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     Awen Environments

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Snowflake's Story: a Look at Aconite

Posted on January 15, 2014 at 8:14 AM Comments comments (3)
Sometimes animals cross your path and you truly wonder whether their visit was just to help them recover or there's a more profound message in it for you. This story is one such experience. The first week after the 2014 New Year started out with a polar vortex that not only hit this region of WNY very hard, but many areas throughout the country. It's times like those with such extreme frigid temperatures that make you wonder how wild creatures even survive at all, but somehow they seem to manage. Sometimes though, a helping human hand makes all the difference.

The second day of our blizzard had me letting our dogs out and filling bird feeders amidst -6 degrees Fahrenheit and intense winds.  The birds were anxiously waiting for anything that would help them make it through the extreme temperature.  It was the coldest weather I'd experienced in this region in years. We Western New Yorkers are typically pretty tough, being used to this kind of weather and somehow we always seem to make the best out of the situation, but this was intense weather. 

That morning as I moved toward a feeder hung near one of our honey locust trees, I saw a bluejay covered with snow and seemingly lifeless.  His eyes were closed and the only thing that seemed to indicate some life force was the fact one of his feet was tightly clenched into a fist.  Somehow I sensed there might be hope as I scooped him up in my gloved hand and brought him inside. My son was home from school and I told him to warm the bird against his chest in the event he might still be alive.  I went back outside to continue with my morning activities.

When I came back in, my son told me the bluejay was still alive and breathing.  I told him to keep the bird warm until he noticed more life and I gave him a flannel pillowcase to wrap the bird in.  Ordinarily a heating pad is used in wildlife rehabilitation, but I knew in this instance, it was the connection with a living being that this bird needed, even if that being was human and perhaps maybe because he was human.  As I had hoped, my son's warmth and heart intention to bring this bird back from the brink of death, was exactly what this bluejay needed.

After some time, I thought the bird might be ready for some medicine, so I tried giving the homeopathic remedy Aconite in a syringe with some water, but his mouth was tightly clenched shut. Instead I rubbed some Rescue Remedy on his head as the vibration on the skin is often enough to calm an injured animal.  After about a half hour, my son called me from the other room saying the bluejay had put its beak around his finger.  

I knew it was time to give the bird the Aconite it needed to help recover fully from the shock of nearly dying. I'd seen various songbirds and mammals recover quickly from the shock of being hit by a car, after being given Aconite, which is the vibrational imprint of the flower Monkshood.  Aconite is the remedy for shock and works well in extreme cases with wildlife and people. For some reason the medicine of this plant works with the trauma of shock held within the body and acts like a key opening a lock. It can even be used for injuries in the past.

I checked the bluejay and decided he was warm and alert enough to be given some Aconite since his eyes were now open. Because his beak was wrapped around my son's finger, it wasn't difficult to get a syringe in his mouth.  The bluejay swallowed and I knew we just had to wait now.  Again, this is one of those moments when you see the power of homeopathy in full force because you know wild animals don't respond to placebos.  It is unfortunate that those who do not understand homeopathy criticize it as having a placebo effect, because I've seen it work in a variety of situations with wildlife and my son when he was a toddler.  This time, within minutes, the bluejay seemed more vital and looked like he was ready to be transferred to a recovery cage.  It was obvious that continuing to hold him would only invite more stress.

So I transferred the bluejay to his cage and put some sunflower seeds and peanuts in a dish for him, with another dish of water and Rescue Remedy. Several hours later he was already eating and looking like he was ready to continue living the life of an energetic bluejay once again. His recovery had been nothing short of miraculous for us.

Much to our surprise, he even managed to temporarily escape from his cage while putting in more food.  The flight however, quickly tired and stressed him, and at that point it wasn't yet clear whether this was due to a low overall energy or just the stress of our trying to catch him.  It was probably a little of both, but it was obvious he wasn't yet ready for release and the weather was still brutally cold, so release wasn't even an option yet.  My son decided to name the bluejay "Snowflake" although I thought "Blizzard" might have been more appropriate. I gave Snowflake another dose of Aconite and waited another day.

There's a fine line in wildlife rehabilitation between releasing a wild animal too soon before they are ready to be on their own and keeping a wild animal in captivity too long which can also kill them due to stress.  It's always a tough choice for me and many others who help wildlife.  This was no exception, but I waited a few days and I decided to release him exactly 48 hours after I had brought him in from the cold.  Although it was still a cold day, the temperature had increased somewhat and the sun was shining brilliantly.  Snowflake immediately flew to the top of our old maple tree and obviously enjoyed his new found freedom.  I had no doubt in my mind, we had chosen the perfect day for his release.

