Monday, August 30, 2010

every act of creation

"Every act of creation is first of all an act of destruction"

~Pablo Picasso



::elizabeth::


I think of the many examples in nature that demonstrate this principal. In order for a seed to sprout, the seed coat must first be broken down by water, warmth, and sometimes abrasion. The caterpillar must enter complete darkness and turn into a sack of mush before it can become a beautiful butterfly. Tiny bits of earth must wash away and huge chunks must fall away to create a beautiful waterfall. We admire and appreciate all the end results, but if we took the perspective of the seed, the caterpillar, the mountain we would surely feel as though it were the end of our world…the end of life as we know it.

The process of destruction and creating is happening all the time on this beautiful planet of ours. That is what our planet is all about. But lately, the cycles of destruction and creating seem to be speeding up. There are many of us that are in the midst of transitions in our personal lives. We are the microcosm reflecting what is happening at the macroscopic level. How we handle our personal transitions is directly related to the greater changes that must take place at the planetary level. We each have a piece of our planet to claim, heal, and create into something new. This energy is powerful and intense. And the process can be painful. Can we trust this process? Can we be fully present as this process unfolds? Can we experience this with grace? The choice is ours both individually and collectively.




::lisa::


Life and death; creation and destruction, they go hand in hand. Life is magnificent; death is distressing. Creation is beautiful; destruction is devastating. Without one we would not know the other. This is the yin and yang of our existence.

The changing of the seasons gives us a very clear understanding of the cycle of creation and destruction. Springtime blossoms with new life and growth everywhere we look, summer is full of action and doing and growing, fall brings about a slower pace allowing time for preparation, while winter provides a quiet space for deep inner work and/or death. With each season we witness a piece of destruction and a new birth into a new phase of being. Yet, in the end of the seasons, we circle right back around to where we started, bringing with us a new piece of knowledge and a new piece of ourselves. It is here through this process that I find myself growing, not only with age, but also with awareness.

Right now my personal focus lies within the destruction of my own judgments as far as what I deem good and bad; comfortable and uncomfortable; acceptable and unacceptable in my experiences. I know that within every experience that I experience, both positive and negative, I can choose what can be created out of it. Deep down, within the destruction of my opinions, lies the wealth of an open heart. This is one overwintering that brings about a rejuvenation of the soul along with blossoming new visions.

Monday, August 23, 2010

real riches

“Ordinary riches can be stolen, real riches cannot. In your soul are infinitely precious things that cannot be taken from you.”

~Oscar Wilde



::elizabeth::


With eyes still shut, I wake by thanking God for the gift of the day. As I stretch my body gently with body prayers and a bit of yoga, I remind myself of my vessel. Then I have a practice of giving gratitude for and sending love to the family, friends, angels, and spirit guides in my life. It is a way of starting off my day remembering how well supported I am in this life. Next, I sit in the silence and stillness of the morning and try my best to connect with my soul and with God.

These practices help me remember what is important, what is real, before the world attempts to prove otherwise. Grounding and balancing practices help me connect with the deepest parts of myself that don’t sway with current events, wants and desires, and the weather. The illusion that the world provides is convincing, and it is easy for me to get distracted by the many pointless games that exist. The game of money and finances is a really good example. The game of material possessions is another. When I am feeling really balanced and connected, I like to play the game of give it away….give it all away. It is really about busting through the illusion of lack. And the funny thing about this game is that the more I give away the more my ‘real riches’ grow.



::lisa::


It has been in the times when I am pushed beyond the shadows behind materialism that I have found my “real riches” grow and flourish the most. Being pushed beyond my limits very often sets me deep into a rut. It is not an easy place to be. However, it provides me with a space to unlock the doors to a much deeper understanding of not only myself, but of my life as a whole.

