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Virtual Shaman
by Heinani Huet aka Lois Stokes

Changing Realities
I began a new journey into a reality called Second Life. I received the calling: "You can be someplace else. You can be someone else and you can look as you dream yourself to be. It is your dream and you can choose who you are, how you look, where you live and what you do. You can change whatever you create as many times as you want. You can change your personality and your interests in fact you can be more than one person if and when you choose and you can fly!" This was my invitation and I accepted.

I came into this life as a newbie, my movements awkward as I began to explore this new landscape. Navigation was my initial obstacle. My computer and internet speed were slow and I often found myself frozen or crashed. Unable to move, I found myself frustrated with this new experience. I wanted to be in control and I found that I wasn't. It was a shamanic journey into the underworld of Milu. I had obstacles to meet and to move beyond. This test was met with a simple restart on my computer. When tired of restarting, I simply quit the session for the day. This would do until I could get a first level fix with a high speed connection and a faster computer. I also learned that the SL program, as was myself, in a process of updates and fixes.

My next obstacle was communication. Still unsure of myself, I could not initiate conversations with other avatars. I did not know the rules and I lacked confidence to make my own. So I silently moved around orientation island sometimes bumping into other avatars and unable even to type in a simple word like "sorry." I wanted to be invisible. Where was my invisibility cloak? I practiced talking to trees and waterfalls and flowers. One day an object talked back. It was a beginning.

Then there was the problem of my appearance. I wanted to change the way I looked. I wanted my outward form to reflect my inward desires. I needed to make the invisible visible. First I had to learn how to make changes. Change-making takes a certain amount of risk taking. I was afraid to lose what I had. Could I reverse my decisions and go back to the beginning again? This obstacle was met by making small changes until I was satisfied with my temporary look long enough to go out into the world.

The next challenge was to step off orientation island where I was surrounded by newbies like myself and integrate myself into the bigger world called the Mainland. I stopped off on Help Island, still trying to get a knowledge base that would help me in my future adventures. I learned how to get information about the things in my environment and about the people surrounding me. I learned how to accumulate possessions. I went on a spree of collecting that later would almost be my demise. Many things in this world are free and I could not resist having it all.

Questions started to appear. Do I bring some of my Real Life (RL) fears into Second Life (SL)? If I start making changes and doing new things in SL will I transfer these changes to my RL?

Pali Uli
Aloha International through the direction of Dr. Serge Kahili King bought an island called Pali Ulu. Our own Huna Village was developed on it. My very first explorations took place there. I felt safe among the familiar huts on this tropical island. The first visitors were members of the Huna Fellowship and I began my first conversations there. There was an area called Melemele that was just for members to explore, enjoy and create. I met friends there and felt comfortable among people who took the vow to make this world a better place. Serge held a Talk Story one Sunday morning and fellowship members from around the world attended. I learned how to add people to my friends list. We were all new to this virtual world and laughed at ourselves as we flew through walls, floors and ceilings. At this time voice was activated and we could listen and talk to each other as if in RL. Well almost, there were a few bugs that had to be worked through. I soon purchased a headset and microphone to make communicating easier. Our aka cords became stronger as we gathered. I connected with friends Barbla from Switzerland, Miko from Japan and Kahu Akina from New Zealand. I am typically a person who never uses the telephone and rarely initiates correspondence. In SL I found myself instant messaging and chatting. A new pattern emerged that might effect other changes in my life.

I began experimenting with the many objects that I found in my extensive inventory. This inventory was made huge by my visits to Freebie Warehouse and Freebie Planet. Places where you could unload crates of clothes, jewelry, furniture and more. The best part was that everything was free L$O just click on buy and it was yours. The bad part was that my inventory soon became out of control with stuff that I would never use. I began to delete things that were not useful to me at the moment. I returned to Melemele and rezed objects (click and drag to the ground) to see what mysteries lay in those crates of mine. I found refuge in one of the huts that became my dressing room. All I had to do was open the crate, select something and click on wear. Instant clothes and they fit perfectly. Something that is not so easy for me to do in real life. Change is easy here and yes you can usually revert to the old and comfortable if you choose to. However, it does take developing a knowledge base to make you familiar with the rules of this world

The World Is What You Think It Is
There still was much to learn. Serge lent me his books on SL and I read them from cover to cover. A Real Life practice that has been with me since childhood.

It was during this period that I found out that things were not always what they seemed. Kahu Akina and I met at a beach. When I arrived he was floating in the air above his beach towel. I loved the effect and asked him how he did it. He said that he was not floating and that what I experienced was only my view of things. The world is truly what you think it is. This has happened before when Kealoha Huet and I sat in different rooms and went from his computer to mine and saw differently.

