Contemplations for the Spirit (#10)

Random Card Draw:
Transformation ~ Tenderness ~ Simplicity

As we go through the shape-shifting of deep, healing Transformation, may we show ourselves the same gentle Tenderness we would afford a fragile newborn. In this time of birth & rebirth, may we approach our internal & external lives with the uncluttered focus of Simplicity.

Hmmm, the synchronicity of a ‘random’ card draw, so in line with Lent, & the Vernal Equinox. This season before Easter, & the onset of Spring, presents a prime opportunity for taking stock & regrouping, an invitation to formally retreat. We are encouraged to set aside downtime within the routine of daily responsibility.

We can retreat for a weekend by getting away to a supportive, contemplative venue; or, by reserving daily time & space within our own home. It is the supreme Spring cleaning. Regardless of where we do it, I realize that for most this break from worldly reality is rather a luxury, but for some it is a spiritual necessity. The reward, so to speak? Our angst carries with it unworldly blessings just ready & waiting to shed their disguise & claim their rightful place in our lives.

It is not uncommon to have Transformation foisted upon us, rather than being a choice we are given. It seems that each season of life calls for transition, often for which we are unprepared. Transition can be a super-charged catalyst for forced Transformation & vice-versa. (As is often the case, when it’s happened to me, I’ve felt I had no choice in the matter…except that I DID pray early on in my life for God to care for & direct me in ways everlasting. I wanted to cleanse, & thereby build up my soul, in a way that I could carry forth, not to pass this way again. Geez, as they say, be careful what you wish for! Lol).

I have learned in this journey that Tenderness & Simplicity are key, as the process of Transformation demands a huge dose of time & energy. Over & over, in stages, we die & bloom again. Growing pains are real as we slowly develop & redevelop, ultimately expressing our way outward. Like the babe in the womb, or the larva in the cocoon, may we build a strong foundation from which to burst forth & take flight. Onwards, towards the Light.

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(These little cards you see above appeared in my life via my mother. Originator of the deck is unknown. I give such person credit, nonetheless. Photo by Maggie Begley).

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Lord, Help Me To Remember

Growing up, this hung on our wall at home.  I still hold fast to it’s message.

An Old Preacher’s Greeting To Each New Day:

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“It has been said that Faith is not belief without proof, but rather Trust without reservation, and that Trust, when cared for and respected, encourages the self to bloom. Trust is divine medicine.” ~ The Healing Runes, by Ralph H. Blum and Susan Loughan, page 75.

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Contemplations for the Spirit (#9)

Random Card Draw:

Patience -> Trust -> Clarity -> Synthesis

The cards always speak for themselves, ready & waiting for our personal application. 

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(The little cards you see above appeared in my life via my mother. Originator of the deck is unknown. I give such person credit, nonetheless. Photo by Maggie Begley).

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Of Gentleness and Strength – Welcome to the Year of the Sheep

Originally posted on Mommy Mystic:

Welcome to the Year of the Sheep! Or Goat! Or both! Depending on whom you ask. February 4th, 2015 is the first day of the Year of the Sheep/Goat in both the Chinese and Tibetan calendars – specifically the Year of the Female (or Yin) Wood Sheep/Goat. Although Chinese New Year’s Day and Losar (Tibetan New Year) will not be celebrated until the new moon on February 19th, the 4th is the start of this lunar cycle, and so really the first day of the related energy shift in both astrological systems.

Over the last few years, exploring the energy and meaning of the lunar New Year shift through astrology, imagery, and mythology has become one of my favorite posts to research and write. But I have to admit, despite having been born in a year of the sheep/goat myself (or maybe because of this), I initially found this…

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Around the World in Nine Photos

Originally posted on WordPress.com News:

It’s in the grip of North American winter that I often dream of escape to warmer climates. Thanks to the WordPress.com Reader and the street photography tag, I can satisfy my travel yen whenever it strikes. Here are just some of the amazing photos and photographers I stumbled upon during a recent armchair trip.

My first stop was Alexis Pazoumian’s fantastic SERIES: India at The Sundial Review. I loved the bold colors in this portrait and the man’s thoughtful expression.

Photo by Alexis Pazoumian Photo by Alexis Pazoumian

Speaking of expressions, the lead dog in Holly’s photo from Maslin Nude Beach, in Adelaide, Australia, almost looks as though it’s smiling. See more of Holly’s work at REDTERRAIN.

