My dear friend Jenn passed away on Tuesday, very peacefully, surrounded by family and friends. I was honored to be there with her, and I could feel, very powerfully, the energies of her guides as they helped her cross to the other side.
There is much more that I could say, but the feelings are still too fresh and raw. I do want to share a useful tool with you, though.
I was talking with a friend today, one who knew Jenn and is part of her community too. We were sharing how we, as empaths, seemed to be dealing not only with our own grief, but also that of those around us. We’re in a vulnerable space, very open-hearted, and a lot of intense energies are swirling around. She said, “I feel like normally a lot of those energies pass by or through me, but right now more of them seem to get caught and don’t go away as easily.” It sounded to me like her filters were getting clogged up.
This reminded me of a meditation I use to clean my own energy filters. I wrote about it in Cultivating Self-Love. I promised to send it to her, and thanked her for reminding me of it, as I can sure use it right now, too. When I looked up the meditation, I decided to share the whole section here because I figured there would be others who would find it helpful.
“Are you an empath? If you’ve been one throughout your life, you’ll probably know it by this description. You’re sensitive to the energies around you. You know how others are feeling, whether or not they say a word. Often the strong emotions in the room are so palpable to you that you think they are your own; it can be challenging to tell the difference. You are especially affected by the suffering of children and animals. You don’t enjoy movies or TV programs that depict pain and gore (you know, those emergency room shows that so many people seem to love?); it’s just too overwhelming. You cry easily.
“Whether or not you’re a natural empath, delving deep into inner work can make you more sensitive to the energies around you. This can be challenging to deal with sometimes, but it’s not a bad thing. When you’re open to the flow of love, you’re filled with compassion for your fellow beings. This can enhance your relationships, fuel your creative projects, and inspire you to offer help and unconditional love to others.
“As an empath, or one who is open to the energies of your fellow beings, there are tools you’ll need to navigate your everyday life. The idea is not to close yourself off from the energies around you, but rather to manage how you experience them. It’s good to be able to discern your own boundaries; to know the difference between your own emotions and those of another. Setting up an energy filter is a useful way to do this. It can be easily created using meditation and visualization.
“Sit quietly and relax. Close your eyes. Put yourself in a meditative state, in whatever way works best for you. Now imagine a tiny golden ball in the area of your solar plexus. It is made of energy, and looks like molten glowing honey. Breathe into the ball and gradually allow it to expand. With each breath, the ball of glowing gold gets bigger and bigger. You can begin to see that it has tiny openings, like the screen on a window. Continue to breathe into your golden filter until it expands around you. It will conform to the shape of your body. Expand it until it sits about 9 inches out from your physical body; a bit more or less is fine, depending on what feels right to you. Set an intention that your golden filter will stay in place, allowing in energies that serve your higher purpose, catching and keeping out those that don’t. You’ll still be aware of suffering and negativity, but they won’t enter your body or energy system.
“You’ll want to periodically cleanse your energy filter. Go back into your meditation and visualize your filter around you. It might have become grey with dirt, or have holes that need patching. Cleanse your filter with a waterfall of glowing white energy from the sky, or with a fountain of sparkly gold from deep in the earth. Put your attention on any areas that need repair, swirling them with light. Follow your intuition as you effect your repairs and cleansing. Your non-physical guides might be there to help you, or you may see your filter in a much different way than described here. Trust that you know best how to manage your own energy system, and thus your methods will be perfect for you.
“Cleanse your energy filter whenever you’re feeling a bit run-down or overwhelmed. When you know you’ll be in an intense situation, like visiting someone in the hospital or attending a funeral, refresh your filter first. In a sudden crisis, pause and focus on it for just a moment, acknowledging its presence and its ability to help you. When you’re ill, invite in universal energies that will strengthen your filter and allow you to heal more quickly.”
– excerpt from Cultivating Self-Love: Your Path to Wholeness by Nikki Starcat Shields, Tidingdale Press, 2013