When Changing One Thing Changes Everything

Keystone XL demonstration, White House,8-23-20...
Keystone XL demonstration, White House,8-23-2011 Photo Credit: Josh Lopez (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I had planned to write about my own personal journeys with change today, but then read Julia Butterfly Hill’s blog about the Keystone XL pipeline, which made me reconsider what to share this evening.  You can read my earlier reblog to connect to her informative blog if you are so inspired.

This pipeline is a controversial subject, especially for people like me who have been involved with sustainability projects.  Most environmentalists I know are vehemently opposed to this project.  Many of them banded together to get Obama to stop the project and seemed to have succeeded.

As Julia’s blog shows, Obama then went on to reverse course and expedite the project. I have to believe he did this primarily for political reasons to get re-elected.  I understand  his choice when at least half the country is more concerned about the price of gasoline than a pipeline that they will never see. This reversal gets very little media coverage, and it makes me sad that most people don’t understand the impact of this pipeline.  If this pipeline goes through, it could be a change that causes immeasurable damage.  Yet, not everyone agrees including Paul Ryan.

As someone who cares deeply about green issues, I find myself wanting to vote for the green candidate, Jill Stein, who was not allowed or asked to participate in the presidential debates this week, and was actually taken to jail for trying to enter the debates.  You might read Democracy Now to get another perspective of current events in America.  Unlike some other countries like Germany, a green party doesn’t get much respect in America.  Unfortunately, Romney is so anti-environment that if I don’t vote for Obama I’m likely voting for an even dimmer future for America.

I had planned on writing about the concept that sometimes changing one major thing in our life can affect the entirety of our lives deeply. My move to a new home this fall has been like that for me.  It’s been a fresh start that has changed my whole way of living.

I wonder what would it take for America and the broader world to have a fresh start. Is there one thing that we could all agree upon to change in our collective life and society that would change everything for the better?

I believe increasing our support of safeguarding the ecosystems that support life on this planet is incredibly important.  I also believe we have the technology now and the capacity to make the world into an Enchanted Oasis for all life, but don’t have the collective will to do so.  Yet maybe the most important change isn’t greening the planet, maybe it’s something else.

Perhaps the most important change to make that happen would be to elevate the status of women around the world.  For if we look at those who are fighting for health, for peace, and for a more beautiful green earth, we see the importance of women like Rachel Carson to  Aung San Suu Kyi in Burma and Wangari Maathai in Africa.  Imagine if all women had greater power and respect.

What big change would you love to see happen that might change everything for the better?

Today’s Contemplation:

Is there one thing that you could change that would improve every area of your life?

Is there one thing that working with others you could affect change that might broadly improve the future for everyone?

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Are You Willing to Be Considered a Loafer?

One of my favorite photos from a few years ago – my kids walking with my Mom through a Redwood forest.

If a man walks into the woods for love of them half of each day, he is in danger of being regarded a loafer.  But if he spends his days as a speculator, shearing off those woods and making the earth bald before her time, he is deemed an industrious and enterprising citizen.”

Henry David Thoreau

Cultural ideas haven’t changed much in the last 150 years since Thoreau’s time.  Our society still places a high value on worldly accomplishment without actually paying much attention on a daily basis to the world where we live.

Thoreau can be an inspiration for any of us writers, because he challenges us to look deeply at the choices and sacrifices we’re making in our lives.

There is a power in taking your writing, your values and life seriously, Thoreau shows us this.

Daily Contemplation:

Do you give yourself permission to see yourself as a Thoreau of our time when you write about the choices you are making in your life?

Would you be willing to be regarded as a loafer to follow your deepest values?

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The Green Man – Enchanted Symbol of the Earth

English: Photograph depicting a carving by Pau...
English: Photograph depicting a carving by Paul Sivell, titled “Whitefield Green Man.” (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The first symbol of enchantment in my Enchanted Oasis series is the Green Man, a reflection of our longing for connection with nature.

Given the role of all plants in consuming our carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen in the air for us to breathe, perhaps the Green Man symbol is a mirror of something deep within us that knows we are more intimately connected to the green world than we realize.

If you’re unfamiliar with this symbol of enchantment, Wikipedia discusses the idea of the green man in this way:

A Green Man is a sculpture, drawing, or other representation of a face surrounded by or made from leaves. Branches or vines may sprout from the nose, mouth, nostrils or other parts of the face and these shoots may bear flowers or fruit. Commonly used as a decorative architectural ornament, Green Men are frequently found on carvings in churches and other buildings (both secular and ecclesiastical). “The Green Man” is also a popular name for English public houses and various interpretations of the name appear on in signs, which sometimes show a full figure rather than just the head.

