WHO OWNS THE OCEAN - Number Two
A sea turtle stranded on the beach in The Gulf of Mexico. Toxic dispersant, orange Corexit mixed with oil are seen coating his flipper and in the waves, along with tar.
It is now 2014, almost four years after the BP Deepwater Horison Oil Spill, and the Gulf of Mexico is devasted. Sea creatures, birds, any wildlife dependent on water outlets that come from the sea have suffered monumental destruction. Humans also have been, and still are subjected to the toxic effects. All occupations related to the ocean and its bounty have ended or been drastically curtailed. The health of the people, the environment and all living things is under a death sentence daily.
I grew up by the sea, and can’t imagine the enormous courage it takes to face this kind of devastation in your beloved home. Working on this series of drawings, I hope to bring awareness of the incredible beauty and invaluable resources of nature; and with that awareness, a cultivation of understanding that we must protect, preserve and nurture our natural resources, never allowing corporations to use them for profit and shamelessly allow destruction without retribution.
Colored pencil, watercolor pencil and watercolor on Helbein Multi-Drawing Book Paper 3F

WHO OWNS THE OCEAN - Number Two

A sea turtle stranded on the beach in The Gulf of Mexico. Toxic dispersant, orange Corexit mixed with oil are seen coating his flipper and in the waves, along with tar.

It is now 2014, almost four years after the BP Deepwater Horison Oil Spill, and the Gulf of Mexico is devasted. Sea creatures, birds, any wildlife dependent on water outlets that come from the sea have suffered monumental destruction. Humans also have been, and still are subjected to the toxic effects. All occupations related to the ocean and its bounty have ended or been drastically curtailed. The health of the people, the environment and all living things is under a death sentence daily.

I grew up by the sea, and can’t imagine the enormous courage it takes to face this kind of devastation in your beloved home. Working on this series of drawings, I hope to bring awareness of the incredible beauty and invaluable resources of nature; and with that awareness, a cultivation of understanding that we must protect, preserve and nurture our natural resources, never allowing corporations to use them for profit and shamelessly allow destruction without retribution.

Colored pencil, watercolor pencil and watercolor on Helbein Multi-Drawing Book Paper 3F

Woke up from this dream this morning:  Hearing noises at my bedroom window, I opened the blinds.  A troop of bedraggled, scrawny, wet seabirds were pressed up against the window, pleading in squawks and cries for shelter.  
This is a twin dream to a dream, where standing on a stage, from a porthole behind me, a red snapper jumped into my arms and begged me for shelter.  Then other sea creatures; a turtle, an octopus, a manta ray, and more, one by one, also sailed into my arms and asked for a home.
http://www.tnr.com/articles/Environment-And-Energy
http://www.annzart.org.uk/Martin_3x.html

Woke up from this dream this morning:  Hearing noises at my bedroom window, I opened the blinds.  A troop of bedraggled, scrawny, wet seabirds were pressed up against the window, pleading in squawks and cries for shelter.  

This is a twin dream to a dream, where standing on a stage, from a porthole behind me, a red snapper jumped into my arms and begged me for shelter.  Then other sea creatures; a turtle, an octopus, a manta ray, and more, one by one, also sailed into my arms and asked for a home.

http://www.tnr.com/articles/Environment-And-Energy

http://www.annzart.org.uk/Martin_3x.html

EARTH DAY ongoing…

Last night, at a monthly council gathering, we were given the opportunity, if we chose, to speak to the question, “In what ways have I stepped out of, (or been deprived of) my right relationship to the Earth?”  And, “What do I owe the Earth?” and “What do I offer the Earth?”  At our gathering, called a “Dare´” there is no right answer, and it’s not about our opinions.  We tell a story (or a dream) from our own personal experience that speaks to the question at hand.  LISTENING deeply to what the speakers have to say is the heartbeat of Dare´.

I told my dream (last blog) of having the Red Snapper from The Gulf of Mexico jump into my arms and silently plead with me for shelter and nurture, as it could not live in the toxic ocean anymore.  

One woman talked about how she had recently killed a couple of black widow spiders outside her house, and how that act was haunting her.  Another woman said that before she left to come, she had a “conversation” with an enormous grasshopper (very rarely seen in our part of the world) who was sitting near her car, and she said she’d just discovered a forest to run in, instead of asphalt paths, and was remembering how much she had been taught by Nature in the past, and how it was time to finish her lessons.  MEANWHILE, I was facing a window, and a Monarch Butterfly came and sat on a rock outside the window as insects were being brought into our council.  

The monarch reminded me that I recently won a raffle at a local nursery and the prize was a milkweed plant (photo above) which attracts monarchs.  The monarch butterflies lay their eggs on the milkweed, the caterpillars come forth; eat the plant down to a nub, crawl away to become chrysalises, and then emerge as butterflies.  The milkweed plant itself recovers and greens and blossoms once again.

So, listening to the stories of relationships with insects and other beings, I was reminded by the sight of the monarch butterfly, that things are not always what they appear to be, nor do they stay the same.  That Nature Herself is infinite in wisdom and creativity and to keep my mind and heart open to possibilities for healing and transformation, as I hold the “questions” — “What do I owe the Earth?”  ”What do I offer to the Earth?” and in recognizing the ways in which I have been disconnected from the Earth, how may I connect with Her and serve this Web of Life? 

Monarch photographs by Gene Hanson: http://www.genehanson.com/butterfly5.htm

Dare´http://www.deenametzger.com/dare/dare.html

 AS THE 2ND ANNIVERSARY OF THE BP OIL SPILL DISASTER COMES AROUND, I WAKE UP FROM THIS DREAM:

I  am a singer, and I stand on a stage in a nightclub.  There’s a wall behind me with a hole in it.  Behind that wall, is an opening to the sea. The producer backstage calls out to me from the hole, but his words are drowned out by loud splashing sounds.

A huge pink fish jumps through the hole and jumps into my arms.  It snuggles up to me, close to my heart,  and I know it has come because it can’t live in the sea anymore. The fish wants me to hold it, to care for it.  How can I help the fish survive out of water?

The dream goes on, with the simple variation of different types of sea life rushing out of the hole into my arms and begging me wordlessly to protect them, to nurture them.

This morning I searched for an image online of the pink fish and I found it to be a red snapper from The Gulf of Mexico.  

It is just a few days before the second anniversary of The Gulf Oil Spill disaster.  The tragedy is ongoing.  From the very beginning of hearing about it, I knew, as many others did, that it was going to mean long term destruction of The Gulf.  The extent of the damage to the sea, to sea creatures, to the local environment, and to the health and lifestyle of the people has been completely downplayed in mainstream media. 

If you want to educate yourself about what’s going on, I suggest looking at Real Coastal Warriors page on Facebook.  They are local and have been reporting on the situation from the very start.  https://www.facebook.com/RealCoastalWarriors/infoDedicated to the complete recovery of the Gulf of Mexico due to the BP Oil Disaster. Primarily focused on the Gulf of Mexico, RCW also reports on environmental disasters currently active around the globe.”

After many years of private practice as a healer, practitioner of Chinese Medicine, lecturer and teacher, I have become more and more active in speaking out on environmental issues.  All of the forms of natural and spiritual medicine I have studied, practiced and taught are reliant on empowering people to improve their health through developing a deeper relationship with Nature and improving their health through making wiser choices in the food they eat, the water they drink, and the air they breathe. Unfortunately many of my patients thought only about how they could afford to “eat organic,” and “detoxify” themselves, without considering the needs of others less fortunate and being so short-sighted as to not understand that those of can afford to make healthier choices are threatened too, and if they cannot choose to take action for clean food, water and air on behalf of everyone, they must do it for their own sake. Now that vast areas of land, sea and air have been highjacked by corporations as money-makers and the resources plundered, there soon will be no clean food, water or air for ANYONE or ANY LIVING THING (and, in my opinion, there is nothing that isn’t living).  

If you live on the continent of North America, you need to know what an inferno the Alberta Tar Sands is, what the extreme dangers are of the proposed XL Keystone Pipeline, and of the ongoing discoveries that are being made of the effects of toxicity of the BP Oil Spill and subsequent “clean up” with Corexit on The Gulf of Mexico.

THE GULF OF MEXICO Gulf seafood deformities alarm scientists

www.aljazeera.com

http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/features/2012/04/201241682318260912.html

April 18, 2012 - New Orleans, LA - “The fishermen have never seen anything like this,” Dr Jim Cowan told Al Jazeera. “And in my 20 years working on red snapper, looking at somewhere between 20 and 30,000 fish, I’ve never seen anything like this either.”

TAR SANDS http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_5aXo87N6nU

STOP THE PIPELINE https://www.facebook.com/keystonepipeline

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Athabasca-Chipewyan-First-Nation-Case-against-the-Tar-Sands/196651757098423

FOOD http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d9K0cZGQgHA

An Interview with Dr Vandana Shiva, one of the world’s foremost environmentalist, anti-GM activist and an advocate of ecological farming and sustainable agriculture as a solution to climate change, food security, hunger and peace. The interview was taken on 16th March 2011, during “Grandmonther’s University” a three day course at Navdanya Biodiversity Farm at Dehradun, Uttarakhand, India which Dr. Vandana Shiva founded in 1987 to help save traditional seeds. The farm also undertakes research and training, along with the important role of distributing native seeds to farmers in the region. 


Today is the annual celebration, Jayanthi (birthday) of Goddess Shakambari - She Who Nourishes.
Long ago, a very evil demon, Durgama,  longed to be more powerful than the gods, and so did many years of spiritual practice to win a boon from Lord Brahma. Durgama received all the rights to the sacred texts used to pray and perform ceremonies.  Without prayer and ceremony, the gods were weakened, and the rains ceased to fall.  The drought went on and on and on, lasting for one hundred years!  The earth and all living things were in a terrible state.  Some few wise elders who still had strength decided to make a journey up to the Himalayas and gather in a sacred cave.  They could not pray or chant, so they silently meditated on The Great Goddess, The Divine Mother.  She heard them calling Her with their hearts and so She appeared in the form of Shatakshi Devi, She with a Hundred Eyes. She looked down on the earth from the mountain top and saw such devastation, destruction and death, tears of compassion came from all Her hundred eyes.  As the tears flowed, the rivers and streams began to fill, and grasses and grains sprouted.  Then She transformed Herself into She Who Nourishes, The Bearer of the Green, Goddess Shakambari and from Her body came fruits, flowers and vegetables, taking away all hunger and thirst, and it is said, even our fear of death.
The world was given partial relief, but  Demon Durgama still held the power of The Vedas.  Of course, he was furious when he saw nature’s gifts appearing. He mobilized his hideous legions for action against the Great Mother Goddess.
Goddess Shakambari placed a ring of fire around the sages and the gods to protect them and then emanated countless Goddesses from her own body to stand against the demon hordes led by Durgama.
There followed a battle which shook both heaven and earth, and in the end the Goddess’ troops conquered the demon army.  Durgama was enraged with an anger so dense and so vast it threatened to destroy the entire earth.  He roared at Her and challenged Her to fight him solo.
Goddess Shakambari indeed did battle with him maintaining one form.  For many days and many nights, the Goddess and the Demon fought throughout the cosmos, shaking the mountains, and changing the course of the stars with the power of their blows.  The Goddess prevailed and giving the demon a blessing, absorbed him into Her body.   So, The Vedas were returned, and the sacred ways were restored to earth.  As She was victorious over Durgama, Shakambari has come to be known as Goddess Durga.
You may celebrate the restoration of reverence and of nature’s gifts by Goddess Shakambari, with an offering of fruits, flowers and vegetables, and an attitude of gratitude for our beautiful planet and for every compassionate action taken to preserve and protect all living beings.
Jai Shakambari Mata!  Victory to She Who Nourishes!
retelling from The Devi Bhagavata Purana by Lily L. Diamond

Today is the annual celebration, Jayanthi (birthday) of Goddess Shakambari - She Who Nourishes.

Long ago, a very evil demon, Durgama,  longed to be more powerful than the gods, and so did many years of spiritual practice to win a boon from Lord Brahma. Durgama received all the rights to the sacred texts used to pray and perform ceremonies.  Without prayer and ceremony, the gods were weakened, and the rains ceased to fall.  The drought went on and on and on, lasting for one hundred years!  The earth and all living things were in a terrible state.  Some few wise elders who still had strength decided to make a journey up to the Himalayas and gather in a sacred cave.  They could not pray or chant, so they silently meditated on The Great Goddess, The Divine Mother.  She heard them calling Her with their hearts and so She appeared in the form of Shatakshi Devi, She with a Hundred Eyes. She looked down on the earth from the mountain top and saw such devastation, destruction and death, tears of compassion came from all Her hundred eyes.  As the tears flowed, the rivers and streams began to fill, and grasses and grains sprouted.  Then She transformed Herself into She Who Nourishes, The Bearer of the Green, Goddess Shakambari and from Her body came fruits, flowers and vegetables, taking away all hunger and thirst, and it is said, even our fear of death.

The world was given partial relief, but  Demon Durgama still held the power of The Vedas.  Of course, he was furious when he saw nature’s gifts appearing. He mobilized his hideous legions for action against the Great Mother Goddess.

Goddess Shakambari placed a ring of fire around the sages and the gods to protect them and then emanated countless Goddesses from her own body to stand against the demon hordes led by Durgama.

There followed a battle which shook both heaven and earth, and in the end the Goddess’ troops conquered the demon army.  Durgama was enraged with an anger so dense and so vast it threatened to destroy the entire earth.  He roared at Her and challenged Her to fight him solo.

Goddess Shakambari indeed did battle with him maintaining one form.  For many days and many nights, the Goddess and the Demon fought throughout the cosmos, shaking the mountains, and changing the course of the stars with the power of their blows.  The Goddess prevailed and giving the demon a blessing, absorbed him into Her body.   So, The Vedas were returned, and the sacred ways were restored to earth.  As She was victorious over Durgama, Shakambari has come to be known as Goddess Durga.

You may celebrate the restoration of reverence and of nature’s gifts by Goddess Shakambari, with an offering of fruits, flowers and vegetables, and an attitude of gratitude for our beautiful planet and for every compassionate action taken to preserve and protect all living beings.

Jai Shakambari Mata!  Victory to She Who Nourishes!

retelling from The Devi Bhagavata Purana by Lily L. Diamond

A photo from a friend, who was my patient, challenged by a very serious illness, when we first met in 2001.  She’s become an incredible gardener,  an environmentalist, and a real inspiration.  In 2001, she was surrounded by toxins in her home and work life, out of relationship with her body and the earth, and in extremely poor health.  Remember, it’s never, never, never too late to start! We are all so lucky to have and to share resources for transforming the harm that’s been done, to live  in harmony and health, contributing to the healing of ourselves and the planet with our hearts, minds and hands!

A photo from a friend, who was my patient, challenged by a very serious illness, when we first met in 2001.  She’s become an incredible gardener,  an environmentalist, and a real inspiration.  In 2001, she was surrounded by toxins in her home and work life, out of relationship with her body and the earth, and in extremely poor health.  Remember, it’s never, never, never too late to start! We are all so lucky to have and to share resources for transforming the harm that’s been done, to live  in harmony and health, contributing to the healing of ourselves and the planet with our hearts, minds and hands!

Last night in a dream I had a sudden realization that I was living in a fish bowl, and that I was in no way alone — a sudden dawning of the fact that WE are all living in a fishbowl.  I was being asked to sign up for a training on how to live and act with this understanding.  The training was being offered, not mandated, but there was no room in me for opting out, because I knew there was no place else to go.  I agree to undertake this training for the benefit of all.

Last night in a dream I had a sudden realization that I was living in a fish bowl, and that I was in no way alone — a sudden dawning of the fact that WE are all living in a fishbowl.  I was being asked to sign up for a training on how to live and act with this understanding.  The training was being offered, not mandated, but there was no room in me for opting out, because I knew there was no place else to go.  I agree to undertake this training for the benefit of all.

Pregnant?
A simple daily wellness practice during pregnancy:  place your hands on your belly, take a few deep, calming and centering breaths, feel the connection between you and your baby, and say aloud, “I AM WELL. YOU ARE WELL. WE ARE WELL.”   If you have children, ask them if they would like to join you, and have them place their hands on your belly too, and repeat the affirmation.
You can learn the practice of compassionate breath meditation (tonglen), and use it to develop multi-dimensional wellness for yourself and your baby. 
Here’s a combination book and CD,  from the Calm Birth organization, that comes highly recommended by a very experienced doula, and one of my favorite artists,  Mavis Gewant.
Calm Birth: http://www.calmbirth.org/products.html
Doula service:  www.gentlecaredoulaservice.com
Sacred Mother Arts by Mavis Gewant: http://www.sacredmotherarts.com/
Buddhist teacher, Pema Chodron, describes the practice of tonglen: http://www.shambhala.org/teachers/pema/tonglen1.php
Blessings for Mothers:  http://codenamemama.com/2011/10/26/mother-blessings/

Pregnant?

A simple daily wellness practice during pregnancy:  place your hands on your belly, take a few deep, calming and centering breaths, feel the connection between you and your baby, and say aloud, “I AM WELL. YOU ARE WELL. WE ARE WELL.”   If you have children, ask them if they would like to join you, and have them place their hands on your belly too, and repeat the affirmation.

You can learn the practice of compassionate breath meditation (tonglen), and use it to develop multi-dimensional wellness for yourself and your baby. 

Here’s a combination book and CD,  from the Calm Birth organization, that comes highly recommended by a very experienced doula, and one of my favorite artists,  Mavis Gewant.

Calm Birth: http://www.calmbirth.org/products.html

Doula service:  www.gentlecaredoulaservice.com

Sacred Mother Arts by Mavis Gewant: http://www.sacredmotherarts.com/

Buddhist teacher, Pema Chodron, describes the practice of tonglen: http://www.shambhala.org/teachers/pema/tonglen1.php

Blessings for Mothers:  http://codenamemama.com/2011/10/26/mother-blessings/

"Our bodies are molded rivers"

— Novalis

O Waters, source of happiness, pray give us vigor so that we may contemplate the great delight.  
You like loving mothers are
who long to give to children dear. Give us of your propitious sap. 
On your behalf we desire, O Waters,
to assist the one to whose house you send us— you, of our life and being the source. 
These Waters be to us for drink;
divine are they for aid and joy. May they impart to us health and strength!
You Waters who rule over precious things
and have supreme control of men, we beg you, give us healing balm.
Within the Waters, Soma has told me,
remedies exist of every sort and Agni who brings blessing to all.
O Waters, stored with healing balm
through which my body safe will be, come, that I long may see the sun.
Whatever sin is found in me,
whatever wrong I may have done, if I have lied or falsely sworn, Waters, remove it far from me.
Now I have come to seek the Waters.
Now we merge, mingling with the sap. Come to me, Agni, rich in milk! Come and endow me with your splendor!
from the Rig Veda X, 9
Photo of the original village water spouts from Maharashtra State in India.  No one knew what the inscription meant exactly, just that it was a blessing for the water.  2009
O Waters, source of happiness, pray give us vigor so that we may contemplate the great delight.  
You like loving mothers are
who long to give to children dear. Give us of your propitious sap. 
On your behalf we desire, O Waters,
to assist the one to whose house you send us— you, of our life and being the source. 
These Waters be to us for drink;
divine are they for aid and joy. May they impart to us health and strength!
You Waters who rule over precious things
and have supreme control of men, we beg you, give us healing balm.
Within the Waters, Soma has told me,
remedies exist of every sort and Agni who brings blessing to all.
O Waters, stored with healing balm
through which my body safe will be, come, that I long may see the sun.
Whatever sin is found in me,
whatever wrong I may have done, if I have lied or falsely sworn, Waters, remove it far from me.
Now I have come to seek the Waters.
Now we merge, mingling with the sap. Come to me, Agni, rich in milk! Come and endow me with your splendor!
from the Rig Veda X, 9
Photo of the original village water spouts from Maharashtra State in India.  No one knew what the inscription meant exactly, just that it was a blessing for the water.  2009