the_gneech: (Default)


Just for fun I tried this guided meditation tonight. I thought it was going to be for connecting to future incarnations, but it's actually designed to take you 20 years into the future of your current life, which took me a bit by surprise, but I decided to run with it.

The meditation invites you, after some preliminary relaxation and transitional imagery to get you out of the current moment and into the visualization, to "find yourself" outside of what will be your home in 20 years. I was pleased but not exactly surprised to find a small but pleasant little home in a wooded area of California, possibly around San Luis Obispo or Scott's Valley.

Jack Donner, most well known among geeks as Sub-Commander Tal in The Enterprise Incident I knocked on the door and rang the doorbell and 68-year-old future me came to the door. I was no longer overweight, although a practiced eye could tell that I once had been (in that same way you can tell when looking at someone like Alton Brown that they were once heavier than they are now). My hair was thinner and white, and I still had the goatee, looking a bit like my brother and a bit like Jack Donner did in Cool Air. I also, I noted with some amusement, still sported the blue tropical shirts. :)

Future me was clearly taking life easy, although he told me he was still drawing furry art and comics and still writing. I asked him what was the most notable thing he could remember from the past 20 years, and he said, "The coaching, definitely the coaching." When I asked if there was anything I should be mindful of, he said, "Nah, not really. Things are a little rough where you are right now, but you'll work it out okay, it'll be fine. Really, it'll be great. Things are greener now, everybody's is a lot kinder, you'll see."

After discussing a few more items I'd rather not blab all over the internet ;P I asked if he had anything he wanted to tell me, and he said, "Yeah, actually. Thanks. Thanks for the work you're doing, and for the work you're going to do. I know you're interested in your other incarnations, and that's cool, but this life is a lot more than just the transition between the Beatnik and the Sporty Gal. This life is great, it's amazing really, and you're going to love it, even with how hard it was in the beginning."

As the meditation was coming to an end, I offered, "Hug?" and he said, "Duh, of course." It was nice to actually receive one of those massive lion hugs I've heard so much about. ;) I said, "I love ya, dude," and he said, "Hey, I love you too man." And off I went.

So, not what I was expecting when I started, but nice all the same.

-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Default)


This past coaching weekend's theme was "Spirituality," which tied in nicely with recent stuff I've been noodling around with in my incarnation studies. (I say "incarnation" instead of "reincarnation" because I've started trying to extend my experiences forward as well as backward, with some interesting results.) It's been a while since I went through the Brian Weiss video, so I decided to see what it got me this morning. Short answer? Spotty results.

Healing Color: Just a warm sensation at first. Nudging again to call forth a color gave me bright anime-beach-sky blue.

Garden: Got fixated on images associated with the anime-beach-sky-blue, and possibly dozed a little here, which made me lose the thread a bit. On the other hand, I got a neat idea for an art image.

In Utero: Again, just a warm sensation.

Beyond the Door: A small metal table and chair outside an apartment or villa (I couldn't see the building), on a small terrace in the side of a high hill overlooking water. I had the impression that it might have been Greece or Italy; it certainly had that Mediterranean vibe. I got glimpses of a medium-haired white cat trotting along ahead of me as I walked along, and my mind immediately went to Buddha, but I don't know if it was him or just reminded me of him. I didn't get any sense of "self," or even a solid context.

Spiritual Messages: None. I think I may have dozed here.

So, not the most dramatic session I've had.

On the other hand, I did have some thoughts stitching together timelines around what identified past lives I have experienced or connected to, and I have come up with this:

  • Today's Terrace. No "self." Time period unknown but fairly modern based on the style of the table and chair. May not be an incarnation at all.

  • The Long Haired Girl and the Japanese Man. As reported here. Time period unknown, details unknown.

  • The Horseman. As reported here. Colonial or Revolutionary period, possibly later, some town in a hilly/river valley area on the east coast of America. Male, white jodhpurs, black riding boots (no visuals besides that), at or near a bakery. 1700s or 1800s.

  • The Naval Officer. As reported here. Steam ship, later his own house on a rocky coast, Pacific Northwest or San Francisco bay area. Male, dark hair, naval beard. Strongest direct recall. Identified Inkblitz as another figure in the life. Mid- to late-1800s or early 1900s.

  • Robert E. Howard? Connection here is less direct experience so much as resonances in history, psychology, life themes, and physical appearance. It's always dicey to assert a connection with a historical figure, especially one who was so influential on your development in this lifetime. But having looked at it as objectively as one can look at this sort of thing, and discussed it with my counselor and some other folks interested in the topic, there's a fairly strong case here. Have tentatively identified Laurie, Kerry, and Hantamouse as other figures in the life. 1906-1936.

  • The Beatnik. (Encountered during regression hypnosis with counselor.) A bohemian writer living in New York or a similar locale. Popular among his friends, some kind of profound aesthetic or mystical experience around ruins/abandoned building in a forest or swamp, competent but unremarkable career. Presumably late 1930s - mid 1960s. Like Robert E. Howard, this would put him dying around 30, reasons as yet unknown. Counselor suggested drug overdose as a possible scenario, but that was just guess/intuition.

  • The Gneech. Current incarnation. Life of transition and many interesting (and challenging -.-) lessons, including a pretty significant psychological "death and rebirth" around age 30. >.> 1969 - ?

  • The Sporty Gal. What I suspect to be my next incarnation, based on meditations and self-reflection. Very little hard knowledge, which I suppose shouldn't be surprising considering it comes from the future, but a lot of what I'm going through now internally, seems to be in preparation for her.


So that's as far as I can see into the past and future. What it all means, is still up for grabs. But I want to record it, in the hopes of retaining it and finding more.

-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Default)


With a good push yesterday, I brought my NaNoWriMo total up to 3,106 words, putting me only two days behind, so I should be able to catch up quickly. Today I'm going to put together a cover as well.

The new lease is officially signed, sealed and delivered. We are moving back to Reston in the week between Thanksgiving and Midwest Furfest, because why do anything when you can do EVERYTHING AT ONCE? ;D

Had my first live past-life regression session with my counselor yesterday. No exciting mystical experiences, alas, but it wasn't a complete waste: my subconscious chewed on things from the session overnight and gave me what I think are some useful insights about my behavior and reactions going forward.

I have a job interview tomorrow night. :) A part-time thing that would basically pay the difference for our rent going up to go back to Virginia, so not exactly a big bump moneywise, but still valuable for other reasons. Will say more when things are definite one way or the other. :)

Finally, this month's Patreon supporter pledges are in! <3 Thank you, all you awesome peeps, I am super grateful as always for your support and encouragement. ^.^

This has been your Gneech News Report. We now return you to your regular Dreamwidth feed, already in progress.

