I recently read a novel entitled, The Blood of Flowers, by Anita Amirrezvani. The story is set in the 1620s during the reign of Shah Abbas the Great in what is now Iran. One of the arts the Shah promoted was carpet making. At that time, carpets were coveted by European kings, noblemen, wealthy merchants, and artists such as Rubens, Velazquez, and Van Dyck. Under his patronage, carpet making was elevated to the status of fine art; examples of this fine workmanship exist today in museums and private collections around the world. I was particularly moved by the title, which signifies the death of millions of flowers, their blooms picked at the height of their glory in order to create the indelible dyes used in the creation of carpets. The author wrote that she drew the title from a poem called "Ode to a Garden Carpet," by an unknown Sufi poet, circa 1500. The poem portrays the garden carpet as a place of refuge that stimulates visions of the divine. I was feeling sorry for the flowers while I read the story and was reminded of AMAG's words, "Everything that exists in your world is engaged in eating and being eaten. What appears to you as the death of one form is the birth of something else. Everything is both consuming and being consumed at the same time."
Yesterday's holiday historically celebrated the return of the Sun and everything that warmer weather promised in terms of fertility and abundance. In between the equinox and high summer, it marks a time of new beginnings. On fire with enthusiasm after having felt frozen in time and space for months, I'm excited to announce new opportunities for people to enjoy AMAG this year. In July, I'll be in Omaha, NE visiting a long-time friend and offering group Conversations with AMAG. Mid-August, I'll be in Missoula, MT for another Wisdom Journey (already full), and perhaps a group reunion with friends of AMAG in that area. I'm still scouting locations for that possibility. October 7 - 10 are the dates chosen for a Wisdom Journey in Tucson, AZ. If the beautiful house chosen for the residential seminar meets or exceeds expectations, then I'll schedule another Wisdom Journey in Tucson. These seminars fill very quickly. There are only three spaces left for the October one, so if you're interested in participating, please contact me right away.
What a difference to be pain free! Several of my friends suffer painful chronic conditions and I have always sympathized with their plight. Gaining relief after five long months of pain and stiffness in my left shoulder has taught me even more than sympathy with that experience. It's hard to fathom reasons to choose pain as a learning technique in order to add wisdom to one's "body of information," however, I am well acquainted with having made that choice in this lifetime, too. I'm also ready to find new ways to gain wisdom. One of the most useful tools in my kit these days are the Dimensions of Consciousness that AMAG says we all have available to us to use as needed. They have reminded us for years that we're all multidimensional beings "possessed of total freedom" and I think I'm beginning to understand what they mean by that. It's up to me to decide in what dimension I choose to position myself and where I choose to focus my attention. Rather than just masking a problem or avoiding sensation, being able to shift my perspective to a completely different realm of consciousness allows me to celebrate life again. Rather than crying out in pain I can make a joyful noise instead.
Oreo, our cat, must not have been ready to return home because when I attempted to transport her from the RV to the truck yesterday, she wriggled so much in my arms that I strained my left shoulder again. I managed to contain her despite the pain in my shoulder, which had obviously been moved in a direction it's not ready yet to go. Severe pain continued through the night so I decided to visit the doctor this morning. Sure enough, another small tear. This is a lesson that's requiring more concentration than I had imagined it would. The biggest difference is that this time the doctor recommended massage instead of more therapy and suggested a local masseur with years of experience with adhesive capsulitis, which is the fancy name for a condition commonly called "frozen shoulder." Connective tissue is supposed to be adhesive, but just not with so much enthusiasm for the job. As AMAG says, "everything is an asset until it becomes a liability."
It's good to be home again after having been away about three weeks. Having been on their own during my absence, my husband and our cat have decided that we should pack up and go camping. Our home is surrounded by oak and juniper trees, but they are of a variety that do not grow very tall. I find after exposure to forests of fir trees (in Oregon and Washington) that I really miss the majestic vertical lines and am happy to go where they are here in New Mexico. After five myokinesiology treatments, I feel like a new woman! Almost no pain and much more strength in my shoulder and arm. I'm looking forward to camping and hiking around the small town of Glenwood, a short drive north for a day or two, then we'll go back toward Silver City to the Burro Mountain Homestead. The homestead is a parklike RV campground nestled among tall pines. Just the ticket! Our cat loves to chase lizards and small ground squirrels and we enjoy exploring backcountry trails. It's easy to forget to relax in the midst of so much activity that encompasses all of our lives. AMAG continually reminds us to "...rest, relax, and breathe. Allow yourself to move through life with ease." I guess I had forgotten that recently.