Twelve Cypresses

2

October 13, 2019, Arcosanti-

The account of last week’s travels has been pre-empted by revelations that came, duirng a meditation session, this afternoon.

Twelve cypress trees grace the outside of the Vaults.

As I lay in meditation,

gazing upward,

towards their midst,

the middle tree was swaying.

Responding to the breeze,

to the intonation

of a meditation master’s

spoken word,

to the positive thoughts

of those in the circle below.

Soon, the trees on either side

of the intrepid conifer

were swaying,

in unison with their peer.

Soon, I was chanting

in unison with the rest of the circle.

We brought the feeling,

the awareness,

to each of our body’s parts.

The trees brought the sense

that a change was taking place.

in the air,

in the sensitivity,

of those gathered

at their feet.

Those who were friendly

last year,

are somewhat less so.

Others have taken their places.

The twelve cypresses

tell those who are listening,

and watching,

that there is power

in proximity,

even while there is strength

in a short distance.

There is power in unified action,

but uniformity

of behaviour

can detract,

from community.

Those who led me to

a positive sense of self

are moving away.

Those  who are with me now,

are the beings

who will be at my side

for a  stage of growth

which I am only beginning

to understand.

The twelve cypresses

make clear,

that the flexible

yet firm

will endure.

 

 

 

 

Growing My Vision-Part 1

2

October 5, 2019-

At our Baha’i Unit Convention, this morning, I spotted a sign on the host’s chalkboard, with the message, “Build Vision”.  One of the constant mantras of my childhood was that we each had to see ourselves in five years, ten years, etc.

Most of us have thought of this, to the extent we think of it at all, in terms of education, career, size of family, etc.  I did all that, and now, as my formal career has little more than a year to run, albeit as a part-time substitute teacher, my vision is changing tack.

It’s always been natural, even impulsive, for me to take in the world, in my planning or visualizing.  Often, I have been chastised, for being too global.  I think the point was for me to be more present, in the here and now.  My head has made great strides, in that regard-and my focus is sharper, in the past dozen years, than it was long ago.  A good part of that came with being a caretaker. There is, as is said in such challenging environments as, say, the Alaskan Bush, the fact that “Ignorance, distraction and stupidity are the three Princes of Death”.

There is much that I have left to do, so keeping my broader vision global, whilst maintaining a sharp focus on what’s close at hand, has presented itself, with a welcome intensity.  If I slip, I know there are those among my faithful readers, not to mention, real time friends and family, who won’t hesitate to blow the whistle.

That is the supreme comfort.

Shaman-ish

4

October 2, 2019-

Last Sunday, I texted a friend, to see whether a meet-up we had planned earlier was still on.  Immediately, I got a spirit message:  They are all sick.  Thirty minutes later, a text from friend verified that.

Within the past year, two women, who do not know one another but each claim to be intuitive, have told me that my own intuition and spirituality run very deep.  After saying so, each distanced herself from me-one, by a series of vicious verbal attacks, followed by a loud demand that I not contact her again. (Interesting, as I had no plans to do so.)  The second quietly has dropped off the radar screen, as have both of our mutual friends.

I was told that my identified strengths are best used for the healing of those around me- and although I don’t possess medical knowledge, I have taken that aspect of the women’s pronouncements to heart.  In fact, helping others, with essential oils, has been part of my friendships with people, for about five years now.

I thought of these things, after finishing reading “Spiritwalker”, by Hank Wesselman.  In this account, he claims to have made contact with a distant descendant-from 5,000 years hence, at a time when mankind is regrouping and recovering from a worldwide calamity.  It is a compelling and plausible account, though I  don’t have a great sense that the future will unfold in quite the manner he sees.

Both men, and several people, both male and female, who are around them, appear to possess shamanic powers.  My erstwhile acquaintances ascribed such powers to me, the latest one saying that my using these powers is totally elective.  So it is in Mr. Wesselman’s book.  He and his descendant choose to do what they can, to help their loved ones and others in their respective communities.

