Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Gaining Eternal Perspective and Knowledge About the Other Side!

Part 2: Seeing My Life and Myself from a Spiritual Perspective

So Mary Ann Winkowski taught me about the first level of the spiritual realm and the books I read by James Van Praagh took me to the next level.   I think sometimes people get confused about what a medium is and what they do.  Some would classify Mrs. Winkowski as a medium, but in fact she isn't.  I found this article that clearly explains how a medium works.  Please reference this link for deatils:   http://www.oprah.com/spirit/What-is-a-Medium-Rebecca-Rosen/1

Simply put, however, a medium connects with people who have crossed over into the light of God.  And they have to fine tune their skills - just like any talent.  In Mr. Van Praagh's case, he always saw spirits surrounding him and, as a kid, was readily discouraged about sharing anything he saw or heard from the other side.  He grew up Catholic, but was confused about the religion because of what he knew about the other side from the spirits he could see and connect with.

As a teen he ignored his gift as much as he could and pursued a career in broadcasting and communications - he wanted to be a producer and co-produced The Ghost Whisperer.  Eventually, the other world became so much a part of him, that he had to decide if he wanted to give up his gift completely or turn it into his profession, which is what he ended up doing.

While learning about mediums, my dear friend who interested me in all of this in the first place, confirmed for me that my mother-in-law (who died in 2003) is often around me.  I had premonitions that this was true all along, but she confirmed it for me.  I feel her presence often.  Although I never met her in this life, I know that she guards over my children and  is a strong presence for good in my life.  I welcome her and am thankful she is here!

I also saw my friend do a reading for a mutual friend and the spirit that was with us 3 women at the time was amazing!  When you have an experience like this, the spirit is testifying to you - so strongly - that there is an existence after physical death - that it moves people to tears!  And you know that what you are hearing is truly a message from the other side!

While I was having my own spiritual experiences with real people, I was reading about other people's experiences. I started reading books/accounts about near death experiences (NDE's) as well (which I will cover in my next post), but I also read a book called The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield.  This book paved the way for me to understand how a medium connects with the next life.  While the book has a fictional storyline, the principles it teaches are true.

Most importantly it taught me about "energy" and how we connect to each other and every living thing.  This book clearly defined for me the importance of staying connected to God.  I loved how it explained the effects of manipulation and domination.  This book, together with James Van Praagh's books, helped me to evaluate my past, present and future.  (For more information about the teachings from The Celestine Prophecy, go to this website: http://www.celestinevision.com/ and you can see 9 insights listed on the left side of this post.)

I read 3 of James Van Praagh's books, Ghosts Among Us, Unfinished Business and Talking to Heaven.  Remember that I mentioned mediums only connect with people who have crossed over into the light and they bring messages of love and hope to the living?  Well, I believe this is why Mr. Van Praagh specifically mentions that he does Not believe in a devil as an actual person, because he does not encourage "dark" encounters.  However, he does believe in evil!  Before he does a reading, or invites the spirit world into his life, he prays for protection and asks for only good energy to be with him.  I loved some of the imagery he taught for prayer!  He tells about envisioning God's love as a bright white light.  He says to imagine this love/light flowing in and around you - and everything you want protected or filled with love.  He is the one who helped me to see just how Very, Very powerful thoughts can be!

Because the veil is so thin for him, he can see people's aura's, or the energy surrounding a person.  Often he can see where the energy is sick or weak because of negativity in a person's life.  I loved the account he told of a CEO who was not very much liked because he was not a nice person.  One day the CEO walked past him and he could see knives sticking out of his back from all the negative thoughts people had thrown his way.  Mr. Van Praagh said that if this CEO didn't have any major sicknesses at the time, he was going to - if he didn't change who he was!  Whether those daggers were literal or not is not the point.  The point is that the negativity you send to someone - even via thoughts - affect yourself and those you point them toward.  After reading that story I quickly repented of negative thoughts I had been sending to certain people in my life - Especially myself!

James Van Praagh's books made me see life differently and heightened my spiritual awareness tremendously.    From his books I learned that there is no accidental experience, that we can take EVERY single experience that we have - good or bad - and learn from them.  Together, with the Celestine Prophecy, I learned to look at my past and present; evaluate where I was, how I got there, and the lessons I had learned along the way.

All of a sudden I knew why things had happened in my life - things I had been beating myself up about and questioned for years!  I was open to revelation that helped me to see my life from an eternal perspective.  I clearly saw the choices I made, why I made them, and the lessons I had learned because of those choices.  I learned to be thankful for my trials and I learned how to see important lessons in even the hardest of things!

