“You have a vector”, she said to me. “You need to come to Atlanta, so I can remove it for you.” Then she moved onto the next person in line, and I was left to chew on her words. My momma, being the loving and supportive woman she is, offered to gift me the Atlanta workshop. Of course, the price would increase if we waited to confirm my attendance. So, we signed me up…and I let the worries about how the time off work, the cost of the flight and hotel would hit my bank account be deferred until later. I had been feeling heavy, stressed, tired, and my shoulder ached. This woman, who referred to herself as a modern day shaman, spoke in great lengths of vectors; negative entities or attachments that others send your way to harm you. Before then, I had been in an unhealthy relationship with someone, whose mother seemed happy to see me in pain. His sister told me that late at night, from under the bathroom door, she would hear her mother speaking Portuguese and doing Macomba (Brazilian voodoo) curses against me. The woman’s words echoed in my mind and I prayed that if I went to Atlanta, I would feel better.
Fast forward a few months, and I was on my way to Atlanta. I set intentions to be called on from the audience, so she could do whatever it was she was referring to upon inviting me to Atlanta for her help. After checking into the hotel, i found my front row seat early in the room we would convene in over the next two and a half days. I sat in my chair looking over the room as people filed in, the noise grew louder. There, at the back of the room, I saw a ghostly face, pale, scanning the room as if she was planning her next meal. “She looks like a vampire”, I thought to myself…then realized it was the shaman. She introduced herself and we began, as she asked if anyone needed any help, my hand shot up and my stomach did somersaults. I was about to be called on, having to speak in front of hundreds, on camera…not my favorite scenario. She called on me, and i told her immediately that I saw her in Tampa where she told me I had a vector which she would help me remove…she avoided my question, going off subject about “vectors” as I sat down and listened for that part when she would tell me to come up so she could help me. The room was filled with characters who would begin screaming and making animal noises at random times when she would work with someone’s energy field. The experience was quite intense in many ways. It all felt very surreal. With an open mind, I attended…still, I wondered, were these people authentic, or were they actors?
The day continued, we broke for lunch. I looked around as I ate my lunch. At a table close by, I noticed a woman who seemed disturbed in some way. She was twitching and blinking, in a way which reminded me of someone with Tourette’s Syndrome. She ate silently, talking to nobody, and looked around her as if she did not feel safe. My heart went out to her immediately. I went up to introduce myself, and found her to be very sweet. She told me that she had been hearing voices and felt as if something was controlling her at times, like a dark shadow she could not escape. Her voice was frail and small, almost a whisper, and she would laugh nervously at times, making her seem even more awkward.
Upon returning to our group, I again faced my fear of public speaking, raising my hand and reminding our teacher again of her promise to help me. This time I was sure to tell her that I’d been doing much work with myself over the years, and had recently received my Reiki attunement. She side-stepped my question for a second time, telling us that Reiki wasn’t strong enough to combat the energies that are coming into this planet at this time. She seemed upset at the crystals that people were wearing, suggesting that we throw them as far away from us as we could, because they weren’t helping us either. A few people were brought on stage to help clear the energy fields, but she still avoided helping me. She had a lot of “followers”, students, who she’d refer to often, always saying that “when you get to level 3 or 4, you’ll be able to do this.” I continued to listen and absorb, though everything inside of me told me to hold my space and pray often. The day ended, and we were free to enjoy our dinner. I spoke to many who said they were former Reiki practitioners who gave it up to heal in this way instead, always saying that it was much more powerful.
The next morning, I awoke early and felt the need to meditate. I imagined myself, sitting on her empty stage, looking out on the empty chairs that would soon be filled with hundreds. I prayed, calling in our angels and guardians to help us all if there was any danger here. I intended that each person in the audience would be safe and protected from any ill intentions or negativity that could possibly be sent to us. I asked that we all be protected from her, this shaman, if in fact she was not here to uplift or to help, but instead to feed off of our energies and make money off our struggles and insecurities. I spoke with my mom on the phone, telling her I was sorry if she wasted her money, and that it wasn’t turning out to be something that I felt was helping me. My mom understood, saying that it was something I needed to see for myself. She reminded me to pray, telling me that she was sending the energy of my dad to watch over me. I went for a walk in the woods around the property before breakfast. The trees were alive and i felt very connected to my strength. I found an isolated area, then realized that I was not alone. Here was the woman I had spoken to the day before, with her Peruvian boyfriend. The three of us walked on in silence, deeper into the woods. I felt the hairs on the back of my neck rise. Was this a bad idea? Nobody knew I was walking with them, alone in the woods. The energy felt eerie. Something about this man felt off to me. The woman seemed very afraid and confused. Soon enough, I reminded them that we’d better get back in time for breakfast so we weren’t late for the workshop.
The morning started out with the Shaman doing one energy clearing after another. She had a list of people to work with, and the quiet woman from that morning was one of them. She called this woman up on stage and quickly it become something like the exorcist. I’m not even kidding. The woman spoke in a different voice, with different mannerisms and it was a very convincing portrayal of possession. The shaman was “casting out” this energy and the woman would laugh at her. It actually was quite dramatic for about 10-15 minutes. At the end of all of this, the Shaman told the woman “I can’t help you, the energy is too strong” and sent her back to her seat. The others in the audience moved away from her as she found a seat.
I found an opportunity to raise my hand, telling the Shaman that I came to this gathering, specifically because she said “come to Atlanta” so she could remove the vector. She brought me on stage, and asked about anything traumatic that happened recently. I talked about my friend who had recently hung himself in his apartment and how since then, I had extreme discomfort in my neck, probably party from constant crying. She laid her hands on me then told me things about my past lives, and eventually said that my energy field was too weak and needed integration, so sent me back to my seat.
She followed this up by doing a reiki attainment Reversal, basically recalling the Reiki energy, and abandoning its use for 30 days or more to adopt her method of healing. She called many of us on the stage and said she only needed to look into our eyes to remove the attunement from each of us. I watched her look at each person…and brush right past me, but then realized her mistake, and returned to my gaze. She reminded us to resist doing any reiki symbols for 30 days to fully integrate this energy into our systems.
I got picked up from the airport and went right to a drum circle. Having time to think and process the weekend helped me to acknowledge a level of disappointment in the experience. I had a phenomenal time, learned a lot about myself, reconnected with nature, and so much more. So, why share this at all? Because, it happened, and I’m not sure exactly what did happen, but it was profound. I was very moved by this shaman woman 2 years before this encounter. Both my mother and I had profound experiences in her presence…yet this time was very different. I think this journey of asking for help from someone more qualified than me led me back to myself. I think this Shaman could be seen as a “showman” when viewed through those lenses. I think it reminded me that above all else, we have to trust our inner guide to tell us when something does or doesn’t feel right. I got into the center of circle and drew my reiki symbols…because it’s universal energy and no one can take that away from anyone…because it belongs to us all, equally. And maybe there are those who deceive others in order to gain…and maybe there’s those of us who have deceived ourselves at times. And maybe there are those of us who WANT to believe in something grander. When it comes down to it, it’s all about intention.