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This day is so precious. You are awakening.

Updated: Jan 5

The journey of self-discovery, the shamanic path, and its initiations is always the most adventurous, challenging, and exalting one can ever undertake. So often, the students in our school join the path in search of meaning, ease, magic, and liberation. Even if some of those might be met on the path, it is too often forgotten significant sacrifice and deep, long struggles might be born out of that sacred quest as a necessary purification process of deeply rooted false narratives.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

For me, without it, I would have probably stuck with and been killed by the violence and conformity of the capitalistic and colonial model of life. I would have stayed in a life too often described as "the way" our world is and not met the most daunting and yet essential questions of the soul.

The path of Awakening

There have been so many canyons to cross. Often for long years. But I also remember clearly a couple of the tipping points on that journey.

One was on stage for the "Entrepreneur of the Year" awards in NYC, giving my speech about "success" and realizing it was all a lie (that version of success) as the mask of external achievements I was wearing was hiding a deep inner turmoil, unhappiness, unhealthiness and profound lack of meaning and purpose. I often saw myself as a dying soul in a $2,000 suit in those years.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

The other tipping point was when I got stuck for 9 hours in a grounded plane due to a snowstorm and lost it as my privileged expectation of a platinum American Airlines traveler was not honored. I saw in the blink of an eye where this would lead me. A strong tunnel vision showed me in what seems an altered state of consciousness, a version of me in my old age I did not want to become but would become if I did not change path radically.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

Both, and much more unsettling, unavoidable, and loud inner turmoils, led me to start the long and often painful inquiry into who I am. Why am I here? What is life about? What is true happiness? And how to find meaning in my life.

I quickly realized the version of life taught, revered, and praised in our modern world would not lead me where I felt I had to go. Indeed, fear came in. Deep resistance to change arose. And multiple attempts to "leave" brought me back into more profound discomfort. But at some point, life "as it was became unacceptable." A dear Shambala teacher I met around those struggles and worked for many years told me: "You will never truly change until life as it is become unacceptable. Until you still have some kind of deal/contract with your old life". I didn't fully understand what he meant, nor what the sacrifice required would be.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

Decades later, the journey was and is worth it. I can see how the painful layers I had to shed, social connection to change, and new life to be lived were so necessary. Yes, also decades later, the search is still a daily process, something many forget when meeting authentic teachers. They do not have everything figured out; they are seekers, practitioners of the old ways, constantly assessing, inquiring, and discovering more profound layers of the self to birth and painful ego masks to shed.

So I keep meeting old parts of the self, new stories to be confronted, betrayal and anger in friends I considered safe and trustful, a difficult dance between the dark and the light that is the reality of honest red road walkers. We often feel love and deep sorrow in the same breath.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

I can see clearly now that 20 years ago, I was living but was not truly alive. I made costly soul compromises and poor life choices at the time to avoid the "jump into the raging river," as Grandmother Threecrow told me a story about (I will share another time).

What I thought had meaning was often a golden prison of fear, shame, self-delusion, and society-expected behaviors that were never mine. Even if the veil keeps clearing, the fog keeps lifting, there are still, to this day, some dark nights, vast places of not knowing. Something early seekers on the path often need to expect or understand.

What has become clear, too, is that I could have never dreamed of my life today. Never see my initiation into the shamanic realms. Never hope to create this vision, this prayer of "the Sanctuary" with all it unfolds and nurtures for so many. Never been humbled by such daily work of service.

Does it ever become easier? No.

Do we get better at it? Sometimes, yes.

Is it worth it? Oh yes.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

When on a path of self-discovery, we need specific skills that we don't always see as crucial or essential:

Discipline, immense daily discipline, to return to that prayer, to that vibration, to be self-aware of the many ways we fail ourselves and repeat behaviors we know are not in alignment with what we are calling.

Stamina, as this is a long (life) path, and there is the necessity to cultivate joy, rest, nourishment, and healthy support to go a long way and not abandon at the bigger step or more profound trigger.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

Wisdom, through the presence of elders who have walked (and are still walking) this path in authentic and committed ways. I am blessed by so many of them those days, and their words, daily reminders, and compassion for my life are of utmost value.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

And Love. Love for the self. The world. The land. We will not understand that kind of love by watching romantic comedies. It is a fierce, strong, powerful, loving grandmother love that sometimes will shuffle you around a bit when you are lost.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

As we enter this new calendar year into new realms of internal discovery and understanding of our trauma, neurodiversity, and the nature of our dark, wild territories, we are like newborn babies fascinated, curious, and sometimes scared by the grandiosity of the task at work. We have this magic waiting for us deep inside while we witness the pain of the world and the constant divide and inability to connect in permanent display.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

It's daunting and exciting, this task to surrender every morning into the great mystery of life.

To set a firm, clear, divinely inspired intention for the day.

To continuously tap into the whispers of our soul.

To stay aware of the calling of the creator.

This day is so precious; you are awakening.

And despite all the waves and windy times, to remain excited by the possibility of co-creation with Spirit, the never-ending great mystery at play, and the infinity of the not knowing in every direction we can look at.

So, let's keep dreaming and manifesting this sacred ceremony that we call life.

Are you up for it? Because, you know, this day is so precious; you are awakening.

Angell Deer

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Thanks for sharing Angell


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