I know that my son will always remember the day we saved a bluejay from the bitter cold during the Blizzard of 2014 and I know I will too.  My son learned that sometimes things aren't always what they appear to be and sometimes, even when things seem hopeless, you might just save someone's life if you try.  I also know that it's not always the outcome that matters, but the intention and the care that we give to someone in need that counts in the overall scheme of things.  Although I know that wild animals die everyday out in Nature, I think it's worth the effort to help a creature in need when they cross your path.

The same day we released the bluejay, I found a tiny Chickadee frozen in the snow not far from our beehive and another bird feeder.  It saddened me that I didn't find this tiny songbird at the right time. Chickadees are one of my favorite songbirds because I love to watch them and admire their high energy, strength and resilience during the coldest of winters. I know I was not meant to find this little one. It was his time to meet the Creator. Two wild birds and one blizzard with two completely different outcomes. Divine timing in life is everything and sometimes... so is seizing the moment.

Blessings of Gratitude!

2014 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.


Clear Clutter, Clear the Past

Posted on January 1, 2014 at 11:11 AM Comments comments (6)
"Your sacred space is where you can find yourself again and again."
--Joseph Campbell

Clearing clutter was never a difficult thing for me to do, as I always kept my home neat and organized with everything in its place.  That was until I became a mother, before I was seriously concerned with environmentalism and before I had such a complex life filled with loads of responsibilities.  It was also before technology reached the point it's at today and before being on the internet had become an integral part of my life.  It's easy to keep your space clear when you lead a simple life and you live alone, but what about when you're handling multiple tasks on a daily basis and you have a family of humans (or animals) to take care of?  Then the challenge becomes much more daunting.
 
We also live in times that are fast paced and filled with chaos and uncertainty.  How do you cope with the constant barrage of emails, personal and professional challenges, as well as things that we as humans acquire over the course of our lives? And how do you balance the need for utility versus things that you love?  How do you justify throwing things out when you know that you can reuse them in more creative ways or they will become useful again, if and when you move into that perfect house? Believing that the home you are currently living in is just temporary does not help matters.  It may be because of your job or because your current home doesn't have the plot of land your truly want or just because your dreams are to live in another region at some point of your life.  The real question is how does it make you feel right now?  That is what matters most because it's affecting your energy and the way you live your life in this present moment.   
 
There was a time when I was very hard on my clients immediately pointing out areas of clutter in their home which resulted in stagnation and negative energy in their lives.  It was so easy for me to do because I was the observer and the analyst.  Much has changed since then, in particular, my lifestyle and what is important to me.  But what about walking my talk now?  So, I've been taking serious inventory of how I live my life and what areas need improvement.  The process has been exhausting and sometimes even overwhelming.  I have been shocked at times at how far I've let my living and organizational standards go simply because I've been too busy, have had too many fires to put out and just got caught up in the mundane activities of life. Sometimes I've just been exhausted and needed to do something that pleased my soul and physical body.  Those were times I would simply ignore all that needed to be done.
 
The key to tackling seemingly overwhelming clutter is to deal with it one step at a time.  Your home (or your situation) didn't get to the point it's at overnight and so you can't expect to change it overnight.  You can, however, address your clutter fairly quickly if you just keep chipping away at the issue, one piece at a time.  Each day I'd work on my clutter in some manner and every day I got closer to my goal.  I continue to do this, one area at a time.  A big challenge for me this past autumn was how do I get my car back in my garage for the winter with all the clutter I had stacked inside?  Being a gardener, it was filled with all sorts of tools and supplies.  At one point I truly thought I'd never be able to deal with all the things  I'd accumulated in time before the cold weather set in, but I did.  

Clearing this clutter involved several layers of planning which ultimately improved the quality of my life.  I also went through a very intense internal process that included a lot of foresight and planning to achieve my goals.  It felt so much better once I put my plan into motion and saw the results.  I think back now and wonder how I could have put up with this clutter for as long as I did and wonder how I could have held onto so many things.  I know that part of this was that I always planned to do more activities which ultimately I never had time for.  Investing in a huge shed which I turned into a studio was part of my organizational plan and it made a big difference because we were able to organize our tools, gardening supplies, as well as materials for future projects.
 
Clutter is stagnant energy in your home and it can truly affect your mindset.  It brought my energy and perspective down every day as I looked at my clutter filled spaces.  Sometimes I just chose to ignore them, but inside it really bothered me because I knew it wasn't acceptable to who I truly am.  I had strayed simply because I had been pressed for time and other things had to be addressed.  Now I have more time, but I also had to make the time to address the problem areas. Although I began this process in the fall, winter months can actually be a great time to deal with clutter because we're indoors more and we are affected by the energy more readily.
 