Very often my family is faced with financial challenges that force us to stop and take a very close look at what is truly important to us. The occupations that we choose; one stay at home homeschooling mama and one self employed tile setter papa, doesn’t provide us with a huge amount of financial stability. When ever we are placed in a tight spot at first I tend to struggle. I feel squeezed, and sometimes kind of irritated that I can’t just jump in my car and get to the store for whatever it is in that moment I think I need. More and more I am learning that when I take the time to acknowledge and accept my discomfort and struggles, I am able to unlock some of the greatest understanding and freedom within. It is up to me to decide how quickly I can let go of my inner struggle and see all that is around me to be grateful for.

I very often go over and over in my mind what is really important vs. what I often think is really important. What I need vs. what I may want. The answer always points to a deep treasure locked away safely right inside my hearts center. The treasures that are stored in there, no one can ever take away from me. Even though many of these gifts have yet to be discovered, having this shift in my outlook in life has helped me to gain a deep sense of trust in myself, as well as, the idea that no matter what... we are always truly blessed.

Monday, August 16, 2010

the realization of love

“Love is the difficult realization that something other than yourself is real." ~Iris Murdoch




::elizabeth::

In motherhood we learn to let go. We receive the first lesson when we let go of our perceptions of who we are when our bodies blossom into unimagined forms. The next lesson comes when we let go and surrender to the waves of contractions in order to birth our babies into the world. When we hold our blessed babes in our arms for the first time, the realization comes flooding in….ahhhh…this is what this whole thing called life is really all about. And during our babymoon we revel in the realization of this love. In mothering our babes, our hearts fully blossom.

Then every day, in sometimes unperceivable ways, we continue to let go. It is a lesson we learn over and over again as we mother our children. We let go of baby toes that turn into feet that outgrow shoes in less than a season. We let go of toddling shadows that stretch out into long legs that dance and run ahead. We let go of any illusion of control we think we have when our child gets their first boo-boo or when they turn 18 and take their first road trip. And our love continues despite all this letting go. In order to realize that something other than ourselves is real, we must let go. In order to love, we must let go.



::lisa::

I remember when I had my first born. As she was placed on my belly and wriggled up to my breast for the very first time, my body surged with a love that I never knew before. It was this powerful feeling that now continues to beam and grow within me as I watch my children and family grow. It has been a form of love that I have carried with me into every other close relationship I have ever since.

Love is not always easy. In fact, I have personally experienced that it can be very difficult most times, especially when it involves those you care and love the most. I love my children and family more than anything in the world, but there are times when they push me to the furthest edge of my sanity than I ever imagined possible. Often times when I am faced with a lesson in love, the outer appearance of my life may be throwing me for a loop, by putting situations in front of me that cause me to question myself and others deeply. However, when I take the time to truly sit with myself and my heart, going within to hear what it is that I really need to be thinking about in the moment, the answer is usually love.

Love is ever evolving and changing, causing us to do so along side it, and sometimes I find myself wanting to resist that change. Change is something unpredictable, in the same way that love is. In those moments when I fully embrace the challenges that love throws my way and dance with it, I am able to walk away with my heart swelling and I know that I too am emerging as a more open and loving person. There is so much to learn in this life and experience and love is just the start of it.

Monday, August 9, 2010

wideness and wonder

"I have picked flowers where I found them - have picked up sea shells and rocks and pieces of wood... When I found the beautiful white bones on the desert I picked them up and took them home too... I have used these things to say what is to me the wideness and wonder of the world as I live in it."
 ~Georgia O'Keefe




::elizabeth::

We have several spots in our home where we display the treasures that we have gathered from nature. In my son's eyes, everything is a treasure. “Mommy, isn’t this rock beautiful, “ he will say. He is teaching me (or reminding me) how to develop a sense of appreciating everything for exactly what it is and modeling for me the ability to see the ‘wideness and wonder’ in anything.

