It was the night before I was due to fly to the South of France, I was to join my soul brother; a Native American Shaman who I had been in contact with through email and Skype for the past two years. A kindred spirit, friend and mentor that lived in Peru. His heart was open, gentle, familiar. It reminded me of the presence of a vast expansive lake, quietly still, welcoming, nourishing life, warm in a way I have never before encountered with another human.
Feelings of happiness and joy arose like sunflowers turning towards the sun. The thought of reuniting again during this lifetime gave me butterflies. We where to converge in the South of France, Antibes and move onwards to Fanlac so that I might experience the modern day Shamanic traditions and finally connect in person. Sweat beads ran valiantly across my brow as I laid in bed kept awake by my excitement. I stared at the reflection of moonlight playing against my skin, my body vibrating with energy.
Swathed in restlessness I felt like a small child who’s about to visit Santa at his grotto in Iceland (isn’t that where he lives these days?) since returning from having lived in China my experiences in England at times appeared hollow, meaningless and despairingly lonely. The array of energetic phenomena I experienced on a daily basis made it challenging for those around me to resonate with my experiences. I was living in a country that called itself secular but was dominated by Science and Atheism.
At times the challenges of living in a ‘modern world’ cut off from its Spiritual Source felt overwhelming, unbearable even. There was my soul brother the Shaman, he had been an immense support to me but often I was left to grapple with this undeniable feeling… was it a loss of innocence? The kind you know if your heart has been squashed into a mushy pulp. As ever the Universe was encouraging me to go deeper inside, to be bold enough to align with what I really desired, to ask for the life lessons I was being shown through these events, but as ever I was in resistance and reluctant. I wanted more than anything to hide and withdraw into myself. It felt safer there.
As a young child I had lived in India for a short while, as such I had always longed to return to beloved Asia. I often reminisced about the hot humid sunshine against my skin, crickets chirping at dusk, warm easterly winds blowing between my finger tips. I received my wish when in 2011 I relocated to Singapore and in 2013 to spectacular China to study Chi Gong. Till this day China remains one of my favourite places I’ve lived in thus far.
Imagine living on the cusp of the countryside, meditating every day, learning about Consciousness, Energy, visiting ancient temples, Healing and singing songs together. This was my world for 6 months (albeit with a few dramas thrown in! That’s another blog entry!) So here I was, harbouring a dark secret to myself, a traumatic heartache that had acted as a trigger for deeper unresolved feelings of desolation and emptiness, these feelings had haunted me since my Childhood.
I hadn’t integrated them so they spilled over into all aspects of my life. Coming and going, rising and falling rhythmically like dancing tides that wax and wane in harmony with Luna. This was something I wouldn’t allow myself to fully feel or share openly with others due to the ensuing ‘shame’. Isn’t this the main reason we don’t share openly with others, because we feel shame and fear about what others might think?
As an Empath I felt I took on the weight of others shame too, as though I was carrying this burden for us all. I was ready to let that weight go, after all it had never been mine to begin with.
A loss of Innocence
Heartache will plunge you into the deepest recesses of Darkness, it’s a purging of the spirit, a burning away of what I call the ‘loveable’ ego and all that you imagined you where. A dissolution of a Dream, that quickly morphs into a Nightmare where self-love is vacant and self-hate reigns as Queen. When it occurs through a soulmate connection it’s akin to losing a limb, you feel dismembered and yet you still feel the presence of a phantom limb. Phantom limb syndrome is an awareness of an amputated or missing limb, which still feels attached to the body.
No-matter how much chord cutting we do fundamentally we are all so intricately bonded, our connections to each other can never be completely erased or dissolved. Energy can never be completely destroyed only transformed, dissipated and transmuted. Particularly soulmate relationships that involve past life encounters, soul contracts and agreements that cannot be fathomed by the mind. We carry the remnants of these deep connections with us into new vistas, relationships, places, and situations.
The way to begin transforming an energetic chord instead of trying to cut, dismantle and sever it which is taught in most spiritual outlets (which can do more damage than people realise particularly if it’s against your nature to do so) is to encourage ourselves to see and feel the chord/relationship in a completely different light. This requires courage but it needs to be the place from which we begin. Not to destroy, deny or ‘cut ties’ with another as if this somehow solves the problem, as if they where never a part of our lives.
Attachments are another matter, I’m talking purely with regard to emotive connections that can only arise within a soul mate connection. If we are all so intricately connected it is near impossible to sever the connection. How about we begin seeing this bond for what it really is, a mirror, with love for ourselves first. From the perspective that it has been orchestrated for our own expansion. It helps if someone else can help us see this in the form of a guide or therapist, because we can’t always see our own blindspots.
This doesn’t mean we have to let that person back into our lives, particularly if the relationship was toxic, or your safety was in danger. Healing happens emotionally and energetically first, it can happen from afar. A lesson I didn’t quite understand at first. There’s only so much finger pointing and blaming we can do towards another until we begin seeing our own part in the dance. This doesn’t condone another persons behaviour, but it does permit us to step outside of feeling hopeless and powerless to life.
