“Your sacred space is where you can find yourself again and again.” – Joseph Campbell
In many of the traditions I have studied, illness or disease have been defined as being out of balance or harmony; some say with our soul, some say with our different aspects of self, such as body, mind, emotion and spirit. Historically, this has been a foundation for healing and yet, in our current medical model, we tend to be hyper-focused on specific conditions or symptoms without looking at the whole person. This is hopefully beginning to change as we are seeing more focus on the whole person, but it is is slow process. What I have learned in my own journey and in working with others for over 17 years in the field of holistic healing is that a key to transformation and healing is to take responsibility for one’s own healing process.
For this purpose, the definition of “responsibility” is the ability to respond. This is a choice we can make for ourselves. Often, I hear folks say “I know what I need to do, I just can’t seem to make those changes” or “I know I need to do something, but I just don’t know what”. And, we often need to get support or guidance, particularly when we are working to change long-held patterns, conditions or beliefs. Yet, ultimately, only we can truly know our own selves. Getting to know ourselves and our inner guidance system is a major step toward healing and transformation.
It is also important to learn to experience that change is possible. I find this is best done experientially through what I refer to as a “state change”. As we begin to have the experiences of feeling differently, hopefully better, we begin to learn how to create our own shifts and then, the possibilities for change become wide open. It is often in this space, which is usually one where we begin to create greater presence, clarity and awareness, that we can begin to know ourselves more deeply and learn to access the healer within.
There is no set formula and there is no magic formula that works for all people. It is important to learn what works for us as individuals, to learn what doesn’t work and to learn how to be in tune with ourselves in an ongoing way. Life is a journey and although we may heal from one condition or transform a pattern or belief, we are multidimensional beings. As long as we are journeying in this life, there will be more work to do and another layer to explore. So, learning to access the healer within and take responsibility for our own process is a vehicle that supports our evolution as human beings.
Learning to connect with Sacred Space is something that is a part of every culture and religion of the world. It is something we can do in community and it is something we can cultivate on our own, both inwardly and outwardly. When we enter into Sacred Space, we change energetically. We step more fully into the present moment, our hearts open and we become more fully engaged in our experience. Whatever our background or beliefs, finding ways to cultivate and connect with Sacred Space opens the doorway for knowing ourselves more deeply and accessing our inner wisdom. This can be a powerful component in discovering the healer within.
At its most basic, Sacred Space is a place that invites the contemplation of divine mystery and encourages an attitude of spiritual openness. We can consider this somewhere where we open our hearts and find support from spirit, in whatever way we define or believe that to be. A Sacred Space may be a physical location where we go to search for meaning or truth such as a temple, church or even a place in nature. It is not necessarily a place where answers are grasped or understood but more so it is where questions may be asked. It can be a place or state where divine inspiration mixes with practices such as ritual, song, dance or prayer that help us to feel a sense of connection with our spirituality.
The origin of the word “Sacred” stems from Latin, sacer, which means “to make holy”. In a sense, sacred refers to something that is set apart from the ordinary perhaps with intention, feeling or conviction. Stepping out of the ordinary, out of the busyness or affairs of daily life is a foundational aspect of connecting with the healer within. There are many ways to step out of the ordinary. Many think of going to outer places such as temple, cathedral, space in nature, but we also have the ability to connect with and cultivate that sacred space within our own selves.
As we learn to connect with Sacred Space, both inwardly & outwardly, we begin to come into greater alignment with our own essence and the energies around us. This helps to create a container for intention, connection and healing. Although I refer to inner and outer ways of creating Sacred Space, this is really all the same. “Our outer world is a reflection of our inner world.” The outer is important as it reveals to us where our work lies by what is emerging in our lives. When we become our own healer – we move inner to outer and outer to inner interchangeably knowing that energetically they are the same.
The following are some ways to explore connecting with Sacred Space:
Calling The Directions – In many cultures, including Native American, Buddhist, Asian, Celtic and other indigenous groups, there is a strong connection with the directions, which carry energy and meaning. Calling in the directions can be done as a ritual to start the day or open Sacred Space; also, one can work with the energy or quality of a certain direction. This can be a way to connect with specific energies as well as the greater whole. This type of practice supports moving out of the limited construct of our individual self into the collective energy of creation. Prayer For A New Day is an example of this practice. Associations and meanings will vary based on culture or tradition; this is an example of how one might explore and find what meaning or method of practice is most resonant for them.