In November I attended a breakfast meeting where I asked the instructor how do we address our challenges these days and find the time to do all the things we need to do and those that are important to us.  I told her of my overwhelm which I felt quite often.  Her response was to create a to do list which you review every day and then you eliminate 5 things that just aren't so important.  I thought this sounded simple enough, but it still didn't address doing the things I loved which at times seemed trivial.  To that she replied that what made me feel good is well worth the time because it puts you in a different space-- one of joy. That's really what matters on a daily basis and it will get you through the challenging times.

I bought her book that day and later read about a similar question that was addressed in a slightly different way. The response was to each night speak to your higher self and make a mental note of all the things you need to do the next day and then you simply turn it over before you go to sleep.  During the day you will find that your attention will be focused exactly where it needs to be and the rest is not so important. Not surprisingly, I have found this process to be quite effective and I've found myself to have more clarity and direction (when I remember to take the time to do this).
 
At this point I am still addressing my clutter, one room at a time and sometimes only one closet or drawer at a time, but I am truly feeling the difference in how I approach my day and how I manage my activities and responsibilities on a regular basis.  I can sense how the energy of the house is changing and aligning more with who I am and how I intend my life to me.  And yes, I still have days where I seem to accomplish nothing and everything piles up, but I know there's always tomorrow to get back on track.

Clutter issues are significant because they reflect innermost feelings and beliefs about ourselves, our lives and our future.  It's easy to dwell on the past and unpleasant memories if you are surrounded by constant reminders that you subconsciously associate with unhappy or stress filled times. Releasing things that you no longer find useful or enjoy creates the space for new energies to come in, thereby setting the foundation for change and the manifestation of your goals.  Creating your own sacred space is part of letting go of the past, releasing that which no longer serves you and creating a new future.
 
New Year's Blessings of Renewal!
 
2014 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.
 
 
 

Beyond the Visible

Posted on November 6, 2013 at 2:24 PM Comments comments (2)
"Coincidence is God's way of remaining anonymous."
--Albert Einstein, "The World As I See It"
 
There are times when it may seem that very little or absolutely nothing is going in the direction that you would hope.  Despite your best efforts, things do not appear to be falling in place as you had planned.  That's when you need to let go and focus on what uplifts your spirits and makes you feel connected.  Maybe you need to dance with abandon to music that you love or take a walk in the park or on the beach and just feel the beauty and power of Nature.  Sometimes just spending time with a child or an animal companion can make all the difference.  Finding joy and peace in those moments is key to moving past a seeming standstill.
 
Sometimes we are being held back for a reason.  The timing just isn't right and other things need to happen before what you desire comes to pass or perhaps something better manifests itself.  Trusting this process is a huge part of remaining grounded and not falling into the abyss of frustration and despair.  We don't always know what's best for us or the sacred contracts we may have made before coming into this lifetime.  Yet there is a grand perfection that exists, if we can just be patient, listen and be aware.
 
Often times while working with animals I have had to hold them back to keep them safe in order to ensure their complete recovery before being released into the wild or even outside of a cage into my home.  I can feel their frustration as their desire for freedom to do their own thing is great.  Nevertheless, I know that were I to release them when they desire, it is very likely that more harm could come to them or their chances for survival would be lessened.
 
I think the Universe and the Creator do the same thing.  They guide us when we are lost and hold us back when we would make wrong decisions or plunge into something that is not in our best interest.  Divine perfection exists when we allow the flow of life to manifest in its own time and allow ourselves to be guided by the sometimes very subtle nuances of Nature and Spirit.  Sometimes a chance conversation with a stranger can bring the greatest of insights and clarity.
 
I can't say that I have all the answers as I struggle with these very things each day while facing this changing world, but my faith is strong and I'm confident that the way will be shown to me at the appropriate time regardless of which situations I may encounter.  I've simply done far too much work within all aspects of my life to give up on what I know to be true and how I intend my future to be, to go back to an old way of being or doing though it may seem easier or more comfortable at times. 
 
The waves of adjustment continue as the Earth goes through her growing pains releasing unbalanced energies via earthquakes, floods and other natural disasters.  With every movement of the Earth we are affected by the shifts in energetic grids across the planet.  Don't think that an opening in the Earth's crust thousands of miles away is not having an affect on you or a wildfire on another continent, because it is.  And if you're prone to sudden bursts of emotion and irritability or extreme exhaustion, know that as the Earth releases pent up energy, so are you.  Each person feels these changes in their own way.
 
Now, more than ever we need to focus on what brings us joy, what uplifts our spirit and what makes us stronger and our energy more vibrant.  If you are finding yourself being dragged down by discordant energies and the chaos or drama of others, find a way to bring yourself back into alignment with Nature and your true sense of self.  Everytime we do something to keep ourselves grounded, we are helping this planet and the planetary shifts taking place.  Be a lighthouse amidst the storms or a tree that bends with the winds but anchors itself firmly, don't go running after that which you cannot save because it will not serve you.
 
