What Bear Teaches Us: Bear Medicine
I've talked about a topics having to do with working with your crystal skull in other posts. Now I'd like to mention another aspect of spiritual awareness that goes hand in hand with what you may learn while working with your skull - or while involved in any other spiritual practice.
It is a key understanding that we must make sure that we take the time to integrate the things that we learn into our lives - instead of rushing headlong into the next experience, and the next and the next..."
There is little wisdom in rushing from one thing to another with no time to understand what just happened.
The process of slowing down long enough to process and integrate our experiences has been called "Bear Medicine" and there are some important spiritual lessons we can learn from Bear.
Bear is said to store the teachings of dreams until the dreamer “wakes up” to him or herself. Some indigenous people have called this place of inner-knowing, the 'Dream Lodge' or Dream Cave.
Bear has often been called the "Keeper of the Dream Lodge" or the “Keeper of the Dream time.”
You may wish to ask Bear to help you to remember your dreams and begin to use them for your spiritual growth.
Bear often marks the places on our spiritual journey where we begin to awaken to the awareness that we are all Beings of Light and that death is a compelling illusion that is woven by our physical reality. As the Bear retreats to hibernate each year, she is 'dead' to the outside world. Come Spring, she awakens to go out into the world once again, gathering new experiences.
In order to become more aware, one must take the time to process the information and experiences that one gathers in the world. This is an essential part of 'Bear Medicine' and all spiritual growth.
Bear teaches us to go out into the world and gather experiences and collect all available information. Then she takes it back to her quiet place and carefully studies what she has gathered. Bear reaches her own informed decision, based on what the facts of her experiences, and what her studies have shown her. However, Bear keeps her mind open, because when she ventures into the world again, her experiences and gatherings may give her information that will alter her beliefs, yet again.
Bear is not one to make quick decisions or to force anyone else into doing things. Bear is compassionate, yet detached. Bear has no expectations of how things should be. The Bear accepts life and the other Beings around her as they are.
Quiet time in the cave shows us what must be shed or released, so that we may move forward and grow. Bear shows us what has been holding us back in our attempts to realize our dreams. These may be things from our past or in our present. Recognizing what we have yet to work through may be a painful insight and long process, but it is necessary for spiritual and emotional health.
Bear reminds us that we should experience life fully - both the pain and the pleasure - and take the time to process and use the lessons we have been given. What have you learned from your pain?
What have you learned from your pleasures?
Savor your life experiences and remember that you will open as you are meant to open. You cannot force anything open.
Bear loves her home and protects the young and helpless. Bear may seem to be rather slow, but can move like lightning when she or her loved ones are threatened.
Bear also shows one how to provide – and accept – healing. Healing of self, and Healing of others. One must begin their own process of healing in order to assist others in healing.
Bear is in our lives to teach by example. She will help you as you gather your experiences in a more conscious manner - and then begin to process and integrate them.
**I am certain that there are many interesting and in depth articles to be found elsewhere on the web, written about this concept of Bear Medicine. What I share here is what my Guide and an Elder of the Ojibwe people taught me. I haven't read much that others have written, so I am not sure how similar it will be. This is my personal understanding and interpretation of what Bear Medicine has meant to me.
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