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Posts Tagged ‘emotions’

EMOTIONAL BURDENS ARE A MAJOR CAUSE OF BACK PROBLEMS

“The object of anxiety is within ourselves. When we fail to consciously recognize our Natural and Sacred Anxiety they reappear wearing bizarre disguises and we fight these phantoms, monsters of our own creation. Yet we usually have no idea that we have done this; our habits of suppression have become so automatic that we are no longer aware of them. Thus we have the strange sensation that we are fighting ourselves, and when we are feeling from our self, there is no-where to run and nowhere to hide” Finding Serenity in the Age of Anxiety ~ Robert Gerzon

Your  body is a graphic expression of everything it has ever experienced; every event, every emotion and every stress and pain is locked within its bodily system.  Alternative healers and therapists have learned through years of experience to interpret the body’s visual clues that reveal a person’s pattern of feeling, thinking and acting; using this knowledge helps to  release tensions embedded as ‘residue of symptoms’ in our cells.

Most people don’t realize that within our bodies is a freely circulating giant plumbing system (lymphatic system) that continuously flows up to 10-15 litres of essential fluids at any one time. In healthy undamaged tissue, food is brought into muscles and waste is taken out through this process. In damaged tightened tissue however, contracted areas literally can’t release their waste, almost like a constipation effect, which blocks the exit of waste products.  As these waste products accumulate, nerves that are located in the muscle become irritated. These nerves then send pain signals to the brain, causing both physical and emotional discomfort. Overtime, the tightening of muscle fibres and accumulation of wastes form little ‘balls’ which you can actually feel when you press on tight muscles.

A build up of waste products is not all that happens when muscles tighten. Your body’s main information highway, the Center Nervous System (CNS – which is comprised of your brain and spinal chord), is also negatively affected. When muscles tighten, irritated nerve fibres feed back into the CNS continuously, signaling to it that something is wrong—causing a ‘white noise type of effect.

If you’ve ever tried to listen to a song on the radio through bad static you know how frustrating background noise can be. Your nervous system goes through the same thing as it tries to transmit information over a background of irritated nerve signals that distort its messages.

“It seems that the muscles and organs also have the capacity to trigger memories of our emotional reactions to specific events. Consequently, if we find ourselves experiencing something that’s similar and has a familiar emotional charge to it, we’ll sense it in specific parts of the body. For example, we might experience right shoulder tension every time we find ourselves feeling responsible for carrying the weight of the world on our shoulders, or we might have jaw discomfort every time we’re in a verbally contentious situation.

The body and knows and tells us through the muscles. They’ll freeze up, contract, and spasm as if altering the brain that something is up. And while anatomists can’t prove these sensory impulses to the brain via the nerves are actually emotions, they can show that what they evoke is the source of how experience emotions. To support their findings, they use the examples of how strong negative emotions are gut-wrenching, how they can freeze us in our tracks if we’re about to put ourselves in harm’s way, how anger changes the functioning of the heart, and how love makes the knees weak and the palms sweaty. “ Healing Happens With Your Help ~ Carol Ritberger

Muscles enable us to move, and contribute to our shape, as well as helping us to breathe, digest food, circulate blood, and perform many other bodily functions. There are two main types: the skeletal muscles that you can move voluntarily, and the involuntary muscles, like those of the heart, which move automatically.  Each end of a skeletal muscle is attached to a bone on either side of joint.

Complexes, traumas and unresolved issues from our early childhood often  seethe below the level of our consciousness. Almost all unresolved negative patterns and attitudes have a tendency to be pushed to the ‘back’ of the body; it’s the dumping ground, the place where all feelings and experiences that have caused us pain or confusion are buried.  For some of us, our whole life is built around suppressing what is back there—the longer issues of our past aren’t acknowledged—the more damage and wear-and tear they have on the skeletal and muscular part of the body.

In the upcoming articles on this bog, we’re going to explore the many metaphysical causes of back pain and muscle tension and several healing tools and techniques of healing them.  It is only a beginning point to give you your own direction. It has to be up to you to understand and become aware of gathering your own data, understanding it and applying it to your life.

PART ONE OF THIS SERIES

In Part One of Metaphysically Understanding Back Pain, we’re going to begin this series with the neck, ‘the point of connection’ between the head and trunk.

Tight muscles creating an armor in the upper back are often loaded with rage that was initially aimed at ourselves but then get projected outwards toward others. This can be seen in what is known as the ‘dowager’s hump’, a formation of soft tissue that builds in the upper back, most often in older women. It would appear to represent a collection of angry, and resentful thoughts that grow without the means for expression as the years pass; it manifests as we get older and as our reason or purpose for living loses impetus.” The BodyMind Workbook ~ Debbie Shapiro

Following Part One, we’ll discuss the fascia, which your muscles and organs are enfolded in—combined the fascia and muscle tissue (myofascia) define the contour of the body—together they form the structure and movement in the body. When your stressed or ‘uptight’, gastric juices increase, blood vessels go into spasm, particularly the coronary vessels of the heart. Muscles clench and contract, especially the back muscles, your fascia twists, turns, tightens and thickens causing muscular pain.  The muscles in fact appear to be held in a grip of fear.

The bones of your back speak metaphorically too, and there is a very close relationship between back pain and the nerves in and around your spine.  The brain’s electrical system is all about nerves and a cable system that conveys messages around the body.  The spine’s electrical system includes  the myelin sheaths.  These insulated nerve fibres protect messages as they pass to and from the brain without getting jumbled, weakened or lost. It also helps maintain healthy connections between different parts of the brain, which is vital to process information in a multi-faceted way.

We’ll journey through the 33 vertebrae in the five sections or regions of the spine. You have seven vertebrae in your neck or cervical region; twelve in the mid-back, known as the thoracic or dorsal region; (these are the vertebrae attached to your ribs) and five vertebrae (largest of all) in the low back or lumbar region—two other ‘immobile’ sections are the sacrum and the coccyx. The entire package amounts to a mechanism that can bend and twist, turn and squirm, shake and wiggle and do just about anything else within the range of human motion. But just as easily it can stiffen up, resist, hold itself rigid, causing  nerve irritation, muscle tightness, fatigue, muddled thinking, anxiety disorders, chronic stress, insomnia, etc..

The mind/body connection is about turning inward and preparing yourself for reflecting or mirroring on the story of your life. Hopefully this metaphysical series on understanding back pain will act as catalyst to move you into deeper levels of inner awareness. The metaphysical explanations and various techniques and imageries may help you to see real connections between the physical and spiritual world and discover deeper meanings of our emotions and their connection to illness and pain.

Be patient with your healing and respect the fact that true healing takes time. If you’ve been in pain for a while, it will probably take you 25% of that time, to work on all aspects of your problem to generate significant lasting healing change.

“Much of what creates a great athlete, as well as a great meditator, is the ability to become acutely conscious of the simple actions that most people perform unconsciously. In Medical Meditation, these actions include not just breathing, but also postures and movement. Advanced meditators are just as conscious of their movements and postures as they are of their breathing and their state of mind.” The Healing Elements of Medical Meditation ~ Dharma Singh Khalsa, M.D. and Cameron Stauth

to be continued…..

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*It’s only been recently discovered by Dr. Habba, that gallbladder problems could mimic the causes of IBS.  People who experience violent diarrhea immediately after or during a meal, (especially fatty foods) may be suffering from Habba Syndrome caused by an ‘irritable’ gallbladder.

Metaphysically, little annoyances, emotions or attitudes can irritate and create an imbalance in the gallbladder.  People affected most are those who don’t like changes, especially to their daily habits and those who are overly stressed by tests and exams.  You could say their great anxiety ‘wrenches’ their bowels.

The liver is the organ that produces bile salts when you eat (bile salts help to digest fat) but when the gallbladder’s upset it doesn’t process bile well, causing the body to work feverishly to dilute the bile by adding water in the intestinal tract – the reaction – violent trots.

Manic depressive people (bi-polar) could characterize this….another article to look at in the near future. 11/29/2013

Dr. Habba has his own website but to be honest, About.com makes it easier to understand.

“The most common gastrointestinal disorder is IBS. Though it can affect just about anybody, the most common sufferers are between the ages of fifteen, and forty-five, with females being affected more than males.  There are many symptoms within the complex of IBS.  Not all patients have every symptom.  Sometimes there is intermittent difficulty in swallowing.  Acid can refux back up the esophagus from the stomach and cause heartburn, which is an acid taste or or an actual chemical burn.  The acid irritation may cause esophageal spasms and produce chest pain that can closely mimic cardiac pain.  This is labeled gastroesophageal reflux or GER.  Waves of nausea sometimes appear out of nowhere.  They can last for hours or for only a few seconds but in frequent, repetitive waves.  Gas and bloating are among the most common complains but just as high on the patient’s list is frequent constipation alternating with diarrhea”.  WHAT YOUR DOCTOR MAY NOT TELL YOU ABOUT FIBROMYALGIA ~ R. Paul St. Amand, M.D., and Claudia Craig Marek 

 Diana is a client and good friend of mine, who suffers from irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) .  When I asked her to describe how IBS felt physically….the first thing she said was “a constant squeezing cramping, nauseous feeling….like being on a ship rolling in the heavy seas”…then as she thought about it some more, asked me to imagine recovering from a bad case of the stomach flu, where you’re feeling better but still have cramps, loose bowels and ache all over.  Well, between the rolling waves and flu-like symptoms I was nauseously starting to get the picture.  She said “imagine those nauseous achy, cramping feelings always there, all the time as you try to carry on a normal life and pretend to everyone else, everything’s just fine.  IBS limits your life, I can’t remember the last time I went to the movies; you can’t go to certain restaurants because you can’t eat certain foods; traveling long distances is difficult and wherever you go there has to be a toilet nearby.”   Diana also has had headaches, backaches, and acid reflux with her IBS.

“This [irritable bowel syndrome] creates severe abdominal pain, gas, constipation and/or diarrhea.  This condition is not so much a problem with the intestines as with the nerves causing the muscles to contract and spasm.  Anxiety and emotional stress are undoubtedly a major cause, as are depression and feelings of hopelessness, helplessness and inadequacy.

 As a child you may have learned to clench your abdomen when under stress, and this is still a natural reflex, causing the muscles to spasm. Alternatively, this is where you hold hidden fears and concerns, creating a distortion of the muscles.  There may be intense fear, a lack of confidence, or the nervousness that arises confronting unknown situations.  Relationships, also affect the colon, especially issues to do with intimacy and security.” YOUR BODY SPEAKS YOUR MIND ~ Deb Shapiro

 

THE GI TRACT

 Looking for answers to understand the body/mind connection of IBS, I began the search of gaining insight into what could possibly cause the whole digestive system to go totally off whack.  Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a gastrointestinal disorder where the nerves that control the muscles of the GI tract become overly active and sensitive.  The Gastrointestinal tract, also known as the alimentary system, begins at the mouth, then down the throat, esophagus, stomach and small and large intestines.  What this is telling us is that the action and movement of GI tract begins its journey at the mouth—where we ingest food and drink and—other people’s values, thoughts, beliefs, criticisms and judgments.   All these processes have to be churned, chewed, broken down and swallowed before entering the throat, the esophagus and then the stomach. 

 “Through the throat we ‘swallow’ our reality.  Difficulties in this area can therefore be associated with resistance or reluctance to accept our reality and take it in.  Food is what nourishes us and keeps us alive; it is a symbol of the nourishment in our world is often used to replace such qualities.  Yet how often were we told as children to ‘eat our words’, and thus to swallow our feelings?  As Serge King writes in Imagineering for Health,

 We tend to associate food with ideas, as evidenced by such expressions as ‘food for thought’, ‘do you expect me to swallow that?’, ‘you’re feeding me a bunch of baloney’, that idea is unpalatable’, and ‘he was force-fed with the wrong ideas’, The throat, then, and the glands and organs in and around it, can swell up and get sore as a repressed response to ideas that are unacceptable”.  Deb Shapiro THE BODYMIND WORKBOOK 

Louise Hay in her book YOU CAN HEAL YOUR LIFE says… “THE THROAT represents our ability to “speak up” for ourselves, to “ask for what we want,” to say “I am,” etc. When we have throat problems, it usually means we do not feel we have the right to do these things.  We feel inadequate to stand up for ourselves”.

 

When we have problems with accepting, welcoming or refusing something given, the throat and the esophagus literally ‘choke up’; this could be related to the food you were given, the information you’re receiving from the people around you or the thoughts/emotions/beliefs you’re feeling.  Your emotions are greatly influenced by the feedback coming from your own body and from the world around you. 

 “In general, the throat is a symbol of what we swallow and what we can express.  It is tied to creativity.  Throat problems in any area can reflect unexpressed anger, stifled creativity, and obstinate stubbornness (a refusal to change or even be a little flexible).  It can also reflect a continual speaking with criticism, venom, and/or anger.  It can reflect an angry attitude of “when is it my turn?”

 Problems in the throat area should be examined in relation to the specific area.  The larynx, for example, is the voice box, but it also aids in swallowing.  If this is the problem area, are we having trouble swallowing what is being expressed to us?  Are we stifling and swallowing our words when we should be speaking out?  Are we expressing ourselves inappropriately? Are we afraid to speak up? Are others doing the speaking for you?  Do you not feel free to speak of your desires, wishes, etc.”? THE HEALER’S MANUAL ~ Ted Andrews

 The highly acidic stomach blends and predigests all that we’ve swallowed (food, thoughts, criticisms, emotions) and ejects them into the duodenum.  In the duodenum there’s a dramatic change in atmosphere from the strong hydrochloric acid secreted by the cells of the stomach—there’s mucus everywhere! The duodenum is the place where both bile from the gallbladder and hormones from the pancreas enter the gastrointestinal tract.   Specialized hormones secreted from the pancreas and gallbladder help to change the acid from the stomach to a more alkaline solution—if they didn’t, the acid from the stomach would literally burn through the duodenum and the intestines. 

 “All stomach disorders are the manifestation of a failure or refusal to “stomach” a person or situation that you fear or cannot tolerate.  You resist new ideas, especially those of others. It is also difficult for you to deal with someone or something that contradicts your plans, habits, or ways of doing things. You criticize easily (inwardly) and this prevents you from letting go.  Your Body’s Telling You: Love Yourself! Lise Bourbeau

 The intestines are the largest internal organs of the human body; the small intestine measures at least twenty-one feet in length, the large intestine, approximately five feet in length.

 “The intestinal mucous membrane (particularly in the small intestine) is characterized by its numerous coils, which increase the surface in contact with the chyme (food reduced to a pulp by the stomach), optimizing the absorption of nutrients.  In the small intestine, there is constant movement: the chyme is re-mixed up to sixteen times a minute.  The intestine molts.  The cells on its inner surface are renewed every two days.  It is a hypersensitive transmitter-receiver of emotions: a hundred million neurons link it to the brain—a super connection. That is why  you “feel it in your gut”.  Understanding the Messages of YOUR BODY, How to Interpret Physical and Emotional Signals to Achieve Optimal Health ~ Jean-Pierre Barral D.O.

