Centering Energy

I recently went through a bit of a transformation. I was troubled by an extreme emotional disturbance and I had no clue where it was coming from. I went through a long list of things but remembered one important lesson: the solutions to our problems are always right in front of us. We just have to open up to see them.

I remembered a call from a couple days ago; my 89 year old grandmother had just started practicing tai chi! This reminded me of the chi focusing exercises I had practiced in the past and I began trying them out again.

To my surprise the emotional disturbance began to go away. I had been in a state of constant anxiety and agitation because my energy was in a hundred places at once. Calling it back home has been amazing. I began to feel in my body again, my mind became calm and I felt centered. I still am, and have been practicing this for the past 4 hours or so.

The point is that there are solutions. I thought that it might take me months to figure this out. I had called my  doctor, I had consulted with other people but the solution, I already had! It was amazing and it still is.

Have you had an experience similar to this or any thoughts on emotions and spiritual energy? I would love to hear them. Thanks!

Liquid Breakfast: Being Sick Is Awesome!

This morning I had all of my favorite beverages for breakfast. A couple cups of coffee, a bottle of Perrier, some fresh juice and a vegetable protein shake. My goal in life, as far as breakfast is concerned is to live like this all of the time.

The one thing lacking was a martini, but then again I don’t drink so that doesn’t count. The lightness of beverages that also fuel me with the energy, minerals and proteins to keep me going, make life better in every imaginable way.

On top of this, I was done with my day’s work before 7am. I don’t think that this is a coincidence. The power of the beverage gives me the power to get work done. It took me being sick to accumulate all of my favorite drinks.

What do you do you have for your favorite breakfast? What keeps you going through the day ideally? For me it’s all liquid but some people swear by oatmeal, or meat and eggs. If this seems silly it’s because it is. I just have to express gratitude for finally having all of my favorite beverages for breakfast.


Science and Mysticism

There are two parts of my mind. One is devoted to searching for understanding through spirituality, the unexplainable and the mysteries of our existence. The other Loves finding truth that is revealed through science and systematic research of the observable world.

These two ways of viewing the world aren’t at odds with one another if I respect that they are two very different ways of examining our existence. The desire to connect the two and create some cohesive theory is tempting but it usually results in nonsense that doesn’t do either type of study justice.

To paraphrase one spiritual author “can’t we just leave quantum physics alone?” I’m happy with the law of attraction, just as I’m happy with the law of gravity. We don’t need to make connections where they do not exist but what is difficult is having many lenses through which to view the world and holding space for their contradictions to arise. These uncomfortable contradictions that arise in our awareness are just part of the process of searching for truth.

I recently began some shamanic healing and the next day I came down with a cold. It wasn’t surprising. Deep energy work often coincides with me getting a cold. I spoke to my friend who is helping me through this, she called to ask how I was feeling-because she knew that people often go through this. While I’m curious as to why this happens, I understand the idea of purging the soul and that manifesting in a purging of the body, but I don’t think that very much would come of me making a formal scientific inquiry into the correlation between energy work and getting a cold. It just wouldn’t get us that far.

Similarly I think that we have to resist the urge to use every new scientific discovery to legitimize our spiritual beliefs. Yes, there was a big bang, and are many dimensions, but do we really have to use this to prove that a higher being or spiritual planes exist? I don’t think so. I think that belief is enough and an age old endeavour to better understand our existence can take many forms but we don’t have to tie them all together. The whole point is that there are so many different ways to view our lives, to view our souls and to view the world we live in that we are cutting ourselves short to pretend that any one  of  these viewpoints can see everything, or that we need to create a unified theory that ties together all of the lenses that we like.

How do you feel about the many ways we view the world? What do you choose? Do you agree or disagree with what I have to say? I would love to hear more.

Finally I want to explain the lack of pictures in my blog posts. I don’t want to scare anyone off by having lengthy essays but I think that long form writing is essential and while I could plaster each posts with pictures I prefer the simplicity of unadulterated written word.

Lots of love!

