Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Mother, Earth, Goddess

This is something I wrote for a church service that I participated in, and wanted to share.

Goddess Mother
Mother Earth

I have never known what to call you… but I have known you all my life.

I grew up in a the small-town Texas world of: brimstone and fire. damnation! hallelujah! Of being taught to serve and fear a God who was a provider and punisher. 
Never a nurturer. How could He be the alpha and omega, I would think, without bringing forth birth or nurturing?

Feeling lost in theses questions in my formative years, Instinctively, I would sit outside and feel you.
To feel alone with you, who I could not identify but who I felt. You, who were so great and vast, that instead of sitting beside you, I felt I was sitting under you, like you were the sky - or inside of you like you were the universe. 

I would watch cycles go on, over and over, the birth and death and rebirth.. again and again…
 of blackberry bushes out by the road, trees losing acorns and pine cones, the migration of birds...,  rainy seasons and how they brought birth….. the dry seasons and how they made everything whither.  I've seen in nature, the basis for legends of goddesses and how they've encompassed both creation and destruction. Because you are both, 
and the nurturing. I have found that you have the power of the alpha, and omega, while not being absent in the middle in between.

I have felt you in so many places. 

In breezes perfectly timed, blowing my face and shoulders and my hair in a moment
that perfect moment when I needed to wake up and see myself in the context of the world around me, and let trivial worries wash away

through the loud silence of a night filled with crickets, or through your whispers of wind throughout the trees or kicking up dust on the dirt road where I lived
 I could hear you speaking.

Without words you were telling me that all I needed and all i would need to know was already there. There was no thought to think, no love to make, no wisdom to give that wasn't already there, in every particle of everything, waiting to be taken in, translated and given to others in whatever form they understood, be it love, food, a conversation, an encouraging touch on the shoulder, a song. 

I am, we are, but vessels, sharing and directing your magnificence with one another.
I would need to learn to open myself and receive it in order to give it.

To me, the giving of these lessons has always been the work of a mother teaching her child.  A great mother who encompasses all stories of mothers, all goddesses and their legends, in every story of woman's strength and intuition, All ways of attempting to understand this great SHE -- you, within whom all birth and distruction, all wisdom and love is contained,  And now as mother myself, your wisdom moves though me and into my children... This passing of ancient wisdom and love, through me and to my children, is both a spiritual practice to honor you, the great mother, earth, goddess, and also a way that I see you within me. 

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Our mother who art in heaven

Today I attended a workshop that I will be attending twice monthly at my church. I'm so excited about it. It's been going on for a while but I only just now took the dive and joined the group.

 The purpose of the workshop is to write a monologue relating to my experience with the feminine/masculine divine. For each workshop participant this could pan out in a number of ways, but each workshop we will discuss, explore, do improv and writing exercises as we use these creative practices to hone in on what we want to convey through our end monologue piece. There is possible opportunity for performance at the end, as our church does put together productions from time to time.

Anyway, thought of the feminine divine has been prevalent in my mind lately, and moreso, the lack of balance in that I find no masculine divinity. I think this isn't actually true, I just think I've learned to accredit all divinity to the female, the goddess, the mother, as a response to growing up in a patriarchal world. I think one of my big interests right now is finding the balanced masculine and feminine in divinity, and learn to call it as such, if I am already seeing masculine divinity but encircling it into the feminine automatically.

Today's writing exercise was to listen to the first words and then just write for five solid minutes. The writing prompt was "Our mother who art in Heaven, hallowed be thy name." This really threw me up against a wall and I didn't know what my response/feeling was with that one, so this is what I wrote:

Our mother who art in Heaven.
Our mother who art in Heaven.
... art in Heaven?
Our mother who encompasses haven and hell
and beyond
As heaven and hell are only theoretic representations of
Her joy and
Her wrath
Our mother who art in everything.
Our mother who art in everything hallowed be thy presence.
Hallowed be thy presence for She is beyond a name.
How can you name what permeates everything.
How can you name what exists everywhere?
Our mother who art in everything
Our mother who art everywhere
Hallowed be thy presence.
Our father who art in Heaven.
Where is our father if mother is everywhere?
Where is our father if mother is everything?
Is my father also in everything?
Is my father also nameless?
Our father who art..
Our father who art...

Where are you?
Who are you?

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Answering the call

There is not one big cosmic meaning for all, there is only the meaning we each give to our life, an individual meaning, an individual plot, like an individual novel, a book for each person. - Anais Nin

I had a long conversation with one of my best friends last night. We both were exchanging feelings on our current life path and the important things going on in our worlds right now. It was a back and forth of feverish revelations and connecting our own personal dots and making sense of the context of "right now" within our whole lives and the world, it was soul searching together. It was one of the most fulfilling conversations I've had in a while, and within the space of that phone call, something amazing happened. 

