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Consciousness

Five Pesky Distractions That Pull You Off Your Path

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I’d be willing to bet that every one of you reading right now desires, in some way, to improve your situation or happiness levels, or perhaps even the landscape of your entire life.  This is a part of your innate wiring as a goal-oriented human being and it is so important that you can align yourself with this fundamental aspect of your nature in order that you can work with it, rather than against it.

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In the past 14 years of working closely with clients I’ve had the unique and privileged position of being able to observe many, many people at various stages on their spiritual path.  I have worked with people at the very beginning stages of their inner activation and awakening all the way up to those who have been on their path of self-actualization and discovery for 20 or 30+ years – as well as with those who have been at critical moments in their journey at every point in between.

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This experience has given me a solid understanding of the dynamics of the experience, how people react as they begin to notice and hone in on that deep inner restlessness or call for healing, growth, and deep meaningful life change.  In addition to contributing invaluable insight and perspective to my client’s understanding of themselves, connecting the dots between a client’s inner and outer lives also enables me to set the energetic stage upon which the profound change they desire can begin to unravel and unfold.

Noticing and giving voice to the deep inner call is the first step towards life-change for most people, and you may already have noticed this within yourself.  Next, as you begin to hone in on how that inner wisdom wants to show up, be experienced, seen, heard, and expressed, you naturally find yourself searching for new connections, information, tools, practices, and places as well as the structure, context, and support that life-coaching programs like the ones I facilitate provide.

One of the key aspects of really tuning into yourself at this stage is that your journey can feel uncertain, as if it isn’t quite ‘gelled,’ as though you are making it up as you go along – and this is because in very real ways, you are.  This is part of the vital process of getting to know and trust who you are at your spiritual core.  And the reason why the magnitude and depth of your connection with your real Self is so important is that a bit later on down the road, it is this very same quality of self-trust that will serve as the key that unlocks your potentiality and unique sacred purpose and gifts.

As your journey begins to take shape it is also important to be aware that one of the biggest pitfalls you can encounter is not having a clear understanding of where you are at present, not having a clear vision of where you want to go, and lastly, of the steps you need to take that will help you get there.  This can be debatable territory because your path, is just that – judgment on how it evolves can seem irrelevant and misplaced.  However it takes shape, it is yours. What is not debatable however is the universal truth that you were born a natural co-creator with powerful visionary qualities and the related resources and gifts needed to bring your fullest, happiest, most meaningful and purposeful life into the world.

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If you are reading this now and recognize that you have been feeling uncertain about your path and are not sure where you are or where you want to go, I want to give you a bit of context and insight that might help give you a better understanding of your situation now.

So with regards to those pitfalls I mentioned, here are 5 of the most common distractions I have noticed that can pull a person off of his/her desired spiritual path.

1. You feel desperately time-challenged

Your schedule simply doesn’t allow you the time and space you need to sit, breathe, contemplate the direction your life is headed or your true wants and needs.  Time, or rather, the lack of it is your worst enemy.  You blame your relationship with time for the fact that you are unable to show up to your process or yourself.  And you might feel completely convicted in adopting this stance too.

2. You have been putting yourself second and instead getting caught up in other people’s dramas and lives

You take on the role of the ‘fixer,’ the ‘healer,’ the ‘hero,’ or the person who your loved ones and those around you can always rely on to get things done.  You make yourself available at a moment’s notice without a thought about your own feelings, commitments, and needs.  You have taught people to believe that your needs, happiness, and life come with loose and very negotiable boundaries to the extent that it never occurs to them to ask what you need, how you are, or how you feel.

3. You have been feeling sorry for yourself

You step out of your power, your relationship with your real Self, focus primarily on and bemoan all the negativity and misfortune that has been happening around and to you.  There is a distinct underlying message of ‘poor me’ in your communication with others and in such a way that you have become immersed and trapped in the feeling of being a victim in your own life.

4. The story you tell yourself keeps you feeling safe but ‘stuck’ 

In my article What Story Do You Tell? I go into more detail around your inborn storytelling skills.  In the context of being able to fully embrace and honour your sacred purpose and spiritual path these can have a limiting effect when you tell yourself a story about why you cannot change or have MORE.  These can show up in the form of reasons that at first glance seem 100% plausible such as these below:

“My financial situation is what keeps me from creating and experiencing a real and lasting life change.”

