Once again time is moving quickly, and this month we welcome in a new season of life as we celebrate and honor the Equinox.
In the past couple of months I have received three requests from readers of the Transmutation News to speak about prayer. They wondered why I did not write more about prayer.
John wrote me the following letter:
I was relieved to read in the latest Transmutation News that you regard shamanic journeying and meditation as equally valid spiritual practices. Over the years I have come to perform fewer and fewer formal shamanic journeys. I have a daily practice that combines meditation and prayer, and communing with all of my compassionate helping spirits is part of that practice. However, I have felt like I have been cowardly and/or lazy for not doing “real” journeys with drumming. And I have felt like I have in some way let down the various (incarnate) shamanic teachers who have been generous with me in their teaching and mentoring over the years. So I thank you for taking some of that burden from me with your affirmation of meditation as being just as valid a spiritual practice as traditional shamanic journeying.
I was very curious that your comments about meditation and journeying did not include anything about prayer. Clearly asking a compassionate helping spirit in the course of shamanic work for guidance or assistance is the same process as asking for the same things from a deity or other discarnate entity the way that many people do when they pray. The only significant difference I can see is that shamanism allows a virtually infinite number of entities to be the object of one's requests. I imagine that some practitioners of traditional theistic (especially monotheistic) religions might be offended by the notion that what they are doing when they pray is essentially the same thing that a shamanic practitioner does without calling it that. And I wonder if your not mentioning prayer is because you do not want to offend such people.
Thank you for all you do on behalf of the world.
There is no doubt that prayer is a powerful healing force in our personal life and also for the planet. And I imagine that everyone who reads the Transmutation News prays and also has their own way of praying.
The purpose of the Transmutation News has been to teach people how to live a conscious way of life so that we become a living prayer, and we embody prayer during each minute of our lives and throughout all the activities we engage in during the day.
For we can pray all we want, but if we do not live a conscious way of life then our prayers will not have the true transformative power that is possible. Life is also a ceremony. And we have a tendency to separate our prayers and performing our ceremonial work from our daily way of being in the world.
The Transmutation News has been based on the Medicine for the Earth work I teach, and the core teaching principle of this work is it is who we become that changes the world and not what we do. And that we have to live from a place of love and unity. We must focus and concentrate on the practices, prayers, and ceremonies that do create change. We must find harmony within and live from that place as we use our imagination to create the world that holds the goodness of life for all living beings and the Earth herself.
In our culture we tend to separate our spiritual work and our prayers from how we live our life. And the key is the integration of walking on this great Earth with each breath we take as a living prayer.
Our inner world is being reflected back to us in our outer world. So we must become artisans of our inner landscape and nurture the soil and plant the seeds that create the lives we want for ourselves and the world.
I am not trying to discount the power of prayer on any level. But to only pray and not take responsibility for the personal work we need to do to transform our own lives and that of the world might not lead to the end outcome we are hoping for.
Yes, miracles do happen with prayer. And I know many of us have witnessed these miracles in our own lives and in the lives of others.
But when we get down to praying for peace in the world we have to be a walking prayer of peace. We have to learn how to transform the energy behind our thoughts and emotions to an energy of peace. We have to plant seeds of peace in our inner garden. We have to become peace. We have to be able to engage all of our senses to imagine people living in peace. And this takes a lot of personal work on our behalf that must be integrated with prayer, ceremonies, and other spiritual practices we might do.
Over the 16 years of writing the Transmutation News I have written monthly about tools that we can work with to become more conscious and work towards becoming who we must become to create the outcome we wish to see while also letting go of the outcome and timing.
Over the years from time to time I would summarize the practices that will help us become a living prayer. I wrote a short summary again in the November 2015 Transmutation News. For those of you who are new to the Transmutation News you might want to take a look at this short summary.
I have encouraged those who practice shamanic journeying and meditation to ask for guidance on how to make positive changes in our lives that feed our own health and the health of the Earth. But whether we engage in a shamanic journey for help, meditate to drop into our inner landscape and Source within, or pray you still have to do your work.
