Thursday, January 30, 2014

Wondering About Words - Can Intuition and Systems Save Us?

In the last three days, I've found myself wondering about words.  While shopping for a new computer, I heard the term 'data migration.' I wanted to respond to the salesperson, "Excuse me. Birds migrate."  That night I also learned of Leon, not a new neighbor or friend, but the personified entity like a modern god, with his grip on Atlanta according to the news. No offense, Georgia and Alabama friends, but Leon didn't have his grip on you.  A winter storm was passing over your area.  Lastly I came upon a site connected to our local newspaper the Tennessean where I read the "Dirt Report" for up-to-date listings of what's growing in Nashville. This made a usually calm and peaceful me want to scream. 

What is going on on Mother Earth, really?  I call myself The Good News Muse and I truly believe compassion and awareness are blossoming all around the world but I want the Earth Report!!!  Then I remembered this story from wondering about words in the past. I dug around in my site and found it. 


Not long ago while hurriedly walking through a big box store of the home supply and hardware type, I was caught by surprise as a woman's voice said, "In this intuitive system...."

I stopped. Was I in a self-help store instead? I looked right to see a woman on a tv screen informing passers-by of a nearby washer and dryer's capacity to intuitively determine what one's clothes need.

'Excuse me' I thought, 'Machines now have intuition when most folks don't even know what that means?'

Then I second guessed myself.  Maybe most folks know about and use intuition and I'm the one behind.  It's only in the past few years that I've really begun to pay attention to my intuitive self.  And paying attention doesn't mean I actually follow what I hear.

I hurriedly moved on but this stayed with me. First I was struck by the language. I didn't know whether to be happy or dismayed. At least the general public is being exposed to the phrase 'intuitive system' as I suspect many folks walk through life unfamiliar with their bodies own personal intuitive system be it a gut feeling or inner voice.  Maybe I should be pleased an appliance can be intuitive.

Then a random sci-fi thought zipped through my mind - What if machines become intuitive and ultimately save the day? This particular machine had the built-in capacity to 'listen' to my clothing.  What if machines continue to develop this capacity to listen and use intuition while humans don't?

I made the above notes then tucked this little musing away but the greater mystery in my life made sure my intuition wasn’t going away.  Within a couple of weeks, I noticed a billboard for the Nissan Rogue on a Nashville interstate. The Rogue has intuitive all wheel drive.  The same week I got something in the mail from a retirement program with intuitive investing and then just last week I learned my new computer protection program has an intuitive component.

The emergence of the word intuition is especially interesting given the fact that so many women have through history suffered greatly for their intuition at the hands of the patriarchy.  Women here and abroad were labeled witches and burned at the stake, stoned and drowned because they were intuitiveIf we fast forward a few hundred years, it’s not been that long ago that women were called ‘crazy’ and medicated (and still are at times) for intuition expressed or repressed.

Much of my life I’ve not been a role model for following my intuition.  I was recently  telling someone about being told in a random moment to “Learn French.”  There wasn’t another person in the room who said “Learn French” and it wasn’t my own voice, but as sure as I’m sitting here I heard someone inside me yet not inside me say the words, “Learn French.”  I made a note of this but didn’t learn French.  Months later an intuitive friend said to me, “Dawn, I’m being told to tell you to learn French.”  She didn’t know why other than that’s what she was being told to tell me.  Then months after that a neighbor one morning came running from her house as I walked past and called out, “Hey I’ve been meaning to ask you have you ever thought of learning French?”

I may be slow (ie.scared) but this did it.  My neighbor and I enrolled in a five day course and I for a beginner with no foreign language other than Southern under my belt did well.

I thought that was it. I fulfilled the request made of me until the day months later a brochure arrived in the mail, a brochure promoting a trip to France.  It didn’t take three brochures to arrive in the mail although I did sign up at the last minute. The good news is  I went.

