Reconnecting with the elemental nature of Mother Earth.
In ancient traditions, the Earth is known in many different ways. For some it is Mother Earth, for others Gaia. The Earth is seen as more than just a planet that revolves around the sun. She is the Mother that provides sustenance and life for the plants, animals and humans. She is seen as a conscious being rather than something inanimate. Without her, there would be no life.
In her elemental nature, the Earth produces beautiful landscapes, diverse ecosystems, and the intricate balance of all life. She creates the weather systems and she also destroys for the sake of recreating, rebalancing and rebirthing.
In ancient times, Mother Earth was worshipped as the giver of all life. Many cultures created ceremonies to honour Her and to honour the changing of the seasons and the cycles of planting and of harvesting her bounty. This close relationship allowed the people to be sensitive to Mother Earth’s ever-changing rhythms and movements. To be energy sensitive to Mother Earth was essential for survival and was the lifeblood of these cultures.
Today, much has already been written about "Global Warming” and our impact on the Earth and her environments. Unless we humans realign with our Mother Earth, we will continue to see technology as the only way to regain balance. Technology often creates new problems even while it solves others. If we as human beings can regain our natural relationship with Mother Earth and become her stewards, then we will be able to shift our attitudes as well as our actions in a much more natural way. All new inventions and technology would then be accepted only if they were in alignment with the Earth.
From a shamanic viewpoint, the Earth symbolizes the physical body that houses our spirits. Both the Earth and our physical bodies are temples and lodges. They keep all our systems functioning in balance, in the most efficient and effective ways possible.
The elemental earth is stabilizing and grounding. It has the ability to endure. When our energy is centered in our body just below the navel, we experience a feeling of inner stillness. From this place, we can access the inner states of awareness and, over time, we can develop a relationship with the rhythms of Mother Earth. This kind of inner stillness signifies a connection with all the energies that pass through the auric field of the body.
Once we reach a regular state of inner quiet in our own bodies, we can begin to perceive other energies around us. We become energy sensitive and can then hone our ability to accurately interpret the information we receive from the energy exchange. We can do this to the extent we have health, wellness and vitality in our bodies.
The Walk of Silence
Pick a place in nature that you know well and have walked before. If possible, this location should be quiet and unpopulated. Once you have arrived at your location, sit on the ground and drop your energy down to the spot just below your navel. Some days this may take longer than others. Ask Mother Earth to guide your walk and teach you about the inner stillness that speaks volumes. Ask to begin to feel the rhythms of her days and seasons.
Once you feel grounded and settled, begin to walk slowly. Walk in a different way to what you would normally do. Walk as if you were bobbing up and down with an exaggerated bend in your knees. Be upright but relaxed. This kind of walk will allow you to sense the different rhythms within you. Focus your eyes in a relaxed gaze as if you were looking beyond the edge of what you can see or look downwards at a 45-degree angle with totally relaxed eyes.
Walk for about 15 minutes until you feel quiet and grounded. Then sit on the ground and begin to rock in alignment with Mother Earth’s rhythms. Close your eyes as you do this. At first, it might feel forced and contrived but over time it will feel more natural.
Do this ceremonial walk three times a week if possible. Over time, you will experience a greater level of inner quiet. For some people, the Earth energy will be felt immediately and for some it will take time. The benefits for your body including grounding and a reduction of stress. These results can be profound. As you experience growing success with this exercise, see if you can hear Mother Earth’s voice and consciousness.
Gael Carter is the co-founder of the Institute of Shamanic Medicine. The different programs offered blend the ancient healing ways from many different Shamanic Traditions throughout the Americas.