What remains

Once upon a time, without any warning, I never went back home from summer vacation, and was placed at the very last minute as an international student at an American boarding school. It was a rough first year, but sometime along the way I lost my accented English, found a Read more…

Other as Mirror of Self

The tools I share are really effective in helping you shift your energy in one way or the other. Some are really handy (many of my meditation tools can be used while you’re out walking to the train or are actually riding the subway), while others require more quiet and reflection. Other as Mirror of Self falls into the latter category. It is worth the work, however, because in my opinion (and from experience bringing it repeatedly into Dreamers & Schemers), this is one of the most incisive ways to identify your growth edge (which is another way to say “your issues”), and work through your issues from an angle that goes beyond the usual fodder of talk therapy.

In other words, this is not just about identifying your wounded inner child and blaming it on some external cause, but taking for your ALL emotional reactions. This might sound hard or yucky because it’s a lot easier to blame other people for how you’re feeling, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll find this to be a tremendously useful and empowering life skill!

To be perfectly honest, learning this process was no cake walk, and I experienced a lot of tough love from my Akashic Records learning to do this. I spent months in resistance, clinging to my anger and self-righteousness, until one day something shifted in me and I experienced the transformative power of this habit of mind. This is a habit, so it gets stronger with practice. When it becomes second nature, you will ask yourself why you spent so much time suffering over something you actually had control over: your own emotional reactions.

If you’re feeling resistance now, take a moment to soften and open yourself to something new. Yes, we’ve all heard some variation of the old chestnut that you can’t control others, you can only control your reaction to them. Sure, you’re thinking, easier said than done. But let me break down the process into manageable steps so you can see that this is actually easier than you think.  (more…)

Shields and boundaries

I consider shielding a vital, basic energy management skill along with centering and grounding. In April we did an overview of basic practices to protect us from being unduly influenced from outside energy.


First we experienced what the energy of walls were like. We all know people who are “guarded” or “walled off,” and perhaps we are, too, in certain contexts or in the company of certain individuals. I once knew someone who had walls that felt like a stone fortress, but behind that barrier I also senses a tender, beating heart. Of course, it makes sense. We only protect that which we are afraid will get hurt.

So to begin our exploration into shielding and boundaries we can practice consciously throwing up a wall or a shield. Go with whatever feels instinctive to you. Everyone has done this at once point or another, so don’t worry about how to do it or if you’ll get it wrong, because you can’t. If it helps, imagine that you are walking down a quiet street and you suddenly see someone walking toward you. This person is someone you would rather not interact with. How do you prepare for the encounter?

What does your wall / shield feel like? What is it made of? How big is it? What does it feel like to walk around with this kind of protection? How do other people react to you when you have your defenses up?

Some shields are heavy, some are icy (or simply cool), some are prickly. Anger is an entirely different kind of shield. Have you ever seen someone radiate such hot anger that people literally back away from him? It can be really interesting and fun to sense and observe the different ways we protect ourselves and how it affects those around us.

When I first did this exercise I found that I threw up a brick wall that was rather difficult to walk around with. Even though it didn’t look that big, it was cumbersome and heavy. When I shared this with my meditation teacher, he warned me that people can sense our defenses, and walls sometimes incite the desire to breach them. Not shortly after that conversation, something happened that convinced me to drop my practice of walling myself off. I was in a restaurant and raised a wall during a meal, and the person I was trying to keep at an energetic distance physically stood up, walked around the table to where I was seated, and got in my face!

It was time to use other tools for shielding, and I am glad to share some of those below with you.