I believe that 2014 will bring new insights, greater opportunities and also many challenges as we face our intentions, our outmoded ways of being and living, and we all become clearer as to what we want out of life.  Find renewal in the silence of the night and strength in the warm rays of the morning sun.  See the sparkle of the crystalline essence of a snowflake and plant your seeds of awakening in the sacred space of your soul.  Now is the time to release old patterns and prepare for whatever you feel is significant.  Trust that your choices will determine your future.
 
Blessings of Clarity!
 
2013 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.

Restoring the Light: a Look at Belladonna

Posted on October 11, 2013 at 10:35 AM Comments comments (4)
If you practice homeopathy, there are surely remedies that are your favorites.  I have several, but the one that always helps me with extreme situations is Belladonna.  When I first began my studies in homeopathy, my teacher talked about the pictures of several remedies and one of them was Belladonna. What I always remembered about her lecture was how  Belladonna,  because it was made from the vibration of a poisonous, psychotic plant, had the ability to "restore light from darkness."  That picture has always stayed with me over the more than 15 years that I've been using homeopathy. Over and over this concept has presented itself in a variety of interesting ways and I know for that reason this is one of my allies whose capabilities never ceases to amaze me.
 
Most recently I had an extreme situation that occurred after having my 7 month old shiba inu puppy spayed after being vaccinated with a rabies shot one week prior.  I will never know exactly what caused such an extreme reaction in her behavior, whether it was the combination of the rabies shot with the morphine that was used after surgery, or whether the anesthesia itself caused a shift in her consciousness.  It is possible that all of the things together combined with her sensitivity, caused such an extreme shift in behavior that we thought we'd never have our sweet, fun loving puppy back with us.
 
Although the rabies vaccination passed without any noticeable problem the week prior, as soon as we picked up Sachiko (Japanese for child of happiness), we noticed she was very lethargic and in a great deal of pain because every time we even touched her, she cried out.  She refused to eat anything but a small treat that evening and even that she eventually threw back up. She slept through the night, probably due to her pain medication, and the following day she raced around as though she was back to normal. It wasn't until evening of the next day that we noticed an unusual change in her behavior. Sachi started to become extremely irritable and began growling at our other dog.  She also began twisting and contorting her body in obvious discomfort.
 
Other extremes have included when my son was a toddler and he developed such a severe headache that he was sobbing and asked me to take his head off because it hurt so much.  Another was when he was in kindergarten and came off the bus one day severely traumatized by an older child who had bullied him.  His mind became delirious as he raved and only Belladonna could comfort him.  In both instances, my son went from either extreme pain or emotional trauma to tranquility and sleep in a matter of minutes.  It's hard to imagine this type of response, if you haven't experienced it yourself.
 
Repeatedly Belladonna has worked in a variety of ways and situations where perception and/or pain were severe with an extremely sudden onset.  Despite Belladonna being a psychotropic plant in it's original state, the energy pattern held within the homeopathic remedy is able to transform the person or animals from a state of darkness to one of light, clarity and health.  It simply is one of my greatest allies.
 
Blessings of Health and Clarity!
 
2013 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.
 
 
 
 

Bee Swarming: a Message of Rebirth

Posted on August 6, 2013 at 1:10 PM Comments comments (10)
This morning I went out to check my original beehive and found that half of the bees had swarmed with the old queen.  The steady streams of workers were no longer there, though I could still see bees inside the hive.  Although I never witnessed the swarm, I knew something had changed and I felt like a piece of me had gone with the bees.  It had been over a year since they had arrived and interestingly, today is a new moon in my sun sign of Leo.  Somehow I cannot see this as a coincidence, as my birthday is also next week. 
 
This original hive was my initiation into the realm of bees.  They taught me how to overcome my fears through working with the hive, they taught me about the mistakes I made along the way (and there were many) and they taught my son and me how to develop a love and respect for beekeeping, though it is not an easy art as it requires time, patience and dedication to get it right.  It truly is about being a steward and developing a relationship with the bees and not about 'having' or exploiting them.  Had I known how much it entailed, I probably would never have gotten involved.  It's like that with many things in life, but in your heart you know that what you're doing is what you're supposed to be doing and you continue because a love gradually ensues and it envelopes you as each day your relationship grows and you look forward to it's existence and you can no longer imagine life without this passion.
 
The bees have become my allies in so many ways.  They have taught me my priorities, how to conquer my fears and how to be prepared during these tumultuous times.  Each step along the way has been like a milestone toward a better awareness of the beehive and how it functions in unison as one being comprised of many collaborators each fulfilling an important role.  Though I'm saddened by the loss of half of my bees from my original hive, I am also happy and concerned for their welfare as they venture out into the unknown searching for a new home. I'm told they have three days to find one, otherwise they perish.
 