 The lower section of the GI tract is the large intestine (colon and rectum), which is made up of 4 sections—the ascending colon, which joins the small intestines, the transverse colon, the descending colon, and the sigmoid colon which is s-shaped.  The colon is actually coiled in a single large loop beginning at the lower right side of the abdomen, passing upward and crossing under the liver and stomach to the left side, and then leading downward to the rectum.  When the colon isn’t working the way it should, waste in the large intestine backs up, becomes toxic and releases the toxins into the bloodstream—physically it’s a feeling of being bloated, stuffed, constipated or generally down in the dumps.

LARGE INTESTINE 

Imbalance: crying spells, confusion, irritation, frustration, stagnation and anger. Thinking  you can’t do anything right, wanting to run away and hide from the world. Feeling that you are too different and that no one understands you. Difficulty seeing other people’s point of view. Dogmatically defending your position in arguments. Extremely sensitive, thin-skinned. The Secret Language of Your Body ~ By Inna Segal 

 “THE COLON represents our ability to let go, to release that which we no longer need.  The body, being in the perfect rhythm and flow of life, needs a balance of intake, assimilation and elimination.  It is only our fears that block the releasing of the old.

Even if constipated people are not actually stingy, they usually do not trust that there will ever be enough.  They hold on to old relationships that give them pain.  They are afraid to throw out clothes that have been in the closet for years because they might need them some day.  They stay in sitting jobs, or never give themselves pleasure, because they must save for that rainy day.  We do not rummage in last night’s garbage to find today’s meal.  Learn to trust the process of life to always bring you what you need.” YOU CAN HEAL YOUR LIFE ~ Louise Hay

 A healthy gastrointestinal tract can metabolize or eliminate many pollutants that come into your body, but if you suffer constipation, accumulated toxins can become stored in your system and as you eat more chemically based foods, (processed foods) they begin to interact with those that are already there.  Colon cancer is on the rise and its main cause is from accumulated toxic waste.

 We now know that feelings that aren’t digested turn into a heavy congestive residue.  Emotions that become stagnant also collect in different areas of the body causing the digestive system to falter as well as the surrounding organs. Most of our undigested issues, emotions and other stresses and anxieties are known to collect in the abdominal area. This lower region the body can become very toxic when it is forced to hold onto feelings and issues because we’re afraid of dealing with them.

 Many people with IBS know something’s gone haywire in their bodies—something’s not working the way it should—or they’re reacting to foods in ways they shouldn’t react.  Usually and in most cases, the problem is not what you think the problem is.   The problem in most cases isn’t on the outside, it’s on the inside—scientists have proven we have one hundred million sensory (feeling) receptors outside the body but on the inside we have ONE HUNDRED BILLION sensory receptors constantly picking up thoughts, feelings and memories inside your cells.  Your body is one big energetic system—traumas, addictions, depression etc., are all memories recorded inside your cells. 

 Thinking on the billions of sensory receptors inside the body, I traced one of the longest nerves in the body called the ‘vagus nerve’, which runs from the lower part of the brain, down the base of the spine, branching out its nerve fibers to the heart, respiratory, stomach and intestinal tract.  What relation does the vagus nerve have with hormone-sensitive cells?

 IBS AND THE VAGUS NERVE

 “…the most fundamentally important ele­ments in the parasympathetic nervous system, the vagus nerve, which is the most complex of all of our nerves. In Latin, Vagus means “wander­ing”. It is termed so because from its origin in the brain stem it spreads nerve fibers to the throat and upper body, and through these nerve fib­ers signals wander to and fro between the body and the brain. In short, the vagus nerve connects the brain to everything from the tongue, pharynx, vocal chords, lungs, heart, stomach and intestines to different glands that produce enzymes and hormones, influencing digestion, me­tabolism, and much more.

 The vagus nerve’s considerable influence on your lungs and heart and the connection to your brain is quite interesting. This trinity, brain-heart-lungs, rules your body and governs your mind. The key to managing your state of mind and stress level lies in being able to activate the calming parasympathetic pathways of your nervous system on command. Typi­cally, the will cannot control this part of the nervous system, but if you hold your breath for a brief moment and then slowly exhale, the vagus nerve is stimulated bringing peace to your body and mind.”

The Nervous System and the Vagus Nerve http://breatheology.com/services/articles/health/the-nervous-system-and-the-vagus-nerve

 The vagus nerve, part of the parasympathetic nervous system has a major importance in the process of our digestion.  Not only does it travel from brain to gut—it also travels from gut to brain—a two-way communication system.  When the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems are balanced, we easily and effortlessly adapt to the many changes and sensations experienced inside and outside the body. But when the sympathetic nervous system over-reacts, or is in distress, the vagus nerve becomes overly sensitive gravely affecting our whole digestive system or GI tract.

 “The vagus nerve can be activated in many ways—with pressure, electrical charge, by drugs, and by physiological processes, such as eating defecating, or motion sickness. Activation of the vagus nerve can make you faint—by switching on part of the brain that lower blood pressure and slow your heart rate. This is called a vaso-vagal attack. Sudden pressure on the vagus nerve, where it winds around the great artery in the neck, the carotid artery, or where it originates in the belly, can also make you feel faint.  Other activation of the vagus nerve can make you vomit. This is why if you are punched in the abdomen, you feel faint and nauseous. The vagus nerve has a lot to do with the gut—with the stomach, with digestion, with the liver. It is the great nerve cable that mediates those sensations that we associate with ‘gut reactions’. Its role in digestion was one clue that pointed to the vagus nerve as a route by which cytokines in the belly could signal the brain. ” The Balance Within: The Science Connecting Health With Emotion ~ Esther M. Stemberg, M.D.

 Vagus nerve can misbehave or be more sensitive in some people http://www.doctorslounge.com/neurology/forums/backup/topic-20664.html

 

IS IBS A NEUROLOGICAL CONDITION

 “Because of rich connections to the autonomic nervous system, the digestive organs are common sites of psychosomatic illnesses. Many IBS sufferers have some type of psychiatric disorder: their IBS becomes more severe under stress.  Crohn’s disease has also been linked to emotional distress.  Some panic attack sufferers also report bowel disorders, with intestinal triggers starting in the sympathetic nervous system.  Other illnesses, too, such as cancer, adult-onset (type 2) diabetes, and rheumatoid arthritis are being studied for psychosomatic relationships.

 Experts such as Michael Gershon, MD, propose that the stomach actually contains a second brain, rich with neurotransmitters of its own, which triggers IBS.  Gershon says IBS is an example of the gut working in isolation, though he recognizes the brain-gut axis such as when “butterflies in the stomach: occur as a result of the brain sending a message of anxiety to the gut, which sends messages back to the brain that it’s unhappy.” Cyndi Dale ~ The Subtle Body – An Encyclopedia of your Energetic Anatomy

 Patients with IBS, have been tested and shown to have increased colon muscle activity…a breeding ground of uncertainty, insecurity and anxiety.  (Anxiety is usually caused from a stressful event but can also occur without provocation.) When IBS sufferers were asked what they thought brought it on psychologically, change was number one on the list, of the many that followed, came loss of sleep, worry, self-doubt, unexpected losses, indecisiveness, confusion, fear, conflict, anger, ordinary life pressures and a feeling of helplessness. 

 IBS sufferers often have a tendency to suppress their feelings and their own creative abilities.  Feeling insecure they’re afraid of taking risks and will do everything to ignore or run away from problems—running away has many connotations—it could mean physically moving from place to place; sleeping all the time; getting sick; or constantly keeping oneself busy. 

 The human body is made up of a complex network of energy fields that work together as one unique powerful system affecting us spiritually, emotionally, mentally and physically.  Everything that affects the body affects the mind and everything that affects the mind, affects the body.  Many health ailments that crop up later in our lives usually have to do with painful memory patterns programmed in our cells that make our bodies tense and in an up-tight survival mode—unable to stay in the present our minds jump back and forth between the past and the future, forcing adrenaline to start racing through our bodies.  Under this intense stress, our bodies release ten times the amount of cortisol and adrenaline.  Digestive problems such as diarrhea, constipation, irritable bowel syndrome, bloating, gas or indigestion are usually part of the symptoms.  Our minds too are like virtual hurricanes, spinning out of control.   

 When the nerves of the sympathetic nervous system become excited, they alert the inner portion of the adrenal glands to send out large quantities of adrenaline (epinephrine) and noradrenaline (norepinehrine) into the bloodstream.  Both these hormones create the classic “fight or flight” response, with rapid blood sugar release, increased muscle tension, improved mental alertness and slower digestion.

 “Symptoms of the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems out of control (also known as Dysautonomia) “can include frequent, vague but disturbing aches and pains, faintness (or even actual fainting spells) fatigue and inertia, severe anxiety attacks, rapid heartbeat, (tachy-cardia), hypotension, (low blood pressure), poor exercise tolerance, gastrointestinal symptoms such as irritable bowel syndrome, sweating, dizziness, blurred vision, numbness and tingling, anxiety and (quite understandably) depression.  Other symptoms include enhanced pain sensitivity, disturbed sleep and brain fog. Living Well With Chronic Fatigue Syndrome and Fibromyalgia ~ Mary J Shomon

 IBS MISDIAGNOSIS

 It’s no wonder doctors have a hard time assessing IBS within the abdominal organs.  Many IBS patients have been through rigorous testings: ultrasounds, endoscopies, colonoscopies, specialists, food allergists, etc…all in an attempt to find and get rid of something that isn’t even there.  From the quote above, we learn that many people with Chronic Fatigue and Fibromyalgia are known to suffer IBS symptoms.  In fact, in many cases the cause of IBS is Chronic Fatigue or Fibromyalgia. 

 “Contraction and relaxation of [the] intestinal wall muscles are what propel raw materials on their way to the next digestive station to face the action of various hormones and enzymes.  Quite likely the many intestinal glands share in the general problem of fibromyalgia and, along with the muscles prove inadequate for an ideal digestive sequence.  Constipation and diarrhea are like changing traffic signals for the stop and go prompting of the digestive and eliminative processes.  As you would imagine, this causes serious malfunction in the entire gastrointestinal tract, certainly enough to produce all the symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome”. WHAT YOUR DOCTOR MAY NOT TELL YOU ABOUT FIBROMYALGIA ~ R. Paul St. Amand, M.D., and Claudia Craig Marek 

 Another misdiagnosis with IBS is endometriosis.  Endometriosis is a female condition where the lining of the uterus, known as endometrial lining grows outside of the uterus in the abdomen and pelvic area.  

 “….many recent studies have highlighted the need to consider endometriosis during the evaluation of unexplained digestive complaints such as IBS.  They note that because endometrial tissue can sometime attach itself to the bowel, certain symptoms that are usually present in IBS – such as abdominal pain, distension and people with IBS. 

 In light of the misdiagnosis and mistreatment of their illness, the women in our study reflect on the ways in which they had made sense of their own experiences.  Many of them began to question their own perceptions of the pain and symptoms because they had been told many times that’s ‘Nothing is wrong.’ …..The women in our study often felt let down by their doctors, they had turned to them for help and had placed their trust in them and yet they did not receive what they needed.  In most cases, it had taken several years to get a correct diagnosis, even though some of the women had sought opinions from different doctors and had visited hospitals many times”. The Daily Telegraph: Ibs Dancey and Backhouse

 Another cause of IBS could be Candida Albicans.  The intestinal tract contains small amounts of this yeast but sometimes antibiotics, birth control pills and a high carbohydrate diet can cause an overgrowth of this yeast, causing a condition called candidiasis.  Candidiasis has been linked to allergies, migraines, vaginitis, irritable bowel syndrome, indigestion, asthma and many more ailments.

 

HEALING IBS

 When Diana first came to see me, she mentioned feeling weary, worn-out and nervously stressed.  She’d had a tough week with her IBS as well as finding herself caught up, emotionally in family matters that couldn’t be avoided. Diana also told me she’d had this dull and throbbing headache for at least three days now. 

 As we know, IBS can have a tremendous strain on the body’s reserves, hindering its own natural defenses and affecting its metabolism and weakening the immune system.   Usually when we’re upset or overly irritated about something, the whole digestive system doesn’t work as it should.  Food entering the intestines isn’t always broken down completely, and as a result it reaches the large intestines in a highly undigested state.  When this happens, billions of hungry bacteria attack and break-down the food causing flatulence and gas build-up that in some cases becomes almost intolerable.    As well, the lymph system and blood circulation are reduced, making it more difficult for the body to absorb necessary vitamins and minerals to keep it healthy.

 Usually when a person comes to see me, the first thing I do is look at their overall level of energy.  When I shake their hand is it cold/hot or clammy.  Just that touch can give a healer subtle perceptions of the different energy flows in the body.  I also look at them physically, their stance, how they support themselves…are they standing upright or are they slouched.  I also look at their eyes, hair and especially their skin, which is one of the greatest indicators of a person’s health.  Then, as they relax, I just let them talk, asking questions here and there, like when their ailment started.  I don’t assume at this point, allowing the client to lead as I just sit quietly writing down their symptoms or mentally recording them in my mind.  After getting a clearer picture of what’s happening now, I ask if any of this could be related to illnesses from the past. 

 When Diana and I first met, she looked spacey and anxious; her adrenaline looked racey her eyes blood shot…something I’ve noticed when a person’s creative center is blocked.  Also pressure behind the eyes can cause the eyes delicate capillaries to leak blood…with IBS, this could be from gas buildup in the digestive tract.  Mental constipation is another possibility.

 When we were done with the preliminaries I did a body scan of Diana’s energy…her whole body felt emotionally wired, erratic.  Her throat and stomach area were on fire; her abdominal area felt congested, tense, bloated and hot to the touch.  There seemed to be a see-saw of emotions that Diana was working hard at stifling and suppressing…the problem with this is at some point and time they will find a way out and when they do they’re like a wild beast on the loose.  When this happens, constipation and diarrhea can take turns in rapid shifts and as a consequence make us feel totally exhausted. 

 Diana also suffered from severe heartburn.  I’ve categorized heartburn with that of the perfectionist.  Heartburn can happen from an attack on our self esteem, a feeling of being trapped, competitiveness, a hostile environment, or anxious and overwhelmed by responsibilities.  Chronic anxiety and worry is closely associated with IBS and ulcers and is associated with perfectionism.  Perfectionists are very hard on themselves and others, demanding the best at all times.  They find fault in almost everything they do—they find fault in their appearance, their homes, relationships, children, clothes, cars—they can frustrate us to no end with their insistence that everything has to be perfect. 

 Perfectionists need to loosen their standards, leave the past and move into unfamiliar ground—they need to let go of their fear and move into the unknown.  They have to stop manipulating others and their world where they feel they’re in control.  They need to practice gratitude to help them relax and be happy with life as it is.   Once they know what beliefs and behaviors keep them stuck, they have a greater sense of adventure, trust and enjoyment.  They let go of fear and self-doubt and with motivation regain a zest for life.  

