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If you are like me it’s almost if no amount of shielding will filter out seasonal shifts or big events like the recent earthquake in Japan. I know. I know, the media can blow anything up and out to ever heightening levels of hype, gloom, and doom but the energy I am really speaking about is the back lash of sorrow, suffering, and pain that comes from such a disaster.

This doesn’t make for good spiritual or energetic work.

I am reminded this morning that someone like myself, a healer among other things, should take the time to work out these energies from my system and to do my part in easing the suffering. I believe we can and do have an effect on the global consciousness by shifting our own.

This week we do not have a “Tarot Weekly,” as is the norm because I’ve been told that the greater path is in helping to shift some of this energy released into the world. Saturday I posted to the Journey Lifencompass fan page on Facebook about an encounter on the street. Someone, who I know around downtown LA was walking by just as I stepped out of the office at the lofts. I had woke at 3:50 am that day and could not seem to clear myself from Friday’s earthquake and Tsunami, imagining, feeling, wondering about all of those people, and their lives. I stepped out the door as this man I know walked by and he said, in short, “You are a  Light Worker.”

I wrote that day, “No accidents. 12 million people in a city and I walk out the door of the El Dorado Lofts to bump into a man who tells me I am a light worker, that we raise our consciousness to a higher vibration. Each of us that does, raises it a little for everyone else. *warm* love* lifted. The universe is reciprocal. ;)”

Then

“levels of consciousness are: shame, guilt, apathy, grief, fear, desire, anger, pride, courage, neutrality, willingness, acceptance, reason, love, joy, peace, enlightenment.”

I am reminded of my lovely friend  Jamie, and a conversation we had about the events just after the earthquake in Haiti, and how these types of disasters release so much into the psychic mind of the global consciousness. How it is up to us to bring the lost through the pain to release. The role of the Witch, the walker between worlds, the priest or priests. In an age of Aquarian enlightenment potential, that means all of us as the One of the Age of Pisces moves into the Many of the Collective Age of Aquarius.

So… here are my thoughts and some of the guidance I have been given that has worked for me in this time.

Send healing, and send love, in addition to whatever monetary support you can. Our consciousness needs the right vehicle for the sending so what I look for is the right vibration / frame of mind that suits the clearest purpose. My healing practice allows for me to enter a clear state where the energy passes through me. Seeking a place where you are clear is important. We do not want to sit within the fear, anger, or denser emotional vehicles when communicating our prayers, and healing.

This empowers the pain by reinforcing it.

The Tarot Weekly last week guided us to seek solace in our center.

In Strength, this week, I would like to see you finding sustenance in yoursource(s) through activities that bring you to the place where that feeling, the vibration, of your solace is resonating like a song, in every part of your body. Forget the astrology, the details, the minutia and immerse in that at the start of the week.

Let that inner feeling be a wind to your sails, let them be full as you travel forward through the next seven days.

That is the sweet spot for any intention work on healing or aid this week. From that place of retreat that leads us to our center, our magickal space, we work in the world on these issues.

Observe your mental state while working with others, as you move through the world. We are healers! We don’t want to get caught up in emotional dramas caused by stresses that many of the people around us are not aware of. Many people often react completely unconsciously and channel the stresses of their life and the world through them and into the people around them. They are still in the experience of learning at this level.

When I move into my day I try to be transparent to this energy. As my encounter on Saturday reminded me, some of the newer practices I am learning through the Awaken Your Light Body Course, which really affirmed the Hermetic Principles, specifically the Principles of Mentalism, Rhythm, and the Principle of Cause and Effect. (Full copy here at The Kybalion).

My practice in short is to resonate with the area that needs healing or more light, aid, or love. You can use your own distance healing practice. We do not connect to it, we become aware of it, as we are aware of our own self and we begin in that place to shift the energy to a lighter vibration.

Lastly, be aware of how much information you are taking in about events that are causing suffering. Even if the news is playing in the background your mind is still taking it in. This is the easiest way I am inundated with the energy. Media communicates the energy to bigger and bigger sensations. Our eyes and ears can be overwhelmed from all the news, conversations, blogs…

Coming from the place of what we can do. Turning off the conversation, the television, and walking away from the news networks online that trumpet a 24 hour channel of “The Disaster” can help!

We all have different ways of handling the situations in our life, great or small. This is one way, my way, that I highlight for you.

Protect yourself.

If you would like more information on being transparent, education on how to shift your own energy, or just need a consultation on other matters, please contact me to schedule an appointment. You can send me an email on my contact page, here).

Be well,

– –

Scott K Smith
http://lifencompass.com
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Food for thought this morning. Among the many great speaks at Ted.com.

 

The thesaurus might equate “disabled” with synonyms like “useless” and “mutilated,” but ground-breaking runner Aimee Mullins is out to redefine the word. Defying these associations, she shows how adversity — in her case, being born without shinbones — actually opens the door for human potential.

About Aimee Mullins

A record-breaker at the Paralympic Games in 1996, Aimee Mullins has built a career as a model, actor and activist for women, sports and the next generation of prosthetics. Full bio and more links

 

– –

Scott K Smith
http://lifencompass.com
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Welcome to The Journey, Lifencompass.

I’ve savored some ideas for a while about events that have taken place since about mid-December. This by no means a swift spit of writing and by the time this has come to you on the web, via RSS or right to your Facebook page I’ll have spent a good deal of time fleshing and massaging out these thoughts. This Journey Journal is called Fear, light, and healing, because it covers a period of transition and many moments over the last 6 or 8 weeks that are nothing short of transformational.

