Tag Archives: shamanism

Good Reads – my Christmas reading list

This week I’m determined to get back into reading which is something I loved doing as a teen. I would spend many hours each night getting lost in paperback books. I loved the Gordon Kormon books, Judy Blume, RL Stine and even Sweet Valley High series. I spent my weekly allowance which was $5 on a new book every week.

I remember coming home from the library with piles of books and would have them finished before the weekend was over. I just couldn’t get enough of them. I loved getting lost in these fantasy worlds.

So, today – to switch things up a bit I’d like to share my favorite biographies that I’ve read – or plan to read in the next few months. And yes, okay, I cheated a few times and listened to audiobooks. It’s just easier to listen to while you work on something else.

Wishful Drinking – Carrie Fisher

Who didn’t love Carrie Fisher. As a child of the 70’s, I grew up with the original Star Wars movies. We watched these movies every Christmas week. Wishful Drinking is a delightful and entertaining book about Carrie’s life as an actress and her relationship with her mother – Debbie Reynolds who was also a famous movie star.

Confession time, I only got through half the book. I really hope to finish it this week.

Michael J. Fox – No Time Like the Future

Michael J Fox was a household name after the first Back to the Future movie was released. But the thing I loved about Michael was that he was from Edmonton – my home city. I’ve followed Michael’s career since he starred on the hit show Family Ties. We often watched the show together as a family. It saddened me to learn of Michael’s struggle with Parkinsons Disease. When my own dad was diagnosed a few years ago, we turned to Michael’s books for inspiration. I’m looking forward to reading this one. Thanks to my sister who spent almost a whole day trying to get the book for me!

Alex Trebek – The Answer is

Legendary gameshow host, Alex Trebek released a book not long before he died. Alex was one of the world’s most beloved game show hosts. I remember watching Jeopardy with my grandfather after school. He would bet me a dollar for every question. And by the end of the show, I’d owe him about $10. Of course he never asked me to pay up. It’s a good thing otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to buy all those books!

My Want to Read List:

I just love reading about the personal lives of actors or musicians that I admire. Some other books I have on my to read list are:

  • Home Work – Julie Andrews
  • Me – Elton John
  • A Promised Land – Barack Obama
  • Dolly Parton – Songteller
  • Greenlights – Matthew McConaughey
  • The Last Days of John Lennon – James Patterson

Once I figure out how to add the Good Reads widget here, I’ll start sharing my want to read list and progress with you. I think it’s important as a writer, to read books for inspiration. I think my passion for reading as a kid helped me to become a better writer today. I just wish I had the discipline to actually write a full novel.

What’s in your reading list? Let me know in the comments!

Anyone interested in joining a book club? It’s a thought!

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Dreamspeak: Inner intuition, dreams and random thoughts

The reason I’m writing this long winded post is — the past week or so I’ve had some weird experiences. I was watching the Junos, and even though I only recognized a few names of the artists, I predicted nearly all the wins correctly. I’ve predicted how conversations are going to go online. I’ve even predicted correct dates and times of appointments – like a visit with my dad scheduled on the same day I have to be at an appointment I can’t miss.

When I was younger, I used to play this game that I’d call “prediction”. It started off as harmless. Like if the phone rang – I could tell who was calling without looking at the phone. It only worked with a few people that I was connected to – like my mom, or boyfriend, or close friends.

As time went on and I opened myself up to more things, I started experimenting with this – I don’t even know what to call it. Or what it even is – I’m not even sure I believe in psychic abilities.

Even at work, I had the “elevator game” – we had four elevators to choose from. And I would stand in front of the elevator door I thought was going to open next – and most of the time – I was right.

Unless I was stressed out or extremely tired. On these days – that’s when electrical equipment just failed on me. Elevator glitches. Computer glitches. Power failures. Copier jams. You name it – it would break down.

I used to take the bus home from work from downtown when I lived on the southside. It was a good forty minute ride, sometimes an hour. I had plenty of time to kill and get lost in my head. I’d start people watching and try and predict their life stories.

The Prediction Games

“She works in an office, and is going home to her husband and two kids,” I’d say to myself.

“He is single, a life long bachelor, maybe works in the trades,” I said to myself about a man wearing coveralls carrying a lunch pail.

I remember one night, I was heading out to an event and I was thinking about who on the bus was going to the same event. I was much younger and more adventurous – I was dressed up in all black with a collar on. If you can imagine that. It wasn’t an in your face collar, it was a piece of jewelry and I quite liked it.

As I looked around the bus picking people to focus on – a young couple behind me started talking.

“I guess my uncle is going to some event tonight. He’s all dressed in leather and is selling stuff at one of the tables. He goes to these events on a regular basis. I don’t even know what the event is, but I can kind of guess,” he said.

I chuckled quietly to myself and listened for other conversations on the bus. I watched people as they talked. I could guess where people were going simply based on what outfits they had on.

Reading people has always been a gift. I’ve always been a bit of an empath and can pick up easily on energy and feelings.

Reading People

I had a co-worker I was good friends with while working in a music store. When he dropped off his resume, I knew right away I liked him. He was friendly, intelligent, and cute too. And as I walked out of the store, I whispered to a female colleague, “too bad all the cute ones are gay,” and we laughed.

