12 Aug 2017 New blog notification – I Pay Attention

Hello – just popping in to let you know I decided to start a new blog, only has 3 GB picture size, so the emphasis will be on words.  Here is link to first post.  We’ll see what happens lol.

https://ipayattentionblog.wordpress.com/2017/08/12/first-blog-post/

 

Latest post:  https://ipayattentionblog.wordpress.com/2017/08/17/17-aug-2017-new-chapter-for-my-ffxiv-character-aurora/ – I changed my FFXIV character Aurora from a human female to a male Elezen (Elf). 

 

11 Aug 2017 Out of picture space on my account – considering options! (that don’t involve paying more money!)

Good morning to you.  It’s 9:11 am on this Friday morning.  I am faced with a dilemma yet again. I’ve run out of picture space for my account here on WordPress and am not sure what I should do about it!  One option is to go through older blogs and delete them and the images that go with them, another just delete the pictures and keep and edit the blogs, yet another idea is to start a new blog and just leave this one open and lastly pay for the premium service each month so I can double the amount of pictures I can store.  Since I am an artist and like to illustrate my messages here with pictures, I am put in a tough spot lol!  I know I could give links to other photo sites and stuff like that but most people trying to read something find that annoying….I do anyways.  I don’t like having to go to a bunch of different places when I am going to a specific place hoping to get everything there.

I am reluctant to delete older posts straight out because there are a lot of people out there like me who do research for things and older posts are useful!  I am unaware of a tool on this site, without having to probably pay extra, that could help me know which posts are the most popular or most often viewed so if I do decide to cull a bunch of stuff, I don’t remove something people actually need to find.  Plus, going through 500+ posts is labor intensive and it’s like moving and packing your own stuff versus hiring a disinterested outside party to do it lol!  Or the struggle I went through trying to type up my journals on the computer.  When you go through your own stuff you get all wrapped up in the memories and it takes way too long to do it!  Someone who doesn’t have any connection to the stuff, whatever it may be, can get through a lot more far more quickly.  UGH!!

I’m leaning towards starting an entirely new blog but we’ll see.  Any suggestions?!

Part of the reason I love Grounding – basically spending time with the earth without shoes – is because of the feeling of connection I get with all the trees and life around me.

 

10 Aug 2017 Evacuation Dream (A.I)

Good morning to you.  It’s 7:46 am here as I write to you wherever and whenever you are as you visit me here.    I hope this finds you well today.  My prayers/positive vibes go out to you for whatever your current situation and conditions.  I hope you will choose love over hate as you go through your day.  I want to give a shout out to friend Paul David Ridley who recently had surgery to restore mobility to his body (especially his hands) and is in the process of a great recovery – Yay!

Paul David Ridley

The dream I want to share was one of those thought provoking dreams.  If it was the end of the world and we had to evacuate and we had sentient A.I beings and they asked to go along, would we make room for them?

So the dream was about what seemed to be an evacuation from a world and all the “places” had been set.  There was a woman who watched her lover who apparently had been betrayed incinerated with other prisoners in an enclosed room.  I’m not sure if the man was human, because afterwards there seemed to be like mannequin heads in their places.  She was desperately trying to collect his ashes/DNA to take to the new world.  She had laid down a long strip of orange sticky stuff.  There were odd A.I lifeforms that started to show up last minute for a place.  I was carrying an artificial seal that was very heavy before I woke up.  I remember seeing what appeared to be pilots.  One had on a long powder blue coat with a black collar and he was wearing a flying cross.  He was tall with black hair.

Man in the dream looked a lot like King Ludwig only the coat was the lightest blue color in this painting and he didn’t have facial hair.

Source Internet – painting of King Ludwig II on one of his night time sleigh rides

9 Aug 2017 Water Dragon (chalk drawing) and FFXIV’s awesome location Costa del Sol (video games make being in crowds possible for me)

Just sharing some drawings and more of my FFXIV avatar Aurora’s adventures.   I’m really happy with the chalk water dragon!  Kyle says I’m getting better.  This time I used one of our McFarlane plastic dragons as a reference!  It helps to have a reference versus just going by visualization.

Wanted to give a shout out to Square Enix (FFXIV) about the awesome water location they added called Costa del Sol in La Noscea.  The holiday event, Moon Faire, is going on there right now and I had so much fun last night! If this sort of thing was going on in “real life”, I wouldn’t even participate.  I would be body conscious, distracted by the noise, the colors, lights, sounds, the garbage people would inevitably leave in the pristine waters but in the digital realm – just fun!  No worries – just playing!  Thank you Square!

(I ran out of picture room again….sigh…so I apologize if images disappear for older posts.)

9 Aug 2017 Dream about Vitimite and working through addictions in dreams

Good morning to you.  It’s 8:41 am as I write and I hope this finds you well wherever and whenever you are.  Kyle and I have been having a lot of trouble sleeping as of late but he left the room around 3:30 or so and I ended up having one of those detailed dreams I have.  There were several but this one was the most specific.

The dream was about something to do with a Native American woman who had a major disclosure to make to help some high profile case, not sure what, but she had a 1 million ton piece of “Vitimite.”  I saw the small piece she had that she could show us as a bunch of agencies had shown up to collect the large piece – very secretive.  The Vitimite was a crystal formation, dark red.  I was examining it and can remember commenting that it looked like it could have fallen from the sky as it was porous in nature but also could be from earth with all the stalactite forms on it.  The woman was making enough to go anywhere she wanted.  She could go to Europe but was talking about going to Santa Fé NM.  She owned a jewelry store and let us pick something out.  I couldn’t find anything in the parameters she let us choose from.  I was still trying to find something when I woke up.  all the pieces I wanted weren’t the ones we got to choose from.  The last one I was looking at was an adjustable ring with a green crystal shaped in the head of a cat!

