We are moving into the shortest day of the year, the “dark night of the soul” with the Solstice next week. For years, the winter lodges at bear creek have been the most difficult, as we are on the Pacific Crest trail and get lots of rain and snow. Continue reading “Winter Solstice 2020”
One of my many past relationships was a hauntingly beautiful woman who studied with a Cherokee Medicine woman. She was/is herself a sound healer. Along with blessing my store, this Grandmother did classes in my home on working with crystals and stones and led students through the four ceremonies of each season and direction and the four elements of air, fire, earth, and water. The forgiveness ceremonies of the eastern tribes including Cherokee Peoples as I have read and learned from this Grandmother, were done in the fall – the ripening time prior to the harvest. The Green Corn Ceremonies were the time of year to release all “resentments” and forgive all people who have harmed us and as 12 step recovery Continue reading “Autumn Equinox”
Our Summer Solstice Celtic sweat lodge Ceremony will be held on June 20th, and this lodge will be different than those in the past, in that those who intend to sweat are being asked to show up Thursday or Friday in order to prepare for the Ceremony. I hope to get out on Wednesday or Thursday morning so that I have time to prepare myself. We also ask that those doing the lodge bring camper, tent and sleeping bag as bear creek gets cool at night. Bring enough food for yourself and some to share, but leave nothing behind. If you plan on attending, you must let me know, as it looks like our lodge is nearly full. Women, bring a sweat dress, a towel, food and water and warm clothing. We have a large shop
with kitchen and bathroom and one refrigerator and one freezer with ice-maker, so coolers are nice as we have limited space. Those who want to be a part of the South Door Summer Solstice Ceremony can arrive later, but those entering the lodge must be here the day before the Ceremony. We have folks driving from back east to sweat with us, so please inform me if you can meet the above, and I will send the protocol.
We respect social distancing, so we ask everyone to honor their own beliefs and values. For me, I need touch to keep my soul alive.
My 20 acres are in Carson, Washington, and the address is 92 bear creek Lane, Carson, WA 98610
We have bear creek frontage for camping, If you plan on attending, I will send protocol, but if you are lodging, you must come for the weekend rather than in and out on Saturday. We welcome supporters who can watch after things during our lodge. Kelvin, Emily and Koru have been working hard to clean up bear creek and lots of preparation, projects and chores that can use a hand. All who attend are asked to sign a release form prior to Ceremony. We will have an orientation/talking circle on Friday Evening, so send me your email and Blessings, Patrick
The west direction and the slow decent into darkness is the time to both forgive ourselves and learn from silence and solitude. In attaining mastery over anything requires this “hero’s journey” – the decent into our darkness. From my surrender to alcoholic insanity and learning to lend a hand. AA taught me to discern the difference of lending a hand and giving a handout. By loving and forgiving ourselves first, we learn the noble truth of it is in the giving that we receive. The fall is learning and practicing fire tending. How to warm up and slow down. We first learn to tend our souls fire. Learning and practicing nurture. Step seven of the 12 steps is “we humbly asked spirit to lift our barriers to love”. I can’t “fix” myself. Humility is seeking to deflate the falseness and to surrender the past. I love the words from the healing song “Pacha Mama” – “Theirs no high, theirs no low, there is nowhere you need to go, just inside of you is a star, saying just be as you are. We carry the light into the darkness.
. Acceptance is the key to all of our problems. the soul tending is going into nature to heal. Going into the silence and darkness are what Grandmother bear and the trees are teaching us in late September.. Nature is wearing her coat of many colors as she reminds us to go within. We had a great sweat lodge, and prayed to the stone people to lift our spirits by letting go of the toxic poisons, anger and underlying tears, opinions, and beliefs we have ingested.