I gave his resume to the boss at the time and said, “I like him. You should hire him for the sales job.”

And sure enough – he was hired almost on the day of the interview. Imagine my shock when I learned he had a girlfriend – who he eventually got engaged to. I didn’t care – she was nice, he was a nice guy and we became fast friends.

Fast forward a couple of years later – he broke things off with his fiance and came out as gay.

Is it possible, my intuition picked up on his “gay vibes” before he knew? Or maybe I could pick up easily on his own insecurities and confusion? I don’t know. But I still chuckle about it today. He was just such a great guy, it didn’t matter. Sadly, we lost touch after I left that job.

I still have this “gift” today – very few people surprise me.

Inner Intuition

I believe that everyone has the gift of intuition but not everyone knows how to listen to what their “gut” is telling them. Some people think that intuition is like having a sixth sense. I’m not sure what intuition really is – but I know for me – there are just things that I know. It’s like I’ve received the knowledge from some unseen guide – I just know in my head that it’s true.

When it comes to reading people, it’s a gift and a curse. I often doubt myself and this leads me to trouble with people or in relationships. If I just listened to that first “vibe” – almost like a stab in the gut feeling – I know I could save myself a lot of heartache.

At work, I knew something was off and I ignored it longer than I should have. People started avoiding me. I was left out of meetings. Friends stopped chatting with me. I could hear whispered conversations when I walked by. I knew that either someone was spreading false information about me around the office – or they were just not happy with me for whatever reason. I think a lot of is – they thought I was making it up – being sick so much and was just trying to get out of work.

I ignored my gut instinct and this led to me being where I am today. Sometimes I’m just too trusting with people I think are my friends and I get burned in the end.

Same goes for my ex-boyfriends. I knew James was a lying scumbag, but yet, I gave him so many years, and more chances than anyone ever got. Ever. I was a sucker when it came to him.

Intuition only works when you trust it and listen to it.

Dreams are a doorway to between the two worlds – the physical world and the spirit world. It is a place for our ancestors to connect with us and send us messages from beyond.

In the world of Shamanism, important messages are often delivered to the Shaman in dream form or while they are in that altered state of consciousness. My mother has been a regular guest star in my dreams lately. And my ex, Trigger. I had a doozy of a dream about him last night.

Mom appeared to me in the dream the other night, “I was only dead for a minute. You have to believe me. I was only dead for a minute, and I moved on,” she said to me.

I’ve been thinking a lot lately about what happens when we die and whether we will see our family or loved ones again. I like to think that we do. My intuition is telling me that this is more than a dream. Somehow, my mother, has found a way to communicate with me.

Messages from beyond

It was my mother who told me I should write again. Back in 2017, I had a dream about her – that’s when I wrote my book “When I get to heaven” – I actually forgot about the dream until I re-read the book last month. (I’m still tweaking the book before I publish it again.)

In the dream, we had a conversation about writing. She had wanted to write a book about her life but didn’t know how and didn’t have the energy to finish it. She left notes everywhere for us to find – we are still finding them tucked into books and in her journals.

“I’ve missed you so much, I have so much to tell you!” she said to me in the dream.

I balked, took a step back. I had been having a lot of dreams about my mother, after she died – but they weren’t really my mother in the dreams. They were something… else. Something darker at the house – pretending to be my mother. I’m still convinced that whatever was reaching out to me in these dreams – is still at the house. I still have those type of dreams occasionally.

But this dream was different. It was lighter. Even the house was lighter. It was full of sunshine and she was in the kitchen doing her favorite thing – baking.

“I have so many plans. And I’ve been thinking of you. I’ve been working. I’ve been watching people. Watching over you and the family – like I wanted to,” she had a huge smile on her face and spoke faster – with excitement.

“I have all these notes, and things – I need to share them with you. I want to write – I need to get to work,” she said to me.

She showed me binders of notes that she had taken. There were BINDERS full of all her notes and memories of her life. There were names on the pieces of paper taped to the binders but I couldn’t read them.

“I’ve missed you so much, but I can’t wait to start working again…” she said.

She looked at me, took my hand and I felt warmth – not cold – warmth – and I felt loved.

“You need to write, my daughter, you need to write,” she said.

It was the last thing she said to me before I woke up from the dream.

And that’s when I started. I started blogging again. Not long after I finished the book, I started this blog. And I haven’t stopped.

Maybe it was just a dream. But it felt real. There are some things I just know – and I feel it in my heart like I had a real conversation with my mother that night. She had found her way to me and still does in her dreams.

Dreams are a magical doorway between the spirit world and the physical world – according to Shamanistic practices. There are legends and myths in every culture around the world and this is an ancient practice that has been around for nearly 100,000 years.

Am I a psychic? Is this intuition? Or does my mother really find her way to me while deep in slumberland? I don’t know. I don’t have the answers. But my gut, tells me to just – believe.

Shamanism: when the universe speaks to you – listen

As a kid, I remember the house being so hot and humid because my mother liked a warm house – even in summer months. With hormones developing at an early age, I found the heat unbearable. I still do at my age now.

