As we enter Spring and the holy traditions that surround us - I am most familiar with Lent, Easter and Passover - let us orient ourselves to this wonderful season of rebirth.
While at yoga last Saturday, our instructor, the owner of YogaSoup - my new yoga home - discussed the various traditions and addressed how yoga is about death and rebirth. In fact, we have that opportunity each and every day. He talked about the teachings of the Buddha and Jesus, not in religious terms, but more about their archetype and how we connect to this universal energy of love.
The next day was Palm Sunday, a favorite of mine. I have led music groups over the years during this passionate service and personally reflect upon the upcoming week of Jesus' life - how he was to make this journey into an area of the world where his concepts were not universally accepted and where he threatened the domineering leadership of the time. His journey was not for himself but for the world at that time.
The story of the Passion is a beautiful depiction of how to connect with our higher selves - that self that is not caught up in competition and dominance, but more in cooperation, compassion and respect for all of humanity.
In Indian and indigenous culture, that message is extended to our earth - the plants, trees, animals - and the magic that they bring into our lives. I have more to learn about this culture and am proud to say that I have American Indian on both sides of my family. My Mom was so proud of our heritage and I recall as a child visiting with my relatives. I remember Uncle Art and Uncle Walter - beautiful sea blue eyes, copper-toned skin and high cheek bones. We enjoyed these festive family gatherings.
As we enter these next few days, my wish for all is to take a few moments of reflection - to be grateful for these ancient traditions rich in story that support our own transformation; to be in awe of the budding plants and flowers that will "feed" our bodies over these months and will be a feast for our eyes with beautiful color; and to develop love and compassion for ourselves and those we see and do not see.
With love, Julie