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astrophyllite

Astrophyllite

Key words:  Self-knowledge, realization of multidimensional self, self-acceptance, forgiveness, infusion of oneself with Light

Element:  Storm

Chakras:  All

The Oracle at Delphi instructed, “Know thyself,” and this is the essential message of Astrophyllite.  I refer to the Book of Stones by Robert Simmons and Naisha Ahsian for most of the following information, and encourage anyone interested to read the full passage on Astrophyllite.  

“[Astrophyllite] can reveal the hidden pattern of one’s divine blueprint, or life purpose, if one is willing to work with it awhile in meditation.  Another way to achieve this is to simply wear or carry the stone, then learn to pay close attention to the synchronicities in one’s everyday life.  Following the pattern of such ‘random’ events, one can discern the outline of what the Universe wants from us and for us.  Astrophyllite is both a magnet for these synchronicities and an aid to being more aware of their occurence and meaning.”  

“Being out of alignment with one’s inner purpose can cause all sorts of symptoms, such as boredom, depression, overeating, addictions, and so forth.  Astrophyllite can aid one in shedding such states, not as a direct remedy, but as an amplifier of one’s latent interest in the deeper and more significant purpose of one’s life.  …The complex [crystalline] structures and flashing reflections of Astrophyllite resonate with its deeper meaning – to shine a light on the mirror of consciousness, to illuminate the true self.”

“[It is] a powerful Storm element stone that activates the chakra column to become a channel for high-frequency Light energy.  It activates and connects the Soul Star chakra above the head and the Earthstar chakra below the feet.  In the connection of these two powerful etheric centers, all other chakras in the body are activated, charged and aligned.  Astrophyllite enables one to resonate with and radiate the full spectrum of electromagnetic energy that is the Light.  From the highest-frequency energy to the lowest, Astrophyllite reminds us that the entire spectrum of Light is necessary to our health and our spiritual growth. ” 

“Astrophyllite has the ability to direct Light into the darkest recesses of one’s being and experience.  It can help one perceive and understand one’s most buried and unacknowledged thoughts and feelings.  By bringing these shadow aspects of the self to conscious awareness, wholeness, self-acceptance and self-forgiveness can be achieved.  Astrophyllite is excellent for those who believe they are beyond redemption or salvation due to their ego investment in the shadow self.  It can help these individuals to perceive their inherent divinity, fully accepting and loving themselves, deciding to live their full potential. “

“Astrophyllite strengthens the energy field, acting as a natural protection against negative or harmful vibrations.  …[It] can mediate the effects of electromagnetic pollution – such as that produced by electronics, radio transmitters or cell towers – even as it assists the body in processing a broader range of electromagnetic energy.  It acts as a natural protection against radioactivity as well.”

“Astrophyllite can help one accept one’s shadow self and feel more whole and accepting of oneself.  It can give hope to those who fear the judgment of others or the Divine.  It assists one in finding Light in the darkest corners and in deciding to express one’s full Light in the world.  Astrophyllite allows one to face one’s darkest fears and reclaim one’s full power.”

“Astrophyllite is useful in supporting detoxification on an energetic or spiritual level.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~

Astrophyllite has always been one of my favorite pocket stones – probably because the piece I have is a rounded square:  perfect for turning over in my hands, and unintrusive in the back pocket of my jeans.  I experienced the power of this stone recently while working to identify the many roles I play in life.  There were roles affecting almost all of my chakras – from the Satisfier in my root up to the Protector in my third eye.  I needed to accept these roles and release them – even the new role of Wife I had just taken on!  Only my crown chakra wasn’t holding any roles – I had a reluctance towards divine connection, and, by the end of the session, I could feel the Light and energy of a Divine Presence flowing through me.  

