Book Launch in November Butterflies: Volume Two

On October 4th it will be one year since my first book, Volcanoes was launched. That launch was held in my hometown (city) of Melfort, Saskatchewan. A day doesn’t go by when I don’t give thanks for Dr. Eben Alexander and Karen Newell’s keynote address & meditation workshop in conjunction with my book launch. They answered one of mankind’s all-consuming questions, Do God and Heaven Exist? They also shared their wealth of knowledge in the field of near-death experiences (NDE) and mindfulness meditation.

From October up until this spring I worked diligently along with many other writers to complete and publish the second book, Butterflies, in the series. At the beginning of August, I received a Book Excellence Award for Volcanoes, the first book in the series, Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus. This was an honour and came as a bit of a surprise. There were close to 300 entries in the field of Death and Dying literature and the books that were judged came from all across North American and Europe. It was an absolute privilege to be named as a finalist.

I have also taken a leap of faith to have the first book republished through Balboa Press, which is a division of Hay House Publishing. I feel the audience that Balboa connects with, will help give my book, Volcanoes, an even larger voice in the self-help field and on the literary stage.

Butterflies Launches on November 1st and 2nd

I am now preparing for my second book, Butterflies, book launch. I have included all the information below in the hopes that you will join me for this pivotal event in Melfort. I met Maureen Pisani at the Chopra Center in San Diego during a Ten-Day Perfect Health retreat last December. Maureen’s presentation there set me on a journey of an even deeper self-discovery. Maureen is a wealth of knowledge that all can learn from. She is professional, sincere and has a sense of humour that lights up any room she enters. I was overjoyed when she agreed to come and help me with my launch. Her wisdom will touch all who decide to attend either or both events. I hope you will consider joining us Friday or Saturday. Or even better, notice the special pricing for when you purchase both tickets together. Let’s make this an event that’ll be remember for years to come.

FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 1: Keynote Address & Book Launch

7:30 PM – 10:00 PM

Hosted by: Shelley Zwingli, and featuring Hypnotherapist, Maureen Pisani

Kerry Vickar Centre: CJVR Performing Arts Theatre

Maureen Pisani is hosted by me, Shelley Zwingli. I’ll be launching my second book, Butterflies – Extraordinary Stories from Ordinary People in the series, Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus. This book shares stories from 17 people who have crossed paths with me in life. These people have shown true resilience as they faced extremely challenging events in their lives. We have much to learn from reading these narratives.

I’ve invited Maureen to give a presentation and workshop in the hope that people who may be coping with any of life’s overwhelming issues can find the power of resilience that lives within them. Maureen assures us that if we can change our minds, we can transform our lives.

Maureen is an author and motivational speaker who utilizes her experiences to highlight how each of us has hidden strengths within us. As a hypnotherapist, Maureen is at the Mastery Level in all 4 modalities – Hypnotherapy, Therapeutic Guided Imagery, Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), and Reiki Energy work.  In addition, she is the only hypnotherapist who has been a director and instructor in two nationally accredited colleges and is also a trainer for NLP.  Because of her medical and scientific training and background, she is also the only hypnotherapist who is a co-author of a research paper issued by the Neuroscience Department at UCLA.  She is the resident hypnotherapist at the renowned Chopra Center in La Costa, San Diego County, CA.

Maureen has authored 9 books and produced more than 25 hypnotic CDs. She is the founder of Pro-Thrive Science-Based Hypnotherapy where she works with groups and individuals, in person or online, to help them go from just surviving to truly thriving.

SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 2: Achieving & Sustaining Resilience Workshop

9:00 AM – 1:00 PM

Led by: Maureen Pisani

Kerry Vickar Centre: CJVR Performing Arts Theatre

Message from Maureen:

Each of us has been tossed head first into a ‘valley’ of life, where our heart was ripped out from our chest, the earth was pulled from underneath us, we were betrayed by the one we trusted the most, or someone we loved had the unthinkable happen to them. We ended up in the darkest of dark places, where we either stayed because it was simply too hard to extricate ourselves from its depth; or in spite of all odds, we clawed our way out.

