issue 9 of the new Enlightening Times Magazine!

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Featured Artist: lydia hellstrom

'I take my inspiration from nature and fairytales, trying to capture the spirit and energy of my surroundings and my imagination' You can contact Lydia via Facebook if you are interested in her work.

lydia hellstrom

lydia hellstrom lydia hellstrom lydia hellstrom lydia hellstrom lydia hellstrom


We would like to welcome on board as a regular contributor Marian Matthews. We look forward to lots of articles and blog posts over the next year. If you are an author and would like to submit a regular column or articles to the Enlightening Times please send an email to or

POETRY from our Regular Contributors

Awakening in the Looking Glass

A poem by Rashelle Reid

Awakening to wonder, awakening to pain.
Awakening to thunder, awakening to rain.
Awakening the senses, awakening my soul.
Awakening to seeing that we are always whole.
Understanding the miracle, seeing it with my heart.
Knowing even when I feel weak, we never are apart.
Sensing the spirit, rise and fall within.

Dependent on my thoughts, and what they allow in.
The energy runs through me, sometimes like a great big tide.
Tumultuous waves, this years been such a ride.
Fast and furious with trouble always threatening.
As I look around me, I see no signs it's settling.
The truth is coming out at such a mighty pace.
It's the final lap but who's going to win this race?
Good and evil, light and dark,
The fire's lit, it's awaiting your spark.
Join the choir, let us hear your voice.
That is when we'll finally rejoice.

What if the world was waiting just for you?
Would you wake up and know what to do?
The time is now, there is no other.
So let's all do it for our Mother.
The Earth has provided for all our needs.
So let's stop the madness and end the greed.
Corporations that have no soul,
Leaders that are out of control.
It's time for sense to prevail at last.
After all it's our reflection in the looking glass.

Rashelle Reid

Copyright © All rights reserved,

Enlightening Times Magazine 2013.



There is nothing that you have to do

You do not have to set the world on fire
with your wit or wisdom
court popularity
soothe the pains of others
grow rich or successful

You do not have to walk on water

All that is required is that you learn to love
the One Life breathing through you
and in this way
come to know the beauty of who you are

Then you will find that the heart
you once thought was broken
is unfolding its wings
and preparing to fly


Jannietta is a poet with a firm belief in the power of words to help connect us to the hidden depths within the human soul and spirit. She is author of two poetry books:
BAREFOOT ON GREEN GRASS and WILD SWANS FLYING. You can find out more about her by visiting her web site


Soulscapes Tarot Cards


From Behind The Veil

Weep for me at Imbolc's dawn
Let your tears fall like dew on the cold frosty morn
Let Brighid herself put your head on her breast
And comfort you til your soul is at rest

Sing of me at Beltane's noon
May the Lord and Lady grant your heart a boon
And as the maidens dance and leap the fire
Catch the beat and raise your voice ever higher

Dream of me at Lamas' Eve
At the Feast of Lugh, you will start to believe
That my soul is your's, as I once did avow
That I would love you then, and I love you still now

Speak to me at Samhain's night
Let the smoke from the fires take your words to flight
Then dance in the mist that fills the air
And lay a place at your table, for I am there

It has been a year and the wheel has turned
The rain has fallen and the Sun has burned
The wind has blown cross Albion's ground
And our souls still dance, for eternity bound

Tony Furminger 12/09/2013


tom hall

I see it floating down
This dust all over town.
Where it comes from
No one knows.
But it's floating down
All over town.

It settles everywhere
On my table, on my chair
On my TV and on my stairs
This dust from nowhere

Does it come from another dimension
Far too strange to mention?.
Or from the space out there
Beyond the farthest stars?
Or maybe it could be from Mars?

I see it floating in the air
No one seems to care.
Just threads and tiny specks
Drifting in the air.
Floating, floating,

Posted by


You are going out with the Yuletide by ms luci

This is a Christmas song for those of us tired of listening to George Michael, The Pogues et al
I wouldn't expect Michael Buble to include it in any top ten rundown any time soon.
The beauty of this latest effort by Luci is it's getting across the forgotten message of Yuletide, not some powdered down version of everyone's dream christmas.
Supported by a remarkably strong backing track, Luci's vocals sit somewhere between Kate Bush and the New York underground scene of the 1970's, an undeniable influence evident in a lot of Luci's work.
Visually once again Luci draws on the Hammer House of Horrors for inspiration and succeeds in striking a balance between whats going on onscreen and what you're hearing through your speakers.
If, like me, you're sick of having the image of a rosy cheeked Santa thrown at you at every turn... and find yourself in mid september humming "holidays are coming...." due to Supermarkets' incessant marketing campaigns.. It's good to know the spirit of Yuletide and what this time of year actually represents is alive and well with people of Luci's ilk.

For more of Luci's Groovy Tunes check out......

DM 21/12/2013

Enlightening Times Magazine If you would like to send Music to us for Review in the New Column please 'Like" the Facbeook Page and send us your music Directly


Main Images: velocity_clipped.jpg"Here's to the savages. The unruly, but decent-hearted mavericks who are owned by nobody and smite dogma. The aboriginals, native, indigenous, Gypsie hordes who cause sleepless nights for the missionaries and bureaucrats. The man and woman who has had enough of the spells of disenchantment cast by the Merchants of Nonsense. The lone gunmen and women of human consciousness who have built a firewall around their psyche which no cult leader, politician or brand awareness can ever penetrate. The last Mohican who still resides in the soul of all humans."


The coming year marks our initiation into the new world. We have only been playing so far, and like the teenager, 14 years into their new life, it is time to grow up. This is a pivotal period in the history of humankind, so I can reveal one fragment from my unpublished work The Key To Time.

Pattern is the curse of man. Numerology allows us to understand pattern, in the hope that we may transcend it. If we cannot, then the matrix surely has us.

2014 brings a warning from history. The year reduces to 7 (2+0+1+4), which in the Tarot is shown by The Chariot. The year will be high speed, with fast moving events. The global trends already set in motion will gather pace, and at times it will seem as though they have a life of their own, and that we are merely subject to the inevitable. It will only seem like that though. Developments and advances in all forms of travel may be expected. We may expect progress in the crossing of the North West Passage, cutting trade times between China and the West, as well as advances in personal transportation, including electric and driverless cars. We may also see advances in space travel. With the number 7 always associated with science and discovery we might see some genuine scientific breakthroughs.

2014 is the first 14 year of the new century and millennium, 14 being shown in the Tarot as Temperance, whose lessons are flow and balance. There will be renewed interest in the redistribution of wealth and opportunity across society. The word du jour will be tolerance, and occasionally intolerance. In a literal sense there may even be some attempts to divert large rivers or waterways. The imagery of the card is strongly connected to water, and it is hard not to see flooding of some kind.

To look forward we must also look back, to the corresponding years of previous centuries. The core lessons of Temperance are tolerance, time, patience, flow, acceptance, give and take, movement and change. This is what 2014 asks of us. But can we deliver? The last time we faced such a challenge was in 1914, the spirit of which is more alive than many would care to admit.

Read Full Article Online


A Thorn by Another Name, Could Be Less Prickly

by Niall Wildwoode

''Look at all of those bloody hawthorns!'', I shouted as I viewed a small, wooded bank on newly bought 'Moondawn'. More thorns than any other tree, it looked impenetrable. This statement alone, would have initiated a cull in the first year of at least 50% of them. But the need to keep my projects & developments visually blurred within the landscape, stayed my hand….thorns make good shelter.

Moondawn thorns

Some years later with a hankering to get as many varieties of fruit established on my holding as possible, I had to relearn the classic art of grafting : the craft of splicing the growing-tip of a desirable woody plant, onto a young, rooted species of the same, which itself displays traits of resilience not found in the former. Your roses will likely have been grafted (unless they're 'species' roses) – a variety will have been selected from thousands of germinated seeds, because of its colour, form and scent, but most likely will perform poorly in the long term. This is due to weaknesses brought about by generations of cross-breeding, but is resolved by grafting a piece onto a relative of the tenacious, wild dog rose; if the two 'take', then the dog rose will provide a strong root system & vigorous habit, whilst the hybrid does it's stuff at the flower shows.In my case I wanted many varieties of tree fruit. Starting with apples, I obtained 'scions' (small twigs) of the apple trees that I wanted, then grafted them onto specifically bred 'rootstocks' of apple which have a growth habit best matching my needs.

But, I do hanker for a little more self-reliance and adventure;  having to buy commercial rootstocks isn't a challenge…..something tinkling in the back of my mind….what did growers use before commercialisation?

