Thursday, February 12, 2015

Lucky 13

In light of it being Friday the 13th, the day of darkness where some believe it’s the day of “bad luck”, I wanted to explore what this luck concept actually is. If you’re an American like me, you’re taught that we can make our own luck through hard work and perseverance.  A boss reflected back to me just that when she complimented me on my project completion. I sheepishly replied, “I’m lucky.” To that she said, “I believe we make our own luck.” That took me back a bit. After reflection, I agreed. I had to ask myself first why it took my boss pointing out to me that I deserved credit rather than me assuming my good results had to do with some magical agent outside of myself. That being said, I do believe in manifesting, the power of the universe to make things happen. So is that what luck is? Is it the benevolence of the universe? Add to that, if we make good luck, can we make bad luck? What is the root of this all? The clearest answer I can give is that it starts with Belief.  And I do mean Belief with a capital b because that’s how powerful it is.

Who started this superstition that the # 13 is bad and even worse on a Friday? I’ll let you do that Google search. Whoever started it and why isn’t really the answer I’m after. My interest lies in the battalion of people who believed in it, and feared it. It’s the fear that interests me.

Let’s get back to the benevolence of the universe, superstition, and fear-based thinking. If we agree that it’s the job of the universe to bestow luck upon us, then we have to create a reason why it’s bestowed or not bestowed on us. Do we have to create ourselves worthy somehow? Nothing says worthiness like hard work right? So in that scenario, all our industriousness should pay off right? But what about the good for nothings that seems to get things so easily? Oh well, maybe it’s not so simple as that. Or maybe it is as simple as that.

Why do we have superstitions at all? I believe it comes from our need to believe. Belief is part of creation and we are part of a bigger creative power.  I also believe that superstition is rooted in fear while true belief is rooted in faith. What’s the difference? It’s a good versus evil, punishment versus reward scenario.
Our thoughts are powerful and they are creating all the time. I can say for myself for all that I think I know about manifesting, there’s that little creeping doubt in there. It’s the fear of, “what if I’m wrong?” Yet, in the end, I more often than not find myself saying, “things worked out and I have my faith restored.”
Or even if things didn’t work out, in time and perspective I saw why. And there’s the harder part of understanding that my fears had gotten in the way of seeing the bigger picture at the time and I could have saved myself some heartache if I could have gotten my head out of the way.

I’m careful to not take on anyone else’s superstitions too readily and will challenge them if I’m feeling cheeky. A French girl I met recently told me it is bad luck to put your purse on the ground because as she said it, it’s bad for money. I smelled superstition and I asked her where she got that. She acted startled. She couldn’t answer. “Maybe you started it,” joked another person. Maybe. I’m sure someone told her and she passed it along. And maybe that’s how Friday the 13th became unlucky, that kind of blindly passing along of info without question; Much like those heinous chain emails  from the 90's that threatened bad luck if we didn’t forward them. I can hear my spirit guides chuckling about those.

Oh yes our spirit guides. They listen to our thoughts and pay attention to what we believe. And if we constantly put out negative thoughts, we create negative scenarios. We live our nightmares and at the end of the day became the "Chicken Littles" of our own creation. Well that sounds gloomy. And it can be if you choose to live that way.

The good news is we can question beliefs because they are thought patterns of our own creation. My mind can be a dark place if I allow my fears to encapsulate it. It takes discipline not to cater to my shadow self. If I bought into all my fears, I wouldn’t be living in a new place, with a mountain view, and seeing my healing business starting to take off. It took faith and patience to bring me here.  So I’m going to enjoy this beautiful Friday because it's FRIDAY.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Taps and Yanks: my ghostly encounters

I won’t (or don’t) call myself a ghost whisperer but I have had things happen with spirits; ones that left me questioning, why me? I can’t answer why – only explain the conditions surrounding my encounters.

My ghost experiences haven’t happened in places one would expect – as in a haunted attraction or some creepy house late at night – but in rather ordinary places. And the two encounters, well, more accurately, physical encounters happened in the day.

