Oceans of Love

It often feels impossible to describe the love contained within me. Even when I cannot give it words, it frightens people. They seem to be confused that the course of love would somehow find them beyond their beliefs or behaviors, that they would be missed or their cry for help would be unheard, and that kind of love would just appear, even unbidden.

It courses through every fiber of my being, slips from the pores into the spaces between grains of sand, dances on the wind, drops roots under lake beds, and glides through tears to the waters everywhere. The enormity of it is staggering, even to me, sometimes because I don’t control it. I just am.

It is uncontainable, unstoppable and touchable, visceral, thick power and peace.

It means I feel it all and am given the blessing of knowing the pain and the benediction brought by beauty, the lies beneath the scars, and the truths of the heart.

In moments of deepest despair, it is the buoy and the life raft. For all of us.

For this, I was made.

For you, I was made.

You are so loved.

Be not afraid.

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Speak Now or Forever…

The weight of this sad time we must obey

Speak what we feel, not what we ought to say.

The oldest hath borne most, we that are young

Shall never see so much, nor live so long.

~ King Lear Scene 5, Act 3

 

Oh, my love. In the midst of despair I only heard “Don’t say anything to anyone. I cannot tell anyone who you are or why you are here. You must keep you mouth shut, not even share your prayers with anyone. When you give your prints in a sweat, hold your tongue. Do not say what you are praying for or who you are to be working with. Say nothing. Hold everything inside.”

Behind those words were deeply held fears passed down to you by those who ‘taught these things’. There was a time, not as long ago as many may think, that holding everything inside is what kept individuals alive and communities intact; when the threat of the ‘savage’ accessing the powers that be and to Be as they were meant to meant death for those who spoke allowed, sang and danced with the rhythm of the heart of all that is.

Those who taught you these things were taught by others who tried desperately to erase your families from their own identities, histories, stories and, for some, existence.

However, we face something very similar now and to not speak truths of things; truths of things of spirit, the spirit of nature and nature of spirit, and our relationship with all those things. To hold our tongue still and heart closed will continue the process of losing identity, history, story, and, yes, for some, existence.

For two years, I’ve not known what to say when the Ancestors and Others who walk with me have shouted, “SPEAK!” with an occasional, more gentle, “Speak, child. Speak.”  I’ve asked again and again, “What would you have me say?” not in such a gentle way. Now I know.

Now I will hold neither my tongue nor my heart. There is no turning back. When They ask me to go find those disappeared at the hands of others and being disappeared because their sight and their voices, too, are being blinded and shuttered, I will. I will find them to bring them home; some to their families and some to their own hearts, their own nature. I will speak so their truths may be heard.

I will be quiet no more and ask you, my kind sir, do the same for we must do this together. No one of us can do this alone. We were never meant to.

In Telling the Holiness, I wrote :

In the Apache tradition, storytelling is to ‘tell the holiness’.  The myths that speak to the holy are “performed only by medicine men and women for the purposes of enlightenment and instruction.”

We may have finally come to the time where many  realize that storytelling isn’t only for medicine-people to tell; the truths of all things holy come from each of us, as much as we draw breath our own stories give us life.

In the time before we were not separate from ourselves and the places we stood upon and looked up into, we were a people so connected to the earth that the earth took our pain in the same manner it gave us life.  Absorbed it like a rare rain in the desert and held onto it like it was holding onto their dear lives. At one point, back in our time, we were each those people.  And, now they are mere remnants of our fabric; tossed and hidden away when not murdered from existence, removed from the collective conscious except when it appears to serve our romantic nature or reliance on greed.

I listen to those struggling to maintain communities in a good way fight to keep parking lots from plowing over medicines. My heart breaks when I’ve brought a 40 year old man back to his tribe but the 15 year old sitting next to him is desperate to escape “because I can’t be me here. I’m not safe. I’m not ready to kill myself, though. Yet.”

And in the places where we have shoved those people who represent the past that we have collectively deemed unworthy of our attention, we die along with them. As they bleed the interest in life, the earth withholds it–for them and for us. There’s no need to feed & give life if life is no longer lived in the manner it was made to support.  And this is repeated around the globe, again and again, even as we struggle to manipulate natural and created systems to feed our futures.  This cycle will be repeated as if a contagion until we vanish.

Like those before us who were starved of connection to their sacred places & spaces, we disconnect even further from each other.  Some run in any number of ways to escape, some escape to feel free yet yearn to come home.  Those who have walked before and those now.

I have felt the lost.   I have held their hearts in my hand and I have stood in the spaces where the ancients realized all that is was no longer; that relationship with the ground, that relationship with each other, the ties that bind us as a people, that relationship between spaces below and above; the very representations of all that is home.

To walk onto home and feel the defeat between the highs and to hear the kindness of strangers turn to meanness to kin who aren’t enough of any measure to be accepted by family or community, reveals that same lostness, but not of the Ancestors but in the hearts of those beating now. “How can I be me if I can’t be seen?” “All this talk about spirits, why am I called crazy for seeing these things?” “I can’t tell anyone the trees speak to me.” “I could just die.”

Oh, love. Please stay. I hear you. I’m coming. I feel you. I’m coming.