The waking world keys that unlocked this dream, I suspect, had to do with me recently finding an interesting geology page and I think my subconscious is doing for me with ring shopping (used to be a problem) like it did after I quit smoking.    After I quiet smoking I would have dreams about smoking and wake up feeling guilty lol!  So I’m having unsatisfying jewelry shopping dreams after giving up shopping for jewelry in the real world.  It’s almost like an aversion therapy, but in my dreams versus reality.

So I did some looking to see if Vitimite was a real mineral or gemstone and turns out it is but it’s not how it was in the dream.  Vitimite is clear and white and the one specimen I could find anything about came from the Eastern Siberian region of Russia.  Minerals like Scoria rock, Vanadite and Agatized Dinosaur Bone are more like what the woman was holding in the dream looked like to me.  I did a lot of searching to see if I could find a mineral/stone that looked like what was in the dream and couldn’t find the exact thing but what I’m sharing here, imagine these all combined into one piece – porous bottom and think wall of spiny dark red crystals on top.

8 Aug 2017 Finding a way to kinship with all and Pentagon commissioned report on PTSD in US military

Good morning to you.  It’s 9:16 am as I begin to write to you on this cooler, pleasant day.  I perused the news headlines and this made me think of the snippet of the dream I remember before waking up.  It was the oddest thing to dream about too!  I was standing with Brian Williams of MSNBC and he had a bunch of awards around his neck.  He seemed so happy to see me and like he knew me.  As we were talking, I saw actor Chris Pratt and some other man walking through a door and they seemed to be avoiding me lol.  I don’t know why they popped into my dreams but I hope they are doing well!

 

My thoughts about what I’ve been seeing in the headlines brought me to one of my favorite web pages.  With the second spin of their prayer wheel, this message came up.  I feel this message in my heart…..the age old questions we just need to ask ourselves to bring people and nations together instead of pushing ourselves further apart.  How are we the same?  What are all the things we have in common?  What good things do we share and how do we make the world full of more of those good things?  My dream for this world is that all of us might find a way to focus on how we are the same and less on how we are different.  Build more bridges so that we can meet one another.  Break down (and never waste the money to build) the tangible and intangible walls that keep us apart.

http://www.worldprayers.org/prayerwheel/index.html

In striving to recognize the primacy of Fire and Light,
I feel kinship with my Zoroastrian brothers and sisters.
In striving to obey the Ten Commandments,
I feel kinship with my Jewish brothers and sisters.
In striving to be kind to neighbor and the needy,
I feel kinship with my Christian brothers and sisters.
In striving to be compassionate to creatures great and small,
I feel kinship with my Buddhist-Jaina brothers and sisters.
In striving to surrender myself completely to God Almighty,
I feel kinship with my Muslim brothers and sisters.
In the recognition that wisdom flows from enlightened masters,
I feel kinship with my Sikh brothers and sisters.
In remembering that serving people should be the goal of religion,
I feel kinship with my Baha’i brothers and sisters.
In my respect and reverence for Nature that sustains us,
I feel kinship with my Native American brothers and sisters.
In feeling that these and more are all paths to the same Divinity,
I feel kinship with my Hindu brothers and sisters.
In my love and laughter, joy and pain,
I feel kinship with all my fellow humans.
In my need for nourishment and instinct to live on,
I feel kinship with all beings on the planet.
In my spiritual ecstasy with this wondrous world,
I feel kinship with the Cosmic Whole.

universal reflection – v. v. raman – cape of good hope – 1999
The report about the Pentagon commissioned study regarding PTSD in the United States military of course caught my eye yesterday.  The aversion to the taking and or loss of another living being’s life  is something most of us have in common.  Suicide is personal for me and as a medically retired veteran who falls into the category of the study, it’s even more personal!  It’s important to note the study found that the use of firearms is the most common way veterans are committing suicide.   It’s also interesting to note how old this study is 2014!  Why isn’t it a 2017 report?!  Doesn’t seem like they are really staying current on this issue to me. 

Troops at risk for suicide not getting needed care, report finds

Tom Vanden Brook, USA TODAY , TEGNA 4:23 PM. EDT August 07, 2017

WASHINGTON – Pentagon health care providers failed to perform critical follow-up for many troops diagnosed with depression and post-traumatic stress syndrome who also were at high risk for suicide, according to a new study released Monday by the RAND Corp.

Just 30% of troops with depression and 54% with PTSD received appropriate care after they were deemed at risk of harming themselves. The report, commissioned by the Pentagon, looked at the cases of 39,000 troops who had been diagnosed in 2013 with depression, PTSD or both conditions. USA TODAY received an advance copy of the report.

“We want to ensure that they get connected with behavioral health care,” said Kimberly Hepner, the report’s lead author and a senior behavioral scientist at RAND, a non-partisan, non-profit research organization. “The most immediate action — removal of firearms — can help to reduce risk of suicide attempts.”

The report, titled Quality of Care for PTSD and Depression in the Military Health System, also found that one third of troops with PTSD were prescribed with a medication harmful to their condition.

From 2001 to 2014, about 2.6 million troops have deployed to combat zones in Afghanistan and Iraq. Estimates on how many have been affected by post-traumatic stress vary widely — from 4% to 20%, according to the report. Meanwhile, suicide among troops spiked crisis proportions. The rate of suicide doubled between 2005 and 2012, according to the Pentagon. It has stabilized but has not diminished; the rate remains about the same for the part of the American public that it compares with, about 20 per 100,000 people.

The key intervention to prevent suicide involves talking to the service member about their access to firearms, Hepner said. It’s also one of the most sensitive, given the nature of their work and that many troops own their own guns.

