Category: Q&A

Writing Your First Line: The Shamanic Induction of Storytelling


I was asked by the curators of Books by Women to write a guest blog. Writing Your First Line: The Shamanic Induction of Storytelling is a brief exposé not only on why I read, but why I choose to be a writer and how these dovetail into my spiritual path.

Intentional Insights is a Q&A column inviting you to look inside yourself. Submit questions regarding a brief Soul Reading, spiritual healing, paranormal experiences, or shamanism, to Kelley at soulintentarts dot com, or to schedule a full-length Soul Reading. Intentional Insights is a production of Soul Intent Arts, LLC, © 2011 All Rights Reserved.
Read more of Kelley’s writing at and on The Huffington Post. Order a signed copy of Gift of the Dreamtime – Awakening to the Divinity of Trauma.

You Don’t Call, You Don’t Write… The Quiet Dead

As psychopomp is a critical role of my personal and professional shamanic path, I’m often approached by those who want me to communicate with deceased loved ones. In some cases a different scenario arises and I’m asked, “Why doesn’t my deceased loved one visit me?”

My immediate response is, “How do know your loved one doesn’t?” There is an assumption that because we are emotionally close to a deceased loved one that we are open to and will recognize a visit from that dear soul. It’s an understandable assumption, as our culture generally sensationalizes and romanticizes interactions with the deceased. In reality, it is often because we are so emotionally involved with the deceased that we don’t or can’t perceive their presence. Sometimes when loved ones are still actively grieving loss, they are too distracted to observe spiritual activity. In their haze, they miss subtle messages that a trained intuitive would intercept, or they are holding out for a grand entrance when a gentle presence is right in front of them. Consequently, sometimes when the deceased sense that their loved ones are not moving on, they do not visit them on purpose. The inability of living or deceased loved ones to accept death causes all involved to stagnate. Often the dead realize that their presence may only encourage the living loved one’s grief instead of soothe it.

Emotional involvement isn’t the only impediment to visitation from beyond the grave. Whether due to fear of the paranormal or the exclusion of such a possibility due to religious path or life view, these can be long-held beliefs that prevent spirit interaction. Often people haven’t really considered the possibility of interacting with a spirit until someone they love dies. Again, in that dynamic lies an assumption that the emotional bond will in and of itself reveal an active connection beyond the veil, and in this case trump institutionalized beliefs. I know it is entirely possible for someone who does not believe in spirits to have a spontaneous change of heart. However, in these cases there is still more than an emotional bond at work. Our consciousness is organized into beliefs and personal truths so that we can make sense of data coming in. At any point that we choose, we can change our beliefs, thus change the organization of our consciousness. In the case of those who prior eschewed spiritual possibilities let alone contact, it’s not likely that their beliefs will spontaneously reorganize to suddenly allow the perception of a visitation from a deceased loved one. If you fear spirits or have rigid beliefs that oppose paranormal life, the likelihood of experiencing such after the death of a loved one is slim. It is possible, though not probable. Naysayers who do experience unexpected spiritual interaction have generally gone through a rampant restructuring of their beliefs.

Another reason that the dead don’t visit is simply because they have no need to. They’re happy. They’re peaceful and they have genuinely grown beyond the concerns of the formed realm. It doesn’t mean they don’t love us or have abandoned us. It doesn’t mean you will never see them again. In fact, most of us repeat experiences of ourselves with the same groups of souls. It just means they’ve moved on to the next point of their destiny.

So what’s the magickal combination? Why do other people have full-on conversations with your deceased loved ones when you don’t seem able to? Remember that people who work with spirits likely demonstrated some innate ability to do so early on in life and/or had a life-changing experience that opened them to their ability, and have dedicated their lives to the skills and boundaries of that work. It’s not random or trivial. They devoted themselves to learning to read the signals and communication of spirits in subtle and profound ways. Moreover, they do so without an emotional charge. They are not emotionally involved with their work, and that enables them to stretch the limits of their ability. To people who interact with spirits doing so no different than interacting with the living. Venturing into the realm of the dead is as common place as walking into a crowded restaurant. In short, it’s not a big deal to them. They will it so, and so it is. Through that accomplishment, it’s always a miracle.

