ALETHEIA LUNA: “Soul Communication: 7 Ways Your True Self is Trying to Guide You”

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Shamans, medicine people, mystics and sages throughout the ages have always known that the soul doesn’t speak the human language.

Instead, our souls communicate with us through symbols, metaphors, archetypes, poetry, deep feelings and magic. The human language is far too limiting to express the full spectrum of profound knowledge, insight and revelation that the soul has to share.

As such, most of us were never taught to tune into the dancing rhythms of our deepest selves. Instead, due to our social conditioning we have come to heavily rely on the mind only and its interpretation of reality. Unfortunately, our emphasis on hard data, facts and linear logic has left a gaping hole inside of us. We fill this empty hole with consumerism, addictions, violence and endless distractions.

Sometimes, a traumatic or extreme event in our lives shakes us out of our habitual way of perceiving existence. But usually, most of us tend to miss the big, glaring daily signs that the soul within us is trying to communicate with us. Not only that, but we tend to actively mistrust, ignore or doubt any sacred form of communication that we receive.

How can we begin to tune into the subtle voice of the soul and rewire our conditioned brains? How can we listen to our soul’s vital messages and nourish ourselves with its life-changing wisdom?

Soul Communication: 7 Important Signs to Look Out For

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Soul communication isn’t just reserved for medicine men or women, or enlightened people; it is a birth right of every man, woman and child. It is a vital part of soulwork.

For years I lived without the guidance of my soul, actively ignoring it or numbing myself out from its voice. Since reconnecting with my soul, I have discovered that it offers endless gifts, insights, teachings and direction that helps me to connect with my innate wholeness and life purpose.

Observing the people in our society, I’m saddened to see how soulfully emaciated we are. I can immediately tell whether a person has gotten in touch with their soul or not by the lustre in their skin, the glow in their eyes and the type of energy they transmit. Unfortunately, most people are shells of what they could truly become. It’s almost like we are living our lives grabbing at whatever source of warmth we can scavenge, when in truth, we are the fire and warmth we’re seeking for.

If you’d like to learn soul communication, you must first pay attention to the signs that your soul is whispering. There are many types of signs out there, but below I have compiled some of the main ones you should look out for:

1. Dream signs

In the West, psychologists believe that dreams are the unconscious mind’s way of making sense of reality. But in ancient cultures, such as in Egypt and Greece, dreams were messages from the spirits, gods, or divine realm. Many indigenous cultures have also used dreams as a gateway to higher consciousness and revelation (e.g. native Americans).

These days, most healers agree that dreams express important messages and truths about our lives and destinies. In my experience, dreams can serve as doorways to new insight, reflections of true inner feelings, and even portals to interacting with spirit guides.

Pay attention to your dreams and the images, symbols and scenarios within them. What stands out to you? You might like to keep a dream journal and record your immediate impressions. Please note that dream dictionaries can sometimes help you out, but they rarely convey the true message your dream is trying to transmit to you. Why? Dreams and the archetypes/symbology within them are highly contextual and personal. A snake, for instance, could be a positive sign for one person, and a negative sign for another.

2. Lucid dreams

Spontaneous lucid dreams involve suddenly becoming aware that you’re dreaming while asleep. Becoming conscious within your dream world is not only spiritually symbolic (literally of “waking up”), but it is also an opportunity to explore the hidden realm of your unconscious mind. This opportunity from your soul is rare, or it could be constant without any effort on your behalf.

Regardless, it is possible to actively practice lucid dreaming. You might like to learn more about lucid dreaming here.

If you’re in the habit of having spontaneous lucid dreams, treat it as a sacred gift. Very few people have access to the depths of the unconscious realms. Treat this as an opportunity to ask yourself questions and find direction that you wouldn’t be able to otherwise access in waking life.

3. Repetitive words or numbers

How many times have you looked at the clock and seen “11:11,” “12:12,” “13:13”? Many skeptics say that putting importance into repetitive words and numbers is a reflection of something called “confirmation bias,” but I personally don’t believe this is the case. It’s easy to be cynical and use the left-brained approach, but much harder to explore the personal meaning of these experiences.