Between the message of the Tarot Weekly and watching events unfold around me within my circle, on the net, and in the world, I know I am not alone in this shift. I do wonder about the people who are consciously experiencing it. I mean to say, why is it a shared experience with some, even new people who comment, or that I meet, but not others? Well that is part of the exploration I suppose.

There is a bit of hesitation as I write this post. I have a deep intuition that not all should be, or can be shared, and so I’ve had to edit certain experiences to keep the integrity of the telling without spilling every single detail. I think that certain folks might find the details of the journey entirely in the realm of high fantasy, but that’s for them and this is me. This is my journey.

Makes me wonder about past readings (psychic) by many of the great women in my life who steered me to write, and not to speak…

The title of this post becomes my topics.

Fear

 

“When all’s said and done, all roads lead to the same end. So it’s not so much which road you take, as how you take it.” ~Charles de Lint


We’re in the midst of an awakening consciousness. I know I am, I believe you are, I can see that Egypt, indeed, is a vortex of a change, of ideas and thinking. It is happening now. I’ve been hesitant to write about this new birth partly because there is a voice inside of my heart that would only want to give to that birth and not those draconian regimes that would seek to suppress change, transformation, and light. Light of life. Light of consciousness. Light at the end of a long tunnel that is finally being reached. For the freedoms that people strive for. Freedoms we often don’t really respect or understand here in America.

They are fighting against the inhumanity of Autocratic power. Irregardless of his, President Hosni Mubarak, motives said or imagined, when all the power is in the hands of one or a few, it is not shared. It is not equal in my eyes. This is a macro-cosmic example of several things, political and spiritual. I’m talking about Saturn in Retrograde, in the sign of Libra. Balance. Fairness. Within the restrictive confines of Saturn’s Rings, once protective, once home, now begins the struggle for greater quality of life.

Please understand that this is a momentous event. What is happening now is this country is amazing but look over there at Egypt… and maybe the Muslim world! We are witnessing, and therefore connected to revolution. I do not mean, in any way shape or form, to dumb down or reduce what is happening over there, but “over there” in our day and age has almost become, right next door. This is a powerful, violent, change. My heart is with the people who support a people empowered government. No church. No dictator. Democracy? Freedom of choice. Liberty to choose. I hope that they grow this way in strength and as peaceful as possible.

I can’t think of many revolutions that have.

That said…

I’m personally also talking about the recent shifts. Some of you feel them. They’ve come up and open since sometime around December, near the Solstice, and increasing with intensity. The subtle and refined is open for the sensitive in new ways. I can honestly look back as early as October of 2010 and see the thinning points of high energy and spiritual gateways as points of acceleration. I believe that my friend “E” said that “the windows were opening and at a faster rate, so that we are now living in “real time.” I get that.

In more physical matters it feels to me as if the very elements of life have changed and only some people seem to notice.

Personally, my little microcosm of creation that I experience, I have begun my own birthing process. The world is changing. I am changing. I am changing. The world is changing.

She changes everything she touches
And everything she touches changes
Changes; Touches;
Touches; Changes

~Starhawk

 

Light

I’ve started something new and in that newness I’ve met my own prejudices against parts of myself…

Last year, in December *smile* I felt the wave begin to rise within me, a flow I watched in the world around me. I made two commitments. One to start the last leg of my Journey with the Temple of Witchcraft series, Christopher Penczak, The Living Temple of Witchcraft. I also, spurred by some lightening bolt, wrote into Luminessence and started the Awaken Your Light Body (which I will call AYLB) course by Sanaya Roman and Duane Packard; Or more exactly, Orin and Daben.

You may think that these are divergent teachings but at this point in the Living Temple series I’m doing more inner alchemy work than comparative study of philosophy… Together they actually work quite well. Witchcraft being the foundation of my practice, new energies and studies that accelerate my energetic field feel quit natural to me. It’s integration.

I said that I had met prejudices tho, didn’t I?

Yes, as I got into the AYLB and I found that the use of the word “light” made me think of what a Druid I once knew called (unedited), “Mambe Pamby White Light Nazi’s.” The use of the word light and my impression from certain factions within society that use it so much that it drove me away from the movement around it. Light. Light-Light. White light. etc. etc. etc.

Not very Witchy of me.

Then as I relaxed into the learning I began to explore what this light, or energy, really is. Wow. I can even surprise myself. Light isn’t the blinding white brilliance that was on every new age movement sticker or advertisement all through the 1990’s. No it was the force that  moves. A light that awakens. A power that loves. A wisdom that shines. It comes in  many colors and vibrations… “Wait. I know this.” What  I thought just got in the way.

Their process is also a quickening. You can study at your own pace as they are audio files (disc and tape versions are still available) and you move with the attunements at your pace. My pace, I felt was relatively leisurely but the transmission of energy from the channeled beings Orin and Daben awaken the light body. It’s different, chakras are a part of it but the body of light they build is something new, familiar and yet alien, and the transmissions are lightening fast.

As I said, I surprised myself. I even had a freak out, which a few people know about as I consulted with some trusted sources. In short what I experienced was fear, as I changed rather abruptly, and then the “wow-we” opening that continually brings a sense of… I don’t know any other word for it but bliss, when I’m truly in it.

I’m still within that process. I have my tea, my oil, meditation, friends and presence to see my through this passage. It’s enlightening, it really is. The world is a different place.

Spirituality means waking up. Most people, even though they don’t know it, are asleep. They’re born asleep, they live asleep, they marry in their sleep, they breed children in their sleep, they die in their sleep without ever waking up. They never understand the loveliness and the beauty of this thing that we call human existence. You know — all mystics — Catholic, Christian, non-Christian, no matter what their theology, no matter what their religion — are unanimous on one thing: that all is well, all is well. Though everything is a mess, all is well. Strange paradox, to be sure. But, tragically, most people never get to see that all is well because they are asleep. They are having a nightmare.

