My Ayahuasca Journey Part 2
Before we get started, I want to share an online consumer advocate study about essential oils. Whether you use them or not, it is important to know how they are sourced, tested and marketed, before deciding to purchase any. I use essential oils mostly in my custom candle making. Depending on the wish of my client’s healing, will depend on which essential oil, botanical and candle color I will use. As many of you recall, last week’s blog introduced my custom candles for sale on my website. And because I use essential oils for my candles (& ever so sparingly in some of my client’s Reiki sessions as aromatherapy) I thought you a few of you might be interested in seeing this report. I will find a spot for this report on my website, but for now, here it is:
Well here we go with part 2. And I am going to leave out a lot of personal stuff, but there were some really interesting parts to this ceremony, that may be of some benefit to some of you. If you didn’t read part 1, that’s okay, they are totally different experiences. These blogs talk about my ayahuasca experience in October 2018. Typically, when one decides to go on an Ayahuasca retreat, there are opportunities for more than one ayahuasca ceremony, and although not required, it is “expected” no matter what one may tell you, that you will partake in each ceremony. To be fair, likely you have traveled across the globe, mentally, spiritually, and emotionally prepared, as well as adjusted your diet hopefully, in order to experience ayahuasca, and get the most out of your experience. So please be prepared in your own soul, how you will approach each ceremony.
This is where I was unprepared. Nausea is a known side effect of ayahuasca for greater than 90% of the people that partake; (if you read a chunk of the articles on this plant medicine, and several books) so if you suffer from severe nausea as a manifestation of your stress, pain, etc., it will be pretty overwhelming. Be prepared mentally for this, as well as how you will care for yourself during, and after this process, so that you can recover as best as possible in between each session. Each ceremony brings so much information and possible healing, so traveling across the globe in order to experience ayahuasca, and missing even one ceremony, may possibly rob you of a valuable experience. That said, you must also listen to your body, your gut reaction, your soul, and your Higher self, each and every step of the way. If ayahuasca reinforces anything, it is that reality and your experience is molded by you, and you have a right to protect your sovereignty, at all times. Surrender to the process, not any one person, ever. This is your journey of awakening and self-love.
In Ceremony #2 for me, I decided to face my fear and history of nausea, head on, as well as what else I needed to be shown. As I sat and let the medicine work its way through my body, I asked the nausea to come; come and tell me what you have to teach me. Here is a bit of the conversation I had in my head. (As a nurse, believe me, this conversation was pretty detailed! And I was also tired of the suffering. I wanted to release suffering as a way of learning).
“Please come nausea, help me understand why you are so intense, even when there is no medical reason; what have you come to teach me; you have been present for a huge chunk of my life”
To my surprise with this invitation, very little nausea came. Instead, I was taken on a journey to my solar plexus chakra. For those of you that have no idea what that is, no worries. Basically, our body has 7 energy centers (some teachers will teach there are 9-12, but the basics are 7) 3 of them are called the lower chakras: root, sacral, solar; and the remaining include: heart, throat, third eye and crown chakra. These chakras are energy centers that if out of balance, can cause different areas in our lives to become further unbalanced. And the reverse is true, if different areas of your life our out of balance, chances are your chakras are out of balance. But again, I digress, this blog is in no way a lesson on chakras, this is my ayahuasca journey part 2!
So back to my solar plexus chakra journey. I was shown all of my chakras with each of their vibrant colors, rotating in a “flower of life” pattern at a fairly consistent speed, with the exception of my solar plexus chakra. My solar plexus chakra was slower, and not quite as the vibrant yellow in color, as the other chakras in their own distinct colors. For those of you that may not know, the solar plexus chakra is directly above your navel, in other words your “gut!” On a more esoteric, spiritual explanation, our solar plexus chakra is where we hold our power, our will and our control over our environment.
This chakra also speaks about our digestive system, our self-esteem and our ability or willingness to trust our gut. This made perfect sense to me. As a person with a life-long recovery from an eating disorder, it made perfect sense to me that this chakra needed some extra attention from me. Additionally, since having this experience in my ayahuasca ceremony, I recently had a dream about being in a big, boxy orange SUV, and then a yellow corvette. A little dream interpretation, dreams about cars typically talk about how we are moving through life. So, it was clear to me in this dream, and some of the dream content, that there were also some blocks in my sacral chakra, that if cleared, would allow some rapid growth with the issues surrounding my solar plexus chakra. Which again, is far beyond the scope of this blog!