Gunther Hauk explains this process so well in his book "Toward Saving the Honeybee."  Contrary to what has been done in the last century and the ways of modern beekeeping practices that often seek to exploit the honeybee, swarming is a natural process that is necessary to maintain the well being and vitality of the hive.  Ironically, just when everything is fine at home, the food is stocked and the bees might be able to rest on their laurels, a new queen is created and half of the colony leaves with the old queen in search of a new home. 
 
This is in sharp contrast to what we as humans strive for and live out during our existence on this planet.  And yet, perhaps the bees' message is even more relevant during these times of upheaval and change-- searching out into the unknown, into territory that is at times both exhilarating and terrifying not knowing what you will find.  Simply knowing that this is how it needs to be.  Gunther Hauk and Rudolf Steiner talk about the swarming of bees as a rebirth of the hive.  In essence it truly is when you understand the complexities and perfection that exist within a honeybee colony.
 
Interestingly, the swarming of my bees was part of a series of experiences I had involving both my original hive and a second hive that I acquired as a result of a swarm that we captured one evening hanging from one of our pine trees.  At the time, I thought this swarm was my own, but later I came to see that it had probably been from a nearby property that also had bees, as I could tell that my original hive was still intact and the bees in the second hive were much more docile. 
 
So, this past weekend I had to correct a mistake that I had made with my second hive-- that of not being prepared.  I did not have additional beekeeping supplies ready in the event of a swarm and so when it happened, I was scrambling to put things together having to borrow supplies from a mentor friend and buy new ones.  Because the main hive box was not my own, I would eventually have to switch this out with my own and that's what I did this weekend with trepidation because it meant taking everything apart and reorganizing the bees by myself.  I had to do it alone because my son was away on a trip and my mentor was also unavailable.
 
What ensued was rather complex and unexpected.  Amidst opening the hive and seeing the queen for the first time since I had begun beekeeping, I was so intensely focused on what I was doing and keeping the queen and workers safe, that I completely lost track of time.  I became one with the beehive.  They were part of me and I was part of them.  It was as though I had gone on a shamanic journey, though I did not set out with this intention.  Yes, I was functioning as a normal human being going through the activities of beekeeping, but at some point which I think was upon encountering the queen, I went into an altered state of consciousness and remember little from what happened thereafter.  I just know that when I had everything rearranged and reassembled, I had no recollection of many of the things that I had done.  As I spent time in my gardens, for several hours thereafter, I could not remember what exactly had happened to me.
 
Simon Buxton talks about altered states of consciousness achieved while working with bees in his book "The Shamanic Way of the Bee: Ancient Wisdom and Healing Practices of the Bee Masters."  It is a profound book and one that at times is difficult to conceptualize and understand, if you have not experienced anything similar.  It is nevertheless, a delving into the mystical and complex world of bees that we as humans have yet to understand fully.  Though I do believe that ancient cultures once understood the honeybee much better than we do today.  The honeybee has long been revered for its ability to work in such complex unison and produce such a 'nectar of the Gods' from within it's own body via the perfection of Nature and the beauty, complexities and high vibration of flowers. 
 
I have spent a great deal of time observing the bees in my gardens and I can say that the relationship that exists between bee and flower is truly a love affair as I have ever seen.  The fervor with which the bees gather pollen and nectar is really quite interesting to observe as they both depend on one another for their very existence-- the bee to create honey to feed its queen and colony, and the flower to perpetuate it's life cycle.  What can we as humans create, if our very survival depends on it?
 
And so, my experiences with the bees have come full circle.  I have experienced the joy of capturing a new swarm to create yet another hive to pollinate our gardens and offer us the rich golden rewards of honey--  gifts of which I have given to family, friends and neighbors.  And I have also experienced the sudden anguish and sadness over losing part of a hive due to my inability to attend to the needs of the hive in a timely manner by not providing them with adequate space for their colony. 
 
Did I error greatly by not putting on another hive box in a timely manner or was the rebirth of the original hive meant to be to serve as a signpost for a new life that is beginning for all of us-- the bees on their journey with their beloved queen and I having completed a year of honeybee stewardship and many, many years of healing the lands where I have lived, ready to face what new surprises lie before me in this ever changing world.
 
Blessings on Your Journey!
 
2013 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.
 
 
 
 

The Laws of the Universe: A Test of Faith

Posted on April 13, 2013 at 11:33 AM Comments comments (3)
Because I'm highly sensitive to my environment and live in alignment with Nature, I feel the Earth rhythms more acutely than most.  Each time there's an earthquake or some other natural or man-made disaster, I've begun feeling strange a few days in advance.  It's my internal cue that something is up again.  I don't always know what it is, but I feel the shifting of the vibration of the planet.  We are all affected by shifts in consciousness and planetary disasters, whether we choose to acknowledge it or not.  The anger and fears of others can quickly spiral into your own negativity, if you're not careful.
 
