These are transition times, times of initiation. Everything is speeding up and morphing into something never seen before. 2016 was like the main attraction at a circus with extreme highs, lows and an abundance of eccentricity everywhere you looked. Or, like a roller coaster that is both exhilarating and terrifying. Due to such extremes, it can be difficult to keep up with the relentless pace of growth, feel grounded, witness outrageous events with an open heart and cultivate the stamina to show up in empowered ways. Curling into a ball, disengaging from the world or burying your head in the sand is not a wise investment of time or energy. Nor is projecting and lashing out at others with anger, blame and victimhood. We have to participate in this great collective unfoldment and, in so doing, share our own unique contribution to the whole. Otherwise we get left behind and stuck with a version of reality that’s outdated, irrelevant and not our own.
To shamans, yogis and serious spiritual practitioners initiation is the name of the game. Initiation is also the overarching theme for 2017. Initiation involves the process of intense transformation, of transitioning from one state of consciousness into a new order of knowledge, connection and power. In modern times there are cultural events and rituals associated with specific rites of passage. Yet true initiation is sourced from within. It’s an internal quickening of one’s spirit that creates creative friction and heat with the personality/ego, a radical shift and process of metamorphosis. This internal pressure encourages (and at times forces) us to change, step up, shed our old skin and take our lives to the next level. To do otherwise is inviting great suffering as we cling to an old dream.
Maybe you are in a big transition right now or even in the midst of a full blown initiation of epic proportions. Perhaps the great change in the world is weighing you down as you are drawn in by the wake of collective transformation and feel forced to keep up. What can you do?
Take responsibility. Own your power.
Initiation can be extremely overwhelming at times and it’s easy to fall into a victim mentality. Yet, believing yourself a victim is fundamentally a powerless stance and casts a vote of no confidence to engage proactively with life. Wanting to adapt and positively change while simultaneously believing one a victim is like trying to swim in quicksand, a contradictory and most futile task.
As a foundational first step, it’s pivotal to take responsibility for the transformational period you are in. You have to ruthlessly clean up all thoughts and beliefs sourced in victimhood, that you are trapped and controlled by external influences and unable to make a choice or take action. It’s important to acknowledge that deep down your essence orchestrated this entire growth period in order to change, learn, mutate and evolve.
Accepting responsibility allows us to own and reclaim our power; it invokes the necessary neutrality to move forward despite the wants/needs, attachments or any delusional storylines of the ego.
Call on Support.
Taking responsibility doesn’t mean you beat yourself up and find fault and guilt in past choices made. Nor does it mean going it alone as an individual bereft of help. On the contrary, now more than ever we have great assistance and support to draw upon. Spiritually speaking, we are always interconnected to a web of helping energies that wish our lives to flourish and expand. These invisible, powerful and subtle (and at times not so subtle) influences are there to be communicated and collaborated with. In addition, the world is full of incredibly talented teachers, healers and mentors that can help usher you through the birth canal of transformation.
One of the ways to bring our spiritual allies into closer proximity is to ‘feed’ them. Just as expressing gratitude, mutual respect and love to a fellow human (or pet) will deepen the bonds of friendship, the spirit world is no different. It’s a wonderful idea to make devotional offerings of appreciation daily to those energies that support and sustain you. In so doing, they’ll have your back in a more tangible and concrete way and the energies of initiation will be streamlined and supported through their helping hands. Here’s an article I wrote in 2015 explaining how to do so: Art of Reciprocity.
Surrender, Trust and Receptivity.
A successful initiation cannot be accomplished without surrender and trust. Of course, these two qualities are like kryptonite to the ego mind and its need to control and micromanage every facet of life. The ego is conditioned from the past and all the impressions, imprinting and karmas that have led to our current experiences and beliefs. Meanwhile, initiation is sourced from essence and the heart and seeks to shatter that conditioning and vastly expand our perceptions.
To live a path with heart and essence we have to trust we have an essence, surrender the ego mind’s attachments over to that essence and learn to receive the bounty of our true medicine, the inner shaman/teacher. As we learn the art of surrender and trust, we open ourselves to receiving clarity and intuitive vision that is sourced outside the box of our conditioned mind.
In initiatory times, the answers we seek are often cloaked in mystery and demand we question, contemplate and ultimately embrace a quest to ‘know thyself’. To do so is a great act of surrender and trust and opens one to the epic adventure that life truly is.
Self-Initiate with Willingness, Courage and Enthusiasm.
Initiation can arrive when we set strong intentions or voice deep prayers for change. Or, it can come unbidden by the personality or culture as a catalyst of essence, forcing us to change in ways we’re currently resisting. Once you’ve taken responsibility, called on support and deeply surrendered, the final step is to self-initiate, to become at one with the process of transformation and to engage willingly in that process. Or, like my Dad used to say, ‘you take the bull by the horns’.
To do this, cultivate willingness, courage and enthusiasm daily. Willingness to change and look at the truth of a situation. Courage to move forward regardless of the doubts, fears and resistances that plague you. And become grounded in enthusiasm. Enthusiasm is derived from Greek and means ‘to become possessed by Spirit’. It’s the natural, ecstatic outcome of connecting with the ‘Spirit within’ and following that inner compass with willingness and courage.
You are not powerless in a world of chaotic, random energies. Nor are you powerless in the face of external authority structures that fail to represent your values. No. You are a unique expression of the Great Spirit embodied at a particularly challenging time in the history of planet Earth. In initiatory times, the path forward is not easy. True initiation rarely is.
We wholeheartedly encourage you to embrace the paradox of these times, engage in the dance of change and initiate yourself, and by proxy the world, into a radical new dream that is born from your soul’s deepest yearnings. Remember who you are and broadcast the light of your soul. In so doing you become an initiate upon the path of heart.
Have an amazing 2017!
Need extra support? Deva is currently accepting new clients for remote shamanic healing & intuitive consultation sessions. These appointments are incredibly useful for clearing out fear, shock and trauma, moving through grief and loss, gaining spiritual insight into challenging, confusing or tricky situations and removing blocks that may have you feeling stuck.
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