Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Approaching the Shaman

Lisa asked me to post this excerpt  because people don't understand the Shaman and need to be informed. I welcome any questions or feedback.

Some people don’t seem to know how to approach the Shaman for help. In other societies, the student-master relationship is clearly defined. In India for example, the devotees or students come to the guru or master with humility on bended knee with offerings of food, money or flowers.

I remember going to see Ammachi, a holy woman from India who came to North America. It was at a large hotel in the convention room where hundreds of people lined up to receive darshan (blessings) from here. Before she even entered the room, there was chanting that put you in a calm, joyous mood. When the Holy woman entered, the energy escalated and people crowded close to see or touch the embodiment of the Divine Mother. The line-ups were often an hour long and we prayed and chanted the whole time. It was understood that we were in the presence of greatness.

Shamans on the other hand, do not require such a grand occasion. They are not celebrities or well-known public figures. They look and act like ordinary people, but you can tell them by the strength, courage, integrity and clarity that they emanate.

How do you approach a Shaman? Why would you seek out a Shaman?

I have noticed in Gatherings with our Shaman that everyone gravitates to the Lisa like moths to a flame. They often become quiet and more attentive. They hang on to her every word. She never gets a moment to herself. 

I remember one time that Lisa was sitting alone quietly during a break and a woman went to talk to her. Later Lisa told us later that the woman had nothing to say, she just wanted attention of the Shaman for no particular reason. People like to feed off the energy of the Shaman. But the Shaman will quickly put you in your place, bringing awareness of your intentions for what you do. It is good to have a clear purpose for using the Shaman’s time and energy.

Lisa said it was the Woman’s Moons (ego) seeking attention. Gerard, Lisa`s Sacred Partner, jokes that the Moons are 13 ways of trying to get attention. He also said that the Shaman is Earth energy and the Moons gravitate around the Earth. We need to be aware that we are usually in our Moons or ego when approaching the Shaman. It is one thing to ask for help, another to just dominate the Shamans time and energy to get your needs met without having the intention to learn, heal and grow. 

To the Shaman, we are all children, we are all in ego. You have to be ready for the consequences, willing to hear the truth and willing to do the work required of you when your imbalance, dysfunctions, illusions and ego are pointed out to you. The Shaman sees right through you, sees you better than you see yourself. You need to approach the Shaman with humility and find a way to give something back, by doing your work, offering tobacco or asking how you can give back if you don’t know.

The Shaman is a collective being and does not cater to individuals. When in a circle with the Shaman, I find that if I am patient and listen, that my questions often get answered without them being voiced out loud.  I can’t expect the Shaman to give me all her attention. I have to trust that I will get what I need in the course of events. And I always do! Often I get more than what I expected.

Other times, people get so nervous around the Shaman that they hide or avoid them altogether, especially when they are in their issues, in ego or nightmares or guilt or shame. 

Recently, I was explaining to people that you can’t just go and dump your crap at the foot of the Shaman and ask them to fix your life for you. They took this to mean that they couldn’t talk to the Shaman at all. It made me wonder if they didn’t know how to ask for help without dumping. My mother used to say, “Lay your problems at the foot of the cross”. This used to bother me. First we crucify Christ and then while he is dying on the cross, we add insult to injury by asking him to take on our problems.

The Shaman is not here to do our work for us. If we come to her or him withour problems, AFTER having done as much as we can on our own, we will get the feedback or advice we need. If we are stuck or frustrated, lost or confused, the Shaman will bring us back to balance, consciousness and clarity. A Shaman will guide us and give us hope. 

In the book, “Illusions: The Adventures of a Reluctant Messiah” by Richard Bach, a Messiah who tries to help humankind is frustrated because people just want him to perform miracles. They want magic and phenomena. They don’t want him to teach them how to grow or heal; they want him to fix their problems, to make them go away. If we understand the role or purpose of the Shaman is to guide, inform and bring awareness so we can become empowered, we would not be bringing our issues without having done everything in our power to help ourselves first.

Ideally, we want to bring the Shaman our abundance, our wisdom, the stories of our resolved issues.... and receive confirmation and blessings to bring us further into the dreaming, further along on our paths of beauty and abundance. We need to nourish the Shaman, nourish the collective and the Dreaming. The Shaman energy is a Wind, it is about facing challenges. The Shaman energy appears automatically when the other eight Roles are in place. What would it be like if we all were in our power Roles, if we knew our place on the Wheel and created a sacred space for the Shaman to come through the center?

If we can do our work on our Moons effectively and efficiently, then get back to our Medicine, or Power Roles, we can enjoy the true magic and purpose of the Shaman. We can get to the Collective dream space together where the Ancient Dreamers wait for us.


Jackie said...

Last year I was so fortunate to have a patient friend in Allyson. As it turns out my doctor had me on a medicine which destroyed my thought processes. I thought it was a hormonal issue. I was in agony. She listened to my whining for a whole year. When the workshop came to Ohio (In the Name of Magic), one year ago, she recommended it, I managed to scrape up enough $ to be accepted into the circle.