As quoted in Approaching God : How to Pray (1995) by Steve Brown, p. 94 ~Anthony De Mello

Healing

Much of what changed I did experience in my day-to-day life. I came to a point where I dramatically broke down and I heard again and again the words, shaman’s death. This isn’t to say I am a shaman, and nor am I trying to illustrate some specialness about me. I’ve read a few things on the interwebs, personal accounts, and I just don’t have time for that ego association. I’m in it. If you know me, then you know what it is. If you have gone through it, then you also know what it is. As I posted on Facebook the other day, some  things cannot be expressed, they can only be experienced.

I can tell you about some of those changes.

The AYLB course popped my crown through the birthing channel and I’m not even 1/2 way through. I’m experiencing simple things like noticing the color, flavor, warmth, and feeling of most “light” around me, or sensing the subtle emotions that play through a conversation. My senses feel heightened.

In healing and intuiting I found some great changes. From my perspective I do not feel locked-into (what’s the word here..?) “drama.” I don’t know if that’s what I want to call it but I just can’t seem to respond in the way that some folks would like me to. I’m not asking to be tested (tee-hee!) but there have been some curious expressions as the rise that was expected did not follow.

Healing tho, that is different.

I want to say that there has been hesitation in the past around healing scenarios, although at any given time I would have said I was confident in my trust of the Gods and the Great Spirit but I can see now how I wasn’t, exactly. It’s like the difference between faith and knowing, or belief and trust. There was a moment when I sat here at my desk and I went through a meditation and the energy around me increased. There was something here that has always been with me… and now it is not.

In that moment I consciously affirmed to let it go, I realized it’s purpose and how it had helped me, but it wasn’t Master material and didn’t serve me any longer. Like a paper in a flame, it burned away. It wasn’t very dramatic. It passed that easily but once it had I was different.

Our last healing circle was pretty amazing for me. I know the boys got something out of it but I felt like that [early mentioned] hesitation was just gone. I was passing the energy almost playfully at times with a new sense of trust and knowing. This throws a ball at my teaching process, my materials, everything and I’m going to have to complete these journey’s to come to the place where I am ready to teach again.

Although that could be me just dropping blibbidy-blah and the Life Force Energy could call and I would come to the occasion. 🙂 In a place of trust I listen, and the way is known.

Fear. Light. Healing.

So this becomes the real process. Broken down it’s digestible, as a whole it can feel like a mess. We suffer fear, we wake up, and healing begins. This seems to be the phases that I have experienced and this is where I am now.

I have experienced physical healing before. I have seen things I could only call miraculous as people on the brink bounce back, and ladies with fractures stand up and walk in a healing situation but this was wellness made on a whole new level for me. It’s completion. It is drawing a new circle, spiraling wide, and exploring life all over again.

I think that makes me a born again Witch. Ha. Ha! Ha.

I can only hope that all of those going through a process like this personally or socially open up to the help that is really there for us if we reach out to it. You can call it higher ideas, angelic, god, goddess, whatever you want, but it’s there and in my experience when you trust it, when you open up to that inner reflection of spirit that is reaching back to you like the Creation of Adam on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, that things can and do change.

If you can’t find it within you…

“And you who seek to know Me, know that the seeking and yearning will avail you not, unless you know the Mystery: for if that which you seek, you find not within yourself, you will never find it without.

For behold, I have been with you from the beginning, and I am That which is attained at the end of desire.”

~Doreen Valiente.


I am in the midst of my awakening -Yay me!- and having what my friend Chati calls, “the delicious exchanges of energy.”

Yes. Yes I am.

Be well,

– –

Scott K Smith
http://lifencompass.com
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I was going to wait until I finished this book before I posted a review but I learned that Hank Wesselman will be at the Conscious Life Expo in Los Angeles this month and I had to get this out to share my excitement at meeting the author in the near future.

The Bowl of Light: Ancestral Wisdom from a Hawaiian Shaman is a story, retelling the events around Hank’s meeting and growing friendship with Kahuna elder, Hale Makua. Interestingly enough I happen to have a friend who I have in the past gone to for information about her Hawaiian culture and spiritual traditions. Being a granddaughter of a spiritual elder from the islands I feel she’s my “go-to girl” for this type of spiritual information. I had to talk to her about it because, interestingly enough, her Grandfather is mentioned in the book.

So… the two of us are going to the event on Monday, February 14th at the Hilton Los Angeles: Spirit Medicine: An Overview Of Shamanic Healing. That hyperlink should take you to the events page, it’s roughly a 2 1/2 gathering and talk about healing.

Course Description

Join Hank as he examines the three classic causes of illness and the four levels of Shamanic healing and explores the nature of health and illness from the perspective of some of the Earth’s indigenous people. You will learn ancient, time-tested ways of entering the Shamanic state of consciousness where you can connect with your spirit helpers and healing masters and learn how to work with them in your personal place of power and healing in the inner worlds.

From the Conscious Life Expo:

In the Western world today, interest in complementary and alternative therapies is on the rise, and increasing numbers of health care practitioners and laypersons alike are discovering the ease with which the healing modalities developed by the traditional tribal shamans and medicine makers can be learned and practiced. In this workshop, we examine the nature of health, illness and healing from the cross-cultural perspective of the indigenous peoples. This experiential event includes an overview of the three classic causes of illness and the four traditional levels of healing and concludes with a powerful healing ritual.

Note: Please bring hand drums and rattles (if you have them), a notebook, a bandana or eyeshade and a light blanket.

I will be there. I have purchased my ticket as of this morning. If you feel the call, come on out, I’ll see you there!

