Mermaid Tree

Exploring the complex, celebrating the simple

a question of Connection July 1, 2012

Filed under: Author: Tree — Mermaid Tree @ 2:36 pm
Tags: , , , ,

As a spiritually in touch person, for lack of a better term, I consider myself to be fairly unattached from material items. I’ve always grouped technology in with this. I’m okay being away from my computer, phone, etc. In fact I enjoy going “off the grid” and not needing to respond back to emails or texts right on time. However, I’ve realized that I’m okay without technology when it is on a voluntary basis. The storm that passed through the DC area Friday night knocked out power, cable and internet for a lot of people. Power was out at some of the water facilities for the County, so we were warned that there might be a water shortage.
On Saturday I went to the mall and it was absolutely packed – and not just as an escape from the heat. Since so many houses now use electric stoves, people couldn’t cook. The line in Panera was going through the store as people ordered huge bags of take away items. People were using the public bathrooms as shower/changing rooms. And EVERY SINGLE power outlet was found and used. iPads, cell phones, laptops – cords and wires running everywhere. Every column in the mall that had outlets in it, had a ring of people leaning against them. When those ran out, people started opening the utility outlets that are imbedded on the floor (presumably for the cleaning people to use) and were camped out in the middle of the mall floor to charge their items.
This was after a storm that lasted about 30 minutes. My mind couldn’t stop from asking the question “What if there really was a disaster? What would we do?” Even though I have power at home, my internet and cable is out and my phone reception is dodgy at best. So here I am, camped out in Noodles and Company using their free wi-fi. Without being able to reliably make a call, send an email, check Facebook, tweet, or instant stream on Netflix I can’t help but feel like I’m missing out on my weekend.
And if I still encounter this feeling as a “spiritual person”, then how will the rest of humanity handle it if there is a blackout for a larger area? for a longer period of time?
Being in the year 2012 makes one slightly more anticipatory of earth changes happening. But are we really ready? Do you actually have a plan in place for when our normal forms are communication are no longer accessible. If you can’t go to the mall (or Noodles and Company) to charge your technology for…a week? Or what if the Metro shuts down? These questions have always floated in my mind in theory, but now it’s striking more closely to home after this weekend. This post isn’t to get people all panicky. It’s simply to ask the question: how connected are you? Not technology connected; but deeply intuitively connected. It’s fine to miss scrolling through your newsfeed – we do exist in the modern world after all. But if something were to happen where communication is down for a large span of time, are you in touch enough with your inner guidance system to just “know” and trust where to go and what to do in an emergency. And do you have practical plans in place? Do you have a check in system with friends or family to meet at a certain location? Do you have water, canned food and toilet paper?
We all want change to happen. The start of a new age where we exist at a “higher” stage of awareness. But sometimes we forget that in order for creation to occur, destruction needs to come first to clear the way. So this is a call for reflection about the reality of the changes that we’ll be going through. Stay strong in your inner knowing. Stay connected to Heart, Great Spirit and Mother Earth. And be practical. Make plans, but recognize that you can’t cling to those plans. Everything changes in an instant. And don’t worry. All is as it should be.

Namaste.

 

Goddess Temples of Malta April 24, 2012

Island of Gozo, Malta

In the Mediterranean Sea on the small island of Malta, some of the oldest Goddess temples exist.  I was fortunate enough to visit some of the temple sites during my stay in Malta and experience their powerful and ancient energy.

Hagar Qim, Mnajdra and the Tarxien Temples are some of the larger and more well-preserved sites.  Archeological investigation has placed the construction of the first temple complexes between 3600  BCE and 2500 BCE, making them the oldest remaining standing stone structures in the world!  It was determined that these structures were used as places of worship due to the statues discovered in and around the complexes.  The figurines are made of stone and depict fertile looking women with generous proportions – the Mother Goddess.  These figurines are reminiscent of other statues found in Europe such as the Venus of Willendorf, which dates much further back to 24,000-22,000 BCE.  Some of the depictions are quite large in scale, such as the “Fat Goddess” statue which was discovered at the Tarqxien Temple.  The part of the statue that has survived through the years shows the lower half of a female body that is abundantly proportioned with large hips and thighs, giving it a sturdy appearance.    Although only the lower half of the statue remains, it has been determined that the complete statue would have measured around eight feet tall.

