Monthly Archives: July 2014

Interview with Jeremy Anacker

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Written by Mimosa
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A talk about reiki, auras and spiritual development with longtime Mimosa event presenter Jeremy Anacker.

Mimosa: When did you first realize you could see auras?

Jeremy: When I was seventeen I was invited to a spiritually oriented group and I sat in back with a friend. As the presenter told his story and was expressing how he applied various transformation principals, a white light started rolling over the crowd and then hit me at the back of the room. I might have been more dismissive of the phenomena if it was not obvious to me that I felt lifted by it as it hit me. I looked over to my friend who was oblivious to what was going on. This began the uncovering of my denial that I was seeing things around me all of the time. It set me up to get very committed to bringing healing energy to the various environments that I found myself in. Especially where there were lower energies.

Mimosa: Do you  believe any of us have the ability to practice Reiki or see auras?

Jeremy: Reiki is a very simple technique and only certain people feel called to practice the modality. If a person is interested in being a healer and they begin the practice it always works. It has become important for me to state and restate a very important point at the Reiki Sharing and in any group that I lead: “The most spiritually advanced person is the one that trusts the life force and the universe completely.” I have known some very un-evolved Aura seers so I know that this ability does not by itself make one the more advanced person in the room. For me witnessing the energy has helped me be aware that the universe is being animated and orchestrated by the every-where-present source energy. With that said, I believe that with work just about anybody can get a glimpse of the energies that dance around the human form. This can be very helpful in that one has direct experiential evidence that there is more to us than the physicality of our body. Very often the students that I interact with are already experiencing the energy around them through their own sensing or knowing. Showing up to a group can be validating for them and it is a chance to be amongst others who know that they are not crazy.

Mimosa: How does the Reiki Share work?

Jeremy: It can serve as an introduction to this very simple touch healing modality as basic information is given to new participants and they are encouraged to receive a treatment. Many new participants are very thrilled and surprised with the effortless results as they might feel as though they melted into the table or that they have expanded into the room. Other participants find that they need to try two or three separate sessions in order for their energy to prime up their energy for the process. At Mimosa during our Sunday night gathering we have from anywhere between 1 and 4 tables up and running at any given time. There are many Reiki Shares where there is a strict rule that only attuned Reiki practitioners do the healing work. At our Reiki Share new participants usually come right in and do healings right away. To me it is very inspiring to find people willing to give the process a try right away. They are also always encouraged to get a Reiki Attunement if they feel called to continue growing in the healing process.

Mimosa: Can you tell us a little about your channeling work?

Jeremy: Channeling itself has become relatively popular. Many people know about the bestselling book, “Ask And It Is Given” by Abraham Hicks. There is also the work of Edgar Cayce, Kryon, Seth, Ramtha and more where the channeler goes into a trance state and allows for a higher expression to give spiritual messages and guidance. In recent years guidance on how to achieve abundance in one’s life has become very popular. There are also many that are very helpful with everyday problems such as difficult decisions with relationships or career paths. I have been working with an energy who gives a very broad and big picture style of wisdom while also working to energetically lift the participants. It calls itself Rhammah. We have a very dedicated group of core participants that are attracted to my channeling work and there are many who come and go. No one is ever pressured to believe any dogmas or made to feel bad if the work is not for them.

Mimosa: If someone is interested in learning Reiki, how should they get started?

Jeremy: Years ago, I started out by signing up for a personal treatment while not even knowing what it was about. There is also the Basic Reiki Concepts class that I lead once a month on the fourth Sunday. I give a basic intro alongside some basic lessons that will help interested people to find a way to relate to the world of healing work and how the practice of Reiki can help them on their journey. Many who attend this event stay for the Reiki Sharing that follows.

Mimosa: What’s your definition of spiritual progress?

Jeremy: I think that just about everybody spends a great deal of time progressing by gathering information and trying out techniques. On the information level one can learn about the various paths and frameworks that people have benefitted from. In my classes I always hope to show participants how to remove the barriers to the truth. This emphasis is very different than learning about the truth as one is encouraged to discover it for themselves. In order to do this a great deal of unlearning needs to occur. I would say that ultimately we unlearn the many layers of control that our egos are hooked into and we learn to trust the ultimate supreme source of life. At some point one can discover themselves as completely non-separate from this source.

