Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Archetypal Astrology


Ah, it's another  hot one here in the city.  August 31, the last day of the month...and temps are heading up into the 90's....another heat wave.  Enough already. It's been a long....and very, very hot summer.  Time for a break. I mean, here I am taking vacation next week and planning to go shopping for some new fall clothes...How can you even think of it in the midst of a heat wave?  I'd planned on taking a trek to Barnes @ Noble as well, but just happened to see they had reprinted one of my all-time favorites..."Through the Looking Glass."  It's an astrology book on which features Jungian psychology and myth.  And, being that I lost it somewhere down the line...and the little Barnes @ Noble I shop in doesn't have it, I ordered a bunch of stuff online. 

As most of you already know my four favorite subjects of my favorite subjects are Jung, archetypes, mythology, and astrology...and when I find them all combined in a subject, I am in 'seventh heaven'.  I started out with traditional astrology, but found that, after time, I began to veer more towards archetypal astrology...a merging of all of the above.  Two of my favorite astrological authors are Liz Greene and Demetra George; I have every one of their books...and you don't have to know about astrology to understand and love what they have to say.

I can get lost in the world of myth which is, when you really give it some thought, the voice of our ancestors. Because they did not know how to explain the world about them, they created myths to tell their history and to explain their beliefs. The telling of stories is the way they passed on their knowledge...from one generation to the next. These stories tell us so much about how  our ancestors saw the world and gave meaning to their lives. These ancient myths live on in our culture; they represent forces in our psyche and in our world.

Each sign of the zodiac as well as each of the planets is associated with a particular Divine character who may appear in different guises with different names, but their symbolic meaning has the same roots...an archetypal layer which is common to all of us.  For example, the themes The Hero's against evil or The Great Mother appear in all of our lives as we struggle to achieve our inner development.  Hence, by overcoming what is threatening to destroy us....whether it is coming from our inner self or from others in our surroundings, working with these archetypal patterns gives us an opportunity for growth.

As a matter of fact, what better place to begin than the Mercury archetype who has been giving so many of us trouble these past few days as he continues his retrograde travels.  I am not even going to get into what happened this morning... Oh well, you talked me into it.  My latest addiction is fruit smoothies from MacDonald's.  I have one for breakfast every day and MacDonald's is the only place I can buy one.  So, I go in there this morning, wait in a line that never seemed to move, only to get to the register and find out they were cleaning the machine.  Well, this is not the first time it happened, and I am sorry, but my feelings are if a store is open 24 hours a day, why not clean the machine in the middle of the night, not rush hour when people are trying to get to work...and, of course, I had to voice my opinion on the matter.

Then, I get to work.  The elevator is out.  Okay, it's bad enough to have to climb the three flights with my bum knees, but when I finally stagger to my floor, I find the fire doors are locked, and I don't have a key.  No one does.  The maintenance man has to take the whole door off the hinges. Takes a half hour. It's hot in the stairwell; I'm sweaty, the noise of his hammering is deafening, but I am NOT going to go back downstairs because I will only have to trudge up those steps again.  Finally in...put breakfast out for the clients, put breakfast away, run women's group; start doing group note and am called by receptionist that I have two intakes and three clients waiting to see me. Old Mercury continues to chip away at my sanity. And actually, I am finally here.  Didn't think I would even find the time or energy to post today.



HHermes or Mercury is one of the great Archetypal Energies of our World. His energies and insights, as with all the other archetypes, are available even in today's society. This is a recognition that our thoughts (Mercury) ultimately come to us from the archetypal realm (“the gods”). Mercury is the messenger who translates these archetypal meanings and impulses into our particular mental language; most of the time he does this so perfectly that we usually believe we are creating the thoughts ourselves.


As an archetype, he is both the messenger and the magician. Mercury is associated with the Greek mythic figure of Hermes, the Roman Mercury, the messenger of the gods.  Hermes was the god of communication and also the god of thieves.  He 
is the trickster, an archetype with both positive and negative expressions. As a god of the Underworld, he  was able to travel back and forth between the underworld of Pluto and the upper world of gods and mortals. Thus, Mercury is a planet which allows us to traverse levels of consciousness and experience, to be a messenger within or without.

For a free chart and to find where your Mercury is go to:  Astrolabe 

Monday, August 30, 2010

Mercury Retrograde...A Rant


During the last Mercury retrograde, so many of my acquaintances were complaining that everything was going wrong....and, I would smugly smile and say, "It hasn't touched me."   Well, remind me to be a little more sympathetic to those poor souls the next time around because this weekend, Mercury Retrograde hit me...and hit me hard.  Why, it got so bad on Sunday afternoon that I just about broke down and cried. 

The madness all started on Friday evening when I picked up the phone to order our food (we order out on Friday) and discovered there was no dial tone.  Now, the phone had been acting up for awhile, so I just assumed that after 8 years, it had finally died out.  I wasn't so upset because hubby finally got himself a cell phone so when he got home, I'd be able to call and place the order.  Wrong!!!!  Hubby forgot his cell phone at work. Okay, so now son comes home and saves the day.  He, too, has a cell phone. (I'm the only one who doesn't).

