Osiyo ale ulihelisdi, digusdi!Listen to the drum…..feel your heartbeating…..move your feet along the earth and find the rhythm….Do you feel it? Let us dance in a circle as we lift our spirits to Unetlanvhi! This month celebrates love….and this week we are honoring love of Creator….hearts full of gratitude for all we are given….realized and unrealized….we are blessed and we are one. Creator’s breath flows through our being like wind through the hollow bones…. Dance and give thanks with every fiber of your being!
Feel the earth receive your feet as they touch…..
Release your tension as the rattles shake releasing their energy….
Dance and give thanks!
We are all connected! Feel the energy in your being cry out!
Feel the fluidity–like a river of energy running through you!
As you dance faster and faster….
Feel your heart beat faster…
together as one…. Look up at the beauty of the stars…..
Illuminating the darkness
as our hearts illuminate our souls
Is there one star that calls to you
One star that whispers your n ame?
Focus on that one star…..
Let that beam of light reach from high above…
Imagine that beam like a warm gentle caress
Reaching to the depth of your soul
Ripples of light permeating your core
Ripples of light washing away the hurt
Washing your spirit clean….
Imagine your heart opening like a flower in the gentle rain
Receiving nourishment…and comfort….
Feel that connection…that celebration of all you are….the delight of presence….
Stay there for a moment….
In gratitude and being
One with all that is
One with Creator
Surrender to the presence
One Love Native Style: Week One—Love of Creator! The story tonight is two-fold…the first is of Selu and Kanati, a Cherokee wisdom story of Creator’s love. Then, Uwetsi (1 Eggman) has a very special story….which also speaks to the wisdom and love of Creator…to share.
SELU AND KANATIWhat is love?
Love is openness and acceptance of who we truly are! The intimacy of full presence that rejoices as we learn, grow, discover and become. Love begins with the movement of the wind….like the breeze blowing through the trees…love moves gently…..whispering softly….a desire…a longing. As the wind caresses the leaves…the faint movement of a song echoes….and in the deep intimacy of that caress….the listening and the receiving….love is born.
So it was with Selu. Her spirit born in the desire of Creator to nurture and sustain. The golden tendrils of the cornsilk danced in the wind and touched the heart of Creator. As the wind danced and fingered the sweet gentle tendrils of the cornsilk, the song grew. And that song was Selu. Dreamt into being, Selu emerged from the top of the cornstalk singing the song of love…the heart of Creator. Bathed in light and transfigured with love, Selu emerged strong, tender and sweet.
Kanati, the first Man, had been sung into being….like pottery formed from the earth, tested in the fire and borne to contain sustenance. The song of the earth echoed in Kanati’s heart. The footsteps of the many creatures were rhythmic dances in his being. He hungered and he hunted. Longing for the intimacy of being, he heard the songs of the creatures and his own, and slayed the creatures…..leaving him with the lonely echo of his own song. Consuming the creatures added only a heaviness to his song…..the warm rays of the Sun caressed his aching body and his soul slept in the quiet of his loneliness. Again, the harmony of the dance of the animals….particularly, Awi, the deer….would rouse him and sigwo, again, he would hunt. Kanati was a fine hunter who was well attuned to the dance…..but his response only led to killing the song, sleeping in the sun, and rising in loneliness.
His soul, heavy with loneliness, could only hear the song of slaying…then sleeping. While Kanati was attuned to this song, it brought him…or the animals little joy.
The animals grew restless with this song. They could not dance. The harmony ended always with a crescendo of sadness. And so, the animals lifted their hearts to Creator. Creator dancing among them listened. “Our song will be no more if Kanati can not find balance.” The sadness of the animals struck a chord, and so Creator sought out Kanati.As Kanati lay sleeping in the sun, Creator’s breath swirled about him. The first few notes of the song reached into the nostrils of Kanati straight to his heart. As Creator’s breath danced through his being and swirled about him, Kanati’s heart opened and received the song. The man of the earth cradled in the earth slept as two tiny leaves sprouting beside him. The two tiny leaves grew very tall and straight, with leaves gleaming in the sun, sparkling with dew. The corn plant grew and grew dancing with the wind…..celebrating Creator’s presence. From the very top of the cornstalk emerged an uwoduhi (beautiful) brown-skinned woman with long silky black hair. The first woman revealed herself singing….strong, ripe, and tender and ever so sweetly……Selu sang…… Kanati was awakened by a different song…..an uwoduhi song…..the song awakened a sweetness in his own heart. Kanati had ached with loneliness for so very long….and Selu’s song caused him to re-member his own being and connection. Kanati re-membered gentleness and patience in his heart…..and so he did not pounce to satisfy his own need but re-membered to allow space for harmony….a space where this intimacy could grow…..