Anyway, back to the ayahuasca ceremony #2! As I was being shown the solar plexus chakra, I was then told I would be taken to the “matrix” to see what occurs when humans don’t deal with their emotions, it affects every single one of us, and creates an actual physical density that creates potential blocks for you and others. This isn’t that hard to realize, when we think about our healing.
Those of you that have, or are, doing some deep inner work, would probably agree, that as you go through this process, you learn your strength; you learn about others that are meant to be/remain in your life, heal with you, and the healing spreads all throughout your inner circle. What I saw in the matrix looked like something out of a horror movie. There were people, body parts, legs, feet, faces, just a dark, dense wall of dense energy that you really could not get through. When I realized the only way through it, was to step back, and realize this wasn’t part of me; I have addressed my issues, and continue to do so; I was able to see a way around this “real, impenetrable” density.
There were persons in this “mass of dark energy” that made eye contact with me. It wasn’t scary, but they were so “stuck” in this mass of contorted and twisted parts, that their bodies or faces couldn’t even turn to face me, just their eyes. I wasn’t scared, I just knew I didn’t belong there, but I also knew with all of my being, that what we say, don’t say, do or don’t do, to help or harm another, affects us all, including ourselves. Please never lose sight of the tremendous power each and every one of us holds in our hearts to heal ourselves and one another. If each of us had an inkling of how powerful we are as humans, we would change our reality and heal the planet, ourselves and each other. You have everything you need, within your beautiful soul, to heal yourself.
There will be a part 3, and then a follow-up to talk about what to look for, should you decide to consider your own ayahuasca experience!
Well hello friends! Happy 2019! I would like to share an article with all of you, by Brad Krause: "Self Caring". It is so amazing and rewarding to me, to see more and more people recognizing the need for self-care & self awareness, as a part of healing all of us, not just ourselves. If you would like to reach Brad, click here for further info! Thank you Brad, for sharing your time and wisdom with all of us!
It’s About You: Achieving Good Mental Health Through Self-Care
The soul-crushing stress that so many Americans live with every day takes a tremendous mental and physical toll. It’s no surprise that nearly one in five Americans lives with some kind of mental problem. Clearly, too many of us either don’t have enough time to observe self-care or are simply ignoring the need to maintain a healthy sense of personal well-being. It’s unfortunate, because you can derive a great deal of satisfaction from simple activities that don’t take much time, don’t cost much money and alleviate much of the stress you live under.
Are you the kind of person who just can’t sit down and unwind, who always feels the need to be cleaning, balancing your checkbook, doing laundry or feeling like you’re making some kind of personal progress? It’s important to just relax, to just turn off your thought process and veg out every now and then. Watch a little TV. Thumb through a magazine. Surf the internet aimlessly. It’s okay. These are relaxing activities. Even though they don’t amount to much in terms of measurable gain, they do take your mind off things that create stress, that raise your blood pressure and turn your hair grey. Just sitting quietly for awhile and letting your mind wander can have a restorative effect on your health and ability to focus.
Self-care is also about being a good custodian of your body as well as your mental health. Emphasize vegetables and fruit as well as whole grains and lean protein. Plan balanced meals and prepare them over the weekend if time is too short during the week so all that’s necessary is to heat and serve. Select from a wide variety of foods and recipes so you don’t get bored eating fish, salads and brown rice at every dinner and to increase the likelihood you’ll stick with healthy eating habits - you can even have them delivered straight to your door.
If you tend to be a skittish person who has trouble relaxing, chances are good you’re also a person who has trouble getting the 7 to 9 hours of restful sleep you need each night to function over the course of a demanding day. Sleep is absolutely essential for good health; it affects nearly every aspect of our lives, including metabolism (which impacts your weight), immune system, memory, cognitive functioning, cardiovascular health and the appearance of your skin. People who don’t get enough sleep have trouble being effective at work, and are more likely to struggle maintaining healthy relationships at work and in their personal lives. If sleep is a problem, try taking a hot bath and getting to bed earlier. Make sure your sleep environment is quiet, dark and cool with no screens or handheld devices left on.
