Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Mind is Great. The Heart is Good. (Love as Daily Bread)

(I didn't know as I wrote this that December is Universal Human Rights Month.)

This morning I found myself suddenly thinking of the blessing we said before every meal when I was a child. You may know it. "God is great. God is good. Let us thank him for our food. By his hands, we all are fed. Thank you, God, for daily bread." I quietly repeated the familiar refrain when the following began to grow in my mind. I hurriedly stopped what I was doing and scribbled what came.

"The Mind is great. The Heart is good.
Both gave us wisdom to grow our food.
By corporate hands, many now are fed.
May we return to Love for our daily bread."

Minds in the Industrial Age envisioned and created machinery, machinery that ultimately gave us the capacity to feed millions. We feed millions and we overfeed ourselves; yet many die of hunger.

Scientific minds then created chemicals, chemicals that allow foods to remain on store and cupboard shelves for months. These chemicals, made I suspect with good intent, and the resulting processing of food not only diminish the life in food but may be related to the rise of certain diseases in our time.

How is it that we slowly turned our nourishment over to scientists, inventors, agribusiness and corporate America? What will our legacy be to future generations as they look back on our times? Will we be known for our technological leaps in making wireless connections yet miss the connections inside our own bodies?

Our minds are still great and our hearts still good.

May we remember the wisdom that resides in our bodies, in both heart and mind, so that our age will be known as a time in which humankind reconnected internally as well as externally. May our age be known for returning awareness as to how we are nourished by Earth. May we remember how to really nourish ourselves and one another and not be satisfied until every person on this dear planet has enough literal daily bread born of the bread of love.
-Dawn! The Good News Muse, 30 Nov. 2010

Friday, November 19, 2010

Mystery & The Mystery

"We are living a mystery. Hopefully we are not too busy to miss the vital clues."
-Merlin in "Return to Merlin" by Depak Chopra

Lately I've noticed the parallels between Mystery, our calico cat, and the Mystery that is life.

For example, Mystery is insatiable. The only thing she loves better than food is lovingly getting attention. Likewise, life's Mystery is hungry for experience. It wants to be lovingly attended and fed through us as we open ourselves to new experiences in life.

Mystery knows how to relax. Likewise the Mystery that is life calls to us, "Relax" for when we're relaxed we're more tuned in to what really matters each day.

Although she likes attention, Mystery does not like to be held. She wants to explore. To be held is to be confined. The Mystery that is life cannot be held. If anything, it holds us. It moves freely in our lives aware that when we try to confine its energy a part of us dies.

Recently Mystery sat looking at me as I said, "Thank you for keeping my heart open." (Mystery came along only two weeks after my cat of 18 years died, as my hurt heart was closing.) The Mystery when we allow it arrives to keep our hearts open often as we're wanting to close them.

Mystery especially on cold nights will lie on the bed between us. Likewise after all these years it's easy to think or assume I know my partner as he knows me. The truth is the Mystery lies between us, it is the rich Unknown waiting to be ventured into, waiting to be lived.

Mystery is primarily black with patches of yellow and white. The Mystery of life resides in the dark matter of quantum energy. We miss Mystery when we think of darkness as frightening or negative. The dark is space that has yet to experience light.

"Imagine the Shift" in your day as you become curious as to how Mystery is showing up or trying to arrive in your life.
-Dawn! The Good News Muse, 19 Nov. 2010

Thursday, November 18, 2010

To Ian...

For a time every morning during my walk, I periodically meet a young man decades my junior with an artistic gentle feel.

After passing each other two consecutive days, I determined on the third to introduce myself and ask his name. Ian was walking to the bus stop for work downtown. He had graduated from my alma mater earlier this spring. We talked. Ian said he would like to continue to live in the neighborhood prompting me to share how I had lived in the village since '77 thanks to a series of synchronicities.

We got to end of the block, our fork in the road, prompting our separate ways. Ian walked up the hill, the scenic way to the bus stop as I wanted to call out, "Wait, I talked too much."

I walked home wishing I had inquired more of him, this kindred spirit who preferred the serene yet uphill path to the bus stop over the traffic-lined one.

The above meeting was two weeks ago. I've not seen Ian since. I was away for a week then it turned cold.

Today I walked along pondering Ian. What was I really trying to say with all my sharing?

"Ian, allow yourself to really desire, to really want something in life, then
stay awake, pay attention to the signs and clues. Spirit or the Mystery has
a way of sprinkling them before us and from this a rich life flows."

I smile for I thirty years later am reminding myself of this too.
-Dawn, the Good News Muse, 18 November 2010
Contact: dawn@imaginetheshift.com

Monday, November 15, 2010

The Tree, The Heart & the Hand of Mystery

I've passed this tree hundreds of times in the last fifteen years most always noticing the heart in its trunk.

It was only recently that I walked up close to stop and really see. The heart, mostly dark and charred probably struck by lightning, is bordered by what resembles two snakes, the guardians of treasure and sacred places in myth and story.

