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Entering the Divine World of Spirit

From "Ask Your Guides"

by Sonia Choquette

Once you activate the awareness of your spirit, the next step in connecting with your guides is to become conscious of, and sensitive to, the spiritual energy in the people and living things around you. After all, quantum physics tells us that beyond all appearances, everything in the Universe is composed of pure consciousness vibrating at various frequencies—physical things only appear to be solid and separate when, in fact, they’re simply energy that is moving so quickly that an illusion of solidity is created.

Many years ago when I was apprenticing in the psychic and healing arts, my teacher and mentor Dr. Trenton Tully told me that physical qualities are the least accurate source of information, and they should never be relied upon exclusively to draw conclusions or make decisions. This advice helped me open my eyes to see what is real and true, and aided me in pulling back the veil between the physical and nonphysical worlds.

The spirit world vibrates at an entirely different level than the physical world—it can’t be registered by the eye, but is rather felt and experienced by the mind when you start to exercise your awareness and pay close attention. In order to tune in to these vibrations, start by acknowledging the unique energies surrounding you. It may seem strange to do this at first, but with a little imagination and concentration, it will become surprisingly easy. Begin with the people closest to you, such as those you live or work with every day, and attempt to feel and describe their spirit, taking note of any differences you can identify that distinguish one individual from another.

In order to connect with the energy of those around you, simply close your eyes and let your attention slip from your mind into your heart. (Those of you who are natural empaths will immediately know what I’m talking about because chances are you already tune in naturally to the vibrations of life around you, although you may not have fully perceived them as spirit yet.) Next, focus on a specific individual and let yourself feel their unique vibration—including that of their spirit guides. Describe what you feel, preferably out loud, since the more you express vocally, the more amplified your awareness will become.

For example, I would describe my daughter Sonia’s spirit as gentle and sensitive. She can be resistant to change, which causes her to be fixed, naturally grounded, and solid. Her soul is strong, committed, and calm, although it can become ferocious if circumstances dictate that it’s necessary. My familiarity with her spirit allows me to recognize her unique vibration anywhere I go.

I was once browsing in a department store when I felt my daughter nearby—even though I knew she was spending the weekend with a girlfriend and had no plans to be at the mall. My sense of her was so strong that I turned around to see if she was behind me. Not finding her there, I continued to shop until five minutes later, when I heard her voice. I turned and there she was—her girlfriend’s mother had brought them to the mall to see a movie, and they’d decided to walk through the store to kill time until the show started. Just as I’d sensed her presence, her familiarity with my spirit signaled to her that I was nearby as well.

Feeling the spirits of others and of the larger world around us enables us to aspire to new levels of positive experience. My client Harriet, for instance, once told me that it never occurred to her to think of herself as spirit, yet the idea intrigued her as it promised to bring color and excitement to her dreary existence. Although she was initially tentative, she took my advice and began to try to see more than what used to meet her eye.

Harriet was 67 years old, had been single for more than 30 years (thanks to a bad marriage), and was working part-time as a secretary for an insurance broker. She felt very limited and cut off from life and wanted to identify the changes that needed to be made to create more excitement and satisfaction in her life. She first observed that her boss’s spirit felt dull and heavy, and that his depressed energy infected her. On the other hand, she felt that the spirit of a neighbor who lived in her building was open, light-hearted, and extremely bright—something she hadn’t noticed in the three years she’d known him.

Harriet’s attraction to her neighbor’s positive energy inspired her to make conversation, to which he readily responded. After several lively exchanges—including one where she indicated what a delightful spirit he had—her neighbor invited her to join the bridge club that met in his apartment twice a month. It was there that she met and was hired by a dentist who needed a new receptionist to run his large downtown office. When asked what compelled him to hire her, the dentist confessed that he liked her spirit!

By simply sensing the true energy of others, Harriet had new friends and a new job within two months. By raising her awareness, first of her own spirit, and then of others, she gravitated to a wonderfully supportive situation that brought the positive changes she was looking for.

I’ve taught classes where I’ve asked students to describe others’ spirits, and their initial reaction was to freeze up. That’s normal if the "wide world of spirit" is new to you, so relax and see this as an exciting adventure and not a metaphysical test. The funny thing is that even if your head fails you, with a little nudging, your heart (which, you’ll recall, is the seat of your spirit) will speak up and register energy and vibration that you’d normally be in the habit of ignoring.

