We will cover chapters 33, 34 and 35.
Here is a short interview with the author Claire Heartsong from The Spirit of Maat website. It does not give a year but it does not seem to be too recent. However the information is still relevant.
The Soul loves to meditate, for in contact with the Spirit lies its greatest joy.— Paramahansa Yogananda
Diane: I understand that you've had many varied experiences in your life, from mother, teacher, and artist to soundhealer and metaphysician. When did you discover you had an inclination toward the spiritual?
Claire: As a child I recognized I had a certain amount of sensitivity that most of the people around me did not have. From the time I was really small I had a sense that whenever I looked into a mirror or a reflective surface, the other me was a mask. And I had a deep desire to know who was looking through my eyes.
I was also determined to find out why I was here. I felt very homesick and longed for my ''real'' family. I also had a deep desire to find out what the service was that I'd come to render, so I could complete it and go ''home'' as I understood it. I felt uncomfortable here on the planet and I felt uncomfortable conforming. But I also had a great desire to avoid conflict. So there was this dichotomy, ambiguity, and contraction through my life that was very challenging.
I found Nature a source of great peace and consolation. There, I was able to relax and spontaneously go into meditative states without any formal training.
As a mother, the gift of having children propelled me toward the desire to wake up. When my oldest daughter was going through a typical adolescent rebellion, somehow these events became a signal of sorts for me to remember what I had agreed to before incarnating. I understood that I must develop the ability to love unconditionally.
This perception was very humbling. And I realized that within the exoteric tradition of the church I belonged to at the time, while there was prayer, the ability to still one's Self and be able to hear what God had to say in answer to those prayers was not really fostered.
I had had experiences as an artist of stilling myself and going inward during a time when I was creating a series of drawings and paintings of Jesus. I was truly desiring him to show himself to me so I could draw him as close as possible to what he really looked like. I would still myself and go inward, and would have these truly magical experiences.
I didn't know what I was doing then. But later, after watching Shirley MacLaine in her movie Out on a Limb gazing into a candle flame and having a shift in consciousness, I realized that I really did know how to meditate.
After that, I sat down and prayed that I would be able to really connect with God — with the Christ energy — and that I would be able to develop an ability to truly love unconditionally.
Immediately, within days, it was as though I had ignited the engine of a rocketship and I just began to take off. I began having extraordinary experiences of Masters and Guides coming to me; and the box in which I had previously tried to contain myself began to get very small.
Because of my church background I had some fear that lightning was going to come down and strike me, but over time I began to attract people who could see my aura and knew that I was waking up.
I also began to attract certain books and experiences, including an actual physical meeting with St. Germaine in the Tetons, right after Harmonic Convergence, which was a tremendous point that shifted my whole life. Within two years of that experience, I moved to Mt. Shasta and have been on a pretty accelerated course ever since.
So that was my basic introduction to meditation. Since then there have been many experiences with teachers whose lives have exemplified years of discipline and meditation, and I have benefited greatly by their example.
Diane: What do you see as the difference between prayer and meditation?
Claire: I think most people at one time or another, even if they proclaim themselves as atheists or agnostics, will, if their life becomes threatened in some manner, begin to ask for assistance from some greater power.
Within certain religions there is a belief that God or Creator/Source can be contacted and our lives are assisted through that intervention. Prayer is the process of asking, coupled with the belief and trust that the request or prayer will be answered. Meditation is the ability to open oneself, and to align oneself to the answers. And to receive an expanded state of consciousness that aligns one with Creator/Source.
As one begins to have increasing experiences within a meditative state, there comes a knowingness of a deep, profound connection with Creator/Source. This shift brings an internal experience of knowing that God is without and within.
Diane: So simply put, prayer is an external supplication to an external being, whereas meditation is a communion with an internal being?
Claire: Not necessarily. Prayer can also be involved in that internal process, as when a person puts forth the desire for something to manifest into their life, and then moves into a state of receptivity during meditation.
Diane: How might one utilize meditation?
Claire: I find that women and men who are service orientated spend a majority of their lives focused on giving, sometimes forgetting to receive and replenish. Meditation can serve as a way of refueling by going direct to Creator/Source and allowing that vertical ''umbilical cord,'' if you will, to download a replenishment of life-force energy and vitality.
Sometimes a person might meditate just to still the mind. This allows for a state of relaxation that facilitates stress reduction. Healing of the body can also occur when the body, mind, and soul come into alignment and wholeness.
Still others long to shift out of the chaos of life on the Earth plane and experience a state of Oneness and Unity consciousness. All of these things can be enhanced through meditation.
I think this is what Jesus was referring to when he said, ''Peace be still and know that I AM God.''
Diane: What are the added benefits of meditation?
Claire: I think that as one begins to spend more time in those states of Unity consciousness there comes an increased desire to serve Life.
Because of the building of increased sensitivity and the activation of certain powers that can arise, there may come a time when one must choose whether to serve Self or others. It can become rather glamorous if, for instance, the power to bi-locate begins to appear, or the ability to manifest or precipitate one's desires. Then the question must be asked of oneself, ''Do I continue to develop these abilities to impress others and bring aggrandizement to myself, or am I going to serve Life with these gifts?''