Photo by Holly Photo by Holly

In a slightly different form of care-free, we have the muddy hands of Elina Eriksson‘s son in Zambia. I love how his small hands frame his face. The gentle…

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Valentine’s Day: The Sacred & The Profane

<3 From My Spirited Soul to Yours: <3

May the sacred & the profane, married in we fractured imperfect human beings, serve as a catalyst towards Wholeness & Perfection.

With worldly love as our teacher, schooling us in the ways of Divine Love, may we find Ultimate Connection in the process of losing our self. 

Whether or not it is obvious, Love is always present. Indulge.

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Little ol’ me, with PTSD?

I’ve been living with terror & anxiety since September 5, 1974, the day my dad died. Helpless, I was 8 & had long watched him shrink, suffer & die from cancer. My #1 & he didn’t even warn me, or say goodbye?! I was in complete shock, sidled with the dread of when my mom would leave me too; as well as the opposite fear & responsibility  of being left alone to tend to her & myself. (She no doubt felt the same way). Mom had sleep apnea although there was no term for it back then. I just remember running downstairs to her bedroom in a panic to see if she was still alive, almost every night. When I did sleep, solitary on the second floor, I had nightmares of walking home from school to a boarded-up house. Once a ‘normal’ kid, my health & well-being were never the same.

At the time of loss, it’s all about survival (mental, emotional & physical). You know, when well-meaning adults say, “The children are so adaptable; I’m amazed at how resilient they are!”  That makes me upset. Duh. When we are a dependent child, what other choice do we have but to be resilient (at least temporarily)?! A lot of times the adults fall apart (openly or not, but kids are sponges, taking it all in) & there is a role reversal that occurs. Adults acting stoic doesn’t help. Strong (including tears), yes. Cold & stoic (denial), no. I felt I was such, for almost 40 years. Coping skills can usually only last so long & take us so far before something starts to unravel.

Some are lucky enough to have remarkable built-in resources &/or outward support of some kind, enabling them to press on, & on, rising up, & up, with remarkable success. Some are likely to become dependent & addicted on other sources in order to slog through. For most of us, our system protects us by allowing us to dissociate from certain traumas. Some are forced to confront deep healing, going through the gunk enough to come out on the other side. Some are not, or do not. The conditions of life are extreme & every soul acts/reacts/copes/thrives in a way as unique as their very fingerprints. Therefore it is best not to judge, under any circumstance. None of us is EVER privy to ALL the information (in regards to our own selves, let alone another)!

I’m glad I didn’t know what lay ahead. For us, a family of six in one house was quickly reduced down to just the two of us, my mom & I. As it is with life, a variety of things ensued for all. Most recently, dementia came for my mom & has been holding us hostage ever since. As much as humans tend to worry about the future & want to know how it’s going to go, I don’t think any of us would really benefit by knowing ahead of time what we will be required to face (even if it were a beautiful dream coming to fruition). In just a few short years life can change dramatically, for better or for worse.

It wasn’t until I got divorced at age 39, did I seek counseling for all the unbearable distress that seemed to surface out of nowhere.  The therapist even went so far as to call it, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder. (I didn’t believe her at first. After all, I’m not a war veteran, at least not externally speaking. Surprisingly I hadn’t read anything about it till just now, that short link above. Hmm, it fits). After ten years of re-associating, I have no doubt of her diagnosis.

From this experience, compassion, empathy & understanding have become my default mode; an automatic state of being which I can offer to myself, loved ones & clients. Though dealing with others & the world at large can still be overwhelming, I’m finally painfully aware & at least know what I’m dealing with. I’m supremely grateful to Dr. Metz for supporting me through this healing  journey with his gift of insight & special brand of energy medicine.

I know my momma isn’t long for this world now. She has yearned to reside beside the heavenly hosts (which now includes, siblings, friends, & offspring). I am getting older by the minute, too! …We shall see…We shall see…How will things transpire for she & me? I can’t help wanting & needing to know… After all, I’ve been waiting with terror & anxiety for 40 years…Who, what, when, where, why & how?!

As I often do, I humbly bow my head & calm my heart with prayer to let go & have faith.  “Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom his love commits me here, ever this day be at my side to light & guard, to rule & to guide.  Amen.”

And, it never hurts to have a Teddy Bear to hug:

Betty Bear & Maggie Bear, courtesy of my dear friend, Sunshine. She lovingly knits bears which she donates to the Mother Bear Project, serving AIDS orphans in Africa. She made these in homage to my mom & I, using yarn that we had donated to her from clearing out my mom’s sewing room (in that ‘scary’ upstairs of my childhood!).
(Photo by Sunshine Psota)

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