“Starting from within, working in a circle, in a sacred manner, we heal ourselves, our relationships and the world.” ~ Chief Phil Lane, Jr.
Dense. Fog. Not the dark mercury fog of deep winter. Instead a thick membrane of white-gray. Seeming impenetrable while the light is already beginning to suffuse the placenta birthing this day. Silhouettes emerging. A circle. The Standing Nation, tall, shoulder to shoulder. The semi-round waxing moon had been present very early this morning, casting light onto Echo Lake, now she is on the other side of the fog. Only milky white, shadows in the distance. The lake is an altar. It is a circle before me every day. Surrounded by the circle of trees. The concentric circles begin within me, working their way out into the world.
Offering prayers to the North, to what remains of a non-winter, the trees tell me to go to the core of things within myself. I go seeking to understand what lay beneath. What is the motivation? What are the emotions? What is at the heart of me? At my very core? Often in the forest I find pieces of wood that are just that, the core, the place of connectivity, of a branch growing from trunk. I’ve kept some, one particular piece was sanded smooth becoming a talking stick for the Children’s Circle. There are many circles – symbolic, metaphoric and physical in this reality that are part of my life.
Many circles. Circle of life. The circle of the seasons. The astrological wheel a continuous circle. Many Sacred Circles of Peoples. The hoop of a family. The hoop of a drum. The waft of a feather fan, begins in the circle of a nest, sage smoke moves out into the Universe. The round of a rattle allowing the contents to emanate voice. A stone tossed into the lake creates ripples that move, even if interrupted, to the shoreline, meeting that circle of earth surrounding the circle of lake. It is all connected. Concentric circles. Starting from within. Working in a circle. In a sacred manner.
The work at Soul Proprietor happens in a circle. A container created by prayer, by intention and by the people who come to create. Over the years numerous Teachers have begun to send their students to me, to craft in a good way their ceremonial and sacred objects. Each of these Teachers carry a unique piece of a healing perspective. I integrate these threads of wisdom into my life, woven fabric. This past Sunday another new Circle, eight beautiful women came to birth drums. The guidance that came forward for me to share with them was to learn the sacred songs, using their drums to send up a voice. A healing. Their teacher is one who carries the songs. Their hearts begin the circle. Starting from within. Working in a circle. In a sacred manner. We heal ourselves. Our relationships. And the world.
I am filled with gratitude.
Brother Phil asked me and the entire Circle to memorize the opening quote to this post. He asked also that we live it. Make it our walk in the world. With it comes so much honesty, so much hope, optimism. I am inspired. The fog has lifted completely, the pale blue sky boldly colors the water. Trees reflect their strong imprint on the surface of the lake – their crowns pointing towards me – look within to the core of things they say. Starting within. Working in a circle.
I have an old dog who is preparing to cross over. She still has all four feet in this reality and she is preparing, closing in on completion of the circle that is her life. Somewhere a litter of Doberman puppies are gestating. My father’s wife is preparing too, for her own transition, dancing between life, disease and death. And a baby will be born. Each life begins and ends – a circle, complete within itself and a part of the whole. My heart is both heavy and full, buoyed by these ways of living and working in a circle.
A’ho Mitakuye Oyasin ~ All My Relations