365 Days of Prayer – Day 118 – Stay Home

One of the mandates for the Corona virus is to stay home to help contain the spread within the capacity of the hospitals and health help centers to care for its victims. Governor Cuomo was on the TV exclaiming over people who were still frequenting beaches and coming into close social contact with each other, and specifically asked us to stay home so that we can continue to meet this emergency.

So please, if you happen to see this blog, stay home and keep yourself and us healthy! Thank you!

Creator, today I pray for those on the front of this disease. Keep them healthy, keep them rested, and let this disease burn itself out quickly. Let us honor the caring these individuals do to help those on the brink of death heal. Amen.

365 Days of Prayer – Day 117 – Fire Tending

We have been adapting to the mandate for social distancing for a couple of weeks now. Our normal way of life has ground to a halt, and we are left with opportunity to catch up with our inner life, if that is what we choose to do. I choose a prayer life as to neglect this is, for me, the certain path to worry and anxiety over which I can do – NOT MUCH!

A visit to the store last payday revealed the shelves still bare of paper goods, but people were being much more sensible and buying out the food too. I made certain to thank the workers in the grocery store, whom I usually take for granted, for being on the line. They are at risk as are our hospital personnel and they are keeping life running, as are the truck and transportation drivers. Some local school bus drivers have been asked to drive food to hungry children. You are awesome! That what we take for granted can become a hero’s journey, just to get up and go to work during this time of fear.

I want to draw attention to a special fire tending ceremony that will be ongoing until -I believe- April 12, for those who might want to participate. Renee Baribeau, the Practical Shaman, has asked her Winter Solstice Fire Tenders (all you need is a candle and an altar, friends) to join again in coming together to direct our intentions to burn this COVID-19 situation through more quickly. You can sign up here. Renee also has a Spring Wind Class coming up, which may be just the thing to go deeply within during these troubled times. I have taken several classes with Renee, and have come out deeper in soul and more directed in purpose.

Creator, as these times keep us isolated from one another, I want to thank you for what a great job my state New York and Governor Cuomo are ding to stay on top of the rapidly changing scenarios of this virus. For those who are not taking this seriously, bring them to a change of heart. Let us remember we are a collective and can do much to help the situation just by staying home! Amen

 

365 Days of Prayer – Day 116

This week we all got hit by a new worry – CORVID-19. On pay day I took myself to the store and was surprised to see all the toilet paper shelves empty. It seems as if with the concern about the virus, people’s biggest worry is wiping their ass.

Some of us can afford to isolate ourselves while we feel out the unknown consequences of this virus. Some of us cannot afford to isolate ourselves. So we go on, perhaps being more careful than previously about washing our hands and keeping our environments clean. And sticking with learning the facts of the illness.

A friend was telling me a story about how she had to relate to someone that it is not China’s fault about the virus, but that the virus is a random condition of nature that leapt from one species to another. It happens. Shit happens too. Nobody is at fault, but it did bring to mind the question of “What superstition will the religious wrong bring to blame the situation on?” They can’t blame gays like they do with AIDS, because anybody can catch this disease. But I heard Trump on TV blaming China today, so maybe they will run with that. Then the man avoided serious questions by talking for endless minutes about not shaking hands. Really? This is the leader of the free world? Funniest bumper sticker I spied about the election was “Put an adult in the White House 2020.”

The conditions of life are what they are. Maybe everything that seems “normal” has to be stood on its head so that humanity can learn to face life with more balance. For many of us, this means a hard look at how we need to slow down, or how do we support ourselves when the anticipated means have come to a halt, or what happens when a loved one drops ill? It may not even be the Corona virus at all, but something else, a heart condition, cancer. The events of the past few days just beg the hard questions.

When I face the hard questions, I have to pray. Prayer is my saving grace.

Creator, life is uncertain. I’ve always known that, but with these events I am really feeling that too. I choose to put love above fear. I choose to put faith above fear, and yet sometimes the fear happens. You have taught me to step into the fear, to face it down. When fear comes upon me, be strong with me. Don’t leave me alone. Thank you. Amen.

365 Days of Prayer – Day 114 – Yggdrasil

Yggdrasil is the Norse Tree of Worlds. When I first came to this path, it was to answer a call to the Norns. Soon, however, other gods and goddesses began dropping in. I met Hela, Freyr, Freya, and then Heimdall came and did something very interesting. He dove down my universal energy core with a huge laugh, exclaimed, “How droll!” and I felt the worlds of the tree merge with my energy body. Unverified Personal Gnosis (UPG) has often been a very interesting experience for me. Yggdrasil remains a huge topic. I recently gave a talk on the Tree and the Chakras, and people in the class had some very interesting experiences of their own.

