Forest Bathing for Inspiration

Gravel dust swirls in the warm air, stirring more with each step I take. To my left are rows of flowers, with colors spanning the rainbow, smelling like a perfumery of floral and wood. To my right is a border of trees, protecting a wetland and habitat to rabbits, ducks, frogs, and many varieties of birds. Up ahead the crows call out, beckoning me to move deeper into the forest. Two butterflies dance in the sky, moving from one side of the pathway to the other, reminding me to be spontaneous and playful.

I have been an avid forest bather long before I even knew what it was. Nature’s cathedral of treetops has always been my place of peace, where I can turn off and allow everything else to fall away. The Japanese have coined the term “forest bathing”, and it has recently made a surge into our American lexicon, but for those of us living in the Seattle area, forest bathing has already been a part of life.

Forest bathing is not simply being outside, it is about immersion in the natural beauty that surrounds you. It is a break from devices, signals, and busyness. While there will be some people who tell you how to take a forest bath, it is more about embracing a being-ness that cannot be defined by another person. Forest bathing creates a daily escape from our workweek routine, and forges connection with nature, as well as our innermost thoughts.

When you emerge from your time in nature, you come out with renewed priorities, perspectives and focus on what really matters, instead of what you think should matter. You can walk, jog, sit, meditate, practice tai chi, do yoga, read, color, take photos, sing, laugh, or simply be. The more you allow each moment in the forest to lead and guide you, the better experience you will have.

I enjoy using this time for walking meditation, contemplation, connecting with the animals I encounter, tai chi on occasion, and taking photos. Each day is a different experience, even if I go back to the exact same place. The forest is my place for inspiration to jolt me to my next adventure.

Whether, I am sun gazing though the canopy, or pondering on the ripples in a pond, the forest reminds me of what is important for me in my life today. It is my therapist, my guide, and my theater, showing me all that I need to see.

Be A Guest Blogger

We welcome you to share your personal experiences, thoughts, spiritual wisdom and guidance here on Your Soul Mission. Here are a few simple guidelines of what we are looking for.

The topics we are looking for are: self-empowerment, life purpose/soul mission seeking, spiritual development, compassion for others, humanitarian gifts, ascension, personal life learning and experiences, abundance practices, past life healing/awareness, and anything else you think will be a good fit for our blog. Please no sales pitches.

Please keep it uplifting! It is totally fine (and welcome even) to share a post that begins with a challenging experience, as long as you write about how you overcame it, or what you learned from it.

We will not accept posts that directly bad-mouth a specific person, people or group. If you want to share an experience of how you did not resonate with someone, that is just fine, but please do not name them or include any identifying information. There can be many times when this is a valuable piece of past life learning, just be sure to keep the other names involved out of it.

We will not accept blogs written to incite anger, competition, pride, guilt, shame, comparison, etc. You are welcome to share your “a-ha moments” about these emotions and many more, but please refrain from writing in such a way to showcase superiority/inferiority or any similar dynamic. Don’t worry, as long as you have awareness of this, there is a very slim chance you will end up writing this way. Do understand that you cannot control how others will perceive of your work, simply do your best to write in a manner authentic to you with the above guidelines in mind.

Be a Guest Blogger on YourSoulMission.com

We will not accept blogs that are solely written to sell a product/service. It is absolutely acceptable to mention a product or service in a blog if it makes sense for the post.

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When you are all ready to send us your submission, please email Karen with the subject line Guest Blog. You can include the text in the body of your email, or as an attached .doc or .docx. For video posts, please include the YouTube link. Remember to include any links you would like to share, and a short bio. Karen’s email address is karen (at) yoursoulmission (dot) com

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Your Soul Mission reserves the right: to choose which submissions are posted, to correct your spelling/grammar, and to add a short note to the end of your post. The note may include additional information about you or your content that would help the reader. Any additional note would be marked stating it was added by Karen. See this post for an example of such a note. Additionally, every guest blog will have a comment at the end stating it is a guest blog, and to encourage other readers to submit their experiences as well.

Thank you for sharing your insights about your Soul Mission!

Question Everything

One of the questions I am often asked is, “Do you ever question how you get your information?” My answer. Yes. In fact, I feel that taking regular time to question the process of your intuition keeps you in check, out of the Ego, and even more importantly, away from the influence of malevolent beings.

This is not a question of protection. If you wish to be protected, and ask for protection, you are protected. But, what if you have been unknowingly asking for protection from beings who have not been honest with you? How do you learn to discern the difference between your Higher Self and the Ego? Between malevolent beings, here to disempower, and benevolent beings, here to assist?

There are two key points to accomplish this, balance and discernment. Both are simple to remember, but can be challenging to practice. These are tools available to everyone, and with a little practice, you can master them quite easily.

Opening up your energy to intuitive communication of any kind, is like opening the front door of your home. And, just like before you open your front door, you want to have a few checks and balances in place before you open up your energy for intuitive communication.

First, you want to know who is at the door. When you are opening the door for a new energy to work with for the first time, you want to know who they are. Start by asking for their name. Then you want to ask where they are from, and why they are coming to greet you. Sometimes it will be a longtime Spirit guide who is introducing themselves, or a loved one who has passed, or sometimes no one you have ever heard of. Some of the most selfless and helpful beings have names we have never heard of, so do not be put off by an unfamiliar name.

