Posted in Psychic Readings, tagged Bible, Christianity, Divination, Freya Aswynn, Gebo, Heathenism, Intuitive Consultations, Intuitive Readings, Neo-Pagan, Neo-Paganism, Northern Mysteries, Opportunities for Growth, Pagan, Paganism, Readings, Recommended Reading, Rune Lore, Rune Meanings, Rune Readings, Runemal, Runes, Spirituality, The Occult on March 12, 2011|
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A sister in spirit got in touch with me yesterday and asked about the significance of the rune Gebo. She is searching for her next home, and saw this rune in two trees nearby while praying about the issue.
The traditional meaning of Gebo is “gift,” but runes are like layer cakes and their commonly understood meanings are just the icing. There’s a lot more going on under the surface.
Gebo teaches us about the balance that’s needed between giving and receiving to support well-being on all levels, mental, physical, and spiritual. We should expect to give if we want to receive, and should neither consistently give without receiving nor receive without giving. This applies to all things – material goods, mental/emotional/spiritual energy, etc.
In her book Northern Mysteries and Magick, Freya Aswynn says that “giving gifts was a serious matter” in the Northern tradition (33), and that it was dishonorable to give or receive without an exchange. This concept was (and still is) present in several cultures around the world. For example in many Native American tribes, it is still considered disrespectful to ask for a blessing from a spiritual leader or the Creator without first making a meaningful offering. In this way Gebo shows us that sacrifice is necessary to manifest the gifts we seek. (Let me point out however that the original meaning of sacrifice was to make sacred. Its associations with concepts like ritual killing and pious suffering are primarily due to the influence of Christian doctrine.)
So then, what must you make sacred to attract what you wish?
To my sister, I heard and saw these things as well when meditating on this rune’s meaning for you:
- A cave, and a waterfall. Find a way to spend some time inside/near either or both, whether this means visiting an actual physical location or journeying there in ceremony or meditation.
- I heard the word “neighbor.” Does a neighbor have a gift you’ve refused, or have you given them a gift without an exchange of energy? Could be past, present or future.
- Gather scattered energies and focus them on your desired outcome. Be cautious of the balance between give and take – are you giving too much and expecting to little? Or, are you expecting too much and giving too little? This could pertain to legal matters or a contract, and/or the spiritual energy you’ve invested in reaching your goal.
- I see bats. You taught me about bat medicine – do they have a message for you? Cougar is also present.
Love and kindness,
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Posted in Capital Punishment, tagged Abrahamic Religions, An Eye for an Eye, Bible, Christianity, Dead Man Walking, Death Penalty, Ethics, Illinois, Islam, Judaism, Moralism, New York Times, Pat Quinn, Prejean, Religion, Self-Righteousness, Sister Helen Prejean, Spirituality on March 9, 2011|
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According to The New York Times, Illinois governor Pat Quinn signed a bill today abolishing the death penalty in his state. Illinois joins a list of 15 other states including Alaska, Iowa, Minnesota, and Wisconsin which have also eliminated capital punishment. One of the bill’s supporters was anti-death-penalty activist Sister Helen Prejean, made famous when portrayed by Susan Sarandon in the Oscar-winning movie Dead Man Walking.
Who truly has the ethical and spiritual authority to decide if “an eye for an eye” is just punishment for a crime? How does killing someone, even when they’re guilty beyond all reasonable doubt, serve the victim, the victim’s family, and society at large?
Hopefully more states (including my own) will realize that the death penalty is moralistic and out-dated, and will pass similar abolition bills in the future.
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Posted in Service, tagged Catholicism, Christianity, Church, Community, CSV, England, Interfaith, London, Religion, Religious Tolerance, Scott Cunningham, Sojourner Place, Spirituality, Theology of Service, Wicca, Wiccan Rede on February 6, 2010|
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After high school and before college, I volunteered for an organization called Community Service Volunteers in London, England. For six months I lived with four developmentally delayed young men and assisted them with things like grocery shopping and preparing meals, and accompanied them on social outings. It was a period of immense personal growth on many fronts, and I will always remember those men and my time in England fondly. Years later, immersed in the busyness of everyday life, I had forgotten how important and empowering it is to serve others. This concept was recently brought back to the forefront by someone I wouldn’t normally cross paths with – a Roman Catholic nun.
Last week I volunteered at Sojourner Place in Seattle, a transitional home for women who’ve left bad situations and are beginning to rebuild their lives. It was a humbling experience assisting other volunteers with the prep, serving, and clean up of a meal for the eleven women that live there. Even more cause for personal reflection was the conversation we had with the house leader, a nun by the name of K.C. Young.
K.C. didn’t look like I expected her to – no habit, no rosary. If you met her on the street or at a social gathering, you’d encounter a nicely dressed, well-spoken woman who emanates personal strength and quiet calm. K.C. has been a nun since early adulthood and has spent the last 45 years serving those less fortunate in every corner of the world.
When we arrived she gave us a tour before inviting questions about herself and/or Sojourner Place. When asked how the Roman Catholic Church views service, she replied by explaining the Church’s “theology of service.” She said that God favors the poor and destitute, and that the more fortunate among us are obligated to care for those who have trouble caring for themselves. She went on to say that this philosophy extends beyond people to include the care and preservation of all Creation. Seeing this woman’s strength, compassion and dedication, in addition to the similarities between the “theology of service” she described and the Wiccan Rede, inspired deep respect and admiration.
As many who’ll read this already know, those who walk the Overgrown Path strive to live by the Wiccan Rede, which invites us to do as we choose provided none are harmed by our choices (including ourselves). In Wicca: A Guide for the Solitary Practitioner, Scott Cunningham explains that “This is more than survival. It also ensures that you’ll be in good condition to take on the tasks of preserving and bettering our world.”
I’m grateful for the reminder that the “tasks of preserving and bettering our world” are shared among many who walk various religious and spiritual paths. This has given me both a new perspective on people like K.C. and her religion, as well as a lot of hope for the future.
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Posted in Quotes, tagged Abraham, Channeling, Christ, Christianity, Esther Hicks, Evangelism, Faith, Fundamentalism, Gay, Gay Marriage, Gay Rights, GLBT, God, Gospel, Holy Word, Homosexuality, Intentional Living, Jerry Hicks, Jesus, Jesus Christ, Law of Attraction, LGBTI, Opportunities for Growth, Positive Thinking, Queer, Recommended Reading, Religion, Religious Tolerance, Spirituality, The Astonishing Power of Emotions on April 23, 2009|
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Many people speak of unconditional love but rarely live it. Instead, when they see a condition that causes them to feel negative emotions, they demand a change in the condition; but in doing so, they set themselves on a long and uncomfortable path of attempting to control others in order to feel good.
When controlling others is necessary in order for you to feel good, you must confine yourself to a very small world over which you can gain control, and then you must give more time and energy than you possess to this impossible effort.
–The Teachings of Abraham in the book The Astonishing Power of Emotions by Esther and Jerry Hicks
Neo-Conservatives/Christ-Cons may not be the only who “attempt to control others in order to feel good,” but they’ve certainly been the most visible. They’ve been losing the Culture Wars for decades by refusing to recognize the truth in the statements above. Until they replace their dogged determination to control with completely unconditional love, they will continue to experience anger, sorrow, and fear as they watch the world progress beyond their subjective views of morality.
Women will never lose the right to choose. State legislatures will continue to recognize equal rights for lesbians and gays. The world will never work exactly how the Neo-Cons think it should (thank God). When they accept these things and recognize that the doctrine they follow is just as fallible as they are, maybe then they’ll emerge from their “very small worlds” and turn their focus to living their own lives.
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