Monday, 31 August 2009

Digestion & Discretion...

Maybe the hardest lesson to learn at the moment is that whilst we all have friends and mentors to guide and support us on our journeys in life, it is time to realise that the journey each of us takes through life is unique. By all means listen to the words of others, but don’t be spoon-fed – we need to find out for ourselves, listen to our intuition and be guided by our higher Self. Like any student – regurgitating someone else’s words is empty and without meaning. The only true way to learn is to digest and form our own conclusions.

In this world of new-age spirituality, new ‘gurus’ are emerging all the time – new books and ‘channellings’, new mentors and people to lead the way. This has been the case throughout time, yet there is a risk that ego can become entangled in the mix and the root-cause of the ‘messages’ are lost.

It is hard to resist the power and joy that comes from being hero-worshipped or having a league of followers, yet only the true enlightened souls know that this misses the point. By all means, hand out advice, show new ideas or techniques, but then let them go – let them find their own ways.

We are human, and ego is part of the human condition. It is hard to avoid, but on the spiritual path it can become disillusioning or even dangerous.

It is similar with the many ‘new’ forms of healing emerging – my belief is maybe too simple for many, but I believe that healing is healing, and that Spirit is Spirit. It matters not how we choose to heal, but the reasons why we do it. If the intention is right, then the healing energy will flow. It is not necessary to keep up with the latest trends and learn every new technique and idea out there – after all these are simply the ideas of someone else who stepped back and listened to their intuition. So, why not find your own way?

The message seems clear: if we all step back and listen to our intuition and allow ourselves to be guided by the Divine energy that flows within us all, we will be shown the way. Our soul path is a personal journey; it is not about keeping up with trends, fitting in, or boosting our ego through hero worship. It is purely about our relationship with the Divine. At the end of the day, what else is there?

Over the coming weeks, the planets will start to show each of us the way forwards - we need to be ready to listen...

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Baggage...

It seems that the somewhat relentless flow of personal challenges are reaching a peak now, which is great news for many of us who are almost buckling under the pressure.

This has been a testing time, and it seems that by being gently ‘forced’ to cut out the inessential in our lives is paying off. Life is beginning to seem lighter now and more in focus. It’s not even that a sense of clarity has emerged; as for many of us the path ahead still seems vague and undefined (akin to someone trying to get a picture into focus – there are odd glimpses, but full 20/20 clarity has yet to be achieved).

What has become clear though, is a need to live consciously – a need to be truly alive and aware of ourselves and our nature. It is all too easy to get bogged down by life and the mundane, and when this routine gets ingrained, it can be hard to see anything other than the banal. It can be hard to see the myriad of rainbow colours, when we see the world in black and white.

Yet, this past few weeks has seen an increasing need to face life issues head on, to deal with the seemingly mundane in order to let go of the baggage which we all carry. Sometimes, it is easier to keep our heads buried in the sand in order to avoid the reality, which we have to face.

There is a growing sense of emotional tension both within and around us as each of us start to assert our true Selves out into the world. This may shock and surprise those close, but it seems that the time for bending ourselves out of shape has come to an end. It is a time to be true to our Selves – to be free from the baggage that holds us back and keeps us ‘in line’ with what’s expected of us.

It is time to travel lighter through life, and whilst this may involve embracing some harsh truths about others, and our Selves, it seems to be a necessary part of the journey.

What this past few weeks has clarified is a sense that by letting go of the inessential, we are able to put all of our heart and soul into achieving our dreams and finding the stillness within.

The external chaos is starting to have less and less effect on each of us, as we find inner clarity and guidance. This is not to say that the external world should be ignored, but we are all mirrors and our inner world reflects our state of being or reality into our outer worlds. The world is what we make it after all…

Sunday, 23 August 2009

The Fringe Benefits of Failure...

'Ultimately, we all have to decide for ourselves what constitutes failure, but the world is quite eager to give you a set of criteria if you let it...The fears my parents had had for me, and that I had had for myself, had both come to pass, and by every usual standard, I was the biggest failure I knew…Now, I am not going to stand here and tell you that failure is fun. That period of my life was a dark one… I had no idea how far the tunnel extended, and for a long time, any light at the end of it was a hope rather than a reality.