Now where was I? Oh… right. The book!

I know you know the feeling, reading something that feels right. The Bowl of Light has taken me on an honest journey through the telling of Hank’s meeting with Hale Makua. There are points within the book such as prayers, and answers to, Pele that have caused me to smile and nod. I’m familiar with my spirit connections, these things I understand because I have them. Then there are other tellings -mind you never too much, breaking tradition or revealing that which should not be given away- such as the understanding of what the bowl of light IS, in the Hawaiian tradition, and many other examples that connect the dots [in my head] to other mystical / tribal traditions.

I’m an avid book reader so my “for instances” can contain some cross-pollination between books. I think that’s OK seeing how the references connect.

For instance…

Christopher Penczak, in his latest book by Copper Cauldron Publishing called The Three Rays of Witchcraft brings up into the light the Three Cauldron’s, or foundations, of Awen. This book is a whole review in and of itself but I am still working on some of the advanced exercises contained within the Three Rays of Witchcraft, but I need time to process and digest those. In short, awesome, but now, my point.

The three Cauldrons as Christopher illustrates, are spiritual vessels within the body at the head, the  heart, and the belly. In his instruction with this Inner Alchemy we are filling up and balancing these cauldrons with energy, light. They are balanced by rays, the three rays in fact, and each is a descent of Power, Love and Wisdom, thus the title of the book. What I found interesting as I read there in the working of the cauldrons is a message that I have heard many times over. To channel, one must make the vessel clear, ready to pass the energy with clarity. One of my first references was Frank Fool’s Crow, and his instruction on clearing the body as a vessel for Wanken to heal, “we must make ourselves like hollow bones.”

This message I found in the Bowl of Light. I asked my friend about her grandfathers connection within the story and then excitedly invited her to the event with Hank Wesselman. She  responded enthusiastically describing the spirituality, as Makua had taught Hank, as I read, of the bowl of light…

“At twilight, Makua got up, using his walking stick for stability, and lurched over to his truck to reach for something in the bed behind the cab. He returned to the table under the shelter with a large pu’olo, a ti-leaf bundle that was wrapped  and tied in the traditional style. He presented it to Jill and me with a grin and the simple word makana – ‘gift.’

We eyed the large, leafy bundle with anticipation for several long moments, savoring this time in the dying light of the last day of the year. Then we opened it excitedly and found within a beautiful yet simple wooden bowl made in the Hawaiian style and shaped like the lower half of a gourd.

‘This is your bowl of light,’ intoned the kahuna with a warm smile, ‘the light that was a gift from you ‘Aumakua, your immortal spiritual soul that divided itself before you were born. Each of us comes into the world from the great beyond with our seed of light. This light nourishes us and sustains us as we pass through life-but as we grow in experience and wisom, things happen.

‘Sometimes we lie. Sometimes we steal, and sometimes we injure others through our thoughts, our actions, or our words. When we step into the negative polarity, it is as though we put a stone in our bowl, and some of our light goes out. Slowly through time, our bowl of light fills up with stones, and our light dims until it is nearly gone.’

Makua stopped and looked at us with great seriousness. ‘The great problem in the world today is that the whole show is being run by individuals whose bowls of light are filled with stones. With few exceptions…

(later)

‘Hopefully, we wake up to what is going on and discover what we are doing.’ The elder paused dramatically, his expressive dark eyes luminous. ‘At that moment, we become aware that our bowl of light is almost filled with stones and there is almost no light shining forth. And you know what we do then?’ Makua paused and his gazed turned serious. Jill and I hung on every word.

Gently he took the wooden bowl from me and turned it over, shaking it vigorously. ‘We simply dump it out!’ A huge roar of laughter burst forth from all of us…”

The Bowl of Light: Ancestral Wisdom from a Hawaiian Shaman, Hank Wesselman, PhD, Chapter 3, pg 47-48.

There is a lot more to this book. Talks about mana, illuminations on the Spiritual Warrior society, and interesting thoughts on polarity and spiritual purpose. It is a gem. More than the overwritten “how to” book. This is good storytelling containing seeds of light for your own “bowl” or cauldron.

I’m going to finish up the stories soon. I’d like to recommend this book to the spiritual seeker or those interested in getting more than just an anthropological perspective on Hawaiian spirituality. It isn’t taken without permission, it has been given and with respect, retold and passed along in a way that I think the spirit of Mauka, and many other ancestors would be pleased.

The Bowl of Light has not yet been released. I’ve been blessed with an advance copy. You will be able to pick up your own copy soon.

The Bowl of Light: Ancestral Wisdom from a Hawaiian Shaman
May 1, 2011
Paperback / BK01886 / 284 pp

ISBN: 978-1-60407-430-7
eBook ISBN: 978-1-60407-455-0
UPC: 600835-188685
US $16.95
Spirituality/Shamanism
World

Synopsis: An intimate view into the mind of an authentic Hawaiian kahuna elder—with shamanic insights for connecting with the wisdom of our ancestors and our own divine nature.

I hope this finds you well.

– –

Scott K Smith
http://lifencompass.com
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Hello. Hello!

Yes I finally did it, I opened the doors to Lifencompass / my home and started a healing share. I began by calling it a Reiki Share but I feel that there are just too many great healing modalities that work well together to limit it to Reiki alone. Besides the work “reiki” is just to limiting lately. There is so much more to it than the “#hashtag” “#Reiki” has become. Today, with a few healers I have worked with over the years, we draw together a start, a circle of healing in Downtown LA. And in the case of anyone thinking, Um why didn’t you call me? I started with students and healers I have established a working relationship with, and those that arrived become what I hope is the seed.

I’m excited!

The energy of the house, that sits within a little healing grid, has changed already and a lot has come in and through in preparation. I am REALLY happy with this. My life, my changes, and my path feel… on point.

So, in the future I’m looking at expanding the circle and opening up the healing practice again, and, and, and, moving forward in this new direction. It’s time. I’m glad you have walked along with me. Anticipate new things, maybe like once a month. Expect invitations.

For updates you can add me as a friend on Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/lifencompass

and Please give me a *like* at The Journey / Lifencompass @ Facebook as well!

http://www.facebook.com/pages/THE-JOURNEY-LIFENCOMPASS/142491652427959

 

🙂

Be well,

– –

Scott K Smith
http://lifencompass.com
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Hey…

Silly me, I just realized I was on vacation. In my mind I was thinking I still had a week to go but in fact, I’m free of all mundane obligations to my real estate position. That leaves time for other things and I would love to devote some of that time to folks who were in need of some healing or face time for guidance, Essential Oils, or what not.

Please contact me if you are in or going to be around the area. I will be gone for the actual “Christmas Holiday” DAY but pretty much home-centric for the rest of the month, including New Years which I will spend with my lovely friends at Santee Court.

Send me an email or give a poke or gab on facebook and I’ll respond as soon as humanly possible.

Hoping you have weathered this retrograde and the holiday’s.

– –

I hope this finds you well,

Scott K Smith
http://lifencompass.com

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If you are just joining me in these posts you can catch up on the chapter-by-chapter book review of Awakening to the spirit world through these posts:

Okay. I know. It’s been awhile but if you have followed along with me at The Journey, you know I’ve been a busy little bee, with some events and other things happening.

As promised I’m back to complete my thoughts (review) on Awakening to the Spirit World: The Shamanic Path of Direct Revelation.

You may be expecting three more blog excerpts but I’m going to blend these last three chapters together into one. You see, much like the chapters on Death (previous entries) there is a similar  message in these last three chapters. It makes sense then to bring them together and close with some last thoughts here.

Community. Transformation. The Return of the Shaman

We return to the last three chapters of Awakening to Shamanism, like many inward journeys, the seeker lead back out through chapters on Community, Transforming Communities, and a final Chapter called The Return of the Shaman.

An Altay shaman beating a gong. Music was one ...

Image via Wikipedia

Clearly there is a connection between our self, our work, and the communities we live in. Naturally there is an exchange… As I believe, when we as people shift our consciousness there is a 100th Monkey Effect (I recognize that this is a considered “discredited” idea scientifically, but in Magickal work, I don’t. So I will use it). Enough magick and energy are infused in an area, it’s going to be changed. Magick is affecting consciousness, energy / vibration, matter composed of energy, etc, etc, etc.

“Shamanism”, or more closely put for me “Magick” is most effective when it is integrated into our core perceptions. Meaning, if it’s not considered in your day-to-day moments, I don’t know that you will find it always works. By “works” I mean that you actually experience it as a living thing, more than just imagined things from candles and such.

Community doesn’t always mean forming a circle and banging drums, chanting, preaching, or selling your wares. Community, I think, should probably mean that your (in this instance) “Shamanic Practice” could be best used in your own personal life, in the relationships that you have most immediately around you. Family, friends, etc. I’m not saying that one can’t form a drum circle or dreaming group, but as I remember I often saw a confusion between the two. A “Do as I say, not as I do” person or group who rattled and banged their spiritual tools, then went home and it was over.

Magick isn’t Church, it happens with every breath, it applies to the most mundane. Natural. Living. Now. In this circle.

In Chapter 13 we discuss a little bit more than that, looking for the Shaman in modern society. Who is he or she? The Minister? The Physician? Politicians? How about Visionaries like Joseph Campbell?  I think that the important question is, who are our modern functionaries through the process of living and are they qualified to help us through our passages? Moreover, what are they helping to facilitate? Is it a functional change or simply the advancement of a metaphor-to-be-taken-literally?

Okay. Maybe that’s my question. I’ve never fully been a part of the mainstream choices: Church. Sports. Pop. Patriotism. I’ve found I fit into the more sub-culture and fringe… which happened to become more mainstream. It seems like the integration of these so-called “New Age” things becomes almost overwhelming (but pleasant) when you can speak and not feel like you’ll be stoned.

Joseph Campbell

Image via Wikipedia

Anyway, my point, and I think that of the authors, is the question of who are our visionaries and how do we interact with our community; and in our interaction the learning of who and what are community spirit actually is.

Recognizing and honoring our interconnected nature comes from participating in life, and with those we surround ourselves with both physically and spiritually. This is the place of healing, and transformation in our self and our community when we bring it into our conscious, recognized life. We are not alone in our search for belonging or our quest for a place, in taking our journey into the realm of the day-to-day, we cut a door for connection to happen to some of our core hopes, fears, passions, and beliefs, creating connections with those forces that allow and understand our desire.

Sandra Ingerman writes:

“When I first started performing healing work with individuals in Santa Fe, I always knew if I was going to be working with an Anglo or a Native American by how many cars  I heard turning into my driveway. Whenever Native American’s came to  see me they brought their children, spouses, loved ones, and even their dogs. It was always a bit challenging forme to have a dog licking my face or a child jumping on my stomach while I was journeying for my client. But there was something special and sacred about this experience.

(then)

“…I have found over my years of practice that by having a client bring one or more support people to the session, the effect of the healing is long-lasting, for the client then has someone who was present during the healing ritual who they can continue to talk to about the experience.

