Ritual For The Ancestors

On the past weekend, I had been invited over to W’s. He and some others had planned a ritual for the ancestors (Samhain) and he had asked me whether I’d like to join them. Obviously, honoring my ancestors is a bit difficult for me. W was sweet. He gave me lots of opportunities in the weeks before this ritual to talk to him about who I regard as my ancestors, if I need to honor them and so on. It was a very intense preparation for “just” one ritual, but I feel it was worth the effort. Sadly, it brought back so many thoughts about my mother I had thought to be discarded already. I just asked myself where she might be today and if she’s still alive, perhaps married to a nice man she has other children with? Does she even think about my brother and me sometimes? Well, and I wondered whether I wanted to find her or not. John says, some things are better left untouched, but if I want to, he’d help me the best he can. My brother says, he doesn’t mind her at all and just doesn’t want to be bothered in case she might need money or a caretaker or whatever. Of course I miss having a mother, but I never had one, so what exactly could I miss there? I guess, it’s just the imagination running wild.

Back to the ritual. I guess I can’t fight being the son of an insane man and a mother who gave a fuck about me, but W helped me to develop a sense of who my ancestors are, you know, like more figuratively. That would be Lord Shiva, of course, and Yogi Bhajan (founder of Kundalini Yoga), but also John, my Yoga teacher, a therapist I worked with in former years, W himself and some others. It’s quite interesting, but there are more men than women here. Anyway, regarding them as spiritual ancestors helped me to overcome some moments during the ritual that otherwise would have been awkward.

When I arrived at W’s, he blessed me with an incense stick and a short prayer. When he does things like this I always admire how natural these things come to him, while I still feel ashamed to speak freely, especially during a ritual! Just like in the last year, first of all we had dinner. Again M had prepared it for us, stuffed pumpkins, a pie with trout and herbs, couscous with fruit and spices and applesauce with ice cream (not for me). So good!

After M had left, we went to build the altar. This time, I had brought my prayer beads and a small statue of Lord Shiva. W had asked me whether I’d like to call upon the Gods to come to us, but I feel ashamed to do so, and someone else did it. It was very interesting, because he just used gestures to do so, no words at all, but it was very intense to watch. W told us to relax and center and ask our deities to come to us. I could feel Lord Shiva there with me. I guess I’ve improved my ability to sense him, even in small things.

This year, the ritual itself consisted primarily of a reading. Everyone of us should draw three cards from an oracle card set (one after the other) and the woman the cards belong to read them for us. First card: my connection with my ancestors (is this connection strong, what does it lack, what can I do to improve it?). Second card: tasks emerging from this connection (what do I need from my ancestors, what do they need from me, is there anything to be done, a task, they could not fulfill during their lifetime?). Third card: a message from my ancestors.

I was a bit confused about the reading. I guess I would have never come to the idea to ask these things and found it a bit strange to deal with my ancestors that way. But I found that the others were comfortable with it, so I presume that’s because of what my father did and because I don’t have a strong bond with my ancestors.

After the reading, which quite took a while, two men played the drums (djembe) for us. So beautiful!

When I drove home, I saw a badger, and I felt as if he had just waited there for me. I don’t know.

I’m really thankful for the possibility to feast with W. I learn so much from him.

Fire Ritual

What to tell of my weekend? Spent most of Saturday in a fancy dress and correspondent undies, while John thought it might be fun to do the shopping dressed up that way and having lunch in a nice little restaurant. After returning home, I did my chores while he had to work a few hours, only to leave me alone in the evening and attending a men’s club without me. Ugh. Our Sunday was lazy: reading, eating, reading again and playing one game of chess. In the evening, we were invited over to A and M, had dinner together and talked the night away. Needless to point out that the Birdlock stayed on the whole weekend. Today is day 87 of chastity and at the moment I’m quite content.

But today I actually wanted to write about the fire ritual W and I have performed during these very hot days. I guess we couldn’t find a worse period for that 😉 W lives in a rather old house with a sort of “witchy” or at least unkempt garden. His landlord isn’t interested in the garden at all and when W moved there, he told him that he could do whatever he liked with it unless planting hemp LOL So, W has set up a beautiful altar in the backyard and has even built a fireplace. Actually, it’s a piece of soil without plant cover, bordered by old, broken bricks. He even owns an iron frame in case one might want to have a barbecue there, but we did not need that for our ritual. Before we started, we made a little walk towards a small creek in the near of his home, where he jumped into the water and I at least dipped my toes in. Yeah, I can’t fight thoughts of larvae or fish or other animals I really do not need to touch my skin 😦 Anyway, we both focussed on cleaning ourselves (but I still believe he was dirtier when arising from the creek than before…). And apart from creepy animals, I really  liked it at the creek because it was very peaceful there and I was able to make contact to Lord Shiva. I kindly asked him to be with me and stay with me through the ritual. It’s always an enrichment watching W doing such spiritual or ritual things, you know. He’s so experienced and does all with such a self-assuredness that I most of the time still feel like I don’t now anything! To be honest, even if I have good contact to Lord Shiva, I don’t see a reason for certain movements or gestures when washing, for example, and I don’t seem to get rid off my sorrows when tossing water over my left shoulder or so….