I have embarked on a life of service, which has been understood by several, and greatly misunderstood by others, including the two women who diagnosed my nature.  All I know is, at the end of a given day, I am thankful to the Universe for having bestowed such gifts on me, and ask that the signs of how I may continue to be of use, be made clear, each day.  Titles, such as shaman, or even prophet, seem rather over the top, at least in my case.

Mandala

2

September 22, 2019-

The mandala was prescient.

This is the last day of summer/winter (I reference the juxtaposed seasons, in acknowledging the essential unity of north and south.  Both extreme seasons present challenges.)  Fall/spring, starting tomorrow, will offer celebrations of fruition or of new beginnings.

I drew a mandala, yesterday, in the course of attending a small peace gathering, in the early evening.  Being no great artist, but having a curiosity, I let the Universe guide my thoughts, starting with a bright, fiery orange circle and moving outwards.

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Clashing, opposing colours are placed alongside, or in succession to, one another.  A green human and animals of colours with which they are not normally associated, occupy the outer layer. That you may not be able to distinguish which is which, is a testimony to my own rudimentary art skills and to the thick, stubby crayons provided.  No matter-the message is one of coexisting with differences and among opposites.

That was a key point of the entire day.  I spent a good part of Saturday walking a hilly neighbourhood, visiting people ranging from a transplanted Southern man proudly displaying a Confederate flag to a young woman professional and her dogs, all for the sake of verifying that the homes either had working smoke alarms or that my team mate and I installed them, before leaving the area.  It was all part of a concerted effort by the Red Cross to keep yet another neighbourhood safe.  Most people in the area covered have indeed tended to their own safety.  Heightened awareness, and insurance company diligence, have greatly lessened our workload.

After resting a bit, the evening Peace events beckoned.  I walked a labyrinth, at a church up the street, savouring the serenity that such calm attention to detail brings.  Then came mandala activity, followed by three of us Baha’is saying prayers, in front of  a very small audience-quality not quantity!  Before we prayed, a very nice lady, who had practiced three songs of peace, but had not had an audience for her scheduled performance, was invited to offer the songs.  Delivered a capella, these original songs, in a soft jazz lilt, created a lingering air of power and strength.

The evening brought another activity- Dances of World Peace, which I learned is an ongoing monthly activity of the Prescott Sufi Community.  Building peace between individuals, these dances involve following a few fairly simple moves, and rotating among partners-without regard to gender or age.  The point is acknowledging each person’s presence and spirituality.  That draws people out of pre-conceived notions and out of their comfort zones.  Yet, as I think of it, that which takes me out of my own comfort zone, has the effect of expanding that zone.

The mandala was prescient.  It had me draw opposites together, which is really the point of world unity.  The past several days, most recently this morning, I have been contacted by  social media friends from countries I’ve never visited, and which have not been on my immediate radar.  The Universe is telling me, a few years in advance, to get ready to expand my world, and comfort zone, even further.

The words that came to me, to write on the mandala:  “Night is the frontier we cross. Daylight waits beyond the gate of trial.”

Completion

2

September 2, 2019, Superior, AZ-

Persistence,

and attention to detail,

lead to completion.

Cutting corners

leads to stagnation,

or to wasted time.

A small group got

together,

and worked on

an onerous task,

largely finishing

in five days’ time.

The rest will depend on

dryer conditions,

which in Arizona

is just a matter of time.

An entrepreneur has moved

her shop, three doors down

from where she was.

There will be a grand opening

of the new place,

tomorrow.

There was considerable

attention to detail,

even redoing some preparation,

that was set back,

when an opponent of her move,

scrawled graffiti on the storefront,

to “prevent gentrification”.

When an area is unused

and there is no tenant,

occupying the spot

is not gentrification.

It is taking responsibility.

It is  moving a community

towards completion.

