Heart Space

The mysteries of Nature

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..

bear creek medicine wheel

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

seeing the ball turning

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

Winter Solstice Sweat

The Winter Solstice sweat lodge is coming up next Saturday at our land at bear creek “Heartspace” in Carson, Washington. Preparation is 90% of Ceremony so I have been reflecting on what I need to let go of that no longer serves me – self defeating patterns. Our lodge is almost full, so let me know if you would like to participate. As always, we will share food afterward.
Many years ago at New Grange in Ireland, I heard the old story that on the light of the winter solstice, the spirits of things that have died in the past year go out on the light of the winter solstice – the ending of the old – the resentments and anger and the beginning of the new – the return of the light.

Silence

We will make our prayers to the spirits of the land there, the animals, plants and minerals and for future generations. The winter is the element air – and we give thanks for the breath of life.
I will be going out to Carson next Friday morning, and if anyone can go with me to help prepare the lodge for this prayer, let me know. Our Store will be closed for Ceremony next Saturday.
Many prayers for our sister community in England – Lynn Gosney and her lodge and family and the prayers and music she makes for the world. Our first lodge was put up by Lynn and members of her family. . I lost our court battle with big timber and the judge gave them an easement across our private land so they can clear cut the trees around us. For years we have made prayers for those trees and the clear waters of bear creek as Our trees give us clean air and water.

The North Gate

I believe in the sustainable harvesting that our ancestors did – take no more than what you need and nature will give back the bountiful harvest. On Winter Solstice, the death of the old and the birth and return of the light – the Christ and Oak King. Thanks to all who have supported us in what we love to do.. make prayers, bringing beauty and drums and singing the songs.!
As Preparation is 90% of Ceremony so I have been reflecting on what I need to let go of that no longer serves me – self defeating patterns. Our lodge is almost full, so let me know if you would like to participate. As always, we will share food after the Ceremony – if you plan to come let me know by email and I will send directions and protocol.
Many years ago at New Grange in Ireland, I heard the old story that on the light of the winter solstice, the spirits of things that have died in the past year go out on the light of the winter solstice – the ending of the old – the resentments and anger and the beginning of the new – the return of the light.
We will make our prayers to the spirits and ancestors of bear creek, the trees, animals, plants and minerals and for future generations. The winter is the element air – and we give thanks for the breath of life.
I will be going out to Carson next Friday morning, and if anyone can go with me to help prepare the lodge for this prayer, let me know. Our Store will be closed for Ceremony next Saturday.
Many prayers for our sister community in England – Lynn Gosney and her lodge and family and the prayers and music she makes for the world. Our first lodge was put up by Lynn and members of her family.
    I lost our court battle with big timber and the judge gave them an easement across our private land so they can clear cut the trees around us. For years we have made prayers for those trees and the clear waters of bear creek as Our trees give us clean air and water.
I believe in the sustainable harvesting that our ancestors did – take no more than what you need and nature will give back the bountiful harvest. On Winter Solstice, the death of the old and the birth and return of the light – the Christ and Oak King. Thanks to all who have supported us in what we love to do.. make prayers, bringing beauty and drums and singing the songs.!

Drum making in North Carolina and Washington

Drum making in North Carolina and Washington. 

Among the greatest joys I know is helping others create their first drum.  Making the drum is a great venue for teaching how the breath (air) is

The breath of Life

involved in movement.  How often do we move while holding our breath?  To become mindful of this cessation of breathing is the first step toward ease and grace.  Holding on creates many perverted bodies, minds and spirits, dis-eases as we spend time  guarding and armoring our wounds rather than feeling and healing them.  On the week

Play and Balance

Lynn and Lewis

One of my best teachers of presence and heart was a man I met several years ago.  I was a fairly good racquetball player, very able to focus in the present, but my fear would come in and sabotage victory.  He reminded me that playing with my whole heart was the true nature of play, like the children.  I was addicted to “winning”, so I would get way ahead and then give up.  My false pride hated that.  We went on to form a short lived partnership that together, we would revive the spirit of play in America.  He taught me the simple act of hitting the ball to each other rather than  away from.  He invited me to begin using my atrophied side to gain more balance.  My relationship with the man taught me the importance of suiting up and showing up.  I journeyed to Marin County, California every month to complete 500 hours of “teacher training”.  I completed that task and my life changed.  I saw the correlation of grace and ease and how much I distract myself in my victim consciousness.  At the time I smoked tobacco, and I was the only one in the class who used tobacco.  I carried my shame well as I have always seemed to argue for the right to kill myself.  Many say that when the student is ready, the teacher appears.  I went on to look deeply into my life in AA’s “searching and fearless inventory” step.  Image result for the beauty way imagesGranted, I focused on what wasn’t working rather than what my assets were.  My guide or “sponsor” reminded me about the “white wolf” –seeing the beauty inside.  My next major learning was two years of “walking around the wheel” a course that was offered by some Souix teachers about the importance of balance.  I learned to make my first drum there, and I was hooked like an unaware trout.  I began to slowly shift my addictive nature into drum making.  I had no “intention” for making drums other than the joy it brought me.  One of the questions I was asked  by the first teacher was:  What would you give your whole heart to? My vision of Heartspace is the answer to that question.  From the lower world comes the fire-bird, the eagle that arises out of the ashes.  Can I attune my vibrations to that of the fire, air, earth and water.  Each element as each season have a teaching, and my 20 acres was/is to be a model of what can be replicated, yet part of the teachings are that growth has to be organic or it won’t last.  So my shifting into a real and authentic luster has taken and takes practice, polish, time, space, patience and faith and trust.  We are led by our breath and give thanks for the breath of life – our inspiration. 

Summer Solstice Sweat Lodge

In the Celtic tradition the sweat lodge has four doors, and the door that we enter changes with the seasons. Image result for images of celtic sweat lodge The summer solstice, (the longest day) represents the time when there is plenty for all.  We will enter the South door.  The preparation for lodge involves a continuing personal inventory, searching inside for what behaviors we wish to release that are self defeating.  Perfectionism, The need to “be right” rather than be real signifies an inflated ego.  As we mature, our values shift and we begin to gain wisdom to the extent we do the inner work.  The gifts of the south direction include an appreciation for the arts and the higher forms of expression – theater, art and music that restores the soul.  In the south, we evolve sexual energy into noble passion, a passion for life and an appreciation of the finer things in life.  The Senecas believed that we go into the womb of the mother when we enter the lodge, to burn away all of the separating beliefs we pick up outside of the lodge.  Going into the lodge is to remember when we were in our mothers belly, hearing our mothers heartbeat and our owhttps://s-media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/736x/c6/2c/38/c62c38f4735a5e9ee38b72b269c32d89.jpgn heartbeat, two hearts beating as one. This is yin time – honoring the earth and the abundance our sacred earth provides.  The south is the zenith of the light, restoring our visions for the next seven generations.  On Saturday June 24th, we will light our fire at noon and enter the lodge around three.  If you are interested in being a part of this lodge, please contact me, as their is limited space.  I will send out the protocol to those who reserve a space along with directions to our bear creek property in Carson, WA.  patrick@cedarmtndrums.com