The Flame and The Snake

I just did two meditations back to back. The first was Ariel’s Avalon Journey, which got me into a very relaxed trance, and I did the work necessary to help get over my fears of starting up as a drummer for a band practice tonight, my first ever. The second, I did the Flame meditation from Peter Paddon, while listening to Dragon Ritual Drummers. This produced a very different kind of meditation, that I wouldn’t exactly call relaxing, and yet a great way of facing one’s fears. I envisioned again the symbol given to me by my named guide. This time I saw it engulfed in flames before I let the image drop into blackness. I fell into the abyss, and found myself in the landscape of a disturbing painting filled with casualties of war. I stepped over them with a detached feeling. I told my mind to leave this place, asking my named guide to help. He took me to a beach along the Norwegian fjords in the middle of the night. It seemed I was both on a boat being guided by Hel, and on the sand dancing around stone-ringed fire. I felt like I was both male and female. Sparks floating up into the dark, midnight sky. I started snapping a branch of tree (birch, I told myself it to be) against the sand in time with the drumming. Suddenly, a monstrously sized sea-snake emerged from the waters and seemed to dance in time with me. It swayed to the beat. It sensed me with its long tongue. Suddenly, I was on top of it, riding it like a horse. All the while, I could feel my heart beating impossibly hard inside my chest as I lie there on the bed. I could almost feel the fire within me burning. The whole experience made me afraid and there was something anciently familiar and primal about it. I remember thinking, “ancestors” through the whole thing. I imagined myself leaping up to the tree pillars where I’d dove through the darkness and stood standing for a moment before I got out of bed. It’s taken me a good while to stop shaking.

This was such a different kind of meditative experience than I’ve ever had. And I’ve had some wicked, prophetic and intense meditations. But this one, instead of taking me into the “future” of my linear existence, it seemed to take me to the “past”. To an impossibly long-ago past. I use the quotes to refer to time as we understand it, yet acknowledging my belief as Time being non-linear and therefore, to some extent, non-relevant to the soul’s journey and evolution. It’s all relevant, of course, for every day is a lesson in which we learn and grow. But overall, I think Time is quite nebulous. It’s like these recurring dreams I have in which I’m the current me, but I’m doing something else, or when my soul is me, but my body is someone else. I believe dreams are the places our mind takes us to help us understand the ineffable. And this meditation…it was like tapping into a kind of pulse, a fiery pulse, deep within. It felt similar to when I’ve done “warrior” work, for lack of a better term. When I’m trying to call in strength and courage to face difficult situations, I’ve listened to a song called The Morrigan by OMNIA (the one I danced to as a crow) and as the song builds, I breathe hard and fast, trying to become courage itself, to let go of fear, to dive into terror, in order to face the hard thing, sometimes a situation, sometimes haunting memories. I can feel this disturbing pulse beat grow within me, as if blood and bone have come alive. As if shadow grew black wings and took flight, my soul riding it into the consuming dark of the cosmos. It’s frightening, and yet, I feel stronger for having faced it, even if just for a second.

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