Reaching from the depths is a tiny hand of stubby bark-like fingers. The day I took this photo, the hand reached from a spider web as one finger pointed at me.

This day I also notice a yellow ribbon around the tree, not a statement of longing that a loved one at war return home, but a sign that the tree has been marked for extinction or trimming by power line crews.

The little bark hand reminds me of the heart, one's personal heart as well as the heart of the world and how they often reach for one another through strangers, family and events, often dark times, moving us to greater compassion.

The little hand beckons me to come sit in the darkness and learn rather than fear for in the darkness lives Mystery, the Unknown. In the depths, Wisdom waits.

I recall telling God after a traumatic speaking event in fifth grade that I would go to Africa, the Dark Continent, and do anything asked of me as long as I never had to speak in front of people ever again.

Much later in adult life, I suspected that instead of traveling to some far off country, my greatest mission was to go into the unknown regions of my personal Dark Continent, my unexplored heart-the sacred place inside of me.

Today I see this dark heart with the tiny hand emerging from the spider's web, calling me into the Unknown, to engage with the Mystery of these times and the Mystery that is my life. It is the hand calling me to have courage, the courage to enter my own dark insides and discern how they are connected to the greater web of life.

As for the yellow ribbon, I do not know the fate of this tree, but I do know it reaches out for us to come home for we are the ones who have been away. It reaches out for us to come home to who we really are so Love will not become extinct.

How do you experience or think of Mystery in your own life? How does the heart of the world speak to your heart? How do you consider your connection to the greater web of life?

Imagine the Shift if you allowed yourself to be called by the Mystery to an aspect of your own journey that you've avoided or set aside.
-Dawn! The Good News Muse, 15 November 2010

P.S. Later in the week, I met the man in whose yard the tree stands. Seeing my camera, he offered to take my photo and shared as well how he and his wife had already saved the tree from power line crews once. The energy of this couple balances those who raze trees seemingly thoughtlessly not appreciating their beauty or the fact that trees are the earth's lungs taking our CO2 and in turn giving off the Oxygen we need to breath.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

A Report from the Wilds (of the Bathroom)

Dawn here, reporting from the bathroom where wildness just passed through. (No, not that kind of wildness.) The essence of wildness passed through me as Jerry showered. (Not that wildness either.) I erupted into a spontaneous cheer as he prepared for something new.

How often do you get cheered? How often do you get to hear someone clapping while spelling aloud your name followed by rounds of "You can do it."

In these times when folks more easily jeer than cheer, encouragement is medicine. Mood shifting and mind lifting without negative side effects. (Okay so folks may judge me. That's negative energy though for them, not me.)

I wonder how wildness will try to flow through you today?
-Dawn! The Cheering Good News Muse, 13 November 2010

For the prior story related to Wildness just go to the story that follows: "Men on Mowers" dated Nov. 12. For the Cheerleading Trilogy click on 2009 in the column to the right and go to October 31 . I'll continue to try to link stories. For now, I've wilder things to do.

For the trilogy inspired by Lily! and Halloween last year click HERE
Followed by "To Pee or Not to Have Peed" HERE
and "Costumes, the Betrayal of Portrayal of Essence" Click HERE

Friday, November 12, 2010

Men on Mowers & Mirrors- A Musing on Wildness

"We need the tonic of wildness. We can never have enough of nature." -Thoreau

What is it with me and men on mowers? No, they don't excite me like some modern day version of cowboys on horses. They incite me. Earlier this week while driving down the interstate, I noticed two men on mowers. Well one was on a mower and the other watched as man #1 mowed a swath of tall, swaying grass, grass formerly known as goldenrod, now arrayed in Fall's muted tans, browns and rusts.

I reminded myself that the man mowing has a job as does the watcher. That each of them will be able to feed and clothe their families because my tax dollars support this.

It is not my job to judge. Being outside on a mower may be their tonic as Thoreau referenced, but can't we come up with something other for men to do than chop down wild and growing things?

This pushes my buttons similar to people who mow weekly in summer not because their yard needs it but because it's part of some task list encoded in our cultural DNA from decades past when advertisers told us we needed well groomed yards (groomed of course by their mowers).
This summer I felt such tension as neighbors mowed dirt. Dust clouds swirled around them as they rode the range that is their yard and I kept my mouth shut.

Both instances push my buttons because I love wildness. There's a freedom in the energy of wildness that ironically, here in the "Land of the Free" we try to squash, contain and control.

How is it that we tame wildness whether it's in our yards or in children? Our educational system is considered successful if we turn unruly (spirited) children into good (well-behaved) ones.

Wildness is where inspiration, creativity and spirit lie yet we relegate it to Animal Planet or a stuffed head on a wall, to reality shows where folks compete to survive in the 'wild' or videos of coeds at the beach on Spring Break known as girls gone wild.

I'm reminded of learning in France that the grand cathedrals were usually built over natural springs, springs where people worshiped Spirit as the Goddess in nature. Thus began the containing of the wild as the patriarchy separated people from nature. The church got its money as the people were controlled and yes often educated intellectually by the church, learning to read and write, but disconnected from the education that comes from nature and being in our bodies and not just in our minds. The energy of wildness did not die.

