Potter Earth

Image courtesy of  dan/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Mud on the Floor

Today’s quote:

“The early Native Americans did not believe in an afterlife, at least not in the Christian sense of souls living eternally in heaven or hell. However, they did believe strongly in immortality. When we die, they believed, our souls leave our bodies and enter a spirit world where they freely communicate with the spirits of other living things that have died throughout the history of the universe, plants and animals included. The only way souls could enter this spirit world was to become part of the earth, the ultimate place of origin. In Listen to the Drum, Robert Blackwolf Jones writes: “We are all born from Mother Earth and return to Mother Earth. The next time you get mud on your carpet, therefore, don’t panic. You’re just looking at yourself in the mirror before your time.”

Shimer, Porter (2004-09-01). Healing Secrets of the Native Americans: Herbs, Remedies, and Practices That Restore the Body, Refresh the Mind, and Rebuild the Spirit (pp. 28-29). Black Dog & Leventhal Publishers. Kindle Edition.

Yes, that is mud on the potter’s hands in the photo. Perhaps it is all the mess my dogs have  tracked in  today every time they come back in from being out in all this snow, but today’s quote about mud being a reflection of ourselves really caught my eye.

Native American spiritual beliefs have always resonated with my soul. The above quote, however,  would have triggered a bit of anxiety in me were I to have read it in the past when I was younger and clinging desperately to the fundamental Christian beliefs I heard preached from the pulpit every Sunday.

During my spiritual journey of the past thirty years, I have come to believe in a “spiritual reality” which co-exists simultaneously as a parallel reality with physical reality. When I free my mind from the confines of physical reality by meditating, participating in centering prayer, or participating in a Native American sweat lodge, my mind directly connects with spiritual reality. I have learned that reality is always there;  I just need to be still, turn my “busy mind” off, and open up to an awareness of it. I am learning in centering prayer that the spirit of God is within me as well as surrounding me, and when I am able to focus my mind on consenting to that loving presence, I willingly enter God’s spiritual reality.

I believe all religions have their own way of knowing and seeking God—and of experiencing spiritual reality.  Somehow I find comfort in the humor of Blackwolf Jones; it is amusing to realize when I look at mud I am looking at a mirror-like reflection of myself from a different point on the continuum of time. The study of contemplative prayer is teaching me that God has no concept of time. God is “I am”…now, not yesterday, and not tomorrow, but eternally. I doubt God would have any trouble at all recognizing me in any form, be it mud or flesh and blood,  because I know it is my spirit that shares God’s eternity with him and not the package that houses my spirit.

Enough. You probably think by now being snowed in by the “winter storm of 2013” has gotten to my mind and caused all coherent thought to flee. Maybe it has. Leaving the confines of reality as I’ve known it so I can more consciously connect with God’s spiritual reality doesn’t scare me anymore. I have an eternal place in God’s spiritual reality—-one that is independent of the boundaries of time, space, and shape.

Please comment and share your thoughts about your experience of spiritual reality. Stay safe and warm. May God bless and keep you.