Holy Days. Spring. Inspiration.
For me, Easter has come to mean new beginnings.
My childhood winters in the US Midwest were long. Once Christmas had past it was mostly just snowy, drizzly, dreary days and long nights. Nearly half the year spent under cloud-cover, seeing your breath when you talk, waking up for school in the cold dark.
Daylight would arrive each morning a little sooner...and a little sooner until one day, like a sunrise blast over the horizon, the entire world felt different.
The world looked different.
Life changed in an instant.
They say that when Jesus came out of the tomb, not all of his friends recognized him at first. He had changed.
That makes sense to me.
Within the span of the three new moon days/nights, Jesus had traversed into the underworld, ascended into heaven, and returned to solid Earth. It stands to reason, things would have been a little different.
Per usual, Jesus provides a model for the Soul Artist who seeks to live their most meaningful life.
Because this has been a year.
In the span of just over 365, we have certainly traversed some new territory. For some it was a deep-dive into the underworld–the "Dark Night of the Soul." Others found illumination of their shadows. There have been challenges to be certain, and hardship provides opportunity for transformation.
What about you? How have you changed?
Do you feel yourself cycling through into something new?
Today, I remember my favorite childhood Easter dress. I remember styling my hair and polishing my shoes and stepping into the church pew to hear the Sunday sermon.
There was excitement in the air.
After the service (and oh! the singing) the children were ushered out into the warm and radiant sunshine for an egg hunt on the lawn. I was bigger then. I followed behind the smaller ones. Something new was stirring.
As I walked the perimeter of the church yard, I spotted a little nest nestled beneath a tree. It was crooked and disheveled as if it had fallen from the branches. But there were three tiny eggs inside. I sat down to get a closer look.
It was a Soul Artist moment.
On the soft cool ground, under the brilliant blast of the Easter sun, I had a new understanding about the cycles of change (samsara in Sanskrit). It is all happening. Seasons. Moons. Days. Years. Thoughts. Life.
...and it is always coldest, darkest just before the dawn.
It was something like that, anyway, elusive and curiously peaceful as I sat awestruck with wonder beside that little broken nest. Birds sang everywhere above me. The breeze blew the style out of my curls. And the sun was there.
I let the littler ones look for the Easter eggs. I had already discovered mine.
Walking back to find my mother I felt like I had grown.
I wondered if she would recognize me.
Motherhood. Poetry. Spring.
...then sometimes I am eight
and we stay up really late, past our bedtimes listening to records in the loft. Time is our kitten and the moonlight is soft...
and it’s finally Spring after a year of masking our faces and staying away from certain places and I am right where eight is.
I am where we get lost on purpose. We hide and then resurface. You are there and I am there and we are both nowhere else.
We dance the ancient Dragon Dance from the Empire of the Sun. It’s the graceful dance. The sacred one. The one we just made up for fun...and you are my best friend.
We watch the vinyl spin. Flip it over and play it again. We spin and spin and spin and spin...until we fall onto the pillow fort we built, drenched in the water that we spilt.
I am soaking it all in.
Because when you’re eight, there is nowhere but the middle. You’re a big girl...and still little.
You don’t need anyone to tell you what to wear.
You can pack your own bag. You can brush your own hair. But you still always want your mama there.
And so for right now, I am right here-right where eight is.
About The Author
R.R. Shakti, PhD
Founding teacher of Inner Power Yoga®, Shakti is a Contemplative Mythologist, ritual facilitator, and writer who presents a Tantrik approach to personal empowerment and social action. Through contemplative story-telling and mind/body practices, she offers a vision of deep peace and radical freedom.
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