Tag Archive: dreams. spirituality


Out of the Mists

Out of the Mists

I have never been a fan of bright blazing sun. A clear day of bright blue skies, white clouds and light that is happy but not harsh is of course lovely. But for me, that is energizing and social but not always the best situation for the kind of photography that I love to do.

I seek to express in pictures what is alive within me ie the magic and sense of mystery that is the wellspring and inspiration for my own creative vision and artistic or literary expression. I try to capture the personal meaning for my own lived-life in pictures.

The quality of light has a lot to do with this. Dappled light, slanted light, or fog and mists are agents of magic and mystery for me. Subjects photographed are what they are…but they are also something else as well as we go past their physical form and presentation into metaphor or symbolism for deeper stories or states of being.

I am not afraid of mists and fog. Sound is muffled and softened, but it echoes as well in a strange haunting way that cannot be ignored.  Things that are invisible slowly emerge from the mists as if from Avalon, pass by in front of us  muted form, and then once again disappear and we question…”what was the meaning of this dream?” or “what is the purpose of my life? If only it were a little more clear!”.

But dreams are not always crystal clear as if in bright light and we move through our days at times uncertain wondering if we are on the right path…our SOUL path… our unique and valid path,  for in the mists there is a sense of mystery that allows for curiosity, experimentation  in the hints, while needing a  sense of courage and adventure mixed together to decipher the path and purpose.  We hope to sail in the right direction on our given time-line but for this we need both a compass and our intuition…..

The beloved Celtic priest/poet John O’Donohue  eloquently said of our time here on earth:

“Our life is a band of brightness between two Invisibilities“.

 

Breachwat Boat

 

We come from the mists, we will go back to the mists, but in the middle…TODAY… we have the opportunity to recognize ourselves on the sea of time… and chart our course as best as we can.. the little ship of our lives is our own band of brightness even in the fog, yes TODAY….

**People who live where I do and my friends here will recognize the Galilee Breachway in NewEngland. We love..all of us…to come here and watch the boats..especially the brave fishing vessels come in and out of safe harbor.

*** The  photographs are from my line of  original phot0 art notecards

*** Please feel free to leave a *like* or comment, or repost/share. (we writers need a little help and encouragement!)

portal 5From Christine, the Greening Spirit

please check my other blogs if you enjoyed this:

**If you like to eat, check my http://sensuoussoupsandsuppers.wordpress.com

** If you like music, play piano or teach piano check out the stories/memoirs on my

http://pianomistress.wordpress.com. It’s fun!

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Radiance Melissa

“There is no creation that does not have a radiance, be it greenness or seed, blossom, (leaf) or beauty. It could not be creation without it.” ~ Hildegarde of Bingen  (1098-1179 c.e.)

It is true than everything has its own shimmer and radiant sparkling, but it is not always perceived except with the eyes of the Mystic or Dreamer. How lovely are those graced and gifted moments when Light opens and illumines for us the life force of the greening spirit that is of science, earth and heaven all dancing together.

Radiance 10

The delicious woods and gardens walk with one of my daughters in honor of Mother’s Day was filled with the radiance of life and love … in the land, the vegetation and air itself. It is no wonder that painters have often painted “halos” of light around who and what is holy and beautiful.

May the eyes of our Souls be ever open and perceiving of the Radiance existing all around us… 

(top picture, my daughter M…who is full of radiance herself)

From Christine, The Greening Spirit

ALSO: Yellow 3                                                      http://sensuousoupsandsuppers.wordpress.com

http://wordmagicandthelawofattraction.wordpress.com

http://pianomistress.wordpress.com

 

Gareden tulips soulspace

In the poetry and writing of the Mystics, the flower garden is often a metaphor for the Soul or the time out to tend the Soul. If you are not sure exactly what “the Soul” is or means….just open the gate to the flower garden, enter there and be IN it surrounded by the colors, textures, imaginative shapes and sensuous scents and you will come to understand “The Soul” or Soul-Space.