“This is important for service members because suicide death by firearms is the most common method,” Hepner said. “So the provider needs to have that discussion about access to firearms. Not only their service weapon but their access to personal weapons.”

Guns accounted for 68% of suicides by active-duty troops in 2014, according to the Pentagon.

Commanders can be enlisted to put weapons out of troops’ reach, and family members may be asked to do so at home, she said. One reason that doesn’t happen more often, she said, is the stigma attached to mental health issues, and the effect notifying superiors may have on careers.

“These can be quite difficult conversations to have with service members,” Hepner sid. “Certainly limiting access to their service weapon would involve notifying their command.”

Researchers also found that one-third of troops with depression had received a prescription for benzodiazepine, an anti-anxiety medication.

“It is explicitly mentioned in guidelines for treatment of PTSD that benzodiazepines are contraindicated,” Hepner said. “We continue to see a relatively high rate of prescription for a medication we would hope would not be prescribed.”


Link to blog I wrote about subject:  https://saymber.com/2017/03/17/17-march-2017-more-distractions-from-the-affordable-care-act-fiasco-the-us-governments-latest-solution-for-paying-for-the-true-cost-of-war-and-bernie-sanders-repeated-warnings-going-unheard/

Back in March of this year, the House voted to approve a bill that would allow these same veterans easier access to firearms!  Very sad.   What their doing that said to me was they’d rather make it easier for veterans to die than to do the hard part, the funding, taking responsibility for restoring them to meaningful and productive lives!  It’s easy to pluck a 18 year old from a small town, dress them up in a uniform, put a gun in their hands and send them off to war than it is to put together that same person who is now half or less the person physically and or psychologically they were after they come back from the war zone. 

Source Internet: Quote from a past Governor of my home State SD, George McGovern,

America

House OKs Bill Making It Tougher To Keep ‘Mentally Incompetent’ Vets From Buying Guns

Enlarge this image

A House-approved bill would require a court hearing before a U.S. veteran is deemed mentally unfit to own a gun. Here, rifles are seen at a gun shop in Merrimack, N.H., last year. Dominick Reuter/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Dominick Reuter/AFP/Getty Images

A House-approved bill would require a court hearing before a U.S. veteran is deemed mentally unfit to own a gun. Here, rifles are seen at a gun shop in Merrimack, N.H., last year.

Dominick Reuter/AFP/Getty Images

Updated at 1:55 p.m. ET

The House has approved legislation that would make it harder to keep veterans who are “mentally incapacitated, deemed mentally incompetent” or prone to blackouts from buying guns. Critics of the bill say it could raise the suicide rate among veterans — a rate that has risen in the past decade.

At least a dozen Democrats joined Republicans to support the bill, which was approved by a 240-175 vote.

The legislation would add a new hurdle to the process of blocking a veteran whose mental competence is in question from owning a gun. While the Department of Veterans Affairs currently adds the names of veterans it deems unfit to own a deadly weapon to a federal background check system, the bill would require a court hearing before that determination is made.

“About 170,000 disabled veterans are deemed mentally incompetent by the VA,” NPR’s Quil Lawrence reports. “A VA-approved guardian makes some medical and financial decisions for them. Their names go on an FBI list so they can’t purchase guns — House Republicans sponsored the Veterans’ Second Amendment Protection Act to change that.”

Backers of the bill, such as Rep. Phil Roe, R-Tenn., the chair of the Veterans’ Affairs Committee, say it would help veterans avoid being caught up in a bureaucracy that can make it tough to remove a negative label. Roe also cited the importance of “removing the stigma of mentally ill people — that because someone is mentally ill, they’re a danger to themselves or others.”

On the other side of the issue, Rep. Anthony Brown, D-Md., said, “When a determination is made that a veteran is mentally incompetent or incapacitated — for whatever reason — that determination is made to protect them, not to punish or deprive them.”

Critics of the bill include retired Gen. Peter Chiarelli, the former vice chief of staff of the U.S. Army. Speaking to Quil about why he opposed the bill, Chiarelli said, “Every single study you can read on this shows you that people in crisis — because suicide is such a spontaneous event — when they separate themselves from personal weapons the incidence of suicide goes down tremendously.”

The House legislation will now go to the Senate. It would change U.S. law by adding this section to sections governing veterans’ benefits:

Conditions for treatment of certain persons as adjudicated mentally incompetent for certain purposes

“In any case arising out of the administration by the Secretary of laws and benefits under this title, a person who is mentally incapacitated, deemed mentally incompetent, or experiencing an extended loss of consciousness shall not be considered adjudicated as a mental defective under subsection (d)(4) or (g)(4) of section 922 of title 18 without the order or finding of a judge, magistrate, or other judicial authority of competent jurisdiction that such person is a danger to himself or herself or others.”.

7 Aug 2017 Dream and the act of “Adulting” (Abandoning Adulthood My Official Letter of Resignation piece by Maureen)

4 Aug 2017 – we are so grateful for Spot. She is an active dog and because of that she helps keep us more active. She’s our family athletics coordinator! 🙂

Good morning, it’s 8:16 am as I start to write.  We had a storm come through last night and by the looks of things, we got a bit of rain.  Very grateful for that and grateful that the severe thunderstorm warning we got before bed ended up only being a warning!  It’s so funny with thunder.  I was almost asleep and then it was like, “We now interrupt your sleep for these 30 seconds of thunder.”  (Kyle’s words there). Sleep all through the night remains elusive for both Kyle and I.

