Anatomy of a Soul

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SOUL PSYCHOLOGY

The field of Western psychology is one-dimensional in that its focus is limited to individual’s present lives in the 3rd (physical) dimension. Although Western psychology is very effective in what it does cover, its shortcoming is that it does not take into account the fact that we are multi-dimensional beings.

Our souls have lived multiple lives in many different dimensions. In fact, as we will explore in this article, our souls are living in multiple dimensions at this very moment.

Soul psychology includes all aspects of the soul, such as past, future, and inter lives; karma; life lessons; other dimensions; spirit guides; and soul groups in order to assist clients realize their highest potential. Methods used include past life and life-between-lives therapy and working with spirit guides. Soul psychologists support clients as they work on their soul history, soul imprints, soul lessons, and soul inclinations (passions and gifts). In addition, the soul psychologist helps clients process their interactions with others in their soul sphere of influence.

To read about the different dimensions referred to in this article, please access my blog on “Dimensions of Consciousness” at: https://drakebearstephen.wordpress.com/2014/02/11/consciousness-dimensions/

SOUL AND SPIRIT

Often, spirit and soul are used interchangeably and can have different definitions based on the culture defining them. Spirit is action energy. It is our divine connection to the Source. It activates purpose, mission, and evolution opportunities. Soul is identity energy. It contains consciousness, memory, personality, and ego when we are incarnated. When embodied, we are spirit, have a soul, and live in a body.

Holographic energy can create a whole universe from each individual part no matter how small or distant the part is. The part contains the whole and yet is clearly distinguishable from it. In a holographic universe, every moment (past, present, and future) exists simultaneously. Every place is connected to every other place. Every particle contains the full awareness of every other particle. The soul is holographic. The part of an incarnated individual that resides in the 3rd dimension is just one part of a greater soul that stretches across multiple dimensions.

Ian Lawton, in his book The Big Book of the Soul, describes soul consciousness as holographic. He says that a soul is simultaneously the individual aspect of Source and the full holographic representation of Source. Therefore the Soul is a part of Source but retains its own free will. Every individual consciousness is a part of Universal consciousness. He says “All is in each and each is in all and all is in Source and Source is in all.” This is how we are all related.

In this article, we will focus on the anatomy of the holographic soul.

Many cultures believe that an individual has multiple souls. In many cases, one of the souls is associated with the body and the other one can leave the body (free soul). Each of the different souls has a different destiny after death. Among many northern Asian peoples one soul remains with the corpse, one soul descends to the underworld, and one soul ascends to the heavens. Following is a list of how some different theological belief systems view the soul:

Animism – Everything has a soul.

Apapocuva Guaraní of Brazil – A gentle vegetable soul comes fully formed from the dwelling place of the gods and joins with the infant at the moment of birth. Soon, a vigorous animal soul joins the vegetable soul. Upon death, the vegetable soul enters paradise and the animal soul becomes a fierce ghost.

Buddhism – Humans have no permanent self. Anatta means no-self or no soul.

Chinese – A human has two souls: an ethereal hun (spiritual soul/spirit that leaves the body after death) and a p’o (physical soul that remins with the corpse). The p’o is linked to the dead body and the grave, whereas the hún is linked to the ancestral tablet. Chinese traditions differ over the number of hun and p’o souls in a person. Taoism believes in 10 souls, sanhunqipo (3 hun and 7 p’o).

Christianity – A human has a body (soma), soul (psyche), and spirit (pneuma).

Egyptians – Souls reside in different parts of the body. An individual can have up to 10 souls, which include: Ren, Ka, Sheut, Ib/Ab, Sekhem, Aakhu, Khaibut, Khat, and Sahu. At death, the Ka remains in the tomb and the Ba ascends to the spiritual regions.

Eskimo – A human has more than one type of soul. Some believe one is associated with respiration and the other accompanies the body as a shadow.

Hawaiian – There are 3 parts of the soul: Aumakua (Superconscious Self), Uhane (Conscious Self), and Unihipili (Subconscious Self).

Hinduism – There are 25 coverings wrapped on a soul: Iccha avarka, Linga deha, Avyakta sharira, Avidya avarna, Karma avarna, Kama avarna, Jeevacchadaka, Paramacchadaka, Narayana rupa avarna, Vasudeva rupa avarna, Sankarshana rupa avarna, Pradhyumna avarka, Anniruddha avarka, Anniruddha sharira, Vasudeva kavaca, Narayana kavaca, Anandamaya kosha, Vignanamaya kosha, Manomaya kosha, Vangmaya kosha, Shrotrumaya kosha, Chakshurmaya kosha, Pranamaya kosha, Annamaya kosha, and the Gross Body.

Hungarian/Baltic-Finnic – Humans have a dualistic shadow-soul called Itse.

Jainism – Every living being has a soul. The soul (Atman) is categorized by its liberation state. It can be Liberated (having attained Moksha) or Non-liberated (exists in either human form, in the form of another living being, in heaven, or in hell until the birth and death cycle is complete).

Kabbalah – The human soul has 3 basic components:

  • Nefesh is the “animal soul” or “lower soul” and represents instinct and personality. At death, the Nefesh remains in the grave.
  • Ruah is the “middle soul” and represents intellect and the conscious. At death the Ruah ascends to the terrestrial paradise in accordance with its merits.
  • Neshamah is the spiritual portion of the soul or the “higher self”. It is the power connection to the Source. At death, the Neshamah goes back to the Divine world or Divine Mind.

Plato – A human soul has 3 parts: Logos (mind, reason), Thymos (emotion, spiritedness, masculine), and Eros (desire, feminine).

Q’ero of the Andes – When a human dies, their body goes to Earth, their wisdom go to the mountains, and their energy goes to the stars.

Rudolf Steiner – A human has 3 stages of soul development: the Sentient Soul, the Intellectual (Mind) Soul, and the Consciousness Soul.

Siberia and Mongolia – A human possesses at least 3 souls: the Suld, Ami, and Suns. Some groups, such as the Samoyed, believe there are 4 souls in women and 5 souls in men. These extra souls are not permanent, like the core 3 souls that all Siberian groups agree upon, and the extra one or two souls gradually dissipate after the death of the physical body.

SOUL COSMOLOGY

Our souls are multi-dimensional. This means they exist in multiple dimensions concurrently. There is also a soul “hierarchy” that supports our soul’s journey.

Our incarnated Soul, in the form of an energy body, overlays the physical body. The energy body is attached to the physical body through the chakra system. However, the incarnated Soul is only a small part of our total soul energy.

The Oversoul is an intermediate level that exists between the incarnated Soul and the Higher Self. The Oversoul does not incarnate. Its function is to coordinate multiple soul journeys. For example, the soul can be having multiple experiences in different dimensions simultaneously, including parallel lives on Earth. The Oversoul keeps a bird’s eye view of all of the soul’s activities.

The Higher Self is the intermediary between our Soul/Oversoul and the Source of All That Is (aka Creator, Great Spirit, God). It is the individualized essence of Source. It is called by many different names, such as: I Am Presence, I Am That I Am, Pure Being, Love, Essence of Life, Cosmic Consciousness, Universal Mind, Atman, and Monad. The Higher Self holds all knowledge and wisdom. It knows all that the Soul has ever experienced. The Higher Self is the highest point of consciousness within the Soul. It is totally and irrevocably one with the Source of All That Is. It is the source of our intuition. The Higher Self, representing the Eternal Self, is omnipresent, omnipotent, omniscient, eternal, infinite, wise, loving, light, free, and indestructible.

Being holographic, the Oversoul and Higher Self are aware of all the Soul’s fragments as well as the Soul’s wholeness simultaneously. When a Soul is ready to incarnate, it works with the Oversoul, Higher Self, and its guides and mentors to create a life plan for the upcoming life.

Our conscious minds are tapped into the Soul level that is incarnated on Earth. The Oversoul and Higher Self can be accessed through the subconscious or superconscious mind. Deep trance, shamanic journeying, and meditation can open these portals. Much of the communication between the Oversoul and our other Soul Parts occur while we are asleep. Sometimes, when we first awaken after sleeping, there is a period of time that bleed-through of awareness from the other dimensions can occur.

By acknowledging and listening to our Higher Self, we expand our perception to view a much bigger picture than what our everyday incarnated consciousness provides.

The whole of eternity is present in each moment.
When I live my life one moment at a time, one breath at a time,
I live from my Highest Self which is one with all.
I am a child of the one light, a bridge between heaven and earth.
When love flows across that bridge, miracles happen.
–Joan Borysenko & Joan Drescher, On Wings of Light

The Layers of the Soul:

Soul Layers

The Cosmology of the Soul:

Soul Cosmology

SOUL RELATIONSHIPS

Below is a list of different relationships that the soul can be a participant in:

Member of a Soul Group: Every soul belongs to a soul group. A soul group is a group of souls who come from the same soul family and soul origin. Often soul groups reincarnate together on Earth. Sometimes only a part of the group incarnate at the same time. Individuals in the same soul group have the same soul purpose and can have similar feelings, thoughts, and inclinations. When an individual is incarnated with members of their soul group, they feel deeply connected.

Soul Mates – Soul mates are souls that have had many lifetimes together. Their purpose is to help each other grow, evolve, and process karma. Soul mates play many different types of roles such as siblings, parents, children, best friends, co-workers, teachers, and romantic partners. Soul mates feel a deep connection through friendship, love, intimacy, and sexuality or they feel intense resistance, loathing, and even hate. A soul can have many soulmates in a lifetime. Soul mate relationships can be brief or they can last for an entire lifetime.

