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On Going “Home”

Posted by: | July 2, 2012 | No Comment |

At last month’s 81st A.R.E. Membership Congress, there was a big sign on the hill that said “welcome home” and another balloon archway in front of the stairs in the Visitor’s Center that echoed that same sentiment. Now you can find many definitions of the word “home.” It is a “shelter that is the usual residence of a person;” or it can be defined as “the place or region where something is native or most common.” Something inside each of us longs for a place we can call home, but what is home for us isn’t necessarily made of  bricks and mortar.

I grew up on the south side of Chicago in a neighborhood called Bridgeport. My parents, brother and I shared the house with my maternal grandparents, who owned the house. Bridgeport was, and is,  a very  ethnic, blue-collar neighborhood with brick bungalows on tiny 25-foot lots that backed up to a paved alley lined with reeking garbage cans. The houses were separated by  a “gangway” and the rooms were fairly small. I shared a bedroom off the living room with my brother until I was 16. All we could fit in it were two twin-size beds separated by a three-drawer dresser, all made by my father. No closet. No door. When I looked out my window, all I saw was the brick wall of the house next door, which later was owned by my aunt and uncle.

For some reason, whenever I looked out the window down to the basement of my aunt and uncle’s home, I believed that I would see them differently–that the body they were occupying when they knew they were being seen was  not the same body they had when they thought no one was around. It was a strange idea for a child to have, but I was convinced their physical appearance wasn’t real. Could I have been seeing the essence of their soul instead of their physical selves? I never did figure that one out.

As a young girl, my thoughts were always focused on that house on Lowe Avenue, wondering how in the world did I get there? I distinctly remember thinking–where am I? Why am I here? Where are my gardens and rolling hills? And who are these people?Born and raised in Chicago, I felt alienated from that place and from the family I came into. I didn’t know why, but that sense of isolation was always there; that subliminal feeing that this was not where I belonged and these people were not my true family. Of course, years later when I understood the concept of reincarnation, I knew I had chosen to be in that place  and to come through that biological family, but growing up in a very Catholic, Italian-American family, those concepts were foreign to me as a child.

After high school I went to the University of Illinois, Chicago Circle Campus, because it was close to home (it was a commuter school then–no dorms) and because my parents had little money and did not own the house we were living in and I was given a full grant to attend school (which at that time was something ridiculously inexpensive, like $300 a quarter!). So while I had no particular aspirations in terms of a study track, I thought–well, why not? No one else in my family had gone to college. I’d be the first.

I majored in early American history–a time period I resonated to–and did well. One professor in particular commented that I had the most uncanny feel for 18th century American history of any student he ever had. Based on that comment and an inner knowing that he was right even though I didn’t understand why, I decided to visit all of the places on the eastern seaboard  for which I had this “uncanny” feel to see what would happen when I was actually there.

That’s all it took. Once I landed in Virginia, my soul took a collective sigh of relief. I was home! I didn’t understand why I suddenly felt this peacefulness of spirit overcome me or why that longed-for yearning to find where I belonged had instantly disappeared, but it did and it was a feeling I cannot find words to describe. Of course, I returned to Chicago, got married, had a family and for all intents and purposes “fell asleep” for the next 15 years. Then like thousands of others, I got my metaphysical wake-up call in 1987 with the airing of Shirley MacLaine’s “Out on a Limb” mini-series. That started me on the path of studying reincarnation, starting a past life research, education and therapy center, and digging into my own past life journey. And all of that ultimately led me back to Virginia and a move to Charlottesville in 1995.

So now I was in the right physical home, but what about my spiritual home? Was there such a place on Earth? Could I find ” my” people and truly feel a part of my soul family? That search became an obsession as I navigated the waters of many spiritual outlets, trying to find the one that fit. The irony  of it all was that I had it all the time. A.R.E. and later A.U. was my spiritual home and the loving souls who were as attracted to Edgar Cayce and his teachings as I was, were indeed members of my soul family.

So it was when I attended Congress this year, I did so feeling that I had indeed, come “home.” The joyousness of the members attending Congress was contagious. I felt accepted, loved, and at peace. I was where I belonged and all of the time and work I voluntarily give to A.R.E. and A.U. in my various functions as A.R.E. Charlottesville Coordinator, and A.U. Alumni Association President, as well as Congress Workshop Coordinator, made me feel all the more a part of a much greater destiny. Sharing Cayce’s teachings has been both personally and professionally fulfilling to me and the sense of mission does not diminish with the passing of time. Instead it grows more urgent as the years go by.

