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Saturday, January 31, 2015

Remembering the Ancient Ways

In recent days I have been preparing a program that I taught to teens about a decade ago for a younger audience. I came across this list and found my program outline within it. The Native American culture is highly spiritual and places a great emphasis on the respect for Mother Earth, Father Sky, Grandfather Sun and Grandmother Moon as well as all living and non-living objects. Perhaps in reading this you will find guidelines for your next endeavor as well... may you be blessed!

1. Rise with the sun to pray. Pray alone. Pray often. The Great Spirit will listen, if you only speak.
2. Be tolerant of those who are lost on their path. Ignorance, conceit, anger, jealousy and greed stem from a lost soul. Pray that they will find guidance.
3. Search for yourself, by yourself. Do not allow others to make your path for you. It is your road, and yours alone. Others may walk it with you, but no one can walk it for you.
4. Treat the guests in your home with much consideration. Serve them the best food, give them the best bed and treat them with respect and honor.
5. Do not take what is not yours whether from a person, a community, the wilderness or from a culture. It was not earned nor given. It is not yours.
6. Respect all things that are placed upon this earth – whether it be people or plant.
7. Honor other people’s thoughts, wishes and words. Never interrupt another or mock or rudely mimic them. Allow each person the right to personal expression.
8. Never speak of others in a bad way. The negative energy that you put out into the universe will multiply when it returns to you.
9. All persons make mistakes. And all mistakes can be forgiven.
10. Bad thoughts cause illness of the mind, body and spirit. Practice optimism. 
11. Nature is not for us, it is a part of us. They are part of your worldly family.
12. Children are the seeds of our future. Plant love in their hearts and water them with wisdom and life’s lessons. When they are grown, give them space to grow.
13. Avoid hurting the hearts of others. The poison of your pain will return to you.
14. Be truthful at all times. Honesty is the test of ones will within this universe.
15. Keep yourself balanced. Your Mental self, Spiritual self, Emotional self, and Physical self, all need to be strong, pure and healthy. Work out the body to strengthen the mind. Grow rich in spirit to cure emotional ails.
16. Make conscious decisions as to who you will be and how you will react. Be responsible for your own actions.
17. Respect the privacy and personal space of others. Do not touch the personal property of others, especially sacred and religious objects. This is forbidden.
18. Be true to yourself first. You cannot nurture and help others if you cannot nurture and help yourself first.
19. Respect others religious beliefs. Do not force your belief on others.
20. Share your good fortune with others. Participate in charity.

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

A Sale That Will Warm Your Heart!

The fire is roaring at Oshun Spirit today!

Oh Baby It's Cold Outside! Warm up with 20% OFF STOREWIDE til midnight tonite - 
enter code FIRESIDE20 at checkout.  



Sunday, January 4, 2015

Ringing in the New Year with an Aha Moment

Once upon a time, this painting changed my life. I call it an "aha moment."

Back in 1999, I was teaching a program that I created called "Ancient Ways" in collaboration with the New Hampshire Teen Institute, NH Court Diversion/Juvenile Justice, and our local Mental Health providers. It was good stuff, teaching the ancient ways to young people - watching them sprout and blossom, grow mighty wings, and fly with great confidence. Heal. Thrive. Live. Give!

As Ancient Ways became noticed and noteworthy I became a program director and then the executive director of several non profits. Within a few years time I wrote similar programming for other agencies, traveled, gave lectures, presentations, workshops, wrote grants, crunched numbers, and I got further and further away from what I really wanted to do - teach the program.

This image -  of a teacher and her students connected to the body and spirit of nature and watched over by the ancestors, both human and non - is my good friend. Over the years it has hung on the walls of my classrooms, in meditation rooms, and at a holistic health center. But it was in the Reiki healing room of a local youth center when it really spoke to me.

As a good friend often does, it reminded me to take a moment to breathe when I began to wonder just what the hell I was doing... and why. It was while I was gazing at this artwork on that one day, exhausted and unfulfilled, that I stopped the madness.

14 years pass quickly.

I found my old friend several weeks ago, after its long absence from my daily awareness, carefully wrapped and tucked away in a box marked 2001 program materials. I was rooting around in the box because I have gone back to teaching a few local programs, and I needed some notes.

As I picked it up, I had another "aha moment." Truth chills and a long exhale.

Hello Old Friend!

It's time to get back to the work I was intended to do. Trust the Universe. Invite the students. Teach the Ancient Ways. I hung the painting on the wall of my office, set my intention, and placed my phone on the table below it. It rang.

Happy New Year - it's going to be a great one!
May we all be blessed,