“My partner doesn’t approve of me doing ‘X’ or ‘Y.’ ” or 

“I’ve read all the books and taken loads of courses – I don’t need help or support, I have all the knowledge I need to change my life.”

The example above around blaming your relationship with time is also another way in which the ‘story that you tell’ limits and prevents you from connecting into your TRUTH and taking empowering next steps.

5. You are waiting for the ‘perfect’ time

This is something I notice so commonly in folks, I know it is one of the most effective ways people unwittingly use to side-step the deep call for significant life-change.  It tends to show up in a fundamental belief that things will somehow be more perfect, spacious, or aligned at some point in the future.  It can sound like any one of the following statements that I have actually been told by some of my existing clients below:

“In September, my workload will have eased and I will have much more time to devote to the healing journey and life-change I want.”

“I am SO excited about working with you.  I am expecting a big lump sum of back-payment owed to me in the summer so will be able to pay for this program in the fall.”

“Once the kids leave home I can think about myself, my feelings and needs and figure out what I want to do with this unhappy marriage and life I feel trapped in.”

The common thread in each of these examples is that the person is completely missing the fact that their inner wisdom only speaks to them on the importance of things in the NOW.  That is, their Spirits are interested in securing their happiness and well-being NOW, not at some vague point in the future that their minds have latched on to so they won’t have to commit to serious life-change NOW.

So if you are seeing yourself in one or more of these five common examples that from one perspective can seem entirely rational and plausible and from another, completely block you from going after and enjoying the change of life circumstances you want the most, what I want to say to you is that change is possible.  There IS hope.

If you are noticing any of these patterns play out in your life right now, realize that this moment for you is HUGE.

Why?

Because in this moment you are seeing and beginning to grasp on a very fundamental level, the very self-imposed limits that have been holding you back.  And once you see yourself in this new way, it becomes a lot more difficult for you to lose yourself in those habits and patterns in quite the same way.

At this place it is imperative you realize that as a human being it is your tendency to stick with what you know.  You naturally gravitate towards that which keeps you feeling safe – even if that something also keeps you feeling restricted and ‘stuck.’  This is another way of saying that as a human being inborn with primal instincts to survive, for the most part, you are wired to fear the unknown.

The deep inner call for life-change you have been feeling has been asking you to step into unknown territory and your natural response has been to stick with what you know.

And as you stand here on the cusp of the life-change you desire with every fibre of your being, here is what I know:

You will only be able to change your life when you become committed to that goal – no matter what.

It is your unwavering commitment and determination combined with a white-hot desire for a better, happier life filled with MORE in every area, that brings your process and path to you, and in such a way that you can exercise your co-creative abilities and make them your very own.

Now that you can see more clearly where you have been losing your power, are you willing to do whatever it takes to reclaim it?

How determined are you to change your life now – no matter what?

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Consciousness

Conspireality: Is It Time For A Serious Conversation?

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The mainstream and traditional media seem to be failing to have important conversations that are controversial, while at the same time perhaps there isn't enough rigor and critical thinking in alternative media communities.

  • Reflect On:

    Given we are deeply feeling the need to make sense of our world, is it time we begin to look at developing the inner faculties necessary to move beyond ideology, limited thinking patterns and truly begin looking at what evidence around us says?

One thing I’m noticing now more than ever before in my experience as a journalist and researcher, and as a human in general, is that people are hungry for information that is deeper than what they are getting through the mainstream media. It feels as though people are beginning to recognize that there is a degree of corruption involved in our world and that politicians and traditional media outlets have been compromised in the process. How can you weed through the confusion? What media can I trust? What is the truth? These are all big questions many are now having. Further, there is a lack of trust in many professional or societal experts due to a felt sense that they have been compromised as well. In an attempt to get answers to these questions, people have been looking for alternative information or perspectives about many current events in an attempt to make sense of the world.

I’ve worked 11 years in independent media now. I founded Collective Evolution in 2009 for the purposes of having conversations I felt were important but perhaps not widely available. Initially beginning as a platform for exploring consciousness awakening, CE ventured into current events, as I felt they often reflect the inner aspect of who we are as people – and as a collective. That said, for most of the time CE has been around, we’ve covered some sort of alternative perspective on current events as part of our job. Our commitment was to do this in a way that was as open, transparent, and unbiased as possible. Improving in our style and quality over the years, we often get feedback from a wide audience feeling that we do a pretty good job of staying neutral and open to various possibilities, while still covering what might be considered controversial subjects. Things people call ‘conspiracies.’

