PBP2012: “O” is for Owning all parts of the self

Integration seems to be a key spiritual them that is coming up across the board for many people this year.  Going into the shadow parts of our path and seeing what might be buried deep in the dark soil of our experience.  When we dig a little deeper we see the seeds that are starting to blossom.

Integration is more that just coming into alignment with our path, but I feel we need to fully own those parts of self so that we can truly become whole within our working.  I feel that we have to become the magick, we have to be the divine spirit, we have to claim that divinity that is the driving force behind all the wonders we see in this life.  Holding ourselves apart from the journey gives us an out.  I feel too often we look to escape from our great work. It is time that we move into states of greater connection with the parts we might be ignoring.

So, how do we begin this process?

What are your taboo topics?  What are the issues of your experience that you’d rather keep buried in the soil?  Where in your life do you feel fragmented?

As we move through life, we often leave little pieces of our soul buried in those moments.  These tend to be the tough spots that draw us into the past through deep emotion.  This can be hard.  There are moments of our life that we might not want to re-acknowledge.

Bringing all of our parts into alignment (event the vicious ones) allows us to own our shadow.  It allows us to breath new life into those moments and to acknowledge the lessons we’ve learned about ourselves along the way.

Take a moment to ask, “What parts of my life am I ignoring?”  “Where might I have left pieces of myself along the way?”

Owning all of our parts puts us back together.  It allows us to be whole.  It allows us to be the divine soul that we were always meant to be.

 

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PBP2012: M is for Micro Meditations

I love meditation.  There is something beautiful about the sacredness of coming into that deep place of being.  When we are finally able to become still enough to align breath, intention and will.  Where we meditate can play into when we can meditate.  For many of us that are engaged in a spiritual journey we may have altar or sacred spaces we have designated as our meditation area.

If you are like me, you are most likely feeling this hectic energy that is pushing us in a multitude of directions.  Many of us are being called to service, and many others are finding their lives in the midst of chaotic energy.  I look towards my meditation corner longingly, but I at times neglect making time to  devote to sitting in front of my altar… What’s a busy mystic to do?

We have to find time to meditate in the moment.  I find that sacred space is constantly around me if I allow myself to tune into it.  Creating space in the moment is also important in allowing spirit/intuition/and inner guidance to step in.

These micro meditations can last a single breath or they can last several moments.  There is no right or wrong way to meditate, but we have to be able to let go of some greater prescription of what meditation has to be.  If you are not able to meditate for one breath, then how do you expect to be able to make that hour-long meditation work later in the day.  Meditation usually ends up on the cutting room floor at the end of a hectic day.

However, if you are adding micro meditations in throughout the day, you are allowing full integration of your practice and life experience.  We have to carve out those moments, otherwise many of us take on a bit of regret for not finding the time to meditate.

Take a look at your day.  When would you be able to squeeze in meditation?  Be creative.  I like using the crosswalks on the way home from work.  When the light is red and I am waiting, I tune fully into my breath.  I allow my mind to become still, and I focus on how red the “do not walk” sign is.  Once it changes I continue my journey home.

Share your micro meditations experiences  or ideas below!

Michael A Brazell CFT CSN MAT PAT

www.michaelbrazell.com

www.blogtalkradio.com/michaelbrazell

www.paradigmshiftdc.com

PBP2012: K is for Keepsakes

I am very tangible with my spirituality.  I love to anchor my growth in to tokens that I can place on my altar or hold to remind me of those moments.  I love tokens, totems, and reminders of faith.  With all the distractions that surround us, being able to hold a piece of your spiritual journey is powerful.  I’ve never much been a crafty person, but it has been an area that has called me as my journey has evolved.  I like to pick up stones from my walks, and if I have a spiritual moment on that walk, I’ll place that stone on my altar.

I feel we are living in a disconnected time, and even as spiritual workers we might find ourselves caught up in the busy nature of life.  There is much work that has to be done, and we need to remind ourselves to take a moment to appreciate the journey a bit.