What I love about the Tree is that it holds awareness while those of us who are not rooted, but in constant motion, go about our business in the world. But every so often, to take a breather, to go visit Yggdrasil is to have an otherworldly experience.

Yggdrasi, beloved of trees, Odin’s steed, thank you for holding the space of awareness in the Nine Worlds.

365 Days of Prayer – Day 113 – Waking Up

Today is a day demanding patience. Two days ago my sciatica went out, but nowhere nearly as painfully as one year ago when I missed two weeks of work that I could not afford to miss. A year of exercises designed to minimize pain have done their job. So that incident alone reminds me to have patience with myself. I can no longer quite rely on the strength of my youth, but I can be intelligent about taking care of this aging body.

Today I had the last ski charter of the year. Getting down to work to get the bus gave me another opportunity to remember patience as the car I was stuck behind was in no hurry. Fortunately, I had the mindset this morning because of the sciatica.

Incidents and situations that I don’t plan on, are great for helping me to “wake up,” step out of ego for a little while, discern the events going on around me. Lately I am getting the message from Spirit that those of us who are “waking up” to the light of the heavens (term borrowed from my friend John Naughton’s books on the Book of Revelation) are being asked to hold space for those who aren’t quite there yet. I’m willing to do this, when I remember that I too, was once lost in my own darkness. So it is good that I have sciatica. It is good that events conspire to slow me down, to pace, to think, and to be aware that all is intrinsically good, that it is often my own judgments that color things bad.

Creator, thank you for today and the events that have made me slow down in the sunshine and cold of the day. Thank you for the joy of the skiers and of my dog as I took her hiking at my snail’s paced walk. Thank you simply for the reminder to just BE.

365 Days of Prayer – Day 111

White people are recovering the roots of their shamanic practices. I am of Scandinavian ancestry practicing the Runes and spirit-led teachings of the old gods, who are very happy to teach and inform about the lore of Yggdrasil and the Nine Worlds.

I value authors who still remember things that my ancestors had lost, including the perception of the “Spirit-Who-Dwells-In-All-Things.”

Thunder Wizard Michael William Denney has shown that an Indo-European Medicine Wheel is very like the Native American Medicine Wheel. I hold gratitude for the words of Lakota Natives Nicholas Black Elk and Frank Fools Crow, who cared enough about what is holy to share their knowledge with white people who could listen, write down what was said, and so preserve the teachings that resonate respectfully within me.

I do not “borrow” and call something my own when it is not. I am simply a human being who wishes to practice and share methods that bring all peoples into greater harmony with Mother Earth, the Four Directions, and Nature through spiritual being practices.

Creator Gods and Goddesses, I wish to pray for all people today that the human collective might recognize the sanctity of all life and thereby learn to live in unity with one another, not through “sameness” but through the recognition that diversity is part of the All.

365 Days of Prayer – Day 110

Something happened to remind me to remind people how important it is to pray when there is need to take a life. This could be for any reason: plants I am gathering for medicinals or food; a farm animal I have raised for food; or a prayer for the hunters to bring in the game food.

I have shared stories recently of Hem, my tree friend. In his grove stands an aged tree who had been a sapling two hundred years ago when people clear cut the Hemlocks of this valley for the tanning industry. This tree was angry and mornings Alan and I could feel under attack from its projections of fear.

When I visit Hem, we experience much joy in each others’ presence. This elder tree would watch, and project its resentment. It clearly did not trust humans. But I would talk to it. I would ask it not to try to poison my relationship with Hem, because I am not like those people who clear cut the trees of its memory. And I asked it to forgive me so that I could enjoy Hem. This tree was not budging in its opinions or its suspicion. Yet something changed.

Yesterday morning I felt fearful, so I consciously stepped into the fear as my Wind Clan friend Brigid Hopkins suggested I do when my repressed emotions present themselves for healing. I stepped into the fear, and deliberately intensified the emotion. As I did this, the fear faded, and behind my eyes I was no longer Susan, but the tree I am telling the story about.  I was so afraid of the loggers daily coming closer and closer to where I was planted, and feeling keenly the deaths of my people, some dying after lives as long as six hundred to one thousand years, their lives abruptly ended without prayer, without ceremony, without permission.

Her story was heartbreaking.

I brought prayer. I brought ceremony. I called upon the help of my tutelary spirits for something I could not do on my own. This venerable tree has carried her fear for over two hundred years, the tree version of PTSD. With the help of the tutelary spirits, we created sacred space for her healing and her peace of mind.

If these loggers had been conscious of the spiritual beingness of these trees , would they have been so wasteful, or so careless of the value of their lives?

