The Consciousness Compass


Fall is the season of harvest and transformation - and the perfect time to explore self-awareness. Self-awareness is a cornerstone of self-growth. It is guided by unflinching inner honesty, our choice to act honestly or not, and recognition of how our actions are perceived by others. As self-awareness increases, our inner and outer worlds transform.   The fall provides a brilliant example of transformation. Leaves explode into colors reminding us to observe how we see the world and how it sees us. As leaves drop, we are prompted to release what no longer suits the vision we hold for ourselves. Bare trees invite us to pull our energies back into our roots and reflect. Over the winter, the earth digests the leaves, creating nourishment for the next season of growth.   As we head into the last quarter of 2020, may we be reminded that becoming self-aware is vital to being the change we wish to see in the world. It is our deepest hope that you feel well supported and equipped for your spiritual journey of growth. We are here with you and for you.

Instituto Xilonen


Self-awareness is our ability to be objective when reflecting upon where our inner and outer worlds intersect.

Most of us have a “little voice” inside our head that alerts us when we are true to ourselves or when we’re off-base. It’s the same voice that rejoices when we are greeted with love, or speaks with alarm when a situation feels harsh. In its simplest form, this little voice is our self-awareness.  

Self-awareness requires a level of objectivity. When we are self-aware, we strive to live according to our values. We acknowledge that our words and actions have power, and we are sensitive to how others receive both. Self-awareness works in the opposite direction as well, where we recognize how we respond to and process incoming information. This two-sided approach is what makes self-awareness so interesting. Whether we are looking from the inside out or outside in, self-awareness develops when we can look at both perspectives with honest, realistic, and curious self-inquiry.

There is an internal component to self-awareness, as well. It can be tough to acknowledge how we relate to and treat ourselves, but it is vital to know. Are we as kind to our own tender hearts as we are to others? Or is our self-talk a bit unbridled?  

When we use the events of our lives as mirrors, self-awareness can quickly grow. The shocked look on a barista’s face after an impatient comment tells us that we’ve overstepped. A grateful reaction from a colleague says we are on track. A child asking for snuggle time when we return home from errands reminds us that our email can wait. And a to-do list that derails a five-minute meditation shows us that our self-care needs attention. Events like these create critical feedback loops to show when we align with our values and when we don’t.

Self-awareness provides ample opportunities for conscious inner work. By learning to align what we feel with what we think and do, we can live with more intention and generosity of spirit, toward each other and all beings on the planet.


Ignorance is bliss, as the proverb states. It’s an oft used phrase, but have you ever stopped to ask yourself why? It is easier to be carefree if you remain unaware of a problem or challenge. Our subconscious mind might even seek out ignorance or avoid truth if the alternative is painful or difficult to face.

In reality, we all have parts of us that we’d prefer others, and ourselves, not see. The beauty though, is in what’s possible when we shine the light of self-awareness onto the dark shadows of our being. New opportunities, growth, genuine connection, these are all within reach when we are courageous enough to create space for self-awareness.

Our subconscious mind is skilled at hiding truths it does not want us to discover. Given this predicament, how does one build self-awareness? Start by pausing and paying attention; work to become an impartial observer of your mind, body and spirit. In doing so, you will create more capacity for understanding and compassion. Be willing to notice the feelings you’d rather not feel as these emotions can provide great opportunities for expansion.

Revenge, hate, blame and envy. These are all shame emotions that close us off to growth and possibility. When we notice we are harboring these shame emotions, the common response is to berate ourselves for feeling them. In doing so, we remain ignorant to the powerful message they may be sending. Alternatively, when we approach these feelings with compassion and curiosity, our world can open up. When you notice these emotions, instead of judging, catch yourself. Ask, where is this feeling coming from? What am I yearning for that I am not allowing myself? Bring awareness to what you are feeling physically and observe the shift from shame to understanding. Journaling and meditating on these reflections will bring greater self-awareness and the capacity to choose compassion.

Finally, patience is key. Too often, we crave quick results, we prefer to jump into action, devising a strategy to overcome whatever obstacle we face. The challenge here is to trust that awareness is a powerful tool in and of itself. Shining the light of self-awareness is enough to change our perspective, and our behaviors will follow.

Amy Saltsman, Amy Saltsman Coaching


The color brown is found throughout nature. It represents the earth, wood, and stone. Multiple shades of brown are seen in birds, mammals, reptiles, fish, and insects. This combination of tones provides a cloak of camouflage and safety for wildlife to shelter their young and build communities. Brown’s affinity for the natural world makes it a grounding color that is diverse, warm, and complex – and a great companion when pondering self-awareness.

World-renowned color expert, Jacob Olesen, says “Exuding vigor, stability, and intelligence, the color brown is a powerhouse. Highly sought after for its wisdom, brown offers life-changing insight. Brown provides support and guidance, making it a protector through and through. As a color of many values, brown regards family, duty, and morals with paramount importance. Brown remains loyal to its principles, ensuring that it doesn’t lose sight of who it is, what it wants, and the purpose it serves.”

