About what matters

Writing about what really matters

Month: May, 2014

Friends in high places


I clearly remember how my mind was blown when I first picked up Doreen Virtue’s Archangels & Ascended Masters in the bookstore. As I write, it’s here next to me on the sofa, just where it usually is.

I was raised Protestant, so unlike my Catholic friends, the idea of asking a saint or Mother Mary for help was completely foreign to me. At the time I picked up the book, I still thought of, say, asking St Francis’s assistance with a pet as pure superstition to be pitied–one of the relatively few childhood-taught beliefs I still held.

So when I picked up this book containing a mixture of angels, Biblical figures, saints, deities from various cultures, and so on, with information about the specialties of each, a channeled message from many of them, and the author’s statement that she had worked with and had a purely positive experience with each entity, it was absolutely mind-blowing for me. If this were true … I could practically feel the final walls of my childhood mental model of how everything worked falling, like the walls of Jericho. (There’s absolutely nothing wrong with a model … you just have to be ready to let it go when a better model arises.)

Today, all these years later, not a day goes by that I don’t ask an angel or ascended master for help. Sometimes I’m asking for help with something lovely and elevated, but more often, I’m asking for help with something like keeping my cool in a potentially difficult situation, or for cooperation when dealing with some corporation or other. I did this recently before calling my corporate mortgage holder because my annual escrow statement made no sense, and I was simply amazed. The person I spoke with was truly knowledgeable, flexible, and really helped me get exactly what I wanted, as well as teaching me new and helpful things I didn’t know about my online banking.

Angels and ascended masters, according to several sources I’ve read, all operate according to the Law of Non-interference. This means that unless our lives are in danger of being cut short in an unplanned manner, they allow us to go about our business unless asked for help–at which point, I’ve found, they can really make an amazing difference.

These are some of my very favorite angels and ascended masters–the ones I return to again and again.

  • Hardly a work day goes by that I don’t ask for Solomon’s assistance. I find that when I do, I’m wiser, calmer, more measured, and make very few mistakes. My judgment is enhanced.
  • I always invoke Archangel Haniel prior to social situations, or an interview or meeting where I need to make a good impression. I always feel more at ease and have more fun.
  • According to Doreen Virtue, Archangel Raguel oversees all of the other angels, ensuring their harmonious and orderly cooperation. I’ve experienced some truly stunning turnarounds with uncooperative people after invoking this archangel. Try it and see (unless you don’t know any uncooperative people, in which case move along!).
  • I always invoke Archangel Gabriel prior to writing or creating art. If I’m trying to decide among ideas, or looking for inspiration, I ask for her help with that too. I find that when I do, my writing flows effortlessly, and I’m able to complete my projects with an absolute minimum of angst and friction. No doubt some of this is due to an awful lot of practice, but a great deal of the credit goes to this archangel. I can easily prove this to myself by starting a project without asking for her help–but I don’t feel like proving it very often.
  • Archangels Raziel and Uriel help with enhanced psychic insight and communication with guides. If I have a question I want an answer to, I generally invoke one of these archangels before meditating on what the answer might be.

Now maybe this is a new concept for you, and if so, please don’t take my word for it. I’m a big believer in “whatever works” (and not a believer at all in things that don’t). I would suggest that if you’re interested, choose whichever angel or master most appeals to you. Next time you find yourself in a situation where you could use their sort of help, just ask for it. I like to invoke an entity as I meditate for 15 minutes or so … for me, that seems to make the invocation more powerful.

I hope you’ll try it, and I’d love to hear about your experience.

This post is illustrated with my SoulCollage card Angel + Guide. This card is the second one I made, hurriedly and with limited materials at a workshop–but it is not incomplete 🙂


New journeys

New journeys

This past week, as Mars ended its retrograde phase and began moving forward again, I began to see tangible signs of the fulfillment of my intentions, which I welcomed with open arms.

I made this SoulCollage card to represent my readiness to embark on the new journeys and adventures that are on their way to me. This is my reading of the card …

I am the one who is ready to embark on new journeys. I am the one who is guided every step of the way.

I am the one who is your guidepost–all that you know is right. All you need is within.

You are guided, and you are safe. The waters are smooth, for smooth sailing. The path before you is beautiful–enjoy it. That is all.

As Mars goes direct again, my wish for you is that all the positive developments you’ve been hoping for come to fruition!

This post is illustrated with my SoulCollage card New Journeys.

What might have been


… Look for the road that everyone’s on, and don’t follow. –Robert Downie

We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope. –Martin Luther King, Jr.

Dear Nicole,

Earlier this week I read your blog for the first time, with pleasure, and the next morning when I woke, I wanted to respond to your post about what might have been.

Perhaps most of us have had those moments in our lives when we look back, and realize that the choices we’ve made, and those that seem to have been made for us, the things that worked out, and all those that didn’t, have carved out the path of our lives, and left many other possibilities behind in the dust.

I love old houses, and I like to think of lives as being like them. I can’t have every feature I love in one old house. I can’t have an English cottage-style house (which I do have) with a red tile roof (which I don’t). In the same way, we can’t cram everything into a single life … we can’t have every experience every time out of the gate. That’s what I tell myself when I think about the experiences I haven’t had this time around–yet. Some doors are now closed–but of course, so many possibilities remain open.

When I read your story, what came to my mind is this … as a new chapter of your life beautifully opens, its blank page ready for you to write it … what if what you and your soulmate have accomplished thus far is exactly what you came here to do? If you could see the plans you both laid out right now–and I assume you did lay them together–what if you’ve passed every test with flying colors? Done exactly what your souls intended?