But he was going out later...and he was taking his phone with him.  Funny how it is...You never use the phone, but when it's not there, suddenly it's like you lost your best friend. Right away my old pessimistic mind went to work overtime with the what if's.  Suppose one of us gets sick in the night, or my son has some sort of emergency. Enough what-if's to keep me tossing and turning all night.Here we are cut off from the world.  You can imagine my relief when hubby left early Saturday morning to go get us a new phone.

Guess what???  It didn't work. No line the message said.  Oh no, now what?  I'm not on vacation until next week.  I can't take off this week to wait for Verizon and can't go a week without a phone. All right, so next week on vacation I had planned to do some sorting and getting rid of, so I will just start a little early.  See, the phone jack is behind the boxes and boxes of storage in my son's room  Before he moved back home that had become my storage room, and to be honest, I don't have any other place to put it so it remains there...but I have planned to sort and toss...After all, there is no way I will get back in a size 10 so why keep hanging on when there is someone out there who can use it?

Okay, so I move everything out and find the problem.  It's the jack.  My cat has been hanging out there lately and somehow pulled it out....so I have a phone.  Yippee!!!  But then, I go to the living room and turn the cable on to prop my feet up and watch some television...and the darned thing started rebooting itself....over and over again. Wouldn't stop. I began having nightmarish flashbacks of that foul-natured cable guy I had the last time.  I tried unplugging it for a few minutes as they always tell you to do...no good, still rebooting.  Now, I am almost ready to cry.  Most of you know I am a full-fledged couch potato...and visions of missing the last show of the season of my favorite shows were flashing through my head. So now, because it won't stop rebooting, I unplug it and leave it unplugged...heading into the computer room to see if there is anyway I can see my shows on it.

Just then my son calls me.  Be careful when you set your coffee.  Now, I am one of those people who have to have my morning coffee waiting for me when I wake up....if not, the entire house hears my tirade...so I can imagine my son was trying to avoid being woken several hours too early.  It seems the clock had somehow been been set back an hour.  Did we have a power outage that I didn't know about?  Now, as I go to press the little buttons to reset the timer, they won't budge...but have no fear...a little dash of this miracle oil does the trick.  Then, I figure one last try with the cable, so I plug it in....an lo and behold...it's working. Whew!!!! All I can say is, miracles happen.

If you have any interest in astrology, know and astrologer, or simply read the astrology sites on the web, you know what a Mercury Retrograde is...the most commonly known astrological signature for Murphy's Law--"If something can go wrong, it will". Computers crash, software develops unexpected glitches, communications go awry, traffic jams ensue, things are lost, found, then lost again, letters get lost on the mail, machinery breaks down, delays interrupt the normal flow of things. Ah, yes, the trickster Mercury is up to his old pranks again. In fact, at least three times a year for about three weeks each time Mercury has his way with us.

The key issue here is one of focus. Catch up on things you've been putting off, finish up old projects, and take some time for closure with the things in your life that have recently ended. Do what anyone does when they take a breather ― relax, regroup, recharge and reconsider your plan of action.

Mercury's retrograde phase tends to bring unforeseen changes and blockages our way, but the aggravation and frustration that many of us experience during these periods is often due to our own inability to roll with the punches.  It is also important not to assume that the other person is "on the same page" with you. Remember that mis-communications are very common at this time, and what you say may not be exactly what the other person hears.  Double check everything, and I mean everything...and be sure to double check it twice.  My cable box episode is a great example of stepping back and taking a few deep breaths...although that wasn't exactly what I did. Just be prepared for surprises and delays and stay flexible as much as possible.  It will all soon be over...September 12th to be exact.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Gratitude


Be grateful for the kindly friends that walk along your way; 
Be grateful for the skies of blue that smile from day to day; 
Be grateful for the health you own, the work you find to do, 
For round about you there are men less fortunate than you.


Be grateful for the growing trees, the roses soon to bloom,
The tenderness of kindly hearts that shared your days of gloom;
Be grateful for the morning dew, the grass beneath your feet,
The soft caresses of your babes and all their laughter sweet.

Acquire the grateful habit, learn to see how blest you are,
How much there is to gladden life, how little life to mar!
And what if rain shall fall today and you with grief are sad;
Be grateful that you can recall the joys that you have had.

--Edgar Guest--

Gratitude is so often lacking in our modern world. Each day blessings come to us that make our life better in some way. We've grown accustomed to expecting so much, but feel we owe nothing in return. We live in an 'entitled' society, and for many, being thankful is one of the hardest things to express, but gratitude is not simply something that we externally share with others. Indeed, gratitude is an attitude that we live with every day. Some of the unhappiest people I’ve met in my life have also been the most ungrateful. 

We don't have to be rich to in order to be grateful, and by all means, you most certainly   don't need have to have a lot of trinkets and other things.They are only material things. Objects.  What counts is what is inside. Appreciation of the earth, the water, the plants, and the animals; that is what helps us live fuller and more aware lives.Being grateful...It is so important that we show our gratitude to Mother Nature for all of Her gifts, and the first step to doing this is to begin taking care of Her. This web of life is like a Great circle with all things equally important...the circle of giving and receiving; the circles of nature that surround and support us... the earth, sun, moon, seasons, day and night and the all of the cycles that make up life. 

