an excellent time for us to explore being other species and animals on the earth plane as animals are so often dealing with more primitive lessons of survival and simply getting used to living in a body in the physical realm.
Baby/Child Soul: Having grasped basic lessons about what it is like to be on the physical plane, souls move on to examining more about what it means to be a part of a culture and mass consciousness. Baby or child souls are learning lessons about security, structure, discipline, and order. These are the individuals who seek out and desire situations where there are rigid rules, laws, regulations, and dogma to determine how society should function. They tend not to see or understand the notion of a middle ground or a grey area. The world to them is black or white, right or wrong, and moral or immoral. They understand what is right and wrong but rarely understand the motivation behind people’s actions. These souls tend to come off as intolerant, extremely conservative, traditional, orthodox, moralistic, and religiously devout. They seek out societies that provide the community with a general sense of structure and rules. These souls desire to locate in areas dominated by orthodox or fundamentalist religions (much of the Middle East), communist/fascist/extreme governments (China, North Korea, south and central America), or in small communities where the small town mayor, local sheriff, and church pastor are the most important people in the community (small town Midwest and southern USA). These are the people who come off as patriots and who worship their country, politicians, the military, doctors, principals, police officers, and religious leaders as Gods. What the powers that be say goes. They don’t question authority, and if someone violates the rules of the community, then justice and judgment ensues. Sex and sexuality are very hidden and considered “sinful” or something that must be controlled or to be guilty or shameful about. This is a time when the family unit becomes very important and structured, where families are larger and parents stay together because their society or religions tell them to. There is a strict adherence to family values. While this rigid structure may sound unappealing to a more evolved soul, the baby soul desires and needs this structure to best be able to advanced their learning. They still contain far too much fear and not enough wisdom to move beyond such structure at that time, and the structure is what helps them learn about living and existing in a culture.
Young Soul: Young souls are learning lessons about power and independence. Having now grasped order and structure, they now feel safe and secure enough to see how powerful they can become in the world. The goal now is to explore the world and see what it is all about. These are the materialistic souls who are exploring the ego and the personality. They desire money, fame, and power. These are the civilization shapers who move the world forward, and you will recognize a lot of these souls as big name politicians, celebrities, mega-church leaders, and corporate CEO’s. These are the souls who try to get everything: the most money, success, fame, or power; the best cars, boats, and motorcycles; the highest and most powerful position at work or the best degree from a prestigious university; the biggest apartments, homes, and mansions, the most toys, electronics, gadgets, and gizmos, the most extravagant meals, exotic vacations, and designer, rare, or expensive clothes, perfumes, housewares, and furniture; the most fit and attractive body. These are all desired by the young soul no matter what the cost. There is little concern for others needs and wants. For the young soul, it is a dog eat dog world, and the first person to the top wins regardless of how you get there. Motives and ethics are not considered. While it is great for a soul to break free and discover and experience their individuality, this can come at a price. Often young souls will overwork themselves to gain material success, power, and possessions. They miss out on the joys and love of families, partners, pets, and children. The added stress and lack of time to take care of themselves often winds up in disease. They end up hurting innocent people as well as the ones they love on their race towards the top. The planet itself suffers as profits become more important than anything else. Insufficient healthcare systems, crumbling infrastructures, and unequal social and economic structures take root. Planetary destruction through the dumping of toxic wastes and pollutants, the killing and over consumption of plants and animals, and by messing with the order of nature due to the arrogant thinking that humans are superior can occur with little thought or remorse. Often these souls are the most scared of death and this fear of death manifests in everything from plastic surgery to broken and costly medical systems that attempt to help everyone live forever. Often these souls have little concern for religion and spirituality as they question whether or not there is even an afterlife. This instills in them a great desire to leave their mark on the world because in their view, when life is over, that is the end. Even though this may sound empty, this can be a time of great fun trying to explore the material world in all its splendor. Young soul countries are places such as Australia, Canada, Germany, the United States (this is prominent particularly in the big cities and places such as Southern California), Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates, and Japan.
Mature Soul: After exploring the young soul phase, a soul begins to realize it desires more than just worldly possessions and materialistic desires to make it happy. What matters more is relationships and the bonds we share with others, and thus these years are for exploring all different possible ways we can interact with other people and the sort of lessons this provides. The mature soul phase sends us on a journey to explore others in a way that has not previously been done before. This is a phase when we get in touch with our emotional selves, and thus these life spans are filled with lots of drama. This can be a very difficult and frustrating time as we come to accept and move through areas of our soul that we previously ignored and delve into feelings that have been squashed or suppressed for several lifetimes. Mature souls are thoughtful, reflective, sensitive, and consider the motivations and feelings of other people. They tend to develop a deep sense of empathy and compassion for others at this time as they wholeheartedly embrace paying attention to the plights of other souls as well as looking for opportunities for more intimate relationships. This consideration for others tends to kick off a kind of self discovery period where we are searching for a deeper meaning to life. We question everything from ourselves to other people’s motives and this struggle often plays itself out in the arts. Mature souls tend to gravitate towards expression through art, philosophy, music, dance, and acting. Many of the most gifted artists and actors that we see on the earth plane are in the mature soul phase. Mature souls tend to move towards religious and spiritual paths that are more about looking inward rather than through some of the more dogmatic religious paths previously explored. Mature souls are drawn to meditation, yoga, and Buddhism quite often and may begin to delve into other individualistic metaphysical and spiritual studies. Mature souls often come off as emotionally high maintenance and are particularly liberal (they are often referred to as bleeding hearts or hippies by younger souls) constantly promoting causes and solutions to worldwide problems such as socioeconomic inequality, racism, homophobia, chauvinism, environmental destruction, animal rights, and war. Many mature souls do rise to prominence, however this is usually due to the passion, dedication, and enthusiasm they give to their causes, purposes, and artistic endeavors rather than out of a desire to gain more material and worldly goods and experiences. Mature souls tend to become more adventurous and want to explore the nuances of physical things like food, sex, art, and travel. Some examples of mature soul areas of the world include Greece, Italy, Egypt, Mexico, the UK, Russia, and the NE United States.
Old Soul: In the old soul stage, souls move beyond just exploring relationships and the interplay between themselves and others, but instead focus on the interconnectedness of all things. They come off as easy going and laid back and are competent in most everything they attempt to do (mostly due to their vast wisdom and wealth of previous life experiences). Because old souls have done it all before, they often struggle trying to find their true calling in life and ultimately settle for doing only what makes them most happy which is usually something that is undemanding and leaves them free to pursue opportunities for spiritual endeavors and soul growth (their primary focus in life). Old souls come off as gentle, calm, relatively stable, and kind hearted, often to the point of being referred to as meek or weak to the younger souls who do not understand their level of development. Like new souls, there are much fewer on the planet so often older souls come off as eccentric, bizarre, and out of the norm. Animals are drawn to old souls due to their wisdom and gentle nature. Old souls tend to prefer more alternative and holistic forms of medicine, and their spirituality often defies description as it can be a little bit of everything, yet at the same time none of the currently existing spiritual paths on the planet. Due to their interconnectedness to all that is, old souls often share a feeling of loneliness and have a longing and desire for home (the light/heaven/where we came from). Due to their wisdom, old souls have a more accurate sense of knowing what is true or not, and many times they are more in touch with their intuition and often have been blessed with other seemingly supernatural gifts (although in truth all beings possess such gifts). They often have clear yet simple writing and speaking abilities and are more easily able to communicate with large groups of people. They have little concern for social structures and cultural expectations, and do not care to be pigeonholed based on what society tells them they “need to” or “should be” doing. They are much more easily able to let go and to let be, secure in the power of their own light, understanding that they are always safe, secure, and eternal regardless of what happens to them in the physical realm. This allows old souls to become detached to the dramas of the earth plane and the mature soul stage allowing them to move forward without fear. Many old souls do not come into their old soul nature until sometime in their 30’s due to the fact that earlier in their lives they spend time reviewing lessons from previous soul ages. While older souls often can be prone to laziness due to their ability to not sweat the small stuff and see the big picture, and because they realize we are all one, safe, and protected and that there is a purpose for everything, this is often counteracted because they usually are able to more efficiently master manifestation of their physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual needs in the physical realm due to their more advanced wisdom of the laws of the Universe. The old soul level is the teaching level, and old souls focus on teaching and passing on their knowledge to the younger souls of the planet. They are here to assist and to lead by example. Because of the old soul’s vast wealth of experiences, they really strive for their lives to remain free of judgment, and they are constantly screening their actions, thoughts, and emotions for signs of judgment so that they can correct it. Another main old soul focus is working on mastering self love and self esteem and many of their challenges direct them to work on this. Gender and sexuality become more fluid, and older souls will spend many lives exploring the nuances of this by alternating sexes and sexualities in lives as well as spending lives in their least preferred gender. Finally, old souls are working on resolving a lot of old karma, much of which was racked up when they were a younger soul learning major life lessons. Ultimately, they are working towards moving out of reincarnating to the physical realm so they must resolve all old karma before their journeys can be complete. Because of this, old souls seemingly go though a lot of trials and tribulations that would be difficult for a younger soul to withstand. Older souls are often more able to handle this, and these challenges are looked on as tests for their spiritual growth and faith. Old souls are found all over the planet but in higher concentrations in places such as the Scandinavian countries, the Netherlands, some parts of India, Burma, New Zealand, Switzerland, and parts of the USA (namely the Pacific NW and areas in the SW like Sedona, Santa Fe, and Boulder). Many old souls like to say “this is my last life on earth, and then I don’t have to come back!” In truth, an old soul will never stop coming back until they can learn to love and cherish their experiences on earth.
