by Michele Anderson
Boulder, Colo.-- Our culture has shackled itself by defining faith as blind, ignorant belief. Most of us recognize unquestioning belief to be foolish. Yet, on a deep level, we all crave faith in our lives and the transformation it brings. What is faith really? How do we cultivate it in balance with the rest of our lives?
Kat Lindgren was raised in an empathic, psychically gifted household. She is of Native American (three-quarters Cherokee and Choctaw) as well as some European descent.
In 1971, she began to seriously study metaphysics and became an ordained minister in 1973. She received her Nursing Degree in 1984 and Polarity Certification in 1992. For 3 1/2 years, she worked with the mentally ill and developmentally disabled, both children and adults.
Currently, Lindgren is working full time as a spiritual counselor and healer. She resides in Colorado.
Michele Anderson talks with Lindren about our faith and fears, and what they mean to us today. Lindgren speaks with a keen intelligence and warm insight.
NEW VISION: What was your household like as you were growing up?
LINDGREN: My mother and my father were psychic as well as my sister, my aunt on my mother's side and my mother's father. Also my great aunt on my father's side was a healer.
NEW VISION: Was your family open about it? Did they encourage it?
LINDGREN: It was never discouraged, it was never called anything. It was just a way of operating at home. I always assumed growing up that all households were the same way and that everybody did this--it was normal.
NEW VISION: When did you first notice your empathic talent?
LINDGREN: I don't even know if I would have even called it that. I just figured it was a normal way of being. The first evidence was that I used to translate for my younger sister all the time. She wouldn't speak in English. She had her own language. I would translate for her to my parents, primarily my mother about what it was she wanted or she needed. That was when I was 3 years old. She was about 1.
NEW VISION: How did your work with the mentally ill influence your development as a psychic?
LINDGREN: I was pretty well-developed psychically before I even went into that environment. I was able to use my ability to feel, see and to understand certain situations with clients and to communicate with them in a non-threatening way. They probably sensed that about me also.
It was very good training in how to protect myself psychically when dealing with people who have a lot of energy. The mentally ill have a lot of psychic energy that is not channeled. It spikes out there the way children sometimes do.
In that environment, you learn to be creative using your talents. You learn to call it something else because it's safer. I would never have said, "I'm using my psychic ability to relate here." You just don't do that. I always knew when something was going to happen. I knew if I needed to talk to somebody and how I needed to talk to that person to prevent a horrible exchange.
NEW VISION: Your psychic abilities helped you handle situations that could get out of hand?
LINDGREN: I realized that I was using that ability much more. I was much more aware of it. Throughout my life, I've used it in situations and circumstances. It's kept me alive. I've found that it has been a form of protection for me to be able to read my environment and the people in my environment.
I learned how to translate the information that I was receiving into a clear, tangible format that traditional medicine would understand. I learned to keep grounded. We live in the real world and we need to be grounded individuals. By accessing this information, it doesn't mean go out in left field and live out there. We can actually use everything that is available to us in this realm to round us out as a whole person and allow us to live our lives in a constructive way. We can use all our tools.
NEW VISION: How would you describe traditional psychology's approach to the tool of intuition?
LINDGREN: The traditional psychology field does not recognize the intuition in its training program or doesn't address it. In its quest to become a legitimate science, it has divorced itself from all of these capabilities and tools that we have to use in our world.
There is a stigma to having this gift and this discourages people who work in these fields who have explored their own talents and used them. It discourages them from being able to call it what it is, so we learn to call it something else. We become very adept and creative and are considered extremely intelligent that we're able to perceive the circumstances in this field correctly and document them accordingly.
What we are not able to do is to say, "I have psychic ability and that's why I am picking up this information. That's a tool I am using to pick up this information. It's not just a linear thought process. I am using all of my tools to pick up this information."
