Signs Along the Path - a Guide to An Inspired Life, by John Davis and Holly Matson I've been musing on what having a book out means to me. It's a role I had never expected! First is the "birth" aspect I've heard about so often - the fact that something I labored so hard on and spent so much time on is now a hold-it-in-your-hands product. But also the concept that something I had a hand in is now a resource to help people. Now THAT is powerful!
I am amazed and delighted that my 20 or so years of spiritual exploration and discovery have brought me to the teachers I have encountered along the way. I am blessed that Spirit worked with me to release the blocks I had and to help me to the joys I have. I've met wonderful Lightworkers in the process, and the "social circles" I am now active in are loving, like- and light-minded people. One of the brightest lights is John Davis, the author of the essays in our book and one of my dearest friends.
I think of those "Signs" along MY path and where they have led me. And now some of the things I've learned are illuminated by this book for others to follow as they choose. What light can you leave for others to follow?
Okay, before anybody has a fit about that title, let me explain. In response to my friend John Davis's (www.johnofpeniel.com) recent blog in which he quoted his fiancee's line that "God is hot water", I posted a comment that God is dirt. After a very long, LONG Ohio winter, it's finally spring, with the sprouting plants, the greening of the trees, and that lovely loamy earth smell. I anticipate getting my hands in the dirt again, to plant, to weed, to rest. I find my greatest quiet time in the earth - literally. I bemoan having a tiny garden, as I have nothing much to dig in! But I know God is there. He speaks to me there, and in all the smells and tiny green things I have absolute proof of that. I am so grateful for all the season changes, as I know God is in all of it, but OH the joy of being able to touch the earth.
For many years I lived in a concrete box of an apartment, with no outside space at all. I felt imprisoned, stifled, cut off from my creativity. When I moved into a more rural environment and once again had garden space, I felt so much more free. I understand more of who my pagan friends call Gaia, because now I feel that living force again, and I know the joy of finding God in the dirt!
I came home from a day spent in deep spiritual thought and discussion. Got my clothes changed and makeup off and went to sit and decompress for a while. One of my three cats, my beloved neurotic fearful Quinnie was on the bed grinning at me (you with animals know what that means), and I sat for a moment beside her, stroked her forehead which makes her purr, and told her how very much I love her and how glad I am she's one of my furbabies. I know full well she can't completely understand in her cat-spirit how much I love her, because she's only a cat and she doesn't vibrate or communicate on the same level.
So, is that what it's like for God? S/he sits with us stroking our foreheads, knowing all the while how "merely human", neurotic and fearful we are, loving us anyway. Loving us in a depth and expanse that we can never fully comprehend, because we're only human and we don't vibrate or communicate on the same level.
Sit with that and contemplate a while, and get a glimpse of the power of love.
I was born perfect and whole and knowing Who I Am. Then I learned separation. Then I learned Who I Am Not. Then I was told that Who I Am is wrong. "You're doing it wrong. Who you think you are is wrong. I know who you are. I know who you should be. I know you better than you know yourself." So I went along with it, not knowing any different. Each new person that came along told me something different, so I went along with it. I believed that Who I Am was whatever I was being told at the moment. So each new Who I Am shakeup meant resignation, grief, fear, regret, shame. And that became Who I Am.
Then I begin to hear Spirit, and hear them telling me that all those things are NOT Who I Am. And so that new shakeup triggers resignation, grief, fear, regret, shame. The sudden pulling-out of the rug. The shakeup feels like it always has. The showing to me of glimpses of WHO I AM shakes me to the very core, even through the fear. The mirroring of WHO I AM by new others in my life who I admire, love and respect also shakes me. Because who I see in that mirror reminds me of the original Who I Am that I came in with. Reminds me that I've lived a false life. Reminds me of my compliance, of everything I lost, and oh the grief. And then I feel shame at the compliance. Even now, sometimes when I have heard "there is another way" I still hear "you are wrong."
And even through the grief and shame I see glimmers, flashing glimpses of the real true original Who I Am. The whole, perfect, loved and loving ME. That there was NEVER ANYTHING WRONG WITH ME. NEVER. And I am beginning to see the joy of Guidance and Trust and Love. I am learning that the layers put upon me were not mine. That my wounds are healing rapidly, that there is NO SHAME in the process. I am learning to feel trust in ME again, and in Spirit again. And I will trust Guidance that when My Love is present, he will help me overcome the last of the damage done, in unconditional love and acceptance of me AS I AM. As WHO I AM. And that is good, not fearful. Because I am learning that I am BELOVED. I am learning that I am SO worthy of love and respect. I am SO worthy of having, and of giving. And that what I have to give the world is worthy of acceptance by those who will benefit, especially WHO I AM.
After the shattering from the earthquake, then is revealed the hidden treasure.