  “A Meditation for Perfectionists

 Okay, I give up.  I’m ready to stop running the entire world.  I’d like to rest.  Please (please please) help me stop being responsible for everything.  Please help to relax and be happy with life as it is.  And, by the way, thanks for all the wonderful love and relationships I have” . Daphne Rose Kingma

 The body is a remarkable healing machine…at times it can be thrown off course but we can, through diligence and awareness bring it back to balance. 

 After her Reiki treatment, Diana was much more relaxed with a much happier expression on her face.  We talked about her coming back and looking at other treatments.  In the clinic where I was working, several Alternative therapies were available including a naturopathic doctor whom I introduced Diana to.  The naturopathic doctor spoke to Diana, explaining to her that most IBS patients have high levels of cortisol in their blood and overworked adrenals.  She talked to Diana about breath awareness and self-awareness to slow her restless system down.  She spoke of meditation, of going within and finding the peaceful depths of her being…there Diana will find strength and balance, enabling her to transform old habits of restlessness and tension into new patterns. Both Diana and I were nodding our heads in agreement…we’d just been talking about that earlier.

 I think most people will agree with me that traditional ways of treating ailments aren’t working us very well.  The body itself consists of four levels of healing…spirit, mental, emotional and physical.  All 4 need to be implemented to help us heal and integrate them in our lives.  If we skip or neglect one, the body won’t be properly balanced.

 “Although you likely view your illness as an enemy, you should let it become your ally.” Making it an ally by doing the hard internal work of sorting through the emotional and psychological components of your illness will, when combined with the treatments for the physical factors involved, result in lasting recovery”. Dr. Teitelbaum

 It was suggested Diana have a stool analysis to see how her digestion and intestines were working.  A stool analysis will also indicate how much residual fats and vegetable fibers are in her feces and if perhaps she needed a digestive enzyme to help her.  The naturopath suggested an organic greens concentrate as a drink each day, which not only provided her body with full natural nutrients, it contains large amounts of chlorophyll which is an easy way to assimilate magnesium in the body.  Vitamin B6 was suggested for Diana’s immune and nervous system…and its ability as an aid for digesting fat and proteins.  Also B6 is essential in the production of prostaglandin, which is necessary for normal thymus function.  For her problems with sleep possibly as little as 5 mg of melatonin would help to rebalance her sleep/wake cycles. 

 Diana was also told to ‘move her body’, the naturpath explained that the lymphatic system of the body has no pump of its own, it relies on body movement to transport lymphathic cells throughout the body, as well as release toxins.  Rhythmic bouncing like jumping rope is one quick way to increase lymph flow…another way is Donna Eden’s lymphathic flush and three thump exercises,  which are provided as videos.

 Donna Eden Three Thumps https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YB6WoCDJ5RM

 Donna Eden Lymphathic Flush https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=45tLuqMrup0

 Mary Sullivan Lymphatic Brushing https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E5PMosLe8lg

 

Another thing Diana was told was to ‘bulk up’ her diet.  The naturopath told her, if you’re eating the typical ‘western diet’ then you’re probably consuming a lot of processed foods.  A diet with lots of roughage and fiber like fruits and vegetables will help to get the recommended 25 grams of fiber a day.  If bloating is a problem with some ‘gassy’ foods, try soaking them overnight before cooking, this seems to help.

 Other good sources of dietary fiber are whole-grain breads, pastas, brown rice, beans and bran.  But she was warned, go slowly, introducing fiber could make your symptoms worse which will improve within two of three weeks if you stick to it.    Unfortunately some people with IBS are gluten intolerant…if Diana thought this may be the case, she could cut gluten out of her diet for a few days to see whether her symptoms improve. 

 We talked about triggers to IBS, like artificial sweeteners, sugar, lactose, coffee, eggs and more. 

 And as we already knew, Diana needed to find ways to naturally reduce her stress and anxiety.  As she said, we’re working on it.

  

BREATHING MEDITATION

 Breathing meditations help to soften the belly muscles by allowing the breath to move the diaphragm down which allows the lower organs to move outward.   When we breath into the feelings and sensations within our abdominal area, we experience different feelings and sensations in our stomach and intestines such as rumbling, gurgling, churning, pulsing, tingling and warmth.

 Belly breathing helps alleviate symptoms of constipation and indigestion because it releases incredible amounts of blocked energy—congestion will dissipate, digestion will improve and the whole abdominal area will feel positive energy returning.  When awareness flows in we immediately experience a sense of relaxation and a lighter, freer flow of energy because we’re listening to our bodies more closely than we ever did before.  We’re aware of our presence, our form and our communication with our body and our immediate surroundings.   Belly breathing helps to relieve the stresses we hold onto in different parts of our bodies—even in the upper back and shoulders.

 Breathing into the feelings and sensations we experience within our intestines will help to awaken the consciousness within the abdominal area.  With practice we’ll experience a whole range of feelings and sensations such as rumbling, churning, bubbling, pulsing, tingling, warmth. The healing intelligence within our bodies will help to alleviate the symptoms of constipation and digestive disorders such as IBS and crohn’s disease.  Congestion will dissipate, digestion will improve and the whole abdominal area will begin to feel more and more alive. Breathing deeply and fully into the abdomen helps to relieve the many stresses we hold in different parts of our bodies.

 “Breathing into the abdomen or other parts of our bodies can bring anxiety and other unsettling feelings up to the surface. Many of these feelings and issues have been held in the body for years.  The unpleasant feelings will dissipate as we continue to breathe into them. These feelings need to be digested so that we can develop a greater awareness and become more present in our bodies.

 Our rigid body armor will begin to dissolve whenever we breathe into the tension that we holding within any part of our body. We can further this process by breathing into nay subsequent feelings that emerge.  The frozen emotions will become more fluid and this will make it easier for us to process them. Consistent daily practice will enable us to dissolve the stresses, process our emotions and clear stagnant energies before they start to harm our bodies. Processing the stresses and emotions stimulates our minds creative and adaptive problem solving capabilities. Our minds will begin to operate more efficiently so that we can become more highly functional and that will open up a whole new range of possibilities”. Emergence: Heal your body and mind Ben Oofana

 Conscious Breathing https://ravenstarshealingroom.wordpress.com/2010/11/29/conscious-breathing/

 Breathing is the Key to Awareness https://ravenstarshealingroom.wordpress.com/2010/11/07/breathing-is-the-key-to-awareness/

  

Great links

 Foods that heal IBS http://www.livestrong.com/article/323818-foods-that-heal-ibs/

 Digestion:  Your Third Emotional Center http://www.drnorthrup.com/womenshealth/healthcenter/topic_details.php?topic_id=91

 Crohns Disease and Irritable Bowel http://liftingtones.com/2010/06/13/crohns-disease-its-cause-and-cure/

 A great site with a form too http://www.healingwell.com/ibs/

 5 simple steps to heal IBS http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=z_S8YX6PY6s

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“This is a good example of factors coming together and combining to create a difficulty.  Stomach ulcers are often physically due to a specific virus but invariably occur at the same time when you are very stressed and the reality you are dealing with is becoming corrosive, wearing away at your coping mechanism.  You may be taking in too much acidity from others, or your feelings are eating away at you. 

Aggravated by digestive juices, ulcers arise when you are under too much pressure, worried by financial or work situations, relationships, guilt or shame.  Worry is the key word here—it is almost as if the worry itself is eating you.  All of this creates the perfect environment for the virus.  The ulcer creates a feeling of being raw and exposed, as if there is nowhere to hide.  There may also be repressed aggression, a desire to get revenge or to lash out at someone.  There is a deep need to be soothed and nurtured, to return to the safety of being cared for—as seen in having to eat baby foods as a form of treatment.” YOUR BODY SPEAKS YOUR MIND ~ Deb Shapiro 

Most of us are unaware of the many forces that can interfere with our physical, emotional, nutritional and environmental lives.  When these four areas of responsibility are ignored or dismissed, our body/mind/spirit is forced to change through some kind of crisis.  Usually our early experiences, especially our childhood are the ones that teach us our greatest lessons and reflect back to us our weaknesses and strengths and desires and potentials. 

When I was just in my young teens, (thirteen/fourteen) an ultrasound revealed I had a stomach ulcer (peptic).  You’d think the anxiety of high school would do this but it wasn’t school that caused it.  In fact, I couldn’t wait to get to school, it was my get-away, a place of freedom, where like a wild horse I galloped free.  School was my place of escape, a place to run from myself and from my family.  

The radical shifts of emotion and extreme inner tension came from my home—it was a literal war-zone!    There were times I was scared out of my wits, especially when a shouting match between my mom and dad had dishes and pots being thrown across the room or my brothers emotional yelling turned into fist-fights and black-eyes and bloody noses.  I was the youngest of four, my oldest brother 10 years older and younger brother 8 years older.  My father fought with my brothers, especially Len, my second brother.  I remember when we moved from our house in Montreal to Toronto, the walls in that home still held the image of human imprints from people being pushed into them.  

During that time I was on Zantac, Librium and an antacid, but the burning searing pain that tore through my body never subsided until I quit school and left home at 18 years of age (I failed a grade and was put back a grade when we moved).  Through the many years that followed I learned that the present is not the past and that I wasn’t in any kind of danger when people around me critically raised their voices.   But, I have learnt to keep my inner antennae on….an extremely helpful, instinctive/intuitive tool and a natural gift from the stomach/solar plexus area.   

 

THE CRUX OF THE PROBLEM 

“ULCERS are no more than fear—tremendous fear of “not being good enough.” We fear not being good enough for a parent, we fear not being good enough for a boss.  We can’t stomach who we are.  We rip our guts apart trying to please others.  No matter how important our job is, our inner self-esteem is very low.  We are afraid they will find out about us. “ Louise Hay You Can Heal Your Life  

When I left home I had trouble expressing myself  (personal power) to friends and associates because I was afraid of how they’d react.  I was very shy and sensitive, taking any form of criticism really badly.  We (stomach people) clam up or won’t stand up for ourselves, out of the fear of being hurt, judged, humiliated, misunderstood and/or misinterpreted.  We’re scared others are going to react and rationalize our feelings, or our own fear of being wrong.  Another thing we’re afraid of, is being, either emotionally overwhelmed or ignored—we’ve all experienced that feeling when someone just isn’t all there—either there’s a glazed look in their eyes and a restlessness in their body or they look at their watch, spring to their feet and interrupt us.    

On the other hand, many of us look to others to boost our self-esteem, hoping they will fill us up with good thoughts and feelings.  Unfortunately, looking to others for our happiness and emotional well-being severely limits our freedom and expression.  It creates a miscommunication with ourselves (our lack of ability to understand what is really going on inside us). As we seek others approval, we begin to wear masks, to disguise our true feelings and to protect ourselves from being criticized, put down or humiliated by others.  We even try to deceive ourselves into thinking we can control, manipulate or alter our future—but the stomach area, the solar plexus/3rd chakra will not accept lies – if we don’t speak our truth our solar plexus tightens by the words we haven’t spoken.  

“People have known for ages that many different emotions are related to ulcers.  Feeling threatened, for example, causes the brain to signal the stomach to secrete more acid while reducing the blood flow to the lining, thus setting the stage for ulcers.  Some scientists have theorized that ulcers are caused by an overgrowth of a bacterium known as Heliobacteria pylori in the stomach.  Since, however, all of us have Heliobacteria pylori in our stomachs—just as we all have E.coli in our intestines, and all women have yeast in their vaginas—there must be something about the environment in some people’s stomachs that makes them more susceptible to the bacteria’s overgrowing.  Scientists believe that stressful life changes, feelings of threat, and being trapped or restrained can alter some people’s immunity and cause the bacteria to overgrow, setting the stage for ulcers.  It’s as if H. pylori is the bearer of bad tidings, but not necessarily the bad news itself.” Mona Lisa Schulz   

The stomach area contains bundles of sensitive nerve endings, which also connect and join with, thousands and thousands of nerve endings close to the heart—this explains why hate, passion, fear, anger and many other emotions are felt ‘instantly’, ‘emotionally’ and extremely in this highly nerve center.   As we learn and become aware of our emotional sensitivities, the solar plexus and heart area form a bridge connecting us to our higher and lower centers.  We discover we can become the conductor/controller of our own emotions and desires without becoming overly involved.   

This abdominal area has also been called the seat of your subconscious mind and the subconscious mind holds many memories of the past—some of them painful, bitter and unjust. Sometimes we can get swamped with painful emotions in reaction to something we’re doing at the moment that suddenly reminds us of a past abuse. One minute we’re feeling fine, the next minute we’ve got a knot of fear/shame in the pit of our stomach. Often, these kinds of emotional reactions are amplified by psychic residue dumped on us from our childhood or recent past.  Then comes the fear—fear blocks our senses and numbs our perceptions…we can’t feel or read our environment and we can’t read ourselves. We look for hidden meanings of people’s actions—if someone looks at us the wrong way, our energy takes a nosedive.  If someone praises us, our energy hits an all time high. 

“Third chakra energy is logical rather than artistic, sophisticated rather than child-like, doctrinaire rather than organic, cunning rather than innocent, suspicious rather than trusting, and responsibility-bound rather than flowing. If the second chakra holds the natural child, the third chakra holds the controlling parent. Where the second chakra is more like the right-brain side of identity, the third chakra “thinks” more like the brain’s left hemisphere. Third chakra thought also differs from sixth chakra thought. Sixth chakra thought, though it may be profound, is more detached and cerebral. Third chakra thought is entwined with your identity, your fears, and the needs of your ego. 

The energy of the second chakra can be cut off from that of the third chakra, as well as the others above it. There is an energy system between the second and third chakras called the belt flow…the belt flow, which goes around the waist, can become like a huge wall above the second chakra that cuts off the second chakras natural spontaneity, trust, and faith. When this happens, as it frequently does in modern Western cultures, the person may be tormented by merciless self-hatred, a desecration that often originates in the third chakra’s attempts to shape an identity that differs vastly from the natural child of the second chakra. Once the connection between the second and third chakra is opened, energy rises; knowledge about a truer, kinder, gentler self can filter up; and self-condemnation and self-hatred begin to dissolve in that knowledge.” Energy Medicine: Balancing Your Body’s Energies For Optimal Health, Joy and Vitality ~ Donna Eden 

REDEFINING STRESS 

The Amygdala

 Rich connections also exist between the amygdala in the temporal lob of the brain and the stomach. These connections allow our intense emotions—fear, anxiety, anger and rage, threat, intimidation—to be felt in the stomach and abdomen.  Since the amygdala plays an important role in memory, it can also moderate the degree to which adverse or traumatic experiences can produce changes in the GI system.  In animals the amygdala controls whether the animals feel resilient (powerful) or vulnerable in stress situations.  The more helpless the feeling in the face of threat, restraint, and aggression, the greater the individual’s likelihood of developing ulcers”.   AWAKENING INTUITION Mona Lisa Schulz  

We are all born with genetically programmed instincts which are located in what’s called the primitive brain or amygdala which in the fight/flight response showers the body and brain with chemicals, quickly turning the stress button ON.  When we sense danger, the autonomic (instinctual) nervous system signals the body to release the hormone adrenaline into the blood stream, providing instant energy to the hearts, lungs, and muscles.  We are pumped up and ready to fight or run. 

