Burning away what isn’t needed
Last week I was given a first hand reminder of just how significant fire is in our lives. And just what an impact, for good and bad, it can have on us. You see, this past week I have been fighting off an infection. No clue where it is in my body, but my body responded as it should by raising my core body temperature up over 102f in order to kill these invaders.
I now think that more than burning away a foreign invader, this fever has been burning away old thought patterns, old scripts, and old stories embedded within my very cells, that I told myself from childhood but are no longer serving me. Cellular biologist Bruce Lipton (The Biology of Belief) believes that emotional memories are stored in the cells of our entire body, and this makes a lot of sense to me. So it also makes sense that when the time comes now that I am purging myself of these thought patterns, scripts, emotions, and stories, fever is being used to burn them out of my cells.
Fear and Flame
Fire tends to be something we fear, something held in awe, but also something that we actively try to avoid. Not just
literal fire (and a respect for literal fire is quite healthy!) but also the figurative.
I am a person who grew up frightened of passionate emotions – anger, lust, love, excitement, happiness. Anything that took me beyond a baseline calm. As an adult though I am finally earning that these fiery emotions can provide the energy needed to create positive changes, whether through spell or mundane work.
Many years ago, feminist witch Zsuzsanna Bupapest said it best: A witch who cannot curse, cannot cure.
Now, I don’t agree with Budapest on many things (most notably I think her views on transgender men and women is outdated and wrong) but here she makes a lot of sense.
Most spell work is created first as an internal thought-form. If you, as a witch, cannot generate enough passion , anger, and energy internally to create a curse (even if you chose to never actually create one), then there is no way you are going to be able to raise that level of energy when you are completely calm in order to bring healing.
Anger is seen by many as being bad, something to be avoided at all costs. Even the “rules” of Reiki tell us that each day we “should not anger”. My own experience has been however, that avoiding and ignoring anger has led to depression, anxiety, obesity, and most likely the auto-immune disorder rheumatoid arthritis which I now deal with on a daily basis, as all of the anger I had been ignoring and stuffing down over a lifetime began attacking me on a physical and an emotional level.
So now, I don’t tell people “don’t anger”. I, and you, have a choice. I can either ignore anger and allow it to use me, or I can honour anger, and focus it in order to bring about positive changes.
In the same way that an out-of-control fire can burn down a forest, but carefully controlled fires can remove dead undergrowth, making it less likely uncontrolled fires will happen later, and can also provide a barrier between a raging inferno and the rest of the forest.
Currently in my life I am working with the archetypal Warrior. And as I sat with this warrior energy last weekend, I found myself channelling the energies of Boudicca, the Iceni Celt who united different Celtic tribes in England in rebellion against the Romans. Hers was a righteous anger used to fuel her attacks on the Roman centurions, and with that anger she and her army completely destroyed Colchester and burned London to the ground.
Remember, I was told, you hold within you the power of a woman who burned London to the ground. It was this anger, focused, which made it possible for me to fight when I needed to fight, and continue moving forward each day when I didn’t think I could. It helped me to get out of an emotionally and mentally abusive relationship. And it helps me today in continuing to stand up for my needs, my desires, and my limits and boundaries as a woman.
Written for The Pagan Experience 2015