Your path to Ascension; a conversation with Jeremy Elliott
Jeremy Elliott is a Reiki Practitioner and spiritual healer who works in the Chattanooga area; his practice is called Positive Resonance. He’s also a self-described “spiritual nerd” who writes about a wide range of psycho-spiritual topics that explore how to live the life you have always dreamed of.
I invited Jeremy on the show to share some of his knowledge about the topic of Ascension.
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Okay, so ascension, there's essentially two things. There's the process and the event. Ascension is basically the process of reconnecting with God. A reason that it's called "ascension" is because here in the physical world, we're at low vibration, low frequency. So during the process of self-purification, which is another term for healing, we are raising our vibrations and eventually we will make it up to the point where we do reconnect with God or with everything. With Oneness.
How did you become interested in this topic in particular?
Actually, this topic kind of found me as a part of my path. For a lot of my life, it was not on really a spiritual path. I was working on websites in a corporate office. And then at some point I realized that I could definitely produce more meaning for the world. I had a more beneficial purpose for the world in general. And in that time, going through this process of self-discovery, the ascension topic really hit me in a big way.
There's a lot of background, but I'd really like to get into more about the ascension in particular.
Yeah, go ahead! And talk about what that process is for you. When you discovered it, it sounds like there was a process there that you latched onto and were interested in going through as part of a personal journey. Tell me about what that was.
So just to give a little of the background, in my 20s, it was a point in my life where I didn't care about spirituality. I wasn't interested. It didn't matter, didn't make a difference to me. Then a close relative in the family died at a relatively young age, in their early 20s, and somehow that just set off, I don't know, it was a trigger. Something clicked and all of a sudden, I just started getting into everything.
I didn't even know about meditation. I found this word in a book. I looked it up. I was looking up 'spiritism' which is a fascinating aspect of emerging Christianity and psychic abilities, life between lives, all this kind of thing. And for meditation, I got into Buddhism and that's where things started becoming a little bit problematic in life was how to deal with spirituality in life.
At first there were questions like, how do I... because life was becoming in many ways, it was starting to become meaningless and kind of painful on one hand. I was starting to notice that things weren't clicking. I wasn't happy. I'd read about enlightenment and... Oh. That's what I want. That's going to solve everything.
That was really the start of the whole process.
Now, years later, I can say that's not the way you go about it. Actually, it's a lot different process because the journey... and it really helped me understand that what I was doing as I was looking at my life thinking, okay, I've got problems, and I want a solution to them. I want to get out of this pain. I want to be happy.
And so I said, if I choose enlightenment, this is what's going to work for me. And so I go sit down on my meditation cushion for weeks and months and years. Nothing happened. At the end of it, it's almost like, you know what? This isn't working and I've done this for so long. What's going on?
There was some resentment because when you realize this, it's almost like I made some kind of bargain with God. It was like, if I be a good spiritual person for so long, then everything's going to work out. I'm going to get my goody bag at the end. And that's not the way it works at all.
So at this point, there's almost this idea of, maybe I don't really want it after all. Screw that.
What that was, was actually just a classic case of what's called spiritual bypass. What happens is, what people will think, okay, I've got these problems. But now that I'm working on enlightenment, all the life issues, that's for little people. That's not for me because I'm too spiritual for those kind of concerns. It's a common trap to fall into.
What actually happens is, the pain in our life, what we get in life is exactly what we need for ascension and for self-purification. That pain that we're trying to avoid by seeking ascension or seeking enlightenment, those are the signs that are signaling exactly what we can find inside of ourselves that we need to work on.
So it's really kind of the opposite. We always tend to do things the opposite way than what we really need to do. So for instance, any time that you in life find something that you're not happy with, that is a signal that there is something inside of you that needs to be healed. So in healing that, whatever that is inside of you, that's the process of self-improvement. That's the spiritual path. That's what leads you to ascension.
Mmm... let me stop you there and say that, when you said that, the first thing that I thought is, most people respond to that with thinking they need to change their circumstances or the situation that's causing them problems, right?
Right. That's very common that people aren't happy. They think, I just need this. I just need that. Just to make it a short response. Anything that's temporary is not going to get happiness. Nothing external, in other words, can give you happiness. It has to be something internal. That internal is finding your true self and your true worth.