In my day-to-day life, I had just been informed that all the bureaucratic hoops had been jumped through, and I was officially a full-time, permanent employee, per the United States Government (I had been operating under a contract as a graduate student for the last year in the library).  I was debating if I should commit myself to three years in exchange for student loan repayment – a deal I was not particularly keen on, but hesitant to dismiss.  Within a few days of my transition going through, a friend told me he was interested in helping me set up my business as a dowser and healer.  That same day – despite prior approval and activation – my government transition came tumbling down like a house of cards.  My contract ended in a few days, and it would be weeks before they could post a vacancy and rehire me.  It seems the Universe didn’t want me to get too comfortable.  I was researching Astrophyllite as this comedy of errors played out, and, much to my co-workers surprise, I didn’t get upset or start to freak out about how I would survive until the paychecks started coming again.  It might sound strange, but this unexpected time seems like a gift.  I now have an opportunity to knock out a lot of business and finance-related details I hadn’t had time to think about before.  I enjoy my day job, however, I have wanted to expand beyond the 9 to 5 grind for awhile now, but had yet to take any sort of leap towards doing so.  By looking at the synchronicities of several unrelated events in my life, I recognize the opportunity the Universe presented.  I now have the chance (and time) to create the foundation for my future endeavors long after this current governmental mess is resolved and I return to the library.  Astrophyllite helped me to see the lemonade I could easily make out of the lemons I was given!


the Rhodora

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-1882)

 

The Rhodora

On Being Asked Whence Is The Flower


 

In May, when sea-winds pierced our solitudes,

I found the fresh Rhodora in the woods,

Spreading its leafless blooms in a damp nook,

To please the desert and the sluggish brook.

The purple petals, fallen in the pool,

Made the black water with their beauty gay;

Here might the red-bird come his plumes to cool,

And court the flower that cheapens his array.

Rhodora!  if the sages ask thee why

This charm is wasted on the earth and sky,

Tell them, dear, that if eyes were made for seeing,

Then Beauty is its own excuse for being;

Why thou wert there, O rival of the rose!

I never thought to ask; I never knew;

But, in my simple ignorance suppose

The self-same Power that brought me there, brought you.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

