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In my early 20’s I went to a workshop that gifted me the rubber band theory. It is a simple analogy that says on one side of a rubber band are your desires or the way you’d like life to be. On the other end is the reality of how things actually are. The further apart the two are, the more tension that exists. In order to dispel the tension, we need to bring the two sides closer together. Sometimes that means being more accepting of what is and reorganizing your desires to align with that. An example may be desiring a safari in Africa and yet the reality is your bank account doesn’t have enough money. Change the dream to visit a wild animal sanctuary in the US and know that Africa is in the future. Or an opposite example might be that you are desiring to become a painter and yet have no idea how to even hold a paint brush. A solution may be to take a painting class. This simple analogy can go deep if you allow it to. Trouble is many of us get almost addicted to the feeling of being in limbo, of not taking action.

There was a time in my life when I had a deep conflict that has since been resolved.

The horse-loving gene came to me from both sides—my maternal grandfather and my paternal grandmother. You are either born with it or not. I said that to a friend who likes horses and he thought it implied that people can’t learn to love horses. While I saw his point, if you need to learn to love horses, you weren’t born with the gene. I grew up skiing and enjoy making turns on nice snow. I even lived in the ski town Vail Colorado for almost 10 years. Still, skiing is not in my blood. I don’t wistfully look at snow and think about being on it. When I see a horse, no matter where, my heart swells and I want to say hello. A friend told me about her husband’s resentment towards her horse. She said to him “What do you think, I chose this hobby—spending tons of money to worry nonstop about the health and happiness of a thousand-pound prey animal?” It’s just not something we choose.

Once when asked what I wanted to be when I grew up, my answer was “a Jockey.” The response of laughter made me feel clumsy and stupid for having had such a thought. I never said it, or even wished it, again. As a kid I read all horse books I could. Anything written by Walter Farley specifically, but any book with a horse on it I was willing to peruse. My grandparents gave me many gifts. The first one I remember loving was a book called “Happy Horsemanship.” Later it was horseback riding lessons. At that time, I felt sorry for myself that I could not have lessons every week, all year round. Instead I’d receive a book of 10 lessons for my birthday and maybe 10 again for Christmas. I also got to go to horse camp for two summers, and my regular day camp had horses as an occasional activity. When I was in college, I was grateful to take riding lessons to fulfill my gym requirement. However, all this horse activity left me…what? Thankful and disappointed—thankful for any horse time, disappointed it wasn’t more. After graduating college, there was a 10-year spell of no horses for me.

It was on my 30th birthday that I remembered the rubber band theory. I had not outgrown the desire to be around horses and it was time to choose to close the gap between my desire and the reality. At the time, 30 felt old and gave me a sense I’d better get moving towards something. So, I bought a riding lesson at the barn I passed every day on my way to work. Interestingly, doing the things we love most often brings out deep-seated insecurities. It seems that the more we want to be something, the more we can see we aren’t all that. Or so it was for me and horses. I rode my first adult lesson in my childhood hunt cap. It was green velvet when most kids had black. (That was my mom’s doing. She liked the way it looked, I wanted to fit in more.) So, right off the bat I felt ridiculous. But kept going. I rode at that barn for years and became close friends with many other horse people there. One woman later told me that I looked like a real rider when I came in with my green cap and confidence. Proving to me, we should rarely believe the way we feel.

Now, 20 years later I have a horse named Tom that knows me as his own. There is no longer tension. At times a new desire creeps in, like wishing Tom were younger and we could go off on adventures. When this happens, I look at situations that may alleviate the conflict between desire and reality, which usually leads to the realization I prefer things just as they are.

In what areas of your life is there tension due to a desire being out of alignment with your reality? What step might you take to bridge the gap? Remember the bigger the want, the more insecurities it may bring up. The feeling of not being good enough is universal, so there is no need buy in to it or believe it’s exclusively yours. Just say, “Wow, this must be really important to me” and go about your plan. While doing this may not immediately bring world peace, you will reconcile inner conflict and that extends out to fill the world with joy.


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We are at the second full moon of 2020. This is a prompt to consider what we want more of in the future and what we want less of. Goal-setting is not a strength of mine. I’d like to think this is because of living so much in the now that it’s hard to look forward. There may be some truth in that, yet it’s more likely because I have a deep-seated FOMO. Committing to one goal may mean missing out on something else that also sparks my interest. This is a “problem” only because I have tons of passions.