Long ago I read of a Native American practice of praying to the spirit of the being whose life was being sought to meet the tribe’s need to survive. Offerings were made and prayers were said. The spirit of the being was assured that no part of it would be wasted. Every part would be used. And eventually the humans too would lay down their bodies to return to the natural world. All of this was consciously realized and accepted. The prayers made the connection to the spirit of the animal for the spirit of the people and the needs were met and gratitude given.

Here is a “fill in the blank” kind of prayer to ask for and give honor to the gifts of the Earth. Or maybe something else will move you to write your own ceremony. I pray that you will.

Holy Mother Earth, Sacred Father Sky, and all who live in-between. Today I have the need __________________ (fill in the blank by naming your need). I seek _______________ in order to ___________. (I seek medicinals in order to heal, or I seek the deer in order to have meat for the coming winter, or I thank this animal that I have raised for its life in providing me with meat). I know that my own time of dying will come, and at that time I will give my own life to sustain those who come after me. Amen.

365 Days of Prayer – Day 112

Today I am grateful for being broken.

I have been pushing hard at work -the daily job that sustains life- and at play -my writing and my learning from the tutelary spirits who are the old gods of the Norse Mythology. Keeping abreast on all these fronts wears me down physically. I had a recurrence of sciatica yesterday, but I have noticed that despite the pain, my joy remains intact. I can only surmise the reason for this is that I am more able to renew my spirit even when the daily grind and pain of body are present.

It is this that I am grateful for. I am also grateful for being broken every time my ego told me that I had to persevere because nobody else was doing their job -as I saw it- and each time that happened, someone else gave me of their strength until I could return to the fight. Finally, finally(!!!) I am able to see that living life is a reciprocal thing. The myth I told myself of being the strong, independent one who needs nobody is a lie. I take the walls of my heart down and see life as it is, and the generosity of others and how we all interact in the day to day grind is a very beautiful thing.

So! Creator! Life Guides! Guardian Angels! Beloved Ones! Thank you for the bottoming out moments when you stood by me -patiently, always so patiently- until I could see and accept the Love you offered in the process of this life journey! Thank you for the bottom of the well moments, when looking far, far down a dark tunnel, and the only light I could perceive at the end of things was prayer. Thank you for recovery times that allow me the grace of time to process the spiritual lessons! Thank you for all of these things. Thank you for health, which I had previously taken for granted. And most of all, thank you for the love of family and friends who make my life truly joyful. Amen-Aho! 

365 Days of Prayer – Day 109 New Gods and Old

Raised Christian, every sacred personage that was not Jesus was regarded as demonic. As I grew up, I chose to throw off this fear-based idea of the divine in favor of a love-based idea of the divine. I came to love the healing Jesus, the Rabbi who preached among the multitudes and lived in regular communion with the one he called Father.

When the Norse gods began coming to me, I learned that Odin too was called Father. He is Val-Fadher, All-Father, and Fimbul-tyr, Great-God, and he has many, many other heiti, or names. It was Odin who gave humanity the Breath of Life, or Ond. Don’t let the misleading teachings of the Christians fool you. “Spirit” is Latin for Breath. The Holy Spirit is not the sole property of Holy Mother Church. The Holy Spirit is found by many names throughout the cultures of the world. There are many gods, and many gods wear many faces.

I believe the gods love us, and help us on our path of spiritual evolution. In my experience, those divine beings whom some think of as devils or adversaries are here to challenge us into growing. Loki, for example, and his half dead, half alive daughter Hela, are those who push us into seeing our own self-deception and our own shadows, so that we might work through these things into the full clarity of our own being.

Please don’t think I am sugarcoating these things. Evil is very real on a larger scale than human beings can be aware of, and humans themselves perpetuate evil out of their own fear. But this is not the topic I wish to pursue today.

Suffice it to say that in my choice to pursue this path I am on, I worked very hard to develop a solid spiritual foundation so that I would not be misled or deceived by an angel of darkness posing as an angel of light. One needs a strong ego and absolute trust in one’s guiding spirits, and one of the very best places to begin is developing one’s relationship with one’s Life Guide, or Thought Adjustor.

You can meet this Being just before sleep or upon waking when your daylight mind is most clear from the pre-occupations of the day. State your intention to meet your Life Guide out loud to your Subconscious mind, and then stay alert for the process to happen. If it doesn’t happen the first time, don’t give up. This awareness (intuition) you are trying to develop is like an unused muscle. Have faith and keep trying.

Dear Gods, thank you for loving us and pushing us toward our highest good. Thank you for the obstacles and the struggles to overcome that cause us to turn toward you in our dark nights of the soul, and for the rejoicing as we emerge again into the mornings of the Spirit. The journey for many of us is long and difficult, but we are upheld by love of you and your love of us. Thank you.