Journey to the Lower World

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In Awakening to the Spirit World Sandra Ingerman recommends visiting the Lower World first to meet one of your power animals. She also recommends choosing an entrance to the Lower World, one that you will remember, one that seems right for you. I chose an entrance to some underground caverns I visited a few years before.

So on June 1st, 2011 I sat on my meditation cushion on the living room floor. First I played track one of her CD in order to get into the proper frame of mind. It’s only five minutes long. Next I launched track three, fifteen minutes long. My intention was to meet my first animal spirit guide.

As track three started I pictured ‘flying’ to the location where the caverns were. Then I pictured myself entering the underworld through the entrance. I don’t know what I expected, but my first encounter was with a beaver who stood waiting by the entrance. I knew he would lead me to other power animals (there were two more). We entered the cavern, the beaver in the lead. At first it was dark, then it got lighter and we entered a garden space that was in the open air. Nearby was a pond. There were plants, grass, trees and a sky overhead. On a low branch was a large bird. At the foot of the tree was a fox.

These were two of my power animal spirit guides: a red-tailed hawk and a brown fox. I petted each of the three animals and I asked them to show me things about healing and what I needed to know at this point in along my path. Many images flashed through my mind but I couldn’t remember them after the journey. Sometimes this happens. However I did feel healing energies from each of the animals. After this experience I decided my next attempt would include asking my animal guides to lead me to my Spirit Guide in the Upper World. I ended the journey as track three was ending.

Honestly, I didn’t expect to have a beaver as one of my power animals. I wanted, you know, a tiger or a lion, something very manly and strong. As I would learn, we don’t get to choose our power animals. They present themselves to us and they represent qualities which are important for our development along our path. Sometime in 2013 I bought a copy of Ted Andrew’s book Animal Speak. I find it is a wonderful guide to animal totems. After I read about my power animals in his book I appreciated them more and was pleased with the types of help they provide me. I’ll say this again and again as I blog, in Spirit Walking it is important to keep an open mind. If you experience something you don’t understand, remember it and study information about the animal or event and you will come to understand what significance it has for you. In a later post I will talk about my primary power animals in more detail and what they mean.

Next blog: Spirit Walking in the Upper World and an emotional meeting with my first human spirit guide

Research and First Journey

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The day after my encounter with the two Hawaiian spirits I got online and looked for books on Hawaiian spirituality. I ordered three and they arrived within a few days. The book that helped me discover my path was The Bowl of Light by Dr. Hank Wesselman. Dr. Wesselman is a cultural anthropologist who encountered shamanism and has written several books on the subject. The Bowl of Light describes how he formed a friendship with Hale Makua, an important figure in Hawaiian spiritual culture. The story of this friendship helped me understand that shamanic practice was the path I needed to know more about. Reading all three books kept me busy through most of May, 2011.

May 26th I searched online for books on shamanism and came across “Awakening To The Spirit World: The Shamanic Path of Direct Revelation” by Sandra Ingerman and Hank Wesselman. The book arrived on May 29th and I started reading it right away. I didn’t know it when I ordered it, but the book comes with a CD that has four sound tracks of drums and other instruments to facilitate shamanic journeying. I listened to the first track that prepares you for your journey and then gave a quick listen to the other three tracks to get a feel for what they offered.

While listening to track one I ‘encountered’ a very old American Indian man who was sitting in front of me. At first I was tempted to reject the image but then I just let things happen. Since this was my first journey, though I didn’t realize it at the time, I acknowledged him respectfully with a nod and just listened to the rest of the track. The little I heard of the beginning of Track 3 actually gave me a tingling sensation over my heart. Later as I read the book it advised that we need to breath into our hearts while journeying because the shaman “sees” with his/her heart.

Next blog: Journey to the Lower World

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