“I was born on the night of Samhain, when the barrier between the worlds is whisper-thin and when magic, old magic, sings its heady and sweet song to anyone who cares to hear it.” ~Carolyn MacCullough
May you be as One with Nature’s Rhythms, embrace The Great Mystery, and in Sacred Union with Spirit.
As February winters come to a close, we wave goodbye to days of pink hearts and roses and say hello to green sprouts of Spring. Interesting that both Valentine’s and St. Patrick’s Day both carry an air of blossoming new hope and renewal of joyful splendor, where matters of the heart and life are concerned. Also notable are the colors associated with each, pink and green, both coincidentally representative of the energy of the Heart Chakra. So is green, just the new pink of Spring?
With the approaching “March” on life, we discover flowering blooms abound, precious first breaths and steps from our dear animal friends, and the onset of springtime cleaning of both our inner and outer closets, as we all take stock of what to let go of, and the new we would like to usher in. For many, that new involves change and the desire to let our dreams flourish and our hearts fill with hope. Optimism and abundance are irresistibly bountiful; helping us forget any lingering, dismal feelings. We find ourselves singing a new tune, as the melodies of birds and the phosphorescence of vibrant butterfly swarms enrapture our hearts.
But what do we know of this “green little gig” that envelopes our souls with such needed freshness? A little “Luck of the Irish” might just take us farther than we are aware, so let’s explore. Here is what one Historian, Jason Spence, has to say:
“St. Patrick is the origin of the ‘Luck of the Irish.’ He was a kidnapped Brit who was enslaved and found God on the hills herding sheep as a slave. He escaped. Became a Bishop and returned to bring the faith to the Pagan Irish who believed in the Druids. He received inspiration from God to use the three leaf clover called a shamrock, to explain the Trinity to his flocks who were the descendants of the Celts and Viking invaders. They believed in the ancient Druid’s religion of magic and many gods of nature. That there occurs four leaf clovers was explained that they were the result of God’s melting the Druid beliefs with the Trinity of the Christian beliefs. Irish soldiers conscripted into the British army began wearing the shamrock on their uniforms to bring them “magic” and avoid being killed in battle. Because they were blessed and used by St. Patrick, they believed they were on God’s side and protected by God. This is known as “Wearing of the Green.”
Green, yes green. A color that represents many things to many people–a melting pot of symbolism. The word green is closely related to the Old English verb growan, meaning “to grow.” And isn’t that what Spring is all about? Everything blooming, growing…a never-ending, cyclical process. Growth is our natural state and anything less than this, simply is “unnatural.” Speaking of which, the most common association for green seems to be found in its ties to nature, naturally. Culturally, green has much broader and sometimes contradictory meanings, ranging from it symbolizing hope and growth, to death, sickness, or even what some might call “evil.” Romans used green holly and evergreen as decorations for their winter solstice celebration, Saturnalia, which evolved into a green celebration called Christmas. It is also the traditional color of Islam and was symbolic of resurrection and immortality in Ancient Egypt, where the god Osiris was also depicted as green-skinned. Irish legend states that green clothes attract faeries and aid crops and the “Wearing of the Green” thus symbolizes the birth of springtime. It is known to signify witchcraft for its association with spirits of early English folklores and literatures that also traditionally use it to symbolize nature and its embodied attributes of life, fertility, and rebirth. In metaphysics, the Seven Rays system of Alice Bailey, which classifies different metaphysical personality types of humans, designates those of the third ray of creative intelligence as being “on the Green Ray,” while psychics who see auras refer to those with a green aura as typically having health/healing related occupations and being nature lovers. To me, green is the earth and it’s gardens and the caring for it. It’s the color that stimulates transformation, harmony, fertility, abundance and prosperity, endurance, stability, and regal presence. It represents safe passage (like the green traffic light), balances emotions, calms, and is also the alchemy of consciousness from one realm to another through the spiraling energies of DNA. The feeling of green is earthy and yet still feels very much like liquid, with a fluidity that is enchanting. Think enchanted forest or Emerald Bay of our very own Lake Tahoe, Nevada. And yet mostly, for me, green denotes love.