Respectfully, Kanati reached up and offered his hand to Selu, inviting her to come down from the stalk and stand with him on the earth. Re-membering the notes of the song Creator placed in his heart, Kanati was care-full and gentle! Selu smiled and raised her finger to signal for Kanati to wait as she reached behind her and chose an ear of corn. The seed corn was her heritage and must be cherished and go with her. Then, as Kanati took her hand, she carefully stepped down from the top of the cornstalk.His eyes locked with hers….each seeing the dance of truth in their eyes…..and the notes of their song came together in harmony with Creator…..and they walked together as one. In the kitchen, Selu took the corn and placed it in a kettle over the fire. As the kettle heated, the corn bubbled and released the sweetest scent Kanati had ever smelled! The sweet heart of the corn had burst open and provided delicious nourishment. Like the sweet pollen on the tassels, the nourishment permeated the air and the nostrils of both Kanati and Selu were filled with joy and delight!
Kanati was no longer lonely. Now, his song fell in harmony with Creator and with Selu. Harmony and balance was sung in the bubbling sweetness of the heart of the corn!Harmony and balance are the earmarks of a beautiful song. The Cherokee teach that the balance between men and women is sacred, and necessary. The story of Selu and Kanati teaches us not only this but also several other aspects of balance. The balance of forces, that is continuance in the midst of change, is also very important. The balance of food, that is the balance of vegetables and meat….feasting and fasting. The balance of relationships, that is taking and giving back with respect. Kanati could not take without giving….it eventually left him empty.
The sweet memory of connection….the truth of his song….caused him to re-member the blessing of a kind and caring heart. Kanati could not imagine the birth of Selu in his self-centered pain….and so Creator mercifully gave him sleep so, in that quiet surrender to will, Creator’s love could be re-membered and bear fruit. Kanati had to stop being the doing and surrender to being to realize the gift. Selu re-membered her heritage…her source and gave thanks with Kanati. Powerful lessons of relationship. Creator is the source of all love….that acceptance and joy as we discover who we truly are…..songs whispered in the heart of Creator. Like a parent rejoices with a child as they learn and grow….so we all learn to sing that harmony of joy….even when the struggle is great. The song loses harmony when we stop listening….lose our ability to remain open….or, in anger or fear, or even pride like Kanati, we become too enraptured in our own doing. Like Kanati, we often mistake our prowess as a gift that serves us rather than a part of the whole. When Kanati gained skill with the bow and was able to kill one deer at a time, it seemed a logical challenge for him to attempt 2 deer the next day then perhaps more the next. Eventually, the initial reverence for the life of the animal is lost. The animal becomes an object to be overcome. Notches on the belt. This is the essence of another story which responded to this imbalance….
Long, long ago, when hunters were killing much too many animals, the animals had a council meeting. AwiUsdi (LittleDeer), chief of the deer heard the cries of the animals with a heavy heart. He responded that “Hunters can not kill indiscriminately and without reverence. We can not stop the humans from killing animals but we can slow them down. We can remind them of the law of balance. I will go to the humans and remind them that they may only kill us when there is real need. If they must take our life to sustain their own and there is real need, the human must do so in reverence, asking our permission and, after taking our lives, they must ask pardon for doing so. They must only take life with this great reverence, respecting the deer as his brother and using every part. If they can not do so, with my magic I will cripple their joints so that they can not longer hunt. They will no longer walk or carry a bow unless they can do so with reverence and respect. This is my word…my promise to you. It will be so. And so, AwiUsdi did…to this day. If this ceremony is not followed with reverence and respect to Creator and the life of the creature, the hunter is afflicted with a terrible degeneration of the joints.
Awi Usdi only wished to remind and slow down the hunter….re-mind them of their own sweet heart song. We were created to live in harmony and balance. Our needs are met by Creator….but our wants sometimes have a voracious appetite. What do we truly need? Are we like Kanati, high on the adrenalin of our own ability, yet empty of joy? Are we listening to our heart in balance with our mind? Are we re-membering how our song was spoken—our heritage—as Selu did—or are we singing discordantly heavy with need and broken in want? Our songs are sweet like the heart of the corn……we must re=member one another with reverence and respect….and re-member our gifts are given to be shared with the community and not to serve our own want. It is not a competition. Relationship with Creator is a beautiful, beautiful song…..each of us a note—ever evolving…..if only we can stay true to our note….not covet another or be what we are not. Who we are is enough…a sweet song of love….moving intimately and in balance with one another….like a dance….on the whispering wind of Creator’s heart. All we have to do is listen…..and be intimately present. The harmony is in the balance of our lives.