“A fundamental assumption in this work is that the brain has multiple memory systems, each devoted to different kinds of memory functions. For traumatic memory, two systems are particularly important. For example, if you return to the scene of an accident, you will be reminded of the accident and will remember where you were going, who you were with, and other details about the experience. These are explicit (conscious) memories mediated by the hippocampus and other aspects of the temporal lobe memory system. In addition, your blood pressure and heart rate may rise, you may begin to sweat, and your muscles may tighten up. These are implicit (unconscious) memories mediated by the amygdala and its neural connections”. Joseph LeDoux 

From Stress To Tension

 What I’m trying to prove is that our bodies are still responding to this ancient fear mechanism that rushes intense energy into us, preparing us for the fight or flight response.  But even though our lives have changed regarding the word stress, we are still reacting to the old instinctual unconscious reactions.  As a result we aren’t coping so much with stress as we are with ‘tension’.  Stress as you’ve read is a natural response, necessary for life.  ‘Tension’, is the not-so-good physical and mental repercussions we experience when we haven’t been able to process our stress effectively. 

Stress becomes tension when we perceive something unexpected as threatening, when in reality, it is not.  We should be living in a society of trust, cooperation, and interacting well with others, yet in our minds we still remember the ‘survival of the fittest’ that still sits in our unconscious.  Watch out for those dinosaurs!

 When we are criticized for something that we’ve done, we immediately respond with fear and anger as if it were a threat to our very life—our old programming says ‘defend yourself or you’ll die—rather than taking the time to step back and understand what just happened.  Instead our hearts start thumping, we become restless and either express ourselves angrily—physically defend ourselves—or repress all that unexpressed energy which then develops as physical tension.  We haven’t understood that we’ve set ourselves up to experience ‘tension’ from our own lack of awareness.

Another cause of tension is when we fight something with our mental thoughts that we cannot physically control or change—traffic jams come to mind—very frustrating indeed.  How many times have you fumed with rage at not getting home in time or to that all-important meeting and then brought all that fuelled anger home, or to the office with you?  When you are really stressed out, you radiate that stressed energy to the people around you through your chakras and auras.  Consciously or sub-consciously, these people then transfer a great bulk of this stress energy by being nasty and rude to others.  It’s like a merry-go-round.

“Most illness begins with stress-producing thinking as the mind imposes tension on the body.  Every thought has a corresponding effect on the body.  Recent studies in the growing field of psychosomatic medicine demonstrate that our body’s finely tuned immune system responds also immediately to both positive and negative thoughts and attitudes. 

 Resistance is like a stone dropped into a calm pond; the emotions are the ripples.  Chronic stress begun in the mind, creates emotional turbulence and imposes itself upon the body as stored tension.  The tension translates to painful symptoms: headaches or pain in the stomach, lower back or elsewhere.  We have all experienced these symptoms with no apparent physical cause”. NO ORDINARY MOMENTS ~ Dan Millman

 It does seem that most of our problems come from a lack of wisdom and understanding.  Instead of being blinded or tied into our own person viewpoint, we can learn to dissolve tension by changing the way we perceive someone or something.  Balancing our emotions with reason sounds easy, but it isn’t.  It takes time to learn to control our impulses our instinctive way of responding to life.  Instead of being raw and blunt we need to step back and take a higher view of a situation, instead of reigning supreme over others.  The solar plexus chakra is the centre of positive and negative emotions—ambition, courage, violence, cruelty–are just some of the many.  When a person is very angry, the solar plexus chakra pulsates erratically.  This causes the diaphragm to move erratically, resulting in shallow breathing.

 “In the early nineteenth century a man named Alexis St. Martin accidentally shot himself in the abdomen.  The wound was large, and it never healed.  Through a small hole in St. Martin’s abdominal wall, you could clearly see his stomach lining.  The famous surgeon William Baumont undertook a study of Martin, to determine what effect the man’s moods would have on his stomach.  He observed the lining changing color as a given emotion caused the release of more or less acid in the stomach.  Whenever anger caused St. Martin’s face to go red, the stomach lining would also turn red.  This was the essence of mind-body (or in this case mind-stomach) medicine.  Every emotion St. Martin felt—anxiety, resentment, frustration, anger, happiness—was literally revealed on the video screen of his stomach wall.” Awakening Intuition Mona Lisa Schulz

 MORE ENERGETICS OF THE STOMACH/SOLAR PLEXUS

 The solar plexus, stomach area, is the place where every memory you’ve ever had of being criticized is registered.  No organ of your body is more quickly affected by your moods than your stomach! 

 “The stomach is the primary organ for storing, diluting, and digesting food.  It is our reservoir.  It is a symbol of the thoughts, ideas, and inspirations that we learn to digest and assimilate.  It is the reservoir from which we can draw to experience the new and open worlds. 

 Stomach problems often reflect outer problems in digesting life’s experiences.  Are we afraid of digesting or experiencing the new?  Are we holding on to that which is no longer beneficial or nourishing to us?  Do we have fears of not being good enough just as we are?  Do we not approve of ourselves?  Are we having difficulty assimilating new ideas, concepts, and perspectives, and putting them in motion in our life?  The Healer’s Manual ~ Ted Andrews

 Your abdomen and pelvis contain many important organs that are critical for your survival.  The abdomen consists of the digestive system/gastrointestinal system that is made up of approximately thirty-three feet of plumbing that starts at the mouth and ends at the rectum.  (The digestive tract needs that much length to help break down the food’s nutrients and distribute them throughout the body by way of the bloodstream). This system consists of the mouth, pharynx or throat, esophagus, stomach and the small and large intestines.  Digestion begins when food or drink enters the mouth; churning, mixing, breaking down, emulsifying and absorbing the nutrients; and, finally, circulating the nutrients through the blood until they reach their final destination.  Your tissues and organs are the final-destination where the digested fats, proteins, carbohydrates, minerals and vitamins are released, helping to keep your body healthy and working properly. 

 The solar plexus, located at the center of the body (stomach area) is one of the most important chakras because it controls, energizes and affects so many surrounding vital organs; no other organ of the body is so easily disturbed or affected by our emotions than the stomach!  This part of your body is also the most important center of the sympathetic nervous system because it is the nerve center that stimulates and reflects your most deepest feelings.  Fear, anger, shame, guilt and pain often get stored in the memory cells of the stomach, sitting there for days/months/years until someone, or some outside force awakens them.  This area is easily disturbed or imbalanced by negative thoughts and emotions—when these strong impulses are released, they’re sent through the nerves to every part of the body.  When strong emotions are released, we have a ‘body flashback’, the cells and muscles of our body temporarily control and produce all kinds of fears and symptoms that we can’t at the time stop. 

 The brain and the digestive system work together.  Scientists have long known that the brain stimulates the digestive organs through parasympathetic activities such as sight, smell, and taste, which stimulate hunger. Psychological factors also impact hunger and digestion, influencing the movements of the intestine, secretion of digestive enzymes, and other digestive functions.  Intense sadness or anger, for example, will set off a chain reaction that stimulates or reduces hunger, perhaps causing weight and digestive problems, and sometimes intestinal illnesses.

 On the other hand, the digestive system also influences the brain.  For example, long-standing or recurring diseases such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) ulcerative colitis, and other painful diseases affect emotions, behaviors, and daily functioning.  This two-way association has been called the brain-gut axis.” The Subtle Body: An Encyclopedia Of Your Energetic Anatomy ~ Cyndi Dale

 When studying the healing arts, I became fascinated with the many teachings and how the teachers/healers/authors spoke of the depth and complexity of our emotional lives, and, what we could do to heal them.  I studied the endocrine system, the body’s nervous system and the chakras.  In studying ulcers and other stomach ailments, I’ve learned that virtually every chakra is somehow affected.   Why?  Because your self esteem, your ego and your personality sits in the 3rd chakra.  This is the place of how you feel about yourself and how secure and stable you are in the outside world.

 “At the top chakra of the lower triangle of chakras, the third chakra is vitally important in enabling us to survive and succeed in the material world. Even though it sits atop the foundation of the chakra system (the lower three chakras), the third chakra is also in close communication with the higher chakras—particularly the fourth chakra or heart chakra, and the sixth chakra, or third eye”. MEDITATION AS MEDICINE, Activate the Power of Your Natural Healing Force, by Dharma Singh, M.D. Khalsa, Cameron Stauth

 I fell in love with Mona Lisa Schulz and her incredible knowledge of the body/mind/spirit dynamics and its intimate connection with the brain….

 “A large network of fibers of the autonomic nervous system—which fires the brain without being consciously aware of it—runs from the brain down to the gut, where the nerves actually wrap around the tubelike intestines like a radial belt on a tire and cause them to contract.  When you describe something as “gut-wrenching,” that’s exactly what you mean: when you feel an emotion, the fire from the nerves branches down, wraps around your gut, and clenches it.” Awakening Intuition ~ Mona Lisa Schulz

 HEALING THE STOMACH/SOLAR PLEXUS/3rd CHAKRA

 “I don’t have to be afraid any more.  My fear used to be overwhelming, but the things that overwhelmed me are the past.  I don’t have to yell.  I can be heard when I whisper, if I quietly speak my truth.  Love is the opposite of fear; the more I can let go of my fear, the more I can love and be loved”. Daphne Rose Kingma

 One of the first things we have to learn in order to heal is to be aware of what we are doing to our body.  Most of us are so busy with our lives, we rarely take the time to connect with ourselves and get a sense of what we’re feeling/sensing/being.  Healing involves acting consistently to ensure that you are doing everything that you need to do for a healthy life.  It’s a time to take responsibility for yourself and let go of others responsibilities that are interfering with your own needs.  Realize, this may look to others as a form of selfishness as you get rest, exercise and the good food you need.  Stepping back and doing your own self-healing work as well as possibly receiving care from someone else, produces the best overall healing.  This healing process literally opens up your body’s energetic channels, your blood flow, digestive system, your breathing, your nervous system and your muscle and joint function.  It means learning about yourself, your deep-seated needs and your ‘individuality’. 

 Putting out the Fire 

We all have fears that frightens us—after all that’s fears job—and when we experience its grip, we feel it in the form of butterflies, stomach cramps, heartburn and spasms—we lose power and—we lose our ability to think things through and reason.  When we are out of power, we can become stuck, rigid and very critical of the things we don’t understand. 

Fear seems to be, as Louise Hay and others have quoted, the main cause for stomach ulcers and stomach ailments.  But what is fear anyways?  Where does it come from? Well, from what I know of my own fears and from hearing the fears of others, fear has many different faces…..showing up as, anxiety, panic disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorders, stress and phobias.  We could even say that All negative emotions are a derivative of fear.  These emotions can express themselves as anger, frustration, embarrassment, denial, grief, shame, jealousy, insecurity, rage, guilt, resentment, stress and worry. 

 Now all fear isn’t bad.  Some fears are useful emotions, protecting us from harm, offering us guidance and forcing us to move quickly into action….e.g., the primitive fight/flight response that signals, protects and saves our lives. 

 But when we delay in taking action or refuse to face the fear, it depletes our passion for living.  It is one of the biggest obstacles we humans have to face and which, if ignored, intensify in strength. 

 All of us have hurtful memories from the past. Most fears stem from our belief system instilled in us as a child by our parents, teachers, siblings, friends, etc..  In order to protect ourselves from repeating these painful experiences again, we build up our defenses—very often we cling to old habits and patterns because breaking free of old habits can actually feel like we’re dying.  Nothing stops us from letting go of these useless patterns but it can take some of us years before we can actually let the old self-die.  Symptoms of fear can cause ulcers, nausea, tightness in the chest and back and neck, an uneasy mind, sweating and a rapid heartbeat. 

 To master our fear we must take it in hand and resist succumbing to its panic—if we give away our power to fear, we become its puppet.

  

TRANSFORMING FEAR INTO UNDERSTANDING

 Meditation can gently steer us away from our thoughts and emotions and put us back in charge of our lives—it helps to restore our relationship with ourselves and put us back on the ground.  This is a wonderful awareness/relaxation exercise I received from a wonderful friend many years ago.  It teaches you to transform the stresses in your life by changing the way you look at them.  

 Begin to observe yourself day to day so that you are able to see when fear is approaching from a distance or catch it happening.  Then accept it!  If you fight it or try to suppress it or get angry at yourself for reacting to it, you’ll get more tense and lose more energy.  Just recognize and allow yourself to feel the symptoms in your body.

 Fear causes us to tense up, when you feel this happening, consciously begin to relax by breathing more slowly and deeply.  Your emotions are intimately connected to your breathing patterns—by changing your pattern, you will quickly be able to change any train of thought, even a stressful one.  A change in breathing also changes the physical responses that go with emotional or mental tensions, such as tightness in the abdomen or shoulders.

 The beauty of it is that deep breathing can be practiced anywhere without anyone even noticing—at work, while traveling, or in a situation of confrontation.  So when you feel your body beginning to experience fear, immediately begin to take long, deep, regular breaths.

 The natural way of breathing when relaxed is deeply and steadily—just watch a sleeping child or an animal at rest.  As you breath more deeply you will feel refreshing because you are taking in more energy/oxygen/prana.  You will also feel calmer and more objective and able to deal with the situation more efficiently.

 Recognize whether you are experiencing a fight response or a flight response, and see if you can change your thinking/attitude about the situation.

 Recognize what you want from the situation and are not getting, and see if you can drop that desire.  Accept what is actually happening, rather than trying to fight mentally and emotionally for what you want to have happen.

 Examine your daily routine to see if you are creating physical situations that predispose you to experience fear, stress or tension.  For example, you will be more likely to feel tension if any of the following are true:  you are overtired from lack of sleep; *you have overeaten or eaten the wrong kinds of food or too late at night; you have taken too many stimulants, such as coffee, alcohol, or cigarettes; you habitually overwork; you don’t get enough play and recreation; or you don’t get enough fresh air and exercise.

 (*Try not to eat when you’re angry, excited, tense, depressed, upset, on the run or tired.  Wait until your mind becomes calm and your ‘natural’ hunger returns.  When your tense the hunger you feel isn’t true hunger…it’s mentally induced hunger, designed as an outlet for your nervousness and anxieties.  True hunger arises only when you are relaxed.)

 See where you can make changes—small ones, one at a time.  Don’t take on too much!  Just regulate your sleep, for instance, or try walking instead of driving once in a while to get more fresh air and exercise.

 Incorporate some specific physical and mental techniques into your daily schedule, such as walking, meditation, or sports.  Also take time out to lie down and relax deeply once a day for fifteen to twenty minutes.

