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!
This month's Wisdom Circle will be held Wednesday, June 16 at 6:30 p.m. We're "bumping it up" a day to utilize the cooler evening that will support the opening of the ceremonial fire ring. Over the winter twigs, branches, pine cones and other debris that was dropped from the trees (Standing Ones) are gathered; these gifts are then used throughout the summer and fall ceremonial fires. It is through the sharing of laughter and stories of family and friends that gather around the fire that we grow in Wisdom and gain a deeper appreciation for life and love.
With the fire, we are given the opportunity to burn away old habits and beliefs that are ready to be shed from our life. We do this with much love and gratitude for what those old ways offered and taught us as we moved through our life experiences. Just as we weed through our closets, clean our garages and donate the things we no longer need, so we sort through the old ways of being and thinking that have shifted and changed in our lives. These are but a few of the "giveaways" we offer the fire in exchange for the Wisdom that returns and becomes part of the evolution of our souls!
Bring something to sit on, a blanket for your lap, some twigs, pine cones, or other debris from the Standing Ones in your yard and join us as we listen to the ever-evolving wisdom of others that bring their open hearts to this gathering. As always, if you have questions, use the contact page. We look forward to sitting around our first fire with whomever shows up to share a bit of wisdom and a whole lot of heart!
(Also, masks, gloves and hand sanitizer are on hand!)
Racing around the track at 220+mph? Probably not; however, many of you will be watching the “Greatest Spectacle in Racing” from the comfort of your homes. And, this year your friends may be sitting beside you. What a difference a year makes!
This past year has offered all of us the opportunity to take a closer look at how we live our lives, what brings us joy, and all to often, what serves as a distractor in our lives. This pandemic has opened our hearts to what’s really important; and things are not at the top of that lists. It’s the human interactions; the routine events, customs and habits that help us find a sense of security and certainty to life. We can always replace “things;” they are mere comforts and/or conveniences in our lives. Human relations are more difficult to replace or substitute. Oh, sure, we can move on in life if someone has left our live; however, relationships require time to heal from in order to move forward. And that is not an easy task. Doable? Yes, but not without a great deal of deep sorrow within our heart and a whole lot of healing.
The things we get used to and lose in our lives pale to the loss of a relationship. This year we have all felt the discomfort and painful experience of having our lives turned upside down, and yet, most of us have adjusted. That said, as our lives have returned to some sense of normalcy, now might be a great time to reprioritize the things and people that really matter.
This Memorial Day might be a perfect time to consider those that gave their all so we might have the many freedom we often overlook. This year has offered most of us the opportunity to notice those freedoms and gratefully reclaim what might have taken for granted.
Racing around the track of life at 220+mph? Not this past year! Now is the perfect time to reassess how you spend your time, money and, most importantly, your heart. Let this Memorial Day be a reminder of the importance of sharing your heart with those you love, and loving the human interactions, routine events, customs and habits that enrich your life. It’s a great time to eliminate those distractors that keep you from what is truly important and leave the 220+mph to the professionals!
. . . Bring May Flowers" is a common phrase most people are familiar with. Did you know it originated in the United Kingdom or Ireland? And that it serves as a reminder that even the most unpleasant things can bring about very enjoyable experiences? It is also a lesson in patience and holding an optimistic attitude while moving through unpleasant events in life. Such simple and familiar phrases are often spoken without considering where and why it was first coined.
The sound of a morning shower brought an early wake-up call that kicked my heart in gear. There is something very serene and gentle about a rain shower that seems to soothe my soul. Thunderstorms are another story and yet they, too, offer us the opportunity to ponder such acts of nature and consider how our heart feels during such events. For me, thunderstorms jolt loose stuck emotions that are ready to be addressed and moved through. In either cases, nature is offering us the opportunity to feel on a very deep level.
This morning the sounds of nature brought my attention to the emotions of certain situations that I had put on the "back burner." I'm grateful to be examining these feelings with the gentleness of the morning shower, rather than the fury of a thunderstorm.
And with these rains, everything is coming alive! That stirs my heart and spurs me on to focus on what is springing forth after the long winter months of silence. I'm ready for movement, play, gathering with those I love and accepting that it may look different than it was before Covid. And that's ok too! I am one of the fortunate ones that did not lose a loved one to this pandemic, how can I complain about having to modify activities, wear a mask or take a vaccine when multitudes have an empty space in their hearts from their losses.
As the rain falls in your neighborhood, consider counting your blessings, it just might bring more love and joy along with the flowers in May and color your world with beauty!
Warmth, opportunities, greening of the landscape and the emergence of rich colors are but a few of the gifts of spring. Astrologically, the New Year begins with the Spring Equinox on March 20, thusly we have yet another opportunity to set intentions for 2021. This is a time the sun moves North across the celestial equator, and night and day are of equal length. After the darkness of winter diminishes and light increases we may feel a building of imaginative and creative energy. We live in a dense, physical world where shadows exist, while carrying the radiant light of the sun in our souls. It is that balance point that helps us walk the path we chose with clear intention and purpose. Spring is a time to celebrate the freshness of life and allow the energy of birth and newness to assist us with bringing forth the dreams our heart birthed during the stillness of winter.
What awareness did you heart bring to your attention? Call to nature to help you know how to bring those dreams forth. Step outside and observe how the plants emerge from Earth Mother and consider designating a specific day each week to check its growth. Now might be a time to set a regular walking routine to help broaden your scope of observation. Consider it a walking meditation in order to make this a time of noticing, not thinking!
Connecting with our senses and consciously choosing to notice our surroundings helps shift our focus to one of curiosity and wonder. It offers us a distraction that is actually healthy and helps us grow in all areas of our life. Keep in mind, those little sprouts that emerge from the Earth also benefit from our attention. Who does not grow stronger when they are given attention and feel seen? The natural world is an extension of us as we are an extension of it. We’re all interconnected . . . humans and nonhumans. This is where the Lakota phrase, “Aho, Mitayuke Oyasin “fits”, it means, “I acknowledge, All My Relations!
“When you see a new trail, or a footprint you do not know,
follow it to the point of knowing, - Uncheehah, The Grandmother of Ohiyea
The 13 Clan Mothers:
The Full Moon on March 28 brings in the energy of, Looks Far Woman. She heralds in a time to “See the Truth” in all colors. How timely is that? Bear with me as I recall the first song I learned as a child, Feel free to let your heart sing-a-long:
“Jesus Loves the Little Children, all the children of the world. Red and yellow, black and white, they are precious in his sight, Jesus loves the Little children of the world!”
This Clan Mother offers us a time to travel beyond this physical dimension and take a look at the “Crack between the universe,” We can only do that when our heart is open and willing to see things beyond our limited physical existence. She teaches us how pain is a teacher that offers many blessings and gifts.
Click on the tab, 13 Original Clan Mothers on our webpage and read about this beautiful teacher. Rather than rely on what others say is Truth, buy the book and each Full Moon read the corresponding Clan Mother. I promise you will glean an understanding of your personal Truth. Your heart and everything around you will change!
***Check out the other offerings and information on our website while you are there. We would love to hear any stories or words you would like to share. And, remember to sign up for the newsletter and blog in order to receive them directly in your email!
“The natural order of life springs forth before the divine whispers of love are even heard.”
The old woman, Head to Heart Talks: Rediscovering Your Authentic Self.
“When the power of Love overcomes the Love of power, the world will know peace,” Jimmy Hendrix
Vicky Kelm Williams
I find people absolutely fascinating!