Reflections From the Edge
Happy Spring everyone!
Many people are talking about this month's astrological influences. These astrological aspects, a grand cross made up of four planets in cardinal signs that oppose and square each other, has intensified the need for social reform and personal transformation. These challenging aspects, however, are supported and softened by the simultaneous occurrence of a grand trine of planets in water signs. The grand trine is always a favorable aspect, but the unique combo of planets involved, offer water's flow and unstoppable determination to reach its destination.
Together these aspects create the possibility for an easy flow into new forms and next chapters. It is important to expect this. They have ushered in a new wave of universal consciousness, a birth contraction that is pushing all of us into our next developmental stages. The ultimate potential is that humanity births on mass, a more mature and soulful human being, expanded, less defended and shut down, capable of great compassion, wisdom, love, generosity and joy. This new soul "full" human being is equally awake in mind and heart, body and spirit and attuned to masculine and feminine energies alike.
Just as the individual moves through developmental stages, the infant turns into the toddler, the toddler into the child, the child into the adolescent, the adolescent into the adult, so too humanity as a whole organism is compelled to move through developmental stages from spiritual immaturity into a new spiritual awakeness. Siddharta Buddha put it well. He taught that we transform from one substance into another, like milk transforms from cream to butter to cheese.
As we transform individually (and collectively) we lose attraction to things and situations that deaden our energies. What was once tolerable, has now become intolerable. What was once simmering under the surface is now heating up and can no longer be denied or suppressed. Addictions and trauma can now be successfully faced. Gifts that have been hidden must now be nurtured and shared. New muscles are calling to be mastered. Freedom to be authentic is essential. Humanity is in the throws of labor pains. There is no more postponing; the next chapter is here.
You could say these astrological aspects have ushered in a new period of collective cracking open, a shared spiritual emergency of a magnitude and pitch that we as a whole have not faced before. We can see it in continued cultural upheaval around the globe as people stand up to social illness, speaking out against depravity in all its forms, environmental destruction, corporate and governmental corruption, tyranny, extreme poverty, cultural suppression and annihilation, sexism, racism, intolerance created by hate doctrines.
But, you can also see its reflection in the emergence of soulful forms, new creative solutions that are surfacing around climate crisis and economic instability. Solutions like the minimalism movement that is growing in meaning and application for thousands everyday.
We can see this cracking open also in new levels of generosity and compassion. The emerging gift culture is an example of this. Everywhere people are selflessly and generously supporting each other in actualizing visions and dreams. Also more women are stepping into leadership and pointing the way to a compassionate, balanced and sustainable future while more and more men are generously empowering them to share their much needed wisdom.
A new wave of social entrepreneurs have cropped up. Social and environmental justice is becoming everyone's business. More people are feeling the call to lead grass roots efforts to support cultures and communities that are being destroyed and to preserve wildlife and natural resources from the devastation of corporate greed. Technological innovations abound and support these inspired people to make a real impact.
People are making it their responsibility to instantly pass important information through mobile devices and the many forms of social media that are now so readily available. The World Wide Web is helping put important information about NGOs and non-profits who are making a difference into the hands and hearts of the masses. It is empowering all of us to make new, more informed choices, to use our voices and wallets to create the world we want to see. And where the people lead, in time governments and corporations will follow.
This cracking open is also playing out in each of our personal lives as opportunity disguised as loss. Spiritual emergencies come in many forms. The loss of a loved one, the break up of a relationship, financial ruin, a dream that falls a part, serious illness, relocating, children going off to college, facing addiction and early trauma that is surfacing to be cleared; all of these signal the end of one chapter and the beginning of another.
Spiritual emergencies thrust each individual and those who love and depend on them into some form of identity crisis. Cracking open requires surrendering to a period of deep restructuring on every level of one's being. The good news is that in periods of spiritual emergency there is potential for great growth and lasting transformation.They bring, if navigated consciously, great rewards and fulfillment.
I loved Liz Gilbert's line in her book, "Eat, Pray Love", 'Ruin is the road to transformation." When what you have known as solid ground feels like shifting sands or even rushing water, then you are being called to give birth to your next chapter, to a more expanded identity. This is how the great turning takes place, one break down to break through at a time.
