Tag Archives: Monterey

Animal Spirits and Psychic Communication

Cali Kitty

“Heaven goes by favour. If it went by merit, you would stay out and your dog would go in.”

– Mark Twain

I’ve often been asked if pets appear in readings or as spirits. Yes to both. It’s only natural that we would want to know more about our beloved animals on the other side.

Although the loss of a pet brings great grief, just as with our beloved humans, we sometimes wonder if another species has the capability of either surviving death or having the ability to communicate. I have seen animal spirits come in with other friends and family members during a reading. It’s actually not uncommon to see them, and they actually can break through to this side.

Let me just relate an example here of this. First, those of you who know me, know that I am very down-to-earth. I’m not your typical New Age, believe everything a crystal tells you or only magic is the cure, everything has a psychic meaning, person. Quite frankly, I’m hard to convince – which is why I relate my own experiences because at least I know I personally experienced them and feel better about assessing them.

“If a dog will not come to you after having looked you in the face, you should go home and examine your conscience.”

– Woodrow Wilson

So, when a woman named Barbara came to me wanting to connect with her beloved dog, honestly, I couldn’t just say “yes,” and do it. Now, this woman is married to a prominent political figure. She had heard about me via the “grapevine.” I agreed to read for her, but……I did put a qualification on it. I told her that I could not just read to try to reach her dog. I insisted, actually for my own validity, that I had to read her to see about “real” people who had passed first.

Honestly, I could have just told her anything about a dog and she probably would have believed me. Let’s face it, how many things does a dog do anyway? They eat, sleep, get their bellies scratched, bark, woof, woof; eat sleep, get their bellies scratched, bark, woof, woof; eat, sleep, get their bellies scratched, bark, woof, woof. Get the point?

“Man is a dog’s idea of what God should be.”

– Holbrook Jackson

To make sure that I actually was getting her dog, I truly felt that ethically I had to try to get in contact with other humans who had passed. I think Barbara was a little surprised that I insisted on this method of contacting her dog, but I felt it very important. Thus began our reading.

There were a number of people who came through during her reading. Once in awhile, I find myself going very deep – maybe it is some trance-type state, I don’t know – and when I do that, first, I’m not aware of it, and second, I don’t remember what I’ve said. It is pretty rare for me, but occasionally it does happen. Well, this time it happened, too.

As I sat there with her, knowing she was longing for her dog, I do remember talking about her mother’s sister, or her aunt. That’s the last I remember of what I said. Suddenly, I “came to” and there she was sitting there with her jaw dropped and exclaiming, “But no one knew about that – not even my husband!” (Her family lives in a different state.) I asked her what she was talking about – I just remembered her aunt. She excitedly said, “You said to me….’She killed herself, she shot herself.’ But no one knew – it’s been a family secret!!”

Well, admittedly, even I was surprised – and a little shook up – I don’t like falling into a state of consciousness (or unconsciousness, as it may be) and not remembering what I’m saying. But, the revelation of this family secret was also the most important validation she could have been given!

After that, I was comfortably able to bring through her dog which had been mercifully put to sleep and Barbara felt awful about. But the dog appeared, no longer limping, in pain or old, carrying a bone with a pink ribbon tied in a bow around it and dropped it at her feet. His way of saying, “You gave me the gift of graceful relief, and it was my time to go. I love you.”

Many of us have lost our loving pets – I’ve lost more than my share, as I am a great animal lover – and the pain we feel which can linger for many years, can at least be minimized, even for a few minutes, when our beloved pet returns in spirit to say “Hello.”

Love your pets, treat them with respect and care. They are God’s gift of unconditional love to us. And just know, that although we miss them, that they still love us and are there.

“Recollect that the Almighty, who gave the dog to be companion of our pleasures and our toils, hath invested him with a nature noble and incapable of deceit.”

– Sir Walter Scott

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The Gypsy Fortune Teller and The Palm Reading

Crystal Ball and Fortune TellerGypsies. Yes, gypsies. That’s what I’m going to tell you about today. The gypsy fortune teller.

Last summer, my friend, Julie, and I decided to go see a local fortune teller — a gypsy. Her name is Janet. She and her husband have a little house not far from where we work. The little white stucco home has a little white picket fence around it.

A bright blue neon palm hangs in the window. Yes…just like you see in movies. The blue neon palm hangs wide open, fingers extended — palm up — just waiting for our money.

I knew she was a gypsy. How many “real” psychics have a blue neon palm hanging from their front window? That bright blue sign just begged for my money.

Julie and I left work at noon one sunny afternoon. She quickly drove us to the blue palm and white house, where we parked outside. Dubious, yet anticipatory, we sat in the car debating if we should really go in. It was only $10.00 for a palm reading. I was embarassed. After all, I knew it was a gypsy — I didn’t want anyone to see me going in there. Actually, Julie wasn’t about to advertise the fact that SHE was going in, either……but we did.

Climbing out of her car, we strode to the door of the little white stucco home. We knocked. The screen squeaked open and there stood Janet — just like a normal person — with her little 2-year-old son. In what sounded like an Eastern European accent, she asked what we were wanting — we said the palm reading. We entered directly into her small living room, cramply filled with a wide-screen tv, and an expensive audio system. I took a seat on the couch, while Janet, as she introduced herself, immediately led Julie into a small adjoining room.