She and I were talking, at one point, about the path her life has taken. She's been all over the place, and zoomed in it's all seemed very haphazard and driven by chance, but as we zoomed out on her life we could see how each moment prepared her for the next, and how one location/phase would constantly lend itself to the next, providing preparation and then a vehicle to move (both physically and not) from one space to another. As we were talking about how she was yet again preparing to embark on another relocation and a new adventure, I began to wonder what that must be like. To be able to pick up and go, follow your passion and live with the wisdom and fabulousness of your thirties without being hooked into corporate America or family life. For a split second I wondered what my life would be like if I were in her shoes.

And then it hit me....

I am in her shoes. I am fulfilling my destiny and I am traveling the path I was meant for. Teaching my children, and being open to what they have to teach me. Learning how to be part of a team, which is a focal point of my career life over the past year and a half, learning to establish roots and not run away. How to settle in, settle down. All these things are my path in this incarnation. I strongly believe I must have been more of a wanderer in a past life because of how uncomfortable sitting still can be for me now. I can see clearly that this is what I am meant to learn this time around.  And while my life doesn't involve suitcases or passports, it's definitely an adventure. And a rewarding one. Learning to stand on my own two feet. Learning to embrace and invite solitude. Loving and losing over and over and learning what stopped me from wanting to be alone, subsequently finding the strength to stand alone and to love it.  Learning how powerful my love is, and it's purpose as a mother and how much I have to offer my children, has taught me what I am made of. I have found so much feminine divinity. I have discovered worlds within myself that I never saw. And in that I've learned there is likely much more I've still yet to find. But it has taught me not to ever underestimate what is within me.  Learned that the secret is not trying to balance myself as woman with myself as a mother, but to understand that balance is already there, and these archetypes are not as separate as I once thought. The adventure I am on is learning to see the circle. The chaotic and colorful beautiful swirling inside of the circle. That I am not a woman and a mother, but that I am a Woman Mother.  That I am a Woman Mother Friend Lover Goddess. That all these roles, what the require of me, the resources I find, the love that guides me and the  wisdom I tap into all come from the same source. The Goddess(es). The feminine divine.

Learning to live with all these archetypes existing cohesively as one whole is my purpose right now. That wisdom will lend itself to my next adventure, which I believe has much to do with articulation and giving the gift of emotional communication to those who struggle with it, in one form or another. But we will see. This could always change as I grow and learn about me. The demands of motherhood create a challenge for all women who are mothers. The path I'v been walking from a self sabotaging, self doubting and hopeless person earlier on in life, then to a mother as a teenager and years of figuring out that I am capable of being a good mother and a wise and worthy woman. There was no protected place to learn what I was capable of before I needed to put it into action as a mother. None of us have that place. We all face motherhood with questions and with fears, regardless of the age or financial standing we are situated in at the time we become a mother. And our baggage rears its ugly head as we are faced with our true selves in a much more striking way and asked to be more than we knew we are capable of. I am still learning what I am capable of, and passing it to my children and my friends as I go. As they are doing with me. It became so clear to me last night what an important and adventurous challenge being a Woman Mother really is. 

My message to all the Women Mothers is to realize this within yourselves. To realize you haven't just been charged with the task of feeding your children, buying their clothes and making sure they grow up and stay in school. You've been charged with the quest of learning yourself fully. You've been charged with the quest to tap into the love, wisdom and divinity that is waiting for you to open your eyes and see it. To become more connected to the universe through this. To understand you are a part of everything, and let that "everything" pass through you and to your children, but as it passes through you, pay attention and let it fertilize your own seeds of spirit. And to understand that your children chose you to be born into the world from for a reason. Cosmically you specifically were chosen and they need you. And you also need your children. They will be your biggest teachers, your most arduous challenge and your greatest adventure. They don't have to take away from the woman you are or the person you were inside without them. It doesn't have to be near the sacrifice that you may think, sometimes, that it is. Open your eyes to how much your children can enhance that woman that you are, and expand her beyond who she was. Make her hips fuller, her eyes more open and her mind wiser. Not to mention her heart more capable of love. We have only growth and beauty to gain from realizing what we were called to do. We were called to understand ourselves enough to help growing people understand themselves. We were called to be connected to the world enough to help them understand how connected they are. To understand that these children were not accidentally brought into our lives, even if they were surprises. And there is no adventure or dream they held us back from. There is no life the halted for us. They are the ultimate adventure. They are the dream. And they are the greatest encapsulation of hope and promise, and we've been given a miracle and a divine gift in our charges to guide them. We've been given an honor in that responsibility. We've been asked to be walking goddesses to seek wisdom and protection from. We've been asked to be shamans, angels, psychics, healers and sages. We've been asked to answer to the ultimate calling, and rise to the greatest potential of ourselves.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Where oh where.

Life is a process of becoming, a combination of states we have to go through. Where people fail is that they wish to elect a state and remain in it. This is a kind of death. -Anais Nin

I hate to see someone I love so much only be half of what I've known them to be. It's hard to always listen, to stay firmly planted and be objective when things about a person's current footing in the world is so much different than what I currently see or have seen them to be at some time past. It's worse when this loved one has personally inspired me so much. So I'm just going to vent. 