Twin Flames – If is a popular belief that when souls were first created and began their incarnations on Earth, they were split in two, creating the twin flame or twin soul phenomenon. In addition, many believe they were split by binary gender (male and female). This leads many people to believe that they must find their “other half” and be reunited in order to become whole. I, personally, do not support this concept, mainly because it fosters the belief that our souls are not good enough by themselves, that they are incomplete. Sri Ram Kaa & Kira Raa, through communication with Archangel Zadkiel, define 4 different soul groups which supports the belief that twin flames exist for some but not all souls:

  1. Union Souls: These souls were birthed as one but split in half when Atlantis deconstructed. They are seeking to reunify with their other half (twin flame). Union souls experience many marriages over multiple lifetimes.
  2. Omni Souls: These souls were birthed as one and have never split. They feel complete without a partner. Omni souls experience temporary relationships.
  3. Dual Souls: These souls were birthed as one complete soul but have another counterpart (twin soul). They are whole as individuals yet find greater connection with their counterpart. Dual souls, while looking for their twin, can find earthly fulfillment without their counterpart.
  4. Multi-expressional Souls: These souls were birthed as one soul but have the ability and desire to express in many ways. Multi-expressional souls often practice polyamory and may find it difficult to stay in a committed relationship.

Parallel Souls – Parallel souls, also known as parallel lives, is one soul that is living multiple lives in the 3rd dimension simultaneously. Technically all lives are happening concurrently because in other dimensions, there is no time-space continuum. Time is not linear, it is a frequency. So past, present, and future lives are all happening at once but at different frequencies. A parallel life is two or more lives happening concurrently at the same frequency.

Soul Transfers (Walk-ins) – In this process, a new soul merges into an existing incarnated body and the original soul leaves. This is always done with agreement between the incoming and outgoing souls. The human self may not be aware of this transfer because the agreements are made on the soul level and the incoming soul assumes the memory of the outgoing soul. In addition, the incoming soul agrees to take on the karmic responsibilities of that body’s life. The incoming soul is usually more evolved than the outgoing soul. Many times the soul exchange takes place during a traumatic situation. The advantage to the incoming soul is that they can activate their mission right away instead of waiting for the physical body to grow through infancy and childhood.

Soul Braiding (Walk-alongs) – In this process, a new soul merges into an existing incarnated body but the original soul does not leave. This is usually a short term or temporary situation. There are different reasons why a soul may want to “borrow” an existing body such as they may never have been on Earth before and want to test it out or they may come in with special abilities in order to carry out a particular mission.

Soul Entities – These disembodied souls have crossed over through the death process but remain in the 4th dimension (the astral plane). This happens if the soul is not ready or willing to “pass through the Light” to the 5th dimension. Instead, they desire to live vicariously through a body that is still incarnated so they attach to a physical/energy body of an incarnated soul. Disembodied souls that become entities can be divided into two categories: the “lost” (souls may not realize they have passed or feel they have left the physical plane with unfulfilled agendas) and the “fallen” (souls that have less than desirable intentions when attaching to an incarnated soul). A host is an incarnated individual who voluntarily shares their body with other souls while retaining their own consciousness and sense of self.

Starseeds – These are beings from other planets, star systems, or galaxies. The motivations for starseeds to come to earth are usually to help Earth’s evolutionary transformation. Starseeds have an awareness of galactic consciousness. New starseeds have had few or no previous lifetimes on earth and may have a difficult time adjusting to Earth’s environment. Typical starseeds may have lived 5-50 life times on Earth but retain some of their extraterrestrial abilities. Old soul starseeds have had hundreds of life times on Earth. They are often spiritual teachers, shamans, prophets, light workers, healers, and leaders. Technically speaking, all humans are probably starseeds if their lineage is followed all the way to Source.

 We have calcium in our bones,
iron in our veins, carbon in our souls.
and nitrogen in our brains.
93% stardust, with souls made of flames,
we are all just stars that have people names.
–Nikita Gill

Wanderers – These beings are souls from other planets or dimensions, who come to Earth with a specific mission. Often this mission is helping prepare humanity for coming changes. After completion of the mission, they return “home”. Technically speaking, all souls are Wanderers because they experience many realities simultaneously. A soul’s ultimate “home” is the return to higher consciousness as sparks of light and the eventual reunion with the Source of All That Is.

Our Soul Relationships:

Soul Relationships

Copyright © 2016 Drake Bear Stephen. Except where acknowledged. www.DrakeInnerprizes.com

The Tale of Two Feathers

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Once there was a Chameleon that had forgotten it could shapeshift into human form. Chameleon had forgotten it had already had many previous lives as a male and a female human. You see, Chameleon was quite sensitive and easily intimidated by the world so it spent its days being invisible by blending into its surroundings. It had a safe cave it stayed in quite a lot.

One day, as Chameleon was peacefully dozing in its cave, a Spirit appeared. Chamelon asks “Who are you?” The Spirit replies “I am The Reincarnationist.” Chameleon asks “Why are you here?” The Reincarnationist replies “I am here to bestow the Power on you. You already have the gift of Sensitivity so that will balance with Power to keep your Ego in check.” Chameleon asks “But why are you giving me the Power and the Gift?” The Reincarnationist replies “It is now time for you to shapeshift into a human. Only this time you will be both male and female in one lifetime. You will learn to embody the masculine and feminine by blending both into one identity.” Chameleon asks “But how will this happen?”

The Reincarnationist then gives Chameleon the following directions: “Lie under the light of the next full moon to absorb the feminine energies and dream your body into being.” Chameleon follows this direction and lies under the light of Grandmother Moon. Its body morphs into a human female body with fully developed female genitalia.
The next day in the cave, The Reincarnationist looks at Chameleon’s body and nods with approval. Now he says “Tomorrow lie under Father Sun to balance Grandmother Moon’s energies.” So the next day, Chameleon once again follows the Reincarnationist’s directions. Her now female body begins another transformation, this time adding male characteristics and fully developed male genitalia alongside the female genitalia.
The next day back in the cave, The Reincarnationist nods approval again. He tells Chameleon “Tonight lie under the stars.” And so, Chameleon does lie under the stars and as s/he does, Brother/Sister Star Dust falls on him/her and activates his/her Androgyny. Now his/her emotions, thoughts, and entire being is balanced perfectly with masculine and feminine energies.

The next day The Reincarnationist is ecstatic with his creation, however, he gives Chameleon one last set of instructions. He says “Lie under the sky today once again.” So as Chameleon lies beneath the sky, soaking up the healing energy of Mother Earth and the healing rays of Father Sun, a rainbow appears and shines its colors down upon him/her illuminating his/her body, chakras, and heart.

The next day The Reincarnationist says “Your physical body is made of Mother Earth and your energy body is illuminated by Father Sun, Grandmother Moon, Brother/Sister Stars, and the Rainbow. It is now time to leave your cave and venture into the World. It will be a great journey that you travel as you share the light that has energized your body with others. Now you no longer need to hide by blending into your surroundings. You will be visible so that you can guide others to the light. Once in a while you may feel a need to return to the cave to rejuvenate but it will be a temporary respite and you will return to the World refreshed and ready to serve. I have one additional gift for you. That gift is your new name.” And with that, The Reincarnationist blew the name “Two Feathers” into Chameleon’s body. “From now on you will be known by the name ‘Two Feathers’.”

Copyright © 2014 Drake Bear Stephen. Except where acknowledged. http://www.DrakeInnerprizes.com

Medicine Carriers

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Med Carrier 3

Medicine is derived from the Latin ars medicina, meaning the art of healing. When the term “medicine” is mentioned, many are triggered to think about our Western medical profession. Western medicine includes the science and art of diagnosing, treating, curing, and preventing disease, relieving pain, and improving health. A large part of the practice includes medicine that medicates the patient, also known as drug therapy.

However, there is another perception of “medicine” that originates from Native American culture. From this perspective, medicine is any object, spell, rite, or anything at all, really, that has natural or supernatural powers as a remedy, preventive, or protection. This form of traditional medicine (aka indigenous, folk, complimentary, or alternative medicine) comprises knowledge about plant, animal, and mineral-based medicines, spiritual therapies, and manual techniques that have been developed over many generations.

According to Native American beliefs, medicine is an inner power that is found in both Nature and all individuals. Annie Spencer defines Native American medicine as “a state of being in harmony and balance with ourselves, the world, and with Spirit.”

Medicine is not just a pill that can be taken to treat symptoms, but it refers to anything that promotes goodness or healing. Common medicine can include plants, healing techniques, teachings, and spirituality.

The simplest definition of medicine, then, is anything that is good for you.

Native Americans also call the individuals who provide this medicine as “medicine men”. Their role is similar to that of shamans. However “shaman” is a term that is from Siberian/Mongolian indigenous culture while “medicine man” is unique to North American indigenous culture.

Sadly “medicine man” is a term that excludes more than half the population. There are very powerful “medicine women”, too. And there are also Two Spirits or Third Gender individuals who quite often had been the “medicine people” of the tribe. So the term “medicine man” is just too narrowly defining and perpetuates a non-existent belief of a binary gender system.

I propose changing the terms to “medicine carrier”. Quechuan is the language of the indigenous people of the high Andes of Peru from whom a lot of my spiritual study has been with and about. The Quechuan term for medicine carrier is “collawaya”.

A “healer” does not heal. If a healer tells you that they can, then they are speaking from Ego. Every individual soul heals itself. Our souls are our one true healer. Our Higher Self has all the knowledge and resources needed to heal the physical body for its Highest Good.

As Karen Paolino Correia, a hypnotherapist says, the soul knows the root cause for healing and one of the ways this information can be accessed is through hypnotherapy techniques. She says, “It’s important to understand that the soul knows everything about your client; past, present and future and the soul will always guide with unconditional love, protecting and guiding your client to their highest and best outcome.”

It is the function of a medicine carrier to carry the medicine to the client. In Reiki, the practitioner is a conduit through which universal energy is passed to the client. In shamanism, the practitioner is called a “hollow bone”. It is not the practitioner that is healing the client, but the practitioner’s healing spirits work through the practitioner to assist the client’s healing.

Medicine carriers have many different tools in their individual medicine bags. Someone who is searching for assistance should research the available options and then choose the tools that most resonate or feel right. It is not uncommon to pursue many different options over the course of a lifetime because each alternative addresses specific issues. We are “holistic” individuals therefore we should treat ourselves with “holistic” solutions.

