Solocast | Vision Quest Part 1: Honoring Our Ancestors
In Vision Quest Part 1 Josh Trent Uncovers:
- Why he decided to go on a Vision Quest.
- What happens during a Vision Quest.
- Why we fear death and why Josh no longer does after this experience.
- Our connection with Mother Nature as we are part of the earth.
- How to let go of fear; especially the fear propaganda we've seen over the last year.
- Healing Josh received during the first 2 nights of his 4-day water fast experience.
- How Josh connected with his inner child to offer it forgiveness and love.
- Struggles that Josh has faced since his youth and have impacted him over the years.
- The difference between shame and guilt.
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Transcript From Vision Quest Part 1: Honoring Our Ancestors
This is Josh Trent. This is a very special solocast. This solocast is about honoring our ancestors, where I've come from, where you've come from, the Spirit, the Great Spirit that guides all things. And the mother, the Mother Earth, who has supported us from Day One. You know, this solocast was probably the most requested solocast I've ever received. I probably had more people that direct messaged me and texted me and said, “We want to know, Josh. We want to know what was it like after you did a 10 day traditional Native American Vision Quest.” And I am here to say that I have touched death with two hands. I have touched death with two hands and I'm back. I am back from the great beyond and my 41st birthday. I have lessons and light that I'm ripe with this heart that is beating in my chest ever since I took my first, my first breath out of my mother, Mary, my heart has cracked wide open and the river of emotions I feel after 10 days in deep nature in north Idaho, 20 minutes, north of Priest River, Idaho, the emotions I feel for humanity and for our Great Mother are unsurpassed in all of the potent medicine that I have ever received.
Josh Trent (01:29):
The overwhelming message was that you and I, we can choose to live at the pace of nature, or we can choose to die trying to fight her and just let that land because one of the things that Tim Corcoran and Mark Tollefson, my two guides, at Purpose Mountain that guided us – all seven of us. I went with seven people to this Native American Vision Quest, which I'm going to unpack. I'm going to inspire you with my story with this incredible story where I got to touch death with two hands. One of the things that Tim and Mark talk about in the Quest is that you are held by the Great Mother and just feel into that when you're held by the Great Mother you're never lost. And one of the things that we can all do, if you're ever lost, if you're ever feeling like life has kicked you and a relationship has ended, your job has plummeted.
Josh Trent (02:29):
A friendship has gone up in flames. If you are ever lost, if we are ever lost, take your deep breath and stop. That isn't in wildlife. And in search and rescue, there was a phrase that many trackers go by, and that is, If you are lost in the forest stop, because someone is trying to find you. And how is that a beautiful metaphor for how we live our life and how we have our relationships when we are lost, stop, just stop. And that is the one great gift that we all can receive from a 10 – day Native American Vision Quest. But when you stop, you have to be prepared. You have to be prepared to feel all the feelings that were below the surface that are poking through that you didn't want to feel that were uncomfortable. And that's okay because in the stillness, there is wisdom.
Josh Trent (03:32):
There is wisdom in the sadness. There is wisdom in the fear. There is wisdom in the anger and below the fear there is really just love. After coming back from these 10 days, which I'm going to share. I promise I'm going to share. I truly no longer fear death at 41 years old on my 41st birthday. And now just two weeks since I've been back, I do not fear death anymore, but there is a deep sadness because below the fear below the veil of that fear is really just a garden of sadness, rich with the seeds of truth, the truth of sadness that one day I, you, we will no longer be able to practice our gratitude to be in gratitude for the gift of growing and fulfilling my purpose right here with Wellness Force to love and be of service and have kindness for my family, community, Great Spirit and Mother Earth, you know, being angry that we die.
Josh Trent (04:28):
This is another gift from the Quest: being angry that we die comes from the egoic grasp of self-righteousness. Feel into that. When you are angry at the mystery, when you are angry at Great Spirit, when you are angry at nature, how egoic, how much hubris are you sitting on a golden seat on, on a cloud of hubris. Being grateful before we die is actually the gift because we're not making it out of here alive, my friend, We're all going to the great beyond and being grateful before we die, this is what yields a life worth living, where we can truly live while we honor the great mystery. We are all from the earth, not on the earth and we are all home. To begin the story, there is a beautiful saying in prayer that comes from the language and the tradition of the Lakota people.
