Mind, Body, and Toll

As I continue to come into my abilities as a psychic medium, one of the more unusual abilities I have is the ability to sense weird food interactions within a person, along with the ability to sense specific ailments in a person’s body. When I provide a reading for someone, I have the ability to sense the tennis elbow they have in their right elbow...the sciatica they have in their left hip...or the old injury they have in their ankle from a bike injury as a child. I’ve picked up on strange skin conditions like psoriasis and eczema, and when deceased people communicate with me, I can often pick up on the physical ailments that led to their demise, or at least contributed to it.

As with all my abilities, I can’t explain them. I just know that time and time again, they are accurate, and powerful. I’m so grateful that I have these gifts and that I can bring them to people so they can have some sense of clarity about their health. And I’ll say here what I say to people whenever I bring up health-related issues: in no way am I a medical professional, and I cannot advise people medically.

Oftentimes with reading, I find myself in the position of explaining that our mind, body, and spirit are inextricably connected. It’s not “mind, body, OR spirit” but rather “mind, body, AND spirit.” It seems somewhere along the line people have lost that distinction. We seem to be focused on mental health, or physical health, or spiritual health, and for whatever reason we’ve lost the connection between the three. When there’s an imbalance or deficiency in a person’s body, that often manifests in their mental or emotional health, or in their energetic or spiritual body. When there’s an imbalance in a person’s energetic or spiritual body, that often manifests itself as an imbalance in a person’s physical or mental health.

Again, I have to remind you that in all these matters, I’m self-trained and highly-reliant on my own intuition. These discoveries I present here come from my time as a psychic medium, and the hundreds of readings I’ve provided. When I step into that role, I do so as a conduit or channel that provides the spirits and energies around a person the chance to come through to provide them with messages of direction, connection, and clarity. Often times, a person’s spirits or higher self comes through frantically, insisting that people put the pieces together to help a person’s body heal.

As we attempt to heal all three of those bodies individually - mind, body, and spirit - we are healing all of them together. I’d like to share a bit of my current journey to find health on the physical level...and how that affects my emotional, spiritual, and mental health.

I’ve accepted the Universe’s plan for me and I wholeheartedly step into the role of psychic medium. Doing so makes me feel like my soul is singing, and I know that what I’m doing here is what I’m meant to do. I’m lucky and fortunate beyond measure...but that does not mean this role doesn’t come with its fair share of hazards. While I understand that I’m protected by my ancestors and the spirits and deities around me, this role can be a dangerous one. It can take a toll on a person’s mental well-being, their emotional well-being, and as such a toll on a person’s body.

I can speak from experience that it’s certainly taken a toll on mine. When I began this journey, I ran hard and fast into it, as hard and fast as I could, just like everything else in my life. I’m ambitious, and motivated, and I’m slowly learning that this hasn’t served me well in this role. It’s taken me awhile to realize to understand the toll of taking on other people’s mental, physical, and spiritual health during a reading. It’s taken me awhile to understand the toll of having dead people in my head on a regular basis.

In my position, physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual health is paramount. It’s vital to what I do. And while I stress this importance to my clients, I’ve learned it the hard way. During the last few months of 2018, the toll of doing so many readings, having so many deceased people in my head, really hit me hard. I’m generally a health conscious person, eating as well as I can manage...but something happened to me in the last part of 2018. Partly, I contribute it to my trip to New Orleans during Thanksgiving, and the fact that I was open to so many spirits and energies that fed off excess and hedonism. Partly, I blame the fact that I hadn’t really been looking at what I was doing as a psychic medium. Sure, I’m good at what I do and I know it’s what I’m meant to do…but I hadn’t been looking at what kind of toll it would take on my body, and ultimately my mind and spirit.

As most of you know, I’m a huge believer in symbols and signs from the Universe and the spirits and energies around us. During my daily morning devotionals, I pull a rune to see how my day will go, and I’ve recently taken to learning Tarot and pulling a card alongside my rune. Those aren’t the only signs I look for throughout my day, and they’re certainly not the only messages I’m receiving during my day. Now that I’m aware of my ability to receive messages from all sorts of spirits and energies around me, I pay attention more than I ever have.

At the turn of the year, I decided to ride the energies of everyone’s collective energy and their desire to turn a new leaf with a New Year’s Resolution. While I didn’t make a specific covenant with the Universe or a specific New Year’s Resolution, I could feel the power of the New Year and how it could help me better focus on my health. I made a conscious decision to treat my body better, and by extension my mental health and my spiritual and emotional health.

And that’s when I received my sign. I couldn’t tell you where I saw it, but I saw an article about the actor Chris Pratt and how he’s getting his “dad bod” back. You know what the “dad bod” is, right? A pudgy middle, plump and roundish, leaning towards obesity in an man approximately “dad” age, which I take to be about 40-ish or so. I appreciate Chris Pratt as an actor, find him funny in any role he tackles, and appreciated his journey as a young actor to hone his physical health as he took on my more action roles in Hollywood. But yet, this article was clearly body-shaming him.