So why do I talk about the benefits of failure? Simply because failure meant a stripping away of the inessential. I stopped pretending to myself that I was anything other than what I was, and began to direct all my energy into finishing the only work that mattered to me. Had I really succeeded at anything else, I might never have found the determination to succeed in the one arena I believed I truly belonged. I was set free, because my greatest fear had already been realised, and I was still alive… And so rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life.

It is impossible to live without failing at something, unless you live so cautiously that you might as well not have lived at all - in which case, you fail by default...

The knowledge that you have emerged wiser and stronger from setbacks means that you are, ever after, secure in your ability to survive. You will never truly know yourself, or the strength of your relationships, until both have been tested by adversity. Such knowledge is a true gift, for all that it is painfully won, and it has been worth more to me than any qualification I ever earned’.


Extract from a speech by JK Rowling - The Fringe Benefits of Failure.

Thursday, 20 August 2009

Discombobulated...

I have had to check my diary a few times this week, just to make sure that it wasn’t September and Mercury had gone retrograde! It has been a week of miscommunications and hiccups when it comes to getting things organised. Frustrating would be one way to describe it…

The build up of retrograde celestial energy is reaching a crescendo, and yesterday’s New Moon stirred up the Sacred Dance (retrograde Neptune, Chiron and Jupiter), and in addition Mars is facing up to retrograde Pluto for a clash of will and release of energy.

So, this seems to be behind the chaos.

As I have written about before, we are being challenged to go within and to truly face our demons. We are being pushed at looking right into the core of our souls to establish what is truly essential in our lives. At the same time, we are being asked to let go of the inessential – and that it causing a great deal of angst for a great many people. We often hold on to things in life for sentimental reasons, or because they may come in useful. And of course, this release is not just on a physical level; but emotionally, mentally and spiritually as well.

The challenges and frustrations of the moment do seem to be focusing the mind and soul towards what is truly important in life. Sometimes, there are things that seem so important, so big that we cannot see a way ahead without them. And then an obstacle appears which re-focuses the eye to see a much bigger, wider picture that changes our perspective so much we can forget what all the fuss was about in the first place!

This seems to be the crux of what is happening at the moment. In addition, we are being shown that getting stressed and red in the face rarely pays off – instead it is better to walk away, let the dust settle and approach things from a space of calmness. Stress attracts more stress, and we need to be pillars of tranquillity if we are to cope with the seemingly stormy seas ahead.

The discombobulation that Pluto creates, is hard to manage and even harder to understand, but there is reason for the confusion, and that reason is to push us (albeit a little harder than we might push ourselves) towards a place of inner freedom, inner peace and carrying far less baggage (of all kinds) than ever before...

As Pluto slowly starts to prepare to turn direct (on the 7th September) this tension will build and build. The only true way to handle this is to go with it – resistance is not only futile, but tiring as well. Not forgetting that change is inevitable…

The idea is that once Pluto moves direct, all this tension and focus will surge us ahead with our lives. And as we will all be that much more focused, determined and aware than before, we can work with this energy to create magic, wonder and joy in our lives…

Sunday, 9 August 2009

Don't Worry, Be Happy

Someone up there seems to have pressed the fast forward button. Life is moving so rapidly at the moment, there is a real risk of nausea from the spin.

I thought at first that it was just me – rushing around like a headless chicken, not being able to take even a brief moment to stop and breathe. But after speaking to countless others ‘on the path’, it seems to be a common theme.

The build up of energy from the retrograde planets seems to have reached a peak of intensity, and is causing a feeling of ‘melt down’ within many of us. Of course, this is purely to help us to let go of the inessential, so we can welcome in the new. But, at the time, the feeling of ‘going nuclear’ is pretty real and very much in focus.

The key lesson in the current season of fast-paced change and transformation seems to be connected to not taking ourselves quite so seriously. Laughter is a powerful tool, yet I struggle to remember the last time I truly laughed, and laughed and laughed until my belly hurt.