Linger there, awed by the beauty and the stimulation of all your senses,  for “the Soul”  is not separate from the body…. the body is IN the Soul, surrounded by the Soul, and not the other way around. Soul Space is often boundaried and contained, the fence symbolic of the time apart necessary to pay attention to its creative potential and flowering gifts…time out from the “un-awares” and surface mainstream life. 

Garden tulips-001

But really..better still…the secret to happiness:  once inside the garden, awake and aware, it is possible to gather the flowers of Soul and bring them back out into your life and the world around you…so in need of Beauty. Live it! BE it!

From within the Garden,

Christine, the Greening Spirit

Flower Child

There are lots of ways to be in Soul Space!

Please visit my other blogs…

http://pianomistress.wordpress.com

http://wordmagicandthelawofattraction.wordpress.com

http://sensuoussoupsandsuppers.wordpress.com

Innermost Kiss

The SOUL is kissed by God in its innermost regions.  With interior yearning, grace and blessing are bestowed. ~ Hildegard of Bingen

I have always loved Hildegarde of Bingen  (1098-11790).  Benedictine Abbess, mystic, herbalist, musician, writer, Visionary, and risk-taker,  it was also her vibrant spirituality so radiantly full of earthliness, grounded-ness and sensuality that named and nominated her centuries later as a woman far ahead of her time.  I have also always been amazed that she was not burned at the stake for her feminine expressions of the sacred in words, phrases and sentences not taken from ecclesiastical writings or scripture, but rather out of the lived experience of nature, earthly life and her personal depths of soul.

How lovely to be “known” so intimately by the Source of Life, which in the language and times of her experience is the name “God”  and aslo as  the Greening Power, Veriditas,  that moistens us spiritually and physically in our incarnation here transforming everything into exquisite beauty.

And how blessed are we to have a friend, lover or companion with whom we are safe enough to unfurl our petals and skirts, emotionally, psychologically and physically to be known, cherished and kissed in the secret heart of our being, allowing for the complete revelation of our own personal blossoming.

We ALL have a secret Center, often hidden from a harsh world. It can be dangerous to be vulnerable for there are those who do not see Beauty, who move at a rapid pace by with eyes focused on other less exquisite things, who trample and violate sacred space on the earth and in the hearts and minds of people.

I think of the wars all around the globe right now, and the violence, bombs, guns, weapons, artillery  and the weapons of mind, thoughts and words that ravage rather than kiss everything in their path. Hildegarde wrote plays complete with music and script for her monastery of nuns to perform, keeping art alive as spiritual expression and nourishment. She once said of the assigned characters in her play that the role of the devil was spoken, not sung because “The Devil is the only one who does not/cannot sing”  For Hildegarde,  beauty, art and music were like the “Kiss of God in our innermost regions” eliciting and calling forth Beauty and Wholeness in all things.

Those who kill, maim, and move forth in political, fundamentalist or sectarian violence in the wars everywhere with “toys” of destruction have NO MUSIC in them, cannot sing or dance and have no opening within themselves to the innermost region of Beauty where they may be kissed and moistened into connectedness and the preservation of precious Life. It is sad for us, and it is sad for them to be so devoid of true openness to the exquisite Sacred known by the mystics and poets.

These are challenging times. We choose to allow ourselves to be kissed in our innermost regions by Beauty which requires vulnerability and the moist Greening Power of Possibilities. As Hildegarde suggests, the YEARNING for Beauty and Harmony is necessary for the blessings of Peace to be restored and renewed.

May it be so.  (Originally published 9/9/2014)

From Christine, the Greening Spirit

*** This site is Food for the Soul.

For Food for the Body and Cooking Memoirs you are invited to visit my cooking blog  http://sensuoussoupsandsupper.wordpress.com

For reflections on the importance of and Memoirs on teaching music please check my blog  http://pianomistress.wordpress.com

 

                                                      

 

Mugwort

Mugwort

In the previous Herbal Love 1 essay “Finding My Plant Spirit Guide”  I spoke of MUGWORT and how it seems to have come to me many years ago, planting itself right outside my bedroom window next to the exact wall outside, where I sleep and DREAM inside. In fact, I do dream most vividly and for thirty years have led and participated in a circle of dreamers who gather regularly to share our dreams and our life stories. Combined with my herbal studies, I have learned of the ancient connections between dreams and the knowledge passed on to indigenous healers from the plants themselves through the vehicle of the dreams.

