This blog came out of a desire to capture a recent group Meditation - for reference - and as an enticement for folks considering coming out to one. I wanted to flesh out the event topic "New Beginnings: Clearing, and Opening" - and I do that - but not without delving into a plethora of other relevant topics: the Concrete vs. the Ephemeral; the Medical vs. Metaphysical Model; having a mission vs. playing it by ear (Improvisation); and so much more...
Anatomy of a Meditation, what is Real? The Power of Metaphor (from Microcosm to Macrocosm)
I usually don't preplan ('to the T') my in-person Meditation events. I generate the concept for it about a month out, looking ahead at the calendar - inspired by the seasons - foraging for whatever ideas feel relevant to explore in the moment.
I recall whatever else might have been taught recently - what prospective attendees may be interested in - and in any case, try to push our studies to the next level. My own learning is included, as important, because I don't know everything (surprise, surprise).
As it gets closer, I start to pick out the appropriate stones, and begin formulating the progression of the usually 3 Meditations-within-the-Meditation that I do. By taking different 'side roads' during the course of our main journey, a broader level of awareness is reached. More ground is covered (and that's a good thing!). A single Meditation, with long silences, is not my style (though it certainly has its place).
As the main concept for each segment comes into focus, I make sure to leave the event open for intuitive 'light bulbs,' or last minute, in-the-moment inspirations about whatever else I might dream up, on the fly.
By taking this approach, I'm not being flighty or flaky - winging it - I'm just being aware of the need not to be rigid. I think it's important to go into a situation with a clear mission, and to welcome opportunities for expansion and evolution as they present themselves along the way.
For example, I have to be open to new stones I can bring in (even as the event is unfolding). That's why I keep my For Sale & Personal Session pieces close by. I won't think twice about leaving out stones I'd had originally picked for the occasion, even if it means they're sitting it out sadly 'in the box.'
Occasionally, I'm lucky enough to have an attendee take a bird's eye view of what's going on, and report in real time what's happening - as it's happening - from their own 'objective' viewpoint. Most recently, I was praised as a "master of metaphor," which felt great (and seemed appropriate, given my whole approach - which is becoming clearer - even as I write this). Indeed her statement can fairly be said to have been a prime impetus for this whole Blog post.
Symbols stir up our subconscious, delivering experiences we would otherwise ignore, not notice, and be unaware of. It's my job to 'go there,' for the sake of the community. As in any field - the full time practitioner should be relied upon to pioneer at the cutting edge - identifying new and different stones (in my case), and ascertaining how best to use them. When you buy a stone from me, or pay in to attend an event, you're contributing in your own way to that much larger responsibility I'm bearing.
I most definitely use stones as both metaphor and actual representatives for all kinds of key (and essential) energetic nuances. We stimulate the imagination with Crystals & Metaphor - make use of what's there, inside of us - and create new associations. It's kind of exciting...like a song being written as it's performed!
I hope you can see that in describing how I go about 'building' an event, that my most recent Meditation topic "New Beginnings: Clearing & Opening" is being addressed (albeit circuitously). As some say: "how you do anything is how you do everything." And yet - how it feels live - during an in-person event of mine - is totally different from how I present a webinar, or write my Blogs. That's the beauty of working with me in a few different capacities. Each medium has its unique offerings, appeal, and gift.
In writing, I'm much more self-conscious, I'm not channeling - or 'streaming' - as I do in other situations. I revisit my words many times - blogs can take weeks to complete - I'm ever fine-tuning and developing them. I'm up to 15 revisions here, and counting...
So my blogs are more for the readers amongst you, perhaps even 'the intellectual.' And yet I'm not much of a reader myself. I do lots of editing beyond this, but the real challenge is getting it all out. For whatever reason, I have a lot to say - to share - and feel like in doing so, some pretty substantial light is being shed on this field of Crystal Healing.
Once I press Publish, though, I'm confident that my writing covers the ground needed (and I imagine it being a chapter in some future book). So I apologize if these tomes seem long - some have suggested I write shorter pieces more often - but it takes awhile for these statements to percolate. If folks want pithier expressions, they can check out my Twitter and Facebook pages (that's what they're for).
I'm certainly not as left brained as I sometimes think I am. I'm not, after all, a statistician or accountant. I infuse my efforts with an artistic sensibility. Intention and focus are are definitely hosting my events - but inspiration, flexibility, and adaptability crash the party every time - that's what makes it fun & interesting!
So we've 'established' that working with Crystals is all about Metaphor. And Language as well, by extension . They each represent something about our Consciousness (The Ethers) and Physicality (being themselves, quite tangible). This enables us to use and experience Crystals in ways that illustrate, bring out, and underscore our own important 'inner workings' - which ultimately manifest in in 'the real world' - and vice versa! This takes on a very personal and uniquely individual dynamic for each of us.
