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Learning Their Language
Intuitive Communication with Animals and Nature
By Marta Williams
New World LibraryCopyright © 2003 Marta Williams
All rights reserved.
How I Learned to Communicate Intuitively
I did not grow up consciously able to talk intuitively with animals. I learned how to do this by studying and practicing, just as you can. I don't believe that I have any more innate talent for it than you do. For more than a decade, I've taught classes in intuitive communication, and I have yet to meet someone who was incapable of learning. The only difference between me and a beginning student, is the amount of time I've spent practicing and researching.
I have, however, been concerned about animals and nature for as long as I can remember, which led to my pursuit of an undergraduate degree in resource conservation at the University of California, Berkeley. While in college, I developed a severe back problem. It was so bad that I had to take a break from school. Rather than getting back surgery, I sought out noninvasive alternative therapies, which put me in touch with a different crowd than I was meeting in my university classes. Had I not been exposed to alternative forms of healing — bodyworkers, psychic healers, and the like — I might not have been so accepting of the idea of intuitive communication when I encountered it later on.
At one of the healing workshops I attended, something happened that changed my life: I learned about the work of J. Allen Boone. One of the people at the workshop suggested that I read Boone's book, Kinship with All Life. When I went looking for the book, I found that it was out of print. I finally located a dusty original hardbound copy in the stacks of a public library. The inside back cover indicated that it had last been checked out in 1954. Boone's books have since been reprinted and are available in most bookstores, but back then few people seemed to know of him.
Reading this book changed my whole perspective on what was real and possible. In his book, Boone told how he came to know a famous Hollywood German shepherd dog named Strongheart. Boone had been asked to take care of the dog for several months. During that time, he realized that Strongheart was far more intelligent than he was, and furthermore that Strongheart understood everything Boone said, felt, or thought. With this insight, Boone set out to hear responses back from Strongheart so that they could converse — and he succeeded. The book is elegant and convincing, but no one would ever be able to figure out Boone's technique from his book. Even so, he persuaded me that intuitive communication was real. Up until that point I knew it only as an intriguing daydream and the subject of some of my favorite science fiction novels.
One thing I found compelling about Boone was that he voiced an ethic and a philosophy that I was not seeing reflected anywhere in society. Boone talked about the equality of all living beings and advised that all life, regardless of its form, would respond favorably to our genuine interest and respect. To Boone, there were no communication boundaries between one life form and another; the silent language he discovered with Strongheart had the power to unite us all.
After I finished my studies at Berkeley, I worked as a director of wildlife rehabilitation clinics for about five years. Even though this was important work, and it was fantastic to interact with wild animals every day, I worried about the problems facing the animals and the earth, and wanted to help in a more significant way. Hoping that I could have a greater impact as a professional scientist, I earned an M.S. degree in biology at San Francisco State University. I conducted my thesis research at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Kesterson Reservoir in central California, studying the harmful effects of chemical residues from agricultural runoff on birds' reproductive systems. Many birds in the Kesterson refuge were born disfigured, and none of the juveniles survived to adulthood.
After graduate school, I went to work in the field of environmental regulation and restoration, conducting audits, hazardous-waste site clean-ups, and habitat restoration projects. This work was worthwhile too, but I still felt like I wasn't doing enough, or wasn't doing the right thing. My work as an environmental scientist seemed to be too little, too late. In my free time, I was an environmental activist (and still am), but even that felt inadequate.
In the late 1980s, I decided to go on a vision quest. I had been reading and hearing a lot about impending changes to the earth's climate and ecology, caused by human activity. The Hopi prophecies for our time suggested that if people could experience a shift in consciousness and reconnect with animals, nature, and spirit, much of the predicted destruction could be avoided. I started thinking about how such a connection could be encouraged in the modern world. I decided to go on the vision quest to ask to be shown the best way for me to help this change come about.
During the trip to the vision quest site in the White Mountains in California, the trip leaders told me about a woman in my region who offered classes in animal communication. I became very intrigued by the idea that I could actually study and learn how to do this. Throughout my time in the desert, I could not stop thinking about it. I had the feeling I was being led to do this.
