The Death & Rebirth Process Is Not Over

I was being foolish. At least, I forgot an important part of what I had been taught :

The death and rebirth process is very long. Even the death part, for a start, can be. The soul dying from repression, or depression, slows itself down, and shuts itself down, little by little. So that you don’ realise it. It’s excruciating. And once you’ve seen it, there is an even longer road to make.

My shamanic sickness* was of this type. Slow, progressive, extending greatly over the years. My soul was dying. And then, there was the harsh process of realisation, triggered by the Spirits. It was a time bomb, and a cluster bomb too. It exploded in every directions, every areas of my life. My emotions, my relationships, my work, my studies, my path, and my health. It got worse. I was made really sick. It drove me mad at times. I was open enough to get help – professional help that is. But once I started, the obstacles, the road to follow seemed even bigger and farther – and harder – than what had happened before. It was harsh. And the Spirits also tested me during this exhausting step. More and more. Quicker and quicker. Die. Die again ; and again and again. I felt I almost lost my sanity.

It’s been a few weeks since I’ve been feeling a real change. I understood so many things about myself and my path with the Spirits during that most intense year. The shadow work and the work on my psyche – plus the spiritual work – were deep. I’m feeling something new, lighter. It has not only to do with Imbolc ; it is synchronistic though. I’m emerging from my sickness and my death and rebirth’s final step. I’m feeling so much hope… It is new ! No wonder Khepry went back my way. The God of Change, death/rebirth and regeneration. I was feeling small, looking at a wonderful dawn. Khepry. I felt that Imbolc was an irregular tunnel full of bumps, yet helping me shed skins. Looking at the dawning light, I had the impression to be covered by dew. Purified.

But I had forgotten one thing : the death and rebirth process is actually not over. There is one last step to make. When you die, and are reborn, it’s not sufficient to step toward the future. Maybe it’s even impossible at first. You’re stuck. You’re surrounded by shells and waste. If you want to be able to move forward, acknowledging the change is not enough : you have to live it, to stage it.

I was feeling good, purified, but it wasn’t deep enough, not sufficient enough. It is a death, proper. And I had missed a step. I was experiencing a new phase of it : the grieving. I felt something happening but didn’t realise what it was. But that’s it. I was feeling grief – for myself. I have to do it, to feel it, grieve for my old self that died. I am new, but I have to look at what once was and is now dead. Which I have to let go. And to make this step complete, I have to go beyond introspection and contemplation : I have to make myself a ceremony, a funeral. I have to cut off those parts and mourn. And then I’ll purify myself again, to be able to stand in the new dawn.

And then, only then will I be able to make the first step as reborn.

———-

* Let it be noted that a shamanic sickness is supposedly unique (little use to compare) and multifold. Plus, I think it never comes alone. Soul sickness can be a thing of its own, parallel to the shamanic sickness.

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November is the cruellest month…

Note : Reference to T.S.Eliot, The Waste Land : “April is the cruellest month…”

November begins with Samhain for the Celts, Winter Nights in the Ancient Norse Culture. It’s both the closing of one year and the opening of another, marking the transition of the seasons. It inspires me so much things that no article could allow me to clear my mind and write about it.

Last year I was touched by an intense sickness that changed me on all levels – and my life completely too. (In fact it even resulted into two diseases, which doubled the intensity of the process and evolution) I had got hints during this long journey, many many times, but now…. now I am arriving at the end, I can feel it, and it is very weird. Now I know, I’ll never be the same anymore. The Journey was long and multifold. I underwent a deep and numerous series of initiations which also changed me forever, for it brought both experiences and knowledge that can’t be put away and alter one’s comprehension and relation to everything. Despite this blog for example, and my constant efforts at giving hints at my path, I’ve been forced to dive into Silence. Taboo of the spirits, and holy silence, about and around the mysteries. It is impossible to make a final account of all this, it is way too huge, as it was almost too huge for me to experience.

It broke me apart actually. Last year I died – several times. I killed my soul, poisoned my body, and the spirits took the ultimate resources they had to help me once and for all : they used violence and harsh means. They struck me, abandoned me, cut me down and off…. and when they were back, after having put me in the gentle hands of the Morrigan and Dionysos to give me some strength and initiate me further, they broke me down again. They didn’t let me rest until I was down on my knees in front of my bed crying and screaming because I was lost, because the truth hurts. They put it all on me and brought me to the edge letting me no choice : tell yourself you’re crazy and let your soul die, or grow the fuck up and deal with it…. if you don’t want to live oh that’s fine, but don’t lie about it, don’t hide it, choose it properly (don’t poison yourself). But if you want to live, if you have enough self-respect, then accept what we show you and what you are. So yes, I died, several times. But the Spirits also put the pieces back together, several times. They healed me, they sew me back, my body, my limbs… and my soul. They bore me in their belly for a year, and brought me to the world again.

It’s been a little more than a year now, a year and one month or two, since it began. And I just begin to realise, like, really see and integrate how huge it was. Fate put on my path signs to reveal more, the depth of it. Coincidence that it ended with a long trip to the American continent exactly at this aniversary date ? A sort of pilgrimage… To what ? To my soul I think, partly. A kind of parenthesis between the worlds – again. A breach through the healing process. A new phase of silence from the spirits and gods…. to find myself back, to have time for myself, to allow me things… to take time, to observe. One page of my life (or many!) seems to be closing, and yet everything is new. Everything begins. And what more was I needing to realise, when it strangely closes at this pivotal moment of Winter Nights ?

Yeah… I think Spirits love to teach us and insist on some things. It’s just another way to say “yes, it’s all about death, again“. Death is my arriving point. And even if I am just back, I’ll have to resume the work. After such a trial, I’ll have to do the holy celebration and honor the dead, mostly my ancestors. What better way and moment to do this, after such a journey of mine ? Because it is obvious that my ancestors were around me all along the way even when I felt alone… And after having changed so much, I need time for myself and I have to accept it without feeling guilty. I need loneliness, quiet, and a hearth and / or home. And where is my home if not among my Ancestors and in the House of the Dead ? It is so clear now… and this sign is too big. I’ve come Home.

“November is the cruellest month”, because it collects the aniversaries of the death of my closest family members, plus my first beloved cat which was hit long ago by a car. It marked my youth, both these deaths themselves and the fact that they were added to this month magnetically. I’ve always wondered even back then if Fate was trying to tell something. And it did… I just refused it till the first day, the first death. As for now, it is so meaningful and awe-inspiring that this new sacred year coincides with my personal trial year, and starts with a serious aniversary month, which I will then celebrate all the more intensely since my practice is being re-centered around the Dead and Ancestors. It is a pretty significant opening after a year of harsh initiations and for a new year of empowerment to which I engage. It is obvious that I have to plan and involve to find my personal roots and the roots of my spiritual power, as I have begun to do. To continue the work I have been asked, and find who I am. This means a lot of work of course… but actually, for once, I am not scared. No I am rather really glad…. and at peace.

I might do a month of “virtual silence” for the occasion… if I manage ! Or maybe a series of shots around this topic ? I also realise that I have to take back my drafts of a personal holy calendar… (By the way Ryan, you really inspired me with yours !)