Who hasn't thought of reaching for the nearest 1900-dial-a-psychic line when life gets too confusing? Yasmin Boland shows you how to predict your own future.
"I use my Higher Self for advice for clothes shopping, for haircuts, to make sure I get everything I need at the supermarket ..."
- Kerrie Higgins, Sydney psychic skills teacher
It might not always feel like it, but many of the great esoteric minds of our time (Chopra, Walsch et al), insist we all have the ability to get in touch with our own inner wisdom, with our Higher Selves, with the bits of us which transcend mere mortality.
So next time life seems pear-shaped and you're not sure whether to reach for the 1900-dial-a-psychic line or the Chardonnay, stop right there … Instead of allowing decisions about your future to rest on your best friend's advice, the random turn of a Rune or on the utterings of some (possibly deranged) psychic, go within to speak to the person who cares most about you … yourself …
All the answers to all the questions you have are said to be lurking inside your soul, and just waiting to be unleashed ...
Accessing your inner knowledge is a bit like listening to the radio. First you have to turn on, then you have to tune in …
METHOD 1: TALK TO GOD/DESS
A few years ago, US DJ Neale Donald Walsch was feeling very peeved. His love life was in the toilet, his professional life sucked and he felt emotionally barren. So Neale sat down to write a letter of fuming complaint to the highest authority he could think of; God. Imagine his surprise when God actually replied.
"In this letter, I asked God a series of very angry questions; 'What does it take to make life work? What have I done to deserve a life of such continuing struggle?' and 'What are the rules here? I'll play, just give me the rule book'. I wrote those questions as a sort of amateur self-help therapy at 4.20 one morning. After I had finished writing, I heard a voice very clearly over my right shoulder which said 'do you really want answers to those questions or are you just venting?'"
The result of this 'uncommon dialogue' - a series of questions to and answers from 'God' - became NDW's best selling book Conversations With God, a tome well worth reading.
As part of the research for this article, I called NDW up myself. Surely, if he had the Ear Of The Almighty, he must be able to predict his own future - not to mention everyone else's. I asked him, for an example, that if someone split up with their boyfriend, could they ask God if their boyfriend was coming back? NDW was underwhelmed with my question, to say the least.
"I do not use God to predict the future," he fairly blustered at me. "I use it for God to place in my hands the tools with which I can create my own future. I don't ask frivolous questions about my future, like 'Will my lover come back?'. I ask deeper questions like 'How can I become successful?' 'What is the meaning of relationship?' 'What is the purpose of life?' I never get into carnival side show questions."
But surely we can ask God anything? I persisted, meekly.
"Yes, you can, but if you ask 'will my lover return' God will probably say 'I don't know' … God would never say 'Yes, he is coming back', or 'No he's not' because that answer presumes that the future has already been decided … God would cause you to know that the future has not been decided and that you can create the future that you want. 'Will my lover come back?' is not a modern woman's question, it's a 1936 question. It's the deeper questions which take us into the future by allowing us to create our future."
EXERCISE: Perhaps NDW has a point. So if you want to know about your ex, ask not 'will he come back?' but 'what do I need for a fulfilling relationship?'. By the same token, if you're curious about if/when you will meet someone new, ask ye not 'Will I meet someone?' but 'What would it take for me to form a great relationship?'. If you are with someone you love, don't ask 'Will we stay together?' but 'What would it take for us to stay together?' I've used love life examples here, but you can apply these NWD-esque questions to God to any aspect of your life.
Adds NDW: "A question deeply asked in the purity of one's heart will be answered, whatever process you use - a pen and paper is good or you can just pose the question in your mind while walking in the park … Afterwards, notice and watch and listen because the Universe will provide the answer in the most extraordinary ways - for example, you could be led to read the most extraordinarily right article - like the one you're reading now ..." Schpooky.
And don't be afraid to write a Dear God letter. It worked for NDW. He's now a happily married, multi-millionaire best-selling author.
METHOD 2: TALK TO AN ANGEL
This is a nice, (fairly) normal website, not one of those www.spook-city.com zones. So it's with some trepidation that I hereby suggest that - next time life gets tough - you also try talking to your spirit guides and angels for help. Yes, as in your Guardian Angels. (Just by the by, I once read on the Internet about a man who thought he'd 'channelled information' from a rather large tomato plant … so if you think suggesting you talk to your guides and angels is weird, you ain't read nothin' yet, baby).
How to talk to an Angel:
Allow yourself at least 15 minutes. Go to a quiet room. Turn off your mobile and shut the door. Sit quietly with a pen and paper in your lap, either on the floor or at a table. Centre your thoughts and focus your mind on your question. Put pen to paper with the words:
"Dear Guides and Angels, what do I need to know about situation x?"
"Dear Guides and Angels, what do I need to know to make blah blah happen/to avoid blah blah?"
It's important to phrase your questions in such a way that you will get a comprehensive answer. Ask long range questions. Keep the answers a secret. It's said that even though no one knows if our futures are destined or subject to free will, we can at least 'tune in' to next week, which is far enough into the future to give you a fair idea about which direction you should set your life's rudder.
This might sound like the biggest load of codswallop you have ever heard and I won't deny that I know people who've tried this method with absolutely no results at all, but I also know of others who swear by it as a way of tapping into the best advice and reassurance that they've ever received.
