Body of Light Healing Arts Blog
…clearing the path to joy, growth, health, fulfillment and love.

Jan
21

by Larry Gifford

I like to meditate, “run energy,” sit in the song of crystal singing bowls, talk to my higher self and spirit guides, read spiritual books and commune with nature. Recently, however, racing around chasing our 19-month old son Henry, changing diapers, cooking, cleaning, playing, and working I started to ask myself, “When am I’m going to have time to be spiritual?”

And then the “wise Larry,” my higher-self, spoke softly into my ear and told me, “You don’t need time. You need intention.” Wise Larry went on to remind me that to be spiritual is not an activity, it is the intention behind your actions.

If I were an actor this is where I would loudly demand to know from the director, “What is my motivation in this scene?” In this case, I realize it is living life with the intention of spirit; putting love and light into every action. Wow, that seems like a lot. But, I believe this is possible, because spirit is not something outside of you that needs coaxing in, it is inside of you and wants to be released.  As I contemplate what that means to me, I realize I’m most spiritual when I take action from a space of balance, neutrality, certainty and unconditional love. To me it means being passionate, compassionate, and true to the spiritual me. It means being grounded to the Earth and connected to the Universe at the same time. It is living your life for the greater good of all involved.

I’m certainly not in that space all the time, but when I’m not I quickly know it. I become more judgmental, am quicker to anger and frustrate and I physically feel it in my throat, heart, or belly. It’s the same feeling I used to get when I’d get caught doing something as a kid that I knew I wasn’t supposed to be doing.

So, it doesn’t take any additional time to live a spiritual life. That’s nice to know. However, that doesn’t help me spend more time using the spiritual tools I enjoy; meditation, books, bowls, and higher communication. Which my higher-self points out is not an issue of time at all, rather how I choose to spend my time.

Ok “wise Larry” that’s enough from you today.

Jan
18

by Rebecca Gifford

“Your greatest contribution to humanity is your willingness to evolve.”
~ Matt Kahn, True Divine Nature

Change. It’s likely that you’re in the midst of it – anywhere from switching your shampoo to a complete spiritual and lifestyle overhaul. As our world goes through significant shifts, there is a lot of change going on around us and within us. It’s why we’re here, after all, in a body at this time. If it were easy, then why would we need to go through it?

Any such path — even one bound for happiness or more fulfillment or better health — is typically filled with obstacles as tiny as pebbles to as big as boulders. Most of them we put there ourselves. For this reason, it can take anywhere from a moment to decades, but it is, after all, a transition requiring a shift in perceptions, behaviors, patterns, beliefs, choices or all of the above. Here are some thoughts that can help make your journey less rocky.

(By the way, this is an excerpt from our January newsletter. If you want to sign up to receive it monthly for free, visit www.bodyoflighthealingarts.com.)

Give yourself permission. Know and believe that you are worthy of living your life to the fullest, and by evolving you are offering light and healing to yourself and everyone and everything around you. Do you truly believe you are worthy, or are you seeking someone else’s permission and validation before moving forward and making the changes you desire? You don’t need anyone else’s permission, but you do need your own. Give this gift to yourself and experience the amazing transformation that is possible.

Make sure your path is your own. Take a look at the path you’re on – even if it’s a path intended for growth. Is it yours? Or did you choose it because it meets someone else’s expectations? Take the time to truly look at your choices, consider them and make any adjustments necessary to make it right for you.

Identify the boulders. If the change isn’t easy or graceful, ask yourself (and your higher self) what is holding you back. What are the roadblocks? What steps can you take to move around them, move them out of the way or blast through them?

Allow and notice. Whatever emotions and reactions – even the most negative – come up during the process, notice, allow and welcome them. Then release them productively.

Find a regular spiritual practice that works for you. Whether it’s meditation, prayer, yoga, spending time in nature, going to retreats and classes, finding a church, getting healings, using crystals, receiving bodywork, setting aside time to be happily by yourself for five minutes every day or any combination of the above or all of the above… Have some way of quieting the mind, reconnecting with yourself, releasing the emotions and negative energy that come up or are around you, and healing.

Find a community. Even the most introverted folks may benefit from connecting with others who have similar beliefs or are having similar experiences. Spirituality, though at its core an internal being and knowing, is often expressed most joyfully when shared with those who understand.

Forgive. You and those affected by the changes you’re experiencing likely will react badly at some point, saying or doing something regrettable. Forgive them and have empathy for what they may be feeling but, most importantly, forgive yourself. Know that awkwardness and stress come with the territory. Forgive and let it go.

