The Vision Quest

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The Vision Quest - Leyla Najma's Belly Dance BlogOne day years ago my soul spoke to me……….she was hungry. It was not a hunger that anything from this world could satisfy, it was a hunger that filled me and made me empty inside. When your soul speaks to you, she whispers in your ear constantly until you feed her. As the days passed I couldn’t rest and my nights were sleepless. I would wake up and look at the stars and moon wondering what was wrong with me.

I was told that I was shedding the old me like a snake sheds its skin and preparing for the new me. For my completion into the new me, I was told I would need to do a vision quest. It was believed Spirit wanted to talk to me and I needed to present myself to the Grandfathers.  This is not an easy task as I found out. I made Spirit pouches and each one had a prayer in it. The Spirit pouches were filled with tobacco and there were over 200 tied together to create a continual prayer and circle. I than had to go into the mountains and find my sacred space where I would present myself to Spirit.

To prepare for the presentation you fast and meditate, thinking of questions. My soul was so hungry that I had hundreds and hundreds of questions. I thought how could Spirit (God) answer all my questions?

The morning came when I was led to my sacred space following a Medicine man who was to watch over me through out my vision quest.I watched the Medicine man walk away and I looked around seeing only trees, hearing birds in the distance feeling naked and alone.

My vision quest was for 3 days and 3 nights with only water and no food. As I sat in my circle, I realized that my soul had lost her voice. She didn’t know where to begin or how to present herself to Spirit. I realized how insignificant I really was….perhaps this was because nature is one of his greatest masterpieces and she surrounded me showing no mercy.

The days were hot and the nights were cold and there I sat in my sacred space trying to talk to Spirit. How could my soul lose her voice? Was it that I didn’t feel worthy to be in his presence?
I slept restlessly and found that the nights were full of little surprises. Little pebbles were being thrown my way with little foot steps running away from me. At moments I thought I heard laughter and whispering from all around me. The darkness engulfed me and offered no refuge. Was that a growl? Was that a branch snapping in the distance?

My mind told me to get up and run but my soul said to stay.  By the third day I was running a fever and I lay down and finally my soul found her voice and said, “You know already what I ask, tell me what I need to know”.
The light changed and as I looked in front of me a woman in white walked up to me. She smiled and told me she was my spirit guide. Her hair was in long black braids and she wore feathers in her hair. She said that my questions had been answered that I only had to look in my heart to find them. She said that I had completed my vision quest and Spirit was pleased. She gave me my new Medicine name Morning Bear and she than put her hand on my forehead and I awoke from my vision.

I stood up realizing I could go now and noticed that there was a quiet calm around me. It was as if nature herself recognized the new me. The Medicine man knew my vision quest was over and was waiting for me. He smiled and that was all that was communicated between us. I looked back at my sacred space one more time and realized that the old me was still in the circle. It was good to let her go.

I have taken this gift with me through out my dancing. I share this story with all you so that through out your journey in belly dance you will know it is only natural to grow and change. Create a sacred space and remember to ask Spirit for guidance.  And sometimes it’s OK to let go.

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About Leyla Najma
Lifelong professional Belly Dancer dedicated to providing "Belly Dance Instruction That Is Easy To Understand And Learn That Connects The Dots"

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