31 Aug 2012

Dream Gardens

Dreaming that you are in a garden is often a healing and spiritual experience, because gardens are peaceful places, close to nature. Your dream may give you some clues as to how you are really feeling. So have a good look at your dream garden and see what sort of place it is.
  • Is your garden well kept? Or does it need some attention? Maybe you need to do some psychic weeding, letting go of things that no longer energise you.
  • Are there flowers? If so pay attention to the colours. If they are all one colour then you might need to balance your energy - look up chakra colours on the internet and see which ones might need attention.
  • What season is it? Spring is to do with new beginnings; summer is when things are at their height of energy; autumn is about harvesting and taking stock; winter is time for rest and renewal.
  • Do you feel at home in your garden, or are you uneasy - if so, then why? Maybe there is a monster lurking that you need to evict, or maybe you need to plant some news things.
  • Are you growing vegetables in your garden - spiritual food?
You might like to revisit your dream garden in a meditation, and make any changes that you want. Maybe you could plant a herb garden, or make a rose arbour where you can go to rest peacefully. Let your own imagination guide you.

22 Aug 2012

Willow Herb

There is lots of willowherb around at the moment, and it comes in various different kinds. This one is great willowherb, a plant of damp and boggy places. Great willowherb was often called codlins and cream by country people, maybe because of the rosy petals that reminded them of ripe apples (codlins). The elephant hawk moth caterpillar likes to feed on the foliage, so it would be worth cultivating some in a damp patch in your garden.

The similar rosebay willowherb is a plant that will be familiar to city dwellers - it loves to grow anywhere associated with fires, such as old bomb sites. This has earned it another name - fireweed.

The sepals (the small petally looking bits at the back of the flower) are dark purple, unlike the ones on great willowherb which are more greenish. Rosebay willowherb also spreads rapidly along railway tracks because its feathery seeds are wafted along by passing trains. Willowherb is also related to evening primrose, fuchsia and enchanter's nightshade.

Apparently the fluffy seeds of rosebay willowherb and other fluffy little parachute seeds are known as sugar stealers in some parts of Britain, which sounds very strange and slightly sinister. Maybe like the thistledown fairies of my childhood they have a mysterious, hidden aspect that we know little about! We certainly half believed as children that the `fairies' we chased and trapped in our cupped hands were sentient beings.

14 Aug 2012

Lizard Guide

There is something very strange about lizards, something deeply ancient and mysterious. Creatures of earth and fire, they bask in the sun unmoving, golden-eyed, watchful. I have an odd ability to summon them. The first occasion was at a chateau in Northern France, sitting on a sun-baked wall. I remarked that it was the kind of place a lizard ought to be, and there, suddenly, was one clinging casually to the vertical stone below me. I did it again on the sandy cliffs near where I live, walking along the path on a summer's day. And again yesterday, a dull heavy, hot day with the odd spot of rain. As soon as I complained that the usual lizards were absent, there they were, six of them, tiny babies in a kind of creche at the edge of the path.

Lizards have sharp senses and will flick away at the slightest movement, so if Lizard appears as your guide he will teach you to be watchful and alert. In dire circumstances they will break off their tail and escape, so they are good for times when you need to escape from negative conditions and leave the past behind. Tiny dragons, they are part of the world of myth and dreams, so pay attention to your intuition, your dreams and fantasies and be alert for odd coincidences and synchronicities appearing in your life.

13 Aug 2012

Hidden World

I am working in the garden today, sitting under the willow tree in the shade. As I write a dry willow leaf falls off the tree and lands on my arm. A leaf with a strange hole in it, shaped like an eye. Willow speaks to me of the deep feminine, water, the unconscious. She has given me an eye to look through, an inner eye to see her hidden world.

Trees are powerful spiritual teachers. In Native American lore they are sometimes called the Standing People. I love this - the idea that they are deeply rooted, conscious beings, who don’t feel the need to tear around being busy like the rest of us. They simply exist and breathe in stillness, drawing in all that they need from their immediate environment. There are mysterious presences living around trees too. Beings all around us when we walk through woodland, particularly ancient woods. They stay hidden in woody hollows, wrinkled up under the bark or crannied down under roots, in the dark knotted archways that lead to the underworld. These are the elementals, the ancient inhabitants of the earth.