My intuitive experiences aren’t always this bold and big.  Most times my intuition arrives subtly and quietly, with little nudgings and sensings that I need to look into something or do something. I don’t know the significance until I do whatever it is I’m sensing I need to do and many times even afterwards I don’t know in the moment why I did what I did.  I do know I'm following bread crumbs or collecting pieces to a larger life puzzle.

Wednesday night was the perfect example. I had known all day I needed to go outside and sit under the moon because it might be raining come Thursday's full moon (and I hadn't checked the weather).  I got on-line instead and spent over an hour reading, sorting and deleting emails.  Ten o'clock neared and I was going to bed when I felt the nudge to go outside.

Instead of overriding the nudge, I put on a jacket, grabbed a towel and lay down on Mother Earth in the middle of my postage stamp sized city yard. As soon as I lay down I felt the vibes of Earth and Moon energy buzzing in my body.  Even now writing of this memory calls up the sight of the moon in the Southern sky and the feeling I had.  I lay there so very grateful I listened and followed rather than ignoring or resisting.

Fear and its kin habit and ignoring try to keep me from following my intuition.  My brain wants to know if I learn French what’s next.

Intuition and the mystery say, “Trust.”

And that is the challenge.  My safety-seeking brain and nervous system like to know what’s next and next and next. If I know what’s next, ten steps out, and know I’m not going to be burned, drowned or hung for doing what’s next then I’ll do what I’m told to do.

Yet this isn’t how Mystery, Spirit and the Divine work at least in my life. And ironically no one kills me but I kill me, who I came here and am called to be if I don’t listen and follow.

As I reflect on the four marketing references to intuition I’ve heard and seen, it’s interesting that although many women have disconnected from their intuitive selves because of the patriarchy’s control, the masses are being exposed to the word intuition through systems (manufacturing, automotive, investing and banking) that have traditionally been male dominated.

It is perfect these four references in the mainstream all speak metaphorically to some aspect of embodying and embracing the journey.  The washer and dryer were referred to as an intuitive system similar to my body’s intuitive system.  The vehicle conjures the image of the path traveled or life's road.  The investing company represents my money earned by how I spend my energy. Will I invest energy in listening on an intuitive level? And my computer’s security system represents how much more really secure I am in terms of freedom from fear when I'm listening intuitively.

When paying attention and listening to my body’s intuitive system and investing my energy on what I sense I’m to do I experience the road traveled with a inner security that can't be taken from me.  

How does intuition arrive in your day?  Do you pay attention and listen or are you more like I've been, uneasy and wanting to know the next ten steps ahead? 

Imagine the Shift of discovering and following your intuitive self!

Meanwhile as for migrating data, the personalizing of storms and the real dirt for what's unfolding on Earth, we are being given an opportunity to WAKE UP, to engage our complete systems our bodies/hearts/souls/minds with the energies in Mother Earth, the animals, plants, trees, stars and one another. 

-Dawn, The Good News Muse, 30 January 2014
first posted 9 March 2012

Monday, January 20, 2014

The Healing Power of Venom - The Year of the Snake Comes to a Close

Upon reading the Chinese Year of the Horse begins Friday January 31st, I was reminded of this still being the Year of the Snake and a vision I had in relation to a snake, a man and a fuchsia heart. 

I was shown the fuchsia face of a man in the stars.  Something about him immediately reminded me of former vice-president Cheney yet I knew it wasn't him.  His face vanished and an elephant's trunk appeared.  It then vanished and was replaced by a huge snake reminiscent of the one in the Harry Potter series.  It crawled into my field of vision in the stars then opened its mouth just like in the movie.

Everything went black.  Then a fuchsia heart shape appeared.  I could feel it pulsing energy to me, feeding and invigorating me, as I spoke what I had seen into my recorder and wondered what all this meant.

I sensed the snake represented the Divine Feminine enveloping the man as the word transmutation came to mind.  Yet I wondered, 'Who was the man?' 