-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Doctor Titles 2010)
So I had this idea a little while back, but it came into sharp focus last night. (And I'm sure I can't have been the first person to think of this, but I've never heard anyone else express it before.)

When you combine reincarnation with vibration theory/LoA, there’s an interesting implication. There are future life progressions of a post-apoc Earth, but there are also future life progressions of harmony and kumbaya et al. And according to LoA, reality lines itself up to match your own vibration, right? So maybe there are divergent timelines, the infinite universe model basically, all vibrating at different wavelengths, and your own personal vibration determines which future “you” go to. If your vibration matches a “dying Earth” future, that’s the one you end up in. If your vibration matches a “things getting better” future, you go to that one instead.

There are all kinds of weird wrinkles to this notion, not the least of which is, if “you” go to one future, who the heck is that in all those others? Aren’t they also “you”? Is it like a cosmic Github, with trunks and branches? Are there an infinite number of “instances” of me– just this current incarnation me, not the big-picture me? And if so, are there an infinite number of instances of all my other incarnations?

MIND. BLOWN.

Brain-breaking as this concept is, it also has one huge implication: if you can match your personal vibration to a good future, that will send you there. All those platitudes about keeping your chin up, looking on the bright side, etc? That’s really what they’re all pointing at. The faith that moves mountains, as they say, boils down to matching your own vibration to that of a future in which the mountain has moved– as opposed to all those other futures in which the mountain just sat there.

This is a strangely empowering idea, but also one that will mess with your head. Because you can’t just “wish real hard” and have it happen. In fact, “wishing real hard” usually comes from fear that the outcome you want won’t happen and that’s where your vibration goes. Indeed, the most effective approach, from a LoA standpoint, is to take it as read that good things will happen, move forward and take action based on that belief, and let the Universe handle the details.

Where have I heard that before? XD

When you boil it down, LoA is the same basic stuff as pretty much any religion, just with a different skin. Insert “God” for “the Universe” and “prayer” for “affirmations” and you’ve got the same practices that the human race has followed for thousands of years. It depersonalizes the deity, and turns the action of prayer into working on your own psyche instead of a phone call with God, but the actions you are actually taking are almost exactly the same. Does it work? Some people swear by it (like, literally), and for other people, not so much. But it’s very interesting (at least to me) how the same core things keep reinventing themselves over and over.

-The Gneech

Kimmie

Dec. 15th, 2016 11:21 pm
the_gneech: (Mad Red)
There are a wide variety of people who I've been in the same room with a lot but never really spent much time with, and [livejournal.com profile] jamesbarrett's sister Kim ("Kimmie" in the local parlance) is such a person. I met her in high school, something like 1983-1984, but our circles never really intersected much, and my memories of her over the years are mostly vague impressions.

Fast forward to the present, where she's been staying in an extended visit with Jamie and [livejournal.com profile] hantamouse for the past few months but again, when [livejournal.com profile] lythandra and I were there as more of a ghost that we heard about than anything else. But that changed tonight, when Laurie and I finally got over there to visit at a time when Kimmie was also home. We hung out, we played cards, we chatted about this, that, and the other thing.

It was cool. I think Kim and I spoke more in this one evening than we had over the previous 30 years combined, and I finally have a person to connect with the name. She told us that she was a psychic medium (something I was not aware of until now) doing what she called "energy work." She also informed me that I have an indigo aura.

Indigo aura personalities are creative individuals who inspire awareness, sensibility and integrity. Indigos are deeply influenced by their inner knowing. They are dynamic souls who assert their morality to promote teaching respect for all life.


...Works for me!

We also chatted a little about reincarnation and law of attraction stuff, and in the midst of conversation Laurie pegged her as an INFP, the two of them recognizing kindred spirits in each other.

Like I say, it was cool. We exchanged e-mails and I'm hoping we can keep in touch in the future. It's nice, after all these years, to finally feel like I know this mysterious figure who's been lurking in the wings, at least a little.

-The Gneech
the_gneech: (It's a Lion)
So this is going to be a weird post, rooted in the more out there aspects of the maze of mirrors that is my psychology. Just sayin'.

If you hang around in spirituality circles you will eventually come upon the idea of synchronicity– i.e., when a bunch of things happen at once and seem to be related, even if there's no clear connection. Now human beings are hard-wired for pattern recognition, it's a survival mechanism rooted deep in the ol' lizard brain, and most of the time it works very well, but it's also easy to flag with false positives. Have you ever seen someone lurking in your bedroom in the dark and turned on the light only to discover it was your sweater hanging on the back of the door? That's pattern recognition at work.

Given that, it's no wonder that synchronicity is a thing. Humans find patterns in everything, whether the pattern's actually there or not. But we're also talking psychology here– whether the pattern really exists is not as important for this discussion as to how your psyche reacts to it. It's like a cosmic Rorschach test.

The reason for all this preamble is that over the past few days I have had a moment of synchronicity with a very specific image, to wit: the planet Earth, rendered uninhabitable and devoid of life. It first popped up in an environmental documentary on a passing TV, in which a researcher claimed that methane being released by the melting of the ice caps would flood the atmosphere and kill every living thing by the year 2030. [1]

In the time since then, I happened upon the image again on a blog about reincarnation. Although the idea of past-life regression is fairly well known, there is (at least in theory) also the possibility of future-life progression, and a notable number of the futures reported are apocalyptic hellscapes in which Earth is blasted and empty, with living things, if there are any at all, being in tiny enclaves, or surviving in space stations, etc. [2]

The image came up again somewhere that I've forgotten in the intervening time; I think it was an RPG forum post or something similar. But what I do remember is my reaction to it, which was, "Okay, three times is enemy action." Or that is to say, there's a pattern. There's synchronicity. The Universe is talking to me.

A widely-accepted idea in reincarnation studies (as much as there are such things) is that between lives, you are the architect of your own life. Your "higher self" (or soul, or whatever you want to call that transcendent aspect) comes up with an agenda for your mortal self, you're born, and you give it your best shot. If you get through the agenda, well done! New goals for the next time around! If you don't, no worries, you can try again for the rest of forever.

Your mortal self does this pretty much on autopilot. However, the theory goes, that if you want to check in with your higher self, or your higher self wants to check in with you, it's possible to communicate. This usually happens in frustratingly vague "Give me a sign!" ways, but as your higher self is part of you (and/or vice versa), direct communication can also be done with practice and focused thought. Higher self is always listening.

So that brings me around to the point of this post, which is really a memo to my higher self, which is: I am not interested in these apocalyptic visions and I'm not going there. We make the world around us, and the world I will make is a vibrant, happy, and healthy one full of awesomeness, joy, and love. [3] I'm willing to accept that I have lessons to learn about grief and loss, the past decade has made that amply clear, but I'm not going to sink into nihilism or despair. As they say on the internet, I'm going to keep calm and bugger on.

