What if you had at the ready, a portable tool to assist you in focusing on what it is that you desire to draw into your life that was created with love and infused with that essence? Such is The Healing Hearts of Nature card deck. Each of the 40 cards are embellished with unique images found in nature that appear in the shape of a heart. These are rocks, imprints in the dirt, cloud formations, leaves and even lines between brick pavers. That is the first thing you may notice when holding the deck. Not only beautiful on that level, but the energy they exude, if you are even the tiniest bit sensitive to it, will be apparent.
Created by Elizabeth Pfeiffer, MSW, whose work in the world involves energy, sound and angelic healing as well, this deck comes packaged in a lovely forest green drawstring bag so it can accompany you on your daily journey.
The deck, which is simple to use, focuses on The Seven Gateway Principles, as taught by Aleya Dao which are:
1. You are not alone.
2. Your internal reality creates your outer world.
3. Take personal responsibility for your position here in the physical dimension.
4. You are of unity consciousness.
5. You are influenced by your electrical and magnetic grid system and the consciousness of your body.
6. Sharing and giving accelerates your growth and evolution.
7. You are perfect.
These concepts are the launching pad for working with the cards as Elizabeth explains how to use them, beginning with an opening prayer to set intention and offer blessing. Step by step instructions follow to maximize benefit.
I did a reading for myself and discovered a powerful synchrony between my issues and the cards I drew.
The Step Up Heart encouraged me to ” Take the next step and move foreward on your path. Know that you will be supported as you make your way toward your goals.”
The Tossed Love Heart reminded me that “You have a big heart, but you haven’t been using it on yourself lately. You have been spending alot of time loving, caring, supporting and taking care of others.”
As with any tool, they are only as powerful as your skilled use of them and they do not offer professional or medical/health related advice.
Christmas morning found me at one of my interfaith communities where I share spiritual sustenance. It is called Circle of Miracles, and for very good reason…miracles flow through the place, like sweet aroma of lavendar on a breeze, they reverberate in my ears like rhythm, rhyme and harmony and they glow brilliantly like illumination from on high. At the end of the service, as we share our miracles, offer healing for those in need, we wish each other “unrestricted miracles.”
On this day, the founding minister, Rev. Hannelore Goodwin offered inspiration in the form of what would (in other settings) be called a sermon, that she titled: “What Did Jesus Know?” Before she put fingers to keyboard to write what she would be sharing, she sat in silence, went within and asked that question. What came through was nothing less than divine nourishment for body, mind and spirit. Call it channeling if you will…but it resonated as truth for me and with the nodding heads of the others who were in the room, it seemed, for them too.
The first word that issued forth for Hannelore, was heart-space and that indeed, she felt Jesus was that…a sacred vessel for offering the healing love that he knew he was without question. He recognized his purpose from an early age (at 12 years old, he was found communing with the elders, having spiritual discourse) and went about living it, in the face of challenge and disapproval. He would become still and silent and go within, asking his Source for guidance. He surrounded himself with support in the form of his disciples AND he clearly knew that he was in charge of his path and made decisions from that place. He was adept at using the laws of the universe to morph matter…turning water into wine, healing the sick and even transcending death, because he was never taught that he couldn’t. He was firmly rooted in what he knew and couldn’t be toppled or distracted from what he was called on to do. So powerful was that calling that it overcame societal mores. He was the soul of love and compassion AND he had the human emotions of anger and fear; honoring the dichotomy inherent in that. He walked between the worlds of life and death.
As I sat in the comfort of my trans-denominational community, where folks were raised in various ways, my shawl wrapped around me, I looked back at my relationship with Yeshua ben Joseph; born, according to the Old Testament, to a young, unwed mother, whose betrothed Joseph questioned the parentage of her son until he accepted his role as earthly father to the celestially fathered child. Mary, a nice Jewish girl like me, and Joseph raised Jesus in the Jewish tradition and later in his life, he was called Rabbi. No question about his earthly lineage and faith.
