Last Saturday there was an Ara-meeting in Amsterdam. We had planned to meet in front of the Artis entrance. Artis Royal Zoo is the oldest zoo in The Netherlands (founded in 1838) and situated in the heart of Amsterdam. Zoos always give me that ambivalent feeling: on one side I love to see the animals, but on the other side they are in captivity.
We had decided to go to the zoo, because we wanted to observe our power animals. Although we had planned this meeting months ago, half of the group couldn't make it. I met Sorcha at the entrance and Kat joined us somewhat later. Sorcha has a wolf totem. The two wolves in Artis have a great place to live with a lot of privacy. Unfortunately there are no bears in Artis anymore so Kat had to turn to the raccoons to watch them. We all spent time observing our animals.
Artis has a black panther called Inaia, who shares her habitat with her spotted sister. I was glad to read that their space will be much bigger in the near future. Artis can't expand because it's in the city centre, so they have chosen to keep less animals in bigger habitats. Inaia was pacing at the front of the fence, difficult to look at... Later she went to a corner to lie down and enjoy the sunshine. I made lots of pictures. In many ways a panther really is a big cat; I saw so much I recognised from my cats at home. Inaia is beautiful and she moves in a soft and smooth manner.
When we came back together we sat down on a stretch of grass. We cast a circle from hand to hand and passed energy. Then we went into a pathworking (the same one but on our own) to do a cone of power for the animals. It was a wonderful experience for me.
We were sitting in a circle and our animals were around us. Bagheera, my black panther companion, was lying half behind me with her head next to me and a paw in my lap. We built up the energy and released the power of the Cone in a bowl of water. From there a fountain formed until high in the sky and came down covering all of Artis, including us. It was a wonderful sight. After that I walked with Bagheera to Inaia. We went into the cage. The two panthers touched noses. I put my hand on Inaia's paw and Bagheera put hers on top. Together we exchanged energy and connected on a level we could all feel, connecting to all the panthers on the earth. It was a very magical and touching moment. I returned to the others and in an instant I was really back in Artis.
Artis was closing, so we slowly walked to the exit. In another part of Amsterdam we met with two of the others to have dinner and catch up on things. It was good to see eachother after quite some time! In October we'll have a workshop weekend in Otterlo again and we are already making plans for our initiation in Italy in May next year.
my Artis pics