Over and over again in interviews with shamans and healers in various cultures, the “Dream” is mentioned as a source of the wisdom and knowing about certain plants to use for those needing care, healing and balance. In his wonderful book “Sacred Plant Medicine”,  Stephen Harrod Buhner writes ” While many indigenous cultures value and use empirical knowledge about medicine passed down from generation to generation, they typically attribute their most effective healing knowledge to visions or dreams of the plant spirit or other helpers. (p. 25). He continues: “..it was hard to overlook the detailed knowledge the Indians had of their plant world……As native peoples were questioned more closely about their plant medicines, the uniformly replied that the source of their knowledge came from dreams or visions or that the plant had told them its medicinal use.” (p. 27).

As I pondered these writings, I wondered what plant I should choose who might talk to me as a friend and helper as I love so many of them and have grown so many of the wonderful herbs in my garden, teaching others of them and how to use them. But then, I thought about Mugwort…so much of it under my bedroom window and that it is an herb associated with dreams and the visions and deep-seeing of the third eye of intuition and I laughed out loud ..no need to go “looking” for a plant ally…there was one in profusion right outside my dreaming space throughout all seasons! How incredibly obvious! And I never personally planted it there…it came of its own accord!

Mugwort, mugwort…the premier herb to mix with lavender for the famous Dream Pillows we all make in our herbal internships as a special fragrant project, sometimes inserting rose petals for love, or a tinysmooth crystal for deeper insight. Mugwort essential oil anointing the third-eye space of the forehead to enhance visions and intuition. Mugwort used in teas for young women to regulate menses…the moontime…as mugwort (Artemesia vulgaris) is ruled by the moon. Mugwort, made into a tea for rituals around the dark or full moon…Mugwort, made into a tea for the dreamers refreshment in our workshops or a stronger brew before sleeping to stimulate new dreams. In Pam Montgomery’s book “Plant Spirit Healing: A Guide to Working with Plant Consciousnesness”, she writes of Artemis, Goddess of the Moon and ruler of Mugwort: As the Moon Goddess she embodies the magic of the dreamtime and imparts to mugwort the ability to easily enter daydreams, night dreams and journey dreams, just as easily with insight, clarity and deep knowing” (p.183)

 

The Dreamer (Artist unknown)

The Dreamer (Artist unknown)

 

We live in times that desperately need new vision, deeper insight and sparkling clarity to face the challenges of our personal, cultural and ecological lives. For those who are natural dreamers (The Pisces, Cancer and Scorpio peoples) and those who wish to pay more attention to the wisdoms of the dreamtime that are available to those who pay attention, Mugwort can be a wonderful ally and guide.

The recipe below for Dreamer’s Tea is shared with you as I share in the sacred wisdom circles that I am part of. The recipe is not carved in stone..you may add more or less as you are inspired.

Dreamer’s Tea (dried herbs)

2 parts mugwort

1 part rose petals

1 part spearmint leaves or to taste (mugwort is a little bitter)

1/2 or less lavender for relaxation and spiritual uplift (optional)    OR  1/2 or less dried rosemary for dream recall (optional)

 

When I make my infusions (tea) I do not have a specific amount of dried tea per cup of water as it depends on taste and purpose. As a “social tea” in working wisdom circles like our “Dreams/Peer Mentoring Retreats” I make a lighter brew for the spirit of the day (perhaps a well rounded teaspoon of dried tea per cup, and a short steeping time). For a before bedtime infusion to stimulate dreams and dream recall, I brew it stronger…perhaps a tablespoon dried herb mix per cup and steep it longer, adjusting or adding more water to taste I love my teas with organic locally harvested HONEY to taste as well.

May you be blessed by Mugwort and your Dreams and Visions tonight!

From Christine, The Greening Spirit

shawl  To inspire your dreams and visions for a creative life, good food and beautiful music, please visit my other blogs!

For delicious comfort food and kitchen memoirs: http://sensuoussoupsandsuppers.com (generous use of culinary herbs!)

