Expansion - The OrionWisdom Newsletter
Spring 2012

Greetings From Elisabeth
Spring has burst forth here in central Virginia.  She's not paying attention to the official calendar but her arrival is most welcome, even if it was a mild winter.  This issue of Expansion includes book reviews, a bit of art, a new Orion material project and more.  I do hope you find something that speaks to you.
The Orion On… section in this issue, edited from a personal session, explores trusting life, living in the flow of the 'river' – as in the river of life.  And in that journey, some insights about respecting our capacities that we may take for granted, also comes into view. 
The client shared this in an email after the session and I felt it was a wonderful description of an experience of working with Orion.
'I wanted to share that although a lot of what I talked about had been present and percolating for the last few weeks, talking with you and Orion was in some ways, my first articulation of my experience, including to myself. Percolating is a good way to describe my process, as I do not share my thoughts on these things, I tend to just be mindful and aware of the movements rising and interacting and falling, without really pulling them out into words. Talking about them with you and Orion is very helpful to me to pull them out and take a look at them and get some gentle nudging and feedback to "consider" alternative or additional connections.'
Almost all of the Orion material comes from individual and group sharings with Orion.  The work is rooted in the principle that, as Orion says, 'We all are always speaking to and for each other.'  
Again and again, I thank you for continuing to share your lives in this way.
As ever, best to you all,
My ornamental Japanese Plum tree, which began blooming in February

