Continuing my story of my personal journey on my heathen path, I continued to learn various magical basics, not exclusively heathen. During the early 1990s, I studied the book The Way of the Shaman, and met a lynx.
A quote from my memoir, Greater Than the Sum of My Parts:
“I worked through the exercises in a little paperback book called the Way of the Shaman. From it I learned to read auras. At first I had difficulty with the concept of aura reading, but then I figured out what it really was. Learning aura reading is training one’s intuition to give information in visual form. The color spectrum is capable of carrying more shades of meaning in a single data point than is a gut feeling. It’s like trading Morse code for a videophone. After that it was only a matter of practice, and in a few weeks I went on to the next exercise in the book.”
I had already connected to a spirit animal, cats of various species, but after reading that book, I went on a trip to Montana and connected powerfully with a lynx. The excuse for the trip was wildlife photography. I connected profoundly with an animal spirit that united the Native totem spirits, the Eastern martial arts animals, and the heathen bersarkrgangr animals, although I would not know about the martial of bersarkrgangr for another few years yet.
I photographed the lynx jumping over a log. The photo accompanying this post is one of the pictures of that very lynx, which I took on 35mm slide film.
A quote from my memoir:
“The lynx got tired and sat in the shade a while, panting, its cream and red-brown fur a liability in the summer sun. It was not much bigger than my own cat at home, and I had to remind myself that it was not in fact a domestic cat and I should not pet it, despite the temptation. As I stood watching the lynx, it looked back at me with spring green eyes. I did not let myself physically move to touch it, but my feelings went out to it, to her, I realized, perfect hunter, emblem of every cat spirit I had ever known, from the lion roar of shenai practice to the little house cat spirit in the field on my first day at college. She united the big cats and the small, the tiger of martial arts with the sweet kitten who comforted me when my father died. I forged a connection with Lynx, not just this lynx but the archetypal Lynx. She united within me all the cat spirits I had seen and heard, every catlike instinct I possessed, and something more, something hidden deep within.”