The last time a spirit touched me, it was two days before Halloween. I’d gone to my favorite coffee shop. Late in the afternoon, the front room wasn’t packed and the wicker couch that sat in the corner of the shop stood empty. I quickly honed in on the spot. It was an ideal place to hole up and write. Since the couch lined the wall, and tucked into the corner, no one could walk behind me or on my right side. A coffee table stood between me and the opposing couch so that barricaded me further. And that day, no one sat on the left me. Being sensitive, I can easily be disturbed by too much jostling noise around me, so I always looked for a spot where I could have the least interruption from another customer passing by. The remaining afternoon light fell through the window as I sat engrossed in my work. As I said, nestled in the corner, no one could possibly be in contact with me, so when I felt 3 taps on my right shoulder I knew I wasn’t being touched by a physical being (i.e., a live person). Being a sensitive person, especially to energy, I just knew something or someone was there. And based on a previous experience, I felt that I was again encountering a ghost.

The first time, I was living on a farm in Israel. It was in the fall, and I was in the green house, working alone. I don’t recall exactly what I was doing. I probably was repotting some plants, but I can still feel my arm being yanked suddenly – the kind of yank done by someone trying to get your attention. I most likely yelped and turned around to see who was doing it. No one was there. I yelled out my boyfriend’s brother’s name thinking he was trying to prank me. No response. I checked around under the table and all around it. I saw no one. I didn’t hear a crunch on the floor gravel which I would have heard if my boyfriend’s brother was trying to run out the door. And I thought, “if it really was him trying to prank me, I knew he couldn’t contain his giggle.” It popped into my head then that it must have been a ghost.

Before this experience in the greenhouse, I had another inexplicable experience, again, while working alone. One late afternoon working in the field, pruning some trees, I looked up and saw 2 figures, a woman and a young boy, standing a few feet away.  Standing isn’t the correct term. It felt like an image to me. A reflection. The clothes they wore solidified that feeling. The woman wore a long black dress and a young boy wore an equally dark suit. It looked like 19th century clothing to me, the kind the Jewish settlers from Europe that farmed that area must have worn. I knew from a museum visit at the Hula Valley visitor center where the farm was located that life hadn't been easy for the settlers. They bought land in Palestine and turned a malaria infested swap into a productive farm area. But malaria must have struck many of the immigrants and I wondered if the ghosts I saw were victims of the disease. 

I admit seeing their image startled me. I turned my eyes and when I looked back, I saw nothing. I shrugged it off at the time. It was possible my eyes were playing tricks on me. However, there’s no mistaking a yank on your arm. The ghost or ghosts were trying to make their presence known. Prior to this, I had a lot of harrowing experiences while living there (that’s another story for another time) so by the time the ghosts yanked on me, I wasn’t exactly in the mood to figure out why. But, and I’m going to be cliché, the mystery of why me on that day still “haunts me”. Ok, I said it. Pun time over. But truly, I never stopped wondering, why me. Over the years, I’ve turned over several possibilities. Lately I've wondered if my pale, European like face might have been part of the draw. My Israeli boyfriend and many of his neighbors were either of Persian or Indian descent. But the figures I saw were definitely of European heritage and perhaps I was someone they related to. Or perhaps they felt from me that I was a stranger in a strange land like they had been. I can’t say, and I may never know why me. I never mentioned the experience to my boyfriend. I didn’t think he would have believed me. So if it were a common experience there, to be tugged on by a ghost, it was unbeknownst and still unknown to me.

As an empathic person, I am open to energy, and because of my previous experience in Israel, I probably put up a wall - a fortress would be more accurate - until a friend told me about the “free will” law. According to her, spirits had no right to mess with you. You could simply could tell them to leave you in peace and they had to obey. She told me this prior to me moving to Sonoma. So when I felt that tap on my shoulder, I simply told the ghost to go away. Did it? Sort of. The tab on the right side of my word document starting scrolling up and down. At least, that’s what I remember at the time. In retrospect I do wonder, "Wait, did that really happen? And why did it happen?" At the time, I honestly thought that this ghost was trying to startle me. In startling me, I would have released energy and this energy would have fed the ghost. "Isn’t that what it wanted?" That’s what I thought. 

