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Parables For The New Conversation (Chapter 25: The Flower)

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

The following is a chapter from my book ‘Parables For The New Conversation.’ One chapter will be published every Sunday for 36 weeks here on Collective Evolution. (I would recommend you start with Chapter 1 if you haven’t already read it.) I hope my words are a source of enjoyment and inspiration for you, the reader. If perchance you would like to purchase a signed paperback copy of the book, you can do so on my production company website Pandora’s Box Office.

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From the back cover: “Imagine a conversation that centers around possibility—the possibility that we can be more accepting of our own judgments, that we can find unity through our diversity, that we can shed the light of our love on the things we fear most. Imagine a conversation where our greatest polarities are coming together, a meeting place of East and West, of spirituality and materialism, of religion and science, where the stage is being set for a collective leap in consciousness more magnificent than any we have known in our history.

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Now imagine that this conversation honors your uniqueness and frees you to speak from your heart, helping you to navigate your way more deliberately along your distinct path. Imagine that this conversation puts you squarely into the seat of creator—of your fortunes, your relationships, your life—thereby putting the fulfillment of your deepest personal desires well within your grasp.

‘Parables for the New Conversation’ is a spellbinding odyssey through metaphor and prose, personal sagas and historic events, where together author and reader explore the proposal that at its most profound level, life is about learning to consciously manifest the experiences we desire–and thus having fun. The conversation touches on many diverse themes but always circles back to who we are and how our purposes are intertwined, for it is only when we see that our personal desires are perfectly aligned with the destiny of humanity as a whole that we will give ourselves full permission to enjoy the most exquisite experiences life has to offer.”

25. The Flower

In the village flower shop on the island of Allandon the mason was looking through the selection of flowers and, finding nothing to his satisfaction, waded out back where the florist was tending to her extensive garden.

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“I have a special request,” the mason said. “Cut me a fresh flower that has just reached perfection.”

“No problem,” said the florist. She smartly clipped one of the nearby flowers and handed it to the mason with a smile.

“No, I don’t think so,” the mason said. “This flower is still too green; the buds haven’t opened enough.”

The florist moved quietly to another flower bush, again cut one off and gave it to the mason.

The mason looked at the flower in dismay. “Can’t you see this flower has already started to decline? The petals are wrinkled and it’s falling apart,” he said, shaking the flower and spilling some of the seeds from its mouth.

The florist calmly picked up one of the seeds from the ground and held it out in her open palm. “Perhaps this is what you’re looking for.”

The mason shook his head. “What’s wrong with you? Can’t you tell when a flower is perfect?”

“Of course I can tell when a flower is perfect,” the florist said. “I just can’t tell when it’s not.”

I have been in the habit of trying to figure out how life works for most of my adult existence. This probably started from my acute inability to flow with life when I was younger. I was confused and fearful, and my only defense at the time was to try to understand it in order to control it. This was a fairly solitary pursuit, for often when I attempted to have conversations with my friends about it they would tease and rebuke me for being overly ‘intellectual’.

I find it happily ironic that my persistent reflection, reading, and practices—driven by insecurity though they may have been—helped me come full circle to a place where I no longer feel the need to try to control life. In fact I now hold an unwavering conviction inside me that life is perfect just the way it is. It is a belief that is ever strengthened by my ongoing experiences, like a potter’s urn fired in a kiln. Today, if I ever notice myself feeling down or discontent with my life, I know that it is because of who I am choosing to be in that moment and not about life itself. Life is like the sun, which continues to shine even when it is hidden by clouds and we see only rain. It always is and always will be an opportunity to experience new heights of joy, exuberance, and passion. Life stands ready to offer us its bounty in all situations.

That does not mean to say that things always go in my life the way I want them to. My Ego Self takes me on rides to far away places—far away from my true self, that is—and as a result it can be quite a struggle to return to a place of peace and centeredness, a place where I really do feel at my best. If I am struggling with anger, sadness, jealousy, fear, guilt or despair, sometimes all I need is to remember to ask myself the question: Have you forgotten that life is perfect? No matter how badly things have gotten for me, I will never deny this. This conviction helps me to accept that whatever is happening to me in the present moment is exactly what needs to happen, and becoming more conscious in the moment will eventually be enough to pull myself out of the manhole I have slowly and inconspicuously slid into.

