Written by: Helen Kagan, Executive Contributor
Executive Contributors at Brainz Magazine are handpicked and invited to contribute because of their knowledge and valuable insight within their area of expertise.
What – you might think ‒ is she talking about? How can we possibly CHOOSE these things? What tree did she just fall off? OMG. These “new-agers”… They always bring up some unprovable nonsense, with no science behind it, no solid foundation, just fairytales.
Well… what can I say, being one of those “new-agers” (in addition to being a scientist, artist, energy healer, psychologist, therapist, and a few more “hats”)? I’ll say – come on, guys, it’s 2022. We all are survivors to a degree, some more, some less. But, we all have been going through quite a few challenges, overcoming quite a few obstacles, and dealing with multiple crises – both personal, domestic, professional and worldwide. We now know much more than we did even a couple of years ago when the pandemic hit the world and we were definitely NOT prepared for that. I was devastated, my business was crashed, and I felt completely "de-railed" just as most people were at the beginning of our "new era of Covid." We then lived trying to define our "new normal" ‒ whatever it meant for everyone and for society at large. Even a year ago when we realized and began to experience full speed many unwanted consequences of the world’s medical, financial, clinical, ideological, political, ecological, and many other changes that came out from the formation of that infamous “new normal.” Or earlier this year when a crazy and deadly Russian-Ukrainian war began, and every person had to make even more dramatic choices while the whole world began to experience consequences that we were not prepared for either. So… Can we really choose those BIG things I put in the headline, or do they just happen to us?
OK, let’s think about it. We are making choices every day, most likely – every hour if not every minute of every day. It is an avalanche of choices! How can we make them wisely? Is it ever possible? I would like to examine, together with you, how our choices can make the World a better place for future generations. Can we really choose not to repeat our “bad/wrong choices”? Can we repair the damage of the previous choices, and are they mistakes or “lessons”? How can our new, intentional choices enhance our lives and the lives of our loved ones? Do our choices hold us back and disallow our own growth and evolvement? What creative choices can dramatically enhance and even make our lives miraculous? How to discover a “Healer Within”? What is the unique role of Art and Healing in enhancing well-being and in the betterment of our lives today, in our “new normal” reality? I would like to dedicate a whole new article to each one of these important questions, along with the issues you see in the headline.
Choices. Mistakes or Lessons?
I would like to share a famous quote from one of my favorite writers –
“In the midst of hate, I found there was, within me, an invincible love. In the midst of tears, I found there was, within me, an invincible smile. In the midst of chaos, I found there was, within me, an invincible calm. I realized through it all, in the midst of Winter, I found there was, within me, an invincible summer. And that makes me happy. For it says no matter how hard the World pushes against me, there is something stronger ‒ something better, pushing right back.’’ ‒ Albert Camus
Interestingly, I am finishing this article about choices we make, right on the verge of Rosh Hashanah – one of Jewish sacred Holidays – a New Year. In the Jewish tradition it is a very special time for reflection, introspection, contemplation, and of course ‒ celebration. And while my last name is Kagan, one of the “chosen” Jews (but mostly as a target for antisemitism – a reason for fleeing a beautiful with a colossal cultural heritage yet very insane country with a totalitarian regime ‒ the former Soviet Union), I see it quite symbolic that my first article is being written in this very special time. And being aware of the importance of this paradigm, I am submitting this material dedicated to making choices, as one of the Executive Contributors to Brainz Magazine.
For this article, I decided to offer my 7 “Briefs” for you to feel supported on your Journey. I am also highlighting just 2 of the main holistic (mind-body-spirit) concepts/patterns I believe can affect our choices, decision making, desired results, and consequential outcomes. In the next articles, as promised, I will address in detail the important topics I’m just briefly mentioning today. These are – success, wellness, abundance, creativity, healing, and others – will be “put under the microscope” and examined regarding how our choices affect each of us, our family, community, and society at large. The theme of “making a choice” and the process of “discovering and embracing a Healer Within” ‒ are extremely interesting and important to me as a holistic practitioner. I call it a Journey from MESS to EASE, where M.E.S.S. is an abbreviation for Mental Emotional Spiritual S… (you can put your own S: as in Stress, Survival, etc.), and E.A.S.E. is an abbreviation for Emotional Awareness Spiritual Evolvement.
All this and more will come in detail in my next articles. Stay tuned! And in the meantime, you can enjoy my unique “HealingArts” @ www.HelenKagan.com. Thank you!
Quick 7 “Briefs” to support your Spiritual Journey from MESS to EASE.
Find your Vision. Define your Mission. Live on Purpose.
Embrace that Self-love is not selfishness. Practice it daily.
