Shirley MacLaine is an accomplished actress and writer and when she sat down to discuss her newest book, Sage-ing While Age-ing, she talked about her life and beliefs. She is an intelligent woman who is not afraid to voice her own thoughts and beliefs and is very happy with her life at the moment. "I'm happy with it," she proclaims. "There's a lot I'd like to improve, but not a lot of that has to do with my life. I'm really happy and content with my life. I'm not happy and content with the news, but I haven't yet turned it off."

Ms. MacLaine is definitely not happy with the state of the world and the fear that terrorism has added to our everyday lives. "I think we're afraid. I think we really are consumed with fear about terrorism, about the future, about our jobs, about where we're going, and you know the old adage, 'Go out and buy yourself a hat if you don't feel well.' I think that's what we're doing, and I think the materialism is an attempt to try to solve our fear about life." She explains that "going within" is what people need to do, rather than to look outwards. "What I'm saying is, go within yourself and that center will be attached to the divine, and whatever it is you're going through there will be a reason for it. But then, you know, I don't believe we die. I think the soul is eternal so, therefore, I'm not afraid of bad; therefore, I'm not afraid of other realities because I'm old enough now to have been through many adventures where my life really was at stake, and I was always protected because I went within and asked for help."

Her new book is for everyone, but she discloses that young people will be greatly helped by her writings. "...the ones that I really want to read it are the young; the young college kids ... The older people are already doing this if they have that inclination. If they had some disease or they've been cast away from their family or they're broke or whatever, they're already into, 'What does all this mean and what do I do about it?' The younger people are the ones I'd like (it) to make some sense to, so they don't make the mistakes that we've made." She says meditating is the way to understand our lives and going within is simply meditating.

MacLaine is noted for talking about extraterrestrials, reincarnation, souls, and energy. "My first experience (with aliens was when), I was 18. I was in Arlington, Virginia, right across the river from Washington, because that's where I'm from. A couple of squadrons of UFOs buzzed the Capitol and the White House. It's documented, July 19, 1952," she explains without any hesitation. "Nobody knew what to do. The switchboard's lit up and Truman got General Stanford to go on television - the head of the military - and say, 'We don't know what they are.' - I've still got the kinescope" she says. "(Stanford proclaimed, 'They're not ours and they're not Russian.' So that was my first experience." She adds, "That really piqued my interest," Wouldn't it pique yours too? She even brings up the fact that Monsignor Balducci, a member of the governing body of the Vatican, has often publicly stated that extraterrestrials are real.

"I've seen lots of crafts, especially in New Mexico where I live," confides the actress/writer. "They're all over the place there. I think they're attracted to the crystals in the land there and also in Peru. But I've never had the pleasure of meeting one." However she says she would love to meet one. She also says that if she were to actually meet an extraterrestrial she would jump at the chance to go on the spaceship and experience a new adventure.

MacLaine was very close to the Rat Pack of Frank Sinatra, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis, and the rest of the group. Some might be surprised to know that Shirley had company among her friends with her beliefs. "Frank got very interested reincarnation. You know, he went and visited the Pope at the end of his life, and we had talks about his belief that he had been before and that he had had experience with music, because he talked a lot to me about how he was always hearing these chords and these musical things in his mind all his life. And he thought it came from some other previous existence. Dean didn't talk so much about it. Sammy was very interested in it. He was interested, by the way, in the dark side of things. That's why he walked around with all those body guards with his gold chains," she discloses.

"We're souls who are experiencing the physical. I was out of the body. I was looking down at myself and at the world," she explains about her first out-of-body experience. Whether you believe her or not, there is some comfort in her philosophies. And just sitting with her there is a feeling of calm and serenity, even though she says about the future, "It's going to be horrible. It's going to be worse than it is now." So how does she stay so calm about it? "It's that thing that it's all happening for a reason. We keep hearing that every day. It's what we're born to learn. But there's another thing. I think some of us are going to experience parallel realities, - because I've been into this for so long and I really mean it - it's not like I'm doing this to sell anything. I really mean this. I love to do my seminars because I like to share and to teach, and I believe it totally. Therefore with that, that's well-schooled too, I believe I will be living a parallel reality."