The Ego Self fights the idea that ‘life is perfect’ tooth and nail. For the Ego Self life is dangerous, because we are alone. We need to learn strategies to cope, compete well, and make tactical alliances while being careful who we trust. When something happens that we don’t like we must call it bad, wrong, or unjust—presumably to prevent it from happening again. Our Ego Self might cleverly argue that if life were perfect then we wouldn’t need to do anything. We wouldn’t try to make our lives or the lives of others any better. We would become complacent, apathetic, bored. We wouldn’t need to change.

This is just the kind of reactive thinking that we need to save ourselves from, a thinking that says we have to wait for the pain of a relationship or the boredom of a job to be intolerable before we are willing to take on the discomfort of making a change. When we step back out of the clutches of the Ego Self and into our Dao Self, that is to say when we become more conscious, we see that it is our resistance to change, sponsored by the Ego Self, that is causing the suffering and preventing us from seeing that life is perfect the way it is. When we become more conscious, we can shift from beings who change because we have to into beings who change because we want to. Instead of being driven by a fear of the suffering of life we are driven by a love of the rapture of life.

Change is actually embraced when we are in the flow of life, because as we have said, life is change. The desire to change something does not first require our condemnation of it as something wrong or bad. In my experience, condemning something and making it wrong has never changed it or made it better. If anything, it brings hopelessness and causes the painful situation to persist.

I was once coaching a client around her desire to change a situation and move forward in her life. We went through a visualization process that helps to free the client up to see the source of the problem. In her visualization she saw herself stuck, trying to climb out of a heavy pool of mud. In the distance, she envisioned a clean, vibrant oasis, which represented where she wanted to get to. She was very unhappy and frustrated with being stuck. Her eyes were looking forward towards the oasis but she seemed to be unable to dislodge herself. When I asked her about the experience of being in the muck she just kept saying how difficult it was for her to get out. She described how awful the feeling of being stuck was, how much effort it was taking to try to move out of it with no avail.

After a few moments something came to me. I suggested that before trying to get out of the muck, she might try to be OK about being in the muck for a while, and describe what it felt like. In other words, I wanted her to pretend that things were perfect in the moment. She was a bit surprised by her own resistance to this at first, but she visualized being still, and stopped struggling with what was bad, what should not be, long enough to speak about what it actually felt like to be in the muck. To her surprise, the muck was no longer so uncomfortable once she had settled into it.

After we had done that, I asked her what happens next. With great excitement, she saw herself suddenly flying out of the muck with a full burst of energy, and getting easily to the paradise on the horizon. This was the trigger she needed. When we ended the visualization with her moving happily towards the oasis, she felt that she was no longer stuck in her real life. She saw the possibility for enthusiastic action, and the next time I spoke to her she told me that she had already made important progress. The powerful lesson we both took from that session is that in order to have any power to make changes, we must first acknowledge and accept where we are in the moment, in the now, the wellspring of the perfection of life.

When we look upon the cycles of nature, we can see the stage of each moment cannot be ‘wrong’. We can appreciate that no season is better or worse than the next, no phase of the moon or time of day is the ‘right’ one. They are all essential parts of their respective rhythms. But when we try to apply this principle to our lives, it is easy to miss the perfection. We don’t see the times we have become depressed, or the times we have fallen ill, or the times other people let us down as part of the perfection. We believe that there are a great many things wrong in the world, direly and desperately evil and unjust, and feel the need to fight against and destroy these things if we are to get where we are going.

