Undo what has been done Step back and see the sun Let go of all that which keeps me bound Create space for what is, for what I’ve found Along the way, day after day The veil thins, and I pray: “Oh powerful creator – Free me of burdens and pressure To be, something other than, Myself fully. Lift my spirits, and Clear the smoke from in front of my eyes. Bless my body, bless my home And bless my loved ones, all beings of earth. So that we may shine and share our Truth For the betterment and ascension of this planet. Thank you, I salute – To the sun, moon, stars, sky and earth East, south, west and north. Thank you, I pray – Help me to see another day Help me to serve my people Help me to heal and grow Until it is my time to go Thank you for all that you do May it be so – Thank You and I Love You.”
A Shaman in its most fundamental and westernized terminology means Healer. However, all Healers practice different modalities, and some may not resonate with Shamanic specific techniques. Therefore, not all Healers are Shamans. This word is used often, especially in Boulder County, which in most cases is a great thing (as it speaks to the ancient practices being revolutionized to fit our changing world!), but it can also be a bit confusing. No, Shamans do not have to be from indigenous societies to be powerful practitioners and healers, although there are many that are. Shamanism stems back hundreds of thousands of years. We do not know exactly how far back, but it is shown in prehistoric cave drawings that there was reverence for the animals and people in the community.
Shaman also means “one who sees in the dark”. Shamans are frequently referred to as hollow; they act as channels for high vibrational Spirit energy to move through them for a specific purpose and intention. Shamans clearly see and heal through their ability to be heart-centered, present and open, yet humble and honest. Acting as hollow vessels for frequencies that we are typically closed off to in our everyday lives, Shamans are bridges between this world and the spiritual worlds. Shamans work closely with Spirit helpers and guides, power animals, angels, ancestors, nature beings and invisible forces to serve the highest good and benefit of all. They are highly intuitive and open to their psychic abilities by being connected to that which is greater. It is their mission to bring enhanced balance and ease to the people and life forms of Earth. It is also common for Shamans to work closely with herbs, rocks, minerals and other earthly spirits. A shaman knows and feels that there is a Spirit in all things and works to build “right” relationship with each.
Shamans understand the importance of ritual, community, ceremony and rites of passage. They were the original doctors back before we had Western medicine. Those in need would visit the Shaman for healing from everything and anything: physical symptoms, emotional pain, mental instability and more. Shamans understand that illness, disease, imbalance, pain and suffering are more complex than our modern society likes to think, however I do feel that this is changing. Shamans treat illness and imbalance on subtle levels, because they know that all physical things have a spiritual root. We would be silly to ignore the power of Western medicine today, but Shamanism can offer a deeper and adjacent route to address the ailment and provide positive, healthy change.
There are many practices and techniques, including: Shamanic Journeys, Transmissions, Extractions, Soul Retrievals, Power Renewals and more. They also have many tools in their toolbox, not limited to: medicine songs, healing words, buffalo drums, rattles, feathers, herbs, plants, crystals and more.
Shamanic principles, practices and tools are available to all of us. You do not have to be called a Shaman to embrace the benefits! It is a way of life – to bring in greater harmony, respect, connection, truth, love and energy into the everyday. It is the path of direct revelation, meaning each person who lives a Shamanic life has their own unique experiences within it. It is not limited; there are no rights or wrongs; there are no rules. It is that of meaning and that of liberation. You and Spirit lead the way together.
I hope this information was valuable to you!
Wishing you a blessed & safe holiday, new year & new decade!XOXO, S
I hope you are enjoying this healing, dark time of year as the sun shines less and the moon shines more.
I used to really dislike winter…you know…the cold, the lack of sun, the longer nights. But recently, I have found the sheer beauty and comfort in being home cozy, rested, reflective, and mostly in the dark.
The photo above was taken just as the season was changing to fall…I am in Rocky Mountain National State Park surrounded by mountain air, water, sunshine, and rock. I love this image because it beautifully shows the balance between light and dark, and also because there is an awesome orb glowing with the color of my Lifeforce – bright blue! 😀
The seasons are a great example of the entire spectrum available to us in the Universe. We have spring/summer (the light side) and fall/winter (the dark side). For most of my life, I was labeling or judging the dark (winter) as “less-than” instead of viewing it as an equal part of the greater whole.
The distinction between light and dark can be compared to many oppositions and reflections that are parts of one total whole….good and bad, self and other, earth and universe… there are an infinite amount of examples. When we open our perceptions to see the totality of each experienced spectrum, we also open to the beauty and the healing in each and every part. One gives definition to the other. We know there would be no light without dark, no good without bad, no self without other, and no earth without the universe.
Through our perception do we actually create each experience we have.
Through our perception do we actually create the Universe.
And the Universe always responds.
