When we left last Monday, my “inner lizard” was screaming warnings of fear and dread, as only she can, about not attending a sweat lodge ritual (temazcal) with a Mayan shaman while on vacation. “Danger. Danger. Danger,” she shouted. “What if you have to leave and humiliate yourself. Worse yet, what if you pass out? Worse yet, what if you have a heart attack out in the middle of the jungle and never leave alive.” You get the picture.
However, I decided not to let Caty Catastrophe (as I fondly call her) deter me. Instead, I told her that the danger was unproven, to have a snack, take a nap, and I’d (my observing “wizard” self) look out for the two of us. Fortunately, with years of meditation and now mindfulness, she obliged and I left with 7 other brave companions to see what lie ahead.
As we entered the sweat lodge, I wondered if Caty might be right. Unbeknownst to me, we would be there for 45 minutes with the heat increasing four levels. While the shaman (surname Debbie) spoke calmly about the Mayan creation myth, I doused myself with the bowl of water being passed around, certain I wouldn’t make it to level 3.
Then the magic happened. I noticed myself settling down and listening attentively to what Debbie was said. I was still sweating profusely but it didn’t feel unbearable. At the start, she’d mentioned that if we got uncomfortable it would be cooler to sit or lie on the thatched mats which covered the floor. At level 3, I sat down and was chanting vigorously. By level four, I was lieing down in corpse position, a yoga pose, and actually felt cool.
Next we left the lodge to enter a ritual spring. It was invigorating and soothing. I felt triumphant. Free of my fears and worries. Discovering once again, that trusting my “inner wizard” (wiser/higher self) is definitely the way to go!
What are your “lizard” fears stopping you from? How can you take one small step this week to let your “wizard” self guide you instead?