I recently came across an elementary school project entitled “My Ego Booklet” by Trina Talmage (my childhood name.) I’m assuming it was from a class called MYO, which was an acronym for Myself and Others. In this booklet there is a page with the words “What I’m doing to reach my goals for the future” at the top. There is no mention of what these goals are, but I was “taking care of animals, riding horses and taking pictures.” 40 or so years later and I am now proficient at all these activities and do them on the daily.

While I don’t think this booklet carried much weight after I handed it in, today it has impact by reminding me of what I’ve always loved doing. Additionally, it helps me feel accomplished for having completed said goals, regardless of not remembering setting them. Perhaps, it also teaches a good way to conjure up future goals. How’s that? First by recognizing what we are doing already that we most enjoy. Then by asking ourselves what goals could be made from doing those things? Or, by questioning what we enjoyed as a child and how would those activities be made into a goal today? For an example, let me write through the process of coming up with new goals around the activities listed in “My Ego Booklet”. I take countless photos every single day, I can’t seem to not. I’ve had my photos up at Uncommon Grounds, as well as Four Seasons and on the cover of The Healing Springs Journal. There are also 15 hanging in an office in Albany. So, what goal, different from showing my work in public, could I work towards that builds on my love of photography, horses and all animals? What about giving the photos purpose? Perhaps by having them show animal/human relationships in new ways. That thought leads me to remember a dinner party where we were each answered the question of what we’d do if money and skill were of no importance. Part of my answer was to live with wild horses, photographing and videoing them while learning for myself about their ways of being. I said I’d use those photos to educate the public about the plight wild horses face today. As I’m writing these thoughts to you, my logical mind is saying that’s an impossible dream, don’t even say it out loud. Perhaps it is unlikely, yet what if our ideal dreams are actually messages telling us how we would best contribute to the world? The fact that I don’t see how to go live with wild horses should not deter me from dreaming about it. What is a small step I could take? How about photographing local horses and how they maintain their wild nature through domestication. Or create visual stories of the bonds horses share as a way to show the inhumanity of separating wild herds to make room for cattle ranching. Starting local to see how it might move towards the wild ones elsewhere. While I’m dreaming, it wouldn’t stop with horses. I’d also document lions and tigers and bears, oh my.

Let’s talk about you. What would you do if money and skill were of no consequence? What dreams did you have as a child that you have since ‘thought’ yourself out of? What steps are you taking towards large goals? Have you any big dreams that could start small today? If you begin with doing what you love, the goals will most likely take care of themselves.

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The Barred Owl

While sitting at my computer doing work, I received a phone call from a friend who is part of the North Country Wildcare team, an organization that rehabilitates wildlife in need. There was a Barred Owl that had been hit by a car and was on the side of the road still alive. Knowing I lived on that road, she asked if I could go check on it. North Country Wildcare was going to contact the vet they work with to see if she had time to look at the owl that day. If so, could I drive the bird over? If the vet didn’t have time, could I still bring the owl somewhere safe until a rehabber could get her.

Saying yes because of my deep love of owls, I left my dog behind and got in the car (both of us sad to part ways that early in the morning) to search for the bird who was supposedly less than a mile away. I slowed way down while driving the area where they said she was and saw no owl. Turned around and did it again. And again. And again. I could not find an owl. Maybe she was well enough to fly off. Pulling to the side of the road, I called the woman who had first seen the bird. She gave me specific sites to look for and 3-4 feet into the woods was the beautiful owl shown in photo above. I kneeled next to her and as peacefully and kind as possible, introduced myself. As I looked into this gorgeous creature’s eyes, my gut said she wasn’t going to make it. With that, I questioned taking her out of the woods and her home, to bring her inside a car and a building. The intention was kind, but was the actuality of it the best for this particular bird? With questions about human intervention circling in head and heart, I decided to act on what I assured the people who asked for my help. If she did live and get released back into the wild, it would feel good to have been a part of that.

I had brought thick fireproof gloves to protect against the talons and a box to contain her. Once seeing the bird, I wondered if an old horse blanket that was in my car would be a better way to pick her up. I was contemplating this by the side of the road and cars kept driving by. It kind of amazed me that not one person stopped to check in. After about 20 passed, a man pulled up and asked if I needed anything. I told him the plan and he got out to help. I appreciated having someone with me. He picked her up and put her in the box. I left the top off of the box so she would have air. As I began to pull out on to the road, the owl began an escape. I passed a neighbor walking his dog and wondered what it looked like from the outside as this bird’s huge wing span began bouncing in the back window of my Mini Cooper. I drove the bird to the vet who had agreed to see her. By the time I dropped off the owl, my heart was invested in hope regardless of my initial sense. The kind folks in the office told me the exam would take too long for me wait for the results. So, with concern muddling my body, I left her there. I drove home and went back to work, but my heart stayed inside the vet’s office hoping to give the owl some assurance that all the stress she was going through was founded in kindness. Only later in evening did I get word that the bird had broken both wings and rehabilitation would not be possible. She was euthanized and her life ended quickly and painlessly.