I felt right at home. I listened as well as I could and got some very valuable information, not to mention the experience shared with a group of like minded (minus the 'bad drugs') individuals.

You mention "people get so nervous around the Shaman that they hide or avoid them altogether, especially when they are in their issues, in ego or nightmares " I was just a bit apprehensive, to actually come into contact with a shaman, but really considering my state, I was pleased at how relaxed I felt. Just a wonderful sympathetic vibration from G.
I was certainly in a nightmarish state, aside from that. But the workshop was much more tolerable than my normal environment.

Two weeks after the workshop, I spoke on the phone to my sister. We get along alright, but as she is very busy and lives a few states away, we seldom talk. We are rather far apart in age as well, so we've never been exactly close. Although in the last few years we find we have a lot in common. Anyway, years have gone by without us speaking. So it struck me as interesting, that about 2 weeks after the workshop, she called me out of the blue, talking about whole foods, as we do, meds, etc... I mentioned the cholesterol pill I was taking. She said "Oh, be careful with that. What happened to me was..." and described the Horror of "Brain Lock" that was just what I was experiencing! My neurologist later confirmed the state called "transient global amnesia". A side effect of statins and other cholesterol meds. It is pretty similar to Alzheimer's.
Curious timing wouldn't you say?

I stopped taking it and within a week or 2 my thought processes showed a marked improvement. Still it has been a year of healing, but I feel much better and confidently resume the work on my path and the business of doing my best to evolve in life, hoping to be a benefit to the communities in which I participate.

I am grateful to name Allyson (still) as one of my closest and most treasured friends.

Hope this info is of interest, and adds to the value of your lovely blog, MaryRose.
Again, Thank you for sharing.

ari said...

hello, i've just read this post over at Rattling The Bones. I enjoyed reading it. Thank You for sharing.

Jackie said...

I was rereading my prior post, and I had to chuckle. You might notice I wrote that the workshop was "more tolerable than my normal environment." I should have written it was "a window into heaven" (smile). I could not believe how quickly my totems began to appear. But I actually had a few more comments...

We tell ourselves these stories. These comfortable fictions. To prop up our pathetic little egos LOL!
I tell myself "I have seen such amazing things." My perspective of this waking, walking world laid like tissue paper over a magical realm. "I must be some great shaman!"
Than I encounter such psychic attacks... Emotional and physical violence... they leave me weak and shaking. I see where you say "strength, courage, integrity, and clarity". I try hard to have integrity, and some people tell me I am brave, but inside I feel as insubstantial as a quivering aspen leaf. When I wish I were as round and solid as a cici bean (Sp <? chick pea - cluck cluck). I am not sure how strong I am.
Like these words flowing underground as if they were oil. I stomp them down in one place and they come geysering up in another. I must need more discipline (the squeaking of leather, whip cracks...) Oooo SNAP! LOL
Actually I have worked hard on having physical discipline, I suppose it is a continual struggle, although at times it does seem easier. Now I am working hard at mental discipline as well.
Wish me Luck with the multi-tasking!

Rose said...

I value understanding. It is understanding and learning and questioning and digging at myself that helped me put myself back together when my world fell apart. I think a lot and I often work things out by writing, normall yon my blog.

I am so conscious of all this that my wider bigger questions and thinking and issues don't make it to the facebook group because there are just too many words...

I sometimes worry that I have too many questions for Lisa but what I have learnt is that she knows which questions to answer and which to not. The ones she doesn't answer are ones I need to work out myself. She always knows.

I do worry about giving back to Lisa too, but she does not seem to need anything from me that I have to give and certainly the things I do give, to me, seem tiny in comparison to what she gives me.

The issues you bring up here are ones that concern me...

Glad you shared your story Jackie!

Vixen said...

I relate to what you are saying and think that it does need mention to treat our wise people with respect and dignity. Dumping our stuff on them is so utterly disrespectful, as is alienating them because of your own fears. I live from a place of humility and take the guidance from anyone in the clan that can help me, only when I have been unable to get the guidance I need from my sisters and brothers then do I approach the Shaman with the offering that is appropriate for the situation, sometimes that gift is just being willing to do the work suggested. From a teachers perspective, it's the greatest gift a student can give.

I appreciate your blog about this subject and feel it should be more publicized so our society can relearn what it means to be respectful again, a lost art of communication, indeed.

Wheelkeeper said...

Thank you all for your comments.

Jackie, A lot of people think that they are a great Shaman, not understanding what a Shaman truly is. There is a lot more to it than seeing spirit as that is how many people define the Shaman. People also mistake the human for the Shaman when the body is the vessel for the energy to come through. It takes 8 years of grueling initiations to completely let go of the human ego and become one with Creator.

Wheelkeeper said...

Ari , thank you for letting me know you are reading my blogs. It helps if people just post a few words even to let me know, it gives me energy to continue. You are helping to create a sacred circle when you participate.

Vixen, I agree that our world today has forgotten all about humility and respect for the Elders and teachers. Doing your work IS giving back to the Shaman, it makes their work worthwhile. Shamans give and give and when people disregard the lessons, or don't learn, even Shamans can become discouraged.


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