From the journal of the voyage of Captain Cook, a collection of engravings, courtesy of Jonathan Cohen, Photo by David Garten. As found in: ‘Voices of the First Day’ by Robert Lawlor (P. 73).
Again, notice that the physical features are characteristic of many, if not all, other races. Could they have been the first humans living when the earth was just one land mass referred to as ‘Pangaea’ prior to it breaking up in the continental drift?
Welcome everyone to ‘Earth People’ Magazine.
As times are changing, and things are quickening up, so too the ‘Earth People’ Magazine has gone through some changes. Remember that all things of life can change very fast, and this publication has a life of it’s own, so it too can change, grow, or die, like any living thing. Yes I gave birth to it, but it has a soul of it’s own now and I can only do what I can do to save any life, but if that life must die then it must die. And this publication can die if it is not fed good healthy food, (other life). For as Joseph Campbell has said: “The essence of life is the eating of itself.” Thanks to some alive beings, ‘Earth People’ lives on at the moment.
Notice that there are no more ‘Coming Events’ in this issue, however Full Moon Sweats are still on, and I am always available 24 hrs for more Sweats, as well as all the usual sacred stuff. And if you don’t know the Full Moon dates then YOU SHOULD! or you can ring or write to me, and ask me anything you like – as there is no such thing as a silly question.
Remember that I am always looking for more people to share their trials and revelations of life’s experiences, no matter how mundane, undivine, or crazy they may seem. We are all sharing this universe together and having pretty much the same human experiences. So sharing may help some others who are out there seeking answers to their life’s questions.
Now just sit back, live life, and HANG LOOSE with this issue of ‘Earth People’.
(Written for Deakin: Assign.2 for ASR-103, ‘Religious Studies’.)
To discuss sacred space, places and things we must first look at the meaning of sacred as compared to profane. Emile Durkheim (1965: 83) sees all religious phenomena as always having a "bipartite division of the universe." He says that:
“Since the idea of the sacred is always and everywhere separated from the idea of the profane in the thought of men, and since we picture a sort of logical chasm between the two, the mind irresistibly refuses to allow the two corresponding things to be confounded... the two classes cannot even approach each and keep their own nature at the same time.”
(Durkheim: 1965, p.83)
This bipartite division of life between the sacred and the profane is often referred to as the 'Duality of Life'. Joseph Campbell, in his video 'The Power of Myth' (1988), explains that the themes that permeate all of life will always have pairs of opposites. It is Man's individual choice between these pairs of opposites that orchestrate life's dance and evolution.
“When one moves out of the transcendent, one comes into a field of opposites... Male and Female, Good and Evil, Being and Non-Being, Is and Isn't... we must put our mind in the middle.”
(Joseph Campbell: 1988)
The effects of this choice between these pairs of opposites mean that totally different myths and ways of living are created depending on whether we see nature as corrupt, profane and chaotic or as divine and sacred. I believe that the ancient cultures saw all of nature as sacred, where as in today's modern culture we choose to see nature as corrupt and therefore we try to control and have power over nature. This however again shows the duality of ancient verses modern, another pair of opposites.
Mircea Eliade (1959: 11) explains that all space is profane until it is made sacred. Saying that Religious Man, or as I prefer 'Spiritually Aware Man', "finds expression in the experience of an opposition between space that is sacred - the only real and real-ly existing space - and all other space, the formless expanse surrounding it." This 'founding of the world' or finding sacredness in the world is a "primary religious experience that precedes all reflection on the world." To look at the spiritually unaware man's idea of sacred and profane, you could almost say that everything is profane until it is possessed or owned by him, and then it is sacred to him. Every culture has it's own way of making space and land sacred.