 

Gathering My Moss

0

August 28, 2019-

I have, at long last, begun writing a series of chapters that outline my life. So far, I have covered up to sixth grade, which has taken four chapters.  I find my long term memory is amazingly intact, a comforting discovery, as this exercise is as much for healing and inner peace, as it is for the sake of memoir.

The remaining six decades will take some time, being as they have been far more involved and take in a lot more territory-both geographic and psychological- than my first, somewhat sheltered, eleven years.

As it is a highly personal account, this volume will be first shared with family, then in a publish on demand arrangement with friends. For now, I am keeping it on Google Drive and will run things by my son, siblings and mother, once I get to a certain point, probably the sections on my high school graduation and transition into adulthood.

Again, the purpose of this is to process and clear up any remaining conflicts within myself, which is one of the insights I drew from a recent energy wave healing session.

The Wheat and the Chaff

3

August 26, 2019-

Sitting at home, this sultry evening, working on a project for a friend, I got this insistent message to walk downtown, and visit Frannie’s, a frozen yogurt shop and bakery.  Setting the work a side, I headed into the bright sunset and, ten minutes later, found myself one of two patrons, in the final thirty minutes of  the shop’s open hours.

The other patron, it turned out, was an 81 year-old farmer from a small village about 35 miles to the southwest.    We chatted about a steak house in the village, and how it hangs on, week after week, with a great facility but few customers.  The owner of the steak house hails from somewhere in the Northeast.

That led to a discourse about our current President, one of his rivals and a group of Congresswomen, and how being immersed in the culture of a certain area makes one behave, consistently, in a certain way.  The gentleman expressed concerns about the motives of those who oppose our current President, whom he regards as a crusader.

I chose to listen, and not counter any of this, as it’s all going to turn out as it is supposed to transpire.  I am not much of a political animal, preferring to work across the spectrum as, the last time I checked, we were all put here to work together.  It may not always be easy to hear theories that seem made from whole cloth, yet they are only that-theories, which are subject to change, in light of new information.  This is as true of some notions that I have had, as it is of anyone else’s.

Just as his comments were about to turn into a rant, my former co-worker, her husband, daughter and daughter’s boyfriend emerged from the shop.  Delighted greetings, and exchanges of how things were going for each of us, took the next few minutes. Learning that an all-woman staff was in place, in my former work site, is an affirmation of what I said above:  The right thing happens, even if after a fashion.

Once the family left, our conversation turned to health practices.  At first, he admonished me for not having taken better care of myself, en route to age 70.  I mentioned some things that I AM doing, on my own behalf, and he relented a bit.  The gems of wisdom he then imparted, struck me as the main reason I was led to go to the shop, in the first place.

Baking soda and vinegar could augment my efforts at trimming down (Slim shakes from do Terra, along with more fruits and vegetables).  It would have to be good quality baking soda, with the Vinegar of the Four Thieves that I have on hand.  Check, for tomorrow morning!  He seconded my use of frankincense and melaleuca, for skin issues.  My exercise regimen sounded just fine.  So, his theory of a decrepit sixty-something was cast aside, with new information.

I still have work to do.  It was a walk well-taken.

Back In The Saddle

2

August 22, 2019-

I got in a full-day’s work today, after five months’ hiatus.  Of course, there hasn’t been a lot of idleness during that time, but I have missing being around children and youth, on  a regular basis, nipping at my consciousness.

Today went very well.  The few who wanted to mess around, didn’t meet with much success.  I am long past the point where I let mischief get to me.  On the other hand, I don’t let it spread.  The rules of the day are set by the regular teacher, so the parameters are already in place.

Children and teens know this is how things work, and those with whom I interact are quite relieved that I am not here to be a slacker.  Simply put, this brief period of my presence in their lives needs to be of support for their broader plans, hopes and dreams, and of deterrence to the obstacles, both self-induced and put in place by others, that would derail those broader plans.

