There Be Dragons, Rip Tide, and Synchronicity

Before I set out on my journey South by Southeast this weekend, to visit friends, attend ceremony, and go swimming in the Atlantic Ocean, my very good friend cautioned me to be careful swimming, because, “There be Dragons… And Rip Tides.”  I laughed with him nervously about the Dragons, and assured him I know what to do about Rip Tides.  

So I set out on my road trip, covering 100 miles on Friday, arriving at my friend’s house, after some mild excitement on the way down.

Next morning, I overslept my alarm, so I missed the 8:00 am water blessing ceremony.  I eventually completed the last 50 miles at about 10:30 am, arriving in the town with absolutely no idea where to find the Water Tribe, having only a list of four parking lots in my memory.  Ok.  I drove east until I had to go left or right.  I went right.  I drove a few blicks, and saw one of the named parking lots, pulled in and got the last space.  Got out of my car and realized I know the woman walking towards me.  She’s a member if my UU Church from Fort Myers, a member of the Water Tribe.  Synchronicity!

She told me where to find the rest of the Water Tribe.  I headed over to the Beach.  As I reached the crest of the Dunes, I immediately began scanning the surf, to gauge the  shape of the waves, and how they were breaking and running.  I grew up going to the New Jersey Shore, and learned all about Rip Tides there.  I was satisfied the current would be safe, and proceeded to the water’s edge.

I greeted my fellow Water Tribe, peeled off my mumu, put all my stuff in a pile, blew kisses to everyone, and strode into the Ocean.  

The waves were running about 18 inches high, which is hardly worth jumping, but it’s better than the Gulf which is like the World’s Biggest bathtub.  There, the waves are maybe 5 inches high.  On the other hand, there was a fairly strong tow to the North, but not an undertow.  I had to swim back to my mark on the beach, frequently.

Time slowed down, and I relaxed, and enjoyed the waves, the water, the sand under foot.  I practiced my wave jumping form.  I stretched my legs, I did slow spins, and corkscrew spins.  These are all the things you would expect a Pisces Whale Person to do at the beach.

There were lots of people about, some seaweed here and there,  but no bait fish.  But all at once I knew I was not alone in the water.  The Dragon had come.  Or in this case, maybe two small dragons.  It/they was to my right, and close to the sand.  I stopped jumping the waves and stood still and LOOKED.  I had removed my prescription sun glasses when I put everything down to go swimming, so I hoped I could figure out what this critter was, quickly.  I wasn’t positive, but I thought I had a good idea…

(Honorable Shamans and Fellow Pagans, it’s important to remain calm when you are in this kind of situation.) 

I stood still and the critter did not advance.  Good.  I backed up about 5 feet, going parallel to the beach and the critter did not advance.  Good.  Then I turned to the beach and moved 5 feet in, toward the beach.  The critter stayed put.  EXCELLENT.  By then, I calmly skipped out of the water, and LOOKED back to the surf.  The critter was where I left it.  Great.

I think it was a pair of large sting rays.   No pictures of them.  I’m glad I didn’t accidentally step on them!

Share your Peace with Mother Earth and Father Sky and the Big Waters all around us.  Remember, when you are swimming in the Ocean, you are in someone’s living room.

(c) 2017 by Whale Maiden for the Earthways Shamanic Path.  All rights reserved

Journey of the Heart: The Symbols Within

This post substantially edits the May 10th post,    “Journey of the Heart:  The Shamanic Path Within.”

In this Blog, I am describing a Journey which I am on, to find my Spiritual Path.  I am on what is called the Earthways Shamanic Path.  That much is known and clear.  But since it is a path of my own invention, and I am blazing a trail, I have to feel my way, with each step.  Recently — at a New Moon meditation ceremony, two months ago, I came out of the ceremony with the vision of a great green spiral.  It looked something like this:

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A green spiral. (Photo credit unknown)

Green is the color of the Heart Chakra.  I am on a journey of the heart, but I knew the message wasn’t about romance.  Instead, this is about finding my soul’s connection to the great green spiral that pulses at my core, (at my Soul’s Heart,) and about my on-going dedication to honor my Path, “the Path with the most heart,” which was the most important lesson I got from the Carlos Castenada books.