As soon as I returned from the vision quest, I signed up for classes and started reading everything I could find on the subject of animal communication. I soon realized that this pursuit was not going to be that easy. In fact, I had a hard time learning to do animal communication, mainly because I believed that I was making things up, and therefore I felt like a failure.
It didn't help that whenever I told people outside of the animal communication classes what I was doing, their reactions were negative and guarded. At that time, in the late 1980s, most people regarded intuitive communication with animals as unintelligent nonsense. As a scientist, I was accustomed to being taken seriously, not ridiculed. In addition to regaining the actual skill of intuitive communication, I had to learn how to deal with the taboos associated with this field and to remain confident in the face of doubt and disbelief from those around me. I now see that process as having been immensely valuable; I had to learn to trust my own truth in order to claim this skill. Those negative experiences were also good, in a way, because they motivated me to find easier, more effective ways to help others learn.
One day, a turning point in my studies occurred. I was living with a friend who was somewhat skeptical about animal communication. At the time I had several cats, including my brindle cat, Jenny. When I came home that day, my friend said, "OK, if you can do this stuff then tell me what Jenny did today." He had been home all day and had observed Jenny's activities.
I went to Jenny, closed my eyes, and mentally asked, "Jenny, what did you do today?" Immediately, I received a picture of Jenny up on the ledge of my backyard fence, touching noses with a squirrel who was also standing on the fence ledge. I had never seen anything like that before; I thought that it was very odd and probably wrong, but that I would say it anyway. I told my friend the picture Jenny had sent me. His jaw dropped and his eyes widened as he said, "Oh my God!" Then he confirmed that what I "saw" had actually happened. I had my first undeniable verification that intuitive communication was accurate and real and that I could do it.
My friend continued, "Ask her what they were talking about!" So I did. This time she sent me pictures and words. She said that she'd told the squirrel to watch out for my other cats, who were mean and who would hurt the squirrel. She said that she and the squirrel were talking about the squirrel's babies, and then she sent me two pictures — one of walnuts and one of laundry hanging on a line. From those pictures, I presume that Jenny and the squirrel also talked about nuts and laundry.
At this point in my life, I began practicing in earnest. I organized a practice group of students from the class I was taking. I talked intuitively to every animal that crossed my path. I would ask wild animals about their habits, then look up the responses in my field books to see if the answers I received were right. I would interview dogs in the park, then strike up a casual conversation with their people to discover whether the information was correct. Each time I had any doubts, I soon had another confirming experience.
One day, I went to the home of one of my activist friends to talk with her dog. This woman was skeptical, too, but she wanted to see what I could do. After some inconclusive questions and results, she suggested that I ask her dog about her favorite activities. When I asked this question, the dog flashed me a mental picture of herself sitting in a chair wearing a party hat, seated at a table with lots of other dogs sitting in chairs wearing hats, and there was a big carrot cake in the middle of the table.
You can imagine what went on internally as I debated whether to tell this woman the picture I'd received. I knew that I didn't make it up; I had never even heard of dog birthday parties at that time. I decided that if I wanted to do intuitive communication, I was going to have to say what I got no matter what the consequences and no matter how foolish I might appear (one of many challenges in doing this work!). So I told her, and she said, "Oh yes, we give her a birthday party every year and invite all her dog friends and give them a carrot cake. Yes, they have hats and sit at the table. But I'm still not convinced that this stuff works." Well, no matter; I was convinced!
I began working part-time as an animal communicator, teaching classes and helping people with their animals in private consultations. Eventually, I switched to doing it full-time.
I have seen that once people experience intuitive communication with animals, their perception of the world changes. Each animal on earth becomes an individual with the same qualities of sentience, emotion, and spirit that humans have. Once you have really communicated with animals, it is impossible to go back to thinking of them as inferior or limited.
In the 1980s, when I started studying animal communication, few people knew about it and practitioners were scoffed at. Today there are thousands of people learning animal communication and millions who have heard of it throughout the world. It is on the news, both in the newspapers and on TV. I am greatly encouraged by the fact that animal sentience is being so widely accepted, even though traditional science continues to question its validity. What is needed now is for many more people to take enlightened action on behalf of the animals and the earth.CHAPTER 2
Intuition: The Hidden Ability
Everyone has intuitive ability, but most of us are unaware of it. We use our intuition daily, but at an unconscious level. Anyone can learn how to bring intuitive ability under conscious control. Some people do this easily with minimal instruction.