It does not matter what religion you follow and how you pray. All religions and prayers can be easily integrated into practices to live a more conscious way of life and embody your prayer work. The key is to DO the work so we BECOME the pray and the work. And as we live such fast paced lives and get so overwhelmed with what we see in the media my “mission” has been to keep us inspired and focused on how to be true positive conscious changemakers in our own lives and on the Earth.
The full moon is March 23. Let us continue to join together whether through prayer, meditation, or shamanic journeying to truly experience our own divine light. And let us together let that light shine forth within and throughout this exquisite Earth and touch all of life. The key again is to embody the light and not think about it as a mental concept. We must become the light.
For those of you who are new readers of the Transmutation News please read “Creating A Human Web of Light” on this site for instructions for our full moon ceremony.
We celebrate the Equinox on March 19 as we welcome in Spring in the Northern Hemisphere and Fall in the Southern Hemisphere. This is always a time of great change as we transition into these new powerful seasons where so much change in nature occurs.
To celebrate the Equinox I would like us to continue to cultivate our Inner World and inner landscape. As we do this together we feed the health of all of life and the Earth. We create a global garden within and without.
Check out places in your inner garden that need to go fallow and find new space to work in. Remember our inner garden has lots of spaciousness.
Bend down and put your fingers in the Earth. Feel the grains of soil and the richness of it. Run it through your fingers fully. Have fun with playing with the soil. Taste the soil and smell its rich fragrance. Imagine yourself walking barefoot on the soil truly connecting with the energy and heartbeat of your inner garden. If the soil is dry and hard then this is a sign you have been neglecting taking care of your Inner World. Remember indigenous people have such bright light and joy shining out of their eyes due to the rich Inner World they continue to cultivate.
Reflect on what your soil needs and what plants need to be removed that no longer serve you. Feel passion about doing this. Don’t think of it as work. Think of it as play and something that feeds and enriches your soul.
Think about the wild seeds that you want to scatter as you dance and move in your inner garden. Scatter seeds of good health, peace, love, light, harmony, and so on. Scatter seeds of your heart’s dream. Sing to the seeds so they know they are planted with love.
After you do this you might reach down and push the seeds gently into the soil. And then water them with love.
In the Southern Hemisphere it is time to honor those plants and trees that have given us great beauty. Feel the leaves and branches that are now dry and brittle. What was once alive and reflected so much beauty are now ready to return to the Earth to be composted into rich soil as your inner and outer Earth garden rests through the fall and winter. Notice what parts of your Inner World need to return to the Earth so your soil can regenerate and turn into rich earth that will embrace the seeds you plant when Spring cycles around for you again.
Visit your inner garden and put it to rest. Do whatever tending you feel called to do. Sing a song of gratitude for all that has brought great beauty into your life. Reflect on what you need to let go of in your ordinary life and what needs to be put to rest. Focus on how the soil in your inner garden feels and as you put your feet on the soil connect deeply with the change you feel the earth is going through during this seasonal change. You are nature. You can align yourself with the change in seasons by merging with the earth where you live and feel how your own body is changing and how you need to take care of yourself during the fall season.
Whether you are welcoming in spring or fall plant some herb seeds in a container inside and/or outside. Feed the plants that grow from these seeds with your love. Sing daily to the seeds. Talk to the plants as they grow strong out of the rich soil you planted the seeds in. Observe the growth over time and keep feeding your plant with love. And when the plant is grown eat the herbs. Reflect on how we eat the energy from the thoughts and energies we feed our inner and outer garden with.
Make a choice to be more diligent about paying attention to the energies we send to ourselves, others, into nature, and into the world. For in the end we digest these into our bodies and into our own lives.
I join our global community in wishing all a joyous Equinox!
To order my books Walking in Light: The Everyday Empowerment of ShamanicLife, Speaking with Nature: Awakening to the Deep Wisdom of the Earth (co-written with Llyn Roberts), my CD “Shamanic Visioning Music: Taiko Drum Journeys”, “The Spirit of Healing” or any of my other books and CD programs, the Transmutation App (now available for both Apple and Android devices) please visit: