Today I'm devouring Gaia's Garden, a book I began last year about permaculture, polyculture, and plant guilds. It is shedding new light on environmental sustainability at the homesite. Even those with teeny yards can get in on the fun of habitat building and food growing! Toby Hemenway's writing is inspiring, thoughtful and very easy to follow. He goes as far to explain why our culture is obsessed with neat, orderly, water-gobbling, useless, grass lawns. A bit of psychology for the gardener-I love it. He makes many compelling arguments against all-native landscapes and for companion plants who take the burden out of small-scale vegetable and food growing. What a fun and enlightening read.
A visit from this amazing seeker-woman made the holiday weekend so much sweeter. Thanks for dropping by the hacienda, M and J! And thanks for sharing Jack's hot nuts with us.
The planting season is upon us in the fertile mesopotamic valley-I'm drawing diagrams, figuring out how to get the birds, bees, snakes, lizards, good bugs, nutrients and fertility moving in this soil with no added chemicals or pesticides. I'm excited about the long growing season here and about harvesting food and flowers in a matter of a couple of months!
I think about and use the word "authentic" a lot. Lately, words that I have used unconsciously are coming to life within my cells in a new and strange way. "Authentic" used to feel like it meant to create my own self from my dreams, wishes and desires. I am feeling now that those dreams, wishes and desires are usually connected to an aspect that is not especially me, perhaps inspired by what someone else is doing with her life, or what may be striking my ultimate fancy in the moment. Today, "authentic" feels like it comes from my bones.
When we are infants, we learn to adjust. We read our parents' moods, fears and emotions. We develop a strategy for survival that often betrays our authenticity. We may protect mommy's feelings, stuff our own emotions if our parents' don't like them (especially the angries, saddies), and hide our curiosities, thereby controlling ourselves in order to please mommy and daddy and be "good". These coping strategies are essential to our survival, even moreso in homes where skins are thin and pathology is thick.
For me, a first born child, I took pleasing my parent's very seriously. I see that not every child cares to please their parents as much. And I do believe that I learned to betray my authentic self then and do still.
Here are my Do's and Don'ts for Authenticity today:
Remember the truth of where my struggles originate, this is my roadmap to healing
Take off all masks
Get angry, emotional, frustrated, sad without caring who sees
Fill myself up with what my soul wants
Listen to the kind voices inside
Write for hours
Say Ouch when it hurts
Find safe people who want to see the real me
Recognize the shadow's impulses
See that what I received is easy to give
See that what I didn't receive is impossible to give without conscious awareness
Have an ugly cry when I need to
Remember that strange or out of proportion reactions are childhood talking
Stuff feelings in
"Let go" until I'm absolutely ready
Stop feeling until I'm complete
Hide from others
Overprotect the opening heart
Steal for my shadow
Take myself out of my feelings when the fear comes
Perform for love, approval or affection
There is a strong motivating force working on my heels to keep me moving forward into the unknown. I know that potential lies there, awaiting my arrival. I am no longer in the beginning of this growth cycle, but somewhere in the middle. I will soon find a bountiful treasure, as I've been picking up threads leading to it for some time now. It can only lead me to more pitfalls, then more treasure. I don't mind that some truths are being withheld from me, I think they may scare me off of my path anyway. I'm exhausted from thinking, working, feeling all of the messages my body has for me. But I can't stop working.
Thought for the day: Chickenshit makes mighty good fertilizer.
"Pooh tried to think of something he would say, but the more he thought, the more he felt that there is no real answer to "Ho-ho!" said by a Heffalump in the sort of voice this Heffalump was going to say it in.
"I shan't say anything," said Pooh at last. "I shall just hum to myself, as if I was waiting for something."