Shopping Cart
Your Cart is Empty
There was an error with PayPalClick here to try again
CelebrateThank you for your business!You should be receiving an order confirmation from Paypal shortly.Exit Shopping Cart

     Awen Environments

                                                inspirational living arts

My Blog


The Summer of Orb Weavers

Posted on September 9, 2012 at 11:12 AM Comments comments (111)
This summer I had the opportunity to experience the benefits of a re-vitalized ecosystem with many songbirds, pollinators, butterflies and other beneficial insects returning to my own backyard.  I had the awesome moment of witnessing the emergence of a beautiful swallowtail butterfly from its chrysalis just because I left a section of my yard unmowed. 
I saw the return of numerous  orb weaver spiders  which I've found to be the only predators of the destructive Japanese beetle.  Orb weavers are a sure sign of the revitalization of the landscape and their arrival is one I look forward to, not despise, because I know the land is healing and balance is being restored.  I also got to listen to the  Choir of the Crickets  once again, something I usually just hear while camping or at the lake.  They are no doubt, bringing a higher vibration to the land.
Though my yard may look unruly to the meticulously groomed, pesticide ridden yards of many neighboring properties in my suburban area, I know that restoring ecology to my own backyard is not only good for the environment, but also for my own health and that of my child, as well as our pets and the overall community.  A great book I read many years ago on this topic is Noah's Garden: Restoring the Ecology of Our Own Backyards.  Although this book was written in the 90's, Sara Stein was well ahead of her time in recognizing that the gardening and landscaping methods we had grown accustomed to and come to accept as 'normal' in our society are actually destroying our environment and cannot be sustained indefinitely.  That is, if we want to have a healthy future for our children and this planet to survive. 
While I love the philosophy and information within this book, I will say however, that I do take exception to the author's use of the Monsanto herbicide Round-up and the burning of fields to eliminate unwanted plants.  I don't agree with using any chemical in the garden including the 'seemingly harmless' glyphosates which have since been proven to be the contrary.  Nor do I feel it is necessary to burn a landscape in order to place what you want in a meadow.   I also don't believe it's necessary to only use native plants in your landscape.  There are many, many medicinal/healing advantages to having exotic and naturalized plants in your landscape, so eliminating one for the sake of the other is not in my opinion, the answer.  Finding a balance between both worlds is.  If a plant is growing wild in your yard, there's a reason that usually only Nature knows and plants follow people when they are needed.
Being different is not always easy, however.  One weekend I witnessed one of my neighbors discussing my property with a guest at his backyard party.  I was mowing the lawn and wanted to go right over to him and tell him what I knew and how I felt.  Not only had this more recent development of homes pushed all the water from the previously existing wetland onto my property, but also the subsequent common use of pesticides from these homeowners had contributed to making the soil into an unhealthy, unproductive hard pan which reaked of decay when I first moved there over 2 years ago. 
I wanted to say all of these things, but I didn't because I knew it would only insight anger and increase tensions between us.  Instead, I chose to continue with my mowing and I write about my experiences here on this blog, in hopes that eventually people will wake up and realize that what they are doing is so contrary to the well being of this planet and the very health of humanity and all life.  I know I've said this before, but I will continue saying it until I see the last of the yellow signs in my neighborhood and community because it continues to amaze me how many people are still unaware.  Last night as I took a run through this neighborhood, I could just smell all the pesticide residues from the yellow signed properties, definitely not a healthy place to take a walk or be running, let alone allow a child to play.
Of great concern is also the activities that recently took place in cities like Dallas, TX and New York City, as well as states like Massachusetts and Pennsylvania with aerial spraying of pesticides to combat the West Nile Virus.  I believe many were unaware of these municipal sprayings as they were done during early morning hours and others expressed little or no concern to this activity which not only harms useful pollinators, but also animals and humans. Which town or city will be next?  What is truly needed is for the restoration of healthy landscapes which support beneficial insect predators and other forms of wildlife which create balance.  An excess of any type of insect is a sure sign of imbalance and spraying chemical pesticides will not resolve the problem, only create more imbalance and disease.
This excessive need to control our natural environment I believe stems from very deep rooted emotional issues and imbalances in our society and our ancestral DNA that need to be overcome and healed.  Attempting to control something so powerful as Nature is a wasted effort and so not in alignment with the way life should be.  Please give even just a little bit of space to Nature by allowing her to do what she does best. Choose to live gracefully and in awe and respect of Nature, and then she will bring you bountiful blessings beyond what you can imagine. 
Blessings of Awareness!
2012 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.

