Still Looking for That Magic Potion? Check Out This Instant Fix!
posted by Roman Hanis on April 2nd, 2018
Just kidding! I know it’s a terrible bait and switch, but we need to get serious here. Instantaneous magic potions like that are unrealistic and anyone who tells you otherwise should be approached with caution. You’ll often see marketers selling spiritual wares on the internet, offering enticing incentives “Valued at $$$, but free when ordering this special product that makes you even more special!” and other content they’ll insinuate can do just about anything to get better ratings.
Do you ever get a sense that true happiness (the kind in childhood fairy tales with the “ever *after” ending), is right around the corner, you’re just unsure which one?
But wait, what if there was a treasure map to this boundless, everlasting happiness? There is! And it’s yours for just $15.99! And you’ll even get this free indigenous smudging kit! (Sorry, I couldn’t help it.) But seriously, it does seem we’re in luck, because you and I aren’t the only ones who’ve explored the possibility of timeless joy under all conditions and circumstances.
There are millennia of living wisdom passed from generation to generation from all over the planet, though guarded better than any treasure, locked safely away, deep in subconscious cellular memory. An innate wisdom of such pure innocence that without pragmatic ancestral guidance, we lock it up in ourselves from the sharp edges of the harsh existence and persistent marketing schemes.
A quick fix to unlock happiness
Does that mean there’s no instant fix to life’s troubles? Maybe Ayahuasca or some other magical potion can change your life in a lasting way?
I thought so when first introduced to the South American indigenous traditions in 2001. What I discovered is that the awareness cultivated in these traditions throughout life is more essential than occasional exotic experiences. Rather than creating a fragile identity around mind-blowing episodes, a more sober approach forges divine love in the pits of hell. The quality of applying the relevant lessons stemming from open-hearted awareness to the mundane by far outmatches the quantity of otherworldly events.
Although I’ve had many ‘enlightening’ moments, when push comes to shove, it’s a sober realization of greater meaning and consistently persevering attitude that makes all the difference. Applying this attitude is the downfall of capricious personalities which always seek the easy way out, while simultaneously it’s the greatest fulfillment of heart-centered awareness that defines who I truly am.
The wise ancestors designed a holistic approach that can’t be cherry picked – an elaborate introduction into the nature of existence that allows insightful resolution of the mind’s conditioned trickery. Theory and practice must go hand-in-hand. One without the other is doomed to failure. Rather than checking out the new fantasy-R-us fanfare, taking a level-headed approach to all circumstances with pure intention, beginner’s mind and friends sincerely facing themselves, allows real resolution of life’s calamities.
But if you’re still looking for a weekend getaway, a nice spiritual theme park to forget the daily commotion and lack of purpose in your life, I have just the right product for you… How does a lifetime of persistence through any and all challenges sound?
Humanity’s collective wake-up call
Ancestral shamanic ceremonies involving sacred entheogenic potions that almost nobody knew about when I started out are very popular nowadays. There’s something deeply enthralling about a dimension ungoverned by the logical mind. Experiencing a greater whole, enraptured by the divine union of direct contact with the raw forces of nature may be an intuitive longing of the masses. As more people become dissatisfied with superficial consumerist values and deceptive distractions, they hear the wake-up call expressed through society’s many alarming issues.
While everyone has different ideas what the pursuit of happiness entails, the underlying state itself is universal. People seek happiness in money, possessions, dependency on loved ones or substances, but recognizing that none of them bring lasting happiness allows for a return to innocence beyond all the fake glitter. For it’s an indescribable, yet deeply familiar blissful wholeness, nurture and safety imprinted in the organism by Nature’s unconditional love in the Mother’s womb that keeps calling us back to the source.
Many individuals throughout human history have navigated life’s overwhelming maze of difficulties, consciously returning to a primordial state of fearless love. These beacons of humanity lit-up the devotion of many across generations to deliver this timeless state-of-being to the doorway of this time and heart. A wholehearted ancestral invitation to awaken into the infinite abundance of Mother Nature.
