In my last post, I have shared my tomcat Max’ journey during this year. A second tooth surgery was necessary and we had to get rid of an ear tumour that showed up as an ear infection. And Max went through all of that as a chronical kidney disease (CKD) patient.
He is now four weeks after the ear tumour surgery, and he is doing very well. The first two weeks after the surgery he didn’t eat his normal portions, so he lost a bit weight. No surprise with all the medications. Now he is enjoying his food again, and his is back at his old weight of 6 kg. Although he is a CKD patient, he never lost a lot of weight like so many other CKD cats do. Now, he is enjoying all the things he loved to do before the surgery, including playing and fighting with his friend Flix. He seems to be back in his old mood, which is such a priceless gift!
All the challenges we mastered together led to a very deep relationship
He became even more affectionate. And now, he seems to need his humans even closer surrounding him. During the first two weeks after the surgery, when he was wearing his cone, he has spent whole nights in my bed, always in touch with my back or curled up in my crook of the arm. He just wanted to be there, to be supported, to feel his human, knowing that he didn’t have to go through all of these things alone. Often, he was just lying there, very calm, just inhaling and exhaling. And then, he enjoyed that I have taken over the scratching jobs for him, in areas he couldn’t reach due to the cone.
As a rescue cat, all these little things are actually a huge behaviour change. He learned in this short amount of time to accept help and support and to allow his human service personnel to support him. He recognised that all these things were done for him, and not against him. So many little things in his behaviour showed that he appreciated the whole process and that he was feeling the healing. It seemed that he suffered from lots of pain during the ear infection, and this pain was finally gone shortly after the tumour surgery.
Max showed us this in a very special way: he simply peed a heart in his cat toilet. Two times. You won’t believe this, but it’s true. It already happened after his second tooth surgery. After a few days back at home, he also peed a heart!
Animal communication pointed to the cause of the ear infection
From today’s perspective, I can clearly say that the animal communicator’s healing journey, which led to a bleeding ear, was actually the trigger that changed the process. The bleeding ear changed my level of awareness from taking care of an infection to dealing with an emergency. And it forced the vets to change their focus from an ear infection to something bigger.
I’m not a big fan of “would”, “could”, or “should”. But in this case, we can at least say that this trigger has accelerated the process of finding the cause, the tumour in his ear canal. So, I perceive the ear infection as a symptom that created the necessary awareness to look deeper, to recognise what was going on behind the symptom. This increased awareness led to the CT and the follow-up surgery.
And the ear tumour itself is actually a symptom of deeper issues in his life that were brought to the surface via the tumour. Let’s look at those and why it’s important to understand that kidneys and ears are energetically connected to each other (for details, click here).
Max as a rescue cat didn’t feel heard for a long time
Max, a rescue cat, spent most of his life without having a loving home. Instead, his life was pretty hard, on a large farm (nothing romantic about it!), as we know from the animal communication. Images he shared with the animal communicator were about a hard life in a rural environment, hunting for a living, and protecting many other cats, His life also included a few dangerous situations that were a few times life-threatening for him. The only reason why he always had a positive attitude towards humans seems to be the fact that a woman, apparently, saved his life when he was a kitten and very ill. This also was an image he shared during an animal communication.
However, he ended up as a stray cat, and then in the animal shelter, where we adopted him and his friend Flix in January 2015. At this point, I already knew that he was diagnosed with a chronical kidney disease.
Now, reviewing almost two years he is now living in his forever home, so many things have changed. He became pretty soon a very affectionate tomcat. From the very beginning, he was always a talking cat, and a cat with a certain need to control and oversee things. Then, he slowly started to relax. He needed many months to learn how to deeply relax and to believe that he didn’t need to worry anymore, that he had arrived in his forever home.
In his previous life, Max could never live without fear. Now he could.
And that’s important to understand what has happened ever since. Cats, especially stray cats, have to hide any illness as it makes them weak and vulnerable. It’s a matter of life and death. And that’s what he did. Hiding everything. Emotions and illnesses.
Now, as he experienced a forever home, and love and care; now as he could relax and let go of the threats of his past life, things have changed fundamentally for him. For the better, of course. Only then, he could take care of himself and allow things to happen. And then, the illnesses showed up.
Diseases have to be recognised and accepted to be cured
Many older cats, actually every third older cat, develops a chronical kidney disease. That is probably not so specific for Max’ journey, but the ear tumour definitely is. It could be about not being heard. Or the feeling that nobody was listening to him. Whatever it was, there was an imbalance within him. Something was not in its natural, divine order. And that’s probably why his body has developed this tumour. As Max’ vet said, those ear tumours need a longer time frame to grow to a size as Max’ tumour did. It’s nothing that happens within a few weeks or months only. That means that he already had this tumour in his body when he adopted us as his forever service personnel 😉
Treating the chronical kidney disease first
Now, the first issue I have looked at was, of course, how to help him with the CKD, as it is a terminal disease. That included making me an expert on CKD in cats. I’m grateful for the network I can rely on: a network of highly capable vets and a support group of very knowledgeable “CKD cat people.” Yes, it needs a village to keep his tailored therapy plan up to date that allows him to enjoy his life, to stabilise his kidneys and to even improve the kidney function. To achieve this goal he had to undergo two tooth surgeries to remove inflamed teeth from his body because they impact the kidneys significantly. But the relevant indicator, creatinine, only remained stable. It didn’t get significantly better.
Max’ kidney function improved as soon as the ear tumour was removed
And now, we come full circle. One week after the tumour surgery, the anaesthesia, and all the stress around it, his creatinine was significantly better! I asked the vet two times whether this was a joke or a fact. It was true. And actually, it all makes a lot of sense. As the ear tumour was growing in his ear for a longer time, it was no surprise that the kidneys could only be kept stable even with interventions (teeth) that should improve the situation. Because in parallel, the tumour was growing; impacting the kidneys negatively.
In TCM, kidneys and ears are considered as energetically connected to each other. Looking at Max’ situation, it makes total sense.
Of course, Max’ CKD cannot be turned back as it is a terminal disease. But in our support group, many CKD cats live with this illness for many years: with tailored therapy plans based on e.g. a renal diet, specific homoeopathy and healing mushrooms. Leveraging all these options, he has the best life he possibly can have.
And that’s all there is to care about. His quality of life.
I’m just giving him back his birthright to enjoy his life.
And in parallel, I got the best role I ever had: to be Max and Flix’ human.
Stay tuned: Next time I will share more about Max’ friend Flix and his challenges this year.
In January, I wrote about Max and Flix, the two tomcats who changed my life fundamentally. I shared some stories about their first year in their forever home. Both came with some luggage from their previous lives: Max, 13, had a chronical kidney disease (CKD or CRF) in his luggage, and Flix, 16, came with lots of fear, a lack of self-confidence, and a tendency to vomit whenever something changed in his environment.
Now, ten months later, I have a lot to share! We had to go through some challenges regarding healing body and soul. Let’s begin with Max’ story today.
Max’ kidney disease impacted his teeth and the other way around
End of last year, we had a stable situation regarding his kidney disease. The kidney values were pretty high, but luckily, he was feeling much better and had almost none of the usual symptoms of a stage 3 CKD cat. Our vet recommended based on the results of his quarterly kidney check in December to remove most of his upper molars within the next few months. Not only to help him with the bad teeth but also to eliminate any inflammation in his body that is continually impacting his kidneys in a negative way.
So, the decision to do so was made in April. I have involved my peers, my CKD support group, how to prepare Max in the best possible way for his upcoming second tooth surgery within nine months. Max got, in addition to his renal diet, an adjusted therapy plan with a healing mushroom and slightly changed homoeopathic remedies for his kidneys.
Max mastered his second tooth surgery in May
It’s always heartbreaking if you have to bring your cat to the animal hospital, knowing that the cat already hates this day and that it won’t get any better for a couple of days. As I’m doing a lot of energy work myself, I know exactly the impact negative energy can have on every living being. So, it was even more important for me as Max’ human to keep the energy positive, loving and caring, focused on the best possible outcome for him. He knew what would happen. And why. Animals are intelligent beings, and if you can communicate with them on a soul level, they do understand even if their behaviour doesn’t show you that they do.
At the animal hospital, I was waiting for the veterinary dentist with him, who already made his first surgery. I hugged him again and promised him that I would take him home the same day. Then, I went back. Like last time, I couldn’t do anything useful until they called me in the afternoon and reassured me that he was doing fine, just without all his upper molars. The x-ray was worse than expected. The severe impact of his CKD also surprised the veterinary dentist. So, she removed all the upper molars. Then he got additional infusions for a few hours after the surgery to get the anaesthesia out of his kidneys as fast as possible.
On the way back home, he was constantly talking to me, questioning the whole day. “Human, what did you think?” “I remember you told me something about my health, but right now, my mouth hurts a lot.” He can be very bossy with this behaviour… It’s his way to release stress, articulating things immediately. At home, most of the stress was already gone. I love this boy…
Back home he has eaten a full portion and demanded more. Back home he has eaten a full portion and demanded more. Sir Max is a very special soul. Like last time, he got 24/7 care. And like last time, he only needed painkillers for three days. As it was end of May and sunny, he decided to spend many hours on the balcony or the loggia on his garden chair, recovering from the past-surgery pain. Inhale. Exhale.
My happiness was simply to see him recovering and enjoying his life again; knowing that the decision was the right one.
The summer came, and Max continued to enjoy his life in his forever home. He had so much fun to be in the sun, then in the shadow, and back into the sun, it was pure happiness to see him happy. Why couldn’t it continue like this? But, apparently, there was more that need to be healed in his little body.
Our next challenge began with an ear infection
End of August, Max developed an ear infection in his left ear. I was for a week in Scotland, when it happened. The whole day I had pain in my left ear, not knowing what was going on. Until I heard in the evening from Michael that he had to take Max to the vet because of an ear infection. My ear pain stopped immediately, and I focused my energy on him.
His left ear was always the one he had a scratch on more often than on the right ear. But no vet could ever find something else than “oh, there is a lot of cerumen in this ear.” Now, the cerumen was black, and it smelled, and the ear canal was swollen. He got some medication and should check the ear after two weeks.
Knowing that kidneys and ears are energetically connected to each other, I didn’t have a good feeling. Max was relaxing a lot more than he usually would do. When I look at the photographs I have taken from him during these weeks; he was always tired, curled up somewhere, and very calm. And this is not Max, who is usually a pretty bossy and active tomcat. I asked our animal communicator who had already successfully worked with both cats during their first year to make a healing journey with him.
Animal communication works…
A few days later in the morning, when he came in my bed, there was a lot of blood in his ear and around his ear. Oh no… Interestingly he was on a much higher energetic level. I called the animal hospital and explained the situation. Emergency today at any time or appointment the next day with an ENT vet. I decided for the latter. Then, my animal communicator shared with me how the healing journey went: She was virtually travelling with him the night before his ear was full of blood. During the session, she was focused on removing blockages and strengthen his connectedness. And the image she got at the end of her session with him, was that a plug came out of his ear like a cork.
Wow, that’s why his ear was full of blood! Apparently, the healing journey helped him to get rid of things that no longer served him. And the blood in the ear was a physical symptom of this process. Good!
A not so nice suspicion…
The vets were irritated about the blood in his ear because they couldn’t determine where the blood came from. They assumed that there could be a tumour in the ear canal, maybe the root cause of the so-called ear infection. And therefore, a computer tomography (CT) was needed.
Oh no… my poor Max! Another anaesthesia, and another day in the animal hospital and he would again need infusions a few hours before and after the CT. I discussed the situation with Max’ regular vet, and after evaluating his current blood results and his kidney ultrasound (stable, but still high kidney results) we decided to schedule the CT as soon as possible, and a follow-up surgery in case they would really find a tumour during the CT.
Just a few days to prepare Max as best as possible for his third anaesthesia within 12 months as a CKD patient. He got all his natural kidney boosters to strengthen his kidneys as best as possible. And he got, even more, love and attention, and lots of soul preparation. And I made a manifestation for the best possible outcome for him.
Another day in the animal hospital for a CT and an ear surgery
The next Monday I brought him to the animal hospital. While we were waiting for our vet, I was singing a song for him, while he was sitting in my arms. It was such a beautiful moment, full of love. He was kind of calm and content. And I already knew at this time that there wouldn’t only be a CT today, but also another surgery. I went home and tried to work. At the date of the CT, I made an “Om Mani Padme Hum” meditation together with Flix. Whenever I do this, he is joining me. This time, he knew that we were doing this for Max.
When the phone rang, and I picked up, the vet told me that there was a tumour in his ear canal that had to be removed. So, they made the surgery right away. I was waiting for their call for the next three hours (don’t make my mistake, always ask how long the operation would normally take!). Then, the known number on my phone’s display: “Max is doing fine, he is waking up right now.”
Woohoo 🙂 Inhale. Exhale.
It took a load off my mind…
I was crying as so much stress had been released. Then I had to drum for a while…
Max made it. Again. What a hero!
He had to stay in the hospital for one night. Luckily, I already followed my intuition in the morning and put his favourite cat blanket for him in the cat carrier.
A difficult night, not only for Max who was keeping the staff in the hospital busy but also for me and Flix, his beautiful cat friend. He is always very nervous when something is happening with Max. He is afraid of losing his friend and protector Max. So we have taken care of each other.
Taking Max home 🙂
I cannot even describe my deep inner happiness when I could take him home! He wasn’t debating a lot on the way home, as he normally does. He was calm and looked at me, very often. For me, this was a sign that things were already much better for him than before the surgery.
We have found ourselves back in the well-known 24/7 “after-surgery” routine. This time with painkillers every 8 hours, eye drops for the left eye every 2-3 hours, and antibiotics twice a day, on top of his kidney medications. A side effect of the ear surgery was that his left eye was impacted, due to some disconnected nerves. His eye looked in another direction, and it was deeper in the eyehole. It’s called Horner syndrome. My vet explained it to me and that it would take 4-6 weeks until the eye would completely recover. She also prepared me in advance how Max would look after the surgery…
Sir Max, what a character! Strong, determined, focused, and always present to the present
I can only learn from him and his physical and mental strength. He was doing pretty well, always pretending that everything was OK even if it wasn’t. But that’s Max. He simply refuses that anybody or anything could ever ruin his day. Now, three weeks after the surgery, he is again a talking cat, a bossy cat, a very determined cat, enjoying every moment of his life. And he is again taking care of his highly vulnerable friend Flix.
After two weeks, the stitches have been taken out. And we could remove the cone which he had to wear to avoid that he could hurt his scar. What a happy day for Max! He was so incredibly brave regarding the cone. It seemed that he knew that he needed it. He only tried once in the second week to get rid of it which is entirely understandable. Now, the scar looks really great. And his left eye is almost fine.
Finally, we have defeated Max’ ear cancer
We got the result a few days later. It was cancer. But the vets confirmed that the tumour was removed completely. And the tissue surrounding the tumour is healthy.
And you know what? Max’ kidney results, especially his creatinine, decreased significantly!
What a journey, via an ear cancer, to get an even better prognosis regarding his CKD…
All’s well that ends well.
Stay tuned! Next time we will talk about the bigger picture of this story, and what we can actually learn from it…
Who hasn’t read about letting things go? Letting go of everything that no longer serves you, or letting go of beliefs and values that are no longer yours, or letting go of negative people in your life, and the list goes on and on.
There is only one question I have for you. Did you, maybe, experience some challenges with this practice of letting things go? Because these things didn’t go away at the end of the day? Then, you probably repeated yourself and worked again on letting these things go. But maybe they didn’t go away?
Did you tell the things you wanted to let go where they should go instead?
Probably not. Because it’s not taught. In most of these “letting go” articles, books and workshops, this question is neither discussed nor asked.
Imagine you make a decision to resign from your current job. Then you may already know what you want to do instead. Maybe you have already a new job destination in mind, or you know at least what you are looking for in a new job.
You get the point. Whatever the situation is, you have not only to get clarity on your current state but also on your future state. “From what, into what” is the principle here.
Now, let’s switch from concrete examples like letting go of a job to letting go of less tangible things such as values, beliefs or behaviours. Those things are not tangible in a physical way, but they are existing. Of course. Because we experience them. Because we feel them.
And this intangible area is where most “letting things go” exercises are focused on: letting go of a bad behavior, letting go of a false belief that doesn’t serve you any longer, or letting go of treating a loved one the wrong way, or letting go of negative people who suck all your energy, or letting go of unworthiness, “not being enough,” or “being a victim.” Also here, the list goes on and on…
We know from physics that everything is energy.
And we know that “energy cannot be created or destroyed, it can only be changed from one form to another,” as the famous physician Albert Einstein stated. And that explains why letting things go is only half the equation. You cannot just let go a certain energy. It’s physically not accurate. You also need to know in which energy you want to transform the one you want to let go.
Knowing what you want to let go is only the first step.
Knowing in which form you want to transform the energy you want to let go is the key to success.
Let me give you a few examples.
Transform the feeling of rejection into non-judgement, into a state of love
Let’s think about the feeling of being rejected. Something you want to get rid of. It’s not easy at all as long as you connect another person’s behaviour as a result of your behaviour which makes you feeling rejected by that person. However, it’s much more likely that another person behaves as he or she behaves because of them, not because of you. Their issues turn into certain behaviours that are projected on you. In this particular case, checking out the Four Agreements by Toltec Spirit will help a lot. The second agreement talks about not to take anything personally because “Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won’t be the victim of needless suffering.”
Now having this insight in mind might help you to define the energy in which you want to transform the feeling of rejection. In this case of feeling rejected (I know this feeling very well…), turning the perceived rejection into a sense of non-judgement was my way. And transforming something into the absence of judgment is transforming something into a state of unconditional love. It has taken me years to get there; it only worked when I learned that knowing what to let go was only half the equation.
Transform speciesism into compassion
Another example. Let’s talk about the feeling of speciesism you may want to get rid of. It’s, for example, treating different animals differently which means that one species, your dog or cat, is loved, while another one gets abused, tortured and killed by the animal agriculture industry just because they have been defined, by humans, as “farm animals.” Another example could be to treat a particular group of people, such as immigrants or refugees, differently compared to the familiar groups of people you already know. Also here, the question is, into what you want to transform speciesism. Your choice, of course. But you have to find an answer. If not, there is no way to let go of this energy. Maybe you want to transform speciesism into compassion, or a state of non-judgment or a state of inner peace. That will work. Without any doubt.
Everything is energy. And energy cannot be destroyed; it can only be transformed. So, whatever you want to let go, define into what you want to transform it. And all of a sudden, your “letting things go” exercises have a much better chance to be successful.
Where does my vulnerability come from? Is this simply my soul’s nature? Or are there root causes that led to what I’m experiencing? Honestly, I thought for many years; this simply is who I am.
Then, I learned more and more about how we are born, with lots of love in our hearts and also with a lot of trust. Basic trust. We are born with basic trust. But what happens if you lose your basic trust?
I could connect the dots this year when my spiritual master said to me at the end of a beautiful breathwork week “You are currently very vulnerable. You should build more trust.”
We are all born with unconditional love and with basic trust – when did the damage happen?
I needed a while to understand what she meant. But the more I was processing this, and the more I got deeper into my past, the easier it was for me to identify the root causes in my life that led to a serious damage of my basic trust. I don’t want to go into these situations specifically now and here because I don’t want to blame anybody. I do know that my parents did the best they could, and I also know that their behaviors were based on their level of consciousness at this time. And this is true for all of us. We act based on the level of our current consciousness. As soon as we raise our level of consciousness, we see more clearly how things are connected to each other and what root causes led to which effect. And then, we adjust our behaviors and our attitude, and then things change around us.
Trust: what does it mean? Is it something you believe in or is trust something your feel?
Trust means that you place confidence in a situation or another person. Trust means “to believe in someone’s honesty,” to “believe that someone is a good person.” This is what the dictionaries say, Merriam-Webster and Oxford Dictionaries. It seems that trust is closely connected to what we believe which makes it a pretty fragile construct …
I’d prefer to replace the term “believe” with “feel.” For me, trust is something I feel; and that feeling comes from a soul level. So, I feel trust, or I don’t feel it.
Then, some definitions mix up trust and reliability. I’m not so sure about that. Trust is for me more focused on a person’s overall character, on his or her soul level; whereas reliability is more focused on certain behaviors such as being on time, or keeping deadlines.
I know this is a fine balance. Let me give you an example.
There are people I don’ trust, even if they are on time for each and every meeting. It’s hard to describe that for me, but I feel a lack of trust on a soul level as mentioned above, and that’s already established within the first few seconds of meeting someone. Nevertheless, such a person can be very reliable, and you may be able to build a good relationship. But it will never be a very deep and close relationship.
Then, there are people; I trust on a soul level, although some of their behaviors don’t show a lot of reliability. Also, this trust on a soul level is established within the first few seconds of meeting someone, or even earlier. The potential for a deep relationship is given from the very beginning.
It’s fantastic when these both levels, trust and reliability, the soul level and the behaviors in the physical world, come together. But I learned to distinguish the both, because if I reduce trust to reliability only, I reduce it to what I experience in the physical world only, not what’s existing beyond on a soul level.
Now, let’s look how vulnerability and trust are connected to each other. This is what I learned along my journey:
A highly vulnerable soul is like a tooth with a lack of dental enamel
Every extreme, cold or hot, is painful for a tooth with a lack of dental enamel. And that’s happening to a highly vulnerable soul. Every extreme, positive or negative, goes so much deeper because there is not enough dental enamel to protect the tooth. So, something that’s not a big deal for someone else is painful for the highly vulnerable soul. Even a very positive experience goes so much deeper, much more than for a less vulnerable and less sensitive soul. That can lead to emotional expressions others may have challenges to deal with.
The more you lack trust, the more vulnerable you become
Let’s assume that you have an open heart, that you love deeply and that you are on the way to simply be love, then a lack of trust sheds even more light on your vulnerability. And then, the most important thing is to build trust. Trust in life, trust in yourself, trust in your capabilities, trust in your beautiful self, in your amazing soul. You are a unique individuation of the universe. Perfect already at birth. Perfect from the very beginning. The beauty only needs to unfold, like a butterfly.
Lacking trust, vulnerability doesn’t always show up. It depends on – the love in your heart
The lack of basic trust does not necessarily lead to what you may perceive as a vulnerable soul. There is another way that exists as well. If a person experienced situations that led to a serious damage to their basic trust and unconditional love in their childhood (just as what I described above), and they didn’t focus on opening their heart again, then, you might experience another extreme. And that’s called ignorance, and might be perceived as not caring, as rude, or as cold, also as emotionally not accessible. The reality is that such a person is most of the time neither ignorant nor rude. Instead, their vulnerability is covered by an attitude that is focused on not letting anyone close to their heart under any circumstances. Their focus is to avoid all kinds of hot or cold extremes that hurt the vulnerable tooth in the first place.
So, the highly vulnerable appearance and the appearance that covers its vulnerability have their root cause in a lack of trust, in losing their basic trust.
That’s another topic for another blog post. Just in a few sentences, what I’m working on.
I felt the need to learn as much as I could about my soul: my soul’s origin and my soul energies. That was the first step that helped me to build trust in myself again, in the core of WHO I am, not WHAT I currently am.
Then, I focused more consequently on my breathing and my yoga practice. Every breath can tell my body that the world is a horrible and a dangerous place, or my breath can tell my body that life is beautiful.
And last but not least: Love your animal(s), spend time with your animal(s), and most important: listen and learn from them!
Animals, in my case, two older tom cats who came from an animal shelter, have the incredible capability to build trust in humans again (even if they didn’t experience a lot of good things so far), to love again, to enjoy life again. They don’t stress their mind and think about trust.
Animals simply feel whether they can trust a person or not on a soul level. They don’t analyze and run a mind-based trust check list. No, their souls immediately know whom to trust, who has a good heart, and a good soul. And as animals are already pure love, they only have to rebuild their trust when it was hurt by humans.
Wisdom for humans – connect with animals. There is so much we can learn from them.
How to love. Unconditionally.
How to build trust.
How to live.
As everywhere, you will find a lot of self-appointed “spiritual leaders”, and a very true real spiritual leaders. The difference often is that people in the former group claim to be spiritual leaders, and the leaders in the latter group don’t even mention it. They just do it. They just lead. In a spiritual way.
Before we jump into spiritual leadership, let’s first recap what spirituality is. I wrote about my thoughts on spirituality a few months ago. In a nutshell, and that’s a key element for me, spirituality is not connected to any religion, it’s not a belief system, and it’s nothing you can read in a book and apply.
Spirituality is an ongoing journey of discovery, experience and learning to get to the core of your soul, to liberate your soul, and to live your soul’s purpose. Spirituality builds on the fact that all souls out there are elements of a connected universe, based on the universal principles of love, collaboration, and the law of cause and effect.
Now, when it comes to spiritual leadership, let’s discuss a few defining attributes:
Spiritual leadership is never discretionary. Spiritual leadership requires to walk the talk, and it requires a decision. The decision to lead. The decision to act. The decision to take responsibility. The decision to touch as many souls a possible to drive the necessary change to a peaceful world.
Spiritual leadership requires that you have already found your way to your soul’s dimensions, that you already live your soul’s purpose, that you have already cleared a lot of karmic stuff, wrong perceptions and false beliefs that hindered you so far to walk your talk.
Let me add another thought regarding (false) beliefs: In my experience, the best way is to get rid of ALL beliefs that have been projected on you since birth, such as religious, cultural, and yes, also spiritual beliefs. Because for one simple reason: Beliefs limit your experience in one way or another. So, question every single one, and make a conscious decision whether to get rid of it or not. If you chose to keep a “belief” in your life, it’s no longer a belief. Then, it becomes one of your principles you have decided to live by. And that’s a huge difference because you brought your consciousness into play. This is just one example for questioning what you experience along your (spiritual) journey.
This is why spiritual leadership requires time to grow; and lots of iterations. But first and foremost, spiritual leadership demands that you walk your spiritual journey first. Furthermore, the knowledge that you will never know everything or you will never know “enough” is another prerequisite. The ability to learn new things, to make new experiences that lead to an adjustment of your teachings is relevant for any leader, but it is a prerequisite to becoming an authentic spiritual leader. Because we are all growing continuously.
There is no such thing as “spiritual management.” Souls can be inspired and led, but they cannot be “managed.”
When discussing leadership in general, there is often the debate whether there is a difference between management and leadership or not. When it comes to spiritual leadership, there is one thing crystal clear to me: there is no such thing as “spiritual management.” Management, mostly defined as optimising and improving processes to make them more efficient and effective is not what could be applied in the field of spiritual growth in any way. There is no such thing as a spiritual “process”, as a process how to learn a new language. There is no such thing as five steps to becoming spiritual, and another ten to achieving enlightenment. Whoever tells you “just do this” is not an authentic spiritual leader. Therefore, there is nothing to be “managed.” Instead, living beings can only be led along THEIR journey. And each soul has another spiritual journey, by definition, because every living being is a unique individuation of the universe, of the source; you name it. Souls have different soul origins, and souls are dominated by different soul energies. What works for one soul, might not be the right approach for the other one. Therefore, a spiritual leader has to develop the ability to inspire and to lead these souls along THEIR spiritual journey.
In a nutshell, this is what spiritual leadership means to me:
Spiritual leadership is the capability of equipping living beings to live their soul’s purpose based on the universal principles of love, collaboration, connectedness, and the law of cause and effect.
Now, let’s look at the essential attributes of a spiritual leader.
- Being love: The essence we are all born within our hearts is love. Unconditional love. But for so many souls, love got lost over time, alongside with basic trust. Instead, fear has been developed, and hearts have been closed. You see it all over the place, with human beings and our animal friends. So, a key challenge on each spiritual journey is to remove all blockages that hinder these souls to have access to the love in their hearts again. Spiritual leaders should be very advanced on their own journey to be love. One more thought on this: Being love does not mean that each decision is based on love only. While love should, of course, always be the guiding principle, true leadership also requires, if needed, to make unpleasant decisions to ensuring the best possible outcome for an entire group of students. And that’s actually “being love.”
- Integrity is based on a certain level of ethical values, such as honesty and truth, principles and the ability to live these values and principles on a daily basis. In other words, integrity is how someone behaves when nobody is watching. For me, it’s the foundation of leadership, whether you lead a company, an organisation, or simply yourself. As an example, if you define certain housekeeping rules for your students, and then you break self-defined own rules when situations become difficult, and tough decisions should be made, you put your integrity at risk. This can make or break you in your role as a spiritual leader. In a nutshell, integrity as a spiritual leader is the combination of love and integrity.
- Self-leadership: If you cannot lead yourself, and take the responsibility for your life based on the values and principles you have defined for yourself, how do you want to lead others in any way? Exactly, it won’t work. Self-leadership is a mandatory prerequisite to lead others. Spiritual leaders should have a proven track record of driving successful change in their lives.
- Authenticity has a lot to do with stepping out of the crowd, not trying to be a copy of another leader you may admire. It’s amazing if you could learn from other excellent leaders, but now is the time to step up. Authenticity requires to be completely you, to live your wisdom and truth, and to lead accordingly. Authenticity means to create your footprints, rather than to follow in someone else’s footsteps. This is an essential step in developing own leadership skills, and it’s also a critical step for the leader(s) you currently work with. Great leaders will always encourage you to create your footprints. Because that’s their ultimate goal: to create new leaders, not new followers.
- Creativity and curiosity: Both attributes belong together. True creativity is an essence that flows through the body of a soul and manifests itself in creative outcomes. Often, creative outcomes require a curious mind that always asks one more question to challenge the current state, or to walk a path nobody has walked before, or to try something new, often by connecting existing dots in another way. Spiritual leaders need both, creative approaches for their teachings, and they have to be curious to learn more about their students and the souls they work with, and ultimately, spiritual leaders should always remain curious about the beauty and the creativity of their own soul.
And yes, there is another one, humour!
You might be surprised to find “humour” here as an attribute for spiritual leaders. But you know what?
The greatest spiritual leaders I’m working with have all a great sense of humour. And they are great storytellers.
Getting a teaching wrapped in a joke or a beautiful story is simply priceless.
Because unwrapping the lesson is part of the lesson…
No, this is not another blog post about the outcome of the UK’s EU referendum. My aim is to identify political behaviors that trigger those difficult situations we all have to deal with. And therefore I will use two examples, the AfD example in Germany and the EU referendum in the UK.
In February, I have written a political post about the refugee crisis from a German perspective. Not because I wanted to get into political writing. But because I had to raise my voice at a time when my country was shocked by an increasing number of nationalist-driven crimes against refugees. When I wrote this in February, I couldn’t know how the right-wing party AfD would misuse this situation to drive even more fear, hatred, and negativity across the country.
Unfortunately, their negative, right-wing, and fear-driven campaign including false assertions was pretty successful: they got elected into all three federal parliaments on March 6. Germany was shocked. But it wasn’t such a surprise. Various analysis of the election brought up the truth: 75% of the AfD voters were frustrated people, mostly young men, without a job, more in East than in West Germany. Even worse, they did not know anything about the AfD’s program. And there wasn’t much of a program at this time. Now, we know: this right-wing party is primarily against everything that made Germany a strong country including the EU, and of course, the refugees are blamed for almost everything. And, of course, they had and have no plan what to do in the future.
Being against something is acceptable, even if I’d prefer to have a plan how to solve the issue in the future. But driving fears and not being afraid to “adjust facts” into false assertions is absolutely not acceptable, just to win an election, but not having any idea how to implement the campaign’s goal. We experienced this behavior in March in Germany, and the UK is still experiencing the results of this behavior regarding the EU referendum.
I love many places in the UK, London, England, and especially Scotland. I have friends in all parts of the country, and I spend a couple of weeks each year in the UK, for business and also privately. I’m always following politics in the UK as I do it in Germany.
Honestly, I didn’t expect the Brexit campaign to win. For three reasons:
One, I could never build any trust in the figureheads of the campaign, especially in Boris Johnson. For me, it was way too transparent from the very beginning that he had a personal agenda. How could the previous Mayor of London, who was leading a capital which was always based on the contribution of various cultures including many global enterprises that have chosen London for their European head offices, being against the EU?
Two, because I watched their campaign video very carefully. I was sure that most people would identify the lack of facts and the very thin ice they were skating on. And the very thin ice was misusing immigration as the key topic to drive people’s fear, to win the referendum.
Three, I listened to a presentation of a professor of European Law, explaining all the legal issues, all the advantages, and the problems and also what it would really mean to leave the EU.
Don’t get me wrong: The EU is far away from being perfect, and no other large organisation is perfect. And the EU made bad decisions as any other organisation or government did as well. But the initial purpose of the EU is right, and the benefits can be seen across Europe, including the UK.
What can we learn from these political happenings that seem to be patterns that just come over and over again in different forms and shapes?
- A referendum in a parliamentary democracy, especially with such an essential question, has special risks:
What would the result be in Germany, asking the same question? Not sure, it could easily end up in a similar constitutional crisis. Because such a question regarding the EU is one of the most complex questions, you can ever ask. Why do we expect that every person in a country with the right to vote is also able to understand the problem in its complexity and depth, and its impact on various areas of people’s life?
It’s different in a direct democracy. Ask Swiss people. They have to answer a referendum every other month. They know the process, they know that they have to read a lot of stuff (and they get the material) to make a decision. They know that voting is a right AND a duty.
- Politicians are not to blame alone. Because politicians are just a mirror of our societies. Campaigning with an “adjusted truth” just to win an election or a referendum is just the same illness we experience in so many corporations. Decisions, even if facts have to be “adjusted” are made just to serve a short-term purpose, e.g. to fix a quarter, to maximize the shareholder value, even if the decisions make no sense from a long-term, strategic perspective. It’s just the same illness, just in different forms and shapes.
- How can a call for political isolation ever be a solution in a deeply connected world with global challenges?
Make your own opinion, and ask yourself this question whatever the election or the campaign might be.
Our thoughts impact our actions. Our actions determine our results.
If our thoughts are fearful and negative, our actions will reflect this, and negative, fear-driven results will manifest.
If our thoughts are compassionate, integrating and collaborative, our actions will reflect this, and more positive results will manifest. In our lives, and in our environment.
“As the world’s fears increase and humanity’s actions reflect these fears, allow your inner flame to burn brighter.”
Develop love and compassion within your heart, as a state of being.
Develop a positive vision of your future success, based on your soul’s purpose, and act accordingly.
And don’t forget that clarity and change often come when there are chaos and confusion.
Having said this, I wish all my friends in the UK a positive outcome, for all of us!
You may say “Oh, was he a famous horse, a racing horse, or a showjumping horse?” No. He was not a racing horse, and not a show jumping horse. Luckily. He lived at an animal sanctuary, at Tower Hill Stables Animals Sanctuary, in Essex, UK, rescued a few years ago from slaughter.
Mr. Rupert’s life mattered. Because life matters.
There are no species that are more important than others. But we currently experience on this planet that this is not the case. Not at all. Animal suffering is a huge issue on this planet right now. They are still considered as “things” that can be bought, owned, sold to make money with them, or thrown away when no longer needed. For horses, it seems that as soon as they don’t provide enough “value” to their “owners”, they have a high probability to be sold to the slaughterhouse, or to be abandoned. Tower Hill Stables Animal Sanctuary, a home for about 400 previously unwanted animals, led by my friend Fiona Oakes, can share those tragic stories about every single horse she is taking care of.
