Last Thursday evening, I drove to Northern Westchester (two hours in the rain) to attend Laura Malfa’s “Spiritual Living Room.” It was well worth the trip! A group of eleven women, each of us in different stages of our spiritual journeys, sat with Laura in her healing space to talk about and share our experiences in the world today.
“Presence” was the word that held the most power. The necessity of staying present, in our bodies, in real time, is the only way out of bondage with our pasts and to avoid being taken hostage by our projections of the future. When we stay present, our light can shine, and we can shift the energy for ourselves and those around us.
Laura Malfa of One Heart Healing is such a light. Being around Laura lifts you. Working with her heals you. I had the honor and pleasure of sitting with Laura in her healing space for this interview just last month. We spoke about her journey and the challenges and opportunities we all face—right here, right now.
Diane: Hi Laura. I have to start by saying that I’m so excited for this interview! You’re such a special person to me—you’ve made a huge difference in my life over the years. I will be eternally grateful for that, and I’d love you to share what you do and who you are with my readers.
Laura: Okay. Great.
Diane: So, you started One Heart Healing. Right?
Diane: Can you tell us what that’s all about and how you became a healer?
Laura: Well, I sort of stumbled into learning about energy work. I had been in therapy when I was quite young, and as a teenager, I felt very drawn to all kinds of healing modalities.
But when I was exposed to hands on healing and energy work for the first time, I felt like it was different, faster in a way. It gets right in there. I was very drawn, at first, mostly for myself but gradually took workshops and just started doing energy work and learning more.
“When something becomes conscious, we have the ability to heal. We can’t heal something we don’t know is causing us a problem”
I honestly never thought I’d have a practice of my own. It started happening organically, where I began offering very simple energy work and hands on healing. There was very little counseling at the time, because I really wasn’t trained that way, but over the years I’ve taken a lot of trainings—Imago therapy and trauma release work, and all kinds of different energy methods—and I’ve developed my own style of energy work. It’s very intuitively based, and now I do counseling, spiritual counseling, and intuitive guidance as well.
What I would say is probably one of my biggest gifts is the ability to sense what a person may not be fully conscious of. I help to verbalize that, and it saves a lot of time. When something becomes conscious, we have the ability to heal. We can’t heal something we don’t know is causing us a problem. We all need help to see ourselves clearly, and it can be very helpful to sit with an intuitive for an hour.
“We are spiritual beings having a human experience.”
We are spiritual beings having a human experience. We, as a culture, Americans especially, don’t really honor the spiritual aspect of who we are. We are physical, emotional, mental and spiritual beings, and ideally all these areas have to be balanced in order for us to thrive. Symptoms can happen on any level to get us to wake up to who we really are.
So that’s kind of what I do in a nutshell. It varies from person to person, depending on what I feel called to do in the moment.
Diane: Can you tell us how you developed your own business and how maybe business and spiritual are not mutually exclusive?
Laura: For me, they’ve always been linked—very much linked to my personal growth as a spiritual being and as a human being. When I started out, I wasn’t really planning on doing this work, per say. I was in the business world.
“I simply wanted to help people in some way.”
Diane: What were you doing?
Laura: I was in retail and advertising. I worked in all aspects of retail, from buying, to being on the sales floor, to being an assistant manager in a store. I worked different product development, hand bags for Ralph Lauren, and all over the place.
Diane: How old were you then?
Laura: I was in my 20s. I left in my early 30s because that business just wasn’t fulfilling. I simply wanted to help people in some way. I knew that I needed something more meaningful but had no idea what it would be.
“Some surprising early cases came my way which I didn’t feel ready for at the time. I thought, “I don’t know why God is sending these people, but there must be a reason.”
I explored a lot of things. I became a physical therapy assistant; I worked at Four Winds, the psychiatric hospital up here in Northern Westchester, NY. I ended up focusing on the energy work when I rented a room in a house with a woman who did healing work and became her apprentice.
I learned a lot and then started opening up to my own intuition and guidance about how to work with energy. I’m very much able to pick up on energy and read it, sense it and understand it.