Calling these sometimes controversial subjects ‘conspiracy theories’ is a bit unfortunate as it’s a loaded term that brings about many connotations and a general lack of clarity. Does ‘conspiracy theory’ mean there is no evidence? It is not probable? It is not to be believed? Only crazy people who don’t think critically look at them? Was the fact that the NSA spied on US citizens illegally a conspiracy theory before Edward Snowden revealed the truth about that to the world? It was. The idea that ‘big brother’ is watching was considered a paranoid delusion by many, yet they were in fact watching and recording almost everything people in the US did.

Thus, the title of this piece includes the term ‘conspireality’ as it is my feeling that some things we often call conspiracy theories are in fact true, we just don’t know it yet or haven’t accepted it. In that same token, there is an observation I’m seeing within the space of ‘conspiracies’ that is truly important to discuss and reflect on.

Note: much of what I want to share will be written here, more will be in the video at the bottom.

The Rise of The Alternative

For decades people have felt that there is more to mainstream media narratives when it comes to current events. The JFK assassination, UFOs, MK Ultra, the real cause of wars, powerful people who control aspects of society, etc. Typically, much of these conversations remained on the fringe and were had on late night radio shows or unpopular books few knew about. But the advent of the internet and it’s subsequent popularity birthed an opportunity for these ideas and conversations to spread more easily. As time went on, people began to feel ‘alternative’ history or facts about events that happen in our world are increasingly important. While it might be common to chalk this up to some form of mental illness or misstep in thought, there is actually a large number of intelligent and well-read people who are actively exploring very credible information that tells a different, and credible, story about widely accepted mainstream narratives. A recent podcast on The Joe Rogan Experience with guest Tom O’Neil is a perfect example. Tom has spent the last 20 years of his life investigating and writing a book called Chaos: Charles Manson, the CIA, and the Secret History of the Sixties which was published by Little, Brown in the summer of 2019.

As the description of his book reads:

Twenty years ago, when journalist Tom O’Neill was reporting a magazine piece about the murders, he worried there was nothing new to say. Then he unearthed shocking evidence of a cover-up behind the “official” story, including police carelessness, legal misconduct, and potential surveillance by intelligence agents. When a tense interview with Vincent Bugliosi — prosecutor of the Manson Family and author of Helter Skelter — turned a friendly source into a nemesis, O’Neill knew he was onto something. But every discovery brought more questions.

O’Neill’s quest for the truth led him from reclusive celebrities to seasoned spies, from San Francisco’s summer of love to the shadowy sites of the CIA’s mind-control experiments, on a trail rife with shady cover-ups and suspicious coincidences. The product of two decades of reporting, hundreds of new interviews, and dozens of never-before-seen documents from the LAPD, the FBI, and the CIA, Chaos mounts an argument that could be, according to Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney Steven Kay, strong enough to overturn the verdicts on the Manson murders. This is a book that overturns our understanding of a pivotal time in American history.

As I listened to the podcast episode, many of the subjects discussed, including the United State’s government mind control program MK Ultra, and the JFK Assassination were explored with undeniable evidence and important lines of questioning. Contrary to the belief that many of these subjects are mere conspiracy theories brought on by people who only deal in circumstantial evidence and who believe anything that sounds like an entertaining theory, we’re seeing some real truth here. Truth that would completely change the public’s perspective on government and the intelligence community. The implications are huge when you really start to look at it and what the evidence clearly indicates.

This is not the only event that evidently shows coverups. Recent admissions by the US Navy has clearly indicated that government and intelligence communities have been keeping the public in the dark about UFOs for a long time. Looking at government documents and whistleblowers that have been available for decades, you can find out very quickly that much more is going on behind the scenes than people realize, and the discussion of UFOs is really nothing to be gawked at as it often is. Before public admission of the reality of UFOs, the media and many academics made fun of people who believed in UFOs as if they were crazy. Now that same media is telling you they’re real. While they aren’t necessarily saying who is manning these UFOs, the conversation is quickly turning towards admitting to so many of the things ‘conspiracy theorists’ have discussed. One could say that UFOs as a conspiracy theory became reality when the NAVY admitted to the validity of the video evidence that emerged. Do we know exactly what is going on? No, but we know a lot more. Likewise with the NSA’s ‘big brother spying’ program – it’s no longer a conspiracy theory thanks to Edward Snowden. In that sense, you can see where I’m getting my ‘conspireality’ term from – conspiracies that have become reality. The question now is, how do we have conversations about remaining ‘conspiracies’ seriously? Where we look at the evidence with an open mind and truly see what it says.