In actual fact, this only blocks us from where we are going. When we are so serious about the game of life that we forget it is a game, we also lose our appreciation for the fact that life has been set up for the benefit of all of us. If we keep a clear mind and an open heart, we can see that we always have within ourselves the faculties to meet and overcome any of the ongoing challenges that life provides. When we learn any sort of game, which stage of it is really the most satisfying, the most joyful? Is it the beginning, when we are just getting familiar to the rules and are open to the new challenges that lie ahead? Is it soon after, when we first show signs of proficiency and have evidence of our improvement? Or is it when we come close to mastery of the game?

I would suggest that the stage of life that is the most satisfying and joyous is always the one you are at in the moment. That’s where the perfection in the universe lies. The stage you are at in this moment is exactly where you need to be; it is the source of your greatest possible experience in life. It is only when we look away from the moment, to the aspirations of the future, to the way things ought to be, or to the passing of a time gone by, the way things should continue to be, that we are taken out of the potential wonder of the present moment.

When we lose sight of the perfection of life it is even possible to take the miracle of the flowering of human consciousness and turn it into nothing more than a dire race to save ourselves and our planet from extinction. Now true, I do believe that we are being called upon today to save our planet, what I’m saying is that we don’t need the guilt or shame or despair of having been inactive up to now. As big and as urgent as saving our planet might seem, it is still just a part of the game, set up for the benefit of the individuals within it. From a higher perspective, we see that we are participating in the biggest, fullest cycle in the universe: our separation from and return to the Dao. And it looks like we are well on our way. We are sitting somewhere on a timeline of eternity. Does it really matter where we are on this line, at some point between the beginning and the end? From this perspective, there is nothing ‘wrong’ in the world now. The world is perfect just the way it is. There is nothing we should do. There is nothing we have to do. We can do as we desire. We are free to choose. This is the way it has always been. This is only just now dawning on us, as we enter a new level of consciousness.

Life is what we make it. Literally. We give meaning to it, we are capable of shaping it with our own vision. At the same time, our lives have a common thread. We have all come here to explore our darkness and bring our light to it. That is the process of expanding consciousness. Our darkness is our karma, the mechanism by which our path in life is drawn up. We take on our darkness one small piece at a time, as we become ready for it. Each time we shine our light intensely on that piece of darkness it crumbles and evaporates. We are reminded over and over again that this darkness is not real. Each time we do this we get an ever-clearer glimpse of who we really are.

But how we get there is up to us. There are an infinite number of ways to play. If we see life as a race, our darkness is the obstacle we have to move around and through. If life is a play, the darkness of our character is the basis for the drama. If life is a classroom, our darkness is our ignorance of what we need to learn. It’s why we play all these games in life, because we know deep down inside of ourselves that life literally is such a game, the grandest game, and all these other things that we invent and play help us to engage fully in our lives.

Do you get a thrill from climbing to the top of a large mountain? Then let your life be that climb. Do you get the highest satisfaction in honing a great talent, like becoming a revered painter or talented musician? Then let life be this path of mastery. Is your fulfillment found in nurturing and teaching the young, so that they may enjoy the greatest fruits the world has to offer? Then let your life be the unfolding of your love. We have chosen this life. We come here for entertainment, adventure, the unique experience of being alive in human form. Let your life be a celebration of that!

Move on to Chapter 26…

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Consciousness

New Moon In Taurus: Steady & Serene

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

We are having a New Moon in Taurus on May 11th in most of the world and in the morning hours of the 12th everywhere east of the Middle East. This is initiating a 29.5 day lunar cycle and new wave of energy for the coming month; however, the astrological configurations mentioned throughout this article will be more prominent over the following two weeks.

We are approaching eclipse season as we are having Total Lunar Eclipse in Sagittarius in this same Lunar Cycle, a few weeks after this New Moon. This will be followed by a Solar Eclipse in Gemini on June 10th. Eclipses can reflect shifts and evolutionary developments pertaining to the sign it is in and in the specific areas of our lives based on our individual astrological blueprints.

The effects of eclipses don’t always fully play out when they are occurring although you may experience things connected to them on these dates or in the weeks before and after. In this case Mercury will also be going retrograde in Gemini at the end of May which is the same sign as one of the eclipses. This can also highlight significant adjustments and shifts pertaining to Gemini energy playing out in the period between late May to mid-July. I will be writing separate articles on these Eclipses and Mercury Retrograde, you can join my mailing list here to ensure that you receive them.

