Archive for the ‘mystery’ Category

Summer solstice

Wednesday, June 23rd, 2010

Summer Solstice is a celebration of the longest day of the year and the beginning of summer. Since ancient times humans have celebrated this time in festivals honoring the life giving power of the sun, and the abundance and vitality of life at its zenith.

Ancient systems of knowledge were universally orientated to celestial events, particularly the solstices and equinoxes that mark the seasons of life on earth. Honoring of these cardinal points is found throughout the world in sites as diverse as Stonehenge in the British Isles, the Big Horn Medicine Wheel in Wyoming, USA, the Caracol Tower of Mexico, and the Pyramids of Egypt.

Solstices happen twice each year, when the tilt of the Earth’s axis is most inclined toward (summer) or away (winter) from the Sun. The name is derived from the Latin sol (sun) and sistere (to stand still), because at the solstice the Sun appears to stands still in its path before reversing direction. Of course as we view this time from a global perspective, it is obvious that the northern hemisphere and southern hemisphere are opposites, so that the summer solstice of one hemisphere is the winter solstice of the other.

In the Occident, the solstices and equinoxes mark the beginning of the seasons, such that summer solstice is the first day of summer. In East Asian Cultures, they mark the middle of the seasons. This reflects the understanding that the Chi, or energy, in the movement from yin to yang crests at the midpoint. Hence the Chinese character for solstice means “extreme”, signifying the zenith of the energies of summer and winter.

Summer solstice in Tirol

A similar sense of flowing between seemingly contrary forces (as symbolized by Yin and Yang) is expressed in the traditions of the British Isles, where the Oak King- who rules the waxing year, reigns from Winter Solstice to Summer Solstice when he abdicates to the Holly King who rules the waning year. Thus, in traditions of both East and West, we acknowledge that in the realm of duality opposites give rise to each other in turn. We experience this mystery every year when the longest day marks the beginning of the light’s incremental waning toward winter’s darkness, and again at winter solstice when the darkest night heralds the return of the light.

Many ancients, such as the Druids, celebrate the marriage of Heaven and Earth during Midsummer Solstice, reflecting the alchemical fusion of spirit and matter at the heart of creation. Though celebrations held in different parts of the world differ, they reveal a common essence of celebrating light at its zenith and the bounty and goodness of life that is given by the vitalizing radiance of the sun.

Thanks to Dana Lynne Andersen for the text and to Ursula who forwarded the picture!

Mythical, Mystical, and Magical

Tuesday, December 1st, 2009

(last blog post of WMtE8, which happened in Magnolia, Cape Ann – this happened on Nov 16, 2009)

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The writer in our midst said: “This is about the mythic proportions of our time. It is not going to be an easy journey. Do you know the story of Metis, the first wife of Zeus? Metis was the wisest! And the wisest is no longer remembered. “ She told the whole story with lots of details and I was impressed because I never can remember these kind of stories, and because of the content of this myth itself.

The wisest is no longer remembered…
Men hold the love, women hold the wisdom, that is how it should be…
It raised the question in me: What then really is this wisdom?

It was said that our natural gifts – beauty, holding space, awareness of relationships etc. – have not been recognized; our natural wisdom has been devalued; but these gifts are still present and beautiful!

And as I said in a previous post, I didn’t fully grasp what the real meaning was of ‘women and need’. It was an important thread through our last morning conversation. Need, not from emptiness and deficiency; but from impetus.
Not: I need you, as I want you to be.
But: You asking me to be, is healing. The receiving draws out the being.

How can we respond to a need in a way that enlivens us, in a way that shows originality? If I am asked to spread the word about a book written, then a book party will show more of who I am than sending around email messages.

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This brought us to this flipping insight:
The gift of need as invitation to others,
to be and to become more of who they are.

Two weeks and many conversations later the real meaning of it still is landing in me… it is a total flipping around, an upside down and inside out of need…
I need you, because of us.

