Winter and self-containment

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The lesson, new and fresh and perfectly framed, that I have experienced lately was of a thing called self-containment. It is visual for me, as well as, sensory in the body. I tap more into it when I dance, for example. Self-containment is a space where nothing and no one can access you or affect you to describe it in simple terms, but, of course, it is more than that. It feels wonderful. It is one of those states that bring peace, pleasure, calm and divinity into it. I have known this before in a different way with other things, but this is a new one. Perhaps it is not new but simply another one that has a clear frame, structure, name and vibration. It is soul-centred, but in a very human way and I suspect when in this embodiment of self-containment others around you will get affected and not just that, but they will be able to join in with it in their own way and much easier that through anything else. There is, therefore, huge potential in it for yourself and others around you. I am in love with the feeling of it. It has an orangey/pinkie colour to me like a ball or an egg that has edges, but they are allowing, flexing, moving yet protective. I find that this coming out in winter is very on point and relevant, as what does it mean for us to have a space of our own, a ‘womb-like’ state of ecstasy where we are away from it all yet connected. If we picture winter as our psychic underground space, dark and contained, this comes up in line with that only keeping our connection to our ‘new, birth-like, spring-like’ state alive. It has light in it, sunshine and warmth, but the wisdom of the darkness. We are essentially untouchable once we discover us, as unique us, no one else is like that, nothing else is like that in existence. You are YOU and only YOU. It is original, utterly beautiful and powerful in terms of being a gift towards life. Being able to incorporate this state into our lives, although, I suspect, it does not come up always or willingly, but trust that it will when you need it, can change things. It can slow things down, offer reflection and focus. We could ask for it whenever we feel pushed and pulled and overwhelmed, when things are demanded of us without a thought for whether we are ready to offer. It is that ‘stop’, wrap yourself up in YOU, bring yourself back to the centre, stay there for a bit and decide if you want to come out or not when you decide or not. It is a protective something, a covering, a vessel, a container that we can invoke and settle into it while we figure things out.

Winter is a rich gift. I will not tire of saying it over and over. Things must be dark and quiet and still in order for what needs to be clear and in view to be seen properly, in its naked form, in its broken form, in its expansive form. Like a voice in an expansive space of mountain or a valley, it needs expression, but for that to happen we need ‘the death’ of bubbling life internal and external, we need to see, hear and feel without being overwhelmed.

Image: earthporn.org

The last wish of nature

What does nature want? Presence, heart, connection. It wants to be and it wants to live. It seeks the same things any human would. It is the ‘original’ life, birth-giving entity that we all come from.

The reality is that one day nature is going to die, piece by piece, tree by tree, species by species and knowing that brings immense sorrow to the hearts of those, who love wild and raw places. Human greed and blindness will inevitably bring death to all corners of the Earth. Deep down we know that and it makes anger rise and tears come at the thought of it, but while there’s life there’s hope. While a forest lives we live with it.

Before it is gone it invites us more than ever to spend time with it now. Every day to live in the sacred connection, in love and appreciation. There’s no great teacher than nature or a more loving mother to us all and we owe it to her to be present at every opportunity.

The process resembles a mourning of someone we love deeply that is terminally ill. What nature wants in its counted hours is to have loved ones around, acceptance, love and understanding, silence, warm embrace and loyalty. The death will come at the hands of its children and it is up to us to revel in the beauty, comfort and peace it offers despite the knowing it will one day end.

Watching a girl cry over cut down forest logs today and a stark nakedness of land where forest once stood broke my heart today. Yet, this is so very real and something that happens every day in the world.

I intend to stay with forests, lakes, mountains and peace of it all for as long as it is there as both nature and us all know one day it will end.

We can’t stop the destruction of the cold hand of human greed that will never ever have enough, but what we can stop is joining the ranks of so called ‘progress’, becoming detached, cold, despondent and without hope. We can continue carry love for wild places within us and cultivate gardens all around be it a plot of land or simply a plant on a window seal that one loves dearly.

