Two Tools For Your Psychic Emergency Preparedness Kit

by Manya on August 8, 2014

While this post is not explicitly about Ecuador, it is definitely related to being “awake” in the Andes… what do you do when the shit hits the fan, you feel like crap, and you wonder if, finally, you really have screwed up your life?

I know some people are simply immune to this depressive, neurotic, self-defeating state of mind, but I alas am not one of them.  How could it be otherwise?

I grew up in a Jewish family with two more or less depressive parents.  Not once did I ever hear the word “faith” uttered during my sojourn in the family home.  And I had a scientist father whose ambivalence and cynicism towards religion must have covered a latent desire to proclaim his agnosticism (if not out and out atheism) despite his fundamentally loving spiritual nature.

So lacking both an orientation to faith and education about clear sign posts that would tell me what to do when I’d wandered into the backwoods psychic swamp of my mind wherein reside the vampires of sanity, reason, and confidence, it was inevitable I would become a Seeker.

Commune living 1972

Gratitude Note:  I could not be more grateful to be an early Baby Boomer as I got to experience the civil rights movement at age 13 and then all the amazing  life-forming phenomena of the 70’s and 80’s that shaped my 20’s and 30’s: the women’s movement, marijuana and a few other mind-altering substances, protesting the Vietnam war (high school and college), becoming a hippie in London during my leave from Harvard in 1970-71, the intentional communities movement, the personal growth and human potential movement, the flowering of openly spiritual philosophies and practices, and the ground floor of the holistic integrative medicine and healing paradigm.  All at exactly what I consider to be the perfect moments in my development.  How could it get any better than that?

So thankfully, I did come to experience and believe that there is some higher order, if not an actual Higher Power.

Nonetheless, I cannot recommend strongly enough that one should always have a Psychic Emergency Preparedness Kit.  There are two psycho-spiritual development tools I came across in my twenties that have served me in good stead over the last 40 years during confused, uneasy, or dark times.  And when faith in a Higher Power eludes me, I can place my faith in these and know that they never fail to help me find my way back to some inner clarity, reassurance, and yes, faith that life will go on.

Here are my two favorite roadmaps back to sanity.

Astrology:  “As above, so below.”

We humans are primarily energy bodies and therefore are influenced whether we like it or not by existant energy patterns, be they near or far.  These energy patterns are what we recognize as archetypes, with each of us having a unique configuration of archetypes that play out through our personalities.

ManyaChartThe Natal Chart is a map of the planets and their positions in the sky at the time of your birth.  All the elements of the chart – the planets, signs, houses, and aspects (represented by the colored lines) are all archetypes. So this map provides an uncannily powerful blueprint of the personality with its’ multiple facets, how they show up in the various domains of life, and your unique growth path in this lifetime.  Simply knowing the latter (signified by the North and South nodes of the Moon in the chart) will help you to know when you’re on course versus hanging out or getting stuck in comfortable, familiar patterns that may feel safe but are in fact dead ends.

My very first “Aha” moment of conscious self-awareness and feeling deeply seen by the astrologer who gave me my first reading came at age 22.  Subsequently, whenever I have found myself overwhelmed or confused about how to make meaning in my life, I’ve gotten readings through which I have gained insight into what is being called forth from me and what will serve my highest good.  These present-moment (vs. natal) readings, known as Transit Readings, are invaluable in attuning to and understanding the archetypal planetary energies present and the kind of growth being offered to you.

As a caveat, however, let me add that a key part of the value of this tool rests in finding an astrologer whose approach and unique skills in interpretation resonate in such a way that you find the conversation to be an enlightening learning experience.

The Enneagram:

Another ancient complex multi-faceted system for understanding personality type, the Enneagram will give you profound insight into both the shadow side and the Essential gifts of your personality.  The Enneagram is a mandala of principles of consciousness –  as a tool it helps us live a life of presence, compassion and awakeness; to be balanced, multi-centered awake humans.

EnneaMandala Image courtesy of

At the root of our personality is a chief imbalance – we defend it because it’s the foundation of what we believe we are.  However, it’s also our greatest, gift, our particular kind of spiritual genius.  Thus, each of the nine types represents a way of seeing both how we get stuck and the potential of opening to something way beyond what we can only imagine un-stuckness would be like.

The Enneagram is a study of what we’re doing instead of being present, compassionate and awake – the habitual patterns we get wrapped up in – and understanding how to bring presence or consciousness to bear on our own and others’ human condition.  While we each all have all the energies and difficulties described in the nine types, there is one that is our default mechanism, our central organizing principle when we’re in challenges.

All nine points are like spiritual lessons, journeys we all will grapple with if we’re sincere in the process of awakening.  If you want to liberate yourself from your own craziness, learn about the Enneagram.  You can take a free Enneagram Type test here.

[Shameless Self-Promotion:  I offer one-on-one sessions in working with your Enneagram type and in  September will be offering study groups (both virtual and local) to explore the liberating power of the Enneagram, overviewing all nine Enneagram types.]

Psychic Reading August 27, 2014 at 12:57 pm

Thank you for sharing this i am searching for this from long time your article helps me 🙂

Marian August 8, 2014 at 10:10 pm

Manya: What a shock! Haven’t seen that picture in years! Thank you. Brings back fond memories

Manya August 8, 2014 at 10:30 pm

Amazing amount of hair, wasn’t it?

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