The Rat Bows to the Chinese New Year of the Ox

Artwork Created by Aunt Barbara Merlotti

Have you ever heard the meme singing like black crows to the following lyrical everyday magical tune: it is easier to fool someone than it is to convince them that they have been fooled? This conversational nuance sprung up in communication with coworker teacher friends recently. Following that, I reflected on the spiritual therapy of Coyote energy, regarding its trickster elemental, and the medicinal alchemy of balancing wisdom and folly that we have referenced in past blog entries. How will our Grandchildren look at the Good Old Boy network of greedy governmental narcissism, the elitist entitlement of the Trump presidency, and subsequent mob’s violent stormtrooping of The Capitol in Washington, D.C.? It’s hard not to be reminded of Obi Wan Kenobi’s Jedi wit, “who’s more foolish, the fool or the fool who follows him?” The next several years will not be easy. But I do believe that we will rise out of these ashes like a Phoenix, by bringing more balance to the Force.

Personally, the above dynamic is particularly challenging when in the company of others, as I have a strong, single minded streak, and have relied heavily on my gut instincts in life. While being single minded, and self deterministic can be a sound survival skill, and good strategy for living at times, it can also be a curse. Being overly single minded, and self deterministic can come across as entitled, and too selfish to other people. When reflecting on the reality of this perspective, I am reminded of working with the New Age of Aquarius in a balanced way. Like the Wolf Government, the politics of Aquarius dances with balancing individualism with collective group consciousness. How do we balance the needs of nurturing our individual souls with the needs of the collective souls? It’s not an exact science or fixed destination, but more of an unfolding process.

Additionally, there is the street credibility of giving respect to others when respect is shown to you. In much the same way as we see in the old world classic series Game of Thrones, respect is earned, and based on a strict adherence to rituals, rules, and edicts. But a deeper quality of respect does exist, if we only allow for it. When journeying into this dimension, we are invited to dig a little deeper to access this truth, which arrives intuitively from the Dreamtime. For example, a fellow spiritual traveler echoed this awareness by asserting, “the Wabanaki notion of respect is unconditional. It lives inside of me, and the more I become aware of that, then I naturally respect others.” Thankfully, we have spiritual teachers that have lived on this planet before, as well as those that are living on the planet today that are good role models for us. We can emulate them so that we can awaken these truths within so that they become self evident. The more of us that are awakening to this dimension of respect, the more it is becoming a shared experience. Check out this short video that further captures the sentiment at Indian Island Penobscot Nation: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1pB1Y-s4UoNilF-zq0ETXzFv1tez2WEQs/view

Contextually, when watching the current events of your own life, are you finding yourself untangling from a complex web of your old self, past experiences, awakening to new beginnings, budding energies stirring within, and itching to spring forth out into the sunlight? That would make sense, as Mercury is in retrograde right now till February 20th. Keep in mind that Thursday is a New Moon, and Friday, February 12th is the Chinese-Lunar New Year of the Ox. Spring is on its way, and happening right now, energetically speaking. As we have discussed in earlier blogs, Ox symbolizes humility, hard work, and emotional regulation. What is more, their energies are good reminders that it is important that everyone be allowed to contribute in group work. Sometimes, it is good to stay in your lane, and trust that others will do their part. This process also invites us to be mindful of letting go, and surrendering to the will of the Universe. I can hear an old football friend’s wit, “There is no ‘I’ in the team, but there is a ‘me’“.

More importantly, Chinese Astrology tells a story about when the Buddha summoned all the animals to establish an orderly sequence to the Chinese Zodiac. Moreover, “in the race, the Ox would have taken the honor taking first place had it not been for the clever and cunning Rat, who rode the back of the Ox and jumped forward at the finish line to steal away the top award.” Given that rats are very shrewd, coupled with an apparant zeal for competition, their connection to the term rat race seems apropos. I hardly think it’s a coincidence, given that behaviorist psychology gained social science credence from the results yielded by studying laboratory rats in scientific experiments. The capitalist/socialist system that we live in today mirrors that science.

Furthermore, when exploring the inner realm of meditative spaciousness, consider contemplating the Sacred Geometric Arcturian wisdom regarding balance: “The energy of balance helps you recognize yourself. If you are true to your feelings, if you recognize your own truth, nothing will be able to disturb your balance.” Reportedly, some of these Arcturian inspired, and recommended assertive I-messages are to say, “I release all thought programs that no longer serve me” and “clear out (toxic habituated) thought programs.” These are examples of how we can shift the spotlight of our purposeful attention from negative self talk to positive self talk. We can do this by embracing the Chattering Monkey Mind, rather than trying to push it away or throw it in the trash. Moreover, meditation on the spirit of Bear reinforces the power of respecting your own personal authority, and the boundaries of self in relationship with others. Set your intention to the Dream Lodge, and ask for safe travels in your sleep/dream cycle. This is not always easy during our waking hours, but it is a good way to let go before a good night’s rest.

