By Lisa Schermerhorn, Personal Development Coach.
The last part of my Shamanic Diviner Apprenticeship was a fire walk. Yes, you are reading that correctly, a fire walk. I had never done one before, but others in my group had and I trusted them. We spent most of the day gathering wood for the fire, doing preparation and rituals for the walk. In my mind, I always thought that the fire would die down and we would just be walking on cooled ashes. I don’t know what made me think that, but it made me feel better about about the idea of walking on fire.
Why do a fire walk anyway? Why is it important? How can it possibly be transformational? I really didn’t think much about it, until Ann, our Shaman and fire walk facilitator lit the fire. It was no small fire. We sat around waiting for the perfect moment and suddenly Ann announced that we would start soon. My heart went into my throat, the flames were still roaring. How is this possible? There were no cooled ashes! I began to panic.
Ann grabbed a large rake, broke up the pile of burning wood and placed what was burning on either side of a pathway she was making. She then spread the RED HOT COALS into the center. She also informed us that she was making a special fire walk just for us, ours would be 20 feet long! One by one my fellow apprentices began to line up. There were two other women who had never walked before standing next to me. I felt a little bit of comfort in that.
As everyone began to walk the fire one at a time, my panic got worse. I had never been so afraid in my life. I began to cry and then my crying grew into hysterics. How is this possible? How is this OK? How am I not going to end up in an emergency room? As I was in this panicked state, I suddenly found myself last in line to walk. As I stood in front of those RED HOT COALS I went from panic to terror.
According to the medicine I work with, my element is FIRE and ironically, I was the most afraid in the group. To my disbelief, everyone had walked but me and no one was writhing in pain or screaming. They were all behind me waiting to go for a second, third and fourth time! Through my sobs, I began to hear a slow chant, Lisa, Lisa, Lisa. Again I yelled, how is this possible? How is this OK? Ann looked at me and said, “get out of your head and just go!”. Well, go I did. I couldn’t believe it! I just walked 20 feet of RED HOT COALS and survived! Everyone walked again and again. I watched them in awe and said to myself, thank God I did it, I will never have to do that again.
Ann coached everyone asking them what they wanted to release and one by one they yelled out, fear, anger, shame etc.. sounding like battle cries. Ann asked if there was anyone left who wanted to walk again because she was going to close down the fire walk. I will never forget this moment as long as I live, a switch went on in my head that said GO!!! So I did. I walked it again without any fear at all. I will never be the same. A warrior came out in me. If I can walk on fire, what else can I do? I am a different person now. I’ve stepped into my fire and my power. No one can take that from me, ever.
Ann asked us to breathe the heat energy from our feet up through our meridian’s and out the top of our crowns. She then let us know that any little “kisses” (code for minor blisters or burn marks) that anyone may have will be gone the next day. She also asked us to check a reflexology chart when we got home, to identify any spots on our feet and what part of the body it is associated with. My left foot did not have a mark, my right foot had two little singes and three tiny blisters under one of my toes. I drove home in my flip flops with the air conditioner on blowing cool air onto my sore foot. It wasn’t bad, just a little uncomfortable. When I got home, I went on my computer and looked up reflexology points. One spot was adrenals, one spot was shoulder and one was eyes. My adrenals failed almost two years ago, I fell on my left shoulder five years ago and it’s never been quite the same and the way I see the world is now forever changed.
My life is now richer from walking into the fire.
The next morning I woke up without a mark on my right foot. My foot was completely healed.
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Lisa Schermerhorn is a Personal Development Coach, Certified Hypnotist and Energy Medicine Practitioner.