We then have the opportunity to address what we call the Shadow aspect of the Self, and then to bring Light, love and forgiveness into those disempowered states of consciousness.
These are some of the powerful intentions one can have for meditation. Your intention depends on your goals for personal development.
Diane: Can anyone meditate?
Claire: Yes. I believe it is our birthright. Anyone can go through the empowerment that can be realized by meditation if one chooses. Even if it is just for stress reduction, that's a huge benefit in itself.
Diane: If someone has difficulty sitting still, are there things people can do that would be active and still be considered meditation?
Claire: Yes. It is not necessary for a person to simply sit and be still. There are a variety of different ways that you can meditate — through walking, or some of the martial arts such as Tai Chi or Qi Gong. Walking in Nature or simply being aware of our mental state as we are slipping into sleep also are forms of meditation.
Diane: What about using visualizations? Do we have to be able to visualize?
Claire: Visualization works very well to achieve a meditative state, but utilizing other senses is also effective. When someone comes to me who does not easily visualize, I recommend sensing or feeling a color, shape or form, or even endeavoring to hear a certain sound or color.
The main idea is to guide your brain out of the awake state that we normally operate in.
What I have found is that there are four ingredients to meditation that seem to be very much interconnected and are used simultaneously.
Engaging our imagination is helpful. We can imagine a color or that we are inside a sacred geometry form such as a cube or a dodecahedron, for instance. We can travel through specific terrains of consciousness, visiting guides or spirit animals as you would through shamanic journeying.
Another tool that can assist us in achieving a meditative state is the use of sound, vocalized either externally or internally. Hindu Yogis and Tibetan Buddhists use chants or mantras to focus energy and assist in creating deep states of meditation or altered awareness. Shamans use a repetitive drum beat. All of these things assist the brain to let go a bit and to relax. I might mention that you don't have to externalize a sound in order for it to be very, very powerful. Toning inside your mind can serve the same purpose.
Another aspect of meditation would be the incorporation of what are called ''mudras'', which are various positionings of the body, particularly the fingers. In ancient times the Masters developed an awareness of the body's electro-magnetic circuits in the body, which are called meridians or nadis. The practice of touching various points on the body or holding the hands in certain configurations assisted energy that might have been blocked to begin to move. This further enhanced their ability to go into altered states of consciousness.
Diane: What might be a beginning step for someone who is interested in learning to meditate?
Claire: When a person is beginning to develop skills with meditation, simply becoming aware of the inhalation and exhalation of the breath is helpful. Then becoming aware of the space between breaths would follow. That little gap is said to be the open door to God-consciousness, so as you put more and more attention on this space you can begin to increase the feeling of expansion and deep, profound peace.
When we begin to shift into slower brainwave states, the heartbeat and the breath also become slower. Eventually, we can have experiences of becoming ''breath-less.'' You may feel no longer dependent on oxygen, but rather feel nourished by pure Life Force energy — prana. You may experience breathing in a very different way, perhaps through your heart chakra or crown chakra. When the body requires oxygen, it will automatically breathe as needed; however, that state of ''breath-less-ness'' can last for hours.
Diane: Thanks, Claire!
Claire Heartsong, MA, has intimately served the Ascended Master realms for fifteen years. She is a Hathor sound healer and emissary, Reiki master, SahuKa: The Immortal Body of Light teacher, and a workshop, ceremonial, and sacred sites pilgrimage facilitator. She also carries the sacred pipe, and was trained as a professional artist/art teacher. Claire had a physical encounter with St. Germain in the Tetons in 1987, which led to numerous and profoundly transformational initiations preparing her to be of service. She co-authored St. Germain: Twin-Souls & Soulmates (Triad Publishers). She is the mother of four daughters and five grandchildren, a lover of Nature, and a student of Life.
Claire is presently completing a twelve-year project of writing the first of a series of books. In this material, Anna, the Mother of Mary and the Grandmother of Jesus, is telling her story about the path of the initiate and the personal lives of those who played key roles in the Christ Drama. Anna has announced that it is time for her work to be taken out in the form of seminars and sacred pilgrimages. Claire has prepared during many lifetimes for her present work with Anna. She communes with Anna through their shared monadic I AM Presence, and in Oneness gives Anna a focus through which her ascended presence, catalytic words, healing voice, compassionate heart, and transcendent wisdom can express.
Claire conducts retreats and trainings and says that she tries to do them ''in very beautiful, meditative places in Nature.'' For example, coming up September 5 – 9, she will be co-facilitating a women's ''Love Your Body'' retreat in Mt. Shasta, which will utilize sound, dance, mask-making, and body art, plus forms of moving meditation to facilitate self-healing, self-love, and renewal. ''We're even going to a hot springs for baths and massage,'' Claire says, ''which I'm really looking forward to!''
To contact Claire Heartsong, visit her website.
www.kheper.auz.com/topics/chakras/nadis.html for more information.