I had some interesting dreams last night, I remember snippets of them.  I dreamt about being with some old men and one of them telling/saying to me, “Do you want me to tell you how old you are?” I said something like, “3,000” and the man said, “try 5,000.” Other dreams were of being in an old parlor or Victorian type of settings.  I remember men sitting on the deck of a ship.  My mind must be sorting through a bunch of stuff I’ve been looking at in my waking world like the Victorian Trading Company catalog, the Aspern Papers film set posts from Jonathan Rhys Meyers and other stuff.

Jonathan Rhys Meyers To Star In ‘The Aspern Papers’

I don’t believe the person I am is that old but what do we know of our souls?  The energy our flesh encapsulates?  The flesh is just a suite, a covering for the soul.  The soul can be as old as time itself because there is no such thing as time in the unseen realms….for any other beings but humans is there such a thing as time!  The dream realm in me obviously knows that.

Another conscious Key that may have unlocked last nights travels could have been this awesome post, Abandoning Adulthood, from my friend Ally.  I have been thinking about this topic a lot lately!

Source: Internet/aka friend FB post: Abandoning Adulthood by Maureen

She was looking for something about adulthood, and found it.  Ironically, just yesterday morning Kyle and I were trying to figure out why we were so crabby and irritable and realized it was because we were having to be adults or what we call “Adulting.” We had made an appointment for Link to have his back left leg looked at and didn’t want to take him even though it was the right thing to do.  We had barely dropped him off and were getting groceries when the vet called to come back for him! Yay!  We dodged the almost $200 x-ray expense that is conveniently not covered under the Wellness plan we have both the dogs on….sigh.  What the hell is insurance of any kind really good for?!  It never covers what you need it to even though you are paying enough for it to cover everything!  Anyhew…we didn’t get away without spending money on an anti-inflammatory and in a couple of weeks we’ll see what’s going on oh yeah, he’s “obese”….sounds like he’s a little old man not a dog right?!

6 Aug 2017 – Link relaxing before Vet visit. He doesn’t look obese to us but apparently he is.

On the way to the grocery store after we initially dropped him off, we were in the car bitching about EVERYTHING!  I realized we were doing the thing we try very hard to avoid doing and that’s focusing on what’s wrong and not what we want to be going on instead.  While President Trump it seems like  like he’d rather be golfing instead of dealing with world issues and appears to be throwing away every opportunity put in front of him to make the world a better place,  it’s not entirely his fault America is the mess it seems to be.  A secret part of me thinks, is hoping, his being President and what he’s been doing is just some sort of epic reverse psychology experiment!  I wouldn’t want to be President or any form of government official these days!  It’s so easy to solve the worlds problems from the seat of our cars, kitchen tables, video game chat and social media forums but quite another to actually be the ones who have to sort it all out!  Anyways, Kyle and I finally talked ourselves to where the source of the anger was and it came back to us.  We decided we would rather be doing anything else but what we had to do….goofing off!  This process we went through is something I learned to do in AA with the acronym HALT (Hungry, Angry, Lonely, Tired) and doing a self examination before blaming others through the day and just before bed for things when your angry or upset….making amends.

Anyhew…..it’s Monday again….time to get on with it.  I hope that wherever and whenever this finds you, you have everything you need inside and out to be fulfilled.  I hope you know that even if it seems like nobody cares about you, there are people all over the world, myself included, that say a prayer of love and thanksgiving for you every day.    

 

5 Aug 2017 The conversation never ends

Good morning to you.  It’s 10:52 am as I start to write to you on this muggy, hot Saturday!  I want to go out and “do my thing” where I put on my music and interact with nature but know it will be difficult so I’m procrastinating about it.  I can only imagine if I had to be out there all the time with no other options.  Part of my gratitude list always includes having shelter with working climate control (A/C)!

In the month of May I was having one of my altered states experiences.  Kyle calls them “episodes” and this time he let me work through it at home because I refused to be anywhere else to deal with it.  He just let me do my rituals and process through whatever was going on and it was hard but we got through it.  Going through what we did is far more wonderful for me than it has ever been for him.  People out there who go through what Kyle and I do, know this truth.  Being on the outside versus being within the experience is very different.  For him it’s a lot like keeping the lid on a toddler and for me it’s a magical kingdom every day.  I get to witness first hand what it’s like when God uses all the life created on this planet to have various experiences of reality.  Kyle gets to babysit while it happens so I don’t get hurt!  We’ve been talking as I’m writing this…lots of tears on my part because with some distance from it happening, it hurts me to know he had to go through so much for me and more than once now!  This time Kyle became the involuntary Shaman I was asking for in  a previous blog about this subject! (https://saymber.com/2017/05/07/7-may-2017-caretakers-can-get-ptsd-too-poem-bird-drawings-from-this-morning-and-the-shamanic-view-of-mental-illness-jayson-gaddis/)

7 May 2017 – This man came forward during my drawing session this morning. To me he is a Yogi, a guru, a wise man. I got a very living and positive feeling spending time with him.

On the 19th of May Kyle, his brother Drew and I were out and about waiting to see Guardians of the Galaxy 2.  I was walking to Half Price Books and suddenly just stopped and wrote this message in my pink spirit book:

19 May 2017/1:13 pm

19 and 20 May 2017 my Pink spirit book messages:

“They are not conscious of the unseen like action figures moved and motivated by an unseen force.”

One day, during this time period I was sitting outside and a suddenly this huge wasp appeared and it was dragging a lifeless spider in front of me like it was showing me something.  It would stop, look at me, then start dragging the body again.  Another day a huge moth I’ve never seen before came and perched on my cot after refusing to leave my hand for almost an hour it seemed.  I’ve had many experiences like that with insects and other life forms.  It’s a conversation and there are no words….just energy between us.  The energy I guess they are picking up from me is that I love them, am interested in them, I want to understand them….mean them no harm!

