The Jaguar Cronicles

I had a dream, a vision really about living deep in the jungle with the Jaguars; learning from them, communing with them, taking what they are teaching me and bringing it to the world. That place feels like home, like where I'm supposed to be, so I started meditating on that place, working energetically with the Jaguars, and journaling those experiences. Following are excerpts from those journal entries which I'm gathering and calling The Jaguar Chronicles.

I am here because they called me here. They called me here to learn from them. I am not the first and I will not be the last. The teachings are cyclic and passed along. They teach me how to be with them, how to respect their beating heart, how to be present with them, how to let go, to surrender. They are marvelously kind, gracious, generous and they are Jaguars. The rules are different here and I learn a moment and a movement at a time. Sometimes they sing me to sleep, chanting as the stars come out, and wake me up to watch as they dance in the moonlight.

I dreamed about them for a long time before I traveled here. They called to me in my dreams, shaking me awake, staring intently through me, making known how deep their love is. Yet it took a while for me to translate, to understand that I had to change my life - that my life was already changing - so I could hear them.

They are my family, my eyes of the world, my mentors, and my unrelenting soul mates. I am never far away from them, we are connected through the Heart. I am grateful for this gift of life that they offer me and the opportunity for communion.

I woke with a gasp, unsure of where I was except for total darkness.  I laid there letting my pounding heart slow and willing my breath to stop coming in raspy gasps while I surveyed my mind to remember where I was.  I tested my body, could I move it? was it still there?  Beginning to remember I started to sit up.  I was in the jungle again and I had been running....or had I been dreaming that?  As I sat up, legs slung gently over the edge of whatever I was sleeping on, toes barely touching soft earth, I heard a low, soft, guttural rumble.  I closed my eyes and took a breath in, slowly letting it out, and smiled to myself.  I knew exactly where I was.

I found two large glowing eyes starting intently in my direction when I opened my eyes.  I knew I was to follow and slipped my shoes on as I stood up and moved silently behind the iridescent moving orbs.  Stepping from the building they had built for their human visitors I could just make out a sliver of moon high in the sky over the tiny clearing.  Jaguar in front of me turned his head slightly and I continued down the small steps and followed him to the edge of the clearing. He stopped, allowing me to catch up to him, a knapsack on the ground at the entrance of a trail leading into the Jungle.

I stood near him, head bowed, and waited.  He circled around, stopping behind, hot breath on my back, low grumble soft moving from him to me.  He continued around to the front, head larger than mine, mouth slightly open, breath fully wrapping me with knowledge.  He gazed deeply into my eyes touching a depth I wasn't aware existed.  I was certain of his ability to remove me from this place with the slightest movement yet felt nothing but Love emanating from him as he held me there, embracing me, until a breeze moved the leaves of the trees and the magic spell was broken.

He stepped aside and I picked up the knapsack not sure where I was headed but knowing I would know and what I would gain could not be spoken.  I stepped onto the trail, slight moon and starlight guiding my way, Jungle closing completely behind me.

I close my eyes and let my breath settle deep into my body.  Not gulps or gasps but breaths that fill me, slow my heart beat, relax me until I am no longer just physical body.  My vision clears and I am there sitting on the steps of the little dwelling in the jungle.  My place, my home, true home.  It's just past twilight, not completely dark but minutes away.  I am alone sitting quietly.  Suddenly tears thick & hot pour from my eyes seemingly out of my heart, I cannot stop the impending dam break even though I poke my fingers at my eyes working to push the tears back in.

"This is not the place," a plaintive voice in my head says,"Sacred and ceremony.  This is not the place for the weakness to show."  Now I gulp, grasping for air desperately wanting to stop the raking sobs that are coming.  "No, I don't want to disrespect the magic of this place, the magic that this place has been for me."  I cover my face with my hands, embarrassed, horrified, and grateful They have not been here to see, to witness my flurry of weakness.  I am terrified what I might be imprinting here.  The darkness is thick and full now.  Perhaps if I leave enough offerings they will, though surely know I was here, be willing to over look it, not be disturbed by it.

Before I can move there is a deep gutteral breath over my left shoulder.  I know I have been seen, been watched.  The tears and sobs come faster now as all I can say over and over is "I'm sorry, I'm so very sorry."  Heavy, hot breath on my arm.  I don't want to look and then can't stop myself.  Darkness, two brilliant and large yellow-green eyes.  I'm terrified yet somehow know there is no better safer place to be to come apart.  His great eyes see straight to my heart and I know I must give up my secrets, my shame, my deepest threads of doubt.  I'm not sure how I will live, exist, without them but I pull at them as he watches, mouth ready, hungry.  I don't want to be sad anymore.  I don't want the sadness to drain me like an uncorked bottle anymore.  I pull and feed him, sending my secret pain into the great mouth I know is there waiting but cannot see.  The end of these threads do not come out easily.  I know I must give it away to save myself, I must let it die, stop being a mayrter, and it screams, "I don't deserve it.  I don't deserve to be eaten, to be food, to die in this most sacred way."

