Healing and Transformation With The Wild Earth Animal Essences

The following is an excerpt from Daniel Mapel's book "Into the Heart of the Wild: Healing and Transformation With the Wild Earth Animal Essences."

How Are Animal Essences Made?

The animal essences are made in a ceremonial process in a wilderness area of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia. This has long been a place of power for me. So when the call came for me to begin, I knew immediately that this was where I would do the fundamental work of making the essences.

My deep connections with wild animals, with the Earth, and with Native Americans have all served to inspire the development of the very personal ceremony that I use to create the animal essences.

Wild Earth Animal Essences


Stan Grof, one of the pioneers of the transpersonal psychology movement over the past 40 years, says something very wise that seems fitting to share:

"In a yet unexplained way, each human being contains information about the entire universe or all of existence, has potential experiential access to all its parts, and in a sense is the whole cosmic network, as much as he or she is just an infinitesimal part of it, a separate and insignificant biological entity." -- Dr. Stan Grof, "Modern Consciousness Research and Human Survival," in REVISION, Vol. 8 no 1, summer-fall 1985.

It is this innate ability that each of us has—to connect with all aspects of creation—that allows me to do the work I do, in combination with my own personal experiences of the animals and the work I have done on my own personal healing journey.

The prime ingredient involved in developing these remedies is the power of Intent. This is the creative building block of creation, and setting a clear intention to connect with a specific animal in the making of an essence is the fundamental first step.

The ceremony itself is quite simple; an observer looking at the forest clearing where I work would not see a great deal going on. That's because the process of attuning to the spirit of the animal involved happens in a very quiet, meditative, and internal way. I first collect a small bowl of water from the stream nearby and place it at the center of the clearing.  I then step beyond the edge of the clearing, and I begin the ceremony by walking in a large circle—approximately 100 meters in diameter—around the clearing.  I meditate as I walk in a series of ever smaller circles, until, after about 15 minutes, I find myself at the center of the clearing beside the bowl of water.  Throughout the meditation, I connect and pray to the animal I am invoking, telling it that I am here to serve in this way if it wishes to share its gifts with humankind. By the time I reach the center of the circle, I have touched a place inside me where the animal and I are one. At this time, I experience the energy of the animal finding its newest abode in the bowl of water at the center of the circle.

During the meditation walk, I may hold a small feather or hair sample to bring me into deeper physical contact with the energy of the animal. However, this sample is not placed in the bowl and is used solely to help me attune to the energy of the animal. (The samples have been gathered without harming any animals.)

When I feel that all is complete, I proceed to walk out in reverse from the way I came in, this time through a series of ever larger circles, until I return to the edge of the largest circle where I began. As I walk these circles in reverse on the way out, I slowly feel my everyday state of consciousness and mind returning to me, and I am deeply grateful to have shared in the beauty of this experience.

When I began developing these essences, I was amazed to see that they really work, and part of me is still in awe of the fact that remedies created by me in this way are truly effective. Yet feedback from around the world continues to affirm that these remedies are valuable to many people in their emotional and spiritual journeys, and for that, I am grateful to be a part of it.

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