As the Earth goes through her rebalancing process, the shifts in consciousness continue and the results become more apparent depending on where you are in your level of awareness.  The old ways are dismantling and making way for the new.  All that which is not in alignment with the Earth is being revealed so that we may take the proper actions to right the wrongs that affect us all.  No individual or corporation is immune to the Laws of the Universe.
 
One thing that has become more obvious to me is when things that aren't 'right' get balanced in terms of universal energies and it can happen in a variety of ways.  In other words, something that seems unfair to you, suddenly gets straightened out through no major action of your own.  I experienced two completely different incidents that drew my attention and caused me to think about how eventually things get balanced out, even when you choose not to act or have no control over a situation. 
  
The first occurred while I was shopping with my son at a local grocery store that normally has a pretty friendly environment.  I was about to enter in the check out line behind a woman who was almost finished, when a man walked up without a cart whom I thought was her husband.  When I moved in closer, he suddenly called his son from behind me and asked him to bring their cart over.   I  point blank asked him what he was doing and without waiting for a reply, went off to another aisle.  I forgot the entire incident as I paid for my groceries and left.
 
As I was loading my car, suddenly I heard someone talking behind me and as I turned to look, it was the man I had spoken to at the check out line.  He commented that despite all "my bitching," I had gotten out ahead of him anyway.  I was shocked to find him behind me and I couldn't believe how he'd acted in front of two young children.  My reply was "I guess things turn out the way they're supposed to" and I turned away.  I had been the one wronged and yet he chose to make an issue of what happened and continue his negative behavior.
 
What's scary is there's people out there who are so stressed out that they can make a really big deal out of nothing, not recognizing their own inappropriate actions.  These incidents will only increase as tensions rise around the world and energies become increasingly challenging.  The only thing you can control is your own reactions to people like this.
 
A completely different scenario involved my son's intramural hockey team at a local boys' club.  The season started out promising, but as weeks went on, the team began losing because inevitably children from the other teams would not show up and my son's teammates would either have to play on the other team or an adult would have to play goalie for the opposing team.  While I know the point of these games is to have fun and learn to support others, it does become disheartening as your team continues to lose seemingly through no fault of your own.  Finally during a playoff game, all the team members showed up and my son's team won as they had deserved.   Although they didn't win the championship, they at least were recognized and validated for their abilities at the end of the season.
 
While both of these incidents were relatively minor, they nevertheless represent to me a powerful force within the Universe that affects all life and actions generated by humans.  Sometimes the things you want the most don't come to pass, but then you are graced with something even more amazing than what you imagined.  As long as we are clear about our intentions and make choices based on integrity and authenticity, we can be assured that things will work out exactly the way they are supposed to in accordance with the Laws of the Universe. 
 
Divine retribution is a powerful thing.  Staying grounded even amidst the most trying of situations can ultimately lead to the intended destination with the Universe at your side.   

Blessings of Faith!
 
 
Copyright 2013 Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.




Moving through Fear: a Recent Journey

Posted on November 28, 2012 at 4:47 PM Comments comments (3)
Those who contemplate the beauty of the Earth find reserves of strength that will endure as long as life lasts. ~Rachel Carson
 
Sometimes we take journeys without knowing their outcome.  We forge ahead led by some innate knowledge or compass that defies our intellect.  I've had alot of these experiences throughout my life often not thinking ahead about the consequences of my actions and sometimes even questioning my own sanity.  There have been times that I have caused myself additional hardship or responsibilities, and other times that there was no doubt in my mind that I was divinely guided to do something unusual or travel to a certain destination.  All of these activities and journeys have contributed to the wisdom I hold today although it didn't always make sense while I was experiencing it.
 
During these times of upheaval and instability, we will all be given opportunities to trust our own instincts and intuitions, leading us often on a path that may be quite uncomfortable at first and perhaps contrary to our own intellect and sense of stability.  We may even find ourselves coming head on with our innermost fears and insecurities.  When I was in my 20's I didn't think twice about traveling around the country or to a destination overseas, often times at a moment's notice.  Some of those destinations brought joy while others created challenges and difficult situations.  Nevertheless, being a free spirit at the time, I didn't think much about how my own actions had contributed to the consequences I found myself in.  I also know however, that so many of these journeys were divinely guided.
 
Now that I have a young son, a house and animals that require my care, I think twice before I travel.  Over the years, my travel has been very minimal except for some training programs within the US, short day trips to surrounding areas, and vacations in Canada at my favorite lake.   One thing is certain, it's not so easy for me to leave anymore because my responsibilities hold me back.  Often times I long for the free and easy lifestyle I used to have before all of my commitments.  Every so often my short trips provide an outlet for the adventure I once knew, but traveling alone no longer provides the excitement it once did.  Actually it often creates a great deal of anxiety within me, knowing I will need to face the unknown one more time and miss the comfort and stability of my own environment.
 