 

 

Deadly Devotion

To  cry “Save our Mother”

while prying

open the thighs of her daughters,

slashing and burning through souls…

 

To dance for Durga and honor the cow

while murdering

their  brothers in skin and sinew

incensing  streets with iron-clad odor….

 

To dutifully bow to the East

with desire

to bend little boys over at the waist…

 

To lay flowers at the feet of the Virgin

while planting Los Desaparecidos

and mulching them with lies….

 

To pray in my name for  bounty

and well-being

while blaspheming the same

 in bloodlust…

Devotion was never meant to be deadly. Those who let the blood of others in any holy name, in any name of any god or God, are beyond hypocrisy. Those who would diverge from their devotion to cause harm to the least of these are apostasy in action. Those who praise and bully from the pulpit are neither prayerful or praiseworthy.

Belittling or betraying the connection between humanity and the holy, to serve as fear-monger, lyncher, and liar and money-changers at the temple of greed does not offer hope, share love, or imply sacrifice worthy of divine notice.

Supporting and replicating those processes and their perpetrators in the here-world, does not give one special access to any after-world. Nor  is it an loving reflection of spiritual communion or any kind of community.

These are not acts of any devil other than ourselves and we have reached a point where we need to decide if our ‘devotion’ is of that replicating the fierce love of those we claim fidelity to or if we’re going to continue false offerings for favors while acting in opposition to those loving aspects they represent. Do we choose to help and heal or harm?

 

The Occupied Woman

Legions live within

the boundaries

of her skin.

 

Joined not at the hip but

breath in breath

they are,

they walk,

they weave.

The Old Ones occupy

her heart

in one blood

the echo chamber of Ancients.

 

Spiders occupy her hair,

their lighted threads

weaving to and fro,

stars to sons.

 

Light occupies her eyes,

Fire is the kindling of her soul,

Roots run through veins

Drumming the lungs of others.

 

Of hoofed feet,

winged arms

poured magic from

pawed hands and

horned tendrils of silk.

The pulsing, poolings of stillness

and

songs of the ancients echoing.

Again.

A thousand souls

A multitude of expressions of one flame

Inhabit this mosaic,

This occupied woman.

Experiencing Christ

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What does it mean when people see you as Jesus or have an experience with Jesus when with you?

There is more than one answer to this question so I’ll begin with the first. I appear as Jesus to many because he is part of who I am. In addition, when people chose to embark on the interaction with me as part of their spiritual journey, who and what they most connect with tend to be the first to appear before them. Some of that is connected to how they define themselves, their own journey, and who they perceive to be their guides into their own unfolding. For some, that is Jesus. For others it may be angels, family, or a particular animal.

The experience of Jesus while in my presence comes in several forms and, although not dependent upon definitions of self or connection to faith, is an indication of where many people are in their life. For instance, some people re-experience crucifixion. And in this, they feel their own emotions connected to physically nailed to the cross,  tenderly loved when brought down from it. For some in this group, it is an expression of surrendering into trusting something other than themselves. Many describe the effect as one of knowing they are transitioning from self-sabotage, suffering, or perceptions of figurative crucifixion by peers or family into a space of self-love or into the loving arms of a mother-figure they’ve never had.

Others have had distinct experiences of the resurrection where the stone is rolled away and light can be seen; where they can see beyond their suffering and that of others.  They see themselves rise, feel weightless, connected to God or angels or particular totems they identify with. Particularly for women, there is the simultaneous feeling of hips separating as if they are giving birth to themselves again.. Each of those have particular meaning to the individual I am with.

Some have more explicit experiences that require no interpretation. One of my favorite stories is from a few years ago when a man I was working with shared this:

I saw and felt him where you are, or as you, and he seemed to reach into someplace both within him but outside himself–like he and the universe were one–and he took his heart and placed it into mine.

Most people who do have the experience of Christ with me  see or feel him as a larger group of Beloveds, guides, sages and such who work in concert with me. They do often perceive that his hands feel differently than mine or others present. And, not everybody has experiences or visions with Jesus while working with me. In fact, those who come expecting it are often disappointed because they believe he or I should appear in a particular way. And, this just doesn’t work like that.

 

No Time for Miracles?

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Yesterday, I watched part of a documentary called Holy Ghost. The whole movie is an exploration of proselytizing around the globe by bringing healing energy–here called the Holy Spirit or Power of Jesus–to the streets.

In it, Darren Wilson, the director, interviewed a Pentecostal minister who is ‘ministering’ at a temple while the Holy Ghost crew is there. When the discussion segued into healing powers, here’s what the minister had to say:

…in the history of the church, there were certain times where miracles and extraordinary events happened.

We shouldn’t necessarily expect them today.  Especially when we have the complete bible.”

I disagree entirely.

We should expect miracles. In fact, they’ve never stopped occurring–those things of awe & wonder for which there is no explanation. We should desire them, acknowledge and honor them.  When we can accept that things occur without easy, logical or scientific reason or explanation, we will become more open to the truth of other people’s experience without judgment.  We’ll be open to more of our own experiences without judgment.

And now, more than ever, is absolutely the time.