Blog: The Shamanic Journey and Metaphor
By Clementine Moss
Editors’ Note: Clementine Moss is a Depth Hypnosis Practitioner and Applied Shamanic Counselor. As a professional musician, she developed ways of connecting to the true self field of consciousness in order to be present fully as a performer. Clem’s music career as a rock drummer, though seeming unlikely for a healer, has provided a perfect metaphor for her when assisting clients in opening to the flow of infinite potential. She writes about the intersection of spiritual practice and a music career at BlissandDrumming.com, and her memoir From Bonham to Buddha and Back: The Slow Enlightenment of the Hard Rock Drummer will be released in Fall. This is an excerpt.
I went on my first Shamanic journey as a kind of intellectual endeavor, and fell thousands of miles into the language of metaphor.
I understand metaphor. I have been blissfully falling into the written word since See Spot Run or something similar. When I learned to read, I remember the rising images from the page, pictures becoming alive because of what the words were spelling out. When I learned to journey, I began to understand the symbols of my inner world.
When we recognize that our stories are not our full identity, then we can release them from ruling us, along with the patterns and behaviors that weight them. I found Eastern meditation practices and discovered my identity beneath stories. I found Shamanism and learned to sneak up behind the stories, unravel them in a way that allows me to clear my perception and experience life, each moment, more fully.
Shamanism as I learned it is about the integrity of power. The teacher must be fully in integrity to teach integrity. I have a nose for integrity, and I was gifted with a great teacher in Isa Gucciardi.
Energetic integrity is even more tricky than just ethics. There are esoteric aspects to this practice, and when I began studying, the container that was created in the Sacred Stream classes was held so strongly. This allowed me to feel myself carried into a river of information I had been avoiding seeing for a great deal of my life, but which felt so familiar I had to laugh. Here is where all my aspects met, where my pieces came together.
To come into integrity with one’s power is to be a full container, complete, holding nothing that does not belong to you and having retrieved what you have lost. I find doing this work captivating, challenging, and freeing. When working with others, I bring myself to full attention, and allow the work to lead. There is a balance between holding yourself as a rigid container and allowing complete presence in awareness.
A shaman is someone who translates messages from the natural world to the community. The Buddha did the same, and his study of the natural world meant sensation, experience, witness. The natural world is without us and within us, and the study of one is to study the other.
In the work of using the Shamanic Journey as a tool for self-knowledge, there is nothing we are shown we cannot handle. The whole society at large offers a million stunning ways to avoid doing this kind of work, but once I began these internal explorations, I came upon so much freedom and light I couldn’t stop. To approach healing by accessing our own knowing, recognizing there is nothing outside ourselves that is necessary for our wholeness, is like finding a flower endlessly blooming inside.