Significant Moments in my Creative ProcessBy Andrea on February 08, 2010 — Leave a comment
Excerpt from an article for the International Journal of Healing and Caring, January 2007
This brief article highlights some of the key moments in my life influencing the direction of my work with Raven Essences.
It is the summer of 1995…
and I hold a small box of flowers essences made from my garden. I am preparing to ship these to thirty practitioners to test them with their clients. Looking at the name on the box, Raven Essences, I remember my dwarf baby, Talulah Raven, born several years ago with only a heart in her chest and no lungs to breathe. She was my raven, my messenger between the worlds. This small box is one of my tributes to her memory and the dark and soulful journey that she took me on in her very brief life.
Two years later I have a dream…
I am in a dark green wooded area. Near a stream, two men and two women are seated at a square wooden table in an image of perfect symmetry. As I stand nearby, I hear them say, one after the other, “Precious is my garden, and my garden is me.”
The phrase, ‘Precious is my garden, and my garden is me’ becomes a mantra inviting me to delve into the mysteries of my garden and to see it as a mirror for I am made of the same stuff as the green leaves and the stone.
Returning to this dream over many years, I know it is a formula for my work with Nature, highlighting the dynamic balance between masculine and feminine and the fluid dance between my power and the forces of Nature.
Six years later…
I am dancing with a mask ornamented with stones, leaves, fish bones and feathers at a Body-Soul Intensive with Marion Woodman, the renowned Jungian analyst. The women with me are calling up the restless parts of our unconscious. It is nearing the end of our time and we are to name our masks and reveal ourselves by saying “I am….”
Moving under the spell of the mask, I hold my belly as though as I am in labour. “I am Gaia’s…” for by now I know my mask is an image of the earth. I try again. “I am Gaia’s…” The last word does not come easily though my arms still grip my belly as I writhe. “I can’t be Gaia’s belly,” I think.
Then the words pour out of me. “I am Gaia’s Bell!” The two women dancing with me burst into tears. With a deep inner certainty, I know I am destined to let Gaia’s voice sing again on this green earth.
It is several days after September 11th,
and I am wandering in my garden feeling grief-stricken and helpless. Though I am safely distant from the drama I am caught in the global convulsions, wondering what I can do. With the call to arms ringing everywhere, I calm myself and reach for nature’s wisdom.
“There is value in mobilizing the warrior,” I hear, “not as a reaction to fear, but as a response to love.” As I keep listening, gradually I begin to feel the land making a quiet yet specific gesture of offering. The sense of what I might do begins to shape within me.
Over the next days, I gather the last fall wildflowers as ingredients to make four essences honoring the way of the Peaceful Warrior. Standing our Ground, Calling Forth the Vital Life Force, Sounding the Blessing of Liberation , and the Messenger of Forgiveness now help people ground their visions, strengthen their relationships, and heal wounds from the past.
On a winter morning in 2006…
I am sitting in my warm bed with several bottles of essences and a notebook on my lap. I am on a semi-sabbatical from my client work, taking several months to communicate directly with Gaia, the spirit of the living earth.
By now I know the essences are subtle, alchemical healers but I want to listen directly to Gaia’s voice through them. I take a few drops of the Zinnia essence, one that supports our full creativity but I am using it now as a prism to hear what Mother Earth might say through this flower. Preparing myself to approach Her, I chant, letting my sound be a bridge to this magnificent entity. Poised to receive, I feel the familiar wave of otherness as Her presence starts the flow of words deep within my body:When all you taste is bitterness be still and let your grief dissolve into the ocean of my song. When you are weary from bearing great sadness let go into the gentle rocking within my numerous arms.
And the words stop.
Mesmerized, I pause in the afterglow of this message. Then remembering mere mortals must not linger with the Gods, I give silent thanks and step back to reclaim the separate bones of my life within the Great Earth Mother.