Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Spring Equinox Ceremony

       Since the beginning of Time, people have performed ceremony and rituals to create bridges between earth and heaven. The symbolism used is understood by both human and spiritual participants of the ceremony. The energy created by the rituals can affect transformation on multiple levels of existence, from the physical world we live in, on through the dimensions of nature elementals and angels. 

       Last night my friends, Marilyn and Chester, joined me in a Spring Equinox Ceremony, to release the old, embrace the new, and mark our intentions that this new year will be one in which peace, balance, harmony, truth, love, integrity, and compassion will rule the hearts of all beings on earth.

       We began the ceremony by naming and writing down the old ways that must be released: violence, oppression, negativity, injustice, etcetera! We then burned our scraps of paper to symbolize the release of these evils. 

       You can see some of the symbols we used for the ceremony, including an agate egg, yellow flowers, and green and yellow candles: green for growth and healing, yellow for new energies and new beginnings.

       After our prayer to the Great Creator, we wrote down our intentions for the coming year and placed these pieces of paper inside of our green and yellow plastic eggs. To these intentions we added offerings of dirt from Mother Earth, white pine needles to symbolize peace, and a variety of herbs and spices to symbolize love, healing, and new beginnings. We will keep these eggs in our homes, where our intentions can germinate until the Summer Solstice when we will bury the contents in the ground, where they will continue to grow.

       After this part of the ceremony we participated in a guided meditation, followed by a snack of sunflower seeds, almonds, and chocolate eggs - all symbols of new beginnings!

A verse from the Solar Wave prayer that we read: 

Dear Great Creator:
We have new eyes to see as you see.
We have new ears to hear as you hear.
We have new hearts to love as you love.
We have new minds to understand as you understand. 

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Thursday, March 15, 2012

The Lord's Prayer - Emily's Version

Our Divine Father and Mother,
whose name is Love:

We give thanks for your blessing of the kingdom within
And help us to know it is here and now
when we choose your will over our own.

Thank you for our daily nourishment
of body and spirit.

Help us to forgive everyone who has ever hurt us in any way,
And thank you for forgiving us for those times we have forgotten
our Oneness with you and your creation.

Keep us ever mindful of our purpose,
to help bring your kingdom to every dweller on earth;
let us not be diverted by selfish desires.

For Love is the ruler of the Universe,
the creator, sustainer, and substance of us all,
now and forever.


Sunday, March 11, 2012

Flowers and Fairies

These crocuses first opened in my yard on March 8th. Today, a beautiful warm spring day, more crocuses opened and the honey bees came to visit! I'm sure I've never had crocuses open this early in March before - not since I moved from Tennessee to central New York 24 years ago. We are expecting a whole week of warm weather now, and some people are worried that the sap won't run in the maple trees and we won't have fresh syrup this year. I do love maple syrup as much as anyone, but I love spring flowers more, so I just can't feel too bad about it.

This afternoon I went out in the sunshine to gather the dead branches that collected around the yard during the winter, and to clean up the dead leaves around the crocuses, hoping that I might spot a fairy. No such luck, but it's comforting to know that many people have seen fairies. I have read too many first-person accounts of fairy sightings not to believe in their existence, and so I can hope that I will see one someday, too! 

   illustration by Cicely Mary Barker

Right now I am reading The Real World of Fairies: A First-Person Account by Dora van Gelder, which says: "Love for flowers and a conscious invitation to the fairies to help is a way to come to know them and perhaps even to see them. It is love of living things which is the great bridge between the two kingdoms." So while I tend my flower gardens I invite the fairies to help me build a bridge between my world and theirs. Even though I haven't seen them yet, I think they sometimes answer the questions I ask myself while I'm observing nature. For instance, today I noticed a couple of daffodil shoots poking up through the brown leaves in an area where I know I planted lots of bulbs. I wondered why these two were coming up so far ahead of the others, and immediately the answer came: These two are just more eager to come out than the others! They are willing to take the risk that it may freeze again while the other daffodils would rather play it safe. Apparently each flower has an individual personality, something that never occurred to me before! (I'm not really sure if it's the flower or the flower fairy that decides when to emerge, but whoever it is, some like to come out sooner than others!)

Another interesting observation I made today was a little clump of crocuses blooming way in the back corner of the back yard, quite far from where I had planted the bulbs. The neighborhood squirrels enjoy digging up crocus bulbs and transplanting them in odd places. While it's annoying to have my carefully designed plantings re-arranged, it's also a delight to go out in the spring and see what nature has done all on her own, with the help of her creatures, the fairies, and the elements. Later in the spring or summer I will probably discover two or three flowers that seeded themselves from someone else's garden, and I will find out which plants the deer have a yen for this year. 

Of course I always eagerly anticipate the arrival of the new flowers I planted bulbs for in the fall. Last October I put a few of my daffodil bulbs in my neighbor's yard, and I can't wait to see the reaction of these friends who have always admired my spring flowers but never planted bulbs of their own. Bulbs are such amazing, miraculous things! How could anyone plant one of those plain, brown objects, see its flower bloom in the spring, and not KNOW with absolute certainty that this is the work of Divine Love? 

In reading The Door of Everything, I learned that we humans are like flower bulbs ourselves. Ruby Nelson compares us to tomato seeds and chrysalises, waiting to turn into tomatoes or butterflies. Flower bulbs and acorns offer the same kind of imagery. We just have no idea what magnificent beings we are going to turn into, but the promise is in the world all around us if we just use our eyes and don't take it all for granted. Spending time in nature - appreciating, observing, tending, and preserving - is a way to build the bridge that will take us from our bulb-like life to a life of beauty, peace, and love.

