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Signs of Spirit
Signs of Spirit
In 2005, we became aware that even though spirit is invisible to the eye, it’s characteristics can be observed in ourselves and others.
Signs of Spirit are evidence of the existence of the unseen spirit. They are characteristics that can be observed in ourselves and others. Once known and recognized as coming from spirit, we can choose to activate and cultivate them in ourselves, thus living as spirits in daily life.
We call these characteristics “signs of spirit” because they demonstrate the presence of spirit, just as a heartbeat and breathing our “signs of life” for the body.
We have been writing first-person short stories about our experiences observiing signs of spirit in ourselves and others and also about how we intentionally use these spirit abiities in our daily lives.
Our intent in sharing these stories is to make it more kown in the world that spirit exists and exists in each and every human being in addition to all of Life. Perhaps our stories will inspire you to find these signs of spirit in yourself and others.
by Debra Redalia
i’m sharing this story in detail because I want to show the process I go through of releasing things in my mind that can block my expression of spirit. Also, this subject of feeling “confined” seems to possibly be widespread at the moment.
About six months ago I was reading a book about communication which instructed me to communicate with the other person how I felt about the situation. Hmmm. I actually stopped reading the book right there because to communicate a feeling presupposes that you have the ability to be aware of your feeling, identify it as a specific feeling and then communicate one’s feeling to another person.
I’ve had attention on this since and did some research about emotions, but still was having difficulty with this. It seemed to me that there should be list of general emotions with related sub-emotions and I should be able to understand each emotion, be able to recognize it in myself, be able to produce that emotion when I wanted to, and recognize it in other people when they were displaying it.
But none of that gave me more understanding of emotions or improved my ability to recognize or control my own.
Finally I decided to talk with someone I know about this who understands emotions professionally.
His first question was to just tell him a time when I experienced an emotion. Sounds pretty simple, but I actually had to look for an expression of emotion that was big enough to be significant.
What came up for me was a time when my mother was dying of cancer. She had had surgery but the cancer recurred and she was in and out of the hospital for three years. For that period of time, my life was completely disrupted, I was losing my mother, and everything was uncertain—a lot like things are now with covid-19. In addition, instead of moving forward with my own life, it was necessary for me to step in and keep her business going and do all the housework and take care of my father.
One evening I just walked into her hospital room and screamed—I know this is going to sound horrible—I screamed, “Why don’t you just die!” It came out, as emotions often do, without any forewarning, so I wasn’t able to stop it. I don’t remember anything else about this, just those emotional words flying out of my mouth.
Then he asked, “What was the emotion?”
I had to look at that for a minute.
“Confined,” I said. “I felt confined.” [And here is exactly where I get stuck about identifying emotions. I thought I was experiencing being confined—which I was—but confined is not an emotion, it’s a physical state.]
But at that moment, “Confined” was the correct answer because it opened the door for me to see what I needed to see.
And there was an emotion there, I just couldn’t recognize it yet.
Seeing this kind of cracked open this incident so I wasn’t so stuck about it, but there was more.
After we finished our conversation I went home and fell asleep. When I awoke it was two minutes before a phone call appointment. When I rushed to my computer, I found out my client had left me a text rescheduling. I was uncomfortable and grouchy all afternoon.
Larry and I went for a walk, and talked at length about the definition of the word “confine” while we went to visit the llamas and sheep and goats down the street. I had looked up the definition of confine so I knew it meant "to keep within limits of space, scope, quantity, or time.” As I started to come up with examples of confine, I saw that to be confined is simply to keep something within limits. It’s a physical state. Milk is confined to it’s bottle, work is confined to a scope of work, possessions are confined to one’s home, marital activities are confined to one’s spouse. Confinement can be both a negative and a positive thing, depending on how it’s used and how an individual experiences it. I had “confinement” associated with a very difficult time in my life that also had a lot of emotion attached.
