Healing vs. Curing

In the healthcare profession, if you are fond of playing in quicksand, take on the subject of Healing vs. Curing. How are they similar? What are the differences? And what does it even mean to heal someone or to cure someone?

Many of us who work in complementary or alternative healthcare fields try very hard to stay out of those boot-sucking sands that create instant responses both pro and con for what we do professionally and how that relates to the “healing vs. curing” controversy.

While I’ve personally seen amazing improvements happen for many of my clients, I cannot make claims to be responsible for them, either with REIKI or hypnosis. And that’s fine. I leave it up to the people that I treat to decide if they feel a benefit from whatever service I provide. I don’t have a problem with that aspect.

However, because I’ve been on a fairly spiritual path for the last 30 years—a belief in a Higher Power and a greater purpose for our existence, sort of thing, I have a broader perspective on what “healing” entails.

As for “curing,” I personally think that word is a misnomer. People talk about being “cured” for many diseases only to have them redevelop a year or two later. My opinion is that the person may have been momentarily “cured”—all wrongs made right for the present situation; but they likely weren’t “healed” of the root cause of the problem, or the problem would not reoccur.

To me, that is perhaps the greatest difference between the two: healing deals with root cause of the problem to eliminate it by addressing the client’s body, mind, and soul issues; while curing deals with a counter remedy that neutralizes the ill-effects or symptoms of the immediate problem while providing some pain relief and the appearance of health improvement. To some, this might sound like the same thing, but to me it isn’t.

In my March 5th post of “Coming Back into Balance” I began with “Wellness is a term we use to describe a state of physical, mental, and emotional health. For those who look even deeper into illness causation, we could also include spiritual health in the mix.”

From my perspective, spiritual health is a major factor in truly “healing” a person’s root cause of illness or pain, because again from my perspective as a seasoned/experienced REIKI practitioner and hypnotist, the reason for the need to BE healed stems from the person’s issues that he or she came into this life to explore.

I believe that the mental, emotional, physical and spiritual bodies are united in providing the very challenges for that person to investigate in an attempt to create greater awareness of the deeper root-cause of an illness, an injury, or a malady which may be related to unresolved issues from a previous life, or may simply be chosen in Spirit World before incarnating onto Earth plane as the best way to spiritually evolve in the shortest amount of time for that person.

I know, …..and I have said this myself during my own grueling life ordeals, ….it is so hard to imagine that we would pre-plan and agree to some of the things that we go through while here. But when I take clients to Spirit World to explore why their present life is the way it is, that is what they often discover—their ordeals were either pre-planned for the most part to be this particularly challenging way, or they were retaining energy-residues from other lives that are creating part of the present-day problems.

This is one of those “you probably won’t believe it until you experience for yourself” things, so I am not trying to convince anyone that this is true. All I know is that this is what I have repeatedly experienced with my clients to the point that I DO believe what they are describing to me when they are hearing the explanations from their guides and their Higher Self while in their past-lives or in Spirit World.

Why it feels like truth for me, is because as an energy-worker, I find that illness and malady are often symptoms of a core imbalance in the spiritual body, represented by the Energy Body, which is the level where I usually work.

When I look at a person for the root cause of why he or AxialtonalFiberAlexGreyshe came to me, I am far more focused on energy blockages and energy inflammation areas, or unusual energy configurations in their energy field. And for a better concept of what the energy body entails, I will include an Alex Grey picture and hope he isn’t offended in my doing so.

This picture shows the energy meridians—rivers of energy flowing over the body that acupuncturists use for needle locations, the chakras—the center-body, colored energy funnels that act as transducers to transform energy-at-large into more utilizable energy for the organs and glands of the body, and the overall outer body energy field which is both a series of matrices (web-like frameworks) and opaque substances (more gas-like in appearance) between the matrix layers. As a REIKI practitioner and energy-worker, these are my main areas of focus.

While a single post on this subject is incapable of conveying the two main points I would like to explain in more depth, for now I’ll at least state them for later expansion:

One, we are far more than we believe ourselves to be. We extend beyond the physical limits of our body, and our minds are inseparably connected to our spiritual core-soul in ways that are hard to even conceptualize—although Alex Grey gave a good basic starting point;

And two, those core issues that we come to Earth plane to explore and experience first-hand, are the very reasons that illness, injury, and malady exist. Those are the exploration methods we use to realize our true-selves and our true capabilities.

They are the testing grounds for gaining self-awareness and appreciation of the greater scope and unlimited potential we actually possess as “spiritual beings having an earthly experience.” I see this with every Past-life and Spirit World Exploration that I conduct.

