shaman

All posts in the shaman category

Capturing the Now

Published December 30, 2015 by murgcat

social-mt-rose-facebookEnlightenment comes when you exist in the Now! That’s the secret to The Secret and every other mysticism out there. The elusive Now but how?

Adrenaline junkies, why is it they do that voodoo they do? Is it really flirting with death? I think it’s something else entirely different. Flirting with our demise strokes our ever-present ego, but what is it that our soul longs for – The Now. They, the a fore mentioned junkies, have discovered a short cut to the Now.

Maybe short cut isn’t the correct view. It takes dedication and perseverance to reach the point where it is flirting with the reaper rather than fumbled attempts at offing yourself through Darwinism. I certainly hope you’ve had a few conventional jumps before your first base jump. You can’t bomb a black diamond slope until you’ve done a myriad of runs.

I can explain it from the skiers point of view. When you are pushing that boundary, the edge of your skill , where disaster is but a blink away, you can’t think. It sounds counter intuitive. When your body and sensory inputs override the constant chatter of your monkey mind you are capturing the now. You must be absolutely and totally aware of your surroundings: making immediate decisions and then immediately releasing the thought to make room for the next necessary decision.

You reach a point where all you are is awareness without judgement, without ego getting in the way. The landscape flashes by yet time slows down. You can only experience. If you can stop to catch a breath, everything is brighter, you feel alive. Regardless if it’s the side of a mountain you just schussed or the side your flying by in a wing suit, you have two accomplishments when you are done. The first is the one that appeases your ego, you did the difficult and survived. The second is a deeper more primal reward that keeps you coming back to push the boundary again and again… you captured the Now.

 

Advertisements

Little wheel spin and spin, big wheel go round and around

Published December 3, 2015 by murgcat

“Welcome back kids! Was that fun or what? Did you find what you were looking for? No matter, let’s spin that wheel and see what it gets you this time round!”

“I’m gonna be the king of Siam.”WheelofFortune

“Well I’m gonna be an Iroquois princess, nyah!”

“You’re both wrong. To quote that great philosopher Steve Martin, ‘I was born a poor black child…’”

I have noticed that people looking for a past life experience want something exotic and of mythic proportions. Most people on the planet have the epic struggle of everyday survival. That my friends is heroic. What are you looking for?

If the goal is to learn, how can that happen when you’ve always been the hero? We all want to be Wellington; someone has to be Napoleon. Or more realistically, Napoleon’s groom or the poor peon who scoops up the horse crap and dries it so he can have a warm place to sleep at night. I’m sure we’ve all worn a white hat just as we’ve all worn the black hat and mask.

When you start the search for your past lives, are you ready for what you may find? We have all been the victim just as we have been the victimizer. It could be that what we hate the most is something we have recently experienced.

Can your current ego deal with the atrocities you may have committed in the last lifetime? Are you abused now because of the hardships heaped on native children as you destroyed their culture? Have you been blessed with comfortable life because of altruistic acts through several lifetimes? Makes you wonder if the feminist of this lifetime was the misogynist pimp in Budapest in 1600.

The revelations of your deaths can be horrific. In western culture contemplating your death is morbid. The freaks and weirdoes are the ones that obsess about mortality. When you dig into those past lives in their totality you get to experience those deaths also. The Déjà vu of place with the remembrance of your passing at that same spot can be a bit spooky. Without a true acceptance of the reality of death, some past life memories can be devastating.

It is that cultural context that also makes it so devastating. There are actions and attitudes that were common place in the past that are repugnant now. The torture of the witches and heretics, in which were you the prosecutor, the defendant or one of the throngs screaming for “justice”? Marriage contracts for children as young as 5 or 6 were undertaken. Those marriages were consummated by the ages of 13 or 14. In our current culture that’s abhorrent, and to abuse victims it’s impossible to understand and unconscionable.

How do you handle the sudden realization that you were what you hate the most in this lifetime? You were the sultan that accepted that wife because it was the way of the times. If you didn’t consummate the marriage as soon as physically possible the business or political advantages could be lost. You’re an atheist in this lifetime yet you’ve spent many centuries as that hammer and enforcer of god. You are a devote Jew but in the 40’s you drove a tank while wearing a black uniform with the skull and crossbones insignia.

It’s a careful what you wish for moment. If you are comfortable with your personal demons, what’s a few more to the party? However, those issues you have the most difficulty with may be issues you have dealt with before. You may not be too happy with what side of the coin you were on the last flip.

If you are well grounded the journey can be mystical and healing. You can release patterns that have been reoccurring even prior to this incarnation. Realization of the deep dichotomy that exists in life builds an understanding compassion. That compassion can bring a peace of heart. You might not agree with the actions of another but you can understand their motivation. You’ve been there.

Reincarnation but which one!

