Not Pride, But Hope

I am not proud to be an American right now.

I’m ashamed of our president, of our politics in general, of our national consummeristic identity that says if I want it and I can’t buy it then I’ll take it by force.

I’m not without hope, though.

Our history, as a country is about more than its wars and corruption of leadership responsibilities.

For instance, I’m proud of my great grand father, Ed Archer, who staked a claim on land outside of kenna, NM. He didn’t kill anyone to get it. He was just a man who wanted to find a way to live day by day. He lived with wife and children in a humble dugout until an above ground house could be built. He was the kind of man who would re-light the kerosene lantern for his daughter because she said, “Daddy, I can’t see to close my eyes.”

I’m tired of being identified by our leaders whom I, as an individual, seem to have very little control over.

How can those of us who are just trying to live each day in a way that is kind and meaningful, reclaim our stake in this country?

From where I stand, I need to acknowledge that it wasn’t me or my family who took this land away from those who had first rights to it. I had no control over what happened in our country’s infancy. I don’t like it. I don’t like the idea that someone can force a whole people out of their place just because greed and entitlement so dictate. But I can’t change the past.

I can’t change where my great- grandparents raised their family, where my grandparents lived, or where my mother lived when I was born.

So much of a person’s daily life and world views depend on circumstances far beyond an individual’s control.

I’m trying to find a way to say to my international friends that I was born in America, but that does not tell you who I am, what makes me feel proud or what makes me cringe from shame.

I am the great grand daughter of a man who raised sheep and goats on a homestead in New Mexico.

I am the kind of mother who would turn the light back on so my child could see to shut her eyes.

I am the kind of neighbor who makes a cake for the selfless and hardworking woman who lives next door because she did our yard work, without being asked, when we couldn’t do it.

I’m the kind of American who struggles with health and money and relationships just like everyone in every other country I know.

How can I reclaim my own identity and shake off this national shame? How can I show the rest of the world that I extend my heart and my hand even if my country won’t?

I am not proud to be linked with an image of the America our current politely system portrays, or that of a new country that forced it’s way onto land that didn’t belong to them. But I am not without hope that after a diet of crow, I will be able to stand up, extend my hand and say to anyone from anywhere, “Please, come in and let me get you a cup of tea while we put our heads together and work to solve the problems common to every single one of us, no matter where we happen to be born.”

The First Step

Thank you, teacher, for reminding me

Of this holy opportunity,

To let go of preconceived notions

As I step into the unknown.

What glorious wonders appear

Right before my eyes!

The kitten on my desktop, my faithful dog underneath,

The morning breezes playing catch me if you can through open skies and the arms of trees.

Oh, this precious earth whirling round in star studded space, I pray that I’ll never forget, not for a moment, the magnitude of grace that keeps unfolding, a blossom full of seed for the miracles yet to be revealed, even now in earth’s hour of dire need.

I vow to walk each step, today, as mindfully as I am able.

Please take my hand, if you can, and we’ll take the path while singing.

No one knows what our future holds but it’s only love for all of this, and for you and you and you, only such love that so peirces the heart that is light enough to carry and worth bringing.


Joy Brown is a genius and is the smarter and prettier of the inseparable pair that we were in college.

She and I grew up our soulfulness together. We were nourished with thought food like The Bat Poet, by Randal Jarrell, Finnegan’s Wake and everything Joycey. We were dazzled by Arcularus and James Dickey made us cry while we waited for Godot in the parking lot after classes.

She has begun to channel a colorful portion of her genius into making quilts.

This is after raising baby birds that had to be nursed back to life, making so many beautiful, sturdy baskets and bassinet by hand that she had to dye them because her own blood stained the weave.

She goes with her husband, Michael on trips to disaster areas to feed, clothe, house and comfort people after hurricanes and tornadoes. And this only accounts for one day of the week. Lol.

Anyway, she gave me permission to show case her art a la textile.

Here are a couple of quilts to start. Please keep checking back as I will add more when I get my photos together.

This is a pic from 8/26/19
This one has a fancy three dimensional dog effect
New quilt top came in the mail. I’ll spread it out in a minute


The thing I do like about my shaman is that he is just a man. I don’t have to bow and scrape when I talk to him. That’s a luxury when I’m upset and don’t feel like putting on my goody two shoes.