Mimosa: Can you name one person, living or dead, who has had a great influence on you?

Jeremy: Dr. Wayne Dyer has been such a great bridge builder as he has managed to speak in very simple terms to everyday people about very big ideas from various traditions in a way that is incredibly practical and transformative. In my Reiki classes I often use his quote, “No amount of feeling bad for someone is going to make them better.” I also run into a lot of people on our community who have gone over his material whether it be his books, his CDs or his PBS television specials. He has prepared many people for the next step which in my view is to join up and get active in a transformation community of like minds.


Shadow Animals: Mysteries in the Dark

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by Cathy Douglas

My interest in shadow animals comes from personal experience.  I’m often outside after dark, and see a lot of opossums, bats, raccoons, and other animals that like to hang out in Madison at night.  But occasionally, I’ll catch a glimpse of something harder to identify–something halfway in size between a cat and a raccoon, but not exactly shaped like either.  These creatures run off so quickly it’s hard to get a good look at them.  Usually, the next day I’ll try to convince myself I’d seen something ordinary–maybe a baby raccoon, even though it hadn’t really looked or moved like one.  But since whatever I’d seen was dark enough to blend in with the night-time shadows, it was hard to know what else to think.

I noticed one of these creatures very early one winter morning, on the bar of land that goes out into the Lake Mendota by the Tenney Locks.  Against the white of ice and snow, its shape was a little easier to make out, even in the dark.  It was catlike, but bigger and more hunched over like raccoon, 100% black.  It ran away, out onto the mostly frozen lake–something I’ve never seen a cat or a raccoon do.  This animal was much too large to be a muskrat and didn’t have a beaver’s tail; besides, it didn’t jump off the ice ledge into open water as a muskrat or beaver would.  It just ran off across the ice towards the other shore.

This was all very strange, but I didn’t know much more about it than that until I recently decided to check the internet to see if others had similar experiences.  I was kind of surprised to see how much I found.  These creatures I saw are called shadow animals, shadow spirits or black animals.  (“Shadow animals” may also refer to the shadow pictures you make with your hands while you brother is holding a flashlight.  Not the same thing at all!)  Some think they’re related to a well-known paranormal phenomenon called “shadow people,” human-like shadows.  Shadow people sound awfully sinister, so I’m just as glad I’ve only encountered the animal kind.

One paranormal investigator saw a shadow animal while closing a vortex in a troubled house.  Here’s how she describes it:

Suddenly, I saw this bobcat-sized creature bolting toward me.  It had a curved back held in the posture of a raccoon. I saw that it had a rounded head, though I could not see the face.  I only saw the top of the head, neck, back, and part of the sides of the thing.  I knew that it had a cat-like tail, and that it was black with black spots (how I knew this, I cannot say).

–Brandy Stark, from Shadow Animals website.

This sounds exactly like what I saw, except that I didn’t notice any spots.  (I don’t know how anyone could make out black-on-black spots either.)  When she encountered this animal, there were several other people present and a video camera running, but strangely she was the only one who saw it.

Since then, she’s collected first-hand stories from many others.  What’s remarkable about these stories is how much the reports have in common.  The black animals people describe are almost always cat-like, fast-moving, and quick to flee when they notice they’re being watched.  They aren’t scary, but rather leave the viewer with a feeling of perplexity.

I’m not really sure what to make of all this, except to realize once again that there are still many things in the world we do not understand.

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Lapis Lazuli Overview

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by Ashley Leavy

Lapis Lazuli is a rock composed of Lazurite with Calcite and traces of Pyrite. The combination of these three minerals makes for a very unique energetic vibration. Lapis can be used quite effectively at the 5th Chakra (Throat Chakra) or at the 6th Chakra (Third Eye/Brow Chakra) by simply placing the stone on either Chakra for approximately ten minutes, allowing the stone’s energy to be absorbed into the Chakra center.