There are also times when I give my students little medallions or stones during a class.  I feel that after a class the completion paperwork is nice, but having something a bit more tangible can help to remind us of the moment we took that next step.  I have a mala that I wear constantly.  I’ve worn it ever since I’ve stepped onto the path. It carries my energy, and has been through every up and down.  It is my constant connection to that first day.

If we look back to our youth, many of us had the teddy bear that was also our best friend… that toy that connected us to a place of safety.    What are your reminders?   Do you have tangible objects that take you back to moments of initiation,  graduation, or just a moment where life made sense?

If this is not something that you’ve tried, I’d recommend it.  I find beauty in being able to physically touch those moments of spiritual connection. To hold my faith deeply in my hands.

Michael A. Brazell CFT CSN MAT PAT

Psychic Medium/ Modern Mystic

www.michaelbrazell.com

www.soulinteraction.com

www.deviantyogi.com

www.blogtalkradio.com/michaelbrazell

PBP2012: K is for Kissing the Limitless

I first saw this book on the shelf at my book store over a year ago. The title intrigued me so I bought it. It has sat on my bookshelf for over a year, and little did I know the impact this book would have on my life. This year did not start out on the smoothest of notes. It seems that has been the case for a lot of people. This is a year where we begin to come into greater alignment with our “soul self”, or divine nature. We only need to look outside to see that things are deteriorating in rapid speed, but things are also coming together. In March I had the opportunity to take T. Thorn Coyle’s “Self Possession” workshop. I really had no idea to expect. I just knew that I was at a crossroads in my professional, personal and well, just overall well-being. I felt that I really had no clue what it was that I wanted to do with this experience, and part of me just wanted to go sit on a mountain somewhere and meditate and live on berries. This would not be the case.

The workshop was based on the book “Kissing the Limitless”, and it is really hard to put into words what happened during that weekend workshop, but the effects of the soul ripples are still being felt. One of the big things about self-possession is coming into your own, and then owning it. As a professional psychic, and one that helps others through difficult times in their lives, I came to a realization that I was not tuning into my own needs. I was not sure how I would react to Thorn’s teaching, but she is a teacher that is truly living her talk. One of the things that we discussed in the workshop was the establishment of a beloved community. The coming together of like-minded people for the cultivation of peace, soul energy, and alignment. Once the workshop was over and we all blew back into our lives, I felt that I wanted to be more like a dandelion seed, carrying this energy back into my own community.

I sat with this for a while, and realized the answer for community was sitting on my bookshelf, and my partner David and I decided it was time to start a study group. I looked around our first meeting and we were an eclectic bunch. David and I both lead two very different meetup groups and decided to merge our energies to see what would happen. His group is more focused on magical traditions and mine is geared towards soul/psychic development. What I found even more interesting is that many in the group had bought the book before we even decided to start the group.

One of the big parts of the book is the establishment of a daily practice. It has exercises that are challenging and in the introduction you are told it could take a couple of years to fully work through the book. The time limit is variable depending on where you are in your practice, but for many of us it was the first time that we were able to go below the surface. More importantly we were in realization that we were not alone in our struggles. We created safe space for everyone to share where they currently were in their process, but where we wanted to go.

The title of the book really sums up what I am hoping this year to be. Each day we are presented with limitless opportunities to grow and to connect. Every breath is a chance to connect to that divine part of ourselves, and for some the road will be easy… for others the road will be challenging. Sometimes the destination is the road, and showing up is so very important his year. I never thought that a book I did not give much thought to would be the thing that would drive me into a completely new direction and focus in my life and work. The beauty of our spiritual path is that it allows us to experiment and step outside of the box. Eclectic spirituality is a blessing in that our teachers show up in many forms, and usually when our guard is down.