From there, I started seeing people for very simple healings and for physical things. Some surprising early cases came my way which I didn’t feel ready for at the time. I thought, “I don’t know why God is sending these people, but there must be a reason.”
It just really started on its own. I didn’t promote myself, but I was in the healing center where people were drawn to me as an energy healer, so I was working doing healings. Eventually I left that setting and opened my own office where I started doing my own trainings, helping people learn about energy work and their healing gifts, whatever they might be. Each person has a way of working and opening that is very natural to them.
“There is a ripple when we put something into the world. So, this is probably why I feel still compelled to teach.”
Diane: What drew you to be a teacher?
Laura: You know, I don’t know. It’s like I am compelled to teach.
I started offering small healers training classes and then it turned into a regular group that has now been meeting for about 15 years!! The primary focus was to give them tools and techniques so that they could learn how to work with energy. When they used the techniques, I could observe how they worked naturally and then reflect it back to them. This really helped them to understand their gifts and know how to use them.
I’ve also taught a lot of meditation and different classes focused on personal and spiritual growth. It’s important for anyone who is working with others to continue their own conscious spiritual evolution. Staying open, receptive and at a high vibration is imperative to being able to see clearly for others and be a clear conduit for energy.
Diane: I was in some of those classes.
Laura: You were. You and I are still in contact, but sometimes I run into people that I haven’t seen in a long time, and I can see that it really has had an effect. It’s so humbling and makes me very happy. There really is a ripple. You know what I mean?
Laura: There is a ripple when we put something into the world. So, this is probably why I feel still compelled to teach. I’ve taken a break but am planning on doing some workshops that really speak to those that have been on a spiritual path for some time and are wondering what’s next. I’ve gotten some pretty clear guidance on this subject and I’m feeling ready to share it.
“We’re all the same and we all have our own gifts. It’s just a matter of when it’s your time to become aware of that”
Diane: How would that look?
Laura: I like to see it as sharing information that inspires people to take the next step. The wisdom is already in us. It just needs to be awakened and recognized.
Diane: Does the title “teacher” feel too hierarchical?
Laura: I feel we’re all the same and we all have our own gifts. It’s just a matter of when it’s your time to become aware of that. Now is a great time of spiritual awakening. I meet people all the time who are interested in energy work, intuition and spiritual awareness. It wasn’t at all like this 20 years ago …
Diane: Can you walk us through what a session with you might be like?
“While I’m working with the energy, I really try to keep my mind out of it. I try to stay as open as I can, so I can hear my intuition and whatever I may need to share with that person”
Laura: Yes. Usually, people come, we sit together, and they share their reason for coming. Usually they come because they’re suffering in some way, whether it be physical or emotional. They might need to deal with something in their life they don’t feel prepared to deal with, or maybe for help with their next steps in a job or a relationship. It’s not always a problem; sometimes it’s about their spiritual growth and guidance.
Then we move to a massage table and do the energy work. They lie down and I try to make them very comfortable with a blanket and pillows. Then the hands-on energy work begins. It can vary, but generally I start at their feet because it gives them time to acclimate to the energy. Some people feel it immediately. It can be any number of sensations when the energy starts moving through their bodies—heat, cold, vibration, tingling, heaviness to name a few.
“I’ve come to really trust when I’m not getting something clearly, it isn’t meant to be seen yet.”
While I’m working with the energy, I really try to keep my mind out of it. I try to stay as open as I can, so I can hear my intuition and whatever I may need to share with that person. I’ve heard their story, but when I’m doing the energy work, it’s my opportunity to let that go, so I can just receive what I need to receive for them.
Usually, a theme arises, and intuitions come to me. Sometimes it’s very strong and can be very specific. Other times, it can be less clear… but over the years, I’ve come to really trust when I’m not getting something clearly, it isn’t meant to be seen yet. Either I’m not supposed to know it and help them know it, or they’re supposed to get it on their own. Or the person’s really not ready yet for what needs to come through for them.
