Our foundations have been shaken. Loved ones lost or vulnerable to the virus, our financial security and independence threatened, and the emotional and psychological toll experienced from being separated from family, friends, co-workers, and our larger community have left us feeling unrooted and off balance. There is no doubt the last two months have been life altering in ways that will not be fully understood for months or years to come. These hardships are meaningful and should not be minimized.
And yet, there is something familiar in all of this, this time in the Shadow. In my tradition of witchcraft, we explore these themes regularly through the mysteries of birth, life, death, and rebirth. We descend into our own Underworld to reveal our Shadow allowing us to process, assimilate, and ultimately heal those parts of ourselves. If I’ve learned anything from this work, it’s that healing and growth can only occur when we are challenged-when our foundations are shaken.
Those sensitive to it can feel this same pattern currently playing out in the collective consciousness. We can feel it at work in the breakdown of our government institutions and the political wars of the last few years. We can feel it in the unstable weather patterns, the fires, and the earthquakes. We hear it in the cries of our ancestors and see it in the intensity of our dreams. We hear it almost like a voice on the wind, and we recognize it for what it is.
As individuals, we are not immune from the currents flowing through the collective consciousness. In the last two months, I’ve felt challenged, uprooted, and unbalanced. I’ve had to ask for help, something that has always been difficult for me as I value freedom and independence almost above everything else. Vulnerability is definitely not in my comfort zone.
It has been a struggle, but I’m determined to rise to this challenge and take the opportunity to grow. The tree never knows how strong and deep its roots run until it faces the storm. My spirit allies, ancestors, and the elders of the craft all are giving the same advice. Hold your ground, stay rooted, and tend your land. Following their advice, I’ve turned to my craft to keep my loved ones and circle healthy and safe. I’ve walked into my own Underworld, looked again into the mirror that resides there, and continued my own healing.
But now I’ve chosen not to remain in the Shadowland. I know the storm still rages, and new challenges will come over the next few weeks, but the mysteries are true teachings, and the time of my rebirth is here. I’m awakening to new connections and relationships, trusting they will be what they are meant to be. I’m finding my voice, this blog being the first step. Spring has truly arrived for me. Knowing my roots are strong and my foundations run deep, I’m choosing to rise.
Jennifer Bower is a witch, healer, and teacher in Charlotte, NC. Her background combines education and experience in psychology and social work, training and extensive work in energy healing, and research and scholarship in neopagan theology and philosophy. Jennifer is the owner of Liminal Spaces and Liminal Spaces Mystery School where she also teaches several classes and is active in the local spiritual community. She leads a local coven in the Ignis Spirae Tradition.