Transcendental and Infinite Souls: Transcendental souls are the souls who have completed the cycle of reincarnation on the earth plane. They have evolved enough that they do not need or desire to come to earth anymore to learn lessons. They have finished the lessons and have graduated and moved on to higher realms of teaching and learning. They also have resolved their karma and do not need to return due to karmic debts. These souls do sometimes on the very rare occasion come back to earth mostly to be teachers. I believe every soul will come back to do this at least once. Infinite souls are the souls that are evolved so highly that they are a full representation of the light and all that there is. These souls are often known as ascended masters and include such people as Jesus Christ, Buddha, Lao Tsu, and Krishna. They are infused with so much light that the human body can barely contain it all. They have seemingly superhuman powers as well as the ability for supernatural healing. They come to the earth plane to show us what it looks like to evolve to the state of enlightenment. They bring great wisdom showing us how to live our lives on this planet and how to treat others, ourselves, and the planet as a whole. These are the people that religions are made from.
Many times souls who are in lifetimes where they are transitioning between levels will exhibit characteristics in between two categories. It is entirely possible that more than one of these categories may fit you, and this could mean you are moving between levels. Evolution is a slow process, and there are no set rules as to what type of soul you are. The levels blend into each other slowly and you may be concurrently learning lessons from two of the ages at the same time. As your soul ages, it will reexamine many of the previous levels’ lessons in every incarnation as well. In general, the older the soul, the later in life they begin to really exhibit the tendencies of their true soul age. The earlier years in life are spent reviewing the lessons of other soul ages in addition to beginning on your journey of your current soul lessons. It is also very important to note that there is no level that is better than any other level! I repeat…no level is more desired or more special than any other level. All souls have been through or will go through all levels, and all levels are necessary for soul growth, evolution, and expansion. In the same way that humans don’t say the elderly are better and more special than the kids and vice versa, an old soul is not better than a baby soul. Humans also tend to incarnate in clumps and groups. There are souls from each category in places all over the planet; however, as listed, there are some areas where the soul age skews more towards a certain demographic. At this stage of Earth’s development, the overall soul age of mass consciousness aligns close to a bell curve. The majority of the planet’s population (middle of the bell curve) falls in the young soul category currently, with less souls in mature and child soul, and still far less souls in the old and infant soul categories. I believe that as humanity progresses forward in the future, the bell curve will move closer towards the mature soul being the most dominant type on the planet with a significant increase in old souls. Many countries have transitioned to more mature soul countries in recent years to signify this movement. As the earth evolves and moves forward in its own evolution, new and child souls will incarnate less frequently here as there will be better more appropriate learning planets that are newer in creation for the “new soul” experience to occur on.
Spooky month continues with a post to help demystify the thing that humans fear most: Death. I took a long time on this one because this is a lot of information, and I pondered significantly about what I wanted to say about this. This information is important because when we contain fear surrounding something so seemingly unknown and mystical as what happens before, during, and after we die, we can have all sorts of problems. Just some off of the top of my head include not living the lives we want to and thus end up having regrets, having slow lingering deaths, becoming trapped in the spirit realm as a ghost after we die, and more intense grief, loss, hopelessness, anger, depression, and sadness regarding your own demise or a loved one’s.
I hate to be the one to break this to you, but nobody will get out of this life alive. Yes not even you dear reader! Why be scared of something that is going to happen regardless of whether you want it to or not? Burying one’s head in the sand and pretending it is not going to happen will only make you ill prepared when it inevitably does strike you or your loved ones. Our society is so fixed on trying to pretend death does not happen when in reality, death is all around us. We experience it every autumn when the leaves fall off the trees, and all the plants of spring and summer die away. It is a necessary part of the cycle of life and death and without death, we do not get the transformation that comes with it. We would also not get to be reborn like the phoenix rising from the ashes.
Our society sweeps death under the carpet, and this starts early on and continues throughout our lives. This can be seen in everything from plastic surgery to make us look younger to the way we treat our senior populations. Once upon a time on this planet, our elders were thought of as wise. They contained knowledge, and they helped pass that knowledge on to their children and their children’s children. Our communities looked out for our elders when they needed caring. Yet now we throw them in nursing homes and hope that the government will somehow have enough funds to take care of them. Is this anyway to treat the people who raised us, and who contain valuable knowledge and wisdom about life and our history which can be used for our growth and well-being? I digress… People are so scared about talking about the inevitable that they often don’t even make plans until it is too late. Do you have a living will and durable power of attorney? Do you and your loved ones know what your final wishes are for your body and funeral or is this something you will just “deal with later when you have time.” The truth is nobody knows how long we have on this planet, and every day here could be your last. One can choose to view every day as a gift or as a nightmare (and I sometimes feel both ways about it!), but either way it will come to an end at some point. Even our death rituals are steeped in irrational and insane fear. My roommate was just telling me a story about how when she was a Peace Corps volunteer in Ukraine, she showed the movie Drop Dead Gorgeous to people over there. They couldn’t really understand the movie because it was in English so the humor went over their heads, however they did laugh hysterically watching dead bodies be painted with makeup (which of course was not supposed to be funny!). We paint our bodies and embalm them in order to preserve them for longer (almost as a way of pretending death did not happen). Our loved ones are not even in the bodies anymore because they are just bio matter suits that the spirit has discarded. We are not our bodies. We are eternal souls; spirits temporarily inhabiting the bodies in order to have life experiences for our lessons and spiritual growth. The meaning and purpose of life is not too hard to grasp once one understands this concept. Our society does not even like to talk about death or allow us to express our feelings and thoughts around death. We are not allowed to grieve losses, show emotion, or cry (bottling this up causes disease by the way). Babies are taught not to show emotion from day 1 when we continuously tell our babies to hush and be quiet and rock them so they stop crying. This sets the tone that emotions are bad from day one, and we carry this through our lives and particularly hold on to this belief when dealing with issues surrounding death.
