The Preparations

What requires serious preparation but no expectations? It could be a kōan, couldn’t it? Once I had accepted the invitation to take part in the Solar Disc activation ceremony at Lake Titicaca in Peru, I knew that I would need to prepare for the trip and I also knew that it was foolish to have expectations about what would happen on the trip. 

How did I plan to prepare? There would be physical preparations. We would be staying near Puno, Peru at an elevation of close to 12,500 ft. and would be a thousand feet higher than that when we activated the Solar Disc on Amantani Island. I lived in Colorado and had climbed fourteeners—what we Coloradans affectionately call our fourteen thousand foot mountains. I had serious respect for elevation. I knew I needed to be in shape for the trip. Fortunately, I already did a bit of cardio and lifted weights at the gym. I was clear that I needed to continue that regimen. 

Near the Aramu Muru Doorway

As important, there would be mental, emotional, and spiritual preparations. I knew, instinctively, that anyone called to participate in this important ceremony would likely have the challenge of their unintegrated “stuff” coming up while at the gathering. I would be no exception. Had I done shadow work? Had I explored my weaknesses and what pushed my buttons? Had I worked on my interior landscape and exterior expression? Yes. Repeatedly. In fact, as an ongoing part of my life for many years. But I wasn’t foolish enough to think that I had no toxins eating away at my internal environment and I continued to be as tenacious as Erin Brockovich on PG&E when it came to my own internal clearing. Well, okay, maybe I cut myself a little more slack that Erin did PG&E. But I still tripped on my own ego often enough to know that I could use a little more grace and balance on the inside. 

In short, not only was I no Ascended Master (the obvious proof being that I was enfleshed in a human body), but any poll of my friends would reveal remarkably consistent reports of my displaying at least half of the Seven Deadly Sins over the course of our relationship. If I was to stay in service and not spiral down into my own undigested stuff, I needed to attend to my mental, emotional, and spiritual health over the next six months or so. 

Yes, I committed to the trip more than six months before the event. I was that sure I needed to be there. And I was grateful to have the time to prepare. So I continued my cardio and weight resistance training, got enough sleep, mostly ate well, meditated, did various forms of clearing (including hucha clearing), challenged my thinking, and caught myself when my emotions were dredging up something important from the past. Lest you envision me living the life of a monk or, worse, being in some New Age, self-deluded fantasy that I was on the fast track to nirvana, I assure you neither was the case. I meditated except when I didn’t and when I did meditate, it was for thirty minutes if I was lucky, not three hours. When I caught myself spiraling down into dysfunctional thinking or emotions, it was, as often as not, after I had already been rolling around in that muck for at least a little while or, worse, after I’d already made an ass out of myself. I was just a pilgrim going down the road. 

But I was a pilgrim going down the road (still am) and was (am) nothing if not persistent. So I stuck with it. 

In early January, I was pulled, as if by the force of gravity, to work with the Weather Spirits. I didn’t just commune with the essences of Cold, Rain, and Wind, I communed with the Grandfather Cold who was wrapping my own home in sub-zero temperatures right then, the Brother Rain impacting parts of the country as I connected with him in meditation, and the Grandmother Wind who rattled my windows or ripped apart some distant landscape in that moment. Communing with the Weather Spirits was as natural for me as having a heartfelt discussion with anyone in human form.

And why not? I had been fascinated with the weather my entire life. Perhaps it was because my mother had grown up on a farm. Farmers study the weather like stockbrokers study tickertape. Perhaps it was also because the natural world had been, for my father, the equivalent of a cathedral. An appreciation for the weather was in my DNA. And I grew to understand the Weather Spirits profoundly during these meditations with them. I came to understand that while it is foolhardy to think we can control or manipulate the weather (either through scientific means or metaphysical ones), it is wise to approach the Weather Spirits with respect and a genuine desire for understanding. I came to love them all.    

I was not only drawn to the weather, I was pulled to the Forces of Nature, in general. I spoke with Pachamama. I met with the Apu of Longs Peak (who came to me in a beautiful feminine form), and I sought to understand the primal power of Earthquake. I had no idea why I was suddenly compelled to commune with the Weather Spirits and Forces of Nature, but when the Haiti earthquake hit in January, followed by the catastrophic flooding of Peru, my work with nature seemed to make sense as just part of my preparation for the trip. 

We had been scheduled to make a side trip to Machu Picchu and the Sacred Valley. Those plans were washed away in the floods. I was happy to have harbored no real expectations about the trip. And I continued to prepare.

Copyright 2010 by Melanie Mulhall

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10 Responses to “The Preparations”

  1. Herbert Says:

    Thank you as always Melanie as you share with us your ‘experiences’ so we may be more open and continue to grow and create ourselves. I especially appreciated the ‘weather spirits’ discussion as I was not aware of some of the tags you used, but have certainly shared the communion with them. Looking forward to more of your adventures.

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  2. Melanie Mulhall Says:

    Herbert (aka Jay),

    Thank you so much for your comment. I seldom talk about Weather Spirits and the like outside of shamanic circles because many people think of these things as hoakum. But perhaps I should.

    Melanie

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  3. Laurel Kallenbach Says:

    Thanks for reminding us that any spiritual journey or pilgrimage requires emotional and spiritual preparation. In our hurry-up society, that’s easy to lose sight of. Most of us embark upon a journey expecting that it’s what happens on the trip that counts–when many times it’s how we approach that journey that makes the difference.

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  4. sibylle Says:

    I think it’s best to go into many things prepared, but without expectations. I find that sometimes it’s hard to live up to expectations, and sometimes our expectations make us afraid. My students learning to ski sometimes have unrealistic expectations – either they expect to progress more quickly than possible, or they are afraid that it will be too difficult.

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    • Melanie Mulhall Says:

      Sibylle,

      Yes, I think you’re right. Preparing but being without expectations applies to more than taking a trip. It may just be a good way to live life, in general.

      Thanks for your comment!

      Melanie

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  5. cwaboulder Says:

    What a trip. Can’t imagine how that changed you, will change you . . . in many on-going ways.

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    • Melanie Mulhall Says:

      Jerrie,

      Yes, it promised to be a remarkable trip and, as you will see in future posts, it certainly was. Stay tuned. And, yes, that trip has changed me.

      Thanks for the comment.

      Melanie

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  6. Gail Storey Says:

    I very much appreciate your example of preparing for so soulful a journey on many levels–not just the physical, emotional, and spiritual, but attuning yourself to something even deeper. No wonder it welcomes you!

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