By Melissa Cohen

From Suffering to Empowerment

It was mid December 2012 and the weight of perfect presents, money, family, death, and expectations was laced in between the jolly holiday feelings and songs of the season. Then, Boom!! Pow!$#% An explosive phone call and huge blow out with my sister had my mind caught in what I like to call, the hamster wheel of hell.  Have you ever had that happen? A thought or string of thoughts that keep running, racing like a firestorm through your head?  The same thought over and over and over and over again.  You may have momentary breaks from the cycle, but they are short lived. It’s as if you selected this as your favorite tune in your play list so it plays on auto repeat, with only an occasional commercial break. Even the joyful things seem to have a heavy background noise of this plaguing thought. You can’t believe you are in the situation. You are powerless to change it.  All the options of how to deal with it seem horrible. How can you get out of yourself and climb to some level of understanding?  All of your resources for understanding are out of reach. How can you press the stop button? 

It was from this deep pit of mental anguish that I asked the universe for help. I wanted a solution that would result in love and understanding. I wanted my feelings of powerlessness and despair to go away.  I wanted a kind, loving solution that I could live with.  I didn’t know exactly what I needed or how I could get what I wanted, but I trusted that something would show up to help me.

The solution that came to mind was a retreat.  Retreat, that’s exactly what I wanted to do, get away and clear my head!!  What kind of retreat?  I wasn’t sure.  Because of family and other obligations, I only had time from Dec 27th to just after New Years for this getaway. I searched the internet for health retreats, for self-help/personal growth retreats, for anything that would fit into the timeline that I had available and nothing was fitting or available. I decided that things weren’t working out because there was something else that would arise and I would just wait until the last minute to figure out where I would go. 

I was up late one night and on a whim decided to use the StumbleUpon app on my iphone.  I love StumbleUpon because it gives you random articles and items from subjects you’ve selected. This short article about something having to do with self-help/happiness came up.  The article referenced Lester Levinson for something. I had never heard of Lester before so I decided to look him up.  I got off my phone, got on my computer, and ended up finding the Sedona Method.  I loved the information about Lester Levinson and his Releasing Technique. Although Lester died in 1994, his techniques lived on and were taught by Hale Dwoskin.  Releasing sounded like just what I needed.  When I clicked on the Events button, there it was, a “releasing” retreat in Sedona, Arizona over New Years that fit the time frame I needed with only one extra conflicting day.  I figured I could make arrangements and allowances for that one day.  I immediately booked the retreat because I knew this was what I had been asking for. I knew this was the law of attraction in action.

To the surprise of the people I met at the retreat, I had not read any of the books or materials relating to the Sedona Method other than a brief article online.  I really knew nothing about what I was getting into. I just had faith that this was where I needed to be. I figured that if the retreat wasn’t right for me, something else would show up in its place. 

Although the Sedona Method processes were foreign and a little strange to me, I opened my mind and accepted that this was something I needed to embrace. Hale Dwoskin’s kind, loving, jovial, patient style and group exercises guided me to a great feeling of love and connection with the universe. Nothing had changed in my world, yet everything had changed in my world.  My perception had changed.  My mind was at peace and I knew that my situation with my sister, and many other things in my life, would be okay.

Not only were Hale and the Sedona Method what I needed, Sedona itself was what I needed.  I went for hikes every morning before the retreat started. The spectacular otherworldly beauty of Sedona alone was spirit lifting and inspiring.  The incredible feelings of love, connection, peace, and mental ease that I felt in Hale’s class were enhanced while I was out and about in Sedona. It was on one of my fabulous morning hikes that I encountered the stone hearts on my path that really transformed my life. I have a page titled, How hearts started that gives the details of my experience of finding these first hearts should you want to know more about that experience. The précis version is that I was so inspired by these hand placed stone hearts that I started seeing hearts in other things around me.  Love WAS all around me and I decided the best way to impart this feeling and understanding to my daughter was to show her and not tell her.  But how? An inspiration came to visibly document the law of attraction with these found, manifested hearts in nature in order to make a book for her 18th birthday.  I would show her that love is everywhere, that what you focus on increases, and illustrate the law of attraction in action.

Although my suffering about my conflict with my sister resolved itself because of the Sedona Method Retreat, my empowerment really came from consciously applying the law of attraction by photographically documenting hearts once I returned home.  Seeing the visible proof of what I deliberately manifested, what I deliberately put my attention to and brought forth, has been extremely helpful and empowering. In addition, the lessons I’ve learned from the thousands of hearts that have come to me is more powerful than I could have imagined. All this theory and no real tangible proof can leave room for a lot of doubt. Talking about something is very different than doing it, feeling it, seeing it, and recognizing the connection. I can talk, talk, talk about all of this law of attraction stuff, but for me, being able to quantify it and look back on it has been invaluable. I know I can make all of the difference in my life through choosing my point of attention, my point of attraction.

Please note that I am not suggesting that anyone follow my path.  You really need to follow your own path as if it were an exercise/sport.  I love volleyball, hiking, kayaking, and dance.  You may love soccer, basketball, music, bowling, walking, shopping or going to the gym. (Yep, shopping is a sport for some people!! J) All of these paths can lead to better health.  One is only better than the other if it is something you resonate with and want to do. There are many different paths to help with understanding if that is what you are seeking. Check out my reading/audio of things that were helpful to me.  If one of them jumps out at you, that might just be what you need as your next step.

Happy Manifesting!