I have been having some great shamanic journeys lately and many things are coming to me in these journeys that I feel are important to share. I feel like I need to lay some things out and perhaps explain some things about myself and about my novice status as a journeyer before I do. Some of the people who read my blog haven't known me for years and don't know a lot about me. I will tell you a little about myself, and about how I have come to be where I am. I hope it will not be boring.
For starters I do not think I am in any way better than anyone else or that the things that happen to me in the course of my daily life or in my journeys are the cause of me being a special case. I think that anyone who opens themselves to the wonder and the mystery of what is all around us has special, deep experiences. Mystic experiences; miracles, spirit contact, divine contact, prophetic dreams, unexpected peaceful or powerful moments... these moments make life worth living. I am very grateful and humbled to have had many moments in my life that made my body weep from joy because the experience was more than my mortal self could easily handle. I am blessed that I can never doubt that the divine lives in each one of us and every thing around us because I have felt that connection personally and am marked by it. I do not think I am unique to have experienced it, only very blessed to be able to share what I have experienced.
I come from a Christian background. I was raised Methodist. My mother still is. I was always empathic and saw and heard things no one else did for as long as I can remember. My mother told me these abilities were from the devil. The idea of that never seemed right to me, even as a child. I used to ask her why God could not bless someone with the things I had, she said it was a trial to be ignored. I don't agree with her. I have the greatest love and respect for my mother, Jesus and for the Christian God. For me personally, they are not my only link with divine energy.
Because of my being raised a Christian I have known a lot of guilt about this. I know that I was made exactly as I am by the divine, despite what I was taught as a child. My abilities are a gift, not a curse. I search for my answers in commune with spirit, nature and with each person, animal or thing I come in contact with. In my view, signs and answers are everywhere and divine spirit is always speaking to us. I am not asking anyone to follow my path. I am not advocating my path. It is my path. I only hope by sharing my experiences that others might love themselves and not feel guilty about who they are.
I want each of us to see our connection to each other, and to the divine in all its forms. I want each of us to do our part to heal our mother, the Earth. I am not perfect or even anywhere close. I don't have all the answers, I don't even know the questions. I hope to share my experiences so we can explore these things together if you wish to.
I am not a Shaman. I do not claim to be. I am very much a novice, but shamanic journeying has opened up worlds and facets to everything in the short time I have been doing it that I could not have dreamed of. It is one of the coolest things I have ever experienced or done for myself. It has healed me and helped me grow. I am still a work in progress.
I love the outdoors, but am not able to spend a lot of time outdoors because as I have aged, I have become very sensitive to heat. My skin breaks out in a horrible swollen red rash that takes a couple of hours to go away. I have been to the doctor with it and was told it was part of perimenopause (joy). He basically said he was sorry, I just had to live with it. I hoped the shamanism class might ground me and help reconnect me to the earth. I really didn't know what to expect, and am surprised and joyfully humbled with each new experience I have.
I found my teacher, Carla Meeske, on the internet when I wasn't really looking for her. I read about her classes, which focus mostly on animal communication and became intrigued. I use my Reiki (a Japanese healing art in which one lays their hands on a clothed person and transmits "chi or ki" universal life energy; it can also be sent remotely) to heal animals all the time, and to help those I know who ask for it. The idea of being able to talk to my animals on a deeper level really intrigued me. I decided to sign up for her beginning class which taught journeying and meeting your power animal. My husband funded and supported me in this. :) He is a keeper and my prince.
There are three main worlds that we have worked in with the journeying I have experienced: the upper world, the lower world and the middle world. Different beings work in different places. The upper world isn't really the Christian heaven or even the Summerlands, but I think that they are probably there. I have only ever used the middle world as a portal to get to other places, I have not explored it in depth. I believe it to be most like Earth. The lower world I have found to be filled with many animal spirits. I do not think it is exclusively so, but that is just my experience there. Each world is reached through a portal, or a membrane of sorts. When you travel there, you really feel yourself pushing through them. It is easy to understand how spirits who do not know how to get through the membrane become trapped here on earth.
I was shocked to meet my first power animal; an Owl. The owl is my mother's family totem because of an encounter my maternal grandmother had with an owl years ago. The women in my mother's family display their kinship with the owl with pride by collecting every owl they see. I personally felt a much closer connection to cats or to hawks. I laughed out loud when the owl turned out to be my first teacher and guide in the other worlds. It was a delightful surprise.
I have since met other teachers and had many experiences with them. The first non animal teacher I met was the angel Raphael. I know angels reputations can be polarizing to some people, but they were around long before Christianity, and are very benevolent and loving in my limited experiences. I had been talking to them for years but was absolutely blown away to meet one. He is beautiful and kind and has a wicked sense of humor, if he will forgive me for saying so. His first words to me were, "Welcome home!"
When I met Raphael I was afraid to tell my teacher, for the same reason I never believe people when they tell me they believe in reincarnation because they were Cleopatra in a past life. I thought I would meet some Native American teacher or a great buffalo or anything but an angel during a shamanic journey.
When I told my teacher what the upper world looked like to me, I mentioned that the place I had gone had a see through floor. "I have seen that place!" she exclaimed. "When I was there, there were angels looking down on all of us." I began crying and told her who I had seen there. She was as tickled as I was, but not surprised. There is no limit to who you might meet in these journeys. I believe that.
When I am restless at night, I have always imagined a beautiful log house near a lake in the mountains. Behind the house is a wooded area, with the trees going up the mountain. All of the animals I have cared for throughout the years who have passed over live in this house, if they choose to. I always imagined that my brother and aunt who have passed over live near by and check in on them. The house is filled with unique things and feels like my home. When I met Raphael the first time he told me that the place I had been visiting in quiet meditation for years was truly in the upper realm. He told me I had been visiting that place, and others without realizing I was journeying. He was thrilled that I now was journeying consciously and wanted me to know that I could visit anytime without restriction.
On my first journey after my first set of classes ended I had a beautiful experience. The owl and Raphael took me to my home in the upper world and I got to visit with each of my animals that had passed over, except one. Molly, my cat who never liked me, was not there. I was told she was well, but lived elsewhere. My brother David came to visit me, and later my aunt Wanda. I cannot tell you the joy of visiting my family there. At the time, we were going through a very difficult period with my father and his health. I asked my aunt (his sister) for advice, expecting some wonderful course of action and she told me, "Lori, just leave your daddy alone and quit trying to make him do what you want him to do. I know you love him, but you aren't doing anything but frustrating yourself and him. Set up a healing grid with that nice piece of rose quartz you have for him. He will take care of himself, or he won't. You can't make him do anything, honey."
This all sounded just like my aunt, except for the crystal grid and rose quartz part. My aunt wouldn't have ever told me to do that here on earth in a gozillion years. I did what she said, and passed some messages on to my sister for her. Wanda has visited both of us in dreams many times, and still visits my sister's house (her former house) from time to time, seriously (we have many stories). My sister and I decided to take her advice on Daddy, and low and behold it worked. We both quit pushing him and he did what we wanted on his own. His health all around is very improved.
I have since visited with my grandmother Ione, my grandfather Edmon, my great grandfather H, and his wife Inus, who I never met in life. My grandmother was a seamstress in life, and I am happy to report she is still making clothes in the upper realm. She has made me two dresses to date for when I travel. I thought this was unusual until I asked my teacher during the course of another classes I took. She told me it was an honor, and not unusual at all.
My experiences and the experiences of the other people in the classes I have taken have made me sure that what happens during the journeys is very real. The knowledge and experiences are NEVER what you expect, and though everyone has different things happen, the commonalities that are taught are mind blowing.
I have rambled on enough for now. I am going to take a break and start writing about some of the things I have been taught. Please see my post on the shadow self to see what Raphael told me about learning to love your shadow self. It is very powerful and has been very healing to me.
More to come! Thanks for reading!
With much love,