Morning Meditation - Not everything is about me!

Amber Canyon

Today I watched a fraternity of dancers, each group taking turns. I thought about how "for everything there is a season" and how that relates to "taking turns" and wondered what does this have to do with me?

One of the dancers stopped and smiled at me, so I asked him what this had to do with me.

He said, "Not everything is about you."

So true!

~what's this?


Morning Meditation - Between Earth and Sky

Amber Canyon

Back to the Snake Dancers again. This time, a Walpi Snake Priest, dressed for the Antelope dance, explained to me about the Eagle feathers and the cornmeal, both of which are used to control and contain the snakes.

The Eagle feathers represent the sky, the cornmeal represents the earth. And between the earth and the sky is a balance which holds the snake energy.

~what's this?


Morning Meditation - A Planning Session

Amber Canyon

Friday Aug 15

Today I found Medicine Crow - we sat in a cave together with firelight flickering, and in the sand were lines and circles, and I saw that this was a sort of war party planning session.

He said to me, "You still have a string to that wagon attached to you. First thing is to get that cut." He handed me a big pair of garden shears.

Then he drew in the sand a line leading to a circle. Inside the circle was a map. On the line he drew a symbol representing shears cutting it.

So I said, "OK, and then what?"

He said, "Then what? You know where you're going."

And I thought about a better diet, and I thought about my mob, I thought about the Way of the Shaman and I saw the woods and the valleys and the bright city beyond.... I said, "There." (meaning that journey)

He smiled and leaned back, obviously pleased with the answer, and I'm like... OK? so now what? And he showed me images of me making snares, carving a walking stick, carrying a knife, and matches.

I said, "So, I'll need tools!"

He smiled again, another right answer.

"OK, and then?" I asked. Thinking that since this was us planning a war party, my mind went to the "war" place... war on who? what? where are we going to "make our enemies cry"? Do I really even have enemies? Is war really what we're preparing for?

He said, "Life is a war, a battle, a struggle, and a dance. It's deadly serious for everyone, even this ant." He showed me an ant crawling on his finger. "Now, if he doesn't please me, if I want to, I can crush him right now."

I thought about "The Gods," I thought about how it does seem important to have them on your side, about the relentless force of nature, and how important it is to find benevolence there....

Then, (still talking about the ant, which is now crawling on his arm) he said, "I could help him, I could put him down right here and he could scurry home. Or, I could give him a journey and a vision." He got up and walked out of the cave, several hundred yards away, and put the ant on a leaf high in a tree. "Now he's got a quest," he laughed. "Finding his way home won't be easy from there."

So that was interesting... do the "Gods" act in this way? The Greeks thought so, I wondered about it for a small space of time.. Are there layers within layers? And if so, where do we fit into that grand scheme?

And then we were back in the cave. In retrospect I think maybe I am that ant, high in that unexpected place, wondering and working on how to get "home."

But we were now back at the task at hand, the circle in the sand. I said, "So where am I going? And is there a map?"

He said, "That's for you to figure out. Dream it and a map will come."

Once more we went over the plan.

Cut the string, Saturday is a full moon and an eclipse. So by Sunday night it might be good to have it done. I could work hard and long, and I could get it done. (By "it" I'm thinking closing the blogs in a formal way.)

Then, assemble and create tools. Dream the dream that will provide the map, and head out with my allies (Red Hawk, Crazy Thunder, and Holy Skin).


~what's this?


Thought for the Day - What we can imagine

What we can imagine, that we shall have. Today we are living through what collectively and individually we imagined in the past. Tomorrow we will be living through what we imagine today, for we are creative energies like the Great Energy in Whose image we are made, whether or not we realize the living force of our creations, whether or not we understand the power of our thoughts.

~ Evelyn Eaton

Morning Meditation - Halibut

Amber Canyon

Today, the halibut fishermen brought in their catch. We met them at the beach. There was a lot of laughter and a good deal of teasing as the men showed off their catch.

The air was cold and damp, it smelled of fish and water. The ground along the shore was soft and muddy. I felt bad for the silver fish in the nets, some still clinging to life.

A grandmother smiled at me and handed me a knife. "Don't feel bad," she said, "this is good. Now we will have plenty to save for winter."

She showed me how to fillet and gut the fish. I was awkward at first but soon got the hang of it, still feeling bad, though, for the fish.