Lapis is commonly used by modern healing practitioners for facilitating spiritual enlightenment, to aid in dreaming practices, for encouraging psychic power and intuition, to stimulate spiritual and shamanic journeying and astral travel, to remove stress, to bring peace and calming, for protection, to communicate with spirit guides such as totem animals and guardian angels, to connect a person with his or her ancestors or for connection with ancient cultures, to banish negative energy, to aid in speaking one’s truth, to bring balance to mind, body, and spirit, to dispel depression, to encourage virtuous behavior, to stimulate compassion, to increase creativity, to remove headache pain, to regulate and balance the thyroid gland, to relieve insomnia, and to boost the immune system.

Its name is derived from the words for “Stone of Heaven” or for “Sky Stone.” It is easy to see the resemblance to the star-filled sky with its deep indigo body flecked with shining gold. Lapis lazuli stones were revered by the ancient Egyptians and Sumerians for their deep indigo color. In fact, the stone’s color revolutionized the art world. It was ground into a fine powder and processed to create the pigment ultramarine, which could be mixed into various types of paints. This same powder was used as a cosmetic eyeshadow in ancient Egypt (by women, including Cleopatra).

There is also a lower grade variety of Lapis (with a higher Calcite content) that is often referred to as Denim Lapis. This stone can also be used effectively at the 5th Chakra (Throat Chakra) or at the 6th Chakra (Third Eye/Brow Chakra) in the same manner as was described above.

Modern crystal healing therapists often use this stone:

  • to allow for clear and open communication with beings from the angelic realm
  • to help a person to find his or her own unique voice
  • to enhance clairvoyance
  • to encourage psychic insight and intuition
  • to aid in difficult decision-making
  • to aid a person in learning from his or her spiritual experiences

Although the Denim variety of Lapis is seen as being of lower quality from an economic point of view, it is nonetheless a very effective healing stone.

One star to rule them all: The meaning behind pentagrams and pentacles

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by Cathy Douglas

We don’t often see product recalls at a metaphysical shop, but recently we had to pull some mini candle holders from the shelf — not because they were broken, but because the pentacle symbol on them was printed upside-down. It wasn’t a case of physical safety, but one of taking symbols seriously.

Pentagrams and pentacles are two different things. A basic pentagram is a five-pointed star, whereas the word “pentacle” can refer to a number of things. It used to simply mean a plate bearing a magical symbol, and was part of the occult tradition of the Renaissance. In our day it’s come to mean one special symbol: a pentagram enclosed within a circle of protection and synthesis.

Both the pentagram and pentacle are positive symbols in which the top point of the star, representing Spirit, rules the other elements (earth, water, air and fire). In combining the four physical elements with Spirit, this sigil implies a connection between the material world and the spirit world — our wills connected with the four elements. This synthesis goes both ways: the human spirit has the potency to affect the material world, while at the same time humanity is part of the natural world and of Gaia. In this way, the pentacle symbolizes both magic and protection.

So, what’s so bad about turning the five-pointed star upside-down? Metaphysically, this would represent allowing the natural elements to “bury” Spirit, or worse, could imply using magic while disregarding the greater good. A pentagram turned point-downward has also been used as a sigil of the goat-like demon Baphomet. Most of us would just as soon stay away from such symbolism, or at most relegate it to t-shirts advertising heavy metal bands.

Though pentacles and pentagrams symbolize good things, that doesn’t mean they’re without controversy. As recently as 2007, the U.S. Veteran’s Administration refused soldiers and their families the right to select a pentacle as one of the official symbols that could be displayed on a tombstone at Arlington Cemetery and other U.S. military burial ground. Overturning this prohibition was a big win for religious freedom.

Pentacles are also one of the suits of the tarot. Originally this was the suite of coins; recasting it as “pentacles” was an innovation of the Rider-Waite-Smith tarot deck. Arthur Waite and Pamela Colman Smith came across the pentacle as Golden Dawn initiates. In the Golden Dawn, the four elemental weapons of the adept correspond to what have become the four tarot suits: the wand of fire, the cup of water, the sword of air, and the pentacle of earth. These in turn may have evolved from the four weapons of the Tuatha dé Danann, reportedly of druidic origin: the spear of Lugh, the cauldron of Dagda, sword of Nuada, and stone of Fál.

