This is the fourth in a series of posts called About Dianna, which looks at my upbringing and life influences. You can find the series of posts below:
Shadow is not bad. Shadow is the ego driven part of your identity that is scared of weakness, pain, and being forgotten, so it triggers your fears, your angry defensiveness, and your pride. Understanding this, and overcoming it, is literally an act of turning shadow into light. In Jungian psychology, the shadow can also be seen as the unconscious aspect of self - the unknown. It is the hidden parts of ourselves we would like to remain hidden. In shamanism, we journey into the lower world aspect of the Otherworld in order to meet our shadow self, face it, accept it, and conquer it. This is the hero's journey in every fantasy story (think of Luke Skywalker walking into that tree trunk to face the dark side of all he could become) but those stories are derived from this shamanic understanding that is as old as time.
As a shadow worker, what I strive to do is help people see their shadows in the "mirror", recognise it, accept it, love it as part of what makes them a whole, deep individual, and that's when miracles happen: the shadow is no more. The shadow becomes light because you have shone light on it. All shadows can be transformed from dark to light; some more easily than others.
Can angels help with shadow work? Hell, yes! I have a group of archangels I work very closely with in all my work, and they include Archangel Michael, Archangel Raziel, Archangel Azriel, and Archangel Jeremiel.
When I first started consciously working with angels, I had no idea who to call - I just called Archangels Michael and Gabriel - Gabriel because he'd visited me in the past, and Michael because I felt like I could and should. (And actually, the more I call on Michael, the more like an old friend he feels - he has a very loving energy.) Following that, other angels showed up more strongly (like the named three above) and I'm certain it's because of the shadow work that I can incorporate into my readings and channelling. For those who don't know (and this is only a summary) Archangel Raziel guards mystery schools, magick, and ancient, secret knowledge; Archangel Azriel is the gatekeeper of souls at death; and Archangel Jeremiel is the recorder and keeper of past lives and past life lessons.
One of the reasons I hesitated for years to work with angels was because of this stereotype of "light and fluffy" that seems to surround them. I didn't relate to it. There was never any talk of the importance of the shadow whenever I read about lightwork, and no lightworker ever seemed to mention the shadow - at least never in a good light. Yet, it's only by recognising it in a good light that it can be transformed.
Angels, to me, have never shied away from the dark spaces of our third dimension - why would they? That's where they're needed the most. Angels are the piercing hard clarity of light; steel; the edge of a blade; and they have definite warrior energy (in the sense that they have a mission that must reach its destination, which lies in showing is the way to the 5th dimension).
My first memory (at the age of one) was of a mix of dark and light: me, stumbling as a one-year-old through a dark, damp cave that smelled of earth and magic; that then looked like earth and magic when I saw the stalagmites and stalactites that protruded from every angle. It was stunning. From that moment, dark and light were not separate for me. When they merge in union, the most beautiful rays can be seen.
With shadow work we travel from the lower world up, just like the stalagmite, working through our darker energies to find out how we can transform our fears, anger, envy, and deep hurts into something peaceful.
With light work we travel from the higher realms down, just like the stalactite, wrapping love and positivity around our spiritual selves, which offer a guiding light for us to trust in as we traverse into the unknown of the future.
Where they meet in the middle is where we begin to heal.
This is the third in a series of posts called About Dianna, which looks at my upbringing and life influences. You can find the series of posts below:
My journey with angels began when I was very little. My grandmother - a devout Roman Catholic - taught me about guardian angels when I was as young as two. She taught me how to say a prayer every night before bed to thank the angels for the day, and to send blessings to those I loved. Whether anyone believes in angels or not, I found this a very comforting, sweet habit to nourish. (Who doesn't love wishing nice things for the people who mean a lot to them?)