We line our lodge with cedar boughs on the earth. The stone people and the cedars can take our rage and anger and transform them. When we clear the belly of self defeating beliefs, we access our hearts songs. From lead to gold. From rape into noble passion – gratitude, Hope, kindness and love of life and art. Living a life of heart and meaning means following what has heart and meaning. The drum, drum making and drumming have taught me that. Together we can do anything. United we stand, divided we fall. Take down your barriers and let the emotions flow – letting go of worry and doubt and remembering the words of great teachers like Maya Angelou: “It’s one of the greatest gifts you can give yourself, to forgive. Forgive everybody”.. And that begins with me.
All is well and all will be well
They can be a great help—–words. They can become the spirit’s hands…and lift….and caress.“The Spirits Hands” – Meister Eckhardt
I wrote this in 2013, and edited it..
What a wonderful weekend we had in the beauty and mystery of bear creek and nature. Words, silence, space and drumming. On Saturday, as we were sitting in circle by our medicine wheel
, and a doe and her faun came to visit us. Spirit was there, and magic was afoot. Bear Creek contains the mysteries, which exists in the present moment. The Mysteries is where truth meets beauty and heals the people and culture. Mysteries can put us in a hypnotic trance or altered state. The term mesmerized came form the research of Franz Mesmer who began this work in the 1700’s and was most popular in Europe, Germany and America. Benjamin Franklin was involved in a scientific study to prove the presence and healing power of “animal magnetism”. (including the indigenous people’s belief that animals have powers and can heal us.) I have been mesmerized many times in nature. The verb mesmerize is to hold the attention of (someone) to the exclusion
of all else: “she was mesmerized”; “a mesmerizing stare”. The 28 classes I teach a year is all based on the sacred circle, or wheel that is eternal. In order to earn the “gifts” of each direction, we must learn about releasing the victim/predator consciousness and move from wannabes and “I need to” toward willingness, which sets in the center of the circle. (your own hoop)
In recovery, acceptance and willingness are the keys to earning the promises much like the medicine wheel, and the gifts of the four directions which have to be earned through will or Volition.
Volition has five steps
The first step of volition is attention. In my years of play therapy I practiced the Zen of “ball watching”, often referred to as tennis. My teacher was an ex professional tennis player and holistic studies master. We would go three to four times a week for hours with the simple agenda to hit the ball to each other. I hadn’t played like that since childhood, and was resisted to the idea, since my agenda had been to “beat” someone, and then to sabotage myself. I slowly broke my addiction to competition with others and began to come to my senses – in this case my eyes. His mantra was “to see or not to see”. He would often catch the ball and ask me which way the seams were turning? I went from “I don’t know” to actually seeing the ball, and not get caught up in planning results (looking at where I wanted to ball to end up rather than seeing the ball) and noticing I was holding my breath.
and what my breath was doing, teaching me to be totally absorbed in the ball, truly seeing and detached from thought…seeing each moving shot anew. This would lead me into an incredible state of concentration, where time disappeared, my body started making moves that I had no idea it could make, all following my commitment to see the ball. I have entered t
I have entered that same state on a day of fly-fishing. The path to the mysterium is the walk into nature. Angeles Arrien in her book “The Second Half of Life” refers to the gates of wisdom, the passages we are invited to pass through, and one of these is the clay gate, which is about sensuality and sexuality, calling this gate “the gate you will never understand” The creative fires in me were awakened this amazing weekend. I am in town for a day, and I head back out to bear creek to feed my soul and spirit. The four places to tend to the soul’s fire are the deep woods, the mountains, the desert and the seashore. I am learning to tend my souls fire by being in nature. Blessings, Patrick
Following a break for six months, I am beginning my teaching and healing circles on Oct. 16th in our “Heartspace ” above the store at 2239 E. Burnside. Continue reading “Teachings of the West – Autumn’s gifts”
Thanksgiving may have its roots that cut across the different ways we still have ritual and Ceremony. Christians have a way way of giving Thanks, as do most on the Red Road, as when we are aligned with the elements (in balance and grateful), magic begins to happen. Continue reading “Thanksgiving”