The thing is, there isn’t anything special about people who experience spirits and those who don’t. The only difference between those who do and those who don’t is willingness and the taming of cultural domestication to see life in a fuller, less prescribed way. If you are curious about how to interact with spirits, connect with a trusted professional who can mentor you in doing so. If you’re not but still want to interact with deceased loved ones, find someone who can do so and know that your bond is as intact as ever across the veil and it’s a blessing to have such. Moreover, find etheric ways to deepen your relationship to your loved ones now, and the opening for that greater interaction will always be there.

The Tribe of the Modern Mystic – Setting Spiritual Boundaries with Challenging Energies

In a recent discussion around disruptive energetic activity in someone’s house a question arose that often comes up in such dynamics: What do you do when a visiting energy doesn’t honor boundaries?

Many people at some point encounter energetic or spiritual activity in their home or workspace that they find disruptive, disturbing, or flat out frightening. Most often, how that energy is dealt with determines how well the dynamic finds balance. I’m careful to distinguish “energetic” from “spiritual.” Sometimes the activity in a space is due to odd fluctuations in the etheric field and has nothing to do with spirits. In this case, balancing the elements of the space can bring relief. Likewise, there can be a spiritual presence that readily exhibits a personality or humanoid traits, such as a female form or voice. Ultimately such disturbances indicate a different kind of energy out of balance and don’t carry a “good” or “bad” judgement. They just indicate that something needs attention. For most people it is the element of surprise that is bothersome. This is true whether the disturbance is another person coming up behind them or an insect popping out. Once they get their bearings on the situation they manage it by asserting a more suitable way to approach, or by determining if that particular bug can roam freely in the house. With the boundary set, things calm. It’s no different with spiritual energies. In the case of a spiritual interruption, we set boundaries, such as, “It’s OK if you’re here, though I allow no physical contact,” or “It’s OK that you’re here, though please no surprise visits.” What happens when the energy doesn’t hold up its end of the peace?

In order to understand why an energy doesn’t honor a boundary, let’s examine what that energy may be and its reason for making itself known to start with. There are many scenarios under which spiritual activity happens, and I can only touch on a few here. Figuring out what sort of visitor is present is key to resolving any unrest it causes. Some visitors warn about dangerous situations. Once the danger is removed, the energy moves on and disruption stops. Others are enticed into a peaceful environment and simply want to enjoy it. Some don’t know they’re deceased and don’t realize they need to move on. Others perished traumatically and are locked in a PTSD dynamic, acting out their demise until someone understands that’s what’s happening and helps them move on. In some cases a paranormal disturbance can indicate trouble in the home. The phenomenon referred to as “poltergeist” activity isn’t necessarily a spirit visitor at all, but an unconscious projection of a person in the household (usually a child) who has been traumatized and doesn’t have the communication skills to express their distress.

Spirit VisitorsAnother frequently occurring phenomenon is the visitation of spirit guides (or as some call them, guardian angels), who shake up the environment, particularly in the case of children, budding intuitives, or empaths who refuse to acknowledge their Other sight. Even in the case of a visiting guide–beings we often assume to be gentle angelic creatures–we question their need to sometimes be forceful or frighten us. Sometimes we have received gradual small signals that we may have ignored or just didn’t process as spirit communication, so a bigger display of need finally gets our attention. Another way to look at it is by considering that spirits are beings from a foreign country and they don’t speak the language, or don’t know the customs. They don’t know that disembodied voices in the night scare us, or that dropping onto the mattress while we’re sleeping is a bit rude. Again, that element of surprise prevents us from perceiving friendly interactions, or at least misconstrued actions with good intentions. Hence, this is the reason the accepted historic accounts with angels always begin with, “Fear not!” Moving past that initial shock is what determines whether we get the memo.

All of that said, when we have such experiences an opening for them has to be created somewhere. Sure we can feel so terrified by spirit interaction that we run screaming from it and never look back, and no such contact happens again. The cultural myth of “fire in the head” exists for a reason, though I think it’s somewhat misunderstood. We’ve all read legends of the old man who heard voices and went crazy, or the young girl who was visited by spirits that wouldn’t leave her alone. The message handed down has been that if we don’t accept the task of becoming a seer or conduit of the spiritual world in some way that bad things will happen. I think it’s more benevolent than that. In my experience we don’t have to take on the whole arena of what a spiritual encounter may mean, even ones that are very personal. We don’t have to quit our jobs and move to an ashram in India or suddenly become vegetarian and take herbalism classes. It may mean that kind of sweeping life change for some people. What it demands without question is that we honor that we had an experience outside of our understanding, that we allow that one little interaction to open our understanding of All Things. That’s all. In that light when we have a challenging spiritual experience and we refuse to acknowledge it, chances are the environment will become more restless, not because we are cursed or are refusing the leadership of a spirit guide, but because we are refusing some wisdom to light within ourselves. This is the reason that instead of dismissing energetic adversity we open a dialogue with it. This is why instead of shutting down that part of ourselves we set boundaries for how we can accept it. We do so not because we need to control the unseen, but because we have had a spiritual opening, an opportunity to learn something about ourselves.