Twenty-days later I came home from being out of town for a week.  I was sorting the mail and newspapers saved for us by a neighbor.  The story and photos on the front page of the Tennessean from two days prior literally took my breath.

There on the cover of our local paper was the man in my vision sitting atop an elephant he had killed.  The story's heading read: "He takes hunting to an extreme."  The reporter told of a local sixty-year old who after a health scare in 1999 decided to hunt "dangerous" animals.  The story referred to animals of course as 'game' but this was no game to me.  This man hunts my children, an elephant and leopard in Zimbabwe, a brown bear in Russia, a hippopotamus, zebra, fox, every deer imaginable and thousands of fowl.

I did not want to read the story.  Even now to write of it brings tears to my eyes.  Yet to avoid it was to neglect the vision and resist listening for its message.

So I read.  And I have read the story again and again this week listening, still listening wanting to discern why this was delivered to me by the Universe and the newspaper man. 

The local hunter invoked God in defending his pastime quoting scripture from Genesis where God told Noah that every moving thing that lived was food for him and his family.  I bet God wants to take that back.  Surely he had no idea Earth would become so overrun with people, people who would crowd out and kill off creation with a hunting arsenal like this mans.

The writer relates how local school children in one village were dismissed from school when the hunter killed the hippopotamus, so they could gather meat for their families from the bed of his truck.  Similarly the elephant fed 100 people in a village for over a month.  I read this yet thought, "Why not use your passion and money to teach these villagers something that would last a lifetime that they could pass on to their children, something that didn't involve killing the endangered animals of God's earth?"

The writer quoted him as saying, "Everything I do, I do to an extreme."

And this is where the story comes around to me - to me, to you possibly, to the snake and the fuchsia heart here in the year of the Snake.

We are here to love to the extreme. 

I knew the afternoon of this vision that I was to follow the example of the snake, to envelope this person whose actions I find unconscionable and disturbing in order to transmute the negative in him as well as myself.  The Snake as a Divine symbol says, "Hold the all of who this man is as well as yourself in Love."

Then earlier this week I came across the latest National Geographic buried beneath a pile of papers.  I had not yet looked at it. I glanced at the cover and saw what I knew was a message for me.  A story headline in the bottom corner read: The Healing Power of Venom.  

My breath was taken.  Immediately I knew what I consider poisonous in this man is here to activate the power of my heart creating a healing venom for him and for me.

If I had to rely on myself alone I could not respond to the Call of this vision.  Yet I nor we do this alone.  The Heart of the Universe that pulsed energy to me, whether you call it God, Great Spirit or Goddess feeds us if we are open to holding the abuses and violations of this world that stem from shame, ignorance, arrogance, greed and self-hate.  

Is there anything more beautiful in this Year of the Snake than transforming the poisons in our world into venom that heals?  Is there anything more beautiful than loving in extreme in this profound way?

-Dawn, The Good News Muse, 15 Feb. 2013 reposted 20 January 2014

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

We're All Divine Inside

As I've read excerpts from Pope Francis' recent messages, I've thought of this story often lately.   Inspired by four year old Ella, who is now thirteen, its essence may be more important today than it was when I originally wrote it.  


I have been a contestant in the Princess Game. No, I’ve not been secretly filming a new reality show.  Ella one of our favorite kids asked us over so we could play her new board game.

I, Snow White, lost repeatedly to Ella and Cinderella, who's also known as Uncle Jerry.
At the evening's end as Cinderella and I prepared to walk home, Ella asked me to come upstairs. At the top of the steps she whispered, “I want you to have my b.”  

Never had a runner up in a contest received such a special gift. Ella had many soft, silky blankets she called b’s but this was one of her first.  It was her favorite.

