Monday, October 18, 2010

Awakening the Shaman Within by Linda Star Wolf

When I first went to visit Gram Twylah at her home on the reservation she sent me out into the woods and across the field by the creek to have me look for a special rock person. She told me that there would be a stone person waiting to give me a most important message and it was up to me to find it among the millions of rocks there. Whenever I pressed her to give me more direction she simply told me to just sniff the air with my wolf nose and follow my intuition.  She said this was an innate ability in all of us.  While at first we may need a teacher to point the way, ultimately, we must reconnect to our own inner shamanic awareness.

Over time I remembered that there was, indeed, an inner awareness developing inside of me that gave me the guidance needed on my path. This was not something new, but a natural part of myself that I had left behind in my childhood. It felt so good to reconnect with the inner magic of my true being and, in time, to share it with others.  Today I refer to this magic as the "Shaman Within."  The Shaman is one who has learned how to listen to their inner healer and guides and found a path to wholeness that they are compelled to share with “all their relations.”

In times of old, and in a few remote villages still today, there exist authentic healers often referred to as Shamans. The Shaman was a vibrant and active member of the community who knew about healing first hand.  Oftentimes he/she had undergone a life-threatening disease, illness or strange malady and found the path back to wholeness.  Today many people are seeking out indigenous teachers, healers and shamans in an attempt to reclaim something that has been lost in our modern ways of healing.  While I, too, have joined the ranks of thousands of seekers and have been involved with several shamanic teachers, I am no longer looking for a teacher outside of myself to heal me.

With great respect and honor I acknowledge all the teachers I have encountered along the way and know that I still have much to learn.  No doubt I will continue to discover new teachers that have some sage wisdom or advice to impart to me.  However, the once held belief that the power lies with someone or something outside of myself is one that I let go of, rather reluctantly, several years ago.  While one must be careful about spiritual arrogance and feeling like they have arrived, there is also a balance to that kind of thinking.

Anyone who has ever tackled a serious problem or challenge of any kind knows that magical thinking is not the solution.  An honest appraisal and sound action is often the best answer, but how does one know what the next right step is or even where to begin?  The ego mind, which is designed to help us get our needs met, often gets in the way when we need to operate outside of the box to find better answers than the ones we previously have come up with.  I believe that each of us possesses a “Shaman Within” who can lead us to the solutions and answers we seek. This wise one is always present, loves us deeply and will never lead us astray. The Shaman Within is a part of our soul that has retained all of the cellular wisdom of our ancestors and passed it on to each of us through our DNA.

Seneca Wolf Clan Grandmother Twylah Nitsch once said to me, “We are all native to mother earth.”  She was encouraging me to step into my own roots, as she put it, and to embrace my own spiritual path of beauty and power.  Every “real” teacher I have known has encouraged me as well as others to follow our own heart path and to teach others to do the same.  This kind of wisdom passed on to me from my teachers and guides, both on this plane of reality and the invisible ones, has become invaluable and has led me to a deep and intimate relationship with my own inner wisdom keeper or shaman.

My journey not only as a seeker of truth, but as a teacher, counselor and minister, created a deep desire to find safe and more effective ways to make contact with the inner healer.  After many years of practicing as a certified counselor and addictions professional, and simultaneously receiving training in various kinds of breath work, musical journeys, sound healing, bodywork, art, group process, energy work and other types of “shamanic work”, I have brought all of these modalities into a unified system of healing. I took what I consider to be the heart and soul of the breath work techniques and the shamanic teachings, along with depth psychology and my own path of direct experience, and synthesized them all into a powerful, transformative process I call the Shamanic Breath Work Process ™.

The process starts when one begins to hear the call to step on to the path of self-discovery and healing. This may come from a sudden realization or inner vision, or from some sort of illness, or emotional upset and stress. It may come from the death of a loved one, the end of a relationship or a deep yearning to connect more powerfully to spirit. Whatever the reason to consciously begin the journey, once the call has been heard, it is difficult, if not darned near impossible, to ignore.

The Shamanic Breathwork Process ™ is one of the most effective tools I know of to assist people who are seeking inner vision and soul healing. This process teaches one how to enter into a very sacred, powerful ritual space.  With the assistance of the breath, a chakra choreographed musical journey, focused bodywork, artwork, and group sharing, many blocks are released that stand in the way of a person being who they truly are. The breath has a sacred role in most spiritual traditions; there are many references to it in spiritual literature and texts.  It seems we have overlooked the obvious … the creator gave us the key to our own healing and it is right under our own noses. By utilizing the breath to create a natural altered state we are able to contact this powerful “Shaman Within” and awaken our human selves to its wonderful healing potential.