New Moon In Taurus

Although Taurus season began on April 19th/20th, this New Moon emphasizes its energy even more so. Ruled by Venus, it is associated with values, sensuality, beauty, worth, money, possessions, food, and pleasures of life. As an Earth sign, it is practical, realistic, and very much invested in the physical world.

Taurus is one of four fixed signs with the others being Leo, Scorpio, and Aquarius, which are all the middle signs of each quarterly season. However, being an Earth Fixed sign, it is as fixed as it gets. It is slow, steady, solid, grounded, routine oriented, and thorough.

Taurus is also associated with nature and it is very fitting and reflective for Earth Day to occur during this time. It is the second sign of the zodiac and therefore is more self-oriented as is all the earlier signs. Negatively, Taurus can be too rigid, lazy, habitual, overly self-indulgent, greedy, possessive, stubborn, materialistic, and very slow.

New Moon Sextile Neptune, Trine Pluto, & Square Jupiter

This New Moon is in a tight sextile with Neptune in Pisces. Although this isn’t a very strong type of aspect, this brings an energy that can be spiritual, compassionate, creative, and soothing. It can trigger intuition and inspiration. With the Taurus influence, it can be a ‘chilled out’ combination. This energy will be more present from the New Moon until May 13th.

The New Moon is also in a trine with Pluto in Capricorn which will be strongest on May 16th/17th. We may feel more determined, strategic, or resourceful. Some people may feel empowered or experience financial benefits. This can also be good for uncovering things, making positive changes, and emphasizing what’s important and real.

The furthest applying aspect to this New Moon is a square with Jupiter which will be strongest from May 19th-21st (and somewhat on the 22nd in the countries furthest East). Although this can feel expansive, we can more easily overextend ourselves, get scattered, have blind spots, and be excessive. However if we stay focused and cautious, this energy can be great for learning and education.

Mars Sextile Uranus & Square Chiron, Mercury Trine Saturn

Mars in Cancer is in a very tight sextile with Uranus and square with Chiron at the time of this New Moon. This can be good for applying ourselves in a new, unusual, experimental, stimulating, progressive, technological, rebellious, healing, or liberating way. Issues or conflicts around blockages, wounds, negative patterns, anger, sexuality, or holism can come up.

On May 12th/13th, Mercury in Gemini will be in an exact trine with Saturn in Aquarius. This is good for practical, disciplined, and realistic thinking. Discussions or thoughts may involve long term goals, commitments, or what we are building towards. This can also reflect putting things or structures in place that involve communication or delivery of information.

Jupiter Going Into Pisces, Mercury Entering Pre-Retrograde Shadow Period

Jupiter had recently gone into Aquarius in December and has been quickly making its way towards entering Pisces on May 13th/14th. It later returns to Aquarius this summer after it goes retrograde, and then re-enters Pisces late December of this year. We are going to be getting a taste of Jupiter in Pisces until July 28th, yet will still be somewhat of a mix of Pisces/Aquarius until the end of the year.

Jupiter is the planet of expansion, growth, learning, beliefs, exploration, travel, abundance and therefore it will affect Piscean areas and qualities in those ways. Pisces is associated with spirituality, mysticism, retreats, compassion, energy healing, psychedelics, dreams, creativity, divine inspiration, imagination, idealism, and psychic abilities. It is also associated with escapism, intoxication, delusion, disease, and lack of boundaries. Jupiter can have an excessive effect as well when it comes to these Piscean expressions.

Pisces is one of Jupiter’s homes as it is the traditional ruler of this sign. It gets to express itself in ways that it wants to and is more free and limitless in the eternal sign of Pisces. Since late 2019 Jupiter has been in Saturn ruled signs with Saturn also present which has been very restricting for a boundless planet.