I may have lost the Princess Game but I floated down the street feeling like a queen, my prize the little worn blanket.
Regardless of the distressing events in the world that day, that night I slept peacefully with the b, symbolic of profound love and trust, at my side.  I was perfectly content b-ing despite my loosing that night.
The next morning, with coffee in one hand and the b in the other, I realized it was covered with pictures of children, children of many cultures. Each tan, brown, white and black baby floated on its own little cloud. Despite their racial differences, each cloud was the same and each child was content. None were looking around comparing to see who had the bigger or better cloud. Then I looked more closely and realized each child on Ella’s b had wings. Each child was an angel.

I wondered, ‘When do we change? When do we start competing and accumulating clouds, thinking one won’t suffice? When do we decide we need bigger and better wings? More importantly, when do we forget our wings altogether?’
It seems we slowly trade our wings for things. We buy the illusion that security can be purchased through the right schools, cars and zip codes while wearing the latest haircuts, clothing and styles. We’ve social security for our later years, security systems for our homes and Homeland Security for our country. Somehow we forget that real security is an inside job

If we remembered regardless of class, color or creed, that everyone is created in God’s image, hunger would be inexcusable and poverty unacceptable. Corporate, political and personal misuse of power would cease. People would be seen from the bottom of our hearts not for their impact on the bottom line. Differences would be embraced rather than used as the basis for wars.
All too often instead of thinking for ourselves and considering the complexities of life, we listen to sound bites, mental fast food, and follow leaders, who seem at times to want us to forget our wings. Labeled and separated into liberal/conservative, rich/poor, educated/ uneducated, black/white, we become vulnerable, more easily controlled and pitted against one another. Left unchecked our attitudes and stereotypes further separate us.

True security isn’t found in possessions or positions, looking like Cinderella or being born a Rockefeller. It doesn’t reside in winning board games or war games, contests or conquests. Nor is it found in turning over our minds to politicians and the media.
Real security comes from remembering that like the winged children on Ella’s blanket, we’re all divine inside. 
 Dawn! the Good News Muse, reposted 8 January 2014

Saturday, January 4, 2014

The Twelve Ways of Christmas - The Eigth Way: Dropping In and Nourishment

When I originally wrote of nourishment, gift giving and holiday cooking were in fully swing. Now the New Years ball has dropped, the pendulum has swung the other way and resolutions have been made about pounds to be dropped.  Yet there is still nourishment to be found and gifts received if we drop, drop-in to what's cooking right now.

For just a moment, drop in, turn your attention inward and be curious as to how you're being fed. 

Is there a particular smell in this moment that's reminiscent of someone familiar in your past?  Look around.  Is there something nearby or out the window that's pleasing to see?  What simple memory can you recall from the holiday that still makes you smile inside?

If none of these work, take a moment to notice how your butt and legs interface with the surface on which you're sitting.  Feel the literal support offered by your chair or the floor under your soles where you stand.  Can you take in even a slight inner sense of being fed support in this simple concrete way?

These questions are related to the 'food group' about which most of us never learn and dropping-in to inner experience.  In terms of the more recent food pyramid, experience in my opinion is the foundation of the pyramid. 

To drop-in and be nourished in this way requires a spirit of receptivity, attentiveness and an awareness of being in our bodies.

These three things can be challenging for me.  Are they for you?  Attentiveness requires that I slow my easily distracted mind down so that I'm in the moment and available to the present.  Receptivity requires that I relinquish control and not be on guard which implies trust - something that for me ebbs and flows.

One particular holiday example of "The Eighth Way" occurred four years ago. December arrived and I was finally addressing a significant lump in my neck.  Fear had caused me to procrastinate having it checked out.  The doctor ordered a biopsy.  I showed up at an area hospital where I was ushered into a curtained area, told to put on a hospital gown and asked if I had a driver.  Excuse me? I thought this would involve a simple pin prick yet I ended up in the gown, laying in a curtained cubicle surrounded by many others awaiting tests and procedures.  With curtains as walls, conversations between families and medical staff were easily heard. Precautions and risks were explained to those whose health was already compromised or at least it sounded this way from some of the comments I overheard.  Compared to those around me I was fine, yet the lump had me scared.

