Saturday, June 21, 2008

Part of Us Has Moved

As of a couple of days ago, I created a new blog called Hamida the Herbalist, which can be found at . It was time to do it. Soon I will be creating a separate blog for astrology. That way, those who want those specific topics won't have to wade through the rest of it. To make the transition sweeter, I'd like to offer sweets. An offering of chocolate. Take the test and see.

You are Milk Chocolate

A total dreamer, you spend most of your time with your head in the clouds.

You often think of the future, and you are always working toward your ideal life.

Also nostalgic, you rarely forget a meaningful moment... even those from long ago.

I'm am totally loving this blog stuff!

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

It's that Mercury Retrograde Thing Again

After the previous posting, I realized that I used an expression "dying before death" without sufficient explanation. I assumed (and you know what that means) that it was "self-evident". Sorry. Of course, as with all spiritual teachings, there are a number of ways to explain it. The way I understand it is this: that it is much like the Hindu and Buddhist ideas of non-attachment. Be "in the world, but not of it." Participate in life to the full extent, but know that there is more to life than what you perceive with your five senses. Do your duty, but do not be attached to the outcome (Bhagavad Gita)
Carlos Casteneda's Don Juan said to see Death as an advisor. Live as if you have all the time in the world with the knowledge that you could die any moment. If you knew you only had six months to live, what would you change about your current life? Sometimes our outer circumstances may be impossible to change, but we can always change our attitude about them.
In other words, be unattached to the things of this world, learn to let go (eventually we have to let go of everything, even our bodies), and come to know the spiritual realm while still in this world through connection with God, The One, The Source, Unity or whatever you call it.
And as Sponge Bob would say "Good luck with that!"

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Acceptance: Transmuting Loss to Gain

Haven't posted for awhile because I was focusing on getting ready for All Things Herbal, an herb fair and sale benefitting the Herb Exchange, in Sebastopol. Made three new products. Bottled, wrapped and sealed for days. Made clever new labels and informational sheets. Made handouts for my astrology business. Then woke up with the worst lower back pain I've had in years. Could hardly move. Was not able to go because I knew I was incapable of unloading the car and setting up my canopy and tables, or lugging all the boxes of product. Oh, was I disappointed! Hopefully those who showed up as a result of the 100 emails I sent, were at least happy with the rest of the event.
But then I realized that this disappointment was an opportunity to practice acceptance. Acceptance of what is. One of the most powerful teachings of Sufism is one referred to as "dying before death". While its meaning may be self-evident, its practice is both difficult and rewarding. In this instance, it was a letting-go of "my plan", and submitting to the reality that I could not walk, let alone "lift that bale". Although on a much smaller scale and hopefully short-lived, my temporary disability reminded me that many people every day all over the world, are faced with major changes in their lives due to sudden illness or injury. Death itself often comes suddenly and with no concern for what people may have hoped to do on a particular day.
My disappointment was followed by guilt, shame, and self-judgement that went something like this: "If you had done.... if you had not done..... you always xxxx things up..... why can't you get your xxxx together", etc. I listened for a couple minutes then realized that this was not constructive. With Saturn conjunct my Ascendant right now, self-criticism is highly available. I called a friend who had invited me to her grand-daughter's birthday earlier in the week and told her that since I was not able to do the herb fair afterall, could I come to the party.
So I went and had a delightful time. It was an interesting group of people, mostly adults since Maya is only 1 year old. She lived her first year with her paternal grand-parents in Tunisia and is becoming a tri-lingual child. Throughout the day, we spoke 5 languages (I love this) and the complete tree of Abraham was represented (I love this too).
We all got along although we sometimes did not share eachother's beliefs or opinions. And we said "why can't the world be like this?"
So a day that started out as a loss, turned out to be a gain. All because of a change in attitude. A turning point where grace allowed me to reframe my thinking.