Personal de-structuring and crisis open defenses so we are able to perceive the soul's promptings to move toward wholeness and integration. During times of loss and ruin we can find new meaning and new direction. We reclaim disowned gifts and selves which have been frozen in time by trauma and neglect. Ruin creates the crack through which disowned qualities re-emerge to be reclaimed and reintegrated.
When we are cracking open we can shift life course, transform beliefs and patterns, heal old wounds that hold us back, receive guidance an epiphany, open to new levels of love, soften our hearts to ourselves and others, reconnect to the beauty of life all around us.
In short spiritual emergencies open doorways that lead into essential identity, wisdom and sacred knowledge. When we open to the clarity and compassion of the universal self or soul, we begin to see what's real. Periods of cracking open remind us to get on with our loving and to follow our bliss. We are here for such a short time really. And each lifetime has a powerful and precious agenda.
Use your cracking open to find your unique path forward. Allow yourself to follow the opportunity that this period represents. Be the spiritual warrior. Flow with the contraction the cracking open brings. Embrace your sorrow and pain, your fear and distrust. Embrace it and go beyond it to the universal self, the soul. The soul will lead you to breakthrough, fulfillment, grace and love.
Let the current wave open you and set your feet upon new ground. You will find a renewed sense of purpose and passion. You will fill with the love because you are love. Open to it now. Its everywhere. Breathe it in. Rise and fall with the cracking open until you know that you have arrived somewhere new. Then pass it on through presence, active listening, a smile, a hug, an expression of gratitude, some act of kindness to yourself or another.
Feel the call of your soul. Express your soul work in a new way. Build your dreams. Support others in their soul's work. Laugh hard when you're tickled. Expand with happiness!! Dance like your life depends on it. Sing your heart's song. Sense the divine clues, the guidance that is everywhere. Divest from doubts. Challenge your projections and expectations. Trust your heart's wisdom. And create a relationship to stillness. It will heal you.
May we all find the courage to return step by step to the sacred path that calls us to leave duality, paradigms of us and them, win and lose, domination and subordination into the deeply humbling and ever inspiring awareness of love's interconnected and interdependent web of existence. Greta
January 2012 Reflections
Happy New Year Everyone!
In 2011 I watched with tears of awe and admiration as a new generation of change makers peacefully gathered across the globe to protest injustices. No historian or social analyst could have predicted this new generation's impact on the course of humanity. Relying on social media, acting in many cases as a single organism without scripts or leaders, following their guts and hearts this generation of revolutionaries has miraculously either brought down or fatally exposed, legacies of corruption and abuse worldwide.
Their brave actions created the space necessary for the roots of the new paradigm (what in evolutionary consciousness circles is referred to as "the emergent") to grow and evolve. The intrepid spirit of the Arab Spring inspired and fueled the Occupy Movement in the US and Europe. Again and again this generation of change makers has put their physical and emotional comfort, their social standing, their lives on the line so that a better world can begin, now. I am moved and inspired by their courage to follow their discontent, their outrage, their vision and show up on the streets, in squares and on campuses across the globe to say, ENOUGH.
I have been equally moved by the recognition women are beginning to receive for their brilliant, non-violent leadership, implementing strategies across continents to stop the machines of war that stem from tribalism and result in cultures of violence, rape, exploitation and genocide. Three women received the Nobel Peace Prize in 2011 for their remarkable work promoting peaceful revolution. Abagail Disney (Walt Disney's daughter) released her powerful series,Women War and Peace, on PBS in October 2011. She and her colleagues document the stories of courageous women around the globe who are making a difference amidst the challenge of war, violence and discrimination.
I also want to take a moment to recognize the older generation of change makers, evolutionary thinkers and perceivers, seekers, actors and life revolutionaries. You have been working behind the scenes for decades, stretching your own consciousness, teaching others what you have learned, leaving your comfort zone again and again in search of answers and next steps. You've dared to drop out in search of more truth. You are the time release capsules, universally attuned beings who at the right moment documented your findings, taught, modeled, meditated, offered new perspectives, trusted your hearts, revolted, spoke out, created, co-created and teased change out of the masses. You have been walking the talk, laying the ground work for this new generation of cultural creatives for a very long time.