Alternative media has been covering these topics for years prior to mainstream media even opening up to the idea. Alt media has been filling a void in media that aligns with a correct intuition people have that there is more to what we’re being told – and it involves some highly controversial topics. Hence the rise in alternative media. Popularity grew because it was feeding something deep within people that they felt but could not get from the mainstream. In return, the mainstream culture seems to have taken issue with the rise of alternative media as it represents a loss of having a monopoly on narratives.

Time For A Serious Conversation?

Before I continue I want to be clear that this is a complex and nuanced conversation, and the themes I’m going to discuss don’t apply to all people, but seem to be a big part of ‘alternative’ thinking culture.

As mainstream or traditional media continues to fail to ask the right questions about what is going on in our world (whether it was due to a lack of interest in the part of journalists, direction from media directors, or perhaps a gag order from someone ‘higher up’), it can be said that alternative media may not always carry the necessary standards in reporting and conversation to be taken seriously. Yet these emerging conversations are incredibly important and needed.

Lately, I’ve been grappling with this difficult topic, and I sometimes find it a bit tough to even put into words. It is something I’ve loosely discussed for years now, but am now really moving to open up a dialogue about it as I believe we’ve reached an absolutely critical juncture in time where we must begin to explore themes I’m about to present. Themes that involve anything from free speech to societal decline, division, and our potential to create a world where we can thrive. I believe much of what we’ll discuss here is critical to all that and more.

The topic I’ve struggled with lately is that I feel many people in the ‘alternative’ or ‘conspiracy’ community, defined contextually for this article as those who are often well-intended in seeking alternative narratives the mainstream does not offer, seem to have become very ideological, absolute, and extreme about their positions. The conversations being had often jump to conclusions even without evidence, and attack anyone who doesn’t agree with them as being ‘sheeple’ or brain dead. It’s creating huge divides, yet very few want to admit it. Most importantly, it’s making it very hard to have these important conversations about controversial topics that need to be had at this moment. Further, and as I foresaw years ago, it’s also inviting censorship.

Let’s get clear here. You might see a meme that shows a picture with Bill Gates and Jeffrey Epstein, and thus it automatically means we now have proof Gates is a pedophile. ‘The Deep State mass arrests are coming any day now.’ Just as they have been for the last 10 years. Yet still, if you don’t understand that these mass arrests are coming, you’re asleep. The key distinction here is the sense of certainty, the sense that it’s all so obvious, even when it’s not. The use of poor evidence, circumstantial evidence, or none at all, to ‘prove’ what’s going on has overtaken critical thinking. It almost seems like people have become more interested in the entertainment value of this controversial information as opposed to how true it actually might be or how much evidence there truly is.

Take the X22 report for example. He pulls together a ton of circumstantial evidence, matches it with Q posts and then offers an analysis. Many believe his work clearly shows facts in drawing conclusions, but in reality, it’s mere speculation. This is perfectly fine, but people are getting lost in seeing this as unequivocal fact, as opposed to mere speculation. X22 has suggested for example that Julian Assange is safe and sound and his arrest is nothing but ‘part of the plan’ by the Q patriots to save America from the Deep State. In his video, you can follow all of the evidence he proposes, why Assange had a book in his hand, what that book meant, and how it was a code for people to look deeper. This, while those close to Assange, including independent reporters and family, have been saying he is being tortured and suffering deeply in prison. So on one hand you have ‘truthers’ saying he’s fine, don’t worry, part of the plan. And then you have those who actually know him and have access to him saying the situation is bad and people need to help do something about it. Those same truthers have then said “don’t worry, those reporters and family are part of the plan too… it’s all optics.” You can see the issue here.

What I’m getting at is many popular voices in alternative media approach ‘conspiracy theories’ in a way that turns circumstantial evidence into unquestionable truth. Delivered with a sense of certainty or sweeping generalizations. They can often lack critical thinking because they match their circumstantial evidence with the overarching story they have chosen to believe as fact. In turn, many viewers of alternative media seem to have begun believing these ideas as pure truth, without applying the same critical thinking rigor to alt narratives as they would have to mainstream narratives.

