Embodying the Lessons of Elements
Walking along the garden path of my hotel in New Hampshire, I was struck by the beauty and magnificence of nature. The scene was awe inspiring and yet so far removed from my daily life. How is it that we have become so disconnected from our roots? It really is what we choose to focus on that will begin to flourish in our lives. Why not take time in our meditation or spiritual practice to connect with the natural world?
Early in my shamanic training, I learned the practice of calling in the directions. This simple ritual is one I’ve included in my nightly prayer routine. This process will be individual to you and your spiritual beliefs. Over time, I’ve made this practice my own and I encourage you to do the same.
As I light a candle, I ask for the guidance and protection of the loving, compassionate helping spirits and the divine. First, facing the East, I call on the guardians of the East, the Air, and Archangel Raphael. Sometimes I just say a simple prayer for the wisdom and mental clarity that this direction can bring. Other times, I’m drawn to my shamanic rattle to deeply connect with my power animals of the air.
I then make a quarter turn to face the South. Connecting with the direction, the element of Fire, and Archangel Michael. Fire is the element of transformation and change. A burning away of what no longer serves us and an opening up to the life that is trying to make it’s way into our reality. I always think of the Phoenix being consumed by the flames of transformation only to be reborn from the ashes.
The West has a connection to the element of Water and Archangel Gabriel. Water is the element of emotions and love. Many people find they feel renewed at the beach or looking at a waterfall. Connecting with this element is often difficult for me. I’ve spent many years building up walls around my heart to prevent getting hurt. I’ve been on this journey of healing and transformation for over a decade and it’s one I’ll continue to walk for this lifetime. It’s never about being perfect and always about progress. You may find that you have some elements that feel natural to you and others that are more challenging. That’s great news! Now you know which areas and elements to work with to heal.
Turning next to the North, the element of Earth and Archangel Uriel, brings a grounded and serene presence to life. You may find you resonate more deeply with animals, trees, gardening, or even walking barefoot in the grass.
By the end of this exercise you will have made a 360 degree circle, returning to face the East. I also take a moment to connect to Archangel Ariel (below/Earth) and Archangel Haniel (above/Sky). I hope this inspires you to begin your own practice of calling on the medicine of the directions and the elements. May this bring many blessings into your life.