“The Doctor isn’t a man.”
I had decided to ride my bike to meet a new friend for the first time over coffee. Like many times before when I’ve settled into a quiet, quasi meditative state mentally on a bike ride, the vehicle my internal wisdom system chose for communicating with me was auditory.
The word for this burst of sudden auditorily-expressed insight is “clairaudience” and it’s part of a set of skills most people attribute to clairvoyance or “psychic” abilities; yet I don’t see it as part of a sixth sense at all. I see it as simply an expanded form of highly sensitive awareness around each of my five senses, and in my case, cultivated over years of spiritual attunement to the world around me. In my reality it’s simply a part of the body’s deep wisdom and connection to things bigger than our physical beings expressing itself.
Several of my more clear, life-informing experiences of clairaudience have occurred around exercise when my mind was completely relaxed and my energy and awareness focused on physical exertion. It’s at these times, I guess, my deep intuition is easiest able to impart wisdom via my hearing. Yet it was a surprise when it happened for the first time in several years that morning on the way to my first meeting with a new friend I’d just been introduced to.
You see, for decades during times of high intuition or contained within what many of us that experience these kind of multi-sensory experiences on a regular basis now call “downloads” I had gotten clearly that I would one day work with a doctor on something important to the further evolution of medicine and healing. So I knew exactly what “The Doctor” referred to when I literally heard this in my ear.
My soon to be new partner in crime had the intuitive wisdom to move into the house across the street from my best friend, whom I call The Connecter. In addition to being my closest friend and confidante for the past two years, I consider The Connecter a delightful example of integrated personal and professional forms. Not only is she the ultimate networker socially – she’s always connecting and referring people to each other – her livelihood is generated by literally networking governments and large enterprises via the tools of electricity and fiber optics. Interesting, I think!
Not long after meeting Julie, my friend The Connecter introduced her to our social network by posting this newcomer’s name and Facebook profile onto a private Facebook group page that we set up to facilitate our regular girls night activities. To say that my curiosity was piqued by the words “integrative medicine physician” in the post would be obvious to those that know I’ve blogged for the past 2 years about integrative medicine and healthy lifestyle. (No longer online, that blog was the precursor to this one. – ap)
The first thing I did when I greeted the new arrival to our group was look up her digital footprint. Social profiles, websites and blogs have long been my first source for the information about a new acquaintance. Okay, so my jaw dropped an itty-bitty bit when I saw the photo of Julie with Dr. Andrew Weil prominently displayed on her blog. I had a YouTube video of Dr. Weil explaining what integrative medicine is embedded in the sidebar of every page of my blog, Living Radically Well™.
Considering that Andrew Weil is the most visible advocate and teacher of integrative medicine in the world made this common point between our blogs not such a surprise. He is founder of the Arizona Center for Complementary Medicine (AzCIM) at The University of Arizona, the first and most comprehensive academic curriculum in integrative medicine in the U.S. When he emerged onto the world’s stage via his books and television appearances I breathed a sigh of relief like I had many times before when the medical pioneers that have touched my own life showed up and talked about concepts I had used in virtual isolation for years. It was a lonely, barren time for those of us who integrated our lives and medical care fully when I started this in the 1980’s.
As I always do, I took a “watch and see” approach as to whether or not this common interest meant something bigger was happening between Julie and me even though at the time I was in what I would call an active “search and find” state. After leaving what I thought was my dream job just a few weeks before I had returned to a state of deep contemplation as to whether or not it was time for me to dive headfirst into a long held belief that my purpose in life was organized around medicine and healing.
Julie and I had a great conversation over coffee and French pastries that first morning. I was delighted to find that her passion for all things “integrative” and “healthy living” was as strong as mine. The light literally poured from her eyes as she spoke about what mattered to her. As she did, she easily shared the very reasons she and her husband had chosen Austin while she was between medical jobs and exploring a feeling of purpose and a need for something bigger in her life’s work.
Like I usually did when things like this happen, I reserved judgment as to what meeting the first actual friend in decades, albeit a brand new one, who shared my passions actually meant. In spite of my clairaudient insight minutes before, I’ve long experienced that these kind of moments of synchronicity – what I call God winks – aren’t always life changing, but rather simply the next step along my path. I truly wish I could teach this awareness to a 25 year old me, but we live and learn, don’t we?
