Monday, 17 April 2017

The unfolding rose and the cross


"Be my mind open to the Higher,

Be my heart a centre of the Light,

Be my body a Temple of the Rose Cross."

Golden Dawn, V3 Book6

In living we can become dragged down by the trials and tribulations of life.  These mundane weights close us down to the connection to the spiritual life, the energy that lifts us can be depleted and we get stuck in the grey mud of existence.  This is one of the reasons why in every book shop you find vast amounts written on self help.  A multi million pound industry with a myriad of steps to lift your out of the everyday and make things easier. Just read this book, follow that course and you will be happy.

In truth nothing comes that easy, 3 steps to a wonderful life will make you feel better whilst you read it, but once that book is put down the lift it brings slowly subsides, leaving us to go hunt the next quick lift fix.  To raise ourselves out of the grey matter of everyday life, to be fed by the eternal spiritual well-spring of energy and to cope with the stresses of a modern life takes time and effort, as does any form of exercise.  A daily approach to our spirituality will bring gifts and strengths that will bring us into a more harmonius way of being. Although any true development takes dedication, the way does not have to be compicated, in fact the one thing I have learnt as a performer is that the simpler the mechanics the more of your self and energy you can put into the presentation. Relate this to our spiritual practice and the simpler the practice the more benefit we can get from living it.

The above quote for me captures the essence of that daily practice.  If we see the Rose at the centre of the cross as awareness and wisdom.  If we tend to the Rose, feed it, nurture it and protect it then when the light of the sun touches it's closed bud the beautiful, scented rose will blossom.  How do we tend to that blossom within?

"Be my mind open to the Higher,"  - the Most Ancient of Days can be found in silence, we do not need to intellectually try to quantify and understand the divine/ great mystery, we just need to take time each day to allow that divine spark within us to radiate, to be with our innate divine self.  Meditation as a daily practice is a great way to do this, not to mention the physical, mental and emotional benefits that we can gain from its practice. It is not difficult to introduce meditation into daily life, we all have moments when the task at hand is menial and takes little thought. Washing the dishes as an example, this is a perfect time to allow our minds to think upon the nature of the divine, to take an inspirational thought and explore its meaning, or to just relax, and focus on our breath, the simplest technique of all.  Lunch breaks, queing or in the bath all things that we find ourselves doing, all moments we can utulise to forget the everyday world and enter into silence and contemplation.

Even better if we can create an actual time in the day when we stop everything and practice simple meditation techniques, the following of breath, the gazing upon a candle the repetition of a word that has spiritual resonance for us. It is to easy to say I do not have time, but if you were to look at life and realise how many things we fill our live's with that are uneccessary you soon realise that to do something for yourself and your well-being is not so difficult and whats more, you deserve it. Just by creating a single moment in the day to allow the sacred to touch your sould will bring benefits both to your inner and outer life.

"Be my heart a centre for the light," - the light is love, love of life, love of existence, of our fellow human beings. Love is that which moves the stars through the heavens, and begins and ends worlds.  It is the universal relationship, of nurture and support, life, death and rebirth.  We can bring this light into our beings with simple meditations and rituals, but sometimes the mistake is to stop there, we do not bring that universal light into ourselves to benefit us, we do it to benefit the whole of existence.  We honour the divine by radiating that light out to others.  Service to life is the sharing of the light, just simple gestures of support and help in our local communities means that the light we recieve is shared, we become the light bearer.  A single candle will illuniate a corner of a room, a thousand candles will illuniate the largest of temples.  Be a light, gestures do not have to be massive humanitarian actions, just smiling at people, acknowledging others, complimenting others when they do a good job, and even when they do not supporting them when they feel they have not.  To be a light bearer is to empower and nurture your fellow being to help others grow and become more than they ever believed they could.  Do not judge but accept, be brave and know within yourself that in helping another's rose to bloom you are adding more nourishment to your own inner beauty and grace.

"Be my body a Temple of the Rose Cross." - The rose as stated earlier is symbolic of our own inner unfolding, our expanding awareness.  The cross is the foundation upon which the temple is built.  We do not need buildings of stone to be in the temple, if we have not nurtured the inner temple the four walls and roof are just bricks and morter. They will not make that connection to the divine for us if we are not open within ourselves.  The arms of the cross point to the four areas of our lives that we need to nurture, which if addressed properly will build the temple of the rose.  We need to take care of ourselves in the four areas of our experiencing, the physical (body), mental, emotional and spiritual.  Physically speaking gentle exercise, eating healthy, cleansing our bodies are simple, some would say obvious techniques but essential.  This does not mean we have to be saintly, a little of what we like is good for us, and great benefits can be recieved at all arms of the cross for occassionally indulging in a treat that we accept with gratitude. When we ply our bodies with treats everyday they loose their specialness and what do you congratulate yourself with once the greatest of gifts is everyday.

Mentally we need to take care of ourselves, stimulate the mind with new concepts, ideas and experiences, meditate to help calm the mind. Find people to be with who stimulate and challenge your thoughts, learn new things. Avoid intoxication, once in a while again a little of what you like is fine, but what we believe to be thinking clearly when we drink/ smoke etc on a regular basis actually is a clouded reality, numbed by the intoxcant. I have noticed over the years that even a drink take away vital energy and can befudle thinking.

Emotionally we need to keep ourselves in check, spend time with your emotions, learn to understand them, by doing so we can dispell fear.  Try to make sure the relationships your are in are healthy, avoid the so called psychic vamoire types, those who drain you and bring your mood down. Ask of the universe for balance and harmony within your heart.

Spiritually through meditation, prayer, ritual we develop those inner worlds, outwardly walks in beautiful countryside, sitting and looking over a beautiful view, allowing everyday thoughts to step aside also brings nourishment to the spiritual self. Listening to sacred music, joining others in prayer and meditation all aid in the nurturing of the soul.

Always keep in mind the adage of "Know Thyself" we are a reflection of the divine, made in the image of the Most Ancient of Days.  As it is written in the Charge of the Goddess by Doreen Valiente:

"And thou who thinkest to seek for me, know thy seeking and yearning shall avail thee not, unless thou know this mystery: that if that which thou seekest thou findest not within thee, thou wilt never find it without thee.
For behold, I have been with thee from the beginning; and I am that which is attained at the end of desire."

By nurturing ourselves on all levels, by creating time in the day for simple practices that will bring us peace and well-being we are tending to the sacred garden at the heart of the temple of the cross, if we work a little everyday slowly the Rose at the centre will unfold, and its beauty will unfold within you, within your life.



"If ye then be risen with Christ, seek those things which are above..... 2 Set your thoughts on things above, not on the things on the earth."  Colossians 3 1-2

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