The definition of resilience is ‘the capacity to recover quickly from difficulties.’ Most of us have experienced life giving us its ‘1-2 punch’. Resilience, in my opinion, is the ability to claw our way out repeatedly, from whichever ‘valley’ we find ourselves in. Sustaining that level of resilience is the TRUE SUCCESS IN LIFE!

Maureen Pisani C.Ht., T.N.L.P., Motivational Speaker, Author & Hypnotherapist, will be leading the ‘Achieving & Sustaining Resilience Workshop’.  She will utilize the Emotional Freedom Technique (E.F.T.) and Hypnotherapy to walk us through the realizations of how bad those ‘valleys’ were, how much we have learned from them; how strong we truly are; and how capable we are to sustain this successful and triumphant style of living.

TICKET INFORMATION

FRIDAY, November 1: Keynote Address & Book Launch – $25.00

SATURDAY, November 2: Achieving & Sustaining Resilience Workshop – $25.00

OR Purchase BOTH for only – $39.00

Tickets are available at:

Modern Flare – 712 Main Street – Melfort

George Home Hardware – 312 Main Street – Melfort

             Melfort Spiffy Car Wash – 705 Saskatchewan Drive East

You can also purchase your tickets online at: 

https://butterflies-book-launch.eventbrite.com

***Books will be available for purchase at both events.***

My Book Project – Nearing Completion!

I am filled with mixed emotions as I sit down to write this post. I’m full of gratitude for the opportunity to share my story. The love and support my family and friends have shown towards me from the onset of this project has me forever indebted. I’m sure there were many times over the past five years they would have wished I’d just stop talking about the spiritual side of life. There were many times I wondered what my life would be like if I never had the near death experience and the waking visions. Would my faith and spiritual belief be as strong as it is today? I highly doubt it.

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Excerpt #15 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

(Continued from Excerpt #14)

Branelle turns the television on and makes sure the volume is very low. The voices on the television are more than I can handle. Even the quiet volume is amplified. This extra disturbance is too much of a distraction for my already troubled mind and soul. I lay here a while longer, then ask her to shut the TV off. Branelle realizes that I’m struggling to relax so she suggests some deep breathing exercises. She thinks they might help unwind my tensed up body.

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Excerpt #12 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

(Continued from Excerpt #11)

Who can I turn to?

The visions are not something that can be proven by science and that reality has me very nervous. Throughout my life I have learned if science can’t explain an occurrence then it must not be reality.  This thought has me very sad and uncertain about who I can turn to for help. I am also aware of the fact that if mankind can’t put his scientific reasoning and ego aside while dealing with the spirit world I don’t have chance at getting the assistance needed to pull me through this strange yet beautiful state.

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Excerpt #9 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

(Continued from Excerpt #8)

I reach under my pillow and find my rosary once more. I start to pray it again in silence. I know Trent needs some sleep, his work day is fast approaching and I have kept him awake for most of the night. I can’t tell him everything that’s happening to me. It’s not fair for me to expect him to understand it all. I don’t understand it. I don’t want to overwhelm him, even though I’m sure I already have. I lay here wondering if I’m going crazy, and just as quickly as that thought enters my mind the angels start to sing again. I now know that I’m not going crazy, this is all so beautiful and holy. I know it comes from our loving God. I’m just struggling with how is it’s possible for me to be in this physical world and also be experiencing the spiritual realm, all at the same time.

