Step Into Infinity with One Spirit Medicine
Heal Your Life Blog
Step Into Infinity with One Spirit MedicineStrategies for coping with spiritual crises
I think all of us who walk a spiritual path have our faith and trust challenged at some point or another. Many of us have hit moments where our usual sense of the universe being a beneficent place dims and we feel out of connection with our own divinity. If this experience is really intense or prolonged it might become a dark night of the soul driving us to dive deeply within ourselves to reconnect or surrender to the divine – hopefully emerging renewed and enriched by this deep immersion into unknowingness and uncertainty.
Louise Hay and Robert Holden explore this question of the beneficent universe in their inspiring new book, Life Loves You. Robert asks the question: How would our lives be different if we really believed this? Even Louise would say that there have been moments in her life where she wasn’t absolutely sure that life really did love her, but she observes that actively affirming this belief in those moments of fear and doubt is far better than choosing to believe that the opposite reality is true. She certainly is the living embodiment of this principle in action.
Sometimes it’s a health crisis that throws us into uncertainty. People who have lived their lives holistically, eaten consciously, consulted great people skilled in the healing arts and been committed to strong spiritual practices can suddenly have their faith shaken when faced with a life-threatening health diagnosis. Should they go the traditional route being advocated by their doctors or choose holistic methods to restore themselves to wellness? Making the right decisions in these moments is so important. There cannot be a right or wrong choice – this is such an individual matter.
For psychologist, medical anthropologist and shaman Alberto Villoldo this choice was an extremely intense one. He was in Mexico delivering a keynote talk and found that without any warning he was unable to walk more than a few steps without collapsing. Friends suggested he was exhausted, but he knew that something was terribly wrong. Before leaving his home in Miami for the trip, he had had a huge range of tests by medical experts. He called them and received the devastating news that during his 30 years of research in Indonesia, Africa and South America he had picked up a long list of nasty micro-organisms, including four varieties of parasites, a host of toxic bacteria and assorted worms. His heart and liver were close to collapse and the doctors said that his brain was riddled with parasites. The doctors advised him to seek the best possible care available and immediately put his name on a liver transplant list. But where, he wondered, was he going to get a new brain?
The shamans welcomed him lovingly – they had known him for years and he felt welcomed by Mother Earth as he lay down on the earth and pressed his body close to her. That night in an ayahuasca ceremony in the jungle, Alberto was too weak to drink the sacred vine, but his wife drank for them both and he received healing throughout the night. This extraordinary ceremony was the beginning of a healing journey without any promise of a cure, but Villoldo knew that whether or not he lived, he would be healed.