Things are dark in our world right now. And each of us must find our way through this plague of darkness. As I assemble this New Moon newsletter even the weather is threatening and stormy in our rural section of Rhode Island. Hunkered down, with our routines on hold, we wait for the first wave of this pandemic to pass. How long will it last? Will we live to see the end of it? Will it be our undoing or our catalyst for transformational change?
Comfort can come when you least expect it. Last week this was proven anew when a letter arrived from an old friend. What he wrote about my memoir inspires me to keep writing. Plus knowing that my story inspired this widowed artist to start painting again.
“I picked up ‘The Importance of Paris’ the day before your birthday and finished the day after. I was completely under your spell—far too many ‘shocks of recognition’ to recount now. While reading your book I became fearful for your safety. So much ‘truth telling.’ Mostly I am proud of your extreme candor and could feel weight lifting from you throughout.
I admit being overwhelmed by your worldly contacts, your professional life, your courage, your womanly power—am humbled to call you my friend…your sublime summation signaled the breakthrough you/we the readers sought—a profound realization of self–empowerment and restoration with a refreshed instinctive energy, a strengthened ego and a revitalized superego’s intuitive balance.
YOU WOMEN AMAZE ME! Thank you, all my love, T. R.”
[His addendum refers to the coronavirus.]
“How will survivors manage to overcome loss? What are the consequences for those growing up without the loved ones taken by this plague? The darkness, the grief…will the world evolve into a unified global community or return to conflict?
Reflecting upon your journey from alienation, a sense-of-place destroyed by wars and betrayals, and the struggle you took to surmount its effects, achieving hard-won restoration, to liberate your soul…not everyone will have your strength…perhaps we can create a thing/idea to satisfy what others need…an alchemy to fuse opposites…provide rituals…bring life out of death through art.” — Thomas Russell
Thankfully, I have already created that thing/idea he suggests, a form of ritual (and) alchemy to fuse opposites. I call it the Wisdom Wheel and will tell him about it. For the last two decades the Wheel has been my life’s ballast. Without its steadying influence, even the memoir would have languished unfinished. In my reply to my friend, I briefly explain how the Wheel works.
We start to use it by realigning ourselves with the Great Flow of Nature. Sitting down on the ground, we lay out the stones on New and Full Moons, reminding ourselves to go with Nature, instead of against it. Our energies ebb and flow just like the Earth’s tidal waters, moved by moon’s reliable gravity. Syncing up with these lunar cycles regularly keeps me on track, literally, so I can move forward. The reassuring Sun, rising and setting, with its encircling moon, waxing and waning, I am in awe of Nature’s wisdom. The Wheel and its Laws reveal how to align with it.
When a catastrophic war forced me to find my way in my twenties, I learned to depend upon the steady, timeless truths, not the fragile, fickle humans. My former days of desperation stand me in good stead now. Survival taught me to search for the solace that can be relied upon. With every New and Full Moon I reset my sights and my psyche.
In the coming editions, I’ll be sharing more about the Wisdom Wheel Way book we’re working on so others can use it to find their way.