A Guide to Alternative Religions

And Their Opponents (Vers. 2.0)

Chapter 8

About Shamanism


Satinka Istari

For our purposes, you need a basic understanding of shamanism. This "definition" comes from my own ecclectic background and is not intended to reflect any group's traditional philosophy.

In a nutshell, a shaman is one who, with the aid of her allies in nature, accesses inner worlds in search of knowledge to solve problems, heal, and gain new experiences. Shamans are one with nature, understanding that all things are part of one web of energy. Plants, rocks, water - all parts of nature - have their own spirits, which may look nothing at all like the physical object. Respect for all life, and an openness to information and experience are all that is required for a shaman to be effective.

Shamanism has a built-in teaching system. On your first few journeys, you will meet spirits and power animals. Finding your own power animal (if you haven't already) gives you a guardian that will help and protect you, as well as teach you, and introduce you to others who will teach you. The following exercises are designed to help you meet and interact with power animals and spirit allies. They require no investment in materials - a comfortable, quiet, dimly lit place to lay down is all you need to start with. Tapes of drumming are helpful to some, but any relaxing music (or none at all) can be used to journey at first.

Your First Journey:

Get comfortable on your back on a supportive surface, in a dimly lit room, and do some basic relaxation exercises. Pay special attention to your breathing; breathe from your diaphragm in slow, rhythmic motions.

When you are relaxed, visualize a cave, a well, an opening in the earth of some kind that you have seen (in person or through pictures). Approach this cave, and enter. Try to involve all of your senses - See the rock, the vegetation, animal tracks on the ground; pools of water may exist, or stalagtites and stalagmites glisten in the dimmer light. Hear the sounds outside/inside (bats, dripping water, wind in the grass or trees outside, gravel or sand crunching on the ground as you walk), feel the humidity/temperature and the solidity of the ground under foot. Smell the earthy-ness of the inside - dry rock, or damp earth? Does the scent bring a taste to your mouth?

Look at the inside of the opening. Is it one large "room", or do passages branch off? Are there rocks or sand, or clay? Notice the surroundings in as much detail as you can. Now look around for some being. It might be a ball of light a bird, a reptile - almost anything. Be respectful, and tell this being why you are here. Be prepared to journey - by flight or running or walking, if necessary. Frequently you may just find yourself "there" where you need to be. Other times the process to get there can be lengthy. In any case, keep up with your guide, and be open to whatever happens.

You may meet many animals on your journey. These are not specific animals, but racial archtypes of the animals. You will meet, therefore, Eagle, not a specific eagle (or even a specific species of eagle, although there are differences among them).

Animals with bared fangs or who adopt hostile postures should be avoided, but an animal who speaks to you in a friendly way and who wants to help you should be welcomed as a friend. Even when confronted with hostile animals or "icky" things (slime, fog, masses of snakes), be calm and respectful of them. Often these manifestations are some kind of problem within you or your environment that need to be dealt with. You should NOT try to deal with any such thing until you have a guardian to help however. Remember that your human strength is slight, and you don't yet know how to use your full strength in this world. Let your power animal handle the problems for you. That is what they are there for.

In finding a power animal, don't be fooled by an animal's seemingly powerless or fragile appearance - all animals are powerful in their own way. Therefore, welcome a turtle as well as a panther, or a deer as much as a flacon. Power animals don't always stay with you forever, and when you have learned what your first one needs to teach you, a different animal will come along to replace that one as you grow. (Although some cultures believe you can have only one power animal guardian at a time, actually, you can have many. I frequently find mine come in pairs of opposites: falcon and eagle, for example, or fox and wolf. These are transient teachers, however. You will find over time that only ONE animal sticks close and is your guardian).

When you have spoken to an animal spirit and it has agreed to be your guardian and ally, you need to find out some things. Ask the animal what you need to do to make it happy. What does it want to teach you? How can it help you in your life in the physical world? This is YOUR time to get acquainted and build a foundation that could last the rest of your life. Don't be alarmed if the animal says you'll discuss it later, that's okay. The point is, don't just assume that once you have the animal it's always going to be there. This is a relationship, and will require a little work on your part. Fortunately, the animal is a willing guide and helper and will do a great deal of the work for you that is beyond your power to handle.

When the conversation is finished, THANK YOUR POWER ANIMAL AND ANY OTHER GUIDES/BEINGS you met, and retrace your steps to the cave/hole entrance. Your guide may accompany you, or may not. In any case, leave the cave the way you came in, and walk away from it back toward waking consciousness.