Statue of the "Fat Goddess"

Seeing this statue was an exquisite experience that reminded me of how long mankind has been able to look to the Mother Goddess for guidance, help and protection.  The icon of the abundant goddess continues to serve as a promise of her ability to bless our lives with all that we need.  Despite the overwhelming size, tourists and pilgrims cannot help but notice the simplistic beauty and sense of comfort that seems to emanate from the figure.  This is true for not only the statues, but for the entirety of the Temple site.

At first, the complexes can easily appear to be a jumble of same-colored rocks, heaped together over a large expanse.  But once the visitor enters into the area the maze of stones sorts itself out into an orderly structure.

Tarxien Temple

The layout of the Temples themselves are designed to signify the body of the Mother.  The passageways lead to rounded inner chambers, small and intimate in scale, that represent the womb of the goddess.  Red ochre stains that are believed to signify menstrual blood can still be seen on the walls.Walking through the passageways of the Temple ruins created a meditative quality in me.  I could actually feel something in my consciousness shift as I traveled through the passages.  I became…relaxed, centered.  My heart chakra opened more fully and my root chakra was firmly balanced.  The energy of the Temples and the presence of the Mother was so pervasive that I released worries and tension without even trying.  I explored the ruins with my roommate and she said something that truly struck a chord.  She said we were returning to the mother of us all.  And it was so true.

As I stood in the Temple chambers and absorbed the sacred energy I realized there was no need for me to struggle.  I let go of all the constant worries I carry around with me and sank into the comfort of the Mother.  I could feel her presence all around me.  As I surrendered all my concerns to the Divine Mother I felt blessings taking their place.

Before leaving each of the Temples my roommate and I made discreet offerings to the Great Goddess to express our thanks.  We poured water from our water bottles and crumbled up some of the crackers we had brought in our bags as snacks.  It was a small gesture but completely sincere.

Exploring the Temple ruins of Tarxien, Hagar Qim, and Mnajdra was a wonderful experience.  Although we do not know exactly how worship was carried out in the Temples, it is obvious that they played an important role in the people’s devotion to the Goddess.  And just as importantly, these sacred sites have survived – serving as a bridge connecting us to our brothers and sisters in the past who looked to the same Mother we still turn to today.

(I wrote this article for Circle Magazine and it was published in their Fall 2009 issue “Labyrinths” under the Sacred Sites section.  And of course, the roommate that I was traveling with was Mermaid, who I thank for the amazing pictures of the Fat Goddess and the Tarxien Temple!)

A meditation suggestion: Tap into the energy of these temples.  In a meditative state, see yourself walking through their paths.  Connect with the Great Goddess.  How do you feel?

Share your comments and experiences below.


 

Hopi Creation Story April 22, 2012

Filed under: Author: Tree — Mermaid Tree @ 11:29 pm
Tags: , ,

The Hopi Creation Story was used in the introduction of a book I read last year.  It has stayed with me and I read it often.

The Creator gathered all of Creation and said,

“I want to hide something from the humans until they are ready for it.  It is the realization that they create their own reality.”

The eagle said, “Give it to me.  I will take it to the moon.”

The Creator said, “No.  One day they will go there and find it.”

The salmon said, “I will bury it on the bottom of the ocean.”

The Creator said, “No.  They will go there, too.”

The buffalo said, “I will bury it in on the Great Plains.”

The Creator said, “They will cut into the skin of the earth and find it even there.”

Grandmother Mole, who lives in the breast of Mother Earth, and who has no physical eyes but sees with spiritual eyes, said, 

“Put it inside them.”

And the Creator said, “It is done.”

It’s all within us…  Powerful, yes?

