365 Days of Prayer – Day 136 – Everything is Spirit

Shifting paradigms, how we use language, and the fact that certain words do not have the same image to different people – so how do we communicate?

Spirit and Soul are not the same, but they are related. Close relatives. Kissing cousins. Spirit is a work taken from the Latin Spiritus meaning Breath. According to Renee Baribeau (Winds of Spirit) Creation stories from around the world contain a Creator god who is also a wind god who imparts the divine breath of life to human beings. In the Teutonic mythology this Creator God was Odin who imparted breath to two logs, and his brothers Vili and Ve, imparted Will and Blooming Hue.

Soul, has its root in the word Sol,  meaning Sun. The Sun in the Northern tribes was female. The Moon to the Northern tribes was male, named Mani. The male takes his reflection from the female who gives birth to life.

Spirit and Soul, breath and will, the breath related to the heart chakra whose element is air, and soul related to the solar plexus chakra whose element is fire. Fire and Air, two elements in the body, unite in the throat chakra to give creative expression. This is the “rising up” from the creative of the Subconscious – womb energy – into manifestation on the earthly plane.

Just sharing.

Creator, thank you for a day of harmony and sunshine.

365 Days of Prayer – Day 130 Source – Checked Growth

Hellebore blooming

I had the thought this morning that we are all plugged into the divine. It’s just that some people have forgotten they are connected. Other people know they are connected but still believe in the separation that their way and only their way is the right way. Still other people have chosen to disbelieve in any divine at all, believing that this life is all we’ve got.

What if? What if we are all plugged into the same divine socket? What if we all have the experience to stop our rigorous daily activities and sort it all out? What if?

I have been deeply buried in the garden lately and the life of plants. I have started seeds and nurtured sprouts tenderly transplanting them into bigger containers for the expansion of their roots. I have gone out to the garden which lay fallow last year and yanked other plants -long established perennials- out by their roots. What I observe in my periods of creation and destruction is how closely interactive members of different species are. The intertwining roots of the grasses hold soil in place that the deep tap roots of others descend through to call up the waters. Trees provide needed shade to some and cut off the beneficial sunlight to others. Each plant being has its place in the natural cycle and different species chemical output or waste is what another needs to live.

Aren’t people better when we live like the plants? I like the variety of colors and races and those who feel and those who think and those who explain clearly with words and others communicate with a paintbrush, dance, or poetry. We brush up against one another in life, hardly knowing where each of us puts our taproots down -at work, or at home, or in country of origin- but we all take away a little something, a root, a cord, a kind of influence that makes life a bit richer for all of us.

Plants cry out, so to save them pain, I explained that it was only in the garden spaces that I was ending life for their kind. Their bodies were lovingly placed upon my compost pile to break down for fertilizing other plantings later. Their species mates stand tall around my fenced in garden, flowering heads standing silent vigil to those who passed so that the food I am raising for my family’s sustenance during the coming winter might have its own sustenance for this summer of its life.

What if we all have the experience to stop our rigorous daily activities and sort it all out? Oh! That’s right, we have. The COVID-19 pandemic has put a sudden stop to activities in the world. What will we emerge with?

During my garden musings, I have had to destroy life in order to make room for another kind of life. I would not have time to garden if it were not for this pandemic, but I never asked that such a nasty virus would wipe out human life at such a destructive level as it has. This virus engages my compassion even as it engages my sense of the expedient. Both realisms are necessary. Continuous growth is a fallacy, as at some point unchecked growth becomes a cancer. The forces of breakdown and decay are as necessary to life as growth, because without balance we lack those things needful to the spirit. We need art, contemplation, reflection, beauty, time for the work of our hands, because all of these things feed our souls.

The garden is a quiet place where I can find equanimity amidst the song of birds and the quiet hum of bees. Bees! I am glad to see bees and the resurgence of nature’s life even as human industry has had to slow down.

Creator, I find only two words adequate for today’s blessings. Thank you!

365 Days of Prayer – Day 79 The Chakras – Day 9 The Call to Rise Up: Solar

Today is an absolutely beautiful day after a night full of rain. I took a ski charter to Hunter Mountain, and although their skiing will be slushy, their day will be sunny and bright. The Sun awakens us and makes us feel good.

My Gurdjieff teacher Donald Petacchi used to have an expression he got from his Native American friends, “May the Sun always rise in your heart.” He knew how to say it in sign language too.

His point was this: The Solar Plexus is a nerve braid just around the inverted “V” shape between our ribs. This area is where our formatory learning is shared: not the higher functioning brain (neo-cortex), but the first fundamental things that form our personality from ages 0-7. These things include beliefs, how to conduct the self socially, how to interact with other people notably our primary caregivers, how I see myself (self worthiness) and how I project this image out into the world. This is not an area of reason, but of associated groupings of memories, beliefs born of my response to an incident, superstitions of what works to win my way, and stuff like that. The Solar Plexus is the chakra of Will empowered by the desires and emotions of the Sacral chakra. Solar, Sol, and Soul all share the same root word that is another name for the Sun.

Between the Sacral and Solar chakras there are twinned aspects to process impressions that are reflected in the head brain in the form of the left and right brain. These twinned aspects of the mind are feeling and thought, emotion and intellect, intuition and reason.

Don’s teaching about the Solar Plexus being the formatory center, or area of first thought, is important, because when our personalities are formed as children, we have not attained the stage of maturity to sort out, or to reason with the impressions we receive. I think of the formatory center as being the place from which I am “programmed.” The subconscious holds on to every perception we receive, and there is a lot buried there, from which flow our dreams and patterns of reacting to life. This is important to self awareness, I believe, because from the subconscious arises material that our waking consciousness cannot encompass.

In Wheels of Light, author Rosalynn L. Bruyere notes that it is at this chakra that many people stop the flow of energy moving into the Heart Chakra. This blockage of energy moving upward causes the energy instead to move sideways to the left and get stuck in the area of the pancreas. Is it surprising that America has an epidemic of diabetes and heart disease?

When we instead allow the energy to move upward, the vortex of our Heart chakra can purify painful feelings and toxic emotions through the contact it holds with our spirit. Like the Sun calls seeds to life out of the fertile ground, and the rain that falls upon those seeds nutures their arising and well being, is the call upward from our Root through our Sacral toward the Solar and even beyond, to the higher love of the Heart.

Dear Higher Self, like the Sun you call us to awaken and arise toward the work we came here to do. Root in me, make room in the Sacred places, let my energy respond to the Sun in me, and even beyond, to the Heart where my joy lives. Let me honor my love and my joy today.

365 Days of Prayer – Day 67 Grace filled soul

Garden time

“When I want something done right, I have to do it my self!”

Well, yes, if this particular project is my own idea, and will be subject to my own brand of perfectionism, then yes. If I want something done right, I had better look to it myself.

Still sometimes life requires cooperation. And the need for cooperation can be downright funny – in hindsight. Especially when there are two of us working together and each of us likes to be right! I will probably never forget setting up the garden with my second husband. I learned to keep my mouth shut until he had tried everything and then calmly state what I thought might work. Our arguments did more than most other efforts did to teach me to hold my silence and to allow another person a process. At other times I needed him to let me have my process, so it was a two-way street. The reward was not whether he was right or I was right. The reward was the beautiful food we grew and had to eat well into the winter.

Creator, thank you for allowing us our process. Whether I am right or wrong. I need this time of discovery and error, this time of making mistakes and rectifying them in order to grow a more grace-filled soul. Thank you.