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Archive for December, 2009

Here is my take on eating…

Eating is the most extreme relationship I can think of. If we have a fight, we come together, get violent and hit each other. But then we separate and go our different ways to heal up. If we kill someone, they are buried and we go to jail or try to move on in life if was accidental. If we have a lover, we come together in deep physical intimacy, and may even join momentarily in intercourse. But then we separate again. But with food, it is extreme. We kill it. And then we take it to a step further by totally ingesting it, taking all of it into our being to be processed and made a permanent part of us.

There are other relationships I can think of with the same dynamic, but they are far less tangible. We take in knowledge. We take in inspiration. We take in sensation. These go deep into our being and become part of us as well. But none of these examples are as clear as the eating of food. In reality, physical food isn’t all that different from mental and spiritual food. An apple is the pure creativity expressed from the inspiration of an apple tree. The song of a bard really isn’t all that different from the apple. It is pure energy or “spirit” at the core of it all. And it is all the creative result of the expression of inspiration.

With eating, it is easy for us to see, hear, touch, taste and smell the food. Yet, we constantly do this without any consciousness involved. We mindlessly munch our food as we are involved with other things. I think it is vital that we begin to listen to our food, to acknowledge that we are taking part of another soul into our being. We are making it part of us. I want to take in living healthy food that is humming with nutrition and beauty. I want to be aware of how that food feels inside of me. I want to acknowledge its creativity and honor its sacrifice. I need to remind myself to do this everyday.

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So I am working from home today. The gods of snow and ice are expressing themselves in power and beauty. In my path of Druidry, I don’t challenge or submit to deity. It is too dangerous a prospect. So in honor of the gods, I am at home, respecting, watching and listening to them.

My gods are the gods of Nature. These gods are completely real and present. It isn’t an abstraction. Nature is simply the gods creativity. Through touching Nature, we touch the gods, we touch holiness, we experience the presence of divinity. Anyone, at anytime, can do this and find inspiration, direction, clarity, purpose and meaning in life. To me, touching the divine through our relationship to Nature is the very definition of the path of the pagan.

What are your gods? How do you experience them?

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Doing the Simple Things

I am sitting at work feeling distracted, feeling bored, feeling half awake, feeling disconnected. This is a lousy way to go through the day. Even though I would rather be elsewhere, letting myself slide into this mindset isn’t helpful.

The gap between the mundane and the spiritual needs to come together. The spiritual experience has to come to work with me or there will always be conflict. As much as I dream of it, I doubt very much that I will suddenly have enough money to buy land and build a home outright. So what can be done to improve the work experience?

We have to be mindful to do the simple things.

First of all, let’s remember to breathe consciously. One word used to describe the in-breath is inspiration. Stopping the constant conversation going on in our head is so important. A single conscious breath is all it takes to wake up from that place. The simple act of breathing the air around us can help us find “inspiration”.

Food is another way to wake up to the fact we are alive (and no matter where we are, that is a truly remarkable thing). Look at your food. Touch it. Where did it come from? Who grew it? What has its life process been? What stories does it tell you? Then eat it with a sense of reverence and gratitude. It may be simple food but simplicity and sanctity, are not mutually exclusive terms. Taste your food fully. It is the most amazing gift from Mother Earth.

Have you ever half-listened to a co-worker or customer during a phone call? Is this treating the other with respect? Is this way of approach interaction honorable? Let the phone ringing remind us that we are engaging in relationship to another soul. It is through these interactions we come to understand ourselves. It is how we learn. So even the most annoying phone calls are in fact acts of spiritual learning and experience.

Finally, stand up and move around! We sit on the way to work. If we have a desk job, we sit all day. We sit on the ride home. We sit at dinner. And then we sit some more to relax. Moving the body is about the best way to awaken to our soul’s journey. Movement allows us to feel our whole being. So get off the chair and make yourself more alive. As soon as I post this, I am going for a walk!

Not the most insightful post but there it is :>) If our spiritual practices get complicated, they are doomed to be ineffective. Anyone have any other simple suggestions for making our work day a more alive, interesting, and spiritual activity?

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