From our inbox to you from: DailyOm Madisyn Taylor on “seeing the bigger picture”


Seeing The Bigger Picture


BY MADISYN TAYLOR

 

We have created imaginary boundaries, sectioning ourselves into countries and states, forgetting that in reality we are all living together.

Seeing an image of the planet Earth taken from space inspires awe in many of us, since we can clearly see the connectedness of all of us who live upon this planet. We have created imaginary boundaries, sectioning ourselves into countries and states, forgetting that in reality we are all living together, breathing the same air, drinking from the same water, eating food grown from the same earth. We share everything on this planet, whether we are conscious of it or not, with other people, and those people are our brothers and sisters. Keeping a photograph or painting of the planet Earth in a prominent place in our homes can be a positive way to remember our interconnectedness.

Meditating on the fact that any sense of separation we have from one another is truly an illusion, we will naturally begin to make more conscious choices in our daily lives. The simple act of preparing food, or determining how to dispose of our refuse, can be done with the consciousness that whatever we do will affect all our brothers and sisters, no matter how far away they live, as well as the planet herself. When we foster this kind of awareness in ourselves out of a feeling of awe, it becomes easier to be conscious than to fall back into old habits of thinking of ourselves as separate.

When we contemplate the earth in her wholeness, we attune ourselves to the truth of the bigger picture, which is the Earth, and all of us, every one of us, living on her body. We are connected to one another in the most intimate way, because we literally share our living space. As more people become aware of the reality of our inter-dependency, things will shift in a positive direction, and much of the discord that we see now will give way to a more cooperative, loving conscious. This is happening already, so as our consciousness grows, we can join with the many other minds working to live in the spirit of togetherness.

From our inbox to you from: Patti Wigington & Making Magic in Your Garden



Making Magic in Your Garden
By Patti Wigington
 

The garden can be one of the most magical places in your life. As spring approaches, let’s look at how to plan, create, and grow your magical garden, as well as ways to create specialty gardens, herb plots, and more!

Garden Folklore and Magic

The very act of planting, of beginning new life from seed, is a ritual and a magical act in itself. To cultivate something in the black soil, see it sprout and then bloom, is to watch a magical working unfold before our very eyes. The plant cycle is intrinsically tied to so many earth-based belief systems that it should come as no surprise that the magic of the garden is one well worth looking into.

Plant a Magical Moon Garden

 

A lot of people don’t realize you can grow plants and flowers that bloom at night. Cultivating a moon garden is a great way to get in touch with nature, and it provides a beautiful and fragrant backdrop for your moonlight rituals in the summer. If you plant these lovelies close to your house, you can open the windows and take advantage of their aromas as you sleep.

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As spring arrives, our gardens begin to bud and eventually bloom. For hundreds of years, the plants that we grow have been used in magic. Flowers in particular are often connected with a variety of magical uses. Now that spring is here, keep an eye out for some of these flowers around you, and consider the different magical applications they might have. 

Magical Flower Correspondences

 

SGC: From our inbox to you; “Creating Space in the Body by Madisyn Taylor”


Creating Space in the Body
by Madisyn Taylor

As we move deeper into meditation, the state of our mind expands thus allowing us to create more space within our body.

Our minds and bodies are interconnected, and the condition of one affects the condition of the other. This is why meditation is such a powerful tool for healing the body, as powerful as physical therapies. When our minds are cluttered with thoughts, information, and plans, our bodies respond by trying to take action. When the body has a clear directive from the mind, it knows what to do, but a cluttered, unfocused mind creates a confused, tense body. Our muscles tighten up, our breath shortens, and we find ourselves feeling constricted without necessarily knowing why.

When we sit down to meditate, we let our bodies know that it is okay to be still and rest. This is a clear directive from the mind, and the body knows exactly how to respond. Thus, at the very beginning, we have created a sense of clarity for the body and the mind. As we move deeper into meditation, the state of our mind reveals itself, and we have the opportunity to consciously decide to settle it. A meditation teacher pointed out that if you put a cow in a small pen, she acts up and pushes against the boundaries, whereas if you provide her with a large, open space, she will peacefully graze in one spot. In the same way, our thoughts settle down peacefully if we provide them with enough space, and our bodies follow suit.

When we settle down to examine and experience our consciousness, we discover that there are no hard, definable edges. It is a vast, open space in which our thoughts can come and go without making waves, as long as we let them by neither attaching to them nor repressing them. As we see our thoughts come and go, we begin to breathe deeper and more easily, finding that our body is more open to the breath as it relaxes along with the mind. In this way, the space we recognize through meditation creates space in our bodies, allowing for a feeling of lightness and rightness with the world.

