Wherever you stand, be the soul of that place. ~Rumi
So often we talk about totems, helping spirits, deities, Guides–which are all well and good. There are other influential souls with whom we can enter into deep relationship, and they’re right under our noses, every day. I call them our Home spirits, though I suspect they can be identified many ways.
These are the Nature spirits, land elders, and the consciousness of your actual home–the dwelling in which you live–who are guardians with whom you are in relationship all the time. They may be your favorite hellebores in the side garden, the cactus in a planter by the front door, the lawn, itself. They may be souls of indigenous land keepers, elementals that have never been in form, the spiritual manifestation of your town or bioregion. The soul of your home, each room, every beam, can engage you.
Being aware of spaces and how we use them, move through them, contribute to them, are affected by them, affect them–all of these are important. Despite that we use them for spiritual practice, most of us don’t bring them into our personal spiritual practice. We’re more conscientious of the rituals we do in spaces, the fetishes bring into them, the altars we build in them, yet how often do we actually engage the spirits of our home space? How often do we inquire about the needs of the land’s elders? How do they embrace (or not) other cultural flavors/allies of our spiritual path?
Acknowledge them, first of all. Create an opening to interact with them. Get a feel for what beings are ever-present in your home space. Invite them into your etheric space and communicate with them. Are they ones you already engage with, or are they new? How are they connected to the land, the home? How do they want to connect with you? Ask what they need from you. State what you need from them.
This ongoing dialogue is key to being fully present in an animistic life, certainly in fulfilling the role of shaman. Historically, shamans served the tribe, a particular territory. Their relationship with the Nature spirits of that terrain enabled their success at caring for their tribe, at growing into their skills, and in working with other shamans, other terrains.
We don’t all have the same access to nature. Some live in city flats, others on farms, carefully manicured suburbia–none of which really matters when we consider the uniqueness of the relationships we form with and around our personal space. For that matter, some of us aren’t that enthused about direct interface with Nature. Sit with that contradiction, truly. Honestly open up to what your role in working with local spirits is, and what they need from you. You don’t have to suddenly become a gardener, wilderness enthusiast, or master of sacred space. But you do have to become the master of your sacred space, or at least its willing host to be part of its mastery of being, of relating. These spirits are the eyes and ears of the places in your life that you can’t attend. They are the true guardians of your home, your personal domain. You are the manifestation of theirs.
When I first started working with the Home spirits of our current residence, I was greeted by many. They told me that in order for the balance between the physical and spiritual world to sustain and evolve, every place must have a human conduit. There must be a sentient bridge through which an exchange of life force happens, a consolidated awareness is forged, and all involved benefit.
We can’t deeply root into our own gifts and fulfill our needs until we connect with the spirits most immediately around us. They’re viable. They are important to our personal path, and our relationship with them is vital to the collective path of the planet. They are the roots we so often try to find in ourselves, forgetting they were already there.
Working with Home spirits isn’t just about where you are. It’s about where you’re going, where they have been, and where the planet needs to be.
I say a prayer daily to and for those who came before me on this land. My house has been in my family for 60 years, and I pray to those ancestors too. But I am convinced that this area which once had a meadow (now 3 McMansions) was a gathering place for our Native American tribes. A flat space in hilly terrain, near fresh and salt water.
The land has experienced such stress as it has been developed. Each home, if not new, around us has ‘biggified’ added a floor, boxed out, expanded to property lines. What happens to the Earth after these changes is heartbreaking. Trees and shrubs die. It usually takes about five years. This is why I am dedicated to native gardening and habitat restoration. But sadly,for every shrub or bush I plant, a big tree, like the oak across the street from me just today, is cut down. This tree was healthy. Home to Orioles. Perhaps it was a bit too close to electric lines, but it never had a chance to make it’s case. Once the crew came in and stripped the limbs, what was the point of leaving it up. The trunk is in pieces on my neighbors lawn, and it speaks volumes. This is no “hollow tree’ that needed to be cut down because it would fall. This was just an incoveniant tree. Heartbreaking. I said a memorial to it once the crew cleared out.
Gentrification is always difficult. But here it has gone so amuck. I have witnessed so many trees murdered.
I wish people knew the story of these trees. Who and what lived there. What children climbed them back in the day. I guess the only consolation is that it is just now nesting season. Any birds that might have nested there will have to look elsewhere. I hope they come to our yard.
I really wish I had some solutions for the geopathic stress I am sure the land under my feet feels.
Particularly interesting to me because we’re just finishing some home improving, and now I’m doing a lot of reorganizing. Discovered items in my “inbox” from 2011. Probably some spirits have been feeling neglected.
Also, I meditate in my closet and I wonder now how that might affect the meditation.
Sacred decluttering. That’s big, Peggy.
Maybe try meditating in different places for a while, and see how space influences it? Maybe the closet gives to you, but other places may need something you can give.
Thanks for stopping by!
Good thoughts, Kelley. thanks.
This post really resonates with me and the specific work I am doing today in my studio. It was so great that you shared this through Facebook!
Thanks for stopping by, Stephanie! I hope your work is going well!
You are really touching on something that I have been thinking of, and why we want the house to feel good, welcoming to them so they in turn can help to boost the vibration and it works out well all the way around. I need to stop thinking and act.
It really is a give-and-take arrangement. I think it’s very hard to prosper when you aren’t interacting with the spirits in the space where you want to grow.
Great to see you, Kate!
Other guides and energies get a lot of hype but home spirits are integral, too; it’s important that we acknowledge these energies! Thank you so much for this post!
Thanks for stopping by, Tiffany!
how do we know which ones they are, or if they are even in the house?
You may sense some in the home, and others only outdoors. To figure out who’s who, note where you are when you feel them–certain parts of the yard, parts of the house, only at night. If you are comfortable, ask them to tell you. They will. You’ve got awesome insight Sherrill. You’ll recognize BS when you hear it, and an ally when you feel it.