Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Sweet Hummingbird: The Joy of Possibility

In the tradition of Shamanism I was taught there are seven archetypes. These archetypes are "given" to the Shaman through a special ceremony called the Harmony Rite, after which the Shaman can begin to develop a personal relationship with them. This week I will discuss Sweet Hummingbird.

Hummingbird represents spiritual healing and teaches us to drink from the sweet nectar of life. On the Medicine Wheel she lives in the North and is directly connected to our ancestors and to the Creators. She reminds us of our own ability to create and shows us the many unimagined possibilities in our life. 

Whenever I see a Hummingbird I am inspired and encouraged. She reminds me of all the joy that exists in the world. Being able to feel this joy always energizes me.

When you experience joy it creates ripples which extend into the world and manifest wonderful things. Joy is a very powerful energy and Hummingbird taps directly into this power just as effortlessly as she dips her beak into a flower for a drink of sweet nectar.

Anytime I find that I have become disconnected, that I have allowed my ego to sour my attitude, I turn to Hummingbird.She reminds me that we are all connected like flowers in a garden, and as I grow my roots reach out and touch the flowers around me. Knowing this immediately inspires me to be my best.

To connect with your own Hummingbird, set the intention to create a loving relationship with her. Then try placing your hand over your third chakra and speak directly to her. Ask her what possibilities exist in your life, and let her guide you to the flower that holds your sweetest possibility. Allow her sunny energy to radiate from you, acting as a beacon for finding joy where ever it exists. Create your own beautiful garden and see what magic blooms.

Read next week for my blog post about the fourth powerful archetype: Eagle.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Mama Jaguar: The Luminous Warrior

As I mentioned last week, there are seven Shamanic archetypes that are "given" to the Shaman through a special ceremony called the Harmony Rite. This week I will discuss Mama Jaguar: the Luminous Warrior.

Jaguar represents deep emotional healing and teaches us to step beyond fear. On the Medicine Wheel she lives in the West and is connected to the moon and shadows. Hers is the way of dramatic transformations, of life and of death. She tears away the pieces of us which no longer serve us so that they may die, and she breathes life in to our core being so that we may truly live.

At first this archetype was a little scary to me, after all she knows my deepest and most hidden unhealed fears. But now that I have come to know her, connecting with Jaguar give me a deep sense of strength.

Before I studied Shamanism, I was terrified of the sleeping in the dark. I imagined all manner of evil lurking in the shadows waiting to get me. I actually used to sleep with the lights on, even as an adult.

Since developing a relationship with Jaguar, I have been able (and now prefer) to sleep in total darkness. Knowing that Jaguar is always with me, helping to dispel negative energies, transform my own negative thoughts and connect me to an inner balance has empowered me.

If you would like to connect with your own Jaguar, set the intention of creating an honest relationship with her and try placing your hands over your second chakra while speaking directly to her. As you may have done with Serpent, imagine what she looks like. Look into her eyes and let her communicate what she is feeling. Let her strip away everything that you fear. Follow her in the jungle until you find the strength you have always possessed.

Read next week for my blog post about the third archetype: Sweet Hummingbird.

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Serpent: The Physical Healer

In Shamanism, at least in the tradition I was taught, there are seven archetypes. Seeds for these archetypes are "given" to the Shaman through a special ceremony called the Harmony Rite. In this way, and through many meditations at the fire, the Shaman develops a personal relationship with these archetypes, who become powerful allies.

Serpent represents physical healing and teaches us to shed our past the way she sheds her skin. On the Medicine Wheel, she lives in the South and has a deep connection to Pachamama (the Q'ero word for Mother Earth).

For me, my relationship with Serpent represents a physical connection to Spirit. One in which I can "feel" messages being delivered to me through my senses.

For example, many days I each lunch outside in the rose garden near my office. I sometimes close my eyes while sitting on the bench, and through Serpent feel the world around me. What am I smelling, what's touching my skin, what's under my feet, what's above my head, what's behind me, etc.

I have found this to be very calming and a deep expression of the power of Serpent.

I believe that anyone can create a connection to the archetypes whether they have received the Harmony Rite or not. After all, the key to almost everything in life is the intention you put behind it.

If you would like to connect with this archetype, try gently placing your hands over your first chakra and speaking directly to Serpent. Imagine what she looks like. Is she big or little? What color is she? What texture is her skin? Is SHE really a HE? Everyone's archetypes will be tailored to them, so pay close attention so that you may honor your Serpent as it truly is.

Serpent already knows you on the deepest level possible. She has burrowed deep into your soul's hiding places and sees the wounds which need healing. She can bring your attention to those places and help you shed what no longer serves you. She is a powerful ally, indeed.

Read next week for my blog post about the second powerful archetype: Jaguar.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Honoring My Mother

When I started this blog, I invited my mother to write a guest piece to share her experiences with Spirit. The following is her description of the experience that set her on the path to spiritual self discovery.
"I am writing to tell you of an initiation of sorts that I experienced over 40 years ago, 44 years to be exact in the winter of 1966.  Never forgetting this remarkable occurrence on the top of Mount Tamalpias it was brought into focus as a Shamanic event when reading The Reluctant Shaman.  Nature, animals, humans, and the Full Moon. My friends and I were living in idyllic Mill Valley and one full moon night hiked up the slopes of Mt. Tam, the guardian mother of the Miwoks living  there in pre-columbian time. Were they with us then? They called her the Sleeping Maiden.  This night, She lived as we came upon a circle of deer standing on a knoll.  There seemed in my memory to be an equal number of deer and young people.  We slowly encircled the deer who unafraid stood their ground watching us.  The beauty of those few moments as we stood  with each other was timeless and preternatural - we all felt the young Humans and the Deer as One. The Holy manuscript of nature the only book that can enlighten the reader. A time of peace and unity, which I accepted and integrated this initiation into my world view. Perhaps the deer ever alert and paying attention at that moment trusting the gentle truce of human interaction have been my teachers as a connection to nature and the divine even to this moment."
I share this with you because it illustrates my mother's unique sense of the world. This story also illustrates how Deer was a messenger of Spirit, allowing my mother and her friends to experience its gentle, innocent nature, giving them a sense of magic, of hope, of connection to the world.
I invite anyone who would like to share their experience with Spirit to submit their stories to the Magic of Spirit's Facebook page.