 

Spiritual lessons found in the movie Avatar January 11, 2010

Filed under: Author: Tree,Uncategorized — Mermaid Tree @ 8:30 pm
Tags: , , , ,

“Everything is backwards now, like out there is the true world and in here is the dream.”

~Jake Sully, Avatar

The movie Avatar is action packed, drama filled, and best of all has an excellent story line with meaning.  I didn’t know anything about what the movie was based on, but it looked intriguing so I decided to go see it.  And, man was I impressed.  If you haven’t seen the movie then this entry might be a little confusing to follow, but I hope you give it a read anyway!  I don’t want to give the whole story-line away, so I’m not saying what specific characters do.  Honestly this entry only grazes the surface, but I wanted to point out some of the things that stood out most profoundly to me.  (My favorite part is the Soul/Body discussion.)  Please comment and discuss your views of the movie.  I’d love to hear what you think! (It’s fine to discuss specific events and characters in the comment section since other readers can just skip reading the comments if they haven’t seen the movie yet).

Focus on the Planet as a Mother:  One of the most obvious spiritual dynamics in Avatar is the native peoples’ belief in their deity.  The planet of Pandora is inhabited by the Na’vi people and their deity is Eywa.  Eywa is the living consciousness of the planet, the energy that permeates all things, creatures and people.  The Great Mother.  Eywa connects all things and keeps the balance of life.  

The roots of the plants and trees have an advanced network of roots that allows them to communicate with each other.  Most amazingly, the Na’vi can literally “tune in” to the planet through a physical link.  Every Na’vi has what looks like a sea-anemonea like extension that comes out of the end of their hair braid.  They can connect this extension to certain trees that act as “download” points on the planet.  Two such tress mentioned in the movie are the Tree of Voices and the Tree of Souls.  At the tree of Voices the Na’vi can hear the memories and voices of their ancestors.  Even though the bodies have passed away, their spirits return to Eywa and therefore never truly leave the Na’vi People.  The Tree of Souls is the place where the People can connect directly to Eywa.

The Na’vi are also able to connect with animals in the same way.  The animals have the same tentacle extension that the Na’vi do, allowing them to form a bond.  When the bond is established between Na’vi and animal, the Na’vi is able to communicate telepathically with the animal.

Soul/Body Differentiation:  Now this is the part that I LOVE.  The movie Avatar clearly illustrates that we are a soul, not a body.  The body houses the essence of who you are and allows you to have the experience of talking, moving, etc.  But that is not who you are.  YOU are a soul.  When you leave your body you do not cease to exist, you merely leave behind your physical form.  

In order to properly discuss this, I’m going to have to give some of the key points of the movie away!

First lets look at the significance of the movie name.  I’m taking the definition from Wikepedia because I like how it’s explained. “In Hinduism, Avatar refers to a deliberate descent of a deity from heaven to earth, and is mostly translated into English as ‘incarnation’, but more accurately as ‘appearance’ or ‘manifestation'” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Avatar).  In the movie an avatar is a body that has been grown with a mixture of Na’vi and human DNA.  A human can then “go into” his avatar body through a mental link.  His human body lies immobile while his consciousness inhabits the avatar.  

Of course this link is done through extremely advanced science.  BUT THEN….the power of Eywa is used at the end of the movie to actually transfer the life of one person from their human body into their avatar body.  The human body dies and soul moves into the avatar body.  

This was just amazing for me to see in a movie.  The differentiation between body and spirit couldn’t be made clearer!  

There are so many other wonderful aspects of this movie that I’d love to discuss.

Please share your thoughts!

 

New Years 2010: Blue Moon, Venus and the Number 3! December 31, 2009

Good bye to 2009 and hello 2010!  I have a wonderful feeling about 2010 – how can I not when there are so many wonderful things lined up to usher in the new year (and the new decade)?!  

