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     Awen Environments

                                                inspirational living arts

My Blog


Reawakening the Spirit: the Art of Authentic Living

Posted on February 17, 2017 at 1:55 PM Comments comments (8593)
For a long time time I have been contemplating how I would integrate my lifelong skills with my many passions in life. I am now happy to announce the creation of my new site which is a culmination of my lifelong pursuits and the direction I wish for my work to take. 

While I love design and being creative, I love being out in nature as well and helping this planet to evolve into a higher state of being. My new site is a collection of offerings of products and services that I feel accurately reflect the body of knowledge and experience that I hold, as well as the direction I wish to take with my life and my business.

Reawakening the Spirit is about the shift in paradigm that is currently taking place on this planet. In order for new systems to be put into place, the old ones need to be dismantled. You cannot build the new on top of the old by continuing old patterns that do not work. You have to eliminate that which does not serve you before you can create anew. When you live more authentically, you feel the flow of the universe and harmony abounds. Everything becomes easier and the obstacles disappear. You become healthier, more vibrant and the energy you put out into the universe is magnetic to new opportunities. In order for this planet to evolve, we all need to step up and live more authentically by following our heart and intuition. We all need to remember who we are and why we came here.

It is my intention to assist you in fulfilling your authentic path via my offerings, my continued blogging and my photography. I will be teaching new workshops in the areas of dream interpretation, shamanic journeying and embracing your authentic self, as well as offering a variety of products such as space clearing tools to harmonize your space, vibrational essences and herbal teas and tinctures to help support your own personal transition.

When we stay in a place of gratitude and focus on beauty and balance, we envision a new future. Often this means reducing stress, taking more time for ourselves and living more slowly and authentically. When we live intentionally rather than being a victim, we create a new future for ourselves. 

My new site will give you a more intimate view of my work and how I am contributing to this planetary transformation that is currently taking place. Please come join me in Reawakening your Spirit.

Bountiful Blessings!

2017 Copyright Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison


What My Gardens Have Taught Me

Posted on June 23, 2016 at 2:15 PM Comments comments (44)
My gardens have evolved so much over time and taught me a great deal about life and myself. Gone is the need to control everything in a precise, neat manner. I have found that when I set my intention by planting my desires and allow Nature to unfold her deep wisdom and artistry, sometimes the most amazing landscapes can appear. At times you need to be patient when nothing seems to be happening or when things are not quite as organized or beautiful as you would like, but the results will always surpass your limited view of things.

Nature is always giving us direction and guiding us through subtle and sometimes blatant messages. It's up to us to interpret these messages and act accordingly. Very often I have used gardening methods that did not seem to make rational sense, but intuitively felt like the right thing to do. Navigating our life path can be the same way. It's up to us to follow our instincts and put together the pieces of the puzzle. Over time as a garden grows and develops through loving attention and care, our vision manifests into reality.

If I had chosen to control every aspect of my gardens and use traditional gardening methods such as eliminating all weeds, which essentially is anything I did not intend, I would have missed out on the true beauty and healing power that Nature is capable of. I would have missed all the unexpected flowers that suddenly appeared or the unexpected caterpillar, bird or butterfly that suddenly graced my gardens because of these so-called "weeds". I would have missed out on the moments of shear Divine inspiration that I received when viewing my gardens in a certain morning light or after a gentle, nurturing rain. I would have missed out on the unexpected flowers which would heal me simply through their fragrance or presence in the soil that I had never imagined.

Gardening with Nature is a process that evolves over time. It is a test of faith that leads us in the right direction if we allow it to. It is an intuitive process that guides us step by step, year by year to discover our boundaries by eliminating that which we don't want, trusting that Nature knows more than we do and following the guidance that you receive through what you see, feel and experience. Sometimes you have to just follow your heart, despite what others may think.

It requires spending time just being in your gardens without doing, sensing the energy of space and how it makes you feel. It requires opening up all your senses. It is a collaborative process that teaches you where you feel uncomfortable, what your body is telling you and what all the beings of Nature are telling you including the ones you may not feel comfortable with or understand. Insects are very finely tuned to our energetic vibrations and will let you know when they are disturbed by you and also when they are in harmony with you.

Sometimes you have to allow a process to unfold despite the discomfort you may feel. Sometimes you just have to allow a little bit of ugliness to unfold in the form of aphids congregating on your flowers, a wasp carrying off a caterpillar, a spider entangling her victim in her web or a flower to go through her dying process without needing to cut her off once her beauty is gone. A garden is never perfect. She has her moments of glorious beauty and vibrancy and she has her days when she may be wilting and seem weak or very little appears to be in bloom. But overall, if you trust in the process and allow this process to unfold, you know that over time everything will come together and each year your garden will be that much stronger, that much more vibrant and that much more grounded and healthy.