Josh Trent (05:22):
And it is, “All are related, are all my relations.” And it's a wonderful reminder of our interconnectedness here on earth and of the Spirit within all beings. I'm inspired by Nancy Windheart – to her phrase of all my relations. I honor you in this circle of life with me today. I am grateful for this opportunity to acknowledge you in this prayer, to the Creator for the ultimate gift of life. I thank you to the mineral nation that is built and maintained my bones and all foundations of life experience. I thank you to the Plant Nation that sustains my organs and body and gives me healing herbs for sickness. I thank you to the Animal Nation that feeds me from your own flesh and offers your loyal companionship in this walk of life. I thank you and to the Human Nation that shares my path as a soul upon the sacred wheel of earthly life,
Josh Trent (06:20):
I thank you. To the Spirit Nation that guides me invisibly through the ups and downs of life and carrying the torch of light throughout the ages, I thank you. To the four winds of change and growth, I thank you. You are my relations, my relatives. Without them, who I would not live. We are in this circle of life together, coexisting, codependent, co-creating our destiny. One, not more important than the other one nation evolving from the other, and yet each dependent upon the one and above and the one below. All of us are a part of this great mystery. And I thank you, God, I thank you Great Mystery for this life. And you can feel the tears in my voice because when I flew out on my 41st birthday, I started my Vision Quest at the Austin airport. And it was my birthday and I had my mask off and a woman ran up to me with a fairly large, protruding, obese stomach with two masks on her face and a large 64 ounce soda in her hand, screaming at me saying,
Josh Trent (07:28):
“Sir, sir, sir…You need to wear your mask.” And I just simply turned to her, on my birthday, and I said, “You're okay. It's okay.” And I could see the fear in her eyes, and I can see the fear in so many of our eyes, not just when we're out in public and we see a reflection of self and of love and others. But when we look in the mirror, because I know that any person that I come in contact with and right there on Day Number One, I was given a beautiful gift to beautiful truths. And that is, No one is coming to save you. And that's the great news because you can choose to save yourself. And number two, no one is inherently out to get you; the majority of the fabrication of the egoic mind, the mind that doesn't want you to feel it doesn't want you to try hard and not get there.
Josh Trent (08:21):
It doesn't want you to open up to a lover or yourself or your community and be vulnerable people because you've been hurt before. Well, these two truths are self-evident and of course in special situations, use your intuition. Sometimes someone is out to get you, but overall, overall, no, when you are in rational and irrational fear, when your mind is making up stories, that's a rational fear. And that was the first gift, you know, before any ceremony, it has been said that the moment ceremony starts is when you accept the invitation. And that is what happened for me. The very moment I arrived at the Austin airport on Day One, actually it was Day Zero. I didn't even gone to Idaho yet. I was already given a gift, a gift of these two truths that no one is coming to save me and no one is inherently out to get me. And so I had to put on the mask to fly on the airplane so that I could go receive my medicine. And I felt a well of anger in me, which I'll touch on later. That well of anger is really just sadness. And if we really feel into this, our society is sick. Krishnamurti says, “It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.”
Josh Trent (09:37):
And how is this not the most radical objective truth you could ever hear? So, there I am on the plane feeling into this sickness, the sickness, not just of society, but if I'm being honest, which from this moment forward, I am, and I've always done my best. But from this moment forward, my heart is cracked wide open because I had to take an inventory, not just in the Quest, not just out there in nature with no flashlight, no tent, no knife, no fire, just myself, my breath, my thoughts, a tarp for the rain and the sleeping bag and pad. But I had to take an inventory on that plane. And the inventory said, when did I let go of the wonder? When did I let go of the wonder of life? When did I stop singing? When did I stop dancing? When did I stop telling stories?
Josh Trent (10:28):
And when did I stop honoring the mystery of life again, Mark and Tim, the Vision Guides said, “Whenever someone's lost in the forest, they must stop. They simply must stop because that is how you will be found.” We all need to stop and slow down and pay attention, put down the phone and head out to nature. This is not a passive drug induced hippy prayer. This is the wish of God, of Great Spirit and our Mother Earth who are watching us destroy the sacredness of community, the sacredness of family, the sacredness of earth with our ego and humorous. We think we know so much better than the energy that created us. Look at how self-righteous we have become. And this is the story. This is the beginning of this story. I arrive at camp with all of these thoughts, going through my mind, the radical realizations, not just on the plane and in the airport, but in the car ride, going out to Priest River, which is a two-hour drive from Spokane, Washington.