So higher self, just release those visions and stop sending them my way; send me great things instead, please. You've sent me plenty of awesomeness in the past, I know you can do it. :)

Thanks. :)

-The Gneech

[1] With the disclaimer that I am not a scientist, I find this dubious. The Earth's climate has been considerably warmer than it is now, and life flourished in those periods. If melted ice caps were a straight-up killer, wouldn't that have already happened?

[2] How a future life progression could reveal a future in which there is no life to progress to, is a mental exercise I leave to others. It's also worth noting that these are not the only futures people have reported. Assuming there's anything to future life progression at all, that would suggest there are diverging timelines and something causes you to go into one or another.

[3] I'll get into vibration theory in some other post, but my point here is, I will rise to higher levels. Those empty and dead futures may well be there for souls who need that. I do not, and will go to different futures instead.
the_gneech: (Legolas silhouette)
If by some strange quirk you pay attention to such things, you have noticed that I haven't posted any reincarnation meditation reports lately. That's because, for the most part, I haven't attempted many. I've been too tired most of the time, due to moving and stressors and bad sleep and a bajillion other things, so if I do sit still for 20 minutes, all I do is fall asleep.

However, I have made a few attempts, and indeed I made such an attempt tonight, as I actually got enough sleep for a few nights in a row and felt up to giving it a shot. Alas, as has been often been the case, I didn't get very far. I did get a few fragmentary memories and fleeting images, but most were disjointed and I couldn't tell you if they were anything but random neuron firings in my brain. There also seemed to be a certain amount of actual psychosomatic resistance– at once point I started getting the itchies, for instance, and scratching an itch in one place would just make one pop up somewhere else.

I asked myself, in my semi-hypnotic state, "What's happening here? Why is there resistance?" and the only response I got was, "No, just no." So for whatever reason, that gate is closed at the moment. Not even a hint as to why, just a flat shut down.

So I guess whatever part of my psyche is connected to all that reincarnation stuff wants me to let it be and concentrate on my current life for now. Which is fine, it's not like I don't have plenty going on. But it's a little frustrating, because I'm still curious. Once you start digging into the notion that what is "you" consists of something much larger than your current trip around the merry-go-round, there is a strong desire (at least in me) to reconnect with the rest. On the other hand, assuming reincarnation is true, then presumably the memory wipe happens for a reason and I'll understand it better once the current trip is done.

However, I'm going on the record as saying now, that I resent you (me) keeping secrets from my (your) self. And I want to remember that part, on the other side.

All of which said, next time I do an "on topic" meditation [1], it'll be about things in my current life.

-The Gneech

[1] There are different kinds of meditation. The classic "quiet your mind" meditation is generally considered the most useful and provides the most health benefits (physical and mental). However, there's also "meditating on" something, which is getting into that quiet meditative state and letting your subconscious and semi-conscious brain chew on a problem. You just sorta pose the problem to yourself at the start, like releasing a ball at the top of a hill, and let go. It's quite different from actively thinking about something, but honestly, tends to also be much more effective. [2]

[2] See also the "have some pie" scene in Men In Black III.
the_gneech: (Default)
Stressy, flaily, and S.A.D.-ey all week, which is not a healthy place for my mind to be. So today I made it a priority to meditate in some form. Since that's built right into the Weiss past life regression video, I figured that was a good way to go.

This session's healing color was straight up sunlight, particularly yellow-white and warm southern California sunlight. Gee, I can't imagine why.

The childhood memory that came up was sitting at the dining room table, c. 1981 or so, watching The Adventures of Robin Hood on the portable 6" TV while eating spaghetti. This swirled and mixed with memories of one night that we (Mom, Dad, Brother and self) went through something like five Celeste pizzas at the same dinner table, just cooking one right after the other. (This was back when Celeste still made full-size pizzas.) I have no particular reason why this memory should come up other than association– [livejournal.com profile] lythandra and I recently watched Robin Hood on TCM.

The prompt for in utero memories prompted the usual sort of generic gurgling noises and sensation of being upside down, although the suggestion to remember my birth did prompt a mental image of my parents and siblings as they would have appeared when I was a newborn, with my mom holding a baby that was presumably "me" (seen from third person). I have no idea if this is associated with a real memory from the hospital, or it's a composite based on photos I've seen of my family from that era.

When prompted to imagine myself in a garden, I found myself in a cliffside park overlooking a beach much like the one we visited in Capitola with [livejournal.com profile] sirfox and Candy, with steps leading down to the water. Instead of my usual human self, I was actually Muse this time, which somewhat surprised me, sitting on a bench and simply looking around calmly. Instead of visualizing a door, the path to reach a previous life was to go down the steps, and I started to do that, but unfortunately Laurie started walking around upstairs, which distracted me for a moment and threw me off from that.

The distraction quickly passed, but by then the video had moved on to the "imagine the end of that life" portion, which quickly and decisively appeared as a return to the coastal cottage of the seaman from December. I was back to being my human self instead of being Muse as I observed the scene; this time I got to see more of the house, an exterior view of it as a two-story white Victorian, definitely on some kind of coastline. Judging strictly by the look, it could be California, it could be Maine, it could be Wales, even.

But I'm pretty sure in this case it was California, because when prompted to consider "Why this memory? What is it telling you?" I received the very clear answer, "Because Laurie, Buddha, and Inkblitzer are all important, and they were all part of that life. It's also why you've felt so strongly called to go there. You want to go home!" So... maybe? But I notice that none of those three are in California at the moment, whereas [livejournal.com profile] sirfox, who prominently is in California, was not mentioned. Maybe he's adding a new wrinkle to a scenario that's being replayed? Reincarnation is weird.

In any case, then it was time to move on from that life and look for a spiritual guide or guardian, I quickly found one, which took on the form of a massive pillar of yellow-white light, maybe 4'5' across and a good three to five stories tall, which occasionally had plasma-like cascades run up or down its length. Every once in a while a large kite-shaped bit of this plasma would extend away from the body, flitting back and forth, reminding me somewhat of Raava from Avatar: Legend of Korra, but yellow instead of blue and without all the curlicue designs.

Raava from Avatar: Legend of Korra

I didn't know (and still don't) any details on who or what this entity was, other than an instinctual connection, and we greeted each other as old friends.

Me: "Oh! ...Hi."
Entity: "Hi." (Telepathically? I don't remember a voice.)
(Video: "Are there any messages for you?")
Me: *looks to entity*
Entity: "I love you."
Me: "Aww! I love you, too."
(Video: "What do you need to know?")
Me: *looks to entity*
Entity: "Just keep going."
Me: "Really? Are you sure? It feels like everything's a gigantic mess right now."
Entity: "That doesn't matter. It'll be fixed by the end."
Me: "Um... hmm."
Entity: "I know it's scary. But remember, there's more going on than just what's happening right now."
(Whatever that means!)
Me: "I'm worried about Buddha."
Entity: "Buddha will be fine."
Me: "In this life or a future one?"
Entity: "Either way."
Me: "...'k."