And yet, even though I appreciated his journey to find his health and physical prowess, I also know the toll that Hollywood and popular culture can have on one’s self-image, for both men and women. Both men and women have to deal with portrayals of an “ideal” in our culture, and it’s my opinion that men suffer more in silence over it. Women, while they have more pressure from society to have the perfect body, the perfect hair, the perfect face, they also have more community in terms of support. They have more collective energy to support one another and push against these societal norms. They have more support in telling them to fight against those ideals, and I believe men lack that community. That’s not to say one gender’s plight is more or less than the other, it’s just that men lack the support that women throw around one another.

I didn’t realize it at the time, but that article about Chris Pratt and his dad bod was a sign from the Universe. A couple days after that, I saw another article about Chris Pratt, but this time his adventures with what’s called the Daniel Fast. I’d never heard of it, and I’m a fan of fasting. I’ve done three day water fasts before and reaped the benefits of that, physically, spiritually, and mentally. What I didn’t know is that Chris Pratt is a devout Christian, and while I felt his going on the Daniel Fast was a reaction to the body shaming that I’d seen just a few days prior, I decided to research it.

And while I am not a Christian, I do espouse Christian ideals, and do my best every day to live by the Golden Rule. Having this Daniel Fast placed in my lap was another sign from the Universe. I’d been looking for something to reset my digestive system, something to help cleanse and restart my body’s natural defense mechanisms. In the last part of December I’d come down with a head cold, and that’s the first time in a year and a half that I’d gotten sick - and I knew it was from my overconsumption of wheat, dairy, sugar, and other foods which my body clearly doesn’t contend with well. It was also a combination of the stress I’d been dealing with as I step into my role as a psychic medium.

Coming upon the Daniel Fast was a sign, and I wasn’t about to ignore it. Wikipedia lists the Daniel Fast as “a religious partial fast that is popular among Evangelical Protestants in the United States in which meat, wine, and other rich foods are avoided in favor of vegetables and water for typically three weeks in order to draw the believer closer to the God of Christianity. The fast is based on the lifelong kosher diet of the Jewish hero Daniel in the Biblical Book of Daniel and the three-week mourning fast in which Daniel abstained from all meat and wine. A similar observance can be seen with the 40-day season of Lent that is observed by Orthodox, Catholic, and Mainline Protestant Christians, though the Daniel Fast can be as short as 10 days. The passage in Chapter 1 refers to a 10-day test wherein Daniel and others with him were permitted to eat vegetables and water to avoid the Babylonian king's food and wine. After remaining healthy at the end of the 10-day period, they continued the vegetable diet for the three years of their education. The passage in Chapter 10 refers to a three-week fast of no meat, wine, or rich food.”

While I’m not a drinker of alcohol and coffee, I do like “rich” food...but only while I’m eating it. It’s very easy to see the similarities between food addiction (ultimately addiction to wheat, sugar, and dairy) and drug addiction. You don’t realize how bad something is for you because you’re not seeing immediate harmful effects, and just the short-term euphoria these substances bring. But just like drug addiction, mindlessly over-consuming unhealthy foods can bring disastrous results.

Just ask my belt and the extra notch I’m using now.

Today is my tenth day on the Daniel Fast. l am only consuming vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds. Absolutely no animal products whatsoever, and no coffee or alcohol. I am wholeheartedly excited to finish this fast, and not because of the foods I get to bring back into my diet, but because of the foods I will keep out of my diet. I am operating as a Vegan right now, consuming nothing that has to do with animals, and I know that I am going to keep going in this direction. I believe I may bring eggs back into my diet, so I’ll most likely be a vegetarian at best.

But I’m not going to box myself in. The lesson that I’m learning here is that I’m honoring my body, and by extension, my spiritual and mental bodies. If somewhere down the road my body is craving meat of some kind, I will honor that. There’s many schools of thought that go into consuming meat from animals that live in horror and squalor, so if I do bring animal products back into my body I’ll do so from a place of honoring them, and making sure they’ve lived a life that’s pain-free.

Again, I’m not meant to advise anyone medically. My journey is my own, and no one else’s, though someone might find inspiration in my journey as I did with Chris Pratt’s. I can tell you that at the end of this three week fast it will be the longest I’ve ever gone without animal products in my body, and at ten days in, I feel more alive, alert, and focused than I ever have. The readings I’ve provided in the past few days have been some of the clearest and strongest I’ve provided, and while I wonder why that is, I can see one common denominator: my change in my food intake. I can literally feel my body repairing itself. This is an incredibly strange journey for me to take because I’ve always been the typical carnivore, having meat or dairy in almost every meal of my life.

But now, I’m honoring my body. I’m honoring my mental and spiritual selves.

Now back to those symbols: on the morning of January 14th, when I began this fast, I pulled a rune and a Tarot card like I do every morning. The rune was Uruz, the rune of vitality, strength, and health...the Tarot card I pulled was the Fool, which indicates the start of a new journey. It represents new beginnings, having faith in the future, not knowing what to expect, improvisation, and believing in the future.

I know the spirits and energies around me have my back, clearly…

...now it’s time to have my own.

Josh Simonds