I can't remember if I "felt" my guardian angel when I was little. I do remember my spirit guide, and I quickly distinguished him as a guide and not an angel, even at that young age, although I'm not sure how I did. He just had a different energy, and I remember always knowing he was my spirit guide - a tall, Native American man with long, black hair he wore in a plait, and no wings - no wings at all. (The wings are an important element when you're two!) He had a great smile, though, and was so very wise.
Despite my grandmother teaching me how to say a goodnight prayer, it was not a habit I continued - like a lot of kids, I stopped doing it from about 4 or 5 years old. My mother was a believer that I should choose my own beliefs for myself when I was older, not be thrown into one (Catholicism) at five years old, and as I grew up, I don't think I ever really dwelt on the thought of angels too much.
At the age of about six, I fell off a rocky ledge by the sea and plunged probably about ten to fifteen feet into the water below. Rocks jutted out along the sea bed. I couldn't properly swim, and as I sank under the water, I remember looking up and seeing the sun's rays shining beautifully above the surface. I should have been scared, but I was only thinking about how beautiful those rays looked, and then I heard a voice telling me everything was absolutely fine. It was a deep, male voice that sounded different to my spirit guide's voice. It sort of reverberated around me the way a dolphin's sound would if you're in the water with it. It repeated, "Everything's absolutely fine," and I felt this really deep calm steal over me. I was still, instinctively, trying to doggy-paddle to the surface, but I felt nothing but peace. The next thing I knew, I was being hauled out of the water by one of my dad's friends who ran me to the shore. My legs were all torn up from the rocks beneath the sea - they had to be in bandages for two weeks.
Only much, much later, did it occur to me it might have been an angel. It was something, anyway. I didn't think too much on it in the years that followed, but I never forgot it.
When I was a young adult and in the throes of my early spiritual journey, a friend and I went to hear Doreen Virtue speak about angels, and indigo and crystal children, near Hyde Park in London - this must have been around 2004. I remember there was a full moon eclipse that night over the Embankment - it was stunning!
At the talk itself, I didn't particularly feel angels present (not that I really knew what that felt like other than the incident when I fell from the rocks). But I did note how magical the eclipse felt, and how much fun I was having with my friend on a rare night out.
A few weeks later, I was in the midst of emotional and spiritual chaos. My life was a mess - relationships, work, the lot. I was being psychically attacked - I could feel it, but didn't know where it was coming from - so I devised a spell to find out the source of the attacks (I did find out), and during that time, I awoke one night to a presence in my room - a presence that introduced itself as Archangel Gabriel. In my half-awake, half-asleep state, he told me (he appeared to me as a "he") that he was going to fix the wounds in my body so I could also heal spiritually and continue my work (I won't go into what those wounds were.) I think I said, okay, and thank you, and then eventually, I drifted back off into deep sleep.
That was the first time I'd ever had an encounter with an angel where I could picture the angel and knew it was an angel. In the days that followed, I saw further angels with giant swords - warrior angels - standing guard on the road outside my flat where I lived. (This, by the way, was the inspiration for my portrayal of angels in The Witching Pen series - they have never appeared to me as "light, love, and fluff", but as all-powerful, daunting beings you simply wouldn't mess with in a million years.) I was told that in response to the psychic attacks, they'd been sent to protect me. I was twenty-four years old and in a state of overwhelm, and for better or worse, the overwhelm was too much, and that was the beginning of my retreat from the spiritual work I had been doing. I needed a break, and I needed to not see "beings" around every corner (which I did because I've always been a natural empath, and psychically in-tune with other layers of existence).
Because I was emotionally hurting from real-world stuff, my energetic body was wide open to all sorts of things, and I did not have the strength or the know-how to fix it. And in all honesty, I didn't feel worthy of working with angels - I was that girl who loved vampires, werewolves, witches and wizards, magick, fairies, and so on - I loved horror movies. (I still do!) I was working intensely with British, pagan-focused witchcraft at the time and incorporating my shamanic knowing into it (shamanic witchcraft). I've always been about working with the shadow self and transmuting all that dark stuff inside us. How could I possibly work with angels considering all of that? (Note that at this time, I knew nothing about the connection between angelic beings and shamanism - Google didn't exist then, the internet was young, information was scarce, and I'd always associated angels with my grandmother and Roman Catholicism, which was in direct contradiction to the witchcraft and shamanic studies I'd been undertaking.)
