Devil’s Club – Oplopanax horridus
Shameeah Experiences 28/09/2013
The themes that developed clearly in this Shameeah are very much associated with warrior energy: SAFETY, URGENCY, RESISTANCE, FAMILY, PROTECTION OF FAMILY, TRADITIONS, ANCESTORS, SACRIFICE and FAILURE.
Prominent colors were red and black.
Let me take you in the experience through a few quotes that express what happened.
“I feel relaxed and safe as if in a family.”
“I am embedded in an old community, in an old tradition.”
The theme of safety developed into a great desire to protect: protect the family, protect the community.
A sense of being connected to ancestors was also strong.
“I hear my dad’s laughter and my grandfather’s chuckle” – (both are deceased)
another person had a dream of a deceased aunt;
“I feel the connection to the ones that came before me and responsibility to the ones coming after me”.
It could be the connection to one’s own family ancestors. For others it was connection to the land; or to a certain spiritual path; secret society; animal helpers; or connection to teachers, traditions, rituals, soul family, brotherhood/sisterhood societies.
A sense of urgency was often present:
something bad is going to happen, I’ve got to get going”
“it’s time to wake up, get things done”
“Gotta be ready to act”.
Wherever pain showed up, it had the qualities of sharp, stinging, stabbing.
Irritability and Anger
was expressed, for example:
“I was totally annoyed, … … stop poking me!”
There also was a lot of tension and not openly expressed irritability as I found out in conversations after the workshop.
This got more intense and turned into images of fighting.
“I saw two animals fighting.”
“I want to roar and snarl and be frightfully noisy. I have a new skin, an invisible protective layer covering my whole body.”
“I am an old man coming back from a long time of war.”
War includes the topics of failure and sacrifice.
“A relative sacrificed himself for the safety of the group. Would I give my life so easily?”
“Do I give my life and sacrifice myself?”
“I feel like I am walking through doom. I accept doom.”
“I hear a song that invites me to go where the ancestors are.”
“I have failed. Now I need help from the family, the spirit world, from somewhere.”
““I feel lost and I don’t know where I am.”
“I felt fatigue, loneliness, doom, and the need to carry on one step after the other.”
In the higher C-levels it was about the courage to look inwards, to go through inner pain and struggle.
“I have to go back to where the pain came from. That’s where the solution is. The pain helps me to focus and tells me where I need to go.”
“When I no longer fear then I can walk past doom and rebuild.”
“As I let down my walls of protection, my spirit expands”.
In C4 we usually find the “solution”. It is where the transformation usually happens. Not here so. There still was irritability, grief, fear and all these low vibrating energies that tell clearly that we have not yet reached the transformation. For myself actually it was the most painful part of the whole ceremony. I was in deep sadness, felt totally disempowered and alone.
So we went for a C5 with the result that it was not any better. Here we see that we can do the mechanics of a C5 level but that says nothing about if we have reached the energetic vibration of a C5. It is a higher level of consciousness that needs to be reached. One participant received the message: “That is all I have to share today. Come again in 40 days.” The weekend was over, I was very discontented because I did not know what was going on. I did not understand.
The next day I had a serious conversation with the Devil’s Club. I was lying on the ground under a DC plant looking upwards to its thorny stems and thorny leaves. I meditated, no insight came.
– “Devil’s Club let me understand what that’s about! What is going on here?” I called out ardently.
“In that moment I had a very, very clear understanding: every thorn, every spike is an expression. So I need to go into full expression of what is inside myself in order to move on. I cannot hide a thing here, everything has to be expressed no matter how uncomfortable it is. The expression of thorns is painful for the one giving and for the one receiving, but here in the Devil’s Club there’s only merciless expression of truth, no holding back, no being nice. Everything has to be expressed.
– “The next day I had a long conversation with my partner about everything that had not been expressed in our relationship, and I had to express all the things that I was afraid of, and all the things that I felt uncomfortable with, all the things I’d rather kept hidden. Everything! And when everything was on the table there was peace. And then we went into C5 again. The result was perfect.”
What I understood now was that the Devil’s Club teaches about the inward warrior, the spiritual warrior. It taught me about full self-expression, without making it look nice, without holding back anything. It’s just the sharp and painful truth as it is; the thorny truth. I felt like naked in those thorns.
– “There was a huge energetic step from the previous level. I feel a calm, and upright. I can look at whatever it is that is coming, whatever it is that is waiting for me. Whether it is victory or failure, here I am.”
– “Sri Aurobindo once said: ‘Be what you truly are: a God in your victory; a God in your defeat.’ I am willing to stand for who I am; calm and joyful in my victory; calm, sad but with dignity in my defeat. You will not overlook me because I will not hide. You will not chase me because I will not run. I will, and I can do what needs to be done, and say what needs to be said. I see your needles, each one an expression, uncomfortable, sharp, clear and to the point. There is sovereignty in that, a dignity, which is calm and unassuming. I feel like a warrior now; I might have opponents, but not enemies. I might fight for something or somebody, but not against someone. There’s a great respect for myself. I see your needles even underneath your leaves. No pastel-colored, wanna-believe-it’s-true things; no, it’s strong colors, clear shapes, clear words. How many people would not need to be sick if they would express their truth clearly? The question is: Is it your truth? Is it the right time and place to speak? So do it. Dare to be uncomfortable. Allow others to even run into your needles; it’s not about being nice, its about being true.”
– “I feel very, very grateful that you gave me the courage to express all my fears, doubts, worries, that you pushed me not to wait for another time but to do it right now. What a gorgeous night, what a beautiful day followed. I do not hide. I do not back down; not from my fears, not from embarrassment or shame. I can express them for everyone to see and they shrink like snowflakes in the sun, like a shadow on which you cast light. Lies exposed cannot survive. You are my friend now, Devil’s Club. You hurt me, you tested me. You wanted to see if I turn away, if I run or hide. I did not. I was ashamed, afraid, confused, but I did not hide it. This was your test in C4; you cut, you stung me and I shrank. All my fears and insecurities came up; this was your most sacred gift for a warrior, facing myself and deal with it. It was not about fighting an enemy; it was facing my own demons, unarmed, unprotected, naked. I felt your needles. Thank you for that warrior’s gift. Your teaching for me was, “Do not distract yourself with enemies; face yourself.””
Dr. Roland H. Guenther, PhD