Be kind to yourself. Eat well, get lots of sleep, set aside a little time for yourself on a regular basis, participate in exercise that is fun for you and make sure you listen to your body. It can complain quite loudly at times, and that’s not a request you want to ignore.

Remember there is no wrong way to evolve. It happens how and when it’s right for you. It doesn’t have to be a result of a New Year’s resolution; it can start whenever you’re ready. It’s easy to judge ourselves for evolving “too slowly,” “not enough,” “making a mistake,” or “doing it wrong.” There is no wrong. If you stray from your path, get back on it. If you decide a different path makes more sense, take that one. Your journey is yours, and it is happening and will happen exactly as it’s supposed to.

Jan
11

By Larry Gifford

Generally, people tend to ridicule the decisions others make if the decisions don’t make logical sense. This is unfortunate, because being your own person and giving yourself permission to act instinctively in the moment without logic or judgement  is a wonderful gift to give yourself.

The Fool card in Tarot reminds us to be willing to trust our instincts, take a leap in life, start a new journey and live in the moment in order to find joy, peace, adventure, knowledge and freedom. Practically speaking, you can’t always be in this blissful, innocent, connected space, but the beauty of The Fool is that you can access him at any time. The Fool is the “0” card which isn’t meant to be a single number, but represent all numbers in the Tarot. It belongs nowhere and everywhere simultaneously. This allows us to call upon the energy of The Fool throughout our life’s journey. The Fool is helpful during transitions in our life as we embark on a journey or new beginnings. The energy allows us to take a leap, let go of worry and fear, and trust the flow.

A word of caution, you can’t manipulate or manufacture spontaneity. The Fool will turn into a trickster and your decisions and actions made in this “pretend present time” will back fire and cause trouble. This tends to occur when people consciously create chaos to evoke reaction or results. The Fool doesn’t care what others think or where his actions lead. He’s in his bliss, connected to his higher-self and tapping into animal instincts. This is the ultimate expression of present time.

The Fool packs lightly, moves freely, has no discernible past, and trusts the Universe to guide him through his new adventure – which can seem perilous and filled with angst at times – but ultimately, is the path that leads you to liberation, wisdom and solace.

Mr. T pities The Fool; I recommend you give yourself permission to embrace it.

Jan
04

by Larry Gifford

As you begin the new year, one of the things you can do to prepare yourself for whatever the Universe sends your way is to let go of everything from 2010 (good and bad) and start fresh with new, creative life force energy in 2011. Doing this helps you to be in present time and create a spiritual space to manifest a beautiful, loving, balanced, successful, healthy, and abundant new year.

Throughout your body and energetic system you are holding on to everything that happened in 2010; the good times and the bad,  the triumphs and defeats in your career, your love life, your health and more. In order to start the new year with new energy, just let go of 2010. I know, it’s easy to say, but hard to do.  Here is one way to go about it based on a guided meditation I conducted this past weekend.

The next time you are in a quiet space or in meditation, ask your higher self to help you release the energy you are clinging to from the past year. You don’t need to know what it is you are releasing or even “see” it, just give yourself permission to let it all go.  This helps take you out of the past and provides a clean slate to create the life you deserve in the here and now. While you are releasing you can just “release everything” in one fell swoop or systematically call upon certain energies to exit your space. Here is a list of some energies you may want to let go of…

  • All your energy surrounding work and your ability to earn and keep money
  • Physical health problems
  • Commitments kept and broken
  • Your ability to create and finish projects
  • Your general sense of safety
  • All of the emotions you expressed and suppressed
  • All feelings of guilt
  • Your ability to accomplish things in life
  • Your ego; how you see yourself and others in daily life
  • Your experiences with loving yourself and others; heartache, heartbreak, self-doubt, self-denial, self-esteem, self-worth
  • Your ability to communicate with yourself and others; verbally, non-verbally and listening
  • Everything that was said about you in 2010, and everything you said about other people
  • Intuition, coincidences, deja vu, and general knowingness
  • Ability or inability to make decisions
  • Your experiences with religion and spirituality, including your connection to higher source
  • Your peace
  • Your oneness

As you call for the energy to leave your energetic space, you can imagine a rose in front you and direct all the energy into the rose. It can be any size, any color, with or without thorns or leaves or dew. This is your rose. It can grow as big as you need it to be to hold all the energy you send into it. After it’s filled up, place an imaginary stick of dynamite under the rose, light the fuse and blow it up. This doesn’t hurt the energy, but instead de-energizes it and cleans it, leaving millions and millions of tiny neutralized particles of energy. Give the energy a push and send it back to wherever it came from (the Universe knows) and call your own energy back to you in the form of a giant golden sun above your head. This energy collecting above your head is new, creative life force energy. It allows you to create anything and everything you want in 2011 so long as it’s in the best interest of all involved and in the best interest of your journey. Let the sun fall into your body and fill you up from head to toe. Feel the warmth of the golden glow and the sensation that you are free to create at will and move forward in your life without being tethered to the past.