Everyone around me seemed happy - there was a cheer in the air, a spirit of liveliness and fun, and I did my best to just relax into that.

As I was working, I started to wonder. "OK, so this is all find and good, but what does it have to do with me?"

The grandmother I was working with said. "These fish were happy to give themselves so that we can live, and as we live - they live."

I said, "Yes, I can see that," and I did, "But what does this have to do with my life now?"

She stood up and looked me straight in the eye and said in a very direct way. Speaking to my heart. "What you bring into your life now will sustain you through the dark time, through your "winters" - so take thought about what you bring in."

~what's this?


Morning Meditation - The Cradleboard

Amber Canyon

Today was so difficult. I turned to a Flathead mother and her baby. The baby was swaddled into a cradle board that was just beautiful, and at first glance, all I could see was that magnificent baby carrier.

Then I saw the woman, she was decked out in what I'm sure was her finest clothes. She was not new at motherhood and had an air of pride and confidence. Proud mostly, I thought, of the cradle board. That's when I saw there was a baby in it, a very unhappy baby.

It seemed to me that he was feeling cramped and constrained, that he wanted to fling out his arms and kick his feet. I bent down and touched his cheek, and he quit yelling for a moment and smiled at me. I wished his hands were out so that he could grab my finger.

And with that thought, I found myself almost immediately standing in judgment of the mother. Feeling accusatory, and saying to her something to the effect of, "What's more important? The cradle board or the baby?"

And she said, "He's a fine lusty boy. It's good that he has his say."

I kept popping in and out of the meditation, really wanting to get that baby out and let him do some moving around. And even though I knew that she did get him out and he was well loved and well cared for, even though I knew she was an experienced mother, this was the custom, and there were excellent reasons for it... I was still agitating to get that baby out and let him play.

She said, "There is a time and a place for everything. In this time and in this place he stays where he is."

I fussed some more, tried to get into a place of peace with it - didn't succeed. I finally had to just leave it at that, and it felt supremely unsatisfying.

In retrospect, now that I'm writing about it, I can see how antsy I am to get "the baby" out and how well this relates to how I'm feeling (I as the child) about my spiritual journey. It's like, for my own good, I'm swaddled and contained while I learn to speak my truth and be still. And I'd like very much to stretch my legs and get a move on, but the time isn't right. And in the mean time, I'm well loved and in the capable hands of an experienced "mother."

So - that's that!

~what's this?


Morning Meditation - Prayer Sticks Again

Amber Canyon

I turned to the guy putting prayer sticks by a pool of water. I've visited with him before (here's the link).

When he got done placing the stick, he stood up, dusted his hands off, and looked at me. "There, that's done," he said.

And I wondered what this whole prayer stick thing has to do with me. I mean, it's all fine and good that he does (or did) this, but in this now moment, what's the lesson for me? What's the message, the truth for me to take out into my day?

So I asked him.

And he said, "Well, maybe it would be good if you did this too."

I said, "OK, so where do I put them?" I thought about my cottonwood tree, and the other larger one that seems to hold energy as well - between the two of them, I think there's a balance of masculine and feminine. So, OK, both trees and then there's Our Lady of the Pond... and how about the place where the King of the Field Faeries came to watch me dance to release blocked energy....

Then, I didn't want anyone to feel "left out" so I started thinking of all the other trees and places on my property... I said to him, "So, just how many prayer sticks do you think I should make?"

He said, "Well, one for each of the Spirits of the place."

I said, "You mean every tree? Every nook and cranny that is sacred and special to me?"

He laughed and said. "Don't put them everywhere, that would be crazy making!"

So, I'm settled on making four - which seems a balanced number.

~what's this?


Morning Meditation - A Wishham Bride

Amber Canyon

This morning I met a beautiful girl - a Wishham Bride decked out in her finest things.

Very beautiful girl, she twirled around to show me all her finery. She was excited and happy about getting married. When I opened to her picture, my first thought was, "Well it's a done deal now - weddings mean vows and promises and life changes and commitment."

I attempted to get a sense of who she was marrying, and an idea of where her life was headed. I was particularly interested because I have no clear idea of what it is that I have committed to and no rational clear cut goal. All I have is a blessing, a path, and some guides. I don't know what that jeweled city represents or where it lies in the "real" world.

So... I was really hoping that she'd give me some insight about that - about "what does this commitment mean" and so that's one of the main reasons I was curious about and asking about her soon to be husband and the direction her life was taking.