This process of self-purification is actually uncovering... what has happened in life is we've all been wounded. We have these emotional reactions. People hurt us and that pain, instead of allowing ourselves to feel it, we repress it. We stuff it down inside.
When that happens, those emotions actually prevent us from feeling our true self and our true worth. So the process of self-purification, the ascension process, is a journey of actually healing, is bringing those up, allowing ourselves to feel the pain in order to release it.
One of the things that I like to point out to people is that... negative emotions are very tricky to deal with. Nobody likes to feel them or to work with them. But it's important to understand in the idealistic world that we're living in, the extent that we allow ourselves to feel negative emotions, that is the same capacity to which we will be able to feel positive emotions. If we don't allow ourselves to feel negative emotions, we cannot feel happiness. We cannot feel joy.
So it's not avoiding the negative emotions or avoiding the negative situations, or trying to find things, bringing things into our lives that'll make us happy. It's actually working through the things that are difficult for us and are causing us pain. By working through those, we will get to happiness or the joy that we're seeking.
So how do you work through that? When you and I were initially discussing this topic, writing back and forth, you talked about there being sort of stages, right? There are official stages to ascension, with some of the early stages being about this purification process.
Explain what... because people hear that and they think, okay, I'm supposed to be going through a purification process. What does that mean?
Okay so there's two aspects to it. Personal process and then there's the general process.
In general, what we have if we're on this planet here, we have the first 7 initiations. And just to put this into perspective, in order to reach perfection, or oneness with God, there's 354 overall.
So some people kind of think that once you reach enlightenment, or you ascend off this planet, that, okay, you're home free. It's not that way. You can think of the Ascended Masters, the ones who have ascended from this planet, as being just older brothers that are also not very far along the path but are there. And interestingly enough, those Ascended Masters, they want to help us because we're going to eventually take their place as they move up in what's basically called a spiritual hierarchy.
So the stages, what we're dealing with here on Earth, we have, kind of before the initiation process, when you start the ascension process, you're now called an Initiate. Before that happens, you're basically on your own. You're doing whatever. You're experimenting. You're experiencing life.
Once you start thinking about good versus bad or having some conceptual ideas of right and wrong, and also start to begin to manifest qualities of love and compassion, you're starting to get on the path of ascension.
Now the first three stages of ascension deal with being able to have some sort of control over your physical body, your emotional body, and your mental body. There's a very good reason for this. So once you start to ascend higher and higher, because your thoughts and your emotions they're actually, can't say physical things but they're objects on the spiritual level. So even though we can't see them, if you look at the higher level, when you get to the astral level and higher, the spiritual beings that are helping us, spiritual helpers, they can see those as actual objects and those have consequences.
So if you were to take somebody from the Earth plane and put them on a higher level, those thoughts would instantly manifest. So if you don't have control of your thoughts that well, well guess what? You've just actually done that.
So this thing about ascension. It's not something like God's here being like... we're not playing favourites. This is just a necessary part of the process in order to be able to get to another level without doing harm on a higher level.
Moving up in the initiation process, the 4th initiation is something that probably a lot of people on a spiritual path, at least that I've seen, are experiencing now is sometimes known as the "Job initiation", where everything in the world just kind of becomes meaningless. Everything that used to give you pleasure doesn't give you pleasure anymore. Or maybe just kind of your world collapses and everything falls apart. One of those two aspects.
At first, it's extremely painful and mentally, because you feel like there's nothing for you, life doesn't make sense. It's all over. What that is is kind of like, for people who understand or know about tarot, it's kind of like the tarot card where it's a destructive process but it's actually a freeing one because it's allowing you to understand what's really important. That the physical, material things of life are not important. It's the spiritual aspects that's important. So it allows you to build a firm, spiritual foundation.
As you build higher, the 5th initiation, you're actually starting to merge with your spirit, which is the divine aspect of yourself. And then when you get to initiation 6, you're actually at the beginning of the ascended master stage and at the end of initiation 7, you have completed your, you are basically, you are no longer in a cycle of reincarnation. You have released yourself.
When you're at that level, if you think about what that level means, that means always having kindness in your heart, always having pure thoughts. When I say that, of course, I'm already laughing about the fact that people are gonna be like, okay, all I have to do is control my thoughts, control my feelings.