Now I don’t know, of course, what your souls intended–there’s a lot I don’t know about what my very own soul intended. But to me, this seems like a real possibility. What seems like futility to our finite eyes may not be at all. Sometimes we choose to build the muscles of the soul in unexpected ways. I do know this–what we do with love is never wasted.

I think it’s so important to look back at key junctures, and mourn what might have been, but isn’t. It seems to me a crucial part of being able to freely move forward into the future, leaving the past right where it belongs.

As you close this chapter, though, it seems to me that it might be fair to write at the bottom of the last page–Unqualified success.

This post is illustrated with the SoulCollage card I made this past New Year’s Eve, My path (2014).

How to go with the Flow


I remember when I first started reading about the Law of Attraction, in books by Esther Hicks/Abraham and others, one of the first things that struck me was the emphasis on ease–the implication being that life shouldn’t be a struggle.

But my life was a struggle. I fought for everything, and always had. I thought that’s how it was done. (Maybe you think so too.) Every day I felt like a salmon swimming upstream. I decided I’d like to try living life a different way.

I started setting positive intentions for experiences I wanted in my life to flow to me, using intention to align myself with the Flow, and the Flow with me. I figured that if I did this, I’d no longer feel I was swimming against the current.

This turned out to be quite true.

If you find yourself struggling today, here are some ideas that may help …

  1. Be sure your purpose is aligned with the Flow. You may notice that striving for things that are, when you come to examine them, actually unimportant, feels like an uphill battle. After all, there’s nothing natural about a lawn without weeds–or even a lawn, full stop. Maybe there’s a reason you feel like giving up when you try to please a difficult person, or lose those last five pounds, or climb a ‘ladder’ someone else invented. Instead, try getting in touch with the Love inside you, and find a purpose–even a very small one to start with–that springs from that place of love. Then turn your attention to this purpose that’s in alignment with the Flow, away from the goals that aren’t.
  2. Plug in to the Flow by getting out in nature. Take a walk. Plant something you find lovely in your garden. Feel the beautiful life Force all around you. Inside you.
  3. Be creative–just like the Universe. Cook something delicious, or make a collage. Look at your handiwork, or taste it. Observe that it is good.
  4. Try a guided meditation that makes you feel 100% better, and puts you in touch with your higher Self.
  5. Listen to uplifting music that raises your vibration. Anael is a favorite of mine.
  6. Keep a gratitude journal to help you become aware of all that is right and beautiful and Flowing in your life.
  7. Ask a favorite saint, angel, or ascended master for assistance. You may just be amazed at the results. (Doreen Virtue’s Archangels and Ascended Masters is a favorite resource of mine. My copy is seriously worn.)
  8. Set some intentions that align you with the Flow, and the Flow with you.

This post is illustrated with the SoulCollage card I made today, One with the Flow.

The lovingkindness meditation


The limits of our goodwill form the ultimate boundaries of our peace of mind, for we cannot achieve peace while aversion is present. –Josh Korda

The lovingkindness meditation is a beautiful–and challenging–practice in which you offer lovingkindness first to yourself, and then to others … those who love you unconditionally, your loved ones, beloved pets, acquaintances, strangers, all sentient beings, relatives, and those who annoy you greatly. (These last two categories can overlap. OK, these last two categories do overlap.) I find it especially easy to offer lovingkindness to those who are now on the other side, as they are now even more purely loving than they were when they were here.

I’ve found in the past that serious resistance can arise to offering lovingkindness to those who seem to be doing their utmost to make my life difficult, or to those who’ve seemed to do so in the past. That’s why I’ve really enjoyed following Beth Terrence’s May is for Metta, which really eases into the lovingkindness practice, and helps build a strong foundation for it–to get in touch with your loving heart energy before you begin.

These are my favorite phrases to use during the meditation …

May I be safe.

May I be happy.

May I be at ease.

May I be peaceful.

May I be healthy and strong.

May I have a calm, clear mind, and a peaceful, loving heart.

May I experience love, joy, and wonder in this life just as it is.

And today may you experience love, joy, and wonder in this life–just as it is.

This post is illustrated with the SoulCollage card I made to represent my 4th chakra companion, a joyful bird, and also to celebrate Hope, that thing with feathers.

The unfolding of consciousness


“What are we doing here?” is a question that gets a lot of play. It’s a good question to ask. I believe there is a reason we’re here, and it’s not blind chance, cruel fate, or punishment for failing to be enlightened yet.

If pressed, I’d say that I’m here to learn, to grow, to become a better person. I’m here for the advanced education of my soul. I’ve read comparisons to working toward a master’s degree–that sounds about right. A PhD, post-doc, fellowships … all of that is a ways off, hopefully still in the future.

But when I read this explanation from Rabbi Rami Shapiro recently, I was struck by it, and found it really beautiful.

Life is intrinsically meaningful and purposeful … We humans are integral to the unfolding of consciousness (at least in our solar system), and … the unfolding of consciousness (nonpersonal, prepersonal, personal, transpersonal, and cosmic) is, from our perspective, what the universe is all about.

If you’ve watched buds unfurl, in your garden or in the wild, then you know that they do so sometimes slowly, sometimes seemingly in the blink of an eye, but with all the inexorable force of nature. Only a killing frost can stop a bud in its tracks. And even then, if the plant or shrub or tree survives, it puts out more buds, absolutely determined to leaf and flower, and they open.

So it is with us, as we open to the light. As we unfurl consciousness in the universe, we are unstoppable.

This post is illustrated by the SoulCollage card I made today to represent this concept, Unfolding of consciousness.

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