From time to time, I have to listen up: my sense of being a secure “self” living “my” life unravels and dissolves as ink in water: a healing-awakening crisis.
An encounter with realities of daily life at unexplored levels. An encounter with tangles deep in my psyche. Like the outer world as we near the solstice, a time of maximum darkness.
In this current version, my mind has a mind of its own, spinning scenarios of one disaster after another in which no part of my life survives unscathed. No cues. No script. No landmarks. A profound stimulus to my prayer life, which languishes in “better times.”
I listen now for “the small Blue Deer.”* Her song, as I learned it, ordered the forces and forms of creation.
In her native language, she Is Kauyumari. She first entered my life through the music and art of her Wixaritari (Huichol) people, a small indigenous tribe living in the Sierra Madre mountains of central northwest Mexico. In the story as I heard it, the small Blue Deer sang out her mysterious song to draw all the gods near to their Source: “form and essence, light and dark, fullness and emptiness.”* Drawn together as they followed her song, the gods, who had lived “each to his own”* – spinning from one creative/sustaining/destructive act to another, much as my mind is doing this very day – settled into their places – “conscious, mysterious, and free.”* Order followed, an order where each of the gods took on the role they were meant to play.
I am grateful for Kauyumari’s calming, warming and alchemical fire as the somewhat arbitrary end of the year approaches.
I go quiet, go within, listen for her song within, the one that carries “all that is, and all that was, and all that will ever be.”*
It’s about really getting that I have a within. That I am not spread out all over the universe, yet have a place in it that is mine alone. Whatever it is I am here for, no one else can do/be it.
I find myself resisting a path I have taken in recent years of engaging in some well-crafted, structured self-assessment, and planning ahead. My email box is filled with hashtags for creative alignment and inspiration. I cheer their creators and subscribers along – there are so many wonderful doors to walk through. But for myself, I cringe at each new arrival, shiny with promise.
Instead I gather information about parts of my life – and my being – that I have ignored – how I have made certain choices, and how did they work out? What have been my patterns of choices? Did they bring me some of what I hoped? What about unexpected consequences?
I crave quiet.
I listen to my own voices. Some wise. Some foolish, aka human.
I am intent on discovering and claiming what wisdom I have integrated. Taken in. Digested. I am intent on discovering and claiming – even as I cringe from them – my limitations and even shame.
And I listen for the echoes of the Source-song within my voices,
even within the deep loneliness that I cannot solve.
*Language in quotes are lyrics from “The Blue Deer Is,” on the CD My God is a Tree, produced by Joby Baker and Scott Sheerin (2007).
The banner photo of the Blue Deer is a yarn painting I purchased through the Huichol Art Project, under the auspices of the Blue Deer Center, founded by Huichol elder and Plant Spirit Medicine healer Eliot Cowan.