All that she said was, "He's a good man." And then she was back showing me her dress and her jewelry.

So, that was fun. Her happiness was infectious. Then she said, "This is not about what my life will be like. And it's not about where your life is going. This is not about the future. This is about enjoying this moment."

(About finding joy in the now - is what came to me later when I was thinking about it, but that's not what she actually said. She said, "This is about enjoying this moment.")

~what's this?


Thought for the Day - Taking Stock

"Before embarking on any major step of the Way, it is well to take full stock of where we are and what we know of the starting point."

~Evelyn Eaton

Morning Meditation - Three Guides

Amber Canyon

So much has happened in the space of a week. Wow!

So, now I've given up all the blogs except one (Gypsy Magic, for some reason, doesn't count) and I'm sitting in my chair in my meditation room watching the leaves on the cottonwood tree dance and spin.

And my mind is racing and spinning - what to post, how to go about the process of letting the blogs go, what to say about it, the order in which to do it - all that.... realizing also that I'm still clinging, in a way.

I thought about yesterday's meditation, and saw myself picking up a yo-yo out of that pile of stuff to leave behind. And, knowing I should leave it - and yet there it is, staying in my hand.

The woman looks down at me and says, "Leave it here." so I try, but it keeps sticking to my hand. She says, "Put it down, it's the devil."

And I know that she's right, and that by "devil" she doesn't mean evil or "scary bad," what she means is that it's tempting, so very tempting, and that if I givein to it, I'll be selling my soul - selling out - whatever or however you want to label it.

So, I put it down under a tree and when, like a yo-yo it came back, I put it down again. I can see how this is going to be a process, because even while I'm writing this, I can feel it back in the palm of my hand.

I might need an EXORCISM to rid myself of the EVIL YO-YO!


This wasn't even my meditation. I hadn't even opened the book yet!!

So, I opened the book with the thought, "OK. Now what?"

And there they were, my friends and allies, Red Hawk, Crazy Thunder, and Holy Skin. These are the same guys that showed up to help me with the ceremony to release blocked energy, and now here they are again.

So, I said, "Where are we going?"
And they replied, "Through the Badlands."

And I'm like... ok... badlands, huh....Sounds scary and interesting - like one of those adventures that's mostly fun AFTER it's over and you've lived through it.

But I'm game. I'm up for it. I really do want my life to be an adventure, and i really do want to live on the edge. Safe and comfortable for too long makes me lazy and crazy.

So... those were my thoughts. And it also occurred to me that the three of them must be my "guides" in a real sense, and that it might be good to honor that in some way... back in the day... if I was a Sioux and had dreamed them, I'd probably be painting their symbols on my teepee - my body - my drum - my horse - somewhere....

I thought about the big stick I found back last fall when my friend Daniel and I went on an adventure looking for fairies. I thought how it might be good to decorate it in some way... make it into a staff of sorts. Maybe three - strings - strips - feathers - something - waving from the top? It wasn't clear, but I did take this to be a first step in knowing what to do with that stick/staff/wand/linear kimana.

Then I turned to them and I said, "Well, OK, Let's go!"

They looked at each other and laughed, "I think she needs a horse."

So there was a horse, he was black and wild - he was a pinto pony - he was changing shape and color too fast for me to pinpoint exactly what he looked like....

And I was on him, and he was rearing up. We were just itching to ride and ride hard.

I looked at them with the quextion, "Why don't I know what he looks like?"

And they said, "He's a Spirit Horse. He is who and what he wants to be."

Then the horse seemed to settle into the form of a pony, with two feathers tied into his mane and a white hand print on top of a big brown patch on his rump.

We were ready to go. I felt the excitment building... and started whooping and hollering...

The three guides looked at each other and smiled, the way you smile about a silly child that you love. And we started off. They opted for a leisurely pace, conserving energy (I thought) for the hard times to come.

~what's this?


Song For The Dead

We are beating the drums
and singing the songs
having a great feast for the dead
for our children are gone
and none remain.

Come back my nephew we miss you
Come back my daughter we miss you
Come back my son we miss you
Come back our lost ones we miss you

Come back we are lonely
Where have you gone
Come back we are lonely
Where have you gone
Come back we are weeping
Where have you gone
Come back we are asking
Where have you gone

Come back my brother
Come back my sister
Come back my father
Come back my mother

We will sing a song for you
We will follow the river to the sea
And add our tears to the waves
The tide will rise
The tide will fall
The night will come
The night will go
You will not come
You are gone.
Where did you go?

