My dear friend and healer Intuitive Belle just had me on her YouTube channel for a discussion about balancing your spiritual practice with daily life, and about spirituality in general. It was a lot of fun and definitely something new for me.
When I first had my experience of God, I truly believed I was going crazy. I was not raised to believe that another side of life existed and was ready to check myself into the hospital. But several things gave me pause. One, my experience was beautiful, and it made me feel very joyful and very peaceful. Two, I met and talked with people who were conversant in the spiritual world and found it completely ordinary that something like that would happen to a person.
It became more and more okay for me to accept the reality of a spiritual world as I accepted my experience. The bigger work was learning that the spiritual world was not more important than the physical world, but equally so. We are here in the physical world to live out our lives on the earth. Guidance from the spiritual world makes that process more joyful and much easier.
Healing means to be made whole. When we talk about healing, we talk about feeling better in our bodies, our minds, and our hearts. Some say that healing spiritually will heal a person at many levels, including physically. It’s a philosophy I’ve grappled with a lot and one that I’ve seen happen in my life and read about in others. Anita Moorjani, an author and teacher I greatly admire, was healed of cancer in her NDE experience by reconnecting to God, and writes bravely and beautifully about her experiences.
I’ve also seen the opposite, where I’ve had illnesses that couldn’t possibly have been healed without medicine. I needed medicine to get better, and I was grateful for modern medicine’s advances. I have friends on both sides of this philosophy, and some, like me, rest somewhere in the middle. Prayer, energy healing, and changing one’s thoughts can be a powerful impetus for healing, and at the same time, western medicine can be life-saving. I think the difficulty comes in choosing one philosophy exclusively.
I was raised to only take medicine and had ample access to all kinds of prescriptions and medical care as a child of a physician, but I never knew how to take my spiritual state into account when I was healing. Eventually, in my quest to heal, and having exhausted the western medical model, I began exploring the spiritual side of life, and found many practices that truly helped me heal. I learned to heal my energy, how to eat a healthier diet, and practices to restore my heart to light and to love, which I believe healed my endometriosis, anxiety and insomnia.
That was a big departure from my childhood and one that I’m truly grateful for. But that doesn’t mean that western medicine has no place in healing! It must be a balance. I truly believe that.
What are your favorite healing practices? Where do you fall on the spectrum?
Perhaps you are longing for an experience of the other side, or maybe you’ve had one already. Perhaps it was quite by accident, or maybe you’ve been yearning for years for confirmation of your highest hopes and dreams. A spiritual experience will likely be the most peaceful feeling you’ve ever had, followed by, if you are like me, complete fear and panic.
When I first saw the light, I became extremely afraid. I felt complete distress. I knew, at a deep level, that I was not living in congruence with my heart, and I could feel that this light saw my soul. I was afraid of being seen. I don’t know what the light was, but I believe it’s all I could see of an angel with my earthly eyes. When it spoke to me, I felt total peace and love, yet again, following my experience, I became full of fear. I knew I wasn’t supposed to have an experience like that. I felt I must be crazy.
It took many years and lots of conversations with trusted folks to help me integrate these experiences and learn that I was safe and okay. I eventually learned that I wasn’t crazy. It was just an awakening to another side of life- something that I hope you have experienced or will experience in the way that is perfect for you.
You are not your body or your mind. You are your soul, and your soul’s connection to God. If you happen to encounter something in this world that reminds you of that, it’s okay to be afraid, but you don’t have to be.
Your heart is your center. It is connected to all that is. Your heart will provide you with hunches, guidance, and feelings about what to do, which way to go, and what you need – when you are quiet enough to listen to it. Everyone has this capability, because everyone’s heart comes from God. The trick is to honor it. That’s much more easily said than done!
When I began healing, I did not know that listening to my heart mattered or was important. In fact, I did everything I could not to listen to my heart, because I had been in so much pain. When I began healing, I did so because my heart was calling to me underneath the pain. Listening to my heart allowed me to clear my pain by entering it and releasing it. I had been taught in therapy that many of my instincts were wrong because of my trauma, but I still had a heart that came from God. The trick was and has been to learn which urges came from my heart, and which came from my mind.
