May
16
2022

Full Moon Revelations: Ancestors Speaking in Flowers

For Seekers – Moonthly Renewal – Practices for Soul & Spirit – Sanctuary

The height of this moonth’s cycle comes with the full moon arriving overnight tonight, the 15th to the 16th (exact at 12:14am ET on the 16th), and offers a revelation about how the lunar energies initiated on the April 30th  new moon are developing. The new moon, guided by its association with the Teacher face of the Hierophant invited us to expand our understanding of who our teachers are. Out of our full moon revelations about this developing energy, we are issued an invitation to return a gift to the world in the final weeks of the lunar cycle.  

The exact moment of the moon’s fullness comes in the sign of Scorpio associated with the Tarot’s Death card. As I wisdom wandered through the last few weeks, I encountered a tiny but powerful teacher in a spring ephemeral with a message about Death. Here is the story. 

Wandering along the Mill River pathway, I encountered my first flowering Trout Lilies of the season. They raised their yellow petals just above the dead leaf litter on a turning of the path. I paused, then pulled from my notebook one of the handful of Tarot cards I carried.

The Ancestor emerged and I felt a wave of that deepest kind of knowing wash over me. Of course, the Ancestor who has traveled through Death is the mirror to this miracle of a spring’s flowering. All life today comes from a passing away of what has come before. The dead leaves become the soil. The soil is the breakdown of all plants and animals, even us humans in our bones and ash, the flesh released. The release from one form is the beginning of becoming another.

And here were the Ancestors shape shifting into Trout Lilies. I stood in the circle of their power. 

The specific Tarot card I drew was from the Minoan Tarot by Ellen Lorenzi-Prince. It is number 13 of the Major Arcana, usually named Death. In this version of the card the connection between the living and the dead is highlighted. The living descendant is shown as a small figure raising up a bowl in offering to the larger figure of the Ancestor.

Ellen describes the ritual depicted as “seeking to bridge the gap of silence and of breath, and the gap between glory and grief.”  She says of the Ancestors, “If they would speak, one could learn the reality of the past, and understand how to better live in the present.” 

Standing in their presence, I felt the Ancestors were speaking through the flowering of the Trout Lilies. What were they saying? Before I tell you my thoughts, pause and think about what you see in this image of flower and card and leaf. What might the ancestors be saying to you?

What I “heard” was:

Grow. 

Rise up out of what is dying in your world—because Death is always happening—and dare to work to make it beautiful. 

Ellen has also offered wonderful wisdom on Love. In the voice of Freya, the Norse Goddess of Love and Beauty, she tells us, “Love is power made beautiful.

Trout Lilies would seem to have very little power. They rise just a few inches from earth and live for only  a few days. But their power is awesome, they take death, re-shape it, and make it beautiful.

Our world is breaking apart. The rubble, real and symbolic, is the leaf litter in which we stand. But the Ancestors implore us still to rise, take the rubble, re-make it into beauty.

This one example of the experiences I have when wisdom wandering. If you’d like a container of support for finding your own revelations in the meeting and mixing of the natural world and divinatory tools, you are invited to Walking the Ways of the Summer Light. We’ll be wandering, connecting to nature, divining, and herb crafting in the places where we live. Then gather virtually for ritual and sharing our experiences. The retreat runs for 6 weeks from Sunday, May 23rd to Friday, July 1.

In this 6 year (2+0+2+2=6 which is the number of the Lovers in the Tarot’s Major Arcana), our guide for the season is Love in all its forms and phases. Find out more and register on the overview page

To encourage revelation about this moonth’s themes, you are invited to one, some, or all of these practices:

~ Moon bathe by sitting or lying under a window or outside on the ground. Let go of your thoughts and soak in the light.

~ Take out any reading or your reflections from the new moon and look at them in a new light. How does your understanding of the cards shift now that time has passed and light has shifted? (If you haven’t done a reading yet, no problem, just do it now under the light of the full moon. You can trythe one from the new moon.)

~ Bring out your Hierophant/Teacher and Death cards from your Tarot deck and connect them to your new moon reading / reflections. You could place/imagine these cards on either side of your reading or above and below, and then look at how they add meaning into the story your original cards offered you.

