Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. had a dream, just as you and I do. We all have a dream of what we hope to see in our world, our communities and our families. In his speech he speaks of what his dream for the world would look like for everyone . . . his dream was inclusive. In reading through his speech, I was impressed by his words that his dream was his Hope, and, that to realize those dreams required Faith. His dream was a world where everyone was truly Free!
Faith and Hope seem to be words synonymous with religion; however, they are so much "bigger" than a religious affiliation, they are basic Truths. Which lends one to sit in the quiet spaces of his or her's heart and ask oneself, "What Truths do I believe? How do I view Faith and Hope? What does 'Freedom for All' mean to me?"
Another profound writing of Dr. King's is worth sharing at this moment in our country:
God give us leaders!
A time like this demands strong minds, great hearts,
true faith and ready hands;
Leaders whom the lust of office does not kill
Leaders whom the spoils of life cannot buy;
Leaders who possess opinions and a will;
Leaders who have honor; leaders who will not lie;
Leaders who can stand before a demagogue and
damn his treacherous flatteries without winking!
Tall leaders, sun crowned, who live above the fog
in public duty and private thinking.
Consider what all of his words mean to you, and what your thoughts, words and actions show. Dr. King "walked his talk" and what he asked of others was what he did himself. We often forget these amazing teachers that helped our country become Free. If we pay attention, we'll see there are many such amazing people who demonstrate what Faith and Hope look like, and, what and Freedom really means.
Dr King was correct, true Freedom can only happen when everyone is considered and included, no one is above or below another. Here's another one of his statements that might touch a Truth within you:
I sought my soul, but my soul I could not see.
I sought my God, but he eluded me.
I sought my brother, and I found all three.
Who is your brother/sister? Who's brother/sister are you? What's your dream?
I conclude with his words: "Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that!
**Please note** a change to the Wisdom Circle this week. Due to the forecast for frigid temperature Thursday, the Wisdom Circle will be held via Zoom. We certainly want everyone to be safe; therefore, if you would like to check out this circle, send an email to Vicky by noon on Thursday, Jan 20. A link will be sent to all interested parties by 3:00 p.m. We will meet from 6:30 - 8:00 p.m. Until then, stay warm and stay safe! That's: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Monday, January 17 at 6:48 p.m. ET, the first Full Moon of 2022 heralds in a time of change. The indigenous teaching of the Wolf is that when you see one, you have a teacher in front of you! Consider asking the sacred Wolf for any assistance you may need.
This Wolf Full Moon asks us to face our deepest feelings and fears. The power of the Wolf Moon is capable of helping us release what no longer serves us. In addition, the Wolf Moon offers us the opportunity to harness the positive lunar energy that is available.
Since the Wolf is known to be a fierce protector and nurturer, it's presence will assist you as you step-up to the task in front of you. This energy is available through the end of January . . . access it as you dream your visions for 2022.
The Clan Mother that heralds in with the Wolf Full moon is, "Talks with Relations." She is the "Keeper of Learning the Truth" and her color is orange, which represents the enteral Flame of Love from which all human and nonhumans are created. With both of these beautiful, powerful energies present, imagine what can be created and brought to fruition with the warmth of spring!
The Wisdom Circle is this Thursday, January 20 from 6:30 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.. What a timely opportunity to begin a journey with other life-minded individuals who are consciously seeking new visions! This is a circle for anyone wanting to learn, share, and enrich their lives. There was a saying many years ago, "If not me, then who? If not now, then when?" Whether you are just yawning, or deeply dreaming, we welcome all to attend. The cost is your time and energy. A gifting bowl is present for those wanting to return an energy for what they have received.
What is most important is listen to your heart and become familiar with its "voice!" Then "Howl"at Grandmother Moon and watch the magic unfold!
The definition for Vision is: the ability to think about or plan the future with imagination or wisdom. As we sit in the cave of winter, let's consciously allow ourselves to imagine all the possibilities. It would be good to not censor any ideas or thoughts that pop in and simply write all them down as they come through. Your head will want to interject possible consequences, or logical reasons the idea is not possible, simply let it know, it needs to be silent and wait; you'll need it later. The activity in front of you is to keep writing down every idea that presents itself until there are no other ideas that come to you.
This can be a very freeing experience since our ever chattering, advising head wants to control our lives. Be kind and understand these actions are our head's way of helping us manage life. It is; however, our balanced self that needs to remind our practical mind that our creative heart has dreams as well. Our intellectual head needs to respect our emotional heart and listen with an open mind.