Removing Obstacles and Restoring Flow: a Lesson on Perseverance

Posted on August 10, 2012 at 8:02 PM Comments comments (2)
Some times we know that something is bothering us and we refuse to acknowledge or do something about it.  I've lived in my present home for over two years now, never really paying attention to a clothesline pole that stood in my backyard.  That is, not until recently.  The pole was mounted with concrete and stuck adjacent to a mandala garden that I created to inspire and anchor healing energies when I moved in.  The rusted pole had probably been there since the 1950's, once useful, but now an eyesore. 
This summer I suddenly began focusing on how the pole took away from the beauty of the garden and also became a possible hazard as I took my nightly walks around the property with our two dogs.  The obstruction became more and more annoying as the days passed.   Nevertheless, I felt helpless to do much about it since it was anchored in the ground quite firmly, weighed alot and would probably require a huge amount of effort and possibly equipment which I didn't have, to remove it.
Eventually something inspired me to begin digging in the hope that the concrete might not run too deep and I could remove it myself.  I spent considerable time digging only to be able to get the pole to move ever so slightly.  I finally gave up, tired and frustrated and the pile of soil and sod lay strewn on the ground for weeks until one day a friend who helps me with my beehive came over.  He felt the pole and said "it's almost there."  I was so surprised at his words because I had felt the situation hopeless and had just recently resigned to replacing the soil and covering everything up again.  His comment was just the impetus I needed.
Having found renewed inspiration in just a few words from a friend and feeling the need to release some frustration from a personal situation that was creating a great deal of irritation and angst within me, I decided to continue my efforts.  I began digging furiously, moving more soil and actually hitting the pole with the back side of an axe.  It was a great way to release the negative emotions that had been accumulating in me for quite some time.  I'm sure I must have appeared obsessed by any neighbors who might have seen me that day, but I didn't care. 
Although I felt the pole start to wobble more, it still seemed lodged deeply in the ground. Suddenly it occured to me that it was more important than I realized that I remove this ugly, heavy energy from my garden space and so I gathered my dowsing rods to test the influence and direction of energy that it was creating on the land.  I was not surprised to find that the sphere of influence of its energy was quite large and the radiation of the energy was quite negative, anchoring downward flowing energies into the Earth and disallowing cosmic energies to create balance. 
Since the Earth has a grid of meridians and energetic points all over the planet, I knew intuitively this iron pole and its anchoring cement was creating a hugh blockage to the health and balance of the entire property.  The same can happen in our own body when a chakra becomes blocked, eventually leading to disease.  I also remembered that cement was composed of less than desireable materials which drain Earth energies and can actually contribute to cancer as the cement deteriorates into the soil and surrounding subterranean waters.  Many farmers know that if you put a battery on concrete, it will drain it and so you should always put a piece of wood between the two.  I knew that having this pole thrust into the land combined with the concrete was creating a disturbance and blocking the natural occuring energies that were beneficial on the land.
I then summoned all my guides from the realm of spirt to help me muster my greatest strength to dislodge this blockage and restore balance to my home and to my life.  What happened next surprised me and yet, similar things had happened in the past.  I made one more effort, digging again furiously and suddenly I felt the entire pole become unstable and dislodge.  It was as if I needed to recognize the significance of this blockage and call upon help to reinforce my strength, which suddenly became greater than what I thought to be possible.  The job was not quite finished though, as I struggled to figure out how to get a 2 ft. block of cement with attached pole out of the large hole I had created.  I began digging again and managed to move the piece further to the point I could used the weight of my body to create a fulcrum for balance and move the piece out of the hole. 
What happened during those moments totally took me by surprise.  I felt a sudden surge of energy rush through my body, accompanied by such a tremendous release of frustration and suppressed emotions that I let out a huge gasp as the piece was removed.  This blockage in the land had coincided with the blockages in my own body.  Ever since moving into the house, it seemed that despite my best efforts, I had often been exhausted and filled with negative emotions due to constant problems that seemed to occur.  I sensed that so much of this was gone and the source of my irritation had been released with a tremendous sense of exhilaration that I hadn't experienced in a long time.  I had accomplished something I originally thought unimportant and later overwhelming and impossible, and yet extremely significant for my own well being and that of the land.
Later that day as I walked the property surveying and admiring all the work I had accomplished creating gardens, re-establishing wildlife habitat and creating my own sacred space, I felt such a tremendous sense of gratitude for my perserverance and fortitude in continuing my work and research despite my own doubts and continuous challenges that were presented in my life.  Seeing the space where the rusted pole had once stood, provided such a sense of satisfaction that I wondered how I had tolerated it's being there these past two years and why I hadn't done something about it sooner.
Sometimes the little things mean alot.  In fact, most times they affect us more than we realize.  And sometimes all we need is some words of encouragement from a friend to help us accomplish something seemingly impossible that can change our life and our perspective of reality.
Blessings of Inspiration!
2012 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.