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Excerpt Post #5 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

Excerpt Post #5 – Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

(Continued from Excerpt Post #4)

Awake and fully aware

 

Hearing the heavenly choir has sent my physical mind into despair. At the same time my spiritual soul is connecting to a loving power that is trying to calm all my fears. In this very moment I am of sound mind and I’m consciously aware of all my surroundings. I am fully awake. The only medication that I’ve been on for the past few days is an anti-biotic. I’m absolutely sure it doesn’t have these side effects. I’m physically alive but also experiencing the heavenly realm. The only way I can deal with this battle that is raging within me is to pray. I know that I must ask for help from God the Father, God the Son and God the Holy Spirit. I need to ask for God’s will to be done. I need to put my will aside. Whatever happens to me now is all a part of God’s divine plan for me.

The Nativity by Federigo Barocci

The Nativity – Federigo Barocci

I will also turn to our heavenly mother, the Queen of Heaven. Mary is the true mother of us all; she knows our pain. She watched her son Jesus, the Son and Savior of mankind, hang and die on the cross. What a heart break for a mother to witness. She is the purest of pure and God holds her in very high regard.  I will ask Mother Mary to intercede and pray for me as well. I will pray the rosary and plead for guidance and wisdom from our Heavenly Father. The Creator  had chosen Mary many years ago to deliver our Saviour to the world. God knew she was a faithful servant. I now need her prayers to help me through this struggle.

Trent and I are lying side by side in bed holding hands. We pray the rosary together. We pray for my healing and for me to be allowed to stay here on Earth a while longer. I’m extremely distraught and I know that Trent is very worried about what all has been taking place. When we finish the rosary he snuggles up to me and I try once again to settle down.

 

The waking visions start…

1:30 AM, Thursday, April 4, 2013

I glance at the clock it’s now 1:30 AM. I have been in bed for about three hours and have not been able to sleep. I’m still very worried about what will happen to my family if I should pass. We are all dying—every day we are one day closer to our earthly death. This reality doesn’t seem to bother us on a daily basis until an incident brings our mortality to the forefront.  I’m facing this reality right now; I can hardly deal with this certainty. How can I be here in this physical form and be hearing heavenly music?  This almost seems impossible.

Young Boy Vision

I try to sleep again and before I know what’s happening to me a vision enters my mind. This vision is much different than my NDE while in ICU at the Victoria Hospital. I was sleeping during my NDE; this new vision has appeared in my mind while I’m still awake.Blog - Young Boy (a) My eyes are closed but my mind has been opened to see a picture. It’s similar to a dream but much clearer, plus its happening while I’m fully awake. In my mind I’m being shown a picture of an eight to 10-year-old boy. He’s smiling a bright, beautiful smile. He has big eyes and chin length blonde curly hair. He is surrounded by friends in the picture. The focus is on him and this whole scene is in color. He looks familiar to me but I’m not sure who he is.

Once again I wake Trent and explain to him what has just happened. I feel horrible waking him but I’m becoming more and more distraught. I can’t seem to stop what’s happening to me. I’m an emotional wreck. I’m wondering when this unfathomable experience will end. I’m tired and wanting to sleep but every time I close my eyes and try to relax the spiritual realm makes another connection with me. I’m exhausted; almost running out of tears. Through all this turmoil Trent remains calm.

(Continued in Excerpt Post #6)

Ask, Listen and be Watchful,

Shelley Transparent Signature

A Brief Chat with Jesus (Part II): Guest Post

Good-Friday-crosses-1(Continued from Part I)

Shelley’s Intro: A recurring dream on Good Friday annually for three years has kept Suzanne Paschall searching for its truest meaning for 15 years since…

 

