This is a brief comment from March 2022. I’ve learned a lot since 2011 when this post was written. A lot of psychic phenomena is just misunderstood subconscious associations and projections onto the outer world.

I won’t say that there aren’t psychic things. The spiritual path doesn’t deny the possible existence of anything.

But I will emphasize to hold this older post lightly and to work more deeply on your self-inquiry to understand your subconscious.

Discovering Unconscious Associations and Feelings

One of the big confusions many people with psychic awareness have is around the idea of spirituality. They confuse the awareness and ability to see and know things psychically with spiritual awareness, and the two can be very different. It’s an important distinction to make because a number of really psychic people just take the tools they’ve been given and start hammering away without really being in integrity with themselves and with others. It leads to problems down the road, which I’ll delineate. But the first thing to understand is that spiritual awareness and psychic awareness are two very different things, and where we bring them together is where we create a powerful combination to help heal the world.

Spiritual Awareness: Integrity With Self and Others

Spiritual awareness at its core is about integrity. It’s about doing the will of the Universe. You don’t run around trying to save the planet. That’s too linear and biased of a view of what’s happening in the world. Instead, you learn to tap into the deeper integrity of the process that’s unfolding, putting aside your ego’s decision to help, hurt, or manipulate the given situations. It’s a profound thing to come into your spiritual awareness and the depth of understanding there because when you do, you see pain and suffering entirely differently. You’re no longer trying to eradicate them on some kind of Holy quest which will likely leave you debilitated and exhausted. Instead, you’re much more surgical. You sense when you need to intervene, act, or speak out in situations. You also sense when it’s time to be quiet, step back, and let things go their course.

This may mean that you’re guided to let some tragedy unfold for someone. As many of you know, sometimes the only reason you acted or made a change was because something really bad happened. Something so painful came and taught you how to let go or to change. If it hadn’t, you’d likely have continued the same cycles of misery without stopping. You’d still be stuck.

Oh That’s Horrible!

It sounds horrible on the page to ever say that you might have “withheld” your help. And that’s not what I’m saying at all. That’s why your spiritual awareness and being exceptionally clear about what feels right and true to take action is so critical. Because imagine in the above scenario that you help someone who in turn becomes a leech on you. They act out the same cycles of pain because they haven’t crashed hard enough to let go. You finally get really upset because this person is draining you all the time and takes your “kindness” for granted. And then you feel bad for being upset at this person that you really want to help. Can you hear all the subtle ego things going on in there? This is still about you making yourself feel good, isn’t it? Your help is coming with a price tag. You’re looking for some kind of gratification from the world that you can make a difference. Well, you can. But only when you’re in integrity with you deeper self and can begin to see the situation clearly.

Coming In With All the Lights Turned On

Some psychics come into this life with all the lights turned on. They’ve got all these different tools and abilities, but they have no integrity or discernment around them. They’re oftentimes not very grounded and can get swept away by situations, energetically disturbed easily, and in general manipulated by both good and bad intentions. The spiritual path isn’t about “good” intentions per se. The higher good that knows no opposite appreciates the fullness of good and evil in this dualistic world, and it understands their roles, when to allow something and when to stop it. You’re not becoming callous to the world. Far from it. You’re very much doing the reverse. It’s a profound place to have to watch someone suffer with compassion until such time as it is okay to reach out and help. Usually, that person has to reach out, but even then, if you are connected with your deeper integrity, you’ll find times when it still isn’t appropriate to help.

All the do-gooders reading this blog post are really upset. The “do-good-all-the-time” mentality is so baked into people’s brains that they can’t see the bigger picture. Try to step back and see the bigger picture. Try and step back and see what you’re really up to. Seriously. Are you really trying to help or do you just want to fulfill some internal need for gratification and self-reassurance that you’re a good person? Here’s a nasty question: If you could go back in time and stop the Holocaust, would you do it if it meant that the awakening happening today would then not happen?

It’s brutal to suggest something like that. It’s even harder to appreciate that sometimes humanity needs its pain and suffering in a big way before it is willing to wake up.

Taking a Big Step Back

So, this is a tough pill to swallow, and I’m not necessarily suggesting any answers. What I’m saying is that developing your spiritual awareness will help you to take appropriate action. That’s the key. We all do the best we can, but for those of you working in the psychic space, I’d encourage you to take a step back from time to time to check in with your deeper integrity. Check in and clear out any issues in you. If you haven’t done this kind of spiritual discipline, I’d encourage you to stop working in the psychic space entirely until you have a practice in place. Your practice keeps you grounded and aware of what is you and what is not you. Working in the psychic realms is a very vulnerable place. You can absorb all kinds of crazy energies if you’re not careful, and it’s easy to get unbalanced, sick, or lose your mind and sense of self. In general, I encourage most people to focus on living in their bodies, but for those of you who feel called to work out in the ether, you have to build a strong practice or run some real risks of getting into energetic trouble.

Spiritual Awareness and Psychic Awareness: Some Other Subtle Differences

Some other differences include the fact that a spiritual awareness doesn’t necessarily mean you have much if any psychic awareness. Some awakened people that I know really don’t have much of a sense of those spaces, and they have a very limited sense of intuition. For me, both are very powerful and present, although I prefer to stay grounded in my body and not get caught up in all the things floating out in energies around me. Psychic awareness is a term that I use very broadly, including intuition and going all the way out into astral projection and psychic warfare. It’s a wild, wild world, and for those of you with tons of abilities on that level, you can feel overwhelmed. Being overwhelmed suggests that you don’t have the spiritual awareness as well as the psychic training to hold what you’ve got. Just take a step back. If there’s a theme here for this blog, it’s take a step back. Get your feet set in something grounded, figure out who you are first, and then move out into that space.

Because there’s all kinds of things that are pretty amazing that you can do with psychic abilities (it really isn’t just about telling the future). But you don’t need to run around proving it to yourself or others, and you certainly don’t need to abuse these gifts or manipulate others through them. That kind of stuff will set up some really nasty whiplash coming back at you, and it certainly shows that you have no spiritual awareness if you’re ever harming or manipulating others. That’s the surest sign that you are out of integrity and are heading towards big trouble. So stop. Take a step back, and reassess what’s really important. And that’s stuff like love. And kindness and compassion. Find that space of integrity and then move back into psychic spaces with a renewed commitment to what is true and real.


I'm a spiritual teacher who helps people find freedom from suffering.


  1. I have never heard this distinction made between spiritual awareness and psychic awareness. This makes so much sense! You explained it so well, especially the link to integrity. This was a unique and highly informative post. Thanks!

  2. Thanks, Galen. Yeah, I felt like it was important to make a distinction. Psychic abilities are like tools. Just because someone has a hammer doesn't mean they know how to use it. The spiritual awareness and practice guides the hammer so it doesn't hurt someone. Thanks for reading. 🙂

  3. Thank you for this super informative and eye opening post. A few years ago I had repressed memories of severe trauma surface, and with that my psychic awareness was blown open. I have fortunately been on a deep healing journey of integrating all my shadows and stuck childhood parts with an amazing therapy called Internal Family Systems. I am attuned and trained as a Reiki Master and have come across so many unethical "healers" in this world. This blog and others you have written on this subject have really opened my eyes to this and helped me understand where they are coming from. We are living in crazy times right now and discernment and integrity are more important than ever. Thank you for highlighting all of this!

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