Monday, January 10, 2005

More on Lost Pets: Communication Difficulties

Searching for lost animals is one of the most difficult and emotionally draining jobs an animal communicator can take on. The task is peppered with so many inherent problems that many communicators don't even take lost animal location cases. Penelope Smith's newsletter, Species Link, dedicated an entire issue to the topic of missing animals, in fact, in effort to support communicators who attempt to tackle this chore.

My previous blog post listed physical things, as well as telepathic tricks, that a lost pet's human can do to help bring their animal safely back home. In addition, if the owner decides to hire a communicator to help in the search, there are things they can keep in mind that will help them relate to what the communicator is receiving.

First and foremost, do what your communicator is doing and try to see things from your pet's point of view. Always remember that the communicator is seeing things through your animal's eyes, and what the animal perceives, and how he translates those sensory impressions, may not be the same as a human would. A classic example happened to me with a cat I was searching for. The cat saw a "large field", which turned out to be a moderately sized yard from a human standpoint. To this cat, however, who was not used to being outdoors, it looked enormous. Another cat who was unfamiliar with farm animals could only show me that she saw "great big huge animals", and the owner was distressed that I didn't know for sure if they were horses or cows. I would have loved to be able to define them more clearly, but the cat herself didn't know what they were, and I could only describe what she saw.

These are just two specific examples of what I'm attempting to relay. In addition, always receive things like numbers and signs (in fact don't expect road names and numbers at all, when they do come through they're an exception rather than the rule), colors, smells, and the identification of "human oriented" objects (such as the difference between a tractor and a truck ... to a dog or cat it may just be a great big noisemaker with wheels) with an eye to interpretation from the pet's perspective. If the object is close, the pet might not even be able to get an identifying view of it ... all he sees is big tires, all he hears is a frightening noise. Try to remember that when the communicator relays these things, she is only translating what your pet sees and understands in the best way that she can. There is no guarantee of precise accuracy, because your animal friend might not fully understand what he is seeing, and/or at the very least is seeing things from a perspective very different from "human".

Another difficult issue to relay is the chronological sequencing of events. An animal who is lost is often in an emotional state of fear, and is gradually shifting himself toward "feral" out of the need to dig up buried survival instincts and protect himself. When he relays things to the communicator, he is sending her images of and input on things that stand out in his mind, that appeared, to him, to be significant. However, he may not remember which of these items he came across first, and may not even be able to clearly relay what is happening "now". The latter is particularly true if "now" is a relatively quiet moment, and "then" was filled with danger, hunger, success in finding food or shelter, or some other momentous event or object. It can often be difficult to get an animal to focus chronologically under the often stressful circumstances involved in being lost.

One often difficult, for both owner and communicator, issue to determine is whether or not an animal is still in his body, or has passed on. This is made even tougher by the fact that this is one thing frantic owners desperately wish to know (and with good reason, of course). It's very hard to say to a teary-eyed animal owner, "I can't be 100% certain". I let clients know that I've been wrong as often as I've been right, and that I prefer not to try to make a definitive guess on that issue, but instead ask for physical impressions from the pet. I do get everything I can from the animal regarding physical sensation, and relay that to the owner so that they can attempt to draw conclusions ... and offer what comfort I can over their worry that their pet might indeed be dead. Even asking the animal outright may not be helpful, as not all realize right away that they have passed on. I have had several owners tell me that they found their pet surrounded by the things he had described, but that his spirit had already left. There is nothing more upsetting to a communicator, of course, even though most owners will express their gratitude and say that it's better than not knowing. Having been in their position, I agree with that sentiment ... but it is still so very hard on everyone involved.

I have watched, on a number of occasions, a television show on the Court TV cable network called "Psychic Detectives". These psychics work with police departments to find missing people and help solve crimes. So often they will know that a person has passed on, and be correct in their interpretation. It bothers me to watch this show, as fascinating as it is, because I always feel so inadequate. "If they can tell with people, why can't I with animals?"

I can only make assumptions based on the things that animals have taught me over the years as to why so many animal communicators do have a problem with this issue. First and foremost, I believe that animals are not as concerned over the physical state of their body as humans are ... meaning that death is not as traumatic for animals. Many deceased pets I've spoken with are more concerned over the emotional state of their human than they are over their own passing. On a personal level they seem to be very accepting of the fact that bodies are not eternal, but spirits are. When communicators speak with animals, living or dead, we are talking with that animal's spirit. The spirit is the same, and feels the same, whether or not it is still housed within the body. Still I strive toward the day when I might discover a key that I'm missing so far, that will allow me to be more accurate on this issue.

