This article was originally published through my "channeled from love" newsletter on November 29th, 2017. To subscribe, email me at email@example.com with the subject "newsletter subscription."
The most painful, challenging thing in your life right now is an opportunity. Not part of your identity, not proof of the Universe punishing you or the result of some horrible karmic force that’s out to get you. No, the most painful, challenging thing in your life is a blessing. It is very difficult to see it as such when we are in the midst of that thing.
As Eckhart Tolle would say, we attach our sense of self to things outside of ourselves, because the ego seeks to enhance its identity. We unconsciously begin to associate who we are with what we have experienced in our lives. We become a victim of something, perhaps a failed relationship or an illness, and attach our happiness to that thing. It is that thing’s fault that we cannot be happy, that thing or that person has wronged us and so now everything is just fucked up. We’re in this impossible hole, that someone else or maybe just “the Universe” at large has dug for us.
Why do things happen to us? Or rather, why do we experience certain things? Asking ourselves these kinds of questions open the gateway to many important revelations of the Self and our existence within the grander scheme. This is the flowering of consciousness. There is a sense of awareness, of distance between who you are and what you experience, a sense of seeing things for as they are.
They are simply things. And it is our reaction to these things, often that we perceive to be outside of or “happening to” us, that changes the impact of these experiences. Awareness begins with ourselves, our relationship with ourselves, and the understanding of the relationship between ourselves and what we perceive to be apart from us, like the world. Our language and thought patterns give us incredible insight as to the kinds of realities we are affirming and creating for ourselves.
When we tell ourselves that “so-and-so did this to me and so I will hold a grudge against them and give them the keys to my happiness” or “I am not receiving the credit, validation, comfort, or love from other people and so I will complain about my reality of lack,” we are affirming a reality where we do not have power. Instead, we can choose to rewire our thinking. But we cannot do this if we are not aware of our thoughts in the first place. Moments where we can catch ourselves in our own thought patterns, like when we convince ourselves that we are powerless and that being angry, resentful or sad about this (false) reality is the correct response, are moments where consciousness is raised because distance is acknowledged.
When we become “removed,” in a sense, from the things that happen to us and the thoughts that we produce, we can then begin to look more closely into why we are experiencing these things in the first place. Cause and effect rules our lives, here on the physical plane, and we witness its power every day. You left your wallet in the car, but didn’t realize it until you approached the cashier and you had to run back to your car. And so you had to wait in line twice and this made you very anxious and restless. But what were you thinking about while you waited in line a second time? Were your thoughts buzzing around, taking you to far off places in the future that haven’t even happened yet? Or maybe you were perfectly calm, focusing on your breathing and looking around at the other people in line. Regardless of where your thoughts wandered, you gained insight because you had a certain experience. You thought things that you would not have thought about in that specific way because you experienced your day the way that you did. This may sound very obvious or silly. And yes, it is quite obvious but it is not silly.
Seeing everything we experience in a day, from the big events like running into an old friend to the smaller events like deciding to order a salad instead of a burger, as an opportunity to align yourself with your highest good is Gratitude. It is Presence. It is living love. Can you see that you needed to experience everything you did in order to bring you to this present moment? Can you see how every minute detail shaped you? When we adopt this mindset, things stop happening “to” us but rather “for” us.
Wisdom for the Week
Can you see through your sufferings, as you would a window or a door, rather than take them for what they are at surface value? Can you see your pain as a portal to love?
Make the practice of Gratitude a ritual. Rituals are different from routines. A routine is something that you do because you feel you have to, or it will make your day run smoother because you have a schedule. A routine is important, but without Presence and intention it can quickly become mindless and mundane. A ritual is charged with Presence, love, and intention. A ritual carries with it the power you affirm it has.
Will you thank the ancestors when you wake up? Or perhaps you will write down everything you are grateful for throughout the day. Maybe your sense of gratitude pours over into your relationship with others and you can’t help but remind them of your love.
- During meditation, direct your energy to your heart. Feel it open, shed away heaviness or feelings of being wronged. Open it to forgiveness, love and Presence.
As we approach the Full Moon in Gemini and the Mercury Retrograde (both falling on Sunday), everything is collapsing. Timelines are coalescing and coming together in beautiful chaos. You may already be experiencing some of these shifts. Old friends or partners reappearing in your life, frustration rising over past situations that seem to have resurfaced. The retrograde period will do that. Know that this is all Divine, as we are constantly existing and flowing within cycles - within cycles. Use the upcoming retrograde period (December 3rd - 22nd) to reevaluate the role of past pain in your life as it is now. This is a time to pause, reassess everything laid out in front of us, and allow ourselves to detach from a cycle of trauma and limited consciousness. Everything is coming to fruition and it is so beautiful. Remember to stay Present. Remove yourself from the very mundane, surface-level understanding of "what's happening." Embrace Sagittarius vision. Embrace Presence.
Similarly, the Gemini Full Moon is cause for celebration and reflection on the ending of cycles. Death and birth, endings and beginnings... they are one. We cannot separate them, try as we might, even on the linear timeline. There is no definite moment where death ever exists within a birth of some kind. So as we are celebrating the end of a cycle, we must remember that Full Moons speak to dualities and oppositions. The Sun is quite literally opposing the Moon. We see now that harmony exists in what we perceive to be polarities. Use this Full Moon and Retrograde period this weekend to truly examine all that you want to claim as we progress further into the cycle.
Sagittarius season, already, has illuminated that we cannot exist in a state of constant dread, sorrow or brooding. Leave that in Scorpio season. We are now embracing the expansiveness that is our Divine birthright and the rewards that come with going within. We are never meant to stay in one place forever. So, using the knowledge you've accumulated during Scorpio season, the ways in which you've navigated your Shadow self and truly allowed your wounds to surface, know that this knowledge will now become wisdom as you venture out of your cave and back into the collective. All that you've experience is now taking the form of insight and perspective; Sagittarius is a wise teacher that seeks to share its fruits with the collective. In order to fully embrace all that the season is offering us, we mustn't allow ourselves to get stuck in Scorpio's dark, emotionally intense energies.
To close, I will include a snippet of my new Frequency of the Week readings. You can view the readings here: floreashelby.com/messages. They may not be posted every week, but they will serve as comprehensive thematic guidance through Tarot and Oracle Card readings. Read the full Tarot reading for the week of 11/28- 12/5 here.