Monthly Archives: March 2016

Easter 2016

Good Friday A Day For Sacrifice

I grew up with Good Friday. I cannot say that Good Friday for me was a day for celebration, because I was an impressionable child and I read a lot. My knowledge of the world came from books. I was brought up to believe that Good Friday was a day for sacrifice and the ultimate sacrifice was the man who carried his own cross to the hill of Calvary. The story filled me with dread because of the excessive violence and I saw the parallels to my own life. I could see why people saw the crucifixion story as a story of courage and perseverance. If one was suffering, it was good to see that a God suffered alongside us. That we are not alone. If the great and powerful God could go through such suffering for us then we can endure the little bit of pain we were experiencing.

While I understood the idea of Gods suffering for us. I did not buy into it. I asked, if god was so powerful, why was he so powerless in the face of the Romans? I got a scuff at the back of the head in response. They did not know, so they could not explain it to me.

We obediently followed the symbols, ceremoniously not lighting the fire until noon which was when Christ supposedly died. We were told it would burn his body and cause more pain. It was good for us kids as we got to drink soda, something we did not have very often. Cola Champagne, coco cola, and Ting, a grapefruit pop. We ate easter bun and  cheese from the yellow and red tin. We went to church. My imagination opened in frightful ways, imagining the man Jesus forced to drag the heavy cross after he had been tortured, along the dusty road struggling to stay upright, people yelling at him, the Romans beating and prodding him, the crown of thorns jammed onto this head hurting him as he struggled the dusty road up the hill to his eventual demise. It was like our grandmother sending us to cut the switch she would use to beat us. We had to carry the tool of our own punishment to the executioner.

I imagined Jesus laying down for the soldiers to hammer the large rusty nails into his hands and then his feet. I imagined the weight of his body pulling on the nails as the cross was being lifted, blood dripping baptizing the ones with the job of raising the cross. I imagined the extreme pain he would have experienced. While there on the cross Jesus forgave his torturers. I imagined, with extreme dread his mother and disciples standing helplessly trying to save their own lives, watched as his essence drained away in the blood dripping from his hands and feet. I imagined the people fearfully repenting their decision to send Jesus to the cross and them screaming for him to get off the cross. You have done all these miracles, you brought the dead from the grave, save yourself. Yes, I wondered why did Jesus not save himself, if he was so powerful. I had no answer. I imagined the earthquake when Jesus died and the sound of the curtains in the temple rending with a terrible sound that echoed around the area and the dead raising up to walk the street. I wonder if that is where zombies came from? My little mind was filled with questions and no answers. So I turned to observe the people around me. The ones who touted the story, justifying the glory of violence as the end to the means of making our lives better. I watched closely. I paid attention. But to no avail. I did not see the purpose to the violence that they sold.

I enjoyed the treats, though. I liked stories so I took in the storytelling. I eventually saw it as stories, because the people who were abusing us were not changed by the blood of christ nor did they seem to recognize the sacrifice that was made for them. Or at least I don’t think they seemed grateful enough to change their ways and become more giving and kind. I figured that Jesus failed in his mission, poor Sod.

Today, I see Good Friday as a symbol of our personal crucifixion. The pain we cause ourselves out of guilt and a sense of obligation to someone else’s expectation. People hooked on drugs and going through their own self-imposed crucifixion. People locked in mental and emotional disease have thrown themselves into their own moment on the cross.  Will they die? If they die, will the evidence that they existed be there, except for the knowledge of their existence to the people close to them?  Did Jesus die in vain? Are we continuing along the path to calvary, carrying our own cross to prove that we are worthy of life? It was already done. Jesus made the sacrifice. He needs us to live to find peace and forgive ourselves for what we feel we did wrong.

Good Friday to me is the end of the beginning. It is the completion of a cycle of pain and self-negation. Each day when we wake up in anger, in self-doubt, in self-hate, we deny the magic of our own inner child’s sacrifice for our own salvation. Find the way to create peace within your self and allow the healing to begin today, this Good Friday, a day of symbolic sacrifice.

 

Sonia Nadina Haynes, life coach and emotional healer. Her intention is to assist you to live your life well. www.soniahaynes.com

Shaman Story

Mystical Experiences Without Fanfare

Most of us rely on the visual or audial for validation of the existence of other worlds. Eastern European, Asian and First Nations mysticism gained traction in our society because of the pump and circumstances displayed for all to see. Smudging, ceremony, dance and drumming give us the authenticity we require to know that god exists. We have a visual expectation of how a shaman should appear and sound and accept the authenticity of the individual’s gifts based on their appearance. My great grandmother, Muma Gayle looked like an ordinary person. She had her head wrapped in a red and white, stiffly starched, plaid cotton headdress, like the senior women in the village. She dressed in layers of clothing in the heat of the day but all the other women did the same. She had a clay pipe which she smoked up until her one hundred and seventh year when she decided to take her leave from this state of existence. Many of the elder women in the village and the villages around smoked a clay or corncob pipe.