Recognize that Life is happening for us and not to us.
Discover what you are good at. Follow your Dreams.
Find what makes you happy. Get creative. Express yourself!
Remove clutter & chaos. Make clarity. Stop procrastinating. Just do it!
Create positive daily routines, regardless of your occupation or lifestyle.
And here, I will elaborate on the first 2 of the main holistic (mind-body-spirit) concepts I consider very important on your amazing Journey from MESS to EASE.
1. Find (or create) your Vision, define your Mission, and live on Purpose.
It is a well-known fact (scientifically proven) that people who live their Life on Purpose and have their Mission and Vision in place are living much happier lives.
Living on Purpose and bringing my Visions into reality have always been important to me as I consider myself a Visionary, an Artreprenuer, and a person of dignity and integrity. For instance, as a Visionary artist it is important for me to have a powerful and unique message I communicate through my art. A message that can touch people’s souls, uplift their spirits, and warm their hearts. This is why I originally created my HealingArts™, which is saturated with Love, Light & Gratitude I convey through healing frequencies of color, sacred geometry, embedded spiritual messages, energetically balanced composition, and positively charged intention. This is how I understand my own Purpose and Mission for my unique spiritual and healing art.
However, very often, I find myself being conflicted by various “material” matters that I do not accept as “spiritual.” I am sharing here my own struggle as an example, but you might want to look for, identify, and recognize your own limitations, which, for instance, are standing on your way to success (those infamous “negative beliefs”) – they can be the same or different. What’s important is to find them ‒ your own limiting beliefs, recognize what they are and how they are stopping you from success; work with them, and hopefully, get rid of (release) them forever!
For instance, I have always had an internal conflict of how I can simultaneously be spiritual and prosperous. I felt that if I consciously and intentionally AM on my Spiritual Journey, then it is impossible for me to become wealthy. Abundant – yes (energetically and spiritually). But prosperous? No. I did not feel that these opposite (for me) things can be congruent in any conceivable way. This is probably one of my biggest limiting or negative beliefs, blocks, or whatever else you want to call them – which I myself put into my own reality to “sabotage” my success. It is called “self-sabotage” – which of course is not something we do consciously! These “limiting beliefs” are hidden, they operate like “brainwashed ninjas,” as they’re definitely playing deadly mind games with us. I have worked plenty, both by myself and with various holistic practitioners, to get rid of my negative beliefs about wealth & prosperity, as well as on many other challenges that keep me from being abundant and happy. I can’t say that I am where I want to be in regard to abundance and prosperity, but I do know that I am on my way there! What was quite surprising for me to discover is that those “financial blocks” I have – are indeed multi-generational, multi-lingual, and are also related to my Self-worth, Self-Acceptance & Self-Love. Interesting…
I hope this will be helpful for you to identify and finally get rid of yours – good luck!
2. Learn that Self-Love is not selfishness. Release your Negative Beliefs. Practice it daily (remember ‒ put your own oxygen mask first!)
I feel that NOW is a critical time for many of us – “Spiritual Beings on a Human Journey” – to shift. To shift from fear – to love, from surviving – to thriving, despair – to happiness, illness – to wellness, from war – to peace. For instance, my "HealingArts" – is the foundation for my own shift to Love, Light & Gratitude. What’s yours?
First, I had to learn that Self-Love is not selfishness (am still learning :). I am also learning that I must become my number 1 priority in order to show up for people I serve, help, and assist. Therefore, my “lifestyle choices” are now shifting in the direction of “what are the most loving things I can do for myself so I can help others who need me, who rely on me, who I am here to serve. “ Yes, it does feel a bit weird, as I am absolutely not used to being the number 1 priority for myself. It is a learning curve, again, but a very necessary one, as many of us, especially women caregivers, are so used to serve others while forgetting to take care of or at least attend to our own needs.
As we already know, “negative beliefs” are those blocks that your subconscious mind puts there to “protect” you from happiness, abundance, joy, health, and wellbeing – you name it! These beliefs need to be intentionally worked on to be released (eliminated) from all your systems as THEY ARE TOXIC. Examples could be your beliefs that “you are not good enough,” that “you are not worthy of” (money, happiness, love, etc.); that you can never be able/capable to do… or that you will never find… (love, relationship, good job, etc.); and many other limiting beliefs that poison your mind and therefore negatively affect all aspects of your life.
