One metaphor I often use is that we are musical instruments playing in the orchestra of life. This is a metaphor that many teachers use as it really touches a truth about our vital role in being part of a world community.
It is crucial for us to reflect on how we can fine tune ourselves to share the music that contributes to raising the vibration of the collective field and also creates harmonious notes that combine together in beauty and love.
The block to doing this continues to be how we get distracted by people and events in the outer world. It is not just the news stories that continue to distract us. The distractions come in as there is such a wealth of books, audio and video lectures, and teachings that are now available to all.
On one level this is wonderful, and we can learn so much. But it has also created a lot of “spiritual surfers”. I strongly believe that the challenges we are now facing on the planet call for people to go as deep into a practice as they can go.
There is of course the need to be exposed to different types of spiritual work and a wealth of spiritual teachings. But at what point do you feel that a path calls to you and decide to stay on the path with focus?
Last month I suggested that you find one simple practice to engage in until it becomes who you are. This is what I mean by fine tuning. For as we become the work and stop seeing our spiritual life as separate from our ordinary life that is where positive change happens in your life and in the world.
And I use the word “simple” in a way that does not refer to practices for beginners. It refers to practices that speak to your heart and soul and do not just speak to your mind. For I find that when people want to perform complex practices their minds get fed, but change might not happen on a cellular level. If you have to focus on the steps instead of on the work you are too distracted to be the bridge between the invisible and the tangible realms.
As you all know I began teaching Medicine for the Earth in 2000. I have taught the work in the Transmutation News, in many of my books, on audio lectures, interviews, and at conferences.
After I started teaching Five Day Medicine for the Earth Gatherings many participants from my groups would gather together once a year for reunions in Santa Fe. At first I attended the reunions as it was so wonderful to join a circle devoted to working in behalf of all of life.
At some point due, to the intensity of my teaching schedule, I moved away from attending the reunions. The reunions continued for years and participants continued to share the work they were doing and the circle continued to bond and deepen.
One year the two friends contacted me to ask me if I would come back to the reunion to help the group explore the next level of the work. I was honored to be asked and immediately said, “Yes”.
I journeyed to my spiritual teacher Isis who had been a source of inspiration in writing Medicine for the Earth: How to Transform Personal and Environmental Toxins. Together with the guidance of Isis, Osiris, and Anubis I had developed the work.
I asked Isis if she could give me exercises or practices to share in the reunion. Her response was that working with light and unconditional love is the key to personal and global transformation. She said it was not that the group needed new, updated, and more complex practices. She said that the group needed to recommit and rededicate themselves to integrating the work fully into daily life.
She advised me to show up to the reunion and teach the Five Day Medicine for the Earth Training again and have people reflect on how much they were living the work.
The point I am trying to make is that we distract ourselves by thinking there is a more powerful “method” or “technique”. We forget the key is that we are the instrument for the divine and we have to fine tune ourselves as the instrument.
Shamans have always worked with light to heal. In their initiations shamans are filled with light and have some experience of a transcendent state of oneness giving them their psychic and healing abilities. This opens the shaman to the world of spirit.
And how shamans have continued to be the instrument of the power of the universe, the divine, and the compassionate spirits is by entering into an ecstatic state where the shaman loses his or her sense of separation and steps aside from ego and personality.
Shamans have and still do this by engaging in long periods of drumming, rattling, singing, dancing, and spending extended times alone in nature.
Shamans step fully into the invisible realms in order to bring through the magic, beauty, healing, power, and new dreams into the tangible realms and into manifest form. They also practice deep listening in nature and watch for omens and signs. They are always “tuned in” and dream with their full body.
Take the time to do the preparation work needed to bridge the healing and power from the invisible realms into the tangible realms. Step away from our social conditioning to embrace a bigger dream that includes the belief that we are unlimited in what we can manifest through spiritual work.
We can get lost in looking for that magical “cure” that will create positive change without realizing that “we” are the magical cure.
And I wonder how loud and intense the wake up call has to get. A teaching shared in many indigenous stories is, “We are the ones we are waiting for”.
