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The Sacred-Ritual Walks

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The Sacred-Ritual Walks

Copyright © 2009

By

Fernando Davalos

All Rights Reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means; electronic, mechanical, or otherwise, other than for “fair use”, without the written consent of the author.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Masculine Walk: Metropolitan Cathedral – Zapopan Basílica

Chapter 2: Feminine Walk: Zapopan Basílica – Metropolitan Cathedral

Chapter 3: Feminine Walk: Metropolitan Cathedral-Virgin of the Eagle’s

Chapter 4: Masculine Walk: Virgin of the Eagle’s – The Eye of the Eagle

Chapter 5: Masculine Walk: The Eye of the Eagle – The Ixtépete

Chapter 6: Feminine Walk: The Ixtépete – Zapopan Basilica

Chapter 1

Masculine Walk: Metropolitan Cathedral – Zapopan Basílica

(21^st^ Day of the month)

Four sonorous strokes of a bell announced the early hour of the dawn in a deserted and silent avenue 16 de Septiembre in the city of Guadalajara. A compact group of New Way gathered in the centenary walls of its Metropolitan Cathedral to start a sacred-ritual walk. At the site were present Félix, Alicia, Natalia, Tomás, Krista, and Agustín. Trembling due to the cold morning and the lightness of our white cotton attires, we placed our foreheads in devotion and respect on the cold walls of the Cathedral and listened in expectation to the warm and emotional prayer that Krista dedicated to the Virgin of Zapopan asking for her help and protection in our imminent journey.

 

 

It was the 21st day of the month, and we were starting another sacred-ritual walk that should take us through the masculine route that goes from the Metropolitan Cathedral to the beautiful Zapopan Basilica; a journey we estimated of around 10 or 12 kilometres long, and that shouldn’t take us more than two and a half hours.

Félix accepted to lead our group that day and Tomás was closing the compact formation. The very early hour of the day obeyed among other reasons to the need to perform this walk in complete silence and total concentration because we were still struggling to find the original sacred route used by warriors of ancient times. We hoped to avoid night pedestrians or intoxicated walkers, even though there were no guarantees for this, in a walk on these characteristics.

 

 

-Is everybody ready? – Félix asked.

 

 

-Ready! – Was the answer coming from our group, and without further ado, our guide started with enthusiasm a silent walk. Faithful to my custom, as soon as we turned to the right from avenida 16 de Septiembre to take avenida Juárez, I sent a mental salute to our spiritual guide to inform him we were starting another ceremonial walk.

 

 

Juarez Avenue looked at that early hour deserted and silent because the newspaper carriers were not at the sidewalks yet and to our own fortune, there were not active pedestrians. Our group was walking in a compact formation looking for the best pace and following the vigorous walk that our guide impressed in our path since the beginning.

 

 

As a good and seasoned walker, Félix knew that we had to advance as much as we could during the early hours of our journey to be able to achieve the necessary degree of inner silence we needed because as dawn approached, the city noises will irremediably increase considerably.

 

 

There were in this Masculine route several segments or “portals” that we had to surpass by walking in total silence, and these should take us little by little from one to another subtle but effective higher state of consciousness. If we managed to achieve this, it will be possible to find a little more about the secrets of this route and to clean it more effectively.

 

The few aspects that my awareness could perceive were telling me that the first segment of the walk is constituted by the section formed all along avenida Juarez from avenida 16 de Septiembre to avenida Federalismo with the beautiful Parque de la Revolución acting as a transitional space and link towards the next segment. The second segment is a section formed by avenida Juarez that goes from avenida Federalismo to avenida Chapultepec (or Lafayette) which have to my own particular opinion from its section of avenida Normal to avenida Niños Héroes, lots and interesting secrets that I hope future groups like ours will manage to discover.

 

 

The best resource to adequately transcend these first two segments and metaphorically surpass these first two “portals” was at least for New Way, the practice of praying with fervour while walking, in the authentic Dominican spirit of “ora et labora”. As I learned it by watching my companions, and practicing it personally, with this method, we achieved the double effect of settling down our noisy minds while energizing our bodies at the same time.

 

 

My perception during the first two portals of the walk is the normal acknowledgement of the personalities of those who walk with me, my friends, Natalia, Alicia, Félix, Tomás, and Krista. However, curiously enough, once the two initial portals of the route finished, my companions ended up turning into something else, into an indissolubly part of my own self, into members of the same spirit, into ancient warriors with whom I feel honoured to share the walk.

 

 

The third segment of this sacred-ritual walk is always one of peace and fullness because at this point, and having transcended the first two portals, our group New Way advanced as one sole being with neatness and precision, and all its members gradually received spontaneous gifts of intuition and illumination personally and as a group. This section was going alongside avenida Vallarta, which is the continuation of avenida Juarez, from avenida Chapultepec passing under the Arcos monument to the Glorieta Minerva, which is an arbour for the merging of the avenues Vallarta, López Mateos, Circunvalación Agustín Yáñez and Hernán Cortés.

 

 

The fourth segment has been the most difficult to “find” during our walks on this route due to the high number of important avenues and streets that cross through it, and the consequent state of contamination it still has.

We have been following a preliminary route that goes alongside avenida Hernán Cortés taking us from Glorieta Minerva to one of the arbours of the old Monraz neighbourhood in which we normally have our first and brief stop to “rest” through the performing of certain yoga and relaxation exercises directed by Krista.

 

 

After the exercises, it was evident that New Way consolidated at that moment in some way, the incipient but definitive new state of consciousness that the walk was building in the entire group. After a brief rest, we continued the walk going up and down through the winding avenues of the Lomas Del Valle neighbourhood until we connected with Paseo de las Águilas, the wide avenue known recently as Pablo Neruda. In one of its lateral streets, we turned to the left and towards the Sacred Forest of the Spring Water, commonly known as “Los Colomos”. Due to our new state of consciousness, and with every step that approached us to its surroundings, we all clearly felt the presence and soothing vibration of the forest.

 

 

When we were just about to get to one of its lateral entrances, I couldn’t help remembering another ceremonial walk that on the same route, Félix and I, performed in the past:

 

 

In that occasion, we were walking exactly by the same dark street around five a.m. when all of a sudden we listened to some steps behind us. Some mysterious walkers that for the sound of their steps appeared to be at least two persons were approaching with some urgency to where we walked. This filled me with a sense of uncertainty and anxiousness; However, Felix who was walking ahead of me didn’t showed any anxiety and kept on walking at the same pace. Even though I always knew the type of walker that I was walking with in that journey, to see and perceive its portentous control of the fear to the uncertainty that the clearly audible steps that were following us represented, made perfectly clear the kind of warrior that guided my steps. Feeling very proud to walk at his side, I continued untroubled overcoming the anxiety and uncertainty that produced in me those unexpected nocturnal companions.

