If you've lost loved ones, chances are that those people have spent time with you after they've crossed over. They may even be with you on a regular basis. After all, in addition to angels, archangels, and ascended masters, we also have deceased loved ones with us to help and assist. They include relatives who passed before your birth, deceased loved ones with whom you shared a close bond, or those from your past who teach you a special skill for your life's purpose. A departed being who stays with you continuously is called your "spirit guide." Usually, we have one or two spirit guides.
When a person passes away, they're eventually given the option of performing service work, both to expand their own spiritual progress and to help others. Some people volunteer to become spirit guides to their living loved ones. They usually elect to stay until the end of their living person's physical life. Time measurement is different in Heaven, so if you live to be 90, it feels like a much shorter time period to your spirit guides.
Spirit guides are with you because they love and care about you. In addition, you may have a similar life purpose to the deceased loved one who is by your side. Being with you is a way to vicariously fulfill your spirit guide's life purpose if they didn't fulfill it while living. If you were named after your dear departed Aunt Annette, chances are that she is your spirit guide. Namesakes nearly always stay with us. Perhaps we were named after that person because our parents intuitively realized our soul-path similarities.
So, when Aunt Annette decides to be your spirit guide, she first must go through the equivalent of a spiritual counselor training program. In that Heavenly school, Aunt Annette learns how to be with you in a supportive way, without interfering with your free will. She learns how to travel the astral plane and still be within earshot should you ever call for her help. Aunt Annette learns how to communicate with you through your strongest spiritual communication channel, such as your dreams, your inner voice, your gut feelings, or your intellectual insights. It takes time to train to become a spirit guide. That's why recently deceased loved ones aren't with us continuously. Only someone who has gone through extensive training can be with us night and day.
Let's say that Aunt Annette was a very successful newspaper reporter and you're an aspiring writer. In fact, writing is part of your life's purpose. So when you ask Heaven, "What's my mission in life?," Aunt Annette telepathically encourages you to write. Of course, your auntie is only doing this because she knows what God's Divine mission is for you. Sometimes people will ask me if it's okay to talk with the dead. They may quote from the Torah, which warns of speaking to the dead and mediums. I can understand these warnings, because it's a mistake to turn our lives over to deceased loved ones, just like it's a mistake to turn our lives over to living loved ones.
Our higher self, in conjunction with our Creator, is whom we want to turn our life over to. Our deceased loved ones can definitely help us, but they're not automatically saints, angels, or psychics just because their souls have crossed over. However, they can work in conjunction with God, the Holy Spirit, the ascended masters, and the angels to help us fulfill God's will (which is one with our higher self's will). I think the main reason to contact deceased loved ones is for that extra boost of help they can provide, as well as to maintain, heal, or deepen the relationship.
Spirit Guides For Those Who Are Adopted
I'm often asked about the spirit guides of adoptees. I've found that people who were adopted have more angels and spirit guides with them than non-adoptees. An adopted person always has a spirit guide who is a deceased relative from their birth family -- I've never seen an exception to this. It could be the deceased parent, or a sibling, grandparent, aunt, or uncle. It doesn't matter whether the adopted person ever met this birth relative or not. The family bond is there, regardless of whether a personal relationship was forged while living.
In addition, the adopted person has deceased loved ones from the friends and adopted family members whom they've been with along the way. I believe that adopted people have more angels than normal to protect them, and help them adjust to the life changes that result from the process of adoption.
Relationship with Spirit Guides
"Are my departed loved ones okay?" is a question I hear continually. The reason people ask is simple: the fear that a deceased loved one is in some sort of "hellish" place, literally or figuratively. Yet, my readings find that 90 percent of deceased people are doing just fine, thank you. Their only discomfort has to do with you and me, especially if we're grief-stricken to the point of obsession or emotional paralysis. Your deceased loved ones are going on with their lives, and they want you to do the same. If you hold back your spiritual progress or happiness due to grief, your deceased loved one is held back in similar ways.
In fact, it's safe to say that the only problem most people in Heaven have is . . . us! If we would go on to live happy, productive lives, our deceased loved ones would sing and party in Heaven in joyful celebration. In Heaven, souls feel wonderful physically. All illness, injury, and disability disappear once the body is gone. The soul is intact and in perfect health. The soul still feels like him- or herself, but without the heaviness and pain of having a body.
In Heaven, souls feel wonderful emotionally, too. Gone are all of the financial and time constraints, and there are no more pressures or concerns (unless we are inordinately desolate and pull our departed loved ones down emotionally). A soul in Heaven is free to manifest any situation or condition, such as world travel, a beautiful home, volunteer work, and time with family and friends (living and deceased).
"But what if my departed loved ones are mad at me?" I'm frequently asked. People worry that crossed-over friends and family members are angry with them because they:
• weren't there for the dying person toward the end of their life, or for their last dying breath;
• were involved in decisions to stop artificial life-support systems;
• are involved in lifestyle choices that they believe their deceased loved ones wouldn't approve of;
• fought with family members over inheritance issues;
• could have prevented the death, or that they were somehow to blame;
• haven't yet found, or brought to justice, the person who is seemingly responsible for a murder or accident; and/or
• had an argument with the person shortly before their death.