Med Carrier 2

Western medicine has made incredible advances in healing the physical body but they only look at a portion of the entire picture of the human being. They routinely exclude the energy body and all spiritual aspects of the soul since these are not something that can be “proven” in a lab setting. Eastern medicine is very balanced in its approach to healing including not only treatment of the physical body but focusing largely on the energy body.

I know when I am in pain, I want to have my entire being treated, including body, mind, and soul. I don’t just want the symptoms treated but I want to understand the core cause of my suffering because it’s a soul lesson. So I will go to my Western medical doctor but I will also seek out assistance from medicine carriers.

MEDICINE TEST
There are a few questions you can ask to determine if a form of medicine is good for you. For instance, “does it grow corn?” This question is rooted in Native American philosophy. It means that if what you are doing isn’t making your life and the lives of others around you better, then why do it? “Corn” is an English word that means “ears of growth”. Corn is a symbol of sustenance and survival.

So ask yourself when you are about to take some medicine, “does it grow corn?” Will it provide healthy growth? Will it contribute in a positive way? Will it provide results that support your Highest Good? If the answer is “yes”, it is good medicine. If the answer is “no”, leave it alone.

Sometimes, when emotion and ego interfere with receiving authentic answers, we need to step back and get a bigger picture of the situation. Distancing ourselves emotionally can provide more clarity. Other techniques to aid in providing an answer to “is it good medicine” is to do muscle testing or use a pendulum. These techniques make it easier to tap into our unconscious which really holds all of the drivers of our behavior.

Lastly, when we experience those times when we feel lousy, when something hasn’t gone the way we wanted, or we feel something “bad” has happened to us, if we tell ourselves that it was just “good medicine”, then we can accept the experience as necessary for our soul’s growth and heal on… This also helps us move from victim mode to a place of self-empowerment.

Med Carrier 1

SNAKE MEDICINE
The symbol associated with Western medicine is the rod of Asclepius, the image of a single snake wrapped around a staff. Asclepius is a Greed deity associated with healing and medicine.

The incorrect symbol often used to represent Western medicine is the Cauceus, which is the staff of Hermes. It was carried by the Roman deity, Mercury, the messenger of the gods and guide of the dead. The staff of Hermes has two snakes and a pair of wings.

Med Carrier 4

Snakes are a predominant archetype associated with healing and energy movement. In the Andean energy medicine tradition, the healer uses the archetype of sachamama, the snake, to track energetic blocks and dis-ease in the physical body.

In Ayurvedic medicine there are snake-like energy pathways called nadi. Two of these are the pingala and ida, which flow along the spinal column. A third major nadi, the kundalini, sits at the base of the spine like a coiled snake, until it is stimulated through tantra or yoga to rise up the spinal column.

Snakes, then, are also medicine carriers in many cultures.

Med Carrier 5

Copyright © 2015 Drake Bear Stephen. Except where acknowledged. www.DrakeInnerprizes.com

The Wheel: An Online Shamanic Apprentice Program

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These days we all are very busy in our personal lives and perhaps a bit reluctant to leave our home. And we have an amazing tool at home with which to connect without leaving home. This is the Internet.

I have gotten numerous requests for shamanic training from individuals spread around the country. Most are not able to travel to me and it would not be economical for me to travel to each one of them. So I began offering many subjects from my Soul School: A Shamanic Mystery School as an online apprentice program.
The best aspect of an apprenticeship is that it is designed especially for you and you alone. So we cover the topics that you are interested in and skip the ones you already know or have no interest in.

The goal of this apprenticeship is to spend 1-2 hours on Skype every 1-2 weeks. Then we may formulate some homework such as doing a ritual.

It will be optimal but not required to eventually meet in person to complete experiential work that cannot be done over Skype.

The only thing we can take with us out of this lifetime is the knowledge and wisdom that our soul acquires. So any gain we make in knowing ourselves will stay with us. There are two rules of the road when you are traveling on a journey of personal transformation:

Can you answer this series of questions associated with self-knowledge? Who am I? Where do I come from? Where am I going? What is my life’s purpose? What are my gifts?

By knowing the answers to these questions, you become self-empowered. A self-empowered individual can manifest their dreams into being. Each one of us is a prize from the Universe to our Self and from our Self to the Universe. Each one of us has a unique gift to give.

What we see when we look in the mirror is what the world reflects back to us. We get what we believe we deserve. The more we love ourselves the more of our dreams we can manifest. When we believe we are not good enough or deserve what we want, we block the flow of abundance, prosperity, and love.

You may feel that you are blocked or stuck and unable to manifest your dreams. There are obstacles such as past contracts and vows, pre-life selection beliefs, past defeats and traumas that can be moved out of the way. Learning shamanic techniques will give you the tools to get your energy flowing freely.

THE CURRICULUM

Following is a list of subjects that are available in the Online Shamanic Apprentice Program:

1 GENERAL SHAMANIC
____ Shamanism & the Medicine Wheel
____ Shamanic Journeys: The 3 Worlds, OR & NOR
____ Power Animal Retrieval
____ Dancing Your Power Animal
____ Shamanic Tools: Drum & Rattle
____ Skeleton Dance
____ Smudging
____ Opening & Closing Sacred Space
____ Power Song & Passing Power
____ Entities & Protection
____ Entity Extraction – Crystalized and Fluid
____ Soul Retrieval
____ Psychopomp Work: Eulogy & Soul Flight
____ Working with Nature Spirits – Plant Spirit Guide
____ Ethical & Legal Issues for Shamanic Practitioners

2 ANDEAN SHAMANIC
____ The Q’ero
____ Q’ero Cosmology by the Numbers
____ Inka Archetypes
____ Tracking with Archetypes
____ The Mesa
____ The Khuyas
____ The Chumpis
____ Munay Ki
____ Build a Mesa: Inform Stones 1-12
____ Mesa Divination
____ Mesa Manifestation & Tawantinsuyu Cosmology
____ Mesa Huaca
____ Apu Calling and Energy Field Clearing
____ Qosqo & Poq’po Exercise – Hucha Mikuy

3 ENERGY MEDICINE
____ Energy Medicine: The Energy Body & The Physical Body
____ Energy Systems & Exercises
____ Grounding & Running Energy
____ Cutting Cords
____ Body Stories
____ Meridian Tapping
____ Aikido – Breath & Ha! Exercise

4 METAPHYSICAL
____ Components That Make Up Who We Are
____ Levels of Beliefs
____ Ways of Perceiving & Projecting
____ The Sensory System
____ Muscle Testing
____ Using Pendulums
____ Crystal Gridding
____ Soul Stages & Levels
____ Vibration Scale of Consciousness
____ Time Frequencies
____ Ascension
____ Lightworkers & Light Beings
____ Symptoms of Spiritual Awakening
____ DNA Activation
____ Divination Techniques
____ Reincarnation & Journey to the Afterlife
____ Two Spirits & Gender Energy Quotient
____ Structural Clearing & Blessing
____ Magical Names (Bean Naming Ceremony)
____ Spiritual Bypass & Spiritual Arrogance
____ Ecstatic Postures & Mudras

5 CEREMONY
____ Despacho
____ Fire Ceremony

6 HEALING TECHNIQUES
____ Chakras & Auras – Repairing & Healing
____ Soul Clearing Techniques
____ Sandpainting

7 SPIRIT CRAFTS
____ Spirit Traps
____ Mojo Bags
____ Corn Husk Dolls
____ Candle Dressing
____ Prayer Stick
____ Medicine Bag
____ Prayer Ties

8 OTHER
____ Anointing
____ Letter of Manifestation
____ Creating Core Statements
____ Forgiveness Exercises
____ Vows & Contracts
____ Journal Quest
____ Self-Referencing Exercise
____ Role Exercise
____ Tarot Exercise

Copyright © 2015 Drake Bear Stephen. Except where acknowledged. www.DrakeInnerprizes.com

Journal Quest

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WHAT IS VISION QUEST?

A vision quest is a Native American rite of passage, similar to an initiation. In traditional the Lakota culture, Hanblecheyapi (crying for a vision) is one of seven sacred rites. A vision quest is a journey alone into the wilderness to seek personal growth and spiritual guidance from Great Spirit. The seeker finds a special place and sits in a rectangle, approximately 4-6’ wide and 6-8’ long. Usually the seeker brings nothing with them except water and a blanket. A usual vision quest lasts 4 days within this rectangle. The isolation in nature and the associated hunger is designed to trigger a vision or a message from Great Spirit. Visions from a quest can guide an individual for a lifetime.

Vision quest is a time of transition, a death or ending of something old, and a passage to new beginnings. In that respect, preparation for quest is a psychological grieving process. Thus vision quest is done with great sacredness.
Anthropologists have identified three universal stages of vision quest:

1. Severance (Departure) – Severance begins as soon as you answer the call to quest. You prepare to die to an old life as the unknown awaits you. To prepare emotionally, you must be willing to separate, detach, and let go of the old.

2. Threshold (Trial/Initiation/Transformation) – This is the time of aloneness, hunger, exposure and the trials that test your spirit and your purpose. Threshold is entering into sacred space, ritual and ceremony, and being with Great Spirit, one on one. You must empty out that which no longer serves you before you can be filled with something new. You awaken to a new way of seeing.

3. Incorporation (Return) – A quest never really ends because the vision is brought back to make your life better and to create changes for you and your people.

The goals and purposes of a vision quest include:

1. Gaining power and clarity through self-discovery of life goals and purposes.

2. Healing emotions, relationships, and illness.

3. Receiving a vision or message that will spiritual helps your soul.

4. Develops self-confidence by surviving in the wilderness and your fears alone.

5. Strengthens connections to your higher self, spirit guides, nature, Great Spirit, and Mother Earth.

6. Taps directly into your own source of wisdom assistance from books, churches, or teachers.

7. Fosters a greater appreciation of life after the temporary deprival of material comforts.

Vision quest is not only a Native American tradition. A very famous vision quest was done by Usui Mikao, a Japanese doctor. During his 21 day fast on Mount Kurama, he received the wisdom of Reiki.

