June 01, 2018
Transitions, Endings and New Beginnings
We start with dreams. We begin a relationship or a new job with a vision of all kinds of possibilities, and we push forward, putting things into place so they can happen. We invest great time and resources, and at times we are asked to overcome great feats. As much as we put our hearts and souls into it, sometimes, however, a dream may end. It just dies on the vine, never coming to full maturity.
When we put all of our eggs in one basket, as one does when really wanting something, and that dream evaporates, how do we pick up and move on: the marriage that has died, that career path that has evaporated, or maybe you are having to pack move towns? After so much time and identity invested, we can lose our sense of self. Who we were dims into a flicker, and we fear we will fade out all together. Transitions are that space between the death of the old, and the birth of the new. In the throws of it one can feel dark and hopeless, and at the doorway of depression. The losses are palpable and can leave a bitter taste in our mouths, especially when the new path is not yet visible. We may even feel let down by God him/herself. Floating in an undefined space, with no direction at all, can be one of the most agonizing, and challenging of times.
August 01, 2016
The Unforgiven: Beyond Crimes and Punishment
We are often bound to people we do not like, trust or respect through our grudges, fears and hatred. These are people who have hurt, rejected or abandoned us. Some crimes are personal, others hit at the hearts of our race, gender or sexuality. Some have done unthinkable things, others have just offended us. In any case we hold court in our minds and then execute sentences that keep them forever accountable.
We know we are supposed to forgive and move on but we feel that excuses their behavior. If we stop holding our grudge, who will they answer to? Someone has to remember. If we let them off the hook how will we know they have paid for their transgressions? We punish them so we know someone has, because we fear they will do it again. This takes great energy, however, even when it is simply a dialogue in our minds.
May 01, 2014
Dying With Grace and Awareness
In our Western culture we have forgotten how to die. We are more focused on youthfulness and prolonging our lives. Death is something we fear and quietly sweep into the shadows. Rather than honoring our elders for their wisdom and strengths, we shuffle them off into “assisted care” facilities at the end of their days. We pay large amounts of money to keep them alive instead of listening to their stories and facilitating their transitions so they can leave with grace and dignity.
In the shamanic traditions one of the main focuses of a high shaman’s training is to die consciously. She sees death as a transition only, as a journey between dimensions. She clears herself of the heavy energies binding her essential self to her body and practices Spirit Flight many times before she takes her final one. All of us can loosen our grips on the physical this way and we can all help someone who is dying prepare for death similarly.