Cultural Creatives which include spiritual pioneers, seekers, environmental activists, visionaries and courageous non-violent change makers have opened the way for truth, reconnection and healing. Since 1999 this group has grown in the US alone, from an estimated 50 million to 100 million, 33% of the population. The secrecy surrounding the corruption of political and corporate cultures that sanction social and environmental exploitation, has been hacked. The old story and its obscenely myopic rhetoric and methodology has been increasingly rendered obsolete. There is a new empowerment, a new sense of interdependence that is showing up on every level of human society as personal and social currency. People are feeling, that we, the people, can create a different world.
So what follows the great waves of breakthrough of 2011?
There is still widespread denial about the pressing dangers of climate change. Industrialized nations are responsible for the increase in C02 and the warming trend that is resulting in devastating droughts, extreme weather patterns and rising sea levels that threaten to swallow whole cities. But policy makers act as though cut backs can wait. The suffering of people and wildlife in regions like the horn of Africa should be awakening our collective empathy and a sense of urgent resoluteness.
These cultures have not contributed to the climate crisis yet they suffer most. It is critical that we apply the new wave of empowerment that surfaced across the globe in 2011 and take the steps necessary to reduce our dependency on fossil fuel and further decrease C02 emissions, now. Just this week President Obama stood up to the fossil fuel industry by refusing to allow the TransCanada's Keystone, XL pipeline to be laid where it threatens the Ogallala Aquifer. A small and fragile victory but a stand none the less.
The end of one stage in human development as the natural response to the evolutionary exigency of the next? It is up to each of us to commit anew to living more consciously. We are the ones who are midwifing this great turning. So, what is it that will usher in more peace, more ethical decision making, more awareness of our interdependency, more sustainability, more fairness, more creative problem solving, more genuine collaboration, more love?
My answer to this question is, empathy. Empathy is the heart's sweetest occupation. It is what makes the fireman rush to the top floor of a burning house in search of survivors. It is what makes a teacher put in extra time with a student, a child stand by an unpopular classmate and strangers risk their lives in non-violent protest so that future generations will have a healthy planet or so that exploited people they will never meet will have a chance to be free and self governing.
Empathy is present when a parent reaches out for emotional healing work so that they can change inter-generational patterns and parent in a more loving, conscious and soul preserving way. It is what makes people stand up for animals, birds and forests so that fragile eco-systems essential to the health and balance of the living Earth will survive. Empathy is what makes a politician fight for legislation that honors human dignity even though it may mean they will not be re-elected.
The human heart is remarkable. Unlike the mind which tends to be more black and white in its assessments, the heart can hold human dichotomy and stay faithful to potential even in the face of grave imperfections. The heart empathizes with the challenges others face. It knows how to grieve atrocities and loss so that an individual or nation, can move forward into forgiveness. The heart allows us to leave the tribal "us and them" paradigm dominating human culture for eons and enter into an expanded sense of belonging and interdependence. The heart knows how to help. The heart knows how to love.
Here are some simple tools for developing and furthering empathy in your life:
Practice meditation 15 minutes to an hour every day or whenever possible. This expands the heart naturally and creates emotional resilience.
When you have even the faintest sense you have wronged someone, apologize. This challenges perfectionism and shame, furthers self acceptance and self awareness and creates forgiveness in others.
Observe who and what you judge. Most often what you judge in others comes from what you judge in yourself. Work to replace the judgmental thought with acceptance and understanding.
Give yourself the gift of healing work. Take advantage of the many profound healing forms on Earth at this time. Join with others who are also seeking to be free from perfectionism, self condemnation, self doubt and self hate.
Practice forgiveness. Start with yourself and let it expand to include others. Self forgiveness makes the process of forgiving others easier and more fruitful.
Practice tolerance. The general adage I subscribe to is, "If people could do better, they would." We are all Divine awareness on a journey through time and space. There are key developmental stages everyone passes through, each with its own task and timing. People evolve faster without judgment. Believe in your power as a loving model.
Observe where you tend to move into cultural hierarchy and exclusion. Where do you become tribal and arrogant? Expand the ego's need to feel superior with a simple prayer like, "may everyone everywhere reach their highest potential." This helps create a frequency of oneness which tunes the ego up an octave and allows your best to emerge.
