Betty’s note: Recently, my youngest brother, Steve died unexpectedly. I hope Grandmother Cottonwood’s words will resonate with those of you who’ve lost a loved one.
Now that a loved one has left his body behind and his spirit has crossed to the light, we must grieve this unimaginable change, this shattering of expectations, hopes and dreams, this kind and loving presence in our lives, now gone, this ground of the known universe, this brother that has been with us since earliest days.
In the blink of an eye, the measure of a breath, the beat of a heart, our lives have changed and we are forced to let go, to allow his spirit to continue on in a new form, in a new dimension, one that is not so easy to wrap our minds and hearts around.
His physical form has left the building, but his spirit, the expansive peaceful part of him that is love, that is eternal and indestructible, lives on.
Dear ones, please take time during the busy season to rest and take care of yourself.
In this season, there is so much human busyness – rushing, doing, trying to beat the clock, meet the deadline, make the holiday celebration perfect, trying to please one and all, beat the crowds, put on a magnificent feast.
You run yourself ragged and you wear yourself down! You override your body’s natural rhythms and needs, pushing yourself over the limit of endurance. Another word for this is “stress”.
Can you pull back, breathe, regroup, rethink, and slow down?
Find your center. Bring your awareness to your heart and breath. Tune into your innate wisdom. What is most important to you this year as you celebrate your holiday? What can you let go of?
For your health and sanity, let go of the elaborate expectations and preparations that you do not enjoy! Let go of extra events and “must-dos” you have to squeeze into your busy schedule. If others expect things you do not want to deliver, let them do the work, take the time, make the effort!
What activities will satisfy your soul and connect you with love to family and friends without overwhelm?
Do those things! They can be so simple and easy! Play a board game, sing songs, read a book together. Go for a walk, have a heart to heart conversation.
Remember the real heart of the season, gathering with those you love and enjoying each other, greeting the sun, creating light, love and warmth together.
A woman in her autumn years can release the excess, the unneeded, from her life, the outdated thoughts, feelings, the extra objects, the people who drag her down, the dead weight, the job that does not feed her soul, the old dreams that no longer feed her passions.
Nearly full moon
She can let go of worry about her looks… She can let go, let go, and let go again, only to find there is more to let go of.
When she is empty and hollow and rests in her emptiness, she will be filled once again with new dreams that inspire, with passion to create, a new unconditional love for others, a knowing of her inner power and strength. She will know in every cell her indestructible inner beauty and light, she will focus with clarity on what really matters to her and to the planet that is her home. She will be graced with full acceptance of her many gifts.
As the moon wanes each month to complete darkness and waxes once again to full light in the age old cycle, you too must let go, and let go again, so you can be refilled, refreshed, filled with new energy. You who know and own yourself!
Live your life from the inside out. Let your life rest on the inner wisdom, light and love that power and fuel you! Everything else is like leaves in autumn.
Rest for a little while. Let go of all you normally hold tight to, letting go of control for a time. Allow your beautiful selves the luxury and freedom of nothing to worry about, nothing to push for, nothing to do, nothing to think. Simply be with no agenda for a time.
Dream with me. Remember the earth memories deep in our cells from the ancestors- the primeval forests, vast herds of grazing animals, clear flowing waters, wide stretches of unbroken prairie, lakes filled with fish of all descriptions, towering forests standing thousands of years, our roots gripping the cool rich earth, reaching toward the sun, anchoring us to this place.
Within all creatures reside the deep primal memories of nature in balance, of peace and harmony.
Allow yourself to enter into a meditation where you imagine letting go of everything you own, your body, your identity, everything you think and feel, until only your brilliant inner light is left.
Sunlight covered by clouds
Surrender for a little while your grasp on the physical objects around you. Imagine that there is nothing you need to keep track of, nothing to count, nothing to organize or pay for. Surrender all of it.
Now imagine if you can, your precious physical body dissolving until you are nothing but energy. Release it.
Now imagine letting go of your thoughts, feelings, beliefs, and your identity. Release what is in your mind and heart. You are simply allowing yourself to be with no agenda, no worries, no regrets.
Finally, imagine your spirit floating free and expansive, with nothing weighing it down.
Now, as you enter into this great silence, know the pure light at your center.
Now, slowly come back to your physical existence, retrieving those thoughts, beliefs and feelings that are good for you. Leave the others behind. Now imagine your body regenerating in a way that pleases you. Now once again surround yourself with the objects around you, those that are useful, those that you love. Let the others go.
Allow yourself to feel gratitude for your existence and all the blessings you have in your life.
Let me repeat: You are the light. Your light is the foundation your entire life is built on and the blueprint for your body. Feel it, be it, know it.
Let the breeze shimmer your leaves. Rest with trust in your roots and the earth that supports you.
You can afford a day of rest, of letting go… Letting your mind be clear and blank… settling in to your body, feeling the ripples of thought and feeling that come and go. Now going deeper and feeling the blood coursing through you, the weight of muscle, the bone and skin, the breath as it expands your lungs and ribs, your eyes fluttering beneath their lids…
Let your tense muscles relax. It’s OK to let parts of you be soft and relaxed on your lazy summer day. It’s OK to do nothing but breathe and let your heart beat, your eyes blink, to feel the life course through your body.
Now, just for today, lose the agenda, the to do list, the killer instinct, the high heels, the dress for success, the act you feel you must put on. (Is this you?) Who invented suits and ties? Why?
You are so much more than what you do! Get to know yourself beneath the persona, the snappy business attire, the synthetic rules someone has imposed upon you, your place as a cog in the “system”.