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity…. It turns problems into gifts, failures into success, the unexpected into perfect timing, and mistakes into important events. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.”

--Melodie Beattie--


                                  

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Autumn Dreams


"Autumn arrives in the early morning,
but spring at the close of a winter day."

  --Elizabeth Bowen--

They say it will be heading up into the 90's throughout the following week, but I can deal with it because Autumn is now on its way; the signs are there...The days are growing shorter as the light gradually gives way to the darkness;....and those cold, crisp nights when the air has a special chill to it.  Autumn, beautiful, beautiful autumn....some of us call it fall, a name which is believed to have originated  because it is the time of the year that the leaves fall to the ground, but actually it is called 'fall' because this is the season when the sun falls below the equator....only to 'spring' back six months later.  

This is such a wonderful time of the year.  I've always loved this season with its days of delightful color and myriad of changes. Remember when we were children?

...the first day of school, new outfit, new shoes...new crayons, pencils, book bags, new books...an apple freshly picked from the tree for the teacher...new friends and old friends back in our lives again....

...the land abounds with a glorious spectrum of shades of crimson, orange, golds, and yellows...mottled leaves with several colors in transition....

 ...raking and gleefully jumping into mountains of leaves...gathering together to watch the blazing piles...the scent of the burning leaves...the smoke....laughter...

...the bounty of the earth is harvested...pickling, canning, drying...nibbling while you work...pumpkins, Indian corn...and apples picked from the tree...lots and lots of red juicy apples...cornucopia...

...the hazy, cloudless skies of Indian Summer...the last warmth of the summer....but don't go near the water....

We may be older now, but we can still enjoy the trees and the crisp, crunchy leaves around us...we can savor the brisk morning air and relish the healthy redness on our cheeks.  It'll soon be time for the cozy sweaters, the hats...the gloves...winding down for the season of rest. Tis a beautiful season...indeed.  Autumn, beautiful autumn.

"I know the year is dying,
Soon the summer will be dead.
I can trace it in the flying
Of the black crows overhead;
I can hear it in the rustle
Of the dead leaves as I pass,
And the south wind's plaintive sighing
Through the dry and withered grass.

Ah, 'tis then I love to wander,
Wander idly and alone,
Listening to the solemn music
Of sweet nature's undertone;
Wrapt in thoughts I cannot utter,
Dreams my tongue cannot express,
Dreams that match the autumn's sadness
In their longing tenderness."
-  Mortimer Crane Brown, Autumn Dreams -


Friday, August 27, 2010

Colors of the Rainbow



The colors of the rainbow so pretty in the sky
Are also on the faces of people goin' by
I see friends shaking hands saying, "How do you do"
They're really saying "I love you."

I hear babies cry, I watch then grow
They'll learn much more than I'll ever know;
And I think to myself, What a wonderful world;
Yes, I think to myself, What a wonderful world.
Oh yeah!

--  Louis Armstrong--

To bad we are always in such a hurry. I used to love the hustle and bustle, and could keep up with the best of them, but we end up missing out on so much in life. Here in the city, everyone is always hustling and bustling to get where they need to go; then they complain about all the stress in their day and that have no time to go to relax.  Early fast-paced mornings, quick breakfasts or just a cup of coffee, and out the door to work. Then there are those frustrating, congested commutes to and from the work place. Stressful working conditions with people that we never take time to get to know.  Fortunately, as dysfunctional as my co-workers might be, we know each other well...all our little idiosyncrasies...and I am just as bad as the rest.  We all have our little quirks.  

   
Life in the city is often measured by our material acquisitions. We are so busy looking for the 'pot of gold' that we forget to look at the rainbow.  I was never so materialistic that I couldn't appreciate my surroundings, but, my goodness, I sure did know how to keep the pace up with the rest of them.  Hubby hated to go shopping with me, and I can count the fingers on one hand the times he attempted to accompany me.  I just didn't know how to slow up; there was just too much to do, too much I wanted to do.  But, there comes a time in everyone's life where the mind may be in a hurry, but the body just won't keep up with it...and that's not always a bad thing; in fact, for me it was a blessing.

Slowing up has allowed me to appreciate the beauty of the world around me...to take time to smell the roses, to the cool breeze upon my face, to cherish those breathtaking sunsets with their brilliant hues of orange and violet, snowy white clouds and a clear blue sky....the moon in all Her glory.  These are some of the things we miss when we move too quickly through life.  We must stop running....and start paying attention.

"Sometimes it's important to work for that pot of gold.  But other times it's essential to take time off and to make sure that your most important decision in the day simply consists of choosing which color to slide down on the rainbow." --Douglas Pagels, These Are the Gifts I'd Like to Give to You



Thursday, August 26, 2010

Time

An amazing thing has happened this week.  Time has slowed down.  My days at work have been so excruciatingly long; at times it is as if time has stood still.  I know, I should be happy about it.  After all, time HAS been speeding by so quickly, but why at work?  Why not when I am at home relaxing?  Why not the weekend? 