Time to 'fess up - I don't always practice what I preach. **gasp** I have always strongly resented people telling me who I should be, what I should believe, what I should do. "Should" is a nasty swear word that means that whatever you are, believe or do is WRONG. I believe in everyone having their own journey and their own beliefs, and their God given right to those, and I would never presume to judge the rightness or wrongness of their life. What I find myself overcoming now is a tendency to hear words of discomfort, pain, struggle, hurt, anger, fear, and a desire to immediately redirect the person, teach them there are other ways. So, I'm learning to not respond to the words I hear, and to allow the person to feel what they feel. I prefer to shine my own light, and if someone ASKS me for feedback then I'm happy to say how I overcame my own discomfort, pain, struggle, etc etc. When I see people in what I perceive as states of extreme not-in-the-light, I need to remember that they have a right to that state unless they ask for a hand up. That's not to say, however, that I don't offer coins to a beggar, or help someone up when they fall! I'm not heartless, and in fact this redirection of my judgement is because I've tended to offer too much heart and not too little, getting myself into a state of discomfort, pain, (yeah, you know the litany).
Also in the process I've noticed a bit of internal resentment I need to work on, when en-light-ened friends who I trust imply that I'm not "doing it right" because I'm in my own journey. I think that resentment is self-created, because no "not right" words have been spoken and the implication is my own perception. When a Lightworker has very strong beliefs based on their connection to God, they can sometimes be so eager for others to join them in their light-place that they can forget that we all may not want to, may not choose to walk that particular path. Hey, I may enjoy the view over here better! Doesn't mean that I don't want to end up on that same mountaintop, but I'm gonna choose my own way there.
So, that's my task for the next couple of weeks - work out why I feel self-created resentment, and choose to feel joy for my OWN journey instead. Find yours!
I've been reading more of my favorite teacher Abraham, about allowing versus making. If all I could ever want is already out there in the ethers just waiting for my call, then I need to call! But more than that, I need to pave the road. I have a picture in mind of a jungle expedition - there is a caravan of goodies waiting to take off and be delivered to me, and I need to clear the path for them through the tangle of brush. Clearing the road is not work, it's the "action" of relaxing and allowing. I watch as more and more of the path opens up, simply by my intent and desire. The minute I decide to speed it up and interfere, the overgrowth takes over like in the movies. When I relax again and say "yes, thank you, I can feel my abundance coming, I can hear the footsteps and the jingle of the horses' harness and I accept it", THEN the overgrowth magically disappears! Way to create, Matson!
What is darkness? Is it an actual thing? No, it's the absence of a thing, of light. One of my favorite metaphysical teachers Abraham talks of "the dark switch." When you walk into a bright room do you look for the dark switch? Of course not, you turn off the light! But why then do some people carry around a dark switch with them?
Recently a friend invited me along on for her weekend birthday celebration in New Orleans. After a fun weekend we got to the airport to come home, and as we went to our gate we saw a beignette stand and realized that the entire weekend we never had tasted this famous New Orleans treat! We had time so we got coffee and made-for-us beignettes and sat down. The cashier left the stand for about a minute, and in that minute a man walked up, saw nobody behind the counter, turned to my friend and me and said "This is what's wrong with New Orleans!" We thought he was joking about the sugary fatty treats, but no, instead he was flipping on a dark switch. He went on to rant, absolutely rant, that the counter was unattended. Of course during the time he wasted ranting the cashier had returned so he ranted at her. "I don't have time to wait for you to do your job" blah blah. The poor girl was trying to serve him but he wouldn't stop ranting, even as he ranted about not having time to wait for her! He finally simmered down enough to get his food, went and sat down. My friend and I were so upset but concerned about feeling better. We joked with the cashier, "Gosh isn't it a shame some people choose to start their days yelling and screaming? I prefer laughter myself!" The mood started to lift and I felt better, we all did. I hadn't seen that the ranter had sat near enough to us to probably overhear, and as he left, he stopped at our table to say that he had apologized to the cashier. "I love New Orleans, I really do, but this is awful and that is awful and this, well, that's just plain wrong. . . " blah blah. Rant Rant. Dang it, he flipped the dark switch again!
The difference for me from my past reactions to dark-switchers is that in the past I would have been upset all day, carried HIS anger all day. Instead I decided to flip the LIGHT switch on and enjoy my day. So I did!
I just watched one of the more emotional Oprah shows I've seen (yes, I watch Oprah!). And what a joyful counter to the ugliness that's rampant in the media right now as a result of two ignorant, fear and hate-filled, and unfortunately very visible men's comments on the catastrophe in Haiti. The show centered on a loving and generously giving way to counter grief, in finding a way to teach and comfort others. Watching the people involved simply LOVING, simply GIVING to each other out of love, washed me clean from my reaction to the controversy around the other subject. There ARE loving and kind spirits in the world, and I am so joyfully glad to be working with several of them. In contrast to the ugliness, I am deliberately focusing on spreading joy to the world. My focus is on the love, therefore that is what I intend to experience. I will not give energy to the hate.