Better air quality
The air around you can be harsh on your body and can cause itchy eyes and a stuffy nose and give you trouble breathing, but it can also greatly affect your mind and mood. When you experience brain fog or feel sad, it’s possible that it’s because you’re breathing polluted air. Investing in a good air purifier can help improve cognitive and happiness levels by reducing the allergens and other pollutants in the air in your home. There’s a variety of purifiers available for your choosing, so take the time to research to find the best one for you.
It can be really hard for someone who enjoys being helpful to say “no” in a personal or professional setting. But it’s important to remember you can only do so much for others and that you need downtime to just do something for yourself. Learn to set boundaries, which could be as simple as restricting doing favors to weekdays, and allowing evenings and weekends to be just for you. It’s important, because saying “yes” too often may encourage others to become overly dependent and expect too much from you. You can say “no” without being rude or worrying that you’ll offend someone. Simply explain that your time is limited and that it’s important to set aside time for yourself.
Ultimately, self-care is about feeling good. How you achieve that objective is a matter of personal choice, but it’s essential to do things that just make you feel happy, secure, content and relaxed. Sometimes, it just needs to be about you.
Courtesy of Pixabay.com.
“How your Religion Can Help You, or Enslave You; It’s Your Choice”
Religion v. Spirituality: There is a difference, and one of them just might be enslaving you if you let it.
So many people along their journey lose sight of who they really are, especially when it comes to religion and spirituality. In fact, many mystics would argue that just being here on earth in 3-D, is symptomatic to having lost sight of who you really are as a human being. Just as many others would say that each and every one of us, with the assistance of God, Jesus, Source, The Creator, and/or our Higher self, has worked on the other side prior to each incarnation, in order to focus on how we should serve; what our lesson or contract(s) for incarnation should be; where we reincarnate, and to which parents, can help or hinder this process. This topic gets really deep, and opinions vary widely. This road can be especially treacherous for many, if you were raised in a strict dogmatic belief system, be it Protestantism, Judaism, or some of the more fundamental Christian religions. But it really doesn’t have to be that hard.
Exploring your beliefs, the history of your faith, your heart, your confusion, your truth, is part of your duty to the truth of who you are, regardless of the faith you were raised with as a child. Too many times people turn completely away from their spiritual growth because of religion. They struggle with the idea of “how God could allow such evil in this world; therefore he/she must not exist”. This is truly a tragedy and another way of enslaving yourself to a belief system that is probably not serving your Highest good. When we let go of fear, and recognize that fear is truly an illusion, it is then we can start exploring what we believe, why we believe it (or don’t) and how we can learn to truly love ourselves and one another. This is really what all Spiritual mystics have taught over the centuries, including Jesus.
Staying in a place of fear for whatever motivation we may have, hurts everyone, not just you. Remember, when you heal, others around you heal. Spiritual growth does not require a religion, dogma or doctrine; spiritual growth is fundamental to the human experience, both individually and collectively. In fact, it is my belief that individual spiritual growth is an important part of ascension for the entire human race. You are a sovereign being, with rights, dreams, and the green light to explore what you believe, what resonates, and what doesn’t resonate. From here, you can create a set of beliefs that support you in your truth, and your Highest Good. There is no time limit imposed on you for discovering this process either, so give yourself the time you need.
The best service each of us can do for humanity and ourselves, is to keep searching and growing spiritually. If something resonates with you, dig deeper; if something feels off, leave it aside for now, and come back to it later. This is true spiritual sovereignty, and no, God won’t strike you dead if you find some things simply do not resonate with you. The important thing, is to explore with yourself, why something resonates, and why something does not. And remember, you are not a “bad” person, or an “unsaved” person because you don’t subscribe to a certain belief system; rather, you are a free person, who recognizes that Divinity dwells in all that surrounds us, and love, truly is the only truth.
In closing, remember this life is a journey, and your spiritually is something that feeds you. You owe it to yourself, to feed your soul with searching and listening. May each of you experience the joy and peace of the Universe and know yourself fully and truthfully! I leave you with a few quotes, food for thought!
Buddha & our Intellect: “Do not accept any of my words on faith,
Believing them just because I said them.
Be like an analyst buying gold, who cuts, burns,
And critically examines his product for authenticity.
Only accept what passes the test
By proving useful and beneficial in your life.”
“All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness”. - 2 Timothy 3:16
“Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.” – I Corinthians 12:4 – 8.
