| 21 April, 2011 12:24
Yesterday was the one year anniversary of the BP oil tragedy. As I moved about the studio in preparation for Festival International next week, I pondered the impact it has had on our lives. A few awarenesses came to me that I thought I might share. Since we live on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, we saw and experienced the effects firsthand. For months, everyone's lives felt like they were in limbo. We were inundated with ugliness that just kept washing over us like waves of pain and suffering. We saw People's lives destroyed, we watched as the sea life and birds suffered and died. Certainly, there were many volunteers who did so much to make a difference by working to clean off the oiled Creatures. When we see this on a daily basis, it can influence us on many levels and truly shake our world. I always feel like we need to learn from the "mistakes" and find a way to live better and to cultivate greater reverance for ALL Life.
Since CLAY is my thing, I often have DUST and clean up "messes" in my life. Katrina was the first really BIG Mess and there are always little ones that need attention. That is true in all our lives, well, unless we have someone to clean them up for us I guess. Not me, I prefer to do my own cleaning. Washing, dusting, and mopping is simply a necessary aspect of being a Potter/Sculptor. On a regular basis, I clean, but I also stop and ponder IF there is metaphorical dust building up in the chambers of my heart. It can appear at first as a resentment or a little unforgiveness that I have not addressed. It can build into something monsterous if I do not pay close attention and find a way to release it.
For this reason, I always take the time, every single day, to find a quiet place in our garden to sit or even to stand. Often, I do both.While in the lovely garden that we have created, I take the time to ponder and reflect. We can often become so busy in our hustle and bustle world that we forget the immense value of just sitting quietly. We do not always have to be DOING something. Perhaps, the constant doing feels like a necessity. Perhaps it is also a way that we allow ourselves to be distracted from our true feelings. At times, Life can feel a bit overwhelming.
In our little garden, there are many preciousTeachers. Sometimes they appear in the form of Lizards, or Spiders, or Praying Mantis, or Butterflies that flutter by. I stumbled upon an empty COCOON recently, and was bewildered when I to sat down and examined it closely. As I did this, I remembered how I had first seen it during the winter when it was blowing in the wind. Remember that song that says: "the answer my Friend is blowing in the wind, the answer is blowing in the wind" ? During the winter months when I first saw the cocoon, there was something magical going on inside, but I could not SEE it. Still, I trusted that a metamorphorosis was happening. In spite of EVERYTHING that I have ever been thru on this journey, I am learning to Trust Life more and more. Is this easy? Not really. Is it essential to keeping my heart free of DUST and heavy burdens? Absolutely.
Just as this Butterfly or Moth emerged from the cocoon to fly out into the world, we can also fly. IF we dust ourselves off, are willing to release our burdens, keep our hearts light, create empty space so that our wings can grow, then, eventually our hearts take flight. Truthfully,it is an ongoing process. We are the Ones that create the limitations in our lives. Unforgiveness is a limitation. Anger is a limitation. There are many ways to accumulate limitations. Hatred and blame are also limitations.There are also tangible ways to be light and FREE. When I sit still, breathe, stare into space, I find my Mind getting quieter and more peaceful. At first it is like an unruly child, but eventually it quiets down. It is a practice that I do often. During those times, the dust is shaken off. I would encourage You to go out and find a quiet space to just sit. Perhaps look at a LEAF and observe the veins in it. Or, find a flower and really SEE it. Look at it as though You might not live to see tomorrow. Truth is, we are not promised tomorrow, but we do have this moment NOW. May we make the most of it.
If there is something weighing on your heart or your mind, find a way to release it. Playing and creating in clay has helped me. Tending to the many plants, flowers and trees in our garden has helped me as well. We only make ourselves sick when we continually carry the weight of the world on our shoulders. I have found that I can work to control my own responses to various things that happen. I work to create a more beautiful world in my own simple way. When I create a Piece in clay, write a message or story on the back of the piece, I do that because it is my offering of LOVE to the world. When I create, I feel FREE. You can be Free too. We can all be FREE by releasing the things that do not serve us anymore. I am FREE in my body, in my heart, in my mind. Perhaps we can explore ways to create a more beautiful world, and in the process, learn to FLY beyond limited thinking or limited feelings.