For beautiful music inspiration, piano and music memoirs: http://pianomistress.wordpress.com

For the power of manifestation and good words: http://wordmagicandthelawofattraction.wordpress.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

December Mysteries

December. Cold. Dark. Very dark. How do we navigate through the loss of Light and Warmth in these northern  climates that have such dramatic changes in Seasons?

There are three paths which we are pondering here about how we navigate through the Winter season especially through the month of December when that darkness and cold make us long for the rememberance and hope for returning connection, light and warmth..the return of HOPE itself.  Part 1 being the most immediate and superficial, “The Commercial Path”, Part 2 being the  creative Cultural Path of Beauty, and finally, but perhaps most meaningfully Part 3, the Path of Sacred Mysteries.

Sacred Mysteries are those deeper times  and experiences  in which we really do not have control and for which we have no pat answers or explanations. Sometimes we experience dreams or even “miracles” or epiphanies which defy reason. In response to this, we attempt to create understanding and meaning through stories and myths that call us inward to ponder deeply the meaning of our life here. These myths and stories help us to find answers to important questions like where did we come from, how did we get here, who do we belong to in both the visible and invisible worlds, what gifts are we suppose to share with others,  how should we love, and how might we connect to each other, the Earth and he Divine. The Commercial Path is but an empty illusory fix and diversion, fleeting and ultimately meaningless. The Cultural Path inspires and uplifts, but the Path of Sacred Mysteries is transformative and can change our lives and our way of living and loving,  forever.

 

Angel by Ironshod

Angel by Ironshod

Around the time just before the Solstice this month, I will be posting until Christmas several of these Mysteries…The Solstice, Hannukah, Mary of Advent, and Mary and the Child of Christmas, each one a doorway to greater connection to between Soul, the Divine and the Earth. Please join me in the spirit of all Mystery in pondering and prayerfully celebrating these Lights in the Darkness.

Veriditas!  Christine, the Greening Spirit  (Check also Paths 1 and 2! )

Miracle of Frost on Glass photo credit CP Green

Miracle of Frost on Glass
photo credit CP Green

 

Tree 10

Shamans in ancient and modern rituals and ceremonies, through the use of potent brews, mushrooms and scents go into altered states  in which they slip through a portal of natural time into a place of deep-seeing. In this alternative state of consciousness, they move through a dreamlike journey between this world and the Other, perceiving colors, shadows, shapes and energies not readily discernible in normal time, but existing simultaneously with what we call “real”.  They are “under-the-influence” of chemical and magical substances with inherited knowledge and caution, to see and experience a level of beauty, connectedness and possibilities we ordinarily cannot see. They are DEEP-SEEING and eventually come back to full mundane consciousness with a deeper knowing and perception of the way things REALLY are in this world.

I am under the influence of  the PICASA  photographic editing program and beautiful music at full volume with head phones as I write this post…and a my magical brew,  a healing tea of the Ojibway peoples of Canada. Though the MAGIC of technology I work with the image of the tree in my Yarden to see what it might really look like through the portal from this world into the Other, where colors and light and textures are even more wondrous that what our senses perceive on this side of daily-here life.

There is a  joy in the world alongside this one..a treasure of Beauty and vibrancy, shimmering and radiating light and color in different modalities than we are used to. Things are not always as we perceive. There is a myth that altho blood when it hits the air is red, but when running through our veins, is the color blue. Look at your wrist! What is the truth? How are things, really?

Tree 15

 

Under the influence of Picasa, beautiful music, and Ojibwa tea of woodland herbs and bark…the amazing beauty of this Autumn is almost more than we can  comprehend. For the possibilities of what it might truly be through Deep-Seeing, I am awed and delighted. And waltzing to the music in my living room in between writing!

Tommy Bhetty’s Waltz….   https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BXO3PZqda14 (for YOUR waltzing pleasure!)