Regardless of the meaning we assign to repetitive words and numbers, the function of them is to momentarily “wake us up.” Otherwise, why would we give them so much significance? Whenever I see a repeated number or hear a name/word said constantly, I take it as a sign of soul communication.

So whenever you have a picture, word or number repeated, ask yourself, what is the hidden message?

4. Animal omens and guides

Most of us come across animals every day. When you pay attention to these different animals, you realize that each one has a specific teaching, message or energy type.

However, it’s important to keep in mind that the meaning you assign to different animals is highly personal and not necessarily the “orthodox” meaning already established out there. So don’t feel the need to go by the “textbook” definition. Go with your gut.

One way of discovering your own unique meanings is to observe what animals you constantly come across every day. Watch them and try to understand what their teaching is. What are they revealing? How do they behave, move or sound? This is a powerful form of soul communication.

For example, you might constantly come across crows. Watching these crows, you might realize that they are always very loud and agitated. The message you might assign to these animal messengers could be that you need to pay more attention to the emotions you have suppressed so that they can be released.

5. Synchronicity or serendipity

Have you ever had a string of events happen in a way that seemed special or out of the ordinary? You might refer to these events as “serendipity” when in fact they may have been something known as “synchronicity.

What is synchronicity? Synchronicities are moments of meaningful coincidence, where our inner and outer worlds align. Often synchronicity is a good way to tell that you are on the right soul path because everything feels as though it is unfolding without your conscious effort. You might even have the sensation that Life/God is playing an active hand in making your dreams or aspirations come true.

It is my personal belief that nothing happens by chance, and coincidence is an illusion. I believe, at a core soul and spirit level, everything is interconnected. Science attests to the fact that everything is energy. So what is synchronicity? In my mind it is when the vibration of our thoughts matches with the vibration of our personal destinies. Picture a funnel of water: you don’t need to force the water to go through, the water goes through effortlessly.

So watch out for moments of synchronicity — they are powerful reflections that you’re on the right path.

6. Gut feelings

A gut feeling is an unexplainable sensation that tells you to do (or not do) something. Another synonym for this phrase is the word intuition. We all know what intuition is, but most of us have trouble listening to it.

Intuition is different from the inner voice of fear because it is subtle, calm and centered, as opposed to being frantic or aggressive. This is a very important distinction to make. Many people believe they are being guided by intuition when in fact they are being guided by their fearful inner talk.

Intuition, or gut feelings, can be thought of as the voice of our souls communicating to us. Whenever you feel drawn towards something or someone (without a fearful motive), you can be sure that this is your soul trying to guide you.

7. Visions during meditation

Meditation is another way to contact your soul. That calm, spacious, infinitely loving space you have entered before (even for just for a few seconds)? That is your soul space.

Meditating for long periods of time (30 minutes or more) is a powerful way to experience what has been referred to as the mystical experience. One common mystical experience involves tuning into visions or spontaneous names while you’re meditating. These visions or names might be of your current spirit guide, or could directly be a message from your soul.

I’ve even had people tell me that they’ve received unknown songs or melodies during meditation. Personally, I have experienced spontaneous visions and words.

But how can you tell apart normal mental chatter from visions, names or songs from your soul? Typically, the images you see or words you hear will have a specific theme that seems foreign (e.g. it could be from an ancient culture), and they will be very repetitive. You will also have the sensation that somehow they are important for you to pay attention to.

I recommend keeping a meditation journal to record these visions, images, words or songs. This will help you to better articulate what your soul is trying to express.

How to Speak to Your Soul

There are many ways for you to actively communicate with your soul, but that is for another article. In the mean time, I recommend simply saying a daily prayer.

Here is an example you could use, or build on yourself:

“Dear soul, I love you. Thank you for supporting my life. I’m so honored and appreciative of your presence. If you have any messages for me, please communicate them to me. I am open and receptive. I welcome your guidance.”

See how you go with this prayer and ensure that you pay attention to any emotional, physical or mental sensations that arise.

I hope that you’re now more aware of the deep craving of your soul to make itself known to you. Deep down, we all crave for oneness and wholeness. By learning the language of your soul, you can open a sacred doorway into the world of reclaimed strength, beauty, love and innocence.

Any thoughts or questions, share them below.