Knowingly or not, we are here for a deeper reason, and often the reason is to learn the many facets of love, including compassion and forgiveness.

The emotional dichotomy of love is that if you let yourself feel love, then eventually you will know great loss; and if you interact with others, you will definitely need to learn compassion for them and eventually forgiveness for yourself and the others throughout your own life-dramas.

In essence, if you’re a television frog, there is humor in the claim that it isn’t easy being green; but in a less humorous vein, if you’ve ever experienced some form of deep pain: whether mental, emotional, physical, or spiritual, you know all too well, that it ALSO isn’t easy being human.

The ‘Spaghetti on the Wall’ Test

For some strange reason that title came to mind as I was perusing a “book content sample” on Amazon.com to decide if I should purchase the book. My subconscious mind gave me the 3rd-eye visual of Martha Stewart’s “spaghetti on the wall” test to help me make the decision.

spaghetti on wallFor those who are unaware such an actual test exists, here it is: Boil your spaghetti just long enough to get it tender and a little sticky, so that if you took a wet glob and threw it at the wall, it would stick there. THAT’s how you know the spaghetti is just right for consumption. (Might be easier and less messy to simply taste it, but far less dramatic.)

Evidently what that author had said in his book content sample just didn’t stick on MY wall. And since I didn’t believe what he was saying, I didn’t buy the book.

Much of our lives we get unexplained nudges or hunches to do or not do something; and our rational/analytical (left-brain) mind often discounts them because there is no genuine reason to follow that hunch’s assumption.

The thing is that our creative/intuitive (right-brain) mind is very alert to the clue of “something doesn’t feel right about this situation” and then might hint in some way, that we should avoid it. If we are receptive to our intuitive input and respect that ability, then it becomes a very real tool for determining acceptable or unacceptable situations long before our logical mind kicks in to play.

So for me, if that spaghetti doesn’t stick (meaning: something just doesn’t feel right), I don’t buy it; either when purchasing books or with what someone is telling me.

I must admit to using Martha’s spaghetti test on many subjects, and I have made some crude conclusions from my testing:

  • Most newscasts are undercooked and much too anxious to sample, so the wall is full of false testing with tiny pasta piles everywhere.
  • Most politicians’ statements are overdone and hit the wall with a “splott!” then slide slimily down to the floor.
  • Most folks who have to work hard to convince me of something, forgot to take the spaghetti out of the water—it just goes to mush.
  • And most of my friends don’t even need to put the pasta in the pot. I believe them before they open their mouths if we have already established a track record of trust.

But how do you learn to trust your own intuition?

I think that comes more readily after you have established a good connection to your inner thoughts and feelings—after you really get to know yourself at the level of your core soul. Spend some quality time with yourself, free of distractions and other people, and learn to develop that inner-knowing ability. There is so much more to us than we once believed; and so much left for us to explore.

My suggestion: Stoke the flames beneath your own pot of water, and get ready to sling that pasta.

From Cygnet to Swan

Who doesn’t remember the Ugly Duckling story?

As I recall, there was a little feathered guy, misplaced at birth by his true mother, but quickly adopted by a loving mother duck. He grew up looking different than the other ducks in his flock for most of his young life.

He eventually reached the growth stage to reveal who he was truly meant to be—a magnificent, snowy-white, 6-foot wingspan “duck,” who could take off and fly rings around any of the other ducks. You better believe that for awhile he was king of the ducks around that pond! You bet!

Then one day, a pair of amazingly graceful, snowy-white, 6-foot wing-span, “other ducks” flew in to his pond area, and he realized that he wasn’t as unique as he once thought himself to be; but yet in another way, he was also aware that there were others more like himself and he didn’t need to feel so isolated and alone any longer.

He saw that he actually “belonged” to a different group: the “amazingly graceful, snowy-white, 6-foot wing-span ducks” group.  And with that realization, he suddenly lost his sense of “specialness.”  His falsely inflated ego quickly deflated, and he then felt small and ordinary. No more king of the ducks for him, so he swam off to sulk in the cattails; or as we in human form know it: Welcome to adolescence.

Is that how the story goes, or did I veer off course somewhere?

Identification with others is important for us. Feeling similar and accepted by the group enables us to blend in socially, and more readily accept ourselves for our own “me-ness” that looks a lot like “you-ness” but with a different face. That feeling of belonging where we are, along with the mutual recognition of group membership, helps us to feel comfortable in our own skin (or feathers). We might not be unique, but we are okay with it because we look and act just like the others do.

