When we left for our trip to Hawaii in November, we decided to look at it as a healing pilgrimage. Both of us felt stressed and in need of a vacation. Why? We’re retired, with a good home, family, friends, interests. But then there’s the state of the country, the world and the earth, and our issues around growing older. I guess that’s enough. We are in the heart of the dark of the year, and the whole year has been pretty dark.
In any case, we didn’t even realize how much tension we were holding in our bodies until we got there. It took a while to let go and really feel like we were there. Staying at an old favorite place where the ocean pounds against the sea wall constantly, enveloped in those rhythms and sounds, we began to relax. For the first two weeks, Barry did not have his chronic backache, and I did not have either stomach or lung issues.
Wave after wave,
large and relentless,
roaring as they slap
the sea wall.
They thrum in my body –
the sound –
the rising and falling –
Like a huge animal,
awake and in motion,
the power of the ocean
cannot be denied.
even in its immensity,
it brings rest and peace,
impersonal yet affecting,
mine to revere,
The blessing of Kona.
I did a two-card SoulCollage® reading and saw that anger is my theme, and that my place is on the edge, in the borderlands. The message: You do not “win” by denying the mud realm; neither does it serve you to ignore the Otherworld.
Anger. My issue from childhood. My mother called me “Mad dog” when my lower lip protruded in my distress. Socialization by humiliation. (Oh, Mom, I know you meant well, but this was true for me.) That little girl, full of fire and outrage, never learned how to relate to it besides being ashamed.
Pema Chodron advises to stay with our habitual patterns, that they are our way out. Okay… The Big Island is definitely the place to work on/with fire! The whole island is a fire shrine and an edge place.
Several days later into the trip, I did a four-card reading around working with/on the anger, and here is a little story the cards told: Looking for healing, a woman fittingly goes to the goddess Hygeia. She discovers that she must temper her fire with earth energy; the earth also knows and houses fire. She also hears that she can be appropriate with her anger if she remembers not only to use earth energy, but also to balance fire with water and with the depths of her knowing soul.
She may reconfigure that fire of anger by: 1) acknowledging it; 2) asking what is behind or within it; 3) determining its best use or expression. Finally, she needs to access joy, despite it all, because of it all.
The steps of the healing pilgrimage gleaned thus far: to relax and settle into a more open state; to acknowledge what needs healing; to look deeper, through writing and through dreaming.