Monthly Archives: March 2015

Endurance: Find and Commit to Your Story

daffodilsSpring peepers and fearless hail-battered daffodils saturate the Ozarks with vernal song and color. They exude Existence.  Confidently, naturally, playing their parts in the Season’s theatrical emergence.

How to do we find our way to such certitude of Being and Expression? How do we discover, claim, grow, and re-grow into our individual Sacred Role, our Natural Niche, as we and our life circumstances shift and mature within the Planet’s rapidly evolving narrative?

Blogger Christa Rose Avampato recently offered a wise post on the subject of change and life purpose, emphasizing the necessity of perseverance, alertness, and self-awareness.

I add the suggestion of paying attention to the archetypal stories and deep-sourcing myths whose symbols appeal to the imagination and stir the Heart’s curiosity.   Hero?  Warrior?  Healer? Mother? Bard?  Traveler?  Fire Keeper? Chalice? Dagger? Rose? Desert? Mountain Top?

Dropping into a character’s essence and mission evokes hints of our own potentiality and direction.  Thoughtfully considered in relation to current life circumstances, these intimations catalyze Self-clarity and prepare us to choose.  To act day by day. Stretching.  Experimenting.  Building endurance of Being and Expression. Claiming our role.  Perhaps even glimpsing Life’s guiding Intention and affirming our place therein.

I’m currently delving into stories of alchemists and the Great Healing.  I feel this is not a final myth for me, but rather a much-needed transitional one, urging transfiguration of fears blocking full action on long-held writing aspirations.  It’s not an easy role for me, but what heart-worthy effort is?

What myths or approaches keep you in touch with your purpose?

Effort: Let Memory Rule

crocus 2Last week I joined the core circle of the Heart of Many Ways.   This was a risk for me.  Memories of spiritual community dysfunction, in other words memories of my former life, threw up warnings on all sides.  In truth I’m not quite finished unraveling the lingering knots of misused power and my own naivete.

Yet the beautiful potential of meaningful, cooperative creativity persists in my heart, like a bulb waiting for the opportune rain, sunlight and warmth of springs.   I can’t uproot it.  Nor do I want to.

The Heart of Many Ways’ mission of maintaining a shared physical home for people of all faiths and spiritual paths strikes a worthy note.  Yet it is the active commitment to consensus decision-making that actually precipitated my decision to accept the invitation to participate.  An invitation in my mind to learn and to contribute.

Experience has ingrained in me a few requirements for collective blossoming and thriving.  The application of relational skills that build understanding, along with processes (such as consensus decision making) which nurture group and individual creative power are two.  At the root of these outer practices must stand spiritual memory, an abiding, active remembrance of Heart-fullness and Communion.  Many faiths, many ways, lead to the reclamation and flowering of this Memory. The challenge is to make it so.

In your experience what is essential for cooperative endeavors in the family, community or otherwise?

Effort: Spiritual Amnesia? Remember the Heart.

Saturday I went to the city, something I haven’t done since the autumn of 2014, a long hiatus even for me. The purpose of my journey was to post advertisements for a locally-sourced theater performance engineered by some friends in the spirit of One Billion Rising and ending violence against women.

The hour drive from my rural Carroll County road to Highway 71 Business and Fayetteville’s well-appointed shops and bustling university offers time to transition from one habitat and rhythm to another. Even so, right off the bat, after parking my dirt-dusted car, I missed a crosswalk signal and a curb and nearly stumbled in front of a turning Subaru.pig 2

Eventually, however, I shifted into the urban cadence. I slipped through crowded doorways into aromatic, narrow coffee shops like Common Ground. I taped and pinned posters with the help of delightfully helpful college students, chuckled at the bounding razorbacks on random street corners, and studied the collective movement of traffic and shoppers while sipping an 8.45 ounce bottle of Pellegrino, a treat that can’t be found in that perfect size at home.

But after a few hours, the noise and bustle began to grate. I was out of posters and out of synch.

Getting out of synch with the Heart happens, too. Some people call it “spiritual amnesia.” It’s easy to stumble into, even easier than stumbling on an unfamiliar street. After all, modern society brims with stressors and rabbit-hole distractions.

I’m definitely not equating my visit to the city or urban-living itself with being out of step with the Heart.   I admire people who can dive into metropolitan life and thrive, spiritually and otherwise. Maybe you’re one of these hearty folks.

Urban or rural, alertness to being out of rhythm with the Heart is essential. So is learning what this dissonance has to offer and knowing when and how to get back home: home to the Heart’s beat – its power, clear aims, creative passion and nurturing love.

Effort: Honoring Earth Memories

grassesThis land remembers. The limestone, the White River, the patient hillsides rising from historic Blue Spring remember the feet and spirit of the Cherokee people who passed through this territory on the forced march from Georgia in 1839.

I felt these energy memories the first weekend I arrived to live on quiet Blue Spring Road.   Radiant. Palpable. Ripe with Suffering. Rich with a people’s inherent Dignity.   It was just a matter of touching the Earth and listening with Heart.

This morning I sat in the drizzle on the roadside, watching the next round of sleet and snow approach from the West.   Another cold, grey day, yet the surrounding umber grasses glowed visually warm, fire keepers of last Autumn’s sun.   I thought of the Cherokee and the many other Native and early European people who sought healing and peace at Blue Spring. I recalled, as I do each day in meditation, contemporary friends striving to live authentically with a spirit service and meaningful action.

Do they make a difference?   These acknowledgments and remembrances?   I can’t say for sure. But my experience here, on this stretch of hallowed ground indelibly touched by the Trail of Tears, tells me that the fortitude of the Human Heart is our fire to keep, to tend.   Through remembering. In honoring. Through acknowledgment. In our effort to live and walk with dignity upon the Earth.