As we move into spring or fall, we enter into a new season in nature and in life. I ask that you review the practices you have learned over the years. And take some time and walk in nature or sit in silence. Reflect on how deep you have delved into the practices and all the spiritual teachings you have learned. Honestly ask yourself if you are surfing the surface waves of your work? Are you living the work minute to minute? Do you separate your spiritual life and practices from your daily life? Can you laugh at yourself and love yourself when you fall off the path? How committed are you to deepen the work and become it?
Commit to working with the power of imagination. Imagination is dismissed by many, and it is not understood that our imagination fuels our psychic abilities. For as you engage your imagination you stir your psychic invisible senses to call something into your life and physical world and release that which does not serve you. I had a dream one night in February where I received a transmission of the power of this teaching. The teaching was absorbed by my cells but difficult to find words for.
In February I gave a free introductory lecture through the Shift Network titled “Shamanic Journeying for Community Healing: How Shamanic Practices Can Heal Families, Communities, and Nations”. The call was too short for me to be able to share the depth of what I wanted to share. But to everyone’s amazement about 13,000 people signed up for this lecture. Just the interest alone is a wonderful sign of the desire to work together to heal our communities and the world. There was a palpable energy of love and beauty in our collective field that I know rippled throughout the web of life.
From a shamanic point of view we are all going through an initiation. The planet is going through an initiation. We are being asked to shed or burn away our old identity and old ways of living that no longer serve us personally, all of life, and the Earth.
And as I have shared previously, it is our spirit that guides and carries us through any initiation. We have to let the depth of spirit guide us now. We have to let go of our mental distractions. It is time to become the work.
We need to join together in spirit, beyond ego and personality, to support each other and stand strong together. There is so much we can do together as a strong devoted spiritual collective working together in behalf of all of life and the Earth.
But we must fully open ourselves to the world of spirit and spin threads of beauty, love, light, honor, respect, equality, peace, and abundance for all from the invisible realms into the tangible realms. That is how a new fabric of reality will be dreamed into being.
The full moon is March 5. Let us spin into being a human web of light and love that contributes to the new dream of the Earth. Do your preparation work and let go of your distractions. Fully inhabit your body and engage your senses as you experience your divine light and be that finely tuned instrument that sings the song of light, love, peace, and harmony within and throughout this great Earth.
If you are a new reader of the Transmutation News please visit “Creating A Human Web of Light” to read the instructions for our monthly full moon ceremonies.
We are mostly water and we live on a planet that is mostly water. The element of water connects us all. As we do our spiritual work together we can change the vibration of our inner waters. This change in vibration will be reflected back to us by the outer waters that flow through the Earth. We can create an immense amount of positive change and healing by harmonizing together the molecules of our inner water!
On March 20 we celebrate the equinox. We welcome in spring in the Northern Hemisphere and fall in the Southern Hemisphere.
To celebrate the equinox, connect with a body of water. You can do this through a shamanic journey or meditation and sit with a body of water you travel to in the invisible realms. This would be a Middle World experience. Or you can physically go into nature and sit by a body of water. As you sit with this body of water feel your inner water harmonizing energetically just as you would harmonize and connect with the heartbeat of the Earth.
Find a song or chant that shifts and heightens your vibration. Listen to the song or chant of the water you are sitting with. Attune your vibration to the song of your inner water and the outer body of water you are connecting with. Let us focus on the waters within and without that connect us all. As we all do this together the vibration of all “our inner and outer waters” will harmonize together. Imagine what healing this will bring to all of us and to the planet. Let the vibration of our collective field of energy be changed by the harmonizing Water within and without.
Let us join together to wish all in the web of life a beautiful and joyous equinox!
In February I woke up with a beautiful insight that I want to share with you:
Even when a star in the sky is invisible to our eyes it is still shining.
You are a human walking star. You are shining all the time!
Stories from readers:
Dear Sandra and Community,
In response to your invitation to share what has had an impact, made a difference in my life, in life, I offer the following.
