Thursday, December 24, 2015

the legend of mistletoe

"Mystical power of mistletoe and the tradition of kissing under the mistletoe owe itself to the legend of Goddess Frigga and her son Balder. Frigga was the Goddess of Love and her son, Balder, was the God of the Summer Sun. Once, Balder dreamt of his death. He was worried and told his mother about the strange dream. Frigga was worried not only for the life of her son but also for the life on Earth because she knew that without Balder, all life on Earth would come to an end. Thus, she did her utmost to avoid such a mishap and went everywhere and to every being in air, water, fire and earth to extract a promise that they would never harm her son. She was promised safety of her son by every animal and plant under and above the Earth. However, Loki, the God of Evil, who was the enemy of Balder and always had evil designs in his mind, was aware that there was one plant that Frigga had overlooked. It grew on apple and oak trees and was known as Mistletoe. Thus, Loki made an arrow and placed Mistletoe at its tip. He then beguiled the blind brother of Balder known as Hoder, the God of Winter, and made him shoot this arrow at Balder. Balder immediately was poisoned and died. Everybody was worried as the Earth turned cold and life became dreary. Every creature tried to bring Balder back to life for three days but it was finally Frigga who managed to revive her son with the help of Mistletoe. Her tears on the plant became pearly white berries and she blessed the plant anyone who stands under the mistletoe plant would never be harmed and would be entitled to a kiss as a token of love."   

Christmas coincides with the Winter solstice which was honored in many ancient cultures. In ancient Rome this day was celebrated as the Dies Natalis Invicti Solis, the birth of the Sun god. Many rituals that are associated with Christmas today derive their origins from Pagan worship and celebrations. 

The Christmas tree is one such example. The tree represents Axis Mundi that connects heaven and earth. It is a symbol common to all cultures of the northern Europe that celebrated the winter solstice. It was a custom to bring evergreen trees into the homes as a reminder that the winter will be over soon and the crops would grow again. Evergreen boughs were often carried as symbols of good luck and were often present at weddings where they represented fertility. The Druids used the tree as a religious symbol, holding their sacred ceremonies while surrounding and worshiping huge trees.

Wishing everyone  a healthy and peaceful Christmas. 
May your hearts be filled with joy!

Dominique Allmon

Thursday, November 26, 2015

the importance of being grateful

On Thanksgiving Day, many American families celebrate the tradition of sitting around the dinner table and taking a few minutes to reflect on and share with others what they are grateful for.

It doesn’t matter that we live in difficult times. It doesn’t matter that we may feel insecure, depressed, disappointed or even angry. Thanksgiving is a perfect time to reflect on the good things in our lives and to celebrate abundance. There is always a silver lining, no matter what. We may not always see it, but a shift in our perception of reality will help us change the way we experience everything that is coming our way. At first it may be difficult to understand that the glass is never empty. It may come in a wrong size at times, but it is always full. There is always something to fill our hearts with joy, something to fill our minds with wonder, something to be grateful for. If we remember this, we will easily find the strength to continue no matter how difficult our circumstances may appear.

A small exercise in gratefulness can help us shift attention and move the center of gravity. Instead of focusing on all the things that are wrong or missing in our lives, we should express gratitude for all the things that are good and praiseworthy. This change in attitude helps us elevate our vibration. We instantly feel better about ourselves and our circumstances. As our mood changes gradually, we tend to attract positive response from people around us. Everything seems to be less dreary and we have the strength to face our challenges without fear. We are able to understand that even the most difficult times do not last forever. We know that we are in transition and that the outcome depends on the direction we are wiling to take. After all, we are the final masters of our fate.

Do not allow negative emotions to take over. Do not tune in with others who spend their days whining and complaining. Instead, try to motivate those around you to count their blessings and to exercise gratitude on daily bases. At first, they may object that there is very little they can be grateful for, but with passing time they will realize that it is really up to them to experience joy and create abundance. It is like a magic touch because with the right frame of mind ordinary things will suddenly take on another meaning.

Keep in mind that giving thanks is a conscious decision we need to make daily. Begin your day with blessings and end it with a reflection on the good things in your life.

By Dominique Allmon

Wishing everyone a every happy and thoughtful Thanksgiving!


Saturday, November 14, 2015

ginko biloba

In my garden’s care and favor
From the East this tree’s leaf shows
Secret sense for us to savor
And uplifts the one who knows.

Is it but one being single
Which as same itself divides?
Are there two which choose to mingle
So that each as one now hides?

As the answer to such question
I have found a sense that’s true:
Is it not my songs’ suggestion
That I’m one and also two?

Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, 1815

Translated by John Whaley