Guest Post by Author Dean K Miller: Whose Voice Do We Hear?

What is “automatic writing”? Can this technique be of any benefit to you?

Please welcome my friend and fellow author Dean K Miller. I will allow him to explain. (Following his post, Dean has a free, but limited-time offer you’ll want to be sure to take advantage of.)

Whose Voice Do We Hear?
by Dean K Miller

The ways authors find inspiration are as different as the individual authors themselves. Add to this mix the countless places writers find their words and stories and you can see why writing is such an individual (but not necessarily lonely) pursuit. But what if you heard a story being told to you, even if it didn’t seem to be in your own voice? Would you trust those words?

A couple years ago I was working with a technique called “automatic writing.” There are several definitions of automatic writing, but in general the practice allows one to channel your Higher Self or Spirit Guides through claircognizance and then transcribe that onto paper. (Here is one resource for automatic writing from Anna Sayce: http://annasayce.com/how-to-do-automatic-writing) After completing several sessions (always asking for protection before starting each one,) I found myself compelled to bring those words out to the real world. But how? The automatic writing was fragmented, seldom containing complete sentences or even entire thoughts. As one writes with this technique (without judgment or correction) the results appear as babbling, random words.

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Example of automatic writing session from Dean’s personal journal.

These unconscious ideas continually nagged my conscious brain to bring them to life. As I began to assemble my first book of essays, creative nonfiction, and poetry, I kept those writings in mind. Somewhere in the process I found the inspiration to work my automatic writing samples into a fictional tale. This allowed me to present the material in a manner that kept the most personal aspects and words private, but still permitted the collective positive vibes to be published. The Odyssey of a Monk was born.

The short story is about a young orphaned monk who leaves the Buddhist temple he was raised in, to venture out on his own. It was an exciting challenge to weave my automatic writing pieces into a fictional tale and its characters. First I needed to make coherent thoughts out of the bits and pieces I had written down. Weeding through each session’s pages, I found common themes and intertwined them. Next I created various elders (monks, a shaman and others) to present these words of wisdom to the young monk as he travels the countryside. As the young monk encounters the wise elders, each one offers advice and answers the monk’s questions via the passages from my writing sessions. The storyline flowed naturally from this process as each encountered gives the young monk the advice he needs at different points in his life.

Odyssey of a Monk Cover_Final

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Thanks Patricia for hosting me today and I hope your readers enjoy the free download of The Odyssey of a Monk, which is available for Kindle readers from Oct. 10 – 12. Here is the link for the Ebook: http://www.amazon.com/Odyssey-Monk-Dean-K-Miller-ebook/dp/B00O2A097I/ref=sr_1_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1412613430&sr=1-1&keywords=the+odyssey+of+a+monk

PAIDDean K Miller is an author and free lance writer who resides in Loveland, CO. His first book, And Then I Smiled: Reflections on a Life Not Yet Complete was released in February 2014 via Hot Chocolate Press. The short story The Odyssey of a Monk opened to Kindle readers on September 29, 2014. His first poetry collection, titled Echoes: Reflections Through Poetry and Verse is scheduled for release November 1, 2014, also via Hot Chocolate Press.

Dean works for the Federal Aviation Administration, logging more than 26 years as an air traffic controller. He listens to the voices, both at work and in the world around him, because one might tell him something worth writing down. Learn more at www.deankmiller.com

 

Exploring Uncharted Legions of the Mind

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View of the grounds at TMI in the beautiful Blue Ridge Mountains of Virginia

How brave are you really? Would you dare to enter the uncharted legions and depths of your mind?

I did. Repeatedly. I’ve always been interested in how the human mind works; I should have been a psychologist. Through my personal studies, though, I’ve discovered that truly NOTHING is impossible. Whatever the mind can conceive, it can achieve–or–if you can imagine it, you can make it happen.

I just completed a six-day program at The Monroe Institute (TMI) in Virginia, called “Timeline”, which focuses on the exploration of past, present, and future lives and how they influence our current lives. Fascinating stuff.

This painting by Salvador Dali pretty much sums up the sort of things I’ve experienced during programs at TMI:

Salvador Dali

Wait–you don’t get it? No, no drugs are involved. Let me attempt to explain.

You spend most of your time in your CHEC unit (Controlled Holistic Environmental Chamber), which is more or less a bed that’s enclosed on all sides except for an opening, which allows you to crawl in and out. A heavy black drape covers the opening so that the entire unit is completely dark to minimize external sensory distractions and maximize internal focus. Through headphones, you listen to recorded exercises, which are similar to guided meditations with the incorporation of Hemi-Sync® binaural beats. (More about this later.)