I texted the person who originally found the Owl and gave her the news. We both were sad. She felt sorry to have left her when she did, believing maybe if she had stayed the outcome would have been different. I was feeling badly for having taken the bird out of the woods, into a car and then the unnatural lighting of an office where humans poked and checked her. Both of us feeling guilt over the same circumstance for different reasons.

This story is to illustrate a couple ideas. One is that we do not always know what is for the best. All we can do is make decisions based on the information we have at the time. Additionally, it is ok to act in opposition of a gut response, yet it is wise to stay open to the idea that you may have to face the feelings that come up if your gut is correct. For me that meant coming to grips with the truth that even though my actions were contrary to my intuition, they were also based in hope and kindness. There was no sense feeling guilt over a choice that had those two energies as its foundation. Chances are good if I had left the owl in the woods because of my instincts, I’d still have felt guilt while wondering how she was faring. Ultimately, this story is to say do your best and let everything else go.


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Watching a ’60 Minutes’ repeat of wildlife photographer Tom Mangelson left me speechless, similar to how the film ‘The Last Lions’ did. I’ve seen this episode before, and seeing it again had me deeply wondering about my life and if I’ve dedicated enough action to those that I most admire and adore—wild and domesticated animals. Years ago, I asked the animals as a collective how I might help them. They responded by saying they didn’t need help, so much as they simply needed to be able to live their lives. In that way, perhaps I could help them by guiding humans to allow animals to do that. I’ve tried since, and yet I’d like to do more. Watching Tom, the photographer, inspired me. We will see how that inspiration plays out.
A couple weeks prior, I went to Healing Pines Mustang Sanctuary in Corinth. I was there to see a Navajo Horse Blessing Ceremony the day before one was taking place at our barn. I rushed my time with my own horse, Tom, to get there for the beginning of the ceremony. Upon arrival, I learned that things were running 2 hours behind schedule. What started as a disappointment, turned into an opportunity to meet a new herd of horses. As we approached a group of 8, 3 were close to the gate and 5 about 20 feet beyond. I said hello to the first group, all lovely. Then one of the horses from the further group caught my attention, as he looked at me with curiosity. I walked towards him, eager to meet a horse that introduces itself. While he was interested, there was also a bit of hesitation seen in his expression. So, I stopped approaching. With me standing still, he eventually came over on his own to investigate. He decided he liked me and began showing a sense of humor. With him comfortable, two others also came over and I had peaceful and rich moments with each of them. This was not an entirely unusual experience for me, as I strive to connect with animals on their own terms often. Yet, because each horse is different than any other, every experience is new. One of the first books I remember loving was called ‘Happy Horsemanship’. My grandparents gave it to me about 40+ years ago. I’ve been studying how to be with horses ever since. In this moment, however, I was not consciously aware of using any method or technique, I simply engaged in the moment with love and admiration. It was bliss. I learned new horses and felt seen and blessed by them in return—not because of conditions that they do as I said or me doing everything right. It was simple and true. While sharing time with these horses, the others were not interested and I let them be. When allowing for freedom with animals, you may not get the connection you desire. Each animal has their own free will and preferences; let us give them the honor of choice. May we also listen and allow animals to show us how to hear beyond words, connect without conditions and be true to the moment as it is.
This morning on a run, I came across a baby snake. I love snakes and didn’t want this one to be among those who’s life ends as roadkill. So, I stood in front of it hoping to shoo it out of the road. It continued to lay there, unafraid of my tallness and its tongue came out to “taste/smell” the environment—probably to identify the large shadow overhead. In that moment, I recognized the difference in our perspectives. What would it be like to experience life from the ground and tasting the air rather than observing it through sight? Then, as happens most every day, I thought about how little we humans understand. After showing me that I know nothing about sensing the world, the snake moved away and out of the road, hopefully to live a long and prosperous life.
I’m telling you these three somewhat unrelated stories in hopes of fulfilling the animal’s request for my help human’s perceive them differently. One of the many reasons for my adoration of animals is that they do not intellectualize themselves away from their nature. Even my dog Z, who would have no idea where to sleep if not on her own love seat, still maintains the very things that make her canine—sniffing the ground to know what happened during the night, chasing potential prey and guarding her territory. Meanwhile, our first human ancestors lived similar to certain animals—in tribes and hunting food. Yet, in modern mainstream America we have little sense of such a lifestyle. One might say we evolved, another way of seeing it is we’ve separated ourselves from the natural flow of Life. Both perhaps are true. Is it time to bridge the two? The comfort of both Z and Tom is one of my forethoughts every day. So, it is hard to understand the numbers online for unwanted pets. I won’t bore you with the details, just know it’s a lot of dogs, cats and horses. Meanwhile, in contrast the earth has lost half of its wildlife over the last 40 years, lion populations included. That’s a statistic I can barely comprehend and makes me angry and sad simultaneously. From an archetypal perspective, this discrepancy between the overpopulation of domesticated animals and the decline of wild populations can be seen within the human species as well; our domestication is in surplus, while our wild—the ancient part that knows its self to be simply one facet of the natural world—is on the decline. It is my assertion that this fact is the cause of many modern problems; addictions, depression and a variety of illnesses. It is time to reclaim our nature and integrate it with civilization. This will be the new modern. If doing it for the animals is not motivation enough for you, the Earth also will thrive from this shift. Additionally, humans will benefit connecting back to their own nature—personal and environmental. It’s worth trying anyway. Will you come along with me?
PS. photo is my own from time in Zimbabwe.

