Our individual and collective self is not merely a body mind, but the eternal spirit that miraculously expresses itself here in the world. Spirit communicates this immediate and intimate truth in a moment of stillness, as we consciously accept the now just as it is. Even after such a glimpse of this deeper truth, we can continue to lead lives as beings separate from everything and everyone else in the world. Such a dualistic life, however, is full of a sense of lack, anxiety, and conflict. In response to such suffering, spirit sends healing support, while actively communicating with us about the true unified nature of reality. Spirit transmits such truths through spirit guides that appear both in and without form. They are here to assist us in removing self-imposed boundaries between our conceptual idea of self and our transcendental existence. As part of the shamanic cosmology, reality consists of two parts of one whole. Ordinary reality is the world of form, and non-ordinary reality is the intermediary realm flowing between the physical domain and infinity. Guided by spirit, preternatural creativity appears spontaneously as an invitation to embrace a primordial contentment independent of life’s ever changing content. In that way, we evolve into willing servants to our true and lasting nature.
My knowing about the nature of spirit guides is driven by my own direct firsthand experiences working with the exchange of energy between the world of form and its source essence. The interplay of sound and light vibration is how spirit primarily perceives itself in both ordinary and non-ordinary reality. The transmission of divine wisdom is without ownership and always points to who we already are. That perpetual broadcast of innate knowing and creative insight does not refer to a discrete knower, but is open for all to rediscover. Fortunately, it just takes one moment of stillness for the aperture of awareness to open, and the mutual interdependence between all expressions of spirit to become self-evident. Spirit guides assist us in unconditionally falling in love with where we are, and to stop waiting for objects, people, and experiences to make us happy. Primarily, they transmit the truth about our connection with the divine via both sound and light vibration. A shamanic drum beaten at approximately four beats per second is highly effective in stimulating brain wave activity in the lower theta range, where the deep dreamless sleep of delta brainwave activity moves into an awake but relaxed and aware creativity. Spirit guides are attentive to that particular sound vibration. Their message is that we are beloved children of the universe, and perfect expressions of life’s unified existence.
I was fortunate that my paternal grandfather, who grew up on the Penobscot Indian Reservation, was familiar with the universal harmony underlying all that appears in the world. When I was a very young boy I was draw to the sights and smells of the plants and flowers that grew in our family gardens. I was particularly fascinated with how they seemed to shimmer and glow. One afternoon apropos of nothing, I was keenly aware that the whole world, including my physical body, was a part of the same luminous substance that was glowing and vibrating everywhere, including the spirits of nature that appear in the world.Over the years, it has become obvious that spirit delights in perceiving itself out of itself, in every moment, without an individual self to whom it refers. Scientists are now discovering what shamans have known for eons. Plants and plant spirits communicate their wisdom or “medicine” not only biochemically, but through sound oscillations and light vibrations. When our attention is rooted in spirit there is no distinction between its various expressions in the material world. It is the same spirit that animates the entire ecosystem of the planet. To truly appreciate that all nature is one nature we must commit to cast aside the habituated patterns of ordinary perception that refer to a personal self. Spirit appears here in the world to both heal our wounds of separation and to facilitate an opening to our divine perfection. A simple example of that knowing was self-evident while I was recently cutting and collecting wood for kindling in the woods adjacent to my home. A few of my fingers were bruised to the bone during the endeavor, and started to throb with pain. Immediately, I focused loving attention on the pain, rather than berating myself for the accident. I noticed that the fingers were pulsing in harmony with a peaceful rhythm of the woods. It was a sublime biochemical exchange of energy, in concert with a subtle fluctuation of both sound and light energy. I was keenly aware that all the plants and trees in the woods were not only transmitting healing energy, but were communicating with each other in a profoundly healing and loving way.
A wonderful example of two beings openly acknowledging and communicating with each other as spirits of nature occurred several years ago while I was on pilgrimage. I was sitting on a boulder in the middle of a stream loudly shaking a shamanic rattle honoring the importance of fresh water in our lives. Quite unexpectedly, a doe walked out of the forest, waded into the stream, and gently sat down on the boulder beside me. Initially, it was a struggle to maintain my composure, but at some point our eyes locked, and there was a simple exchange or knowing that the same life force animated both of our forms. I knew without a doubt that in effect I was looking at myself in another form. I continued to rattle and did my best to remain calm in the midst of what appeared to be a tear in the fabric of reality.I mention this particular event in my life because, for me, it brought to light that a perfect moment is one that is both shared and celebrated. My fellow creature of nature, the deer, was very still and deeply rooted in the now, and it was clear that she was seeking nothing from the encounter. We sat together as one. My deer friend and I were lovingly supported by the presence of the moment as one energy packaged in different forms. With my eyes wide open I could see that everything in the immediate environment, including my physical form was flowing as waves of energy, together and in harmony. The experience with the doe was profoundly intimate, and yet remarkably impersonal. We hung out together for a while, and then she gracefully stood up and waded through the stream and back into the forest. As I got up to leave, I was not at all surprised that a lingering pain in my knee was absent. The thought of how to sustain the feeling of unity with all of nature was what distracted attention away from the present moment. Because of the residual habit of relating experiences to an objective sense of self, the open and conscious space that was everywhere was normalized to once again refer to a discrete “me.” I pondered what had transpired, and it was obvious that I still held onto the idea that “I” had somehow done something to both deepen and subsequently lose my connection with spirit. The fixation with being a separate entity is too full of self-importance to humble itself and simply flow with the seamless unity that is everywhere. All seemingly distinctive forms that appear in the world are eventually seen to flow together into oneness. Spirit appears to guide us home to a place that we can never actually abandon.
Phenomena such as mind activity is attracted to complexity, so it overlooks the obvious and simple suchness of spirit. It is our fixation on mind’s interpretation of the nature of spirit and spirit guides that keeps it us from experiencing the majesty of life as it is. All people, birds, animals, plants, rocks, trees, elements, and all other forms that appear in life are witnessed by our vast background presence as one nature. To treat any one part of the natural environment poorly is to treat all of nature with disrespect. A sure sign that we are in harmony with the essential nature of life is the existence of an ease and lightlessness of being. Love is the feel of the elegant and tension free flow of life without an agenda or purpose. Essentially, spirit is both the substance and the form of each and every moment. To openly and knowingly abide in and as spirit is inevitable. The challenge for all of us is to stop, open our eyes, and clearly see what spirit guides have been sharing with all of us since the dawn of time.