I suggest you write down your journey, start to finish, as soon as you are fully grounded. If for some reason you have returned to the cave entrance by a different path and cannot remember all of your journey, just write down what you do remember. And don't worry if your first journey wasn't a total success - they get easier as you go along.

Although this journeying technique can be done anytime, you may notice that some times during a monthly cycle, you have problems. For some people, the new moon is a good time to work; for others, it's the pits! Try to gradually recognize your own cycle so that you can attempt truly "heavy" journeys on your good days.

One of the most logical questions you can ask about this process is "what's in it for the animal?" After all, you've taken on an animal that will guide you, teach you, defend you, and do work in the other world that you can't handle for yourself. What do they get out of it?

As my own animal explains it, his world is very different from my own. To be born in physical form in my world enables him to partake only of a very narrow portion of what is really here, because wild animals have very little contact with the human world. Through his work with me, he learns about the human side of the world, the emotional, thinking and spiritual phases that he has not experienced for himself. The reverse is also true - if you want to know what it's like to be an eagle, the best way is to see through Eagle's eyes for a short time. They are nearly always willing to do this.

Physical sensation is a particular delight to these allies, since they exist in a non-physical world. The tradition of "dancing your animal" comes from this. It's a simple, if sometimes initially embarassing, procedure: put on a drumming tape or some music, and begin to mimic the walk, movement, sound of your animal. This is awkward at first, and also funny in a way. For example, prancing around like a stag is harder for two-leggeds than for four!. But persist - and be CONSCIOUS of the merging of the animal's energy with yours. Soon you will find that your body does bend, sway and move as your animal does.

If you can do this outside, it's even better. A human with a head cold can be surprised to be catching the scent of one dandilion in a large lawn, or the scent of small burrowing animals under the leaf-litter. This is the power of your animal, making itself at home with you. It's the beginning of the old "shape-changing" craft, and a humbling and astonishing experience.

Dancing your animal frequently gives them pleasure and heightens the bond between you. I have even been told that the animals will occasionally "dance their human." (You will find that these animals are not just le intelligence and often engaging senses of humor!).

A basic map of the spirit worlds:

The Underworld - symbolized by the roots of the World Tree or Tree of Life, this is the place you will journey to find and channel lost information, commune with your ancestors, and find information on survival skills relating to the physical body (healing, etc.). THIS IS NOT A SAFE PLACE TO GO WITHOUT YOUR POWER ANIMAL. Just as you wouldn't climb the Alps alone, I suggest you journey into this land only with a guide or (preferably) with your power animal to guard you.

The Middle World - symbolized by the trunk of the Tree, this is roughly correspondant to your everyday physical reality, on the other side. This is where you look for things that are lost, people you want to find or communicate with (who are still alive), find a job, find a lover, etc. Anything pertaining to normal reality on this plane is dealt with in the Middle World. The four sides of the trunk of this World Tree are equivalent to the four directions (a cross section of the trunk would make a medicine wheel...).

The Upper World - symbolized by the branches of the Tree, is the realm of fantasy and creativity. It is also where you go to find out what the future holds. And to plant the "spirit seeds" of those things you want to make happen in the future.

There is no "better" world - each realm has it's reasons and purposes for existing. Because the key to shamanic work is BALANCE, it would be silly (not to mention bad for your work!) to visit one realm to the exclusion of the others. Again, take your power animal or a guide with you. This is their natural world, and they recognize the inhabitants and their intent much more readily than you will for some time to come.

Feel free to journey anytime you need to meet with your power animal, or any time you need the answer to an important or serious question. Reasons of love, employment, social and familial problems are NOT trivial if they are important to you. And journeying for the simple reason of finding out information is sufficient, if you are truly interested in the results.

You will use the help of your power animal and other guides extensively in the chakra exercises that follow. They want to be an involved and important part of your life (nothing drives off a power animal faster than neglect - leaving you dis-spirited, and power-less!) You should also learn to see/talk with them in your waking state. The ability to tap both worlds at once, to pull knowledge from the shaman's world while you are sitting open-eyed and alert in a board meeting or on a plane, is of tremendous value. (Just DON'T try it while you're driving!).

Shaman 101 - B

The "spirit body" refers to that "lightly physical" body made up of energy from your own energy system, especially your chakras. This is often called a "subtle" body, because although it is roughly similar to the physical body that we are familiar with, it is also influenced by the thoughts and energies of other people and beings of all kinds. This influence can manifest itself in many ways: physical feelings of joy or unease, actual physical illness, ahorrence of something new, or something triggers bad memories.