I am using another skill in conjunction to all the other skills that have been developed. There is not that separation. The world will be better when people don't have to hide what they are really doing. They don't have to divorce those parts of themselves and put them in these clever little boxes in order to be accepted in traditional fields anymore. There are more doctors coming forward and letting people know that they have these gifts and they're using it in their field of practice. Until this is more recognized and considered a legitimate practice, it will always have a stigma attached to it. Also, people are afraid to use their abilities especially if they have any memory of persecution in relationship to using these talents.
NEW VISION: How has faith transformed your life and your practice?
LINDGREN: Faith has protected me and guided me throughout my life; it has been the great provider in times of trouble. It's kept me alive, it's kept me safe. It may not have kept me out of danger, but it's definitely snatched me from the jaws of death in my life. It's kept me around for certain reasons.
That is different than belief. We grow up thinking belief and faith are the same. Well they are not. Belief is a structure, a system that we use to define our spiritual self. Faith, on the other hand, is that knowing without tangibility, a connectedness to spirit itself. It is our connection to God. It cannot be defined in any other terms. Faith resists structure and it resists being put in a box or a classification. It is our one-on-one connectedness to each other, to spirit, to the whole, to the collective consciousness. Faith is what pulls us through. It is not belief in outside forces, it is that spark within ourselves that lives inside, an inner knowing that we will be okay. Spirit says, "We will be okay." We hear this, we're actually connected to that voice. It speaks to us and it tells us what we need to hear.
NEW VISION: In the past, you've said, "Fear is the absence of faith." What does that mean exactly?
LINDGREN: With faith we have no fear. We have no fear because there is that knowing that we're going to be okay. Fear can't live there. Fear is that creation based on beliefs that things are not going to be okay or something is going to harm us. I don't mean in terms of fight or flight. I mean fear has its moment and its place. But, as a society or a people, we don't know when a fear response is appropriate anymore. We are constantly bombarded with information that feeds our fears.
It has developed an energy all of its own. Fear is a great manifestor just as faith is. They are opposites in poles, they exist in total polarity to each other. One is a dark place, and the other is a place of total light. Fear can be totally absorbing, it chokes out faith.
The only way we can actually banish that darkness, push back that cloud or that shadow to see what is happening in your world is stop long enough to really connect to that part of spirit. Because you can't see faith when you are coming from a place of fear. You become blinded by fear and it becomes an all-driving force.
NEW VISION: You're saying we've become accustomed to using it all the time rather than when it's needed to steer us away from danger or as a warning?
LINDGREN: Everything is danger now instead of the way it served our ancestors in times of need, where we could turn it on and we could turn it off. We had that down time and we were able to connect to spirit. We were more connected to spirit as a primitive people because we did have that higher belief in our spirits, in our souls, a connection to the whole, to each other, and to nature. We were connected to all things and we did not severe ourselves from that. By believing the illusion of separation, we have cut off our connection to each other, to nature, and to God energy. We feel alone and that just propagates more fear. Once again, it causes us to disconnect some more and shield ourselves even more. It becomes an all-encompassing energy force.
To break that wall down and start rekindling that little seed inside ourselves, we must recognize that we are part of a whole. Our spirituality is faith-driven.
NEW VISION: I've heard you say that we live in a fear-based culture. Please expand on that.
LINDGREN: We are inundated with information. Most of it feeds our disconnectedness: our fears of isolation, of being small, of being vulnerable, of being victims. We are hit with this daily in the news and advertisements because the best way to sell is to feed on somebody's primal fears. Our fear acts as a way of separating us further from truth, faith, nature, each other and from spirit itself.
Every person walking in this world has spirit walking inside of them and they just haven't looked. Some people are exploring and searching for ways to nurture this little seed and help it grow.
But basically, we have pulled are ourselves away from our connection to spirit. All people need to reintegrate in their lives. If you go back far enough in any person's culture, you will find that they were very connected to spirit and to the world that they lived in.
We are physical beings and we live in a physical world. We need to embrace living in this physical world or we wouldn't be here. We would be somewhere else, we would be doing something else. But many belief systems explore the possibility of not being here, of being somewhere else, of transcending. Well, we are here and we're here to gather information and to have this experience. We're here to be connected with each other and with spirit. We're here to live a tangible life. I believe that in our ability or desire to escape this world we live in, we look outside ourselves for faith, but it doesn't live there. That's belief. Faith is internal.