Before the Ubuntu saying ‘I am, because we are.’ had been mentioned. (And I know now it was the title of a film about Ubuntu!) It does speak about the interrelationship between the individual and the collective; but I realized on a deeper level that ‘I need you, because of us’ is a more feminine way of saying the same. ‘I am’ puts the agency, the consciousness in the foreground; ‘I need you’ puts the interdependency, the matter-of-fact in front. It is a much deeper realization of interdependency for me… it is still trickling in…

One of us made a connection with our conversation around money and the sacred exchange system. The use of money is objectifying the people, because it reduces people to goods and services. There is no existential exchange going on; we don’t have a relation with the ones that produced the goods, or the way it was produced. It occurred to her that an exchange of true wealth happens from this existential soul level; it happens from subject to subject. Like we said a few days earlier, the new and sacred exchange system should put the soul’s callings in the middle!

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The gift of need, Need as invitation to become our true self,
Our soul’s calling in the middle…

As I am writing this two weeks after the actual conversation, relying on my colorful notes on a big piece of paper, I come to understand why it is always the case that I finish my blog posts of a gathering some weeks later. Many times I have urged myself to do it right away, not to postpone it. I didn’t understand why I could do a lot of the harvesting on the spot and then there was this big time delay. Now I get it! Most of the gathering is more or less on known ground; there are new insights for the participants and also for me, but they flow naturally for me from previous conversations and insights. The more we go into deeper teritory, I am myself turned inside out and upside down. My way of looking at the world needs to shift, my perspective is challenged quite a lot. I realize now that I then need some time to digest more in order for me to be able to harvest it out, to be able to write something that – hopefully – makes sense to others too.

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This said, in this last morning conversation we went into a more mystical thread.
Mythic and mystical…
I told my deep emotional experience of looking back on my life, at the time of Atlantis, in the last moments before death, because the world was collapsing due to humans actions. In these moments I had a deep realization that I had used my co-creating power with my partner and others for the sake of power; for the feeling of being god-like. And as I saw this, I promised myself I would never ever again explore these realms of magic, this co-creation with matter and energy. Now, 2009, in this circle of women we are talking about our natural gifts, our inner wisdom… our magic?
Then my memory gets triggered! Then I get scared.
I need all of you, because of us.
I need all of you, because I want to explore the real life-affirming co-creation; not an abuse of power. Our inner wisdom holds power. Can you please tell me when I am acting from personality or when from my soul level?
When is it memory? When is it true inspiration?
But not bringing our deep inner wisdom is holding back, and can do harm in another way. When we hold back, we devitalize the evolutionary impetus and potential of magic. From the integrity and alignment of soul we are needed to step into full partnership with magic, into real life-affirming co-creation. And in the ‘I need all of you’ there is the invitation to the collective (feminine) soul to fully step into right use of our wisdom in working magic.

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The scientist in our midst chimed in with some of the current facts and integrated it with her spiritual understanding. There is a relationship between the manifest and the not-manifest. The not-manifest can be moved and shaped… it brings about an expanded sense of who we really are… If soul is from Source,
and Source is pure light,
what we know in light can be moved through density.
She ended with saying: Soul has a piece to play in how to understand the world.

That said, it was time to close the circle. It had been a full and inspiring morning, and there was no real need to do an elaborate checkout; another song was the best fit.

Where we are heading

Thursday, September 10th, 2009

A few days ago I came across the blog called The Archdruid Report. To me he writes with a kind of presence, reality about where we are with our human civilisation.
This is the last paragraph of his blog post of today:

So many of us want things all one way or the other, all good or all evil, without the terrible ambivalence that pulses through all things human as inescapably as blood. So many of us want to see today’s civilization as humanity’s only hope or as ecocide incarnate, and long for a future that will be either the apotheosis or the final refutation of the present. It’s far less popular, and arguably far more difficult, to embrace that ambivalence and accept both the wonder and the immense tragedy of our time. Still, it seems to me that if we are to face up to the challenges of the future that’s bearing down on us, that difficult realization is an essential starting point.

… the wonder and the immense tragedy of our time…

I agree with the writer that not many people are able to face the tragedy of what is going on. Most people stay in happy denial, not even thinking of a tragedy. Recently, in many conversations, we talked about holding the pain of the past, and holding the pain of the land AND connecting this with holding the potential of the future. I’m well aware that this is not an easy thing to do; it asks a big stretch in our hearts and in our bodies. But to me it seems like nothing less is asked from us these days…

… the wonder and the immense tragedy of our time…

Mystery, Mastery, Artistry

Friday, May 29th, 2009
Mystery - Mastery

Last bit of our journey here together, the harvest of the open space sessions and the final closing. Three words jump out: Mystery, Mastery and Artistry.

