In today’s episode of “Healing From Within” Host Sheryl Glick welcomes Ester Nicholson author of “Soul Recovery- 12 Keys to Healing Addiction.” This book is a much needed guide for understanding any addiction: namely the fear and pain of separation from your divine nature and life course. Soul Recovery is an inspired route that can be taken to sobriety and wholeness, marrying the traditional 12 Step program to a spiritual path imbued with metaphysical principles and practices. The process that has guided thousands to their own recovery and highest potential offers a true awareness of self-divinity overcoming the sense of powerlessness and leading one to their own personal sense of power and renewal. Through her 12 Keys of Soul Recovery each of which relate to the ideas of the 12 Step Programs of Alcoholics Anonymous and other recovery programs, Ester reveals insights that are designed to heal your mind and life. Following her commitment to becoming a vital loving and healthy individual, Nicholson emerged and thrived as a celebrated vocalist for Rod Stewart, Bette Midler, Faith Hill, Beyonce’ and Barbra Streisand, appearing at Madison Square Garden and on Good Morning America, Oprah and Ellen.
Ester’s story is the story of far too many of our younger population where the stresses of survival, materialism and lack of a true awareness of our energetic nature causes neglect in the home making Ester a victim of emotional and domestic abuse. Ester Nicholson gave birth to a daughter in her middle teens and was shortly thereafter introduced to snorting, then smoking cocaine. Lost in years of addiction, she neglected her child, indulged in destructive relationships, became obsessive about men, angry at the world, heaped self-abuse on herself and unable to provide for her child finally surrendered custody of her child.
Over time and with wise sponsors and teachers around her, Ester began her journey to recovery. Even so Ester was in a fragile state and always in danger of slipping back into old familiar patterns. On a recommendation of a friend she attended the Agape International Spiritual Center where inspired by the message of her teachers, she attended services, took classes and was guided by Michael Bernard Beckwith one of the founders of the center. Mr Beckwith’s wife Rickie Byars Beckwith was the musical director of the foundation and before long recognized the innate powerful voice of Ester rising above the voices of the congregation leading Ester eventually to a stellar professional vocal career.
A beautiful comment attesting to the beauty of her voice comes from Rod Stewart, Grammy Award Winner and member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame: “Having been a professional singer for the better part of my adult life, with a fair amount of success, I think I know when I hear an original voice. Ester Nicholson has all the essential qualities of greatness: a unique tone, wonderful phrasing, emotional flexibility and passion. In a nutshell, the girl’s got soul.”
And soul and spirit are what it took to capture the power and promise of forgiveness for herself and those in her community. Ester’s perceived or accurate view of her childhood experiences reflected a lack of knowingness by those around her to foster a sensitive child’s understanding of herself and the world. Of course the damage was tremendous and the capacity to hurt herself and her own daughter are reflected in this quote from the book….”I’ve done it again..When all the drugs were gone, the realization of spending my last dime dawned on me… My frightened little daughter and I left the drug dealers house, walking down the street at 4 a.m. The shame came pouring out of me, and I cried hysterically, “Mommy will never do it again, baby. I’m so sorry.” But even her seven-year old knew better…
Sheryl believes all true talent is downloaded by inspiration and guidance from our interconnected to the Universal Source of the creative life force. Following this statement, Ester’s book uses concepts straight out of metaphysics and the way Ester defines metaphysics: Metaphysics relates to the philosophical study of the nature of being…how our thoughts interact with the experiences we have in life. It deals with the realm of invisible reality within the confines and limitations of our five senses. It is also the study of “cause and effect,” and how that mechanism works in our lives.”
Furthermore Ester explains… “Metaphysics teaches that the quality of your life and the experiences you have are a direct result of your beliefs about life and your relationship with yourself. In a practical sense the external conditions of your life hold up a mirror so you can see the dominant thoughts and beliefs that you hold in your awareness.” Unfortunately most people don’t realize that their beliefs or those given to them in childhood are the foundation of their behavior and reality often creating most of the damaging experiences they must overcome. “Soul Recovery” as such is based on the fact that the power greater than our physical life is actually our true self our soul or internal energetic essence and through this recognition you can shift or heal thoughts that limit your true purposes for a creative and joyful life experience.
Ester reveals a tool for developing spirituality and a connection to Universal Source or God using Several Keys for personal discovery.
1 Setting Intentions..offers 2 main purposes..to realize a Universal Presence that is everywhere and that we are One with and to be aware when our beliefs may be blocking us to the bigger picture of who we are and what life is about
2 Contemplation..a deeper realization of your Wholeness. Old ideas will have to be discarded
3 Journaling.. Feelings and questions may be recorded. Visible form from often abstract ideas
4 Affirmations..Positive declarations designed to transform your thinking
5 Action Steps… New Behaviors in alignment with the new principles you have contemplated and journaled
6 Meditative Quotes…Usually from people who have a profound commitment to spiritual practice
Ester says as the daughter of a Baptist Minister she grew up thinking of God as The all of God including all-power(omnipotence)…all-presence(omnipresence) and all-knowingness(omniscience) God has his eye on everyone in the Universe at all times so you’d better be good or even perfect…and this view scared Ester to death as it might any child. Ester later embraced a metaphysical view of God suggesting the indescribable infinite aspects and the Wholeness or Oneness and there is no opposite or otherness…There is only one God or love. Since God in its divine nature is eternal life and this essence is encoded into the entirety of all things, you and I , we are One with God and Disease and Human Tragedy are results of our own thinking and Illusions affecting our experience, the people around us, and the world around us.
Ester further suggests that when there is addictive behavior it is not limited to drugs but will find it’s way into relationships with men or food or seeking approval or addiction to the negative mental chatter in our head.
Sheryl concludes that these ideas are indeed the result of fear, and patterns began in childhood, and a separation from self-love, All wounded children and that is most of us are dependent on adults who often seek approval from others and the outside world and children merely emulate the skills and behaviors of the adult population.
Every spiritual practice suggests the need to go within and to rediscover your own innate soul wisdom and life path, ultimately restoring you to your natural state of sanity or right perspective, which is your original state of harmony, peace, balance, and love. Letting go of the hypnotic belief systems and socialization patterns of our culture to remember we are an expression of a Loving God and not merely an identification with the physical or purely material world is the way to freedom health and your best hopes.
Sheryl reminds us that “Spirituality is actually the self-investigation and self-mastery of our emotions and physical life, in concert with our relationship to Universal Energy, the Oneness of Being. and the remembrance of our spiritual gifts to become Conscious Creators or Artists creating our own Reality.
One of the quotes that Ester gave in “Soul Recovery” was by Wally Amos and went like this…”It is vital to be growing through your life rather than going through your life. The object is not to change other people or situations, it’s to do the inner work they stimulate.”
On that note Sheryl and Ester hope you will rediscover yourself and your divine potential and possibilities for living from within your own heart: always knowing you are the divine expression of Universal life force and love and no one can take away this power of creation. Do the work, moving out of the past and any confining addiction or behavior, and realize life is an amazing gift and you are an amazing spark of beauty, truth and love.