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I hope the pictures of my garden of beauty invite you into a new way of viewing yourself, your past, what your pain is trying to teach you, and finally a new way of looking forward into a blooming future. When Howard Gardner wrote about the basic intelligences we all have the potential to possess: language, math, movement, music, spatial, interpersonal and intrapersonal, he had not made the discovery of the 8th intelligence; Nature. It seems so obvious when you remember your own childhood and the pleasure and creative play that most of us over the age of 30 remember so well. The objects we were attracted to and the games we created alone and with others gave us new feelings and greater understanding of ourselves, our world and our relationships with others.
As you begin the process of creating personal rituals to heal your wounds, imagine a new life. Making peace with loss, or other topics to be covered in this blog over time, you will be entering a world of feeling, peace and meaning, which is the healing nature of life on earth. The eternal symbol of the snake with its tail in its mouth represents, as do the tree of life and the wheel, that things are always growing, beginning and ending, and to be in harmony with that concept provides continuous challenge.
For over 25 years I have had the privilege of leading groups of people who seek to release their pain and give birth to a better life. This has been accomplished by creating objects and redesigning their understanding of life’s experiences with a method that involves more feeling than talking, more creating than restating, and developing personal rituals with the express purpose of sharing with others the new, better way of being. Whether dealing with money, work, health or relationship issues, for example, putting a new frame on life is the goal of ritual.
As we begin our journey together, please look at the objects you collect and are drawn to, as they will reflect a world of self-knowledge back to you. I was taught that the first ritual of life is the naming of a person. When I was a student of marriage and family theory, I was given the assignment to write about the people I was named for and look at their history to see how it might have reflected or influenced my life. I was named for both of my parent’s mothers, which not surprisingly reflected the desire to cast me in the role of their mother. Ironically, my husband was named for both of his grandfathers, so unknowingly we were a matched pair. I suggest that you find out how you were named and how those names were chosen, what the history of the person you were named for suggests, and the meaning of the name. Since our personal and collective unconscious is unlimited and not totally knowable, we can gain great insight into our nature and how we got that way by looking inward at the clues. The name is a huge clue to who someone else wanted us to be.