When we are ready if we choose we can become softened by these hardened experiences, but we must not force ourselves or others to “get over it” no more than we can force the day to become night. Like the blossoming of a flower we can allow these experiences to open up our hearts even more, rather than shut them down. Eventually after fully allowing ourselves to feel the rage, bitterness, hurt and pain we can choose openness over closeness, vulnerability over defence, Self-love over Self-hate, transparency over shame and ultimately compassion.
No-one said it was going to be a piece of cake, especially if self-hate has been your default setting since childhood. It’s obviously going to be a challenge to reverse that over night, but that doesn’t mean it can’t happen. It can. It’s a step by step process and we must be gentle towards ourselves through out it all. It’s within these seemingly Dark places our Consciousness visits we nourish our deeper potential to emerge as the person we came here to be.
Really our strongest protection arises through vulnerability, it’s through the open hearted love we willingly see in children that makes obsolete all that we deem cruel and unkind about this world.
Heartbreak is very seldom understood by a logical mind but it’s responsible for the death of more people than we care to admit. The expression “he died of heartbreak…” is very real. Whether it’s the heartbreak of a lover, losing a child, a pet, or a parent the heart endures, it remembers trauma. It’s an initiation into deeper depths of your being you never knew existed. Where your spirit feels splintered, abandoned, and drifting out to sea, like seaweed being tumbled amidst an unrelenting ocean. It’s as though a part of your life force walks out, never to be seen again, leaving behind a barren landscape.
In the Shamanic traditions they call this ‘soul loss’. These parts of ourselves can be called back by a gifted Shaman or by taking good care of our needs and honouring our desires. In the aftermath of heartbreak you lose all trust in yourself and the immediate world around you. It feels unwelcoming and unsafe. You begin to feel like ‘caterpillar soup’. You know, that moment where the caterpillar disintegrates only to emerge with its butterfly wings?
So upon the recommendation of my native soul brother (who listened patiently to my heaving heart) I decided perhaps my friends within the plant kingdom could help alleviate some of the internal suffering I had been experiencing. For me it wasn’t enough to sit quietly, question my thoughts and be done away with the process. The pain was being stored energetically and psychologically like blocks of ice in various parts of my body, causing me to become physically ill.
For two years I suffered from intense nightmares regarding the fall out from the relationship, eventually leading to being diagnosed with suffering from PTSD and anxiety. I had tried various tricks and techniques and felt all the more worse when I was told by others “it’s been 2 years you should have moved on by now…”
Intellectually I understood that, but the mind can only take us so far on our journey. The heart endures, the heart remembers. It has an intelligence all of its own, this heartache ignites earlier traumas from childhood throwing us into the depths of despair. There is no where else to turn but inward.
Journey through the airport
At John Lennon airport I waited patiently in line with two plastic bags full of liquids, a lady in uniform told me I was only allowed one (it’s strange how when people are in uniform they behave as though they don’t have any feelings or common sense) “Can’t I pretend one of them is mine?” a kind voice from nowhere chirped. I spun around, an old lady with a crinkly smile greeted me. Relieved I took both her hands in my own and almost kissed her!
I wanted to throw my arms around her – It’s always a great joy when others bring forth random acts of kindness, the world feels all the brighter – In the distance I could see some suspicious looking men, they reminded me of FBI agents from the X-Files. Suddenly a man with a handsome beard lurched towards me and began asking some bizarre questions. “Where are you going?” “What do you do for a living?” “Why don’t you have a partner?” “How old are you?” it felt like being on an awkward date. Before I had a chance to reply to one question he’d shoot another one at me as though he had a Nerf gun in hand.
It dawned on me then, that I was being stopped on suspicion of being a Jihadi Bride! Yes really! I had to stifle back a giggle to keep a straight face. Although after the initial shock, mixed feelings began to surface about the whole fiasco. Feelings of embarrassment – mainly for him – comedy, but also anger. I could feel the vibration of attraction from the police officer towards me (which made it all the more awkward, although it was probably mutual, he was really handsome!) after a few lines of interrogation I almost thought he was going to ask me out on a date! Thankfully he didn’t!
Moving through Antibes
After a peaceful flight across cascading mountain tops and canopies I arrived in Antibes. A place of unapologetic beauty along the the Côte d`Azur, the southern coast of France. The South of France is a delightful place to visit. Not all parts of the Côte d`Azur are to my taste but I enjoyed the relaxed almost serene atmosphere of Antibes. There is enough variety here to cater towards everyones palette. A blanket of quietude covers the rooftops and there is an old part of the city that has an ancient almost magical feel to it. The further out from the city you venture the more space there is for people to reach inside themselves, where I was staying held a feeling of simplicity and togetherness.
I met with my Shamanic brother and it was the happiest feeling in the world. We embraced and it felt like I was hugging the deepest parts of myself. He was smaller than me in height, with longer hair than my own, but his love reminded me of the sky, infinite and all encompassing. However there was a lady who I initially didn’t feel very welcomed by. I thought to myself “oh not again…” – the past few years I encountered women that where not so pleasant towards me. I questioned what belief it was inside of me that was drawing these experiences and reactions towards me. Much of the time it was a mutual exchange of them projecting their insecurities onto me and vice versa.