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There was a decision I needed to make. It would probably seem inconsequential to others, but was a big deal to me—move or not move my horse. Tom is happy where he is, so moving isn’t necessary, yet maybe it’s time for us both to have some new scenery. I asked Life to help me make the decision in a way that I’d understand. With trust in my heart, I went to the potential new location and walking in the field came across four Deer. They ran a few steps, stopped, then looked up and we stared at each other for awhile until I moved on. There are tons of places to check on the symbolism of animals, but before the internet I used Ted Andrews’ “Animal Speak” and still use it as my dictionary. This book says Deer represent gentle new adventures. I was all in for that, and figured seeing them was a good sign for moving. Then while walking back towards my car, a Red Fox ran in front of me from right to left. “Animal Speak” says Fox represents magic. More energies I welcome and why I put one on the cover. Upon arriving home, I stepped out of the garage and looked up to find four deer staring at me. The others were at the farm and these were at my house. Again, seemingly a good sign.

The next day, still questioning, I got in my car, pulled out of the driveway and within 50 feet noticed branches falling from a tree even though the wind was quiet. Being nature-aware, I knew to look up and see what was causing the falling branches. Doing so, I was treated with the sight of an adorable Porcupine sitting far out on a limb eating the budding leaves. “Animal Speak’ says Porcupines symbolize a new sense of wonder, something I could use. Later in the day, a neighbor sent a night photo of a Red Fox family—two parents and two kits—living behind our wood shed. Another confirmation that while the choice of moving Tom is neither right nor wrong, it will bring forth a wonder-filled magical adventure. The next morning, I was sitting on the front porch drinking coffee and a Blue Jay in our apple tree caught my attention. I quietly watched as this bird seemed to struggle in breaking off ends of branches. Another Blue Jay flew up and they worked together on the same goal. Eventually both flying off with twigs in their beaks, as a male cardinal flew into the apple tree. I later looked it up to find out Blue Jay couples break fresh branches laboriously to build their nest with. Witnessing them gather materials to make their new home felt like more messages suggesting moving Tom would have a beneficial result. That afternoon I gave my notice to the current barn. Time will tell if the outcome will follow my interpretations of the messages.

Now with the decision made, I sit in the sun while writing and a hawk is flying overhead making its piercing scream. Within seconds two crows come through chasing off a single Raven. All while a cardinal, probably the same one that ‘scared’ off the Blue Jays, is repeating his call and seemingly waiting for a response from his girl. Why tell you all this? First, because no matter what spiritual practices I learn, observing the beings that remain in their natural state is the most Divine for me. Also, to illustrate how to ask for guidance and allow Life to show you potential answers. For me, it comes through animal sightings because that is how I want to see it. For you, it may come through an article, a conversation or perhaps when you stop thinking and suddenly know the answer in your bones. You come up with the method and Life will respond. That said, there needs to be a frame of reference you agree upon. Again, for me it’s the animals along with “Animal Speak’ and any intuitive understandings that come to me in a particular situation. The third point, is that regardless of what signs you see, “voices” you hear or things you know, YOU have to take action yourself. The animals in my case, were not there to make the decision for me. They may not have even noticed my presence and doubtfully knew I was looking to them for help. Yet, because we are symbiotically connected, their presence was there at perfect timing to bring me clarity. Trust in what you see. Sometimes it takes practice understanding the messages you are receiving. Know that through trial and error you will get better and better.

