The Secret Life of a Spiritual Warrior – Part I

Visual from arose before dawn and moved quietly through the house. It was dark outside and the rain was pelt against the windows. She did the dishes while the coffee dripped through the machine. With hot mug in hand, she sat cross-legged on the couch. After a few sips of coffee, she settled into position; legs crossed, hands on knees, back straight, jaw relaxed.

She let her mind drop down into the earth, visualized the red energy at the centre of the earth, and allowed it to fill her body with each breath. The voice of her teacher resonated in her head, “Don’t pull the energy; be receptive to it; be the receptive container; allow the energy to fill you.” With each inhalation, her body filled with the transformative red energy of the mother earth. Each exhalation washed away her fears, her anxiety, her grief and despair.

In her mind, she stood over her own body, which was stretched out on the floor, with a crystal wand in her hand. Her healing self used the crystal wand to cleanse each of her seven chakras. She spun the crystal over her own pelvis and visualized pure red light spinning there. Using the wand, she picked up any dark energy and released it to the ground.  She repeated this for each chakra; visualizing orange light above her belly, yellow above her solar plexus, green above her heart, blue above her throat, violet above her third eye, and white at the top of her head.

She had not done this for a very long time. She had been trained well; she knew how to heal her self and others, but she seldom took the time to use her skills. A modern woman living in a speedy age; working on a computer several hours a day; multi-tasking all of the time. It was hard to find the time….It was harder to quieten the mind. But more importantly, it was hard believe in the power of the old teachings.

It was easier to believe in the power when she was part of a circle; when she participated in healings while seated in a circle of women chanting and drumming together.  She had been the recipient of one of these healings and knew the power they had to change one’s life.  But faith is hard to hold on to in a material world; harder to hold when removed from a spiritual community.  And it had been decades since she felt part of such a community.

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The Hammock

The Hammock, July 2014-KPThe hammock 

hangs in the dark corner of the yard

under the Catalpa tree


I surrender

draping myself on its white woven ropes

legs curled and arms splayed

staring toward the sky.

I give myself

to the lazy rocking motion

on this hot summer day

lulled into my senses.

Out of my head

lost in heart-shaped leaves

that glow emerald green

with captured sunlight.

I close my eyes

listen to the chir of an insect

the tinkling of water in the pond

the rustling of leaves in the wind.

I am here

out of my head and out of my mind

in my body and in the moment

quiet, still and peaceful.

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Summer Solstice

Sunset on Water - 2014 - KP

Four women gather at dusk

two mothers and four daughters 

to mark the longest day. 

They sit upon the earth  

in a circle formed with candles

 enveloped in darkness.

They pass from hand to hand

a bowl with cedar, sage and sweet grass 

and bathe in the fragrant smoke. 

They call upon the powers

the four elements, the eight directions

and the nine sacred gifts.

They offer up their prayers

for the People,  for the Planet

from deep within their souls.

They put energy into their prayers

with voices woven into harmonies

and intentions fueled by love.

Four women gather at dusk

Two mothers and four daughters

to mark the longest day.

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Morning Worship

Goldfish in Water Garden, June 2014-KPShe walks in bare feet

through dew-laced grass

naked feet on moist earth

and sighs with her whole body.

She watches shiny orange bodies

in green brown water

cluster around the bubbling water

lips kissing the water’s surface.

She watches as flying gold bodies

flit in to steal small black seeds

from tubular man-made devices

boldness born of ceaseless hunger.

She sighs into the morning stillness

inhales the sweet smell of whiteflowers

that perch on long delicate stems

under the cypresstree.

She quiets her mind

opens her senses

fills her heart with emerald light

and begins another day.

Goldfinch at feeder, June 2014-KP

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A Little Wild Life for the Soul

Phlox by Spencer Creek - June 2014-KPFor me, nature has always been my temple; the place I turn to, to quiet my mind and centre my self.  When I am having a bad day, or feeling a little off-centre, a walk in a wild place can stop the busy chatter in my head, slow my heart rate, take me down me into my body, and lift my spirits.

Electrical Line Transecting Spencer Creek-June 2014-KPFor the last few years, my favourite wild place has been the Spencer Creek Trail; a small trail that runs from the Canadian Tire to the McMaster University parking lot.  The trail runs beside the creek, through a marsh that is bounded by the escarpment on the north side and a busy roadway on the south side.  The creek flows into the Hamilton Harbour which has been home to two steel plants for the last 6 to 7 decades.  Despite all of those human encroachments, this little trail is full of wild life.

Beaver in Spencer Creek, June 2014-KPWhen I walked there tonight: there were Kingfishers flying along the creek; Yellow Warblers and Song Sparrows were calling from the bushes; and a Robin was feeding on the trail.  A male Deer with antlers coated in fuzz was feeding in the marshland. I caught sight of a Raccoon climbing a fallen tree.   And I spotted a Beaver chewing on a branch in the creek and then followed it as it swam downstream in the tea-brown water.

Spencer Creek, June 2014-KPWhere this trail was grey and brown and barren just two months ago, tonight it was bursting with fresh green foilage. The trees, bushes and vines are full of leaves; the marsh is full of grasses and reeds; the trail is lined with wild flowers.  The breeze carried the fragrance of sweet grass and wild flowers.  I felt every cell in my body waking; all my senses coming to life.    I moved along the path feeling alert and alive; smiling and joyful. This little patch of wilderness in the midst of a big, industrial town.  What a gift for the soul.

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