No. That is not what you do. Because you can't. You can't control your thoughts and you can't control your emotions. The process of self-purification is one where you're finding, what is inside at a higher level that is affecting your thoughts and emotions? Whatever's influencing your thoughts and emotions, that's what needs to be healed. And that you can work on and help purify.
I was gonna say, what about observing, because observing is not necessarily trying to control. You can acknowledge that you're having a certain thought or emotion without becoming overly attached to it or acting on it. So that's kind of a mid-range stage or goal in that process, right?
Correct. Yes. You do want to have an awareness, or it's not that you... It would be very helpful if you had an awareness of your thoughts and your emotions at all times. Because people get lost in them. So part of the process is to, when you have an awareness, first of all, don't judge anything. The minute you judge it, you've basically repressed it. You've said, oh, I don't want this.
And then when you start doing that, then it goes away and once those thoughts go away... When you're not aware of something, you can't fix it.
Where would you fit re-framing into that process? This is something that I do a lot so of course I'm gonna quiz you from my limited perspective.
But one of the things that I try to do is not only to acknowledge and observe those thoughts, but to replace them. Like you said, there's an equally positive level of thought and emotion for those negative thoughts and emotions. So how does that play a part in your perspective on this? Am I on the right track with that?
Can you give a specific example? Because I'd like to use it. Or maybe I'll give an example: Let's say somebody's a jerk, right? You have this thought, somebody's a jerk. So you would reframe it and say, well, I really like this person.
Is that kind of what you're doing?
Well probably what I would do in that instance, like if I were to experience somebody who was acting a certain kind of way to me or whatever, causing me to have a negative thought or emotion about them, depending on what my relationship to that person was, if it was a random stranger, I might look for some kind of thought about the fact that it doesn't really have anything to do with me.
That might be sort of a low level way of re-framing that.
If it's someone that I am, say, close to, who's triggering me in some way, pissing me off, one of the first things that I'll do is remind myself what their intentions are. Most people, especially those you're in relationships with, their intention is not to annoy you. And I'm easily annoyed.
So the way that I would take this, instead of worrying about what their intentions are, I would be like, Oh, this is great. Somebody is annoying me. Because every time that happens, this is a gift that, it's like telling you, there's something inside that is bothering you that can be healed.
So these are basically triggers. And when you find repeating patterns, it's very helpful because then you're like, okay, this has happened over and over. This person's triggered me over and over. It's like the Universe is saying, "Look, you need to look into this. There's something in there." At which point you can meditate on. You can go inside and... what's going on?
Actually you don't need to feel... So you can feel pissed off in the moment, but in the same moment, having an awareness of being pissed off and being like, oh, this is great. I'm being pissed off. So what's happening here? In other words, be curious about being pissed off. Because most people are like, they take it and they immediately go into defense mode, like, oh he pissed me off, and want to clamp down.
The moment that you have that emotional reaction, for instance, when you stop breathing, when you clench your mouth, you tighten your muscles, that represses that emotion. It keeps it from being able to express itself. It doesn't mean you want to act on the emotion, but you definitely don't want to hold it inside.
By looking at it with curiosity (what's happening here?), you're also allowing it to have it's space. You're holding space for that emotion so it can fully express itself. At the same time, of course you don't want to keep doing that over and over again because that just doesn't make sense. But it just gives you that, it's showing you what you need.
You can look and say, okay, when has this happened before? Look into childhood. Where in childhood did somebody piss me off? There might be something there that's... Oh! That's what happened. It was a memory that you'd long forgotten about and that needs to be healed. Because at the moment as a child, for instance, you saw it in a way, from a child's perspective, you took it in a lot differently and it caused a lot more pain than it needed to cause.
I think that's a really useful simple tool - to be curious about everything. To investigate it and to treat your emotional responses as kind of diagnostic tools.
Right. That's exactly right.
That's actually kind of the purpose of all our relationships. We think that relationships are there to make us happy. That's not it. If you cannot be happy by yourself alone, then what you're doing is, you're expecting somebody else to make you happy. That's not the job of the other person.
Oh gosh. That's a whole other show right there.
Haha... Off of that tangent.