I was left with her son. The little tot wanted to play. I guess I was elected babysitter. He tossed a ball around, and hit several pieces of furniture. I really had no choice but to join him on the floor to keep him quiet.

Julie and Janet were deep in her reading. About 20 minutes later, Julie emerged, gave me a sly look, and took her turn at babysitting. I entered the small room.

The room had one small, but high window in it. The room was a buffed beige color, and there was a Catholic altar at one end with candles on it. Statues of Mary abounded. A computer sat in another corner.

There were no dim lights, and I took a seat on a small couch where Janet joined me. She took my hand, turned my palm up and began to read. She told me of a service man in my life — that part WAS true. I don’t really remember much else, to be honest — so I guess it wasn’t terribly revealing. After twenty minutes I was finished. Janet and I left the small enclosure to join Julie who was still playing with her son.

Julie and I gave each other silent looks of “Well, what did she say??” to each other. Quickly we left her home and clambered into the car.

Julie seemed to feel that Janet was pretty accurate with her. She was telling Julie about love in her life. But Janet also cautioned Julie that she should have her aura “cleansed” by the gypsy. Julie was concerned — did her aura really need cleaning?? I assured her that I would clean it for her for free, if it really needed it. (I think the gypsy wanted to take her to the cleaners!! Ha, ha!!)

It was interesting and amusing. Well, several weeks later, Julie wanted to go again to see Janet. This time we were met by her “associate,” a young lady who was about 20. She, too, had that odd accent. Janet remembered us. She began talking to this associate, I shall call Lydia, in their strange-sounding language. Then they approached me and Julie. Looking at Julie and then at Lydia, Janet talked again in their language. Lydia was doing the readings today.

She ushered Julie into that same room. After Julie left, Lydia read for me. When I asked if she could tell me more, give me more specific information, she merely said, “For a LIFE reading, you must pay $100.” I decided I didn’t want to know about my life THAT badly.

After we left their house with the blue neon palm in the window, Julie was upset. Why, she exclaimed, that Lydia told her the same things that Janet did, and added information that Julie had already revealed to Janet! Janet had remembered her and told Lydia all about her! Julie was quite fraught.

Shortly after our encounters at the gypsy palm house, we saw an ad in the local paper for yet another gypsy — another blue neon palm, but in another location. This gypsy had an ad for a palm reading for only $5.00 (with the coupon!). For $5.00, we figured, “why not?” So, Julie called.

The gypsy responded — “Oh, no, THAT was a misprint…it is really $25.00 for a reading.” So, we never did go. Another woman we know saw the same ad, only months later but in a different newspaper. She called for her $5.00 reading — only to be told that, “Oh, no, THAT was a misprint….” Hmmmm, seems funny how that SAME misprint keeps appearing exactly the same.

Maybe Julie and I ought to go and read THEIR palms. Let’s see, that’s only $5.00 a reading from us. Oops, sorry, now that I have you here, I meant to tell you that it’s really $50.00 a reading. What? You mean you didn’t know ahead of time? Well, let me see your palm, and I will tell you the future …. if you cross my palm with money, you will be sure to make us rich!

Sometimes when I drive down the street at night I see that blue neon sign bright as the sun in the dark sky. The finger beckoning me in….”Come and I will tell you your fortune…just $5.00 for a reading”….and I keep on driving by until the blue neon sign is just a faded blue blink in my rearview mirror.

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ELLEN BURSTYN, Mystic Sufis and NOT the Ya Ya Sisterhood — My Weekend at her Home with the Mystical Lettuce Spinner

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The movie, The Ya Ya Sisterhood, made me remember my weekend stay at the home of actress, Ellen Burstyn, in the late 1970s. This experience also demonstrates how certain synchronistic events can lead to an interesting adventure.

At this stage in my life, I had become very interested in holistic health. I was working at the Veterans Administration Hospital in Buffalo, New York, and I was very discouraged and, often, upset with the way patients were treated. I had come to the conclusion that a holistic approach to health was more humane and afforded the patient more respect. Thus, I made the decision that I wanted to actually WORK in holistic health.

I did not know then that the Edgar Cayce foundation had a medical clinic (the one referred to in my previous diary entry called ‘The Edgar Cayce Reincarnation Group Karma Experience’). So, I began a search for someplace to be that would help me help others through holistic health.

I was in my Search for God (Edgar Cayce) study group which met weekly. There were only about 4 or 5 of us, however, it kept me connected with spiritual ideals which were of vital importance to me. We would meet in a different person’s home each week, read passages from the Search for God books that were derived from Edgar Cayce’s psychic readings. We’d then discuss their meaning, and find ways to apply the discussed ideals in our lives that week. I found it very fulfilling.

Thus, I was pretty tuned in at that time. I wasn’t married, didn’t have a child or major responsibilities, and had lots of free time after work to delve into spiritual matters. It was a good time.

My search for my place in holistic health began. One day I had picked up a magazine – I’m not even sure now which one, but probably something like “Whole Life.” I read some articles and then perused the ads. I’ve found ads to be very stimulating in generating ideas. (I never BUY the products, but I can get some great ideas from them!)

I ran across an ad for The World Symposium on Humanity to be held the summer of 1979, to be videotaped between London, Toronto, and Los Angeles. It mentioned the numerous famous people who would be speaking and they seemed to be of a New Age orientation. It didn’t specifically mention holistic health, however, it just had that “feel” to it. So, I wrote to the address in the ad, explaining that I was looking for a job in the holistic health field. And I waited.