I lay there receptive, open and awaken when suddenly I had an experience of being nourished and fed.

I heard a voice say, "Remember who you are" and as I did I felt myself infused with an energy that felt like great Love.  For someone whose childhood involved fears of illness and certain early death, this was even more remarkable.  I was fed and filled with the energy of Love.  It flowed through me and I easily allowed it to radiate to all around me and throughout the building.

I was nourished and in the flow as Love flowed through me.

Most of my nourishing times haven't been this profound.  I am usually fed in Nature on a sensory level as I smell the lavender and rosemary that grow near my door, watch the leaves on each season's trees, hear birds sing or discover intricacies of bugs I've take for granted previously.

Being with children and those I love nourishes me as does Nashville's symphony and our museums and galleries.  Being around creativity fills and feeds me.

My days go best when I take time each morning to sit or stand and feel myself open and receiving what to me feels like Divine Love and Energy.  Contrary to traditional prayer often involving asking for something, I'm not asking for anything.  I'm mindful of being open. My attention drops in and usually I receive.  This has taken practice and still does.

It takes practice because I often avoid or refuse the Nourishment around me.  I can be easily distracted or overly busy and ignore the experiences available to me and at times I intentionally block them.   

Prior disappointments as well as anticipated hurt or loss affect my ability to receive and be nourished.  My controlling self wants to pick and chose the experiences of which I'll partake.  I want to be selective to try to protect myself from further disappointment.  Ultimately I can't control what I'm offered only my attitude toward it.

My attitude has taken work.  As I've discovered how I am fed by nature, the arts and others, I've discovered deep joy which has revealed another pattern.  Often when I'm nourished and renewed by joy, I have the proverbial rug pulled out from under me.  Joy is replaced by anger and a sense of betrayal.  At times I've felt like I was the brunt of some cosmic joke or a cruel God who wanted to teach me that joy only leads to disappointment and can't be trusted.  Now it feels more like I'm being internally polished when I'm willing to receive the experience I am fed and let it flow through me. 

A simple example of this happened New Year's.  We chose to burn what we were releasing from last year and the year prior.  Not being satisfied with 2012, we had a do-over in 2013.  I read that in both 2012 and 2013 I was releasing self-judgment.  Ironically moments before reading these notes, I told Jerry I was judging myself and feeling like a failure.  I wanted to release self-judgment.  I couldn't believe for three consecutive New Year's I was releasing the same thing.  I got out a simple bowl made by my potter friend Jay. We went outside and lit the small pieces of paper.  The crumpled scraps looked like black roses with fiery edges as they burned.  Their beauty and the beauty of the moment prompted me to hum and feel a new sense of letting go. I felt so different until I heard the crack.  I hoped I had not heard what I thought I heard.  This was a favorite new dish. 

We finished our ritual and I discovered a tiny crack the width of the bowl.  I did not like being fed this experience. It felt anything but nourishing.  This was the third time in a week that joy was suddenly replaced by disappointment.  I railed and cried.  I was angry at God and the Universe over this simple now broken bowl.  Then I walked outside under the stars and everything was suddenly alright.  I realized the bowl might be broken as my heart has been repeatedly broken but my spirit will not be broken.  I was open to the experience and my joy returned. 

Dropping in and developing mindfulness as to how you're nourished and fed has positive, radical implications for oneself and the world.  Tune in to how you are literally fed through the foods you eat.  Do you eat out of true hunger or habit? The next time you reach for something to eat drop in and ask if you're really hungry or wanting to eat to avoid something.  If you're actually hungry, notice first what hunger feels like in your body.  Hunger doesn't kill us yet poor nutrition creates the foundation for many diseases which ultimately benefits pharmaceutical companies. .  Drop in and listen to your body as to what you're literally feeding it.