While cleaning out what will eventually become my healing room, I came across a book of poetry that belonged to my grandmother.  It has been in our family for years, and is full of early American classics: Emerson, Thoreau, Wordsworth, Longfellow – even the Gettysburg Address.  Several pages still had Gram’s bookmarks in them, and I opened the first one to this lovely poem.  The last line really struck me, because, for as long as I can remember, semantics and a tendency to intellectualize faith has kept me from feeling any sort of connection to the Divine.  I became a religion major because I loved reading the texts and learning about many different aspects of people’s beliefs, but never felt comfortable with the Christianity I was raised in (despite Methodist churches in New England being little more than town meetings with coffee and cake after); I just didn’t buy a patriarchal, war-mongering, one-dimensional deity.  As of late, I’ve been releasing a lot of the hate and fear towards spiritual belief that had been blocking me from fully accepting my life’s purpose and the interconnectedness of nature, humans, the universe and god… the dreaded “g” word.  Some of these patterns did not start with this life, and have been carried through many incarnations, manifesting in different ways:  the effects rippling to many whom I came in contact with.  I wasn’t even fully aware of my disdain for the very word “god”, let alone “God”, and the overtly righteous tone of monotheism until I looked closer at my own shadows.  I feared and hated because I actually yearned for a connection.  The perceived absence of a divine presence in my life had created a lonliness that was so buried I was oblivious to the cause.  I could intellectualize about everything in the universe being broken down into smaller and smaller building blocks until our very existence simply became energy vibrating at a high frequency, but only recently was I able to take that scientific explanation and add the element of divinity.  We are all inherently divine.  There is no set of rules handed down from the mountain, sacrifices made in the temple, or other signs of obedience we must fulfil in order for this to be true.  It simply is.  Accepting this notion that we – all manner of plants, stones, rivers, finned, furry, four-legged, two-legged creatures – are beings of Light and love, connected and infused with the same web of energy, feels far more marvelous than years of cynicism and denial.  Everyone must come to this realization in their own time and by their own path – it isn’t a truth that is easily accepted for many, but, by starting small, by working to grow and develop spiritually, emotionally, mentally, and physically, such understanding can be reached.  I can safely say, it is well worth the journey.

~~~~~~~~~~~~

Ralph Waldo Emerson was one of several early American literary figures associated with the cultural movement that was formed in reaction to the rational, intellectualized assumptions about religion (among other reasons).  The “spiritual hunger” of New England at that time, along with more widely available non-Western scriptures, opened the door for a fresh perspective on religious truths.  Intuition, insight, and inspiration were soon considered gifts from a loving Divinity who gave them to mankind for a purpose, emphasizing the a priori conditions of knowledge regarding the unknowable character of ultimate reality over the empirical and material.  Much of Emerson’s poetry follows the principle that natural facts are symbols of spiritual facts, and the mystical unity of God’s love can be found throughout nature.

Emerson also said, 

“We will walk on our own feet; we will work with our own hands, we will speak with our own minds… A nation of men will for the first time exist, because each believes himself inspired by the Divine Soul which also inspires all men.”

Learn more about Transcendentalism.

Learn more about Emerson’s “The Rhodora”.

Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra

 

 

Listen to the mantra here.*

 

Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra

OM triyambakam yajāmahe

sugandhim pushtivardhanam,

urvārukamiva bandhanān

mrrityormokshiya māmrritāt.

(Rig Veda:  Mandala 7, Hymn 59, Verse 12)

 

 

Translation**:

We worship the Three-eyed one (Lord Shiva)

who is naturally fragrant, immensely merciful, and

who is the protector of the devotees.

Worshipping Him, may we be liberated from death for the sake of immortality,

just as the ripe cucumber easily separates itself from the binding stalk.

[By your Grace, let me be in the state of salvation and be saved from the clutches of fearful death.]

OR:

We worship the Father of the three worlds,

who emits the excellent fragrance which nourishes all.

As a cucumber is released from its bondage to the stem,

so may we be freed from Death to dwell in immortality.

 

The Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra, meaning Great Death-Conquering Mantra or Prayer of the Great Victor Over Death, has many names and forms, including the Rudra Mantra, Tryambakam Mantra, Mrita-Sanjivini Mantra, Moksha Mantra, and Markandeya Mantra.  Along with the Gayatri Mantra, it is probably the most chanted and highest revered of all the mantras in Hinduism.  Addressed to Lord Shiva, it is believed to generate divine vibrations that ward of negative energies and evil forces, creating a powerful protective shield around the chanter, a veritable divine armor which guards against accidents and misfortunes of every kind.  It rejuvenates us, pulsating through every cell and molecule in our body, tearing away the veil of ignorance, and igniting a fire within us that consumes negativity, purifying our entire system.  Many believe this centuries old mantra can heal diseases declared incurable, and bestows health, long life, peace, prosperity, and contentment.  We evoke Shiva within, who removes the fear of death, liberating us from the cycle of death and rebirth and connecting us to our own inner divinity.

