"The creation of a thousand forests is in one acorn." -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Posts tagged ‘nature’

Knowledge is Power

Doing some cleaning while watching this. I keep finding myself stopping to sit down and really listen. What’s really impacting me is that the stories in this film begin around the time I was born. The stories from yesterday are the roots of the challenges of today. The branches of today are the leaves of tomorrow.

It’s been 50 plus years since my time in this story began and yet somehow the stories of today are still the same. We’re they also the same 50 years prior to me? Will they be the same for my children and grandchildren in 50 years?

I recognize some of the faces in these stories as part of my childhood watching them unfold on the evening news. The narrative that went with them then made me believe that I needed to fear these people. “Here’s what’s going on with these armed and violent thugs in other parts the country,. We are telling you about it because we want to scare you. But don’t worry! We have it all under control. Our government agencies are on full alert and are monitoring the situation. We won’t let them get you.” Seeing the same stories narrated by the voices behind them is quite a liberating experience!

What I’m grateful for is this age of information and the ability to connect to the world in my own way via the Internet. My life and my understanding is no longer controlled by what is chosen by others to be broadcast to me via the black box in the living room. Now, I get to choose my own programming. Now, I get the chance to find the real stories behind the narrative of what “they” want me to believe.

I think the power that the ability to choose awakens within me is the very reason why the powers-that-be want to limit what I can do and what I can know. We, the people, are empowered with knowledge and are connected across the world in seconds. In that connection we learn that we are not alone. Knowledge is power.

How will we use that power? What will we DO with it? Will we speak up or will we stand down? Will we put aside our differences and come together with one voice? Can we put aside our differences and unite peacefully to make a positive difference? I think we can and I think our indigenous brothers and sisters are showing us the way.

“They pick up me when I fall.”

Yesterday afternoon I experienced one of those precious moments of life that are so sweet, so heart-warming, so divine that it made me wish I could package it up in a pretty purple box and tie it up with a gold ribbon and a big bow so that I may open the gift again and again and again.

Jeff was feeding bees and putting mouse guards in the hives while I was in the garden gathering, bundling, collecting and preparing for winter. Our granddaughter Alexandria was back and forth between us, assisting, asking questions and just being her happy little 4-year-old self.

It had been sprinkling on and off all afternoon until a point came where it seemed like it was going to be more on than off. As I started packing my harvest into the truck I called to Alex to gather her things and come sit in the truck with me to wait for the rain to pass.

“I not wet Gairma!” she said, as she trotted off and disappeared behind the garden shed. (she calls me Gairma instead of Grandma – “Gair” sounds like “Hair”) As I was putting things away I noticed that she was purposefully going up and down the garden rows, stopping occasionally, and then continuing on.

We’ve had a few really cold nights so most of the garden has wilted, however Alex is rarely without a fistful of flowers of some sort and this day was no exception. We climbed into the truck to watch the rain. As we talked she opened her little hand and laid an assortment of flowers out on the console.

Her collection contained flowers of viola, anise hyssop, lavender, white snake root, stevia and borage. We talked about each of them in turn, noting the colors, the scents and the size of the flower petals. When we got to stevia we tasted the leaves. Her face lit up at the sweetness and she quickly asked for another. After talking about each flower and before moving on to the next she would declare it her favorite. “Viola is my favorite!” When we shared about anise hyssop before moving on to the lavender she said, “Anise hyssop is my favorite!” and so on through all of the flowers.

I observed, “You really love flowers don’t you?”

She nodded her head and said “Yes … they pick up me when I fall.” I think I may have held my breath at that moment, wanting to stop time right there in the divinity of what she had just said and how it made me feel. She started to explain “When I fall down … ” and she spread her hands down toward the floor “they pick up me” and she brought her hands back up and crossed her arms over her heart.

I love flowers. They pick up me when I fall. Alexandria Jordan Buckalew - Age 4I said, “So they make you feel better?”