Spiritually, the color brown is equated with humility. Monks often wore brown robes to signify simplicity, poverty, and God’s connection with the common man. Brown is also associated with fall harvest festivals and giving thanks for our many blessings.

Brown is a composite color, created when various primary or secondary colors are combined. Designer Amanda Guerassio writes, “The plethora of shades in nature made brown an obvious choice for pigments and dyes, and it has been around in art for about 40,000 years. That’s an impressive track record. Many other pigments also degrade to shades of brown over time, so you could say brown is itself the color of history.” 

As the color of history, brown holds many secrets. When deconstructed, brown releases the truth of its original colors. 

In working with self-awareness, the color brown asks us to look past our exterior world and habitual patterns into the inner workings of our soul. Are we displaying a personality designed to protect ourselves from real or perceived threats? Or are we using nature’s gifts to help us ground and find the stability we need for deep inquiry, to pave the way for our true light to shine? As Jacob Olesen says, “Though some colors stimulate the imagination, brown doesn’t fancy make-believe thoughts. Instead, the color brown urges us to remain in the here and now.”  



Smokey invites us to craft the life we want through the harmonious balance of love and will.

Smokey is a magnificent smoky quartz cluster who serves as the Visionary of IX. As one of the first Master Crystals in the IX family, Smokey provides a welcoming presence awaiting any opportunity to help foster awareness and balance.

As a Crystal cluster, Smokey has many points. These beautiful structures reach out, offering help, wisdom, and support. Smokey’s points also enable him to handle many projects at once. With each project, Smokey teaches us how to cultivate awareness, starting with this philosophy:  “If I can see the problem, I can do something about it.”  

After identifying the problem, Smokey reminds us that every solution involves some aspect of letting go and creating anew. By intending to create balance, we learn to integrate the masculine energy of will with the feminine energy of love. When these two energies work together in harmony, new dimensions of complexity and diversity begin to flow, along with solutions that work for all involved.

About the Name Smokey

Ancestors turned to the sky for guidance. Smoke was used as a conduit for prayers and to shift energy. The sacred symbolism of smoke represents the journey to higher consciousness. Smokey’s name honors the mist, fume, or smoke created when one form is destroyed to birth another. This cycle of transformation can be physical, emotional, or spiritual.

Message from Smokey

Life is a journey to unite and balance body, mind, and spirit. Welcome all emotions and thoughts, because each provides information that can deepen self-awareness. Remember that both love and will are necessary to create the life we desire. Use the flow of love to end any sense of separation, along with the flow of will to create the reality you wish to achieve.


Libra Season

October, the month presided over astrologically by beautiful balanced Libra, is punctuated by two Full Moons, the first on October 1st, the second, a Blue Moon, on October 31st, Halloween. Each of these Full Moons illuminate our subconscious patterns, as Full Moons always do. When two Full Moons occur within a calendar month, the second one is referred to as a Blue Moon, which because they are rare, have come to mean metaphorically, a rare occurrence. The Moon governs the subconscious, the realm that by definition glides beneath our conscious awareness. At each Full Moon, maximum light within a given cycle is being shed on what we have been previously unaware of. Here at IX we will be focusing on self-awareness this month, as the nurturing Moon and a number of other planets invite us to deepen our awareness of ourselves by inviting us to explore and retrieve what lies beneath the surface of our conscious knowing. Once in a Blue Moon the heavens conspire to inspire a quantum leap in our self-awareness, and this month looks like just such a time!

The month begins with the Full Moon in Aries on October 1st, illuminated by the lovely Libra Sun, spotlighting issues of beauty, balance, justice and fairness within our relationships, beginning with our relationship to self. Aries, the sign of the self and individuation, always invites us to assert ourselves and advance our authentic desires. The Full Moon in Aries, illuminated by the Sun in balanced, beautiful Libra, highlights our relationship to ourself, which is inevitably reflected in our partnerships and committed relationships. This Full Moon is traveling close to Chiron the healer, and Mars retrograde in Aries, is also in the mix, illuminating personal wounds that show up within our relationships.

Soon after the Full Moon on the 1st, there are a number of astrological aspects that invite further healing and self reflection regarding our relationship to ourselves and to others. On October 2nd, Venus the ruler of Libra leaves Leo the sign of the heart, and heads into Virgo the diagnostic intelligence of the zodiac, inspiring the analytical discernment that will help us pinpoint relationship issues, and issues of self esteem that may have been illuminated by the Aries Full Moon, and require our healing attention. Venus, the Goddess of Love, in Virgo, will be inspiring the intelligent healing of body, mind, spirit and attachment patterns for weeks to come.

On October 4th, Pluto, the planet of emotional depths and transformation, finally stations direct in Capricorn after months of retrograde travel. Pluto along with Saturn and Jupiter spent the spring and summer in retrograde, inviting us to explore the deep structures of our emotional, fiscal, business, and home lives, inspiring big life changes, moves of residence, restructuring of business plans, and exploration of positive and negative ancestral patterns. Back in September Jupiter, then Saturn both stationed direct to begin forward movement once again. As of October 4th Pluto joins them, inviting us to begin advancing massive changes both inner and outer that we are clear about. 