For now what I know in the wild ramblings of my mind is men on mowers mirror the part of me, my own energetic wildness, that I sensed was chopped down in childhood. Men on mowers remind me of how in turn even now I control wildness in myself when I forgo coloring a strand of hair fuchsia or turquoise out of concern for what others will think.

Yet I also recall times when imbibing of the tonic in nature or oddly while shopping awakens my insides, stirring that energy of old. Memories of the tonic of wildness make me smile as I recall rolling down a grassy slope not that long ago, dancing to my favorite band not caring what others think or buying not one but two halter tops for my fifty year old body or just this Fall laying in the bottom of the Grand Canyon naked in the Colorado River.

I don't know about you, but I need, I want, I desire the tonic of wildness to help me remember who I fully am. I want to drink daily from the tonic of wildness to keep the energy flowing in the Land of the Free that is inside of Me!

Imagine the Shift if you did one wild thing today. What would it be?
-Dawn! The Good News Muse 12 November 2010

Monday, November 8, 2010

Witnessing & Remembering - Nature Leads Us Home

Enjoy three small stories and a video inspired by Nature reminding us that contrary to the saying, "You can never go home", we can return to the home within over and over again.

A butterfly floats past.
A brave butterfly at October's end.
The sun sinks out of site
Today will never be again.
As I hurry through the kitchen I spot a tiny praying mantis like bug, the size of child's fingernail perched on the heart shaped woven basket, a beautiful basket made in Linden, not far down the road, my hometown.

I take this tiny being and place it outside or at least I try. It refuses to crawl off my hand.
We come back in.

I ask it where it wants to go and hear: "With you. I want to be with your heart."
This could be a problem. I'm headed for the car.

Then I realize it needs to go to the area of our yard where we buried Templeton.

I place my hand on the Earth in front of a grave marker and this once hesitant creature quickly crawls away.

This Summer we witnessed the launching of six or seven baby wrens. We lost count somewhere between the three on Saturday evening just prior to dusk and three or four more on Sunday morning. (We questioned our count after seeing one bird leave the nest and then return.)

Throughout Saturday afternoon, the wren parents perched in trees and props throughout the yard while loudly calling coaxing the children to come out.

Each fledgling in a test flight of sorts fluttered from the nest to the deck which then served as a runway to freedom. One landed by the flat metal squirrel then looked up as if to say, "The world's no longer flat, you know." Like today's kids who arrive exquisitely alive and ready to fly, they know what adults forget. We are multi-dimensional.

Each wren until the last one used the deck as a runway. The last one was the one that left and then returned. The second time out, it flew between the rails and was suddenly air born toward a nearby Japanese Maple.

I caught its flight with my camera. While doing so, I wondered if wren was yet another of the words deleted from the latest version of the Oxford Jr. Dictionary. I checked and found my suspicion correct.

Why would anyone omit wren?

For now rather than allowing this to spin in my head, I choose to remember wren, wren sharing its pre-flight chirps followed by flight for I want to fly. I want to always be inspired by birds in flight, bugs on the ground, sun in the sky. I want to remember we can fly and yes, we can always return home, to home deep within.

For this we long.
To feel at home.
The butterfly, the sun, the bug, the wren.
Flying, setting, crawling, flying away again.
Showing us the way.

Here's fourteen seconds of flight for you, for me and for the world that is here to be. Enjoy... and click HERE for the original story about the children's dictionary that's deleted 10,000 words many related to what they call Old Nature.- Dawn! The Good News Muse, 8 November 2010

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Nature's Texting - The Animals in the Rocks

My mother first taught me to see animals in things. Nearly three years ago as she lay in a hospital bed, awaiting her second surgery in six months, we watched tv. Actually the only channel we watched showed a steady stream of landscape images, images of flowers, rocks and trees. At first I didn't see them. She'd say, "See that bear in the rock" or "Look there's a cat" and I'd quietly chalk her creative visions up to one of the drugs she was taking. As I softened my focus and quit trying so hard, I too began to see them. It was a beautiful thing, my mother and I there in her hospital room in a vulnerable time finding animals emerging from nature unexpectedly.

Today I found a dolphin's meditative face in landlocked TN (in a rock of course). Last month I saw a fox.
How many treasures are hidden in Nature awaiting those who see?
- Dawn! The Good News Muse, 2 Nov. 2010

Nature's Texting - Young People and Trees

(Today, Nov. 2nd, I intentionally opted out of watching tv and instead opted for hiking.)

The photo doesn't clearly show it, but many of the older trees along this trail have been felled by a storm since I was last here. I was initially disappointed until I realized sprinkled all around me were young evergreens of various sizes. reminding me of the young ones coming up behind us.

The young ones, the youth, so many, so loving, so honest and wise. Knowing they are out there allows me to more easily embrace the shifts of today. =Dawn! The Good News Muse - 2 Nov. 2010