Spider Medicine: The Storytellers

Black Widow bit me in a dream early last week. I had completely forgotten about it until she appeared again in ceremony for a client. She stood 10' tall in my living room, her back grazing the top of the ceiling in time with the exhale of her breath. She hunched her massive frame downward to meet me face-to-face; my image reflected a thousand times in her own.

"This is sacred space here," I state firmly. "Only those of the highest and the best are welcome." She didn't move. She didn't flinch an inch. Instead, she held her ground and commanded that I get on her frequency. Her level. I understood very quickly that I had a guest in my home.

"Okay, Grandmother Spider. I see you and I acknowledge your presence. What is it that you want me to know?"

Satisfied, she shrank to the size we recognize and began to climb up a single thread of gold.

"All stories of the ancient ones are stored in the threads of the Spider,” she said. "Like strands of your DNA, we hold the records of these tellings and help spin the strands of thoughts into a complex but cohesive structure.

All the great tellings are retellings the story-makers adapted. The story-makers must learn to come forth in new ways to reach the people of their times."

The widow spider reached to top of golden silk, a thread tied to the finger of an Abuela in the sky. Grandmother Spider climbed into Abuelas palm. Abuela swallowed her whole. As she opened her mouth and rolled out her tongue, hundreds of millions of baby widows poured from her belly. Each spun their own golden thread and dangled from her fingers, lowering themselves onto the people of the earth.

I watched as each of these spiders bit a person. That person became intoxicated by an idea, a telling of truth or story never known to them. Some acted upon this inspiration immediately and began to furiously record the idea down. Some fantasized about its perfection, while others hoarded the idea in fear of losing it to another. To those who chose to keep the idea in fantasy or in fear, the widow spider showed its belly, a red hourglass: their time was up and the idea began to wane. No longer were the words present. No longer was the idea whole. The spider's gift, the toxin of the memory from the great elders had worn off on the mind of the living. And off Spider went to find someone new to share its gift with.

To those that honored the teaching with retelling, they received more attention and more inspiration until the singular strands of thought had been spun into a web that became capable of nourishing life on its own.