When we returned to the garden, we set up the altar. By now, I have a small collection of items related with Lord Shiva, such as my Mala, a small Ghee lamp, a little statue of Lord Shiva, the Lingam and so on, and I placed these things on the altar. In former rituals, we have found out that some of W’s Loas and Lord Shiva go together well and others don’t. Yemaja and Lord Shiva mixed up generate a strange feeling of falling from time and losing grip of our thoughts, which W regards as good, but which I don’t like. On the other hand, when working with Lord Shiva and St. Lazarus, Lord Shiva seems to take over and St. Lazarus to vanish away or lose power. Yeah, sounds a bit crazy, but we really experience this 🙂 So, finally we found some pairings that work, for example Lord Shiva and Mother Mary or Papa Legba and even Lord Shiva and Samedi. For our fire ritual, W wanted to invoke a Serpent Loa, because of her connection to love and fire in which W sees a kind of fiery quality. But to be honest, W’s sophisticated sort of spirituality still remains a mystery to me!

After the altar was set, he lit the fire and kept feeding it until it burned brightly, which was really beautiful as the twilight began to fall. Now we started to again clean ourselves, outside with smoke and fire and inside with a draught of booze. Usually, I never drink alcohol as I tend to get a heartburn, but in rituals I have started to drink a small amount which helps cleaning (according to W) and because it makes me a bit more receptive (but it still gives me a heartburn). We asked our gods and spirits to be with us and W sang a beautiful song. Later he explained to me, this song was taught to him by his Grammy. It is supposed to ask the Serpent Loa and her “servants” and all creatures connected to beauty, love and what I tend to regard as the sweet part of life to enter the ritual and entice them to stay.

When we felt they all and Lord Shiva were with us, we began feeding the fire with symbols W had drawn on paper. I had brought some drawings, too, but I don’t want to tell what they were supposed to symbolize. When feeding the flames, we observed them eating what we gave to them and tried to visualize how they took the energy of our sacrifice and transformed it into something new. As we felt our bodies getting hotter every moment, W said we should visualize how the flames were feeding us with this new, transformed energy to enable us to bring to our lives what we had asked for. We burst out in sweat and my clothes were sticking to by skin, so that I put my shirt off, but being closer to the flames with no protecting shirt made it even hotter. W had started a monotonous singsong and beating a small tambourine and was now sort of dancing and rocking. Well, that’s most times the part of the ritual I do not take part in as I don’t like to dance and still feel ashamed for my body, but this time I at least managed to nod my head and clap my hands which I regarded as courageous.

To be honest, I had completely lost my sense of time, when W eventually became quiet and sat down near the fire, obviously not really attendant. I myself was a bit dizzy, too, and thirsty like hell, but I did not want to interrupt W, so I sat down, too, staring into the flames, as they slowly became smaller. Again, I lost my sense of time. My body felt hardboiled and hot to the core and my mind was wandering. I guess I had a conversation with Lord Shiva about such things as my purpose of life, my relationship to John, my anxious attempts not to believe too much in Lord Shiva himself and so on. I was a bit surprised to feel I was aroused, but of course the Birdlock prevented whatever. I did no longer pay attention to the sweat and the soil that mingled on my skin, I even dropped the thoughts of water and kept just sitting there.

At some point of time, W moved and looked at me. I could see he was back into his body and wanted to see how I was doing. I just nodded. We both got up, pouring another draught of booze into us and into the slowly dying fire (I was surprised to witness the booze did not really burn), thanking our gods and spirits for their attendance and slowly finding back to everyday life. We drank water, which tasted sweet, then sat down by the fire, talking and being silent again.

When the fire had cracked down into a red fervor, W took a piece of black charcoal from the edge and painted symbols on my forehead and chest. He did not explain what they were supposed to mean, but they felt well. When we had calmed down and satisfied our thirst, I collected my stuff and told W goodbye. He wanted to spend the night outside, but I was looking forward taking a long and cold shower at home 🙂 The symbols on my skin survived the shower and stayed on until the next day. I guess this ritual provided my with a lot of fiery energy and inspiration. It was awesome.