When I lie on my death bed I will remember the smell of bluebells in spring and wet moss on the forest floor of emerald green and nature breathing and beating in unison with my heart.

Stay connected, remain present and continue loving the dying nature. Every moment counts! Act from the heart!

Naked ‘truths’

  • No one thinks about you as half as you think they do (everyone is pre-occupied with working out their ways around life)
  • Emotions are not the same as thoughts (emotions are more primal and instinctual, therefore more valuable in many respects)
  • Life is not about you (nature is not concerned if you are here or not, it just is)

    If something you desire doesn’t happen it is not meant to be (something better will come long meant just for you)

    Dreams do come true (both dreaming and action are required)

    Worry is a waste of energy (things that not happened yet and mostly unlikely to happen)

    You can do it all. Just need to work out what that ALL is for you (it might be less than you think if you really zoom in on essentials)

    Giving to yourself is far from being selfish (we are all here steering our own boat in search of a meaning, which does include helping and caring for others, but it is not everyone’s purpose)

    Kids are wiser than adults (yet untouched by absurdities of life and living the magic of what life is)

    Nature is the source of all life, all divinity, mystery, science and majesty!

    Have a lovely weekend

    Part of the whole

    When going somewhere beautiful it is overwhelming to think that I am part of it all and not just in a sense of sharing a living space but down to cellular level of things. Do we truly know it? All of the time? It can be grounding to realise where our ‘base’ really is. Nature reflects well just how small we are in the overall picture of life.

    As we grow in consciousness and stand before the grander of nature we suddenly know our place. The way I feel when in front of it all is I feel I don’t know what to do with myself. I want to be here and there and everywhere, which tells me merging with the land is natural. I am already part of everything there is present in nature. Everything is collectively an expression of itself and one another. Life is simply wondrous and fascinating when looked at from outside in, from overall to individual and vice versa. Beauty is in the knowing, relief is in understanding, compassion is in acceptance.

    Learning from the Wheel of the Year

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    Mabon Blessings to everyone on this beautiful early autumnal morning!

    The air today is ever so slightly chilly and I wholeheartedly welcome it. It speaks to me of the time we start  our slow descent into the misty, chilly and dark. Land, weather and personal transformations are beginning. I love the darker part of the year and my functioning is the most optimum between October and April, however, this year things have been different in a way of transforming the last remaining sticking points as far as summer is concerned. I feel I did well and managed to extract a multitude of useful lessons about myself, the world at large, the idea of life-purpose and where and how things fit in.

    The Wheel has turned once again and today is Mabon, the time for harvesting, re-evaluating and giving thanks for all the blessings we have experienced this summer. The summer has been hot, prolonged, dry and often trying. It taught me about withstanding hardships and remaining centred on the heart and present in my life more. I was faced with a quality of tolerance within, which had been invaluable. Just as we wait patiently for the seed to germinate, push through and grow towards its most potential, the summer reflected that to me and I was rewarded with early harvest. Planting happened later this year due to snow and frost in early and late spring, yet things caught up and the heat accelerated growth and made me face things sooner rather than later. I didn’t plant much either consciously, as this year for me is about simplifying and focusing on a few things only, clearing the space for emotional, cognitive and spiritual processing. Bounty came in the summer in small quantities and it felt so good. The message of ‘just enough’ re-enforced the work I start doing back in winter. Another aspect of having enough and sharing with those around you in pleasure and gratitude has always been a blessing. The heat burnt my potatoes, however, earlier in the summer and very quickly dry plants disappeared amidst the blanket of thick weeds, so I had to go on a hunt for produce. That taught me about challenges and things often changing very quickly and being ok with what is presented right in front of us. It is ok to just observe and continue with what we have without necessarily spiralling into judgement, regret and giving up. That clear representation of the quality of observation with tolerance and potential hardship taught me ‘to be with’ yet again and be completely grateful for what we do have rather than focusing on what we think we don’t have. Sensation of that I found very pleasant, releasing and freeing.