Recently I had the opportunity to venture out on a journey based on intuition and a heartfelt desire to accomplish a goal. There were many signs along the way prompting me in this particular direction when initially I thought it was just a whim that I would never make happen.  It so happened that this journey I found myself on preceded the destruction and turmoil brought about by Hurricane Sandy, the storm that devastated the northeastern coastal areas of the US. My trip led me close to this region although it was several days before the storm actually hit and the town I would visit was actually a few hours away from the severely hit areas.  I had intended to pursue the trip the following weekend but weather reports prompted me to leave one week earlier.
 
It would seem that the name of the game these days is facing our fears and moving through the anxiety we feel when we are faced with choices.  Sometimes these choices are deliberate and other times they are seemingly coincidental.  As I headed out on a cold, rainy day, a number of things prevented me from leaving at my intended time including forgetting to charge my cell phone the previous night.  Leaving with a dead cell phone was not an option, so I had to wait until my phone at least partially charged.  After finally getting on the road it didn't take long before I stopped for coffee, something I only occasionally drink.  I don't know whether it was the combined caffeine and sugar that suddenly sent a rush through my body or just the unsteadiness of my car on the slippery slick roads, but suddenly I felt a wave of such fear pass through my body that I felt almost paralized and unable to complete what I set out to do.  All sorts of negative thoughts started to play in my mind including the condition of my tires which were not the best and the possibilitiy that my car needed steering fluid, as well as the uncertainty of what I would find at the end of my destination.  I just did not feel like I had control over my normally trustworthy car or even my senses, as the car seemed to be slipping and sliding at the slightest touch.
 
My fear had become so overwhelming that I knew I had to stop and pull over to at least check the condition of my tires and if nothing else, to ground myself.  Having taken my rescue dogs with me for safety and lack of someone to leave them with, I took the girls for a walk after checking my tires.    The walk in the cold air amidst the pine trees revived my senses and was just what I needed to shake the fear that had taken over my body.  There seemed to be nothing obviously wrong with my car.  I had apparently just tapped into a number of possibilities which invoked my innermost fears, all which stemmed from the uncertainty of my destination and the fact I was taking a 6 hr. road trip alone at this point in my life. 
 
Because I often feel premonitions of Earth changes through my body and am tremendously affected by solar flares usually before they hit the planet's atmosphere, it wasn't until days later that I would fully understand the implications of the powerful and destructive energies of the hurricane that would eventually devastate a region in the direct vicinity of the town I was driving to.  I know now that somehow I had connected to the fear that would overcome a part of this country and change the world as we know it on that 29th of October.  I had felt the shifting of electromagnetic Earth frequencies and it's impact course through my body.  I just didn't understand what was going on at the time.  Fear needs to be faced in order for it to be healed and released from our bodies.  Although many of us were safe and far away from the devastation this storm would bring, the shifting of energies affected all of us in a myriad of ways.  Some of this influence will only be fully understood in years to come.
 
Surprisingly, my journey into the unknown proved to be very synchronistic.  Not only was the intention of my trip successful and what I accomplished felt right, but I also experienced a magical day.  There were many unusual connections to people in a town that had once been created to form a utopia for those escaping religious persecution. 
 
Given what I know about sacred places, there were obviously unique Earth energies located in this quaint town where I spent the weekend.  The history of the picturesque landscape and architectural details was just too unusual to overlook.  The purpose of my trip felt so right and I knew I had been divinely guided.  Nothing could have been more rewarding that weekend than driving home from this trip knowing that I was meant to arrive at this special destination and accomplish what I set out to do.  Little did I know at the time, that only a few hours away from the quaint town I had visited, a storm would change the course of history of many lives for years to come.
 
And the day came when the risk it took to remain tight inside the bud was more painful than the risk it took to blossom.-- Anais Nin
 
 
Blessings of Courage!
 
2012 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.

Initiation into the Realm of Bees: a Lesson on Chaos

Posted on June 6, 2012 at 12:00 PM Comments comments (6)
I'm convinced that chaos is the new norm, and that the challenge is all in how we deal with it.  A few weekends ago, after much deliberation and some setbacks due to an unforeseen incident, my son and I picked up our new bee colony from a local beekeeper.  Due to a severe accident that left this beekeeper temporarily in a wheelchair for many months, our bee colony was delayed and at one point, I resigned to the possibility that we might not be able to do beekeeping at all this year.
 
When this beekeeper's family stepped up and filled their customers' orders, we surprisingly were able to pick up our bees after a mini workshop on beekeeping at this apiary the same day.  It was to be the only introduction to hands on beekeeping that my 10 year old son and I would have before being immersed in a series of incidences and synchronicities that formed the basis for what I now know was an initiation into the realm of bees and their loving wisdom.
 