This by no means is everyone who watches alternative media. In fact, I have often stated and observed that many who do view alternative media do so because they have developed great critical thinking skills and have realized that there is not much value these days out in watching mainstream or traditional media. That said, there is still a large group of presenters and viewers who make up a culture within the alternative space that does contribute to undermining these conversations. Take Jeffrey Epstein for example. A huge case that began to connect underage sex/pedophile rings to powerful people in the world. An idea that has been around for a long time thanks to survivors and whistleblowers who have told their story. The mainstream media has never done a good job of covering this, and traditional journalists have often shied away from it. Now though, this conversation is huge and ready to be had – people are listening. Then comes the part I’m trying to raise awareness about here: some people in the alternative community will undermine these conversations by aggressively positing that every politician pictured with Epstein is automatically a pedophile and involved. This among other assertions that are easy to debunk of course. This makes it easy for mainstream media or fact-checkers to begin easily debunking ‘conspiracy theories’ related to Jeffrey Epstein as bogus – and in a lot of cases, they are right. Yet, there is actually a meaningful conversation to be had here, there is truth to explore, but if people are not more careful, these conversations won’t be had because their lack of critical thinking and completely certain positions close the door for other onlookers and make it easy to bury this information as unfounded and delusional conspiracies. After all, a quick Google search will return plenty of mainstream media positions analyzing the psychological nature of ‘those who believe in conspiracy theories’ as if there is no real truth to any of them, and that people are just ‘out of their minds’ of sorts.

For myself personally in doing this work for the last 11 years, it is extremely common to have our work lumped in all other “baseless conspiracy theories” due to the fact that we’re often covering the same topics that are considered baseless conspiracy theories because they were covered poorly by others or simply because they sound similar. We become guilty by association and part of a culture of people who seem to simply believe everything without any real evidence, this, regardless of the fact that we approach these important conversations with evidence and rigor.

Perhaps you’ve had the experience where you suggest in conversation “I don’t feel Jeffrey Epstein killed himself.” And right away a friend says “oh, you sound like a conspiracy theorist.” One might assume it’s because that friend is not open-minded or was convinced by mainstream media it’s all a conspiracy, when in reality that friend may have witnessed a ton of laughable and paranoid content with weak evidence and harshly stated ‘facts’ that when researched, returned no real results. Thus the question becomes, is the ‘conspiracy’ community actually digging their own grave and just blaming mainstream media for why people don’t listen?

How Can We Adjust?

11 years ago I had a vision of creating media that approaches understanding our world in a different way. As our About Us page on CE states:

We live in a time where virtually every aspect of our society is changing or crumbling. Power is shifting and old ways of looking at and understanding our world are no longer working. New voices and ideas are emerging that encourage us to look more deeply at why our world is the way it is, and what about us creates it to be this way.

Collective Evolution is a news-media and education company that creates content to explore how humanity can shift our consciousness and way of being to evolve beyond the personal and global challenges we face. We help encourage the development of inner faculties to explore more about how we can arrive at truth as opposed to just saying what truth is. Our work encourages a greater connection to self, an increase of self-awareness and being aware of what’s around us. We encourage others to let information be as opposed to it defining who we are and developing ideology. 

What do our current events say about how we operate as people? What do our societal structures and common issues say about our level of thinking (consciousness) and what type of ideas we’re bringing to the table? What if the solution to the many challenges we feel we face today is actually in changing how we think, relate to one another, and even relate to our world?

We feel this is one of the key missing factors in mainstream media, alternative media and traditional societal discussions today, and therefore we create our content to inspire personal transformation and the expansion of collective consciousness through two key avenues: news media and personal transformation content.”

We’ve always felt that bringing the inner work, inner transformation aspect into making sense of our world was key as it is empowering and actually allows each person to take responsibility for what they are creating in their life and in the world. By developing inner faculties like critical thinking, presence, self-awareness, and intuition, we can better understand our world and why it is the way it is. We can also begin to become aware of an expanded state of who we are, which may choose to create society from a completely different mindset than simply believing we are a cog in the wheel with beliefs and ideologies that are outdated and don’t resonate with us.