Michael A. Brazell CFT CSN MAT PAT

www.michaelbrazell.com

www.deviantyogi.com

michael@michaelbrazell.com

PBB2012: J is for Journey

This has been a year of remembrance. Sometimes I find myself getting caught up in the ins and outs of life, the ups and downs, the lights and the darks, and the varying shades of gray. Sometimes we forget that the road itself is the destination, the journey is the process by which we connect into divine space. I’ve been fortunate to start working through T. Thorn Coyle’s “Kissing the Limitless”, and one of the things I love about this book is that it takes you backwards through the dark soil of your life. It allows you to find the soul seeds that you might have planted (or that might have been planted for you). Sometimes we sit in the upheaval and only see those things as damaging, when in reality those things may have been the spark we needed to grow into the spiritual people that we are. The journey we are on is just as important as the destination. We at time forget to look at the road. It’s many twists and turns, we only notice the times we trip on pebbles, but we get up. Sometimes we scrape our knees, and we learn to heal. Many of us do journey work as part of our practice. I am not saying that we should not have a destination, but we shouldn’t let the destination be the only thing we keep our eyes on. I have found that my journey needs to be fluid. I need to have space and the most difficult box for me to get out of is the one I place myself in. We often times fragment ourselves in this growing process. As those walking the spiritual path, it is important for us to re-assemble ourselves. Those thoughts from the past that grab you the strongest are sometimes the places where you have left a small piece of yourself. Go back and see what your lessons may have been in that phase of your journey. Listen to the road, otherwise you might find yourself in one of those crazy cul-de-sac spirals.

When we move into new places, we have to have appreciation for where we have been. The road ahead is built from the bricks of our past experiences. Those synchronicities that in the moment many have seemed “coincidence” that shifted us into who we are. My theory is that if we are still breathing when all is said and done that the divine must have some greater purpose for us. That the turmoil was just a stepping stone to something greater.

What have been your gifts from the struggle of your journey? Would you change your past, or do you find compassion for your road? Where are you headed traveler? What do you do to slow down and see the road beneath your feet?

Michael A. Brazell CFT CSN MAT PAT

www.michaelbrazell.com

www.deviantyogi.com

michael@michaelbrazell.com

PBP2012: J is for Journaling

One of the big things I have found myself doing this year is going a bit deeper within.  This has been a year of engaging the shadow, opening up to our light, and one way to deepen this process is to journal.

Many of us keep journals, but I found that at times I hold back.  I haven’t gone deep enough at times.  The journal is also a way for us to capture our journey, our story, and our path.  I am also be big supporter of pen and paper journals.  There is power in the action of writing.  I can then choose to transfer what I’ve written later to the computer.   There is something powerful in not being able to hit the delete button.  Tangibility is also a powerful thing this year.  Being able to hold our words.  To open the book, and to equally “close the book” on parts of our lives that might be difficult or cause unease.

Journals are snapshots of our lives, our paths, our insights, and we get to see where we’ve been so that we can get clarity on where we “should” go.  I am really big on carrying a small pocket journal.  Being that my spiritual ADD is always keeping me divinely distracted, spirit has to grab me in the most random of times.  Having my journal in my back pocket allows direct access to the flow.  Yes, my cell phone as a task and note taking app, but it takes me more time to go into the app, open it, save it, and at times it gets lost if my phone glitches.  My pen and paper journal tends to not glitch, unless the ink spills, and even that becomes part of the journal entry.

Do you journal?  Do you just write or do you draw?  Do you have a separate journal for the different aspects of your life (magical, spiritual, personal, business)?  What does your journal look like?

I personally keep one for my ideas and insights, one of readings and channeling, and my tastes in journal span the spectrum. I also find my writing in a journal to be a tangible form of spirituality, its my words, and I can touch them.

I’m going to be doing a mini journaling challenge on my other blog:  www.deviantyogi.com next week.  Each day I’ll post a journaling prompt to help ground us into a practice of taking journaling a little deeper.  So, head over, subscribe, and be part of the journey.

PBP2012: I is for Imagination!

Stagnation is an ugly monster that sits on the edge of our spiritual practice.  It lies in wait.  It’s soldiers of choice are boredom and routine.  In steps our hero, Imagination!

