Interview with Shakti Gawain

by Veronica M. Hay


Shakti Gawain is a best-selling author and internationally renowned speaker/workshop leader in the world consciousness movement. She is the author who made Creative Visualization a household word in the 1970's and popularized the concept of intuitive guidance in the 80's.

Shakti has helped thousands of people learn to develop and act on their own intuition and creativity. She offers a new vision for resolving both the personal struggles and global crises of this decade in her book, The Path of Transformation: How Healing Ourselves Can Change the World.


Veronica: In your book The Path of Transformation you say that it is extremely important to grasp that we are creating our experience of reality in this life, not just on a personality level, but from a soul level. Can you explain that?

Shakti: When we talk about creating our reality, a lot of people have a hard time with that, and a lot of people kind of misunderstand that concept, and even misuse it, so I am trying to just clarify how to be able to use that idea in a way that is helpful and empowering. People often use that idea to think if they have a problem in their life, an illness or a financial problem or something, then they think, "Well I've done a bad job of creating my reality", instead of understanding that perhaps we may be choosing, on another level, that we are not in touch with.

We may be choosing a certain experience because it is really what we need as a learning experience in this life. So, my feeling is, that there may be certain choices that we are making on a soul level, that we would never make on a personality level. Nobody would ever choose to be sick or choose to have any kind of pain or a problem in life on a personality level. But perhaps, on a deeper level, where we have a bigger perspective on life, on ourselves and on the journey, that may go beyond just this life, we might be choosing something. Does that make sense?

Veronica: Yes, however I think that a lot of times some people still do feel guilty or that they are being judged - people look at them and think "Oh, look what you have done!"

Shakti: Yes, I know it is sad that it is misused that way. And I would say, that if the idea that you create your reality makes someone feel guilty or makes them feel bad, then I would just throw the whole thing out the window, rather than use it to hurt yourself. For me, it was an empowering idea in my life, the idea that I had some choice and that I had some influence in what happened. But you have to be able to look at life as a learning experience. It's like if you're an artist and you're learning to paint or you're learning to sculpt, you create it and you look at it, and you take the feedback from that to teach you how to perfect the art. Well, we're like artists in life, we are creating as we go along and we look at what happens to us as feedback to teach us about the process.

Veronica: Making a commitment to your consciousness growth means making a decision to become aware of and understand as much as you can about yourself, others, life and the Universe. How does one move consciously throughout life?

Shakti: That's a big question. Consciousness really means awareness. It's having awareness of what we're feeling, what we're thinking, and what we're believing. It's having awareness of ourselves on many levels, the spiritual, mental, emotional and physical. So, anything in your life that helps you become more aware of what is going on inside of you and what you are experiencing, is a step of consciousness. For many people, some type of a spiritual practice can be a step of consciousness. For many people, any kind of therapy or therapeutic technique that they use can help them to become more conscious. Really, anything that happens to us in life can help us become more conscious, once we understand that that is really what life is all about.

Veronica: Like noticing what is happening as we go along and allowing ourselves to feel it.

Shakti: Yes, and then taking advantage of any kind of support or tools that are available to us to help us with that process. A lot of times other people might be able to point something out that we can't see for ourselves. So, by going to a therapist, or a support group, or a counselor, or a church group, or anything like that, you can often get awareness or feedback that you wouldn't have on your own.

Veronica: A healing crisis occurs at the point where we have outgrown an old pattern or way of being but are still unconsciously holding onto that old way because it feels safe and familiar. How do we let go?

Shakti: We let go when we can't stand the whole process any more. When it gets too painful to hold on, we are forced to let go. But, having gone through a certain amount of experiences where you let go and you find that things have a way of working themselves out, sometimes even better, when you let go, than they do when you are trying to control things. Then, we can just remind ourselves, "Hey I can let go here." And we can just sort of gradually learn to trust the process of life, that we don't have to necessarily push it, or force it, or make things happen, but we can trust our own natural process.

Veronica: So, we could for instance, just let go for a little while, because for some people completely letting go is overwhelming.

Shakti: Sure, even a little bit of letting go, at an appropriate moment, is helpful. And one thing we can do if we sense that we need to let go of something, but we're not able to, is look to see what part of us is afraid to let go, and what it is afraid of, and really work with that part of ourselves to give it the sense of safety, that it's okay in this moment, in this particular situation, to let go. That's where it is very comforting for a lot of people to recognize that there is a higher intelligence, a higher power, or God, whatever you want to call it, and sometimes we can let go of our individual need to control and allow the higher power to go to work in our lives. It is by having an experience of doing that a few times and having it work out, that you learn to trust that process.

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