Leaving civilization behind
we embarked down a lightly worn path into the woods.
The trail began as a soggy, muddy gentle walk through a young curtain of cedar saplings
and hopeful firs tracing our shoulders welcoming us with their gentle greeting.
Crossing creeks and streams that cut through the mud like a warm knife in butter, we entered into the more mature forest. Adolescent and maturing evergreens cascading down a moss laden hill side, a gateway into another world, where fairies must dwell.
This world old as time yet the life was young, fertile and abundant, Spanish moss dripping off the branches of coniferous trees each one with its own unique medicine and footprint in the collective mosaic that enveloped us into the fairy land created from dreams.
Pausing to receive the beauty that was presenting herself to us, I looked around to see an abundance of life where death had occurred, a gentle reminder that death gives way to new growth.
A river gently flowing down a path of well worn rocks carved way for new life to receive the nourishing waters of the land. Fallen trees lay ground for the nursing of young saplings to carve their own unique footprint into the ecosystem.
Trees covered in fungi and other living organisms and life forms, bustling with fresh hope and possibilities.
We traversed down the hill side and along the trail to a cliff's edge, approaching steep traverse down the mud.
Carefully descending down the side of the mountain the powerful river that etches her lifeforce onto the land
was singing us into canyon below.
Goat scaling, the steep path we found foot holds on old roots and well stabilized ancient stones,
to ensure that we maintained complete presence and awareness of our surroundings so we too,
could walk as one with the land and not fall as a foreigner to the challenging landscape.
Climbing over an old cedar at the bottom of the hill,
we came upon the rushing waters that were calling us forth from above.
Stepping out into the canyon was nothing short of entering through the gates of heaven.
The rain's warm droplets splashed on our skin as the sheer energy of the river
danced upon my face with a cool breeze of the glacier flow from above.
Entering the valley, we were greeted by a powerful waterfall, cascading over a 3 tier
well worn granite slab that stood strong, towering tall a few hundred feet up,
I marveled at its beauty that was second to none of the magical falls I have been to in my life.
Following the water down from the cliff, it flowed fiercely ledge upon ledge,
until it landed in a massive pool below.
Coming into what would look similar to a shield like shape from the hawks perspective.
Two slightly angular sides connecting with the curvature that forms the basin.
Dammed on one side with multiple large boulders and on the other side an ancient grandfather tree,
as the waterfall dropped into the point of the shield.
From our perspective the pool created what appeared to be momentary stillness of the water.
A glass lake, rippling from the falls and the rain dancing upon its surface
held by the well worn earth, sang us a thousand songs.
Within the ancient heart of this still strong and purposeful grandfather tree,
lay locked countless secrets and the profoundest treasures of wisdom from the ancient forest.
Over time the pressure of the water had given way to multiple channels and funnels,
through the stones and under the tree. Splitting the pool into two individual rivers, flowing from the source as fed by the falls.
Two serpents weaving through the canyon, reflecting back to us the double helix of our own DNA,
the building blocks of life, each strand containing information for the whole.
Nestled in the middle of the two rivers, lay a huge boulder that had fallen and traversed the valley centuries ago.
I called this bounder Purification Rock.
A top the rock lay a thick rug of fertile soil and moss, this boulder had birthed it's own micro ecosystem,
growing young saplings and small plants scattered across the tiny island.
Resting on top of the Purification Rock was a hand built Cedar wood burning barrel sauna.
The path up to it, equally as challenging as the path from which we had just come.
We scaled up the slippery slope to the entrance of the lodge, turning now to look at the beauty of the valley
which had called us to her receive her medicine, we could see the whole canyon from Purification Rock.
Opposite to the falls, with the sauna in-between, was a jagged geometric, angularly chiseled cathedral of stone.
So large it took up most of my visual field. Towering across from where the two rivers,
formed their own waterfalls, cascading hundreds of feet down to the canyon below.
On either side of the falls were trees blanketed so thickly in Spanish Moss that they looked
like animated lime green / earth yellow Weeping Willows draping above the water's edge.