From Christine, the Greening Spirit
We have many ways of seeing the world….visit my other blogs…

self Oct 2For love of music: http://pianomistress,wordpress.com

For manifesting a positive life experience through good words and speech: http://wordmageandthelawofattraction.wordpress.com

For being under the influence of delicious food:  http://sensuoussoupsandsuppers.wordpress.com

 

 

Down time

Any creative person worth their salt knows that without seemingly aimless “time out”, there IS no authentic originality in whatever their medium of expression is.  Original writing, painting, composing does not manifest sole-y (soul-y?) by will, though that is necessary later on to produce what came through during the drifting dream time.

Rushing about, meeting all of the world’s demands, forcing yourself to be “on task” without breaking away to be momentarily “irresponsible” from our culturally-assigned roles  is a sure way to block the creative flow or originality that wants to come through you, and you only!

I captured this image at a retreat center on an island in the Northeast. This fellow “on retreat”  even set up his two fishing poles to randomly “catch” whatever the vast universe of the sea would offer… releasing the need to work it or to be in control of it all, open to new fish..new ideas..which might come of their own accord to offer fresh inspiration. Total openness and trust..a willingness to cast a line, let it do its own fishing and see what turns up. I imagined that as he gazed out to the horizon in a sort of dream state, both mindless and mindful, that  there was silent communication going on between himself and the Universe that he would only realize was happening later on, on the way home in the car or even days later when a new and brilliant idea or prompting popped up in his mind when problem-solving or creating in whatever is his way.

Down time is fertile time and so necessary for all of us and especially for artists, poets, writers, crafters, storytellers, and even creative business people so that  the best of what we have to offer can be be reeled in from the vast sea of the Unconscious through our spirit and back out into the world.

Never apologize for the time spent in reverie or daydreaming. That may be the only way something new can manifest when the old forms and structures no longer work and no longer sustain life.

From Christine, The Greening Spirit

red    My other blogs are good too!

For Law of Attraction: http://wordmagicandthelawofattraction.wordpress.com

For recipes and cooking memoirs: http://sensuoussoupsandsuppers.wordpress.com

For music/piano: http://pianomistress.wordpress.com

 

 

Bleeding heart 4

As a writer, I am very active on FB and I love all the friends I come in contact with who are creative,  articulate, compassionate, awake, concerned,  and Visionary.  Some are social activists and warriors for Justice, some are advocates for Beauty and those things that inspire and uplift  (music and the arts), some are humorists and do it well with irony about all that is crazy and falling apart (Jon Stewart and Steven Colbert have this craft perfected) and some are asleep and clueless or in denial, preferring to stay light and happy at all costs, so as not to feel emotionally disturbed in any way.

Yet in reality, so many of us are conflicted between the grief and heartfelt pain  (if not rage) of a world in chaos,  and at the same time, hopeful about the emerging consciousness of new possibilities for a saner world of inter-connectedness and creative solutions for humans and the Earth so stretched and traumatized by greed and violence. On what shall we focus?

Our hearts bleed for so many reasons, both globally and personally in our own lives. (The saying “Be kind for everyone you meet is fighting a great battle” is so true!)  How do we deal with all of it and stay sane..?  How do we not pull in and close the shutters of our hearts to protect our emotional vulnerability and carry on? Fighting AGAINST everything only hardens us and adds to the chaos and it is not good for out physical heart either

We each have to find a way that makes our life worth living and for me it is what feeds and nourishes my heart. For myself that nourishment comes from a conscious decision, if not a natural tendency,  to focus on and talk about what is beautiful and uplifting to the spirit….to focus and somehow express that which  allows honest tears to flow from the heart, that fills my heart with COURAGE  to share when challenged to hide my gifts and talents out of fear of non-acceptance or judgement  and to give outwardly what I have to share hopefully inspiring the same in others.

We take a risk when we are vulnerable,  expressing in words or creativity what is in our hearts that is tender, gentle, passionate or especially, wounded.  Will others think us strange, odd, too sensitive, out of touch with “reality” if we do not carry angry signs in big groups, but choose a different focus of expression through the celebration of beauty and creative solutions?

There comes a time for tears and tenderness, and for creative self expression that takes the stories, struggles, successes and visions in our HEARTS and puts them fearlessly out into the world.  The artists, musicians, poets, mythic storytellers, theater people, and mystics know this already. Their offerings flow from the heart which in a society that celebrates “the head” for supposed wise decision-making often leading us towards disaster,  might ignite in society the desire to change course toward LIFE and celebration instead.

