I fear that as I move forward in collecting my thoughts about what I am doing, and how it is spiritual, I find that I fall into the normal and almost expected traps I tend to build for myself. I try so hard to find ways for my thoughts to fit within the science I study. I try so hard to solidify the efforts into something tangible. But when it comes down to it, you need to ask yourself, is this really spiritual at all? Is this really something I am doing on faith, or for my own path moving forward.
In an effort to make sure that I am keeping information centralized, I would like to outline the circumstances as to why I wrote the sermon I gave last week, and how I do regard it as part of my shamanic work. This is not something anyone has challenged me on, but I find having the context makes it easier to go back to, review, and accept it for what it is.
(This refers to the post: Unpacking your invisible Misa)
I was assisting with a project in December of 2014 at our congregation, and there were subtle pieces of conversation that truly illustrated to me that there is a fair amount of privilege our congregation holds, and some of the members speak in ways that make it harder to ignore. As someone who has been doing a fair amount of ego work, and a fair amount of work recognizing my own privilege, I emailed our Rabbi to suggest that we do a sermon on Privilege.
With so much of what I do in this community, I plant a seed, and wait for it to grow into something that starts to address the problem at hand. Our Rabbi is a remarkable woman, and recognizing the potential the idea had, and the potential benefit it could return, she saturated that seed with Miracle-Grow! (Okay, to ditch the hokey metaphor, she sent me an email and said, “That sounds amazing, let’s do it in 2 weeks, on Dr. Martin Luther King day.”)
The context behind this sermon was that I saw a small piece of our community that subtly rots away at the soul of our congregation. A small piece that works against our very goals and fiber. And when I realized that it was there, in order to start to heal, or at least acknowledge it was there as to not make it become worse, action needed to be taken. The action I took was to write a Teaching to be given that would educate people about their invisible privilege, in a way they could hear, and not take offense. By giving this speech about myself, I was able to assure people didn’t dis-acknowledge the message due to their own refusal to accept that they have privilege, nor miss the message as they were caught up in guilt over the recognition of their own privilege.
This is shamanism because it is effort put forward, with both subtle and overt overtones to change the community for the betterment of the community.
Writing this was spiritual and quite a challenge on my own path, as well. I was assisted by my two guides (for lack of a better phrase) on how to push this in the right direction. They also encouraged me to accept the aspects of myself that are more challenging to talk about. I have to really address the content of what made to be who I am, and not only address the fears that came out of it, but also, really sit with the experiences that I faced, and feel what they mean. Writing this speech was the core of personal growth and personal healing work. Giving this speech, was the core of shamanism.