However, when we leave our adolescence back in the cattails, the importance of group identify fades as we look for ways that help us stand out from the old group—to be a viable contender for future business and professional opportunities.

That works well for us for a decade or two, and then somewhere along the road to success we might feel a spiritual dissatisfaction kick in with our present life.  And it doesn’t seem to matter what material thing we are pursuing or what social rung on the success-ladder we’ve attained. If we aren’t doing what we feel that we were meant to do, we are NOT a happy duck, even if we do have a 6-foot wingspan and can honk like an 18-wheeler on a down-hill run.

Spiritual dissatisfaction can make you feel like it might be time to look for another pond, because something about the present one no longer feels calming and right to you, and you’re pretty tired of sulking over it.

So how do you decide who you really are, and what you are truly meant to do with your life?

Just as there are many paths up the mountain, there are many ways to find yourself and your true purpose for being here in whatever pond you swim. I would suggest that you spend a little quality time with yourself and dig deeply for those answers by feeling the inner peace of meditation to allow your true-self to respond to the questions that you pose, and then journal to document daily the discoveries that you make.pink swan

It matters to know what you really want from your life so that by the end of it, you don’t regret that you never really knew yourself as an awesome, free-spirited SWAN, ….and not just another big, honking duck.

The Place of NO Fear

There is a lot of scary stuff in this world around us—both genuine and imaginary. The news media picks up a little genuine “scary stuff” and pumps it full of hot air until it’s hard to tell the difference between the two by the time it reaches the airwaves.

Then there are the most atrocious TV shows full of ghouls and vampires, and walking dead. One would think we are intentionally living out our nightmares 24/7 for some strange reason. But WHY?

Is this some perverted version of facing our fears? I really don’t know, but I find it very odd how saturated our lives are becoming with fear-based stimuli.

My guess is that we are acting out some base response to the genuine scary stuff that we can’t control in our lives—finding ways to make the unimaginable semi-real enough to deal with it one way or another; even if we can only do it by rainbow like swirlidentifying with a hero or heroine battling those zombie-nasties on the 60-inch screen at the foot of our recliner. Perhaps through those mock-heroes, we also find a way to survive our lives, just like the survivors of those horror shows—some way, somehow, we make it to next week’s episode.

There actually was an original purpose for human’s feeling fear. It was an early-warning survival tactic. It provided the quick spurt of adrenaline into our bloodstream to defend ourselves to the max of our ability, or to run like the dickens to avoid the problem—the fight or flight response.

But in today’s world, and throughout our lives, we face numerous situations that require us to stand our ground, or not be bullied, or to speak up for ourselves and others when it would be much easier to say nothing.

That’s when we have to dig really deep and make the hard choices that reveal so much about whether we view ourselves as life’s victims or as the last, remaining, battered survivors of the “zombie apocalypse”—sometimes you simply have to face down your fears and take a stand against the undead in your life—even if they are only imaginary.

I talk a lot about self-empowerment in my classes, and to me that means taking back your own power and operating from a place of NO fear. It’s amazing how un-empowered many of us presently feel in our world.

Part of the problem may be that we are so used to doing whatever we do, the way we have always done it, that we may not recognize how we are unconsciously giving our own power away: to the demanding boss, to the spoiled kids, to the dominant spouse, to our grousing friends, to the belligerent neighbors, to the cranky clerk in the store, to the pushy attendant at the Quick-Stop-Shop, to the service manager at the car dealership trying to convince us that our car needs more repairs than it really does, etc.

To simply get along in this world (to survive), we learned early on how to accommodate and appease, especially if we were small or more fragile than others; or if we lacked confidence and self-esteem.

From childhood onwards, many of us learned how to dodge and weave around parent accusations, or to avoid direct confrontations; or how to manipulate our benefactors by cowering before them or complementing them, or making them feel even more powerful (and hopefully more beneficent) to our lack of power; because we thought that they, in turn, would protect us, or at least, not harm us further.

But in the very act of giving them our acceptance or allegiance, we conceded our ability to decide our own lives, and determine our own destinies. It isn’t really a surprise to learn that intimidators need acquiescers to function, or they simply cease to matter.

But it also isn’t a surprise to learn that standing your ground and facing down your fears isn’t the easiest thing to do, especially if you are new to doing it.

So perhaps we can try a simple test first before we go all-Rambo on the next person who even scowls at us. Maybe we can practice saying “NO” to the next thing we feel obligated to doing; or saying “NO” to the salesman who insists that we could look much better in the seat of that higher-dollar vehicle than we can comfortably afford; or saying “NO” to something that we know we will later resent doing, if forced into doing it.

