Monday, March 27, 2017

Sometimes it Just Seems to Pour


To be frank, this post was inspired by the fact that it is raining here in Vermont today - and at times seemed to be pouring. It's gray. It's certainly chilly if not cold. It would be easy to let myself feel down, if not outright depressed by the weather. But, I have too much to be thankful for. Family. Friends. A home. Income. Decent and improving health. Clothes to wear that are appropriate for each season. Libraries close by. A terrific local bookstore. Good healthcare practitioners. People who can listen and help me figure out what direction I want to move in, how to proceed.  Federal legislators who have a vision for a better future for everyone.

It can also, seemingly, be pouring not just physically but also metaphorically. It can be "pouring" so much that it clouds our vision, makes it difficult to see our way. There may seem to be no light or only blurred light. It may be hard to think this, but there is always some light, even the darkest night has starlight. There may be clouds on a dark night obscuring the light - but the light is there none the less. One of the meditations images in Opening the Heart: Meditations on How to Be (here) is: 

Floods, famine, war, racism, sexism, homophobia, hatred of someone else's religion all exist. People not caring about the environment, only about what they can extract from Mother Earth are still operating in the world. I think that, despite all this, we can hold onto the vision of light entering all of our hearts, minds, and souls. And, I do mean everyone, not just ourselves and our family and friends. I mean everyone. 

I wrote this poem inspired by this meditation image: 

Starlight on the Darkest Nights

Sit with the dark.
Breathe with the dark.
Don't fight the dark.
Let the dark calm your
mind, your soul.

Vision can clear in the dark.
What is over there:
dancing, twirling, calling you?

Is it starlight?
Is it hope?

©2017 Kathryn L. Samuelson

Monday, March 20, 2017

What Needs to be Pruned

I will admit upfront that I am not a gardener. I have lived in condominiums and apartments my whole adult life, although I do remember doing a bit of planting when I was a child. I also had some planter boxes on the deck of an apartment I used to live in. I have a flower garden out front of my current home that was created by someone else. But all my gardening is very minor gardening. What I understand is that, for crops to grow abundantly and for flowers to flourish, we need to prune back plants, deadhead flowers, thin planted seedlings, and pull weeds. When fall comes I now know to prune back most of the plants in my current garden so that they will be healthy and abundant in the summer. In other words, prune, prune prune. 

I don't think that pruning is an activity that is limited to just gardens. I have moved a number of times, and each time, I gave away items that I no longer needed or hadn't been using for quite some time. I have been slowly doing even more here in my current home even though it was, relatively, not that long since I moved in. I finally looked at the stem ware glasses that I have moved 3 times and asked myself why I was holding on to them. They have gone to the charity resale shop. I continue to donate books to the library. 

Then what are the inner things that I can prune out of my life? What old, stale emotions and energies that I have been clinging to can I let go of? This takes diving, so to speak, into our deepest selves. One of the meditations in Opening the Heart: Meditations on How to Be speaks to this. (here

The expanded text in Part 2 of the book says in part: "The knowledge that you need to exist in the world in the new/old way is there in your deepest self." Part of this knowledge, I think, is what is no longer serving us and can, thus, be pruned out of our lives. I'd say that what no longer serves me is anger that interferes with action; fear; lack of compassion; disappointment in myself; disappointment that others don't do what I want or live up to my expectations; old hurts; and probably many more old, stuck emotions and energies. 

Delving deep may need to be done over and over to achieve as much clearing out as we want to achieve, to be able to put the pruned material on the "bonfire" where it belongs. I think that delving deep to prune can be different for everyone and different at times for everyone. It might be meditation, reiki or other energy work. It might first be changing our diets and exercising more so that we are healthier, which then allows us to concentrate on emotional and psychic health. It might be a combination of many things as once. 

One way I pruned was to move from Massachusetts to Vermont as my energy became stuck over time in Massachusetts. I found a doctor after moving who referred me to a Naturopath. The three of us are working on boosting my thyroid function, which gives me more energy to work, to rid myself of more things that I don't need in my life. See how this happens? 

And, I think that by pruning in our own lives we can have a ripple effect in the world. By becoming the person we'd like to see operate in the world, we can change the world one person at a time. Who knows what the synergistic effect of this will be? An amazing one I hope.

Monday, March 13, 2017

Be the Beacon

I thought for awhile that I would be writing another book on the order of my book, Opening the Heart: Meditations on How to Be. (here) I finally decided that I created this idea rather than receiving the idea of what the new book should be. I had, however, created a number of new meditation sayings for the book that might never be. One is:

                                           Find the beacon within. Light the world.

Image result for royalty free candle images

Once we go within and find the beacon, the question is, what do we do with that beacon? The saying answers that: we light the world. I think that the other thing that we do is then visualize connecting with other beacons. As the picture above shows, when we find and bring forth the beacon of light and connect it to other beacons, it multiplies the effect. 

I believe that meditation, contemplation, visualization, and possibly most important, listening to what our hearts say leads us to how we should be in the world and what our tasks in the world are. 

Creating circles of light and compassion can lead us in the direction of transforming society into one of light and compassion. Light (knowledge?) can keep away the dark (fear? anger? hatred? greed?). I hope and work towards being a beacon. Join me, please.

Find the beacon. Let the light shine.  

Monday, March 6, 2017

Seeds are Being Sown; Things are Being Pollinated

I looked through my photographs this morning and saw this one of a bee that I took at Kilowatt Park North in Wilder, Vermont. Yes, I took it later last summer, and it is now only March. This picture, however, reminds me that the time to plant seeds in the physical world here in the Northern Hemisphere is approaching. People are looking at seed catalogs and ordering them, whether to start in green houses or wait until the last frost date passes. This happens sooner in the South than here in Vermont. Once the plants are blooming, we will see bees moving from flower to flower pollinating as they go. This cycle will continue as long as there are seeds to be planted and pollinators out there pollinating.

What in the world does this have to do with things on the human spectrum of life? Well, it strikes me that there are people who are the seeders: the seeders of love, change, kindness, and compassion. There are people who are the seeders of standing up and fighting for something they believe in; people who are seeders of love, light and laughter. Then, there are those people who find these seeds planted within themselves, who nurture and grow these seeds. Others may, in fact, become weeders. Weeding out hate, fear, greed, and anger in themselves and in their communities so that love, change, kindness, and compassion can become more firmly planted.

Then comes the time to weed as well. It is all intertwined. We can, if as more and more of us become seeders, pollinators, or weeders (or sometimes two or three of these), bring things into flower. This flowering can then be gifted onward, hopefully inspiring others to become seeders and pollinators, inspiring more beauty, more of the change and transformation that many of us believe is not only needed but is coming. 

I think it is important to keep in mind the vision of green shoots sprouting up from the seeds that are being planted. To keep seeing those shoots growing and growing into full flower so that pollination can take place and more seeds be planted. The weeding, of course, is as important as the seeding and nurturing. If left unattended, hate, greed, fear, and anger can choke out the flowering. 

I hope that I am at least a seeder, and aspire to be a weeder and a pollinator.