Archive for the ‘fun’ Category

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The Wheel

July 16, 2009

Wheel

I pulled a tarot card first thing this morning.  It was the Wheel of Fortune.  All in all this is a very good card.  It means that sometimes it doesn’t matter how hard or how little we’ve worked, some things just happen with no apparent reason, and they are to our benefit.  So today, I’m lucky, or so the cards would have me believe. 

I’m not a pessimist, but I’ve been thinking about this Wheel of Fortune.  It represents luck, but nothing about the card excludes bad luck or even mediocre luck.   A tarot website that I consulted, even suggested that this card is about karma, as in  “what goes around, comes around.”  Can that even be considered luck?

So now that I’ve been pondering on this card for nearly 6 hours, I’ve figured a few things out.  First, we’re lucky  for the majority of our waking hours.  We’re even lucky when we’re sleeping.   Many people die in their sleep every night; I didn’t last night, so I guess that makes me lucky. 

The candle I left burning while I went out this morning didn’t burn the house down.  I didn’t get hit by a truck while I was riding my bike to do some shopping.  I have sufficient physical fitness to ride a bicycle several miles.  No one stole the bike while I was in the store in spite of not using the lock to secure the bike.  

The convenience store was giving away free fruit smoothies.  I was able to ride my bike while carrying the smoothie.  There was no bad news in my mailbox.  I mislaid my cellphone, but found it quickly.  It looks like rain, but the sun is still shining.  A bee stung me 2 days ago, but I have anti-itch medicine to counteract the venom. 

My marriage is secure.  I have wonderful children.  My parents just celebrated 50 years of marriage.  Friends surround me.  I’m gainfully employed.  I have the summer off from work.  The tomatoes are starting to ripen.

So what is it that makes today luckier than other days?  Should I be on the lookout for that one big lucky event?  Should I buy a lottery ticket?

Or should I be content with the knowledge that on any given day, all of us are lucky to still be here?

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Storyteller

May 26, 2009

You know these guys.  You somehow get dragged into a tent at a festival, or the school sends home a notice asking you to bring your child to school for an evening of storytelling.  You prepare yourself for an hour of some old guy in bib overalls, telling endless stories that end abruptly and make no sense.  Perhaps it’s a woman in a long calico dress who lived on a commune in the 1960’s, and she breaks out an autoharp to sing a song about spinning wool, but either way, you feel like you’re in for a real snoozefest. 

In this case, I needed to pick up some credits for Pennsylvania’s Act 48 continuing education requirement for teachers, and this storyteller was hosted by a local elementary school.  All I had to do was show up, listen to a few stories, and collect my 1 hour credit. 

Unfortunately, I was drawn in.  This guy was good, perhaps too good.  I had to give him credit, he was in corduroy pants and suspenders instead of bib overalls.  His first story was not only enough to hold my attention, I found myself imagining what this 8 foot tall hairy woman would look like.  I wondered how this “regular man” could leave the child he had with the hairy woman, and I certainly couldn’t imagine how he could leave his son, no matter how ugly the kid was.  

So when the storyteller asked us to close our eyes and go on a journey, I did so quite willingly.  Why not?  I’ve been practicing some meditation lately, and I figured this story could be like a guided meditation.  We were directed to walk into the woods.  As we made our way through the forest, we were told to follow the path to the big tree up ahead, our family tree.  Our next instruction was to take a close look at it, feel the bark, look down at the roots, gaze up through the branches into the sunlight. 

Our storyteller asked us to do what seemed to be impossible, but it was afterall, just in our minds.  We entered the tree.  We were doing this collectively, a group, in the school cafeteria, but at this point, the story, and the experience became very personal.  I’d even describe it as sensual and intimate without being sexual.  A tree is an awesome living thing, and to be in the tree, our own family tree, is a deeply personal experience.  

“Go down to the roots, and if you see an animal there, greet them; listen to what they have to say.”   I saw a skunk, which made me laugh a little, but I heard him say what a great honor it is to live in this tree, and that I was a special part of the life of the tree.  I travelled to the highest branches and met a robin there.  The robin told me that the branches of this tree have given me the ability to soar.  I thanked both the skunk and the robin and returned to the trunk. 

Our guide asked us to leave the tree and start back on the pathway to our real world.  We rubbed our hands together, perhaps to awaken our minds to our present reality.  Then we wiped our faces to open our eyes and leave behind that great family tree we discovered in our imaginations. 

Storyteller, where did you take me this evening?  I’ve been playing with myth and magick, story and dreams.  Meditation has taken me to places much like you showed me tonight.  Once again, I am reminded that we are all connected. Family connections, whether we like it or not, can be very strong. They can be help us or hurt us.  Ultimately, the family tree determines not only who we are, but provides those heaven-lifted branches from which we take flight to become the person we are meant to be.