The Green Man motif has many variations. Found in many cultures around the world, the Green Man is often related to natural vegetative deities springing up in different cultures throughout the ages. Primarily it is interpreted as a symbol of rebirth, or “renaissance”, representing the cycle of growth each spring. Some speculate that the mythology of the Green Man developed independently in the traditions of separate ancient cultures and evolved into the wide variety of examples found throughout history.

We are indebted to the artists and sculptors among us who create these beautiful symbols of man intertwined with nature. For my own part, the Green Man symbol shows up in the novel series that I’m revising this summer, in a slightly different manifestation.

The artistic use of enchanted symbols can also be a reminder for many of us to take practical action.  The Green Man reminds us that it is in our best interest to remember our close connection with the trees of the earth.

Typical boreal forest.
Typical boreal forest. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

There are many ways to work on the sustainability of our world, but in my opinion,  few are more important than maintaining and rebuilding forests around the world.  The challenge is that climate change is going to make this more difficult. Across the U.S.  global climate change is creating fires that destroy forests like those in California this year, and without frosts to kill insects that attack trees, many species of trees are suffering.  So, we’re going to have a battle on our hands.

Does the Green Man or other symbols of enchantment intertwined with nature speak to you?

If maintaining a green earth is an important issue for you, how might the use of an enchanted nature symbol in your art or life add to your commitment and actions?

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Rumi’s Thoughts on Blooming

Mawlānā's tomb. "Konya",Turkey
Mawlānā’s tomb. “Konya”,Turkey (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Cease looking for flowers!

There blooms a garden in your own

home.

While you look for

trinkets

The treasure house awaits in your

own being.

Rumi

I came across this beautiful quote last night and thought it was a great follow-up contemplation after yesterday’s post.

Earlier this week, I suggested going for a swing.

It’s also a good season to go for a whirl as well.  You don’t have to be a dervish.

Remember when you were a kid, and allowed yourself to twirl around to your heart’s content.   Twirling and whirling also happens to be a decent way to keep your spine supple.

Today take some time to discover your greatest treasure — you!

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Bloom in the Garden of Your Life

This was a little twig when my kids’ grandfather (on their Dad’s side) planted this about 14 years ago. Their grandfather is no longer with us, but these flowers bloom in what now looks like a tall tree and remind of us his love.

Every season gives us different types of blooming.

In my garden, the time of most profuse blooming is in the Spring.

The summer heat can often be too intense for many of the more delicate flowers that I like.

In Fall, the bloom of colors in falling leaves dazzles us.

In the heart of Winter, there are trees that stay green and even one with berries and blossoms coming forth.

Outside of the seasonal world, our soul’s world can also bloom at all times.

We bloom differently when we are in grief than in joy.  Even boredom is blooming if we can see it as a signal to create something new.

What is blooming for you in this season of your life?

Pay attention to it, even if it hurts you. The bloom doesn’t last forever, for our human lives come to an end quicker than we would like.  Each bloom is precious in the garden of your life.

Today’s Solstice – A Mirror for the Great Global Reversal Now Underway

The sun behind the Heel Stone at Stonehenge, s...
The sun behind the Heel Stone at Stonehenge, shortly after sunrise on the summer solstice. Keywords: Summer Solstice, Stonehenge, sunlight, Heel Stone. Español: El sol detrás de la Piedra del Tacón en el monumento de Stonehenge, Gran Bretaña, poco después del amanecer del solsticio de verano. Français : Le soleil derrière la Heel Stone de Stonehenge, peu après son lever, au solstice d’été. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Happy Solstice!

It’s been a while since I’ve shared my perceptions of transformative energies that are sweeping through the world.  This is a longer post for those of you who are inclined to read this.

Tapping Into Your Own Energy Today

If you would like a Solstice meditation to uplift your energy, check out Ken Stone at solsticeforyoursoul.com.  I always find his guided meditations leave me feeling blissed out.  I listened to this meditation earlier today, and think it could help you align your energy with the reversals that are coming.

A Time for Personal Strength

Today is the Solstice, a day when energies around the world mirror our yearly transition of the orbit of the earth around the sun.

This is also a day when if we are listening through our soul’s antenna,  destiny is calling all of us who are alive in these days of tremendous change.

As we move through these dramatic times,  compassion and caring are the most important strengths we can develop.  Today is a good day to align yourself with those aspects of yourself.

Trend Reversal

Practically speaking, the Solstice is always a day when seasonal trends reverse:

If you’re in the northern hemisphere, this is the longest day of the year. The days will get shorter until December 21st.

And if in the southern hemisphere, this is the shortest day of the year for you, and the days are now about to get longer.

We Are in the Midst of a Bigger Shift

The days we are living through contain profound energies and opportunities for positive change that are beneficial for you, especially when you don’t resist the change.

We are in the middle of a huge collective reversal that is changing belief sets that have been in existence for thousands of years.

Not everyone likes this reversal. In fact, you might not like it, because it is so deeply ingrained in our belief sets.