Laughter is a great release, and it helps us to gain a fresh perspective on life. When we laugh, we let go of blocks and obstacles within and feel lighter as a result.

The path of spirituality is – at times – a puzzling one. Once we step through the door of awareness, we can never go back. Once we switch that light on within, that allows us to explore the ever-expanding Universe, we cannot switch it off again. How can we ‘forget’ that expansiveness? Of course, this heightened sense of awareness often comes at a price – a need to take full responsibility for our actions and choices. Once we have stepped through that doorway; using ignorance as a plea doesn’t work.

Whilst we are all still learning, we cannot pretend that we do not know that every action has a consequence, that every thought has an effect not only on ourselves but on others as well. Sometimes there seems to be an enviable simple-ness to remaining a sheep and keeping way below the spiritual radar. Yet, whilst I sometimes fantasise about the joys of wearing rose-tinted spectacles again, I also realise that it is only by stepping through that doorway into the unknown, into a space of heightened awareness that I can grow and develop.

So, in order to cope with the ‘burden’ of awareness, laughter is key to help keep things in perspective.

So, just remember ‘Always look on the bright side of life…’

‘Some things in life are bad
They can really make you mad
Other things just make you swear and curse.
When you're chewing on life's gristle
Don't grumble, give a whistle
And this'll help things turn out for the best...
And...always look on the bright side of life...
Always look on the light side of life... ‘


Eric Idle, The Life of Brian – Monty Python

Wednesday, 5 August 2009

The Donkey In The Well

Have you heard the story about a man who had a donkey? The man didn't have much, but he had a donkey. One day, the donkey fell into an old abandoned well on the farm. The donkey, being a donkey, kicked and kicked. When that didn't seem to help, it brayed and brayed. It kicked up a fuss and made a terrible commotion, but no one came to help it.

The donkey was exhausted and resting wearily against the side of the well, when its owner first noticed it was missing. The owner became concerned as to the whereabouts of his donkey. He searched everywhere he could think of. He could not find his donkey. He went to the neighbours and enlisted their help in the search. They searched everywhere. No luck. The donkey appeared to be missing for good.

The neighbours gathered in the man's farmyard and tried to console him. It was then that one of the men looked down into the old, abandoned well and saw the missing donkey. The men spent the rest of the day and most of the night trying to get a rope around the donkey stuck at the bottom of the deep well. They were unable to accomplish such a feat. They felt defeated. The owner of the donkey felt terrible.

They assembled for a meeting. The wisest among them suggested that they fill the abandoned well in with dirt. It was true this would bury the unfortunate donkey, but it would prevent the same tragedy from befalling others-perhaps one of their children. It was agreed that this would be the plan they would follow.

The men took turns throwing a shovel full of dirt into the hole.

The owner felt terrible for the donkey. He felt terrible for himself and his loss. He didn't have much, but he always had a donkey. Now he wouldn't even have that.

Once the first shovel of dirt hit the donkey, the animal found renewed energy. It brayed even louder than he had before. The men turned their eyes from one another and pretended not to hear the donkey's pleadings. As more and more dirt fell into the hole, the donkey began to understand the hopelessness of its situation. It began to give up.

Then it happened. The donkey realized that the dirt was a gift. With each scoop of dirt that fell into the well, the donkey shook off any that landed on it and then took a step up onto the top of the pile of dirt forming at the bottom of the well. More dirt, another shake and another step up.

The men kept shovelling; certain that they were burying the poor donkey. After much shovelling, the men were quite surprised to see the donkey, looking right straight at them. It was standing on top of all that dirt that had been dropped on it.


Unknown Author

Sunday, 2 August 2009

July Horoscopes (archive)

August Horoscopes are on The Planet Whisperer website!

Aries


You have been in fast forward mode this past few weeks, and the pace of life continues to surge ahead full throttle as you enter July. You love high-energy times, yet at the same time you can become so focused on the ‘highs’ that you can take your eye off the ball. Try to stay focused this month and do try to be aware of the people around you – some of whom seem to support and nurture you, whilst others seem happy to feed off your energy reserves.

