“This lentil stew is really delish,” said Pia, rubbing her tummy. “I love that it has the kids’ vegetables in it and your own kale. Thanks for making it vegetarian, but I can’t eat another bite. What a treat to share it with us. And it’s so good to get caught up on the details of each others’ last few weeks.”
“Thanks. And don’t worry, I didn’t make any dessert.”
“What?! No more juicy bits about all the people we love to nurture?”
“I’ve been thinking,” Charley spoke up over their giggles, “about new things we could be doing to move things along magically in our community. Now that I’ve got my feet on the ground in the community organizing realm, I’m wondering how to mix a bit more in spirituality.”
“Bravo on the PSU coup, by the way. There were a lot of other communities vying for their adjunct program.”
“Don’t forget that consensus building is a spiritual practice.”
“And so is sustainability consciousness…”
“And so is gossip,” added Ursula. “It has a bad rap but I’ve always maintained that the news we exchange about each other and our talk about the others’ problems are ways of checking out our information as well as our gut feelings and energy hits. I really needed confirmation of you-know-who’s subtle icky energy a while back and I welcomed reassurance from others that I was in my own drama about that new massage therapist that pissed me off. Right now, I’ve been noticing Sylvia’s depression. Do you think it’s a long term problem we need to pay attention to or is it a passing thing?”
“Good example – in fact, I am concerned about her too. That no-good boyfriend of hers finally took off but she doesn’t seem to be able to get her feet back on the ground. I’ve tried reaching out but she’s angry at the world.”
“I wonder if….”
“Now wait, you both jumped right over my sincere conversational gambit,” complained Charley.
“Sorry,” said Pia. “We did, and you’re right that it’s time to up the ante again on the magical and intentional content of our activities.”
“Hey – before we’re off and running on all that, let’s get in the hot tub,” interjected Ursula. “You guys have time? That little rain shower seems to be over and there’s a full moon arisin.’ A good time to take stock of what we’ve accomplished and get ready to move forward.”
“That would be lovely. We haven’t done that together in a long time.”
“Just leave the dishes. We’ll get them later,” Charley and Ursula said to Raven as he started to clear.
“Guess you must be sure since you said it in unison. Is it ok if I leave my clothes out here?”
“Sure, I will too,” agreed Charley. “That leaves room for you female types in the bathroom.” The guys stripped down quickly and headed out to the tub through the south facing sliding door, Charley stopping to pee over the railing on the way out.
“I’ll need a hair tie,” said Pia as she and Ursula headed the other direction.
Soon they were all in the hot tub knees not quite touching. They’d only had to apologize to a few autumnal spider webs on the path between house and tub. The moon was indeed just peeking between the trees to the East, having risen behind the Mountain a while ago.
“A-a-a –rooo!! Yip! Yip! Yip!” they all howled, Pia and Ursula adding a vocal belly dance flourish at the end, while Charley yodeled. “Awk. Awk,” called Raven.
“Yip Yip Yip,” echoed a real coyote from across the hollow on the mountainside. They were all silent for a moment taking in the beauty and power of the night.
Charley broke the silence, “I keep getting that we have this opportunity to create the world we want to see. What do we still need to do to move things along? That’s my visionary Aquarian moon talking and being the Virgo sun that I am, I want to stay on task.” He looked at Pia with a twinkle.
“Even in the hot tub,” Ursula chuckled.
“What better place? You’re such a water creature, I know you do some of your best creating here!” said Pia.
“We did a good job of calling in help a few years ago. Look at all that’s been happening,” said Raven. “Damn birds landing everywhere!”
Pia laughed. “We’re enjoying having Arlo around again. Even though he’s living upriver, I love bumping into that sweet son of mine at the Post Office and Natural Foods Store. It was fun to see your Salal and his lovely sweetie at the coffee shop this morning. How long are they here for?”
“We don’t really know. He’s pretty closed mouth with us. But we had a nice supper with them last night. They’re staying down at Cali and Carlos’s. Thank goodness those guys are attracting interesting younguns’ with their farm. And surely the baby is part of the arrivals.”
“You lucky grandparents, you.”
“Salal is one bird who hasn’t landed back here yet, and I’m pretty resigned to the idea that he might not,” said Charley. “Whether or not Marina will is still an open question.”
“On the good days we’re resigned,” laughed Ursula. “And we’re still not sure if Jay is really here to stay. His relationship with Fern is looking solid but you never know. But I’m feeling much better about it all since our Demeter and Persephone ritual.”
“Ariel Lyons is back,” said Charley, taking the heat off the thought of his longing for all his four kids to be around.