CHEC Unit

CHEC Unit

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The founder, Robert Monroe’s home, where the “Timeline” program took place.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What does it feel like to enter another dimension of consciousness?

(Please keep in mind that these are my personal experiences—those of others may vary.)

After a series of mental steps to help you feel comfortable and safe during your “excursion,” you are then guided to different levels of consciousness which are referred to by number, i.e. C-1 represents full, waking consciousness, followed by F10, F12, F15, F21, F27 and so on. The “F” stands for “Focus Level.” F10, for instance, indicates the state of “mind awake/body asleep” and in F10, you feel as if you’re on the verge of falling asleep, but you can still feel your body lying on the bed and you’re fully aware that you’re in a room and what you’re doing there. In F12, (the state of expanded awareness) you begin to let go a bit more, and when I “arrive” in F12, I often “see” someone waiting for me there. Sometimes it’s someone I know in my current life, or sometimes it’s someone I’m familiar with but don’t know personally. It appears that these “people” always have a personal message for me, something I’ve been ignoring and need to address because they seem to get immediately in my face and are generally very insistent.

Often the images I encounter in the different levels of consciousness are symbolic or metaphors for something in my waking life and sometimes I know exactly what they mean; other times I never seem to figure them out. So far, the meaning of the images I encounter immediately upon my arrival in F12 are pretty easy to decipher, because it’s always a person (as opposed to an inanimate object, or a sound or a feeling) and he or she instantly moves toward me as if we’re opposite magnets.

Throughout any focus level, I am always in complete control of what I’m experiencing, and I have the ability to end the session or ask for clarification on anything at any time I choose. This is extremely important, because before my initial sessions at TMI, I was afraid that I would somehow relinquish control of my mind. But this is NOT the case. Ever. I always have control, but sometimes I have to remind myself of that fact! Just like in my everyday life.

galaxy-379213_640 Most of the Timeline program took place in F15, the state of consciousness where time doesn’t exist. It is a very deep, meditative state and there’s a feeling of floating. During my first experiences in F15, I found it a bit difficult to breathe; it felt as if my “surroundings”, for lack of a better word, were thick and intense, as if I was floating in a substance as dense as ketchup. Once I became more familiar with it, though, I told myself to relax, told myself that I could breathe easily, and that knowledge allowed me to float effortlessly and allow experiences or realizations to come to me. It’s like having a dream, where you’re in the REM state and you’re not aware of your physical body.

What I’m attempting to relate is nearly impossible to describe in words, because I experienced a richness to my sessions, where my visuals were accompanied by feelings and the use of all (or most of) my senses, but in a much more heightened manner. My perception also varied from one session to the next. (Sometimes I would simply “click out” or fall asleep, and experience nothing! This isn’t uncommon.)

TMI logo photo by Baja Rock PatFor instance, I interacted with energies that were clearly not human, but whom seemed to know me and (often) love me unconditionally, and the words “alien” or “angel” or “spirit” or whatever familiar term one might attach to it, does not adequately describe what I thought, felt, saw, or heard. The terms alien, angel, or spirit are relative terms anyway–they mean something different to each of us. TMI refers to them as “other energies or other energy systems,” a more appropriate description, because these “individuals” weren’t made of flesh like you and me, but of vibration, or energy, or thought. And just because they weren’t in human form didn’t mean they were more intelligent or advanced than we are. Now isn’t that an interesting concept?

walnut half During several sessions, I received a “knowing” that where I had requested to go (you set an intention for each exercise) required me to leave my physical body behind, and I worked very hard to make this happen. (That was my first mistake–“working very hard.” I now know that by trying to force things, it only hindered me–again, just like life.) In F15, my body felt heavy and “crispy,” and like a walnut shell that’s cracked in half, if you scoop out the nut, the empty shell remains the same shape it was in before you removed the nut, so too, my body retained its shape, but it was as if the top part had been removed, and my “insides” were rather gelatinous and began to “slosh” back and forth horizontally from head to toe like when you shake a bowl of jello. This gelatinous part of me then began to vibrate as it attempted to float upward, but it never got “out” completely. It rose up about three or four inches, but something kept it attached to my crispy shell (body).

Many who have experienced the out-of-body state, describe a vibration feeling that happens just before they leave their bodies, but some describe leaving their bodies without that feeling. I think my focusing too much on trying to achieve the out-of-body state may have been the very thing that kept me tethered at times. And although during the entire 6-day program, I never got the feeling that I completely went out-of-body, I’m certain that it happened many times without my ever realizing it, because there were times I knew I was completely immersed in another dimension of consciousness without regard to how I got there (because “how I got there” wasn’t important at the time; I wasn’t focusing on that aspect). My body felt paralyzed, in a sense, but my mind went jaunting off into other “territories”.

