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A Monday meander: Rituals

At the pump.

While we have much to learn from indigenous cultures about forms of rituals and how ritual works, we cannot simply adopt their rituals and settle them neatly onto our psyches. It is important that we listen deeply, once again, to the dreaming earth and craft rituals that are indigenous to us, that reflect our unique patterns of wounding and disconnection from the land. These rituals will have the potency to mend what has been torn, heal what has been neglected. This is one way that we may return to the land and offer our deepest amends to those we have harmed.

~ Francis Weller, The Wild Edge of Sorrow: Rituals of Renewal and the Sacred Work of Grief

At the core of this grief is our longing to belong. This longing is wired into us by necessity. It assures our safety and our ability to extend out into the world with confidence. This feeling of belonging is rooted in the village and, at times, in extended families. It was in this setting that we emerged as a species. It was in this setting that what we require to become fully human was established. Jean Liedloff writes, “the design of each individual was a reflection of the experience it expected to encounter.” We are designed to receive touch, to hear sounds and words entering our ears that soothe and comfort. We are shaped for closeness and for intimacy with our surroundings. Our profound feelings of lacking something are not reflection of personal failure, but the reflection of a society that has failed to offer us what we were designed to expect. Liedloff concludes, “what was once man’s confident expectations for suitable treatment and surroundings is now so frustrated that a person often thinks himself lucky if he is not actually homeless or in pain. But even as he is saying, ‘I am all right,’ there is in him a sense of loss, a longing for something he cannot name, a feeling of being off-center, of missing something. Asked point blank, he will seldom deny it.

~ Francis Weller, The Wild Edge of Sorrow: Rituals of Renewal and the Sacred Work of Grief

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A Monday meander: Rainy days and Mondays

Early this morning.

As I get older, I realize the thing I value the most is good-heartedness.

~ Alice Walker

Many of us sense in the time of this current pandemic a great opportunity: it is as if we have collectively been sent indoors to do our essential human homework, to hit the pause button on our hyper-accelerating lives and reflect on what is really of value. It is to get into our hearts; to discover that being human is a magnificent thing; that each human being is a uniquely formed stream of creativity so perfectly designed to flow into communal rivers of renewal and into a great tidal shift that moves us in the years ahead to declare, “Powered by love? Indeed the whole thing is powered by love: every forest, every lake, every creature, every human, every galaxy is powered by love—by a love as potent and creative as we allow it to be.”

~ James O’Dea

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Posted in Change, Climate Change, Covid-19, Earth, Exploring, Family, Fire, Friday Farrago, Garden, Gifts, Grandparenthood, Gratitude, Heartfulness, In these strange times, Life, Listening, Little Peanut, Mindfulness, Nature, Ohio, Photography, Play, Portals & Pathways, Quotes, Spirit, Summer, The Bogs, Walking & Wandering, Weather

A Friday update

The humidity is bringing us lovely light that paints the landscape.

… I couldn’t point to any enormous instantaneous change that has happened to me, but certainly over the last ten years, this notion—that I don’t really know everything and that I’ve got a lot to learn, rather than a lot to teach, and that there is a conversation I don’t know how to have, that I’d like to learn how to have—has been a constant for me, and it’s changed me subtly.

There’s still a lot I’d like to do and a lot I’d like to learn, a lot I’d like to know. I think that’s increasingly such an important task: just to learn how to listen, to relearn what we’ve forgotten. I don’t think there is any easy sort of ABC curriculum for it. There’s a lot of work you can do.

~ Paul Kingsnorth, The Myth of Progress, Emergence Magazine Podcast

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Posted in Air, Beginnings, Change, Covid-19, Earth, Exploring, Family, Fire, Gifts, Grandparenthood, Gratitude, Heartfulness, In these strange times, Life, Little Peanut, Little Wookie, Love, Mindfulness, Nature, Ohio, Photography, Play, Portals & Pathways, Postcards, Quotes, Spirit, Summer

Greetings from NE Ohio

 

Sunlight traversing the path.

In a flash of wonderment she saw firm, continuous ground under her feet, stretching from back then to right now and on and on as far as her eyes could take her.

~ Ann Brashares, The Second Summer of the Sisterhood

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Posted in Air, Change, Covid-19, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Faith, Fire, Garden, Gifts, Gratitude, Heartfulness, Hiking, Home, Hope, In these strange times, Life, Little Peanut, Little Wookie, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Play, Quotes, Spirit, Spring, Walking & Wandering, Water, Wonder

Irises in bloom

Iris and twirls.

This flower is sacred to all who worship and reverence the virgin goddess in any of her forms.  As a flower, it is associated with creativity and self-expression.  It is a flower which draws to us higher inspiration and psychic purity.  Iris was the Greek goddess of the rainbow who led souls to the Elysian Fields.  Alignment with the flower named for her awakens within the auric field a strong sense of peace and the hope for new birth, and thus as a messenger, it reminds us to maintain hope for a new birth and new peace will soon be at hand.

~ Ted Andrews, Nature Speak

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Posted in 40-Day Challenge, Air, Change, Critters, Earth, Eastern Shore, Exploring, Family, Fire, Gifts, Gratitude, Heartfulness, Home, Life, Little Peanut, Little Wookie, Love, Maryland, Mindfulness, Nature, Photography, Play, Quotes, Spirit, Spring, Walking & Wandering

Bunny rabbit

The rabbits are out in force, chasing each other, hopping over the turkeys, and playing with the younger deer.

… The rabbit is known for its ability to procreate, its fleetness, its ability to make great leaps and hops.  It moves primarily by hops and leaps, and individuals with this totem find that their endeavors do so as well.  All of these characteristics are significant for those with this totem.

… Although some associate fear with the rabbit, it has wonderful abilities for defense.  Those with this totem would do well to apply them to their own life.  Rabbits often create forms to use for hiding and resting.  To create a form, the rabbit scratches a shallow bowl into the earth or grass that is open in front and in back to enable it to escape if necessary.  Rabbit people should plan for possibilities.  If a rabbit has shown up, it may indicate a need to do some more planning or check those you have already set in motion.  You do not want to box yourself into a corner.  Rabbits have a knack for avoiding being seen.  They can freeze, holding perfectly still.  They know that movement can be detected from great distances by many predators.  If you are involved in competition — in work or in play — it will be important not to foreshadow your moves.

Rabbits are also clever at doubling back, making quick and rapid turns.  If they need to flee they can be extremely fast.  Learning to shift from freezing to great speed is something all with this totem should learn.  It will aid your success and enable you to take advantage of opportunities that may only present themselves for brief moments.

Rabbits are vegetarians.  Those with this totem need to examine the kinds of foods being consumed.  For the greatest health and healing, a vegetarian diet, even if only temporary, will strengthen and heal.

Rabbit can show you how to recognize the signs around you.  It can help you to attune to the lunar cycle and recognize the tides of movement within your life.  This in turn will enable you to become even more fertile in your life.

~ Ted Andrews, Animal Speak

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Season’s greetings

This is Tag, an Elf on the Shelf. This is where he ended up on Christmas Eve.

This is the pruning period, when life can look pretty drab; the dead branches of our old habits will be lying all around us and the new leaves will not yet have begun to grow.

But for all of us, if we keep at our pruning carefully, the spring is bound to come.

There will still be gardening to do, but when we see our new ways blossoming and the good fruit we have begun to bear for others, this pruning of self-will will be a source of lasting satisfaction.

~ Eknath Easwaran

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