  • Ammanuel


Skeptically Healing with Shamanism

I recently had an appointment with my masseuse/personal yoga teacher. Yeah, I’m a really lucky guy. It turns out that she’s also a shaman and in my most recent session she uh…shammaned me. blog shamaism

I have had this feeling of intense anger and uncontrollable emotions, ones that were not affected by years of therapy or medication. However, I have consistently been able to fix everything that was wrong in my life up until this point. The day before I met with my magical shamanistic yoga teacher I told my therapist “by tomorrow I’ll know exactly what is going on and how to fix it.: I had no idea how right I would be.

I asked my yoga shaman for massage and energy healing. However, asking a yoga teacher for a massage results in a serious of postures in which one gets massaged instead of the normal stationary position that we’re used to.

After the postures came the real massage. I laid down, muscles relaxed and fell asleep. When I awoke I felt significantly lighter, like a weight had been lifted. My therapist told me that I had some things removed from me in the spiritual realm. One was, and I quote:”the scariest thing [she] had ever encountered doing energy work. Apparently a conscious being was residing inside of my energy field and she did her best to get it out but would have to spend a couple more sessions getting it out. Skeptical? So was I… but here is a bit of background.

Years ago I began to go through a life crisis. I felt as if a being was possessing me and I couldn’t get it out. Everyone told me that I was going crazy, but of this I was sure. I eventually accepted that it was all in my mind but in my mind’s eye I had this distinct image of a dark snake like object inhabiting the entire left side of my body. Over the years this bothered me to no end…I could almost feel it moving around. Now, I have been cleared as a lucid sane human being but this feeling still remained. It was only after all of the other symptoms had disappeared (depression, mania, etc.) that I realized something was wrong. I thought that it was a medication issue so I changed that but nothing happened.

Luckily I had an appointment with this woman. She told me that she was removing a snake like conscious entity from me…which is just unpleasant and nerve wracking. I immediately put it in terms that I could understand that this was just a way of interpreting trauma, or pain but ultimately it didn’t matter.

The treatment worked! The next day I left my house feeling as if the whole universe loved me. My social anxiety calmed down and I understood that there is a life force in everything that is inherently loving, even this thing that may or may not be in my body. From the ground, from the sky…from the cars! I just felt this emanating out of everything. It made me extremely happy. Life was returning to the way it felt before I started having these “hallucinations”…

I remember the time that the world seemed to be bursting with love and I walked through this gracefully everything seemed to just fall into place, I loved others, they loved me, I was never afraid of dark snakes coming out of people which is what happened after that initial…thing (metaphorically?) attached itself to me.

I’m clearly still struggling through all of this but it took years for my mind to become clear enough to acknowledge what was happening and as soon as I did there was a healing persona already in place.

I am going to go through a few more sessions. Normally I would be skeptical and think that this is a person trying to siphon money from me but not only have I known her for years, and learned to trust her character and integrity but I have seen the results. A weight has already been lifted and I’m returning not only to health but to enjoying life and appreciating the spirit of life more than ever.

What about you? Have you had similar experiences either from a skeptical perspective or one of transformation? How have alternative healing or shamanism/energy work affected your life? Even if you don’t believe in any of it but are curious I encourage you to leave a comment.









Stop competing at me! How to deal with the jealousy of others.

We’ve all had people who compete at us in life but success is a shared event; there’s more than enough to go around. Unfortunately, not all people have realized this and thus try to “take” success from others by competing at them.

When two people who are yet to understand this get together they usually engage in completive behavior. Be it over romance, friendships or status it is ridiculous and draining. But we do not have to participate. We can simply allow the other person to be, and go on living our lives.

In my experience, I keep in mind that the other person is working through their own issues of insecurities or self-hatred and project who they want to be onto me or someone else and then feel like they have to pull me down to their level or somehow become better than me.

What’s going on in the minds of other people is unimportant save for our ability to have compassion patience and clear boundaries with them. We have to understand that others are in pain so that we don’t lash out and engage in this dramatic interaction. We have to retain our ability to love or dismiss people in a way that creates peace with us and we have to tell them to stop when we need to protect ourselves.

The beautiful thing about responding to those who compete at us is that, in my experience, after a long time, they inevitably want to befriend me. They often emerge into self-awareness, apologize and sometimes have deeply changed into loving warm human beings. I often (not always) invite them back into my life. Some of the deepest relationship have been created this way.