 

We kept advancing at a good pace towards the Forest of the Spring Water; however, our companions did not slow down their walking pace and were almost at an arm length of our backs. It was possible to listen to their conversations, which I sensed were trying to break our concentration because they were mocking our presence and silent walking. When they could almost touch us, we saw the first and unmistakable trees that delimited a lateral entrance of the “Los Colomos” forest. Immediately after, and in the same unexpected way in which they appeared in our route, our mysterious walkers disappeared as soon as we arrived to the entrance of the Sacred Forest of the Spring Water. Félix and I never commented this event.

 

 

The forest of “Los Colomos” has always played a very important part in the growing of the city of Guadalajara since its beginnings, and it is strongly rooted in the consciousness of its inhabitants. Its abundant and subterranean waters supplied the city’s needs during hundreds of years. I still have fresh the memories of my childhood picnics inside the beautiful forest that has lost a considerable length of its forested area and has reduced the flow of its underground source. This, mainly due to the voracity of the developers of “exclusive” developments that take advantage of the indifference and sometimes-open complicity of the municipal and federal “authorities” that are supposed to protect this natural resource. They have greatly reduced its original extension. Fortunately, the most sacred and special area of the forest is still preserved to this day.

 

 

Our group New Way was aware of the dangers of an even greater destruction that were constantly threatening this Sacred Forest. The moments of intimate communion with the forest that the ceremonial walks produced in all of us helped to establish some degree of communication with it, so it was really a pleasure to make our second and last brief rest in this sacred space.

 

 

The Forest of the Spring Water was the spiritual sponge, to say the least that purified and fully prepared us to deliver the best of ourselves to the Virgin of Zapopan when the walk finished at her shrine because it was the last stop in an arduous route that refreshed us considerably, physically, emotionally and spiritually.

 

In a spot of the forest previously chosen by New Way, we all made a stop to have with respect a personal communication with the trees, our green and standing brothers. Once this silent dialogue started, the whole forest wrapped us with love, and an impressive silence, sometimes interrupted by strong gusts of wind, here and there, in the top of the trees, or around us. The Forest of the Spring Water never allowed us to lose the rhythm we had established through our walking, and always after some ten minutes rushed us to continue and conclude our ceremonial walk through some signal that the whole group unmistakably perceived.

 

 

Refreshed and with optimism, we continued our way towards the last stage of our masculine route. When I said goodbye to the forest, I received from its spirit two unexpected and valuable gifts for our group: Its pure waters of underground source were always ready to cleanse the mind of the one who knows how to listen; and its gusts of wind will murmur inspiration to the one that knows how to contain itself.

 

 

After several walks through this route, we noticed the existence here and there of several and proud trees of the species “ahuehuete” on the trail that leads to the Avenida Patria entrance to the Forest of “Los Colomos”. Our group New Way never left the forest without acknowledging them with respect and joy. They remembered us of the numerous battles fought by an enormous “ahuehuete”, named “El Sargento” and its four hundred green soldiers in the Sacred Forest of Chapultepec in Mexico City. To walk through the last segment that separated us from the Zapopana was a true joy. Even though this last segment was considerably dirty, our cohesion as a group always prevented any unexpected problems due to lack of concentration. At some two hundred metres from our destiny and when the towers of the basilica could be seen for the first time rising proud on the horizon, it was already notorious the different vibration and clarity that could be perceived in the surroundings. We were entering the immediate area of influence of the Virgin of Zapopan.

 

 

Every time upon arriving, we were always practically “walked through” towards our destiny by the Zapopana, which gave our group with generosity unforgettable moments of inner silence. Once we crossed the last street that separated us from the basilica, Félix stopped outside the entrance to the atrium to ask mentally with respect, the clearance to go inside the church. Once received, we entered in absolute silence into the atrium and gathered around a statue of a Spanish Franciscan friar located near the entrance of the basilica.

 

After a silent and mental salutation with respect and gratefulness to the guardians of the place for their generous help and their protection, we entered the beautiful basilica to perform a final prayer at the feet of its beautiful Zapopana. It was in those special moments in which we used to receive individually all kinds of blessings and enlightening intuitions, placing as well, at the feet of the Zapopana the energy gathered during the ceremonial walk, individually and as a group along with our personal petitions.

 

 

Little by little, we started to leave the sacred precinct to reunite again in the atrium. Immediately after, with respect and gratefulness, we embraced Félix, our excellent guide in the memorable journey, to afterwards, seal our friendship and compromise as a group and as warriors of the light with affectionate hugs and open congratulations.

 

 

Once the last embrace concluded, and before we started with an informal chat, seven sonorous strokes of a bell calling to early morning mass, sealed our ceremonial walk. The beautiful Zapopana had received our offering of love and sacrifice and she was letting us know it in this way. The guardians of the ancient traditions of the place were acknowledging as well the efforts of this strange group of white cotton attires and red stripes in the heads whose traditions they could not distinguish yet.

 

 

Slowly, we made our way to the bus stop that would take us again to the Metropolitan Cathedral in order to board all squeezed the car we parked in its surroundings and in which we all arrived early morning. A hard journey for our daily survival in our different occupations was still waiting for us but there was happiness in our hearts because thanks to our efforts by walking in silence in the dark and cold dawn, we had grown spiritually, and our beloved Guadalajara was now, at least a little more awakened.

Chapter 2

Feminine Walk: Zapopan Basílica – Metropolitan Cathedral

(12^th^ Day of the month)

The most important aspect of this short ceremonial walk of an hour and a half long was probably the difficulties and the struggles that our entire group New Way experimented during this route to carry out this walk with effectiveness and with the minimum degree of concentration and inner silence. This was due to the existent contamination of the path and the noise that somehow existed on spite of the early hour in which we realized the walk.

 

 

The adequate cleansing of this route is fundamental. The enormous human concentration that forms the sacred Romería in honour of the Virgin of Zapopan every 12th of October follows this same route only going in the other direction, from the Metropolitan Cathedral to the Basilica of Zapopan.

 

This is why it is of fundamental importance to work in this route several times and with the best of preparations to cleanse it gradually, helping in this way to produce an even more important energetic emanation during the Romería for the benefit of all the inhabitants of the city of Guadalajara.

 

 

Another and very important benefit that can come from the cleansing of this feminine route will be an easier mixture and stabilization of two spiritual energies, one masculine, and the other feminine that emanate from both sacred precincts, the Metropolitan Cathedral and the Basilica of Zapopan.

 

 

This is precisely what takes place each year, and every 12th of October during the sacred Romería, and, this energy can flow on a permanent basis as long as this feminine route remains clean.

Chapter 3

 

 

 

 

Feminine Walk: Metropolitan Cathedral – Virgin of the Eagle’s

(September 12, 3:30 a.m.)

Trembling with cold, and more asleep than awaken, the members of New Way gathered in the imposing and silent Metropolitan Cathedral of Guadalajara. We were preparing to start with enthusiasm our first feminine walk on a new route that “it was given to us” during our group meditation as a new route that we should try to find and cleanse as part of our work of spiritual ecology in the city of Guadalajara. In this occasion, Alicia completed a formal dedication of our work to the Virgin of Guadalupe asking on our behalf for her protection and support on the uncertain route that we were about to start.