In Buddhism, a peaceful warrior is defined as one who is willing to know oneself and willing to face one’s fears. This is the intent of vision quest in a nutshell. Change your perception, change your life.

WHAT IS A JOURNAL QUEST?

In 2008, I did a vision quest at Mount Shasta, spending 4 days and 3 nights in a small square encircled by 808 prayer ties. Preparation and execution of vision quest is quite rigorous. A seeker sits in sweat lodge before entering the sacred space and sits in sweat lodge again when returning and before breaking fast. It is a very powerful experience. However, not all are able or willing to undertake this intense journey.

I believe that there are other roads that can be traveled to obtain the same results. For one, someone might consider camping out in their back yard for several days. Another way is to take a shamanic transformation class most commonly marketed as “going around the medicine wheel”.

I combined the intent of self-discovery with the art of journaling to create a “journal quest”. The journal becomes a record of your journey of self-discovery and revelation. By examining the deepest, darkest recesses of your soul and bringing your secrets into the light, a transformation of vision occurs. I have prepared a series of questions designed to prompt a self-examination. My integration stage includes a ritual to anchor your vision in the material world.

The benefits of journal quest is that it is done at home, in your own time, and at your own pace.

I expanded the three stages of vision quest (Severance, Threshold, and Return) to four, so that the model represents the four directions, hence a medicine wheel of transformation. The four stages are:

1. Initiation – South Direction. Know Yourself.
2. Foundation – West Direction. Love Yourself.
3. Transformation – North Direction. Be Yourself.
4. Integration – East Direction. Share Yourself.

INSTRUCTIONS

The only materials required for journal quest are a journal and pens. However, additional items that support the journey are music that entrains the brain or shamanic journey drumming or rattling tracks that facilitate dropping into a beta brainwave state that facilitates deeper meditation.

Journal quest can be customized to your style and needs. Associated activities might include:

1. Creating a vision altar placing items that represent your intent for this journey. Perhaps finding a vision stone in nature, lighting a candle, placing cornmeal, sage, tobacco, flowers, herbs, crystals, and/or prayer ties as offerings.

2. Creating a vision stick decorating it with feathers and other natural items. Focus on the intent of your journey as you create the stick.

3. Creating a small sacred circle with rocks or crystals to sit in just as you would on a vision quest.

4. Taking an Epsom salt/herb bath before and after the journey. (This is a substitute for sweat lodge.)

5. Opening sacred space.

6. Saying a prayer requesting clear vision or messages. (see below)

7. Doing your journey in isolation, perhaps taking a day or two from your schedule to do nothing but focus on your journey.

8. Fasting during this time to intensify your experience is also an option.

9. Do some drumming, rattling, singing, chanting, or dancing.

10. Fire ceremony to conclude the quest, burning petition papers so that your prayers and intentions are taken on the smoke to the spirit world to be manifested.

While journaling, sit, meditate, breathe, be, think, watch, listen, feel, surrender, be in the present moment with no judgment, expectations, or goals.

I offer the questions and mentoring support for your journal quest. If you are interested, please contact me.

SAMPLE VISION PRAYER

Heya, Great Spirit, Ancestors, and Spirit Guides. I feel you here with me, showing me the way and sharing your wisdom. I open my heart, mind, and soul to your spirit voices. Open the doors of opportunity as I am ready to step through them. Let me meet my guides and be shown a vision to help me as I travel my path and live my purpose in this lifetime. Protect me from my fears and any harm that might come to me. I have so much love and gratitude for all my spirit guides and teachers who help my Highest Good. Thank you, Great Spirit, for the clear vision that I will have. Let my love and gratitude float on the four winds to the corners of the Universe. Aho!

QUOTES

When you begin to feel you are a spiritual being which, in fact, you are, you begin to activate the medicine wheel in your life. –Tony Ten Fingers

ON VISION QUEST

Vision without action is merely a dream. Action without vision just passes the time. Vision with action can change the world. –Joel Barker

Vision is not forecasting the future. Nor is it walking around with your head in the clouds or peering into crystal balls. It is a creative act. It is creating the future by taking action in the present. –Jim Collins

What I hear is valueless; only what I see is living and when I close my eyes my vision is even more powerful. –Giorgio de Chirico

I started concentrating so hard on my vision that I lost sight. –Robin Green

Your vision will become clear only when you look into your heart. Who looks outside, dreams. Who looks inside, awakens. –Carl Jung

Vision is the art of seeing things invisible. –Jonathan Swift

The nature of the cosmos is such that whatever vision you have about yourself and the world will become reality. Whether we realize it or not, we are all dreaming the world into being. When we’re unaware that we share the power to co-create reality with the universe itself that power slips away from us, causing our dream to become a nightmare. –Alberto Villoldo

Vision does not truly exist because it is ever changing. The vision is really the journey. And your journey is now. –Stalking Wolf

ON JOURNALING

Writing makes a map and there is something about a journey that begs to have its passage marked. –Christina Baldwin

Journal writing is a voyage to the interior. –Christina Baldwin

You are conversing with someone much wiser and saner as you write: your authentic self. –Sarah Ban Breathnach

To have some account of my thoughts, manners, acquaintance and actions, when the hour arrives in which time is more nimble than memory, is the reason which induces me to keep a journal: a journal in which I must confess my every thought, must open my whole heart! –Frances Burney

Writing is medicine. It is an antidote to injury. It is a companion for any difficult change. –Julia Cameron

Writing is a means of prayer. It connects us to the invisible world. It gives us a gate or a conduit for the other world to talk to us whether we call it the subconscious, the unconscious, the superconscious, the imagination, or the muse. Writing is a spiritual housekeeper. –Julia Cameron

Writing is a spiritual tool. We undertake it solo (soul-o). Moving alone onto the page, we often find ourselves companioned by higher forces, by a stream of insights and inspirations that seem somehow other than our routine thinking. –Julia Cameron

Your own words are the bricks and mortar of the dreams you want to realize. Your words are the greatest power you have. The words you choose and use establish the life you experience. –Sonia Choquette

The soul lies buried in the ink that writes. –John Clare

The palest ink is better than the best memory. –Confucius

We do not write in order to be understood. We write in order to understand. –Cecil Day-Lewis

A journal is a book that is entirely yours. It not only belongs to you, it is you… the best you, the worst you. –Charlene Geiss & Claudia Jessup

When we write from experience we harvest our lives. –Bonni Goldberg

Journaling connects me with my inner self; it’s like a safe harbor for expression and privacy. –Sondra Holtzman

Every person is a book yearning to be written. Journaling your life will give you the edge to rediscover yourself through the creative power of your journal or diary. –Journaling Your Life

Every minute of our lives is so precious. By documenting those moments, journals can give us wonderful glimpses into our souls, hearts, and minds. –Kelly TM Kilmer

Telling a true story about personal experience is not just a matter of being oneself or even finding oneself, it is also a matter of choosing oneself. –Harriet Goldhor Lerner

For $10 a journal you can be your own self-analyst. It’s the cheapest therapy a person can do. –Janice Lowry

I will write myself into well-being. –Nancy Mair

We write to taste life twice, in the moment and in retrospection. We write to be able to transcend our life, to reach beyond it. We write to teach ourselves to speak with others, to record the journey into the labyrinth. –Anais Nin

Leave self-consciousness at the gate. A journal’s destination is itself. –Jean Francois Podevin

Live life then write it. –Dan Price

Once you begin to keep a journal, the entire world and everything in it instantly becomes material to be observed, written about, drawn, photographed, or collected in some manner. –Dan Price

Seems like most of the good journal keepers are collectors. They have a passion for noticing and gathering all those things of value to them. Collectors of life you might say. When you decide to look at the world in this new way, life become an adventure, because you are always on a treasure hunt, saving things. –Dan Price

A journal is like pages from your soul. A journal is an interior journey. –Sark

Your Journal … It’s not just a book. It is a part of you; a place you can share your innermost thoughts, feelings and reflections. Your Journal is the repository of your experiences. It becomes a guide, a mirror … a confidant and friend. It is important to have a journal that is a statement of who you are. –Gerry Starnes

RECOMMENDED READING

ON VISION QUEST

The Sacred Journey: A Quest for Vision – Carol Hannagan
Quest: A Guide for Creating Your Own Quest – Denise Linn
Book of Vision Quest – Stephen Foster & Meredith Little
The Trail to the Sacred Mountain: A Vision Fast Handbook for Adults – Steven Foster & Meredith Little
Vision Quest – Wolf Moondance

ON JOURNALING

Journal to the Self: Twenty-Two Paths to Personal Growth – Open the Door to Self-Understanding by Writing, Reading, and Creating a Journal of Your Life – Kathleen Adams
Keeping a Journal You Love – Sheila Bender
The Artful Journal: A Spiritual Quest – Maureen Carey & Raymond Fox
Writing Down Your Soul: How to Activate and Listen to the Extraordinary Voice Within – Janet Conner
Journalution: Journaling to Awaken Your Inner Voice, Heal Your Life and Manifest Your Dreams – Sandy Grason
Writing Begins with the Breath: Embodying Your Authentic Voice – Laraine Herring
Spiritual Journaling: Writing Your Way to Independence – Julie Tallard Johnson
Complete Idiot’s Guide to Journaling – Joan Neubauer
Journaling Basics: Journal Writing for Beginners – Lisa Shea

Copyright © 2015 Drake Bear Stephen. Except where acknowledged. www.DrakeInnerprizes.com

 

Gender Shamanism

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ChacarunaSML

WHAT IS GENDER SHAMANISM?
A very close teacher and friend of mine, who is a pioneer in erotic spiritual work with gay males, once dubbed me a “gender shaman”. Great, I really liked that term of honor but what did it mean? And did it really apply to me? I had never heard anyone else talk about gender shamanism. Yes, there is a person who calls himself the “sexual shaman” but I’ve never heard of any gender shamans. It’s taken me a couple of years and a lot of speaking about gender journeys to finally step into what I think that means.

To begin, let’s look at the basic definitions of gender and shamanism separately, then we will move into the syncretized definition of gender shamanism.