Whilst you may have lots of energy, if you let too much of it be taken by others, you could end up feeling a little flat and lethargic. So, keep a check on your energy reserves, and if you need to take a step back to recharge your batteries for a while, then do try to find the time for this. Some time away from it all, will also give you time to re-focus.

Try to play it cool when it comes to your path ahead, you may be bursting with ideas and enthusiasm, but you need to time your next step well in order to make the most of the opportunities coming your way. Remember to continue working on stabilising your foundations, so that when the time does come to fly, you will be ready and waiting.

Taurus

As a rule, Taureans love rhythm and routine, yet it seems at the moment, life has become a little too predictable even for you. Yes, you may be comfortable, but you know deep down, that things need to change in your life. The challenge for you though is to find the confidence and self-belief to make those changes. Whilst you have the strength and tenacity of the biggest bull in the field, you still lack the courage to follow your heart.

You tend to take everyone else’s needs and wants into account (which is very admirable), but this usually comes at the cost of sacrificing your own dreams. July brings with it a chance for you to find your inner strength and to begin re-asserting yourself in the world. This is not to say that you will throw your weight around like a bull in a china shop (but when the need warrants it…?!), but rather you will start to think about what’s right for you. This may come as a shock to some of those around you who, well let’s face it, have enjoyed you being submissive, but at the same time you will be surprised to see just how well your new-found strength will be received. You will soon realise that it is possible to fulfil your dreams AND care for others - they are not mutually exclusive. This is your time now, make the most of it.

Gemini

You have learnt a very valuable lesson recently. That lesson is connected to your Geminian need for variety and change. It seems that you have become a little too fearful of embracing new and exciting opportunities when they present themselves, the reason for this is not only a lack of self-confidence, but also a feeling of not ‘having what it takes’ to do the job. You have forgotten that your greatest strengths are your flexibility and adaptability. You are like a chameleon, and can adapt to whatever life throws at you. Yet, you have doubted this at some level?

July brings you a chance to embrace your chameleon, and to let your skills and gifts shine brightly once again. You are a greatly talented and gifted individual, with so much to offer. It’s time to ‘own’ this now, and to reach out and grab those amazing opportunities that are yours for the taking.

With Venus and Mars moving into your sign this month, you have the perfect opportunity to seek balance in your life on all levels. Harmony is key to enable you to tap into the strength of Mars and the grace of Venus. Expect to be silver tongued, confident and highly energised as the month progresses – the world is your oyster. Sounds like a fun time will be coming your way...

Cancer

July is a month likely to leave you spinning on the spot. This is partly because Mercury whizzes his way through your sign in just 15 days, and his influence will throw up all sorts of communicative issues for you – both externally and in connection to your inner dialogue. The other event that will have you spinning is the total solar eclipse in your sign on the 22nd of the month.

Unless you live in SE Asia or the Western Pacific you are unlikely to witness this event, but don’t be fooled into thinking ‘out of sight, out of mind’. No, this eclipse is likely to open up a hugely transformational phase of your life. During those few minutes of totality (particularly if you can meditate), you will gain a unique viewpoint of yourself and your life – your successes, ‘failures’, hopes, dreams and wishes will all flash into view.

Our ancestors saw eclipses as harbingers of doom (who put out the light?), of course we now understand more about these events, and eclipses are now seen as bringers of change. You are being given a fantastic opportunity this month to look at your life from a different perspective, to get your goals back into clear view and to re-connect to your courage, confidence and self-belief to make your dreams a reality.

Leo

You are naturally suited to being the leader of the pack, and you like nothing better than to be in control of your life, your destiny and your world. You are so good at leading that many people look to you for guidance and direction. This quality within you has enabled you to achieve many things in your life, and yet you are struggling a little at the moment, as despite all your hard work, you seem to be making little progress with your goals.

The reason for this is that you have so got used to being a ‘one wo/man band’ that you have failed to notice that you are surrounded by willing teammates who are currently sharing the same goals as you. So, try to welcome the idea of ‘we’ into your life this month, and you will see just how valuable it can be at times to become one of the gang, as opposed to the leader of the pack.