 

 

Rosana was the chosen one to guide our group and Krista would be the one closing the formation in the back of the column. With us were Tomás, the untiring Félix, Brenda, Natalia, and Agustín.

 

The first great segment of this route was known to us, and started from the intersection of the avenidas 16 de Septiembre and Juárez until the intersection of the avenidas Vallarta and Chapultepec. This was certainly a night particularly cold but comfortably silent at the same time.

 

 

After almost a half an hour walking, an extraordinary and peculiar event made its presence felt in our group New Way as soon as we crossed the transitional space represented by the “Parque de la Revolución”. The chilling cold we all felt in our very bones while walking disappeared completely a few minutes later, a situation that we all interpreted as a good omen for our new enterprise.

 

 

When we arrived to the second segment, our group was already a sole and silent entity, and in the intersection of avenida Vallarta with avenida Chapultepec, Rosana turned to the left, advancing by the central side of the wide pedestrian ridge. This second and short segment was going alongside Chapultepec Avenue from the spot where Rosana turned left in the intersection of avenue Vallarta until the arbour that received the intersection of the avenidas Niños Héroes and Mariano Otero. To be encountering in our way every two or three blocks, the different statues dedicated to the Niños Héroes, the teenage warriors that in 1847 restored with their sacrifice the dignity of our country with their heroic opposition against the North American invasion of our country, was certainly moving.

 

 

When we arrived to the enormous monument dedicated to honour the memory of the Niños Heroes, Rosana made a ritual reconnaissance on its surroundings proceeding to lead the group around the monument in a full circle from left to right with great and emotive respect. Several symbols that exist in the monument preserve the powerful sacredness of the place. Once transcended the monument, our group of aspirants to sacred warriors took a path along the avenida Mariano Otero that has lots of contamination due to its being in a wide transitional area with a mix of industrial, commercial and family housing uses. In the intersection of Mariano Otero with an avenue of the neighbourhood “Jardines Del Bosque”, New Way turned to the left, crossing the big avenue through forested pedestrian paths and public parks until we found an access to the wide and industrious avenida “Cruz Del Sur”.

 

The avenida Cruz del Sur, on spite of being full of diverse types of businesses mainly related to the automotive industry, and of having diverse family housing neighbourhoods, didn’t appeared to be as contaminated, and I could even perceive briefly a quality of honesty and honourableness emanating from its core during my journey. However, not everything was sweet in our walking along this avenue because our group had to endure at least two sudden encounters with jealous unleashed dogs, guardians of the houses we were passing on the side in our vigorous walk. It is not pleasant to have a brave animal running at your side barking and growling in the darkness. With incredible stoicism, not one of the members of New Way broke the walking formation neither the column nor the brave and secure pace on the walk. My respects and admiration go to my brave companions, and especially to our female warriors that guided the column and closed the formation on its rear guard.

 

 

Our group reached the end of the large avenida “Cruz del Sur” with the first brightness of the dawn. Just at the end of the wide avenue, Rosana rushing the pace, turned to the left going deeply into the winding and sinuous streets of the beautiful neighbourhood Colonia de las Águilas that goes up to the very skirts of the rustic Gachupín mount in the west of the City of Guadalajara.

 

 

After the long walk that was completing already two and a half hours of uninterrupted effort, the group started panting heavily going up and down the streets of the hilly neighbourhood, only comforted by a soft and fresh breeze that was blowing in the dawn. After some twenty more minutes and entering now into the Pinar de la Calma neighbourhood, we traveled the last segment that separated us from the beautiful little statue of the Virgin Mary located in the outskirts of the rocky Cerro Del Gachupín passing the last houses stubbornly built there.

 

 

Once we left behind the last construction that appeared to be an elementary school, we negotiated a dusty plain and initiated a short ascent on the hill until we found the Virgin Mary site some thirty meters above.

 

 

The Virgin of the Eagles was a little statue of one metre and thirty centimetres tall, beautifully dressed with flowers, stripes of coloured paper, and votive candles that made very clear the profound affection of the locals for their Virgin.

Once we surrounded the statue with all respect, New Way kneeled down to pray spontaneously thanking her for the protection and inspiration received during the journey.

 

 

In a beautiful gesture that we all imitated joyfully, Natalia approached the statue of the Virgin Mary and kissing its feet took both hands to her heart and deposited into the hands of the Virgin Mary her offering of Love. One by one, we were depositing our love offerings in the beautiful hands of our heavenly Mother.

 

 

Immediately after, Krista guided us through a beautiful and spontaneous ritual in which we all joined hands forming a circle around the beautiful Marian figure. Then, Krista standing in front of Mother Mary, pronounced some short and emotive words of thankfulness to the Guadalupana for her labour in pro of our México and for her decisive participation and responsibility on the fact that our noble nation still preserves a great deal of its spiritual richness. Afterwards, the circle slowly rotated to allow every member of New Way to do the same in front of the Marian figure, sending our Mother the messages of love that our heart dictated spontaneously.

 

 

Once the ritual concluded, a fresh breeze made its presence felt in the place. One by one, with respect and fraternal love, we effusively embraced each other, in the knowledge that we opened a new ritual route that day in the west of the city, joining the energy of the Metropolitan Cathedral with the energy of the beautiful Virgin of las Águilas.

 

 

Another ceremonial work was finished, and while we returned slowly going down the hill towards the place were Félix had conveniently left the day before his Volkswagen some three or four blocks away, everybody laughed and joked remembering the anecdotes of this memorable journey.

 

 

One more day will soon start in the always vibrant and beautiful city of Guadalajara in which one could say that thanks to our effort, the spiritual contamination that affects all urban conglomerates had dissipated in some measure. Squeezed in the small car, the group of spiritual ecologists would start soon tired but happy, their daily work activities.

Chapter 4

Masculine Walk: Virgin of the Eagle’s – The Eye of the Eagle

(November 21^st^, 4 a.m.)

With great devotion and trembling due to the intense cold, our group of early risers surrounded with affection the beautiful little statue of the Virgin Mary that stands in a hill of the Gachupín Mount just above Pinar de la Calma neighbourhood in the city of Guadalajara.

 

 

After dedicating our work and the customary petition of help and protection to the Guadalupana, we walked silently down the hill until we found the rustic stone street that goes down and parallel through the outer western skirts of the neighbourhood whose settlers were placidly sleeping.

 

 

In that occasion, and by unanimous decision, New Way delegated the guidance and total direction of this new route we were attempting for the first time to Tomás, our sceptic and dear companion. Tomás, in our last group reunion, and as soon as he found out he was chosen to be our guide of the new route, rapidly protested saying:

 

And, how am I supposed to guide you if I am always asking all kinds of questions about everything?

 

 

- Well, ask your heart this time – Natalia answered spontaneously, and this provoked an avalanche of laughter and expressions of happiness from the group.

 

 

In this thoughts I was entertaining my mind, walking with an open smile when I surprised myself engaged into this inner dialogue that even though pleasant, it wasn’t certainly helping to the introspection and the silence we needed as a group in our journey. To counteract this situation, I started immediately my silent prayers that have proven many times in the past to be the balsam I needed to quiet down my noisy mind.

