I bet you, like everyone else, dreams to live in abundance. That was most likely the first resolution you made for the New Year. We all pray for that lucky winning lottery number, racehorse, or a good hand at the casino that will make us super rich and happy for the rest of our lives. But why is it not happening? Why is it that lottery winners lives, in most cases, do not become better and happier? Why are many people miserable in spite of their riches?
Recently, I asked participants in shamanic seminars in Tuscany and Israel to envision, with the help of their spirit guides, the questions of how Material and Spiritual Abundance manifest for them through shamanic journeying. I asked them to be specific in their answers.
As we sat in a circle sharing our visions, a simple common thread between the imagined Material and Spiritual abundance emerged: a feeling of unlimited personal freedom, immense well-being and joy. We all agreed that we are both materialistic and spiritual beings. No matter what our religious beliefs, both sides need to be acknowledged and rewarded in order for us to feel truly happy.
On the material side, many participants shared visions from their journeys that I expected: lavish villas, fancy cars and chauffeurs, gold, diamonds and pearls, travels to exotic lands, unlimited shopping, elegant clothing, private islands, staff taking care of them, and an unending supply of money to do whatever they want. Interestingly, most people dreamed up possessions for just themselves and their immediate families. What was unexpected was that many participants were surprised by how unimaginative they were in their conceptions of Material abundance; they didnt feel that they were really envisioning what they truly wanted. Some also realized they really dont want much at all.
On the other hand, when envisioning their versions of Spiritual abundance, many participants received messages encouraging altruism, like sharing the Earths resources, universal love, and universal peace. They saw breathtaking images of colorful rainbows and landscapes, and heard birds chirping and heavenly music. Those are things we can share and enjoy with others.
So, on the one hand, we have Material abundance, which encourages individualism, and on the other we have Spiritual abundance, which encourages community and sharing. How can we achieve both?
The great teacher The River
A river is a perfect place to start. Its the perfect teacher to contemplate and meditate on life. Some years ago at Harriman Park, Upstate New York, I sat by a stream, closed my eyes, and fell into deep meditation. The clear, cold water rushed down the densely forested mountain. It twisted its way between huge and small ancient dark rocks, brought down by the previous ice age from far away, creating small pools and waterfalls covered with green moss, white foam, and sweet bubbly sounds. Thought flowed through my mind:
Some leaves and branches continue downstream and some get stuck and rot out. Do they rot to give life for others? Is this is their purpose? Water never stops – it finds ways around the rock and moves on. Those powerful hard rocks are polished and smoothed by the never-ending stream of soft water. Water congregates in a muddy pool, giving life to mosquitoes, frogs, dragonflies, and others. Would the trees be here if it wasnt for this stream? What is happening under the perfectly calm surface? Where does the water come from and where does it go from here? What does it carry with it? Why does it never stop running?
The indigenous shamanic wisdom is based on deep observations of nature, accepting that we are an integral part of nature and actively relating this to our own life. From the ancient wisdom of shamanic traditions, we can learn how to better integrate our lives with nature, and identify and remove the blockages that limit our potential in order to let us flow more freely in the river of life.
The Inca way
My teacher Don Jose Joaquin Pineda, a Quechua yachak (Birdman) from the High Andes of Ecuador, often reprimanded those he diagnosed using the traditional candle techniques for their lack of faith. Some asked, Faith in what? And he used to say, Trust in the work of Apus (mountain spirits), Pachamamma (Mother Earth), and Viraqucha (Great Creator).
But, how do you gain faith? they asked. With conviction in his fierce black eyes, he would answer, You need to pray ardently and concentrate on developing full trust in the universe.
But can you learn trust in a world where fear, deceit, and competition for power and resources is the norm? Can you learn trust in the universe when we are so removed from nature ourselves?
The Inca way of bringing abundance into ones life is through an alignment with the Earth, universe, and our soul purpose or mythic vision of our life. Only then you can enter into Ayni , a state in which give and take are in equilibrium, and Pachamamma will provide you with all your needs. A special Despacho offering ceremony is usually performed to bring about abundance with offering of gratitude to Pachamama and the Apus. Participants place many varieties of grains, food, minerals, flowers, emulates, and personal prayers of gratitude or requests into the offering blanket. At the end of the ceremony, the shaman wraps all the offerings in a bundle and "dispatches" it to spirits by burning it in a fire or burying them in the Earth. Fire ceremonies are used by many shamanic traditions to cast off negativity and other obstacles to make room for abundance.
