Friday, November 21, 2008

At Home~

Yesterday my plan was to garden, but then the rains came, and they came down at a nasty angle, and the winds whipped the garden about, and all the leaves that were clinging on to the bare trees for just a little while longer, they let go, and gave themselves back to the damp earth. 

I changed my mind about gardening.  Instead I worked on my book (more on this topic soon), made endless pots of tea and distracted myself from the tedious stages of editing by rearranging my tea shelves and putting all my loose herbs into tidy jars. 

Gus invented a new game involving an Indian blanket and an orange ball. He discovered that if he hid the ball on himself, in the blanket, there was no need to bother with his busy human friend and he could enjoy hours of entertainment, without the slightest desire for human company.  

During all this drinking of tea, and arranging of tea, and re-arranging of words, I paused in my day, chamomile petals and rosehips spilling across the table.  I paused there, hands full of nettles, and I thought to myself, "I feel at home in this moment".  It was a feeling that came bubbling up, like a kind of underground stream, a nourishing spring from a deep down place. Yes, indeed, the feeling was of being "at home," content, perfectly safe, warmth in my bones and love in my heart, as I pottered about, doing all things precious to me, in my little green house, with my fluffy white dog, on this cold rainy old day.

And then I wondered where that feeling of "being at home" comes from, that feeling that assures the heart and makes every little thing okay.  The warm feeling that soothes us to the core and envelopes the soul in a blanket of contentment.  The radiant light of mother that reaches down into the very center of our beings and reminds us of something true, and real, and steeped in love.

Sometimes, for me,  this feeling of home, comes from the physical arrangement of things.  I am someone dedicated to creating 'home' wherever I am, usually it involves cooking something wonderful and allowing the smells to waft through the surrounding air.  When I am camping I create tables from tree stumps and arrange bouquets of flowers in empty wine bottles.  I hang special things in the branches around my campsite, and make soft beds out of cedar bows and wool blankets.  I carefully arrange feathers and stones under moonlight whilst saying prayers for all beings.  I stir pots of chai tea on campfires and let the smells of cardamom and cinnamon rise into the night.  And when my camp is set up, and I have a hot chai cupped in my hands, and the lake is still, and the moon shines bright, I sit beside the warm flames and I feel, at home.

But then sometimes home has nothing to do with arranging physical objects, nothing to do with arranging anything, nothing to do with cooking, or creating, or camping. Like the first time I walked through the streets of Kathmandu, or the feeling I felt upon hearing the sound of wooden flute being played in a Balinese market, or being in the arms of someone I love, or putting my face in the soft fur of my beautiful dog and breathing in the hay barn smell.  

I think the Great Mystics have been discussing this one for a long while.  And I am sure that they are on to something when they say that home is where God is, and that God is everywhere, in everything, in all of us~ 

(Great Mother, Great Spirit, Buddha, Brahma, Allah, Jesus....).

"May the long time sunshine, all love surround you, and the pure light within you guide your way home..." ~Sufi Chant


Anonymous said...

Yes and remember Nao the old old saying, "Home is where the Heart is", and your heart is sooooo big, it is bigger than than the whole wide world, up to the moon and back and ten thousand times to Sugar Lake and Back!!
love mom

ArtSparker said...

Beautiful words from a generous spirit. There is a sense of shelter which the sound of wild weather can make sweeter also.I like the story about Gus, he sounds like a very clever animal.

Can't wait to hear more about this book!

Margaret Ann said...

I too have visited that home feeling by just doing the simplest of things....Ahhh! Your words and thoughts here today sang sweetly to my heart. Thanks!:)

Julia Guthrie said...

Hi *waves from Cornwall, UK*, I just found your lovely blog & wanted to stop by to say hello!


herhimnbryn said...

Yes and when that 'moment' finds you it is balm.

I think simple tasks can help us feel 'present'.