Three Wise Women
(By T. Smirnova)
Making a Place for Oracles
in Everyday Life
Oracles come to us abundantly when we notice how alive the world really is. With a little practice, we can educate our senses to see, hear, and feel more fully the communications of an ensouled universe. The task is not hard. At the edge of awareness, we already know how it feels to be addressed by the visibles and invisibles who share existence with us. Childhood recollections may also lead us back to the enchanted eyes and ears we once possessed.
In my own life, I have found that practicing simple exercises in awareness greatly increases my oracular sensitivity. The procedures are easy to carry out and can be completed in less than 10 minutes each. I recommend selecting one or two exercises a day and trying them for two weeks. Before long, you are likely to notice delightful changes in your general perception. Because oracular knowing is native to the psyche, it needs only the slightest encouragement to flourish again.
Greeting the Living World
Upon awakening, greet everything you see or hear for a period of one full minute. Say aloud or to yourself, "Hello, sun coming through my window. I greet you, bird-voice outside. Good morning, picture on the wall." Allow objects and sounds to come into your awareness in their own way, in any order. Each morning, you will greet some things and ignore others. Do this exercise for seven days. If you forget a day, pick up the practice again the next morning. After a week, switch to saying goodnight to the world around you for one full minute each evening. Before long, a strange thing will happen. The light coming in the window will take on a friendlier, more personal presence. The picture on your wall will seem to be looking back at you. Animals will gaze into your eyes with new awareness. Now you have entered an anima mundi (ensouled world) state of mind.
Letting Clouds Uncloud Your Vision
This exercise builds upon a pastime we all enjoyed in childhood: looking up into the clouds. Select a day when clouds are abundant overhead. Lie on the ground or recline in a chair so that you can gaze comfortably at the sky without straining your neck. Adopt an attitude of quiet watching. Dissolve your focus and soften your eyes, just drifting with the clouds. Soon a particular area of the sky may attract your attention. Staying somewhat unfocused, watch what the clouds will do. Faces, animals, angels, and scenes may take shape. Your consciousness will begin to become as soft and swirling as the clouds themselves. When you feel like ending the session (I suggest not going beyond 20 minutes), thank the clouds for being with you that day. Gazing at clouds opens a space of silent contemplation in our rushed, over stimulated lives. We gain deeper appreciation of the mysterious ways that matter and spirit constantly meld into each other, creating ever-new realities. Like our cloud-pictures, oracular messages arise from that realm between the material and the nonmaterial, between the known and the unknown.
Touching the Soul of an Animal Being
For this practice, go to a setting where you can gaze at an animal for ten minutes without being interrupted. For example, you may arrange to be alone with a companion animal at home, or you can go to a zoo, horse stable, or pet store. Your goal is to experience the animal as a fully conscious and aware being. You will invite your own body to feel its kinship with the animal's body, thereby creating a direct link between the two of you. For this example, I will assume that the animal is a mammal and is female. Look into her eyes and notice how alive and liquid they are. Become aware of her nose and the moist breath moving in and out. Imagine how warm her body would feel if you touched her. Imagine stroking your hand along her head, neck, back, legs, and the underside of her belly. (Do not actually touch the animal, however.) Tell her how beautiful you think she is. Describe this beauty to her, using whatever words come naturally for you. The idea is to appreciate the animal fully and communicate your experience back to her. Now switch your perspective and try to imagine how it would feel to be inside this creature. What if you walked as she does? If you looked through her eyes, what would you see? Think what it would be like to watch a human being staring at you! Now shift your perspective one more time and become yourself again. Look at the animal and imagine that a human soul dwells behind those eyes. Perhaps (as in the fairy tales of old) a prince or princess inhabits that body. Suddenly you may feel that you are gazing not into the eyes of an animal, but of someone similar to yourself. Perhaps you feel a slight shiver. The space around you may feel "thick" or charged with electricity. This is your sign that you have made contact with something important. At the end of the session, say to the animal, "I honor you and I thank you. "
Practicing exercises like these serve to soften rigid boundaries between our private, separate, me-consciousness and the world all around us. We can sense more keenly the invisible webs that connect all existence. Oracular communications stream in, offering their elegant guidance. Then we appreciate what Job meant when he said, "Speak to the earth, and it shall answer thee."
Based on the book, WHEN ORACLES SPEAK
by Dianne Skafte, Ph.D.
Quest Books, October 2000
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