Still, what if we go through all of these things and our visitor is still being obnoxious? I tell clients to keep two things in mind. The first is that All Things are connected, so when we speak from our truth, All Things actively participating in that connection recognize that fact and honor our needs. Create the habit of observing and regrouping when caught offguard–seen or unseen–and set a boundary not out of shocked fear, but from personal truth. It works. The second thing I tell people when a visitor isn’t honoring their boundary is, because All Things are connected, consider what All Things is trying to communicate something important. It may be about us, about the energy, or about the environment. There is a reason it is persisting, the least of which is to be merely bothersome. A final consideration is if the experience has traumatized the individual it’s very hard to find a place of balance from which to set boundaries. Activity will likely persist until the PTSD of the individual can be released.

In our western culture we don’t have the community Crone sitting by the campfire scrying out the best way to do this year’s crop planting or helping us make sense of experiences that don’t fit our norm. For this reason I actively teach people how to soften their experience of Other and to learn to integrate it into their lives. Western culture is the only thriving population on the planet that regards paranormal activity as astounding, riveting, or disturbing. All other cultures have integrated it into their experience of everyday. As a result of our separation from our spiritual perception, we panic when it seeks to reunite with us. I first met my spirit guide when I was about twelve or thirteen. I woke over years finding him standing at the foot of my bed, or at the end of the hall when I got up for water in the night. All he did was stand there, but that was all it took to terrify me. I didn’t learn who he was for another fifteen years. For that reason through private sessions, classes, and Distance Mystery School, I’ve committed to create a new tribe of support for children and adults whose lives are blessed with such experiences and an uncontainable inner knowing. I’ve committed to create The Tribe of the Modern Mystic.

As you feel led, I’ll be waiting by the fire.

Healing the PTSD of Paranormal Probing

This week’s inquiry is a comment from my last article Paranormal Investigating – Troubleshooting the Middle World. “Kelley, you said “Should you find residuals from the encounter with these spirits – things like paranoia, troublesome thought or behavior patterns that disrupt your daily life – these are indications that your PTSD switch for paranormal experiences has been flipped on and you should seek help in turning it off.” I dabbled stupidly with the Ouija board as a kid and other things before I realized the seriousness of it. Now, decades later it seems that something may have remained. How can I turn it off? Thanks, Carolyn.”

Thanks for reading and contributing, Carolyn. The absolute best thing to do if you feel PTSD or anything unfinished from these experiences is to find a shaman to help you. I can do this work remotely, but if you let me know your location perhaps I can connect you with someone with whom you can work in person if that is preferred.

Traumatic experience with the paranormal could be as benign as the shock of being told information you weren’t prepared to know or that no one else could know. It could be as jarring as seeing objects move, hearing voices, seeing visitors… Fright can even come days later in some signal, synchronicity, or dream pointing back to the spirit interaction. The definition of ‘trauma’ varies person-to-person. The point is you know you’ve been traumatized if you can’t step out of the fear stemming from the original interaction.

Generally speaking, there are three layers to the aftermath of such spirit interactions. First is turning off the switch, which I call rebalancing your etheric field. Second is removing any errant life force that may be clinging to yours. Third is healing focused on balancing the energy shifts from all of the above.

There is no shortcut to finding the place in your etheric field that is vulnerable to the trauma and rebalancing it. Where it’s located is unique to the individual and the experience. If you are adept at working with the etheric field you can do this yourself, though I would still recommend allowing someone else to do it. The life impact of this kind of imbalance bears being thorough. There are many ways to balance the etheric field, all of which require some knowledge of life force and how to move it.  At this stage, the original trauma is healed, as are emotions that came with it.