Let’s just say for fun that it got into my word document to tell a story. And had I opened myself up and let this ghost speak, I would have learned his story. In hindsight, it’s possibly that this ghost, who I felt was a male was probably a farm worker.  He could have been someone of Italian descent who came to Sonoma after losing his chance in the Gold Rush, to find a more fortunate circumstance in the fertile vineyards. He didn’t fulfill his promise. Having an unfinished life, perhaps he needed to share his story and finding a writer might have been his goal. Like my Israeli immigrants, his story has yet to be told, at least by me.... Poor ghost! I won’t know his story either or again, the mystery of why me. Perhaps you’ll be braver should you get tapped and turn and ask why? It’s that time of year when the window between our worlds are thinner and more answers can be heard, if you are a brave soul. 

Happy Halloween!!

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

The Intuitive Energy Healer that is Me

Hi everyone! I have exciting news to share about a new career path for me. I'm an intuitive energy healer. I discovered my ability to work with energy a few years ago, but I didn't have a full realization what I could do with this ability until last year. I do plan on writing about my discovery but since it's a STORY and might take a bit for me to write, for now, I wanted to announce the launch of my website and my business called Pure Pearl Energy Healing.

I'm excited about this career path because it's a great avenue for me to use my ability as an empath. I'm still a writer. The great thing about being a writer is that I can articulate what this wild world of energy healing is all about. So as I learn, I'll share. Check out my site. Feel free to ask questions. And of course, contact me if you need energy healing. I specialize in doing online healings either by phone or by instant messaging so I can make appointments with people no matter what continent you are on. (Really. I've done a healings with people located in Cental and South America).  I also do empathic reads and coaching. You can find all details of what I do on my site.

Best, Jen

Monday, October 28, 2013

Ghost Tail

Since it's nearing my favorite time of year - Halloween - I thought I'd blog one of my creepier stories.

I love cats. And I mean really love them. You might subscribe my love of them to my inner witch. Whatever the draw is, I just have a strong connection to cats. I also love old homes. And I love cemeteries. Cemeteries don't creep me out like they may for some people. The energy I feel at a cemetery is mostly peaceful which is why I often visit them. I used to live in a Victorian house in Oakland down the street from one of my all time favorite cemeteries, Mountain View. One sunny morning, I was tra-tra-tralling through Mountain View when I spotted a red circle on a tombstone. I was instantly intrigued because I associated that kind of of symbol with Native American Indian hieroglyphs - and to me that was a positive type of drawing. I was too far away to make out what the symbol truly was so I bounced excitedly over to the tombstone to figure out what it could mean. The design consisted of two circles, one larger circle encompassing the smaller circle. The larger circle was painted with something that looked like hair and more hair then would ever come off using a brush. A chill came over me and I got a tingling that something wasn't right which made me look to my right. Down on the ground I saw a skeleton of a newly killed cat. The body was skinned and contorted. I realized then that what I truly discovered was a cat used in animal sacrifice. This symbol had nothing to do with Native American culture. It was sinister. And maybe what I thought was red paint could very well have been blood. Horrified, I rushed to the cemetery's management office to report what I saw. I explained to the person at the counter what I found. The person took in what I said and told me that they would send someone over to clean it up. I wasn't sure if the person at the counter took me seriously. To me it was dead serious. Someone had performed an evil act in one my favorite places & I wanted that cleaned up. I left the cemetery, disturbed, hoping they would follow through.