Also, there is a rule that governs the name that an energetic being can present themselves as. It must be a name that they have been referred to before, but not necessarily their name on the other side. For example, you have a given name for this life on the Earth plane. When you leave this life and go to the Other Side, you will also remember you Soul Name. You will respond to your Soul name, and also to any of the names from any of your incarnations. Your living relatives on the Earth will not know your Soul Name to call you by. However, this naming rule can also be confusing when you are meeting with a new energy for the first time. If you hear the name “Michael” do not assume it is Archangel Michael without asking a few more questions first.

To add to the difficulty with going off of name alone, there have been beings who have been going by copycat names. So the “Michael” you connect with has the potential to be a copycat “Michael.” This is why asking the questions about where they are from, and why they are connecting with you are incredibly necessary to determine their true origins and intentions. However, once you have gotten to know an energy who is working with you, there are many different cues you can pick up on. They have signature color they present to you, some can have a signature smell, and all of them have a certain feeling to their energetic presence.

This feeling is your best discernment tool; as just like your loved ones, you can easily learn the feel of a person’s/being’s energy signature. This isn’t something that can be duplicated. But, you cannot lead with this feeling, you need to know who is there first, build up a relationship with them, and then only at that time, can you rely on the feeling of their energy signature.

Even at that, you do want to maintain a balance in trusting what you feel, and knowing that if something feels “off” to you, it is time to question the connection once again. There should never be a time in your life where you can rely on blind faith in the course of your intuitive communication. If you do, that is a vulnerability that can be exploited by those with ill intent. Even the energy you know as God can be questioned about Its Name, Source and Intention. Without going through even just one round of questioning, you will never know if you have unknowingly been communicating with a copycat God energy. If you do not ever question your communication process, you are like an open energy line that can be tapped without your permission. The best way to grow confidence in your connection with any energy being is to first grow you connection with your own Higher Self.

This connection to the Higher Self is a part of every individual. Through your Higher Self is your pathway of connection to other energetic beings. Imagine your column of light extending from below your feet to far above your head. That column connects Mother Gaia (Earth) to Source energy. You, and everyone else, is a bridge for this light connection. Each one of us, through our will, discernment and attention, can keep this bridge wide, flowing and secure. If we ignore it, or give its management away to some else, it will become narrow, rickety and difficult to cross. If we keep our bridge difficult to cross, this creates a vulnerability for other energies to utilize our bridge without us knowing. When you are in a trusting connection with your Higher Self, your light bridge automatically is wide, secure and flowing with energy and communication.

So, then how do you create a trusting connection with your Higher Self? This first comes from recognizing the qualities the Higher Self possesses, and what qualities the Ego possesses. The Ego is attached to the matrix grid of greed, anger, separation, fear, corruption, and so forth. The Higher Self is free from all of these types of emotions, and is in Oneness and peace with all things. The more you neutralize the Ego, the more you connect with your Higher Self. The more you connect with the Higher Self, the more you neutralize the Ego.

To fully neutralize the Ego, you must identify within you, ALL pieces of fear, sadness, doubt, anger, greed, pride, corruption, hubris, lack, etc. It may sound like a tremendous feat, but really once you have gone beyond the 50% threshold of dealing with these Egoic traits, then you are more in the Higher Self part of you. At that point, the Higher Self is able to really work their magic, and remove from within you much more of your potential susceptibilities. Of course, the more attention you pay to this process, the more of these susceptibilities are brought into the light much sooner. Everyone will make it to the same destination, but the amount of time it takes to get there, depends solely on how much you are actively participating along with your Higher Self.

One of the disservices done by some who teach the Law of Attraction, is that they often tell you to force yourself to move beyond your negative emotions. Unfortunately, this does nothing more than stuff them down inside of you. Instead, when you feel a need to cry, cry. When you feel a need to vent, vent. When you feel a need to express your anger, do so. There are helpful and appropriate ways to release your emotions. And, the great part is that once you have released them, they will not come back to bite you in the you-know-what!

It is only when these Egoic emotions and traits are kept buried inside that they can create all sorts of problems, not only with your spiritual communication process, but also affecting you on a physical level. To facilitate the release of these emotions and Egoic traits, all you need to do is identify what you are feeling, and then find a healthy avenue for getting it out of you. Here are some recommendations.

To connect more with your Higher Self, you can engage in any activity that provides fulfillment for you. When you cultivate peace, joy, happiness, contentment, acceptance, unity, abundance, and fulfillment, you are in the Higher Self. The more you are able to hold these positive states of frequency within you (while also releasing the Egoic side), then you will have achieving the balance that is needed to use your tools of discernment.

Balance is needed for discernment. Discernment is needed for you to maintain sovereignty of your own energy. Question everything, but also trust. Build up your inner peace, but also release the anger. Stay out of judgment of where another person or energy is on their path of learning. Instead, focus on whether their intentions are harmonious with your own. If they are not, simply ask them to move along. Do not be mad at them, or in fear. They can use that energy to infiltrate your bridge of light. Instead, focus on building up your own bridge of light, maintaining it, understanding it. Then you can truly be sure you are connecting on your own terms.