 

 

After half an hour and almost one kilometre of walking in a straight line, we arrived at the intersection with avenida Presidente Lopez Mateos. Immediately afterwards, Tomás in a quick decision, crossed once and for all to the north side of the wide avenue considering I think, that this manoeuvre will protect us a little more from the cold wind that was blowing at that hour of the night.

 

 

Our guide’s intuition was correct because almost immediately, and with the cover of the tall and leafy trees of Las Fuentes neighbourhood, our group felt the benefits of this change. I am certain that in those moments we all smiled internally due to our good selection of the guide for this walk, whose designation “came to us” surely as a spiritual command during our last group meditation.

 

 

With a transformed face, and an assertiveness that emanated naturally from him, Tomás was already the image of a spiritual warrior that guided our group with a good pace on the side of the road in total darkness and sorting holes and pools of water from the recent rains. Afterwards, we reached the big access of the Bugambilias residential neighbourhood, where the Eye of the Eagle was located and hidden amongst its forested hills.

 

Trying to pass unnoticed as much as we could, we rushed our walking through the green gardens that run alongside the main Bugambilias Avenue, with the company of an intense wind that was blowing very hard and getting to our very bones.

 

 

After walking another forty minutes, we arrived at the northern end of the avenue and immediately entered into the forested hills. Our walking had been silent and precise, and leaving behind the inhabited zone of the development, we approached a small ravine just before dawn. After a short stop behind a rustic trail that descended into the junction of two forested hills and due to the general confusion on the prevailing darkness of a night with no moon, Alicia turned to Krista and asked:

 

 

And what do we do now? – It is too dark to go down this hill; we cannot see anything at all –

 

 

Krista, showing the wisdom and humility that always characterized her actions, just turned her head to where Tomás was standing. Our guide, without saying a word, and as if asking for Divine inspiration from the distant shining stars, turned his head to the sky for some instants, and with great resolve walked into the obscure trail that descended into the ravine. With great speed, and trying not to lose trace of his steps, we all followed him.

 

 

Little by little, and in spite of walking stumblingly in the darkness, our group New Way recovered its self-domain and integrity as a group, walking through small trees and thick bushes that were taking its toll of abrasions and scrapings in our bodies. After struggling some fifteen minutes, everything appeared to indicate we were finally in a more or less clear path that was beginning to ascend on the right hand side of one of the two hills that formed the narrow ravine.

 

 

The silence was imposing, and the cold that is always the prelude of the dawn was at its very height; little by little, we began to distinguish our surroundings with more clarity.

Even though we continued our ascent, it seemed to me that we were going up through some stairs of stone spaced out at every meter or meter and a half rather than on a natural trail. When leaving behind trees and bushes we arrived to a very rocky area, we heard a soft but at the same time respectful voice of command:

 

 

- Tomás –

 

 

Tomás, who definitely was in a very special level of consciousness, immediately sensed the urgency but at the same time considerate petition of Krista to make a stop in that precise spot, and stopped remaining immobile. What we witnessed immediately after moved me a great deal. Krista, once the group had stopped, left her place in the column, and with a spotless solemnity advanced to where Tomás was standing, and stopping at his right hand side respectfully asked to receive temporarily from him the command of his impeccable guidance. Her intention was to perform in that place a ceremony of petition of clearance to enter the special stony altar that was built in the distant past just at the side of the bottomless well of spring water that was located several metres above to where we were, and that was the abode of the spirit of the dry well.

 

 

Once the change of command took place, Krista formed with all of us two ceremonial circles. One, in which the men were placed in an exterior circle and the women in an interior circle, with the exterior circling to the right and the interior to the left of their own circumference to symbolically represent with this the constant motion of the two opposed but complementary energies of the universe.

 

 

She explained also that completing seven full rotations of each circumference will allow us to stabilize the masculine and feminine energies we had been “carrying” with us from spot to spot since the beginning of this new energetic circle on the northwest of the city and that started in the Metropolitan Cathedral. She said it was imperative to take all the necessary precautions to prevent the destabilization of the powerful energies preserved since ancient times in the apparently dry well of spring water that will be our destiny in a few more minutes.

 

Krista added that she didn’t have any knowledge that the energy seated in the Metropolitan Cathedral under which an underground river passed through, had been “transported” in recent times to the Eye of the Eagle by any group. When she noted our faces of fear and confusion, she laughed openly and said that there was nothing to worry about because anyhow a group like ours didn’t have the necessary energetic quality to cause any damage to the hidden receptacle of the stony altar. Nevertheless, she pointed out that we could certainly affect its sacredness if we acted in a disrespectful and irresponsible manner, and in that case, severe consequences would be imposed upon us. Just as she finished talking, the mesmerizing howling of an owl was heard above us. Several of us noisily passed saliva through our throats.

 

 

Once the ritual was finished, Krista asked us to rest a while in any spot of our own choosing. It was now possible to see more clearly even when the sun had not appeared yet behind the mountains of the east. Distracted, and very tired, I sat between two stones of some forty centimetres long barely separated from each other. The exhausting journey kept us silent.

 

 

In a spontaneous way, I reclined myself completely among the stones, and felt immediately an indescribable fullness. In that precise moment, in that precise spot, there was peace and nothing was necessary in my world. On spite of the cold morning, I felt comforted and warm. I remember thinking we were in a very special place, and I was right because by what I could distinguish of our immediate surroundings, I concluded we probably were in some kind of amphitheatre of human creation, surely from Pre-Columbian times, even though very faded due to the ill treatment, the pass of time and the thriving vegetation.

 

 

I decided to stop any mental reasoning, which was easy in that particular spot, and let myself be healed as much as I could from this special place. The silence that all New Way was breathing and enjoying was impressive, and Krista appeared to be aware of our situation because we all “found” special spots were to rest for a while. Some few minutes later, Krista repeated the same voice of command but at the same time of respect that we have heard before:

 

 

- Tomás -

 

As a disciplined group of warriors, we all understood Krista’s calling, and rising up we quickly integrated the column to fill the same positions we had before during the walk. Krista, thanking Tomás for his consideration to her petition asked him humbly to continue with the exemplary task of guidance he had realized, and to lead us now to our final destination. Tomás, with satisfaction reflected in his face, looked above his head for some instants, and continued the ascent.

 

 

We continued our ascent at a good pace walking now on faded stairs of stone separated at the beginning at every two meters and a little after at every forty or fifty centimetres. After fifteen minutes of a very steep ascension, we arrived at our destiny: A kind of semi-circular stony altar surrounded and protected from the exterior sight by tall ridges and an impressive hollow cave semi-covered by vegetation in the backside of the altar.