Another reason not to fear death is that most likely you have done it before! Unless you are a brand new soul (and there aren’t a ton out there, but they do exist), most likely you have done the whole death thing many, many, many times before. Reincarnation is not just a “belief” of some religions, it is a fact whether science has proven it or not yet. Our souls send us here over and over again to learn lessons for our spiritual growth. Even major Western religions such as Christianity spoke of reincarnation until churches began removing said passages from the bible many centuries ago. The leaders of the churches did not want the common folk to have this knowledge so they disposed of it or “retranslated” it to mean something else (a common practice in many ancient holy books).
The hardest thing to deal with regarding death is probably loss and change. That is something we all struggle with. When someone dies it feels like we will never see them again, and we mourn what we used to have in regards to that relationship with that individual. One will go through a wide variety of thoughts and feelings when they find out someone is going to die and all are valid. It is normal and healthy to go through this process. Some of our greatest lessons in life revolve around birth and death. Although this will sound trite, it is the only piece of advice I can offer in regards to going through loss. Find your inner spirituality. Sense in to the greater purpose of life and know that that individual that passed will always be with you. You can still talk to them, and they will hear. And you will see them again. I know that is all easier said than done, and this is where I think having a spiritual advisor, healer, therapist, or even group counseling can help. Seek help and comfort from friends and loved ones and other people who understand what you are going through. Also have comfort in knowing that that individual’s lessons were learned for that incarnation, and it was time for them to move on. We choose our entrances and our exits from this planet (even if not consciously). Nobody ever leaves this planet without choosing to leave. This needs to be looked at from a soul perspective rather than from the personality’s perspective because obviously most individuals do not choose to or want to die. However, the soul knows when an individual’s time is up, and nothing you can do or say can stop that process for you or someone else. It is not your fault if you can’t save yourself or someone else. It is simply your or someone else’s time. You or they are graduating and moving on to the next class. Don’t fear not seeing the friends and family you are leaving behind because you will quickly realize after you are dead that you will be together again and can check in on them whenever you like. Even something as horrific as murder is actually a contract agreed upon by both souls involved so that they can both learn lessons for their spiritual growth. The victim has given the gift of the lesson to the murder by sacrificing their life. The murder will learn hopefully that taking a life is wrong at the end of their life, and their spirit will grow and hopefully not do that again in another life. And what about suicide? Well we do have the free will to opt out whenever we want, but should we decide to opt out before our contract is up, we will have to repeat that life over again with the same lessons in the future. Is it really worth it to opt out and have to experience all that misery again?
Now on to the title of this post…Death is a very individual process and can vary for each individual; however I do have some general themes that I can lay out about what happens when we die.
If I am going to be honest the thing that scares me the most about death is the physical pain of dying. Who wants to feel that?! The good news is that Spirit will usually ease us into death by having us begin to feel the peace and love of Source while our bodies disintegrate especially in slow deaths. The veil between the living and the dead lifts. We may begin to see our spirit guides who were there with us through our entire lives. We may also see deceased loved ones, angels, ascended masters such as Jesus, or we may just begin to see Source (this is “the Light” so often talked about and usually it appears at the end of a long tunnel). Dying violently such as in a big explosion or a plane crash? No worries! You will pop out of your body before you even feel anything. Either way you die (slow or quick), you do pop out of your body. Many times people find themselves looking down at their bodies from up above. It can be a bizarre experience to find yourself looking at your beat up corpse while paramedics are working on what used to be you and seeing your loved ones hysterical when you are completely fine. Many near death experiencers report thinking “what is all the fuss about?” From most near-death experiences I have read, people love being dead! It feels way better than being stuck in a clunky and limited body. We no longer have our earthly burdens, and people just feel a general sense of peace. There is no time and space on the other side, which is hard to grasp for us earthly folk, but it is true. Going to the light is ultimately what you want to do when you notice you are out of your body and truly deceased. I highly suggest just doing that regardless of what has happened in your life or what has caused your death. Some people will pop out directly into another dimension (often considered heaven or hell by Western standards), and bypass this whole process.
What happens when we go to the light? The light is Source or God. It is where we come from. It can also be termed heaven. It is love, and the closer you get to it, the faster your vibrations raise, and the more love you feel. The light is so intense in its core that souls cannot even get to its center or they would blow up from the power of it all. When we are in the light, we see friends and family members we have come into contact with along our journeys. We have soul families up there, and we reunite with our soul friends. There are cities of light. Fields and rivers and animals all reside there as well, and the colors and sounds our senses encounter are far more vivid and wonderful than anything we can ever experience on earth. Our pasts, presents, and futures and all the answers to all the questions that you have ever wanted to know are there. Our spiritual advisors meet with us when we arrive, and we are usually greeted in a sort of homecoming ceremony. We have a life review where we get to experience everything that happened in our lives all over again; the good, the bad, the ugly. Although this seems like it would take forever, there is no time and space there so this is not as daunting as it sounds. Thanks to western religions, people are so scared of judgment that they may be scared to even go to the light. Don’t be afraid of judgment…there is only love here. The cosmic irony is that we end up judging ourselves. We review our lives, and feel our thoughts, feelings, and actions and feel other people’s thoughts, feelings, and actions. We will feel what it felt like for someone when we did something terrible to someone else, and we will feel what it felt like for someone else when we did something great for them. We will understand where everyone was coming from in our lives, and all the lessons we were attempting to learn in that life. We will grade ourselves on our last incarnation and then start planning for the next incarnation to determine what we want to work on in the next life. We may decide to stick around in the light for awhile to recover from the last incarnation, but ultimately we come back because we desire more lessons and more soul growth. Each time we come back we learn more, and our soul expands more. We may eventually decide to be a guide for someone else, or we may move on to be a teacher as our soul expands. Eventually our Souls are so expanded and so filled with love that we move to the center of the light to give up our individuality to become a part of it for eternity. New souls are continuously created and parts of the old you may end up in a brand new soul that is going out to start the process of reincarnation and soul growth all over again.
Now what about that hell place? Well hell realms exist, and dark entities and demons do reside there. Do we go there as a punishment for the lives we have lived or because we didn’t believe in this religion or that religion? No! The vast majority of people that end up here do so because they have created it for themselves in the afterlife. Also like attracts like when referring to energy so if the energy of something is dark, it will go someplace dark to match the vibration of it. If it is light it will go someplace light. If you believe you are going to go to a hell, then you will go to a hell. I have encountered many near-death experiences where people have been tormented by dark entities and other negative spirits for what seems like eternity until they were brought out of it by either the light/Source, or they are brought back to life on the earth. This place is not necessarily what you might expect, and often times is a self-imposed hell out in the void, or the blackness away from the light. Here people torment themselves over everything that did not go as planned in their lives or that they did wrong. They may stew in their negativity for as long as they want. Most often times they will feel all the negative emotions…fear, sadness, anger, jealousy, hate, etc. They will reside in this personal hell until something snaps them out of it, because they are rescued by a light being, or they are able to find the light in themselves through love. Yes people can and do get out of hell realms, and one is not stuck there forever. Is there a supreme dark entity named Satan? I am not sure, but no near-death experience I have ever come across has mentioned a Satan. I think Satan might just be a synonym for the Dark.
Another possibility after death is to become a ghost. What is a ghost? A ghost is a spirit who has not crossed over and gone to the light to have a life review and move forward in their soul’s progression. What causes a ghost? There are many scenarios that can cause a ghost situation to happen. A person may die a traumatic and unexpected death such as in murder. The spirit may not know they are dead if it happens too fast, and the person will wander around in that state until it wakes up. If they are unable to process their death they may be stuck in a loop re-experiencing their death over and over again. Ghosts also can be formed when a spirit is unable to let go and move forward into the light for any given reason. If someone is seeking justice or revenge for what happened to them or to have control over the living or other spirits, they may stick around. If they are unable to let go of their loved ones, possessions, houses, careers, etc. the same thing can happen. Some people get lost on their way to the light or can’t find Source. All you have to do in that case is ask for assistance from guides, angels, deceased loved one’s or Source itself, and you will find it. In most near-death experiences I have read, people usually just look up and see it. Finally, ghosts will remain ghosts out of fear. They are too scared to go to the light because they are afraid of judgment and being sent to hell (thank you religious fanatics for that one). Source is love and light, and all you will feel when you go there is a love stronger than anything you can begin to imagine…not judgment.