MEDITATION: HOW IT CAN HEAL YOUR LIFE
Creating a meditation practice isn’t as hard as you think, and it can truly heal your life. Meditation is a process; it is a journey; be kind to yourself; be open to the process; have no expectations other than not giving up on yourself. Making the world a better place begins with making you better!
What is meditation? Meditation can be defined as a process of training our minds to “sit still”. To be free from thoughts, and when thoughts, emotions/feelings or sounds arise, to simply acknowledge them as objects, while going back to breathing – in and out…
You can focus on a mantra, or simply the breath. Because there are so many different practices of meditation, and definitions, not all agreed upon, it is important if you have never tried meditation, to educate yourself a little bit before starting. I believe it is also helpful when you find a meditative tradition that resonates with you. No one style is better than the other, so it will be important for you to trust yourself and your senses when starting.
Meditation can be practiced by any religion, culture or belief system. If you think of meditation as a way to become more mindful, internally peaceful and conscious of how you interact with others, you have already mastered the idea! Meditation is a powerful grounding technique, that can provide much needed relief from stress, anxiety and despair. If you set a simple goal of trying to meditate each day for 10 minutes for 30 days, this journey will become a habit you won’t want to break.
What type of meditation do I choose? Find something that resonates with you. It can be daunting to do a google search or an Amazon book search on Meditation and become so overwhelmed that you don’t know where to start. One of the quickest ways to avoid becoming overwhelmed for beginners, is to simply go to YouTube and search “meditation”. Here you will find pretty much anything you want. You can even filter it further to things such as: Mindfulness meditation; Vipassana Meditation; 10-minute meditations; Meditation for stress; Meditation for anxiety, you get the idea. This is a good start, but let’s visit a few major categories, just so you have a little bit more information if you are just starting. Each of these types of meditation also have different techniques within their own domains. Again, none is better than the other, so feel free to experience several types before settling on what works for you, and start small, such as 10 minutes a day!
Mindfulness Meditation: Originating from Buddhist teachings, mindfulness or “open mind” meditation is a great step to learning how your mind works. I think of this as “watching my mind” as an observer. All thoughts are allowed to cross through the mind, then the focus is brought back to your breath. This is a very non-judgmental process, as all meditation practices, and helps you learn how your mind actually works. This is a great technique for reducing stress, reducing impatience, Headaches/Migraines, you name it, this can help. You can use this technique with a guided meditation. Guided meditations I like if I find myself getting too distracted. This simply means there is someone guiding you through the meditation at key points throughout the session. When you find your mind wandering acknowledge the thought, the sound, the feeling etc., say “hello” feeling, thought or sound, and let it pass you by, then go back to the breath…in…and out…feel the breath go in your lungs; feel the breath go out…In essence, with Mindfulness Meditation, you are training your mind to be “present” by using your breath as the anchor.
Focused Meditation: Trying to retrain the mind by stopping the thoughts through focus. I find this very familiar to mindfulness practice. You also will anchor yourself with an object, such as breathing, when you notice your mind wander. Many Buddhists practitioners for the most part, will tell you this is the same essentials as mindfulness meditation, Vipassana, etc.
Transcendental Meditation (TM): Oftentimes called the simplest, most natural form of meditation. People that practice this type refer to this as effortless. There is typically no philosophy attached to this kind of practice. This is a silent technique, whereby you close your eyes…and go deep where it is quiet. Oftentimes described as being beneath an ocean. It is quiet and still beneath the roughness of the ocean. There are some fabulous TM YouTube videos that instruct you in this type of meditation. TM allows the mind to experience the “source of thought”, with no emphasis on “training” the brain or concentration, or necessarily, stopping thoughts.
With TM the use of mantras or a sound is common.
Tune in next month where the blog topic will be:
“How your Religion Can Help You, or Enslave You; It’s Your Choice”
Well I think everyone already knows that none of us are perfect! (Except for my two dogs and my cat…and all of your animals! Our animals are of course perfect! Oh, and of course God is perfect!) But sometimes our fear that we have to be perfect, can stop us from doing what we desire and what we are truly meant to do. Remembering this about ourselves, can help us however, instead of paralyzing us. When I decided to ramp up my Reiki healing practice by creating a website, those same tapes played in my head “I’m not good enough; what do I have to offer that hasn’t already been done; As a healer, don’t I have to be perfect? and what if I fail?”
