Deeper into the Forest

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Pulling 

My sweater closer

I walk deeper 

Into the forest

Of ancestors.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2016

“In gratitude, I bow to this land and all of the ancestors who made it available. I see that I am whole, protected, and nourished by this land and all of the living beings that have been here and made life easy and possible for me through all their efforts. I see all those known and unknown. I see all those who have made this country a refuge for people of so many origins and colors, by their talent, perseverence, and love–those who have worked hard to build schools, hospitals, bridges, and roads, to protect human rights, to develop science and technology, and to fight for freedom and social justice. I see myself touching my ancestors who have lived on this land for such a long time and known the ways to live in peace and harmony with nature, protecting the mountains, forests, animals, vegetation, and minerals of this land. I feel the energy of this land penetrating my body and soul, supporting and accepting me. I vow to cultivate and maintain this energy and transmit it to future generations. I vow to contribute my part in transforming the violence, hatred, and delusion that still lie deep in the collective consciousness of this society so that future generations will have more safety, joy, and peace. I ask this land for its protection and support.”  ~III Touching of the Earth, Thich Nhat Hanh, Plum Village

Continuation

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I stand in a forest

Amongst other trees

Bearing the cold

I stand with patience

I stand with faith

That the spring

Will come again

I stand in a forest

Amongst other trees

Connecting at the root 

I stand in trust

I stand in acceptance

That my essence

Is nourished 

By the Earth

Season after season

I breath 

through my leaves 

Long after

I can no longer stand

In a forest

Amongst other trees

I will continue

to bring balance

To the cycle 

Of love

Because 

I am 

Love.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2016

Broken Branches

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In the nakedness

Of barren pain

Roots

Reach out

For inner healing.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

“What if our religion was each other. If our practice was our life. If prayer, our words. What if the temple was the Earth. If forests were our church. If holy water the rivers, lakes, and ocean. What if meditation was our relationships. If the teacher was life. If wisdom was self-knowledge. If love was the center of our being.” ~Ganga White

*linocut, by Anita Laurence, Winter II

http://anitalaurence.com.au/?page_id=222

Stay the Course

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From its lofty position above the tops of most other trees, the pine reminded ancient peoples of the importance of taking the overview, encouraging objectivity and farsightedness. We are advised to cleanse ourselves of negativity, neither dwelling on mistakes nor apportioning blame. Pine is a symbol of the elevated mind and the birth of the spiritual warrior.   ~Jane Gifford, The Wisdom of Trees

In hushed tones

She whispers,

The Goddess

Of the forest,

‘Stay the course,

It is time

To be

Your own

Master

Amidst the chaos

Cleansing

Your soul

In the

Great stillness

Of

Winter

Solstice

Resting in

The sacred

Heartbeat

Of the forest

Embracing

The healing presence

Of inner light

And

Peace.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

*this post was inspired by the following documentary:

https://www.facebook.com/forestethics/videos/10153503154834221/?theater

Changing Water to Wine

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A brittle leaf

Touched by seasonal patterns

Tenaciously clings

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

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“Blessed. Surrounded by every opportunity in the world.

“Granted to meet in life that which can revitalize and restore and reawaken what was lost, stuck, stopped.

“Given a charge of inner worlds power. A prana of life-giving essence to offer into the most obdurate situations hope and enthusiasm.

“Not put off by coming up against tremendous outward and inward stuff to cut through. Just knowing there is a force, there is a way somehow.

“Bearing a treasure that is priceless. Offered the keys to the kingdom.

“It is simply a matter of calibrating the Living Spirit in all things as supreme. Yet there is something in this worship, in this ritual that is more than the simple basic model would suggest.

“We are here entering upon the mystery of soul remembrance. What does it mean when we can recall in a fragrant fashion all good and essential things and we never can forget them?

“What does it do for us when we immerse ourselves over and again in especially painful and enduring lessons and repetitive experience, yet all throughout we feel and know inside that we can come through and that everybody can come through?

“What this does is to tap a storehouse of spirit spark that is right here available whenever we are ready to surrender to it’s depth of power.

“Usually, we must first exhaust every other way of dealing with what is at hand. Only then do we remember the prayer, the vision, the promise…

“It is a rhythm, a pulse, a knack. Once you get it, you can’t lose it. Then you know the New Birth in all things.”

~Elias Lonsdales

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This new moon in Sagittarius brought up a lot of old wounds and pain for me that still tenaciously cling to the here and now. It happened when I was least expecting it. Thoughts such as, “I have shown up for what I want to grow and expand in my life.” or “I have done the inner work.” placed a perfect fitting mask upon my face that I forgot who I am. Somewhere along the line I got a little lost in some idealistic vision of myself. The intensity of my inner suffering knocked me to the ground like all the fallen leaves and layers of bark upon the forest floor. Though I thought I have been facing reality, I now humbly realize that there are still areas of my life that need the continuation of healing. Instead of thinking negatively about repeating karmic patterns, I choose to mindfully walk through these experiences. I surrender to the mystery of Spirt Essence. My ancestors would call it the Great Spirit. Opening again to the self-love, the experience of I AM. In each breath…being in communion of spirit.

Namaste Beloved.

*the link that inspired this post is from Mysticmama

http://www.mysticmamma.com/new-moon-in-sagittarius-on-december-11th-2015/

October First

October

October first

Wore blue memories

Of a summer sky

As she trailed 

The forest floor

Leaving a crisp 

Autumn scent

Behind.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

*photo credits go to

http://the-forest-of-october.tumblr.com/post/41571433681

Listening to Trees

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The Wind Woman

Awakened tree spirits

Creaking ancient tales

Of bygone days lost to memory

When silence was robed

In the majesty of Mother Earth.

© Salem Islas-Madlo 2015

breathing trees