Spiritual Courage through Rites of Passage
I love ritual, drawing attention to the deeper connections we all have with one another and with Mystery. For as far back as I can recall I have honored the passing of life into death, the passing of despair into hope (or the other way around), the passing of youth to maturity...with poems and songs, candles and stones, drapery, flowers, laughter, tears and woven words.
I have always felt that the creation of sacred space for the honoring of life's milestones, the weddings, baby blessings, celebrations of life, etc. is one of deepest honors and blessings. It helps those who are bereft connect with the courage needed to find their way to renewed hope. It helps those who are celebrating connect with the courage to claim that joy with gratitude and make of it a memory that will see them through more challenging times.
Ritual frames life's highs and lows allowing us to integrate them. At best it helps us to celebrate that which can be celebrated, and, when that is not the case, to at least appreciate the learning that is possible when we move through life with intention - keeping watch for every new opportunity life offers so that we can bring our full selves to this human experience.
My love of ritual and rite of passage was handed on to me by my grandmother and my mother, although neither considered what they did to be reflective of any religious or spiritual sensibilities. My grandmother relished the opportunities presented by milestones of all sorts (birthdays, retirements, hip replacements, etc.) to host lavish lunches, at which the honoree would be feted with an original poem, recited with great flare. Inspired by her, I have been known to spontaneous recitation of Dr. Seussian-type rhymes in celebration of just about anything. And, to make a special event of the most ordinary gatherings and meals.
My mother, always challenged to structure family life around my father's erratic work schedules, had her own flair for creative ritual. Although meals were simple the table was always carefully set when we were all together - with attention paid to color schemes and lighting, background music, table manners, and to nourishing one another with conversation as we ate. We were always encouraged to reflect with gratitude upon our good fortune, savoring the time we could spend together. And while I had my moments of wishing we could eat in front of the TV like all my friends did, I am truly grateful that wasn't the case.
Please contact me at TendingSpirit@gmail.com if you'd like to set up a time to talk through your ideas and my focus in creating a transformative spiritual ritual.