It is the spirit body that recoils upon meeting someone you instinctively know is evil, or that causes your "skin to crawl" when you are in a place antethical to your being. Anger, fear and hostility can "color" your subtle body - the outside of which is your "aura" - and make it possible for someone with trained eyes to see your problems. Even more, this body can absorb influences and energies from other levels, and translate them to the physical plane -usually in the form of improving or lowering your physical condition.

To learn to know and use your subtle body, your spirit body, is to become active in more than the everyday "real" world. It is your spirit body that journeys with your power animal, and has intercourse with the worlds and beings beyond this physical world.

Here are two techniques for getting acquainted with your spirit body. At least ONE of them will work in some degree for you.


To see your spirit body, stand nude before a mirror in a darkened (but not totally dark) room. Focus your eyes on your reflection, and then gradually shift that focus about three feet behind your image. The slightly blurred reflection of your physical body may appear to be surrounded by a shell or egg of light. The actual image could vary largely from your actual physical image - the subtle body is shaped by thoughts and emotions.

The outermost layer of this body may show many colors - this your aura, and at any given time it may extend from 1/2 inch to several feet in all directions from your body. Your spirit body usually extends only an inch or two outside the outlines of your physical body. Strands of power from your chakras blend into this subtle body at the different power sites. At this point, notice any murky or dark colors that don't seem right to you - especially around your chakras -and consciously lighten and brighten them up.

Now, while you are still looking at your subtle body in the mirror, you can consciously make changes in it. You can make it smaller, larger, thinner, whatever suits you. Change your hair color or style if you like. This is the "you" that the other world sees when you journey. This is the "you" that is eventually reflected in the physical body. (A weight loss tip there, if you choose to follow it! - consistently making a change in your subtle body will eventually make in permanent, and it will reflect back on the physical body!).

When you feel familiar with this new body, gradually shift your focus back to your actual reflection on the mirror's surface. Stamping a foot on the ground may be required to "ground" you sufficiently into the physical world.

Do this exercise in SHORT increments (about 5-8 minutes to start with), so that you don't overload your 6th chakra and develop a whopping headache!


If you have no luck with the mirror technique, or cannot try it for some reason, there is another way to explore your spirit body. Lay on your bed or other surface, and relax. (The fewer clothes you wear, the easier this will be, although it's worked for everyone I know who has tried it.) Rub your physical hands together until the palms are quite warm. Now gently and slowly, hold them over any part of your body about a foot from the surface, palms down, and begin to lower them toward your body. At some point, you will feel a tingling or cooling sensation in your palms. Keeping that sensation in mind, slowly move your hands up and down along your body. You are feeling for the surface of your spirit body, and that sensation will be your key to where it is.

With this technique, you need to be aware of changes in vibration rate or temperature. The areas over your chakras themselves should be the easiest to feel, with the feeling lessening slightly as you get further away.

Once you are familiar with the boundaries of your spirit body, you can do the same "thought" exercises as above. Since blindly "thinking" something is less effective, try the following:

From where you are laying, consciously move your spirit body about 3 feet ahead of you. You will be looking at it from the back, through your physical eyes. Now, using your hands, if you like, mold your spirit body as you wish. Notice any dark or murky places, and consciously will them to become lighter, more pleasant colors. Exercise your will on this subtle body as if you were creating a sculpture of the IDEAL you.

When you have finished the process, gently bring your spirit body back to your physical body, and end your relaxation in your normal way. Again, do this in short increments at first. Too much effort or too long an exercise may give you a constricted feeling in the heart or solar plexis area.

Now that you know about your subtle body, you will need to monitor it frequently. Try to be aware when a person or situation is stripping energy from you, and take steps to block that "vampirism" of your energy. If you know a situation could lead to an attack on your energies. This is where your power animal can be a big help. If you know a situation could lead to an attack on your energies, ask your power animal to guard you, and repel boarders!

I would practice getting in touch with the subtle body for a week or two, or longer - until you are comfortable with it. Then, when you have some time and will be uninterrupted, you can begin to work with your chakras to open and balance them. Before you do begin, please be aware that in your work with your chakras you may open some "cans of worms" that will cause physical or emotional reactions. If you have someone you are close to who might be affected by this, you might try to prepare them by letting them know that you are trying to work through some old memories or problems. Because you have your power animal to guide and help you, you should have far less trauma in this housecleaning effort than if you tried to undertake it with a human helper!