I couldn't let it go. I kept thinking about the cat, wondering if the cemetery personnel were handling the cleanup. I dragged a friend over to the tombstone the next day. The symbol, the cat & all the negativity of that act was still there at the grave site. Pissed & upset I marched over to the office. Now, normally I'm pretty polite. I don't harass people to get my way but on that day, I did just that. I made a cemetery staff member get into one of their golf carts and drive over with me to the site so he could see it for himself. The staff member tried to figure out who would do the sacrifice, blaming it on art students he'd seen the day before. I wasn't convinced. That wasn't an act of someone just dabbling in black magic. To me, the extent of the sacrifice, including the skinning of the cat spoke of someone with a very corrupt and damaged mind.

I don't know if they found the culprit who did the sacrifice but the cemetery did clean up the mess and today there is no trace of what happened there - the energy has been purified. But I think of that cat and what happened to it. I'm angered that anyone would murder an animal because of their fucked up psychology. Recently I've been thinking about the cat's spirit. "What happens to the spirit of an animal if it is sacrificed?," I wondered. Then it dawned on me that I might know. (Now that I've already revealed some of my weird quirks such as liking cemeteries, I guess I can confess that from time to time I see spiritual energy.) In my Victorian house in Oakland, out of the corner of my eye, I would see a spirit of a black cat darting around the house. I didn't know who the cat was. I thought I might be, Frankie, who was a cat of former housemate. Frankie didn't die at the house but he lived at that house for several years and he and I had a close relationship. But I wasn't sure. I would only see the cat briefly, jumping around. Finally it hit me that maybe it was the cat from the cemetery. I didn't see the color of its fur in the circle because it was covered in red. It made sense though that the color of the cat was black as they are too often picked up and abused in that way. I truly hope that it was the cat, that it's spirit attached to me in the cemetery and I brought him home to a safe place. And mostly I hope that cat has moved on and is living it's 2nd, 3rd or 9th life in a very happy home.

Monday, July 22, 2013

You're sensitive? Me too. I've learned to embrace sensitivity as a gift

Interesting the interaction I just had with a lady at Starbucks. This lady was one person in line ahead of me. The lady directly in front of me turned to me and asked me if I had the time. I said I didn't know without rummaging for my phone to check. She told me that's okay. The lady in front of her turned and "randomly" said to her,  "I think it's about 12:45." The lady who 1st asked for the time took off right then. Curious, I reached for my phone and saw that it was exactly 12:45. I spoke out to the woman and said, "you're right, it is 12:45". "That's weird," she said. "Not to me," I said. "I'm empathic so I often get those kinds of feelings." "What's empathic?" inquired this lady. Then it dawned on my the purpose of my conversation.

I've been coming across A LOT of empathic people lately. I feel this is a combination that I've become more open then I've ever been about my abilities along with my heartfelt desire to connect more with others like me. In the past, I wouldn't have mentioned this ability for fear of being seen like a nut job to this person. She may have thought that I was but I pursued the conversation regardless. I explained to her that empaths have heightened sensitivity to feelings. I asked if she felt this was true of her. She replied, "Well, I'm sensitive but I always thought that was because I'm a mommy." I didn't respond directly to her supposition that what makes her more sensitive is being a mom. Having had both an insensitive mother and grandmother, that's not my own personal experience that motherhood heightens your sensitivities. (Though I have witnessed women I felt who have had an overly hard exterior soften after becoming moms). Motherhood doesn't mean you can pick up on information like knowing the time. That's someone in my opinion that has heightened sensitivity (or highly sensitive).

When I say "heightened sensitivities" I mean being open to information in the "ether". And what I mean by "information in the ether" is that there's universal communication always going on around us. The universe is always speaking and if you have your radar on, you can pick things up. This is what sensitives know. Ask one, if you're not one, and they will tell you. :) Some of us are more tuned into it than others.

When I have this kinds of conversation, or what I like to think as an "universal encounter" I shift up my energy level so that I'm in the universal space of consciousness. It's from this place where I can to tune into someone's energy. In this case, I was determining this woman's empathic ability. I felt she had this ability so I asked her what she did for a living. She said she worked with special needs kids, some of whom were autistic. I asked if she could feel what their needs were even with the kids who weren't able to speak. She replied she had "non verbal kids" and she felt she could sense their needs. I shared my feeling that she was uniquely gifted to work in this capacity because she could communicate her students' feelings if they couldn't verbally express themselves. I'm tearing up just thinking about this & how wonderful she could use her empath skills in this way!