GENDER
The on-line dictionary defines “gender” as “the socially constructed roles and behaviors that a society typically associates with males and females”. Volumes have been written about what gender is including my own book, Soul Sex, which focuses on the concepts of gender fluidity. Our consciousness about gender is moving away from the old binary system of only two options, male and female, into a recognition that there are many gender identities.

Kate Bornstein, in My Gender Workbook, says in jest that there exists only one gender – yours. But another quote from her book by t@whateversusan says, “gender is neither a binary nor a spectrum but an entire galaxy full of stars.” I will go deeper into the wide array of gender identities in the gender shamanism section below.

SHAMANISM
The word “shaman” originated from the Siberian word “saman”, meaning “one who knows” or “seer”. The word “shaman” spread from the Russians to the Americas via anthropologists. The word “shaman” is often substituted or is considered synonymous with medicine person, witch, wizard, sorcerer, magician, seer, sage, healer, herbalist, dream interpreter, priest/priestess, and/or spiritual adviser.

Shamanism is a healing practice that has been in existence for at least 10,000 years and perhaps as far back as 50,000 years ago. Shamanism is not a religion and does not have dogma. Shamanic healing is a form of energy and/or spiritual healing.

A great book to read about basic shamanism is The Hollow Bone by Colleen Deatsman. She says, “The role of shaman can encompass a wide range of services and duties, which, vary from shaman to shaman and culture to culture.”

The following characteristics are present in all shamanic cultures:

1. Journeying to other dimensions to retrieve a solution or lost soul parts for dis-ease, injuries, and trauma.

2. Extracting spirit intrusions that have entered or been sent into the body and are causing dis-ease or accidents.

GENDER SHAMANISM
“He [a wintke, berdache, two spirit] told me that if nature puts a burden on a man by making him different, it also gives him a power.” This quote is from a Lakota man named John Lame Deer. Two Spirit is the modern term for dual-sexed or third gender individuals that were treated as sacred by over 155 North American indigenous tribes. The third gender is comprised of individuals that have a gender identity that is neither male nor female or both male and female. Two Spirits have the following characteristics:

  • Possess non–conforming gender and/or sexual identities. Two Spirits have an even balance of male and female energy. They express themselves outside the traditional binary gender roles in temperament, dress, lifestyle, and social roles. They may specialize in non–traditional gender role work by taking on roles viewed as belonging to the “opposite” of their birth assigned sex.
  • Are a member of an indigenous culture. Indigenous means living naturally or being native to an area. It is an innate awareness of belonging to a specific geography. The indigenous–identified soul is consciously aware of the spirit of the Earth and everything on it. To North American Indians, being a Two Spirit means having Native American bloodlines.
  • Hear the call of Spirit. Two Spirits are spiritually connected through beliefs, visions, and dreams. They often become healers, counselors, therapists, high religious priests and priestesses, shamans, witch doctors, medicine people, holy people, or prophets.

Unfortunately, the introduction of Christianity by missionaries and the influx of white settlers virtually destroyed the acceptance of Two Spirits in North American native life. However, the existence of third gender individuals occurs in many cultures all over the world, from ancient times to modern times, including: the Arctic, Borneo, Burma, Canaan, the Cook Islands, ancient Greece, Hawai’i, India, Italy, Latin and South America, Mesopotamia, Mexico, the Middle East, New Zealand, Pakistan, the Philippines, Phoenicia, ancient Rome, Samoa, Siberia, Sumer, ancient Syria, Thailand, and Tonga.

The Dagara tribe of West Africa believe that gender is energetic and sexuality is spiritually based. Individuals with alternative gender and sexual identities have a specific spiritual role because with the ability to stand between the world of male and female, they experience a state of vibrational consciousness which allows them to stand between this world and the spirit world. This place between the worlds is called the gates and these individuals are the guardians of the gates.

One of the requirements of medicine people and shamans is that they have the ability to walk between many worlds. In Siberia, shamans–to–be must spend time living in both genders. This includes dressing as a member of the “opposite” birth assigned sex. Many shamans adopt these androgynous roles for the rest of their lives. Consequently, they are considered to have special magical powers and responsibilities. The Russian term “schupan” means “a gender transformed shaman”.

Daan van Kampenhout, author of several books on shamanism, describes Siberian shamanic costumes as being androgynous so that the wearer understands the totality of all human experience, through living as both a male and a female. He says:

“As part of the training of the shaman–to–be, he or she was expected to live for some time as a member of the opposite sex. During this period, the aspirant had to think, act and dress like a man if she was a woman, like a woman if he was a man. Often, a person who successfully passed this part of their shamanic examination would choose to continue living as a member of the other sex. In some parts of Siberia, this was even expected of all male shamans. Many traditional shamanic cultures offered their homosexual members the possibility of living with a partner: a gay or lesbian could become a shaman and change sex, afterwards being able to marry a person of the same biological sex. Usually such transformed shamans would be looked upon with awe, fear or suspicion. They were considered to have very strong and special magical powers and carried distinctive and important responsibilities, yet their shaman costumes were androgynous.”

WHAT IS A CHACARUNA?

I consider a Gender Shaman to be a Chacaruna (Bridge Person). A Chacaruna is a Quechuan* word that means one who crosses from one state of consciousness to others as well as helping others to connect to the spirit world. A Chacaruna is the connector/networker between multiple worlds. They must connect the worlds of:

1. Male and Female to include all gender variations
2. Gay and Straight to include all sexual orientations
3. Heaven and Earth
4. Ordinary Reality and Non-ordinary Reality
5. Life and Death
6. Past, Present, and Future Lives
7. The Body, Mind, and Heart
8. The Middle, Lower, and Upper Shamanic Worlds
9. The First, Second, Third, Fourth, and Fifth Dimensions

*Quechuan is the language of the Q’ero people that live in the high Andes of Peru. 500 years ago they were the spiritual advisers to the Inka.

A Chacaruna must know that the passages between the worlds are two way streets and that the various worlds (dimensions) exist in parallel. There is no hierarchy of the various worlds.

Who better to be a Chacaruna than someone that has lived in multiple worlds in one lifetime and over multiple lifetimes? An individual that has non-conforming or alternative gender and sexual identities has learned to be a walker between the worlds. Not only have I lived a non-conforming life of multiple genders, multiple sexual orientations, and multiple spiritual perspectives in one lifetime, but I have done extensive research in gender and sexuality studies. These experiences have not only created a power of empathy I use in my healing sessions, but as a walker between worlds, I benefit from the ability to see from multiple perspectives. Like a remote viewer, I can see events and situations from my and others’ viewpoint simultaneously.

So, not only does gender bring spiritual medicine to shamanism but shamanism brings spiritual medicine to gender studies by overlaying gender identity with spiritual perspectives and associated ceremonies.

I guess it was no accident that hearing about Two Spirits led me to shamanism, which is a form of energy work that I deeply resonate with. Working in the field of gender shamanism allows me to combine my top three passions: past life therapy, shamanic energy medicine, and gender/sexuality studies. I have applied my shamanic and metaphysical background to develop new views about gender and sexual identity. I believe I am now ready to step into the “shoes” of a gender shaman.

GENDER JOURNEY WORKSHOP

In order to raise consciousness about the metaphysics of gender, I have created a presentation and all-day workshop called Gender Journey: Integrating the Divine Masculine and Feminine. One exercise I facilitate is called the Gender Energy Quotient, where we learn to read the percent of masculine and feminine energy in ourselves and others. Each time I have done a presentation, I know my audience never sees themselves or others the same way afterwards. I also employ guided meditations and other exercises to help individuals integrate their Divine Masculine and Feminine. If you are interested in hosting or attending a workshop, please contact me.

Copyright © 2015 Drake Bear Stephen. Except where acknowledged. www.DrakeInnerprizes.com

Trans* Rights Now

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Trans Rights
Now It’s Our Turn! Trans* Human Rights Now!

We’ve waited patiently while we have watched the progression of human rights expand to other minority and non-mainstream groups. First it was the women’s liberation and the black civil rights movement. Then it was the gay rights movement culminating in the right to marry. We understand that there is much additional work to achieve full acceptance in all of those movements.

But now it is our turn! It is a sad fact that there are groups of people that do not experience rights and protections under the law because that is an entitlement of ALL humans. We demand (because if we politely requested or asked it just wouldn’t happen) the following:

1. Insure trans-inclusive equal rights protection under the law including hate crime protection and non-discrimination on the job, in schools, in medical care, and in housing. Under Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 add “gender identity” and “sexual orientation” to: It is illegal to discriminate against someone on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, or sex.

2. Pass legislation (like at least seven other countries) that provides the ability to declare oneself as third gender or gender “X” on all legal papers including birth certificates and passports.

3. Pass legislation (like Argentina), whereby any individual can change their legal papers to reflect their gender identity without medical treatment including hormone therapy or sterilization, divorce, or the approval of gatekeepers (doctors, lawyers, or therapists).

4. Remove “Gender Dysphoria” as a mental disorder from the American Psychiatric Association’s DSM (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders). Remove “Transsexualism”, “Transvestism”, “Intersex”, and “Gender Identity Disorders” from the UN’s World Health Organization’s ICD (International Classification of Diseases).

5. Stop performing genital “corrective” surgery on infants or children before their gender identity has developed and they are able to choose the course of action (if any) of their own physical body.

6. Provide gender neutral restrooms at all public venues and/or provide protection for any individual that uses the public restroom of their gender identity.

Copyright © 2015 Drake Bear Stephen. Except where acknowledged. www.DrakeInnerprizes.com

Return to the Goddess: Integrating the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine

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This article is a prequel to the sequel of my book, Soul Sex. When I volunteered to do a workshop on the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine, I realized I did not know enough about what that really meant. My research to learn more about it led me into the subject of the Goddess and opened an entire new world of ideas to me. There is so much I decided to create the Soul Sex sequel, a workbook dedicated to integrating the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine. The following are a few ideas that resulted from my research.

WHAT IS THE DIVINE MASCULINE & THE DIVINE FEMININE?