Earth Energies: What is Your Home Telling You?

Posted on July 3, 2012 at 12:21 PM Comments comments (6)
Does your home speak to you?  Are the channels of energy running freely on your property?  Do you pay attention?  Land has chakras (energy centers) just like people do.  I pay attention to every subtle little nuance that takes place in my home and on the land.  Sometimes the messages are blatant, like when something breaks down or becomes clogged, but other times they are more subtle, requiring insightfulness and awareness. 
When you work with the energy of your home as I do, you begin to see the unfolding of new life on the land such as new flowers or wildlife, improvements in your health and well being or relationships with neighbors change.  Sometimes there is also an ugly phase where things surface, relationships become explosive and accidents or illnesses occur.  It's all part of the process of releasing the past, old memories, energy patterns or toxins held within the land and in your home.  Knowing why you chose your particular home is half the battle and the first step toward improving your life and the well being of all that surrounds you.
I happen to live on a property that is incredibly sensitive energetically and physically because it is affected by underground streams of water and Hartmann lines, energetic grids of energy that emanate from the Earth.  Hartmann lines occur when natural existing energies emanating from the Earth combine with electrical interferences.  These energy fields have been scientifically proven and measured.  They are also typical in urban and suburban areas.  It is said that animals and people will sense an earthquake 16 hours prior to its occurence, if their home has Hartmann lines running through it. 
It took me a while to recognize this pattern, but then it dawned on me one day that the reoccurences I was seeing in the behavior of my animals, the flowers in my gardens, and in me were being determined by this energy that ran through the land.  I would see flowers like Tradescantia (spiderwort) and Queen Anne's Lace (wild carrot) collapse suddenly for no apparent reason, my cats would become incorrigible, and I would be edgy and irritable or anxious.  Because I'm so sensitive, I knew I was feeling the shifting of energetic grids in the Earth when an earthquake occurred and eventually I was able to verify it after doing some further geomancy research.  For more information on geopathic stress, Earth energies and specifically Hartmann lines visit Richard Creightmore's research on this topic.  I found his extensive work to be supportive of many of my own conclusions, as well as supported by a wide variety of resources.
There is also the issue of the vitality of your land.  The natural geomagnetic field that exists on this planet is 7.83 hz which is necessary for all life to exist as we know it here on Earth.  When this vibration falls too low where there is little life force or too high where there is a great deal of electrical interference whether man made or naturally occuring underneath the Earth's surface, there will be signs of disturbance.  Plants, animals and people are all affected by this imbalance of energies.   They will display it in various ways whether it is through illness, weakness and irritablity, or exhaustion and depression. 
A common sign of low vitality on your land is areas where nothing will grow or trees become diseased and deformed eventually dying, contorting away from underground streams or other forms of interference.  Plants, fruits and vegetable growth will also be stunted such as berries that never reach mature size because there's not enough cosmic life force drawing them upward.
It doesn't matter where you live, the same laws prevail all around this planet.  Plants, animals and human beings will thrive where the energies are balanced and supporting of their natural systems of equilibrium.  Where it is not, you will see signs of decay, difficulty, and even disease and death because the energetic patterns are such that they support the destructive activities initiated by parasites and other micro-organisms which create the continuous process of breaking down material in order to recycle into new life.  In truth, we could not live without these microorganisms because they provide a vital service to this planet.  Would you want to live in an area that is going through a process of decomposition?  Absolutely not.  It will pull down your energy and make you susceptible to a myriad of problems.  In order to remain healthy, we all need to be in areas that are supportive of life.
The Earth needs to maintain this delicate balance between Earth energies and cosmic energies (influences from the sun, moon and planets) in order to maintain equilibrium.  Unfortunately, where man has intervened, this is often not the case.  Visionaries such as Viktor Schauberger and Rudolf Steiner discussed this delicate balance in many of their writings.  Although both passed away some time ago, we are at a crucial stage of this planet's evolution that was foretold by both of these men because Nature will always know the right way and will act accordingly to restore balance to her ecosystems and this planet.  This is evident in the increasing amount of natural disasters and Earth quakes being experienced around the globe. 
Ants and yellow jacket wasps in and around your home, for instance, are a common source of irritation for many and are an indication of geopathic stress and low earth energy.  They are vital however, because they are releasing formic acid which is necessary to all life, as well as to restore and revitalize dead soil on a landscape. Yellow dock and bull thistle plants are typically an indication of toxins in the soil.  Yellow dock is a liver cleanser if taken internally and it binds itself to harmful toxins and metals in the soil such as arsenic.  Queen Anne's Lace cleanses and aerates hard, lifeless soil and pulls nutrients from the subsoil with its long taproots.  Killing or pulling them out or using weed killers or pesticides is actually doing yourself a disservice, because you're not allowing these plants and insects to do their job.  These life forms know what they're supposed to do and that's why they're there to restore balance.
So what can one individual do to restore balance to a planet that seems more and more chaotic? You can work on your own home and/or plot of land to bring energy and vitality to your life, thereby affecting your community and the world at large. By revitalizing your land and restoring balanced systems that enhance and allow for the natural order of things to exist, you will essentially restore health and well being to your own life. Working with native and naturalized plant life and decreasing or eliminating chemical usage are a great way to start. Whatever's growing wild on your property is usually a great indication of what's lacking in soil vitality and Earth energies.
If you need help and don't know where to begin to address the myriad of problems facing you and your property, I can help identify energetic imbalances that can be corrected to help your gardens and landscape to flourish and your health and well being to improve.  Having a second set of eyes to evaluate and redirect imbalances that may be existing in your home and on your land may be all that you need to set you in the right direction.  Change begins with you and your landscape.  Why not make an investment in yourself and your long term well being?  You'll be glad you did.
Earth Blessings!
Steiner, Rudolf, Bees, Steiner Books, 1998.
Copyright 2012 Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.

