Wednesday, 15 June 2016

Me and the Church

On my Shamanic Practitioner course with the Sacred Trust in Dorset ( I met two Spirit Guides who were biblical characters. I was puzzled by this as most of the other participants on the course had guides who were ancient gods or spirits of the land and nature. I had been brought up to be an atheist and was very suspicious about religion and the damage that dogma can do. These guides told me first to read the Bible and then to read the Koran. I did whip through them quickly, but I need to go into much greater depth with them both.

Anyway, last year my guides told me to start going to church. So, I went to my local village Church of England church. As the service progressed I began to find the experience very emotional. I was letting go of a huge prejudice. I was tearful and the kindly lady next to me held my hand. I was made very welcome, that day and since, by the congregation.

So, I have continued to attend the church on Sunday mornings. The congregation is small and dwindling for the ordinary services but bigger and more varied for the monthly "Pick and Mix" service which includes activities for children. I am using these attendances as an opportunity to remind myself of "The Other" or God or Great Spirit. In my busy day-to-day life I often get disconnected from it. I have had some precious experiences in that church: feeling myself being hugged by Jesus; suddenly being touched by a truth; being stopped in my tracks by a presence.

I am still wondering what my purpose is there. I am sure the other members of the congregation would be shocked by some of my experiences and beliefs.  But I still go as often as I can.

Focusing and Shamanism

I am fascinated by the ways that these two fields merge with one another.

When studying focusing I was soon convinced that it is a way to access our 'higher self'. The part of us that is in connection with the Great Spirit, God, the Universe, whatever you want to call it. Focusing always brings about healing of some kind but it can bring with it a wisdom that is impossible to find in our brain or in our everyday life. We are shown a bigger picture, a less self-centred approach and we are given completely new and original insights into our difficulties and our aspirations.

In shamanic journeys we meet power animals and spirit guides who give us wise advice and new ways of viewing our lives. I have also worked with people who have discovered while focusing helpful animals and human protectors in the guise of Fairy Godmothers, Gods, Magicians, Angels, Saints, Jesus, etc.

One particular common practice is soul retrieval. When we suffer a trauma of some kind a part of our soul 'splits off' from our normal field of activity. These soul parts seem to do this to keep themselves safe, but, once split off, they cease to develop in the same way as the rest of our being. They are still small children or frightened adults. However, they still act upon us at times, especially when we are stressed, and make us behave like frightened children.

The shaman or shamanic practitioner is able to journey into non-ordinary reality to bring back these soul parts so that they can be re-integrated into the whole person of the client. Often there are stipulations that the client must change certain practices or ways of being so that the soul part will stay.

Focusing works in much the same way. The focuser makes contact, through a bodily 'felt sense', with the split-off part, negotiates with it and is able, eventually to re-integrate it into the self. Again, the focuser must change certain things in his or her life so that the part is able to stay.

I think focusing is the easiest method to teach people. It is very simple to learn and they can do it by themselves, or with a partner to listen to them. There is no need for a professional or expert to get involved.

I love teaching both practices. It is so fascinating following people into these realms of discovery.

Focusing. My first blog.

The other day I was doing some Focusing with my focusing partner (we meet on a fortnightly basis).

I found a 'felt sense' in the upper part of my body. The next part of the process is to focus on the felt sense and describe it. As I described its colour, shape, texture, etc. the metaphor of a bottle of Stephens ink appeared. When I was a child a bottle of 'proper' ink was a luxury, compared with the cloggy powder ink we had in our inkwells at school. A new bottle made me think that I should use it to write carefully and meaningfully.

The message was that it is time for me to start writing a blog.

I have spent many years learning and having wonderful experiences. There is no point in keeping all of these things to myself. I need to pass on what I have learned. And a blog seems to be the best way to do it.

After having made the decision I dallied about putting it into practice. Then, last Sunday I was praying for guidance and I was given a microphone.

Having been presented with these two wonderful metaphors I got into action and... Voila!  Here it is!