If our dreams are to become reality, it requires a respectful, loving relationship between our head and heart. The brain in our head helps our heart beat, and the beat of our heart is required for our brain to function to its full capacity. Therefore, while in the darkness of winter's cave let's use the warmth within our heart to show appreciation for our practical mind by offering some dreams and possibilities for our head to figure out how to bring to fruition, and then, watch the Visions take shape!
With the turn of the page to another year, now is a grand time to set clear intentions for what we choose to create this year. And, it is a choice! All too often we sleep walk our way through life. Perhaps the expression, "Live in the Moment," is interpreted as literally taking each breath as it comes, without thought or intention. There is much wisdom in the phrase, "Live in the moment;" however, it certainly does not mean to "fly by the seat of your pants," or whimsically accept life as it presents itself. As in all things in life, we must take responsibility for what we create, and that begins with having an intention for what you want life to "look like." What goals do you have? What are your dreams? What do you wan to see more of in your life, and in the world? If we fail to ask ourselves these questions and seriously ponder them, than what you get in life is precisely what you asked for . . . whatever it brings you. That means that if life seems tough, a disappointment, unfair and the describers go on; then that is because you lacked the courage to ask for what you want.
Ouch, that seems a bit harsh, Vicky! Well, sometimes the truth is harsh. If you haphazardly allow life to unfold, then accept that is what you called into your life . . . a haphazard series of events. To be a contributing member of society is to consider what you want from life and what you are willing to do to "get there," or see more of all around you. It means taking responsibility for what you have and what you see in the world. If there are no goals, no dreams, no effort made to contribute to a better place in life, a strong society, more fair world, then accept your inaction created your life and the world around you.
Let 2022 be a year of "Goodness." Let it be a year we see things move in a direction that feeds our life with adventure, fun, and joyful experiences. While you are creating, envision the entire world being a place where all things are possible! Where all inhabitants are respected, including Earth Mother! Consider seeing your actions as contributing to your current circumstances and the state of our world. While you are, indeed, a spec on this planet, it is the culmination of those specs that make this world what it is! If you want peace, YOU have to be peaceful!
Let 2022 be the year we see more victors in life, rather than victims. Let each of us take an honest look at our lives and take ownership of what we have created! No one owes us anything, We have the power to achieve whatever we can dream! Let's wake up to the Truth! We dream, We take action and We create our lives, and the world around us! Yes, We do have that much power . . . it begins Within; how are YOU using yours?
The definition of Goodness is: the quality of being morally good or virtuous; a belief in the basic goodness of humankind! "I see you!" I know what you can do, we've done this before; let's do it again! Thank our ancestors for showing us what is possible! We live in the lap of luxury because of their ability to dream and achieve; because of their commitment to Goodness! Here's to an amazing 2022!
Goblins, pumpkins, witches and haunting times! It is, once again, time for scary creatures and sweet treats. What an interesting duality! Yet another example of this and that, over this or that. Observing our current state of affairs in the world, it might be helpful to consider where and why such a contrast originated.
Halloween dates back more than 2,000 years to the Celtic tradition of Samhain, when bonfires and costumes were worn to ward off ghosts. In the eighth century Pope Gregory the III designated November 1st as a celebration time to honor all saints. This became part of the Samhain tradition which was held the night before and was named Hallows Eve which became Halloween. The two traditions also became known as All Saints Day by other cultures. The original celebration was to honor those that had left the physical world and entered into the Spirit world. It became a time to "blend" the sadness of loss to the celebration of honoring the lives of those we loved that no longer with us.
As we turn on our porch lights for the little goblins that carry various bags to hold their treats, it might be a grand time to remember the importance of those that helped us become the human beings we are and to show respect for their lives. Those little goblins have the innocence of spirit that carries an eagerness to savor the sweetness of life, that have yet to learn about the contrast in life. With the light from our porches, we help those little ones find their way to the gifts of life's "treats!" What a grand symbolic reminder to keep the light in our heart turned to its brightest setting! Heaven knows we need that light to help us maneuver our way through these times of great change. And remember, "Be the Change you wish to see in the world!" Gandhi. Perhaps those little ones will be greeted by a generous "witch" that offers sweetness in exchange for their innocent and happy heart!