We are singing our sorrow
We are singing our grief
We are singing our farewell
and our puzzlement
Why did you go?

From: Daughters of Copper Woman

Morning Meditation - Letting Go

Amber Canyon

So... I'm wiffle waffling and angsting over the blogs - the picture blogs in particular - but they do seem to be tangled up with the others as well.

When I did my morning meditation I asked specifically if I could get some insight into what to do about them.

I turned to Tsatsalatksa - a strong, beautiful, Skokomish woman. She wouldn't make direct eye contact with me. She kept looking over my head off into the distance. As I merged into the picture I found myself standing with her on a road at the top of a hill.

In the "dream" I was a child, she the mother. I was looking backward, she was looking forward. Gently, she reached down and with her hands on my shoulders, she turned me around.

Far on the horizon was a beautiful city. She said, "Do you see that?" And I knew that was where we were headed. We started walking and trailing behind me was a wagon piled high with my various stuff.

I thought to myself, this is too apt, too symbolic, I must be making it up. So I tried to forget about the stuff, to NOT see it, to NOT imagine it, but still the wagon full of stuff persisted. So finally, I gave in and accepted that it was there for a reason and a purpose.

The woman looked down at me and said, "Let it go." and I said, "But I need it." and she said, "Let it go." and I said, "But I need it." and she said, "Let it go." and I said, "But I want it."

She was very patient. The dialogue continued. She would say, "Let it go." And I would say, "But I like it." "But what if I need it." "But what if it comes in handy later?" "But what about other people who like it." "But I love it." "But it's fun and interesting." "But... But.... But..."

And to each "But.." She would reply, "Let it go."

Finally, she reached down and unclenched my fingers from the handle of the wagon. The whole time, I'm saying, "But... But..."

And even when I wasn't hanging on to the wagon any more, the stuff was still following us, attached by a string that I was holding in my pocket.

She said, "Really, you must let it go."

And I did try, but I just couldn't seem to cut myself off from it. So she stopped and pointed at the beautiful city on the horizon, glowing and shimmering with golden light. "That's where we are going, you need to let this other go."

She pointed down the hill, and I saw before us valleys and forests, cliffs and dangerous territory. I knew that if I tried to drag my noisy, bulky, heavy wagon through all that - we would surely fail. Maybe even die.

That journey looked exciting, and interesting, adventuresome and dangerous. I let go of the string and the wagon. It felt so scary and vulnerable to do that.

We started off again. "But wait," I said. "I need some stuff. I need to get some stuff out of it to take with us." She didn't let go of my hand so that I could run back and rifle through the wagon.

She smiled and said, "What do you have in your pockets?" And suddenly they were bulging with stuff.

The first thing I pulled out was a whistle. "You can take this," she said, "it might come in handy." I had a small flash of being in a dark scary forest, playing the whistle and finding courage, maybe even faeries.

She insisted that I empty my pockets. So much stuff - a candle, knives, sticks, gum, lots of stuff.

The only thing she let me keep was the whistle. I felt very naked as we turned and began to walk down the hill.

NOTE: I'm thinking that whistle is this one little blog.

~what's this?


This is a day of change!

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Ice mountain melted
ages ago
and made this ridge,
this place of changes.

Now we are rooted in it,
we of the old ones,
we of the new ones from afar,
oat grass meadow, Douglas fir thicket,
we are rooted in the ridge of changes in the time of changes.

The winds carry strange smells, this is a day of change.

Great ones above and below, bless us!
O shining One above, feed us with your light!
O soft ones, sky darkeners, wash us with your raindrops!
O powers above us, bless us with your gifts,
for we reach up to you,
branching wood and sap.

O Earthmother from whom we grow,
sandy gravel into whom our roots branch wood and sap deep down,
bless us in our night-sleep, in our death and decay.

Bless us, dark earth as we give back
that which we have received
as we make a forest of blessing a ridge of blessings
for the future to grow upon.

~Chinook Psalter

Morning Meditation - Morning Song

Beautiful image today of the Spokane River and a group of Yakima tribesmen. I kind of just fell into the picture. So beautiful. And when I did, I saw myself walking toward them dressed in native costume.

As I came up to them, I started to sing.