Orion on Trusting Life & Respecting Your Capacities
 Orion:   …You share with us a sea-change, a new perspective that is emerging for you - the sense of and direct experience of feeling connected with the flow and allowing yourself to move with and from that sense more freely.  This awareness was evoked, in part, by your recent reading of Krishnamurti, a great sharer of spiritual thought. In essence, what he was is speaking on and what you are feeling into, is trust in life.   
When we speak of trusting life, we  mean 'life' as the current that flows through all living, the essence of life.  That is the part that, if one listens and allows, is a current like that in a river.  When we're in the river and we move with the current, we will discover what shows up as to what action to do next.  'Can I go over this way?  Do I need to push off from the bank?  Do I need to protect myself going over the falls? ' Everything in the river begins to lead us to 'knowing' what is sometimes called 'right action' – that which is aligned in the moment, even if it does not always match typical understanding or what are seen as basic assumptions. 
It's a dance of awareness.  Because being in the flow it isn't actually just like, 'I'll go down the river and whatever happens, happens.'  Rather, one is considering, 'Not only am I trusting in Life, but I am trusting in my capacity to listen to, synch with and speak from and act from this current of Life.'  So one is not just tumbling along.  You are noticing each moment – as in, now I should go underwater; now I should push off, now I should pause and so forth. 
You've thought a lot about your fears and what makes you feel safe. As you now look at the past and how you are coming to feel about yourself, we want you to consider placing the past in the context of, 'How did those fears and response to fears, serve me?'  For instance, we don't think your 'busyness' is only avoiding this and that; that your actions are only out of fear and distance.   Yes, some elements became problematical, out of balance perhaps. But underneath we see that your 'doing', which you judge, is also truly aligned at it's core as an expression of  your creativity.  So many people think of 'creativity' as art and music and that kind of creation, but it is broader than those focuses.  Creativity is the act of  'creation' – making action in the world.
We feel you downplay  and do not fully value the part of your heart that is expressed in your business world.  To us, your 'business sense', which has been there since you were 14 years old and always seems to arise, is an actual capacity and talent of recognizing something in the world. You move with what you sense, move towards it and create certain outcomes and find still other different and often newer outcomes or approaches.  This is, in a way, your art, your creation.  Perhaps you cannot agree with this, finding your work not having the same value as art and other kinds of creativity, but let's look at it as an abiding talent. 
How our minds naturally work express themselves uniquely in what we are drawn to and do. When one looks at people who love word puzzles, we often find their mind sees letters and fills in the words in a way other people cannot as easily do and they also like to do it.  Other examples easily come to mind.  The systems analyst looks at information and can readily reorganize it, see missing pieces and where additions need be made  In your business world, this quality is consistent and emerges again and again in your life.  It  is a creative process and that creative element is part of why you always return to, regardless of your worries that you are too focused and should express other things in life.  You have examined how your focus becomes problematic, but you have explored less the idea that  'This is something which is my expression in the world.'  
This aspect of expression from a deeper place is why other people can't just do what you do.  This inner quality is why someone else selling real estate didn't make it go where you made it go.  Why someone else doing a deal doesn't get the deal you do.  Why someone else looking at the system of inventory doesn't come up with what you come up with.  It's not just your knowledge and experience involved. Rather it's under the conscious mind - a recognition from a very inner, intuitive, creative way of 'this is how this energy needs to match up with that energy.'  You are always recognizing the essence of a situation and then finding alignments.  And in your case, you have all the inner imagery of grids and maps and diagrams which are an expression of this aspect of your creativity. 
Can you look at the past with this question, 'What if it's true that the essence of what I have been doing – no matter how out-of-balance it has felt, is really expressing a creative principle.'   With this, you acknowledge that the core is a consistent positive expression.  Allow that positive quality to integrate – which gives yourself permission to respect your own talent and  capacity; to see it not just as 'business gone wild', to see yourself not only as 'an obsessive worker to avoid all other things'.  Yes, it is true - one can take one's capacity and lose yourself in it -  but we feel you've gotten disconnected from the root value and worth of this capacity. 
We want you to hold a 'qualitative self-respect' – a respect for the basic, consistent qualities of yourself.  Open to the possibility that there really is an aligned, useful, worthy of respect element that is part and parcel of the nature of you.  With such self-acknowledgement, new ways to move with such capacities and find expansiveness or a different balance, are more readily open to you.  By beginning with the focus on 'Well this working pattern is just part of my nature, my creativity too.'  you may find you wake up one day and easily begin to plan that vacation you have been unable to take.  Acknowledging the usefulness or value of where you actually are is often the root to allowing change.
Without respecting and valuing the worthiness within present situations and choices, we easily feel, 'Well, I have to have all of these ducks in a row before I can make that change.'  You have to have all the 'ducks in a row' when you don't really trust and respect and truly recognize how there is an alive energy already in place.  And yes, your concern that when you take a vacation – vacate your business - there might indeed be this or that which needs to attended to, but in reality, it will work out.  It certainly works out when we feel either a trust in 'Hey, this trip all came together, I'm going.'  Or a trust in 'Look, if I really have to pay attention to something, I'll know, so I'll do it.'  Or 'This can just wait till I'm back' or 'I'll call you from my trip.'
In other words, that trust naturally emerges when we allow ourselves,  as you have been exploring, to be present in the river, in the flow, in the essence of life – which doesn't mean we need to exclude all the mundane things we already do, like balancing the checkbook or ordering inventory.  But when we want to shift our focus, there will be a strength that will support us in knowing that everything doesn't fall down if today I go golfing instead of balancing the checkbook.  With trust, you really know the check book is still going to be there.  Or you might come to even know that in the whole, it doesn't matter, as in 'This is right today where I need to be and what I need to do and if I have to burn the midnight oil tomorrow, I'll have that energy, because I needed this energy today.'
We see that all your life you have had direct experience with moments of deep knowingness. Again and again, such moments have been very clear.  What most people do, though, is make those moments pivotal, turning points, special,  or extraordinary.  Now you are seeing how the 'extraordinary' is actually embedded in, and a part of, the 'ordinary' -  the everyday of our relating with the world.  It  can become integral with our everyday when we can relax into it, listen to it, remember we're part of it – we're in the river – and again, trust it. 
And in trusting the flow of life, we return to developing your respect about yourself and your own capacities.  Ask, 'Can I trust myself on this? As you build trust in yourself, using your focus and attention as well as setting intention, you are opening the door to a more integral experience and perspective which lets the  new and fresh emerge.  And as you put conscious attention to trusting the you 'just-as-you-are' and trust in the capacities you have and have always had, you can move to something new and know, 'I'll find a way.  It will work out.  I will be able wherever I am to find my way.' and get there from a deep knowing. 
We can easily be thrown into doubt, when we are not cognizant of, or practiced in, trusting ourselves.  We can easily be thrown into doubt.  Doubt can then close our reception of the present, close our reception of this abiding connection that exists and you are sensing.  Doubt throws us back to the past, to what we have done before and know how to do, but not with the depth of feeling we find when we move from 'I trust I know what to do.'  Doubt throws us back to 'First, I've got to do this and then I've got to do that' - back into the mechanisms of what we do, which is different than the essence, the heart, the soul of what we do.
Yet, after all we've just said about giving attention and focus, much of this need not be a conscious 'doing'.  Your reading, your experiences and conversations are inviting you to put these ideas and perspectives on 'the cognitive table' to be seen.  In addition, they are working on the 'back burner', simmering away. From there you can let these thoughts and concepts become something that 'comes up' in the right context, something you find you are sharing with another.  In time, situations will appear and you may witness a new response emerge.  You may realize 'Oh, I handled that differently.' or 'I'm handling that differently.  I'm responding differently.'   Or you might notice it in retrospect, as in, 'You know, a month ago I would have made a really big deal out of that and this time, I just went with it.'  With each such recognitions, you are building a new chapter in your history of awareness.
Concept, idea, and consideration are all moving through integration and towards action and moves in ways seen and unseen.  We cannot always see our growth.  Just like when you are a child and you are physically growing, you don't really notice you've grown until you reach a marker, as in you're shoes are too small, your shirt doesn't fit.  Sometimes we know about the process and that helps us understand what is going on, as when a child notices aching bones and might say,  'Oh my bones ache because I am getting taller.'  So it is a varied experience of recognizing growth – be it in the moment or in retrospect.  All of these ways are part of the wholeness of experience and none of them are better or worse. 
Integration is still a further development of growing.  One may have heightened awareness of this and clarity about that and then as it begins to integrate, those specific experiences become more 'part and parcel' of our whole.  Our learning may move to the background, as it were, Then we don't always see the growth as clearly and sharply defined, unless the situation emerges that throws light upon it and we might say, 'Oh, I see what I am doing there or what I used to do there.'
You share that you are feeling more connected with the world. We invite you to sensing into  in a similar, concurrent experience of feeling more 'with' you.  Feel more of a trust with you, of a recognition and respect of you.  Those concurrent arenas will meet, merge and dance together in a way we feel you will find very supportive and expansive, and from that place, actions will begin to move. 
And if it's too much to respect, love and acknowledge one's self – because there are so many social things against that in a true way – approach it and do it as a consideration, as a device.  Say, 'I would like to be able to do that.  I will allow some of that in.'  This is an approach where you are not trying to use the mind's will saying 'I must'.  Rather, we invite the 'mind' to say, 'Okay.  I will try to go along with this and I am willing to see it and feel it when it shows up.  Or at least I think I am.'  We feel this approach facilitates a truer, deeper connection since it acknowledges the truth of whatever ambivalence or doubts may be present.  And if it doesn't seem to work and you don't feel able to do this, don't worry.  It's already set in motion.  If you're not ready at one moment, you will be so at another.
New alignments will find their way, and in ways you will be able to recognize and make use of, including feedback from other people – often, unexpected or unsolicited feedback.  You may find that your nephew tells you how he loves you and your friend tells you how he knows how you have stood by him all these years.  We receive such comments about ourselves. but most people because of typical cultural socialization, don't really allow it in.  But we ask you to consider that there is an aspect of truth being shared with you.  Consider that the interconnection of all things has brought you a mirror of your growth and value.  Consider how readily you would want to give to another with words of support or caring or love. And in that, consider accepting such gifts as they come to you.
excerpted & edited from a personal session and permission and gratitude