The fact is, though, that during all of my thousands of readings, I've never met a deceased person who was angry about any of the above matters. In Heaven, you release a lot of the concerns that weigh you down on Earth. In Heaven, you have better clarity about people's true motivations, so your deceased loved ones have a deeper understanding of why you acted (or still do act) in certain ways. Instead of judging you, they view you with compassion. They only interfere with your behaviors (such as addictions) if they see that your lifestyle is killing you or preventing you from fulfilling your life's purpose.
And don't worry that Grandpa is watching when you shower or make love. Crossed-over souls aren't voyeurs. In fact, there's some evidence that spirit guides don't see our physical selves on Earth; they see our energy and light bodies instead. So, a spirit guide simply sees your true thoughts and feelings during each circumstance.
Since spirit guides are truly aware of how you actually feel and think, there's no need to hide your worries from your departed loved ones. Let's say that you have conflicted feelings over your father's death. You're angry because Dad's incessant cigarette smoking and alcohol drinking contributed to his too-early demise. But you feel guilty, because you believe it's "wrong" to be angry at a dead person, especially your dad.
Your father knows just how you feel, because he's able to read your mind and heart from his vantage point in Heaven. Our deceased loved ones ask us to come clean with them -- to have a heart-to-heart discussion about our unfinished anger, fears, guilt, and worries. You can have this discussion by writing a letter to your departed one, by thinking the thoughts you want to convey, or by speaking aloud.
You can communicate with your deceased loved ones anytime and anywhere. Their souls aren't located at the cemetery. The soul is free and travels to whoever calls it. And don't worry that you're disturbing your loved one's peace. Everyone wants to heal unfinished business in relationships whether they're living or deceased, so your departed one is just as happy and motivated about this discussion as you are.
Animal Angels As Spirit Guides
Would it surprise you to discover that among the deceased loved ones who watch over you are some of your beloved pets? Your dogs, cats, horses, and any other animals you deeply loved stay with you after their physical passing. The love bond that you shared with your pets when they were living acts like a leash that keeps them eternally by your side, long after death.
When I give workshops, I tell audience members about the dogs and cats I see running and playing throughout the room. Usually we can figure out pretty quickly which dog belongs to which person, because the dogs stay by their owner's side. These reunions, in which audience members discover that Rover is still around, are quite touching and emotional. They discover that their dogs have the same personalities, appearance, and behaviors that they did while living. If the dog was playful, hyperactive, friendly, well groomed, or amazingly calm while alive, she maintains these characteristics after physical death. Playful dogs jump in piles of etheric leaves and chase after balls. Whether these leaves, balls, and other playthings are conjured by the dogs' imagination, I don't know.
Cats stay with their owners, too, although they usually don't stick as closely to a human's side as a dog does due to their independence. So, at my workshops, it's difficult for me to tell which cats belong to which owners. I have to rely on describing the various cats running around the room, and having their owners "claim" them.
Many of my audience members report that they've seen or felt apparitions of their deceased pets. For instance, you might feel Fluffy the cat jump on your bed, or sense Red the dog lying on the couch beside you. You might even see them dart across the room, out of the corner of your eye. This is because the corner of our eye is more sensitive to light and movement than the front of our eye, so we often see psychic visions out of this area. When we turn to view the image from the front, though, it seems to disappear.
I've seen a few horses and even one guinea pig hanging around people like guardian angels. These were beloved pets to their owners, and the animals continue to stand loyally next to their "people." The animals help by infusing us with their Divine energy of love, and also providing companionship that maybe only our unconscious is aware of.
I've also seen spirit totem animals with people who have past-life connections to Native American cultures. These are eagles, wolves, and bears who circle their human's head, giving them protection and natural wisdom. I've seen dolphins with people who are involved in ecological concerns, as well as unicorns around people who are highly attuned to nature and the elemental kingdom.
Reprinted with permission of the publisher,
Hay House Inc. ©2002. http://www.hayhouse.com
This article was excerpted from the book:
Messages from Your Angels
by Doreen Virtue, Ph.D.
Messages from Your Angels is a sequel to the bestselling Angel Therapy. This is a channeled book that contains uplifting and fresh information from the angelic realm. The angels, including Archangel Michael, provide healing messages that help readers to heal from emotional pain, find their life's purpose, understand their love life, and make decisions about important life areas.
About the Author
Doreen Virtue is a spiritual psychologist who holds Ph.D., M.A., and B.A. degrees in Counseling Psychology and is the author of more than twenty-two books about mind-body-spirit issues including Angel Therapy and Divine Guidance. She has appeared on Oprah, CNN, The View, and other talk shows, where she is frequently referred to as "The Angel Lady". Visit her website at http://www.angeltherapy.com/