Creativity is a great thing in our spiritual practice, it allows us to have fun and to not take it all so seriously.  In a fast paced digital world we tend to lose that creative spark.  I am aware that it shifts, but for me, there is a tangibility in imagination.  Remembering back to when a sheet and a table became a mountain, or action figures springing to life, rushing into battle.  Imagination is a key element in spirituality.  On some levels we are using our minds eye to access realms that are just beyond our vision.  There is a beauty in being able to close our eyes and see the Star Goddess or Shiva as we see them.  Imagination is also key element in accessing and deepening clairvoyance.  Understanding symbols, going beyond prescribed messages and taking it deeper.  At times it is a powerful thing to look at the work through the eyes of a child.  This morning I had the chance to see this play out, as often times the divine brings me.  There was a mom and her little girl sitting on the metro this morning.  The mom was deeply engaged in her blackberry, but the child was in a far distant place.  In the child’s hands where these small pieces of paper, and she was deeply involved in a discussion with the paper–and then the pieces of paper were also talking to one another.  I was just out of earshot, but there was a beauty in that moment. When paper becomes more than paper, when distant realms become accessible because we realize they are not that far away.  Bringing that child like quality into our spiritual practice allows us to see it in its simplicity.  Why does it all have to be so complicated?   Things can just be a little outside of the lines and we can be okay with that.

Here are a few exercises:

  • Go to the store and buy a toy, then go home and play with it.
  • Buy a coloring book
  • Swing on a swing
  • sing nursery rhymes
  • Pull out some Dr. Seuss, or your favorite Books from yesteryear.  I loved the Ramona series, Where the Sidewalk ends.

There is a simplicity with these actions.  What if we approached our divine connection this way?  With open arms, and eyes wide open.  If anything, this will shake up your routine a bit.  Break free from your attachments to a process and just be present.

Love and Light

Michael A. Brazell CFT CSN MAT PAT

www.deviantyogi.com

www.michaelbrazell.com

PBP2012: “I” is for Intuition

A lot of people ask me if being psychic is something that you are born with, or if is something you can learn.  We all come into this place with a deep knowing of where we are supposed to be on our path.  It is like we are born with an internal GPS system that allows us to steer into and away from different lessons and situations.  The response I like to give is:  “We are all born intuitive.  Some people come in with AOL dial-up, and others come in with SAT LINK, but we can all choose to upgrade when we are ready.”  As magick workers and those on a spiritual path we have to work on the deep listening aspect of our chosen crafts and path.  Magick and intuition do not just flow through us when we are in ritual or in front of our altars.  Our lives are an action of living in spirituality and our intuition is always there guiding us.

Being intuitive means that you receive that guidance from the “soul space”.  There is always something talking to us from within.  That little voice that only has our best intent and compassion for us.  It is the driver in the car with the better map.  I personally know when I take the wheel and refuse the directions that life becomes more bumper car than Sunday drive in the country side.  Our intuition is how the divine relays that deep guidance and information to us.  In degrees of separation it is: self-soul-divine.  This allows us instant access to everything that is outside of us, but it comes through us.  There are many theories on how the intuition works, where that information flow originates from, and depending on your tradition you relationship to your intuition might vary a bit.  How we connect is not as important as connecting.  Establishing a daily connection with your intuition is important for not only deepening your practice but for establishing trust for self and our divine connection.

What is your relationship to your intuition?  What is your process of deep listening?   How does intuition play into your daily practice or your ritual work?

Michael A. Brazell CFT CSN MAT PAT

michael@michaelbrazell.com

www.michaelbrazell.com

www.deviantyogi.com

PBP2012: “H”- Happiness In Your Practice

Ever since attending the T. Thorn Coyle self-possession workshop, I’ve been in a state of deep awareness with my deep practice.  One of the things I’ve been paying even closer attention to is my daily practice.  I began to pick apart where I am in my practice, what is working, what isn’t working, where I can best make use of time, etc.  I felt like I was missing something, and then a small voice from deep within chimed in “Are you HAPPY, in your practice”.  My rational mind said, “Of course I am happy with my practice.  It is well structured, I know what time to get up, how long my fasting cycle lasts, what yoga sequences I’ll be focusing on this week, my writing projects planned..,”  The soul voice responded, “But are you happy IN your practice.”  I had to sit with this for a moment.  I find that at times I am going through the motions of my practice.  I do the things I do because I know that they deepen my spiritual connection.  I know that I need to tune in to my soul, to open up, to listen, to evolve, but I also need to be happy while doing all this wonderful expansion.

