Values are the things in life that you hold dear and have meaning for you and help you to have clarity about and focus on what is most meaningful for you. A few of my values are freedom, family, nature, curiosity, wonder and wisdom.
I found this awesome resource around discovering your values and how to use them to set goals and follow through on them, using your values. It’s a multi-article resource on Steve Pavlina’s website. Check it out!
Living Your Values, Part 1 – Steve Pavlina
— Read on www.stevepavlina.com/blog/2004/12/living-your-values/
The whole is in us and all around us. Everything is in us and together we are everything. We are vast. We are the cosmos incarnate.
by Cora Pacheco
Honeyland is a documentary directed by Jlubo Stefanov and Tamara Kotevska. It won the 2019 Sundance awards for Cinematography, Documentary and Impact for Change. It is a simple but profound story, and a metaphor for modern day humanity and the crossroads we have come to as a species on this tiny, blue planet.
***Spoiler Alert*** If you plan on watching the documentary, you might want to go do that first, then come back and read more 🙂
Here’s the story: We watch the simple but rewarding life of Hatidze, a beekeeper in the mountains of Macedonia. She lives with and cares for her elderly, ailing mother in their humble, rustic home with their dog and cats. She makes a living by cultivating honey using traditional methods. Her hives are in the mountains in alcoves in the mountain itself. She has to walk a distance and climb up the rocky hills in order to access them. She is rewarded with healthy hives with a number of honeycombs. She harvests some and leaves some for the health of the hive. She practices reverence for animals and for nature. There is enough for her and for them. Hatidze cares for her elderly mother, who suffers from some undisclosed illness that has taken the sight of one of her eyes. She feeds her porridge and bananas she buys in town with the money she gets from selling the honey. It is excellent honey, one of her customers comments. Apart from her mother’s ill health, Hatidze lives a harmonious, if sometimes lonely, life.
Suddenly, one day, a family arrives in the deserted village. The cacophany begins as mother, father and their seven children arrive with their cattle and dilapidated trailer. At first, Hatidze welcomes their presence and spends time with them, trying to get a transistor radio to work, dancing with the children in the evening and showing one of the older boys how a bee hive works.
The Father decides he too will get into the honey making business and sets up his various wooden hives. Hatidze shares her knowledge of how to care for the hive and collect the honey. The family ekes out a living but conflict becomes a daily occurrence in the new household. The children are required to help with the beekeeping but balk when they are repeatedly stung. The Father has struck a deal with a Business Man to produce a massive amount of honey for him. This stranger is obsessed with the delicious honey.
I watched the documentary last night and today I find myself reflecting on the significance of the story. In fact, for me it symbolizes a metaphor for the modern day world and humanity’s relationship with nature and the Earth.
Hatidze represents Feminine energy: she cares for her elderly mother, she cares for her hives and extracts only what she needs from them, leaving plenty behind for the continued health of the hive. She has compassion and reverence for animals and life. She lives in a harmonious rhythm with the world around her. She exhibits compassion for her mother and patience for the rhythm of life itself.
The Father and the Business Man represent Masculine energy. The Business Man exhorts the Father to produce more honey for him. The Father, though conflicted, sets about to do so, even though it means that his practices are not sustainable. He takes as much as he can from the hives, and as a result, the hives fail. This also creates havoc for Hatidze’s neighbouring hives, as the Father’s bees go looking for another hive. We see how, in all the flurry of producing honey, the livestock is not properly cared for resulting in diseased and dead animals. More conflict between the Father, Mother children ensues.
We see how the Father and the Business Man prioritize economic matters, unsustainable production, and lack of regard for the bees and the rhythms of nature. They lack patience, reverence for life and regard everything as a means to an end.
Then, just as abruptly, the family leaves. There is nothing left for them there. They’ve taken what they can, and now in their wake leave Hatidze to deal with her failed hives. It reminds me of the scenario where a giant corporation comes in and clear cuts old growth forests and then leaves, without regard for conservation, climate impacts or those living on or near those lands.
I find this to be a metaphor for what is happening in this time period of commercialism on Earth. Instead of ensuring everyone has the necessities of life, corporations and governments focus on profit at the expense of people and the Earth. The Earth is being, and has been, pillaged for decades now, and we are arriving at the moment of “colony death”.
