Sunday, November 28, 2010

Wicca and Shamanism

Today's exercise questions your recent experiences that called you along your path. In the book, a shaman is described as "a spiritual leader who serves many important functions..." such as a "priest, a mystic...a counselor, an interpreter of spirits, a healer, and a magician." It also describes the madman. The madman is the one who cannot control his otherwordly experiences and stays out of the realm of reality.

What hallmarks of a shaman describes your own experiences?
When I was eight years old I had an interesting experience with my mother while we went out shopping. We were walking down a street to a store, and I was in my habit of not actually paying attention to where we were going. I was used to listening to the sounds of my mother's footsteps, and I would follow those while I would either watch my feet or look up at the sky. While I was in the middle of transitioning between looking at the sidewalk to the clouds, something caught my eye. I saw two men across the street, one old, bent over a cane, and a young man next to him. The elderly fellow looked just like your stereotypical grandfather, slightly hunched, brown sweater, kakhi pants, and loafers. The young man, however, looked like nothing I had ever seen before. He was incredibly tall, absolutely beautiful. His hair was blond, to his shoulders, and his eyes were a dark blue-gree, the color of an ocean. His outfit was crisp, as if pressed and just picked up from the cleaners, a spotless white in complete contrast to the dingy street. His good-looks weren't what caught me, though; he was glowing. It was as if sunbeams were radiating from him in every color imaginable. The rays were in pastels, similar to having light cast upon a while through a prism on a cloudy day. He smiled at me and waved. I waved back and looked around. I suddenly saw another one, similar to him, but with different features following a woman about my mom's age at the time. As the day progressed I continued to see these glowing people, but went home feeling confused after the shopping was done. A few days later, my family and I went to the mall. While my parents and siblings talked at the table, I noticed something different. I was still seeing "extra" people, but these people were dark, as if made of shadow. They seemed to be sucking the light into them. Looking at them made my eyes hurt, the black was so intense, a black that I could never create. It was a humanoid black hole. When I finally told my mom about it, she just hugged me and told me that I was just seeing the angels and demons that surround our world all the time. No matter where we are, we have angels around us, whether they be high or fallen. Since my mother wasn't worried about it, neither was I, so I went about my days, seeing these extra people behind everyday people. As I got older, I saw fewer and fewer of them. By the time I hit my teens (and severe depression) I stopped seeing these spirit creatures completely. These days, I catch a glimpse here and there, but I only feel them. The only time I am absolutely certain is when one of my daughters tugs at my sleeve to tell me there is someone looking at me, yet when I look for them, no one is there.

This is one of many examples of my life. I have so many. One of these days I'll talk about them all, but until then, feel free to ask me about any other experience, I may post about it. :)

In what ways are you the Shaman?
Growing up a I connected with spirit creatures a lot. They ranged from fae, to the dead, to even the souls of the living. If someone is close to me, I can sense them, even if I live hours away. My family is very spiritually connected, even though we have different religions. We cannot talk for days, and yet you may get a phone call out of the blue asking if you are all right. My close friends are like that, too. "Did something happen to you that made you upset around 2 this morning?" "Oh I just slammed my entire body into the floor after tripping over a chair, and the piano stand, and then the corner of the bed. No big deal." Another way is that I feel like a healer. I'm an avid pray-er. Whenever someone asks me for healing, it seems as if I can always get the job done within the week. People come to me for advice. I'm not sure why, but they just feel like the can and should. I've had more than one friend tell me I'll be a high priestess one day. One has been saying it for ten years! But for the most part, as a leader, I love to teach, which I guess fits in that category, too.

In what ways are you the Madman?
In my severe depressive episodes, I disconnect with reality. I have a hard time staying grounded and have been known to hallucinate for long periods of time. My mind plays tricks on me and creates memories of events that never occured. Deep inside I feel like they are true, I lived them, but in all honesty, I know they never did.

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Natural Sacred Energies

Within us we all have a natural life force, a sacred energy that courses through our veins. The exercise for today was to get in touch with those energies. To do so I had to relax my entire body, ignoring sounds and thoughts. If thoughts came across my mind, I was to see them only with mild curiosity and notice what those thoughts would do to the muscles of my body but delve no further. Once I was fully relaxed I then channeled my life force starting at the solar plexus. Once I found it, I worked my way up to my chest, then down to my hips and legs, to the soles of my feet and the tips of my toes. I continued upward and out, to my shoulders and through my arms, to the tips of my fingers, until finally I finished by touching it through my neck, face, and head. By the end of the exercise, after about 7 minutes, I was feeling tingly all over. My whole body felt whole, and every inch of my body was humming. You know the feeling you get after a really big, good stretch? That's how I felt. My body felt great, and what pleased me was that none of it had felt cut off. The energies within me work in harmony, leaving everything in unison, making it work in ease.

I need to do this more often. :)