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January 23, 2010

Love like a willow tree

The other night I joined a shamanic spiritual drumming group with my dear friend and drum leader, Jaime Meyer. The focus of the night's shamanic exercise was to aid the spirits of those who died in Haiti with passing to the other world.

At first, it seemed heavy and even presumptuous, but in actuality, it was neither.

Jaime instructed us to protect ourselves spiritually (as you do in all journeying), not avail ourselves to the spirits in any way but rather to pretend we are a grove of willow trees so as not to attract their attention (our goal was to guide them through this sort of tunnel to the other world). The most important thing was for us to project all the love - the high Love that births all life and creativity - into the ritual space anchored by a huge 4' diameter drum. This would literally attract the spirits here.

The woman (interviewed here in this video) who brought the willow branches from Coldwater Spring in Minneapolis for Jaime to use in the ceremony told a story of collecting the branches from the "crotchety old grandmother" (Jaime was relieved to hear that he wasn't the only one who felt the tree by the spring was bitchy).

Well into the ritual, trying to focus on Love and being a willow seemed so Original in nature, and hilarious. Here we are, people, humans, working hard to concentrate on being as loving as a tree (and if you've ever been touched by the spirits in the woods, you'd see that this isn't so far fetched an idea that trees offer great wisdom and healing). I felt as if we were healing the grandmother willow tree and ourselves (I couldn't muster up love for the ritual space without first loving myself wholely), generating our original qualities of Loving, while guiding the spirits.

During the ceremony, I felt rushes of spirits - at first hesitant, then pulsing through, and then being hesitant again. Towards the end as the drumming was quieting down, I felt the children, the most timid, and tried opening the space more for them to pass. It was scary to me that the children might not make it, at least not this time, through our effort. I'll have to ask Jaime what he sensed.

January 12, 2010

About me

My name is Megan Dushin. I grew up in Garrison, NY on a horse farm with 4 older siblings. Funny I mention Garrison as the first thing... the place in which we grew up is critically important to our self-identity, or at least it is to mine. My dad, in his last few days with us, would ramble on about his hometown, picking berries with his family on Sundays, and playing in the park across the street. He hadn't lived there in 65 years, but it was foremost on his mind.

Horses are next on my mind, and siblings third. All these things make up much of who I am, though I don't ride, don't live in Garrison (or NY for that matter), and barely see my siblings. But these things are a big part of me, though intangible at this point.

That's it for now, about me.

About this blog

This blog is essentially a writing board for me to put to words thoughts and impressions that leave footprints in my soul as I wander through life, enough to write about and share. It's an experiment, so no promises.

Weaving tapestries of experience

The road we live on typically takes a long time to evolve. Evolve, that is, into OUR road. Our road that is filled with our emotions, our memories, our experiences, our perspectives, our truths, our mysteries, our lives. When I walk up the street, these days, in this neighborhood I've owned a home in for 5 years now, I don't traverse across alleys or cross-roads to differing roads. I stick to my own. I somehow feel safer, more familiar on my own road, so I walk up, turn around, and walk back. It's a short walk, but it's my walk, on my road, and it's laying the tapestry of my own weaving. Although I'm not a fan of Roseville as a neighborhood, nor a fan of living so close to the highway, nor a fan of many of the non-conversant conservative neighbors, I'm still making this road my own. No escaping it. With a marriage, two kids, and the tons of metal my husband stores in our garage, we aren't moving very soon, so I'd better make the most of it and weave whatever life it is I'm living. Walking.