Shamanically, it is believed that we actually dream the world into being. I first learned this from teacher Sandra Ingerman. We dream the world into being through our thoughts, beliefs, actions, and perceptions. Because we are all a part of the Universe, we are all co-creating this world together. Individually, we have our personalized belief systems for which we base our own perceptions and actions around. And yes, surely some overlap with the “collective” as well. The “collective” is defined by me as being the Universal “way” dreamed into all of our beings by centuries of programmed beliefs, actions, and behaviors of mankind.
When the veil of illusion lifts away, when you begin to SEE the truth of your reality – things actually become a bit lighter and certainly clearer! We consciously begin to understand our most in depth under-the-surface workings, our unique code to how we function and perceive reality. You can call this getting to know our subconscious or unconscious Self. And, we actually build the foundation for our Life through our subconscious and unconscious Self – these parts we are mostly unfamiliar with.
We certainly dream our world into being through our deepest parts such as these…
Give yourself a moment to look within yourself for your answers:
With awareness, gaze around you…shift your perspective so that you may be able to SEE the whole…then ask yourself…
How does my home space reflect me, both in feeling (vibe) and appearance (cleanliness & organization)?
How does my work reflect me?
How do the actions I have taken reflect me?
How does my experience of yesterday reflect me?
How does my attitude about tomorrow reflect me today?
How am I thinking, feeling, acting and how does that reflect this perceivable moment right now?
Our perception and perspective begins with us, always.
We create our Life because we are Life!
We create our experience because we are the Creation!
We are Creation itself as it witnesses itself!
We are a unique and valued part of the whole of the Universe.
In the photo, I am holding myself while at a beautiful Women’s Retreat tucked away in the mountains with Lori Glazebrook & photographer Annabelle Denmark. I helped to cook the delicious Soul Food for this retreat. And for those of you that have visited my website or know me well, know that I LOVE to get my hands on food to infuse it and cook with LOVE. What a beautiful blessing to attend and share one of my passions!
The image of me is pretty telling. During the shoot, I naturally curled up in the dark corner and hugged myself tight. In this image, I feel my present-self whispering to my “inner child” – “It’s okay. You’re safe. You’re held. I love you.”
The last few weeks have been “turbulent” times for me you could say – as I have been navigating through family emergency, illness, nerve pain, unexpected & expected travel, workshops/classes/retreats (teaching & attending), and a lot of emotions along the way.
However, such is life. Our human existence is challenging, and it will always have those clearly challenging sections or bumps along the way.
Challenge is an invitation to grow.
Challenge is an invitation to check in.
Challenge is an invitation to feel.
I feel deeply within myself that there is a teaching in every experience, every emotion, every turbulent or every blissful time. Through LIVING, we learn about ourselves. Through EXPERIENCING, we open ourselves to receive guidance, insight, and teachings as we continue onward on the wild journey of life on Earth.
It has been a reoccurring theme for me to honor MY needs first…so that I may continue to serve, support, and love others. This has been a constant teaching, a constant “checking in”, a constant “What do I need?” as I’ve moved through the last few weeks.
My needs showed up such as:
driving a bit further to buy myself my organic groceries while traveling
saying “no” to a workshop I already signed up for
allowing myself to nap or rest more if needed
or simply holding myself (like in the portrait) during this cycle of healing and renewal.
I’ve learned over the years that even if Life appears as smooth sailing or seemingly “easy”, my path continues to unveil itself and spiral in a circular orientation. I have days or weeks where I am full of lifeforce, prana, or creative energy as I go about my daily tasks, teachings, healings, workouts, cooking, etc. This is the “outward” or “upward” time of my cycle or circular path. In opposition, I have days or weeks where I am drawing inward. During this time, I am needing holding, rest, rejuvenation, and additional support. Neither is better or worse than the other, and the timeline for each opposing cycle is unknown and different during every rotation.
You can observe this spiral in nature all around us…from as big as images of the universe to smaller images of hurricanes to as small as images of a seashell. Of course, there is a mathematical foundation to this characteristic of the Cosmos – it is called the Fibonacci Sequence, also known as the Golden Ratio.
But to me, I call it Nature’s Spiral.
I have integrated this teaching into a deeper level of my being recently. I “knew” this tendency about my path, but I was still holding onto a certain level of resistance for the “inward” or “downward” portion the spiral. I realized how beautiful, soft, and simple this time can be, and it doesn’t make it “less than” or “worse than” the opposition (even though society teaches us to push, grind, and force our way through).
I believe Nature’s Spiral occurs in all of us with different varying degrees and opposition, whether we are aware of it or not…
Try to soften your mind, open your heart, expand your ability to reflect and find out for yourself…
STEP ONE: Find or take a moment to pause, slow down, and reflect. This can be anywhere. Invite a few deep breaths in and out to enter the present moment. Once you feel ready, ask yourself “How am I feeling today”? Do I feel tired? Do I feel energized? Do I feel introspective, joyful, sad, carefree, depleted, tender, overwhelmed? If you could pick one emotion to describe how you are feeling, what would that be?