Last night I was able to vent to him about a man who betrayed me. A man who was as cold hearted as a snake, who then went on to talk about himself as if he were a saint. Shaman helped me hold my own tongue and avoid a battle-dance.

I can’t believe that I used to enjoy the company of the former friend. How fickle we are! We can think someone or something is wonderful and in an instant it turns to shit.

So having a down to earth shaman, one that I can talk to without pretense is a good thing. I am grateful for his guidance.

If I am in a crappy situation, I’m talking about the kind of situation that could drag me into despair and I want to get out of it, or get through it, I can go to my shaman and ask for help or advise.

He doesn’t have to be put on a pedestal and I don’t have to wait for a crisis to ask for help; he likes to help me. The benefit of communicating telepathically is that he can help more people than he could if he had to rely on standard travel.

Mother Teresa said that the way to help the world is to start with one. “One, one, one.” The fancy thing about One is that it is exponentially expansive. The deeper I look into One the more I see the infinite complexity of all creation. It is the miracle of singularity.

I am not referring to the ominous technological singularity but to the singularity of consciousness.

“At the Consciousness Singularity, our consciousness will be expanded beyond the confines of an egocentric sense of self to include transpersonal experiences and transcendent self-identity. This new existence will be both a form of collective consciousness and a form of expanded individual consciousness. ” (, Shawn Mikula)

Many people have had glimpses of the Secret of One. I slipped into one once and ended up being in two places at once.

A friend and I were on our lunch break in a hospital cafeteria. I told her that I felt weird, like I wasn’t all there. She said, “Where are you?’ she encouraged me to think before answering. She told me to look around and see what I could see.

I closed my eyes, relaxed, and realized I could see a street in a sunny place where there had been lots of rain. I was outside of a gun or pawn shop. A man walked by and our eyes met briefly, acknowleding one another’s presence.

The sunshine looked different—the lighting didn’t look like it does in New Mexico, and the vegetation was tropical. I guessed it was Belize, where my husband is from.

Later that day, when I described my experience to him he said it was a street in Belize. I described it to a tee.

This was more than a vision. I could feel the breeze from the ocean. I could feel the sun. And that man could see me! Brief as it had been, the man I passed on the street interacted with me when our eyes met. So I know it can be done.

I think Shaman does something like that when he visits me. I don’t know how it works but it is fascinating. i want to learn more. and how will I go about learning this?

One event at a time.

I Don’t Like Him

I don’t know when I started to feel this way, but I really don’t like my shaman right now. He farts and scratches himself and he won’t change his Levi’s if he thinks he can get one more day out of them. He is not a holy man. He is just a man.

I guess every relationship boils down to this: disillusionment.

The woman isn’t captivating anymore; the man is suddenly weak and ineffectual.

It is proving to be the same with shamans, only it has happened much faster than usual.

I still want to meet with him; This might just be temporary disenchantment. I suspect a hidden lesson.

Some of the saints talked about going through dry spells during which their prayers felt phony and they got zero consolation for their spiritual efforts. They said the best thing to do in dry periods was to do the practices anyway because soon the good energy would come back and they would have a deeper understanding of God and the universe. But it is hard to muster up a real prayer when you are not feeling it.

It’s hard to stay with someone when we start to recognize that our dream lover, friend, or beloved project, doesn’t thrill us anymore.

Shaman is inviting me to go deeper into the dissatisfaction. My body resists. I feel sleepy and tired. He tells me to go deeper into the discomfort, to simply observe it.” He says, Remember who you are.” But he is not as intense as I am so it’s not taxing. He says it plain and simple like he’s waiting for something.

(I feel Shaman’s eyes on me now. He is smiling because I am getting his message.)

There is a connection that goes beyond liking or not liking a person. we can get to a point where we are flowing with a natural current of energy. I am trying to develop that kind of awareness

Alcoholics Anonymous has a slogan that encourages members to use respect even if we don’t like what someone says. The spirit in the room is allowed to flow freely because our focus is on “principles before personality.”

Shaman is teaching me to appreciate what I have here and now. The comfortable and uncomfortable are blessings and I am learning to accept them both as grist for the mill.