 

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JANE MEGGITT: “7 Ways Dolphins Are Smarter Than Humans”

7 Ways Dolphins Are Smarter Than Humans

When it comes to animal intelligence, dolphins are near the top of the brain chain. The species is generally considered the second most intelligent species after us, with chimps coming in third. In certain ways, dolphin intelligence surpasses that of people. The brains of certain dolphin species, such as the bottlenose, are larger than human brains.

Keep in mind that dolphins are not domestic animals, although individuals have been domesticated. Their ability to think, plan and perceive developed outside of the human experience, unlike smart domestic creatures such as dogs. Dolphins were never bred for specific attributes — they have evolved without human interference.

1. Language system

Dolphins communicate with each other through an intricate language system. It consists of behaviors, such as physical contact to make a particular point. Like people, they use gestures to express feelings and reactions. They make an array of noises that make sense to other dolphins. Each dolphin possesses a “signature whistle,” and it’s hypothesized that whistle is the dolphin equivalent of a name. Unlike some people, dolphins appear to remember the names of fellow dolphins years after they last met.

While their language doesn’t make dolphins smarter than humans, it appears to be more universal. Thus, there isn’t a “language barrier” for dolphins living in different part of the world.

2. Echolocation

Echolocation is the location of objects through reflected sound. Humans don’t have this capability, but dolphins do, and they use it to navigate waters and find food. Researchers developed sonar and radar inspired by the echolocation abilities of dolphins and bats. For dolphins, echolocation is the primary sense, far stronger than vision.

Scientists aren’t sure exactly how dolphins echolocate. The frequency of their echolocation sounds are too high for human ears to hear. To date, no studies have succeeded in replicating this sound. One theory is that mucus on the fatty strips below their blowhole is integral in allowing dolphins to make hundreds of echolocation clicks in just seconds.

Dolphins’ echolocation system is so accurate that the United States Navy uses them in its Marine Mammal Program to find mines buried at sea.

3. Game creation

Dolphins are second only to humans in game creation, but play many of these games with other species. Dolphins and humpback whales are known to play together, with the dolphin swimming onto the whale’s nose. The whale then raises his head, and the dolphin slides down into the water. The sequence is often repeated, with both parties having “a whale of a time.”

4. Quick judgment

The dolphin brain consists of four lobes in its two hemispheres, while our brain has only three lobes. While human senses are split between lobes, all of the dolphin’s senses are located in that fourth lobe. What does that mean in terms of dolphin cognition? It may indicate dolphins are capable of making much faster decisions than we are, and reducing the complexities of a situation much faster than we are capable of doing.

5. Understanding us

We may not be able to understand dolphins when they communicate, but they can learn to understand human language. Trained dolphins are known to comprehend hundreds of words, and respond to specific gestures.

6. Acting ethically

Dolphin society is complex, but appears to have ethical components. We know that dolphins don’t declare war on each other, which makes them smarter than people in one major respect.

7. Only half asleep

Unlike humans, dolphins are never completely asleep. If they went into full sleep, they would drown, since consciousness is required to breathe. Instead, half of their brain sleeps, and the other stays alert. Technically, this is known as “unihemispheric slow-wave sleep.” During sleep, one hemisphere of the brain shuts down, and the dolphin’s opposite eye closes. The awake hemisphere monitors the environment and ensures breathing. Unlike humans, dolphins are not caught unaware because of slumber. It also means that captive dolphins can’t receive anesthesia for treatment of serious wounds or illnesses.

Human intelligence and dolphin intelligence are very different. Comparing one to the other is like comparing apples to oranges. However, dolphins can solve problems and think creatively. They display those traits in their own environment, which is not our world.

—Jane Meggitt

 

 

 

 

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JOE BATTAGLIA: “If You Want To Accelerate Brain Development In Children — Teach Them Music”

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Alternative and complementary treatments such as creative art, meditation, and yoga have been proposed to bridge many gaps that conventional medicine cannot. But music, because of its ubiquity in our society as well as its ease of transmission, has perhaps the greatest potential among alternative therapies to reach people in deep and profound ways. Music matters and it heals.

Music instruction appears to accelerate brain development in young children, particularly in the areas of the brain responsible for processing sound, language development, speech perception and reading skills, according to initial results of a five-year study by USC neuroscientists.