The next question that needs to be answered is how does man make space and things sacred? According to Eliade (1959: 12,18), to obtain any orientation, man needs a fixed point (a Sacred Centre, an Axis Mundi), which comes from a spiritual revelation. This revelation comes because the centre is where there is a break in the planes of conscious man, either upwards to the Gods (Heaven) or downward to the Underworld (Earth, the unconscious, the dead, or hell). Because the Axis Mundi, or Universal Pillar is a sacred centre - opening up communication with the three cosmic levels (Heaven, Man and Earth or the Underworld) - "the world comes into existence." It is from around this sacred centre that the sacred world is made. In the Vedic Ritual, the erection of a fire altar to Agni is a reproduction of the creation, and thus communication with the Gods is made possible. This making of sacred space means that any future building and living activity around this sacred place also becomes sacred. Therefore according to Eliade (1959: 16) every act of organisation being made out of chaos is a sacred act. There are many other examples of religious myths and legends that describe how through repeating the acts of the Gods, the world is made sacred.
As different cultural groups make their world sacred via different revelations and realisations, then different myths, dreams, religions and symbols are formed. Joseph Campbell (1988) says that: "Myths and dreams come from the realisations that have to find expression in symbolic form." And I feel that although the realisations change from place to place and from time to time, there are some symbols that are common to all cultures, religions and times. This is because according to Campbell, "The human psyche is the same all over the world. It is the inward aspect of the human body, which is essentially the same, with the same organs, instincts, impulse systems, conflicts and fears."
Durkheim (1965: 80) says that: "Religious representations are collective representations which express collective realities." Carl Jung refers to these common symbols throughout humanity as 'Archetypes of the Collective Unconscious'. The most powerful of these common ideas is the idea of a higher power or God, and the most common religious symbol is the circle, in which the centre represents the 'Axis Mundi' and the circumference represents the world around it. Campbell explains what he calls 'The Wheel of Fortune', which can also represent any emotion or part of being alive. He says that: "If you are attached to the wheel (circumference), you will be either above (well off), going down, at the bottom (poor), or coming up. But if you are at the hub, you are in the same place all the time." Meaning that you can watch your finances, emotions, or any aspect of living go around and around, up and down, without the outward circumstance having any effect on your psyche.
This brings me back to the religious and cosmic centre of the self, which when the mind, body and soul are all centred in an harmonious unity, then communication with the Gods is made by joining Heaven and Earth. Therefore Heaven (often referred to as the All Father or Upper World) and Earth (the All Mother or Lower World) are consciously and spiritually united in the self, allowing one to experience their roots, their source of being, and thereby creating a sacred place within oneself, an Axis Mundi, a centre of the Universe, a Sacred Centre.
Joseph Campbell (1988) refers to this sacred place as a 'Bliss Station' for creative incubation. He says: "It gives you a thou feeling of life." On a psychological side Campbell says that:
“The realisation of your bliss, your true being, comes when you have put aside (Sacrificed or Resisted) the passing moment with it's terror (Fears), temptations (Desires), and requirements of life that you should live this way (Social Duty).”
In other words when you are centred or balanced psychologically and spiritually you are living according to God and nature. There is also the indication that a person's 'true being' is a sacred centre within the human body, mind and spirit or soul. Therefore to find sacredness in many religions requires an inward journey to the sacred place within. A perfect example of this inward journey can be seen in Buddhism, Yoga, Meditation and altered states of consciousness. When this inward place can be reached, it will guide the diligent Buddhist to Nirvana, which is the salvation from the attachment to and the lust for: power, success, money, sex, comfort and other temporary and bodily pleasures, which cause all the ills of life.
So if sacred space and sacred objects come from realisations of a person's 'True Being', then it stands to reason that different people will consider different places and different things as sacred. The ancient 'primitive' religions have the principle animal or nature's main source of food as sacred objects. This can be seen from the cave paintings which act as myths to indicate that the life source of the animal, like humans', comes from the Transcendent, Great Spirit, or God, and appeasement or thanks must be given to the animal that is giving it's life so that human life may continue. Campbell says that the guilt of killing and taking life is wiped out by the myth. For Islamic Muslims there is only one external sacred place, and that is Mecca. And the one major sacred object is the Koran, which is Islam's book of how you should live your life according to God, the creator and judge.
For Christians, the Bible is the source of all sacred places, objects and knowledge.
Because the bible often uses metaphors and symbols to help the faithful understand the messages that can guide them to the sacred space within, which then opens them up to communication with God, I consider these messages to be myths. These myths are reminders of the realisations and revelations that have been had by religious leaders of the time. These myths or stories mention all the sacred; symbols, places, objects and messages that call men and women to a deeper awareness of the acts of life from birth to death.