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Photo Credit, unknown

[I thought the Spiral referred to the Sea…]

Honorable Shamans and Fellow Pagans, you must find YOUR Path.  The one that will best nurture you and challenge you to grow and flourish.  This is the Path with the most Heart,.  Sometimes, following this path may require that you take focused steps winding along mountain sides.  Other times, you will discover the path completely drops off a cliff and you must ‘high back’ and leap across the chasm.  Trusting you will drop into the Sea, the deep waters all around us, and discover you are body surfing, jumping waves and the curl of the waves drops you off in a forest glen, densely green and lush and so soft and you enter it and the big green hum of cicadas sings to you, calls to your heart, their rising and falling crescendos a giant spiral yet again. Find your song, follow your path.

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Cicada by Whale Maiden 11/2015

Here’s the Important update, Honorable Shamans and Fellow Pagans:  a few days after I posted   “Journey of the Heart:  The Shamanic Path Within”  I had a conversation with a helpful reader, who helped me understand that I had written TWO posts in one blog post.  (One was all about Music and Messages From Spirit. and I have pulled that one together, elsewhere.)  I realized the point of this Blog, was the symbol, the Green Spiral.  So, I searched the internet for images of green spirals, and that is when I found this:

As you can see in the accompanying text, the Koru spiral refers to “going back to the beginning, in order to nurture new phases in life”  And, what this means to me is, at that New Moon Ceremony, two months ago I was being encouraged to go back to my Path’s roots, and feel my way forward, to make sure I would make good choices in the subsequent time.

My experiences on my path began in Nature at the Jersey Shore (the wave as spiral) and included lots of time in the Pennsylvania woods, surrounded by cicada, who’s noises are an all enveloping spiral,   so, it is important to return to Nature to “Find the Path with the Most Heart.”

I’ve been through a lot of changes since that New Moon Ceremony, two months ago:  I’ve left a ten-year relationship.  I moved away from the house where I have lived for 15 years, the County for over 30.  I got a new job.  I’ve reconnected with my inner spirit, I am happy.  I’ve had some wonderful adventures out in Nature.  Has my Path sustained me during all this?  Yes, it has.  Am I connected to Spirit?  Yes, I am.

So I say to you, We are all Connected.  Share your Peace with Mother Earth, Father Sky, and with the Big Waters all around you.

(c) 2017 to present, Whale Maiden for the Earthways Shamanic Path, all rights reserved (Except for the spiral photos.)

Journey of the Heart: The Shamanic Path Within

I sing a lot.  Sometimes I sing out loud, and teach songs in sacred space.  Other times, I sing along to my cd player in my car as I am driving around Florida, on my circuit of road trips.  Other times, the Song is in my head and ears rolling around in a great widening spiral to my heart.

I am on a journey of the heart, but this isn’t about romance.  This is about finding my soul’s connection to the great green spiral that pulses at the Heart chakra, and about my on-going dedication to honor my Path, “the Path with the most heart,” which was the most important lesson I got from the Carlos Castenada books.

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Photo Credit, unknown

Honorable Shamans and Fellow Pagans, you must find YOUR Path.  The one that will best nurture you and challenge you to grow and flourish.  This is the Path with the most Heart,.  Sometimes, following this path may require that you take focused steps winding along mountain sides.  Other times, you will discover the path completely drops off a cliff and you must ‘high back’ and leap across the chasm.  Trusting you will drop into the Sea, the deep waters all around us, and discover you are body surfing, jumping waves and the curl of the waves drops you off in a forest glen, densely green and lush and so soft and you enter and the big green hum of cicadas sings to you, calls to your heart, their rising and falling crescendos a giant spiral yet again.

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Cicada by Whale Maiden 11/2015

Find your song, follow your path.

And share your Peace with Mother Earth, Father Sky, and with the Big Waters all around you.

(c) 2017 to present, Whale Maiden for the Earthways Shamanic Path, all rights reserved (Except for the Wave photo.)