Engage in random acts of kindness like letting people into traffic, helping someone who is carrying heavy bags, paying for a stranger's toll, coffee, groceries. Reach out to a friend or neighbor who is house bound, grieving, overwhelmed with parenting, etc. maybe there is some small thing you can do to help. Donate money, time and energy to a group that is walking the talk for the change you want to see.
Remember, acts of kindness, not only lift up others and spread the spirit of empathy, but make you feel alive and aglow.
Here's to 2012! May we all feel our worth in every conceivable way and may this new level of self-worth beget in each of us an increased sense of power to impact the script of the new story that is unfolding at this time on Earth. And may we willingly undergo our next steps so that we become blissful instruments of unanticipated, outrageously beautiful expressions of divine love and innovation! Imagine! Greta Bro
September 2011 Reflections
We have just passed through the 10th anniversary of 9/11 so I wanted to address fear. In my work with people I'm frequently asked to talk about the fastest way to create individual and collective breakthrough. My response usually boils down to the following: resist fear, meaning, be careful about what you project out and emotionally expect from life, embrace the life classroom you're in, no matter how difficult, work to forgive yourself and others and live your life connected to what you love most.
The first, resist fear, requires that each of us invest in trusting life, even when history and statistics say otherwise. We are by nature co-creators of life, everything we believe consciously or unconsciously is reflected in the world around us. As conscious co-creators fear only gets in the way. This doesn't mean that we shouldn't heed inner warning, but so often fear is about being manipulated by a trumped up, infectious stream of thought that feeds on our human vulnerability and trauma, and then dumps us into a collective cauldron that amplifies our negative projections.
The key is to cultivate inner spaciousness through meditation and other stillness practices that allows one to observe and sense the early signs of collective entanglement and manipulation without being triggered. One can learn to activate the frequency of the Self and fill with a trusting, neutral and open consciousness that allows the body to stay calm as one assesses the perceived threat. When fear does set in, prepare a list of things you can do, i.e., spiritual reading, chanting, meditation, to quiet yourself and then reopen to the frequencies of love.
For example, learning about the devastating affects of global warming can cause one to project out the worse case scenarios for earth and humanity and by so doing, as co-creators, strengthen the very outcome one fears most. Instead, be educated about what's happening, simplify, ween yourself off of toxic dependencies and inspire others to wake up to the importance of empowered participation. At the same time, practice an open positivity that makes room for the possibility of collective breakthrough, spiritual accelerations and innovations, including scientific advancements that make our dependency on fossil fuel and other toxins and pollutants obsolete.
Most importantly, fully participate in being the answer to global warming and cultural injustice by examining and processing the conditions within your own being that help perpetuate earth apartheid, widespread destruction and suffering. Seek to understand where you are split and work to bring empathy, forgiveness and connection to these places inside yourself.
Continue to explore where you have been soul murdered and carry unprocessed trauma which creates compartmentalization and disassociation, leaving you susceptible to fear, despair and manipulation by outside forces. Disconnection from soul or essence creates a gnawing hunger, a feeling of emptiness and despair that leads to addiction, materialism, abundant consumer waste, compulsive activity and an accelerated lifestyle with no time to enter into stillness and reflection; states that are essential to receiving guidance in the form of intuitive flashes, body wisdom, heightened awareness and spiritual insight.
Which leads me to the importance of co-creating a soul filled life brimming with passion and creativity. We are not simply here as pawns in some divine game. We are here to express our deepest natures and in so doing, find great fulfillment. And, yes there will be life classrooms that are profoundly challenging as we untangle our lives from collective old world madness. But until we deeply receive what we love and then set our sites on it, we are rudderless and asleep, living out the vision and patterns of previous generations.
In May, my friend Nanna Svendson attended the 3rd Nobel Laureate on Global Sustainability, and she reported that all present agreed that the primary shift in consciousness that needed to occur was recognizing the interdependence of life. But, they also stressed the importance of individuals living their passion and then collaborating with others on sustainable solutions from this empowered place.
Setting your sites on an authentic course where you are moving toward what it is you need and love most, is crucial. If everyone asked more of their life and believed that they deserved what they desired most, the world would be a different place. Imagine if we all believed that we could have what we "really" needed: love, respect, community, collaboration, joy, beauty, resources, a sense of full connection to spirit, to the earth, to each other, frequent experiences of the miraculous, a feeling of one's inherent worth, trust in life and unlimited creative power. Heaven on Earth, right? The Infinite wants this for us and conspires to help all of us find the doorways to shifts in consciousness that will lead us there.