In addition to being limited by words to describe such experiences, another challenge is that there is no empirical proof whether the things one has experienced are real or imagined; but perhaps a more important question is: “If I just imagined all this, why did I imagine this particular scene and not something else?” The mind is a powerful tool, and when you let go of trying to control your environment, and simply allow things to come to you, amazing things happen. This isn’t just true for TMI sessions, it is true for one’s everyday waking state as well.

meditation-389700_640 The Timeline program reinforced in me that I am much more than my physical body, and that “I” do not end with death. In several sessions, I actually experienced the dying process of my physical body in previous lifetimes, although I did not allow myself to feel the pain associated with it. I realize this sounds frightening, but I learned so very much from these exercises. What I experienced was a separation of spirit and body, a release similar to my being given an epidural during the births of my children, and the moment the drug took effect, the pain vanished instantly. The death experiences felt similar to that–the moment the spirit left the body, there was instant relief from pain, combined with a release from mental anguish as well. This was completely unexpected, and the “I” who was witnessing the whole scene, was surprised at the tremendous sense of relief and release.

In 2003, I had an out-of-body experience (OBE) in the middle of Sammy Hagar‘s concert, and that moment changed my life. While in the out-of-body state, I “saw” landscapes that were clearly not earth, and beings that were not human. Thousands of them. I wrote about this in Dance of the Electric Hummingbird. At the time, I assumed they were representations of alien worlds that exist beyond human comprehension. Now, after the things I experienced at TMI, I wonder if they were glimpses of previous lives that I had lived, or future lives, because there is a school of thought that considers that we may indeed, be living all of our lives simultaneously, similar to the space-time continuum theory in physics. With this theory in mind, some say that just as each of our cells makes up different parts of us, all these other lives are merely different aspects or parts of us–each being integral to the whole. And ultimately, just as these different aspects of us make up one whole that we think of as the “self”, we too, are all different aspects of what we call God–each of us connected to form one consciousness that is God.

I can certainly see now, how this could very well be possible.

I also saw that since “I” exist far beyond the constraints of my physical body and that since the boundaries of what I call “me” overlap and merge with other living and non-living beings, what I do to others (or to the earth), I also do to myself.

Too, it’s important for me to realize the blessing of existing here, right now, in this physical body, for there are aspects of spiritual growth that cannot be learned by any other means. Therefore, I shouldn’t squander my life fretting over “the small things,” because every moment is meant to be enjoyed with every fiber of my being.

wave-64170_640 I learned that if I look closely enough, and with the eyes of a child (Zen calls this “Beginner’s Mind”), I can actually see my entire essence—the very essence of life itself, in a drop of rain, the veins of a single leaf, in a freckle on a stranger’s face, the song of a cardinal, and in every being—living and non-living. All of these things are me and they, like me, since we are all fibers of God, are infinite. Time is merely an illusion; it’s something humans created to make sense of and feel in control of our environment.

At the risk of sounding presumptuous, I believe that my initial OBE during the rock concert, planted a kind of “seed” in my subconscious. This seed continues to grow the more I feed it spiritual wisdom, the sort of wisdom I uncover during TMI sessions, because these sessions put me in contact with—and enhance—dimensions of my mind (that are also in contact with higher levels of consciousness) that I previously never knew existed.

Bob Monroe's Cabin photo by Baja Rock Pat

Robert Monroe’s cabin, where he wrote most of his books on his many out-of-body experiences and the exploration of altered states of consciousness

Why is any of this important when there are people starving in the world and so many other important things one could be focusing on?

The exploration of the mind and its capabilities can give us insight into the reasons we behave the way we do, help us achieve personal goals, and give us tools to teach others, thereby healing the world by first healing ourselves. Visiting some of my other lives not only explained the roles certain people play in my current life, it also showed me how and why I adopted some of my limiting beliefs. Knowledge, then, is power—the power to change and to better myself. I shall continue to explore the power of my mind and spirit, for there is much to learn, and that, I believe, is the meaning of our lives—to grow and to experience emotion in its many forms–the greatest and most important of these–is love.

