I’ve written about love and compassion here quite a bit, so it’s to be expected that I would have to face my own fears and shadow self, and see my own doubts and then, to be honest with myself and you, share them along the way. Though my childhood in this life would not be called easy, I sense that I brought some darkness with me, a darkness that has shown itself as nagging doubts about my self-worth, my spiritual commitment and whether or not I am truly loved by God. In the past, the feeling has come as an overwhelming wave of self-hate. I’m writing about this because this blog is a part of my journey.
Years ago I made a necklace that came into being looking like a simple Native Indian work. It prompted me to pull a box off my bookshelf book called Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams and David Carson, which includes a wisdom-book and a smaller box of Medicine Cards, painted by Angela Werneke, of a variety of animals. Drawing the cards from the deck with a spiritual purpose, I am tapping into Native Indian philosophy and wisdom.
The authors of Medicine Cards explain,
“Our intention, as shamans and healers, is to begin a process for many people who have never understood their connection to Mother Earth and her creatures … [and] of what it means to walk in balance on the Earth Mother. Our dream animals have asked for our assistance in spreading the understanding that all life is sacred.
When calling on the power of an animal, you are asking to be drawn into complete harmony with the strength of that creature’s essence. Gaining understanding from these brothers and sisters of the animal kingdom is a healing process and must be approached with humility and intuitiveness.”
I had used this book before and looked through a bunch of files and I found my notes, dated April 24, 2001. That day, I found my nine Totem Animals (guides that remain the same for a lifetime); used the Pathway Spread to learn about life-lessons patterns; and the Moon Lodge Spread, to learn the state of my personal unconscious, to uncover the lies and self-deceptions I had been using to thwart my spiritual growth. I guess that explains why I didn’t pick up the book again until ten years later. Chicken wasn’t one of the totem animals, but, cluck-cluck, it applies here.
I looked inside the book and found another spread called the Medicine Wheel. ‘Medicine’ in the Native Indian way is defined in the book as:
“Anything that improves one’s connection to the Great Mystery and to all of life…Medicine is also anything that brings personal power, strength, and understanding. It is the constant living of life in a way that brings healing to the Earth Mother and all associates, family, friends, and fellow creatures…it is an all-encompassing ‘way of life,’ for it involves walking on the Earth Mother in perfect harmony with the Universe.”
Wow–walking on the Earth Mother in perfect harmony with the universe. How many of us walk in this manner, giving thanks to the Great Spirit for everything in our lives and to the animals and plants who give their lives to become our food? It is a worthwhile goal, one I hope is not impossible.
The Medicine Wheel spread is used to reflect on the personality and to see how we learn from ourselves, other people and animals. Sounded good to me. After shuffling, I drew five cards and placed them on a table in the four directions, East, South, West and North and one in the center, which is the Sacred Mountain Card. Each direction has its own meaning.
There are two messages for each card, one if the card is right-side up when you pull it out and one if the card is upside-down, which the authors refer to as ‘Contrary.’ My shadow-self doesn’t want to share the cards I drew, but my Higher Self does:
**The first card, East, represents where our spiritual strengths lie and the challenges to seeing clearly in the present situation.
EAST: Moose. Is about not needing approval, and experiencing the joy of a job well done, about the joy in giving encouragement but also in warning. Moose is about a new sense of self and accomplishment. Contrary Message: Ego can ruin a sense of accomplishment. It is about tooting my own horn and failing to be interested in others. It is a need to recognize that everyone is a teacher for everyone else, and there is a need to grow quiet for a while to let wisdom enter my heart.
**Second is South, with the animal guide helping our inner children learn what we need to nurture and to trust ourselves.
SOUTH: Blue Heron. Blue Heron indicates an unawareness of who I am and where I belong. Follow intuition and begin the journey of self-realization. Low self-worth and self-pity means I will never truly understand my true potential. A lack of courage in facing the critical enemy within. See my motives, actions, feelings, dreams, goals, strengths and weakness. Contrary Message: Too much self-reflection can lead to self-obsession. If criticizing self, watch out! It is imprudent to drown the sense of joy that accompanies the journey of self-discovery. Perfection leaves no room for being human. Our most valuable lessons are learned from our mistakes. Balance the desire to change with gentle discernment. Dive deep into feelings and emerge renewed, not judgmental, rigid, and flat, which breaks the spirit. Do not expect to find the many layers of truth and wholeness in one dive. Don’t hold my breath for enlightenment or let the collective feelings of humanity drown me.