Dreams come from personal realisations and revelations in symbolic and sometimes cryptic form to give deeper awareness of the personal acts of life.
In concluding, it is man's awareness of the pairs of opposites and his centring of himself spiritually and psychologically that brings him the revelations that turn any profane and chaotic world into a sacred world. This means that for the truly spiritually aware man all space, place, and things in this natural world are sacred.
Emile Durkheim – ‘The Elementary Forms Of Religious Life'. (1965)
Joseph Campbell – ‘The Power Of Myth'. (1988: video)
Mircea Eliade – 'Sacred Space And Making The World Sacred'. (1959)
You can never teach a warrior with words about the unknown; you must use experience. But if you look into the eyes of a woman of power, you may catch up with her a little. She has years of truth ahead of you. Her eyes can quicken you like a river heading toward the rapids. Open yourself with love, not understanding. You cannot love with your mind. Listen from your heart. If a camel is walking down a path and another camel passes him, the first camel will go faster to keep up. This is how power works. Don’t learn everything with your mind. Quicken your spirit by letting go of attachments and move to a stronger vibration of power.
The universe can be represented by the mountains and the sphere represents the universality of power. To find power and enlightenment, you must quicken your vibration to a higher level by letting go of negative thought patterns.
Notes in italics and square brackets by:
We welcome you to the opportunity to participate and pray in the traditional way of the Lakota people. The “Inipi” ceremony is a very sacred ceremony, and we ask that you observe some basic etiquette when participating [If you follow guidance from Spirit you can’t go wrong]. The Inipi is the way we pray to Grandfather (Tunkashilla) [and or Great Spirit (Wakan – Tanka), God, Creator etc.] The Lodge represents Mother Earth, [so we crawl in on hands and knees to humble ourselves as pitiful human beings praying for the benefit of All Our Relations (Mitakuye Oyasin)] and when we crawl out at the end of the ceremony it is like a rebirth [Cleansed in Body, Mind, Heart (body and spirit), and Soul]. We leave all our problems in there with the Grandfather Stone [For Great Spirit, Grandfather, and the wise beings to deal with, for the good of all].
No woman should come to the lodge when they are on their “Sacred Monthly Time”. That is a ceremony in itself, and according to the Elders, we cannot be in two ceremonies at the same time.
If you have not attended a traditional Lakota lodge, please be open to learn and ask questions. Do not assume you know. We want to always be respectful.
When women come to the lodge they should not wear slacks or jeans [don’t ask me why]. They should come in a skirt or dress that is at least below the knees. When in the lodge, women should wear a dress or skirt and shirt that covers some of the arm and is long [I recommend a wrap like a sari]. Bring different clothes to wear in the lodge than the ones you arrive in. No sleeveless, tank tops or bathing suites. We must respect ourselves. Bring a towel in the lodge [however, it will simply get saturated]. Wear no makeup or metal jewellery of any kind.
In the lodge, men should wear swim trunks or shorts with no metal on them. [These are the rules in my lodge, unless ALL participants are 100% comfortable and willing to be reborn in the same state as in their first birth, naked. Under these conditions, which I keep a strict eye on, I believe it is not disrespectful, but how it should be. The reaso for no metal is because it has a tendency to get very hot and might burn the skin]
When you arrive, be sure to shake hands with people and introduce yourself [We are all brothers and sisters and I feel a hug that brings two hearts together in respect and compassion for one another is better].
Be aware that there will be many sacred items sitting on the altar in front of the lodge.
Do not throw anything in the sacred fire. It is not a bonfire. [Tobacco and corn meal offerings with prayers are recommended. These I can supply].
Bring tobacco to put on the alter before going into the lodge. [See above].
Women usually go into the lodge first. Be sure to listen to the one pouring [running] the lodge for any special instructions.
The firemen [fire-keeper] will Smudge [Smoke] you with sacred sage or cedar [just before you enter the lodge].
First the Medicine Man [Pipe carrier] will load his [or her] “Channunpa” (Sacred Pipe) with tobacco [Special pipe mix] while a song is sung.