On the people front, it was like every conversation, every gesture….even driving in the car was deliberate, measured and there was purpose and an underlying meaning or conversation going on from what people normally see.  There was a collective consciousness at work that seemed to be controlled by a central point.  One being using all of existence in my perception to coordinate each and every thing I was experiencing….we are talking epic choreographing!  There were things happening that I couldn’t explain before my eyes, magic-like with smells and sounds appearing out of nowhere.   For example I could all the sudden smell my Mom’s perfume and it was like she was in the room for a second…a visit.  I would wake up smelling fresh baked bread so I got up and actually made it.  I told Kyle it’s like the Mr. Smith’s from the Matrix only it’s not just one guy but all of creation acting in unison instead.   The experience this last time was like truly seeing the energy God of my understanding at work in all creation and they knew I could see them back…were allowing me to see them.  Hope that makes sense!

This past month has been different and the conversation seems to have changed but it’s still going on.  Thankfully for both of us, just not on such a scale as happened in May!  I hope my sharing some of my/our experiences and insights can be useful somehow to anyone out there who may need it.  Stay in the light of loving energy as much as you can.

Sometimes our worst enemy is the person reflected in the mirror. One of the hardest things I’ve ever done is to look at myself and tell that person I unconditionally loved them!

(sharing again here also)

http://www.jaysongaddis.com/the-shamanic-view-of-mental-illness/

The Shamanic View of Mental Illness

by Stephanie Marohn (featuring Malidoma Patrice Somé) (Excerpted from The Natural Medicine Guide to Schizophrenia, pages 178-189, or The Natural Medicine Guide to Bi-polar Disorder)

What a Shaman Sees in A Mental Hospital

In the shamanic view, mental illness signals “the birth of a healer,” explains Malidoma Patrice Somé.  Thus, mental disorders are spiritual emergencies, spiritual crises, and need to be regarded as such to aid the healer in being born.

What those in the West view as mental illness, the Dagara people regard as “good news from the other world.”  The person going through the crisis has been chosen as a medium for a message to the community that needs to be communicated from the spirit realm.  “Mental disorder, behavioral disorder of all kinds, signal the fact that two obviously incompatible energies have merged into the same field,” says Dr. Somé.  These disturbances result when the person does not get assistance in dealing with the presence of the energy from the spirit realm.

One of the things Dr. Somé encountered when he first came to the United States in 1980 for graduate study was how this country deals with mental illness.  When a fellow student was sent to a mental institute due to “nervous depression,” Dr. Somé went to visit him.

I was so shocked.  That was the first time I was brought face to face with what is done here to people exhibiting the same symptoms I’ve seen in my village.”  What struck Dr. Somé was that the attention given to such symptoms was based on pathology, on the idea that the condition is something that needs to stop.  This was in complete opposition to the way his culture views such a situation.  As he looked around the stark ward at the patients, some in straitjackets, some zoned out on medications, others screaming, he observed to himself, “So this is how the healers who are attempting to be born are treated in this culture.  What a loss!  What a loss that a person who is finally being aligned with a power from the other world is just being wasted.”

Another way to say this, which may make more sense to the Western mind, is that we in the West are not trained in how to deal or even taught to acknowledge the existence of psychic phenomena, the spiritual world.  In fact, psychic abilities are denigrated.  When energies from the spiritual world emerge in a Western psyche, that individual is completely unequipped to integrate them or even recognize what is happening.  The result can be terrifying.  Without the proper context for and assistance in dealing with the breakthrough from another level of reality, for all practical purposes, the person is insane.  Heavy dosing with anti-psychotic drugs compounds the problem and prevents the integration that could lead to soul development and growth in the individual who has received these energies.

On the mental ward, Dr Somé saw a lot of “beings” hanging around the patients, “entities” that are invisible to most people but that shamans and psychics are able to see.  “They were causing the crisis in these people,” he says.  It appeared to him that these beings were trying to get the medications and their effects out of the bodies of the people the beings were trying to merge with, and were increasing the patients’ pain in the process.  “The beings were acting almost like some kind of excavator in the energy field of people.  They were really fierce about that.  The people they were doing that to were just screaming and yelling,” he said.  He couldn’t stay in that environment and had to leave.

In the Dagara tradition, the community helps the person reconcile the energies of both worlds–“the world of the spirit that he or she is merged with, and the village and community.”  That person is able then to serve as a bridge between the worlds and help the living with information and healing they need.  Thus, the spiritual crisis ends with the birth of another healer.  “The other world’s relationship with our world is one of sponsorship,” Dr. Somé explains.  “More often than not, the knowledge and skills that arise from this kind of merger are a knowledge or a skill that is provided directly from the other world.”

The beings who were increasing the pain of the inmates on the mental hospital ward were actually attempting to merge with the inmates in order to get messages through to this world.  The people they had chosen to merge with were getting no assistance in learning how to be a bridge between the worlds and the beings’ attempts to merge were thwarted.  The result was the sustaining of the initial disorder of energy and the aborting of the birth of a healer.

“The Western culture has consistently ignored the birth of the healer,” states Dr. Somé.  “Consequently, there will be a tendency from the other world to keep trying as many people as possible in an attempt to get somebody’s attention.  They have to try harder.”  The spirits are drawn to people whose senses have not been anesthetized.  “The sensitivity is pretty much read as an invitation to come in,” he notes.

Those who develop so-called mental disorders are those who are sensitive, which is viewed in Western culture as oversensitivity.  Indigenous cultures don’t see it that way and, as a result, sensitive people don’t experience themselves as overly sensitive.  In the West, “it is the overload of the culture they’re in that is just wrecking them,” observes Dr. Somé.  The frenetic pace, the bombardment of the senses, and the violent energy that characterize Western culture can overwhelm sensitive people.

