Sunday, November 29

Tantric Fire Ritual

When my beloved and I were on Pilgimmage in India, we worked off our karmic incompatability by practicing "Agni-Homa" or Fire Puja under the guidence of a Tantric Master.  Our vedic astrological charts revealed that we were tragically incompatablity in the area of romance. So, everyday for nearly 3 weeks we offered fire, prayers and prostrations to chandi the Moon Goddess. 

The specific ceremony we practiced in India is a very complex vedic process that begins at sunrise or sunset and lasts for many hours.  Here is a photo of the Agni temple where we practiced in South India.  It's been over 5 years and my beloved and I are still experiencing extreme harmony.

In order to realize more relief from post pardum depression, I recently resumed a simplified version of this ceremony as my morning practice for the 21 days leading up to my recent Shadow Dancing intensive with David Cates.  The results are comperably profound.  

“The fire ceremony is one of the oldest healing ceremonies known to man. In many First Nations cosmologies, the belief is held that we (and all of life) are light bound up in matter. So when you put a piece of wood into the fire, you are releasing the matter back into its essence, which is light. The fire transmutes heavy energy into light energy.”--Dr. Liana Carbon

According to many shamanic traditions there is a two-week period following a fire ceremony in which “instances of opportunity” appear like sparks or windows where you may translate your intent for healing into a whole new level of reality. Shaman Alberto Villodo PhD teaches people to "think of the fire ceremony, not as instantaneous magical change, but rather an opening for healing patterns and habits. Seize the opportunity to change your behaviors in the real world. Then let the universe take care of the details."
If you are interested in this practice, I suggest you recieve initation from a trained tantrika or Shaman.  If you have already been intiated, Here are the basic instructions adapted from the lineage of the Munay-Ki Rites as taught to me by my shaman sister Katie Weatherup. Feel free to modify it to include whatever personal deities or sacred objects offer special relevance and protection to you. Here are the basic instructions:

A~G~N~I    F~I~R~E    C~E~R~E~M~O~N~Y!
To create an opportunity to “release” and/or “call in” significant issues or energies along your life’s path.

1. Choose an intention or issues to work with. The issue should be in your mind as clear and simple as possible: single-pointed, like an arrow. Your issue cannot not involve the manipulation of another person’s will. The ceremony is done as an active meditation and focus of all your energies mental, physical, emotional and spiritual.
2. Call on a friend or teacher to support you and keep you safe during this process.
3. Prepare your ritual space and altar with personal sacred objects and A twig that is safe to burn– or paper with your writing or drawings on it.
Also set:
Epsom salts in the North
Sage in the East
A Candle with Matches or Lighter in the South
91% alcohol in the West

The Ceremony:
Shake a rattle to call in the Four Directions, Earth, Sky and the direction within.
During the invocation I usually Pour about ½” of Epsom salt into the fireproof container, Light the smudge and clear my aura, Light the candle. Pour about a tablespoon or two of alcohol into a shot glass and then hold my twig to my heart and go into meditation.
Following is my favorite invocation, but I encourage you find or speak your own.

By the Earth that is Her body,
By the Air that is Her breath,
By the Fire of Her bright spirit,
And by the living Waters of Her womb,
The Circle is Cast.

Blow into the Stick while telling the Universe what you are releasing and calling in.
When ready, pour ½ shot glass of 91% alcohol over the salt. Then light it with a match or lighter and drop the stick into the fire. (Caution: Never add more alcohol to a burning fire.)

Brush your hands over the fire and towards your each of your chakras, as if you are scooping water from a bowl.

Express your gratitude to the Divine through prayer, meditation or song. In the Hindu Tantric practice of Agni Puja, I suggest a powerful seed mantra to lord Ganesha, remover of obsticles:
Om Gum Ganapataya Namaha!
Om Gum Ganapataya Namaha!
Om Gum Ganapataya Namaha!

Let the flames becomes your teacher. The fire will change color and burns differently each time offering rich insights to your internal process. Allow it to burn out naturally. This ceremony is not meant to be sensational or dramatic, but rather a way to focus our attention and energy upon our transformation.

Close the Ceremony:
Close the sacred space by thanking all the directions.
"Praise, honor, Glory to all 4 directions,
God, Goddess and my higher self.
Go if you must, stay if you will,
I trust that all alchemy done here
is done in the highest good of all."
Or speak a closing benediction that is appropriate to your practice. Here is a beautiful depiction of Agni-Tara. The Goddess of Fire:

In Darkness and in Light,
Kamala Devi
Additional Acknowledgements for the fire ceremony to Mara Clear Spring & Katie Weatherup –

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