Sunday, May 19, 2013
THE IMPORTANCE OF THE DIVINE FEMININE IN OUR PRAYERS
OR WHO IS MOTHER NATURE?
Who is Mother Nature? You probably thought I was going to talk about Mother Earth, but surprise, I'm not. Mother Nature is that part of us that expresses the Divine Feminine and yes, we all have that "mothering" nature within us. Our "Mother Nature" stands for the feeling part of us, our hearts.
We have been talking about prayer over the last few weeks, how to make a successful prayer, and our part in the prayer process. Today on Global Peace and Meditation Day is a perfect time to continue with our discussion about prayer and our part in the prayer process.
Did you know that the word prayer does not show up in any ancient traditions? It is not in the Dead Sea Scrolls or on ancient temple walls. Prayer is a relatively recent word that has made its way into most religions today. It was first used to describe a certain kind of request of God in the 13th century CE in Middle English coming from the French word preyen. The word meaning prayer we do find in ancient writings is the word for commune or communion. In Hebrew, the word for prayer is Tefilah, which means in the very moment we pray we are looking inside ourselves, seeing our role in the universe and our relationship to God. It is a communion with all that is the Truth.
I've been reading a little book on loan from Natalie Frush, one of the regular members who comes to Coffee Talks. The book is "Sixty Seconds: One Moment Changes Everything," which are the stories of life changing moments of spiritual leaders collected by Phil Bolsta. I've been reading one or two of the stories every morning. These are all powerful moments of transformation.
The story from Gregg Braden about prayer sparked my message for today. I did not know that Gregg was a senior computer systems designer for Martin Marietta Aerospace, a computer geologist for Phillips Petroleum and the technical operations manager for Cisco Systems before he began devoting his life to inspiring humanity to build a better world. Phil Bolsta says that Gregg is "a pioneer in bridging the wisdom of our past with the science, healing, and peace of our future."
Gregg's moment of transformation came in the high desert of New Mexico in the early 90's. He had hiked with his friend David who lived in a nearby pueblo to a place of an ancient stone circle where David's ancestors had constructed a kind of medicine wheel. David had come to pray for rain during a terrible drought in the area. Gregg thought he was going to see a sacred ceremony with chanting and dancing and he was eager to do so, but David simply took off his shoes, entered the circle and honored his ancestors. Then he held his hands in a prayer position and turned his back to Gregg. After a minute he turned around and said, "I'm hungry. Let's go get a bite to eat."
Gregg was astonished and said, "I thought you came here to pray for rain." David answered, "No. If I prayed for rain, the rain could never happen." Gregg was very puzzled and asked, "Why?" The answer surprised him. "Because the moment you pray for something to occur, you've just acknowledged that it's not existing in that moment-and you may actually be denying the very thing you'd like to bring forward in your prayers."
Gregg asked, "Well, if you didn't pray for rain just now when you closed your eyes, what did you do?"
David answered, "When I closed my eyes, I felt the feeling of what it feels like after there's been so much rain that I can stand with my naked feet in the mud of my pueblo village. I smelled the smells of rainwater rolling off the earthen walls of our homes. And I felt what it feels like to walk through a field of corn that is chest high because of all the rain that has fallen. In that way, I plant a seed for the possibility of that rain, and then I give thanks of gratitude and appreciation."
"You mean you give gratitude for the rain that you've created?"
"No, we don't create the rain. I'm giving thanks of gratitude and appreciation for the opportunity to commune with the forces of creation."
What a great explanation of what we as humans are supposed to do in our prayers! We are to visualize and picture with all our senses the ultimate goal of our request and feel the experience of it. That feeling comes from the Divine Feminine the Divine Heart within us. Without the feeling from our heart, our prayers are powerless. It is the feeling that is the prayer. If we are not on good terms with our heart self, our Divine Feminine self, our heart self will not send the feelings - the prayer.
Gregg says that feeling is the merging of emotion and thought. I have been wrestling with the difference between emotion and feeling. The Oxford Dictionary says that emotion is intense mental feeling and feeling is to be conscious of a state of being; the emotional side of a person's nature. After further research I discovered that there is no well-accepted definition of emotion but the American Psychology Association agrees that emotion is objective and feeling is subjective. So emotion comes from the mind when it wants to identify a particular feeling, that is give it a name, i.e., love, joy, hate, anger. Feeling comes from the heart as it brings forth the sensations of the person's understanding of the emotion. Feelings cannot be described in words, but they are very powerful. So emotion is mental and feeling is heartfelt. The goal is to get mind and heart working together.
The Institute of HeartMath began 22 years ago with scientific research on emotions and feelings and how they affect the heart. What the researchers re-discovered, is that there is a specific intelligence in the heart. HeartMath calls this the Heart's Intuitive Intelligence and Wisdom. They have developed methods to help people overcome stress, emotional problems, and tap into a greater heart wisdom. This is especially good for teenagers who need more tools to help them cope with raging emotions and feelings.
I want to share one of the exercises with you. Our well-being resides in our heart. When we are out of balance we need something to help us get back into harmony. Here is what to do. It is similar to going back to your Center of Peace, which of course resides in the heart also. Take a few deep breaths. Now begin to breathe from the middle of your chest, your heart. Refocus your mind to the heart area and continue to breathe from this center. Keep your focus in this area. Now remember a time when you felt really good inside. Bring up that memory and feel the good feelings from that experience as you continue to breathe from your heart center. When you feel the shift within, thank your heart self for helping you and return to whatever you were doing. You can use this technique anywhere at any time to bring your heart wisdom back up to normal.
Gregg goes on with his story. In 1998 he led a 22-day pilgrimage to the highlands of central China and Tibet, visiting 12 monasteries and 2 nunneries. At each place he visited he asked every monk and nun a question, "We see you praying twelve hours a day; we smell the incense; we hear the chants, the mantras, the mudras, the bells, the gongs. We see the healings and the effects of your prayers on the outside. But what are you doing on the inside?"
The answer was similar to David's answer. "A prayer cannot be seen. What you've seen are the things we do to create the feelings in our bodies and the feelings of prayers." Gregg explains that in the quantum mechanics, scientists tell us that the feelings, the power of the heart, are affecting the quantum field. We become co-creators by affecting the quantum field with our heart energy of feelings. Gregg says, "The feeling is the prayer and we all have the ability to commune directly with the forces of nature around us."
We are the prayer and the praying one; mind and heart together. Our Mother or Heart Nature is the part of us that affects the universal field of life. It is time to come back to realizing how important our Divine Feminine is, how critical that we show our hearts the same respect and honor that we show our minds. It is the two together infused with the Holy Spirit that brings about change in our lives and in the life of the world. I invite you to begin to honor your heart in a new way, to love yourself for the magnificent being that you are and to bring both emotion and feelings together in your prayers in a loving and conscious way. Prayer works because of the Wisdom of our Hearts. Allow that Wisdom to come forth in your life, commune with the universal love of the Divine and create miracles.