Create Destruction

On the weekend, I met W and again we made a ritual for Papa Legba and Lord Shiva. I don’t know why, but these both go together well, I presume. Both seem to have something spare for humans and seem to be willing to teach us, although I’m not really able to get in touch with Legba. Although W is always very generous with explanations about Voodoo and his adaptions, it’s still a bit strange to me. Even more than in Hinduism, the gods of Voodoo appear picky to me. Every gesture matters. I myself have done a lot wrong in connection with Lord Shiva, at least according to the books, but he has never been mad with me because I placed a wrong flower on his altar or pronounced a Sanskrit word in a wrong way. Legba does not seem that uncomplicated to me. He sometimes becomes mad very quickly, and that makes him not appear as stable and “nice” as I’d need it.

At the moment I am working with the destructive incorporation of Lord Shiva, which actually feels a bit weird, because I feel it’s not a “bad” part, but a very worthy thing. If there was not destruction, nothing would ever fade or rot, so that we’d end up in a very overcrowded world with a lot of waste. It’s quite new to me to honour this destructive part as an essential and important part of life. Usually I tend to hold on to things and conditions, even if they have lost their use or meaning long ago, just beause I’m used to them. I tend to hoard, even if I’m a maniac de-clutterist. Uhm, that’s not a contradiction 🙂

Lord Shiva’s destructive incorporation may be seen as Kali. She is honoured as the mother who gives life and takes it again. She is wild and greedy and it took me by surprise that so many people even see a mother in her, but I guess I have certain prejudices about mothers in general, you know, like how they should behave and be. I’m not able to get in touch with Kali on a deeper level, so I tend to leave her something on Lord Shiva’s altar every now and then, but most times it seems she dismisses what I offer.

Some months ago, W advised me to drop my efforts concerning Kali and rather try to find that destructive, eating side of Lord Shiva. He said it might be that by doing so I’d finally find her, too, but I have not managed yet. Anyway, I have tried to get in touch with Lord Shiva’s destructive side, which to me appears as a fourious, golden dancer, which skin is anointed with blood. When he dances, he is all by himself, all absorbed and highly concentrating, but on a kind of spiritual level. He taught me that getting absorbed by things that really matter so oneself, one creates a sort of destruction. I liked that term “create destruction”! That’s because when you’re focussing on one thing, other things escape your attention and develop in a chaotic, creative way by themselves, or fall apart. But from whatever has fallen apart, there might arise new creation, like plants being turned into soil and providing new ground. I know these thoughts are not surprisingly new, but I presume it was the first time I understood this process at heart.

Lord Shiva in his destructive incorporation told me to pay attention to the destruction I create, and I did. I found it everywhere: when eating, cleaning up, showering, even when breathing. It was strange to feel this certain power I have about life and death, because it was the first time in my life that I was aware of destroying others (even bacteria). To be honest, thinking about my destructive side or my power to create destruction made me feel very uncomfortable, because I really do not want to have any mastery over whatever. When I wanted to discuss that with Lord Shiva, he just told me that’s one of my major problems and that I should really take my place, which actually means acception even of this power of destruction. Not easy at all! I guess my concerns are connected with the feeling of helplessness and worthlessness. I’d easier adapt to the thought that I’m not even worth breathing than that I am allowed to destroy the life of a bacterium. I’m best at destroying myself, I think.

That’s the point where Lord Shiva and John somehow mingle. They both try to empower me and help me taking my place, but it feels a bit weird if your God and your husband, who don’t even have contact with each other, work together that well 🙂

The symbol of the destructive incorporation of Lord Shiva as I experience it is the egg or rather the broken/breaking egg. So when W and I made our ritual, I gave a goose egg to Lord Shiva. We left it on the garden altar and while we were sitting on W’s porch, drinking tea, we saw a black cat licking it up. Well, that sent a shiver down by spine.

Task given by Lord Shiva: celebrate destruction. I don’t know what to make out of that.

The Beauty Of Destruction

There are times when Master and I don’t know where to stop. Perhaps he knows still better than I do. In our BDSM-relationship, there exist points of safe return. Sometimes we cross them. I don’t know why exactly. For me, the boundaries can always be stretched. I know that if I have a run, I would accept anything, even the dirtiest, most degrading tortures and degredations. Afterwards, I often feel ashamed and dirty, but during the games, I like it. Even more, I crave it. By the way, of course I do know that calling what we do a game is a sort of avoiding. I pretend that all I let do to myself is done in good fun. That’s dangerous, and if I did not have such a responsible Dom, I guess it already might have come to a bad end for me. Sometimes my self-disgust is that serious that I’d let myself torture and kill. I have already written about my insane dream of making the final gift of love to John: my life. I would. But I hopefully will never come to that point!