In that case, I would just do the energy work. And sometimes I get something that I don’t feel can be shared with the person at that time.
“A woman who came to see me after her child had died. I heard very clearly in my head, “It’s a gift.” There was no way I was going to share that, but I held that for her during the session, and she herself actually said later on that she had received many gifts from this”
Diane: Like you don’t think they’re ready?
Laura: No, not ready. It’s not about ready, but sometimes I’m just not comfortable sharing what came through for them.
Diane: Because? What might be a reason?
Laura: Well, I can give you an example. It doesn’t happen often, but on one occasion something came to me that I didn’t feel I could share. A woman who came to see me after her child had died. I heard very clearly in my head, “It’s a gift.” There was no way I was going to share that, but I held that for her during the session, and she herself actually said later on that she had received many gifts from this. So, I didn’t need to say it. She received it herself. Maybe because I was holding it, maybe not.
It would have to be a very specific case for me to be willing to share something like that without first being with the person for quite some time.
“It takes time for the body to be like, ‘Okay, I can relax and actually receive.’”
Diane: Definitely. So, the table work generally lasts … I mean I’ve been on the table so many times, but I have no clue. How long does the table work usually last?
Laura: Usually, we do about an hour session. Usually, it’s about a half hour talking and a half hour on the table. Sometimes, if people are very depleted physically, I would try to make it longer on the table, giving their body an opportunity to really open up. Bodies sometimes don’t open right away, depending on what the person’s going through. It takes time for the body to be like, “Okay, I can relax and actually receive.”
Sometimes, if they’re very shielded or guarded energetically too, they’re not able to receive. If somebody’s very depleted, a little bit longer on the table can be beneficial. I can also do longer sessions for people upon request. Sometimes people come from a distance, and they feel they need to have a two-hour session. We can certainly do that. I’m very flexible that way.
Diane: And then afterwards you do like a little … what would you call that? A regrouping? Processing?
Laura: When I work energetically, I don’t always share what I’m getting right away. Sometimes people go into a very deep state, and I don’t want to disturb them by talking. You, for example, are very sensitive to energy, and you really go deep. I may share a little bit while I’m doing the hands on, but generally I try to wait till after. You’re already working with the energy so deeply, and I don’t want to disrupt that.
So yes, so we’ll come back, and we’ll sit, and I’ll share any impressions I got, and generally the person has a few things they want to share with me. Sometimes I also pull an angel card to give the person some guidance. I tune in intuitively to the card and tell them what I’m sensing about it for them.
“Life can hit me over the head … And it’s like, all right, what’s my message here?”
Diane: Do you go for energy work for yourself?
Laura: I do. I work with a healer over the phone who helps me with what I am working on. Sometimes I have a theme that arises, and I need someone to give me perspective and energy. I also have a crystal bed that use on myself a lot.
Diane: What’s a crystal bed?
Laura: The crystal bed uses seven Vogel crystals suspended over the body to help clear the chakras and any energetic debris. It is especially helpful for empaths, sensitives, doctors, nurses and anyone who is a caretaker. I love using it on myself and others because it works without a lot of processing and really helps balance, clear and align the chakras.
Diane: So you just lie there, and it does its own work?
Diane: How do you personally know when you need an energy healing?
Laura: Since I know how I feel when I’m balanced, I also know when I have gone out of balance and need some energy work. Life can also hit me over the head when necessary and then I know that I need some help. I don’t know if you’ve ever had that experience but things like that happen.
Diane: Oh me? Never hit over the head! (LOL)
Laura: And it’s like, all right, what’s my message here? So, you get some sort of shock to your system and then you say, what do I need to learn from this?
I really tune in and sometimes I can sense it for myself, but sometimes I can’t. That’s when I call someone.
“The energy on the planet is in constant flux right now, which can make it very difficult to stay balanced, so we all need help from time to time.”
Diane: Do you still do phone work for other people?
Laura: Yes, I do.
Diane: How does that differ from the work done in person?
