Today’s exercises from Runic John were exploring shapeshifting. He recommended trying to become a plant. I figured I have a lot of houseplants so I’ll start there. I picked out a plant after getting myself into a working trance. The plant agreed to work with me. So off I went.
Being already in trance I started to focus on my hamr. Once I was in touch with it I moved it over to the plant. I folded my hamr around the plant like a hug. I could feel the plant sending off energy into my hamr. My physical body also became aware of the energies of the plant. I kept my focus on my hamr as best I could. Soon enough I was the plant.
I could feel the energy of the plant coming in and out of the leaves. I could sense the roots looking for moisture. I felt myself straining towards the light at the window.
Suddenly I felt the roots growing through the pot and down deeper into the Earth. I sensed the connection of my energy with that of the Earth. I felt a cycle occurring between the Earth and the power of the moisture. I could feel the fire of burning energy in the leaves. I sensed the air going in and out of my leaves. I was part of a huge cosmic loop of energy feeding itself on the bigger energy of the universe. I felt myself expanding with this feeling. I was a cog in the machine. But a vital cog.
I have never felt so connected. I was experiencing first hand the immensity of the worlds around me. It felt bigger than I had consciously imagined.
After basking in that immense feeling for what seemed like a lifetime my hamr started to return to my body. I was once again aware of my own physical body. Soon I was back. Only ten minutes had passed.
Whew! The sheer magnitude of what I had just felt left me with a feeling of humility. I am so small. But at the same time vital to the whole. I can’t appropriately convey it in words. It’s huge. And knowing this is a good place to be as I continue on this path.
The past couple of months I’ve been experiencing a somewhat disconcerting phenomenon. I have found myself slipping in and out of states of consciousness. Without trying to.
For example I’ll be wide awake in ordinary consciousness and suddenly I will start reliving a dream I’ve had. Not like remembering. Reliving. I will be in the dream. A part of me remains in ordinary consciousness when this occurs. But my primary focus will be on the dream. It happens at all times of the day so it’s not that I am tired and drifting. No I’ll be wide awake and just suddenly slip.
Or sometimes I’ll be doing something totally ordinary like the dishes and I will feel the slip and suddenly everything is runes. The water is laguz, the mugs are perthro, the light will be dagaz and so on.
These events last anywhere from just a second to several minutes. And I always feel energized after an experience. But I confess it’s a bit disorienting.
I admit it’s been easier to go into trance voluntarily. And my trance work has been deeper and lasts longer.
I asked my spiritual teacher about this. He said it’s nothing to be worried about. It proves my progress. So I guess something good is happening. But it still kinda freaks me out! I guess I’ll just have to get used to it. It’s part of the new norm in my progress as a vitki.
I’m working my way through the wonderful book The Book of Seidr by Runic John. I can’t recommend this book enough for those interested in studying seidr. It’s terrific. Anyway I am working on the exercises outlined in the book. Right now I am working on my hamr. The hamr is the subtle force that shapes the body. It is kinda like an aura. It’s an energy field that is the same shape as your body. Think of it as an astral body. One that you use both in journeying through the nine realms and creating your physical body.
My hamr is kinda purplish pink. That’s how it appears to me in trance. It follows the shape of my body. It hugs my body pretty closely in shape and form. Mine extends out about six inches or so. And I’ve been working on strengthening it. My MS causes some issues that need addressing.
I’ve been focusing on making the color of my hamr more vivid and bright. More radiant. Stronger in force. I achieve this while in trance by taking energy from the middle of the Earth to boost my own energy. I make sure I’m solidly grounded always before I trance work. So I can just tap into all the energy of the Earth for a little extra help. I know I’m doing it correctly when I feel my legs tingling. I can actually feel myself getting an energy infusion.
As the hamr is a field that creates the physical body I felt this was a valid way to work.
Lately after having done these exercises for a week or so I can feel a difference. My legs feel stronger. I’m able to walk better. Mostly I also just feel better overall.
Next I’ll work with more journey related aspects of my hamr. Explore the out of body experiences associated with this field. For now I’m just thrilled that the strengthening seems to be working on my legs. Without lifting weights!