But the point of every relationship that we have with a person is because that person reflects us. So if somebody is doing something... because there's people that do stuff that are "wrong", but we're not annoyed by them. Because we don't have that aspect inside of us. It's those things that they do that piss us off, that's because we have that same aspect in us that we're ashamed about. If we did not have that, we wouldn't care.
So the problem with spirituality is where you have to be brutally honest. You have to throw out self-judgement. You have to throw out shame. You cannot feel guilty about this. You have to take everything on the level of, no matter what I've done in life, God is there and he always loves me. He doesn't care what I've done. He's seen it all.
Once you've realized that, then you can look at yourself and be like, the only thing I have to heal is, I have to heal being able to love myself.
When you're in those situations where you're looking for this stuff, immediately of course you want to go into denial. You want to make it look like, oh it's that person pissing me off. No. That person's showing you an aspect of yourself that you're ashamed of. That's what's pissing you off and you're projecting it on the other person.
Sigh. I'm trying not to have any kind of emotional response to that. I'm taking it in. I'm gonna put that in my toolbox. I probably derailed you a little bit from talking about your process.
Let me bring you to something that I always think about when I see the word "ascension", and what we've been talking about is kind of like the personal individual's soul's process, so to speak. But whenever I hear that word, I always think of the kind of collective, the human race as a whole ascending.
Talk to me a little bit about that.
Let's talk about that. Yeah.
Because ascension is connected very much to new age. This is promoted as a new age show. New age, of course, we're entering the Age of Aquarius. So we're no longer in this, you know, people who are spiritual go meditate on a mountain or go off somewhere.
We, the new spiritual warriors or healers, we're people in the community, we have families. This is one part of the new age.
The other part of the new age is a fact that the, it's not just people who ascend. The planet is also ascending. So the planet has reached its 4th initiation apparently in 1987 with the Harmonic Convergence. And now, since at least 2012, we're having 5th dimensional frequencies come in.
What does that mean? It means a couple of things. Higher frequencies make spirituality and spiritual healing a lot more accessible. For instance, when I practice reiki and I'm doing long-distance healing, I'm not only sometimes accessing the dimension of, well I'm accessing the dimension of space because I'm doing it long distance, but sometimes I'm accessing the dimension of time as well because I might have the healing done at a later time than I would, or do it in a sequence.
So that's really exciting.
What's more exciting is that it allows people in general to speed up the process of ascension. So what used to take, let's say, a lifetime to do an initiation, we can now do in a matter of years. As a matter of fact, for people who are here now listening to the show, there's a possibility, and I'm not saying a "should", but there is a possibility, it's out there, that any of us could reach the 7th initiation. In other words, escape the reincarnation cycle by the end of this lifetime.
It's kind of this idea of, okay, if it feel right for you to do that then go ahead. There's no "should" here, but that's an open possibility. And it's something that's very exciting.
So you mentioned 2012, since then there were 5th dimension, other frequencies coming in. Does that explain... like I felt when I first started Shift Your Spirits, if you go way way back in the archives to 2006, you find me kind of meditating a lot on this idea of the ascension of the Earth, of mankind in particular. And I felt this profound sense of excitement and hope and energy rising, whereas in the last few years, I almost feel like the energy has been overshot in some way, or I worry that, did we miss the train or what?
So to explain a little bit what's going on, because the Earth has ascended, that has affected us as humans ourselves. There was a possibility at one point, there was a lot of people whose vibration wasn't high enough and they weren't going to be able to survive. So this idea of this, maybe in Biblical... this "Armageddon", a mass killing off of people, that was kind of a possibility because of the ascension of the Earth.
There could have been people that didn't make it, for lack of a better term.
What ended up happening instead was, there was a lot of, we would say "lightworkers", to use the term who were able to increase their vibration, basically their "light quotient" at a very rapid pace. And because of these people bringing up their frequency, their vibration, they were able to raise up the vibration of the whole, and that happened very quickly in that period between, let's say, 1990 to 2010, in that area.
So that's what you would have been feeling.
Now it was great for everybody. We're all here. We all made it. However, it did cause a slight issue because ascension is more than just the vibration. You also have the aspects. The mental aspect, the physical aspect, and the emotional aspect I talked about earlier. Those aren't necessarily raised at the same time. That also is necessary in order to continue higher.