~ Reflect on questions such as: What does Death have to teach me? How can I bring Life out of Death? Who/what can be my teacher of the Death to Life transformation? What teachings are my ancestors offering me? How can I open to receive their message? How can I act on their message? You could, of course, pull cards as responses to any of these questions. You may want to engage in Visio Divina to find the layers of wisdom within the cards.

When you are done, remember to offer gratitude for what you have received. Consider what gift you now want to return to the world. Pulling a card for guidance on the gift is always a fine thing to do. In the coming weeks and before the moon returns to dark around May 27th offer your gift to the world.

May
9
2022

Speaking Through Flowers

For Seekers – Practices for Soul & Spirit – Seasonal Observances

Wandering along the Mill River pathway in mid-April, I encountered my first flowering Trout Lilies of the season. They raised their yellow petals just above the dead leaf litter on a turning of the path. I paused, then pulled from my notebook one of the handful of Tarot cards I carried. 

The Ancestor emerged and I felt a wave of that deepest kind of knowing wash over me. Of course, the Ancestor who has traveled through Death is the mirror to this miracle of a spring’s flowering. All life today comes from a passing away of what has come before. The dead leaves become the soil. The soil is the breakdown of all plants and animals, even us humans in our bones and ash, the flesh released. The release from one form is the beginning of becoming another. 

And here were the Ancestors shape shifting into Trout Lilies. I stood in the circle of their power. 

The specific Tarot card I drew was from the Minoan Tarot by Ellen Lorenzi-Prince. It is number 13 of the Major Arcana, usually named Death. In this version of the card the connection between the living and the dead is highlighted. The living descendant is shown as a small figure raising up a bowl in offering to the larger figure of the Ancestor. 

Ellen describes the ritual depicted as “seeking to bridge the gap of silence and of breath, and the gap between glory and grief.”  She says of the Ancestors, “If they would speak, one could learn the reality of the past, and understand how to better live in the present.” 

Standing in their presence, I felt the Ancestors were speaking through the flowering of the Trout Lilies. What were they saying? Before I tell you my thoughts, pause and think about what you see in this image of flower and card and leaf. What might the ancestors be saying to you?

What I “heard” was: 

Grow. 

Rise up out of what is dying in your world—because Death is always happening—and dare to work to make it beautiful. 

Ellen has also offered wonderful wisdom on Love. In the voice of Freya, the Norse Goddess of Love and Beauty, she tells us, “Love is power made beautiful.” 

Trout Lilies would seem to have very little power. They rise just a few inches from earth and live but  a few days. But their power is awesome, they take death, re-shape it, and make it beautiful.

Our world is breaking apart. The rubble, real and symbolic, is the leaf litter in which we stand. But the Ancestors implore us still to rise, take the rubble, re-make it into beauty.

This one example of the experiences I have when wisdom wandering. If you’d like a container of support for finding your own revelations in the meeting and mixing of the natural world and divinatory tools, you are invited to Walking the Ways of the Summer Light. We’ll be wandering, connecting to nature, divining, and herb crafting in the places where we live. Then gather virtually for ritual and sharing our experiences. The retreat runs for 6 weeks from Sunday, May 23rd to Friday, July 1.

In this 6 year (2+0+2+2=6 which is the number of the Lovers in the Tarot’s Major Arcana), our guide for the season is Love in all its forms and phases. Find out more and register on the overview page.

 

May
7
2022

Wisdom Wanders

For Seekers – Practices for Soul & Spirit – Seasonal Observances – Tarot

Wisdom Wanders support you to attune to elemental wisdom, articulate the questions that are most important to ask right now, and, within Walking the Ways of the Summer Light, offer a seasonal practice to tend your soul. You can, of course, wisdom wander at any time of year. Also the practice can be modified to be a Big Sit where you don’t move your body, but let your eyes and senses wander.

There are no rules for a Wisdom Wander, but this flow is offered as a jumping off point for your own designs. But remember to follow where ever your senses lead you.

