Hello everyone. I missed you this Thanksgiving but we can always talk about giving thanks.
I’ve been on a sabbatical of in-home healing the past three months, and missed posting. But I’m back, a little stronger and thinking differently than early September. Autoimmunity reached up and grabbed me with a resurgence of symptoms. I had to stop my usual activities and meditate and eat a little differently and meditate more. It helped me that the seasons were changing, gently but decisively here in South Carolina. This gave me the perfect chance to slow down as I was changing, too, go inside and get real with myself and my mind/body connection.
There is so much to learn and boundless insights to be had, but most importantly, I remembered I am not alone. When I stopped struggling and resisting this huge set back (or rather set forward,) I underwent a leap of faith that was necessary to slide out of the fear of life in continuous hurt, fear, and isolation. My symptoms were slowing me down and cutting me off from my usual activities, and even more hurtful, other people. Because I could not speak, see (double vision) or eat (three very social tools connect us with others,) I began believing this is it. This is the rest of my life and then I die.
The thing that kicked me out of that mind space was this; What am I here for? What is my purpose now that I’m no longer actively engaged in my old ones as a student, mom, teacher, or grandmother? Now that I am just a simple human being without control over her body or her days, who I am?
Pretty existential, huh? Not really, it was all tied in with that leap of faith I mentioned. One day, I humbly and authentically made that leap and I got it. My purpose was made clear to me. Part of my reason for being is that it is up to me to consciously accept the love showering down on me (not just me,) and stop running around looking for it. But that is a topic for another time. I’m still too much in the newness of this understanding to actually write about it… yet.
What I did want to say was as I was healing my favorite spot to sit was my back porch. And my favorite view was the trees that surrounded me. As my sight grew more jumbled, I used my other senses more and began to feel their free flowing energy outside, and eventually inside my body. Normally we all see the trees, but for those of us who have given in to the temptation and hugged a tree, then you’ve experienced the surging life force one tree brings to our earth.
For a moment, imagine we are like trees, spiritually, mentally and physically. Our bodies are like trunks, our legs and feet and toes, like the roots that burrow down into the soil and spread out for stability and grounding and connection with other trees. Our arms are like the limbs and branches of the tree (though we’re limited to two). Unlike the tree many of our sensory receptors are located in our head, but like the tree, which does not have one head or any central location of intelligence, we have skin. Skin and bark, as well as leaves and limbs and roots all have information receptors. A tree’s intelligence thrives in the exchange of information in every cell of its being, just like we humans, only we don’t think this about ourselves.
We think our intelligence resides in our heads and that our thought processes are who we are. In a way that is true, we are what we think, what we assume and believe is true. But we leave out a source of information we are unaware of, our unconscious mind. Our unconscious is attuned to the cell exchanges moment to moment and records everything we’ve seen, heard, smelled, touched, tasted, thought and experienced in life. Our unconscious mind knows everything about us, we only know what we are aware of: And only in that moment of awareness.
So how are trees spiritual? We are like all trees (all living beings) when we sit still and watch, smell and listen to them. They are, like that Judy Collins song says, “leaning out for love.” Trees stand still yet every moment of every day they turn toward the sun for life-giving sunlight, life’s energy, for love. They raise their limbs and stretch their roots to catch the rains. In the fall, the winds help them shed their leaves and in the spring, carry their seeds to new ground. Trees remain rooted their whole lifetime, and appear to be still, though inside their sap is flowing and outside they grow toward light and water. They’re rooted, and can not run from kitchen to den to bedroom in search of their i phone. They stay still, quiet and receive. They receive love in the forms of light, water and information. They accept God’s love and simply are. The difference between us humans and trees is that perhaps they can not know all this about themselves. Do trees have self-awareness? I don’t know, but we do.
People have the gift of self-awareness and if we can just remember to slow down, sit still and open our hearts to receive God’s love which is present all around, (we can feel it when we attune, like an antennae on a radio, our bodies and minds to their frequency) we can recognize the joy love brings. With awareness, we can be grateful for the moment and give thanks to the trees for reminding us.
Thank you trees for the gift you are to us, and for showing me stillness and acceptance of love. Thank You.
Have you had a spiritual experience in the company of trees? How did that experience affect your symptoms? Your thinking? Please let us know below. Thank you!