One thing the human friend of the animal can do to help is to try to calm their emotions a bit. Having an animal who is missing is very stressful ... but clearer information comes in over calm seas, and if an owner is very aggitated, it can sometimes affect the communicator's connection with the animal. Strong emotions can "stir the waters", making the connection more difficult. Many animal communicators will attempt to help with this by giving the owner something to do ... such as the search light and list of physical things to try. For many people, "doing something" will help them to get more focused and anchor their emotions a bit.

When working with a communicator to try to locate your missing pet, try to keep these things in mind. If you feel that a clue isn't clear enough, talk to the communicator and ask for a little more detail, see if they can see something from a different angle, and attempt to work with them in interpreting what your animal is trying to show them. Sometimes the most helpful thing a communicator can do is put the owner in touch with the animal more deeply, so that the animal's human friend can lend a "telepathic hand" to the search. In fact one of the best rewards animal communicators can receive is to see the owners of the animals they talk to begin to receive intuitive impressions from their pets themselves. This is true with tracking missing pets as well as all aspects of the human/animal relationship.

Saturday, January 08, 2005

Animal Communication Tips: Lost Pets

I do a lot of "missing pet" cases, it seems. I wish I could say that most of them have happy endings, but that isn't always the case. Some do, many, but enough have sad conclusions ... or no conclusions at all ... to make it a very frustrating side of the profession. In fact, a lot of animal communicators don't even accept location work due to the many problems it entails.

One thing I like to do, however, in addition to trying to contact the animal for clues to its whereabouts, is make sure the owners have done all they can on their end, both physically and psychically, to help get their pet home safely. I thought I'd share a little check list of suggestions and "things to do" here in case someone happening across this blog might find it useful.

Have you...?

  • Printed posters, flyers, cards with your pet's photo, contact numbers, date and time missing, area last seen, and offering a reward? Often small printouts, like business cards, are easier to carry around and hand to people as you go door to door, and more likely to be kept, while of course the larger items are better for "distance viewing" (bulletin boards, etc).
  • Places to put flyers: indoor community bulletin boards such as in grocery and convenience stores and post offices and banks, lobbies of apartment buildings, the side rear windows of your car (ask friends to do the same), windows of stores and other places of business where the managers give you permission (placed on the inside so the weather doesn't matter). Look for other sheltered places where the weather can't get to your flyer, as well as the more common spots like sign posts, etc. Find out if it's legal in your neighborhood to put posters on telephone poles, though. Not all places allow it.
  • Canvassed your neighborhood putting up flyers and handing cards or flyers to all your neighbors? This means actually knocking on doors and speaking to the neighbors. If you have to leave a card in a door, try to go back to that house later and actually speak to someone. People are much more likely to take interest if they can attach the situation to a face.
  • Talked and handed photos and contact information to everyone you can, especially delivery men, mailmen, anyone who makes a regular route through your area, and *children*? Kids almost always notice new dogs or cats wandering a neighborhood.
  • Visited the local schools and asked to put up flyers there?
  • Called the local police, veterinarians and shelters, and *visited* the vets and shelters? It often helps to go to the shelter personally, and often, as very busy shelter workers don't always "recognize" the identity of a dog or cat from a description they've received over the phone. Don't just visit your shelter once ... go back at least twice a week in case the animal has been picked up and the shelter workers failed to recognize it. This is not a slight on shelter workers in any way, they are very busy people in a high stress job and are trying their best, but they don't know your animal the way you do.
  • Searched the immediate area, in and under any form of shelter, checked nearby woods and brush, talked to neighbors, in case the pet has been taken in or closed up somewhere or has holed up for shelter and warmth?
  • If the pet is missing for more than a day: called the newspapers and placed Lost Pet ads? Likewise local radio stations, some of them will have a public service "bulletin board" type program.
  • Have you remembered to try and see the situation from your animal's viewpoint? Think like a cat or dog ... try to put yourself on their level, see what they would see, find spaces they would fit in, examine motivation that might have led them astray such as smells or survival fears, etc.
  • In addition, here is a method that has helped a number of animals get back home: Become quiet and focus your mind, try to calm yourself (not easy when you're so worried, I know). If you have children, instruct them to do this as well, kids are very good at painting clear mental images. Make a picture in your mind, make it as clear and "real" as you can, of a search light going out from your house. Now, imagine the animal seeing that light, understanding that it is coming from home, and following it home. Take time out every so often to repeat and strenghten this image, and send it to the animal. This little trick has helped several animals I know get home safely.
  • If you have friends and/or animals in spirit with whom you still feel close, and "sense them around you", ask them to assist you in bringing your pet back home.