Schizophrenia and Foreign Energy

With schizophrenia, there is a special “receptivity to a flow of images and information, which cannot be controlled,” stated Dr. Somé.  “When this kind of rush occurs at a time that is not personally chosen, and particularly when it comes with images that are scary and contradictory, the person goes into a frenzy.”

What is required in this situation is first to separate the person’s energy from the extraneous foreign energies, by using shamanic practice (what is known as a “sweep”) to clear the latter out of the individual’s aura.  With the clearing of their energy field, the person no longer picks up a flood of information and so no longer has a reason to be scared and disturbed, explains Dr. Somé.

Then it is possible to help the person align with the energy of the spirit being attempting to come through from the other world and give birth to the healer.  The blockage of that emergence is what creates problems.  “The energy of the healer is a high-voltage energy,” he observes.  “When it is blocked, it just burns up the person.  It’s like a short-circuit.  Fuses are blowing.  This is why it can be really scary, and I understand why this culture prefers to confine these people.  Here they are yelling and screaming, and they’re put into a straitjacket.  That’s a sad image.”  Again, the shamanic approach is to work on aligning the energies so there is no blockage, “fuses” aren’t blowing, and the person can become the healer they are meant to be.

It needs to be noted at this point, however, that not all of the spirit beings that enter a person’s energetic field are there for the purposes of promoting healing.  There are negative energies as well, which are undesirable presences in the aura.  In those cases, the shamanic approach is to remove them from the aura, rather than work to align the discordant energies.

Alex:  Crazy in the USA, Healer in Africa

To test his belief that the shamanic view of mental illness holds true in the Western world as well as in indigenous cultures, Dr. Somé took a mental patient back to Africa with him, to his village.  “I was prompted by my own curiosity to find out whether there’s truth in the universality that mental illness could be connected with an alignment with a being from another world,” says Dr. Somé.

Alex was an 18-year-old American who had suffered a psychotic break when he was 14.  He had hallucinations, was suicidal, and went through cycles of dangerously severe depression.  He was in a mental hospital and had been given a lot of drugs, but nothing was helping.  “The parents had done everything–unsuccessfully,” says Dr. Somé.  “They didn’t know what else to do.”

With their permission, Dr. Somé took their son to Africa.  “After eight months there, Alex had become quite normal, Dr. Somé reports.  He was even able to participate with healers in the business of healing; sitting with them all day long and helping them, assisting them in what they were doing with their clients . . . . He spent about four years in my village.”  Alex stayed by choice, not because he needed more healing.  He felt, “much safer in the village than in America.”

To bring his energy and that of the being from the spiritual realm into alignment, Alex went through a shamanic ritual designed for that purpose, although it was slightly different from the one used with the Dagara people.  “He wasn’t born in the village, so something else applied.  But the result was similar, even though the ritual was not literally the same,” explains Dr. Somé.  The fact that aligning the energy worked to heal Alex demonstrated to Dr. Somé that the connection between other beings and mental illness is indeed universal.

After the ritual, Alex began to share the messages that the spirit being had for this world.  Unfortunately, the people he was talking to didn’t speak English (Dr. Somé was away at that point).  The whole experience led, however, to Alex’s going to college to study psychology.  He returned to the United States after four years because “he discovered that all the things that he needed to do had been done, and he could then move on with his life.”

The last that Dr. Somé heard was that Alex was in graduate school in psychology at Harvard.  No one had thought he would ever be able to complete undergraduate studies, much less get an advanced degree.

Dr. Somé sums up what Alex’s mental illness was all about:  “He was reaching out.  It was an emergency call.  His job and his purpose was to be a healer.  He said no one was paying attention to that.”

After seeing how well the shamanic approach worked for Alex, Dr. Somé concluded that spirit beings are just as much an issue in the West as in his community in Africa.  “Yet the question still remains, the answer to this problem must be found here, instead of having to go all the way overseas to seek the answer.  There has to be a way in which a little bit of attention beyond the pathology of this whole experience leads to the possibility of coming up with the proper ritual to help people.

Longing for Spiritual Connection

A common thread that Dr. Somé has noticed in “mental” disorders in the West is “a very ancient ancestral energy that has been placed in stasis, that finally is coming out in the person.”  His job then is to trace it back, to go back in time to discover what that spirit is.  In most cases, the spirit is connected to nature, especially with mountains or big rivers, he says.

In the case of mountains, as an example to explain the phenomenon, “it’s a spirit of the mountain that is walking side by side with the person and, as a result, creating a time-space distortion that is affecting the person caught in it.”  What is needed is a merger or alignment of the two energies, “so the person and the mountain spirit become one.”  Again, the shaman conducts a specific ritual to bring about this alignment.

Dr. Somé believes that he encounters this situation so often in the United States because “most of the fabric of this country is made up of the energy of the machine, and the result of that is the disconnection and the severing of the past.  You can run from the past, but you can’t hide from it.”  The ancestral spirit of the natural world comes visiting.  “It’s not so much what the spirit wants as it is what the person wants,” he says.  “The spirit sees in us a call for something grand, something that will make life meaningful, and so the spirit is responding to that.”

That call, which we don’t even know we are making, reflects “a strong longing for a profound connection, a connection that transcends materialism and possession of things and moves into a tangible cosmic dimension.  Most of this longing is unconscious, but for spirits, conscious or unconscious doesn’t make any difference.”  They respond to either.

As part of the ritual to merge the mountain and human energy, those who are receiving the “mountain energy” are sent to a mountain area of their choice, where they pick up a stone that calls to them.  They bring that stone back for the rest of the ritual and then keep it as a companion; some even carry it around with them.  “The presence of the stone does a lot in tuning the perceptive ability of the person,” notes Dr. Somé.  “They receive all kinds of information that they can make use of, so it’s like they get some tangible guidance from the other world as to how to live their life.”

