Back in the later winter…
….3 years back I went and journeyed deep into the lush green Elder junglescapes of Costa Rica and Nicaragua.
It was there that I met Vinod, a local Shaman who reignited my truest form of self deep within. It was he who helped me fetch Artew as well. Artew was a power animal ally of mine and he meant a great deal to me. I had always known Padfoot, a black panther spirit I regularly bonded with in my imagination since childhood. Back then I believed he was a large black dog, his more masculine and almost goofy energy and size had my little girl self thinking he had been a dog and thus I named him Padfoot after the grim Sirius character from Harry Potter, even though by the time those novels released I already knew very well he was a panther, not a dog or a grim at all. Padfoot’s presence in my life was also validated by Jack, a dear old mentor, Druid Wizard friend of mine. However, both Padfoot, my meeting of Jack and his wizardly ways were tales for a different time.
Today I’d like to tell you about Artew. I was deep in the underworld, that may seem obvious, since that is the very place one travels to when wishing to fetch themselves a power animal ally and though rusty in my shamanic practices, having spent most of my 20’s denying my gifts, I was still as cocky as ever. “I’ve been able to see my power animal Black Panther since I was young” I stated so matter-of-factly the morning of our second day in the Shamanic Healing Workshop I had travelled 3 days on foot, ferry, taxi cab and local bus but I was finally there in Ometepeh and I came to fetch myself the greatest power animal ally of all. I came for a Dragon. “I’m going to fetch myself a black dragon!” I exclaimed almost boastfully to the others, “I know how to journey and that’s what I think I really need to help me out on my journey” Vinod just smiled and said “One receives the ally they need not that which the mind believes it wants” and with that he told us to lie down as he opened the four directions, sealed a sacred circle and I heard the drum beat begin.
Where was I?
Oh yes, right, so I was in the underworld. We had already ventured into out minds eye and travelled by dream state into a forest, thats’ where one always finds the hole to the underworld. It can change depending on where you’d like to enter, but everyone could access their own secret, unique entrance. It took a skilled shaman to travel with others and guide them through the realms. My journey skills weren’t there at that point yet but my aptitude for such traditions and my natural passion and curiosity made me a prized student that attracted mentorships in abundance along my personal quest. I wanted to learn, become skillful and push harder.
That’s why when I was walking in my imagination along the dark cold black rocks of the underworld and saw the large dragon appear, I was surprised when I was met with aggression from it. My smile washed off my face instantly as it did not wish to join my party and was apparently quite angry about my advancement towards it. I stepped back and lifted my arms, “please, I am here to request your aide” I said as it’s eye pierced through the dim lit caverns of the underworlds floor. It slowly stepped out into the light, it was massively huge, dark black like Padfoot and it’s eyes were yellow and gleamy, soft smoke billowed from it’s nose as it puffed up slowly inhaling as I realized that I was going to be torched alive if I didn’t move. I fled backwards just as flames billowed out onto the slate rocks in front of me, barely missing my toes, which were barefoot as I held my arm across my face to shield me from the blinding light.
As the flames fell back and I slowly lowered my arm from blocking my vision and it was there that I saw him. There, in the middle of the ashes, it was a deer; his antlers were bare but looked different than the bucks at home I had seen. “A deer?!” I asked aloud. “A deer?!!” how lame I thought to myself. As Vinod has mention one does not simply choose their allies but fetches or inherits them. I decided to call forth to the animal and as he slowly but powerfully approached me he lowered his head as if inviting me to grab him in service. He was more handsome than I thought a deer could be, though I didn’t realize it at this time, there in the low lit, smoke filled underworld air, his antlers were actually branches and his origin was Celtic in nature. He was rooted in unconditional love and nature and he was part Tree.
It seems fitting now, but I assure you at the time, he felt odd, misplaced and completely not an Ally I’d have chosen for myself, if left to me own devices. However I accepted his invitation and rode on him as we returned to the jungle treetop mat I had been laying on as we were called back to the ceremonial space in the jungle by Vinod’s words and drumming.
Present day Artew was playing an important part in my quest here because he was attached to my Divine Counterpart, The Enchanted Forest and my Heart Chakra. He was a well established character in the late Story Series and he also has shifted into a Doe and Fawn, Faun and also has allowed me to embody him as an Antlered Goddess with his energy balancing my own masculinity. Ever since my kundalini explosion I didn’t connect to him as an Guide… I was too shaken up about his attachment to the “Twin Flame” which now, felt like the worst possible thing ever in my story. I didn’t want something that had me feeling like I needed something outside of myself to feel whole and complete. Artew just reminded me of that desire to be in Partnership, so I pushed him away.
However, now he is back in my experience….so are the Tree Elders.
Things in my Story are changing and unfolding and I just have to accept that I’m just this separated spec that’s part of something so much bigger than we could ever fathom. Life is whatever you make it and I wanted to keep going. I was excited to explore more about the actual Celtic and Druid traditions and practices and winter and Artew had me studying and slowly becoming less of a day dreamer and more of an apprentice. I felt like after seeing my subconsciousness on the surface that I wanted to respect the knowledge that had already been written a lot more than I had been. Carl Jung especially seemed to be so dang triggering, as everything I wish I had already fucking known…
….but life isn’t lived like that. I can’t spend time feeling embarrassed or judging my past versions of The Self when I am creating life as I type these very words. I just wanted to be a better character inside the story of life…. and I happened to be involved in writing Nature’s Divine Faerytale. That was not only an honour, but pure magic and I wanted my life to start to reflect that more and more. Artew and his noble leadership would help…
….beside, he was so fluid and lucid now….
…he was magic and I was honoured to have his masculinity to lean into for my inner Doe to feel safe to rise in her power this Spring.