First off, tonight is a Full Moon which means that there is a lot of energy bringing the new year in.  But EVEN BETTER is the fact that it is the SECOND full moon of the month – a Blue Moon!!!  Blue moons are very rare and are extremely powerful.  Blue moons bring luck and create an atmosphere filled with Magick.  You can use this energy to manifest a year that is wonderful beyond anything you can even imagine.  

Looking at the year numerologicaly we see that 2010 is a 3 year.  (2+0+1+0 = 3)  Three is a very significant number of cycles and completion.  It is the first number that has a beginning, middle and end.  Think of the spiritual significance attached to the number such as the Holy Trinity and the Triple Goddess – Maiden/Mother/Crone (each phase of the goddess signifies the human life stages of Birth/Life/Death).  

3 is also a number that relates to creativity.  

Now lets take a quick look at the significance of the day of the week.  January 1, 2010 is a Friday!  The year begins on the day of the week that is ruled by the planet Venus!!!  The year (and decade) begins on a day whose properties include love, friendship, peace and harmony.  How wonderful!

The Universe is giving us a great start to the year and decade – let’s make the most of it!  Lot’s of blessings )O(

 

Yule music! December 21, 2009

For your Yuletide enjoyment I am listing the following link.  The artist is in no way associated with this blog; I just happened to be searching for Yule music and found this online! The lyrics in this song really embody the significance of Yule.  I hope you enjoy!  Blessed Yule!

LYRICS:

Chorus:
Enter the night and you’ll find the light,
That will carry you to your dreams.
Enter the night, let your spirit take flight,
In the field of infinite possibilities

On the longest night we search for the light,
And we find it deep within.
Open your eyes to embrace what is wise,
And see the light of your own soul shining.

(Chorus)
Wrap up in the cloak of starry darkness my child,
And you’ll find the center of all things.
For from this space of the deepest dark place,
Life Eternal does spring.

(Chorus)
So when you find that spark
When you dream in the dark,
Hold it close to your heart and know.
All that you see is all that can be
When you give birth to the dreams of your soul.

(Chorus)

Music by Lisa Thiel

 

Winter Solstice 2009. Blessed Yule!

 

Yule Pentacle

 

The Winter Solstice, or Yule, is one of the major Sabbats in the Wheel of the Year.  Yule is the first Sabbat after Samhain.  If you’ll remember, we talked about how Samhain is a time of endings and beginnings…almost Void-like in quality. We can reflect on aspects of our lives that need to be released in order for there to be rebirth.  It is the season of “death” that is needed in order to make way for new life.  This new life is celebrated during the sabbat of Yule!

The Winter Solstice marks the shortest day of the year.  On this day the god (the Solar force) is reborn and his arrival brings the gradual lengthening of daylight.  Many cultures and religions have belief systems that recognize the birth of a god during this time of year.  

When Christianity gained a foothold, many of the various pagan Solstice traditions were incorporated by the Church.  This explains the many overlapping traditions and symbols that are used during Christmas such as the Christmas Tree and Mistletoe.  In many cases, these traditional Christmas symbols stem from the stories of pre-Christian gods.  (Please check back soon for another post discussing these gods and symbols).  This by no means negates the validity of any one religious path; rather it enhances the significance of this time of year – a time of joyous rebirth.  

As light returns to the world, so to does it return to our lives.  We have passed through the Sabbats that deal with endings.  Now the focus is on using the spark of rebirth to bring new vitality and accomplishments into our lives.  Yule is when you meditate and consult with your Higher Self about what your focus should be for the upcoming year.  Set goals for yourself and know that this is the perfect time to expect miraculous beginnings.  

Yule is such a joyous time of year – celebrate!  Gather with your friends and family to sing and eat together.  During one memorable Yule celebration, Mermaid, myself and several of our friends did a candle ceremony and then kept the festive energy going by singing “Walking in a Wiccan Wonderland!”  I have no idea who wrote the lyrics, but it was so much fun to take a popular winter song and use it in our Yule celebration.  

This is a time when blessings increase – open yourself up to receiving them.  Love and Joy to you on this wonderful day.

Blessed Be.