What the Tree Says

Jan 12, 04:45 am

Sit down beside me.
Hush your mind.
The young ones are growing up oblivious to who they are. They have been seeded and raised for production.
Not so different from how your own species is being raised now. But we’re not all like that. Many of the elders and even some of the young remember. We remember a time when all were in relationship. Not that long ago either. When trees and humans loved each other for what they brought to the other..

How was it reciprocal you ask? How did WE benefit from humans? Oh, it was mutual. You help spread our seed, you trim our branches, and make beautiful structures and tools from our wood. It has always been this way. In doing so, you honour and value us. Your appreciation helped us grow big and strong and have many children.

You’ve noticed yourself how your loving touch and voice helps me heal and grow strong. You notice how proud I feel when you admire me or use my medicine. It’s like that. Trees love to be useful, just like humans. We love to have a purpose and to be of service.

You live in a world now where everything, even your own, is seen as a commodity to be used. To be chewed up and spat out by the machine. Your world has lost the story.

What can you do to change this you ask? Sing. Sing to us and especially sing to the young ones. Sing the story. Tell them who they once were, who they really are. They will remember, because it wasn’t that long ago. But you must keep the story alive. The story of our ancestors when trees were the great medicine makers, timekeepers, and healers of our planet. It was so once and it can be so again, but not if the memory is lost.

Keep the story alive in your songs and sing to the young ones, so they can remember and be strong again.



Dec 14, 12:05 pm


It’s time to let the Old Woman have her way and come in. December is a time of deep contemplation for me, -of rune casting, writing, painting, and now swimming! The Old Woman has me tending to the personal, the elemental, and the animal. I’ve discovered my fox friend Annie, my BFF here on the Aspotogan, has mange and I will be trapping her and taking her to Hope for Wildlife so she can rehabilitate. If she’s too cunning to be caught, I will be able to treat her here, but the cold might be too hard on her and Hope has warm space for another fox. Goddess Bless Hope, so often I am noticing the bedrock strength of one woman taking on thousands of helpless suffering animals. It’s incredible. If you have any more money to spare this season, consider a donation to Hope. Without her our injured and diseased wildlife would be left to suffer. This isn’t The Way.

This breathtaking time of Solstice. A time to sit with the year past, and even the decade past. To sit in honesty of who you are and speak your truth. What is working, what isn’t? What would you like to change? What is in your power to change? What were the highlights and lowlights? One of the highlights of this year for me was spending time with Mi’kmaq elder Albert Marshall at the How We Thrive Nova Scotia convergence. As many of you know, I spend a lot of time being with the land here -talking, listening, making medicine, sharing stories and song. But there’s a part of me that is always aware that I am living on stolen land, and this imperial colonial wound gets in the way of feeling like I truly belong here. I do my best, but it’s not home. Sitting with Albert Marshall this spring allowed me to put voice to some of my feelings and feel heard and accepted. Welcomed by the land. As Albert expressed, the colonial wound started here in Nova Scotia so it is at its deepest; here will also be where it truly begins to heal. I felt that healing force of love over the weekend coming from Albert and other Mi’kmaq elders. They are the true voice of this land. The earth still loves us, she just wants us to wake up and belong.

Three questions came out of that encounter. They are:

Who are you?
Where do you come from?
What are you doing here?

I have these sentences taped to my wall. I let them into my digestive tract and merge with my insides. They are a call to the soul to get real. I have a feeling we are going to be hearing more of that soul call as 2020 progresses. May we all answer in our own way and begin or continue on our journey of belonging.

-Blessed Be on the Longest Night.


Words from Our Ancestors.

Nov 12, 12:03 pm

I have been channeling the spirits for years, through written word, song, and healing ceremonies. I’ve been hearing messages for a while to include their words on my website and newsletter. I have been avoiding it! But I see now how it strengthens the connection and trust. So here is my first offering.

MY DEAR, you are so loved. You are so cared for. How can we say all of what we think of you. Yes, you’ve made mistakes but you are learning. You are learning as a human being. If only you could see what we see. Don’t despair on the past, it is not real. There is only now. In this moment, you are perfect just as you are. We are so happy that you have asked to speak with us on your blog. This is a very bold step, and one you should be proud of.

If I could address everyone on your newsletter, I would say to please know that you are from people who love you. That no matter how you feel inside and no matter what has happened in your life, you are a being of love that was made from love. We, the ancestors are sitting now in a field of love, feel that field surrounding you, protecting you, inviting you to be your true selves. Don’t fall victim to the programs of unworthiness, and don’t feed the programs in others either. See all humans as worthy, no matter how many mistakes they have made in the past. Everyone, at every moment has full potential to awaken. Be the person that facilitates that and not restricts it. You have a choice there: to support awakening or limit it. Always choose love.

Humans now talk incessantly about how we struggled in our lives, but dears you forget, we had our spiritual practices. We had relationships with our ancestors and our helping spirits who were very powerful. We lived big lives. We were not savages full of pain and disease. That came later, during the dark times. You as a civilization have improved on your external appearance, but inside you are much worse than we ever were. The dark times still lurk underneath your pretty appearances. So there is not yet balance, not yet improvement. Until you go below the surface of your clean and shiny exterior lives, you will never know the freedom and love we knew. Remember, you were born from love, we are that from which you were born.

-The Ancestors.