Laura: I do a lot of phone work or distance healing work as I call it. The main difference is that I don’t make physical contact. The energy work is not dependent on physical contact, but sometimes physical contact can be very comforting. It depends on what the person is working on.
Diane: Touch can be very healing.
Laura: Yes. When a person is going through something emotional, touch can be very soothing. There really isn’t a difference to the intuitive or energetic aspect of my work when I work at a distance, though. In fact, I’ve sometimes had my greatest clarity when working at a distance. Sometimes, it’s so much easier to just tune in from a picture.
Diane: I would bet. Yeah. Because that other stuff doesn’t get in the way.
Laura: Yes. The stories serve a purpose, but sometimes the problem they’re having is unrelated to the story and the story can cloud things up.
I work with regularly with some people with whom I just have email exchanges. They send me an email, “This is what I need to work on.” And I’ll say, “Okay, I’ll work on it and I’ll send you an email after.”
Diane: Oh, so you’re not even on the phone together?
Laura: No. I can structure a session in any number of ways depending on how well I know someone. We can do all phone work, all email, or a combination of the two.
“We have incarnated into this body to learn and to awaken to who we really are. This is the purpose for being in physical form”
Diane: You said that for a lot of people, especially in our culture, the spiritual piece is missing.
Diane: Can you talk a little bit about that and then maybe about what you do for the spiritual piece?
Laura: Our focus is on being in the world as a person, as a human being. Yes, we are in a human body, but we are also divine beings. We have incarnated into this body to learn and to awaken to who we really are. This is the purpose for being in physical form.
To awaken to the truth of who we are is really the only purpose for being here. We’re so caught up in daily life struggles and survival that we forget there is a purpose. If you ever have the opportunity to be around an awakened being like Mooji, the Dali Lama, Eckhart Tolle, Rupert Spira, to name a few, they say the only reason for incarnating is to awaken to our true nature.
Diane: I just have to tell you that I believe one of my purposes for being here is to help others be seen for who they really are.
Diane: That’s why I do this blog for women over 50, because we’re so invisible in our culture, and this other project with formally incarcerated men who are seen by many as monsters. When you say we’re here to connect with our true nature that so resonates. Maybe helping others be seen for who they truly are is my way of finding out who I really am.
Laura: Yes. Well if you’re teaching that, you are stripping away all of these labels. On some level, we are teaching what we are learning ourselves. Right?
Diane: Absolutely. I, myself, have felt invisible for so much of my life.
Laura: I feel that’s what compels us to take it out into the world. That, “Oh my god,” we’ve discovered this for ourselves and now we want to share it. We want others to also benefit from the awakening that we’ve had.
Diane: And that’s what you’re doing with your practice.
“When people are suffering, they know inherently that something’s missing”
Laura: Pretty much. Whether or not a person is ready to really know the truth of who they are, which is a divine being, I am always holding that for them. When people are suffering, they know inherently that something’s missing. It’s our own true nature that we’re not aware of, that’s what’s missing, and we will not be satisfied until we find it. I’ve experienced that myself. I have learned so many techniques and taken classes, read up on so much energy work, gotten my own guidance, meditated and channeled this and done that. I’ve written—I have a computer full of writing, but still I was seeking.
It doesn’t mean none of that learning is important. That’s all great. That’s the icing on the cake. Once you know your true self, you can do all that and you have an anchor for your life. So many people are still asleep to that awareness, and I believe that this is a time on the planet where we’re more and more ready and able to wake up to the truth. The time is now!!
“The true self is always with us because it’s who we are, and it’s infusing our lives even when we are not fully aware of it”
Diane: I definitely agree with you there. I also think that there’s a time in life when you’re ready to find it, and I think 50 is just this magic shift, because you don’t care so much about how the world views you anymore.
Laura: It’s true.
Diane: And how old were you would you say when you found your anchor?
Laura: Well, I knew of it for a long time. This is the weird thing—the true self is always with us because it’s who we are, and it’s infusing our lives even when we are not fully aware of it. It’s always there because we can’t not be who we really are.
