Laura, Author at Experiential Online Animism Class - Page 6 of 15
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blind man and the elephant

The Blind Man and the Elephant- an animist story

There is a very famous Indian parable about the blind man and the elephant that can teach us a lot about animism. It goes something like this. Six blind men stood begging on the road-side every day. They had heard many stories about elephants but had never actually seen one. One morning a man drove an elephant right past where they were begging. When he told them about the great beast in front of them, they asked him to stop so that they might feel the elephant with their hands. The man agreed. The first blind man reached out and touched the elephant's side. "Oh!" he said, "An elephant is like a wall." The second reached out and grabbed the elephant's tusk. "Oh, you are wrong," he said. "An elephant is not like a...

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animist revival

The Animist Revival, Duality, and Spiritual Boundaries

I recently discovered that there is an animist revival happening! Lots of people who lost touch with their animist roots are now being drawn to reawaken this part of themselves. Mixed culture people are deepening their knowledge and practice of their animist side. Tribal people are benefiting and recoiling from this explosion. To navigate this in a healthy way, it’s good to look at where we came from. When we do this, we can move forward in a more mindful way.  So let’s review our past. The History of Cultural Destruction Throughout history, conquerors have taken territory, killed people, and changed cultures. We can see the evidence of this in language. In modern times, we see that English speaking areas that weren’t originally English territory were conquered by England. Spanish speaking places were...

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moon drunk

Moon Drunk

flames dance to the steady, rhythmic drum, first red, then gold, then green, as disembodied voices echo through the trees joining the singers in the circle. who’s here? crickets? frogs? dogs? ghosts watching from the darkness? dancers writhe in shadows to Nature’s feral orchestra lost between here and there I am perceiver and perceived. I am the light and shadows. I am moon drunk....

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be wobbly

It’s Okay to Be Wobbly

I’m wobbly. This isn’t the first time that this has happened. Spiritual travel can do this to me. Death, birth, graduation, marriage, divorce, menopause, betrayal, bankruptcy, or disillusionment, can create it. Heck, life can sometimes do it for no particular reason at all. It’s where we go when our world breaks open. The boundaries explode and no longer exist. We free fall. It’s complete and utter freedom. We say we want this, but it feels so uncomfortable. We yearn for the known, for walls to help us feel secure. What worked before doesn’t work now. What we knew before is no longer true. Sometimes it’s because we discover that what we thought was truth is a lie. Sometimes we go wobbly because we gain so much more information that our old ways of...

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How Will You Hear the Whispers?

In Wales I learned to hear the whispers. In the past I have concentrated on going where Spirit roars. These are power places where even the most dense people can feel the swirls of the earth’s chakras attuning their bodies. They are exciting. They provide “proof” that something transformative is happening. Big shifts happen. Lives change. But my last pilgrimage wasn’t like that. The earth didn’t scream at all. It whispered. And I had to lean in to hear it. I thought it was a new experience for me, but I later realized that I had been preparing for it for a while. All the solitary walks in the woods helped me appreciate both the absence of manmade sounds and the chatter of the forest. When I’d look up and see the wide...

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sustainable spiritual travel

Sustainable Spiritual Travel

Nature has a carrying capacity. The western, modern way of dealing with that is to take from the "haves" to give to the "have nots." For example, if one area doesn't have enough water to support the population in, they bring more in. If there are too many wolves in the area for human safety, they shoot them. If tour companies want to grow, they build more hotels and roads. This is not sustainable spiritual travel. If we are to be good stewards of the earth, we can't participate in this. We have to find other ways to feed our inner yearning. Going out isn't working anymore when there are crowds, long lines, destruction of natural habitat and local culture. The price is too high. So, perhaps we need to go...

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leave no trace

Leave No Trace

This weekend I finally traveled to a place that has been on my bucket list for a long time. People talk about how beautiful it is. They rave about the wonderful energy. They even say there is a vortex there. It’s one of the lands of my ancestors too, so I can’t tell you how thrilled I was to be there. Unfortunately, the other visitors had apparently never heard of the rule of “leave no trace.” Leave No Trace is a Native American example of living in harmony with Nature. It’s a practice that assures that we don’t take more than is sustainable. By leaving things as we find them, we assure that our resources, beauty, and life is there for others to enjoy for generations. These guidelines apply to anyone...

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Machu Picchu

A Gift From Machu Picchu

Sacred travel isn't just about seeing spiritual places. Sometimes it is just about being in communion with nature and allowing the high vibrational energy to work its magic. That's what happened for me at Machu Picchu. I'd been to Machu Picchu before. It's stunning. When the clouds parted to reveal the picturesque ruins, it took my breath away. I couldn't stop looking at the view! The sun rays looked like they were blessing the earth. Absolutely mesmerizing. ...

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pow wow

Spiritual Tourism Has Invaded the Pow Wow

I should have known it was just a matter of time. It's here. Spiritual tourism has invaded the pow wow. There appears to be nowhere to hide from the spiritual hunger of the mainstream world. No one is immune to the almighty dollar. I went to a pow wow this weekend. It's one I haven't been to in a while so I wasn't prepared for the radical shift in energy and focus. Pow wows are a modern invention that have only been around for about a hundred years. They started as cultural gatherings for the tribe to meet, dance, sing, celebrate, and share stories. As time went on, tribes blended their celebrations with other tribes, opened them up to the public as fundraising events, sponsored contests that offered prizes, and functioned...

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walking in the rain

Walking in the Rain

The first time I went walking in the rain was in Italy. I had only nine precious days. There was no way I was going to waste one of them sitting inside when everything I wanted to see was outside. I wasn’t going to let a little rain stop me. Only it wasn’t a little rain. It was a day long deluge. Still, I was determined to enjoy the ruins -rain or no rain. The thing that I learned that day was, “So what.” So what that it’s raining. What does rain have to do with it. Life goes on. The next time I chose to go walking in the rain was in England. Now, England is always rainy so it makes no sense at all to think that I could only...

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