I must say that to share one story or practice is like trying to separate the air that I breathe. Having meditated and merged with the element of fire, I feel the heat, the smoldering in my body, the spark of inspiration that shoots from the eternal flame in my heart. Although it appears as a single, separate spark, it is seeded or born from the eternal flame of life.
Another practice that grows within me is feeling myself as a strand, a jewel in the vortex of the web of life. I love connecting with the web, with all of us who reflect the light in each other. It is so beautiful and gives me a feeling of belonging and solidness; a place to land and rest before going back out into the world, the marketplace.
Also, connecting with the spirit of the land is grounding and again feels me into belonging to this beautiful universe. I do this wherever I live, as I have moved around a bit. I do this when I travel. I tune into the heartbeat of our earth and all my helpers and guides in all forms. It is magical and very real.
Sandy J wrote:
While under stress a few years ago, I retreated to the shore for a solitary summer weekend. After checking in I went directly out to the beach. The wind was howling and the waves were crashing. Even though there were other vacationers on the beach, the songs of nature were loud enough to squelch even my own reluctance to address spirit directly. Standing tall, my chin up and my arms out wide to receive, I asked spirit, “What do you have for me?” I then dropped my head and my eyes fell directly to a shark’s tooth lying on top of the sand.
I picked up the gift and smiled. I held its smooth blackness in my hands and contemplated the shark. Shark must move constantly to remain alive. It travels confidently through dark waters. Though it is very powerful, Shark doesn’t use its power to consume everything in its path. It feeds on specific queues.
This gave me much to consider. Am I just sitting down in the dark? Perhaps I should keep moving? OK, maybe it’s dark at the moment. Keep moving to brighter waters. How am I using my power? Am I consuming everyone in my path? Perhaps I should give greater consideration to how I engage others along my path.
The tooth remains upon my altar, even today. It’s both smooth and sharp. I endeavor to learn to respect and handle myself as carefully as I respect and handle the gift of the shark’s tooth. I am thankful for both the gift of the shark’s tooth and the gift of life.
Since then, instead of waiting until I’m in a dark place, I regularly address spirit asking, “What do you have for me?” It’s amazing what will result from being present with and receptive to spirit.
I love networking! After writing in the February Transmutation News that I was looking for a retreat center to teach at in New Mexico a referred me to a great retreat center where I can schedule some more trainings. Thank you Carl!
Please note my Two Year Teacher Trainings are full with waiting lists. I will be working on scheduling a new Two Year Teacher Training and also a Five Day Soul Retrieval Training. Please check the Training and Announcement section of this site for updates on my schedule. And also I will announce my schedule on the Transmutation News.
There are prerequisite trainings that you need before attending a Two Year Teacher Training. If you read the description of the Two Year Teacher Training on the Training and Announcement section you will see the required prerequisites listed. These courses can be taken with me or any teacher listed on www.shamanicteachers.com.
I was a guest on some wonderful radio interviews in February. You can visit “Interviews” on my homepage to listen to them.
One of the interviews was conducted by the brilliant shamanic practitioner Christina Pratt who has a radio program titled “Why Shamanism Now”. She asked me how Walking in Light: The Everyday Empowerment of Shamanic Life is different than The Shaman’s Toolkit (formerly titled How to Thrive in Changing Times).
I shared that in writing the The Shaman’s Toolkit I attempted to step out of “the shamanic box” and make the Medicine for the Earth work available to a widespread audience who would not want to engage in any practice that had the term “shamanism” associated with it. My success in doing this was quite limited as only a small audience was called to read this book.
I wrote Walking in Light for a shamanic community. I wanted to help people dive deeper into their shamanic work and fully stay embodied while entering into ecstatic states of consciousness and traveling into the invisible realms for guidance and healing. And I wanted to help people go deeper into the work of becoming the work.
I am receiving such wonderful feedback on this book.
And as you know “Shamanic Visioning Music: Taiko Drum Journeys” was also released in February. I am also receiving a wealth of great feedback on this CD. People who see clients who are sensitive to loud and fast drumming have shared with me that the track “Heartbeat” is so supportive in their healing work. And those of you who are supported by journeying to strong drumming absolutely love the track “Rattlesnake”.