Because the belief that is being reversed is the idea that mono-cultures are good for us.

This doesn’t mean there is no room for tribes or homogeneity. There is something in human nature that likes to be surrounded by people who are like us.  In the book, Thrive by  Dan Buettner points to cultures and people who seem happier when they share a certain amount of similarity.

Yet on the whole, if my logic and intuition are correct:

We are moving into a long period of time (millennia) when diversity is cherished across the earth.

Humans have lived in a world where for thousands of years, different cultures have insisted on and often gone on to create gruesome wars in order to protect a single idea, religion, culture or world view.  Humanity on the whole has sought to drive out wildness and diversity and dissent.

We did this because it seemed safer for humanity to do so.

Collectively, we destroyed forests across the world, limited the number of species of preferred animals and food, and societal structures.

It may be that we had to go through these changes to survive as a species and evolve our consciousness.

In modern times, we see the drive for monoculture as an underlying goal in most corporations.  The underlying goal for most capitalist companies is to create products and services in such a way that monopolies are created and profits are maximized.  This is such a prevalent idea, that we don’t always see it, especially if the monopoly is led by a charismatic leader such as a Steve Jobs.

In agriculture, we collectively created a world where mono-cultures of food crops now dominate the world. For many in the world, there is only one true religion, the one they are following.

Developing Your Individuality

An interconnected world and human consciousness is changing all of this.  And I would contend that the divine Spirit that connects us all together is also letting us know that it favors this change and loves diversity.

In individuals, we have sometimes honored versatility.  I’ve always liked to read about Sir Isaac Newton because he was a scientist, astrologer and a devout man.  In his time, you could be them all.  Same with Leonardo Da Vinci.  But if you were a woman with that same combination of interests in those days, God help you! You were much more likely to be burnt at the stake for being a heretic than become renowned for your versatility.

We are moving into a new time, when diversity will be appreciated much more than mono-culture.  That means a culture of men and women working together is the one that will flourish. We need a vast collection of opinions, ideas, religious beliefs, plants, organic foods, cultures to help the world make a quantum leap into a more just, prosperous and peaceful world.

At the same time that differences can be celebrated, we are all connected by a common humanity, whether we like it or not.  Many of us also believe we are connected with all of life energetically, including stones, trees, mountains, oceans and other worlds, and they are trying to get through to us.

What does this all mean for you?

It means that being unique is already starting to be valued more than fitting in.  If you look at the situation in our global economy with an open mind, you can see that the collective whole needs us to express our unique perspective and talents.

On a more psychic note, today’s Solstice is carrying powerful energies to help you to reverse the trends of your life.

  • If you have been unhealthy much of your life, you can find healing and health in the months and years ahead.
  • If you have tried too much to fit in, opportunities will arise for you to stand out, more quickly, the more authentic you are.
  • If you have been working alone for too long, you will find your tribe to support you.
  • If you have been overwhelmed by the needs of others, you will have time for your needs to now be met.

The reversal you will see is as individual as you are.

The end result is the same however.  By being your unique self to your best ability, you will feel more connected to everyone and everything on this planet more than you ever have before.

Enjoy this Solstice.  Some people like to make a wish today.  You might enjoy writing your destiny between now and the December solstice to be a witness to what changes in your life.  I believe you will see some very positive reversals in your life.

How will you make the most of your summer (or winter)?

seasons
seasons (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Seasonally, quite a bit of the world is moving into a slower paced time.

If you’re in the northern hemisphere, summer is beginning and if in the southern hemisphere winter is starting.  In my experience, both extremes of cold and heat, lead to a slowing down.

There is no limitation on when we can start or finish writing projects, but I find that it’s easier for me to finish projects in these slower times, and take on smaller projects that are harder to fit in during the busy seasons.  In that way, I’m ready for the surge of energy that I almost always get in the fall or spring to start something bigger.

" Summer on track "
” Summer on track ” (Photo credit: gmayster01 on & off …)

I’m taking advantage of my natural energy flows by not only for finishing writing projects, but doing simple projects that might be easier to do now.  Reading Brendon Burchard’s book Charge also motivated me to commit to some 60-90 plans in place for this summer, with a focus on the joy of being alive to learn and experience new activities.

Our summer family goals are:

  • Archery class for my youngest son
  • 4-week home French class that I’ve been meaning to do for what seems like forever
  • Family Road trip in July – we still haven’t decided exactly where yet
  • See an old friend of mine who is coming to Chicago in late June
  • Schedule a water park trip for my oldest son
  • Read the Five Ancestors series of books with my youngest son
  • Finish three smaller writing projects for me
  • Each of us is going to follow an exercise program to become more fit by this fall

Do you have any summer (or winter) goals?  This next 60-90 days could be a wonderful time to find new ways to love your life even more than you do now.  What excites you now?