METHODS 3(i), 3(ii), 3(iii) and 3(iv): TALK TO YOURSELF
No, not 'start walking around mumbling to yourself under your breath'. Take a leaf out of the various esoteric leaders' books and just have a word with yourself.
(i) USE YOUR BREATH
When healer Brandon Bays (see www.brandonbays.com) needs to make a decision, she listens to her breath. Ten years ago, Brandon was diagnosed with an enormous tumour in her stomach. Using diet, meditation and the processes she has come to call The Journey, she managed to defy medical opinion and clear herself of the cancer without surgery. She has since dedicated her life to helping others achieve their aims.
"I believe that the body is a barometer of the soul, so if I want to know something about my future, this is what I do:
"I sit down and breathe into my heart or gut and mentally ask the question - should I do A? I breathe into my heart or gut and if it feels good, I come back to neutral. Maybe I should do action A. Then I ask myself - should I do B? If I get a catch in my breath, or if it feels tense or I feel a twinge, I do not take action B. Not here, not this moment, maybe never. But I will think about action A more deeply. If you get a catch with your breath asking both questions, ask 'is there a third way?' Infinite intelligence knows …signals to you by giving you signals through your body."
(ii) GET IN SYNCH
If Brandon's breathing technique not for you, try the Deepak Chopra approach and ask the Universe for some answers, using Synchro Destiny. Synchro-destiny is when things "fall into place"; when events seem "fated"; when you feel as though the Universe is "trying to tell you something" and you "go with the flow".
"I believe our destiny is influenced by synchronistic events," says Chopra. "Most people just brush unlikely events, saying 'oh, that's just coincidence' but I don't think so. I think every coincidence is meaningful."
Eg: You're not happy in your job. For the first time in months you check out the newspaper employment section. Your dream job is advertised.
Says Deepak: "Anytime an improbable event occurs - and that's anything which is outside the realm of statistical probability - that's a clue or omen. After any improbable encounter, meeting, relationship, situation, circumstance (such as seeing the job of your dreams advertised or bumping into a long lost friend the day after you think of them), ask yourself 'Why did that happen and what is the deeper meaning?' And as well as looking for signs about where you should go, watch for omens that you are on the right track."
(iii) ASK THE FIRE
This is a white witchy spell has its origins in the Middle Ages. If you want to know where your life is heading and you have a log fire handy, give it a go. It's from Sheryn George's wonderful new book Love Story (Harper Collins) and is so spooky it might just work!
Say three times:
Fire red and burning well
Into your depths I cast this spell
Knowing that where I now dwell
My future soon to me you'll tell
Then poke the fire once, twice, three times. Notice the sparks which fly up the chimney after you finish poking and your incantation. Fast plentiful spits and sizzles mean a hectic start to the new spring, with heaps to do and barely enough time to do it in. Several loud pops mean shocks to your current way of life, so be prepared for change. If one of the pops is very loud, be prepared for a new and very powerful love interest in the spring. Slow burning hisses mean you'll have time on your own to contemplate what's been happening in your life, and where you want to go. Keep warm, and put out the fire safely. This spell is extra good as no one thinks you're doing it - it can all be done in your head...
(iv) ASK YOUR HIGHER SELF
And if you think the Universe, your good Self and the fire aren't vaunted enough authorities to rely on, try talking to your Higher Self when you need answers.
Spiritual teacher Kerrie Higgins works with the Holistic Healing Company in Sydney and says that she regularly 'goes within' for information. (In fact, during the course of our conversation, she pauses and asks me to "hang on a minute while I tune into the other side for an answer to that one …" more than once.) What she's actually tuning into is her Higher Self - the part of us which is allegedly attuned to the great, mysterious Universal source from which all information cometh.
Kerrie teaches her students to listen to their Higher Self/intuition using meditation.
"Information comes through as words or pictures, or as a 'knowing' … the more you listen to it, the more powerful it becomes … but you can ask for whatever you like. I use my Higher Self for advice for clothes shopping, for haircuts, to make sure I get everything I need at the supermarket. Sometimes I might even buy stuff and I think 'why did I buy that?' then I need it later in the week.
"My Higher Self recently gave me two warnings on financial problems, and proved entirely right. I was in class at the time that the message came through. My students were doing a psychometry exercise and I got a message saying 'there will be two financial shocks coming up, but I don't want you to worry because both will be resolved'.
"The first happened when my ex-partner walked in the door a few days later and told me he didn't want to pay his half of the mortgage any more, because he was going overseas, in three weeks. The other was that the tax department rang and said they couldn't find two of three dossiers I'd sent them, which was very worrying.
"But as predicted, both issues were resolved - the tax department found my dossiers after 6 weeks looking and I came up with a refinancing solution to my mortgage dilemma."
Find a quiet space and sit down. If you've already learned how to meditate, begin your practice as usual. When you have finished, stay still and silent for a moment. Ask a question of your Higher Self, either out loud or in your head or on paper. You can phrase it: "I ask my Higher Self - what do I need to know about situation x?". Wait for the answer, which will almost certainly come. Test the answer against your instincts. Does it feel right? If you haven't yet learned to meditate, simply sit quietly, breathing gently, with your eyes closed for 15 minutes and then ask your Higher Self the question, as described above.
A slightly less schp-ooooky version of this article appeared in New Woman Australia and UK.