She calmly explains, "It's that I won't be here for the earthquake. That is a reality that will occur here, but I will be in a reality that is left in time. I won't experience a nuclear thing because I'm not afraid of it. I simply don't want it. That gets to the secret. But I do understand the power of it enough to know I don't want it. If I do experience these things it will be in the act of learning something else, and also chronicling it. Because I'm supposed to write about it. I just feel like I'm somehow in alignment with my destiny, and that's why I'm not afraid." This is one great way to reduce the stress of life. Note to myself - listen and learn from Shirley! One thing that disturbs her is the security at airports and, as she refers to them, the 'TSA thugs.' She says with a slight grin, "I get in touch with my violence going through security at the airport"

May 21, 2012 is going to be an interesting time for us all, according to MacLaine, "because May 21, 2012 there's going to be a complete line up of several solar systems - our solar system, the Pleiadian solar system, the Orion solar system, Andromeda, etc,." This is a unique thing. "First time in 26,000 years," she says. "End of the zodiac." 26,000 years is a long time. "So that alignment of those solar systems is going to bombard us with such energy and such light that we won't even be able to see it. From May 21, 2012 to December 21, 2021 we will -this is all my opinion - we will adjust to that light, adjust to that energy, (and) adjust to that alignment." Shirley admits, "It will freak out a lot of people and others will go on to understanding a new level of consciousness. It's right there in Revelations, by the way, and so by the end of that 6 month period, everyone will have made their decision. And a lot of people will get sick out of this energy field, and others will expand and match the energy." She feels so strongly about this upcoming time, and it's only four and a half years away.

"But there's a date before that, that I wrote about (in my book) and ... I think that is 2009, which is the time when we are really going to be aware but the alignment hasn't happened yet. The dragon in ancient lore is always the consciousness, because it drives us crazy. Consciousness can be maddening, so the examination of the consciousness will begin to arrive on the nine. That's 2009. And then we have three years to adjust to that alignment on 2012, May 21st." 2009 is one year away!

Besides acting and writing, MacLaine is toying with the idea of a jewelry line and the day of the interview she was wearing several turquoise pieces she designed herself. "Turquoise protects against radiation, so the Indians really knew what they were doing. I love these different colors of turquoise against the pearl. It's quite beautiful." She wore turquoise earrings and several different rings, all of which were very attractive and unique.

Shirley MacLaine has had countless co-stars in her films and recently she worked with Jennifer Aniston and before that Julia Roberts. She admires these two women and the way they handle themselves in their public lives. "Julia's done a remarkable job by the way, if she means it, and I think she does so far. She's a girl from Smyrna, Georgia. I mean, what do you expect? She likes to be a mother and a homemaker, and we'll see how long that lasts, but I think for now it's true. And Jennifer is this extraordinary teacher. When we went through doing Rumor Has It, I watched her go through this (tough time) and I thought how many wives have been jilted? And the way her behavior - how she comported herself - was a real public example of this very mature (woman), even though she was suffering. And I really admired her for that."

About the other young women who are making headlines, Britney, Paris and Lindsay, Shirley comments, "I think that they're teaching that the addiction to fame can often ruin you. (What) the addiction to having your picture taken all the time can do to the soul. Because everybody somehow wants to be famous. I don't understand that," she confesses.

"The moment People Magazine was published I thought, 'OK we're into tabloid nation here. Watch what's going to happen.' The moment that came out, oh my God." However she concedes she is interested in the tabloids. "Those guys get so much money to put microphones under beds in hospitals that they get the story before anybody else." But she is also quick to point out that perhaps the public doesn't really need those stories.

Shirley has a great sense of humor as well as intelligence. When asked how old she is, considering all her past lives, she chuckles and replies, "That's an interesting question. Oh my God. I can't count that high."

As for some final advice, Shirley MacLaine simply says, "Just take some time to touch that power within you."

Sage-ing While Age-ing is currently available at your local bookstore. Shirley MacLaine has three more films in various stages of production. She has won an Oscar, and Emmy, several Golden Globes and many other awards in her illustrious acting career.