Josh Trent (11:27):
And on the ride out there, I'm with my friend, Julie, who picked me up and took me to the camp. And I started to already feel the ceremony come through. First night, we get introduced to Tim and Mark and Ollie and Hayden, our guides, our co-guides. First night, radical, radical dreams. And this is what you will find when you are called to a 10-day Native American Vision Quest. The structure of the Native American Quest is that for three days, you do a deep soul in inventory. Really. It's a deep soul inventory. You uncover all the ways of being that have been not loving. And this is confronting; you take an inventory of how you've showed up for those you love when you've abandoned yourself. When you felt something in your egoic self, and use that to override your animal, self, your heart self, your true self, your loving self.
Josh Trent (12:24):
And what came through for me was just this unchecked responsibility and poor management of my stress because I have been white knuckling. And I know you may feel me. If you are like this, are you the kind of person that white knuckles, because you will get what you want at all costs. Well, that's been me too, and I will never forget this moment around the fire in those first three days, really looking at the flames on my hand and my body and knowing that I am an infinite being who chose to be here and a finite existence. And that first night rocked my world because I knew that I was going to get deep healing on that mountain. And my inner young man was calling me. And so, in this Native American Quest, the first three days are ego unraveling and exercises and journaling, and really being with all the parts of yourself, you know, (Carl) Jung talks about the shadow and in all of us is a shadow, a shadow filled with demons, but guess what?
Josh Trent (13:27):
Those demons just want love. And this is the ultimate gift of the Vision Quest, because when you go after those first three days and you walk out into nature, I will never forget going up to the campsite at first light woken up by wolves, howling at it. Must've been 4:45 in the morning. I mean, you could barely see the crack of light over the horizon. And I'm in my little tent. And I just hear these wolves screaming cause they had gotten a fresh kill on the very first day of our four day process, where we went out into nature. After we had selected our site after we had been stripped down after we had done our sweat lodges, where you sweat to the point where you didn't even know your body could sweat that much, the singing, the prayer, the asking for forgiveness. And this is really what we are all wanting.
Josh Trent (14:20):
We want to forgive ourselves. We want God and Great Spirit and our mother, our Great Mother to forgive us. And this is the peace that we're all seeking. And that is the peace that I was awoken by, by animals in nature that get their kill because after the kill there is peace. And after there are certain parts of the older self that are killed, there is peace. And I felt that peace, but I also felt that terror way deep in my heart, there is nothing like waking up to wolves on a fresh kill in nature. As the sun barely cracks the horizon to put the fear of God in your soul. And as I walked up to the group and the fire and I crossed the threshold, walking deep into nature, about 30 minutes away from camp and camp had no cell service. I drew a box with sticks as I arrived to my site at the bottom of the hill and I placed my first stick vertically in that box.
Josh Trent (15:18):
And I knew, I knew that that was the beginning of something where I would never be the same. And in that first night I had radical, radical sex nightmares. It actually, it actually started in the morning because you go out at first light on Day One. So the first three days was ego stripping and really ego inventory, soul inventory. Then there's four days. And when you go out for those four days on a traditional Quest, you have cold weather clothes, a sleeping mat, a tarp, and a sleeping bag and four gallons of water. That's it. So we're talking about no fire, no tent, no knife, no flashlight. You have to learn to befriend the dark. And that very first night I made it – really wells me up with emotion, just feeling it. Now I went out in the morning at first light and I was exhausted.
Josh Trent (16:15):
I hadn't slept the night before. I was nervous about being out in nature – cold with no food for four days and only water, no one to talk to; just myself. And I sat there after I had woken up from really the most tremendous nightmare, I think I had ever had. And it came from when I was foolish, when I was doing my best, but when I was foolish, when I chose to engage with a prostitute in Thailand where I was able to see where I was still not free, where I was still not free because I was battling with my own shame around sex and addiction and mistruths, and I needed some deep healing with my inner young man. And so in this dream, I was watching myself, abandon myself many years prior to the quest, looking at how to the public I wanted to, to be perceived as having an altogether, but deep within my own heart battling with the most visceral addiction, when it came to not feeling safe in my own skin, you could ever imagine.