We can’t feel worthy of anything without first embracing a basic concept of “Self-Love.” You most likely heard that no one (including the Universe, God, Angels, and all possible Sources) can love you more than you love yourself. Moreover, you can only receive from any outside Source exactly what you’re allowing to give to yourself from your inside Source ‒ i.e., receive from yourself. Many people get lost in this one, but it is really simple – you can’t expect to be given something from anywhere until you consciously allow yourself to receive it – which is one of the main principles of Self-Love. But how do we know what Self-Love is if we never experienced it? I will define Self-Love as an unconditional experience of love for yourself no matter who and what you are, do or have, what’s going on with you and/or around you or in the world. You just love & accept yourself just the way you are, and that’s the whole meaning of it. It doesn’t depend on you being smart or not smart, pretty or not pretty, talented or not, loving and caring or not, etc., etc. It doesn’t depend on you being something or anything. It is about an unconditional acceptance of yourself. It’s true that it is not always easy to remember to put “your own oxygen mask first,” but this is another main principle of Self-Love that will allow us to provide help and serve others in need.
Please allow me to end this article with my own poem which is a part of an “Anthology of Poems” written in 2020-2021 as a passionate response to our “new normal” reality...
It’s been a really long time since I lost it…
I lost my Trust in people, places, things –
THEY come to me in daylight and in dreams
They’re hunting my subconscious and my peace
And I can’t sleep. I feel like damaged broken piece
Of something so valuable and sacred but… they keep
coming to destroy my trust, my hope for the betterment
in people, in World that’s full of lies, pretense, betrayal,
Distrust, brutality, and violence… Perhaps I can
Forget it all. And not become a stale
ordinary boring nobody. To let the Light
come in and bring me back my Trust and Hope
that loneliness is just a gift to be exchanged for Love, but no.
THEY keep coming and telling their never-ending stories
With overflowing anger, bitterness, and sorrows ‒
The memories that don’t even belong to me...
They torture my forgiving, and I lose my Trust,
Again. I want to keep my blessings, my gifts,
My miracles that happen every day when I am open
to listen. When Spirit whispers in my ear gently
And I am ready to receive. Without feeling broken,
Abandoned, abused, destroyed, and violated…
Just trusting and allowing to forget.
Just loving and allowing to forgive.
Just holding breath and being quiet. Just letting
stillness to embrace me to
Forgive and Trust. Again.
Just open a door, no – a tiny window, a little
crack to take a sip of crispy air the freshness and
breathtakingness of which lets me erase the fears,
hurt, betrayal, darkness, losses, tears
Forever. The solitude that’s never been intended,
The fear of being hurt again. I want to trust that
It will never happen.
I want to trust that I, in the eternity,
will have my joy and happiness and love and
privilege to live My life
I am so desperate to have it back again.
Again, to feel beloved, and free, embraced, and open
To miracles and gifts that Spirit specially hold
for me to take with grace and give back ten-fold…
I want to trust that I can open my heart again
To all the wonders, omens, magic that’s plenty coming in
As gifts and lessons. But now I am the One who chooses
what’s right for me each time.
The choice is now mine.
And all I need to do is to forgive. Forget. And Trust
That it will never happen, again.
Forgive and Trust.
Helen Kagan “Healing Arts”.
One of my own very strong (positive!) beliefs is that art heals. And this is exactly why I continue creating in many different ways and shapes! I believe that art is a catalyst for healing individuals, society, and the environment. I believe that for many of us, creatives, art is a spiritual path, a transformational process, and a way of being. I believe in the inter-connectedness of mind, body, and spirit. I believe that now, more than ever, our World needs positive energy and spiritually-based intentions, beliefs, and values. As a statement of all my beliefs, my “HealingArts” is my unique way to synergistically bring together fine art, expressive arts, and the art of healing to enhance well-being, make the right choices, bring Love & Light, and embrace humanity.
The next article on this creative Journey of my HealingArts™ will be published next month. It will be about Success, Failure, and 7 Habits of highly successful people. Stay tuned! And in the meantime, please visit www.HelenKagan.com to enjoy my healing colors, and perhaps even to meditate on the above concepts… Thanks for reading!
Helen Kagan, Executive Contributor Brainz Magazine
Helen Kagan Ph.D., a scientist, psychologist, artist, a pioneer of creating art with the intention to heal, is a creator of unique HealingArts™ for 30 years. Helen believes art is a catalyst for healing individuals & society and engaging Healthcare & Hospitality to encourage healing through art. As a severe PTSD survivor who dedicated her life to helping others, she synergistically integrates Fine Art, Expressive Arts & Art of Healing. “HealingArts” shown in multiple International Galleries, States, Countries, and Catalogs, won awards, named "Collectible Artist". Her Mission now is to develop a new unique venue integrating fashion, design, art & healing ‒ WearableHealingArts™ ‒ to make healing through art accessible to everyone.