I had a hard time finding a true definition of what the Divine Masculine and Feminine is. I finally settled on the following: masculine and feminine is a gender-based attribute associated with human qualities. Divine masculine and feminine is the highest and best qualities associated with each gender stereotype.
What makes a characteristic masculine or feminine? One way to categorize human qualities as masculine or feminine is based on which gender we believe has the preponderance of a certain characteristic. However, if we all sat in a room and categorized qualities as masculine or feminine, I am betting there would be some disagreement because bottom line, what we consider masculine or feminine, is based on our own personal perception. And, our perception of another’s degree of masculinity or femininity is based on what we believe ourselves to be. In other words, someone that you might consider feminine might be more feminine than you are as feminine as you are. And vice versa, if you consider someone masculine, it is because they are more masculine than or as masculine as you feel you are.

Not only is our perception of gender qualities based on our own identity but it is also very much related to cultural beliefs. Masculine and feminine qualities are not universal but differ not only from culture to culture but over time as well.

The history of gender associations with the colors blue and pink is a good example of perception shifting over time. Color distinctions for boys and girls did not develop until the early 1900s. Until then, all infants were dressed alike and mostly in white. Until 1939, pink, because it was close to the color red, was a boys’ color and blue was a girls’ color. After World War II, blue became a boy’s color and pink became a girls’ color.

In time of the Goddess, She was represented as Heaven and the Sun and her male consort was represented by the Earth and Moon. During the last 2000 years, these representations flipped and the God is now represented by Heaven and Sun and the feminine side of God as Earth and Moon.

Below is a list of stereotypical qualities I found that are associated with the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine. Read through the list and see how many of these you concur with. I, myself, found a lot of these to be androgynous or neutral. In other words, they apply equally to both males and females.

Divine Masculine
Healthy Attributes: active, adventurous, analytical, capable, consistent, courageous, determined, disciplined, decisive, fearless, focused, goal-oriented, heroic, intelligent, linear, logical, loyal, ordered, practical, predictable, protective, provider, powerful, rational, reliable, rugged, sensible, single-minded, smart, stable, strong

Unhealthy Attributes: aggressive, autocratic, authoritative, closed-minded, controlling, dogmatic, dominating, heartless, non-communicative, rigid, rule-bound, ruthless, self-centered, stubborn, tough, violent

Divine Feminine
Healthy Attributes: adaptable, beautiful, caring, care-giving, creative, ever-changing, fertile, flexible, forgiving, gentle, inspirational, intuitive, kind, loving, mysterious, nurturing, open-minded, passive, patient, peaceful, playful, receptive, serving, soft, spontaneous, sweet, tender, understanding, warm, wise, yielding

Unhealthy Attributes: ambiguous, bitchy, controlling, emotional, fickle, illogical, indecisive, irrational, manipulative, powerless, pushy, stupid, unpredictable, weak

Below is a table of comparisons of beliefs between the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine:

DIVINE FEMININE
Communalism, Cooperation
Union / Oneness
Archetypes: Goddess, Queen, Priestess, Warrioress, Lover, Wise Woman, Muse
Unmanifested Matter
Compassionate Love
Electrical Side
Stillness, Presence
Receiving, Receptivity
Darkness
Growth from Support & Praise
Earth & Water
Moon

DIVINE MASCULINE
Capitalism, Competition
Separate / Duality
Archetypes: God, King, Priest, Warrior, Lover, Sage, Magician
Manifested Matter
Ecstatic Love
Magnetic Side
Action
Obtaining, Expression
Light
Growth from Challenge
Air & Fire
Sun

WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN GODDESS WORSHIP AND GOD WORSHIP?

I am fairly familiar with what it is like to live in a God-worshipping patriarchal culture. What I felt was completely unknown to me was Goddess-worshipping matriarchal culture. In my research I was looking for the sociology of Goddess culture. In other words, what were the characteristics of living in the time of the Goddess? How did they worship? What did they believe? How did they live? What did they do?

Perhaps because most of the Goddess cultures existed so far back in history, many of it before the written word, this information just doesn’t exist. Also a lot of information was destroyed during the transition from Goddess worshiping societies to the Judeo-Christian-Islam societies of the past 2000 years. Perhaps the bulk of what we can know is what archeologists and anthropologists can gather from pottery shards and statues.

The Goddess is immanent and embodies the Divine as female. She is in Nature, the Earth, and the Universe. One who worships the Goddess may be called a Goddessian. According to Judith Laura in Goddess Matters: The Mystical Practical & Controversial, the subsets of Goddessian worship are:

– Matrist – The Great Mother or other Mother imagery
– Dianic – The Maiden
– Kalian – The Crone
– Tripletarian – The Triple Goddess: Maiden, Mother, and Crone
– Kwantarist – Asian Goddesses
– Guadalupista or Guadalupera – Central and South American Goddesses
– Asherastarite – Ancient Near East Goddesses
– Willendorfian – European Neolithic Goddesses
– Gaians – Earth-based Spirituality and Environment
– Isian – Egyptian Goddesses especially Isis

I have started a comparison of characteristics of the worship of the Goddess and God as shown here on the table below.

GODDESS WORSHIP
Immanent – The Divine is located within every person, animal, plant, the Earth,          and the Universe
Polytheistic, Pantheistic, Panentheistic
Matriarchy, Matrilineal, Matriotism
Philogynist, Women are equal or dominant
Sexuality is natural & sacred
Congregation is in a circle
Congregation shares thoughts
All are equal in spiritual authority
Leadership is rotated
Congregants are equally connected
Conducted through rituals and celebrations
Little to no dogma or book of rules
Holistic thinking
Body affirming
Earth centered
In right relationship with Nature

GOD WORSHIP
Transcendent – The Divine is located outside (usually above) the material world
Monotheistic, sometimes Henotheistic
Patriarch, Patrilinear, Patriotism
Misogynist, Women are a lower caste
Sexuality is sinful & shameful
Congregation faces a pulpit
Congregation listens to a sermon
One individual (male) is considered specially ordained
Leadership is fixed (usually a sole male)
Congregants are in a fixed hierarchy
Conducted by worship
Much dogma and many rules
Dualistic thinking
Body denying
Heaven centered
Rules over Nature

Even though patriarchal God-worship has dominated much of the world the past 2000 years, they do have Divine Feminine aspects within them. Most likely they have been carried over from the earlier Goddess-worshipping cosmologies. The following religions have the presence of the Divine Feminine within them:

RELIGION                 DIVINE FEMININE
Taoist                         Yin
Kabbalah                    Shekhina
Gnostic                       Sophia
Buddhist                     Praj-na-para-mita (wisdom)
Christian                    Grace & Faith
Catholic                      Mother Mary & Virgin Mary

A SHORT HISTORY OF SPIRITUAL ENERGY MANIFESTED ON EARTH

Goddess worship can be dated as far back as 33,000 years ago. It would be natural to see the Divine as Feminine at that time. The people were very in tune with the Earth and Nature. They had no modern comforts such as structures to separate them from the natural elements. Survival was dependent on hunting and gathering skills. It probably was not known what the male’s role in procreation was. So the female was the one with the power to procreate. Societies were matrilineal and matrifocal (see reference glossary at the end). Eventually agricultural skills and domestication of animals were added to hunting and gathering skills. Nomadic lifestyles were replaced by life in villages. Societies were communal. Food and property were shared. The Goddess was the main deity. The Divine Masculine was present as her lower ranked male consort.

Goddess worship was dominant around the world throughout the Stone, Copper, and Bronze Ages. This was also the Age of Leo, Cancer, Gemini, and Taurus. In the transition from the Bronze Age to the Iron Age, which was also the shift into the Age of Aries, metal tools and weapons were invented. This was accompanied not only by a rise in warfare and aggression, but in the ways of living, and shifts in spiritual beliefs. The surplus of material goods and animals began to be accumulated and hoarded by individuals. Men, being physically bigger and stronger, were the most powerful at gathering wealth. In order to protect their property, God worship, with the Divine Masculine as the dominant force, and consequently rules and restrictions against the Goddess, increased rapidly. Most of today’s religious factions began in this period of time, including Hinduism, Buddhism, Judaism, Islam, and Christianity.

There was a brief time when the God and Goddess co-ruled. This was the time of the Greek and Roman Pantheons. Also Hinduism has a good balance of Gods, Goddesses, and even many Androgynous deities. However, the Hebrews believed that there was only one true deity and most of the laws set forth in the Torah, and subsequently the Bible, were specifically designed to “kill” off Goddess worship and lower the status of women to be below men. With the dawn of the Age of Pisces, the patriarchy of Christianity came into full power.

I have created a graphic representation of the historical timeline of religions and ages. Anodea Judith, in her book The Global Heart Awakens, overlaid the chakra system on the timeline of human history. The first and second chakras were at their peak during the time of the Goddess. The third chakra rose to its peak during the rise of God worship, specifically monotheism. We are just now entering into the energy of the fourth chakra. It seems to be no coincidence that it is timed with the onset of the ascension energy and the Age of Aquarius that we are now transitioning into.

Timeline

Deepak Chopra, in his new book The Future of God, explains his concept of the progression of spiritual energy on Earth as:

God 1.0 – The last 2000 years of religious belief that God is the Father, the big man in the sky that was created in our image. His role is the supreme lawgiver, the divine protector, the punisher, and the loving father image.

God 2.0 – Humans are shifting into the belief that God is the “interface between us and infinite consciousness”. Characteristics of those that are experiencing God 2.0 include: becoming centered, gaining self-awareness, experiencing higher consciousness and more purpose, enlightenment, and merging with the source [pure consciousness].

Chopra says that God 1.0 is a noun. God 2.0 is a process, a verb.

What Chopra left out of his book is Goddess 1.0, what I call the period of Goddess worship that predated God 1.0. In addition, I believe in order to achieve the level of consciousness that Chopra refers to, we must reframe God 2.0 to encompass the energy of both the God and the Goddess. Perhaps it would be more accurate to call it Androgyne 1.0, because it is the Androgyne that is gender neutral; that embodies all of the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine qualities. The Androgyne is the Divine Marriage of the Masculine and Feminine. It is the Divine Androgyne that is the energy in alchemy that can ascend back to the spirit world.