Finally, when examining balance in our daily lives, it is always important to live with intention, and try to follow those footsteps with commitment. That is the trick to play with during our daily walking meditation along the trails of life. When we are walking in the center of the circle, we need to be mindful of not getting too swayed to the right or the left. Have we ever lived in such divided times? Indeed, these are the days to remember, where we are being called to heal the illusion of Polarity Consciousness. All that means is that our Higher Selves are bringing in higher energies to illuminate the shadows of our lower selves in the underground tunnels of our subconscious minds. In this awakening New Age and Paradigm, we are transitioning into an era of Diversity in Unity. We are all created equal, but are also uniquely diverse expressions of Spirit. And yet we are all part of Oneness. The Rainbow of Children under the Sun and the Moon that we all are. The Middle School Civil Rights Students I work with get that concept. Or like Mr. Miyagi captured in the classic film The Karate Kid so simply, “different, but same.”

Take care of yourselves everyone,

Ari

May This Full Flower Moon Awaken the Fragrance of our Collective Air

Some of our ancestors called this Full Moon a Full Flower Moon
because many spring flowers are blooming around this time.

A New Moon arrives on May 22nd.

For various reasons, this Full Moon on May 7th is also being called a Supermoon –
the third consecutive one of its kind in 2020.

This threepeat makes for an appetizing prequel to this
Summer’s polyenergetic Astrological Eclipse Season.

They will be arriving on the Summer Solstice in later June.

Energies intensify more than usual around these times.

But this Full Moon is also called the Wesak Full Moon.

This is symbolic of the Buddha’s Light of Compassion that shines brightly
on the consciousness of our planet at this time.

It’s always good to have a compassionate approach.
But especially good medicine when spirits spring out, and up.

Do whatever you can to ground yourself, so that
your feet stay anchored into the Earth.

In the Northern Hemisphere of the Americas,
many of us remember learning the mantra:

April showers bring May flowers

Today, it’s especially hard to be a student or work at a school
when school isn’t in session.

Many people are out of work, or being told to stay home.
But how do I make a living? What do I do with myself?

Beyond a shadow of a doubt, we are experiencing great adversity –
humans especially, know calamity on the planet right now.

But there are positive signs regarding the environmental impact
of staying home, and consuming less fossil fuels on our ecosystems.

I’m hearing students, and coworkers say that they miss being at school.
This is coming from people that you don’t typically hear express those sentiments.

And I’ve heard stories about areas in the Himalaya’s
that you couldn’t see a month ago.

Reportedly, skies are clearing to show their beautiful vistas
to the world again in that location.

As if we needed any proof that fossil fuels
don’t adversely affect humans, and all Earthlings!

They certainly aren’t good for the multidimensional Universe either.

What you can do with this adversity right now,
is allow yourself to awaken to the present moment,
and sit with what is.

You can become mindful of the energy of your thoughts,
and the emotions that connect to those thoughts.

You can become mindful of your breath, replace your fears,
and quiet your chattering monkey mind with peaceful, calming thoughts.

Do this one step, one breath, and one moment at a time.

On the horizontal level, you can play with the forms, including your own.

Get plenty of rest, practice self-care, follow a routine,
nurture your creativity by writing, making art, music
take photojournalistic pictures, drink plenty of water, and eat healthy foods.

On a vertical level, unplug from the gadgets,
travel inside your body into your formless dimension,
and notice what awakens within you in the quiet darkness.

What comes up for you in this empty space?

Can you come down into your soul into this unknowing,
and unmanifested area of you that might want to become conscious?

This is a place beyond ingrained thinking, and robotic habits.
It is a space beyond linear, clock time, and schedules.

Yet paradoxically, you can access this space within the
mundane tasks of your daily routine.

This is where the magic wakes up by allowing your
consciousness to see the light of day.

This is the place where the
darkness of night walks out in the sunlight.

It is a commingling partnership with our masculine, and feminine beingness –
inside of ourselves, and outward bound with each other.

Till we tweet again peeps,

Ari

November Rain & A Full Beaver Moon

November has arrived, and days are becoming darker
in the Northern hemisphere.