HEALING FOODS AND SUPPLEMENTS

 “Not only does your food consist of “energy, frequency, and vibration,” but its energy is also always in motion. Beneath the surface of that red apple on your kitchen counter or the buttered toast on your breakfast table exists a river of energy force fields that swirl into form, dissolve, and coalesce once again. All life is energy, and in every moment, we’re immersed in a great ocean of it. It’s constantly ebbing and flowing in constant, ever-changing currents that pulsate through time and space. In every morsel of food you eat, there’s an infinite, yet patterned, timeless cosmic order of waves of pulsating electrons that spiral in and out of existence, which have a profound impact on your body and on your life.” The Mystic Cookbook – Eat for Enlightenment ~ By Denise Linn and Meadow Linn

 The Mystic Cookbook video – how to create a chakra meal and so many more http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aOjEccORdW4&feature=youtu.be

More Mystic Cookbook Videos http://www.youtube.com/user/TheMysticCookbook

 Peptic Ulcer  http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/peptic-ulcer/DS00242/DSECTION=treatments-and-drugs

 Glutamine for stomach ulcers http://www.livestrong.com/article/487930-glutamine-for-stomach-ulcers/

 Stomach ulcers and probiotics http://www.livestrong.com/article/475443-stomach-ulcers-probiotics/

Fenugreek for stomach ulcers http://www.livestrong.com/article/471095-fenugreek-for-stomach-ulcers/

Tumeric for stomach ulcers http://www.livestrong.com/article/467947-turmeric-for-stomach-ulcers/

All kinds of links re: stomach ulcers http://www.livestrong.com/stomach-ulcers/

 

Stay tuned for the next upcoming article – Metaphysical Causes of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) where we continue to discuss more metaphysical information on the stomach/solar plexus area.

“The stomach and esophagus come together at the bottom end of our ribcage, beneath our heart…..that’s why when it hurts, we call it heartburn. Heartburn can happen from an attack on our self esteem, a feeling of being trapped, competitiveness, a hostile environment, or anxious and overwhelmed by responsibilities.  Chronic anxiety and worry is closely associated with ulcers and is associated with perfectionism.  Perfectionists are very hard on themselves and others, demanding the best at all times.  They find fault in almost everything they do—they’re appearance, their homes, relationships, children, clothes, cars—they can frustrate us to no end with their constant bickering and never-ending insistence that everything has to be perfect.

Perfectionists suffer from a lack of safety,never letting their guard down because if not, all hell will break loose. Their insecurities come from (to be continued………”)

ravenstarshealingroom@gmail.com

 

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The astral body can be thought of as a field of energy occupying roughly the same space as the aura, but constantly shaped and reshaped by patterns of thought and feeling. All images, words, and sensations affect this body, and are affected by it in turn; it interacts freely with the astral level of the cosmos, and with the astral bodies of other human and non-human beings. It contains most of those parts of the self we normally think of as “mental” or “inner”— intellect, emotion, imagination, will, and memory, the instruments of concrete consciousness — and it is also the basis for the individual personality.***

The mental body can be thought of as the essential pattern of the Soul. It can be described as a subtle “body” only in a highly metaphorical sense, and cannot be located in a spatial sense at all. This body is the instrument of abstract consciousness — that is, thought that does not involve forms and images of the sort we perceive with our senses — and thus makes it possible to perceive the core ideas or structures of experience, which exist outside of space and time.

http://www.plotinus.com/subtle_bodies_copy.htm

The etheric, astral and lower mental bodies, all correlate with our physical existence on earth.  Each one of us is a unique human being, with particular personality characteristics and a spiritual essence or soul.

The astral reacts to emotions, feelings, and memories that are recorded and triggered in and from the etheric field, which impregnates every cell, tissue and organ in the physical body.  The etheric field, apart from the astral body has it own nervous system which is composed of a vast network of energy lines colored with violet or gray forces of light that surround and interpenetrate the body anchoring itself in the heart, the brain, and spleen of the physical body. Every cell within the human body is permeated and enclosed by this etheric matter. The tiny vessels called nadis are similar to the nerves of the body except that they are exposed and vulnerable to the slightest vibration.  As these webs of energy known as the nadis or etheric nerves  criss-cross one another they form  major cross-over points that look similar to the hub of a wheel.  These major crossover points connect and breathe life into the 7 major chakras, which also underlie and control the endocrine glands.  

The astral body, (called the desire body or field of senses) is not only a reflector of your feelings and emotions, it is also your relations to people, animals, plants, your environment and the universe.  The astral field surrounds and envelopes the etheric field, extending as far out as a foot or so from the physical body, it is filled with colors, textures and shapes, constantly expanding and contracting, depending on a person’s mood and emotional state.  If we could see the emotional richness of this field, it would be a wondrous display of flowing colors, changing at the slightest shift in one’s mood and behavior.  

Have you ever thrown a small stone into a pool and watched as it gently disturbed the surface the water?  It sends out waves of ever-increasing circles, radiating out in all directions…..If more than one stone was thrown, the waves would splash in all directions….anyone close to that particular shore would have a good chance of getting wet.  This is one example the astral can affect others energy.  But there is another way too.  The waves from the water also sends out sounds or vibrations ….concentric circles resonating through the air.  If the sound of the stone was loud hitting the water, the vibrations in the air would be fast and erratic…a whirlwind of energy.  Just imagine how far those vibrations could go!

The astral field can be cluttered with passions, experiences, worries, regrets, negative self-images, memories, actions, reactions, emotions, analyses, hopes and fears.  From the time we learnt to express ourselves verbally, we have struggled to find words that would express our feelings that would be ‘acceptable’ to our friends, parents and teachers.  We began to wear masks to disguise our true feelings from others, to protect ourselves from criticism and disapproval.  Every time we do or say anything or have anything done or said to us, we add another distraction and our true self gets buried deeper and deeper.  The more we hold in and hold back our thoughts and feelings, this flux of energy can have a direct affect on the body’s nervous, endocrine, muscular and immune system.  

(Interestingly, the word endocrinology comes from the Greek words meaning ‘within’ and ‘I separately’ and this truly explains the role it plays in our lives.  Each of these centers has a symbolic meaning….looking at the seven endocrines from the top of the head down,  the pituitary is  considered the ‘master gland’, the pineal is known as the ‘third eye’, the thyroid represents ‘our power to choose’, the thymus is ‘the director of the immune system’, the adrenals are called the’ fight/flight center’, and the testes (male) and ovaries (female) continue our existence as a species. 

“It is…known that the most powerful chemical created in the body come from..[the] endocrine glands.  Likewise, it has been found that each is a neurohormonal transducer—able to convert electrical energy in to hormonal energy, and vice versa.  A neuro-hormone is a hormone that affects nervous system function or a hormone released due to nerve stimuli.” William A. McGarey, M.D.

“Whatever electricity is to man, that’s what the power of God is.  Man may in the material world use God-force, God-power or electricity…..” Edgar Cayce  

I’m getting a little ahead of myself here in regards to the nervous system, endocrines, chakras and aura, which we will look at in detail later.  But I felt it was important to have some understanding of the endocrine glands, which are both physical and spiritual ‘beings’.  These 7 spiritual/glandular centers have a consciousness of their own and each is related to the other 6 through our nervous system and the hormones in the blood.  Each one of us has a ‘group’ of amazing consciousnesses inside our being….each with its own history and experiences.  And, each center has its own attitude, responses, feelings and works differently in any given situation.  It is the nervous system and these seven areas of consciousness that make each of us unique, showing how we’ve communicated with spirit flowing through our bodies.  Carl Jung was one the first to see and understand this, birthing the concept of  ‘the archetypes’.  

“….the easiest way to work with the chakras physically and through their associated endocrine glands.  Each chakra is affiliated with a specific gland.  Endocrine glands produce hormones, substances that stimulate growth and development.  There are nearly 100 known hormones in the body.  Working with a chakra through diet, intentional healing, holistic processes, and other means can create optimum function for the related gland and the entire region related to that chakra.” Cyndi Dale 

As well, clairvoyants, healers and those developing a greater spiritual awareness are aware of the subtle fields and energy patterns that reflect what may be happening or what’s about to happen to a client’s physical and emotional levels.  Just as an illness can manifest in the subtle bodies, healing too often comes through the subtle fields before it can manifest in the physical, which is why many healers work, at least partly in the aura, without laying their hands directly on the physical body.  Sensing the subtle fields gives us a clue of problem areas that are excessive, weak, tense, blocked or held in by the client.  Healing relaxes, de-stresses and unclutters the mind.

Most of us are awkward in expressing our feelings at one time or another.  The reason is that we rehearse in our minds what we want to say before we say it.  The complexity involved with talking this over within ourselves is happening so fast we’re not even aware of it.  The problem with this is that we usually lose touch with the original, basic feeing that emotionally motivated us in the first place.  So when we express something different than what we originally felt, a split occurs between the body, mind, and our feelings and expressions.  

When two people interested in each other, come together, they immediately create and project hair-thin threads of auric energy.  These threads connect the two auras, feeding emotions and data from one to the other.  All communication between the connected individuals is accomplished through the subconscious mind and telepathy.  But when we are not expressing our true feelings, we are not being real, authentic, other people can feel this on a subtle level though they don’t interpret the feeling consciously.  

“The electromagnetic field that surrounds your Earth and moves through the entire universe is continually adjusted and affected by your every move, thought, and action. Thus you are part of the intricate web of energy that flows through the entire cosmos. As you can effect the energy of the entire cosmos, so too you can effect the energy of each other. You have the ability to send love to the farthest reaches of creation and at the very moment that you send the energy, your intention makes it so. Therefore in this way you move in unison with each other co-creating harmony or discord within the turning cycles of creation.” http://www.newagevillage.com/wiki/index.php/Healing_As_Energy_Transfer

This puts you right smack in the intricate web of energy that flows through the entire cosmos. Something so simple as an act of kindness will pulse along this intricate net of connections, sending and spreading positive feelings in all directions.  

*I still remember when I was in the ER with my oldest son who had accidentally stepped on an old rusty nail.  The wound had been cleansed and we were waiting for the nurse to give him a tetanus injection.  On the other side of the room was a woman crying and sitting all alone.  I felt so sad that I couldn’t do anything for her.  On impulse I sat beside her and held her hand.  I still remember the smile that arose upon her face, her eyes all watery.  The woman seemed so relieved, so happy.  I thought, I would cry too.  Words simply cannot explain what happened that day.  All I can say is that I’ve never looked upon simple touch as so simple after all.  When I spoke of this to my healing teachers and friends, they said healing energy was being transferred to the woman.  But I see it differently.  We are all energetically interconnected, there is no separation.  Energy is what we are and when we learn to dance with the energy and share it with others, this is what truly makes us what we truly are.  So don’t be afraid to ask others if they need a hug.  And don’t be afraid to ask if you need one.  And even beyond touch, don’t be afraid to smile and say hello to strangers walking past.  As a society we need to move beyond the fear we have toward each other.   

Emotions are what God used when creating the Universe.  Without emotions, art, music, the stars, singing birds, earth, angels and you would not exist.  The word emotion comes from the Latin meaning ‘to move out from’.  Energy must be free to flow in order for love to exist.  Just as the blood in your veins needs to flow in order to keep you alive, energy, e-motion, needs to flow to keep your soul qualities of love, health, abundance and creativity alive within in you.  

If you think about it, everything you desire is tied up in your emotions.  All the joy, all the abundance, all the love and all the peace, energy, enthusiasm and playfulness are all part of emotion.  When you suppress your feelings of sadness, grief, anger and pain, you also suppress the love and joy along with them.  Emotion is the key to creation and an important step in becoming your higher self.  

Suppressing your emotion will not make it go away.  The stagnated emotion will reside in your auric field, in the muscles and cells of your body…and begin to make up your energy.  This core energy has a resonance, and this will in turn begin to resonate with similar energy patterns.  These energies can be events or other people.  So no matter how you try you will not succeed in escaping the pain…you’ll take it with you wherever you go and possibly increase the load as years go by.  

I have learned that as soon as something starts to go ‘wrong’ in my life, it means that I am no longer in the upward spiral.  Almost every time something isn’t working for me it has lead to a release of something, and mostly it meant forgiving someone else and myself in the process.  I’ve also learnt that the release and expression of emotion is the key to allowing more love, joy and abundance in my life, I have also learned there is a fine balance between delving into my past and staying in it.  

One of the issues that everyone faces when clearing up their emotional debris is how to let go of the situation and the beliefs surrounding it.  To do this we have to understand the ‘mind’ and the mind isn’t just in the brain but in every part of the body.  It is constantly recording stimuli and input and experience.  The mind is the seat of all our beliefs, perceptions, experiences, memories and aspirations.  It is the most powerful tool we have in our possession and also the most difficult one to control.  A portion of the mind, is also connected to the autonomic nervous system which is always active, even while asleep, giving us the gift of life by keeping our organs and systems working together, by controlling our circulatory system, breathing, heart-rate, blood pressure, etc.   The autonomic is also the domain of your unconscious mind, your dreams and all your memories of present and past lives.  We’ll explore all this in Part IV of the Subtle Anatomy, the Causal Body. 

Within the soul and higher self lay all the answers as to why an event, relationship or circumstance happened and the reason why.   

“The key to healing lies in the unconscious.  If we can become aware of the memories stored in our bodies and bring them to mind, we can gain a different, nonrational understanding of how the past influences the present and our conscious minds and actions.  We can do it if we learn to tap into what I call the intuition network, to help us envision and create healthier lives, instead of allowing old memories and patterns of behavior to continue re-creating painful experiences.” Mona Lisa Schulz

***

footnote…

*The skin really is the body of the soul.  It is actually one of the richest sources of all the hormones found in the body.  So when we stimulate the skin we can cause a shower of healing chemicals into our blood stream.  One of the most important of these are growth factors or growth hormones.  By simply stimulating the skin we can produce these growth factors or hormones right into our blood stream.  Like the other organs, the skin is also the seat of emotions.  When we are deeply moved we say we were deeply touched.  We describe situations as sticky, ticklish or thorny, all these have to do with sensations in our body.  Therefore the experience of touch or sensation linked to a thought is really what an emotion is.  Once again, we can influence emotions, feelings and desires through our skin as a result of the release of these hormones.)

Great links…

http://www.kenpage.com/articles/creation.html

http://www.pathwaytohappiness.com/

http://www.energyenhancement.org/chakras/Chakra_general/elements%20of%20chakras.html#ten

 

 

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From the time you were born, you never had to learn how to breathe, circulate your blood, digest your food, eliminate toxins or heal your body because the etheric field and/or life force within and around us carries all these complex processes out until we die. This vital field speaks to us through the sympathetic nervous system, our intuition and our inner sense of knowing. Its main purpose is to protect and buildup the physical body.  But this isn’t its only function.  Not only does it integrate the mind/body connection, it guides us to our most subtle expression, the spirit within us.

