It was another beautiful weekend here with time immersed in nature hiking. This weekend I hiked 12 miles total with 8 of those miles being today. I also got some work done, had some fun outings, visited the Natural Products Expo West, and got errands accomplished for the week as well. It's amazing how productive I am and more fulfilled because of the efforts I've made to make sure I'm balancing my life and intentfully giving myself the grounding and recharging time with Mother Nature.
Right now I'm feeling revitalized after the day's enlivening hike and activities, a nice refreshing shower, and a little treat of vegan raw chocolate, as I sit here to share this post. ;) As I was just sharing with a friend, I always believe in quality not quantity and that even just a few intentful minutes or a 1/2 hour spent in nature or doing something totally self nurturing makes a difference and is invaluable.
Today was a clear day at the Pacific Ridge Trailhead, the fields and hills were lush and green, the skies blue, the flowers starting to bloom, the sun warm, and the breeze nice and cool on my sun-kissed skin. The hike took us on a climb of about 900 feet and at the top there is a beautiful camp site look out with benches overlooking the vista. On days like today, you can clearly see Catalina across the Pacific and while sitting there taking the view in, I also clearly heard a sea lion at the coast. Amazing!
But the highlight of today was being enchanted by a little Snake Medicine. Miss Rattlesnake decided to cross my path on the incline up the hill. This is actually the first time I've seen a rattlesnake in nature, which I found to be auspicious given we are in the Year of the Snake. I've seen a few snakes on some of my travels and while living in Sedona, but never here in California or on any of my hikes. So this truly was a magickal treat!
I was so excited and without fear, as I love snakes. Interestingly, just a minute before seeing her, I had seen a twisted branch in the path that looked like a coiled rattlesnake in ita pre-striking mode and had thought, wow that looks just like a snake from afar, until I came upon it and saw it for what it was. Then directly after, I see a long patterned curvy branch ahead and said, gee that looks like a snake again, but this time it actually was. Seems the first sighting I had conscious observed in awareness, was a little message of what was up ahead and speaks to how we can learn to read signs.
She (the rattlesnake) was lovely (although my not so good photos don't reveal her beauty) and seemed to be enjoying the beautiful day and sunshine just as us and the other people hiking today. On a journey of her own, she was intent on peacefully crossing the path into the brush, but had stopped long enough to allow our energetic encounter. Right at the end, just as she had fully crossed the path and was going over a hump to descend the hill, she gave a little rattle of her tail, which felt to be a mutual acknowledgment and I chimed back with a resounding, "thank you, it was a pleasure to connect with you too."
Interestingly, just after reaching her, three young women had approached from the other side of the path and had stopped in fear and were backing up and ready to turn around the other way saying there's no way they're going that way. But miss Tania had slowly and respectfully gotten closer, about 6 to 10 feet away at different intervals of traversing the path, to connect with her some more.
I found it an interesting experience of how people approach life that was perfectly being demonstrated at opposite sides of the snake.
The three girls were on her right, which would be linked with the left brain and more analytical and mental side, and I was on her left, which is linked with the right brain and more intuitive, feeling and creative side. The way we each either reacted, or responded, was exactly corresponding to where we were standing, both symbolically and literally. This made me ponder how we have a choice to approach life with fear or with love and when we learn to embrace things that seem scary as a shadow aspect of our own nature, we instantly perform transmutational alchemy that will shift our entire experience into wholeness.
Now that doesn't mean that we shouldn't take precautions and act wisely, nor does it negate that people have legitimate fears that could use some nurtured healing. However, if we find ourselves up against similar fear-induced situations that hold us back from the very things we want or that would support our growth to achieve what we want, then perhaps there is something worth taking a look at in our process that could make a difference.
I found that the powerful snake medicine shared with me today was another beautiful gift that reminded me of the sweet man on the Chinese New Year who happened to see my snake tattoo and then came over to me to give me a red envelope of two gold $1 coins for an abundant year.
As shared in that post:
Snakes symbolize transmutation, cycles, rebirth, resurrection, patience, wisdom, fertility, creation energy, eternity, connection to the shadow worlds, secret knowledge, pointed focus, assertive power, primoridal life force, search for balance, eternity, cunning, intuition, awareness, initiation, healing, intellect, protection, solemnity, rejuvenation, transformation, the hidden or occult, knowledge, male/female duality, and kundalinin energy.
Snake totem is the power of creation and embodies immortality and psychic energy. The snake has fire energy which translate emotionally as: charisma, intellect, power and the intellect, spiritually as: connection with Spirit, wisdom, wholeness and understanding, and physically as: vitality and passion.
2013 is the Year of the Black Water Snake. Changeability, mobility, and dynamism are the Water characteristics that the Black Snake will embody. The reigning color is black, which is the color of deep waters, space, and abyss and hence will carry the creation, visionary, and imagination energies (this reminded me of my recent post Diving Deep into the Inspirational Abyss ;) ) as well as the energy of the emotions, unconscious, spiritual focus in life, dedication to quiet introspection, interest in understanding the underlying meanings and mechanics of life, flowing, and pooling your resources together in readiness and strength so you are ready to make a move forward when opportunities present themselves.
This heralds a year of unexpected changes abound and the need for cautious, careful planning, while remaining as flexible and versatile as you can (like the Snake) in order to flow with the changes and strike at opportune and aligned moments. If you are able to ride the transformative waves by embracing the energies present, you can aid a return to balance and harmony, which this collective #6 year is about, rather than get caught in the imbalances and inconstancy that will be brought in with the Snake year – all to help you evolve and learn to “be” the energy of Water, which shifts in chameleon-like ways.
In summary, some other things the energy of the year will bring includes a time for deep transformation and healing, major out-of-the-blue changes, a time for reflection, going within, and withdrawing rather than being involved in tons of social situations, in order to focus on steady, methodical progress, details and serious responsiblity.
This will also be a time for “shedding” the very deep-rooted old in order to release and begin anew, realizing that hidden aspects may surface for your gentle integration. Having all of your senses on conscious-awareness-high-volume will aid you in not being taken by surprise, as well as assist in understanding the perfection of the unfolding. This is a great year for physical healing of the body as well as moving into a more spiritual way of life, if you haven’t already. Or, you will start integrating more of this into your life in deeper ways – having it become your way of being, rather than a novelty or side focus.
Seems like things continue to kick off with some potent energy this year! I'm really enjoying the journey of 2013 so far and the amazing things that are unfolding.