So when you get, at a planetary level, part of ascensioning and go towards what's the Cosmic, the next level is the Cosmic level, you're not going to be allowed to get to that level unless you go back and integrate those other aspects inside you.
So just because a person has a high rate of vibration or is a high stage of initiation in the ascension process, it doesn't necessarily mean that they're very well integrated on other levels. So you can have somebody that could even be an Ascended Master who still is having issues with thought purification, with emotional purification or emotional maturity, as you could call it.
As you think about these concepts, you think about things that are happening physically in the world, species die off, the incredible amount of pollution that we seem to have absolutely no collective perspective on, what's the story that you personally tell yourself about how that is reflected in this ascension process?
What is going on with all of that... I guess what I'm asking is, does that mean that we're failing at it miserably? Is there some other explanation for why all that stuff is happening and it's part of the process and maybe I can chill out about it.
There's a couple of ways of looking at it that are both necessary. So the first aspect is, what happens outside is a reflection of what's inside. It's very literal. So what you see outside is really what is inside you. If you see pollution outside, what that means is there's more to work on inside of you.
So people like to, they have this concept of, I've got to change the world, I have to help the world. On a spiritual level, there's no significance of importance. If you stop a conflict with your spouse, you have done something just as important as on a world level of stopping a war.
It's easy to get discouraged when you see these big problems, but you have to understand on a spiritual level, all problems are the same and you CAN make a difference. Every time that you are able to successfully deal with purifying your thoughts or your emotions, you are helping prevent disasters on a large scale in the world. You're literally doing that.
The other part of this is the fact that, even though things do look bleak, everything is happening for a reason. And part of that reason is to help us realize that we do need to work on ourselves. But also, we need to realize that we do have unlimited power. We do have the capability of turning things around, but it's never a direct... You can't directly fix anything. I think we've pretty much explained on the show already.
It's not, okay we have pollution in the world. We need to solve pollution now.
If we have pollution in the world, there's still some pollution in ourselves that we can fix. And by doing that, it will help solve... the world will solve on its own.
Hmm... So are you hopeful that enough people will become enlightened in that way that it will change things in physical reality somehow?
I have hope that no matter what happens, it's what's needed to happen. It's not even, okay, this is good or this is bad. There's no judgement, okay maybe the world will explode. But it's just, in the end, that's a material object. We as spiritual beings will live on. We will mature no matter what environment we're in.
We obviously don't want... I'm attached to this planet which is one of the reasons why I'm still here, right?
But again, we don't have to concern ourselves about external things because that external thing, that's just the movie that we're watching. That we can't control. But we have so much power to fix what's inside of us. And as long as we have hope of doing that, everything's gonna work.
Oh I like that. That gives me a lot of hope and I'm sure that that's very useful to other people listening to this as well.
Talk to me about practical stuff. Are there "techniques" helping to enable this process?
Actually, there are quite a few things that you can do, just kind of spiritual practices. Now we've already discussed a little bit about looking inside for things that need healing.
So the process of healing... Let's back up a second. The Spiritual Path in general, that is the process of self-improvement. So instead of trying to jump directly into "I want to ascend", just realize that everything you're doing to heal yourself or to improve yourself, you are on the path, okay? So you don't have to worry about it.
And also, everything that comes in life, it's almost like, just look at what's happening in your life. That is the main thing that's going to help you find what you need. Because it's reflecting back what you need in your life.
But as far as practical things that you can do, there are things like, you can repeat a mantra. You can repeat God's name. For instance, a technique you can do meditations where you will basically ask to speak to your guides, to speak to the spiritual masters. You don't need psychic abilities for this stuff. It's almost like you're using your imagination.
But anything that gives you this feeling of connectedness. Even things like go to a yoga class, right? Go to your tai chi. All this stuff is helpful.
If you're really interested in just a hundred different actual ascension techniques, there's a guy, part of what was the Ascension Movement in, I want to say, the '90s and a little later. Joshua David Stone. He wrote several books mentioning hundreds of these different little things that you can do. For instance, he talked about the whole encounter which is out of A Course in Miracles is to look at every person as if you were meeting God. Look at everything as if you're meeting God. So think of this plant in front of you as God, or the tree as God.
He has so many different ideas you can use, if that's an interest.