The Better Angels of Our Nature: Why Violence Has Declined
Stephen Pinker offers a controversial history of violence. Pinker is also the author of The New York Times bestseller The Stuff of Thought.  My husband, Dennis, introduced me to this book and while it is a lengthy tome and you may not actually be moved to read it, I think you may find, like me, that it is one you will be happy to know about and contemplate. 
From BookList: 'Faced with the ceaseless stream of news about war, crime, and terrorism, one could easily think we live in the most violent age ever seen. Yet as New York Times bestselling author Steven Pinker shows in this startling and engaging new work, just the opposite is true: violence has been diminishing for millennia and we may be living in the most peaceful time in our species' existence. For most of history, war, slavery, infanticide, child abuse, assassinations, pogroms, gruesome punishments, deadly quarrels, and genocide were ordinary features of life. But today, Pinker shows (with the help of more than a hundred graphs and maps) all these forms of violence have dwindled and are widely condemned. [italics are mine] How has this happened?
This groundbreaking book continues Pinker's exploration of the essence of human nature, mixing psychology and history to provide a remarkable picture of an increasingly nonviolent world. The key, he explains, is to understand our intrinsic motives- the inner demons that incline us toward violence and the better angels that steer us away-and how changing circumstances have allowed our better angels to prevail.'
What also intrigued me is that rather than only expressing a learned opinion, Pinker's  data supporting his contention, is deep and extensive. He reminds us that current media and pundits often give us the impression of more danger and dissonance than is actually supported by a clear study of data and relative percentages.Hopefully this respected voice may actually challenge and change the way we think about our society.  