Drop in and get conscious of what you are psychologically being fed.  The media and those in power hoping to sell us things continually try to feed us through sound and sight bites.  We determine whether we'll eat what they dish out.  The next time you hear or see something in the media stop and ask yourself: From my personal experience does this ring true or correct for me?

Drop in and be nourished by positive energy whether it comes through someone you know, an aspect of Nature or that still small Voice like the one I heard in the hospital four years ago that suddenly filled me with Love's energy.

The Eighth Way of the Season is available year round every moment.  Think about it.  We can drop-in and be nourished by receiving the breath of life automatically each and every moment.

Are you curious?  Are you open?  Give yourself the gift of dropping in to the present moment regularly and pay attention to the ways in which you are nourished and fed. 

-Dawn! The Good News Muse  4 January 2014
Click "Remember Who You Are" to read more about the hospital experience referenced above. 

Thursday, January 2, 2014

The Twelves Ways of Christmas - Way 7: Throwback Thursday (Reflection)

(Over the weekend, I commented to someone that I had the remaining six "Ways of Christmas" outlined and might finish them in January. This is what I wrote but only half-way meant.  I was embarrassed and ashamed that I didn't complete Ways 7 - 12 by December 25th.  I wasn't prepared for the time it was taking to write a story a day for twelve days.  Then I experienced a Christmas disappointment that to many would sound crazy but for me was temporarily devastating.

The remaining half-dozen ways of the season were about to be laid to rest when I read last night that this is the period that was originally part of the Twelve Days of Christmas.  The twelfth day is actually Epiphany, January 6th.  I wasn't over a week late, I was right on time!!!!!  For someone who's often felt like she was missing her life, this was one of the best gifts I could receive.)

So for the Seventh Way of Christmas the Season gave to me Throwback Thursday -also known as Reflection. 

For the longest I thought LOL meant "Love you lots" instead of "Laughing out loud."  I was disappointed to learn people were laughing at me rather than loving me.  When "TB" started showing up, I hadn't a clue what it stood for until I eventually saw Throwback Thursday.

As someone concerned about our diminishing capacity for reflection due to the busyness with which so many live, I should be happy to see throwback's yet I find myself wondering do people stop to consider why they choose particular photos for TB's?  Do they stop to ask why the time or period portrayed means something to them? Do they reflect on the feeling stirred by the photo, of the experience evoked or how they've changed?

Amidst throwing backs popularity, I wonder what new trend will upstage TB's?

Cheekwood tree
On this Throwback Thursday I've been reflecting on the memorable moments and experiences during the holiday.  Initially I wasn't into Christmas.  I thought 2013 might be the first year I didn't have a Christmas tree.  A friend with whom I hadn't spent time in 2-3 years changed that when she invited me to tea at Cheekwood.  The morning she emailed me I had been thinking how I didn't really want a tree. Christmas seemed like a distraction this year.

Our time at Cheekwood the next week prompted me to intentionally consider how I wanted to spend the coming days.   I joyfully decorated our tree and put up wreathes.

Decorating my tree led to another TB or memorable event for me.  I spontaneously called my mother and asked if I could help her finish decorating.  Enroute to where she lives, I called a friend to say I was going to be in town briefly.  Carmen later called to say she was coming to visit.  I made a pot of tea, toasted chocolate bread and the three of us sat in my mother's home sharing stories and most importantly the experience of being together.  The only decorating that got done was when I realized it was 4:00 and I had to be home by 6:00. (Home was 90 miles away.)  Carmen pitched in like she was one of us and my mother's mantel and fireplace were decorated in fifteen minutes.