About two weeks later, I received a call in Buffalo at about 1:00 a.m. – I was sound asleep. The call came from someone named Guru Raj Singh in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada. Guru Raj Singh said he read my letter and wondered if I was still interested in something in holistic health? “Yes, certainly,” I said. So, he said there might be an Administrative Assistant position with The World Symposium on Humanity. Because I was in Buffalo, he asked if I could go to New York City to meet him there for an interview? In fact, would I spend the entire weekend there, working with the Symposium coordinators – I could take notes, transcribe them, do whatever needed to be done of a clerical nature for them? I jumped at the chance. We agreed to meet the next weekend in Manhattan.

Fortunately, my friend, Paul Boroff, a pharmacist I knew from the University of Buffalo was now working at Sloan-Kettering (Cancer) Hospital in Manhattan. I called him and asked if I could spend a night there while I was waiting to meet this Guru Raj Singh. Paul is very conservative, and he agreed, but with trepidation.

I arrived in New York and went to Paul’s apartment. It was small, as are many New York apartments. He wanted to know just what I was doing there and who this Guru Raj Singh was. I explained about the World Symposium on Humanity and that Guru Raj Singh would meet me at Paul’s apartment the next morning.

The next morning came, and Guru Raj Singh appeared at the door. Paul opened it, and there was this man: in a totally white outfit, a white turban wrapped around his head, a dark beard and mustache, and a silver knife at his waist. I thought Paul would faint right on the spot! Paul turned to me, gave me a very pained and twisted look, and rapidly whispered: “Sharon, do you have ANY idea what you are getting yourself into??????!!!” Being (probably overly) trusting, I assured him it was okay, and followed Guru Raj Singh to a waiting cab.

I learned that Guru Raj Singh was a Sikh, someone who followed the teachings of Guru Ram Das. I asked him where we were going and he explained that the hostess of the World Symposium on Humanity was an actress living outside New York City. Her name was Ellen Burstyn.

Actually, I’m not very impressed by famous people only because one of my sisters was famous in gymnastics (she won 3rd place against the Russians in the 1977 World Games in Moscow), and I know that famous people aren’t any different (except they have more publicity, and some have more money). So, quite honestly, I didn’t even KNOW who Ellen Burstyn was.

The cab dropped us off at a huge stone home next to the Hudson River near Palisades, New York. Walking toward the door, it opened and there were two young men and a woman with greasy, reddish-blonde hair, about chin-length, with a long mu-mu, and bare feet. The woman introduced herself: “Hi, I’m Hadia, and we’re going to go to the store – make yourself at home.” Guru Raj Singh and I entered into the kitchen area, he took me to a small office, and I asked, “Where’s Ellen?” He quizzically looked at me, and said, “You just met her.” I said, “No I didn’t. I didn’t meet anyone named Ellen.” He kind of rolled his eyes and then said, “THAT was Ellen – Hadia is her SUFI name!” Hmmm, I guess I had a LOT more to learn!!

I discovered that this huge home was Ellen’s. However, she shared it with a couple of struggling actors who rented rooms there. On the wall hung photos of sufis dancing and spinning in mystic meditation. Being summer, it was lovely. There was a huge yard facing the river. A wooden, winding staircase led upstairs. I ended up having my own room, with a fireplace, adjoining Guru Raj Singh’s room. Then I went back to the office, where I was shown the desk and typewriter – in the room were posters of Ellen’s plays and shows she had been in, and a golden statue stood in there. In a way, I wish I had known about her beforehand, because I think all the things I was seeing would have had more meaning. But to me, she was just a kind hostess.

That weekend was a whirlwind of activity. I don’t even remember all the people who were there. Many names were a blur. I was pretty nervous and shy. There were lots of little focus groups meeting. I had a tape recorder and taped their conversations for later transcription (which ended up being nearly impossible).

We had a wonderful dinner one night. It was held in the glorious dining room. We had shrimp, salads, Vichyssoise (cold French potato soup) and other delicious foods. I remember Ellen helping in the kitchen, surrounded by mismatched silverware, cutting up vegetables when the phone rang. She sounded agitated at the phone call. She hung up exasperated and exclaimed “That Muhammad Ali, he wants to come over and I told him ‘No!’ – he just monopolizes conversations!” Well, that was interesting.

There were lots of pillows scattered in the living room, music, singing, and a dancer named Zuleikha. You know, I never got a lot done. It was actually a pretty disorganized group.

And what did I bring away from this weekend visit at Ellen Burstyn’s house? Was it like the Ya Ya Sisterhood?? No, it was the lettuce spinner. Huh? You may ask. What about the lettuce spinner? What can I say? There was something about it that just grabbed me. I came away from her home desperately wanting a lettuce spinner! Eventually, I DID get my very own lettuce spinner. It was very symbolic to me.

Now, you may ask, why wasn’t I focused on the rich and famous? A lettuce spinner?? Actually, though, I think it’s a fitting memory. You see, I think even the most mundane objects can elicit higher meanings – just like that simple ad resulted in this wonderful weekend. It’s a spiritual lettuce spinner. Remember Hadia and the Sufis? I think that lettuce spinner was a spiritual clue, a link to a higher realm, a symbolic thrust into a new world. After all, each time that lettuce spinner spins, I see the dancing mystical Sufis…..and Hadia……spinning, spinning, spinning……..