In modern Wicca (and similar neopagan traditions), the pentacle is an important symbol, representing both earth and the synthesis of elements. Patterns of five are rare in inanimate nature, but common in living things: the five senses, five fingers, five flower petals, etc. A natural pentagram form is visible in an apple, which when sliced through the center reveals its seeds in a perfect, five-pointed form. The seed itself is, of course, symbolic of mystery and rebirth.

As a religious symbol, the five-pointed star dates back to followers of Kore, an earth goddess worshipped from Europe through northern Africa since ancient times. (The word “kore” is ancient Greek for “young woman or maiden,” which was how they addressed Persephone.)  Later Roman followers, who worshipped the goddess Ceres, called this shape the Star of Knowledge. Christians adopted the Korein, her feast day, as the feast of Epiphany, and borrowed the five-pointed star to represent the Star of Bethlehem and the five wounds of Christ.

A pentacle, often in the form of a plate, is also one of the basic tools of a Wiccan altar. The current form is shaped a lot like those of the Renaissance, but now usually features a pentagram as its central symbol. People also personalize it with astrological symbols, runes, or really any symbol that has personal meaning.

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Home Protection Crystal Grid

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by Ashley Leavy

I am often asked about using crystal grids for protection of the home and family. A crystal grid is a geometric arrangement of healing stones used with intention to manifest a desired result. Using crystal grids is very powerful as it combines the energy of the stone with Sacred Geometry (the language of the Universe). In this way, the crystal energy is enhanced exponentially because your intention is being amplified through the stones and then sent out to the Universe in a clear and direct way through the sacred geometric formations.

I’ve developed a crystal grid recipe that can be used effectively in any dwelling. For extensive protection of your home, you can place Black Tourmaline in each of the corners of your home (as well as on either side of any exterior doors and windows). You can then place Selenite along each of the walls (energetically connecting the Tourmaline stones), between the corners and any exterior doorways or windows. The Tourmaline acts to set an energetic protective boundary, while the Selenite aids in cleansing and purification.

home protection grid

This is a heavy-duty protective grid (and most people won’t need to use nearly this many stones). This is an ideal grid if you had an unlimited budget, but most people will find that a piece of Tourmaline in each corner of the home with a piece of Selenite along each exterior wall (optional) would still work very well for their needs. For example, in the diagram of the home below, the ideal grid uses 20 pieces of Tourmaline and 13 pieces of Selenite. However, by placing the Tourmalines in just the corners of the home, this can be reduced to only 6 pieces. Additionally, by placing just one piece of Selenite per exterior wall (optional), the number of pieces of Selenite used is reduced to only 5 pieces. The resulting grid would still be very effective for most situations, but would only be a fraction of the cost (making energetic home protection a bit easier on your pocketbook).

Before placing the stones, they should be cleansed thoroughly. As you place each crystal in the grid, hold an intention of your choosing clearly in your mind (i.e. “This crystal creates a protective energetic boundary.” OR “This crystal protects me and my family.”). After placing the stones, it is recommend that you “activate” the grid by energetically linking the crystals together. This can be done with a Crystal Laser Wand (a single-terminated clear Quartz point) or with your finger. Point the crystal or your finger toward the first crystal in the grid (some people like to begin with the crystal in the northernmost position) and move around the home “drawing” energetic connections between each stone. In this way, you connect the crystal energetically so that they are better able to act as one harmonious grid, rather than many individual stones. After the grid has been activated, remember to cleanse the stones fairly often.

Black Tourmaline and Selenite have additional properties that may add to the qualities of the grid (if you intend them to do so).

SELENITE, COLORLESS: (Also known as Colorless Gypsum) Use at the 7th Chakra (Crown Chakra) for purification, to cleanse the chakras and the aura, to promote a connection with one’s divine self, to aid in the ascension process, to clear the mind before meditation, to enhance one’s ability to follow his or her spiritual virtues, to bring the light into one’s being, and to promote peace and harmony.

TOURMALINE, BLACK: (Also known as Schorl or as Aphrizite) Use at the 1st Chakra (Root Chakra/Base Chakra) for protection against electromagnetic pollution and negative energy, grounding, increased physical energy, to banish negative thoughts, to enhance positive thinking and creativity, to reduce geopathic stress, to strengthen the immune system, for cleansing the physical and ethereal bodies, and to aid in decreasing arthritis pain.

