‘The tension is fierce but I cannot fly so I sharpen my claws.’
The soul’s initiation is the beginning of true adulthood. The westernised world in many ways would keep us small and childlike. In fact the mature adult is not great for business; this adult will cause stirrings in the more powerful world, it will learn to speak out and make demands. It will want to make changes to the structures that have been applied for the benefit of those in power. We become brain washed with what is offered to us. This will keep us wanting more, keeping us in the shopping malls, in the menial tasks of our existence. We allow ourselves to be influenced by others ideas of beauty, we become brainwashed as to how we should look and feel. Our bodies become a root to deep dissatisfaction when we desire to look a certain way; the way that gets thrown at us in glossy magazines. Our own ‘look’ becomes something that we want to change to become what others admire within the fashion consciousness minds.
We will learn to blame and dishonor others in our scramble to be seen and heard; instead of simply being at peace with ourselves and our own growth. When we can become our animal being, when we can seek out that tremendous primal force within us then we can step up, grow up and be the mature adult who is unafraid of authority, their own or that of others, who can take their place in the world and have a voice.
Our bodies are as they were born. They if paid attention to fully, will guide us to be more of the being we are meant to be. Each body fits into its own destiny perfectly. We have exactly the right body to take the ‘quality of us’ into the world that we are meant to be. This is the body of our own archetype. If we can fully embody it we become beautiful. We are beautiful because we are our selves; we are embodying and manifesting who we are in the world. Young children are so beautiful because they are so much more themselves and are not trying to be anyone else. As they grow we tend to try to form them into being more like others. They begin to lose their innocent beauty that they were born with.
A true adult has discovered what her place is within society; she can experience herself fully as the member of that community. She is a member of the earth community, a nation and a family. This is how she begins to embody her true identity. She lives within that place and serves her people from it. She visibly and tangibly manifests her gifts to the world. She stumbles onto the truth that she makes every day with her body, with her dance and her poetry. If enough adults take this journey then we can be sure that there will be enough elders to teach us in the future. If there are enough elders, then we can be sure that there will be enough true support for the adults who take on that journey of the soul and for the children who do not need to lose their innocence.
There I was stuck on that plinth high up in the air, no wings to fly me down, fearful that the claws will not hold to the straight edges of stone that hold me up. My fierce body dealing with the tension that was lessening as I came to terms with my life. I took a lump of clay and ran off into the woodland, finding my ‘home’ within those stone walls I began to manipulate it through my fingers, I took it into the garden where it gathered leaves and twigs, sticking to its flesh. As my hands did their work with no idea as to what would be uncovered I saw a form beginning to emerge. A slight woman sat by a large cauldron, her head became tall and pointed, she was like the Witch from a fairy tale. The cauldron was cradled by her legs and her arms wrapped around its edges. I set to work, carving in as much detail as I could. Tiny twigs became fingers and small stones became her toenails. Her breasts hung loosely, aware of the gravity beneath her. Heather’s became her hair and her cloak was made from moss. As I took her into my heart I saw what she had become, what I was becoming, what my own identity was transforming to. My sweet dark angel of the night, my wise woman, my witch of the skies.
I created for her a broomstick to fly with. Maybe that was how I needed to leap down from that great height, from my plinth in my dream. A simple broom, leaping off into the mystery. In the cauldron I began to put wild berries, a little animal fur and pieces of coal for her fire. I wanted to find bones. She needed bones I felt. Every Witch needs a few bones in her cauldron. There were none to be found. I was hungry; time had slipped by, as I was engrossed in this work. I ran to the kitchen knowing I was probably too late for the lunch that would have been prepared. I was right. Nothing left and my tummy rumbled, but our resident cook went back into the kitchen to see what may be available. A few pieces of the local free-range chicken menu had been left and so they were piled onto a plate for me with a little rice. Gnawing at my bones each one savoured by the need for nourishment, I placed them very gratefully into the witch’s cauldron. She needed her bones to make the story complete. The story of my own fascination with death.
I was ready to die to all that I had become and I wanted to change. I wanted my boat rocked and toppled. I wanted to begin again and crawl my way onto my new path. I wanted to take the myth of my own life and create poetry, write my words and blossom myself from this mysterious ride. I knew my gifts, I knew them well and I had my own delivery system to offer it to the world, but now I had fresh knowledge, a new wildness in my bones and flowing through my veins. I remembered the times as a child the fascination I would have for death. A lover of animals and of having my pets, I would care sweetly for them and it pained me hugely when they passed away. However, there was a side to me that held a very curious fascination for death. Their little bodies buried in their graves I could not help but take a peek to see what had happened to those bodies, how had they decayed, what became of the skin, the bones, the fur?
I collected small bones, dead frogs, fossils and feathers and whatever I could hide away in cardboard boxes. I would spend my time at the bottom of the garden, searching under the shed for signs of life, or maybe death. If there was a tunnel to be found I was there. I loved the dirt and the grime, playing with mud and creating pathways through clearings and hedgerows.
The mystery conspires to bring us into our own true profession and mine seemed to be one of learning to be with the process of death; to be with the shadows of evolution; the changing and transforming process of birth, life and death; the dance of creation and ultimately the reclaiming of our innocence.
There is a difference between what we have as our gifts and offerings to the world and how we then offer it to the community. We have our gifts and we have our delivery system. These are two very different things and we need to become aware of both of them. One is connected more deeply to our soul the other is connected to our ego. Our soul holds the gifts; it is rooted in the depths of our psyche, from our wounds, the stories of our childhood and all we have learned along the way, the journey so far. The delivery system is what we learn from our engagement with society and community, how well we are able to contribute and how we go about contributing. Some may have a strong sense of how to deliver something. We may learn a technique, a form; we may be good at speaking and have much knowledge to impart. This can work well as our delivery, but if we do not have the gifts that go with it then there is something missing, it is not complete without its soul.
If we are aware of our many gifts and the beauty of them, but do not have a delivery system, then they can be lost. They remain unknown to others and become only a way of self-gratification. Our task is to explore our offerings and gifts from the world of soul and to engage with the ego. Together they form a way of being in the world and know how it can develop its own delivery system.
From ‘Reclaimed Innocence’ published by MyVoice Publishing