I have witnessed so many amazing and blessed things working with John Davis in this wonderful work. One of the most awe-some (in the original sense of the word) and the most profound happened only two weeks ago. The last client on a healing day entered the room to sit with John. Shortly after the session began, John called me into the room, and with the permission of the client (who we know well), I was asked to sit in. John explained that to the left of the client's shoulder was a huge angel who was sending light into her. As he took our friend's hands to begin the energy work of the session, something amazing happened - the angel spoke through John to the client, and we knew that important messages were flowing for her. John was obviously no longer "present", and the style and cadence of his speech was nothing like John's. In fact, I jokingly say that "he" sounded a great deal like James Earl Jones!
After information was provided to the client about her own journey, suddenly I heard the words "As to this called John. . . " For all the majesty and sacredness in that room, I felt compelled to ask, "Is there a message for John?" There was a pause, and a slight chuckle. I heard uplifting and important words for John regarding our work, and then the angel said something meant for all of us. This is what I heard - pay close attention to these words:
"It is thick here. . . thick. . . like syrup. Sweet. Taste the sweetness."
And then it was over, John was back and coughing hard. He remembered nothing of the "conversation" and was amazed to hear what had transpired. He did relate that he recognized the angelic energy to be Gabriel, who has worked with John before. . . Gabriel, the Messenger, come to encourage John, my friend and mentor on this journey. And come to encourage everyone we can reach with the message - Taste the sweetness. I know now more than ever before how important this work is, to empower and enlighten. To encourage and uplift. To literally en-light-en the planet. And I will never EVER forget the angelic message which is now an important inclusion in our teaching. Live life to its fullest, savor every moment. Yes indeed, taste the sweetness!
So many people have asked me how I got involved with working with John Davis and John of New that I thought I should share the story here.
I'd become acquainted with John through the Great Lakes Medieval Fair, where he'd performed for years and where I spent many a summer weekend. A few years ago I was told about his spiritual website and when I read it, I was moved and excited as this was exactly what I believed as well. Three years ago, I went on a dinner cruise done by the Fair and got re-acquainted with John, who was the Fair's Entertainment Director at the time. Shortly thereafter I was invited to teach the Fair cast medieval dance (one of my hobbies), and after the day's lessons, John and I talked for hours about spirituality, his adventures, etc., and I felt like we were fast (and old) friends.
Now about seven years ago, I had run an event for the medieval group I'm in (where I learned and teach the dancing) and when we cleaned up, I found a tiny silver ring with a beautiful ivy engraving on it. There was an inscription on the inside. I tried for months to find the owner to no avail and something told me to keep it, so I put it in the basket with my crystals. Keep in mind that I was just growing into my own Lightworker status and was definitely a "newbie" to spirit energy.
So, fast forward several years to the spring mentioned before, where John and I talked for hours and became good friends. That was in May.
The week before the Faire was to open, the first week in July of that year, I was poking through my crystals basket for something to take to work for good energy on a rough day. I touched that lost ring, and got a WHOOSH of electrical energy through my body, as if it were charged. I thought I had a pinched nerve! Having forgotten I had the ring, I picked it up and looked at it, and noticed the inscription on the inside - John 15:5. !!!!!!!!!!!!!! I gasped and shook and cried. I looked up the verse - "I am the vine, you are the branches. He who dwells in me and I in him shall have much success." Oh. My. God. I emailed John and told him I believed I had a message for him. He was intrigued but, after all his experiences, not surprised.
I had a reading scheduled with Sharon Prince the next day. Sharon is the reader who opened John to his past life and his present mission, and who has now written the book. She confirmed that the ring was a huge message for all of us (and I didn't understand at the time that I was part of that US). I was so overcome I practically ran out of the house!
Opening day of the Medieval Fair, I was wandering around when John found me, and we went to a relatively quiet area to talk. Shaking, I pulled out the ring and handed it to him so he could see the inscription. His face went white and he said "OH my GOD!!" I handed him a small cloth where I'd embroidered the verse so he'd know the reference. Then he got tears in his eyes, grabbed me, and held on as if he was drowning. We're both crying by then. When he calmed a bit, he said that he'd been behind his stage, praying for guidance - did God want him to give up the security of his entertainment profession to do spiritual work full time, is it time to really step into his mission? And then I showed up with the ring. !!!!!! So, hence, being the ring-bearer and Elvish (I am a very small woman!), my John of New name is Frodo! And I will be forever awed and grateful to Spirit that I was meant to be the safe-keeper for all those years of this special message to John.