We move and meditate to sacred music including music that is shared at Calvary by the Sea on Sunday mornings. We are framing the Fall 2016 session ofmusic from this time of preparation and celebration in our church year. Thank you to Calvary by the sea choir, congregation, Ina Young organist and pianist, and Tom Poole, Calvary by the Sea Liturgical Arts Director for the music. Compliments to Erin Day and Fletcher Young, sound engineers, for supporting our use of this music.
Once long ago, and maybe far away, the first hurt happened.
It was was easy then, when the hurt happened the response was a heart-centered response of the mind, body, and spirit. When we were much younger, hurts happened to us and we responded. When I experience the loss of someone, someplace, something, some….. I now don’t see them as totally gone, I see them as always being fluttering in me, a butterfly of a memory. Sometimes the Butterflies affect me emotionally and it can be overwhelming, joy, sadness, fear, peace or most anything. I see this as a sweet memory, spreading it’s wings filling me, sometimes I hurt everywhere, or I’m filled with peaceful joy. But whatever the butterfly tickles I need to feel it.
Long ago you experienced your first loss. I invite you to close your eyes and envision that first loss that moment, whatever it might be, a person, a pet, a place, a tooth. ofFind your moment, now if your moment is a butterfly what does it look like?
My first memory butterfly is pale yellow and it was just my size at the time, it is the memory of hurt caused by having to move across country with my family, when I was 5. Scared, confused, as life went on I grew in all ways, always from the heart, mentally, spiritually, emotionally, and of course physical changes too. But I changed and the butterfly from this moment stayed the same.
Sometimes this memory touches me again, a connection to that moment, or perhaps as I face a change, it adds to the emotions I’m having in the moment, I see it as a butterfly resting on my heart. I’ve collected many butterflies as I’m sure you have too. All kinds of shapes and sizes, and I’ve grown around them till they take up less space. We are more of companions, a way to co-exist and enrich.
Dancing Butterfly Pulelehua
Do you know what the collective noun is for Butterflys? Kaleidoscope. Really. It is. Love it!
The most recent addition to my internal kaleidoscope is my sweet son, Shane. He stopped breathing. Has it been 26 weeks or is it 11? I don’t want to know, or count, I know it’s been forever and a not even a minute. The butterfly I see for Shane is a giant blue iridescent butterfly that overwhelms me and takes over sometimes. It’s always here, but sometimes its wings are quiet. Already I can feel myself growing, but not away from, I’m growing around and including this lovely, horrible, memory of a life full or faith, struggle, joy, love, pain,disappointment, creating, hugs, music-ing, dancing, loving, but ended too soon.
Oh. I have a toy kaleidoscope that is so beautiful but created from the broken pieces of glass. That is how if feels when the butterflies of memories are all shook up from a life adventure. Like rubbing broken glass.
Today I feel like a butterfly. Memories leak from my eyes. Sometimes, with a breath and a moment, laughter might turn the tears to rainbows of love. So when my eyes are leaking, please leave me be… Treat me like a butterfly, lovingly watch me and let me be free to flutter by. Of course sometimes the butterfly lands on you and rests in your gentle support. That is wonderful too, but wait for the butterfly to come to you.
Close your eyes again. Do you see, feel, sense a butterfly memory? Or something like that? A fluttering gentle touch. Or maybe yours is a different image.
For me when I get overwhelmed by one memory, I close my eyes and see the kaleidoscope and somehow I know it will all be okay again.
So my dear ones, would you be a butterfly for me? Take a scarf and feel the first butterfly memory of feeling you have. And let’s dance it in this space, as we sing. Turn turn turn..
I’ll be a butterfly for you.
Come dance with the Kaleidoscoping hearts
Love and Light, Pulelehua
Welcoming Prayer is a tool to help quickly center and hopefully reduce painful emotional responses.
Listen to a 2.5 minute introduction to the welcoming prayer :
It’s purpose is to help one “let go and let God,” naturally heal old emotional wounds, and show you better paths to take in life. People who know how to effectively use Welcoming Prayer can often quickly recover from an upsetting situation within just a few seconds. For example, it can be used to help you sleep by clearing the mind of bad feelings that wake you up in the middle of the night. Practitioners also eventually start seeing life more clearly because they naturally repeat less blind, unconscious, survival reactions.
A variety of emotional & physical knee jerk reactions were stored during childhood deep within your body to help you “survive.” An example might be the fight or flight reactions to unusual noises. Many of these automatic reactions are quite useful for dealing with simple physical threats; however, in a more complex world, blind reactions often make the situation worse.
Welcoming Prayer is designed to lead to better cooperation between your big-me, your higher self, and your little-me, the survival conditioning that has accumulated over time within your body. By welcoming blind emotional reactions for what they are — automatic survival mechanisms — one begins to see them from an observer’s viewpoint rather than from a victim’s viewpoint.
Welcoming Prayer starts by deeply experiencing feelings within your body and then welcoming your increased awareness of these feelings. This awareness naturally leads to healing and to better solutions. Letting go of your little-me‘s death grip on these feelings allows them to naturally pass by and disappear, like leaves floating by on a stream.
Thank you to Thought-Management tools, tips, ideas, discussion
Note: The commentary above relies heavily on and includes quotations from these resources. Look them over yourself.
- learningtopray.blogspot.com – Good background quotes from authoritative sources such as Thomas Keating.
- davidsonumc.org – “The reason for paying attention to your body and your interior state is that the mind deceives. … There is never a thought, feeling or emotion that does not have a corresponding body sensation. Each experience is imprinted in every cell of our body.”
- meaningandauthenticity.blogspot.com – Excerpts from Cynthia Borgeault’s book Centering Prayer and Inner Awakening.
- bustedhalo.com – Commentary on Welcoming Prayer.
- contemplativeoutreach.org – The practice of the welcoming prayer by the Contemplative Outreach organization.
- Further discussion of Welcoming Prayer