A Day in a Life: The Sweeping Breath

In my upcoming book, The Recapitulation Diaries, Year One: The Man in the Woods, I describe learning the sweeping recapitulation breath, a Magical Pass. As frightening memories began making themselves known I used it often to clarify those memories as they emerged from the foggy past, as well as to calm the central nervous system. In both instances it was very effective.

In her book The Sorcerers’ Crossing Taisha Abelar writes about learning this recapitulation magical pass as well, first from her mentor Clara and then later from a man she immediately recognized as the master sorcerer. This master sorcerer gave her some valuable advice. When he found her talking to herself while doing the breathing pass, he suggested that she wasn’t breathing properly. She describes this meeting and the suggestion that she breathe like this:

Set an intent and breathe in the morning light

“He inhaled deeply as he gently turned his head to the left. Then he exhaled thoroughly as he smoothly turned his head to the right. Finally, he moved his head from his right shoulder to the left and back to the right again without breathing, then back to the center.”

The master sorcerer also told Taisha: “When exhaling, throw out all the thoughts and feelings you are reviewing. And don’t just turn your head with your neck muscles. Guide it with the invisible energy lines from your midsection. Enticing those lines to come out is one of the accomplishments of recapitulation.”

He went on to explain that “… just below the navel was a key center of power, and that all body movements, including one’s breathing, had to engage this point of energy. He suggested I synchronize the rhythm of my breathing with the turning of my head, so that together they would entice the invisible energy lines from my abdomen to extend outward into infinity.”

Find the key of power

Doing the sweeping recapitulation breath is not all that difficult. In every instance of reading about it I found variations, so it was often confusing, but I stuck with what Chuck had originally taught me, taking the liberty to change the way I did it to suit the intent I set with each sitting. Often I sat for only a few minutes, but I was just as likely to sit and do the sweeping breath for as long as an hour or more at a time.

Once one gets the hang of it and lets the thinking mind go, without getting caught in wondering if one is doing it right, it automatically begins doing its magic. Chuck always told me I couldn’t do it wrong, and indeed in reading and hearing all the many ways in which it was and is taught, it seems to me that just setting the intent and actually doing it is enough. As Chuck says, it’s the intent that matters.

Breathe out the past

So today I leave you with this sweeping breath. Set an intent. Find that key center of power and begin breathing from there. And then see what happens. I found it to be a most magical practice indeed!

Setting intent, finding breath, and sweeping away, I offer you all love and good wishes on your journeys, as I return to the last few days of editing my book.

The Sorcerers’ Crossing is available for purchase through our STORE. Excerpts used in this blog are found on page 132.

#774 Suffering & Awe

Written by Jan Ketchel with a channeled message from Jeanne Ketchel.

The day after Hurricane Irene tramped through the Northeast, downgraded to a tropical storm by the time it got to us, dawns calm and sunny. We fared better than expected. All of the many ponds along our rural road overflowed and we were landlocked for most of the day on our mountaintop. But we didn’t lose power as our neighbors down the road did nor did we lose any trees. We still have internet service so I can send out this blog, and although the road to civilization is still flooded at one end we can wind our way to the main highway in the other direction. The freakiest part of the storm, for me, came last evening—after the rains had stopped—when a barrage of powerful wind gusts plowed through here, lasting for several hours, ominous and fierce in intensity. That’s when the trees came down at the other end of the road and our neighbors lost power. It was as if nature was warning us to not fall back into complacency, suggesting that yes, we had indeed gotten off the hook this time, but don’t take it too lightly. Perhaps this storm was all just preparation for the bigger ones to come.

From one end...

In the midst of the fury of those intensely battering gusts an enormous double rainbow spanned the sky. From the field across the road we gathered with neighbors to take in the full breadth of this wondrous spectacle of nature—just another reminder that we really have no control over what happens in the world outside of us. I took the rainbow as a sign to just keep hanging in there, stay with the awe of what life offers, ominous and wondrous both, and that everything will be fine in the end.

