Healing in a Sacred Garden

All of us have fond memories of locales we've been to in life, settings where we've felt complete, at peace, and at ease. Often these are places in nature where we feel a strong sense of connection. In our meditations or in our daydreaming, we often spontaneously revisit such places by simply remembering them and by recalling what it was like to be there.

Your garden might be a locality in the everyday world that you already know and love, a place where you like to go camping or walking, or even your own backyard. It can also be a purely imaginal place that you create for yourself, one that you can simply dream into existence by using your intentions and your creative imagination. Many of us did this spontaneously as children, creating an inner place that sustained and nurtured us, like Dorothy's Oz, Peter Pan's Neverland, or Alice's Wonderland.

As your inner explorations bring your garden into increasingly sharper focus, you will discover, as have countless others before you, that it operates by four primary rules.

1. Everything in your garden is symbolic of some aspect of you or your life experience.

• You are on the Third Level, and this is the level of archetypes.

2. Everything in the garden can be communicated with, enhancing your understanding of both yourself and your life experiences.

• This is called divination. You can talk with all the elements that make up your garden, and you'll understand what they have to say, but you must first learn to listen.

3. Everything in the garden can be changed by doing gardenwork.

• You can make it just the way you want it to be, but first, you must master your emotions.

4. When you change your garden, some aspect of you or your life experience will shift in response.

• This is true magic.


The discovery that we can do gardenwork — that is, changing or altering our sacred garden to suit ourselves — has life-changing implications.

You might wish to enhance your sacred place with a bed of sunflowers or a circle of standing stones, a waterfall to sit beside or rainbows to delight the eye. Your mental soul can simply use its power of creative imagination to conjure them into existence in your garden, and they will be there from that moment forward. To be in a place of great beauty is very uplifting and may be deeply, restorative to all three levels of your being — physical, mental-emotional, and spiritual. Your garden, by its very existence, will serve you as a personal place of refuge from your everyday routine.

Remember, the body soul takes everything literally. It doesn't distinguish between reality and illusion. Your body soul perceives your garden as real.

Conversely, you might find something in your garden that you don't want there. The first rule reveals that this something is symbolic of some aspect of you or your life, while the third rule states that you can change it or even remove it from your garden. If that something is symbolic of an illness, the fourth rule affirms that when you diminish it or remove its spiritual aspect from your garden, you can affect its energetic aspect and extract it from your physical body.

Remember, when you change the symbols, the archetypes, of your inner reality, something within you or your outer world will change in response.

This is what magic really is.

The Place of Power

You may invite your spirit helpers, as well as your spirit teachers, to meet with you in your garden from time to time to accomplish various things. The more power you have, the easier this is to do, and the garden is a place where you may connect with power — big time.

The indigenous peoples know that this power is everywhere and in everything. They understand that it's highly dispersed throughout the universe, that it can be densely concentrated in certain places and objects, and that it infuses and animates all living beings with life force.

Accordingly, shamans and medicine people pay particular attention to maintaining and even increasing their personal supply of power because the effectiveness of all their practices is dependent on its presence as well as its "density." One's emotional state, mental attitudes, and personal behavior can also affect its ebb and flow, its abundance or its scarcity.

This power is analogous to the mana of the Polynesians, the chi of the Chinese, the ki of the Koreans and Japanese, the prana of the Hindus, the ashe of Santeria, the num of the Kalahari bushmen, and the Force of Obi-Wan Kenobi. It's probable that all people everywhere, in every culture, have a well-developed sense of it.

In Hawaii, the main channel through which this energy becomes available to us is the aumakua, our personal oversoul — our porthole into the overarching field of the human spirit, which is, in turn, in connection with the Source.

There are also, of course, the fields and currents of power that exist naturally within the physical environment, immediate sources that we can connect with through our body soul, directed by the intentionality and focused concentration of our mental soul.

The traditional peoples know with absolute certainty that this power is real — that it may be transmitted by touch, that it can be absorbed through proximity, and that it may be harnessed for positive or negative purposes, depending on the intentions of the one who can accumulate, manipulate, and focus it.

They also know that anyone can learn to connect with this power, and that through practice, each of us can learn to use this force to manifest something — such as healing, for example.

Before you use your sacred garden as a place of healing, it would be wise to build up your personal supply of power. This can be accomplished by doing a breathing exercise accompanied by an intention, a physical stimulus, and a visualization.

Your egoic mental soul is the source of your intertionality, so begin by using this self-aspect to create a strongly focused decision to connect with and take on a super charge of energy. Holding that intention, gently shift your focus to your breathing. Breathe slowly in to the count of four, and then breathe slowly out to another four count, completely filling and emptying your lungs with each breath.

