At whatever pace gives us comfort and a sense of learning we are all moving along in our inner journeys.   And whatever stage you find yourself present is of less importance than the act of doing the travel as consciously as possible.  We all have our preferred methods of exploration, rituals we enact when the time is ripe and the urge is on us.

     Sometimes it appears our efforts are successful and we arrive at our chosen destination to enjoy, explore or exchange with those we meet.  We discover the huge variety of spirit residents and travelers, from dumb ghosts slunk in dusty corners, to wiseacre uncles with a beer at the barbeque, to puffed up former community leaders still leading some pack or other, to angelic beings so loving one feels like melting, to wise old souls who could pass for children, wrinkled children at that.  We are charmed, we are mystified, we are overwhelmed.

     On other occasions we set out determined and wind up derailed, going places we hadn’t planned on or asked for, dragged by some jerky leash operated by who knows what, to landscapes and communities we do not like or fit in with, and characters who are less than sympathetic or congenial, annoying little shits who seem to delight in non-sequiturs and general mystification.  These failures to launch are often accompanied by overlays of brain-produced anxieties and fears, where people we know well act strangely and surreally.  Like a few nights ago where the movie actor John Cusack was helping me out of a meat locker where I had lost my luggage after travelling from a distant city.  Needless to say I arose to urinate with a chuckle.

     Many of us have these types of experiences, and when we’re not chuckling, wonder why.  For many years I have suspected the story is this:  on our way out of the body we pass, quickly or slowly, through the lower astral, with all its messed-up spirits, dark misty negativity and malicious intent.  As newbies we can get stuck there, and frightened back into the body, with shreds of nightmarish memories.  With experience we can move quickly through onto the paradise words where souls we love and activities we can learn about are waiting.  And with confidence and empathy we may return to the lower astral where we can practice the arts of rescue and retrieval.  On our return to the body, we blend our own astral to that of our physical, and in the process picking up some of the brainwave patterns repeating themselves as they do, – anxieties, fears, plans and ambitions, not to mention memories of interactions, of both the ‘intimate’ and ‘entertainment’ variety.  This can, and often does, result in some haphazard mish-mash of contacts and fantasies that serve only to confuse and amuse over the breakfast table.  From my own life I could give many surreal examples.

     Not so, of course, when I am inner directed to contact specific souls, often recently passed, for the kind of trans-dimensional communication or wide ranging exploration I have become known for. Is it then a matter of determination and willpower?  Well, more or less.  One can still be sloppy with one’s willpower, which results in the astral body, being the one of emotion and desire, being magnetically drawn to the unresolved vibrations animating its current incarnation, – issues like vanity, pride, lack of love, low self-esteem, frustrated expression of sexuality, and so on.  On other occasions I have noticed people’s higher selves and guides taking on a fairly insistent leadership position, ramping up the adventure quotient in the process, leaving the perhaps timid soul puzzled and amazed.    But however it manifests, the unpacking of the mysteries goes on regardless, usually leaving behind more questions than it answers.  Which, of course, keeps us curious.