Hamani & Following What Lights You Up

(Excerpt from Flowering Within)

Every spring thousands of sakura trees (cherry blossom trees) in parts of Japan break out in bloom. The landscape comes alive as a blanket of soft pink and white spreads across its vast expanses. When the wind washes through the trees, the delicate sakura petals shake and fall quickly to the ground, some filling rivers and turning them pink. For more than a thousand years Japanese culture has honored this enchanting picture of beauty through the practice of hamaniflower viewing or flower watching – with people coming from all over to witness  and celebrate the serene unfolding of spring through these ancient forests of sakura trees.

Hold the image of these blooming sakura trees in your mind’s eye for a moment and imagine something. Imagine that when you are inspired, when you’re attuned to your inner essence and when you tap into the flow of grace, your heart flowers with the same kind of wild splendor and spreads a special kind of magic across the landscapes of your life. You light up in your center and your inner petals open to let your spirit shine. Your authentic Self steps forward and when she does, can you come to her with eyes full of wonder and honor her inner flowering through your own practice of hamani in the same way that flower viewers in Japan bear witness to the sakura blossoms?

The Flowering Within Paperback is now available on Amazon. Click here…

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I Don’t Want to be Seen

I feel safer hiding in the shadows, speaking in soft whispers and treading my footsteps lightly so as not to disturb…

At times I’ve felt that it’s a form of kindness – me not wanting to shake up things around me in case I end up disrupting, disrespecting or hurting anyone. Maybe that’s true sometimes, but I recognise that mostly it’s because I don’t want to be seen.

I feel uncomfortable drawing attention to myself. So, I hide behind protective shields. I find reasons and excuses to keep me in the safe confines of my comfort zone.

Writing has been one of my shields, giving me a safe space to channel my voice into words on paper so that I don’t have to speak too loudly. Yet, at the same time, my writing has a way of bringing me closer to the unavoidable truth about myself. Through my writing, be it in journals, blogs or books, I explore and curate experiences, lessons and insights I’ve gathered along my path to healing. Writing life holds a mirror to me, one that keeps me honest with myself. It helps me get to the root of things and uncover internal blocks that need to be surrendered to a place of healing. It expands my awareness of self and how I interact with the world around me.

Awareness is a good thing, though it can leave me feeling frustrated with myself, especially when underlying blocks like this – me not wanting to be seen – rise to the surface of my consciousness. I become frustrated because I’ve spent many years doing the work, releasing my blocks or limiting beliefs and learning to let go of the past. Sometimes it feels as though just when I think I’ve worked through the bulk of my baggage, something new comes to the surface.

I’ve had to remind myself to be careful not to give in to self-judgement and to remember that it’s a continuous process. I’ve also had to remember to meet myself with gentleness, embrace my vulnerabilities and accept that what I’ve uncovered is simply another layer of fear that I may not have fully understood before, but am now ready to turn over to love and surrender to light. Self-judgement is the easy route and even more so because it’s my default setting. Acceptance and making peace with the space that I’m in is most often the harder task, but as I mention in Flowering Within (which will soon be on amazon as a paperback and kindle version), this approach has also been my gateway back to inner harmony and grace.

Right now, I’m acutely aware of how not wanting to be seen is preventing me from showing up fully in certain areas of my life and in my work too. While I feel good about the fact that I’ve emerged from my shell, shed shackles and I’ve learnt to put myself out there in what feels to me like a very big way in recent years, I also see that a large part of me is still resisting out of fear. I’m allowing that part of myself to be held in love. I know where she comes from. I understand that she is the part of me who feels attention means attracting negative reinforcement. She is the part of me who doesn’t know how to love herself because all she sees is lack, brokenness or unworthiness and she is afraid that others will see it too. I know that to heal and transform this part of myself, I need to accept and love her whole-heartedly.

I cannot grow in that way that I want to, nor can I see my spirit expand and soar in the manner that it’s meant to if I continue with this limiting pattern. It’s clear now more than ever, that the resultant resistance only stifles my growth which inevitably leads me to stagnation. So, the most nurturing thing I can do for myself is to make room for an inner shift by showing up in the moment and inviting both my intuition and Goddess to guide me as I take steps to accept, surrender and heal. I am ready to let go of this fear-base narrative and the belief that I need to play small or hide to be safe, which is why I’m asking myself many questions right now, questions that I hope will help create space for a shift.

Like, where am I still hiding? How can I be more open and show up without fear? And how do I release limiting stories about ‘being seen’ in order to place the power back in the hands my wise, wild and mysterious force within instead?

I trust in the intuitive wisdom that rises through this process to support me as I transform my poisons into positive new stories that stimulate my growth, well-being and support my highest good too.

What kinds of blocks are you working through right now? What is helping you to move through your blocks and transform old limiting narratives into new empowering ones? How are you creating space for inner healing?  

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My Meditation Mantra this week: I own my space when I step into my personal power. I no longer dim my light but choose instead to shine brighter than ever before. I give myself permission to be seen. 

The Gentle Dance of Grass Medicine

When the moon wanes, her fading light makes the cold night seem older and wilder somehow and I begin to feel the winter more deeply.

Lately, I’ve been finding comfort in the whispers of the grasses. I watch them in the fields on my walks. I see them dance with the winter breeze, speaking a breathy language of their own. Their voices sound like freedom, their rhythmic sway feels like grace. They calm my heart.

It’s difficult not to sense the ancient essence of what they once were when I walk and listen and feel beyond the surface. I wonder if sometimes at night these remnants of the once vast grasslands/savannahs that were here long before we built this city over them look up at the stars and dream. Do they dream of a time when lion walked among them and when herds of springbok grazed the grass stubble at their feet?

When I breathe their wild stories in then I feel my spirit set free a little more, a part of me swaying slowly side to side right there in their midst. A holy hush brushes up against me and I can’t imagine ever going back to a time when life was too busy to notice – this. Too busy to be still, to hear the wild Earth speak truth or to see the glimpses of sacredness that she mirrors to me.

I gathered a few pieces of grass for a little wild word mantra inspiration, to see what soul medicine they had to offer. I’ve been doing this more often lately. It’s a practise I’m trying to make more of a habit than an occasion exercise (and perhaps I’ll share of this more of the blog going forward too) because right now the mantras help me create a positive focus to centre on each week.

Here Are The Words That Came: Light, Flow, Dance, Whispers and Gentle.

My Wild Word Mantra this Week: I ignite my inner light when I surrender to the flow of life. I am willing to dance to the gentle rhythms of sacredness as I honour my heart’s whispers.

grass wild word mantra