I'm not going to share that song here, because as soon as the meditation was over, I realized later that it was a power song, given to me for a specific purpose and intention. And as such, it's not to be shared in this way.

This was, really neat! Wow! So totally unexpected.

Amber Canyon

~what's this?


Focus on symbols or goals

Sit quietly and focus (visually) on a symbol, picture, or object related to some goal or project. As you maintain focus on the subject your patterns link and change. The usual effect is that initially you begin to get a flow of ideas, old and new, about the subject. If there is tension to begin with in your relationship with the subject or what it represents, you body may express that tension for a while, but as you continue the focus there will be a release and a new relationship pattern.

This is a good meditation for clearing up relationships with people, places, money, success, or any goal-oriented endeavor, as well as for stimulating a flow of creative ideas in relation to it. Many people are doing this without realizing it when studying, planning, or working. The third thing this exercise does is set up a resonance that begins to attract the nearest equivalent to what you are focusing on.

A useful variation is to focus on a symbol, picture, or object related to a problem in your life. This may upset a lot of people who say they don't want to give energy to their problems by focusing on them, but this focus is different. When you focus on a problem with a calm attitude of positive expectation and nonjudgment, the problem changes because you change. You may get different insights or realizations about it, or conditions surrounding the problem may change without your conscious knowledge or effort, but something will change.

We often say that it is easier to resolve a problem if you make peace with it first, and that is what this exercise helps you to do.

~Serge Kahili King via The Prosperity Project

Morning Meditation - with Spotted Jack Rabbit

Friday August 1st

So today, I found myself with Spotted Jack Rabbit. Actually - let me back up a minute - I've been reading The Way of the Shaman by Michael Harner, and have decided to do all of his exercizes in order and in depth. So I was thinking about that right before I opened the book and found myself face to face with Spotted Jack Rabbit.

He put his hands on my head, and I realized that I was kneeling in front of him, which surprised me because that's never happened before and was totally unexpected.

With his hands on my head, he began praying in his own language which I did not understand. As he was praying, he reached up and pulled water out of the air and sprinkled my head with it.

then he reached down and picked up a handful of earth and sprinkled that on my head too. He then blew smoke in my face.

I was just wondering about the element of fire (I'd just had water earth and air) when he picked up two sticks that were on fire. I thought of them as "fire sticks" and he put them in my hands.

He motioned me to bring my hands (holding the sticks) up over my head. I turned now, and saw that behind me was a mound of sticks and branches - I struck the mound with the fire sticks and it burst into flames.

Now there was a big ceremonial fire, and there were dancers all around it. And I joined in the dancing, circling once around the fire.
Then I saw a blanket on the ground, and I lay down on it.

Spotted Jack Rabbit covered me with another blanket, said more prayers, and then began piling stones on top of me until I was covered except for my head. "He's grounding me," I thought.

And he said, "Call now to Great Spirit," and I called, and he said "Call now to Great Spirit," and I called, and he said "Call now to Great Spirit," and I called. This continued for a while until it became a kind of a chant. And then I saw darkness and a light.

And I said, "Help me and be on my side. Support me. Help me... be on my side. I will do my best to walk the good red road... help me please and be on my side."

Then, without any real idea if Great Spirit would help me or not, I opened my eyes (in the dream) and the dancers were around me, and they lifted the pallet I was laying on - the blanket which now had branches underneath it. They tilted it up so the rocks fell down, and amazingly none hit my feet. The blanket covering me slid off, and I was standing.

I then realized that my hands were tied to the framework of the pallet that had just been lifted. I turned my back to the fire and walkled backwards toward it until the branches caught fire and burned away.

Then the blanket burned away, and my clothes... the fire was not hot. It did not burn me, but the clothes, the blanket, and the pallet went up in flames.

Then my hair caught on fire and burned away, then my skin, and my body, and I became a "shining one" and I danced around the fire with the others who were now shining ones as well.

Then I heard him callime me back. I heard him calling me back, calling me back, and everythign seemed to morph backwards really fast and soon I found myself kneeling in front of Spotted Jack Rabbit, and his hands were on my head.

I thought - this is a blessing - an initiation - an acceptance of my decision to pursue the shamanic training.

I stood up and he smiled at me and ruffled my hair. I gave him a hug. He was pleased, I could see, but he brushed it off as if to say... "Aww... it was nothing really."

And that was it...

Amber Canyon

~what's this?