I had quite a bit of interest and many comments on my crow story. Readers shared their own crow stories, and I was asked to write more about my shamanic journeys. I had kept a journal of my journeys which I’ve not been able to locate, but I did find notes about one of my most unusual journeys.
When one starts to journey, it is important to create a sacred space by calling in the seven arrows which guard each entrance of the sacred space. The energies are cleansed and balanced through this rite and the use of smudging with sage in the process. The seven arrows are north, south, east, west, earth, sky, and heart. It is a powerful Native American ritual.
During the introduction to shamanic journeying, an individual is led through a process of creating a sacred space within the journey. In many cases, the destination is reached through a hole in the earth — it can be a physical hole such as a cave or a hole in a tree trunk, or a more abstract type of hole as a puddle of water. My hole was a cave opening which I discovered near a creek in my hometown. This route led me to my sacred space which was a small rainforest pool with a waterfall and lush foliage and flowers surrounding the pool. I would enter this destination through double doors and the waterfall, which was my “marker.”
We were instructed to spend time in our destination and become familiar and comfortable with the sourroundings. Afterwards we were instructed to return via the same route but visualize walking through fire at the end of the tunnel before exiting. This would assure that our entire being was being cleansed as we passed through.
After establishing the basics of journeying and becoming familiar with traveling to and from our destination, we were encouraged to allow a journey to “happen.” The journey is not a planned event, rather it is a heightened sense of relaxation where we “allow” the journey to happen and embrace the intent one expresses before initiating a journey.
On the journey depicted in my montage, I expressed the intent to find the meaning of the five points of a starfish in a sand dollar center which had appeared in a previous journey.
I entered my tunnel and went through the doors to my sacred place, coming through the waterfall into the tropical rainforest pool. Lumen, the cougar (my guardian) joined me immediately. Often I would be able to look into Lumen’s eyes and see things or symbols. One day I asked him why I saw things in his eyes, and he replied “Portent . . . portent . . . portent.”
I retrieved the sand dollar from the pool where I had left it in a previous journey. Lumen and I proceeded into the jungle where we met an ape whose name was Myst. I told Myst that I wanted to discover the meaning of the remaining points of the starfish in the sand dollar. I had already learned that three of the points signified truth, trust, and love.
Myst directed Lumen and me to a path. We walked down the path, and the crow flew in to join us. The crow was a frequent companion and identified himself as my power animal. I asked the crow what he was called, and he told me his name was Abbo.
Abbo, Lumen, and I continued to walk down the path, and eventually we came to a clearing. In the clearing was a labyrinth which was in the shape of a starfish. We entered the labyrinth. Abbo was on my shoulder, and Lumen walked beside me. As we journeyed through the labyrinth, the final two meanings were revealed — honor and respect.
All three of us sat in the center of the labyrinth when we reached it, reflecting upon the five meanings — truth, trust, love, honor, and peace. Abbo took a feather from his wing and gave it to me.
We exited the labyrinth and took the path back to the rainforest pool. We met Myst, and I told him that my mission had been successful. Abbo left us, but Lumen accompanied me to the pool. We parted there, and I took the black feather with me through the fire and back to the earthly present.