It started when I was a child. I was so intense and sincere about my faith. I wanted desperately to be sure that when I prayed for someone, that God would know exactly who I was praying for, and there would be no confusion. To do this, I thought a lot about what made people different from each other, and I knew it wasn’t the name. Lots of people had the same name. Looks? Well, looks changed, and some people looked so much alike, it was challenging telling them apart. There had to be a better way!
Then I realized that when I thought of someone, I got a taste in my mouth, a “flavor” I called it. That “flavor” stayed the same, no matter what they were looking like that day, or what I called them. The flavor had swirls of color associated with it in my mind, and I knew that I had found my way to identify people. Everyone had a different flavor / color combination and, from what I could tell, no two were the same. I could pray for an individual with some confidence that my intention was going exactly where I wanted.
It was literally decades later, when I was online (remember AOL chats? seems ancient news now!), and talking with a long distance friend about my concept of flavors and colors. At her suggestion, we went into a chat room together and she asked me questions in a private IM about what I “tasted” and “saw” relating to the people in the room. Then she explained something that blew my mind. She told me that I was seeing auras! I had always thought that was a cool concept, but I didn’t think it applied to me, because the way I saw them wasn’t anything like what I had read. They were swirls of color, and not neatly encircling an etheric body at all. They moved. They expanded and contracted.
I had heard as a child that one of my aunts could see auras, but I was told not to ask her about it. It was considered something private, personal, and not to be discussed! I was told talking about it made her very uncomfortable. So, this whole aura thing was both fascinating and unsettling. I started to pay more attention and I realized that I was seeing those colors all over the place, whenever I wanted to do so. I started reading about auras and learning bits about what the colors meant. Then, I would take what I had read and see if it applied to what I was seeing. Slowly, I put together this map in my head of meanings for different colors and flavors.
This ability to see auras sometimes feels sort of like when you see someone whose slip is showing, or whose underclothes show through what they are wearing. Most people don’t realize that they advertise so much about their inner workings to the world, and my being able to see it is actually a peek into something that they don’t realize is showing. People get embarrassed and defensive if they realize you see something they don’t mean to share. That reaction definitely applies to auras.
So, I often try to turn a blind eye, so to speak. Unless I have permission, or if the person is directly interacting with me, I try to not pay attention. I can’t avoid seeing it when I am interacting with someone. It is part and parcel of the communication process for me. Otherwise, I mostly try not to “see” the slip that is showing,or the energy signature that people don’t realize they put out to the world.
Perhaps because of this, I have never truly explored what can be done with this gift. Rightly or wrongly, I came to the conclusion that seeing auras was on the order of a “parlour trick.” It was kind of cool, but not overly useful. There are a few exceptions I have incorporated into my life, though. It definitely helps me to teach people to shield themselves, because I can tell them when they are still vulnerable or visible. When I give reiki to someone, I can see voids, knots and weird colors where reiki is needed to smooth things out. Too, it helps me be careful of certain people, whose addictions are very present in their energy field.
In the last few years, I started questioning my assumptions about the usefulness (or lack, thereof!) of auras. A few years ago, I read Of Water and the Spirit, by Malidoma Some, and I realize how baby-like my gift truly is. How undeveloped and under-nourished it is, and how much more useful it could be if I only learned to use it more fully.
My life is changing, as I have mentioned in several previous blog posts. I find that I am aiming for wholeness on a level that is beyond anything I ever conceived before. I dream of taking my love of spirituality, metaphysics and healing and making them a bigger, more integral, part of my life. This dream is making me look at my various strengths and gifts with an eye toward incorporating each one into the vision of the future that I am weaving. I know I can’t leave behind my left brain analytical side, but I so want to incorporate other things I know well, like reiki and maybe journeying techniques, teaching people to meditate and reconnect to the spirit of place, finding the joy and health benefits of earthing … there are so many options!
This blog about auras has been provoked because several recent dreams have been nudging me to do something with what I know about auras. I am just unsure at this point what form that might take. I think of a zen garden with rake lines around a rock when I consider the obstacle that I am currently observing within myself: How to identify the value of something to a stranger, when I barely value it myself?