**Third is West, showing the internal solution to present life challenges and what we need to reach our goals.
WEST: Dog. Serving others or humanity in some way. The guardian embodies the loving gentleness of the best friend with the protective energy regarding territory. Delve deeply into my sense of service to others. Have I forgotten that I owe allegiance to my personal truth? Have the opinions of others jaded my loyalty to a friend? Have I ignored someone who is trying to be my friend? Have I been loyal and true to my goals?
**Fourth is North, which integrates the other cards and is the key to walking in wisdom by connecting to our highest purpose and intentions.
NORTH: Antelope. Knowledgeable action. Symbolizes the antenna of the hair, which attaches us to the Great Mystery. Action is the key and the essence of living. Antelope medicine gives strength of mind and heart. Call on antelope when balled up. Antelope sends ingenious solutions. Antelope indicates a higher purpose and forces action for self, family, clan, nation and Mother Earth. It is time—do it now.
**Fifth is the card in the center of the spread; it shows how to see the present as a crossroads of spiritual and physical realities and how they have melded, to show whether or not we are in balance and what to do about it.
CENTER: Deer. Deer is the gentle spirit, filled with love and compassion for all. With love, deer moves the bullies away from the door to the Great Spirit. Creates safety. Contrary Message: Means I’m courting my fears by fighting the internal demons of negative ideas. Need to love myself enough to deeply feel my fears and let them go. The balance to power is the love and compassion of Deer, who teaches unconditional love, accessed from the heart space of the Great Spirit who loves us all.
I really love these cards. With them, for whatever the reasons, I can count on honest guidance from the Divine, even if it’s hard to face. This is a priceless gift and I give my gratitude to Jamie Sams and David Carson, their mentors and all of dear Mother Nature’s Creature-Teachers. Thank you, Friends.
Medicine Cards is a book of sincere and profound wisdom, for all who want to see the truth of our personalities and our spiritual natures; and to make more meaningful relationships with nature.
A Course In Miracles teaches that there are only two ways of seeing in this world. Through the eyes of Love which is God or through the eyes of the ego which is fear. What you call dark forces, I would call ego misperception. Since God is only Love and God is all there is, anything that is not of God cannot really exist. Yes, it looks and feels real and can be very distracting when we are experiencing it, but if we remember that it isn’t God and therefore is only a harmless illusion we can take our power back and choose to see this through God’s eyes. When we look at everything with God and lift up all fear and darkness to Him, He then can shine His light into the darkness and show us it is nothing.
Remember no matter how it looks, no matter how it feels, no matter how it manifests itself, in your body or in your life, IT IS NOT GOD. If it were God you would be peaceful and filled with love. God is only Love and God is all there is. And so when you call it names like a dark force, or when you see dark faces coming at you, you must believe that whatever this is, it cannot harm you and it cannot interfere with God’s Love that lights you from within. If you can, smile gently at the faces and ask silently, “How can I help you?” Then lift them up to God so He can make the correction from fear into Love. Since you are clearly a visually sensitive person, visualize light around the faces and then visualize them fade into the light and disappear. And then visualize something beautiful like a garden or a rainbow or whatever you find beautiful in this world, a snowy mountain top, a green park with children playing on the playground. You are a writer with a wonderful eye for beauty so choose your place or space and see that instead of the darkness.
The ego is simply a mistaken thought system that we made up to separate ourselves from God. It didn’t work, of course, because we do not have the power or the ability to separate ourselves from our Source, but we can certainly believe that we have. What you are experiencing right now is either your own ego energy trying to distract you or the ego energy of others or a combination of both. I always believe that the fear is mine and in that way I know I made it up and so I can let it go. It often gets so strong that I am tempted to think it is separate from me and outside of me, but I remind myself that there is nothing outside of my mind because I am God’s Creation and there is nothing outside of the Mind of God. Either way, you have the power to choose God in this and free yourself of this experience. GOD’s LOVE IS ALWAYS MORE POWERFUL THAN FEAR.
A Course In Miracles teaches that the only way to weaken ego’s hold on us is to look at it and calmly say, “Oh, there it is again. Fear is back. So what’s new?” and then surrender it. What I do after I remind myself that it isn’t real is to ask God to help me see this through His eyes. Then I can smile gently and let it go. Sometimes it hangs on for a while after I have surrendered it, but then it fades and disappears into love. Of course it will come back and I will have to repeat the process. We must understand that we have accumulated a lot of fear in this lifetime and in past lifetimes. We aren’t going to eliminate it without some work. But at least now we can recognize it as harmless and an illusion and choose God each time that fear arises.