But we must invest in this notion in order to awaken to the truth about who we are as midwives and co-creators of a new wholeness within ourselves, within humanity and within the earth. We are birthing it right now, together. Underneath the fear of failure, the emptiness, the sense of not being enough, the need for approval, there is a fire burning. This fire is your desire to be whole, to be authentic and loved for who you are, as you walk your sacred path in harmony with life.
This fire can be snuffed out by inherited cultural beliefs that confront us with statistics designed to keep us investing in old world norms.The trick is to identify trumped up fear with its pull toward limiting familial and cultural beliefs and choose instead to invest in becoming increasingly conscious of who you are as an unlimited Self. Fear limits us, while the Self expands us.
Find the fire within and you will find the inner vision, freedom and power necessary to recreate and re-build your personal story and together our collective story, lovingly, effectively, cooperatively, poignantly and blissfully in accord with the living Earth. This is the great consciousness shift to which we are all called. Some will feel the call internally, directly, others will experience the shift through a new level of love, wisdom and forgiveness in those around them. Look for the invitation. The doorways are everywhere! Greta Bro
May 2011 Reflections
Yesterday, I received many thoughtful emails about the assassination of Usama Bin Laden. Reading these emails I realized just how many Americans are feeling great dismay mixed with disbelief that our government believes revenge is what we the people overwhelmingly want.
Are we not the nation that watched Martin Luther King and a dedicated group of civil rights protestors and freedom riders peacefully stare down the forces of apartheid and successfully dissolve its legitamacy? Not only did these brave people transform the US culture of apartheid but they were faced with the task of forgiving a country that had brutally repressed African Americans for centuries.
If we had absorbed what we witnessed in the civil rights era the US would have attempted to sit down with those we currently consider terrorist and tried to listen, without reaction or defense to their grievances? If we had done this we would have learned volumes about our collective shadow. We might have come to understand that much of the world sees us as terrorists and this information had we responded to it thoughtfully might have caused us to pause and reflect. This dialogue may have saved thousands of innocent lives around the world?
And what of the Arab Spring, the organic and powerful movement toward freedom of expression that is flowering throughout the middle east? Thoughtful dialogue between Arabs and the western world, collaborative think tanks on the roots of terrorism, would have been so much more fruitful to encouraging this flowering then more killing?
I see Usama Bin Laden's assassination along with the killing of Gadaffi's young son and grandchildren during a NATO air raid on Sunday as a call to accelerate my own growth, to look inside and seek the ways I contribute to and perpetuate the cultures of hate in this country and abroad. To me this means bringing more love, more patience, more compassion, more forgiveness into my inner community in an effort to allow the frequency of love to dwell in me more deeply and flow through me like a great balm into all my relationships with friends, family, colleagues, neighbors, animals, trees, waters, the living Earth herself.
It is in this way, when we are able to challenge the voice of inherited cultural narrowness that fills us with intolerance, hate, judgment and inevitably shame and choose instead to love, we allow the frequencies of love into the realm of our human dichotomy and great alchemy occurs. Love activates new levels of moral decency within us.
Then and only then do we stop projecting the face of evil on other nations. When we do the work, individually and collectively, of honestly taking stock of the atrocities that we personally and as a society have committed and we allow ourselves to enter into the waters of self forgiveness, we begin to grow a mighty compassion that allows us to look at the unconscious transgressions of others with a new lens. When we do this work we begin to proliferate a field of mutual respect, openness, forgiveness, tolerance, reconciliation, collaboration, compassion and peace in all that we do.
In the very wise words of Martin Luther King:
"..we must not seek to defeat or humiliate the enemy but to win his friendship and understanding. At times we are able to humiliate our worst enemy. Inevitably, his weak moments come and we are able to thrust in his side the spear of defeat. But this we must not do. Every word and deed must contribute to an understanding with the enemy and release those vast reservoirs of goodwill which have been blocked by impenetrable walls of hate.