God 2.0 must include the Return of the Goddess. The patriarchy and monotheism of the past 2000 years has created an incredibly unbalanced energy on Earth. India is the only country where the Divine Feminine is worshipped today by a large number of people.

The alchemical process of how the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine descend and re-ascend to the Spirit World (called the Logos) is shown in the diagram below. Spiritual energy (manifested as the Soul) descends to Earth as separate Masculine and Feminine energy. A Sacred Marriage of the two creates the birth of the Divine Androgyne (a unification of the Masculine and Feminine) who then ascends in Consciousness, returning to the Logos.

AlchemyIt is a principle of physics that anytime two separate energies merge, they create a third and more powerful field of energy. The Androgyne’s power is in this third, balanced energy field.

Sharon Mazer says that “this divine union relationship is a co-creative partnership of equality. The child of cosmic birth is referred to in alchemy as the True Self, and it is created from a union known as the sacred marriage of dualities. In the Greek alphabet, the letter Delta (triangle/triune) was the symbol for cosmic birth. The triangle can represent: father/mother/child or the Perfect Union of the Two that creates the Third or the perfect union when two become one.”

So Spirit, as represented in our Soul, evolves through the integration of the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine. I believe there are two ways to integrate these two energies:

1. Balancing the masculine and feminine within oneself as represented by Ardhanarisvara, a Hindu deity that is half male-half female.

Ardhanari2. Through relationship with a partner as represented by Shiva-Shakti blending the male-female within the posture of making love.

ShivaShaktiMazer believes that in order to experience a unified field with a partner, one must first connect with the internal qualities of masculine and feminine energy within one’s self.

THE FUTURE: WHERE ARE WE HEADED?

We are at the entrance into the Age of Aquarius. This will be a time of spirituality and transformation. Aquarians are psychic, magical, and spiritual. Old superstitions and dogmatic religions will die away as the Divine Awakening or Ascension occurs. It will be a time to celebrate diversity and individuality, peace and prosperity.

Lion Goodman says that as incarnated humans, we stand between the earth and the sky as a product of both mother and father. The soul, when not in human form, is a being of light and energy. It has no gender. Therefore, gender is a construct of incarnation and each of us carries the archetypes of the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine in our psyche.

Earth is moving away from its role of providing dualities for incarnated humans into being a place of connection and universal oneness. Merging the Divine Masculine and Divine Feminine is one of these dualities that will collapse to create a balanced Divine Androgyne.

Lion Goodman also says that in cultures where both male and female deities are worshipped, there is more parity between men and women. Right now our dear Mother Earth is suffering greatly from over-abundance of masculine energy and an under-abundance of feminine energy. If Earth is to survive, actually if we are to continue living on Her, we must bring the Divine Masculine into balance with the Divine Feminine. Let’s all welcome in the Age of the Aquarian Androgyne.

GLOSSARY

Patriarchy:
• A form of social organization in which the father or the eldest male is recognized as the head of the family or tribe, descent and kinship being traced through the male line.
• Government, rule, or domination by men, as in a family or tribe.

Matriarchy:
• A form of social organization in which the mother is recognized as the head of the family or tribe, descent and kinship being traced through the mother.
• Government, rule, or domination by women.

Matriotism:
• Devotion to Mother Earth, ecology, sustainability, peace and the survival of life and the human species.
• Love or celebration of women’s influence upon society; the feminine equivalent of male patriotism.

Patriotism:
• Love of country; devotion to the welfare of one’s compatriots; the passion which inspires one to serve one’s country.
• The desire to compete with other nations; nationalism.
• Love or celebration of men’s influence upon society; the masculine equivalent of female matriotism.

Matrifocal – A group, tribe or household led by a woman.

Matrilineal – Designating or of descent, kinship, or derivation through the mother.

Patrilineal – Designating or of descent, kinship, or derivation through the father.

Misandry/Misandrist – Hater of men.

Misogyny/Misogynist – Hater of women.

Philogyny – Love of or fondness for women.

Philandry – Love or fondness for men.

Androgyny – Both male and female in one; of or marked by a blend of male and female characteristics, roles.

Gyandrous – Exhibiting characteristics of both feminine and masculine.

Gynandromorphic – Having male and female characteristics.

Hemigynous – Exhibiting characteristics that are predominantly male. Possessing qualities that are half-woman; womanish.

Hemiandrous – Exhibiting characteristics that are predominantly female. Possessing qualities that are half-man; effeminate.

Androcentrism – An ideological focus on males and men, and issues affecting them, possibly to the detriment of non-males.

Gynocentricism – An ideological focus on females, and issues affecting them, possibly to the detriment of non-females.

Theology – The study of religious doctrines and matters of divinity; the study of God and the relations between God, humankind, and the universe.

Thealogy – The examination of doctrines, scriptures, and practices in various religions focusing especially on: the portrayal and voice of women in sacred writings and practices; the role of women in religion historically and at the present time; and conceptualizing and imaging of the divine. (Definition from Goddess Matters: The Mystical Practical & Controversial by Judith Laura.)

Henotheism – There may be more than one deity but only one is worshipped.

Monotheism: Only one deity is worshipped.

Panentheism: All life and life forms are encompassed within the Divine.

Polytheism: Many deities are worshipped.

Pantheism: The Divine is within all individual life forms including the Earth and the Universe.

Copyright © 2015 Drake Bear Stephen. Except where acknowledged. www.DrakeInnerprizes.com

Smudging Ceremony

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The dictionary defines smudge as “a fire made to produce dense smoke and smoke produced by burning a material in containers, especially for driving away insects or protecting plants from frost.” However, this article is about the act of smudging to cleanse, purify, and protect physical and spiritual bodies, to banish negative energies from structures and vehicles, and to create sacred space for ceremonial purposes.

Common ways to smudge include burning smudge sticks (herbs that are tied into a bundle), braided herbs and botanicals, or loose herbs (burned on charcoal or in a fire pit). Smudging releases the energy and fragrance of the herbs and botanicals so they can heal, cleanse, and purify.

Great respect should be given to the process of smudging for a relationship is being formed between you, the plant spirits, the Ancestors, and the Great Spirit. Each tool in the smudging process is associated with a different element:

  • The shell represents Water
  • The unlit herbs and ashes represent Earth
  • The lit herbs represent Fire
  • The smoke represents Air
  • Your prayer or intention represents Spirit

SPECIAL TIMES TO SMUDGE

Smudge at the new moon when you are starting a new project or celebrating a new beginning. Smudge at the first quarter moon when you are expanding your capabilities, increasing your prosperity, or taking action to change something in your life. Smudge at the full moon when you are leaving something or somewhere, moving, ending a relationship, or removing negative energies. Smudge at the last quarter moon to end a project, let go of a relationship, release karmic actions, or clear unwanted/unneeded energies.

TYPES OF SMUDGE

There are two main types of smudging materials: smoking (such as burning herbs and resins) and smokeless (such as sprays or unlit plants). Below is a list of materials traditionally used for smudging:

SMOKING

Smudge Sage Sage is used to drive out evil spirits, negative thoughts and feelings, and to keep negative entities away. It is used as a smudge to purify the mind, body, and spirit before prayer, meditation, ritual, divination, or ceremony. Sage is also used to purify sacred items such as pipes, magical tools, tarot decks, crystals, and feathers. It can be used for individuals, vehicles, structures, and land. Sage can also be carried in a pocket or medicine pouch for personal and spiritual safety. White sage is considered the king if all sages because it has the strongest aromatic properties of all the sages.

Smudge Sweetgrass0 Sweetgrass is used to bring positive energy in after negative energies are banished by using sage. Sweetgrass invites the good spirits, ancestors, and spirit helpers. It is sometimes called the hair of Earth Mother and is braided before it is harvested.

Smudge Cedar The Evergreens (cedar, juniper and pinion pine) generally provide balance and harmony.

Cedar is used as a purifier, to attract good energy, for protection, and to decrease negativity.

Juniper restores balance; purifies and stimulates; attracts peace, happiness, and restful sleep; and aids in meditation, clairvoyance, and manifestation. Juniper can be used to call in loving energy and spirits. It was used to purify temples and to resist disease in ancient times.

Pinon is used to bring protection and to clear spaces of negative energy. A pile of needles can be burned in an abalone shell.

Smudge Tobacco3 Tobacco is a very sacred botanical in the Native American tradition. It amplifies prayers, provides healing and purification, extracts negativity in spiritual healings, and allows communication with spirits. It is used in healing by lighting and blowing smoke over the client. Lighting tobacco should always be done in a ceremonial manner.

Smudge Palo Santo Palo Santo (holy wood) is a tree that inhabits the South American Gran Chaco region (northern Argentina, Paraguay, Bolivia and Brazil) and Ecuador. The tree belongs to the same family as frankincense and myrrh. Palo Santo is burned to guard against bad energy and in extraction of foreign energies from the energy body.

HERBS and FLOWERS can also be burned in smudging ceremony. Although less commonly seen, these plants all have beneficial properties:

Lavender is useful for attracting peace and happiness; aiding meditation, divination and manifesting; and to call in fairies and elves.

Yerba Santa Leaves are used for enhancing psychic abilities, magical protection, meditation, divination, and healing and spiritual strength.

Rose Petals are used for attracting love, conferring peace, stimulating sexual appetites, enhancing beauty, meditation, divination, increasing psychic abilities, contacting beings in other dimensions, and psychic communication. Rose petals are used to call in the power of the heart.

Hibiscus Flowers are used in divination, psychic communication, rejuvenating the senses, and restoring life force.

Osha Root (Bear Root) is used for self-confidence, strength, and to invite bear spirit medicine.

Mugwort is used for divination, dreaming, prophecy, and divinatory success. Native American tribes rubbed mugwort on their bodies as protection from ghosts.

RESINS are burned on charcoal in incense burners.

Pinon is used to cleanse, strengthen, warm, refresh the senses, and revive a tired soul. If is used by Native American cultures for its spiritual and healing properties.

