“If we surrendered to Earth’s intelligence, we could rise up rooted like trees.”—Rainer Maria Rilke
You know that space when you are laying in bed, all comfy and relaxed, not quite asleep and yet not quite awake either?
That in-between space where you are drifting in and out of conscious reality?
You’ve let go of the day and are not thinking about the future and instead you are simply present, warm and comfortable and feeling sleep beginning to wash over you in delicious waves. You know that feeling right? That’s the space where Mugwort often comes to speak to me.
Her words weave around in my head, spiraling through my consciousness and I am just barely paying attention.
So she gets a little louder and my breath deepens some and I feel myself being pulled back into my body, the words on repeat fending off the promise of sleep, so I roll over and write them down in an effort to release them.
Then, getting comfortable again, I begin to drift off only to find myself spiraling around another phrase and then another...repeating the cycle until finally sleep takes hold. It certainly does not make for a restful night!
And this has been happening a lot with Mugwort (INTEGRATION) this Moon Cycle, (during the night and during the day), as she is my Soulflower guide for the transition from 2020 into the New Year.
I've been thinking about how deeply disruptive this year has been on so many levels for EVERY SINGLE one of us. From the despair of losing a loved one to the fragility of our economy and break down of our societal systems and structures—this year has shaken us all out of the many deeply entrenched cycles and certainties that we have perhaps taken for granted our whole lives.
Normally everyone would be running around from party to party and uber busy and overstretched and yet this year, (as uncomfortable, painful and in many cases tragic as it is), we have an opportunity to actually honor this naturally inward time.
On a level that we cannot easily comprehend or accept, this experience we are collectively having is simply a part of the natural cycle of life.
Our “normal” patterns of life are no longer normal and yet I believe they haven't actually been "normal" for a very long time!
Surrendering to Earth's intelligence we can see around us that Nature is resting. In the natural cycle of things, this is winter. This is the DREAMTIME. The natural time to go deep within, to rest and integrate all that we have reaped during the year.
For our human journey we can certainly celebrate the promise of a New Year, but we also need to reconnect with the wisdom of the dark and allow time for everything we have learned over the previous year to slowly compost and integrate in order to ready ourselves for a new growing season.
The Earth shows us that the fundamental nature of the universe tends towards balance. But given the complexity of life itself, balance is not a static concept, or even an achievable end goal and is instead an ever evolving, conscious and unconscious, spiraling dance of awareness and growth. Within and without.
When something is out of balance, eventually (and truly this can take hundreds or thousands of years), Mother Earth somehow always steps in to restore balance.
And so, as humans we like to meddle with this system. Tinker with it and even try to control it because, of course, we think we know better.
We have this idea even, especially as we begin a New Year, that we can separate and get rid of the bits of ourselves and our experiences that we don’t like. That we can let them go and start over with a set of resolutions that will fix what we perceive is out of balance or wrong...except that the ritual of New Year’s resolutions laughably never really affects real change and we return to “business as normal” within a couple of weeks. Kind of like using chemical fertilizer—it provides a quick fix but does not support healthy, sustainable growth.
What Mugwort is helping me to remember, to integrate, is that labeling pieces of ourselves and our experiences as good or bad, on a personal or collective level, is not super helpful when we can’t simply dispose of the parts of ourselves that we don’t like.
Mugwort wants us to honor ALL that we are and ALL aspects of life and death as the gifts that they are for our personal and collective evolution, even when it doesn’t feel like it.
We have to recognize that the dark is equally important as is the light, for without one the other cannot exist. Right?
We can’t ignore, avoid, sanitize, or kill what we find scary or uncomfortable because we simply cannot comprehend the consequences of our actions on the whole. In this great web we are a part of we literally cannot see all of the connections and consequences of our choices, or the way our choices, however small, affect the whole. We have to just trust that they do, and there is great freedom in that.
When we understand that everything is part of a much greater plan than our egos can conceive, it becomes easier to detach from the judgement and instead allow each and every experience, however we label it, to just be part of the amazing flow of life.
So for deep and lasting change, for strong sturdy growth, and for a healthy and thriving world, we absolutely have to embrace and integrate everything, EVERYTHING, as aspects of who we are and All That Is.
No judgement necessary. Just acceptance.
This is Unity Consciousness.
Our external battle of good against evil is rendered obsolete when we finally realize the battle is an inner one.
So this past year I went deep. Really deep. Examining my darkest fears AND my deepest desires and learning to surrender to the flow of life that I am just an infinitesimal part of. Not easy for a former control freak that likes to plan and prepare for all eventualities.
Remembering the truth of who you are and actually choosing to live in and from this truth are completely separate challenges!
Mugwort tells me that the more love and light I feel within me, the more capacity for dark also. Whatever is within is also without. And the more love and light and hope I feel, the more dark and fear and separation I also have to witness and hold...integrate.
As I “awaken” or expand further into the “truth” of our human experience the more I find that the concept of truth even is truly subjective. And the truth is we are always expanding and evolving...growing ourselves through our next thought and the next and the next.
“And so,” says Mugwort, “you are everything and you get to choose where you focus your attention.”
What do I choose to create? What do I choose to experience? What beliefs and thoughts do I choose to attach to explain how I feel?
Free will in action I guess!
So as we transition into a new year, instead of resolutions, I am allowing myself plenty of time to slip into that liminal, in-between space, to feel into the depth and darkness of my own soul and remember that spark which nourishes me, which brings me joy and which connects me to the whole—because THAT is what I choose to grow more of in my life.
This is not the same as setting external goals...but more about cultivating a deep inner awareness...which is perhaps why Mugwort is such a perfect ally for this process. She whispers to me in symbols and metaphors, dancing between everyday easily understandable and dreamlike mystery. She is loving yet standoffish, supportive yet always asks me to figure everything out for myself...to dream into it.
Mugwort reminds me that we literally give birth to our desires.
Inspiration arises deep within, gestating in our dream state, growing slowly into conscious thoughts that eventually express through our words and conversations and finally we get to choose to tend them into form...or not!
A beautiful and mysterious dance between the unseen and the seen. Between the dark and the light.
This act of creating—of creation—is nothing short of miraculous!
We get to participate in an ongoing spiral dance blending the old with the new and this process is certainly not defined or confined by dates on a calendar.
Every new day, every moment even, is a gift of a new beginning and we always have a choice whether or not we desire to tend to the garden of our souls.
So I ask you, what do you want your garden, your world, to feel like?
Let’s begin there.
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There is nothing like pain to help us understand what it means to be present and in this dense world of the physical, pain is a most powerful teacher. Have you seen the thorns on a Hawthorn tree?