Mystery… how to describe?
Can we reach the Mystery through Mastery?
Mystery of our individual being in the world, mastery of the subtle arts, which then allows us to grow to a collective mastery, a mastery of the collective being.The use of arts seems to come more to the foreground in our inquiries, as are stories. Indeed, people were using color and paint in their notebooks, and in the conversations.

Announcement of Open Space session

Really beautiful pages I saw all around. Both arts and stories are related with our embodied presence. And both are easy ways in to let people participate in. It brings us easily from I to we. When mastery comes in, it goes even beyond the We! Collective intelligence, collective wisdom and collective being shows up.You will notice that the people-place relationship in its surface form had more or less disappeared. As we noticed in another session the areas of life: I, We and profession/vocation are collapsing into one whole, into wholeness. So also the people and place collapsed into how we are as human beings in the world – in a new way.

The importance of stories and the weaving of them into a story-field was not really new to me, but I realized that this is a big part of what I do! I weave the stories that hear and that I am part of in order to show the new meaning that is arising in many different places. I imagine the new storyfield to be an inspiring possibility and opportunity for people who feel the dis-ease of the old story.

In service of the whole
In service of evolution



Mystery – Life – Reverence

Thursday, May 28th, 2009

Halfway during our gathering, the morning of the third day.

As hosting team we had the sense that going deeper was what was needed, both in the group to get to the next level of meaning and between the people and the land.
Instead of the individual walk in silence we walked the flow of the water on the land – literally. Hearing the story of riverbeds drying out earlier than it used to be (maybe because neighbors have drill-holed?), the well that was full with debris and wood, a flood that changed the road and so much more. Impressive was to realize how much power – in the form of electricity – to pump up the water from the well we need for our comfort of having running water! Later in the day Jacki from Kufunda, would tell that they have to draw all the water they use in their center by hand.
How far are we removed from what it really takes… better: from what we really take from the Earth, in so many different forms, and with so little respect, gratitude and awareness. Next to the well we shared a short time in silence and the messages that we received while listening to the land.

We then settled for a circle around the question: What is the most meaningful thing for me that I am holding in my place -here or at home – at this time?

It was an amazing string of beautiful gems, guided by our explicit invitation to listen with wonder, to listen – as water – to the deepest levels, and introduced by calling in the four directions.

Most meaningful for me – and part of the invitation to the others – is the building of a new human capacity: to listen, to speak, and to act as an ecosystem. To be a collective being with many ears, hearts, minds and bodies that can be of service to nay question, issue or opportunity at hand.

Harvest of Generative Circle3

As Maria said, a lot of us are trying, struggling and experimenting with bringing the mystery back into our lives; not in the old forms with white robes, many bells or lots of incense but in a new way. But if you don’t connect with the mystery – with Life – in a gentle way then it disappears. More and more during the day we realized that we need the Subtle Arts to be able to see more, to listen deeper, get deeper insights…

Mystery. . . . .   Life . . . . .
Cycle of life and death
Balancing the grounding of a new project while pulling back to be present for a new baby….

Harvest of Generative Circle8

And Ritual

Where is my home? Of consciousness?

Honoring my ancestors, because my own story is too small.

The Earth is tired. We have to Re-awaken our Guardianship, which means: Stick with it, no matter what! And still be non-attached.

Again the subtle arts:
The story of the Wounded King,

From old to new Story Field

The owl that calls at night,

The night consciousness

Claiming old wisdoms in new ways
Focus on the unexpected
What feels right?
What is right timing?

Communication is bigger than conversation

We change from being story-holders of the old story to story-makers of the new. Then a new story-field will arise.

My place is where I am.

Start of Women Moving the Edge 5

Monday, February 2nd, 2009


Thirty spokes are joined together in a wheel,
but it is the center hole
that allows the wheel to function.

We mold clay into a pot,
but it is the emptiness inside
that makes the vessel useful.

We fashion wood for a house,
but it is the emptiness inside
that makes it livable.

