I’ve been learning a lot about the difference between being Guided by my ancestors and being led by them.
I have struggled with being able to tell the two apart simply because it is all dependent on the type of relationship that you cultivate with amadlozi akho.
Sometimes, things happen in life that eat away at your sense of trust of yourself. You get to a point where you don’t trust yourself with your own decisions about your own life, so subconsciously, you want those decisions to be made for you. You want to be led. That way, should shit hit the fan, you’re not left with the responsibility of the mess that would reaffirm your sense of being a failure; being led is like wanting the goals and path to be decided on your behalf, you just follow.
The basic way that I can illustrate this is to say being led and being Guided is like having a boss vs having a personal trainer.
A boss wants you to do well at particular tasks, for the ultimate benefit of the broader company, they decide the objective, the process and the outcome doesn’t necessarily have much to do with you on a personal level.
A personal trainer, however, sits down with you and the two of you discuss the objectives based on YOUR goals. They then determine what the best processes would be, considering your own circumstances, depending on your physical (spiritual) fitness. You then begin the journey of getting into shape, which is horrible in the beginning and is a lifelong process.
Once you embark on a health (spiritual) programme with your trainer, there will be things that you will have to do less of or more of, there will be new things that you have to start doing and there will be things that you can no longer do. There will be things/situations/habits/people that you can no longer expose your body (spirit) to. It may be temporary or it may be permanent.
Your trainer knows more about more you than you do, it is their job. They know your limits and your strengths. They know when and how you are likely to harm yourself or your journey. They also know the general direction that your life should be going in in order for you to achieve your goals.
Depending on the relationship you have with your trainer, he/she would be able to tell you that maybe going out with that one friend this weekend isn’t such a good idea. That’s because you and that friend will likely land ko chesa nyama and there’s absolutely nothing helpful for you there.
The one thing that I want to emphasize with the trainer analogy is that your trainer cannot train FOR you, you have to put in the work. Every day! You have to constantly work on your Self. Also, having a trainer is a personal endeavor, the work that you have to do is not necessarily for others to approve or agree on.
Ultimately, your Guides are there to help you get to where YOU want to. They have the advantage of knowing you on a spiritual level. Not only that, they know your whole family and the people around you on that level too. They help you align your gifts to your broader purpose in life. But you have to LEAD YOURSELF!
Be open to learning. Be open to change.
There’s no shortcut. You can’t go to a Healer and expect them to solve all of your problems, it doesn’t work like that.
You are going to be ok.
Everything is going to work out.
Writer & Photographer: Vus Ngxande