Published November 26, 2015 by murgcat

IMG_0208The Comedian spoke a profound truth. “Death is Natures way of saying thanks for playing, try again!”
Reincarnation is one view of the soul’s journey. There is validity to this idea. Now, which view of reincarnation I believe in is up to debate. There are two main concepts that appeal to me. The first is the basics that everyone is familiar with, the one soul journeying lifetimes to the grand prize of enlightenment. The second is the belief that upon our deaths our energy gets dumped back into the great pool of source. We can examine both from my point of view, my subjective grooviness. You can make up your own mind.
Traditional reincarnation, if you will, consists of a single soul striving over and over to reach liberation from the cycle of rebirth. Lessons are learned; karma is balanced again and again. Always one cohesive soul learning life lessons. As the spirit travels through its journey it becomes more enlightened. The more advanced, the more of the previous lifetimes are remembered. Once one has reached a high level, the memories and lessons of the previous lifetimes are retained. Spiritual teachers tap into all of these lifetimes to help us and them understand life.
Once you have learned all there is, or more probably, all your particular soul has chosen to learn, you get to break the bonds of this world. Now the soul gets a choice to move on or continue to play the game, but on their terms. When a particular spirit is so moved by compassion and love for those of us still caught in the throes of birthing pains again and again, it comes back to teach and heal. That’s where we get our bodhisattvas like Kwan Yin and the Dali Lama.
The second concept is the shaman’s idea of reincarnation. In this view, source is the origin of us all and it’s where we return upon death. The Toltec shamans call it the eagle. We live and strive and learn and then our spirit is devoured by source. There is an incentive in this view; you work harder at your studies and practices so that you may avoid the eventual disintegration back into source.
This view would explain why many of the past life experiences are so fragmented. We dissolve back into the pool. As a new soul is created, bits and pieces of a myriad of life experiences and vibrations come together to form a new being. The more enlightened we become the more the spirit starts to coalesce. Eventually the soul is able to gather the totality of ones self; we break the cycle.
The second argument has always appealed to me. It explains quite a few anomalies in the past life experiences that have been reported. A person could only remember those vibrations and memories that becomes part of the new being. A convenient excuse for the big holes or the small remembrances.
I have to say due to recent revelations and epiphanies, I am now more inclined to validate the first point of view. I think what you remember of your past lives, if that is part of your journey, are points you need to focus on. It can guide you to your Dharma, your purpose in life. The final transcendent goal is to reunite with source and stop coming back.
Rather than argue about it now, let’s have a chat after we’ve passed but before we spin the big karma wheel for our next walk on our beautiful Gaia. That’s one of the downsides of being an atheist, if they are right, they won’t get to say, “I told you so.”

Shaman Vs. Medicine Man

Published June 10, 2015 by murgcat

HPIM0463

Laaadies an gentlemen! In this corner we have the perennial North American favorite The Medicine Man known south of the border as El Curandero! In the opposing corner, hailing from the far reaches of Siberia but now a worldly cosmopolitan traveler – The Shaman.
What I’m trying to understand is all of the arguments I have been seeing lately about who may or may not be entitled to call themselves by these titles. The attacks can be quite vehement. But what do these appellations mean? They are descriptive words not titles.
Shaman is easy. It is the agreed upon anthropological term for indigenous healers and spiritual workers worldwide. The word has become the equivalent of karate and kung fu, generic words that evoke a spirit, an idea that allows many people to understand what is being talked about. Just as there are many different styles of martial arts that are categorized by the above, shamanism has the same phenomenon. Saying someone practices shamanism leaves it open to a fairly broad range of interpretation.
Medicine man, words that hold so much weight. A white mans limited description of a rich and varied spiritual tradition. Always tinted by the feelings of moral and intellectual superiority as pointed out by the good book. I can understand medicine is a good generic term to describe what some of the spiritual people of the North American continent practice. Yet some of our Indian brothers seem to want to defend their use of the white man’s term to the death!
Was there one homogonous spiritual practice amongst the natives on this continent? I didn’t think so but from the arguments it would seem that’s a common belief. Also, that path is reserved only for those whose ancestors originated in North America. Wouldn’t it be better to use the title the tribe has bestowed on the person rather than fighting over the white man’s word. In fact, the term was probably “curendero” before medicine man. In fact the first white term for these functionaries in the red tribes would have been whatever term the Vikings used for healer. That could have been shaman.
There are also the two other sides that should be examined. Part of the argument is the Red Path is the best highest way that lives in harmony with mother earth and all her creatures. If I agree, why should I be denied that path because of my heritage? If it is indeed the proper path then shouldn’t Indians everywhere try and help everyone else get it right? Instead we are fighting over the words used to describe similar practices.
The vision quest is a wonderful example. The founders of almost every major spiritual belief system have spent time alone in the wilderness to receive their epiphany. We may call it anything but a vision quest. Those words, again English words, belong to our Indian brothers.
The third side is if you put credence in reincarnation. Perhaps not so much in the past but now the human lifespan is but a drop in the bucket of time. If we are indeed on this planet to learn, we have had multiple opportunities. Not always as the knight in shining armor or as the damsel in distress, rather a little of everything. Everyone has walked the earth as man, woman, rich, poor, good, evil, every aspect of the myriad of manifestations in this dichotomy of life.
If a certain path feels right, there is a chance you have walked it before. Just because your current meatsuit isn’t the proper attire doesn’t mean you can’t resonate with the tunes at the dance. If reincarnation is the way of this reality then at some point you have probably been what you hate the most. Take a moment think about it.
Does the path have heart? Do you feel like you are walking with Spirit? What does it matter what you call it. Fighting over the words distracts everyone from fighting for Gaia and her creatures. I do understand that the snake-oil salesman needs to be called out. Those that are sincere can be forgiven for their vernacular. It is all about Intent after all.

HPIM0589