This is a 2 part taped interview I had in early 2014 with a doctoral student in psychology about my ARISE method of soul-based counseling including Reiki or energy work in a counseling session. The transcript has been edited for better reading. Hope you like it!
PART 2: Culture, religion, and working in the quantum to access higher wisdom
Hmm. Have you had times where you noticed certain clients of yours from a different cultural background respond differently?
I love ethnic background work. That was the focus of my doctoral research: ethnic identity, self-esteem, and perception of discrimination. If you feel like you are being discriminated against because of your ethnicity, does it help your self-esteem or does it hurt your self-esteem? So it was an interesting research project but it took me almost ten years to get it approved and defended because the topic was seen as too controversial for the institution at the time. They were concerned that there would be stereotyping and discrimination in my research, but I wasn’t attempting to stereotype or discriminate, I was attempting to look at the everyday reality of marginalized populations.
How have you been able to maneuver with the more religious or spiritually based clients?What is your religious or spiritual background?
It’s such an interesting question because I was raised Catholic. And so my inner world was populated from a very early age. I was a very spiritual little girl. I went to catholic school from elementary, high school and college and lived easily within Jesus, Mary, Angels paradigm. After college, I stopped being a Catholic and my family was so upset. They said, “What happened to you? We struggled to put you through this training!”
I said I’d learned too much about church history because 300 years after Jesus transitioned, groups of men, Constantine, and the Roman empire decided what to include and exclude from Jesus’s teachings, and how to move this organized state religion forward, for their own purposes.
Also, I was a young woman in the 60s and early 70s and I was incensed that the Catholic church was (and still is) against birth control. It is so disempowering for women, to not have access to your sexuality and being safe. What this practice does around the world to women in poverty - it’s unbelievable and unconscionable to me that still today in 2014, the Catholic church is still saying not to use birth control.
So church history, birth control, and learning about the similarities of comparative religions, I stepped out of that arena completely. Then I went through a very interesting phase for many decades of working through a meditative and internal world view. And then along came Reiki and energy work.
My Reiki Master was a very devout Jewish woman who said she once had a Reiki healing session on a nun.
“And who did Sister Regina bring with her?” asked Ellen in our Reiki class.
“Mary! And Mary was a good Jewish mother, so she’s always welcome in my home. And her son was a hands-on healer so he is welcome too.”
I really didn’t know how to respond to that slightly joking statement but she encouraged us to call upon Jesus and Mary in our Reiki work, if we felt drawn to. I thought how unusual to cycle back to my religious origins after two decades, through this Jewish Reiki Master and a Japanese/ Buddhist inspired energy healing system. At first I resisted, but I’ve had many interesting encounters myself with my clients and who they ‘bring’ with them.
If your world view could be populated at all by Ascended Beings and Masters, then you will like Reiki. So, if you are interested in working with Jesus, with Mary, with Angels - if you’re interested in Buddha, Quan Yin, the Goddess of compassion, Michael, Gabriel, Raphael, Ariel - there are many Archangels, many Ascended Masters who align with Reiki. If that is your world view, then you can learn to dialogue with these energies.
If not, then you might access higher information from a part of yourself or you might not even know where understanding comes from. Wisdom of the universe, higher mental understandings, but if you’re interested in working with actual enlightened beings, you can learn.
How fascinating that was for me to come decades later full circle. I’m not a religious person. To me, religion is like a menu. I’d rather just go for the food, and so for me the food has substance and fills me up.
Hmmmm. Interesting. How does that work with clients?
I have been able to access information at times when there was no way I could have gotten that personal, private information. As a psychologist, I keep thinking, how could I access this information? There’s no way I could get information such as a poem and then find out that their son who transitioned always wrote his mom poems, or a specific flower and that person who transitioned always brought them that flower. How would I be able to access such specific information of a loved one who has transitioned? So, again, I go back to ‘energy cannot be created or destroyed’, and working within that framework, allow myself to step up to that higher vibrational state, bring down information for that person.
It’s fascinating. They’re doing research if you’re interested, I think it’s the University of Arizona. A few years ago, I was on a teleconference call about a quintuple blind study on ‘mediumship’. The gist of the research was that if we could know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that people still live on, in some capacity, after they have transitioned, that would change everything on earth. It would be a game changer. I had to really think about that – but it is true that so much grief, remorse, what if’s would stop. And a sense of eternal time would permeate through us. Countries in Europe are doing more of this research. America, not so much. We are behind on natural types of healing, because our institutions, our research lie within particular mind set…
...and our specific, material world view. So funding is not going into ways which does not bring somebody incredible wealth. That’s just the reality here. But Europe, Russia, South America, there’s many others who are looking at how to work within this new paradigm of reality. It’s kind of fascinating when you get to read their research into natural – and maybe what seems super-natural - findings .
That is so interesting that we just are so behind on that research here.