Patterns: Overcoming Ancestral Trauma

Posted on January 23, 2012 at 10:53 AM Comments comments (10)
Recently I began recognizing some patterns in my son that made me reflect on where they may have originated from.  Although my son is still very young and like most kids attracted to material things, I really began to ponder where this need to constantly shop, buy things and fill his room with stuff came from.  He also has an obsession with all things pertaining to war and combat.  These are not patterns that I admire nor wish him to continue.  A typical boy perhaps, but perhaps not
I grew up with parents who valued quality things and waited until they could afford them.  Once they had something, they took care of it and kept their belongings for a long time.  The throw away society that we live in today was not part of my upbringing.  While I greatly dislike clutter, I also have very little tolerance for waste and excessive consumerism.  As I think back to my family history, I believe there's more to my son's behavior and it may go back to his ancestors, something deeply ingrained within his genetic patterns.
Both my mother and father's parents lost everything during the war.  My grandparents on my mother's side suffered the loss of their twin sons during a bombing raid, not to mention their home and all belongings due to fire while living in Germany during WWII.  My grandparents on my father's side also lost everything; my grandmother her freedom and my grandfather his own life due to the policies of the Stalinist regime in the former Soviet Union. 
It's hard to forget that kind of loss and what it does to subsequent generations.  This world is filled with descendants of those who survived wars, famine, political atrocities and the Depression, something which I believe contributes to the excessive consumer and other negative patterns inherent in many cultures at this time.  More and more information is surfacing now about how previous memories of ancestors do in fact affect those descendants who have never experienced the trauma itself.  It may manifest itself in a variety of ways from health to emotional issues to the need to surround one's self with things.
Lately I've been focusing a great deal on familial patterns and discussed this subject in Planet Whispers: Wisdom from Soul Travelers from Around the World.  Not coincidentally, I recently finished reading some powerful information in Olga Kharitidi's book "The Master of Lucid Dreams"  which supported some of my conclusions.  In her latest book, this Russian psychiatrist discusses her shamanic experiences in the ancient city of Samarkand, the capital of Uzbekistan.  Dr. Kharitidi's shamanic teacher tells her that in order to properly heal her patients, she must begin to resolve her own pain.  He discusses the trauma that gets passed on to successive generations if it is not resolved and goes on to say "this force lives inside you and generates painful circumstances again and again."  These "spirits of trauma" are caused by "memory spaces" and created by personal experiences in childhood, as well as ancestral memories which interfere with our happiness and ability to live healthy, balanced lives. 
There was a time in my life when I had an insatiable need to buy things-- clothes, furnishings and other objects, and just fill my time with shopping whether it was at the mall or at garage sales.  It made me feel better for a while, but it never really filled the emptiness I was feeling within my life. 
It wasn't until my son was born and I was gardening intensively and had spent years working with clients to release patterns from their land, that this need went away and I began to feel more complete.  I eventually came to learn that the more patterns that I released from the homes that I lived in and worked with, the more patterns I released from my own body and DNA, essentially the memories of my soul.  I was subconsciously chosing the clients and homes that I had for a reason.
I'll never forget the time I went into a client's home to do an energetic space clearing and the entire home was filled with things up to the ceiling with very little space to walk.  It was an image similar to those episodes of the television series Hoarders.  I remember wondering what could have possibly happened to this woman to make her buy so many things and be afraid to throw anything out?  Obviously there was some major trauma this woman had experienced to reach this point, which no amount of energetic clearing could address. Years later when I revisited her home with my geomancy teacher, I came to learn that the energies inherent in the land were a large part of the problem. 
I also worked with a man whose basement was filled with loads of furnishings and objects he would never use.  When I asked why he needed to keep all these things, he admitted that he had once been extremely poor and these objects represented a kind of security blanket for him.  Both cases represent examples of memories held within the Earth which form the foundation for the properties which the homes were built upon.  The memories held within our body and more specifically within our DNA, go hand in hand with that of the land.  You cannot resolve only one situation because the two are intertwined and people will continue to seek out properties, usually subconsciously, that will manifest the patterns of trauma which are familiar to them, unless the patterns are resolved.  If the home has experienced patterns of marital problems and divorce or financial hardship, more than likely you will also experience the same while living there unless the patterns have been cleared.
Interestingly, I had read Dr. Kharitidi's  first book "Entering the Circle" almost 15 years ago in which she discussed her initiation into the realms of Siberian shamanic wisdom.  The book had a profound effect on me, although I didn't understand anything about shamanism at that time of my life nor the path I would eventually follow. The word shaman originates from the Tungusic tribe of Siberia and means "one who knows" or someone who is an intermediary between the human and spirit world.
Over the years I've worked with a variety of clients, as well as my own homes where I've witnessed reoccurring patterns both held in the landscape, as well as in peoples' lives.  I had to smile when I came across these words in Dr. Kharitidi's second book in reference to the city of Samarkand, but also having a much farther reaching message:
"This land wants to tell these stories for the people in other lands so they can obtain knowledge from them.  The psyches of ancient people need to come back to life to activate memory changes in the people living now....The traumas of people from the past continue to live in their modern-day descendants even though most of them don't have an awareness of it.  Telling their stories will help heal these ancient traumas and change something critically important in the lives of many modern people."  Excerpts from "The Master of Lucid Dreams" by Olga Kharitidi, M.D.
Memory imprints can have a powerful impact on our well-being.  If we aren't aware of and don't try to resolve these patterns, we will continue to repeat them in our lives drawing those people, those homes and those circumstances that will repeatedly remind us and reactivate those patterns of trauma within ourselves. One method of releasing these patterns is explained during Dr. Kharitidi's training, as she journeys into some of the memories of her own traumas and changes their outcome.  By doing so, she releases the guilt associated with these patterns.  The brain apparently does not know the difference between the past and more positive thoughts created in the now. In order to heal these past traumas, she works with the perception of these memories.
Being aware of and recognizing these patterns is the first step in resolving them.  There are a variety of activities such as shamanic journeying, acupuncture, visualizations and meditation which can help resolve these traumas and change our patterns.  Avoiding or ignoring these ancestral memories will only result in further frustration as the energies of the Earth continue to shift within the coming years.  The Earth is healing herself and by doing so she will also heal us, whether we're aware of it or not.  Look at your patterns, learn to understand them and find a method to release them because if you don't, they will follow you wherever you go.
"There are many things in life that will catch your eye, but only a few will catch your heart."  --Author Unknown.
Blessings of Awareness!
References:  Kharitidi MD, Olga, The Master of Lucid Dreams, Hampton Roads Publishing Company, Inc. 2001.
Cloud, John, Why Your DNA Isn't Your Destiny, Time Magazine, January 6, 2010.
2012 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.