So, over the years, living a more material life concerning finances and settling down and making relationships work, took over. And when I say years, I mean fifteen years. I still walked in the world of magick in many ways, but my involvement in it was nowhere near the extent it had been.
I did miss it. A lot. In many ways, I felt spiritually amputated. But I ignored it.
Life did its thing. I had a family; I wrote books; I grew older; people I loved passed on.
At the end of 2018, something changed. I caught the flu, which was not a flu at all, but an awakening - some kind of activation code on the tail of an urge - a need - I could no longer deny, to re-enter the spiritual world in the way I had walked in it before. So, I did. I had to. I am back, and so are angels. I have come full circle (or perhaps it's a spiral).
Despite my angel encounters above, I never thought I'd be channelling angels for others. They seem so ... light. And I will always have a strong love of the dark and gothic. Thing is though, light shines most brightly in the darkest places. Darkness knows how to hold a space, and be a vessel. (And now I know about the angelic-shamanic connection.)
But my knowledge on angels was very limited. I needed to start studying angels so I could get a sense of the different energies trying to communicate with me. I decided to go back to the "beginning" and looked up Doreen Virtue (after all, that night of the eclipse with Doreen Virtue led to the visitation from Gabriel in the weeks that followed, I am sure - tapping into the energy of a thing can be enough to bring that thing to you, such is the way of energy work). It turned out she'd done 180 on her career path, was no longer speaking to angels, and had turned her back on the "new age". So, I sat back and wondered what to do with this brick wall I'd encountered. It was completely by accident that I then found Charles Virtue (her son) a week later - this was good. His training programmes were the kind of thing I was looking for and it was a place to start from where I'd stopped in 2004.
Since then (in 2019), I have also received my Munay-Ki rites, passed down from the shamans of the Andes and Amazon, into which angelic energy is strongly entwined. Since beginning this long, in-depth rite of passage, I have clearly begun to see how angels work with earth energies and star beings, and have for tens of thousands of years and before; and I can now disassociate them from (or merge them with) my childhood Roman Catholic roots so much more easily, and connect them with my older shamanic and starseed roots. Angels are beyond all religion.
And here I am, bringing the messages of angels to you - weird world! Wonderful world.
This is the second in a series of posts called About Dianna, which looks at my upbringing and life influences. You can find the series of posts below:
I remember having dreams from as young as I am able to hold memories in this life. From the age of two, I remember speaking to a man who I considered to be my very best friend. He had long, dark hair that he wore in a plait; he was tall; and he had a kind, wise face that I knew very well. He would help me with my dreams, and also with the odd entities that "hung around" the shadows of my room. I called them "shadow men".
I would often - almost always - dream of snakes. They were small, black snakes that would engulf my whole body, but I was never scared of them because they were also my friends. I could feel their safety; their protection; and my dream-friend would tell me they were my guardians. He would tell me that if I ever felt scared or in trouble, all I had to do was call on the snakes and I would be safe.
I did call on them. Especially during the times the shadow men came. Right up until the age of about six or seven, I would see "shadows" in the shadows of my room at night. Not every night, but they came often enough. I always felt them before I saw them (clairsentience). My skin would prick, and I'd feel apprehensive; I found myself sliding under the bed sheet because if I couldn't see them, maybe they wouldn't see me. But I inevitably found myself peeking out from above my covers .... yes, there they were (clairvoyance). I would go through all the "logic" scenarios in my mind: they are just shadows cast from furniture (that's what all the adults said). Except they weren't, because the furniture was not the shape of men like the shadows were, and the shadows that the shadow men gave were a shade darker than any other shadow in my room.
