The world is in a precarious place. From the crashing economy, to supercharged euphoria in the political landscape, from war and chaos in the Middle East, to China poisoning its children's’ milk supply, from increased methamphetamine use to the import of child slavery into the United States--the news headlines bring new challenges to our doorstep every day.

Are we playing out the Book of Revelation, as some Christians believe? Does this justify the Intifada, as extremist Moslems defend? Meanwhile, in metaphysical and New Age spiritual circles, people look to the Mayan prophecies for an end of the world as we know it. A new book by talk radio host Stephen Martin called The Truth: What You Must Know Before December 21, 2012 captures the essence of that dialogue. And a new movie, 2012, takes those prophecies to a whole new level of doom, feeding the mass consciousness.

What are these trends keying into? Let’s consider another perspective.

Our souls travel to retreats of higher learning on the etheric plane at night while our bodies sleep. There, we interface with our higher self, with the higher self of others, and with angels and ascended beings. There are 14 etheric cities above the earth, as well as a number of etheric retreats in key locations and sacred wilderness areas, including the Grand Teton mountain in Wyoming, and Mount Kanchenjunga in India near Darjeeling. (You can explore specific retreats at www.ethericretreats.com.)

The etheric plane is a higher vibrational frequency of the physical plane. All who remember their experiences there, including clairvoyants and people who have had near-death experiences, testify to the very “physical” nature of this plane. When our conscious mind awakens to the time spent in the etheric plane, the memory is so vivid that it is daily life that becomes the “dream.”

In the etheric plane, souls interact with good will and respect. Everyone honors everyone else’s connection to Source. Then, we return to our bodies in the morning, remembering only fragments or sometimes nothing at all, but we still feel refreshed.

In the retreats, we are taught that earth is about to enter an Aquarian Golden Age where people will tie into their divine source once again, as they did in golden ages past. The golden age of Aquarius has been prophesied as an age of peace, prosperity and brotherhood where science, art and spirituality flourish for altruistic purposes. This golden age is already manifesting in the etheric retreats, and our souls imbibe of that vibration at night. Then we are intended to anchor the vibration in our less than perfect outer experience through right thought, right feeling and right action.

The discrepancy between the culture of the etheric octave and the prevailing culture of the outer world is so great that it creates an energetic wobble. As etheric energy continues to press in and merge with the outer world, the juxtaposition of energies creates a threshing out of our individual and collective experience.

The more the etheric plane comes into congruency with our world, the more there is a flushing out of darkness. As the light increases, what must be resolved erupts to the surface and also manifests within the nature kingdom as cataclysm.

This is the time of the harvest, of the sifting of the tares and the wheat, when the dross comes to the surface to be skimmed. It is both a time of malaise and unparalleled opportunity. Each disruptive bump up in vibration brings the consciousness of the “New Jerusalem” down one more notch, and anchors the City Foursquare.

One way to think about what is going on is to visualize a space shuttle ready for take off. The fire under the rocket creates enormous pressure. As the pressure and fire continues to build in preparation for lift-off, the rocket shakes and wobbles. Then, just before the rocket launches into the air, the metal platforms that were holding the rocket into place fly off.

As the etheric blueprint continues to press in, we experience the agitation, commotion and seeming disharmony of our individual and collective “rocket launch.” When the wobble becomes almost unbearable, when the crutches we were leaning on and the security of our cherished beliefs begin to fly off, we feel bereft. Our only way is up, attuning to the presence of God steering us from within and above, until we reach the peace and calm of interstellar orbit.

Aquarius in an age of love. These necessary shifts are shifts of love. Real love is not easy. It exacts everything from us. Like the poet Kahlil Gibran described, love ascends to our highest height and caresses our tenderest branches that quiver in the sun. Love also descends to our roots to shake them in their clinging to the earth. Love threshes us like sheaths of corn to make us naked, and sifts us to free us from our husks. Love grinds us to whiteness, kneads you until we are pliant and then assigns us to the sacred fire so that we might become sacred bread for God's sacred feast.

We are moving into unchartered waters towards 2012 and beyond. As we pioneer the future, as the intensity continues to increase and humanity faces the potential of unprecedented upheaval, we must become islands of sanctuary unto the multitude. We must keep our heads and make sense of the accelerating change.

To be an island of sanctuary unto the multitudes means to embody the consciousness of the etheric plane. The etheric retreats and cities are islands of sanctuary where our souls receive solace and teaching. We return charged with light, ready to face another day of descending karma and opportunity. We hold the vibration of highest good in our interactions with others and pray for the best possible outcome.

Author's Bio: 

Therese Emmnauel Grey is the author of Miracles, Masters and Mirth: Adventures in Spirituality and Self-Awareness, and the Legend of the Ancient of Days. She also co-authored two self-improvement books, Why We Do What We Do and The Psychology of Success. Therese hosts an interview program on blogtalkradio called Antahkarana as well as a mantra workshop called Violet Flame Miracles. She regularly offers workshops and seminars on self-improvement and the purpose of life, and is a mother of four young children.