Namely they would emit the vibration of jealousy, competitiveness and exclude me as though I didn’t even exist. I found it incredibly hurtful but I also realised this was exactly what I had been doing to myself all along!
The day of the Plant Ceremony & Huachuma San Pedro
On the day of the plant ceremony there was a palpable feeling of excitement and yearning. Sometimes nervousness clung to the atmosphere like tiny icicles hanging from leaves. I trusted the plants to show me the way, I didn’t feel nerves, just a deep longing that breathed restlessly inside of me. I never doubted the wisdom of the plants or the Shamnic way, mostly I found them to be wiser than humans. But within the chi field I could feel the vibration of nervousness and apprehension.
24 hours in advance we had been instructed to not eat anything, only the intake of fluids where advised so that the plant could work with our Consciousness and have a potent effect. Driving towards the home in which the ceremony would take place where 5 rumbling stomachs filled with the promise of transformation. There was a brief introduction about the plant we where to take called ‘Huachuma San Pedro’. Huachuma is known as a sacred Healer Teacher plant from the South Americas that helps people Heal from spiritual, emotional, mental or physical traumas. It is said to help us “let go of the illusions of the world”.
San Pedro refers to a Christian saint who holds “the keys to the Gates of Heaven.” This cactus plant teacher is said to be compassionate and opens us up to know the perfect harmony that lives inside each of us and the Universe at large. It’s also known as Grandfather Wisdom.
My soul brother told me that what made Huachuma unique was that it was a kind plant, unlike it’s neighbour Ayahuasca which was considered much fiercer. We where told the plant would affect each person in unique ways, since I was already so sensitive I wondered how I would integrate the plant into my nervous system that was constantly vibrating with subtle energy. Prior to this I had never taken any psychedelic before, I had never felt the desire or need to. I already experienced an array of energetic phenomena most people would struggle to stay sane with.
Four and a half years ago I began experiencing spontaneous Out of Body Experiences and Lucid Dreams, since that day I became highly sensitive to subtle energy. It happened through a frequency activation that activated my light body, awareness and ‘remembering’ of Multidimensional reality. It’s a work in progress that I’m continuously integrating, surrendering to and moving with. The energy has it’s own plans and takes me where it wants which sometimes creates resistance. It requires a level of trust that I’ve found particularly challenging to resolve within myself because one of my core beliefs has been “I’m not safe.” – As a child and adult I was subject to violence and domestic abuse –
As a result of this experience I continue to feel energy and vibration within my body 24/7, there’s no ‘off’ button. I’m constantly vibrating with what some refer to as prana, kundalini, the life force energy, chi, cosmic energy. I’ve never publicly shared my daily on-going energetic experiences but I do so now to let others who may be going through something similar know they aren’t alone or crazy.
The Consciousness shift is very real and happening in the now. We’re being encouraged to integrate both the Light and Dark Shadows of ourselves, reflected back to us through the world we experience. To remember the non-physical aspects of ourselves that reside beyond this ‘physical material plane’. The real transformation we all seek comes from the inside out, concentrating only upon the Light is not going to save us from ourselves.
I believe my activation is not an isolated incident, I feel there are hundreds if not thousands under going similar transitions world wide. Hiding it away, ruminating in denial, rejecting it to conform to a society that has lost its way is no-longer an option. It’s linked with the acceleration of energy activity on Gaia right now evolving the Consciousness of Humanity and all life on our planet. We are all being called upon to align to our highest truth and expression.
The Shamanic taste of bitterness
The ceremony begun by a woman and a man from either side of the circle coming together in the middle to drink the liquid soup. It turned out I was first since I was sat beside my brother the Shaman. I held the cup to my heart, and then to my head and said a prayer of intention before allowing it to merge with my inner organs, nervous system and Consciousness. Amusingly the man opposite me drank it so quickly, it made me momentarily feel as though I was at an East end pub back in England! I swear he finished it within 5 seconds flat! It made me feel as though I had to drink it quicker than I wanted.
Huachuma as many other plants has a bitter taste, but as with all plant medicine you must willingly surrender to it. Otherwise consuming it will become an ordeal, if there is resistance in your mind your body begins creating resistance through gagging, bodily convulsions, headaches, cramps etc We where asked to take the plant medicine three times, after everyone had taken the first round before I knew it, it was my turn again. Huachuma had been caressing me similar to the feeling of a mother cradling her child.
I wasnt ready for another round so soon I thought to myself (realistically I had lost all notion of ‘time’) intensification of energy surged and swirled through out my nervous system. I could feel tiny spokes of bubbles rise up through my spine, around my arms and out from my hands. The plants Consciousness was merging with my own. I felt at home with this feeling, I sunk into it but mostly I wanted nothing more than to sleep. My brother kept nudging me to stay awake so that I could experience a vision…
This is Part I of a two part article, join me for the second installation as we delve into the Healing affects of Huachuma San Pedro, participating in a plant medicine ceremony with others (one of the most intimate events we can partake in), unfolding a vision channeled through my Shaman friend and visiting an international Shamanic Festival in Fanlac, France.