I arrived home last night from my time in Brisbane training in the shamanic path and healing arts, and offering sessions to clients, as well as catching up with family. Today I am resting, restoring, and reflecting on the wonderful times had.
I think the most exciting experience, and there were many, was taking a graduating 2nd level student on an intuitive drive and creating ceremony for her to make an essence. An intuitive drive is where my student takes me to a destination without telling me where we are going - a destination she has no idea of herself until she tunes into her inner guidance. She has to listen well to see where to go. For this student, I gave her time to look at a map and tune in the night before the drive. I did the same thing and wrote the destination - or exit point at least - down before leaving, having it clear in my head. My student took the same exit road from the many options available, just as I had seen it, however the destination was not clear - for me, or for her, until we arrived.
Out of 6 of such drives (this is relatively knew to my training) I have seen the destination clearly 4 times, and the road we exit Brisbane on 6 times. I am not sure who is reading or directing who - but it fascinates me that we (the student, guides, and me) are all on the same wave length!
It was beautiful to set up camp on a large stone in the middle of a creek bed on Mt Nebo for four hours of sacred work. While my student was journalling her experience, I felt a call to so some release work with my ancestors. A stone had been calling me throughout the morning and I went to it and listened to its message - it was ready to assist me to release something that had been troubling me all of my life, that is, a sense of 'not belonging'. I have worked on this issue many times, and yet from time to time this feeling has persisted.
The subject of belonging had come up for no fewer than 4 clients over the weekend, and I knew there must still be work to be done for myself on this, and perhaps it was also a message to take time to share the journey and the healing of belonging with you here.
The feeling of 'not belonging' is actually quite common it seems, particualrly amongst people who live and work on the fringe of mainstream practice. Some may feel they don't 'belong' in their family of origin, others say that they don't belong amongst their colleagues or peers, and some don't feel they belong on the planet. Some have all these feelings. Such feelings can lead to feelings of dissociation - zoning out - not being present with themselves, with others, with time, or with the space they live and work in. There may be a strong sense of being different, walking alone, standing out, feeling inadequate, or having little confidence or trust on your self or what you have to offer. Some may have a strong tug to leave the planet. This latter feeling is serious and if you have this, you are advised to seek professional help to support you.
If you are some one who feels like this, or know someone who does, perhaps Shamanic technologies, or other modalities can be of use to assist you to feel more connected. It is always wise to seek professional help if you are not coping well with feelings of any kind.
Ceremony, a powerful yet simple shamanic modality, can be used to help with this. The steps of one example of ceremony, as carried out by me on the weekend (see photos), to create a deeper feeling of belonging are as follows:
- Plan to take some time off to spend in nature and choose a place where you wont be disturbed. This place will do well do have stones, however, you can substitute these with any plant material or shells.
- Go to your place in nature where you will create ceremony, and sit quietly and connect with your your breath, and with the world within where your ancestors dwell. You might have shamanic tools with you if you walk this path - a musical instrument, a gift to give to the earth, a crystal and so on. It is good to begin with a prayer of gratitude as you do this, giving thanks for all that exists to support you around and within you.
- Once you have grounded and connected with your ceremonial space, take a walk and state to the spirits around you why you have come, looking out for a stone(s) or object (s) that call to you. Ask permission of the spirit of the stone, or object, to include it (them) in ceremony. You may choose one stone or object for yourself and one for your ancestors, or have one to represent both. If you feel more stones call you, go with it, being respectful of moving them from their resting place.
- Sit quietly again now, and take some time to build light within and around you. Breathing in and out through your nose and connecting with your belly. Do your best to lift your rib cage and expand your belly as you breathe. Hold your breath in for a few seconds and send the out breath down to connect through the earth with the heart of Mother Earth and bring that energy back with your in breath. When you feel this connection, do the same with the world above you, connecting with the Sun, Sky, Moon, Stars, and planets. Feel amongst the world above for a connection with your ancestors, and perhaps you may even feel a connection from another planet or star where your soul may have first dwelled. Bring light and love energy from the world above to your belly space.
- Next, come back into your body, and settle your spirit home inside of yourself. Bring it in like a kite being pulled from the sky above. Then, create a vessel beneath where you are sitting to send any tension or stress to. This can be a cave made of stone or crystals, an earth stone, an underground river and so on. It will come to you.
- Once you have grounded and connected with your cave, come back to your body, and think about belonging here on this planet, with your family of origin or your own family, with your tribe, with your beloved, with your colleagues, with your peers. Search for where the connection falters, for where you feel the resistance to fully belonging. Search for it in your body, in your heart, in your mind, within your spirit - your essence of Self.
- Next, contain the resistance within a circle and place it in the light within your belly. Then breathe it through to the cave beneath you in your imagination, deep into the cave. Ask the spirit of the cave to transform the energy into loving connection and a sense of belonging.
- Next, breathe into the stone in your hand that represents your ancestors. Speak to them in your mind, first giving thanks for the many gifts they have bestowed upon you through genetic coding, and ask them to assist you to let go of any resistance to belonging here and now in your life as it is. Ask them also if they are ready now to let go of their own resistance to loving and conscious connection. Release the energy you feel into the stone(s) or object(s).
- Come back to your physical presence, taking quiet breaths with your eyes open, and then find a place in nature to take your stones or objects to release them. It is ideal to have running or moving water to wash the energy down stream (or into the ocean), or you can place the stone or object in amongst other objects in nature to feel connected and be part of the surroundings.
- As you release the stones or objects, speak out loud to your ancestors and the Great Spirit and spirit guides that you feel are present. Ask them to assist you to release anything in this or any other life, or that has been handed down to you from other times by your ancestors, that prevents you from connecting with yourself fully, and with your life. Anything in the way of you being the person you want to be, and living the fulfilling life you deserve.
- Spend some time giving thanks, then ground yourself back into the present moment. Bring your spirit body fully back into your solar plexus area. Take some deep breaths with open eyes and connect fully with every thing around you, before moving out of ceremonial space. Take a few minutes to journal and or photograph the experience. Treat yourself well for the next few days, and rest as much as you can, drink lots of water, sit in the sun. Allow the transformation to happen consciously.
- Create a mantra to support your new sense of belonging - it may be as simple as "I belong" and apply it to every situation you feel slightly uncomfortable in - or when you notice you do on fact feel like you belong.