Friday, March 17, 2017

Use nature as an oracle

During my recent retreat at Birken Forest Monastery, I received the instruction to find feelings of joy and expand these to deepen my meditation practice.  So I decided to use nature as an oracle and go for a walk, asking to be shown what brings me feelings of joy.

Sparkle.  I feel like a small child when I see the sparkle of sun on snow.  I am filled with joy by such beauty falling free from the sky.

Shadow patterns.   The play of light and dark reminds me of the ancient Mayan oracle prophets, or Chilam, who like the jaguar could cross between the worlds at a spiritual level.

Enough.  What a joy to imagine this tiny space, a monk's kuti, being enough of everything. Enough room, enough warmth, enough comfort.  Small is indeed beautiful when the inner life is large.


Companionship.  The joy of companionship brings a smile to my heart.  Nature may well be an oracle filled with messages, but it is also filled with the company of creatures.

Knowing.  I find joy in knowing that every moment is the fruit of a past moment, and contains the seeds of the moments yet to come.  These dried pods fill my awareness with knowing that new growth that lies waiting beneath the snow.

Mystery.  This beautiful sunrise at the Monastery was photographed by my friend, Lynn Martilla.  Perhaps the greatest joy of all is being witness to what I cannot create with human effort.  My creation of  the Journey Oracle is pale indeed compared to the oracle of nature.