“Really? Ariel was one of the early Illahee School kids but her parents divorced and moved away when she was seven,” Pia explained to Raven since he was a relative newcomer, having flown in himself only about ten years ago. Pia had been a single mom during the early Illahee days.
“She’s staying at Sitka House while one of their housemates is in the Amazon and she’s been hired by the Arts Center to develop their teens program – both theater and visual arts. I guess she has an actual degree of some sort.”
”That’s so cool. I wonder where her parents are.”
“I didn’t have the strength to ask about them and we had so much else to talk about. So how do we up the ante again?” Charley wasn’t going to let this one get away.
“We have manifested help for ourselves,” Pia responded. “And if the astrology stuff I follow is to be believed, and I do, then big changes are nigh upon us and we don’t have much calendar time. Now, magical time is another story, as Raven here would say.”
“The end times predicted by the Mayans so long ago seem to overlap with the notion of the shifting of the ages from the Piscean to the Aquarian. It’s the completion of a 28,000 year cycle. Some say even a 104,000 year cycle. I can hardly grok what that means in time or in practicalities, but it’s of Galactic proportions. And the stuff I’m reading now on the Internet is saying that we’re already well within the window of that cosmic astrological event.”
“We’re hearing that too,” said Ursula. “So many of us are making big changes – doing the deep work – that the New Age is coming to fruition faster than anyone – even the spirits from afar – thought we’d be capable of.”
“Hurray for our side,” said Charley. “Even though sometimes it feels like things are inching one step back for every two steps forward and that the bad guys are still in control.”
“The layoffs and closures just keep happening, plus there’s Global Climate Change….” Ursula’s voice trailed off. “Makes me feel guilty about this luxurious hot tub and all the electricity we are using.”
“I figure as long as we share it and use it for most of our bathing, that we’re doing ok. We’re all still learning to wean ourselves….”
“I wanna dance!” shouted Raven.
“Right now? I mean it is the Full Moon and all but personally, I’m not feeling that jazzed,” said Charley.
“I mean let’s add Ecstatic Dance to our Medicine Group offerings.”
“Yogic dance. Whatever. Pia and I have been using Gabriele Roth’s music most days for at least a little bit.”
“Do tell.” Ursula could feel her energy lift after the dip of the last few minutes.
“When I started doing yoga on my own beyond my usual two classes a week,” said Pia, “the movements kept turning into dance. Slow and stretchy but flowing and intuitive rather than the long held poses of the yoga of our teachers. I love that too. There’s nothing better after a long physical or mental pushing sort of day. But we’ve really been having fun with this extrapolation. When I heard Roth’s music and read up on her Five Rhythms I realized it was just what we needed to add more dimensions to the process. She’s been doing it for years. I can’t believe I never heard of her.”
“I think the young people have been dancing that way in the Barn,” said Ursula. “Sometimes even with live music. Maybe we could set up a regular time at the Community Center. What days would work for you?”
“That’s one of the things I love about you, Ursula,” said Raven. “You just hone right in there on the details to make it happen.”
“It’s her Capricorn moon. You’re so airy you need us administrative types around,” said Pia thinking of her forays into Shamanic Astrology. “I’ve got it too.”
“Don’t I know it,” rejoined Raven. “But I love you anyway. I’ll put together music for the dancing.”
“I’ll bring scarves and things so we can be like little girls…kids, I mean,” said Pia.
“It would definitely improve the playful element around here for us. I just know that’s an important piece of what the New Age is about,” said Raven.
“I agree,” said Charley. “And I predict it will spill over into the healing aspect of what we’re up to for ourselves, the land and the community.”
“Our soul tribe at least. Thank you, Raven, for the idea and for personifying that playful piece,” said Ursula. “You double Gemini you! Even if you make us uncomfortable at times, your teasing Heyoka energy is important to show us who we really are…. Now here’s another idea,” she continued. “It’s not as playful, though it could be. I’ve been getting that it’s time for me to do more active mentoring, starting with teaching a class. It’s about all the things we’ve been exploring together over the years in our Medicine Groups – basic stuff like calling sacred space, smudging, grounding, and moving on to dousing, pendulums, tarot….”
“Kinesiology, hands-on healing,” added Charley.
“Manifesting,” said Pia.
“Speaking of moving things along.”
“Exactly. Thanks to Charley taking over the bulk of the organization work from me and with some new help the store can now afford, I’ll have more time again. We need to be more formally sharing the skills we’ve developed over the years and not just one-on-one like I’ve been doing.”
“Bravo! I’ve been thinking that might be a good next step for you,” said Raven, perching on the side of the tub to cool down.