A few years ago when I first started sharing my intimate experiences with shamanism, I was contacted by a Lakota medicine man via email. He wanted to know what credentials I had to call myself a shaman. Shamanism and Native American medicine are a holy belief system, and many call themselves shamans who have no connection with the real craft.
I admitted to him that I had studied with some different traditions, but did not call myself a shaman and did not feel I had the right to do so. Callling someone a shaman should come from the community that the shaman serves. I do practice shamanism, and Spirit has given me some gifts and information directly that did not come from any teaching I have received. I teach a version of shamanism which I like to call an ingredient in the Cosmic Soup that I have either learned or been given directly by Spirit.
We emailed back and forth a couple times, and I related an experience that I had early on in my spiritual quest when I first began to study different belief systems. I was in a group meditation, and the facilitator had put on some Native American music. Imediately I had a vision of being in a Native American community. I was dead, and I was sitting atop a tall structure seemingly made out of wood. I was looking down on my beloved community, crying with them because I did so much love them. I realized that I was having a previous life memory.
After a few moments of experiencing the grief of leaving my beloved community, in my vision I turned into a large white bird and flew away.
At this point, after sharing my story, my new Native American friend gave me a Lakota name: Ska Kanga, which means White Bird. Apparently it is significant in his culture and from then on we were email friends.
Recently I purchased two handmade drums from him. He hand crafted them while sitting in ceremony and they are very special to me. I have since used them in my practice with clients with some amazing results.
I guess my message is this. I tell this to my students in every class I teach.
Credentials are worthless. I can teach you Reiki and give you a certificate that says you have passed whatever level you have taken from me. I can teach you everything I know and give you a paper that says that you studied with me. But your credentials are the difference you make in people's lives. Are you benefiting those who come to you for help?
If I cease making a difference in my client's lives then I will take down my website and my Facebook page and I will sit on the beach or be content with my "other" job at the Post Office.
Ska Kanga is my Lakota name. I am honored to have been gifted this name by my Lokota friend/medicine man. But my connection with Spirit is the credentials I most covet. I want to make a difference in the lives of those to whom I am given the opportunity to serve.
If you desire to connect with Spirit through me, you can contact me HERE.
Blessings to you as you navigate your path through this life and find your contribution to the planet.