“Yes” she said, nodding her head again. She selected a beautiful geranium blossom she had brought with her from Pop-pop’s house, brought it to her face and said, “They give me a kiss.” Her angelic little face glowing in refection of the pink-orange petals, she puckered her lips, closed her eyes and kissed the flower. “See?”

A Black Rabbit on a Blue Moon

Today marks a Full Blue Moon. A Blue Moon is the name for the second full moon in a given calendar month. We will not experience another blue moon until July 2015.  Blue Moon symbolizes a “rare opportunity” or a “chance of a life time”. We often hear the term “once in a blue moon” to define something that happens very infrequently.

A black rabbit has chosen to make a home, or at least a temporary safe haven, under our backyard shed. Shortly after Easter we had a note taped to our door regarding our neighbors losing a baby black rabbit. Black Rabbit Eating CloverWe didn’t see the rabbit until about mid-July, so it must be about 6 months old by now. It’s often feeding on the clover in the middle of the yard, and sometimes, there’s a smaller gold-colored rabbit with it. We decided that she’d been out wild long enough that maybe it would be better to leave her wild. I’m not sure how old rabbits have to be to make babies but she may have already mated with a wild rabbit, hence the smaller, gold-colored rabbit who is too timid to come fully into the yard.

She seems to disappear for a few days at a time. While she’s gone I wonder if she’s fallen prey to neighborhood cats or perhaps the red tail hawks who have been preying on another neighbors birds at the feeders. Just when I think she must have completed her circle of life, she shows up again, hopping around the back yard, munching on clover.

She doesn’t seem to mind the presence of the dogs. Angel is getting on in her years and it takes her a while to spot the rabbit. Once she does, she’s off and running with the beagle bray that screams “I found it! It’s here!” Magnus sees it, watches for a while and often leaves it alone. Sometimes he gives chase and the rabbit always makes it to cover, either under the shed or in the stuff piled under the garage roof. This has been a great opportunity to practice the “Off!” and “Leave it!” commands with Magnus. He’s done pretty good with it, stopping mid-stride and turning back to me more than half the time. I’ve got to get a bit better at keeping my eye on him. He seems to wait until I’m distracted before making a play for the rabbit.

This morning as I was watching the rabbit hop around the yard I wondered … if everything is energy then what might the energy of a black rabbit mean to me? Perhaps there is a Universal message for me being delivered by the rabbit. I could dismiss the rabbit and its presence in my life as “one of those things” but what if I choose to honor the rabbit and whatever energetic message it might bring?

Blue Moon - Image Credit NASAWhat do I know about rabbits? I know they are a symbol of fertility. They breed frequently and can produce a new litter of 3 to 6 babies every 28 days. 28 days is connected to the lunar cycle, so perhaps there is a connection to the power 28 day creative cycles in my own life.

Rabbits are generally associated with spring time, a time of renewal and new birth. There is a pagan goddess, Eostre, who symbolizes renewal and fertility and who was celebrated with a festival at the spring equinox. Her name is translated as “radiant dawn” which was probably exactly what spring felt like to those who had just been through a long, hard winter.

Fertility, at this point in my life, is probably not going to be about babies yet it could be about other seeds that I’ve planted. They are kind of like babies to me. Seeds of thought, seeds of intention, seeds of hope, seeds of inspiration, flower and vegetable seeds … It could also represent an abundance that comes in quick succession with little time to wait in between.

Rabbits hop and leap and may symbolize the ability to hop or jump over obstacles in life. They are fast runners over short distances. When running from dogs they will make a wide circle away from their starting point but will return back to it. Knowing the rabbit will return to where it started, the hunter waits there while the dogs chase the rabbit around it’s loop.

The rabbit visiting my yard is black, which symbolizes all color. All color could symbolize accepting all things, all people, all situations. We are all one. Black can also represent the shadow side of life or fears that are required to be worked through. Perhaps the rabbit is encouraging me to face my own fears with compassion and a gentle acceptance of my Self.