Pluto more than any other planet assists in our growing self awareness through the sometimes painful process of revealing our shadow to us. The shadow is all that we suppress about ourselves, usually because it was not permitted free expression within our family or culture. Pluto often illuminates our shadow through painful feelings, things we fear, addictions, compulsions and projections. The shadow is not only the realm of dark taboo feelings like rage, hatred, jealousy, grief and vulnerability, each of which holds a gift for us. The Shadow also holds the talents, abilities and beautiful qualities that may have been threatening to our early caregivers or the culture in which we grew up. Though Pluto is stationing direct and has highlighted much of the personal and collective shadow over through the spring and summer, on October 13th, we will have further depth work to do when Mercury, the planet of thought, stations retrograde in Scorpio, the sign of the shadow, and begins a retrospective journey through our depths with his lantern of consciousness to illuminate deep entrenched personal and collective patterns that we may still be unaware of.

A few days after Mercury begins his retrograde journey through the underworld, on October 16th, the New Moon in Libra begins a new growing cycle regarding our partnerships, that invites us to go deep and do the work within the cocoon of transformation that will result in a new birth of beauty within ourselves and our beloved relationships. This New Moon contains a great deal of tension that illuminates any fractures within our relationships and relationship patterns. On October 19th Uranus, the planet of awakening aims his spotlight at Mercury retrograde in Scorpio, inspiring personal and collective revelations that could be game liberating changers, as more is revealed.

This New Moon in Libra begins a growing lunar cycle, which carries us into the Scorpio season that begins on October 22nd when the Sun enters Scorpio and further illuminates our depths and the shadow parts that it is time to recover and integrate. These shadow issues will be surfacing within relationships and partnerships especially on October 27th, when lovely Venus heads into the 1st degree of Libra, her home sign, and Mercury retrogrades back into the last degree of Libra from Scorpio. With two planets heading into the 2 critical degrees of Libra on the same day, we are clearly being called to focus on partnerships and learn to love ourselves and others in a beautiful, balanced, fair and just way.

These new growing patterns and revelations will be brought to full light on October 31st, Halloween, when the Full Blue Moon in Taurus traveling with Uranus, the evolutionary awakener, inspires quantum awakening. Both shed light on our growing self-worth, and the dawning self-awareness that leads to empowerment if we have been doing our shadow work. It is especially important to bring a great deal of compassion and self-love to the process of healing, as we explore the realm of the shadow. We may have to confront the dragon of fear guarding the cave of our shadow parts and the crystal treasure and inner wealth they represent when properly integrated.

The Libra Sun will help us to come back to center as we do some deep diving this month. The Libra Sun reminds us that Beauty is the metric that describes all that we desire within our relationships, beginning with our relationship to self, and balance brings us back into harmony with the beauty within. As we commit to greater self-awareness this month, and explore the shadows of former realities, the Libra Sun can remind us that Beauty is our true nature.

To cultivate a relationship with that Beauty, resolve to see it everywhere. Surround yourself with emerald green, the color associated with Libra. Adorn yourself and your abode. Take beauty hints from nature’s incomparable beauty and let her restore you to balance. Bless yourself daily, remembering that you are an expression of Divine Beauty, beloved by the force that created the Moon and the stars and the sparkling seas. Love yourself accordingly.

Demitra Vassiliadis, Heaven To Earth Astrology


Use this quote to connect with and amplify self-awareness in your life.

Use this quote to connect with and amplify self-awareness in your life.

Chakra - Sacral Chakra

The sacral chakra, the second chakra, is located below the navel at the center of the lower abdomen. It is our center of emotions, sensuality, and creativity. The sacral chakra encourages us to live in the space of flow and flexibility, not only feeling the world around us but actively participating in it. A strong connection with the sacral chakra opens us to pleasure and enjoyment. We connect to the divine energy within, accepting change, and enjoying the process of transformation. The power of the sacral chakra inspires us to actively co-create with the Universe in order to live a satisfying and gratifying life.


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In this beautiful video, a Rumi poem invites us to reflect upon our relationship with Crystals and the nourishment they provide.


We created the IX Private Session to ensure that you and your Crystal are a perfect match.



Vianney Bringas is the Resident Crystal Metaphysician of Instituto Xilonen. From the time the Crystals arrive at Instituto Xilonen, Vianney is charged with their proper handling, programming and safekeeping. She designs rituals and conducts workshops on their use and care. She aims to share her extensive knowledge of spiritual practices with Instituto Xilonen’s clients, crafting individualized programs that will help each client achieve their own unique higher consciousness. Learn how to create your own healing Crystal grid with Resident Crystal Metaphysician, Vianney.

Vianney Bringas is the Resident Crystal Metaphysician of Instituto Xilonen. From the time the Crystals arrive at Instituto Xilonen, Vianney is charged with their proper handling, programming and safekeeping. She designs rituals and conducts workshops on their use and care. She aims to share her extensive knowledge of spiritual practices with Instituto Xilonen’s clients, crafting individualized programs that will help each client achieve their own unique higher consciousness. Learn how to create your own healing Crystal grid with Resident Crystal Metaphysician, Vianney.