Twenty years ago I found out that I was a lineage Shaman, meaning that it was my soul path in this lifetime and for lifetimes before. I had been attracted to Native American spirituality but I was surprised when a Shaman revealed this information. I did not believe it, but took it under advisement and watched my path unfold.
Since then I have had many direct experiences revealing who I am and my purpose. Heyoka Greywolf is my medicine name and who I have been. A Heyoka is one who helps remove illusion through folly and fun, Greywolf is teacher.
StraightArrow came to me in a meditation. All of the letters were spelled out with a symbol. This spoke to me of many things, especially of the way I am with myself and others. Direct, get to the source, reveal truth, move forward in alignment, and make things clear and simple. No BS.
Studying with Shamans of many traditions in the states and around the world I discovered little known answers to problems and have made them even simpler for people to embrace and live a better life and health.
I feel an affinity to many traditions, especially the ones from the east. Native American spirituality unified many things and ways. The teachings of everything and everyone being sacred and honoring all of nature, stars, elements, seasons and aspects of life bring richness and value to me.
Living a Rainbow path, I have integrated the foundations and truths of all religions and spiritual callings from around the world that speak Universal truth and love without separation. Yoga and Ancient eastern philosophies and teachings have been a part of my life for thirty years.
The Vision Quest comes from Native American traditions. It signifies a Rite of Passage for the one who goes through the process. Different forms of this process are held by traditions around the world for individuals who are moving through new stages of life or big challenges.
In the form I work with we set aside a week with days before and after with the threshold time alone in nature for three days and nights in-between. Without food, just water, no tents, just tarps and sleeping bags and little else we are as close to one with nature as possible. Sitting facing you 24/3 is an awesome task. Loving you enough to take this time to separate distractions and comforts is quite a journey.
It rained the first night we were in main camp giving us a preview of our journey. The week was to have all variations of summer weather in the Hudson Valley. Sun, heat, cool, rain all flowed continuously, quickly and interchanging, allowing emotions and realizations to move with the environment.
The three of us who completed this sacred quest had been preparing for months. Individually it is something for each one of us to experience alone, and yet we were together in our experience in many ways. I was so appreciative of the Ashram allowing us to share their sacred space for the week. We could not have been more welcomed and held. Their three hundred acres were lush and beautiful and only a little more than an hour from us.
Since February, I was creating the container for people to join as called. While holding that space, I was going through deep healing, inner preparation and process. I put some projects on hold to allow this profound experience to unfold. I had not held a quest in nine years and 2012 seemed perfect.
Twenty people showed deep interested, six signed up and two completed the journey with me. Supporting each of these people in different ways was a journey in itself over these months.
Many in my teaching, healing and Facebook communities participated with prayers and support for our group. Doing such deep inner work is something to appreciate. The people supporting, received healing and blessings as well, I look forward to some of their stories.
My experience the week at the Ashram was intense, challenging, loving and supportive. The last quest I held was on the property of a Native American man in Pennsylvania. We experienced more of that tradition in our quest.
This quest reflects where I am as much as those who journeyed together. The Hindu tradition of this Ashram teaches that it is for us to become our own Guru knowing that each one of us is God. This is the awareness that speaks to me strongly more than any other today. Honor you as divine. Be the answer, the love, and the medicine.
The work-process-adventure, healing path, Be The Medicine, that I have gathered over forty-five years, teaches and offers practices and tools for each one of us to live in our wholeness, divinity and live our souls purpose. To quest for a vision was planned for those who are called to experience this on a profound level.
As the women went out on their individual journey, I was at home outside on the porch of the Namaste building on these beautiful sacred grounds. A greeting of Namaste means the divine in me, honors the divinity in you. So as with the Native American traditions, the Hindu also honors all beings as divine.
We are all more alike than many know. Instead of Native American prayer ties, I gave each woman prayer beads to use for their intentions and prayers for themselves, others and the earth.
They choose to go out Tuesday morning as they were both fasting for a day already and wanted to begin. They chose perfect spots next to a secluded lake, under tall trees with some open spaces to sun in.
For this type of a quest you stay within twenty feet or so of the center of your space for the entire three days. They put up tarps to keep them and their sleeping bags dry if it rains-which it did quite a bit. As much as possible they were in the sun and under the stars.
I watched as the weather changed many times a day. One minute you were sure we were going to be living in the rain for days, and within an hour it was sunny as if it had always been.
You face you in that small space alone, and it becomes your world for three days and nights, you feel vulnerable to nature and her creatures. Things go bump in the night, and rustle around in the leaves, and you learn to let go of fear night and day on many levels.
I was in a tent at night and realized that I had false security. I laughed at the thin boundaries we use as walls in many areas of our life, to keep our self in the illusion of separation and safety. As I thought of them under the stars, I remembered my own prior experiences out on my quests before and sent prayers for them to make it through each night safely.
For the most part I was alone. Living outside was natural in this place. The land was magical. I stayed in main camp and faced my own demons and was in ecstasy as well. Walking around the compound, I heard sacred chanting coming from each building, not the norm for a quest, but perfect for ours.
I woke up at 4 am and left my tent and went to the porch and the side of the stream and went back to my tent after dark. The beautiful stream ran past my tent running over rocks and soothed me in my sleep. Animals, birds and trees spoke to me. I love living outside.
I had the added gift of being with other people from around the world who were there serving the Guru and the Ashram. We spoke during meals under the trees. The Guru had just left two days before our arrival and is on a nationwide tour. They were bringing order after having many visitors for months. I learned more about Ashram life and their practices, and they learned more about ours.
Reading sacred texts, meditating and praying took me deep. My own stuff-ego-challenges came up to be looked at and released. Deeper levels of awareness allowed more love.
Our last night was the greatest challenge. A big storm was brewing with tornados, seventy-mile per hour winds and heavy rain coming toward us. I checked on them and they seemed to be all right. It was the type of storm where no one was safe in or outside.
So I prayed that we would each be guided to be where we needed to be and make it through the storm.
We had ceremonies before and after the three days, honoring, thanking, connecting and celebrating. Drumming, dancing, singing and chanting took us into sacred space and time and brought everything together for us.
Why do we do such things? Taking a week, and for me, much of six months to go deep inside to experience wounds, illusions and challenges and transform them?
This was an extension of how I live my life each day and to take this sacred time apart allowed a deeper experience, a death and rebirth on a real level. This week I will be a sixty-years young, it is a turning point and a rite of passage into elder hood.
I look and feel younger than I have in over a decade or more and look forward to, and am grateful for, my life. It is time for me to publish and take my work to the next level and have more fun! The man I have been seeing in my visions is due to show up soon as well.
Next week I am attending a Travel Writers, Food Writers and Photo Journalist International Conference. I was guided to this opportunity as my birthday gift to me. And as I have been guided to many traditions and worlds before, I know that this new world of travelers, authors, agents and journalists will add new dimensions to my life and work, and lead me into my next adventure.
The thing I seem to miss most from my quest, is my four o’clock Chai with the Ashram cook. I am drawn to look at the clock just before four in the afternoon everyday, remembering the ambrosia of fresh hot Chai, sitting streamside and relaxing with Moti. Namaste dear one.
I am still processing this quest and will be for years to come. Turning sixty is a powerful shift point with new beginnings unfolding. I am in gratitude and graced by all of the people in my life in all forms, dimensions and locations.
Thank you for being you in the world.
In Love and blessings,
Enjoy the Journey,
Be The Medicine, Live the Power of You!
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