We are moving closer to the Winter Solstice,
our darkest day of the year.

But following that, we begin coaxing back the light.

When the shades of Mercury in Retrograde are drawn,
it can fog the left brain, and leave you feeling cloudy.

Here in Maine, November is traditionally the gloomiest month of the year.

Given the thinning veils between spirit and material realms,
and the end of daylight savings time, there are many natural feelings
associated with the dark energies around death, dying, and darkness in general.

Of course, we have been taught to fear the dark in our modern world.

In fact, religions have demonized the dark –
even at times enslaved, and burned people at the stake out of fear.

Just look at how we glorify our attachments to our bodies,
and fear the extinction of them.

But our souls, like the yin and the yang have both sunlight and dark nights.
Every soul has masculine and feminine energies living within it.

You do not have to be seduced by your fears or your dark side.
If you are, then you will become consumed by them,
and attract more of the same.

The opposite is true if you focus on the positive,
and look for the silver lining.

The key dynamic to embrace your oneness with everything,
and celebrate the diversity that makes you unique.

How do you see yourself right now?

Do you see yourselves as separate from others?

Are you becoming the change you want to see in the world?

In my experience, Winter has been a hard time for me,
as the date of January 25, marks the tragic date of my mom’s
death by suicide many moons ago – 25 years to be exact.

Sadly, it is getting harder for people to live on the planet,
and more people are ending their lives.

I feel their pain, and I get their plight, as most empaths do.

The trick is not to cut yourself off from the gift to feel, nor
take the pains of others personally, and also to know discernment with
relation to boundaries.

But according to the Chinese Lunar New Year,
January 25 signals the Year of the Rat.

The social science geek in me appreciates the connection between Rat, and
rat psychology – a derivative of behaviorism, a form of the
science of psychology.

We have been conditioned to buy into a material world that
peddles a dangerous game of rewards and punishments.

Many people that don’t fit into that paradigm,
feel left out, lost and alone.

But the spiritual power of Rat invites meditation onto another possibility.

Do you remember the story about when the Buddha welcomed
the arrival of all the animals to his teachings,
and the first one of 12 to show up was the rat?

At the precipice of a New Age and Paradigm,
the time is now to redefine our idea of success.

We need to become more shrewd in our doings, and awaken strategies to
more effectively tame our nervous woodland creature energy.

Mindfulness is a way out of our suffering that allows us to breathe
in the power of now as it awakens in the present moment.

Meditation trains us to leave the depression of the
past alone, and calm the anxiety of the future.

It is not a cure, but it is a skill that can be developed,
and improve with practice.

The Beaver Full Moon rises in the skies on November 12.

Given their industry, and creative exit strategies,
the energies of Beaver can help you spring the traps in your consciousness.

Remember that consciousness is behind everything,
even the most advanced human brains,
and other intelligences at play.

So you might as well forget about outwitting Nature, or getting caught up
in the manipulations of the egoic mind’s behavioral traps.

The Universe is not out to get you, nor is it an enemy that needs to
be beaten up, subjugated or killed.

At the end of the day, we all need to build new neurons, neighborhoods,
and make friends with our own inner space.

When we do that, alternative energy is cultivated in a way
that is based on the Universal pillars of Love and Truth.

Till we tweet again,

Ari

Getting Real with Blue Jay

Blue Jay commingle with energies of pretending, wearing masks
and true to the self mastership

But Blue Jay doesn’t care which path you choose –
that is between you, Great Spirit, Earth and the Heavens . . .

As part of the Crow family, these spirited birds remind us
of the primal creative element of life

With Mercury coming out of Retrograde,
the fog begins to lift . . .

Rising sunlight torches any shadowy areas with the
heart and fire of compassion!

May the energies of next Sunday’s Wesak Full Moon spring forth clarity and
compassion to purify any dark areas that need to walk into the light

It is good to revisit old aspects of ourselves, so that we can move
forward into a new chapter . . .

As we shift into new dimensions, the Earth evolves into new vibrations . . .

The more of us that become the change we want to see in the world,
the greater reflection of that playing out in our everyday experiences!

May Blue Jay can guide you into co-authoring a new script of a
new you being an agent of change in alignment with a New Earth . . .

See you up the trails,

Ari

Frogs Hop In

It has been said that Frog hears thunderclouds,
and call in the rains to give our souls a spring cleaning

And here we are living in times of purification

Giving ourselves permission to grieve and experience sadness
is part of learning how to be an authentic human being

The light may be rising, but the whispering
dark nights of Winter have left their mark

Attachments to our friends, relations, and peers is part of being human

And yet it is good medicine to meditate on
letting go, releasing, and relaxing these attachments

When racing thoughts, and the anxieties of the chattering monkey mind
are weighing you down . . .

