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A friend told me how she came to quit smoking. She was leaving a restaurant, lit a cigarette, and encountered a man selling carved wooden roses. He offered to give her the bucket and all the roses if she would put her cigarette out and quit. What he was really offering was spiritual guidance from the Universe for her. This article isn’t about not smoking. It is about being in relationship with the Universe: asking for, receiving, and following Guidance.

Spiritual guidance is direction, advice, sometimes information, about decisions and choices we face. It may help resolve a dilemma. It may reveal the future or indicate future events based on our choices today. It may come to us from someone we know and trust or from a stranger. It may come to us directly without the intervention of another person.

How Does Spiritual Guidance Work?

What follows are guidelines I’ve put together from my experience to help you get a better understanding of how Spiritual Guidance can work:

Corn Maiden 4a

Courtesy Terri Lambert,

1. Who you ask should be a positive and trusted source. It may be God, Buddha, Guardian Angel, Spirit Guide, or the Universe. What is critical is that the ‘who’ is a positive and trusted Force. I was raised Catholic and still feel an affinity for Mary. I have images of our Lady of Guadalupe, the Navajo Corn Maiden, and Guan Yin in my home. I trust the energy of these powerful female entities.

2. It helps to ask and it never hurts to ask. This part is easy. You say something simple and straight forward like, “I could use a little help here. I don’t know what to do about ‘x’.”

3. Then, you pay attention. The best practices I know to hone your ability to hear the response you get is with meditation and prayer. You might receive guidance while you are meditating or praying. It is more likely that you will simply know the right action to take as situations arise, or you will reach the best decision as you consider what to do.


4. Everyone receives guidance. This means you too. And the way you receive guidance is the way you receive it. There is no one way and no better or best way. I once thought that real guidance came in the form of extra-sensory-sight. It does not. Real guidance is the guidance you receive that feeds and sustains you in your life.

I have had trances and dreams. Sometimes I see, usually in my mind’s eye. I have even heard voices. Most of the time it is much simpler, I follow a course that feels right. I describe this as walking in a dark cave, my arms outstretched feeling my way along the walls. Occasionally I just know and don’t know how I know.

Many years ago I traveled on business almost every week. One Friday morning, in my hotel room I heard these words, “I mustn’t forget anything because I won’t be coming back.” Where they came from and why I had no idea. The following week, additional job requirements led me to give notice. I never traveled with that job or to that place on business again.


5. Guidance is calm. Even in a crisis when you must act quickly, guidance will be clear and calm.

As a young woman, living in an apartment, I was forcefully awakened one night and told to lock the front door. As this was something I checked every night (or so I thought) it seemed to me that there was no need. I fell back asleep and was awakened with the same instruction. I ignored what I was told. The third time I was awakened and told that if I went back to sleep I would not be awakened again. That was enough to get my attention and I checked the front door. It was unlocked. There is a lot more to this story but subsequent events in the apartment complex caused me to believe I would have died that night if I had not done as directed.

6. Guidance will never direct you to harm yourself or anyone else. Negative advice or directions come only from a disturbed ego or other negative force. Further, any so-called guidance that causes you to feel highly anxious is not true guidance.

7. Guidance you receive is for you, not the other person. Even a renowned psychic such as Barbara Brennan spent years doing personal psycho-spiritual work on herself before she was able to share her guidance for others.

By the same token, when another person says they have guidance for you, be wary unless it is someone you are willing to trust with your life. Many years ago a so-called psychic healer told me I had a terrible disease but she could cure me if I had 10 sessions with her. I told her that was nonsense and not to contact me again. She sent me an email then saying it was actually my husband who was ill. That was also nonsense and I responded that if she contacted me again I would report her for medical diagnosis without a license. The experience left me upset and I worked with someone I trusted to let go of the ugly fears she threw on me.


8. It is appropriate and a good idea to ask the Universe to corroborate guidance, especially for significant matters and decisions of your life. Even three times is not too many.

In one of the examples above, I knew I wouldn’t be returning on business. Two other bits of guidance reassured me that leaving the job was the right course. For one, I had pre-purchased airline tickets for perhaps 12 trips. I used the last of those pre-purchased tickets on that final trip and had made no future reservations. Still, before I gave notice I asked for guidance and had this dream: I was in a fishing village walking through cobble stone streets to the harbor. As I reached the water’s edge, the sun was sinking below the horizon. It was a beautiful sight and I woke knowing my time in that job was ending. More support came after I left the job: a tax refund that matched my income almost to the penny until I found a new job.

9. You can and should practice receiving guidance even in small matters.

I ask for guidance when I’m looking for something (yes, including keys and cell phones). I even ask for guidance about shopping: when to go and where.

My favorite anecdote about simple guidance comes from Barbara Brennan herself in Light Emerging (Chapter 16: The Process of Guidance in Your Life). In the early days of receiving guidance she was told to prune a dead branch from a tree in the yard. She thought it was silly and refused to do so. Until she did as directed (some three months later) she received no further guidance.


10. Be open. You don’t get to tell the Universe. This is about the Universe telling you and the peace that comes with trusting what’s so. Of course you can have an opinion. I like to make my opinion clear often by voicing it loudly and then acknowledge that I cannot know what is best.

When my mother was diagnosed with cancer I cried and pleaded with the Universe that she would get better. What I received in a dream was this: My mother came riding up on a motorcycle. She was young again and beautiful and so happy. “I’m going on a great adventure!” she told me. And then she was off, her black hair blowing in the wind. Losing my mother was very hard but that dream sustained me even as I mourned.

When has the Universe spoken to you? What precious message did you receive? How were you blessed when you followed spiritual guidance? Did you give thanks? More important, do you take the time to ask and listen every day? Though life is sometimes hard, the Universe is kind and will bestow blessings to help us through if we will be in relationship with it.


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Meditation: Sandra Egli
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The wisdom of a thousand generations guides you today. Only listen. Without a sound their voices reverberate in your cells. Settle within and choose your path.

All of us come from strength, fortitude, perseverance. No matter how difficult their lives, our ancestors made it through and passed on life for the next generation. Over and over, until it came to you. The intelligence that guided them has also come to you.

To Thine own Self be true.

If I could present you with a single blessing, it would be the gift of Mindfulness. Awareness of yourself: body, emotions, and self-talk, all the time. Our immediate experience is the ultimate exploration that only grows richer with time. What we do or don't do, and the roots of our behavior, are accessible with the simple practice of noticing immediate experience. It is this practice that makes it possible to know and be true to ourselves.


Sandra's graceful way of listening & non-judgmental demeanor allowed me to open up effortlessly. I was certain, as I left her office, that I had received precisely the healing I needed.

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