 

 

As soon as he arrived, Tomás with good instinct walked around the circular platform stopping in front of the enormous cavity where a very old spring of water existed, and giving his back to the direction from where we all arrived, he faced the big cave frontally. With a well-calculated pause, Tomás waited until the whole group formed a perfect circle in the stony platform, and keeping a total and absolute silence, immobilized his whole anatomy in such a way that in the semi-darkness of the imminent dawn he resembled an imposing granite statue

 

 

I just had enough time to note my own position inside the circle, which was with my back to the dark concavity known as the “Eye of the Eagle”. Then, Tomás raising his hands to the sky and lowering them down slowly as if to focus our attention in a complete way, proceeded to join his hands with the companions he had at every side. Following his silent instruction, we soon joined by the hands, and energetically interlaced, according to our particular characteristics. Tomás, Natalia, Félix, Alicia, Rosana, Agustín, and Krista formed the septenary circle in the chilly dawn. With a strong voice that appeared to be resounding maybe due to the characteristics of the place, or maybe because through Tomás was speaking through the ancestral heart of our nation, we heard:

 

– Heart of the heavens, and heart of the earth, we are gathered here representing our new mestizo race, the product of a powerful fusion of two warrior cultures, to give testimony of our respect to this sacred receptacle, its guardians and its traditions. We want to deliver from the very bottom of our hearts this powerful and ancestral energy, full of love and faith that we have brought from the very heart of our beautiful city of Guadalajara. This energy is not ours, it belongs now to the traditions of the two cultures that have given us life and nurturing, energy and inspiration, making of our beloved México the vibrant and beautiful nation that is today, and that struggles to continue to be.

 

 

Let all Mexicans awaken; let us all awaken for the good of humanity. A new nation has been born and our noble race is being nurtured through the positive aspects of the two cultures that engendered it; Love, braveness, nobility, sacrifice, abnegation, honour, patriotism, wisdom, loyalty, and an unbreakable faith, and creativity. Honour is given to our Good Father, our Great Spirit, Ometéotl, Hunab Ku, the Supreme Giver of Time and Measurement; Honour be given to our Mother Mary of Guadalupe, and to Jesus the Christ, honour be given to the Four Ancient Traditions that have given us sustenance and still beat vigorous in the hearts of all Mexicans.

 

 

A new nation awakens and a New Way is at sight. Let the unbreakable faith and the love of our poor ones, of our saint and noble ‘pobrecitos’, of our impoverished minorities of the north, the center and the south, nurture with the richness of their spirit our noble souls so we can be capable to restore to them and to share with them everything that has belonged to them forever. Let the guardians of both cultures listen to this loving and ingenuous call of our group.

 

 

Let a New Way be built from the best and most sacred of the two mother cultures that sustain us, nurturing our minds and our hearts, and that as Olmec, Maya, Zapotec, Náhuatl and Mestizo, we will build our new, millenary, noble and loyal nation. Long live the heroes that gave us our nation! Long live the beautiful traditions of our two mother cultures! Long live the Twelve Torches, the Seven Rays, and Regina, the Queen of Eagle’s country! Long live Mexico, Long live Mexico, and Long Live México! –

 

Immediately afterwards, we all raised our hands in synchrony and in a slow motion towards the sky. A strong wind came to us unexpectedly while at the same time, an enormous falcon flew in the horizon in wider and wider concentric circles until it passed with great speed above our heads. Even when not a single drop of water had appeared falling from the clouds, the humidity in the environment was quite impressive because we could actually smell the presence of water, on spite of the fact that the Eye of the Eagle spring water had been a dry well for several years already.

 

 

Everything had concluded. Tomás our sceptic and rational friend had given us a lesson of intuition, discipline and sobriety. With tears in our eyes after listening to his moving petition, we were embracing him one by one thanking with admiration his great mastery in the guidance of our group in that unforgettable ceremonial walk. The sun has just risen up over our beautiful pearl of the West.

Chapter 5

 

 

 

 

Masculine Walk: The Eye of the Eagle – The Ixtépete

(Day 21^st^, 8.a.m.)

 

 

The morning was chilly but sunny when we performed a group prayer to ask for help and protection in the beautiful platform that crowns the Eye of the Eagle just outside the city of Guadalajara. We have decided to walk during the morning because this new route would pass through populated areas and amongst several low-income neighbourhoods built by the ever-increasing number of nllers that are constantly settling in the outskirts of the city. I had the task to guide the group this time in which the little members of our group New Way, Vicente, Juanito and Ignacio were walking with us. Once Alicia finished our group prayer, we initiated our descent through the stony stairs that lead to the lower part of the hills where the Eye of the Eagle was hiding. Half way down the hill, and in one of their excursions, the little members of our group ventured into the ravine that separated two mountainous hills, requiring a little after, the usual rescue because they were lost.

 

 

After we made a group stop along the trail, Alicia and Félix went down the hill in a straight line into the ravine towards the place where our little warriors were stuck, and immediately asked with big voices for us to join them.

Not without some concern, we all rushed our descent through the deep ravine only to find the happy news that the little ones were perfectly fine and had made an interesting discovery instead. In the very bottom of the ravine, there was what appeared to be a very well preserved promontory in the form of a rectangular construction of pre-Columbian origin and probably belonging to the late-classic period, semi-covered by vegetation.

 

 

From where we were standing, and directly over our heads, we could see just above the same hill through which we ascended to the Eye of the Eagle, a spillway of stones and sand as by-products of the access road built for the Bugambilias high class residential development that is seated over the mountain. It was evident the destruction and disdain showed by the developers of the residential neighbourhood and the looters of archaeological sites towards this site, as well as by the callous indifference of the governmental “authorities” that are supposedly in charge to protect our cultural and archaeological treasures. One more time, our little warriors showed us the next step to be taken in this unexpected encounter; they kneeled down and ask “our dearest God and Father” to take care of our “old brothers” because nobody appeared to watch for them, to which we all added similar petitions.

 

 

Afterwards, we restarted our ceremonial walk, and now with the little warriors conveniently integrated into our column, we walked through the very center of the fresh ravine until we found a flat surface. Trying to pass as unnoticed as possible, we turned to the left in a little lateral street of the Bugambilias neighbourhood and towards the northeast. After some thirty minutes of walk, we left behind the last houses of the neighbourhood and accessed a very rough zone of bushes and natural vegetation that went up and down constantly with a cloddy and very dry consistence in some segments.

 

 

After walking almost forty-five more minutes and climbing up a steep hill, we were surprised by the spectacle that presented to our eyes. Everywhere we looked in the horizon, we could see an enormous city of cardboard and perishable materials formed by several and populated low-income neighbourhoods just below the sumptuous and luxurious residential constructions that crowned the mountainous hills of Bugambilias.

It appeared to be a city within our city, and it was the answer of the less favoured of our society to the deaf ears of the “authorities” and big corporations of our country to generate more just conditions and employment for all its citizens. The houses were constructed with all the imaginable materials, most of them leftovers and waste materials surely recovered from big public garbage dumps: Cardboard, wood, paper, brick, concrete block, rubber, and blankets. Through their streets traced by the rainstorms flowed here and there in some occasion’s sewage waters.