Selecting Your Place: You don’t have to go anywhere special for a Wisdom Wander. Your backyard might provide all the wonder you need.  But to vary your views, you might seek out places that put you in touch the weekly elemental focus. A place where you can touch bare ground or stone for Earth. A hill or mountain top to feel the Air and be close to birds, and a windy urban avenue could do the same. If you can, traveling to a large body of water or the ocean for a Water Wisdom Wander would be appropriate, or just wander on a rainy day. The Fire week of the Walking the Ways e-treat comes during the period of longest days so anywhere on a sunny day will do, or build a bonfire to contemplate its flame.

Separating From the Everyday: You may want to enact a small ritual of leaving behind all your responsibilities, worries, and cares. You could visualize putting them into a box. If any critical voices start to speak, just assure them you’ll be back; you are only going for a walk.  Can you leave your cell behind? Or at least put it into airplane mode.

Travel Light But Bring What You Need: Remember to take care of you body: water? sun screen? good shoes?. Remember any ritual or creativity needs: tiny notebook and pen? drawing materials? camera? Cards from a Tarot or oracle deck are excellent companions that we work with in Walking the Ways. Bring it all on one Wander. Bring nothing on another.

Set an Intention: An overall intention of the Walking the Ways Wisdom Wanders is to seek out and be open to the questions that speak to our souls. One of those questions collected will focus the more directed pilgrimage journey that is part of the final week of Walking the Ways. You may have a personal intention for your wander.

Invite / Select / Welcome your Way Showers / Inquisitors / Guides for the Day’s Wandering:  Because the language of nature and the elements is not immediately apparent to us humans, we can ask for help from the Tarot or oracles – or if you know more about natural processes, those observations can you learn more about Tarot or oracles.  You may have a relationship with a wisdom figure(s) represented on a Tarot or oracle card and want to select it.  You may let who ever needs to come emerge from a face-down draw. Spend some time meeting the one(s) who emerge to travel with you. I often work with 4 or so guides / cards in a wander.

Wander:

  • Be open to whatever draws your attention and spend time there. Pause. Look. Listen.
  • If you would like to engage with an area or a plant, greet it, ask its permission to approach and receive its response. If allowed to approach, do so respectfully; engage your sense to receive the messages and questions offered.
  • You might select one of your guides – by chance or choice – to come and be with you in the places of pause and contemplation. Consider how the place and the guide fit together.
  • When you have finished, don’t forget to offer gratitude before you move on.  You might leave a strand of your hair as a gift. Or perhaps you have planned ahead and brought a small natural object to leave as a sign of gratitude.

Be Open to Creative Urges: The earth is busy creating in cooperation with the summer sun.  How might you mimic this creativity to learn its magic? Bring out your notebook or artists tools. Gather loose elements of the earth (rocks, fallen petals, twigs, feathers) and arrange them purposefully. Your guides might like to be placed within your creation. You might want to document with a photo that becomes your memento… and then let all the elements return to lie on the earth as they were. Leave No Trace is a good ethic to follow.

Return:  Notice when and where you are passing from your place of wandering into the more human world. You might pause, offer some gratitude, or say a prayer at this point.

Reflect: You may want to just sit or to journal or draw.  Let the experience seep into you.  Let some insights emerge.  Connect with your guide; have a chat about what you experienced together.

Gathering Questions: While on the Wander or just afterward, you might just blurt out or free writing all the questions that surface.  Spend some time with your guides listening with your imagination to the questions they would ask you if they could speak aloud. Contemplate your memento as if it were a Tarot card and let it offering you questions. Sometime later in the week, you might want to hone and shift through your questions.  This can be like the process of creating questions to take to a Tarot reading. Here are the prompts I send to people ahead of my Tarot consultations to get their questions percolating:

  • Questions that yield the most freedom and possibility most often include HOW and WHAT. For example:  How can I ….?  How have I ….?  In what ways ….?  What do I most need to pay attention to now?  What will support me to …?
  • Questions that can be fruitful in specific circumstances often include WHY, WHERE, and WHO. For example:  Where in my life have I ….?  Who can best support me in doing …?  Who is challenging me ….? [Be open to the answer not being a human that you know!]  Why am I really doing this (i.e. what is underneath the surface)?
  • WHICH limits you to particular options already determined. If you are still in an early stage of decision making, it is probably too early for a WHICH question.  If you have been working seeking an answer for a long time and feel clear that a decision rests between a set number of options, then WHICH may be fruitful.
  • YES / NO questions are not generative. But if you are burnt out on generating ideas and are ready to trust the message that comes through the cards, this just might be the kind of question that you need.

