Friday, 23 November 2012

On Human Capacity

Inside each of us there is an unimaginable capacity for goodness, 
to give without seeking reward, 
to listen without judgment, 
to love unconditionally.

Elisabeth Kubler-Ross 

Monday, 19 November 2012

I Have Learned

I Have Learned so much from God that I can no longer call myself  a Christian, a Hindu, a Muslim, a Buddhist, a Jew. 

Thursday, 8 November 2012

Living Process

"...there has been a revolution in how we perceive the body.  
What appears to be an object, 
a three dimensional anatomical structure, 
is actually a process, 
a constant flow of energy and information."

Deepak Chopra


He was making his way slowly towards the Elder during the ceremony. He wondered if the Elder would laugh at the cloth he brought, it wasn’t the usual print cloth he offered. He held the material tightly in hands and once again he examined it. The cloth was carefully cut from a well-worn brown sweater. This sweater contained so many memories. But the most recent, brought a batch of fresh tears. He sat down on one of the plastic lawn chairs that always adorned the sweat lodge grounds. It was here when she wore the sweater last.

When he felt he could speak without crying, he approached the Elder. He said, ‘there are no words that I could possibly say of the gratitude I feel for the healing ceremony you did for my partner. My sweet girl is at home resting comfortably right now and I have to come to pray for her.’ The Elder accepted the sweater cloth and the tobacco. She said, ‘oh yes, I remember her wearing this sweater many times. This was her favorite. I am wondering my boy if I can have a few words with you before we go into the lodge. The Grandfathers and Grandmothers aren’t quite ready so we have time.’ The man took a seat next to the Elder.

She looked at him with so much compassion; he quickly looked down at his feet fearing that he would be unable to control his tears. She reached out and put a hand on his shoulder for a minute; then she reached down to the bag that lay at her feet. She rooted through the contents and then found what she was looking for; in her hand she held an Apache teardrop. She offered to the man and he accepted. She said, ‘thank you for taking my offering; I want to share a teaching with you. You know my boy; you are a good man. I mean it. I have seen you with your partner. You are kind and gentle. I have could see your worry and sometimes even your frustration. I don’t think many see it, but I could, it appears ever so briefly in your eyes, or in the smile that at the times seems to have painted on. I imagine that never in your wildest dreams would you have thought that your partner would become sick. I imagine you thought that you two would be like other couples going about life with the usual worries, but not worries like this.’ The man nodded and brought his hand quickly up to his face, using his thumb and finger to wipe away the tears that were threatening to spill over. He held the stone in his other hand so tight, he felt like he was imprinting it into his palm.

The Elder continued, ‘you know as old as I am, I have witnessed many good people, like yourself; go through things like this. I have heard well-meaning people say different things like; we aren’t given what we can’t handle, there is a reason for everything, I know how you feel, or the worst in my opinion, be strong. I must be getting old because sometimes I think, sad things just happen in our life and there is no good reason in the world. I think about the time I lost my mother and people said these things to me, I would just nod because I knew they meant well and sometimes, they didn’t know what else to say. I think for some, it is about trying to explain grief, or they just were just trying to make me feel better. I know they have their reasons and like I said, they really do mean well and want to express their caring and that is beautiful and compassionate.

The thing is that they didn’t know was my mom was sick for about a year before she went left to the spirit world and I was a witness to her progression towards that side, I guess that I don’t need to tell you, but it is very difficult to see someone you love sick. I felt sad, tired, angry, depressed, frustrated and hopeless. Worst of all every self-defeating thought I ever had seemed to surface. Oh, don’t get me wrong; there were times of great joy, happiness, inspiration, fulfillment, and so much love.

I guess that is the way of loss or when we grieve our old way of life; we go through so many feelings. And, people don’t know what to say, but like I said, they mean well. I suspect that it is similar for you. I want you to know that whenever you need to talk, I am here. I want you to know, you can tell me how you feel without feeling guilty or think that I will judge you. I guess most of all, I would like you to consider about praying for yourself once and awhile. I am going to suggest something and it is totally up to you, I just want you think about it; perhaps, you might consider not praying for strength. I say this because you have plenty of strength. I can see that. What I want to say is that I know that while your partner is sick and could use all our prayers, I also know you are going through this as well and can use them.

It is ok to process your feelings, no matter what they are. For example, if you are mad, get good and mad, talk about it; shout it out, it is important, but where you feel safe to do so. I say this because I kept saying to myself, once my mother goes to the other side, I will process my feelings then. But by that time, whenever I became angry, I felt good and guilty about feeling angry. It took me years to come to a place where I could just feel comfortable thinking about my mom or even cry about losing her in a healthy way. You see, many of my tears were about guilt and not loss. I am not saying; your partner is anywhere near going to the other side, I seen this when I did her healing ceremony and the doctors say she far from it. However, I believe the more you honor your feelings in a safe manner, where you don’t feel guilty afterward, the more you can be there for both yourself, and your partner. I am asking you just to give this some thought, my boy. I just wanted to give you something to consider.’ He stood up and reached down and gave her a huge hug. He asked, ‘can I keep this Apache teardrop in my medicine pouch?’ She answered, ‘sure for as long as you need to, but when you are ready, offer it up to the river where it can be washed clean from the energy it had provided you.

Now, I think those Grandmothers and Grandfathers are ready for us. Let’s enter into the lodge. We will pray for your partner and I am going to pray for you, silently; mind you; because I want to honor your feelings and when and if you are ready, I hope, one day soon that you might pray for yourself. I just want to say one more thing, I love you my son. I am proud of you. You are good and worthy man and I am honored to know you.’ With that the Elder placed her hands on her knees, facing forward, with her fingers spread far apart, and she rose, she used her hands to support her. She turned to the man, winked and said, ‘oh my bones, they feel older than I am.’

The man had a great deal to think about and he was determined to give full weight to the words the Elder was kind enough to share with him. He thought; ‘in this lodge, I am going to follow through on what I came to do, and that is to pray for my partner.’ Later, inside the lodge, as he prayed for his partner, he couldn’t help but smile because he could feel the prayers being said by the Elder for his well being. He felt embraced by not only the lodge, but also nurtured by the love that surrounded him.


I am listening to a deeper way.
Suddenly all my ancestors are behind me.
Be still, they say.
Watch and listen.
You are the result of the love of thousands.

Linda Hogan, Chickasaw  
Artistic by Valter Patrial

Litany Against Fear

I must not fear. 
Fear is the mind-killer. 
Fear is the little-death that brings total obliteration. 
I will face my fear. 
I will permit it to pass over me and through me. 
And when it has gone past I will turn the inner eye to see its path. Where the fear has gone there will be nothing. 
Only I will remain.

Bene Gesserit Litany against fear from the literary classic Dune by Frank Herbert