by Dr. Alberto Villoldo: Over the past several months we’ve explored journeying, soul retrieval, and finding destiny…
I encourage you to go back over this material and practice the exercises until you fully understand, and are able to freely journey into the imaginal world and heal yourself.
Our destiny is always available to us. As we recognize and embrace our timeless self, we will be able to grow new bodies and new destinies, which will serve our entire species. In other words, as we heal, the world will heal; as we change, the world will change. No longer guided by the force of karma, humankind will begin to break free from what keeps us bound to strife and conflict, and we’ll finally grow into Homo luminous.
We can make the journey toward our destiny over the course of many years (or many lifetimes), or we can travel through sacred territories and mythical landscapes in a much shorter time by using the process of journeying.
For the Laika, journeying isn’t an exercise in the imagination—it’s very real. This is difficult for those in the West to understand because we’re so driven by precepts and rules. We distinguish between what obeys a set of predictable rules (such as the laws of physics), and what’s imaginal. The Laika believe that everything is imaginal. Whatever we perceive is a projection of our inner world, and the world perfectly mirrors the condition of our soul. What we think of as the world of our imagination, the seers of old consider as real and tangible as our very physical world.
As you’ve learned in past blog posts, to access the imaginal world, we need to enter into special states of consciousness that are very different from our ordinary daily consciousness. These are the states that have been cultivated by mystics, monks, saints, and yogis―the “quiet mind” of the Laika and the Buddhas. This heightened awareness gives us access to our god-brain, so called because it is active during mystical and spiritual experiences. Also known as the prefrontal cortex, this structure is shared in its full expression with whales and dolphins, even though the hardware is present in all the higher mammals. It’s located in our foreheads above our eyebrows. (Neanderthals have been known as “low brows” because they lacked this brain unit.)
Buddhist monks who enter into the state of samadhi (or the experience of oneness with all life) display neural activity almost exclusively in this region of the brain; meditation has also been found to trigger dramatic changes in this region’s electrical activity. The god-brain transcends individuality, seeking oneness with everything, and it regulates the aggressive and fearful impulses of the limbic brain. For the god-brain, time is fluid, running backward and forward as in dreams.
The god-brain understands that consciousness cannot die, and it allows us to live free from fear. Brilliant scientists, artists, shamans, and mystics have accessed its capabilities to produce their finest work. After returning from one such trance journey in 1797, the poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge jotted down one of his greatest poems, “Kubla Khan.” Mozart was reputed to have been able to hear an entire symphony playing inside his head, and he had to work furiously to transcribe the notes as fast as he heard them.
At this point in history, our species is in need of the next great opportunity offered by our prefrontal cortex/god-brain which will allow us to entertain the ancient notion of a web of life in which all creatures, and even inanimate matter, are interconnected as part of a field of information and energy. Many individuals believe that human society is actually standing on the brink of this momentous leap in consciousness.
The shaman understands that evolution happens within generations. We have the opportunity to participate in evolution by taking that quantum leap into who we are becoming. We can become homo luminous in our lifetime. This, then, is our greatest task: to take that quantum leap individually, because as we do it for ourselves, we do it for the entire planet. Each and every one of us, when we choose truth, when we choose light, when we choose a feminine theology of cooperation and sustainability, we are transforming the world.