SGC: From our inbox to you; “Celebrating the Sabbat, March 20 By Patti Wigington”


 

 

 

Celebrating the Sabbat, March 20
By Patti Wigington

Spring has finally arrived! March has roared in like a lion, and if we’re really lucky, it will roll out like a lamb. Meanwhile, on or around March 20th, we have Ostara to celebrate. It’s the time of the vernal equinox if you live in the Northern Hemisphere, and it’s a true marker that Spring has come.            There are many different ways you can celebrate this Sabbat, depending on your tradition.

May your Sabbat be a magical one!

Rituals to Celebrate the Spring Equinox

Depending on your particular tradition, there are many different ways you can celebrate Ostara, but typically it is observed as a time to mark the coming of Spring and the fertility of the land. By watching agricultural changes — such as the ground becoming warmer, and the emergence of plants from the ground — you’ll know exactly how you should welcome the season. Here are a few rituals you may want to think about trying — and remember, any of them can be adapted for either a solitary practitioner or a small group, with just a little planning ahead.

Setting up your Ostara Altar: Try these tips to set up your altar for the Spring Equinox.
Ostara Altar Photo Gallery: Be sure to check out some of our readers’ photos of their Ostara altars – and find some inspiration!
Ostara Ritual for Solitaries: This simple ritual is designed with the solo practitioner in mind.
The Lesser Banishing Ritual of the Chocolate Rabbit: This fairly ridiculous Ostara rite for kids is silly fun for the whole family.
Ostara Rebirthing Ritual: Celebrate the season of rebirth and renewal with this rite.
Ostara Labyrinth Meditation: This meditation ritual will help you with some problem solving during the Ostara season.
Earth Meditation: As the earth begins to warm back up, use this meditation to help get yourself grounded.
Celebrating Ostara with Kids: Got little Pagans? Here are some great ways to include them in your Ostara celebrations!

Ostara Customs and Traditions
Interested in learning about some of the traditions behind the celebrations of March? Learn why St. Patrick hated snakes, and why the Easter bunny brings eggs for us to eat!
Ostara History: The vernal equinox has a long magical history. Here’s how it’s been celebrated through time.
Deities of Ostara: Meet some of the gods and goddesses associated with the spring equinox.
Spring Equinox Celebrations Around the World: Pagans aren’t the only ones celebrating this time of year – here’s what the rest of the world is doing!
Who was Eostre?: Was Eostre really an ancient goddess of spring?
Matronalia, March 1: The Romans celebrated an early version of Mother’s Day at the beginning of March.
Easter Eggs: Pagan or Not?: Are Easter Eggs secretly Pagan?
Can You Really Balance an Egg on the Equinox? Have you ever heard about balancing an egg on the equinox? Let’s look at the science behind the rumor.
Beware the Ides of March!: The Ides of March were an unlucky day for a certain Roman emperor.
St. Patrick and the Snakes: There’s a lot of speculation on whether or not the snakes were a metaphor for Pagans – did St. Patrick really drive them out of Ireland?
Pagans and Lent: Should Pagans give things up for Lent, just because their Christian friends and family members are?

Ostara Crafts & Recipes

As Ostara rolls in, you can decorate your home (and keep your kids entertained) with a number of easy craft projects. Start celebrating a bit early with a St. Patrick’s Day Snake Wreath or a basket of naturally-dyed eggs. If you’re thinking about planning a feast, be sure to check out these recipe ideas!

DailyOm on “Taking Counsel in a Circle” By Madisyn Taylor


Taking Counsel in a Circle

by Madisyn TaylorImage result for free glitter graphics healing circle

The use of a talking stick during counsel assures every voice is heard fully without interruption.

When we sit in a circle together and share our thoughts and feelings, we participate in a powerful, unifying practice whose origins stem from the very beginning of human time. All early cultures practiced some form of this ritual, which gives each individual in the group a voice, and at the same time reveals the one voice, and the ultimate unity, of the group. This profound and simple way of talking and listening has experienced a modern rebirth in counseling, social work, and spirituality.

Most circles benefit from the presence of a leader who opens the circle by calling in angels, spirit guides, and ancestors – beings of light who will be present with those taking counsel. The leader may announce a theme for the circle, or one may simply evolve from the unstructured expressions of each participant. The circle continues for as long as feels right, at which point the leader may summarize what has been said, perhaps leading everyone in a moment of silence before the circle disbands. One of the most powerful components of this work is the talking stick, which can be any object – a crystal, a flower, or a candle – that is passed around the circle from person to person. The person holding the object speaks until he has fully expressed his feelings, and no one else interjects, interrupts, or even responds until they are holding the stick. This enables people who have a hard time speaking out to express long-buried feelings and points of view. This is powerful because in a community it is often what is not said or acknowledged that causes the most pain and suffering.