Removing unnecessary energies attached to yours is called by many names depending on culture and circumstance—depossession, extraction, releasement. The state of having unneeded life force attached to yours is not good or bad. It’s not light or dark. There are no such judgments in shamanic work. What exists is a state in which you are not functioning at your desired ability and benevolent work can be done to re-establish balance.

Like attracts like. When you experience something that puts you into a panicked, anxious, or terrified state, you attract energy of that same state. Psychological models call this PTSD, or being “shell-shocked.” Spiritually speaking PTSD is recognized when you attract people who express the same feelings, situations reinforcing those feelings, or spirits/energies of similar trauma. You think the distress and building panic are yours, when in reality like attraction is merely exacerbating it. This scenario constitutes a spiritual emergency. Until you direct healing to the trigger for the trauma the anxiety and panic keep playing out and/or attracting more of the same. This is the spiritual truth of any trauma, not just those of paranormal origin.

After balancing the etheric field to restore calmness and removing unnecessary life force, healing is directed to all levels of your being, to help changes from the etheric and spiritual work to gently ground.

How About Demons? by Dr. Felicitas Goodman

How About Demons? by Dr. Felicitas Goodman

That’s it, in a not-so-brief nutshell. If you want to understand “the switch”–what it is, how it functions, and how the spiritual technology of managing it crosses cultures and time, the definitive work in my opinion is How About Demons? by Felicitas D. Goodman.

Be well, Carolyn.

Paranormal Investigating – Troubleshooting the Middle World

Kelley, I’ve been dabbling in the Salt Lake paranormal scene. Myself, a friend, and a medium-in-training went to a haunted place that is said to have demons. I have an electronic device that lets disembodied entities speak phonetically. After some questions about what spirits were with us and to see if they knew who we were (they knew my friend), the medium then said she got a feeling of dread and fear. When I asked the spirits if they knew who I was, they said, “Death.” One EVP (electronic voice phenomena) said what we think was, “Don’t talk to him.” Another later said, “Hide.” The medium said that the ghosts were uneasy and unwilling to communicate, something not that unusual unless a “demon” entity is involved. I’m aware of previous manifestations of myself that were very affected by discarnate energies, and the degree to which I had carried that into my current life. Is it really possible for spirits to fear me because of my history? Was I being called Death or being warned of my death? Thanks, J.

Thanks for your note, J. It’s good to hear from you again. J and I have worked together before; thus, some personal info is omitted from this inquiry. As we say in the computer programming world, so spirit communication follows the same rule: Garbage in, garbage out. Thus begins your first lesson in understanding the Middle World.

Spirit Board via

Spirit Board via

The differences between mediumship and what I do as a shaman are intention and location. While shamans can act as mediums, they cast a much wider net. Generally speaking, most cultures of shamanism have a trifold cosmology, as in Upper World, Middle and Lower–none of which correspond with the assumed Abrahamic counterparts. The Middle World is the spirit layer of the Earth realm. It’s the place where souls become stuck when they die and don’t move on, when they have unfinished business. It’s the place of earthly astral travel and lucid dreaming. This is also part of the layer where faeries are, Nature spirits, devas. The kind of spirit communication that you described happens in the Middle World, which is generally the only layer most psychics and mediums access.


What that means is when you connect with spirits in the Middle layer, they’re most often not guides. They’re not beings committed to working for your benefit. They may be higher entities or lightbeings, but that’s where intention comes in. I teach a class on connecting safely with spirits in the Middle World according to your intentions and ability to navigate the spirit realms. Without a clear intention, as in just venturing out to see the spiritual manifestation of or in a space–particularly one you consider to be “haunted”–you ask for garden variety, you get garden variety. You have no control over with whom you connect. For many studying shamanism, the Middle World can be the trickiest to navigate simply because it is so close to our own reality. From the time we begin to explore the Middle World we are emotionally involved, and the kinds of spirits who hang out there know it. Boundaries are imperative.

The short version is that discarnate human spirits in the Middle World are usually there for a reason, the least of which is that they are not well. Generally speaking, souls and consciousness seek growth and widening their awareness. Staying stuck in one place, in form or out, is not part of the plan, and the state of being stuck often leads to suffering even if the spirit’s life and death were peaceful. Any communication you have with such souls is going to reflect their state of being. In the event that you have similar buttons in your psyche regarding that state of being, they will be pushed.