Animals: Our Divine Companions and Co-Creators

Posted on October 22, 2011 at 10:42 AM Comments comments (2)
I seem to always be inspired to write when something tragic happens whether in my own life or something I've heard about.  This article is no exception.  As I write these words the tears well up again as I recall the tragedy that occurred this week.  I feel a tremendous sense of loss concerning the  massacre of exotic wild animals  that happened in Zanesville, Ohio, something that goes beyond anything personal that I can attribute it too. 
We may never know what possessed Terry Thompson to release the animals in his care or take his own life, but I would like to believe that, overwhelmed with his responsibilities both financial and physical, he could only give these animals one last chance at freedom.  I believe the burden of caring for so many exotic animals became too much and he could see no way out of his dilemma.  I'm certain that he made mistakes, but I can only hope that a greater good can come out of all of this and that some have chosen to die so that others may live. For now the hearts and spirits of these animals are free from the mental, physical and emotional constraints that man had put on them for so much of their lives.
I am reminded of these words from one of my favorite children's movie:
"When a willing victim who had committed no treachery was killed in a traitor's stead, the Table would crack and Death itself would start working backwards." 
-- Aslan from the movie The Chronicles of Narnia
The traitors are those who profit from animal misery in any industry.  I think that events like the story in Zanesville are perhaps the only thing that will wake up humanity to the suffering and plight of animals in captivity.  This story is tragic in so many ways because these animals were either bred in captivity or taken from their homes in the wild in order to be someone's playthings.  Terry had apparently found most of these exotic animals at auctions and was willing to give them a home.  It was a daunting task that should be required of no man.  People had tired of their responsibilities and so left them to another.  It's a familiar story whether its a wild lion or a domestic cat. In the end, the last caretaker of these magnificent animals freed them into an unfamiliar world and took his own life out of desperation. 
Though believed to be based on public safety, no doubt the decisions made during the 18th and 19th of October were based on fear, control and a lack of understanding of the value of creatures of this magnitude. Of course there was danger to the public at large, but couldn't the town have been issued warnings to stay inside until these animals had been properly tranquilized and transferred to other centers?
To senselessly kill a majestic lion or rare bengal tiger or a beautiful wolf is unfathomable to me.  The fact that those who shot these creatures appeared to sense no remorse and did not question authority is so alien to my own philosophy of life and the respect that I hold for these creatures.  This event is truly a sad statement of the lack of emotions and apathy found within our society with regard to animals in general. Or perhaps some of those who so willingly shot these magnificent beings were filled with excitement similar to those who mercilessly kill lions and other animals in canned hunting situations.  What thrill could there possibly be in taking down such a magnificent being?  I will never understand. 
While there's no question that there are many, many people who truly honor and value animal life, still so many animals are held in tortuous captivity around the world for entertainment at the whim of man, as well as kept in unhealthy and inhumane conditions to supply our countries with food, not to mention all the domestic animals that get abandoned on a daily basis around the world when they become a burden.  A perfect example are the streets of the Ukraine where a culling is now being done of homeless cats and dogs that are being hoarded into  traveling crematoriums  where the animals are burned alive in order to clean the streets and prepare for a 2012 soccer tournament.  I can only imagine that the general population does not agree with this government action and is appalled at what is taking place.
This weeks tragedy came right after I had completed an amazing book called  Mystery of the White Lions, Children of the Sun God  by Linda Tucker who lives in South Africa and has created the Global White Lions Protection Trust to protect and restore these majestic rare beings to their sacred homelands in Timbavati.  The book is filled with insights into the origins of man, geomancy relating to the sacredness of the land along the Nile River reaching from Timbavati to Egypt, and the lessons that the sacred white lions have come to teach us as messengers of a time and a knowledge long forgotten.  After reading this book and hearing of the tragedy in Ohio, I was even more profoundly affected by this senseless loss and the necessity for all of us to change our relationship with the Animal Kingdom before it is too late.
