Lessons from Hurricanes Long Since Passed

One of the biggest Lessons from Hurricanes Long Since Passed, is how to ask for help, as a grown up.

In my culture, I was taught as a person growing up, that I was to become an independent, self-sufficient adult. And I did this: I went to college, I got an entry-level job in my field when I graduated, I paid off my college loans. I moved up through hard work and strategic promotions, year after year. My life was stable and predictable, and I didn’t need too much help, too often. Ocassionally, I needed help moving from one place to another, and rounded up friends, treating them to pizza and beer afterwards. My friends asked me to help them, and I reciprocated.

All that changed on August 13, 2004, when the WINDS from Hurrucane Charley tore the porch roof off my house and rolled it over the roof of the house, and tossed it in the front yard. The RAINS, driven by hurricane -force winds, poured through the gash in my roof, over my kitchen appliances, and flooded my entire house.

For a few days, I tried to take care of this problem –this disaster– all by myself, because, I Am A Grownup!

One day, some friends of mine from work came over to help me put up a tarp. These two grown men got on the roof with a ladder and I handed them a roll of visquine plastic I’d obtained in a frenzy, and they yelled down, “You need Help with this!” Up until then, it did not ocurr to me that I couldn’t solve this problem on my own.

I didn’t even know who to ask for help at that point, but the answers came in a confluence of coordinated helpers: my fire department, the Red Cross, my insurance company, a “dry out specialist,” the Federal Emergency Management Agency, (FEMA), a home restoration contractor, and their honestly good guys, and two families from my church, who housed my family for the next two months.

So, along with the lessons of the elements, Honorable Shamans and Fellow Pagans, the lessons of Wind and Rain and flooding, came this lesson which I am still absorbing and appreciating, 13 years later.

Be kind to yourself. Ask for help when you need it. Sometimes, you may not realize that what you are going through is in fact, bigger than you can handle alone, or by your self. That it is, in fact, a disaster. When in doubt, ask for help It’s a grown-up thing to do.

Now, review your Hurricane Plans, monitor the weather, and understand, there is so much help out there for you.

Share your peace with Mother Earth and Father Sky and the Big Waters all around us.

(c) 2017 to present, Whale Maiden for the Earthways Shamanic Path. All rights reserved.

Thoughts on Tribe

THOUGHTS ON TRIBES.  Are you in a Tribe of any kind?  Are you in more than one Tribe?  How big are your Tribes?  Where do they overlap or intersect?  How did you find this Tribe?  How did you gain admission or acceptance?  What are the goals and mission of the Tribe?

A Tribe, for the purposes of this post, is a group of people who may or may not be related by family status, who.have shared values and a shared mission, and meet on a regular basis to do things in support of this mission, but who are not necessarily organized as a 501 (c) (3) organization. 

Over the past year or two, I’ve noticed that more and more of my friends, are referring to the naturally formed groups of friends and family/non-family members as “Tribes.”  It may be that I mingle with groups that are predominantly “hippie,” but the hippie mindset isn’t a requirement of Tribe.  People who graduate in a commencement, may feel a close affinity, and may describe tgat as a Tribe.   I am thinking about this this morning, Honorable Shamans and Fellow Pagans.

When I was #HuntingWaves yesterday, I was thinking about how many Tribes I am in, and I’m in at least three.  Except for the Water Warriors (a subset of which are folks who support the Water Blessing Ceremonies in some way, ) most Tribes don’t have a set name; they just exist.

Facebook helps all these Tribes stay in touch and network.  Oh, I just remembered my 4th Tribe.  And my 5th one.  One is about water.  One is about music.  And the other three are various branches of my spiritual growth and development.

Photo caption:  a Tribe graduating, May 2017.

Does your participation in your Tribes help you share your peace with Mother Earth and Father Sky and the Big Waters all around us?  

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

Talking to Plants:  feel the connections

On my present journey, during the day, I go outside and walk among the plants.  The green calls me in, deeper and deeper.  I sniff the air, and take in the scents.  How can I describe these smells, these different shades of green?  They are familiar smells, since I grew up with them.  Arbor vitae, linden tree, rhododendron… When I was young and lived here, I never noticed these smells at all.  Now I perceive them as individual notes.

Some plants are sleeping when I approach, and I let them sleep.  Others are awake and call to me, to tell me their names.  Not their scientific name, or their colloquial name.  But the name they call themselves.

 I visit each plant, reach out and run my fingers on a branch, or a tendrils or blossom.  On it, over it, like you might trace your fingers on you loved one’s face, or their back. 

