How to do a Vision Quest
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Creating a Medicine Wheel and Undertaking a Vision Quest
(Author: Paulina Howfield, Copyright, 2001. This article was written by Paulina Howfield and cannot be reproduced or quoted from, either wholly or in part, in any way at all, without her permission.)
A Vision Quest takes a minimum of twenty fours hours – so that the initiate experiences a full cycle of energies. Traditionally they can and usually do last for much longer periods, often for several days to a week. A week can be a long commitment for anyone who is living in the 3D world, so if you do not want to make the time, I suggest you adapt this technique to embrace the schedule of your life, as the concept of a ‘Vision Quest’ is a valuable tool for helping you decode the issues of your life and can help you gain insights about your relationships, finances, job and lifestyle.
How to do a Vision Quest:
1. While a minimum of 24 hours is usual for undertaking a Vision Quest, if this is not possible commit to giving yourself at least seven hours to spend by yourself in nature.
2. Locate a place in nature where you feel peaceful and restful. It may be near the sea, in the mountains, in a large field, by a stream or river, or near a lake. Ensure you will not be disturbed – by people, traffic or technology and don’t forget to leave your ipad and mobile phone at home.
3. Make sure you have all that you need. Once you are in the medicine wheel you will stay in it till the Vision Quest is complete, so ensure you have water, any food (though neither of these are traditional necessities), a blanket or sleeping bag (if necessary), and some paper and pens/pencils to write or draw with (again not a necessity), before you enter the circle.
4. When you are sure the place is right, and you have everything you need, create your Medicine Wheel – placing a stone in the east, south, west and north. Then honour the Four Elements, the Sky and the Earth, and sit down to formulate your question. (For more information about how to create a Medicine Wheel go to: Medicine Wheel Brings Otter Wisdom)
5. Once your question is formulated, use your intention to place it into the subtle energetic realms, and then ‘give it’ to your guides and helpers. As you do, let go of any expectations of getting an answer, or a particular answer. A Vision Quest is about letting go, surrendering, listening and trusting. Do not expect miracles and major visions, just aim to be open to learning and gaining insight from whatever happens. (**Do Remember – Everything that happens to you in the Medicine Wheel is part of the question and part of the answer. So that persistent ant running up your trouser leg, or the need to empty your bladder is part of your request and part of the answer to your question. Ant medicine for example is a powerful teaching in the art of Patience.)
6. Your ‘vision’ or answer will usually come in four ways – Via personal insight and intuition; External prophetic instruction from other worldly beings; Dreaming visions; or Animal interactions. Often the answers are mythic or symbolic and for those not used to interacting with this right brain, non-verbal side of yourself, the answers you get may seem obscure or ridiculous. This is where it is very important to trust the process AND trust your insights and instincts.
7. If your vision or answer doesn’t make sense, write it down or draw it, and let the two parts of your brain – your left and right hemispheres – work together to figure it out.
How to do a Vision Quest – Points to Remember:
**Once you are in the Medicine Wheel you will stay in it, till the quest is complete, so ensure you have everything you need before you enter the circle.
**You will instinctively know when the Vision Quest is complete, what your answer is and what if anything you have to do with regard to your question.
**When you leave the Medicine Wheel at the end of the Vision Quest, dismantle the Medicine Wheel and clear the area – leave it as you found it – and offer thanks to all those who assisted you in your Quest.
**Traditionally the initiate does not partake of food or water, as going without food and water helps clear the energy field, and strengthens the relationship to the inner self, the elements and the higher realms. However, the choice to follow this rule is up to the initiate or the leader of a group Vision Quest. To avoid dehydration in the summer months, drinking water is recommended. If you do eat food, have small amounts only.
**Everything that happens to you in the Medicine Wheel is part of the question and part of the answer.
**Trust your insights and instincts, accept the vision you are given, and listen on a deep inner level to your responses. Intuitive knowing does not always express itself in ways we are familiar with.
**Family, friends, children or your job can be used as excuses to not commit to a Vision Quest, or to leave it too early. You deserve this opportunity to get closer to nature and to the ‘real’ you. Take the opportunity NOW!