As I write this morning, I am reminded of two things related to the storm and to channeling these messages from Jeanne. Chuck and I spoke of these two things as we went through the lashing of Irene. Several years ago, perhaps as far back as 2005, Jeanne had warned of big changes to come, that weather related and natural events would be the changing factor in our world—not only changing the coastline and the shape of the world as we know it but the entire deeper makeup of it as well. She warned us to be prepared for this.

We actually felt lucky yesterday that we had already been hit badly last fall when a tornado came through in the middle of the night and took down our tall pines. Our house sustained damage then, our yard was ripped apart, but we’ve had so many windstorms since then and each time we breathe a sigh of relief that those tall trees that we so admired and appreciated no longer sway over our heads.

The other thing that kept popping up yesterday was Jeanne’s constant reminder that everything will be fine, that it will work out the way it’s supposed to, that in the end we will discover that we are exactly where we should be.

...to the middle...

Jeanne is fond of reminding us often that if we can learn to flow with what comes to challenge us we’ll have an easier ride and perhaps we’ll be able to notice the signs of the inevitable change, as well as the moments of awe and transformation a lot sooner too. This is true in everyday life as well as when doing recapitulation. I have found Jeanne’s words both comforting and reassuring no matter where I am in my life. Yesterday, as we repeated them often throughout the day, they once again guided us to flow through the storm, prepared but available to accept the inevitability of it.

Jeanne always suggested that we’d have an easier ride through life if we made the decision to acquiesce to the inevitable rather than fight it. Fighting takes a lot of energy and in the end we discover that it is fairly wasted as we end up having to let go anyway. We end up in the same place whether we resist or flow. The choice, however, remains in our hands.

Today, I am accepting of this changing world, both the outer world and my inner world, as I expect myself to acquiesce to the constant challenges of both of those worlds. I awaken healthy, thankful, respectful of nature and where we are today, as I ask Jeanne for a message as we begin this week.

What does it mean that we have gone through such a storm? What is the real significance, on a spiritual level and in general? Each one of us may have to face our personal truths regarding it, but, on a broader scale, how can we understand the meaning of it? What is the universe trying to tell us now?

Here is Jeanne’s response.

There is little to worry about as a new day dawns, except to pick up the pieces, salvaging that which is usable but in the interim learn what it means to let go. Even as you collect your old stuff around you, realize that in some way you were forced to let go of something. Learn to release attachments to old things and old ways and move on in life without regret. One can choose to travel lightly and with relative ease, moving always forward, or one can choose to travel heavily overburdened without a goal or deeper perspective. How one views and deals with natural and other disasters is always a choice.

As a new day dawns, I suggest that your same inner issues remain, though you may have gained some insight regarding the self after having encountered the fury of nature. In retrospect, investigate the self. Find the inner response, today’s response, and work with that. How can you change as a result of what you have both innerly and outerly just encountered or suffered through?

...to the other end.

Each moment of turmoil and suffering points the self in a new direction, offering an opportunity to change. How can you change now? How can you personally change? Many things are shown, presented and offered to you during the brewing, unleashing, and dying down of a natural disaster. Take it personally, as a personal message, as an offering in how to do inner work. Reflect on the self.

Yes, the natural world is rapidly changing and shifting. This you must all note. The natural world is showing you how to evolve. Can you choose personal evolution in keeping with that outer world? That’s the way to go.

Change is necessary now on all levels of society. I urge all of you to remain alert, aware of the necessity for drastic change in your world. Be daring enough to continue pushing the self to go beyond this moment. Each confrontation with the fears that reside inside means you are evolving.

I am with you all. You are not alone.