Taking a step back will also help you to cultivate some wonderful new friendships and one of these in particular is likely to bring some colourful magic and sparkle into your life. Just remember to be yourself, you don’t need to impress with over-exaggerated stories of greatness and grandeur – you are great just as you are, just let the warmth of your heart radiate and shine…

Virgo

There is something about Virgoans that make them stand out from the crowd, and that is the unending drive towards perfectionism! Of course other folk strive for perfection, but you seem to have a need for this in your life. Anything short of perfection just isn’t good enough. Now, we all want perfect lives, perfect relationships, perfect jobs, perfect health, but how many of us ever actually achieve this? Maybe there is no such thing as perfection, as the goal posts are always moving towards something bigger and better and more perfect than before?

July brings you an opportunity to get as near to perfect as is possible. The reason for this is that you will have a chance to take your foot off the accelerator that is your life, and you will slow down enough to see out of the window. You will then realise that all your hard work and efforts over recent months have actually paid off. Life is good, and you finally feel like all that pressure has been worth it.

It is not a time to rest on your laurels though, as an opportunity is likely to come knocking on your door later on in the month. Why change if life is so perfect you may ask? Well, try to see this as an enhancement to your life, not a change…

Libra

You may have been flicking through the pages of your life recently, looking back at past events and taking a peak at what’s to come, but you have failed to notice that the wheel of time has turned, and in the present you are about to begin a whole new, exciting and rewarding chapter of your life. Why ponder on the future and the past when it is the present that is the most important? You struggle to live in the moment, as you are such a philosopher and deep thinker, yet sometimes in life, you have to grab life with both hands and just get on the ride.

Thinking is great, but it can leave you paralysed in indecision, as no one path looks more or less appealing than the others. Sometimes, you have to go with your gut feeling, and trust your instincts. Sometimes you have to quieten down that whirring, whizzing, clanging mind of yours and trust. Sometimes you have to shut off the thoughts and opinions of others and go it alone.

This new chapter sees a new, brighter, more confident you emerging. Almost as though the butterfly is finally starting to emerge from the chrysalis. This change may upset the apple cart when it comes to those close. But this is your time now, and don’t you owe it to yourself to finally have true happiness and contentment in your life?

Scorpio

July is a month of great challenge for Scorpio. However, try not to assume that challenge means negative, as it doesn’t. Think for a minute about your life – you can take your time to find a purpose or project that really resonates with you, but once you have sunk your teeth into it, there really is no stopping you. So much so, that you often charge ahead with great intensity, vigour and energy. What’s wrong with that, you might ask? Well, nothing and everything. Sometimes you have to take a pause, a breath – it helps to keep things in perspective and it helps to keep you on the right path towards your goal.

The challenge for you this month is to do just that. To stop, pause and chill. Not too much to ask, but you will find it hard to resist not immersing yourself in all that drive, determination and frenetic energy. The challenge comes in trying not to panic that everything will fall apart if you take a step back, the challenge comes in trusting that sometimes you have to pause in order to gain clarity. The challenge also comes in trusting your intuition – listening to that inner guidance system that you have been ignoring a little lately.

If you can succeed in your challenge, you will end the month seeing your life and path ahead in a whole new light…

Sagittarius

The eclipses this month are likely to see great change for Sagittarians. Yet these changes will be quite subtle and undefined to begin with, and most unlikely to throw you off course. You are one of those individuals that thrives on change and new challenges anyway, so this is unlikely to worry you in any way. Yet at a deeper level, there is a sense that you are unsettled and uncertain about bringing change into your life.

It’s almost a feeling of ‘better the devil you know’ as life has been quite challenging for you lately; yet you need to take a step back for a moment just to see how much progress you have made! Stress has left you seeing negatives and challenges, yet your life is full of positives and possibilities. Change your focus and change your life. Simple as that!

