A voicehearer’s path ~

Archive for the ‘rebirth’ Category

Sacred Directions ~

sunbearsanimalwheelAn example of the Elders using simple iconic designs to teach deep spiritual truths to the children, is the medicine wheel, and the animal components or teachers from the 7 sacred directions. These are East, South, West, North, Above, Below, and Within. There are two more in most cosmologies, the teachers that are on your left and right sides, guiding your masculine and feminine energies. (The wheel is Sun Bear’s and you need to read his book, Dancing With the Wheel, to get the entire teaching.

Medicine Wheel Wisdom

The way of the Native American Medicine Wheel is not so much that of a medwhlsmreligion as a way of life. It is a perspective of how life works, and is therefore compatible with any belief system that serves good and compassionate purpose.

As we walk the medicine wheel of our own lives, we find that there are seven sacred directions to be traveled.

East ≈ As we are born into this journey, our first direction is the East. This is the place of new beginnings, it is “where” we receive instruction by learning to hear and see what Spirit is saying to us. Most with Eurobred religious backgrounds are sure, when they begin to hear Spirit for the first time that these are messages for the people. This is seldom the case. On this path, Spirit is generally working with individuals for their own well being. It is best to presume from the outset that this is how it is with you.

“There is but One Original Source, learn to heed the messages Spirit is bringing you. The messengers of Spirit are here to help you complete your walk.”

South This is the sacred direction of growth. It is here we grow in stature as well as understanding. {The brevity here has nothing to do with the amount of teaching involved, that could actually only be contained in volume upon volume, it has to do with the individuality of the teaching and the need to heed one’s own truth, rather than make your individual truth a mandate for all mankind.}

“Grow as the Willow that bends and moves in the wind but seldom breaks. Grow in Spirit, grow in Truth, grow in Love.”

West The West is the Sacred Direction in which we take on the mantle of responsibility for ourselves and for the tribe. It is when we have reached this point of growth in our sacred walk that messages from Spirit may have meaning for others as well as ourselves. It is the “place” where we learn what is right to do for ourselves and how not to embroil others in our own dysfunctions.

“Walk with a light step, walk with grace, walk with love.”

North ≈ The North is the place of the Wisdom of the Elders. This is where we learn to honor the wisdom of those who have walked the wheel of life before us. “Here” is where we learn to apply that wisdom, both for ourselves, and for others. This is the point where it is appropriate for us to begin to pass on the wisdom that we have learned as we have walked the wheel.

“Be ever mindful that what we do affects Mother Earth and all her children for seven generations hence.”

Above This is where we learn to honor Creator in everything we do and say. It is from this perspective that we learn that all of life is actually a prayer. Nothing we do or are is ever hidden, all will be revealed in the end, so the best thing we can do is live our lives by the light we now have, and hope for the best possible results.

“From the stars we came, to the stars we shall return.”

Below This is the “Place” in our lives where we learn how to maintain our grounding in this plane of reality. Those who are truly aware have a tendency, unless they put forth a great deal of effort, to “wander off” into mental or astral realms, and forget that part of our mission is to learn to be “here, now”. In learning to be present in the here & now, we will learn to cope with what we have been given. {For most people, the animal that guides you here will be very much a clue as to what brought you back to live another life, and what will continue to bring you back until you resolve the issue.}

“Walk in balance, remembering always that we are astral beings living in bodies made of clay.”

Within This is our sacred space. This is the place within us that we are to hold separate, where no one else is welcome except by invitation. It is here we learn to honor our own boundaries and those of others. It is here we learn to appreciate who we are and what we have been given. It is here we learn not to desire to be someone else, it is here we learn that all “things” are held in stewardship, nothing is ever truly “owned”, so, even the act of stealing without intent to repay is a defilement of our own sacred space.

“Honor your own truth and walk your path accordingly.”

image004This is an encapsulation of the teaching, and by no means even comes close to the depth you can discover about yourself if you pay attention to what this has to say to you. When you display this symbol, or one like it, you are telling all around you that this is the teaching you honor with your life. There is no one among the elders that would prevent you from honoring their ways, but I suspect that any you would ask would also prefer that you walk with a light step, and a clean heart, serving Great Spirit, (Holy) with kindness and compassion for all that cross your path. Remember that the “First People” welcomed the first “Boat People”, it was the boat people that in an ungracious manner began the killing that swept across this land over the next few hundred years.


Renewal ~

inipi002Each year, as the calendar moves gently but inexorably toward the spring, we begin to think of renewal, of the rebirth of the plants that blanket our lawns and gardens, of the rebirth of life on all levels, including our own.  I remember being taught that Christianity taught rebirth of the soul through Jesus Christ, and that no other faith taught any sort of rebirth. I still wonder if that pastor knew what he said was a lie, or if it was just ignorance.

The Native American means of renewal or rebirth is the sweat lodge, or inipi, in the Lakota language of the Souix.  During that ceremony one enters the womb of the mother (Earth) and via the ceremony and ones sincere prayers experiences a literal rebirth upon exit from the lodge. I have been through this ceremony more than once, and that is not an exaggeration. There are purification ceremonies among the Buddhists, and among nearly every group that aims toward better or higher living among it’s adherents. Through these ceremonies, one “washes away” the past and is born anew, to deal with life from a new chartres2perspective. It is very effective, and, at least among the Natives of North America, one can repeat the process later, when it is necessary.

Even in Christianity one can access a renewal when it is needed. This is via the labyrinth, whether you use the Chartre path or another, the prayerful, meditational walk through the steps of a labyrinth can give one new insight into one’s life. Even in the lives of those who do not follow particular ceremonies, but who experience a quintessential spirituality just in the living from one day to another, there is a sense of renewal that automatically comes with the spring.