The flip side of being an empath is that we can pick up so much of someone else's energy, it can fatigue us. This lady told me she's an insomniac and gets about 4 hours of sleep. I felt myself "full of advice" to share about how she could protect her energy but I also could feel the wall, the wall the woman began to put up between us. When I feel a wall I know that I've reached my limit with a person. I pulled myself away & went on with my business. I don't know what she'll take from this conversation. She may just forget all about it -and if what I shared doesn't work for her, I feel she should drop what I said. I felt the purpose of the conversation was to validate that her sensitivities & that her abilities serve a purpose which she's uses to "great effect".

Being sensitive I'm sensitive to other sensitives who may have gotten a bad rap from others about being "too sensitive".  I've had a fair share of complaints from family and "friends" that I'm too sensitive. They threw this at me when I reacted to a comment I felt was piercingly unkind. But rather than take responsibility for what was said by the person who said it, they laid it on me that my hurt feelings were my fault. And with negative piled on negative I hated my sensitivity until I had the realization that being sensitive is actually a beautiful trait. And not only was it beautiful that I can connect with more emotional depth than most people, these same people who shamed me for my sensitivities also benefited from my abilities. I could tune into their feelings and feel their feelings and know where they came from. I got angry after that realization because I realized that I didn't honor or respect my abilities, and that being sensitive served a purpose. It wasn't something to be embarrassed about or hide. And when I finally accepted myself and my abilities I began to explore what I could using my own gifts.

I have to give credit my one of my Twitter friends, Helen E. for helping me cope with my sensitivities. She inspired me because she didn't hide that she's highly sensitive. She embraced it. She even puts out a Twitter journal called "I'm a little sensitive." I admit I was concerned about following another highly sensitive person on Twitter because I didn't want to risk offending her. One of the downsides of my sensitivity is that I can feel the hurt of others so if someone is highly sensitive, a red flag goes up. Of all the time I've followed Helen, I've NEVER had any difficulty. Unlike others where I've felt a burst of emotional flame, we've always had good communication. And what I took from that is this: in her act of embracing herself, she doesn't hide who she is, or makes excuses like I had been doing. I admired and felt inspired by this self-acceptance.

I admit there was a part of me that wanted to pass on the feel good energy of "feel good about being an empath" to this lady today. Maybe she needed it. Maybe it was projection. But I felt something. And I know my abilities. If there's a feeling, I trust it now. And rather than "tough it out" meaning smash down my feelings like others do, I embrace them and go with the emotional flow.

I told the lady it was really nice meeting her and it was. If anything else, I had a connection and in that is a good experience on any given day.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Game Play: My new winning strategy

I’ve asked myself what is my "DEAL", as if the cards I’m “handed” in life aren’t the cards of my choosing. What I mean by that is, I know I designed my life before I entered into my earth body, even if my “score” isn’t always in my memory.  I’ve walked sidewalks spotting playing cards lying in the street.  And I’ve wondered if that’s a “chance” card or a card I’ve asked to receive. I’ve also found dice & wondered if I’m on a roll or again if this is just chance.  

In reality, I’m not much of a game player, in particular if the games are mostly made of odds; I like to win. So, the games I most like to play are ones of strategy where I can plan my move & be in the spot that’s most advantageous. Sometimes it works, sometimes it doesn’t; but the more I play the more I can predict that outcome. This is my view of intelligent design: to know the position that’s most advantageous to get a winning score.  

I've surprised myself by writing this above paragraph. I'm not always in touch my competitive spirit but it's there. On one hand I want to admonish myself for such thoughts as seeing life as "winning" or "losing". But life is "rewarding". We have these phrases and we use them often: "the game of life", "winning hand", etc., etc. If I took life as play, could I take it less seriously? Can I just see some situation as just a bad hand & a hand I can walk away from?