Unanswered questions

First, Why do I have this dream over and over? Second, why on Good Friday, the commemoration of Jesus’ death by crucifixion on the cross?
Next, is there any symbolism in the setting – the rocky path, the cliff on one side and meadow on the other, the weather? In good fiction, these are primary storytelling elements that can serve as metaphors, foreshadowing events to come, or setting a mood or tone to heighten the scene’s meaning.
Then, why does he brush my hand away, and why does he seem to show little if any emotion? The archetype of Jesus in my memory was always presented as a good, kindly figure. This Jesus was not only not kind, but a bit stand-offish.
Also, he was clearly (to me) Jesus, and not an angel, so why did his actions and speech seem to indicate that he was an angel?
And then finally, the most intriguing question: What the heck is the meaning of the one and only statement he makes to me in this dream? “You cannot discern the lips of an angel.”
Over the years, on the occasions it would re-surface in my memory, I’ve played the game of trying to change the emphasis on different words of the sentence to see if a meaning that made sense might shake out of an altered reading.
You cannot discern the lips of an angel,” for instance, meant to me that there was something wrong with me, some obstruction in my head or heart, that was keeping me from recognizing him as who he was? Was this about my lapse of faith?
But, “you cannot discern the lips of an angel,” might read as a chastisement; or an enlightenment about the nature of angels; that they are un-discernible, so there is no point in trying to do so (by reaching out Angels & Jesusto touch them).
“You cannot discern the lips of an angel” is a most fascinating read, and could be a piece all on its own…spiritual discernment, as it turns out, is a big deal to God.
And discerning angels is actually a thing, as I learned once when I put the actual phrase Jesus spoke into Google’s search engine to see what would transpire.
In short, spiritual discernment is about a person’s ability to see the difference between truth and error; right and wrong, good and evil, ultimately, Satan and God.

Now it makes sense…?

So, wow again. With this reading I can easily go down the rabbit hole of my own co-dependency, and my resulting lack of clarity and ability to make decisions; never knowing the right or wrong answer. That could be why I couldn’t relate to any meaning for me at the time; I was in a big denial state about my situation. But now, in recovery, it actually makes a great deal of sense.
Reconnecting with God for me is in its early stages, but powerful things have already happened. My ability to “discern” is growing; I can feel it. I’m still a novice, and old habits die hard, but I’m also becoming more aware every day.
And, to be honest, I’ve stayed stuck at the word discernment in the sentence, so haven’t even made it to putting the emphasis on lips or angel yet. I’m still working on it. One day at a time. When Shelley asked me if I’d be willing to share this story for this Good Friday season, I hesitated, and then agreed. Mostly because she is such a dear person and I trust her, but also because maybe, just maybe, the answer isn’t inside me after all, but is out there somewhere…with one of you. Or maybe one of you is meant to consider your own ability to discern from reading this post.
Blessings for this Lenten season, and especially for a prayerful, thoughtful Good Friday filled with gratitude, and a glorious Easter Sunday of praise, hope and love.
I’ve always liked Socrates’ assertion that “the unexamined life is not worth living.” And this dream series event bears examining. If only because it still won’t leave me, years after its actual occurrence.

Ask, and you shall receive,
Suzanne's Signature Trans

A Brief Chat with Jesus (Part I): Guest Post


Intro from Shelley:
Part of our journey while we’re here on Earth is to be of service to others. At some point in our lives a profound spiritual awakening may take place. There’s a story in each one of us that has us opening up to the possibility of a Greater Power’s existence.

Suzanne Paschall, my editor/publisher and author of The Pink Notebook Project, recently shared with me a life altering, soul awakening event, and I asked her if she would put pen to paper to also share the story with you. The next two blog postings will help us open up to the beautiful reality of how God works. The Creator lovingly sends signs to us in our darkest moments. We are being guided and encouraged to stay on the path of life which will give us the most soulful growth.

I would like to thank Suzanne for sharing her Divine experience, A Brief Chat with Jesus. I know these posts will open up a much-needed connection for some of my readers.  I also want to invite you to share a piece of your story. You can do so through the Your Stories tab on my website.  It is through sharing parts of our life’s journey we aid in healing ourselves and each other. We are all here to grow in love and compassion. We are all teacher and student in this miraculous incarnation.

Ask, Listen and be Watchful,

Shelley

A Brief Chat with Jesus  (Part I) 

LucidDreamingI’ve always been a dreamer. I mean that literally. I’m what’s referred to in dream literature as a recaller, meaning I often remember quite a lot of detail about many dreams, long after I have them. Over the years I’ve collected books on dream research, and at one point in my life tried to practice lucid dreaming.