Well the fact is, there are 7 billion people in this world, and there is always room for each and every one of us to reach out in love and healing, in whatever medium we are drawn to serve. So, if you are wondering, “should I learn Reiki?” or some other healing modality, the answer is yes, if you want too. However, it’s also important to realize that there are so many ways to be a healing force in this planet. And no, you don’t have to be perfect to do so. Here are some things to think about that you can do each day, that will send healing energy to every single person that crosses your path. Try smiling and making eye contact; seriously. Think about the times when someone has given you the stinkeye and how that made you feel. Then think about when someone just smiled at you out of the blue, and you thought, wow, that was nice. I love to look at the change on people’s faces when they are deep in their daily doldrum grocery store routine and you smile and say hi, and their whole face lights up! I know when people smile at me, especially a total stranger, I think to myself, “hey, this world isn’t so bad!”
Just doing the best at what you do is enough. You are enough. You are perfect, you are loved and you have every right to be here. Try saying that to yourself every single morning, and add: “I love myself; I am worthy.” This will have profound effects on your life. I believe we are here to lift and support one another on this journey of life. If you are in a situation or around someone that isn’t doing that for you, you can create something new and healing for yourself. Reiki energy healing is one way to help, but there are several other ways, and you should try what resonates with you. And remember, once you start paying attention to energy, you really become in tune with yourself and you are more able to accomplish what it is that you desire. None of us are expected to work through challenging times alone, but so often we do. Reiki healing is a sacred journey, and you will likely experience healing in areas of your life you didn’t even know needed healing! And if you want to learn to do Reiki yourself, so you can offer treatments to your friends, co-workers, or start your own practice, you can do that by learning Reiki I & II, and you are set to go!
Before I close, I also want you to be aware of some things before you choose any healing modality, and with whom you choose to visit, including me. This is also important to keep in mind when you are interacting on a social media platform with any healers, meditation practitioners, or others that may be contributing on social media. These tenants are based on my beliefs and experiences (some of them challenging) and I hope you find this information beneficial. The International Reiki Training Center also has a Code of Ethics, but I have added these additional tenants to my practice that I think are important.
“Discretion” defined: my goal here is to remind people that no one is above you, including healers, priests, pastors, meditation practitioners, etc., and if they speak or act in a way that makes that appearance, approach with caution and consider withdrawing from them and wish them well on their journey. You don’t have time in your life to deal with “ego healers” that is detrimental to the process and our individual and collective healing as spiritual beings.
Do not take your client’s inventory. That is not your place, that is your ego; your client is in charge of their healing; you are on a sacred journey with them; none is elevated above the other; you are both students; you are both teachers.
Do not judge yourself, your client or the situation. That is not your business or your place; allow your client to disagree with you, and support them in their sovereign rights to do what is best for them.
If you are challenged as a healer for something you have said or done, listen with respect and compassion to your client. This is not about you being right as a healer; this is about your client’s healing; You are not omnipotent; you are in service to one another, your planet and the Higher good.
If you have wronged someone, and they have been courageous enough to tell you, please respond with compassion. Responding with “you have completely misunderstood me; my intentions” etc., is cruel and in no way validates that person’s sovereignty and experience. Your intent may be very different from your client's perception; if you have “wronged” someone, especially if they have exposed their vulnerability, and come to you, your role as a healer and a human is to make it right with compassion, understanding and respect. Telling someone “you have mis-perceived” my intent, is your ego speaking, and not your Higher self.
By the same token, if you are personally or professionally attacked as a healer, try to get to the root cause of the perceived “attacker’s” issue and address privately. If you cannot resolve this, stand in your sovereignty, and do not engage in unfruitful discussions; this serves no-one.
And finally, if any healer, teacher, anyone, tells you they “have no ego” run for the hills! They are on the incorrect dimension if they say that, and it begs the idea “he that doth protest too much!” One of our very important goals within this dimension on earth, is to learn to shed the ego. If any healer, meditation teacher, etc., tells you they have no ego, proceed with extreme caution.
Adrienne has been a Registered Nurse for over 25 years with expertise in critical care nursing. She currently is a Reiki Practitioner in her spare time, and works as a Nurse Paralegal full-time. She has been practicing Reiki since 2014.