Thus I’m putting forth a call here, firstly, perhaps it’s time we move on from this whole idea of calling things a “conspiracy theory.” We have learned by now that if we apply critical thinking and proper journalism to many of these controversial ideas, what’s worth exploring further becomes clear quickly. I discuss these ideas much more deeply in a video I produced on this subject in relation to a few early statements made by David Icke during a London Real interview about COVID-19. David assertively states that “COVID-19 does not exist” and then proceeds to make a strong link between COVID-19 and 5G. I’m not saying David is a bad researcher or anything of that fashion, on the contrary, I believe some of his work is solid, and asks some great questions. But what I’m saying is, if you look at the aftermath of that conversation, whereby assertions are made that are certainly nothing more than speculation but not presented as such, we can clearly see what shifts need to be made in how these conversations are approached so we can do a better job of having them seriously and uniting people.

5G as a conversation was deeply undermined as mainstream media had an easy time stating there is no evidence linking 5G to COVID, and now those who look into 5G safety might be highly skeptical because the ‘crazy conspiracy’ was that 5G created COVID. Further, there are serious discussions to be had around the origins of COVID-19 and whether or not the authoritarian measures are truly necessary, yet how can we easily have those conversations when such a large portion of the community is simply saying COVID is a hoax and that it doesn’t exist? This isn’t to say that these ideas should not be explored, this is the piece many seem to miss. They want it to be a black and white conversation – who are the good guys? Who are the bad guys? Should I do this, or that? When in reality, this is a conversation about making sense of a situation that is extremely complex, and if we try and put forth one all-encompassing theory that is certain about what’s going on right now, we can’t possibly be accurate in that as we simply don’t know everything. So why assert it as such?  It is virtually impossible. Yet those who don’t agree with this all-encompassing and obvious agenda…. asleep. This is the issue I want to talk about more in the video below. I also offer what I feel are some solutions and realizations people could reflect on to see how they feel for them.

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Consciousness

A Spiritual Perspective On Smoking Cannabis: An Important Viewpoint To Consider

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    In the video below, Sadhguru shares his perspective on smoking marijuana and why it's not truly needed to achieve the feeling one may receive to do it.

  • Reflect On:

    I'm not saying there isn't medicinal value and that we should outlaw this plant, I'm saying we have a very large societal challenge, just like with alcohol, where we are not facing our inner challenges and are using substances to cover them up.

I was having a conversation yesterday about something that has always been a reflection point for me. Since I was a kid, I was never drawn to substances, even alcohol. I always felt great, high even, when just being.

As I got older and I finally tried cannabis for the first time, and then a few more times after that as years went on, I started to realize it actually brought my state of being and clarity down. The tough part was trying to explain that to others when having conversations about how these substances don’t produce a true experience of higher consciousness, but more so give you a glimpse in a sense.

Before we go on, I want to bring something up. The challenge with this topic is that we tend to get very emotional and rigid about it. Not only that, but we aggressively try to lump people into FOR or AGAINST cannabis. I’m not here to do that. I’m simply creating a reflection point as my desire is to help shift consciousness and empower us within to create a world where we can truly thrive. So for a moment, set aside your own hard coded beliefs and just be open to what this article is shining light on.

Societal Cannabis Culture

For the most part society either breaks down into people who judge cannabis as a drug that is for ‘stoners’ and are very against it. These people tend to believe there are no positives to cannabis. On the flip side are the people who feel cannabis is an amazing wonder plant that can do no wrong, and that the “highs” it provides expand the mind and we experience peace.

The truth is, cannabis has good aspects and not so good aspects to it. And while the positives can be really helpful for a very small subset of people on this planet, smoking it is one of the worst ways to use cannabis health wise. Not only that, society is using its medical benefits to turn attention away from the addiction many users have to it. This is a tough pill to swallow and makes many people aggressive and angry when I bring it up, but it’s true. In a big way, but not all the time, we are using cannabis as a society to help cope with feelings deep down that we want to shut off or hide from. As a note, we are also using food, TV and other things in the same way, but right now I want to focus on this reflection.

Cannabis can assist people with autism, people who have seizures, and in some cases it may have helped people cure cancer. There are benefits that can come from this plant being used in a proper medicinal way, but we must remember to look at the downsides that come from regular cannabis use that many simply don’t want to acknowledge.

A Note On Legalization

First off, I do not believe the plant ever needed to be illegal to begin with. In fact I’ve done much research on how it became illegal and it really had more to do with protecting an industry more than anything else.

That said, there is something to consider here that many of us aren’t looking at too clearly when it comes to what legalization really means. It means that powerful people are going to be the ones who profit most from it, that’s why it’s becoming legal. Not only that, but the reason it is taking so long is so they can get in place the many aspects required to make sure they achieve what they want: stripping medicinal aspects out of the plant profiles, controlling the seeds, and ultimately feeding society cannabis focused solely on creating a THC based ‘high’. This is no different than controlling alcohol and feeding it to society in the ways we currently do.