This will be a big shift for Jupiter, but keep in mind that this is a just taste. It will still be returning to Aquarius which is traditionally Saturn ruled with Saturn also present there. From now until the end of the year it will be like Jupiter is having one foot in each sign, however, once it re-enters Pisces in late December, it will be more free from the restrictive Saturnian domain.

Mercury is going retrograde at the end of the month and will be entering its pre-retrograde shadow phase on May 14th/15th. It entered Gemini, the sign it will be retrograde in, on May 4th/5th. Some of the things that have been coming up recently, and especially after mid-May, will contribute to a process of adjustments and shifts that will occur in June and July.

As we get closer towards the end of May, Mercury will be slowing down and the complications that Mercury retrograde is known for can occur before it actually changes motion. I will be writing a separate article on this, join my mailing list here to ensure that you receive it.

Taurus Ruler Venus Conjunct North Node, Sextile Chiron, & Trine Saturn

Venus, the ruler of Taurus, is moving towards a conjunction with the Lunar North Node in Gemini and a sextile with Chiron which will be exact from May 17th-18th. New relations, or developments around past relations, could have a fated quality that can bring growth and help us to move forward in a better or constructive way.

Our perception or approach to Venus ruled areas, such as relationships, values, finances, art, may evolve in a helpful manner. It can also reflect healing, expressions of wholeness, bridging, integration, or solutions around Venus areas or connected to communication with others.

Following this aspect, Venus will then be in a trine with Saturn which is exact on May 19th/20th, but may be felt in the days prior as well. This can reflect commitments, practical approaches, discipline, structure, constructive efforts,  or some sort of stabilization pertaining to friends, lovers, financial matters, artistic endeavours, or things that are aesthetically related.

Making Intentions & Things To Consider

Is there anything that you are currently doing that requires you to be more practical or thorough? Do you need to incorporate some sort of routine or structure? Are there aspects of your diet that you need to change? Is there anything that you’d like to experiment or take new approaches with? How can you be more proactive when it comes to healing or addressing personal blockages? How can you make your life more beautiful? Are you spending enough time in nature? What ways do you feel are best for you to grow spiritually?

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 7:00pm Universal Time on May 11th. You can click here to see what that is in your time zone.

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Gain more astrological insight into what is going on in your life and have a better understanding of your individual potentials. Get a personalized astrology reading with Carmen (author of this article) specific to you based on your exact birth date, time, and location. I’m currently doing a DISCOUNT with 20-30% off.  Click here for more information or to order.

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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Consciousness

Super Moon In Scorpio: Realism & Depth

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

We are having a Full Moon in Scorpio on April 26th/27th, which will appear the brightest on the night of the 26th for the majority of the world and on the night of the 27th in the countries furthest East. This is the peak of the Lunar cycle that began with a New Moon in Aries on April 11th/12th. It will also be a ‘Supermoon’, which is when the Moon appears larger and brighter due to its closer proximity to the Earth.

The energies of a Full Moon are strongest in the days surrounding it yet its astrological configurations also play a part over the following two weeks. You may start to see its themes slowly build up after the New Moon prior.

They are a period in which we feel a push-pull between two opposing signs, in this case being the Moon in Scorpio and the Sun in Taurus. It can play out as either a conflict, an integration, or some sort of dynamic between the energies of both signs. The Moon reflects the expression of feeling and emotion while the Sun reflects the expression of ego and conscious self.

We may feel this opposition happening individually within us and/or we can also experience it play out around us with some people (or circumstances) expressing the Scorpio side and others expressing the Taurus side. In some cases, Full Moons can also reflect/trigger some sort of change or release.

Sun In Taurus Opposite Moon In Scorpio

Taurus season began on April 19th/20th and will last until May 20th/21st. It is about practicality, thoroughness, pleasures, food, possessions, beauty, and nature. It is a sensual, tangible, and grounded energy. As a ‘Fixed Earth’ sign, it is like a rock, and is the most invested in the physical/material world in comparison to the rest of the signs. It can also be slow, rigid, habitual, and lazy.

