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Gifts of the Spirit

Once you have examined your beliefs and opened yourself to new possibilities, and even briefly touched the unified field and tasted Oneness, certain abilities may begin to manifest. These expanded faculties have been termed gifts of the spirit, to use the language of religion, or psychic abilities as they are called in the secular world. They are sometimes a testament to, and manifestation of, Source working in and through you. These gifts or skills are typically divided into three categories: teaching gifts, sign gifts, and revelatory gifts.

Teaching gifts are inspiring moments when someone is able to give understanding to another person or group on a specific point of difficulty or a challenge. It’s as though the words are an actual infusion of light and clarity, delivered at exactly the right moment for maximum effect. We saw the beauty of this gift when Martin Luther King, Jr., gave his “I Have a Dream” speech. Delivered from the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, King’s passionate words demanding racial justice and equality electrified America.

His magnetism, sincerity, and emotion—all of which were clearly visible in his body and voice—infused listeners with a deeper recognition of the political and racial situation that was facing the country at that time. More than 40 years later, his words still ring with beauty and truth, awakening us to a vision of what peace could actually mean.

Sign gifts include the gifts of faith, healing, and miracles. They have the power to bring even the most skeptical individuals to their knees.

Finally, we have revelatory gifts, which include prophecy, the ability to sense beyond our reality, and speaking in (and interpreting) tongues. Prophecy here means when a person suddenly communicates with lucidity and authority, where the words are clearly coming from a source outside of him or her. Today, this would be termed discernment in the religious arena (not to be confused with the discernment of examining our beliefs), or channeling in the popular vernacular. We call abilities to sense be- yond the norm paranormal, and that umbrella term includes feel- ing (clairsentience); seeing (clairvoyance); hearing (clairaudience); and touching, tasting, and smelling beyond the usual limits of those senses.

Speaking in tongues involves a spontaneous outpouring of seemingly unrelated sounds that has the energetic effect of connecting the communicator to Source. Often, one person will speak and another, likewise tapped into Spirit, will interpret the tongues. Many years ago, I visited dozens of random churches where I happily participated in this activity. “Tongues” can also be practiced alone as a very intimate form of prayer, often accompanied by a deep sense of joy and communion—it was said to be a favorite of Agnes Sanford. It’s my sense that some indigenous people, with the help of dancing and drums, also speak in tongues when they are connecting to Spirit.

These gifts are always given for the benefit of the community, and not to boost an individual’s ego. Once limited to ascetics and monks, today the gifts are available to all: students, housewives, working people—all manner of regular folks living otherwise ordinary lives, including you!

Copyright notice: Excerpt from pages 67-68 of Be Your Own Shaman by Deborah King, published by Hay House Books.

Deborah King