There’s a question I haven’t really considered much. I don’t believe for me it was a choice. I didn’t wake up one day saying I want to become a vitki. All my life experiences just seemed to lead me to this path. The only decision I really made was whether or not to continue the direction I was pointed in. I did make a conscious choice to dedicate myself to this journey. But I guess I feel as if I never really had a choice. It was just in my wyrd to do this. So here I am.
I first came across the word vitki in my runic studies 20 some years ago. Back then the term just meant to me someone who was dedicated to the study and use of runes. That was the path I followed for several years. Merely calling myself a vitki meant I studied the runes.
It was only about five years ago when I was given the gift of full-time dedication to my esoteric studies that my eyes started to open to something bigger. As I had been a Wiccan several years before I had some exposure to magic and the more energy related aspects of the multiverse. But I never thought of seriously applying those concepts to my life. Now I started seriously exploring the concepts of rune magic. Dealing with bindrunes, magical energy sendings — these became regular parts of my practice. I continued on that limited way for several years.
Then about a year ago when I decided I was definitely out of whack and needed some feminine energies in my life that I came to seidr. Studying seidr has brought all new energies to me. Now I find myself relying more and more on intuition. Even in my rune studies I now trust my intuition to guide me. This has been a real revelation for me. Getting past my fear of letting go to that side of my Self. Letting my feminine side drive more often. That’s where I currently stand. Learning to really trust my feminine side will know what to do. Especially magically.
So now a vitki for me now is much more than simply studying the runes. It’s a journey down the path of all esoteric studies — runes, seidr, magical applications. Being a vitki is growing larger and larger for me. And that’s where my path is headed right now. In another five years I’m sure my definition will be even broader. That’s the wonder of following the path as it opens itself to you — you’re never quite sure what lies ahead. And that’s great for me!
I had a dream where Freyja came to me and let me shapeshift with her falcon cloak. I was intrigued by the possibilities of this new aspect of my practice. So I decided to do a seidr session to see what I could find out about this.
So I got myself into a trance and asked for a visit from Freyja. Soon enough she came. I told her I wanted to learn about shapeshifting. So she summoned three animals — a hawk, a rabbit and a snake. She asked me to pick an animal to become. So. I chose rabbit because I figured soft and furry and cute. I like that. And the other two choices seemed too severe for me. So I told her rabbit. So gave me a look and said “Are you sure?” And I told her I was sure. She just shrugged her shoulders and threw a rabbit pelt on the ground. “Put that on” she said.
So I put the pelt on my head. Instantly I was a rabbit. I started eating a dandelion. Everything was nice and calm. Then suddenly the snake slithers up and bites me. And I feel the pain. One second after that the hawk flies over and grabs me. And takes off.
Now I’m flying through the air in this hawk’s talons. I can feel the pain where the hawk has grabbed me. I’m thinking about how this is not a good turn of events! We get to a nest and the hawk drops me in. And starts to eat me.
I’m frantically trying to get away. But I realize that even if I manage to get away from the hawk I’m high up in a tree. I would fall and die that way. So I’m dead no matter what. Great!
As I feel the pain of being eaten I have decided to give myself over to my wyrd. Not much else I can do. It’s a good day to die I guess.
The hawk finishes devouring me. It flies away. But wait! On the ground is a hunter. He spies the hawk and draws his bow and aims and shoots. Inside the belly of the hawk I feel the arrow finding its spot. The hawk drops to the ground dead.
The hunter slices the belly of the hawk open. And suddenly I am whole and fine and scramble out. I scamper off. I’m alive and I’m free! But now my fur is a different color. Before the ordeal I was a white rabbit. Now I’m black. But I could care less. I’m free!
In the air in front of me I see a blazing red Berkano. I come out of trance suddenly. It’s over.
Whew! Intense to say the least. Especially the pain. Too much pain. If this is what shapeshifting means maybe it’s not for me! More likely I think this was a one time ordeal Freyja decided I needed to go through. Maybe to show I’m serious about this whole thing. Maybe to make me more aware. I’m not sure.
It sure gives me much to think about and meditate on.
Beware what you do! Sometimes it really hurts!