Allow the Lakota women and elder women to go in first unless you have been instructed otherwise.
Turn in a clockwise circle at the door [not necessary (sun-wise if at all)], then crawl in and say “Mitakuya Oyasin” or “All my relations” as you enter the opening. We crawl in to humble ourselves and then remind ourselves that we are all related.
Crawl in a clockwise manner [I go anti-clockwise in the Southern Hemisphere] sitting next to the person ahead of you. Be silent. When the first seven stones come in there should be no talking. We must pray to the directions at this time.
Sometimes there are separate men’s and women’s lodges.
After the seven (7) stones come in the men will begin coming in [I like everyone in before the stone people].
When all the stones are in, the ceremony begins.
The door will open and close four (4) times.
Sacred songs will be sung when the door is closed.
Pray when the door is closed while looking at the Grandfather Stone People.
Do not attempt to leave the lodge while the door is closed. [If you really NEED fresh air or to leave say “Mitakuya Oyasin”, but remember that this will interfere with the 4 door openings and closings].
Do not pull up the sides while the door is closed.
Do not pull up the sides unless the one pouring the water gives you permission.
It is good to drink plenty of water the day of a lodge (especially in Colorado where the elevation is high and it is very dry).
Be sure not to over eat before a lodge. You may become nauseous. [I recommend fasting for at least 4 hours before a lodge].
Be sure to ask questions if you are not sure what to do.
After the 4th round (door) we will go out and get dry clothes on and come back and form a circle and smoke the “Channunpa” and eat the spirit food. [This would also signify the end of the ceremony. Sometimes the pipe may be smoked at the beginning of the first round, during the third round, or at the beginning of each round. After this it is important to eat and ground yourself, which why I then have a feast and debriefing session at the end.].
It is sometimes built with 12 saplings. Each sapling, which is bent in an upward curve, but is a straight line on the diagram, has the following representations.
The door is usually in the east (where all things begin and where illumination comes from) however sometimes it may be in the west. There should always be a square in the centre above the stone pit.
Also see my article:
‘Circles Cycles, Spirals and Spheres’
(Volume 1 Number 4 of ‘Earth People’)
PLANET & CORRESPONDENT, CONTRARY, or BALANCER
|Mercury||Anu’ngite’||(Double faced Woman)|
|Neptune||Ksa||(Goddess of Water)|
|Pluto||Tob Tob||(Four Directions Wind)|
4 Birds: Eagle, Swan, Hawk, and Woodpecker.
4 Skins: Buffalo, Deer, Mole, and Badger.
4 Plants: Smart weed, Liquorice, Snakeroot, Prairie Dog plant.
4 Rocks: Red, Black, Yellow, and White.
Young: Obedience, Respect, Honour, and Listening.
Women: Bravery, Generosity, Truth, and Life.
Men: Bravery, Generosity, Endurance, and Wisdom
Old: Wisdom, Dreams, Foresight, and Love. (Especially Women)
We sipped tea silently for several minutes. Intermittently, Devi would look at me and smile.
“There are people who will try to hurt you. They come to you looking like flowers, smelling sweet. Never pick those flowers,” Devi finally said.
“But how will I know?”
“These people want to use your power, your energy. They are looking for a line into you. You are very tight, but they look for a hint of fear, of weakness, and that’s where they enter,” she said, studying an area five or six inches away from my head.
“They might say, ‘Be careful in the world, there are people who will try to hurt you.’”
I stared at her, feeling a sudden flash of fear.
“But you just said that.”
“Yes, I did. Maybe I’m trying to kill you.”
Were those claws I suspected going to finally appear, I wondered.
“Evil sorcerers want to have fun. They get bored. They find someone with light and power and they start applying pressure. Then you’re in what they call a sorcerer’s patch. They push your energy field until they find a weak spot and they pick up a line, one of your luminous fibres. They start pulling on it and then they find a way in. Eventually.”
The idea of a sacred book is very common, as it supposedly contains the words of God as given to a prophet in a revelation.
“You are fascinating me and I feel a power in what you say. There’s truth to it. But there are different kinds of truth, aren’t there?”
“Yes. There are truths you get lost in and truths that make you whole. Stick to the latter.”
