Saturday, February 20, 2010

Thoughts on Midwinter

Midwinter - a time of reflection, regeneration, assessment and planning for the upcoming year's harvest. Short days, long nights. Hibernation. Weather changes and storms blowing down from the North. Remembering the change of seasons and connecting to all that is. Colors of white, grey, brown ... and green in California!

Each season has a purpose in our existence.

For most indigenous cultures, the Winter is the season of the Air Element and the North direction. Winter is the season for Manifestation.

The Air Element is the element of the Mind - of freedom of movement, higher vision, and inner spiritual renewal. AIR is the second primary element of creation. Air has no boundaries. Life on Earth begins and ends with Air. This element is also called the Wind Element. Wind moves vast amounts of Air around, bringing change and clarity - the phrase "clearing the Air" describes the action of Wind. The Air Element governs the Third Eye and Crown Chakras. Air energy is transparent. Gemstones for Air/Wind help us to enhance vision, understanding and mental clarity. Often colors of Blue and Violet, Air/Wind gemstones include Blue Aragonite, Blue Calcite, Blue Aventurine, Tanzanite, Iolite, and Fluorite, among others.

Cultural Anthropologist, author and educator Angeles Arrien (one of my teachers) developed the Four Fold Way that draws on cross cultural traditions, ancient wisdom and shamanic traditions for applications in contemporary journeys. She teaches that Winter is the season of the Warrior. Warriors are leaders. They must develop and practice responsibility and discipline, and understand the impact of all actions - those taken and also those not taken. Warriors are willing to take a stand. The Rattle is the tool of Winter and the Warrior.

We can all use the time and lessons of Winter to reflect on our actions and the results of the past year, and identify where we need to change and grow for the year now unfolding.

The Earthpath Artisans Team of Etsy is conducting a Midwinter Challenge. Go to the Earthpath Blog (see below). Check out the creative submissions on the topic of Midwinter and vote for your favorite (mine is the Intention Basket Talisman - hint!)

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Year of the Tiger

Mid February - and Chinese New Year is here. 2010 is the Year of The Tiger.

The Tiger in Chinese cultural traditions is a true force of Nature. One of the most dynamic signs in the Chinese zodiac, Tiger is unpredictable, fearless, and highly protective. With camoflage colors of black, gold, orange and white, Tiger is linked to the Moon - particularly the full and new moons.

Individuals born in the Year of the Tiger - and those with Tiger as their Totem Animal - are typically lucky, courageous, dynamic, attractive. They can also be stubborn and impatient. Often do their best work at night.

The arrival of Tiger indicates a year of unpredictability, new adventures, and passion.

This Talisman's gemstones capture Tiger's Fire and Water energies to connect one to their Tiger totem, bringing energies of Strength, Passion, and Transformation. The minerals include Tigers Eye, exceptionally rare Padparadsha, and rare Black Spinel and Blue Aventurine. An exquisite handcrafted copper Adinkra headpin symbolizes "Grace and Adaptability Under Pressure". The smudge includes mint, lavender, rosemary, and Plum blossoms!

SFEtsy - Tuesday Treasury - updated 16 Feb 2010 - features my Tiger Talisman and other beautiful Tiger-themed items for Year of the Tiger. Check out the blog!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Spiritual Healers and Shamans - Responding to the Call for Help

Spiritual Healers and shamans have been part of humanity's spiritual practices in all cultures on Earth from the most ancient human tribes to today's world of science and advanced medicine.

Today I came across a thoughtful posting on shamanism and the role of healers that stimulated my thinking:

The great challenge of the 21st century is to wage peace on a globe full of humans while repairing the unintended damage we've inflicted on ourselves, other beings, and the earth. We need modern shamans to channel ancient "technologies of magic" like empathy, creativity, art, and spiritual interconnection, through "magical technologies" like medicine, computers, and satellites. That marriage of ancient and cutting-edge genius can heal hearts, minds, beasts, plants, ecosystems - almost anything. (Martha Beck, Ph.D, writing on World Healers, in What Matters Now.)

As an experienced Spiritual Healer and student of shamanism, I continually explore new techniques, practices, research, and information so that I can be the best possible channel for healing energy. In my current work with gemstone healing, I have encountered many powerful, gratifying stories of individuals who have experienced success in working with gemstone talismans for healing and meditation.

The call to serving as a healer and shaman comes from within, and is based on the individual's inherent capabilities and spirit guides. Even so, all of us have some healing ability to contribute to each other, and to our planet. Intention is the strongest force in the universe. Each one of us can state our intentions for ourselves, our work. Talismans help focus the energy and bring together the natural powers of the minerals with the essence of the body (human, animal, and plant) to begin healing and manifestation. And research has shown that prayers [or thoughts] for the healing of oneself or another really work!

Have an interesting healing experience to share? I'd love to hear from you! Post your comment below (subject to moderator approval).

For further information, here are some suggestions to start with:

Foundation for Shamanic Studies:

National Spiritualist Association: http//

Books by Larry Dossey, MD on prayer and healing