America is. Even for my ethnic research - I don’t know how people find me, but they do (laughter) - I will get ethnic researchers from South America, from Africa. People writing to thank me for pioneering this type of research. And for me, it’s just always been such a joy because I feel each group brings a tone, sound, instrument to this orchestra of life. And to be able to hear the song!
Of course as you go back far enough, geneticists are saying, in our deep history of hundred thousand years, every homo sapian today migrated from central Africa, moving out through different routes. I don’t know if you’ve seen the research?
No I haven’t.
Spencer Wells is the geneticist and is funded now through National Geographic. It’s fascinating! I teach this information to all my classes, especially career counseling classes, because I feel that you need to be strength-based to find your path...
Who are you, what you are basing your identity upon… so many of us in our family systems, we’re basing it upon a sense of shame or humbleness or ignorance of who we are. With this human genome project of Spencer Wells, you can swab your cheeks and they will find your deep deep deep deep history. The route that your ancestors took. For example, one group who went up throught the central Eurasian plain, turned west to what is now Europe and some mated with the Neanderthals, who were already living in the ice age conditions. Another group went the same route and turned east and walked through Siberia and then Alaska, through a land bridge. They marathoned it all the way down from North, Central and finally to the end of South America in about 1,500 years. Then the land bridge closed and they were isolated for 15 thousand years.
Within those generations and generations of living, through all the history and geography, our ancestors had amazing survival strengths and skills that are passed down to us. They adapted to unbelieveable conditions and so can we. How do you honor that identity and go back up through your DNA and grab your survival strengths and skills because they will help you survive today?
Because we are the children of survivors. The genetic researchers said that at one point in human history, there was a bottleneck and human beings were down to about 2,000 survivors, that we were an endangered species. And from that group of 2,000 survivors, we now are 7 billion. We are the survivors of survivors. We can adapt to our conditions, personal and global.
What are our personal survival strengths?
That’s why I feel it’s important and exciting to work within our DNA lineage. And to work within our soul lineage. There’s many different ways of looking at lineage, finding your strengths, clearing away a lot of the debris, healing whatever you can up through your DNA line, and then setting your path forward. And soul lineage is a whole another aspect entirely.
Right, that just sounds like complete total mind body spirit.
Yeah it’s magnificent do to this work. After every client, I say, thank for allowing me to do this work! I feel very honored.
But being ‘evidence based’ is part of our ethical code.How do you feel about that?
I know, but and then how do you really judge if counseling actually works?
How does the client give you feedback? How do you see what’s going on in their life versus the billing, the coding, and the codification of sacred healing work? How strong is that within our ethics?
How can you tell when it works for your clients? Do they tell you?
Yeah most times I do get feedback from my clients. Clients email or call or come back to see me for a follow up, because I really allow the total process to be up to them and their control, they own their own journey. I don’t own it for them in any way.
I feel I am saying to a client: “I’m here as a partner with you. I’m here to help you get out of where you are. If it’s a stuck place, I’m here to help you move forward in your life. I’m directive, and I’m part of the process, at least as a sacred witness.” Because many of the steps a client takes, I have already taken. Yes, we all have our unique journeys, and yes, we need to integrate and mourn many loses, but I don’t think enough people know there is another shore! You can leave that ocean of mourning, and then there’s a whole other continent. Move and explore the other continent. You don’t need to continue to drown and drown and drown.
So it’s an intricate balance between client-directed because they do direct...They do give you their subjective world of reality...
...But yet you’re there as a partner.
I’m there for that moment with them as a partner and sometimes a guide, because within the inner landscape, I have often travelled a similar path a client is facing.
For example, I love to see through the filter of ‘Hero’s Journey’ and work with guided visualizations. In class, one counselor came to me after a visualization and said, “I am very disturbed by this visualization. I went home and I cried and I cried.
When I asked her to please tell me why, she said, “When I saw myself in the visualization, I was at the edge of a cliff, and there was no way forward. Behind me was this huge mountain and I couldn’t go back, and I couldn’t go forward. And now I’m just scared.”
Her personal story was she left a heartache situation in the Appalachians to come here to Portland to go to school, but she does not have the support or the resources or the ability yet to move forward. And, of course, she doesn’t want to go back home without graduating. At least that would be my take on her situation.
What I did say to her was, “Congratulations, my dear! You are at a known place in the Hero’s Journey. Being at the edge of this chasm is a definitely a known place to me. I have been there and many clients I know have been there. And, the good news - there is a way across!” It’s a very unique and individual way to get across. Sometimes the other side is closer than you think. Other times it’s shrouded, you can’t see anything of your future steps. But at this point in your life, it’s really one step at a time that manifests the way for you. Put your step out and somehow something is going to happen. A step will materialize, a bridge, an eagle will come, you’ll get a jetpack, something is going to come. You will get across if you do this work.
And, as you do this work in the quantum, in guided visualization, then 3D (so-called ‘real’ world) orients from that a lot quicker, rather than slugging your way through 3D, hoping to move your life forward, someway, anyway. We just have the foreground background to change up, we have the opposite perspective of how to move forward.