Cultivate Patience: Each Wisdom Wander is an invitation to step out of the demands of time, and the whole flow toward the Solstice extends an invitation to be free of knowing the answers but instead opening to the questions. The words of the poet Rilke cheer us in this work:

Be patient toward all that is unsolved

in your heart and try to love the questions themselves

like locked rooms and like books that are written

in a very foreign tongue.

Acknowledgements:  This process is most directly influenced by my work with Joanna Powell Colbert and her Gaian and Herbcrafter Tarots, and Mellissae Lucia and her Oracle of Initiation James Wells’ wisdom on question generation inspired the question asking prompts. All my work is influenced by Rachel Pollack and her Shining Tribe is a great deck to wander with. 

Registration for the 2022 retreat-in-everyday life of Walking the Ways of the Summer Light is now open. We begin with an orientation call on Sunday, May 22nd that is open to all; all details are on the registration page.  

Apr
30
2022

Moonthly Musings and Reading: The Practice of Natural Love

For Seekers – Moonthly Renewal – Practices for Soul & Spirit – Sanctuary

From my e-newsletter introduction – 

It’s a new day, it’s a new moon, it’s an eclipse. 

Eclipses interrupt the usual dance of the sun, moon, and earth. During an eclipse, a shadow is created by blocking the usual flow of light. Stepping out of the ordinary into this strange light compels us to look again, to think anew about what we thought we knew. Shadow exposes shadow. And when we recognize that something we see no longer serves, it’s time to break the pattern, heal the damage, set in motion the transformation.

The Tarot correspondences to this eclipsing new moon are all connected to the earth element inviting breakdowns and breakthroughs in our relationship with the natural world.

Maybe we are being called to fall in love with nature.

The German philosopher and biologist Andreas Weber rin an interview on To the Best of Our Knowledge  offered a description of love as an natural process:

I’m saying that ecosystems are love processes. But it’s not just saying, “Oh look at this nature, this is all love.” But if we talk about mutuality, if we talk about ecosystems and our place in them, we would do well to consider all this as being a practice of love. 

And what is a practice of love?

We can go back to the idea that no individual is able to exist only as itself — to be self-desiring or self-striving. You always need others. And you also need to give to others so you can be yourself. It’s about a relationship which grants both sides existence and which requires something from both sides. So it’s about structuring fertile togetherness.

You see, it’s an unconventional idea of love. That explains why so many people need nature and why nature is such a good healer. This is the experience of being able to love and being loved back.

Ah, “fertile togetherness” sounds like just the salve we need to begin to heal our many divisions. 

Walking the Ways of the Summer Light, Soul Path Sanctuary’s retreat-in-everyday life, provides a flexible structure for connecting more deeply with the natural world through elemental wisdom wanders leading up to the Solstice. Each year we have an overarching theme to inspire our exploring and guide our meaning making. This year our theme is Love in all its forms and phases—and most certainly including the practice of love of nature.

We begin on May 22nd and you are invited to join our community of seekers that connect with nature in the place where they live and  gather in virtual sharing circles weekly. As usual, the offering in exchange for this program is sliding scale. I’m happy to hear any questions you have.

***

The new moon post –

The arrival of the new moon stamps the moonth with an initiating energy that shifts and develops through a cycle of growth, fullness, and descent. The April 30th new moon (exact at 4:28pm ET, time zone converter) invites us to encounter the wisdom of the Tarot’s 5th Major Arcana. 

Often named as the Hierophant, images for this card traditionally include a leader and followers engaged in a religious ceremony. Who is in charge is made very clear in these images: the Hierophant is larger than other figures, elevated above them, and dressed in the most elaborate clothing. Hierophants’ work and teachings might be spiritual, but they are very much of the world, shaped by their culture and society, and enmeshed in the politics of institutions.

