Hart en Ziel, The Leudal Festival, will take place on September 6, 2020 in the Trefcentrum Aldenghoor from 1 p.m. to...
A brief history of spirituality
Could it have been that way? Sometime in a stone age cave? One morning one of the clan reports that they had talked to their parents in their dream. Although everyone remembers a dream every now and then, it usually fades quickly and disappears into oblivion. Sometimes an incognisable impression remains that keeps you busy throughout the day. But talk to the parents who are long dead? That’s a sensation. Not only does someone remember a dream in detail, he even talked to the dead.
So they are not just gone, but they continue to exist and can return to the living to communicate with them in their dreams. That changes everything.
No wonder that the other members of the clan want to know how the deceased loved ones are doing and whether they have something important to tell them. That makes the dreamer practice. How do you do that, staying conscious in the dream, actively intervening and asking questions and remembering everything at will? Is there help? Rituals? Herbs? Drugs?
Over time, the dreamer develops a know-how. He does not always succeed in calling the spirits of the deceased, but a certain amount of routine sets in, and more people who seek advice turn to him. His status in the group changes. New questions arise. If it is possible to speak with the dead, could it be possible to speak with the wind, the river, the thunder, the animals? If you could find out if the hunt is worthwhile, where the game is and the fish? And what if someone is ill or injured? Do the spirits of the afterlife know what to do?
Who has access to this kingdom, gets the role of the sage, healer and priest. In the beginning of the specialization of the early human community, the dreamer assumes a (co-) determining position, which becomes more and more important the more he Turns out to be right. Did the herb heal the sick, did the depressed find new courage after speaking with the deceased, did the deer stay where they were expected, and was the weather favorable for the venture?
Some ethics are on the way. If one behaves modestly and kindly asks, brings gifts and makes sacrifices, then the spirit behaves graciously and generously. So you become - at least for a while - master of your own destiny.
You thank the animal that you killed and leave some of it. You do not kill for fun, but to survive. Every animal has a soul that is valuable and worthy of respect. How else could it be possible to talk to him? Everything that lives has a soul according to this logic. The tree, the flower, the river and the rain, the whole nature is animated. And the one who communicates with everything is the shaman. A term that, of course, only became popular after Michael Harner in the 1980s transferred it from Siberia to all traditional healers and medicine men and women. Interestingly, now in his native America, people call the healers Shaman, the world is growing together.
And so it was with the spirits. With the emergence of religion the abstraction of thought began, and it went to the meta-level. The spirit of the individual pine receded behind the pines in their entirety, which in turn gave way to the spirit of the forest, that of nature, and suddenly there were the all-controlling gods on top of it all. While in ancient Greece the three macho gods Zeus, Poseidon and Hades were at the helm, while others lacked the authority to exercise power, spiritual power finally focused on just one single god and the big picture within short time.
Sometimes it seems appropriate to turn back to the level one, to what is represented by shamanism, the return to the small forces that offer help when making peace with them. The worldview of shamanism is a coherent one. Although it is based on a lot of ignorance - what did the early humans know about weather conditions and low pressure areas, atoms and cell mutations, how could they, and yet they developed a useful compass for their world. Instead of measuring devices, they had to rely on close observation, intuition and experience. Skills that are at risk of being lost in times when children no longer learn handwriting because they use tablets. Is not digitization a form of abstraction? Experiences are no longerbeing made by oneself, they are digitized. Honestly? I am afraid of the day when the power goes out and countless people die of starvation because they can not open their canned ravioli without an electric can opener. Let alone go out and find something to eat and prepare it.
Anyway, the topic is spirituality, shamanism and in particular the use of plants and herbs. Some of which we find in modern flower therapy.
Burning dried plants and inhaling the smoke was one of the early techniques that shamans used to make dream experiences. Flower essences have the advantage that you can benefit from the plants without having to ruin your lungs. One of them is called Dreamherb, meanwhile their „real name“ is
(American) Mugwort - Artemisia douglasiana
The „American“ I have added to prevent confusion with the native (European) mugwort. I’ll come to that soon.
From California, where the Mugwort Essence was first produced, comes the info „Integrating psychic and dream experiences into daily life; multidimensional consciousness „. It is also said that „mugwort enhances the receptive quality of the psyche and allows greater awareness of dreams so that the self can gain insight into the affairs of daily life and gain access to guidance from the spiritual world.“
Now let’s take a look at the species native to our latitudes:
Mugwort - Artemisia vulgaris
This flower looks very, very similar. Traditionally, pillows were filled with Mugwort in Europe to achieve beautiful dreams. It has been (and will) be used to harmonize the menstrual cycle, to tune it to the moon, which in turn is symbolic of the night and the dreams. Incidentally, namesake Artemis was also nocturnal being, pictures show her hunting in the moonlight. Mugwort balances our biorhythm, makes it adaptable and promotes harmony with nature.
A third Artemisia Art completes the trio essence, it is Artemisia absinthum, Wormwood, which promotes authenticity. You do not want to dream nonsense when you’re on a spiritual quest, but prefer to gain information that is valuable and that will help you personally.
is a combination remedy for all who want to come to terms with themselves, to accept their inner nature, instead of denying it, who are brave, curious and ready to enter uncharted territory, gain insight and make new experiences. It helps the dreaming not only to remember their dreams, but possibly even to become aware of them, while they dream and be able to intervene in the dream event. This gives you the opportunity to personally ask the burning questions. You could become a shaman yourself.