We now know through controlled treatment outcome studies that listening to and playing music is a potent treatment for mental health issues. 400 published scientific papers have proven the old adage that “music is medicine.”

Research demonstrates that adding music therapy to treatment improves symptoms and social functioning among schizophrenics. Further, music therapy has demonstrated efficacy as an independent treatment for reducing depression, anxiety and chronic pain.

The Brain and Creativity Institute (BCI) at USC began the five-year study in 2012 in partnership with the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association and the Heart of Los Angeles (HOLA) to examine the impact of music instruction on children’s social, emotional and cognitive development.

These initial study results, published recently in the journal Developmental Cognitive Neuroscience, provide evidence of the benefits of music education at a time when many schools around the nation have either eliminated or reduced music and arts programs. The study shows music instruction speeds up the maturation of the auditory pathway in the brain and increases its efficiency.

“We are broadly interested in the impact of music training on cognitive, socio-emotional and brain development of children,” said Assal Habibi, the study’s lead author and a senior research associate at the BCI in the USC Dornsife College of Letters, Arts and Sciences. “These results reflect that children with music training, compared with the two other comparison groups, were more accurate in processing sound.”

For this longitudinal study, the neuroscientists are monitoring brain development and behavior in a group of 37 children from underprivileged neighborhoods of Los Angeles.

Thirteen of the children, at 6 or 7 years old, began to receive music instruction through the Youth Orchestra Los Angeles program at HOLA. The community music training program was inspired by the El Sistema method, one that LA Philharmonic conductor Gustavo Dudamel had been in when he was growing up in Venezuela.


Learning the Violin

The children earn to play instruments, such as the violin, in ensembles and groups, and they practice up to seven hours a week.

The scientists are comparing the budding musicians with peers in two other groups: 11 children in a community soccer program, and 13 children who are not involved in any specific after-school programs.

The neuroscientists are using several tools to monitor changes in them as they grow: MRI to monitor changes through brain scans, EEG to track electrical activity in the brains, behavioral testing and other such techniques.

Within two years of the study, the neuroscientists found the auditory systems of children in the music program were maturing faster in them than in the other children. The fine-tuning of their auditory pathway could accelerate their development of language and reading, as well as other abilities – a potential effect which the scientists are continuing to study.

The enhanced maturity reflects an increase in neuroplasticity – a physiological change in the brain in response to its environment – in this case, exposure to music and music instruction.

“The auditory system is stimulated by music,” Habibi said. “This system is also engaged in general sound processing that is fundamental to language development, reading skills and successful communication.”


Ear to Brain

The auditory system connects our ear to our brain to process sound. When we hear something, our ears receive it in the form of vibrations that it converts into a neural signal. That signal is then sent to the brainstem, up to the thalamus at the center of the brain, and outward to its final destination, the primary auditory cortex, located near the sides of the brain.

The progress of a child’s developing auditory pathway can be measured by EEG, which tracks electrical signals, specifically those referred to as “auditory evoked potentials.”

In this study, the scientists focused on an evoked potential called P1. They tracked amplitude – the number of neurons firing – as well as latency – the speed that the signal is transmitted. Both measures infer the maturity of the brain’s auditory pathways.

As children develop, both amplitude and the latency of P1 tend to decrease. This means that that they are becoming more efficient at processing sound.

At the beginning of the study and again two years later, the children completed a task measuring their abilities to distinguish tone. As the EEG was recording their electrical signals, they listened to violin tones, piano tones and single-frequency (pure) tones played.

The children also competed a tonal and rhythm discrimination task in which they were asked to identify similar and different melodies. Twice, they heard 24 melodies in randomized order and were asked to identify which ones differed in tone and rhythm, and which were the same in tone and rhythm.

Children who were in the youth orchestra program were more accurate at detecting pitch changes in the melodies than the other two groups. All three groups were able to identify easily when the melodies were the same. However, children with music training had smaller P1 potential amplitude compared to the other children, indicating a faster rate of maturation.

“We observed a decrease in P1 amplitude and latency that was the largest in the music group compared to age-matched control groups after two years of training,” the scientists wrote. “In addition, focusing just on the (second) year data, the music group showed the smallest amplitude of P1 compared to both the control and sports group, in combination with the accelerated development of the N1 component.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

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