One of my clients, Linda Stine, is a case in point. She saw the information on my Web site, read a few of the books I recommended, and then was easily able to communicate intuitively with her quarter horse gelding, Zip. She shared the following story:
My newly acquired horse, Zip, injured himself in the pasture. He had a cut from the bulb of his heel to the fetlock joint. The wound healed well after two weeks, but he remained lame. After five weeks I had the vet come out again, but all he could suggest was to do nerve blocking to isolate the problem area. I decided against that and had a talk with Zip instead. I told him I just wanted to know where it hurt and why, since he appeared to be completely healed. I told him I only wanted to help him. Later, I was walking past his pasture when all of a sudden it came to me so clearly: I saw a picture of him doing barrel racing. At the same time I was seeing this image, I felt pain, fear, frustration, and anger very strongly. I got an overall message that Zip did not want our relationship to be like that.
I was overcome with emotion and said out loud, "No! No! No! I don't care if you ever run a barrel again. I will never treat you badly." Then I got a feeling that he was worried and that he didn't want to let me down or upset me to the point of my getting angry with him. I told him that all I wanted from him, what would make me happy, would be to see him playing free in his pasture. As soon as I said that to him, he went to the bottom of the hill in his pasture, rolled, and got up. Then he squealed, bucked, and galloped at full speed to the top of the hill. Zip has not taken one lame step since! We are now working on what Zip does want to do.
Suppressing the Ability
I have heard similar stories from many people. This is part of what convinces me that we all have an inborn intuitive ability. But this ability is suppressed early on by teachers, parents, and the general culture. The reasons for this are complex and, I believe, go far back in time. At this point, suppression of intuition has become a habit of our modern culture. People like Linda, on the other hand, may have grown up with someone who encouraged the use of intuition.
Intuition is a function of the right side of the brain, the side associated with creativity and emotion. It is the antithesis of logic and it comes to us from inside, from our sixth sense. Unless there is some kind of physical damage to the body, everyone has an inborn intuitive sense. As children, we used it freely. We didn't worry whether something was illogical or silly; we acted spontaneously. We were good at receiving intuitive information and communicating with animals. But as we grew up, we were trained to disconnect from our core selves and be critical of intuitive, nonlogical information — to consciously screen it out. As adults, we still receive intuitive data and often act upon it, but this all occurs on a subconscious or unconscious basis.
Because we have learned so well to suppress our intuition, it usually only emerges in a crisis. One of my clients told me a story that illustrates this. One day when she was driving to work, she kept seeing an image in her mind's eye of the underside of her dining room table. She thought this was odd and tried to ignore it, but the image had a quality of urgency about it. She thought perhaps there was something wrong at her house — a fire or something — so she turned around and went home to check. When she got there, she found her cat lying on his back having a seizure; his gaze was locked on the underside of the dining room table.
This was a classic example of intuition; there was no rational process involved, no deductive or inductive reasoning, no educated guesses — nothing. She could not have received that picture in her mind by any logical means, yet the picture was accurate. The only explanation is that the information came to her intuitively. By now I have heard so many stories like this from my clients and students — about how someone in their family knew intuitively from a distance the precise moment when another family member or pet became ill, was injured, or was dying — that I imagine it is quite common.
Intuition in Daily Life
Unconsciously, we use intuition every day. We use it to scope out new people or situations, to figure out what to do when there is no logical course of action, and to feel out the safety of a situation that may have some unpredictable consequences. As children, we perfected the art of scoping out how someone else feels by tuning in to our parents; it was important for us to know how those adults who were our source of survival were feeling. A classic example of intuition is a mother's connection to her baby, knowing exactly what the baby needs even when separated. You are probably using your intuition more than you think.
You may be one of those people who knows who is on the phone before you pick it up; that's intuition. Or you may think of someone and then call, only to find out that he was thinking of you, too; that's intuition. Intuition is any hunch or gut feeling you get. You are using your intuition any time there is ambiguity and you rely on your gut feeling or instincts to decide which way to go, which person to see, which thing to select, or which approach is best.
Excerpted from Learning Their Language by Marta Williams. Copyright © 2003 Marta Williams. Excerpted by permission of New World Library.
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