Josh Trent (17:22):
And on that first night, I let go of the war, which is what we all deserve – to let go of the war with ourselves. We can only heal ourselves when we choose that we're worthy of doing so. And when you are just like, I was put into nature to be held by the arms of a grandmother that you couldn't even imagine how strong she is – how loving, how peaceful she is. That is who we are from. That is who holds us. I woke up and I was terrified because I thought, “Oh my God, is this real?” I mean, when you're out there, the veil between dream and the veil between life here in the 3D is super thin. I mean, there were times throughout those four days where I didn't even know if I was alive or if I was dead or if it was a dream.
Josh Trent (18:13):
I mean, it's, it is absolutely surreal. It blows away any mushroom, Ayahuasca, even multiple breathwork sessions I've had – puts them all in a pale light in comparison to the brutal potent medicine of Mother Nature at her finest. And that is at just peace because there is peace in my heart now as I've come home. But that peace only came on the other side of me waking up crying because of the pain of abandoning myself years prior and learning how to love this young man. Learning how to love my shame. I flashed back when I was sitting there as the sun rose and I was crying and I was just so grateful. I was so grateful for my life. I was so grateful that the nightmare wasn't true, even though the nightmare had occurred many years prior, when I chose to abandon the screaming voice of my inner young man. And that is the forgiveness that I deserved. So I sat down with young Josh and I sat down with my son. I sat down with my son next to me and I spoke to him about the power of forgiveness, the power of love and forgiveness.
Josh Trent (19:34):
I will never forget five years ago when I had Gay Hendricks on the podcast and we're going to be having him on the podcast again. So stay tuned for that. And he told me, “Josh, you have to learn how to love your pain. If you want peace, you have to learn how to love your pain.” I had no idea what Gay Hendricks was talking about. And now I do, because I know from my own experience where I had a three, four, even five dimensional conversation with my seven-year-old self, specifically my 13-year-old self, when I found pornography for the first time, I think my dad had a Playboy on the table. And then from there I got VHS and then DVDs and then the adult film store. And then, you know, all holes, barred when the laptop got pulled out and high-speed internet came into the picture.
Josh Trent (20:22):
That was exactly the safety that I was seeking outside myself, that I love my parents. They did the best they could, but they did not teach me how to be loving and how to be comfortable in my own skin. And so the forgiveness I have for myself is also the loving and powerful forgiveness I have for them. And so I know now that we can only heal generational pain when we choose that we are worthy of doing so, we can only heal generational pain through forgiveness. Through forgiveness. Forgiveness is the antidote to fear. Forgiveness is the antidote to hatred and forgiveness is not something you can read in a book or read in a card. Forgiveness is something that you have to learn through experience. It's how to embody, how to cry through, how to bleed through, how to suffer through and all we can ever do is open the door to our family to enter.
Josh Trent (21:17):
So, I asked that first night, and this is just the first night. I have way more to tell you. The very first night I asked at the altar of freedom without expectation for all my relations to enter my grandfather, Mauro, my grandmother, Marie, my grandfather, Gene, my grandmother, Louise, my brother, James, my mother, Mary, all my relations. My father, Daniel; everyone is welcome. Please forgive me, please forgive me. And I wept, I wept like a little boy and it was the most healing experience that I've ever had because finally, all the things that I had been searching for with Ayahuasca and with mushrooms and with “ceremony.” All the time, it had been under my two feet and that was, I needed the potent medicine of nature of Mother Nature to ground me into her and total silence without distraction in nature for a hundred hours without food and only water so that I could actually understand what she has been telling me all along.
Josh Trent (22:23):
And that is, “I'm home.” I am home. We are all home here. We are not on the earth. We are from the earth and I wept. And on night, Number Two, I gave my seed back to Mother Earth. A lot of sexual shame, a lot of resentment of my decisions. I turned to those and I learned how to love them. I learned how to truly love them for what they are. They are my protector, because if I did not have pornography, if I did not have a way for me to feel comfortable in my own skin, well, then I wanted to leave my skin which is death. And so we have to touch death in order to feel the truth of life. And this is the purity that I gave to myself. I'm laying maybe 20 feet above my site. And I'm up on a mountain in Northern Idaho and it's freezing.