I think this is why I take pictures. For me it is a way to capture and preserve a moment of wonder and bliss. These pictures of mine become a touchstone for me, a way to remember a single moment. I have noticed lately, that a lot of people share my passion for photography. I think we all are desperate to be in the moment, in the vastness of a single moment, and are searching for some way to preserve it. Of course, attempting to grasp now-ness is futile endeavor. The best we can do gather our treasures and take our photos to remind ourselves that it is possible. It is possible to enter that vastness. We’ve been there before. We have proof.

There are days when I master seeing the beauty in it all. And there are days that I struggle. My proof encourages me. It keeps me looking. And looking is a way of showing up and opening up to the experience. It is a way of saying to the Universe, “I’m here. I’m here now.”




::lisa::

I often marvel at my children and how connected they are to little pieces of the Earth. They are always finding feathers, collecting rocks and sticks, and bringing home even larger objects like animal bones and skulls. These are things that speak to them loud and clear. To them, these are very special treasures.

Behind all of our masks and hidden agendas, we know that the little pieces of nature and Earth that we come across on our path in life, are extremely healing and informative to us. Very often when I find a feather or a wild plant that really draws my attention to it, I look it up and research a bit. Every time I do this, I receive some lesson from the info I have come across involving what I was attracted to. And every time, within that info, is some tidbit that I needed to hear at that point in my life. It has brought about clarity to something that I needed a bit of clarity on.

So much of our world is now based on books and a different kind of “knowledge”, which undoubtedly has its place. However, I try my best to tune in to my own inner knowing, that instant attraction, and all knowing energy as much as I can. I nurture my children’s innate abilities to connect with it in such a carefree way and learn from them all the time.

Today I got stung by a bee on my foot. A bee is productive for sure and full of great divine sweetness. My guess, is that even when I am being productive, and walking in strides, I should make sure I have a clear vision as to where I am headed. Even when we have the greatest of intentions in our life, we still need to make sure we have our eyes (and mind) wide open.

:::
thanks to mama bird for passing this quote along to us

Monday, August 2, 2010

first do this

“First you need only look: Notice and honor the radiance of Everything about you... Play in this universe. Tend All these shining things around you: The smallest plant, the creatures and objects in your care. Be gentle and nurture. Listen...”       ~Anne Hillman



::elizabeth::

I was having a stressful week this week and I had a lot to do.  I decided the best plan of action was to take Jude to one of my favorite places in nature to play in a creek.  Obviously, I did not make any progress on the projects that were suspended in the air above me, but that time spent was critical for me to stay grounded which is so necessary to do anything well.  The time I spend on the computer, driving my car, shopping in stores needs to be balanced. Escaping to a quiet place is a much needed balm that soothes my soul on the deepest level.

When the world gets too confusing for me, this is what I do to recalibrate. For me, looking for the tiny bits of beauty and wonderment in nature is quite healing and balancing for me. Nature is full of sacred geometry and light to help us reconnect on the deepest levels of our being.  And we really don't have to do anything for this gift...just show up and play.



::lisa::

I truly believe that nature has so much to teach humans. Whenever my day seems to be going a muck, venturing into nature remedies it. This may be as simple as pruning back my raspberry bushes, or as in depth as packing up the kids for a hike in the woods. No matter which way we head, nature always soothes my soul.

When I am submersed in nature I am always comforted by the strong sense of well rooted peace and balance I find there. Here I can fully open my eyes to my surroundings and the endless beauty it holds. All of my worries seem to vanish and my mind has the space to shift into proper perspective. I become freed to surpass my own inner judgments that all too often keep me from having my eyes open to this experience at all times.

Things are shining all around us, right now more then ever. To me all of the pieces come together and seem to say, “Come on, just play, and don’t forget to wear a smile along the way”. There is no time for egotistical mundane. We are here to LIVE…fully. So let’s do just that. Together, we can shift the reality we see, and work together to create a wonderful new world of peace and harmony. After all, deep down, that’s what we want. It may be a bit of work, but working together is what will take us there.
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