When I first consciously became aware of it, I was like, “Oh my god, we’re like the God self. We’re really, we’re part of God.” We are the source; we are part of the source of all living things. We’re not separate from that. It was knowledge.
And now it has become more of a knowing in my being. Now, I’ve experienced myself as that. There are people teaching this in the world. Eckhart Tolle been teaching it forever, Mooji is one of my teachers, Amma … and there are a lot of others. When we become consciously aware of it, when we really understand that this is who we are and we focus on it, that’s when it has the most power in our lives.
I’ve been doing that for the last five years.
Diane: So tell me if I’m wrong here, but it feels the way you described it, it’s now your center and before you were maybe walking around the perimeter?
Laura: Yeah. Like I knew it, but it wasn’t yet my lived experienced.
Diane: Yeah, okay.
“We women are the potential for the future”
Laura: Something enabled me to become aware of it as me. I still get caught up in life drama, obviously. It’s life, but I never lose sight of the truth. My personal drama has calmed down a lot, because when you know your true position, the stuff that I used to get really swept up in, it becomes, “I just can’t.”
You start to see some of your past actions and it’s like, “Oh god.”
Diane: Cringe worthy. Right?
Laura: What was I doing? But we all do that because we’re all learning, and we’re all opening and coming to an understanding in our own time.
Diane: So, I’m going to say one word to you: Women.
Diane: Tell me.
Laura: We women are the potential for the future. Over my lifetime, certainly, women have progressed so much in the world, but … I really feel we need to be equal in government, in power, basically, on this planet, and because we’re not, there is so much unrest in the world.
It’s an imbalance. It’s not that the masculine is bad. It’s nothing like that, but the planet can benefit from both masculine and feminine working together. The nurturing and the care and the wisdom of women is so needed in the world. I feel we are the future, and even the Dalai Lama, another awakened being, said that the Western woman will change the world.
Diane: When? When? We’re waiting!
“As I have a greater ability to know my true self, the suffering fades and lessens”
Laura: I hope that what’s currently happening is motivating. It is obviously motivating more and more women, but yeah, we need to step up. We have a lot to bring.
Diane: It’s like the line of reasoning that if you don’t learn your lesson, you get hit harder, it comes to you stronger, to kind of push you into that awakening. Do you think that’s what’s happening in our world now?
Laura: Yes. There will be suffering which makes us more receptive to growth and change and in fact, it’s the only way we really grow. That happens personally also, and it’s what has kept me seeking and has propelled me my entire life. As I have a greater ability to know my true self, the suffering fades and lessens.
Diane: Isn’t that wonderful?
Laura: It’s the best. It’s the best.
Diane: It’s so wonderful. It’s interesting how this is an individual problem, but it makes for a global problem. Right?
Laura: Yeah. It really does.
Diane: And so once you’ve discovered individually what you’re about, then you’re more able to make a difference on the global level?
“Energy shifts are happening regularly, which is why it can feel like we’re on a bit of a roller coaster ride energetically”
Laura: Oh completely. If we’re talking about awakening to the truth, we have to become aware of how the ego is operating in our lives. Ultimately, the ego level and our conditioning, and the things that we have infused with our belief that aren’t true, start falling away. Let’s just use women as an example. We grew up a certain way in our households, with certain beliefs, and we just took them on because of how we were raised. As we come into the truth that we’re so much more than that, that we are actually divine beings having a human experience, conditioning that limits us can fall away in big chunks. The idea of full awakening is that we are no longer encumbered by the false self that saps us of energy.
There are always going to be remnants, and there’s nothing wrong with that. But the real limiting stuff, the stuff that won’t let you get out of the bed in the morning. Once that kind of stuff falls away, the light of your presence becomes so great. Even speaking about it …
Diane: I feel so much going on energetically listening to you!
