The Butterfly in the Heart

butterflyinheart

All of our healing comes back to the heart. The heart chakra is the seat of our soul, and our connection to the divine energies of the universe. When we have a healthy heart chakra, we radiate pure, unconditional love, and open ourselves to the return of this love.

When we experience pain, betrayal and fear, especially at an early age when we are more vulnerable, we can learn to protect ourselves by closing off the heart chakra. When we are given love with conditions, or suffer abuse, we adopt the belief that we are unworthy of unconditional love, or that this pure, untethered love is obtainable. Instead, we look at love as something with limits, building walls of protection around our own inner source of love so that we do not run out of its light, so that this light is not stolen from us, and we are not hurt by loving.

This system of belief is not always easy to change. It takes security, trust and faith. When we begin to live with a healthy, open heart chakra, we need to erase the fear of vulnerability, and understand with faith that the energy we send out to the universe comes back to us in multiplied form. When we realize that we are worthy of unconditional love, we begin to see that love is limitless. From this place of heart-centered pure love, we attract the energy of joy, abundance, compassion and the gift of unconditional love from others. We become magnets for these energies, and are no longer an energetic match for fear, conditional love and betrayal. This translates to the people we attract to us.

I associate the energy of the butterfly with the heart chakra. Often, during healing sessions, I will see butterflies emerging from the heart chakras of my clients as they shift into self-acceptance and let go of their conditioned fears.The energy of the butterfly is pure joy and freedom. It is beauty without limits. The butterfly teaches us that we have within us the power to transform ourselves, to shed the weight of density and grow wings.

A Walk to School

DSCF3332I spent the early part of the morning, after I’d loaded the kids off to school, stressed. I could feel the tension rising in my chest as I searched my home office for the packet of photographs my birthfather had sent me months ago, then, when I found them, how to scan the ones I wanted from my printer onto the computer.

While I was looking for the photographs, I shifted through piles of debris, hardly giving these stored mementos a second glance in my panic to find the photos. Instead, there were the barely perceptible pauses as I catalogued the contents for later review. As my mind wandered to many places, I kept hearing the voice inside telling me to get outside. Downstairs the banana bread I had made for my son’s class was sitting on the counter cooling, and the voice urged, Why don’t you walk it to school?

As I showered, having given up on my efforts to scan the recovered photographs, the voice kept coming back. I thought about the time it would take (the school is only about a mile from my house), and whether the dogs would protest. But, as I sliced and wrapped the bread, popping a heal in my mouth to make sure it would pass the taste bud test of 7 and 8 year olds, I thought, What the heck, I’m going to walk.

The dogs barely noticed, as I wafted by them with my bag of bread and quickly opened and closed the front door. They knew, as I did, they’d still get their daily allotment of 3 walks/day. It’s a rare day when they don’t.

There’s something about stepping from the enclosure of a building into the open air that has an immediate effect of lifting one’s mood. Well, at least for me. Especially on a fine, spring day. Instantly, I felt lighter and the tension began pouring out of my cells. I had, I realized, through the urging of Spirit, given myself a gift.

Even though I stayed on the roadside, I was surrounded by bird-song and that showy abundance of chlorophyl one finds only in spring and summer. There’s a reason why so many people go into the cathedral of nature to find themselves, and to heal. Green is the color that vibrates from the healthy heart, it’s the aura of a healer, and it’s the expression of life in nature. Unless one is metaphorically asleep, you cannot help but feel the uplifting effects of being in the presence of  plants and trees.

As I walked to the school, I inhaled the color green with each breath, and took in the gifts Nature had to offer me. On the way home, I asked Spirit for a plastic bag (an easy request, as they’re often tangled in the undergrowth of trees), and found one minutes later caught in the hands of a small shrub. The roadside was full of discarded debris, and I began piling soda and beer cans, disposable coffee cups, cigarette packages and butts, and all manner of plastic inside my too small bag.