TMI by Baja Rock Pat

Giant crystal on the property

(To read about my first experience at TMI, please click here: Gateway to Altered States of Consciousness)

**TMI is dedicated to exploring human consciousness and peak human performance with the use of Hemi-Sync® audio technology, which uses the scientifically adapted method of binaural beats to induce the meditative state and bring both left and right hemispheres of the brain into balance. The balanced brain then, is much more capable of achieving things of which it may not have previously been capable, thereby providing a tool to help listeners achieve goals such as weight loss, quitting smoking, improved concentration, stress or pain relief, and many other areas of self-improvement. For more information, please visit http://www.monroeinstitute.org/resources/hemi-sync

I love you, Mom

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I’m reading lots of wonderful posts online today, and looking at all the photos of people hugging their moms. And when I go to the store, there are countless of choices of floral bouquets and Mother’s Day cards.

I think that’s the toughest part—seeing all those cards.

I used to read every single one—searching for the perfect card to tell my mother how much she meant to me. She was my best friend. My healer, my confidant, the one who loved me unconditionally. I adored her. On her gravestone, I had them inscribe: “Our angel.”

My mother had the softest hands and the warmest hugs. Her smile could light up a room.

Mom taught me to believe in God and she taught me the importance of being a good person—to be honest and trustworthy—even when it’s not convenient or expected, even when no one is looking, and even when those around you are not behaving that way. She taught me that it’s the little things in life that matter most—like being with your family and your friends. She taught me to fish, to cook and to bake, to love animals, and the importance of getting down on the floor with your kids to color in coloring books, to toss the baseball in the backyard with your sons, or that you’re never too old to play Barbies with your daughter.

My mother taught me that hugs are to be given freely, and she taught me the importance of saying, “I love you” because you never know when you will see that person again. Maybe not until the next lifetime. I am forever grateful that the words “I love you” were the last words I spoke to her and she to me.

Is it mere coincidence that when I went to the Pixabay website just now, to find a picture of daisies (my mom’s favorite flower) to insert in this post, that before I even typed in what I wanted to search for–a picture of a daisy popped up?

I don’t believe in coincidences. I had the best mom in the universe.

Happy Mother’s Day in heaven, Momma. I miss you every single day.

The Stuff of Holidays: Magic, Tears and Blessings

Christmas tree with presents and fireplace with stockings --- Image by © Royalty-Free/CorbisI’ve already shed a few sentimental tears this past week—at my cousin’s photo of her kids brandishing candy canes and big grins, all bundled up and piled in the car as they get ready to go cut their annual family Christmas tree; at the silly Christmas program on TV yesterday when Santa Claus made his entrance ho ho ho’ing as he passed out candy to those in attendance; at songs like “A Mother’s Christmas Wish” by Olivia Newton John (and I don’t ordinarily even like her music) and “Believe” by Josh Groban; and at movies I will always treasure, no matter how corny they seem to anyone else: “The Homecoming,” “Prancer,” “Christmas Vacation,” the cartoon version of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” and the puppet versions of “The Little Drummer Boy” and “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer.”

It’s funny, isn’t it? How a holiday can have such a profound effect on a person.

You see, Christmas has always been my favorite time of year—a time of joy: the intoxicating smells of evergreen, baking cookies, roast turkey, hot cocoa, a fire in the fireplace, stockings hung by the chimney with care (as my dad used to say), colored lights and sparkles everywhere, the anticipation of the looks on my kids’ faces on Christmas morning, and the way my heart overflows with joy when making others happy. I get caught up in the rush of it all, yes, the chaotic craziness, fights with my husband because try as I may (and I really DO try), I always end up spending too much, but I do it because I want to make that one special day perfect for my family. My mother used to do the same, and those are memories I will never forget. They are the stuff that made me believe, and never stop believing—that dreams really do come true, and that real love never dies.

The older I get, the more memories I now associate with Christmas, and although all of them used to be good, that is no longer the case. My precious father died unexpectedly just days before Christmas in 2005, followed by my mother in early 2006. In deep shock and inexplicable horror, we were forced to bury Dad on a snowy and cold Christmas Eve that year. It’s hard enough to enjoy the holidays after you’ve lost a loved-one, but even harder when you lose someone during what to me had always been the happiest season of all.

But, such is the price of getting older, I guess.

My tears during the holidays now come with mixed emotions—joy for the family I still have, and the grandchildren who now grace my home with the laughter, excitement, and innocence my own children used to exhibit—and a longing for those whom I once adored but are no longer here in the flesh.

Each year though, they send me signs that they are still with me in spirit, signs that my husband would say are mere coincidence—like how my husband’s computer turned on all by itself the other night—the screen suddenly bursting with a bright, blue photo of the ocean, desktop icons along one side. I got up to turn it off, but since it’s a version of Windows I’m unfamiliar with, I couldn’t figure out how, so I simply turned off the monitor. The next day when I told him about it, my husband said that that was impossible; the monitor wasn’t even connected to the computer; it couldn’t have turned itself on or displayed that photo.

