You probably recognize that your spirit (some call it soul) is separate from your physical body. When you leave your physical body and go out into the astral planes, the physical part is left idling while the soul travels. I use the word soul because our friends in the First Nations tend to use it instead of spirit; spirit is usually reserved for the Great Spirit (otherwise Manitou).
It is a strong belief among many groups that the soul can be split into many parts and that, whether you realize it or not, you may leave such parts at distant places or with people you love. You are still connected to such parts with what has come to be called an aka thread.
“Or ever the silver cord be loosed or the golden bowl be broken …” and so on in old poetry.
So did you ever think that your soul could be split into several pieces–that you could give away, as it were, fragments of yourself and still limp along?
Often human beings may leave behind or give away parts of their soul, perhaps to a former lover or to a deceased relative. Soul retrieval is one name for the experience in which you may get back that fragment and become whole again.
The underlying idea here is that your soul is divisible, and that when you fall deeply in love with someone you give away part of your soul to that person–and you probably receive part of their soul in return. Many of you have had such an exchange. So what happens if the relationship ends? “Oh, when s)he left, I felt as if part of myself went with them!” It’s the stuff, all too familiar, of unnumbered love stories and torch songs, non? –that feeling of loss associated with any major separation, whether it be by death, divorce, military events, or even when a child goes to college. You feel as though there’s a hole in your life.
Such a hole is the missing part of your soul that has remained with the Other. When you meditate on the over-all situation and on the idea of becoming whole again, you can get over that feeling of loss in a more rapid, more wholesome way.
Our friends of the First Nations say a thread remains, that joins you to any part of your soul that you have left somewhere, and that in meditation you can follow the thread and find the piece of your soul that is missing–and can bring the fragment back with you to become whole again. This is a straightforward approach to what a psychologist or counselor works toward with you in grief counseling … though it does not happen in a single sitting, goodness knows.
In meditation you can grief-counsel yourself (thinking of your loss in terms of a piece of your soul that is temporarily lost or absent).
We have had experiences with work such as this. One which was truly amazing was with a young woman who had been comatose for six weeks. With the aid of a shaman we communicated with her astrally as she lay in her comatose state and told her to follow the spirit thread leading to the place where she had left her soul. It turned out that she had been driving late at night with a carload of her young friends, that she had missed a curve and had run head-on into a tree. A very good friend had been killed. She blamed herself for the accident, so deeply indeed that her soul had remained at the scene though her body had been carried to hospital.
In less than 15 minutes the shaman had helped her release her self-blame and had talked her out of her comatose state, by leading her soul to rejoin its body. She became whole again.
When you lose someone, you need to think in terms of becoming whole again. Dwelling on what you have lost and weeping over old mementoes and such things doesn’t hack it. You have to take a pro-active approach and determine that you will get all pieces of your soul back and go on with a full life. Indeed, the most wholesome step to take is to purge your dwelling of any and all traces of the departed one: all photos, artifacts, old garments and possessions … when you can bear to do so, get rid of it all.
I, Yvonne, promise you this: Your tears are the first sign that your healing has begun.