*This is a great practice to do for several days/weeks straight. It can be simple, and I promise will get easier as you practice. You may choose to record your answers in a journal to reflect on later.
STEP TWO: Inhale a lengthened low belly breath; this time, exhale and offer the breath out of your mouth. This breath can be however gentle or loud as necessary. Repeat this style of breathing, and notice until you feel your inner awareness shift down (out of your mind and into your Heart Center, or perhaps even lower into Belly Center). It is much easier to connect to the wisdom of your true essence through the body; additionally, be mindful that it is impossible to connect to your being if you are lost in your mind’s chatter (own it if you are!). Furthermore, once you are fully relaxed into your body, guided by your exhales – ask yourself “What do I need in this moment?” Not what your mind wants you to do; not what other people want you to do; not what your job wants you to do. What do YOU need?
*This need comes from the wisdom within the body or from the “Higher Self” if you will. Honor the answer you receive. Act on your need in the perfect time for you.
STEP THREE: Reflect on the last few weeks of your life (or your journal entries). What do you notice? What Wisdom is to be gained through reflecting on your own cycle? Is there some sort of pattern asking to be seen?
*Mentally reflect or write your insight down in your journal.
Please reach out with any comments or questions about your experience(s)! <3
Are you conscious of your ability to witness, contain, and harness the power that resides in YOU? The power that is the essence of creationary lifeforce itself. (Woah! ?)
Are you conscious of the very lifeforce that pulsates through your being at any given moment? Do you offer yourself time & space to connect to your OWN lifeforce?
The creative energy that fuels all life manifests in our own bodies as our breath, heartbeat, blood flow, a stream of thoughts, emotion, sensation, and more.
Do you revel in the sheer Aliveness that is YOU?
…. Or are you “sleeping” your way through *human* life? Are you on autopilot for most, if not all, of your “time” or days? Are you too distracted or restricted by the artificial rhythms placed in modern-day society (clock-time, schedules, technology) to feel gratitude for and connect to this miracle that is LIFE?
We, as humans, have a beautiful advantage in this life – we have the ability to be conscious of our own consciousness. This is probably why (even as a biproduct) we hold the status we do on Earth, at the top of the food chain. Essentially, we have the ability to be a part of the spirit of life as it flows through and within us just as much as we are able to witness the Aliveness pulsate from an objective view. We can, cohesively, experience the pulses of life as US (breath, heartbeat, thoughts, etc.), and, simultaneously, witness those pulses as they unfold (neutrally “watch” thoughts, emotions, sensations as they occur).
This requires us to be still enough to experience AND observe the subtle pulsations. As we practice releasing the restraints of the mind, the illusionary veil of separation and fear will eventually lift – we surrender into a “remembering” of the universal rhythm of life.
This connection to lifeforce occurs when we are fully present and immersed in the wonder of this moment. It is beyond minds ability to attach, avert, or judge – this connection is rooted in the true power of the body. Even if only for a moment or two, we can sense from deep within ourselves, the vastness of lifeforce. If you have a difficult time “sensing” this vastness – with enough stillness, you can surely feel your breath moving itself and your heart beating itself. Feel into the force that is behind the breath, behind the heartbeat.
We can also become conscious of the pulsations inside AND outside – pulsations of the Earth – driven by the same lifeforce.
You could call this connecting to the entire Web of Life – life inside our “vessels” (aka our bodies) & life outside our “vessels” – ignited & propelled by the same source.
It is sometimes easier to connect to Earth’s lifeforce first…
Contemplate being in nature – it is quite simple to feel enchanted there…
When immersed in the natural world, we observe & also rest as a part of the universal flow and vibration of life. We sync with the natural rhythm. We hear the sounds – wind as it blows the trees, animals shuffling or insects flying by, waves crashing, birds chirping. We feel the breeze on our skin or the toasty sun as it warms our body. We gaze upon nature beings interacting within the circle of life – in alignment with all of the other beings around. We smell the vital, pure air that is so deeply fresh. We taste our snacks as they bounce in our mouths, full of flavor – and for some reason, we are totally occupied by a state of wonder & gratitude for life.
The most direct way to connect with the lifeforce in your body is to connect with the Earth. The Earth and our Earth bodies are inseparable. Our body is a piece of the bigger Earth. We can view our inner world & our outer world as mirrors linked by the same force – of life. When we allow the natural rhythm of life to flow through & within us (instead of artificial rhythms) – we allow nature to do what it does best. We surrender to the universal flow of the Cosmos as it occurs within US.