“I know who I am. I know what I am. I know how I serve.
I am here. I am here. I am here.”
~Paul Selig from The Book of Mastery

Shamans, seers and wisdom keepers have always known that the stories we tell ourselves become the realities that we live daily and our ancestors, culture and experiences growing up help shape these stories. I believe that we choose to be born into a family, culture, period of time, in order, to have our specific stories shaped and wounds created, so that we may learn and transform from wounding to empowerment. Through this process we become our own healers, remembering that we are manifestations of the divine and coming to a place of self-love that holds us close in the face of any transgression or hurt to our false personalities. In honour of International Women’s Day being in alignment with the New Moon Solar Eclipse in Pisces and a powerful conjunct with Chiron (the wounded healer) I wish to share with you my story of healing and empowerment.

I was blessed to have spent the first five years of my life in the country raised by parents who tried their best to let me be the free spirit I was born as, a cheerful and joyous little girl who loved to wear dresses and dance, I was just as happy adventuring in the woods that surrounded our acreage, as at a party chatting up my parent’s friends. I was given the freedom to explore and experience my small piece of the world and I remember it fondly. It wasn’t until we moved into the city that my life changed greatly, no longer having my forest friends to explore with and restricted to the confines of a girl in the city my experience of the world grew and contracted at the same time. Through this contraction my own spirit contracted to fit into school and the expectations of my now single mother. Having left my father, I felt a sense of loss pervading my being and I started to believe I was not good enough and that I must prove myself in the world. I began to try and find my place and like many girls and women I chose the route of being nice and pleasing to people, making myself small and unburdensome as somehow I knew at five that the predominant culture suggested I should be. And yet being the 80s and post-women’s liberation, I also had great freedoms and was not forced into womanly tasks. As I excelled at school I began to focus great energy on my mind and learning, trying to prove my worth and value to the world, especially my father. When this did not have the achieved effect as a pre-teen and teenager I began to rebel, using my young and budding body to seek the attentions of men and drugs to mask the ache in my heart. This pattern continued as I transformed from being a quiet, studious, pleasant girl to a rebellious, stoned, sexual teen who found in doing drugs the remembrance of the wildness and self-assertiveness that had existed in the woods of my childhood, and in the attentions of older men some semblance of the affections I had longed for from my father. I learned a great deal in this time exploring a new world and seeing life through another filter.

After several years living this new perspective the remembrance of my wildness reawakened my spirit and I knew from a deep place inside that the patterns I had learned were no longer serving me and not in alignment with all that I could be. My 21st year marked another slow and gradual transformation in my life. I went to university and through studying biology, chemistry, anthropology and psychology I began to become inspired and curious about the magic that is life again. I travelled Europe, Africa, Asia and North America exploring the way others saw the world helped by their own systems of belief. Buddhism, Yoga, Paganism, Wicca, Indigenous beliefs and Shamanism helped to teach me that everything in the universe is a manifestation of the divine and that I could reconnect with my own spirit again without drugs or sex or extreme experiences. Each of these systems helped me to understand better the nature of the game we are playing and by using practices of self-observation, movement, breathing, dance, meditation and song I was able to learn connect with my own divinity and to love myself more and more. With each day now I challenge myself to be more courageous and become more aware of the layers of my false personality, continually pulling down the barriers that have kept me small and finding the power within to transform my story.

This wounding has been the greatest lesson in my life and through working with my story I have been able to recognize that my spirit chose this experience to make me stronger and more powerful and to allow an accepting of myself, coming home to myself more and more each day. It is not easy but it doesn’t have to be hard. This is why we are all here and I believe coming home to spirit is our purpose. I hold in my heart that we are all remembering and returning to our divinity and from this place, we will find peace, harmony and acceptance as a species and we will create relationships and lives that are defined by spirit, living in balance with mother earth and all the other beings we are blessed to share our home with. I am so grateful for this opportunity to be here at this time of great change. May we all be blessed with love, grace, remembrance, joy, laughter, connection, understanding, faith and power.

Credits: Image – “Dancer in the Light” is the beautiful creation by artist Cindy Parsley and can be found at http://www.cindyparsley.com/figurative/

Marika is a Teacher, Shamanic Practitioner, Holistic Doula and Ritual Creatrix. She provides a grounded and heart-mind centred space to facilitate greater connection with spirit, creating acceptance and healing.

She holds a BA in Medical Anthropology from UBC, Certificates in Ayurvedic nutrition, panchakarma and yoga therapy from Santosha Puri Ashram and Chakrapani Ayurveda Clinic and Research Center in India. She is also a certified Holistic Doula Practitioner through Pacific Rim College and a Shamanic Practitioner through The Power Path School of Shamanism. Marika is currently studying to be a Doctor of Chinese Medicine in order to further bring together all she has learned and be able to continue her journey of awareness, sharing the ancient wisdoms of this world and the others.

To see a full description of the services she offers through spirit medicine, birth medicine and Chinese medicine, please visit her website at marikareidhall.com.