It is in the release from the snow, which often keeps us indoors unless we are a winter sports person, from the new warmth in the air, from the new flowers that blossom all over the place, everything simply feels new. This sense of renewal can give us new purpose, or revive the purpose we knew before, it doesn’t matter, it’s so refreshing and so wonderful. No faith has a stranglehold on this feeling, or it’s purpose, Mother Nature is the authoress, even for those who do not believe there is such a thing as the Holy Spirit. Amazing! Absolutely amazing!

spring-flowers-1

In the Spider’s Web ~

marenostrumuniverseMost often when scientists come to conclusions, the cosmology of the ancients is displaced with newer and wider observations. This time, however, on Naked Science, I heard a phrase that made a great deal of sense. According to their scientific observers, the structure of parts of the universe resemble nothing so much as a spider’s web.

To the Native American Holy People, those who go on vision quest and see into other realms, the teachings have been for generations that Grandmother Spider was one of Wakan Tanka’s helpers in creating our universe. Since she had visited me some time ago, appearing three consecutive days at my place of work. (White sac spider, quite poisonous, but it was outdoors, and I gave a tobacco offering each time,) I have tried to absorb all I could of the teachings about her, as that had never happened to me before.

“In the beginning, there was the dark purple light at the dawn of being. Spider iktomishaWoman spun a line to form the east, west, north, and south. Breath entered man at the time of the yellow light. At the time of the red light, man proudly faced his creator. Spider Woman used the clay of the earth, red, yellow, white, and black, to create people. To each she attached a thread of her web which came from the doorway at the top of her head. This thread was the gift of creative wisdom. Three times she sent a great flood to destroy those who had forgotten the gift of her thread. Those who remembered floated to the new world and climbed to safety through the Sipapu Pole the womb of Mother Earth.”

Her “medicine” is about creativity, about numbers and letters, and writing and mathematics. All those things which help us make sense of our world. I took her instruction to mean the working more thoroughly with my art, and try to do at least a little art work every day. She is considered the Holy Web Weaver, connecting our past, present, and future.

Rebirth ~

What is this phenomenon? Is it really necessary? I did a Google search on rebirth, and saw an ad by Playstation that rather caught my breath. Adult female, assisted by female (Dr?) with an adult male covered in what looked like myconium as though head coming from birth canal. Interesting. Almost frightening. I had to check it out to make sure no new cult was using such weird techniques to imitate the emotionality that accompanies the phenomenon in the churches.

Seriously, is the “born again” phenomenon actively pursued in the more fundamental churches what Y’shua was addressing when he spoke of being born again? Personally, I don’t think he was being all that oblique, I think he was addressing reincarnation. When such a question would be asked of him, he who was so totally aware of Spirit, could most likely tell, just because of that awareness, where a person “was” spiritually. With that, he would know if one needed to live another life or three before one could arrive at the awareness of Spirit needed to “enter into” the kingdom.

I remember being told many years ago, in the church where I was attending, that Christianity was the only faith where such a phenomenon was taught. I was quite disappointed to find that that was yet another lie. An awakening of some sort is taught in every major faith on the planet, and many that are not even counted major faiths.

The words death and rebirth are quoted in John’s Gospel as being Y’shua’s. (Many teachers of Christianity teach that one will go to everlasting damnation if one even looks at the inner workings of another faith, a convenient way to keep people ignorant of their dishonesty as well as to keep people in the Flock who might otherwise feel that, all things considered they might as well join the Hamayim). So, let’s look at Y’shua’s teachings:

3In reply Jesus declared, “I tell you the truth, no one can see the kingdom of God unless he is born again.[a]

5Jesus answered, “I tell you the truth, no one can enter the kingdom of God unless he is born of water and the Spirit. 6Flesh gives birth to flesh, but the Spirit[b] gives birth to spirit. 7You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You[c] must be born again.’ 8The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.”

4“How can a man be born when he is old?” Nicodemus asked. “Surely he cannot enter a second time into his mother’s womb to be born!”

John chapter 3 is the basis of much of what the church believes about this phenomenon, and written the way it is, there is little doubt that it is some enigmatic phenomenon that has to do with belief in him as the one and only Son of God. The problem I have with that is that, even among his most beloved disciples, all of whom attended shul, he would have been stoned to death if he put his teachings into those words. And he would have been making a liar out of Moshe(Moses), who had said that Hashem(God) had said he would never ever incarnate. Something every one of his Jewish followers would have known extremely well, and who also knew the penalty for saying one was God. (I suspect this is the reason the preachers so dislike it when we mere humans decide we want to read the Tanakh as it was written.)

There are few ignorant among the Ivrit (Hebrews), as every child whose parent follows the old laws is taught at the very least temple Hebrew.  So, how did Y’shua get away with saying he was God incarnate for three years until the Romans finally tired of his rabble rousing? I don’t think he did. And I do believe he may have taught about rebirth as reincarnation,  he might have even talked of Awakening to God’s Grace, but I doubt if he talked about being God in the flesh, not even in roundabout ways.

I have searched Y’shua’s teachings extensively, and I have found no indication that he intended for our pilgrimage to be a series of emotional highs and lows. In Luke 14, in fact, he spoke of counting the cost before you leap to say you can do it, whatever “it” is. He wanted those who followed his teachings to do so in a well thought out and steadfast manner. This does not call for high emotion, this calls for studying and knowing what is asked of you.

We are meant to walk the path, not run, not skip, not hop, walk it, in a gentle and steadfast manner, by making a decision to live that way, not by getting “high on God”, that might be fun, but, such an emotive decision early in one’s life seldom leads to obedience and compassion.

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