For thousands of years and in all cultures, shamans have walked across hot coals to honor the element of fire and bring healing to their communities. In modern times, it is crucial that we actively reclaim our own innate power to heal ourselves and direct our destiny, to move from acting from fear into a place where each action is based out of love and joy.
Ritual marks a time of change and transformation. To witness or participate in a firewalking ritual offers a chance to break limiting belief systems, and tools to make the shifts you want in your life to stick. Whether you choose to walk or not at the end of the fire-walking seminar, you will be changed for good.
There are just a few times in our life when we are offered a "square centimeter of chance"; a gift to completely transform our lives. The firewalk is such an opportunity. What do you want to energize in your life right now? Join in this ancient, sacred gathering as we open ourselves to deep healing and change and dance with the fire of life.
Dancing the Fire
It is one of the first lessons we learn as children: fire burns. And for many of us this lesson goes in very deeply, and includes not only the sting of physical fire, but translates into a fear of the fire of our own passion, desire, and dreams. Firewalking is one of the oldest human rituals on the planet. In every culture around the world, people have used firewalking as a means of healing and purifying their communities and themselves. Today, firewalking is an incredible tool for modern humans to use.
Moving Beyond Fear
Our fear of fire is a deep seated belief, one of the core players in our belief system. The first time I watched someone step onto the 1,200 degree coals, I felt something snap. Suddenly one of my core beliefs had been turned upside down, bringing all my other beliefs with it. The possibiliy of creating serious change in my life was so tangible at that moment, because the structures within my brain had been shattered. I had actually witness what I knew was impossible! There was nothing for my brain to do but crumble.
As a rule, brains don't like crumbling. Our ego loves being right, having things be safe. Whenever something is not safe for our ego, the ego pumps out a wave of fear to deter us from changing in any way that goes against its self image. Fear is a powerful human emotion. I've found through my seven years of firewalking and teaching that fear can actually be a great friend. Even after the sixtieth time time I walked on fire, I still feel that initial rush of fear as I step up to the fire. But I've learned to take the fear and see it as simply energy. We can all take the energy of our emotions--any emotions--and by seeing them simply as energy we can use them to support us rather than hinder us on our path. With practice, it is simple to find a place of silence within, take a deep breath, and transform the fear into excitement and joy. The next time you feel fear rise in your life, tell yourself--this is simply energy. This is simply energy. With that awareness, you can make a choice about how you want this particular energy to work in your life. You can definitely use it to stop you in your tracks. You also have the choice to take your deepest fears and transform them into impetus for change. Know that your belief system was inherited from your parents, and may not necessarily be true. The firewalk can bring these beliefs to the light.
Fire as Teacher
Walking across forty feet of coals, savouring each step as I watch my feet move across the fire. I feel like I am walking above the lights of New York City. Even when doubts come up in my life, I always go back to that moment on the coals. The feeling of total communion with the fire, a perfect marriage of my soul and the coals.
Fire continues to teach me everday--when I meditate with a flame; when I burn myself on the stove and laugh that I can walk on coals but when I'm not paying attention will burn myself on a frying pan; when I feel passion within my body and act on it. The fire has taught me to honor the flames with in myself and walk through all the firewalks in my life. Because for each of us, the real firewalk, the real challenge, is to live our lives fully, with purpose and joy.
Light misting rain haloes our bodies in the darkness as we circle around the red glistening coals wearing our shoes loosely on our feet we hold hands and chant, energy buzzing my fingers, shaking my knees hush of silence and we all stare at the center, a thick layer of burning charcoal chunks ten by ten feet of contained fire to prove the impossible is possible. I look at Sarah, standing solidly next to me, who came at a last minute invitation, not knowing what to expect. In her eyes I see, even if none of us walk, even if we leave with our feet still cold from this wet grass, we are changed. And then the first woman steps forward, quiet, grey-haired she is going first? I think as with slow grace she unfolds her brown poncho, hands it to someone and stands before the fire chasm. This seems a dream, a vision as she bows respectfully to the impossible, raises her arms to her side proud as a gymnast and walks across the coals. She walks across the coals! I see her feet touch the fire I see her feet swallow the coals I see! And I am crying and laughing, feeling my cold feet tingle.
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Heather Ash and Raven Smith are certified through:
The International Firewalking School devoted to excellence