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A Visit From My Dad – Our Story

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My dad, William Tenney, whom I called “Saint Bill,” was wonderful. I love him very much.

Dad passed away almost two years ago. He was 86, but still had swatches of brown hair amidst the grey. He never had a bald spot, and he walked a mile each day until the day of his last stroke.

Simply speaking, my dad lived a full life; a life filled with challenges, yet simple joys.

As a kid, he grew up in Superior, Wisconsin. His mother had been married before with other children. My dad’s dad, whom I never met, moved from Missouri to Wisconsin and met my dad’s mom. She was Norwegian; my grandfather – my dad’s father – was Irish.  Dad moved to Buffalo after having been there with the Merchant Marines – when I asked him why in the world he would move from Wisconsin to Buffalo, New York, he said, “It was warmer!”

My dad was raised a Christian Scientist. He always had a positive attitude.  Although my three younger sisters, my mom and I, were night owls, he’d religiously call to us on weekends very early in the morning, whistling and singing, “Rise and shine, it’s a beautiful morning! The birds are singing, the sun is shining.” Then he’d be in the kitchen flipping pancakes and making scrambled eggs. He always had a full glass of milk with all his meals.

I came along first. My dad was 21 when I was born in Buffalo, New York. I have photos of him holding me as a baby. He always loved children. There was a delightful part of him that could become child-like in appreciation – the “oooohs” and “ahhhhs” when shown a new computer device that he knew nothing about, yet knew this was one of those “ooooh” moments. At the time of my birth we lived in the City of Buffalo on the Westside of town. It was a huge turn-of-the century brick building near Bryant Street and Elmwood Avenue.   Huge oak trees lined the streets, and it was a vibrant neighborhood. I had a wonderful old woman as a neighbor, and she played a grand piano. I remember going to her apartment often to listen to her play.

When I was seven, my first sister was born. I immediately learned how to change diapers and make formula and heat baby bottles. At first it was fun.

With the coming birth of my first sister, my parents decided to move to the suburbs in Cheektowaga, New York. To me, it was very sad, as I loved the city, and the tree-lined streets, and my friends. It was then that the wheels began turning in the opposite direction. It was the 1950s and families were expected to have about four children. That’s what my parents had – only they couldn’t afford them, and I think we all suffered for it. With the age difference between me and my three sisters, there was an invisible barrier that stood between us – they had their circle together, I had just me.

Our family moved to the suburban projects into a row-house that had a coal-heated furnace. The coal man would come and the truck dumped all those black cubes of coal into our coal bin. Dad would shovel it into the roaring furnace during those long, long cold winters. I’d pull a chair into the furnace room and sit in front of the furnace as if it were a fireplace. Living in an apartment in the city was one thing because lots of families did that. But renting in the projects in the suburbs and not owning a home was looked down upon. Obviously, it was the poor people who lived in the projects – ours was called Tiorunda.

When I was ten, my next baby sister was born.  I remember my little sister, the next after me, breaking the arm of the baby – she had tried to pull her over in the crib and that was it – poor little baby had a big cast on her arm. When I was 14, my last sister was born.  By then I remember that we were still in the projects, and our neighbors across the way had six boys — my mom just had our fourth girl.  I remember Dad carrying my youngest sister in his arms while he went to visit with the dad and his sixth son.  Dad and his sense of humor, held out my youngest sister and said, “Want to switch?”  They both laughed, but I guess dad did want that son.  With each sibling, the responsibilities grew. I learned all aspects of mothering. I had numerous responsibilities.

My dad worked at the Bethlehem Steel Plant as a foreman. It was grueling work and grueling hours. He worked shift-work, which meant one week he worked from 7 a.m. – 3 p.m., the next week from 3 p.m. – 11 p.m., and the next week 11 p.m. to 7 a.m. I don’t know how he did it. He was known to only sleep a few hours a night, yet he thought that we who slept normal hours, slept too much.   Because we had moved into the projects with the birth of my first sister, there were still two other sisters to be born. With each new daughter, my dad began working double shifts to cover costs. When he was 53, he had an accident at the Steel Plant and one of his fingers was cut off. I remember saying to him, “Oh, Dad, I’m so sorry about you losing that finger.” And with his typical positive attitude he said, “Don’t worry about it. I had it for 53 good years!” That’s how he turned things around.

My grandmother, my mother’s mother, had a big farm in Alden, New York.  Fifty-six acres of farmland.  She and our “grampa” raised Black Angus and gladiolas.  That was my time of respite.  We’d get to go to the farm and I could wander on my own out to the back of the acreage down to a creek with Johnny Appleseed apples.  I would see red fox in the distance, hear the cheep of birds, and the whistle of the breeze as it cooled my face in the humid summer.  My sisters stayed back at the house because they were much younger — I just walked and walked for hours in perfect silence.

Dad loved the farm, too.  During harvest season, we’d all ride up the silo while it was being filled with cut corn for the cows.  I remember the day that Dad was out in the pasture and the bull happened to be there.  Oh, boy, that bull caught sight of him and it started charging.  Even while hoping Dad would make it out of there, I couldn’t help but burst out laughing at the sight of him tearing through the pasture as fast as he could go and then “BOOM!” he leaped over the electric wire fence, and dropped on the wet ground just beyond the bull!  What a sight to see!  That was my dad.

