A Lighter View         

A Magazine for the creative, spiritual & holistic community                                  


Past Articles and Teachings




     FEBRUARY 22, 2023

   Manifesting is Like Building
   and Flying a Paper Airplane


  1.  You need to have a design.
     2.  You need to have a destination.
        3.  You need to follow the design correctly.
           4.  Your need to use good materials.
                5.  You need to direct its flight.
                   6.  You need to launch it with force.
                      7.  You need to let go!

                              HAPPY FLYING! 

     JANUARY 22, 2023

           Point of Judgement

Purpose: To reverse the point at which you made a judgement against a person and withdrew, became angry or felt conflict.
     Example: Someone was angry at one of your friends, so you chose to withdraw your connection from the person who was angry.

Reversing the Moment
: Breathe and relax. Go back to the first time you remember observing or hearing the person say or do something that made you upset, angry or frustrated. Listen and observe the memory from a place of non-judgement. Look beneath the words and actions to the fear, reasoning or frustration in the person. Ask for guidance to help you see and feel from a new perspective, Observe the part of the person doing the action or speaking. Does it come from their mind, their heart, or their physical body? Send compassion, love, or understanding to that part.

Look at your own motives for judging the person. What did you gain? How could this situation help you to be less judgmental?

 Breathe deeply and release the situation.

Return to the moment. Make amends if needed and move forward with a new understanding.

Give thanks.

     FEBRUARY 22, 2022

What? I Can Change My Brain!

Recent research tells us that not only do we continue to grow new brain cells, but we can also reprogram areas of our brain to serve new functions. Our brain has plasticity. Joe Dispenza D.C., author of Evolve Your Brain, puts it this way, “We are only beginning to understand the brain’s ability to change both functionally and structurally.” Sounds terrific, doesn’t it? Maybe yes, depends on what you change.

From what I understand, our brains are much like a topographical map with different areas devoted to a lifetime of knowledge and skills learned from our environment through our senses. The more we study or focus on a certain subject or situation, the larger that area becomes on the map, and the less space other less active areas occupy.

I find the example of a garden an easy analogy to understand how this works. Like plants in the garden space, each part of our life has its designated space while connected to the whole map. When we plant new seeds or fertilize an area of the garden, it grows and spreads. Our brain map acts the same way when we take up a new interest or focus on a particular subject or activity for a period of time. The activated region begins to encroach on other areas that are not activate and overtake their space.

                   Continued in the next column.

Babies have very plastic brain maps because they are in the early stages of filling in knowledge, skills, and beliefs. They learn quickly. Once a person has matured, it becomes harder to learn an entirely new language, skill, or change beliefs. The map has been written, and something has to be encroached on to allow for the new information. Think of trying to pour water in a full glass. If you continue to pour, some of the new water will find space and push out the some of the old water.

The concept of plasticity goes back to 1763 when Jean Jacques Roussear, a Swiss philosopher, wrote about it in a book on child development. The idea was not recognized by most scholars or scientist for over two centuries. More recent discoveries have allowed the concept of plasticity to be more accepted. Books like
Mindsight: The New Science of Personal Transformation by Daniel J. Seigel M.D., describe experiments and case studies where major changes happened in people’s lives when they changed beliefs or developed new habits. Even a 92-year-old man was able to create a more balanced life by focusing on activities that expanded his ability to feel emotions. Seigel states, “Neuroplasticity is possible throughout the lifespan, not just in childhood. Besides focusing attention, other factors that enhance neuroplasticity include aerobic exercise, novelty, and emotional arousal.”

How might this ability to change become a negative factor? It can happen if we get caught in a spiral of depression, dwell on a traumatic incident that happened in our life or are exposed to too much negativity or violent energy. The world, the news, and our communities are full of negativity, but the opposite is true as well. We can feed the weeds, or we can tend to the flowers and vegetables we plant. When we feed the weeds, they will overtake the areas that bring us peace and happiness. We have a choice, but we must be conscious of which areas we want to expand and shift our focus when necessary. If you want to have a better life, tend to your brain map like it is a garden. Remove the weeds and replace them with more positive thoughts. Spend time affirming, visualizing, staying aware, meditating, or whatever it takes to expand the areas that bring more joy into your life. Your brain map is your garden, and you are the gardener.

Sources: Dispenza, D.C., Evolve Your Brain, health Communications, Inc., 2007.
Doidge M.D., Norman, The Brain that Changes Itself, Penguin Books, 2007.
Siegel, M.D., Daniel J., Mindsight: The New Science of Personal Transformation, Bantam Books, 2010.