It is in the stories of the medieval period and in Hinduism that we come to learn how green is a true expression of the all-encompassing heart. Medieval stories portrayed it as representing love and the base, natural desires of man, while the Hindu’s use it to symbolically represent the fourth or Heart Chakra. You see, not only is pink indicative of love and the heart, but green is also a very powerful color linked with unconditional love. This fourth Chakra lies center of our Chakra energy system and is the most powerful energy, in my opinion, that exists. It acts as a bridge between the upper and lower three Chakras; a bridge between all worlds and illusionary divisions. As our Heart Chakra, green has great healing power and protective qualities. It is the one thing we humans can use powerfully when we learn to naturally access it and stay centered in the presence of it’s energy constantly. The Heart Chakra is an impenetrable force of healing that has no boundaries or limitations. It asks that we see, feel, think, and act on a whole other level that is motivated by nothing more than love. When we come from the purity of our hearts and commit to that compassion and acceptance, it implores us to embrace the essence of our being and know the beauty of all of existence, as an extension of ourselves. The Heart Chakra is the jewel of all Chakras, and it’s green energy is the emerald beauty of all gems.
Coincidentally, this brings us back to where we began. Back to a little “Luck of the Irish” energy. It just so happens that the most prominent Irish ring is the Claddagh ring, which has a history dating back to over 300 years and is one of history’s most meaningful and respected jewels. The features of the Claddagh ring symbolize some of the best virtues of human life. The heart held in the hands show love and the hands represent friendship and togetherness, the crown on the heart symbolizes loyalty–all virtues that have increasingly been forgotten in today’s materialistic world. No wonder many people remain fascinated by this Irish ring. People wish that some things would never change. And even though change is natural and inevitable, the core foundation of love that has transcended time, is one thing it wouldn’t hurt to hold on to, and could only benefit us more as we deepen and broaden through its evolvement. Our values and how we treat and honor ourselves, others, and everything around us are telling of what we see as our creation, in respect. Another description of the ring expresses how the heart represents the hearts of each and every member of mankind, in addition to the element which gives everlasting music to the Gael. (Remember that springtime song of birds and love ringing in our ears). The ring is also based on and directly correlative to the Shamrock, one of the oldest symbols of the Holy Trinity among the Irish. This interpretation describes the crown as a symbol of the Father, the left hand as the Son, and the right hand as the Holy Spirit, all caring for the heart in the center, symbolizing humanity. Throughout each varying symbolism, a single theme shines through, specifically that the ring symbolizes the trinity of “Love, Loyalty, and Friendship” or, in Gaelic, “Grá, Dílseacht agus Cairdeas” (pronounced ‘graw, dealshocked ogis cordiss’).
“The hands are there for friendship,
The heart is there for love.
For loyalty throughout the year,
The crown is raised above.”
Taking all of this into account, it becomes very clear, why we find ourselves immersed in good feelings, as we leap into Spring. With all this energy of beauty, renewal, healing, life, and love, it’s no wonder we don’t opt to wear, live, and breathe green all year round. And yet we can, because although the seasons change, the one thing that remains constant, but ever-growing, is the emanating power of our hearts. I am then reminded of the English folksong, “Greensleeves,” which echoes green as the color of lightness in love and the anonymous Irish street ballad, “The Wearing of the Green,” published by Dion Boucicault, from the Irish Rebellion of 1798, which ends in these words:
“And where, please God, we’ll live and die still wearin’ o’ the green!”
Through that emerald glow of love, we can create and be in that lovely energy any moment of the eternity of our lives. And the more we share our green, we can carpet the earth with velvet lawns of unconditional experience. Wearing love and life on our sleeves for always. Sounds good to me! Let us remember and reflect while we embrace the opportunity to begin anew, by planting tomorrow seeds, in the now of today.