Once you start seeing the wood for the trees, you will see just how many opportunities are yours for the taking. If you dare to embark on a new adventure or quest, then you will quickly realise that the key to success is in how you think – seeing positives not negatives. You are not usually one to dwell on negatives, so try to shake this trait during July, and your life will become a myriad of joy and positivity…

Capricorn

You are not best known for being ‘touchy, feely’ and wearing your heart on your sleeve. Some may even think you a little aloof and distant as you rarely show a great deal of vulnerability. Yet under the surface, many fail to notice the myriad of emotions running riot. You struggle to keep these in check at times, yet you are the epitome of the ‘stiff upper lip’ and fight like mad to hide how you feel. July brings you a safe and comfortable environment in which to open up a little and to express your feelings.

This may feel alien at first, and you may worry that you might lose control completely and make a fool of yourself. That is purely a matter of perception though, as few people close to you would judge you, rather they would embrace the chance to connect with the deeper you. The July eclipses are likely to bring some issues up to the surface that are a little sensitive and delicate, yet the time is now to confront these and to explore your deeper nature.

On a more outward level, life is on the up. You finally feel that you are more in control of your destiny, and you have the confidence and self-belief to follow your dreams. Tie this into an emotional re-awakening and you will end the month feeling like you are on top of the world.

Aquarius

As you know the winds of change have been gathering momentum in your life for some time
now; and there is an air of excitement and anticipation, as you get closer to achieving some of your dreams. Life is good, and everything seems to be moving in the right general direction with little effort on your part. You feel far more in control of your life than you have done for some time, and you feel that you are being ‘looked after’ as you glide through life.

In some ways though, the better life gets, the more suspicious you become as you seem to be finding it hard to relax and enjoy the ride through fear of it all suddenly being taken away from you. You can’t help but feel that it is all way too good to be true. This worry has been getting in the way of your enjoyment, and you need to realise that whilst there are never any certainties in life, your life is on the up, so why question it so much? Why, doubt that it won’t continue? A healthy dose of realism is never a bad thing, but don’t take it too extremes and risk undermining the very dreams that you have been working towards for so long. It is a choice only you can make, but this is your moment, your time to shine – make the most of it...

Pisces

You are naturally empathic and sensitive, and these traits have served you very well in life. Yet there are times, when you feel overwhelmed and out of your depth as you have become somewhat enveloped in other people’s ‘stuff’. This is one such time, and it can be hard for you to find clarity about our own life and path ahead as life feels quite confusing and ‘foggy’. You have become a victim of your own success, in the sense of your compassion and deep understanding of others - you have become so good at intuiting and helping others, that you have lost sight of yourself and your own needs.

July brings you an opportunity to take a step back and breathe. There will be an opportunity for you to untangle yourself from the complex web of other people’s emotional turmoil that you have become embroiled within, and as a result feel like a huge weight has been taken off of your shoulders. You will feel lighter, clearer and your own life and path ahead will once again come back into stronger focus so that you can spend some time on yourself for a change. Your challenge is not to feel selfish for having some much needed ‘you time’. In addition, practice the ‘No!’ word – it does get easier with time! You deserve a break, so relax…

Saturday, 1 August 2009

Planet Whispering...

Someone asked me recently what inspires my writing on here – do I simply interpret the movements of the planets or is there more to it? Well, I guess the answer to both, is yes!

I have trained in traditional astrology, and so I can (and do!) interpret charts, planetary movements and cycles, but on the whole I tend to work more intuitively with astrology these days. I trained in Experiential Astrology several years ago, and this approach made far more sense to me as it brought the energies of the planets to life. I see the planets and the signs as different forms of energy or archetypes and from this I work on a purely energetic level - the planets/signs or cosmic archetypes ‘talk’ to me - hence the term Planet Whisperer.

It is hard to put into words exactly how I work – but to give you an example with Uranus’s recently moving retrograde, I simply connect to Uranus and ask him how he feels about it! Sounds simple, but it takes practice! Some may call this channelling, that it may be, but this word is often over-used these days. I am not quite sure what it is, but the planets inspire me to write – so I guess that is the answer.

This slightly eclectic approach also enables me to use astrology quite innovatively for both healing and life guidance work.

Hope this goes some way to explaining how I work…

Sarah
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