I ask you to help support these two wonderful resources by writing a review on Amazon. It would be so meaningful to me if you are willing to support the work!
To order any of my books and/or CD programs please visit:
I have begun my Part 2 course for the Shift Network “Shamanic Journeying for Guidance and Healing. Part 1 went far beyond my expectations of how we gathered together in community to journey and perform powerful and life changing virtual ceremonies. And as Part 2 is focused on working in behalf of others, communities, and the Earth I am so excited about our work together!! This will be an amazing course!
I was interviewed for two award winning documentary movies that were filmed by Emmanuel Itier. You can watch the movie “Invocation” on FMTV.com. And you can watch FEMME at www.FemmeTheMovie.com. I co-wrote a book with Emmanuel and Gary Quinn on “The Invocation”. I will share more information as soon as the book is available.
Llyn and I wrote a beautiful book together that will be released in June. The title is Speaking with Nature: Awakening to the Deep Wisdom of the Earth.
We will be teaching a weekend workshop at Esalen Institute November 13-15 2015. I will post the information, at some point soon, on the Training and Announcement Section on the homepage.
Bhola Banstola, a 27th consecutive generation Nepalese shaman, is in his annual inter-continental teaching and sharing his ancestral wisdom tour. Bhola is a remarkable shaman who enriches his teaching with marvelous stories, rituals, ceremonies, dancing, drumming and healing heart energy. Bhola is a friend of mine. He is such a bright spirit and you have a great opportunity to work with him and experience his transformative work.
Whether through his teaching, individual sessions or his trips to Nepal, India, Tibet, his command of the English language and unique ability to bridge across cultures provides students a safe portal into ancient wisdom that can be used in our everyday lives. In 2015 he has scheduled a travel-learning trip with the shamans in Nepal from October 12-23, 2015 and a pilgrimage to Nepal-Central-Tibet-Mt Kailash from August 20 through September 10, 2015. Bhola's 2015 weekend classes, individual sessions (USA-EUROPE) and educational trips and pilgrimages can be found at www.nepalese.it.
Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee made this short beautiful film titled “Changing the Story: The Need for Magic”.
In order to free our world from its present nightmare of consumerism and exploitation, we need a new story a story of oneness and interdependence, of cooperation rather than competition. But to make this transition we need power, the magic that belongs to life itself. How can we find this magic to give birth to a new story of oneness, of the earth as a living, self-sustaining whole, full of beauty and wonder?
Ian Murphy did a short film where he shares secrets from Peruvian Shaman, the last descendant of the Inca,that holds the keys to finding our path, purpose, and destiny. http://www.theincacode.com
Vernal Equinox in Taos. People are gathering for an extensive 24 hour ceremony with a focused intention to protect the spring 2015 fruit blossoms from frost. Even if you are not able to attend, we invite you to share your prayers from afar. Here is the link: www.taosblossoms2015.org
Here are a couple of Shift Network courses you might be interested in checking out:
The Heartmath intro: “3 Keys to Awakening Your Heart's Intelligence” will air on March 4.
Through the Spiritual Cinema you can receive and watch the DVD “A Fish Story”.
Nick Stern, a loving father and devoted husband is heading to the lake to put the finishing touches to his wilderness fishing cabin. Suddenly Eddie, a fugitive on the run, dashes across the road. Nick swerves and crashes. Eddie tries to help, but reluctantly runs away when the sheriff arrives, and Nick dies—alone.
As final as death is for the living, for those who’ve crossed over, it can be just the beginning. Nick can’t ‘let go.’ The pain his death has brought to his family is preventing him from ‘moving on.’ So Nick begins a process of renewal that will change everyone in this film.
The heart of this film—in more ways than one—is how Nick and his family are finally given the gift of healing by the most unlikely of redeemers, Eddie. Eddie has his share of misfortune and wrong turns in his life but is nonetheless the perfect person to help Nick get to where he needs to go.