Finally, I want to mention those people who don’t believe in anything; the ones who believe after you die that is it, and that there is nothing else. Those people usually end up in the void in between dimensions mentioned earlier. There they will reside in complete blackness until someone is able to get through to them that they still exist. Usually it takes another light worker or loved one to snap them out of this. In my opinion, this is one of the most harmful beliefs an individual can hold in life because getting these people to wake up when they believe there is nothing is incredibly difficult and can take an extremely long time. Find your inner spirituality before you die so you can avoid this.
If there is one last piece of advice I can give about dealing with death, find out as much as you can about it before you actually die. The more you know, the better prepared you can be. Knowing how to avoid becoming a ghost or stuck in the void or a hell realm will help you progress faster in the afterlife. This way you can move on to the next great journey for more lessons sooner.
When you are dead you feel more alive than when you were alive. and your entire life you just lived will seem like just a dream. Going to the light/Source and feeling all that love is really going home so why postpone it any longer? Release the fear!
As a Reiki practitioner, I am often called upon to mention ways to keep the physical apparatus operating at its most efficient capacity. I also have managed to drop a ton of weight myself recently so I would like to lay out what I have been attempting to do. I still hope to drop some more pounds, but I feel so much better about myself now that I am taking better care of myself. Losing weight is one of the hardest things I have ever done. Just when you think you have a grasp on it, the next thing you know, you have fallen off the wagon again. It is true what they say about our bodies being temples. Our spirits are sparks of the divine. They come from the light of Source to temporarily live in these bodies of matter which come from the earth until we shed and return or physical suits back to the earth at our deaths. Having our bodies be healthy and fit allows our spirits to be better able to complete the tasks and lessons we came to this planet to complete. It also makes us happier and allows us to live longer more productive lives. The following is a list of things I have learned and attempted to put into practice to try and allow my body to be healthier and more fit.
1. Eat fruits and vegetables! I can’t count how many people I know who don’t eat fruits and vegetables, and quite honestly, I don’t know how they are still alive. Believe it or not I have actually come into contact with a person before who told me she has never even eaten fruit before. She just assumes she won’t like it so she has never tried it. REALLY?!?!?! My energy system feels so wonky if I don’t at least have some sort of fruits and vegetables with every meal. Eat as many fruits and vegetables as you can in one day, really there is no such thing as too many. These contain the highest amount of vitamins and nutrients that we can get in food, are high in fiber and also low in calories. Fruits and vegetables are also the highest vibrating forms of energy we can consume and the benefits of eating them are almost too numerous to mention. Want to be even healthier? Eat as many of them raw as possible to gain the maximum benefit. Cooking destroys the vibration energetically (especially when using a microwave). Also try to eat from as many different colors of the rainbow as possible. Eating a salad with dinner is an easy way to get your vegetables in and using a variety of rainbow colored vegetables makes the salad prettier! Try to avoid canned varieties of fruits and vegetables because this depletes the nutrient levels and really they don’t taste as good. I have added in morning green smoothies. Blend half greens and half fruit of your choice and create amazing tasting smoothies. Shove extra vegetables in main dishes and side dishes. It is so easy to add things like spinach and kale into your recipes without messing them up. Also we are so carb and protein focused with our meals, but why not try making meals where vegetables are the star of the plate instead of the steak or the pasta? Don’t like how they taste…well jazz it up with low fat sauces, seasonings, hummus, salsa, or dressings. Anything to get it in your body is great. I guarantee that the more you eat them the better they will taste, and you will actually crave them once you reprogram your body to be used to them.
2. Eat organic, natural, non-GMO foods, and limit corn, soy, and gluten. Our bodies want to consume what mother nature and Source have provided for us on this planet. Humans have decided to play God and create freak foods which our bodies weren’t designed to process. GMO foods wreak havoc on our bodies and energy systems and all the toxins and chemicals used in our food production system cause disease and toxicity. Our poor livers are taxed enough without having to worry about removing pesticides from our body. It is no wonder that as unnatural foods and GMO’s have increased, more and more humans and animals are developing intolerances to things like gluten, corn, and soy (In fact as good practice towards health and wellness, I would pretty much try to eliminate corn, soy, and gluten if possible). This is a daily struggle for me because corn, soy, and gluten are in freaking everything. Spirit is pretty clear about this issue though and brings it up constantly.
3. Limit processed food, and try cooking and eating with whole foods. Processed food is low vibrating. The way food is processed strips the food of its nutritional value and lowers the vibration of the food. Most processed foods also have tons of extra calories shoved in them (usually in the form of GMO infested corn and soy products, or excessive sugars and unhealthy trans fats). They are also chock full of salt, preservatives, and other chemicals. You are also spending a ton of extra money on packaging (which is a strain on the environment as we over-consume our resources on this planet). Cooking your own food with whole foods can be time consuming, but there is something very grounding about preparing a meal. Plus you have the satisfaction of knowing exactly how your food was prepared and what all is in the meal you are about to consume.
4. Eliminate dairy. I know this is going to be very unpopular, but dairy is one of the worst things you can put in your body. Cheese, yogurt, sour cream, butter, milk, crème, ice cream, etc…all of it is actually the lowest vibrating thing you can put in your mouth. Not only is dairy low vibrating sludge, it also is cram packed with puss and blood from the animals that are used to produce it. The animals are mostly kept in inhumane conditions forced to continuously pump out milk above what they would naturally and are given a crap ton of antibiotics in order to keep them and their milk “healthy.” This strain causes an abnormal amount of puss and blood to come out in their udders and into the milk products you eat in the store. The USDA actually has a limit on how much puss and blood are allowed, but every time we approach the limit due to more over production, they simply raise the limit. Don’t go for the chocolate or strawberry milk either because milk that is particularly unappealing to look at and lower quality is made into flavored milk in order to hide the imperfections. I continuously get the “do not eat dairy” message from guides for people, and it happens so often it is mind blowing. I literally got that message for a client in the second session I did, and it hasn’t stopped since. Getting people to stop consuming dairy is like getting people to stop doing heroin. A recent study came out which showed that 42% of college students would rather give up oral sex than cheese. That goes to show how powerfully addictive milk products are! The hormones in dairy cause a euphoric affect that keeps us coming back for more which makes it so addictive. The hormones are useful for keeping a child or baby animal coming back for more milk, but it is pretty useless for adults. Milk from other animals was meant for the nutritional needs of those animals, not for humans. We are the only animals in nature that consume the milk of other animals outside of our own species, and we are the only animal to continue eating it outside of infancy. Humans started consuming milk out of necessity centuries ago because they were starving, and it didn’t make sense to eat the cow when they could keep getting calories from the milk. This may have made sense back then but now not so much. About 75% of the human population is actually lactose intolerant so you are literally going against what nature wants for your body by consuming milk products. Dairy contains high amounts of saturated fat which is bad for your heart, aggravates irritable bowl syndrome, is linked to prostate cancer, and contributes to problems such as allergies, sinus problems, ear infections, excessive mucus, chronic constipation, anemia in children, and type 1 diabetes. Here is a great article on this http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-mark-hyman/dairy-free-dairy-6-reason_b_558876.html. Don’t fall for the marketing either. “But we need calcium!” Eat fruits and vegetables. You can get most vitamins and minerals needed through those sources. “But we need probiotics!” Take probiotics instead of eating yogurt. I could go on and on about dairy, but will move on. Just say no!