Copal is used for divination and cleansing. Copal is used by the Mesoamerican peoples. Mayan shamans use it prior to ingesting mushrooms.

Myrrh is used for spirituality, meditation, happiness, release, transformation, strength, confidence, and stability. The Egyptians used myrrh in healing and passing rituals and to embalm bodies.

Frankincense is used for meditation, healing, and to confer divine blessings.

SMOKELESS

Smokeless smudging can be used in places where smoke is not appropriate due to fire laws or individuals who have allergies to smoke. The smokeless smudges include:

Smudge Florida Water Florida Water (Agua de Florida) is a 19th century formula for eau de toilet that blends an array of floral essential oils in an alcohol base. The name refers to the fabled Fountain of Youth said to have been located in Florida. Florida Water is popular among South American and Caribbean cultures and is used in magical and ritual traditions including hoodoo. Other purposes it is used for are: phukuy (spitting with breath) to ritually clear individuals, objects, and areas; in scent bowls of water set out for the spirits of the dead; and in a spray bottle to cleanse the poq’po (energy bubble surrounding the human body).

Homemade Florida Water can be made by adding essential oils to a vodka base. The oils I use in my formula are: Angelica Root, Bergamot, Chamomile Roman, Clary Sage, Lavender, Rosemary Cineole, Rose Otto, and Ylang Ylang.

Smudge PaloSanto Spray Palo Santo Spray and Smudge Sage Spray Sage Spray can be bought commercially. They contain the essence of the plant and can be used for the same purposes as listed in the smoking smudge section above.

Freshly collected branches from Rosemary and Bay Laurel plants can be used to sweep or wipe down an individual, object, or area.

SMUDGING DIRECTIONS

LIGHTING SMOKING SMUDGES

1. Light the plant and wait for it to smolder, letting the smoke start to rise as it begins to carry your prayers to Great Spirit.

2. If using a smudge bowl, rub your hands in the smoke to cleanse them. If using a smudge stick, use a feather to direct the smoke.

3. Scoop the smoke in the following pattern to the 9 Directions:

  • To the 4 directions starting with the East, turning clockwise to the South, to the West and to the North.
  • Downwards to Mother Earth.
  • Upwards to Father Sky, Great Spirit, Grandmother Moon, Father Sun, Star Sisters and Brothers.
  • Inwards to your heart welcoming Connection, Presence, Balance, and Oneness.
  • Over the left shoulder to the Spirits.
  • Over the right shoulder to the Ancestors.

4. Say a prayer asking Great Spirit to remove all negativity and unwanted energies (see prayer section below).

SMUDGING YOURSELF

1. Breathe in the smudge, visualizing the smoke purifying your body from the inside.

2. Scoop the smoke to the following:

  • To the head, so you will think good thoughts.
  • To the eyes, so you see the truth.
  • To the throat so you will speak always speak in truth, in kindness, and in non-judgmental ways.
  • To the ears, so that you will truly listen and hear only the truth.
  • To the heart so you feel connected to all living beings in a loving way.
  • To the solar plexus so your emotions connect with the Earth Mother.
  • [if female] To the womb, so your life giving energies go out into the world in balance and harmony.
  • Under the feet to the dark side of your soul and to walk in peace.

SMUDGING OTHERS

1. The individual to be smudged should stand with feet slightly apart and arms spread slightly. They should remove hats. When you reach their feet, they should raise each one consecutively so that the smoke can swirl beneath the foot. Some individuals literally soak or bathe in the smoke.

2. With a feather, fan smoke towards the individual. Begin at the front at the head and work your way to the feet.

3. Repeat the process on the back of the individual.

4. You may want to end with a short prayer to Great Spirit for the individual.

SMUDGING STRUCTURES

1. Begin at the front door and work clockwise around the structure, through all rooms, opening all drawers and closets. Finish off the smudging process at the open front door.   OR:

2. Come to the center of the room. Turn to the East and fan smudge out into that direction 4 times, saying: Spirit of the East, Great Spirit of Air, cleanse and inspire this space.

3. Turn to the South and smudge 4 times, saying: Spirit of the South, Great Spirit of Fire, strengthen and bring peace to this space.

4. Now turn to the West and smudge 4 times, saying: Spirit of the West, Great Spirit of Water, energize and protect this space.

5. Turn to the North and smudge 4 times, saying: Spirit of the North, Great Spirit of Earth, ground and cleanse this space.

6. Squat towards the floor and send smudge down to the floor 4 times, saying: Great Mother Earth, nurture this space from below.

7. Return to your center position and look upwards, sending smudge up to the ceiling 4 times. Say: Great Father Sky, guard this space from above.

AVOID

Do not smudge where infants, pregnant women, asthmatic or allergy-prone individuals are present.

Avoid fire hazards by never leaving burning smudge or charcoal unattended.

Do not blow into a burning smudge mixture as it is seen as blowing in your one’s own negativity.

To extinguish a smudge stick quickly, tamp the end out in sand or soil. Do not use water.

FLORIDA WATER SMUDGE

1. Pour a small amount into your hand. Rub your hands together and clap loudly 3 times.

2. Inhale the vapors saying a prayer into your hands. Then brush these prayers over your body.

3. When done, blow the energy off your hands upwards towards Great Spirit.

SMUDGING PRAYERS

Here are a few prayers you can recite during smudging ceremonies.

PRAYER 1 by Unknown
Great Spirit, may my prayers travel up this smoke to you, that you may bring blessing and peace to [fill in the blank]. I know the blessings travel down through this smoke to me and I give thanks for the blessings received.

PRAYER 2 by Unknown
From the Element of Fire
Comes this smoke, which is Air.
From the Element of Earth
Grows this plant, which is Water.
I call upon the Elements and the Blessings of Spirit
To please cleanse this [area, space, being, etc.]
For the highest good of all.

PRAYER 3 by Travis Bowman
Great Spirit I come before you with an open heart, I ask that you cleanse this space and make it sacred.
May our hearts be cleansed that you might hear its messages clearly.
May our minds be cleansed so that we can function from the highest vibration.
May your eyes be cleansed so that we can see the signs and wonders around us.
May our mouths be cleansed so that we speak only truth and loving kindness.
May our throats be cleansed that we may speak rightly when our words are needed.
May our hands be cleansed so that we may create many beautiful things in your name.
May our feet be cleansed so that they may take us where we most need to be.
May our whole beings be cleansed and bathed in your beauty so we can be more like you.
May all who commune here and this page be washed clean by these smudging prayer intentions.
And may these same intentions carry our prayers to the heavens, so that we will know your life, light, strength and protection.
So be it!

RECOMMENDED READING

The Smudging & Blessings Book: Inspiration Rituals to Cleanse & Heal – Jane Alexander
Complete Book of Incense, Oils, & Brews – Scott Cunningham
Smudging & Incense Burning Essentials – Cassandra Eason
Incense & Incense Rituals – Thomas Kinkele
Sage & Smudge: The Ultimate Guide – Diane Ronngren

The Magic of the Mesa: Andean Medicine Bundles

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Mesa is a Spanish word that means “table”. In the Inka tradition, a mesa is an altar used for ceremonies and healing. Inside is a collection of sacred objects, including khuyas (stones), imprinted with energy. These sacred objects are wrapped in a mestana (Andean textile). The patterns woven into the mestana have meaning, intention, and energy, which interacts with the khuyas.

Mesa_2122
#1: Munay Mesa
My heart can be your mesa.
Drop in your weary stones of pain
And the seeds of love will grow.
Round and round we travel
On a heart-shaped wheel.
Let’s journey to new directions together.

Mesa_2125
#2: Mesa Skins
The skin of my mesa changes as my soul transforms.

Mesa_2123
#3: Paqo Bear’s Mesa
13 uses for the mesa include:

  1. By mocking up our intent, the mesa becomes a magnet that transforms intention to reality.
  2. By being a surrogate sucker, the mesa becomes a tool of healing.
  3. By being a holder of energy, the mesa absorbs energy at sacred sites.
  4. Likewise, as a holder of energy, the mesa can pass energy when giving the Sacred Rites.
  5. The mesa can be opened to provide a portable altar of sacred items.
  6. The mesa provides a ground on which to perform divinations.
  7. The mesa can be left at home and become a beacon of energy that calls one home safely when traveling.
  8. The mesa can be a companion, always at your side, during day or during sleep.
  9. The mesa facilitates personal transformation as it is being created during the journey around the four directions.
  10. The mesa links energetically to other mesa carriers and to the ancestral lineage of mesa carriers.
  11. The mesa is a map of personal cosmology. “When I look into my medicine bundle, it’s a mirror of myself, and it’s not just that, it’s a place where I can consciously transform myself.” Concept and quote by Jim Hagedorn.
  12. The mesa facilitates sourcing from the Spiritual Collective Consciousness. “The Transcendent Global Mesa is what we’re all sourcing as we open our medicine bundles in these New Times!” Concept and quote by Wake Wheeler.
  13. The mesa is a portal to multiple dimensions. “My sense is that the mesas are working not only in this dimension but in others as well. Working on our behalf personally, as they have since we invited/initiated them.” Concept and quote by Kinlen Wheeler.

Mesa_2124
#4: Have you hugged your mesa today?
As a mirror of myself, my mesa is Two Spirit as shown by the two little bear spirits.

*A Two Spirit holds the energy of both male and female in one body. They are the third gender in most Native American tribes. The third gender is comprised of individuals that have a gender identity that is neither male nor female or both male and female, thus they are able to walk between the worlds.

Mesa_2130
#5: Two Spirit Khuyas
Inside are many Two Spirit khuyas on a Four Spirit cloth.

Mesa_2131
#6: Two Spirits wrapped in a mesa cloth.
The Blanket Ceremony is a Native North American wedding tradition. Here these Two Spirits are wrapped in a rainbow blanket to represent the marriage of male and female energy to create the balanced Androgyne.

Copyright © 2015 Drake Bear Stephen. Except where acknowledged. www.DrakeInnerprizes.com