Here we were, in a plateau, between two sets of falls well over 200' each,
entering a sauna on a rock nestled between two rivers, surrounded by tress covered in moss
and thousands of other microorganisms and life forms.
I lit the fire to prepare the sauna for purification, similar to a traditional sweat lodge,
with clear intentions and an open heart, the sweat becomes a ceremony of the elements.
Merging fire and air (steam) - traditionally represented as red and white in the Celtic wheel.
Representing the basic colors of the primal.
Red, blood, fire and iron; white milk, bone and ash.
With the fire started, we went back to the river to bathe in the cold glacier waters,
and alchemize with the earth and waters that guided us here.
Bringing together all elements to receive the healing of this sacred space.
Submerging my naked body in the icy waters, dropped into my breath and came into
presence and awareness as I lost all sense of self and other, merging with the spirits and energy of the land.
In that moment, I was able to surrender into her waters and receive the medicine of the land.
Meditating with the falls, I could feel the strength of the granite rock face.
Equally holding a strong container and offering direction to the chaotic flow of water above -
as it welcomed the sheer force of energy to shape it and etch her uniqueness into the rocks existence.
The masculine (the rock / earth), creating the container, strong, anchored and resilient to the
enormous force of the feminine water that carves her way from the mountain top to the ocean.
The feminine is equally being contained and shaped, as she allows her flow to take place naturally
carving into the earth AND being held by the earth. The fullest expression of the energy that exists,
yet alchemizing and merging with the container that gives her the structure to do so.
When the force is too much or wears away at one area too long,
that stone breaks away and becomes part of the ever changing and evolving topography of the valley,
to perhaps one day become a Purification Rock nestled between two rivers.
I received this message from the land and asked myself,
where can my masculine strengthen greater to allow for more
freedom of expression of the feminine to emerge.
Where do I feel the pressure and fractures that will give way if they are not nurtured?
Where can I allow that flow to shape my consciousness deeper into my knowingness of the strength of my container?
The feminine is wild and unpredictable in it's nature, it brings force through which invites the
cycles of life and death to continue. Equally as important to the flow of her creation,
is the strength of the masculine container that gives direction and purpose to the ecosystem.
Rich minerals from the ice melting above, carried downstream, earth giving-way to saturate the roots of the forest
on the river's edge, carrying those minerals through the earth and dispersing them amongst the other trees,
roots interconnected with the whole forest floor.
Balance in both creates balance in the whole and vise versa.
The eco-system continually creating and destroying and creating again, to grow and evolve -
but only through the balance that exists in the polarities.
It is all working together, yet often humans will separate themselves
consciously and unconsciously from that interconnectivity of nature.
Those with a connection to Spirit, God, Source, often do so through the cathedral in the sky,
Heaven, Nirvana, Cosmic Home, the universe…
This ascension of spiritually through the Spirit in the Sky is powerful and critical to understanding our purpose,
connecting to it through prayer, meditation, transcendental experiences and/or psychedelic aid.
Powerful medicines and meditation rituals, awakening a cosmic knowing that evolves our consciousness.
Allowing us to deepen FAITH, in self, in other, in God / Source and in a greater good.
When not tainted through a dogmatic approach to God,
this connection to creator is crucial to our survival as a species.
Yet so often forgotten is the cathedral of nature, the medicine, wisdom and consciousness that lies beneath our feet.
Ancient and wise, she has seen many civilizations, species and seasons come and
go and she asks that we come home to her now.
The Cathedral that has sung us to her waters, reminds us of the importance of the whole ecosystem
working as one, the balance, harmony and unity working together.
Without the container the masculine (stone) provides, that feminine (water) has no direction, even as it journeys her long veins
down to the ocean, it arrives in a larger container, held by the basin that makes up the oceans of the planet.
There is not one without the other.
They equally need one another, as they give one another purpose, direction and flow.
How have we strayed so far from this harmony and understanding of the existence of the eco-system working as a whole,
and feel as though we are not part of that?
We are here to help and nourish nature just as much as nature is here to nourish and support us.
Where do we go from here, to rebuild, re-earth and remember how to be one with the whole and not separate from it?