Christmas at the beach + my new Virgin Painting

What are you giving birth to? Do you have a new vow?

Our Lady of Answered Prayers

Christmas and Holy Day Blessings to you Dear Ones!

Our Lady of Supreme Tenderness

We raise up our hands in praise
and in petition.

Open up our hearts that we might hear
Divine guidance flowing through to us
and through us to others and earth.

We have lost our way as you can see
and it seems a miracle is in order,
and we know you have access to those.

Is it possible to return us to ourselves?
In such a way that we remember who we are
and what we were made for?

Allow us to feel the love that is most true
so that we can heal these wounds of fear
and join in true connection. We need this.

Thank you for listening to our cries,
and for showing up all over the world
and especially in my heart today.

May this prayer or ones like it be sent up
today to you from around the world so that
your love flow to all beings now.

Amen.

Painting: Our Lady of Answered Prayer
(a special commission for a local Mexican restaurant in Sonoma County.)
December 8, The Feast Day La Virgin de Juquila of Oaxaca

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(I wrote this last night, and the internet is jumpy at the little cafe on the beach so I cannot send photos now – it will be amazing if this sends – my team got it ready for me in advance in case I had something to drop into a Christmas post. We are in the middle of nowhere – 45 minutes on a dirt road from San Jose del Cabo)

During the Christmas Eve Full Moon over the purple water of the Costa de’ Oro I make a new choice. The one that scares me is the one I choose. My vow for the New Year. This choice, inspired by Juan de la Cruz, is to inhabit my body as a place of inner prayer, a temple for the divine to arise.

My body is my temple.

My husband’s body is also a temple.

The earth is my temple.

I have no idea what this means of course, or the impact it may have, only that the idea of it is welcomed by my soul, thirsty for succor.  If any of us knew what would be required I am certain most of us would remain asleep, for good reason.

This choosing to walk a sacred path is not one where ease is your constant companion, but inquiry like a searchlight becomes your companion..

Inquiry that happens in the hallowed chamber of the cathedral of the heart is the kind I am after. For me, and for those I serve with acts of conscious intentional creativity.

I have been questioning everything again, as is a regular habit of mine since a young initiate walking a spiritual path. And so one might ask who am I then, to even serve? Aren’t those who serve in some way supposed to have something pure they are serving up? Perhaps. Not so in my case. My service is one of deep inquiry where the unanswerable questions preside.

The cathedral of my heart is the sacred space, and sometimes the ground of angel wrestling, where I work out my own path. A place in my innermost being, that if I am present, can illuminate the entire rest of my being. Each of us has this place within us – we always have. But many of us, myself included, have spent many a year not even visiting this place. Each chamber is created to create life force and flow, to bring information to the rest of the body.

Often I imagine I can see my heart like a lantern. From it, shines light out to body I wear, and the body around my body, the luminous one.  When something blocks the light from my lampara I try quickly to go see what it is and get it out of the way. I am not alone in my desire to be free of my own darkness. I am not suggesting there isn’t power in the shadow spaces, as the light casts great long shadows that are also needed. But the darkness, which is not dark in color, but dark in that it clogs or blocks the flow of light, from me outward. My little sins, my large ones, my rebellions, the inquiries so completely outside the framework of my spiritual tradition, that I scare myself. And at the same time I walk with the Divine in a conscious creative active companionship.

If I was in another life or another time, I would likely be a shaman or healer, because my primary directive is to journey and retrieve what is lost and restore it to wholeness. This is my assignment and I live between worlds – but instead of doing it for others, I do my best to show the way for them to do it themselves. I don’t have the other kind of gift, of being able to do it for someone – but I do share what I know in hopes it can bring about change for another.

In this life, I find myself walking a very narrow path that allows for very little else. However, I have not been unrewarded in the riches that I have found here in this rocky place with barely a place to move my foot this way or that without stubbing my toe. Instead, the singularity of my focus has allowed something quite magical to occur, humbling in the magnitude, in the study of how creativity impacts consciousness, I have witnessed how one can move their own energy with no apparent skill or technique – in acts of self expression. I am under no illusion that I have anything really to do with this – only that I hope, like Mary, to have said yes at each turn that I am asked to say Yes. To the Divine.

For this, this Christmas I find myself humbled, bowed down even, in awe at this, which for me occurs like a ‘happening’. The approaching of a being to their canvas as a portal of transformation summons forces to their aid that astonish me, every time. I wonder, have we gone too far, as in, to add our very scars onto the fabric of the canvas? Have we gone too far, by adding the wounds like gashes in red and purple paint? And yet.

What happens in the movement of energy is like a fresh powerful wind blowing away old bones, dry and brittle, and creating a new fertile space in which to plant seeds of the future. Giving birth to new possibilities.

Each Christmas, as it is customary for many of us to do in considering Christ’s birth*, we ask ourselves, what am I giving birth to? 

With the flood of love energy from the Blessed Mother we are given a special chance to begin again. Just as She gave birth to the light and the way, we too, are called to give birth to the light and the way for ourselves. The energy is present. The light has come and we can choose to enter into it.

Most Christmas eve nights I hope to be found in church. Tonight, I am listening to my little sister’s baby cooing at the moon. Ribeye steaks are on the out door BBQ casita which to me looks more like a flaming shrine for La Virgin De Guadalupe. Our husbands are sitting with the dogs in the moonlight which shines off the water, purple. I struggle to find this being less holy, although it is different than my nun-soul is accustomed to. I miss the candles and the songs of church. But knowing my new choice about being in a temple, an inner Cathedral, I embody a new awareness.

Like we say at midnight at church: Christ is Born! Glorify Him!

 *He wasn’t really born today but this is the time we observe his arrival.

 Isn’t it amazing that a manger was really a cave? And that the new little babe was surrounded by animals looking on at his arrival? I love too how after all the happenings around His birth it says that “Mary treasured up all of these things and pondered them in her heart…” Luke 2

I know many that I walk with have a different faith and path and I honor you right where you are – while feeling free enough to share where I am – and inviting you to share too – where you are on your journey.

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Next we are on our way to the Dreaming House, to Teo Pyramids and Frida the Virgin de Guadalupe – with the wonderful Emily Grieves, Carmen Baraka, Dominique Peters and friends joining us for New Years. We have a cake, white with roses, fireworks, and a band for dancing and calling in our vows. 

What are you giving birth to?

Do you have a new vow?

At this time, this exact moment I want to send you my prayers, my love. I send you a bit of the salty sea sunlight across the cosmos. Most likely, not unlike you, I have had so many dark nights of the soul that I felt I would not emerge from. Yet, I did. So wherever you are, in whatever place your own heart and temple are experiencing, I hope with a hope beyond reason, you can receive the love I am sending your way…maybe you can even smell the sea…and hear the waves… in the quantum way that love travels…I have faith you received this salty blessing from the Red Thread Cafe….with the whales…

love,

shiloh red signature