5. Eat local foods that are in season when possible. Local foods are closer to the source and were most recently alive. This means they have a higher vibration than foods that were shipped halfway across the world and which spent significant time in a freezer. You are also supporting local farms rather than big corp food and cutting down on waste and environmental damage caused by the shipping process. Farmers markets and local CSAs are a great way to explore local foods. Even better, try growing some of your own food in a garden. This is another great way to get fresh produce, and it is also very grounding to garden. Eating seasonally keeps us in synch with the cycles of nature (which is largely lost on humans) and prevents environmental degradation. Nature did not design for us to be eating strawberries from Chile in December and cucumbers from Mexico in February. Fresh seasonal and local foods are always going to be healthier and higher vibrating.
6. Eat high quality and certified humane meat and eggs. If you are going to eat meat and eggs as your source of protein, it is important to choose high quality meat and eggs. The vast majority of the meat and egg industry is highly corrupt. Animals are treated inhumanely living in deplorable conditions and many times are not allowed to roam free. They are fed food that is not natural for them and are pumped full of hormones and antibiotics. I have read reports of animals that are actually fed candy to fatten them up. You are what you eat, and there is no exception when it comes to animals. Eating animals raised in that environment will be putting all that toxic garbage into your own body. Many times the animals are not killed humanely, and as a compassionate and caring human, do you want to support an industry that does that to poor creatures? Animals have souls too, and we in fact can reincarnate as animals. Think of them as people because many times they have lived lives as humans or they will be people in future lives. All that pain and suffering holds a charge in the meat and eggs as well so you are literally putting that mental and emotional trauma into your energy system by consuming bad meat and eggs. Really low quality meat doesn’t even look like meat anymore. Has anyone seen that meat like product with the weird grill marks known as chicken breast that Subway serves? What is that!?
7. Cut down on the salt. We eat way too much sodium! Too much sodium causes us to have high blood pressure, heart disease, and strokes. I personally get extremely bloated if I eat too much of it, and it makes us have to drink even more water than we need to in a day to flush it out of our system. Iodized salt is particularly bad so opt for sea salt when possible. There are many other foods out there to get our normal amounts of iodine into our bodies (fish, seafood, seaweed, and potatoes for instance). Too much iodine causes problems with the thyroid and the vast majority of Americans already get too much in their diet anyway since almost all salt put into processed food (as well as normal table salt used in restaurants) is iodized.
8. Cut down on sugar, and eat real sugar when you eat it. Like salt, Americans eat far too much sugar. Sugar is shoved in everything, but the biggest culprit is processed food where it usually takes the form of high fructose corn syrup. The evils of high fructose corn syrup are too numerous to mention but google it if you are curious. Excess sugar consumption causes weight gain, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, cancer, tooth decay, and a weakened immune system. Another way we really down the sugar is through beverages. Sodas and juices have so much added sugar in them. A far better option would be to make your own fresh juice and/or just drink water. Fake sugar is not a way to prevent the problems associated with sugar; in fact a lot of studies are finding that fake sugar actually screws up your body more than eating regular sugar and can cause the same problems as normal sugar. Plus it tastes like a nasty chemical, and they literally say on the packages how the products have been known to cause cancer in lab animals. Do we really want to put that crap in our bodies? My general philosophy on most things in life is why “fix” what the Universe/mother nature already created in the first place. It is really egotistical and ignorant of humans to think they can improve upon what nature did for us already.
9. Limit fried food intake, and use healthy oils. Fried food contains too much fat. It is pretty simple. Eat too much and out goes the belly, and the arteries get clogged. Not only that, but fried food often uses oils that are highly unhealthy and full of trans fats. Trans fats help contribute to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer, and the list goes on and on. Avoid any oils that say hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated (and these are the types of oils often used in processed foods so read those labels). I prefer extra virgin olive oil and coconut oil for my cooking as these are oils Spirit has given me the green light on and they are easy to find and taste good.
10. Get 7-10 hours of sleep every night. In our go go go fast paced modern society, one of the first things to get cut when our lives become too busy is sleep. Most of mass consciousness is vastly sleep deprived. The human body really requires optimal sleep to be able to function properly. Sleeping allows your body to recharge and repair itself. This greatly helps the immune system to stave off disease, and tired people get sick way more often. It will also give you energy to last through your day, and that caffeine fix becomes unnecessary if you are already getting enough sleep. Many important metaphysical processes also go on while sleeping. This is where our brains synthesize and store away the events from the day, when we have dreams that can deliver us important messages from our soul, guides, and loved ones on the other side, and our dreams can also tell us information about our past lives as well as hints about our future. It is when we can connect with realms other than the place we presently have incarnated to. I have a policy that I never set my alarm, thus ensuring I get enough sleep every night. I prefer to wake up naturally rather than have my day ruined by a noisy and obnoxious alarm clock. This forces me to go to bed early enough when I have to be up by a certain time in order to be able to get enough sleep and wake up in a timely manner.
11. Drink your water, and filter the crap out of it. Drinking the good old 8 glasses of water a day is so critically important for optimal physical health. Staying hydrated helps flush out the toxins in your body and will help all body parts to function most efficiently. I try and drink a pint glass of water before every meal and then several more throughout the day. Staying hydrated also helps you feel full longer so you are less likely to snack on extra calories when you don’t need to. An easy way to determine if you are drinking enough water is to monitor the color of your urine (gross but true). The clearer it is, the closer you are to optimum hydration. Another problem with our society is water quality and pollution. Due to our sewage controls, another unfortunate side affect has started to occur with our water supplies. Not only does our water contain pollutants from industries and big corporations as well as farm runoff, but we also have trace amounts of all sorts of chemicals that have been ingested by humans that have now found their way into the water system. This includes pharmaceuticals like meds for cancer, HIV, heart disease, anti depressants, etc. Bottled water is no way to remove this as most bottled water actually contains chemicals from the bottles themselves, and most bottled water is simply tap water from some local community which is bottled and sold like it is from some exotic location. Plus the bottles themselves are horribly polluting to the environment. Then there is the issue of fluoridation. Fluoride is a toxic industrial waste and chemical (not an essential nutrient) which really should not be ingested by humans. I am still not sold on the dental properties, but people can get fluoride from mouthwashes and dentist offices for topical use (not internal use!) if people still want to try it. There is no need to ingest it yourself. The human body does not need fluoride to function, and teeth can be brushed and flossed. Tooth decay will go down simply by eating healthier foods. Fluoride causes great harm to the energy system and particularly messes with the pineal gland, the third eye chakra and our intuition. The best way to get clean water for drinking and cooking is to buy a reverse osmosis water filter, and this can also help to get the fluoride out of the water that government so kindly puts in without our permission. This will get your water the cleanest and they are relatively cheap.
12. EXERCISE!!! This is really one of the most critical components I have found towards my success in weight loss. Humans should get physical activity every day, and our bodies were made for it. Our bodies were not meant to sit in cubicles all day. Find some activity you like. Exercise doesn’t have to be a drag. Just get creative and get your body moving. Try as many different types of exercise as you can. The more you do it, the easier it gets and the more you become addicted to the benefits. I find variety is the spice of life when it comes to exercise, and you are more likely to stick to it if you are changing things up often. It is also critical to not just lift weights or just do cardio. Our bodies need strength training and flexibility for our muscles and bones and also cardio for our heart, circulation, digestion, brain, and lungs. I have employed as many tactics as possible to get extra activity in my life. Go on walk breaks while working. Park far away from buildings or in the back of the parking lot to force more walking. Opt to walk or bike instead of driving. Take stairs instead of elevators and escalators. Every little thing you do helps. Why exercise? It promotes weight loss, removes and burns off toxins, combats health conditions and diseases, lowers cholesterol and blood pressure, increases your metabolism so you can eat more, boosts your energy so you are less tired, promotes better sleep, and helps you feel happier through the release of endorphins and by giving you a self esteem boost through having a more fit body. Exercise can improve your sex life, and it can actually be fun if you choose something you enjoy. I have found that 30 min of activity a day works well at keeping you fit. For me to lose weight though, I had to up it to 1-2 hours 5-6 days a week. Obviously if one does not change their eating habits even that might not do the trick.