Allow yourself to be here — on this planet, in this city and state, in this particular place, at this specific time — right now. This is present time. This is where dreams and ideas are actualized into everyday life.

Welcome to 2011. Enjoy the journey.

Dec
21

Happy Winter Solstice from Body of Light!

Did you know?…

It’s no coincidence that many cultures have some sort of celebration, often incorporating nature and mythological figures, around this time of year — everything from Santa to the Oak King (see crazy photo to the right). Meaning and celebration of the passage of fall to winter, and the shortest and darkest day of the year, traditionally varies from culture to culture, but most recognize the concept of rebirth in some way. Today is the actual solstice for us here in the Northern Hemisphere. It’s the start of winter, when the earth slows down, takes a rest and prepares for Spring. This year it also happens to coincide with a rare lunar eclipse — making the energy around us strong and ready for change.

Around sunset, consider taking a moment to stop and show gratitude for the sun that offers us light, warmth, energy and abundance throughout the year, whether you can see it or not. Consciously bring yourself into the present, leaving the previous year’s emotions, relationships and traumas behind you. Celebrate all that you have right here and now. And begin setting your intentions for the coming year.

Dec
17

By Larry Gifford

The next time you are dealing with a problem ask yourself, “Is this really MY problem?” Often times, as a way of dealing with issues, people pass along their issues. By making their problem someone else’s, they are free from having to deal with it in the moment.

For instance: Someone reaches out to you and wants to take you to lunch to discuss something, but they aren’t available to meet when you are available. That is actually their problem, not yours. Often times they will try to make it your problem by saying something like, “Geez, I’m not available any of those times….” Awkward silence ensues.

You have two choices here:

  1. Solve their problem by offering alternate times that likely aren’t as convenient for you.
  2. Let them solve their own problem by gently, but firmly reiterating that the times you’ve already offered are the only times you have available, and if they can juggle their schedule you would be happy to meet with them.

This is a simple lunch timing issue, but it can apply to problems big and small. I encounter people every day who are asking for advice or pulling their hair out as they try to solve problems only to realize, after a few minutes of dialogue, that they aren’t the owner of the problem.

Why stop co-signing other people’s problems? Life is hard enough as it is, and when we can’t solve every issues we are presented with we often feel guilty about it. And guilt begets karma. No one wants to create unresolved karma over something that isn’t theirs to begin with, right?

You are only responsible in this life for you, your very young children, and pets. That’s it. Everyone else is on their own. Can you help? Sure. You have free will. You can do anything you want. Is it your responsibility to solve other people’s problems? No. Give yourself permission to allow others to solve their own problems.

If you are someone who passes along problems take some time to examine why you do it. What issues are you avoiding? What are you afraid of facing?

If you are someone who eagerly accepts others problems take some time to examine why you do it. What are your motivations for getting involved? What does helping solve other’s problems do for you? Why is that important to you?

Dec
15

“Where are we? You mean, when are we?”

– The Ghost of Christmas Past, Scrooged

For us, this holiday season means a trip to our childhood home and the first time most of our family meets our son Henry. The potential for stress, jetlag, family drama and the concentrated nature of the visit to take us out of the present and distract from those wonderful moments when Henry meets his aunts, uncles, cousins and some of our dearest friends is high. Believe it or not, we’ve already come up with some ways to help us stay in the present. We thought we’d share.

Take a technology break. Turn your cell phone, Blackberry and iPhone off. Stay off Facebook, Twitter and YouTube. Choose to be in the room with the folks who are actually in the room with you. All your friends and emails will be there when the day is over, and consider how nice it will be to have only one conversation at a time.

Get out from behind the camera. It’s difficult to truly be in a moment if you feel like you’re busy trying to record it. You can still take photos and videos, but be mindful that sometimes it’s more fun to experience the happy times than to merely observe them.

Notice. If you start to feel ungrounded or out of present time, notice your surroundings. Take a couple of deep breaths and simply notice where the breath goes in your body when you inhale and what it feels like when you exhale. Take a big whiff. Do you smell baked goods? Pine? Peppermint? Burning firewood? Macaroni and cheese?

Acknowledge the abundance. If you don’t traditionally offer a blessing as a family, before you dig into your holiday goodies or feast, give thanks silently for the bounty and those involved in bringing it to you – the farmer, the harvester, the cook. The holidays usually offer some of the best food of the year, so appreciate each bite and really notice what it tastes like.