“……man moves in a whirlpool of forces of all types and qualities and is related to all other energies in the universe. This connection is made by what is called his etheric body, which is of much less dense physical matter, and is a mould and surround to the physical body itself. It has many functions in relation to its denser counterpart. It stores up radiatory light and heat for controlled transmission to the physical body; it forms a barrier between the physical and the dangerous astral planes which can only be transcended when consciousness is sufficiently developed to permit escape. The dense physical body composed of atoms, each with its own energies, light and force, is held together by and is expressive of the energies which compose the etheric body.  It is therefore not unexpected that disorders of the etheric body have dire physical consequences. Indeed etheric congestion may lead to many forms of disease and of mental illness……The etheric body is really composed of a network of fine channels or lines of force, and there are points where these lines cross one another and thus form centres of energy. Where many such lines of force cross each other is a large centre of energy, and where great streams of energy meet and cross, as they do up the spine and in the head, there are the seven major centres.”  ALICE BAILEY

 We are and have been discovering the etheric field is a powerhouse of energy. It stores up radiatory light and heat and feeds this to the human form in an even and controlled manner. The body’s crystallized form is composed of atoms, each with it own energies and is held together by and through the make-up the etheric body. It governs and functions all our organs and respiratory, circulatory, digestive, glandular, endocrine and nervous systems. Etheric congestion can lead to disease and mental illness. Therefore, everything that affects the body must pass through this field first. Some of the information contained in this field enters our awareness through our senses, thoughts and intuition. But some of the information stays hidden, affecting the choices we make and our physical body.

 “The unfoldment of the human consciousness is a gradual process of the accumulation of many lifetimes that are recorded and stored within the etheric body; an overlay of life after life, of being after being, and the realization that these lives are in themselves the sum total of all the energies body, mind and spirit intermingled into one whose main intent is to create and to manifest on the earth plane. These energies and forces, are activated and remembered through the universal archetypes and through  symbolic forms.” ravenstar

 The potential for everything we are meant to be is already imprinted into our etheric body at the moment of conception.

 “Conception is the bridge between the absolute and the relative, between that which is beyond time, space and matter and that which is in time, space and matter.  Crossing this bridge demands a commitment to being here and to participate full in life.” Debbie Shapiro

 Once the fetus begins to grow, the spine in the etheric and physical world is the first to develop, which is followed by the rest of our skeletal structure. Robert St. John states, “Our bones portray the primary pattern of that with which we started life at conception…containing the inherited traits, karmic patterns and all other factors which are imposed or drawn into the new life.  The spine is the centre of this structure.”

 In the beginning, the interplay of these energies were hard for me to understand and I couldn’t help wondering how anyone would be able to functionor even integrate such an erratic barrage of information.  Then one day I watched a friend gift-wrap a present and with a finishing touch, add a lovely ribbon.  I saw the force of these energies come intoplay.  Symbolically, when we gift wrap a present and tie it with a ribbon we are taking the lines of force and bringing them together.   What we have done is formed a cross with a bow in the center that sets into motion these contrary forces.  It also resembles the soul’s journey through the elements of life.  It is the dual motion of spirit and matter, the journey of the soul into human life.

 Now take this same analogy and apply it to the web of a spider upon a branch of a tree. Instead of seeing the web lying flat upon its surface see thethreads surrounding and engulfing its foundation.  To protect its home from the elements of life the spider weaves and joins the opposite sides together in an orderly manner, joining them at different intervals of the branch. These lines of force would travel up the spine or center of the branchbut not within it and would create several stages of force and energy that would bind and hold the web and branch together.  These centers of force would be tested again and again throughout the various seasons and the spider would have to time and time again make adjustments to these lines of force synchronizing and balancing them to the raging winds, pouring ran, and electrical storms that threaten to tear it from its foundation.

The etheric field then acts as a receiver, assimilator and a transformer.  As a transformer it steps down these highly charged currents of energy, interpreting and intuitively guiding us on our own personalized path of healing and well-being. This vital field, ‘hears’ things, ‘knows’ things, and ‘senses’ what should come next.   It knows your hopes and wishes for the future and an accumulation every lifetime and everything you did in the past.  It is the outer expression of our being and a direct reflection of our inner experiences.  All this remains with us, good and bad until
we choose to change the balance of our present and future thoughts.

“In every created thing on earth there is an internal and an external; one of these is not given without the other, so there is no effect without a cause…..The external is estimated from the internal and not the reverse.” Emmanuel Swedenborg

THE LOWER SELF OR PERSONALITY

Every person on the earth adjusts and reacts to the inflowing energies from the universe in a manner characteristic with the make-up (persona) of his or her own personality, according to their level of awareness or consciousness.

 Your basic personality is influenced by the first three subtle fields, the etheric, astral and lower mental body.  These fields do not represent the ‘real’ human being, they are reflections of it.  Though these three distinct fields interpenetrate each other, they vibrate at different frequencies, each one vibrating a little more than the last, creating a graphic expression or mould of the physical body. This crystallized design steps down the electrical vibration of the cosmic world and prevents the full expression of the soul.

 The shape of your human form reflects an array of basic behaviors (habits, thoughts, feelings, actions) from your past and present life.  It mirrors your subconscious needs for security, safety, nourishment and bonding and manifests in the real world for the need of logic, order and structure in your life, as well as orienting you to a specific time and place and the development of your five senses.

 Your inner life, feelings and responses to others are all formed in the ego’s struggle to maintain control.  As well, creative energy and ambition have motivated you to take risks and explore new ideas.  Courses of interest excite and expose you to new ideas and theories; they stimulate your plans for the future.  So you can see, with the ego, it reflects both sides of the coin.

 So the three lower energy fields are the driving force of your life, their desire is to guide, control or direct and all of this is usually happening below your level of awareness.  They are, what was mentioned a moment ago, as the ego.  I’ve refrained from using this word (ego) because of our misunderstanding of it.  I remember going to a spiritual retreat in the mid 90’s.  The overall chant of the class was ‘abolish the ego’.  Somehow this didn’t sit right with me.  Our ego represents our identity, our ability to make decisions and reach our personal and full potential.  The lower self truly is very complex and needs to be strongly in place before the higher subtle fields can be understood and explored.  Without an identity, the foundation upon which it sits would crumble.

Each of us possess the identity of an individual soul that agreed to the arduous task of a long and ultimately triumphant journey towards the Light/God.  In order to make the journey we were given freewill to choose our own way.  Any suffering along the way is either caused from our lack of awareness, our ravaging thoughts or karma.

THE POWER OF THOUGHT

 Your thoughts are just that, your thoughts.  They knowing nothing for themselves because all that they are is just movements and patterns.  And these movements and patterns can distract us, especially when we are confused by pain and fear.   Our thoughts are by their very nature, restless and searching, when in this state they can prevent the mind from seeing the truth objectively and from making the right decisions.  A ceaseless barrage of thoughts can pull us apart, criticize and put us down.

This past article on my blog may interest you.  If the link doesn’t work, go to October 2010, Counting Your Thoughts,

https://ravenstarshealingroom.wordpress.com/2010/10/11//”>Counting-Your-Thoughts  it’s a meditation actually geared to watching ‘all’ your thoughts rather than ignoring them.

“Hopefully this exercise will help you to realize you are not these thoughts and feelings. Your undivided attention gave you power over them…..These needs, angers, desires, delights, guilt’s, don’t own you. You own them and you can easily learn to watch them with interest and let them go.” ravenstar

 THE POWER OF EMOTIONS

 The astral field has to do with our emotions.  Very often we cannot express our feelings to those closest to us because we are afraid of their reactions.  We fear being misunderstood and misinterpreted.  We fear being hurt, ridiculed, criticized, judged and we fear being wrong.  This is when we either close down and pull away or find someone else, a third party, to complain to.

 Yet how often are we able to listen to others without judging.  How often do we start by listening then jump in with our own reactions, defences and justifications?  How often have you been able to hear a person out, letting them express what their feeling, before making a comment?  We’re all guilty of it.

 “If you really want to hear someone when they trust you enough to talk to you, don’t listen to the words, hear how the words are spoken.  All too often, we cannot hear the words because we come to the conversation with our own ideas about who people are.  At the same time, we are determined not to let them see who we are.  In order for effective and valued communication to occur, you must believe that you are safe, and you must offer that same safety to the other person.” Iyanta Vanzant

 We’ve actually begun to tap into the the higher subtle vibrations or mirror of the physical body.  But before we go any further, we need to understand our connection to Earth and the place we were born or feel a bond to.    Stay tuned to the next article “The Earth and You”

To be continued……

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“Many medical intuitives believe the initial stage of illness develops outside the body and filters down through the layers of the energy.  Each layer is associated with an aspect of consciousness (e.g. instinct, intellect, intuition, emotions)  Each layer of consciousness in the human energy field is considered a harmonic vibration.  Like keys on a piano keyboard, the frequency of the body’s vibration and those of the emotional, mental and spiritual fields are set at different octaves yet are within the harmonic range of each other.  If a thought coupled with an emotion is left unresolved, it can cause an imbalance within the layers of energy in the body.”  Brian Luke Seaward, Achieving the mind-body-spirit connection. 

We are now reaching a new level of consciousness that is forcing us to look at reality and, to feel  things about it.  We are discovering that emotion is a largely unexplored dimension of our lives. We are learning that when we feel something deeply enough, we can bring it to life, give it form and substance, and prosper from it in ways we’ve never dreamed before.  We are learning that our main responsibility lies in learning how to listen to the body and to its reactions.

Confronting our beliefs, doubts, confusion and emotions/feelings, is an important step in our journey towards wholeness. With this realization comes the hope, strength and opportunity to step forward and create ourselves anew.  Healing is all about participating in our own process. We all have body/medical intuition, it’s just developing the framework to help us understand what it means.  It doesn’t matter how old or young you are, the body knows what to do, it has a tremendous capacity to repair and heal.  All that’s required is your commitment and motivation to heal.

All different kinds of illness whether their aches or pains, chronic illness, or even illnesses that are life threatening are teaching and showing us that something we are doing, thinking, or saying or acting on, is comprising who we truly are.   What illness is really trying to tell you is STOP!  STOP and look at where you are!  Stop and look at the quality of your thoughts and beliefs.  Are they in alignment with who you are and are they driven by the intentions of the heart and soul?

Thoughts have energy, emotions have energy and your beliefs have energy.  If there’s something you’re feeling guilty about or wish you hadn’t done, you’re unknowingly beating yourself up and this can overtime, manifest in some form of energy congestion and then ultimately land somewhere in the body.  The whole process of our human existence is to create thought that is reflective of our own individuality, authenticity, and truth.  It is not about trying to live by someone else’s thoughts and beliefs.  If we eat ourselves up or talk poorly to ourselves or allow childhood wounds and traumas to run our life, ultimately these will show up in the physical body.

Everything that affects you must first pass through your aura and then through the chakras or wheels of energy that surround and interpenetrate your physical body. Chakras literally mean ‘wheels of fire’.  They appear to the psychic as rapidly turning pools of light.  Though not actually in the physical body the main 7 chakras are radiated from the spinal region, each flaring at the front of the body like great flowering trumpets.  Information received through the aura and chakras enters into your awareness through your senses thoughts and intuition.  These centers are constantly recording and downloading your emotional experiences.  So the aura and the body are in constant communication with one another.

 Few of us understand what our body is feeling at any given moment. Tension, pain, illness, hiccups and goosebumps are all bodily words.  When we feel these bodily sensations, we usually ignore them or take a pill and carry on with what we were doing….unaware that these bodily signals are our teacher and guidance system.

 “The inability to talk about emotions that you feel intensely will usually get transformed into a symbolic language of symptoms and eventual illness in the body.”  Mona Lisa Schulz

 Physical symptoms are never the first signs of illness, but the last…they can sound/feel similar to the whining of a tired and irritable child…these are your body’s cries of distress…something you can’t ignore. But remarkable things can happen if you can get beyond the irritating demand for attention and reach out to the wounded child underneath, who so desperately needs your understanding and unconditional love.

 The following exercises are designed to initiate a dialogue with one’s body.  Hearing what the body is trying to tell you requires great patience and practice.  The intention is not to make your pain go away.  Pain as mentioned, is actually your body’s guidance system ‘showing’ you a situation that needs to be taken care of.  When we acknowledge pain, it can be transformational, creating new attitudes towards ourselves and others, increasing our spiritual understanding, deepening the feeling side of life, producing changes in our relationships, our careers and even society itself.

 The seventeenth-century philosopher Spinoza once wrote: “Suffering ceases to be suffering as soon as we have formed a clear and precise picture of it.”  When we shed light on our emotions, energy floods into the body allowing us to review things.

EXERCISE ONE

 ENERGY CLEANSING OF THE PHYSICAL AND SUBTLE BODIES

 As you lie in bed, before you go to sleep, take time to feel your physical body.  How does it feel?  Are there any parts that you are particularly aware of?  Are these parts still connected with any events of your day?

Take time to feel your emotional body.  Are there any feelings in it that disturb you?  How are they connected in the events of the day?  Be aware of what you need to learn, so that these emotions can be released.

Take time to feel your mental body.  Are there any thoughts running through your mind that are connected with the events of your day?  Finish them and let them go…..good night and pleasant dreams.

 EXERCISE TWO

DIALOGUE WITH YOUR BODY ABOUT ILLNESS AND HEALTH

 (It’s probably best to read this over, make it your own and tape with your own voice…you may want to have a pad of paper and pen close by during or after the meditation)

 Let your body relax and sink into the chair you are sitting on….letting your eyes close or keeping them focused on one particular spot in order not to be distracted by anything going on outside you….letting the sound of your voice guide you gently into the center of your inner being….attuning yourself to the world within….becoming aware of your breathing as the natural rhythm of your body…breathing in…and breathing out…moving ever deeper to the center of your being…listening to the voice of your body….letting all the voices that have been demanding your attention fade into the background until they are no more than distant echoes. (Pause for 20 seconds).

 As you move more and more deeply into the region of your inner self, become aware of seeing your body from within rather than without….like when you look in a mirror.  As you become aware of your body within, pay attention to your breathing, breathing in and out in a natural regular rhythm.  Your breathing is you.  Feel a unity with your breathing.  Feel a unity with your body.  (Pause for 30 seconds)

 Feel the solidness beneath you for miles and miles.  Shift your attention to the top of your head….Sense with your head the space between you and the ceiling to the infinite edge of the universe.  Come back now to the room and notice the space around you…the forms, the colors the people.  Pay attention now to the sounds around you, the sounds outside.  Now pay attention to the sounds within you…sense your heart beating.  (Pause for 30 seconds)

 Now move your attention throughout your body, checking your sensations all through your body beginning with the top of your head.  Notice first your scalp, the feeling of your hair on your head.  Now pay attention to your forehead; experience any tension there.  Focus on your eyelids against your eyes, your nose, your tongue, your lips, your neck, the back of your neck, right shoulder, left shoulder, your back against the chair.  Notice the sensations in your chest, your breast, your stomach, your lower back, your hips, your genitals, your thighs, your knees, your calves, the feel of your feet on the floor, your right arm, your left arm, you hands in your lap….(Pause for 30 seconds)

 Now move your attention through your body at your own pace.  Stop and pay attention to any place where there is special tension or discomfort or lack of ease.  Focus on the sensation in this special place or places in your body.  Hold your attention there.  Hold.  (Pause for 30 seconds)

 Now become the sensation in that part of your body.  Identify yourself with it.  Amplify it.  If it is tense, allow it to feel even more tense.  If there is an ache, let the ache increase.  You want to hear the body’s message loud and clear.  Amplify it; experience it clearly and unmistakably. (Pause for 1 minute)

 This sensation is your friend and it’s telling you something.  Now put some questions to it.  It may not answer verbally.  Perhaps when you question the sensation, some images will come to mind, and you’ll have a feeling related to the sensation, or it will connect with something in your life, our you’ll have an intuition. (Pause for 1 minute)

 Now get into that sensation and ask:  Why are you feeling like this?  What’s your concern?  What’s on your mind?  If I changed something in my life, would you change your tune? (Pause for 2 minutes)

 Amplify the sensation again.  And beware of images that come to mind or connections and feelings related to your life and experience.  Amplify and have your radar out for the over-tones and what your body is telling you. (Pause for 1 minute)

 Again, direction your attention methodically to the sensations throughout your body from head to toe, until again your attention is stopped by a special sensation that summons your detailed attention to the message your body is sending you.  Don’t try to force anything, just be aware of what is there. (Pause for 1 minute)  Is there anything that surprises you?  Listen to what your body needs from you in the future…let the dialogue flow freely.