I truly believe that if we all knew what took place within animal shelters, factory farms, circuses, etc. and within other countries we would all make different choices in our lives with regard to the food that we eat, what we chose as entertainment and whether or not we'll carelessly drop off those kittens and puppies that were so cute when they were born, but we unfortunately could not find a home for.  I have written before of the plight of domestic cats left to their own demise who eventually create overpopulated feral colonies.  It is truly a sad sight to see with countless exhausted females constantly breeding and many late born kittens faced with a brutal winters in areas like Western New York.
For many of us, animals are our companions.  They comfort us during times of stress or sorrow and they also take on many of the emotional issues we are challenged with, often taking on the illnesses or diseases that their human companions have acquired.  Cats, for example, experience all the diseases that humans do.  I am told that one local holistic veterinarian in our area is overwhelmed with the sick animals that are brought to her and simply cannot keep up with the demand.  What are these animals telling us?  The Earth is sick, our animals are sick and so is much of mankind.  Animals have been put on this Earth to be our companions, to help us and guide us through so many things.  They are not put here to solely be our food, our toys or our beasts of burden. 
There have been many references to seemingly unusual relationships that humans have had with animals both recent and throughout history.  Is the archetypal feral child of the story Tarzan who was raised by apes so implausible?  There have been many true stories about abandoned children that have been raised by animals in the wild.  Perhaps it's time we give animals a different perspective and not see them as creatures over whom we have dominion and are inferior to us, but as beings with similar emotions, instincts and wisdom to that of humans.  I believe we have much to learn from all of them.  Kevin Richardson's groundbreaking work as  The Lion Whisperer  in South Africa is a perfect example of the possibilities that exist when man collaborates with animals.  His work with families of lions goes beyond what we as humans have thought to be possible.  His love for animals began with the tiniest of creatures when he was a child.
This relationship that we have with the animals starts at the ground up from the tiniest of creatures in our own backyard to the king of the beasts, the lion in the wild lands of Africa.  It also includes the food that we eat.  If everyone were to see the many forms of animal suffering, perhaps they would think twice about where they buy their food or using rat poison or spraying their lawn with chemicals. Secondary poisoning  is a significant cause of health problems and/or death of cats and dogs who have come into contact with poisoned mice, birds and other animals.  Not to mention the birds of prey and other predators it can kill.  I have witnessed one of my cats go through an agonizing death due to what I suspected was poisoning from a neighboring property and believe me it is heartbreaking to watch.  No animal should have to die that way.
Over the summer I had the opportunity to witness the suffering of a mouse that had found its way in my gardens.  It kept running in circles around my flowers and never strayed far from me so I knew it had somehow come into contact with some form of poison, probably pesticides from a neighboring property.  I decided to catch him so that he wouldn't be eaten by other wildlife, thereby creating secondary poisoning. 
I never thought I would witness what I did during the last 6 days of this creature's life.  Because I value the life of all creatures and do not kill anything, I gave this mouse a remedy for poisoning hoping it might turn the situation around.  Although initially I was hopeful, eventually the poison ran its full course and the little mouse went through convulsions arching its head and neck and falling over constantly.  It was truly a heartbreaking sight to see because I knew this little guy was trying to live.  In the end all I could do was give him a safe place to die and some kindness, which most people wouldn't have done.  As a wildlife rehabilitator for many years, I do not make judgments as to what animal life has more value.
Until we realize that all of our choices and actions have consequences, many times unseen and unknown, we will continue to have suffering on this planet by those very creatures who are here to help balance the energies of the planet, be our companions and bring beauty and wisdom into this world.
"Wrong will be right, when Aslan comes in sight,
At the sound of his roar, sorrows will be no more,
When he bares his teeth, winter meets its death,
And when he shakes his mane, we shall have spring again."
--excerpt from "The Lion, Witch and the Wardrobe" based on C.S. Lewis' book "The Chronicles of Narnia" 
Blessings of Awareness from the Animal Kingdom!
This article is dedicated to the 49 animals that lost their lives in Zanesville, Ohio, USA between October 18-19, 2011.  May their deaths not have been in vain and may their spirits roam free once again in their homelands.
Copyright 2011 Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.