Peace from Pain

We all experience pain in our lifetime. Be it emotional, existential or physical, pain seems to scream “avoid me at all costs!” If we manage to quiet this voice the next thought is “heal this pain immediately!” Both will send us running around like the proverbial decapitated chicken. I suggest that we do something else entirely.

Instead of running from pain or running towards it full-throttle we have to first get ourselves centered or else we run into the possibility of hurting ourselves further. Emotionally we can do this by avoiding our pain with relationships and substances, or drive ourselves nuts examining or becoming flooded with the pain that we are in. Physically we can try to numb ourselves or work too hard, ending up with an injury.

I’ve done all of the above. While it’s important to feel and heal from the pains in our lives, bodies and hearts, we have to keep our heads on our shoulders (or else we’ll end up like the aforementioned chicken).

Making peace with the pain we have is the most important and difficult part of healing from it. It is how we retain balance while healing, a process that takes time and effort. It is the only way we can retain control. Overworking or running from something are both ways that we try to establish control but neither work. How do we do this?

I’ve found peace with pain through meditation and introspection. It’s an active observation of my pains, I do not identify them and if I do, I remind myself of what I’m experiencing and that it is not all that I am. First though, I have to be able to name what I am experiencing. This is the first step into acceptance.

What are you feeling? Is it a pain in your shoulder or an old emotional wound surfacing? I assure you that emotions can be traced to feelings in the body and pains in the body will be causing emotions that you may or may not be aware of. Write them down. Take the time to notice how these sensations travel from one place to another.

As we traverse the maze of feedback loops-physical pain affecting emotions, emotional sensations affecting our bodies and of course, our thoughts affecting both, we can gain a certain mastery and understanding of ourselves with our awareness being the centering force that keeps us balanced and on course to our desired goal.

Nothing in this life is too difficult to navigate with the proper awareness and practices. Pain is one of them. This awareness combined with support from others, we can reach our goals in a balanced, patient and peaceful manner.


The secret to happiness is day drinking

Alcoholism taught me how to be a more playful and loving human being through hedonism and immaturity. Bear with me. I’ll elaborate.

This morning I woke up, made some coffee, did some crunches then began laughing uncontrollably. I remembered something I had forgotten long ago: Alcoholism was awesome!

If you’ve never had the pleasure of drinking for 48 hours straight, leaving a path of destruction, tears and laughter, then you simply haven’t lived. But what was so great about this? How have we lost it? How do we retain that sense of freedom and joy while becoming responsible adults?

I hear again and again in recovery meetings just how great it is to be able to wake up without a hangover and treating themselves with dignity and respect but I think that people forget as we age just how amazing it is to be young and stupid. Simply not caring about other people’s feelings and being a total jerk to the world around you is actually liberating. You just have to get numb enough to do so.

It’s all about embracing that part of your “inner child” that everyone hates: the brat. When we’re drunk and bored we try to find out just how much fun we can have getting kicked out of the bar or slapped by a perfect stranger. The fun never ends! The real trick is integrating that into a world that contains more people than just you. Totally possible. Totally awesome.

I’m often told that I’m “charismatic” or “good with people” the secret is, I honestly don’t care about what other people think about me. I am engaging with others, a solid eighty percent of the time for my own amusement. This joy is contagious. I can get away with murder this way.

The other twenty percent of the time I allow myself to be sincere authentic, loving and compassionate It’s a wonderful thing to be able to be there for friends in pain, or to make a stranger’s day just because. But someone who does this all day is a total bore, as is someone who is aloof, unable to be sincere vulnerable or authentic.

We can have our cake and eat it too. We can be playful, perhaps self-absorbed while engaging with others with integrity and love. I think it’s our responsibility to ourselves and others to do so.

The best part of this is that people incapable of having fun in life are terrified of others. Love and laughter are kryptonite to the pathologically miserable and a magnet to those who intentionally practice the art of a well-balanced life.

I’m not suggesting that people in pain are inherently bad, hell, I am all of the time. But the difference between a mood and a personality is that one results from what has happened to us the other is what we choose to create for ourselves. But that is a post for another time.

Have fun today, day drinking or not!