My work with clients includes introducing them to the mythic realms, a place long lost to most people in the modern world yet available nonetheless. Connecting to these realms whether it is through meditation, engaging the spirits of nature, entheogens, creative writing, the study of magic, etc. will open one’s awareness to a realm where archetypal intelligences can be found. For those with an open, curious mind, these intelligences can deliver essential assistance that helps us navigate times of challenge.
One of the suggestions I offer when working with a client who is endeavoring to break a chronic pattern, is to engage the help of a resourced archetypal being. I recommend that my client align with an archetype or spirit that carries the qualities they are endeavoring to embody. This could be a made-up archetype that one conjures through a written description of its personality, its values, principles, and accomplishments, or a known archetype from the tarot or mythology, etc.
The idea is to begin deferring to that archetype daily. Affirmations are fine but I have found it far more powerful to have a resourced personality to relate to. Throughout the day as triggering situations come up, one would ask, “What would (for instance) Demeter say to that?” or “How would Demeter handle this?” When we do this we are asking a question, which is the Socratic method of learning. It interrupts the same old go-to in the brain and forces us to consider an entirely different perspective based on the associations with that archetype. One must now ponder how that archetype would handle the given situation and this forces the mind to expand beyond its viewpoint into a broader perspective. The more one defers to it, the more imbued one becomes as its qualities are integrated. Over time that way of thinking becomes second nature and the old, habitual thinking loses its charge. It helps to work with someone familiar with archetypes who can provide encouragement and guidance along the way.
I did this myself six years ago when I was in the height of a dark night of the soul. My guide was White Owl, who came to me on a mushroom journey that rocked my world and changed my life in the most extraordinary ways. For months I struggled to move past the issue and White Owl was my ever-present guide, calling me from my old way of thinking into a whole new perspective. She provided for me a spiritual connection to something larger than myself and she expanded the garden of my mind as I continued to press her for advice through automatic writing and poetry.
In a sense, I became my own medicine. Rather than allow myself to be labeled or pathologized by conventional psychiatry and/or partake of potentially damaging pharmaceuticals, I turned inward to the spirit worlds and culled from the depths of my psyche/soul. I have worked with so many people over the course of these past few years who have experienced connection with the otherworld in ways that have empowered them with the knowing that “the kingdom of heaven is within.” With so many people suffering in so many ways, this seemingly simple offering can provide a path to a whole new way of empowered being. It takes time and a bit of effort and the results are well worth it.
There is far more available to us than our commercial societal construct offers. Nature and the worlds of the unseen remain untapped to a large degree and yet all of it is within our grasp. If we are open to working with the imagination and willing to explore and engage the myriad of archetypes available to us we can alter the course of our lives in the most wondrous of ways. In embodying the archetypal forces we become the medicine that strengthens, heals and informs every layer of our being. This is free, accessible and its potential is infinite.
Slainte mhor agus a h-uile beannachd duibh! (Gaelic)
(Translation: Good health and every good blessing to you)!