Thank you to all those whose hearts are vulnerable but open allowing Beauty to flow through them and into us and the world! They are the Cultural Creatives, who will be highlighted in future essays.

 

*** One such powerful Cultural Creative who is out there expressing fearlessly from the heart is the  composer,/piano virtuoso/symphonic conductor and music educator  Jarrod Radnich (youtube/Pirates of the Caribbean, Theme from Harry Potter).Jarrod R 2 I share the link for a special piece of music  (Hativkah) he has arranged that for me was an inspiration for this particular essay. For full appreciation and healing please use headphones as the piano’s fullness, depth and vibrations are essential as a healing modality.

http://www.reverbnation.com/jarrodradnich/song/9818535-hatikvah-la-mantovana-virtuosic

From Christine, The Greening Spirit

Tigress

 

****** You are invited to visit my other sites:

  Cooking and Memoirs: http://sensuoussoupsandsuppers.wordpress.com

  Piano and Music Memoirs: http://pianomistress.wordpress.com/2014/09/10/role-reversal-pianoteacher-in-the-hot-seat/

 Law of Attraction/Lunch and Learn Seminars:  http://lunchandlearnseminars.wordpress.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Circle 2

The world is in such turmoil. So many petitions to sign trying to stop the chaos, so many rallies for and against things that are so seemingly larger than us in the sweep of history. How do we deal with it, often feeling powerless? There are many ways of giving Voice and  effect change, and one of them is by going local and “grassroots” starting where we are in our own Community…AT the grassroots. Circle 5

 

Last week the Women’s Creativity Group from our Unitarian Church held a fire circle at the home of one of our members. There really was no agenda except to be there in Community, to build the fire and be together in its light and radiant elemental energy, to write down on a slip of paper something that we wished to release and place it in the flames to burn and be free of whatever burdened us or had served its usefulness in our lives. A simple ritual and a plate of sliced watermelon passed around for refreshment on a waning summer’s eve.

Staying in the immediate area of our neighborhood, and in the immediate interior stories lying tender within our souls, we were able to gain both freedom, release, and comfort in the presence of Community and the powerful mesmerizing energy of the fire.

In every fire circle it seems that there is one person who voluntarily and quietly moves forward out of the circle to adjust the logs and twigs, setting them up for the burning. Often also, that person becomes like a Priestess and Keeper of the fire, archetypally, as she moves around it during the evening prodding and poking to contain its elemental power and to encourage its fullness. Sarah, with her jacket for evening chill, placed it over her head to tend the flames and in the dwindling natural light of the closing day around the fire, she indeed looked like a Priestess as little sparks drifted up and out of the center into to air. Circle 3

In times of great cultural, political, economic, social and global change it is good to gather locally with old and new friends. To go “elemental” whether it be fire, or water, or wind or earth. In the circle of good people, being close to the elements brings out our humanity as well as our connection with powerful natural forces that symbolize how we might go about change creatively…EARTH for community gardening, WATER for compassion and tenderness, AIR for intelligent investigation and positive words that create what we want, not what we don’t want, and FIRE for belonging, releasing, passion and action, just to name a few of many  possibilities!

Circle

We need to work with the metaphors of the Elementals and nature. We NEED to accept our humble roles as true Priests and Priestesses at the grassroots, making sacred ritual out of everything we do. We need Community and Belonging right where we are. Now. Today.

From Christine, the Greening Spirit

IMG_7728
NOTE: Synchronicity is one of the amazing surprises of the Universe’s ongoing conversation with us. While preparing to write this essay, I was led to this link below through other mysterious connections having to do with another topic entirely on music and Cultural Creatives amongst us for inspiration. Elemental Fire Rituals are in the consciousness of people and communities in this intense period of change. For more inspiration and information on Community Fire Circles check this site: http://sacredfirecommunity.org/communityfires/why-fire/

**** This site hopefully is Food for the Soul. For Food for the Body, please check out my other blog here  http://sensuoussoupsandsuppers.wordpress.com

 

 

 

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