    I suffered with pain in my legs and back from early spring and found it challenging, however, I also knew that in order for new transformations to occur this year I had to have something to work with and this was one of those things where I had to look at living with physical pain. I wrote about it earlier this year. Through the summer pain continued and so did my life and that was the lesson of things continuing, moving on, changing, the Wheel turning no matter what and we can either fight and resist it or accept and move with it. The release of my associations with pain transformed hugely this summer and just as looking at dead and not ‘very healthy’ crops amidst the summer heat and as I begin to dig them out with love and attention I began giving myself the same. I aimed to understand, accept things as they are without judgement and wanting anything to be different.

    At the end my harvest was complete pretty much at beginning of August in terms of produce or so I thought… On my return to the plot in September I discovered a few more gems waiting for me and my heart delighted in it. Seeds were hanging ripe on dry stalks representing bounty and potential in the future and underneath dry and covered with weeds stalks there were plump bulbs of goodness. Again, the idea of ‘just enough’ was clearly present and again it felt profoundly satisfying.

    I am yet to dig all my small, but perfectly clean and tasty potatoes out of a patch of land covered with all sorts (treasure hunt-like) and I am taking my time with it applying patience and joy when working on the land. I appreciate everything about it and tend to continue nourishing and nurturing it for years to come. It holds immense lessons for me as seasons change and the Wheel turns every time. Things come and go, start and end and start again and so does our life with all its highs and lows and everything in between. I very much look forward to what the season brings.

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    Summer – the time for wilderness, the time for releasing your beast

    Anger, physicality, sensate expression of instincts, body merging with the earth in its full expression – that’s what June is all about as we are building up to Litha. Swimming, walking barefoot, lying on mountain tops, communing with wildlife, beasts, bugs and plants alike are all the activities that feed the body and awake the soul.

    There’s danger, however, when summer is fully alive in its wilderness. Night and day both carry life within and it can feel unsafe. This resonate with my overwhelm of the forest and feeling apprehensive about venturing out during the explosion of life in the land during summer. I tend to withdraw, hence I like the quietness and sleepiness of winter. It is safer. However, by withdrawing a part of me remains enclosed, hidden and that’s what needs to change this year.

    Wild-self calls and roars pushing boundaries of a self-created seclusion. It needs expressing and breathing with the rhythms of the season.

    A safe place for wild spirit for me is the Highlands of Scotland. There my wild-self is contented, it is allowed to be in its full majesty. It scares me always yet I thirst for it at the same time. There my whole aligns with the wild nature around me. I eagerly drink it into my cells, I merge with it like it is home and my spirit sours into endless skies daily and consumes my whole being with a sense of raw, complete, real and natural. It often manifests with anger, emotional cries and outward expression of raw things. It is unable to hide and sit still. It needs to run, fly, crawl and swim all at the same time. It can feel and look scary and crazy uncontainable and vicious, but it all makes sense and, perhaps, in embracing and allowing that for myself a bit more will also relax others in joining me and not being afraid of a strong bite and a loud screech that it often comes with.

    Summer is truly a time for letting go and letting be. It is a time to fly higher and swimming further. Last summer I remember wanting to go on the water in a kayak and the fear that gripped me was so irrational yet it immobilized me. Someone said to me ‘go for it, we only live once, might as well’ and so I did. The freedom of releasing the urge to glide through vast waters released the excitement I had ever felt before. With each push across the lake I went further and further and with each minute I wanted to do more and more.

    When I am faced with the mountains of the Highlands I can hear the scream within me telling me to run, scream, be in its fullest. The impulse in me to merge with the land is so strong that I know if I don’t I could easily just stagnate and die through my own fear and a loss of the potentially ecstatic experience. It is like choosing to drink poison and staying in a position of never knowing what it’s like to live fully. When I step on that mountain trail my heart and spirit sour, I want to run and cry and scream, the feeling I have of being as one with the land, a place I never want to leave for as long as I live.

    I break my heart every time I have to leave the wilderness behind, because it means my wild-self has to go back into a safe enclosure of my other life, which is managed, contained and often unexciting.