Student and Apprentice Stories: “First Lessons” – 2nd in a series by Resolute
2nd in a series by Resolute
“Why is it that I don’t do that which I know I want to do?” We were sitting in session at the Shaman Intensive workshop, each with our own puzzling questions. This is one that had stymied me for an aeon or two, it seemed, with the overwhelming enormity of never quite finding an answer. For so long, just when I would find myself on the cliff-edge of a great discovery, understanding, accomplishment, adventure, I would be at a standstill, unable to move forward or backward. Watching my dreams die as I felt as though the very foundation under me crumbled, leaving me to painfully clamber back up the cliff’s crags with all energies focused on the survival of the bloodied, bruised soul of myself, once again.
I sat with crinkled forehead, quizzical eyes, yearning to solve the mystery. Wolf nodded, looked into my soul-eyes and spoke. “Consider the deer on the highway, frozen in the headlights of approaching danger. It would be helpful for the deer to run. When you are frozen, look at what it is you need to run toward.”
It was my turn to nod slowly, taking in the magnitude of the lesson, its impact as heavy and enormous as the frustration, fear and sadness I had known as the underlying song of my life to that point.
When I returned home, I plastered reminders on computers, mirrors, kitchen counters. “What is it that I need to run toward?” The awakening began, slowly and yet inexorably, as moment by moment, I surprised myself by noticing I was able to move after all! It felt at first as a flexing of limbs as I was roused from a long sleep. Sitting up dizzy in the breaking dawn of my new way of life. And beginning to do the simple things – making a cup of tea, sitting out of doors, noticing, allowing life to flood back into my spirit.
“What is it that I need to run toward?” And daily tasks became lessons in presence, and less the excruciating terror of tumbling down the cliff of my previously created reality.
“What is it that I need to run toward?” Ah! Of all else, I needed to run toward myself, embrace myself! Ah! Yes! And so began the journey that continues today, and stretches long ahead of me, each moment now a decisive moment, awake, with a new song, and the inspirited earth joining in with all her supporting harmonies, joy and sorrow in turn, ecstasy balancing the inevitable pain, an alchemical blending I could never know until I took the many melodic themes of my life, owned them, sang them together into wholeness.
And, as I prepare for time again, at the upcoming Shaman Intensive, I am standing once more on the edge of a cliff. I spread my owl wings, and fly!
Categories: Student Stories, The Shaman Path