OK, back to basics. Fortunately I've worked with trees and shrubs all of my independent life, & have a usable botanical knowledge. The largest percentage of our northern tree fruit are within the Rosaceae plant family….. apples, pears, plums, cherries, quinces..…even strawberries, raspberries & blackberries ( & roses, of course)! The trick it seems, is to find a native tree or shrub that will be a close enough genetic match to the fruit you wish to replicate.

Enter, Hawthorn!!! It's also in the Rosaceae bunch, and was used as a rootstock in earlier centuries to graft the fruit, Medlar onto, as they're VERY close cousins. So as a trial, I gave medlar a go on the regrowth of a felled thorn & ''hey presto!'', they 'took'!.....

Medlar graft on hawthorn, a little moth-eaten


  Next? Hmmm…PEAR!! These are a tad trickier, & are generally grafted onto a variety of quince rootstock. What the heck! I managed to find some 'Hessle' pear – a reliable, sweet, Yorkshire variety, & plenty of 'Conference'. Winter 2010/11 I picked several thorn stems worth playing with on a sunny bank, & slipped the pears in.

   I pretty much left it for a couple of years as life was busy, but recently had a scratch around & found that I had about a 50% take….damned good for something left out to the elements.

Grafting in session

So, ''that's a nice story…'' you might say, ''…and your point is?''……

The point is that our native trees in this plant family, happen to be some of the most prolific, resilient, fastest-growing species around. Don't we yearn to return to times when kids can go out to a hedgerow, woodland edge or copse, & pick ripe tree fruit at will? Instead, unless they have access to an orchard or well-stocked garden, supermarket 'blandings' are all they'll experience. Groups talk of 'community gardens & orchards', yet fail to see the wealth of potential within the trees they're grubbing up to achieve this – trees that are already rooted-down, established & vigorous, & which just need converting through grafting.This isn't a call-to-arms to convert EVERY tree, but to make use of those that might otherwise end up uncared-for, or destroyed….convert them to fruit trees.

Conference pear graft on hawthorn

POTENTIAL X 10,000'S, don't you think?

By the way, have you ever looked at a single rowan berry, & noticed the shape similarity to another, larger fruit .Guess what my next trick's going to be?

by Niall Wildwoode

For more information or to stay up to date with news from Moondawn Farm join them on Facebook Copyright © all rights reserved, Niall Wldwoode 2013.


Photo © Jade Ashcroft 2013

Even as a small child I was fascinated by the moon. I remember looking out of my bedroom window and peering to make sense of the markings which are visible, particularly on a full moon. Were they canals? Were they marks of a long gone civilization? It was long before the first moon landings and probes confirmed the view that the moon was an uninhabitable arid rock. Researching the significance of the moon, particularly looking at the role of the moon in magick and as a goddess  has turned out to be a personal voyage of discovery. Indeed I would go as far as to say my understanding of the big picture of our reality has been widened and new tantalizing  clues what is actually going on in the universe have been revealed to me.

Uninhabited it may be, but the moon has subsequently been found to have a profound affect on the affairs of humanity. The fact that the moon is worshiped as a goddess and used in magic rituals by some sectors of society is interesting enough. But the truth is that people, planets and all earthly beings are deeply affected by the cycles of the moon, at several interesting levels. How can this be? What forces and realities are operating here?

Moon Science 

Photo © Jade Ashcroft 2013

The moon is, in simple terms, Earth's satellite. It is a sphere 1/81th the mass of Earth and is somewhere around 400,000 km away from us. The Moon is in something called synchronous rotation with Earth, always showing the same face to us. It is the brightest object in the sky, apart from the sun. It is made of dark rock, its brightness is just reflected sun light.

Where did it come from? The Moon is thought to have formed nearly 4.5 billion years ago, not long after the Earth. Although there have been several hypotheses for its origin in the past, the current most widely accepted explanation is that the Moon was formed from the debris left over after an impact between Earth and a body the size of Mars, probably another small planet called Thea.

How does it affect us? Firstly, of course, it is a lantern, providing light at night throughout the planet.  On a purely scientific level the Moon's gravitational influence produces the ocean tides and the minute lengthening of our days as it almost imperceptibly moves away from us. It appears from Earth to go through phases, as the sun reflects different proportions of it as it moves through the sky. So the basic explanation is that the lunar phases are created by changing angles (relative positions) of the Earth, the Moon and the Sun, as the Moon orbits the Earth. Some people do believe that its power affects humanity in other ways, as the energies of the Moon interact with us. For instance, that at the time of the full Moon lunacy or Moon madness is more prevalent.