Our mom had become ill and was in and out of hospitals for years. She had nine surgeries in ten years. As mother’s little helper, I took over with the kids, and after school, I cooked meals each night for six people, did the laundry, cleaned the house and did the dishes (no dishwashers then). I made my dad’s lunch each day. He loved cold baked bean sandwiches with a slice of onion on top and some ketchup. I kid you not. Although he ate them every day, I never did eat a baked bean sandwich.

On the day I graduated high school with a Regent’s Diploma (meaning I had done additional work to get a “higher” diploma granted by New York State), my dad immediately said I must go with him to the Steel Plant to get a job! I was horrified. As a poor kid and a girl, I was not expected to go to college, although I desperately wanted to go.  It was decided, though, that I would work, not attend college. I could not imagine working at the Steel Plant and I was panicked. Serendipitously, I had (apparently) taken a civil service test during my typing class in high school. That week I received a letter stating that I was number one on the job list, and to come to the State University of New York at Buffalo for a job interview. Thank goodness I was hired, and became a Clerk Typist.   I no longer had to worry about working at the Steel Plant.  My first job was in the Harriman Library at the old Main Street campus in Buffalo.  It was while working full-time that I took college classes at night.

It was a difficult time for me then, but also for my dad. He had many trials and tribulations, and these are just a few.

Now working, I finally moved out of the house. Ironically, I saved more money living on my own, because I had to pay half of my salary to stay at my parents while still caring for the kids after work, cooking for six, doing the housekeeping, and having little rest. I was able to save enough money to go to Europe for three months. I landed in London and traveled through all the countries down to Spain and then back up again to London. It was my dream to go to Europe, and I did it.

I would tell Dad of my travels around the world. He had traveled the world as a Merchant Marine. Because of poor medical testing in those days, he was denied the regular military because of “sugar” in his urine – but he never had diabetes. He still wanted to be part of the coalition that fought during World War II. He traveled all over with the Merchant Marines. He especially loved Italy, the scenery, the food, its people, and, of course, the beautiful women.

Each time I moved to another state, especially after my mother died, he would always make a trip out to visit me. He did not visit me in Arizona, and that was the year my mother died. When I later moved to Boulder, Colorado, he was there.   He loved Boulder! Never had he been in a town where they had actual leather on the bus seats and they weren’t all knifed up (kid you not). When partiers would walk around with bottles of beer at night, they didn’t toss them on lawns, or smash them on streets, they would line them up carefully in a row at the edge of a sidewalk, ready to be picked up by the garbage men. As we walked through the local mall with all the cars, he marveled that there was no rust on the cars! After all, he was used to Wisconsin and Buffalo – winter reigned and so did rust. With the amazing Flatiron mountains rising above the town where the Rocky Mountains began he was in total awe.

When my daughter was born, he immediately flew to Seattle to see her. I was so happy. He was such a proud Grampa. I was touched that he would come all that way to see Celene.

When I divorced my husband in Seattle, I came back “home” to Dad. He was a surrogate father to my daughter – we both adored him.   I realize now that he was about 67 when we arrived on the doorstep needing help. He welcomed us and my daughter, Celene, now had her Granddaddy. I went back to school to finish my college degrees. During those cold winters with ten feet of snow, and me at school, my dad would fetch Celene from the school bus after kindergarten. Although the house was only 3 houses from the bus stop, he drove with the car heated up, lifted Celene off the big yellow bus so she wouldn’t be buried in the snow, and shuttled her into the warm cozy car – then drove up to the drive way, three houses away.

At my college graduation, earning a degree in Communications, I had a plaque made up for my dad. He was unaware of it. During the ceremony, I had permission to ask my dad up to the podium. He had that child-like look of glee and surprise, and as he approached me, I spoke to the audience and handed him the plaque. I publicly thanked my dad for being supportive and loving and told him how much I appreciated him. The plaque read: To my Dad, Saint Bill, Thank you for all your support. Love, Sharon.” Everyone applauded and I swear I saw a tear in his eye.

When Celene was six-years-old, I tried to get a job that paid enough for us to live on, but could not find one in Buffalo. I couldn’t manage as a single parent there. I had a friend in Santa Cruz who said I could stay with his mother and get set up there. I figured I didn’t have anything to lose, so why not? I took a Greyhound Bus out while my dad watched Celene, and I checked out Santa Cruz. It was quite the contrast from drab, cold, snowy, rainy, windy Buffalo. Santa Cruz was a California beach town. So, I decided to move.

Eventually, we ended up living in the middle of the redwoods in Felton, just outside of Santa Cruz in the mountains nearby. My dad came out numerous times to visit. He always delighted in the little things. The ocean – the ocean on which he was a Merchant Marine, and was so beautiful to gaze upon. The majestic redwoods, tall and gigantic, overlooking all who stood beneath the towering forest. My dad loved it here. He adored it. He loved that all the houses were different, that each had its personal mark. How he loved nature! I think he was a natural-born Californian, but only discovered that in his late 70s.