The mourning dove cries out: :Straw-ber-ry soup! Straw-ber-ry soup.


Communicating with my shaman is not the same as listening to God. There is a difference between the still small voice and Shaman.

Shaman is a living, flesh and blood man who lives in North America. He is alive and well. He teaches all over the place.

I wanted to be his student but figured I’d have to wait a million years to have the means to travel.

Then, out of the blue I heard him speak. He was in the Quiet World so his voice was inaudible. He said, “Why wait?”

I didn’t believe him right away. I have a lot of the proverbial voices in my head that dowse creative ideas, hopes and dreams as soon as they spark.

“What if you are just a figment of my imagination?” I asked.

“Ha! Imagination is necessary in this kind of work. It’s like the gas in your car. The car takes you places, and that is like the actions you will take from these teachings. But the thing that makes the car go is imagination.

You gotta use your imagination for this; you think I’m gonna do all the work?”

When It Rains

Image result for shaman in the rain

I can’t make it out to the sound garden today. When it rains hard, like it did last night, the ground is too mushy to walk on. There’s not much grass to catch the blessing so the dirt has to hold it all. When there is downpour, sometimes it takes a few days to let it all soak in. It’s a pain in the ass in the mean time—all the mud sloshing, all the mess. Blessings are not always pretty and packaged up like a present so you know it is a gift. Sometimes they are just hard to deal with.

Some blessings hurt, and I don’t like them, but I am learning to accept them and be just as grateful for the hurtful ones because the gifts they bear are truly exquisite. Anyway, accepting them makes the hurt seem like a good thing, like when you exercise and feel your new strength the next day.

I don’t know what pain has to do with time, but Shaman is telling me to think about time them combined.

I found this quote in my Facebook Memory post when I opened my computer.

“Of course a man can go back in time, and forward too if he knows how to travel. He doesn’t need a thing, no suitcase or extra clothes. all he needs is what he knows he doesn’t know.”

I don’t know who said this, but Shaman said it’s only half true.

When we wipe the slate clean by realizing we don’t know a thing, then we have to be willing to accept new understanding when it comes, even if it goes against conventional wisdom.

That is a tricky one.

Most people don’t really believe a person can slip into different realms of being and talk to people or get work done except on the physical plane, but it is not only possible, it is highly effective.

Shaman is teaching me to trust my insight. I like that word, insight. It can mean gaining an inner knowing, but it can also mean looking inward and really seeing something new.

When was the last time you looked inside and saw something entirely new? It is a rush. I like it.

That means, though, that I have to be proven wrong sometimes; I have to unknow something. It also means that I get hurt. My ego takes a blow.

This morning I am glad Shaman was around when I was told that my feet are crumbling because I’m fat.


I had to process that statement to see if it was true or not.

It is not true that my weight had anything to do with getting arthritic bones–that started when I was young and fit. But as the arthritis got worse, my activities changed. One thing after another happened and wham! Suddenly I am very overweight and the bones in my feet are crumbling. Would they still be crumbling if I were thin? Yes. Does my weight make the condition worse.? Yes.

Accepting responsibility for a problem is not the same thing as accepting blame. This is not about blame. Our lives are way too complex to lay blame down, there are too many threads, too many factors that affect a single action to say that one thing alone was the cause of the other thing.

Accepting responsibility is an act of humility that places one in a position of power. It is a way to say, “Here I am. I will do what I can to make this situation better.”

I am in a position of power to work with Shaman to heal my crumbling bones so that I may be of service to the people I am here to serve. I’ll do my best.

Doing one’s best is the topic for another day.

For now, since I have to climb the steps of a small airplane on Thursday and fly to Dallas, doing my best means resting a little more than I did yesterday and trying to get enough ace bandages on to support my feet until the braces are made. It also means working with Reiki.

Shaman shows me what my bones look like through the eyes of the creator, who knit them together in the first place. That is where I will be working today.

This seems appropriate in the bigger picture as well. It is important to start out learning to be a shaman on good standing. I need a good foundation, stable structure. What better metaphor could nature have provided than the bones of my feet?

“Little feet, little feet, where have you been?

little feet, little feet, where are you going?

Little feet, little feet, can you jump and dance?

If you could, would you give me another chance?”