Choose to be open to change and you will fare well. Choose to fight it and you may suffer greatly, unduly so. You will end up in the same place anyway—evolved—though in the long run perhaps having learned a lesson very well that you did indeed need to learn in such a way. If constantly fighting the spirit’s call to change you may miss the evolutionary moments though—those grand moments of awe. With alertness and good preparation, in doing constant inner work, as you use the outer world as reflection, you all have the opportunity to evolve with awareness. Frightening as it may seem, you are all on a journey of change.

Again, I tell you: I am with you. And as Jan says: Yes, everything will be fine. Everything will be just fine, as it should be!

Thank you, Jeanne!

Chuck’s Place: I Feel The Earth Move…


I had a break early Tuesday afternoon. I turned off the lights, sat calmly in a lotus position and began the sweeping recapitulation breath. Within moments the earth beneath began to rumble. I felt the solid old factory building sinking, the sure-footed earth turning to liquid.

That’s how it is, with recapitulation. The surety of the structures we’ve built a self upon, a lifetime upon, begin to crumble, no longer able to support the solid illusions of our lives. It’s a free fall, and one not to be undertaken lightly, but only out of necessity.

We, as a world, are in the time of recapitulation now—and we must take the journey because the intent has already been set and there is no turning back.

The earthquake shook the capital of the modern world, Washington D.C. It left a four-foot crack in the Washington Monument and brought down several pinnacles of the National Cathedral—Church and State—the foundational structures of society, rocked and rattled by the energy of change.

Synchronistically, the Martin Luther King Jr. monument, recently installed at the National Mall, had just opened to the public and emerged unscathed from the quake. Can the old structures of our society handle the true impact of such an agent of change? Apparently not, and we see the realization of Martin’s dream, President Obama, confronted with the crumbling structures of our changing world.

I see Obama as an agent of change, ironically aided now by the forces intent upon his destruction. Those forces are quite willing to grind government and economy to a halt, to turn back the clock to some romantic vision of blissful conservativism. Destructive as that might be, it is having the effect of bringing down the long-dominating economic structures of the world. Had those forces not acted so rigidly, Obama would have been forced to bolster the status quo. He’s been relieved of that burden, the status quo is being irradicated and there is no turning back. And even should Obama be ousted in a desperate collective attempt to restore security, there’s no way to turn back the wheel of time to the good old days. Those structures are falling down, even the wealthiest cannot stop it. We are being forced into a time of waking up, facing the truths, and building fluid structures for a changing world. And nature is making sure that that world changes!

On a personal level, once the agent of change calls, the knock of the spirit to discover the full truths of the self, we do best to heed the call with the knowing that we have Spirit behind us. When spirit instigates changes, spirit also provides the supports to take the journey. Free fall is inevitable, and it can indeed be frightening.

Feeling the earth move under my feet was quite an awesome, humbling experience, but it’s also a reminder that the only real choice we have is the attitude we take toward that inevitable journey. When I felt the earth tremble and loosen its solid illusion, I said, “Wow, is this it! This is a ride I want to take with eyes wide open and calm breath.”

Onto the next agent of change, Hurricane Irene!

A Day in a Life: A Little Bit of Magic

Spirit knocks at the door. What do we do? Answer it! Where will it take us this time? Who knows, but can we allow ourselves to go? Can we hold onto our awareness and go, with fluidity? Can we accept that we really have no choice in the matter and find the beauty and the magic in every journey our spirit invites us to take? These are the questions that come up often in life. If we are aware of spirit and ready to take a different kind of journey, ready to accept a different viewpoint, we may just find that the door we open is indeed a magical door.

Facing the darkness

During my recapitulation I was constantly confronted with knocks from my spirit inviting me into the depths of my own soul. Did I really want to face what loomed up out of the darkness every time I heard those knocks? For a long time I didn’t. I ran away as fast as I could, the darkness and the shadowy scenes that popped up too frightening to contemplate. Eventually my spirit told me, in more ways than one, that it was dying, that it just didn’t want to do life the way I’d been doing it for almost fifty years. That was when I knew it was time to face the darkness.

