Stronger, Brighter, Lighter, and Freer
Working with Jim for the last year has been more transformational than any other pursuit in the name of well-being that I've tried, and I say that as someone who’s put her heart into her own healing and growth for more than two decades. I've had wonderful therapists; I've meditated and journaled and done The Artist’s Way; and I've received energy healing and studied energy healing and visualized and affirmed and done everything else you can think of until I could have fallen over.
And I did fall over, in fact. In 2012, I got very sick with a mysterious illness that had me bed bound for six months. During that time, I stumbled on Jim’s website, and though I didn't feel ready or strong enough to contact him then, I bookmarked his site to look up later because I had the feeling that this was a good and powerful guy, someone who would be great to work with as a healer and spiritual teacher.
After I was back on my feet, if wobbly, I took one of his webinars and asked him a question about an energetic sensation I kept having. Jim’s take—from a distance, and not knowing me—felt amazingly spot on and intuitively correct, so I contacted him a little while later to see if we could work together. I was impressed when he said that we could work together, but not yet, as he saw that I was still energetically fried and unstable and exhausted from my illness (and from my whole life, frankly). He asked me to approach him in a couple of months, and I waited and did so, and then he gave me the green light for our work to begin.
I don’t even recognize the person who started working with Jim a year ago. That Tina was a fragile, shaky, soggy mess, thoroughly identified with my own victim mentality, which I’d been developing ever since I’d experienced severe sexual abuse in toddlerhood. I don’t say that to put myself down or diminish what I went through, either; I just didn't know how to inhabit this life another way.
The work is sometimes gentle, sometimes extremely intense, and always fascinating. And with the intensity and vulnerability of the work, it’s so important to have a teacher and guide that you trust, and Jim operates out of a space of terrific love and integrity. He’s clean as a whistle, powerful and caring without ever tipping into harshness or coddling. I trust him absolutely, and I don’t hand out trust like candy, either.
A year later, I find myself so much stronger and brighter and lighter and freer. The changes in me are deep, and the transformation is spilling into every area of my life. My work is getting stronger; my relationships are getting cleaned up; and I’m 500 times harder to knock over than I used to be emotionally. I feel increasingly connected to my actual self, and my habitual self that I've built up over the years—which was no longer serving me—is shriveling by the day.
Jim is the real deal. That’s the point. There’s some not-messing-around alchemy that happens when you’re lucky enough to work with him. His kitchen is full of serious heat, and if you can take it—if you can stay in there and keep working—you are going to get cooked* into something much better than when you started.
*Google Rumi’s poem about the chickpea getting boiled to see what I’m referring to here. It’s great.
Transformative Support after Awakening
Working with Jim regularly via Skype has been not only supportive, but transformative. After my bliss stage of awakening, I came to a big crash and was totally overwhelmed with all my internal issues, unprocessed emotions, family karma, and outdated beliefs. Having space with Jim every few weeks gave me the courage to be with my more fearful, painful, and uncomfortable issues.
I really was a spiritual newbie, and my awakening came out of the blue. I didn’t know what an awakening was or know very much about spirituality past reading law of attraction books! Then my whole life began to crumble starting with a painful miscarriage, loss of my job, and loss of my home, and then I discovered my partner was having an affair. It’s safe to say I was in turmoil, grief, pain, and shock. But looking back, that was when my life really opened up. I’d been covering up countless issues my whole adult life which resulted in self-hate, bulimia, bad relationships, and basically full on lack of love and joy. When awakening hit, it was like Jim says, a light got turned on to all my issues, conditioning, and fear-based beliefs. My awakening showed me everything stopping me from being and radiating the love that I am. This was both amazing and freeing (bliss stage), but also scary and overwhelming (dark night). That’s when I was ready for help.
What drew me to Jim most (out of the sea of spiritual teachers around now) was instead of telling me what I should or shouldn’t do, Jim provided the necessary conditions for me to become my own teacher; my autonomy was greatly respected. I wasn’t just learning someone else’s beliefs or reading about others’ experiences. This is helpful sometimes, don’t get me wrong, but to actually experience your own healing, grieving, and gaining of self-knowledge in your own individual way and time is what really brought about my transformations and helped me let go. That’s exactly what I’ve learnt to do in our sessions together because Jim would lovingly point me back to myself. At times this can be extremely unsettling, especially when working with things like shame or fear. But Jim’s presence is so vast and powerful that I feel safe to explore deeper issues that I may struggle with alone.