But it did.

And, when getting out of the car two weeks ago, I clearly smelled the scent of my dad’s pipe. Impossible.

Not impossible. For me, Christmas prompts me to treasure the blessings I have—a roof over my head, food in my belly, and all the other material things I have, but most of all, Christmas is a time to remember that real love never dies, and to treasure those whom have blessed my life in so many ways.

Thank you for blessing my life. (Written with a tear in my eye and a lump in my throat.)

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Podcast of “Positive Perspectives” with Melinda Carver

According to talk show host Melinda Carver, at first, her listeners wondered how a spiritual awakening could take place during a rock concert. And who would blame them? I thought the same thing, even as it was happening to me! Hopefully all their questions were answered during our interview. Melinda was an outstanding host, asking questions such as, “How did you balance being a wife and mom with having such extraordinary experiences?” and “What was it like to be singing onstage with a famous rock star?” She also inquired about how I compared my journey to that of Paulo Coelho’s award-winning book, “The Alchemist.”

Melinda and I further discussed the role music and sound played in what happened to me, the implications of what experiences like mine could mean for others, and how my book has effected many of my readers. It was a great interview. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Thank you, Melinda!

Gateway to Altered States of Consciousness

TMI by Baja Rock Pat

It’s been a month since I returned home from my six-day Gateway Voyage program at The Monroe Institute (TMI) in Faber, Virginia. TMI specializes in exploring altered states of consciousness, out-of-body experiences and peak human performance and they use sound frequencies (Hemi-sync© binaural beats) to induce these states.

As the old song by Jim Stafford went: “Take a trip and never leave the farm!” Indeed.

“Hemi-sync” is short for “hemispheric synchronization,” or the coordination of both left and right sides of the brain to stimulate expanded awareness and more focused human performance. Wearing headphones, the listener hears similar but slightly different beats played in each ear. For example, the listener might hear a beat of 100 Hz in one ear and 104 Hz in the other. The brain then interprets the difference of 4 Hz as that of a third beat, which it mimics, creating theta brain waves, which is the brain’s natural state of deep relaxation and increased learning. And when combined with an atmosphere with minimal or no outside sensory input, the mind is capable of incredible things. Therefore, each participant is assigned his or her own CHEC unit complete with headphones, volume and light controls, and a black drape to block out noise and extraneous sound and light.

CHEC Unit

 

 

 

CHEC Unit                                                         (Controlled Holistic Environmental Chamber)

 

Founder, Robert Monroe, strove to keep his research scientific and credible, so in developing his techniques, he worked with many professionals including psychiatrists, psychologists, physicists, and electronics engineers to name a few. It was crucial to him that his research was considered valid in the scientific community. And this was one of the reasons I wanted to attend TMI. What they offer there is not spiritual shenanigans. The human brain is an amazing instrument and capable of far more than we realize.

Robert Monroe

                                                                Robert Monroe

 

 

 

I’ve been going over the notes I took while I was there in order to process the incredible things that happened to me. There were many. And some were intense. Not for the faint-of-heart. After six days of lying in the dark on my back in my cubicle with headphones on, the experiences I had will probably take me years to absorb, but I thought you might be interested in a little introduction here, as I continue to sort everything out. Some of my deductions thus far:

  • Death of the physical body is not the end.
  • If we were to use just a tiny bit more of that which our brains are capable, we would be able to accomplish more in our lives than we ever dreamed.
  • NOTHING is impossible.
  • I have complete and total control of my life–my thoughts, my deeds, my circumstances–and I can change these any time I choose.
  • The physical world is an illusion. Our perceptions of what is real and/or true are based on our beliefs, our thoughts, our heritage, our religious teachings, society, and many more influences.
  • I am so much more than my physical body.

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                                    Crystal on the property

 

 

 

So, what exactly did I experience? How did it feel? Why would anyone take the time to explore something like this? Wasn’t I scared? Did I experience other levels of consciousness? Did I leave my physical body? Did I encounter intelligences from other dimensions?

Stay tuned!                                                                                                                    (PS–the answer to the last four questions is yes.)

