One cold morning I went out for a wild wander. The sun was shinning, melting ice slowly. I was walking in the direction of the sea, the white cliffs, the blue, when I noticed this frozen pond on the side of the road, that contained the shape of a foetus naturally drawn on the ice. A form in the early stages of development before it is born. I took a picture of that transient form about to melt and disappear, to remember it. Then I walked with it, sat with it, while listening to waves coming and going.
The movement of the waves contrasting with the still ice, in essence: Water. And this birth emerging, perhaps mine, emerging from the stillness of a pandemic and the movement of winds and waves, and also a 21 days of new depths in a winter meditation retreat, at home. Somehow a thought of essence emerged, through the sound of the sea, essence as a gift, the gift of distilling through things, of seeing with clarity, through people and beings, like an alchemist, to reach the essence of things - to see them as they are, in their true nature, in their soul essence.
The next day, I wake up with the full moon by my window. I sit there, waiting for the dawn, while tracking a dream that, amongst other things, had me in a field sowing seeds. Two words come together as if the moon is calling me, ‘Essence maker, essence maker!’ In that instant I realize this is my mythopoetic identity, my soul’s purpose, as Bill Plotkin described it, the soul as ecological, not only the purpose to serve other humans, but the soul that is revealed in the context of the more than human world. Yes, the moon reminds me of the first flower essence I was called to make, in the first full moon of the pandemic, here on this land, while I was being given information through the night, too precious to be forgotten, so I kept awaking and writing it down with heavy sleepy eyes, and an alert mind, attentively listening to the code.
These memories and insights, remind me how to plant and tend for the garden has been one of the most rewarding things I have done, and I notice, that it was the garden of the soul that somehow made me the ‘essence maker’. And then, I see it in all things, in all my makings, in my film and healing work too - someone described it as: “Essence-touching medicine”.
The day after the moon called me by my name, I started writing a new book about the Depths of Stillness, or perhaps I should say that this book started to be written through me.
As I received it, as a precious gift, I realized the preciousness of all things.
The hands. The tree. The moon. Myself.
Everything is precious.
We must appreciate everything.
To touch with utmost care.
To listen to the essence of everything.
Following the thread of Seagull to ‘focus on love’ this picture emerged. somehow an embodiment of love. A collage, with natural elements found in the garden, finds a shape on paper, inspired by a dream, in essence-maker simplicity…
During that healing, I felt present, the energy through my hands like water, a river, going through the rocks that were blocking the flow in that women’s soul, patiently smoothing the stone, slowly and deeply. I felt an enormous compassion and kindness for this person that I never met in person… next day, through the thread of a collective trauma healing group of women, I received this quote by Pema Chödrön:
‘Compassion is not a relationship between the healer and the wounded. It's a relationship between equals. Only when we know our darkness well can we be present with the darkness of others. Compassion becomes real when we recognise our shared humanity’
Sun prints. Japanese calligraphy (Ki, Chi). The garden of the soul.
"to be a wandering taoist was a great honour. Wandering taoists were monks who truly moved with the Tao. They had no roots or destination. Their purpose was only to learn and share their knowledge"