There are also professional pet detectives out there, such as the Sherlock Bones organization, whose services you may be able to enlist.

Friday, January 07, 2005

Reality, Magic and Creative Thought

"Imagination is more important than knowledge."
Albert Einstein

"Reality is what you make it".

Quite a few years ago, my foot was set upon a path of discovery and exploration regarding the nature of reality. This probably, in truth, began with my birth or long before, but it was a cataclysmic event in my life which startled me to awareness and led me to realize, fully, that things might not be quite what they seem. This event was the death of a dog.

Yoda had been my best friend and constant companion for going on thirteen years, when liver cancer took his body from my life. Upon losing him, I thought for a brief while there that I would follow ... and indeed, had it not been for the fact that I had two young children who needed me.... But I went on, and gradually realized that Yoda was not gone at all. He had changed forms, and I missed his physical presence in my life every day ... and still do many years later. However, I could still hear him in my heart, and I gradually grew to know that his spirit was with me always; guiding me, teaching me, and being my friend. I do believe, whole-heartedly, that it was my acceptance of this realization which put me on the path to who I am today. It began my active exploration into spiritual things, including animal communication, and led me to a series of seemingly unconnected teachings that all pointed toward one central piece of wisdom.

Reality is what you make it.

In the dawning of this thought, as it was just beginning to truly form into something I could grasp hold of, I wrote an essay about my ponderings, which is still displayed on my website. Since that day the explorations have continued, deepened, and circled 'round again to bring me to a much more complete trust in the theory. Time and again I would embark upon a course of study or self improvement only to discover, at its center, that same single, simple and magnificent premise.

Everything we are, we do, we have and we experience begins first as a thought. And more profound still, the very physical nature of our world started as creative thought, a spark of imagination, a dream, that swirled and took form, and finally became manifest as something which could be experienced with the five senses.

The first leg of this journey into reality, I took alone. Ideas and concepts stirred half-formed in my mind, leading me to write that essay, to ponder the significance of what I thought I was seeing. I found a reflection of my thoughts in the words of teachers like Albert Einstein, but although I tried, it was difficult to make a real solid connection to what I was trying to comprehend. Then I became acquainted with the teachings of the Good Medicine Society, a Native American philosophy organization, and found, once again, that same idea woven among its wisdoms. This was the first time I experienced another person or group expounding, in more solid form, the very idea that had been plaguing me for several years. I was astounded ... not to mention comforted by the knowledge that I was in good company.

Then, a number of years ago, a friend introduced me to a book called The Dynamic Laws of Prosperity when she heard of our family's ongoing financial struggles. This book, by Rev Catherine Ponder, was an eye opener for me, primarily because as I read the first few pages of the books I realized (with a start): "there it was again". By this time, I was starting to get that "someone's trying to tell me something" feeling. I am certain I could feel Yoda's paw stirring the mix, see his dark eyes laughing in the starlight.

More recently, although I was introduced to the title of the book years before but had never read it, another friend encouraged me to read and apply the concepts in The Artist's Way. This book by Julia Cameron is geared toward artists, writers, and other followers of creative and artistic activities, but once again, the central concept behind the book is the same. Our reality is as we create it, and begins with the simple act of focused thought.

The concept evolved and deepened, and the exploration of this idea of how we create our own reality was interwoven here and there with my exploration of animal communication. And then, at a professional animal communicator's workshop at Spring Farm CARES, it was all "brought home".

The group was introduced to a book called Messages from Water, by a Dr Masaru Emoto. Dr Emoto is a Japanese scientist who began experimenting with and photographing microscopic water crystals. He would freeze the water in a certain way and then photograph the crystals which formed. He found that different water formed different crystals, and some -- primarily water that was "unhealthy" for some reason -- did not form crystals at all. What is more astounding, though, was his discovery that after speaking kind and healing words to this unhealthy water ... crystals would form.