Time is the coin of your life.  It is the only coin you have, and only you can determine how it will be spent.  Be careful lest you let other people spend it for you.--Carl Sandburg

Time.  Such a precious commodity, isn't it?  It is through time that we are able to perceive motion...past, present, and future....linear and sequential in its progression. The cycle of our lives revolves around the sun...as it rises and sets.  To our ancestors, time was cyclic; they observed the cyclic nature of the day and night, similar repeating pattern of seasons year after year; monthly cycles of moon's change of form etc.  

Everything revolves around time.  Think about all of the things we do with time:

  • We have the 'time' of our lives.
  • We make some 'time'. 
  • We waste 'time'
  • We wish we had more 'time'.
  • We spend 'time' with our loved ones.
  • We budget our 'time'.
  • We take our 'time' when we are not in a hurry.
  • We plan how to use our 'time'.
  • We say that this is not the right 'time'.
  • We say that 'time' is money."

And, always at the heart of it, we are using our 'time' to do things. Every moment of our time is like a flowing river...forever moving forward.  And, this passage of time is experienced differently within the human consciousness. Remember the long, lazy days of summer when you were a kid?  Or how a school year could seemingly drag on forever in endless mind-numbing torture as we awaited our summer vacation?   When we are children, time seem so very long; it moved in slow motion as endless years stretched ahead for us.  Waiting for the holidays seemed like an eternity for us...but life sails by much more quickly than we expect it to....and as we grow older, it feels as if the holidays were over before they were even here.  As an adult, on the other hand, many of us can only shake our heads at how quickly the days and weeks and seasons seem to fly by. An entire year, or even five or 10 years, can pass, seemingly, in a blur. 

Have you ever noticed how time seems to fly when we're having fun, but really drags when we're waiting for the clock to hit 5 pm  on a Friday afternoon. And speaking of clocks...try staring at a clock and waiting for a minute to pass...or wait for a boring commercial to end and your favorite show to come back on. Sometimes, when I awaken a bit too early in the morn, I tend to watch the clock to make the time go slower. Yes,these are our short term experiences with time, but what of longer periods of time such as years?  Our perceptions of time change as the years pass, and by our middle years, at least, most of us have become aware that time has been playing tricks on us...that a very slow but profound change has been sneaking up on us: the years that formerly crawled now seem to be racing by?

Ticking away the moments that make up a dull day
You fritter and waste the hours in an offhand way.
...You are young and life is long and there is time to kill today
And then one day you find ten years have got behind you.
...Every year is getting shorter; never seem to find the time...
-- "Time" from The Dark Side of the Moon: Pink Floyd--


Whatever happened to the long, leisurely summers we knew as children?  Where have they gone?  It seemed forever to get through through the third grade; so, what happened to last year? Why do we now seem so rushed by life?  Where are all the things we wanted to accomplish, but never seemed to find the time for?

Perhaps it is because we never made the time...but it is not too late.


And so, as we grow older, and time speeds us, we must learn to live each day must be to its fullest, for we shall never be able to recapture it again.  The memories we create today can enrich the present and even future years.  We all want to fully enjoy life.  There is really no time but the now.  
 
Old Time, that greatest and longest established spinner of all!.... his factory is a secret place, his work is noiseless, and his hands are mutes.  ~Charles Dickens

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Ho'onopono


Rain, rain, beautiful rain.  This is the third day we've had some rain...the most we've had all summer.  It feels wonderful walking in the rain for a change.  It would feel even better is I was home in bed listening to it, but, hey, I am finally going to take some time off...the week of Labor Day.  I'm so looking forward to it.

This morning on the train, I had a little chuckle.  Gillette had bought up all the advertisement space on the car I was on to advertise their deodorant.  In big letters it said....Warning B.O. Zone.  You have to ride the subway system to see the significance of it, but suffice it to say, there are some pretty raunchy odors there in the summer time.  Much of it is culture, but HEY you are in this country now...our culture is not to stink.   


Today I wanted to share a little about what I've been learning about Huna.  No, I haven't given it up yet, still studying...just haven't written about what I have learned.  A few posts back I spoke of letting go and forgiveness according to the Hawaiian Code of Forgiveness, when we forgive others, we are also forgiving ourselves.   We carry inside us as parts of our unconscious mind, all the significant people in our lives. It is helpful to think of these parts of us as similar to like Carl Jung's archetypes.  Perhaps there are family patterns that that you do not want, generational themes that get passed along in families.  The process of Ho'oponopono allows us to  clean up our genealogy as well as to clean up our relationships with other people in our lives.

Ho'oponopono ("to make right") is a healing process used by both the ancient Hawaiians and those who practice Huna today.  There are times in our lives when we carry negative energy or emotions from our past, and even though we feel we have moved on, that negative impact on our lives and our emotional well being lingers on. When this negativity from our past seems to follow us around, it might be time for Ho'onopono, the Hawaiian process of making things right. It is a very powerful  process which is very easy to remember. You can go deep with it rather quickly, bringing lightness and healing quite soon to your heart and mind. One of the central exercises - you could call it a personal discipline - one of the primary gifts of Ho'oponopono, is a very effective forgiveness exercise.

Ho'oponopono Meditation

The following is a very simple meditation adapted from the Ho'oponopono technique.