The following information about your chakras is meant as a review, not an all-encompassing discussion. It will enable you to put into practice RIGHT NOW the kind of control that will make you more effective in dealing with problems on all levels. If this area appeals to you, or you feel you need really deep work, you might consult a reputable person who deals in auric work for more information.

Shaman 101-C

The primary goal of the following exercises is to introduce you to, and enable you to work with, the chakras that make up your spirit body. While most people have heard of chakras, and many have had some experience in dealing with them, relatively few know how to use them to advantage. This is not only useful in esoteric realms, it is helpful in daily life. A brief explanation of the chakras is in order for those who need some "brushing up."

Beginning at the point where the feet touch the earth, and ending above the physical head, there are a number of energy vortices, generally known as chakras, spaced along a vertical line from the feet up through the spinal column and out past the top of the head. If you can see them, the surface of these chakras have the appearance of half-dollar sized discs or wheels, each rotating at an individual speed. They have color and vibrational and planetary correspondances, as well, although we will only touch on that in this series. And, for shamanic purposes, they are also tunnels through which you can travel inward into adventure.

Although there are MANY chakras, there are seven chakras that are worked with in these exercises. If you are interested in the Eastern names and relationships of these (and other) chakras, there are plenty of books available on them. For the time being, let's simply call them by numbers for ease of identification.

Chakra 1, for our purposes, lies at the base of the spine, the sacrum. The color of this chakra is red, which corresponds to vibrant life. Survival is the key of this chakra, and it is here you access ancestral memories from this and other lives. Incidents that frighten you/threaten your survival (including financial reverses) can cause this tunnel to open to the point where you lose valuable energy. Without the grounding provided by this chakra, you can begin to feel "spaced out", and become anxious and fearful. Maintaining this chakra in a balanced and controlled state is necessary to maintain good physical health. Additionally, this is the seat of Kundalini, the power that can be raised through all the chakras to open blockages and promote healing. (There are a number of books on this subject, too, if you choose to pursue it.)

Chakra 2 is located just below the naval, above the womb in a woman. This chakra (variously seen as pink or orange) controls raw emotion, sexual energy and attraction and fertility functions. Blockages here often have their roots in sexual traumas experienced in childhood or another lifetime. (This need not be sexual abuse, but simply frightening or unsettling situations that were never fully resolved.) People of both sexes with chronic abdominal problems often need to balance and unblock this tunnel.

Chakra 3 is in the solar plexus, above the naval. Generally seen as yellow, this is a center of will and action. From this chakra, access can be gained to leadership skills, assertiveness and the ability to withstand extreme physical exertion. This chakra also acts as an overall balancing system for the body's energy level. This is the seat of Ki. or Chi, or Miwi, that many people know of, and few learn to control. The greatest single cause of blockage in this area is a lack of self-esteem rooted deep in the childhood or another lifetime. Learning to control and take charge of this tunnel will enable you to deal with oppresive people and situations without being threatened, and to exert yourself physically (such as racing or swimming) when necessary without undue depletion.

Chakra 4 is the heart chakra. This is probably the most talked about, and the most improperly exercised, chakra in the modern New Age movement. The heart chakra controls emotion, affinity for the environment, and affectionate and intimate relationships. The chakra itself is usually green, although pink stones are associated with balancing this area. Most often, this chakra is closed because of unresolved grief. At an adult level, this can happen for short periods after arguments or breakups, but when anger and hurt are unresolved from childhood or past incarnations, this chakra can become so blocked that the normal harmonic/loving feelings a person has are unable to escape. We know these people as cold, cynical, and hard to please.

Blockages in this area MUST be resolved in order to use the three higher chakras, which are higher vibrations of the first three. In most people, however, this is the stopping point of chakra work, if indeed they get this far. (I've often wondered if the large numbers of heart attacks in people in high-pressure situations is a result of too much Will (chakra 3) and not enough Love (chakra 4)...)

(It should be noted that there are a few people in whom the opposite problem exists: they are TOO open in this area. This allows legions of manipulative people to attack their self-esteem and hurt them, and they appear helpless to stop the cycle. Control is the answer - not just to open or close, but, with practice, to be able to control HOW open or closed this chakra/tunnel is, and thereby control the damage. At the same time, additional work with the third chakra (will) enables these individuals to raise their self confidence and the manipulators will be forced to move on if they want an easy target!)