This Full Moon is in its opposite sign of Scorpio, triggering a push-pull or integration effect between both of these signs. Scorpio energy is deep, complex, investigative, passionate, intuitive, driven, powerful, calculated, observant, primal, purging, regenerating, transformational, mysterious, intense, desiring, and sexual. It is associated with fears, shadows, death, secrets, hidden matters, conspiracies, and the extremes of Love and Hate. Scorpio energy can also be controlling, obsessive, jealous, aggressive, savage, vengeful, and manipulative.

While Taurus is more concerned about what is tangible, pleasant, and what’s on the surface, Scorpio likes to dive deep even if it gets ugly, scary, or uncomfortable. Both signs are associated with money, resources, values, and worth; with Taurus’ expression of these things being more ‘self-oriented’ and Scorpio being more ‘relationship/shared oriented.’ Scorpio is associated with taxes, debt, credit, investments, inheritance, which all include more then one party to be involved. Both signs also share qualities of being loyal, stubborn, and possessive.

Pluto Is Stationary, Going Retrograde Shortly After Full Moon

Pluto is going retrograde less than 12 hours following the peak of this Full Moon. It is nearly stopped in the sky (from our geocentric perspective) which is referred to as being ‘stationary’, as it transitions from moving forward to backward. Whenever a planet is in the process of changing motion, its energies become very strong and concentrated. This has been building up in the weeks prior to this Full Moon and will wane in the weeks following.

Some astrologers observe Pluto as the ruler of Scorpio and I personally view it as a sub-ruler or representative of Scorpio energy. Therefore having it stationary at this time amplifies the themes of that sign, mentioned in the above section. This can also be a time of changes pertaining to these themes or perhaps to do with power dynamics, control, hidden matters, obsessions, or things involving sexuality.

Pluto also rules fears, viruses, psychoanalysis, and shadows. The combination of this Scorpio Full Moon combined with Pluto stationary retrograde can be good for initiating a process of deep inner healing, purging, release, or transformation.

Full Moon Part of a T-Square With Saturn, Uranus, Venus, and Mercury

In February, Saturn in Aquarius and Uranus in Taurus made their first of three exact squares with each other, which will be followed by another in June and the final one in December. However, this energy will be an important part of the astrological backdrop throughout all of 2021 and somewhat in 2022 as they will still be close.

This Full Moon will be triggering this aspect as the Sun will be close to Uranus and this along with the Moon will be in a T-square with Saturn. Saturn themes of restrictions, limitations, tradition, caution, contraction, structure, responsibilities, delays, seriousness, are at odds with Uranus themes of freedom, surprises, progressiveness, rebellion, innovation, science, technology, and metaphysics.

Mercury and Venus are also in Taurus ahead of the Sun in which the Moon will also be opposing and tying in all of these planets together. This configuration can play out as struggles, complications, or restrictions between emotional needs, social life, relationship dynamics, sexual matters, communication, shared values, financial matters, and other ways as well. However, with Saturn serving as the apex of this t-square it could also point to a solution that involves responsibility, discipline, structure, caution, or implementing boundaries.

Things To Consider

Are there any aspects of your life calling for transformation? What do you need to purge? Do you feel like you need to do some shadow work or psychoanalysis? What makes you fearful and why? In what ways do you need to be more responsible, disciplined, structured or cautious? Do you have any attachments or habits getting in the way of feeling free or being your best self? Do you have any financial matters that need to be addressed?

Scorpio Full Moons, and the weeks following during the waning moon, are a great time to initiate different types of cleansing. It can be cleansing of the physical body, clearing/overcoming negative patterns or habits, or purging aspects of our external environment. Scorpio is associated with the colon, excretory system, and reproductive areas of the body, so it can also be good to approach healing modalities connected to those areas.

These are just some examples of themes that could come up or ways to approach this period; however, there may be other variations of this energy playing out as well.  If you wish to do any sort of intentional release, it is best to do so after it begins to wane following the peak or during the two weeks afterwards when it is waning before the next New Moon. The exact peak of this Full Moon is at 3:32am Universal Time on April 27th which is the night of the 26th in much of the world. You can click here to see what that is in your time zone.