When it is the “river energy,” those being called go to the river and, after speaking to the river spirit, find a water stone to bring back for the same kind of ritual as with the mountain spirit.

“People think something extraordinary must be done in an extraordinary situation like this,” he says.  That’s not usually the case.  Sometimes it is as simple as carrying a stone.

A Sacred Ritual Approach to Mental Illness

One of the gifts a shaman can bring to the Western world is to help people rediscover ritual, which is so sadly lacking.  “The abandonment of ritual can be devastating.  From the spiritual view, ritual is inevitable and necessary if one is to live,” Dr. Somé writes in Ritual:  Power, Healing, and Community. “To say that ritual is needed in the industrialized world is an understatement.  We have seen in my own people that it is probably impossible to live a sane life without it.”

Dr. Somé did not feel that the rituals from his traditional village could simply be transferred to the West, so over his years of shamanic work here, he has designed rituals that meet the very different needs of this culture.  Although the rituals change according to the individual or the group involved, he finds that there is a need for certain rituals in general.

One of these involves helping people discover that their distress is coming from the fact that they are “called by beings from the other world to cooperate with them in doing healing work.”  Ritual allows them to move out of the distress and accept that calling.

Another ritual need relates to initiation.  In indigenous cultures all over the world, young people are initiated into adulthood when they reach a certain age.  The lack of such initiation in the West is part of the crisis that people are in here, says Dr. Somé.  He urges communities to bring together “the creative juices of people who have had this kind of experience, in an attempt to come up with some kind of an alternative ritual that would at least begin to put a dent in this kind of crisis.”

Another ritual that repeatedly speaks to the needs of those coming to him for help entails making a bonfire, and then putting into the bonfire “items that are symbolic of issues carried inside the individuals . . . It might be the issues of anger and frustration against an ancestor who has left a legacy of murder and enslavement or anything, things that the descendant has to live with,” he explains.  “If these are approached as things that are blocking the human imagination, the person’s life purpose, and even the person’s view of life as something that can improve, then it makes sense to begin thinking in terms of how to turn that blockage into a roadway that can lead to something more creative and more fulfilling.”

The example of issues with an ancestors touches on rituals designed by Dr. Somé that address a serious dysfunction in Western society and in the process “trigger enlightenment” in participants.  These are ancestral rituals, and the dysfunction they are aimed at is the mass turning-of-the-back on ancestors.  Some of the spirits trying to come through, as described earlier, may be “ancestors who want to merge with a descendant in an attempt to heal what they weren’t able to do while in their physical body.”

“Unless the relationship between the living and the dead is in balance, chaos ensues,” he says.  “The Dagara believe that, if such an imbalance exists, it is the duty of the living to heal their ancestors.  If these ancestors are not healed, their sick energy will haunt the souls and psyches of those who are responsible for helping them.”  The rituals focus on healing the relationship with our ancestors, both specific issues of an individual ancestor and the larger cultural issues contained in our past.  Dr. Somé has seen extraordinary healing occur at these rituals.

Taking a sacred ritual approach to mental illness rather than regarding the person as a pathological case gives the person affected–and indeed the community at large–the opportunity to begin looking at it from that vantage point too, which leads to “a whole plethora of opportunities and ritual initiative that can be very, very beneficial to everyone present,” states Dr. Somé.

Lastly, since I get so many private emails about this post from people who have a “mental illness” or think they are in a spiritual emergency and want answers, please ask to join our private community on Facebook here. It could be a safe place to learn from others… Subscribe to my newsletter and get the free mini-ebook on the big relationship secret.

 

 

4 Aug 2017 Divine clouds, getting over the people suite (NAACP and Missouri travel advisory), cherry red dawn and chalk drawing

Good morning to you.  It’s 9:45 am as I start to write to you.  I hope this finds you well wherever and whenever you are in your time and space.  We are doing well so far on this lovely Friday.  I have to admit I’m in a bit of shock that it’s Friday already!  Where did the week go?!  ZOOM!!!

Yesterday I was out on my cot and saw the sky was doing amazing things and got a couple of pictures.  I just go to a divine place when I’m sky gazing!  God (Adda – came to me in recent meditation) and the master canvas.

A message came to me this morning that I have had on my mind for quite some time and that is this phrase, “Get over the suite!”  I know it’s a message that has been translated into gazillions of sermons, pep talks, expensive seminars, books, music, movies and meme’s so why then, in 2017, has a travel advisory been issued by the NAACP for minorities visiting Missouri?!  Where is the disconnect?  Why just Missouri when these sorts of things involving minorities are happening in states all over America and have been for a long time?!  As a nation are we going to allow ourselves to lose the hundreds of years of progress we’ve made in equal rights in the course of less than a year?!  Not me!  My Grandpa Becker put his life at risk to help people of color be able to vote and I want to believe his efforts weren’t in vain!

Newspaper clipping about Grandpa Harold Becker and voter registration in Mississippi

http://www.naacp.org/ – link to the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People main web site

St. Louis tourism industry asks NAACP to level the playing field or rescind travel advisory

Posted 10:31 pm, August 3, 2017, by Gerron Jordan, Updated at 10:30PM, August 3, 2017

ST. LOUIS – Fallout from the NAACP’s recent advisory for minorities traveling to Missouri continues. On Thursday, the local convention and visitors bureau, Explore St. Louis, sent a letter to partners questioning the fairness of the advisory and urging the NAACP to rescind it.

“We are puzzled as to why a travel advisory would just be issued for the state of Missouri when 38 other states and the federal government use the same standards,” said Explore St. Louis President, Kitty Ratcliffe.