Yes, some of these plants may have healing properties, or they may make a good smudge substance.  But at the beginning, you have to remember, we are all connected.  When you go out and talk to the plants, Honorable Shamans and Fellow Pagans, you will feel this to be true.  Touch the plants and take time to speak with them.  Share your Peace with Mother Earth and Father Sky, and the Big Waters all around us.

For more information about the Earthways Shamanic Path visit, http://www.earthwaysshamsnicpath.com

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

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.

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.

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.)

Holding Space for Each Other

I’ve been going through some changes for a few months.  Three months, definitely.  Maybe more.  Maybe six.  I haven’t been able to give my all, and some times, I haven’t been able to give, at all.  I’ve had moments where I rallied, and right now, I am thankful for the concept of Holding Space.

And the people around me, held me close in their hearts, and yet, made space, too.
Honorable Shamans and Fellow Pagans, I’ll give you some examples of Holding Space which I have seen over the past few months:

  • In groups, I held on, (I was making space for another person who was going through an even rougher time than me,)  while  we added administrators.  Or, people stepped forward to fill in the void, posting good articles and quotes.  In classes, new people stepped forward, willing to teach, and to continue sharing  the gifts of knowledge.  I stepped back, and felt the healing power of allowing that gift to take place, that space.
  • Holding Space is very simple.  Sometimes it means, being there, when someone needs to talk.  Or not talk.  Maybe they simply need to hear you breath, or see the little blinking lights flicker in Messenger, the sign that someone is out there, communicating, and holding space for me.
  • Holding Space is also when a person opens up in a sacred circle, and shares something that has been weighing on their mind, heart, soul, and they finally feel ready to share this, and in that moment, they are held by the respect of the circle, listened to and not judged.  Given the space they need.
  • Other times in the past few months, people have invited me to their table.  They added an extra chair and a plate, and assured me there was plenty of the good stuff to go around, we would all be nurtured, fed, held in that space. 
  • I was able to Hold Space when serving as a liasion between two groups, working separately to achieve common goals.

If you held space for me recently, thank you.  If I held space for you, you’re welcome.

Share your Peace with Mother Earth and Father Sky, and with the Big Waters all around us, for we are all connected.

(c) 2017 to present, by Whale Maiden for the Earthways Shamanic Path.  All Rights Reserved.

40,000 Posts

Fourty-thousand posts, rushing round and round my head…

With the paraphrased song from Traffic rushing through my head, I am thinking of the two, or three, or four essays I want to post next.

  • Perhaps I will address the concept I GOT recently, that I am “soverign-yet-connected,” in truth, all of us are, actually.
  • Or, I could develop my thread about freedom.  I am blessed to be experiencing a lot of it right now.  
  • Maybe I can figure out what the Green Spiral meant for me, recently.  Is that about a fern?  Or the heart chakra?  What or who do I love? 
  • What about the Fey and how they fit into the Earthways Shamanic Path cosmology?  I’m well known for my personal love of glitter, however, the Veil is very, very thin right now, and we must be careful not to be frivolous with The Fey.

Yes, it is time for me to write about something…

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

The Shamanic Practice: Dance Trance

You’re looking at a dance floor at a festival. This time of year, part of my Daily Shamanic Practice involves Dancing, or thinking about Dancing.

There’s a festival circuit that runs through Florida for three months, and during that time, I’m fortunate to attend some of the festivals, each year.

Honorable Shamans and Fellow Pagans, this aspect of my Shamanic practice takes priority over everything else I might do, this time of year.

I’ve been doing  this for a few years, following two or three bands, sometimes traveling great distances to see them perform.

I’ve been following one band specifically  for several years.  When I am not actively dancing with this particular band, I am playing their music on my car stereo… over and over.  So, I know their songs.  I’ve heard them live, and recorded, with different band members playing different parts:  I know their songs, the way you know the curves of your lovers’ face.

Which means, when I get up to dance to their songs, I am free.

 I am free to dance, and so, I do.  Their sets are 45 minutes long, and I dance the whole time they are playing.  It’s an unspoken agreement. They play, I dance.

When I dance, part of my mind is involved with staying upright.  The other part is engaged in a Dance Trance, and I am flying. This is deep work for my soul, and is  the reason I can dance for 45 minutes, or more…  it is my passion.
Find your passions, Dear Shamans, and follow your Heart.

Doing so, you will share your peace with Mother Earth and Father Sky and the big Waters all around us.

(c) 2017 to present, Whale Maiden for the Earthways Shamanic Path.  All rights reserved.