If you allow Nature to take her course and you allow your inherent creativity to unfold, you will receive unexpected visitors that you never imagined. There's something really powerful about allowing. There's a point where the Earth dances with the light of the Sun and the Moon and everything comes together and sparkles vibrantly telling you that everything is exactly as it should be and all is well. It's a knowing that comes from deep within your heart and soul that tells you everything is going to be alright despite whatever turmoil or dissonance may surround you. Its a deep faith in the process of life that carries you through the discomforting moments of doubt, feelings of fear or uncertainty that occasionally (or maybe too often) rear themselves once more in your life just when you'd thought they had gone.

I am truly confident that if more people took up gardening and grew their own flowers or vegetables and aligned themselves with the healing powers available to us within all living things, this world would be a different place. Take time to see the beauty that is all around us in so many sweet, tender moments.

Solstice Blessings!

2016 Copyright 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.

The Crystal Heart: a Mirror to the Soul

Posted on March 9, 2012 at 11:13 AM Comments comments (6)
The other day I was holding a large crystal heart in my hand and suddenly, quite unexpectedly it dropped onto my granite table.  Although a short moment, I cringed at the thought of the damage that might have occurred.  Surprisingly and to my relief, nothing happened. 
Later I reflected on the symbolism of this moment.  I thought about how crystals when they fracture actually allow more light to come through and rainbows of color will often emanate from within them. The same holds true of our own hearts. 
Sometimes we endure a pain that can be so profound as to open us up to more compassion in our life.  More light emanates from our soul as we have learned to have more faith and hope while understanding the pain others might be going through, because we have experienced something similar ourselves at some point in our life. 
These turbulent times are filled with challenges, experiences that we would never have imagined and sometimes painful moments that will eventually open our hearts to a greater reality, if we allow them to.  It is said that God only gives you what you can handle and what doesn't kill you, makes you stronger.  There's no doubt great truth in these words as every painful or challenging moment becomes an opportunity for healing and growth, a chance for more light to emanate within each individual in this world of seeming darkness and chaos.
We are living in times that connect us to our true heart center whether it is through joy, hardship, health challenges or loss of a loved one.  Each of these experiences are designed to open our hearts to what is important in our lives and what is our truth, so that we become clearer about what we truly need. 
When we have compassion for others because we ourselves have been challenged, we can move forth and offer hope and understanding to others.  This is the path of the wounded healer.   Shutting off our emotions or being robotic in our methods and attitudes toward the world around us serves no one, not even ourselves.  Doing something with heartfelt intentions does.  Next time you think about just going through the motions, think again and feel....
With Heartfelt Blessings!
Copyright 2012 Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.