Sometimes it’s a lot easier to work within the visualization, and to allow it to unfold. But you can’t mentally say, “okay how can I get across?” and then try to figure out solutions. That won’t work! You have to sit with the scene and allow it to bubble up from within your highest and greatest mindset, allowing a way across to manifest. And, I’m there sometimes as a guide or just sometimes as a witness or a cheerleader.
And sometimes I’m saying, “Yes, this is okay. Don’t be afraid of this. Let’s just sit with this process. Let’s get on the table, do some energy work, get some information, and then you go home and work it. And let me know how it’s shifting and changing. Then we can keep working that imagery until you get where you need to be, and you feel safe, and you know where you are, and you go across.”
So it’s an interactive process, it’s not just a passive process, but I don’t direct it, I just honor the process. I guess I honor it for them and with them...I hope to make it a little more real. We are much more than we think we are. The healing is there and ready for us if you want it but how to get to it and how to understand it...
It takes an artistry, it takes prayerfulness, a sacredness, and it takes a degree of training to get to this point to do it.
How do you...when a client leaves, how do you take care of yourself, how do you get back to your space?
I tell especially young therapists like yourself, and teachers, and nurses – there are a number of people - you need a list of at least 20-30 ways to take care of yourself. You need to ground and root yourself, center and align, and then find ways to inspire and soar.
I need to work this myself. I might use music, walking my dog, singing, chanting while I walk. I use physical - shopping, cleaning, cooking dinner for my family, doing dishes, that will help. I do journaling, reading mysteries, and quantum science books. I do color mandala work, I have a fun Monet and Renoir coloring book. Anything with the senses and with nature helps. Sometimes showers help, sometimes crying helps. Sometimes I have to cry and grieve or rage for a client because the stories really will tear your heart out. Then I do energy work for them and I do it for myself, and so I can step up and out.
I don’t work from the perspective of traditional counseling boundaries and of being an observer. My boundaries are set in place through a sense of allowing and honoring each person. I also say prayers sometimes. One of my most used prayers is when I hear a client’s story and I’m not sure, where to go with it yet. It hasn’t manifested yet where we can go, how we can move forward.
I say to myself, “I recognize you as an infinite and powerful being of love and light, who has chosen on a soul level this particular life path, and I honor your free will and life choices.”
And that helps me to put it in a higher perspective, where I can then get information for them on how to proceed and heal. I’m not lost in their story. I’m in the story, I hear it, but I can’t be lost in their story. I have to hold a higher perspective and that helps me and then I do Reiki. I do Reiki on myself. I would never do Reiki on another person without their approval because I don’t want to minimize or change their experience. I want their experience to come in it’s fullness but that being said, the waves cannot go into me and crush me, because then how is that helping either of us? So again, we come full circle back to Reiki, to me a platform energy. It is the beginning of energy work that I train people in, but although the first, it’s still very pristine, easy to access, powerful and pristine.
It’s like the basic...the foundation like you said.
It could be an easy foundation because millions of people in so many countries are using it. Some of the (Reiki) symbols are so easy to use. I can use the symbol for mental and emotional healing and balance, and have access to more wisdom and power for a particular situation. Reiki is an ancient system that so many around the world are using now, and it’s so easy to train and access. It can’t be used for any harm, and I always teach strong ethics that have to be put in place. We have no right to set healings for people who don’t want it. That’s not our business or our job. Just because I am a healer doesn’t mean I’m just going around and heal people whether they want it or not. And no psychic snooping! So you have to have strong, strong ethics and professionalism around energy work because you could access information that you have no right to access
So I really always set the intent not to know anything about a person if it’s not their highest and greatest good and that they don’t want me to know.
And you advertise your work that way your patients know what to expect when they’re coming in.
Yes, they know, it’s on my website. I write articles and newsletters and am writing a series of books of Tools for Lightworkers and a book about my model of spiritual counseling. And then I tell clients during the first session, this is how I work. I ask them what their ‘cosmology’ is, how comfortable they are with my view of higher perspective. I explain to them I can do traditional counseling, even career counseling and resume help, but if you broaden it and open it a little bit, we could look more at your destiny path, bringing in threads from a different way, envisioning in a different way, it might just give you a larger or greater perspective, but that’s up to you.
For me, my sweet spot is to broaden it for you and enlarge it for you. Make it more rich, make it more full. If that’s not what you want, then it’s not the greatest match.
Mhmm, it’s about being true to yourself.
Yeah because why would I waste their time and money to try my model? I’m not here to persuade anybody to any worldview of any kind, my own included.
I refer people if I feel, in my integrity, I’m not the best person for them. It’s not going to be the best experience, and they’re going to be frustrated and I’m going to be frustrated. Because I will want to help you move forward, and you don’t want that help, then why are we together? But, because of the care of how I communicate, it very rarely happens.
Hmm and now you’re here.
Now I’m here.