When we are on a spiritual path, ego gets a bit more persistent. It understands that we are releasing our attachment to fear and that makes it more fearful. Without fear the ego cannot exist. It will try to keep our attention and the more we turn to God, the more it wants us to see it instead. But now we can see the ego’s persistence as a good thing, because every time fear arises we are given another opportunity to see what pushes our buttons and where our weaknesses lie. It is only when we are willing to look directly at the fear, understand it is nothing and then surrender it that we can ever be free of it.
Remember, there are only calls for love and extensions of love. A call for love is any brother or sister who is experiencing fear in any form. And if a brother or sister calls for love, it is our function to extend love and as we extend love to another so do we offer it to ourselves. As I offer these words to you, so am I choosing to see my fears another way as well. And thank you for reminding me of what God is teaching us every moment, we are here to be happy and peaceful and joyous and loving. We have no other purpose because that is how God created us. Together let us extend love to the faces and the fear you experience. We are the light of the world and twisted faces and dark forces cannot interfere with that. The laws of God transcend the laws of the world and the laws of dark forces. Now our Love has washed away all fear. God’s Light has shined away all dark forces.
Now, envision yourself as healthy and strong in mind and body. Feel what perfect health would be like and allow yourself to experience the joy of perfect health. Do this any time you think of it and be sure to do this at night before you fall asleep and again in the morning when you awaken.
REMEMBER: FEAR IS NOT REAL! ONLY GOD IS REAL! I CHOOSE GOD NOW AND IN ALL THINGS. And then simply be grateful. Let gratitude flow over you like syrup over pancakes, like sunshine over shadow, like crystal spring water over rocks, like Love from a healed heart.
A beautiful ceremony to say goodbye to the old year and bless the new one, from my friend, Kim P., of the blog, Afternoon Storm. Thanks, Kim!
Every year at our home we do a little pipe ceremony just before 12:00 on New Year’s Eve. Often it is just my hubby and I, but sometimes our two kids (who are 19 and 22 now) have joined in. I use my pipe to create sacred space and we light a candle. Then we do four rounds of prayers.
The first is to identify the “things” we want to let go of from the old year.
In the second round of prayers, we each speak the names of the new patterns, beliefs or relationships that we would like to bring into our lives.
With the third round, we say the names of people we know or love to whom we want to send loving energy.
With the fourth round, we say prayers for the planet. It feels like a really good way to end the year and welcome in the new year.
Prepare. Yes, prepare for the days ahead. Days of trials in fire and renewal of the Earth by waters rising.
Hard days, some might say, difficult days. All we will say is necessary days if Mankind is to continue on the path of evolution or evolvement into half human, half God.
Mans’ destiny from the beginning of time. Now, soon to be fulfilled in human time.
Man has chosen this although the ego will say not.
Man was once the ruler of ego and lived amongst all creatures both seen and unseen. Then a separation occurred and Man forgot what he truly was and why he had come into this existence known as being human.
Now, the time of remembrance draws near.
Man will once again recall what he really is and why he has chosen to incarnate into human form.
Balance will return again to Man. A balance you call between Heaven and Earth. A balance we just call, “our natural state of being”.
A madness has overtaken the human form but as with all illness, health returns when left to its’ own natural course.
Illness can be seen as nothing more than a non-alignment with Nature and the Soul or what can also be called the Self.
Some call it a higher Self, some call it ones’ higher nature, some call it the best part of ones’ humanity, we just call it oneself.
If seen from our point of view, a Self at play creating a life story. If seen from yours, a being struggling to survive in a harsh world.
It is all a matter of perspective. You look forward, we look back and where we meet is the eternal Now of Creation.
From the Now, past and future co-exist together with no division or separation.
The Now is the great revealer and equalizer.
The Now is both the seeds of possibility as well as the fruits of your labors here on Earth.
The Now is the quickest, safest and shortest route to ones’ Glory.
Being in the Now opens countless doors of opportunity as well as countless possibilities of being and doing.
Christ lived in the Now and brought forth great possibility as well as opportunity for Mankind to develop and evolve into something greater than yourselves.
Christ lived in the Now and great healings occurred. Healing is born in the Now.
A healthy past can be returned to and at the same time, a healthy future can be entered into.
Love returns in the Now.
Life returns in the Now.
All that one is, has been, and ever will be, returns and meets in the Now and this is why being in the Now brings about miracles of healing or miracles of change within the human organism.