...And that was pretty much the end of the session.

So what does it mean? I have no idea. Keep in mind, these reports are just laying out what happens in my head as I go through these things, so they are somewhere in the no-man's-land between memory, imagination, stream-of-consciousness, and dreamscape. I make no claims to have actual knowledge or evidence of anything. I'm just letting my mind do what it wants and writing down the result.

-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Blank)
In my thoughts about reincarnation/past lives topics, I keep coming back to this story from Ian Stevenson:

"When I first went to India, I met with a swami there, a member of a monastic order. I told him about my work and how I thought it would be important if reincarnation could be proven, because it may help people to lead more moral lives if they knew they would come back after death. There was a long silence, a terrible silence, and finally he said, 'Well, that's very good, but here, reincarnation is a fact, and we have just as many scoundrels and thieves as you do in the West.' I'm afraid that rather deflated my missionary zeal."


I was thinking particularly about the difference in how one might approach their life in a "this is all you get" (or "traditional western") mode vs. a "this is just your current spin of the wheel" (or "eastern") one. [1] I mean, at the end of the day, particularly given the power of rationalization, people are pretty much going to do what they're going to do.

Take "chasing a lifelong dream" for instance. In theory, if you believe you only live once [2], that should inspire you to go for the gusto! ...Unless you are so fearful of screwing up your one chance that you get paralyzed by indecision.

On the other hand, if you believe you will go around again and again until you get it right, that should inspire you to take risks and go big because failure is an illusion! ...Unless you get distracted or just putter around forever because there's nothing pushing you to strive forward.

In the end, we (being humanity writ large) don't really know (although I suspect most individuals have pretty solid views on the subject). Regardless of how the game actually plays out, what people do still boils down to individual character. A saint is going to be awesome to/for everybody because that's what they want to do, regardless of whether heaven is waiting for them or not; an asshole is going to be an asshole whether they're just plain dead at the end or they'll have a karmic debt on the next go-around.

So, yeah. As strange as it seems, it looks to me like the afterlife and worldly morals/ethics have surprisingly little to do with each other, regardless of what the preachers say.

-The Gneech

[1] I have read (but don't know how true it is) that early Christianity embraced the concept of multiple lives, but that it was basically "edited out" by church leaders in favor of the "heaven/hell forever" model in order to make it easier to control their followers. It was a totally fatuous thing to do, if so, but given the way humans are sometimes, it also wouldn't surprise me.

[2] Either because you get one shot at life and go to heaven/hell, or because we're all bags of electrochemical reactions that are effectively self-programmed robots who just think we have a consciousness because we've evolved to tell ourselves so. Pick your existential horror of choice.
the_gneech: (Kero asleep)
My sleep has been weird for the past several days, which has in turn led to a certain edginess and wonky moods. This was exacerbated today by a very unpleasant encounter with neighbors involved in a domestic dispute that ended up with police involvement. Nobody was hurt (as far as I know), but it left me rattled and jumpy. (As in, when we passed another neighbor's house and the family cheered at a football game, I literally jumped because I was afraid someone was screaming.)

Since I've been quite busy lately, I've kinda fallen off the meditation wagon, so I decided to relax some tonight with a reincarnation session. The results? Mixed, but on the whole positive.

My healing color visualization this time was a pastel lavender, and that part of the meditation went very well. However, as the session went on, and I got more and more relaxed, my ability to remain focused quickly dissipated. All I managed to get during the childhood memory portion was a series of random memories of riding in a car as it drove under things, such as under the river-side of the Kennedy Center, or under overpasses, and so on. This, I'm pretty sure, was prompted by the racing game I've been playing on my iPad for the past few days.

During the in utero section, I'm pretty sure I actually drifted off to sleep for a few seconds. This is always an iffy section for me anyhow. I have theories about this, and may expound upon them later.

During the section that was supposed to be remembering a previous life, I got a few more childhood memories, and in particular, going to a record store at Fair Oaks Mall and buying the soundtrack to the Popeye movie (on vinyl, natch, 'cos it was 1980), and there being a cardboard standee of Robin Williams and Shelly Duvall in the store in their movie costumes. Then I drifted in and out again until the "waking up" part of the session, at which point, well, I woke up.

So past-life wise, definitely a wash. However, at the end of the session, I felt more centered, happy, and relaxed than I have for days, and I'm confident that I will sleep well tonight. ^.^ So by that reckoning, it was a big success.

Speaking of which, time to actually go to bed, I think. :) The new Suburban Jungle will go up at midnight, and tomorrow is weigh-in day. I'm very curious how the reduced carb efforts will perform. :)

Gnite world, and have an awesome tomorrow. I love ya. <3

-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Mysterious Beard)
So, say what you want about 2015, it was better than 2014, and for that I am grateful. In fact, while it's had its rough spots, when I analyze it carefully I find that it was also better than 2012 and 2013, being in fact one of the best years I've had in a long while.

How so? For starters, this is the first year in several in which the number of friends I have at the end is higher than the number of friends I had at the beginning, instead of the other way around. Not only did none of my close friends or family die this year, but I made new friends! And that is worth more than words can express.

2015 was also a very mixed bag news-wise, and I won't pretend it wasn't. But something huge happened this year that I don't want to forget:



It doesn't impact me personally, but it changes the shape of the world for many people I love, and it wasn't something I would have ever guessed would happen in my lifetime. Whenever I start to worry about the state of the nation, I remember that this happened, and hope returns. The U.S.A. can be a great nation, when we summon up the courage.

As for my own personal year, many of my plans were all gang aft agley, and many of the best things that happened were things I didn't expect at all. Looking back at my goals...

  1. Sell the House and Move Already: Did that. Ambivalent about the results. I don't like The Staircase even half as much as I liked The Hobbit Hole, even at half the price and twice the liquidity. But this was always (as Doodles the Great put it) a Rebound House, and we'll be out of here as soon as possible. I'm hoping for spring.


  2. Bring in $13k Income: I haven't run the numbers, so I don't know if I did this or not, but my guess is "not even close" even with the Starbucks job.


  3. Four Issues of Rough Housing: Three and progress. Issue four was disrupted by a novel. More on that below, but issue four is under construction and will start running next week, so this item is still on the boards.


  4. Get Dungeons & Denizens Rolling: Didn't happen. Between Greg and myself both kinda stalling and/or getting caught up in other things, the project has just sorta languished. I'm not sure we wouldn't be better off to just put it to bed and move on to something else.


