Carpe Diem! Seize the Present Moment and make the most of 2021! For better or worse, 2020 is behind us and the theme for 2021 is re-birth, growth and new beginnings. We have experienced personal and collective pain. We long to feel at peace again and wonder how to move forward and transform ourselves and others into good health and spiritual well-being. We want to heal our own wounds, traumas, limiting beliefs, and grief and also the collective grief of our culture and our world.
The blogs this month will focus on One Spirit Medicine which identifies one ailment and one cure. The ailment is alienation from our feelings, from our bodies, from the Earth, and from Spirit. The cure, One Spirit Medicine, is the experience of primeval Oneness, which restores inner harmony and facilitates recovery from all maladies, regardless of origin. Breaking through the doorway to oneness involves upgrading your brain by reducing stress, eliminating sugar, excess protein and toxins from our guts so you can access the “spirit molecule.”
You may be shaking your head wondering how a diet change can help us to feel peace and begin the process of healing our wounds and grief. Shamans know that the 4 levels of perception; serpent, jaguar, hummingbird and eagle, are an ascending map to accessing the neocortex, the God brain, and finding new and better answers to our problems by changing our perception, so that we can be the change we want to see in the world. We can foster this by changing our diets.
When we see problems exclusively through the eyes of serpent, we try to come up with physical solutions. We lock ourselves in our homes, wear masks, move somewhere away from the city, and hope that a vaccine will protect us. At Serpent, we rely totally on our instinctual senses and don’t reflect more deeply on our problems. We’re operating from that part of the brain we share with lizards and dinosaurs — that is, we’re aware of our physical bodies, but we’re not cognizant of our mental, creative, and spiritual selves. In this state, we perceive outer form and accept only the obvious, remaining blind to our feelings and those of others. We’re devoid of rich, complex thinking, and simply act and react.
Jaguar perception is associated with the mammalian brain, that of emotion and deep feelings of love, intimacy, family, caring, and compassion. Yet it’s also the brain of aggression, superstition, amulets and charms. The language of the level of jaguar is spoken or written words, which we use to form and express ideas, beliefs, and feelings. Here we understand symbols and signs and can agree that certain sounds are words that mean something specific. In Jaguar, we can be seduced by conspiracy theories, we can feel that it’s impossible to tell truth from fiction, news from false news and flounder in despair.
Hummingbird’s perceptual state is that of the soul. The language of this level is image, music, poetry, and dreams — it’s the realm of myth, where the soul can experience itself on a sacred journey yearning to drink only from the nectar of life.
At the soul level, things are what they truly are—an expression of the sacred. A house is not simply a roof over your head, it’s a home. A spouse is not merely a person you share household and child-rearing duties with, but a chosen partner, a fellow traveler on a great journey. In this state, we are able to understand the importance of breaking bread with others, and how our belly can never be adequately filled when others go hungry in the world.
At the level of hummingbird, we listen below the surface of conversations and hear their hidden messages. We understand illness to be the warning light that something needs our attention, and we don’t treat the symptom alone. We look for ways to live our soul’s longing and bring about the change we want to see in the world. We see paths that will lead us back to health, and we undertake a healing journey. This is why visualization is so much more powerful than just reciting affirmations.
At the level of eagle, when we face a difficulty, the closer we can get to the level of Spirit, the less energy we need to effect change. Downstream, we can see war and create more weapons, we see a pandemic and create vaccines. Upstream, we can see the fears that will carry us to war, the actions which unleashed a pandemic, both of which are much easier problems to address.
Accessing our neo-cortex and experiencing Oneness is an ongoing process. At times we lose our way and have to find our way back, but we know the way. And sometimes we just need a little reminder to seize the present moment!
Alberto Villoldo - The Four Winds