Keep a good to-do list, and then forget it. If a list of everything you have to do the next day or week keeps popping in your head, take the time to write it all down…then forget the list until you need it.

Keep your feet on the ground. Literally.

Make memories. Set your intentions on creating new holiday memories instead of dwelling on embarrassing or unpleasant holiday memories from long ago.

Drink more water and less alcohol. Sometimes our habits and formerly tried-and-true survival tactics can make things more difficult and emotional, not less.

Take advantage of the moment. Sneak under the mistletoe with your sweetheart. Tell someone you love how much you appreciate them. Help whoever is stuck in the kitchen and strike up a one-on-one conversation with them. Potential for lovely moments happen dozens of times an hour during the season. Have fun discovering them.

Finally, remember the love above all. The holidays often come with visions of the perfect Norman Rockwell family gathering. Ultimately, it doesn’t matter if the dog gets into the trash, the turkey is overcooked or your nephew doesn’t thank you for his gift. And most families are far from “perfect.” As long as there’s love, it is worth celebrating…right here, right now.

(This is a reprint from the Body of Light Healing Arts newsletter. Visit www.bodyoflighthealingarts.com to sign up to receive the full monthly edition starting in January.)

Dec
12

by Larry Gifford

What would happen if you stopped? Just stopped. Your green light of life turns red. It could be for a moment, a minute, an hour, a day or a week. What if you gave yourself permission to stop worrying, stop replying to email and answering your phone, stop doing, stop trying to meet yours and others expectations, stop trying to so hard, stop fixing things, stop reacting, stop thinking about what’s next, stop feeling guilt, shame or regret? What does that feel like? What does the world look like from there?

Take a deep breath.

Be still.

Be here.

Be now.

Notice what you notice.

Stop.

Dec
06

by Larry Gifford

This past weekend I had the privilege of teaching nine bright healers the basics of energetic medicine during a two-day seminar. Through the weekend, we shared information, experiences, stories, asked and answered questions and cleared away a lot of energy.

What was remarkable about this weekend, for me, was that as I taught, I learned. And the more I taught, the more I learned. The more information I imparted, the more information I received. And as the students learned, they taught each other and me. Through the weekend we all learned to overcome fears, doubts, anxiety, and shine golden light into the dark corners of ourselves. We learned to trust ourselves, new friends, and the Universe. We were all students and we were all teachers.

The more I think about it the more I understand that every day we are all teachers and students. The give and take of knowledge in society is done at break-neck speed now so we’re somewhat immune to the information exchange taking place. Take a minute to think about all the people you influence, inform and guide on a daily basis — face-to-face or via facebook.

Keep thinking about it.

That’s a lot of people. Now think about what it is you are teaching, what information you are imparting. What kind of teacher are you? How are you imparting your knowledge?

Now ask yourself what do you want to teach? What kind of teacher do you want to be?

You might be saying, “This guy is crazy. I’m not a teacher. And I don’t want to be a teacher.”  Too late. We are all constantly teaching each other how to be healthy, loving, joyful, and fulfilled beings. Teaching comes in all shapes and sizes; offering career advice, showing how to be an unconditionally loving spouse, or teaching your mother-in-law how to use the child-proof toilet seat lid. Each day, there are opportunities for us all to be teachers. Sometimes, we aren’t even aware of the teaching moments in our life. Have you ever work for a bad boss and said, “I’ll never do that?” He wasn’t trying to teach, but he did.

Try as you might, you can’t shut off the teaching valve. It must be hard-wired into our DNA. So, you might as well make good use of it. Give freely to others the knowledge you have. Be the teacher you want to be. Let those who are ready to recieve your information, share in the abundance of your knowingness.

Dec
06

by Rebecca Gifford

The Nine of Pentacles card in the Rider-Waite Tarot is one of the most beautiful cards in the deck, both artistically and energetically. A tall, graceful woman stands in an abundant garden, garbed in beautiful gold and crimson robes, gazing at the bird peacefully perched on her hand.

Experts and users agree about both the beauty and meaning of this card. The woman is happy. She is quiet. She is at peace. She is deeply satisfied. She has found her happy place.

In my young life, I was able to find such peace in few places – libraries, empty churches, movie theatres, quiet forests or beaches or lakes or gardens like the one enjoyed in the card. It took me a long time to learn what this card teaches… This woman’s garden is her solace and her peace, but not anywhere she needs to journey to. Her garden travels with her wherever she goes. Her happy place is not found without – it is found within.

The love, peace and deep satisfaction of your inner life, your spirit, The Spirit, your garden is always with you…always accessible…always eager to provide. It is the brilliant gold light – the God light – of Universal energy that shines within us all.