Self-empowerment means empowering yourself to take control of your own life, and to stop giving that control over to anyone else who might want to take it from you.

It might seem too simple to be true, but perhaps the actual place of NO fear is just learning to say “NO” to someone else’s expectation for you, and really meaning it.

Into the Forest, Sort Of

Close your eyes (after reading this of course), and imagine yourself standing before a large forest that extends to either side of you as far as you can see. This forest must be “old-world” growth because the trees are huge—as tall as skyscrapers, and you feel so tiny in comparison to them. Here you are, in the presence of giants still existing from another time. These giants may not roam the earth, but they sure knew how to congregate in this area.

As you approach an entrance to the forest, which seems to be a worn path that someone or something has been traveling, you feel a certain apprehension, and you aren’t sure what that is. But the path awaits and there is still much to see, because if you just keep standing on the outside, you’ll never know what is in there.

The prospect of walking among these massive trees that have withstood centuries of weather, winds, forest lightand other calamities—both natural and man-created, is simply too enticing to ignore. You now enter the forest with both the eager expectation of what you might find as you venture in, but yet, there is a small touch of hesitancy at the prospect, because “the FOREST” represents the “great UNKNOWN” –ripe with new discoveries and unexpected dangers.

So, before we go too far venturing into this “unknown,” perhaps we need certain gear to take with us. What might that gear be?  What would you take as you venture into the unknown of your life?

How do you anticipate your needs for exploring “the forest?”  Do you know how long you’ll be in there? Do you plan for a short time exploration, or a long one?

A short time might be an hour or two of hiking around, and then you are back out into the full sun skipping merrily back to civilization and the latest mindless TV viewing.

A long time might be days or weeks of venturing forth into the depths of the unknown, under all kinds of weather for both day and night habitation. So to prep for that, what might you need? Depends on the person, I suppose.

Courage would be first on my list, with determination and perseverance, a close second and third.

Then I’d think about the material-item necessities like matches, water, food, sleeping gear, knife, hatchet, good hiking shoes, mosquito netting, multi-layered clothing, etc. Yeah, …something along those lines.  Now you’re thinking “survival” type gear because you just never know what you might run in to or have to deal with while in there.

But overall, if I didn’t have the first three intangible items on the list—courage, determination and perseverance—I’d probably not even consider going in, because “the forest” is often a symbol for primal life at its untamed extreme. It represents base desires, base needs, and base instincts for survival at all costs. Sometimes it is considered to represent the shadow side of our own nature.

And yet, there is another symbol that the forest represents—it is nature in its most pristine and pure act of creation. It is the earth’s natural bounty filled with life of all kinds, most of which have nothing to do with humans. It is an interconnected eco-system independent of us completely, and that’s probably why the civilized “we” feel so uncomfortable in it. It didn’t used to be an unknown to us. But now it is.

Native Americans have a practice called Vision Quest, where the participant, often a young person, is sent to live off the land by him or herself for 3 days and nights—taking little, if anything along for the duration. It is considered an initiation into adulthood, in its purest sense, and sometimes an invitation to nature spirits to provide help and spirit information to the respectful quester.

The most basic aspect of this time spent alone in the woods, or the desert, or the mountains, or wherever the isolated quest might be, is for facing the unknown. It is to face down our fears.

For the actual Vision Quest participant, it is more than that. It is redeveloping the spiritual connection to the land itself and to the spirits of the land. So, for some, going into the forest may be less like facing the unknown full of dangers and unseen eyes staring back at you; and more like re-establishing that lost link of being just another part of the earth’s creation, interacting with itself in so many different ways.

Going into the forest or facing down our own fears and shadow side, is simply an initiatory aspect of wherever we are on our own spiritual path. And for that, I would always take courage, determination, and perseverance with me before anything else.

But reconnecting to the earth, and feeling a true part of nature itself, requires us only to enter the forest without fear, more so feeling like we are coming home again.

Into the forest, in this sense, is the realization that we never really left it.

Flowing Like a River

We all have difficult times in life—difficult situations, difficult choices, and difficult interactions. Even a river occasionally flows over rocky outcrops and forest debris on its way to the sea.  But most importantly, the river keeps flowing to get there.

That’s what we do throughout our lives, we keep moving forward, over the obstacles, through the disappointments, and past the pain and the losses; we just keep “keepin’ on.” Or that is our best intention—to get to the other side of the issue or the conflict, or get beyond the tremendous feeling of loss from losing someone or something we love.

