The Gift of White Buffalo
By Shiela Baker
Are you ready to journey with me? A journey may seem like an individual adventure however; we always journey for each other. There is much insight to be gained for you from my journeys. Journeying is a powerful therapeutic tool. You’ll have an opportunity to travel into the timeless, pathless land of Shamanic reality. I hope it will bring you healing and enjoyment!
In this journey I am sitting in my canoe. On the left my male ancestor the Bear is lying on a pyre so he sends Ghost Bear rather than coming himself. On my right Grandmother gracefully comes down the slope of the hill by her tree. Hawk is in the bow in front and behind me is the crystal formation with quarts in the middle and two amethysts on either side. I set my intention “Show me the medicine of White Buffalo.” I use all my senses while journeying so not to miss anything. There is a monotonous drumbeat as I journey.
We travel slowly down the river; there is no need to hurry. Going over a waterfall I am launched into the air. Ahead I see a cloud that reminds me of a White Buffalo. He appears to be smiling. Before I know it I am entering his body through the place between his eyes.
I travel down the spine and emerge just above his rump. We are moving at an incredible speed, galloping above the clouds. Turning quickly, I see that all the other clouds are really white buffalo too. I am in a herd of white buffalo! I feel honored, tiny me on the butt of a buffalo. Two buffalo are sitting on thrones which amuses me but I try not to giggle. They are holding a communal. The talk is about how to guide the two leggeds and whether it is worth it. I feel like a fly on the wall. There are grumblings and laudings and much back and forth about mankind’s virtues, if any!
One very old buffalo stands and shakes his fur, is tinged with gray and as he shakes, some fur falls off. He has a special medicine for man. It comes from his fur and is like faerie dust. As he shakes, the dust falls down to earth and people think it is snowing but this is his magic.
The people quiet, noticing the beauty of the “snow” and become calm. They begin to be considerate of one another and gather to problem solve. The buffalo also quiet and watch to see man’s virtues rather than the shortcomings. The old buffalo is exhausted. Two young ones come to care for him. His tongue hangs out and I fear for his life, however, I am assured that he will continue on. He has given much so that I can see his medicine.
I notice that I am now at the head of my buffalo caressing him and giving great thanks for this journey. As the journey ends I bow low to each of the ancestors and Hawk, thanking them for carrying me into the Otherworld. Aho.
Understanding Journeys and Making This Journey Useful
All Shamanic journeys have lessons, healing and actions to be taken. Using five Archetypes helps me interpret journeys. By focusing on these five aspects we have a framework for interpreting and using this important information.
The Visionary is the person who goes on the journey.
The Warrior takes action in the journey to accomplish the intention.
The Teacher pays attention to the lessons of the journey.
The Healer listens for the healing in the journey.
The Magician brings the healing and lessons back to ordinary reality.
Then takes actions based on insights gained from the journey.
As the Visionary: I use all my senses and my body to be aware in the journey.
In the role of the Warrior: I enter into the body of the buffalo to experience life as Buffalo.
In the role of the Teacher: I am in the body of the buffalo when we gallop and I notice how all the clouds are like me. We are all white buffalo.
In the role of the Healer: I am aware that we are all interconnected, what the old buffalo does affects life on earth.
As the Magician: I find a way to move differently, I can run, sit quietly when snow falls and be a witness to the fate of man.
Each person experiencing a journey gains a unique perspective and insight. Let’s look at the metaphors in this journey.
In the story of White Buffalo Calf Woman two braves chose different ways to acknowledge their vision of the woman who became the buffalo who became the woman who became the buffalo. She brought gifts to the people and has long been revered as a Sage. As two leggeds we have the ability to make choices depending upon how we see what is in front of us. How will you see? Remember this story when you see the snow.
What do you find relevant for your life in this journey? Where in your life do you make choices depending upon your limited vision?
Journey often and with friends!
Look for Shiela in January at Vision Quest in Everett on Thursdays. Her workshop in Shamanism will feature lessons from Practical Shamanism, the book & CD set which is now available.
Shiela has been teaching her special method of journeying to hundreds of seekers. She is a Licensed Mental Health Professional, an R.N. and holds a Master’s Degree in Dance/Movement Therapy. 206-903-9404 for more!