The shamanic belief
Most ancient cultures had Gods or Goddesses of prosperity and abundance, for which they performed special ceremonies and prayers. Some are still celebrated in the present, such as the Bolivian Ekeko, the mustached Andean god, Goddess Lakshmi, honored by Hindus, the Celtic tradition Letha, Isis in old Egypt, Frigga of the Norse, and for the Mongols, goddess Itugen, and many more.
The core shamanic belief is that the Universe was created by the Great Creator perfectly and in full harmony. It can provide humans and all living beings with everything we need for our physical, spiritual, and emotional existence. Truly, there is plenty all around us to support and share with all beings on this Earth. So why is it that so many people live in scarcity? Why do some people lack trust in the possibility that we can all live in abundance, and resort to hoarding fortune and resources at the expense of other Humans and animals?
To believe in the unseen forces of life, you need to give up existential control. By doing so, you gain emotional and spiritual freedom. It all comes down to faith. Scarcity comes from fear of not having enough for me to share with others, and the fear of poverty and of death. It leads to power grabbing, greed, and the distortion of reality. Scarcity is in the service and support of what we call the shadows or evil, the dark forces of the universe.
Removing the obstacles
In addition to having faith in the universe and remembering that you are an integral part of nature, one must remove negative energy that creates obstacles to receiving the abundance that awaits you. It is hard to see energy blocks and to locate them within you. We can only sense their existence in our physical bodies or energy fields using our intuition and sensory powers. The shamanic belief is that we have a few energy centers in our bodies: the Earth center our legs; the fire center the source of our sexual energy, passion and creativity ; the heart center our power to love ; the throat center our ability to express ourselves; the third eye center enables us to see ; and the crown of our head our thought and ideas center.
Some shamans are able to see energy blocks as a dark mass in their clients physical body or illuminated energy body. They learn to scan their clients inner physical and energy bodies with their knowing eyes and intuitive feelings. Shamans in the Amazon and other cultures can see these blockages once they ingest special medicinal plants. Some can locate it through candle reading, in which a client brushes a candle over their body and the candle absorbs their energy. Once lit, the shaman can spot any blockages. Some shamans can lay hands on or above their clients body and detect where negative energy lies by the different temperature it emits from the body. Some people can see it from far away. Some shamans see entities that intrude on a persons body in the form of people or animals. In my healing workshops, I teach many people to successfully see and feel negative energies, and they are always so surprised at their ability to do so.
Where do these obstacles come from?
Most negative energy blockages originate from old fears, guilt put upon us by our immediate family members, energy attacks sent by others, negative beliefs and judgment, previous lifetime incidents, or intervention of passed-on souls. These blockages are obstacles that get in the way of our Material and Spiritual abundance. Sometimes we feel we do not deserve to have what we want. We may have an inner wish to not take on responsibilities, as the more we have, the more we have to take care of.
Throughout the ages, shamans have developed numerous tools and methods to remove these obstacles from their clients, which include: energy extraction and removal; soul retrieval, the process in which the shaman locate a missing part of the clients soul and reunite it back to her clients; blessings and prayers; shamanic journeys with spirit guides to seek knowledge and answers on behalf of the client; positive affirmations and mind meditations; fire ceremonies to burn old negative energy and past and bring transformation; curse removal; invisible cord cutting that connect the clients to unhealthy relationships; and many more. Of course, each culture or tradition does it differently and uses different ingredients based on their locations, but the principles are similar.
Saying Yes to life. Abundance starts with you.
Every shamanic tradition has time-tested techniques for removing the blocks that prevent you from connecting with the flow of life. Our fears, which come from negative experiences or beliefs, convince us that we are not capable, that we're inadequate or undeserving. We deny ourselves, often without even realizing it. Rather than allowing the universe to flow through us, so we can receive the many opportunities it makes available, we stay stuck within our familiar limitations.
Yes. Abundance starts with you. By letting your river flow again, you will start to be in the flow of life and attract abundance to flow with you.
Here are some points to think about and work with. Be grateful and give thanks for everything that happens to you, both the good and the bad. Your friends and your enemies are your teachers; thank them for the opportunity they gave you to learn more about yourself. Dont carry grudges; forgive yourself and others, especially your parents. Find what your life purpose is and what make you joyful and passionate, and pursue it with passion. Find faith in nature, in God, in the great creator; anything can work. To be in the abundance flow is to share and give to others, to your community, and to those who need more then you do.
Image by Wonderlane, courtesy of Creative Commons licensing.