If I hadn’t taken the extra time to walk to my son’s school on this beautiful day, I would not have seen the black bird fly across my path. I would not have taken that deep breath to absorb the gift of its energy, and in turn, hear its message of reassurance, You will find your way. If I had driven my car, I would not have paused, while retrieving bits of styrofoam, to seen the pair of orioles  spreading sunshine through the pines. And, I would not have paused beside the fire pond to watch the light dance on water.

Rebirth

Some people believe that the year 2012 is the end of the world. When the Mayan calendar ends in December, so will our world. A belief seeped in fear. But, the foundation holds truth. Spiritual leaders throughout our world speak also of this year as an ending. The ending though, is a shedding of old beliefs that drag us down; a shattering of the structure of our individual and societal foundations, so that we may rebuild and evolve at a faster, higher vibration. It includes every being on this planet, as well as the planet itself.

This upheaval is palpable. You have only to open your door, or your newspaper, to see it. You have only to open your heart.

Over the past year, in particular, I have begun to explore the seat of my spirit, my heart chakra. When I first stepped into my heart chakra through meditation I tried to design this sacred place with my mind. I’m a writer. I wanted color, texture, characters. I thought it must be green, like the energy it harbors, verdant with the elements of the natural world. It was fun to play with…but it wasn’t real.

Today, when I stepped into my heart chakra while listening to Jennifer McClean’s 1/12/12 Prayer Circle replay, http://www.mcleanmasterworks.com, I allowed my inner sight to open to my surroundings, resisting the impulse to paint my room. I saw red. I saw flesh. I saw a womb. This, I realized, was the image that comes to me first when I visit. My sacred place of birth and rebirth. My heart as a womb. It was not grand, but it was perfect, for me.

Later today I received an email from a dear friend of mine; a fellow writer/poet; an artist. She wrote to me about waking from a dream where I appeared with her and another friend of ours. It matters only to her that I was there and our other friend, as most often, characters in dreams are facets of ourselves. In my friend’s dream she drove to my home, which appeared to her as an old, red brick building in need of some TLC on the outside. When she walked inside though, wearing her bright red sweater, my friend saw warmth and texture, plants and more colors, including red. She saw me holding an infant I had just bathed.

You may notice, as I am observing with myself, that your thoughts and life events will eerily spread and seek connection, through no conscious effort of your own this year. Two days ago I was sitting at a pub in New London, NH, eating lunch with a dear friend, another fellow writer, the other woman in my friend’s dream. We spoke about the upheavals in our lives, we spoke about seeking roots to ground us back to the earth so that we could make sense of, and work through our chaos, and we spoke of the pains of our past. Red. Root chakra issues that had blocked our other energy centers.

My lunch companion was reopening her heart chakra, and in doing so, giving balance to the more masculine energies that had ruled her adult life. This was her fortress of protection, wrapped around her heart, from feeling unloved and unwanted as a child. For weeks she had been crying, releasing the dam and allowing the female side to find space. She was learning out how to love without fear. I couldn’t help but think of the 10 of Cups card I had drawn for her  a year ago in December, as well as the World card. Through her pain, I could see her destination of becoming whole. I was witnessing a part of her rebirth.

A year ago I had also done a tarot spread for my friend who shared her dream from last night. Her destination card had been Judgement. Literally, in the Rider/Waite tarot deck,  the card of awakening to new life. Rebirth. The baby, recently bathed in her dream. Self-babtism. Only she knows how she will evolve.

Later, during my meditation with the prayer circle, after I explored my heart chakra, I took a journey through my own body. I looked for the blocks, those shadows that shun the light. The shadows are always on my right, including my brain.  I played with the possibility of light and watched what it would bring for me. A landscape opened before me, textured by gentle hills. I stood tall upon one, ready to climb the next. I was so tall, I almost doubted the vision. I almost laughed. How could I be this giant who had conquered fear? Still I let it play out, and watched as I crested the next hill and took flight. My body found its form, naked, it became light. From my back I sprouted wings.