Some modern deck creators have reimagined this figure to highlight wisdom teachings suggested by this arcana but obscured, you might say, by the Hierophant’s elaborate robes. In the Gaian Tarot, for example, the Hierophant becomes the Teacher and “the institution” the Teacher serves (rather than leads) is nature.

In this image the Teacher may be the humble human figure holding flowers. 

Or maybe not. 

Coyote could be the Teacher appearing to deliver a message. They are very vocal after all. They yip and bark. We hear them howl at night, perhaps more so on a full moon when they take advantage of increased light for moving around or hunting. They could be calling us to speak out or to attend to our own lunar practice.

Heron, who is also in the image, speaks to us in a much quieter way: standing still, throat raised but silent. Heron is patient, waits for just the right moment to claim their wants and needs. They move between water and air; their feet in mystery, their wings raising them to gain a new view. Their call could be to listen more, cultivate patience, take stock of the full picture, or wait for the right moment to make a move.

Coyote and Heron are not the only Teachers. We can’t  overlook the plants here: dandelion, garlic, nettles, comfrey, and yarrow. They may be small but they are powerful healers. Years ago I wrote a reflection and created a spread inspired by the powers of the plants of the Gaian Teacher: the Five Green Allies Spread

With so many Teachers, how can we know which one is best to follow? There are multiple strategies for connecting with the just right Teacher.

We can work with the card image to be guided to the right Teacher. In my Tarot sessions and e-readings I often ask people to identify the first place their eye goes when they see a card. The detail, aspect, or creature that first captures their attention has special importance and offers a message of meaning.

But we don’t have to limit ourselves to the cards. We can take our seeking out into the world. If, for example, you drew the Teacher card in the morning, you could wisdom wander your way through the day paying attention to what plants and animals cross your path. It is wonderful if you can take some time in a park, a wild place, a cemetery, or a botanical garden, but even amidst the human-built environment you can be on the lookout for plants and animals. If someone offers you a dandelion tea or you see a picture of a coyote, this could mark the arrival of your teacher.

A third way to find your Teacher is to look to the larger patterns of the season or the stars. That is what I do to find the guides for these newsletters. I look to the astrology of the moon’s position and translate that into its Tarot correspondences.

And that brings us to a final teacher suggested by the Gaian Tarot Teacher: the Tree. 

A tree is central to the Teacher image and also to the passage card of the moonth. Today’s moon is made new at the point in the astrological Wheel of the Year that passes through the 6 of Pentacles/Earth. In the Herbcrafter’s Tarot, the Six of Earth is Pine. This lunar alignment suggests that collectively we might benefit from learning from trees in general and Pine in particular at this time.

The description of Pine in Joanna Powell Colbert and Latisha Gutherie’s Herbcrafter’s Tarot companion booklet offers guidance for practices and capacities to cultivate in this moonth:

Pine is an evergreen tree that keeps its needles all year, providing medicine, material for baskets, and shelter for forest creatures. It is a living embodiment of everlasting life. As the pine is gracious with its resources, be generous with those in need. Honor the people and the land that have provided you with the foundation, security, and resources on which you now rely. Gather the community together and teach what you know.

Pine shows us a teacher that sits within a circle of connections. Pine provides for the beings who visit its branches or travel over its trunk, but pine is provided for as well with nutrients from the soil, water from rain, and the food-making kiss of the sun. Though Pine towers in height, it is nurtured by reciprocal relationships that make life possible.

This is how “the institution” of nature functions. Reciprocal relationships are its laws and traditions, its rituals and prayers. 

Sadly, the evolution of our dominant human institutions—both religious and political—have moved us away from nature, placed us humans above our fellow beings, pushed us out of the circle of connection.

Can the connection be re-made? Can we find our way through the passage of Pine back into the circle of connection? Could it be possible for those of us most enmeshed in the systems based on disconnection from and dominance of nature?

I hear a Yes in answer to these questions coming from our final guiding card offered by the new moon moment: The King of Pentacles. 

