Monday, August 13, 2012

Bison and Wolf Gates

From Thursday, August 9, 2012

I just returned from a Family Reunion in Southern Alberta with my Mother's side of the family. I rarely see these people or talk to them unless I go to these renions. Some I can connect with when we do meet, but mostly it is just a pleasant time spent in the country with semi-strangers. But for some reason, I felt like I had to go this year.

Maybe it was because the location was close and also because this year the BISON gate is the COLLECTIVE GATE... meaning that everyone should be going through this gate. So what does it mean to go through a gate. Well I thought going to the reunion would help me understand this, seeing as Bison is about family, unity and wholeness. It also extends out to nation and country.

This was only my third time going to a family reunion. been having them for a lot longer, and hold them every four years. But what I noticed this time was that they do the exact same thing at every reunion.  They play golf, horseshoes and crib. They eat meals together and sit around the fire at night, drinking, singing and playing guitars. They have an art auction and talent show to raise money for the next reunion. It is all so predictable. It seems that people like the familiarity of the same thing over and over again.I guess it makes it easier for the organizers. But I am someone who likes to be creative and enjoys the surprise element of trying new things.

For me, the highlight was seeing my Aunt who is 90 years old and not long for this earth. Tears welled up inside me when I saw her. I felt my Mom who died in 2008. It was as if  Mom was waiting for Aunt B to pass over, to greet her on the other side. I sat by Aunt B whenever possible, but she didn't seem to want to talk much. I knew she wasn't well, they took her out of the hospital to bring her because she wanted to be there.

I did enjoy the time there... the lake and trees, sun and warm breezes. But the drinking and the noisy parties at night spoiled it for me. The campers next to me were a group of teenage boys who drank beer and smoked pot all day and night.

The next day, I approached the camp owner and he said he would talk to them. That night, at exactly midnight, they went quiet! Yay! But then there were the other campers.... also loud party people on the other side of me...They were a bit further away and with my ear plugs in, I was able to sleep.

But at 3 am, I was awakened by loud yelling and singing. Who the heck was that, I wondered. They sure were having fun at the expense of other campers. Why is it that I am always the one who has to do something about these things? I know others were pissed off because  they talked about it earlier that day.

I couldn't get back to sleep, so I got up to investigate, only to find out it was some of the young people from our family reunion. They were far enough away on the other side of a field so I can imagine how loud it was to those nearby. I reprimanded them, telling them that they should be more considerate of others. They quieted down, but I had trouble sleeping after that. I felt tormented by it all.

Why am I here, I wondered.... I'm not really connecting with anyone. I don't think the way they do, I don't play golf, horseshoes or crib, I don't drink or smoke. I don't even eat the same foods as they do.... I kept waiting for a circle to form where we could sit around and listen to the Elders tell stories about our grandparents and their lives. It never happened. It seems that everyone just wanted to hang out and have a good time. I have nothing against that and was even enjoying myself, with the beautiful weather and natural setting. But I could do that anywhere, with anyone. It was more like being at an outdoor bar with all the partying.

It seems that no one really wanted to connect, except to say hi, how are you... then move on... I finally found myself not caring either. I was in observation mode and not wanting to initiate anything or anyone at this time. I felt that I had something to learn.

One of my young nieces came up to me as I stood there on the edge of the gathering area the next day and said, "I would love to put the tables and chairs in a circle". She must have been reading my mind. It never happened, but it was good to see someone else was seeing the fragmentation and scattered energies. Our family is Metis, part Aboriginal, part French, Irish, Scottish with some English thrown in. I know that some of my cousins practice sacred ceremonies such as sweatlodges, pipe ceremonies, pow wow dances, etc... but it seems that today people put things into categories. Prayers and sacredness go over there and family gatherings go over here... why is sacredness not part of our everyday life?

Most people were hanging around with those they already knew.I though of our ancestors, how they would come together in summer with other tribes, to barter, exchange goods and look for mates, to listen to the stories of the Elders so they could pass down the teachings. They had a stronger sense of the importance of carrying on the family stories and traditions - and I don't mean just the games... I mean the things they needed to know to survive and have a sense of history and continuance.  We are so disconnected from our ancestral lineage, our origins. 

If I was to organize a family reunion, I would make sure that the Elders were put in the spotlight and their stories were heard and recorded. I would do a sharing circle so we could get to really know one another and what we are living. It would give us a sense of who we are, who we share our DNA or bloodline with, where we come from, what our ancestral patterns are, what we need to heal and learn as a family generation after generation, so that the future generations could have better lives. Instead I see the alcoholism, the indifference, fragmentation and apathy being passed down.

This Blue Moon, the Bison Gate is supposed to be the Collective gate. That means everyone should be passing this gate. But if you look at how dysfunctional families are today, it looks like very few, if anyone, will be pass this gate. Does anyone have a functional, unified family these days? You can't pass any of the gates unless you are balanced and functional in them.

I left the reunion before it ended. I had enough of the partying and drinking. I know who my real family is. I realized that I needed this experience to appreciate who I want to share my life with. As I packed up the camp, I did a ritual to release my ties to my blood family. I drove away feeling freer than I have for a long time. Tears came as I felt the love I had for my Shamanic family, my teachers and Spirit sisters and brothers.

I may not be going through the Bison gate, but the Wolf gate is calling to me loud and clear!

 Wolf is about path and purpose, and about belonging to a Pack. It's about knowing your place in the pack - are you an Alpha or Omega wolf?

The Wolf gate is showing me that it is time to leave behind the western concept of family. I need to renew my commitment to my path and purpose, to my Shamanic community and both the blessing and burden of my role as Elder and teacher of the Sacred Circle ways.

There are challenges and tests in any role or gate. Wolves work in pairs and in packs. They fight amongst themselves to establish their territory and position in the hierarchy. Yet they work together to hunt and nourish the entire pack and to defend against intruders. Family can't choose the people they live with, but community can! It's more about who shares the same beliefs and values as you do.

But all the gates are so much more than we know or can imagine at this time with our limited perceptions. All the ancient prophecies are leading up to this time on Mother Earth as being the end of an era and the beginning of something totally different and unknown, even to the ancient prophets. Just read the Revelations in the bible if you want to see the Christian version of the times we live in now.

The BLUE MOON is just weeks away. This is the crucial turning point for 2012, not December 21st as most people think. This is the first time in human history that ALL the gates are wide open, but that doesn't mean that they all are functional.  Some gates will be more popular than others. Some gates maybe no one will cross.

We who have Lisa and Gerard as Master Dreamer Teachers are blessed to have access to this information. It is hard to comprehend the scope of it all, or to explain it to others.

What I can say is that after the Blue Moon and the rituals we do, after we pass or don't pass our chosen gates, none of us will be the same every again. Even those who don't have this knowledge will be passing gates, but they might have a harder time of it. It is just so much better to do it consciously and collectively with our Shamanic community and our master dreamers guiding us.

Ho Mitakuye Oyasin


Lili said...

Thank You for sharing your story. I could picture the scene as you wrote.

Is there a way of passing through the bison gate if you are not with your blood family during the Blue Moon?

My parents will look after my children. Al will look after himself during this time.

There has been a lot of things that have happened during the build up to the Blue Moon and I could have easily said that the journey to Canada would have to be done another time but I know how special this opportunity is and to be with our teachers and community, during this time, is more important.

My family are loved and cared for and any teachings I learn whilst I am away from them are those things I treasure most as I know I CAN SHARE WITH THEM.


MaryRose Lessoway said...

The ritual that you will be doing at the Blue Moon gathering will be for your family - you don't have to be with them physically