I feel it necessary to discuss a bit of background as to my history with the stinging insect realm.  Several years ago, while my son was still a toddler, I experienced anaphylaxis, which was an extreme reaction to the sting of a yellow jacket wasp.  I had been gardening and unbeknownst to me, suddenly found myself allergic to these creatures.  Nearly losing my life that day and also being stung several more times in subsequent years, I began to contemplate the message that kept repeating itself.  Why were the insects reacting this way to me?  The answer was my energy field of anger/irritability which I was putting out into the environment every time I gardened, something I wrote about in a previous blog  Gardening with Nature: the Wisdom of Insects.
 
I had to learn to conquer my fears in order to continue gardening and recently I faced my fears once again by picking up my bees.  Anything that could have gone wrong, did, and yet we were never stung by our colony because my son and I had learned a valuable lesson.  If you stay grounded, if you send the bees love, and you do not show fear, you will be just fine.  The bees showed us that.  Despite all the stress they went through, they never became aggressive toward us nor did we ever get stung.
 
All the beekeeping books will tell you that if a bee(s) is injured, they will give off a pheremone that signals to the other bees to be on guard and become defensive.  What happened that weekend, was enough to have given us a multitude of bee stings, but it never happened because we remained calm, focused our intentions and deep down I believe the bees sensed we were wanting to help them and have them become our allies.
 
Because our beekeeper had been experiencing a series of personal challenges after his accident, a sequence of steps occurred which led to our bee experience.  The enclosure not quite secure, I noticed a bee had managed to escape.  Surprisingly the person loading my car assured me not to worry and advised us to just wear our veils during our 1 hour return trip.  I thought he was crazy, but agreed to go ahead and I didn't care about the stares from passersby.  Nevertheless, we were still vulverable and the trip became increasingly stressful as more and more bees began escaping from a tiny hole and we watched them gather at the back of my SUV.  My son was a real trooper though and we kept assuring each other to remain calm.
 
When we reached home and after smoking our bees to calm them, I realized that it was not even clear to me how to install the bee colony in my hive since we had never received proper instructions amidst the simultaneous goings on of the workshop.  Luckily I managed to reach the beekeeper who informed me that the bottom sheet of wood to the box needed to be taken off, but unfortunately he ran out of screws and so there were also nails to be taken out.  Well, screws you can slowly unwind, but prying nails out while a colony of bees have been stressed and are anxious to fly out is another story.  Since I do not chose to harm any living beings, I was horrified to say that in the midst of all these activities and due to lack of complete instructions, I stood the hive box on end in the wrong way and inadvertently caused major casualties to the colony.  I was devastated but had to keep moving all the while knowing that if the bees sensed my fear, we would be in trouble.  My son stepped up, keeping calm and continuously smoking our bees as I took all the necessary actions to install the colony in their new home. 
 
What a sense of accomplishment my son and I felt as we managed to get everything set up without a sting and we saw the bees slowly begin filtering out of their new home and drinking at our bird bath.  Several hours later, a single, solitary bee came up to me and followed me around the garden.  When I finally managed to let her land on my hand, she began grooming herself as if to say "we know you did your best and didn't mean to hurt us."  It was a tremendously endearing moment for me which I will always remember.  Later that night, I remembered the words of one of my Native American teachers who told me that sometimes animals we encounter do what's called a "give away" which means that the creature will sacrifice itself in order to assist us from the realm of spirit.  Because the bees are communal in nature, it stands to reason that a multitude had to die to send this message to me.  I knew that in that moment, the bees had become our allies and would be our lifelong teachers.
 
The lessons didn't end that day, however.  The following afternoon while my son and I were hiking with two other people along Lake Erie, we happened upon a wild swarm of bees that were making a new home in an old oak tree in the woods.  Having experienced enough stress for one weekend, my son was reluctant to stay on the trail and walk through the swarm, but I assured him this was no coincidence and that we came upon the bees for a reason.  If we could manage to walk through the swarm without injury, we would have passed our initiation into the realm of bees.  After some coaxing from our trail guides who walked through unharmed, my son and I both faced our fears once again and felt a tremendous sense of exhilaration from walking through this time a colony of bees that were probably not used to human contact and yet, once again we remained unharmed.
 
I am still in awe from our experience with the bees and I know there will be other challenges to face, but I know we will get through them.  What matters is not what happens to us, but how we deal with and face the challenges we are presented with.  This is increasingly becoming the message that I am receiving via Nature as the Earth and economies continue to shift, and we are faced with chaos that needs to be dealt with.  There is so much that can be learned from the bees and all of Nature, if only we pay attention to the messages and confront our own innermost fears.
 
"Above all, send the bees love. Every little thing wants to be loved." excerpt from The Secret Life of Bees" by Sue Monk Kidd
 
Blessings from the Bees!
 
2012 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.