This is an ongoing US and global project to help enthusiasts, scholars, practitioners, and curious parties learn more about shamanic living in a contemporary culture. The space here is devoted to sharing info, experiences and opinions about all forms of shamanic expression covering shamanism's multiple permutations. Among subjects explored are traditions, techniques, insights, definitions, events, artists, authors, and creativity. You are invited to draw from your own experiences and contribute.

What is a SHAMAN?

MAYAN: "a technichian of the Holy, a lover of the Sacred." CELTIC: "Empower the people...by changing the way we think." MEXICAN APACHE: "Someone who has simply learned to give freely of themselves..." AUSTRALIAN ABORIGINAL: "...a teacher or healer, a wisdom keeper of knowledge... (who) takes people to a door and encourages them to enter." W. AFRICAN DIAGRA: "views every event in life within a spiritual context." HAWAIIAN: "...human bridges to the spiritual world and its laws and the material world and its trials..." QUECHUA INDIAN: "embodies all experience." AMAZON: "...willing to engage the forces of the Universe...in a beneficial end for self, people, and for life in general."

-- from Travelers, Magicians and Shamans (Danny Paradise)

Monday, February 18, 2008

Being Stretched

During our February 6th conference call, we had a discussion around how one would switch from the victim mind set to the mindset of one going through initiation when faced with challenges. How would one then handle a situation differently? I gave great thought to this question and it has come up quite often for me since then in the face of challenge.

This concept was further driven home for me in reading Mutant Down Under. There were several parts of the book that I found quite helpful in assisting me in some real times of difficulty as of late. It provided me with a shift in perspective to assist me in walking through emotions and states of being that are very difficult and emotionally excruciating for me to hold.

In chapter 3, the story describes how the mutant had to walk through the desert on spinifex, with blades and thorns entering and cutting her feet. The learning was to go deeper and focus one’s attention else where, each step going farther. Eventually, her feet developed enough toughness that she acquired the ability to withstand walking on such surfaces without such pain. Chapter 9 described how when the Real People sense the bush flies approaching, they immediately stop, close their eyes, stand still, arms hanging limply at the side. They surrender to the experience. To them, everything has a purpose. In the case of the flies, they assisted in cleansing the body and eliminating toxins. The real people believed that humans cannot exist if everything that is unpleasant is eliminated rather than understood.

The concept of walking through my challenge as an initiation and the concepts and imagery provided in the book really assisted me through that difficult time. I found that when I perceived my experience as an initiation, I was unwilling to participate in old fixes to alleviate my discomfort. I was willing to go the distance. Rather than trying to fight the feelings, I surrendered to them on a deeper level than I had previously been able to when faced with these emotions. Although difficult, I moved my focus and my attention to a deeper place within me where I could just be the observer. I was observing my own cleansing and hollowing out; in a way, experiencing an undoing to make room for more of me and being ok with it! I asked to understand and learn from what was happening. I imagined myself as the tree limb that was being hollowed out by termites and used to make a didgeridoo that would play great music in chapter 17. I was giving thanks to the healing that was already taking place. These shifts in perspective assisted me in going deeper and father than ever before. I was definitely stretched. Definitely something to celebrate!

Glad to have the space to share,

She Who Remembers


ancientwindrunner said...

Congratulations S W R!!
Thank you for sharing your experience and allowing us to celebrate your beingness with you.

As in the MMDU, Chapter 26, page 164...


Allowing the light said...

Well, we should definitely meet to celebrate... I have a bottle of Champagne at home someone brought some time and we never drunk it. As the Real People say, instead of celebrating getting older (something that takes no effort), we should celebrate becoming better and wiser (p. 78); so this is your call: do you feel like celebrating? if so, whenever you wish...
Great job anyway! And thank you for sharing.
We hold you in that process (I hold your feet...).
Love, B & ATL

She.Who.Remembers said...

Thank you both for your support! Yes, I am definitely always in for a celebration! :)

Allowing the light said...

Propose some dates and we organize something at my place! At least, Still Waters should be able to come and whoever else would feel like venturing into DC (probably easier for them if it's at the end of the week like a Friday or Saturday)!
Cheers! B & ALT