  5. Continue to Lose Weight: This is a weird one. I got down into the 270's, but have drifted back up to 288.9 as of this morning. But I am slimmer and more toned than I have ever been. Am I gaining muscle mass? I dunno. Unfortunately, last month Weight Watchers ditched their useful and achievable model in order to become just another "live on fumes and exercise 26 hours/day" bullshit plan that is just as doomed to failure as the rest. So I expect I'll be dumping my membership. I'm grateful for what it taught me about which foods were good and which ones were bad, as well as for the progress it helped me make over the past two years, but clearly it's time to move on.


  6. Keep Flossing Them Teeth: This is a pretty set habit for me these days. :)


So what did I achieve that wasn't on my list?

  • Novel and a Half! I wrote the Airship Pirates novel! And in all honesty, I think it's a very good novel. The next step on that front is hunting for publisher/agent. I was planning to devote December to that, but the Starbucks job interfered; once I actually get to work on that, however, I fully expect it to move quickly. The other half novel was the revised outline for the Brigid and Greg novel, which I was making huge progress on until the house sale and move bumped it to the back burner.


  • Reincarnation/Meditation/LoA I don't even know what prompted me to start going down this path, and I've barely scratched the surface of what I've been doing here in my LJ "reincarnation reports," but the experience has been something akin to this:



    Part of the reason I haven't talked about it all is that is it's such an intensely personal experience that I can't really describe it in words that don't utterly fail to get it across. Another part of it is that a lot of it falls squarely into the realm of crackpottery, and I have better things to do with my time than fend off a legion of tiresome snarky and dismissive comments from the usual suspects. So I will just say that over the past few months I've felt happier and more centered than I have at any other time I can remember, and I have been seeing results in the "real world" all around me. I'm very pleased with this development and intend to continue!


So that's the year that was. Although it didn't up being as big a year of going big as I was expecting, it was still a good year and movement in the right direction!

So what are my goals for 2016?

  1. Issues Four and Five, Plus the First Collection. Rough Housing is going to continue, and I think this year it's finally going to come into its own. The first collected volume will carry issues one through four, for which I'm going to go back and do some cleanup of continuity, some revisions of the character design, and some generalized fixing of things.


  2. Publish That Book! I have a terrific novel that only five people have read. This needs fixing. ;)


  3. Finish Another Book! Whether it's Brigid and Greg, a second Sky Pirates book, or even Charlie Providence, we'll see.


  4. Get the Money Sitch Fixed. Some of this is dependent on [livejournal.com profile] lythandra's new job, which is currently floating just on the other side of a probability wave and should be appearing at any time; but I also want to be bringing in proper money myself and– and this is the important part– I want to be doing it with my real work, the writing and comics, and not with some phony-baloney day job I took just for the cash. My creations are valuable, and it's time they started earning what they're worth!


  5. Move. We need to live in a place we like. This is not negotiable. I'm still California dreaming, but I'm not going to fixate on that. I believe in incremental improvement, so even just being in an apartment/house with enough room and some sunshine will be considered a success. A roomy craftsman rambler in Santa Cruz would be a slam dunk, tho. ;)


  6. Get Back to Conventions! This is something of a sub-set of the money thing. I only worked two conventions this year, AC and MFF, because my plate was so full of other things. (Technically I did attend FC this year, but I always think of FC as being part of the year leading up to it. So, FC was a 2014 thing, even if it did happen in 2015.) But we're already on lock to go to Dragon*Con next year, and of course I'll at least be doing AC and MFF again. I'd like to do AwesomeCon, and I want to find more cons to go to.


  7. Stronger faster slimmer better. I don't get this whole "weight staying the same waistline shrinking" thing, but I'm not going to complain about it. While I'm in considerably better shape than I was last year or the year before, I'm not quite ready for Speedos yet. I want to get there this year.


  8. No more afib. Heart chakra's opened up. My "love being blocked" problem is opening up and going away. If the afib was a physical symptom of that (and I suspect it may have been), hopefully that means I'm done with it as well.


  9. Bernie Sanders 2016! Workin' on it. :)


For the moment at least, I think that covers most of it. If I've forgotten something, please let me know!

-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Mysterious Beard)
Went through the Brian Weiss video this morning; the recurring motif was definitely that of the sea.

This started with the "healing color" visualization, which was the bright cerulean blue of a sunny sky. In particular the visualization that came to me was of a beach, phasing back and forth between being a realistic beach and being the more-vivid-than-life colors of an anime beach. The bright blue color was suffused with the warmth of sunlight, simultaneously giving it a "yellow" feel [1].

Appropriately enough, the first childhood memory that came up when prompted was of the National Museum of the U.S. Navy where I went many times as a kid, which had chunks of WWII-era battleships and submarines set up for kids to climb on and play around, including the deck guns and periscopes. This memory led to a string of other childhood museum-ish trip memories, including going to the National Zoo with my family when my mother's parents came up to D.C. when I was around three-ish (I was in a stroller, that's all I can point to for my age), as well as any number of field trips or trips with my Uncle Kenny to the Smithsonian Air and Space Museum back when the U.S.S. Enterprise model was still hanging from the ceiling in the stairwell, and the Natural History Museum. Brian Weiss prompted me to consider why this memory came up and why it was important right now, and I got a very clear response of, "Remember, the world is bigger. You've been stuck in a very small focus of home-work-home lately. There's more to life."

The video moved on to in utero memories, which I always seem to get spotty results from. In this particular case I got the impression of amber light and a distant muffled heartbeat. (And yes, I know amber light makes no sense in utero. But that's what came to me.) I also had a vague sensation of my body, and particularly my head and face, being very small, smaller than my consciousness properly fit into.

When prompted to visualize a garden, the oceanic motif returned as I found my consciousness swimming around a coral reef in bright blue water, something I've never actually experienced but have been wanting to add to my "bucket list" as of late. Brian Weiss said to visualize a door that would lead to a past life memory and my brain supplied the door to Engineering from the original Enterprise [2]. When I passed through this door, I caught a fleeting glimpse of a mental image of a submarine, but this was a model or schematic diagram of some kind, not an actual submarine.

As the images came more into focus I saw the railing of a steamer, which was close enough to the shore that I could tell it was a forested headland, and I think there was a bridge ahead of us. Whether we were putting out to sea or coming in from a voyage, I'm not sure, but I was a member of the crew, one of the officers I think. Ahead of me I saw a friend/colleague of mine, although he was turned away so I couldn't clearly see his face. I know he had sandy brown hair and a nautical-style beard, and my mind connected him with InkBlitzer, although whether this was actually one of Blitzy's incarnations or just a realization of an analogue relationship ("In the previous life you were friends with this guy the way you're friends with InkBlitzer now" kind of thing), I'm not sure.