Depending on which text you read, there are several accounts regarding the origins of this mantra.  The Puranas tell the story of a childless sage, Mrikandu, and his wife, Marudvati, who had gained great spiritual knowledge and wisdom.  Through their penance and meditation on their desire to have a child, Lord Shiva was pleased and blessed them with a boon, offering them a divine son who would only live sixteen years, or a foolish son who would live one hundred years.  Shiva knew their choice, and was not surprised when they chose the divine child, whom they named Markandeya.  By the time the boy was eight, he knew all of the holy scriptures and his sagely parents taught him the tools to attain spiritual knowledge, which he performed with great devotion.  They did not tell him about the shortness of his life, but, as his sixteenth year approached, their sadness exposed what Lord Shiva had revealed.  On the day of his sixteenth birthday, Markandeya took sanctuary in a Shiva temple, and began his meditations opposite a Shiva Lingam.  When the messengers of Yama, Lord of Death, arrived to take him away and began to pull the prana out of his body, the boy embraced the holy Lingam and, full of devotion, burst into the Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra.  The messengers could not complete their task and returned to their Lord, who went himself to the temple, urging Markandeya to come willingly and follow the natural laws of life and death.  The boy tightened his grip around the Shiva Lingam, and surrendered himself to its protection.  Yama threw His noose around the nose of the boy to collect him, but threw it too far and it encircled the Lingam as well.  Dwelling in the image, Lord Shiva split the Lingam in his rage and appeared, killing Yama with His foot for encroaching on His authority.  Although Yama had no jurisdiction to throw the noose over Him, the other Gods implored Lord Shiva to bring Yama back to life, lest the order of the universe be upset by His death.  Shiva complied, and then turned to Markandeya and declared, “It is true that your karma decrees you must die by the age of sixteen.  However, there are still a few minutes left before you reach your sixteenth birthday, therefore, I stop your aging process at this very moment.  You shall not get any older, thus, death may never claim you.”  Shiva blessed Markandeya to become the ever-living master of the Himalayas, and a powerful spiritual discipline to promote healing was born.

 

Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra in its original sanskrit.

Maha Mrityunjaya Mantra in its original Sanskrit.

*There is an urban legend attributing this to the Dalai Lama, however, it is actually a Dutch man named Hein Braat, who is self-taught and performs traditional chants with his own unique character.  I find his voice addictive and strikingly beautiful and feel compelled to suggest you buy his CDs because the sound quality is much better and he is an artist deserving of your patronage.

**An exact translation of the Vedic mantras is next to impossible, so we rely on the interpretations from spiritual, sacrificial, physiological, and sociological perspectives, provided by venerable Swamis and Yogis over the centuries. Understanding the words is important to make the repetitions meaningful, so here are two word-by-word translations of the Sanskrit.

Trying to explain this in one post is like diluting Shakespeare to fridge magnets:  it’s fine if you want to whet your whistle, or are already familiar with the material, but it’s probably not enough to make you an authority on the subject.  My main purpose in presenting this system of organization is to elucidate my own progress working with it, and to provide a starting point for others seeking a framework to begin their own healing processes.

The Medicine Wheel, or Sacred Hoop, is common to many native (including Celtic) traditions, representing the universe and the individual journey we all must take to become fully human.  Colors, animals, and symbolism vary from person to person, dependent on specific teachings and visions.  There is no wrong way to create a Medicine Wheel; its teachings are myriad and its purpose is to aid our search of universal knowledge.  It is a map that guides us so that we can establish a deeper relationship with ourselves while also connecting us to the larger community.  

There are physical manifestations of this spiritual energy, such as the Big Horn Medicine Wheel in Wyoming, which was created as a ceremonial space, but it also exists as a metaphor for life, and the endless series of cycles in our days, seasons, and the process of growing and evolving as spiritual beings.  The Medicine Wheel allows us to see where we are based on the choices we’ve made and how to learn from these experiences, so we are better equipped to move forward with our own healing, feeling a deeper sense of connection, and ultimately benefiting all of mankind.

I’ll delve deeper into each direction in later posts, but here is a little appetizer:

  • The winds of the South teach us to shed the past the way the Serpent sheds her skin.  We must let go of ideas, imprints, programs, and other wounds so that we can then experience a rebirth, allowing us to then fill the void with healing, compassion, love, and our lost power.
  • The winds of the West teach us how to heal and become luminous warriors, protected by Mother Jaguar.  We step beyond our fear, and learn the way of peace, to live impeccably upon the Earth.
