Monday, April 6, 2009

Spiritual Star Trek DS9 & VOY: Pranayama, Meditation & Animal Guides

Star Trek DS9 2x23 Crossover
Before Kira and Bashir get transported in a shuttle to a parallel universe, they exchange the following dialogue about meditation.
KIRA: Could you take it for a while. (the helm).
BASHIR: Sure. Mind if I put on a little music?
KIRA: Actually, I do... I was hoping to meditate for a few minutes.
BASHIR: Of course. I didn't know you meditate.
KIRA: Every day. (Really Kira? ;p With your temper? Hehe)
BASHIR: I had the opportunity to study meditation with Isam Helewa when I was in college. Remarkable fellow... he sort of took me under his wing... I can't tell you how much I learned from him... the man was a master at rhythmic breathing.
KIRA: (bristles...) You'll have to give me a few tips some time.
BASHIR: Gladly. And I'd be very interested in any Bajoran meditation techniques you'd like to show me.
KIRA: We... just usually like to sit... quietly.
Bashir starts to breathe in what sounds like a pant... after a beat she opens her eyes, looks at him..
KIRA: What are you doing?
BASHIR: Bellows breath. Thirty quick breaths followed by one long intake of air through the nose and hold. Increases the energy flow... here, it's quite simple. (Variation also used here in Incredible Hulk)
KIRA: (no hopes for meditation) How about some music...

Star Trek VOY 1x06 The Cloud
Captain Janeway gets some help from Commander and Shaman Chakotay.
JANEWAY: Exploring this nebula should raise some spirits around here, don't you think, Commander?
CHAKOTAY: No way to go but up.
JANEWAY: You're closer to the crew than I am. How bad is it?
CHAKOTAY: There's a nuanka, a period of mourning that everyone's going through. It's a natural reaction.
JANEWAY: I'm worried about them. I wish we had a counselor on board, but the nature of our mission didn't require one.
CHAKOTAY: We talk to animals. It's a Native American tradition.
JANEWAY: Animals?
CHAKOTAY: Our own counselors. We're taught that an animal guide accompanies us through life. Basically, it's what Carl Jung thought he invented when he came up with his active imagination technique in 1932. But we've been doing pretty much the same thing for centuries.
JANEWAY: Is there a different animal guide for everyone?
CHAKOTAY: Actually, yes.
JANEWAY: Let me guess. Yours is a bear.
CHAKOTAY: Why do you say that?
JANEWAY: You strike me as the bear type.
CHAKOTAY: Thank you. The bear is a very powerful animal. It has great pokattah. But he's not my animal guide. The creature that guides us doesn't define who we are. It merely chooses to be with us.
JANEWAY: Okay. If not a bear, then what?
CHAKOTAY: I can't tell you that. It would offend my animal guide if I spoke its name. (Really?)
JANEWAY: But he guides you well?
CHAKOTAY: Actually, it's a female. But yes, she usually guides me very well.
JANEWAY: Can one just choose their own animal guide?
CHAKOTAY: It's not quite that simple.
PARIS: Captain. We're approaching the perimeter of the nebula.
JANEWAY: Slow to one-third impulse.
CHAKOTAY: If you're interested, I'll be glad to teach you how to contact your animal guide.
JANEWAY: You've got a date.
[Later in the Captain's Ready Room]
JANEWAY: What's this?
CHAKOTAY: My medicine bundle. I've never showed it to anyone before. After what you said this morning, I thought it was important to let you see.
JANEWAY: Will it help me find my animal guide?
CHAKOTAY: Eventually you'll have to assemble your own medicine bundle. But this will allow me to assist you in your quest for a guide.
JANEWAY: Now? Now.
CHAKOTAY: A blackbird's wing. A stone from the river. An akoonah.
JANEWAY: Akoonah?
CHAKOTAY: My ancestors used psychoactive herbs to assist their vision quests. Now they're no longer necessary. Our scientists have found more modern ways to facilitate the search for animal guides. Place your hand on it. And concentrate on the stone.
CHAKOTAY: A-koo-chee-moya. We are far from the sacred places of our grandfathers. We are far from the bones of our people. But perhaps there is one powerful being who will embrace this woman and give her the answers she seeks.
Spiral Stargate Stone to focus on
CHAKOTAY: Allow your eyes to close. Breathe to fuel the light in your belly. And let it expand until the light is everywhere. Prepare yourself to leave this room and this ship and return to a place where you were the most content and peaceful you have ever been. You can see all around you and hear the sounds of this place.
JANEWAY: I know this place. It's--
CHAKOTAY: You must not discuss with me what you see, or you will offend your animal guide. [Those are easily offended animal guides, I never read about this, anyone else know about not sharing this? Maybe part of the "Mystic Path is taken alone"?] As you continue to look around, you will become aware of other life that shares this place with you. It will be the first animal you see. That is the one you will speak to. Do you see an animal?
CHAKOTAY: Speak to it.
JANEWAY: What do I say?
CHAKOTAY: You know what you want to ask.
*computer beep*
JANEWAY: I'm sorry. I should've asked the computer for no interruptions. Come in. [Half-Klingon and former crew member of Chakotay's Maquis ship B'Elanna Torres comes in]
JANEWAY: The Commander was introducing me to my animal guide.
TORRES: I hope that you have better luck with yours than I had with mine.
CHAKOTAY: B'Elanna's the only one I know who tried to kill her animal guide. [Oh that (half-)Klingon Star Trek humor!]
JANEWAY (V.O.): A-koo-chee-moya. We are far from the sacred places of our grandfathers and from the bones of our people. But perhaps there is one powerful being who will embrace this good crew and give them the answer they seek.

1 comment:

Christopher Andrew said...

The spirit path to finding your animal guide is as serious as standing before a cliff. Your thoughts upon this journey are considered sacred guiding. This voyage is taken alone, away from the looks of any civilization, for a day to several days or weeks. Preparation is a must and only simple and necessary items for accommodations only. The preparation is clearing your mind and body from distractions until you are ready to ask for the assistance to realize your spirit guide, you must ask with diligence and conviction. Time does not matter here. Devotion is key. Your mind must be firm in its intent and question (limited and short) to this unseen guide. First you must acknowledge your sincere power, do not doubt yourself. Start by asking ask to see your spirit guide in your dreams before you sleep. Strong intent and emotion help in this quest. Much love.