The circle, which contains no hard edges or angles, is the ideal container for these difficult truths. As we hear the many perspectives the subject at hand inspires, we begin to see that our individual truth is just one of many. Our own hard edges begin to soften as the circle flows from one person to the next, and each wave of words cleanses us of one more layer of mental and emotional armor, freeing us to be closer to the people around us. Try using counsel during your next family meeting, school class, or any setting where you feel a centering communication method is needed.

DailyOm on Co-operation by Madisyn Taylor


Cooperation

by Madisyn Taylor

Image result for free glitter graphics shaking hands

Cooperation is allowed to flow more easily when we let go of the necessity to be right all the time.
Cooperation seems simple: working together toward a common goal for the benefit of all involved. But amazingly it can be quite challenging, even when we have so many successful examples all around us. Human society is based upon the concept of cooperation, but finding a balance to ensure the good of all members of society is difficult. In nature, symbiotic relationships form between unlikely allies: a bee and a flower, a bird and a rhinoceros, small fish and sharks. Yet nature also shows us instances of constant competition in which only the strongest survive. Given the choice, it seems most people would choose the more peaceful path of cooperation. Intellectually, we know that together we can create something greater than what one could do alone, but cooperation still seems to be one of the greatest challenges people face. We don’t always agree on how goals can be reached. Our priorities may be different, or our methods, but in the end, cooperation offers the best chance for success.So how can we learn to cooperate with each other? We can gain greater perspective by trying to understand one another’s point of view, perhaps even putting ourselves in their place. We can search for commonalities as well as differences, and look for the good in different approaches. There is always more than one way of doing things, and some approaches are better suited for certain situations than others. All this is easier when we let go of the necessity to be right and to call others wrong. More important, we must believe that there is a solution that benefits all involved, not just one side.

The results of cooperation can be as simple as effortlessly getting everyone in your household to their appointments to large-scale social shifts to changing minds and hearts or policies that affect the future.

From our inbox to you from; DailyOm Madisyn Taylor on… Mountain Meditation


SGC Admin: Mountains truly are a place where you can go and feel at one with nature… hubby and I, while not being seasoned mountain hikers by any means, have hiked up a few in our day… the hike up and sometimes the hike down again can be a challenge, but the reward at the top is always priceless.. Even on cloudy days, the peace and quiet of the mountain top can refresh and renew you … 🙂

Mountain Meditation

by Madisyn Taylor

 

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Mirror Lake: Lake Placid (town of) N.Y. State: Photo Greta McKenzie 2016

 

Meditating near a mountain can be both powerful and grounding in a most profound way.

Throughout history, humankind has stood in awe of mountains. The strength and sturdiness evident in the rocky crags and smooth slopes of peaks around the globe have from time immemorial inspired creativity and kindled courage.

Mountains have been venerated by many cultures, which worshipped great summits as gods and sacred beings. In their looming presence, humanity has seen power, steadfastness, and resolve. Yet you needn’t live near a mountain to tap into this vast energy of commanding grandeur. Conversely, since mountains are as unique in form as human beings, your locale may exist under the unwavering gaze of a small mountain without your knowing it. As you practice mountain meditation, the power that lurks in the heart of all mountains will flow into you while their essential beauty reminds you that you, too, are a creature of the earth.

If there are mountains in your area, plan to spend some time enjoying the peaceful embrace of Mother Nature, which can be a potent meditation aid. Likewise, grasping a rock or stone in your hand will enable you to easily tap into earth energy. If you are prevented by circumstance from visiting a mountain, however, begin by visualizing yourself at the base of a towering summit.

Holding a rock can be helpful to tune into mountain energy. You may find yourself picturing a steep and majestic snowcapped peak or a lush, tree-covered mass that rises gently from the earth. Sit or imagine yourself sitting at the mountain’s base and spend a few minutes simply coexisting with it. When you feel tranquil, express your intention to commune with your mountain and ask to receive its energy. Project your consciousness onto the mountain’s peak, and look down upon the flatlands over which it stands guard. Send light to the flora and fauna that call the mountain home. You may discover that you ! feel wonderfully immense and unshakable as you delve deeper into the meditation.

Finally, ask the mountain to serve as a guide and give it your sincerest gratitude. If you have literally visited a plateau or summit, pass time with the mountain by camping, hiking, or picnicking upon it. Or, if your journey has been a spiritual one, use your imagination to survey the sights, sounds, and scents of your mountain. As your explorations progress, you will become ever more grounded, growing gradually into your personal power. When you are finished meditating with mountain energy, give thanks to this strong and powerful energy for sharing time with you.