  • The winds of the North, Hummingbird, bring us wisdom from Grandmothers and Grandfathers, the Ancient Ones.  We are not alone in our endeavors, and we honor those who have come before us, and those who will come after us.
  • The winds of the East teach us to fly with the Eagle, Condor, showing us the world as we have never seen it before, opening our eyes to the bigger picture (literally, a bird’s eye view!).
  • Mother Earth nourishes and grounds us, in all that we endeavor, and connects us to all of our relations, whether they are stone, plant, finned, furred, four-legged, or two-legged.
  • Father Sun, Grandmother Moon, and the Star Nations shine their light on us, guiding and helping us connect with the Great Spirit, the unnamable One, the infinite divine.  

As I mentioned before, these archetypes are not set in stone – they act as a mirror, showing us what we need to know about ourselves in relation to the entire universe.  There are many ways to work with this tool, and I encourage you to read Shaman Healer Sage by Alberto Villoldo for a deeper treatment of these concepts.

The very first time I met Faith, she asked, “Do you think you’re a healer?”  My intuition said, “Yes!” but what came out of my mouth was, “No, um… I don’t know.”  I did know, but instead of saying that, my brain decided it wouldn’t be prudent to admit it, and I might sound like a weirdo to this person I had just met.  I had a beloved English teacher who used to refer to this as the “Editor Voice”.  He used to always tell us, “Just write.  Don’t listen to that little voice telling you it’s bad or wrong.  Listen to the other voice telling the story and get it onto paper.”  This was a case of choosing the right voice.

After an amazing wedding and honeymoon, I went to go see Faith again.  She had helped me earlier when I wanted to create sacred space for the wedding, and I was positive there was a lot I could learn from her.  Drew and I knew we wanted to start a family, and I wasn’t going to sit around waiting to get preggers before making sure all aspects of my being were ready.  I wanted to be proactive in my preparation.  Unaware of the medical history on my father’s side of the family, I knew the maternal side was plagued with reproductive and other health issues, including vaginal, testicular, and breast cancer, polyps and growths, and multiple sclerosis – and that’s only going back three generations!  I wanted to clear the energetic imprints in my family that were causing these ailments, not only for my own health, but for the future health of any children.  I want them to inherit their father’s green eyes and their mother’s cheekbones – not her messed up ovaries.  

Our first session was devoted mainly to the physical – my pelvic bowl (the Seat of the Soul, she calls it) was very tight, and this would need to be able to shift to carry a child with greater ease.  Stretching my psoas would assist in loosening that.  Posture-wise, for as long as I could remember, my head had always jutted forward, and I could never quite figure out how to stand up straight so that it felt AND looked right.  Faith took one look at me and recognized the problem:   I was locking my knees.  As a result, my entire body was leaning backwards; my head was tipping forward in an attempt to keep me balanced.  A few simple steps, and my entire posture changed (bend the knees, balance the weight evenly on my feet, zip up the dive suit, catch the ball and cradle it, open the window, elbows present!).  In addition, I had been walking on the outsides of my feet.  I have distinct memories of being told I had weak ankles as a child from the way they leaned in.  Years of compensating for that perceived weakness had actually weakened me.  By focusing on using my entire foot correctly with each step, as well as keeping my body in this new and improved alignment, I immediately noticed a difference.  I felt more grounded, more connected with the Earth, and stronger as I walked.  I felt almost regal standing up straight with my feet firmly on the ground.  Over the next week, my lower back began to frequently pop and adjust, and my pelvic bowl became looser.  Never having been very flexible (despite being double jointed), this new mobility in my hips allowed me to finally touch my toes without strain.  Amazing!

Faith and I decided that the next step was to work with the Medicine Wheel, both to facilitate my own healing, and also to teach me how to assist others in the way she was helping me.  My dowsing already gave me a sense of trust in my own intuition, and with some guidance, I could learn to develop my senses further.  I wanted to release energetic blocks, as well as old ideas and habits that were no longer serving me and didn’t allow me to fulfill my potential in all aspects of my life.  We would begin by working with the South, and the shedding power of the Serpent.

There is no limit to the information the universe can provide to you when you dowse wisely and with respect.  Everything from the inane day-to-day quagmires to the looming questions surrounding the nature of our existence can be answered.  Don’t forget dowsing 101:  ask permission, word your questions carefully, and say thank you after.  Everything below can be dowsed with a pendulum, but L-rods may be easier for locating energy lines or lost objects.

 

Here are a few suggestions to try for yourself:

  • Locate lost objects, including keys, jewelry, wallets, anything.  Start with general questions (Are my keys currently in my house?) and move to more specific (Are my keys under the living room couch?).  Using an L-rod, you can start with general yes or no questions, and then ask to be guided in the direction of the lost object.  You can have a friend help by hiding specific objects and then going on a treasure hunt!