1 Light a Candle; sit down in a quiet space where you know you will not be disturbed.

2 Take several deep breaths until you feel centered and calm.

3 Now, imagine a golden light pouring though the top of your head, bathing each cell as it surrounds your body.

4 Next, think of anyone who you has hurt you in the past or someone you feel has hurt you...anyone with whom you do not feel totally aligned or supported by.

5 Picture the person in front of you and mentally say "I apologize, I forgive you, I love you". Now let go of the person. Surround the person in golden light and see them floating away.  If appropriate, cut the cord that connects you to that person.

6.  Now visualize the next person ; repeat the phrase, again surround them with golden light.

7. Continue with this process until you can't think of anyone else Remember to also forgive yourself. No matter how long it takes, make sure to give yourself enough time to perform this healing.

8. Finally give thanks all the people you have visualized and don't forget to thank yourself

9. Take a few clarifying breaths; open your eyes. Be sure to have a large glass of water on hand to ground and cleanse you.








Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Pisces Full Moon

Good morning on this wonderful fall-like day.  It's pretty darned cool outside, and it feels marvelous...a hint of what is to come. Yesterday I knew it was going to be cool, but had no idea it was going to be so windy.  Needless to say, my walk to the subway after work was quite tricky as it was a struggle trying to keep my skirt from down.

How like a queen comes forth the lonely Moon
From the slow opening curtains of the clouds
Walking in beauty to her midnight throne!
--
George Croly, Diana--

Today the Pisces Full Moon will occur. Pisces is the last sign of the Zodiac and is depicted symbolically as the fish.  The message of this moon is one of trust.  The answers to our questions our all around us, but we have to learn to trust ourselves and to trust that their is a much bigger Cosmic plan that we can see at the present time. Things that were previously hidden from view may come to light, and we will find ourselves feeling ultra sensitive.  Let your feelings flow because now is the time to let go, to move on.  Go within and listen to the self. This Full Moon is all about connecting to the spirit, to the Divine within us, to our imagination and a sense of magic.  Keep in mind, though, that when the Moon is full in Pisces it opposes the Sun which is now in practical Virgo.; hence, there is a necessity to balance that dreaminess with a firm footing in the material world.

Since the beginning of recorded time, we have been fascinated with the heavens...the stars, the comets, the glorious sun...and, of course, the moon, the great lady of the night.  For centuries, she has been surrounded by myth and superstition.  For example, in parts of Britain, anyone seeking good fortune should bow to the New Moon and turn over any silver coins they have in their pocket.  The silver color of the moon is rumored to have a direct affinity with the silver from which the coins were made.

The Full Moon has long been associated with magic...as well as with states of madness (lunacy) and insomnia.  Has any of you ever  heard the old warning, "If you stare too long at the moon, you will go mad."  Of course, we know that is not true...but to our ancestors, it was a very real possibility.

When the moon, after covering herself with darkness as in sorrow, at last throws off the garments of her widowhood, she does not at once expose herself impudently to the public gaze; but for a time remains veiled in a transparent cloud, till she gradually acquires courage to endure the looks and admiration of beholders. --Augustus William Hare and Julius Charles Hare, Guesses at Truth, by Two Brothers, 1827


The moon has also been viewed as a symbol of love, erotic and otherwise. Lovers who kiss under the glow of a full moon are thought to be especially blessed. Witches are said to dance naked under the light of the moon because it enhances their seductive powers. The moon has inspired thousands upon thousands of songs and poems of love and affection down through the ages. We wish upon the first star we see at night, but to seduce the one we love, it is to the moon we turn.

The moon is the opposite of the sun. While the sun brings us light and warms us, the moon shines with a light that it doesn't share. It is dark by nature.. This darkness suggests secrecy and deception.  The full moon has been called the gateway to the dream world; hence, it is linked strongly with the subconscious. Perhaps it was the moon's appearance in the night that formed this association with our dreams. Perhaps it is a result of the moon's gravitational power over water - water traditionally being considered as the element linked with our soul...and the hidden aspects of the self.

There is something haunting in the light of the moon; it has all the dispassionateness of a disembodied soul, and something of its inconceivable mystery. --Joseph Conrad

Monday, August 23, 2010

Saved by an Angel


"The world rests in the night. Trees, mountains, fields, and faces are released from the prison of shape and the burden of exposure. Each thing creeps back into its own nature within the shelter of the dark. Darkness is the ancient womb. Nighttime is womb- time. Our souls come out to play. The darkness absolves everything; the struggle for identity and impression falls away. We rest in the night." --John O'Donohue from Anam Cara: A Book of Celtic Wisdom--

I remember the night as if it were yesterday; it is so clear. I was in my bed and just entering sleep when suddenly I realized I wasn't breathing. I'd suffered from sleep apnea for several years, but that night was, by far, the worst episode yet. I don't know if any of you have ever suffered with it, but it is such a dreadful and frightening feeling.  As I struggled to catch my breath, I felt like I was going to die and bolt upright in my bed. "This is it," I thought, "This is the end."

It was then that I saw it...the figure of a woman standing in my bedroom door.  I couldn't see her face in the darkness, but I knew that it was a woman; she was dressed in the most beautiful flowing white gown.."An angel, I thought...my  guardian angel."  Was she here to take me?  Was it my time?...Or was she here to save me?  At that point, so many thoughts were racing through my head.  "I don't want to die."  "My sons, what will happen to my children?" They were so young at the time. But, then as I sat there gazing at her, I felt my breath returning, and she began fading away.  By the time I was breathing normally, and my angel was gone.

