Tag Archives: stars

Year of self-compassion #51 #repeat

Usually by this time in the year I have started to discern what the next year’s blog theme will be and others have noticed this as well and are providing advice and suggestions. This phenomena is letting me know that I have readers, that it is OK to offer me advice, that I might be open to suggestions, that perhaps I don’t yet know what to decide – all of these are true. In the listening I am noticing a theme around making another year of self-compassion might be useful. I am also noticing that others are reflecting on the ways they may or may not be kind to themselves and how some of my words might evoke a response or a memory or perhaps a pondering into the future as well. This is quite fascinating to me. I only really write for myself and part of my accountability is to put my posts into the world and in doing so join my humanity with others. The experience of being human may resonate with others of my species.

And so it came to pass that as the summer solstice arrived, I found myself at the Waging Peace exhibition at MOD (Museum of Design) in Adelaide this week. I was given a quick personal tour by the Director and now must go back and soak it all in. It is the perfect exhibition for this season where we make room for a peacemaker to arrive in our hearts, in the back shed where the animals rest, take shelter and feed, where we travel to ancestral lands and reconnect with our heritage, where we gather under stars and look to the heavens for signs of hope and instruction on how to live, where we subject ourselves to border crossings and arrive pregnant with possibilities. This day is also known as “founders day” in my family, the day my parents married in a little town on the edge of the Gulf, saltwater people both, young and full of promise and who within the year would be welcoming me into the fold. Travelling under a wandering star as the song from Paint Your Wagon goes, became part of the family narrative as well and when I saw my own brood scattered across the planet, it should come as no surprise to me. While none of them will be getting on donkeys or planes to come home this year, there will be the aid of technology and satellites and magi created moments to connect us with voice and vision.

Within 36 hours of the last of the Christmas Day cherries being swallowed and slurped, I will be jettisoning off to the other side of the world for a short trip to connect into my non-biological family. One has called to me with an irresistible invitation to come and see snow falling on a vertical city to be with her while we watch the lights twinkle and see the sun set early while the sun rises on my home. This generosity comes from the heart, from recognising the hole in my heart, and from the shared stories of joy, grief, movement and being still. It will be a chance to reconnect with our common story. I have sent word to stock up on tissues and champagne, to find places for me to be still and to be distracted. The getting there will have its own pilgrimage of border crossings, although no donkeys will be with me, there will be a backpack, as I can’t seem to leave home without one of those. The stars will offer up a map to me, a guide and perhaps signs for in this other hemisphere there are different celestial stories in the sky.

Arriving as I will a week or so after the days are getting shorter here and longer there, this may well be an aid to reminding me that the planet tilts and it orbits around the sun. My life revolves and is bathed in light across the course of a year with various amounts of intensity depending on how far I am from the source of that light. My life is seasonal and I have learnt a lot this year of what it means to be thrown off the axis into a different kind of orbit, it has been my ecological and molecular experience of personal climate change – tsunamis, wild winds, floods and droughts.

I am going to be looking for signs in the skies, to be surrounded by angels singing to me in celestial harmony, to be welcomed by an inn-keeper who has found a place for me to lay my weary head, to find a way to come home to myself in a strange land and to wage peace on myself.

I am no closer to arriving at a decision on what this blog will focus on in the coming year, but as the axis seems to be coming to some kind of stillness, maybe inviting me to revolve around self-compassion again? Maybe it is time for me to wage peace? Another instruction that came my way this week was the information that it was fifty years ago that we saw the Earth rise from Apollo 8 catching a glimpse of what it might mean, for us to rise and fall, and for us, to rotate and tilt.

Next year could not be like this one, and perhaps with a bit of light and intentionality of holding to a steady rotation to go around the sun again, I will discover “… fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains will repeat the sounding joy” our beautiful planet delivers to me in the people and places this pilgrim encounters.

Promises to Tomorrow #9 Stardust

Through the window of my bedroom I see Orion’s belt move across the sky on the last day of summer, the every evening reminder of our inheritance and our legacy – we are stardust.

The constant evolution from the big bang in our bodies is aching to transform our hearts and minds too. It is a story so big we can barely contain it, yet our body’s contain it and all of creation, past and to come is passing through us, pulsating in our veins and echoing in the dynamic dance of all living things. The rocks and stones themselves shout out Alleluia, and who hasn’t looked to the skies and seen beauty or to a wilderness landscape and taken a deep breath and let it out with a satisfied sigh?

What if we always acted from this knowledge that we are stardust, how would we live differently? The children’s author Elin Kelsey invites us to blow kisses so we can spread pollen and to notice we shed our hair seasonally just like the leaves on the trees. She invites us to deepen our knowledge and connection with all of nature. Joni Mitchell was right we are stardust, we are carbon, we got to get ourselves back to the garden. She was on her way to a farm to sing, dance and play in what become an acclaimed act of resistance party with the elements of rain, sweat, blood and more than a few tears between the riffs and beating drums. What party are you going too? Are you turning bombers into butterflies? I saw Banksy has opened a hotel on the West Bank and his images are doing just that turning Palestine considered by some including Banksy, the world’s largest open prison.

The hotel is in Bethlehem and I wonder how long it will take for there to be no room at the inn? There was a star in that story too. We are stardust is a poetic metaphor. We are stardust is truth from physics. We are breathing in and out the past and the future, whether we are complicit or understand, this act of creation goes on without our consent and mostly without our knowledge, but what if we did know, understand … remember?

Knowing we are stardust is a reminder of our common start in the sky and our common destination while we travel on our common planet. We do need to get back to the garden, to find ways of beautifying walls with messages of love and alternate ways of being, and to find ways of not building the walls in the first place.

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Banky’s Bethlehem images are alternative futures, glimpses into what might be possible from little girls frisking soldiers and pillow fights instead of guns drawn. From the place where a star hovered over head to bring news of salvation to a people occupied, so too does a new inn offer possibilities.

We are stardust and the stars are all around us, twinkling and glowing in the bodies we connect with, in the nature we are refreshed by, in the crashing of tectonic plates under the sea, in the cacophony of the pink galahs arriving for their evening conference, in my heart beat and the salty tears that are as salty as the ocean

My promise to tomorrow is to sing more of stardust, to notice more golden moments and to find myself in the garden more often. There is always more stardust to celebrate and be found in every breath. I will blow more kisses as my sacred stardust duty.

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We are Stardust – created by children at Adelaide Writers Week 4 March 2017

Woodstock

by Joni Mitchell

I came upon a child of God
He was walking along the road
And I asked him where are you going
And this he told me
I’m going on down to Yasgur’s farm
I’m going to join in a rock ‘n’ roll band
I’m going to camp out on the land
I’m going to try an’ get my soul free

We are stardust
We are golden
And we’ve got to get ourselves
Back to the garden

Then can I walk beside you
I have come here to lose the smog
And I feel to be a cog in something turning
Well maybe it is just the time of year
Or maybe it’s the time of man
I don’t know who I am
But you know life is for learning

We are stardust
We are golden
And we’ve got to get ourselves
Back to the garden

By the time we got to Woodstock
We were half a million strong
And everywhere there was song and celebration
And I dreamed I saw the bombers
Riding shotgun in the sky
And they were turning into butterflies
Above our nation

We are stardust
Billion year old carbon
We are golden
Caught in the devil’s bargain
And we’ve got to get ourselves
back to the garden

© Siquomb Publishing Company
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