Angels come in all forms; sometimes in written or verbal messages, other times in gut-felt responses to questions. Inner guidance: turn here, go this way, don’t go that way. A few years ago in the midst of a winter storm, the celestial beings were out in full force. My friend Gary Schoenberg and I were headed to Princeton, NJ to attend an annual New Years gathering of a group called the Peaceweavers. Their purpose is to encourage environmental sustainability, conscious awareness of our impact on Gaia, building community spirit and leaving the planet a healthy place for the next seven generations. Much of the focus of ritual is Native American. I have friends in this community and was looking forward to celebrating with them. Gary and I left my place in plenty of time and since we had handy map- quest instructions, we thought it would be a piece of cake to get there pretty close to the beginning of the event. About 15 minutes out, we encountered our first detour…an accident seemed to have traffic backed up for miles in either direction. We turned around and headed another way….soon after another traffic jam as a result of a downed tree limb that a police officer was struggling to move in the blustery wind and rain. I kept wondering if we were really supposed to go or if it would be the better part of valor to simply turn around and hang out at home.
Onward we went until we found ourselves on a road that we weren’t certain would take us to our intended destination. We stopped at a gas station/Dunkin Donuts and asked various people there. No one had the answer….until a coffee stirrer chewing, fairly zaftig, curly haired blond angel offered her input that sounded a lot like: go here, turn there, take this road and it will get you where you want to go. We thanked her and soon were on our way, with a renewed sense of hope that we would eventually arrive. As we made the first turn, I commented that angels come in all forms…..and Gary chuckled, saying: “I can see the wheels turning; there’s a story percolating in your brain.”
By that time, the rain had intensified and deep puddles were gathering on the roadways, which we managed to wade through. (I could hear the old spiritual “Wade in the Water” being sung by a gospel choir in my head) The clock was ticking, as we made it to Princeton and the search for a parking spot began. I invoked the spirit of Uncle Jim (our family parking angel) and sure enough, we found a spot on the same street as the gothic cathedral that housed the gathering. Clutching our djembe drums, we battled the wind gusts and burst through the doors of the church. The event was underway as we heard the sweet and powerful voice of our friend Deva Troy offering a song she wrote called “The Path To Peace” (written to honor the Dalai Lama). Gazing up at the high ceilings of the cathedral, I felt enveloped in a sense of let-go. We had arrived. We were home. Soon came drumming and the walls echoed with the heartbeat reverberations of many hands impacting on their instruments. This was followed by an honoring of those who had passed in 2005. One by one, we stood and called out names of those in our lives who were not in body any longer, but no less present. To balance that energy, we welcomed newborns who had entered the community in the past year. Lastly, a talking stick was passed and the 100+ embodied souls (I know that there were many more that we couldn’t see) individually called out a word (or few) that was our intention for this year and for the planet. Two that got the most laughs and applause were sex and chocolate! (And no, neither of them came from me As the evening wound down and we bundled up to head out the door, we noticed that the precipitation had changed from wet to white and that the 50+ mph wind gusts, were blowing it horizontally.
Back out on the road, visibility almost nil, we missed a turn and ended up driving through a park that I’m sure is lovely under other circumstances but took us way off course. More than two and a half hours later, well after midnight, having stopped again for directions, we made it back to Bucks County. The entire evening seemed to have been orchestrated courtesy of the angel of patience, the angel of trust and the angel of surrender. It also gave us an opportunity to sing, chant and enjoy each other’s company. I can’t recall the last time I had so much uninterrupted time with my friend. For that, I’m grateful.
A gift we received at the end of the night contained a message that I pass on to you. It was written by David Eisenberg:
“How exquisitely fortunate we are who have vision extending beyond our personal needs and the ability to act on that vision with integrity! This is a gift of awesome gravity. It attracts others with such gifts from afar, grounding us all in our common work of healing each other, ourselves and the whole world at the same time.”