Yesterday I went to see W. We had planned to make a ritual for one of his Loas and Lord Shiva by long distance, concerning the more destructive aspects of them. To be honest, that’s Lord Shivas aspect I fear most. I have barely touched it yet. I fear that if I deal with it too often or too intense, it might overwhelm me and lead to a more self-destructive way of living. So, I had an unpleasant feeling when we started, even with W at my side. We had talked about the option to stop the ritual in case of emergency, but to be honest, by all I know about Lord Shiva so far, there is no escape from what he wants to put you through. I really see him like a sort of Dom. He’s loving, but he has this (very attractive) dominant, sadistic side, and if you let him, he puts you through hell, just to lift you up again and leave you happy like never before and quite irritated about your mental health LOL

To honour the destructive side, we had prepared meat as a sacrifice. In my everday life, I see meat as something Master obviously savours, and I’m ok with preparing it for him. But having raw meat in front of me for over two hours and honoring it as a symbol of destruction…uhm, that’s a horse of another colour.

We made a shamanic journey to the deities we worked with to get to know more about their and our own destructive side. No surprise, Lord Shiva showed up clad in a suit, smoking a cigar. Ugh. Can you be sexually attracted by a God? I honestly feel this thought is a sacrilege and try to see it as an expression of my hypersexual thinking, but yes, he was hot. And a kind of demonic, I guess. I don’t want to share what he told and showed me, but it seems I found out more about my destructive side than about his. He provided me with a task: practicing coming back from self-destructive thinking and acting in games, like following a trace back into a loving self-perception, over and over again. I asked him, how I should do it, but he just smiled faintly and replied “practice!”.

Later, when W and I sat together and talked it over, he said in his opinion Lord Shiva just demanded me to be my own guide into and out of misery. Well, yes. That’s the point. I have no idea how to look at myself more lovingly when I have that destructive drive.

When I came home, Master was already there and had a pot of milk pudding bubbling on the oven. We kissed and talked about of how our day had been, while he kept stirring and putting sugar, soy cream and peanut butter into the mixture. It was only when he added another spoonful of sugar to his pudding, when I asked what that was for. “For you, honey” he winked. I wanted to back-talk, but he just smiled faintly. “Just shut up, undress and put that feeding gag into your mouth. I’ll be with ya in a minute” he said in a sweet and dangerous tone that immediately got me aroused and hoping for the worst.

I spent the next two hours bound to our bed and being fed with that sugary, fatty pudding, being slapped hard and relentlessly fucked until Master fed me his jizz for dessert. Later, when I took a shower to get rid off the pudding that got lost in my hair, I kept asking myself, where I could start practicing coming back to a more loving self-perception. So, I went down where John lounged around the couch and came to his lap. Kissing could be a start, I hope.  I really don’t know how to resist destruction if it hurts so good.

Kali

The past ten days have been tempting. Without help from W, S and C I would not have been able to perform that well. I’m still not used to being alone and sitting home alone at night makes me feel weird. I listen to every crack of the beams and wonder if it might be a housebreaker or, even worse, some kind of monster lurching in the dark. I even could not resist looking into the wardrobe before going to bed. That’s embarrassing, I know, being at my age and still behaving like a child.

But that’s not exactly what I wanted to write about. I wanted to share my thoughts about Kali. I guess no one ever can work with Lord Shiva without getting in contact with Kali either. To be honest, in general I don’t have much contact to female goddesses, not even to Lady Parvati, although I recognize her as a shiny, friendly and warm energy at Lord Shiva’s side (but I know Lady Parvati can do other!). Even though I myself have a lot of that “female”, receiving, passive energy (Yin or whatever you want to call it), I’m always drawn to the male energy. And that’s the point where I don’t come to terms with Kali. Although she is female, she sometimes is named as the female or counterpart of Lord Shiva. But to be honest, in their relationship I see Lord Shiva as the more passive and “female” part, as Kali turns out to be quite aggressive and rude, which usually is associated to male energy. I never had to deal with female aggression (let alone some conflicts with my friends S and C, but these conflicts were more verbal than physical), so that confuses me quite a bit. To be honest, I think it’s repellent and nasty. W says, whatever I find abhorrent is worth a closer look, and I really want to, but I can’t see anything. Whenever I try to look closer at these destructive energies of Kali, I just see or feel nothing. She just bewilders me. It’s not even that I fear her or think she should not behave the way she does. It’s only that I don’t come to terms with her.