Creating for Self: Honoring Nature and the Creator

Posted on August 28, 2011 at 11:23 AM Comments comments (1)
"We do not see Nature with our eyes, but with our understandings and our hearts." -- William Hazlitt
For so many years I had been creating my own sacred spaces sometimes gardening to the point of obsession, never completely realizing why I was being guided to do what I was.  That was, until I came upon the  The Ringing Cedars  a very controversial series of books written by the Russian author Vladimir Megre' who tells the profound stories of Anastasia, a young woman now in her 40's who lives as a recluse in the pristine Siberian Taiga. Free from outside influences, she accesses the information of her ancestors through her grand and great grandfathers, Nature and the universal mind. 
Although some of what she speaks of, I was familiar with or had experienced, much more is so profound and beyond much of what we have been taught as part of the civilized world.  Being of half Russian/Ukranian descent, the rich traditions and wisdoms of the Rus Vedic culture which Anastasia speaks of, struck a chord with me.  I felt the last 10 years of my life had been an intense re-connection with this ancient core of knowledge passed on to me by my ancestors via my DNA and the realm of spirit, as well as my work with the Earth, and sometimes merely through observation.
One of Anastasia's main focuses is the creation of a "family or kin domain" in which individuals create a "space of love" filled with fruit trees and Siberian cedars that they have planted, as well as vegetables and flowers that bestow healing and blessings upon the entire family.  She tells Vladimir that even the pollen from the flowers infuses healing energy as you breathe their fragrance.  As the land matures, this healing energy of the family domain brings blessings for the descendants as the land evolves and the richness and power of the intentions become manifest. The land becomes a source of healing for countless generations and ultimately for this entire planet, as this concept expands affecting neighboring properties.
During the end of July I revisited a former home where I had created extensive gardens and a special place of sacredness while we lived on the land.  There had been layers upon layers of flowers growing there surrounded by vast amounts of rocks to raise the vibration of the land. Those who had once visited, told me they could immediately sense the feeling of peace I had strived to create there.
I could never have prepared myself for what my son and I both saw after well over a year of having been gone.  It brought such feelings of devastation for me to see gardens that had once brought me peace and joy be so overgrown, pillaged and destroyed-- a mere remnant of what once was.  I felt the spirit of the land had been taken right out as many flowers had simply disappeared due to neglect and much had recently been destroyed by the current residents.  This was the second time this had happened to something I spent several years of my life painstakingly creating.  The previous time it had happened after leaving an unhealthy relationship.  It wasn't any easier to accept the second time around especially when it came as more of a surprise.
I was brought to this former home once again by the owner who had asked me if I wanted to salvage anything before things were changed because the current residents had other plans.  I was overwhelmed with the task and part of me didn't even want to return to this place that had been filled with negative events and memories, despite my constant attempts to establish harmony and bring healing to the land.  Nevertheless, I felt it was something I had to do for myself and also the countless numbers of flowers I had left there, in order for me to bring closure to my relationship with this property.  It obviously hadn't happened last year when we left.
As it seemed I was endlessly digging up plants and hauling away rocks, I realized that I had created these gardens to help me through a particularly stressful transition time in my son's life and my own, as well as to honor Nature and the Creator.  I also knew the land was in desperate need of balancing.  While I know now I could have done things differently, I had ultimately transformed the landscape for people who did not understand the value of my work or the inherent energies imbedded in this property, nor were they willing to put forth the effort necessary to maintain what I had created after we left. 
It is for this reason that the sacredness which I had intended, had also left when I left.  While the imprint of creation and my intentions will forever be imbued in that land, the underlying layers of energies from my predecessors had taken over, as well as those who came after me.  It had been a severely problematic property from the start, despite the last owner having been devoutly religious and living there until she was well over 100 years of age. 