Rabbits eat greens and this one really seems to love the clover in our yard. I’ve been transitioning my diet into eating “rabbit food” as well as studying about how wild plants, such as clover, are also medicine. Perhaps the rabbit is encouraging and affirming my choices to “eat my greens” and to learn about wise woman medicine wisdom.

Rabbits are able to freeze as still as a statue while they assess perceived danger. I have noticed that after the threat of a braying beagle is removed the rabbit in my yard comes back out of hiding almost immediately and then ventures, pretty surprisingly, closer to me than she had been before. The message in that could be related to how I respond to fear. To not allow fear to keep me in hiding. That yes, if there is a reason to run, by all means run, however don’t stay hidden or frozen when the threat is gone, thereby missing opportunities for feasting on yummy green clover. And really, for me, how much is there to really fear? Really? When I think about it, most threats are more in my mind than they are in my everyday life.

Perhaps a black rabbit on a blue moon symbolizes that I am being given a rare opportunity at creation or rebirth. I’m being encouraged to recognize 28 day cycles of creation, to nurture myself with fresh, green food,  to face my fears with gentle compassion and to learn to leap over obstacles in my life.  Perhaps honoring the message of the rabbit can assist to attract the abundance of spring time energy into my life no matter what time of year it is.

Dreams Awake: Out of the blur and into the light

The other day, for some reason, I began referring to my life as my dream.  I had been meditating in the garden through which I saw a blank canvas, paint and brushes.  As color was loaded and brush strokes applied I began to see a clear picture of how I was actively painting my own reality in each and every moment.  This ‘mind movie’ was comprised of a series of mental pictures representing the thoughts constantly streaming through my head. I saw symbols of my thoughts from the distant past, recent past and the here and now. It appeared and felt to me as though I was dreaming yet I was wide awake.

Step by StepAfter opening my eyes the dreamy state continued. I was observing Jeff cutting a section of PVC pipe to make holders for the bamboo sticks in the garden shed. As he cut and mounted the pipe on the wall I became aware that his actions had created a sort of brush stroke on the painting of my dream that I simply would not have made.  While what he was doing made perfect sense and was a valuable addition, I had not considered it. My own vision somehow took certain things for granted and in my mental painting of my dream they were slightly out of focus or part of the background.

In Jeff’s painting however, these sections of pipe had purpose. He felt it important enough to load the brush and then apply the stroke with a specific goal in mind. The results are a beautiful and functional order in the chaos. No more bamboo sticks falling all over each other and getting in the way. Need a bamboo stick? Here they are all neatly bundled and waiting to be chosen for a task. It was a place where the addition of a small ‘tool’ created certainty. It struck me how this one seemingly silly little thing was an example of how attention to detail in the right area can result in creating an ease or a natural flow as we move through our garden shed.

Watching this happen seemed to be in slow motion.  I realized how fortunate I am to be sharing and living the experience of my dream with someone like Jeff who is living the experience of his dream. He didn’t ask me for ‘permission’ to load his brush with that particular color. He didn’t consult with me before he made the stroke, he just did it. It was part of HIS dream to do so.

In choosing to share my dream space with him there is a trust that is developed between us. I trust him to go along following the motions of his dream and he trusts me taking action in the motions of mine. What’s happening in the building of this trust is absolutely beautiful. As I saw these silly little PVC pipes being attached to the wall they began to take on so much significance that I realized they weren’t silly at all.

Inspired by the two brush strokes, my mind began rearranging some of the contents of the shed to complement the new additions. What was, fifteen minutes ago, a blur on the canvas suddenly began to have detail defined. What were previously large clouds of light and shadow now began to take on more definition.

I was inspired to load color of my own and apply a few more brush strokes to continue in the shed after Jeff moved on. To define in more detail, a place where for a moment in time our dreams merged.; a place where one plus one equals three. By each of us painting on our own canvas yet sharing a third, separate canvas at the same time, we created something that remains behind to enhance the space that supports us as we travel through it performing the tasks of our callings.

What dreams will you paint on your canvas today? Who will you share them with?

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