I said I don't like to play the odds but I have gambled at a few things in life & there hasn't always been a good pay off. So in my life now, as I move forward, I'm playing a game of strategy - one that when I see a turn at the road ahead, I won't be so freaked out because I've either planned for that outcome or know enough to know how to "DEAL" with it.

So maybe that's my true DEAL - to forgive the losses & forge ahead with a renewed spirit that life is continuing on a roll in a new direction. 

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Keep on moving on: what I learned from my horse ride

(I revamped a piece I wrote a few years ago about my horseback riding lessons. I needed to remind myself of this lesson & interestingly enough, it perfectly fits the themes of this July 4th Independence Day!)

Don’t fall off -that's the sage advice I learned when riding a horse.  I had signed up for horseback riding lessons a few years back to get over a childhood fear of  riding horses.  As a kid, I didn't glow in confidence. I felt run down quite often and getting on top of an animal so strong and seemingly uncontrollable scared me. 
As an adult, I wanted to correct  my insecurities but I had to deal with my doubts that I lacked the will or commanding presence to ride the horse and get it to “listen” to me.  But I wanted to learn if I could, or at least what it took.  

On my first lesson, we didn't get on the horse.  Instead, we learned about them, how they responded to us, where their blind spots were.  Once we learned what their needs were, and how to control them, then we got to go for a ride.  Oh, and also, the teacher stressed we really needed to pay attention and be present.

Being present hasn't been easy for me. I've often escaped into being "elsewhere", not always interested and comfortable where I was. If I wanted to get on a horse, I didn't have that luxury of escapism. I had to pay attention or else I might find a tree branch in my face at best or being kicked onto my behind at worst. So I paid attention to what the teacher said as best as I could trying to hold back my anxieties.

I took a brief hiatus after my first lesson. (I got offered a contract job I felt I couldn't refuse). When I returned to the lessons, I got put into a class full of advanced students. This both intimidated me & inspired me. I knew I wasn't going to be as good as the other riders but I felt comfort that they knew what they were doing & they could help me. And they did. 

One of the woman I bonded with talked about riding as being her one Zen day amidst her hectic schedule.  Riding to her was meditation. This Zen feeling took awhile for me to figure out;  I was too busy hanging onto the horse, my back in knots.  However,  I did manage to figure out that staying in the saddle was not just a matter of thighs clenching the saddle but also the balance of the hips swaying back and forth.  It was a start from getting my thinking out of my head and into my body. 

Once I figured out that I had to both relax but also grip the saddle, I let go in my next horse ride. My teacher instructed that as the horse runs, its back flexes up and down so we had to follow that movement. (If we didn't go with the flow, then we would make the ride bumpy & uncomfortable). When it was my turn, I shut my mind off, responded to the horse’s movement, feeling a oneness with him.  My grip lessened on the reigns, holding just enough to guide my horse. Because I let go enough, the horse could feel free to run. I didn't fear falling off; I put trust in myself that I wouldn't. I remained present &  I could feel the true power & strength of the animal beneath me. Running this free was one of the most exhilarating feelings I’ve ever had.

As the lessons continued I learned this: At all times, I needed to keep my focus ahead of me.  I had to navigate the reigns and lead the horse or the horse would lead me -but not to tightly - if the reigns were held too tightly, the horse would try to break free. I could understand how the horse felt. Isn't that how humans react too? As a person, I like to feel free, and give others free reign. But in not wanting to be a person who seemed "bossy" I also didn't state what my needs were. Could there be a possible balance in life where you could state what you want, give direction to others but also help maintain freedom for myself and for them? I was learning I could.

Riding a horse is a balance act, like life is. And having a relationship with a horse is similar to any type of relationship. I had to learn what the horse responded to so I could get what I wanted - a fun ride. I'm still learning how to navigate life - where I need to give direction &; where I need to learn to let go. It's a work in progress; but what I got from my lesson is this: once I learned how to really ride, the ride took me places I've often wanted to go. This is the lesson I need to remember so I can keep on moving on!