“So there are really sorcerers of darkness?” I asked.
“Oh, yes, but they must use your energy to function,” Devi said, adjusting her large frame on the small cushion.
“I don’t understand why they have to use my energy – you mean someone’s energy?”
“Yes, a victim. Darkness in this context is only light that has not realised itself. Darkness is born from fear and greed. When you meet a black sorcerer, you meet an extraordinary ego, perhaps well disguised, but nevertheless an ego. That ego has become distorted because of some need, some fear that is so powerful that it produces a kind of greed that turns in on itself. It has a big mouth and destroys its own energy. It eats it and then needs others to fuel its battery. The patriarch, the male-oriented systems have had their chance. They really had a chance and they know they have blown it. A lot of difficult energy you experience now is a death dance." Devi snaked her lovely arms and fingers through the air in a serpentine movement. "The current imbalance on earth has a form and that form wants to survive like anything else. It is afraid of death. So now that energy is taking up a very bizarre strategy to try to win. But, nevertheless, the age of a sacred androgyny is preparing for birth.”
“How do you see that happening?” I had forgotten my fear of this woman. Her words and way of speaking mesmerised me.
“Women as well as men are becoming the power holders in society. We are reinstating feminine consciousness. But this is a time to be extremely careful. Never think that power and freedom will be handed to you on a silver platter.” Devi, with a sudden movement, was on her feet, swaying back and forth like a reed caught in the wind. Then she sank down next to me and blew a sound in my ear that resembled a northern windstorm. “Listen,” she said, “the four winds are your allies. You ride the winds of time. You sweep through the centuries of your lives in the blink of an eye. We have all time and we have no time. Look at the t’anka across the room.” She continued to sway gently and manoeuvre her arms in sylphlike motions. Her fingers appeared to be playing with the air currents from the open window.
As I stared at the image of the White Tara, Devi jumped in front of me and to one side. She moved so deftly, she did not make a sound. Then she stood like a statue staring into my eyes. Again her eye colour seemed to shade into yellow. Carefully she moved her fingers in the air. Her movements were beautiful and purposeful.
“Look at the Tara and tell me what you see.”
I stared at the Tara and began to blink as the image began to float up and out from the wall. Then it began to ripple as if it were made of water. Slowly it began to recede until only a pinpoint of light was visible. There was a tugging sensation in my mid-section and behind my eyes. Then there was a blast of light that encompassed the room and I found myself lying on my back on the floor. Devi was gone and so was the t’anka. I sat up, holding the cushion to my belly, trying to keep from screaming. Moments later the door opened and Devi entered and stood before me.
“Stand,” she said.
I wavered to my feet. Again Devi moved her arms in front of me in motions similar to T’ai Chi. I felt more tugging and then a general release of pressure. A smile returned to Devi’s face and the intensity in the room dissipated. Devi sat down across from me and waited for me to speak.
“What just happened here?” I asked.
“I tricked you. I entered your energy field through your fear line. I literally grabbed it. I made you see what I wanted you to see. Because of your fear of me you gave away your power. I could use it in any way I wanted. That is what a sorcerer does. You think it’s all mysterious, but it’s nothing more than vicious manipulation. A sorcerer is a master of manipulation.”
“But that was very powerful,” I said.
“Yes, manipulating someone takes big smarts. And when sorcerers get results it builds their egos. But it makes enlightenment almost impossible for them.”
“Why is that?”
“Because they mess with someone else’s karmic field. That’s not good.”
“It’s not good to indulge in fear, is it?”
“No, my daughter, it is not good. Fear leaves you as wide open as that field you walked through to get here.”
This is Sitting Owl's Dad showing how to 'Hang Loose'
in a Victorian Rally Championship event.
I would like to give readers another example of the connectedness of all things. I say another because for those who may not remember Volume 1 Number 4, where I wrote an article about 'Money and the Economic System’. In it I mentioned how my experience and understanding of basic accounting has given me the insight to know that the only solution to the social problems of today, is to go back to the beginning of man’s consciousness, which was with the first shamans. And that is where we must turn our ears and eyes, to hear, see, listen and learn about the truth of the entire reality of both pairs of opposites, at all levels of existence, and to create a harmonious future for All Our Relations, and therefore also for the Self.