As I tentatively took my first peek through that door into the depths of my soul, my first discovery was that the darkness, and everything else that had bothered me throughout my life, was actually inside me. I understood that, until I faced it, I would continue to bear the burden of it and all the stuff that was naturally piling on top of it. I saw that I was carrying a tremendous, depressingly heavy load. So, when the darkness called again, I didn’t run. This time I knew that if I didn’t face it I would die under the weight of it, and I wasn’t really ready to call it quits. I knew, as I’d always known, from the time I was a young girl, that I had to do something important with my life. I just could never get a handle on what that was.

I made the decision to face the darkness, circumstances leading me to the inevitable necessity of finding out what was wrong with me and what was wrong with my spirit. Once I set that intent, the universe took up my cause and one day I found myself sitting across from Chuck Ketchel. And that was the beginning of taking the next step into the darkness. He taught me how to face the darkness. He introduced me to the shaman’s world. He taught me magical passes, and a new perspective from which to view my life and all life, from a magical perspective.

The first little bit of magic that Chuck handed me was very simple. He said: “You’re on a spiritual journey.”

At first I wanted to spit it right back at him: “Yeah, I’m on a hell of a journey!” But something made me pause and in that pause I dropped into the depths of my soul and I knew he was right. That was enough to keep me on the path that I knew lay ahead of me, dark as it was and impossible to see.

Next he said: “You’re going back to find out what you missed the first time around. What are you supposed to find out about your child self?

In constantly revisiting my child self I learned how fierce she was, a warrior without even being aware of it. She not only survived years of sexual abuse, but she transcended it again and again. As I recapitulated, I was constantly reminded that I had once been a magical being. The challenge then became to find the means to accept this fact, for my adult self, but mostly for my child self, to allow her full integration into my life, magic in its rightful place, inside me; now replacing the darkness that had once loomed so frighteningly.

We are all magical beings!

With this shamanic, magical perspective as my anchor, I traveled back in time and met my child self and relived her journey over and over again, in great detail. As I took that journey I gained knowledge of the shamans world, of reality as illusion, of everything as meaningful, of everything as leading to awareness. A little bit of magic in the beginning was enough to cut through the darkness and give a little bit of light and hope, enough to traverse the darkness in its entirety. Eventually, I learned that I was nothing special, that everyone is equally magical. And that too was a magical lesson.

It was hard work. Facing the darkness inside the self is perhaps the most challenging and frightening encounter we can undertake. But, in truth, it is where the outer world and the people we encounter, where our relationships and everything else is reflected. It’s where all our challenges really lie.

The inner world may appear as darkness to the uninitiated, but I found out that every time I poked my head up out of the darkness I was totally amazed at where I had been and what I had experienced. I knew then that I had to keep diving into the deepest, darkest self in order to evolve, to change myself and the direction of my life. My spirit showed me exactly where to begin.

We are all magical beings. Sometimes our journeys present us with our magic early in life, and then we must go and retrieve it from the past. Reuniting with the lost self is a magical journey. As tough as it is, it leads only to more moments of magic, if we let ourselves open up to the possibility that magic is indeed meant to be part of life. And yes, I still have my inner darkness—that never goes away—but now, with a little bit of magic in hand, I’m not afraid to venture there. I continue to challenge myself to dive in there and face what my spirit shows me I must still face. I find the inner process to be the most important, fascinating, and magical part of life.

I wish that all might find the magic within. It’s just waiting, the golden nugget inside that darkest hunk of coal. The next time spirit knocks, answer the door. Look into the darkness and contemplate it with the magical self. That too is there waiting within.

Sending a little bit of magic and love,

#773 Know the Ancient Self

Written by Jan Ketchel with a channeled message from Jeanne Ketchel.

