Recently I came across two very different empaths.

EMPATH #1, "Fran" had me read her aura, and it was a delight. Besides being well trained as a healer, she clearly had strong skills as an empath.

Her empath circuits were strong and wonderfully unencumbered by other people's stuff. Moreover, Fran's aura showed clearly that she had learned how to keep her empath gifts OFF most of the time, turning them on only when desired and doing this in ways that kept her safe.

EMPATH #2, Freya, gives empaths advice at her blog. I applaud her intent to help people get in control of their abilities. "It's not always an easy process, but it is an achievable one, provided you make the effort."

Then Freya goes on to advise empaths to project their emotions outward in order to change other people:

"Feel free to use [your emotions] to help others heal on an emotional level. If they're angry, send them love. If they're panicked, send them love. If they're scared, send them love. I know that sounds corny, but that's what you're doing when you project calming energy for the sake of helping someone.

"People who are angry or panicked are imbalanced (for that moment, at least) and your projection of the opposite emotion can really help to stabilize them. You needn't do anything special, simple feel the emotion in your heart chakra and will it out of your body and over to them -- you do this without thinking all day long, so don't worry; you can do it whenever you set your mind to it."

"EMPATH" DOES NOT MEAN "EMOTIONAL"

I do not (NOT!!!) advocate following this advice. But I do find it well worth discussing here because it brings up some important ideas for empaths who wish to become skilled empaths, not merely talented empaths.

Must you be an empath in order to be able to send your emotions out strongly toward other people? Of course not.

Everyone can project emotions... or try to coerce other people "for their own good." By comparsion, only 1 in 20 people was born as an empath.

Freya is not the only writer in the field of empath empowerment who confuses being emotionally intense with being an empath. Karla McLaren has published a CD that has influenced a lot of empaths: "Becoming an Empath."

There she defines being an empath in purely emotional terms. In fact, one of her recommendations is that every empath should find support from others because, being an empath, you'll need it.

Right! You'll need support if you follow this method because you won't, alas, develop skill as an empath.

Karla is an appealing writer who can offer help of the misery-loves-company variety.

Years after "Becoming an Empath," she has publicly renounced her work, but the publisher still sells her CD. Like Elvis still being in the building, right?

As an alert empath, straight from the title "Becoming an Empath," you may recognize a problem. A person can't "become" an empath. Yes, you can learn Emotional Intelligence or manners or tweak your social boundaries. But either you are born as an empath or else you're not.

If you are born as an empath, it shows in your aura right from babyhood (actually, right from the time you are in the womb). Any skilled aura reader can find it, along with other gifts of your soul.

But you qualify as an empath if you have ANY gift to directly experience what it is like to be someone else. Your gift could be physical, intellectual, spiritual, environmental, plant, animal, crystal, mechanical, even molecular, not necessarily emotional at all.

WHAT BEING AN EMPATH DOES NOT MEAN

Emotional problems. Anyone can have them. Sometimes they're short-term problems and sometimes long-term. But having emotional problems does not mean a person is an empath.

Many of the conversations you'll find online, googling on "empath," concern either emotional problems or teenage angst.

Sometimes born empaths write about how they suffer or, as Freya correctly reports, they feel it is is "a curse" to be an empath.

How can you tell if you are an empath or, to be blunt, you're really dealing with emotional problems instead? I'd recommend that you get a copy of "Empowered by Empathy" and find out if you can relate to the gifts and experiences described there, right from the first page where I write about being "Malled."

If the techniques that follow in that book help you, there's a clue that many of your long-term problems have not been a curse at all! An empath doesn't have a disability but a talent. Very likely your past suffering has been due to your being merely a talented empath, but not yet a skilled empath.

If the techniques help you a bit, but you're still suffering, you might benefit from emotional and spiritual healing. This will supplement your growing skills as an empath. Some options that I offer for healing are in the BIO section here, but they're hardly the only resources around. Your job is to decide what speaks to your needs and follow up accordingly.

PLEASE DO NOT ADD TO THIS PROBLEM

Back at Freya's projection technique, I'm concerned that she's furthering the popular misunderstanding that confuses being an empath with having emotional problems. (Wouldn't anyone who is troubled prefer to tell herself or himself, "This is happening because I am talented as an empath"?)

But what really distressed me -- enough for me to write this article -- is the advice that Freya advocates about pushing your emotions on others for their own good.

There is a technical name for what she advocates. It is not "empath." It is "psychic coercion" or even "psychic attack."
"But all I'm doing is sending out love to calm people and fix their problems."

Alas, projecting ANY emotion, wish, thought of yours into another person breaks a spiritual law.

Love can be contagious. Real love, however, cannot be forced or inflicted upon others.

You may know that, besides training empaths, I facilitate sessions of emotional and spiritual healing. Just last week I did a session for an extremely well-trained and talented energy worker. Her training had not included knowledge of psychic coercion and we removed, literally, truckloads of it from her aura.

Never, ever presume to inflict your values or choices to over-ride another person's free will. And certainly, don't use the word "empath" to justify psychic coercion.

READY FOR A LAUGH?

One very talented empath, Brenda, has had a number of sessions with me. Partly, she has gone for coaching to become a skilled empath and partly Brenda has asked me to help her cut a number of (rather vile) cords of attachment.

One of these was to a stalker, "Buddy." Currently in jail, Buddy had taken a shine to Brenda and thought of her has the love of his life.

Buddy was so crazy, he even requested a conjugal visit. Imagine Brenda picking up the phone and being asked if she was ready to schedule a love-in with a man she had never even dated. Well, this really happened.

Brenda declined. Brenda objected. The prison official who called to arrange this love tryst was, evidently, a person of great -- if misplaced -- compassion. Disappointed that Brenda refused to come, she said:

"Buddy wanted me to tell you, he just wants to hold you and love you like a puppy."

Love -- sometimes it is the answer. Sometimes, frankly, it's not.

Author's Bio: 

Rose Rosetree is the founder of Energy Spirituality, offering aura readings that include Cutting Cords of Attachment , Aura Transformation, and Regression Therapy .

If you're interested in reading faces, check out her Face Readings, another form of spiritual reading.

She's an Expert on Aura here at self-growth.com.

Prefer to study directly? Rose teaches workshops internationally on doing intuitive reading. (Most client sessions are via telephone, with details at her website.

Rosetree is also known for her how-to books:

* “Read People Deeper: Body Language + Face Reading + Auras” , the first book to combine all three different forms of deeper perception,

* “AURA Reading Through All Your Senses” , to help you get skills at reading energy fields.

*"Cut CORDS of Attachment: Heal Yourself and Others with Energy Spirituality" , a healing how-to,

*"Empowered by EMPATHY”with leading-edge techniques that Rose teaches internationally,

*“The Power of FACE Reading”, and

*“ Let Today Be a HOLIDAY.”

One title has become a bestseller in Germany; in America, two have been selections of One Spirit Book Club. If you want to learn to do spiritual reading and also empower yourself in everyday life, you're going to enjoy Rose's work.

Many foreign editions of her books have been published, with information available here

With over 140,000 copies sold, Rosetree's books help readers to discover emotional and spiritual healing, better relationships, self-awareness and inspiration. Order Rose's books, published through Women's Intuition Worldwide, or call toll-free 800-345-6665.

At Rose Rosetree's website, you’ll also find free articles, FAQs, and practical ways to use Deeper Perception to make life better. Sign up for "Read Life Deeper," her free monthly zine with face and aura readings of people in the news, at www.rose-rosetree.com. Rosetree's blog is called "Deeper Perception Made Practical." You are invited to join this lively, interactive community.

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