The video then prompted me to go to the end of that lifetime; I saw the bedroom of a coastal cottage as you might expect from a seaman. It was mid-morning and there was light coming in through the windows, but they were obscured by gauzy white curtains. There was a bed and "I" was in it, the first time I've ever seen another version of myself in one of these exercises. I looked a bit like James Mason in 20,000 Leagues Under the Sea, dark hair and cropped beard with streaks of white. I was somewhere in my '60s, bedridden and clearly not going to recover. I was aware of some family members were around me, but only as vague shapes. Brian Weiss asked "What lessons are there to learn from this life?" and although I contemplated the question, I didn't get a direct answer.

I suspect the next portion of the meditation provided an indirect answer, however. When prompted to find a spiritual guide or a relative, my mom was instantly there, which surprised me. I told her that I wasn't happy with the way her own passing had gone, her in bed with her mind shut down by morphine and only the hospice care nurse to be with her, but that I hadn't been able to figure out a better solution. She wasn't bothered by this particularly, and when I asked her why she had chosen to go that way, she replied, "That wasn't a lesson you needed to go through, so I wanted to spare you from it."

My studies in reincarnation, life-as-school, and spirit groups prompted me to think about my relationship with her, and so I said, "Are we done with all the stuff we had to go through?"

"Mostly," she said, presumably meaning that there'd be a little more to deal with in a future lifetime, but that hopefully it wouldn't be too much more to cope with.

"Good," I said. "I'm tired of fighting. I just want us to love each other now." We hugged, and I said, "Thanks, Mom."

"I'm not really your mom, you know. I just played your mother this time around."

Such a friggin' her thing to say! XD I just replied with "You know what I mean."

"Yes," she said. "I know what you mean." As the video prompted me to head back to normal consciousness, I could see that she was leaving, so I simply kept repeating "I love you" until she was gone, because really that's all there was left to say.

Then Professor Weiss counted up to ten, and I opened my eyes.

-The Gneech

[1] Blue + yellow = green. Green is the traditional color of the heart chakra. Just sayin'.
[2] Hearkening back to the model in the Smithsonian, which is a connection I didn't make until I was writing this. I have long connected spaceships and submarines in my mind– I have often said that the best Star Trek movie ever made was The Hunt for Red October.
the_gneech: (Mysterious Beard)
Went through the Brian Weiss video; other than a few bits of memory involving my old Mego Star Trek figures on a bed tray when I was home sick as a child, I got almost nothing but flickers and momentary glimpses. My healing color, when I could see one, was turquoise. When I attempted to visualize a garden, I seemed to be stuck behind a kind of rubber mat with a clear section, it looked kind of like a car door, or maybe being inside a work pod like the ones in 2001, that was open around my feet but for whatever reason kept me insulated and isolated from anything I was trying to picture. Then in the later portions of the video, the visual fragments turned into dream fragments and I started dozing in and out of sleep.

I did come back up to being awake when prompted in the video, so presumably some part of my mind was still trying to follow along. But conscious brain apparently needed a nap more than it needed any past life memories, today. A little disappointing, but not entirely surprising. I have been working very hard, and so of course I'm tired. There's always tomorrow.

-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Mysterious Beard)

Three Good Things for Today


  1. I had the day off! Got some lotion for my drying-out knuckles and had some yummy pizza for lunch. :d

  2. Finished the "Soarin ColtSpice Ad" pic and posted for my Patreon supporters. I'll post it to the world at large tomorrow.

  3. Finally started posting SJ to my FurAffinity page again. (Was that today or yesterday? I think it was today. But just in case it wasn't...)

  4. BONUS GOOD THING! The cats were adorable today, particularly Buddha.


Three Goals for Tomorrow


  1. Post said Soarin pic to FA/DA. :)

  2. Do a past life meditation in the morning before my counselor appointment.

  3. Go to my counselor appointment.


And now... sleep!

-TG
the_gneech: (Mysterious Beard)
Yesterday and today I read Brian Weiss's book, Many Lives, Many Masters, which is basically a history of how he got involved in the field of past life/reincarnation study. It was interesting, but didn't really give me a lot of insights I hadn't already come to.

This afternoon I tried to do a regression meditation, only to be thwarted by needy cats and a severe attack of grumpiness, the kind of "zero to enraged" anger that afflicted my dad every time he cooked dinner and that comes to me when I really, really need a nap.

So I punted on that session until nap and dinner had been acquired. When we came home from dinner, I tried again to go through the meditation session. This time was more successful, but it was still a fairly rough one.

Visualizing a healing color barely worked at all, although I did manage to get a tactile sensation like being under warm running water, such as in a shower. Calling up a childhood memory brought up a girl I'd had a sort of proto-relationship with around the ages of 9-10, and a specific memory of being with her on the Metro riding downtown for a visit to the Smithsonian. In many ways, this girl was much like [livejournal.com profile] lythandra, almost suspiciously so– right down to being a Star Wars and roleplaying geek named Laurie.

When Dr. Weiss asked what the significance of the memory was, I had an easy answer: the specific memory was one of the first times I realized we had a strong connection and very close friendship. As for why it was important, well, I eventually destroyed that relationship with an act of extreme pettiness that I never really understood the reason for myself (unless it's some bit of karmic residue from previous incarnations), and I have always felt very guilty about it. I imagine Laurie W. is still out there, somewhere, and I have occasionally thought about trying to look her up and apologize for being such an ass, but I can't think of any way to go about it that wouldn't just be a giant awkward mess.

From there we went on to the in utero memory, and when prompted to explore for feelings, I was overcome with a wave of profound but unfocused sadness, which I identified as actually being "psychic residue" so to speak from my mother. According to my sister, my mom used to suffer from acute depression, and if she was in the midst of that while carrying me, it would make a lot of sense that I simply inherited it. When the time came to re-experience birth, I did get a physical sensation compatible with being upside down and/or on my back, followed by a feeling as if I was being suspended in mid-air by my shoulders and chest.

I had a difficult time coming up with any imagery for a garden or door to a past life, other than getting a very brief glimpse of a teenage girl with long, very straight hair. But once "through" the door I got a fairly strong image of some kind of a sauna or hot spring, with a wooden slat floor that had a hole in the middle for some kind of heated rock and a lot of moisture underneath. There was a middle-aged man in 1950s style glasses, with a towel wrapped around his waist in the sauna, and I eventually identified him as being Japanese.

The images shifted into a very cartoony mode at this point, and I think my mind was starting to mix images from Avatar: The Last Airbender in, specifically the guy pictured here, for reasons that make sense only to my subconscious. My conscious mind broke in here to argue that Avatar's Earth Kingdom was more like Han Dynasty China than 1950s Japan, and the whole thread of my thoughts began to unravel.