(later)

In today’s world, a powerful and pervasive cause of illness  can be found in intense and prolonged feelings of isolation. Many people don’t know who they are, where they belong, or what unique gifts and strengths they have to share in their community. These feelings of alienation are unique to Western people. [I call this generalization but that’s me ~Scott] They simply do not exist in tribal societies in which every individual belongs in perpetuity to the tribal whole. “

Sandra and Hank then guide us through some scenario’s like “Healing Challenges Within Families“, including an exercise for seeking identity in healing, and our perceptions of those who are sick. They talk about the environment and sharing an ecological responsibility and move into our role as (becoming) a visionary within your community. Sandra and Hank write about forming a circle and the collective dream of a tribe and a people, that takes us into the next chapters, The Transformational Community and the Return of the Shaman.

I don’t want to gloss over these things but it’s hard not to write a novela here because we begin to discuss topics like Indigenous Prophecy and the Cycle of Ages.

I think that if you were to dedicate yourself to the suggestions and ideas in this book as a map for understanding our self, and discovering what our natural place / calling is in the world, you would be happy. The first chapters open us to the calling, the inner chapters give us the framework to create the experience of the Modern Shaman, and the last chapters bring us to our potential roles in the community and the World, which feels to be on the edge of something vastly transformative.

Joseph Campbell in the Masks of Eternity concludes with the necessity of the changing myths, of what they will become, of how they will transform our society in ways that we cannot imagine. Sandra and Hank talk about the return of primordial spirituality. Indigenous Prophecy. The Sioux and the Hindu cultures speak of the cycles of ages and the four-legged bull (buffalo) which is now standing on it’s last leg. The Maya spoke of 2012, taken up by recent “New Age” folks, Earth Birthers, and others. The climate has changed…

I don’t necessarily believe in prophecy as in I think it will occur, because I (personally) think that we collectively help to create them through our insistence in the outcome. Maybe the thought that births the result of the prophecy to fulfillment is necessary to create the change. I’d just hope that people would like something aside from a disaster to be transformed… yet that seems to be the nature of all prophecy. Death and rebirth. It doesn’t have to mean, mythologically speaking, that is / should be a literal event.

Whatever our coming times are to be, global warming, or White Buffalo Woman come again singing, I feel that we are in an age of change and it is important to have an understanding of our place within the natural world. Who are we and how are we connected becomes, how am I a part of this moment I am in and what can I do to help heal, balance, speed up, change.

I think it should be interesting. I’ve always thought that maybe it was a shift in consciousness. That maybe one person doing, becomes some people doing until the shift of energy is as natural as a hundredth monkey learning to wash a yam in the river because the many have embraced the idea into the social consciousness. The passage of ideas, the deepening of the spiritual awareness, which is our natural, normal, and healthy awareness of the world and all things in it, through a period of transition, transformation, and rebirth. If it were a song it would start with a sound of pain or bliss: This is wrong, I must change. That is beautiful, I must be there. Following our bliss is centering in who we are and from that place then discovering how what we are does something good, it is more than nature, it is innately human, it is our moment of becoming.

What if we find that we are all in a collective moment of becoming? What if it is our collective bliss or calling. What if prophecy is but poetry, dancing around the truth of our evolution… or death and rebirth?

I acknowledge that this is my part of the experience, my lens of practice, my metaphysical interaction with life and the world. Maybe it’s my message to me, connected to you, to life, an AUM moment of realization. Being alive. Shamanism like many things (I think) can be applicable because it also can be practical, and practical spiritual connections to the world are important. Metaphor’s and prophecy should connect us to the meaning of the now, expand our awareness, deepen our connections to life. Though some parts of Magickal practice do take us into other states of consciousness it is important to recognize (IMO) this truth that it should apply to our living, our love, our passages, and I think that in essence that is what Awakening to the Spirit World: The Shamanic Path of Direct Revelation is teaching.

I thank Sandra Ingerman, Hank Wesselman, Carol Proudfoot-Edgar, Tom Cowan, Jose Stevens, Alberto Villodo, Fools Crow, Black Elk, Merlin, and all the other seekers, Shamans, Witches, and Spiritual doer’s past, present, and future for taking the time to live the life of their calling. We all are human, imperfectly-perfect natural beings seeing into the great unknown and traveling paths to seek and bring back that which can help us all collectively.

Find your path to direct revelation. Reach into your inner being. Spend time in your bliss, your calling, your authentic, magickal self and bring back the gifts that you have. They are needed more than you know.

In love.

– – –
Be well,

Scott K Smith
http://lifencompass.com

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Cover of "The Temple of Shamanic Witchcra...

Cover via Amazon

Welcome back. I’ve been away. I know but the recent art work and show left me a little beat and in need of some recuperation. I owe you a couple of chapter reviews from Awakening to the Spirit World, and I’ve been itching to post something else. This post on Journey Work.

It’s not ABC witchcraft.

This particular post should fall under the Journal category as I’m really doing my best to illustrate the experience without being too much of an editor, protecting privacy issues and attempting to cover a wide swath of the last month and half of meditation and magickal work.  Bear with me.

GRAARR!

I mentioned earlier that I was interested in practicing a few things before I moved into my third attunement (Water) via the Temple of Witchcraft series, drawing in bits of things that felt left out in my own spiritual / magickal path.

In Lesson Three: The Underworld Path, I found very interesting and helpful exercise that brought me back to some core intuitions about how I deal with dense or heavy energies: Underworld Offering. I am familiar with this type of “energy eating” from other traditions, specifically working with Maria Yraceburu (Earth Wisdom) way back when I was exploring other spiritual practices. Much of that work involved Snake Medicine and many of my dream-experiences explored shapeshifting, shedding, and consuming poisons, transforming them into medicine.