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Ancestor Altars & Honoring Our Mighty Dead

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by Mari Powers

In many parts of the world, including the United States, people still actively honor their ancestors.  Some would call the practice “ancestor worship,” yet this is not how I understand or maintain the practice.  Worship implies a feeling that the recipient of your actions is more worthy of praise and love offerings than yourself, your family, or any other being like you.  For me, honoring my ancestors, both blood-related and chosen, fosters a deep connection and acknowledgment of appreciation and remembrance.  This is a two- way relationship.

Some people honor their relations on the anniversary of their death.  In the Northern hemisphere, many connect with them at the final harvest, called Samhain (pronounced “sowen,” and translated as “summer’s end”).  This is a time of communal or solitary connection at the end of October.  For many it falls on October 31st–All Hallows Eve, also known as Halloween or the “Day of the Dead.”  All Soul’s Day follows on the Christian calendar, while older calendars governed by the changing seasons mark November 1 as New Year’s Day.  Some people celebrate the lives of those loved ones who have cast off their mortal bodies on both the anniversary of their death and on Samhain, while some acknowledge and connect with “The Mighty Dead” throughout the year in rituals small and large.

Different spiritual paths set aside other days to grieve, remember and connect; it is a nearly global spiritual service which has been practiced for hundreds of thousands of years.  Why do we do this?  The answers lie deep in our psyches, hidden in plain view.  Life and death are as intertwined as day and night and the turning of the seasons.  We are all temporarily living, and will one day become ancestors.  Death does not stop love, and we acknowledge that we stand upon the shoulders of those who have come before.

More personal reasons include the need to grieve, let go and move on with our lives.  We remember and share stories to pass on to our children.  We show appreciation of what we learned, and show we still love those who give us so much.  We set aside time from our everyday busy lives to grieve our loss and celebrate the ones who have enriched our lives, known and unknown.

As we descend into the dark time of the year, and nature’s quiet time begins, plants die or go dormant after the final harvest.  This is the time to take a day and a night to honor the endings that make way for new beginnings.

I believe that our dead are not truly gone; they live on in a new form and continue to have a pact with the living.  As we honor and celebrate their lives, we feed ourselves with rich memory and directly connect with the spirit world.  An ancestor altar facilitates this.  And so we light candles to attract our beloved dead to join us.  We tell their stories, mourn the loss of everyday worldly connection, and celebrate their lives as we celebrate and give thanks for our own.

Altars may be small and simple–a picture or two, a piece of jewelry or a tool, a candle, and food and drink to feed their spirits.  Other altars may be large and weighed down with flowers, full plates, coffee or wine, garden produce, pictures, drawings, written prayers or praise songs and items representing what the ancestor loved in life.  Ancestors are fed first, with the best food and drink.  We honor them for helping us to be who we were, are and will be.  We pray that that they are happy and ask that they watch over us and our descendants.  We remember their sacrifices and celebrate their lives.  We ask for their love, guidance and support in the coming year.  It is a living relationship that is reciprocal in nature.

In some cultures people only honor their blood relations; they may call out the names of all who are remembered, even those they never met when living.  In my tradition, I honor all of my relations, known and unknown, and remember by name chosen family, friends, teachers or mentors, as well as blood relations.  Even blood relatives I did not particularly like in life are honored, as they contributed to who I was, am and will be in some way.

I also honor and connect with those who have gone before me throughout the year, as spirit moves me.  Sometimes I simply express appreciation.  Sometimes I ask for assistance or guidance.  I listen with my inner ear and journal what I hear.  The mighty dead can help us solve problems, give us perspective or inspiration.  I know I will be there for those I love when I am released from my body.  I will welcome connection and appreciate their prayers, praise and invitations to assist and guide.

So this end of summer, consider creating an altar to your own beloved dead.  Grieve and let go.  Celebrate their lives and share your fond memories.  Acknowledge their gifts, and make offerings to feed their bright and shining spirits.  Include your children.  It is a great gift to know where we came from and where we are going.  She, or He, who is remembered, lives.

Mari Powers, © October 11, 2012

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