The cannabis industry is worth over $40 billion, making it the second-most-valuable crop in the U.S. after corn. As stated in a powerful article by GQ, “And even though weed is still federally forbidden, it sounded like whoever was behind BioTech Institute had spent the past several years surreptitiously maneuvering to grab every marijuana farmer, vendor, and scientist in the country by the balls, so that once the drug became legal, all they’d have to do to collect payment is squeeze.”

Humans should be able to make choices as to what they want to do to themselves and their bodies i.e. smoke cannabis or consume alcohol, but I believe greater education needs to be placed behind both and ultimately: we must start looking at the real reasons as to why we use both of these substances so often.

Looking At Cannabis Differently

I see that in many ways the use of cannabis is making the average user numb, in the same way alcohol does. I’ve used cannabis before, in a number of ways -smoking, edibles etc. I’m not saying the feeling is the same for every single user, but I’ve also been around thousands of cannabis users in my lifetime while they were high and you notice the same ‘vibe’ virtually every time. Perhaps there are varying degrees, but for the most part it numbs us out and sometimes quiets the thoughts to create a calmness. Is this like meditation? No, but it can be confused as that. I know, I’ve been there too.

Below is a video of a perspective on cannabis I feel is very important for us to consider. Let me be clear, I’m not saying there isn’t medicinal value and that we should outlaw this plant, I’m saying we have a very large societal challenge, just like with alcohol, where we are not facing our inner challenges and are using substances to cover them up. I am inspired to help create a world where we can truly empower ourselves form within, move beyond our mind and egoic challenges that help us grow and do just that – grow. But if we continually bury our challenges in substance, we won’t.

I believe it’s time we come to the uncomfortable truth and face the fact that as a society we have not done the greatest job in encouraging one another to truly explore, express and move beyond many of the emotional challenges life’s experiences have provided us, that are there for our growth. Think about it, do we want to just cope through life? Or do we want to truly move beyond our stuff? There is SO much suffering we can prevent by making it a societal norm to work through our challenges on a deep level. This is where I believe we must go.

Note: You can try meditation to help calm the mind and move more clearly through challenges. Here are more tools as well.

Lost relationships, divorces, losing jobs, feeling unloved, lack of confidence, depression etc. All of these things are not here so that we can use bandaids everyday to cover them up and get through them, they are here for us to learn more about ourselves, grow and evolve as people and as a society. To create a world where we can truly thrive. To get there, we must begin to face our challenges.

I made this choice 10 years ago when I started to discover meditation and inner reflection, and although I wasn’t a user of substances like alcohol or cannabis, I would use food to cover up my emotions or I would distract myself with TV, whatever worked. But I can share from experience, the incredible changes that come from shifting those stories within and gaining true empowerment will change everything in your life, and everyone can do it.

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Consciousness

New Moon In Virgo: Efficiency & Practicality

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We are having a New Moon in Virgo on September 17th. This is initiating a 29.5 day lunar cycle and new wave of energy for the coming month; however, the astrological configurations mentioned in this article will be more prominent over the following two weeks. This cycle will include a Full Moon in Aries on October 1st/2nd.

Virgo season began on August 22nd/23rd, nearly a month prior to this Lunation, and will end on September 22nd/23rd when Libra season begins. However, his New Moon will still carry some of its Virgo themes into the first eight days of Libra season prior to the Full Moon.

This is a good period of working with and co-creating with the energies of this sign. Virgo is associated with productivity, duties, service, health, cleanliness, and purity. It is organized, adaptable, conscientious, skillful, orderly, punctual, diligent, efficient, analytical, detailed, discerning, precise, and practical.

Virgo is about problem solving, adjusting to changing conditions, and coming up with solutions. Negatively, this energy can be cynical, fussy, high strung, and perfectionistic. It can also be exorbitantly mentally oriented as well as overly critical and discriminating.

Mars began its retrograde a week prior to this New Moon which will last until mid-November. This energy is a significant part of the current astrological backdrop. Generally it is a time that can ultimately help to facilitate a change in how we apply ourselves in certain areas of life, however, the retrograde period itself can bring frustrations and challenges that help with that process. You can read more about this Mars Retrograde here.