Happy Chinese New Year of the Magical Rabbit! As I sit here reflecting on the many things going on for me presently that tie into what rabbit years are about, I’m reminded of the synchronous and timely unfoldings taking place. The Year of the Rabbit holds many positive and supportive energies to be excited about. Look forward to more calm, peace, diplomacy, creativity, artistic expression, developing & birthing new projects, consistent ambition, good communication, solid, steady growth and endurance and luck and ease of financial flow. In honor of the Rabbit and my dear little ones, Nestor (my magical soul mate whom passed 3 years ago and whose birthday was just 2 days ago synchronously) and Joy (my new little lop earred friend and healing companion whom Nestor brought into my life), I’d like to share this article I wrote about how we too can embrace the “magician within”:
Our fascination with “magic” conjures up visions of mystique and intrigue that we seem to long for in our lives. History and stories of lore have mystified and enchanted us, continually tantalizing our desires to quench that unnerving thirst for a bit of the miraculous. Modern day magicians continue their predecessors’ practice of illusionary entertaining, satisfying our need to believe in something more; our need for a bit of mystery and a taste of the exotic. This desire and quest for the power of magic has spanned the ages, leaving us now with aspirations to capture some of that sparkle in the here and now. From the hierophants of ancient Egypt to the alchemists of the Middle Ages, from the Mayan high priests, to the Celtic druids, whether medicine men, sorcerers, or wizards of legend and fairy tale, these workers of wonders and miracles have left their mark beyond the world of their day. And let us not forget the high priestesses and druidesses, prophetesses and witches, medicine women and shamans, and our beautiful fairy queens. Magic has no gender. It also has no boundaries. And yet, who are these magicians, these conjurers of enchantment? Are they truly something for us to dream about and place in awe, as we project an omniscient quality onto that which seemingly is outside of ourselves? Or is there more to this “magician thing” than meets the eye? And what about that rabbit?
Actually, aren’t we all wanting simply to lead more of a so-called “charmed life?” It seems the desire to be magicians of our experiences and masters of our destinies is one we all share. Some people seem to naturally emanate a magical quality and we can see it in that sparkle from their eyes, that glow of an aura they exude, the way whatever they touch in their path seems to light up, almost like pixie dust that traverses any room they enter. And then some of us simply need to realize that if we can see in others such miracles of wonder, then we are closer to it than we think. Those of this nature merely mirror our own inner magician–the one whom we can call upon to cast our own magical spells of enchantment whenever we so choose. We just have yet to realize that magic is simply our innate art of creative power. Recognize it, exercise it, utilize it, and what do you know, “abracadabra,” you have yourself the ingredients for some home-made magic stew!
Speaking of “abracadabra,” let’s turn back the page to our friend the rabbit and the meaning of this most inane word. I think we’ve been missing something. Here is what Magic Words: A Dictionary, by Craig Conley has to say:
“There is profound meaning in the clichéd image of a magician pulling a rabbit out of an empty hat with the magic word abracadabra. The magician is speaking an ancient Hebrew phrase that means ‘I will create with words.’ He is making something out of nothing, echoing that famous line from Genesis: ‘Let there be light, and there was light,’ only in this case the light is a white rabbit and perhaps a flash of fire. The magic word, whether it be abracadabra or another of the magician’s choosing, resonates with the audience because there is an instinctive understanding that words are powerful, creative forces. ‘The word has always held an ancient enchantment for humans,’ says scholar Ted Andrews. ‘It hints of journeys into unseen and unmapped domains.'”
Enough said I think. Magic is a primitive power of creation through whatever means we use. Things take on magical qualities because of the energy we give it and the belief we put behind it. The power of language, personal meanings, and symbols enlighten and inspire us to create pure wonder and awe whenever they are spoken, connected with, or simply seen, worn, or held in our experience. We are the masters of projecting ourselves and our power onto everything around us, not realizing the magic skeleton key to everything we desire was always there within us. That’s not to say we shouldn’t have personal talismans and symbols or enchanting words in our lives. Sometimes the simple joy of that projection can help us to connect more deeply with ourselves and the collective around us, seeing and understanding how we are all so similar, all sharing the experience of the wonder of the world and all the beauty it holds for us each to see in it, the mirror of our own magical essence.
Symbols are beautiful and powerful things. The Egyptians carried amulets and magic figurines and Greeks sought out priests called Oracles. Alchemists searched to discover magical substances to turn lead into gold, cure disease, and extend life. We all need to believe in a bit of magic, yet the elixir of life is simply believing in you.
It is our friend the rabbit who holds all the magician’s answers to his, her, OUR projected magic. And we come to see how the rabbit is the true key to the magician’s power. Embrace and become your own inner rabbit and you too will discover an enchanted world of your own creation.
*Dedicated to, and inspired by, Nestie aka Nestor. Love is magic and I know no greater magic than the love between myself and my very own rabbit, Nestor, who has shown me the meaning of the Rabbit’s Magician and beyond.