That’s where the river has an advantage over us in its continuous blue rivernatural flow—it doesn’t keep dragging all those memories and emotional tangles with it. River debris gets shoved to the side or pushed into a pile somewhere, and left there while the river moves onward. It’s the natural rhythm of life, letting go and moving on to new territory and new challenges, leaving the past behind as the evidence of once having been there.

A river definitely knows how to move on—to just BE the flow. Unfortunately for many of us, we may not know how to let go of all that old mental and emotional accumulation still clinging to us—making it difficult to move forward with our lives.

That’s the importance of recognizing what we are still hanging on to, so we are aware of what might be dragging us down or preventing our forward movement if we feel stagnant and blocked.

Again, I’ll mention journaling as a means to get whatever is bothering you out of your head and onto paper, so you can see for yourself what is foremost in your mind and still clogging your thought processes—plugging your flow—preventing you from moving forward.

To truly let go, it helps to know what you need to let go of, and to decide where in your mental filing cabinet you are going to place it—in the “Ancient History/Lessons-Learned” file or the “Still-In-Process/Can’t-Get-Past-it” file. Sometimes that “Can’t-Get-Past-It” stuff is like raw corn mash slow-cooking in the large copper kettle between your ears.

If whatever you are still fermenting in your inner processing vat hasn’t gone the necessary time or boiled long enough to transform itself into more refined wisdom, you may need to re-stoke the flames beneath it to get it there. Wisdom distilled from tough life lessons, flows sweet and pure—untainted by the raw ingredients that created it.

Distilled wisdom—the “Lessons-Learned” aspect, is 100% proof that life is a journey, a continuous river of flow from birth to death, filled with amazing sights and scenery along the way; passing over obstacles and diversions, rolling along as the seasons change: sometimes in massive floods and sometimes in minor trickles, but always moving onward toward the greater waters awaiting it.

That hard-won, distilled wisdom is your life’s reflection staring back at you in the calm, still pool of water at your feet, wavering there with the current’s influx and the outflow, but always still reflecting YOU staring down into it. And that’s what it is meant to do.

Why Would Anyone Want to Be Hypnotized?

I chuckled while writing the title question, because in truth we are being hypnotized most of our waking hours by whatever media device we use, whether we read something, watch something or listen. All forms of mass communication are filled with advertising, which is one of the most blatant forms of persuasive hypnosis that there is.

Here’s a quote from Wikipedia on what ADVERTISING is:

“Advertising …in business is a form of marketing communication used to encourage, persuade, or manipulate an audience (viewers, readers or listeners; sometimes a specific group) to take or continue to take some action.”

So even if you aren’t watching or listening to something during the normal scope of your day, when you walk into a grocery store, have you ever noticed that certain displays are set directly in your path; and the aisles that were once on the right-hand side of the store, now are on the left-hand side, forcing you to alter your habitual path for those few regular items that you always need?

And have you ever noticed that the name brands choose product names to trigger your best childhood memories, or to inspire a sense of virility, or femininity depending on your inclination, or they make claims using shocking colors and catchy slogans, of how a product will help you to look more vibrant and alive, or to be more attractive to others?

Marketers are getting pretty sophisticated now by gathering more and more of your personal data, so they can even predict what you might want, or even worse, they can predict your weaknesses to push something at you that you may not need but that appeals to a less-secure part of you. “Not popular—well BE popular with this.” “Spending too much time alone? Find romance online—just a click-away.”

So overall, I’m sure advertising hypnosis isn’t that unfamiliar to you, but “ethical hypnosis” might be.

I practice the latter one—ethical hypnosis.  My goal is to help people make the changes in their lives that they truly wish to make. If someone isn’t happy about some aspect of her life and yearns for a light blue swan pic w reflectionbetter future while holding some idea of what that better future might entail, I can help her get there.

Everyone has inner resources: inner strengths, inner courage, and inner determination to realize their full potential. I just help you to find them, remove the subconscious obstacles that might be blocking your own progress, and let YOU redirect yourself back toward your true goals.

My role in your change process is always the same: I’m NOT your goal or destination determiner—YOU are. Whether it is addressing the basic issues (like phobias, fears, challenges, or life-style changes) using standard-treatment hypnosis, or during past-life explorations (which might also address those very same issues), YOU decide your future goals and destinations.  I am only the tour guide that delivers you there, and helps you to maximize the experience.

So in answer to the title question of: Why would anyone want to be hypnotized?  I would say that anyone who wanted to enact genuine, positive change in his or her life might want to be hypnotized to help clear the path for that desired change to develop.

Hypnosis doesn’t just make desired change easier. It makes that change more likely to happen.