Josh Trent (23:21):
And then when the sun comes up, it's emotional because the darkness has been lifted. And I spent most of my day, you know just being with my thoughts and laying in the sun and kind of chasing the sun around as it would shoot through the trees and little patches on the ground. And there was one moment where I just asked with a humble heart and I said, “Great Spirit. What will you have me do with Wellness Force? What will you have me do with Wellness Force?” Because we have hit this place with Wellness Force where we're growing, but we're not growing to the pace that can sustain the engine for the long-term.
Josh Trent (23:59)
And I said, “Great Spirit, what would you like me to do? What would you like me to do with Wellness Force? Do you want me to burn this entire thing to the ground? Cause I will if that's what you want me to do.” And I, with tears in my eyes, I looked up to the sky and I will never forget this moment. And I heard this voice, this little voice, and the voice said, “Just keep going, Just keep going.” And I knew exactly what that meant. Just keep going and trust and love yourself as you go.
Josh Trent (24:34):
And from an incredible connection of forgiveness and healing from the nightmare that I had had that gave me the gratitude for being with Carrie and having my son here in the world and just getting to be here. I walked over to the campsite. I pulled down my pants and for the first time, since I was 13 years old, I looked down at my cock and I connected the energy of my cock to my heart. And I connected my heart to my head. And I said, I am pure. I give my seed back to Mother Earth. I just kept saying this over and over again. This is pure. This is pure. I come into the earth for my wife and son and family and made this serve as a reminder for me that God's love, God's love – The love of Great Spirit is what ties the sex energy from my cock to my heart to my head.
Josh Trent (25:26):
And as I came into the earth, I cried in the most profound sexual healing I have ever had in my life because I knew that I had come back home. I knew how powerful it was to be here right now. I felt the pride in my heart for choosing to reconnect with the love of the child. And I had this visualization of my lower self as I watched my lower self die. And I sent him love for the journey. It's this little boy holding a black crocodile. I can see him right now. I promise I'm not crazy. I mean, if you understand shadow and archetypes and going deep into the soldiering process, you'll know exactly what I'm talking about, but in nature, it is so much more magnified. And I looked at young Josh and I told him from the heart of a father, it's okay, you can rest.
Josh Trent (26:13):
And I thought of Mark Groves when we did our episode out there and he said, “The child can rest. The adult is here.” The child can rest. The adult is here. And my little Josh with his black crocodile, he walked off into the distance and he looked back and I sent him love for the journey. And I asked for forgiveness and I cried again. I mean, I never, I never cried so much in my entire life as to the degree that I cried during this Vision Quest. And this is Part One, stay tuned for Part Two. As I unpack Day Two, Day Three, and Day Four, and bring home even more wisdom for the road ahead. And if this inspires you, if you feel this in your heart, some of what I've gone through and what I've shared about truly embodying forgiveness has been medicine for you.
Josh Trent (27:09):
Let me know. Wherever you're watching this, post in the comments. Share it with somebody. Part two is coming very soon. And before I do the Part Two, I want to ask you if you'll just take a breath with me and just connect to the part of your heart that was touched by this Part One of the Vision Quest, because really what this is, is about touching death, touching the fact that we are not here forever. And so if there's anything meant to die today, well, then turn to it and do the work so it can die. It is not just the shame that keeps us hostage. It is our gathering of evidence that we should be guilty that continues to burn the fire of the shame. Shame is much different than guilt because with shame comes evidence that you're not enough, something that we put on ourselves.
Josh Trent (28:06):
The shame stories of like, “I'm not good enough because my parents told me I wasn't,” or “I'm stupid. Cause the teacher told me that,” or you know, “I'm fat. Cause my boyfriend and my girlfriend told me that.” We are so driven by shame. But guess what? Shame is so much different than guilt. Guilt is a feeling you get when you did something you felt was wrong. Guilt is when you abandon yourself, when you abandon someone you love or you perceive you did something wrong and in Part Two of this quest and this story about really honoring our ancestors, this Rite of Passage that so many men, so many women, never got the gift of receiving. This is what we will do go into in Part Two. So until I see you in Part Two, I'm wishing you love and wellness.