Listening to your heart can make you more intuitive and put you in touch with your highest good. When I listen to my heart, especially when making hard choices, the results of my choices are more beautiful and much happier. It’s taken a lot of practice to listen to my heart over my mind, and it’s something I still work on. The best tip I can offer on listening to your heart is that it really helps to get quiet, get still, and meditate – then listen to yourself.
Thank you for reading, and I hope you have a beautiful day.
What does it mean to live a sacred life in our modern society? I think about this a fair amount. How is it possible to connect to the sacred each day, going to work, raising a child, and existing in a capitalistic society with massive inequality? It can feel difficult to create a sacred space in the middle of strip malls. I’ve been cultivating several practices that help me feel connected to God and allow me to live a sacred life even in the middle of this world. Here they are in no particular order:
Living in the moment: living in each moment fully, releasing thoughts about the past and the future, is a very sacred space to exist in and truly helps love and light arise in my heart. If you have read of The Power of Now, this book goes into great depth about this approach to life.
An altar: I have a small altar that I have in my guest room/meditation room. It has a candle and some stones. Sometimes I put pictures or cards on it. It is not complicated, and I don’t know much about making an altar. It is a place I can sit where I meditate and pray. Just lighting the candle helps me immediately connect to a place that is bigger than my own small world.
Writing: writing reminds me to connect to a larger world and to God. It helps me reach a place of peace in my heart, and helps me remember who I am.
Meditation and yoga practices: When I have time, I like to meditate before bed, and try to practice yoga in the morning when I wake up. These practices help clear the clutter of my mind and help me open my heart.
Prayer: Praying is a wonderful thing to do, and I pray many times throughout the day. My favorite prayers are prayers of thankfulness and gratitude, as well as the 23rd Psalm and the Our Father.
Reading sacred texts and spiritual literature: I love to read books that bring me wisdom, truth, and guidance. They are points of light in my world.
Those are some ways that I keep my connection to the spiritual world strong while living in the modern world. I do often wish I could opt out, go live in a cave or the forest, and meditate or pray all day, but I know that my life is here now, with my family, and in this world. Keeping my connection strong with these practices helps me to keep my light alive and my connection to God strong.
What are your sacred practices? I’d love to hear from you!
Before I had my experience, my life was pretty ok. I had done a lot of healing and while things weren’t perfect, I wasn’t really doing anything “wrong” in my life. I was in graduate school. I studied. I had friends. And then I had this beautiful and heart-opening experience of God that really changed my perspective, my heart and my life. It took me a long time to make sense of that experience. I struggled with it. I ignored it. I pretended it hadn’t happened. I got angry at God.
It wasn’t easy to make sense of an experience that is not talked or taught about in my culture. Not only was it not talked about, in my household I had been conditioned to believe that it was a sign of insanity. Experiencing so much beauty in a world that seemed to struggle so much was also extremely tough because it didn’t match up. Making sense of such an experience has taken years.
I found trusted confidants to talk about my experience with, which helped me to feel safer and to learn to accept the truth of what I felt and saw. I also spent a long time reasoning out what made sense about my experience and thinking about what it meant. I reasoned that my experience made me a better and happier person, and that could only be good. Unfortunately, but maybe predictably, I did spend a long time pretending it hadn’t happened, ignoring it because it seemed so out of touch with my regular life. I also got really angry at God for letting me have such an amazing experience and then leaving me on this planet that could seem so far from peace, love, and joy.
It’s taken a long time, but I’ve made some sense of it. I’ve accepted that God is real and that it’s ok to have these kinds of experiences, especially when they make a person happier and more whole. I’ve also realized that our world is and can be beautiful, when seen the right way. We just have to work together and help each other, with love. And I’ve realized that God is right here with us, we need only to get in touch with God in our hearts. I still have a lot of moments of doubt and struggle, but I’m making peace with them.
Have you had an experience of the Divine? I’d love to hear your perspective. Share in the comments!