In the end I realized that the house should never, in fact, have been built on that location because of the water veins running below it and the inherent energies that came with it.  In essence it was once a very sacred piece of land on an aquifer which had apparently at some point been misused during its history.  Water veins hold very powerful energies that are constantly in flux and affected by neighboring properties.  Only people of the highest of intentions could properly keep such a house balanced and free from problems. A better use would be as a source of prayer and meditation, but not as a private residence involved with everyday living.
Many times while living in that home, I had been told by teachers, colleagues and family to leave because the energies were too difficult, but still I persisted until one day I had reached the end of my tolerance when we lost another beloved pet and I knew it was time to go.  I guess I had to learn the lessons the hard way but the process was not an easy one.  Revisiting this place and seeing what had come to pass, was an even greater lesson.  A geomancy teacher had once told me that sometimes there is land that shouldn't be messed with because the negative imprints are too strong.  Now I better understand what he meant.
I have the ability to 'create a silk purse out of a sow's ear'.  Sometimes this is a great blessing and sometimes, well, I question why I have this gift at all.  You cannot create for someone who is not at the level of your awareness and expect them to uphold your vision.  And so I realized that in the midst of dismantling some of my life's work, I had in fact created to acknowledge my relationship with Nature and the Creator.  I had created to heal my emotions and honor the divine aspect of my self by fulfilling the needs of my soul-- not to gain awe or acknowledgement from any other human.  I also knew intuitively that I needed to bring the grounding energies of rocks and healing medicinal plants to this land.  It was, however, a huge lesson for me in the end.
During those weeks of dismantling the gardens, I was also reminded of when the Dalai Lama came with several monks to the Buffalo, NY region many years ago.  During that visit the monks ceremoniously dismantled a sand mandala  that they had painstakingly created.  The colored sands rich with symbolism were then dispersed in a Western NY creek as part of their healing ceremony so that the prayers and intentions would drift along the creek, into other waterways and ultimately all over the world. 
It is hard for a Westerner to understand this sacred act of creating something so beautiful only to ultimately destroy it, but now I do.  It is the intention of the creation that heals people and the Earth and it does not matter if what man has created ceases to exist in one particular form because the energy remains somewhere in the universe.  The creator(s) of this work of art simultaneously receives healing from such a very inward meditative process.  For this reason it is extremely important to be unattached to our creations for we never know the ultimate lesson/plan in store for us and this planet. In the case of the mandala, it is the tiny blessed grains of sand that reach out to eternity going well beyond what one individual painting could possibly touch had the work of art remained intact. 
We can never know what will become of our creations whether it is a house that we build, a garden that we plant or a piece of artwork that we envision.  We have no control over what others may do and the lessons they may need to learn or even what Nature has in store for this planet.  What we can control, however, is the intentions of our actions and the love and care that we put into our work for that will forever remain in the records of time and be acknowledged by the Creator.  In essence, we create to heal ourselves because it is through that process of testing our boundaries, exploration and experiencing the beauty and oneness with Nature and all forms of creativity that we become truly alive.  And unless it is Mother Nature, those who have destroyed what another has created will undoubtedly learn their own lessons in time.
As I see the neglected flowers and shrubs recovering, my new garden taking form and my butterfly bush once again in bloom, I realize that this was all meant to be-- the lessons of creation and the opportunity to create anew.  These plants will form part of our new sacred space that is slowly evolving.  Who knows how powerful it will be in 5 or 10 years or even generations from now, what healing gifts it will offer and what I will have learned in the process...
With Blessings of Creation!
2011 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.