NATIVE EARTH WISDOM
We each have four basic potential powers, which need to be nourished and developed. Each human spirit is responsible for their own four basic types of energy. These are physical-vital energies, emotional-feeling energies, mental thinking and understanding energies, and creative artistic energies. In the Native teachings, everyone can potentially be an artist in some way; for any activity can be an art and anything can be done with an artistic or beauty purpose. The Native Way has even been called, by its grandmother teachers, the Beauty Way; because they know the importance of having this intention in whatever we do.
These four energies also correspond to four main qualities of Great Spirit – Dynamic Power, Sensitive Love, Intelligent Consciousness, and Creative Beauty. These great Qualities can be found in the world, and they can also be realized and expressed by the human spirit. The highest meaning of personal power is the developed ability to realize these Qualities, or these Energies, within ourselves and to express them into the world.
The four aspects of personal power are each related to energy in some way or another. So in each aspect one needs to discover that power, collect and integrate that power, and intentionally work with or use that power. This means that you need to take a personal responsibility in developing personal power.
Each of the powers are available from Great Spirit, from the Universal Source, and yet we each need to consciously work with these universal powers and make them our own. The learned ability to have these powers collected in oneself, and the ability to make use of these powers, makes the universal power personal within us, so that the personal power becomes a reflection of the Universal Power. This is our aim, that we become a wonderful reflection of the Qualities and Powers of Great Spirit. These Qualities and Powers are also found in and through our beloved Earth Mother, so one can also contact and accumulate these from the Earth.
These Universal (and Earth) Powers are related to our physical, emotional, mental, and creative aspects of being. Thus, you learn to collect and control your physical energies, your emotional energies, your mental energies and your creative energies. You become responsible for these energies flowing through you, and in how they express through you. This means having a personal ability to control and make use of your vital energies, your emotions, your thinking mind, and your creative potentials.
Instead of merely reacting to energies and circumstances around you, acquire a sense of your own control and decision in directing or expressing the body, the emotions, the thinking, and the creative potentials. For example you can develop the ability to quiet the mind and direct the mind positively, whenever you wish, or the ability to go into the inner peace at any time, or the ability to tap into a certain creative potential whenever it is needed. This is what we mean by personal power – the ability to concentrate energies within our self and use them positively, and to be responsible for these energies and abilities and your self-expression. Thus, personal power is your own responsibility.
The first energy is vital power, or life power, which we can consciously breathe in from the sun and the earth, and accumulate within our bodies. Vital-life power is the dynamic power of Spirit, experienced as a strong vitality, or maybe as an outgoing expressiveness, or as an energy which wants to do something. We speak here of this as simply the vital energy. We can consciously breathe in this vital energy from the earth and trees. This vital energy is all around us, and there is plenty to go around, so you can receive as much as you can possible handle.
This vital power also strengthens our individual energy field and revitalizes the cells and organs of the body. Vital power is needed to project good energy into the world, into the circle of life, and we need vital energy to be creative and giving. So let yourself breathe in and receive all the vital energy you need, and build this energy into your body with conscious breathing and good exercise or physical work. Vital energy is also received from good natural food, and it can be strengthened by exercise and hard work. In fact, when vital energy is expressed from us into the world, it flows more easily into us and through us. So breathe in the vital, be strengthened by the vital, and express the vital out into the world. Keep the vital flow going.
Sometimes the vital flow gets stuck, and sometimes we hold onto stale energy which makes the vital energy sluggish or disturbed. Therefore, we need to release from our energy field any stale or disturbed energy, or tensions which deplete the vital. We can do this by consciously breathing out and letting go of these tensions and old energies back down to the Earth where they are composted and transformed. This is why purifying yourself of old energies is just as important as accumulating new vital energies.
The second kind of energy is emotional, and the highest quality of this is experienced as sensitive feelings and love. The energy of love is comforting and nourishing to us. We all need this special energy of love. We all need love and to feel loved.
The energy and feeling of love can also be breathed in from Mother Earth and accumulated within us. We can receive feelings of love from people, but also from trees, flowers, and spirits of nature. Love is all around us, if we open ourselves to it. We must first open our hearts and allow the love to come in. If we sit in a beautiful space, with nature all around us, we can consciously breathe in and let in this great love from all directions.
