Sunday, December 10, 2006

Spiritual Prosperity and Everyday Riches

© 2006 Paul Hood

Recently Paul was instructed by his guidance to pay more attention to his last priority than his first. Like most people, more of our attention gets sucked into the demands and concerns of everyday practical life than into why we're wanting to do what we're doing in the first place. Why are we here? What makes our hearts sing and what gives our lives purpose?

Paul is a talented photographer. He takes photographs of hummingbirds in mid-flight -- some as pristine as a still life, a truly fleeting moment absolutely frozen in time; others a colorful blur, like a gesture drawing of flapping wings and flashes of light that capture the essence of these amazing creatures like nothing else I've ever seen. He is an artist and a mystic who, for minutes and sometimes hours at a time, can connect with his subjects in the most profound manner. I've seen birds literally cock their heads at him and come in for a closer look. They pose for him, turning this way and that, pausing over and over while he clicks away to his heart's delight.

Paul says that the driving passion of his life is to help himself and others rise above limited perspectives and reach higher levels of spiritual development. He likes helping our clients by applying broad spiritual perspectives to the most personal and significant aspects of their daily lives. Living a spiritually evolved life in the context of everyday physical existence is no small project. Becoming aware of the greater meaning and possibility inherent in every life situation lifts people out of stuck places, helps them see the benefits in the challenges they're faced with, and allows them to sally forth with new vigor and determination, awe and delight. It's a challenge we both relish and we support each other by using our complementary focuses to help our clients and ourselves.

According to Chinese mythology, the role of the mighty dragon is to soar to heaven and come back to earth clutching the pearl of enlightenment, spreading good fortune and prosperity to one and all. Paul was born in the Year of the Dragon. I feel lucky to have him in my life.

What's my role? Well, I don't take too much stock in this usually but, according to Chinese astrology, I was born in the Year of the Dog. Oh joy, not the most exciting sign (woof, woof) but the good qualities of the Dog are that they are loyal, faithful, trustworthy and honest, and literally keep their noses to the ground, "doggedly" pursuing their projects and interests with single-minded determination. To be honest, I don't really care that much about spiritual transcendence -- I'm here on earth and while it was useful to have had the spiritual awakenings and experiences I have had, I'm much more interested in living a happy and satisfying physical life and helping my clients do the same.

Is it different from what Paul wants? Well, our beliefs about it differ considerably. He cares about your spiritual development; I use a spiritual perspective to concentrate on life on earth. Together it's like we're attempting to reenact the ancient dance of Shakti and Shiva, melding the transcendent and immanent, the act of rising above mundane physical reality for divine inspiration and the task of using that inspiration to create new realities on the physical plane.

We come at our work from different perspectives but it's really all about the same thing.

What's my passion?

Well, I absolutely love it when an inner voice prompts me to say what seems like an innocent little comment to me at the time and the whole sky opens up for one of our clients. I love the look of excitement and possibility that comes into their eyes and the energy and light that infuses their beings. I love seeing people be lifted up and I find myself touched, awestruck and blessed every time it happens.

That's why I'm doing it. It's for you but-- I'm not ashamed to admit it --it's also good for me.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

The Beginning of a New Healing Partnership

It's extremely unusual for healers to work in tandem. Despite our best intentions for creating community most health practitioners find themselves operating a solitary practice, going it alone without input from other people on a day-to-day basis. Unlike burgeoning psychotherapists, doctors and other licensed healthcare professionals, there is no internship program or supervision for psychic / spiritual consultants and energy healers. There is no advisory board to help you think about difficult cases, no one who watches you work who can guide you to be the best support person you can be without taking on too much, and no one to run to when your own mixture of hope and fear starts to creep up despite your training and best efforts.

It's a challenging road to be a fairly mainstream person in a very non-mainstream career. It either takes a strong streak of showmanship (I don't have that), a lot of chutzpa, or the ability to channel the inner peace of a devout Buddhist to keep one's head out of the slings and arrows of one's own socially-influenced psyche.

That's why it was such an amazing experience to have my guides hook me up with my current heartmate -- twin flame -- and healing partner Paul Hood. We met when I went to Bellingham, WA to visit my friend Katie and try my hand at doing readings and selling Mama Love Perfume at the local pagan festival. We parted ways and probably thought we'd never see each other again but several months later, when I was in the midst of the upside down Christmas Tree controversy (see earlier entries below), I found myself thinking about him and looked him up online. I told him what was going on, he visited my blog page and added his two cents, and I couldn't believe how what he said dovetailed with the things I had been writing about for an upcoming book of mine. We kept a daily email conversation up for weeks after that, found that we shared too many thoughts and feelings and life experiences in common to blame on coincidence, and started to get daily guidance and pushes from my spirit guides to get together in person and find out how we might help each other.

So we made it happen. Paul came to Santa Cruz. We really liked getting to know each other, and then we asked for practice clients to help us find out how and if we might work together as practitioners. Fourteen people responded in two weeks! The sessions were enormously enlightening, powerful and exciting for us, we learned a lot, had great results, and as time went on we found ourselves working together like old hands. So we told the universe "Yes! We're ready to go!," Paul moved to Santa Cruz, and we began a wonderful new adventure.

At this point we have no idea where this journey will lead -- we're exploring a wide range of possibilities. But one thing is certain -- it's really great when you have a friend you admire and respect by your side.