That is what I feel happened in your experience. Because of your past brushes with intentionally adverse souls, you have significant buttons around PTSD, particularly PTSD that is the result of a harmful paranormal interaction. The moral of that story is that you can’t just go unmitigated into spirit communication–even as the passenger. You really need a set intention and some education on what the varying options are in spirit communication, as well as how to connect with the kind of spirits who bring something meaningful to your life and quite possibly you to theirs. My sense is that the spirits you encountered were mirroring your latent fear of yourself, not expressing fear of or for you. Low vibration entities can’t originate much, but they can exacerbate your fears. They truly are parasitic life forces that draw on the strongest vibe nearest them. If your vibe of fear of your shadows in your past was strongest, that is what you received back in communication from them.

This en masse modern trend of paranormal investigators that just pop in and stir up trouble then wonder why they’re chronically sick, why they need to sleep with the lights on, why they’re uncomfortable around large groups of people… amuses me. This etheric tapping on the fishbowl is the opposite of bridgebuilding in the arena of soul work, and is the reason that I do not under any circumstances support garden variety spirit communication. If you (or your friends) don’t know what you’re doing, don’t risk being unable to undo it. Should you find residuals from the encounter with these spirits–things like paranoia, troublesome thought or behaviour patterns that disrupt your daily life–these are indications that your PTSD switch for paranormal experiences has been flipped on and you should seek help in turning it off.

Be well, J.

This discussion continues in  Healing the PTSD of Paranormal Probing.

Into the Woods, Running to Dreams

Kelley I have so enjoyed reading your deep and inspirational insights that I seek them, myself. I have reached a life goal, in that I can finally support myself by doing what I love. My eldest child has a three-year-old and a four-month-old, whom I am adore. I love being a Grandmother yet I feel tied down, watching them while she works. She seeks a full time job and she wants me to babysit. I love these kids so much. I wish my daughter could stay home with them and I could help by just filling in, but she says she will never improve her life if she doesn’t start a career now. Am I just being selfish and getting my priorities wrong by not placing the children before my dreams? I want to do the right thing, not something I will regret. Thank you, Trendle.

Thanks for your kinds words and inquiry, Trendle. When I call in the lightbeings who lovingly support you as well as the aspects of yourself who may speak, your High Self comes and does something peculiar. In the sand circle surrounding us, she draws a tiny square then a line out from it, which connects another tiny square to another line, to another tiny square… She does this until the entire circle holding about a hundred beings is filled with connected tiny squares. I realize that she is telling me that you have followed the signals of your life. You have allowed yourself to flow from one point of opportunity to another and have benefited from each point, as well as from allowing the intuition of rightful action. Starting with the first square that your High Self drew, I step to the second, then the third, until I trace the entire labyrinth to its end. When I come to the very last square I find myself standing at the edge of the sand circle, staring into the dark forest.

You can’t turn back. Whatever is in the forest–adventure, hard work, enlightenment, briers–is yours to pursue. There is nowhere else to go, and you can’t stand still. It’s not your nature to stand still. And for right now in your life, watching your grandchildren fulltime would be exactly that. Your grandchildren won’t prosper if you aren’t following your bliss. Likewise, they won’t flourish if their mother isn’t. Your daughter has a dependence on you, and she won’t initially respond well to having to cultivate her own intuitive navigation. The thing is, despite that your keen ability to trust your steps has shielded her somewhat, she was watching your every move, just as her kids watch you both now. Stand in your power and assert your need that she make other childcare arrangements, and she will eventually stand in her power, too. She knows how to connect the squares and lines of her own path, she just doesn’t believe that she can do it on her own. She lacks your confidence, and she won’t find it under your wing.

Part of your daughter’s transition into motherhood is also the bold step into matriarchy–the willing acknowledgment that she will eventually be your family’s wise woman. There must be someone for you to give your wisdom to, someone who can carry that mantle as well as master the range of skills needed to be matriarch of the family. Your daughter will not acquire this wisdom without stretching, a lot. You know that she is capable, but she has to believe that she is. She will need encouragement, but set your emotional and logistic boundaries for what you can give and dedicate your energy to thriving on your path. Let her know that you need her to support where you are in your life, as well.

You can and will watch the children, though it can’t be your full obligation to do so. Approach stepping away with gratitude to your daughter, thankfulness that they are in your life and that you are allowed such precious moments. Know that you are not leaving her in a bind, but that by taking command of your own destiny, you are giving her the room to do the same. All of your lives will blossom with new life because of the changes you undertake to stand in your authentic self.