  • What colors should you paint the walls of your house or office?  Should you do stripes, or texture?  Wallpaper?
  • Supper time: Yum.  At the market, dowse which produce (both the type and the specific piece) is the healthiest and most beneficial for you to buy?  What will go best with it in a meal?  How should you prepare it, and which spices should you use?
  • Buying a car?  Which make and model will serve you for the highest good?  Are there any electrical, mechanical, or aesthetic problems that need to be fixed?  What is a fair price to pay?  (For situations like this, you may want to use a chart, create your own chart, or use a picture to answer more than just yes-or-no questions.)
  • Having trouble sleeping?  Dowse for a vein of water under your bed, or detrimental energy lines that may be affecting you.  If you find some, ask if these energies are willing to become beneficial, so that you, or anyone else who sleeps there, will not suffer from the effects.  Water, energy, and the Earth in general will be very accommodating if only you ask!  (First, ask permission.  Treat nature like a good friend, and ask if the energy is able, as well as willing to change from detrimental to beneficial.  If no, seek help or try again later.  If yes, ask that the line shift its energy from detrimental to beneficial, and that it be done with divine compassion, for the greatest good of the universe, and for the duration of the time people live in the house.  It may take a few moments for this to be accomplished, and you may want to use your pendulum to tell you when the shift is complete.  Dowse again for detrimental energy lines in the same spot to check your work.)  Practice locating other energy lines exist in your home and garden – be sure to specify if you are seeking beneficial, detrimental, or all energy lines.  Map them out and see if a pattern emerges.
  • Dowse the energy from electronic devices: your cell phone, microwave, computer, tv, and more all have electromagnetic fields.  Is the energy beneficial or detrimental?  Can you change the detrimental to beneficial?
  • Plants have many things to discover through dowsing.  Choose a house plant or one in your garden.  Is it for the highest good to be in its current location?  Does it need water?  How big is its auric field?  If you speak kindly to it, does its aura grow or shrink?  What about if you speak harsh words and insults?  Does the same apply if you only think kind or cruel thoughts?  Similar experiments have been conducted on people, plants, and even on water, and it is amazing to see the effects of our intentions.  Try asking similar questions to a friend and observe what happens to their own auric field (they may need watering).
  • Where should you hang a piece of artwork?  Is it in the right room, on the right wall, at the right height for the highest good?  Dowsing the energies inherent in photographs and objects is something that will be covered in greater depth in a later post, but continue to explore the auric field of the work and how energy is moving through it.
  • Similar to plant and art location, dowse the best positions for furniture in your home or office.
  • Dowse the location of the door in a tree.  If you’re not sure what I’m talking about, try it, and see what happens.
  • What color should you wear today?  Which items of clothing specifically – shirt, shoes, handbag, accessories?
  • Which vitamins does your body need today?  What dose will be best for you?  Is there something you should avoid? (Although I fully trust my own dowsing to steer me in the right direction, please check with a medical professional before making any rash decisions about medications.)
  • Is there water on Jupiter?
  • Dowse your spirit guides, power animals, or past lives.  Please be sure to only communicate with beneficial entities, and, for good measure, please invoke sacred space, or a golden ring of protection that extends around you ten miles in every direction before beginning.  This may sound silly, but please take it seriously – especially for beginners – because if there are detrimental entities or separates present, they may attach themselves to you or interfere with your dowsing in some other way.  Consider it a spiritual immune system, and feel free to invoke it any time you are dowsing, or when you are in a situation surrounded by negative people.  Simply ask Archangel Michael, a spirit guide, the Divine, or whoever you feel comfortable with, to surround you with a golden ring of protection that will prevent psychic attacks from harming you, as well as anything negative you may inadvertently send out from affecting others.

The list of possibilities is infinite, so explore and be creative.  Once again, remember to ask permission and say thank you, and if you are told it is not the right time to ask something, heed the answer and move on to another topic.  If you’re having trouble, don’t get frustrated.  Look over a few dowsing tips, and when in doubt, ask!  Am I correct?  Is this for the highest good?  Have I forgotten to ask something?  Do I need to be more specific?  Respect for this gift, trust in yourself, and practice will allow you to develop your dowsing abilities for the highest good in your own life and for the universe.

Good luck, and good dowsing.

Ancient Lenape Legend tells of when Snow Spirit entered the World.  The animals soon began to freeze, and all would perish if something was not done.  They decided to send a messenger to Kijiamuh Ka’ong, the Creator Who Creates By Thinking What Will Be, to ask him to think the world warm again so that Snow Spirit would leave them in peace.  Rainbow Crow, the most beautiful of all the birds, with shimmering feathers of rainbow hues and an enchanting singing voice, was thus chosen to go.