I place the final layers of this thread on his large tongue  knowing I have made my choice.  It will be easier this way.  He slurps and draws it out like spaghetti.  I lean over the steps and vomit.  It is nothing but making room and healing.  He licks his great lips, my tears begin to slow.  He stares at me, luminescent eyes never wavering.  "This is a place for ceremony and for learning.  We agreed long ago to teach and learn, to commune and have relationship.  There is no better place to come undone.  You always have the opportunity to choose."  He lays a great paw upon my heart, "You are afraid of love because all you remember is the pain.  Open yourself to the joy you so long for.  It is all around you.  Don't give into the fear.  It will not break you like you believe it will."  He removes his paw and melts back into the darkness.  My tears dry as I lie face up on the ground letting the earth and the stars soothe my broken open heart.

I close my eyes and breathe, long slow deep breaths.  I am grateful.  My body lightens to air and I am flying, then I am there.  Deep shadows, half moon in the sky, air thick with night sounds and jungle fragrance, wet and sweet.

I feel the earth under my feet and my heart begins to beat in sync with distant chanting.  I open my eyes recognizing I'm inside a cave carved high in the side of a mountain.  Moonlight illuminates the cave opening and I move slowly into the moonlight.

The chanting gets louder, deeper, as I peer out into the moonlit night and see the clearing.  They are there, circled around a fire, attention in ceremony.  They are each speaking their experience of the Dream this night, singing it here as it embraces them.  I am grateful to be a witness.  They are each singing their own relationship and instead of cacophony, every note is in harmony with the others.  They are all connected within the Dream, through and because of the Dream.  No fear present anywhere.  I feel my own breath move, rise up in me and I join them with my own distinctive song.  It blends in, harmonizes with the rest, filling in, becoming part of the whole.  The sounds of the jungle join in, erupting from everywhere.  Or have they been there the whole time moving in rhythm with the rest, my own attention expanding to acknowledge them?  We each send out our own songs; melody, notes, and rhythm; all expressions of the Dream here.  We inhabit this moment together, each being our individual expression, each being the Dream, connecting through the Dream, becoming tone within the Dream.

The songs swell and fade, swell and fade until the Sun breaks through the treetops and we all stop to breathe it in.  Together we sang who we are, sang the Dream, sang this place, this moment, and we sang the night into day as we all started over.

This Jungle has become my home, the place where I feel most complete and at ease with who I am becoming.  I feel this deep sense of belonging, perhaps bordering on contentment, as I continue to trek through the dense undergrowth and spiraling shafts of sunlight.  I am grateful to be here and grateful to have heard Their call and followed my Self here and I am grateful to be Their student.

I don't really know where I am going, don't have a specific destination.  All I know is that They asked me to head out on this trail from the clearing and I chose to go.  As I continue to walk the peace and love I feel so tangibly when I'm here to the back a little as my internal dialogue begins to take over.  With each step I take I remember what I will be going back to when I leave here.  This is my 5th trip here within 18 months and in order to do this I had to quit my teaching job before I left.  These trips are very much a feeling thing, not something easily explainable when asking for time off.  Once I was gone an entire month, another I came and left 5 days later.  And when I'm here time moves differently and is only minimally related to days marked on a calendar.  When I'm feeling moved to make a trip I have a slight sense of how long the trip will be but never really know; it can be a little hard to plan for. 

The first two trips came over summer break and were shorter, 5 days and 10 days not counting travel time.  The third came over the Winter holidays, this was my trip that lasted a month and gratefully I had arranged to take an extra two weeks off a few months before hand.  I have sense of time moving here but quickly loose track of actual days.  I go by sun and moon rise but loose the days of the week reference and most time the number.  This particular trip I came just after the school year started and when I applied for the time off I was called into the HR office and reprimanded for requesting too much time off.  I went home and sat with it.  The trip felt more important to me than jumping through hoops to keep my job so I resigned.

Now as I trekked through this lush experience, so fully grateful to be here, I wondered what I would be coming back to when I left.  I'd had some savings built up but a major portion was spent on these trips over the last year.  I took out the last of my savings before I left and paid my rent for 3 months ahead just incase I was gone that long.  As I watched my feet take step after step on the moss covered jungle floor I wondered if that had been a good idea.  I had about $1000 left in cash  and my plane ticket home.  I wouldn't have to have any of that while I was here but I was concerned about going back and having nothing to help me through the transition.  I was sure I could find another job but didn't know what it would be or how long it would take to find.  I had a few pieces of furniture I could probably sell, though most I had sold already since with every trip here I seemed to want to downsize a little more and there wasn't much left. 