I would sneak outside after everyone had gone to bed and would lie under the stars with a blanket or a good book. I think that’s what started my obsession with star gazing and space exploration.

Hours would go by and I would just stare up at the sky. It’s one of the things I miss now about living in downtown.

I remember staying up most of the night enjoying the cool summer air. Some nights were just too hot to handle. I’d put on some jeans and a hoodie and I would wander down the street to the local park. I’d sit on the swings and just stare up – at least until I saw something weird like a shooting star or something I couldn’t explain.

I became obsessed with star gazing and sky watching from an early age and it’s something I miss deeply now.

Tonight reminded me of those nights. It’s been such a hot and humid couple of days that I’m sweltering. But then something happened tonight that I can’t explain. Maybe it’s the heat getting to me or maybe it’s isolation. Or a combination of both. Or maybe someone slipped some good drugs into my drink when I wasn’t looking.

I was watching one of my all time favorite movies, Lord of the Rings – The Two Towers – it’s epic – when a giant moth flew into my living room and nearly landed on my face. I of course, screamed, jumped up and ran into the kitchen looking for something to arm myself with. I found a roll of paper towel.

I ran around my condo trying to find this giant moth wondering how the hell it got into my condo. I only had one window open. I finally struck it when it landed near my lamp, nearly knocking over everything on top of my desk with it – including my picture of me playing the piano a few years ago. I stood there for a moment dumbstruck – wondering if this was some kind of sign.

And then, a flash of lightning outside caught my attention. I turned off the computer, all the lights and sat near my kitchen window in the dark. All the feelings as a kid suddenly returned. It was like I was twelve years old again staying up way past my bedtime – watching the night sky, waiting for some kind of sign from above.

The symbolism of weather

Weather is a huge part of Native American Shamanism representing the four elements – air, earth, water and fire. And with tonight’s storm, I think we saw all four elements.

Storms give off this magical energy – it’s so powerful that you can sense when a storm is coming.

Watching an intense storm, you can also sense this intense magnetic energy- as the high winds and the thunder clouds roll in – you can’t help but feel a sense of awe. The energy is almost contagious. You can feel the anger of the earth rising.

The power of the earth. Mother Nature. Mother Earth.

Mother Earth is the goddess of all creations in the practice of Shamanism – one of the oldest forms of healing known to mankind.

“The thunder sounds like the planet itself is being torn apart, the noise makes humans fumble” – author unknown

Have you ever noticed the smell of ozone in the morning after a rain storm? Storms are a way of cleansing the earth from pollution, toxins and harmful energy we may not see or feel.

The smell is the fresh aroma of oxygen that comes with the rainfall. You can smell it before the storm hits – on a hot and humid day. It’s a powerful smell and one it’s one of the most beautiful smells to me.

Not everyone can pick up on the smell of ozone. Just like not everyone can sense a storm is coming. Those who can, feel a strong connection to nature.

To the earth.

It’s as if the earth is talking to you. And if you sit very still and listen, you can almost hear her crying out to you.

The sound of the rain hitting the pavement. The sound of the wind crushing trees against each other. The booming sound of thunder. Even lightning can make a noise – especially if it strikes which it does often in nature.

Storms are magical. Beautiful. Powerful.

Have you ever notice how quiet the world seems when a storm hits? I once got trapped by rain while hiking in Hinton at the base of a mountain. I pulled out my tarp from my backpack and sat under the protection of a large tree. I just sat there, closed my eyes and listened to everything happening around me.

I didn’t feel scared or worried. I’ve never felt more serene, or calm. I felt at peace. Connected. It was an amazing experience.

Everything around me – suddenly grew quiet as the storm rolled in.

Have you ever noticed that the animals get real quiet during storms? The birds stop singing. Even the magpies take cover. The world falls silent – as if they are all listening to Mother Earth.

As the storm grew more intense tonight, I couldn’t help but feel this nagging feeling like something was wrong. Something had happened. Or something was going to happen. I zoned out while watching the lightning. For a good five minutes – I just lost time.

The storm finally subsided and I turned my computer back on. I decided to look up the meaning of the moth and what it means when a moth appears in your life during troubled times.

What does it mean to see a moth in your dreams, or appear to you in your life during troubled times?

You have a strong sense of faith, but are not blind to your faith. Even if other people don’t approve of what you do or who you are – be true to yourself. Be your authentic self.

“Let the world know your real self – your genuine self because this is how you will know the people who will be there for you until the end.”

Okay universe, you win.

And so, I took in all of this – everything that happened tonight as a sign. The universe is speaking to me. I should listen to it. I think the message is that I should just be myself. Write about the things that I want to write about and not care what others think.

I should be true to myself, true to this blog. Accept the things I can’t change about life – and just be the best version of me that I can.

As I type this, that electric and charged energy I felt during the storm has faded. I feel once more at peace. The negative feelings, the anxiety – has been washed away with the now gentle rain I can hear outside my window.

I’ll be writing more articles like this on totem animals, spirit animals, and other things I’ve learned and experienced over the years during my studies. It was my original intent with this blog, and I’m going to continue with it – in addition to fitness posts as I continue my challenge.

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