We work with the substantial,
but the emptiness is what we use.
Tao Te Ching: (part of) Chapter 11


More Inspiration
“When God created the World, he was not alone. Sophia – Wisdom – the feminine Principle – was with him, lived with him and gave Form to his creative Word. And she gave him her joy at what he had created.”
Gerard Bodifée

Our Guiding Question
When we fully name, claim and live as the feminine,
Individually and collectively
In service of the whole
What becomes possible in our world?

We started yesterday with the fifth Women Moving the Edge. We had one day and a half preparation with our hosting team before. One of my big realizations – when being in a collective presence and sourcing energy – was that science and knowledge has evolved over time (as we all know), but that inner wisdom has been evolving too. The inner wisdom that we can access now isn’t the same anymore than during the times of the priestesses of Avalon. It has evolved, we evolved it, it evolved us. We are evolving the Earth – the whole of its system – as much with science as with wisdom.

Instead of …

Thursday, January 22nd, 2009

I have been reading Dave Pollard’s blog for a long, long time. This time I want to share something – because after all he is a good writer! He goes on naming what is required from us in these times:

“Instead of seeing conceptually I have to learn to see perceptually.

Instead of using the tools of propagandized modern language, I have to learn to use the natural tools of intuition and attention and appreciation and sensation and presence.

Instead of learning based on planning and presupposition (based on what I’ve ‘learned’ before) my learning must be based on openness to all possibility, on appreciation of emergence, and most of all on humility.

Instead of applying complicated, analytical learning methods I must apply the ways of complexity: experimentation, discovery, observation, imagination, and practice.

Instead of learning by the traditional means of separating myself from the object of my study (“the environment”, “the culture”), I must learn integrally, as a connected part of all-life-on-Earth.

I have to relearn to learn how a child learns: authentically (=Gk. being oneself).

To move forward now I have to become un-civilized, wild. Agile. Authentic. Finally, fully, nobody-but-myself.


To do that I must let go of everything I believe, everything I think I ‘know’, everything I fear, everything I think is appropriate (or not), expected, accepted (and acceptable, or not), everything I have unintentionally become and everything I have ‘taken on’. All that baggage. All that stuff that holds me, holds all of us, back, and holds us in place.

I have to become light.”




I love it!

Some questions about health and wealth

Tuesday, December 9th, 2008

How do forest health and wealth create each other?
Do they ask permission from the sun to use its rays?
How could they?

Protecting the sky is protecting life.
Is protecting the earth at the same time,
joining vision with practicality?

What is the currency of forest wealth?
What is the currency of atmospheric health?
Where is their point of co-creation?

How do the other elements come to play?
For example, how does water live in,
And give life to the forest?

Is it two-timing the sky?

Is generosity the currency of organizational wealth?
How do peace and creativity yield a culture of abundance?
How does that fundamental richness emerge as generosity?

Is generosity the virtue that produces peace? Really?

Jim Drescher – Windhorse Farm

When time is collapsing

Thursday, July 3rd, 2008

Some weeks ago I told a good friend that I want to live in the energy or space or field where I can always ‘act in an instant’. This ‘acting in an instant’ is used by Otto Scharmer in his Theory U. It describes how you can be totally aligned in your self with your thinking, your emotions, and your actions and at the same time also be in harmony with your environment and third in resonance with the future that is emerging through you.


So, it is not following some instincts, or giving in to your longings. To me it is an alignment of your personality and your soul. In my experience it is a way of being totally alive. I guess it is like a bud of a flower, opening itself up more and more, step-by-step – a better word here is unfolding.
The difference between myself and the flower bud is that I get excited, and the flower is ‘just growing’? Or maybe the flower is always excited?

Why do I feel excited? Most likely because I wasn’t fully alive before. I was holding back a lot, I was silent, I didn’t take myself serious and many more ways of being ‘normal’ and ‘obedient’ instead of being fully alive.

Acting in an instant, it feels so good! The days and moments that it happens follow each other quicker and quicker. As if time collapses! There isn’t much scheduled in my calendar, which makes it possible to act in the now: to finish tasks right away; to take steps ‘one conference call at a time’, no big projects are figured out into detail, which then need to be accomplished, but a sensing of ‘right time, right space, right people’.