Claire, a student practicing this exercise described the spirit of her "very conservative" elder co-worker as surprising and sexy—only to discover that underneath her colleague’s tight-buttoned suit lurked a woman who’d been flamenco dancing on weekends for years.

"Who knew?" Claire laughed. "I would never have guessed, judging by her appearance!" In connecting with the spirit of her otherwise unassuming and quiet co-worker, my student was able to enjoy one of the primary benefits of the wide world of spirit: She allowed her spirit to join with the other kindred spirits around her who enrich her life—and even get her to go flamenco dancing from time to time!

Did You Know That . . .

. . . the best part of learning to see the spirit in all things is that it makes your world come alive and makes your heart and imagination kick into full-time creativity? Seeing the world through the eyes of spirit, you also begin to see the hidden connections, opportunities, and support that are available right before your eyes. With such receptivity, it’s only another small leap to connect to nonphysical planes and your own spirit guides.

Another method of broadening your perception is to distinguish the distinct energies of your pets. Can you feel and identify the spirit of your dog, cat, or even your fish? I know, for example, that the spirit of my poodle, Miss T, is very sensitive, humorous, and quite proud. She becomes unhappy when she looks scraggly and is in need of a haircut, and is delighted when she leaves the groomer after a fresh shampoo and trim. On the other hand, my neighbor’s dog, Emily, has a far less particular spirit than Miss T—in fact, she could care less about grooming, is quite adventurous, and is ready to run and play at any moment. Her spirit is silly, curious, and far more confident than that of my poodle.

In the 20 years that I’ve been asking people about their pet’s spirit, I’ve never encountered a person who couldn’t describe it quite accurately—much more accurately, in fact, than the spirits of many of the people in their lives. Perhaps it’s because pets are so loving and accepting of our souls that we become aware of and sensitive to theirs as well.

Now try to stretch your awareness even further and see if you can sense the spirit in your houseplants and garden flora. Do you notice any difference between the spirit of a healthy plant and that of one that’s dying, of an orchid versus a lily, or a potted plant as opposed to one that grows freely? Your mind may reject these attempts as silly, but rest assured that you aren’t making things up when you pay attention to the spirit level of any and all things.

With a little attention and practice, all of your senses can be trained to access the spirit world’s subtle planes of energy, allowing you to enjoy every aspect of your life in new ways. I remember, for example, taking a music-appreciation course in college and having an incredible breakthrough in my awareness after a few short weeks. I’d always loved listening to music, but the instruments had generally blurred together in a solid mass of sound and rhythm. But as the course directed my attention to the subtleties of what was being played, I began to identify separate instruments and rhythms, thus making my enjoyment of the compositions infinitely deeper and more rewarding.

The same thing happened when I took a French-cooking class. I’ve always loved French cuisine, especially the delicious sauces it’s famous for, but until the course I could never distinguish the nuances of the spices and the savory ingredients that made them so fabulous. Suddenly, I acquired a whole new level of appreciation and awareness of the distinct flavors in the food, transforming my French-food indulgences into a more discerning and satisfying experience. My new awareness no longer made it possible for me to wolf down just anything without paying attention to its energy and vibration.

You can obtain similar results by training yourself to identify the energies all around you and by sensing the vibrations with your heart. With effort and attention, you can feel the following: the delicate sweetness of a baby, instead of just seeing her dirty face; the hearty enthusiasm of a young German shepherd, instead of just hearing its growl; and the solid stoicism of an oak tree, instead of just seeing its looming form. At first it may feel as if you’re fishing in unfamiliar waters, but eventually tuning in to the spirit of the world around you will become second nature. Like the cooking or music-appreciation courses I took, it will make you much more in sync with your surroundings.

Your Turn

Start noticing the spirit of everyone and everything around you, and see if you can articulate how their spirit energy feels.

If you’re the type of person who tends to get stuck in your head and disconnected from your feeling center, this may feel a little awkward at first, so start by describing others’ spirits in simple terms such as "light," "heavy," "quick," "steady," "bright," or "dull." Let your heart express itself as your imagination guides the experience, and don’t censor your impressions. The trick here is to bypass your brain and let your feelings bubble up directly from your heart to your mouth. You may even speak words that you don’t consciously register.

The above excerpt is taken from the new book Ask Your Guide, Connecting to Your Divine Support System, by Sonia Choquette. It is published by Hay House (May 2006) and available at all stores or online at www.hayhouse.com

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