Chakra 5, at the base of the throat, is light blue to lavender in color. This chakra is one of the most abused in the system, and one of most necessary for health. This chakra governs communication, artistic expression, and the abilities of clairaudience/channelling. Chronic ear or throat problems probably point to a blockage here (literally swallowing your words can cause trouble). Much of this stems from childhood memories of being ignored or ridiculed for attempts to communicate with adults. Also, creative expression in all forms, if stifled, will cause a blockage here. People with unpleasant voices frequently have a blockage here, which, with work, can be overcome.

If you think of the chakras as being on an ascending spiral, chakra 5 is the "higher" counterpart of chakra 3. Chakra 3's keynote is will as applied to physical form; chakra 5 is will applied to creativity on a spiritual level.

Chakra 6, located at the top of the bridge of the nose, between the eye brows, is indigo. It represents the "third eye" or "second sight", and is the basis of visioning work of all kinds. When open and functioning properly, it gives you s ike x-ray vision - the ability to see what people are trying to hide from you (especially useful in business deals!). Beside the ability to see the spirit bodies of others, and to see the spirits of all beings in their true form, this will enable you to "far see" into another time/dimension or into this world at a distance. (It is here that you may be able to "replay" past lives like movies, and be watching them, as well as experiencing them). Blockage here might include repressed imagination. Frequent headaches or sinus aches after extended periods of "people watching" might indicate a need to control this tunnel, to prevent overload.

Chakra 6 is the higher counterpart of Chakra 2. Fertility in the physical sense transmuted to fertility in the spiritual realm -taking the creativity of Chakra 5, and manifesting it, through the imagination, into spiritual vision.

Chakra 7 is the top of the head, and is in many ways a very important area for shamanic work. This is the tunnel that your spirit animal uses to come and go, and the one most shamans use for travelling. (Some schools of thought use the 3rd chakra as a "doorway" instead.). It is through this opening that knowledge from other worlds comes to us (intuitively?), and that our light and knowledge take wing. Frequent headaches in this area could indicate something trying to get in (or out) that is blocked. Most blockages in this area come from simply not recognizing the spiritual nature of this area. Most of us simply don't take the time to notice what happens "up there." Colors ascribed to this chakra included Violet, silver, gold and w , depending on the person involved.

Chakra 7 is the higher counterpart of chakra 1. This is chakra 1's survival on a physical level transmuted to survival in all the spiritual realms, including those which you yourself have created for this purpose.

It is not necessary to have an encyclopedic knowledge of chakras or energy systems within the physical and spiritual bodies in order to do these exercises. What IS necessary is the "seed" knowledge of what each chakra is, and an acceptance of your ability to influence this system by your concentrated effort.

The colors, planetary correspondances and other facts about your chakras are contained with the system, just waiting for you to introduce yourself. Rather than worry about studying or memorizing such information, relax! Here is the "important stuff" in a diagram that's easy to remember:

HEART (4) (Pink)

/ \
           (Blue) (5) Throat / = \ Solar Plexis (3) (Yellow)
  (Indigo) (6) Brow   / = \   Navel (2) (Orange)
 (Violet)(7) Crown   / = \   Sacral (1) (Red)    

In the next set of exercises, you will journey to a specific chakra, and with the help of your power animal, you will correct any problems you find there.

Shaman 101 - D

The exercise to clear and balance your chakras is deceptively simple. In essence, there are only a few major steps:

1. Relax

2. Call your power animal, and explain the purpose of your journey, which is to visit ONE chakra that may be blocked or out of balance, and to fix whatever the problem is.

3. After arriving at the location you have chosen and assessing the chakra's condition, decide with the help of your power animal what needs to be done. If any fighting or heavy work is necessary, allow your power animal to do it for you, since s/he is equipped to function effectively in this situation.

4. When the chakra is clear and functioning, ask your power animal to assign a guardian animal to this chakra. This will be a guard against intrusion from outside forces.

When you are introduced to this guardian, get acquainted with them, tell them what you need of them, and listen to what they tell you. At a later time, when some invasion is attempted, they will alert you to the conditions, allowing you to control the situation.

5. Thank your power animal and any other guides or guardians for their help, and return to the cave entrance, and then to normal reality.

Before you go on with this exercise, a few examples of both the working of this exercise and the results might be in order.