Picture a Frog with a mantra to “stop it!”

Remember when we are feeling lost and alone,
we should honor those feelings with gentle examination

At the same time, we can trust that the sunshine and rainbows are on their way

Like the Phoenix Rising, it is always darkest before dawn

Try not to get sucked into the murky quick sand of societal’s swamp

Keep your wits about you, and remember to explore
the playground of your inner tapestry with empathy and curiosity

Even if someone gives you a superficial compliment about the way you look,
just say “thank you.”

Meditation on gratitude is always an attitude adjustment
in allowing your heart to take in the love that you deserve

It’s harder to have an icy heart, when you shine the light of compassion on it

May the arriving Wesak Full Moon in later April
shower the Buddha’s light onto your soul!

See you up the trails,

Ari

Spiritual Swimming with Otter in the Week Ahead

Otter can facilitate a sweet sense of surrender,
and relax control issues between tension of energetic opposites . . .

A Full Worm Moon arrives on Thursday
Daylight Savings Time is coming soon down the pike

Spring Equinox is also arriving in the coming Pisces tides of March

Masculine and Feminine energies will dance together in equanimity . . .
Shouldn’t that be a good role model enacted by humanity?

Freeing our minds from our likes and dislikes helps heal our
natural human tendency to move away from what we
don’t want versus moving toward what we want more of

Just empathize for a moment that the gaining popularity of
the GLBTQ modern label is nothing new from the perspective of our
collective consciousness, sentient being history!

It’s just outside the box from a cookie cutter, Americancentric perspective

Consider meeting both opposite sides of the same coin with
an aware/soft mind, let it be, and let it go . . .

Cultivating sound mental health is a process of letting go of our
preferred/non-preferred experiences, yet responding to awareness instead of
reacting to our reality-based judgements

If only we meet our challenges with an aware opportunity of a soft mind,
a puncture-proof spirit of letting go, and be open to whatever
it is we are experiencing with love, and compassionate kindness . . .

But seasons don’t come and go in concrete steps in Nature
Her feminine power isn’t always cut and dry like that

The universal Law of Impermanence merely reflects Nature’s Way
that the only constant is change

An old meditative mantra of let it be and this too shall pass is good medicine
to remember always, but especially during energetic seasonal transitions

Otter, like Dolphins know how to be playful,
even when minding their daily business affairs

Our pleasures, aches, pains and injuries
will die just like we will someday . . .

May we all do the best that we can

Otters reflect relaxation as a balanced approach to work and play
Are you able to whistle while you work?

We suffer because we tend to forget living in harmony with the
changing seasons of life, which often results in fights . . .

But Otter reminds us it’s about how we flow with the fluid sensational waters of life

The gravitational pull of our world is heavy and serious enough . . .
But don’t let that take away your right to experience enjoyment

Goliath is a metaphor in our old testament consciousness that is
even more proliferated and pronounced in our world today

Just look at the NRA as part of the big business strangulation
of our sovereignty by the miserly ways of the Powers that Be

Mental illness is about doing the same thing over and over,
and expecting different results

But genuflection to the better devil you know mind-set is comforting,
even if toxic and against your own self-interest . . .

At the end of the day, nobody really benefits from a maximum economic
profit off of sickness, and death,
albeit under the guise of protection and security . . .

Is American ready to become an embodiment of showing a moral responsibility
to provide equal pay/livable wages, universal health care, and
a built-in emphasises on vacation/leisure/free choice time
to create your own self-determined experiences?

Or is that perspective only reserved for those that work hard within the
entitled, privileged inner circles of the minority of the opulent?

Till the next trailhead,

Ari

Hanging Upside Down with Bat

A New Moon arrives tomorrow
Reflecting new opportunities and beginnings

Bat’s energetic footprint is symbolic of metamorphosis and change
Colorful Autumn leaves are fading, falling and dying

A metaphorical death of the old self
Hangs on by a thread like the ways of a dying old world

Bat and New Moon hint at the rebirthing process
cross-pollinating the fruits of an Aquarian Age

Meditation on Rome, reveals Trump is like megalomania emperors of an old age
But the Eternal City wasn’t built in a day

Like overthrown dictators of past lives, his time is going to come

Out on the streets, civil disobedience inspires a rising tide
of waves of change that will inundate even the Buddha and Christ
from deeper and higher dimensions