Fairy Bridge near Kewaigue

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

The Door of Everything

I have just finished reading The Door of Everything by Ruby Nelson and I am in absolute awe over the beautiful way this little book presents spiritual truth and wisdom. When I say "little" I mean it - the book is 4"x6" and 180 pages. It's size and simple message are part of its charm. I have been feeling confused and overwhelmed by the enormous number of instructions, meditations, transmissions, and rituals being offered by numerous people of good intentions, showing us the way to prepare ourselves for ascension. Still stuck in my 3-D existence, I have only so much time and energy for these endeavors, and they are all so appealing, How do I choose?

Ruby's method is simple and straight-forward: "Love, praise, and gratitude, arising from your heart center in silent expectancy, are the three Ascension Attitudes, those focused attitudes of mind that exalt your feelings toward the Christhood level." (p. 109) These three attitudes are the keys to the Door of Everything, also known as the Kingdom of Heaven.

What's interesting about Ruby's book is that it is copyrighted 1963. This was long before the dawning of the "New Age" and its many references to ascension, the Law of Attraction, Oneness, and the vibratory nature of all things; and yet all of these concepts and other "new" ideas are presented here with easily understood illustrations. Also remarkable is the fact that I have searched for Ruby Nelson online and I cannot find her. She does not have a website or a bio or a Facebook page. Her book can be read free-of-charge online: The Door of Everything. She is not trying to promote herself in any way.

The book was written as if the words came directly from the Creator, and I am quite convinced that they flowed from Ruby's higher self onto the page. The only concept that seems more 1963 than divine in origin is her reference to the "Father Consciousness" in everyone, but she also speaks of our Mother-Father God. Whether we refer to our higher consciousness as Father, Mother, Christ consciousness, or something else, this is the spirit of everything - the Love and Light that are all that really is - that stand knocking on the other side of the door that only we can open. We open this door with love, gratitude, and praise. And with faith.

Ruby's Christ consciousness tells us that we will have trouble passing through the door to the kingdom of heaven if we cannot break our habit of judging by appearances. It appears that sickness, poverty, and death are real components of life on earth. We see them, we believe in them, and so they are. Jesus said: "Be ye perfect, even as your Father in Heaven is perfect." But we don't believe it's possible to be perfect. Jesus wasn't serious, was he? And when he said "You will do greater things than I have done," he couldn't have really meant it! And yet Jesus frequently pointed out the power of faith: "Your faith has made you whole . . . . If you have the faith of a mustard seed you will be able to move mountains."

I do believe that my true nature is divine, whole, and eternal. I know that disease and old age are not part of the divine plan for humanity. And yet, every morning I wake up feeling stiff with arthritic pain - sometimes with tendonitis in a foot or an arm. As Ruby says, belief is a necessary step toward faith, but faith is stronger. When I have the same faith in my divine being as I have that the sun will come up tomorrow morning, then I will wake up whole and perfect.

RE: faith, Ruby's Christ consciousness says: "Signs of my inner heavenly kingdom do not precede your comprehension of truth, they follow it. Signs do not precede your faith, they also follow that." (p. 134)

How difficult it is to have faith in something BEFORE we see or experience it. This is why so few people have passed through the door to the kingdom of everything. Most Christians think they need only believe that Jesus performed miracles and returned from the dead. They do not believe that he was demonstrating how we can accomplish the same and even greater things. Believing that nothing is impossible is the first step toward faith.

Ruby's Christ consciousness tells us that faith will come when we spend time in the stillness where we can hear the small, quiet voice of God. She says you cannot "reach a state of total stillness where mighty faith takes over if others all around you are promoting their false gods of imperfection. Evict these noises from the privacy of your closet and listen only to the words of those who have discovered the one God of perfect Being." (p. 151) I find that others around me are CONSTANTLY promoting the negative side of life they see as real. I have yet to spend enough time in the silence, promoting the perfection of God's world, so that faith will take over.

Ruby points out that we see proof of faith's power whenever we believe we're getting sick and old, and we do; whenever we believe we won't have enough of what we need for an abundant life, and we are lacking. It is up to us to change our faith in the imperfect life to a faith in the perfect life that God wants us to have.

I can think of a few times when my faith in the unseen manifested something good. Twenty-seven years ago, when my husband and I had been trying unsuccessfully for a baby for four years, we applied for adoption, and were promised a healthy infant within a year. This promise gave me so much faith in the wonderful gift to come that I became pregnant and gave birth to a healthy baby girl nine months later. Five years ago I was struggling with the dilemma of finding fulfilling work. One day I wrote in my journal, "This is the day that I will discover the work I can do that will use my gifts and talents." I must have made this declaration with more faith than usual, because it was indeed the day that I learned about the Celebrant Foundation & Institute where I would study and become certified as a life-cycle and wedding celebrant.

You may have had some similar experiences that demonstrate how faith can make things happen. Ruby says: "Faith is your magnetic force and prayer illuminates the way." (p. 176) I am praying that my faith will grow strong enough that I will be able to open the Door to Everything and walk into that wonderful state of being where I will be one with everything - which, as Ruby says is not many things, but One. "Everything is Love" and "Love contains Everything." Our true, eternal life begins on the other side of the door. And "Life is Light and Light is Love." (p. 180) I believe this with all my heart and soul. All I need now is FAITH!

For more on this topic see: Advent: Waiting for the Door to Open

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