Kundalini Splendor

Kundalini Splendor <$BlogRSDURL$>

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Shamanic Journeys: The Shadow 

I have done shamanic journeying before. Once,in a Michael Harner workshop, we traveled into the underworld to find our sacred animal. I quickly found mine on the first journey--it was a white bear, but not a polar bear as such. We quickly became friends.

Then we made a second journey. This time he was no where to be found. As I stood there wondering what had happened, I stumbled forward (in my mind). He had come up behind me and playfully butted me over. I scrambled up and got on his back. We then danced like a cowboy astride a wild mustang. Great fun!

But yesterday's journeys were different. The purpose was not to discover a power animal. Tom (who is also a trained psychotherapist) told us we would be transformed by our journey. (And, in fact, in my recent meditation I had heard Ganesha, agent and herald of transformation.) This journeying held many surprises for me.

We first (mentally) descended a flight of steps, then went through a kind of tunnel or passage, then climbed steps back up on the other side to enter "celestial consciousness." I found that I was reluctant even to go down these steps. I moved very slowly, as if somewhat fearful of what I might find below. And indeed, what I found was fear itself, something I had not anticipated and didn't realize I was carrying with me. So, in my anxiety, I called for a spirit guide to help me through and an angel promptly appeared at my side. (After all, I reasoned, even Dante had Virgil to steer him through hell.) My "angel" somehow became a Buddha (perhaps a more familiar image in my mind), and together we crossed the tunnel and started the climb up. At this point the guide became a young Asian man, naked to the waist, who went ahead of me and danced on the stairs as we ascended. (Was this my old friend "sturdy boy" who has sometimes come to me during meditation?) Sturdy boy (for me) represents strength and joy (and of course youth itself.)

When we arrived at the celestial realms, I was all but overwhelmed at the thought of where we were (literally, in heaven, ultimate reality.) I felt great humility and bowed as low as I could before the great glowing Buddha I found there. I realized how totally insignificant and vulnerable I was. Then I was taken into the energy field and body of the Buddha, relinquished (with a bit of regret) my personal ego-self, and became part of the universal life force which the Buddha represented. Soon the Buddha closed his eyes and there was only deep serenity.

We did the exercise again at the end of the workshop. This time I moved with greater confidence, even though there were threats (snakes and scorpions and such) along the way. Tom sang and drummed to us throughout both journeys, and the hypnotic drum beat called up a figure of a tall, confident, and poised Native American brave. As I climbed the stairs back up, I saw several Native American dancers moving to the rhythm of the drum.

About this time, someone in the audience (a male nearby), broke into uncontrollable sobs, and these continued through the rest of the journey. Tom simply drummed and sang louder. Tom instructed us to go the the highest point we could imagine. I found myself becoming the "Indian brave," standing on a mountain peak, sensing the great power and purposefulness I now carried within.

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?