Be well, Trendle.

Unspoken Expectations – Falling in Love All Over Again, and Again…

Kelley, after a long struggle the man I’ve been always attached to finally made the big step – he left his family and we are now officially a couple. I am now worried that he will treat me as he did his ex-wife. He is very flirty and needs lots of attention. I have started being jealous, something I never was before. What shall I do? He says I am his love and that he will spend the rest of his life with me. Can I trust him? Does he really love me? He is a Capricorn and I am an Aquarius. Many thanks from good old Europe. -MM.

Thank you for your note, MM. My feeling about this relationship is that you had doubts regarding his fidelity before he left his family to be with you. Your hunch was spot-on. This man loves you. He’s a good guy. He is as committed to you as he can be, but I don’t feel that he’s wired for monogamy. I don’t know if that encompasses emotional or physical monogamy–they are not necessarily the same thing. Some people aren’t wired for one, the other, or both, and that fact doesn’t negate that they can be deeply in love and maintain committed relationships. In fact, my feeling is that he very much loves the security of a relationship, despite his need to always feel that he is continually falling in love. In the polyamory community that is called NRE – New Relationship Energy. I am doing this Reading for you, so beyond that one observation of him I can’t comment on his intuitive motivations. From a matter-of-fact standpoint, I can tell you that some people thrive on that early stage of a relationship and constantly seek to start over to sustain that feeling. Where he falls on that spectrum I don’t know, but it is something for you to consider.

That you are both energetically different is highly relevant. You are group oriented, in that you enjoy a sense of moving and combining with another or other energies to some common outcome. You see this as a point of bonding and a way for individual life force to remain unique yet join forces with a greater energy pool. He has the same overall need for collective interaction, but where you see yourself merging with a life force that becomes bigger and bigger, he sees himself as a hub that moves between different energy pools. I can see how that important yet subtle distinction may be lost among what are otherwise compatible attributes.

Radical Honesty by Brad Blanton

Radical Honesty by Brad Blanton

Again, I can’t read him. I can’t tell you if he is trustworthy because I don’t know your definition of trust. This is the point at which your dialogue with him has to shift from, “Can I trust you?” to “What is your definition of commitment?” From “Are you attracted to that other woman?” to “What parameters can we agree upon are appropriate for expressing attraction to another person?” These often seem like questions that have assumed, if not intuitive answers, but they don’t. We don’t all have the same definition of ‘commitment’, or ‘flirting’, or ‘appropriate behaviour.’ In the majority of relationships these are the very questions that were not asked until someone had already been hurt. I highly recommend reading Brad Blanton’s Radical Honesty – How to Transform Your Life by Telling the Truth. Blanton encourages you to tell the truth in expressing your needs, but also expresses how to deal healthily with a loved one who doesn’t. Do not let your expectations remain unspoken. You have to be willing to ask these and other questions on your heart, and convey to him that you want to hear the truth, not what he thinks you want to hear. Likewise, you have to be prepared to accept what he tells you as his truth, and be prepared to act in accordance with your own.

Be well, MM.

Renaissance Woman Meets the Age of Aquarius

Kelley, I am very impressed by your thoughtful and interesting answers to readers’ questions. I’ve done a lot of different kinds of spiritual work that has helped me tremendously with personal questions and dilemmas. My spiritual work utilizes meditation and guide(s), which is why I responded deeply to your insight. I have a nagging mystery that seems to have no clear answer or finality. My dilemma is the question of joining with a true soulmate or twin soul for a solid, long partnership. Until now folks seem to fall away or are not solid enough to form anything far-reaching, even though I felt they could be and I was ready. At this point in my life I feel ridiculous trying, so at least I’m not emotional about it. Am I to traverse this life as a solitary, without sharing in a beautiful, life-enriching partnership with a man? Or is my path to go fully into healing work and lead a celibate lifestyle? Thank-you for your insight. Shannon

Thanks for your praise and inquiry, Shannon. What I see straight away is that you are functioning at a very high level, etherically, though you’re not attracting potential lovers who are. Your chakra system and etheric field look great, but more than healthy, they are wide and strong. This is a good thing, frankly a rare thing to see. No doubt it is the result of your self-work and is supported by your strong personality and sense of self.