Her daughter, my grandmother (granny) Emma Haynes, nee Gayle did the same. Both were powerful medicine women in our community. Neither tried to convince others of their pedigree or their power. I remember Muma calling me from inside her house, even though I tried to hide from her, which left me wondering how she knew I was there. Emma Haynes was the same. One Sunday, my sister and I were home alone, we might have been sick, when we decide to pick tangerines from the tree that grew along the path that lead to and from our wattle adobe house. The tangerine tree was very tall and gave fruit as big as a grown person’s hand. We had taken all the fruit from the lower branches and the sweetest and biggest fruit were high up on the top branches, out of reach.

Granny was called to go see someone who was dealing with an impending difficult birth leaving us to cool our heels at home. We were bored. Conversation turned to the tangerine tree and how we would get the fruit from so high up. A pole did not work so my sister decided to climb partway up the tree to improve her reach. Before she left, granny had told us to stay away from the tree, as if she knew what was on our minds.

My sister climb the trunk of the tree and was half the way up, about ten feet off the ground when I saw a large green lizard on the branch below her. It was angrily shifting from red to green to black, flicking its tongue, snapping its jaw and slowly stalking her. She looked down saw the lizard and freaked out.

“I am going to get the ladder.” I yelled.

As I turned to run for the ladder, she let go of her hold of the tree trunk, falling onto the rocks at the base of the tree. She hit her head and passed out. Boy, I was worried. I brought her to and helped her into the kitchen where I mixed up my grandmother’s trauma brew and gave it to her. She recovered with time to spare before our grandmother returned home. We agreed not to keep our adventure to ourselves.

“I told you not to climb that tree!” She screamed at us as she walked into the yard.

We were in shock. How did she know? We tried to see if she might have observed us from where she was, but we could not prove if she was a witch or just clever. That was my childhood. Strange and sometimes crazy mystical experiences without fanfare or labels.

Blog image words hurt

Political Correctness makes Negative Behaviour

Have you ever tried to cut your own hair or trim a hedge in your garden? You have in your mind the exact shape and length you want the cut to be. You trim one side and then attack the opposite side to balance off the cut. When you look at your hair in the mirror, it seems unbalanced to you. Of course, we are our own critic. In an attempt to create the perfect cut, we see the slight imbalance in our haircut and attempt to fix it. We cut the other side trying to even out the cut and create a total mess. Soon we have cut our hair so short that we have to go to an expert to get it styled in a way that we did not want. The idea for this blog came through a conversation where several people shared their stories about ‘the hair cut’. One lady shared how her mom tried to cut her bangs and left a jagged mess before giving up trying to even out the mistake she had made.

We live in a world that exists in polar opposites. We have the North Pole and the South Pole. We have east and west and each is different, with its own climate, land mass and animals. This contrast makes our world an interesting and varied place. Only one part of the earth can be exposed to the light of the sun. The other, opposite side will always be in darkness, unless there are two suns shining at opposite sides of the world at the same time, and even then some part of the earth will be in partial darkness. This is the same for all of us. Even when we are in a room surrounded by light on all sides, the mass that we are, dark matter, will split the light and cause it to flow around us, thus defining and marking our existence.

For humans to understand the phenomenon called emotion, we need to experience the opposites – sadness, dependent on happiness to understand balance. In order for us to feel the righteousness of forgiveness, we need to experience a wrong and so on. The world and our own psyche are in a state of constant flux trying to create balance, like the pendulum that swings too far to the left and in its momentum back to balance, it swings too far to the right. This continues until the momentum is used up and the pendulum reaches a still point. In the world around us it seems that the political correctness that we embraced for the last couple of decades has swung back and the rudeness that we have kept under wraps is now uncovering itself. The political arena is a prime example. In the past, we fell into political correctness excising the words we innocently used to describe people and events in our environment. We avoided using statements and words to describe an event, a person or an activity that we’ve come to consider as hurtful. This quietened us for a while. But now the negativity is coming at us with a vengeance. We did not understood the emotional effects our words had on others and as we continue in ignorance, we are now feeling the pain that words can inflict.

For the person who spews toxic liquor in words, it is necessary to understood the  effects his behaviour and words have on the people around him. The antidote of issuing hurtful words and action is to realize that we are projecting our pain on to others because we are unable to hold it within. We cause hurt to the perceived weaker amongst us before they can inflict the pain to us. Only a hurt individual will willfully say things that cause hurt to others. Only a wounded individual will be hurt by the words spoken by another.

To become highly evolved beings, to achieve ascension, we need to be aware of our inner angst. In so doing, we will know what will make us react negatively and we can make corrections, creating balance.