Follow me on INSTAGRAM, FACEBOOK, and YOUTUBE for more astrology-related content.

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Gain more astrological insight into what is going on in your life and have a better understanding of your individual potentials. Get a personalized astrology reading with Carmen (author of this article) specific to you based on your exact birth date, time, and location. I’m currently doing a DISCOUNT with 20-30% off.  Click here for more information or to order.

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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Consciousness

A New Media Approach For Improved Sense-Making Through Physiological Coherence

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CE Staff Writer 8 minute read

Before you begin...

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Take a moment and breathe. Place your hand over your chest area, near your heart. Breathe slowly into the area for about a minute, focusing on a sense of ease entering your mind and body. Click here to learn why we suggest this.

The simple exercise you were just introduced to is designed to help create a physiological heart brain connection that has been shown to improve memory, learning, problem-solving and discernment.

Since 2009, Collective Evolution has been committed to forging a radically new approach to media and the discussion of current events. Over the years scientific research has come to support the approach we have been taking to help improve the way people consume and synthesize information in order to make meaningful choices in their lives and in society.

Since part of our mission at CE is to observe what is happening in our world from a more neutral point of view, asking what about us and our current human story creates our world, society, ideas, day to day choices, and policies to be the way they are, it was important to us to develop a style that encourages people to be in a state of mind and being where they’re more open to exploring new ideas without bias, cognitive distortions, and immediate resistance.

This discussion is worthy of consideration as most platforms either focus on simple ‘feel good’ or ‘well being’ based content, or focus on news from a purely journalistic sense, often with a political bias. Since our content focus is on both personal transformation and news/current events from a new approach, we have chosen to actually measure whether or not people are having a more positive experience consuming current event information. A recent research survey that will be publicized in March 2021 will show the positive results of CEs approach on audiences well being, emotional state, and development of critical thinking over the 12 years CE has been doing this work.

Coherence & Optimal Function

Decades of research shows that our hearts send more information to our brains than our brains send to our hearts. When our body’s heart is beating in what is called an ‘incoherent rhythm’, it sends a message to our brains and nervous system that produces suboptimal function that leads to a reduction in our ability to learn, make effective decisions, problem-solve, critically think, and self regulate our emotions.

When our heart is beating in a coherent rhythm, it sends coherent signals to the brain and nervous system that then brings each of these systems into synchronization physiologically. The result is opposite of that of incoherent signals. Research shows an improvement in our ability to think clearly, navigate information, make decisions, remember things, and communicate. All of this can come from as little as 60 – 90 seconds of practices like the one we place at the top of each of our articles. Over time, these practices also helps to build self-awareness which helps us see our own bias’ more clearly.

Further research has shown that a connection between thoughtful breathing and the production of a compound in the cerebrum called noradrenaline. This compound goes about as a “mind compost” that is delivered when we are feeling tested, inquisitive, or centered.

Our Unique & Research Backed Style

At CE we have found that the pathway to meaningful and sustainable change in our lives and society comes from being able to self-regulate our emotions, understand and change our habits and patterns, and also from learning how to navigate information in our world in such a way that allows us to carry our personal transformation into the realm of societal change.

In other words, sometimes people can have a spiritual practice or work on personal transformation, but don’t often apply their transformation to questioning or re-imagining things like current events, society, or politics. We are at a critical time in humanity’s history where faith in existing institutions is deteriorating rapidly, typically based on a right intuition people have that these institutions don’t work in their favor. We must begin exploring why our world is in need of change, and at the same time be able to shift our consciousness and thinking enough that we can make societal changes from a new way of thinking and being.

In 2009, we chose to focus our journalistic, video and education content in alignment with these findings. Focusing on a sense of ease, curiosity, and playfulness in our style. We don’t intend on trying to convince people to believe what we are reporting on, instead we encourage them to openly explore and question. This has had a dramatic affect on how people feel when consuming our content, and how they understand what we’re producing.