I think the best advice I can give to anyone thinking of working with Jim is to be as honest as possible and trust the process. The sessions are a true gift, but experimenting with different practices for contemplation, healing, self-awareness, and self-love also helped me hugely with integrating my sessions and my awakening. It’s no secret the spiritual path is messy and at times confusing. Giving myself a place like these sessions has felt loving and true and has greatly helped me to blossom into my authentic self. Jim is a true gift to humanity, and my life has been blessed having him as my teacher. Much, much gratitude.
More in Tune With His Inner Teacher
Over several months, Jim helped me to retrieve parts of myself that had been swept underneath the social conditioning carpet. I now feel more in tune with myself than I ever have. With every session I find myself submitting more and more to the tidal wave of awareness, allowing it to wash over my self-concept so I may finally join the ocean that I had long forgotten I was a part of.
Jim's warm presence, love, and trust help to create the perfect healing environment (even at 800 miles apart). Because of this, opening up to him (and yourself) becomes very possible, and real progress can be made.
In my opinion, Jim's real gift is his ability to allow you to experience the teacher within. He has shown me that almost all issues I have can be solved by looking within, and not without. In this way, Jim's sessions actually promote two things: healing, and learning HOW to heal.
These sessions have impacted my life in the most incredible of ways. I can't thank you enough, Jim!
Kundalini Awakening Support
I had a kundalini awakening in early 2014 and was shocked and overwhelmed by it. Fortunately, I found Jim's blog right away, and it was a lifeline for me. Soon afterward, I contacted Jim and started working with him to heal old wounds and embrace this new element of my life. At this time (October 2015), we have been working together for over a year.
His blog offers a wealth of useful guidance for anyone who has awakened or is serious about the spiritual path. I have learned so much from him and am deeply grateful for the time he has given me and the work he has done.
Best wishes to you, Jim and to anyone who is reading this.
Experiencing Profound Shifts in Self Awareness
I have been working with Jim for a year – around 25 sessions – and in that time, there have been profound shifts in the way I see myself and the world. From the beginning I felt that Jim was someone who communicated from a genuine place of awakening with complete sincerity, and he has continued to do that with clarity, humor, and directness. His sessions create a space of openness and love that is unlike any other I have experienced. Over time, this space and Jim’s intuitive, down-to-earth guidance has enabled me to have the courage to look honestly at my constructs of personality and ingrained assumptions about life and begin to uncover the truth which they obscure. Now it feels like I am coming home to a place of deep trust and wonderful lightness. Yes, getting to know – or un-know – myself with Jim has been an absolute blessing and a true joy –Jim, I can’t thank you enough!
January 30, 2014
More At Peace and Learning Through Relationships
I've been working with Jim since January 2014, and it has been life changing. It's tough to explain in words, but I'll try. I found his blog when I was looking up "soulmates" during a tough breakup. I was confused. "'How can it be?' I thought, 'This was it. What happened?'" Anyway, he talks about this part a lot, and it's really helpful.
When I started reading his blog, I knew pretty much right away I needed to work with him. It was one of those truths that you just know, and that intuition was completely right. It's exactly what I needed in my life right then. I learned that relationships are one of the best ways to get to know myself deeper. Now when I'm forced to deal with something, I remember to or Jim reminds me to look inside myself. Then I can see that those situations are opportunities to discover a little bit more truth and gain a little bit more awareness. It's empowering to know that all the love I need is inside, and in fact, all the answers are inside. In general, I feel more at peace and more compassion for myself and others.
My life has also changed outwardly with making more choices that are true to me. The biggest choice to date is changing my lifestyle temporarily to do some volunteering and traveling in a different part of the world. I've learned to trust my intuition a lot more, which has helped me with a lot of scary decisions.
Another great part has been connecting with one of Jim's other students. She was my "big sister" for 6 months, and we talked weekly to support this work. It's paid off a lot. It's so fulfilling to have a friendship from the same level of awareness, to take responsibility for our own feelings, and to get support for this in the rest of our lives. It's helped a lot with my other relationships. Of course, we're still continuing to talk regularly as friends.
Overall, this has been an amazing journey of healing and fully embracing life. Thank you so much, Jim!