Beyond science Since ancient times these apparent changes and phases have made the Moon an important cultural influence on language, calenders, art and mythology. Some say that it us part of a matrix of energy that affects humanity, and its influence can be interpreted by skills such as  Astrology. The theory is that the whereabouts of the moon in the sky at your moment of birth can affect your characteristics and your life's path. Some people feel it goes deeper than that and worship the moon as a goddess and use its spirit in magic rituals. Astrology and the moon. One of the interesting ways that the moon is supposed to affect humanity is in its use in astrology.

Western astrology uses the position of the sun, planets and other heavenly bodies at the time and date of your birth, to predict your characteristics and give you a star sign.(e.g. Taurus, Capricorn etc) In general terms, readings of the heavens on a daily basis for that sign can then be used to give on going guidance. Astrologically, the moon is said to show the characteristics of your subconscious mind and some say soul or spirit. It is also much concerned with emotions.

Chinese astrology is, of course, based on the cycles of the moon.

Both systems are not, as I once believed, to predict any fixed future, but seem to be set up – like a satellite navigation systems- to show us the way though life and point out any potential hazards or best paths in our lives.

Why should these systems work? At base we are nothing but beings made of atoms in combination. We are held together by the energies generated by these atoms. We are energy beings living in a world of energies, gravitational, electromagnetic and biochemical, to name just a few. We live in an energy matrix. On one level, our thoughts are nothing more than biochemical energy. The moon is the nearest heavenly body to us. Its gravitational energies are very strong. It is entirely logical that those energies will affect us. Astrology can be seen as a way of quantifying this effect.

The whole story? Could the moon affect our lives in this way? Energetically, for reasons stated above, it must have a effect on us all. Could this effect be quantified into the astrological systems? Or does the existence of astrology itself seem to hint at a bigger picture of reality?

There are also many people who view the moon as a Goddess or use the moon in magick.

Goddess Moon

The moon has been revered as a Goddess almost since the beginnings of time. She has had many names and been worshiped in many guises. She also has been and is extensively used to facilitate  Magick. (The extra K is used to distinguish it from stage magic etc).

Magick can be defined as an effort to make a change in ones, or other's life by using ones own personal energy and the energy of surrounding elements. This can be done by spells, ritual or intention. The question is, how is the moon, in any guise, able to facilitate or enhance this? The answer is, of course, depends on the real nature of the moon. Interestingly even within those using the moon, Pagans, Witches, Wiccans and others there are differences in understanding about the real nature of her and what process is actually going on.

Alternative views on the true nature of the moon.


Photo © Jade Ashcroft 2013
  • As the Earth is seen as a sentient being (Gaia) who has merely clothed herself in planet form, so is the moon. She is here to help humanity.
  • The moon represents a Goddess. The Goddesses were here before Christianity or Judaism, and are available to help humanity. They have been pushed out of mainstream consciousness but have always been there. Their power is rising again with the ascent of the feminine spirit. They are available to help when asked.
  • The energies and electromagnetic flux of the moon are used to enhance spells or intentions. Every phase of the moon contains a certain energy. This energy affects us and everything on Earth. The moons visual phases just reflect the changing position of the moon and its position re the sun. These apparent phases merely signify the changing energy throughout the lunar cycle. The energies are here for our use but are themselves neutral. 

The above is just my synthesis of all the wonderful information that I have been privileged to receive. All of those aspects can be seen as manifestations of spirit helping us. The real questions arising, though, are where do these Goddesses themselves come from?  Did an intelligent designer of some sort created the system of sun or moon based astrology to help humanity? Do the quantified astrological effects just reflect the underlying physics or mathematical codes embedded in the creation of the universe either at random or by deliberate design? What big picture of the universe does all this indicate? What do you think?

Marian Matthews.
Visit for more posts on a variety of spiritual subjects
© 2013 Enlightening Times All Rights Reserved

The Seed of Yggdrasill-deciphering the hidden messages in Old Norse Myths, The Heritage Edition by Maria Kvilhaug, presented by Whyte Tracks publishers, Denmark

****Book Review of the Seed of Yggdrasil by maria kvilhaugn**************************


The Seed of Yggdrasill by Maria Kvilhaug 

Published by Whyte Tracks
ISBN 978 87 92632 28 9

This title is a hefty volume to digest but well worth every second of reading time. The Author has presented an outstanding text that anyone who is interested in the Old Norse Myths can delve deep into the heart of Norse Paganism and come out with a deep understanding of the whole belief system. Maria's translation and interpretations of the meanings of the Edda poems are brilliant. To fully understand the context of hidden meanings in the poetry you really have to take the time, as she has done, to break down each part into manageable segments to discover the wealth of wisdom within the words of the Edda Poems.

