|About the Book|
In And So It Began, Rob, a body cut off from the living of life, dies of his old self and is reborn as Bran, the Raven. From the dis-spirited inner darkness of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome And So It Began flies in the face of the ensconced westernMoreIn And So It Began, Rob, a body cut off from the living of life, dies of his old self and is reborn as Bran, the Raven. From the dis-spirited inner darkness of Chronic Fatigue Syndrome And So It Began flies in the face of the ensconced western medical model of disease, relating an otherworld journey of self discovery and a new understanding of dis-ease and wellness. Rob, a successful organic farmer and Executive Director of a conservation organization, Trees For The Future, collapses in questioning despair from the rigours of CFS. This fall brings him to the brink and finally over the threshold of his scientific and cultural rationalism, the defining principals of what he constitutes ordinary reality. Confronted with a waking vision, the barrier to a new manner of perception dissolves. With great difficulty he sets aside his beliefs in the way he thinks things are, the way of the world, the illusion that is consensus reality, and is transported into the otherworld of visions, dreaming and the Spirits of Nature. For Rob, his illness becomes a journey of transition, self knowledge and empowerment. He goes beyond his dis-ease to the very constructions of his ego self and of his images of self worth based upon the doing and creations of career. Propelled by visionary and shamanic experiences he undertakes a number of vision quests. These fasting, pan-cultural experiences in the solitude of the desert wilderness change his life. Rob was not called to exotic lands in search of gurus, shamans or quiet ashrams, his journey is into the wilderness, the darkness within himself, hidden away for fear of what might be revealed, and into the wilderness outside of him, the desert. His toolsare the ancient tools of vision seeking- wilderness exposure and depravation, and through journeying and ceremony. The doors open revealing the ensouled framework of non-ordinary reality, a realm of enchantment and magic, of place and purpose. There was no need for Rob to search for teachers, they were all around him, Raven, Stag, Lizard, Eagle, and the Child of the Mound Born Dead.The story, taken from Jy Chiperzaks life experiences and woven into fiction, begins briefly with the main characters, Robs naming in 1969, flying then into the future, his name forgotten, into a time of inner struggle and self dissolution, it is 1994. Collapse, the demon Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is in control... pain, depression, cognitive disruption, confusion and anger has called him in unquestionable terms to halt, to transform or ever remain in a closed and empty box. What some would call delusion, imagination, fantasy, arising in the hidden recesses of Robs mind was in fact the awakening of his consciousness to the existence of the otherworld of Spirit, a realm as real as the physical, a realm which becomes the truth behind the drama that unfolds.The world of Nature, Spirit, and the shamanic realms, open gateways for Rob, portals to his final reawakening as Bran, who he embraces through the the little death and through rebirth. On the one hand And So It Began is the journey of Rob battling his demon CFS, all but succumbing to it before wakening to the lessons it has to teach him as a soul ally, and as Bran embodying a new, more comprehensive vision of reality, of dis-ease and wellness, of love, compassion and belonging and service to the kosmos. On the other hand it is a chroniclingof a transitional framework to be embraced by any persons seeking the true understanding of dis-ease, vision, purpose and the lessons to be learned in the practice of life.