It sounds to me like a lot of the information or literature that you were inspired by or drawing on is more of a Buddhist teaching. What about somebody who has maybe a more traditional faith system? What do you say to that person?
So, the first thing to realize is, keep your belief system in place. When you're in the ascension process, you do not need to change the beliefs in any way whatsoever. It's only important that you recognize the necessity of self-improvement.
I like to say to people, there are as many ways to reach God as people, right? You don't need an exact path. You just need to use your own intuition. Every person has their own path. What works for one person is not gonna work for another person.
Well you and I both live in the same area in southeast Tennessee, so we encounter a lot of fundamentalist churchgoers etc. and ask you probably experience in your daily life, a lot of the people that I really love and have friendships with are very different in their faith systems from me. It's something that I always struggle with and have spent kind of a lifetime learning how to process that.
It's interesting because I'm thinking about, if we look at this thing of, this idea of it being kind of a diagnostic of what needs to be healed within ourselves, I can see this lifelong story arc of me growing up in the midst of this fundamentalist environment thinking, how the hell did I end up here? Really pissed off. I was much angrier when I was younger about it than I am now. Whereas now I have, I feel a much more elevated way of talking to people from different faith systems.
And to tell you the truth, I have found that I'm actually much more in alignment with someone who is very devout in a different faith system from me than someone who has no faith at all.
So for instance, even people who are devout Christians, are a little bit more open to the concepts of miracles and of some of the thoughts as objects kind of context that you and I are talking about.
What I'm hearing you say is, within any faith system, there is this kernel of truth about this self-improvement path. All churches have that within then.
So every religion has the truth in there. It's just a matter of recognizing what the truth is.
The other thing to realize is that our life situation, whether religious or not religious, is exactly what we need right now on our path. So if a person's religious, I actually grew up Mormon, that's exactly where you're supposed to be. There is a purpose for that.
It's definitely not something where you have to worry, oh I have to change my belief system. I need to do this or that. No. You are there. You've got to... And if you think about your own personal experience, the doing what you had to go through was what you needed to heal the aspects that you came into this life with.
As long as you have the faith that your life, what you're living, your path that you're on, that's what you need. That's been provided for you. This is not by chance.
There's one thing about this ascension conversation that you and I had that I wanted to make sure and get your thoughts on. What's the relationship between ego and ascension? Talk to me about that a little bit.
Okay, so once again, what the ego wants to do when it hears about ascension is, oh, I want this. The ego is something where... it's just life in general where we think a car is going to make us happy. We think that this relationship is going to make us happy. Well, we think ascension is going to make us happy. So the ego will use ascension for its own purposes.
And again, when you go, when you have a desire for anything, that prevents you from actually any kind of... self improvement. Because what you're doing is, now you're grasping onto something. You're thinking, okay, if I only had this, then I would be happy.
Instead, you need to stop and be like, what's going on now?
I wanted to hear you speak a little bit about this idea of handling the desire for ascension, the desire for enlightenment. I thought that was a really important thing to speak about.
Right, okay. So this is a good question because it comes up a lot as... the ego is something that is going to want... it thinks it needs things for happiness. It thinks it's gonna want this or that. Ascension or enlightenment is going to come up.
A good way of dealing with any type of desire is to realize, in the physical world, we don't get what we want when we want it. That's not going to happen but any time the ego comes up and rears its ugly head like, I want this now, that's what produces the pain.
But we have to recognize that we do have needs and we do have wants. And if there's something that we do have a need for, we do have a need for love, we do have a need for this and that. So we sit with that pain and we say, okay, I recognize this. I am in pain because I do not have this but I still realize that I would like this. I'm not going to give up the desire just because I do not have it.
Because a lot of the time, what the ego's going to do is, oh I can't have this now. I didn't really want it anyway. I never get what I want, that type of thing. So the healthy, emotional response to anything including ascension is to recognize, okay I do have this pain. I do have this desire. I want this even though I can't have it now. It's okay. I still respect the fact that I would like this.
Tell us a little bit about the work that you do and where we can connect with you online.
I'm a reiki practitioner in a holistic medicine locally in the Chattanooga area. My business is called Positive Resonance. My website address is https://pozrez.com/
Jeremy, thank you for coming on and having this conversation with me.
Slade, thank you so much for inviting me. It's been a pleasure.