While breathing deeply, select a physical stimulus that you can do at any time and at any place, like folding your thumb into your fist and squeezing it gently. Your body soul is highly impressed by anything physical, and this small act will alert it that you mean business. It will also cue the body soul to start pulling in energy with each breath (the intention), and since this self-aspect is the interface between you and "the force", having its full cooperation in powering up is essential.

Finally, the visualization: As you breathe in, focus your awareness on the top of your head and visualize the power streaming in as a beam of light from your oversoul, enhanced and focused by your spirit helpers. Then, as you breathe out, shift your focus to your midsection and visualize the power descending through your head, neck, and chest, coming to rest within your third chakra, which is located behind and slightly above your navel.

Continue this cycle of deep breathing for four to eight breaths, and with each, draw the power in through your head with the in-breath, and then gather it behind your navel as you breathe out. The shift of focus from your head to your navel is what does it. With each completed breath, see the light in your third chakra, your power center, grow brighter. Be alert for any physical sensations in your body indicating power augmentation.

With practice, you can do this exercise anywhere and anytime, whenever there's a need.

True Magic

Once you become power-filled, use your mental soul to create a thoughtform of something that you strongly wish to acquire or experience in your everyday reality. This is the first step to manifesting that something into your life. Remember the fourth rule — when you alter your garden, subtracting or adding something to that place of power — some aspect of you or your life will shift in response.

When you create something in your garden and then pay close attention to it every time you go there, your focused concentration causes energy to flow into the thoughtform. Energy flows where your attention goes, and with repetition, a strong energetic field will take form within and around the thoughtform — a field whose density will increase until it has the power to act as an energetic magnet that may attract the nearest available equivalent experience to you in your outer life.

Remember — the more energy you have, the more you can accomplish. It's in this manner that all true magic works. Knowing this, you can create a shift in your physical, mental, or emotional health, producing a miraculous healing from a supposedly incurable illness. If you want something strongly enough, you'll probably get it —s o be careful what you ask for.

Suppose you're suffering from something serious like cancer, Crohn's disease, AIDS, or hepatitis C. You might go into your garden on a daily basis, connect with power, then use whatever visualization you care to create to reverse the illness's effects and diminish its presence in your body.

You might invite a spiritual healing master to come into your garden to work on you — or better yet, a team of specialists. Think of all the renowned compassionate healers across the millennia: Imhotep of Egypt, Aesculapius and Hippocrates of Greece, Avalokiteshvara of India, Kwan Yin of China, Jesus of Nazareth, Galen of Pergamum, Paracelsus during the Renaissance, Florence Nightingale, and Albert Schweitzer or Mother Teresa in our own time.

Needless to say, there are countless numbers of compassionate healing spirits, and they emanate from all cultural traditions. It is through them, and through their connection with us, that we may penetrate to the original cause of our affliction, neutralize its spiritual/energetic complex (which is living within us), and embark on our path of recovery with these healers' full and loving support.

When you're in your garden, you can invite any or all of these great healers to be on your team, whenever there's a need. Their embodiments walked this earth for countless incarnations, so they all know what suffering is. We can connect with them through their oversoul fields.

In our own practice of spirit medicine, it's quite astonishing to note how often the spirit of Jesus of Nazareth will come, offering healing through the power of unconditional love, regardless of whether or not the sufferer is psychologically Christian.

Once in connection with these healing masters, you can ask them to help restore your body to a state of harmony, surrendering to their ministrations and allowing yourself to experience their compassion, as well as their healing power, in your time of need. With practice, this healing energy can also be extended to others, as we shall see shortly.

This article was excerpted from:

Spirit MedicineSpirit Medicine
by Hank Wesselman & Jill Kuykendall, RPT.

Reprinted with permission of the publisher, Hay House, Inc. ©2004. www.hayhouse.com

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About the Authors

Hank Wesselman, Ph.D.Anthropologist Hank Wesselman, Ph.D., has worked for more than 30 years investigating the mystery of human origins in East Africa's Great Rift Valley. In the 1970s, while doing fieldwork in southern Ethiopia, he began to have spontaneous visionary experiences strikingly like those of traditional shamans. His experiences are documented in his autobiographical trilogy: Spiritwalker, Medicinemaker, and Visionseeker. He is also the author of The Journey to the Sacred Garden. Website: www.sharedwisdom.com

Jill Kuykendall, RPTJill Kuykendall, RPT (Hank's wife), is a registered physical therapist and transpersonal medical practitioner who has worked in the standard Western medical paradigm for more than 20 years. In addition, she has functioned as co-facilitator for the Mercy Healing Circle, participated in the Mercy Healthcare Healing Environment Task Force as a community member consultant, and has served as a member of the Sutter Healthcare Wellness and Healing Network. She is now in private practice at the Center for Optimum Health in Roseville, California (near Sacramento), specializing in soul-retrieval work..