It took a vision quest for me to finally get it. For so much of my life, I ran away from myself, my gifts, my connection to Mother Earth, and my connection to the spiritual realms. I finally found true joy when I gave myself permission to actually recognize that I was running and chose to plant my feet firmly in the ground long enough to find peace with the nature of life itself.
It is difficult to know your true relationship with nature or notice your spiritual medicine gifts when you are moving so fast. It is difficult to hear your ancestors or notice the help you are receiving from the other realms when you are absorbed in your physical needs. Ceremony allows you to pause and focus on your spiritual self long enough to notice who you really are—to see your own divine nature within the great web of life, and receive the help that is always there.
In a world where we see and hear about devastation at the hands of Mother Earth occurring all around the globe, it can be easy to forget she is also our source of safety. She can also be our protector.
Years ago, an ice storm in the middle of the night cracked the branches of a tree under which I had parked my little trailer. Every branch broke and fell to the ground except the one directly over the trailer I was sleeping in. That branch stood strong, as if the tree had put all its energy into that single branch in order to protect me.
I recently saw evidence of similar event on a walk with my husband. A large tree fell, but somehow managed to fall doing as little damage as possible to surrounding trees. I’ve attached the picture I asked my husband to take. Notice, the tree that fell had split early in its growth to create a fork. That fork fell elegantly around another tree. A few branches were ripped off, but the tree was in tact.
In Vision Quests and in Life I Saw How Nature Helped Me
My vision quests inspired me to live differently. Gifts of protection and harmony with the Mother Earth starting occurring when I chose to live in conscious relationship with her. I blessed her with my medicine songs, did ceremony to honor her life force, and lived in nature with awareness. Then she began to show me her greater nature. I heard her heart song, watched her animals bless our sacred spaces, and yes, saw how even the trees protect me.
I suspect that most of creation, except the majority of humans, are connected to and aware of this natural state of harmony. My Cherokee ancestors call this state of relationship, The Natural. Imagine how much easier life could be if this state of consciousness was awake, and regularly stimulated within you?
You Can Experience the Gifts of Vision Quest, Whether You Choose to Quest or Be in a Vision Quest Community
Since my vision quests and apprenticeship, I’ve been privileged to facilitate a ceremonial week for questers and spiritual seekers for over 17 years, and have helped hundreds of people reawaken and remember their natural relationship with Mother Earth and the Divine. Some come to quest themselves. Some come to support the questers and retreat into nature. You can watch and listen to some of their personal stories at our Vision Quest page at New Dream Foundation. We are accepting registrations for this year’s Vision Quest Retreat.
All of our ceremonies at Vision Quest come from matriarchal tradition, or deepen our understanding of the Sacred Feminine and our most harmonious relationship to Mother Earth. The ceremonies have a way of bringing life into focus so that we can discover how to live in this natural state in greater ease.
I have discovered that anything that is working well becomes apparent, as those blessings multiply exponentially. Whatever has not been working also becomes apparent and seeks to be brought into its proper alignment, right then and there, during ceremony.
We live so far removed from Mother Earth most of the time, that true relationship with her becomes obscured by buildings and roads. To experience our lives in their greatest harmony, we must consciously reconnect with her. At Vision Quest, Mother Earth teaches us about our deeper connection to the Divine as she brings life into perspective—lovingly holding space for each of us to adjust—to shift our consciousness enough to enjoy her and live with greater ease.