"Let us move now from the practical how to the theoretical why: Why should we love our enemies? The first reason is fairly obvious. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that. Hate multiplies hate, violence multiplies violence, and toughness multiplies toughness in a descending spiral of destruction.....The chain reaction of evil-hate begetting hate, wars producing more wars-must be broken, or we shall be plunged into the dark abyss of annihilation."
"Another reason why we must love our enemies is that hate scars the soul and distorts the personality. Mindful that hate is an evil and dangerous force, we too often think of what it does to the person hated. This is understandable...But there is another side which we must never overlook. Hate is just as injurious to the person who hates. Like an unchecked cancer, hate corrodes the personality and eats away its vital unity. Hate destroys a man's sense of values and his objectivity. It causes him to describe the beautiful as ugly and the ugly as beautiful, and to confuse the true with the false and the false with the true."
"...love is the only force capable of transforming an enemy into a friend. We never get rid of an enemy by meeting hate with hate; we get rid of an enemy by getting rid of enmity. By its very nature, hate destroys and tears down; by its very nature, love creates and builds up. Love transforms with redemptive power.
May we all choose to nurture love. Greta Bro
Spring Reflections 2011
Things are accelerating. There is a great evolutionary wave swelling through humanity, stimulating awareness and a longing for truth, creating a clash between old and new world paradigms. We see its reflection in the powerful changes going on in the middle east, what many are now calling the Arab Spring. Supported by social media like facebook and twitter, peaceful protesters toppled the government in Tunisia, and the power of this rippled through the people of Egypt, and now other nations like Bahrain, Yemen and Libya.
Then the world witnessed the earthquakes and tsunamis that devastated northeastern Japan bringing great heartache and ongoing uncertainty throughout the region. But amidst the chaos we have also seen humanity at its best. The Japanese people have exhibited unparalleled courage, cooperation, generosity and compassion in the face of unimaginable adversity. They are a model for us all.
The wave is creating unrest in the US too. More people are asking why is the US always at war? Why does torture still exist in this country under the Obama administration? Why was Bradley Manning, for example, being kept naked in solitary confinement for reporting war crimes while those who sanctioned the hideous crimes go free without reprimand? Why is Obama pushing for nuclear power plants after years of moratorium on increasing this deadly energy source? How is this possible after what we have seen in Japan and now in our own south with the threat of extreme weather increasing worldwide.
People are also asking, how can public sector unions be trashed so easily while corporations remain unchallenged? How can the right continue their outrageous manipulation of the tea party, fiercely promoting the de-regulation of federal government on the one hand while lobbying for federal regulations that control women's reproductive rights on the other? Many of us are shocked by the legislation currently in front of congress that would leave our most vulnerable citizens unprotected. We ask, where is human decency?
For the seeker an additional question surfaces.
How does this dance between old paradigm and new paradigm play out in my own life? Where am I stuck and unable to follow inner wisdom that calls me to evolve as a loving, expressive, reverent, generous and co-creative human being? How do I consciously align with this universal call to transformation and rise in a new way to meet the challenges of my own spiritual evolution?
I believe we are all being asked to leap. We can participate in the wave through confronting the "inner dictator", the part of us that clings to old habits, fears losing control, is shut down and disconnected from life. We do this so that a truer and wiser identity, sourced in divine wisdom, can surface more fully in our lives. We usher in the field of the New Earth, each time we consciously choose to step deeper into alignment with this divine essence and broadcast clariity, wisdom and compassion through our thoughts, words, actions and relationships. This is the Great Work.
I find it helpful to see this evolutionary wave as a birth contraction ushered forth from the source of life, to press humanity forward to a tipping point. Ultimately it is the Earth that is leaping and we as part of her must respond. The new world is awakening in our hearts, minds and bodies as a vision of humanity as a compassionate, sustainable, generous and collaborative force within life.
Many of us are experiencing a deeply co-creative impulse toward community and cooperative innovation. None of us, no matter how shut down, fearful, in denial and despairing, will be able to successfully resist this wave. It is organic and as irresistible as child birth. It cannot be stopped.
The trick is to ride the wave. It invites us to consciously and willingly participate in the shift into what many indegenous people throughout the world call, the Age of Heart. The field of the Age of Heart, insites us to change, asks that we leave comfort zones and risk living from values that support and promote relatedness, innosense, empathy, sustainability and compassionate action in all functions and realms of life.
It begins with listening inside for that small voice.
To consciously participate in the great turning the seeker must first learn to engage the receptive and intuitive power of the feminine principle. We are each living out our own story of Job. It is through the inner feminine that we learn to trust the stripping, the waiting, the gestation and the quickening that enable us to continue to progress. In time as we increasingly grasp what is unfolding through us, the promise of this era, we become strongholds for the field of the New Earth. We become instruments of change.
As we integrate the feminine principle the heart begins to lead. We long to reconnect to essence, to the living earth, to each other. This is when new ethics begin to emerge worldwide. With each inner and outer breakthrough there is a chain reaction of insight, wisdom and loving action. This ripples out through our immediate communities into the greater collective of human consciousness. Everything is effected and all life forms, conspire to help each other wake up. Such is the nature of life.
As we get better and better at listening to that small voice, activations and quickenings occur. Sometimes the small voice comes as a knowing or a felt sense and sometimes through a gnawing dissatisfaction, a deep rooted sense of urgency, a longing for wholeness and healing. This is the voice of wisdom, your own divine essence in collaboration with the field of the new world reaching through the density of survival fears, asking you to expand.
Perhaps that small voice asks you to stop watching so much TV? Or perhaps it asks you to stretch in relationship to others and speak up, share yourself in some way? Maybe it asks you to support your body more through changing your diet, cleansing, challenging addictions, daily meditation, deepening your yoga practice? It could be a call to service to some population within humanity or service to animals, the forests or the earth's waters? Maybe it is inspiring you to create a work of art, write a book, choreograph a dance piece or start a business.
Perhaps it asks you to be still, go deeper into your healing, to forgive yourself or forgive another. And just maybe it asks you to reach out to a neighbor with different political views or background and be a bridge of tolerance and understanding? The small voice always asks us to risk, to broaden beyond our comfort zones, to rebalance in some way so that we may discover the untapped reservoirs of greatness, innovation and compassion that live at our core.
Take a moment. What is your small voice asking of you right now? Listen as if this is the single most important thing that you can do for yourself and our world. Because, my friend...it is.
May wisdom prevail in all our hearts and minds, Greta
October 2010 Reflections
In this season of change, when change is so desperately needed, I want to say...try something. Movement creates flow and flow begets expansion and transformation. Listen inside for what stirs undetected, muffled by the noise of daily routine. Receive yourself in a new way.
Challenge your stagnation, your despair, your fear, your feelings of inadequacy, your doubts. Rock the boat. Find help to face what you must face. Become still. Become active. Embrace your discontent. Touch your heartache. Take on what you've been avoiding. Test your strength. Stop swallowing your voice and speak. Risk failing, you will recover if you do and you will respect yourself more for trying. Simplify. Drive less. Turn off the TV, cancel your cable. Give up coffee, wine, fatty food, meat, stoicism, doubts, self judgment, self neglect, perfectionism, being critical.
Forgive yourself. Forgive another. Let someone in. Make eye contact. Water someone with praise. Give those you love long hugs. Let them last for one whole minute. Drink them in. Tell them that you love them. Sing a song for someone. Write a story, a poem, an article. Breathe deeply, drink more water, chant, pray. Start a cleanse. Learn an instrument. Dance wildly with abandon. And if people roll their eyes don't stop. Smile at them and remind yourself of what they're missing. Give up fitting in. Belong to yourself first.
Slow down. Dwell in the space between things. Eat locally, organically. Support fair trade. Let your dollar speak. Donate part of your land to Wildlife Land Trust. Find out what green really means. Sit by a river. Hike this beautiful Earth. Lie down on her and listen to her melodies of bees and bears, crows and waterfalls. Let her in! She will heal you with her acceptance and re-connect you to every living thing.
Stretch. Meditate for half an hour frequently. Let the Infinite's tenderness fill you until you bloom with generosity, peace and service. Every resource in the universe is yours, truly it is your birth rite. Claim your gifts! Learn to live from essence. Follow that good idea that keeps coming back.
