Seek Not to Follow In The Footsteps of the Ancients

…seek instead what they sought

Wes Gietz
3 min readMar 15


Photo by Mark König on Unsplash

One of my great joys on the spiritual path has been recognizing that all paths eventually converge at the top of the mountain of seeking. Even in the amazing diversity of expressions, spiritual travellers and seekers have much in common .

First is the belief — the knowing — that there is something beyond ourselves. It is the same source whether we name it chi, healing spirits, universal energy, Tunkashila, Allah, Source, Gitchi Manitou, Jehovah, Intelligent Infinity, God, or any of the many other sacred names.

Another is accessibility of that something. It is available to anyone, at any time. It is, and we use its power for whatever good purpose or need we have in the moment. One wise woman I know — a shaman crone in the best senses of the word — said with a laugh, “It’s like a little puppy dog — always waiting, happy to be called on at any time.”

Another of my teachers said it this way: awareness of the spiritual realm and the ability to work in that realm is your birthright.

We use that power for our own needs for healing, strength, or guidance. In some sweatlodge traditions one of the four rounds is for us, the people in the ceremony. During that round, we make prayers only for ourselves. It is not selfish to pray for ourselves, it is essential. If we have responsibility for others, as we almost all do in some way, we must look after our own selves first. We cannot help someone else if we are in greater need than they. When we keep ourselves strong and well, our ability and will to help others is greater. So we pray for ourselves in that round, sincerely and with humility.

There is at least one language among the peoples of the sweatlodge where the name they use to refer to themselves also means “I am nobody special — not even special enough to be ignored.” When we speak this word, we remind ourselves that our prayers will be heard, even when we are in doubt about ourselves or our worth.

In a sweatlodge ceremony I have often seen things around other people, with messages or meanings for them. One time I asked for permission from the leader of the ceremony to share this understanding, then talked about what I had seen and what it meant. Afterward, one of the other people who was in the ceremony said to me, “That is a great gift you have.” I was at first confused by her comment, because for me the ability to see and hear beyond the physical is a learned and practised skill. All I could think of to say was “Thank you.” This is not a special gift that only a few possess; it is indeed our birthright.

Among the many paths of personal growth and the infinite number of ways along those paths, there is for most of us one rich, juicy, right one to follow; it is our personal path of the many paths to the top of the mountain. And so I say “Seek not to follow in the footsteps of the ancients: seek instead what they sought.”

March 15 2023



Wes Gietz

Lover of Consciousness within and far beyond the physical. Transcended scientist. I offer Past Life and Life Between Lives journeys. At