As we make our way through this incarnation, our spiritual evolution is always refining the way we balance solitude and community, sovereignty and relationships.
When we are on a spiritual path and are living with or working with others who may not be into that so much, we need solitude to keep our vibration at a level that expands our spirituality, keeps our energy clear and gives it a chance to equalize. The trick is getting enough solitude at the right time while still being able to feel comfortable and connected in our relationships.
The law of entrainment says that two energies who are together for a period of time will start to sync at the same frequency. Sometimes it is at the higher frequency and sometimes it is not.
Just because one person’s frequency is higher than another’s doesn’t make that person any better or more spiritually evolved. It is an individual process that can only be measured of and by oneself. The more important measurement is if we are feeling good in our own energy.
This is not a judgement in any way, as our energy bodies fluctuate as we go through different experiences in our lives, and we also get affected by collective and outer events. And everyone is on their own path and has the freedom to choose how they want to be in the world. This is why relationships are complicated.
If we are on a spiritual path and live and work with others, we need to make sure we have time alone to attune our energy, and time alone in nature to attune our spirit. We also need time alone to recharge our compassion for those we are in relationship with, and time for clarity and compassion for ourselves. When we do that, we realize that we don’t have to compromise our energy, and we can bring our authentic self to all our relationships.
"1996 Jocassee Quiet Solitude" by anoldent is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0
So many of us started our spiritual paths as solitaries. Our circumstances were all different, some of us may have come from families that did not understand our openness to Spirit, or our search for meaning in life. Maybe we were brought up in religious structures that were more dogma that spirit, or we may have had a curiosity about other cultures and belief systems. But the result was the same - it left us on our own to explore different spiritual practices.
When I started my journey with meditation and tarot as a teenager, there was only one other friend my age who I could talk to about such topics. As I broadened into Wiccan and Goddess wisdom studies in my 20’s, I felt like I couldn’t share that with many friends either, and preferred to keep that part of myself hidden from most other people. Keep in mind I am a Gen-Xer and when I was a teen and in my early 20’s, we didn’t have household computers or cell phones – there was no internet for the public use then. I did all my exploring and studying with books. Connecting with others meant face to face meetings at bookstores, meditation centers and by synchronicity.
Now thirty plus years later we can study any topic through our screens and can connect to people and groups anywhere in the world in minutes. That can lead to the other end of the spectrum – too much connection that can distract us from our inner work! However it does give us the amazing opportunity to meet with kindred spirits all over the world.
I have a connection with a new friend in another country who is also a shamanic practitioner and visionary. She is around my age and has done much work as a solitary in the past. She and I had a great conversation via Zoom where we both concluded that the time for solitary work is done and now is the time for the shift to working in community.
Some of us who have been solitary for so long and are happily introverted may feel uncomfortable at first switching gears. But we realize that after working on ourselves for so many years, we have gone as far as we can go, we’ve hit a plateau. What takes it to the next level in our inner work is outer work. It means that we take the steps to put ourselves out there to share our gifts with the world. Maybe some of us have felt the draw to start our own practice to help others. If we have had the training and the years of experience, we could be feeling nudges from Spirit that points to this being our path. We may be called to start our own business as a practitioner, healer, teacher, life coach, artist, or other service provider. Or maybe we are called to be in service inside our communities by starting a shamanic journey circle, a Reiki share group, a spiritual book coffee chat or other group. Coming together in community to practice, share ideas, and support one another on our spiritual paths fuels our well-being and the well-being of the world.
Covid helped bring this to light for so many people. Even though we were forced into solitary circumstances via lockdown, we now had the technology, time, and motivation to connect. That opened new opportunities for community, friendships, and work groups that could connect from wherever they were. What a gift!
Screens cannot replace the in-person gatherings and circles that feed our souls in such a strong way. Being able to hold hands around a circle and hugging one another is such an important part of human living. But whether we come together online or in person, the important part is the coming together. We know that when we set intentions as a group the energy is amplified exponentially. We have the power to make beneficial change in the world by being weavers that extend a webwork of thriving throughout our communities. We just have to take that first step and pick up the thread.
Sitting in stillness, peace suffuses my body. I am aware of my inner landscape but not questioning or analyzing. There is no sound, no vision, no body, but I am sometimes aware of the deep blue-purple chakra of my 3rd eye at the top of my perception. I accept the gift of this nothingness.
Eventually I become aware of the sounds of birdsong and traffic. Morning commuters rush by in four lanes 300 yards in front of me and on the two lanes 100 yards behind me. It makes me realize with some surprise that I did not hear them at all in the nothing.
I stretch and drum softly to initiate my daily check in with Spirit. My spirit teacher is there in my Otherworld. I ask her what I need to know today. She leads me to the porch of her cabin, and we sit. She gives me a glass of lemonade swirling with effervescent life force. I feel my connection to it – I am the lemonade, the life force, the chair, the forest, my teacher. Animal friends come to sit with us, and we are all quiet for what feels like both a long time and no time. The sun goes down, and fireflies light up the area like tiny yellow lanterns.
The stillness of just being is the lesson. In those moments, great work is done. Quiet healing happens when we are not thinking too hard about it. We tend to get caught up in the urgency to do our work - settle our karma, raise our vibration, heal the world, ascend to higher levels. And if we are here on earth now, yes, chances are that all of those and more are part of our purpose. But there are times we need to put away the action, the work, the drive and just be in stillness. In those moments everything catches up in us and we do the important job of integration.
The gift of nothing is what we receive, but also what we give. The peaceful energy we generate ripples out in all directions. Like the light of a far away star shining down on us, it just keeps giving its radiance to all. Even though it may take thousands of years for that light to reach us from that snapshot in time, we still receive the gift.
To help you tend to soul issues that may manifest in physical, emotional, mental or spiritual aspects of your life, and to give you tools to empower your path to harmony and well-being.
-There are so many kindredspirits doing the work out there. I include these links to help our community connect with one another.
SACRED HOOP Magazine Guide to Shamanism Compilation- http://www.sacredhoop.org/Pages/FreeGuide.html
Kitzie's podcasts include interviews with artists and kirtan music. I love attending her weekly Satsang group and the New World Kirtan Band concerts -
My friend and herbalist mentor, Lawrence Birch is a Certified Clinical Herbalist, plant whisperer and shamanic practitioner. If you need custom tincture blends or are interested in a wildcrafting apprenticeship, he is the teacher extraordinaire:
Roger Wheelock and Gayle Ruth are shamanic practitioners and teachers in the Pachakuti Mesa Tradition. https://www.rainmother.com/ I am grateful to be able to take part in ceremony with them, and to support their love for the Peruvian people through the World Ayni Association.