The Better Angels of Our Nature @ Amazon.com

The Mystery of Grace
On another note, I continue to find and enjoy metaphysical exploration through fiction. Charles DeLint is a long-time favorite of mine. 
From Amazon.com: 'DeLint writes some of the finest urban fantasy around -- character driven, mystical, and with a deep faith in humanity's goodness…The mystical qualities of life after death and the essences of faith, family and friendship are… fascinating and the ending remains a mystery (as it should). All the wonderful ambiguities of our humanity are here.'  
The Mystery of Grace may be a journey you'd like to delve into.

Mystery of Grace @ Amazon.com

Daily Oasis is a wonderful free newsletter from Mili & Johnny Dillar that shares collages and one I myself and Deb Booth contribute to.  A delight each day.
Mili and Johnny are both facilitators of a process called Soul Collage® - described at SoulCollage.com as 'a creative and satisfying collage process.  You make your own deck of cards – each collage card representing one aspect of your personality or Soul.  Use the collage cards intuitively to answer life's questions and participate in self-discovery.'
collage by Mili Dillard

DailyOasisCollage.com - also on Facebook

Dancing In Wisdom – Spiritual Awareness As We Age
I have just begun a new project working toward an Orion book exploring spiritual awareness as we age.  I have several clients who are over 70 and their work with Orion hasshared some fresh and useful ways of living with changing lives. 
I am transcribing and having session material transcribed [thanks Bonnie!] and my dear friend Helen and I will begin the collecting/editing process as the transcripts emerge.
If you have any sessions or notes around this topic – either your own sessions or perhaps about parents or others, please let me know. The sessions can be mp3s or transcribed [that would be lovely!]
As of now, I am thinking of compiling e-books as we go along and then perhaps compiling them as one book.  
Realm of Discovery - quote  from Orion and image by Deb Booth is available as a notecard or print.

Deb Booth - DifferentLightStudio.com

A Touch of Synchronicity
In closing, I wanted to share this lovely synchronicity story.  My friend Lynn told me her story about her cat, Phantom, which is really a story of a blonde dog in Serbia/Montenagro and a blonde cat in Silver Spring, MD.
While traveling in Butvar, Montenagro,  Lynn saw a sad, homeless blonde dog with an eye infection.  She would feed the dog every day.  Before leaving, she knew the dog would probably not last long and told the dog she should incarnate in Silver Spring MD.  Lynn knew that when she would see a cat that is very, very blonde (an unusual color for a cat), she would know it was this dog and would give her a good home.
Ten years later back in Silver Spring, the neighbors saw a pale blonde cat and call him the Ghost Cat, so Lynn named him Phantom and took him in.  Synchronicity? Reincarnation? However you think of it, I find it a lovely tale of wonder and the interconnection of all things.

We look forward to hearing from you....
Reach us at orionwisdom@gmail.com

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Elisabeth Y Fitzhugh

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