Obstacles you might meet in the tunnels are such entities as ugly bugs, vicious reptiles and slime or fungus-like growths. You will (more rarely) see hostile animals. You don't need to be afraid of any of these things. Merely circumvent them if you can. If you cannot, your power animal will take care of them. Other problems include chasms and floods and such. Just keep in mind that these are not actually threatening to your life or safety - they are indicators of problems or hostile "spirits" (energies) need to be handled. Your power animal is the best source of information on how, and when, to tackle them.

Occasionally, you may find that, although you complete the journey to your cave or whatever, your power animal or your guide refuses to take your farther. This happened to me when I had the flu, and thought I could leave it (and the boredom) behind by journeying. My guide met me at the entrance, and told me I didn't have the energy to do the journey without endangering my physical body. So much for that! A few days later when I was feeling better, I had no problem going on with the journey.

Some examples of what you can expect to achieve with these exercises.

From my own experience -

For most of my life, although physically healthy, I have been plagued with monstrous menstrual periods. Cramps for up to a week, and heavy bleeding for 7 or 8 days was not unusual. Pain medication and weakness from blood loss was a normal, although unwanted - part of my monthly calendar. Needless to say, this put a large obstacle in my activity schedule!

When I began working with my (male) power animal, I also began to realize that I had suppressed my female energy due to conditions from my early childhood, where my only role models were men. I asked my power animal to find me a female ally, and on that journey, I met a female eagle, and a female (perrigrine) falcon.

When I journeyed to open the sacral chakra, hopefully to solve my monthly problem, my power animal and I travelled there alone. When we got there, the tunnel was a rusty dark brown, and boarded up, with only a chink in one of the boards that allowed a trickle of energy through. My power animal took on the task of tearing down the dam, allowing all of the energy to come through and wash out the old debris. While he was occupied with this, Eagle appeared. She took me up above the dam and showed me how to control the energy flow without blocking it. Six days later, I had the first almost pain-free, 5 day normal menstrual period of my life - at age 40!

A friend's story -

A friend of mine had problems with a girlfriend. When he was around her, or thinking about her, he seemed to want nothing else. Yet, when he THOUGHT about what he found attractive about her, he found very little he liked! Using the journeying technique, he found that his heart chakra was inhabited by a little copy of her. In effect, she was "short-circuiting" his normal functions by invading his person for her own ends*.

By ejecting her, with the help of a power animal, and posting another power animal as a guard over this chakra, he gained control of his own heart again. He wanted to give her another chance, but after several more invasion attempts she decided she couldn't see him again, and he's since found someone to love who has more respect for him!

(*This is always a no-no. Every person has a right to keep their bodies inviolate. For example, heal someone only if they ask for it, or if you tell them you want to and they agree that you may. To invade someone else's person without permission - regardless of your good intentions, is just plain wrong! When you find this kind of invasive person in your life, GET RID OF THEM! Usually if you clear them out of the chakra, they soon disappear from your physical world situations as well. They are only interested in manipulating people, and will find an easier victim.).

Last story:

I have a friend who is a professional athlete. Every time he would get his career to a certain point, he would sustain an injury that put him out of business for a short time - just long enough to set his career off track. Using the journeying technique, he traced his problem back to elementary school. Chubby and shy, although quite intelligent, he allowed the other children to bully him, just so he would have friends. Although he's grown into a handsome, talented man, inside his 2nd chakra was a gaggle of children, reminding him that if he asserted himself, he would be ostracized. Rather than excelling in his sport, he was sabotaging his own career to childhood taunting! His answer to this dilemma was a classic example of creative humor: ousting the pack of children, painting the chakra tunnel bright orange, and hanging framed covers from Sports Illustrated (with his picture on them) all over the inside!

As you can see from the above examples, these exercises can be of benefit to nearly everyone in their physical world "every day" lives. Results tend to be creative rather than the "pow-zap" kind of miraculous. Remember to take advice (symbolic or otherwise) with grace and a sense of humor. (You will take a bit of teasing

- your power animal, while on your side, will still find some of the problems that beset you to be funny from their point of view! That does not stop them from doing their best for you!)

When you have worked with each chakra in turn, a last step would be to make sure they are open and in balance with each other. The overall system should feel harmonious - not too much of any one center manifesting overall. Once you have a feel for the powers you have in action, you can adjust the size and vitality of each chakra, closing slightly on overactive ones, and opening and energizing the quieter ones.

By all means, try using this technique when you are happy and welll, not just when you are in need of something. Every use of the chakra exercises strengthens your ties with the web of energy/life in the world/unit. Mother benefits, as much as we do, and all of Her spirits also.

Balance and Blessings

Satinka Istari 12/89