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"The essence of bravery is being without self-deception."
-Pema Chodron

 
#44 October/November 2007 PDF Print E-mail
Greetings from Maya



As I sit down and begin to put the magazine together, the date is September 11.   I can’t help but think back to six  years ago.  In the summer of 2001, Joan Dixon, Carol Dirck and I open the then Isis Institute across from Los Bagels on “I” street in Arcata.  We rented a healing room and a kitchen area off the alley entrance.  All year long Carol and I had been getting together and honing our extra-sensory abilities.  Carol had come into her mediumship gifts quite suddenly, and it seemed as though the dearly departed were anxious to have someone  to talk to.  Whether we were together in person or on the phone, people who had crossed over or those who were stuck in between dimensions showed up to share their stories.  In fact, it was unusual if this didn’t happen.  Back then we would sit for hours in her living room facing each other on the couch talking to dead people.

It was within the first week of September when Carol and I found ourselves sitting alone together one night at Isis.  We were in the kitchen when, just like a scene from a scary movie, what should appear but an ice cold breeze.  We got up and checked all the windows and doors and returned to the kitchen only to have the incident repeat. Even though we were quite used to spirit visitations this was very different, we had never before experienced the drama of the ice cold breeze.  

The energy in the room shifted and became very intense.  It is easy to have an immediate fear response in such a situation, the element of the unknown can cause the imagination to run wild and old terrors can be triggered.  We were both unnerved and Carol who didn’t like night visits to begin with, threw her hands up over her crown chakra, squeezed her eyes closed and said, “Who is it, what do they want and tell me when it’s over!”

I was seated in the perfect position, facing the door to our healing room.  Carol had her back to that door.  Over her left shoulder in the doorway appeared a very commanding spirit presence.  It was neither  “he” nor  “she” but a balanced mixture of both.  It was large, over 9 feet tall and intense enough to make your heart pound.  As the energy became clearer to my eyes I felt/saw/experienced it to be very focused and incredibly loving—not in a soft fuzzy way—in a fierce powerful way.  I realized this Being was what seers before me would call the Grim Reaper or the Angel of Death.  The being opened its large billowy cloaks and I saw thousands of souls lovingly and protectively contained within them.  They seemed to be in various states of shifting dimensions, some just beginning to know they had crossed over, some still unaware.  The being, who was so not Grim, said, “Please, begin to pray now for them, for there will be many who will be crossing very soon.”  This being was kind, deeply peaceful and completely without fear or judgment.  I was so mesmerized by it’s energy, that I can still see and feel this experience as though it had just happened yesterday.  As suddenly as it had come, it was gone. The room was warm and Carol and I could breathe again.  

We went home and checked the internet to see if there had been an earthquake or a flood anywhere in the world that would explain the appearance and the words of the not-so-grim reaper.  There was nothing to be found that night or over the course of the next few days.  Carol and I knew instantly on Sept 11th that the twin tower tragedy was what this angel had been referring to.  It had become clear to me that what we had experienced that night was that this powerful Angel of Death had already been working with, loving and protecting the beings who were to cross over that day a full week ahead of time.  I took from this a deeper knowing that all was in divine order, and I had an absolute assurance of that a great, fierce, loving light was there to greet those souls who crossed over that day...and that it will be there to greet me when I cross over.  I had never felt so much safety, love and intensity all at the same time.

*****

All form dies.  Period.  How do we see that death?  Is it the end or has form just dissolved into formlessness? Is it incubating in the womb of the great goddess only to be reborn as a new form?  Can we trust this process, or are we fearful and suspicious of it?  Demetra George in her book Mysteries of the Dark Moon—the Healing Power of the Dark Goddess states: “... the fear of death was a product of left-brain perception that denies cyclical time and instead sees time as linear.  In linear time the end is no longer connected to the beginning. The end is the end, and death is the final conclusion of life.  Life and death are not seen as the two alternating phases of cyclical existence, but instead are viewed as warring opposites. In a cosmology where death is linear and final, not cyclical and renewing, death is the ultimate terror.”

