Welcome to Shamanics in Portugal´s Earth Spirit Journal. Our intention is to remind you our readers, friends and connections we are all part of a much larger, ever evolving community. As part of that the Journal is available on YouTube so that you can listen to it as well as view some of the scenery where our events are held.

In this first Journal of 2016 we offer here some insights into our views and experiences into the co-creation we are all part of this year – the year for Your Purpose. Recognising each of us alone is responsible for what we choose to create in our life. Only then can the Universe provide its assistance, if you so desire to allow its support in meeting your purpose?

2015 has proven to be a challenging year for many, especially on the emotional and relationship levels. The last few weeks of 2015 were no different with emotions flowing in many different directions.

In particular our darker aspects coming to remind us they are also part of all of us. Only by accepting them can we create balance within us - the purpose of shamanic practice.

2016 – an overview

2016 has begun with the first of its four Mercury retrogrades. This is one more than usual in a year, suggesting an emphasis on communication, something unexpected, certainly a need to ensure safe back up!
This current retrograde ends on 25th January and has an emphasis on easing ourselves into the physical, for only here can we create solid foundations for achieving our purpose.

The other retrogrades are in May, September and the end of December.

All four are in Earth signs, meaning support for providing stability. For the Earth holds all of life together, as well as ruling the physical body. It protects, it is the womb from which all life comes.

To understand how to connect with the creative power of the element Earth we have prepared for download a workbook 'All About Earth'.

In addition to setting out the shamanic purpose of Earth, it also details the chakra it links to and which finger indicates you have an issue with Earth. There are six exercises helping you to connect with Earth and what it means for you.

Including 'All About Earth' there are five workbooks for each of the elements.

2016 is a year for positive pragmatism, not one for using rose tinted glasses - denying the truth we can see in front of us.

It is inviting each of us to participate creatively. Making all of us leaders as to how we live our purpose. 2016 is the year in which to seek our biggest, brightest dream and bring it into the physical.

Denial of our purpose will no longer be possible in 2016. Rather it is about serving a world in flux so each of us can expand into our new vision. We need to be curious in order to discover more of the nature of our vision.

In March and September there will be a series of eclipses which will intensify for all of us seeking to know our purpose. They combine to highlight re-birth, expansion and new beginnings.

January´s energies are encouraging us all to be open to allow the new to arrive, and taking action to embed it.
To help allow arrival of the new, discover more about your purpose and the unseen world of insight, why not take action by booking one of our events?

The first event of 2016 will be 'Discovering the Inner Realms...an Introduction to Shamanism from 19th to 21st February. This will introduce you to the shamanic experience of ritual, creating sacred space, journeying, meeting your guides, power animals and much more on our experiential journey together. It will provide you with powerful, effective tools to let you tap into the unseen world for insight and healing which requires no external authority, intermediary, or even beliefs.

A copy of our All About Air workbook will be provided to all who book.

There will be a half day 'Introduction to Shamanic Journeying', on the morning of 17th March followed in the afternoon by the first 'Vision Quest' - 17th to 20th March. A complimentary copy of our All About Fire workbook will be provided to all who book.

The full list of events to September 2016 is available by visiting this link: http://shamanicsinportugal.com/2016

Thought for January

The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz

Don Miguel Ruiz is a teacher and author bringing ancient wisdom to today's world with a focus on information for reaching personal freedom and happiness.

As its title suggests, The Four Agreements offers four agreements to use as a code of conduct for your life. They come from the Toltec tradition:

1. Be Impeccable With Your Word
Speak with integrity. Say only what you mean. Avoid using the word to speak against yourself or to gossip about others. Use the power of your word in the direction of truth and love. 

2. Don't Take Anything Personally
Nothing others do is because of you. What others say and do is a projection of their own reality, their own dream. When you are immune to the opinions and actions of others, you won't be the victim of needless suffering.

3. Don't Make Assumptions
Find the courage to ask questions and to express what you really want. Communicate with others as clearly as you can to avoid misunderstandings, sadness and drama. With just this one agreement, you can completely transform your life.

4. Always Do Your Best
Your best is going to change from moment to moment; it will be different when you are healthy as opposed to sick. Under any circumstance, simply do your best, and you will avoid self-judgment, self-abuse and regret.

Don Miguel Ruiz was born into a family of healers. He was born and raised in rural Mexico by a mother who was a healer and a father who was a Toltec shaman. Don Miguel Ruiz was chosen, to carry on the family´s centuries-old legacy of healing. Living in the modern world he was swayed off this traditional path into medical school and became a surgeon.

In the late 1970s a near death experience changed his life, he was stunned by the experience and he started to devote his time in learning the mastery of the ancient healing ways of the Toltec, completing an apprenticeship with a powerful shaman. His grandfather also came to him in dreaming to also teach him the knowledge of his ancestors.

Miguel Ruiz has dedicated his life to teach and pass on the wisdom of the Toltec path.

"The Four Agreements are a tool for transformation, leading you to stop judging, mainly yourself, and to start practicing another way of life."

...The Earth Spirit Journal January 2016

The foregoing is just a taste of the Shamanics in Portugal newsletter -- The Earth Spirit Journal -- provided free to subscribers this January. Other items featured in this edition included a look at this month's 'Portuguese Power Animal -- Bat', a symbol of re-birth, as well as an article considering 'The Healing Energies of Nature'.

You can access the full volume by visiting the website at: http://shamanicsinportugal.com/newsletter/ where you can also claim your own free monthly copy by using the subscription form, and thereby also receive any of the regular subscribers-only gifts and discounts.

The team at Shamanics in Portugal are always very pleased to hear any feedback or to try and answer any question that you care to send in to them in response to Earth Spirit Journal content.

Author's Bio: 

Besides creating and running http://creatingharmonyinyourlife.com/ Gregory Reece-Smith, the author of this article, is also one of the three main guides with Shamanics in Portugal alongside Steve and Suze Plenty-Light Elliott. You can visit the team's facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/ShamanicsinPortugal, and their website at http://shamanicsinportugal.com/

Gregory is an experienced transformation facilitator, both within organisations and with individuals. As well as coaching, he conducts workshops at various locations around the world allowing participants to gain experience of how to effect a shift and bring greater clarity in their lives. Gregory´s first book 'The Seven Secrets to Living in Harmony – A Guide to Freeing YOU to Create YOUR Life', was published by Divine Time Books and is currently available via Amazon: http://www.amazon.com/dp/b00reowcry.