The last translation of the Edda Poems that I was aware of was Snorri's from 1220 and to be honest I found it hard going to read without any prior knowledge of the poems themselves, The Seed of Yggdrasill has been written in such a way that it fully engages the reader with the writing style and  without them having to have any prior knowledge of the subject. The text has been carefully crafted so that it allows the reader to follow the threads and tie them all together without getting totally lost in the semantics. 

This book will also appeal to anyone interested in the deeper meaning of Runes and their significance in the Norse Traditions as the author takes time to cover the concepts of the Runes and the Norse Gods, and their significance in ancient Pagan tradition.

Like most enthralling texts based on old manuscripts this material stems back to a secret book which was hidden until 1643 and revealed to a Bishop. The author has provided a scholarly masterpiece that not only redefines some of the original ideas from the initial translation but has presented a new way of looking at an old system that, depending on the level of interest of the reader, has the potential to breathe new life into rites of passage that could quite easily have faded into antiquity.

Maria's insights are invaluable and the text restores a large amount of knowledge and wisdom and this book is a must for any serious spiritual seeker to have on their reference bookshelf by getting intimate with the Northern Gods and Goddesses to broaden your knowledge of the old ways from the Pagan past.

The only criticism I have of the book is that unfortunately the binding on the hardcover separated away from the book but that won't stop me reading it again and again as it is truly inspirational, enlightening and a refreshing change from the hundreds of encyclopedias on magic and witchcraft that seems to adorn the bookshelves nowadays.


Maria Kvilhaug was born in Oslo, Norway, 1975. She graduated from the University of Oslo in 2004 with the Master thesis "The Maiden with the Mead – a Goddess of Initiation in Norse Mythology?" which was published in 2009. She frequently lectures and has written several articles on the subject of Old Norse mythology, many of which have been published on her YouTube-channel, where she has a rapidly growing fan club. 

Review by Jade Ashcroft © 2013 Enlightening Times All Rights Reserved



New Writers / Artists / Contributors welcome to submit to the Enlightening Times

Guidelines for writing articles for Enlightening Times.

Write for the Enlightening Times Magazine Click image for more info about Submissions

There are two different ways you can submit Writing / Art / Reviews or News for publication in the Magazine and on the Blogpage.

You can email submissions to us in .doc or .txt format to or to Or you can become a regular contributor and submit your articles online through the blogger platform. If you would like to be a regular contributor please email Rashelle or Jade and request an invitation to join as an Author to the blog.



Book recommendations:

Phi-Neter: The Power of the Egyptian Gods

"Leopard Magick (Hekau) & spells (Akhw)
mogg morgan


"Ancient Egypt is an intellectual and spiritual world that is linked to our own by numerous strands of tradition."
- Jan Assmann, The Mind of Egypt

Phi-Neter, means 'Power of the Gods'. In hieroglyphs this is represented by the hind-quarters of a leopard, a "Typhonian" creature, a predator who exemplifies the driving force of magick. In this book the author extends the core working material of Egyptian magick for himself and others to study and use. These techniques are manifest in the cult of Lord Seth – known as Typhon by the Greeks – and by all the other Gods of the Egyptian pantheon.

The Egyptian magician wields a power that was ultimately created by the Gods for the use of anyone who wishes to do their work. It is the same underlying power whether manipulated by Gods, priests, aristocrats, the common people or even the criminal. Same power, different ends.
PO Box 250, Oxford, OX1 1AP
+44 1865 243671


The Brighid / Bridget / Brigid / Bride Oracle - by Ceri Norman

ceri normanBrighid, the Ancient Celtic Goddess and Christian Saint, is closely associated with augury and divination, as well as the arts of healing, smithing and poetry. She was known by many epithets, including ‘Brighid of the Augury’ and ‘Prophetess of Christ’.  Her sacred flames and waters were used for divination, and still are today.

Within the oracle are practical instructions on how to conduct readings.  There are, for example, clear interpretations of the symbols, spreads that can be used, such as Brighid’s Cloak, and information on how to make and care for your own oracle set. There are 33 symbols which draw on the lore, legends and landscapes associated with Brighid; these include Brighid’s cross, Fire in the Forge, Kildare, Rowan and Swan. The oracle also includes a meditation to meet Brighid for yourself.

