The Peacock Feather
It's not something I like remembering...
I open my eyes and look up to see a sadhu waving a peacock feather around my head. It was smokey and he spoke in a language I didn't understand.I know now it was either Sanskrit or Hindu. It was smokey everywhere, the smell in the air was nice- sweet but not sickly sweet. When it was over I was taken to the car, sat in the backseat and I was quiet. My grandparents said some things to me but I can't remember what exactly. I turned around...kneeling on the backseat I looked back at the place of the peacock feather.
Why was I there? What was being done to me?
Nothing strange, not to me anyway...I was calm all the way there and felt safe. I was born and semi raised in Trinidad & Tobago by parents...mostly my grandparents. The rest of my 'raising' was/is being carried out in England. My parents were both nurses at General Hospitals then and worked many shifts-day/night, so we (my sister & I) lived with my grandparents. We always saw our parents and often spent weekends with them and holidays. Then we moved to England and my culture was further enhanced. Enough of that, this isn't a family history hub.
As far back as I could remember and am aware of...I saw things. I don't like talking about it because on some level I become fearful. The unknown can often be that way...scary!
So my culture is very mixed- Trinidad & Tobago is very cosmopolitan, so there's overlaps in cultural practices and race. A lot of children are like me-MIXED. One cultural practice known by many is jharay.
Jharay is a Trini term used by local Indians; I'm not sure I the term is used in India. Essentially healing prayers, it is considered a cure for certain ailments like asthma and snake bites. More importantly concerning my life; it dealt with maljo (bad eye from others) or the removal/warding off of bad/stagnant energy from a person's aura.
It is usually performed on babies, infants and children. It is usually performed by but not limited to sadhus (Hindu holy men).Many persons from differing races and faiths perform jharays so long as they learn the prayers and adhere to the lifestyle.Cocoyea (strips from coconut leaves) and peacock feathers are the prime instruments used.
I was hot on the jharay circuit. Nightmares, sleepless nights and changes in my appetitie made me the perfect candidate. Even better when the holy men became aware of my seeing 'things'. What I saw exactly is still unknown.
I don't remember this but when I was 5 or maybe younger, my father took me for a walk in our backyard. I stopped suddenly and told him that there was a tall dark man in a black hat in the house next door. I was seeing him in the window. No one was at home in the house. A Pastor was living there at the time. The next day a woman, was found in there with no signs of a break in, and a very puzzled Pastor who was out that night. She said she was being chased by a man in a hat. How she got in is anyone's guess.
I heard voices- male and female. They would call my name always during a breeze so their voice carried with the wind. One would call me by full full first name and the other by my pet name. When I went to the adults in my home, none had called me. I was told never to respond to them. It happened well into my teens and have stopped since, around 18.
I have sleepless nights especially when something bad is happening to family members or when one is dying. This still happens. It happened this week and I lost a great uncle and a few weeks back- a cousin of mine was brutally attacked in a robbery of his home and his wife raped. I never know something bad is happening for sure. I just feel very strange and get 2-3 hours sleep at most. During the days that follow I find out what drama has unfolded.
When I was at primary school-a Catholic School we often visited the church and learned its teachings. While studying the 'Stations Of The Cross', we walked from plaque to plaque bearing each station, a friend and I got separated from the class...how I'm still not sure. The side door swung open, and a gust of wind so huge blew in, pushed pass me, hurled my friend slamming her down into a pew, about four pews away from where I stood. The class turned around and I stood there scared stupid. My mouth slowly opened and all I could say was 'It wasn't me!'
Many things like this happened throughout my childhood and I was jharayed whenever it was worse. It always stopped. The incidents have lessened with each passing year.
Of the things I do experience are deja vu and dreams where eveything is vivid, so vivid that I see,smell and can touch in those dreams and am subconsciously aware that I'm dreaming. These however are not strange occurrences to the average person. Often I have snippets of dreams and then days,weeks,months later they happen and I'm sitting there thinking OMGosh! this happened already!
This is why I believe in God, the power of prayer. One can argue it's blind faith, that causes jharay to work. Most of my memory is sketchy from age 5-8 but I do have snippets of memory and I'll always remember the Peacock Feather. Not just jharay works for me but prayer as well. It's a personal choice that each individual must make based on their own truths and this is mine. Maybe the answering of my prayers is coincidence, maybe it's all true...but I know what gives me comfort and peace of mind and I'm rolling with it!