Many of us have had encounters with angels or spirit guides...entities from another realm; they are a great help in times of need.  They are always with us and are simply waiting for us to call them into our lives or situations.  You may know that they are with you by a fragrance which seems to come from nowhere. Visually you may see them as a white light that you catch out of the corner of your eye, or you may even see them in all their glory... as in the case of the angel who saved my life. They guide us to make the right decisions and encourage ideas to transform our lives for the better.

Angels are many different things to different people.  The first historical records of these winged beings come to us from Zoraoastrianism, one of world's oldest religions; they had two forms of spiritual being--the Ahuras (angelic beings) and Devas (demonic).  The Hindus have their Gandharvas. They are not exactly angels, but perform similar functions.  The Native Americans have the Thunderbird, a mythological creature found in the spiritual lore of many of the first Nations of North America.  Shamans often take the form of a bird to travel into the different worlds in search for the person's soul fragments. Christianity, Judaism, and Islam all have their angelic beings.  

Personally, I like idea of the Celtic Angel or Anam Cara (soul friend).  According to Celtic spiritual tradition, your soul shines about your body in a luminous cloud (an aura).  When you are open and trusting with another, your two souls flow together, and you form a bond. This deeply felt bond cuts across all barriers of time and space...an ancestral spirit.  Celtic angels were viewed as spiritual beings who take a very special interest in humankind...especially those who are spiritually aware or just developing their spirituality.  They play the role of guardians or companions very much like the totem animal does in other shamanic traditions.

Millions of spiritual creatures walk the earth
Unseen, both when we wake and when we sleep.
--John Milton, Paradise Lost--

Angels help people in a number of ways; sometimes they will appear just briefly, while others may choose to spend an entire incarnation as a human on this planet helping others. Those  who choose to come to Earth in human form are those we call Earth angels. Ancestral guides are those who can claim some sort of kinship with you; there is a biological tie... a deceased ancestor. Some people say that these entities are reincarnated guides; they are the spirits of someone who loved us during their physical lifetime.  

I was truly blessed that night when an angel saved my life. I've not seen her since, but I know that she is there....watching over me.  Who was she?  A guardian angel?  Ancestral spirit?  My Anam Cara?  It's been over 30 years since that night, and I have never had another attack. I'd love to hear your angel tales if you have one.
 
"Angels appear to transcend all cultures, races, and systems. They are a part of human history and civilization, sometimes at the forefront, other times in the shadows, but they are always there. They don't belong to any one particular religion, although many modern people try to associate them with Christianity, Judaism, and Islam. No one religion holds total responsibility for the belief in angels. In truth, these religions only support the existence of angels, they didn't create them."--Silver Ravenwolf

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Just Another Ramble for sunday



The happy individual is able to renew daily and with full consciousness all the basic expressions of human identity: work, love, communication, play, and rest.--Robert Grudin

Last night as I had trouble falling asleep; I realized that this has been happening a lot lately.  Last night, my thoughts were on all the things I had to do today. "Ah, there's ironing to do,"  "Hair to wash, nails to do,"...and on and on.   On weeknights,   I usually find myself ruminating about all that I have to do.  "What I am going to do with all this paperwork? How am to complete it?", "How will I ever be able finish up all that work?", "Oh gosh, another intake.  How do I fit him into my schedule?" "What if...How...?   "What should I cook tomorrow?"  "What shall I buy at the store?" 

These and questions like them seem to be always popping up in our minds; we are always planning ahead.  Planning ahead is good; don't get me wrong.  But, too much planning, and we find that we are forgetting to live for today...and when we forget to live for today, we miss out on so much of the magic that surrounds us.

Whenever we start thinking too much about the future, we stop enjoying the present; hence, a lot of time which we could have enjoyed goes to waste in thinking and planning about the future...which, by the way, rarely happens in the exact way we plan it. And when we dwell on our What if's", we miss out on the thousands of small moments of happiness that we could have smiled and relaxed...and all because we had been too busy in shaping up our future plans.

He who does not get fun and enjoyment out of every day needs to reorganize his life. - George Matthew Adams




The truth of life is that all we have is today. Yesterday is only a memory, and tomorrow will never come...it will always be today...Hard to fathom for many of us.  I have so much trouble just letting go and letting life be... but I am working on it. Take time each day to stop all your activity and be thankful for each moment by recognizing its importance to your life. Celebrate the fact that you are alive and can see the wonder contained within each moment of your life. Become aware. Seek the beauty of each event and allow the majesty of your life to be known. That is a lesson I am still in the process of learning.

The past is history. 
The future is a mystery. 
The only time we really have is now - just this moment.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Speaking Up


The other day when I posted my little 'rant' I was actually amazed at how on the onset my mind was blank, but as I began to write, the words began to flow.  Although my rant had nothing to do with anything major that was interfering with my life, too often we tend to 'hold it in.'  Then, we ruminate about it and how it makes us feel.  That brings on the anger, the resentment; we begin to feel inadequate and unsupported...unloved.  It's not a nice feeling. 