13. Minimize or eliminate alcohol, drugs, caffeine, and smoking. We all know these things are bad so I am not going to say much here. These things lower our vibrations, make us feel crappy, and cause great damage to our physical bodies and energy systems. Booze contains a lot of extra calories, and we all know that marijuana makes us get the munchies. Get help if you need it, and energy work from a Reiki practitioner can help with this.
Obviously making major changes in your health routines can be a daunting task, especially when there is so much out there to try and derail you on your path towards health and wellness. The best way to begin is to start making changes slowly. Changing everything you want to change all at once can be too difficult and increases the likelihood of failure. Another note…as you expand your energy, enlighten yourself, and increase your vibrations and become healthier, the more you will notice the effects of treating your body poorly. If I go on a gluten and dairy pizza binge now, I am not kidding I pay for it! My digestive system lets me know what I have done, and I will also bloat up 7-10 lbs overnight, I kid you not. Also it helps to look at the changes as lifestyle changes. They aren’t fads or diets. It will guarantee failure if you are taking the view that you only need to change something temporarily. The goal is a lifetime of health and wellness, not a temporary quick fix. And remember if something sounds too good to be true, it probably is!
As an intuitive I often hear from people wanting to know what they should do in their lives. People want to know where they are heading on their path, and if they are making the right decisions. They then become frustrated when I refuse to give them this information. Sometimes the information is not clear to me so it would be imprudent to give the information when I am not certain the info is correct. Many times the question being asked is not the point or focus of a healing session (the Universe and Spirit has its own priorities of what needs to come up in a healing session). Most often though, I choose not to give this info because it would be unethical of me and here is why. When we are born onto this planet, we are given a gift that is so powerful it really is the guiding force behind most of our learning that takes place while on this plane. That gift is called free will. By telling a person what they “should” do or “shouldn’t” do, I would be taking away that gift from the individual and also could potentially alter the course of the future by stating something. That is a lot of karma that I don’t want to step into!
What is free will? Free will is the power of acting without the constraint of necessity or fate; the ability to act at one’s own discretion. It is this power we are given when we come here to be able to choose the lives we want for ourselves and the paths that our lives will take. Why are we given this power? It is this power that allows us to learn our lessons in this school called earth. By deciding what we want in life, we learn more about ourselves and others, and as a result, our souls expand. Free will can easily be compared to a child learning about the physical world. For instance, when a toddler touches a hot stove top, it learns not to touch hot things or it gets burned. On a much broader scale, this is what the gift of free will is doing for our souls. As an example, a person may decide to be cruel to everyone they encounter in their entire life, caring about no one but themselves and then when they die, they have their life review and learn what they did to everyone and how that felt for those individuals they were terrible to. The soul learns that it does not want to be mean to other people and hopefully will take that lesson with them into their next incarnation (apparently many people take several lives to learn this lesson!). Because of this gift of free will, the future is not set in stone. Any decision that any individual or group makes can alter the course of the future at any given time. This is the primary reason why any intuitive or psychic medium cannot be accurate 100% of the time. There are too many factors involved and too many decisions that can change the outcome. Sometimes events can be completely canceled. Sometimes the timelines themselves can alter so something that was imminent may be pushed out ten years or more. If any intuitive tells you what you should or shouldn’t do, or tells you what definitely is or isn’t going to happen to another individual or yourself, and/or gives a set date or guaranteed sequence of events, I would advise you to run as far away from that person as possible! They are most likely not operating with a good moral compass, are filled with ego, and might not even be talking to sources from the light (AKA they might be talking to auricles and other negative entities…this will get a blog post of its own at a future date).
How do you explain bad things that happen and when events seemingly occur that are outside of an individual’s control? Do we have absolute free will? This requires some more explanation. First of all, not all choices for what happens in life are made on a conscious level. We must look at what happens from a soul perspective. Before we are born into this life, we meet with spiritual advisors on the other side to determine the lessons we want to learn in our next incarnation. We then create a blueprint for what our next life will look like. Our life purposes and goals (yes we have many!) are determined, and we choose many of the details of the incarnation we are about to embark on. We choose what we look like, our parents, potential friends, family members, careers, our personalities, our strengths and weaknesses, likes and dislikes, health concerns, the circumstances surrounding our births and deaths, opting out points (places where we can potentially die and come back home to the light), etc. – all this is decided on when we meet with our advisors and all is chosen to give us the maximum potential for growth spiritually that we wish to achieve in that life. We choose our spiritual guides who remain with us our entire lives (although 99.9% of people don’t ever awaken enough to realize their guides are there with them 100% of the time ready to assist when called upon by the individual attempting a life). We also choose what we would like to take on in order for us to help others achieve their spiritual growth. From a soul perspective nothing can happen without a contract so contracts are made with appropriate souls (the contracts are made at a soul level so it doesn’t matter if the individuals are already incarnated on the planet) who will have an important impact in our upcoming lives and those lessons are set and off we go to be born as a new little baby onto planet earth or wherever you decided to incarnate.
But wouldn’t this mean there is no free will? No. This is a blueprint. Decisions being made while the individual is living on the planet can alter the course or timing of the blueprint and contracts made at any given time. So why have I brought all this up? Many times when it seems like something has happened that an individual did not choose, they did actually choose it from a soul perspective. It was something that was decided before they were even born as a life event in their current life for their learning purposes. Souls can change plans without the individual personalities living the current life even knowing. For instance, say two people get in a car accident. Did the two individuals who hit each other purposely choose that? Most likely not. But their souls did choose for that accident to happen because both souls recognized it as a learning opportunity for both souls to undertake for their spiritual growth and expansion. Their souls had a contract with each other to allow that car crash to happen. Many times souls will undertake an early death to provide the opportunity for those left behind to have further lessons for growth. This is why some souls even agree to go down to be babies or children only to leave the earth plane early due to illnesses and accidents so that the families can have more lessons about love and grief and loss. And if an event is meant to happen it will find a different way to happen regardless of what the individual is choosing. I could easily do this with death or illness but I will do it with marriage instead for a lighter example. Say a person had a contract to meet a certain partner in their current life. And say they were supposed to meet each other in a certain class in college. One person decides to drop that class because they want to take something different so they never meet at that time. A few months later both individuals are invited to a party by a mutual friend and bam…they meet each other and get married and live happily ever after.
What happens when a soul tries to make choices that go against their life plan? The Universe really wants an individual to try to stick to what they planned for themselves in a life. That is part of what we agree upon and promise to when we are allowed to be born into our current bodies. When a person uses their free will to try to go against the life they set out for themselves, the Universe will throw road blocks to try to discourage the person from going against their chosen path. That individual will feel like they are swimming upstream, and nothing seems to go right for them. Often times when people suddenly find themselves on the right path (what they planned out for themselves), they will notice that things flow easier. Doors open and apparent miracles occur at the last moment for that person to move in alignment with the life path they chose. Is it possible to change the lessons you want midstream if you are too scared or tired or for whatever reason? Yes, but it is difficult. It takes some significant shouting and pleading with the Universe and your guides to allow for the change and the contracts to be broken. And it is not advised to do this anyway because you are really just postponing the lesson. You will have to undertake the lessons and challenges again in another future incarnation. This is also why suicide is not such a fantastic option. People that commit suicide don’t go to some eternal hell to rot for all of eternity like some religions make us believe. Individuals do have the free will to end their lives whenever they want. However, ending one’s life is pretty much canceling out most of the work one just did in the current incarnation that one lived. The individual that commits suicide will need to experience that life all over again in a different body with all the same challenges it was trying to run away from. If the person thought it was bad enough to need to escape, they might as well stick it out so they don’t have to repeat all that misery again!