All of us are working out our fear of death in a multitude of ways in everyday life all the time.  How gracefully and with how much trust do we let go of small things, or ways in which we have attached ourselves to ideals, things or people, seeking to define who we are by that which we are connected to?  Most of the time we don’t even know we are clinging to these things for safety and self-identity until it comes time to imagine life without them.  These then can become opportunities to practice facing death with arms open wide, welcoming and trusting that the transition is moving us onto something more real, more loving...for it is in foregoing our attachments to the things we think give our life meaning and definition that our true essence is revealed.

Up at Isis we have been practicing this a lot over the last couple of months beginning when Inana announced she would be leaving the Isis Osiris Healing Temple.  We sought then to consciously birth ourselves into the experiencing the unknown. To sit with the terror of not knowing what comes next, if anything at all.  Not controlling or keeping ourselves comfortable with the familiar; Letting go of preconceived ideas and of using our intuition to keep ourselves safe by knowing what to expect.  We chose, to the best of our ability, to surrender to Love.

I hoped that love isn’t just a woo-woo spiritual concept, but an actual force that will hold me when I let go.  I wondered if I could find a place within myself that already knew that death did not have to only be fraught with grief, fear, separation and loss. In giving up our attachments to needing to know what comes next, what would we find?  

And actually, more trust is exactly what I found.  For me, the key to connecting death with more grace and joy was directly related to consciously deepening my understanding that “only Love is real.”  I began an even more conscious practice of choosing to see love in situations where it appeared to be absent.

I followed my desire to focus on coming into a deeper relationship with life itself; whether it is in form or not, as an alive, sentient, conscious being that is always co-creating lovingly with us, and always gently ushering us deeper into ourselves.  I began to work with seeing life as my lover and breathing this awareness deeply into the inner sanctuaries of my heart.

Breathing my lover, Life, into my heart helped me understand that it really is an act of love to be ushered away from my ideal of going to study with Rosita Arvigo to learn the uterine massage work.  Breathing my lover, Life, into my heart helped me understand that it really is an act of love when Inana left the Temple. Going back and breathing my lover, Life, into my heart helped me understand that it really was an act of love when Joan left last year, when our family dog died earlier this month, and when our friend Carol Driscoll crossed over this week.  

And through it all, through the death of a part of my own ego, I have managed to find more trust in the intelligent consciousness of life itself.  I do feel more peacefully aware (on more levels within myself) that life is always operating with my (and your) best interest at heart. If I am ushered away from something I seemed to have wanted with all of my heart it is only because it will be replaced with something that is even more fully my heart’s desire, of something that I was previously unaware.  If I am to embrace a Benevolent Universe, then I want to heal and transform all of the places inside of me that still judge things to be unfair or wrong.  I want to see the level of love that is operating in all things at all times, especially when there is also pain present.

Though it’s not for the faint of heart to go rooting around in the darkened areas of our own inner landscapes, searching for where we have forgotten that death and rebirth are linked, it has been a worthwhile journey for me.  I can celebrate with joy that it’s not my time to learn the uterine work, that Inana has found her inner temple, that Joan needed to go when she did, and that now she has returned, and that my dog and friend are where they need to be right now.  —Not by skipping over the fear and grief of separation, but by allowing myself to even more fully feel, and move that energy through me. I can actually experience the feelings more deeply, knowing that I won’t drown in them, because I have a fuller sensory knowing that everything is Love— that we are not separate from that Love, in fact, we are it.

Cover Credits
“Harvest Full Moon Rise over the Cascade Mountains”
By David Haworth
Taken on Saturday evening on September 17, 2005 at Cape Horn above the Columbia river in
Washington state s even miles east of Washougal city. www.tommcmahon.net/2006/11shine_on_harves.html
 
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