The standards Ratcliffe are referring to are detailed in Senate Bill 43; the piece of legislation recently signed by Governor Eric Greitens which changes the standards that must be met in order to sue for workplace discrimination.

“And yet they are discriminating against Missouri for something that 38 other states and the federal government do,” said Ratcliffe. “We would just ask to be treated fairly.”

“I don’t tell her how to run conventions, I don’t need her to tell us how to fight for civil right,” said Adolphus Pruitt, president of the St. Louis chapter of the NAACP.

Pruitt says while Senate Bill 43 was a factor, there were many others that went into the NAACP issuing the travel advisory.

“It talked about the disparities in stops, it talked about somebody traveling through the state got stopped and wound up arrested and dead, it talked about a number of different things” Pruitt said. “What it said was there is a totality of things going on in the state that has raised some concerns.”

Amid those concerns, Pruitt says the organization isn’t telling minorities to stay away from Missouri, just to be aware of things that have impacted minorities. Pruitt is hopeful other leaders don’t challenge the advisory, but challenge the conditions that led to it.

“I hope that it would reinforce to all the folks in the state who have the ability to address the issues raised in the advisory to sit down and lets roll up our sleeves and work through this matter,” he said.

Filed in: News


What I have come to understand for myself is this body I am in is merely a suite of clothes made of flesh and blood.  What you think you see is an optical illusion and unless you talk to me and or actually take the time to get to know me. you don’t know me!  You don’t know me if all you are basing your opinion on is what you see with your eyes or what someone else has told you about me. 

It’s taken many years, but where I’m at with people is behavior.  I don’t care what your sexual identity, your color, your spiritual/religious beliefs or even what sports team you like…..it’s your behavior.  It’s how you treat yourself, other lives (dogs, cats, etc)  and me that defines how I feel about you.  Love to you today! 

3 August 2017 Spider webs in the trees, ritual dream and markers to our animal selves

Good morning to you. It’s 8:22 am as I begin to write to you. Just back from the morning dog walk. The fog is clearing and as we walked I noticed the amazing handiwork of some of natures finest craftbeings spiders.  Spiderwebs….lots and lots of them and they were lit up by the morning dew and sunlight. I feel it’s important to notice and appreciate such works. It is these “little things” that make living on this earth such a miracle.

Kyle and I have not been sleeping well at all for what seems like two weeks. This time it is mostly Kyle that is waking up in the middle of the night and unable to go back to sleep. The month prior it was me….it goes in phases. Well when he leaves the bed and so do the dogs is when I have some pretty epic dreams. Is it the energy levels are too high in the room? Who knows right?!

Anyhew. The dream I want to share with you I had just before really getting up this morning and it was pretty wild. It never ceases to amaze me what snippets of my life my brain decides to splice together!

So the dream was about some church ritual that involved three people. It was me and two men . There was something about angels and I saw names written in an ancient book. I’m not sure if we were the angels or the blood in the vials we were each wearing was of angels. Each of us were wearing these vials of blood and a bunch of other amulets. One of the men, a blonde who kind of looked like my Uncle Lauren and David Bowie said about us wearing all these necklaces, “I never wear this much stuff. I always just wear….(can’t remember what he said).” The three of us were rebelling against this ritual we were forced to be performing. The two men managed to crush the vials of blood they were wearing and throw them into a swirling red vortex that was at the altar. As I was beginning to wake from the dream, I can remember trying to crush my vial against the stone floor of the church but it wouldn’t break. Then I saw the other two men, like ghosts, outside the church and then I woke up.

13 Aug 2012 Jackie Drawing – lots of symbolism here (3 August – looking at this again today, there are elements of my dream there)

I’ve mentioned in my blogs here before that I believe the waking world will give us a certain key combinations in our conscious world that will then unlock a dream in the subconscious realms. It works like that for me anyways. I’m thinking the vials of blood in the dream come from me seeing posts about people selling vials of GANS on the Golden Age of Gans Facebook page. Like I said, my mind puts together some pretty wild movies and I don’t mind sharing them. May be somebody will find them interesting fodder for a science fiction movie lol.

Source: https://www.facebook.com/groups/GoldenAgeofGans/ – Ihno Y Papendick Golden Age of Gans pendants (just one of many examples people have made)

Source Internet – http://www.nick.com/legend-of-korra/ – Korra on her spirit dragon.

During my meditation after I started to wake up, I started to think about how it seems like each of us has markers that probably can trace back to beings in nature we have the strongest in us. I’ve noticed certain characteristics in different people that seem to correspond to say reptiles, wolves, deer, cows, ocean mammals etc. What came forth from my inner voice for me was “dragon-bird.” The dragon/reptile comes from me and my really dry skin! I have found using lava rocks is useful in exfoliating. We all shed our skin, so it’s something we all have in common. Just seems like in my family we have an extreme case of it. The bird part comes from how I get when I’m outside and so many dreams I’ve had of flying. When I get my headphones on and spend time with the clouds, I just fly lol. Lately I’ve had several birds, mainly a large swarm of swallows and a few other larger “watcher” birds, start to appear when I’m out doing that. I’m probably stirring up a bunch of food for them in my movements and sounds! A magical and symbiotic relationship of sorts! It’s special to me that they are swallows. Kyle’s Grandpa Edward who left this world on 18 April 2013 had swallow tattoos. Whenever I see swallows I always say, “Hello Ed!”

2 Aug 2009 – Kyle’s Grandpa Edward Wygant, when we celebrated his 75th birthday together at his home in the Poconos of Pennsylvania!

Anyhew…will close. Thank you Mom and Les for the letters – got another one from you just this morning Les. Real letter writing for me this weekend!