UPDATE: Tom moved yesterday and things went smoothly. When we got to the new place, he ran and explored for over an hour, calling to see who was around to answer. There was a Red Tailed Hawk soaring overhead while he did so, a welcome sign. Tom enjoyed my company, but didn’t act needy as he has during some moves. Then this morning, I got a text that all three boys went out together without incident. All and all, the wild ones spoke the truth and I can’t help wondering how much their energy surrounded the horses through the transition. I’m also curious how much effect my telling the horses what was going on for the week leading up to the move. I had even asked the other two to help Tom during the transition. Regardless of why, I am thankful it seems to have worked. Take that as your message to speak to the Universe, Divine, Wild Ones, Life—insert your choice—knowing it listens and responds although not always obviously.

PS. While editing this article one last time, a Bald Eagle flew overhead—giving me chills of love and more confirmation something beautiful is beginning.

Photos of Tom on his first day and the fox family….

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From my car earlier today, I saw a guy dancing to the music playing through his headphones while walking down the side of the road. It was obvious he was lost in his music and loving it. This made me smile. Yet, no one but him could hear the music, so it would have been easy to think he looked ridiculous. What struck me, and why I write about it now, is that this is an example of how it is for all of us really. Instead of music, we each have a running commentary in our head that no one else can hear; sometimes we can’t even hear it ourselves. This commentary is the basis for our movement in the world. Sometimes it’s very obvious because we can hear it say something like “I want a glass of water.” The words then create the movement of going to get a glass of water. Other times it’s silent telling us the likes of “no one makes money creating art” which creates the opposite of movement, replacing it with inactive creativity. Or a voice of doubt that ask things like… Am I good enough? Am I really able to have what I want? Does anyone care? It can also wear the guise of spirituality, such as “you need to stay positive all the time to get the life you want.” Whether it is loud, obvious or quiet, it still moves us in much the same way the music moved the kid. All my examples seem to lean on the negative side, which isn’t an accurate representation for this “voice.” The “music” also plays us into our dreams when we allow it.

Just as the ongoing commentary in your head isn’t heard by the one next to you, neither do you hear what is going on inside someone else’s mind. We do not know what anyone is experiencing as they go through their life. We may love them, feel close to them, and even sometimes think we know them better than they know themselves. We still do not know what it’s like inside their head. They may be able to tell us, but words are limited by their nature and are not always the best expression of the nuances we actually feel. The person telling you about their day may have beliefs and understandings that are shaping their moment and memory, that you cannot understand or hear because it’s not a part of your experience. So, while you can, and perhaps always will, have opinions about how someone could act or respond, it is wise to simply be curious about everyone you come in contact with—those new in your life, as well as those you see every single day. Doing so, allows everyone the space to also be curious about his or her own self when around you, rather than following a prescribed way of being. The more this happens, you in turn will be curious about yourself and may find new and interesting things that are truly authentic. Get so busy enjoying Life you get lost in the movement—just like the kid dancing, while allowing others to do the same.

In my early life, I had a friend that asked me what my motives were. With hindsight, I know he was asking me for his own benefit. Yet, it set me up to examine my reasons for doing things, which was my first experience with being curious about myself. It may be worth noting he was a boyfriend. Like it or not, they do have more impact, hence why I was inclined to listen to his question and take it to heart. Now, I’m thankful for its impetus. Often we are told what to do or how to behave. As beings that want to belong, we follow the ways of others in hopes of finding our place. This isn’t always our family of origin, as we can leave them in search of somewhere more “us.”Yet, the more we fit into a group, the less likely we will look at our own reasons for following their ideas. As a way to of examining your inner commentary and become curious about yourself, I suggest looking at the motives for your actions. Don’t judge the answers, just ask yourself honestly ‘why am I doing this?’ If the answer is ‘I have no idea,’ sit with that and maybe contemplate why you would do something for no reason. If the answer is one you don’t like, such as ‘I have to,’ ask yourself if that is true. Do you really have to do it, or do you prefer doing it over the outcome of not doing it? With each honest inquiry and answer, you clear out the commentary running your show. By purifying the ‘noise’ that interprets your experience of life, you will touch the most honest you and life will respond in kind.