Laura: Just the light of our being that is unencumbered by ego is so beautiful. Think of Buddha. He lived 3500 years ago, and people are still becoming Buddhist today because he was awake. The Dalai Lama. Jesus Christ. He was an awakened being who’s had a huge impact. I think it’s been somewhat skewed, unfortunately, in Christianity, but nonetheless the being himself was awake. Now humanity has this opportunity to wake up to the truth of who we are.
“The energies are working very differently now for healing, and we have a unique opportunity in our evolution right now”
Diane: Do you feel that people are coming to you now with different issues or in different places? Like are they healing more quickly? Do you notice anything?
Laura: Yes, the energies are working very differently now for healing, and we have a unique opportunity in our evolution right now; we are in a very pivotal and powerful time. Energy shifts are happening regularly, which is why it can feel like we’re on a bit of a roller coaster ride energetically. There are huge shifts happening all the time.
Diane: We see that with the weather.
Laura: Yeah, the weather’s crazy. Everything’s crazy, but also, you see it with innovation, new inventions, there’s going to be a lot more of that. There are going to be a lot of breakthroughs in different areas, and for our consciousness, we also have a unique opportunity to really grow exponentially.
Diane: And how do we do that?
Laura: I would say that those that are ready feel called. I believe if you are called, you can’t miss it, and a process will unfold in your life. Some may even resonate to what we’ve spoken about today and they’ll know it. Generally, those that are ready for this have had enough suffering and really can’t take any more and feel ready to let go more.
It will unfold and they will also seek it out, and they’ll think, “This is what I’m here for.”
“The Spiritual Living Room is a place where people can come to share and discuss what’s next on their spiritual path”
Gradually, we become aware of the ego that is diminishing our light, and we just start to take our power and attention away from it. It’s really exciting when we first start doing this because it has an immediate positive effect on our life. Then it starts to gain life for itself, and you become less and less encumbered. Your light gets stronger automatically, and you feel lighter and happier naturally.
There are a lot of resources in the world for this. Or someone may feel drawn to a specific person that might help. I feel this is what I’m preparing to share with people more and more.
Diane: That’s what I was just going to ask you. You’re resisting a bit, but you feel it’s time?
Laura: I think it’s time for me to share this. I can speak of it fairly clearly and have been sharing it in small groups already.
Diane: Do you know what that’s going to look like for you?
Laura: I’m calling it the Spiritual Living Room, and it’s a place where people can come to share and discuss what’s next on their spiritual path. I will be introducing some of the concepts we’ve spoken about, which are basically non-duality and exploring how to apply this understanding to our lives. This have been coming up in my practice, and I’ve had a couple of young teenagers who have come and have had these tremendous, amazing experiences.
Diane: Young women?
Laura: Young women and young men.
“The magnitude of what I’m sharing can feel overwhelming”
Diane: Do you see this as like an evening gathering and then you’ll have groups or …
Laura: It’ll be in the evening at first. I’m also thinking I’d like to do a virtual group at some point. I’m going to start in person because I think it’ll be small, and it may stay small. I don’t know. I really have no agenda for how it goes. This is what I feel in my heart to share.
Diane: Groups are powerful. Right?
Laura: Yeah. I’ve known you for so long, and you’ve been on a spiritual path for a long time. I know a lot of other people like you who are doing their own thing, and it’s so cool. They may feel called to go deeper and understand from this perspective, so I thought if it resonates, then it resonates. I really trust that completely, and I know that that’s what will happen if I’m meant to do that. You know?
Diane: Mm-hmm. Is it scary?
Laura: The magnitude of what I’m sharing can feel overwhelming when I think too much. When I’m talking about it, it’s not scary. It’s very inspiring.
Diane: Think out loud then!
Laura: It’s just really about not listening to that self-talk-
Diane: That chatter.
Laura: Yeah, and just trusting that there’s something deeper that’s actually calling me.
Diane: Well, I’m very excited about your next step. Laura, this was wonderful. Thank you so much for sharing with us! I am sure that this will resonate with many.
As always, I would love to hear your thoughts! Please post a comment or send me an email!
And have a wonderful week!
See you next Friday!