New Moon Trine Saturn & Quincunx Mars Retrograde

This New Moon is in a tight trine with Saturn in Capricorn which is transitioning out of its retrograde at the end of the month. This can be a good period for operating in a responsible, cautious, orderly, productive, realistic and practical way. However, considering that Saturn is finishing up its backwards motion, these next couple of weeks are generally better for getting things sorted out and prepared as well as perhaps focusing on tasks that you have already been working on.

It is possible that in late September and in early October, we can experience some sort of shift, or change in gears, that can take things into a different direction. Saturn will be in a square with Mars Retrograde at that time, and we may have to contend with limitations and obstacles that can affect how certain things move forward.

This New Moon is also in a quincunx with Mars retrograde which can reflect annoyances, tension, or conflicts that may require adjustments and adaptability. Issues that come up may be at odds with our needs or the way we want to express ourselves. This energy is the strongest on the 19th/20th but can also be more noticeable on the day of the New Moon.

New Moon Square Lunar Nodes, Mercury Square Jupiter

This New Moon is also in a close square to the North Node in Gemini opposing the South Node in Sagittarius. We may be at odds between the past (South Node) and the future (North Node), beliefs (Sagittarius) and facts (Gemini), our immediate aspects of life (Gemini) and the world at large (Sagittarius).

However, the focal point should be the North Node in Gemini and expressions of the South Node in Sagittarius energy should be serving that focal point and not be the emphasis. The rulers of the Nodes, Mercury (Gemini) and Jupiter (Sagittarius) are also in a tight square with each other at the time of this New Moon. This can reflect tension between these two sides and potentially conflicts between ideas, viewpoints, and opinions.

Jupiter is in the limiting Saturnian sign of Capricorn while Mercury is better placed in Libra, the sign of diplomacy, seeking common ground, considering different needs/perspectives, and fairness. Mercury square Jupiter can be good for learning but it can also be excessive when it comes to information and we can more easily be mentally scattered.

Mercury Quincunx Neptune, Then Square Pluto, Saturn & Opposing Mars

Mercury is in a quincunx with Neptune which is strongest on the 18th/19th. This energy makes it harder to integrate or juggle our intuitive, creative, imaginative, compassionate or spiritual expression with our mind, communication, tasks, and thought process. Issues pertaining to lack of boundaries, flakiness, delusion, escapism, intoxication, may come up.

Mercury moves towards a square with Pluto which is strongest on the 20th/21st. Our thoughts and communications can be deep, powerful, penetrating, investigative, raw, real, and potentially intense. This can also reflect obsessive or compulsive behavior, suspicion, fears, anxiety, or conflicts pertaining to power or authority.

Mercury then moves to a square with Saturn (22nd/23rd) followed by an opposition to Mars retrograde (23rd/24th), creating a t-square formation in that time period with the separating Pluto energy (20th/21st, mentioned above) tied into it a bit. This can be a time of obstacles, delays, communication issues, pessimism, and conflicts while we can get more easily irritated or angered. Circumstances may come up that can be pushing us to be more cautious, realistic, or responsible.

This period is the beginning of Mercury’s pre-shadow period in which it will be returning to another square with Saturn. Some of the issues or developments that occur at this time may be connected to things that will play out during the retrograde (October 13th/14th until November 3rd/4th) and weeks surrounding that period. It will also be the Equinox and therefore this energy is imprinted into the following three months in which it can manifest in other ways/areas separate from this initial period.

Making Intentions & Things To Consider

What can you do to be more practical, productive, and efficient? Is there anything you can or should implement to improve your health and functionality? What have the circumstances, developments, or challenges over the last week (leading up to this New Moon) shown you in how you should be applying yourself? Do you need to implement stronger boundaries? Do you need to be more adaptable? Are you clinging to the past or are you willing to take steps to help you grow? What aspects or details of your immediate life, surroundings, or relationships do you need to focus on more and what excesses or broad aspects of your life are getting in the way of that?

These are just some examples of what to consider or focus your intentions on at this time. However, it is good to reflect on anything else that is coming up for you. It is generally best to make any intentions within the first 24 hours following a New Moon. The exact moment it will occur is 11:00am Universal Time on September 17th. You can click here to see what that is in your time zone.

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Collective Evolution is one of the world's fastest-growing conscious media and education companies providing news and tools to raise collective consciousness. Get inside access to Collective Evolution by becoming a member of CETV.

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