It was a difficult journey, and he flew upward into the heavens, beyond the sun and moon, above even the stars.  When Rainbow Crow reached the Holy Place, he called out to the Creator, but received no answer, so he began to sing his most beautiful song.  The Creator was drawn from his thoughts by the lovely sound, and greeted Rainbow Crow kindly, asking what gift he could give the noble bird in exchange for his song.  Rainbow Crow asked the Creator to un-think the snow, so that the animals of Earth would not be buried and freeze to death, but the Creator told him that the snow and the ice had spirits of their own and could not be destroyed. 

“You will not freeze,” the Creator reassured him, “For I will think of Fire, something that will warm all creatures during cold times.”

The Creator stuck a large stick into the sun.  The end blazed with a glowing fire that burned brightly and gave off heat. Handing Rainbow Crow the cool end of the stick, he told him to hurry back to Earth before it could completely burn up. 

Rainbow Crow thanked the Creator, and flew as fast as he could.  As he descended, the Fire grew hot as it came closer to his feathers, and soon his whole body was black with soot.  The smoke and heat got into his throat, strangling his beautiful singing voice.  By the time Rainbow Crow landed among the freezing cold animals of Earth, he was black as tar and could only Caw instead of sing.  He delivered Fire to the animals, which warmed them and rescued the littlest animals from the snow drifts where they lay buried. 

It was a time of rejoicing, for Fire had come to Earth, but Rainbow Crow sat apart, saddened by his dull, ugly feathers and his rasping voice.  He felt the touch of wind on his face and saw the Creator walking toward him. 

“Do not be sad, Rainbow Crow”, the Creator said.  “All animals will honor you for the sacrifice you made for them.  And when the people come, they will not hunt you, for I have made your flesh taste of smoke so that it is no good to eat, and your black feathers and hoarse voice will prevent man from putting you  into a cage to sing for him.  You will be free.”

Then the Creator pointed to Rainbow Crow’s black feathers, and Rainbow Crow saw the dull feathers become shiny, and inside each one he could see all the colors of the rainbow.  “This will remind everyone who sees you of the service you have been to your people,” he said, “and the sacrifice you made that saved them all.”

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Crow is a harbinger of change; she announces newness on the horizon.  Crows are the Sentinels, known for their tendency to observe all around them and alert other crows of danger, which can teach us to be watchful about what we believe and our automatic judgments of others, and to test our habitual ideas about reality against a more universal standard.  They have been given the task of Messenger of the Ancestors, and follow the pattern to observe, make note, translate, and share.  Crow reminds us to learn to trust our intuition and personal integrity, to create our own standards, and to know ourselves beyond the limitations of one-dimensional thinking and laws. 

Crow represents the elements of change in our lives, allowing us to simultaneously see the past, present, and future, and merging the dualities of darkness and light, of our inner and outer Beings.  In Mayan culture, the Crow is a privileged being because it is cross-eyed, seeing both sides of reality at once.  By indicating the need to find balance and to stay in the present, Crow will bring us the ability to release past beliefs.  Those who have Crow by her side have the role of carrying souls lost in pain, denial, bitterness or ill intent, into the light of forgiveness and self-awareness.  To assist in this process, Crow Souls have been blessed with the ability of keen perception, to see right to the core of their own Self.  Whether this is turned within to gain understanding of oneself, or reflected back as a mirror to others so they may know themselves, this is a beautiful gift.

Crow Souls often feel disconnected early in life and are seeking connection.  Communication is an integral part of their path, and they are here to express the depth of what they feel, to invoke understanding and inspire others to reach for the light within them so that true healing may occur.  Yet Crow Soul is one who struggles to find and define herself, spending much time gradually coming to an understanding and embracing of all the facets that make up their Personality, Mind, and Soul.  Uncovering the “shadows” within ourselves – the areas that represent our greatest lessons and opportunities for growth – and then working to understand and integrate them, allows the soul to mirror Rainbow Crow’s journey.  Dwelling in two worlds, earth and sky, Crow teaches us how to shed the feelings of disconnect that exist throughout our physical lives as we move toward deeper levels of understanding, and then to share this insight with others through our words.  

When Crow came to me, I was working to expand my expression.  I wanted to release patterns of not expressing love, of not communicating emotions and thoughts out of fear, which, in turn, had been mirrored in relationships where love and truth had not been fully expressed back to me.  I was seeking interconnectedness.  Crow is an omen of transformation, and a signal to be mindful.  Learn from the past and move on; there is no longer a need to fear expression, but to recognize the divine purpose of all things.  It is time to look beyond my present range of vision, recognize the gifts I have been given that I have not yet developed, and help others step out from the darkness and into the light of healing.