Sometimes We Just Need to Slow Down and Be Quiet

Oct 15, 09:59 am

The full moon is waning, the days are getting shorter , and we are quickly approaching Samhain, the Celtic new year and beginning of the darkest quarter. It is the time of dying. The time of year where the plants sink back down into the earth, the birds fly south, the animals get ready for winter. It’s a time for us to slow down and begin to take stock of the year. What did we learn, what were our big mistakes, what can we do better next time, and what can we let go of to make room for the new? (I’ve been learning that we can actually let go of way more than we realize.) What can we keep to bring forward into 2020, or finish up before the new year. Can we die a little every day too with the season, or does that scare us? Making friends with death is practiced on the shamanic path, but really it’s just a part of life. Everything dies. Everything worldly dies. This makes room for rebirth. Can we get a little more comfortable with death this fall?

ON Samhain our Celtic ancestors would walk their land with candle lit gourds to scare off unwanted spirits. It was a way to cleanse the land before winter, so that everything could rest and be fresh in the spring. I love these old customs not just because they are enjoyable to do, but because they work. People feel good when they drive up our driveway and I feel good living here. John continually remarks on how safe the wild animals feel coming here, and we enjoy their company. Cleansing rituals are important and our fast paced world doesn’t have room for that anymore.

Autumn is a time of slowness, of death and decay, of rest, and release. How can we all participate in this seasonal cycle, so that we too are renewed and fresh in the spring? I’m not one for elaborate rituals, I like ones that I can do spontaneously when ever I feel moved to do so. A simple Samhain ritual is to just sit and be quiet everyday, to acknowledge our blessings and life, and to let die what can die on the exhale of our breath. Most times the greatest medicine is the simplest, and usually it’s because we are more likely to do it. And most often all we really need is to slow down and rest for a spell. That gives the healing forces in our bodies and psyche’s time to do their magic.

I wish you all rest this fall. Deep rest and release, so that we are more able to go into those deep scary places collectively and embrace our wholeness. There is always rebirth. Always.


The Spirit of Fall

Sep 23, 06:52 am

It’s Equinox. A time of balance when the sun is rising and setting over the equator giving the entire world half it’s light. IN a few days the length of sunlight will decrease dramatically until the winter solstice. Our days will become shorter and our nights much longer. What does this mean for us? For our northern ancestors it meant storing food and getting ready for winter. There was worry of famine, storms, and extreme cold so people worked hard to be ready. Because we are our ancestors we can still carry that worry and feeling of dread or foreboding. Some people can suffer depression or anxiety in the fall and winter, perhaps SAD has as much to do with our ancestral memory as it does with our biological reaction to light depletion. And its not that a lot of us don’t have real worries about food and heat in the winter with the cost of living and employment being what they are.

Our ancestors cultivated a strong relationship to helping spirits such as ancestor spirits, animal spirits, faeries and gnomes, house spirits, tree and water spirits and guiding spirits such as goddesses and god like beings. With the companionship and help from all these spirits the worry is lessened and the comfort is strengthened. As well, in the autumn as the nights get longer, the veil between the worlds gets thinner allowing us to have more communication and interaction with these spiritual beings. On Halloween or Samhain purification celebrations took place in order to keep the bad spirits away so that our ancestors could be blessed with only helpful spirits in their lives. They knew that to have a spiritual relationship meant that one gets the good with the bad, so they had rituals to maximize the good and minimize the bad. However there were times when even the bad spirits were recognized and appreciated, such as honouring the demons at the winter solstice. Our ancestors understood that to completely deny and disrespect the forces of chaos and destruction was also asking for trouble. A balance always needed to be kept.

Another antidote to fall anxiety and worry is gratitude. Our ancestors also knew that nothing is really ours in this world. Everything is a gift from Spirit be it food, shelter or beauty, health, and success. So offering our gratitude to the spiritual beings who support life was a daily practice. Along with the daily expressions of gratitude were more elaborate rituals of the give away, which is exemplified on our Thanksgiving and Christmas where we give to others what we have, in order to keep the balance.

Sadly, in our secular lives, we often don’t include the spirits of the dead and nature in our festivities, which cuts us off from a dimension of juiciness that could add a lot of joy and colour to our lives. Now the worry isn’t so much about being burned at the stake like it used to be, but more about finding the time. We live such busy distracted lives, it’s hard to take a moment out for a gratitude prayer, although when we do, our lives and the lives of those around us are transformed. I remember years ago in a shamanic circle we were all asked to care for a particular spirit over a period of time, as part of our training. One woman spoke up and said “oh no, not another puppy!” And we all got it. How can we possibly add one more being to our already full lives of care taking. The answer came over time to those of us who attempted the project. We expand. We get bigger so that we can hold more and give more. And that capacity to expand goes beyond our wildest imaginations so there’s no worry of over expansion! I just finished Yongey Mingyur Rinpoche’s memoir “Falling in Love with the World”, where he demonstrates the human’s mind blowing capacity for expansion. This expansion always embodies more love.

So the spirit of the fall, as I have come to see it, is a kind preparation for winter death where we let go of contraction and start to expand deeper and wider into the mystery. The distractions of summer are winding down and the preparations for winter, the true time of wise open emptiness, are beginning. All of a sudden we find ourselves in moments of quiet and space where we can just be. With the darker evenings, there may be less to do. As this happens it may be comforting to know that we are not alone and are surrounded by those that love us even if we don’t see them.


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