INNER LIGHT – A REGULAR NEWSLETTER FOR REIKI PEOPLE
Special Covid19 Lockdown edition 1
Some people journal regularly and find it helps them to try new things.
Whilst this period of lockdown means life is different for everyone, you may find being furloughed or working from home means a different or no structure to your day.
Starting a journal may be useful, or using the journal you normally write in a different way may help to structure your day. The nice thing about journaling is it makes no demands on you to write daily like a diary. It is just a way of writing how you want to record inspirational thoughts, ideas, things you would like to challenge yourself with and how you meet those challenges. It is not formal and anything is up for grabs.
You can try writing with your non-dominant hand and record what happens when you do this – you may, like me, discover that you are in fact ‘other handed’ and only trained to have the dominant hand you have.
What if you write in a different direction? We are all taught to write between the lines, but how daring is it to break that mould and write diagonally, or in a circle?
What is it like to paste a collage; use different coloured pens or pencils; doodle or draw a representation of your emotion?
An aspect of lockdown for some may be that we have to look closer at who we are and what we avoid thinking about at other times. This is buried treasure, and a journal can help us to record images, snippets of conversations or past experiences, recurring dreams that are part of the research scientists are presently doing during these days of enforced inactivity. We need to greet these messengers and in writing down what we think we begin to express in a safe way the cloudy weather that is our unconscious. It is at times like these that Freud’s “return of the unconscious” tends to happen.
We can reassure ourselves that we are not alone in the dark. All over the world people are facing their own emotional territory and when we journal this buried treasure chest, we are giving ourselves the opportunity to record our insights and our Compassion to ourselves and come out of this period in our lives brighter and wiser.
Looking at the dark side means we release stuck Energy and transform it into the fuel that engages the Golden, creative side of life and enables our Great Bright Light to shine forth.
Every one of us is creative, and one thing this virus and lockdown is offering us is the opportunity to open to new things.
Shamanic training enables the practitioner to explore the world utilising the Wisdom of animals.
Animals are different from humans, and use bone and hoof and horns in a way we do not use our bones and fingernails. They trust their ancestral knowledge more.
Ancient indigenous traditions, passed down the generations, enable modern Shamans to shapeshift. There are many stories in American history that record shapeshifting. The really common one is the number of white settler pioneers who noted the large number of Crows in their overnight encampments and corresponding tales of the Native American braves who stole into these camps on reconnaissance missions to try to work out whether these white people were friend or foe.
Celtic mythology abounds in tales of shapeshifters, as do many children’s stories or swan-maidens or transformations of Princes into frogs, or Silkies who can change to woo a man and live on land for a while but then they need to change back to their seal-self and take the man with them under the water.
What is important in the imagery of these tales of shapeshifting is not how humans become animals, but the aspect of how shapeshifting helps humans to work out “who am I” and “who do I want to become”. We can explore our qualities, especially in a crisis, maybe we need the courage of Lion, the wiliness of Fox, the gentleness of Deer, the planning abilities of Squirrel, the patience of Ant willing to carry food back to the anthill over large distances, to build like Beaver, to be aggressive like Badger, to have stamina like Elk or the scrutiny of Mouse, the bigger picture of Hawk, or to be able to ‘give away’ like Turkey.
Or perhaps, we need to re-imagine our situation, see a safe path out of a challenging situation into a calmer future. (Stand still – the trees know where you are!)
Shapeshifting can enable us to find our way Home (Enlightenment) or to prepare to go forward into a new adventure with Trust and Courage. We can live more fully, more intensively, and more richly in this beautiful world.
Finding our Purpose
One of the changes in this time of lockdown may be that we discover our purpose in life, or that what we have been doing isn’t what is satisfying us even though we thought it was.
When we are fulfilling our purpose, we have a real sense of ease. We feel alignment with what we are doing. It may not be easy and it may not fulfil every minute of the waking day – we just feel in tune with it and also with our Innermost Self. We can feel more alive because we are using our personal Energy more usefully, we may feel more grounded; feeling something important has shifted.
Connecting to our purpose in this lifetime is so healing and in making this discovery, there may be difficult choices for the future. Now we have time to explore how we can make changes so we rise to this calling, how we can nurture our purpose until we can fully realise it. This is one of the keys to well-being, and we owe it to ourselves to pursue it.
Coyote – The Trickster
The Coyote is also known as “Medicine Dog” because we know Medicine is on its way – and it may, or may not be to our liking! One thing we can be sure of, Coyote will teach us a lesson about ourselves.
Coyote is the Master Trickster. Coyote is a sacred animal who has turned up on my doorstep since 24 March big time, turning my life upside down, messing with my priorities in life, breaking all my rules, playing with my brain and hiding things in plain sight. This is a major transition – like it or not!
Trickster is cunning. A shapeshifter entering my life to send me timely messages that catch me off guard and make me really think.
Trickster brings out my rebel, encouraging me to break-out, run off, liberate myself from this imposed prisoning. I want to challenge authority, break all these unworkable commitments, allow myself the freedom to live the life I want.
Trickster’s call is not for wimps – and believe me, I have had my wimpy moments over the past few weeks – it is about teasing me into re-examining my life, challenging me to find the courage, strength, boldness and resilience to do what I really want to do. Trickster has no patience or tolerance for my fears. Show up – are you for real or not?
I cannot argue with Trickster because what is being offered is true and I know it. I can whine and feel sorry for myself and Trickster may even say “poor you” to my Enneagram Drama Queen 4 – but it is not meant!
This year Coyote is a really hard taskmaster – no more Mister Nice Guy – showing up a few months early in the Medicine Wheel and throwing me off balance. Just because I am working through the Wheel nicely, month by month, means nothing to Coyote. Coyote is brutally honest, no dressing things up in sentimentality, and caring not one jot for my trampled feelings.
There is an amusing side to Trickster. Coyote Medicine is all about seeing the crazy dog dance. Catching his tail on fire when he plays with matches, diving into the stream to put out the fire, only to nearly drown; the dog thinks he has found a bone, but he has found a rattlesnake and as I watch this crazy dance I am learning this is me. All the booby traps I set myself, all the daft things I do, all the things I dream up that do not work … What am I really doing … and why? Am I self-sabotaging; do my crazy antics mean I lose the game?
Coyote has turned up because I sent out a distress call. All this ‘excitement’ is to stir up my fears so I will resolve them. As challenging and annoying as Trickster is, if I play with what is being offered I will see Trickster not as an enemy, but as a liberator and yet another step along that rugged path to Enlightenment – I will emerge from this more authentic and more my True Self as Trickster’s guiding voice will lead me upward and onward.
Finally – a slightly different way of being diligent in your practice
In these days of uncertainty, this can be an addition to Jôshin Kokyû Hô, or to Heart Breathing which you can use as a beginning to a longer piece of meditation:
- Inhale deeply and gently into the Hara
- Exhale through your nose slowly, while making a soft humming sound in your throat
- Do this for one minute
Lengthening your breath using this “Humming Bee Breath” or Brahmari, moves it away from the anxiety – linked to upper chest breathing – and shifts it into a more restful breath using your diaphragm.
Now move into your Kokyû Hô exercise.