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Trees and All Life

Earlier this year, I was close to many trees as they toppled over, falling to the ground. Some were obviously old and many looked completely healthy. Some fell during storms and others didn’t have obvious outside influence before falling. It was a recurring theme that I couldn’t help but take note of and contemplate. Perhaps it was telling me something. About a month ago, I was at Uncommon Grounds, Saratoga’s best coffee shop, and went blank, fell to the ground and hit my face hard. Having no memory of it, I was told later what happened and it was described as though I fell like a tree. Hmmm….. Was I emulating the trees, or did they try to warn me what was coming? What most interests me about the ‘coincidence’ is the reminder of how symbiotic life is. It’s easy to forget this, since we live separated from the natural world in buildings with temperature controls etc. Meanwhile, the organism called earth, which humans, plants, trees and animals are all parts of, is living as a whole. Where do we get our oxygen but the trees? What holds us to the planet but gravity? What waters our gardens but rain? What helps our bodies create Vitamin D but the Sun? Thich Nhat Hahn says it well; “We need to change our way of thinking and seeing things. We need to realize that the Earth is not just our environment. The Earth is not something outside of us. Breathing with mindfulness and contemplating your body, you realize that you are the Earth. You realize that your consciousness is also the consciousness of the Earth. Look around you—what you see is not your environment, it is you.”

Today, I went for a walk on a trail that I’ve been doing for 20 years. It is not one we do every day, so it’d been awhile since I was last on it. At the bottom of this trail is a group of 7 maples that I call the 7 Sisters. They have shared wisdom with me, which you in turn have heard through my written word. Today, after passing the “Sisters” I got to the top of the hill and was shocked to find 100s of trees cut down. Many even blocked the trail. It felt like a newly created gravesite. “Coincidentally,” prior to this walk, my heart was heavy. I had slept until 10am, which is abnormal. While I did so because of exhaustion, it was accompanied by feelings of incredible sadness—as though grieving something unknown. When I saw the disruption of the forest and felt their despondency, part of the reason became clear. Trees have been proven to have social networks, they help each other grow and warn of danger. Like all families after tragedy, the network will rebuild. Yet, that humans rarely take the whole into consideration when cutting trees down shows a lack of understanding or empathy, which says a lot about modern life. While I try to stay positive, there is much heartbreak in the world. For me, much of it stems from how artificial the modern way of being is. It unsettles me at a deep soul level. I can go about my business, but there is always unrest with a tinge disappointment.

For a week or longer (and periodically for years) I have felt the presence of Sitting Bull. Sitting Bull was a Lakota Indian Chief who led his people during years of resistance to the United States government. It was under his leadership that the Sioux tribes united in their struggle to survive on the North American Great Plains. Is his presence with me in spirit or simply an archetype, I know not. What I do know is that I grieve along with the great Chief for the loss of a way of life. The trees falling nearby me earlier in the year, were doing so at the “hands” of nature. Those I came across today fell at the machines of man. That difference is painful for me. Today, the trees were scattered on the ground like the Indians after the Wounded Knee Massacre, which took place a couple weeks after Sitting Bull’s death and exactly 128 years ago on the day I write this.

 You do not need me to tell you that we live in an artificial society. And yet, maybe you do. Perhaps not personally, but as part of the whole. People seem to value that which man has created, over that which was here long before us. We would do well to examine our priorities and see where we take the path of convenience and comfort rather than acting in alignment with our values. Let us not beat ourselves up over it, but do pay attention to our actions. For instance, how much plastic are you using? How much gas do you waste or electricity—anything that runs on fossil fuels? Are you spending time on things you “should” over what you love?

As already mentioned, my heart aches lately. Some reasons have to do with me, most of which are to do with the big picture—such as what the trees represented. Still other facets come from and for the ancestors that walked this continent in times gone by. Perhaps I am able to help all by allowing it to pass through and release. Even if not, it feels like what I need to do for now. I hesitated to write about this, not wanting to hear how to ‘fix’ this state of being. It is for me to move through, allow, merge and transmute when it has had its time. Until then, I pray—for the trees, the humans and all of LIFE.

To close, here is an excerpt from Chief Seattle’s letter to the government; “This we know: The earth does not belong to man, man belongs to the earth. All things are connected like the blood which unites us all. Man did not weave the web of life, he is merely a strand in it. Whatever he does to the web, he does to himself.”

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