I look around and see the same thing in a lot of my pagan and spiritual friends.  Out spiritual lives become just as heavy as our work lives, and for some of us our spirituality is our work lives.  “When you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life” is a quote I’ve tried to live by, but at times we forget and let the joy slip out of our work, and even worse our practice.  Happiness is spirituality at its best.  When we laugh or smile from the soul out we step fully into the moment.  Laughter is said to be the best medicine, and it is a medicine that we need a lot more of.  Sometimes I make a mistake when I’m leading a yoga class, and we all laugh.  In that moment all tension is broken, and we all come fully into connection in our practice.  Happiness is letting go and being present in our moment.  We have to have fun and let go IN our practice.  We have to be present in joyful connection to our meditation.  Smudge with joy, let go and sing your chants, dance if you do not dance, sing, and just let go a bit.

I am closing with this picture of a Laughing Jesus.  I am not Christian, but the Christian path at times is a very heavy path.  I grew up catholic and loved the ritual, but there was a somberness to it that I never really understood. I’m sure that even Jesus laughed, even if we don’t hear much about those parts of his life.

Where are you in your practice?  Is it something that you are just running through the motions?  Are you joyful in your spirituality, or are you somber?

Michael Brazell CFT CSN MAT PAT

www.deviantyogi.com

www.michaelbrazell.com

Michael@michaelbrazell.com

PBP2012: G is for Grace

One word that you will hear a lot in religious and spiritual circles is “grace”.   If you look up the word grace you’ll find a multitude of definitions ranging from how we move to blessings bestowed from the divine.  I feel that grace transcends definition.  It is more like a state of being rather than something that can be lock into words.  In our practice we connect not just to ourselves but to the world around us.  When we extend compassion to those that hurt us we are moving into a state of grace.  When we love the shadows in our past, we are loving ourselves gracefully. One of my teachers always taught me about the importance of leaving situations gracefully.  When we do we do not take with us any of the anger or resentment.  You could almost say that grace is a form of compassion.  It goes to the core of our being, and becomes a deep extension of our soul’s light and energy.  We can see aspects of grace in a ballerina’s movement, can we extend the same into how we connect with those around us and even to ourselves?  To move with mercy.  To look at one another and to see the soul reflected back.  Practicing being in a state of grace is important for bringing the soul into alignment.  The soul is perfect divine light.  When we look at one another typically we only see the shell, the third dimensional self.  If we were to look at the world through the soul’s eyes?  To see only the shining light of God Herself that rests in everything.  When we engage in our spiritual practice and path work it is important for us to see where we might be holding on to limiting emotions.  Where are we holding our anger, resentment, guilt?  Breathing into those areas of our life that need love, embracing the depths of our darkness, and loving ourselves fully.  In yoga we talk about Ahimsa.  The action of living a non-violent life.  In Wicca the rede “and harm ye none” is one of the core statements.  The thing we forget to do is turn this internal.  Many of us are in a constant state of judging ourselves.  We have to take our practice “within” so that we won’t be “without”.  This can be difficult to do, but it is an important part of the journey.  We can’t just strive to see God Herself in the world around us, but we must also see her in our reflection in the mirror.  When we show mercy to ourselves, we are in turn showing mercy to the divine within us.  Grace then becomes the extension of mercy out into this sometimes chaotic world.  We each get to choose how we embrace grace and mercy.  How do you extend these concepts into your practice?  Into your life? and into the relationships that you carry?

Michael Brazell CFT CSN MAT PAT

www.deviantyogi.com

www.michaelbrazell.com

michael@michaelbrazell.com