In different words, what I'm saying is that Crystals "are the thing" (meaning, they embody or contain within them certain energies, intrinsically) - but they are also "about the thing" (ie. representing of a concept, or vibration).
Take for example Rose Quartz. It's said (by me) to bear the essence of Unconditional Love. I just noticed someone else saying that on Pinterest ("Love" I've heard before, but not my wording: "Unconditional Love," until now). I'm glad to say that it feels like my framework for understanding Crystals is getting out there (little by little).
But can that possibly true? Can a rock be all that? I argue (elsewhere) that the Crystal Lore has gone overboard with making impossible (or excessive) associations. And yet, I'm all in favor of making leaps of faith. I believe that once you make an association (between object and and outcome, or meaning) - and it resonates for you, then YES - a rock can be all that. The keys are resonance - complementarity - a sort of call and response between you and the Crystals.
The sign of the swastika has come to carry and mean a whole lot more than a few lines scrawled on a wall (every picnic table at a campground I went to this Summer, had them carved in centrally). In its case, hatefulness overshadows its original import, as a mystical symbol from India.
Oppositely, "Beauty is in the eye of the beholder." When you love someone, you can easily disregard their foibles...the warm glow of your rose tinted glasses gives the object of your desire an elevated standing...in almost everything they do.
My point? That 'objective reality' is often neither. And people who claim it's all there is are deluding themselves.
Entire societies function on a vast web of presuppositions and assumptions that shape our every move. What makes some consider Terrorism a perfectly logical course of action tells you something about their surrounding ethos, and circumstance. Likewise, the confluence of beliefs and prejudices prevailing in 2003 led the U.S. to invade Iraq under completely false pretenses.
Going further back - slavery was once considered an indispensable part of the economy - just as energy waste and global warming are considered acceptable side effects of modern life. It didn't have to be that way, it doesn't have to be this way. Our spiritual practice should enable us to increasingly think outside the box...how it could and should be, are items seriously worth considering...on the regular!
Who's right and who's wrong - that's not for me to say in this context - but I bring up these points to illustrate how powerful and significant ideation (ideology), accepted world views, and yes: Imagination can be.
Ultimately, you believe in what you believe in - and that carries all the weight it needs to - to 'get the job done.' It's what can lead us to start wars, stay in a marriage, keep going in to work every day - even hate - or love ourselves. It can hold such sway in superstitious societies -that a hex can kill you - if you let it (or believe it will).
We live in a world defined in large part by mental constructs. Let me say this again: there is no 'objective' reality to be had. Perhaps 'things' - material objects - all that we can point to as being real, are truly real? But how much more important is what they mean to us! A flag, a rock, a bus stop - each is not merely an object to us - each immediately initiates a cascade of associations. Meaning is everything.
The relationship between things and concepts is much much more fluid (both loose and close) in our world than we give it credit for. There's so much more gray than black and white. I say this over and over again - especially to people who look to me for a quick health fix - as they say on Facebook, about relationships - "it's complicated!"
Disease doesn't just pop up out of a box. You can't just stuff it all back in - or get rid of it like that. One thing Modern Medicine has done, is to give people that illusion...that they can be "fixed" - like cars. And one of the greatest pieces of misinformation about Crystals, is that they can "do this" and "do that," performing similar, instant cures.
Crystals are not our minions, doing our bidding, like slaves. That gives them no credit or dignity, and gives the challenges facing us zero standing, in their own right. Fixing a human being is a lot more sophisticated, and ought to be handled on multiple levels, that no quick fix can ever hope to deliver. You can't simply change out a light bulb and make everything okay.
How is it that Religions can so easily buy people's loyalty by relaying miracles? Are we such simpletons? Would it not be better to preach the old adage: "pray, but move your feet." Yes to the magic of inspiration, and Yes ALSO to the power of action!
Returning to my color metaphor, look even at the shades of Red. You can say "that's red" - and on the surface of it - we'll know what you mean. But the Artist in you knows how many variations (or shades) there really are on the theme. There's a pale, almost pink tone; dark burgundy, like a wine; fire engine red...the list goes on. Likewise, there are gradations - quantitative (not just qualitative) delineations - between The Real and The Imagined.
A Fantasy can turn into a motion picture, from which are created memories. Images and Messages ('the moral of the story') can change lives, both during - and beyond - the experience of watching a film. Everything partakes of (and contributes to) Reality - from the dryest of rational views - to the wildest drug-induced hallucinations.
Indeed the most brilliant scientists will tell you that the more they learn, the more they realize they don't know. Each perspective has meaning and value, regardless of how 'tangible' it is. And when we die, everything disappears (even though many of us think of the Soul as living on).