When you are finished, take a deep breath, relax your focus and when ready, come back to the room you are in and slowly, gently open your eyes.  You may want to write what you saw or heard or felt …letting your pen simply record what is there without censoring or interpreting.

*Pain is your friendly messenger bringing you very important news about your life situation.  The goal of this exercise is to magnify the voice of that friend so that you truly hear it, and so that it won’t have to shout even louder to get your attention.

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This is a continuation of the prior two articles “How Venus Influences Your Life”  and “Diabetes, The Imbalance of Sweetness in Your Life”.   We are focusing on hard aspects to the Moon and Venus, related to your self-esteem, self-worth, emotional self and deep-rooted past.

Re-visited from  the recent article “How Venus Influences Your Life”

“We can understand Venus as describing what we like, sort of what tastes good to us. But like sweet sugar in the mouth, the pleasure it gives is nice, but might not be very fulfilling. The Moon describes what feeds us. Therefore, it is important that we understand the relationship between Venus and the Moon in our natal charts. If the two are in conflict, extra attention may need to be paid to make sure that pleasure feeds us, rather than leaving us undernourished. by Jeff Jawer 

In this particular post, we are looking at an astrological study of two natal charts, focusing on the Moon and Venus.  Both individuals were born with Juvenile Diabetes.  Both natal charts are years apart.

It was interesting when looking  at these charts that each individual’s Moon was situated in Gemini.  The choice choosing the charts was totally at random, my brother Leonard, and a young woman Aleisha (not her real name).

Aleisha’s Moon is situated in Gemini, her Venus in Aquarius.   Interestingly, both Leonard’s Moon and Venus  sit in Gemini.  Gemini is a masculine, mutable airy sign, whereas the Moon, associated with Cancer is feminine, cardinal watery sign.

The instability of Gemini coupled with the fluctuating nature of the Moon can show a mom who is a little too changeable and nervous.  Aleisha mentioned her mom always seemed to be in a hurry, going this way and that, never slowing down enough to play with her children.  “In fact, her mind at times, seemed scattered, hyper….it drove us crazy and made her irritable, antsy or upset.  She’d pick a fight with us for no logical reason other than to  release some of her pent-up tensions.”

Mutable signs (Gemini, Virgo Sagittarius, Pisces) of the zodiac can have their lives filled with sudden and unusual events and opportunities.  If they can flow with this energy great!  But if not, it can easily make one feel scattered, confused or frightened of it.

With Aleisha’s chart there are no hard aspects with her Moon, however Venus is a different story.  Venus conjuncts Mars as well as squares Pluto.   Aleisha suffers from ADHD a disorder that influences the way she learns, moves, relates to others and feels about herself.  She’s also a diabetic.

Leonard had many hard aspects to his Moon as well as Venus, which we’ll look at shortly.  In the past article we already looked at the influence of Venus in one’s chart.  Now  let’s take a quick look at how the Moon and the mother are directly connected.

Do you believe in past lives?  If you do, then you’ll also believe that at birth you inherit, bring or carry over certain patterns, expectations and beliefs from other lifetimes.  The Moon therefore represents our unconscious which houses memories and experiences from past lives and memories, experiences already gathered in this lifetime as well.

To get here and take your first breath, you need to spend a certain amount of time nestled and nurtured inside your mom- two souls simultaneously living in one body. All her thoughts, feelings, angers, fears, joys, inspirations and intimidation’s will have an effect on the health and welfare of your body – in fact your whole genetic structure!

From the moment of birth, the developing nervous system experiences and records our first major imprints, our most frightening profound (heart pounding memories of conditional love and intimacy.  The Moon therefore is our emotional self, our deep rooted past that extends back through childhood, through the maternal (mothering) influence and deeper into the cellular memories of your unconscious.

The Moon represents your unconscious instinctive behaviors that govern your basic habits and patterns (eating, sleeping, drinking, smoking, nutrition, etc.).  It represents everything that happened to you before this moment and how you feel about yourself now.

Now before I go any further, I don’t want all the mom’s out there to feel that this article is targeting them.  After all, I’m a mom too!  We aren’t just motivated by mom but our father (Sun) and  family as well. It’s just that mom is who we spent most of our time with and who we’re focussing on at this time.

Every experience, every reaction etched into your nervous system and into your personality will come back to haunt you later on in life.  Without an awareness of these, our daily energy  could end up tangled in past routines and behaviors.  Our minds are often driven by our past, our feelings, our needs, our hungers, and basic instincts.  Each lifetime is suppose to build on and evolve from what has happened before.

In a natal analysis, all signs, planets, aspects and houses should be considered to get a complete picture.  In this case we are looking at old patterns and unconscious responses that influence your emotions/feelings and self image about yourself…which also affects the pancreas…your emotional center that thrives on being understood, accepted and loved.  When the pancreas is functioning at its fullest, we feel good about ourselves….at its worst we feel emotionally sad, isolated or lonely.  Perhaps from an experience of losses in our lives.  To compensate for the lack of love, we overeat which forces the pancreas to produce more insulin.  So the pancreas’ main job is to maintain the right balance of sweetness/love in your life.

If you tend to look at yourself unlovingly or beat yourself up when things go wrong, take a look and see if there are any hard aspects to your Moon  and Venus.

WHAT ARE HARD ASPECTS

Hard aspects are your best friend!  They force you to look at and break old molds of the past, to conquer your fears and redeem and evolve your spirit. They force you into action.  But to do this we each have to fight for our lives by separating from our families (for a time) and the influence of the woman who gave us life. Individually we each have to figure this out for ourselves.  And one way of doing this, is looking at and studying our birth chart.

Aspects, especially hard aspects contain deep within their core a hidden gift or treasure.  The truth is available to you if you open yourself to it.  And opening to it can stop the vicious cycles you’ve been creating by understanding how to use their energy positively.

A QUICK LESSON ON CONJUNCTIONS  SQUARES AND OPPOSITIONS

CONJUNCTIONS

A conjunction is when two or more planets are in or very close to the same degree.  The planet(s) involved have no means of escaping the colors, qualities and characteristics of the other(s) which creates an unbreakable bond with each other.  An example of this could be likened to Siamese twins….what one twin wants, wills or desires will impact the other.   If they don’t agree, a struggle ensues until they compromise OR one or both surrenders to the other.

SQUARES

A square is an angle between two plants of approximately 90 degrees…..the planets are approximately at right angles to one another within a person’s natal chart.  This difficult and challenging aspect can block, impede, frustrate and hinder the planet(s) expression.  It’s  kind of like two people constantly aggravating, pushing and pulling each other because of their values and needs are different……they just don’t get along.

From studying different charts, I’ve seen two distinct types of squares emerge in a natal chart (and there’s probably more). The first one seems to originate from an individuals family history, background, habits and self image which is, in most cases poorly developed.  The individual finds him/herself having to perform under pressure; he/she can’t just be themselves.  Fear holds them back from exposing their true feelings…..fear of ridicule, judgment and isolation.  Therefore, he/she will tend to “overcompensate” the energies involved by being vain and  grandiose on the one hand, and touchy and combative on the other to defend their boundaries.

The second type of square deals with the outer world and what drives and pressures us to make a name for ourselves socially and publicly.  Depending on what planets are involved, reveals how far we will go to fulfill this need.  In some instances we will create conflicts, struggles and scraps with others to acquire the honor and prestige we crave.

Squares and conjunctions are usually seen expressed too forcefully, abruptly and often rooted in feelings of resentment and vulnerability.  We discussed resentment and vulnerability in the segment on Diabetes and in the one prior on how Venus influences our lives.

However, these aspects can be very dynamic and productive as well, if we constantly and continually work at it.  It is like having to work with a handicap, of having to constantly run uphill.  Both squares and conjunctions aren’t comfortable to have and they aren’t meant to be either.  They challenge you to the core.

OPPOSITIONS

An opposition is an angle between two planets of approximately 180 degrees where the planets literally oppose one another in your chart.  This aspect deals with difficult and challenging relationships as both planets strive to parade their own individual wares and won’t think twice about ‘shooting each other in the foot’ to prove it!

If you have oppositions in your chart, then you’ll find yourself dealing with relationship issues as oppositions have a tendency to release certain aspects of ourselves that we learned to repress as child.  We did this of course to be accepted and loved by others.   Oppositions are where we befriend our shadow side, the undeveloped and rejected aspects of ourselves.   Oppositions also force us to compromise  as each planet involved must be willing to accept each other on their own terms, without judging or trying to change the other.

What all this means is that oppositions will attract to you, people who seem to be overly independent or dependent, , selfish, whiny, fretful, anxious, insecure, restless, paranoid, jealous, possessive  and the list goes on and on.

What this challenging aspect wants is to develop empathy and compassion for another.  The opposing planets wants to awaken and integrate what we have denied in ourselves.

When we can do this, we’ll no longer need to get what is missing in ourselves from our relationships and we’ll no longer see each other as the enemy.

ALEISHA’S CHART

Aleisha has always been plagued with self-doubt and self-worth….at least that’s what she believes to be the case.  Her mind is always going, thinking of new and exciting ways to do something….she gets all enthused then bam, worries how mom will respond to these new ideals and finds herself at a crossroads.   What Aleisha is doing is seeing how mom will react before she makes any decisions.   How could Aleisha even predict her mom’s response?

VENUS SQUARE PLUTO

One attribute I’ve seen with this aspect is being afraid of authority figures and feeling or being over-powered by them. This aspect also cries of not feeling loved while growing up.  This placement can be cold and harsh at times.

Some people with Venus square Pluto remember mom and dad punishing them not because they did anything wrong but because the parent(s) displaced their anger on them.   Growing up in this kind of atmosphere the child developed a sensitivity and lack of trust to others and their immediate environment.  These children  learned to scan people and their surroundings for threatful conditions that they believed could harm and embarrass them.   It was also their way of staying clear of powerful people.

Stimulated by fear, Aleisha confuses caution for control.  Coupled with self-doubt and fear she soon loses sight of her goal.  This also explains the many projects never finished and dreams, insights  unrealized.

Venus/Pluto aspects relate to power, abuse, threats to relationships, betrayal, rage, jealousy, and possessiveness. Aleisha has difficulty trusting others because she was so deeply hurt when young and her love/innocence manipulated.

When a child senses rejection by a parent they start to reject certain aspects of them self.  This creates weaks spots in their development , buried needs and wants become split off from our emotions….they become wounds which aren’t healed but bandaged over.

Some people attract very controlling personalities with this aspect.  Robert Hand wrote PLANETS IN YOUTH (an astrologer’s bible) and explains this aspects superbly and mentions we may even choose friends who act destructively towards us.  “If this happens, it is only because you have a destructive attitude toward yourself.  Your inner psychological drives may also push you into unpleasant situations that you want to get out of but seem unable to.  This is why it is so important to understand yourself and not lose your perspective.  You always have a choice of walking away from a situation; you aren’t forced to be with anyone. 

Some people who master the energies of this aspect turn around and act destructively toward others, just as they were treated badly.  You should avoid that course because it will isolate you from others, and eventually you will be alone.”

Robert Hand also notes that this aspect “signifies that you will work out many of your most important psychological problems through  your relationships with others.”

VENUS CONJUNCT MARS

Similarities rang true with Venus square Pluto and Venus conjunct Mars.  Robert Hand explains that this particular aspect (Venus conjunct Mars) and relations with the opposite sex are important for our development.  He also mentions ‘parent of the opposite sex’ but  in this case Aleisha’s natal chart seemed directed right at the mother.

“It’s almost as if they reversed roles”, Aleisha said, “my mother exhibits and displays alot of male energy, my father’s appears more feminine.”

Reversing the parents roles,  helps us to understand Robert Hand when he writes….

 “The patterns of your relationship with that parent will be the basis of your relations with the persons of the opposite sex as you get older.  Unfortunately this aspect often means that you have mixed love-hate feelings for that parent.  If that is the case, you will run the risk, as an adult, of being drawn to people whom you know are not very good for you, but who fascinate you.”

Oh my god”, exclaimed Aleisha, “this is so true!”

Venus conjunct Mars square Pluto can make a person sexual alluring or sexually attractive to the opposite sex.  People with these aspects know they have this magnetic quality about them and they aren’t afraid to flaunt it.  But the feminine quality of Venus can be burned up by the masculinity of Mars.  For instance, Aleisha longs for a love that is secure but when she finds it, she either rebels against it or become too possessive, jealous and demanding, then she loses it.

All this is very confusing to Aleisha, it makes her frustrated, irritable, restless and dissatified with her life.  Binging on sweet foods, comfort and help to control her feelings from exploding, but it creates another problem, her body is suffering.  The more sweets she eats the more insulin the pancreas must produce and the more it produces the more her body stores fats.

Eating disorders are connected to issues of love, self-love, self denial, rejection, abandonment  and loss.  Let’s look at hard aspects to the Moon and how these can affect our life.

LEONARD’S CHART

Venus Square Jupiter

This aspect shows someone who is extravagant and overgenerous, in everything they do. They have a relentless and strong will that won’t back down possibly which could cause them to be in trouble with the law or authority figures. Leonard used to have fist fights with my dad.

Because of Jupiter’s tendency is to enlarge and expand,  your emotions lack depth, feelings are definitely a distraction, as they tend to interfere with your ability to function. Professional success is how you value yourself; you can be stubborn and inflexible; and a bit careless and indulgent. You may have trouble with your weight as you are addicted to rich food and a very sweet tooth.