Facilitating Self-healing and Self-discovery
I have been on a spiritual quest as far back as I can remember. I do not see the world the typical way. I have always known the standard by which the majority operates is some how dysfunctional. I have worked with many different healers, natural, and allopathic, and I find Jim Tolles to be unique in his approach. I find my sessions with Jim to be very fulfilling. It is very important for me to participate in my own welfare. When I work with Jim, he states that I'm the one doing the work. This is very important to me. I believe only one's own self can know what is in need of care. Jim Tolles facilitates that. The typical doctor/patient relationship usually puts the patient in a victim position. Jim Tolles does not. Thank you kindly for all your help.
Love and Blessings.
"In my journey back to Spirit over the last seven years or so I've lay in, crawled, and walked through some very dark, scary, lonely, and unfamiliar places. I've sought answers, insight, wisdom, anything, and everything I felt could help me shed some light on this life's darkness, confusion, loneliness, and despair.
I painstakingly battled through, then learned to learn from, years of dealing with all of this through misuse of alcohol; clingy, needy and hideout relationships; bulimia; and many paths that were keeping me so far from myself.
Throughout my climb out of my own hell I found many great teachers in the form of spiritual authors, therapists, and awakened souls, but none played such an integral part in my coming home as this site, Jim's wonderful work, and Jim himself.
Words often feel so lacking in their ability to point to something indescribable as do these right now in my attempt to explain what Jim and his work have gifted me in my journey. It's quite ironic to say that considering it was the words in this blog that spoke directly to my soul, to my spirit and that had me in tears of relief as I first experienced the open, loving, egoless, truth filled pages here. The pure honesty, clarity of vision of life, integrity, humor, compassion, understanding, wisdom, and unconditional love with which these pages are filled was and is heart warming and soul soothing!
That day there was the first of many full breaths, relaxing into and dropping into my deeper true self, letting go, trusting in, and allowing of my spirit to spring forth in all its fabulousness and fullness. I knew instantaneously I had finally found the garden holding the glistening gate home.
Over the next year I sat daily in this garden filling myself up on its freedom finding truths, making much use of the many freely offered tools and just feeding my very soul on it's nurturing and nourishing soil...This was my haven as I paved my way back home.
After this year, I felt intuitively moved to contact Jim and did so without hesitation.
From the very beginning I felt a deep, honest, and open connection with Jim as though I had always known him. I found and find his non-judgmental, absolute and palpable presence, sense of humor, gentleness, and the ease with which he holds a space creates a safe, comfortable, and unconditionally accepting cocoon in which I could let go into my own unique metamorphosis.
Within a very short period I was comfortable enough to let down my walls and drop into some extremely dark, closed-off, and scary spaces within myself knowing that Jim was holding and supporting me in it.
He was very clear from the beginning that he would not advise me or tell me what to do as I have my own inner guide--my own knowing to follow--but that he would support me and shine the light of my own awareness wherever it needed to go. With Jim's support I learned and practiced trusting this knowing which I had lost the ability to do.
His patience, empathy, kindness, support, encouragement, care, and love have been and still are unwavering. There's never been a silly question, a question asked too many times, a place too dark for him to visit with me, a judgment, or anything I could possibly have a bad word to say about.
The biggest thing, among many, that I have learned from Jim is to trust in myself, trust in my inner knowing, my spirit.
In learning to trust again my life has changed so much, especially in the last year, and although there have been dark places visited, there have been invaluable realizations, releases, and shifts. My Spirit is back with a capital S singing it's soulful song :)
Knowing that Jim is there and was going to be there for all our sessions created the essential cocoon I needed to come back to my singing spirit self.
Jim, I am eternally grateful for all that I've been blessed to receive through you just being you. The pure love and light that you're sharing, teaching about, and spreading is a sacred gift that I am again blessed to experience and to also witness through your work.
I could go on forever but will simply and wholeheartedly say, "thank you" from my depths. You have given more than can be said to this one soul as I know you have and will do many more."
