Sept 22, 2004

...and a Happy Thanksgiving it is!  (Mabon, second harvest, is our time of Thanksgiving)  During this time in old agricultural times, the first harvest from the tended fields was pretty much packed away (although more would continue to come in until Halloween) and so sustenance through the coming winter was assured and that was truly something for which to give thanks.  The supplemental harvest of wild berries, nuts and apples and knowing that was coming gave reason for a joyful celebration.  Mabon was a time for giving thanks for what we have been given this harvest year and the wonderful "unknown" wild things that were to come.  Second harvest continues on until Halloween (Samhain to us) and after that, anything remaining in the fields and forests was considered to be unusable and wouldn't be touched.  It belonged to the land, not to us.  November 1st began the fallow where we learn to let go of expectations and predispositions and allow the Universe to take its hand in things while we turn inward for the dark of the year.  It's an introspective and soul-searching time that is to be valued, not feared.

The dark of the year is a scary prospect to people who depend on external distractions and busy-ness to keep us from focusing on the voices within and the dark corners of our lives.  If we use this time of year to clean the closets, so to speak, it allows us to emerge cleansed and bright into the upcoming light of the year. 

I think that's why there are so many suicides this time of year.  I've head of four in the past two weeks.  As we move into the dark of the year, many people move into the dark of the spirit.  Harvest is also a time of intense evaluation.  What do I have?  What do I not have?  What do I need to get through the coming (cold) months (of winter when there is no crop in the field) and can I bear to go into the treacherous cold without it?  Do I have enough in the larder (so to speak) to carry me through?  Some aren't ready for the introspection and internal dialog that is coming in the darker months.  Self-evaluation can be terrifying and forbidding. We all have dark sides that must be dealt with in order to continue on as healthy and balanced people.  Acceptance and understanding of our dark self is an important process that is amplified in the dark of the year and that only comes with a detailed, objective study of who and what we are in this world, inside and out. 

Even though our human lives are no longer set up to focus around the agricultural year, we still have an internal clock that is set by the ridges worn into time by our ancestors so many years before we were ever conceived.   As humans, we are cyclic and although our eyes tell us that life is no longer all about working in the fields and hunting in the forests for our survival, our internal collective knowledge keeps us on that path.  We "hunt and gather" from the grocery store and forage for paychecks  in the wild.  We still feel a kinship to the security and intimacy of ritual and tradition.  We still seek a kinship with the powers that are bigger and more complex than we are.  No matter what our spiritual path might be, we still seek out a kinship and communication with the Divine so that They might live with us in our hearts and walk with us through our days.  Whether it's a fairy tale that makes us feel less alone and gives meaning and purpose to our existence or really is part of an intricate and sacred plan woven into history and time and extending forward beyond what we can see from our human perspective is irrelevant.  The fact is that it makes us feel better.  It lifts us up to our highest and best self and creates a joy and peace that is unmatched.  When we tune into the flow of nature and encounter what we perceive God to be and welcome that into our life, it gives us a whole new perspective on the world and onto ourselves.  Maintaining a hardwired connection to that God-presence is the goal and once that is achieved, no matter what our external situation might be, we experience a sense of heaven on earth.  The natural cycles of things are one of the ways to make that connection, particularly if you believe that nature is all about God and humans merged into a vibrant dance of life and experiences.

Mabon is our time to celebrate that connection and the harvests that come into our lives to sustain and please us.  (I doubt it's any accident that most food tastes good, telling me that we are meant to enjoy our lives and the means that allow that life to continue.  The opiate sensors and receptors in our brains that must be stimulated with pleasurable experiences in order for us to thrive are proof positive that as humans, joy is one of our requirements for life.    We are actually programmed to constantly seek out our greatest good, our finest joy and our ultimate bliss.  We need hugs and love and fun and excitement in our life on a biological basis!  How cool is that!

I have so much for which to give thanks this year.  If I started listing things, even just the highlights, we'd be here all day.  I am joyful.  I am thankful.  One of those wonderful blessings in my life are you folks who share this world with me.  When I meet with my group on Saturday (because after all, we have to forage and hunt and gather through the week), we will have traditional thanksgiving turkey after a riverside ritual celebrating the flow of life through all things and welcoming the coming second harvest while giving thanks for the bounty of the first harvest.  Each of you will be in my heart and I will give thanks that you are with me, sharing life and connecting for a few minutes now and then, using the amazing gift of technology to weave a web of friendship that defies geography and complex schedules.  Without technology, we'd never know one another and our lives would only touch in the widest of ripples that we might never recognize.  Now, because we were blessed to be born into this moment in time, we can know one another and be further blessed with the friendships we might not otherwise experience.


Life is good.

As Sage used to say... "Feelin' the love."

Yesterday was a qualified success.  I didn't get the kids' room done or the clothes put away, but I got validation on an inner urging.  On Saturday, I'd been at Walmart looking at their portable shampooers, which are like dustbusters that shampoo.  I was going to have to lay out around $40 on one, when I got the nudge (which almost shoved me into the shelf) to try my Hoover Spinmatic (or whatever, not sure what it's called) shampooer for the carpets on the upholstery and stairs.  ("But I don't have the attachment hose!"  "But it didn't work last time!"  *whine*whine*)  *nudge*

*sigh*  No new toy today.

Tried yesterday and very quickly found the hose and brush attachment in the closet under the stairs.  Tried to set it up and again, nothing.  Decided to just clean the shampooer and do the carpets when WHAT to my WONDERING eyes should appear but a set of instructions on the inside of the reservoir.  That showed me the connection I was missing, I set it up and the thing worked like a pro.  It was better on the upholstery than on the carpets!  (thank God).  It took me an hour and a half to do the couch and although it didn't get everything, the couch is now ivory again instead of taupe.  ;o)  It looks so much better.  I also got the stairs done with the same attachment and went on to the carpets.  Today, I have to move on to the things I didn't get done yesterday, plus get Dylan started on his new week of school work.  Our bean plant died, so I don't have to have him draw it and chart its progress any more.  Silly school should know not to have kids plant during harvest.  Pfft.

Have to give Delena's room another once over and once the kids' room and clothes are finished, I'll have a clean house!  WHOOOO HOOOO!  Of course, that will last for a solid ten minutes or so, but hey!  It's something at least.  Sadly, there won't be any witnesses (who are over 18 and who therefore, give a shit at all).  I'd take pictures, but Eric would accuse me of doctoring them. 

If I don't get started now, I won't even make the 10 minute margin!  :)

Take care, all,