Trusting Your Gut as a Shamanic Practice

You may wonder how trusting you gut is a shamanic practice. Let me tell you a story.

About nine weeks ago, I started a new diet, a new way of eating. Instead of eating mostly carbohydrates, some proteins, and some fats — and that’s about all there is to eat, people

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Whale learns to cook broccoli and peppers and garlic and capers

— I changed my percentages so I am now eating more fat than protein, and very few carbs. This plus lots of exercise, works surprisingly well to take off the weight and tone up.

When I embarked on this new way of eating I decided to go strict with it, so, I got a kitchen scale, and used a calorie counting app, mostly to keep track of my “macros,” which is a fancy way of saying how many grams of protein, fats, and carbs I was consuming at each meal, each day, each week. That activity created a certain mindfulness which made up for eating no chocolate candy or pasta. I also weigh myself twice a day, and record my progress in a note book. All of this is to acheive a certain state, a zone, and to stay in that state, once you get there.

All good until the end of week 6, when I embarked on what became a 2,000 mile, 12- day road trip through most of Florida, in my efforts to celebrate the Labor Day weekend with friends, then evacuate family members and button up two dwelling units, and then to evacuate in advance of Hurricane Irma.

I didn’t pack my various weights and measures at the start of my trip, but I did pack a cooler bag. And every so often in my travels, I bought food, cooked it, and repacked my cooler bag, wherever I could. I vowed to stay on this diet for the duration, because I had worked so hard up until this point.

I arrived at a Red Cross Hurricane Shelter in Marianna, Florida on Sunday night, just a few hours before Irma began making land fall on the Florida Keys. I was a very weary traveler, and was grateful to find shelter. Dinner was being served as I arrived: non-beef hot dogs (eg, corn-and-sugar-based) in buns, pretzels, and brownies. I also saw a bowl of chopped up fruit. None of this was on my diet, so I ate hard boiled eggs and cheese from my cooler. Not every meal was like this, but most were. By the second day, my Very Dear Man and I were making jokes about it.  (I want to be sure to emphasize that the rest of the accommodations at this shelter, were comfortable and gracious, as in a-state-of-grace, we were well cared for by the volunteers from the entire town, and we have no complaints about this experience.)

Let’s return to where the shamanic practice kicks in: I had to figure out how much to eat to stay in my zone, and how long I could eat my food in the cooler, before the contents became too warm to eat safely. This happened intuitively. My intuition kicked in, because I had no choice, but also, I trusted myself, and allowed it to kick in. Some of it was due to an imperative I had pushed myself into. I chose to stay on my diet, and I couldn’t eat spoiled food. I needed to get enough calories, and stick to the ratios of proteins, fats, carbs. And it happened.

I’ve also been learning to cook since I started this diet, but that’s a story for another post!

Share your peace with Mother Earth, Father Sky and the Big Waters all around us, for we are all connected.

[Timeline was correct when post was drafted 9/20/2017]

(c) 2017 to present, Whale Maiden for the Earthways Shamanic Path.  All rights reserved.

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Relaxing Into Irma

There comes a certain point in Hurricane Planning, Honorable Shamans and Fellow Pagans everywhere, where you have to just “relax into,” whatever the Impending Hurricane Irma is going to do. That is the moment where you finally stop second- or third- or even fourth-guessing yourself, and say firmly, “I have done all I could, based on everything I know, up until now.” There is an ever-expanding quantify of information about Hurricane Irma out in the internet at this time. You can’t possibly read all of it, and make a decision about things like, whether to stay in your home, or to leave. And then once you make one decision, then the decision tree opens up, and you are making multiple decisions for days and days. “Ok, so, we’ll leave.” “Fine. Where shall we go?” Here, here, here, … it depends on the storm track! “When shall we go?” Who knows. Go early. Go late. It depends. You can read numerous articles with helpful checklists of what to take with you, if you evacuate. (We like to call it, Bugging Out in my neck of the woods. Then you can put your vital essential objects into your Bug Out Bag.) Sometimes it seems like it should be obvious to take warm clothes with you, if you bug out to the north, in fall, for example. But September in Southwest Florida has no resemblance to Fall, and tge week before a Hurrucane it’s been 90 degrees out and himid, so it is totally out of our minds. Or, to take a rain poncho with you, because this is a Hurricane. No matter what else happens in a Hurricane, you can count on it raining. Just about every person I know in Southwest Florida carries an umbrella in their car. But since Hurricanes also bring WIND, you want the poncho. Sooner or later, the Wind and the Rain will find you. Ypur power will go out. You will light candles and wonder if you have enough, or what was it that article said about oxygen? When your flashlight doesn’t work, you may want to resist the urge to think, “gee, i should have bought just one more battery. I should have gone to the store an hour earlier when they had some…” Stop. Breathe. Be right here. If you are by yourself riding the storm out, know that it will be over soon. You did the best you could. If you are with pets and otger friends and family members, take care of each other, comfort each otger, and enjoy the timevyou spend together. If you are in an evacuation shelter, or a Bug Out Chateaux, smile at your fellow weary travelers. Say Please and Thank you. Hold doors open for people. Share limited resources. See if the Volunteers have a spare poncho. And remember, Hurricanes and other big weather events are just Mother Earth’s way of restoring balance, moving the hot and cold masses around. None of us can change this or control it. So we may as well Relax. Share your peace with Mother Earth and Father Sky and the Big Waters all around us. (c) 2017 to present by Whale Maiden for the Earthways Shamanic Path. All rights reserved.