There are some lovely re-imaginings of this card with images that more directly show the human and natural as part of a whole, but my musings today draw me to the iconic Rider Waite Smith version.

a 1909 card scanned by Holly Voley and retrieved from Sacred Texts. Deck available from US Games

Though on the surface this image is one of structure and echoes the idea of a King standing above and apart on a throne, the artist, Pamela Coleman Smith, has layered subversive wisdom into this image.

Spend some time gazing at this image and you’ll find it hard to see where the King ends and the natural begins. His robes covered in green leaves and fruits just fade into the plants that surround the throne. This king is inseparable from nature.

The throne is steadied by 4 bulls. In ancient Crete the bull was revered, and, as Ellen Lorenzi-Prince writes in the Minoan Tarot companion book: The bull is the [Goddess’] archetypal lover, as by his virility and potency he quickens the sacred cow to calf and to the production of milk.” The bull is the catalyst for the overflowing of life that comes from the Great Mother, from the earth itself. 

Finally, that which is highest in this image is not the tower or the crown, but a small red flower. In reality, the flower crowns this king. The flower may hold the utmost power.

If a king, that now quintessential symbol of institutions and dominance, can be carried back into the circle of connection through the loving embrace of the natural world, then surely you and I can be, too.

REFLECTION QUESTIONS / READING FOR THE MOONTH

These questions are offered for reflection and to spark practice throughout the moonth. Pulling Tarot and oracle cards in connection to these questions is appropriate, but not absolutely necessary. You might carry a question with you on a walk for example and observe what is happening in the natural world as a way to find insight into the answer to the question.

TEACHER: What is most important to pay attention to to encounter a More-Than-Human Teacher this moonth?

CONNECTION: What to cultivate to come into connection with this Teacher and their lessons?

LOVE: How will I learn to better practice love by being in relationship with this Teacher?

I do offer this as an e-reading in my collaborative initiative format for $23.  Sign up with Pay Pal or email me about sending a check. When I receive notification, I’ll be in touch to let you know about when to expect to receive your reading by email. I generally have openings to do these readings on Mondays and Saturdays.

Apr
16
2022

Full Moon Revelations: Visions of Justice

For Seekers – Moonthly Renewal – Practices for Soul & Spirit – Sanctuary

The height of this lunar cycle comes in the days around the full moon arriving on April 16th (exact at 2:55pm ET), and offers a revelation about how the energies initiated on the April 1st new moon are developing. That new moon, guided by its association with the Three and Queen of Wands invited us to a moonth of exploring the power of our visions. Out of our full moon revelations, we are issued an invitation to return a gift to the world in the final weeks of the cycle.  

The astro-Tarot correspondences align this full moon with Justice, the archetype of social and spiritual justice, cause and effect, truth, right order, and balance. So during this full moon time, we are invited to look at our visions with the eyes of Justice.


In honor of Passover—which is beginning as I finish writing this missive—
here is the Shekinah as Justice from The Raziel Tarot

In a contribution I made to Tarot for Troubled Times on Justice at the Heart of the Tarot, I wrote:

Justice is essentially collective. Justice is made manifest through laws, exists within groups and institutions (government, religion, and economy, for example), and is reflected in social and cultural expression.

While the work of justice can be inner-directed or outer-directed, the ultimate goal is to make justice’s ideals manifest in the world. Inner-directed justice work—such as spiritual practice, reflection time, training the mind as through meditation—serves the development of self-knowledge and resilience that are needed for effective action.

Connecting to our personal visions, which the new moon invited us to do, is also an example of inner-directed justice work. Now the full moon phase of the moonth invites us to connect the personal to the collective. Because if we are to bring our visions into form we will need to venture beyond ourselves. We will need to let the vision emerge into the world and be received by others. We will need collaborators to manifest the vision and/or help us spread the vision more broadly.

As the vision emerges and begins to have a life of its own beyond us, it may change and shift. Then we have an interesting balance challenge—we are still working with the dynamics of Justice here!—of not controlling the vision but also upholding its highest/deepest calling. We need to loosen ourselves from our expectations of how the vision would manifest. We can’t hold too tightly to our first idea of its form. But we must never stop listening to the guidance that comes from our Soul Selves, from the Greather Than Ourselves about the vision’s highest/deepest purpose.

