The surprises of Life continue to amaze. In choosing my touchstone word for the year, the consequences are completely unexpected. My routine is caught up in “Transformation” regardless of the original intent, humbling and irreverent as always.
Thus, my blogposts catch me in moments of imprecision, making it difficult to capture, in words dilemmas and paradox. Ah well…such is the path.
I will remain open to the continuing unfolding of events. The only thing that I am able to do right now is pay attention to the body. It is happiest when connecting with All My Relations of the Natural World.
Lots of “New” things happening today. It’s the beginning of the New Moon. It’s the beginning of Spring. There are many ways to look forward to these beginnings. In keeping with the third feminine truth of this cycle, ALL PATHS ARE ONE, I have immersed myself in the writings of the great literary and intellectual American, James Baldwin. Though his era is bygone now nearly 50 years, his writings have historical relevance in our 2015 present. The added benefit is that he is a beautifully eloquent writer of prose. It’s a nice artist date to partake of his words.
Before I use a quotation from the book, Baldwin: Collected Essays, edited by Toni Morrison, I would like to preface that many of my students have repeated told me that I help them walk their personal path with heart without interference. That is, I help them see that a life of meaning is imbued with personal symbolism. Each of us have our own way of looking at and responding to the world. Indigenous wisdom honored the personal visions, dreams and inspirations of the individual. In giving each individual this respect, the community was thus enriched because potential was valued. This is another manifestation of this cycle’s truth.
I give you a quotation from James Baldwin’s essay, “Nobody Knows My Name”.
“Human freedom is a complex, difficult–and private–thing. If we can liken life, for a moment, to a furnace, then freedom is the fire which burns away illusion.”
Last week I asked my students to revisit a meditation to practice forgiveness with a worthy opponent. Simply speaking, a worthy opponent is someone who is a mirror for one’s shadow. Since I do the exercises along with my students I chose to have a conversation with my mother. My mother has definitively been in worthwhile opposition to my being. I may thank her for embodying traits and beliefs that I did not want to resurrect in my lifetime.
There are many instances where she tried to steal my power. Without recrimination, in this meditation, I chose to face her and let her know that I forgave her. She is sad now, alone, and is losing her mind. Her intense self-importance tethers her to the present. I feel her mortality and mine.
Concurrently, I received my Sun Magazine subscription with an interview with Katy Butler. She wrote, Knocking On Heaven’s Door: The Path to a Better Way of Death. The interview and excerpt from her book reinforced my attitude about my own death. I want to be able to discuss it freely with my loved ones. I take every opportunity to do so because I want my family to be clear about my choices to have a dignified death. I don’t want any last minute medical interventions which may force undue burdens because of grief. Butler shares her experiences with her parents’ deaths. I have mine with my father-in-law. I especially liked her description of the 5 things that you should strive to say during the transition to death: Thank you, I love you, please forgive me, I forgive you, and goodbye.
My husband has asked me if I am frightened that I may end up like my mother and I have to chuckle. I have no fear. I have constructed a life in defiance to hers. I do want my death to be the way I want it to be. As a gift to me my husband spent a huge amount of time researching the laws about “Advance Directives”. I have my advance directive sitting on the kitchen table now. It makes me happy. All Paths Are One.
Indigenous wisdom provides teachings of a woman’s power time. The lessons show that one of her post powerful times of creativity coincides with her menses. Even if women are past the age of bleeding, Grandmother Moon offers an opportunity to see the creative force of power by reflecting it back when she is full. The full moon cycle includes the days preceding and following the full moon.
I usually ask my students to set this time aside to meditate on something that they wish to pull into their lives. Offering a fully realized visual image which includes how you will gift others when what you have achieved becomes material is a beautiful way to acknowledge your interconnection with All Our Relations, as well as honor the third feminine truth, All Paths Are One.
Last week I was confronted with the habitual patterns of interaction I had developed with significant individuals in my life. Resisting change, I wanted to cut away that which I thought would end my distress. After a few hours, I found that the resolution was woefully inadequate. In fact, my distress had only increased so I concluded that this was not the answer I was seeking. Rather, I am a woman who is compelled to be open to change and the power of love. After a good night’s sleep, I awoke to a beautiful mantra, “Surrender to the Great Spirit.” Consequently, that day, every time I felt an anxiety well up inside of me, I simply repeated the mantra and felt tremendous peace.
Within 24 hours, a new resolution appeared in the form of a spontaneous trip to Seattle, WA where I could benefit from a change in scenery and, ultimately, perspective. There, I was miraculously shown mirrors of my habits. And, from being able to see them so clearly, a healing pathway literally opened up before my eyes.
Surrendering to the infinite creativity of nature is a wondrous and magical delight.