Can we take the lesson this story is offering us and move forward with a view to change our ways? It seems that the more “progress” we make as a species, the more we need to go back to doing things more simply, and more in rhythm with the natural world, and our own physical and psychological needs. We need to prioritize health for all beings, including animals and the Earth herself. Will we wake up and have the courage and political will to do this? We definitely can, if we take positive action now. One way to take positive action is to let your political representatives know that climate change, health and well-being and sustainability are priorities for you. Share this message, get involved in some little or big way. It all counts and moves us in the right direction.
Here are just a few links for organizations that are working for good. Check them out!
Canadians.org – The Council of Canadians
Published first on Wonder and Impact.
Please go to the link below to read my story of transition at mid-life, and about my participation in the Sacred Creative Collective group coaching.
I am calling this reading A Healing Combination because with both Temperance and Justice coming up, I feel that this reading is trying to communicate what changes are needed for healing, in the grand scheme of things in the world, at this time. There is a vibe of balancing or weighing opposites and discerning what actions to take when all is considered (Justice) and felt (Temperance). I will come back to these elements in a moment, but first let’s look at the Queen of Swords.
Personally, I can relate to this Queen as she sits there quietly holding her arm out in a welcoming gesture and holding her sword up high, letting you know that she is all about what’s true and right and about being clear-headed. And I feel she is mirroring the Justice card in meaning, and quite literally, since she’s facing it. Why is she looking over at Justice? Maybe she is telling us that we are off kilter right now? Pointing out that something needs to bring us back into balance? And with all that sword energy, it seems to say: use your clear thinking and logical mind and for God’s sake, look at the facts and the truth in order to figure this out.
Together the Queen of Swords and the Justice card are asking us to look with a clear head at what’s around, what’s going on and determine what is the best course of action to take, with the highest good of all in mind. Juxtaposing these two cards with Temperance, also makes me feel as if there is a karmic vibe to this message. The Queen of Swords stands for truth, clarity and fairness on the earthly realm; Justice for the same ideals, as well as balance on the bigger cosmic plane. And then we also have Temperance, another major arcana card which is also “weighing in”, no pun intended. According to Paul Quinn, in his book Tarot for Life, Temperance represents Iris, a winged messenger of the gods in the time of Zeus, who created the rainbow in order to permit Iris to descend to earth and bring messages to humanity. Iris became known as the goddess of the rainbow and represented a bridge between Heaven and Earth. So the angel of Temperance is helping us to bridge Heaven and Earth and is doing so as an alchemist. She assists each of us to “dilute denser energies” so as to help us continue on our path of self-mastery and self-actualization (represented by the road leading towards the mountains and the gold crown).
As an alchemist, Temperance is about synthesizing, mixing and blending two or more things to create something entirely new; something better than the sum of its parts. Maybe the angel is telling us the solution is to be found in something we haven’t tried yet. That we need to blend some things in order to find the solution. I do feel a ying and yang vibe too – which to me speaks also of the divine feminine/divine masculine balance, which I think is so necessary if we are to move forward in our evolution. The angel’s red wings really jumped out at me as if to say, now is the time to trust in the unseen, that which is not readily discernable with our senses but certainly is with our imagination. Angelic forces are really here to assist us, so maybe we should believe in them and invite them in to help us bring about the new. Partnering with angelic forces so we can evolve into our higher selves would definitely be a healing combination. 🙂
Ten of Pentacles: by taking care of our physical needs – the whole human family (the world tapestry), as well as all sentient beings, grounding ourselves and staying connected to each other as best as we can.
Knight of Pentacles: this is going to take a while; know that it’s a marathon, not a sprint; we may not see the future clearly; we are on a “bridge”, have patience, trust and surrender; take one day at a time.
The Sun: remain optimistic, pray for and focus on a good outcome for all, don’t watch too much news; plant some seeds that can grow during this time (real or metaphorical); use this time to do something you’ve always wanted to do: use this time as an opportunity.
