Grief and gratitude come with the territory of human; conscious awareness is part of a spiritual practice. Gratitude is essential to developing a relationship with spirit helpers and Soul. The importance of grief may seem less obvious. Sometimes grief opens us up to experience and shifts our awareness or potential. Here’s a metaphor: rending of garments may prepare us for wearing new clothes. Perhaps more frequently, grief is a condition visited upon us by circumstance that we should not ignore for the sake of our emotional health and our capacity for compassion. When grieving, I have found it most useful to grieve in the company of compassionate spirits or Soul. This can be done alone or in a spirit circle, depending on your experience and opportunities. With support, I can more freely express the depth of feeling, howling like a wolf if it arises spontaneously. Spirits are excellent as witness. And when working with spirits, there are also ritual procedures that structure the expression of grief, so you can work deeply supported, and then close that circle of experience and move on.
The following poems are taken from Sacred Conversations: Dialogues with Soul. The idea of this joint venture was to express topics with an economy of words. These two poems were spoken together, one following directly on the other. It was my intention that they form a circle. I speak in regular font, and Soul speaks in italics. I also indent two spaces for Soul-speak.
I begin: I grieve for the pain my friends endure,
for their forbearance and unresolved difficulties.
I grieve unfortunate circumstance. I grieve for unmet potential.
I grieve for clumsy and stolen moments
where experience trips over time. I grieve for the perils
of community and country, and the leaking of resources and opportunities.
I grieve for the tragedies of the human condition.
I grieve for the trajectory of ignorance and for future generations.
I grieve that the Creation is flawed. I grieve for my own shortcomings
by name, and for my inability to connect what is disconnected.
I grieve from a whirlwind in my guts and from a still point in my heart.
When you grieve you are more fully human.
Your emotional content is carried by an unseen wind.
You make an interaction of experience and spirit.
Can you say more?
–You open yourself to compassion.
You are nailing thesis to the door of the church.
Your spirit refuses to be complacent.
Is there an aspect of the transpersonal within a personal grief?
–When you’re within the circle of lamentations,
when you are not simply complaining –
but requesting universal dialogue –
you vibrate with the energetic content of your message.
We witness the drama and hold the experience.
We’re not just trans-dimensional bystanders, motivational speakers,
or cheerleaders of the flesh. We imbibe a resonant silence
with the genuine expression of heartfelt grief. We educate time together.
We hold the circle of your triumphs and your struggles.
We make conscious as a team. This is sacred work.
Expressing grief mindfully gives your experience wings.
Something ineffable becomes lighter for the depth of your honesty.
Lighter for the awareness of mind.
Lighter for the words that, on this day, no longer need speaking.
Prayer As Praise
I begin: I praise the apple of morning.
I praise the illumination of first light.
I praise what the Earth and Sky birth together.
I praise potions and juice from the vine.
I praise the belly’s potential to eat like a king.
I stand in awe of the Beauty sewn into Creation.
I give thanks for the opportunity of spirit made breath,
of the lift within Light. I give thanks for Visitation,
for the Guest who arrives by invitation.
I give thanks that the world is moved by Spirit.
I give thanks that I am able to use and to give back.
I am thankful for the senses and sensual consolations.
I am thankful for friends and loved ones, for sharing and commitment.
I am thankful that my words become silence
when overwhelmed by the appreciation for un-named blessings…
Thank you for making whole the complement to your grief.
Lamentations and praise make a circle of days.
I thought you might appreciate this gesture.
I hope you realize that I didn’t exclude you in my expression.
–We know that when words are exponential,
silence becomes pregnant.
We know that when joy is shared the invitation is inclusive.
We know there becomes a point when we are speaking together.
Make a joyful sound and attract the attention of joyful spirits.
Hallelujah sisters and brothers…
–Each as One to the other.
Note: The poems in Sacred Conversations: Dialogues with Soul (http://musingsofaspiritualtraveler.com/sacred-conversations/) are actual conversations with Soul. I am the one creating line and stanza breaks, and am also responsible for the illustrations.