 

 

Too many of those neighbourhoods were lacking water, sewage and electricity. However, amongst that apparent disorder, there was thriving a vibrant and industrious activity, product of the inventiveness and creativity for daily survival of their inhabitants. There were auto-mechanic’s workshops, block and brick factories, blacksmith shops, convenience stores, carpenter workshops, tortilla factories, improvised religious constructions, sports fields, and many little schools could be seen everywhere.

 

 

Once we arrived to the outskirts of the first low-income neighbourhood, I immediately looked for a route that could offer us some kind of anonymity because being a Sunday, the majority of its inhabitants will surely be in their streets. It worried me a little the fact that our white attires with red stripes on the heads and column-like formation will surely attract the curiosity of everyone that could see the disciplined and silent walking of our group. This route was nowhere at sight, and without any other alternative at hand, I guided our group through one of the secondary streets. I tried to reach as soon as possible the open field that I knew would be at the end of the cluster of low-income neighbourhoods we had to cross in a straight line towards our destiny: the pre-Colombian archeological site known as the Ixtepete.

 

 

In my own selfishness, I thought that my inability to find an inhabited route towards our destiny would bring consequences for our ceremonial work, such as lack of concentration or the loss of group energy, and of course, I was wrong. As we got deeper into the populated low-income neighbourhoods, we were encountering curious stares but also most of them friendly ones, and we even got the case of two old neighbours that applauded with joy at our passing, as well as the fact that many other residents said hello almost with some type of reverent gestures to our absolute surprise.

 

The most friendly and enthusiastic were the children of the neighbourhoods which quickly invited to play our little warriors that briefly broke their formation before our vigilant and astonished looks, to punt with joy in different occasions little soccer balls which whom their new neighbour friends invited them constantly to play. In a brief stop due to car traffic, Juanito had the fortune of receive a small “balero” toy as a present, and all the little warriors received ice popsicles from some friendly women that joined our group by almost running to deliver their icy goodies.

 

 

We never had in our ceremonial walks such a warm reception to our certainly strange silent and martial walking activities and even more strange attires.

 

 

The lack of material resources of all the persons we found in our passing was more than compensated by the generosity and beauty of their hearts. This, I was sure, had filled to the top our hearts with energy and optimism, and if through our passing, we were capable – as I am convinced, it occurred – to spontaneously distribute part of the energy we have been carrying in our walks in these neighbourhoods, a very important objective was accomplished in our collective awakening.

 

 

When we left behind the last neighbourhood, and crossed an improvised soccer field towards the open countryside, we had already received a lesson of love and humility. We didn’t hear any mocking or insults from the people we encountered during our walk, only silent acceptance and generosity. While going away, we were all struggling to contain our laughs while listening to the repetitive farewells that Vicente, Ignacio and Juanito were giving without any restraints to their new friends that have been with us, walking in our column.

 

 

The new little members of our column had to go back in a rush, attending not without hesitation to the hurried screams of their parents. As we walked some distance away from the populated area, the wind started blowing with great strength, softly pushing our group from behind and in the direction of our destiny in the archaeological site of the Ixtepete.

 

Sensing this would be some kind of a sign, I looked at my watch; it was 11:30 in the morning and our ceremonial walk had already taken more than three hours. Without thinking too much I rushed the pace of our walking and after more than a half an hour of walk in the open field we finally crossed a dusty secondary road that separated us from the unmistakable archaeological site of pre-Columbian origin known as the Ixtepete.

 

 

Just before entering the site, I made a stop, and going to the place in the column were Krista was standing, I asked her respectfully to do the honours, taking the group inside the archaeological site. With a wide smile of pride first, and thankfulness after, she declined arguing this was a ceremonial walk of masculine characteristics and after giving me an unexpected and effusive hug, she returned to her place in the column of walkers. After some brief instants of confusion, the six members of the column repeated softly and one by one my name as if giving testimony of their absolute adhesion and trust in my guidance.

 

 

Deeply moved and containing the emotion that overwhelmed me, I returned to the front of the column and with a strong and martial walking pace, I entered the site going directly towards the guardian of the place. One by one, we were gathering around our arboreal friend, and voicing the testimony of our love, we asked for its permission to enter the ancient and sacred construction of pre-Columbian origin, with massive architectural features that have the unmistakable characteristics of the buildings erected by the Aztec groups that emigrated from the Aztlan.

 

 

Once the approval was received, our group New Way deposited with discipline, and respect the ancestral and sacred energies it had the fortune to transport into the millenary construction whose main basement has similitudes with the pyramid of the Sun of the sacred city of Teotihuacán. Immediately after, once more our little warriors showed us the way to conclude the ritual by giving us strong and loving hugs, which initiated a series of congratulations amongst the whole group due to a very well done work of spiritual ecology.

 

 

I was positive we were simply reproducing again a ritual representation that had been surely done in innumerable occasions in our indigenous history. Quick and fleeting passed through my mind the image of our beautiful Virgin of Zapopan when we were leaving the sacred site.

Chapter 6

Feminine Walk: The Ixtépete – Zapopan Basilica

(Day 12^th,^ 6 a.m.)

The great day had arrived. With God’s permission, we would close that morning the enormous energetic circle that took us walking several months through a wide area in the northwest of the city of Guadalajara in an authentic spiritual pilgrimage. Our column was that day specially numerous because in addition to the untiring Félix, Alicia, Krista, Rosana, Tomas and Agustín, we also had, Brenda, Natalia and Paloma walking with us, and giving our group New Way of ceremonial walkers a beautiful and invaluable feminine energy to the work we were about to start. We all sensed also a feeling of joy and joviality.

 

 

Once we surrounded with affection the arboreal guardian of the site and with our hands interweaved, our group commanded in this occasion by Natalia started an emotional petition for protection, help and a dedication to Our Lady of Zapopan of the work we will conclude at her feet. A large and tiring walk of probably 15 kilometres and more than five hours long was waiting for us along a road with a high level of contamination. At exactly six in the morning, we left behind the archaeological site of the Ixtépete.

 

 

With emotion, and fighting to achieve the needed inner silence, I sent a mental message to our spiritual guide Don Antonio Velasco Piña informing him of the start of our last ceremonial walk through that area of the city.

 

In the first morning hours, our journey was easy but as the day progressed, to walk in a ceremonial manner was for New Way an authentic feat. The noise and contamination of the area caused constant distractions on our group due to the high level of traffic of all types of vehicles that prevailed over the ring road that surrounded the city on its west end. Besides, as the sun climbed high in the horizon, the heat intensified.

Intuiting what was to come later, Natalia with very good criteria conducted our column from the very start over the forested area that surrounds the peripheral ring road in that part of the city which was to our fortune at least two meters below the level of asphalted carpet. This maneuver muffled a little the noise and contamination; however, after an hour and a half of walking without interruption, New Way on spite of being conformed by an experimented and vigorous group of disciplined walkers, started to show signs of lack of concentration that were traduced into the spreading of its column and some stumbling. The inhospitable route where we were walking was starting to win us some battles. Nevertheless, we have managed to cross the first great barrier of the route with no incidents, the busy and well-known highway to the town of Tequila.