It is often hard to find this love in a world full of closed down hearts or in cities where we hardly know anyone. But we can always feel loved from Mother Earth, if we open ourselves up to this love and allow this love to flow into us. You can even feel loved by flowers and trees. Just begin to open to this love, receive the love and feel the love. The love is there. It really is around you in the world of Nature, because nature is made of love, and the Great Spirit of Love flows through the Mother Earth and out to all Her children. This is the power of feeling loved and loving, and feeling at one in the Great Spirit of Love.
We must first open our hearts and allow the love to come in, and if we sit in a beautiful space, with nature all around us, we can consciously breathe in and let in this great love from all directions. Allow yourself to be completely filled with this love. It may come to you as a feeling of being cared for, being nurtured, and being accepted, or it may come as a feeling of great peace, or joy, or hope. By opening in this way and consciously receiving love, you begin to actually feel the great love and beauty within nature, and you may naturally feel grateful for all this love and beauty.
So breathe-in all the love and beauty that is around you, and breathe-out your gratefulness for all that is given. Breathe out gratefulness, joy, peace, and the love within your own heart.
Love is the sacred water of Spirit, and we become one with this when we allow it to flow in and through us and flow out from us into the world. Then we are one, in the rhythmic waves of love, and we truly feel the unity of being. When we have the power of love within us, by allowing it to come into us, and allowing it to emerge from within, then the Great Spirit of Love can be shared with everyone and everything we meet. This unfolds the expansion of love in all of life, for as we recognize and receive love and as we share our love, the radiance of Great Spirit Love becomes evermore bright and colorful in its beauty.
The power of love is also the essential power of healing, because deep healing comes from feeling loved, in an expanding recognition of the inter-related unity of life and our feeling of being one with this unity. Deep healing comes from our release of separateness and the blocks we have built around us. Deep healing comes from accepting ourselves as perfect in the inner core of our natural being, and realizing we are as naturally beautiful as the flowers and trees, because in our essence we are one with Nature.
The first step to take is recognition of the force within you which seeks to love. This is a recognition of your good intent. This is not a love for possessions or a possessiveness of others, but is an unconditional love, a deep intention to give love and care for all life. This deep love or intention to love will become your greatest source of power in the world, and it will begin to direct your life with wisdom and guidance.
The next step is the decision to love and to express love and truth in life. Recognize the love inside you which is given by Spirit, and then make the firm decision to be this love and express it an all activities. This is the decision to make life sacred and give your love to the great circle of life. The power of decision makes you strong and your path clear, and it protects you from obstructing and distracting forces.
The next step is trust. Trust in the power of your love and in your good intention and firm decision. It is primarily a trust in yourself, that the power is in you and you have the abilities to express this love into the world. This trust and faith brings to you all that you need in the expression of love. All the forces of Nature and of the Spirit world come to aid you in this pathway of love.
The final fourth step is to allow the expression of this power. Allow your power of love and wisdom to expand into all activities and into things. With trust, you won’t fear this power or be embarrassed about it. You’ll acquire confidence in this power freely allow it out into the world and into your relations with others. Meditate on these four steps to power: Recognition, Decision, Trust, and Allowing.
The third energy is the energy and power of consciousness and mind, or the power of awakening wisdom. This is the power of true seeing, the power of true knowing and understanding. We each have the inherent power of seeing into the truth of life and those around us, as well as the power to know and understand ourself. This power awakens as we open up our awareness, opening up our minds, by observing and listening to what is being revealed. We develop this power by seeing deeper into things, by observing more profoundly, and by entering into a quiet receptivity so that we can listen at a very deep level.
Our mind is most powerful and most wise when it is empowered and infused by the Universal Mind of Great Spirit. The spiritual seeker seeks to develop the power of consciousness and wisdom, which is to become evermore at one with the Wisdom Consciousness of Great Spirit. This is the power of true seeing, the power of true knowing and true understanding.
We each have the inherent power of seeing into the truth of life and those around us, as well as the power to know and understand ourself. This power awakens as we open up our awareness and open up our minds, by observing and listening to what is being revealed by the natural world around us and by the unfolding drama of life. We develop this power of intelligence by seeing deeper into things, by observing more profoundly, and by entering into a quiet receptivity so that we can listen at a very deep level to spiritual lessons and revelations.