Other things on my list of "Holiday Throwbacks 2013" include a former neighbor showing up with homemade fruitcake, sitting in the sun hearing Belmont's carillon concert on Christmas Eve and seeing "It's a Wonderful Life" at the Belcourt, hearing a Christmas music potpourri at the Basement,  laughing through two hours of  "A Sanders Family Christmas" thanks to a spontaneous gathering with my mother and aunt, singing for a handful of friends and neighbors while delivering bird seed for a Christmas morning ritual, talking with my three twenty-something nephews and eating homemade chilli in front of an outdoor fire on Christmas Eve. 

The most expensive of these experiences was probably the Belcourt movie at $7.25.  No, I take that back it was my two hours of tea, treats, trees and friendship at Cheekwood and a $19 ticket to the play.  Both of these experiences were well worth the money.

My holiday throwbacks remind me memorable gifts don't have to be exorbitant.  Time and presence are the most memorable gifts to me.

Before the new year arrived, I reflected on my TB's for 2013.  I sat down with a blank sheet of paper and time to see what experiences came to mind.  The first thing that bubbled up was seeing the parking lots of Birchwood, Tennessee filled with cars holding visitors to last January's Sandhill Crane festival.  Tears filled my eyes seeing the hundreds and hundreds of visitors to the festival honoring these amazing birds.  The cranes were bittersweet bookends for my 2013.  One of my final TB's for the year was hearing and seeing close to 2,000 of them flying south in mid-November while I was on the Cumberland Plateau.  They were headed to the Hiwassee Refuge where for the first time in Tennessee they would be hunted.  (Crane hunting season ended New Year's Day.)

Bees at Water's Farm
My list of moments to remember for 2013 included seeing thousands of endangered bats fly from Nickajack Cave, seeing hundreds of honey bees on sunflowers at Water's Farm in late October and monarch butterflies for the first time in my life.

Then there was hiking from the north rim of the Grand Canyon to the south, telling my mother of visions I see in particular one involving her, learning I didn't have breast cancer only a day before she learned she didn't have cancer either, unexpectedly seeing John Lennon's art, thousands of tulips and Bruce Munro's LIGHT at Cheekwood, sharing with Jerry how a work of art at TPAC impacted me as we stood before the piece only to have the artist who I didn't know walk up and share that seeing my reaction to his work had made his night, hearing the great grandchildren of the Von Trapps of "Sound of Music"fame sing and my weeping uncontrollably through one particular song.

Throwbacks take on a depth and often more meaning when time is taken to further reflect.  They suggest something about who we are and even possibly deepening who we can become.  They may also connect to the future - throw forwards into 2014.

I already know my experience with the sandhill cranes continues this year as I make plans to return  to the festival in a couple of weeks. I am trying to keep an open mind though that's challenging since the state wildlife commission voted to hunt them and many of the people I hold dear are not participating in this years event.  I have considered not going to show my disapproval of the committee's action especially since their vote went against public opinion in a major way.  I am going to the refuge because I love the sandhill cranes, not because I approve of what's being done to them.

When I pull back and examine my throwbacks, I realize many of them are connected because they stir joy, a sense of mystery and inspire hope for me.  My email inbox is filled with news stories and petitions related to the assault of chemicals and humankind on creation, butterflies, bees, animals and Mother Earth in general.  My experiences tell me there's another story unfolding and I get to decide which story I'm going to put my attention on.

When I pull back and examine my throwbacks I realize I want to get back to living from a place that's centered and mindful, slow and thoughtful, to a place that feels like home inside me.

Maybe the new trend in 2014 will be throw backs that cause us to pull back and ultimately get back to what's most important in each of our journeys.


Reflection takes time, intention, attention and a spirit of curiosity. 

When you look back over the recent holiday, what moments are your throwback moments? What is it about these moments that gets your attention?  Are they special or disconcerting?  What specifically about these moments do you want to cultivate or change?

What are your throwbacks for 2013?  Can you find a thread (such as community, solitude, art, nature) connecting your TB moments for the year?  Consider one of these moments and ponder how it might be woven into 2014. 
-Dawn, The Good News Muse  2 January 2014