WOMEN’S EMPOWERMENT THROUGH
By Celeste Adams
I was drawn to the idea of firewalking because I wanted to make certain changes in my life and I thought that the challenge of walking across a hot-bed of burning coals would help me break through the limitations I was experiencing. Manifesting the things you want in life comes from taking action, having unshakable intention and focus, and being open to receiving the magic and miracles that come your way. Firewalking combined all of this for me: You can’t wish yourself across the coals, you have to take action and walk; you have to focus your energy so you don’t get burned; and there is magic and mystery in discovering the ability to do something that seems impossible.
The idea of attending a firewalk came to me after breaking boards with my hand, in a workshop given by a martial artist. The first time I tried to break the board, I nearly fractured the bones in my hand. It was not until I let go of the idea that the board was an obstacle and saw it as something my hand could pass through effortlessly, that I was able to break it. Realizing what could be accomplished through a shift in perception meant a lot to me, and it is a lesson that can be used in all areas of life.
I signed up for a week-long fire initiation program at Sundoor Foundation for Transpersonal Education, led by Peggy Dylan. She shares a perspective prevalent among firewalkers that it is necessary for a person to raise one’s energy to the level of the fire in order to pass over the coals without getting burned. In addition to interpersonal exercises and games, we broke arrows and bent rebar through focused intention, rappelled 180 degrees down a cave wall, and did powerful breathing exercises. For many, the group support was essential in helping people to find the courage to do things they never before thought possible.
In the evenings we made a bonfire and a prayer was said before the fire was lit. We watched as it burst into flame and then waited about 2- 1/2 hours until the fire tender announced the coals were ready. We then took turns raking the coals and stood silently around the red-hot bed until the first person walked across. The firewalk had a different mood each night of the week. One night we listened to a recording of the African drummer, Olatunji, and I danced over the coals, wanting to sink into a trance state that would erase my surroundings and transport me into another level of awareness. On another night, we did it in the style of the Tibetan monks who cross the coals one hundred and eight times while chanting.
The miracle of firewalking offers an opportunity for extraordinary change in everyone’s life and people often experience magical transformations after the firewalk. My point of focus during each firewalk was to gain greater insight and vision, to understand how to pull the fragments of my story together and complete my novel. Immediately after my return from the fire-walk, a job ended that I didn’t really enjoy and I received a large check that enabled me to complete my novel. My way of keeping the lessons of the firewalk alive is by wearing a medallion of a Rune around my neck which is the sign for initiation. When I hold it in my hands I remind myself to keep the energy of the fire burning bright inside of me and to be my own fire tender.
Several wo-men in my group spoke of the empowerment they experienced in their lives as a result of firewalking. Sue, a Chiropractor, said after the firewalk she had a vision that confirmed the new direction she was taking in her life. Christiane, an Engineer said, “Since my first walk, I have been able to tap into the energy of the walk in many situations: when I have something ahead of me that causes some insecurity, anxiousness, nervousness, etc. I can go back and picture the bed of coals in front of me, feel what it was like to walk across, and with that, bring the present situation into a less ‘difficult’ perspective. The fire showed me anything is possible.” Julia described a profound breakthrough she made in dealing with shyness, which limited her opportunities in life. After her first firewalk, the group returned to celebrate. Loud music was played and people began dancing wildly. For the first time, Julia was able to find the freedom within herself to set aside her self-consciousness and she began dancing on a chair that faced eighty people. “I faced all those people and immediately overcame so much more than the terror of those fires. It was one of the greatest gifts of my life.”
The firewalk is one of the most amazing tools available for personal transformation. It can lead one to experience untapped potential and abilities, open up doors that previously seemed closed, and teach you the power that focus and intention has in transforming your life. Peggy Dylan, founder of Sundoor, has spent the past thirty years in a serious study of the effects of firewalking, which has harvested clear results about the power and effectiveness of this practice. The Firewalking Initiation Training program is offered in countries around the world and there are several programs for women only.
To find out more about The Sundoor Foundation for Transper-sonal Education, you can phone: (800) 755-1701 or e-mail: email@example.com , or check their website: www.sundoor.com
Celeste Adams is a Writer/Filmmaker living in Santa Monica, who is using the lessons of the firewalk to complete her novel “Daughters of Babylon.”
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