My dreams have been prescient (foretelling); recurring or, as I now understand, direct connections with other figures, like what I believe happened to  me when I had the same dream every Good Friday night for three years in a row.

My relationship with God, or my Higher Power, has been nebulous all my life. Though I was raised in the Lutheran faith, with the support of a fine preacher who shepherded me through Catechism, I fell away from the Church later in life for some very specific reasons. Over time, I felt like the only “higher power” I could rely on was me, and wow, I worked that martyrdom hard for a few decades.

I don’t recall what exactly was happening in my life when the recurring Jesus dream started some 15 years ago, or when it stopped recurring a few years later. But the details of it have never left me, and have left me with unanswered questions.

The dream

The dream begins with me walking on a narrow dirt path that winds along the edge of a very high cliff. Beyond the cliff to my right I can see a massive expanse of ocean. The horizon is dark and changing, a storm is brewing. But I don’t feel any sense of temperature, of cold or heat. I know I am dreaming. I don’t feel any emotions, except a little curiosity as I advance slowly on this path, taking care not to trip on the occasional stones that appear in the path.
To the left of the path is a wide thatch of wild meadow. The growth is patchy and scraggly; it’s not a tended crop field; nor a garden. The area seems deserted, and there is a forest off in the extreme distance left and forward.
I feel the wind pick up, freshen off the ocean, and now I do feel temperature—a tinge of cool, moist air—as I approach a bend in the path that slowly rises up. I round the corner, and my tread become uncontrollably leaden. It’s as if I’m being compelled by some greater force to slow my steps. I climb up the rise and a figure slowly comes into view.
It’s a man sitting quietly on a rock on a small plateau at the cliff’s edge. There are numerous boulder-like stones strewn at this spot. The man is sitting calmly, clearly waiting for someone to approach. I assume it’s me, because I’m the only other person here. I approach him very slowly, and more details come into view. He’s wearing a long white robe, with a rope belt tied casually at his side. He has long brown wavy hair. His hands are in his lap. He’s facing away from the ocean, looking directly at me. He is neither smiling nor scowling. His face is completely passive, expressionless, except for his brown eyes that look blandly at me. He is otherwise as motionless as a statue.
He doesn’t speak, but seems to be waiting for me to ask a question. I don’t know how I know this, but I do. However, I have no idea what is the question I’m supposed to ask.
I stop in front of him, perhaps a foot away. We look at each other. For some reason, I reach out with my hand to touch his lips. (I have no idea why I do this.) His reaction is strange, and becomes the first of my questions that I have after the dream. He moves his hand up quickly to push my hand away. His face doesn’t change, but it clearly appears to be a gesture of rebuff.
I feel confusion bloom on my face, but I can’t speak. Then he does, and he says, quite clearly but without emotion, “You cannot discern the lips of an angel.”

It reverberates inside me, repeating and repeating. I continue to look at him. I glance over at the ocean, at the approaching weather, and wonder why I’m here, and what I’m supposed to be learning. I feel quite strongly that he is Jesus, and that this is a lesson. That I’ve been brought to this precipice for a reason, and that unlike a dream, this appears to be a direct communication with this figure, executed through a sleep-state. Again, I don’t know how I know this, but I most emphatically do. I have years and years of attentive dream experience to compare this to, and this encounter stands unique.

This is where the dream-state experience ends, and I wake up. I then experience this again on the next Good Friday and I have this dream for several years—on this night and only on this night.
I never forget it, it never changes…and I never figure out the central questions that stay with me to this day.