Since Julie and her family were literally still unpacking boxes I focused my side of our conversation on a desire be a resource for her as she felt her way around a new hometown just as I had three years before. As our two-hour chat drew to a natural end my new friend said something to the effect that she and her husband had talked about my blog and its stated purpose for creating conversations and community around integrative medicine. She then remarked that her first thought when finding it was that I clearly had digital communications expertise (she was just dipping a toe into the water of blogging and was rather overwhelmed by technology) yet I didn’t have “the medical piece” that she did; and that we seemed to perfectly compliment each other. I agreed, of course.
And then something truly extraordinary happened.
As Julie began rooting around in her large purse unable to find something she was desperately seeking while simultaneously looking at me and talking, she did something I now find utterly courageous. She apologized that what she was about to tell me might sound crazy to me. You know what I mean – that self-effacing thing we spiritualists often do when we’re about to share an insight of personal significance with someone whose spiritual belief system is something we’re not aware of?
I was both amused and comforted that she’d been bold enough to take the conversation in a spiritual direction with a virtual stranger. Since I’m what one of my teachers calls “an exquisitely tuned spiritual channel” I had long ago learned to keep spiritual insights out of most conversations I had with people. Until now I’d just been too out of sync with those around me to feel it appropriate or relevant.
As I sat there listening to her I was also aware of the fact that I was still adjusting internally to the fact that my clairaudience was turned on loud and clear for the first time in several years since getting on my bike to meet her. In one of the constant irritations of turning “down” my intuition it seems to crank itself up loud and clear when I ignore it too long and these moments of sharpening occur. In fact, after this day it was weeks before the “loudness” subsided. It’s like walking into a movie theater five minutes late where the sound is already blasting and having to wait for your ears to adjust. It takes a few days sometimes for me to adjust to the extra auditory stream of insight almost 24-7.
Nothing could have prepared me for what she then took out of her purse and set on the table in front of me.
“I think I’m supposed to show you this,” she said.
There on the table in front of me she placed the key to her new house. Mind you, it’s right across the street from my closest, dearest girlfriend – one of the first I’ve had in my adult life after being fairly isolated in a small town.
Silk screened all over the key itself were peacock feathers.
Okay, so it was interesting. As was her recounting to me that for several years her biggest moments in life – such as while visiting Austin during a hunt for a new hometown, looking for a house, and right down to the medicine animal chosen by her Arizona Center of Integrative Medicine fellowship class – were all organized around the appearance of peacock feathers or peacocks.
I then found myself with no choice but to respond in kind. I mumbled something about my sense for decades that I was supposed to work with a doctor in my life’s calling, and that I had assumed perhaps one day I’d simply be in a personal relationship with a doctor or collaborate on a book with one. I might have even told her about the auditory message that I received when I’d set out to meet her. All I can tell you for sure is that it was such a relief to meet someone for the first time in years for whom the power of synchronicity, the spiritual connection with animal wisdom, and the use of expanded awareness weren’t things I had to leave packed away in some beautiful box.
What transpired over the ensuing several weeks after meeting Julie would take pages and pages to share properly. I’ll save the longer examination for the books we’re both writing. Yet to give you a hint of the power of the connection we’re both working with I’ll leave you with this:
As Julie and I were closing our first meeting with each other a random comment from her about “leaving Longview” made me do a double take.
“Longview?” I asked.
“Yes,” she answered. “Longview, Washington is the name of the town we just left.”
So the town where she spent almost 15 years building her career, and in which the last few years she had nursed feelings of being “on exile” from something bigger – was named “Longview.”
You see, I had moved to Austin from Longview, too – Longview, Texas. My arrival in Austin after an almost 15 year period in my hometown had been marked with such a stark contrast to the feeling of exile I felt there that I immediately began calling Austin my “mothership.”
And I haven’t even told you about the purple egg thing. Stay tuned! 🙂
—-||—-Photo:: My workshop collaborator and office-mate Dr. Julie Reardon and I recently spent a day in the sunshine with close friends and members of the central Texas Egyptian Arabian horse community at the Bear Creek Ranch open house.