As old age crouched on him, he began to lose his memories. Eventually, he was in an assisted living home. One of my sisters sent me a “letter” he was trying to write to me. I would send letters and post cards each week, always attaching a photo of me when I was about five-years old, because he no longer remembered the present. He had written on one of my envelopes in which I had sent a letter, and it said, “Dear Sharon, How are things in California?” By then, he didn’t know how to send a letter, but he certainly knew how to send a thought. I am very grateful to my sister who had the sensitivity to send that envelope to me to let me know that Dad was thinking about me – in the present. I still treasure that simple white envelope with my Dad’s writing on it.

The last time I visited him in Buffalo I brought Celene – unfortunately, he did not remember visiting us in California and when he saw her he exclaimed, “The baby?!” “Yes, the baby, Dad. She’s all grown up.” Such a sad moment it was to realize that twenty years were gone from his memory. I managed to “sneak” a video recorder into the home, and took a good twenty-minute movie of him talking about his life. By then, I knew he did not remember more recent events, so I had created a photo book for him that had old photos of our mom, his sister, other passed relatives whom he would remember, and even managed to get photos of Superior, Wisconsin, and put those in. I got a great photo of one of the “Meteor” whaleback ships from the 1800s there still perched in Superior! My dad regaled us with stories about the ships, and the Merchant Marines, his time on the boats. He told stories of “riding the rails” of trains while he was a teenager. We talked as far back as I could remember.

With his last stroke, he collapsed during one of his daily walks. It was madness after that. The hospital, the various homes until one was found next to an old monastery. Infections, paralysis, sadness. By then, he had lost his house (which he finally bought when I was 18 years-old) and he had nothing. Just as he came into this world with nothing, he was going out with nothing.

It was a conscious decision for him to die when he did. It seemed that the closer he came to death, the more his mind became intact. I will never forget the moment that I feel he decided to starve himself. My sister who had lovingly sent me that envelope on which my dad was trying to write a letter to me, took me around to some yard sales and we bought some pretty hand crocheted afghan blankets. We took them back to my dad, and he looked at them, and now being paralyzed on one side and no longer able to walk, he said, “They look like they would work for a wheelchair.” I knew then – I just felt it – that he knew he would never have his beloved walks. This was the turning point.

The next day he refused to eat. As my sister and I tried to hand feed my dad, he pursed his lips together and shook his head “NO!” We tried to get him to drink. He refused. He rarely said anything at that point, but as one of the nurses came to give him a shot, he screamed out, “No more needles!” He had made his decision.

A week later, family and friends gathered around him in the nursing home bed. We took turns sitting next to him and holding his hand. My dad was deaf since he was a teenager and he read lips. Although I was not as close to the bed as the others, I still could reach his hand and I had a good view of his face and he of mine. Knowing he read lips, I “talked” to him silently. I kept clearly mouthing, “I love you,” and “You’re doing a good job.” He continued to stare at me – we were talking while all around us others were talking, but not to him. We were in silent conversation.

At 12:28 a.m. on November 19th, 2012, my dad passed. He was awake until the very last breath. He wanted to be present for his own death. No matter how much morphine they gave him, he did not close his eyes. He knew this was a pivotal moment of his life, and he wanted to be conscious for it.

With the passing of my dad, came the passing of our family. We were not a perfect family. Me being the oldest and in a different generation from my siblings, it was hard to communicate. I don’t think my sisters actually understood me, except for the one who sent the envelope to me – she knows I’m different but she accepts me. I was always the square peg in the round hole.

Joyfully, I end this on a happy note. My dad came to me several months after he died!! Yes! I saw him in my house! I was in my bedroom and looked into my hallway during the morning. I saw my dad leaning against the wall of the hallway, with a smile. He was dressed in his favorite white cable knit sweater with the leather trim, he had on his khakis, and his brown tied shoes. He held but did not smoke a pipe in his right hand. He looked at least thirty years younger. His hair was full and brown again. My dad had vitality. He was happy. I couldn’t believe that I saw him! He was there for about ten seconds and then gone. Oh, but I saw him from top to bottom and the smile of love on his face.

Dad, I miss you so much. I love you.

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Touched by a Spirit who Strokes My Hand to Give Message & the Portuguese Grampa

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This was an amazing reading to me. I had recently started working at a local County department in downtown Santa Cruz. I didn’t know any of the people with whom I was working, and was just getting to know them. One of them, Julie, was a delightful, funny, and vivacious woman. I heard her talking about calling a “psychic” while she was on her way to the mailroom. I was curious when I heard that and asked her about it – she told me that she did believe in psychics. So…..I said to her, “Would you like me to give you a reading?” Well, obviously, she was quite surprised to see that I said that – I’m sure I don’t give the appearance of someone who does this work, and especially in a law enforcement setting. But Julie agreed. As some of you know, I like to read for people soon after I meet them (if they’re interested, of course) because the less I know beforehand, the easier it is.

We found an empty office and sat down. I had no idea what to expect. As it ended up, I should have expected a lot – because that’s what we got!!

As I sat there, I suddenly “saw” this older man, who felt like a “grandfather,” standing behind Julie. He was tall, handsome, young, very entertaining, and had on a suit and an old-time hat. I looked at him and told Julie that I felt I had a grandfather here. With that, grampa held the front corner of his hat, took it off his head, and “tipped” it toward Julie. I told Julie, “He says that he ‘tips’ his hat to you.” I didn’t know what that meant, but I heard it clearly. It was later that Julie told me that her grandfather had died in his 30s in Portugal, was an entertainer, and that “tipping” the hat was a gentlemanly gesture of respect. Wow, I didn’t know about her Portuguese heritage.

