Enemies Challenge and New Challenge for CPS

Wikimedia by Kborland

Since I finished the enemies challenge for Collective Prayer Sundays shortly before I left town I’m slow writing a post about it.  It gave me some time to think about it.  The challenge for me came out differently than in the past and I’ve never quite decided whether I felt it succeeded or not.

In the lead-up to the beginning of the Iraq War I got tired of the bombastic e-mails and messages from “peace” groups and decided to chant the lovingkindness chant on my own for President Bush, Osama bin Laden, world leaders.  Mostly I chanted for Bush  I chanted half an hour every day for a couple of weeks.  When I started I despised President Bush.

During the course of the chanting my heart softened and I felt the Divine heart of the Prez.  It wasn’t that I suddenly became a Republican or agreed with his positions on… anything.  But I could love the Divine being while not agreeing with what he said and did.  Many times when I led a group in the chant I watched the same impact occur for others.

I chose my late aunt to chant for because I realize every now and then that the forgiveness I felt at her deathbed didn’t stick (see earlier post).   She had no children and I was an only so our relationship was a bit more complex than the average aunt/niece one.  I adored her when I was little but her nasty tongue and mean drunk episodes turned me off by the time I was 11 or so and our relationship was often adversarial after that.  Anyway, I wanted to put the remaining bitterness to rest.

The first two-three days I could feel a stony place in my heart that had her name on it.  After that I realized when I chanted that it was gone.  Before I got to seven days I did one of my “consult the council” meditations during which I was told that i was done with the chanting for my aunt.  I had one or two left to do and it felt odd to leave my own challenge but I try to follow that guidance so I let it go.

I’d like to say that I had some dramatic release or feeling of being freed or a moment when I knew all was forgiven.  But really, it all felt kind of vague.  She’s been dead long enough that she doesn’t really enter my thoughts all that often but I feel relatively benign when I think of her now.  I didn’t experience a big shift this time.  Long ago I saw the wounded heart in her.  I guess I’d say this softened my feeling more and yet I still think she was a mean bitch.  That just doesn’t make me as mad as it used to.

I haven’t heard much from those of you I know participated.  Would love to read a post (put a link to me please so I know) or leave a comment here.

The new challenge.  Regular readers know that I put together a big ceremony a couple of weeks ago to break the hold of an ancestor on me and my line.  Click here to see the script.  I think we all have issues from the past that block us from being truly peaceful.  Sometimes the issues are from childhood, sometimes they’re from ancestral patterns, sometimes they’re from past lives.  My challenge to you is to pick an issue of whatever variety and create your own ceremony/ritual to release that issue.

You can see from my outline that I planned a long ceremony and incorporated elements from several traditions.  Several posts in the next week after the ceremony describe each part of the ceremony (one still to come).  You don’t have to use a single thing that I used, but feel free to check it out and incorporate anything you want.  Pick a practice or practices from any tradition(s) you wish, make it as long or as short as you wish (I recommend that it be at least 10 minutes).  I want you to have time to look inward, decide what issue you want to release and to take your time planning what you want to do so you have until midnight on Sunday October 27 to complete the ceremony.

Don’t hesitate to get in touch if you want suggestions.  There’s a private comment box on the CPS page and you can also e-mail me at collpraysun at gmail dot com.

As always, please tell us about your experience in your comments or write a post about it and include a link to this blog and tag it CollPraySun or start a discussion on the Facebook page.

Ceremony Breakdown: Protection

My sense that I needed to add a protection piece stemmed, to be honest, from my vague understanding of things like wicca and calling in spirits and being locked down by a dead ancestor…  I generally prefer to assume positive outcomes.  But in this case I wasn’t sure what the to-be-banished-ancestor could do and I wanted to have boundaries set so that when I called in ancestors and guides, no miscellaneous unwanted entities could show up.

After looking through my books and searching on the internet I chose two spells from a web site, Wiccan Spells,  You can see the two spells on the post about the ceremony.  I chose one to close my mind to outside influence mainly to block any possibility that the ancestor whose spell I attempted to break could affect me.  The other, the Golden Mist Shield Spell was to create a safe sacred space inside the circle.  The main point for that one was to make sure when I called the ancestors and guides that only high vibration entities could join my ceremony.

For me setting protection mainly served to underscore my usual intent for only positive, highest good outcomes.  I felt that by creating a ritual for that I bolstered my expectation of only good outcomes.  There are lots of protection spells out there.  I liked these two because they’re simple and don’t require props or hunting through the woods searching for the feathers of an obscure bird…  I also sprinkled salt, a traditional wiccan protection measure, around the circle.  It’s supposed to prevent evil from entering.

Between the chants creating a high vibration and the protection spells, I felt that I sat in a strong, safe place when I got to the meat of the ceremony.  That made it exactly the ceremony I wanted.

Ceremony Breakdown: The Chants

Ganesha by Kirti Krishna Badkundri on Wikimedia

For a “wiccan” ceremony I suppose some would consider it odd to spend the first half hour saying and singing Tibetan and Sanskrit chants.  But as I’ve pointed out before, I like to put together elements of different traditions that speak to me.  If you’ve not been following along on this journey, I’m going to list some posts below.

The overall reason for chanting, after calling in the four directions to consecrate the circle, arose from my sense that I wanted my vibration to be in the highest and best alignment to the desired outcome.  Ordinarily I would have chanted the lovingkindness chant for myself, but since it was also Collective Prayer Sunday, in this case I chanted for earth (making it a two-fer???).  No matter for whom I chant my heart always opens and fills me with loving energy and that seemed like just the way I wanted to start.

The second chant, which I sang along with Deva Premal (it’s on her Mantras for Precarious Times album) was Om Gum Ganapatayei Namaha.  It’s a chant to Ganesha for Removing of Obstacles.  I’ve chanted it off and on for years, originally just speaking it but when I got Deva’s recording I sometimes just played it for hours. Then I began to sing along.  I love its power and it seemed a perfect choice to call upon Ganesha for assistance in destroying an obstacle given that my ceremony aimed to remove the obstacle placed by my ancestor.

The third chant I just learned by participating in Deva’s 21 Day Meditation series.  Om Namo Bhagavate Vasudevaya is a chant for Liberation.  I loved it immediately (really I’ve been loving everything in this series) and liberation also seemed a good theme to add to my ceremony.

By the time I finished chanting my energy had grown and flowed through me.  I felt powerful and full of heart and ready to go.

Some of the posts that have chronicled this story:

The Unwinding Head Saga

Healing Journey: Jaw Connections

Opening to sight: the shaman, the witch and the ancestors

Stern and Stingy Ancestors

Working on Your Ancestors

Healing the Ancestors

Cranio-Sacral, Completion and Challenge

The Witch is Back

Ceremony Plans

Breaking the Ancestor’s Spell