If every one of us consciously carried peace in every step during 2021, would this be a great year? I began thinking about this, but about “peace in every step” when John and I were doing the Lakota ceremonies we loved. Every sweat lodge and Sun Dance was an outside event. We were making prayer ties almost every weekend for years sitting outside in all sorts of weather, good and bad. While doing this, I began watching how connected I was to the earth, and all that was taking place on her as my own life seemed to change with the earth’s events. There was more chaos in my own life when chaos took place on the earth. Going through chaos made me focus on how I might maintain balance in my life and bring peace to me rather than draw more chaos and confusion. I also saw that as flowers began to emerge with the change of seasons from Winter to Spring, businesses that I had not yet contacted myself were calling me, asking prices, and wanting me to present
When I was making prayer ties and thinking about what I was being taught in this way, it dawned on me. I had been told that we make prayer ties before going into a sweat lodge to open the path for answers to come during the sweat. Duh! Sometimes I am a little slow. With or without prayer ties, when we say a prayer aloud, our words go up to Heaven, and they also go out in front of us into the earth. Thus, the earth can help us on our path. For instance, those little light beings that live within mother earth and have shown themselves to many at our sweats can help us increase our own light on our path. It seems like we get lots of invisible help from above and from within the earth, which we are not aware of! I suddenly realized that we plant seeds in both Heaven and on Earth when we pray. When praying silently or out loud, we are heard. When we pray out loud, our prayers go out into the universe stronger. I feel certain that all prayers are heard. Some prefer to pray quietly, and that is just fine. I pray both ways, but I feel like I am heard more strongly when praying out loud. So with the help above and help in this beautiful earth, we all stand on and walk upon, our paths will open and improve. Making prayer ties with my hands truly helped me stay focused on prayer.
I have also have learned that writing sends thoughts into the universe stronger. Thus, when something is really bothering me, I make a prayer. If something hurts me or makes me angry, I write out my situation and ask that God and Angels take my problem. I then let go as I put it into my God Box and step aside. I mention this again because I have seen miracles come from a God Box for many people. It helps me to quit trying to solve the problem myself or control the situation. Instead, I get out of their way so that they can help. Writing out a problem moves the problem bothering me from inside me, and I am better able to let go. I also do not react as quickly. Before I react, I take the time to sit down and write what happened, then write my part in what happened and theirs. It helps me see old patterns and look closely to see if I need to heal within. Did it touch an old hurt? First, I see it, and then I can heal it. I can change no one else but me!
Through all of this, I saw that “It all goes back to prayer.”It takes us to look both within and without for answers. The seeds we plant through prayer and those first thoughts about what we want form “our seeds sent to God and Spirit.” Sometimes we get our answers from God/Spirit quickly and, at other times, we get it in God’s time rather than our time. However, it helps us maintain peace within and rebalance. When balanced, we will be more aware of our problem being worked on when receiving a sign.
So, in 2021, what if we began to use skills we know to maintain peace within and walk more gently upon our Mother Earth. We do take our earth for granted. When we Sun Danced, we did it barefooted. I became conscious of our earth and being gentle as I walked upon her or danced upon her. What if we mindfully stop taking for granted so many simple things in life and start seeing with new eyes and more gratitude for the smallest of gifts, no matter our situation? Every time we use water, we need to be aware of all it took to be available. It is time that we do not waste it. When we sit down to a meal, we must be conscious and mindful of what it took to grow our food and deliver the food to us.
What if we made a conscious effort to become more cognizant of the words we speak? I consciously decided to stop reacting quickly when I saw something on social media or when a person irritated me or hurt me with what they said. I learned techniques to help me not respond and perhaps later regret how I sounded. Every word we say and every word we write that is negative will come back to us in our life when we most need something positive to come to us. So if we speak negatively about someone or say a nontruth, we will receive the same in our future. I study my own words carefully. I even stopped using some words as I did so. For instance, I no longer ask to be stronger or to be more patient. When I did that, I discovered that I was drawing lessons to make me stronger or become more patient. What if we became more compassionate and empathetic?
Here is something I took for granted. Most people do not know this, but a year and a half ago, I went for about three months without being able to urinate from the time my feet hit the floor in the morning until I went to bed that night. Some doctors I finally got an appointment with did not seem too concerned because I could go during the night. A pain came every time during the day when I felt like I had to go to the bathroom. All liquid that needed to be released made me feel like I had to go to the bathroom. I would sit down, and then the pain came instead. It took three months before I could find a doctor that could help me. It required a complete pelvic surgery. I was finally told about OU Physicians Women’s Pelvic and Bladder Health, where I was fixed. I thankfully feel great again, and I now make a gratitude prayer every time I sit down to use the bathroom. Yes, we do take little things we can do daily for granted. This helped me be more compassionate and have more empathy for others having a similar difficulty or even a different limiting problem.
As I thought about Peace In Every Step for years and how to achieve it, I eventually saw a book in one of our children’s house. Thich Nhat Hanh wrote it. The title was “Peace Is Every Step.” It is a great book. First, we have to find peace within Self. This peace will spread to our family. It will then expand to our community, and we will eventually have peace covering the world. Love, compassion, and altruism are the basis for peace.
Happy New Year! It is a new year, a new beginning, and we have many new possibilities coming to us! As we go forward, I invite you to join me in achieving peace on earth and let it begin with each of us.
LESSON: Consciously breath in everything good while taking a deep breath and then release all that is negative when exhaling. Do this repeatedly. It is a beginning. Then when upset, take a few minutes and do this suggested activity. We are all worth the effort we do this.
GIFT: I am more conscious of my internal life and external life physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. The peace within brings joy and greater understanding and gives me the ability to have greater compassion. This is a big gift! This does not mean that I succeed all of the time, but I love my life and all I have gone through, both the negative and the positive! I am still learning!