Water could be healed by words, by thought.

Thoughts Changed Reality. And Dr Emoto had captured photographic proof.

My thoughts, my ideas, my explorations, my world were established. Confirmed. Energized. Turned upside down.

I'm far from the only person having this thought. And that makes it even more exciting. It's the Hundredth Monkey theory (1) in action, and I don't know if I was monkey number one hundred, or one hundred thousand, but with the help of Dr Emoto and his water crystal photos, the knowledge is spreading around the world. His first book, an accounting of his scientific research, became so popular that he published a follow-up. More recently, another book, The Hidden Messages in Water, which takes his photos and allows him to wrap his own philosophy around them, was published for the mainstream market. The story of Dr Emoto's water crystals has spread far enough to have been featured in a recent motion picture called What The Bleep Do We Know? by Captured Light Industries.

For centuries, the human race has been fascinated with the idea of magic ... the power to alter our reality. We have explored so many different ways to attempt to do this, from casting magic spells and mixing potions, to creating amazingly complicated works of technology. And yet, it is beginning to appear that the key to magic has been within our grasp all along.

I think, therefore I am.

"I think not!" said Descartes, who promptly disappeared.

Links to explore:
Dr Masaru Emoto's Website, publisher of the Messages from Water original books
The Hidden Messages in Water at
The Good Medicine Society
My "Reality" essay on
The Artist's Way official website
The Dynamic Laws of Prosperity on
"Dance With the Wind", a tribute to Yoda and Jai
What the Bleep Do We Know? -- the official movie website's view of Dr Emoto's water crystals
Spring Farm CARES

(1) The Hundredth Monkey theory comes from a tale of monkeys on an isolated island who were fed potatoes by some researchers. The potatoes were fresh from the soil and covered with dirt. One monkey caught on that he could take his potato to the water and wash it. Others began imitating him. Then suddenly, to the researcher's surprise, as the hundredth monkey on that island began washing his potato, all of the other monkeys on all of the other islands began washing their potatoes, too. The story illustrates how an idea, if enough people accept it, will become normal behavior for an entire race/species/population.

Wednesday, January 05, 2005

Other Sides of Me, The Crystal Pony, a novel

Okay, we can tell I'm not a blog veteran ... I decided to try posting one of my childrens' novels as a blog, and wound up doing it backward. Well, I posted it forward, which of course means it displays backward, thinking there would be a way to reverse the order of the posts, but I guess that was a bit of a faux pas on my part. And then, later, I discovered a help article about posting a blog in book format that I should have read before I started! It's fixed now ... and much easier to follow.

I've been writing, though not always actively or prolifically, for many years. The Crystal Pony was started while I was pregnant with my son, who is going on fifteen. It was drafted on an old Commodore 64 computer, with the help of an online writers critique forum -- which says a lot about how long I've been doing the online thing (Al Gore hadn't even invented the internet yet!) Yes, that makes the fact that I initially posted the chapters backward even more embarrassing, but I do hope someone enjoys the story anyway. It was previously posted on -- along with it's sequel (there are three, Wizard Prodigy being the third) The BondChildren. Sadly, FreeFiction appears to have disappeared ... I do need to try to track down its founder, who was in one of those early Pre-Internet writers forums with me, in fact. I'm a bit worried about her.

I'm not sure yet if the two sequels will find their way into blogs as well ... I suppose that will be decided if visitors read the first story and post comments that they'd like to see more. If not, well, it was a nice try, wasn't it?

The stories, as with much of my writing, have to do with a subject near and dear to my heart ... magic. In this case, the setting is a world where magic is the norm, though not all of my writing is like that. A lot of it has to do with finding magic in the mundane ... something I try to do in my day to day life.

I'll be posting here soon about magic and reality and the link between the two, in fact, though that will be a topic deserving of a post of its own. It's one I need time and focus to get started on ... else I may ramble on for days and my family will have to send the hounds into the ether to find me.

So ... soon. Read if you like, let me know if you like, and enjoy the winter weather, however presents itself to you ... or the summer weather if you're on the flipside! What better way to spend a winter day than curled up with a good blog?