When I was younger in my experience I would have dreams of chases. Things, gargoyles, bees, people who wanted to capture me. These were reflective of my life. It was trying. As are many lives. I learned in life to take the negative and transform it into something empowering. I don’t know how I did it, maybe it was something in the early study of metaphysics or Witchcraft, but it came through in dreams and subconscious tugs, urges, and intuitions. Through these dreams I learned to shift the energy by taking it into me and transforming it. An old practice.

Reading through The Temple of Shamanic Witchcraft I came across an exercise that has become one of my new favorite tools in grounding denser energies while filtering out the refined energy for use. The denser energies are grounded down through a stone, a link to a place that I have created in the underworld. There they are recycled. The lighter energies remain and are put back out into the world. This practice is called Underworld Offering. (TOSW, Lesson Three, Exercise 14, page 179. Christopher Penczak).

Christopher writes,

“There are three main ways to release your heavy, dense energy to the Underworld. The first is simply through intent, much like grounding or earthing the energy after a ritual. you can do this by making contact with the ground itself, by kneeling on the ground and pressing your hands into it. You can also funnel the energy into the ground through as staff or sword, or simply will in there through your raised hands in a standing position (OTOW, Chapter 11). You can do the tree breathing meditation (exercise 6) and focus exclusively on the roots. As you ground your energy, simply use your will, and intend  to release all heavy energy through your roots into th earth and then the Underworld.

(Later)

The thrid technique is to create a heavy energy eater. For this magickal device, you will need a stone of considerable size. Mine is a very large quartz-crystal point, the size of a newborn child. It doesn’t have to be that big, or made of quartz, but it should be a fairly large, dense stone. It is not something you will carry around with you…”

I chose the selenite piece that I had previously used to cycle dense energy while working at my office job (in the past) and used it as my link to a cleansing space I had found in my journey work. Let me explain.

My most recent mediations have been a series of psychic body building, traveling into the lower and upper worlds to create connections to spiritual and magickal archetypes and helping spirits. In the lower world we have our animal helpers, ancestor spirits, dark gods, and shadow forms of the lower self. There I found  my Underworld “me” and.

In the upper world are the sky world deities and spiritual/archetypal beings, or higher self. The Upper World “me”. I spent some good amount of time breathing into and from these beings to myself here, in the middle world, allowing my consciousness to exist in three worlds at once, as one. It’s powerful fun stuff, and not without some enlightening thoughts and experiences.

These exercises were the techicolor sign posts of study in my mind and spending time on this type of exploration. I feel that we don’t really have to spend the time asking why as the answer soon becomes apparent to the seeker. I’ll get to that.

I combined two other exercises, Eating Heavy Energy (exercise 9), and Earth Mother Journey (exercise 10)  into what I beginning to understand is a perfect technique. Eating Heavy Energy brought my awareness to the place in my energy field where I could split the dense from the light. Earth Mother Journey lead me to the place in the Underworld, a Cauldron, where I could send these dense energies. The exercise Underworld Offering gave me the tool which I could use to link to this place and cycle out the poisons and retain the medicines.

It’s much more involved in the process of working up to linking these three exercises. I am not sure if it was Christopher’s intent when he wrote it. It may even seem complicated to some but at the point when the three visualizations link the intake of the denser energies through the spiritual stomach, and filtered through the stone I had chosen to act as my Underworld connection, offering the energy through it to the cauldron in the Underworld, worked amazingly.

I’m so infatuated with these exercises I’ve been using them daily in situations that arise with dense energies in my self and in various situations. Today the Trine of lessons came together during a healing session. Though the details are naturally private between myself and the person I am working on, I found that the combination therapy of Reiki and grounding the denser energies through the stone and into the Underworld, to be very useful.

I’m grateful for the aid of the Reiki healer that joined me in today’s session and the patient who was willing and able to let go and allow for the deepest healing possible. The session was probably the most amazing and intense that I have experienced in my lifetime. Tears. Screaming. Shaking. Healing. Healing. Love. I met the energy with love.

I’m very grateful to Christopher Penczak and his formidable body of knowledge, and the aid that it has given me today and in my life. The Temple of Shamanic Witchcraft, if worked with regularly is a gem of a book. I highly recommend the whole series.

Looking forward to continuing the journey along this Shamanic Path a bit more confident and a lot more prepared.

Got questions? Ask. Thanks for tagging along with me.

– – –
Be well,

Scott K Smith
http://lifencompass.com

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I was reading through this coming months Transmutation News, thoughts on the Shaman’s Death. I am aware that the last few chapter reviews were about Death and Dying and I thought the newsletter, on the tail of these posts was an important connection to the last three articles in Awakening to Shamanism.

The following contains a few excerpts from Sandra Ingerman’s newsletter, Transmutation News.

((EXCERTPS))

Transmutation News August 2010

“When one embarks on a spiritual journey there is a process of dying to the ego – spirit sculpting us to be greater spiritual beings. And this journey of the shaman is filled with initiations that keep asking us to let go of our egos and a separate state of consciousness that can lead us to a unity consciousness and an experience of light that brings forth our clairvoyant, psychic and healing gifts.

As our ego is carved away at by our spirit, divine light can shine through. It is like a burning away of what keeps us separate from our spiritual state and what prevents our spirit from fully shining through us.

I have written about this many times in my books and also on the Transmutation News.

I think that the setting the intention of “the experiment” with the working in community groups brought me personally to a new stage of the shaman’s death.”

Then

“We are all on a journey – and we are all at different phases of the path – that will ultimately lead to a whole new evolution of consciousness. I think we need to move away from the focus being on the process of individuation. Individuating I think has been necessary on many levels but it is time to grow away from being so self absorbed into a consciousness of unity.