We also live our lives here within a construct. We do not have ultimate free will because there are often plans of a much grander scale that supersede our own individual goals and choices. Groups of beings and the Universe itself all have their own plans and unfortunately we have to fall into the construct. When a soul choses to be a human they agree to be a human and do human things. When a soul choses to be a cat or a whale they need to fit into the construct of that being’s makeup. Sure I want to fly like a bird, but I am sure as hell not going to jump off a cliff to try! Groups of mass consciousness such as nation states for instance, can also play into affecting our free will. I will admit one of the biggest annoyances and frustrations I have here on this planet is trying to break free from the constraints of mass consciousness and to rise above the construct humans have placed here. Governmental authority, big corporations, the military, big religions, etc. are all huge groups of human consciousness that frequently try to put all of humanity in their own little boxes in order to contain, control, restrict and limit individual free will. I refuse to be put in a box and controled through fear tactics, and fighting against those powerhouses here is a huge undertaking and no small task. Winning the battle against the evils of mass consciousness is going to take more than just a handful of us to raise our awareness above it. We need to come together and rise up together to change the world. Then there is the issue of when things beyond our control that are not even caused by humans happen to large groups of people. Natural disasters are an easy example to look at. Even a massive earthquake experienced by thousands of people is an event agreed upon on a soul level by all those people experiencing it. Part of the great process of being here in the physical realm is to surrender to a higher power and to know we can’t and shouldn’t control everything. Surrendering to the will of the Universe or nature can be one of the hardest lessons for us to learn here on this planet.
Lastly, I want to touch on fate and destiny. Fate is the development of events beyond a person’s control, regarded as determined by a supernatural power. Destiny is the outcome of events that will necessarily happen to a particular person or thing in the future. Fate and destiny do not need to be looked at as separate from the concept of free will. Most of the time fate and destiny are actually the result of events that were decided upon in our life plans to begin with. Technically our free will on the other side put those events in our life plans for our soul’s learning purposes. Often times destiny is a result of the choices we made in our lives. This is similar to the ideas of cause and affect or karma. The end came about because we made certain choices. In the end, the ultimate destiny of every individual is all the same. Our souls send us here to learn lessons about love and fear, the light and the dark, in order for our souls to expand and enlighten to a new level. It’s as simple (or maybe not so simple?) as that!
When Whitney Houston sang about the “Greatest Love of All” (third pop diva reference in two blogs – game, set, match!), there should have been some caveats and addendums. In my last blog, I wrote a lot about the golden rule and loving others as you would yourself (actually I wrote a lot about why people are assholes, but I opted for the more pleasant topic of love). Today I am going to talk about a different type of love which is very important to have, but which also has the power to destroy if it skews in the wrong direction. This is love for one self or ego as it is known when it gets distorted.
As Whitney sang about, loving yourself is one of the greatest loves of all because it is so damn difficult for most people to obtain! There is also a huge confusion over what true self love is. As RuPaul states “If you don’t love yourself, how in the hell are you gonna love someone else! Can I get an amen in here?” Love of self is one of the most important aspects we can have to be a healthy functioning individual. Lack of self love is a huge problem facing many individuals. At its best it causes us to live our lives in fear, lack, and doesn’t allow us to manifest what we want in our lives. At its worst, it causes diseases of all kind in the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual bodies of people and ultimately could wind up in your death. On the flip side, what happens when we love ourselves too much, as in we only care about ourselves and not other people? This is the ego and it breeds selfishness, cruelty, hate, fear, conceit, and narcissism. Is loving ourselves (what Whitney sings about) the same thing as ego? Not exactly. There is a difference between true genuine self love and ego. Loving ourselves comes from a place deep inside. This is a true love that comes from our soul. We love, appreciate and accept ourselves no matter what our faults are, and we forgive ourselves for making mistakes. This is an unconditional love in the same way we (hopefully) strive towards loving other people. We appreciate the oneness of our souls to all of creation and the similarities and differences in ourselves and others and let it all just be as it is, free from judgment, comparison, and fear. That is a love closer to the self love I am speaking of. True love of self is of a soul nature and is eternal.
The ego on the other hand, is the personality that is experiencing this current incarnation. It lives in fear. The point of the ego is to stand out and be different for fear of it losing its identity and its “specialness.” The ego will do whatever it can to not be diminished and to not die (although its fight is pointless because its death is inevitable), for once it is dead it ceases to exist. It will do whatever it needs to to stay relevant. It has many tools to complete this task of remaining special. First, it loves to compare so that it can make sure everyone knows it is better. It is the most important, the most correct, the most relevant, the smartest, the best looking, the richest, the most powerful, the funniest, etc… anything it can come up with to make it stand out as being different than everyone else. Look at social media sites like Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. While these things can serve as a good way to stay connected, they also ooze ego and provide a perfect outlet for the ego to say “look at me, look at what I’m about, I’m special and important!” What arises from all this ego? Pretty much all the evils in the world (and don’t think this is just an individual idea, because groups and mass consciousness itself can also fall victim to ego). My music is better than your music, my TV and movies are better than yours, my idea or way of doing things is better than yours, my religion or political party is better and more correct than yours, my country or race or gender or sexual orientation is better than yours, and the list goes on and on. It is easy to see how when the ego is allowed to run rampant and is not checked, situations become so dire as to cause individuals or groups of individuals to act out in the most atrocious ways (all stemming from the ego’s fear of death mind you). War, rape, murder, molestation, violence, greed, theft, discrimination, torture, etc. all become tools for unchecked egos to get what they want. The person’s ego has identified with form and made its likes and dislikes, possessions, looks, and physical traits its identity rather than what is beneath which is the eternal soul and spirit. It will fight tooth and nail to ensure it stands out and is the most important and special.
The ego is also very sneaky. Sometimes things that seem like they are not egotistical actually are very egotistical. People tend to easily recognize when someone is being selfish by demanding that they get their way. However lots of depression also stems from ego. The ego is attempting to have the individual appear “in lack” in order to make it special and stick out. For example, “nobody wants to date me,” why am I always alone in the world,” “this job sucks,” “I hate myself,” “nobody listens to me,” “I hate this song or vegetable or carpet so you should too,” all these things are ego. The key to determining whether or not something is coming from ego is to look at what the true focus is of what someone is saying. Does it ultimately involve self and the words “me,” “I,” or “my” or is something just allowed to be whatever it is without fear, judgment, hurt, sadness, or the forcing of others to be like it too. It is ok to have likes and dislikes. All the variety is what makes the world such a great place, and far less boring. However, true self love allows you to just be yourself and allows you to appreciate yourself for all that you are, and it also allows others to just be themselves and appreciate them for what they are.
What about loving others? Does ego come up there too? Yep! True love is not ego. Many times people do, say, think, or feel things that they wrongfully assume are from love. One of the huge problems plaguing our planet right now (and quite frankly it is killing our environment) is the keeping up with Jones’ syndrome. This is trying to possess as many things as possible so our egos can feel even more special. The more we have the more powerful, smart, sexy, rich, and desired we will be. Unfortunately, this often translates into hoarding and possessing not only physical goods but also people, animals, and plants. People end up trying to possess someone in order to appease their ego because it means that “they have someone so they can be happy now.” Or they try to change someone because they need this person to fit into their idea of what they need their relationship to be. That is not true love and acceptance. That is conditional love. Choosing partners based on anything related to the physical form is also not true love. Yes we have our likes and dislikes and some things may be more lustful to us in that we physically desire them. However, needing someone to have money or a certain career or 10% body fat or gigantic boobs is not true love. That is just the ego desiring to possess something to “make it happy” so it can be better than everyone else or so it can impress other people by what it managed to get. In reality, you can never possess another living soul – they have all been granted free will. Heck, we can never possess the planet itself, which is why buying real estate is such an insane idea to me as nobody can actually own the earth. We don’t even own our own bodies. This lump of matter called flesh is actually something we borrow and inhabit for about 70-100 years if we are lucky and then it goes back to the earth where it came from. And what about when we fear what others do, think, say, or feel about us? That is also ego. Who cares?! Just be yourself and if someone has a problem with that, then that is their problem. As long as they are not harming us or someone else why get worked up about what others are going to do, say, think, or feel about us? Their thoughts, feelings, actions, and words are their own business, and they don’t concern us. I struggle with this one often myself.