My relationship Jesus was a challenging one. Paradoxically although I was permitted to go to church with Christian friends, my father, in particular had a hard time with what people justified doing (including persecuting Jew) in Jesus’ name. There was an element of fear. When I began studying A Course in Miracles, I had headaches, feeling that the languaging flew in the face of my upbringing (Bat Mitzvah and Hebrew school until age 16) and my parents would have disapproved had they known. Later in life, I began to accept the ideas he embodied and found a picture (the one above) that spoke to me of the essence of Jesus. Laughing since he got the cosmic joke that we are all One ; as he was quoted as saying definitively “I and the Father are One.”
In 1998, I enrolled in The New Seminary to beome an interfaith minister. When I told my mother I was becoming a ministerial student and not a rabbinical student as they would have much preferred, she said, “I have only one question for you….are you converting?” This would have felt like a huge betrayal to my parents. “No”, I responded, “I’m expanding.” to embrace it all. “Ok. If that makes you happy, we support you.” and they came up from Florida to NYC for my ordination in 1999 at The Cathedral of St. John The Divine. An ultimate act of love and acceptance from them for which I am eternally grateful.
These days, Jesus feels like companion, friend and guide, not the hell-fire and brimstone judge that some would make Him out to be. Although I am not a biblical scholar, I like this quote:
Aramaic Bible in Plain English (©2010)
“Timeless truth, I tell you: whoever believes in me, those works which I have done he will also do, and he will do greater works than these, because I am going to the presence of my Father.” Seems to me, Jesus made no bones about it, that we are capable of following his example and it would likely honor his teachings by living in that heart-space and acting on the very things Hannelore mentioned in her sharing on a beautiful crisp, clear Pennsylvania Christmas morning.
Last week, my friends Jenny and David posted this beautiful video on my Facebook page and I knew I had to write about it for the Bliss Blog. Families come in all configurations. I was raised by two heterosexual parents, in the NJ suburb of Willingboro, with a younger sister, in a multi-generational family in which at one time or another, each of my grandmothers lived together with us. My maternal grandmother was one of 13 children, so I had lots of aunts, uncles and cousins who would frequent our home, or we would visit their homes. Although my father’s side of the family was smaller, there was the same sense of closeness that it exuded. Although most of the elders; including my parents, have since ‘re-located’, I remain in contact with my cousins on both sides of the family, knowing that we are there for each other in times of celebration and sorrow; what I call ‘oys and joys’.
I remember back in my 20’s beginning to understand the concept of ‘family of choice’, since I was blessed to have been immersed in one at a counseling center in Glassboro, NJ where I went to undergrad, called Together, Inc. (great name for the concept of inclusivity). There are times when family of origin just isn’t able to meet important needs for love and support. I am blessed to have both a circle of family of origin and those who showed up by Divine Design, who grace my life remarkably every day.
In my circles, I am delighted to witness families that include 2 parents of opposite sex, 2 parents of same sex, solo parents, hetero couples and same sex couples, poly triads and ‘moresomes’, multiple families in the same house or community, single friends sharing living quarters, unmarried couples of either gender mix, multi-generational homes, where elderly parents live together in the same home as their children and grandchildren. There are also divorced parents who not only amicably, but cooperatively and lovingly live near each other and share co-parenting. In my home, I am a widowed parent with a son I raised solo (well…with my village of loving friends and mentors for Adam who we had adopted when he was nearly 5 and before he came into our lives, we were foster parents for a little boy from the time he was 4 months until he was 18 months old) since Michael died when he was 11.
I am all for increasing the sense of community so as to make the world a more loving place. Gone are the days when married, hetero parents who have 2.5 children with a white picket fence surrounding their suburban home, is considered the norm. Some may feel threatened by that phenom; but it is the truth and in no way does it undermine ANYONE’s choice. My take is that love is love is love and is no more valid when shared in that more ‘traditional’ way and is no less valid when shared in a ‘non-traditional’ manner.
The photo above is of my friends Annabella and Dene and their four legged furry kid named Quark who took a cross country truck trip with Annabella this summer via Twilight Wish Foundation, when she offered the gift of fulfilling the dream of a lifetime for an octogenarian named Margarette. I’m certain that she has been enfolded into Annabella’s family.
May you expand your definition of what loving family means.