Beyond our diverse stories and personalities, there’s a pervasive mystery each organism longs to be re-initiated into – a completely conscious evolutionary journey back to the source. A surge of interest in these beyond-personal states may seem a novelty, but living wisdom traditions facilitating rites of passage into such states are rooted in times immemorial, long before written history.
The treasure map cannot be for sale since it’s an evolutionary blueprint of embodied higher consciousness via living and humane relationships with self and others developed over millennia. Living, breathing role-models of a fully blossomed human potential are essential to help face the turmoil in today’s world. Yet without that relationship of experiential trust and vital pointing-out instructions, these traditions can become just another carousel side attraction in the psychedelic Disneyland of consumerist mentality.
Maintaining the essence amidst the challenges
One of the main challenges I’ve encountered and seen others struggle with is merging everyday life with the experiences these traditions provide. ”Mystical” events interpreted too literally or superstitiously create an isolating escapist fantasy that spiritual consumers lineup for. Some even try to collage all kinds of ideologies, disciplines and techniques, hopping from one to another, accumulating conceptual knowledge to bolster the ego, while never going deep enough with one tradition to get any real work done.
With a very faint background in facing one’s own shortcomings and deceptive coping mechanisms, infantile tendencies justify the illusion, making spiritual bypasses even out of ancestral wisdom… However, going deep enough with one tradition to reach it’s embodied essence allows for the recognition of that essence in other traditions. A diverse array of pragmatic modalities can then be synergistically applied to the root cause of misery.
Medicine can also be poison when ignorantly utilized. Shaman wars with enchanted darts and proliferation of black magic in the Amazon are clear examples how powerful tools go haywire within the contents of immature minds.
The current mindset of globalization also greatly affects people within indigenous societies. To many, ancestral wisdom is seen separate and inapplicable to the changing values of ‘modern life’. In addition to the rainforest’s inherent dangers, such as ferocious animals and other forces of nature, there’s now the value added bonus of political / corporate corruption and a need to survive in a consumerist matrix.
Living wisdom traditions can only remain alive through actively applying awakened heart presence to life’s current challenges. The traditions themselves are vessels while the embodied wisdom of natural awakened states is the essence contained within. Without the living essence, any tradition, no matter how beautiful, is little more than a museum attraction. The archaic values within these ancestral blueprints are actually symbolic representations of thresholds within collective evolution. While the imagery is adapted from generation to generation, the profound human values and energetic essence remain both relevant and unalterable.
‘Forget gurus, worship plants instead’ is another popular sentiment that propagates eccentric arrogance. In the face of adversity, a tried and true relationship with the essence provides a living example of confronting real challenges with sober awareness. Such an example witnessed in a dear friend can be enough to inspire the same in one’s own life circumstances. Thus, evolutionary friendships in recognition of the greater truth connect humanity across space, time, race, gender, and borders.
In today’s world of information superhighway barrages, it’s hard to discern the authentic lineages and practitioners. For true happiness, one must make more time to get to know people, and less time to shop around for great deals that keep one hooked to the carrot hanging on a stick.
Remembering the language of the intelligent heart
My main teachers were the lineage holders who became my true friends – wishing me well while sharing what was useful for them. They called this process a journey of remembrance. Remembering the language of nature, language of dreams, energy, emotions, feelings. The language of the ancestors that speaks through symbols, metaphors and poetic purpose. The intricate language of the intelligent heart.
Only with that solid foundation can the tools become skillful means effective in daily life. After all, how can even the most powerful tools be effective if I don’t know what they’re for?
A transcendental experience that’s skillfully shared may catalyze the evolution necessary for current civilization to overcome the fear-based survival mode. Few traditions still maintain an uninterrupted transmission of embodied wisdom. These lineages sifted through the sands of time to awaken truth as a state beyond concepts. They are nothing without people who honor them today in a realistic way.
The realized innermost truth of who each individual is beyond fancy ad labels, keeps being available only through the willingness of real people in each generation who cultivate the natural wisdom practically, and in a way that’s relevant to the modern times, rather than a recreational indulgence or a ritual museum relic.
If you’re called to explore the integral approach that I and my cohorts at Paititi Institute are engaged in, then nothing inspires me more than to share this evolutionary path with people who have a sincere aspiration to support each other to keep on rippling the meaning of existence.