This new clarity of the mind, or this power of wisdom vision, requires a conscious letting go of conditioned thoughts and beliefs, and the usual patterns of thinking, and becoming quietly open to clear vision and guidance from Great Spirit or from one of the greater spirits of Nature, though in essence it is an opening to vision and self-knowing as emerging from within. Here, from within, we begin to know our true self and our deeper passion in life. We begin to realize our deeper intentions and desires, and our spiritual direction becomes clearer in our mind.
The power of consciousness and knowing is also developed by meditation, which is an opening of the mind to more than is usually apparent, and this requires a letting go of the usual chatter in the mind and our usual worries and self-concerns. It requires a relaxed peacefulness in the mind and a receptive state of just listening or just observing. In order to develop wisdom one must first develop the ability to quiet and relax the usual mental chatter, and be able to meditate in the silence without distraction. Only then can you hear the wisdom and guidance coming from your inner spiritual soul and from the Higher Spirit World. And only then can you see into the revelations coming from Nature around you.
Inward meditation gives us self understanding and vision. Inward meditation is a kind of retreat from the outer world, where one closes the eyes and just listens inside for the emerging spirit within. This is a receptivity from within. And by taking some time to be in this meditation, you will learn how to quiet the mind and become aware of your true nature emerging from within. In this meditation you will soon receive new vision and understanding of your self and your soul direction. Your inner soul, which is your deeper natural self, will gradually be revealed and unfold, and you will receive vision and direction in life.
Also important is an outer connection and communication with Nature, which also adds to our own beingness and self-understanding. Inward and outer meditations are both aspects of the Vision Quest; which brings us a greater clarity of outward seeing and understanding of Nature, and also a greater clarity of our own powers, potentials, and our wisdom within.
The fourth energy of the human spirit corresponds to the fourth Quality of Great Spirit, which is the spiritual manifestation of beauty and harmony. This fourth energy is also a kind of synthesis of the other three energies. In other words, this fourth energy emerges from the synthesis of our vital dynamic power, our love energy, and our wisdom consciousness. We can think of this synthesis as the energy of spiritual artistic creation.
At your own very essence of inner being is this energy of creativity and expressive vision. You might think of this as your deeper expressive purpose in life, or as an accumulation of many expressive and artistic potentials. These inner potentials are seeds of spiritual and creative expression. They are potentials for being of service in the world, of giving particular gifts to the Circle of Life, and expressing various qualities of beauty, harmony and goodness in the world.
These are the various powers of your inner soul, which seek to reveal and express themselves. You feel these powers as deeper creative inspirations, and you may see them in the visionary imagination. These soul potentials are creative or spiritual urges coming from deep within you. And this is what we mean by the soul giving direction to life. It is the inner urge to do something, or to be something, which expresses a particular form of beauty, love, healing, or truth. It is your unique way of being spiritually effective and creative in the world.
Our creative power is our power to bring forth our spiritual creative potentials. These are the creative potentials of our inner soul, just as seeds are latent potentials with the ground of earth. We can understand this as the power of our creative spiritual will to express the inner potentials of the Great Spirit. This is that power within you which seeks to manifest spiritual qualities and artistic visions.
So this could also be called our artistic power, though remember that we are all potentially artists and creative people, in our own unique ways. Your unique artistry is in whatever way you feel inspired to express or manifest the truth, the love, the harmony or the beauty of Great Spirit. This might be expressed through sacred crafts, healing, teaching, politics, science, farming, or whatever helps to serve the Good Life.
We also have a power of intention, or power of will, which would be a fifth energy of being. Intention and will are necessary in any capacity of personal power. Without strong intention and will, there is no strong effective power in any of its aspects (physically, emotionally, mentally, nor artistic-creatively). Yet understand that the power of will also includes our potential abilities to be sensitive and receptive; so the power of will is not just self-assertive.
If your intention is to love and build harmony and beauty, then this is the power which will create a pathway for walking along the Good Road and being able to express the goodness of your soul. Our self-integrity of love, truth and good intention can be strengthened, and the stronger it is, the greater is our spiritual expression and expansiveness in the world.
Consider the power of your own inner knowing of truth and the integrity of your own sincere intention to promote harmony and goodness in the world. If your sincere intention is to love and to build harmony and beauty, then this intention creates a spiritual pathway for the Good Earth Walk. Thus, the self-integrity and sincerity of this Good Intention is a special power which will open up pathways for you to manifest goodness and beauty in the world.