Heading Into Fire Season

We are heading into Fire Season here in Southwest Florida.  How can I tell?  In the past two weeks, the day time temperature has hit 80 degrees every day.  It is Hot.  People are talking about how hot it is.  The psychological shift that year-rounders under go, to cope with the extreme heat we know is coming, is underway. 

It isn’t Humid yet.  (Humidity is the province of Rainy Season.)  It is Dry and Windy.

The Yellow Blossom Trees are coming into bloom.  {I’ve got to get a good picture of them THIS year!  I think I missed them last year…}

And, the Live Oak trees have flowered and dropped their seeds.  I call this stuff, ‘oak skree.’  I’ll post a photo of it, in a moment.  I gather this stuff in broad daylight and put it into whatever container I have when I see it.  Sometimes I gather it in an empty to-go drink cup; this time I gathered it into an empty bag from Wendy’s Drive Through.

I use oak skree  ceremoniously, the way some people use Sage, (*) but you have to watch out because oak skree burns FAST.  It is not a lazy, meditative smudging tool like Sage is!

(*) see “Uses of Sage,” in the next post.

Finding your totem animal(s)

My friend Brizos sent me a website the other day, about totem animals.  I didn’t like it as much as I like the website I always quote, so I’m not going to post it here.  But it made me think about how people find their totems.  I believe you don’t find your totem; it finds you.  I believe that when you sense the animal is special to you, then it is.   I believe that you don’t have to be in the animal’s presence, to know it is your totem.

We have many animals on our totem.  There is usually one that stands out and you know it.  Then there are other animals that have special roles and messages.

This subject is very detailed and isn’t suitable for a blog post.  Un-plug yourself from technology every so often so you can hear the Earth as she sends you messages, through her messengers.  Tap into the awesomeness of the Universe so that when Great Spirit speaks to you, you will hear it.  Meditate.  Make notes of the animals that come to you in meditations.  You’ll know when it is happening, that they are special to you.

If you don’t know how to meditate, then just go outside and explore.  Go for a walk.  Go for a swim.  Sit in a meadow.  Animals are all around us and are waiting to “walk” with us on this Earth.

New Moon on Solar Eclipse

Yellow Tree, blossoms full of bees by WhaleMaiden, July 2010

Today is the new Moon, and there is also a Solar Eclipse taking place.  Folks in South America are expected to be able to see the Eclipse.  I’m going to say ‘see’ with a certain emphasis, since it is important to wear protective eye-wear when viewing an eclipse.  (I read this weekend that one does not need to do so during totality…)

At any rate, since Southwest Florida is no where near the Easter Islands,   my friends gathered at our favorite spot to have a New Moon meditation for the Solar Eclipse.  As it turns out, we didn’t have a large gathering.  And, as it turns out we didn’t have a Meditation.  Since it is the New Moon, we did work which is called introspective.  We saw lots of animals:

  • We saw a Hawk landing on a power line as we were approaching our place.
  • Bees of all kinds in the Yellow Tree;
  • Frogs
  • Butterflies (Yellow and Monarch)
  • A large bug with purple body and black legs kept landing on one person.
  • Dragonfly
  • a Cricket hopped onto the Blanket; and we could hear cicadas
  • Spiders
  • more Hawks
  • Grasshopper
  • Brace of medium sized , black birds (there were “5 or 6 or maybe 7.”)
  • Jay Birds

We worked with a wonderful book called Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams and David Carson, with beautiful illustrations by Angela Werneke.  I’ve been working with this book and the totem cards since at least 1990. 

We used the Pathway Spread.  it consists of 7 cards which signify:

  1. Your Past.
  2. Your Present.
  3. Your Future.
  4. The Pattern or set of life lessons that is moving through your life.
  5. The Challenge you have Conquered or the lesson just Completed.
  6. What is working For you.
  7. What is working Against you.

It was about 90-95 degrees out and we had a nice spot in the shade, which was only a little damp!  Initially there was a nice breeze.  On our way to where the shady spot is, we walked past this tree with Yellow Flowers.  It was full of bees in every imaginable size.