This is why I laugh when I hear the notion that Energy Medicine is irrelevant, and that 'Traditional' Medicine is all that matters. Never mind the fact that (by true definition) 'Traditional Medicine' - which would be 'that which precedes Modern Medicine' - was often about the energetics of a person's condition. Herbalism, Acupuncture, Chinese Medicine - all these are truly traditional medicines - that take this approach (thinking about our functioning holistically), and they're all still in use today (as they were a thousand years ago).
What I'm saying is that the opposition between Allopathic and Metaphysical medicine is something I think of as made up - it's artificial, imposed - and not helpful. Though I suppose, for folks those whose imagination is limited, it works out just fine - to see just one way to legitimately help folks.
"Only a doctor can cure you!" they say. "Yeah, yeah" I say. How many ailments leave doctors befuddled!?
At the same time, it cuts both ways - Alternative Health nuts can fail to see the very real benefits of going to the doctor - and that doing so certainly has merit.
For example, I know someone (who knows someone) who's dying from Cancer. The patient refused to work with today's conventional medical establishment, or to accept the many interventions it has to offer...and now she is paying the price (by dying prematurely).
A lot of suffering can be avoided by taking advantage of what's been scientifically proven to help people.
Science, Medicine, and Energy Healing are all good!
Whatever the source of Healing, I say "Let it begin - it's all G8D's gift - receive it and LIVE!" Heck, I had Cancer twice - and was saved by surgery - which helped me live to tell the tale. To be fair - and to take some credit as well - I also changed my attitude and my diet (which were no mean feats), resulting in a life extension of decades.
The choices I made - the shifts in worldview that happened (about myself and everything around me) - all prepared the way for my pursuit of Crystal Consciousness. And then I had a major revelatory experience, but that wasn't everything. People cheat themselves when they think of the universe as either mundane or sublime. It's both, to be sure!
Remember, if you can, the story about the guy who drowned - reaches Heaven - and berates G8D for not saving him (with a miracle). Miracles are overrated! G8D respondes (and I paraphrase): "You're wrong to think I wasn't trying to save you - I sent you a life preserver, I sent you a boat, I sent you a helicopter - how many more tools, or 'signs' could I have offered?!" G8D does not only work in mysterious ways. Sometimes, Salvation can be quite simple, straightforward and practical.
But I digress, not to put you off - Pagans and Atheists - with my mention of Deity. I actually think our world views are more similar than we might admit. I'm no holy roller, and I certainly don't believe that there's only one way of understanding Reality. That's a revolutionary statement, in a rigid, doctrinaire world.
One has only to look at Politics - especially during an election year - to see how violently people hold to their beliefs and convictions. Can they all be right? Or does nobody have it all figured out?
Indeed, there's no monolithic Reality to be had ...except, perhaps...for the Totality of Multiplicity (which is some people's view - including my own - of G8D).
"Universal Energies" is another way to refer to an All-Inclusive Reality, within which everything is subjective - except, perhaps, the collective summation of all realities - which we cannot grasp or comprehend - as mere mortals.
The 'exception' perhaps, in identifying 'what is real,' might be those certain things we cannot all of us deny - like a Tsunami, Death, and taxes...oh well...I guess even those we try to bargain with & negotiate around, wherever possible.
Let's get back to my Meditation - OUR meditation, really - because the shape and contour of each event, while set in broad strokes by me (and shepherded through, by my own Guidance), takes on new directional subtleties when each individual present Shares what's happening for them - what the given "journey" has brought up inside of them - and how they've been impacted by the whole process. What everybody has to say is an important contribution to the overall experience.
We're always (pleasantly) surprised by how unexpected (and welcome) others' feelings become. That is one of the key benefits of being in a safe and healing environment. People expose their vulnerabilities - places where they feel hurt or alone - and without suffocating, others 'come running.'
It's heartwarming how willing - and quick - people can be to offer succor (in the right circumstances).
Indeed, I think it's harder to embark on new beginnings without reaching, or starting from this place of relative Soul comfort. It's not impossible - just harder - and it happens all the time, regardless. But in the context of a 'controlled' environment - a small group of like minded people gathered, with good intention - that definitely 'provides the space' for people to get in touch with their (and THE) Spirit.
Two other key factors contributing to our experience in these Meditations, are of course the world-class Power Stones brought into play (which, unlike museum pieces, are meant to be held and used) - as well as my own knowledge base regarding the many varieties and uses for Crystals. My understanding regarding the dynamics of human learning & experience, also comes in quite handy.
In order to begin again, or start over - even take any step into the future - I think it helps to make some kind of peace with uncertainty...the unknown...and the unknowable. Some shamanic practitioners speak with certainty about outcomes, or diagnoses, as if they know without a doubt. And that's lovely, for them (and their clients?) - confidence and clairvoyance are wonderful attributes - but I question their infallibility, and take a more humble approach.
Here, my deistic perspective comes in again. Give G8D his or her due. Honor G8D's role and authority in being 'the ultimate decider.'