Taktshang Monastery, Bhutan

Taktshang Monastery, Bhutan

You hit it dead-on when you asked about a life of celibacy, in that a monastic way of living has been the way you have maintained your high level of functioning in other manifestations of yourself. Your lineage in the formed plane has most often been one of spiritual servitude, and to be able to consistently provide to your community, you set yourself apart. You formed intimate relationships, but not ones of a sexually bonded nature. One of the things that the Age of Aquarius ushers out is the correlation that higher consciousness requires isolation. In reality it probably is easier to focus on personal growth without the distraction of interpersonal relationships, and that choice is always available. However, moving from the Age of Pisces, we are leaving behind the notion of “I” and that only cultural elites are permitted the station of spiritual leader. Our communities, our life force, and our minds are not organized for divisive spirituality anymore, which is one reason the congregations of major religions are diminishing. Now it is our charge not only to move beyond the emphasis of spiritual awareness for self growth, but that we do so amongst each other. We can no longer cloister our the pursuit of personal truths behind silent walls, or cloak our bodies to separate and hide the deeply spiritual sensuality of our physical temples. We can no longer save humanity sitting at the elevated vantage point on the top of the hill. We must walk with each other. We are whole packages now, and that’s how we must live.

What does this have to do with you finding Mr. Soul Complement? Everything. You have a legacy of separating in order to maintain the level of etheric balance you have achieved. You no longer want to separate, and in fact deeply yearn to bond. Rest assured there is no tradeoff. You do not have to give up your balance to acquire a soul love. All you have needed is to make the connection that you have carried into this manifestation the pattern that in the past you had to choose. In your spiritual work now, allow your Nature. All That You Are knows what you need, and now you need a spiritual complement. Infuse the statement, “I allow my Nature,” behind everything you do. If you feel led to do releasing work around the pattern of having to choose, do so. My feeling is that just reading this and making that connection will release the pattern. The new mantra will adjust your life force as it needs, to attract what will be right and endearing for you.

Be with and be well, Shannon.

Lightworkers – Good Enough for Government Work

Kelley, I am writing to ask about my career. With an Ivy League MBA, I found myself in the midst of my Saturn return. For the past seven years, my career has hit rock bottom. After graduating, I was in a miserable job, which I quit despite having just bought a condo. Subsequently, I was unemployed for two years and just managed to survive based on the kindness of my father. For the last three years, I have worked at a company where I am both underutilized and underpaid. A while back, I saw a glimmer of light. I finally received an invitation to interview for my dream job–financial services in not-for-profit and government organizations–however, I didn’t received an offer. I am frustrated and confused. Is this a sign that I am to give up my career aspirations? Is it a sign of good things to come? I have struggled for so long and would appreciate any insight into what you see for me professionally. Annie

Raffaello Santi's Justice

Raffaello Santi's Justice

Thanks for your note, Annie. The thing I see vividly is that you are trying to fit a square peg into a round hole. Specifically, you have a particular ideal in the work you want to do that doesn’t widely exist in the industry you seek, right now. This is not personal, but collective. You are seeking to do a kind of compassionate work that is not being supported in the current dynamic of your field. That is not to say that it isn’t there, but it’s the minority. You want to do good things, and there are minimal Good Thing Doer job openings. The economic climate is not supporting them. The drive of organizations who seek to do good things are struggling to stay afloat in such a way that they have to do some not so good things to remain viable. Because of that, even becoming affiliated with such a helper agency often doesn’t bring the satisfaction it once would have. Almost everyone is operating on a fine line between light and shadow to stay in operation right now, and that ambivalence really bothers you. It should, but it’s not going away anytime soon, for any of us. We are living at a border time in our consciousness and socio/cultural development, and that is being reflected clearly through professional, philosophical, and collective upheaval.

Not knowing your birth sign it’s hard to say, but generally speaking, your Saturn Return has been about finding the small places in which you can make a difference while tempering the ego that wants to make a big splash. I don’t mean you have strived for wide public recognition, but you have set your sights on helping a large quantity of people, when the current the reality dictates you stay focused on the way you approach helping. The etheric environment of our plane now has to work in minuscule ways to shine light. The focus isn’t on dazzling shadows or uplifting glaring holes of doom, but highlighting small cracks, reading the reflections glinting off well-hidden but strategically placed gems. This reading of signs in your industry is what I literally see you doing. You at the center, pulling together your industry’s unique code, scattered bits and pieces saying what it says it does, what it does, and how it actually does it. They don’t match. Part of the system doesn’t want them to match, part of the system doesn’t care if they match, and another part of it doesn’t understand why its efforts evoke no synergy. You have focused on trying to make it work, when it can’t. All of your education has been in the old system and how to keep patching it. That dynamic is over and we are moving into a new one. Your real job now is to keep your eyes and ears open for those signals, read them with your higher knowledge, and be one of those creating the new way—the system that really works. You are the one who sees the discrepancies and retrieves the grey area to some sensible wisdom.

