Posted in Lessons, Surrender

Entering the Darkness of the Unknown

Today’s blog is about the times in our lives where the old is or has passed away and the new has not yet been revealed.  It is the time to enter into the darkness of the unknown and to invite classical mythology to inform us of how to be present to the waiting.

Turn Turn Turn

There comes a time in everyone’s life when what we thought we knew about ourselves, our purpose, our destiny, who we thought we knew ourselves to be…..suddenly either comes to an end, or proves to no longer be true.  Maybe we have forsaken single life for marriage, quit our jobs to have children, sent our children out into the world, retired from our jobs, lost the employment that has been our source of meaning and perceived security.  Whatever the circumstance, what we have known comes to an end and we are left there to wonder…..NOW WHAT?  This is the season in our lives when the harvest is complete and the earth lies fallow.  In mythology, this season is represented by Persephone’s journey into the Underworld her mother, Demeter’s, raging and mournful response as she refuese to plant anything new.  Wisdom tells us that this is a time of waiting, being quiet, contemplating.

Raging and Mourning

Like Demeter, we have no choice but to wait through the fallow season for Persephone’s return.  There is a season to plant….and this is not it.  We cannot force nature (or our life’s journey) to do something out of season.  So we wait and show up to what does present itself for tending.  As Demeter’s story reveals, it may also be a time of grieving – a time to mourn the passing of the old and to rage over the disappointment and frustration over the loss, to wag our finger of blame at Hades for stealing our light (Persephone) away, and to scream in impatient expectation for the arrival of something meaningful, fulfilling and prosperous.  While mythology usually stops at Demeter’s perspective on the tale, I believe there is something that Persephone has to teach us about this fallow time as well.

Persephone’s playtime

In the traditional tale, Persephone spends nine months in the world journeying with and assisting her mother in planting, tending and harvesting the bounty of nature.  The other three months, she spends in Hades, “cursed” because she ate three pomegranite seeds in her first journey there which condemns her to this time in the Underworld.  What we often forget about the Persephone story, however, is how she spends her time in the Underworld.  Persephone’s time in the Underworld is not a punishment, instead, it is a reward for her hard work, a time to rest and enjoy the fruits of her labors.  It is a time to feast, to make merry and to enjoy great sex with Hades.  😉  While Demeter is wallowing in self-pity, mourning and raging over this time of separation from her daughter, Persephone is partying away in the Underworld.  I think there is a lesson in this for us.  While it is important to grieve the things we have lost and to mourn the falling away of what we have known, it is equally important to give ourselves permission to rest from our labors, to celebrate the work we have done and to enjoy the feasting and merriment that could be part of this fallow time….if we choose it.

Where in your life have you experienced fallow times, the ending of an era and a time of waiting for the new?

How have you responded to these times of transition?

How did you grieve?  How did you allow yourself to enjoy the time of rest?

Lauri Lumby

http://yourspiritualtruth.com

Posted in Being Human, Inspiration, Surrender

Quitting the Pursuit

Sometimes there is nothing left to do but quit and wait.

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens:

 a time to be born and a time to die,    

a time to plant and a time to uproot,     

a time to kill and a time to heal,    

a time to tear down and a time to build,     

a time to weep and a time to laugh,    

a time to mourn and a time to dance,   

a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,    

a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,     

a time to search and a time to give up,    

a time to keep and a time to throw away,     

a time to tear and a time to mend,    

a time to be silent and a time to speak,     

a time to love and a time to hate,    

a time for war and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8

There comes a time in each of our journeys when we have done and tried everything.  Knowledge, education and experience has been obtained.  Experts consulted.  The soil made ready and  tended.  Seeds planted and watered.  The foundation of supports have been put in place. We have asked for and accepted help.   We have done everything that is within our power to accomplish our goals.  When all has been done that can possibly be done and when we find that our efforts are not yet producing fruit and every effort toward pursuit only leaves us tired and frustrated….it might be time to quit.

Like a farmer who cannot make his planted seeds grow, but can only wait until nature takes its course, we too are sometimes invited to quit….to get out of the way and let the Universe/God take over.  Unless we are a farmer who is familiar with this cycle of working and resting….we might find the invitation to quit as counter-intuitive.  If nothing else, it certainly goes against the Western model which tells us that the harder we work the greater will be our reward.  The truth, however, is that if our efforts continue to go unrewarded and our fruits never come to bear, we might be barking up the wrong tree.  The Divine/God might have better plans in store for us.  Plans  we cannot see because we are too busy pursuing what our ego thinks we want.   When we find ourselves continually hitting our head against the wall and the wall refuses to budge….it might be time to QUIT….to LET GO…..to GET OUT OF THE WAY.   We just might be surprised to see what happens when we quit the relentless pursuit and let God drive the bus!  Or as one of my favorite saints, Hildegard of Bingen was quoted as saying:

“The feather flew, not because of anything in itself but because the air bore it along.  Thus am I a feather on the breath of God.”

copyright 2012  Lauri Lumby

Posted in Surrender

After You’ve Planted the Seeds

Today’s blog explores the topic of surrender.  What do we do after we’ve done all we can?

Jesus said, “This is how it is with the kingdom of God; it is as if a man were to scatter seed on the land and sleep and rise night and day and the seed would sprout and grow, he knows not how. Of its own accord the land yields fruit, first the blade, then the ear, then the full grain in the ear.  And when the grain is ripe, he wields the sickle at once, for the harvest has come.” Mark 4: 26-29

 


 

While I have many favorite scripture passages, this is my favorite reading about surrender and manifestation.  In this reading Jesus reminds us that sometimes there are times in our lives when we have to simply sit back and let God do the work.  This is where I find myself at this point in my journey.  I have taken time to listen to Divine guidance.  I have accepted the invitations as they were presented.  I have prepared the soil, planted, watered and tended the seeds of my (hopefully) Divinely inspired and guided hopes, dreams, visions, desires.  Now, I find there is nothing else I can do but get out of the way and let God finish what God has started.

I think this is true in all of our lives.  Like a farmer tending the field, we do what we can, then we have to sit back and let nature/God do its work.  It can be a frustrating time as we anxiously await the growth of our work and our dreams.  We want the harvest to come NOW.  But there is danger in this kind of impatience.  If we force the growth or step into the opportunities before they are truly ripe, all we get is sour, bitter or inedible fruit.  So, we wait.  We wait until the seeds are mature and ready to harvest.  Then we shall reap the reward of our hard work and patience.

So, today I surrender to God’s work and trust that somewhere in the darkness, in the silence, in the waiting, God is bringing all this hard work to ripeness.  And, I look forward to the day when I can enjoy the juicy, sweet, ripened fruit of my labors and when that happens, I will gladly share it with you!

 

What seeds have you planted?

Where are you in the planting, cultivating process?

How are you being invited to surrender to waiting?

 

Lauri Lumby

Authentic Freedom Ministries/YourSpiritualTruth

http://yourspiritualtruth.com

 

PS:  Thanks for the great birthday present yesterday……our 100th subscriber!   Thanks to the person who accepted the call to be the 100th monkey!  🙂  Now I wonder if we have met critical mass?????   One can only hope!  😉  Keep on spreading the word!