And then, I would hear them whispering (clairaudience). There were always about three or four of them, and I knew they were whispering about me. I could never understand what they were saying, but my sense was always that they wanted to take me away - they felt I was owed to them, or something. So, I called on the snakes. I would squeeze my eyes shut, and visualise the snakes, and they always came - straight away. My dream-friend always came with the snakes, too. Together they protected me, and the shadow men never touched me. They could never come close; they were bound to the edges of my room. With snakes all over me, and my dream-friend whispering soothing words in my ear, I would fall asleep.
As I grew up, I began to understand that I carried snake medicine into this world from a previous life (or lives). I also came to realise this dream-friend was a spirit guide, and I understood him to be Native American. Of which exact tribe, I have no idea - I never even learnt his name, although he spoke to me about other things. I remember once, when I was around twelve, I got a bunch of books out of the library about Native American cultures throughout history to see if I could recognise anything in it, and I would also scour the photographs to see if I could find him in all the faces (I saw him very clearly - I was sure I could pick him out of a photograph), but I never did see him.
He stayed with me right up until I was 19 years old, and then he told me that, sadly, he had to leave me now. I never got a chance to ask why, but when he left, it felt different - it felt final. That was the last time I saw him until very recently (which is a whole different story).
During all those years until I was 19, it became that I could speak to him in my waking hours as well as my dreaming hours, and it also became that the dream journeying I naturally did in my sleep as a child continued as I got older, first through leaving my body as I day-dreamed, and then through my learning the skill of conscious lucid dreaming (all of this was before I knew what shamanic practices were, or the intricacies of Native American spiritual culture). When I was about 20, and after I'd begun to read the Tarot for others, I happened upon a book during my spiritual venture that discussed how African (not Native American) shamans could dream journey by rocking. A huge penny dropped because this was exactly how I had journeyed during my day-dreaming hours as a child: sitting cross-legged on the floor, rocking back and forth. I felt elated that I could recognise myself in this!
That was the beginning of my research into all aspects of shamanism, from all cultures - Native American to Celtic. During that period (the year was 2000), I met a man called Ivan McBeth whose lessons in Toltec shamanism changed my life irrevocably. It was a healing journey that took me through a death and rebirth rite of passage and initiated me into the "path of heart" as a shamanic warrior. It remains to this day one of my proudest achievements because to be shamanic is a process and something you'll do for the rest of your life once you've committed to it - you can't not, because your perspective of life is altered beyond measure.
I've never called myself a "shaman", but I have and do incorporate some of its practices, and the shamanic way influences all I do; more than that, it helped solidify all my meetings with my spirit guide as a child. I now know my spirit guide was someone I knew in a past life (more than one) and also my twin flame for our lives literally weave in and out of each other's. I know I've been a spirit guide to him in some of his incarnations, just as he has been to me in some of mine. I know that when I cross over at the end of this life, I'll see him again at the gateway. I have not ruled out the possibility that we are even perhaps aspects of each other's higher selves in various lifetimes. I am not Native American in this life, but I have flashes of more than one past life when I have been. Perhaps it's not a bad thing that they are just flashes rather than full-on memories ... truth is, I think those full-on memories would hurt too much.
Shamanic principles, due to all the above I suppose, have always formed a basis for my spiritual work, and the way I live my life (or at least I've tried - the latter, certainly, is hard at times in England 2019). But shamanic influences span worldwide and include ancient Celtic practices, and one of the things I have always felt drawn to ever since moving to England is its Arthurian myths and legends, and fairy lore. It's one of the reasons I grew a love of British, pagan-focused witchcraft. There are some similarities among all shamanic cultures, so in many ways, I have found a spiritual home in the lush, green valleys of this enriched island.
