Medium, Raylene Nuances, invited me to have a session with her today, and it went very well. We were supposed to talk about weight issues with Erik, and we did, but she first wanted to give me a personal reading with the help of my new spirit guide, Amanda (I guess I ran one off in disgust,) Erik and my father. It’s the first time I’ve had a personal reading since shortly after Erik died, so I wasn’t used to all the attention. Of course, I won’t publish that one, but I will publish the one about weight problems. It was all very fascinating!
Before reading the post below, don’t forget that tomorrow at 7 PM CT is Erik’s Hour of Enlightenment radio show. Call 619-639-4606 15 minutes prior to talk to Erik. http://goo.gl/aFHTzJ. Should be fun!
Me: I want to talk about the end of year holidays like Hanukkah, Christmas and Kwanza. Gifts are great and all, but the greatest gift is love, right?
Erik: Okay, I’ll sign up for that.
Me: Well, I don’t want to put words in your mouth! How should we spend our holidays? What should we keep in mind?
Erik: If we’re looking past the concept that we actually chose to come to life, that we actually chose to be here, if we’re looking towards our human existence and our human celebration with gift giving and stuff, we forget that we have the choice whether to participate or not. We see ourselves as managing our lives and the situation and not really claiming the responsibility of, “Fuck everybody else. I chose to do this. I chose to show up.” So, I think one of the first things to acknowledge is the choice of showing up for this holiday experience. And then if we’re looking at it from the perspective of the human experience, I believe the best gift is a true sense of connection. Maybe that’s how people define love. That means to absolutely be there for somebody without judgment, cause or need. There’s something to be said for choosing a human life rather than that of an animal or a plant. We all have—
Jamie: Who’s “we?”
Erik: All living entities on Earth: animal kingdom, plant kingdom, you know, people kingdom, insect kingdom—
Me: We’re part of the animal kingdom, Erik! Just letting you know.
Erik: I know we’re mammals, but when you say, “animals,” a lot of people don’t think about themselves. They’re like, “Huh? Oh yeah. Human kingdom. That’s me.” But we had a choice in what kind of vehicle we were going to pick. We all think the human vehicle is the best probably because we have a broader sense of language, we travel easier, there’s more freedom connected to it, and we’re at the top of the food chain. It’s a pretty good gig, but we chose to be here, and one of the reasons to choose to be human is need to connect to others whether you made that choice to feed your ego or whether you made that choice to fill your heart—your value of love. Other kingdoms have a sense of community, too—trees, animals, insects and so forth, but ours is a little different because we tend to place a lot of value on community and it affects the way we see ourselves. That’s how much we value it. A lot of us walk around today and look at people and take what we say about us as hard fast facts. “They don’t like me! I’m a bad person!” It’s not fucking true, but we can work on that shit later. I’m talking about holiday, right, Mom?
Jamie laughs because of Erik’s rambling.
Jamie: We’re talking in a very—I think it’s an oval, not a circle.
Me: It’s a rabbit hole.
Jamie: There you are. A rabbit hole.
Erik: I just wanted to highlight the choice of being human, that one of the basic needs of humans is community—communication, connection, and so if we’re looking at the best gifts, you know, you mentioned love, but really I think it’s about providing space where somebody feels supported, safe, secure and heard. If you could shove that shit in a box and wrap it up with a bow, I think that would be the best gift we could give someone.
Jamie and I laugh.
Me: It’s a lot better than the gift we gave your sister, Kristina.
I went on to tell the story of how Lukas and Annika like to put gag gifts under the tree: a box with a crumpled piece of paper, one with a Reba McIntyre CD from the 80s and, in her case, one with our chihuahua’s box of ashes. She loves getting gifts and was excited because the box was so heavy, but boy did she get a surprise. Nothing from Prada. She laughed though. Such a good sport.
Erik: It’s a good exercise in humor.
Me: That’s right. So basically, how should people spend the holidays including how they should think about the holidays, which you’ve covered?
Jamie: I love that you guys were saying the same thing! How we think about the holidays.
Erik: I’m going to make this fucking small for everybody because this might be difficult. (Hands together as if in prayer) Bear with me.
Me (chuckling): Okay.
Erik: A 24-hour period of no judgment.
Me: Mm. That would be nice.
Erik: Just listen, respond, no judgment. You can throw out all your fucking opinions, talk about them, blah, blah, blah, but no judgment.