The “Welcome Home” sign during A.R.E. Congress says so much more than the two words it displays. Those of you who have experienced it know what I’m talking about. Those of you who haven’t, what are you waiting for? The door to your spiritual home is always open and the welcome mat is always out!

 

under: A.R.E.

Someone once told me that if you really want your karmic buttons pressed, get involved with a spiritual organization. After all, where else would you encounter souls who agreed to “assist” you in working through karmic issues than in an organization dedicated to those principles?

When I started A.R.E. Charlottesville in January 2009, I did so around an Ideal. I wanted to provide a place where like-minded souls could come together to hear speakers share their wisdom about Edgar Cayce’s teachings; to make new friends; to be in a place where they could express their truth amid others who offered a compassionate, nonjudgmental ear. That famous quote from Field of Dreams certainly came true–If you build it, they will come. And come they did.

I was fortunate to have a group of very loving, kind, supportive souls who offered their help unconditionally because they shared my vision for the service we could provide. Together, we developed an extraordinary team and our combined energies created a welcoming aura  that attracted equally loving and kind souls. This selfless group of individuals had no agenda other than to be of service. I cannot tell you how empowering that felt.

As is the case with any growing organization, eventually other individuals came into the group whose energy did not quite mesh with that of the original group. This created a challenge, not only for the group as a whole, but in particular for me as the Coordinator. Our harmonious group suddenly became disharmonious. Intuitively, many of us sensed a shift had occurred,  but as we all wanted to “walk the talk” we reserved judgment and tried to continue, ignoring the red flags that were frantically being waved.

In meditating on how to handle what was becoming a growing crisis, I thought about the Search for God material and how “Cooperation” was designated as the first lesson. I went back and reread that chapter. Right in the first paragraph, I had my answer:
Whether in the spiritual or physical, action is necessary to put cooperation into operation–thus those who would come together for a common cause must have united action in the pursuit and realization of a common end.”   I realized that with the make up of the new group, we had lost the “united action in the pursuit and realization of a common end” that had been such a hallmark of the original group of volunteers. But how could I get that back? The answer was in the same sentence: “action is necessary to put cooperation into operation.” As Coordinator for the group, that responsibility fell on my shoulders. As uncomfortable as I was with confrontation, I knew this was one of my lessons. How could I be firm, but loving? How could I restore unity, harmony and order to the group without alienating anyone?

I read further–“When self is lost in the Ideal, cooperation is the natural result. It is the natural consequences of self-service, self-sacrifice, self-bewilderment in Him. In whatever state we find society, let us meet it upon its own level; as we look up, we lift it. That is cooperation.”

Those words were so comforting and soothing that I felt a shift in my body, mind and spirit. I had been responding emotionally to the situation (well, I do have Sicilian blood!) and was succumbing to the resulting stress. I read: “We must put cooperation into action in our thinking. Our adverse thoughts have such a paralyzing effect that they will not only retard our own development, but also will build barriers for those who might seek to aid us.” Well, that was the last thing I wanted to do.  So I did as was suggested–to “replace our negative thoughts with positive ones, thinking not unkindly of anyone but speaking and thinking kindly of all.”  In embracing these powerful words, I felt a release and sense of peace. I surrendered the problem to a higher power and was prepared to accept whatever the end result would be. Instead of nervously trying to find a solution that may not have been for all of our highest and best, I followed the advice of being “patient and untiring in seeking this cooperation.”

As I write this, we have not resolved the problem, but those kind and loving souls from the original group have come together, determined to find a way to get back to who we were when we started this wonderful group. Perhaps this was just a bump in the road, some growing pains as we re-examined our Ideal and checked-in to see if our intentions and our actions were living up to that original intent or if somehow we had wandered off the path. But this I know for sure. No matter what the outcome, we are stronger for having gone through this and for realizing (duh!) that Mr. Cayce had the answer the whole time: “Not my will but Thine, O Lord, be done in me and through me. Let me ever be a channel of blessings, today, now, to those that I contact in very way. Let my going in, my coming out be in accord with that Thou would have me do, and as the call comes, “Here am I, send me, use me.” (262-3).

under: A.R.E. Charlottesville

On Saturday I hosted a small gathering of participants for a workshop on Soul Writing. It was the first time I attempted to do a full day workshop, but I decided to condense the 4-week eGroup session into a one day workshop to see if it worked. It did! Although I only had five participants, they were all very open and eager to learn the process of inspirational writing as taught by Edgar Cayce. There was one participant in particular who had a difficult time getting started, only getting ovals during her first try. This is very common for newcomers to the process and although she was discouraged, I assured her that if she stuck with it, she’d get an actual message the next time. That is exactly what happened on her second try and thereafter she began receiving long missives–one of which touched her so deeply that it brought her to tears.

