Throughout the history of shamanism across the world it is often found that those that walked this pathway whether by lineage or rite of passage tended to walk alone and were often found on the fringe of the communities only being seen when needed.
They may well have enjoyed the company of beloveds and lovers along the way however in general the lifestyle was mostly that of a lone wolf and those that were intimate with them knew this and accepted this. Much like witches (wise people) they were not always seen as an active social member of the community but they were the most respected for their guidance when imbalances or challenges within the community arose.
Today we live in different times. That’s not to say in some countries like America, Mongolia, Siberia, Africa, South America, Australia and parts of Asia, this does not still occur but it’s becoming increasingly rare. Still the walk of this particular type of pathway even in its more contemporary form is more often than not much akin to the journey of lone wolf in its teaching.
Women who walk this path tend to find it somewhat isolating and at times very lonely. It’s important to understand the path they have taken is not so much a relationship with another human but a deeper relationship to spirit.
That is not to say that your life is like a nun or who is married to god. Not at all! There are no rules to say you can’t enjoy a wonderful relationship with another, it’s just that on this particular path you would need a partner that is strong enough in themselves to allow you this inner journey work in order to be of service to others and enough space and time to work with it.
At times it can be compared to living with a great poet, musician, artist or writer. As the burning priority is the passion for their work that flows through them and at times is unstoppable and in need of attention.
There is a lot of energy to handle for the lone wolf on the shamanic trail, let alone one that lives intimately with them and shares their bed each night. Those that feel deeply drawn to the shaman’s path are learning how to be the bridge between two worlds. They are natural transformers of density and there is a great deal of the collective consciousness that is being sifted through especially in sleep where a lot of the multidimensional work is done.
I heard a practicing shaman once say. “We are very difficult people to live with.”
I’m not sure about that, but I do feel that there is a high sensitivity that needs to be balanced and cared for and if you lover or partner is not in tune with that then it’s going to be very tumultuous indeed. (This is not a permission note to be lazy and not take responsibility in ordinary reality because you think you have a great gift. To truly walk the path one must be able to manage their responsibilities in BOTH worlds)
Those that are practicing with plant medicine need to take extra care to assimilate the learning and do deep cleansing of their many layered Auric field for the sake of those that are close to them. If you don’t take responsibility for your own Auric debris, your partner and or children will wear it and it will take its toll on them and your relationship. I speak from experience both as one who walks the path and one who spent ten years in relationship with a practicing ethno botanical celtic shaman.
Wolves have been given a very bad reputation as being vicious and a creature to be feared, to the point that their numbers have decreased so drastically that groups are now trying to breed them back into the wild. This fear is unfounded. If humanity destroys their habitat then they are likely to venture into the villages to hunt for food. Like bears, fox’s etc. Those examples have been put up as the reasons for the hunting and killing.
Shamans were also judged and feared but they too have often been misunderstood. Charleton in wolf’s clothing have given the rest a bad name. They may wear the costume of the teacher, but they do not practice the path with integrity. Some of them have used the glamour coat as a way to attract lovers for their own hunger.
There have been several factual accounts of wolves being aggressive only when they are under attack or starving because man has limited their environment to the point the humans are now the greedy and cruel predators unlike the wolves themselves who just hunt for what they need. Shamans of integrity also do not seek to harm, nor to take from another but be warned, those that are serious in their practice and connection to the spirit world are NOT repeat, NOT to be messed with! Grrrrr……
When you choose a path for yourself, whether that be just for a retreat, in your daily inner journeys, on your own path, on a vision quest, a healing quest or for the rest of your life, you have the opportunity to teach yourself inner strength, resilience, freedom, self-reliance and independence and your own sense of inner sovereignty. You learn to think for yourself and trust your intuition without being so influenced or swayed by the petty snarling’s of the pack.
Every declared ‘Shaman’ I have met has been a lone wolf. They indeed have had lovers and deep karmic kingships, but in general they have been on a far deeper relationship with spirit than they have been with their lover, partner or muse.
That’s not to say they are not loving, caring, thoughtful or responsible but those who are intimate with them need to be strong of spirit to walk along side the lone wolf and to understand that at times this wolf will deliberately take a trail that they are not welcome to follow. It’s not neglect, its self-preservation.
I’m not writing this to freak anyone out and tell you that you will be a lone wolf. I am writing this to help you to view this path from a wider perspective.
Wolf qualities: Is the true spirit of the free and unspoilt wilderness, a wild spirit. Understand that specific territories are sacred. Do not fight unnecessarily, teaches you to know who you are and to develop strength, confidence and surety in that you do not have to demonstrate and prove yourself to all. Teaches you how to use ritual to establish order and harmony within your own life. Helps to understand that true freedom requires discipline, learning to trust your own insights, hearing sensitivity, great discrimination via its powerful sense of smell, teaches that you are the governor of your life, you create it and direct it. loyal, The wolf will guard you as it teaches you, sometimes strongly, sometimes gently but always with love. Sourced from Ted Andrews.
In working with animal medicine it is always important to study the qualities of its prey, most common prey for wolves are deer. Without this understanding of the polarities of the predator and its prey one can suffer a state of imbalance, where there is too much of one or too little of the other qualities. The deer teaches sensitivity, gentleness, adaptability, and attunement
In today’s society many fear walking alone and not being part of a pack or belonging to someone. In most of us, there is a need to belong to something greater than ourselves, and that is only natural. We want to thrive rather than survive. However the wolf walking the shamans pathway feels the sense of belonging primarily to mother earth, to spirit, to the elements, the animals spirits, inner worlds…… and ‘Great mystery’ which within it holds all of the multidimensional worlds which we can travel in.
If you feel a great pull to belong to something, a group, a belief system, just be aware that you are looking outside yourself. You are in a place of longing and desire. Look within to the lone wolf that we all have inside of us. Feed the lone wolf inside yourself with good spirit medicine that feeds your soul rather than running into a humans camp and stealing a chicken because you are starving and you have lost your way. Hone your instincts to self nurture, embrace the pack when you feel too, feed your children when they need feeding but know when to walk your own trail to refill your sense of sovereignty
‘Do not go where the path may lead.
Go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.’