(Continued in Part II – Unanswered Questions)

Excerpt Post #1: Volcanoes, Butterflies & Jesus – Shelley Zwingli

4:00 PM, Wednesday, April 3, 2013 – Victoria Hospital, Prince Albert, Saskatchewan

Branelle and I wait patiently for some news on my discharge.Blog Pic Excerpt VB&J I share with her what had happened to me earlier that afternoon. The near death experience has shaken me up. The reality of what I saw has her concerned, too. Branelle knows that I would only speak the truth. I want to go home more than ever now, because if I’m still dying I don’t want to die in the hospital. I can’t share the near death experience with the staff because I believe they will never discharge me after hearing about my experience. They may even think that I’m mentally unstable, which I know I’m not.

5:30 PM

The doctor walks into my room. He and the head nurse have decided to let me go home. He makes me promise that I will consume 2000 calories daily until my weight is back to normal. I want to go home to heal, so I give him my word. I thank him for all that he has done for me; he wishes me a speedy recovery. I hold back the tears as he walks out of the room. He’s an amazing doctor. I owe my life to him and his colleagues.

I call Trent to share my good news; he had just been leaving our house to head to Prince Albert to stay with me. Over the next 30 minutes Branelle and I gather up my belongings and pick up an antibiotic from the pharmacy and then we are homeward bound. What a great feeling! I’m silently hoping with any luck a good night’s sleep will help restore my body to its normal state.

Ever since I crossed over I’ve noticed my senses have been heightened. Upon leaving the hospital and going outside, this is even more noticeable. My sight has never been so clear, colors are extremely vibrant and objects are more defined than before my NDE. I almost feel as though I’ve had corrective eye surgery. This change in vision has me somewhat concerned about my future–my heightened awareness has me very nervous.  My hearing has also changed; all noises seem to be intensely loud. On a scale from 1-10, with 1 being quiet and 10 being extremely loud, my scale has increased by about five points. This audible heightening is not enjoyable, I feel as though the people around me are almost yelling when they talk. I find myself turning down the volume on the car radio, even though Branelle says it’s not at all loud.

We are halfway home when our trip is interrupted by a phone call. Brennon has called me from Costa Rica and it‘s great to hear his voice. I share with him a very short version of my NDE, and tell him that I’ll share more detail with him when he returns from his holiday. I don’t want to alarm him.

Branelle now makes the final turn off the highway onto our gravel road. We are getting closer to home and I’m hoping that my release from the hospital was the right decision. I don’t want to discuss with her how I’m feeling. This heightened state of awareness has me panicking inwardly. I keep my thoughts to myself; I don’t want to cause her any extra stress.

Blog Picture - Crisp PrairieAs we head north down our country road I glance across the prairie landscape and wherever my eyes travel I get a very defined image. I’m witnessing a country scene that I’ve never really noticed before. I have lived down this country road for almost 30 years and today the hills, trees, and farmyards have more detail than I remember. In every direction I look I see things that I’ve missed in the past. I’m also noticing my entire body feels different. I feel as though a part of my body is missing, but in a good way– somewhat carefree, I have a floating sensation. I know that my body is still physically alive and grounded in this car seat but the rest of my being, along with my senses, seems to be weightless. The colors and scenery that I’m noticing are much more appealing than ever before. I’m enjoying the crisp hues that clothe this early spring landscape.

Once again I reach over and turn down the radio; I don’t want my thoughts to have to compete with this unnecessary noise. My body is wound up and it’s craving silence at this very moment. I think back to the experience that just happened a few hours ago. I begin to silently pray to God for some help and understanding. I’m pleading for a little more time here on Earth. As Branelle and I pull the car into our yard a thought enters my mind:  Will I live through the night, or will God take me home? I know perfectly well that my body is not in a fully recovered state, and with my senses all on high alert I’m struggling to make sense of this mystifying body-soul experience. I know without a doubt that my soul has just returned from heaven and even though I have loved what I was shown I’m still very fearful of leaving my family behind if I am to pass away in the next few days.

(Continued in Excerpt Post #2)

Ask, Listen and be Watchful

Shelley Transparent Signature