Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Walking Gently Upon the Earth

As the end of one year starts to come to a close and the new one, filled with all its wonder and possibilities, makes its presence felt, the above saying comes to mind.  This old year seems to have been one with its share of turbulence (on all levels) but in the greater scheme of things, has it been more turbulent than previous years?  All I know is that life seems to  be a roller coaster with its ups and downs, twists and turns with the odd curve ball thrown in just to make sure we are still alive and whether or not we have been paying attention. Sometimes, and whilst it may be difficult to realise in this world of instant gratification and the Ego, experiences we are exposed to are not always about our own selves - at times, we may only be a catalyst or even a bystander who has gotten in the way.  When such experiences occur how certain are we that the experience is directly aimed at us?

As the sun turns the calendar year, the only thing that I seem to be sure of is the increasing pull to focus on my own spiritual practice. After dedicating years (possibly even a decade, if not more) on focusing primarily on the teaching of others (not to mention adjusting to the mixed result received),  this pull back to focus on my own practice is almost a deep soul desire to go within in order to develop a deeper connection with the world that is around me.
In 1851 Chief Seattle (a Dkhw'Duw'Absh (Duwamish) chief) reported have said:
"You must teach your children that the ground beneath their feet is the ashes of our grandfathers.  So that they will respect the land, tell your children that the earth is rich with the lives of our kin.  Teach your children that we have taught our children that the earth is our mother.  Whatever befalls the earth befalls the sons of earth...  This we know, the earth does belong to man: man belongs to the earth.
This we know.  All things are connected..."
In this modern age of commercialism, our dependence on energy (often largely produced by fossil fuels) steadily increasing, our connection with our Mother, the earth, barely seems to be given a thought.  In fact, it still tends to come off second best in the "economy v environment" stakes.
As the old year is coming to a close and a new year is dawning, now is a perfect opportunity to remind ourselves that when we walk (or travel) anywhere, there is more happening that us just moving from point A to point B.  What we are walking or travelling over is an extremely sacred place, our Mother, and somewhere even the "ashes of our grandfathers".  As such, it would not hurt us to remember that the earth is indeed sacred and with each step that we take, we are walking on our Mother, the one who nourishes and protects us, who sustains us and all other creatures that make up this wonderful planet we co-inhabit.
Within Buddhist practice, there is an active walking meditation in that each step that is made is done so in mindfulness and with purpose and intent, bringing us back to the here and now, not the past (the "if only") nor the future (the "what if").  Taking the time to slow down, the take "time out" and to simply be is a perfect way to conclude one year and commence the next - especially if we often spend the rest of our time running.  Enabling and allowing our self to become grounded in the earth is to feel its solidity with each step and know that we are right where we are supposed to be.  And with this groundedness, clarity is more easily to be achieved.
In this crazy, high tech world, many of us are simply searching for the ability to find our True Self.  We have lost sight and connection of it for it is the very earth that we walk and drive upon, that is under our feet and the concrete of our cities.  Over this new year, take a breath and make that mindful step upon Mother Earth - and as you do, you will be returning home.
Walking Meditation Poem
I take refuge in Mother Earth.
Every breath, every step
manifests our love.
Every breath brings happiness.
Every step brings happiness.
I see the whole cosmos in the earth.

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"Dancing the Sacred Wheel" now available again

"Dancing the Sacred Wheel" now available again
The second edition of "Dancing the Sacred Wheel: A Journey through the Southern Sabbats" is now available through or direct from the author (Australian customers only) for an autographed copy.

Great Goddess Isis

Great Goddess Isis

Exhortation of Isis

You are She in the dust of whose feet is the hosts of Heaven,
Whose body encircles the Universe,
Who turns the Earth in its orb,
Who gives light to the Sun,
Who rules the World.

You tread death underfoot.
To Thee, the stars are responsive,
To Thee the seasons turn and the Gods rejoice
And the elements are in subjugation.

You are She that is the natural Mother of all things,
Mistress and governor of all elements,
The initial progeny of worlds,
Chief of Divine powers,
Queen of Heaven,
Principle of all the Gods celestial and the light of Goddesses.

At Your will are disposed the planets of the air,
The wholesome winds of the seas
And the silences of the unseen world.