No matter how many times I share this method of divine writing with participants, it never ceases to amaze me at how deeply the writing impacts the writer. We go through the whole doubting process–”Who is doing the writing? It can’t be ME!” We go through the problems that arise when the participant doesn’t let go or wants to manipulate or control the writing. We go through the–”This isn’t working. Maybe I’m not supposed to be doing this kind of writing.” When we get beyond all of that, then something truly magical happens. The pen flows across the paper effortlessly as each person learns how to connect to a higher level of consciousness and receive answers to any question they pose.

By the time the day ended, those who were in attendance left transformed, profoundly grateful for having had the experience and wanting to share it with as many souls as possible.  The same is happening right now in the eGroup I am facilitating on Inspirational Writing. Each person in that group is connecting on a very deep level with others in the course and it’s all done online. You can feel the love connection, the sincerity of each person as they reach out to their fellow course mates, and the truly wondrous way each person’s message has something to say to the group as a whole. I tell people one of the things they can expect to happen when they begin this process is that their lives will never be the same again. It is so true. Everyone is transformed in some way.

I have been doing this form of sacred writing for over 25 years and I never get tired of the process. I continue to be astonished at how this form of attuning to the divine continues to evolve, opening into endless possibilities and opportunities for soul’s growth. It is a very powerful, humbling tool of transformation. As Cayce said, it is our birthright to communicate with Source. I call Soul Writing my “Phone Home Card” which I can use to give Spirit a call, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Someone is always at the other end of the line!

 

under: Soul Writing

Welcome!

Posted by: | April 27, 2012 | 2 Comments |

Welcome to my first blog! I am thrilled to be joining the ranks of the other A.U. bloggers and look forward to using this format to share ideas, explore philosophies, and make new friends.

First, a big thank you to Bobbie Pimm for spending several hours helping me set this up. I’m kind of an old-fashioned gal who still likes to hand write letters, so you can imagine how intimidating this was for me! Bobbie had infinite patience and I’m really grateful to have friends like her who are technologically savvy!

When we were getting ready to list categories, I had to really stop and think about all the different hats I wear. Over the last few months, I’ve been putting a lot of thought into the concept of what it means to be hemmed into a  “title box” which is something I think we can all relate to. A title box is a figurative way of saying that each of us, at some point in our lives, becomes identified with one particular attribute. We get put in an invisible box with the name of that attribute stamped on it–like dancer, singer, accountant, lawyer, counselor, doctor, etc. Sometimes that’s a good thing, in that people who are drawn to our particular talents can easily find us. But sometimes it’s not such a good thing when we feel trapped in a particular box with a title we feel either is limiting or inaccurate.

This happens often in the corporate world. Each position within a company has a specific job description, whether written or in the mind of the employer. Once you accept that position, you become that position. You may have once been vice president of a corporation, but if you accept a job as a data entry clerk, the words “data entry clerk” are clearly stamped all over you. You get put into The Title Box—a place that is often virtually impossible to climb out of.

In thinking about my own evolution, I found myself surrounded by a number of title boxes. For instance, I am the Coordinator of the A.R.E. chapter in Charlottesville and president of the Atlantic University Alumni Association. Both of those titles imply I am a highly organized individual; someone who gets things done. I accept that description proudly, but that’s not the sum total of who I am. There is also the writer, the teacher, and the past life therapist–all vying for the same attention from me and the recognition of that aspect of myself from others. Whenever I have taken A.R.E. related courses and the question comes up about one’s soul purpose, I always have defined mine as – “Reporter for the Universe.” As someone who has studied reincarnation for over 30 years and has guided countless regressions for others as well as undergoing them myself,  I am mindful of patterns in one’s soul journey. For me, it has been one of writer and teacher. My sense is that I am assigned to come to this plane of existence, observe what is going on around me, and then report about it so others can be aware and learn from it. No doubt in acquiring that skill I also learned how to   be very well organized and adhere to deadlines. So today, some people see me as the organizer, while others see me as the writer and teacher. I strive to be seen as both, with a little bit of a lean toward the writer/teacher aspect,  as that fulfills my earthly job description.We are, after all, the sum total of all our incarnations. The abilities, talents and skills we acquired in previous lives are in our karmic bank account for us to pull on at any time–and certainly there are a lot of boxes in our karmic bank!

So when I think about this blog, I have to smile, because this opens the door to my continuing with my duties as “reporter for the Universe.” I hope you will enjoy my “column” and offer your unique perspectives on whatever topic we explore in the months ahead.

under: Uncategorized

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