The Journey Begins

. . . but it has been on-going as well.

A good place to begin this new blog of mine, just a wee-bit on the waning side of Litha (midsummer solstice).

Who am I?

My name is Wol Ulchabhan.

(Actually it’s Michael but Wol is my Bardic name . . .)

I have journeyed the waking-world seven and fifty years at the time of this writing.
The Owl and the Turtle are my sign.
Hawk and Eagle are my friends.
But mostly I’m a ragamuffin and vagabond just tryin’ to figure it all out like everyone else.

These are my stories . . .

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Emptiness

It has always struck me as odd that Christians (one of my tribes) have as the main icon of their faith the symbol of the cross. For me, that speaks volumes. and I am not sure it is a healthy or good “speak”. I mean, I get it. The cross and everything. But I don’t believe that should be the main focus. I really don’t think that was the “original intent”, so to say. As an aspiring amateur attempting to harmonize with the reality and inner presence of the Jewish carpenter and winemaker named Yeshua, I sometimes wonder if a focus on the cross is unhealthy. Sort of an over-focus on death.

Not that death is something we should be afraid about or reluctant to discuss. I firmly believe that coming to grips with our shadow-self is a necessary and good thing. Death, in a sense, is the ultimate shadow universe. But I digress . . .

Perhaps a better focus is that of emptiness. As in the empty tomb. That emptiness speaks much more to me. It speaks of life. It speaks that death is not the final answer. Merely a transition. That in all things, Love wins.

It also calls to me. To be empty. It has been said that a Buddhist saying goes like this: “The usefulness of a cup is in it’s emptiness.” As I surrender and let go, as I die to the imperial “Me” (Ego!)  (not an easy thing, I KNOW . . .) Life becomes more abundant. In moments of clarity the reality manifests: Death to self is the gateway to Life. The emptiness of the tomb gives a hint to that. The natural world does too. All around us now is the greening time. Life is virtually bursting forth all around us. But I must remember that, for now, it wouldn’t be possible if not for the die-ing time of Autumn and Winter. That time of letting go, surrender. Emptying.

Perhaps one day Emptiness will be celebrated. Maybe the Empty Tomb will come to better represent the faith & message of my Christian tribe. I hope so.

Mo druí, Mac Dé the Eternal Greenman

“My Druid, the Son of God. The Eternal Greenman.”

Coming out of the Sleep of Winter. The trees are awakening.

And the symbol that resonates with me is that of the Greenman. A symbol of rebirth, renewal. Resurrection. As the Celtic Wheel of the year turns now to the greening time, I am reminded by all of creation that mercies are new every morning. That each day is a gift of Life. A New chance, a new beginning. “Behold! I make all things New” said Yeshua. And so I give thanks to my Chief Druid Yeshua, first-child of Creator-Maker. He who is All-Father and paradoxically All-Mother (El-Shaddai: “The Many Breasted One” . I.E.: There’s enough to go around. ~ Selah ~).

In the chaos of this out-of-synch world-system, I take refuge in the Song of Creation that brings me peace, that calls to me to breathe and be. To join with all of Creation in it’s groaning for Redemption, Renewal and Rebirth.

“That’s why I don’t think there’s any comparison between the present hard times and the coming good times. The created world itself can hardly wait for what’s coming next. Everything in creation is being more or less held back. God reins it in until both creation and all the creatures are ready and can be released at the same moment into the glorious times ahead. Meanwhile, the joyful anticipation deepens.” (The Book. Romans 8:19. Message version)

Be Green. Breathe. Be. Awen Amen.

ENOUGH!

Fasten your seat belt. This is going to be a raw, rough & bumpy ride . . . a VERY LONG ride . . .

I get it. I really do. Having grown-up in a John Wayne world of rugged individualism where “grit & toughness” was valued at the highest level, where Colt and Smith&Wesson were the great equalizers. It was (& sadly still is) the culture that gave birth to the phrase “you can take my gun from my cold, dead hand.
I get it, I really do. But I got news for you:
John Wayne is dead. Rugged Individualism is a myth, a fantasy that I’m not sure was ever a reality. And even if it was, it’s time is over. We have to find another way of being.

We need to DEEPLY examine the foundation of the core of our being.

I get it, I really do. The fear . . . the understandable, even justifiable, fear that while I love my country, I don’t trust my government (any government as a matter of fact) as far as I could spit. And , the theory goes, if I am without weapons, if the powers that be take away “my right” to have a weapon (that’s what it is folks. It’s not an “arm”, if is a weapon for killing. It’s not about hunting or providing meat for the table. It is about having the power & means to quickly kill someone. another human being. To quickly kill . . . efficiently.) So to continue . . . tat there would not be anything from stopping said powers that be from becoming a dictatorship. Which is a threat to our freedom. At least, that’s the ideal.