Me: You know, people would really be surprised by how judgmental they really are when they see how difficult that is to do.
Erik: It’s so true, isn’t, Mom?
Me: Oh yeah. That’s a great idea. What else?
Erik: You honestly think we can stack more on top of that? That’s going to be a bad game of Jenga.
Me: Oh god, I can imagine. “Oops, pulled out the wrong piece of wood!”
Erik: If we could get people to focus on being nonjudgmental—and let’s say for those who feel like they have a pretty good grasp on that—I would then challenge them to forget the past.
Jamie: What do you mean by that? That’s weird.
Erik: To forget the past like expectations, like, “Uncle Joe. He always does that thing where he smacks me on my ass, and I hate that.”
Me: Oh god!
Erik: “Uncle Joe. He’s going to pull that shit again, and he’s going to smack me one. I’m going to punch him in the face!” Why don’t we drop the expectation of anything happening and just avoid Uncle Joe’s hands. Don’t give him the opportunity. Don’t put your ass out there.
Me: All right, so just let go of expectations of the past.
Erik: Yeah, you’ll be surprised about what happens. Also, if you think you’re already pretty nonjudgmental, when Uncle Joe goes to swing his hand, turn to him and go, “You know, I’ve never ever liked that, and I’ve probably told you in the past. I’d like you to listen to me and know that I don’t like that.” Put a stop to that and move on.
Erik: People get so wound up because most of the time they’re spending time with family members they don’t even fucking like. They do it because of loyalty or family dynamics from a long time ago. “These are the holidays. These are the times when you suck that shit up.”
Me: I know.
Erik: So a lot of times, people feel like they’re going into war mode.
Jamie mimics a marine crawling through the mud on his elbows.
Erik: It really fucking sucks. With that in mind, if you feel like you’re going to be surrounded by people you don’t enjoy anymore even though they’re family and don’t consider them family, sit down and figure out who your family really is. Invest in them and take some time to heal the relationships with your blood family.
I guess he means immediate family, but they can be people you don’t want in your life either.
Erik: It’s okay to not dedicate your time to people you don’t get along with. It’s not making good memories. You’re suffering, so tell them, “Hey, I’m skipping this year. I’m going to do something different with the kids or whatever and ask those people that you love, probably friends or extended family, if they’re going to be the ones that are going to show up for you. It’s not like I’m interested in tearing families apart. I’m mostly interested in getting each individual person healthy so that they can then look at their relationship with their family and heal them. Maybe the next Christmas, you’ll be like, “All right. Let’s fucking pull this shit together,” and no matter what shit is thrown at you, you’re able to go, “Ha, it’s not my problem. It’s their problem and they’re pretty damn loud about it. That shit looks nice on them and on their walls, but it doesn’t on mine.”
Me: Okay. I guess that’s a metaphor.
Jamie: It is, and what was funny is in the image, the family members were monkeys and they were throwing shit against the wall and on themselves. It was really weird.
Me: Oh god. What about gifts? Unfortunately these holidays have strayed from their original meaning and gone to the whole Hallmark, materialistic type consumerism field.
Erik: Yes, it has.
Me: Is that a bad thing?
Erik: Well, I personally think that gifts are wonderful.
Me: I love giving gifts! It’s so much fun!
Erik: I’m not here to stop that!
Erik: But the point where you’re over-giving, that’s the stupid shit. That’s when marketing hits these families that have a smaller budget, but they convince them that they have to go way beyond that budget to make Christmas real in their home, Hanukkah real in their home. Fuck that shit. No, no, no. I would create traditions where each person gets one big gift and one little gift, maybe the stockings or the eight days of gifts or things like that, and then have the children or the adults in the household bring something that they no longer use. You can have a white elephant party or give them to people who don’t have these things. Pay it forward.
Need a gift idea? Why not purchase Erik’s book, My Life After Death: A Memoir from Heaven, for those you love. Or you can buy it in Nook, Kindle, Audible or audiobook format. You might have to widen your browser page to see all choices.
Here’s a review of the book:
Erik is a fun loving spirit who has very real messages from or those who are wise enough to really listen. He has helped many skeptics, including myself, to know that there is so much more to this world than we have been told. YOU GO ERIK, JAIME and ELISA! The more I read about this, certain things just ring so very true.
–P. K. Oakes