In the book, Journey to Ixtlan, Don Juan Matus juxtaposes Carlos Castaneda’s self-importance by performing a seemingly ridiculous display of talking to his plants. He spoke to them as if they were his closest friends and lovers. He caressed them and fondled them. Don Juan’s message was clear: if you can’t bring yourself to do this, you will never be able to understand real power. I love this exercise in humility and frequently ask my own students to get down on their knees to the plant world.
This past month, I was honored to be referred to as a Plant Woman by another remarkable Plant Woman, Robin Wall Kimmerer, who recently published the book,Braiding Sweetgrass.
I love to revere, caress and fondle my sweet, darling plants. I love to converse with them in soothing, melodic notes. I love to scold them too. They laugh and giggle at my antics. We have playful battles in my garden. They challenge me and don’t mind when my aesthetic sense of what I want my garden to become determines that I may pull them out by their roots. They like to please me. They tell me it’s OK because they will endure no matter what I may do. And so it is that in the next season of the ripening moon, I see their sisters and brothers all around me.
From the vantage point of the North position on the Medicine Wheel, we look at our third feminine truth, “All Paths Are One”, for the last time before the fourth New Moon’s arrival on Saturday.
Mars has left it’s retrograde status after 11 weeks. Mars helped us realize that our heart movement comes through and by change and conflict.
I leave you with these wise words from Don Juan Matus, Carlos Castenedas’ great Yaqui teacher:
“Now we are concerned with losing self-importance. As long as you feel that you are the most important thing in the world you cannot really appreciate the world around you. You are like a horse with blinders, all you see is yourself apart from everything else.”
An introduction to the feminine energy field includes the diety principle. Another way of expressing diety is duality or two. Here, I refer to a concept of two forces both in opposition and in balance with one another. The field in direct opposition and balance to the feminine would be the masculine. An accepted and common interpretation is “Yin/Yang” from our Eastern relations. In the Americas, Don Juan Matus named the diety, the “Nagual/Tonal”. Carlos Castaneda called the “Nagual” a state of non-ordinary reality. From his study with our relations in the West, he was attempting to define the feminine energy field.
I first learned about the feminine energy field from Carlos Castaneda (1925-1998), an anthropologist and author of many books. His first book is entitled: The Teachings of Don Juan: A Yaqui Way of Knowledge. I heard him give a lecture when I was a sophomore in college. That lecture changed my life. One of the reasons was that Don Juan was an indigenous wise man from Mexico. Since my grandparents were from Mexico, the idea that this sophisticated and yet magical wisdom flowed from there was intriguing and appealing. Another reason was that the ideas that Carlos spoke about resonated with me. I felt at home. I felt alive and connected. At that lecture I set a wish in motion that I might learn about indigenous wisdom from the Americas and have an apprenticeship similar to Carlos’.