I follow a shamanic path that calls for the practical/physical understanding of my world to be combined with a spiritual understanding. The result is something greater than the parts. The understanding is neither only physical nor is it only spiritual. The attainment of this metaphysic sum becomes dependent on my understanding the world around me and the world inside me. Knowledge is combined with experience to give me wisdom, the thing most need for understanding.
My physical environment is made up of animals, trees and minerals native to this land. My understanding of the multi-layered spiritual environment is informed by the voices and understandings of the elders – grandmothers and grandfathers – that came before me. They lived with the land, deriving spiritual insight into how to communicate and commune with the land. They knew the heartbeat of physical environment, relying on their understanding to sustain them both physically and spiritually. The two meshed, resulting in a way of life that fully embraced the land I now live in.
The land has a memory and a vibration. Communing with the land requires me to embrace the vibration while calling on the memory. The rocks, trees and animals were present here before the land’s first humans walked beside them. While I look to the elders for guidance, it is to the beings of the land that I seek fullest communion. The beings know how they have been spoken to in the past.
The land remembers the humans that came before me. I pick up tools similar to what my elders used because it is these tools that the land recognizes. I honor the tools while I use them, acknowledging the sacred place that they still hold, for time is eternally cyclical in their use. Eventually I put the tools away, recognizing that they are a path to connection and not the connection itself. The beings of the land will share with me how I can best walk with them. Ultimately, my communion with the land rests in pragmatically living with the beings of the land while embracing the spiritual connections that are always present.