Of course it begs the question: How “free” are we really???

I get it. I really do. At one point I was right there. I was becoming a “survivalist”. You not only had to have at least enough supplies to last 72 hours on your own, but you had to have a modern weapon for “defense” . . . and AT LEAST 3000 rounds of ammo. And so the logic went that you wanted to be at least armed as well as, if not better,than the evil hordes coming down your street coming to get you and your family.

I get it, I really do. I mean I am all down for protecting my family, my neighborhood. If a foreign or domestic power comes for me & mine, I will have no problem in fighting to protect my friends and family. I will fight for my country. For what is right. Yes, that means violence and blood-shed. A cold grim fact. Yes, it would be best if, thru dialog, debate, reason and compassion if such a conflict could be avoided. But when “they” are coming down the street with weapon in hand . . . it’s too late.

That’s the reality. That’s the “logic” . . . BUT . . . It’s been over twenty years since I was in that “survivalist” mind set. By Grace from the Divine Source of All Origin, a whisper came to me and asked: Do you really want to live in a world where in order to “live” you have to be armed to the teeth? What kind of world is that? Is that really LIVING???

The answer is “No, it’s not”. it’s not living, it’s life. It is death. Death of our soul, death of Being. Death of our humanity. And no matter your spiritual path, it is the death of our divinity.

I don’t want to live in a world of death. I can’t. None of us can. (BTW, there is no “them & us”. There is just us . . .)

Yes we need to have a military. Yes, we need to have a police force and a fair, balanced AND compassionate Rule of Law.

But we DO NOT NEED to have military style weapons in the hands of civilians. no civilian needs an AR “what ever”. If you are a cop or soldier, yeah . . . you do need the best military equipment . . . which includes a weapon. But I don’t need (nor want) one. Yeah, yeah, I know . . . “but what about the gangs?” and all that. That’s what we have a police force and military for. Is it perfect? No. Will it always stop the violence from coming down the street to deal death & destruction to me and mine? Nope. But I remember a wise man who once said “Those who live by the sword shall die by the sword” . . .
We have to stop the insanity. We are “existing” in a world right now . . . IN OUR NATION . . . where schools, businesses and institutions ARE having “active shooter response training”.
I have a couple grandchildren. I don’t want them growing up in fear. Of the very real possibility of some whack bozo coming into their school and killing dozens. Hundreds.THOUSANDS . . .
This is fucking insane. And it’s gotta end. You & me having a cache of mass death-dealing weapons ain’t gonna fix the problem. Because we will be at work, going about our daily business when the next whack-bozo brings death & darkness.
Arm the teachers?!? OH the profanities I could evoke on that piece of whack-logic . . . Most teachers have a nurturing/healing aspect to the core of their being. And turning them into, requiring them to be soldiers is insane. Totally.INSANE. Picture it: Mr./Mrs./Ms. Teacher comes into a classroom, THE classroom of your kid or grand-kid . . . Packing??? Really??? The equally insane idea of a “trained and armed professional” on campus. WTF?!? Our schools are now a war zone. That is JUST WRONG.

No. I don’t want a military style weapon. I don’t need one. Neither does any other civilian. To insist on having one as “your right” is to perpetuate the problem. To participate in death and destruction . . . of everyone. Of your kids, your grandkids, your loved ones.

I can’t live in a world like that. I WON’T live in a world like that. Because I realized all those years ago that the “survivalist” lifestyle, the “True Grit, “From my Cold, Dead hands”, the “John Wayne” lifestyle ain’t no way of living. It’s a not a life style. It is a “Death Style” straight from the pits of Hell.
I want no part of it. I think of my kids, my grand-kids. Of those young adults in Florida that have been robbed from us.I shake & weep deeply for this tragedy and all the others that have happened. There are no words that can adequately convey the depth of my sorrow, the wound to my soul, the righteous anger and simultaneously drives to weep and scream . . .
It’s enough. IT’S ENOUGH! Stop the insanity!

Some where between 250 million ( MILLION!) and 300 million “firearms” exist in the USA. That’s enough to arm every man, woman and child (plus some). A lot of them with high-capacity death.Stop. Just FUCKING STOP!!! Stop making them (except for our ACTIVE military and police forces). Get the ones that are out there (the AK’s the AR’s the high-capacity whatever . . .) off the streets, out of the homes . . . and DESTROY them. Perfect solution. Nope. It’s gonna take time. We have spent decades, nigh onto a century or more . . . of creating this nightmare. It’s gonna take time to climb out of this hole of death that we have dug ourselves into.
Stop the excuses, the “what-ifs” and the “but what abouts”. The old arguments don’t work anymore . . . neither do the old “reasons”. Neither villify or demonize the “other”. No more scape-goating. No more is it the “others” problem. It’s our problem. It’s the blood on our own hands because we have chosen death over Life. I can’t live in a world like that. I WON’T live in such a world. AND I AM THROUGH WITH SETTING ON MY BUTT on this. I WILL SPEAK TRUTH to the Powers that be. NO MORE! STOP IT! FIND A WAY! STOP MAKING DEATH A BUSINESS BECAUSE YOU ARE IN SOMEONE’S POCKET!

Find a way. Do it. I just to point a finger at those powers. For I realize I have three more of that same hand pointing back at me. Change starts with me. I chose a new way of being. One that seeks Life. That gives life, encourages LIFE. Life & Light. No death & destruction. That means the old paradigms, the old perspectives have to go. Change. Evolve.

I hope that you will too.

Shalom, Love & Grace guide us all and help us in this immense time of grief and sorrow.
God(s) Bless those kids who are taking a stand and saying
ENOUGH!

Silence & Solitude 2: Inner Axioms

Silence & Solitude challenge our Ego. They invite us to relax and be comfortable in our own skin, embracing all of who we are (which Ego does not).

Ego ramps-up anxiety, seeks distractions from entering into Silence & Solitude. This is akin to “whistling past the graveyard at night” in order to ignore our fear.

Silence & Solitude allow us to enter in that liminal space, the Caol Ait (keel awtch; “Thin Place”) threshold into another world. In that world there is a place of Darkness that awaits. The Ego fears this. But the invite is to embrace the Darkness. It can be daunting as there is the perception that the Darkness could be (and maybe is?) feral. But in contemplation, one comes to realize that Before there was Light, Darkness was. The Spirit brooded over the waters. Life starts in Darkness, Ends(?) in Darkness.

Darkness is feared because it contains the unknown upon which we project our own dark (and often illusionary) imaginings on it’s canvas.

Darkness has a great, big Question Mark.

Owls do not fear the dark. Turtles swim in the deep, dark places.

Lessons of Silence & Solitude: 1

Ash, Oak, Maple and Mulberry tree . . . Standing naked, prepared for long wintry sleep.

They do show us something, whisper to us . . . lullaby so sweet.

Rest! Rest! Rest! Do not fear the dark. You began your Journey in the darkness of the womb, and where the paths of all glory do end, so in you will too! (the tomb!)

But fear not! Wondrous things prepare whilst you sleep. Again you will awaken, green-leaf new! Rest well now, fear not the dark. New life awaits, divine light works in you and keeps kindled the spark.

Fellowship

Fellowship. We are all in this Journey together. Each and everyone of us, with all our strengths and weaknesses. Our Angels and demons. It is easy to lose sight of this. That is okay, don’t beat yourself up about it. Pain, suffering . . . desire can all become distracting. When you recognize this, be gentle with yourself and return to center . . . Re-orient. Realize that the Divine Source of All Origin desires Mercy, not sacrifice. Gently restore those who have lost focus as well, for we all too have this in common. Always look for the deep beauty; not the transient beauty that withers like the grass . . . but the Deep Beauty that endures: The beauty of the moment, the beauty that is eternal, transcendent and imminent. The beauty that is like a solid rock but yet living, dynamic. A beauty that has you, that has me. Breathe!

Living & Dying

Living & Dying . . .
Winning & Loosing . . .
“Then Jesus went to work on his disciples. “Anyone who intends to come with me has to let me lead. You’re not in the driver’s seat; I am. Don’t run from suffering; embrace it. Follow me and I’ll show you how. Self-help is no help at all. Self-sacrifice is the way, my way, to finding yourself, your true self. What kind of deal is it to get everything you want but lose yourself? What could you ever trade your soul for?” Matthew 16:25 “The Message”.

The last of the 3 harvests are over. The natural world is full set prepared for the long sleep of winter. To everything turn, turn, turn. There is a season for everything; A time to be born and a time to die.

The Divine Source of All Origin shows us, through nature, the necessary cycles that must occur for life to come. In order for me to truly live, to become anew, to be evergreen . . . then I must die.
Die to my old views, to let go of my old perspectives that no longer serve. To let go of that which has withered and faded. To embrace this season of death so that I might live in a new way.
The trees, the fields . . . all of nature know this. They are prepared for this “death” for they know that new life awaits.

Do you want to live? Then die. Oh I know, it is a tough challenge. We human beings tend to not want to let go. we resist change. But how can one become a great oak if one insists on staying an acorn? Or a giant Sequoia if insisting on staying a seed-cone?

“Put aside the ranger; Become who you were born to be!” . . . what would have happened if Aragorn had chosen to stay a ranger? If Eowyn had decided to “keep her place”? I could go on, but I hope you get the picture. The false self, the old self must die.
In the faith path I follow, there is the Divine Promise of New Life, True Life . . . True Freedom. True Being, knowing and being known.
Just let go . . .