NEW VISION: How can we know when we're in fear versus when we're in faith? What would help us to know the difference between the two, so we can begin to move closer to faith?
LINDGREN: Ask yourself is this real, am I in danger? Am I in physical danger right now? If I am not, what is this based on? Is this based on a vague feeling of what may happen? Or is it an actual danger that I am in? If I'm in actual danger, then that is true fear and I need to deal with that. If it is this vague fear of what will happen, something may happen, then we're dealing with programming. Faith is peaceful, an understanding that we are truly okay. It's an absence of driving fear that if we don't react a horrible thing is going to happen to us. Consequence, consequence, consequence. It is a knowledge that we have done what we need to do and we're okay.
NEW VISION: Then on an energetic level, can fear drain and faith energize?
LINDGREN: Fear is definitely draining. It zaps energy. It pulls your attention away from your spiritual development into survival mode. In survival mode, we have no energy left to develop ourselves on a spiritual level. If your basic needs aren't being met, you're not going anywhere else. We've been programmed in our culture to function in this mode all the time. It's very hard for people to seek spiritual development when they've got the survival threat going on constantly. It is a perception problem with us. We have created it, we have manifested it. We have put it up in neighborhoods and environments where it is so strong that it is actually self-fulfilling in its prophecy of doom. It perpetuates itself.
*** Part 2 ***
NEW VISION: How can we use the transforming power of faith to change that environment, to move from the survival mode?
LINDGREN: That is much easier said than done. Because it has been a learned process, a learned disconnection over such a period of time over many generations of people from many spiritual groups. They have separated themselves from faith or been separated due to circumstances since the existence of mankind on this planet. Developing respect for spiritual development and diversity is a good first step.
Spiritual development is very individual. What is true for one person may not be true for another. It's what rings true in a person's heart. We all have our own path that we walk in this life time. We gather the information that we need to live our lives fully as well as to raise this world to a better place. We cannot put ourselves in a mold and we cannot pump out all of these people who think alike, feel alike, are alike because we're not. There is too much diversity here. Each person is unique and they need to be appreciated for that uniqueness and loved for the gifts that they bring into this world.
NEW VISION: So, you are saying faith is personal?
LINDREN: Faith IS personal. It's how the complex creatures that we are have integrated that little seed in our existence. It defies translation and categorization. When we try to put it in a box, and we try to call it something that it's not, then we get into holy wars.
NEW VISION: Faith acknowledges some kind of outside help, in something or someone. How can we rely on something that isn't always tangible or immediately apparent?
LINDGREN: People do it all the time. They call it religion. There is nothing really tangible about that. We set up icons and all types of other structures to give form to something that is essentially formless. Faith is like a very thin web and it connects us. It is a stream of light, a form of energy, but it connects us with each other and to everything in this world. There is no separation, no disconnection. We seek to disconnect and make life impersonal because it's easier to justify our behavior to our fellow man and to nature itself. It alleviates us from any responsibility to this earth, to this planet we are living on right now.
NEW VISION: How have you see faith and fear operating in the lives of your clients?
LINDGREN: Many people who are confined in institutions have what is called religiosity or they have a belief system that's a very paranoid variation of whatever their spiritual upbringing has been. They have beliefs that they are Christ or worse they have done horrible things to themselves based on whatever their particular belief system is. They have plugged into the fear side of their religion. They have not addressed their spiritual side, it has not been fed.
NEW VISION: When you do psychic readings or polarity therapy how do you get your clients in touch with the faith aspect in their life?
LINDGREN: I usually address their life issues in terms of the power they have in their world. It's a healing process whether we're doing a psychic reading or a polarity session. It is a reminder that they are connected to spirit. This is where information comes from. The information that comes to them is meant for them. It's meant to help them, to heal them. In polarity work, often times, the process is done without them having to go through a lot of conscious processing.