At the end of Soulful Stuff’s story, she announced that 1 Egg Man (Ron or Uwetsi as he is know on our team) had a special wisdom story to share which adds even more to these thoughts…..
Praying Hands by 1 Egg Man. www.1eggman.etsy.com
1 Egg Man’s Story:
Many know of the grave Thor, my last Doberman, found in the woods near my house and the Spirit that was there. That was an interesting time for me, a visit from the Spirit World, and it showed and thought me a lot. Well, something has happened these past few weeks that has really opened my eyes.
A few weeks back I got email from someone asking if I could do an egg lamp shade. Now I like doing new things but that is something that really didn’t interest me. I told the woman that and offered to see if I could find someone who might. She emailed me back, telling me they had visited my site, saw my work and just knew I was the one to do this. The egg was very special, a memento for a son they lost many years ago. They had it all these years and the husband had just broken it while vacuuming. I told her I would see what I could do but was really busy right then and would let her know as soon as I laid something out.
Anyway, she sent me all she could tell me about the egg and what it looked like. Sounded simple enough, stars spaced around an ostrich egg. She even told me the length of the points and the distance, center to center. I asked if they might form some pattern and her reply was “I don’t think so.” Not much help for something that is supposed to be special. I just couldn’t think of what a bunch of stars around an egg would look like, when they were supposed to be random, yet she had given me the distance center to center. I tried laying out a design on an egg but just couldn’t come up with anything I felt was right and let it go for about 10 days.
I take this egg and start figuring out what I want to do, how will I lay it out. First thing I did was make a stencil of a star, exactly the size she said they were and then started to space them around the egg. Didn’t like that, after 3 or 4 laid out, so I mark the hole on the bottom, to fit over the bulb, and mark the center of the egg and also segment it into four sections. I’m like hearing myself saying good, that does look good
Put a star at the center of each segment line and start measuring for another, the distance she said they were between each other. Started on the center line, where I had the 4 already, and as soon as I started measuring, that little voice said I was wrong. Not there. Gazing at the egg, I can picture a diamond pattern with the stars and the little voice says yep, that’s it. Some quick measurements and I mark a diamond pattern, another one on the next segment line and that quick I have the egg laid out, to the dimensions she gave me and I thought it looks good. That little voice is saying that too but now I know it’s really not mine, it’s someone else.
I’m looking at this egg and say, “I’m going to carve it. See what it looks like.” Over to my carving station, pick up my hand piece and I’m ready to go. That little voice is now telling me the stars are wrong. I sit there looking at this egg, thinking what the heck is wrong with a star, a star is a star. Then I’m hearing, just lines, center lines and I picture the star like that. I sketch a line from each point to point and hear, “That’s it.” I do all the stars like that and I’m feeling great, I got it.
Go to cut the lines and instead I just relief carve them into the egg. Not all the way through, deeper at the center and then shallower at the tips. Do all the starts and I’m thinking it looks good but it’s not right. That little voice says, “Open the center, just a little, I do one and that little voice was guiding my hand. “That’s it!!!!”
Anyway, I get the egg done, clean it, take a picture and I’m going to send it to this woman, all the while thinking, “ I hope she likes it.” When I hit send, I’m hearing, “She will.” About 5 minutes later, the phone rings and my wife answers it. She brings it to me and tells me it’s some woman but she can’t understand her, she’s crying. I say hello and what I hear brought chills to me. She says, “Oh my God, Ron, that egg is exactly like the one we had, how did you know how to carve it?” I told her I had help, which by now I know I did, but I don’t believe she got my meaning. She then told me about her son and how they miss him so much. How they always think of him and how much they hate having him gone.
I told her that I Walk the Red Road and where you believe the body has a Spirit, I believe the Spirit has a body and dying is not the end of life, only a new beginning in another world. The body may die but the Spirit is always alive, can’t you feel it in your heart. She tells me, “If only that were true.” Then, without thinking of what might happen, I just tell her what I hear, Stop crying and enjoy life, Cappy and Scrappy are watching over you both.
Dead silence for a minute and then I’m asked, “How did you know his nickname and his dogs name, how did you know his dog died with him”? I just told her, “Remember what I said, I had help.”
I sent her the egg, no charge, and just received email today, along with a picture of the lamp. Here’s what the lamp looks like and a comment from her.
You must go check out that photo! It is wonderful.
Raptor Ridge Originals was a first time Story Hour attendee last night. I bet it is not her last! Here is a sample of her wonderful work:
To see more, please go to: