i had hoped Ele would write here something, but since she didn't I'm forced to share something of my own (oh, noes!). I'd like to tell you about my first spirit journey. not because it is anything never seen before, but because it is the story of doing what I believed impossible, something I thought I was unworthy of, and succeeding beyond all my expectations.
some days after Ele had her first astral journey, like one or two, I thought that if things were getting serious, I might as well have started playing, and decided to try directly exactly what I wanted to do most in my whole life: journeying into the spirit world. you might say, well, if you knew what you wanted, why didn't you try it before? so, here's why: I was waiting for the right opportunity, for a shaman who knew what he was doing and would help me decipher what I found. the reason was mainly because all the research I had done about the subject either told of shamans who knew because they were shamans, or random people who did it and wrote on the internet that it was basically a daydream, a flight of your imagination. I have for a long time been scared of mistaking my imagination for reality, mostly because I've got lots of it, so the only other choice was to track down a true shaman and convince them to teach me. this was of course very difficult for me first of all because nobody had chosen me to the best of my knowledge, while shamans are chosen by the spirits, or they know they are meant to be shamans. I didn't know I was meant to be anything, I just wanted to visit the spirit world. actually, I wanted it badly, very badly, it had been like the next thing to do in my life for a long long time, long postponed and put aside for a while, but always there, sleeping. I didn't know, but this desire was enough.
when we arrived in Equator, we met a shaman, a wonderful guy, who soon became our friend. when I told him I wanted to learn to go into the spirit world consciously and without relying on plants, he told me, rightly, that it took years to learn. so my idea, the plan I was going to follow to get where I wanted to be, was shot down at the first step.
the only thing that remained was to trust myself and the whole world, because I believed I could do it and that I would be taken care of while I was doing it.
but the hardest part was to trust my imagination. it was admitting to myself that everything I imagined could be more than just a fantasy. so I decided to try, to use a website I had found a bit earlier to get an instruction guide, and prepared myself to throw away my time imagining a familiar place. I closed my eyes, wrapped myself in the awesome alpaca blanket we had bought just few days before, and remembered my vacation house in the coast of Italy. the instructions told me to look for a hole in the ground, and I did, because I was playing along with the whole "shamanic journey is more than imagination even if you are imagining everything". I found the hole in the place I thought it would be best for it to be, and crawled through it until I emerged in a clearing in the woods. now, admittedly, the woods were not my invention, I hadn't thought about them, but I distracted myself from realizing it through thinking about the next step, which involved asking the animals I found if they were my animal guide. as soon is I thought about that, I saw a lot of animals, like a whole army waiting. first a stag neared, and I asked him if he was my animal guide, and he said no. I was a little afraid he might say yes, because I had a lot of expectations, but it didn't happen. the next to come along was a coyote, and I braced myself for a long line of not my spirit animal guide, so I asked him if it was him, and he shook his head. I was relieved, but there was a pause, and coyote being coyote, with a smirk that would have been impossible to miss even if he had been masquerading as a mountain, nodded. I was very flustered: it was a mistake, a trick of my imagination, how could it happen so soon? and with coyote, with whom I had never had any relation before, I didn't even like him particularly, come on! I stopped the journey right there, in disbelief, and maybe even opened my eyes.
then, with more calm, I asked myself: is it really possible that coyote truly is my animal spirit guide? the answer came up as a sensation of happiness mixed with recognition mixed with fun for the whole situation which was admittedly fun, if you looked at it from outside (I've since learnt that very often coyote's humor is like that, it looks fun from the outside, and if you're a good sport you laugh even when you're caught in it. if you can do that, you're probably coyote's kind of person).
empowered by this realization, I returned to the scene I had left, and listened as my imagination whisked me away in a story I wasn't consciously making up. first I got to know my guide, feeling his energy, the sensations he transmitted. he felt very safe, and cuddly, almost like a dog, but much more fun. then in a moment he had decided we were going for a stroll ... somewhere... and we were trekking in the woods.
then the woods opened and a motley of people greeted us in the clearing, among small trees, like a orchard. it was the fair folk, the faeries, the elves and all the other beings that live within the natural places, just out of reach of our physical senses (I know, I've tried, with a stone with a hole and everything). I was blown away by the feeling, the recollection of all the moments in my teens when I was desperately looking for them and not finding them, without realizing that the faeries were already close, connected to me through my heart, speaking in sensations and intuitions. it was the strongest feeling, like coming home and finding your best friends waiting for you at the door. in that moment, I was interrupted, and I had to stop the journey an to begin doing all the things you're supposed to do in the morning.