If time collapses, then space should collapse too. I can see glimpses of it in the ease of conference and Skype calls connecting people easily across the globe, in sending text messages from Belgium to Israel, but I am wondering,
if the time-space continuum really collapses can I disappear from here and appear right next to you???

Two energies integrating

Tuesday, January 1st, 2008

Recently I wrote some thoughts and experiences about the question I was holding for a long time: What am I doing when I am holding space?
Quickly it become a much deeper quest, involving the concepts of Spirit and Source. I’m trying here to uncover the core qualities and core functions of each in our daily life. More precise: to unearth what this could mean for the world that we all wish to come into manifestation.

This is not an easy task, as so many concepts and ideas in our language are made to separate. Using them to convey meaning about wholeness make me look for other – for myself more familiar – tools, like making drawings or reside in contemplation, but the level of share-ability is quite low here. So back to language and writing and making the best out of it.

I tend to see Spirit somewhere high out there and I experience Source as something deep within. Watch my words here: I see’ Spirit and I ‘experience’ Source. Maybe this is only valid for me, but other people tend to go with it. So, let’s stick to it for a while.

If we draw them on a blank sheet of paper, Spirit sits on top of it, and Source takes the bottom position. Then what is in the middle? I name it ‘the real world’; the world in space and time that we see as the manifested world with its three dimensions. Then draw a circle connecting Spirit and Source, because somewhere they are One. That is ever harder to express in words and I leave that to others. Remember: my inquiry is about understanding ‘holding space’.

For me Spirit and Source is like the first couple that came out of the One. The first paradox was created with them. Related are: light and darkness, yin and yang, inward and outward, masculine and feminine, …
But back to holding space, and more specific within the context of facilitating or hosting a group conversation. I wrote recently: “When I am holding space, I connect in my body with the unmanifest potential of this person, this group or this place. It asks for an emptiness and a deep stillness inside to be able to carry this potential. Maybe it is better to say to be a container for it, and I mean it in a very physical way. I open my body to be this container in service of something that wants or can become manifest.” In short: I hold the energy container in my body, in which the potential can unfold. But much like many failed experiments with non-authoritarian education, something is missing if we want to see the unfolding of the potential in ‘real’ time. Holding Space asks for its counterpart of keeping the intention or the focus. But this focus or intention can’t be closed or fixed, otherwise there is no room for unfolding. So I suggest to use ‘Stay in Inquiry’.

In my drawing I write now: Stay in Inquiry below Spirit, and Holding Space above Source, and I connect them also with a circle.

Looks good, but I am not satisfied. The distance between the two circles is too big for me. How does Source becomes Holding Space? How does Spirit becomes Stay in Inquiry? What is Source providing when going in the direction of the real world? What is it’s first level of manifestation (that I can distinguish)?

When I put myself in the shoes of Source I experience unlimited Potential. That makes a lot of sense to me. What is then it’s counterpart on the side of Spirit? How shows Spirit itself to the real world? I am inclined to name that Inspiration. Now we can draw the third circle within the two previous ones.

For me it was highly revealing how this map – so far – fits together. Because later on I want to dive deeper into the lower part of these circles, which hasn’t been receiving much focus, as most of us pay attention to the real world and the real phenomena. But there is more!

The ancient and contemporary spirituality practices give you a quiet detailed map how to go on these different steps towards Spirit and up to Oneness. But my whole focus of exploring this is to get a sense of the lower part and its different steps, to finally see a more full picture. And we will see that it tells us more about the collective than the individual.

In trying to write this article I had to blend the two different energies also in myself. This is not a theoretical writing. I am somehow used to write ‘from inside’, to access my inner wisdom, through writing, regarding important questions and issues. This means that my mind doesn’t have ideas before the words come on the paper. But now, here, I want to convey some of its wisdom to you, to others. So there is now knowing in my memory, and still I want the freshness of accessing new inner wisdom too. Can I stay in touch with the inner wisdom and still write a coherent piece, understandable for people who want to?

It seems like mixing oil and water. Being an inward person, the integration needs to happen – first – in my body, in my energy. Writing from inner knowing has no time delay, I only know it when it is written down, not before. Writing from memory goes the other way round: first knowing, then writing. Difficult mix. But women are known for being good at multi-tasking, so there must be a way!