The integrity and sincerity of your intention becomes the power behind your own personal prayer. Thus, we need to have a clearer understanding and recognition of our own self-truth. Be honest with yourself and become more conscious of your deeper intentions and motives. This is self-knowledge. This is recognizing the creative and expressive intention of your inner soul, which wants to express certain spiritual potentials deep within itself.
So, discover and recognize these inner urges of the soul, those deeper intentions within yourself. There is a great strength and power in knowing yourself and in knowing your deeper intention or what you truly wish to express in the world. The more clear and stronger this knowing is, the greater is your power of self-integrity. And this self-integrity of intention produces a causal pathway for manifesting that intention in life. The more you are clear in your inner intention, the more help you will receive from the Spirit World and the Spirit Helpers.
Our creative will is the power of our individual soul. This will of the soul has three aspects: the will to know the truth, the will to love and harmonize with all life, and the will to creatively express truth, harmony and beauty. Meditate on these three aspects of the soul, and discover them within yourself. These are the three essential fires of the soul, which lead to greater truth, goodness and beauty in life.
Our innermost will is from our spiritual soul; experienced as both an inner inspiration and a will to artistically create, though the meaning of artistic here could be inclusive of almost any interest or vocation. So it might also be understood that our soul is our deepest spiritual will and inspiration, given by Spirit.
Our personal will is given by the Will of Great Spirit, and when the mind and emotions are pure of false conditioning and self-egotism, this inner will can be purely reflective of the greater spiritual Will. The great Key to spiritual realization, which is the realization of being the Great Spirit in manifestation, or of being the Truth Itself, is in the purification and sacrifice of the false ego, so that what remains is the very essence of Spirit.
We must first let go of all self-centered thinking and all self-centered attachments, then our true inner soul can naturally come forth. Our inner soul is naturally loving, naturally wise, and naturally creative, and in its purity it is reflective of the Great Spirit.
The fire of our deeper-will within, the fire of our soul, will guide and direct the whole of our life, and it will harmonize and balance the other needs of the Medicine Wheel. This fire, or will of the soul, is not so easily found, because our usual experience of the self is either in head thinking or emotional reactions.
Rarely do people live from the heart, and so rarely do people experience the soul. An emotionally polarized person will identify themselves with their emotional habits or reactions. While a mentally polarized person will identify with their self-beliefs and ideas. Yet neither of these is the soul, and although there is nothing wrong with emotions or beliefs, the attention must be re-directed out of the head thinking and out of the gut reactions, in order to find the soul within the heart.
The fire of the soul is not a reactionary emotion, like anger or jealousy It is a fire which cares and seeks the good. The water of the soul is not a gushy sentimentality. It is peaceful acceptance and appreciation for what is given. The air of the soul is not an air of snobbery nor self-righteousness nor being a know-it-all. It is simply a direct knowing of life’s unity and interrelatedness and the realization that all people must still learn and grow within the unity. The manifesting energy of the soul is not a pushy manipulation of things nor people, and it is not a continuous fighting with life to make it just what you want. It is working in cooperation with the existing energies and forces of life, and singing one’s unique heart-song in complement with the music of Nature.
Our soul may manifest a great strength in standing up for truth, for unity, and defending Nature from the domination and aggressiveness of others. But the soul also makes friends and builds cooperation and harmony. The spiritual warrior builds unity, cooperation and harmony, and yet also has the courage to defend the rights of the nature world, and speak the truth in the face of lies or deception. We should not close our eyes and hearts to the troubles in the world and to the destructiveness made by the culture of greed, and we cannot allow the bullies of the world to ruin the potential beauty of our earthly paradise.
So, we need the power of the soul, to give us inner strength, inner certainty, and the wisdom of compassion. This knowing our own inner strength, our own love, our own truth and direction, is our self-integrity. This is our power, our inner personal power. It is power which comes from the greater power of Spirit. Yet once we know this Power of Spirit, this love-wisdom and strength inside us, then we can say it is our own. Once known and completely accepted, this Power, which comes from Great Spirit, becomes our own personal power.
Our soul, along with our sense of truth and spiritual direction, is found within our inner heart. Each person has their own beat or rhythm, which is the right rhythm for that person. So each person’s unique rhythm in life is respected, just as each person is a unique song of the Great Spirit. When the person is at peace in his or herself, their heartbeat is in natural rhythm with the rhythmic heartbeat of Mother Earth. And as we live in this peace, our self-expression stays in harmony and in rhythm with that of Mother Earth.
