(Kelly Eckert author of "What's Your Spirit Animal?" is leading a ritual with Spider + Snake and some other not loved by the masses spirit animals. Here is what Kelly wrote in her newsletter.) I've told you about my severe arachnophobia before and how I got rid of it by accepting spirit animal Spider as one of my personal power animals. Now, when I see a spider, I talk to it—in the same sweet voice I use to talk to a kitten. I've held a tarantula. I wear a spider ring and earrings. I bought a spider pillow for the living room. I freakin' love spiders.
And yet just last night I had a dream in which I was running away from a big-ass dog-sized spider! Well, I wasn't running. I don't run. I was speed-walking very quickly away from it.
What the hell.
Sometimes our dreams are just dreams and don't portend any profound meaning. This was not one of those. This dream definitely had layers of meaning for me.
You know the American Indian parable about the two wolves living inside all of us? One is "good," the other "evil." The one that survives and grows stronger is the one we feed.
My spider dream was a bit of a twist on that. It started out with my feeding a small spider a crumb. I tossed other crumbs onto the web, and bigger and bigger spiders emerged to eat the crumbs. Finally, this dog-sized spider came out and headed straight for me. Crumbs were not enough for it.
A power that great could not survive on mere crumbs.
What a gift that message was for me. My spider gifts need to be fed, and I was giving them crumbs.
Here are some questions for you:
- What powers have you been afraid to own?
- What are the crumbs you've been feeding them?
- What are you afraid will happen if you let them get stronger?
- What do they really need from you to attain their full strength?
- Are you willing to face, embrace, and feed those powers?
This Wednesday (10/21) I'm leading a ritual at the 2015 Brouhaha Festival called "I Don't Like Spiders and Snakes." We'll take a shamanic journey to face the power we've been afraid to fully own. We'll start to embrace all the gifts that power brings. We'll explore how we've kept that power small by feeding it crumbs—acting as if we're owning the power when we're really just toying with it. And we'll learn what we need to do to feed that power to help it grow to full strength. Purchase your ticket here:
This can be scary stuff. A lot of people don't like the word "power." It elicits images of authoritarianism, greed, cruelty, lack of compassion, violence, conflict.
All of that is a misuse of power. All of that is power *over*. The kind of power we will be working with in Wednesday's ritual is power *with*—with our gifts, our Selves, our Souls, our desires, our needs, and our place in the web of life with people around us.