Sun Sets on Lessons Learned
After posting about Journeys on Sunday, I was re-listening to my Sandra Ingerman mp3 and decided that I would journey that evening and ask my totem if I could share the sketch I had made of him with others.
As I relaxed I wondered if it would feel any different taking a journey at the Cabin in the Forest; would it seem more real actually being in the place I imagined to be when taking the previous journeys?
I relaxed to the rhythm of the drum, focused my breathing, in my mind swam to the spot in the lake, dove down, opened the hatch, and entered the lower world.
The colors were more vibrant than it was the last time I entered the lower world and there appeared to be more animals. I could feel my spirit guide, but I could not see him. I spent the entire jouney trying to find him. I felt his presence and it was pleasing, but I did not see him face to face to ask him the question. I kept searching for him and felt no frustration, only peace. It seemed like I had just entered the lower world, but I already heard the drums calling me back. I was surprised that I didn’t fight the return, surprised at the peace I felt in spite of not getting the answer I was seeking.
As I sat processing what just happened I realized I really knew very little about this animal. I picked up my iPad and starting searching for this animal in Ted Andrews: “Animal-Speak: The Spiritual and Magical Powers of Creatures Great and Small”. While I could not find my Totem exactly, I did find one that the author said would include my Totem and it helped me to understand what he was teaching me in my journey.
I also found out many other things about myself through him I can’t share because they are so specific that it would be just another way of me disclosing who he is. I now understand why he does not want to be disclosed.
After sketching him in Arizona I was very pleased with how he turned out, and I shared the sketch with certain members of my family. I did not tell them the details of my journey, but I did show them this sketch. At the time I shared the sketch, I was not thinking that 6 months later I would be writing about it in a blog.
My mother read my blog post about Journeys , and mentioned the sketch.
Because my mother had suffered a massive stroke a year and a-half ago, her short term memory is still affected . After taking with her I don’t believe she remembers the animal in the sketch. But I still betrayed my Totem. I know it. He knows it.
I thought I should do something to make it right!
I could not take back what I did, but I could demonstrate my regret for revealing my Totem by creating a ceremony that would eliminate the sketch and hopefully my betrayel with it. If the sketch were eliminated, I could not share it with others. This was not an easy decision for me. The sketch represented the artist in me coming back to life, and I really liked the sketch. But I knew for me to let my Totem know I understood the lesson, I needed to eliminate the sketch. I thought about this betrayal through the evening and into the next day. I felt that I had jeopardized the relationship with my Totem. Let me be clear that there was NOTHING that my Totem did to indicated I had compromised my relationship. I think the feeling I had compromised our relationship came from years of exposure to society’s belief of sin.
Monday night I tore the sketch out the sketch pad and admired my sketch. My Totem’s ears in the sketch were not perfect, but his eyes looked real and his mouth really captured his wild essence. Tears were actually running down my cheeks as I thought about eliminating my sketch in my ceremony.
I rolled up the sketch, wrapped it in hemp twine and tied off one end. I filled the tube the rolled-up sketch paper made with lavender and tied off the other end. I went down to the fire pit by the shoreline, added a small amount of kindling and sage ,and at sunset after I said a Medicine Wheel blessing, lit the pyre .
I wanted to ask for forgiveness and repent, but I think that came from my Christian up-bringing. Nothing from my Journey or my Totem told me to do this. The spiritual guides are loving and patient and willing to teach. That is what I learned.
At the end of the ceremony, I was blessed with a beautiful sunset. For now, the ashes from the sketch will remain where they were created. I will see them whenever I am down by the lake and it will remind me of the first lesson I was taught by my Totem.
Blessings and Lessons in Nature,
Keywords: Cabin in the Forest, Spirituality, art, beginnings, betrayal, fire, journey, sin, sunsets, totem
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