Hawk: sees every little detail as well as the big picture (sometimes we have to zoom out – how is this situation possibly bringing future change?) Hawk is also a messenger from the divine: we are not alone, the divine is here among us; what nudges are you getting? Tap into your intuition. Call on your spirit team for help in whatever way you need it!
Sending you bright wishes for a happy day, Cora
This post is about navigating what I’m calling “the bridge” on the path of life. The metaphorical bridge is where we are when we feel like we’re not sure where we’re heading. Or, we know where we would like to be heading, but we don’t know how to get there. It could feel like we’re stuck, or we’re in some kind of limbo la-la-land which never seems to go anywhere.
These times could also be when we feel that something is missing in our lives, but we can’t quite pin it down. Or it’s a time where we are looking after someone else, whether it be children, our elderly parents, a friend going through cancer treatment etc., or when we ourselves are not well.
We might ask ourselves, “why is this happening?” and it may feel like it’s all too much and it’s never going to end. We may feel, among other emotions, exhausted, overwhelmed, depressed, uninspired, restless, angry, bored.
During these times, I think it is helpful to envision ourselves walking on a bridge, one that we can’t see where it goes or where it ends. We can’t go back, so we just keep going.
It’s during these times that we need to develop patience by telling ourselves that it’s ok that we don’t know yet. We have to get comfortable with being on standby. Which leads me to the second thing that’s important during these times. The grandma of them all – surrender. Years ago, I had no idea what that really meant. Weren’t we supposed to keep fighting the good fight? It turns out surrender does not mean throwing in the towel and walking away, or giving up. It happens when you admit to yourself and to God or the Universe that you’ve given it your all and you don’t know what else to do; you give it all (the situation, whatever is causing you distress), over to the divine intelligence that created you and all things, to manage. You agree to allow Life to handle it for you AND you stand by for guidance. “Show me the way,” is a good mantra for these times.
It can be pretty surreal and amazing to see what happens once you’ve surrendered. Things do start to happen, not the least of which is feeling more peaceful. People may go and then maybe come back, a new may job appear, and your life may even get really shaken up. In tarot, the Tower card represents a time in which sudden change occurs. It shows a large building with fire coming out of it and people being thrown from it. Sometimes it shows a tower being struck by lightening. It represents those times when what currently exists gets shaken up or toppled over so that something new and better can replace it.
I’m here to tell you from personal experience, that these times, when we’re walking across the bridge, end up being some of the most defining times in our lives. It is during these times that we are being asked to learn something; what we signed up for Earth school to learn. It’s during these times, that we can do some solid personal development or spiritual work. And when it feels like it’s taking forever to get “somewhere”, maybe it’s because we are exactly where we need to be; exactly where all the learning is going to happen.
I wanted to also say that it is very important to have solid personal care practices during these times. Making sure to take care of our physical bodies with good food and maybe even supplements. Doing some physical activities you enjoy, or something simple like getting out for a daily walk. Spending time in nature is a balm at any time but especially during these times. Taking some time for solitude or developing a morning or evening ritual such as prayer, meditation, pulling an oracle or tarot card for inspiration and clarification, for example. Engaging in an activity that brings you pleasure often, such as a hobby or creative practice is also very nourishing. And reaching out to others, whether it be a friend or family member, pastor or therapist, when you need to talk and process your thoughts and feelings is invaluable. You don’t need to do it alone.
In closing, I hope this has helped you if you are going through a time of uncertainty or change. And I hope that it may help you to see your situation in a different light. That it has a purpose; that ultimately it is for good.
Lastly, I don’t in any way mean to imply that if you’re in a situation where your mental or physical well-being is being threatened, that you should stay in that situation. I would urge you to leave the situation and seek help in your community!
Wishing you all peace and happiness, Cora
I feel that, together, these cards are encouraging us to diligently and with intention, work at our “craft”, (that thing that makes us feel joyful when we’re doing it) and often comes about when we are being creative or feeling inspired in some way. And all of this is leading us to creating a (new) happy world; yours, mine and ours! 🙂
What kind of “work” or activity is calling you? What you have to give is needed!
“Our job in this lifetime is not to shape ourselves into some ideal we imagine we ought to be, but to find out who we already are and become it.”
Steven Pressfield, The War of Art