Mr. Rupert was a very special horse. A very big horse. A very gentle, calm, and wise soul. Always in balance. He was born into the body of a white Percheron, which is one of the biggest horse races on the planet. Fiona Oakes rescued Mr. Rupert four years ago from slaughter. As you can imagine, some people who want to make money with animals, had the great idea to sell this beautiful horse that’s about 1.000 kg plus as a young boy (!) to the slaughterhouse. Lots of money to make compared to a horse that’s just half the weight of Mr. Rupert; if you don’t care about the life of an animal.
If you do care about animals, you would never even consider selling your animal to the slaughterhouse.
Luckily, Mr. Rupert had a guardian angel surrounding and protecting him. His guardian angel was and is Fiona Oakes. As soon as he was rescued by her; as soon as he arrived at Tower Hill Stables, he was safe. Finally, he could inhale and exhale without anxiety. Now, as he was safe, he could simply enjoy his horse life with all the other horses, with pigs, cows, sheep, turkeys, chickens, cats, and dogs.
Why do I write about Mr. Rupert as he wasn’t even “my” horse?
I write about him because all life matters.
I write about him because we are all connected to each other. And by the way, this is not a “belief system”, this is simply physics. On a quantum level, we are all electro-magnetic beings.
I write about him because nobody “owns” an animal; it’s just our outdated “humans rule the world” legal system that declares an animal a thing, which is a prerequisite to “own” it and to “use” it.
I write about him because this big boy left huge horse “hoof” imprints on my heart.
I write about him because animals like Mr. Rupert wouldn’t live without animal sanctuaries, without fascinating human beings like Fiona Oakes, who sacrifice EVERYTHING for the animals, to provide them with all they need to live their lives on their terms. And that’s not a “benefit”; it is simply their right.
I will never forget the moment when I met Mr. Rupert for the first time. Such an impressive, big, big horse. His head was as big as my upper body, and I’m not a small, but a tall person. I will never forget his incredible tender horse kisses and his curious horse tongue that was always checking out if there were any treats for him in my pockets. Whenever I visited the sanctuary, Mr. Rupert walked me around in his calm, majestic, and totally relaxed manner.
When the new stable was built, and finally a proper roof could be created, it was Mr. Rupert who presented it to me as you can see here on the left. Some of you may remember Mr. Rupert’s roof appeal when he was raising money for him and his horse friends for the new roof.
Why did Mr. Rupert die? He was not older than ten or twelve years, way too young for a horse
Well, Mr. Rupert was lame on May 19th, seen by the vet the same day. At this point, it was not certain what was causing the issue.
On May 21st, Rupert went down. “Given his size and his weight of about 1.000 kg plus, this is a serious issue in case of lameness. The vet suggested we contact the fire rescue services” said Fiona Oakes. The special animal crew from South Woodham Ferrers and their Unimog vehicle and more crews came to bring Mr. Rupert back on his feet. Four hours later Rupert could stand without the help of the lift. Woohoo!
It was planned to make x rays the following day. But it turned out that the mobile x rays were too small for Mr. Rupert. So, he had to be brought to the vet’s hospital for the x rays and further investigations. But let’s tell Fiona: “…and we finally got him on the lorry. This is his only chance – his size is a massive consideration in this matter. He is a large horse, and I don’t think the phrase ‘no hoof, no horse’ could ever have applied more. We have had many heavy horses in the past and have learned the hard way you must keep them on their feet. They simply cannot afford to go down on a prolonged and regular basis.”
May 22nd: Mr. Rupert has made it to the Vet and was being x-rayed. He now had access to ‘state of the art’ veterinary treatments. That was his chance! He had the best chance anybody could offer him. And Fiona and her partner Martin did EVERYTHING to get him there. But that didn’t save his life.
On May 24th, Mr. Rupert passed away owing to very unfortunate circumstances
Those circumstances were, for instance, not acting fast enough, not considering his massive size when it came to the dosage of medication, and not listening to Fiona who knows Mr. Rupert in an out, and who is taking care of horses for over 40 years, including lots of those big horses.
“His foot was poulticed, and the abscess had already tracked up rather than down and come out through the Coronet Band. They were hoping this would continue and they Farrier could drill a hole under the foot to get the rest out from the bottom of the hoof, but they didn’t act fast enough, and the infection had spread” as Fiona shared on facebook. The infection had spread into his pedal bone which caused him, as you can imagine, terrible pain.
Fiona Oakes fought to get him to the vet. She fought to get the right lorry for him, and she fought for his treatment. “Honestly, it’s like they see horses as items of value based on what they are worth in terms of human remuneration – not that they are precious lives who are equal and deserve to be treated so.”
Unfortunately, she is so right with her observations. This is why Mr. Rupert’s life and his death matter. I guess his soul has more work to do on the other side of the rainbow bridge, educating other souls on what matters. Basic principles such as unconditional love, collaboration instead of competition, and understanding connectedness and oneness, and the rule of cause and effect.
Mr. Rupert’s atomic body died. But his spirit, his energy, his consciousness are still around to drive change.
Links and ways to help the animals:
Fiona Oakes is a world-class vegan marathon runner, holds several Guinness world records
Her biggest challenge is happening right now: The Four Desert Challenge