Needless to say, there isn’t a job title or description for what you are capable of. This reading of signs and interpreting them to some widely productive end will be what you do because you choose to, regardless of your job. This is a cooperative effort. More than finding a dream job, you are changing the way your industry works.

For what it’s worth, yes, the etheric rug was pulled from under you and a lot of other people who genuinely plodded their educational and career courses to be career in-the-system lightworkers. Many people went into professions they felt would help them fulfill their spiritual purpose in helping others, only to find that the system they dedicated to learning how to heal changed, and keeps changing. You will not hone a skill to address or heal a specific kind of wound in the system, but learn an acquired knowledge base to keep adapting the healing.

Thank you, Annie.

Mothering Twins, Healing the Self

Kelley, I’m a single mom of six-year-old twin girls, whom I adore. Lately I’ve been feeling overwhelmed with single motherhood. Their father is minimally involved, emotionally and financially. I’m feeling the brunt of parenthood, which is especially difficult for me at the holidays. I am on a spiritual journey which is comforting but I also would like a life partner. I’ve dated since my divorce 3 years ago but the situations have all ended disastrously. Is there anything you can tell me as far as steps I can take to find romantic love? Is that in my future? Thanks so much! G

Thanks for your note, G. Having twins myself, I understand what kind of pressure you’ve been under, and I commend your hard work. Your daughters are nearing the age to take command of their spiritual wills. From infancy (and possibly, in utero, depending on when the soul decides to enter the form) until about the age of nine, parents are custodians of their children’s spiritual wellbeing. Ideally this means caretaking them not just physically, emotionally, and mentally, but also in how they manifest their souls into form, helping them stand in their power, to speak their truth, to connect with All Things, ect, so that as they emerge spiritually independent in the earth plane they go forward confidently, whole, and well. At six, your daughters know they are spiritual beings and are at the point of identifying themselves as individuals with unique life purposes and desires. You, particularly as a single mother of twins, expend a lot of your energy helping them accomplish these desires. You still hold much of their grounding for them and serve as their spiritual and energetic protector—and will for a few more years. This level of soul parenting takes a toll on your personal freedom, literally by forcing you to be more in your lower chakras.

Monument to the Single Mother by Elca Branman

My sense is that you are a fairly balanced person, elementally speaking. Some people are naturally more in their upper chakras, some in their lower ones, some strike a nice balance throughout. I don’t feel that you were upended by pregnancy and new motherhood by a radical energy shift in that way (women not used to being in their lower chakras are a bit shell-shocked from that alone, postpartum). What I see is that you have cared for two new little ones alone, and that has depleted you energetically. All women experience this depletion to some degree after every birth, just as all women are naturally more in their lower chakras the first few years of their children’s lives. The lower chakras are the earthly chakras. They make us very aware of our surroundings, of tactile senses, of the drive to protect, hunt, create space… as Nature intended. In other words, it’s the state of being exactly opposite that of seeking new soul love.

Ideally when we’re allowing a soul partner to enter, we’re in our best, most balanced shape, etherically, and on all levels. Realistically, we want such a partner, regardless of circumstance. Romantic love is available to you, G; however, other things need to come first. Your life force is discombobulated from all it’s been through and it’s not attracting the kind of partner you crave. Until you get a bit more energetic support for yourself, it can’t. At present, you attract suitors who resonate with the erratic energy of the last few years, and their behaviour toward you reflects that. You must address the fatigue that single motherhood has introduced to your life force, preferably through some form of chakra balancing or energy work. I don’t see any particular problematic area, just a general lethargy that needs revitalizing. You need this for yourself, but also, without standing in your power as fully as you can, your daughters won’t learn to, and you won’t attract your best match in a soul love. Take time to focus healing energy and work on yourself with a trusted practitioner, and consider it a reward well earned. The benefits will be a more empowered you, daughters modeling a dazzling female lead, and your pick of soulful equals in love.

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