Lately I have been puzzeling over the sources of our post-pandemic difficulties, our uneasiness and lethargy, our anger and rage. In this Vision-Justice moon cycle, I’m seeing the lack of a widely or well articulated vision that reaches people broadly as a source of our pain and why we are feeling stuck. This moonth calls us to begin creating that vision, starting from the personal but moving toward the collective. It won’t happen overnight, but it will never happen if we don’t begin now, even as we are still in the rubble of the collapse, even as the wars still rage.

What can offer us inspiration to find, expand, or renew the visions we need to meet the moment? We can look back in history to find the stories and strategies of life-giving visions emerging out of times of chaos. Or we can exercise our imaginations by looking to the future through reading works of science fiction or Afrofuturism, for example.

In Imagine the Angels of Bread, the poet Martín Espada does a bit of both to exhort us to work toward a better future. The last two stanzas of the poem are:

If the abolition of slave-manacles 

began as a vision of hands without manacles, 

then this is the year; 

if the shutdown of extermination camps 

began as imagination of a land 

without barbed wire or the crematorium, 

then this is the year; 

if every rebellion begins with the idea 

that conquerors on horseback 

are not many-legged gods, that they too drown 

if plunged in the river, 

then this is the year.

 

So may every humiliated mouth, 

teeth like desecrated headstones, 

fill with the angels of bread.

When this poem appeared on Mass Poetry’s Hope in Hard Times blog, Martín offered this writing prompt:

No change for the good ever happens without being imagined first, even if, at the moment we imagine this great change, it seems absolutely impossible. History teaches us, too, that we are the agents of this great change. It doesn’t come from the White House; it comes from our house. 

My wife, the poet Lauren Marie Schmidt, has used the poem as a prompt everywhere from urban high schools to homeless shelters. She says: “Imagine your life or the world as you want it to be. Make the poem into a list, and let the image, the language of the senses, do the work. Use the device of anaphora, repeating a key phrase related to time (i.e. ‘this is the year’) at the beginning of every line or stanza, except for the end of the poem.”

Whether you are writing to create a poem for sharing or journaling just for yourself, you might use this prompt as a way to more truly meet and speak of your vision. You might want to do it under the full moon light.

To draw together the energy of Vision and Justice during these full moon days, you might do one, some or combine all of these practices:

Moon bathe by sitting or lying under a window or outside on the ground. Feel the unique strength of the moon’s light. Let go of your thoughts and soak in the glow.

– Take out any reading or your reflections from the new moon and look at them in a new light. How does your understanding of the cards shift now that time has passed and light has shifted? (If you haven’t done a reading yet, no problem, just do it now under the light of the full moon. You can try the one included in the new moon post.)

Bring out the Three of Wands and/or Queen of Wands and the Justice cards from your Tarot deck and connect them to your new moon reading / reflections. You could place/imagine these cards on either side of your reading or above and below, and then look at how they add meaning into the story your original cards offered you.

– Reflect on the questions raised from the alignment of personal vision and collective Justice: What can I turn to gain inspiration for making my vision real? How does my vision advance Justice? Who can I collaborate with to make my vision real? How can I open up to the visions of others while holding on to the most important aspects of my own? What is my highest/deepest dream for our World? Feel free to pull cards to gain insight into these questions. You may want to engage in Visio Divina to find the layers of wisdom within the cards.

When you are done, remember to offer gratitude for what you have received. Consider what gift you now want to return to the world. Pulling a card for guidance on the gift is always a fine thing to do. In the coming weeks and before the moon returns to dark around April 21st, offer your gift to the world.

Program note: Next Friday, April 22, is the early bird price deadline for Encountering the Mysteries of Ancient Greece Tour in September. So if you would like to renew your vision with an immersion in mysteries of Demeter and Persephone, the sacred art of ancient Crete, and the Goddess encountered in the land sign up right away.

Stay Connected

Soul Path Sanctuary

Offering ~ I tend the sanctuary as gift to seekers on the unmarked path. If you find this site inspiring, I welcome a gift to continue serving you sustainably.