But first a death must occur before we see the possibilities.

When I was in my late teens I experimented with taking LSD. One night some of my friends had taken LSD and we went to a Grateful Dead Concert. At the concert I was separated from some of my friends.

I went into a real place of “ego death” there was no “me” and there was no “other” we were all one. I was in a glorious state of being.

I wanted to tell my friend Robin something but I knew I could never find her amidst the crowd of people. So I thought to myself that if we are all one I can tell the person standing next to me the message and it would be the same as telling Robin.

And then I had the realization that if we were all one I only had to tell myself the message.

The shaman’s death in the true sense of the term is letting go of the ego that provides any containment of the spiritual energies coming through to heal and to transform.

The shaman’s death is dying to anything that keeps you from being in the present moment. And that means letting go of outcomes, desires, needs, wants.”

You can read the full newsletter, and subscribe, at Shamanic Visions.

– – –
Be well,

Scott K Smith
http://lifencompass.com

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If you are just joining me in these posts you can catch up on the chapter-by-chapter book review of Awakening to the spirit world through these posts:

Experiential Work With Death & Dying | All Change Involves a Death

First the technical and then the personal. I put these two chapters together. As an after thought, I feel that I should have put all three chapters on Death together, but maybe the acceptance and understanding I have of the passage is a bit more “accepting” than others. I’m doing my best not to condense down the subject and breeze through it.

These two chapters contain a lot of personal experience, and sections about:

  • There are No Unfinished Conversations
  • Soul Stealing (about forgiveness)
    • Exercise: Creating Closure
  • Saying Goodbye
  • Recapitulation
  • Granting Permission to Die
  • All God’s Creatures Grieve
  • All Change involves Death
  • Dismemberment as an Initiatory Journey
    • A Journey for Dismemberment
    • Erasing Personal History

In and throughout the stories and exercises in these two chapters are guidelines for helping others to cope with Death. For the self, the parent, and those in need. The second chapter covers more initiatory processes and how we, encountering life or visionary happenings can potentially be transformative from a shamanic or mythological sense.

I think that the authors have done well in this.

As I said I have tried not to gloss over the subject, and not for any reason other than my personal experience in the last 4 or so years has been heavily washed with the passage of family, and a psychological erosion of a youth’s belief in physical immortality by the nature of life’s entropic (physical) journey.

We die. All of us. You will die. I have to say it because I need to remind myself that in time I will. It’s not a constant awareness, but it is there, hovering near, when I heal, hurt, wake, eat, and go about doing. It is something we can or cannot accept, true ,but eventually we end up there whether we accept it or not.

That’s why it is important to know it, say it, accept it. I’m not advocating running around depressed, or in fear, actually I find that by living in a process of accepting Death, there is liberation from a lot of psychological snags. Tho I do believe that my essential self (soul, what have you) may continue on is some form, and I believe that meditation and self-discovery help you to connect with that true being, it doesn’t mean I don’t feel some natural instinct to keep, continue, and create. I am not sitting around planning my funeral, bemoaning my fate, but I am also blessed with health, job, home, and love. I could be much “worse off” compared to many millions of people, and I count that as a blessing.

What does strike me is that many people do not accept this fate. It is a destination yet not a goal, it’s as if Death is a demise, or punishment. Tormented with sorrow, anguish, fear, anger, and so many other mind-traps that throughout history we have needed those who know Death near us when it too becomes our time for passage into that otherness, whatever it ultimately my be. And because it Death perceived is a punishment, we have states in our own country where you forced into dying, in accordance to the law.

Death has become reviled. It’s so terrible, it is the greatest punishment… Where did we go wrong in our understanding?

It’s thoughts like these that drive me to the point that (I think) Sandra & Hank are making: There needs to be a personal re-address of the dying process and Death. A look at first realistic and then metaphysical in the sense of our relationship to ourself and those that have/are passing, and then the greater relationship to the bigger circle of living that we are part of.

Spiritual systems abound, throughout our history from small tribes to the great ethnic groups of human kind, that express an after to what we are living now. There are many similarities in myth, legend, story, and personal experience that tell us we are part of something greater and into the greatness we go when we expire. It is fundamental to most of us (some people believe we live and die, and once dead nothing more) to prove a link at some point in our life with that other world in whatever shape that takes hold of us.

When my grandfather passed away I knew, almost to the minute, even though I was hundreds of miles away. I felt a presence. There was a whiff of Old Spice and a splash of motor oil. I was sitting at my office desk, the door was closed. His memory, smell, and spirit was there in the light before me. Saying goodbye.

At a much younger age when one of my dogs died, we lived apart at that point, I had a dream she was across a vast chasm from me. Kahlua, my dog, was on one peak and I on another. She was barking and wagging her tail at me. I called her name over and over.

The next day, my mother called to let me know she passed away.

When my boyfriend Sean took is own life, I woke to see a light in my room and someone standing in it, waving. I woke. Smiled and waved. I honestly thought it was a Guide. The next day I began to receive calls…

My great-aunt and her funeral. The spirits in our various houses. “Ghost stories”, near death experiences, encounters. We go somewhere. We become something else. We meet that greatness.

“There is nothing to fear”, as they say, “but fear itself” and when we release that fear we enter a new life. It is part of living to know this. A shamanic perspective is but one way in which we can find the Sacredness and Grace that is helpful to meet it, to complete the circle. We can aid that sacred moment through paths as described in these chapters: Conversation. Forgiveness. Acceptance. Understanding. Connecting. It is one of our task while living.

We can find it in our spirituality, yes, but ultimately we make these graces within ourself.

I hope that this finds you well.

– – –
Be well,

Scott K Smith
http://lifencompass.com

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