Let me be very clear that in all the research I have done about "the other side", I have never, not even once, or a little bit, wanted to have any sort of experience like a medium does!  However, all of his books have a section where he teaches you tips about how to be closer to the other side.  I would read them out of curiosity - the whole time praying for NO such thing to happen to me!

It's a bit ironic that even though I didn't want any sort of "heightened" spiritual experience, that's exactly what I got.  For those of you who don't know, I have a baby monitor in my house.  The part that monitors noise is upstairs in my hallway, and the part you hear the noise out of sits on my kitchen counter.  Around the time of reading these books I had a few interesting experiences.  One day when Jessie was in school and the other 2 were taking naps, I heard a child's voice clearly say, "Mom."  Of course, I went up to check on my kids, but they were sound asleep, although they have been known to talk in their sleep before, it is few and far between.  I thought it was a bit "supernatural-ish", but nothing like the next experience where I was laying next to Jessie on her bed (at bedtime) and felt a little hand tap my back.  I turned, fully expecting to see Anastasia standing there and there was no one.  Ana and Tressa were sound asleep in their beds!  I then realized that, a few weeks earlier, Jessie had been complaining about her sisters running back and forth in the hallway.  Every time I went to check, they were sound asleep.  I put 2 and 2 together and realized there was a child's presence in my home and asked for Heavenly Father to not make it so obvious to us - or let it be known in some other way - He did.  To this day I have no idea why I had that experience!

Reading these books has certainly made me closer to the other side (which I will cover more in depth in Part 3) and I could talk, for hours, about the things I learned from Mr. Van Praagh's books.  However, I think this blog post is enough - along with other tidbits on the right side of this post.  If you feel you would like to learn more about a medium's life, keep these things in mind:

1. Make sure you set clear boundaries about what sort of spirit you want to enter your life and home because these books - if you believe them - will open you to a closer connection to the spiritual realm!

2. Mediums connect to their spirit guides, or their guardian angels, if you will.  They may encourage you to pray to them - this is wrong.  While a guardian angel is there to protect and guide you, they do not want you to pray to them and they will get any message they may need through you speaking to them directly, or by  praying to God!

3. Most mediums also believe in re-incarnation.  I believe almost everything James Van Praagh has written about is true, but this is one thing I do not believe!  I have done some research on this topic and will discuss it further in my next post, however, I will caution those of you who are easily swayed to read up more on this topic (if you feel it may be confusing to your current beliefs) before you are confronted with someone who believes in re-incarnation.

I very strongly recommend The Celestine Prophecy as a good read!  Below is a clip from the movie.  It's called:  giving and receiving energy.  It is a bit cheesy to see the energy floating around the people, but I think it illustrates the point very well!  The woman is talking about a piece of ancient manuscript that has insights about how to live your life.  (Please ignore the weird koala picture at the end!)

Friday, October 26, 2012

Gaining Eternal Perspective and Knowledge About the Other Side!

Part 1: How It Began

I've tried to write this blog post several times now, but haven't been able to write things exactly as I want them to come across.  Not only that, but I think it may take a few posts before I have written everything.  (Hence the Part 1 written above.)  Also, I have been a bit fearful that there are some people in my world who may look at me a little differently after reading this.  Spiritual things are kind of interesting like that - if someone is not ready for certain information, it can cause criticism, disbelief and doubt and make people look at you like you're a bit crazy.  To me, this spiritual experience has been a bit surreal and I might not have believed it had it not been me experiencing it.  Needless to say, this time the prompting to write about my experience is so strong that I feel I have to try again and make it as good as I can, pray it will help those in need and leave it at that.

About 3 years ago, a dear friend told me that she has a special spiritual gift... For her the spiritual world is very close.  She can feel the presence of people who have passed on and - in some cases - she has been passed on messages to those of us who are living.  At the time I had no idea there were people who do this all the time (they're called mediums) and in trying to explain this to me, she used the show The Ghost Whisperer as an example.  Because I love this woman and wanted to understand what she was telling me, I started watching the show to better understand what she meant.  Trying to understand my dear friend has taken me on an incredible journey, a spiritual journey...

As I was watching this show, there were many things that I believed and some I thought were just bogus.  My interest and disbelief in the show led me to research it more fully and I found out that The Ghost Whisperer is based on a real woman, Mary Ann Winkowski.  Incidently, she has written her own book about her her gift.  I read her book, When Ghosts Speak.  This book opened my mind to the afterlife.  Don't get me wrong, as an LDS woman, I already had a belief in, and a vague knowledge of the afterlife - but this was the first book that let in extreme details and filled in where other things have not.  Most importantly, I realized how close the "other side" really is!!!!