Our next full moon, referred to as the Harvest Moon, occurs on Tuesday, September 21, followed by the Fall Equinox on Wednesday, September 22. As the chapter closes on another summer, now is a good time to consider the gifts you will gather this harvest season. Astrologically, spring and autumn are the two times our Earth's hemispheres receive equal amounts of the sun's rays, and night and day are approximately equal in length. If you consider an entire calendar year, that's a pretty awesome experience. Ever wonder how that can consistently occur? With all the events we have witnessed with fires, floods and other exceptional climate changes, it's interesting to consider some things stay the same.
Our early ancestors relied on such events to monitor and manage their lives. In Machu Picchu, Peru, there is an ancient stone monument called Intihuatana - which means "Hitching post of the Sun." it served as a solar clock to mark the dates of the equinoxes and solstices. In Mexico, the Mayans built a giant pyramid called Chichen Itza. On the equinoxes, it looks as if a snake made of light slithers down the pyramid's steps. In England, Stonehenge was also built with the equinoxes and solstices in mind. These are but a few of the ancient ways early civilization managed their lives.
Perhaps we can take a lesson from our ancestors and use this Fall Equinox to step back and examine how our lives have changed since spring. Let's make this personal! When you moved out of the winter season and observed the growth emerging from the Earth, what intentions, ideas, seeds and other new endeavors did you plant? Six months later, it's time to carefully examine what has come to fruition since your planting season. Perhaps this harvest will be one that brings an abundance of growth in many areas of your life. Maybe relationships have flourished, your career has advanced, or maybe you finally toned up your body to support good health. Whatever you planted in the spring, now is a good time to slow down and enjoy the bountiful rich color and fullness of the trees and pause to reflect on your growth.
Autumn is the season to sit around a fire and enjoy the fellowship that comes with sharing time with those that enrich your life, or perhaps, a simple evening in front of the fire alone fills your heart. Such gifts of fall help us to prepare for the winter ahead so that during the long nights of darkness we can dream. What new adventure lies ahead for you? Are there any old ideas that you put on the shelf years ago that it may be time consider over the upcoming winter? In six short months, that idea can be brought into the light of spring and become precisely what you are ready to harvest next fall! What's the significance of the Fall Equinox? It's a steady, consistent event that will happen every year. It's up to you what dream will come to fruition next fall. Any ideas?
Let this day be one that renews your heart! Everyday we hear about situations that stir our heart. While we may feel helpless to do anything about it, we can! Prayer has power beyond human manipulation. When we pray, it is generally done in the privacy of our homes or in the presence of other like-minded people who support our prayers. Consider for a moment the prayers we display in our thoughts, words and actions. Those are the ones that have the capacity to bring about the wishes of our heart, that move at the speed of light and catapult change beyond human actions.
Today, take a walk in nature and share your wishes with an attentive "audience," then relax and observe what happens next. What I experience is a renewed knowing and profound confidence that Great Mystery, Creator God is smiling with me as I travel the path back to where I started . . . to my heart! Here is a simple, yet powerful Tibetan prayer you might try:
Loving Kindness prayer:
May you be safe from inner and outer harm,
May you be free from guilt, shame and hatred.
May you enjoy physical and mental well-being,
May you live with ease of an open heart.
May you be awakened to your true nature, which is,
an inexhaustible source of love, compassion and wisdom.
According to the dictionary, Commitment is: 1. "the state or quality of being dedicated to a cause, activity, etc." similar words: devotion, allegiance, or 2. "an engagement or obligation that restricts freedom of action." similar words: responsibility, duty.
Most people these days shy away from the word, commitment, perhaps because the second choice has taken center stage. That being, commitment is now seen more as an "obligation that restricts freedom of action." Responsibility and duty seems to be antiquated and outdated words.
When and how did commitment become less about a quality of dedication, and more about restricting one's freedom? As in every situation, it is all about personal interpretation. So, who needs commitment? Imagine if you will, what the world would look like if everyone felt commitment limited their freedom. Perhaps one week your boss decides to take a vacation and forgets to write paychecks before he or she leaves? Or, the mail carrier or trash collector choose to take a two week vacation without arranging someone else to carry out their duties? What if the local grocery store forgets to order items to restock their shelves or teachers decide to take personal days without obtaining subs? I could go on about such personal choices people are free to make without feeling obligated, or feel a sense of dedication and devotion to the customers or clients they serve.
My vet said something very wise several months back. He leaned back on the counter behind him, crossed his arms and said, "You know what they say about common sense these days?" to which I responded, "What's that?" and he replied, "It ain't so common anymore."
