Sunday, April 11, 2010
I had a close encounter with a hummingbird the other day. I was on a walk, letting my dogs linger to sniff, when a hummingbird landed and sat in a small tree not three feet from me. We shared a fleeting moment together, and when I got back home I decided to “Google” this magnificent little creature and was delighted by what I read about hummingbirds as totem animals! Below I have respectfully excerpted from the article I was most struck by.
“Sometimes an animal or a bird will mysteriously come into our life and begin to haunt our consciousness. The image of that animal becomes associated with our sense of who we are and where our values come from.
The hummingbird is a common totem animal. Many people develop a mysterious bond with this tiny creature. In many traditional cultures of the western world the hummingbird has powerful religious and spiritual significance. In the high Andes of South America, for example, the hummingbird is taken to be a symbol of resurrection. This is because each hummer becomes lifeless and seems to die on cold nights, but it comes back to life again when the miraculous sunrise brings warmth.
In MEDICINE CARDS: THE DISCOVERY OF POWER THROUGH THE WAYS OF ANIMALS, Jamie Sams and David Carson say that, for many people, the hummingbird is the creature that opens the heart. When we assume hummingbird consciousness, our life becomes a wonderland of sensuous delights. We live for beauty, delighting in flowers, aromas, fine mist, and delicate tastes. When it becomes our totem, the hummingbird teaches us to laugh and enjoy the creation, to appreciate the magic of being alive, and the truth of beauty. Hummingbirds awaken us to the beauty of the present moment. As they dance the four quarters of embodied existence, they bring us medicine to solve the riddle of duality. They also awaken us to the medicinal properties of plants. In ANIMAL SPEAK, Ted Andrews says hummingbirds teach us how to draw the life essence from flowers. "They can teach us how to use flowers to heal and win hearts in love." Hummingbirds teach us fierce independence. They teach us to fight in a way where no one really gets hurt. They teach us simple courage. Andrews says the twittering, vibrating sounds of the hummingbirds bring us an internal massage that restores health and balance. Hummingbirds also inspire us to protect the environment and to preserve old traditions that are in danger of being lost. When Native American ways were being destroyed by the expanding Euro-American culture, the Ghost-Shirt religion was established to try to bring back the animals and old ways through dancing. The leader of the dance was a hummingbird. Certainly hummingbird magic is available to all who live in the New World. There is something inside the soul of all of us that wants to soar through sunbeams, dance midair in a delicate mist, and then take a simple bath on a leaf. There is something in our souls that wants to hover at beautiful moments in our lives, making them freeze in time. There is something in us that wants to fly backwards and savor once more the beautiful past.”
This spoke volumes to me as I had been so unfocused with my waning moon collage. I zeroed in on this powerful little bird, and thought about how my own fears keep me shackled. Deep breathing and visualization are powers within me to recognize and filter out this negativity and draw in love for the sweet nectar of life
Sunday, April 4, 2010
This week’s full moon brought forth some wild and crazy energy within me despite the fact that, due to cloud cover, I never actually saw the moon at all! I was particularly scattered the day of, and just threw my hands up and gave in to what was so out of my control.
It really shaped up to be an extremely productive week, however. The vision for my collage began to take form when I painted the background. I had woken up the day after the moon was full with indigo and purple on my mind. With it being such a breezy week here in southern California, I began to think of deep breaths, which infiltrate every nook and cranny of our beings. As I swirled in pastels of light, I gave thanks to mother moon for her supporting me in awakening that spirit deep within me, a spirit which has been covered with life’s layers for too many years to say out loud! I envisioned embers, and thought of how breathing on embers causes sparks to fly. I also envisioned the “glow” growing, spreading, and igniting whatever it touches.
I wrote this Haiku poem to sum it all up:
Breath on smoldering embers
Ignites the passion.