On February 29th, Leap day, I jumped–off the grid for two weeks.
Backpacking several miles into my small little mountain town’s neighboring national forest, I came upon a bare, south-facing ridge to make my home for the duration of my fasting and vision questing period.
Fortunately, there was an abundance of spring run-off. I was able to take advantage of pure, flowing mountain water without the need for filtration.
Over the next three days, I rationed a delicious baked sweet potato and a mixture of spring salad mix, spinach and arugula–absent any seasonings or dressings. Surprisingly, I found myself able to eat less, having fewer worldly distractions and more time in a quiet, peaceful and serene environment—surrounded by nature.
Despite cold temperatures and nearly daily rain and snow showers, I persevered while enjoying each fleeting moment and scattered days of spring sunshine and fresh, distilled air. Occupying my mornings and evenings tending to a fire and days spent resting, reading, writing and gathering wood to keep dry from the elements.
The simple things.
A flood of memories arose on a regular basis, as my body began its descent into self-preservation mode and immense healing. Quite surprisingly, I was able to stave off headaches using an acupressure method that came in handy at every onset of head or neck tension.
As you might guess, many of my thoughts danced around the delight of food and even some recipes long forgotten. At times my imagination ran wild and livid over even the most mundane and distasteful of food groups.
The cellular memory that had remained dormant within me, was now actively attempting to persuade my senses and indulgences. Interestingly enough, my cravings lay to the wayside for the most part but on a couple days. I’m unsure that if I had been near food, I just might have caved.
Strange things take place when one commits to allowing space for their body to rest.
New revelations about life, its meaning and where we belong in it slowly begins to surface. Tempting me beyond the depths of my own fears and self-imposed limitations, my shadow self emerged.
Really, for the first time I believe I truly embraced this other half of myself that I’ve so long repressed, denied, attempted to forget or have starved of its deserving attention.
Insights into my life, my past and the future began to stream forth and I often found myself perched atop a small, flat rock next to a cozy fire writing; pondering; dreaming. Memories, both good and bad re-visited, reminding me of those I love despite the toils, heartache and pain we’d surfed through in order to grow. Breaking down and releasing tears of remorse, forgiveness and triumph—I found myself letting go of imaginary judgments and needless persecution of others.
Inexplicable happiness shone through along with outright sobbing and at times irritability or anger. Distractions were far, yet not so distant that I still found myself wondering and longing for society’s grasp—the bosom of our modern day world.
Have we wandered so far from the natural world that we’ve forgotten how intrinsically connected to it we are?
Once a person abandons their attachment to the internet, electricity, fine dining, running water or hot showers, our soul body begins to strip away at our cheaply woven facade and self-important identities. We become less in a way so that we can become more; wholesome.
There were many bitter-cold nights, shivering for hours while praying for the rise of my eternal Sun God to pierce through the early-spring blanket of dark, shadowy clouds—casting His warm, inviting glow upon me. Cheering to the heavens when I could bask in the glory of sunshine and lay out on the bare earth–sunning, resting and purging delightfully; bare feet in direct contact with the Earth’s bountiful energy.
Each day, I performed Reiki on my body (along my chakras) and continually reminded myself that despite any perceptible discomfort or soreness, healing takes place first, on the ethereal plane. Our higher self or auric field—some call it the morpho-genetic field and my relationship to it began to blossom.
I found myself able to easily change beliefs (through muscle-testing) and rid what no longer serves by merely communicating to my divine source.
Answers to long-forgotten questions, pursuits and desires bloomed.
New-found purpose, drive and direction fueled my stamina to push through this transformational, yet grieving process. The courage to commit to my dreams as an entrepreneur spilled forth. Glory, from sacrificing so many long-spent hours, days, months and years began to converge and a plan to strive towards these passions illumined me.
Excitement coursed through my blood and the confidence to radically alter my life in profound ways became abundantly clear. “Stop turning into fear”, I reassured myself. No amount of change is possible unless we impose new behavioral patterns and stay the course.
One day, a revelation arrived—that spirit simply wants me to be happy pursuing what I love; not necessarily what’s practical. A dicey history that I no longer wish to entertain began to shed from my being.
So here I am, a changed man one might say. I am with a pronounced love affair for my unique inventiveness, creativity and deeply churning desire to elude what’s held me captive.
I am now to set forth on a journey towards realizing my potentials.
“Ready. Set. Go.”
Author: Thayne Ulschmid
Editor: Sara Kärpänen
Photo: .christoph.G. / Flickr
Featured photo: starrypix / Flickr