 You are competitive and afraid how others see you, this can cause you to submerge your feelings even further as you work even harder to make a good impression on everyone. You fear being rejected and can be obsessed as to how you come across to others and what they think of you. Issues of being successful enough, competent and attractive enough continually replay in your mind.  Thinking everyone is eyeing you, you find it hard to express your own genuine feelings and even knowing what your own feelings are. Acting to maintain an image but not your own real needs and wants,  you are constantly adjusting your image to suit the moment.  One thing you are very good at is adapting easily into an environment.  You are extremely efficient at work and would do well in advertising and fashion.  Both these industries know how to package themselves and put together the ‘right look’.

Leonard had diabetes .. he expended way too much energy trying to be someone he was not.  Although outwardly it looked like he had it all together, inside there was a inner emptiness.  I’m sure that if he had lived passed his thirties, Len would of learned the rest of his chart and how to get in touch with his inner wisdom/child.

Venus Square Neptune

Neptune makes us extremely sensitive, our empathy and sympathy can wear down our emotional defenses and invites others in, leaving us very vulnerable to such things as bullying. Plus Venus square Neptune is always looking for the perfect friend/lover (fantasy) and this can overwhelm others…it’s like you want to get under their skin…to mesh with them. This can create tenseness in a relationship where at some point both people will need to reestablish themselves to get a sense of self by pulling away.  But when someone pulls away, the Venus square Neptune sees this as a rejection who has all but given of themselves to the other and now feels taken advantage of or even stabbed in the back.

Hmm self-negation…What do we do when others reject us….we try even harder for someone to like us. We forget who we are and do what makes others happy so they’ll love us. We suppress our feelings because we’re afraid of disapproval/rejection.  There is a tendency to misuse alcohol, making our desire to merge with another/others, even more intense.

People with this placement are easily deceived in love and may for example, marry an artist or someone ‘way out there’ without emotional stability or money. This reflects the Venus Square Neptune’s lack of perspective around emotions, finances and self-worth. If you own this placement, you also tend to be drawn to people who need extra love and care.  It is your hope that if these people appreciate your love, they won’t run away from you.

“People with Venus-Neptune contacts are inspired by beauty and peace. Commonly, they do not want to know about ugliness or discord. This applies to art, to music and to relationships.
The Venus-Neptune individual is invariably very romantic and idealistic about relationships. They are in love – so much so that there can be great difficulty in maintaining interest in, and commitment to, an ordinary person and the rigours and (let’s face it) unromanticism of the everyday domestic and habitual living with someone. Sue Tompkins ~ Aspects in Astrology

Famous people with Venus Square Neptune  http://astrologyforthesoul.com/billstreett/vennep.html 

“This aspect is often found in charts of spiritual students. An important incarnation for the individual has to turn deep desire for personal affection into a universal sense of love and compassion. Often personal affections bring disappointment or heartache. Person comes into life with a depleted spirtual bankbook where love is concerned. Does not attract love until his dues are paid. To overcome this aspect there must be a relinquishment of the desire for love; it must be replaced by being Love. In financial sense individual must learn practicality and caution. Could be loss through deception and by giving wrongly.” Isabel M. Hickey ~ “Astrology A Cosmic Science

Venus Square Chiron

My brother Leonard had three hard aspects to the planet Venus; the last one being “Chiron’s wound”. The wound centered around  abuse that started when he was a child, which seemed to cause problems in relationships as he grew older.  Any kind of abuse can make a child abandon their Inner Self – abuse as well can make any person or child more aggressive and extremely hostile. I wish I would have known him better; being 8 years apart, we were practically strangers to one another.

Looking at the many different different interpretations of Chiron square Venus, I came across one by Barbara Hand Clow who believed a person with this aspect has a ‘Gender Identity Crisis’.

“Chiron square Venus sets up the maximum stress between finding a value system which will enhance spirituality, or just giving oneself over to one emotional high after another. Also, Chiron square Venus usually signals heavy duty past life karmic pressure having to do with gender identity. In the esoteric teaching, we are taught that we choose a particular gender identity to balance male/female polarity, anima/animus polarity. Life is no more than an opportunity for experience so that we can become more evolved. And part of being able to become developed involves experiencing both sexes. Often when we are moving into a gender we are unused to there is a lot of stress, and Chiron square Venus indicates this type of stress. Thus, a person with many male past lives may be bom a female this time or vice versa, and this is often shown in the chart with Chiron square Venus. We also see this frequently when Mars is conjunct Venus in the natal chart. This client may be essentially male trying to cope with being female or vice versa, and astrologers can help the client with in depth Mars/Venus counseling. Often this native will cop out of sexual balancing by becoming gay or lesbian, although he or she might accomplish more by switching genders completely. Or, this native may appear to be gay or lesbian while actually being asexual and adjusting to the situation. In all cases, counseling on Mars/Venus energies in the chart will be most enlightening. The astrologer of Chart 22 has experienced deep emotional conflicts and a great struggle with her powerful animus within. The conflict will tend to resolve at the Uranus opposition. It is very likely she has powerful male past lives and that she is learning to use power with female or Venusian means this time.” Barbara Hand Clow ~ Chiron-Transforming Bridge Between the Inner and Outer Planets

My brother was in a mental institution when I was only twelve years old .. I had no idea if he suffered a ‘gender crisis’. I know he couldn’t hold down a regular job or cook or clean for himself and was in a group home for many years. He wanted nothing to do with parents which unfortunately also involved the whole family, myself included.

“Chiron-Venus people need to first heal their own deep fears of not being “good enough”. They need to learn to love themselves and to make sure their partners are meeting them halfway. They might also be attracted to partners who need help, but with the hard aspects, it might be hard to get back the same kind of attention or appreciation.”
http://www.cafeastrology.com/articles/chironaspects.html

The last time I spoke to Len was a month before he died from a diabetic coma.  He told me he was angry at himself for what he had done to himself. He realized he had wasted precious time, missed opportunities and fallen behind others, personally, socially and professionally.  He felt ashamed and noted his withdrawal from life was not a way to find himself.  He was terribly upset and full of self-doubt.  Leonard’s Chiron was located in Libra on the 9th house. Perhaps if he hadn’t died so young he would have healed his wound with Chiron and even found himself as a counselor, helping other couples heal relationships…thereby channeling Chiron’s energy in a more objective/productive way.

HARD ASPECTS TO THE MOON

The Moon’s role is to sustain and to nurture.  Its purpose is to protect and accept new experiences, new seeds for growth, new concepts for living.  It represents the archetypal mother whose sole aim is to embrace, nurture and protect.  In your natal chart the moon describes your early experience with maternal energy (your mother) the emotional impact she had on your life and how her presence or absence has shaped your concern for safety and protective boundaries.  Messages delivered early in your life have become the foundation upon which all future emotional responses are based.  Emotional fantasies as well as fears have been instilled here.  These fantasies and fears can save your life or hinder your progress – trapping you in habits of the past, you no longer accept new challenges our of fear of the unknown.  The moon in your natal chart is like a watchdog, always on guard to protect, and always needing to adapt according to your development level at the time.  The role of the mother is not to retard growth but protect without inhibiting development.  The moon can inhibit growth in its attempt to protect.  An attitude based on “what worked then will work now” may feel safe, but if you believe that, you stagnate.  The moon is concerned with instinctive emotional survival, yet survival is not growth.  A life built around survival becomes a life of stagnation, a cesspool of inactivity.

Harsh aspects to the moon suggest the difficulties you have accepting experiences or changes presented by the slower planets due to unpleasant memories from the past or lack of information. Squares and oppositions will make you confront difficult experiences in order to help you accept change with creativity and to teach you to let go of old patterns.   These aspects challenge you to break out of your old ways of responding and to accept the NEW challenges being introduced by the slower planets.  These planets and aspects want you to deal with the past  and learn, adapt and evolve from this experience.

“Very commonly with these transits, you deal with others doubting your character in your love life, and you could feel like you’re forced into a position of proving yourself. Your first reaction is to do just that prove yourself to a partner or lover. However, you eventually realize how fruitless this effort is. If this transit comes at a time when you are single, it can be a period in which new people in your love life are unable or unwilling to commit to you, who fail to see you as worthy of partnership material.”
http://www.cafeastrology.com/chirontransits.html

MOON ASPECTS

“1)  Aspects to the Moon colour the anima image and what we experienced via the mother or caretaker.  For instance, do we meet Jupiter or Saturn through the Moon (through females or mother)?  Are we owning our anima image or projecting it”

2) Planets aspecting the Moon generally describe childhood conditioning, and further define our feeling nature.  Are we open, closed, defended, quick or slow to react?  The nature of a planet aspecting the Moon describes our instinctive responses to life as well as what we tend to meet in the emotional sphere.  The Moon’s aspects will also colour how we care for and nuture others, or how we liked to be cared for.

3) Aspects to the Moon describe something about our domestic life.

4) Planets aspecting the Moon can come out through the body and the way we move.  In particular, aspects to the Moon will describe a woman’s relationship to her own body.” Liz Green & Howard Sasportas – THE LUMINARIES MOON CONJUNCT MERCURY

LEONARD’S CHART

Moon Conjunct Venus

“Different expressions of this aspect can include people who constantly feel the need to adapt to others, those who use roundabout ways to charm others into getting what they want, or people who do everything they can to avoid conflict. The mother or mother figure may have herself displayed these tendencies–using charm rather than directness to get what she wanted, or she may have been submissive and adaptable, always tiptoeing around others so as to avoid conflict. Or she may have been susceptible to charm–the child may have discovered early in life that to get what he or she wanted (attention, generally) from the mother, the most effective vehicle was charm, pretense, and other indirect tactics.”  http://www.cafeastrology.com/natal/moonvenusaspects.html

I think too this aspect has artistic if not poetic gifts where a person would express their most deepest feeling through writing or some kind of art form. When hurt the Moon conjunct Venus would be quite panic/anxious about any situation and probably tends to take things way too personally where the heart is involved.

“[Moon Conjunct Venus] In most instances, childhood brought a feeling of abandonment and a noticeable lack of affection, hugging, stroking. The touch becomes especially sensitive and the need for touch quite profound. In some instances a strong mothering, nurutring quality emerges that is beyond objective necessity. It becomes a way of assuring love in return on a very subconscious level. At times the individual may be hurt when he feels he gives affection but does not receive the same measure in return. When this aspect is turned to positive expression, the individual touches the hearts of humanity through his artistry, sense of fair play, and love nature. ~ Astrological Aspects ~ Jeanne Avery 

I love the cafeastrology description and agree of the submissive mother – as my mom always seemed to tip-toe around my father who was very jealous of the time and attention she gave my diabetic brother.

Leonard was good-looking, a charmer and loved people, especially women because he felt and understood them. This seems to tie in with Chiron square Venus, where it states he may of struggled with his own physical gender. However, the more I think of this, Len was extremely spiritual/philosophical which tends to be feminine in itself and could describe his difficulty living in a predominately male world.

Another thought, Len was diagnosed with diabetes when he was only 8 years old. The moon rules the stomach and Venus describes the pancreas and kidneys,… together they show wanting something sweet to candy coat hurt or empty feelings. Even abandonment issues.

“Our earliest experience of food and safety, and our first encounter with the lunar principle after birth, is mother’s breast. Although the Moon is really inside us, we first meet it exteriorized in the person who has given birth to us, feeds us and protects us.   If mother goes away, then the dark of the Moon has come, and we are overcome with terror of the abyss of extinction. “ Liz Greene The Illuminaries

Moon square Mars ~ This indicates a lot of inner tension and frustrations when trying our best to express our feelings, especially when our instincts are in conflict with them. This may cause us to have angry outbursts when we can no longer take the inner pressures. 

Pent-up emotions can later manifest as arguments and confrontations – we may enjoy them as an excuse for self assertion, though they may really be a release of held-in energies. If these emotions become dominant in our life we can suffer from psychosomatic health disorders through repressed anger – espeically affecting the intestine and stomach areas. This repressed energy needs to be released through constructive channels; perhaps self-help techiques, relaxation or meditation. 

Moon square Saturn 

“The square between your Moon and Saturn indicates that you find it difficult to let go of the past and anyone associated with it. Because of your early conditioning, you are overwhelmed with guilt when you express disloyalty toward someone you have known for a long time. Family matters are therefore very important to you, and you forget few birthdays or other commemorative events. These tendencies show that you are emotionally trapped; it is difficult for you to establish your independence outside the confining circumstances of the home and family.

…The most likely fields of work for you are those that serve the needs of the elderly. Such fields as nursing, physical therapy, housing, geriatrics, food, and public assistance programs are some possible avenues of expression. These areas of endeavor emphasize domestic circumstances or identification with individuals who bring to mind your parents. You could perform excellent work and be amply rewarded for your efforts, and at the same time know that you are filling an important need.” Robert Pelletier 

Leonard had this aspect which also contributes to isolation. Usually with this placement we like to keep most people at a safe arm’s distance .. we appear more serious .. we need our space. This may be rooted in one’s upbringing as the moon also represents the “emotional blanket” that is related to the emotions and sense of security that a mother gives us. With this aspect chances are this didn’t  happen and if you have this aspect, may of had a sad and love-lacking upbringing, . Of course this will have an impact on a person’s adult life.

Leonard was quite argumentative growing up in the home this too may signify a mother’s coldness. To heal this square you have to trust yourself, trust that you deserve to love and be loved, believe you’re a good person; accept that this is how you grew up and that this has nothing to do with you, and  accept that your family did the best they could.  

You maintain tensions and frustrations by refusing to release behavior patterns formed during childhood and within your parental relationship. it is your choice, if you wish, to continue limiting your life, but it is not inevitable; limitations are only imaginary parameters which we draw around ourselves as a barrier; they can be erased or expanded. Your creativity is blocked by emotional repression. If you dissolve the barrier and redirect the energies toward positive and constructive channels, then much could be achieved. Finding additional interests and stimulation would be beneficial, showing that the world has much to offer if you open to its riches. Becoming involved with children could reveal new ways to see things; their enthusiasms and sense of wonder could be transmitted to you. With contemporary self-help techniques, visualization, meditation, affirmation, and the availability of numerous ways to release blocked energies, you can transform your life to face the future with positivity and optimism. Once freed from past restrictions, you can uncover your latent potential. ~ Paul Haydn 

With this aspect in particular, it makes us very sensitive and fearful of criticism. This could be due to the fact that the mother has or had criticised us for all the things we did wrong (in her eyes). My mother was very hard on her children especially in regards to our success in school. It always made me feel like I was walking on eggshells around her … and this carried over into our adult life too. It’s taken me a long time to understand that there is a difference between constructive criticism and controlling criticism. I think too this aspect also reflects a mother who did very little hugging and kissing with her child/children.

“The Moon-Saturn child generally gets the message very early on that it has to be emotionally self-sufficient. The child receives early messages that they will be loved only if they behave in a certain kind of way; responsible and unobtrusive, staying in the background, not getting under people’s feet…The ramifications of this are that in adulthood, the individual finds it very difficult to react and respond in a spontaneous kind of way because there is a constant, very often barely conscious expectation of criticism. People with hard contacts, and the conjunction too, tend to express their feelings with great caution and a certain defensiveness.” Sue Tompkins 


to be continued……

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