The Gift of Sight: The Arrival of Samson

Posted on December 14, 2011 at 10:08 AM Comments comments (1)
"The eyes are not responsible when the mind does the seeing."  --Publilius Syrus
This story started out as an article about homeopathy and herbs until it evolved into something quite different as I began to realize that the message given to me was an even greater one.  It's the story about how even the greatest of challenges can give us new lessons, insights, and opportunities when we chose to see  them in such a way.  Everything is a matter of perspective. 
As life would have it, my cat stories continue with the arrival of a new feral kitten I named Samson, the source of inspiration for this article.  Samson was given his name for the strength of the sun and for his perseverance with everything that he has had to overcome and all he has had to endure.   Samson came around one day for food with severe lacerations to his eye, face and ears due to an attack from another animal.  He was lucky to be alive and even luckier that my brother was able to trap him.  The first time I saw his face up close, I was shocked.  I'd never seen injuries so severe on a live animal.  I really didn't expect to be able to save his eye and at times I questioned whether he would survive. 
Ironically, had this unfortunate incident not happened to him, more than likely Samson would have remained homeless throughout the winter and possibly died a painful death.  Now he has a warm place to sleep, food to eat and someone to care for him.  It was a huge price to pay but unfortunately, despite a month of intense treatment and improved nutrition, the wounds to his eye were too severe and his eye will have to be surgically removed tomorrow.  I had so hoped to save his eye, but it was not meant to be and surgery had not seemed to be an option at the outset. 
However, sometimes you have to accept the inevitable. While initially the costs associated with such a complex surgery were out of reach, a compassionate, local veterinarian offered his services at a minimal fee, something which was totally unexpected and I am tremendously grateful for.
Nevertheless, Samson taught me a tremendous amount about the process of healing eye injuries and the rich symbolism associated with the eye.  It is the eye that detects and collects light from its surrounding environment and regulates the intensity of what it encounters.  The eye is an amazing organ which can sometimes becomes clouded by the mind and dark moments of fear which affect our judgment and outlook on life. 
As we approach the Winter Solstice on the 21st of December in the Northern Hemisphere, the day of the longest night, it will be my one year anniversary since I began Awen Environments and my subsequent blog.  So much has occurred not only within my own life, but also in the lives of those close to me and around the world.  I simply cannot look at life in the same manner and I'm grateful for the experiences that have come to pass.  There are so many lessons in adversity and viewing the sometimes seemingly dark moments of life. 
The new book  Planet Whispers: Wisdom from Soul Travelers from around the World   was released on December 3rd.  It is a collaboration with writers who have each expressed intimate aspects of their lives and spiritual experiences that have occurred as a result of their relationship with their homes, sacred places, and numerous locations in Nature around the globe.   Each writer has demonstrated their ability to draw from their connection to spirit and the healing powers of the Earth to move beyond personal challenges and even tragedies including the death of a partner, as well as the contemplation of suicide, to the planning and arrival of a newborn child. 
Their stories are ones of triumph and grace amidst difficult decisions and sometimes overwhelming obstacles.  Often these writers were traveling to new places to gain a different perspective while learning from the circumstances and experiences of others, as well as cultures different from their own. My own contribution is entitled Lady Muskoka: a Story of Healing and Renewal.   In this chapter I describe some of my mystical experiences at Lake Muskoka in Ontario, Canada where I spent my childhood vacations and I learned to release the ancestral patterns of my family, a place where I found personal challenges and tragedies can be transformed into experiences of learning and rebirth.
This blog and my participation in this book began because of a need to write about my experiences, circulate information, as well as discuss my view point about things that I felt to be unjust.   It also began because of the fact I had the time and I decided to make use of a challenging personal situation in a creative way.  There were occasions I questioned what I wrote, but I perservered beyond the self doubts and fears of my own making.  The Universe has interesting ways of pointing you in the right direction.  If you trust your inner guidance, the path will be revealed to you and seeming obstacles can be transformed.  While writing has always been something I enjoy, it eventually became a tool of transformation for me.
I have had over 11,000 visitors to my website in less than year with readers from around the world.  To my surprise, my largest supporting group is from the Ukraine and Russia, the lands of my ancestors;  the place where my father was born and my grandparents died due to political atrocities.  I do not believe this to be an accident as I know in my heart, the people of these lands are connecting to my writing in a heartfelt way, resonating with words that go beyond intellectual or rational explanation. I have also had a large following within my hometown of Lancaster, NY where I have come to terms with and learned to utilize, much of my past experiences.  Thank you to all  the many people both locally and from around the globe who have been visiting my site and reading my blog.  I hope that you will continue to read my stories and spread my messages of awakening around this planet.
Everywhere I see stories and challenges that people have had to go through, and yet inevitably good appears to come from these seemingly insurmountable obstacles and I believe ultimately to those situations that seem extreme or hopeless. 
The Occupy Movement has spread throughout this country and to other lands inspiring people everywhere to speak up for what they believe to be injustices within the status quo.  While many have endured violence, ridicule, and difficult circumstances, people have been inspired globally to stand up for what they believe in. 
My own family knows all too well the price of war and speaking up against intolerable circumstances,  and so I honor and support those who have the courage to stand up for the rights of others and for the wellbeing of this planet. Voices have  been given to those who are afraid to speak and people are listening. I have faith that good will eventually come out of all of the chaos and uncertainty of these times. 
"Tears are Nature's lotion for the eyes.  The eyes see better for being washed by them."  --Christian Nevel Bovee
There are people all around the globe who are currently fighting for a new paradigm, a new way of being that is in harmony with all of Nature and this planet.  Their tools are their words, their actions, and their indomitable will and spirit to bring change to this world.  And watch for the angels, for they are all among us in various guises.
This Winter Solstice, be reminded that miracles can come from adverse situations and give thanks for the many blessings you have in your life.  The blessings are there, you just need to look for them and discover the gift of sight
Winter Solstice Blessings!
For a beautiful perspective on the  Winter Solstice,  please view Minnie Kansman's article on this very yin (feminine) time of year.
Copyright 2011 Awen Environments/Clarissa Harison.