Learning to Listen to Her Own Guidance
Mustering up the courage to contact Jim a little over a year ago has been one of the greatest things I have done for myself. I love working with him, and it is great to see how much my life has transformed. One important way my world has changed is that it is a much more fun place. Jim’s goofiness and lightheartedness has helped me reclaim the playful part of me. He has also been very encouraging as I started to break out of my shell and explore the many lovely things in this world. Having come from only knowing constant judgment, it was freeing to be supported in this compassionate, gentle, and nonjudgmental way, especially as I started to explore my creative side. He had a lot of respect for my own process, and so I always felt like I had a lot of space to discover what was right for me in my own way. Furthermore, he helped me empower myself as he always stressed the importance of finding what is in my heart, and I began to listen to guidance I did not know I possessed. As I went within, many parts of myself that no longer served me naturally fell away and have been replaced by much more joy and awareness.
Jim has also been an invaluable guide in my experiences with spiritual sexuality--a big love of mine and an important part of my transformation. I am so grateful that I had his clarity and support navigating this often murky world. I got a little confused at times, but he always brought sexuality back to the heart, which helped me find what was right for me. Also, I appreciate that I feel very comfortable and safe discussing this topic with him. Reuniting spirituality with sexuality allowed my own sexuality to blossom without shame and become one of my favorite modalities through which to connect with myself.
After starting to work with Jim in August 2012, every aspect of my life has improved. The person that I used to be seems like somebody else. It’s been a great blessing to have Jim in my life. All in all, I highly recommend working with Jim if you are interested in doing so!
Invaluable Long-Term Spiritual Tools
"Jim Tolles has been a huge catalyst in my spiritual awakening, which began 5 years ago. For me, it did not begin at a specific place or time, but has been a continuing evolution of becoming aware of the vast depths of my Truth. I had no concept of where to turn to in regards to support on this very unique path. That's when God put Jim in my life. I knew he was an authentic source of guidance for me when he refrained from projecting his own opinions, making sure to always remind me that I have my own answers. He showed unconditional respect, patience, and compassion as I released seemingly unsurpassable amounts of pain and began to embody all that which I AM. Jim never forced me to go to places of healing I wasn't ready for.
He's also a great tuning fork for pointing me to others that could help me continue to grow. This concept of being dispensable is proof that Jim is not doing this work for his own personal growth, but for each person's highest good. After being his student for over a year, I decided to take a break from our regular sessions and embody these tools into my daily life. Since then, I've found myself being more grounded in the embodiment of my Truth more than ever before. Jim encouraged me to make my dreams a reality when I didn't have faith and didn't know what I wanted. With that, I am learning aspects of natural movement therapies. I am also able to express my own gift as an energetic healer through my career in physical therapy.
Jim mentioned to me to look into Kundalini Yoga some time ago. Since then Kundalini Yoga has become one of my primary daily practices, and I am now highly involved in my local Kundalini Yoga community. Now that I am my own reference point for my source of Joy, I have the most fulfilling and healing relationships I have ever had in my life so far. This process, however, does not have an end. I am evolving and shifting all the time, which is why the invaluable tools Jim has shared with me continue to provide avenues of healing and clarity for me. Everything we have talked about in the past continues to be embodied in my daily life. So when I am going through difficult shifts, I have the ability to see myself as a witness to what is happening and yet feel the depths of it simultaneously.
Needless to say, Jim is offering healing for our collective Consciousness in many ways now and to come."
Guidance I Really Needed
"As I began my spiritual awakening, I was struggling to find the help and guidance that I really needed. I was led to Jim's website, and we began to exchange e-mails and phone conversations. Jim was very knowledgeable with his own direct experiences and helped to guide me with my own awakening. Jim is very non-judgmental and provided unconditional support.
Thanks again for all of your help and support!"
Online Third-Party Review of the BlogHere was a nice review that got done about my blog and me.
Jim Tolles' Spiritual Awakening Process
by Lisa Pena
Profiles and Stories from People About Spiritual Awakening
Here's a really cool story about an awakening and my ebook.
A Profile in Spiritual Awakening
Other Reviews and Feedback for the Blog
"This is the BEST spiritual site I have ever read on the internet. I am going through an awakening and I look forward to reading your blogs. Every question I have is being answered. Thank you for being a channel to all who can receive."
-- Diane E.
"Thank you for the beautiful blog you have put together. You have to have the best spiritual awakening blog around. You have put a lot of effort into it. Thank you. It has a wealth of information for those trying to find their way… it's very inspiring..."
-- Joe M.
The photo comes from my friend and reader, Becky Stiller. You can check out her beautiful work on her flickr link.