Knowing perfectly that in a ceremonial walk, the lack of cohesion and concentration could turn against her column, after two more kilometres Natalia made the first stop of the walk just under some enormous eucalyptus. This spot was nearby an area where some developers were frantically building “exclusive developments” that had taken over completely what was once known as the north frontier of the sacred forest of the Spring Water, or “Los Colomos” forest.

The whole group showed an enormous relief when we stopped because we were at the very limits of our endurance, if not physical, certainly mental, having all struggled greatly to maintain the group cohesion and our inner silence. Krista, showing again her enormous quality as a human being and her spotless humility, asked respectfully permission to Natalia to perform a group meditation to help us relax a little, and to ask our beautiful Zapopana for her energy and protection in this journey that was barely closing the first half of the route. It was clear by our silent consensus that we were facing the most difficult walk of them all, and in her wisdom, our beloved Zapopana had foreseen that this should be the last one of them all to be attempted, in order to be adequately prepared.

Natalia greatly moved conceded permission, asking on her turn authorization from the group that once the meditation was finished, she could seat for some instants in the grass where we stopped. Sensing the enormous physical and mental effort made by Natalia to bring us safe and sound to where we were after two and a half hours of an extenuating and dangerous walk and with the affirmative silence of Krista, almost without any volition of my part I heard myself pronouncing the following words:

-I, Agustín, the smallest of the warriors present here, feel honoured to walk this day with our warrior and guide Natalia –

-Immediately after, we were listening to diverse voices that with emotion joined in a spontaneous way:

-I, Paloma, am honoured… – I, Alicia, am honoured… – I, Félix am honoured… – I, Tomás, am honoured… – I, Brenda, am honoured… I, Krista, am honoured… – I, Rosana, am honoured.

Natalia listened with her face illuminated with pride, and tears on her cheeks. Without uttering a word, and taking advantage of the evident flow of positive energy, Krista took us by the hands forming a meditation circle and asked us to close our eyes during the meditation.

I cherish this meditation because it is amongst the best I have experienced. This, even on spite of the noise and the smoke constantly produced by buses, cars and heavy vehicles that were passing through nearby. I also remember and have not been able to explain how while having the sun at my back, I clearly experienced a ray of sun passing through my forehead, going from one side to the other of my eyes and stopping as a refreshing balsam in the spot between my eyebrows.

When the meditation ended, New Way was a totally renovated group. Immediately afterwards, Natalia sat slowly in the grass and closed her eyes. Her expression was different; there was peace on her face.

Alicia approached her and placed her right hand about five centimetres above Natalia’s head whilst at the same time placing her left hand on her own heart. One by one, we were imitating Alicia’s gesture until we formed an energetic circle around Natalia. Then, a fresh breeze passed through the place. The signal to continue our journey had come, and this was the reading of Natalia also because she stood up immediately.

Her burning stare indicated us that the Zapopana had touched her. Krista, with a brief movement of her head gave her back the command of the group. Once she verified our column was already in a disciplined formation, Natalia retook the route with a firm pace. Nothing could stop us now.

We continued totally renovated emotionally and physically through the prolongation of the peripheral highway known as ‘periferico’. This was a sunny day, hot, and with lots of contamination and noise. I started to pray asking for the Zapopana’s favour on sending us her energy from the flowing source that her altar on the Basilica already is. Little by little, the noises of trucks and buses faded sensibly on spite of the intense traffic. It was already 9 am.

I don’t know if I thought of it or simply daydreamed about it but fleeting though my mind appeared the vision of an uninterrupted line of energy that left from the Basilica of Zapopan towards the exact location of our column that was walking heavily amongst the dust and the asphalt, dangerously passing through some streets, and secondary roads. Immediately, I noted a more erect posture in my companions while they were walking, and a sensible increase in the pace that Natalia was imprinting to our column. It was as if an invisible barrier that was obstructing our advance were now slowly fading away.

The Oasis

We were already entering the outskirts of the town of Zapopan on its northwest end, and without any warning, after five or six blocks walking on the outskirts of the town, Natalia turned to her right leaving behind the peripheral road and entering into an old neighbourhood.

This change of direction acted as a fresh balsam in New Way because it took us away from the noise and contamination produced by the traffic of vehicles, trucks and buses that had accompanied us for more than three tortuous hours. The streets were now all made of small stones and the neighbourhood had a good number of trees. The average temperature was fresh and the path deliciously shadowed. Natalia appeared to be looking for a spot to stop our column, and after hesitating in two or three occasions, she stopped just in front of a small convenience store. The owner of the store, a middle-aged woman, noticing that we were not attempting to go inside, came out a little confused to see what we were looking for. Our column had stopped in a disciplined formation and in an absolute silence. This situation and our white attires with red stripes on our heads attracted powerfully the attention of the owner of the store who in a spontaneous way and addressing Natalia directly asked:

- Good morning niña, are you looking for the church? –

- Yes, señora – answered Natalia – thank you – she added

- Well, you are almost there, it is three more blocks straight ahead on this same sidewalk – was her answer.

- Thank you señora, May God bless you – Natalia answered, and without any other word, she restarted the walk.

When we were leaving, I noticed while passing on the side of la señora, that she made the sign of the cross on herself as a sign of respect at seeing us walk, and that next to her where several people that came outside the convenience store to satisfy their own curiosity. Something was not making any sense in my own perception because the old Basilica should be still at a respectable distance to where we were. Then, to what church was the señora guiding us?

After three more blocks, Natalia found a little but beautiful stone and brick church, which we immediately entered.

There was a fresh temperature and a comforting peace on the inside but there was also something more, something indescribable, a strange magnetism and the presence and unmistakable vibration of the Virgin Mary, our loving Mother and dearest divine intermediary.

I understood then that this religious precinct was an obligated stop along our way because we also needed to deposit there, and for the benefit of the inhabitants of the neighbouring vicinities, a part of the energy we have been carrying.

In a spontaneous way, we spread in the empty precinct. I sat nearby Felix who was looking attentively and with great interest in all directions as if wanting to apprehend all its surroundings, which were simple and enigmatic at the same time. I continued trying to describe to myself the mysterious but comforting energy of the place. Finally, I understood it: It was the unmistakable presence of the sacred feminine!

I kneeled down in the reclining space of a wooden bench covering my eyes with my hands to pray a little, and I remember no more. Afterwards, I was practically awaken abruptly by a soft push of Felix who told me it was time already to restart the walk, and that the whole column was waiting for us outside. While going out in a rush, I noticed the whole church was now full of people waiting for the start of the 11 a.m. mass. As Felix explained to me later, what I considered only two or three minutes of prayer and introspection were in reality fifteen.

I decided not to look for more explanations to my involuntary nap, which I attributed to the exhausting journey and rapidly took my place in the column while being followed by the smiling faces of my companions already waiting outside in a disciplined formation. My conscience was in a strange but clear state and I felt full of strength and a vigorous energy; there wasn’t any noise inside my normally restless mind, only peace and an intense concentration. Strangely, and in spite of the uneven stone street in which we were all walking, I did not feel my steps at all and appeared to be floating instead of walking.