Then a little boy appeared next to me. I recall it was on my right side – the “mother’s side” of Julie’s family. He was about 4 or 5 with these little summer shorts on. He kept trying to tell me something about the “pets” and I couldn’t quite get it, but I knew they were small and furry – I wasn’t sure what they were. It was rabbits. He told me that he “took them with him.” I didn’t know what that meant, but told Julie.

She later explained that her little brother had died after being struck by a car. Her parents were so distraught that they couldn’t go back to the house right away. Her brother had two rabbits as pets. When her father went back the next day to get the rabbits….they were dead!! He “took” them with him!

Then, next to her little brother appeared a taller man who indicated that he was “taking care of” her little brother. He appeared tall and strong, and after I described him, Julie said it was her uncle who had died of Multiple Sclerosis – he was now “whole” in the afterlife.

There was a big message about Julie maintaining her religious values and being spiritually vigilant. Behind her the spirits (I assume that’s who arranged this) tacked up onto the wall big crucifixes and crosses and pictures of Mary. I mean, the wall was filled top to bottom with them! As I saw each one go up and up and up, I finally said, “That’s enough already!!” I had to laugh at the way they were trying to get the message through.

And then the strangest thing happened. I was sitting there and suddenly – and I swear this happened – I felt a “spirit hand” literally TURN my OWN hand OVER with my palm up. I couldn’t actually see her, however, I could “feel” that it was a woman who had done this (probably from the touch of her hand). And as I sat there, she gently began stroking the inside of my palm. It was so gentle and soooooo relaxing! I don’t know how I knew it, but I told Julie, “This isn’t for you – this is for your mother.” This woman kept stroking my hand, and I felt so comfortable and calm. I almost didn’t want it to stop.

Finally, the reading was over as we were out of time. I think more could have come through had I had more time. However, it was time to end.

When I later walked by Julie’s closed office door, I could hear her chattering away quite excitedly in (what I later learned to be) Portuguese! About an hour after that, Julie came into my office and said that she had called her mother to tell her about the reading – she said that her mother wanted to know “Who is this person who knows all this?” It ends up that the woman who was stroking my hand was her mother’s oldest aunt, Tia Merquinhas,who had died a year and a half before! And all through their lives, Julie’s great aunt would stroke her mother’s hand to calm and relax her! Talk about confirmation – wow!

Needless to say, even I was amazed. I feel that the reason Julie had such a significant reading was because I do believe that she, also, has mediumistic abilities but doesn’t use them consciously. It was just too easy for me to get the information for her. Plus, she is also the person referred to in my Older Entries about “Grampa tugs on ear during group reading.” You can see that her whole family has this latent ability.

And, “Thank You” to Julie’s grampa, in particular, who was strong enough to not only break through, but to give a verbal message, a cultural reference, and literally came in and “touched by tugging her ear” his grandchild. And thank you also to Julie’s Aunt. What an amazing reading that was for me … and Julie.

As always, I must thank the spirits for allowing me to experience such wonderful validations – and the love and comfort they bring to those remaining here. So, “Thank you!”

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A Child’s Past Life Memory in the Bathtub

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I have a very intense reincarnation experience I want to relate — but not today, as I need to do it on an evening when I have more time. So….today, I will relate about an experience that my daughter had. Actually, this can be useful information for others, and, especially, parents.

Children seem to have more vivid memories of past lives. (Dr. Ian Stevenson has written extensively — with a more scientific bent — about children’s memories of past lives, and I recommend him.)

When my daughter, Celene, was about 3 years old, she was taking a bath, which she normally loved. As I was bathing her, suddenly she screamed out: “Get the boy away, get the boy away!! He’s going to hurt me!!” And she was terrified.

I looked behind me, and throughout our tiny bathroom — nothing — just me and Celene and the bathtub. I suppose it could have been a spirit boy, however, I didn’t feel or see anything, and just the way she reacted made me think that she ‘knew’ what the events were ahead of time. I tried to calm her down and told her that there was no boy there. She just wanted out of the tub, so I took her out, dried her off, and she didn’t speak of it that night.

Again, I was bathing her on another night, when again she screamed out: “Get the boy away, get the boy away — he’s going to hurt me!” By this time, I had had time to think over the previous incident and realized that it may have been a past life memory. Unfortunately, I didn’t think to ask her to describe the boy, but she was just too upset to talk to anyway.

I thought that she may have been drowned, or murdered under water in a past life, and she was reliving it.

At this point of her fear of this “boy,” I started to talk to her: “There is no boy here now. You are safe. You are Celene now, and I am your mother. The boy is no longer here. You are safe.”

I still got her out of the tub.

One more night she again became afraid of “the boy.” “Get the boy away, get the boy away, he’s going to hurt me!” Again, I tried to soothe her: “You are no longer there. The boy is gone. You are here in Buffalo with me. I am your mother now. You are safe. That is over. You are safe. You are Celene now, and you are safe.”

Once more, taking her out of the tub, I kept talking about how the boy could no longer hurt her, who she was now, and how she was safe.

And that was the last I heard of it with her. And she no longer remembers these incidents.

