There is a common point of view that when you work with energy you need to protect yourself from picking up the out of balance vibrations from the client. These are either emotional or mental energies that you are clearing away from the clients field or a particular vibration of illness such as a sore hip or headache that the client has and that you move for the client, only to pick up yourself. There is no doubt that this happens - the only question is why it happens and how to prevent it.
The usual prevention strategy is to build an energy wall/sphere around yourself - such as a wall of gold or white light. (Please note that the the construction of spheres has the same problems as a wall.) The idea is that the bad vibrations can't penetrate the wall. In fact the wall idea is something that actually contributes to the problem. To be able to hold a wall of energy strong enough to be effective you would need to put a significant amount of intention and awareness into it. Lets say you were 95% successful - that means that you are able to hold your intention and awareness of it for 95 % of the time you are working on the client. For the other 5% of the time you are exposed to the Œbad vibrations' and so you get 5% sick. In fact, unless you are an enlightened master, your chances of even being this aware are zero. Please don't kid yourself about your degree of enlightened perception. We are all where we are on the path - imagining you are "in front" of yourself is like walking quickly with your eyes shut. You don't know what direction you are going in and soon you'll fall over or walk into something! This is not how to work with energy.
So if you can't build a wall what do you do?
For a start consider where you focus your attention. Many energy practitioners are very aware of energies but just let things happen to them. So that you pick up a mental energy in your head, a sore joint problem in your joints and an emotional issue you feel through your emotions. This works by resonance like a tuning fork. If you hit one tuning fork, others will start to sound because they are tuned to pick up the same vibration. Bodies - physical, mental and emotional are also much the same, tuned to matching frequencies. So remember, when you are working with a client, you will resonate to the vibrations of that client.
Try an experiment - close your eyes and lock on to your energetic awareness of the first person or animal that comes into your head. Examine how your vibration feels - then think of another being and examine how it feels and what the difference is in the vibration. If that's not strong enough, pick out a person who really irritates you and then another that you love dearly. You resonate to your mental perception of that being (or that situation). Similarly, with a real person in front of you, if you are open, you will resonate to the person's energies.
The way to working with energy is to be aware of energy where the energy is - not where you are.
The first step in working with another, is to put your attention into your hands and be aware of the subtle energy changes happening through your hands not in your body. Use your awareness to watch it very closely - it is a marvellous energy system that you are working with.
You'll find that the energetic awareness that you immediately "plug into" is the chi energy system. You should stay with this at least until you can hold onto the feelings in your hands for a full session. Then you can change the resonance levels you are working with through the direction of your consciousness to access other energy fields, again keeping your attention in your hands but allowing your consciousness to "read" the messages from that field. It is important to be able to not only note the differences in the different fields, but to be able to keep yourself attuned to that particular resonance - and this only comes with practice. I would consider that an experienced practitioner would spend at least 30 - 50 sessions just getting aquainted with the feeling of the basic chi energies off and on the body.
The next step is to project out your attention - it's a bit like when you reach out with your hearing to hear a small sound. In Java, blind people walk through cane mazes like bats because they have developed this awareness on a physical level. You can develop this on an energetic level - but through awareness - not imagination. When you can be totally open you can allow the energies to resonate in your body and you won't hold onto them. If you're healing when you're tired or run down and you do become blocked in your chi then you can do the Qi Gong shaking exercise (sort of like Elvis shaking all over - if you don't know it) or take a quick cold shower. I really don't recommend any healing sessions if you're run down. Being run down indicates that you are not in balance with your own energy. Regularly practicing Chi Gong or meditating on the breath (Vipassana), will help connect your energetic breath to your physical breath and then you won't loose energy.
If you're completely open while working with another, just allowing the energies to pass through, you will be successful in that you'll direct the energetic attention and you'll allow the freedom for the bodies intelligence to heal itself.
Remember that protection always comes from a fear energy - by projecting a wall against your client you will alter the session and trap energies associated with your fears in your field. There is an old Zen saying: "In the perfect warrior there is nowhere for the enemy to pitch his sword." Be hollow like the proverbial flute and you'll never pick up anything except the sounds of your inner harmony.
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