Last Sunday Rev. Jeff talked about intuition and he had posted on Oakland Center’s Facebook page an article about 10 things that intuitive people do differently. Recently also, I asked to God’s guidance for a project, a big project, something that I foresee can keep me busy for the rest of my life. These were cues for my mind. They told my mind to pay attention; expect spiritual guidance.
My guess is that I am surrounded by, wrapped in spiritual guidance all the time and do not notice. Since I want guidance for this big project, I set up Guidance Catchers. For instance, I use Mind Mapping. That’s a way to use pictures, shapes, and words to capture a wide array of ideas linked by lines in a diagram. A Mind Map can be very large and colorful. For instance, one of my fellow students in ministerial school talked about using sheets of butcher paper on the wall and writing on it with markers to make his mind map.
Maybe you are like me. If that mind map was on the wall of my room, I would get ideas everywhere else. I could write them down in a little pad that I keep with me and transfer them to the big butcher paper in my room. Or, I could use an application that can appear on my computer, iPad and iPhone. My mind map would be on iCloud and I could access it anywhere with any of my gadgets. I set up an application on all my devices.
I am a sketcher so I always have a sketchbook with me. Sketching is another way I stop, get still, focus, and notice. When I sketch, I drop all other concerns and feelings. It is a peace break. Recently I gave myself permission to use the sketchbook I had with me for whatever is needed. Thus it has notes from talks, little poems, sketches, and pages of visual journaling. So the sketchbook is another Guidance Catcher.
I do visual journaling because it helps access my feelings and intuition. For me, feelings and intuition are on an inner continuum. With visual journaling, I can distill my thoughts, use color, a cartoon sketch, a photograph from a magazine, or a collage and very few words. If my inner being was an Advent calendar, each visual journal entry is like a little window that I have opened. I notice that right after, the day after I do visual journaling, I get a lot of ideas related to my big project. Visual journaling is a key that opens up a flow of creative ideas.
I choose to spend time to consider the project and add to the Mind Map. For me that is often early morning. It could also be thirty minutes in a café.
Also, I deliberately take time to be still, just be still and watch my breathing. I go for a walk and sit under a big tree, or by the shore. I go visit a shrine and stay quietly for some time. I ask people what they know and listen to what they say. Previously, I would just say that I didn’t know how to do whatever it was. Now I ask many people who could know, or have good leads for me. I ask whatever question has come up, write down their answers, and I follow up on their leads. God can guide me through anyone.
Now you know some of my Guidance Catchers. Please give yourself a way to record the good ideas that come to you. God is always speaking. Join me in listening.
*Aikya Param is a licensed prayer practitioner at the Oakland Center for Spiritual Living and currently a ministerial student at the Holmes Institute of Consciousness Studies and Ministerial Training.