In this eBook Ceri Norman brings together information from a wide range of sources to explore the traditions, folklore and enduring legacy of Brighid, in a way that allows readers to utilise the information and work with Brighid for themselves.

The Brighid Oracle is easy enough to use straightaway; it requires no previous knowledge or experience and will, I hope, enrich the work of those drawn to work with Brighid, whatever your personal faith. 


©2013 copyright ~ All Rights Reserved Enlightening Times Magazine.

  • Enochian Chess and the publication of WB Yeats's Celtic sub-elemental boards by Steve Nichols

  • My personal history with Enochian Chess goes back quite a long way, to my teens in the 1970's when I was a keen tournament chess player (common variety) as well as a voracious reader of any occult literature I could find. After leaving university around 1980 (Philosophy, Psychology, AJ Ayer was one of my Profs) I embarked on my sometimes haphazard and individual career as an acupuncturist/ psychotherapist/ neural computing /brain research on the one hand, and as a Games consultancy, inventor and manufacturer on the other hand. Enochian Chess was launched in the early 1980's with collaboration from JH (Herbie) Brennan, Francis Regardie and with publicity from meeting with Prince Charles to demo the sets, the sets were published for the first time, 1982. More than 30 years have elapsed since then, but I am genuinely happy to present for the first time all of Yeats's sub-Elemental 'Celtic' Enochian Chessboards.

  • At this moment I don't want to say anything that might be a spoiler to the forthcoming book which covers the full historical background of these Celtic boards, plus instructions how to paint them for yourself. Suffice to say that my research has been helped in owning probably the bulk of Ithell Colquhoun's manuscripts concerning occult matters, plus some letters and correspondence. Many of these unique resources I published as "The Magical Writings of Ithell Colquhoun",

  • and I also programmed a PC version of Enochian Chess that very handily contains all the various Rules options and does all the divination work using my Connectionist AI patch.

  • As an antiquarian book dealer living in London I came across Golden Dawn manuscripts and rare items every now and then, and I purchased anything connected with Enochian Chess. The first edition Celtic boards follow some of Ithell's suggestions regarding Yeats's boards designs, which I have they suit the 'printed' format better. In 1980 I used to screen-print all the boards, these days I still love the printing process although it has modernised a great deal. Yeats's himself is sometimes a bit woolly on specifics of colour, whilst Ithel (a famous surrealist painter who wrote "Taro as Colour" along with other works and whose own taro cards are pure abstract colour and nothing else) is probably the greatest specialist in that field. Dee's Watchtowers and the 4 GD chessboards that represent them now supplemented by 16 Gates of the Cities of the Four Elements (or four Worlds of QBL), and if arrayed along compass lines will form an even larger and more vibrant 'protective space' or astral temple.

The Sacred Journey and Intuitive Guidance

by Lois J. Wetzel, MFA

" Awakened" Greetings CardSpirit guides us from pillar to post if we allow this. My own saga starts over twenty years ago, and includes a divorce as do so many. I had remained in the marriage far longer than I should have, and when I did finally divorce, I had become quite ill from the prolonged stress. I moved from Houston to Austin, Texas, where there are so many healing vortexes in the landscape around the lake there.

My intent was to heal myself of the stress-induced illness, and I did. A few years later, though, where my story picks up, I had learned how to even more carefully listen to my inner guidance. I had discovered the hard way that the mess always "hit the fan" if I did not follow the guidance I had learned to hear so clearly. For example, although my personality did not want to do massages—I sorely did not want to touch strangers' bodies, and besides, I already had two college degrees—yet still I enrolled in massage school right after my breakup. Why? Because my intuitive guidance was clear I was to do that. What did that look like? Every time I tried to find something in the yellow pages, the book would fall open to massage schools. Additionally, friends would tell me they heard I was going to massage school, though I had mentioned this to no one. So I followed guidance and signed up. I reasoned that this was something I could do to remain in control of my time and be at home when my young sons returned from school each day.

In doing the body work I experienced a soul-deep healing myself. My profound aversion to touching strangers' bodies pushed me into therapy where I remembered something that happened in childhood to create the aversion. I also learned that we get to decide how we react emotionally to events, that we are not required to go with our initial knee-jerk reactions. I learned as well the power of the stories we tell ourselves about the occurrences in our lives, and that we can reframe those stories, or look at them in a different light.

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