     NOVEMBER 22, 2022



For years, when December 31st came around, I sat down to create a list of resolutions. As I became more familiar with the Law of Attraction and other spiritual teachings, I switched to creating a list of goals. When I would review the list at the end of the year, some, thankfully, had never happened, some I had completed or was in the process of completing, and some went on the list for the next year with the ‘I should’ feeling attached. Somehow this activity was never met with enthusiasm. The list generally would get shoved in a notebook until the end of the year rolled around again.

About a year ago, I found a paper I had written called “The Perfect Day”. It was twenty years old. Upon reading it, I discovered that about half of the story had become a part of my life. The thing that surprised me was that the other half expressed how I still wanted my life to be.

This revelation led me to ask, “What if I journaled a complete year from the perspective of one year in the future?” The idea was the spark that created my journal forward method. It is similar to the perfect day activity with a new twist. I decided to read it every day or two. In the process of rereading it, some desires grew stronger, some seemed unattainable in a year, and some became dreaded outcomes. The ‘what if this came true?’ thought about each began to plague me. Do I really want to live this way? Would I be happy and content if everything in this Future Journal happened? Would I feel too busy, too methodical, too scattered, too whatever? Finally, I said, “Stop! Is this the life I want?”

In the following days, I began to jot notes in the margins, cross out sections and add new desires. Every two months or so, I updated the journal pages to include the changes. As the year progressed, I threw out some items completely and replaced them with a new plan. Each rewrite felt closer to the life I wanted. My gauge was how each section felt in my body when I read it. Some were warm fuzzies, some were cold pricklies. An example of one I changed is, “I bought a building and opened a bookstore this year.” My reaction to this over time was, “No, that feels too confining at this time in my life.” I scratched it out and replaced it with the following, “I started an online magazine.” That one made me feel excited.

                   Continued in the next column.

This method of Journaling Forward incorporates visualization, affirmations, acknowledging body reactions and feeling, and looking at how the pieces of your life fit together. Also, when writing your future situation, you need to take into consideration how much time each part takes to be successful. Maybe you need only the first few steps of a project to happen this year. Otherwise, there would not be time to pursue your other desires.

Years ago, when I taught Reality Shifting, I always drew attention to conflicting goals. A person cannot lead a carefree lifestyle and raise a large family or be a corporate manager and live anywhere you want, though this is a bit more possible now with Zoom. The concept is to not set yourself up for failure by being pulled it two opposing directions. Make sure the parts of your journal fit together cohesively.

If you want to try Journaling Forward, you may start any time of the year, just write it as though it is one year later. I found this method to be a useful process in understanding what is important in my life and pursuing it. See the next column for a list of areas to consider.

Your perfect future year can be a stretch of the imagination to help move yourself out of limiting thoughts or a realistic plan you want to accomplish. The important element is to pay attention to your reactions and feelings when you read the journal day after day. I suggest only doing an upgrade every two months. This way you have viewed your entries from several different moods and are not overreacting to some event. I hope you have as much fun and success in your journaling as I have.

Here are areas to consider as you create your future year:
     Career: work, accomplishments, goals, learning, expanding, etc.
     Education/Learning: hobbies, classes, studies, workshops, lessons, certifications, etc.
     Health: mental, physical, emotional, eating habits, weight, exercise, etc.
     Leisure/Entertainment: events, travel, hobbies, clubs, friends, etc.
     Relationships: partner or spouse, family, friends, co-workers, pets, etc.
     Style: dress, living conditions, home, community, automobile, etc.
     Spirituality: associations, organizations, involvement, practices, etc.


Cecilia Ray, MA is the owner and publisher of A Lighter View. She also owns Gems of Gaia, the parent company of World of Gaia, an online retail business specializing in rocks and books.  

Cecilia holds a Master's in Education and has taught in the public schools and the personal development field. She founded and owned Vision Quest Educational Center and Bookstore in Everett from 1995 to 2005. She and her husband opened World of Gaia, a retail gift and rock store, in Oroville in 2011. In 2019, after her husband passed, she closed the storefront and maintained the online division.

 Her background includes a variety of trainings and business ownerships.  She is now working with writers and businesses to serve the creative, spiritual and holistic community with this magazine. 

The website address is: https://alighterview.com and the email address is Magazine@aLighterView.com