We visited a dear friend yesterday. She just returned from a trip where she explored mystical sites with a group of spiritually inclined people. Her stories led me to a reflection on what a teacher or ‘guru’ should be like. It is so easy for someone to proclaim yourself a guru, especially if you have the technical skills to access a different realm. I was pondering all this on the way home and it came to me what a teacher should be (and what he should not). A teacher does not tell you who or what you should be (no matter which ascended master they talk to). He doesn’t tell you what your problems are. Essentially, the main job of a teacher is to make sure that you won’t need him at all. A teacher does not tell you what to learn and what to believe. A true teacher provides experiences by which you may learn your own lessons.  Everyone has the wisdom to learn and the ability to connect to the Divine. A teacher is merely an intermediary through which you may realize that it is so.

So, here we go: experience #2. (If you are not done exercise #1, no worries. Take your time)

The next 4 weeks will be dedicated to elemental explorations. These are exercises that I have adapted from my teacher Scarlet at Crescent Moon School. I have also seen these in various books, so they are a cornerstone of energy work.

Energy comes in various forms, and none are more basic than the Elements. Earth, Air, Fire, Water and Spirit are the building blocks of our reality and so it is important to know the different textures of these energies. So these exercises will aim at really interacting with the different elements. First element: Earth.

Earth is assigned to the North quarter. It is the essence of stability and physical strength. It is found in different forms: earth, stones, gemstones, crystals, salt, sand, plants and trees. Here are a few associations found with Earth:

Archangel: Raphael

Ritual tools: pentacle disk, drums and percussion instruments

Altar representation: salt, plant, stones, herbs

Color: green, brown

Magical uses: Typically, I would ask everyone to come up with some magical uses. You would be surprised at how many you could come up with. I encourage you to give it a try before you go and peek at the examples.

The most obvious use of Earth is for grounding. All magic starts with that. There is an example in the book and we will definitely come back to it. Grounding is a way of connecting to the earth so as to feel solid and strong. You are essentially rooting yourself into the ground becoming an extension of the rich earth that supports us. We’ll get back to that… Otherwise, Earth is mostly used for purification purposes. Salt is the main agent of Earth purification. Its crystalline structure lends itself well to trapping and negating energy. Salt can be used to cleanse objects (earth can too, but salt tends to leave objects a little cleaner…), cast circles, purify a house and purify your own energy field (bath salts, right?) Herbs and plants can be used for healing (please don’t play with plants you don’t know!), for cleansing (sage is the reference for all types of fumigation), for making incenses… Can you think of other examples?

Now for the experience part:

This week pay attention to the element of Earth. Look at the different forms it takes in the world around you. Touch it, feel it, smell it, taste it. Write down all your observations. How do you describe Earth? How does it make you feel? Is it a familiar feeling or do you feel that you are getting ‘down to earth’ for the first time?

This week, your task is to become Earth. Walk like Earth, talk like Earth, think like Earth. Another part of the assignment (it is not optional) is to make up a dance that represents Earth. How would Earth move? Feel this element within your very body and let it teach you the secrets of Earth.

So to sum it up, you should journal:

  • the different forms of Earth you see
  • describe the attributes of Earth (smell, taste, touch, sound, how it makes you feel and what are its inherent qualities)
  • Find 5 practical uses and 5 magical uses for Earth
  • Become Earth
  • Earth Dance

The space is open for discussions, if you like. I don’t want to go into too much detail, because that would deprive you of a valuable experience. But I am open for questions and I will come back to Earth at the end of the week. Once we will have covered all the elements, we will have gone through the core of what energy work really is about. The rest is just technique. So delve into it and enjoy the ride!

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