I walked on fire....
It's April 15th, I'm at a retreat hosted by Don Miguel Ruiz (author of the 4 Agreements) along with 8 of his Master Teachers at "The Gathering of the Shamans". “The key to firewalking, is to build your energy higher than the fire itself.” HeatherAsh Amara explains, as I’m trying to wrap my head around the fact that this is going to happen.
1,300 degrees burning hot Cedar coals, created by sacred fire keepers, in the middle of the Sedona desert...I shook my head in disbelief...this can’t be happening.... It was a good 10 minute walk in pitch black darkness, 200 souls travelling down a dirt road in silence, meditating on what they want to release to the fire. By the time we got to where the fire was, it was burning a good 10 feet high, lighting up the desert and exposing 2 coal pits on either side of the pit. The pits were approx 6 feet wide and 10 feet long....no escaping once you committed. There was terror in my belly and my body wasn’t just shaking from the cool crisp air. We split up into 100 at each bed of coals, everyone was screaming, hooting and hollering, was similar to being at a sporting event, the energy in the air was crackling! HeatherAsh started drumming and we all chimed in with the heady chant she had taught us, “every step you take, all of life is sacred, every step you take all the earth is sacred.” Over and over we chanted getting louder and louder. I was terrified as I watched people cross the coals, “Holy shit...they actually did it!”. Everything in my body screamed DANGER! I closed my eyes and remembered why I came to the desert....”I am here to transform fear into love, time to commit to your healing”. My body calmed, and I walked to the front of the line, gazing deep into the coals, mesmerized by them dancing as 200 people chanted. I took some deep deep breaths, psyching myself up, tuning into the coals, tuning into my element, sang as loud as I could and when the word “earth” came up in the chant, I placed my left foot on the coals (begged my spiritual care team for protection) and walked. Time stood still...everything went in slow motion...I was chanting as loud as my voice would let me, but it sounded like I was in a tunnel, people were chanting and clapping in slow motion. And in my head I said “holy f*ck this is hot!” Reaching the other side, being enveloped by complete darkness as the fire was behind me now, feeling the cool earth under my feet as they throbbed, the triumphant feat...the glory...nothing short of epic. There really are no words to describe the energy that was in the air and in my soul. My soul sister crossed right behind me, I caught her as she came across in a huge embrace. We cheered, danced, cried and cheered some more as we held space for the rest of the travellers who crossed the red hot coals. Still holding hands, we looked at each other, wordlessly and ceremoniously, 2 powerhouse fire elements (both Leo’s) greeted the coals with a new perspective. Walking to the front of the line, we didn’t hesitate this time, fear transmuted, and embracing our element we sang across the coals together. Nothing but pure magic...My fire sister and I. The ceremony continued in the black of the night under the new moon energy, bringing us into transformation and integration, into Shamanism. The drumming and chanting, the vibration of the earth, crackling of the fire burning brightness into the sky, witnessing our ancestors dancing in the swirling smoke, celebrating with us. My heart continued exploding with pure ecstasy, love and healing. Never in my life have I felt such connection to the earth, to myself, to my fire element, to my Warrior. Initiation complete, today, I am a Shaman. “This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.” Angela McPherson
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