Let the numbing routine crash and burn. Let chaos heal you. Break free in small ways, in big ways. Be the crack that the light pours through. Be the change you long to see. Open to all that lives inside you as possibility. Stop postponing. Risk! Everything you need will rush to support you. Your Creator cannot refuse you. Walk, run, crawl to your next bold move. Practice radical trust. There is no time to waste. Leap!! Greta Bro
November 2009 Reflections
Celebrating the Dark and Light
Many cultures have created festivals around the Solstice to celebrate the return of light. But what if we also celebrated the voluptuous Dark? Recently while in Paris visiting friends and a niece, I awakened in the night to the guidance that "dark and light are inexorably one; they cannot be separated." This simple but profound insight grew into a deeper understanding of the nature of both Dark (yin/feminine) and Light (yang/masculine). The ancient symbol of yin-yang shows us that the core of darkness is light and that the core of light is darkness. They are dynamic forces through which life moves in and out of existence. They are ancient lovers who restore and re-balance each other.
The essential nature of Dark is Pure Being. At its core is the impulse towards stillness and oneness with the unfolding now. It is the fertile void, the source of all things. It holds within it infinite possibilities and the space and context within which life unfolds. The fertile Dark does not discriminate. It holds, embraces, nourishes and identifies with and connects all expressions of life. Intuition and a 'felt sense' or gnosis are what allow us to navigate the terrain of the Dark.The dark cycles and seasons restore us to balance. What is active becomes still and restores, and that which is latent gestates and emerges. When people are separated from the regenerative power or Pure Being the customs and institutions of that culture become stagnate, dogmatic and simplistic.
The essential nature of Light is Pure Awareness. It observes, seeks insight and understanding. It is also the active principle. Light creates movement and stimulates expression and flow. With Light comes choice and individuation. Light, Pure Awareness, stimulates chi, ignites insight and liberates the potential within the dark so that it may arise as new direction and new opportunity.Too much light though, and life moves at the speed of mind separated from the organic rhythms of life on Earth. We become antiseptic, afraid of our own emotions and cut off from our origins in the natural world. Pure Being pulls us back into connection with life.
When Light is not balanced by Dark it expresses itself as unrest, impulsive activity and addiction, alienated from the quite that would re-balance and stimulate awareness of new choices. Without the cycles of the dark we cannot successfully reflect on our impulses and so, we stay stuck in habitual patterns of thinking and doing.
We see this in the choice to escalate the war in Afghanistan. The US is habituated to war. With the insights that come with stillness and deep reflection we might have seen another path to ending terrorism. A path that engenders dialogue between nations and generates a course to halting the dislocation of Muslim people and the occupation of Muslim countries around the world. Entering into stillness our leaders would have seen that the US could have facilitated dialogue around the horror of occupation, instead of creating more occupation and more aggression. The great Nelson Mendela, once a terrorist, speaks of terrorism arising out of a deep state of despair and disenfranchisement. The occupied feel no other recourse.
Pure Being connects Pure Awareness to the greater context of oneness. Pure Awareness brings to consciousness the treasures latent within Pure Being. Each function is essential to the creation of life and everything alive expresses this dance of light and dark. When either of these primordial functions is suppressed the other will emerge through the core of the other as an impulse toward balance and renewal. We saw the movement toward Pure Being surface in the US and parts of Europe in the '70's as a fascination with eastern mysticism. People discovered Zen and Tibetan Buddhism and Hindu teachers were widely celebrated. Women's spirituality articulated itself with passion and purpose and the Black Madonna surfaced spontaneously in the dreams of men and women throughout the world
So let us meditate as we light our candles this Solstice, hannukah and Christmas to the power and the beauty of Light betrothed to Dark. Let us slow down and take in the blessing of the mysterium, new perspectives, inventions, sacred art, healing insights and solutions to our complex times are waiting for us there in the quiet. A poem for you.
Peace and Blessings, Greta Bro
In the cycle of early winter
When night yawns wide
And the membrane between worlds
Grows porous and thin
Kernels of inspiration
Release from holy sources and
Seek the voluptuous folds
Of fertile imagination
Fleeting moments of clarity
Mark this sacred event
Where Heaven and Earth unite
Ancient passageways unlock and align
Granting access to subterranean growing fields
Far below the frost line of survival mind
Here tucked safely away from doubts and chatter
Vision swells and germinates into blueprints of knowing
Highways of instruction so powerful that in time
They thrust the individual irreversibly
out of fear's quick sand of complacency,
And plant her feet steadfastly
On the road to the new world.
by Greta Bro 2003