Here is part two of the past life I posted yesterday. It is time to go on my journey. I will go with my son, and his friend. Both are warriors in our clan. My youngest daughter and her husband will come. My middle daughter is heavy with child and must stay behind. My husband must tend to the crops or he would go as well. A handful of others join us. We leave our gentle valley and enter a world I have never been before. I am still irritated but I am happy for the adventure. I collect plants and interact with my daughter as we travel. Our destination is not far, only a few days travel. We are here. A small settlement that has grown with the influx of travelers. I do not know what I am supposed to do but I present myself to the hall of the king. He doesn't seem any grander than our simple chief but what do I know. I am told to wait with the other practitioners. I go as I am directed. I don't know how I fit in with these people. Some are creating fire out of nothing. One man uses colored powder to make smoke. A woman is covered in snakes and bird feathers. I clutch my small bag of plants. I am so angry again. I am not magic. My clan has made a fool of me. I will make a fool of me. A sense of dread starts in my chest and fills me until all I feel is overwhelming hopelessness. I try to hide in the back unnoticed. At some point a great shaman enters the hall. He is tall and commanding. He announces himself. He is important. He makes a great show for the king and those assembled. He has traveled far to present himself and prove himself the best. I watch him in awe. I am thankful he is here, as now maybe I can sneak out and go home. I go back to my clansmen and tell them I cannot do this. My daughter is irritated with me and promises to accompany me tomorrow. Force me is more like it. I know she will not let me escape a second time. The next day we arrive at the hall of the king and I try to take my place in the back. My daughter will not allow it. The usually calm and gentle girl cajoles me to sit at the front. One so I can see the other magicians but also can I can be seen. I don't have the same faith as her but I do not argue. Today progresses in a similar fashion as the day before. Conjurers, healers, and shamans all make their way before the king and crowd. Some to oohs and aahs, other to laughs and jeers. My daughter is not impressed. A competent medicine woman in her own right she finds flaws with the work of these others. She whispers things in my ear like, "You could have done that better," or, "That's only rose water! I can smell it from over here!" At some point a sick man is brought into the hall. The king calls on the healers to see who can cure him. At the insistence of my daughter I join those assembling around the man. The important shaman from the day before is there. He is making a great show of how he is all who is needed to heal this man. I watch him. He sets his things on a table and starts creating some sort of potion. I see his ingredients and watch his process. If he sees me he pays me no mind for I am unimportant. Nothing he is doing looks that remarkable. If anything it looks more like a pitiful meal than a healing tonic. I continue to watch him. Not once has he even asked what is wrong with the man. He just decided to do something and is now creating what appears to be nonsense. Part of me wants to be angry. The other part wants me to be quiet and watch this important powerful man. The shaman gives the potion to the man and tells him to drink. Something is wrong with the mans throat. I can see the obvious effort it takes him to swallow. The shaman says some incantation and then encourages the man to dance. An observable measure of his power over the forces of life and death. The sick man obeys but I cannot see any improvement for myself. The crowd cheers him on as the shaman looks on in pride. Like a fat cat who has caught and killed a bird. The king congratulates the shaman and the sick man is ushered from the room. I am in disbelief. This is all a game. A show. A sham. I see the shaman in a new light. This sham-man. How is he a shaman. Who has he helped. Is this why he is here and not with his own people. I look at the conjurers and healers differently now. I understand what my daughter was talking about. I am angry now. I am angry at these "magicians" and I am angry with myself. I go back to sit with my daughter. I tell her to find the sick man and actually treat him. She agrees and leaves to find him. I still do not know what to do. This is just a spectacle but my craft is not something I can show. It is practical, it is real. I want to go but something inside me says stay. Sometime later there is a commotion outside. We can hear a woman in emotional distress. A man enters the hall and lets the king know that something is wrong with his son. The small boy has eaten something and is declining fast. The mood is instantly transformed as the king leaves the room. Moments later the king is carrying the little child and lays him in the center of the hall. He motions the great shaman over. I follow even though I have not been included. I know in my heart that this boy will die with out proper care. Care the shaman is clearly not able to give. I stand by the mother trying to give comfort. I ask her what happened. She tells me her son was gathering fruit with friends when he collapsed. I ask her to show me the fruit. She has a maid show me as she doesn't want to leave his side. The maid brings me to the baskets the boys brought back. I sift through the fruit and find the problem right away. He has been poisoned. The small boy must have confused the two berries he was picking as one and the same. One sweet and tart the other sweet and deadly. I go back to the hall to see things no better then they were when I left. I look to the boy, who has impossibly grown more pale. His breath small and shallow. I look to the other healers confused. Why are they not doing anything? The great shaman is flicking drops of who knows what on to the boy while saying some incantation. I do not claim to know the divine will of the gods or spirits but I can see nothing helpful in what he is doing. I open my bag of plants and pray I have something I can help him with. Nothing. I find nothing. I mean I have some of this and that but nothing to remedy this situation. I didn't bring them. I had no need. I didn't and couldn't know what I would need when I came here. I move to the boy and tell his mother and father about the fruit. Their son has been poisoned but I don't have any way to save him. The shaman is not pleased by my interruption but he does not stop. The king asks me if I could save him with the right plants. I tell him I could try but that even then he may still die. At the king's orders the other practitioners open their bags and sacks to me. They are not happy to have me pilfering their supplies and I must admit I am embarrassed to do so. I push that aside and keep my mind only on the boy. I ask the people assembled to lay their plants and herbs on the table so I can inspect them. Some are familiar like old friends. Others are new and exotic. They all hum and sing with life. I cannot find what I am looking for. I have some but not all. This wont work. Magic needs all the ingredients. I ask the plants to help me. They always have before. The hum around the plants changes. Some grow loud while others get quiet. The ones in my hands are quiet so I put them back. I gather the loudest and start my work. I do not know any of these plants. They are familiar, like something from a dream but they are strangers. I listen to them and they tell me how to make my potion. Some of this and more of that. The tiniest pinch of this. All of that. I go to my work. This is my magic. I make three mixtures. When I am done I give a small portion to the king and tell him to feed it to the boy. The first mixture causes the boy to vomit. It is dark and foul smelling. I have them give the boy water. He vomits again and this is clear. I give the second mixture. His body trembles and then is calm. His breathing a fraction more relaxed. I tell them that we must give him a dose every hour or so until morning. The third mixture we will give him tomorrow if he survives. The shaman is still acting but no one is paying him any attention. I relax. My show is over. I am sad and frustrated that I participated with this, though I am glad I was here to help this child. To help this king and his family. When asked about it later I give all credit to the magic of the plants. The boy lives, but I humbly shift the focus elsewhere. There are times when my husband or children tease me about the one time I used my magic to save a king's child. I tell them that I don't have magic. They should be quiet and get back to work. But I smile to myself and I know that I did. Thanks for joining me for this weeks past life. Follow this is with how this applies to my life now in Separating the Magic from the Person. If you are interested in getting a past life reading or learning how to do a past life reading go HERE!