What an absolutely true statement! It seems to me, common sense would say, if my commitment is to my personal freedom, what I feel is important, than I'm more interested in what I want than whether it interferes with your personal freedom. It's the separateness over togetherness. It's me over you. Whatever happened to having each others back, or the statement, "united we stand?"
Common sense requires we "lean back on the counter" and ask ourselves, "what is best for all concerned in this situation?" Common sense would say, "a solution that meets the needs of those involved." To do that we need a sense of commitment to whatever endeavor we begin. IF we have to readjust our routine to complete something we agreed to participate in or get someone to cover a task. so be it. Chances are the readjustment will help someone else out as well, or at the very least, they have you to contact when they need to readjust their schedule for another commitment.
Commitment is an honorable quality that builds trust and shows respect for whomever or whatever organization or event you felt the need to participate. The bottom line is, YOU will be the one that benefits the most because you can trust yourself to keep your word as will those with whom you participate. And if you felt the need to commit, more than like it came from your wise heart, so you know there's something really important for you to learn and share with others. If the time comes that commitment no longer works, have the courage to speak to whomever you made the commitment and rearrange or withdraw your commitment. Take responsibility life is moving you in another direction. So, "Who needs commitment?" I'll let you answer that one.
In light of all the diverse opinions and, unfortunately, confusing happenings, it's often difficult to know what to believe about what you hear. Now is a good time to consider: "What's my intention?" When you hear or read information, with what "ears" are you listening, and interpreting? Are you interpreting what your observe with your intellectual understanding only, which is based on your judgments and biases, or are you using the "ears" of your heart to take in the information and assist you with learning how to discern what is true for you?
The events in the world have provided all of us the opportunity to feel many emotions, it might be helpful to pause and consider, "What is my intention." Do you wish to see a particular way of thinking, speaking and being that is based on how you were taught life "should" be, or do you move into your heart and ask if it's time to learn more about the information? Is it an opportunity to have more compassion and understanding for others in order to feel safe, loved and peaceful?
Throughout your entire life, you are given the opportunity to learn something new and perhaps try it out. It is your emotions that trigger such times of expansion. When you hear something that elicits an emotion within, if you want to truly experience life, follow those feelings to the point of understanding what's been stirred within your heart.
To keep life simple and uncomplicated, try taking a "pause" and then ask your heart for guidance. It is at that point the "ears" of your heart will listen to what brought those emotions and feelings and assist you with discerning what you are to do with what you have heard or read about. The dictionary states intention as a, "Clearly formulated or a planned aim."
To have a solid intention, or aim for life, requires a smooth flowing relationship between your intellectual head, and your compassionate and loving heart. The emotions are the vehicle that help you move through what you truly intend for your life. Whether it's choosing a partner, career, friendship, or any endeavor that stirs your emotions, chances are you'll grow in wisdom, knowledge and peacefulness within if you'll first have a clear intention that is chosen by your Head AND your Heart! The most powerful gift you can have is a solid, trusting relationship within yourself. That is where you discern answers to a full spectrum of emotions from exciting and curious, to confusing and perplexing "happenings" that stirs up everything you may have known to be true.
The next time an opportunity and/or decision is put in front of you, ask ,"What's my intention?" Then turn on both sets of "ears," the ones in your Head and the ones in your Heart!
It was brought to my attention the origins of the expression, "dog days," came from the sky nation! According to the Farmer's Almanac, the "Dog Star," Sirius, is the brightest star in our sky, and during the "dog days of summer," the sun occupies the same region of the sky as Sirius. Actually, Sirius rises and sets with the sun during these days. Because Sirius is so bright, the ancient Romans believed it gave off additional heat. So they referred to this period, July 3 to August 11 (20 days before and 20 days after the alignment of Sirius with the sun) as the "days of the dog star."
While it may, indeed, be the hottest stretch of summer, it's not because Sirius radiates the heat; it's simply a result of the Earth's tilt that time of year that causes the sun's rays to shine down on us at a more direct angle, and for a longer period of time throughout the day. Now, how about that!
What it indicates to me is the intellect of nature, far exceeds human's understanding or rationale, indicating if we truly want to understand the many unanswered questions of life, the most "enlightening" thing we can do is take a walk in nature, ask the unrelenting questions in our head and then pay attention! It might be a squirrel, rabbit, red-tail hawk or any number of woodland creatures that become the carriers of the wisdom we seek.
Let's use these "dog days of summer" to slow down and listen; we just might find out something we didn't know, we didn't know!
Vicky Kelm Williams
I find people absolutely fascinating!