My goal:  To be of maximum support, to each young person who comes into a room where I am working.

Undying

8

August 20, 2019-

This is not a post about vampires or zombies.  It is a post about how the love I feel towards many; in fact, just about all those who come to mind.  I say “just about all”, as the few who have consistently repaid kindness with viciousness are those who I need to keep at arm’s length, while still not wishing them ill.  There is always room for forgiveness and a new start.

At any rate, I am thinking specifically of a few young ladies, with whom my contact is mostly, if not entirely, on social media, who are like daughters to me.  One resurfaced today, on my feed, and I could only feel relief that she is in a safe place.  Others are pretty constant here, and that always brings a smile to my heart.

There is a family wedding coming soon-in my heart family, that is.  I find this is as important to me as any of my birth family’s nuptials.  The bride defines self-made woman and I can feel this marriage will be a particular success.  She, and her mother (also  a self-made woman), have long been very close to my heart.

A good woman, whom I had the pleasure of meeting several times, recently passed to the Presence of her Lord.  One of the points in her obituary was her kindness to even the most derelict of people.  She would get after those who were slovenly, but always in a gentle way.  No one was beyond redemption, in her view.

I hope to keep on, with this state of heart, getting up each day with a vow to show love and respect to those who cross my path-and to be consistent about it.  That doesn’t mean being a doormat-as that would not be loving to myself.  It does mean walking in Light.

May this be an undying state of heart.

Lighthouse, Shimmering In The Heat

0

June 18, 2019, Amarillo-

I made it a point to stop here today, for two reasons.  One was my old Xanga buddy, Wes, and his ties to the Amarillo that was.  The other was Lighthouse Trail, in Palo Duro State Park.  I always meet the most delightful people, through both Wes and Palo Duro.  Today was no exception.

Texas Tidbits (Wes’ old Xanga moniker) suggested a meet-up at Smokey Joe’s, which I recall as a most delightful spot.  The cutest, and toughest, little lady was our server last time.  Her co-worker, J, was our gracious and ever-attentive hostess, on this fine afternoon.  We sat around for about an hour, while I savoured a Tex-Mex burger, and solved at least some of the issues that plague mankind.

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Now, I could sit in the presence of Wes and the ladies, for hours on end, but my hiking legs would not forgive me for such self-indulgence.  So, I bid pardner adieu and set off for Palo Duro.

Upon arrival, the lovely and friendly ranger pointed out that many folks had been their before me, snapping up all the campsites. No worries here, though.  The main point of my visit was that Light House in the desert, shimmering as it was, in the heat.  I brought enough water to fuel a truckload of cattle, and set off on the six-mile round trip.

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Capitol Peak and an unnamed “human” figure loom in the near distance, before the trail to Light House Rock veers to the right.

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Other magnificent formations grace the way to Light House.

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The first close-up view of the Light House formation, came as I reached the crest of the only real ascent of the hike.

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Here they are, one at a time.

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This shows the actual distance between the two rocks.

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As the first rumblings of a storm were heard, I took this last close-up.

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Whilst I was doing this, another man was contenting himself with climbing a path to the top of the rock on the left.  He spent several minutes there, fortunately getting down, as the skies darkened and racing up the path, to avoid the rain.

As I was walking back, I met a young couple with a dog, and pointed out to them that the storm was getting much closer.  They deiced to head back and stayed with me to the parking area.  E and M are a delightful pair, reminding me of my son and daughter-in-law.  We noted the lushness of the surrounding area, as a sign of the copious rain that the Panhandle has enjoyed this Spring.

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We got back to our cars, just as the rain was intensifying.  No sooner was everyone safely inside the vehicles, than hail started falling-furiously.   Yet, once we got to the park entrance:  Voila!  The sunshine returned.  With no camping site, I drove back to Amarillo, and have a room at Camelot Inn and Suites.

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Yes, another good day was had in the desert!

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