Here, I would like to show, through another one of my past experiences, that an experience of oneness is not limited to meditation and spiritual practices, although there is a difference in the character of the two experiences.
I began my car rallying experience as a child passenger, strapped into a special seat and harness that my father had made by some clever improvisations. In that experience, I found that no matter how exciting an experience is, it is possible to become tired and fall asleep in the middle.
Later I tried navigating for my father, and found that no matter how strong your constitution and stomach, the conditions of concentrating on maps, and the rough movement of the car, can cause anyone to empty their stomach out the window and decorate the side of the car. Nervousness of course can add to this phenomenon.
Then I began my driving experience when dad offered me the use of his rally car to enter rallies that didn’t clash with the ones he was entering. And later I built and entered my own car, sometimes competing in the same rallies as my father.
1. When one allows time to gradually raise one’s adrenalins, one has much more control.
2. As a result of this control and concentration, one may experience a type of tunnel vision, where the subconscious or body conscious is simply going through the motions fluidly, to fulfil the decisions made by the conscious mind a split second earlier. This is what Joseph Campbell calls the centre of stillness out of which all action must come. I had an experience once, where my conscious mind temporally came back from the tunnel and thought we were not going to make the bend. I thought that at least there were not too many big trees on the outside of the bend to hit. Then I temporally became unconscious, waking up to find that my higher conscious and body conscious had executed the bend perfectly.
3. Success and all best performances always come half way between trying too hard and not trying hard enough.
4 In rallying, as with life, it is important to have your vehicle (body, including the brain and other organs, directing consciousness of the body or vehicle) hanging loose, flexible, fluid, and able to change direction with a quick jerk of the steering wheel, a heavier foot on the accelerator, or a tap on the brake. In rallying there is a technique called ‘The Fin Flick’ (Invented or perfected by the Finish rally drivers), which deliberately unstablizes the car prior to a corner. But in spiritual terms it is ‘The Shaman’s Way’ (see Shaman Principle PONO – Effectiveness is the measure of truth, flexibility and wisdom, there is always another way of doing anything, shamanic healing, etc.).
My own successes in rallying really came as a result of absolute teamwork between myself as the driver, my navigator, and the car. If any one of these did not work properly or made a mistake, there was no hope for any success. Of course, I was the mechanic as well as the driver, so I can take two thirds of the credit. But I must say that I don’t remember any time that my navigator let us down, so I can only blame myself for any rallies in which we either didn’t finish, or went poorly.
In equating this to spirituality I can only say that we must all work together, sharing our experiences and knowledge as a team, a family, and a humanity, for the sake of All Our Relations, because if one fails or falls down, we all fail and fall down.
Here is a link to a YouTube of Ken Block giving an excellent example of Hanging Loose in San Francisco:
The flower of your being begins to bloom when you move with the flow of life. This is a process of letting go, of moving your consciousness out of your mind and into your body-mind, which is an inch or two below your navel. Feel your receptivity as you become still. Watch the river flow as if you were a mountain high above. Be serene, at ease, and totally within your power. Then let the waterfall of life work for you, as you become like a twig carried on the surface of the rushing water. Become one with the river, dissolving the sense of mind and loving totally in your instinctual nature. Let go, and relax into the eternal flow.
Follow the river flow. As in life, it is easy to float downstream with the driftwood but very strenuous to paddle upstream against the current. Flow teaches you about your physical self, about letting go physically as well as mentally. To go into the flow of energy in the universe, move into the instinctual side of your nature. The universe of stars and planets at the bottom of the waterfall indicates the universe of your inner self, of the highest part of your inner being. It is through this life on earth, represented by the mountain and the waterfall, that you can move into the eternity of enlightenment and sacred flow.
Life and Energy Counselling.
Dream and Vision Interpretations.
Shaman Stone and Medicine Card Readings.
Stone-people (Sweat) Lodges.
Chakras and Auras.
Healing the Healer.
Understanding Vibration, Manifestation and Quantum Physics.
All manner of spiritual cleansing, making sacred space, and sacred ceremonies.