As I walked I thought and as I thought I got more agitated.  I started adding up in my head estimates of what it would cost me to get back to the states and then in vain attempted to work out how long I could live on whatever was left.  I led a pretty quiet life and it was just me both here and there.  No fall back plan, no fall back husband to swoop in and pick up my pieces.  The thought of borrowing money from my mom again and at my age made me sick to my stomach.  I marched on trying to figure out what I was going to do. 

On one of my early trips I felt so at home here that I actually considered selling everything and moving here, moving in with Them.  It felt like what I wanted more than anything else; live here and spend my days learning from Them and being in ceremony with Them, all time suspended.  I loved that idea, nurtured it and worked on making it become a reality.  The next trip I came ready to talk to them about it, ask if I could come live with them, move in and become one of them.  When I got here I was met at the edge of the clearing by the one who spoke to me the most, the one I seemed to work with the most.  He stood at the edge of the clearing as I came exuberantly down the path ready to declare my commitment to my life by living here full time.  His presence there, his eyes engaging and holding mine gave me pause.  I slowed and stopped a few feet from him, setting my packs down on the ground and sitting on them, my bubble of joy deflating rapidly.  He held me in his gaze for a long time and in me I knew moving in wasn't an option.  "This place, like this journey, is not a place for you to come and stay, growing old within it's walls.  This place is a place of learning, of teaching and growing.  What we share with you cannot grow and evolve without being part of the whole that is this world.  You are a vehicle for these teachings to live and thrive.  We would not have called you here and we would not be able to share what we know without you being about to take them with you into the world, planting them and giving them life."  Though slightly disappointed I understood and got on with my learning, learning that what I was being given was a give-a-way and I too would give it away when the time was right.  That give-a-way I could not step up to if I was no where but here.

My mind became a racing tangle of doubt and insecurity, I would be homeless and have to get rid of my car for lack of being able to keep it up and ultimately I wouldn't be able to make any trips here anymore until something drastically changed.  How come I didn't play the lottery more often or wasn't one of those girls who always wanted a guy around, someone to take care of me?  The thought of this being my last trip here hit me like I had been punched in the stomach by a bulldozer.  I tripped over a root landing face first in soggy green moss.  As I got back up dusting myself off and checking for any injuries requiring attention I realized I was crying, my breath coming in quick painful gulps.  I looked around wildly, searching for anything familiar; this was my jungle afterall, my true home.  I had trekked these trails many times.  How could I not recognize anything?  I tried to run, stumbled, ran into trees and whirlled myself around, my chest started to hurt, breath in fast, thick, shallow, gasps.  This could not be happening.  I pitched myself toward a shaft of sunlight hoping to feel the heat on my body and get myself centered.  When I got there I realized it was not sun but moonlight.  I had been walking for almost 24 hours straight.

I stumbled forward gasping, willing myself to calm down long enough to get my bearings.  There was a stream in front of me, bigger than a traditional creek but not quite big enough to be a river.  I knelt at it's edge, reaching to scoop some water and splash my face.  I saw his face reflected there, brilliant green eyes peering deep into me, through me, and stopped.  Though his reflection wavered with the movement of the water his gaze did not.  I leaned back on my knees and sobbed into my already wet hands, my heart filling with shame for what had just happened. 

"You have a task to complete here."  I heard the words in my body instead of with my ears. I took a deep breath and wiped my face.  "You are lost in your own wilderness but not in this one.  Lie down on the earth where you are and remember." 

I feel them surround me
as my grip on what I thought I knew dissolves. 
A tight circle, glowing eyes as they begin toning,
a harmony creating a vibration that eases the passing.

Breath on my back
pointed directly at my heart. 
They stand at the ready,
catching the pieces as they peel off,
transforming the fear. 

I am so loved in this place, so supported.
Yet my desire to hold on to the dead lingers. 

Their voices become louder,
their eyes more intense
I give in
the vibration of the experience holds me up. 

A breath in, a breath out
I step into the fire. 
They circle around
chanting Me into place.

I let go
the fire consumes what was. 
I watch her go
with the simpleness of choice. 

The fear of not knowing who I am now
The fears of how to function from this new place
The fears of not being enough 
form and fall.

The circle has broadened. 
The sky is full of stars. 
I move around the fire,
pink toes glowing in their newness. 

My gratitude preceeds my step from the fire.
I sink to my knees as they circle tighter.
Their toning has become my truth.
I join them in the transformation.