Shamanic Journey Work – From the shamanic viewpoint, everything is alive, has spirit, and all things/creation are interconnected through what we call the web of life. There is an understanding that we need to respect and honor all things and all beings as we are a part of a greater whole. In a shamanic journey process, there is an opportunity to connect with the Sacred Space within and explore one’s own inner guidance system. Learn more about Shamanic Healing: A Journey Of Reconnection
Ceremony & Ritual – This is a wonderful way to access and create Sacred Space. This is something one can do according to their own personal belief system or culture. It can be as simple as stating an intention and lighting a candle or an as elaborate at a medicine wheel gathering or ceremony. The important thing, once again, is to find what resonates with you and begin to bring more of this into your daily life. Learn more about Finding Connection Through Ceremony & Ritual.
Meditation – Meditation practice, in and of itself, is a way to enter the sacredness within. Also, moving into a place of stillness creates a gateway to our divinity. The practice of meditation and creating a space to practice can be wonderful way to cultivate Sacred Space. Having a clear space, coming to the cushion or seat in an intentional way, perhaps lighting a candle or incense, etc. is a way to shift our energy more fully into the present moment. Each time we practice, we are fostering our experience and ability to access in any moment. If you’d like to explore a 31 Day Guided Practice, try May Is For Metta.
Mind/Body Practices – Finding a practice that supports body, mind, emotion and spirit such as Yoga, Tai Chi, Qi Gong and coming to it in an intentional way offers an opportunity to consciously move into Sacred Space. Working with this type of practice helps to develop awareness of one’s own energy system as well as our interrelationship to the greater whole.
Sound Healing – In many cultures and shamanic practice, sounds such as drumming or rattling are used to facilitate a natural altered state of consciousness. For many people, simply listening to music is a way to shift their energy and awareness. Using sound or music is a powerful way to create a state change and can be utilized to connect with Sacred Space. Using a certain sound or piece of music can be part of a ritual practice or ceremony as well.
Spending Time In Nature – The natural world is the original sacred space. When we enter into the natural world or consciously connect with nature, our energy automatically shifts. This can be as simple as going for a walk in the woods, hugging a tree, or laying on the earth. We may wish to bring natural elements into our home such as rocks, plants or a waterfall. We can connect with nature physically but also can do so energetically through meditation, visualization or shamanic journey work. Mother Nature is one of the most powerful gateways to cultivating Sacred Space. Also, as we love, honor and respect nature, we begin to access more of our own sacredness as part of a greater whole.
Stepping into Sacred Space facilitates a shift in our energy and our consciousness. This affects us on all levels – body, mind, emotion & spirit. We may not see changes right away as it may take time to manifest but this is creating a foundation for change. As we enter into the stillness and begin to shift our energy from the busyness and chaos of the world and of our own mind, we can begin to hear our inner wisdom more strongly.
Again, everyone is different. There is not one blueprint for healing and transformation. What works for me may not work for you. But, there are many tools, resources and practices to explore and see what is resonant for you. Ask yourself these questions:
“Where do I feel a shift?”
“Where do I feel a sense of connection?”
“Where do I feel more at ease?”
“What practice or experience helps me to access my deeper essence or my inner wisdom?”
Always be asking and observing as life is a great exploration. This is why journaling can be a great practice to support the process of transformation and healing. Even if you are not into writing, it can be a great way to track your experiences and begin to build a toolbox or resource list for your own personal journey of discovering the healer within.
I hope you’ll take some time to reflect and explore connecting with sacred space as a way to discover the healer within. Just 10 minutes a day of entering sacred space can be a powerful practice. You may wish to try different practices each day for a while or choose one to work with for 10 – 30 Days to explore what’s possible.
As always, I’d love to hear your experiences, thoughts and reflections…
Are you ready to go deeper in your process of transformational and healing? I’d love to support you in your journey to discover the healer within. Learn more at www.bethterrence.com/Individuals.