Due to my study of, my work with, and my connection to shamanism - and how it was birthed in snakes and shadows, if you will - I have never shied away from shadow work, or the shadow self within. How we work through our shadow and transform it into light can be seen in fantasy fiction and the hero's journey. Perhaps it helped, though, that I also believed in angels for they, too, were in my life as a child and young adult, though they were far more distant and elusive than my spirit guide. Angels have a long, strong connection to shamanic cultures around the world, notably (that we know best of) to the Incas in Peru. They were considered by many tribes to be 'bird people' or 'star people'. More recently, during receiving the Munay-Ki Rites (into which angelic energy features quite heavily) I have finally managed to merge my connection with shamanism to my connection with angels, and it's beautiful - it's as if all the pieces of my life are slotting into place. You can read about my journey with angels here.
This is the first in a series of posts called About Dianna, which looks at my upbringing and life influences. You can find the series of posts below:
I was born in Salvador, in Bahia (Brazil), and spent my early childhood in Macau. By the age of ten, I had lived in three different countries, travelled to even more, spoken two different languages, experienced three different cultures (tasted the cuisines of them all), and experienced the energies of two different religions - Roman Catholicism, and Buddhism - both amid the backdrop of colourful Chinese folklore. I was born near the sea, lived by the sea in my early years, and in 2016, chose to live near the sea again. Where waves meet shore, and where ocean meets horizon, have always been portals between worlds for me.
My first memory is from the age of one when I was taken into a crystal cave filled with stalagmites and stalactites in Portugal - this would have been in 1979. At the centre of this cave lay Snow White, carved out of ice, in her coffin, having just bitten her apple. I can still remember the feel of the cave - the coolness on my skin.
Snow White would also be the first film I ever saw at the cinema at the age of three; apples and snakes would hold interesting meaning for my young self, too - the themes of my life were being laid out before me, to help me better understand my path: the search for hidden knowledge, transcendence through death, crystalline light, love conquering all, the real meaning of a kiss as the living breath, and spiritual transformation. (Many of us are shown our "themes" by Spirit in such ways, in the hopes the symbology will lead to a recognition of our life path.)
Was it the rich diversity of culture in my early years that made me empathic, sensitive, creative, imaginative? Was it nature or nurture that meant I could access my memories from such an early age, or that I dream-journeyed as a child, and conversed with my spirit guide before I knew what a spirit guide was? Whichever it was, my mind was wide open from before I could speak. I was always going to wander down an alternative life path, because I would always be a seeker of "more" than could be seen; of what I perceived to be "truth".
In my lifetime, I've had a variety of spiritual experiences involving various spiritual beings, those crossed over, fairies and fairy magick, dragons, and more. This inevitably led to studying and training in a variety of different spiritual modalities which included shamanism with Ivan McBeth, crystal healing with Suzanne Sedgeman, who was the first person to introduce me to the concept of Atlantis as an entity outside the words of Plato; flower and vibrational essences (Bach Remedies with Healingherbs Ltd and Indigo Essences with Ann Callaghan), and most recently, I have been working with angels (finally!). I'm also very much called, at this present time, to work with Atlantean crystal energies, guided by an Atlantean Priestess in the Otherworld, and combining these teachings with my natural shamanic pathway - all while I undertake receivership of the Munay-Ki Rites over the space of many months (now completed). It sounds like a lot, but all the modalities are connected - duality is a state of mind and life is a spiral in which we never stop learning.
As a young child, growing up in the multicultural way I did, I never knew division. All the differences I saw worked as a whole. Perhaps that was in part to do with my innate perception; or perhaps it was to do with the vague flashes of memory I have of what we call Atlantis, quite a few of my Native American past lives, a very interesting (and harrowing) one of an ancient Egyptian past life, and one or two of my starseed home. Every week, they are starting to feel less like separate lifetimes, and more like one ... long ... life. I'd like to help everyone realise that same kind of wholeness for themselves, whether through my writing, healing, channelling, or other, because it exists in a very real way. Oneness forms the basis for all I do.