In the Celtic calendar, May 1 is Beltaine, the first day of summer: the time to celebrate life, growth and love. The word “Beltaine” derives from the ancient Celtic words for “brilliant fire.”
Our Gregorian calendar says its still spring. But who cares? It’s what’s going on outside our window that’s important. Mother Nature doesn’t follow calendars, as we well know.
And again, this is not the post I had planned for this week. But as I sat in meditation this morning, listening to the birds, frogs and crickets sing their songs, I suddenly realized it was May 1 and the perfect day to write about what’s going on in the natural world.
The First of May, known as May Day, has a tradition of festivals throughout the centuries. It’s a time of celebration of springtime fertility [of soil, livestock and humans] and I would add: beauty!
The return of the Green
After a long hard winter here in Michigan, the weather has turned summer-like very quickly.
It seems as though just a few days ago the woods were bare of leaves and as I look out today, everything is turning green. At an astounding rate!
Mother Nature was waiting for warmth and sun just as we were. And she’s making up for lost time with fast growth.
As I ask myself what’s the lesson to learn from this, what comes to mind is: It’s never too late! Also, all good things come to those who wait.
There’s a saying that everyone knows they’re going to die, but no one believes it. The same is true of natural disasters – everyone knows it could happen in their town, but no one believes it will.
And then it does. And the big question will be: were you prepared?
This is not the post I had planned for this week. I was going to write about “Earthing” – the healing benefits of standing barefoot on Mother Earth.
But this week, my life got interrupted by a natural disaster, and I felt there would be more benefit in a post on the unexpected lessons that occur when Mother Earth seems [emphasis on the word “seems”] to turn against us.
Over 8.6 trillion text messages are sent across the world each day. And not one of them is from me.
I don’t text. And it’s not because I’m a technophobe.
As a writer, I spend most of the day on the computer and thank God regularly for the convenience it brings me.
And even though I love my iPhone, I have had texting disabled on it. Here are my reasons:
One: When one of my favorite T.V. characters was asked why he doesn’t text, he replied “It’s for teenage girls.” I’m inclined to agree.
The average teen sends over 3000 texts per month. But the average teenage girl sends 4000. And these texts have a 100% open rate. How does that leave time for anything else?
Last week’s post was on the power of prayer. And one of my readers raised the excellent point that “sometimes it’s hard for me to feel fulfilled when I pray. I don’t know how to fix that.”
And she is in very good company. Mother Theresa, of all people, also felt unfulfilled when she prayed!
In September 1979, she wrote a letter to the Rev. Michael Van Der Peet, saying: “Jesus has a very special love for you. As for me, the silence and the emptiness is so great that I look and do not see, listen and do not hear.”
The book Mother Teresa: Come Be My Light: The Private Writings of the Saint of Calcutta (Doubleday, 2007) consists primarily of correspondence between Mother Teresa and her confessors and superiors over a period of 66 years.
The letters reveal that for the last nearly half-century of her life she felt no presence of God whatsoever. And yet her works with the poor are so famous she has been beatified on the road to sainthood.
The power of prayer can take many forms. Bear Heart said, “Let your every step be as a prayer.”
What does that mean to you?
To me it means walking the earth each day with respect. And it means being ready to offer a prayer at a moment’s notice.
And prayer can take the form of acts of kindness, because that carries the same energy as prayer.
Learning how to pray
I was raised a Catholic and prayer was something one memorized: the Our Father or the Hail Mary were the two most popular prayers I learned.
When I started attending Native American ceremonies, I was in awe of how people prayed from their heart, in their own words. It took a year or so of being in that environment before I felt comfortable praying out loud in ceremony. Now it’s second nature.