The unique soul of each person is thus within the inner space of the heart, as the unique rhythm or song directing Great Spirit into personal expression. The soul is essentially our own individual experience of Spirit and the qualities of Spirit, and it is thought to be a special gift of the Great Spirit or a actual piece of the Great Spirit Itself. Essentially we are all of One Spirit, which is why we call this the Great Spirit, and just as all color comes out of one great sunlight, our individual souls are unique combinations of the rainbow colors of pure light, and from this unique color combination of the soul comes our unique talents and gifts, which are unique expressions of the one creative Spirit.
So, within the soul are our potential talents, strengths and qualities, and our creative will to express these. Of course, many of these potentials are similar in other people as well, and how these manifest will depend on one’s exercise of them, but we believe that each soul is a unique combination of abilities and Qualities, and each soul has its own particular direction and purpose. Most people never fulfill their unique soul abilities and purpose, because the personality never comes in contact with the soul, and if not known then it can’t be expressed. So we must find our soul, which is the initial aim of the eastern step along the Medicine Wheel. To find the soul, one’s attention needs to come into the heart space and remain there undistracted and receptive.
You won’t find your true soul in your head, nor in your gut. We have said that the soul is the fire of creative spiritual will, but we should distinguish this spiritual will from ordinary willfulness as we might find in pushy, over-assertive, and dominating people. This pushy or dominating kind of will does not come from the heart. It comes from greedy stomach trying to get more and more, and thinking that one has to push and shove and control others in order to fulfill one’s needs and wishes. That push and shove kind of will shall eventually back fire on itself. It is a reactionary kind of will, usually based on the false emotions of fear or greed. And it is a kind of will which is supported by a cultural belief system that values greed and domination.
But the soul cannot be reached and known, unless the greedy and pushy kind of will is sacrificed and the thinking which values domination is given up. The true will of the soul is cooperative and compassionate, because the soul knows its relatedness to all life, and so would not seek to dominate or assert itself over others. The soul asserts love and not hate, cooperation and not greed, equality and not dominance.
This is the will which comes from the heart space. It is the energy of love expressing itself. It is the will to express the spiritual Truth, and that Truth is the knowledge of unity and the oneness of Spirit. It is the truth that all life is meant to live in cooperation and harmony. The soul is Truth, is Love, and is the Will to creatively express this Truth and Love.
The soul has been spoken of as the fire of spiritual will in the heart, yet the fire of will is actually one of the three aspects of the soul. Another aspect is called the Water of Peace and Love, and the other aspect is called the Air of Truth. The soul can be felt as a deep peace within and a deep love for all life, much like a calm lake or an ocean of love. This peace and love is a feeling of unity with the Great Spirit and with all life, and compassion is its natural outcome.
The soul is also an inner knowing. It is the truth within, which is like an air of knowing or certainty, and once this inner knowing has been found, there is no power which can take this away, unless we betray our soul and give up our own self-integrity for false possessions and greed. If you haven’t found your own certainty of truth, which is not something one can tell you but is something you must directly experience, then you must pray for this knowing and search inside for it. It may take some time and patience, but the treasure of self-knowledge and self-integrity is well worth the effort.
Thus, the soul actually has the elements of water and air, as well as fire, and so connects with emotion and mind. The forth element of earth is the necessary embodiment of soul, which is our sacred body and also the sacred things and rituals we create which carry our soul within them.
The soul begins as a spiritual aspiration to know one’s truth and purpose in life, and the will to be in harmony and unity. It is this fire of the soul which begins a transformation of the mind, emotions and body. Soon, the water element of the soul is felt as a deep peace and faith, and love begins to overflow from within. Then, the air element of the soul begins to clear the mind and reveal itself as truth and certainty of understanding, and wisdom becomes a direct experience. Then, the soul begins to embody into the earth element, in what one does and in what one makes. The soul embodies itself as manifested beauty and harmony. Thus, the soul light of spiritual will, love and wisdom eventually illuminates the whole mind, the emotions and manifestation, and thus there is unity and harmony within the person and in their creative pursuits, which is a unity unfolded by the soul of Great Spirit.