It has become pretty clear that I need some help, and I don't mean help with the shaman thing.
I've spent the last few decades labeling myself a solitary pagan and witch. Bully for me. In all of that time, despite starting a few esoteric books, I've found that I'm really not giving my spiritual health very much energy. Of all of the beginners' exercises that are typically recommended, I rarely do any of them. I am prone to starting something and then losing interest and motivation before it's finished, including books, exercises, classes, and projects. This is a real problem.
Lately I've allied myself with a couple of online witch "schools." They are providing a structure to people who want to study the esoteric arts. I think that's just what I need -- structure. I'm willing to start at whatever these schools claim to be the beginning. I want no claims of previous study to place me out of any classes. I want to do the entire program from start to finish. That word "finish" is such a daunting one to my mind. It comes with so much pressure that it need not come. I give it that power and I just need to chill out.
And so I'm going to change the nature of this blog. Instead of being just about shamanism, it is going to be about my whole Wiccan school journey. All of the book reviews, insights, lessons and work that pops into my head will go here. My hope is that it will help me to record where I started and how far I'm developing.
One of the first exercises that nearly every witch is asked to do is just to meditate. Meditation helps the mind to learn focus, opens the intuitive energies of the mind and prepares one to be magical. I was worried that I wouldn't be any good at it, or that I wouldn't be patient enough to do it. Recently, I was able to find some very short meditations for each of the chakras. Each one is around 5 minutes or less and provides the appropriate tones from crystal singing bowls for balancing each chakra. So I figure I will play one of the seven meditations -- one on each day of the week -- and just deal with one chakra for five minutes. At the end of a week, I will have done my meditations and helped to balance my chakras. I hope this does the trick.
If I'm going to start my pagan training at the very beginning, then I'm a "first degree" again, and that means I have a first degree challenge. My challenge is to learn to finish what I start. When I have done my year and a day as a first degree, I will feel more accomplished and validated as a witch, and my justification will be real, not just something I tell myself. As a solitary, it's very easy to create your own justifications because you don't have to answer to anyone or any standard.
I will do the shamanic work, but not until I'm better at meditating. I think quieting my mind will help me to slip into whatever altered state I may need, whether that be for shamanism, for astral projections, for simple magic working, or whatever becomes my forte as a witch. I also expect that my forte will change.