I know many of you have heard me complain about a Yahoo smoking cessation group that I belonged to.  Well, I backed off...didn't leave because I am hoping someone returns, but also didn't post.  Then suddenly, someone posted "Where's Mary?  She hasn't posted in awhile, and I hope she is all right."  And several people responded that they hadn't heard from me.  Well, for awhile there, I was feeling so good, and despite my promise not to post, I couldn't help myself. And ya know what?  No one...not a soul...responded.  I was devastated...and the more I held it in, the more I could feel it eating away at me...so I didn't post to the group, but sent emails to several of the people who I had become friendly with and explained how badly I was feeling and that I was going to be leaving the group.  Ya know what?  I felt so much better after I had put it out there.  Of course, I know I have put it out here, but putting out there to people involved and finally getting out of there, was such a load off my chest.

Gosh, there was a time I was great at holding things in...still do to some extent, but don't allow it to stagnate for endless days.  Perhaps I will hold it a day or two, but no more than that. You see, I am one of those people who expect others to know what I want, what I am thinking.  Just too darned independent, I guess.  When I want and need help, I hate to ask for it.  Same thing with birthdays.  I never forget a birthday, and I expect everyone to do the same for mine. But, everyone is not like me.  Hubby was one of nineteen children, so birthday's were really not so big to them...unlike myself, an only child. So, because when we first met I told him the date of my birthday, I expected him to remember it...and when he didn't greet me with a Happy Birthday, I was left in total devastation....and because I didn't think I should 'have' to remind him, I was left to ruminate....for an entire week..."He doesn't love me."  "I'm not important to him." "How could he do this to me?"

The fact was, he wasn't doing ANYTHING to me...because he honestly hadn't remembered my birthday.  So, because I hadn't wanted to remind him, I ended up suffering inside for an entire week before I finally blew my gasket and carried on about "how could you forget my birthday." He was so humbled, I actually felt bad for him.  The following year to avoid any hurt feelings, I scribbled on the calendar "Mommy's birthday."  That way hubby didn't know it was my little reminder; he thought my boys had done it....and I didn't feel that I HAD to remind him.

You see, if you do not air your issues and just keep burying them, you will generate dis-ease in your body...especially if this is your way of coping with the knocks of life and being in relationships. No relationship is ever completely smooth sailing; in fact, someone once told me that if a couple never has a disagreement, there is definitely something wrong with the relationship.  So, if you are  keeping it all bottled in, then eventually you will end up exploding because you just have to let the air out!  And when you let it go that far, you may completely loose it and afterward suffer the consequences...which very well could mean you lose out big time in your relationship...depending on how viciously you lash out. 

Do you really want to play a guessing game when it comes to being real and authentic? Even if you just need someone to listen to you, you will find them. Friends and family are the best source; even blogging is a way for you to clear the air.  Gosh, knows, I've really exposed myself on this blog...but really felt better once I had gotten it out of my system. 

So my message is simple, be sure that you air out your issues, if you sleep on it, it will fester and grow into an ugly monster that most likely cause you a lot grief later on; you , your body, and your loved one  doesn’t need that negative energy. So, it is time to begin thinking about the things you are NOT saying and pay attention to your emotions.

"When you assume responsibility for what you experience and share what you experience in a spirit of companionship, that is the same as forgiveness.  When you hold someone responsible for what you experience, you lose power."--Gary Zukov from "The Seat of the Soul"


Friday, August 20, 2010

A Wonderful Night

Nature is my medicine.--Sara Moss-Wolfe
It's finally beginning to hit me...autumn is actually on its way.  Yesterday was my late day at work, and as I was walking home from the subway, I noticed that darkness was already setting in.  I hadn't even noticed that before.  I know it's been in the works; it doesn't happen overnight, but I guess it was just so darned hot and humid, I closed my eyes to all the hints of fall.

It was such a wonderful night.  Because it was getting dark, everyone was all in their homes, and the neighborhood was quiet and peaceful...not the treacherous maze of toys, bicycles, baby carriages, and screeching children that I usually have to walk through.  Now don't get me wrong, I LOVE children and am rather impatiently waiting to become a grandmother, but I live in a neighborhood where the women have one child after another....so I would venture to guess that on my block alone there must be at least 75 children. Now, imagine them all out riding bikes or running up and down the sidewalk, baby carriages in front of almost every home, and you have the picture.

Why, I was even finally able to spend some time out in my backyard.  It's always hard for me to fall asleep on Thursday; it's partly due to the fact that I need time to unwind after work, but also, I think, a bit psychological.  You can actually psyche yourself up NOT to fall asleep.  It was simply magnificent out there.  The air was cool, and there was an ever so slight breeze.  The moon, not yet full, was shining brightly in the sky.


Look at the trees, look at the birds, look at the clouds, look at the stars... and if you have eyes you will be able to see that the whole existence is joyful.  Everything is simply happy.  Trees are happy for no reason; they are not going to become prime ministers or presidents and they are not going to become rich and they will never have any bank balance.  Look at the flowers - for no reason.  It is simply unbelievable how happy flowers are.  --Osho

Life should never be so busy that we don't take the time to appreciate and bless our beautiful planet...the land...the waters...and all that surrounds us.  We can do this in our daily lives by stopping to reflect on the color of the sky, by appreciating a bird that sits on our back fence or on the branch of a majestic old tree, by taking in the scent and beauty of a flower...or simply enjoying the breeze on your skin.  