Voyage into the Mind and Limitless Possibilities

My heart is beating fast with anticipation, frustration and excitement because I’m so inspired I want to climb out of my skin. My next book is swirling in my mind like a mad tornado, ripping up everything in its path: ideas are bouncing around in my head, in the pages of my notebook, scribbled on scraps of paper that get scattered all over the house, and saved in dozens of computer files. In other words, the story is still working itself out but not fast enough to catch up with my emotions. That’s often what happens to me. I don’t write the story, or the poetry that comes out of my hands—they write themselves. But it’s coming. I still need to do some research though, and that takes time.

As a means of better understanding the revelations I’ve been shown about the power of the body, mind, and spirit, and in order to more effectively relate what I’ve learned through my books, in a few weeks, I’m attending the 6-day Gateway Voyage program at The Monroe Institute (TMI) in Virginia. TMI is dedicated to educating people from all walks of life and from over the world about peak human performance under the premise that human beings are much more than their physical bodies and they use sound to induce altered states of consciousness. That’s exactly how my out-of-body experience (OBE) happened to me—sound waves (in my case through live music) lifted me out of my body and showed me my definition of self, God, truth, and the meaning of my life, so TMI seemed like the next logical step.

In retrospect, it’s no surprise that TMI came to me in the serendipitous manner in which it did. When I first had my OBE during Sammy Hagar’s concert in Mexico in 2003, I had no idea what had happened to me. I thought it was my imagination. Or the heat. Or the tequila. But things changed instantly in my life as a result, and I knew that heat or tequila or my imagination were not enough to maintain the ongoing and exceedingly incredible things that I soon found taking place in my life.

I kept a journal, because the things that were happening to me were so hard for me to believe and so wonderful. These things didn’t happen to ordinary people like me! But they were. Fearing for my sanity while at the same time, feeling in complete awe at all the events taking place, I sought concrete explanations. After my Internet search of the words “altered states of consciousness” brought up a book titled Muddy Tracks by Frank DeMarco, I checked the book out of my local library and eventually bought it.

As I read the first few chapters of Frank’s book, I became disgusted with myself for harboring the ridiculous notion that I could ever write a book about what was happening to me. “There’s no reason for me to try to write a book about all this,” I told myself. “Frank already wrote it!” DeMarco was saying the exact same things that I was going to say–and although I initially felt discouraged as far as the writing of my own book, it was such a relief to discover that I wasn’t losing my mind because obviously, these things happened to other people too. But Frank’s story also differed from mine in a lot of ways, one of which was his mentioning of a place in Virginia called The Monroe Institute and how it helped him travel out of his body to places all over the world and to other dimensions.

The more I read Muddy Tracks, the more I got the feeling that I was supposed to contact Mr. DeMarco, but I kept pushing the thought away, telling myself that it was ridiculous. What would I say to him? And the moment I had these thoughts, I read in Muddy Tracks, how Frank was considering writing to the author of a book he was reading. The title was something about a praying mantis, I think. One day as he was pondering all this, he noticed a praying mantis clinging to the outside of his screen door, and he took it as a sign that he should indeed contact that author. But like me, he told himself he was being ridiculous and he didn’t know what to say to her, so he talked himself out of it. A year later, he finally decided to reach out to that author but when he did, he discovered that she had recently passed away. He would never know the impact that author would have had on his life.

When I read this in Frank’s book, I nearly fell out of my chair. It was as if he had read my mind and was telling me not to make the same mistake he did. So with trepidation, I emailed him, telling myself, “He’s a famous writer. He’ll never answer me.”

Days later, I received an email from him.

We exchanged emails for a little while and he was very encouraging and kind. At the time I was still unsure of where my experiences were leading me and I was afraid, so I was rather vague about whom the famous celebrity was that was involved in my story and other details.

Years passed. I wrote my book, got an official endorsement from Sammy, then proceeded to try and find an agent. After countless rejection letters, I decided to self-publish. I knew I had a good book. I knew it was well-written. But something told me to contact Mr. DeMarco again. Maybe he’d be interested in hearing what became of my experiences. Maybe he’d even write me a blurb of endorsement! I almost talked myself out of it again because I didn’t want to bother him, but something within me insisted, so I emailed him once more.

Not only did he write a blurb for my book, but he gave me the name of his publisher and told me he would recommend me to him because he thought his publisher might be interested in my story since he specialized in New Age books.

I contacted Frank’s publisher and he asked for my book proposal, which I sent. Then I held my breath. I’d been through this process before, but something about this time felt different. Within a week, the publisher told me that he loved my book and wanted to publish it.

I later learned that my publisher too, had participated in several workshops at The Monroe Institute, and when the opportunity recently presented itself for me to go, I jumped on it without giving it much thought. Part of me scolded, “It’s too expensive! Think of all the other things you could do with that money!” But, as is now typical of the serendipity and synchronicity that has poured into my life since my OBE in 2003 at Sammy’s concert, it all just fell into my lap and I felt nudged by an unseen force, so I’m doing it! I’ve learned over the years that when something happens so effortlessly like that, whether I understand its significance at the time or not, it’s always in my  best interest to see it through.

I will keep a journal while I’m there to record my experiences. From what I hear, I’m sure they will be vast. And although I’m going there with no expectations other than to gain a better understanding of the power of my mind and spirit, since I’ve already had an OBE, I’m curious to find out what will happen during my Gateway Voyage.

Stay tuned.

(For more information on The Monroe Institute, please click here: The Monroe Institute)

 

Mitochondrial Eve

Author’s note: This is a post I’ve been working on for a long time. I hesitated to post it due to its controversial nature. However, I think it is important to expand our horizons by considering different perspectives, because when we are exposed to new theories, it opens our minds a little bit and helps us grow as human beings. In no way do I intend to offend anyone’s belief system. Please also know that I am not stating here whether I believe or disbelief any of the contents of this post. It is a fact that Mitochondrial Eve exists, but its implications are subjective. And that’s what I find so fascinating, so I wanted to introduce new concepts and possibilities to those who may never have considered this subject before.

In 1987, scientists discovered a common ancestor to all humans alive today. She lived in Africa 200,000 years ago and was given the name “Eve,” not to be confused with the Eve from the biblical story of the Garden of Eden. Mitochondrial Eve was not the first woman from whom all humans were descended, just a common ancestor.

According to Nova’s website, Mitochondrial Eve was actually the most recent common ancestor through matrilineal descent of all humans living today. That is, all people alive today can trace some of their genetic heritage through their mothers back to this one woman.

Trace our heritage through our mother’s side? How is this possible?

Whenever an egg cell is fertilized, nuclear chromosomes from a sperm cell enter the egg and combine with the egg’s nuclear DNA, producing a mixture of both parents’ genetic code. The mtDNA from the sperm cell, however, is left behind, outside of the egg cell.

So the fertilized egg contains a mixture of the father and mother’s nuclear DNA and an exact copy of the mother’s mtDNA, but none of the father’s mtDNA. The result is that mtDNA is passed on only along the maternal line. This means that all of the mtDNA in the cells of a person’s body are copies of his or her mother’s mtDNA, and all of the mother’s mtDNA is a copy of her mother’s, and so on. No matter how far back you go, mtDNA is always inherited only from the mother.

Like the debate between Creationism and Evolution, the theory of Mitochondrial Eve is also highly controversial.

But let’s just assume for a moment that it’s true, and if so, could it have an effect on the manner in which women are treated even today? In my Women’s Studies classes in college, we discussed the goddess theory and how in the beginning, woman was worshipped because woman was the bearer of life. Among her sacred symbols were the serpent, the apple and others which through time became associated with evil and sin in Christianity (the story of the Garden of Eden is but one example). Perhaps this sowed the seeds for the oppression of women.

If it’s true that our heritage can be traced back to one woman, isn’t it interesting that even today when she marries, a woman often takes the surname of her husband? I wonder how different the world might be if it were the other way around.

On a more positive note, I am fascinated by the way “the Great Mother” has affected my life. I have heard differing opinions of this term. Some believe “The Great Mother” was Mary, the mother of Jesus and she very well may have been. But I tend to think of her as half of Father God, as in Mother God/Father God; the two of them being two halves of the one entity I call God. For me, the yin/yang symbol represents this concept perfectly.

Yin/yang represents all opposites of the universe–long and short, postive and negative, male and female, up and down, etc. It’s also interesting to note that each half contains the seed of the other. To me, that symbolizes our personal duality: we all have male and female hormones and we all have both positive and negative qualities, but in order to be whole, we must embrace both sides.

The term “Mother Earth” is also a common expression, along with “Mother Nature.” perhaps as a complement to “Sky Father” or “Heavenly Father” (the yin/yang principle again). See http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sky_father.

In any case, I wonder whether the discovery of Mitochondrial Eve was a possible sign that it is time for us to embrace the sacred feminine in ourselves and each other. If you don’t believe in signs, it can only be a beneficial thing to embrace all aspects of ourselves and others, can it not?

 

Celebrating Joy and Gratitude and YOU!

To me, it matters not, which holiday one celebrates, whether it’s Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanza, Solstice or nothing at all, but I’d like to share something I wrote in my journal the other day because it’s about experiencing joy and most of us could use more joy in our lives:

According to the Mayan calendar, today wasn’t supposed to come, yet here we are: days away from Christmas. To me, Christmas is a magical time, and this year, I’ve been trying to sneak in little moments of joy whenever possible–to pause and really appreciate the moment–because obviously, December 21, 2012 wasn’t the end of the world, but perhaps it will be the beginning of a new world where peace and love prevail at last.

I was walking through our local mall the other day when all of a sudden, a children’s choir began to sing, diverting my attention from the rush I was in. When I looked in the direction of the sound, I saw parents and grandparents crowded together in coats and boots and beaming as they watched their little ones perform. The children looked to be about 5-6 years-old.

I paused for a moment to listen to their sweet, little voices, but a tear formed in my eye and a lump rose in my throat as I thought about the twenty 5-6 year-olds who were gunned down last week at an elementary school in Connecticut. I don’t think I’ve ever cried as hard for people I didn’t even know, as I did for those babies. That inconceivable event NEVER should have happened.

I didn’t stay and listen to the children at the mall for long because I didn’t want those kids’ parents and grandparents to see me crying. Instead, I tried to focus on how it felt when my kids were that age and had to perform in the mall like that. There was never a mother more proud than I was as I watched my kids deliver their practiced lines while dressed as Santa’s reindeer or elves.

When I walked out of the mall the other day, huge, fluffy snowflakes began to fall from the grey sky and a sort of hush seemed to descend over the parking lot, even though people were scampering here and there to finish their last-minute shopping.

I stood beside my car for a moment and I smiled and sighed at the beauty of the snowflakes. I wished I could have stood there taking it all in for hours, but it was getting dark and I had a lot of things I needed to accomplish before nightfall, plus I knew I was probably getting dirty looks from impatient drivers waiting for me to vacate my parking spot.

Days later, I sat on the floor in front of our Christmas tree–we bought a real tree this year for the first time in over a decade–so I sat and gazed at the tree decorated with lights, tinsel and color and I thought to myself, “It just sings of joy!” And I wondered, why is it that the anticipation of Christmas is so magical? –the songs on the radio, the decorations and colored lights in the stores and all over town, gifts beneath the tree–yet once Christmas Day is over, so is the magic.

And how can I tap into that magical feeling and joy that only comes at Christmastime, throughout the year? I wonder if I’d still feel the magic if I couldn’t afford a Christmas tree or gifts for those I love. But like “The Whos Down in Whoville” in the Dr. Seuss story of “How the Grinch Stole Christmas,” I realize that the magic of Christmas–and joy–do not come from a store–they come from the heart.

So as 2012 winds to a close, I want to extend a sincere and heartfelt thank-you to all of you for your love and support of this website and my book “Dance of the Electric Hummingbird.” Without you, my book would simply be a conglomerate of typed words in my computer or a bunch of sentiments in my head. YOU helped make it reality by buying the book, telling your friends about it, by attending my book signings and by being there for me every step of the way. I couldn’t have accomplished this without you and it means more to me than words can relate. Please do not ever give up on your dreams and never stop believing in the marvelous and magnificent gift that is YOU.

Wishing you and yours the happiest of holidays and a New Year filled with perfect healthy, prosperity, peace, love and joy.

~Baja Rock Pat

Neurosurgeon Has A Near Death Experience Similar to Mine at a Rock Concert

Ever since I had an OBE (out-of-body experience) in 2003 in the middle of Sammy Hagar’s rock concert, I’m noticing more and more people speaking out about having these types of experiences. Dr. Eben Alexander, respected neurosurgeon, describes an experience infinitely similar to mine, although his took place as he lay in a coma due to menigitis.

It never ceases to amaze me when I hear of these experiences–especially those of respected doctors and other professionals–and how we all describe the same thing: a sense of floating above one’s body, a loss of language and physical senses, a feeling of euphoria and oneness with something greater than ourselves accompanied by an immense feeling of acceptance, warmth, comfort, and an overwhelming knowledge that love is all that matters. Alexander describes it as a “warm awareness of the Divine.”

What also fascinates me is that Dr. Alexander describes “seeing” a melody spinning in front of him. I too, saw the words of the song Sammy Hagar was singing that night–they became tangible objects that literally lifted me up and out of my body.

Here is a video of Dr. Alexander describing his experience:

So what does it all mean? That there is an entire realm of consciousness available to all of us–and some of us become aware of it through meditation, or an OBE or an NDE (near-death experience), but it is nonetheless real. And magnificent. And when one encounters this consciousness, one is forever changed and so filled with joy that one cannot help but want to see others experience the same thing.