At the time I met you, I was sleeping. I was walking around living in an idea that wasn't a life or a love or a family. It was an illusion I was spinning, feeling that if I wasn't going to feel personal happiness at least I could bask in the joys of having the world see me as having done so. 

The first day I saw you, it was sunny. From the first five minutes we were friends. You made a face. I laughed. I let down my walls that instant. I walked in the sun and drank coffee, and from day one, I was real. From day one, you were my friend. From day one, you were a kindred and you always got me and I got you. 

As we began to know each other more and more, we got each other more and more. I could run to you with every silly crazy thought in my head because you understood it. Never had I known someone who understood them all the way that you did. You understood me so well that for a time it confused me and made me sad. It made me think this was what I wanted in a partner. These were in the infantile days of my own emotional breakthrough, back before I realized I don't actually want a partner at all. But.. I digress. 

It took a long time for things to craft into the most perfect friendship I've ever known which is why it's so gut wrenching to barely see the you who I love shine through anymore. I know that people get stuck. We all do. And you're entitled to your time in the tar. I get that. I respect that. To hear your tired words, see your tired eyes. To hear the same fears and stories told a thousand ways. It's not that I don't care. It's not that I don't want to listen. It just hurts. 

I miss you. Not your proximity, not your attention or your time but your spirit and your passion. Your words. Your creation of thought, your weaving beautiful thoughts that map things together like mine do making the mental image you see be strikingly similar to mine. And your dark eyes when they twinkle with excitement or mischief or just aren't fucking tired and worried. 

I just miss you. And it's not only you who feels the weight of your lostness. I wish that I could find you right now too.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Robot Valentine

Starting back in 2006, I began creating robot valentines to give to people close to me. I was still a temp in the Flex department at work but because I had a 4x10 schedule (meaning I worked 4 10-hour days at work), my badge allowed me access to the building as early as 6:30 a.m. This worked out well and served me for years because I would get to work super early and walk around to various desks and leave robot valentines cards before anyone else was there. The majority of people knew it was me behind it all, but every year I would single out 5-8 coworkers whom I wasn't necessarily friends with but had interacted with a time or two, just because I wanted to (hopefully) brighten their day with a nice surprise.

Most of these associates never knew who was behind this and I preferred it that way. For me, it made the experience much richer because without fail, I would casually walk by their desk and the valentine I had left in complete secrecy was prominently placed for all to see. I loved having this little secret and I treasured knowing that these various people enjoyed the random surprise.

It occurred to me that after all these years, I'd never given you - my bestest friend - a proper robot valentine. So, without further ado, I gladly, with love and happiness, give you this:

Monday, January 21, 2013

Happiness is not.

Happiness is not elusive
She does not hide, requiring you to open doors looking for her.
Happiness is not jealous.
She does not react to you spending all your time with other emotions.
Happiness is not demanding.
She will not require a laundry list of things to make her stay.
Happiness is not boastful.
She will not kiss and tell, she will not tell everyone that you've found her.
Happiness is not insecure.
Once you see her for who she is, she will not begin to doubt.
Happiness is not outside.
She is sitting right inside of you, comfortable, meditative.
The day you turn inward and see her, embrace her...
Her eyes will light and all she will say is "I'm so happy that you've found me."
Happiness is not possessive.
She will not pull you in her direction if you choose to walk away.
But with all that she is, and all that she is not, why would you?

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Two little girls.

"Clearly, you've been drinking."

This was Julie's response when I texted her and told her I'd like to start up a blog together with her. You see, we used to share a blog when I first moved away from her and our adventures in Maryland back in the year 2001. I remembered how fun it used to be loading up my web browser to see she'd written on our old blog and then to write something of my own. It was something we could create together.

We used to create memories by the truckload. Listening to Abra Moore cleaning her old military house. Failing to see Nelly Furtado although we tried really hard. Laser tag in pigtails. Driving to Georgetown. Smoking cloves. Stopping to buy cartons of milk because Julie could only take pills with milk. Being mommies together. Listening to Disturbd and Linkin Park at the gym. She was the left and and I was the right hand. We were like Bonnie and Clyde except we were both Bonnie and nobody got hurt.

So, now over a decade later, I live in Brooklyn, New York and she lives in Austin-ish, Texas and I miss my friend. Miles and limitations keep us from creating as many memories as I would like. Though she did fly to New York City for my housewarming (apartment warming?) party last year and that was kick ass. But the point here is, I needed to create with Julie again.

We both decided to pick a word that was a central theme for us in the new year and we'd combine them to make our new blog name. Her word was courage. My word was authentic. We realized when we put them together, Courageously Authentic, not only was it a compound of our two words but something really meaningful, and really us. So that worked out well. And here we are again, full circle.

"I'll only do it if you promise to write", she said.

So here I am.