When Dr. Weiss prompted me to move forward to the end of that life, I remember that there was a definite scene with some kind of significance, but it was very fleeting and I have lost it in between the time it came to me, and the time I got to my keyboard to write about it.

At that point, the meditation came to an end, and I was "back," feeling vaguely frustrated, vaguely ashamed of 10-year-old me's behavior, and vaguely sad. I am now simply trying to process, learn from it, and let go. I may do a bit of gratitude meditation before going to bed, to try to bring my mood up a bit before I sleep.

Three Good Things For Today


  1. Payday! Finally. :)

  2. Red Lobster, to celebrate [livejournal.com profile] lythandra and my anniversary (which is actually Saturday)

  3. Chatted a bit (via DMs) with fantasy author J.M. Frey, who seems like a very nice person

  4. BONUS COOL THING: [livejournal.com profile] sirfox texted me pics of his halloween costume, which is cool :)


Three Goals for Tomorrow


  1. Write up my recent realization on why I haven't been doing any art lately

  2. Get to the end of my book's second draft

  3. Have some downtime


-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Default)
As you may know if you follow my Twitter feed, I was in atrial fibrillation ("afib") again yesterday, which I suspect had to do with pushing myself to do several long shifts at the new job last week. While trying to relax myself, I attempted to do a past-life meditation session, but was not very successful, although I did get some very clear memories of playground equipment at Shrevewood Elementary.

So today I gave it another shot, using a study carrel at the Reston Library by an accident of logistics. The change of venue was a little distracting, but not overwhelmingly so. I called up the Brian Weiss video on my phone, tucked in my earbuds, and off I went. I'm sure this session was influenced by my recent remembrances of my late friend KimbaWLion, as will as my discussions earlier today with Inkblitzer about the notion of souls transcending species.



The first thing I noticed was that my visualization of "healing color" was much stronger than I've had before. It wasn't a single color, but cycled between cerulean blue, pale violet, and into deep purple, depending on what was going on.

The main childhood memory that came up was a weird and embarrassing one that I don't really want to discuss in a public venue, because it was one of those "kids do very strange things" moments, involving a closet at Ogdenland in which I spent a lot of time hiding. Suffice to say my parents' reaction to the incident left an impression on me and leave it at that.

It wasn't the only childhood memory that came up, however. Another was waiting alone in one of the classrooms at the Schaefer private school in Falls Church, while my parents talked to the administrators about my possible enrollment. There was a jigsaw puzzle of an illustration of Frankenstien's monster there, and I was assembling it while I waited, finding the artist's interpretation of the creature quite interesting because it had nothing to do with the Boris Karloff version. That segued into another memory of one of my classmates in that same room, many months later, who had the Star Trek Phaser Battle Game, an ancient licensed Mego toy that I had long dreamed of. But he wouldn't let anyone else play it, leading one to wonder why he'd bothered to bring the thing.

"In utero" memories failed to bring any results.

The past life memory section started with a series of peculiar images that I couldn't easily parse, until I realized I was looking at some sort of plant matter, but huge. It took me several baffled moments to work out that it wasn't huge, I was small: it wasn't a human self at all, but an animal, and the things I was looking at were some sort of buds like turnip plants. They were clustered together around the trunk of a tree, which seemed incredibly huge in the memory, but upon reflection was probably of a fairly ordinary size.

The next image I got was from up in the tree, looking down at a bench and a streetlamp, apparently in some sort of park. From this I came to the conclusion that I must have been a squirrel. At this point in the session Mr. Weiss prompts you to go to the last day of that life, which seemed a little premature as I was just starting to get a handle on it. However, the image that came from that prompt was simply lying still, staring up at the tree and unable to move. Maybe I fell out of it and broke my neck? When Mr. Weiss suggested trying to float above that scene and look down at yourself, I could just make out a white critter-like shape, with arms curled up at its chest.

Mr. Weiss asks, "Why are you remembering this life now? What message is it trying to convey to you?" So I thought about that, and in particular I thought about it in connection with the Ogdenland memory, and the recurring theme seemed to be mistaking a very limited sphere of influence for being the totality of the world. We were pretty isolated at the Ogden Street house, making a lot of life there a little family microcosm where every weird little thing became huge and important. Similarly, "squirrel Gneech" seemed to be completely tied to his tree, having little to no knowledge of the world beyond, and ending his life at the foot of it.

This strikes me as an obvious parallel for the idea that the physical world is a projection of a larger one, and that mistaking the world around us for being all that is in unnecessarily limiting ourselves when there's a lot more out there, which is of course what all this meditation has been about.

On the way "back" to your body, you are encouraged to imagine a spiritual guide, and I was a little surprised that KimbaWLion presented himself in the role (although in retrospect it's like duh, of course he did). We had little to say in terms of words, simply hugged as long-separated friends would do. I told him how much I missed him, and when I asked if he had any messages or lessons for me, he said, "You're doing it right. Just keep on going." That was very comforting. :)

And that was pretty much it. I gave Kimba a fond farewell and ended the meditation, feeling very happy and at peace with the world.

Three Good Things For Today


  1. The meditation (as described here) and "seeing" my old friend KimbaWLion.

  2. A very positive session with my counselor afterwards.

  3. Finished another chapter in my second draft, now roughly 5,000 words up.


Three Goals For Tomorrow


  1. Leaf-viewing trip! :D

  2. Get more writing done.

  3. Watch another episode or two of Legend of Korra.


That's all for now. Gnite world, and have an awesome tomorrow. I love ya. <3

-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Blank)
Went through the Brian Weiss video yesterday. Childhood imagery was riding around on my first bicycle, a purple Schwinn. I particularly remembered the metal flakes in the paint, and driving through puddles fast to make sluices of water fly up.

In utero imagery produced nothing except a vague "hospital room" set straight from Central Casting.

Past life imagery produced a pond around sunset, surrounded by small stones or possibly shrines that had candles lit on or in them. The pond was surrounded by low grassy hills, beyond which were trees. A small mountain was visible beyond the trees to the northwest. There were no people or visible "self" in the image, and it didn't last long enough for much of anything to take place.

This morning was unfocused meditation with Buddha in my lap. Peaceful and relaxing, but little to report.

-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Mysterious Beard)
Meditation session was quiet and mostly uneventful. Had to open my eyes periodically because I kept feeling like I was going to drift off to sleep, even after having 9+ hours of sleep the night before. After the meditation, spent the entire day being hungry and tired no matter what I ate or how many times I went back for more nap. Not sure what that's about.