Everything Is Working Out Perfectly
I was in a hut in Melemele trying out different appearances. I clicked on what was called a particle cape. I thought that it would be a sparkling cape that I could wear. When I made it appear it sent a wave of particles that took the form of moving blue specks from within the hut to outside its walls. Cool I thought until I tried to take it back. No matter what I did I could not control the action that I initiated. I could not delete the particle cape. It wasnÕt until the next day that I traced the cape back to its owner and found the secret to unlocking the cape. The experience was one of learning about transparencies and all was well after all.

"Your World, Your Imagination"
Imagine a world where you point your finger at something and abracadabra something appears. Point again and its gone. Move something from the invisible to the visible realms and back again. ItÕs a simple keyboard stroke and mouse click and magical things begin to happen. Walk through walls, underwater and ground. Fly above the stars. Teleport from one place to another. Fall from a cliff, brush yourself off and walk on. Die and come back to life. Come back to life as another person or an animal. Swim without getting wet. Eat and Drink with no caloric consequences. Do what you dare to do with no fear. Possess magical sight and look through walls, zooming in at a distance. Build castles in the sky. Create and live your dream. Set your wildest imagination free. Teleportation, astral travel, bilocation, shapeshifting all are possible. Living in Second Life is living the shamanic way.

Everything Is A Dream
To the Shaman everything is a dream and because everything is a dream, you can change your dream and change your reality. ShamanÕs go in and out of different levels of reality. In our tradition we talk about the 4 levels. In Second Life you can experience these levels. In the first level of reality everything is separate. You are different in personality and dress from the avatar standing next to you. You are different from the tree you are standing under and the bird that is flying by. You move differently and you communicate differently. Science has studied these differences and you can be affected by these differences as you interact with the environment created within SL.

On the second level the shaman sees everything as connected. This is the telepathic area where psychic skills are observed. Here you can talk to the trees and they will talk back. You can open a chat window and open the connection. Using the magical symbols of the alphabet you can read the mind of someone worlds away. I enjoy going to a special place set aside for Alakai (Spiritual leaders of Huna International). It is an island with a fire pit and hot pool. I go there to relax. I can sit in the hot steamy waters and heal. The sound of the bubbling jacuzzi calms me as the steam blankets me in comfort. I identify with my avatar and can feel the relaxing effect on my Real Life body. We also have a waterfall that we can stand under and doing so helps to make me feel refreshed.

On the third level the shaman sees everything as a dream where you can create whatever you imagine. This is what SL is all about - Creation. Using what is called prims, you can build anything that you can imagine. The creators of second life have given us the tools to do this and it is amazing to experience what people have dreamed up. Life is a journey and an adventure. Read the omens and symbols and determine the path that you are to walk. If you see the world as a dangerous place then you will find that place in SL. If you see life as a loving place then you will find love reflected in your SL experiences. When looking at life as a journey and adventure, SL opens magical portals for you to explore.

On the fourth level the shaman can become one with something. This is the mystical level and for the shaman it is one of shapeshifting, grokking and astral travel. In SL you can become an avatar with animal characteristics called a furry and in SL you can fly. I have become one with my avatar. If someone was to bump into me I physically react with a slight startle.

Shapeshifting
I am born again over and over in an endless array of costumes. Change comes more easily to me now as I realize that nothing is really lost, just different. I have endless possibilities if I dare to take a risk. At first I took small steps in making just slight changes to my appearance. With an increased knowledge base, I became braver. I am now exploring the question that when I assume a new body in SL (second life), what are the characteristics that I will mimic in RL (real life)?

Grokking
I copy the patterns of water in SL just by standing under a waterfall and feeling the water flow with no conscious attempt at change. I walk away refreshed as the obstacles of my day are washed away.


I imitate wind

I role play earth

I adopt and become the pattern of fire. As I become one with it, the resonance that I have developed will make changes in me. In a long distance healing mode the changes in my behavior will have an effect on the behavior of a fire that I am focusing on.

Astral Travel
I can fly. Not only that, I can teleport to another location worlds away. As I sit in Real Life I bi-locate to another reality in Second Life. I can even hold more than one conversation at a time. Communicating with three avatars, located in three different SL locations, who have real lives in three different countries, worlds apart. We share a common SL time but have different zones of time in real life. Simultaneously today is their yesterday.

I am a virtual shaman in a Second Life world. Do you hear the call of different realities? Are you ready for another kind of adventure? Please join me in the Huna Village. I will be happy to help you with your explorations. Go to our Pali Uli page for information on how to get there, and to My Link to see how I can help you.

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