You have to understand that this is the same person who had a childhood friend who claimed her grandparents had ghosts in their house.  All I knew was that when people die they go to heaven.  I could not understand why any person who had died would cause any sort of mischief or "haunting" and I readily dismissed everything she said to me.  Looking back, I realize that I never felt comfortable in her Grandma and Grandpa's house and every time I went in, I wanted to turn around and run out, but I always chalked that up to me being uncomfortable -as a child- around old people.  Now, I know better.

Oh sure, I'd seen the movie Ghost, and the move Casper - both movies that clearly depict spirits who have not crossed over into the light - but I still had no clue that these were depictions of things that really happen! That is, until I read Mary Ann Winkowski's book.  You see Mary Anne can see and talk to spirits who have not crossed over into the light of God.  When she is asked to help out, she does anything and everything she can to help a spirit cross over into that light.  Which is, as she puts it, where a spirit belongs.

From Mrs. Winkowski, I learned that all spirits have this light available to them at the time of death.  For up to 3 days the spirit is allowed to cross back and forth between the two planes.  If a spirit decides to stay and not cross over then they are stuck on earth, with us, and without any light from the other side.  People choose to stay on the earth for various reasons.  Whatever the reason, it is not the place that a spirit is meant to be.  These spirits need energy to have any form of "life" and, because of that, they can cause huge problems to the living.  Most importantly, these spirits drain you from your energy and can cause sicknesses in the living.  Not only do they use human energy, but they can also use electrical energy.  Which is why it's common in ghost stories for the lights to flicker or something - because that is truly what an earth bound spirit can/has to do in order to function on this plane - they use energy.  (Incidently they can also cause electrical issues with a house - surprise, surprise.)

I know, I know, it sounds a bit creepy, but when I read her book everything made so much sense!  Mary Ann taught me why people stay, who or what, they may attach themselves to and that they surround us all the time.  She opened my mind to positive and negative "energy" and how it can affect us physically and spiritually.  The way that Mary Ann cleanses a home from negative energy (which can come from spirits, but can also come from our own negative thinking) is through a quince seed - a seed that is prayed over.  She claims it has special power.  I believe it does, but not because the seed is powerful in and of itself, it is powerful because of the prayers behind it!  Mrs. Winkowski did not claim this herself, but from her I learned why people dedicate their homes to God, why we are counseled to pray always and over everything!  Her stories and insight helped me to understand scripture stories of casting out devils.   From her, I learned that I should protect myself - spiritually - at all times.  I learned that prayer is a powerful tool and that it protects one from spiritual dangers that are, in fact, quite real!  Her book taught me about the first and lower level of the spiritual world.  Although I had no idea at the time, it was the beginning of my journey.  This journey has not only lead me to understand my friend, but it has taught me to better understand myself and my relationship with God and loved ones here and on the other side.

Mary Ann's book had a forward that was written by a medium named James Van Praagh.  I had an intense curiosity to read one of his books too!

(More on him and what I learned from him in my next post - Stay tuned!)

Just for kicks and giggles, a clip from the movie Casper:

Friday, April 6, 2012

Beads and Braids, Braids and Beads!

When Jessie heard that she was going to have a week break from school, practically the first thing she asked me was if I could put beads in her hair.  Let me just say that every time I do braids and beads, by the end of it, I am swearing I will never do it again!  At least, not for a very, very long time!  (I think it's been a year since I did it last!)  Needless to say, I did not immediately say yes.  Because it takes so LONG and when I do one head, I have to do all 3!  While I love the results, I hate the time it takes, the endless TV watching, and whiny-ness!  I don't know what it is, but for some reason, when the TV is on - all 3 girls think they need to be right there watching it, even if they are not the one getting their hair done!  So by the end of about 5 hours in front of the TV you can imagine how much energy they had.  This was day 2 of the braiding process.  I started Jessie's hair at 2 o'clock and ended at about 7pm.  They ran around for 3 hours before I could bear to put them to bed.  And I mean literally running - they were chasing each other all around the house!

So, why would I torture myself, one might ask - because it's worth it!  Even though it took 3 days, and roughly 19 hours to complete every head of hair, it was worth it!   Some people take their girls out shopping, or to get manicures...  But me?  I do my girls' hair.  I LOVE to do their hair!  I love the connection - literally and figuratively - I love the talking and just spending time with them!  I suspect that one day it will end, when they become teens and Mom's ideas aren't "cool enough" anymore.  But, until then (once a year) I will put up with the whining and the endless hours!