Your psychologies are based upon dwelling on or digging into the past. This is why it is an ineffective system that often does more harm than good. Not that the practitioners are not well intended, but when did good intentions alone, without real knowledge and skills, ever bring about great internal changes in the human psyche?
If they rather brought their patients to the Now, then miracles would occur and a true healing of both body and mind would occur.
It’s the same with medical science. Rather than treat a person by looking at what is occurring now in a body, the practitioners look at past histories and family genetics which is not the place to look if healing is to occur.
This will change in time. Man will again remember knowledge that was long forgotten yet still resides in the Now. Mankind will also remember knowledge developed far into what you call the future and bring this back to the Now.
So, now perhaps you understand if not consciously, than unconsciously, the power of the Now. If Mankind began to access knowledge from the Now, then great progress would be made in all the sciences. Man would and will discover or uncover knowledge that is always available since past and future occur simultaneously within the Now of Creation.
So, now do you understand the power of the Now?
Now, for a moment we live in the Now.
By Michael Brine
Email address: <email@example.com>
It is time for me to go public with my own insights and experiences regarding visits from off-worlders. It is time to be a bit bolder in letting the general public know that many of us have experienced contact with others, supporting our views on the existence of life elsewhere in our galaxy.
Readers may know that I believe we are not alone in this Universe. In line with that idea, I will now disclose an experience I had when I was visiting England back in September, 2003. It was at a time when the Americans were on the move into Afghanistan, and I had connected with a group of people who felt that we should do all we could to stop this. I was at the time visiting with friends down in Glastonbury, Somerset in the West Country. One evening I was socialising and heard there was a gathering planned the next day at noon to form a circle in a small village square off the main square to send out prayers for peace to stop this ‘invasion’ of Afghanistan by the US and its allies, which included Canada, my home. (As an aside my father, who was a British military officer in India in 1919, was up on the borders of Afghanistan at one point and he wrote in his daily diary: “Afghanistan will never be conquered. It’s too tribal.”)
So my friends and I joined this group at noon in a quiet little area off the city centre. As we were forming a circle a young chap ran up and asked if he could join us. Of course, we said, “Yes.” He looked at me; I nodded. He came between me and another and we proceeded to join hands in a circle. We entered the Silence sending out our thoughts/prayers for Peace. When it was over some of us were talking about meeting later and going out for an evening at a local pub about 10 miles out of town. We arranged to meet in the village square at 5:30. This young chap asked if he could join us. We said of course. We met and drove out to this pub called “The Apple Tree.” There we were given a private room off the main bar area where there was a lovely fire burning.
We shared our thoughts about things. Our young friend sat on the shelf that runs in front of the fireplace and quietly listened. He said very little but seemed absorbed by our exchanges. It was a lovely evening. Eventually we returned to the town centre where some left their cars and had crammed in with others. All were saying goodnight. I was standing off a little way waiting for my friend to join me to drive home when this young chap came towards me quietly. As he approached, I saw a circle of white light come from his heart centre into mine and I felt Love and Compassion such as I had never before or since! He quietly left and no one has seen him again, as far as I know.
We are not alone – believe it – and they are among us working and influencing us as best as they can. I feel that there is a moment coming when there will be much more openness by these Beings who are here among us, and I feel that moment is close, as the world is in such a mess.
I have had a couple of other experiences but this one was exceptional for me and I will never forget the compassion I felt in that moment.
Other articles of mine can be seen on the following web site. <www.missionignition.net/btb.
Sharie from Sending Joy is the inspired author of many heartfelt posts; she helped me to heal my guilt–and others who’ve found themselves at her blog. This guest post sums up the essence of her messages for us.
Let’s take a quiet walk with God and allow our conversation to be a simple, ‘Help me.’
“Help me to see the world through Your eyes.”
“Help me to know the lesson here.”
“Help me to find peace in this.”
“Help me to see the miracles in all things.”
“Help me to recognize my Holiness.”
“Help me to see the Holiness in others.”
“Help me to see that all I search for is right inside of me.”
“Help me to see that all I fear is my own happiness.”
“Help me see that my lack of peace is my choice for war in some form.”
“Help me to not wage war with myself and others.”
“Help me to be grateful for everything, knowing every experience is here to help me in some way.”
“Help me to listen, hear and trust in You and Your Love and to see there really is nothing else.”
Each “help me” is a prayer to be used to serve you throughout your days. Then design your own “help me” prayers to fit your specific life’s needs and experiences. After each help me, don’t forget to take a quiet moment to walk with God and listen for His answer. And then say, “Thank you.”