To learn more about the Shaman Within, the Shamanic Breathwork Process™, Venus Rising Institute for Shamanic Healing Arts and Venus Rising University, located at Isis Cove in the beautiful, magical blue mountains of western North Carolina, please visit our web site at www.shamanicbreathwork.org or contact us at 828-631-2305 or venusrising@shamanicbreathwork.org.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

FREE Shamanic Journey with Linda Star Wolf at Unity on the Plaza, Kansas City

Don't miss this FREE opportunity to experience Shamanic Breathwork™ with Linda Star Wolf at Unity on the Plaza in Kansas City, October 13, at 7:30 pm.  Star Wolf will discuss her book, Shamanic Breathwork:  Journeying Beyond the Limits of the Self, and lead a short Shamanic Breathwork™ Journey.  This event is FREE and open to the public.  We'd love to see you there!  Unity on the Plaza is at 707 W. 47th Street, Kansas City, MO 64112.  Click HERE for details.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Star Wolf in Kansas City, October 9 - 13

Star Wolf will be in Kansas City for Embracing the Inner Beloved:  A Shamanic Breathwork™ Weekend of Transformation, October 9 & 10.  She is also offering an additional two days of breathwork journeying, integration and shamanic-psychospiritual healing modalities on October 11 & 12.  You can do just the weekend for $250 or all four days for $600, which includes credits towards certification as a Shamanic Breathwork™ Facilitator or ordainment as a Shamanic Minister in Venus Rising's Global Network.  Click HERE for details.

All Venus Rising programs may also be applied towards gaining a degree through Venus Rising University, the first and only Shamanic Psycho-Spiritual University in North America.  Click HERE to learn more.

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Star Wolf's Welcome

My journey in life has been a spiral path of wholeness that continues to move through cycles of change taking me through many symbolic death and rebirth experiences, which I refer to as “shamanic portals of transformation.” I have learned more than I ever thought possible through a process I will share with you in my future writings, called the Shamanic Breathwork™ process, and the five initiations process called S.H.I.P. Once I have made sense of the lessons on my path and discovered the bigger picture, I am ready to pass on and share both my stumblings and my leaps along the way. In my own spiritual quest, I have always appreciated most those who shared their struggles and victories in an authentic way. That will be my humble attempt within the context of this blog.

I believe that we are all indigenous to this earth. I respect all my relations, whether they be human, animal, plant, mineral, visible or invisible ones. We are all related by the great web of life and sent here from the great beyond. Everything we say and do touches all parts of this magnificent web of creation. If I treat myself or anyone else unfairly, we are all affected in some way. Fortunately, the converse is true, as well. I am not perfect. If I am honest and have humility, I can admit that I will make mistakes as I seek to further evolve my conscious awareness. I can also make living amends by striving to change my negative thoughts and behaviors, and live from a more open-hearted connection to others and to myself. I have learned over time that all the changes I seek in the outer world must begin by looking within myself first. I have also learned that it is imperative that I have the courage to be honest with myself and to look at the “shadow” side of my personality. When I have had the courage to truly know myself better, the light and the dark, I have found the inner strength to change my life and shape-shift myself into the light of my true soul’s image.

From time to time I will share different programs and events that are being offered through my non profit organization (Venus Rising Institute for Shamanic Healing Arts) in my blog, as well as photos, videos and teachings, etc. But the main purpose of this blog is to provide an outlet to share the inner musings of my shamanic spirit and journey, and to hear yours as well. I look forward to connecting with all of you who intuitively know that you, too, are a valuable part of the shamanic process of conscious co-creation and evolution on the planet at this time. We each have a role to play and a soul purpose in the drama unfolding in our world today. Together we can create a better place for all beings on earth to live and leave a powerful legacy for those who are yet to come.

I believe we will all be remembered by future generations for the choices we make during this time of huge evolutionary change. In the words of the wonderful poem, “Summer Day,” by Mary Oliver, “what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”

In Love, In Service, In Gratitude,
Namaste’
Star Wolf
Feb 2nd 2009