I tried to make friends with Kali, but she does not seem to want to have friends. Whatever oblation I give to her, it’s wilted or even mildewed within a couple of hours. That only happened once with a piece of cake I gave to Lord Shiva during midsummer! Or it feels like a clear “I don’t want that, put it away!”, if I put something for Kali on the altar. Well, it’s ok not to be friends with someone who obviously does not want it, but I’m confused by such behaviour.

Aspects Of Lord Shiva

My view of Lord Shiva is quite ambiguous, I suppose. On the one hand, he appears to me as a tramp, like someone who has abandoned living by social rules and standards. In this appearance he is drawn to bum around, beg for food and really giving a shit about what others may think of him. On the other hand, he appears as a dominant Alpha male, well-clad and well-behaved. And to be honest, sometimes it scares me how similar he then is to John LOL

For others, there may be uncountable images more of Lord Shiva, and although I have gotten a glimpse of them, I had not much to do with them.

Both aspects of him teach me valuable things, not only about myself, but about life in general. If I should tell in which aspect I find myself, it’d be more in the tramp than in the Alpha male. Of course I have not given up living my society’s rules and I really mind about what others think of me, but I complete fail seeing myself as Alpha.

The tramp aspect of Lord Shiva is an insightful meditation teacher. He is very accepting and does not mind if I defer tasks. He encourages me to enjoy life, especially the little treats that don’t cost any money at all, like sunshine on my face, a nice conversation and so on. He is frugal and makes me remember with how little I can survive or have survived actually. He does not only accept but really recommends the use of drugs to open one’s mind to higher dimensions, although we both have come to the agreement that for me it would be best to keep from using them. He guided me to psychedelic music which’s effects are enough for me and he was glad to see how certain breathing techniques I have learned during Yoga classes have a mild effect of beaming me away, too. To be honest, although I have liked to kill my pain by drinking alcohol in former years, I’ve become a coward concerning “higher” levels of consciousness. It’s ok to drift monitored by John during our games, but I don’t like to lose the connection to my body in other ways!

The tramp aspects tells me not to worry so much about the past or the future and live fully from now to now. I’m taken care of, he keeps telling, and I really wish I could believe him.

The Alpha aspect of Lord Shiva is very pushy and dominant. He tells me to perform and perform brilliant. He does not accept excuses and demands 100% from me, in whatever situation. He keeps emphasizing that I’m able to overcome everything as soon as I’m willing to do all I can to achieve my goal. He demands hard work and keeps pushing when I’m whimpering about. He does not accept excuses for bad behaviour and tells me to be straight up. He’s the one I can rely on on bad days. He makes me getting up, eating and drinking, and working actually. He scorns laziness.

It was quite a surprise to me, when I found out both of these aspects do not judge me for who I am. They just have different ways of making contact with me.

Humility

In the past few days I have carved my way through our wardrobes. Gee, did we really buy all these clothes? Especially John is a kind of fashion addict and really fancies shopping and that’s exactly the story his wardrobe was telling. I have sorted out at least five big bags of clothes! Cleaning up and sorting out is not easy for me. I usually want to use everything until it’s broken and can’t be repaired, but I have to admit that in the past year I’ve gotten a bit more used to John’s way of buying, wearing and finally getting fed up with clothes relatively quick. That makes me feel guilty. I think of all the natural and human ressources that were neccessary to allow me to wear a shirt or a pair of trousers. My bad conscience is even bigger when it comes to shoes as most of my shoes are made on the basis of mineral oil like sneakers. Getting rid of leather shoes is not so easy either as I think of all the animals who died so that I can wear their skin. I am not vegan, but I think of it anyway.

In our hometown, there are a few boxes where one can donate one’s old clothes to, but John and I have heard of the fact that most of the clothes given there are shredded. So I had the idea of giving them to a residence for homeless and needy men. John uttered that it might be a bit overdressed for a homeless to run around in his Armani jumper, but to be honest, one doesn’t give a fuck about the label when it’s cold!

The next thing on my list are our kitchen cabinets and the bathroom.

When I realized how much we own and how much I have veered away from my former life on the street where living out of one rucksack was normal, I felt a bit uncomfortable. Sure I’m glad I left this unhealthy lifestyle behind, but I think it would be bad to forget about the people who still live on the street. So I have decided to get a bit involved into helping them. I want to ask a local organisation whether they can need some help.

When I had decided to do so, I had a very telling shamanic journey. I met Lord Shiva and He appeared as a beggar, telling me that at least we all are beggars and that the lesson that needs to be learnt is HUMILITY. I want to embrace that teaching and bring more humility into my life. I want to sacrifice my work for homeless people or poeple in need to Lord Shiva as a sacrifice to worship Him.