Yesterday read Old Souls by Tom Shroder on my counselor's recommendation. Interesting, but didn't really tell me much I hadn't encountered before (except for putting just how awful India can be into concrete terms). It did have a few interesting quotes I wanted to make a note of:

"I wanted to ask you," I said. "At your lecture, that one question about your 'message'? Your answer about doctors considering reincarnation as an alternative possibility for the cause of birth defects seemed so– I don't know– small. We're talking about reincarnation, after all. Compared to that, diagnosing birth defects seems kind of a minor point, doesn't it?"

I think I expected him to see my point immediately, confess that he was just trying to avoid the question. Instead, with real feeling, he defended his answer. "Parents whose children are born with deformities suffer considerable distress not knowing what caused them, maybe believing they themselves did something that caused them. Being able to tell them that something entirely beyond their control may be at fault could be a great comfort."

Then pausing, he settled back and looked at me. He knew what I meant.

"In general, I tend not to claim too much for the spiritual benefits of proving reincarnation," he said. "When I first went to India, I met with a swami there, a member of a monastic order. I told him about my work and how I thought it would be important if reincarnation could be proven, because it may help people to lead more moral lives if they knew they would come back after death. There was a long silence, a terrible silence, and finally he said, 'Well, that's very good, but here, reincarnation is a fact, and we have just as many scoundrels and thieves as you do in the West.' I'm afraid that rather deflated my missionary zeal."


...

"That's the paradox," Stevenson said. "In the West people say, 'Why are you spending money to study reincarnation when we know it's impossible?' In the East they say, 'Why are you spending money to study reincarnation when we know it's a fact?'"


...

Tucker asked me if I had read the skeptical criticisms of Stevenson's research. I told him that I had, and was unimpressed by most of them.

"Of all the arguments," I said, "the one that still seems to me to carry the most weight is the fact that Alzheimer's patients lose every aspect of their personality– their memories, their abilities, their temperaments. And it all disintegrates in direct correspondence to the physical deterioration of their brains. The question is, if partial destruction of the brain destroys all the aspects of a person that might be reincarnated, how can we imagine that anything can survive total destruction of the brain?"

"There's a standard response," Tucker replied. "And I think it's a good one: It's like a radio. If you smash the radio, it's not going to be playing any music. But that doesn't mean the radio waves have disappeared. It just means there's nothing to receive them.

"The skeptics would respond, 'Where does the radio signal come from?' You might as well ask, 'What happens inside a black hole? What came before the Big Bang?'"

I ran into Tucker one other time before I left town. We had another long talk, at the end of which he expressed a frustration that I had long suspected Stevenson felt as well.

"I wish we could move on to attempting to understand the mechanisms behind these cases," he said, "Instead of constantly trying to establish this as a legitimate phenomenon."

"The problem is," I said, "if you start talking about how the soul migrates before you know what a soul is and before people accept that that's what your cases prove, you just look silly."

He nodded with a weary look. This was not the first time that that thought had occurred to him.


-The Gneech
the_gneech: (Default)
Tried to go through the Brian Weiss exercise yesterday, but hadn't had enough sleep. Couldn't keep from dozing off and eventually gave up on it. Might try again later today.

Going to try to mix in some broader meditation instead of focusing on the past-life stuff so much. The past-life stuff is interesting and useful, but it can also become a distraction from what I'm supposed to be getting done in this one.

Going to meditate on the difficulties I've been having with my art and what to do about it. I feel driven to do it, but then I spend my whole time fighting with it. This can't be right! Hopefully meditation will help me find what's going on in with that and fix it.

-The Gneech

PS: Have an alligator dressed as Woody from Toy Story singing to you about how to meditate.

the_gneech: (Default)
Went through the Brian Weiss video again, this time with headphones on and Buddha in my lap. I didn't drift into sleep this time, and actually got some images, which was good. Of course the phone rang near the end and poked a hole in my concentration, because phones are a plague on mankind. But I was able to mostly ignore it and keep going.

Healing Light In my mind, the healing light is a blue-green color, something like the ambient light of scuba diving.

Garden The image I got here was actually a pretty specific setting of a real-world restaurant with planters and trees in it. The restaurant in question also inspired the "Midas and Maenad" hotel that appears in my most recent novel, which is probably why it was fresh in my mind. I have a lot of thoughts about that restaurant, which I'll probably delve into at some point soon.

Childhood Experience Two came up this time. The main one was of a cedar shrub that was just outside the back door at Odgenland when I was growing up. I was a toddler, maybe three or four, and I would climb into the shrub and hide in there. I would occasionally sit on one of the branches, and bounce up and down like it was a seesaw. Of course it wouldn't be my life without the attached memory of my mom telling me not to do that because it was going to kill her plant. When Brian asks why this memory came up and what lessons it imparted, my mind quickly answered with, "Obviously, there is no action so innocent that I can't be made to feel guilty about it."

Unfortunately, the second memory has slipped away now. I remember that it was at Shrevewood School, which would make it between the ages of 5 and 8. Something about a sink in the classroom.

In Utero The only solid image I got here was the sensation of some gurgling noises, but that certainly makes sense. I also got a vaguer impression of my surroundings being brighter when he said to remember being born. Post-birth I didn't have any direct memories, but I did recall being told about the way I used to say "Ungie! Ungie!" even in the hospital and how my parents assumed this meant that I was hungry all the time. (And grew up overweight. Again with the toxic parenting, much?)

Garden and Door to Past Lives I got the image of a green craftsman-style door with ivy hanging around it, probably straight off of one of my Pinterest boards.

Previous Life Imagery I actually got something here. I didn't encounter a very defined sort of "self," but I did imagine a place. Specifically it was some sort of a town surrounded by forested hills, particularly "behind" me which was almost a sheer rock face. There was a two-story building on a street corner, the bottom floor of which was almost entirely open. The imagery shifted once or twice: at first I assumed the building was some sort of stable, but on second look it appeared to be possibly a bakery or pastry shop. Then I thought perhaps there were actually two buildings, one next to the other, with the pastry shop being actually on the corner, and the stables being next to it. When asked to "look down at my shoes," I did see some narrow black riding boots, which would fit with the stable idea. The only other person I saw was a woman, who was walking away from me. She was dressed in 1700s working class garb and carrying a bundle away from where I was, towards the main town, which was up a hill. I got the impression that this was revolutionary-era Virginia or Boston, although it was not a proper city so much as a busy town.

There might have been more, but I think it was sometime around here that the phone rang, knocking me out of it for a moment. By the time I recovered, this segment of the exercise was ending.

Spirit Guide Aunt Iris, of course, it's her every time. I've never met anyone else who actually gave unconditional love (although I know several people who do their best). [livejournal.com profile] mammalammadevil was there too. There wasn't much really to say on either end: I just told them both that I missed the hell out of them, and they responded with hugs. Some tears came of that.

And that was it. Not exactly a tale for the ages perhaps, but at least I got something. :)

-The Gneech

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