Natalia guided our column with an impeccable intuition because in spite of not knowing the area or the route towards the Basílica of Zapopan, she always appeared to have a clear idea on what streets to follow and what turns to take, either to the right or to the left towards our destiny. The settlers of the neighbourhoods we were crossing through, mostly mothers with their little children and some workers of the local businesses were looking estranged and curious the passing through of New Way. Our group cohesion and inner silence was now evident due to the gentler characteristics of the new route and the oasis we found in the small church we just visited. This, I was certain, acted as a shield and protection to our group from some curious inhabitants that weren’t sure how to react to the passing through of a disciplined column of nine walkers dressed with white pants and shirts or dresses, and red stripes in their heads.

After some thirty minutes of walking, the forested and stony neighbourhoods of the periphery of the town of Zapopan gave way to the old core of the town. We could not be that far now of the big avenue Hidalgo that runs parallel to the Basilica and the Zapopan City Hall. A confused mixture of feelings of happiness for the imminent arrival to our destiny and expectation before the unexpected that may be waiting for us was gradually taking over my spirit. Immediately, I started to pray to the Virgin of Zapopan that I knew was waiting for us, asking for her protection.

Twenty minutes later, my heart jumped out of joy when our column commanded by its impeccable warrior Natalia turned to the left and entered unimpeded in the road extension that conduces to the great avenue Hidalgo that runs alongside the Basilica. Even though I fleetingly saw at the distance their proud and beautiful towers, I was feeling an odd apprehension in my stomach. I increased my prayers reciting a short phrase that asked the Zapopana for her protection.

Throughout my past youth adventures as a mountain climber, I learned through experience that when we return from the top to the base camp or even when we are just about to reach the top, the climber must double its efforts to keep aware and concentrated on its task. This must be done to avoid “the body to turn loose”, physically, or to be frail emotionally or mentally when the final objective is at hand. Otherwise, unexpected accidents happen due to the lack of the necessary focus.

Something similar must have happened to us because when we walked through the sidewalk of the left back side of the Basilica, and just about to enter the atrium by its lateral entrance, in a totally unexpected way a woman of sixty or more years of age, untidy hair and distorted facial expression rushed against our column. She came from the great avenue Hidalgo, first shouting, and soon after, throwing blows at us.

I cannot recall precisely or fully explain myself what exactly took place but I somehow perceived that this unbalanced being managed to approach our column just to give Paloma a strong push which made her stumble for some instants. However, she immediately regained her balance, returned to her spot in the column and continued unmoved with her disciplined walking.

Simultaneously, and without stopping for an instant or diminishing the martial rhythm that Natalia impressed in our pace the moment we stepped in the surroundings of the Basilica, our group New Way energetically rejected the aggressive woman. Even when she wasn’t touched by any of us and immediately after she approached Paloma, the woman fell down to the floor and stayed immobile in the sidewalk. When New Way entered at last through the left and lateral iron door to the atrium of the Basilica, I thought I heard the woman crying openly and sorrowfully. As a result, and without my own volition, abundant tears rolled down my cheeks.

Unexpectedly and when I was discretely cleaning my face, a new perception grabbed completely my attention: It was the atrium; I felt in all clarity we were in those moments walking slowly over an enormous energetic oven. Everywhere the flowing of calorific energy was coming out of the clay stone floor I was walking through. When I turned and scanned with my eyes its rectangular extension, I perceived a comforting and invigorating heat. I smiled thinking on the abundant benefits that the beautiful Zapopana was lovingly giving all those who stepped into her sacred precinct. I knew I was very fortunate and felt an immense gratefulness for the gift of this perception.

Afterwards, another event required my immediate attention: It was, I am sure, definitely a group perception. I am certain that the whole column perceived this event at the same time. Just when we walked in front of the enormous wooden entrance doors of the Basilica, and in spite of being its immediate surroundings full of church followers approaching in a rush to the beginning of the mass.

When we approached the same space, all the parishioners moved spontaneously to the side to clear our passing though. At the same time a flock of doves flew noisily just above our heads. The pure and noble energy of our group acted in a mysterious way to provide our column with the necessary space to continue its way without stopping the walk.

Without diminishing the walking pace in at least fifteen more meters and ritually surrounding a statue that stands at the right hand of the atrium, New Way commanded by Natalia stopped, ending our ceremonial walk.

In a very spontaneous way, we all closed our eyes to give thanks to the Great Spirit for the end of the extenuating journey. There was no need for words to frame our ritual of thankfulness because we all were an undivided heart.

After a few minutes and inspired by the Holy spirit, we all opened our eyes simultaneously and focused our attention in Paloma who after showing confusion and dizziness for some brief instants collapsed unconscious and powerless over the hard floor of clay stone. Félix and Rosana’s agile intervention catching Paloma just before she touched the floor helped her from getting any harm in the fall.

We all surrounded Paloma instinctively knowing our female warrior had received a blow directed to New Way from the ignorance, the daydream and the darkness. We all knew as well, the Divine Providence had designated her as the most prepared warrior of the column to receive it, keeping in this way, unmoved and unaffected our walking just at the moment of its conclusion.

We all looked at Paloma with love and great admiration. Alicia, with promptness went to look for some water to help on her recovery. A churchgoer that was nearby generously shared some milk he had brought with him in his morral.

Paloma drank the cold milk and recovered in a few instants. We all embraced her. There were tears in our eyes, of happiness, concern, thankfulness, and pure and fraternal love.

Afterwards, without uttering a word, Natalia took Paloma by the hand and silently asked her with great generosity to conclude our memorable ceremonial work leading the column in its final date with our beloved Zapopana. Paloma, with a huge smile and completely recovered, walked with great assurance towards the opened gates of the beautiful Basilica; we all followed her in disciplined formation. We had to place at the feet of the Zapopana our gift of love and energy.

Even when the inner precinct of the Basilica was dimly lighted, the enormous luminosity that was emanating from our beloved generala, our dear Lady, Virgin and Mother of Zapopan, was very evident.

Our Mother honoured us with her blessings. Our group New Way had fulfilled its task. We had finished a large round of Ceremonial walks in our beautiful Guadalajara depositing at the feet of our Mother the energy obtained and safeguarded from several sacred places we ritually visited.

We were all awakening a little more. The collective soul of our México, and Regina, knew about our efforts. Her heroism and sacrifice were not in vain; it will never be in our hearts. Twelve sonorous strokes of the Church bell vibrated in the very depths of our beings.


The Sacred-Ritual Walks

Agustín and Paloma and their group of applied and practical spiritual ecology "New Way" formed by a vigorous and seasoned group of disciplined walkers, decide to create an enormous energetic circle walking ritually through the northwest of the city of Guadalajara. Their work took them to connect ancient sacred routes and to establish new routes in order to energetically connect several sacred places existent in the city.

  • ISBN: 9780986491849
  • Author: Fernando Davalos
  • Published: 2016-12-04 03:35:17
  • Words: 11931
The Sacred-Ritual Walks The Sacred-Ritual Walks