Hello hello the world traveller is back, counting the scarce warm sunny days of the unusual summer coming to an end.
Ok, honestly the real title of this post should be: Do I believe in magic? Sounds paradoxical, ha? I operate magic on a daily basis… But just like with all things colored “human experiences”, with time, could it be that even the magic can wear off? I sometimes wonder if I my love for travel stems from my passion for experiencing and photographing the mother Earth and her ways, her many peoples and their many ways. Or is it that my endlessly restless spirit pushes me to always seek even more magical adventures, running away from home and from the frantic fear that magic can somehow slip away from me. That is if I get too comfortable in my routine, my habitual ways. Even if these pretty much comprise of shamanic practices, which are inherently magical…
After my Thailand trip, and as part of my birthday gift to somebody special, I got to attend a one week shamanic movements workshop with Lujan Matus. Talk about selfish gifts 🙂 . I believe I first learnt about Lujan Matus while researching some information on Carlos Castaneda. But I definitely remember noticing him in the documentary “The Cosmic Giggle”. Apart from the certain allure in his appearance, voice and mystical presence, he conveyed a strong sense of purpose, humor and quiet determination. I knew right there and then that I wanted to meet him but I didn’t feel I needed to. Lujan often says that “we never get what we want, we always get what we need”. So for a while, Lujan was out of picture for me, and I didn’t really seek to know more about him or his work.
Over the years, I have often received messages that I should make my body stronger and focus my personal spiritual practice on body movements more. Except for occasional flirting with tai chi, qigong and capoeira, I somehow lacked discipline to engage my body in any such practice more seriously. That is until I faced a physical exhaustion and complete energy drain due to intense client work at the end of last year. I have since stopped client work and started looking for ways to make my body stronger so it can uphold the energy work I do. This is how Lujan came back into picture for me; remember my birthday gift for somebody special 🙂 – well it turned out I was both the giver and the receiver in the co-shared experience. The week with Lujan was intense and my mind struggled. Surprisingly, my mind struggled more than my body did! Lujan’s spiral and coiling movements that traced over luminous balls and cone shapes around our body felt familiar. Yet at the same time I was frustrated with not being able to pinpoint the chi. I could definitely feel it in my hands, I could feel its ‘texture’ changing with each movement, yet I never felt in the flow. Not once. I was fully aware that my mind was interfering yet I was utterly unable to put my mind off trying to make the link between the way I am used to moving the energy and the movements I was learning from Lujan.
In the very last session, I asked Lujan if he would show us how his practice looks like when he’s not teaching but moving at his own pace. Politely but firmly he refused. Very determined to get the feel of how Lujan operates magic, I wasn’t gonna give up and reframed my question. He still refused… With the red cheeks burning with disappointment that his magic wasn’t gonna reveal itself to me, I immersed myself in repeating the practice with Lujan and the rest of the group one last time. Surprised at how quickly all of the heavy feelings dissipated, I was happy to blow him a kiss goodbye and get ready for our long drive back home. Shortly after leaving the workshop, we got stuck in traffic. I felt unusually calm and accepting of the idea that the prospect of our long drive was getting even longer. Time went by very slowly and when we finally started moving again the sun was almost setting leaving the skies to the beauty of an almost full moon. When in between the sun and the moon, I noticed a very bright cone shape opening in the sky, formed by bright coils of what seemed like strange little cloud formations, covered by a layer of spiraling rainbow color light. This was one of the most stunning sights I have ever seen. And in that moment I realized that chasing magic is a futile task. It is the magic that reveals itself to us when we are ready!
The whole week with Lujan was a humble and gentle reminder that I don’t operate the magic, nor Lujan does. Magic operates on its own. And that no matter which shamanic path we choose to walk, if we walk it with our hearts instead of our minds, we will be able to fulfill the only real task of any Shaman: to be the impeccable sacred witness to the magic operating on our behalf.
“Life can be a process of observing what we are interfering with, rather than interfering with what we are observing.” ― Lujan Matus, Whisperings of the Dragon