With the psychic work or the spiritual counseling work, there are words that are spoken. It is a translation of energy that comes from spirit that says this is what you need to know. Then, it's up to them to do what they will do with it. There is no investment on my part whether they choose to make a change or not. My responsibility is to give the information and to allow that human being to do what they will with it because that is their learning process. That's where they need to take the responsibility of doing or not doing something, however their life unfolds. Then I step back and say, okay there you have it. This is what I have to give you. Feel blessed. Have a blessing. Do what you need to do.
NEW VISION: You've hinted at some criticism of religious institutions. Since we've always looked for faith in religion, how can religion itself be transformed to fulfill that more?
LINDGREN: Basically, spiritual guidance through whatever forms it has taken over the ages was meant to teach and to guide people, but not to take the place of the connectedness to spirit. We have created these institutions. Too often, they have become the means to the end instead of being a form of guidance or direction for people to connect to spirit. In those cases, religion can become another faction of separation.
To break something down that has over time become an entity of its own--that's a tough one. Christ even posed this question with the churches of his day about how changes needed to happen, how people needed to be served in a different way. People are finding what they're seeking is not being met. They are being told that they have to go through this group, or this person, or this church to connect to spirit itself. On a spiritual and cellular level, they know that's not true.
NEW VISION: How can we find faith or connect with faith as is, just by being?
LINDGREN: People start noticing a change in their lives that their faith's been shaken by a miracle happening in their world. The miracles that happen become so transforming that it renews that little seed that is trying to grow inside of them. They start realizing that they are truly a part of spirit. They no longer feel the separation each time something happens that is totally unexplainable, a miracle as we recall it. It helps renew their faith and allows them to understand that they can be whatever they choose. They can create this reality for themselves. They can transform their world and their lives through the key of faith.
NEW VISION: How do we renew our faith when we undergo a traumatic experience or a tragedy?
LINDGREN: That depends on what our background is and what seeds have been cultivated inside of us. Some people can go through horrible experiences and they still have faith alive and well inside of them. They are able to see the reasons why events are happening in their lives to lead them along a certain path or to help them be who they need to be right now.
Other people are set back by minor events in life and it devastates them. Spiritual development over lifetimes cultivates the understanding that we are being formed and we are gathering information. We are a part of the whole and we don't lose sight of that. Man feels so alone and he grieves so much that he seeks to fill that void by finding other things to fit in the place of where spirit belongs. In actuality, there is no separation, never has been, never was--it's a perception.
Faith is basically a connectedness, an awareness of the spirituality in all things. It is a recognition of beauty and being able to see anywhere that you walk things are beautiful because they are.
NEW VISION: How can we use faith to transform our lives or give us a new outlook?
LINDGREN: Faith is a great creator, as we believe so do we create in our lives. When we embrace the whole and see the beauty in our world, in ourselves and in each other, we notice that our lives becoming more synchronistic. We can call it miracles. We can call whatever we want to call it that works for us. As it becomes a transformative tool, doors open, people come to us that reinforce the path that we are walking. We find more cohesiveness in our lives. We find more beauty in our lives. We find more love in our lives. That causes more of this beautiful transformation. Just as much as fear is a great destroyer, faith is a great creator, a great transformer. It reinforces itself, it feeds itself and creates a more beautiful life. It's not to say that we will not have challenges because challenges produce growth and we need that to be ever-changing, ever-growing beings. However, we are able to deal with the crises in our lives in a smoother manner with less fear, with more confidence. We realize that we are not alone and we don't have that disconnected feeling.
NEW VISION: What can give us faith?
LINDGREN: Faith lives inside of you. Until you see the miracle in your own life, and you see the miracles as they unfold, that is the only thing that reinforces faith. It is a connection to spirit that says okay you live a life of miracles. We are magical beings. We are spiritual beings and we are not separate from each other.
If you would like to contact Kat Lindgren, she can be reached at:
1610 Garfield Ave, #5
Louisville, Colorado 80027
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