According to the Huna teachings, in order for any of us to gain health, we must strive to create a state of pono or balance in our lives, and Nature can provide use us with many tools that will help us to heal. Thus, when we connect with nature, we can find healing in the earth, in the wind, the plants, the stars, the water....all of Her wonderful gifts.  Try the following little Huna exercise daily.

At sunrise, use this time to energize yourself and to set your intentions for the new day...and then, as the sun sets, take time to reflect and to let go by imagining that the setting sun takes away any negativity from the day or any aspect that needs forgiveness. 




Thursday, August 19, 2010

Thursday Rants


Gosh, I'm at a loss today.  Imagine that. I've got a dozen things racing through my mind, but nothing really worth writing about. Guess I have Bloggers' block.  But since I am at a loss, it's a perfect day for a rant.  As a matter of fact, it's been quite awhile since I've a ranted, so I guess it is way overdue. Actually, there's a few things on my mind.
  
First on my list is technology.  I don't think I like the idea of a machine taking over what a person once did. Subway token clerks are being laid off all over the city, and the machine has taken their place.  Yeah, I know what you are thinking...just a short while ago I was complaining that these clerks make fabulous bucks for doing nothing.  Well, it wasn't always that way.  Time was when they had to earn their keep.  People didn't have the option of getting their subway fare from a machine; no they had to wait in line for the subway clerk...and he ACTUALLY had to handle money and hand you your fare.  I just don't trust those machines.  What if the last I have to my name is $20, and the darned machine eats it?  Who helps me to get it back?  There is no one around.

And while we are on the subject of token booth clerks, I cannot stand metrocards.  Give me the old token anyday.  Time was you were handed 10 coin-like tokens (from a real live token clerk) when you bought your weeks worth of subway fare.  Now it's a card you get (from a machine), and personally, I don't see where it is such an improvement.  Let's say you happen to lose that card, and take it from someone who has ridden the subway for almost 40 years, it's much easier to lose a card than it is to lose a handful of coins. Now, if you used a credit card in the machine, you can probably get your money back...after several months have gone by, but if not, and if you don't have the number code for the card, you might as well forget about it. You are not going to see that money again. 


And hey, how about books?  Will one day books be a thing of the past?  Used to be that everyone on the subway had a book or a newspaper to read on their trip to and from work.  Now they pull out these new-fangled gadgets to read.  Now, don't get me wrong.  I see nothing wrong with it for some people, but I happen to 'treasure' books.  Some people read just to read.  They finish their book and toss it away.  I highlight, jot notes in the margins, bend pages...and I NEVER or rarely part with a book.  Now, don't get me wrong. I've nothing against the gadgets....I just want the option to buy a book if I want one.  Just to show you, I was looking to order some books from Barnes & Noble and found one I really wanted.  You can imagine my disappointment when I found out it didn't come in book form. 

Next on my list is courtesy. Whatever happened to manners?  'Please', 'thank you'...antiquated words from a bygone era.  Rarely does anyone hold the door for you...and please don't get me started on the foul language.  My parents weren't often there for me, but what they didn't teach me, the teachers did.  And public transportation?  Heck, if one of us kids didn't volunteer our seat to an adult, the driver pulled to the side of the road, and we all got out of our seats. And you never saw parents pushing their children to grab the last seat on the bus.  No way, they were too busy teaching their kids respect. 

Once when I was in my 40's , I mentioned to a male friend what poor taste it was to see all the men sitting and not offer a woman a seat, and he replied, "Well, you ladies asked for this.  You wanted equality.  Blame this on women's lib."   Okay, I can understand that.  Equality is equality.  Right?  But how does that explain making an elderly person stand?  Or a pregnant woman for that matter?  Why does a 63 year old woman stand up to give up her seat to a disabled elderly man while the young healthy man seated next to her just watches and then goes back to fiddling with his phone.  Maybe it's just me, but I just don't understand it.

We should always treat others with  respect. It's really not hard to say please, thank you, and excuse me when necessary. Hold the door open if someone is right behind you. Heck, I even stand there and hold the door when people are about 10 feet away.  I figure it I close it, it will be slamming in their face by the time they get there...and some of those doors to go up to the subway are pretty darned heavy. Cut back on foul language, it's not that hard. Especially the kids.  In my day, we had our mouth washed out with soap if we used those words. These are all examples of simple manners. You don't have to go out of your way to do any of these things. It is just common courtesy. People get mad when others are rude to them, yet they can be just rude themselves. They just don't see it as such.

Sometimes the lack of manners makes me wonder if etiquette classes should be mandatory in schools. We didn't have a class on etiquette, but the school taught us manners back in the day. And gosh, it most certainly worked...because at 63, I still think I am pretty darned courteous...and it all stems from the learning I got when I was growing up. So, please, just remember to be courteous to those around you;  courtesy can be catchy.  


Wow, for someone with nothing to say, I sure had a lot to say.  Sorry about that.  Now it's your turn.  What irks you?