Time to surrender to the will of the Universe
and let go of the pyramid and elitist rule by the few

Moving further into our mysterious feminine sides
awakens the power of water

Flow with the gentle, gradual and softness of yin’s momentum
Tis the season to turn our clocks back yinward

Use the energies of the New Moon and Bat
to release your old self that no longer serves you
and see yourself transforming into who you want to become

Till we meet again along the trails,

Ari

Swan Swims Gracefully into New Age Waters

Imagine the old story of the ugly duckling growing into a beautiful Swan
inspires humanity to undergo a similar transformation in consciousness

Perhaps it looks like an unlikely story, but then again
these are the days of wonders and miracles

A Full Flower Moon rises in the skies this week

It is also called a Wesak Full Moon
when Buddha’s light was born into our world

A flowering spiritual awakening is everywhere

But where there is light, there is also dark
There are many growing dangers out there

Keep in mind it is easier to judge and hate
than to love each other and find common ground

Fear spreads like wildfire . . .
and you always fear what you don’t understand

So doesn’t it make sense to be curious and empathic
in how we approach our differences?

Remember that where there is yin, there is yang
masculine energy lights the path toward yin’s darkness

Next time you find yourself sizing yourself up to someone else –
making a comparison about why your position is right,
and someone else’s is wrong

Or just putting yourself up on a pedestal by demonizing someone else
based on your belief that your way of living is preferred
and therefore should have dominion of another

Take a deep breath, and a break from that mind-set,
whilst just considering the opposite viewpoint for a moment . . .

Allow yourself to see the opposite side of the same coin
from both your head and your heart

This is how we move beyond us and them segregation,
transition into we consciousness, and brings balance to our Earth

See you up the trails,

Ari

A Buddha-Christ-like Carbon Footprint in the Park

The Winter Solstice arrives this week in the Northern Hemisphere
A Full Cold Moon on Christmas signifies a
birth of the coldest, darkest and longest nights of the year . . .

After that we will begin to coax back the light of masculine-yang

Paradoxically, our friends in the Southern Hemisphere experience peak light –
Where masculine-yang reaches its zenith on the Summer solstice . . .
And then a downhill run toward rising dark nights of feminine-yin

Like it or not, pain and suffering are part of life
But most of us want to be happy

So here we sit in a chair with paradoxical tension of opposites

Pain is inevitable, but suffering is a choice
Pain is a wound that hurts
Let yourself feel sad in your heart for this . . .

Our ancestors that have left this planet
frequently revisit us during a death cycle in Nature

Do you remember the Buddha’s God realized teachings on compassion in the park?

Become the courage to move deeper into your pain through a lens of compassion
Gently allow yourself to maintain a graceful and compassionate gaze of Deer

Happiness as a way of life is a real possibility
Sing in the whispering winds to the key of inner peace

Christmas is coming to signal the birth of Christ Consciousness
Might as well come down into your soul and Love one another

Because the gift of your presence here is worth receiving!

Remember that soap opera around your pain is of your own creation . . .
Just own it and move forward!

Onward up the trails,

Ari

Tracking Novel Adventures with Deer

Coming down from last week’s Full Beaver Moon and industrious productivity –
Perhaps leaves a feeling of energetic loss right about now

So many changes on our planet today
As one world dies another is being born

Might as well let the energy of Deer gently guide us through
these transformative transitions to feel safe in this unknown darkness

Look back at the time of Buddha for a moment . . .

Did he beat up on himself for any mistakes he might have made
after his legendary first teaching among deer in a park?

Meditation on Deer heightens sensitivity to the key of inner peace
Nature inspires us to unplug from emotional entanglements with life’s circumstances

Turn off the seductive technological buzz of what’s wrong in the world for a spell
And get outside and play and connect with the natural environment around you

Breathe in a deer’s gentle gaze after taking a cool drink from a crystalline stream
Then breathe out any negative energies that need to leave your being

Remember when our ancestors ventured out on spiritual hunts into the wild
where they followed Deer and were lured to mysterious adventures

Back then, there was an ancient wisdom in the power in letting go

What are you thankful for and what do you need to release and let go of?

Time to hear the crackle of conversational boundaries with others
and sit with that in discernment from your own inner thoughts and perceptions

After all, other people’s opinions really are not my business
and if I listen to their attached emotions then I will likely feel less lonely –
because I will realize that I am a part of a domestic partnership of shared humanity

Imagine all of us building a New Earth together by pouring a
practical foundation of empathy, gentleness or compassion for one another

Onward up the trails,

Ari