Celene was still young enough to remember, and the water must have brought back these memories. I know of another friend of mine whose son had repetitive dreams of an Indian man on a horse, and the horse and the Indian crashing off a huge, high cliff to their deaths. She also walked him through who he was now, that he was safe, and he didn’t need to be afraid anymore. And he, like my daughter, finally was at peace and no longer had the continual nightmares of the Indian and the horse plunging to their deaths. So, keep reminding the child or person of who they are now, and that they are safe. Safety is a big factor.

Does Celene remember more? Not really, although the monks at the Buddhist monastery that she was drawn to on her own, “recognized” her as having been “one of us.” Plus, Celene, who is now 12, has not eaten beef, or “cow” as she calls it since she was six. And her fascination with Asia — perhaps a Buddhist life in Asia somewhere.

I don’t think that everything we like or person we meet is from a past life. It’s probably a little of both: some people we may have known forever, and new souls to know and learn with.

However, occasionally we are allowed glimpses into what had been. I have only had a few glimpses from the past (I wish I had more — they might be helpful). But one, in particular, with the group of people with whom I worked at the Edgar Cayce Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona, was the most remarkable because so many people had shared the same memory independently at different times and in different cities and states. And that will be next.

Although I think that past lives are certainly a real possibility (you know me, the skeptic), I also believe something else which is more important than whether or not reincarnation exists. And that is that we are still HERE in THIS world, in THIS body, in THIS place and time. So, to dwell on what WAS, can hinder what IS or can be. To use the information wisely is one thing, however, being so attached to the past life may not be helpful. Therefore, just like with any experience in life — the past may help to shape you in certain ways, help you along in the present to understand certain behaviors or feelings, however, we still live in THIS moment in time. And this is where we must currently work on ourselves.

So, the past was the future and the future is now. And our present just skipped by! Yikes, where DOES the time go!

Just remember, be kind to the people you meet — because you may be sharing more than just THIS lifetime together!

Until we meet again…..

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Wo Fat/Khigh Deigh from Hawaii 5-O….The I Ching Seminar

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Greetings everyone. I want to relate my experience with Khigh Deigh, the actor who played Wo Fat on Hawaii Five-O. What made me think about this event in my life was talking to a man who reads Tarot cards. In explaining how he reads, he also emphasized that he is “not a psychic” but, rather, someone who reads symbols and archetypes. That made me think of this event with Khigh Deigh.

Many years ago I used to work at the A.R.E. (Association for Research and Enlightenment — Edgar Cayce) Clinic in Phoenix, Arizona. During my stay at the Clinic, I met many wonderful and amazing people. Khigh Deigh was one of them. He was not only an actor, but a Chinese philosophy scholar (and he owned a Chinese restaurant!).

I took an “I Ching” seminar from Khigh Deigh one night in Phoenix. There were about 100 people gathered in a small auditorium. Khigh Deigh started the seminar by throwing out 5 pieces of Chinese candy into the audience — whoever grabbed the candy would then be called onto the stage with him as he demonstrated how the I Ching works. I was one of the five.

When he called me onto the stage, he told me that he would show me how the I Ching divines answers to questions: he did NOT bring out divining straws, coins or an I Ching book.

What he DID do was ask me to think of a question I wanted an answer to. I thought, and formulated my question. Okay, that was easy. Now I just needed the answer. I had thrown the I Ching before, so this would be simple.

Khigh Deigh extended his arm and hand toward me, reaching out a book to me like a worm on a hook, or a carrot dangling in front of my nose. He held the dark-covered book toward me for me to take. I reached toward the book. He swiftly pulled it away! I was very surprised! Why was he doing this??

He then extended the book again toward me — I reached out, gently touching the book and he, again, quickly pulled the book away! He grinned. I didn’t know what to do. How could I get that book??

Again, Khigh Deigh extended the dark-covered book toward me. I was apprehensive. How could I get it??

Gazing upon the book as it slowly traveled through the air toward me, I suddenly GRABBED IT!! That was it — I grabbed it!! In fact, I grabbed it AWAY from Khigh Deigh!!! I had gotten the book!!! Yayyyyyyyy!!

He then quietly looked at me, and asked me to think of how this experience was my “answer.” I thought. Hmmmm, the book was extended — it was pulled away. I reached, it was pulled. And then I grabbed — grabbed it away — to me! I knew then that the “answer” was to be more assertive, to take what I needed, to not let people take things from me, or to push me around. That was, at that time in my life, an “answer” I desperately needed.

Quite solemnly he then told me that THIS is how the I Ching is divined.

I never threw a coin, I never used a straw or stick, nothing. No I Ching book. Just the symbolic book, the symbolic I Ching “answers.”

Ah ha!! The Big Ah Ha! I got it. The I Ching, like Tarot cards, was a tool. A divining tool. It did NOT truly hold the answers. The answers were all within ME! In YOU!!

You see, we ARE our own best psychics. Often we go to a psychic, hoping to hear what we WANT to hear, when, in reality, we already KNOW the “answer.”

As we go about our daily lives, we can see “answers” in many “divining” tools: the clouds as they form special pictures just for us; shadows falling on the sidewalk making us think of someone we had forgotten for too long; the sound of the ocean waves along the shore reminding us of the music we long to hear. So many answers, so many ways to receive them.

Sometimes I forget it is so simple. Thank you, Khigh Deigh, for your simple kindness, and “the answer.”

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