Reconstruct Yourself (After You Destroy Yourself).

Everybody’s constantly being destroyed and rebuilding themselves, some more drastically than others.~Michael Shannon

Destruction Of Ego
Doug ran out of glue halfway through the exercise!

Doug ran out of glue halfway through the exercise!

Most cultures and spiritual paths in the past had an initiation that involved the destruction of the self so that a person could be remade by the gods,spirits, ancestors or whomever else homage was paid to.

Of course, we’re not talking about actual destruction! Don’t go cutting off limbs and expect Doug or me to sew them back on… We can hardly manage buttons on our shorts.

This initiation was sometimes reserved for holy people or shamans, but it can be used by anyone.

I’ve used different versions of this process to symbolically disassemble myself, remove parts I didn’t want and remake a new me.

This process can be a bit disturbing at first. Humans in general are squeamish about death, even the metaphorical kind. It’s important to not fear death and destruction of self though, because it’s the natural progression of our lives.

Below, I’ll present an exercise that’s based on shamanic practices from various cultures. I’ve simplified some of it, mashed it together and present it as something new. Give it a try!

Make yourself into what you want to be.


Close your eyes and relax. If you’ve been following  along with these exercises, visualize your entrance you created in a previous exercise.

Enter the opening you envisioned and descend downward. Keep going until you emerge into your inner space.

Become comfortable where you are, and relax some more.

Imagine shedding your skin. Peel it off like a snake… There’s no pain or even discomfort. Remove your skin completely and drop it in a pile.

Pull of your muscles and add them to the pile. Visualize each piece, your bicep, forearm, jaw muscles coming away from the bones until you’re flesh free.

Take out each organ, one at a time. Examine them and add them to the pile.

Now remove each bone from your body and add to the growing heap of you. Continue until there’s nothing left but your consciousness which is observing this process.

Pile some wood onto the pile of you. Imagine setting it afire… It burns until there is nothing left but ash. See yourself reduced to ash…

Visualize a stream of water working its way towards the ash. Imagine the water soaking the ash, mixing with the ground and turning to mud and clay.

Start rebuilding your bones with the clay. Allow only good and positive elements to be used in the construction. Continue until your skeleton is complete. 

Add your organs… Now your muscles… Give your attention to creating each piece and placing it where it goes.

Form new skin for yourself and place it on your frame.

You have destroyed yourself and remade yourself as you wish to be…


Connect With Your True Self Series Home     Next: Declutter Your Life!




  1. I like this Doug and will try it.

    1. Let me know how it goes for you Lionel…

  2. I love this visualization/shaman exercise and will try it tonight when I meditate. Thank you!

    1. Let me know how it goes for you…

  3. This is a much easier approach then I’ve experienced! Hey, if life hasn’t ripped you limb by limb and destroyed your life to ashes then I would recommend this before it happens!

    Yes, this is a very natural process as Deepak Chopra speaks of in The Secrets Of Life (I believe that’s the title) where first he goes into how our bodies work and explains the universe one process being cell death. We are literally dying and being recreated every day!

    In shamanism when working with spirit guides in animal form, teachers, and other beings they will eat you up, poop you put, vomit you out and do what looks like awful things but all in all they are truly trying to bring death to certain aspects of yourself so you can become who you came here to be. In my unfortunate case I think every aspect of my inner and outer world has been obliterated in the worst ways, lol. Laughing now wasn’t then!

    If you ever find yourself in a truly life altering spiral of death and destruction let it be. Don’t fight, let everything go and as the article says remake yourself in a better way. Its absolutely worth it! Thanks for this article!

    1. Thanks for the comments- I’m a shamanic practitioner and decided to share this post in a way that would reach others of different beliefs… I feel the process is important no matter what brand of spirituality you hold dear, or don’t hold.

      I’m glad you’re following along with the posts!

  4. I like the whole ‘deconstruct to build new’ philosophy. I enjoy drawing creatures and monsters with big mashy teeth, but truth be told I’m kind of wussy. So I replaced the bones and sinew breaking down with a melting WIcked Witch. I threw water on myself and imagined melting into a puddle only to reemerge from the ooze – does this count or was I cheating?
    AnnMarie 🙂
    I like your writing, humor, compassion and your, oh excuse me, Doug’s art very much. 🙂

    1. Hey AnnMarie- That’s not cheating- do what feels right for you. Thanks for taking the time to write about your experience and to share your kind words.

      I’m sorry it’s taken a few days to get back to you but I’ve been on a a vacation from blogging, sort of. My wife’s a teacher so we do lots of stuff during the Summer.

      1. You should apologize for having a life! Just kidding of course 😉
        No worries. It’s wonderful taking time off from technology and everything else, especially if you’re sharing it with someone special. 🙂 Ever since I became a substitute teacher, I have a new respect for teachers. I had no idea how difficult their jobs really are. I give your wife credit beyond. So please lavish her with beautiful vacation experiences! And enjoy your summer too!
        AnnMarie 🙂

      2. I can’t let her see this response! She’ll expect more than she already does… The monkey and I are already run ragged…

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