By Sharie, Sending Joy
“I will shine my light with God today.”
Love is the center of the Universe. We have packed a lot of stuff around it and so we can’t always see the center very well. Together let’s start peeling off the excess that hides the truth from us. That fight we had with our spouse, peel it away. That moment we yelled at our child, peel that off right now. Let’s go find the child and give him/her a hug and say I’m sorry, then throw the moment in the trash. The time we felt worthless when someone insulted us. Peel it off and look at it. Can’t we see that wasn’t us they were talking about, but only a reflection of how they saw themselves? Well that’s a relief. Now we can throw it in the trash and wish them well.
Then there’s that worrisome moment when we listened to the news and heard how bad the world is. That hopeless, helpless feeling. How is it helpful for us to hang onto that? Peel it off. Bless the world and send it healing love and throw the bad news in the trash knowing there has to be a better way, a Higher Power that can heal even the worst devastation. There has to be hope.
A beloved friend or family member in dire straits is enough to distract us from our peace. Peel that off, ask the Universe how we can help and lift our loved one up to God for healing. One by one let’s clear the junk away. Obsessions over food, drugs and alcohol. Fear from the past and fear of the future. Peel and toss!
What’s that we see up ahead? Is that a Light? Did we hear laughter? Was that a jolt of joy we felt? Come on, let work’s faster. Peel and toss. Peel and toss. Peel and toss. Ahhh! Look! It’s the center of the Universe at last! It’s wondrous! And so restful. There is perfect balance here with everything and everyone in harmony. We are amazed to discover that not only is the center of the Universe filled with Love, but we are the Love that lives at the center of the Universe.
What was that dark and dingy place we peeled away? Who cares? It’s over. And now it’s time to live. Now it’s time to shine our light with God’s and really live.
By Michael Brine
In 2004 I wrote the material (below the poem) to a friend with whom I was having an exchange. In 2006 it was later published on a website who had asked permission to use it. I have decided that perhaps the time has come to give it a wider audience given the times we are living through. Also, may the wisdom of the poetry of Baha’u’llah touch your heart. Enjoy! M. B.
“Oh Son of Spirit!
I created thee rich, why doest thou
Bring thyself down to poverty?
Noble I made thee, wherewith dost
Thou abase thyself? Out of the essence of
Knowledge I gave thee being, why seekest thou
Enlightenment from anyone beside me? Out of
The clay of love I moulded thee, why doest thou busy
Thyself with another? Turn thy sight onto thyself,
That thou mayest find Me standing within thee,
Mighty, powerful and self-subsisting.”
There are many voices out there as you are aware. It remains I feel, for each of us to use our intuition as to what we are drawn to explore and indeed listen to. Personally, I have for years felt that we have been seeded from other star systems and that our different races represent the particular star system we may have come from. I do, however, feel there is a different story for the indigenous peoples of the earth, but I am not sure exactly how, for they are very much more in tune with this planet than are us ‘others.’
Getting out of the “Box” of our conditioning is the first big step. Once we have done that it remains for us to look around at this new unfolding landscape (as we rub our eyes and get used to this new light) and see/feel what we are drawn to explore and pursue.
As you well know, we have been ‘ruled’ by fear and it is this that has controlled us over millennia by forces that have not operated in our best collective interests. (Religions have done it very effectively through ‘judgmental’ motifs, et al.) Who the ‘controllers’ are behind the scenes is a matter of speculation. There are ‘takes’ on this and I’m sure you’ve heard them. Again, intuition here is the best guide – at least for me. It is, however, very important not to get caught up in any fear motif for this only muddies the waters.
Awareness is one thing and throwing light on a negative situation is very valid to help inform – but never get caught up in acting out of fear itself. Indeed this whole epoch we are traversing through is an incredible time of discovery about who we really are. While we may see desolation and tragedy taking place everywhere around us, it is perhaps a prelude to a new unfolding discovery about our very existence and what it is all about! You cannot build a new structure on a crumbling foundation —so the ‘old’ must be exposed and removed to allow for the new growth. I feel that is what is taking place as we move through these disturbing times and most importantly – for me at least – is that we have the support of our Star family at this exceptional time with the codicil, of course, of non-interference unless we collectively ask them to. I suggest that the amazing Crop Circles are coming from the concerned beings who surround us. They come in Love.
Other articles by this writer maybe found on: www.missionignition.net/btb
Michael Brine’s e-mail address is: firstname.lastname@example.org