Later in the evening I remembered something else I had said to my friend earlier. We were just talking about my mother in general and I said, “I always felt like I could never measure up to my mother. Her face was so beautiful and mine wasn’t. She had such a beautiful voice and my voice wasn’t beautiful like hers.” There was obviously a time when I was a child or in my teens when I looked at my mother and looked at myself and decided I could never be like her. i was inferior. And because these were physical attributes I was comparing, these were things I could never change. [As I’m writing this, I remembered all of aa sudden that my mother’s natural body wasn’t all that beautiful. It was her dramatic hairpiece and makeup that I was admiring!]
“How is your mother doing now?” he had asked.
I laughed and said, “Well, she’s dead.”
“And how are you doing now?”
“I’m actually doing a lot better than she ever did in her life,” I said. I’m more accomplished in my skills, I’ve made more money, I have a happier relationship, and my body is still alive at age 64 after overcoming cancer. She died of her cancer at age 51. My mother was a wonderful woman in many ways. As a piano teacher she introduced many children and adults to the world of music and their own ability to create it. And she was a spiritual teacher in her own right, to me and many of her students. She was well loved and admired by everyone who knew her. But she could have been much more if she had addressed her own limitations.
I looked back to my grandmother, who raised my mother. Her parents—my great grandparents—were born in Armenia and came to America just before the Armenian Genocide , during which the Young Turk government of the Ottonman Empire mass murdered 1.5 million Armenians during World War I (1915-1916). When my grandmother was a child here in America, she was kept inside her parents house at all times. She was not allowed to go to school. Her brother went to school and came home and taught her what he had learned. My grandfather courted her through an open window. She was full of fear. And this is what my mother was raised with. My mother too, was very fearful. I recognized this early in my life and tried to overcome any fear I could see, but maybe there are more.
In the evening, after dinner, I suddenly realized that I had confined myself with my conclusion that “my mother is more beautiful than me and has a more beautiful voice than mine and therefore I can’t be as [whatever] as her.” And I had been living in that confinement since.
Of course, seeing this released it, and I no longer feel confined to my mother’s limits. I feel much more free to experience life on my own terms.
This experience made me think about being confined and all the different ways we can use the act of confining for better or for worse. I feel like I now have the power to use confinement for good without being stopped by my own thought that to be confined is only a bad thing. Standing water is a swamp, but water confined by the banks of a river has a direction and movement and is full of life. Confinement is a part of life.
The next morning when I woke up I remembered a dream I had during the night.
I was in a very large church with oraate decorations and a lot of wood paneling.
I was sitting in the front pew.
A few feet from me a young man came and said to an older man, “The soloist isn’t here.”
I had already noted the name of the song the soloist would be singing in the program. It was The Holy City.
So I got up and went over and said, “I can sing the solo!”
The man hesitated to answer but the organ music started so I just stepped up and started singing.
I sang with confidence and power and freedom, my voice soaring all through the church and up into the arched ceiling.
NOTE: "The Holy City” was a song my mother used to sing when she was a church soloist. I would accompany her on the piano.
Obviously, at least in my dreams I was no longer confined.
And now I’m looking at the fact that so many millions of people are now confined due to covid-19. While it’s a good thing to be confined because it slows the spread of covid-19, the flip side is we are all confined and have lost our freedom to move about and earn money and celebrate with loved ones, or even to hold a loved one’s hand while they are dying. This is so massively widespread I have to ask myself why is being confined coming up now for so many people? And what is the lesson we can learn from this as human beings?
I see this time of global confinement as a opportunity for profound change. While there is much daily life we have lost, we are gaining time to consider our future, and what kind of world we want to create next.
DEBRA REDALIA, Co-Founder of Spirits Bright, became aware she was a spiritual being when her body was six years old, but didn't learn much about what that meant until she met soulmate Larry Redalia twenty-six years later. Together they have helped each other discover the characteristics of spirit and put them into practice in daily life. Since 2005, Debra and Larry have been writing Signs of Spirit stories—first person accounts of their true life adventures as spiritual belings. The are co-founders of Spirits Bright and The Signs of Spirit Project.
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