I do not imbue any one stone or type of stone with G8D-Essence, Knowing, or the capacity for Arbitration (that is to say, intercession on our behalf). That, to me, would be idolatry.
We do not pray to the stones, we pray with them. They are not our "little friends" - nor are they generally (although they sometimes can be, in the case of Entity Stones) - possessed with little anthropomorphic "fairy spirits." That's one of the several bones I have to pick with the existing Crystal Lore, but it's not in itself worthy of further discussion at this point.
What is important - at first - is that we acknowledge, and coexist with Uncertainty, which can be attempted by interacting with Girasol, or what I call "Foggy" Quartz. It is neither clear, nor Rose Quartz...it is its own variety . It is ideally not completely see through - though it is often gemmy (or glassy inside) - and milky/opaque. By sitting with it, and following a progression of guided Meditation, we were able to lighten the load of pressure we feel to 'have it all figured out.' The hidden benefit here, is that by loosening the grip of expectation - we can be open to G8D's intercession - and our own inspiration.
Next, and this was our second Meditation - we explored clearing - with a great big Amethyst cluster. As discussed in my "Amethyst & the Purple Sages of the Higher Spirit" webinar, Amethyst clusters (as opposed to points) have the special capacity to cleanse us, spiritually. So we imagined the whole piece (about 2' long) bubbling with a lavender mist - filling and permeating our being (like Sage smoke) - and flushing out unwanted energies from its furthest recesses.
To further effect the outcome of clearing (and cleansing) - we each used (and shared) a few naturally smoothed basalt shards - passing them over our entire aura (while seated) to protect and restore our periphery and core .
It had been discussed that it was hard to Open without Clearing - because of the fear of letting in unwanted energies - or destabilizing one's system. That is part of why grounding stones were placed between each person, alternating Tiger Iron and Ruby. By clearing, centering, and grounding first, it becomes possible to open up more successfully.
Finally, in our 3rd Meditation, a 'constellation' was brought into play. My goal is to have people experience themselves first; then add stones to the mix, to further their own Spiritual pursuit; and to finally create a collective, galactically connected layout that aligns our individual experience with that the Universe. That's what I mean by Microcosm to Macrocosm.
I make my layouts simple - I don't call them 'grids' because that seems limiting - almost like using a stencil to make a drawing, or connecting oneself to 'the grid' - when this whole energetic exercise is designed to take us out of, or give us relief from the societal grid - and to connect us to something bigger.
I generally don't allow attendees to take photos at our gatherings, because I have some proprietary interest in keeping what we do private. At the same time, pictures do make things a lot clearer, and I've been describing this Meditation thus far by only showing examples of the stones I'm discussing.
The bamboo sticks are neutral place holders, but they do create space, and in this case both an emanation from the center, and an evocation of a galactic swirl (because of the angles at which they come in, or burst forth from the center).
I also use just the minimum to achieve the desired effect. A lot of layouts I've seen are over the top - too much going on - a cacophony of energies. I think they're more attractive as artworks than as functioning 'constellations.'
In the center is the amalgamated Quartz DT cluster, representing the new possibilities we face at the Gateway of the Future...things we want to see come into being, or that will become manifest regardless, going forward. It behooves us to 'get next to' these potentialities, even advance of their appearance, so that our Soul may attune to them and thrive in their company.
Then come a ring of geometrically cut Obsidian pieces - which invoke the power and expanse of open space - the 'Black Before Creation' (also of night, Outer Space, and potentiality).
And lastly - what people held in their hands (one in each) - were Blue Lace Agate (self forgiveness and self expression), and Jet...a personal openness and safety stone, different from Obsidian...because it's more "right here" than "out there."
Thus completed our exploration of "New Beginnings: Clearing & Opening." I realize that this verbal explanation - even enhanced by photos - cannot do it justice. And everybody's input is not transcribed here.
However, I did get a memorable testimonial - which will show you, in someone else's voice - what it was like:
"Last week I attended my first Crystal Meditation group meeting, New Beginnings: Opening & Clearing. Going to the event I was certain of two things: there would be crystals and guided meditations. I was not aware of the intensity I would experience as the evening progressed. I was first taken aback by a room full of crystals. Some of the most beautiful, colorful, expensive stones I have ever experienced in my life. Just standing in the room I began vibrating. There was a chatty meet and greet time provided so the attendees could connect and re-connect. Then the Circle was gathered. Kyle led us through three meditations during the 2 hour meeting; each accompanied by crystals and stones appropriate for the intended visualization. I found myself easily falling into a distant meditative state. By the last meditation I felt a definite shift in my being: I had received messages and felt very different in my body compared to when I walked in off the street. Kyle provides a wonderful calm space free from distraction, enlivened with the vibration (songs) of a diverse rich collection of gem stones and crystals. Kyle is a Crystalline Being in flesh."
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