by Anyaa McAndrew and Gary Stamper

A couple of years ago we lost Anyaa’s fifteen year-old Westie companion, Miss Lily, a shamanic healing dog if there ever was one. Miss Lily had already been through a couple of “shamanic deaths” where we almost lost her, but this time there was no saving her. Anyaa felt strongly that Miss lily was ready, and she made the heart-breaking decision to gift Miss Lily, and our community, with consciously “giving death’ to her. In a beautiful ceremony at one of Miss Lily’s favorite places, we gathered community, many of Anyaa’s Priestesses, the circle of men that were at the Cove, and with the help of our vet, Tami Shearer, we all said our goodbyes as we ushered in the conscious passing of this beloved friend, as the painless process took place. There was not a dry eye to be seen.

It seemed as if Miss Lily understood the process and surrendered to it, as we all did. Her passing was her last living gift to us, although her gifts continue to this day for all who hold her memory.

We all now face similar challenges, only on a global scale never before seen.

Classic Shamanism, as opposed to Core Shamanism, is generally entirely involuntary. The individual is chosen by the spirits, often with no warning, and is not allowed to refuse the “gift”, or they will suffer illness, and/or insanity, and/or death. Classic Shamanism is nearly always accompanied by a traumatic death-and-rebirth experience, after which the personality is radically changed.Core Shamanism, on the other hand, is generally entirely voluntary. The individual chooses the path, rather than being chosen for it by the spirits. Although the seeker may feel “drawn” to shamanic practices, they are not in danger of illness, insanity or death for refusing to follow a particular path. They may choose their own human teachers, and they may stop at any time; although their lives may be poorer for it, they will not usually be penalized by the spirits unless they have made specific bargains.
Our “Collapse” will be approached through both paths. We must choose to change or the change can choose us. One is consciously “giving death,” and the other is entirely out of our control.
Anyaa and I have chosen the marriage of the two paths to help birth in a new world using a process we’re calling “Integral Shamanism.” From the Integral path, it requires the widest perspectives possible, which means that we absolutely must step out of denial about what’s happening today: the collapse of the industrial age and the battle for control of the planet. From the Shamanic path, it means we must welcome and usher in the death of the old so the new can emerge. There’s a strong tendency around denial to think that if we just envision the future we want to live in, that we can make it happen, and to a degree, that’s true. We need a vision of where we want to go, but it cannot happen through reform or incremental change. Because our culture is so death phobic, and because we don’t really relish losing our lifestyles, we don’t want to focus on the death of the old.  It’s important to understand that WE must also die in the process, and that this deathing process is good and right. we are dying to the patriarchy within us. This frees us from the tyranny of a debt-based, consumerism at-the-expense-of-the-rest-of-the-world lifestyle that keeps us addicted, stuck and far from free.  Once we can really get that, we can cheer on the coming demise of the old way, we can re-learn from the shamanic traditions that death has a season and a cycle and is our ally. We can learn from death, and grieve, and then begin to move on into regeneration and rebirth with the new energy that we have gathered in the process.
The time is now and the cycle is complete. We need to “give death” to the old power structure that has controlled the planet, and we cannot give up or stop standing for what we believe. This is where the Integral Warrior lives. The reason we now have the ability to do this is because those power structures are crumbling and their actions are becoming more and more transparent by the minute: FEMA camps, GMO foods, vaccinations, surveillance, giving up our rights for safety, the outright theft of trillions of dollars going to the elites as they attempt to push the rest of world deeper into global totalitarianism. We recommend the recently released film “Thrive” to see the whole picture from a compassionate and well-informed perspective. Those who have bought and sold our country have been openly talking about “The New World Order” for quite some time. Even with all this information that is available to us, because of our denial, we still cannot stop thinking about these now known facts in terms of conspiracy theories. We don’t want to seem ‘crazy’ or like some kind of extremist, and we don’t want to think that the power elite could really be that malevolent, so we put our suspicions away and go back into a semi-sleep. That’s their plan: to keep us asleep long enough to implement their plans.
Our job now, men and women, as Integral Warriors, is to fight them with everything we have.  We cannot stop with only a vision of the future, we must gift the planet with the death of patriarchy and the power elite. We must be actively giving death to an already dying, but not dead, empire. By consciously entering into our planet’s Dark Night of the Soul, we engage the SacredActivist as championed by Andrew Harvey and expressed in his recent book, “TheHope“. The spark was ignited in December of 2010, following Mohamed Bouazizi’sself-immolation in protest of police corruption and ill treatment. A series of protests and demonstrations across the Middle East and North Africa has become known as the “Arab Spring” even though not all participants in protests identify as Arab. To date, three governments have been overthrown as a result of the Arab Spring. It’s not hard to include the current OWS movement, first in the US, and now spreading across 80+ counties, as part of a greater whole, the hundredth monkey, the tipping point so desperately needed to shift us into the creative power of the next structure of consciousness that wants to emerge on the planet. As the Nation magazine points out, “After decades of exploitation, murder, and fraud, the corporate state is facing a genuine uprising of the people.” It’s about time.

Now, not all of these movements want the same thing. In the Arab Spring, most people want more freedom, better wages, and a chance at a middle class lifestyle. It doesn’t take a genius to understand that 7 billion people are not going to enjoy the same version of the middle class that we in the U.S. are in the process of losing.  In 2004, the United States accounted for 4.6 percent of the world’s population and 33 percent of global consumption–more than $9 trillion U.S. dollars.

Our role, as integral thinkers at the Strategic level of consciousness, or higher, is to first mid-wife in the death of the elite power structures, to hold the vision of those corrupt systems crumbling, and do whatever is needed to help them along as quickly as possible. Don’t be an observer in this drama. Don’t go back to thinking that we just need some good reforms, some band-aid fixes to help us hobble through to the next crisis. We have gone far beyond that, folks. Instead, if you are not informed, if you are avoiding reality, commit yourself to seeing the biggest possible picture of what is really happening on the planet. The number of information resources out there is staggering. Jump on board this very fast-moving train of consciousness, and don’t get lost in utopian visions of the future just yet. The time is NOW to help the shamanic deathing process. We must engage, because it’s only through sheer numbers of consciousness that we can break through to the other side where we have a chance to do everything differently.

We are winning, as is evidenced by the fact that the power elite can no longer hide anything from us, but we have to open our eyes and be willing to look at it. The outcome is not settled, and we can’t give up, and we can’t yet focus on the rebirth. We must focus first on Giving Death to the old ways.  If we act quickly, we may be able to mitigate some of the pain of powering down as opposed to collapsing.

In the meantime, we must remember that we can only help others if we first take care of ourselves. We are reminded of this every time we fly when we get our emergency flight instructions before taking off: “Put your drop-down oxygen mask on first.” In other words, give others the gift of your presence and wisdom in the new frontier….whatever that may look like.

Crosby-Nash on #Occupy