Commonly reported feedback from our audience includes things like feeling more grounded, hopeful, inspired, clear, and empowered to take action in their personal lives and society. Our readers also report that they tend not to feel a notion of ‘us vs. them’ and division that often occurs when consuming media about current events. Interestingly, readers have also commonly reported that after repeated consumption of our articles, videos, podcasts or courses, they notice a stark difference in how they feel when they consume content from more traditional alternative or mainstream media. This was also a huge discovery for us as it suggests that people’s relationship with other forms of alternative media can bring them new information but does not necessarily help their well being and sense of inspiration to act.

To us, all these suggest that our style not only informs but helps to create a noticeable shift in our audiences state of being. We don’t feel that it is us doing this for our reader, we feel the style and platform invites the reader to, by nature, build their self-awareness, practice emotional regulation, and think more clearly. Imagine how this will ripple out into the world as a result. Imagine how different conversations would be about current events if more had access to this approach.

Controversial Topics & Meaningful Change

At CE, we sometimes cover ‘controversial’ topics that as a society we are often resistant to explore, whether we have a spiritual practice or not. Many of our colleagues and friends in the personal transformation space have chosen not to explore some of these subjects much as they don’t quite align with their brand messaging or line of work, we respect and agree with their choices. However, we saw this as an important challenge to take on in our work as these ‘tough’ conversations need to be had, and we believe they can be done in a way that inspires change and well being.

Culture today is often uncomfortable with uncertainty and thus open inquiry and examination of new evidence has shut off around certain subjects. In our minds, this is causing a very societally impactful sense-making crisis in which we have become divided, distressed, emotional, and unclear as to what is actually going on around us. With this, we are quick to react and are often living on edge. As research shows, when we make decisions within our lives and society based on this state of being, they are often ineffective, suboptimal, and create further disharmony.

Our research has shown that 63% of our audience feels that CE helps them explore tough or controversial subjects while feeling less emotionally charged when compared to when others report on it, whether it’s a mainstream or alternative media source. This was a very inspiring statistic for us as we feel this makes a meaningful contribution towards shifting the way media is told to bring about a better society, without being limited to only focusing on ‘good news’ which has many limitations and, we feel, does not lead to deep societal change.

In our work we have found that combining personal transformation and emotional regulation with the openness to re-imagine society and explore new ideas, even when they are controversial, has created the greater sense of empowerment, clarity and well-being amongst our readers.

In short, our work has helped to provide a path to self-awareness, practice, and the skills to tackle information openly and coherently, thus readers are not triggered by disagreements and different perspectives, and are able to synthesize information into meaningful practice, solutions, and actions steps.

We’re at a critical time for developing a greater sense of self awareness, openness, and increased critical thinking so that we can better explore information without our emotions, biases, and pre-conceived notions getting in the way and shutting down our inquiry.

At Collective Evolution we feel that the journey to creating collective change is one founded upon personal transformation, what might be called a shift in consciousness, which is to say: we must generate a greater conscious awareness of ourselves, how we function, how to regulate our emotions, and think more clearly about what is going on around us. When we make this shift, our perception about life, society and what is possible dramatically shifts, and we begin to tap into a new story about humanity and what we want to create.

With this new story, coherence, and connection to self, we have found that people are inspired to work towards creating a greater sense of harmony and coherence in their lives and society as well. Effectively being able to see how new and emerging ideas can build a new foundation for society, instead of making small adjustments to our current society that’s built on an old and outdated story.

To more fully explore our work, participate in practical courses and engage with a like minded community, consider becoming a member of CETV. Your participation not only helps to empower change in your personal life and society, but also helps support the continuation of our unique and impactful work.

Dive Deeper

Click below to watch a sneak peek of our brand new course!

Our new course is called 'Overcoming Bias & Improving Critical Thinking.' This 5 week course is instructed by Dr. Madhava Setty & Joe Martino

If you have been wanting to build your self awareness, improve your.critical thinking, become more heart centered and be more aware of bias, this is the perfect course!

Click here to check out a sneak peek and learn more.

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