Did you know that peanut butter and jelly sandwich you are eating is about 400 gazillion years old? It’s true! Believe it or not. Every cell, molecule and atom in your body is 400 gazillion years old, maybe more. In fact, everything in existence is gazillions of years old. (By the way, for all you mathematicians out there, I don’t know if gazillion is an actual numerical value. I just made that up.)

Every particle in the universe is born from a supernova. There is not a single piece of matter in the entire universe that didn’t start off as a star. The elements are born when… a star goes into the supernova phase, and the elements that make up all matter are stardust that comes from the supernova. There is new matter being born with every supernova that happens.

How A Star Works, and Then the Supernova

First the sun starts off as ball of hydrogen gas. The gravity causes two atoms of hydrogen to collide and fuse, creating helium, and the nuclear fusion produces a lot of energy and causes the start to shine.  A burning star is hydrogen being fused into helium. This is what creates the “power” of the star. As the helium is created, gravity moves it toward the center of the star, as it is heavier than hydrogen.

The helium elements continue to fuse, creating carbon, and more energy is released. As this increases and the hydrogen decreases, the star becomes a red giant.  As the carbon nuclei fuse, it forms Neon. As the neon nuclei fuse, oxygen is formed, then comes the next element, silicon, then nitrogen which decays to form iron.  As the iron becomes more and more present, the gravitational force increases and the star begins to condense again, getting hotter. No longer is it a red giant. As the gravity fuses the iron, it absorbs the energy rather than putting it outward, and the iron is turned into alpha particles and the neutrons and protons are compressed even more.

Eventually a critical mass is reached as the star implodes more and more, and a rebound explosion happens. This is the supernova. This is what creates all the elements, as nuclei fuse and become all the other elements. It is a chaotic and haphazard combining of nuclei, and as they escape into the space around the star as it explodes, they are free to become other things!

This is all put in very simple terms. It is actually a bit more complicated than this, but for the sake of keeping this article as short as possible, I am just putting it in a nutshell for the most part!

The Journey of the Elements

If we look at the esoteric level of this, it’s mind boggling. Can we even imagine the history that the atoms have that make up our bodies? What must be the experience of gazillions of year old atoms? Atoms are sentient in their own right, and they have a memory of what they have been. If you could even see an inkling of what an atom’s experience was since its beginning, you would be flabbergasted! Could a human mind even hold such an enlightenment? We would probably have a system crash in our minds like a computer that doesn’t have enough RAM.

In our shamanic ceremonies, we always encourage people to really take in the memories of what they eat, even the water, as each thing, a vegetable, a fruit, a grain, an animal, even the water itself, has had a lifetime of its own, complete with memories of those forms it has taken. When you ingest something, it becomes part of you, the memories too, embedded into your cellular memory.

Think of the life of the vegetable, fruit, grain or animal you are eating, and let it come into your consciousness. (That’s why I always tell people who eat meat to be careful what you eat. Make sure it is an animal that had a good life, and if it was killed in a way that it didn’t see coming, because if the animal had a terrible life of fear and sadness, and experienced terror at the time of its death, you are eating the energy of fear.)

When you drink water, think about all the places it has been. The water has been drunk by the animals who lived before us, even the plants. The water has experienced many forms, like rain, mist, oceans, rivers, lakes, clouds and underground aquifers. As our shaman Salvador says, who works at our Gaia Sagrada Shamanic Retreat Center in Ecuador, the water has been drunk by our ancestors. If you consider the memory of all these things, you are filling yourself with wisdom and experience. That’s huge!

In The Beginning…

If we take this concept even a step further, we can tune into the beginnings of the universe, if we consider where the matter that makes up our bodies comes from and the journey it has made. First the elements in our bodies were a star, then experienced the supernova explosion (perhaps this is where our idea of the big bang comes from in our ancient memories), then planets are formed, and biological life emerges slowly. Then the elements, as part of the earth, become part of our bodies as we grow, eat food, and drink water.

Each 7 years every cell in our bodies has been replaced, meaning more elemental matter has become part of who we are, with its new memories, gaining new memories while it is part of us. These elements have an experience while they make up the whole of our bodies. When the elements are eliminated from our bodies, or we die, they return to the earth.

Once again, the element travels through the experience of being part of the earth, then moving into the plants, then being consumed again by an animal or human, and again having an experience in our bodies. How many times might this element in you have been part of someone else or something else in the past? How many more lives will it live in the future? Amazing when you think about the cycle of the elements and what their journey is.

We Are Stardust And To The Stars We Return

Let’s go even further with this concept. In your meditations, see if you can go back to the beginning of time, the beginning of all things, and ask for the cellular memory within yourself to reveal itself. You have more information in the matter of your body than you can even imagine. If you can even move into the tip of the iceberg with these ancient memories, you could be far beyond many people with what you are aware of. Go backwards in time and learn about your beginnings in meditations. If you go forward in time, you will see that you return to the stars, as it all ends up in a black hole at some point, from which universes (and stars) are born.

We are all stardust. Our consciousness is what animates the stardust and gives it experience. Let us remember where we come from and awaken to the truth of our reality. We are not the struggling humans we think we are. We are all born from a bright shining star. Every single one of us!

When you are in a moment of despair again, or feeling sadness or anger, remember once again where the matter in your body comes from, and in fact where all the matter around you comes from. It will be hard to continue just being a finite, struggling human when you think of this! You are phenomena coming from a star. Next time you’re talking to someone, remember, it’s a stardust conversation!