So many people are assholes. and ego goes a long way to explain the reason why. Are things worse now than they ever were? It sure seems like it! However the answer in reality is not really. Same as it ever was. The main reason the problems are becoming so amplified (so much so that it is beginning to manifest major damage and changes on this planet and in the human race itself) has to do with an increase of the sheer amount of people living on the planet with unchecked egos. Population has increased 7 times to over 7 billion people in the last 200 years alone. This problem is a critical one for us to start to solve, and now is the time for humanity to truly begin to awaken to the age of enlightenment, free of (or at least minimized) ego. If we don’t…apocalypse and Armageddon await.
I know I have ranted a bit on this subject. It is probably one of my top pet peeves when I see it in other people (or in myself). It is true that the things we dislike about others the most are what we dislike in ourselves. A ton of authors have talked about the problems with ego. I particularly enjoyed “A New Earth” by Eckhart Tolle if you would like to read more on this topic. That book was eye opening and challenged me to really look deep at myself and the world around me. It was enlightening, and I would highly recommend it. Half the battle of the ego is recognizing when it is making its way to the surface. The more people that can understand what it is, when they are going into ego, and how they can try to minimize it, the closer we can come to world peace and heaven on earth.
Thanks to Amber and Cher for the title of this blog – my first pop diva reference! So one of my favorite ways of studying religion and spirituality, is to examine and look for the Universal truths that can be found in any given religious or spiritual path. Humans spend so much time bickering and going to war over what religion is best or who’s spirituality is better. It really is quite ridiculous, and humans are missing the point. All the paths offer something new. All the paths have some truths and some not so truths in them. The reason the Universe has given us so many paths to choose from is that every soul is unique. Every individual needs something different to help them along their spiritual journey and to gain the growth they need to expand their soul. What works for one person, doesn’t necessarily work for another. However there are some things that work for everyone and that are, in fact, mentioned in most, if not every religious and spiritual path on the table for our choosing. I term these items “Universal Truths,” and I look for these little nuggets of gold wherever I can find them. The one I would like to discuss today is the so called “golden rule.”
The golden rule basically states something like this: “One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself.” It can also be expressed in the negative as the so called silver rule: “One should not treat others in ways that one would not like to be treated.” The golden rule appears in almost every religious and spiritual text on the planet. I found an awesome comprehensive list online here if you are curious, but every religious and spiritual path from Christianity to Buddhism, from Hinduism to Wicca, from Scientology to Islam mentions it as well as multitudes of different philosophers. If I could sum up the entire way to live your life into one simple phrase, I would pretty much state this rule. In fact, if I was allowed to only pick one thing that would make the world a better place, this would be it. The path to world peace really just boils down to treating others with love and respect.
Why the hell is this so freaking hard? It is amazing how cruel people are to each other on this planet, and it is no wonder people get depressed and driven towards suicide. To experience this, all you need to do is to watch the news (which I don’t recommend unless you want to be bombarded with propaganda and fear porn), troll the internet (try reading the comments section on a blog or news website, scroll through social media sites, or go to a chat forum and you will see what I mean), or attend a school and witness the bullying that occurs daily to students in schools all over the world. Sometimes it almost seems like people are getting meaner as we progress forward. Unfortunately, if one looks back throughout history, we can pretty much see a steady stream of crazy has tormented humans, animals, and plants (they have souls too!) since the dawn of time. It is true we are living in darker times, but there is always light and love to be found, and one just needs to focus on the positive and those who are emitting light and love in their daily lives to find it. In fact by focusing on those amazing people (rather than the poopy assholes – on a side note if you are offended by the use of that word or are reading this to a child, please insert big meanies as a replacement), you will draw the amazing people into your life, and the not so amazing people will fall away.
So what is causing people to be so mean? This answer is complex as are most things of a spiritual nature, and there are many reasons. This planet is a battleground between the light and the dark. It is the place where both ends of the spectrum of positive and negative come to battle out that eternal battle that seems to never end. There are unseen forces, both dark and light, that influence us and our surroundings. This is also a place we decide to be born onto just so we can experience the battle. We are given the gift of free will to make choices, and it is through making choices that we learn. There are great lessons in learning and experiencing both the light and the dark, endless lessons really, and those lessons drive us towards our ultimate goal of wisdom, enlightenment, soul growth, and expansion. Yay what fun!!! Every soul is at a different point on their path towards enlightenment so some souls have lived many lives and have had much more experience in learning lessons. These are the “old souls” if you will. Many more are middle-aged souls while others are younger or even brand-spanking-new-first-life-out-of-the-driveway souls. Obviously I am referring to reincarnation and not simply human age during one life span. Yes we come back here to experience the cruelty of all the poopy assholes over and over again!!! More fun!!! The younger the soul, the more inexperienced (or less wise, and I really don’t mean that in a derogatory way), which means the more likely they are to make a massive blunder during their current incarnation. We have all done the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad things during some or several of our incarnatioins…even us older souls. Unfortunately, the older the soul, the more suffering the soul takes on to experience their own soul growth. They are older and wiser and thus can handle more (Wait what?! Why do we keep coming back here again? Oh yeah…fun!!!). That is why most all people called to healing professions are old souls and also why they go through a shit storm in their lives to get to the point where they can heal others. Another huge cause of why people are mean has to do with the human ego and the fact that the ego state is currently so strong on this planet both collectively and individually. I will talk more extensively about that in the future.
Apparently the golden rule can also be tricky for some people. Due to a slight misinterpretation, the golden rule can become not quite so golden. In 1903, George Bernard Shaw stated, “Do not do unto others as you would that they should do unto you. Their tastes may not be the same.” Author and freethinker Ali Sina comments: “A much more accurate definition of the Golden Rule is: Treat others with the same consideration and respect that you wish to be treated. It does not mean do to others exactly what you like to be done to you. For example, if you like peanut butter, it does not mean you should feed it to someone who is allergic to it, which can kill him. It does not mean you should take your wife who likes concerts, to a basketball game because you like basketball or invite your Hindu friend to a barbeque because you are a meat lover when you know he is vegetarian” (Source – www.religioustolerance.org which by the way is a great site filled with tons of fantastic religious and spiritual information). History has been littered with instances of people “treating others the way they would want to be treated” because it is “for their own good” or “what is right for society.” This often happens when one person’s religion or moral compass dictates what should be right for everyone whether it is true or not. Another spiritual teacher of mine always says “Don’t should on me, and I won’t should on you.” Unless you are under the age of 18 and your parent is trying to prevent you from physically, mentally, emotionally maiming or killing yourself or other people, nobody should be telling you anything that you should or should not do. People have used religion to justify everything from racism to homophobia, from misogyny to social inequality. Some of the worst atrocities that have happened on this planet were done “for the good of the whole” or because “God says so.” Really because not my God! These include things such as the inquisition, the holocaust, child abuse, conversion therapy for gays and lesbians, mental institutions, and the list goes on and on and will probably end up in a horror movie near you soon. The road to hell was paved with what…? Clearly the golden rule should have an addendum that states please do not throw your own ego and heap your own judgments and opinions of what is right and wrong into the rule. The rule doesn’t need your help to make it better. And clearly in these instances the entire well-being be it physical, emotional, mental or spiritual of the individual (every individual) is not being considered. When we use the golden rule it is imperative that we see that we are really helping someone rather than harming them. This requires wisdom, some of which we may not be enlightened enough to realize at a given time.
Another way of stating the golden rule is love others as you would love yourself. If everyone would stop and remember this concept for a split second before they say, do, feel, and think things in life (and yes thoughts and feelings are made of energy so even feeling and thinking mean feelings and thoughts about others is creating and transmitting that energy), we would sure be a whole lot closer to making heaven a place on earth…thank you Belinda Carlisle. Two pop references in one post!