I sometimes wake in the middle of the night, the weight of the world on my shoulders. I toss and turn worrying about how this crumbling world is going to end up, how everyone is going to survive and thrive. The nighttime is often a difficult time to slough off such worries. I turn to dreaming, setting the intent to resolve my attachment to such issues as I drift off to sleep, asking the universe, Jeanne, and my higher self to guide me to resolution. Sometimes I just end up entangled in fear, my mind racing, knowing I’m personally being challenged but unable to gain clarity.

Last night, in the middle of tossing and turning, I heard the following admonishment: Stop projecting! Face your own fears and challenges. Let others take their own journeys, including humanity itself!

In the light of day, I understand how pragmatic and sensible this guidance is, but in the middle of the night it appeared as daunting and even somewhat cold-hearted. Often the frightened child in me simply chooses to turn away, wanting sleep instead, but in reality I am far from a scared child. However, I know I must constantly turn to my child self to guide me to face my fears, for they reside with her. There are always new challenges to face as life unfolds, and who, but my child self, the knower-of-all-things, would be able to show me where I need to go?

Today, I ask Jeanne to give us all guidance on how to face our nighttime, and daytime, fears. How do we turn our fears into deeper inner work? Do you have guidance for all of your readers about how to keep going ever deeper into inner work, how to face our fears and find our way to new levels of awareness?

Here is how Jeanne responded:

Deep inner work requires awareness that there is work to be done, first of all. You acknowledge your fears—GOOD! That is step-one in going deeper. One must be humble and open to the facts of human imperfection and struggle. All human beings are imperfect; it is the nature of being human. Your lives are meant to be lives of struggle, conflict, and challenge. I don’t mean this in a negative way, but, in truth, it is just so. That’s why you are alive—to work through core issues so that you may evolve beyond them.

If one constantly pushes fears and difficulties aside one will fail to grow. Imagine a child, an infant who never evolves beyond infancy, who never meets the challenges to grow physically or mentally, though it is perfectly formed and fully capable of doing so. Would it not be frustrating if that child did not take up the challenges in life, even the physical ones, though it is perfectly fine and more than capable of doing so?!

In turning from their true challenges in life, many people are like such an infant. In pushing aside fears, in not facing or accepting the horrors in life, one remains infantile, in a state of paralysis. In such a state one does not really relieve the self of any of the fears and horrors but simply becomes entrapped in them. They gain power and control and thus there is no release for the true spirit self, lying entwined in such powerful stuff.

Turn to the ancient self and face all your fears

At the core of each one of you is an ancient self—the all-knowing self—who requires more than paralysis and acquiescence to the infant who refuses to budge. This ancient self is the one calling to you at night, using your childhood fears, asking you to go inside and find your way ever deeper.

This ancient self has already faced every fear there is; yet it asks you to review what is most important for you to review in this lifetime. The fears you face in this lifetime are the challenges your evolving spirit self must face in order to grow. It asks you constantly to face them, often using your child self to alert you to what they are, asking you to resolve them, and gain awareness of the self as an evolving being, fully capable of meeting all your challenges, in that world, and in other worlds as well.

It’s easy to think that life in that world is all there is, to believe that one cannot change circumstances. But, in truth, each one of you has more power than you think to change your circumstances, both your outer circumstances and your inner ones as well. You just need to remind yourselves, fairly often, that your ancient self has all the answers. Having already faced everything you are now facing, this ancient self is present to guide you through your reliving. Your reliving will lead you to a new place this time because you are awakening to the fact that you have been here before, done this many times, in many other lives. You sense the déjà vu of life in all its aspects. You know, at your core, that your real challenge this time is not really to face your greatest fears, they are just the premise from which to launch. Your greatest challenge this time is to become more fully aware of this ancient self and what it has to tell you beyond your fears.

Accept your fears as necessary steps to learning about the ancient self. When you desire to turn away from your next moment of fear, I suggest that you stand your ground. Ask your ancient self to take your hand and guide you through that fear, so that you may find the root of it. It may not at all be what you think!

Thank you, Jeanne!